Outpost ratings are killing desire to build

TragicSolitude Member, Alpha Surveyor Posts: 6,626

My Outpost with a rating of Dangerous gets lots of Raiders and tons of kills. My Outpost with a rating of Brutal gets almost no Raiders and mostly zero kills. I don't consider the Brutal one to be difficult, a lot of the traps are on the way to Forsaken Tombs, but the people playing Brutal levels speedrun them and only go for the GenMat. I can't even test against speedrunning because I don't have a shield and the grappling hook feels super awkward, I struggle for accuracy when I'm not rushed.

The Brutal level is getting almost no Raiders, but the timer is ticking down all the same. There's no in-game help with lowering the difficulty (not that it's actually a difficult Outpost). Getting it down to a Dangerous level would require removing traps and hoping the game actually lowers the rating properly (last time I tried doing that I had to crash the game because I altered/removed a bunch of stuff and it didn't help the rating; there's no "Cancel changes" option, there's no way to take snapshots of a layout so you can go back to a previous version if you mess something up, there are no offline versions of the map that can be edited with no repercussions, players are really discouraged from experimenting and having fun with their builds). Removing traps quickly made it pretty lame, too.

The game needs a smarter ratings system, something that can adjust based on more than just trap-placement math. If people are finishing the level in under 2 minutes and not dying once, maybe the rating should be adjusted down, no? Because, of the few people who have played through, most speedrun it, so they don't die nor do they leave Accolades. It's very discouraging. Why put effort into building anything if it's just going to be DOA, getting almost no Raiders and certainly no Prestige points?

I might as well just do the quickest cheapest Outposts possible for the passive GenMat, but at that point I'd rather uninstall.


  • wydyadoit
    wydyadoit Member Posts: 1,115
    edited April 2023

    the brutal and dangerous rating just tells how many overall traps there are out of the total available capacity. ive found that a lot of the time you can make a short and deadly map with only a few traps if you do it right.

    once new players have had a chance to learn the game (i've been grinding like crazy to see what's what) the longer and more meticulously thought out maps with higher numbers will likely become better for kills.

    the low capacity stuff gets hit with new raiders with less gear. but you can find maps that are technically death traps where once you realize the system (took me 80 tries on this one map) you can beat it speedrun style with almost no gear.

  • chezpizza
    chezpizza Member Posts: 120

    I'm having a similar issue with a new brutal map I built, seems like it's getting no players.

  • TragicSolitude
    TragicSolitude Member, Alpha Surveyor Posts: 6,626

    Yeah, the Outpost difficulty level is broken. My level is easy as crap (and I am not great at raiding, so that's saying something) but marked as Dangerous. I try adding another trap, it goes to Brutal. I try adding more traps off the path to the GenMat to make getting the totally optional Forsaken Tombs more challenging, it goes to Brutal. I tried putting a Holo Cube to hide the path to a Tomb and make it a bit more interesting (it's not hiding any traps), and that took it to Brutal.

    The traps are spread out, they're not all clustered into one or two rooms. Three guards in a very open room (so the player has choices on how to handle it) and the system treats it like I'm forcing the player into a death trap. And like I said, a bunch of traps/guards are going into completely optional areas.

    I'd like to create a fun map that people can't zipline through in less than 60 seconds (which they could do on the previous Brutal map) but will actually get Raiders (my last Brutal map got almost none, so I have to keep it at Dangerous), and I'm really feeling like my time is being wasted. The total amount of time spent by all raiders on this map is probably going to be less than what I spent building it. That's certainly how it went for my previous maps, and trying to do a better job with this Outpost is just costing me more time and effort and it will still probably get very few raiders who as a total spend very little time on it in comparison to how much time I spent on it.

    This is asinine. Fix this, BHVR.

  • TragicSolitude
    TragicSolitude Member, Alpha Surveyor Posts: 6,626

    Accidentally removed a cube from the ceiling and the difficulty level went from Dangerous to Brutal. Replacing it did not return it to Dangerous. Seriously, BHVR, is this working as intended?

    The game gives no help with the difficulty rating. It just does stuff secretly behind the scenes, not giving the builder any information on how to have the rating they're aiming for or if it's even working correctly. Because again, accidentally deleting a cube (which led out into the open, meaning someone could grapple in, immediately grab the GenMat, and grapple back out, avoiding any and all dangers) increased the difficulty rating, and with the game giving no clue as to why I basically have to watch the rating intently and immediately close out before it can auto-save if the rating changes.

  • TragicSolitude
    TragicSolitude Member, Alpha Surveyor Posts: 6,626

    I tested out my friend's map, he went back in and removed a trap, and his rating went from Dangerous to Brutal.

    He removed a trap from the main path and his rating went up. He then had to remove even more traps to get it back down to Dangerous. He just wanted to remove one trap and ended up having to remove four.

    Should this stuff be a bug report? Removing cubes and replacing them, simply removing cubes, and removing traps can change the rating from Dangerous to Brutal. The wall/ceiling cubes that were removed would have made the map easier, and removing a trap definitely made the map easier, so I really hope this is a bug that's going to be fixed.

    (Platform: PS4 Pro)

  • Ghorhammer
    Ghorhammer Member Posts: 9

    I don't actually worry about this.

    Is it arbitrary.....yes.

    Does it matter in the long run...no.

    Sure my brutal maps don't get as much traffic as my dangerous ones, but it doesn't cost more to reset them once they run out, and when people do run my Brutal maps, I get 9+ kills per run, even with doubles. So.....

    Yeah I don't think it matters.

