Author Topic: Apparently I'm Spoiled  (Read 5341 times)

Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #30 on: March 22, 2013, 03:29:20 PM »
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Well, to be fair, the AI had him at his last legs by the end.
If he had somehow failed with the last set of warheads, then he would have almost certainly lost quickly afterwords.
I actually have no idea what would have happened. My HW still had a modular fort, turrets, and minefields, but the AI had a bunch of core guardians...

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From what I can tell from previous posts, 10/10 made him work DAMN hard for this victory.
Yeah. This was a hard one.

 In fact, it was so much harder than most of my previous games that I think the players get too good a deal with minor factions on 10/10. Maybe add another x1.0 to the 10 exo multipliers.

Another brutal post just for 10/10 could work...
Adding major electric ammo immunity to the AI home stations should probably happen...
MOAR is always an option...

But I'd prefer something like a doom-only patrolling H/K, or other unique mechanic.
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #31 on: March 22, 2013, 03:55:04 PM »
But I'd prefer something like a doom-only patrolling H/K
I could totally arrange that.  But, seriously, if that were an always-on thing (not a plot or whatever), wouldn't that just feel cheap?  I try to keep the "curve" from 9 to 10 relatively continuous, rather than just having 10 be wildly far worse than 9.8 or whatever.  Seems like tossing an HK into special forces and/or threatfleet would just maul you.

Though a special forces HK would certainly alter offensive strategies.
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Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #32 on: March 22, 2013, 04:02:49 PM »
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I could totally arrange that.  But, seriously, if that were an always-on thing (not a plot or whatever), wouldn't that just feel cheap?  I try to keep the "curve" from 9 to 10 relatively continuous, rather than just having 10 be wildly far worse than 9.8 or whatever.  Seems like tossing an HK into special forces and/or threatfleet would just maul you.

I don't think that the 9.8 to 10 transition should be similar in size to the 1-2 -...-9.8 progression. 9.8 is supposed to be beatable without crazy cheese. 10 isn't.

That said, a threatfleet H/K would be pretty ridiculous. I was specifically thinking of an SF H/K, though it targeting your homeworld/other thing like an exo could work. It should spawn/respawn every 4 or so hours (1 per AI, of course; possibly staggered).

Though you may want some other input for the future of 10/10.
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline TechSY730

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #33 on: March 22, 2013, 04:05:39 PM »
Adding major electric ammo immunity to the AI home stations should probably happen...

Surprised that this hasn't happened already to both human AND AI homes.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #34 on: March 22, 2013, 04:27:03 PM »
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9.8 is supposed to be beatable without crazy cheese. 10 isn't.
That part I agree with.  Though I wouldn't be too bothered if 9.8 was in the "beatable, but you have to cheese a bit" category.  I'm much more concerned about the top of the scale not being high enough than I am about it being too high.

I don't think that the 9.8 to 10 transition should be similar in size to the 1-2 -...-9.8 progression.
Well, I'm not sure I agree.  I want 10 to kill you, but I want it to play by the same rules that 9.8 does, just with somewhat more cranked up numbers.  If it just gets some free invincible death machine that you don't see on any other difficulty, I think that's stepping out of bounds.

It used to be that 10 was just punishingly brutally stomp-your-face-into-the-pavement hard.  9.8 wasn't nearly so bad.  Then Wanderer and I conspired to bring it down to "a logical extension of the 9 through 9.8 run", to put it one way.  Since then I've basically been trying to keep up with the more insane of you in keeping a 10/10 win out of reach.  A year later, I've yet to succeed ;)  But I think this is more fun for the players than just having something that puts an armor-piercing explosive boot through your skull in the first 7 minutes.

Anyway, my takeaway from this game is:

- Well, first, Congratulations again.  A straight-up win on a straight-up game at max difficulty.  No funny superweapons even, though those minirams were a windfall for you.

- The balance for this appears to be actually pretty close to right.  You really had to fight for it, and it almost had you at various points (iirc).  But a little extra turning of the thumbscrews on the numbers would not be out of place.

