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Conquest Exploit Farming - Battle of Ilum (Is it an exploit? Or just boring farming?)

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Conquest Exploit Farming - Battle of Ilum (Is it an exploit? Or just boring farming?)
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Ocho-Quatro's Avatar


Ocho-Quatro
08.28.2014 , 09:04 AM | #1
http://www.torocast.com/4053/conques...hyperspacebar/

[Content Pasted Below if you don't want to follow the link...]

Quote:
Conquest #2: Clash in Hyperspacebar
Let’s start this off with a positive note: Last week’s patch, and the addition of Strongholds, Guild Ships and Planet Conquests generated a very enjoyable week of gameplay (at least for me). I watched my guildmates get excited about spending time on their personal strongholds, as well as our entire guild pulling together with a plan to invade Voss and win. Which we did, by our guildies working together and completing objectives and generally playing TOGETHER for the duration of the week. It was great for morale, and overall enjoyment of the game, and the event in and of itself was fun.

That was last week…..

This week: We chose to invade Ilum. It was a little slow going at first, but we were pretty neck and neck with another guild on the leaderboard most of the day on Tuesday, and once primetime evening hours hit, we all grouped up and did some group finder Hard Mode Flashpoints, Heroic dailies and crafting to put ourselves up into the #1 spot by the time everyone logged off by around 250,000 to 300,000 points. It was a lot of work, but we had a great time and we were actually experiencing content.

On to last night (Wednesday) – We realized that the guild that we were competing against, was gaining points faster than anything we had ever seen. They didn’t have any more people online than we did (in fact they had less)… and we had around 35 people online, doing nothing but grouping for conquest objectives, and yet, the guild with roughly 20 people online was gaining points at a rate that was so fast, that even with our manpower advantage, they overtook us and then some. We were quite confused…..

Until we saw the entrance area to the Battle of Ilum flashpoint. And then it made perfect sense. Every guild that was involved with the Ilum conquest (including the guild we were competing with for the #1 spot) had people standing around the entrance to the flashpoint. At around 8pm ET last night, there were easily 40 players just standing there, and we weren’t really sure why…. And then we figured it out:

A stealth-capable level 55 player walks into Story Mode Battle of Ilum and literally just runs to the end of the flashpoint… Now, there are a few clickable objectives you need to hit throughout, but it’s possible to do them, skip the enemies and bosses, and stealth out of combat to keep running. It takes between 6 to 8 minutes for one stealth player to reach the end of the flashpoint, then they invite 3 other guild members who are standing waiting outside the door, they zone in, which puts them at the entrance to the last room, they spacebar through the final cutscene and then those 4 players kill the final level 50 Story Mode boss.

It takes a total of around 10 minutes to do, and even without a Stronghold bonus, it yields 3,000 points to all four players = 12,000 Conquest Points for 10 minutes of effort. A group of four people can obtain (without Stronghold bonus points mind you) 72,000 Conquest Points/hour.

But it’s not just 4 people doing it….. If you have say, 3 stealthers running to the end in 3 individual instances, and 3 more people standing at the entrance: you can cycle it, so that you have 4 people completing the objective every 3.5 minutes for 12,000 points minimum, which is around 200,000 points an hour, generated by 6 players farming over and over and over. Imagine the points you could gain, if you had 15, 20 or 30 people coordinating this type of points farming? Which is how I saw a guild with 20 people online, gain 3 million points in around 4 hours.
I really want to believe that this is not what the developers intended for this event.

The thing that really makes me upset about it, is that my guild wants to compete to win the planet conquest. And there’s no way we can do that without exploiting this bug. So we are faced with a choice: Do we abandon the conquest race and just play the game and have fun? Or do we try to keep up and take advantage of an obvious exploit because the ends will justify the means? I’ll be honest… we started doing it last night because we didn’t want the points situation to get out of control, but HOLY CRAP it’s boring, it’s not fun, and many of us couldn’t stomach the idea of doing it nonstop for a week….. So we went and raided, and we did complete clears of Hard Mode Flashpoints and experienced content and played together. We still gained conquest points, but not enough to gain a lead and eventually not enough to even keep it close, and at the time I logged off last night, there was a good gap between us and the top guild on the leaderboard.

I am not point fingers at anyone…. If a guild has the determination and the patience to farm something that is boring enough to make me want to just logoff and go do house-chores because it would be more entertaining? They deserve to win I guess.

But for me? This is a game, and it’s supposed to be fun, and last night???? It wasn’t fun at all.

I really hope the developers know about this, and patch it. Soon. It would be an easy fix…… Make the conquest objective for running flashpoints a DAILY repeatable, instead of infinity repeatable. Once a day, per toon. Problem solved.

*sigh* I almost don’t want to log in tonight….
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Jerba's Avatar


Jerba
08.28.2014 , 09:09 AM | #2
I'd not call it an exploit, just clever use of game mechanics. Since the game does not impose a limit on the number of flashpoints you can run each day/week (unlike operations), no one's stopping you from endlessly farming the same flashpoint over and over. It has been known for over a year that you can skip nearly everything in BoI, so the devs knew this when they put in BoI as one of the objectives.
That being said, I'm sure this is not intended by the devs, but I highly doubt they'll do anything about it, compared to how many other more pressing issues they let slide in the past.

You can be sure that with the conquest events, players will look for the weakest link to get the most points, and constantly farm it. Last week (after Thurday's hotfix), playing PvP all day was the best way to do it, this week it's running flashpoints.

