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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Impaler
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#31 Post by Impaler »

I understand it a little bit better but I do have one point of contention. Refinements to a hull size should not reduce the number of turns but should increse the space (increase the ammount of items that can be put onto a ship) and maybe the ammount of armor mounted or something like that. Building something fast is not in the design of the thing itself but in the way things in general are built.
As I stated this would require a complete REDESIGNING of every ship using that Hull to "Add" more items to it to fill that now avalible space. This is pointless tedium that should be eliminated.

The "building it faster" is what the Refinment dose because thats a good simple and stratiforward bonus that the player can use without any tedius micro-managment. If it helps you think of refinment as "learning to build it faster" which is a legitimate area of improvment.
1) Improving the Components/Devices. This is a definate but it should not be a technology to be researched. The MOO2 way is exactly how it should be done. You researched the basic weapon and over time, improvements were made on it. This was far better than the MOO3 way of having to research 2 miniturization techs along with autofire, armor piercing, etc.
Its already desisde (because its a basic part of the HOI system) that they player explicity chooses to reserch "refinments" of specific aplied devices. That said I think it would be nice if you get "bonus" refinment levels based on some other "root" tec level advancment. For example I refined Laser to level 3 and my "Energy" theory is 2 above the requirments for laser so my lasers are at level 5.

Also the miniturization of components will again lead to the nessesity to redesign and refit everything to get the advantage. Without miniturization you can skip the redesign and just bring your ships in for a refit that brings up all the components to your current max levels. Its functionaly equivilent in battle to have lasers with twice the rate of fire as to have twice as many lasers with half the size. We just save the player a ton of time and hastle this way.
Look at the history of the machine gun. It started out big and clunky, had to be carried by two people and set on a tripod to be fired. Now you can hold one and fire it one handed. On the reverse, cannons started out fairly small and as time went on, we came up with ways of making it bigger meaning it could fire farther and do more damage.
Thats a realism argument and is thus of no relavence. That said its a very poor one as well because you seem to be comparing a Uzey to a Brownin Machine gun, the Uzey is an extreamly advanced sub-machine gun. For 2 guns of the same size/mass the modern one will have greater accuracy, rate of fire, damage ect ect. The invention of new gun tecnology improves all the guns but the basic catagories "pistol" "rifle" "Machine Gun" still continue to exist at very much the same size and mass. If some new tec comes along to alow a bigger gun it dosent eliminate the small ones either. All these sizes would simply be abstracted as "weapon mounts" like "Point defence" or "Super Heavy". In reality this will greatly reduce not incresse the number of tecnologies in the game.
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guiguibaah
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MAchine guns

#32 Post by guiguibaah »

- Well, actually he did have a point. The old machine guns in WWI that were very bulky to use - served to mow down slowly advancing troops. Today we have computer-guided A10 Warthog cannons shooting 30mm U-58 bullets that can reduce tanks to smithereens.

But I do agree on the miniturization aspect. Having the lazers auto-upgrade (Lasers level 5) is much better than having to pull all your ships aside to refit them with that extra 5% space you now have. The end result is you put in more lasers anyway.

What would be interesting is this -> You can easily upgrade your ships weapons, systems, guidances, etc... So long they stay in the same class. If you want to take advantage of that new "fusion cannon", well you need to start from scratch. This would make keeping some of the older (but upgraded) ships a viable strategic option.
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Geoff the Medio
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Re: MAchine guns

#33 Post by Geoff the Medio »

guiguibaah wrote:Having the lazers auto-upgrade (Lasers level 5) is much better than having to pull all your ships aside to refit them with that extra 5% space you now have. The end result is you put in more lasers anyway.
The way you worded that is a bit vague, but I think you're talking about something slightly different. It sounds like you're talking about is the issue of whether ships upgrade in the field without having to return to a shipyard or somesuch for the upgraade to happen.

This is a completely separate issue from whether or not ship designs include version numbers for their components and whether newer versions of components can be reduced in size, mandating the creation of whole new ship designs for upgrade purposes.

I'm personally not very keen on ships automagically getting growing new components or getting new versions of their components while away from shipyards, unless they are bio-hulled ships.

