[Feedback Request] Arcade Mode - Thoughts on long term balance


Staff member
What do y'all think about the HP orb buff, by the way? It's obviously super powerful, but then again, its purpose was to give players better comeback potential at their "problem floors". Still, it might've been too much of a buff, considering the other changes to health orbs (remains after leaving room + becoming potions).

And do you agree with Raeden that the winter and season change floors are too easy (minus Winter himself)?


Winter/Season is easier or harder depending on your build. I've found that Shadowclone Spiritslash is actually harder than Whirlslash or Insect Swarm, so maybe my comments about it needing a Defense debuff were misguided... at least in Arcade Mode. It probably crushes in story mode due to the plentiful HP orbs everywhere. If the game had a cooldown for spawning health orbs so you couldn't just quickly top yourself off (maximum 1 orb per # seconds), that seems like HP would actually matter outside of boss battles. :p

But, as for my experiences...

Winter is perfectly balanced across all builds, thanks to it's various hazards and the fact that bombs are spewed everywhere. It's a challenge for most skills.

Season's difficulty is so skewed depending on one thing: Can you beat the room in time for an S-Rank? If not, the Knights put their shields up. Thorns are strewn about everywhere. Whirlwinds fill the room. It's all about how much burst you have.

The Knights have so little HP if they don't get the chance to shield, and the mages are powerless without their spells.

If I didn't know it would be a bit of a time investment, I might suggest adding a rare Black Fairy in the Arcade Season Temple that flies aroud and zaps Mages/Knights at random, giving them temporary elite-ness and causing them to instantly trigger their special abilities / spells. Coming up with a whole new enemy is way too much coding time though. :p


Handsome Moderator
(i don't have anything to say regarding to the difficulty, sorry)

Maybe you could link the hp given to the way the player tackled the stage. Like rank S speed gives 35% while a C rank only gives 10%. That would encourage to either play safe and don't lose life or run and take 1-2 hits with the healing in mind.


The problem with that method is "Good Get Better, Bad Get Worse". It's a spiral effect. Someone who gets a ton of S-Ranks probably doesn't need 35% HP, they're not taking many - if any - hits. Someone getting C's is doomed with 10% regardless.


Handsome Moderator
"Bad get worse?"
I don't think that. If you get pampered as a "bad" player then you don't improve, and if you get less health with high skill it would be punishing to be good.
Also this system wouldn't work if it were tied to the overall rank, or 'damage taken' rank as this would be poinntless. Imagine that those who have not lost any life get the most as a reward... (useless)

But, just binding the bonus health to the speed rank is a possible and fair solution.
And you could make the percentages way less drastic
Something like 20/24/28/32 percent for ranks C/B/A/S


Everyone getting the same amount of HP for surviving a floor doesn't seem like a 'reward' to me.

Most new players barely limp out of boss fights with any HP remaining, especially if they haven't learned the boss moves yet. Everyone is going to die or nearly the first time against Terrorweed or Pumpkin King, simply because they can't anticipate the batswarms or thorns everywhere. I've seen people struggle endlessly with the beehive bossfight, of all things.

So you're not very good at the game. You have 10/150 HP at the end of a fight, go to the next floor and you're now up to 25 / 150 HP. You're still dead in one hit and probably going to die on the very first room. That seems a little punishing because they're not even given the opportunity for improvement. I like the method where they're allowed to get a little farther each time by getting their HP back, because that HP gives them extra chances to learn the enemy attack patterns.

*shrugs* I just don't see why people getting S-Ranks would need HP at all. They're not taking damage. A-Ranks are taking one hit, maybe two, they'll ne healed by anything regardless.


Handsome Moderator
*shrugs* I just don't see why people getting S-Ranks would need HP at all. They're not taking damage. A-Ranks are taking one hit, maybe two, they'll ne healed by anything regardless.
You clearly misunderstood me.
I'm not talking about overall S rank
I'm just talking about Speed S rank
and 20% of 150 Hp is 30 so you 10/150 player would be 40/150 when he gets an overall C and 58/150 when he gets an S (for his speed)

you could leave the stage with
speed S
damage taken C
overall B
and the get full heal bonus because just the speed matters for the healing bonus


^I see both your points. I agree that it would be cool to reward a beserker playstyle where you aim for recklessness but fast to heal more, but I think it would be hard to indicate to the player that speed is what influences the HP orb. Currently, you get tossed a lot of letter grades at the end of a floor and to indicate one specific grade within that to be the only import one is confusing to the players.

