Nerf Horde Beacons

After a long day of playing the game, I’ve finally realized as to why Yukon is my favorite map. No, it is not the map layout, with almost all the important locations in the bottom-left corner of the map - fuck the layout. No, it is not the actual difficulty of surviving it - just suicide and bank XP until you can set up a decent lettuce farm. No, it is not the limited selection of guns and clothes that is considered a good thing by some.

This game-changing attribute all boils down to a single, particularly well-known, nefarious item - the Horde Beacon. Looting the military base and killing the mega, grabbing 2 chemicals and a blowtorch from the gas station, and leveling up crafting 3 is enough to grant you vast amounts of the best loot in the entire game. Even worse, the amount of items rewarded scales with the amount of participating players. A group of 10 will get 22 items from a single horde beacon.

And even then, you don’t need to be a large group to utilize the Horde Beacons. Just doing 1-2 with a friend is more then enough to raid any base but an expertly-crafted honeycomb. Horde Beacons are the reason why nakeds are sniped with total disregard for ammunition. Horde Beacons are the reasons you get raided overnight, every night, at 5 AM. And ultimately, Horde Beacons are the reason why this game is not about survival.

Full-blown, tryhard clans will always exist. They rise to the top due to their knowledge of the game, high levels of skill, excellent teamplay, and too much free time. But the reason as to why they can dominate to such an extent is the Horde Beacon. I’ve met a couple of clans in my time on Yukon. I’ve killed them, and they’re killed me. But unlike all the other maps, the loot disparity between me and them was never absurdly high. There is a vast difference between 50 C4 and literal neverending amounts of all and any raiding gear.

If there are any server owners open to change, consider disabling Horde Beacons. ̶A̶l̶s̶o̶ ̶h̶a̶v̶e̶ ̶R̶o̶c̶k̶e̶t̶ ̶L̶a̶u̶n̶c̶h̶e̶r̶s̶ ̶d̶e̶s̶p̶a̶w̶n̶ ̶a̶s̶ ̶s̶o̶o̶n̶ ̶a̶s̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶y̶ ̶s̶p̶a̶w̶n̶ ̶i̶n̶,̶ ̶c̶o̶n̶v̶e̶r̶t̶ ̶y̶o̶u̶r̶ ̶s̶e̶r̶v̶e̶r̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶v̶a̶n̶i̶l̶l̶a̶,̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶d̶i̶s̶a̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶c̶h̶a̶r̶a̶c̶t̶e̶r̶ ̶s̶l̶o̶t̶s̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶t̶h̶i̶r̶d̶ ̶p̶e̶r̶s̶o̶n̶.̶

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The horde beacon seems like a remnant of the earlier days of Unturned 3. It essentially acted as the ‘final boss’ of any map with its buffed zombies and then the mega. Nowadays they are more of an easy loot outlet than anything else and the actual bosses aren’t really sought after outside of achievement hunting or boredom.

However, the horde beacon is at fault here. It’s more of an issue with Unturned’s design. Generally in U3, everything is within the player’s reach within the first hour to two hours of play. In an ideal survival game, the gameplay forces the player to expand their reach to progress past difficulty, material, skill, time, level, etc barriers.

Yukon comes with the illusion of higher challenge because of the environmental factors. In reality, it’s not much more difficult than Washington or Russia (especially now that it isn’t snowing 24/7). The only real progression barriers are within either NPCs or in map layout, both of which are very flawed systems.

It’s pretty common knowledge that Unturned 3 is a little too easy. I wasn’t writing this with a solution in mind because there really isn’t a good one. The only options are picking and choosing from slightly better or slightly worse systems.

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I have been saying this for years, really don’t know why the horde beacon is still in-game

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I promised I wouldn’t it, I know people are tired of hearing about how good of a game it is…

…but project zomboid really is great in this case. ideally, there should be something exclusive to the end-game. something you can just barely start working on after hours and hours of gameplay. 24, 48, or maybe even 72 hours, I’m talking proper end-game. though I’m not saying zomboid’s systems are perfect, they’re way more fitting as a survival game compared to unturned’s.

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I think what you are saying is quite true, i guess thats why Nelson has added the excursion thing .