Impaler
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#34 Post by Impaler »

Agreed Geoff, you need to take the ship back to base and you can either "Refit" the ship which keeps the design identical but bumps up all the components to the current refinment levels you possess, this is relativly cheap. Or you can "Overhaul" the ship to a design of the same Hull size but with some new weapon or combination of weapons, this is considerably more expensive.

I find that 90% of the time in Moo2 when I am upgrading a ship I am doing what would be considered a "refit" here, aka I am adding more lasers/armor to fill that space that miniturization has given me. I dont change the ships overall design of function because I will still be needing a ship that fills that role in my fleet (say long range Missle ship, Planet Bombing ship ect ect).

With refits I only need to make a new design when I am realy introducing a new and unique ship and all refits will take less micro-managment to perform. Something like telling a ship to "Go to the nearest shipyard and Refit yourself then come back and merge back into the fleet".
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#35 Post by drek »

As I stated this would require a complete REDESIGNING of every ship using that Hull to "Add" more items to it to fill that now avalible space. This is pointless tedium that should be eliminated.

The "building it faster" is what the Refinment dose because thats a good simple and stratiforward bonus that the player can use without any tedius micro-managment. If it helps you think of refinment as "learning to build it faster" which is a legitimate area of improvment.
Good thinking. I agree.

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#36 Post by Impaler »

On a further note one of the advantages of Biohulls could be free in the field upgrading of the ships components (I am asuming these are Biological components). Late game BioHulls could do complet Overhauls in the field (perhaps the ship cocoons itself and metemposis).

Lastly if would be a relativly simple matter to alow a game set up option for "Auto Refiting" to give everyone this ability.
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Geoff the Medio
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#37 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Impaler wrote:On a further note one of the advantages of Biohulls could be free in the field upgrading of the ships components (I am asuming these are Biological components).
I wish I'd said that.

Oh wait, I did! :wink:
Geoff the Medio wrote:I'm personally not very keen on ships automagically getting growing new components or getting new versions of their components while away from shipyards, unless they are bio-hulled ships.

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#38 Post by Ranos »

I really am starting to hate the phrase "Realism argument" and "no relevense to the game." The message that I know I get when I read that is, "You are a complete moron for even brining that up so I'm not really even going to acnowledge that it is a good idea." Everyone who uses the above phrases whether separately or combined should try saying that in a different way. For example: "We thought of doing that but because we are trying to address certain gameplay issues, we ruled against it," and then tell them what the issue was and what is being done to resolve it.

No one likes to feel stupid and that is exactly what those phrases say, just worded differently.
Impaler wrote:That said its a very poor one as well because you seem to be comparing a Uzey to a Brownin Machine gun, the Uzey is an extreamly advanced sub-machine gun. For 2 guns of the same size/mass the modern one will have greater accuracy, rate of fire, damage ect ect. The invention of new gun tecnology improves all the guns but the basic catagories "pistol" "rifle" "Machine Gun" still continue to exist at very much the same size and mass.
I also feel the need to also take offense at the "very poor one" phrase as well. You are saying that there is a difference between pistols, rifles and machine guns and then they are totally and completely unrelated to eachother. I'll go way back to when the first "gun" was made. It was big and weighed alot. It was muzzle loaded. It was carried around along with a stand. When it needed to be used, the stand was put down, the gun was put on the stand and then the gun was fired. Lets move along to muzzle loading weapons 300 years ago. They were around the same size as our rifles are today, a little bigger probably. Still muzzle loaded but much smaller than the first gun. Around this time, someone was able to make a smaller, hand held version of these guns. It got called the pistol. The pistol is not a new technology, merely an offshoot of the bigger muxxle loader technology. This is called miniaturization. Taking big things and making them small.

Now, if I need to I will go through the developement of rifling, the minigun, the machine gun, etc. if I have to. The original gun was just a miniature version of a cannon. So every bit of chemichal propelled weaponry we have today is an offshoot of the very first cannon.

Your basic categories arguement there is irrelavant. A single fire pistol is the refinement of the original pistol. A pistol sized sub-machine gun is the refinement and miniaturization of the original machine gun technology. A machine gun is still a machine gun no matter if it is mounted on an armored vehicle or held in a single hand.


