Playtesting Rev 5689

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yandonman
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#16 Post by yandonman »

research is that it feels a lot less rewarding than it did in MoO2
some thoughts on this (I basically agree with ya)
  • list the next in queue research item in the top bar
  • list the next 4-5 research items in the research queue in a hover text on the research icon in the top bar
  • Restrict the number of items that can be researched at one time (and give research items that can expand this concurrent capacity).
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Geoff the Medio
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#17 Post by Geoff the Medio »

yandonman wrote:list the next in queue research item in the top bar
I've pondered this, along with the ETA in turns to research the top item. Same could be done for the top item on the production queue.
Bigjoe5 wrote:...research is that it feels a lot less rewarding than it did in MoO2
It's also less celebrated in the UI due to just having a sitrep notification, rather than a full screen pop up to inform of the occurrence.

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Sloth
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#18 Post by Sloth »

Bigjoe5 wrote:Another comment I have regarding research is that it feels a lot less rewarding than it did in MoO2 - you're researching tons of techs at once, and it's easy to get caught up in waiting for a particular tech to finish, such that all the other techs that you research in the meantime aren't as meaningful.
Dilvish wrote:I think we should try reducing most of the research times to 1 or 2, leaving the costs the same, long before considering redesigning the whole thing.
Yes that would be a good idea. That and further reducing theories/adding more effects to existing techs.
Geoff the Medio wrote:It's also less celebrated in the UI due to just having a sitrep notification, rather than a full screen pop up to inform of the occurrence.
More celebration would be welcome. :D
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Geoff the Medio
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#19 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Dilvish wrote:...largish number of turns over which techs must be researched, so that we wind up researching 5+ techs in parallel. [...] I think we should try reducing most of the research times to 1 or 2, leaving the costs the same...
Based on Bigjoe5's experience earlier, in which the research rate with the tomography bug penalty was reasonable, I think a better change would be to make most techs more expensive.

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Vezzra
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#20 Post by Vezzra »

Geoff the Medio wrote:I think a better change would be to make most techs more expensive.
I think both should be done. Research costs are generally too low IMO, but there are also far too many techs that take far too many turns. Which results in me starting to frantically enque everything usually at early mid-game just to avoid wasting RP, with no need to make any decision what to research first anymore. Which is no fun at all of course.

Also, the later research boosting techs (i.e. Enclave of the Void) are kind of pointless, because once you've researched them (and finished producing the building in case of EotV), you don't need the bonus anymore. Of course, then I start switching focus on my research colonies, but having 90% of your colonies set to industry focus is a bit monotone... ;)

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Geoff the Medio
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#21 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Vezzra wrote:...too many techs that take far too many turns. Which results in me starting to frantically enqueue everything usually at early mid-game just to avoid wasting RP...
If individual techs cost more, this wouldn't be necessary, as many of them would take about their minimum research times even when using all the RP you can output... unless they are very old / outdated techs, in which case the minimum research time prevents players from going back and quickly researching a whole tree they previously skipped (minimum research times of a series of dependent techs add in series, not parallel), which is useful because it means you can't get the benefits of every tech path by just improving research output first.
Also, the later research boosting techs ... are kind of pointless, because ... you don't need the bonus anymore.
The tech victory should presumably cost a lot more then, so that there's a reason to want late-game research boosting content.

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Dilvish
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#22 Post by Dilvish »

Geoff the Medio wrote:The tech victory should presumably cost a lot more then, so that there's a reason to want late-game research boosting content.
A little while back I boosted the victory tech cost up to 25K, so someone wanting to pursue that path does currently have something to spend a fair chunk of RP on. But it's currently a decidedly uncelebrated path that I think no one chooses (at this time). (on a side note, I think it does eventually make it onto the AI research list but I currently have the AI putting an ultra-low priority into research at that point.)
Geoff the Medio wrote:Based on Bigjoe5's experience earlier, in which the research rate with the tomography bug penalty was reasonable, I think a better change would be to make most techs more expensive.
The tomography bug caused research to be much greater than it should have been for some star types, and only lowered it for some; I don't think we can take any experiences about it as indicators of the reasonableness of tech costs.

