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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » What is twitch-based combat?

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  Castillle

Forum Bunny

Joined: 10/24/10
Posts: 2681

 
OP  7/22/11 12:18:31 PM#1

I was reading the thread about perfect MMORPG combat but I got confuzzled on the first page when someone said that a lot of ppl were going offtopic n stuff! >.<

 

I ask this cuz like...I could play something like Tactics Ogre or Fire Emblem and that is NOT twitch at all.  Same with Wild Arms or like...Dragon Quest! 

Those arent twitch cuz theyre like..Turn based n stuff!

 

But when I think of games like WoW, Allods, or City of Heroes,  I find it quite...Twitchy!

WoW = Knowing when to use Feign Death when someone targets you in pvp.  In pve, be proactive and use it every now and then when you think youre doing too much damage.

 

City of Heroes = Knowing when to use your skills.  Such as when someone gets held and you have to un-hold them or when theres suddenly an annoying enemy and you have to stun/hold them quickly before it burns away your endurance or somefing.

 

Now...All those I find twitchy but in a different way. 

 

So what would be considered "Twitch based" ?  And to help me understand I decided to add a list of games that I hope people can help me put into a "twitch based" and "non-twitch based" list

 

  • Tera
  • DCUO
  • World of Warcraft
  • Age of Conan
  • Champions Online
  • Dragonica
  • Fable 3
  • Ragnarok Online
  • All Points Bulletin
  • League of Legends
 
Any help is much appreciated o.o

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  User Deleted
7/22/11 12:21:44 PM#2

I think it means manual aiming / targeting / attacking

 

instead of auto aiming / tab targeting / auto attack

 

thats my take on it at least.

  GrumpyMel2

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/24/09
Posts: 1824

7/22/11 12:41:12 PM#3
Originally posted by jado818

I think it means manual aiming / targeting / attacking

 

instead of auto aiming / tab targeting / auto attack

 

thats my take on it at least.

I'm going to disagree with that, tab based targeting systems can be just as "twitch" or more then FPS systems. If you've ever seen someone button mashing in a typical console fighting game that becomes readly apparent.

"Twitch" is more based on combat pacing and how important reaction speed is then the targeting style.

For example, in a traditional tab targeting based MMO, if a boss fires off a particular ability and the system expects you to hit a reactive ability on your hot-bar within a fraction of a second of that happening or you take massive damage then that would be pretty darn "twitch" based despite the fact it was tab targeting & auto-attack.

By contrast, if you have a FPS style game (like WWII Online or Brothers in Arms) where players are moving at a reasonably slow (and more realistic) pace and you have plenty of time to aim and line up your shots....then that might well be far less "twitch" based then the combat systems in many traditional MMO's.

Alot of FPS style games, rightfully, are labled as "twitch" based because they allow for movement at unrealistic speeds and unrealistic manner. That's why things like the infameous "bunny hop" have become standard tactics in them.... while in reality someone attempting that wouldn't last 3 seconds on a battlefield.

  AIMonster

Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/31/08
Posts: 2016

7/22/11 12:46:48 PM#4

It's just a derogatory term people use for combat that relies more heavily on skill (manual aiming like in a FPS or fighting game style combat systems) than gear checks and hidden randomization (like most RPGs which are based off pen and paper games like D&D).  Most of the people who use the term regularly do not like that type of combat, and think people who do have ADHD or are some type of modern gamer who is some sort of cracked out adrenaline junkie.

In reality we all have our preferences, and traditionally we've been doing the old school pen and paper thing for decades now, so it's about time we starting getting more "twitch" based combat in our MMOs, especially now that technology allows it.  I'd also love to see some good turn based impletations (turn turn based here, like Atlantica Online or even Dofus - but higher quality here like Fire Emblem, X-COM, Jagged Alliance, etc.) because we've just been using the one system translated into a video game for real time combat for decades now.

