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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 9:06 pm 
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Pffttt... this sounds like nothing more than a way of creating "Officers" Ala MoO2. BTW MoO2 had an escape pod Tech that let your Leader switch ships when his got insta-killed.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 9:11 pm 
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Zpock wrote:

We want hundreds of ships in epic battles so your hero's ship needs to stand out from the crowd. He needs to be hard to kill, wheter it's becouse of some exotic shielding, awesome evasive abilites, or simply having a massive battleship. The hero would have battle turning abilities, like the CO abilities in advance wars mentioned. An experience system for every single ship you have is too much detail, so I think there needs to be a clear distinction between the hero and the bulk forces. If everyone can eventually be a hero... then noone really is a hero.


No, the idea is there are hundreds of ships for an empire but only a few dozen Big ships, eg. the US, how many SHIPS does the Navy have, now how many super carriers does it have.

Essentially rather than Heros you have Flagships... the ships that are important merely because they are big, powerful and you don't have that many of them. They would have the highest survival rate (unless intentionally targeted) and so the highest experience.

The way to do that is to design the game so how many ships you can build stays nearly constant through out the tech tree.

Didn't happen in MOO2, there the higher you were in the tech tree the more ships you could build. (the max productivity of your HW started at 18 PP/turn and ended up at ~180 PP/turn) the Cost of a Battleship full of stuff stayed nearly constant.... now if a Battle ship full of stuff had increased in cost ~10x then you wouldn't be seeing Hordes of Doomstars in the end game...
Because a Battleship would still take ~20-30 turns to produce from your HW (now you would have more worlds, but Doom Stars would still be 30 turns or so to produce on the BEST of them, so no more fleets of doom stars.... meaning Doom Stars+Titans would be Hero ships because you would maybe have built a dozen of them.)


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 9:29 pm 
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The problem with heroes is that there is usually only one strategy. Which is to kill the most powerful, ie the hero, first.

I think having heroes affect battles can ruin the strategy in the combat side of the game.

We could have alternatives of course.
-Have heroes not be in combat, but in a non combat area of the game, eg spying, leaders.
-If heroes are in combat, and they provide a bonus, such as morale, then the other player should not know where the hero is, unless this information is gained through spy's.
-The other things is should we have heroes be the people on the ship or the ship itself. Would you be more excited if Admiral Adama was here or the battlestar galactica!!!!


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2006 10:22 pm 
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utilae wrote:
-If heroes are in combat, and they provide a bonus, such as morale, then the other player should not know where the hero is, unless this information is gained through spy's.
-The other things is should we have heroes be the people on the ship or the ship itself. Would you be more excited if Admiral Adama was here or the battlestar galactica!!!!


I agree with the first point. The hero should not be detectable by the enemy. The admiral hero would normally be placed on the biggest Battleship out there, for survivability/effectiveness purposes, but a clever player COULD put the admiral on a frigate on the edge of the combat arena.

Perhaps after a few combat rounds (or minutes, or whatever) the signals intelligence group of each fleet could figure out because of radio broadcast patterns where the admiral is. The fleet with the more advanced tech could get the edge in discovering the enemy's hero, and/or (depending on which techs were researched) could have their own hero hard/impossible to pick out.

Personally, I'm more attached to people as heros. Who was more important, Darth Vader, or the Death Star? Admiral Ackbar or his Mon Calamari cruiser? Elvis or his pink Cadillac?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 12:55 pm 
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I don`t know about this hero idea since it would create just that kinds of problems that people have mentioned all ready in here. Like the fact that too dominant heroes could ruin the the strategic side of the battles. And also if the hero ships would be more powerfull than your other ships it would be easy for the enemy to detect that kinds of ships with their scanners and then just destroy them, leaving your fleet in a state of chaos.

Maybe there could be admirals which could gain experience, like I mentioned in my earlier post, but in addition to that they would gain moral bonuses which would benefit the entire fleet if this admiral is commanding them. I think this kind of system would be quite realistic as if we think of the famous generals of WWII. Now they didn`t have any super natural powers, but it was their clever mind and the reputation that they gained on the battlefield, which made them the legendary heroes of our history. But of course there is still the problem that every fleet should probably then have their own admiral and then how would the single ships be treated and would there be enough admirals, as probably admirals should be quite unique, if you had a huge amount of small fleets.

Also the idea of keeping the ship production times and costs to a same level all game long doesn´t sound very good to me as this would halt the industrial development.

I think that the amount of ships that you can build could be limited by the ships maintenance costs. Every ship would have a maintenance cost per turn and naturally the bigger ships would have larger costs. Now of course even these costs could drop when the technology develops, but big fleets with big ships would still require huge amounts of money to cover their maintenance costs and so your economy would set your fleets natural barriers.

