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Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2004 8:27 am
by LithiumMongoose
There was an old game called Pax Imperia that was MOO-like cept it had starlanes (with no off-roading) and nice RTS ship combat. Dunno if any of you remember it. Any rate in that game there was a choice with shields. There were two seperate lines you could climb in the tech tree: at the very top, the best "shield" was something like "5000 life and very fast in-combat life-regen", and the best "deflector" was something like "always on, nullifies 90% of all incoming damage". The key was you had your choice, and a ship could only mount one or the other, not both, even if you researched both. Either way it went on top of armor. I thought it was a cool idea having both and letting the user pick, might want to consider it.

Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2004 9:57 am
by Impaler
Ranos: That Shield Calculation is way way to complex in my opinion, your giving shields MORE stats then the Armor and you havent even included any kind of Recharge rate yet.
First off, you are approaching armor in a completely different way than I am. You use the thickness of the armor to detirmine how much damage is nullified. Then you use the resistance to modify the nullification, not the damage. That is your first problem. Resistance modifies the ammount of damage being done, not the ammount of nullification.
This realy sounds quite demeaning, I do not have a "problem" because I proposed a differnt math system that aproatches armor in a completly differnt manor then your proposal. Repeatedly stating how your system works as if it were a fact I don't understand is not going to get us anyware.
Here is how I approach those things: Armor stops all damage until it is gone. Nullification is a modifier to damage that erases X ammount of damage, essentially the same way you are looking at it but nullification is more of a deflection value where the armor is able to deflect X ammount of damage before receiving the damage. Resistance is a modifier to how much damage is done, instead of how effective nullification is.
I dont like this aproatch for Armor, it makes armor just second bar or Health for your ship with "Deflection" esentialy being the Armor's Armor. First you loss your shield HP, then you loss your Armor HP, then you loss your Internal HP. Thats quite boring in my opinion and redundant as well.
Death Ray: 200*1.25-5=245
Here we can see why its not possible to borrow numbers from one system and plug them into another system as differnt assumptions are made. When you multiply damage by 1.25 you cause the ship to recieve extra damage from this attack. If an unarmored ship has no armor then presumably it has no resistence modifier and we would multiply by 1.00 and the ship would paradoxicly take less damage. You would need to stick to Modifers below 100% in your system to avoid these situation.
The first problem I see with your system after reviewing it is there is no difference, except resistances, between the two armors. The secnod is that the thickness of the armor and the nullification it gives is the only stopping force between a weapon and the internals of a ship. With your system, an unshielded ship with armor thickness of 1 and 50 internal HP wouldn't stand a chance in a battle. With my system, thickness wouldn't matter except for incresing the number of armor HP and a ship with armor thickness of one (50 HP) and 50 internal HP would last twice as long as yours would. With your system, battles would be over in seconds and tactics would be meaningless. With my system, battles would last for minutes and tactics would be the key
This is a rather gauling strawman argument. I have already explained how craming the numbers from my example into your system is inapropriate both because of mechanics and balance. You then go on to say that a ship with 1 armor point under my system would be weaker then one with 50 under your system. Besides the fact that your ignoring cost and seem to have casualy given your ship 50 times more armor then its oponent you havent state what kind of weapon their being attacked by, if its a weapon doing 1 damage my ship would be involnorable and yours would die in 100 attacks (asuming no deflection on your ship because you havent stated it has any). Thus go on to make utterly unfounded assumptions on how long a ship will live which in highly dependent on the quantity of internal HP in both system.
With Impaler's system, damage would be done to shields with absolutely no modifiers (if I understood you correctly Impaler) and once the shields are gone, the math would be basically the same as mine when the armor is gone.

The difference is, the damage to the armor is modified by the shields, which reduces it causing the armor to last longer. With my system, a ship without shields can still last a while in combat. With Impaler's, it lasts for only a few hits and is gone
Additional Strawman arguments are being made here because I dont actualy HAVE a shield proposal, I only layed out a plan for Armor. I have consistently requested 2 things in shields though.

1 - Shields ignore Damage types so 100 Kinetic is the same as 100 Energy, Shields can still have across the board Resistence/Absorbtion value if desired they just dont care about damage types the way armor dose. This keeps things simpler for the player.
2 - Shields have different math behind how they operate so they arn't just the "outside armor layer" with regeneration. And to point out Rano's latest shield equations look much to complex, shields shouldnt have more then 2 or 3 critical numbers determining how they work.

Any speculation on how long something is going to last in combat is rediculus when we know for a fact that any of these systems can and will be balanced to give ships the desired combat endurance.

Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2004 10:22 am
by Impaler
Lithium Mongoose: I like this idea and have been thinking of something along these lines inwhich shields have several differnt types each with reduce damage to the underlying armor in some differnt, simple and unique way. As tecnology improves each shield family improves (X incresses).

Right off the top of my head

Flat subtract X amount of damage from each attack
Absorb all Damage to a Pool of X points
Reduce each attack by X%
Completly delfects X% of all attacks randomly
Completly negate the first X number of attacks each turn (in a real time system their would be a "cool down time" after an attack is stoped afterwhich the shield is esentialy down, better shields have shorter cooldown)
Negate the first X damage recived each turn (in real time the shield is continusly regenerating up to a total of X with regeneration being % based)

Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2004 2:06 pm
by Zpock
Impaler wrote:Actualy Zpocks math was mutch closer to correct but the numbers he chosse were incredibly biased, with Deflection values of 10% of the Raw Damage ofcorse their will be little effect thats esentialy Tin Foil which should ofcorse be blasted through by ANY kind of weapon regardless of Resistences.
Incredibly biased? You used similar numbers yourself in your later example! Then you just ignored the rest of my post in your reply, that was my whole point, that your nullification based armor will be used just to make small guns completely useless but have no major effect on large guns. All or nothing armor, either you bring a big enough gun or you can't damage him at all. Then also the bigger the gun you have the less you need to care about his armor. Armor will only be useful as long as the enemy does not bring a gun with more then 3 or so times more damage then your effective (after counting resistances) nullification. Even then the armor will only let the ship last 50% longer time. As you get closer to his maximal damage with your nullification, the armor becomes increasingly powerful until your completely invulnerable at 1:1 ratio.

