Wrong item Rarity for new set?

Discussion in 'Bugs' started by PhoenixTheHunter, Aug 12, 2022.

  1. As far as my understanding goes, the rarity of an item is directly linked to the cards that are put on the item. At least that was the case until the new set came out. So, what is going on with Ancient Seal, Grinding Raiment, Ikari's Gauntlet, Pazu's Profane Pledge, Sweltering Lantern, Transcendent Asceticism, and Trusty Tetsubo? Are they assigned the wrong rarity? Or do they introduce a new era of "special" (aka arbitrary) item rarities? Or is there SOME argument for their rarity that would still create a rule set that held true for both the old and the new items?
    Sir Veza likes this.
  2. doublequartz

    doublequartz Lizardman Priest

    FYI Grinding Raiment and Sweltering Lantern was changed between initial testing and release. I think the latter change was unnecessary though.

    Rarity exists to ensure that item acquisition lead to more deckbuilding possibilities, and this increase in possibilities should happen at roughly constant rate. In this scheme, common items are meant to be straightforward and easy to understand, while rarer items open up bigger design spaces.

    Unfortunately, this scheme did not work all that well in a competitive multiplayer game(probably the reason for crafting). Opponents can use arbitrarily complex strategy, so there is no way to really defer learning. Another problem is that the power curve is never flat, we avoided the P(ay/lay)2W trap only by a slight margin.

    Basing item rarity on card rarity is useful because items are made up of cards. Ideally, the rarity calculator should tell how unique an item is, how much possibility it opens up. However, uniqueness of an item is not determined just by what the cards do. Current rarity rule has a focus factor(3/4/6 of same cards give higher rarity), but it is missing availability factor. An item is more unique when it has cards you can't get (as many) from other items, or if other options require other slots or more power tokens.

    To accommodate for the missing availability factor, some cards has been assigned arbitrary rarity in the past. At some point however, the devs figured out this was not a good idea. I assume this is why they are using manually-set rarity more liberally.

    Still, it might be useful to reify availability factor into rarity rules. Slot-dependent card rarity would solve a lot of problems. For example, if we made Curse-Hardened, Vow Of Poverty and Immovable Rare outside of their respective slots, these rarities would be neatly explained. Even more exceptions could be eliminated, if we also marked some cards as scarce so that cards like Silver Bolt, Berserk Spin, Battleaxe Block, and Grinding Aura would require less copies to receive rarity boost. All of this would add a strictly unnecessary complexity to the game though, so I'm fine with this being or not being done.

    Ancient Seal and Trusty Tetsubo is only items I think should be moved back into their regular rarities.
    fatcat__25 likes this.
  3. So, let's unpack this:
    There's no reason not to, if playtesting suggests that items aren't balanced (whatever that is).
    Since when? And what exactly does that mean at all? Rarity is about how often some items drop. Deckbuilding is mainly about how long you played / how much money you spent. Players that played for longer or spent more will have more options for deckbuilding as they collected more items in total.
    Again, what? There is an aspect that happens at constant rate and that is the number of copies you got of a specific item. But I'm sure you didn't mean that.
    I always forget whether a card's rarity or its quality (title color) is about the concept difficulty, but that sounds about right. But, either way, this is about cards, not items, although (assuming that item rarity was bound to card rarity) this would consequently translate to items.
    That's because rarity was never used to limit MP deckbuilding, quality (by means of power tokens) was. As I said, over time you collect more (rarer) items, but no-one is limited in terms of deck rarity, you can both run a complete Common deck and a complete Legendary deck. That alone shows that rarity is no limiting factor. Never was and probably never will be.
    This is a quality problem, too, not a rarity one. Because conceptionally a rare card of some quality should not be more powerful than a common card of the same quality. Don't make me check all the new items for their Level because given that the rarities don't match, the levels probably won't, too.
    Well, one could argue either way... ;)
    You're right, ideally it should. But it never did! So, EVEN IF that was the reason for the new items to have arbitrary rarities, that would be a complete break in tradition. And in my eyes, for the worse. Especially in regards to crafting, because crafting costs is all about item rarity. So, messing with item rarity makes crafting unfair.
    Yes, cards that weren't available to players pretty much had arbitrary rarities because it didn't matter for the player and the AI would use this information for its decisions. But, Cards have "custom" qualities based on the type of item they are put on, but the rarity was always the same. On items, though, there is the concept of custom rarities. But so far - meaning before expansion 7 - it was possible to retro fit a formula that perfectly matches all assigned custom rarities. That means, that even if BM/TKOU never used this exact function, they could have going forward, as this would be a fair/predictable system. Rather than caprice.
    Then, let me rephrase my initial question: Why did they, out of the blue?
    In which way would it? In theory, the players never get to see how items are defined and why they are the way they are. Even the game server doesn't have to. You do these calculations once and save it in some file. It's only because I have - let's say for the lack of a better term - reverse-engineered a lot of details out of curiosity or because I needed such details for the utils I took over. The least complexity would be, to randomly assign each item's rarity, but clearly BM/TKOU were willing to spend a bit more effort.
    And: If the availability of a card would influence the rarity of the items that contain this card, then every new set of items/cards would automatically have to change all item rarities and that is in general a bad idea. And Flaxative agrees with me on this one, in one of the linked discussions. So, availability probably should never be of ANY relevance for an item's rarity.

