Zileas' List of Game Design Anti-Patterns

First Riot Post
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KalosCast

Senior Member

10-15-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by adwark View Post
I found burden of knowledge most interesting(I suppose one would expect you to get this one right first) and think Riot has done very poor job on that front.If you pay so much care not to burden people you should update data often and make sure it is accurate.This is one thing that amazes me as it is easy to do and you do it so poorly.Heroes knowledge base usually comes out week or so after hero,changes in heroes abilities are often not updated.Abilities don't have good descriptions(eg physical or magic damage - so many people ask about this again and again and still nothing is done about it).This is the most basic stuff that makes game much easier for new players and is easy to do(just time spent needed).Bad jobie you have done here indeed.
This is actually the one major thing that makes LoL difficult for the new player to access. Without playing a lot of heroes and then proceeding to get roflstomped as them, it's often difficult to know what good counters are for them, or even exactly how some powers work.

A good example of this is Twitch. If you've never played him before, he seems like Teemo. He's an auto-attacker with stealth who relies on movespeed bonuses and poison. He ambushes you and it's a one-on one fight, you start to destroy him, he's almost dead, and BOOM. 40% of your health is gone. Dead. The animation for Expunge is so small that it often gets lost in the particle chaos of a fight, and there's no effect when it's done to you either, except that the poison particles disappear, which is also very easy not to notice. It fits in well with his assassiny playstyle, but if you don't now how Twitch works, reading his ingame description doesn't allude to Expunge being anything like that instead of something like everyone else's highly visible moves.

Another one is Karthus's ult. Took me like forever until I knew that you could interrupt (though that's mostly because he pops it nowhere near me). Some of my RL friends considered a number of the other channeled moves to be some of the most overpowered things in the game until they realized that they can be interrupted.


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Knote

Senior Member

10-15-2010

Tryndamere's shout is pretty confusing til you learn it too.

Always used to wonder wtf Destiny was and what it did.

Used to think Ashe's volley could hit hard on a single champ if they were close (all arrows hitting the same target).


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Knyaz

Senior Member

10-15-2010

I agree with some of these and several of them are definitely in wow.

But i suppose you can have a game with elements of poor design when its as big as wow is. Though in lol i can see how one poorly designed ability could break a champ. Given you only have 4 abilities and a passive. I think its much more critical to get all the moves right.


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Knote

Senior Member

10-15-2010

Would be cool if they had champs that were more confusing only accessible at higher levels. So if you had a champion with a rupture effect, or abilities that you had to get some experience to figure out what they did first (plenty of examples already) then you wouldn't be able to play them or against them until higher level where you get more experience.

I have no problem letting people learn and get a smooth start (even though it's ruined by smurfs anyway), but you shouldn't sacrifice higher levels of play for that. =/

TBH the WCG games were so boring to watch.


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ThanksALatte

Senior Member

10-15-2010

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Originally Posted by Useless******* View Post
idk about you but i find a zilean starting with dorans/amplifying tome with mag pen runes/mp5 who can double nuke you for 1/2 your hp JUST as annoying as a rupture or getting mana burned, or stun locking champs for that matter.

rupture or bloodseeker was picked as a counter to annoying carry heroes aka queen of pain,anti mage and storm spirit just like tf or akali is picked against a kog or ashe.i dont even see the 'unfun' part.
This here

Things I fine unfun that rupture would counter:

Garen/Olaf charging the squishy and everyone on the team trying to just slow them down or get in the way

Flash/ghost run on any hero because you have to have an escape mech


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DreamsOfGrandeur

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Senior Member

10-15-2010

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Originally Posted by Kaolla View Post
you have a ton of knowledge burden abilities already in game.

akali mark of assassin
amumu despair
anivia frostbite
chogath feast
mundo sadism and masochism

etc etc.

these are all abilities that have mechanics that require you to learn their effects in order to properly play against. learning one more thing (don't move while the spell is on you) is not that large of a burden relative to what is already in the game.

i think if you really felt this was a problem you would find ways to make the game more intuitive or accessible with tutorials or even mini-game challenges that showcased and explained character abilities.
Problem is, some abilities are built upon Burden of Knowledge.

Mundo's Sadism is specifically designed to mislead the enemy, by being low-hp one moment, then high hp/non-dying the next moment.

It's not as bad as skills like Kennen's mark of the storm, or Zilean's time bomb for new players.
I've had friends scream: "What's this weird shiny thing!"
I also remember first fighting Zilean, and time bomb was so annoying. I kept raging at myself because I didn't know how they kept appearing when he was so far away.


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Knote

Senior Member

10-15-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThanksALatte View Post
This here

Things I fine unfun that rupture would counter:

Garen/Olaf charging the squishy and everyone on the team trying to just slow them down or get in the way

Flash/ghost run on any hero because you have to have an escape mech
Yeah there are plenty of extremely unfun things to play against (mostly early game). I could outplay a nerubian assassin in a lane easily (blow mana on purpose and let his mana burns do hardly anything) then los him and use bottle/pots to gain some mana when you plan on harassing/nuking him especially if someone comes to gank. Don't need mana to last hit and harass with auto attacks. =p

Better than, oh look, sona and X (kassadin, some other nuker, etc). I'll just sit at the tower and hope I can get ~10 CS before level 8.


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TechpriestJadoko

Senior Member

10-15-2010

One thing that some people don't understand, as annoying as it can sometimes be, is that losing is a learning experience.

"WHAT IS THIS MUNDO HE IS MASS HEALING HP AND NOT DYING I DON'T EVEN"

"Oh. That's his ult, it heals a lot of HP quickly. Hmm, maybe I should use my Ignite spell when he uses that so then he gets too aggressive and not healing nearly as much."

It's not like in DotA where you die and you don't really know why. Checking what killed you can help you prepare for it in the future, and can build counters around it.

You won't know what something does all the time, but it's easier to learn once you die to it.


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Moonberry

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Recruiter

10-15-2010

that was a fantastic read. It gives a whole new view to what to do when trying to balance things. Thanks a lot for taking the time to post that Zileas


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Osirris

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Senior Member

10-15-2010

Quote:
Burden of Knowledge
This is a VERY common pattern amongst hardcore novice game designers. This pattern is when you do a complex mechanic that creates gameplay -- IF the victim understands what is going on. Rupture is a great example -- with Rupture in DOTA, you receive a DOT that triggers if you, the victim, choose to move. However, you have no way of knowing this is happening unless someone tells you or unless you read up on it online... So the initial response is extreme frustration. We believe that giving the victim counter gameplay is VERY fun -- but that we should not place a 'burden of knowledge' on them figuring out what that gameplay might be. That's why we like Dark Binding and Black Shield (both of which have bait and/or 'dodge' counter gameplay that is VERY obvious), but not Rupture, which is not obvious.

In a sense, ALL abilities have some burden of knowledge, but some have _a lot more_ -- the ones that force the opponent to know about a specific interaction to 'enjoy' the gameplay have it worst.
Let me just stop you here. You can hardly claim anything about this category. There are TONS of abilities in LoL that aren't obvious what they do off the bat. I think its extremely unfair to say you wouldn't put rupture in the game because of its "subtlety". Whereas in reality Rupture was very noticeable. Extremely.

This is like you saying we won't make an orange because its orange, but that orange is ok because its not orange enough. Your falling into the realm of personal bias anytime you touch down on this.