Anyways, as far as feedback goes, I think it's currently a tad too easy. I think any player that has played the game in hard mode would probably be able to get up to the season temple no problem with the current healing amount since the bosses in hard mode is much harder than the arcade mode ones [Hard mode arcade mode would be hell tho.... and I would love it xD]. Not to mention that the game is only going to get easier once max-charged skills get in the game.

I'd say small nerf to the HP orb to 30 or 25%. Not only does it make it a little harder, it lowers the gap of people that would arrive at the next floor disappointed/frustrated too; as in, you get to the next floor after taking one hit of ~5% damage, meaning you don't get a potion but you shouldn't pick up the orb either since you are wasting 30% healing at the current 35%.

I'll update this if I think of more. Exam brain has me dead tired at the moment >.<.


Green Slime
I would love to see more of a reward system in Arcade mode depending on how well you do for each stage.

S-Rank could give an extra skill point and/or extra equipment item
A-Rank could give an extra item at the beginning of the new floor

Maybe some kind of incentive to improve on each tir of floor could possibly help.

I have a minor gripe about the random equipment that you get from chests as well. It can make the game much more difficult if you are depending on magic attack and only get melee attack items to progress far in arcade. If there was more of a way to allow the player a choice of items could help progression to later levels.

I am thoroughly enjoying the game, and I am excited to see more updates in the future!


I don't think we should get to choose what items we get from chests. The randomness makes each run different and not the exact same.
Some runs I get good luck with items and I get all pumped. I like the randomness. I don't think we should get rewarded for different ranks. There are achievements for that and also it gives you a higher score. Good enough.

Giving us items for higher scores would make me have so many items and I would get rich selling them or have all items that I want. I want a challenge.


Green Slime
i do like the randomness of the loot. But there are some runs that are complete throw aways because I don't get any gear towards the build I chose. There is enough challenge later on even when you do get the gear you want. There are just a lot of runs I purposefully die on because I didn't get anything to help.


I usually always find good enough stuff later. From shops or loot. I think the challenge with shitty stuff is still fun


Green Slime
I have a few suggestions for Arcade mode :)

I'll start by addressing hitpoints:
This is obviously the most important part to the Arcade. While health orbs are currently hard to come across, I think this is fitting, as increasing the appearance would subtract from the challenge. However, I feel that the greedy nurse is far too greedy. My only suggestion here is to lower the cost of the nurse, even as much as to allow players to return to full health.

Next, continues.
If you are truly trying to reserve the higher stages for the elite, I suggest leaving this out of the game. Not only would this remain true to the semi-roguelike nature of Arcade mode, but it makes reaching the next level that much more gratifying. Adding continues would also make some of the achievements obsolete.

Now for the fun part :)

As of now, there is no use for misc. drops other than selling them. I think it would be neat if there was an entirely new set of craftable items specifically for the arcade mode. Perhaps you could add special drops to each elite enemy encountered, with rarer drop rates. Wouldn't it be neat if players could craft a variety of retro arcade items reminiscent of Grindea's predecessors?

Bosses and elites:
As of now there seems to be a lack of variety in the arcade stages. It would be cool if you added a new twist to some of the enemies, such as recolored elites that breathe fire or a Giga Slime that breaks into three clones at half HP. Now that would be exciting :D

Other Features:
I noticed that there are separate modes within the arcade that players can activate by talking to the Bishop. I have one more idea for this, but it would require more of an overworld hub. Players would be able to activate a sort of central object in the town that would take them to a hub containing all of the different arcade stages. From here players can begin infinite mode, where instead of advancing through the stages in succession, players choose one stage, and battle through the levels as enemy encounters become increasingly more intense. This mode would have unique bosses with slightly different effects each time players face them, to keep a healthy variety in the game.

I hope you enjoy my suggestions, and wish you good fortune as you continue to develop Grindea! I have very much enjoyed this game, and I am very excited to see what comes next! Peace :)


Green Slime
I’ve been playing arcade mode for the past few days and have only gotten to level three :) I love the difficulty but would like to have a bit more of a feeling of progress with the occasional run other than my own skill improvement (and town upgrades and perks). The town upgrades and perks were a lot of fun and great motivation for me to keep playing. Along those lines, I think it would also be really rewarding if Cards were saved/transferred after dying. I was pretty disappointed (and thought it was a glitch at first) when my cards got reset on my next run.

Also, I have yet to win a herding chicken mini-game. What do people think of increasing the time limit for mini-games at lower levels?


Green Slime

Perhaps look at implementing multiple difficulty options with a score multiplier.

- Easy x1
- Medium x2
- Hard x3

Looking at changing monster health/damage/behaviours with the tiers.

And for the true sadists, a mode where you die in a single hit from anything with extra bullet hell going on.

At the end of the day a true arcade experience should be hungry for your coins.