This sort of system is already in at least Rome Total War and I think that it works really well as in the campaign that I am currently playing I have a very large army but my economy is in ruins and so I can`t develop my nation. To have that kind of system in this kind of game would probably work even better as here developing your empire is one of the top priorities and if you only have a large but obsolete fleet you are soon as good as dead.

Also like I suggested in my earlier message I would like to have direct player control over the battle as I think this makes the battles more exciting. Now what I am afraid of could happen with the non direct player control is that after a while you would be bored of the battle system as if you can only give vague orders to your fleet you could end up in situations where the AI controlling the action would use some tactics that you wouldn`t want to use or just make simple stupid mistakes commanding your ships, which is quite common with AI behavior. That kind of things could easily frustrate the player and maybe even get him to abandon the game.

In addition I think commanding the space battles yourself would give you more epical experience as you would be directly responsible for everything that happens in the battle. Then you couldn`t blaim the AI when you lost a close battle, and then you could experience the great victory which is the result of your own brilliant desisions and the brave and patriotic ships of your fleet.

I think these kinds of experiences are just those which make games epical, because you can actually feel that you are the general. Some times after a close defeat you just want to take the keyboard and throw it out of the window and then after you have won a battle you thought you couldn`t have won you just want to jump up and down in joy. That kinds of experiences make games epical and thats why i suggested that there could be some easy to learn basic commands for those who don`t want to give and manage the small details and more detailed commands for those who want to give precise orders. Also the detailed commands would work really well in multiplayer as it would make possible to have the pro players battle out very tactical battles.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 6:01 pm 
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MikkoM wrote:

Also the idea of keeping the ship production times and costs to a same level all game long doesn´t sound very good to me as this would halt the industrial development.

I think that the amount of ships that you can build could be limited by the ships maintenance costs. Every ship would have a maintenance cost per turn and naturally the bigger ships would have larger costs. Now of course even these costs could drop when the technology develops, but big fleets with big ships would still require huge amounts of money to cover their maintenance costs and so your economy would set your fleets natural barriers.


So you do the exact same thing but with money?

The fact is fleets should be maintained through the same way they are built... production. Your production would rise throughout the game with increasing technology (as it should) and so should the Cost of your fleets (because they are using better technology that takes more complicated quipment ...more production... to produce).

So your Economy (Industrial portion) would set your fleets natural borders, and as technology improved your Industrial economy you would also improve the Quality, rather than the Quantity/Size, of your Fleet. You would improve the Quantity/Size of your Fleet when you expanded on to new worlds (more economy without more tech).

And if your economy 'Limits' your fleet, then your fleet Should 'Limit' your economy (bigger or better fleet=smaller economy for non fleet things.... like ...well Major planetary buildings, which are the only thing I think industry is used for other than Fleets.... but in anycase it means more of your economy that has to be Industry rather than food/money/research)


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 5:36 pm 
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Direct user control of battles is boring!

Let's do it like GalcivII, and classic civilization. You attack a fleet, and watch the dice roll... Then Computer plays out some imginary 3D battle that looks exciting.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 6:55 pm 
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ErikAlbert wrote:
Direct user control of battles is boring!

Let's do it like GalcivII, and classic civilization. You attack a fleet, and watch the dice roll... Then Computer plays out some imginary 3D battle that looks exciting.


I agree. (almost) instead of "you attack with a fleet", you move a fleet to a system and tell it what to do, defend X, intercept, run past, assault X, etc. Then the dice rolls happen (so its not neccessarily win or lose... it can be win-win or lose-lose).


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 7:37 pm 
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I do kinda like the idea of being able to do a stategic change (like retreat) in the middle of battle. Kinda like a gooier version of SE3's "automatic combat" mode.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 11:10 pm 
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Krikkitone wrote:
ErikAlbert wrote:
Direct user control of battles is boring!

Let's do it like GalcivII, and classic civilization. You attack a fleet, and watch the dice roll... Then Computer plays out some imginary 3D battle that looks exciting.


I agree. (almost) instead of "you attack with a fleet", you move a fleet to a system and tell it what to do, defend X, intercept, run past, assault X, etc. Then the dice rolls happen (so its not neccessarily win or lose... it can be win-win or lose-lose).


This would be similar to Risk's enhanced computer version, where instead of simply attacking, you can choose to "attack left flank" or "defend flanks, ambush center". I couldn't really see what difference it made some of the time, but there was some RPS that happened.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 3:32 pm 
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ewh02b wrote:

This would be similar to Risk's enhanced computer version, where instead of simply attacking, you can choose to "attack left flank" or "defend flanks, ambush center". I couldn't really see what difference it made some of the time, but there was some RPS that happened.


