Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

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Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Bluespace » Mon Oct 19, 2015 9:34 pm #127701

Hi, i've been playing genetics recently, and wanted to give some feedback.
Genetics is currently unfun and needs a few tweaks.

1)Cloak of Shadow and Chameleon are basically the same. Remove CoS and keep Cham, one less block to power through.
2)There's too many disability blocks. Get rid of some. Really. It takes 40-50 minutes with average RNG to get all the powers.

Thank you!
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Cheimon » Mon Oct 19, 2015 9:52 pm #127702

The amount of disability blocks are, as I understand it, a deliberate balance to make it harder to find superpowers. They are not intended as such to be a fun feature, as far as I know.

Having said that, I really wish the genetics user interface was easier to understand. There is a lot of potential to change things with the system, but there's so much stuff to look up and so many things which are unnecessarily unclear. Why aren't the Unique Enzyme, Structural Enzyme, and Unique Identifiers named something more clear? Or at least labelled a bit better? Why are things numbered in hexadecimal? How exactly would I replace my name and genetic appearance with someone else's, for example, or ensure that mutations manifest more often in a given syringe?

Come to think of it, a lot of my problems are with the wiki guide. But the point still stands that the job is weirdly unintuitive for such a potentially interesting system. That and the genetics powers are all weirdly strong and unbalanced: hulk for example is a straight up hard counter to a bunch of different enemies, and invisibility is just really, really good for fucking with people. There doesn't seem to be a driving theme to superpowers, just a bunch of random features added one at a time of tremendously varying utility. Why not take a look at, say, XCOM for inspiration on how a genetics altering system can be much more than just a "fantastic or freak" dice rolls, and incorporate meaningful choices as well.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Bluespace » Mon Oct 19, 2015 9:57 pm #127704

I'm pretty much down for anything that isn't "click for 40 minutes only for the round to end once you can punch down walls."
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Incoming » Mon Oct 19, 2015 10:12 pm #127706

A very recent (aka probably not live on the server at the time you started this topic) reduced the number of disability blocks by four. This should help with the things you're talking about here.

https://github.com/tgstation/-tg-station/pull/12459
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Bluespace » Mon Oct 19, 2015 10:17 pm #127708

That helps. Immensely.
Now just remove like 2-4 more and genetics is band aided enough.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Helios » Mon Oct 19, 2015 11:58 pm #127732

Incoming wrote:A very recent (aka probably not live on the server at the time you started this topic) reduced the number of disability blocks by four. This should help with the things you're talking about here.

https://github.com/tgstation/-tg-station/pull/12459

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Amnestik » Tue Oct 20, 2015 1:19 am #127737

It's always been boring and tedious, and I think it was Carn's updates to it a year or two ago (improving the code, changing the method used to calculate mutations) which also made it even worse, but I'm glad it's finally been made bad enough to prompt a discussion about it.

Genetics isn't the only part of the game that isn't properly balanced around round length (and hasn't been for years), but this thread isn't about those.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby lumipharon » Tue Oct 20, 2015 1:52 am #127744

genetics has always been shitty to be honest.

Before it got 300 new disability blocks to bloat it out, it was comically easy to get all the powers - you could unlock all 4 in 15 minutes or so if you got some chems from the chemist.
The bloat made it way more tedious and time consuming, which while stopping Certain mother fuckers from hulking out every rounds within 10 minutes with a dual sword, it made it horribly unfun.

It needs a straight up rework, it's a pretty crappy system really.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby MisterPerson » Tue Oct 20, 2015 3:48 am #127787

Amnestik wrote:It's always been boring and tedious, and I think it was Carn's updates to it a year or two ago (improving the code, changing the method used to calculate mutations) which also made it even worse, but I'm glad it's finally been made bad enough to prompt a discussion about it.