Raptr link because it's the cool new trend:

  User Deleted
7/22/11 12:49:54 PM#5

Twitching = aiming, as far as I can make out the argument.

 

Some folks want an icon metagame.  That's 'skill' to them.  Some folks want to aim.

 

I can't see what's 'twitch' about it.  Somewhere between hitscan and headshot is probably the sweet spot.

  User Deleted
7/22/11 12:52:14 PM#6
Originally posted by GrumpyMel2
Originally posted by jado818

I think it means manual aiming / targeting / attacking

 

instead of auto aiming / tab targeting / auto attack

 

thats my take on it at least.

I'm going to disagree with that, tab based targeting systems can be just as "twitch" or more then FPS systems. If you've ever seen someone button mashing in a typical console fighting game that becomes readly apparent.

"Twitch" is more based on combat pacing and how important reaction speed is then the targeting style.

For example, in a traditional tab targeting based MMO, if a boss fires off a particular ability and the system expects you to hit a reactive ability on your hot-bar within a fraction of a second of that happening or you take massive damage then that would be pretty darn "twitch" based despite the fact it was tab targeting & auto-attack.

By contrast, if you have a FPS style game (like WWII Online or Brothers in Arms) where players are moving at a reasonably slow (and more realistic) pace and you have plenty of time to aim and line up your shots....then that might well be far less "twitch" based then the combat systems in many traditional MMO's.

Alot of FPS style games, rightfully, are labled as "twitch" based because they allow for movement at unrealistic speeds and unrealistic manner. That's why things like the infameous "bunny hop" have become standard tactics in them.... while in reality someone attempting that wouldn't last 3 seconds on a battlefield.

 

I can see your point.. i mean after all i played ffxi for years and that had a great "twitch" tab target system imo

 

but I don't think it lives up to the level of a manual aiming twitch system.

  arieste

Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/11/04
Posts: 3308

7/22/11 12:55:44 PM#7

Traditionally, the "RPG model" of skill use elimintates the need for any dexterity or any physical skill on the player's part.  The only facility required is mental - that is "the ability to decide which skill the character should perform next".  This puts all RPG players on the same basis.  

 

Most of today's game do require some very basic coordination such as moving your character while deciding on the next skill to use at the same time, however, this is so basic that it really yields no advantage to a particularly dexterous person.

 

When we start talking about twich gameplay, what is meant is the involment of the player's dexterity giving that player an advantage.  For example - being able to hit buttons faster than another player, being able to aim with the mouse more accurately than anohter, being able to execute complex sequences of button-presses faster and more accurately.  

 

In the traditional RPG, even though you may need to cast 10 spells in a row, their casting speed is generally limited by the game, so it makes no difference how fast the player is.  If the speed of casting depended on the speed of button presses, it would be twitch.

 

The industry is starting to see a lot of hybridazation and as a result we're seeing more (rl) skill-based elements being added to RPGs in order to make the combat more exciting.  The generic term used these days is "action-based combat", that is combat that is dependant on the action speed of the player behind the keyboard rather than simply on the player having made the correct decision of WHICH action to take.

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  Dixi01

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/11/06
Posts: 31

7/22/11 1:10:50 PM#8

Twitch based combat. That means you have to press buttons fast and result/success usually depends on how fast you press them. In most games not so much brain activity needed to press.

Like in Aion or WoW or Rift, when some ability triggers "on condition" you just have to click it. Usually those abilites better then regualr, so you don't have to think "should I press or no?".  It pops = you click.

Opposite to it is more tactial combat like in EVE. Here is much more important to think and plan in advance. You still have to act (press buttons) reasonably fast sometimes but that happens not so often. Like you can do  missions or clean a deadspace complex for several hours, and have to retreat fast only once when pirates came or you got into a room with too many aggressive ships.

Lets get to your game list, I'll skip games I'm unfamiliar with.


