[Suggestion] Dark Age: Losing Scout to TC

Hi,

I think good games are designed such that early game set-backs can be fought back. That means a mistake in the early game is not as bad as a mistake in the midgame which is not as bad as a mistake in the late game.

This concept is also known as “comeback mechanic”. A game without comeback mechanics is incredibly boring - whoever has an advantage just wins and that’s it.

Now in Age 2 we have a glaring design flaw that is unadressed for a long time: Losing a Dark Age Scout to an enemy TC.

  • It’s an easy mistake to make: even the top pros lose their scout to TC from time to time
  • It’s a massive disadvantage that straight up leads to a loss because scout has two function that are now missing 1) Can’t scout 2) missing feudal army backbone
  • There is no drawback for the opponent, no comeback/hidden advantage from this (besides not getting housed at 20/20 I guess?)

Reason this is so frequent

  • vision range of scout 4 < range of TC 6
  • Scout is often exploring opponent when vils gather boars (thus jump into TC + high firepower is likely)
  • TC kills scout in 2-3 volleys, little time to react

Overall it’s clearly a game design flaw:
Players often get into a huge disadvantage for almost no fault of their own. There is no reasonable comeback strategy after losing a scout in Dark Age. There were top level Age tournament games, where a players loss is a direct result of taking a full damage volley from a TC in Dark age.

Solution:
Make losing Scouts in Dark Age harder. Possible ideas, ranked by how much I sympathize with them, best on bottom:

  • Give Scouts pierce armor in Dark Age
  • Reveal TC location in Dark Age (vietnamese Team bonus as general game mechanic)
  • Make TC locations more obvious by having specific straggler trees that are ONLY next to TCs
  • Reduce TC damage in Dark Age (2-3 volleys to kill to 4-5 volleys to kill)
  • Reduce TC range in Dark Age (6 range to 5 or 4 range)

What do you guys think?
Did you ever lose a Dark Age Scout and felt the game was over?

1 Like

Just abuse the lack of ballistics and run away from TC, don’t make the game dumber. The TC isn’t auto firing, so it’s rewarding the better player who was paying attention

20 Likes

I am aware there are ways to mitigate this problem: watch for resources, especially stragglers and dodge when getting shot at. I am trying to do this myself.

Yet, people still lose their Scout to TC a lot. Even the top pros!

Thus, it’s a bad game mechanic.

That doesnt make it a bad mechanic at all.

If you’re not paying attention to your svout and lose it to tc fire you screwed up and your opponent didn’t.

6 Likes

They lose it because they weren’t paying attention, which is fair

11 Likes

I fully agree - it’s a mistake to lose your Scout to enemy TC. It happened because you didn’t baby sit your scout properly.

In addition I say:
It’s an easy and frequent mistake.
It’s an unforgiving and grave downside.

Thus: easy mistake in early game leads to huge disadvantage.

This is bad game design.

Do you disagree with my logic there?

2 Likes

Not that easy or frequent. Maybe at low skill levels. But if we’re going to balance the game around low skill lecel people we need dozens of changes

So learn from it instead of nerfing something you don’t like. Notice the signs your near your opponents tcs, and respond accordingly.

So let’s forgive bad play!

No, bad game design is making changes to cater to people instead of letting them learn from their mistakes.

Absolutely disagree.

Do you see pros complaining about losing their svout because of game design? Or do they blame themselves?

4 Likes

I fully agree, it only happens when you don’t pay attention.

Yet I say:
It’s easy to not pay attention for a few seconds.
It’s a HUGE disadvantage from this missed attention.

This is not fair at all.

Why do you think it’s fair?

The size of the downside should be proportional to the mistake. Like 5 seconds idle time on a village loses a few resources. 5 seconds idle time on your scout loses can lose you the game! That is not fair!

1 Like

The way it is right now, it’s fine. It’s your fault if you lose your scout early. Scouting is a skill which has to be learned.

5 Likes

It happens…

Reliable straggler trees are great markers on a lot of maps but painful on maps where they’re not.

Maps like Socotra are disgusting. The gold and stone spawn within 4 tiles of the town center. The second you find one of these, you need to make an immediate turn or you’re headed straight for the first volley.