Genetics isn't the only part of the game that isn't properly balanced around round length (and hasn't been for years), but this thread isn't about those.


carn's changes made it way better. The old system took 20-30 minutes to do while the new system took more like 10-15 minutes. What fucked it all up was goofball adding a ton of shitty defects that makes the whole system take 40 minutes.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby callanrockslol » Tue Oct 20, 2015 3:52 am #127789

I've been seeing people get all powers within 20 minutes recently, so either something major changed or people got good at the RNG somehow.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Oldman Robustin » Tue Oct 20, 2015 4:05 am #127790

1) People are astoundingly bad at testing blocks efficiently

2) Genetics is better than ever now that you don't lose powers with every DNA change


Old genetics you'd mess with someone's DNA until they got halk, and if they were lucky, one other power.

Now you can stack the powers without ever worrying about losing them... Stealth TK Xray CR Hulks for everybody!
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby callanrockslol » Tue Oct 20, 2015 4:20 am #127792

Power stacking is less of an issue now that tk hulk doesn't work as effectively as it used to, especially as bad as tk xray spaceproof fireaxe.
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Spoiler:
Urist Boatmurdered [Security] asks, "Why does Zol have a captain-level ID?"
Zol Interbottom [Security] says, "because"

Sergie Borris lives on in our hearts

Zaros (No id) [145.9] says, "WITH MY SUPER WIZARD POWERS I CAN TELL CALLAN IS MAD."

Anderson Conagher wrote:Callan is sense.

Errorage wrote:When I see the win vista, win 7 and win 8 hourglass cursor, it makes me happy
Cause it's a circle spinning around
I smile and make circular motions with my finger to imiatate it

petethegoat wrote:slap a comment on it and call it a feature

MisterPerson wrote:>playing
Do you think this is a game?

Gun Hog wrote:Untested code baby

oranges wrote:for some reason all our hosts turn into bohemia software communities after they implode

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Miggles wrote:>centration development
>trucking
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all we're saying is that you're not crag son


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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby PKPenguin321 » Tue Oct 20, 2015 4:51 am #127800

Oldman Robustin wrote:1) People are astoundingly bad at testing blocks efficiently

2) Genetics is better than ever now that you don't lose powers with every DNA change


Old genetics you'd mess with someone's DNA until they got halk, and if they were lucky, one other power.

Now you can stack the powers without ever worrying about losing them... Stealth TK Xray CR Hulks for everybody!

but you gotta admit that way back when, seeing a geneticist with all four powers was genuinely impressive
now it's almost commonplace if they know what they're doing and are given enough time to do it
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby onleavedontatme » Tue Oct 20, 2015 4:43 pm #127877

Taking 15 minutes or taking 40 minutes doesnt change the fact that its just a player sitting at a computer rolling the dice until stun immunity and harm baton hands pops out. At least goofs changes made hulk less common.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Bluespace » Tue Oct 20, 2015 9:46 pm #127972

Kor wrote:Taking 15 minutes or taking 40 minutes doesnt change the fact that its just a player sitting at a computer rolling the dice until stun immunity and harm baton hands pops out. At least goofs changes made hulk less common.

This.
It's outdated, needs some sort of fun implementation in it.
I mean, genetics as is, isn't exactly that bad, it just needs something to modernise and invigorate it, it's one of the jobs that really "appealed" to me in a space setting.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Oldman Robustin » Wed Oct 21, 2015 2:41 pm #128203

I consider myself pretty adept at problem solving.

I don't see any way to "improve genetics" without controversy.

If it isn't a chore to unlock powers then you invariably get faster+easier hulks/xray (imo xray is even more disruptive to most rounds since you can be spotted doing antag shit almost anywhere and you won't even know you've been spotted), then you get more people like Kor who will whine about genetics being OP, etc etc. until some coder sneaks an awful change through and genetics is worse than it was to start with.

If you try to move it from RNG to something more skill based (there is some degree of skill already in adjusting power settings to get blocks into manifestation range faster), then either you have powergamers unlocking it faster than ever and you get complaints from the previous paragraph... or powergamers continue to unlock it at the current rate and those who don't master game mechanics will be useless in genetic testing.

