Design: Ship Range

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PowerCrazy
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#16 Post by PowerCrazy » Tue Jul 29, 2003 6:28 am

Impaler your post does make sense. BUT we need to limit range for a gameplay reason rather than a realistic one ;).

We will need ship range from v.1 to final. This is to prevent a stone age "rush". Becuase as we get better and better tech i'm sure there will be a critical point where you can get sufficent firepower to bomb a planet to oblivion with your 1000-odd ships even if you take heavy losses.

The way a traditional 4X game unfolds is something like this.

Turns 1-50. Build up your homeworld sufficently to build a colony ship.

Turns 50-150. eXplore and eXpand.

Turns 150-250. Battle lines are drawn resources are eXploited.

Turns 250-end. eXterminate.

If range is not limited in some way it may be possible for a player to eXterminate in the 50-150 range by simply ignoring infrastructure and building lots of tiny ships that have 1 bomb on them or the equivalent. And then send them en masse to a homeworld. Blam the game isn't fun anymore. As it just became an RTS instead of a 4X game. Which is fine if we weren't concerned about the other 3X's.

In the above scenario neither players ability was tested and the only "counter" (another RTS term) is to build lots of tiny ships with one laser on them or the equivalent. Just doesn't seem very fun to me. I want a 4X game not an RTS in space.
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Nightfish
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#17 Post by Nightfish » Tue Jul 29, 2003 6:59 am

Having starlanes does not dictate not having limited range. All starlanes do is giving you a bonus to speed and nothing more.

PC's argument seems sound to me. Range helps to delay conflict which is a good thing. Also if we don't limit range certain tactics like building a few dozen scout ships and then finding and rushing your enemy will pay off.

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utilae
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#18 Post by utilae » Tue Jul 29, 2003 8:42 am

People still did rushes in Moo2 and there was range in Moo2.

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#19 Post by tsev » Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:23 pm

Nightfish wrote:What more do we need for range than the distance between two stars? That ought to be in V0.1, right? I mean, how would the game work without distance?


0.1 does have distance between stars, but I don't believe we're going to worry about limiting range....as other people have mentioned, range will largely have to do with tech, so I'd expect it to come in a later version.

I like the MOO2 fuel cell idea, too, btw.

We just need to make sure that a player doesn't start the game placed in a system where they are too far from any other systems due to the limited starting range. Such a player would be stuck in their home system until they developed enough tech to expand, thus would unfairly lose.
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Impaler
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#20 Post by Impaler » Tue Jul 29, 2003 4:11 pm

That happens too me a LOT in Original Moo, if nothing colonizable is within 3 parseces your screwed untill you get a Fuel Cell tecnology.

I think a good way to prevent that senario is to make ship design flexible enough that I can make extended range Cology ships without them being prohibativly expensive.

I am also hoping for a more wholistic ship design process that takes more things into consideration and in a more linear way. Like why cant I add another one of thouse damn fuel cells to extend my range?
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#21 Post by tsev » Tue Jul 29, 2003 4:33 pm

Impaler wrote:That happens too me a LOT in Original Moo, if nothing colonizable is within 3 parseces your screwed untill you get a Fuel Cell tecnology.

I think a good way to prevent that senario is to make ship design flexible enough that I can make extended range Cology ships without them being prohibativly expensive.


I don't think it will be a problem if we deal with this at universe-design time. We will ensure that there is a minimum number of planets within starting range of any player's starting location.
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#22 Post by krum » Sun Aug 03, 2003 4:05 pm

Impaler wrote:I am also hoping for a more wholistic ship design process that takes more things into consideration and in a more linear way. Like why cant I add another one of thouse damn fuel cells to extend my range?


I was thiking about that and here's what I came up with: on each ship you can fit fuel modules - for 1 turn of movement - called fuel cells. The cost of these cells is depenent on the size of the ship you are fitting them on. Like the size of a fuel cell increases with the square of the increase of the available space. The size can be lowered by minituarisation.

First, we avoid rushes. Second, starbases and things like heavily armed defence ships with a very limited range and scout ships with barely any weaponry and a great range - these things COW. Also the restriction of building huge ships in th beggining. It all comes down to minituarisation of fuel cells - whether through new fuels types or whetever.

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#23 Post by drekmonger » Mon Aug 04, 2003 2:03 pm

Esp. if we are going to seg into using 3d models for ships, we should use a hardpoint system simlair to the later mechwarrior computer games and minuature battletech rules.

The idea is that you can only add certain components to certain slots. The benefits are we can eliminate cheesy designs (like loading your ship up with fuel cells) and it will be easier to make the 3d models reflect the actual design decisions of the player.

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utilae
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#24 Post by utilae » Mon Aug 04, 2003 10:35 pm

We have started discussing modular ship design in this thread:
http://www.artclusta.com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=173

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#25 Post by Tatiana » Wed Aug 20, 2003 11:28 am

PowerCrazy wrote:Impaler your post does make sense. BUT we need to limit range for a gameplay reason rather than a realistic one ;).

