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I used to be torn on my feelings on enemy level scaling, but I finally picked a side: it sucks

Fictive

Member
Nov 10, 2013
526
141
395
I agree with you, but I think devs find it easier just to scale everything than thinking about the intricacies of planning it all out. Id love to see that behavior change.
I think the same could be said of players leveling and getting through by brute force or sheer stats rather than actual strategy.

... but then, what strategy if the devs aren’t actually implementing any intricacies as you said? There’s an exchange to be noted here.
 

Kathanan

Member
Jul 20, 2015
99
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I can sort of understand why level scaling would appeal to game developers: it makes the whole design and testing phase easier; there's no need to constantly tweaks things because you've discovered that the player is too powerful or too weak at a certain point.

But, as many have pointed out, level scaling doesn't work. It's only good on paper.

It's actually what stopped me from playing Assassin's Creed Odyssey. I got bored of feeling as though I wasn't making any progress in the game or becoming more powerful.

I remember the first time I encountered level scaling, all the way back in FF8 on the PS1. It was plain ridiculous that the first enemies you encountered in the game were still able to dish a huge amount of damage even after you're 20 hours into the game, due to them being scaled to match the party.

Putting level scaling into a game means you might as well ditch the progression system altogether.
why did you not change the level scaling.. in the options menu?
 

Life

Neo Member
Jul 25, 2019
48
32
115
TBH, the problem of enemy AI isn't making them smarter/more adaptable/able to learn/etc. It's making them seem to be all those things while also staying stupid enough for players to still win.

Most of what we think of as enemy AI is more art than science and more choreography than tactics. As such, I don't know that the problem of crappy AI and bullet sponge difficulty levels will ever go away. =/
It's frustrating to say the least. I've been playing games so long - and each year it gets more difficult to find something that is both enjoyable and challenging. I usually choose hard mode and feel cheated when a game first asks you to finish on "Normal" to unlock "Hard." Oh so you want me to senselessly press one button for 13 hours so I could finally unlock some sort of satisfaction out of this game?
 

Zannegan

Member
Feb 20, 2018
764
389
420
It's frustrating to say the least. I've been playing games so long - and each year it gets more difficult to find something that is both enjoyable and challenging. I usually choose hard mode and feel cheated when a game first asks you to finish on "Normal" to unlock "Hard." Oh so you want me to senselessly press one button for 13 hours so I could finally unlock some sort of satisfaction out of this game?
Sorry, I didn't mean to be discouraging. There are ways to make compelling, reactuve, challenging enemies, but it would take a human investment from the big publishers, and I just don't have much faith in them these days.

I was surprised that the Shadow of Mordor Nemesis System didn't get ripped off wholesale in the era of open-world games, but even that seems like too much of a bother for them. Last I heard, FEAR was still the gold standard for enemy AI, and that game came out 15 years ago. *shrug*

On the other hand, with graphics hitting something of a plateau, they're going to have to adverise on the strength of something else. We can always hope.
 
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Aintitcool

Banned
Sep 3, 2017
1,366
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Vienna, Austria
Enemy scaling is done when you don't pay game designer enough to tune the game to different difficulties. I agree its a developer cop out and can lead to bad gameplay if the numbers behind the system get weird.
 
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Life

Neo Member
Jul 25, 2019
48
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Sorry, I didn't mean to be discouraging. There are ways to make compelling, reactuve, challenging enemies, but it would take a human investment from the big publishers, and I just don't have much faith in them these days.

I was surprised that the Shadow of Mordor Nemesis System didn't get ripped off wholesale in the era of open-world games, but even that seems like too much of a bother for them. Last I heard, FEAR was still the gold standard for enemy AI, and that game came out 15 years ago. *shrug*

On the other hand, with graphics hitting something of a plateau, they're going to have to adverise on the strength of something else. We can always hope.
Things will probably go in these directions for most games: multiplayer focus, user-created content and character customization . Maybe Souls-like games will focus on AI advances. RPGs will likely stick to the same old cos..people keep giving 9/10 for the same old.
 
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