- Conversely, superweapon factions are a bit too nice on 10/10.  You suggested boosting the exo multiplier further for 10.  I'm inclined to agree, though others have been asking for the same to come down.  I think their concerns had more to do with the cleanliness of the math (not having FS intensity AND difficulty factor into exo size, etc) than the practical balance.

- Home command stations (all around) should be immune to major electric to avoid lightning warhead assassination.

- Nukes should kill carrier contents, not just the carriers, except for contents which are themselves nuke-immune (that will be a trickier thing since carriers really aren't transports and their contents don't exist until the game "adds water", but can-do).

- Go ahead and do the Riot mkIV thing while bringing the total of the mkI/II/III's (and modules) down to about 2/3rds their current ED output.

- The game needs to check for your profile name and add some HKs when it sees it ;)
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Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #35 on: March 22, 2013, 04:59:45 PM »
I don't know that I like 10 as "9.8 but a little bit harder." It should have something special.

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If it just gets some free invincible death machine that you don't see on any other difficulty, I think that's stepping out of bounds.
While I agree that something to make the game blatantly impossible is just not fun, I don't think an H/K mkI or two makes that kind of difference, if confined to special forces. You would have to work around it, certainly, but it won't stomp your face without you making some kind of mistake. I'm pretty sure a mkI fleetship+starship fleet will kill it.

It would feel brutal but not impossible, I think.

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The game needs to check for your profile name and add some HKs when it sees it
Same as my forum handle.

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<other stuff>
Sounds good.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2013, 06:40:39 PM by Faulty Logic »
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #36 on: March 23, 2013, 12:57:11 PM »
I don't know that I like 10 as "9.8 but a little bit harder."
I don't mean only a little bit; the increase at each step on the 9 through 10 run is already a lot nastier than the increase on the earlier steps.  But I don't want any one step to be more than, say, a 50% boost in difficulty.  If we really needed more than that, I could add a 9.9 that's maybe 30% harder than 9.8, and make 10 30% harder than 9.9.  Or I could re-adjust the 9-to-10 scale in general.

And I imagine someone will pop in to repeat the request for an overall rescaling where 3 is the new 7 or whatever; I can understand the reasoning but "7 is the default" is so ingrained in so many sources of info on this game that I don't think that's a good idea.

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It should have something special.
Well, maybe.  But generally if you want something special they're separate options from the difficulty itself.  Otherwise it'd be like "on diff 10, it forces the 'double waves' setting on"... what if you want to play diff 10 _without_ the double waves setting on?  Are you out of luck?
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Offline Toranth

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #37 on: March 23, 2013, 02:23:33 PM »
It should have something special.
Well, maybe.  But generally if you want something special they're separate options from the difficulty itself.  Otherwise it'd be like "on diff 10, it forces the 'double waves' setting on"... what if you want to play diff 10 _without_ the double waves setting on?  Are you out of luck?
It used to be that the +1 Tech level was the 'special', but since there's AIP proportional scaling for ships now, that's basically irrelevant (Except for Heroic AIs).

You could extend the 'Core Worlds' out by one distance, or have random Core World-like Mk IV worlds with Mk V guardposts and such scattered around the galaxy.
You could add a Mothership to each Homeworld from the beginning.
A Special Forces H/K doesn't seem like a bad idea to me, except for
a) possibility of Special Forces converting to Threatfleet,
b) Special Focres currently defends almost everything because of the CSGs.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #38 on: March 23, 2013, 02:33:14 PM »
Yea, that +1 tech level was a problem for balance, especially when it applied to 9+ instead of just 10.  Even when the AI got a reduced number of higher mark ships it was still a _massive_ increase in the difficulty (starting with the very first wave).
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Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #39 on: March 23, 2013, 09:47:09 PM »
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It should have something special.
Well, maybe.  But generally if you want something special they're separate options from the difficulty itself.  Otherwise it'd be like "on diff 10, it forces the 'double waves' setting on"... what if you want to play diff 10 _without_ the double waves setting on?  Are you out of luck?
Good point. After some mulling, I agree that 10 doesn't need anything specific to it. But cranking the number-screws more is called for, with maybe a new base game plot or two, like patrolling H/Ks.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2013, 12:53:07 AM by Faulty Logic »
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline Diazo

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #40 on: March 23, 2013, 10:48:24 PM »
Looking back at the settings, I'm not sure how much of a buff I'd want to give diff 10.

