Empire Types - "Origins"

For what's not in 'Top Priority Game Design'. Post your ideas, visions, suggestions for the game, rules, modifications, etc.

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Vezzra
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Empire Types - "Origins"

#1 Post by Vezzra »

In the Influence mechanics brainstorming thread the issue with supply disconnected empires has been brought up once again, and it made me think about how to solve the inherent problems with them.

Oberlus pointed out, regarding supply disconnected empires (and how increased IP maintenance costs for colonies not supply connected to the capital would even more adversely affect them):
Oberlus wrote:They already suffer the low stockpile extraction capacities, losing production when setting some planets to stockpile focus, and having to devote also extra systems to compensate for extra influence costs will have to be balanced somehow, since distributed empires are currently not the most efficient or effective strategy. Maybe a policy that reduces or disables the increased IP costs for disconnected systems, or reducing/disabling it depending on the stockpile trait of the species in the disconnected systems/planets, or both, or something else. I prefer a policy than a building, like the one suggested by labgnome.
To address this, I want to make a proposal:

These are all very valid points, and IMO there is an underlying issue, a root cause for all these problems. And instead of trying to patch up one of the symptoms, I'd prefer to go straight for the root issue.

This root issue, IMO, is the completely different nature of a supply disconnected empire (let's keep that term, as it best describes the nature of these stealthy/distributed empires). It has very different requirements compared to "normal" empires to actually work properly and offer an equally viable/playable option. Yet the starting conditions, or the assets you start with, are the same for all empires, the only real difference is the starting species. However, you can't differentiate empires sufficiently just by the "properties" contributed by species traits, to really achieve the vastly different setup you'd already need at game start for supply disconnected empires.

Which is why I propose (already for 0.5) to introduce something akin to the "Origin" concept in Stellaris. There would be several "Origins" to choose from, and that choice would happen at the game setup, in addition to the selection of the starting species.

An "Origin" (or "Empire Type", or whatever we want to call it) would be some kind of "starting configuration" of your empire, which should/could include the following:
  • Size of homeworld
  • Maybe extra features present on your homeworld, e.g. certain specials (we could e.g. have an "Origin" where you start on a Gaia World - of course such an advantage needs to be balanced by certain disadvantages)
  • Starting buildings on your homeworld
  • Starting ships/fleets
  • Techs already researched at game start
  • Maybe certain special techs that you can only unlock by choosing a certain Origin, and would therefore be only available to empires/players that choose that Origin
  • Policies available and policies already adopted at game start
  • As with techs, there could be certain policies you can only unlock by selecting a certain Origin
  • How many/which of the nearby systems are already discovered
Not all Origins need to be compatible with all starting species and vice versa.

We can then design one (or more) Origins which are specifically designed to suit playing a supply disconnected empire (by providing them with a properly set up "starting configuration" of policies, techs etc., that will make playing such an empire a viable choice).

IMO such an approach is the only way of making fundamentally different strategies viable right from game start. If everyone starts with the same prerequisites (same starting buildings, ships, techs, policies etc.) and has to somehow acquire the prerequisites for a certain strategy they want to employ, things like supply disconnected empires can never really work. Simply because they need to be played very different right from the start - you can't play Sly like a normal empire, trying to get the techs, policies and whatever you need to actually be able to effectively play a supply disconnected, stealthy empire.

If however we provide the means to have actually very different starting prerequisites (the policies, techs, etc. needed to adjust the game mechanics to the requirements of a supply disconnected empire), then things look a lot better. IMO.

Thoughts?

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#2 Post by Ophiuchus »

Vezzra wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 4:58 pm Thoughts?
Starting strategy might depend a lot on galaxy layout. On accessibility and number of natives and good environment planets nearby.
Currently we put the "starting pack" into the species - in theory if you start with a stealthy species and you acquire a native one early with good stockpile, you can go the peaceful hidden expansion path.
Also if you acquire a good native supply species/tiny planets/use exobots you can easily play a centralized sly empire.