    To summarize this a bit, I don't mind if we stop relying on old traditions, but then, make it consistent. Then, change every item - including the older ones - and apply some new definition altogether. As I said, ESPECIALLY in regards to crafting, we need a consistent rarity system for items. Because mis-classified items means advantages/disadvantages for some players. But the way these items deviate from the norm, so to speak, makes no sense at all.
    And, rarity is completely irrelevant for MP. So, playtesting is a bad argument for why the rarity of all things got set to arbitrary values. (Probably the reason, why cards don't have type-specific rarities in the first place. But I wouldn't mind if they had, to be honest, but then for all cards equally.)

    So, honestly thanks doublequartz for the efforts of writing up all this. But this doesn't convince me yet that the arbitrary rarities were a good idea. And some arguments - from my point of view - are just factually wrong in this context. Rarity has nothing to do with MP balancing.

    And: Nice try to link all the new cards and items. But the wiki being outdated somewhat defeats the purpose here. ;)
    Sir Veza, doublequartz and fatcat__25 like this.
  4. doublequartz

    doublequartz Lizardman Priest

    I'm sure you've brought this concern with good intentions, but it seems like there has been some misunderstanding, so let me follow up on this.

    Yes, rare cards are not intended to be stronger. In reality though, Card Hunter is balanced by human game designer within the limit of the game rules, as well as older contents that cannot be easily changed at this point, so some rare cards are stronger than common card of the same quality as it happens. This is never going to be completely fixed. I argue crafting is added to alleviate this problem by making rare items easier to obtain.

    I was not talking about monster-only cards. I'm talking about cards like Able Bludgeon and Trained Bludgeon. See how these cards does the same thing? Then why are one of them Rare while the other is Common?
    My guess: they assigned Able Bludgeon coveted Rare rating because someone at BM wanted Bruising Dervish be a legendary. What's arbitrary if this isn't? None of this has to do with how unique Able Bludgeon is. It's likely that this approach did not scale well into newer sets.

    Again, I did not suggest this. My suggestion was to add some columns into Cards.csv such that cards could have different rarities based on the type of item they are put on. Further extensions to Cards.csv can be imagined though they become increasingly difficult to justify.

    I know well wiki is in need of a rework. Nevertheless it's the standard way to refer to cards and items in this forum, so I'm using it due diligence in case/to make TKOU fix those links.
    fatcat__25 and Sir Veza like this.
  5. Of course, and that's also the reason why I love to participate in those discussions (like this one) because the only thing that can come out of them - if any - is improvements to the game. And if I wouldn't like to see CH improve, I wouldn't play it.
    Yes, I know. And I'm also aware of the fact that we only have three levels of rarity for cards, so even if the rarity of all cards was "perfect", we could still argue about it. Because even if one individual accepts a distribution, the other might not agree that two cards are valued either the same or differently. There aren't many shades of rarity to disinguish nuances. And also yes, historically rarity wasn't completely objective, and probably - for that reason - still isn't, because new cards must still work well with those old cards, so a "wrong" rarity on an old card can cause a "wrong" rarity on a new card. But if we are willing to accept, that we have to live with mis-classified old cards, then we should at the same time say, that we can also live with the old rules about item rarity, or not? And I know that aspects like power creep can really screw with a game if the devs aren't careful or made bad decisions early on.
    Well, I'd like to differ on this one. The thing is that - as long as item rarity is bound to card rarity - obtaining a Legendary or Epic set of boots by means of item drops or shops is probably only maginally more difficult than obtaining the same boots with crafting. And for Rare items, crafting might not really be helpful at all. Because you still need the involved rare cards for your Epic or Legendary items. And collecting them is still a game of luck. But you not only need to be lucky once (for the item drop or the shop restock, and shops restock each day/once per week, so free retries without even having to actually play), but you have to find several rare cards. And you probably don't want to buy and sacrifize a Legendary item to craft a Rare one, so, I'd ague that crafting was mainly introduced because the community asked for this feature pretty much since day one. That said, is anyone still using Skarl's Seconds, or are all players hoarding items now to use them as fodder for crafting?
    I know, but for monster-only cards the situation was even more ridiculous back in the days. But I think I've said enough about that topic already.
    I'm not arguing with you on this one. Sure, rarities (and qualities for that matter) can seem arbitrary. But, are you suggesting that just because the initial batch of cards wasn't up to modern standards, that we should introduce new and more forms of arbitrariness with each new set of items and cards? That can't be the solution either, or can it?
    Well, some parts of your post suggested to me that this might be a viable option from your point of view. But apparently, I mis-read this. Sorry for that, I don't want to put words on your mouth. But for the other part, yes, I could see fields like "Rarity Wizard" be possible in the cards-file. Although, on second thought, I'm not sure if this works at all with the assumption that the rarity should reflect the conceptional complexity. Either, the concept of a card is easy to grasp, or it isn't. The exact item this card is on shouldn't change the complexity of a card. And if the only purpose of such a new field would be to create items with "abnormal" rarities, then adding a field wouldn't really improve the situation we have right now. The same could be said about the custom Qualities, but they make perfect sense to me. A (strong) melee attack on a staff is more valuable than on a (divine) weapon. So... I don't know. But I can say with confidence that I never particularly liked the formula for item rarity. It's just rhe one - I thought - we are/were stuck with.
    The wiki is a fan project for the most part. The Knights can't (or let's say shouldn't, like you are discouraged from editing your own Wikipedia entry if you have one) fix that themselves.

