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NEWS: You've been WHACKED!! Phantom

One of the biggest changes we have seen so far in round 9.75 is the new feature Whack. What’s whack you ask? The answer is simple; it’s a brand new version of the old kill feature. A new way to shoot and a new way to search. With KyleKroff promising a feature tweak for Whack, we take a look at what it is, how it’s impacting the game and get the views of some of the general public on what they would like to see changed to the feature in the near future.

In round 7 we were treated to an overhaul of the Private Investigator feature which unfortunately ended the memes of, “4 hours m8” but that in comparison to what we have now is a completely different level. To break it down for you, you now have three different options when looking to find a trusty PI to help you eliminate your target. First up we have Dino Pirozzi who will typically find your target within 6 hours, costing a measly $125,000 for his services. If you’re looking for somebody a little bit more efficient, we would recommend Noemi Esposito, typically finding your target within four hours, but asking for a price of $250,000. However if you want to get the job done as soon as possible, there isn’t a better option on the market currently than Marco Mancini, who promises to find your target within the hour. Marco doesn’t come cheap though, his services require a very hefty $15,000,000 which is an astronomical jump from the previous two.

Moving away from PI’s for a second, let’s look at the feature Whack itself. In previous rounds, you would search your target, get a car in the state, punch in a number of bullets and fire away praying to the bootlegging gods that you’d shot enough. Back in those days crews and individuals alike would set about getting to work early killing players to test out the numbers needed per kill. These were more commonly referred to as bullet calculators. Bullet calculators were not an in game accessory or feature and were made purely through trial and tribulation by the community itself. Most of the big crews managed to create their own bullet calculators pretty quickly into the round meaning they could go about their killing business efficiently. They were pretty hard to come by though if you weren’t in the know, people mostly kept their bullet calculators close to their chests hoping to keep an advantage over enemy crews and potential enemies alike. This round, all this has changed, bullet calculators are a thing of the past with the new whack system. In round 9.75 once your trusted PI has located your target, you will be given three options including an amount of bullets to shoot and a success percentage on successfully whacking your adversary. The amount of bullets will change depending on what rank the account you want to shoot at is and the percentages will vary from 70% all the way up to 98%, meaning if you don’t have enough bullets to shoot for 98% kill, you can test your luck and shoot a little bit less and hope the job gets done.

Following on and keeping with the theme of changes the bullets needed to make a kill has also seen a sizeable jump. A lot of players have been complaining regarding how many bullets are now required to whack someone, but how does this directly impact the game? In more ways than one that’s for sure. First of all bullets themselves are in short supply. With the only two ways to acquire bullets right now being the colossally priced bullets from bullet factories and an option to buy them directly from the gold page, people have found themselves short on. To help combat this, KyleKroff has implemented a 5 day event into the game in which you will receive extra bullets when committing both crimes and auto burglaries. One may think that this is to test the waters to find out if this is something that can be implemented into the game full time, however if this is the case you have to get the balance right. The last thing we want to do is render bullet factories absolutely useless being able to get more bullets than you would at a bullet factory completely free. With that being said, there is also a bullet factory update on the horizon which will most likely look to change the foundations of bullet factories all together into a state similar to what we seen in Round X where you would go and melt your cars in exchange for bullets. That’s a story for a different article though.

The second way the new whack feature is impacting the game could be seen as detrimental to the game. We have seen feature updates in round X to try and combat alliance mentality, but with it being so expensive to now to benefit fully from the whack feature (with regards to bullets used and prices for the best PI) we have already seen some crews band together to make whacking accounts and more noticeably crews to save on costs. As much as we all commend the efforts into fighting the alliance mentality we have grown to see over the years, I feel like for the game to progress to a point where a crew is rated on individual prowess and not which alliance it belongs to, whack needs to be made easier. Not to the point where it’s child’s play to whack folk, but it definitely needs to be cost efficient.