This will be hard as hell to balance, since armor to weapon relationship will be very non-linear. There are just loads of factors to the ratio between how good armor you have to how big gun he has.

1: Relative Tech Level
2: Relative Ship Size (allowing bigger guns and thicker armor since more space)
3: Weapon mounts (or size of your weapon slot under Impaler ship design system)
4: the countering system (resistances vs damage types)

It will be very hard keeping guns within 1-3x as much damage as armor nullification on the other player ships in a game were all that is taken into account. It also makes medium ships worthless as they will not have the guns/armor thickness to penetrate the large ships armor or take their huge guns damage. But they don't get the small ships advantages either. Applies to medium guns too on large (or small) ships. With balance I mean that you make many strategies viable. Not just the strategy of trying to have the biggest gun.

But it does seem like this is actually what you (Impaler) want. Armor as a simple threshold and maybe shields taking the role of linear damage buffer. It may make more sense to you but have you considered how it will actually work out in game? Hit points are used in games becouse they make the game work. It's a simplification of what happens to units that get hit. Like, unit A can take 3hits from weapon X but 8hits from weapon Y. It's an abstracted system that represents everything that makes a unit either die or fight on. Like hits bouncing off, not hitting vital areas etc, multiple hits in the same (weakened) spot. So when a unit runs out of hitpoints and dies, that does not mean the unit has had all it armor stripped off. It means the unit has had it's luck run out and should be considered dead since it has taken so many hits that it can be assumed that the unit has received a critical hit or someting. You could instead try to simulate the whole thing with bouncing hits, not-vital hits, vital hits and (good luck) multiple hits in a weakened spot. The result will be exactly the same in the end, the unit will die out of an average of X hits. But since the hitpoints system is more consistent (it's always the same number of hits) it's a bit easier to control the battle since it's not so random. Some games, like warcraft, has damage that varies from 3-7 for example. So the hitpoint system gets a randomness to it this simple way as well if that is how you want it.

Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2004 4:11 pm
by Impaler
Then you just ignored the rest of my post in your reply, that was my whole point, that your nullification based armor will be used just to make small guns completely useless but have no major effect on large guns.
I am quite aware of that and I INTENDED it that way, I believe that creates the best tactical and strategicaly intersting battle. If you haven't played Moo1 please go and do so it works much as I have described yet is very balanced and battle is in my opinon much better then anything that came afterwards. As for ignoring the rest of your post, I only responded to the portion I wish to raise an issue with, I dont do a line by line quotation and comentary like many other people on these boards do.

Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2004 6:30 pm
by Ranos
LithiumMongoose wrote:There was an old game called Pax Imperia that was MOO-like cept it had starlanes (with no off-roading) and nice RTS ship combat. Dunno if any of you remember it. Any rate in that game there was a choice with shields. There were two seperate lines you could climb in the tech tree: at the very top, the best "shield" was something like "5000 life and very fast in-combat life-regen", and the best "deflector" was something like "always on, nullifies 90% of all incoming damage". The key was you had your choice, and a ship could only mount one or the other, not both, even if you researched both. Either way it went on top of armor. I thought it was a cool idea having both and letting the user pick, might want to consider it.
Great suggestion LM! :D That would be great for giving people a choice as to what they prefer.
Impaler wrote:Ranos: That Shield Calculation is way way to complex in my opinion, your giving shields MORE stats then the Armor and you havent even included any kind of Recharge rate yet.
What does it matter if the calculations for damage are more complex than armor? If you reduce shields to a single calculation, you have only single options as to how they work.
Impaler wrote:Lithium Mongoose: I like this idea and have been thinking of something along these lines inwhich shields have several differnt types each with reduce damage to the underlying armor in some differnt, simple and unique way. As tecnology improves each shield family improves (X incresses).

Right off the top of my head

1) Flat subtract X amount of damage from each attack
2) Absorb all Damage to a Pool of X points
3) Reduce each attack by X%
4) Completly delfects X% of all attacks randomly
5) Completly negate the first X number of attacks each turn (in a real time system their would be a "cool down time" after an attack is stoped afterwhich the shield is esentialy down, better shields have shorter cooldown)
6) Negate the first X damage recived each turn (in real time the shield is continusly regenerating up to a total of X with regeneration being % based)
I'm skipping ahead quickly to prove my point and then I'll come back. I added numbers to each system so I can address it easier. I'm also basing my responses to these off of your armor system, not mine.

1) With this system, lets say there is a weapon (the type of weapon doesn't matter, I'm trying to simplify my explainations so I won't be considering resistance) that does 100 damage. You have a shield that absorbs 30 and armor with thickness of 5. That means the internals take 65 damage and both armor and shields are basically useless. If all damage isn't stopped by one or the other, then there isn't a point to them. Ooooh, they knock off some damage before being done to the internals, big deal.

2) This is the only shield system that would have any viability with using your armor system, but it still has the same drawbacks as I stated in my last post.

3) This system is basically the same as the first but with a percentage instead of a set ammount. It has the same problems as the first.

4) Without having HP on shields, like it seems you don't want since it would add another calculation to shields, this is exactly the same as the previous system it just has a different name.

