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The Halo 3 aftermath thread


Meers

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So are you saying that this situation could happen:

Let's say a melee takes off 10 points of health. I have 3 points left, and my opponent has 5 left.

I melee my opponent first

My opponent melees me quickly straight after I press the button

He therefore saves his own life, because despite both our melees connecting, he has more health and so I die and he doesn't.

Is that right? Cos that would be a bit weird. I'd expect either for him to die, or for us both to die. But not for him to be able to "undo" my melee by launching one of his own.

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Is it not the case then that should two people, who's shields have both been depleted to the point that a melee would be fatal, won't both die if they melee at the same time?

No, whoever has the most shield/health survives, there's no 'I kill you/you kill me' thing going on. Even if you were both at death's door and player one lands the killing blow first, if player two lands one a split second later and has a pixel more shield than player one, player two lives, player one dies even though he landed a blow powerful enough to kill first.

It's lame.

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I can see how, having mastered one system, the new rules could be a bit of a pisser. Is it not the case then that should two people, who's shields have both been depleted to the point that a melee would be fatal, won't both die if they melee at the same time?

My issue is, if I melee a guy and he 'should' have died, it's annoying for him to hit me afterwards (sometimes 0.5 sec+) and I die instead.

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No, whoever has the most shield/health survives, there's no 'I kill you/you kill me' thing going on. Even if you were both at death's door and player one lands the killing blow first, if player two lands one a split second later and has a pixel more shield than player one, player two lives, player one dies even though he landed a blow powerful enough to kill first.

It's lame.

How long is this "split second", the period in which a person that is now theoretically dead, can rescue themselves by meleeing the other person? Is it the ping time?

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The thing with the new melee system is that it does sound stupid when you explain the mechanics, but when you understand how it works online you can see the logic. It unquestionably results in bullshit, but it's predictable bullshit, and it's more equal for everyone. Previously, melee encounters were won by whoever had host. It wasn't whoever actually meleed first at all, because network conditions mean that the person who meleed first may have meleed second by the time the host's machine works it all out.

So the new system mitigates host advantage, which any Halo player can tell you was a huge problem with 2. At the same time it introduces problems. Meleeing becomes something of a last resort measure. You have to assume when entering a melee encounter that your shields will be removed regardless of whether you were quicker and therefore if there's anyone else about then going for a melee will usually mean you die. I still think it's probably better to put up with that because the overall result is fairer, and less dependent on host advantage.

The thing about melee that does annoy me is the fact that there's no differentiated damage for different weapons and momentum anymore. A light tap with a Needler should not do as much damage as jumping down on someone and smacking them with a Brute Shot.

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Is that true? I really felt like I was getting more powerful melees when jumping down on someone with the AR than I did with needlers or SMGs. Probably just the sound effects then.

On Epitaph, I used the rocket grav-lift and caught a guy waiting on the platform. I hit him with the gravity hammer from above and the platform tilted almost vertical as a result. It was a deeply satisfying beatdown, if not quite what you are on about.

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It's lame.

Yeah it is. Hadn't realised that this was the case, but I can see why they did it, because this sounds worse.

Previously, melee encounters were won by whoever had host. It wasn't whoever actually meleed first at all, because network conditions mean that the person who meleed first may have meleed second by the time the host's machine works it all out.
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that's excellent Soi, I'll run those tests later. I think most people understand that it's the physical distance that causes the most lag-based problems rather than the width of the pipe.

I’ve added your results to the NTSC thread.

So what's the maximum download/upload speed you should need for a smooth game of Halo? Was the old broadband standard of 512K connections back in the Halo 2 days actually more than enough? Is the upload speed that most UK ISPs offer more than enough if you're not hosting?

Presumably the voice-chat takes up a lot of the 'pipe'. Are 4v4 games, with their open voice-chat, likely to be more laggy than 5v5 (press-to-speak) because of the voice-chat? Or does it really all come down to physical distance?

One thing I can't understand is why, when I play co-op with my mate down the road, it's fairly sluggish, and pauses frequently. Surely we both have good enough connections to handle all the data going back and forth?