Finally, I feel like with the current PI system it’s extremely difficult for smaller groups to pull off successful shootings. Using the most expensive PI means that the window for larger groups to retaliate mid shooting is miniscule. The reason state dons were removed from the game is because they were deemed to overpowered, mostly for their extremely low search times to combat a shooting. With Marco Mancini, everyone has the chance to have potentially a state don search time. The majority of the community believes that Marco needs a nerf.

Moving swiftly on as your probably bored of my rambling by now, we look toward the community. I recently made a game forum topic asking for seasoned shooters who have made both kills in previous rounds and this round to come forward to share their thoughts on the whack feature and how it’s fitting into the modern day bootleggers. This won’t be an interview type series, instead I asked each person who came forward for a statement on the following questions:

-How do they feel about the new whack feature?
-How do you think that whack has impacted the game so far?
-How do you feel it compares to the old kill feature, including PI’s and do they prefer it?
-What would you like to see changed?

Most known alias: SneakyPete. Crew: End Game.Kills this round: 2

Quote:
''Speaking of End Game, we are seeking individuals that would like to experience new challenges in the game, and if anyone would like to know more than find me. Hint: There is a good chance I am in the Discord chat.

On the subject of the whack system, I actually really like the concept. I don't believe Kyle should alter to much other than the percentages. Most of us know now that the 77%-78% works really well, the percentage range is just too small. I would like to see more like 19% lowest, 47% middle, 98% tops, and yes failed kills need to be a possibility, even if it’s a very small possibility. What in life do we not fail at? No one shoots a gun with 100% accuracy all the time, they are going to fail eventually. Even if someone could hit 100% accuracy, not everyone is that talented. Stay below 100% Kyle, I really like that choice you made.

My next thought on the whack system brings me to the discussion on bullets. Wow has the economy messed us up on the bullet game or what? Kyle there needs to be a strict cap on bullets and along with saying that, money needs to find its way out of the game as well. Crew daily cost, property tax, you could bring in establishments and put a daily cost on them as well, what ever you do make sure to get the economy to where it really balances out pretty well with a very smooth rising.

I like the detective system, I like the $15 million idea even though it is a crew emergency option to prevent from being cleaned out. I don’t see underground shooters using this option, or really anyone other than to stop someone else’s shooting. I personally also agree with the times and losing the search. If your going to kill someone and you really want to do it, you need to invest the time and plan accordingly. I don’t believe things should be to easy even though many will disagree.

I do prefer this kill system over the other. The last one was too secretive and would have taken a new player a long time to adapt to unless they met the right people. Other than the bullet/cash balance, I have to say this is one of the best changes to the game I have seen.

Those are my thoughts, and I hope I answered all your questions with satisfaction. Dude Aldo, it’s a pleasure being interviewed by you. You’re a legend in this game and I hope to create some waves just as you did brother. Thank you for having me!'

Most known Alias: ImmortalSouljah. Crew: Fear The Wicked. Kills this round: 5

Quote:
''There are certain things about this kill feature for which I have polar opposite feelings, both good and bad at the same time. The new kill system creates excitement in shooters as you start your searches and you are now glue’d to your screen refreshing every so often waiting for that window to pop up where you can fire your shots so there rush is there, excitement is flowing so you can take advantage of the limited window. At the same time, the time of the search that’s commonly used (4 hours) is too long and after a while it starts feeling stressful and mentally draining to keep checking few often praying that you don’t miss the window and when you miss the window as I once did, it feels very frustrating and the same feature leaves you disappointed. This brings me to my second point, the luck involved in the new kill system, At times this feature has brought me great joy, I was able to find a target in 8 mins and shoot him in the middle of his spree and I felt really good that I saved some of my members from being killed by him and at the same time I’ve had some searches that are found within an hour and other searches that never got found after 2+ hours so when the enemy shooters searched me after my first or second kill, they found me within the hour and I died unable to kill my other searches because of the luck aspect of finding someone, so that same feature left me disappointed that I was only able to kill 2 people from my Don account which takes a while to get too.