5) This system is the worst since it would take only some of the attacks coming at you and once it reached it's limit, it is useless until it "cools down." This is basically the same as number 2, it just has an instant recharge after a few seconds. It also sounds really stupid because it doesn't matter whether somebody attacks you with X number of attacks with a 1 damage weapon or a 100 damage weapon. It blocks the same number regardless of the damage.

6) This is better than the last one because it actually uses damage instead of attacks but the rest of it is the same.

Each of the above systems, by themselves, would result in one calculation unless shields always have hp that they can run out of. Then all but the second system would have two calculations. Adding resistances to shields puts in the third calculation because the leftover damage has to be converted back to it's raw form to allow for proper calculation with armor.

It all depends on which way you think shields would work.
Impaler wrote:This realy sounds quite demeaning, I do not have a "problem" because I proposed a differnt math system that aproatches armor in a completly differnt manor then your proposal. Repeatedly stating how your system works as if it were a fact I don't understand is not going to get us anyware.
I did not mean it to be demeaning and I apologize if that is how it came across. I meant it as a problem with the system, not with you personally. You have also repeatedly stated how your system works, you just say it in different ways the same as I do. We do that in hopes that the other person will better understand our system and like it.
Impaler wrote:I dont like this aproatch for Armor, it makes armor just second bar or Health for your ship with "Deflection" esentialy being the Armor's Armor. First you loss your shield HP, then you loss your Armor HP, then you loss your Internal HP. Thats quite boring in my opinion and redundant as well.
That is how armor has been in all other games but usually without the deflection. MOO3 is the only game I know of that uses deflection. You seem to want the ship to have a single health bar with shields and armor being nothing more than damage reducers. This makes, IMO, for quick, boring and tacticless battles. All that matters as, Zpock said, is who has the bigger guns and who fires first.

Losing shield, then armor and then internal HP is one way of doing it. The other is using shields as a damage reducer but with HP so they run out.
Impaler wrote:Here we can see why its not possible to borrow numbers from one system and plug them into another system as differnt assumptions are made. When you multiply damage by 1.25 you cause the ship to recieve extra damage from this attack. If an unarmored ship has no armor then presumably it has no resistence modifier and we would multiply by 1.00 and the ship would paradoxicly take less damage. You would need to stick to Modifers below 100% in your system to avoid these situation.
Using the same numbers you did changed how the weapon worked yes and I thought of that after I posted. I should have flipped them so your 1.25 became my 0.8. That would have worked correctly. If the ship has no armor then it has no deflection either and therefore recieves exactly the same ammount of damage. The only thing I can think of that would make you think it would take less damage would be the deflection value.

I would not need to stick with numbers below 100. In my system, if armor resistance is > 100, damage to the armor is increased. If resistance is < 100, damage is decreased. It is just the flip of your system where > 100 is a decrease and < 100 is an increase.
Impaler wrote:This is a rather gauling strawman argument. I have already explained how craming the numbers from my example into your system is inapropriate both because of mechanics and balance. You then go on to say that a ship with 1 armor point under my system would be weaker then one with 50 under your system. Besides the fact that your ignoring cost and seem to have casualy given your ship 50 times more armor then its oponent you havent state what kind of weapon their being attacked by, if its a weapon doing 1 damage my ship would be involnorable and yours would die in 100 attacks (asuming no deflection on your ship because you havent stated it has any).
Nowhere in that paragraph did I take numbers from your system and put them into mine. Where did you get that from? Your system would be weaker. I didn't put all of the details in there and I still don't want to have to put the details in there. Let me put make a detailed explaination so you understand me better:

Your system:

Armor thickness 1 (which reduces damage by 1), armor has 200% resistance to energy, internal hp 50, energy weapon does 80 damage. BOOM! your ship blows up.

My system:

Armor thickness 1 (which gives it 50 armor HP), armor has 50% resistance to energy, armor has deflection value of 1, internal hp 50, energy weapon does 80 damage. BOOM! my ship still has 11 Armor HP and all Internal HP left and can last for 2 more rounds.

Does that make better sense? If you need me to show the math thenI will. That is why yours would be weaker than mine. And if a weapon did only 1 or 2 damage, both of our ships would be able to last forever.
Impaler wrote:Thus go on to make utterly unfounded assumptions on how long a ship will live which in highly dependent on the quantity of internal HP in both system.
I clearly stated that both have 50 internal HP. Hopefully my above explaination will show you the difference.
Impaler wrote:Additional Strawman arguments are being made here because I dont actualy HAVE a shield proposal, I only layed out a plan for Armor.
Not a full blown calculations and mechanics and everything system but you did say this:
Impaler wrote:Health Points for Shields though could be interesting and we should explore that option more.

AND

What ever we use for Armor we should not use for Shields and visa versa, Ranos's calculations seem far more apropriate for shields in my opinion as they involve Health Points that can be depleted thus coresponding to good old "Shields are colapsing CapIn"
<snip>
From that, I made the assumption that you wanted shields to work in that manner. I also clearly stated "(If I understood you correctly Impaler)" and apparently I was wrong.

You also call my arguements "strawman arguements" which I am assuming means they have no substance.

