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Dev Jam – Let’s Talk About Tiers

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Hey there Robocrafters,

As you’ll know, if you read last week’s Dev Jam, we’re keen to share with you with more frequently what it is we’re working on in Robocraft. Last week we released a Dev Jam explaining how we’re planning to upgrade the Steam version to Robocraft Infinity. If you didn’t catch that one, you can read about it here.

With the Tech Tree now live in Robocraft, our focus has now shifted on to the Tiers system. As we’re currently adding Tiers to the PC version of Robocraft Infinity, which will come to the Steam version when we upgrade it to the Infinity version, we wanted to give some more detail on how Tiers will work.


Tiers

If you’ve been playing Robocraft for a while, you may already be familiar with the concept of Tiers as they were in Robocraft back when the game was still in Early Access. Although we removed them as part of the continual development of the game, many of you in the community felt that was a mistake and so we have decided to bring them back. But rather than just bringing them back as they were, we’ve woven them into some of the cool features we have added since their original removal; such as additional game modes, League Ranking and things like that.

Here is a breakdown of how Tiers will work:

5 Tiers

  • There will be 5 standard Tiers plus one for Megabots (T1-5 and TM)
  • Each Robot part will have a Robot Ranking and this will be displayed as a stat in the Inventory screen
  • Each Robot part will also be renamed to follow the previous Tier naming convention: eg. a Laser Wasp will become a T1 Laser, and a Laser Leviathan will become a T5 Laser*
  • All Robots will be placed in a Tier; this will be based on the total sum of the Robot Rankings of all the parts used on that Robot
  • As you build a Robot, it’s Robot Ranking and Tier will be clearly shown, so you’ll be able to easily optimize your Robot for each Tier
  • Any Robots built above 2,000 CPU will be regarded as Megabots and will be placed in the Megabot Tier
  • When you enter battle you will be match-made with other Robots of the same Tier
  • New players will not initially be able to play in any Tier other than Tier 1
  • By unlocking new parts on the Tech Tree and building Robots with them, players will be able to progress through the Tiers from T1 to T5
  • Each Tier will have an XP bonus; with the higher Tiers providing more XP than lower Tiers
  • Players will need to design Robots that are optimal for each Tier by paying careful attention to the Robot Ranking
  • The Tier of any Robots in your Garage and those on the CRF will be clearly displayed in their thumbnail image
  • We will also add a Tier filter to the CRF to make it easier to find Robots for a given Tier
  • All players in a Party will need to ensure their Robots are the same Tier before entering a battle
  • The Party widget and UI will clearly display what Tier each Party member is in and we will message this so that players understand this is the case
  • The Battle Loading Screen will be updated to show the Tier of every Robot in battle so that users can see that the game is fairly match-made by Tier

Check out the work-in-progress screenshot below which highlights some of the details mentioned above (and a few other things too).

devjam_tiers_ui


Tier Rank Progression

  • Unlike the previous Tier system, the new Tiers will also have a Rank progression system similar to current League but there will be one for each Tier
  • In each Tier you will be able to progress from Bronze, Silver, Gold, Diamond to Protonium by winning more battles than losing via the MMR system that is in League (aka like an ELO system)
  • Unlike the current League, in the new Tier system, once you acquire a whole Rank (eg. Tier 4 Gold) you will ‘lock it in’, so if you decide you want to mess around in T4 for a bit you won’t ever lose that Gold rank
  • In between each Rank you will still gain and lose MMR as you win and lose battles so you will need to win more than you lose to lock in that next rank
  • The MMR system will be different at each Rank and each Tier so that it is easier to get from Bronze to Silver than it is to get from Diamond to Protonium, and easier to get to Protonium in T1 than it is in T5
  • A new Tier Rankings screen will be added so you can see your progress in each Tier at any time
  • A new Tier progression screen will be shown at the end of each battle to show your progress in the ranking of each Tier

Multiple Game Modes, One Button

  • In order to allow for Tiers to come back we are moving Battle Arena and Team Deathmatch to a single ‘Battle’ button
  • We will also be bringing back Elimination permanently (this will be 8 vs. 8)
  • When players queue for battle, a game mode will be chosen at random, so you will get a different mode and/or map each time you enter battle
  • This system has been designed for a number of benefits:
  • More players in the same queue that will allow us to matchmake fairly by Tier
  • Keep the queue times down
  • It allows us to add more game mode variants in future
  • There will be a settings option for game modes that allow you to ‘opt out’ of game modes you do not like. Please note that opting out of some game modes may result in longer queue times; so it will be down to player preference

We hope to have all of this done in the Infinity version of Robocraft within the next 3 weeks; after which we will plan to bring this all over to Steam as the next step.

Thanks again for taking the time to read through the Dev Jam; we’ll have another for you next week.

Happy Gaming!

Freejam

*Since some weapons like Lasers have more than 5 sizes, we will be making some of the less distinct sizes obsolete to keep things clean and have just 1 per Tier max. For example the Laser Hornet will be deprecated and any Hornets on Robots will be replaced with Wasps so they remain semi-intact