I would be very interested to see how you dodge 2 Anangu boomerangs that are wider than the hallway you're currently in . While there may always be a way out, the question is, how long does that way out last, and what level of skills are required to recognize that way out and use it. The point that I had (poorly) been trying to make is, the skills and reflexes that are required to use those ways out on beta normal are skills primarily developed by playing more of the bullet-hell and 1-hit-kills-you shmups that few people play. Before, using the ways out on normal only required skills and reflexes developed in much broader video game categories, like FPSs and RPGs, allowing a much broader appeal. This is in line with how most other games do their difficulty levels: easy/super-easy is new to gaming, normal is experienced gamer new to the genre, and hard/ultra-hard is experienced with the genre. Obviously everyone is different, so there are probably people who would be happy putting in 100 hours on super-easy, but those are the general guidelines most games with variable difficulty go by to make sure players get a consistent experience., and straying away from that seems like a bad idea.
Missiles seem to be in place to counteract this by allowing players to make their own ways out, which sounds good on paper; however, in practice, recognizing that you messed up and you're in a situation that requires you to use a missile requires nearly the same amount of forethought as recognizing and using those small ways out in the first place, so they aren't really effective at solving the problem.
So, my balance proposal, assuming no real difficulty changes in terms of enemies:
- Increase starting player health across the board a little to survive early floors
- Decrease the gains from health boosts, so players cannot possibly end with ~30 health more than they started (I realize health gains from shards change by difficulty, but the vast majority of my health gains were from items)
- Increase player base damage, so they can more easily defeat early floor enemies
- Further decrease gains from damage boosts, so players cannot steamroll later floors
- Find a way to make sure the player has an opportunity or two to get a new weapon before they leave floor 2 (besides weapon shops, as the player rarely has enough money to buy something on the early floors - maybe start the player off with ~20 credits?)
- Decrease the gains from energy boosts so players cannot possibly end the game with ~350 more energy than they started (350 should be enough to create an energy centered build on any mech, without allowing them to kill Terminus with only their energy weapon (unless they try reeeeally hard ))
Of course, this all comes with the usual caveat of 'this is just my opinion based off of my limited experiences'. As I seem to be the only one with a real problem, maybe there is no problem, and my sample size of 4 isn't enough to accurately make statements about balance problems . I'll play a few more rounds to see.
Technically the boomerangs can still be dodged in that situation you mention, heh. But yes, most players wouldnt be able to do that. Though, in the case of an enemy like that, simply pulling them into a better area is the key (since they always chase you). Now, if you're finding a room where the game is generating this situation yet the room does NOT have somewhere you can pull enemies like that into (or similar situations), feel free to report the room here so I can change it. F3 to see the room name (bottom right corner of the box that pops up).
As for the game's difficulty, dont forget what genre this is; by default this type of game is simply harder than the sorts you mention. Heck, many of these games start out quite a bit harder than this one does on Normal (Enter the Gungeon being the most prominent example right now). Isaac is the exception to the rule in that it's easier than the rest of these.
Of course, as I said, I'll be fixing the difficulty as the early floors go. The game shouldnt be drowning you in doom THAT early. I dont want this to be as easy as Isaac, yet it's not supposed to be as murderous as Gungeon when played on Normal (where alot of players cant even beat the FIRST floor...). Gotta keep it at least somewhat accessible. Should be a pretty easy fix since it's mostly just about enemy selection and some rooms being overloaded. I'll be able to get to that on Monday. I'd do it now but I'm at a hotel with my stupid laptop of stupid which cant run the game without exploding.
As far as finding weapons early on, right now, you've got a pretty good chance of finding them with the change to miniboss drops.
Now, as for the blue mech since that's being talked about alot here: Should we be going with a multiplier at all? I mean, one way or another, energy upgrades are pretty easy to come by in this and many of them are quite large, particularly if you get things like the battery or that big red button thing.
What about simply coming up with something different for that mech? I mean, "more energy" isnt even that interesting of an ability, particularly if you're not finding very interesting energy weapons. The blue mech starts with a crappy gun and a familiar. Maybe something that affects familiars?