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How is the Horde Beacon not at fault here? My most played map is Washington, and let me tell you this: all the Horde Beacons drops are incredibly scarce and rare otherwise. I’ve seen a Grizzly spawn only twice in my hundreds of hours of playing. Dragonfang - about 5 times. The fact that loot that is supposed to be scarce isn’t - is entirely the Horde Beacon’s fault.

i rly dont think the horde beacon is an issue. even if it didnt exist what stops me from SHIFT+W-ing to summerside or olympia to find an AR and gunning down random kiddos? sure i won’t have the capacity to raid with a grizzly or whatever but i think killing people / PvP is a bigger deviation from a PvE survival experience than raiding some poor sod

also i just want to say that yukon does not solve any issues whatsoever, with raiding gear just straight up spawning at construction locations and a weapon arsenal comprising of : masterkeys, hawkhounds, crossbows and… the honeybadger (yes really) it suffers from the same issues as the horde beacon but this time it stems from questionable map design rather than a single item you can easily blame for all the issues in this world

in the end i think that with the current state of unturned being what it is, a game all about PvP and raiding, removing one item that contributes to that aspect of the game would not change anything in the grand scheme of things. i think that 3.0 should be left as it is, a fast paced and enjoyable PvP survival experience. any attempts to deviate from this core value of the game have just felt forced and unneeded (see : weird ass raiding update from like last year) . 4.0 will allow Nelson to rebuild all these systems from the ground up to work together and form a coherent survival experience (whatever that means) where one can’t just SHIFT+W to a military base or easily craft a single item that grants endless endgame content.

tldr : u3 pvp game, changing one aspect of it wont change that, 4.0 fix this maybe idk

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Every game has something Special. Have you ever seen a Horde Beacon in other games ?

If i play a day only on Washington Survival server, i will be full of raiding gear at the end of the day… What do you mean

You know what’s also an issue that is related to horde beacons?

Zombies being too easy to deal with, mostly because guns are coded to deal outrageous damage for some reason (Except shotguns and meme guns). You can see why horde beacons are being farmed so easily, like even in general they’re more of a hindrance than a threat.

I suggested removing zombie-specific damage entirely for most guns before, but it’s dumbed down to an optional setting, or forced in hard mode, which would probably be never used.

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This, I think of 3.0 not as a survival game, but more of an open-world PVP looter-shooter with survival elements, It won’t become some hardcore survival game without some major gameplay changes, and we’re kind of past the point of those.

I think some weapon rebalancing would be great, but again, we’re kind of past the point of that.

Exactly, and keep bringing up Project Zomboid, it’s survival mechanics would be a great base for UII, in general Unturned could learn a lot from PZ, it’s probably the best option at the moment for full-blown survival in a zombie apocolypse.

At the end of the day, what 3.0 is now is likely what 3.0 is gonna stay as, Nelsons going full steam ahead on UII, which doesn’t really leave time for sweeping gameplay changes in 3.0.

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I suggested removing zombie-specific damage entirely for most guns before, but it’s dumbed down to an optional setting, or forced in hard mode, which would probably be never used.

For what it’s worth, I think it was a good change – personally I only ever play with it enabled.

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Maybe removing separate damage for Zombies and Players will improve this issue either that or have slightly less damage is done to zombies, but i still think getting rid of horde beacons or making them exceedingly difficult is also something we should have

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Here you are attempting to confuse two distinct gameplay mechanics - Raiding and PvP. There is nothing wrong with Unturned providing a focus on PvP. In fact, considering that the survival mechanics in 3.0 are so poor, it is most definitely for the better. But how easy it is to raid is where I find issue with the game.

Have you ever played Yukon? Like, for a prolonged time? Say, a session of several weeks long? Genuine question. Because from what you’ve said, I have genuine doubts you’ve played much, if at all.

Yukon does not magically “remove” raiding, and it shouldn’t. Raiding itself is by no means an problem. What is a problem, however, is how easy it is to obtain raiding gear in obscene amounts, on other maps, right off the bat. As I’ve said previously, mega + mechanic + crafting 3. And this baby-tier difficulty is exactly what Yukon fixes.

There are no more military locations, and megas no longer drop explosives. Instead, raiding gear is now moved over to a spawn table that has otherwise been completely fucking useless. What is the last time you stopped to loot the construction site in Seattle? No, seriously. Think about it for a second. In my 1000+ hours, I have never looted it even once. And this is coming from someone who loots most stores in a city because the more food the better.

But that’s not all. There are a lot - and I mean a lot of construction drops on Yukon. There isn’t a central military base a clan can camp and seriously screw with the odds of someone getting raiding equipment. Furthermore, even if Yukon’s setting does not necessary make it harder to survive, it does make it significantly slower to progress.

Imagine you log onto Yukon and want to start raiding as soon as possible. You will need a base. Food is scarce - only real source of it is Whitehorse, maybe mere scraps at other locations. If you have any plans that do not involve starving to death you are kindly asked by the game to build a basic base, plant some seeds in a planter, and secure yourself a food source.

C4 and Detonators do not have a high spawn rate - you will not be able to get enough to raid a base before you starve to death. Oh, and I almost forgot - that’s just food we’re talking about here, how could I forget about thirst? There’s no rain, rainbarrels won’t work. Yeah, you either go to Off-Limits to get a sample of berries or you do not have a consistent water supply.