    A few examples, why mis-classified items are bad for crafting:
    • if an item is rarer than it should be, then you will have a harder time to obtain the contained cards by means of drops and shops, makign it harder to craft any other items that share cards with the mis-classified one.
    • if an item is more common than it should be, than its cards become easier to obtain. Especially if this item is now classified below Rare (meaning having rare cards, but being classified as (un-)common), that means that originally hard to obtain cards become more mundane. Hence, effectivly devaluing every item with this card that still is technically Rare or higher
    • If you want to buy an item as a crafting fodder, mis-classified items mean that you have to spent more or less gold on it and will get a different deduction while crafting. effectively stealing gold from some and giving free gold (in credits/discounts) to others.
    • If you want to craft a mis-classified item, you will have to pay more or less gold for the actual crafting than normally. But then again, given that rarer items shouldn't be more powerful, I never really understood why rarer items were that much more expensive in the first place.
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2022
    fatcat__25, Sir Veza and doublequartz like this.
  6. Sir Veza

    Sir Veza Farming Deity

    Seeing Arcane Feedback on a weapon leads me to suspect some at KTOU have kinda missed the point. As do class skills on other items or for other classes.
    Owner's prerogative, of course.
  7. doublequartz

    doublequartz Lizardman Priest

    Indeed, this kind of mechanism wouldn't work at all if rarity reflected conceptional complexity and nothing else. My suggestion is still about making availability part of rarity rules.

    Immovable is a card normally found on Boots and Dwarf Skills. Transcendent Asceticism introduced it on Divine Skill slot for the first time. I think Transcendent Asceticism deserves a higher rarity because it's the only way to get Immovable on a Divine Skill. By giving Transcendent Asceticism higher rarity, developers are making an implicit promise that they will not print more Divine Skills with Immovable. This promise should be easy enough to uphold.

    I absolutely would go and edit the wiki, but I cannot since wiki admin is gone for years. Everyone else is locked out because authentication is not updated from goddamn ReCaptcha 1. But apparently TKOU owns the domain, so it should be possible for them to fix it.
    fatcat__25 likes this.
  8. Well, before we - as in, the community - can make any statements about rarities (whether for cards or items), we had to know, what the rarity is meant to represent. As I said, initially the idea was complexity (the actual meaning might have varied from the beginning). But in case this has changed now, epecially under the new leadership, and there is a new interpretation, then talking about this issue with our old understanding in mind won't yield any meaningful answers.
    Didn't you claim just the other day that availability wasn't a criterion you were thinking about? Or are we speaking of two different "availabilities" here?
    See, the cards-file has a Slots-column but that never got used on any meaningful way. Because usually I would support Sir Veza in the general statement that cards should have targeted slots and only very rarely (ideally never) be put on any other slot. And I don't know if I get why Immovable is on an Asceticism skill.
    But it's not the only way to get it on a Priest. Just go with a dwarf priest. There are only two pure movement cards that can be on Weapons, and none on Staves and Divine Weapons. So... Does that mean anything? They just don't belong there, and putting them on there is not a "rarity" but a mistake.
    Seing, that there is only little that we can actually count on, I wouldn't be surprised if this happened again. And that this situation can be viewed as an implicit promise in the first place is already an interpretation, not something we could know.
    PS: Is the fact, that no thief has ever broken into my home to steal stuff, an implicit promise that that would stay that way forever? I think that this would be very naive and I would be extremely careful with (assuming) anything implicit.
    Well, in theory yes... In reality, upholding a general item rarity formula seemed just as easy...
    Oh, didn't know that. Now I'm a bit wiser.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2022
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