That said, if weapons do more damage and/or have a faster ROF, then I think that would work too. Being able to refit ships is something I miss dearly in MOO3 and would love to see it implemented in FO. I am assuming refitting would work similarly to the way it worked in MOO2 where the ship gets put into the build queue (or the shipyard queue as I would like to see).
Impaler wrote:As I stated this would require a complete REDESIGNING of every ship using that Hull to "Add" more items to it to fill that now avalible space. This is pointless tedium that should be eliminated.
As I said just because you are able to make the weapon smaller doesn't mean that you need to redesign it. If you are always redesigning new ships whenever you get a new technology, then you will have a new ship design every 3 or 4 turns. Let me throw it back at you and ask if you will send every ship you have to get "refitted" everytime a refinement tech is discovered? If so, then that is also "pointless tedium" and should be eliminated. If you did send your ships to get refitted every time something new happened, you would be constantly sending your ships in and spending a countless ammount of money in the process. By late game, you would get all of your ships refitted with Refinement 1 and then Refinement 2 would be completed anbd you would have to send them in all over again.

We throw micromanagement around and use it all the time, myself included. From what I understand of the way the tech tree will work, that sounds like a lot of micromanagement to me. Civ3 is easy. Click on a tech that just became available to you, or click on one at the end of the age and all the prerequisit techs will be developed. MOO3 is easy. Set the sliders and make sure money is going into research and the techs will be discovered automatically.

How many categories of technology will there be? How many subcategories? 20 Categories that you must select what techs in each you wish to research? 30% of those having "refinements" that you have to research?

Well I'll admit that most of this post turned into a rant on my part, but everybody loves to use terms and say the equivelant of "That is stupid" while somebody else is looking at their idea and saying the same exact thing.

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#39 Post by Impaler »

I really am starting to hate the phrase "Realism argument" and "no relevense to the game." The message that I know I get when I read that is, "You are a complete moron for even brining that up so I'm not really even going to acnowledge that it is a good idea." Everyone who uses the above phrases whether separately or combined should try saying that in a different way. For example: "We thought of doing that but because we are trying to address certain gameplay issues, we ruled against it," and then tell them what the issue was and what is being done to resolve it.

No one likes to feel stupid and that is exactly what those phrases say, just worded differently.
Well you got me their, that is esentialy what we mean around here and frankly its true realism arguments are stupid. Trust me I have made many myself and seen them rightly shoot down by others on these boards. I try to be diplomatic when making argument and so far I think I have dont a good job at not offending people despite vigorous arguments.

Miniturization in Moo2 was a noble but shortsighted atempt to make low tec weapons usefull throughout the game but their are vastly better ways to achive the same ends that dont force the player to tediously redesign.

On the isshue of having to return to port to, it might be desirable to make everything auto-refit as I pointed out above, its a debatable isshue. But I dont see how you can claim this as a weakness of the proposal when Moo2 requires adsactly the same thing for the player to take advantage of Miniturization. That and theirs no means to do it automaticaly. Further more because Moo2 miniturization is automated and based on a % reductin its nearly impossible to predict when your laser are now small enough that you can fit an extra one onto a particular Hull. Atleast under this system the player definatly knows when refiting is possible and ships can easily be taged as "out of date by 3 levels" to help you know.
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Ranos
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#40 Post by Ranos »

It was only tedious if you tried to make and refit a new ship every time a new tech came along. It doesn't matter what game you play, FO included when its finished, there will always be a new tech getting developed every few turns. It is up to the player to decide what to do. Redesign and refit with every new tech or wait a level or two and then do the redesigning and refitting. It doesn't matter if you use miniaturization or not, that will always be an issue. I grant that miniaturization will make it more of an issue but its an issue either way.

On realism, you say it's stupid and then you say that you've made those arguements yourself. If so many people are making the arguement, it can't be that stupid. It comes up so much because we live in a real world. It doesn't matter if you made a big sign that showed up whenever someone entered the forum, people would still point out realism issues. The real reason why the realism arguments don't work, is because in some cases when it comes to programming and game mechanics, realism works and is manageable. In other cases, it wouldn't work well in the game or it would be extremely difficult to program.

As I said, if the dev team and anyone else who talks against realism in some places would just say that it wouldn't work well in the game or that it had been decided against or something, it would sound a whole lot better.