I don’t have numbers, but if you are not hosting, then your upload will always be enough. You only have to upload your own data, which isn’t great. The only situation where I’ve sent the bandwidth of non-hosts having any effect is in very large co-op games (e.g. 16 player Coop GRAW). I’m certain that the amount of drop-outs in such games is because in this situation, not only must the host send a huge amount of data (the coop data for 16 people), but each player much also download that data.

As to your coop point, perhaps you have good enough connections, perhaps you don’t. The service that your ISP gives you is not constant. At busy times, it is possible that you don’t get anything like what they say they sell you. Then again, he might have a crap line (e.g. lots of errors), a crap ISP or his other half may have been uploading pictures to Facebook… Who knows.

You could try getting him to find his ISP address and then pinging it. If the ping is good, then you should be fine

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Melee. Repeating myself from upthread, but:

Since it's based on whoever has the lowest shields, in a one-on-one there may as well be no melee button, as you could just keep shooting each other and there would be the same outcome (unless one of you has, say a rocket launcher). Why? Well, since most close to medium range one-on-ones involve combinations of Battle Rifle and Assault Rifle, continuing to shoot will sort the scrap out in much the same way (the one with the lowest shields will still die, all else being equal). And by shooting, rather than meleeing, you won't definitely lose all your shields if you win.

However, if you have a Battle Rifle equipped and they have an Assault Rifle, and you have closed in on each other, dashing in and meleeing* would be worth it, as you're at a disadvantage if you continue shooting. This means that you've got to make all sorts of calculations about whether it's best to dash in depending on range, weapons and so on; nothing wrong with that, but the considerations are very different from those in campaign and previous Halo games, and I don't think they make as much sense.

It also means - in a one-on-one situation - that you have to quickly melee when you think your opponent is about to, or else you will almost certainly die.

I can see why Bungie changed it, but it's gone from unfair-shit to stupid-shit.

*except if they continue firing as you dash in, which is easier with an Assault Rifle than head-shotting with a Battle Rifle, you're probably stuffed anyway.

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Meh, it's not perfect but it's not as dramatic as you say. In lower level play people run towards each other all the time with the trigger held down on the Assault Rifle and then bash as they get in range. Some people never get out of this habit and end up getting to a point where they are torn apart every match. I think this system (accidentally perhaps) encourages people to progress from bullet hosing to positioning, teamwork, aiming and headshots. It encourages you not to get into close combat and dirty 1 on 1s unless you have a powerful short range weapon. It also encourages team play and covering each other. A couple of Battle Rifle shots into someone as they are running into your teammate will more often than not turn the tide of that encounter. It's just a different way of playing.

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Meh, it's not perfect but it's not as dramatic as you say. In lower level play people run towards each other all the time with the trigger held down on the Assault Rifle and then bash as they get in range. Some people never get out of this habit and end up getting to a point where they are torn apart every match. I think this system (accidentally perhaps) encourages people to progress from bullet hosing to positioning, teamwork, aiming and headshots. It encourages you not to get into close combat and dirty 1 on 1s unless you have a powerful short range weapon. It also encourages team play and covering each other. A couple of Battle Rifle shots into someone as they are running into your teammate will more often than not turn the tide of that encounter. It's just a different way of playing.

Sure, teamwork and all that, but in basic Slayer games, the smaller maps result in constant close-up encounters. There's not much you can do to avoid it if your opponents charge towards you. And if they don't, well it's a longer range encounter, you're slugging it out with Battle Rifles and Brute Shots, and melee is irrelevant anyway. Also, your argument seems to boil down to "it's good that the melee system is like this, as it will put people off using it!"

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Sure, teamwork and all that, but in basic Slayer games, the smaller maps result in constant close-up encounters. There's not much you can do to avoid it if your opponents charge towards you. And if they don't, well it's a longer range encounter, you're slugging it out with Battle Rifles and Brute Shots, and melee is irrelevant anyway. Also, your argument seems to boil down to "it's good that the melee system is like this, as it will put people off using it!"

Look, when you use a melee in a one on one situation, you're pretty much convinced "I'm gonna win this". Both players probably think the same. At least now they have a better idea of whether they will win an encounter like that or not.

