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Dev Blog: Difficulty Slider


I am TheArtofRawr, Lead Systems Designer for Marvel Heroes 2016. Welcome to the next installment in a series of Dev Blogs describing the biggest systems update in the history of the game! So far we have outlined the Hero Power Update, Item Update, and the Omega System Update: The Infinity System, as well as some parallel changes to travel and mobility that will be released along side many of the impending updates. Today we will be sharing details about the new Difficulty Slider, an upcoming feature that will allow you to adjust the difficulty of the game as you

The All-New Difficulty Slider

To satisfy the different preferences of different players, and to address the wide range of power and play-styles among players in the endgame, we are introducing a personal difficulty slider that empowers players to shape their own in-game experience. To choose a difficulty level, when you’re warping to a location you choose your difficulty level on your slider bar. (There will also be a global setting available.)

As you increment your slider to the higher settings, the enemies in the game will hit harder, take more punishment, and use new abilities. All these combine to make for a more challenging play experience.

Heroes that choose to play higher difficulty levels will be rewarded for their courage and skill. They will earn progressively higher experience bonuses, a bonus on the items they find (more on that later), and the upper end of the scale, called Omega, unlocks all new item tiers called Omega Rarity Items.

Some game modes might even be limited to certain difficulty settings, for example the Raids might be restricted to Omega level difficulty. The total number of options in the slider bar will be continually evolving as we generate new content at the upper Omega levels.

BIF Is Better Than SIF & RIF

Currently, Rare Item Find (RIF) makes rare items more likely to drop, and Special Item Find (SIF) makes it more likely that special items will drop, but the system suffers from a problem: the rarest items in the game drop with very low probability. If you multiply such small probabilities by even a large magnitude like 4x or even 10x, you still have pretty low probabilities. As you play, the improved odds are nearly imperceptible as it moves you from a small probability to a larger (but still quite small) probability. Assessing the value of a Boost that sometimes reduces ten hours of hunting down to four can be unclear, and not as satisfying an experience as it could be.

This is why we are replacing RIF and SIF with BIF.

Bonus Item Find, or BIF, is a rating that you gain for your Hero by using a Boost. If you have a positive BIF Rating, defeating enemies will yield you a certain amount of BIF points based on what you defeated and your current BIF Rating.

There will be a BIF bar in the UI that you can fill up. When you completely fill up the BIF bar with BIF points, you will immediately get a special loot drop that comes from an exclusive BIF loot table. This exclusive loot table is tailored to take into account what level you are and which Hero you are playing, so it will always be good for you; it will be.

As mentioned, BIF will replace RIF and SIF, however existing boosts that you have purchased will still function in the same way. We will be removing boosts from the store soon that give RIF and SIF and will be offering new BIF boosts when the system launches.

This feature is still in development so there may be some changes between now and then, plus there’s more we can’t even talk about yet! As for timing, the Difficulty Slider and BIF Boosts will come out after the initial release of the Talents and Traits update, and will be released shortly thereafter. When we get closer to the actual launch of the feature, we’ll be sure to re-open the discussion with the final details, and rest assured that existing Boosts will be brought into the modern era. This is a very exciting system, so we wanted to let you know it’s coming down the pipeline. Keep an eye out for more details to come!


Now that we’ve expanded on the four core system upgrades in the biggest systems update in the history of the game, please continue to share your thoughts and reflections. As you can see, there are several huge improvements headed your way! And there are still some details we have yet to unveil, like enemies and bosses, so keep an eye out for our next Dev Blog: Enemies and Bosses.

Until then


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