World of Warcraft - here result of combat depends more on gear then on abilities used. Majority of time you can just press random attack abilites. It will work. So just assign some most useful attack abilites to buttons say 1,2,3,4,5 and mash them. You still have to look for encounter warnings like to move or stop dps for a bit.


Age of Conan - I suppose thats worser then WoW. Since you have to aim same time, wihile hitting same ability buttons.

Ragnarok Online  - did not played much but I think this game is more strategy/tactics oriented. In combat your char usually have 1-2-3 ability to use, but need to plan encounter an advance.

League of Legends - this game require good planning and understanding what to do, but to my disappointment skill "to click correct targets and abilites very fast" is also requiered. So it's somewhat twitch based.

 

For myself I strongly prefer strategical, tactical and classic RPG combat where players are given enough time to evaluate situation and pick a correct ability to use. But those games are rare, since it's much easier for developers to create a game where one have to click buttons fast, instead of a game where one have to think.

  Requiamer

Novice Member

Joined: 5/20/05
Posts: 2054

7/22/11 1:17:37 PM#9

Twitch combat refer to first person shooter combat system. Usual mmo like wow use tab targeting type of combat there is nothing twitchy about them since you don't aim, and you movement/position have pretty much no influence. Nothing comparablme to fps combat where you can dodge and hide behind cover. Twitch is the mouse movement you make that is quiet intensive in fps, in usuall tab targeting you actually use the f1-12 key more that your mouse.

  User Deleted
7/22/11 1:18:24 PM#10
Originally posted by Dixi01

Twitch based combat. That means you have to press buttons fast and result/success usually depends on how fast you press them. In most games not so much brain activity needed to press.

Like in Aion or WoW or Rift, when some ability triggers "on condition" you just have to click it. Usually those abilites better then regualr, so you don't have to think "should I press or no?".  It pops = you click.

Opposite to it is more tactial combat like in EVE. Here is much more important to think and plan in advance. You still have to act (press buttons) reasonably fast sometimes but that happens not so often. Like you can do  missions or clean a deadspace complex for several hours, and have to retreat fast only once when pirates came or you got into a room with too many aggressive ships.

Lets get to your game list, I'll skip games I'm unfamiliar with.


World of Warcraft - here result of combat depends more on gear then on abilities used. Majority of time you can just press random attack abilites. It will work. So just assign some most useful attack abilites to buttons say 1,2,3,4,5 and mash them. You still have to look for encounter warnings like to move or stop dps for a bit.


Age of Conan - I suppose thats worser then WoW. Since you have to aim same time, wihile hitting same ability buttons.

Ragnarok Online  - did not played much but I think this game is more strategy/tactics oriented. In combat your char usually have 1-2-3 ability to use, but need to plan encounter an advance.

League of Legends - this game require good planning and understanding what to do, but to my disappointment skill "to click correct targets and abilites very fast" is also requiered. So it's somewhat twitch based.

 

For myself I strongly prefer strategical, tactical and classic RPG combat where players are given enough time to evaluate situation and pick a correct ability to use. But those games are rare, since it's much easier for developers to ceate a game where one have to click buttons fast, instead of a game where one have to think.

 

I'm not sure thats entirely fair to twitch based combat.. sure button mashing can get you far and even make people think you are good if you get lucky enough

 

but you can tell the difference between a button masher and a skilled opponent when you play against them... not sure how to describe it

 

maybe like playing against stupid computer AI vs a human

  JayFiveAlive

Advanced Member

Joined: 6/04/09
Posts: 473

7/22/11 1:21:58 PM#11

I believe Twitch based combat is:

http://na.leagueoflegends.com/champions/29/twitch_the_plague_rat

It makes sense :D

  2can

Novice Member

Joined: 3/05/10
Posts: 57

7/22/11 1:22:36 PM#12
Originally posted by Castillle
 
Any help is much appreciated o.o

twitch refers to using a mouse to aim. not your tab target, but wrist movement

  astoria

Novice Member

Joined: 11/26/08
Posts: 1685

7/22/11 1:25:56 PM#13
Originally posted by 2can
Originally posted by Castillle
 
Any help is much appreciated o.o

twitch refers to using a mouse to aim. not your tab target, but wrist movement

 that's kinda what I always thought. Basically means you have to make more fine movements, especialy considering using on the fly DPI adjustment mice for headshots and long range etc.

