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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 1:09 am 
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I think we could go as low as 30 different hulls, total.

Assume 5 sizes. (if desired, I'm okay with either 4, or 6, also)

Assuming (per my proposal) a generic role neutral ship for each size. That's five.

Assume five role specific hulls (with role bonuses). Carrier, Battleship\Cruiser (depends on hull size), Sensor\Spotter, Point Defense, and Colony\Transport. (I've decided to reassign stealth as a hull component, versus an individual hull, as I've stated earlier in this thread)

Assume worst case scenario, all five sizes for each role specific. That's 5*5= 25.

So 25+5=30.

Additionally, we could (as a bare minimum) have only one graphic per hull, for a total of six. One generic role graphic, scaled 5 different sizes. One carrier role graphic, scaled five different sizes. Etc.,Etc. I prefer more visual cues than merely a change in scale, however I'm advocating that a bare minimum of six graphics is a plausible possibility, in this paragraph.

Ideally, in the end, we would later tweak the graphics by either additional design and/or colour schemes.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 4:38 am 
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MikkoM wrote:
So what I am trying to say is that there wouldn`t be no artificial against common sense bonuses given to certain kinds of hulls.
I believe there is general agreement on this point, though all would not agree on exactly which bonuses were artificial.


utilae wrote:
eleazar wrote:
Besides why do you still think that we need role-specific hulls?
...In any case, I see that it would encourage players to be more focused on designing an RPS ship. If it wasn't immediately obvious what RPS types there were for the ship to be, the player may not focus enough to use the proper RPS type...

eleazar wrote:
I thought you agreed with the idea that "put everything in the biggest hull" mono-design could be avoided by building some sort of RPS into the nature of shields, weapons, and the tech-tree.
I still do. And it can be done and role specific hulls can be used with it. Role Specific hulls are just a means of sorting all the RPS information for the player to understand better. If all weapons, shields etc are the RPS, then hulls are a means of quick designing your ship.
Role-specific-hulls (i.e. hulls with special properties that make them uniquely suitable for a specific role) are a rather complex solution for the simple task of "sorting all the RPS information".
All that needs to be done is to provide the auto-designer with RPS-role templates. This is necessary anyway, since an effective fleet needs a variety of ships in it.

I was starting to favor role-specific hulls, but IMHO no one has given a compelling reason for role-specific hulls, other than Davebaby (i.e. to discourage the mono-design fleet) and, as explained previously, IMO that goal can be better achieved in other ways.

A more important point: :arrow: If we can really design the weapons/shields/etc. so that there is an effective & interesting RPS interaction with role-neutral hulls, why do we need to recreate the same RPS interaction with specialized hulls? We shouldn't try to accomplish single design goal with two unique mechanisms, unless a single mechanism won't work on it's own.


Kharagh wrote:
Some kind of role selection could be implemented at ship design, to help the player categorize his ships, but not together with any bonuses. The player could create these roles as he sees fit, e.g. a "Support Carrier" for the above mentioned shere design, or a "Assault Carrier" for the Cylinder.
However these designations would have no impact on gameplay other than it helps the player (and perhaps his oppenent if he has the appropriate scanners) to know what the general purpose of a ship might be.
I fear this would lead to players players purposely mislabeling their ships to confuse the opponents with scanners. Anyway, I think the player should be able to label his ship designs with whatever name he chooses rather than being limited to a pre-made list.


skdiw wrote:
Quote:
* Hull sizes have various characteristics that alter how ships can be designed on those hulls, and/or directly alter how ships designed on those hulls function

i prefer hulls as like a guideline on design or how the ship behaves, in which player can opt to alter by adding components. maybe you mean the same thing.
What he means, is that the Hull is the "foundation" upon which the ship is built. Certainly components can be added that also effect the ship's performance. But for their to be any point to having discrete hull types you won't be able to start with Hull "X" and add/subtract components from it until you get a Hull "Y".
P.S.get an avatar.


sandlapper wrote:
Additionally, we could (as a bare minimum) have only one graphic per hull, for a total of six. One generic role graphic, scaled 5 different sizes...
Around 30 is a reasonable number from the art angle, though i would distribute them differently. If 6 is all we can get, then the project died.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 6:20 am 
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eleazar wrote:
Role-specific-hulls (i.e. hulls with special properties that make them uniquely suitable for a specific role) are a rather complex solution for the simple task of "sorting all the RPS information".
All that needs to be done is to provide the auto-designer with RPS-role templates. This is necessary anyway, since an effective fleet needs a variety of ships in it.