You do go on in your next post to talk about different system of how shields would work and I have already reviewed that above.
Impaler wrote:And to point out Rano's latest shield equations look much to complex, shields shouldnt have more then 2 or 3 critical numbers determining how they work.
Give me a good reason why shields shouldn't have more complex equations. Is it just because you don't like it? Do you think it would be too confusing for the player? What is the reason?
Impaler wrote:Any speculation on how long something is going to last in combat is rediculus when we know for a fact that any of these systems can and will be balanced to give ships the desired combat endurance.
Granted, but with your system, armor thickness would need to be a massive number or weapons would have to do less than 100 damage or internal HP would need to be a huge number. People like things that seem well balanced and rational. I would find it ridiculous to have armor with thickness of 100 especially if I didn't know what that thickness was. Is it inches, feet, centimeters, meters or some other measurement? It would be boring for weapons to do no more than 50 damage mostly since that is a low number in most games I've played so it would seem like I was doing no damage. To have a huge ammount of HP for internals would be confusing. Why is the number so high? Are all internal system armor plated? I would see it as internal systems being stronger than armor.
Impaler wrote:I am quite aware of that and I INTENDED it that way, I believe that creates the best tactical and strategicaly intersting battle.
There would be no tactics or strategy involved. All that would matter would be who shoots first and who has the bigger guns. Unless you can explain your system in a vast ammount of detail including how much damage a ship could take and how damage would be dealt and any other details you can think of, then I won't be able to like your system.
Impaler wrote:If you haven't played Moo1 please go and do so it works much as I have described yet is very balanced and battle is in my opinon much better then anything that came afterwards.
MOO1 had a very simple battle setup with no tactics or strategy. It was at most 6 stacks of ships per side and maybe a planet. Whoever had the most ships with the biggest guns is who won. There was no manuevering of the fleets or anything. If that is the kind of battles you want, then go play MOO1. Most people here are looking for something more complex.
Impaler wrote:As for ignoring the rest of your post, I only responded to the portion I wish to raise an issue with, I dont do a line by line quotation and comentary like many other people on these boards do.
When you ignore a point somebody makes, it seems like you are sidestepping around an issue that you can't explain. I go line by line so people don't feel like I was ignoring them and I usually have a point to make about everything somebody says.

Posted: Mon Nov 01, 2004 2:01 am
by Impaler
This debate is getting quite stale, we are both convinced our ways the best and don't seem to be open to any kind of real debate here as you will not refrain from making Strawman arguments which is the act of building up a weak and distorted picture of your oponents position simply so you can knock it down.

For example you criticized Moo1 for haveing only 6 stacks of ships and a single planet and correctly point out that this is much simpler then what most of us want.

But thats a Strawman argument because you falsly imply that my armor calculation would somehow force us to use 6 stacks of ships and one planet in combat. I was obviously refering to the method of damage nulification to highlight a game that used this mechanism to good effect.

Most of your arguments are of this nature as their just ficticious senarios you have created that have no bearing how balance is likly to work in the game.

Contrary to what you say who fires first in Moo1 is far less desisive then Tec level or Numbers. And because larger weapons are less efficient at dealing raw damage smaller weapons do have their uses. Your opinion of Moo1 seems rather low so my pointing out that it is a excelent game worth emulating to a degree wont convince you. Zpock though seems to have a higher regard for the game as he refered to it favorably. Is their anyone else who will speak in defence of Moo1?

As for my saying the calculations should be simple. Yes, it is so the player can understand the games math without needing a calculator. The player when presented with the raw data for some ships in combat should imediatly be able to predict how the battle will play out. Keeping everything down to 2-3 critical numbers with very simple equations that combine them is nessary to do this. It also keeps us inline with Aquitaines "It should be no more mathematicaly complex then a board game" principle and the "A clever child should be able to understand and do the calcultions". These are principle I agree with and try to follow as should all of us.

Lastly a possible compromise idea.

Perhaps as LM sugjested for shields their could be more then one means of calculating Armor and several different types of Armor as well. We could even dig up that list of Armor types and use it to name them. Ranoses armor could be called "Ablative" style armor (seems apropriate because Armor points are lost as you take damage). Mine might be "Dense" as it dosen't ever come off the ship. Some of the other ideas proposed could serve as additional options. Each armor has some Resistence Scores and Cost and Mass along with some critical number thats the key to how strong/good the armor is. As your Tec improves that number goes up. When the player puts armor on a ship they select the type of armor and Thickness. Thickness comes in a several options (None, Tinfoil, Light, Medium, Heavy, Ultra Heavy, ect ect...) The thicker the armor the higher the critical protection number on the ship. By combining different shield and armor options the player has a lot of possible combinations.

Posted: Mon Nov 01, 2004 3:08 am
by Ranos
Impaler wrote:This debate is getting quite stale, we are both convinced our ways the best and don't seem to be open to any kind of real debate here as you will not refrain from making Strawman arguments which is the act of building up a weak and distorted picture of your oponents position simply so you can knock it down.
I do not keep using strawman arguements and your blowing off my arguement as being a strawman arguement so you don't need to answer it accomplishes nothing. I am not building up a weak and distorted picture of your position. I take what you say, and attempt to point out how it wouldn't work. I have distorted nothing. If something is wrong, then say so. If my math on how your system would work is wrong, then say so. But don't call everything I say a strawman arguement so that you can just ignore it.

I don't want to turn this thread into another huge arguement like the 'Shipbuilding HOI style' thread. Arguements should be kept to why we don't think the other persons system wouldn't work. All you have done is say why your system would work and called my arguements against your system 'strawman arguements.' I back everything I say up with reasons and I explain them as best I can. I would hope that you would do the same.
Impaler wrote:For example you criticized Moo1 for haveing only 6 stacks of ships and a single planet and correctly point out that this is much simpler then what most of us want.

