So how should scavenger work in aftermath?
I think ideally it would be good if there were weapon tiers. This is easy, esp when you consider that you can skew weapons better with attachments.
T1 – A pump shotgun with frag rounds, G18 and a .44
T2 – One of the “best” assault rifles plus its optimal items. SKS or M417.
Utility weapons – RPG, M320 LVG.
Actually there are many options available. Ideally we want good weapons to be something a team works for, so having lots of them on a map detracts from the game overall. It would be easy to make a prefered set of weapons vs underdog weapons.
Things that need to be added or changed.
Health needs to be broken out of the medpack and turned into a periodically spawning item. On this note I would also say that health being boosted about 20% would be beneficial. Having played on servers like this I can honestly say it creates better firefights. The alternative is to have no attachments which also causes longer engagements due to slower TTK. 20% equates to around one more bullet in a fight.
Armour needs to be added. This is the largest problem since there is no mechanic currently. Armour would require extensive testing. Using quake numbers a full stack should add around 2-300% durability to a player. Different armour types would be fine here. A yellow and a red type that offer varying degrees of protection. The beauty of TDM is how levels can be setup to play very differently based on the load outs. Looking at popular TDM maps from quakeworld we see things like. DM2(2 red, 2yellow) DM3 (1 red 1 yellow) E1M2 (1 yellow 1 green). Wildy different setups there. In comparison to UT99 which is basically belt + jacket on every single map. Some variation would have made UT99 a lot more interested. Two jackets + belt? Three jackets? and so on. A robust armour system would give mappers much more variety.
An important thing to note is that simply giving more health is not the answer. Armour and health are very different because armour does not absorb all damage. Because of this grabing a red armour with 15 health does not offer you a great deal. You will still need to heal yourself somewhat before being more aggressive. Thus using health is not the answer.
Powerups – quad damage, invulnerability, etc. The class items could be used here. Defib is very powerful but I am not sure how game changing it would be as a short duration powerup. Quad damage could be fun, but at the same time would not be the same as in quakes. Maybe a powerup that doubled fire rate but halved recoil would be fun. This way if you miss you are not instagibbing the other player with one stray bullet. It would also make ammo a heavy consideration.
Another option would be a powerful weapon. Perhaps the M320 with a decent stack of ammo.
Ammo – Limit this to 3-4 ammo types – less if needed.
Scavenger TDM Maps
We want this to be 4v4. Maps need to be small enough to not have long travel distances between items, weapons and other key areas, decent interconnectivity without turning the level into swiss cheese is important. In addition being compact is good because we want spawners to be able to link up with team mates without a massive hike.
Ziba tower is the smallest close quarters map, however it is too large for the purposes of 4v4 TDM. Levels and atrium style maps are sorely missing in modern FPS and while they would not get past DICE QA in the older quake style, they could be created easily enough. A shopping center with ruined sections to add ramps.. Lifts, catwalks and so on. As already mentioned connectivity is important, ideally choke points should be negateable and locking down one area/item does not guarantee winning.
In the first post spawn weapons were discussed. As mentioned the spawn weapons consist of an empty pistol, a knife and a grenade. This leaves a player completely useless off spawn from a combat standpoint. In older FPS it may seem that spawn weapons are useless, but flooding enemies when they are weak should be a somewhat valid tactic. This allows taking down of weapons and camp zones even without weapons. This does not mean that spawning -> attacking should always be a valid tactic. A game that plays like this is quake 3 and its implementation of TDM, and while not bad it removes a lot of strategy and importance of items. Quake2 gave players a very weak starting weapon that did not allow much offensive action, or even defensive for that matter.
Players should spawn with something – but probably not a pistol as they are generally too powerful. A pump action shotgun with frag rounds, using the automatic shotgun damage, would do well here. They hit softly, shoot slowly but with 2-3 guys would be ok. Remove the suppression and we would be set!
A few more things..
Random weapon spawning has been mentioned on whirlpool as well as some other BF3 community sites. If this is entirely random it will completely detract from the gameplay. If all the weapons randomly spawn there is no rhyme or reason to how teams will play. The game will play worse than FFA. There will be no objectives, there will be no strategy.
By the same token players need to randomly spawn. If the current squad spawning system is allowed it compeltely detracts from the skill of surviving as a spawner and regrouping. This is an important aspect of TDM and while it may seem like it detracts from teamplay it in fact improves it due to increased difficulty of meeting up and playing together.
Plus spawn killing is similar to objectives and area control, if you control more of the map you have more “safe” area for your team to spawn in.
important – random spawning and lack of randomitem spawning.