Being even more specialized for playing a starting strategy if you do not even know your galaxy yet strikes me as a bad idea-in that regard I would find it more interesting if one could choose such a starting pack some turns into the game.

Still what we have now seems more KISS.

Having different policies for resource/influence generation based on different empire layout would suffice IMO and more in line with starting species != empire thinking.
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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#3 Post by Krikkitone »

It might be better to have certain techs/policies only researchable/usable if a species is in your empire, and starting species could come with certain techs/assets already enabled for the empire that has them as starting species

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#4 Post by LienRag »

Vezzra wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 4:58 pm
Which is why I propose (already for 0.5) to introduce something akin to the "Origin" concept in Stellaris. There would be several "Origins" to choose from, and that choice would happen at the game setup, in addition to the selection of the starting species.

An "Origin" (or "Empire Type", or whatever we want to call it) would be some kind of "starting configuration" of your empire, which should/could include the following:
  • Size of homeworld
  • Maybe extra features present on your homeworld, e.g. certain specials (we could e.g. have an "Origin" where you start on a Gaia World - of course such an advantage needs to be balanced by certain disadvantages)
  • Starting buildings on your homeworld
  • Starting ships/fleets
  • Techs already researched at game start
  • Maybe certain special techs that you can only unlock by choosing a certain Origin, and would therefore be only available to empires/players that choose that Origin
  • Policies available and policies already adopted at game start
  • As with techs, there could be certain policies you can only unlock by selecting a certain Origin
  • How many/which of the nearby systems are already discovered
Not all Origins need to be compatible with all starting species and vice versa.

Thoughts?
I like it, but it's a big change, it needs to be carefully thought out...

And like Oberlus, having one's strategy driven from the beginning rather than chosen by adapting to the topology of the starting empire is something I'm a bit wary of.

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#5 Post by Oberlus »

Vezzra wrote: Sun Aug 02, 2020 4:58 pm IMO there is an underlying issue, a root cause for all these problems. And instead of trying to patch up one of the symptoms, I'd prefer to go straight for the root issue.
To be sure we are on the same page, I'd try to specify what is the symptom and what the root issue (please correct me if I'm wrong):
- The symptom is the innability to concentrate on a single (or few) planet(s) the PPs produced in the whole empire.
- The root issue is the supply mechanics.

When stockpile was designed, one rule to follow was that bypassing standard supply mechanics had to come with a cost: and advantage (the ability to bypass supply blockades and to ignore supply distance restrictions) compensated with a disadvantage (the need to sacrifice some PP/RP output to get extra stockpile extraction, via stockpile focus).

Some species were granted superior stockpile extraction capacities but at the expense of not having other good traits.

Combined with stealth, disconnected empires entangled within other non-allied empires are a possibility.
Without stealth, both planetary and for ships, I can't imagine how a disconnected empire could survive, with every planet "behind enemy lines", impossible to defend.
Just in case, I don't consider "clustered" disconnected empires that do not entangle within enemy supply lines, since that seems like a rather uninteresting scenario: nothing to win from not using supply connection, just a bizarre case. Unless we are talking about an empire that wants to go unnoticed, so stealth would be a thing and then colonies entangled within non-allied supply lines would be a thing too.

In the end, distributed and stealth go hand in hand, at least for integral strategies (strategies that encompass/influence most of the game development, or at least early and mid game).

There are some niche for non-stealth stockpile use:
- Building stuff behind enemy lines. E.g. you conquer an enemy planet but he cut your supply back to your space, and you could really use some more troop ships where your rading party is, behind enemy lines. So you put divert some of your main supply group's PP to stockpile to use it in the conquered, disconnected planet without having to actually dismantle the enemies blockade back home.
- Not letting PP in blockaded systems go to waste.
- Being able to save some PP for later. E.g. until some tech is finished to produce better ship designs.

All these three cases are rather circumstantial and do not conform integral strategies. They are just some tools you can use in certain situations.

