Ship Building HOI style

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

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Bastian-Bux
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#151 Post by Bastian-Bux » Tue Nov 23, 2004 2:38 pm

Thats not a compromise, as it totally destroys the idea of refinements.

The very heart of refinements IS, that an "old" weapon can be refined enough to at least be equal, but more often be better then an unrefined "newer" weapon.

The main reason behind this approach is the recognition of two ways people handle technology:

- newer is better. Always get the newest, most shiny stuff. Those people would replace their 4 Ghz cpu for a 4.1 Ghz, just for the 2% speed increase (but use an outdated and buggy OS). ;)

- streamlining is fun. Always get the max out of a given system. Those people tend to play a gentoo on a 233 Mhz system, patiently waiting the 24h the compilation needs. At the end they will be able to do the same work, having wasted not tons of dollar, but hundreds of working hours.

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#152 Post by Ranos » Tue Nov 23, 2004 4:42 pm

You misunderstood my system. Weapons would not be renamed every few levels. Refinements on an existing tech would unlock new techs. Refinements would be less expensive to research than new techs. Here is how the system would work:

Type----Base Name------Refinement------------------------New Tech----------------------------------------------New Tech
Beam---Laser------------>Mk2-->Mk3-->Mk4-->Mk5----->Hard Beam-->Mk2-->Mk3-->Mk4-->Mk5------->Phasor (New Tech)-->Mk2-->Mk3-->Mk4-->Mk5-->Disruptor Beam (New Tech)
Bolt-----Fusion Cannon--->Mk2-->Mk3-->Mk4-->Mk5-->Hellfire Cannon-->Mk2-->Mk3-->Mk4-->Mk5-->Plasma Cannon (New Tech)-->Mk2-->Mk3-->Mk4-->Mk5-->Megabolt Cannon (New Tech)
(Just a couple of weapons types to get an example)

In this way, refinements would be a requirement to reach new techs.

I don't know if you read the entire thread before posting or not, but if you didn't, I suggest going through it and see what utilae's idea was, what my original and revised ideas were and what Impaler's idea was.

What you suggest is Impaler's slightly modified idea from his original. You can also see my arguements against it in previous posts.

See what I think refinements should cost and how much space they should take up on ships etc.
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#153 Post by Kharagh » Tue Nov 23, 2004 4:49 pm

The very heart of refinements IS, that an "old" weapon can be refined enough to at least be equal, but more often be better then an unrefined "newer" weapon.
And that's ecaxlty how it would be in my system.
When you have Fusion Beam, you can refine your Fusion Beam up to level 4 whereas you can refine your Laser up to level 9. (As the Fusion Beam is a level 5 tech, it will be equal to the laser.

Both of your two ways are possilbe:

You can never refine any weapon if you want or you can keep refining your weapons an much as you like.

This was thought as a compromise and if you read the thread a little while back, you will realise, that it really is sort of a compromise between the ppl who want infinite refinements and those who want to use refinements only as a means to reach the next weapon technology.

Refinements will be there, but they will have some drawbacks.

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#154 Post by Kharagh » Tue Nov 23, 2004 5:01 pm

You misunderstood my system. Weapons would not be renamed every few levels. Refinements on an existing tech would unlock new techs. Refinements would be less expensive to research than new techs. Here is how the system would work:
You are right, I will take back the just renaming part :)

The key question is:

Can you still refine your Laser after refining it up to Mk5 (and unlocking the Hard Beam) or not?

From what you posted before, I think you are against refinements after MK5, right?
I don't know if you read the entire thread before posting or not, but if you didn't, I suggest going through it and see what utilae's idea was, what my original and revised ideas were and what Impaler's idea was.
I read the entire thread, but I did it all on one afternoon, together with some other threads, so forgive me if I don't remember everything correctly.

So I read all your arguments, but I am still in favour of refinements, as they add so much more fun and freedom of action to the game.

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#155 Post by Ranos » Tue Nov 23, 2004 5:26 pm

The reason for limiting refining is because of redundant weapons. This was stated mulitple times throughout the thread. A Laser and a Phasor are exactly the same, the Phasor just shoots further and does more damage. We have the weapon types categories, listed on page 8 or 9 I think. Throughout the game, there would be only one weapon from each category usable at a time. Basically, you have your first beam weapon, which would be the Laser, and you would always have only one beam weapon. The laser would be refined until the next beam weapon was available.