Increasing a number of tech costs might very well be a good move (I think probably so) but I think trying to increase the cost of all techs that take 4, 6, 10+ turns so that they are expected to probably use all or nearly all of the empire RP at some projected phase deemed/expected for them to be researched at that point, would work out very poorly. I think the number of turns needs to be reduced, though perhaps not down to 1 or 2; perhaps down to the 1-4 range.

Also, to further address Geoff's concerns about people saving small tech for later and then racing through it:
  • I want to first note that you can't overly focus on research tech and then pursue everything else, or (A) you will likely be overrun, and (B) even if you choose a large enough universe that you weren't overrun, you would be building & expanding your empire so slowly that it would be an inefficient path, not an exploitatively good path. I really don't think we need nor should design the tech system to specifically penalize that approach beyond making sure it would carry its own attendant balancing costs, which I think it does already, as noted.
  • I like yandoman's suggestion of constraining parallel research to only a specified max number of techs, which potentially could be increased a little via tech, and of the top bar display.
  • Also, not all techs being researched in parallel need be treated equally. It could be that we allow the first tech in queue to get it's full allotment, but the next gets a 20% reduction to it's per-turn-max, the next after that a 40% reduction, etc., and that 20% reduction could again be subject to improvement via tech. I think that, by adding situational turns-required, would do a great deal to mitigate Geoff's concern about people racing through then-cheap tech (even a single-turn tech would have its full cost as its base per-turn-limit, and reducing it's allotment by any amount would make it take 2 turns, doubling the time until the successor tech could start research). It would certainly put more strategic emphasis on queue planning (which I think there is a pretty decent amount of now, but a bit more wouldn't hurt).
I'd also like to second the motion for more celebration :D
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qsswin
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#23 Post by qsswin »

Dilvish wrote: [*]I like yandoman's suggestion of constraining parallel research to only a specified max number of techs, which potentially could be increased a little via tech, and of the top bar display.
[*]Also, not all techs being researched in parallel need be treated equally. It could be that we allow the first tech in queue to get it's full allotment, but the next gets a 20% reduction to it's per-turn-max, the next after that a 40% reduction, etc., and that 20% reduction could again be subject to improvement via tech. I think that, by adding situational turns-required, would do a great deal to mitigate Geoff's concern about people racing through then-cheap tech (even a single-turn tech would have its full cost as its base per-turn-limit, and reducing it's allotment by any amount would make it take 2 turns, doubling the time until the successor tech could start research). It would certainly put more strategic emphasis on queue planning (which I think there is a pretty decent amount of now, but a bit more wouldn't hurt).[/list]

I'd also like to second the motion for more celebration :D
The second idea I quoted seems less like putting more strategy in queue planning and more like putting more micromanagment. Already, whenever some of your techs approach completion you need to shuffle around/add stuff to your queue. That change would seem to make it worse at that time, and encourage pointless decisions (you have to choose which tech is most important without really being able to know).

As for the first one, would that be necessary if we reduce the number of turns required for many techs?

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Vezzra
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#24 Post by Vezzra »

Geoff the Medio wrote:If individual techs cost more, this wouldn't be necessary, as many of them would take about their minimum research times even when using all the RP you can output... unless they are very old / outdated techs, in which case the minimum research time prevents players from going back and quickly researching a whole tree they previously skipped (minimum research times of a series of dependent techs add in series, not parallel), which is useful because it means you can't get the benefits of every tech path by just improving research output first.
Ack, but it shouldn't be done excessively. Which is the case now, IMO. A miminum research time of 10 turns should be the absolute maximum, and be very rare. 3 turns should be the norm/average, everything above 5 the exception.

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Sloth
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#25 Post by Sloth »

Vezzra wrote:A miminum research time of 10 turns should be the absolute maximum, and be very rare. 3 turns should be the norm/average, everything above 5 the exception.
That sounds like a good rule of thumb. Singularity of Transcendence could be an exception though.
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Vezzra
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Re: Playtesting Rev 5689

#26 Post by Vezzra »

Sloth wrote:Singularity of Transcendence could be an exception though.
Ack, sounds reasonable.

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