The orb change sounds like it will be nice I look forward to trying it out.

One might assume that a healing over time passive from an item or skill could find its way into arcade as a perk.

Bottomless potion artifact to keep bag company? Heals when consumed then goes on cool down while it brews (don't think about it) more.


Continues already exist in the form of the essence. This system has a really nice feel to it and can be expanded on to provide more items/perks.


Green Slime
With Items I think you should make them random with results skewed towards things
For example if I have a hat on already and another one in my inventory maybe make the percent chance for a hat to spawn in the next chest less until I get a full set of gear.
Or maybe it can look at your current build and make the percent chance to get things you can use well slightly higher (Not too much tho). In the end I enjoy randomness but it is annoying getting 4 helmets in a row ya know?


Green Slime
I would like to suggest that EXP be a bit more balanced when you have more players. I feel pretty under-leveled when playing with friends and coming up against the beginning bosses with their boosted HP.

The Observer

Green Slime
The observation I have with Arcade mode is that chip damage is more or less irrelevant. Either you go through perfectly, or make a mistake that either instakills you or traps you in a guaranteed kill spiral. Certain situations, like the furious gigantic slime, have it set up such that extracting yourself from a single mistake is nigh-impossible.

Some high-costing perks like increased movespeed, resistance to movement altering effects, extended invincibility time after being hit might work well.

A way to practice arcade mode bosses would be nice, too. Plopping them in the arena would be great. You could even give an option to mentor down to a more appropriate "intended" level for them, since multiplayer is going to have mentoring.


I'm used to playing hard games, but the arcade mode doesn't seems as hard as it seems unfair.
My suggestions are the following:

  • Add crates/pots that players can break in order to collect resources, such as material (common), gold (uncommon) and health orbs (rare).
  • Increase potions drop-rate so players can have some temporary boosts, or make so that they can be obtained on crates/pots.
  • Reduce the damage of certain mobs/bosses so they cannot deal more than 20% of the players max base health (100) in damage, that can be changed by the floor.
    i.e.: Max 20 damage on floors 1 and 2, max 45 damage on floors 3 and 4, max 70 damage on floors 5 and 6, etc...
  • Adjust the prices on the merchant, since it's spawn is uncommon and its hard to even have enough money to buy items.
  • Add health orbs drops on mobs, but reduce it's efficiency.
NO CONTINUES, that doesn't won't go well if the max number of floors is 24.
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Green Slime
I read most of the posts here but not all of them because I only have a short time to post right now so I apologize if what I'm saying had already been suggested.

I agree with what some people have said regarding:
I think a shop and nurse per floor would alleviate the difficulty to move from floor to floor. This would be very beneficial but wouldn't make things "too easy". But, I think lowering the monsters damage might make arcade mode less enjoyable. Though, it wouldn't be a big deal if the damage output was lowered slightly and I didn't notice much.

Moreover, I think, and I may write a separate post about this, that having more skills that support different styles of gameplay will surely alleviate some of the difficulties associated with arcade mode.

I know that tanking isn't much of a roguelike trait and I understand how integral/important blocking is in this game but I think that having more skills to support a strong, shot accepting, swordsman wouldn't hurt. Some possible skills: small heal per hit skill, higher levels for defense on hit skill, knockback resistance skill, stun resist, more health for health orb skill, more health when ressed, and so forth. Sure, not many hits can kill you, but it would be nice to have a teammate that CAN take a few hits to save the day.

Similarly, I think it would be nice to see some archery skills. Some skills might be: Ssecial attacks, more damage skills, 1 arrow pickups = 2 arrows skill, burn or chill damage on hit skill, slow enemies, magic arrow, carry more arrows, and so forth.

Lastly, more support skills are necessary for a strong team. Since this can mean so many things I'll leave it at that.

Normally I would post a lot of these suggestions elsewhere but I think that having more rounded skills and passives available to players will be a game changer for arcade mode and I think some of the suggestions I made regarding new skills could be applied just for arcade mode.

One thing that I forgot to add:
I'm not a huge fan of the continues idea but it could work if it's REALLY costly for the player. I think a good way to implement continues would be to charge a specific amount of essence depending on what floor the player has made it to in order to continue. This way, the player must weigh their options to decide of continuing is worth losing some of their essence or if they would rather restart. It kind of rewards the veterans for collecting so much essence and it keeps the new players striving to get more essence before they can start using continues. Personally, I only have 29 essence right now and if I had to spend, say, 5 essence to continue on the 5th floor I would choose to restart, rather than continue, so that I could keep saving for my next perk. Whereas, someone that has some extra essence in their wallet would be rewarded for this by being able to use their extra essence to continue where they failed.
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