To answer your question, you would not be able to refine past Mk5.
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#156 Post by Kharagh » Tue Nov 23, 2004 5:44 pm

Throughout the game, there would be only one weapon from each category usable at a time. Basically, you have your first beam weapon, which would be the Laser, and you would always have only one beam weapon
That is exacty what I mean. I want more than 1 beam weapon at the same time.
Imagine you want to design 2 differrent ships, a close combat ship and a long range ship, both using beam weapons.
If you now also have 2 differrent beam weapons, one has litte damage, but no range dissipation, the other high damage but double range penalties.
Both are (after refining one of them to the level of the other) on the same level. Now which beam weapon would you take for which ship?

You see, those weapons are not redundant, because each of them has its niche, which makes it better suited for a specific task.

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#157 Post by Bastian-Bux » Tue Nov 23, 2004 8:36 pm

Ranos wrote:
A Laser and a Phasor are exactly the same,...
QED, you didn't understand refinment.

A laser and a phaser AINT the same. And NO, there AINT redundant weapons. Its the same as with shields: they might fullfill the same purpose (for weps doing dmg, for shields, avoiding dmg), but they are still different enough to be not logical results from each other.

An chair and a bed are both used to allow humans a comfortable position. And researching from a chair "might" lead to the development of a bed. Still refining chairs further and further won't end one day because we found the ultimate chair is a bed.

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#158 Post by utilae » Tue Nov 23, 2004 8:55 pm

Hmmmm Ranos and Kharagh your systems are exactly the same. I think the idea of refinements is taken away with both of these systems.

New Refinement Idea
==============
1)Each unique weapon category is a theory.
eg
Beam, Bolt, Wave, Missile, Torpedo, Bomb, etc

2)Each weapon theory has a number of weapons application techs within it, varying by there stats (sometimes there functions/abilities) and what mods they can 'learn' (when mods are learn't they are applied to the weapon only if the player chooses to do so in desiging a ship).
eg varying by stats
Beam
->Laser (Damage=5 Range=50 Damage loss=0)
->Phasor (Damage=10 Range=35 Damage loss=5% every 5 range)
->Plasma (Damage=20 Range=20 Damage loss=20% every 5 range)

eg varying by function/abilities
Missile
->Warhead (Flies to target and explodes)
->Drone (Flies to target, attaches to target and attacks enemy ships)
->Troop (Flies to target and carries troops who will board enemy ship)

3)Each weapon application tech can be refined forever, the only limit being research cost, and the cost of including it in your ship.

4)Most theories and applications (as I describe them here) will be available early game (45%). Some available mid game (35%). And few available late game (20%).

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#159 Post by Ranos » Wed Nov 24, 2004 2:01 am

@ Kharagh

What you missed was that every beam weapon is basically the same. Beam weapons are energy weapons that fire over a greater distance. Bolt weapons are energy weapons that fire over a shorter distance but do more damage than beam weapons. Wave weapons are energy weapons that effect a large area, do lots of damage, but have a long recharge time. Each individual weapon in a delivery type is basically the same with a few variations.

@ Bastian

Did you read earlier posts in the thread? A Laser is a beam that shoots out of your ship. The color is read. A Phasor is a beam that shoots out of your ship. The color is orange. The only difference between the two is that the phasor does more damage and has a greater range. They are exactly the same only Phasors are more advanced. Why have them be completely separate of eachother?

@ utilae

Wait a second. We debated over two or three pages about how weapons would be different. You used the above arguement that each weapon in a delivery type is identical and should therefore not be a different weapon but a refinement of a general beam weapon. I had been arguing that each weapon should be an individual tech on its own. Finally, I came up with the idea that I posted above (I came up with it way back on page 7 second to last post) and you seemed to like it. Now, all of a sudden, after this post had been dead for a month, I'm arguing your point using my revised idea and you are suggesting the point that I had been making originally. Why the sudden turn around?

Next point. Weapons should not be upgradable forever. This makes it completely pointless to research a new weapon. Refinements should cost less than a new weapon and should just be for improving existing weapons until the next new weapon becomes available. If I can refine Lasers so they are useful at the very end of the game, why would I want to research Phasors? Unless every weapon is so unique and different from every other weapon, then there is no point in having multiple weapons.

Finally, from what you say, you would be able to research Phasors and Lasers at the same time. Is this correct or did I misunderstand #4? If I misunderstood, then please explain better. If I didn't misunderstand, then no way.

