Hi there, had a few hours with the game so far, just wanted to share some initial feedback and a couple of ideas.
Generally, I think it is really important to continue to add more shape and strategy to the game, and how the AI acts according to each player position. Certain situations are vital to that, and while some may require the introduction of new animations which may not be currently possible, there may be some short term changes that could be implemented.
I would like to see smoother/new animations in future. Players upper bodies should twist with the momentum they generate when passing.
Props, and forwards in general, should not routinely be able to send a 30-40yd bullet across field.
Use the passing rating to set an individual limit on passing distance.
The dummy pass function should be set up with a cancel command (L1 followed by R1 or vice versa) rather than the right stick. It is also currently far too over powered.
Player acceleration from a standing start is currently too slow. I often create a little space in the game, but then it gets swallowed up immediately because my player takes far too long to accelerate after catching the ball.
In future, introduce new running animations that employ a little more balance and swerve. A sharp change in direction resulting in a foot planting in the ground and accelerating away would be so satisfying.
Down on the right stick (replacing the dummy) should trigger a goose-step or hesitation move, followed by a burst of acceleration.
Faster and more dynamic sidestep animations would be a great addition.
The moves on the right stick should correspond with the direction the left stick is currently held in (If you're running left, the right stick moves shift 90 degrees)
Overall, I like the addition of set pieces.
I would love to see more added in future patches or iterations of the game
My only issue is that it seems a lot of the plays take part so far away from the gain line. I would like to see the 10 release the ball late, and the runners hitting the line with great timing.
Even the simplicity of a crash ball option for 12 or 13 that receive the ball close to the gain line with full momentum would be such a great addition.
A progression into scrum and lineout moves would be a great step forward.
The Fullback often takes a bad position in defence, rarely there to cover a line break.
When looking to box kick, you should be able to press the Triangle Button once, to prepare your chasers/backline. Then once in position, press again to kick. (Box kick should have the option of distance (X) or height (Triangle) - currently too short and flat)
The Forward Pod
Please try to create a more realistic forward pod near the breakdown (A lead ball-carrier with flanking players who will hit the ruck immediately to create quicker ball)
The use of the pod should be primarily focused around creating quick ball, with a full back line preparing for when you want to go wide.
It can also be used as a tactic in situations where possession is paramount. It should be a small risk, small reward tactic. Rarely gaining a lot of ground, but tough to turnover possession.
(To stop it becoming OP, maybe the more it is used, the more likely a knock on in contact?)
Competing in the Air
Kicking (unfortunately) has become such a key part of the international game. The current animations are a mess when the ball is in the air.
The addition of a contested catch mini-game would add a lot to the tactical side of the game (especially in Career Mode when building a team etc)
Forward pods that lift a player to catch on the kick-off would be a nice addition
Goal Line Attack/Defence
This battle should become its own tactical game as it is so different to open play
Would potentially require a number of new animations to be added
The team in possession should be able to command a 'Goal Line Formation' when close to the line.
Forwards congregate around the breakdown for pick and go or pod phases.
Backs align wide ready to strike when the opportunity to spread it arises.
The opposition team should be able to respond with their own formation.
Forwards tight around the breakdown, attempting to block pick and go/pod phases
Backs will respond dependant on the forward battle, if the team in possession gains momentum it will suck the back line in closer.
Attack should be pushing and reaching for the line, defence should be giving everything to block that line. Doesn't feel that way currently.
The Number 8 pick up is a waste of time currently. Please add animations that allow a pickup to immediately gain momentum and acceleration off the base.
It is very rare to see scrums cleanly won against the head nowadays.
Would potentially like to see a cumulative scrum score or power bar that builds with each flick of the RS & LS. The variance between the scores will dictate the result.
Even if the current mini-game has to stay the same, I would like to see the following outcomes from a scrum.
Team in Possession: Normal Win = Scrum moving forward, opposition back line and back row slower to react once the 9 passes the ball from the base.
Team in Possession: Dominant Win (When the lines meet with perfect timing) = Scrum Penalty awarded for opposition team collapsing under pressure etc.
Team Out of Possession: Normal Win = Ball remains with the team that put into the scrum, but they are under pressure, being wheeled or moving backwards. Subsequently, this increases the reaction time of the oppositions Back Row and Back Line once the ball is released by the 9.
Team Out of Possession: Dominant Win (When the lines meet with perfect timing) = Scrum Penalty awarded for opposition team collapsing under pressure etc.
There currently aren't enough situations in which to kick at goal and accumulate a score, this would help remedy that and offer a greater level of realism to the set piece area.
I think the breakdown should be executed automatically for the team in possession. Allow users to set the number of players automatically entering the ruck in their team strategy. The closest players(s) or forward(s) will enter the ruck without a command.
The aim of this is to speed up play when in possession, players should attack the ruck with greater momentum and less hesitancy. This allows the user to focus on preparing the next phase rather than the ruck.
(Allow the user to override/add players with the traditional command settings)
If a player is tackled and a ruck is formed, generally in professional rugby it only takes 1-2 good support players to hit the ensuing ruck to maintain possession.
The danger of turnover comes when running into isolation, away from their support - this is when the opposition has an opportunity to steal possession.
Opposing users retain the current controls at the ruck, allowing them to compete. However, it should be much more unlikely to create a turnover unless they correctly identify the situation detailed above.
Committing too many players out of possession will leave big gaps in the defensive line.
Add an animation when an opposition player contests the ball at the ruck, especially when a player makes a tackle and then transitions to his feet to try and jackal possession or a penalty (penalties more likely than clean turnovers).
Add a number of different kicking animations to choose from for each player.
When a player is inaccurate in their use of the kicking meters, the result should be a kick that sails wide. The 'scuffed' kick animation should be removed, looks awful and very rarely occurs in professional rugby.
In future, I would really like to see this area of the game reworked. With the current function, a kick in front of the posts is in essence the same difficulty as a kick from the corner.
Split kicking into 3 ratings, Kick Power, Kick Accuracy & Goal Kicking (Would allow for those players that have massive range but are slightly erratic e.g. Elliot Daly)
Have a detailed explanation as to what each of the gameplay sliders affect
Split sliders into User & CPU
Any edited player (on PS4) has their name converted to capital letters automatically.
Custom kits do not carry over when downloading teams from FanHub
Star Players are unable to be edited in terms of attributes and accessories (I don't see why this wouldn't be allowed)
Generally happy with the upgrade to the Player Creator
A number of haircuts seem a little outdated or scruffy. Especially since 90% of players tend to have some kind of fade haircut, of which there are very few, if any, available to choose from.
A few more modern boot templates wouldn't go amiss (or the ability to import logos to them...)
In future, I would do away with the 'linking' of players and teams. It would make more sense if we were able to edit the core database in terms of storage capacity etc.
Disappointed in the new Kit Creator
While it is a step in the right direction having slightly more control than just the templates in previous iterations, I feel as though the ability to import or create and share logos would be hugely attractive to the RC community.
Remains a bit of a mess in terms of how it is laid out. It makes things very difficult to find players or teams that people have put a tremendous amount of time and effort into.
Would recommend an option to order the list by number of downloads, and most recently added/updated.
Apologies for the absolute essay, I'm sure there will be many more suggestions flying around over the next few weeks.
After messing around with the sliders and getting used to the controls again, I'm really starting to see the step up from RC3. I hope you guys are able to build off this in the next few patches and updates, excited to see what comes about.