As it is right now it's got enough nuance and skill to make it rewarding to master, but unless you get crazy lucky you won't be rushing out powers to everyone. Even the manifestation system encourages a very hands-on and coordinated process compared to just handing out iWin injectors to security/fellow antags.

I have yet to hear a convincing alternative to the current system. Old genetics was not superior simply because:

1) It was easy to consistently unlock Hulk within 5 minutes
2) It was simultaneously hard to manifest multiple powers that you might actually prefer compared to just being a wall/assistant punching douchebag
3) You could distribute powers en-masse with almost no effort just by spamming injectors and then tossing them into the medbay lobby, now that is very ineffective and doing hands-on manifestation in genetics is the best method which requires time, effort, and coordination between two players
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Miauw » Wed Oct 21, 2015 3:33 pm #128216

one thing that would improve genetics (what i mean here is "make more tolerable", not "fix any of the issues") is to add some more disabilities, of which only a few are picked every round. might be neat for traitor geneticists.

problem with superpowers is that there are little ideas for good ones.

the real problem is obviously that the genetics gameplay is pretty boring and rng-based, while all the rewards are fairly useless unless you want to validhunt or murderbone.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Helios » Wed Oct 21, 2015 3:54 pm #128221

A big thing is how you weigh the pros and cons of current level genetics.
Hulk is still great, but has been nerfed because it can no longer use double E-sword
X-ray has been always good, but rarely do the roles that could actually use it to full effect, get it. The rounds where security officers get X-ray, without anyone noticing are few and far between.
Cold Resistance is just a space suit, which as more have been added is less relevant. The monster update to mining also makes cold resistance less useful there as the hardsuit provides armor protection as well as space protection.
TK has been nerfed to the point of being useless in my book. TK + X-ray isn't a way of killing people through walls anymore. TK+ Hulk doesn't let you break walls that are far away, TK+ X-ray doesn't let you use computers. TK doesn't let you grab things if you are in cuffs. It's useful during blob, or killing somebody on the shuttle without getting caught, but that's about all the use I see out of it.
Chameleon is good, but still stays when you are dead/crit, unlike hulk. And when you have an invisible corpse, even if you are on the bridge nobody sees it, so it has a built in risk/reward
Shadowmeld is useless.

The big thing about power stacking is that the powers don't really have synergy anymore, beyond X-ray TK, and even then that amounts to throwing around lockers and spooking someone in a different room. Another big thing is that as Oldman mentioned, since injectors have such low render chances, genetics becomes more about giving abilities to other people instead of yourself, as if someone is skilled behind a computer they can give other people plenty of powers in a matter of seconds, while the geneticist themself has to wait for injectors which give them a pile of rads and fatigue damage.
The other half to this is, the sitting in front of a computer is very positive for genetics, as if geneticists were running around like scientists grabbing things, bodies would stay in front of genetics as long as a miner in front of R&D trying to drop off mienrals, which can be quite a long time.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Bluespace » Wed Oct 21, 2015 4:02 pm #128224

Miauw wrote:one thing that would improve genetics

Miauw wrote:add some more disabilities


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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Helios » Wed Oct 21, 2015 4:10 pm #128225

Miauw wrote:one thing that would improve genetics (what i mean here is "make more tolerable", not "fix any of the issues") is to add some more disabilities, of which only a few are picked every round. might be neat for traitor geneticists.

problem with superpowers is that there are little ideas for good ones.

the real problem is obviously that the genetics gameplay is pretty boring and rng-based, while all the rewards are fairly useless unless you want to validhunt or murderbone.

There's plenty of ideas for good ones.
Vent Crawling as a power.
Adamantine Claw, does 20 damage, use it to much and it calcifies turning your entire arm into an arm blade, fits in super power wise as well as with the changeling meta.
Hell, even just making people's sprite bigger, giving them extra health/punch damage
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby DemonFiren » Wed Oct 21, 2015 4:12 pm #128226

Same level as an e-dagger, please.