Did I mention that C4 are quite rare? When I asked the top clan how much they’ve had, they claimed they had fifty. This, while an insane amount that could raid my base up to 5 times over (which they did :^) ), seemed reasonable. They played all day, they played in a team, and they played good. 50 C4 felt like a fair amount, contrary to 4 alternate characters filled to the brim with Dragonfang ammo, C4, missles and rockets. 4 alternate characters per clan member, that is.

Raiding does not contribute to PvP. Unless the server is running some kind of anti-offline raid plugin, saying that Raiding contributes to PvP gameplay-wise in any way is like saying being attacked in Clash of Clans contributes gameplay-wise to attacking someone else. And apart from the apparent loss of resources, those statements are simply not true.

Additionally, I am not very sure what you meant when you called the raiding update “weird”. Removing the ability to raid with low caliber was an excellent choice. While I may complain about Horde Beacons, they require at least some amount of effort. Camping at your base in Olympia 24/7 doesn’t.

P.S: The Honeybadger, while a disappointing addition to a survival map, is not nearly as bad as you think it is, considering the rarity and the scarcity of the ammo (a mag or two vs the piles of raiding gear you will get if the mega drops a detonator). Especially considering that most, if not all weapons had their TTKs significantly lowered because of a lack of military-tier protective gear. Ace, for example, will now always 2 shot in the head, assuming bleeding is enabled.

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I feel like this is the most accurate description of the game I’ve seen so far. It perfectly repeats Fallout 4’s gameplay cycle - shoot, loot, craft, except that other players are now thrown into the equation, which only makes it more fun. If this cycle is to be reinforced by a raiding nerf, I wholeheartedly believe it would only benefit the gameplay.

Fully agree with the weapon balance part. Empire deals the same damage as a Heartbreaker, but has a faster firerate, a whole lot less recoil, and can be used as a secondary. Only downsides to the Heartbreaker are a smaller mag and 40m less range. Also don’t forget the insane recoil of the Grizzly and Matamorez magically dissapearing the second a scope is used.

we chop the charterers legs off so it gets a bit harder to survive

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Honestly, I kind of agree with Danaby here. Though Nelson should try to keep Unturned I (as I’ll be calling 3.0 for now on) around for as long as possible with the occasional update while prioritizing Unturned II as he’s doing now. 95% Unturned II, 5% Unturned I at this point. Though there’s a few people worried that Nelson’s trello is too ambitious from what I hear.

I’m mostly hopeful for the game. Basic mechanics come first, after that the cool shit nelson wants, after that optimization, and after that other shit like paint for buildables.

If your argumentation consists solely and entirely of “it’s way too much for Nelson to implement” or “Players are accustomed to the old system”, it is an incredibly weak one. Especially considering the only thing Nelson would need to do is add “Disable_Horde_Beacons” and “Construction_Spawns_Explosives” settings in the server config file, just like how it was done with restricting character slots. I doubt that it would take much of Nelson’s time, although it’s entirely up to him regardless.

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The first thing Nelson says is to poke fun of me by playing with the setting I got into the game :pensive:

On the topic of keeping the game the way it is without changing too drastically, I do think disabling amplified zombie damage by default shouldn’t be that much of a deal other than requiring more ammo than usual, which also means to slightly curb horde beacon farming. It doesn’t instantly make the game more survival-oriented (to be fair disabling horde beacon also doesn’t do that as well) but just enough that zombies aren’t a joke.

Other than that I guess the game is already too far in development for major reworks just to achieve the intended design. Any change and it would be wasted on the new game’s arrival.

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Trying to dedicate myself to a map other then Yukon only further reaffirmed my thoughts. Had a play session of about 6 hours on Germany the other day. Vanilla, no alternate characters, otherwise default settings, medium mode, no third person, server was wiped last week.

Built a generic skypillar with a sniper’s nest on top within sniping range of Ostsee’s Campground. All I did was loot the campground and snipe those that were doing it for me, kill the Mega as it respawned, and hunt down anyone I saw in Munich, as it was within player render distance. Villain within the first two hours.

By the time I finished the base, I already had 4 detonators, an array of guns, loads of raw explosives, and a metal wardrobe dedicated entirely to ammo. The base wasn’t anything fancy either - just 11 floors of hatches extending into the sky (On the topic of hatches, how come they take 2 charges to get destroyed? They cost a mere 4 metal to make, this has to be an oversight, right?), with the 12th one being a generic sniper floor with all windows.

Thought I’d log off to do the Horde Beacons late at night when the server is half-empty - got raided by the time I logged back in. As to be expected, honestly. Had I been given another day or two to prepare I’d be able to take on the spawling colossus of a base that took over the Aerospace mountaintop.