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#41 Post by drek »

On a further note one of the advantages of Biohulls could be free in the field upgrading of the ships components (I am asuming these are Biological components).
That's a huge advantage for biohulls, not in terms of gameplay, but from lack of UI frustration. We can assume that the biohull would have some disadvantages to make up for this advantage....Does this mean that a very bored person who has the time to dutifully refit his metal or rock hull ships will have the upper hand?

We don't need to have refits. It's a case of realism butting heads with gameplay. RTSes generally don't force you to move your units back to base to gain researched refinements, and players don't seem to notice/care.

I'd rather say that when a a refinement is researched it's applied to a master template for the ship part. It would make the database more compact as well (for saved games) since we'd probably only have to store hitpoints, a design ID, and a location for ships (instead of a complete layout of it's parts and variables for each part).

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#42 Post by MisterMerf »

drek wrote:I'd rather say that when a a refinement is researched it's applied to a master template for the ship part. It would make the database more compact as well (for saved games) since we'd probably only have to store hitpoints, a design ID, and a location for ships (instead of a complete layout of it's parts and variables for each part).
Now that is a power argument to me. It not only saves the programmers trouble, but it ends up saving the player trouble above and beyond the tedium of refitting.

That said, the added depth of having fleets of obsolete ships wandering about the map is very attractive to me. And, dare I say it, very worthy of a space opera =] Any fans of Endger's Game out there? My argument in favor of this is pure romanticism.

Since I have a feeling this has been discussed, could someone post a recap of arguments for/against? Does retrofitting slow the pace of the game too much? Does auto-upgrading homogenize the experience too much?

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#43 Post by MisterMerf »

Ranos wrote:All hull sizes should have a preset pp/turn that increase as the hull gets bigger. Hull 1 takes 5 turns, hull 2 takes 8, hull three takes 12 and on up to the biggest size. This can only be reduced by refining the building techniques. This is done either by having to research improvements to shipyards (not to be able to build bigger hulls but to build all hulls faster) or by having specific building technique refinement techs.
Just in case this argument is still floating out there, let me say this:

1. If you do this, then all such tech advances will need to be guaranteed to be available to all players. Such technology would be too important to chance missing it. Doing this takes some flavor out of the game for no good reason, to my mind. Much better to have individual hull designs receive upgrades and let them be non-guaranteed. This way some players will favor different hulls and we get a more interesting game experience very cheaply.

2. Players who have one additional upgrade in this field over their neighbors may wield far too massive an advantage. Having manufacturing upgrades to individual hulls mitigates this.

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#44 Post by noelte »

I'd rather say that when a a refinement is researched it's applied to a master template for the ship part. It would make the database more compact as well (for saved games) since we'd probably only have to store hitpoints, a design ID, and a location for ships (instead of a complete layout of it's parts and variables for each part).
Hmm, i disagree. I didn't like the civ mechanism of autoupdate older unit to newer ones. Did you? A ship should keep it's design until it is updated by a shipyard. And only the programming team should decide, what's worth the programming effort!?

Also for damage. Ok, nobody whats to make the player route damaged ships back to the next shipyard. But i like to see ships taken damage and need time to heal. Otherwise i would come for you with my single giant Doom Star and attack you fleet of destroyers every other turn.
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#45 Post by drek »

Hmm, i disagree. I didn't like the civ mechanism of autoupdate older unit to newer ones. Did you? A ship should keep it's design until it is updated by a shipyard. And only the programming team should decide, what's worth the programming effort!?
Sure, it should keep it's design. I'm talking refinements here.

I don't think it'll be any easier to code: I was thinking about the file sizes and load times of saved games, plus the cost of transferring the information over the network.

If a tech improves the Kill-o-Zap laser, adding +1 to it's attack, then I'm thinking all kill-o-zap lasers ought to just improve. But if you replace design's Kill-O-Zap laser with a brand new Death-and-Doom particle gun, the unit needs to refit to get the new weapon. Or perhaps obsolete units should just be scrapped.
Also for damage. Ok, nobody whats to make the player route damaged ships back to the next shipyard. But i like to see ships taken damage and need time to heal. Otherwise i would come for you with my single giant Doom Star and attack you fleet of destroyers every other turn.
Yeah, which is why I mentioned storing hitpoints for each vessel. Ships ought to auto-heal, but it should take a turn or three, and the ship should either have an engineering bay or be in friendly space for it to occur.

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