New Hellgate Concept (work in progress)

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  • New Hellgate Concept (work in progress)

    Hi all,

    Hell Gates in Albion Online are a hotly debated topic, and always have been.

    For some time now, we have been of the opinion that with the current hell gate map layout and mechanics, even by tweaking certain aspects of it, they would always have issues.

    A while back, we have started working on a new hell gate map, which, coupled with change mechanics, would solve the problems posed by the current hell gate design. The map for this is mostly done and is being internally pre-tested.



    Design Goals
    • Hell gates are about PvP.
    • Mobs in hell gates should act as sources for loot and as time buffers that allow a 2nd team to join the hell gate before it is finished.
    • Mobs should play no, or a very limited, role in deciding who wins the PvP fight
    • Hell gate strategy should not be affected by artificial game mechanics such as timers
    • Dodging the opponents team should not be possible. At the same time, there needs to be a legitimate way out of the hell gate if something unexpected happens (such as: your healer is disconnected, etc)
    • Camping the opponents team entrance should not be a valid strategy


    Concept (work in progress)
    • The map has multiple entrances, and if a group joins the hell gate, an entrance will be picked for them at random. This is important as it makes sure that you do not know where the 2nd team would show up, discouraging gate camping. (and, in any event, groups that join get the protection bubble)
    • The map itself contains no - or very few, but weak - trash mobs, as we do not want mobs to play any significant role in hell gate PvP fights
    • In each corner of the map, there is a mini-boss. The mini-boss is ranged, quite immobile, and you cannot leash him, and he is easy to disengage. You also cannot hide behind him as he is right in the corner. Killing a mini boss will take around 2 minutes
    • The mini-bosses act as a time buffer allowing a 2nd team to join the hell gate. Once all mini-bosses are killed, the main boss spawns. At this point, no other team can join the hell gate.
    • If you kill the main boss (this should take around 4-5 minutes), an exit portal spawns, allowing you to instantly exit the hell gate
    • You can also exit the hell gate through one of the entrances, however, only after you have been inside the hell gate for at least 5 minutes. Also, while in the hell gate, logging out will take 5 minutes, too. If 5 minutes is not enough to prevent dodging, we'd increase that number.
    • This concept would work well with or without a hostile counter. Testing would show which one is better


    Why it's cool
    • Close to zero interference of mobs in PvP fights. No more "who pulls the mob first" games
    • Player groups can get to each other straight away, without a mobs blocking them
    • Incentive for the 1st team to kill mini-bosses fast, as this prevents another team from joining the hell gate
    • Dodging problem solved via "cannot exit for 5 minutes" debuff when entering hell gate.
    • No more waiting for or playing around timers


    Map Sketch
    (Please admire MsPaint skills below)



    We are looking forward to your feedback.

    All the best,
    Korn
    Images
    • hellgate_sketch.jpg

      30.22 kB, 596×719, viewed 10,073 times
  • Korn wrote:

    Hi all,

    Hell Gates in Albion Online are a hotly debated topic, and always have been.

    For some time now, we have been of the opinion that with the current hell gate map layout and mechanics, even by tweaking certain aspects of it, they would always have issues.

    A while back, we have started working on a new hell gate map, which, coupled with change mechanics, would solve the problems posed by the current hell gate design. The map for this is mostly done and is being internally pre-tested.



    Design Goals
    • Hell gates are about PvP.
    • Mobs in hell gates should act as sources for loot and as time buffers that allow a 2nd team to join the hell gate before it is finished.
    • Mobs should play no, or a very limited, role in deciding who wins the PvP fight
    • Hell gate strategy should not be affected by artificial game mechanics such as timers
    • Dodging the opponents team should not be possible. At the same time, there needs to be a legitimate way out of the hell gate if something unexpected happens (such as: your healer is disconnected, etc)
    • Camping the opponents team entrance should not be a valid strategy


    Concept (work in progress)
    • The map is a huge hall
    • The map has multiple entrances, and if a group joins the hell gate, an entrance will be picked for them at random. This is important as it makes sure that you do not know where the 2nd team would show up, discouraging gate camping. (and, in any event, groups that join get the protection bubble)
    • The hall itself contains no - or very few, but weak - trash mobs, as we do not want mobs to play any significant role in hell gate PvP fights
    • In each corner of the hall, there is a mini-boss. The mini-boss is ranged, quite immobile, and you cannot leash him, and he is easy to disengage. You also cannot hide behind him as he is right in the corner. Killing a mini boss will take around 2 minutes
    • The mini-bosses act as a time buffer allowing a 2nd team to join the hell gate. Once all mini-bosses are killed, the main boss spawns. At this point, no other team can join the hell gate.
    • If you kill the main boss (this should take around 4-5 minutes), an exit portal spawns, allowing you to instantly exit the hell gate
    • You can also exit the hell gate through one of the entrances, however, only after you have been inside the hell gate for at least 5 minutes. Also, while in the hell gate, logging out will take 5 minutes, too. If 5 minutes is not enough to prevent dodging, we'd increase that number.
    • This concept would work well with or without a hostile counter. Testing would show which one is better


    Why it's cool
    • Close to zero interference of mobs in PvP fights. No more "who pulls the mob first" games
    • Player groups can get to each other straight away, without a mobs blocking them
    • Incentive for the 1st team to kill mini-bosses fast, as this prevents another team from joining the hell gate
    • Dodging problem solved via "cannot exit for 5 minutes" debuff when entering hell gate.
    • No more waiting for or playing around timers


    Map Sketch
    (Please admire my MsPaint skills below)



    We are looking forward to your feedback.