My thinking on this is that your hull would have a bonus [...], as long as the requirements are met. [edit by Geoff] The idea is that if you want to make a ship with mostly fighters (a carrier) you would use the 'Carrier Role Specific Hull' since you [a bonus if you] meet the requirements. If you want to make a mix ship (beams/fighters/missiles/etc) you would use the Role Neutral hull since you will never meet the requirements of a role specific hull. [edit] Players would be encouraged to [...] use role specific hulls this way.

Note that the RPS would be in the components, and not in the hulls.

eleazar wrote:
I was starting to favor role-specific hulls, but IMHO no one has given a compelling reason for role-specific hulls, other than Davebaby (i.e. to discourage the mono-design fleet) and, as explained previously, IMO that goal can be better achieved in other ways.

That is correct. My paragraph above explains my view of it. I think the hybrid system is superior (as my paragraph says many role specific hulls and 1 role neutral hull).

eleazar wrote:
A more important point: :arrow: If we can really design the weapons/shields/etc. so that there is an effective & interesting RPS interaction with role-neutral hulls, why do we need to recreate the same RPS interaction with specialized hulls? We shouldn't try to accomplish single design goal with two unique mechanisms, unless a single mechanism won't work on it's own.

Refer to my first paragraph. There would be an RPS in the weapons/etc/components, and none in the hulls. The hulls are just a means to give players [bonuses] when they make role specific hulls. I still am not sure about whether this [...] bonus idea is good though.

I might just be better for the role specific hulls to have no [...] bonuses, and no requirements, but just be a template to quick design hulls.

[edited by Geoff - no implementation details!]


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 10:26 am 
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i think it would be fine there there was one and only one role neutral hull and the player stuff whatever onto the ship to create the ship role desire. the drawback could be that one hull may be too boring as we are accustom to see a variety of troops on the battlefield. if there are graphical feedback and other elements are done well, then i don't have much problem stuffing role at the components level. by other elements i mean as one example, what's preventing the player from building a behemonth ship from the very beginning? if there are size restriction then we are back to original problem of having reason to use each different sizes.

i think the bottom line is we don't have to see the same hull over and over again. players will use the same hull over and over again if it is the best hull. if the player is going to use a variety of hull, there has to be some reason for them to do so. one way of creating a reason for using different hulls is to have roles or characteristics for each hull. i think the role of a ship design should be the result of a combination of ship components and the hull and that the hull just have some general characteristics. by general characteristics, i don't mean [big bonus] to SR and engines. that would create too many hull types. instead the all the hull share a few common opposing traits in which if you have an advantage in one end of spectrum, you lose the advantage on the other end. [...edit...] i think a few common opposing traits are enough to keep the player interested in variety without too much complexity with hard bonuses. [It would be better to have bonuses or penalties to limits on ship designs depending on details of the design and whether they conform to particular requirements] this is a better way of promoting role without getting into hundreds of hull designs each with a table of bonuses to memorize.

[edited by Geoff - no implementation details!]

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 11:15 am 
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Sandlapper wrote:
I think we could go as low as 30 different hulls, total.

Assume 5 sizes. (if desired, I'm okay with either 4, or 6, also)

I think you could probably get away with having just 3 hull sizes per role, assuming theyre not the same 3 sizes for all roles.

i.e. a medium scout would be smaller than a medium battleship. In fact, a large scout would probably be smaller than a small carrier.

Also it seems to me (and 3d graphics design people feel free to correct me on this) that its less work to create different sized hull designs of the same role than it is to create a design for an entirely new role. At its simplest, you could simply scale the hull design just as you would the graphics - although a bit of tweaking would probably be needed. The point being that there should be a large degree of similarity between a small, medium and large carrier.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 11:20 am 
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skdiw wrote:
instead the all the hull share a few common opposing traits in which if you have an advantage in one end of spectrum, you lose the advantage on the other end.