No, you would Not be choosing a Method/Tactic/Strtegy, you would be choosing a Goal (as in when the Battle is over I want....)

So you have Forces in the system, do you want them to
1. Defend Planets X,Y,+Z
2. Capture Planets A,B,+C
3. Destroy Planets G,K,+M
4. Stop Enemy Fleets Passing through (usually by destroying them)
5. Intercept enemy Shipping going through (be Pirates/Raiders)
6. Pass Through
7. Defend Shipping through this system
8. Blockade Planets A,B,C
9. Break Blockade
10. Gather Data
11. Destroy Enemy Fleets in System
12. Remove Enemy Fleets from System
13. Hold position in System

[Those are all the possible goals I can imagine for a Fleet in a System, some could probably be merged though]

(of course a Fleet would always have the goal of keeping itself from being destroyed.)

You would not tell them about Flanking/Frontal Assault/Reverse Decoy Manuever nine, etc.

You might tell them
1. How much weight you place on those goals v. the Fleet's survival
2. How Risky to be AND/OR how 'Divided up' the fleet should be... more divided=better coverage, but more easily picked off


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 10:59 pm 
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I like that. Maybe add a way to have a preference for taking out certain types of enemy ships?

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 3:35 am 
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self-preservation is a goal like any other--it should be included.

you'd want to have sliders for each goal. the combat orders would start out with self-preservation at 51%-the fleet would defend itself, but neither go out of its way to attack, nor flee. setting self-preservation to 100% would make the fleet flee if anything larger than a scout entered the system--you could auto-set this on your scouts, perhaps.

hold position would also default to 49%, so that the fleet would hold position until its survival was threatened, then give ground.

the other sliders would start at 0%, and as the player moved the sliders up, the goals would become more important. Whichever goal had the highest % would be completed first, and then the next highest, and so on--if two goals can be completed simultaneously (eg, the fleet could probably defend planets X and Y and also destroy enemy fleets in system) then the computer would combine them.


====somewhat far out there====
or we could even train the AI using something similar to NERO's sliders: http://nn.cs.utexas.edu/NERO/download.php Our AI people could even use their source code.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 9:13 pm 
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ewh02b wrote:
self-preservation is a goal like any other--it should be included.

you'd want to have sliders for each goal. the combat orders would start out with self-preservation at 51%-the fleet would defend itself, but neither go out of its way to attack, nor flee. setting self-preservation to 100% would make the fleet flee if anything larger than a scout entered the system--you could auto-set this on your scouts, perhaps.

hold position would also default to 49%, so that the fleet would hold position until its survival was threatened, then give ground.

the other sliders would start at 0%, and as the player moved the sliders up, the goals would become more important. Whichever goal had the highest % would be completed first, and then the next highest, and so on--if two goals can be completed simultaneously (eg, the fleet could probably defend planets X and Y and also destroy enemy fleets in system) then the computer would combine them.


====somewhat far out there====
or we could even train the AI using something similar to NERO's sliders: http://nn.cs.utexas.edu/NERO/download.php Our AI people could even use their source code.


Well I figured that Self preservation would be assumed, and that it would be the only one with a slider (or at least that that slider would overrule all others). I'd probably make this one with at least 6 Settings, (up to 100 as a % slider would have)

I would put the other options as 'settings'
either from Goal/If it's easy do it/Don't do it, up to say Eight levels at most

So the fleet would First consider the "Self-preservation" v. Other Goals (based on the 'Self presevation setting')
and then Weigh the different other goals.

The nature of the prioritization for the other goals, is something that would need to be considered.


I do like the idea of adding certain enemy ships (or probably 'Types of ships') as 'priority targets' Ie, you have very limited PD ships in your empire, so Enemy Carriers are a Priority Target for your Fleet Hunters Group. You want to destroy enemy carriers so Other Battles go well, not this one.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 11:42 pm 
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The easiest way of thinking about things is as a "priority". self preservation might be a higher priority than everything else--then again, maybe not. The player should be able to make a list (drag'n'drop) of what they want to accomplish--so Defense of Planets could be first, then Self Preservation, then Destruction of Enemy Fleet. The fleet would secure the first goal, then move on to the next. This might work better for offence than defence, however.

For more control, each goal could be given a number of "points". The AI would then decide how to pursue those goals in order to maximize the number of points it earns. For example, Blockade System might get 50 points, while Destroy Shipping could earn 10 points for each freighter destroyed. The AI would then decide that destroying the freighters would be the best way to complete both goals, instead of simply repelling them.


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