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  AIMonster

Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/31/08
Posts: 2016

7/22/11 1:50:03 PM#14
Originally posted by Dixi01

Twitch based combat. That means you have to press buttons fast and result/success usually depends on how fast you press them. In most games not so much brain activity needed to press.

Like in Aion or WoW or Rift, when some ability triggers "on condition" you just have to click it. Usually those abilites better then regualr, so you don't have to think "should I press or no?".  It pops = you click.

Opposite to it is more tactial combat like in EVE. Here is much more important to think and plan in advance. You still have to act (press buttons) reasonably fast sometimes but that happens not so often. Like you can do  missions or clean a deadspace complex for several hours, and have to retreat fast only once when pirates came or you got into a room with too many aggressive ships.

Did you really just insinuate that combat in a non-twitch based game requires more brain power than in a twitch based game?

Games that rely on skill and reflex often also rely on tactics and knowledge just as much as any game that doesn't.

Take a FPS for example.  At high end play you not only need to have quick reflexes, be fast, and accurate, but you also need to know every single map, popular spawn points and routes people take, have knowledge of chokepoints and camping spots, be able to employ tactics such as counter routes you can take to flank or trick your enemies, etc.  Simply having quick reflexes and great precision of the mouse won't win you games.

RTS games require quick reflexes and the ability to micromanage hundreds of units at once.  These are also twitch based in my opinion, in fact I have a harder time playing a RTS like Starcraft than a Shooter or Fighting Game simply because I'm overwhelmed by the amount of actions I have to perform and how quickly I need to execute it, but RTS games are still strategy games at their core and require strategy.

Fighting games also require high skill and precision, but as someone who played them competitively I can tell you no matter how good you become at executing combos and reacting if you don't understand some fundamentals you will consistently lose to players who are less precise and have slower reaction times.  I'm not the best at 1-frame links yet I can still compete on a high end level in fighting games.  I've seen plenty of players who can execute all their combos perfectly, but consistently get beat by players who aren't as fast and precise with a stick, because they are too predictable and don't understand fundamentals like zoning and how to play footsies.

Frankly, if you were to do a study of brain activity of someone playing EVE and someone playing a FPS you'll find they both probably use equal brain power, but likely use different areas of the brain.

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  TGSOL

Novice Member

Joined: 3/14/11
Posts: 279

7/22/11 1:50:54 PM#15

"Twitch" based gameplay refers to any gameplay element that requires quick reaction times and swift finger/mouse movements.

 

A game can technically be both a twitchy and non-twitchy game at the same time depending on the context. Soloing a single even-leveled non-elite mob in WoW is pretty non twitchy in that it requires no real reaction time or dexterity. However, enter a ranked 4v4 arena with reasonably even-geared players and the game suddenly becomes very twitchy with players needing to quickly respond to enemy actions and making sure that their character is always facing that annoying, bouncing rogue who keeps jumping around you (or if you are that rogue, you want to know how to properly jump around to try and prevent spells from succesfully hitting you).

 

Guild Wars has twitchy and non-twitchy elements as well. An interrupter Mesmer is very twitchy in that you have to watch and react quickly to enemy spellcasting and skill activation so as to activate your own interruption skills before they finish casting, and often times you need to swtich quickly to other targets when you see them casting potentially game-changing skills like ressurection abilities so that you can interrupt them. If your reflexes are poor, you will have an incredibly hard time. A minion master necromancer, however, doesn't require much in the way of rapid and reactionary targetting or skill activation, making it much less "twich" based.