I think this is the general thought of what is wanted with different sizes, where small ships are not obsoleted by large ships. Each size has there use throuhgout the game. Advantages and Disadvantages are like Space, Speed, Fuel Consumption, Stealth, Special Equipment/Weapons (eg super large weapons only on largest size).

[edited by Geoff]


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 12:09 pm 
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Why should we have fixed ship roles at all? What will it accomplish save from restricting the player and forcing him to build the same ships every time he plays?
With fixed roles all we will ever see will be a carrier in a carrier hull with all the space cramped with fighters or a SR ship in an SR hull with all the free space filled with the best SR weapon.
It simply would be stupid to build any other kind of ship because of the bonuses applied to the role ships. What is the replay value of a game with the same ships over and over again, without any chance to design a totally differrent ship which is still competitive.

We will see a lot more variety with the design system I have proposed.

4-6 Hull sizes with bonuses according to common sense and physics

[small, bigger, ...]

4-6 Differrent ship shapes with bonuses according to common sense and physics

[sphere, cylinder, wedge]

It would be possible to use any hull shape together with any hull size.
Some combinations might be better for one role, another one for a differrent role.
However no artificial role bonuses would be applied. Why should we need such artificial bonuses if we can just use realworld physics bonuses which everyone can understand and relate to [...]

With this system, smaller ships will never be obsolete, because they have advantages which bigger ships will lack.
We will also see a lot of different ship designs, because there will be no single perfect "role specific" hull which will always be used. IMHO this diversity in ship design is very important to increase the replay value of freeorion.

[edited by Geoff]


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 12:24 pm 
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Kharagh wrote:
4-6 Differrent ship shapes with bonuses according to common sense and physics

Should save the 3d modelling people quite a bit of time :wink:

[edited by Geoff]

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 4:12 pm 
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I've just edited a bunch of posts to remove implementation details. Don't post them, aside from very minor examples, or I'll do it again. They are off topic in this thread.

eleazar wrote:
We shouldn't try to accomplish single design goal with two unique mechanisms, unless a single mechanism won't work on it's own.

This is an important point.

In particular, if there's something that can be accomplished with different ship weapons being balanced appropriately, we don't need different hull types to do it as well.

Similarly, if we have different hull sizes with different properties, then we can only have different hull shapes as well if the shapes are different in a distinctive and interesting way from how the sizes are different.

This may or may not be possible. For example, if ship sizes are distinct due to "physics and common sense" reasons, then we may have the use totally unrelated "game mechanics quirks" to make sizes different, to avoid trying to manipulate the same small set of statistics or bonuses with two should-be-distinct systems.

Regarding "soft" bonuses for making ships that conform to particular rules of design, without using role-specific hulls in which the bonus is pre-applied: This is a possibility. It seems to be outside the scope of this thread, though, and not really what most people mean by "role specific hulls". Regardless, without assuming anything much about how design is done or how it's limited (eg. references to space bonuses or limits at this stage), we can say that in future, we might have variations in design limits or bonuses according to various complicated rules about what components a ship design includes.

I'm still inclined to have the basic set of hulls be different by size, as described in my previous post(s).

Note (Daveybaby) that in this system, a size is absolute, not relative, so a small ship of role X is the same size as a small ship of role Y. The difference is that you probably wouldn't make a small role Y ship, but would instead make large role Y ships, whereas small ships are well-suited to role X.

And again, if we can find a way to make various hull shapes different that doesn't overlap with how sizes are different, and which actually matters, then we can do that as well.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 9:27 pm 
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Kharagh wrote:
Why should we have fixed ship roles at all? What will it accomplish save from restricting the player and forcing him to build the same ships every time he plays?
With fixed roles all we will ever see will be a carrier in a carrier hull with all the space cramped with fighters or a SR ship in an SR hull with all the free space filled with the best SR weapon.
It simply would be stupid to build any other kind of ship because of the bonuses applied to the role ships. What is the replay value of a game with the same ships over and over again, without any chance to design a totally differrent ship which is still competitive.

The player will not build the same hull all the time. Through scouting and gaining enemy information and knowing what they are building you can build the roles you need to counter the roles they are building. This is the nature of an RPS. And an RPS is the only way to avoid the 'bigger size full of the best weapon is better' ships.