This brings me to my third point, The witness statement. I only have one opinion regarding this, There are too many WS’s sent out, they are posted way too quickly exposing shooters seconds after their kills. This is the worst feature of this new kill system and I have not been happy with the WS in the past aswell because they have no depth. I believe I do have a solution/suggestion for this though, First of all the amount of WS’s sent need to be reduced significantly and second of all the expiring timer of the WS’s need to be removed (I’ll explain soon) The amount of WS’s sent out should be very very few giving the user’s got who them a feel good/lucky feeling. Secondly I think whoever got the WS should not be able to freely post it on the graveyard, there should be a cost to posting the WS and the cost can be two fold. One it should cost money to post it (1mil, 2mil or a certain% of the total money (Very little ofcourse)) second the person that’s been killed or anyone for that matter can reveal the name of the person or person(s) posting the WS for a certain cost. This will create 2 things, One the WS’s will have ACTUAL value as it’ll become a commodity so people can sell them and two those who are buying the option to “reveal the rat” spend money and this takes out money out of the game so it can create a balancing cycle. The reason they need to be non expiring is this gives players time to sell, look around etc. Lastly, The 15mil option Is WAY TOO cheap. This needs to be adjusted to the total game money automatically. As the game’s total money goes up, the 15mil option is the only option that anyone will use. Might aswell delete the other two after mid round but to combat this I think a set% of total money is a good solution, right now it’s way more worth for my crew to have one shooter search 10 people using 15mil search than to use 2 or 3 shooters to kill the same people.

In summary, I have no problem with the first two points that I mentioned as they balance themselves where sometimes I get lucky and sometimes enemy shooters get lucky. The things that need a drastic change are the WS’s and 15mil search. Those are my thoughts, thank you for taking the time out to speak to me and I hope I have contributed something towards the game so we can all enjoy a better more enjoyable game and yes I’d like my enemies to also have fun.
Enjoy the essay.''

Most known alias: MostWantedOutlaw. Crew: The Sacred Empire. Kills this round: 8

Quote:
''well, I don't know where to start with the new whack feature, I think its a love/hate kind of relationship,
I loved that you don't need to guess the number of bullets and to guess the protection of the target, but the bullet count needed is insane in regards to bullet production,it is so very obvious if you have a look at the statistics page, the amount of high ranked players is almost double the amount of low ranked players and the new bullet count is to blame.

arranging mass shootings is also very complicated in comparison to previous rounds, the PI window is way too narrow in comparison to the search window, I think there should be a change in PI's mechanics to make it a bit more realistic for smaller groups to actually have a chance in pulling off successful shootings.

I believe in order to bring back balance to the game, bullet count should be reduced at least 15-20%, PI Extension option to be introduced or a few more detectives with larger windows, I would also like to see crew layers back in action, since all crew benefits were nerfed this round, at least providing layer protection would be a fair advantage of maintaining a crew spot.

all in all, I'm like the concept of the new whack feature, but I believe there's still room for improvement, I believe Kyle should introduce the hit squad as a group weapon, this would encourage people to work in groups to reduce costs, maybe 3/4 people can buy hit squad and shoot together, also PI rework is a must if we ever want to see more crew takeovers and wipes.''

Most known alias: Kramer. Crew: None (formally Axteze and The State)Kills this round: 1

Quote:
''The new Whack feature was inevitable but an unwelcome change in my opinion. It feels dumbed down compared to the old system. Removing the need for a crew to share bullet counts should eventually allow anyone to become a shooter, which is great. But with the current cost of bullets it is still prohibitive to most players being able to make kills. The short and variable window of a PI finding your target seems like an overcorrection from the "permanent" searches with targets found 30hrs at a time with the old system. I hope and expect Kyle will correct this to somewhere in the middle so crew wipes can be organized again. That of course is assuming we see any of the suggestions by players regarding new ways to get bullets added to the game. Melting cars, different types of OCs, etc. Even bullets with other game actions helps. Not only is it frustrating to find a target, but it is too costly to make more than a kill or two. With bullets being as expensive as they are and PIs as frustrating, we need some quality of life adjustments before the feature is fully utilized. That's why we have seen a distinct lack of large shootings and resulting cash drops. Rackets will have less of an effect on the game's economy when shooting plays a bigger role in regulating.