Quote:
I really hope the developers know about this, and patch it. Soon. It would be an easy fix…… Make the conquest objective for running flashpoints a DAILY repeatable, instead of infinity repeatable. Once a day, per toon. Problem solved.
Please not. Already last week, PvP players were at a major advantage, because PvP (and crafting) was the only repeatable objective. While PvP players could consistently rack up points with their usual activity, PvE players were at a disadvantage. This week, PvE finally have a fair chance to compete without having to do PvP, and if they make the flashpoints one-time objectives, PvE players lose their only way to gain points.
Scoundrel healer and vanity pet collector on T3-M4. Some of my reports of as of yet unfixed bugs:
FlyText - Minimap lit up - Wardrobe - Friends count - Custom chat channels - Soa boss fight - Vanity pets

Kanders's Avatar


Kanders
08.28.2014 , 09:12 AM | #3
At least it is a good report and hopefully something might be said about it or not said and just fixed
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Lecivius's Avatar


Lecivius
08.28.2014 , 09:12 AM | #4
Happens on Esseles as well. You don't even need a stealther. A 55 with a speeder can run the entire FP in 8-9 min, invite 3 at the end and BOOM, off to the next run. Entire guilds, including alts, can max conquest points in a matter of hours.

Repeatables need a REAL hard look, IMHO.
If it ain't broke, fer chrissakes don't fix it!

Ocho-Quatro's Avatar


Ocho-Quatro
08.28.2014 , 09:20 AM | #5
Quote: Originally Posted by Jerba View Post
I'd not call it an exploit, just clever use of game mechanics....You can be sure that with the conquest events....
I wouldn't disagree with that. Players found a way to gain the highest point yield, in the shortest time-spend. If there's one thing that rings true for MMOs, it's that the players will ALWAYS find ways to do things, that the dev's either didn't anticipate, or didn't intend.

Quote: Originally Posted by Lecivius View Post
Happens on Esseles as well. You don't even need a stealther. A 55 with a speeder can run the entire FP in 8-9 min, invite 3 at the end and BOOM, off to the next run. Entire guilds, including alts, can max conquest points in a matter of hours.

Repeatables need a REAL hard look, IMHO.
I agree here wholeheartedly. I think the INTENT of Conquests, was never to be a farming point race, but instead, a communal event for guilds to band together and complete objectives. Unfortunately, what it's becoming, is guilds farming points by skipping content. But, as I said above, that's a constant in all MMOs and will likely never change.

What I'd like to see, is for more objectives to be NOT repeatable, or only able to be claimed once per day per toon.... Sure it will lower the total amount of conquest points in any given planet race, but whether or not you win with 10 million points vs. 1 million points doesn't really matter. The whole goal, should be to have fun, with like-minded people, and the current state of conquests is really akin to gold-farming, but instead of gold, it's points.
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Alec_Fortescue's Avatar


Alec_Fortescue
08.28.2014 , 09:25 AM | #6
Quote: Originally Posted by Jerba View Post
I'd not call it an exploit, just clever use of game mechanics.
That's how every exploiter justify himself exploiting...

Jerba's Avatar


Jerba
08.28.2014 , 09:26 AM | #7
Quote: Originally Posted by Ocho-Quatro View Post
What I'd like to see, is for more objectives to be NOT repeatable, or only able to be claimed once per day per toon.... Sure it will lower the total amount of conquest points in any given planet race, but whether or not you win with 10 million points vs. 1 million points doesn't really matter. The whole goal, should be to have fun, with like-minded people, and the current state of conquests is really akin to gold-farming, but instead of gold, it's points.
I can agree to that.
In another thread, I wrote that ideally, the game should treat all activities equal, and give out points based on time invested. Eg. two hours of PvP should give just as many points as two hours of an operation or two hours of flashpoints. Although they'd still need to weigh the activities differently, e.g. crafting (pressing a few buttons) should not give as many points as PvP or PvE where you actually need to play with your character.
This way, the top guild would be the one that put in the most man-hours. It is still not an ideal solution, but in the end any solution will favor a certain playstyle, there is no absolute best.
But realistically, I don't see the conquest events changing anytime soon, they just finished developing them. Until they develop a better solution, I only ask that there will always be repeatable objectives for each playstyle, be it PvE or PvP.
Scoundrel healer and vanity pet collector on T3-M4. Some of my reports of as of yet unfixed bugs:
FlyText - Minimap lit up - Wardrobe - Friends count - Custom chat channels - Soa boss fight - Vanity pets

MadHobbit's Avatar


MadHobbit
08.28.2014 , 11:51 AM | #8
wow I must take my hat off to the guilds who figured out this way of doing the FP for the bonus,one more item not to worry about doing,

Vandicus's Avatar


Vandicus
08.28.2014 , 11:58 AM | #9
The game mechanics are clearly flawed. If this allowed item duping or the like, the devs would call it an exploit and ban people for it. But since its something rather more trivial than that, they'll probably just let it go.

Grinding itself is fine, but the mechanics are not intended to allow you to simply skip the content involved.
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TaitWatson's Avatar


TaitWatson
08.28.2014 , 12:01 PM | #10 Click here to go to the next staff post in this thread. Next  
Hey all,

I brought this to the attention of the team, and discovered that this is a bug - Flashpoint Conquest Objectives are intended to be one-time only, not infinitely repeatable. The only Flashpoint Objectives that can be repeated are the Group Finder ones - and those can only be done when you have the Daily Mission for the Group Finder available.

We will be releasing 2.9c tomorrow morning to address this issue. There will be a maintenance post made later today with the full information.

Thanks,

Tait
Tait "pariahloki" Watson | Community Production Coordinator
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