In basic slayer you can get a shotgun/mauler on Guardian/smaller maps and stay up close and personal. A well thrown grenade will turn the tide of a 1 on 1.

If you play slayer by running into another person, drilling the AR and meleeing then you are never going to win. Even if everyone was doing the same thing and no one threw any grenades, chances are you might win by 1 or 2 points. You will have a lot of deaths.

It encourages better play. Getting in close with the AR on your own and meleeing expecting to win the encounter is not good play.

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Look, when you use a melee in a one on one situation, you're pretty much convinced "I'm gonna win this". Both players probably think the same. At least now they have a better idea of whether they will win an encounter like that or not.

In basic slayer you can get a shotgun/mauler on Guardian/smaller maps and stay up close and personal. A well thrown grenade will turn the tide of a 1 on 1.

If you play slayer by running into another person, drilling the AR and meleeing then you are never going to win. Even if everyone was doing the same thing and no one threw any grenades, chances are you might win by 1 or 2 points. You will have a lot of deaths.

It encourages better play. Getting in close with the AR on your own and meleeing expecting to win the encounter is not good play.

If I understand right, you're recommending staying away from opponents unless you have a shotgun or mauler? Is that right? If so, I wouldn't argue with you on that point. But, if you have either of those weapons, you're better off continuing to shoot if you're at point-blank range, unless you need to reload. So it's only worth melee-ing in very specific situations (you're out of ammo or for some reason they turn their back to you); otherwise you'd be bonkers not to use the best thing you've got - the up-close specialist weapon.

I'd disagree about the "no close range with the AR" point - but it depends what starting range we're talking about of course. Certainly, there's no point in running from mid-long range if your opponent has a better weapon at that range. But on the tighter Slayer maps, encounters often begin at close range (they're lurking around a corner, or they leap down from a higher platform, etc.).

In my experience people either keep their distance (using the mid-range weapons) or they get up close with the Assault Rifle. That's what I see happening, in general, presumably because I often run into people who haven't yet picked up a different weapon. In this situation, there's little point in melee-ing IMO in most cases. Except there is, because you actually have to melee if the other person does it; if you don't, you're certainly dead. But that's not a very fun gaming situation ("it's a bad tactic to melee, but if my opponent does it, I have to respond in kind").

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I guess - in my long-winded post above - what I'm asking is....

"describe a non-esoteric situation where it's a good idea to melee"*.

I think you've argued against melee-ing, which basically backs up my point that there are few situations where it's worth melee-ing now. Finding yourself directly behind the other person or having run out of ammo being the main ones.

*leaving the melee-specific weapons - the sword and hammer - aside, for obvious reasons.

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This sounds flip, but actually I'm just trying to learn. Stiff, if I've just spawned, and I've got an AR, and I'm on, say, Guardian, and I find myself in a one-on-one, what's the best tactic here? I'll usually throw a grenade first, but then I resort to running towards them, pulsing the assault rifle, and then a melee - a tactic you've just said is innefective at higher levels (I'm not in the least surprised). What should I do instead? Try to keep away from them a bit? Jump over them if they close in for the melee? etc? Thanks.

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If I understand right, you're recommending staying away from opponents unless you have a shotgun or mauler? Is that right? If so, I wouldn't argue with you on that point. But, if you have either of those weapons, you're better off continuing to shoot if you're at point-blank range, unless you need to reload. So it's only worth melee-ing in very specific situations (you're out of ammo or for some reason they turn their back to you); otherwise you'd be bonkers not to use the best thing you've got - the up-close specialist weapon.

Surely you'd use the 'shoot/melee' one-two punch with those weapons. It's by far the best way to get kills given the slow rate of fire of the shottie and mauler. It's even better under the new melee rules, as a close-up blast with either of these weapons will reduce your opponent's shields far more than an AR or similar, meaning you'll win every encounter (this is all assuming your first shot doesn't kill them instantly).

The melee is still very useful for situations where you know you've got their shields lower than yours - you're guaranteed to win the encounter, no matter what the latency.

If you end up in a close encounter and all you have is an AR, it's best to soften them with a 'nade, then try to keep them at arms length and continue shooting. The AR just doesn't have the power to guarantee a win if you both go in for the melee.

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