So, to me, the whole subject is about stealth disconnected empires. The viability of that strategy depends mostly on stockpile & planetary stealth traits, as well as in researching stealth hulls and parts to be able to colonize unmolested.

I don't see anything from the Origins/Empire Type suggestion to address that in a more direct way than we can already do with species traits and policies.
In that line, we could create new traits or policies to grant earlier/easier access to the stealth hulls/parts, or one or two policies to improve stockpile extraction (one could grant an unfocused flat bonus, one a focused pop-based bonus; I thing something like the latter is already in master).
It seems to me that this whole Origins idea is traits and policies with steps and more restricted. I'm not fond to the idea for now.

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#6 Post by labgnome »

So I think this idea has some potential. Namely for story immersion purposes. Several of the species in Free Orion have fluff that suggests a somewhat different starting setup. As someone who likes to roleplay I think that the idea could help make the game far more enjoyable.

In fact I would like to propose special origins for some of the species.

Playable Species
  • Abaddoni: "Mother Computer" start with unique Mother building on homeworld, works like weaker collective thought network that is not disrupted by passing ships, and also prevents rebellions on all planets of your starting species so long as that species owns the capitol.
  • Chato: "Gormoshk Mounts" start with Gormoshk Ranch building on homeworld, gives growth focus but causes low stability on surrounding planets of other species, can also be built on any good environment planet with your starting species with a Bright or Very Bright sun.
  • Eaxaw: "Precursor Derelict" start with a Dragon's Tooth and 2 troop ships instead of regular starting fleet.
  • Egassem: "Individual Fiefdoms" start with 2 troop ships instead of colony ship and outpost ship, also grants Fiefdoms military policy which gets a troop bonus for planets of surrounding alien species and a stability malus for proximity of imperial species colonies.
  • Human: "Luna" start with Resonant Moon special on homeworld, get special Lunar Mining Bases, Lunar Research Outposts and Lunar Black Sites economic policies that grant production, research and influence respectively from the resonant moon special while negating it's stealth bonus.
  • Scylior: "Damaged Overmind" start with Damaged Mind special on homeworld which grants a bonus to research, can repair with Brain Samples found in Ancient Ruins for the Restored Mind special which grants homeworld psi-dom focus and a bonus to influence.
  • Sly: "Overlooked Exchange" start with unique spacial flux bubble hull colony ship instead of regular colony ship and the tech to build more.
  • Thrith: "Cosmic Awareness" start with telepathic detection of species out to 5 jumps and growth penalty for each nearby species.
Native Species
  • Cynos: "Brood Chambers" start with Maternal Plant special on homeworld, which grants a population bonus, also sets and planet type to random planet in the good to adequate environmental range.
  • Derthean: "Goddess of Peace" start with unique Temple building on homeworld, that gives a bonus to influence and stockpile, and also grants unique Genetic Caste social policy that gives higher stability and lower infrastructure on planets with organic species.
  • Gis Guf Gthrim: "Amber Expanse" start with Amber Expanse special on homeworld, which boosts population and stability, also grants Planetary Ecology technology and reduces the cost of Symbiotic Biology technology.
  • Kobuntura: "Dark Enclave" gives stability from Ancient Ruins and Honeycomb specials.
  • Lembala'Lam: "Evening of Existence" gives constant population and grants planetary cloud cover and lifecycle manipulation technologies.
  • Setinon: "Biomechanical Technology" grants a reduction in time and cost for Cyborgs and Organic Structures.
  • Sslith: "Vreen Hunting Grounds" start with Vreen special on homeworld, which gives stability and must be supply connected to any colonies of the species or the population will die off.
  • Tae Ghirus: "The Allegiance" grants bonus to influence of surrounding planets of alien species and Allegiance social policy, which gives a bonus to stability and a malus to stockpile.
  • Ugmors: "Return to Larar" start with Larar Drifts special on homeworld, which gives growth and must be supply connected to any colonies of the species or the population will loose stability.
All of my contributions should be considered released under creative commons attribution share-alike license, CC-BY-SA 3.0 for use in, by and with the Free Orion project.