Kharagh wrote:
However no artificial role bonuses would be applied. Why should we need such artificial bonuses if we can just use realworld physics bonuses which everyone can understand and relate to [...]

I agree, that I do like artificial bonuses to make role x beat role y. I prefer a natural system. So since the weapon/components will form the RPS, a natural one, role specific hulls and role neutral hulls are just a means to sort the players thinking on ship designs. If there is a carrier hull there, he will build one. If there is no specific hull there, he may build a carrier, but only if the game is balanced.

Kharagh wrote:
With this system, smaller ships will never be obsolete, because they have advantages which bigger ships will lack.

This is what we will do with ship sizes anyway.

Kharagh wrote:
We will also see a lot of different ship designs, because there will be no single perfect "role specific" hull which will always be used. IMHO this diversity in ship design is very important to increase the replay value of freeorion.

No role specific hull will be perfect, as it is in an RPS and it will always have a counter, something that can beat it.

Geoff the Medio wrote:
I've just edited a bunch of posts to remove implementation details. Don't post them, aside from very minor examples, or I'll do it again. They are off topic in this thread.

Ahhhhh. Lol, funny to see how many people cannot talk about these details now.

Geoff the Medio wrote:
In particular, if there's something that can be accomplished with different ship weapons being balanced appropriately, we don't need different hull types to do it as well.

No we don't. If the rps is missiles, shields, armour, lasers, fighters, etc then different role specific hulls become a means of conveying that information to the player. Carrier hulls requires being filled with x% fighters etc. The only issue for me is do we make role specific hulls have more space, then a role neutral hull (where all role specific hulls have the same space and always have a requirement to be met).

Geoff the Medio wrote:
I'm still inclined to have the basic set of hulls be different by size, as described in my previous post(s).

Note (Daveybaby) that in this system, a size is absolute, not relative, so a small ship of role X is the same size as a small ship of role Y. The difference is that you probably wouldn't make a small role Y ship, but would instead make large role Y ships, whereas small ships are well-suited to role X.

Agree. You should be able to have a small size role X even if role X will peform best as a large size, etc.



In my way of thinking - role specific hulls will be closest to a template to quick design a ship. Though you will get +x% space compared to using a role neutral hull. However a role neutral hull doesn't have any requirements. It is balanced this way and the RPS is in the weapons/components. So that way, role specific hulls encourages players to design more specialised hulls as they get maximum effect for grouping weapons/components into a role, eg mostly fighters. However players will still use role neutral hulls since this is the means to not just create a mixed ship design, but to create multi role ships that will have a variety of uses.

Also if the RPS is in the weapon systems/components, then theoretically the player could design their own role specifc hulls (templates) where the % space bonus remains the same, but it is the requirement that the player is choosing. So while there is a disadvantage with role specific hulls where we may not create all the role specific hulls that the RPS allows, this is offset by the fact that the player can create any others that he is able to think of (as the RPS is in the weapons/components).


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 11:49 pm 
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to me it seems like te basic question here is: will having special hulls make the game interesting/fun?

I think the answer to that is yes. even moO2 had a few. And they made the game far more interesting.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2007 12:40 am 
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Thankyou all for your input on this topic, it looks like some good progress has been made on this topic. Consider this thread finished now, so there is no need to post unless there are any last thoughts you feel absolutely must be heard. The thread will be locked in a day or two.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2007 2:22 am 
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Tyreth wrote:
Thankyou all for your input on this topic, it looks like some good progress has been made on this topic. Consider this thread finished now, so there is no need to post unless there are any last thoughts you feel absolutely must be heard. The thread will be locked in a day or two.

So how does this work? Do the Leads stay out of these discussions, for the sake of impartiality, for lack of time, or because they wait to read the whole thing at the end? Or is Lead non-participation an anomaly?

Perhaps this is off-topic, but this discussion is essentially over, and i didn't know where these questions would belong.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2007 3:17 am 
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My non-participation in this thread has been more due to not having thoughts beyond those already expressed, and time. I have been reading the thread though.

Currently I am the only lead doing the designing, so the decision on this topic is going to stem almost exclusively from the content of this thread. There will be a summary of the decisions made shortly on the wiki, probably done by Geoff.

I hope this is answering your question.


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