So far I hate the new feature. It's why I've only made one kill. But I have faith in new-look Kyle to make adjustments as we go on so I am optimistic for the future.''

Most known alias: Abonzo. Crew: The Vanguard. Kills this round: 2

Quote:
''I Feel that the current feature is intended to stop domination and i think to all intent and purposes, so far it is doing just that. However arguebaly this is the new Bullet Counts than actual Whack feature. Overall i like it but it as already recoginesd by Kyle needs tweaking a little.
I Like the 3 options of shootings however i would rather see a much varied option at a much cheaper bullet cost maybe even more options for risk takers.
97-99% (current kill amount)
85 -87% (less)
60- 65%(less)
30-35%(less)
1% (100bullets
The impact on the game so far has been Huge, I see nothing but positive impacts with this feature for the vast majority of the player base,'The issue for a long time on BL, is we as players have evolved far more quickly than the game, leading to one side using the features to limit other sides/independent crews. The last few rounds have been 'Do as we say or die' . A small fight at the beginning, one side comes out on top, the other side/ any independents are then forced to 'Bend the knee, Join the winning alliance, Fight from UG in vain or think fuck this and quit. This feature does makes that to expensive. Certainly too Expensive this early on and i feel that is good for the game. Currently a lot of crewless are making high ranks, Alot of unaffliated crews on stats and as a result, a bigger more active playerbase, so in summary i beleive it has made a Postive Impact on overall Gameplay.
I really like the feature. When organising our shooting on SR we got to include 15 guys as shooters, more members were included than the old style and the fun is shared among more of our community, I really enjoyed using the feature this way. It also does add a lot more defensive tactical options.

My only gripe is the PI's, They are unbalnced.

Noemi Esposito Finds target within 4 hours
15 minute window
$250,000
VS
Marco Mancini
Finds target within 1 hour
5 minute window
$15,000,000
I have tested this over and over again and using 6-8 shooters all in different states Noemi Esposito has found under 1 Hour each time. Why on earth would anyone pay for the 15million search when you can just team up with 5-6 guys and pay 10% of the cost.

Either Noemi needs to be set to a minimum search time of 1 hour (not within) or Marco needs to be cheaper.

Sorry for the spelling bro, im on 48 hours no sleep''

Most known alias: Aeneas. Crew: Event Horizon. Kills this round: 8

Quote:
''I don't like the new whack feature. You need more bullets to kill, not even certain it Will succeed, and can't plan a thing unless you have alot of shooters ( in case of shooting crew + ). This results in being damn difficult to shoot one from stats. Only upside is the fact you can now shoot anyone. In general that is, i liked the planning for a layer shooting.

I'd like to see pi's being able to keep targets Found Longer. Personally layers can be back too but I get 'lone players' can have an impact on shooting bosses/property owners now, before having to clear layers.

Bullets seem costly too, shooting gets to expensive for just anyone to shoot, result is that those Lone Rangers get a disadvantage after all.''

We thanked everyone for such informative and well thought out replies. A couple of others did reach out to the buzz in an attempt to be included, but unfortunately they either didn’t get back to us or already represented a crew who had already spoken to us.

I would like to say I’m really enjoying the fact that KyleKroff is taking risks and updating features into the round and treating this as a test round if you will. After what happened with Round X I think this is the best course of action to ensure that everything is doing correctly for the upcoming round 10 or round x or whatever it will be named this time. We at the buzz hope KyleKroff can use this article as a baseplate for future updates regarding the whack feature. If anyone would like to get their point across but didn’t have the chance to feature in this article, I would love for you to post in the comments how you feel about the changes made to kill that ultimately lead to whack.

This just about wraps everything up, I hope everyone else is as excited to see what will happen to whack in the future and if it will be balanced. I’m sure once those changes do come about, the Buzz will have you covered.