Also, ventcrawling with items on should be the Hulk equivalent for lizards.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Helios » Wed Oct 21, 2015 4:13 pm #128227

DemonFiren wrote:Also, ventcrawling with items on should be the Hulk equivalent for lizards.

100% agree with this as a change.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Incoming » Wed Oct 21, 2015 8:43 pm #128313

Ventcrawling with items is immensely powerful. It negates any barriers to enter nearly any part of the station. Ventcrawling is also a nearly undetectable act with no time limit. I'd take even naked ventcrawling over hulk any day of the week.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Helios » Wed Oct 21, 2015 8:45 pm #128314

Incoming wrote:Ventcrawling with items is immensely powerful. It negates any barriers to enter nearly any part of the station. Ventcrawling is also a nearly undetectable act with no time limit. I'd take even naked ventcrawling over hulk any day of the week.

Hulk negates barriers to enter nearly any part of the station. And nobody can hear you doing it if you take off your headset.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Incoming » Wed Oct 21, 2015 8:51 pm #128318

Hulk can't get you into the armory without walking past the warden, it can't get you out with all the guns, and it can't even let you use the guns.

Trust me on this, it's STRONG. You ever seen a sentient slime just rushing around the station jumping people out of vents then retreating before they can be be sprayed to death? It's terrifying, deadlier than a ninja in the right hands. It's one of the strongest one line changes you can give to any mob capable of attacking (besides enabling the GODMODE flag)
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby oranges » Wed Oct 21, 2015 9:38 pm #128335

Helios wrote:
Incoming wrote:Ventcrawling with items is immensely powerful. It negates any barriers to enter nearly any part of the station. Ventcrawling is also a nearly undetectable act with no time limit. I'd take even naked ventcrawling over hulk any day of the week.

Hulk negates barriers to enter nearly any part of the station. And nobody can hear you doing it if you take off your headset.

rubbish, there's a bloody great banging sound when a hulk knocks a wall down.
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Erbbu » Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:22 pm #128494

A good part of the other jobs (science in particular) already get some pretty OP shit unlocked in 10-15 minutes. I see no reason why genetics could not have that.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Super Aggro Crag » Thu Oct 22, 2015 3:14 pm #128508

people love to talk about hulk but i like the one that keeps you from freezing to death and x-ray vision
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Wyzack » Thu Oct 22, 2015 3:24 pm #128513

I think Oldman is right, any easier and it will be powerspam, any harder and it is tedious bullshit. Maybe the solution is to just add a shitload of minor powers instead of disabilities. Maybe stuff like letting you change your hairstyle at will, long fingernails and other stuff
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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Cheimon » Thu Oct 22, 2015 6:18 pm #128536

Or maybe the answer is to make it less about infinite resources and finding out how to do it, and more about knowing how to do it and using finite resources.

XCOM has this. You get a unique resource, meld, that you gather bit by bit. You then get to choose which body part you're changing (brain, eyes, bone structure, circulatory system, skin). You then have to choose between one of two ways to alter that body part. These have different pros and cons to them. In this game, it would probably mean something like: eyes, either thermal or night vision, requires a bar of plasma for either. Circulation, either super clotting (no blood loss) or secondary heart (much faster stamina recovery), two bars of plasma for either. Skin, either highly burn resistant or able to give chameleon invisibility, also costs plasma.

That sort of thing. The advantage of this system is that it forces players to make choices about who they want to be, and also means they can't give everyone superpowers. The disadvantage is that it's not as time gated, it's not as powerful necessarily, and it requires less skill.

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Re: Genetics is outdated and a chore to play.

Postby Miauw » Thu Oct 22, 2015 6:57 pm #128549

Bluespace wrote:
Miauw wrote:one thing that would improve genetics

Miauw wrote:add some more disabilities


-snip-

thanks for not reading my post at all, are you literally retarded?
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