Beam, Bolt, Missile, Bomb, Fighter and Projectile should all be available at the start of the game as theories. Actual applications should become available as technology advances. You start the game with Laser (Beam), Mass Driver (Projectile), Missile type 1, Bomb type 1 and Fighter type 1. One of the first new weapon applications you can research is some type of Bolt weapon. Different apps for different theories would become available and the reamaining theories would become available at various points in the game.

The main thing that should be followed is that new weapons should make old weapons obsolete. Doing this any other way would completely ruin immersion in the game, at least IMHO.
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#160 Post by utilae » Wed Nov 24, 2004 3:02 am

Ranos wrote: @ utilae
Wait a second. We debated over two or three pages about how weapons would be different. You used the above arguement that each weapon in a delivery type is identical and should therefore not be a different weapon but a refinement of a general beam weapon. I had been arguing that each weapon should be an individual tech on its own. Finally, I came up with the idea that I posted above (I came up with it way back on page 7 second to last post) and you seemed to like it. Now, all of a sudden, after this post had been dead for a month, I'm arguing your point using my revised idea and you are suggesting the point that I had been making originally. Why the sudden turn around?
I still support my original view that weapons should be completely different (different weapon theory categories, like Wave, Laser achieve this). I have accepted that varying weapon by there stats (but keeping the total stats balanced) is ok. Some people might want short range weapons, while others may want long range. Of course there is still the option to make stat changes a mod eg 'long range' for a weapon.

As for the idea that you and I agreed on, I still support it. But I still do not like how refinements lead to the next application and the refinements stop. See, with your system, refinements are no longer a choice, they are compulsary and lead to applications, so in a sense they do not really act like refinements.

I am hoping for a better system. So I have posted a newer idea, hoping to stimulate discussion that will lead to the best system.
Ranos wrote: Next point. Weapons should not be upgradable forever. This makes it completely pointless to research a new weapon. Refinements should cost less than a new weapon and should just be for improving existing weapons until the next new weapon becomes available.
If the weapons are different enough then one weapon will not replace another, but will simply be another choice among the weapons you have researched.
Ranos wrote: If I can refine Lasers so they are useful at the very end of the game, why would I want to research Phasors? Unless every weapon is so unique and different from every other weapon, then there is no point in having multiple weapons.
Because if the weapon is not different by style, then it is different by stats at the very least and balanced at the same level (it's a case of would you take a weapon that is high damage, but short range or low damage but long range).
Ranos wrote: Finally, from what you say, you would be able to research Phasors and Lasers at the same time. Is this correct or did I misunderstand #4? If I misunderstood, then please explain better. If I didn't misunderstand, then no way.
You mean #2 (#4 regards when apps become available). You would not be able to research lasers and phasors at the same time since phasors would be available at level 5 and lasers at level 1 (example numbers). You could (I guess) refine lasers while trying to reserach phasors (I'm not sure if the HOI system allows that).
Ranos wrote: Beam, Bolt, Missile, Bomb, Fighter and Projectile should all be available at the start of the game as theories.
Agree.
Ranos wrote: Actual applications should become available as technology advances. You start the game with Laser (Beam), Mass Driver (Projectile), Missile type 1, Bomb type 1 and Fighter type 1. One of the first new weapon applications you can research is some type of Bolt weapon. Different apps for different theories would become available and the reamaining theories would become available at various points in the game.
I agree that weapon apps should become available at various points in the game, though each weapon should not simply be an upgrade of the lower tech weapon in the same theory category.

I think that if laser is available at level 1 and phasor at level 5, then comparing a level 5 laser and level 5 phasor, they should be equal. Only the stats are moved around a bit (eg phasor does more damage then laser, but has less range) or even have a completely different weapon style (eg warhead missiles vs missiles that deploy a droid on an ememy ship).

Since a phasor would be availble at level 5, then it should start at level 5 and not 1, so that if you refined laser to level 5 and then got to phasor, then they would both be at the same level, thus you could refine further from an almost equal starting point.
Ranos wrote: The main thing that should be followed is that new weapons should make old weapons obsolete. Doing this any other way would completely ruin immersion in the game, at least IMHO.

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#161 Post by Ranos » Wed Nov 24, 2004 3:53 am

@ utilae

The way you talk about refinements makes multiple weapons useless. Your example:

Laser: Available at level 1. At level 50, it would do 500 damage with a range of 100.
Phasor: Available at level 5. At level 50, it would do 400 damage with a range of 125.
Graviton Beam: Available at level 10. At level 50, it would do 600 damage with a range of 83.
Plasma Cannon: Avalable at level 15. At level 50, it would do 1000 damage with a range of 50.
Disruptor Cannon: Available at level 20. At level 50, it would do 100 damage with a range of 500.
Etc.
Etc.
Stellar Converter: Available at Level 50. Does 5000 damage with a range of 10.