  User Deleted
7/22/11 1:54:06 PM#16

There were times i was soo focused in deathmatches in unreal tournament that i probably looked like i was having a seizure to those that saw me right before i put a bullet between their avatars eyes.

I can tell you i had my twitches down to a science, i could twitch and have my crosshairs exactly where i wanted them.

 

 

Can't do that anymore, i get tore up from the floor up now.

  mmoski

Novice Member

Joined: 6/27/08
Posts: 263

7/22/11 2:05:25 PM#17
The term "twitch" is really old, it originated in the late 80's, it only has one relation to the mechanics of ANY GAME, and that is  :
 
That each passing moment while the player is playing the game, their brain is calculating and achieving by action something that will in effect change the course of the game in the next moment (how long is that moment ? less than a second ? how fast is that player ?).
 
Not many modern games can call themselves true "twitch" games, but it has been tagged on to FPS games, but is counter strike twitch ? does it fit the above, maybe in certain moments of the game, but not from start to finish.
  k11keeper

Apprentice Member

Joined: 2/15/04
Posts: 1034

"" "" "" ""

7/22/11 2:13:03 PM#18
Originally posted by TGSOL

"Twitch" based gameplay refers to any gameplay element that requires quick reaction times and swift finger/mouse movements.

 

This is what I would say is "twitch" based combat. It really has nothing to do with aiming systems and I think that people are assuming that because FPS games typically take good twitch skills, that twitch is an FPS or aiming thing.

Conversely many fighting games take good twitch skills yet there is no aiming in those games. Same thing for some MMOs L2 required decent twitch skills (not that high) but it had auto aim.

To me twitch gameplay is about that variable that some people have that allows them to react quickly to what is going on. It has less to do with knowledge of the game and is more about natural talent. Like when I used to play tekken against my good friend, no amount of knowledge of combos and skills let me to outperform him because he had a natural twitch abililty far higher then mine. At the same my twitch skills were decent so my knowledge of maps, tactics, and weapons allowed me to destroy him in UT. Yet if he had the same knowledge I wouldn't have standed a chance because of his natural ability.

He was later tested to be a fighter pilot (which requires amazing twitch skills) and tested pretty high so I don't feel too bad.

If there is a negative aspect of "twitch gaming" (which i never really thought there was) I think it stems from the fact that twitch gameplay elements promote natural ability over knowledge and strategy. To me it's nothing new, I could know all there is to know about basketball but I'm never gonna beat kobe bryant.

  Axehilt

Novice Member

Joined: 5/09/09
Posts: 7213

7/22/11 2:27:08 PM#19
Originally posted by Magnum2103

It's just a derogatory term people use for combat that relies more heavily on skill 

True except:

  • It's not derogatory.
  • It's specifically timing/dexterity skill.  (Strategic/tactical decision-making is also skill, but isn't twitch skill.)
  AIMonster

Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/31/08
Posts: 2016

7/22/11 2:38:12 PM#20
Originally posted by Axehilt
Originally posted by Magnum2103

It's just a derogatory term people use for combat that relies more heavily on skill 

True except:

  • It's not derogatory.
  • It's specifically timing/dexterity skill.  (Strategic/tactical decision-making is also skill, but isn't twitch skill.)

It's almost always derogatory specifically on the MMORPG.com forums.  I can't count how many times I've seen it used here than followed by something like "ADHD FPS gamers".  Almost always brought up as if it were some kind of negative.  When people talk about faster paced combat that relies more on reflexes or manual based aiming they are less likely to talk about negatively then if they bring up the term "twitch" or not, so I consider it derogatory mostly and avoid using it to describe gameplay.

Yes, it refers specifically to timing/dexterity skill, but most non-twitch games don't require any advanced strategic/tactical decision making either compared to a twitch based game (in fact, the more "twitch" based games require more strategic/tactical decision making).  Most MMORPGs require very little of either, and rely mostly on pure knowledge of the game.

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