But thats a Strawman argument because you falsly imply that my armor calculation would somehow force us to use 6 stacks of ships and one planet in combat. I was obviously refering to the method of damage nulification to highlight a game that used this mechanism to good effect.
Read what you said again. All you said was that it works much as you described and the battle was better than anything that came after. You said nothing about nullification. I implied nothing about your system by that since you said nothing about your system. If you don't want people to misunderstand what you say, then say more. My posts may be long but they are fairly detailed. When people have misunderstood me, it's because I didn't explain something well enough.
Impaler wrote:Most of your arguments are of this nature as their just ficticious senarios you have created that have no bearing how balance is likly to work in the game.
Until there is a fully working system of how everything would fit together and be balanced, all we can make are ficticious scenarios. You made half three in your last post on the previous page. You used less balanced scenarios then I did and they were just fine. I don't like your system because from the examples you used, it is a very unbalanced system. When you use an example like this:
Impaler wrote:A Small Fighter with 2 Titanium Armor, 4 Health total

Death Ray: 200 - (2 * 1.25) = 197.5 (Massive Overkill)
Rail Gun: 5 - (2 * 1.5) = 2 Damage (dies in 2 shots vs 1 with no armor)
Zenon Laser: 15 - (2 * 1.25) = 12.5 (Modest overkill)
Cobalt Warhead: 20 - (2 * 1.0) = 18 (Modest overkill)
Tacyon Beam: 80 - (2 * 1.0) = 78 (Massive Overkill)

A Medium Frigate with 15 Zortium Armor, 120 Health total

Deaht Ray: 200 - (15 * 1.75) = 173.75 (Modest overkill)
Rail Gun: 5 - (15 * .5) = -2.5 (Involnorable to this weapon)
Zeno Laser: 15 - (15 * 1.75) = -11.25 (Involnorable to this weapon)
Cobalt Warhead: 20 - (15 * 1.25) = 1.25 (Almost Involnorable)
Tacyon Beam: 80 - (15 * 1.0) = 65 (Kills in 2 Hits)

A Dreadnaught Battleship with 25 Titanium Armor, 500 Health total

Death Ray: 200 - (25 * 1.25) = 168.75 (Kills in 3 shots)
Rail Gun: 5 - (25 * 1.5) = -37.5 (Involnorable to this weapon)
Zeno Laser: 15 - (25 * 1.25) = -16.25 (Involnorable to this weapon)
Cobalt Warhead: 20 - (25 * 1.0) = -5 (Involnorable to this weapon)
Tacyon Beam: 80 - (25 * 1.0) = 55 (kills in 10 Hits vs 7 without armor)
it seems that most things would die in a couple of hits or be invulnerable to the weapons. It isn't until you get to the very last weapon on the very last example that your system would function in any kind of a fun way. I don't want my ships to either be invulnerable or die instantly. I wnat to have epic space battles where ships can take quite a few hits before blowing up.

You refute everyones arguements by calling them stupid, insubstantial, irrelevant or fictitious or by completely ignoring them. Most of my arguements have purpose and substance behind them and I will do my best to keep them that way.
Impaler wrote:Contrary to what you say who fires first in Moo1 is far less desisive then Tec level or Numbers. And because larger weapons are less efficient at dealing raw damage smaller weapons do have their uses. Your opinion of Moo1 seems rather low so my pointing out that it is a excelent game worth emulating to a degree wont convince you. Zpock though seems to have a higher regard for the game as he refered to it favorably. Is their anyone else who will speak in defence of Moo1?
I played MOO1 and it was fun, but that was ten or more years ago. Since then, the system has evolved and grown more complex. Now I was only fifteen back then and wasn't into understanding how the game worked or what the mechanics of it were. All I cared about was playing the game and having fun while doing it. I don't have MOO1 anymore soI can't go into it to see how everything worked. I also have no interest in playing it or figuring it out because I enjoy modern technology and games.
Impaler wrote:As for my saying the calculations should be simple. Yes, it is so the player can understand the games math without needing a calculator. The player when presented with the raw data for some ships in combat should imediatly be able to predict how the battle will play out. Keeping everything down to 2-3 critical numbers with very simple equations that combine them is nessary to do this. It also keeps us inline with Aquitaines "It should be no more mathematicaly complex then a board game" principle and the "A clever child should be able to understand and do the calcultions". These are principle I agree with and try to follow as should all of us.
Most people who play these games don't care about the math. Most people only want the basic details of it. The people who do go looking for them math are usually the people who enjoy the math and are usually good with math and will understand it. If we should follow what Aquitaine said, which I have never seen so it would be great if you could give me a link to where he said it, then we should use the MOO1 combat system because that is the only way the math will be simple.

I also hope you realize that Aquitaine was exaggerating when he said that because to reduce the game to math that simple, we would have to stick with 1+1=2. A game like this requires algebraic equations to function and if you understand one equation, you will understand them all, so it doesn't matter how many equations there are to figure out how damage is done to shields and then passed on to armor.
Impaler wrote:Perhaps as LM sugjested for shields their could be more then one means of calculating Armor and several different types of Armor as well. We could even dig up that list of Armor types and use it to name them. Ranoses armor could be called "Ablative" style armor (seems apropriate because Armor points are lost as you take damage). Mine might be "Dense" as it dosen't ever come off the ship. Some of the other ideas proposed could serve as additional options. Each armor has some Resistence Scores and Cost and Mass along with some critical number thats the key to how strong/good the armor is. As your Tec improves that number goes up. When the player puts armor on a ship they select the type of armor and Thickness. Thickness comes in a several options (None, Tinfoil, Light, Medium, Heavy, Ultra Heavy, ect ect...) The thicker the armor the higher the critical protection number on the ship. By combining different shield and armor options the player has a lot of possible combinations.
See this is what confuses me. You think the math of a single item should be simple but then you want to have multiple items of a similar type, each of which would have different math from eachother. Now the problem I have here is that you want to have multiple different ways that a class of items should work and you expect everyone who plays the game to be able to keep track of it and balance it.

Most people don't care how something works as long as it works. If there are things that they have to do to keep it working, they want those to be as simple as possible. I know I would be able to keep track of a dozen different ways something would work, but I would find it very annoying that I had to do that. It would be very complex. Many people would not be able to understand it and would just get frustrated and that would be the end.