I don’t really like any of the proposed solutions except for making TC locations more obvious. Straggler trees on arabia are fine, but other maps need work. It’s really hard for casual players to figure out the detailed map-specific knowledge (e.g. Socotra) to know what pathing they should take to avoid losing their scout for any given map.

Im usually all for making the game more beginner friendly but all of these are too abusable in one way or another.

Off the top of my head reducing TC range makes drush stronger and that’s your favourite!!???

Extra PA in dark age is completely counter intuitive “oh we gonna nerf your scout when it reaches feudal”

People already complained tc discovery was too easy with the lazy cardinal layouts of resources. Deer, stone, gold, boar all pointed to where the tc is. And propel didn’t like it

If anything i would say increase LOS of scouts only in dark age so we can all have mongol scouts in dark age. It gives you marginally better chance of avoiding tc fire.

But of all the mechanics in the game i think losing a scout is the most fair for being greedy with your scout.

2 Likes

I kind of like this one because it doesn’t really change the game. It’s just another indicator of where the TC will be. But I fear that this wouldn’t affect low elo players as much because they’re not taking care a lot of their Scout whereas pro players will almost never lose their Scout to the TC ever again. In general it would favor players who pay more attention to their Scout which isn’t a bad thing afterall.

2 Likes

It is not like you lost the game if you loose a scout. You can already comeback from this. We dont need additional measure to make losing a scout more forgiving.

7 Likes

Yeah definitely. It’s not even like losing a sheep nevermind a boar

Jusr get better at scouting.

Source: I suck at scouting and lose it arround 50% of the games

3 Likes

Jesus Christ the horror: everyone just going insta forward to lame

3 Likes

How about a special sound when a tc is discovered in dark age.

Atelast we get notified immidielty and can change cameras only to see it die…

It doesn’t change the game really, least intrusive solution in my opinion.

Other than that pierce armor in dark age would be fine too. Just hide the armor stats of sours in dark age, like how armor of buildings isn’t displayed either.

I hate losing my auto scout to enemy tc fire.

3 Likes

I hate losing my auto scout to enemy tc fire.

I think therein lies the problem…

Automating the parts of the game that, please forgive the bluntness, you are bad at - does not make the game more fun at a competitive level (Not singling out anyone, just saying you in a general sense).

Now that being said, it appears on this forum that there are two groups of people.

  • Those who play the game competitively and seek to get better at the game in order to win
  • Those who play the game for fun and just want an easier experience in order to win

Neither group is bad or good, it is just a matter of perspective. I would like to address the 2nd group for why I am against the auto-scout button to begin with.

The auto-scout button has opened the door with the question, “We automated this part of the game that is hard [scouting], why don’t we add another button/feature/warning to make another part of the game hard [scout dying to TC] not a problem anymore?” It is a never ending feature creep that continues to take away from what makes Age of Empires 2 such a great game - the skill ceiling.

You can pick up Age of Empires 2 in a weekend - which is awesome! However, you can spend over a decade playing the game (which I have), and still have areas, that are difficult, on which you work on to improve and gain mastery. This challenge and mastery is what makes AoE so awesome and what has kept the game alive so long.

To suggest changes such as these lowers the skill ceiling, and whittles away at what makes the game special, and so re-playable.

4 Likes

Don’t blame me for using auto scout, blame de. I have been one of the most voiced out auto farm and auto scout enemiy on the forum. My anti auto farm topic lkst was quite hot discussed back then.

I used to scout manually. I used to enjoy it. I miss doing it sometimes. But I am too lazy, now I just auto and whatever. Game has become worse but this is meta for me now. Thx de.

Now that auto scout is a thing, it’s unreasonable to punish players randomly for mistakes the ai doea for them, or reward players that had luck and their auto scout didn’t run in a tc.

Don’t blame me for using auto scout, blame de.

You are of course correct @Geojak92
I only wish that they would remove the feature; unfortunately, Pandora’s box has been opened :stuck_out_tongue: .

Now that auto scout is a thing, it’s unreasonable to punish players randomly for mistakes the ai doea for them, or reward players that had luck and their auto scout didn’t run in a tc.

That’s fair.

1 Like