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#7 Post by Vezzra »

Ok, I'll try to address the various questions and concerns that have been raised:

First, and most importantly, I think I need to clarify or state more clearly what the fundamental design goals of the proposals are:
  1. The decision about what kind of game I want to play/which fundamental strategy I want to play (peace loving tree huggers/bloodthirsty warmongers/mysterious stealthy empire hiding in the shadows of deep space/...) must not depend on the specific conditions of my starting position.
  2. Maintaining/getting back to FO's fundamental design decision of species!=empire, which means preventing to pack more and more things into species that actually are meant to provide the means to play a certain "type" of empire.
Ad 1.: Apparently that issue is worse than I thought, because some of the answers here indicate that your specific starting position/conditions dictate what kind of strategies you can employ to a very high degree. I haven't perceived the issue as that severe, but I haven't played a game myself in over two years, so I'll take your word for it.

If that's indeed the case, I consider that a fundamental design flaw which must be fixed. Starting position/conditions definitely should have an impact on your early strategic decisions, but by no means it should dictate the fundamental options. Wether I want to play a stealthy supply disconnected empire, or a peaceful empire focused on scientific achievements, I should be able to do so regardless of starting position/conditions.

That said, in no way are Origins meant to prevent/restrict you from using the options your specific starting position/conditions might offer you, should you so choose. There definitely needs to be a "default"/"normal"/"balanced" Origin which doesn't lean toward a specific strategy right away, but lets you decide on that based on what you find around your starting position. Furthermore, there should be a range of how broad or specific the various Origins are. Some Origins only slightly more specific than the "default" one, some very specific (I'd consider the Origin enabling stealthy supply disconnected empires as very specific).

Currently, that choice of fundamental strategy happens more or less by selection of starting species - but that's a half-baked "solution" that doesn't work very well IMO, Sly and the issues with supply disconnected empires the example here.

Anyway, things that determine the nature of your empire shouldn't depend on species too much(!!!), because of species!=empire.

Therefore, ad 2.: I don't like having things like special techs, policies, etc. tied to (starting) species. These are empire specific things. Certain species might give you easier access to certain things, but if we cram too much stuff into species, the species!=empire design decision will be hard to hold on to.

That does not mean that (starting) species should be irrelevant to those things - most certainly not! But these things should not rely too much on species. Examples: Wanting to play a research-focused empire with a starting species that abysmally sucks at everything science-related is probably a bad idea, for that you'd need a species good at sciene. Wanting to play an empire of ruthless conquerors with a species that abysmally sucks at everything combat related is probably a bad idea (although it probably makes for some quite hilarious gameplay... ;)), you'd need a species like Eaxaw for that.

But: If I want to play a stealthy supply disconnected empire, I don't want to do it only with a species specifically designed for that and only that strategy (with everything needed for that baked into the species definition), but at least be able to choose between several species suited for that (but not only that) strategy (e.g. Laenfa).

To achieve that, we need to separate the things you need to pursue certain strategies from species.

What kind of elements will be included into the various Origins (techs, starting buildings/fleets, policies, etc.) will be subject to further discussion. However, I have to say, I always wanted to have more choice regarding the initial setup of my empire beyond the starting species. Having a set of choices which offer me different setups of starting techs, policies, buildings, fleets etc. sounds interesting to me.

To achieve all that, I need something that gives me more flexibility, more choice at game setup. If being able to pursue certain fundamental strategies (especially some of the more specific) depends on if I find the right things near enough early enough, get the required techs fast enough to actually be able to implement that strategy, and then maybe even being locked into a very narrow set of choices regarding e.g. research (to keep staying ahead of other empires in certain crucial areas to be able to continue executing that strategy), then, as I said, I consider that a fundamental design flaw.

The Origin mechanic is supposed to enable achieving these things. It is not supposed to restrict you or force you to lock you into decisions that might not work with the starting position/conditions you find yourself in.