If there was one or two ways shields worked (LM's suggestion) and one way armor worked, most people could deal with that. Make shields work half a dozen ways and armor work half a dozen ways and the lay person is going to be driven insane.

Something we all need to keep in mind is that we are here because we like doing these kinds of things and we are bale to understand it. The majority of the people who will play this game won't look at things the same way we do and won't like the inner workings of everything as much as we do.

I'm not a programming person. I don't know anything about programming and really don't care to learn anything about it. Thats why I don't participate in threads involving programming. If you look through the memebrs list, many people have never made a single post and the majority have made less than ten. This is because they are interested in the project and want to play the game when it is completed, but have no interest in the complex innner workings of a computer game.

We need to make the game simple to play and easy to understand so people will play it. The workings of the game don't need to be simple because most people won't care about it.

Now, I am perfectly willing to debate which system is better with you so that people can see the good points and bad points of both of our systems. I don't want to turn it into a personal arguement or a silly arguement over pointless things. If you want to debate/discuss these two points, thats fine, but don't ignore my arguements or lable them as strawman arguements and pick the ones that you can make a counter point to.

We also need to rememeber that this thread is supposed to be about a countering system, not how armor and shields should work. At this moment, I am perfectly content to agree with you that we disagree over the way armor and shields should work and get back to thcountering system.

Posted: Mon Nov 01, 2004 11:46 am
by discord
ranos: i hate to tell you this...no actualy i dont, but a counter system is how the armor/weapons/shields work, period.

personaly i dislike your idea of a counter system, since it is just rock/scissor/paper just slightly more complex, but not by much, and i for one abandoned that game for being to simple and childish a long time ago(as the only real skill is to read what your opponent will toss at you next, and being fast enough to react to it, and that does not apply in a 4x type game.)


Ranos wrote
Lots of different damage types = lots of complexity which = player confusion. By creating a few damage type categories and then puting weapons into them as best we can, we eliminate lots of confusion.
i want confusion, and it aint all that complex, if you just think a little.

think diabloII, you got resistance, and 'hp' and 'absorb', wich is more like i want it(not the same though, just somewhat similar.)

and ranos, Ablative armor, is a passive form of reactive armor, just so you know, and yes i know quite well how those things work, i wanted to make sure the rest did, and to point out that, composites are most likely what would be used 'in real life', and as such, why not make it so in the game, never seen a system like that, and i for one would like it.

and if you dont understand that the 'nullify' comes before the resistance in most cases(and the resistence in most examples are way to high.), cause either a strike stays on the outside of the armor, at wich point it does near 0 damage(oooh, we were bumped!), or manages to get in, at wich point you have a problem, since.
#1 you got a hole in the hull, wich is open to vacum, not a good thing.
#2 you got soft things inside the ship, wich dont like to get damaged...like reactor cores, and weapon systems.

small weapons vs heavy armor = 0(zero) damage, cause at most they damage the paintjob, wich can be seen if you try to take out a tank with a hunting rifle, shot all you want, wont bother the guys in the tank at all...other then possibly be annoyed by the loud 'ping' as the bullet ricochettes off the armor.(not sure about the last, but it seems plausible.)

on a larger scale, during WW2, ship cannons, small destroyers had 12cm(120mm) guns, and could stand there shooting at heavy battleship all day, and do superficial damage....although slightly exagerated, pretty close to the truth....and the fact that not many 'heavy battleship' were ever in use....however, when the munition can penetrate the armor, it can deliver the damage, since if you go up to cruiser class weapons(18-20cm in general) they could penetrate the armor(without hitting a open door, or something), and do damage INSIDE the ship....wich then created a whole different story.

bottom line, armor keeps damage outside, if it cant keep it outside, the weapon does serious damage.

shields lower the amount of damage delivered to the armor, wich gets 'depleted' by continued attacks....or you could use a battle system like starcraft....wich leads us to....

ranos wrote
How are players supposed to balance the game themselves? Your explaination doesn't clear that up. Are they supposed to spend a day before playing coming up with a system?
well, in all honesty, yes, if not longer. or you can just 'wing it', and see what happens.

and about 'balance'
as the game progresses, your opponent focus on missile tech, when you find that out, more PD systems, to 'counter' this new threat....later, he changes to beam weapons, at wich point you counter with more robust shields/armor(or some special that lowers laser effect...or something)...

with a 'player builds the armor' system, you can build armor to counter your enemies weapons of choice....he got lots of explosive weapons(missiles), patch on a reactive armor component...and/or change armor composition with higher amount of titanium/molybden alloy, to bolster the resistance from that kind of damage.

see? evolution of balance, by REMOVING hard limits.

Posted: Mon Nov 01, 2004 10:40 pm
by Ranos
discord wrote:ranos: i hate to tell you this...no actualy i dont, but a counter system is how the armor/weapons/shields work, period.
When in this post did I ever say they shouldn't? I think maybe I said it is a possibility but no more than that.
discord wrote:personaly i dislike your idea of a counter system, since it is just rock/scissor/paper just slightly more complex, but not by much, and i for one abandoned that game for being to simple and childish a long time ago(as the only real skill is to read what your opponent will toss at you next, and being fast enough to react to it, and that does not apply in a 4x type game.)
Well, discord, I'm going to say to you what I said to everybody else earlier, if you don't like my system, come up with your own. Don't bash my system without even being able to make a system yourslef.
discord wrote:Ranos wrote
Lots of different damage types = lots of complexity which = player confusion. By creating a few damage type categories and then puting weapons into them as best we can, we eliminate lots of confusion.
i want confusion, and it aint all that complex, if you just think a little.