  • TragicSolitude
    TragicSolitude Member, Alpha Surveyor Posts: 6,626

    My Brutal map got way fewer Raiders. It didn't get that many deaths, either; my Dangerous maps are deadlier. The Brutal one got a lot of focus on Tomb raiding, but no one goes for the Tombs, they all speedrun the Brutal map. Meanwhile, I see fewer speedrunners and more explorers on the Dangerous maps. Until BHVR fixes the ratings system or adds some info so Builders can understand and work within its parameters, I'm just leaving my Brutal map depleted, because both the number of players it got and the Replays I was able to watch (which weren't many, the Replays are broken as hell and hardly work) were extremely disappointing.

  • Seraphor
    Seraphor Member Posts: 8,601
    edited April 2023

    I've also notice that my Brutal outposts get way fewer raiders.

    I have three Dangerous that get around 10-15 raids for 20-50 deaths per day, while my two Brutal's are struggling to get 3 raids per day, with maybe 2-5 deaths in that bunch. One of them has failed to get 125 prestige points TWICE. They're clearly NOT brutal difficulty if they get 3 raids, two of which escape with no deaths.

    Now my best outpost, one of the Dangerous ones, is now Prestige 8 and I've noticed I was on the cusp of transitioning to Brutal. So I had a test of a few different traps/guards.

    • Adding any guard moved it up to Brutal
    • Adding one Incinerator, Bomb, Chain, Piston, Bolt trap or Holo Cube (why) moved it up to Brutal
    • Adding one Corrosive cube was fine, but two moved it to Brutal
    • Adding up to FIVE Spike traps was fine, but number six became Brutal.
      • However, if I placed a single Spike trap next to an existing trap, it was enough to move to Brutal all on it's own.

    Very strange, it would seem that dotting random spike traps around the place in random or unexpected places would be the most economic way of maintaining difficulty rating.

    Post edited by Seraphor on
  • Seraphor
    Seraphor Member Posts: 8,601
    edited April 2023

    And now I've just tried to build a large outpost. 3500 capacity, with everything spread out.

    It became Brutal at about 2000 capacity used, with 6 guards (4 enforcers and 2 bombers) and technically 4 traps (each composed of about 3-4 individual traps).

    Not a single part of this outpost is difficult, but because holo cubes and chain traps are apparently 'super hard', and I have multiple traps in close proximity, it's classed as brutal unless I remove a few traps.

    You can literally just run straight through the whole outpost. Not grapple, not deflect or speed spike. Just run. It's ridiculously easy, but I can't add any more traps to make it any harder unless I condemn it to die in Brutal with zero raids.

    You need to reduce the rating scores of holocubes and chains. These don't do anything in isolation, they need to be paired with other traps. But pairing high rated traps seems to amplify their impact.

  • Ilya_Lizard
    Ilya_Lizard Member Posts: 26


    I would like to put a couple of words about the difficulty and base rating calculation. As much, as I understood, there are a bunch of considerations about how the trap count affects the overall outpost difficulty rating. First, it's not a trap by itself, but how many squares of space it covers - it's why impalers, by themselves, are so "cheap" in means of difficulty. Second, its "trap\volume intensity" - like, how many traps cover a single room or corridor (or even square space). A very basic shooting trap can cost its weight in gold when you put it to cover the only exit of an "L" shaped space, where one of the parts is heavily trapped already. From what I learned, holograms also get an extra cost too if they are close to some "active" trap - like arrows or grifter + impaler.

    Interesting that guards are generally very cheap in means of difficulty rating. So many times I was able to put an additional guard to some boring section of the outpost after any other trap in the intensive areas immediately made the difficulty skyrocket.

    Overall, for me current difficulty formula feels quite adequate - it surely allows you to build bases with K/D of ~2 efficiency (with is totally ok for normal outposts) and higher K/D for dangerous ones. (I call it "K/D" - but of course, in this case, it's actually "kill to raid")

    Of cause, those are my speculations, and I have experience only with "normal"/"dangerous" outposts, but I did a lot of alterations to my dungeons and checked many possible combinations.

  • Seraphor
    Seraphor Member Posts: 8,601

    This would make sense, however my experience with guards is a little different. They seem to bump the rating up by more than any of the 'single square' traps.

    I still feel like special considerations should be given to holo cubes and claws, as they're non-lethal and only enhance other traps. Especially because it seems claws are rated for the area they cover, and holo cubes also presumably are rated for their detection range and not the single cube they occupy.

  • Hodderfodder
    Hodderfodder Member Posts: 164

    I'm having the reverse experience where my dangerous outposts are getting next to no traffic.

  • Seraphor
    Seraphor Member Posts: 8,601

    Strangely, my aforementioned 'Brutal' outpost that had virtually no traffic, I stripped and redesigned as a 'Dangerous' one. It still got no traffic. So it's not just because it was Brutal, there's something else in play and it may be the size. After all, 'Large' burial sites are more likely to reach Brutal status.

  • Seraphor
    Seraphor Member Posts: 8,601
    edited April 2023

    Ok this is ridiculous. Apparently adding basic blocks increases difficulty rating as well.

    I manage to tweak an outpost to where it was right on the cusp of Dangerous/Brutal, then proceeded to fill out the outpost with bricks so it didn't look like a complete mess.

    Somewhere along the way it crossed over into Brutal and now I can't get it back.

  • TragicSolitude
    TragicSolitude Member, Alpha Surveyor Posts: 6,626

    Yup. Sometimes the algorithm decides that this one wall cube I replaced is somehow more dangerous than 3+ traps, because that's what it takes to get the Outpost back down to Dangerous: deleting a bunch of traps.

  • Seraphor
    Seraphor Member Posts: 8,601
    edited April 2023

    Also just found rating changes on it's own.

    I left an outpost on Dangerous and activated it, came back the next day and it was rated Brutal. Didn't get many raids.

    So now you can't even make a Dangerous outpost, you have to make it Normal in case it randomly jumps up a grade.