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#8 Post by Vezzra »

Ophiuchus wrote: Mon Aug 03, 2020 11:07 amStill what we have now seems more KISS.
What we have now is inadequate, IMO.

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#9 Post by Vezzra »

Oberlus wrote: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:33 pmJust in case, I don't consider "clustered" disconnected empires that do not entangle within enemy supply lines, since that seems like a rather uninteresting scenario: nothing to win from not using supply connection, just a bizarre case.
Haven't thought much about what other kinds of supply disconnected empires could be possible (besides the obvious stealthy ones), but what you describe here doesn't necessarily need to be bizarre.

Maybe we could design an Origin which makes a strategy possible where you do not need to care about supply connections, but right from start aim for the most valuable systems, even if they are too far away to be reached soon by extending your supply far enough. That would be an empire consisting of disconnected "islands". Advantage: scoop up the most valuable worlds faster than "normal" empires. It also couldn't be hurt by cutting certain parts of it off in a war. Not depending on supply connections can be a very powerful advantage, even if you're not stealthy - but only if you're sufficiently efficient at it.

And IIRC, that has been an issue with the IS mechanic as well - that aside from going all the way to play a Sly empire (which, sidenote, shouldn't be a thing because of species!=empire!), the IS doesn't really offer much for all other empires/strategies/playstyles.

Maybe, with Origins, we can finally provide more possibilities here...?
So, to me, the whole subject is about stealth disconnected empires.
Um, no, that only triggered the idea, or made me aware of some more fundamental issues which IMO need to be addressed (see my post above - starting position having far too much impact on your choices of fundamental strategy).

Stealthy supply disconnected empires are just the by far most obvious example.
I don't see anything from the Origins/Empire Type suggestion to address that in a more direct way than we can already do with species traits and policies.
Addressing that by packing more and more into species traits is bad design IMO, I don't want to do that (even if I can).

Policies addressing that need to be availabe from start creates even more issues:
In that line, we could create new traits or policies to grant earlier/easier access to the stealth hulls/parts, or one or two policies to improve stockpile extraction (one could grant an unfocused flat bonus, one a focused pop-based bonus; I thing something like the latter is already in master).
Or you could add more special techs unlocked/provided by species traits, or generally available - and here is the heart of the issue:

To stay with the stealthy empire example, there are a couple of prerequisites/requirements which are specific to that specific strategy. A strategy you can't start employing far into the game, but right away. At the time you meet the first neighbors, you have to be able to pull the entire thing off - otherwise you're screwed.

Which means, we need to provide the player with the means to do so right from the start. They have to have access to the policies, techs, buildings, ship hulls/parts etc. needed to completely fly under the radar. Or at least they need to be able to gain that access very quickly, meaning within the first couple of turns (otherwise that strategy cannot work on maps where you meet other empires very soon).

There are (currently) only two ways of providing the player with that: either make the necessary things available generally (for everyone who wants to pursue that strategy), or provide them by packing them into a species.

With the current means first option means that there has to be a lot of things available at game start for everyone (or easily achievable by everyone). Policies, techs, etc. And once we introduce other very specific strategies, which have their own requirements, these would have to be added to. I hope you can see where that is heading, and why that isn't a good idea.

Second option means packing all that into a species. I hope I have been able to sufficiently explain why that isn't a good idea either in my above posts.

Which leaves us with the need to introduce a mechanic that allows us to provide the player with the things they need to employ a certain very specific strategy/playstyle (like stealthy supply disconnected empires). The Origin mechanic is supposed to do exactly that.
It seems to me that this whole Origins idea is traits and policies with steps and more restricted.
No - it's supposed to remove things from species that shouldn't be species traits in the first place (but should be, more accurately, empire traits). Thereby also offering more variety of choices at game setup. And the way I envision it, it is definitely not supposed to be more restricting than your choice of a starting species.

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#10 Post by Krikkitone »

I think having an empire start with some "Origin" techs which give early access to policies/ships/buildings would be a good idea.