We will need ship range from v.1 to final. This is to prevent a stone age "rush". Becuase as we get better and better tech i'm sure there will be a critical point where you can get sufficent firepower to bomb a planet to oblivion with your 1000-odd ships even if you take heavy losses.

The way a traditional 4X game unfolds is something like this.

Turns 1-50. Build up your homeworld sufficently to build a colony ship.

Turns 50-150. eXplore and eXpand.

Turns 150-250. Battle lines are drawn resources are eXploited.

Turns 250-end. eXterminate.


Rush is always a good thing. It prevent from endless building and expansion. When player fears a rush he builds a defence for it. So game is more balanced this way. I think early attacks should be allowed to rise the quality of game play.

Path showed by PC is bit too long for me. 250 turns game ? It is good in single player when anyone can sit at his computer and ignore time completly. For the multiplayer game it should be faster. More then like Moo2 did :
Small map
T0-T50 : WARS.
Medium map
T0-40/50 : colonization / tech / building
T50-70 : tech and building
T70-T100 : WARS.
Large map
T0-50/70 : colonization / tech / building
T50-100 : tech and building
T100-T150 : WARS.

Fuel cells should be limited. It is a good idea. Just dont make it too limited

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Nightfish
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#26 Post by Nightfish » Fri Aug 22, 2003 6:31 am

I'm not sure discussing whether a game should take 100 or 200 turns is actually helpful right now. We don't even know how long a turn will take so you can't just say "200 turns is too long". If each turn takes 20 seconds the game will be done soon enough. Also we will have a feature called "saving". That lets you record a game in it's present state and continue it at a later date! :shock:

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utilae
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#27 Post by utilae » Fri Aug 22, 2003 7:24 am

This discussion has slowed down. :?

Fuels cells would be cool, with the module idea we have been discussing in brainstorming. So these fuel modules could allow ships to go as far as you desire. You could fill your ships with fuel modules to go across the galaxy or you could have very few fuel modules.

Other than that, Moo2s fuel system was always good, imo.

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Odi
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#28 Post by Odi » Wed Aug 27, 2003 2:25 am

Well, I was going to suggest the following things anyway, so why not here?

I would suggest a 2-type supply-system, fuel and supplies. [SEIV-like](I'll just do a summary, since I've worked for about 11 hours and its 4 am here...)

FTL-Fuel:
Fuel is used to operate FTL-engines. Without Fuel Interstellar-travel is impossible, in-game that would mean that the fleet that has run out of fuel is supposed to stay within the starsystem (or a particular point within the starlane if inter-starlane-combat will be possible, otherwise entering a starlane without enough fuel has to be prohibitet). A fleet-wide stock, I guess, is the best solution. Each ship consumes fuel according to its hull-size & engine. If a fleet is running out of fuel, you can split off great fuel-consumers and transfer all fuel to the splitted fleet in order to, for example, overdrive engine-speed to reach a certain point before an enemy fleet does. I guess I don't have to demonstrate the great tactical-options(killing of supply-ships (that store fuel&supplies... hmm, like the name says :) ), increasing range by adding huge supply-fleets). Solar-Sails / other techs that produce fuels while the fleet stays in a system are also an nice option.

Fuel-consumption is calculated by distance and speed (decreasing travel-speed saves fuel, since exponential more energy is needed to travel faster).

Supplies:
Enfols water, oygen, food, amunition, spar-parts, and so on.
Needed to supply crew & weapons & sub-light travel. Without supplies a fleet is an easy prey, since weapons/shields won't work (or just operates on a really low level). If a fleet runs out of supplies, crew begins to starve after the reservers are gone (would be a nice thing, just starve a fleet and then attack & capture the more or less defenseless fleet (depending on the ai-level [automated security-stations, and and and...] ).

Well, that are my 2 points.

(awww, Im a little bit tired, besides my english isn't that well, any corrections / feedback that is offtopic -> pm please :) )
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Impaler
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#29 Post by Impaler » Wed Aug 27, 2003 4:37 am

I think we should just say that life support systems are totaly closed loops, basicaly the life support is indefinate and only consumes energy. Its incredibly impractical to be using stored food and water for interstellar travel. So we dont have to worry about the crew running out of food or any of the complexites that would result from that (which is a LOT if you think about it).

Amunition sounds like something that we should limit though. We can say Amunition is generalized for each ship. We have some component called "magazine" on the ship which holds "amo" points and each shoot from a gun or launch of a missle consumes some of that amo. Its a bit like the MechWarrior system but simplifed a bit. So now if you use up all your missles in one fight your ships cant run around endlessly firing missles in battle after battle. To reload missles and fuel you would need to return to a "amunition dump" or "fuel Depot" respectivly, these are facilites that make amunition and fuel and can be located on planets or in Space Stations or even other ships. They ofcorse need access to raw materials and labor to make anything.
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utilae
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#30 Post by utilae » Wed Aug 27, 2003 4:53 am

Moo2 had ammo for missiles, they recharged after a battle, but it worked. Though beam weapons may not need ammo.

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