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PostPosted: Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:53 am 
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Vacuum Dragon
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Right now there are five metabolisms in FO. Organic, Robotic and Lithic are identical to each other (each has three specials to boost population), and Self-sustaining is like any of those with the three specials for granted . Then the phototrophic has no specific specials but is affected by the star type.
Now there is the seed for a new metabolism, gaseous (or sth like that), that presumably can only live (until late game) on GGs.

I'd like to have less simetry among the three first. What could be done for this? Something that applies to all the species of each metabolism.

...

Maybe there's no point on doing that, and the only focus should be on differentiating species. For example adding more traits.

Some traits could be metabolism-specific (but not granted to every species of that metabolism, I'm talking about species traits). For example:
- Genetists (can have it only organic species): makes cheaper and faster (half cost, half time) xenological genetics.
- Adaptive genome (organic only): makes cheaper and faster xenological hybrids.
- Biomorphs (organic only): Gives bonus to spionage/diplomacy, if ever implemented.
- Asteroid dwellers (lithic only?): can inhabitate asteroid belts (like exobots).
- Ravager (robotic only?): after each combat, a percentage (10%?) of the destroyed robotic ships, both allied and enemy, can be salvaged and put into service (with pilots of the ravager species, ships piloted by the ravager species must be present in the ravaging fleet).
- Expert Breeder (organic only): has a boost on the build time of organic hulls (-25%?).
- Electronics Specialists (robotic only): the robotic hulls build by this species are 33% cheaper (only applies to the hull cost, not the rest of parts).
- Asteroid Makers (lithic only): the asteroid hulls constructed by this species has +40% hull points (only applies to the hull HPs, not the armour plate parts, so only for the biggest hulls it would be comparable to an extra extern slot with armour plate).

Can't think of anything for self-sustaining or phototropic. That bugs me. But I got some ideas for specials somehow related:
- Tranquility Extract: if planet focus set to growth, cancels all the effects of xenophobia in the planets within supply range.
- <Gas #1, #2 and #3 improbable names>: Can only happen on GGs. If focus is set to growth, it gives +1 to supply range. I would give those less probability (and stronger protection) than the organic biosoup and the such, to make it really hard to get the three of them on a single game.

Oh, and the anti-specials: specials that can be exploited (by setting the focus to growth) to disturb the populations of certain metabolisms in the vecinity (maybe with the same spread mechanics than the biowarfare building we have, because supply group doesn't make much sense here) by causing a malus on population, just the opposite of a regular metabolism special. To remove the effect, the enemies must conquer the planet and change the focus, or kill all the population and revert the planet to outpost status. There could be one type for each metabolism (including self-sustaining, phototrophic and gaseous).


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 24, 2018 11:14 am 
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Space Dragon

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I really like the idea of species traits. But I think its too early in the project for such a thing, because balancing is already difficult enough and has to be redone and redone and redone.

If we make the traits have a noticable big effect, we HAVE to care constantly about balancing.

If we make the traits having a small effect, its only for flavor. So then.. why bother?

I think before introducing so much complexity we would need either a stable game (not sure if that will ever happen) or a tool/framework which helps with balancing.

Also AI is a special concern. The traits should be designed in a way that the AI cań easily use them. So e.g. if the AI can judge the usefulness of ships based also on the actual hull cost, its not a biggie to add a trait which gives a boost to certain hull types.

So actually before introducing a new type of trait I guess there needs to be an effort.
So for the long run maybe someone of the AI team can judge what kinds of traits are easy to add.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:23 pm 
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Vacuum Dragon
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Ophiuchus wrote:
I really like the idea of species traits. But I think its too early in the project for such a thing, because balancing is already difficult enough and has to be redone and redone and redone.
I completely agree (with this and almost all your unquoted words). I think this is something near the tail end of the road map (as well as some other things I posted)
This post is the fruit of some insomnia. When I have an idea/concern, I tend to post it here as a journal. But I trust dev's wit to ignore them and focus on what they find more important. And I'm not expecting dev's to keep a track of every suggestion in the forum (in fact, not even of every PR or issue in the github). If time goes by and something "important" (IMO) gets no attention, forgotten in the forum, I could point it out (again with no expectations or bad judgements of the results, dev team has a very solid and sound view of the game and its development, that's good) or learn to try and implement it.

I myself think that there are many other points more important than this one. For example, I really want influence, diplomacy, AI's self-learning that could put an end for good to the AI weakness, customizable species, monster-like ship designs (a whole new organic hull subline, based on monsters design), a complete overhaul of the tech tree (mostly to help differentiate strategies), a complete redesign of the weapon/shield/armour system (IMO we need paper-scissor-rock system) and some others I can recall now.

Quote:
If we make the traits having a small effect, its only for flavor. So then.. why bother?
I slightly disagree with this. For example, differentiating between organic, lithic and robotic has small effect in the game, but it brings a lot of flavour.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 4:58 am 
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Space Squid

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Just want to point out that robotic isn't quite identical to the other two; it lets you use Robotic Interface Shields, unlike Organic and Lithic. The natural extension of that concept to me would be to tie in Organic species to the Solar Concentrator, and do something similar with Lithic and the asteroids hull line.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 9:13 am 
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We would need either a bunch of new species to utilize such traits (not all need extra traits) or some kind of random species name and trait selection during setup/universe generation (sub-species?).
I would hope most traits would aim to balance themselves out as well, with sparse use of traits that augment a species for over/under weighted attributes.

My main concern with a new metabolism is disturbing a potential to balance between metabolisms (easier to do so with a prime number).
If we want to keep that potential and add this one, might consider removing Self-Sustaining and reassign Trith, Acirema, Kobuntra, Nymnmn, and Experimentors.
This new metabolism could take on a definition of planet size determining environment.
If environments can be reworked to accept different conditions other than planet type (star type, planet size), we might do away with a lot of the special casing needed for those two metabolisms.

Ship parts/hulls (and if/how they relate to metabolisms) can be worked on in meantime, but need a rough plan along with other mechanic additions (influence/diplomacy) before any meaningful shift of tech tree can be done.
Traits which have some effect on tech tree should be added before rework, whoever does the work on tech tree can then account for those traits.
Adding a bunch afterwards means another balance pass for new variables, which I'd gamble would not be done with as much attention.

Expanding on wheals comment, Phototrophic->Energy, leaving a new line needed for Self-Sustaining and/or Sly's metabolism.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:05 am 
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I'd avoid adding another metabolism type. Any more and they will be too indistinct, and would require too much extra content to use them (eg. species and metabolism-specific specials).


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