Have the "Origin" techs be later in the tech tree (and not "buyable/spyable" for anyone that doesn't have the prerequisites

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#11 Post by Ophiuchus »

Vezzra wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 3:25 pm With the current means first option means that there has to be a lot of things available at game start for everyone (or easily achievable by everyone). Policies, techs, etc. And once we introduce other very specific strategies, which have their own requirements, these would have to be added to.
I think the main idea here should be "easily achievable iff specialising". So it would be great if empire could grow into its role. The player should make significant choices along the way which removes options (or makes those options more expensive). There could be also a starting decision involved (e.g. choosing your first tech theme).

Building a standard Sly empire should be a valid option. Playing a hidden peaceful Egassem-only empire does not necessarily have to be a valid option. I think it would be good if there was a path for a standard empire to becoming a hidden distributed empire - at the moment that means acquiring some well-hidden species which is possible after spending 250RP for getting active detection and lighthouse. The balancing should allow a good-research species to go down that road (and i guess that is currently possible). Maybe what we need here is some more hidden colonising natives to give that option - if we also add some even stealthier natives the lighthouse builders would try to uncover species and maybe fail because stealth is still to high.

Story-wise I am not convinced - the origins concept weakens the background of the species. Also in balancing one needs to consider not only species, but species-origins combinations (so #species*#origins instead of #species).

We currently have no specific strategies besides hidden distributed empire stated. Also the tech reorganisation into themes would achieve something similar. Also AI is totally unprepared for any strong different starting position approach-we basically have playbooks. If you look at . I think the AI needs groundwork first, there is no pressing need currently, there are other features planned which help with the stated problem, the plethora of suggested specielised origins would make balancing/AI much harder, and even without that balancing is much harder. I think a generic discussion of choosable starting packs is premature.
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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#12 Post by Ophiuchus »

Vezzra wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 3:25 pm With the current means first option means that there has to be a lot of things available at game start for everyone (or easily achievable by everyone). Policies, techs, etc. And once we introduce other very specific strategies, which have their own requirements, these would have to be added to.
I think the main idea here should be "easily achievable iff specialising". So it would be great if empire could grow into its role. The player should make significant choices along the way which removes options (or makes those options more expensive). There could be also a starting decision involved (e.g. choosing your first tech theme).

Building a standard Sly empire should be a valid option. Playing a hidden peaceful Egassem-only empire does not necessarily have to be a valid option. I think it would be good if there was a path for a standard empire to becoming a hidden distributed empire - at the moment that means acquiring some well-hidden species which is possible after spending 250RP for getting active detection and lighthouse. The balancing should allow a good-research species to go down that road (and i guess that is currently possible). Maybe what we need here is some more hidden colonising natives to give that option - if we also add some even stealthier natives the lighthouse builders would try to uncover species and maybe fail because stealth is still to high.

Story-wise I am not convinced - the origins concept weakens the background of the species. Also in balancing one needs to consider not only species, but species-origins combinations (so #species*#origins instead of #species).

We currently have no specific strategies besides hidden distributed empire stated. Also the tech reorganisation into themes would achieve something similar. Also AI is totally unprepared for any strong different starting position approach-we basically have playbooks. If you look at . I think the AI needs groundwork first, there is no pressing need currently, there are other features planned which help with the stated problem, the plethora of suggested specielised origins would make balancing/AI much harder, and even without that balancing is much harder. I think a generic discussion of choosable starting packs is premature.
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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#13 Post by wobbly »

I'm skeptical. I'd rather see this done through the early tech picks. Currently I think the early tech tree is too much: Physical brain an almost automatic pick then a choice between Organic/Robotic ships. I'd rather see the early tech tree balanced better around interesting choices then a new mechanic to be balanced.