think diabloII, you got resistance, and 'hp' and 'absorb', wich is more like i want it(not the same though, just somewhat similar.)
The more you put into a system, the more complex it gets which means the more confusing it gets. Lets look back over my system. I have put HP into my system. I have put resistances into my system. The only thing I haven't put in it is absorbing damage, which is a possibility, it just hasn't been discussed before.
discord wrote:and ranos, Ablative armor, is a passive form of reactive armor, just so you know, and yes i know quite well how those things work, i wanted to make sure the rest did, and to point out that, composites are most likely what would be used 'in real life', and as such, why not make it so in the game, never seen a system like that, and i for one would like it.
I don't know for sure, but I would be willing to bet that the armor used on the most advanced tanks today is reactive armor on top of composite armor. If the future is going to be anything, it is going to be similar to that with composite armor as the inner armor shell and a countering armor as the outer armor shell.
discord wrote:and if you dont understand that the 'nullify' comes before the resistance in most cases(and the resistence in most examples are way to high.), cause either a strike stays on the outside of the armor, at wich point it does near 0 damage(oooh, we were bumped!), or manages to get in, at wich point you have a problem, since.
#1 you got a hole in the hull, wich is open to vacum, not a good thing.
#2 you got soft things inside the ship, wich dont like to get damaged...like reactor cores, and weapon systems.
If an armor is resistant to something, that will be a factor in how much it nullifies. You use Daiblo 2 as an example with resistance and absorb. Resistance would work the same way in FO as it would work in D2. Absorb would of course be more like nullification but damage would not be absorbed, it would just be stopped and it should be, IMHO, a set number, not a percentage. In D2, damage is reduced by the resistances first and then absorb is calculated from the remainder. That is how resistances work. If something is resistant to something else, it will modify the damage before any other factors are calculated in.

It also doesn't matter what numbers are used in examples. They are examples and not set numbers. Right now, we are trying to set up a system of how things would function together, not the exact numbers.

The rest of that paragraph gets confusing. You start out talking about resistance and nullification and end up on hits getting through. From what you say about how damage would work, you seem to share Impaler's opinion that armor is nothing more than a nullifier and would have no HP itself.
discord wrote:bottom line, armor keeps damage outside, if it cant keep it outside, the weapon does serious damage.
If you are saying that a weapon does either zero damage or damages internals and the only damage to the armor is the hole, that is not always true. Take the current reactive armor. If it gets hit, it explodes outward preventing the damage from getting through. The armor is now damaged but it didn't take zero damage and it also didn't let the damage through. If that is how modern armor works, why would we switch back to the all or nothing armor?
discord wrote:shields lower the amount of damage delivered to the armor, wich gets 'depleted' by continued attacks....or you could use a battle system like starcraft....wich leads us to....
That is one way they can work, but not the only way.
ranos wrote
How are players supposed to balance the game themselves? Your explaination doesn't clear that up. Are they supposed to spend a day before playing coming up with a system?
well, in all honesty, yes, if not longer. or you can just 'wing it', and see what happens.
And how many people do you think would actually find it fun to spend that much time making the game work so they can actually play it? Can you say MOO3? MOO3 wasn't balanced and worked like crap. People did one of two things, they stuck around in an attempt to make the game work or they gave up on it quickly. I can also gaurantee you that the majority quit the game. Some of those that quit started this project and I find it hard to believe that they would want to release a final version that forces people to do the same thing MOO3 did.
discord wrote:and about 'balance'
as the game progresses, your opponent focus on missile tech, when you find that out, more PD systems, to 'counter' this new threat....later, he changes to beam weapons, at wich point you counter with more robust shields/armor(or some special that lowers laser effect...or something)...

with a 'player builds the armor' system, you can build armor to counter your enemies weapons of choice....he got lots of explosive weapons(missiles), patch on a reactive armor component...and/or change armor composition with higher amount of titanium/molybden alloy, to bolster the resistance from that kind of damage.

see? evolution of balance, by REMOVING hard limits.
Balance is about having a system that functions properly without the player having to do anything. The players will counter eachother with different techs while in the game, but if we don't have a system that allows them to do that in place and balanced before they play the game, then they won't be able to do it in the game.

If we make armors that already counter the weapons, then the player only needs to research them.

How many times does it have to be said, KISS. The more work you force the player to do, the more complex the game is and the less fun it is. Isn't one of the key phrases for this project Macromanagement? What you are talking about means a lot of micromanagement, which is a big thing that killed MOO3. To get it working properly, you had to micro everything.

Posted: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:44 pm
by discord
first off.

Ranos wrote
What you are talking about means a lot of micromanagement, which is a big thing that killed MOO3. To get it working properly, you had to micro everything.
no, i disagree.
what killed moo3 was the total lack of balance, in combination with lack of control(due to FAILED attempts at removing micro management.).


Ranos wrote
Balance is about having a system that functions properly without the player having to do anything. The players will counter eachother with different techs while in the game, but if we don't have a system that allows them to do that in place and balanced before they play the game, then they won't be able to do it in the game.
again, wee are of different opinions on the matter, you say 'make it as easy as possible', while i say 'give the player more control'....sadly enough these two approaches are almost entirely mutualy exclusive.