All of these are balanced with damage and range but there is no differnace. With the Disruptor Cannon, you can sit back and slowly kill something. With the Stellar Converter, you get in close and blow the ship out of space.

What's the point? Make a single weapon. Make a Long Range mod that increases range and decreases damage. Make a Heavy Damage mod that increases damage but decreases range. Same effect only simpler.

The only way weapons can be different is with different mods or characteristics. The Ion Cannon damages the electrical system allowing a ship to be disasabled instead of destroyed. Death Ray does the same thing only more effectively, but comes at a war crimes cost. Nannite cannon does no damage to shields but ignores armor and does damage directly to the internals of a ship.

Differences like those allow for a good diversity of weapons. If you make Two weapons that only have a difference in range and damge, then there is no point.

Here is why I want refinements to work the way I suggested. It seems really stupid to be able to upgrade a weapon forever. Completely ridiculous IMO. But you should be able to use similar weapons throughout the game because there will always be those niches to be filled. So you start the game and get to a point where you develope an EMP Cannon. That is useable for a while but eventually you develope Ion Cannon which is better than the EMP Cannon.

You want lots of different weapons that can be refined forever. I want lots of different weapons that can be refined but lead to a new weapon at some point.

What we should do is make a list of weapons and list the characteristics of the weapon. If the weapon is unique, then it is a type of weapon. If it is the same as another weapon but with more damage/less range, then we make it an eventual upgrade of the weapon it is identical to. The new weapon should not just be a refinement that renames the weapon but it should be a new tech and more expensive than the regular refinements.

This solves both problems.
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#162 Post by utilae » Wed Nov 24, 2004 7:16 am

Ranos wrote: The way you talk about refinements makes multiple weapons useless. Your example:
Laser: Available at level 1. At level 50, it would do 500 damage with a range of 100.
Phasor: Available at level 5. At level 50, it would do 400 damage with a range of 125.
Graviton Beam: Available at level 10. At level 50, it would do 600 damage with a range of 83.
Plasma Cannon: Avalable at level 15. At level 50, it would do 1000 damage with a range of 50.
Disruptor Cannon: Available at level 20. At level 50, it would do 100 damage with a range of 500.
Etc.
Etc.
Stellar Converter: Available at Level 50. Does 5000 damage with a range of 10.

All of these are balanced with damage and range but there is no differnace. With the Disruptor Cannon, you can sit back and slowly kill something. With the Stellar Converter, you get in close and blow the ship out of space.
Yes, you are right, although I wasn't planning to have quite that many.
Ranos wrote: What's the point? Make a single weapon. Make a Long Range mod that increases range and decreases damage. Make a Heavy Damage mod that increases damage but decreases range. Same effect only simpler.
I was thinking that. Though not a mod that both increases damage and decreases range, although that could work.
Ranos wrote: Differences like those allow for a good diversity of weapons. If you make Two weapons that only have a difference in range and damge, then there is no point.
I was thinking that within the weapon theory you could have a weapon with average stats, one with range increased (other stats decreased), one with damage increased (other stats decreased), one with stat3 increased (other stats decreased), one with stat4 increased (other stats decreased), etc.
Ranos wrote: Here is why I want refinements to work the way I suggested. It seems really stupid to be able to upgrade a weapon forever. Completely ridiculous IMO. But you should be able to use similar weapons throughout the game because there will always be those niches to be filled. So you start the game and get to a point where you develope an EMP Cannon. That is useable for a while but eventually you develope Ion Cannon which is better than the EMP Cannon.
But if the Ion Cannon is better than the EMP Cannon, then isn't the Ion Cannon just a refinement of the EMP cannon. My problem is that you treat Ion Cannon as a completlely new weapon when it is just a refinement of EMP Cannon.
Ranos wrote: You want lots of different weapons that can be refined forever. I want lots of different weapons that can be refined but lead to a new weapon at some point.
It's alright if the refinements lead to a new weapon (as long as the new weapon IS different), but the weapons being refined that lead to the new weapon should still be able to be refined further (the new weapon is different right, not just a replacement/refinement).
Ranos wrote: What we should do is make a list of weapons and list the characteristics of the weapon. If the weapon is unique, then it is a type of weapon. If it is the same as another weapon but with more damage/less range, then we make it an eventual upgrade of the weapon it is identical to. The new weapon should not just be a refinement that renames the weapon but it should be a new tech and more expensive than the regular refinements.