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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#14 Post by Oberlus »

Ophiuchus wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 6:21 am Building a standard Sly empire should be a valid option. Playing a hidden peaceful Egassem-only empire does not necessarily have to be a valid option.
Agree.
It could be seen as a challenge, but not as an strategy in equal conditions to others more "reasonable".
Ophiuchus wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 6:21 am I think it would be good if there was a path for a standard empire to becoming a hidden distributed empire - at the moment that means acquiring some well-hidden species which is possible after spending 250RP for getting active detection and lighthouse. The balancing should allow a good-research species to go down that road (and i guess that is currently possible). Maybe what we need here is some more hidden colonising natives to give that option - if we also add some even stealthier natives the lighthouse builders would try to uncover species and maybe fail because stealth is still to high.
Agree. Also rework of the stealth mechanics, so that it's not all-or-nothing. There is an old suggestion about levels of detection-vs-stealth (initially for ships, expandable to planets), so that the stealth empire can get some benefits when stealth is not enough to keep planets undetected, such as bonus to defense and troops. The idea being that not winning the research race for stealth vs detection is not a total waste, also end-game.

Ophiuchus wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 6:21 am I think the main idea here should be "easily achievable iff specialising". So it would be great if empire could grow into its role. The player should make significant choices along the way which removes options (or makes those options more expensive). There could be also a starting decision involved (e.g. choosing your first tech theme).
Yes.
Going along with this Origins idea and specialisation:
Along with starting species, choose between several research speciallisation strategies at game start:
- All tech themes equally priced (say 100%)
- First tech theme researched is cheaper (dunno, 66%?), rest a bit more expensive (125%).
- First and second Two tech themes cheaper (75% each), rest more expensive (150%).
Something like that. Plays well with themed tech tree but could be also adapted to current tech tree with categories/classes.

I agree to the rest of Ophiuchus comment.

For me it keeps being species traits and policies with steps: instead of picking it at game start and bound to the starting species, or during game and affecting the whole empire via policies, you get it at game start and affecting the whole empire.
wobbly wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 9:36 am I'm skeptical. I'd rather see this done through the early tech picks. Currently I think the early tech tree is too much: Physical brain an almost automatic pick then a choice between Organic/Robotic ships. I'd rather see the early tech tree balanced better around interesting choices then a new mechanic to be balanced.
Mostly.
The other picks are about what to do first or give priority, how to order the mix of pop/prod/res boosts with respect to combat techs, plus the necessary supply, detection, etc. scattered in the queue when they begin to be required. Also if you gonna get the asteroid armour path or the regular armour path.

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labgnome
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Re: Empire Types - "Origins"

#15 Post by labgnome »

A couple of thoughts:

Firstly, maybe certain traits, like stockpiling could be influenced by or outright moved to origins. This could allow the flexibility we are wanting with origins.

Secondly, we need to have an idea of how many strategies we want to support for Free Orion. I can see eleven possible general play styles.
  1. Wide builder: needs good/great industry and good/great supply, can afford bad stockpiling and bad population
  2. Wide conqueror: needs good/great attack troops and good/great supply, can afford bad stockpiling and bad population
  3. Wide influencer: needs good/great influence and good/great supply, can afford bad stockpiling and bad population
  4. Wide exterminator: needs good/great pilots and good/great supply, can afford bad stockpiling and bad population
  5. Distributed conqueror: needs good/great attack troops and good/great stockpiling, can afford bad supply and bad population
  6. Distributed influencer: needs good/great influence and good/great stockpiling, can afford bad supply and bad population
  7. Distributed hider: needs good/great stealth and good/great stockpiling, can afford bad supply and bad population
  8. Tall builder: needs good/great industry and good/great population, can afford bad stockpiling and bad supply
  9. Tall influencer: needs good/great influence and good/great population, can afford bad stockpiling and bad supply
  10. Tall hider: needs good/great stealth and good/great population, can afford bad stockpiling and bad supply
  11. Tall researcher: needs good/great research and good/great population, can afford bad stockpiling and bad supply
All of my contributions should be considered released under creative commons attribution share-alike license, CC-BY-SA 3.0 for use in, by and with the Free Orion project.

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