Ranos wrote
If we make armors that already counter the weapons, then the player only needs to research them.
well, i am not against this, really....i am however against the static nature you want to implement it as, wich in reality is a glorified version of rock/paper/scissors(or jankenpon if you are from japan...) wich is to damn simple if you ask me, if you go that way, why not pre make the units, remove ALL ship design(it is after all just extraneous fluff), and blance the units against each other, giving them tech upgrades, just like starcraft(wich you seem to like so much).


ranos wrote
If you are saying that a weapon does either zero damage or damages internals and the only damage to the armor is the hole, that is not always true. Take the current reactive armor. If it gets hit, it explodes outward preventing the damage from getting through. The armor is now damaged but it didn't take zero damage and it also didn't let the damage through. If that is how modern armor works, why would we switch back to the all or nothing armor?
well, if you had bothered reading it, that was also in there, as a side note, and 'reactive armor ontop of composite armor' is just another word for 'composite armor', putting a reactive layer on a composite armor, is just another part of what makes it 'composite'....and very likely in higher tech, will be refractive top layer, to counter EM weapons(like lasers/masers/gasers/etc.)


ranos wrote
Well, discord, I'm going to say to you what I said to everybody else earlier, if you don't like my system, come up with your own. Don't bash my system without even being able to make a system yourslef.
i did, when i first pointed out the use of damage types/nullification/resistance the first time around, wich was almost a year ago(and two? ), it aint MY problem you were not around to read it then....
might also add that i HAVE pointed out some of the details i'd prefer, but as usual, noone even bothers to read'em, perhaps they cant understand it...and that is why noone ever makes any sensical comments?

and btw. i for one i cant see how a system based on starcraft(wich is about APM's and is finished in a matter of minutes) can work in a good 4x type game(wich is about thinking forward, and predicting things, and is played in a matter of hours, if not days or weeks.....) the basis of how the game works is to damn different....although this could be explained if you have never played against(or seen matches with) decent players, i for one know a guy that was in the previous world championship in WC3, he used to play starcraft....he was...good...there aswell, matches was over in a matter of minutes, even against equaly good players.


ranos wrote
When in this post did I ever say they shouldn't? I think maybe I said it is a possibility but no more than that.
dunno, i read it SOMEWHERE when i was reading through this thread some time back, and you were the biggest whiner, so i just assumed it was you, excuse me if my assumption was wrong.


end of it all, to capture what i want to say?
"free your mind, the rest will follow"
stop following what has already been done, and try and think of NEW ways to do things, you talk like some microsoft jackass, that only cares about profit, and sales margins...so better safe(go with something established), then to risk it with something new and untested....well, according to just about every rule of the 'book' moo3 SHOULD have been a success, why was it not? because they only tried to improve on what have been done, without anything new, without real vision.

(ed note:The following statements will get you banned. here on display:)

feel insulted, that was how it was intented, if you dont, then you SHOULD feel ashamed, and get the hell out.

(ed note: go to Atari's forums if you want to behave like children. -Aq)

yes people, i am tired, and in a bad mood again, but it seems i just cant stand stale minds.



//discord

Posted: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:50 pm
by discord
oh, btw. about

ranos wrote
Balance is about having a system that functions properly without the player having to do anything.
i dont know about you, but i like to PLAY games, as in the game being interactive, if i dont have to DO anything, it is just a movie.

the more complex a game is, the longer it STAYS interesting, what you are talking about, is not really complexity, it is 'learning curve', wich really does not have THAT much to do with eachother....try anacreon http://www.neurohack.com/anacreon/ it is a very simple game, wich is well balanced, just the way YOU want it.

Posted: Tue Nov 02, 2004 1:07 pm
by Bastian-Bux
Aehm, it seems some people have low knowledge of "complexity".

The english (and also the german) language knows two similar words:

complex
complicated

complex could also be explained as: diverse, having many different facettes.
complicated could also be explained as: difficult

Well, I suppose the most of us want a complex game. But I suppose not very many of us want a complicated game.

So, what I do when I think about a design issues is, asking myself: is this adding more complexity? Or does it just make things more complicated.

3 small and easy formulaes make up a nice looking and very complex fractal.

3 complicated formulaes can make a real ugly mess. :twisted:

Posted: Tue Nov 02, 2004 2:54 pm
by discord
bux: and the joy of oit is, that it's supposed to work under the hood, you are not SUPPOSED to understand how everything works.

that is what i am thinking when i look at game design, a game i would like to play, and although i know every formula, every piece of code in the game, i can still be surprised.

not that it is ever gonna happen, but a guy can dream right?

Posted: Tue Nov 02, 2004 5:44 pm
by Impaler
Ok lets try to work togethern and be nice. I have expanded a bit on the Compromise plan I speculated on earlier, please give it some condideration and tell me if you think this idea is worth persuing.

Basic Premiss that that their are 3-6 different types of "Energy Shields" each acthing in a differnt manor to protect the ships. Some absorb damage, some Nulify it, some reduce damage by a %. Basicaly all the simple mathematical things we could do to protect from an attack. The calculations are simple and straitforward requiring only a single operation to determine, the shield has only 1 or 2 key variables that plug into its equation. Shield tecs get refined much like weapons and their protection values incresse. When a player wants to shield their ship they select 1 type of shield and the shields Strength, their are 4 choices (None, Light, Medium, Heavy). Stronger shields cost more but incresse the shields protection, all costs increese with the size of a ship so the same shield on a fighter would cost less then on a battleship. Shields might have Resistences to some damage types but I am personaly oposed to it.

Armor works in almost adsactly the same mannor, 3-6 types with differnt methods of preventing damage. Idealy their are no Shields and Armors sharing the same equation so in total 6-12 differnt equations are needed, I think we can come up with that rather easily considering something like 8 are already on the thread. Armor is refined and put on ships the same way but the choice is now for "Thickness" or "Layers" (None, Light, Medium, Heavy) that incresse protection. Again costs scale with the size of the ship. Armor definatly has Resistence Values which enter into its equation to modify the damage recived.

By letting the player pick interesting combos of Armor and Shield they can create ships that are very well defended from particular types of attacks simply by the math involved.