This solves both problems.
Ah I know what we can do. You have a beam weapon: Laser. You can refine it etc. When you add laser to your ship you can 'tweak' the laser.
So the lasers base stats are:
Damage=10, Range=50, etc

You could 'tweak' the laser by adjusting the stats. You could put damage up for example, but you would have to decrease range, because the total stats must not change.

This 'tweak' thing you can do to a weapon does not have to be done, as base stats will be used by default. But if players want there 'short range, high damage' weapon then they can have it by 'tweaking' the weapon.

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#163 Post by Bastian-Bux » Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:17 am

Ranos, I did read your posts, and you still don'zt understand. I'll try it very slowly now:

YES, the job of all BEAM weapons is to deal damage via a pretty colorfull Beam. Thats what their name comes from.
But the technobabble behind this beam varies from weapon to weapon. Or game mechanical: they'll have different parent theories. All beam weapons will need beam focussing as one parent theory (or something like that), but then there is a second or even third one, which differs. So beam-weapons are half-brothers/sisters to each other.

And no, they aint redundant. While it might be possible with all of them to achieve the same dps (damage per second), they will need different levels of refinement to do so. AND, they will have different "sister applications". While the laser theory might wield lotsa morale boosting applications as well (CDs, holographics and so on), the graviton theory might on day lead to contra grav...

You are assuming that every race will at some point refine all weapons to lvl 50, making them redundant. but thats just not true.

A very militaristic (and uncurious) race might use the very first beam weapon they stumble about and refine it into a real bad weapon. Its very possible that they'll dismiss any other upcoming beam weapon because its worse then their highly refined weapon.

Another race that has less use for a weapon early on might dismiss weapon research very long, and only start refining a mid game weapon.

A third race might like diversity, refining most beam weapons to a usefull point, till they find a newer, "better" one.

In Star Trek you see such things fairly often. Especially Voyager. How often did they meet a race which weapons are much less sophisticated, but refined to such a powerfull or specialised status that they prove to be a problem for the "high tech" Voyager?

And I didn't add a last bit of information: application requirements. Maybe to refine an application past a specific level you gotta research another specific apllication first?

"No captain, I can't increase the focussing of our laser further. Our optical systems ain't up to that yet. I heard the Hraa have some better, but we would have to trade for them first, and afterwards I might be able to adapt them".

Or maybe you need just enough experience in the parent theories, meaning a certain amount of apllications? Like to refine the graviton beam past lvl 30 you gotta first develop 5 graviton based applications?

This way strategies would be necessary. Do I choose the laser early on and refine it without restrictions, but be stuck with it? Or do I wait for graviton beam. But then I have to invest more research in the graviton area. Do i need that applications?

OK, again: theory, application and refinement are 3 DIFFERENT research areas. Refinement ISN'T a sublevel of application.
But: all three are interwoven with requirements. Usually a refinement is dependend on an application is dependend on a theory. But some theories might need a certain application to be refined to a certain degree (like viral microbiology needing microscopes of sufficent quality).

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#164 Post by Kharagh » Wed Nov 24, 2004 10:05 am

I wholly agree with Utilae and Bastian-Bux

There should be a number of weapons in each category, each with different stats, for example range, damage, range dissipation, enveloping, armor piercing,... .
Those weapons are not redundand, as I said before, but fill their specific niche.

A high number of weapons adds to the game immersion, I think. Look at startrek for example. All factions habe similar weapons, but with slight differences. Why should every race research exactly the same weapons in exactly the same order? That would be kind of boring IMHO.

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#165 Post by Geoff the Medio » Wed Nov 24, 2004 10:12 am

Bastian-Bux wrote:While it might be possible with all of them to achieve the same dps (damage per second), they will need different levels of refinement to do so. AND, they will have different "sister applications".
Also, just because there are two straight line, effectively instant one-target hit weapons, doesn't meant doesn't mean they are equally effective against things they hit. If "muon beams" are better against "tachyon shields" and "lasers" are better against "deflector shields", they are strategically different, despite both being "beam weapons".

Perhaps it would be better to have each "shape" of weapon have consistent types of damage properties (aide from mods, perhaps)... ie. lasers and muon beams do the same ratio of damage to deflector / tachyon shields (though one weapon could do more damage to both shields than the other weapon does), but this doesn't necessarily have to be the case.

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