    All the best,
    Korn


    Awesome! <3 :*

    Best points:
    Hell gates are about PvP.
    Dodging the opponents team should not be possible.
  • Seems like a good change, though it needs to have lava flows and stalagmites around the map so that different comps have different place where they want to fight. In this scenario a hostile counter would be hugely important to avoid a group jumping the others on a mini boss (even if the mini boss resets fast, the group fighting it will be low energy/on cd).
    Glaive (rip)
    Infernal #1 :D ...ALSO RIP
    I am also eternally poor.
  • I really liked how it looks like so far on paper, good job SBI.
    I'm just worried about two things:
    1) I think the player count should exist so people don't engage me while I'm killing the miniboss, specialy if they respawn from a portal with the protecting shields. As you said @Korn, you want zero mob interaction on fights and I think the player count would avoid it. If you hide the player count, then what everybody will keep doing is leaving 1 player scouting while 4 do boss.
    2) I know that's a MS Paint picture haha but I need to know... the whole map isn't going to be a flat thing, right? I'd like to see some strategy points
  • This is a change in the right direction @Korn

    Consider the map design for certain weapon types that need atleast one choke point to be effective (such as glacial). The two bridges and the two small walkways in the current design fulfill that need.

    The mini bosses sound like a good concept as long as the fame/silver/loot is still comparable to the current iteration of hellgates. I would recommend focusing the mini boss design around skillshots that a good group will be able to avoid if playing well. That way if a group engages on them while fighting one they shouldn't be at a huge disadvantage with healers low on mana etc. because of having to heal against a static auto attack for 2 minutes straight.

    Avoid adding any trash mobs, (we see that statement "very few" in there ;) ) you don't need those.

    Aside from that, since this new design will clearly take some time to develop, please revert the recent changes made to hellgates, so my group has a reason to play the game again.

    All in all, thank you for coming up with ideas that would make hellgates more pvp focused.
  • Luci wrote:

    Aside from that, since this new design will clearly take some time to develop, please revert the recent changes made to hellgates, so my group has a reason to play the game again.
    I have to agree with this. My guild had 3 teams doing hellgates all day everyday before these changes, then yesterday everyone tried it again and got bored. Today no one did a hellgate.
  • EricWer wrote:

    I really liked how it looks like so far on paper, good job SBI.
    I'm just worried about two things:
    1) I think the player count should exist so people don't engage me while I'm killing the miniboss, specialy if they respawn from a portal with the protecting shields. As you said @Korn, you want zero mob interaction on fights and I think the player count would avoid it. If you hide the player count, then what everybody will keep doing is leaving 1 player scouting while 4 do boss.
    2) I know that's a MS Paint picture haha but I need to know... the whole map isn't going to be a flat thing, right?
    1) I'd tend towards having a player count, too.

    3) Of course not :)
  • EricWer wrote:

    1) I think the player count should exist so people don't engage me while I'm killing the miniboss, specialy if they respawn from a portal with the protecting shields. As you said @Korn, you want zero mob interaction on fights and I think the player count would avoid it. If you hide the player count, then what everybody will keep doing is leaving 1 player scouting while 4 do boss.
    The way I read it... the idea would be to kill all the mini-bosses and lock the dungeon so you could take out the main boss by yourself. And this mechanic is probably intended to stop people leaving scouts because you want to melt the mini-bosses ASAP.

    Korn wrote:

    The mini-bosses act as a time buffer allowing a 2nd team to join the hell gate. Once all mini-bosses are killed, the main boss spawns. At this point, no other team can join the hell gate.
    Am I misunderstanding this?

    Korn wrote:

    Incentive for the 1st team to kill mini-bosses fast, as this prevents another team from joining the hell gate
    So... you could leave a scout if you wanted to sometimes, but it would be an equally viable strategy to sometimes just try to lock the hell gate. And this diversity of tactics seems like a good thing to me.
  • Seems nice, very nice indeed.

    This new map also has a better ability to show more of the "nature" of the hell realm.

    I hope there will be alot og mountains and different levels in there to create many strategic points and situations.
    "A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad"
    - Shigeru Miyamoto
  • The new design would prevent being ganked while under mobs and somewhat limits the chance of dodging if there is opposing team. However one can still dodge with good chance:
    1. send in naked scout to see if there is a team inside
    2. if not, go in. Then you are vulnerable to PvP for 5 minutes.
    3. if 5 minutes have passed, you are free to run.
    My suggestion would be to not allow exit or logout until the minibosses are killed. When they die, an exit portal and "activator" spawns. Players can choose to exit, this is needed for a disconnected teammate which would make the boss unkillable. The remaining players must kill the minibosses to leave. To make it possible even with healer DC, make all the miniboss attacks dodgeable skillshot. The DC-ed player's avatar will remain there until he logs back and leaves using the portal, or a new team arrives and kill him.

    When the team uses the "activator" (which can be a weak, non-aggressive mob to kill), the portal closes, the gates lock and the boss spawns. When the boss dies, the portal opens again to let them leave.
    Blog: greedygoblin.blogspot.com
  • @Korn

    Just a question .. are there any plans how to prevent for lets say "above-average equiped groups" in lower tier of hellgates killing everyone that even tries to enter? Some kind of opposite "required" gear check like in expeditions but with some max gear level check with no option to change it inside. PVP zone like hellgate is cool only if there are at least some chances. In other words, what you think some "noob" party killed several times in hellgate by outstanding geared party would say .. 1) do we go another hellgate? .. or 2) screw hellgates forever, we have no chance. Result will be empty hellgates, empty with new players.

    Some kind of mechanism that low tier hellgates would be fun for everyone. Dangerous but still with at least some chances to win ..
    High tier hellgates should have no restrictions.