First, combat design (Combat Designers) and combat gameplay (Gameplay Programmers/Systems) are different, but they do overlap and go hand-in-hand. I've been thinking and noticed that PSO2 combat is nice and ok but there isn't any meaningful satisfaction in beating any boss or any amount of enemies. Although NGS gameplay is a step up from PSO2, it also seems very plain (not sure how to word it). My solution is to propose another sub-system or feature on-top of the combat system that adds much better visuals and possible improved sounds (sound design is totally different but you'll understand)...
This combat design feature should also have its own sub-options menu so users can tweak and edit many parameters/features; like removing shake or making it less shake or removing flashing or hit color upon impact, added visual lines, stun outlines, smoke, dirt/part impact, rubble fx, etc.
Here is NGS gameplay and although it does look fluid, it doesn't look rewarding or fun; which is why many other games are popular because of chaining combos, elemental chaining, reactive enemies, and more animations and attack patterns in general. In addition, in PSO2, the moves/sound effects sound cheap and having too many high-frequency weapon sounds really hurts the ears when everyone starts spamming it online. I think it would be a nice idea to add at least 3-5 sound variations of the hit per animation that way it doesn't start clipping. But how? You can add a post-filter function that randomizes a mask/parameter to change the pitch and frequency of the sound within good range-parameters upon weapon/attack impact. This then brings us to impact. Yes, NGS didn't showcase any big moves, but it would be nice to see IMPACT or an indication of that; not like knockback or something, but a more meaningful animation; let's say if the player deals 1 MIL damage, then the boss has an impact animation; this also can be applied to regular mobs as well, and make the game more satisfying overall.
NGS gameplay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-almqon6820
Disclaimer: I am not promoting any of these games. I can't seem to be able to post examples of what I'm talking about, but here are some games with amazing and satisfying combat design with gameplay:
Project BBQ: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuIDYE6hxzY
Punishing Grey Raven: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZZuXiJRmJY
Blue Protocol: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWIBqv5xUd4
Tower of Fantasy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfWXKPO9tGs
What are your opinions? I'm curious what other types of features/designs other games have that make combat rewarding in a game... Maybe like combo skills and if you get 10 hits in a row (without getting hit) you can do another cool move into another move at 15 hits? Idk...