There are some save scums mentioned, I'm going to assume there were some more that did not get mentioned. (?)

Also, complete visibility was on, without that you don't have the ability to plan your expansion from the get go which makes the game last longer as scouting takes up time. Now, that time is more on the early game then the late game, but a longer game is harder.

Add in Mini-Rams + ShieldBearers, those are arguably (very arguably I'm aware) the two most powerful fleet ships at the moment so the RNG was quite friendly in giving that ARS and the lack of tachyon on the homeworlds.

Then the warhead spam to top everything off.

Now, I suppose the real question I am asking here is what is 10/10 supposed to be. Balanced on that edge of just barely doable if things line up in the players favor? Or something that is supposed to crush the player with no chance of being beaten without significant cheese?

If it's supposed to be balanced on that edge, I'd say that enough things landed in Faulty's favor here that it is pretty much spot on.

If it is supposed to crush the player without significant cheese then we do need to look at a significant buff of some sort as there was no (or very little) cheese on Faulty's part in this game.

If we are trying to balance on that edge, maybe just buff special forces and the strategic reserve a bit? I do not think anything beyond minor tweaks are needed.

(I do need to catch up after all, I have not beaten 10/10 since the big special forces/strategic reserve change. ;) )

D.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #41 on: March 23, 2013, 11:03:43 PM »
If it's supposed to be balanced on that edge, I'd say that enough things landed in Faulty's favor here that it is pretty much spot on.

If it is supposed to crush the player without significant cheese then we do need to look at a significant buff of some sort as there was no (or very little) cheese on Faulty's part in this game.
Well, ideally it would be almost the former, but with him still losing.  In other words:

Assuming a player who plays within a stone's throw or two of optimal:

- if you play with no cheese, and the RNG is bad to you, you get curbstomped (not necessarily early game, but you have no illusions about who won that game)
- if you play with no cheese, and the RNG is apathetic toward you, you lose fairly soundly but you feel like you probably had a chance if so-and-so...
- if you play with no cheese, and the RNG is relatively kind to you, you actually get pretty close to winning, but still lose
- if you play with cheese, you might win, and if you do then I nerf the cheese (probably, depends on how obviously cheesy it was; "turning off waves in the lobby" isn't getting nerfed)

Like I said, that's ideally.  In the real world I'll settle for less-close finishes on the side where the player loses.  As I've said before, there should be no no-cheese 10/10 wins.  But I'm happy to pull the bait only a relatively small step at a time so some of you can have the satisfaction of beating it on its journey to practical immortality ;)

One thing to note is that this whole "almost winning but still losing" scenario for the really-good player with the favorable-RNG would probably be pretty frustrating to many players, but that just comes with the territory.  In a lot of ways to have a good chance at winning at this level the player has to be patient more than they have to be (or drawing from the advice/records of) a strategic genius, though some part of the latter is probably necessary too.
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Offline chemical_art

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #42 on: March 23, 2013, 11:30:22 PM »
I guess that depends on the definition of cheese.

What I consider "good RNG" others consider cheese, and what I consider "cheese" others consider "exploits"

In this example, I consider it cheesy, because there was a very good synergy, exploited to the max. Do I consider this bad? No.
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Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #43 on: March 23, 2013, 11:38:43 PM »
I think if the RNG hands it to you, it's not cheese per-se.  If it hands you TDLs and you just exploit them out the wazoo then that's potentially cheesy but it just means the unit (or at least a particular usage of it) needs a nerf. 

Or if you reroll a map a billion times until the initial scouting gives you really awesome ARS picks and locations and such.  That's pretty cheesy, but that's not the RNG handing it to you, that's you mugging the RNG ;)  Not that I don't sympathize...

Usually when I think of the kinds of "stinky cheese" that "disqualify" a 10/10 win from being a bug-report in my eyes, it's the sort of shenanigans that starts in the lobby.

Complete-vis is borderline, unless there's a serious argument for the scouting game being degenerate (as has been in the past with normal scouts, and quite recently if spirecraft were enabled with those scouts).
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Offline chemical_art

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Re: Apparently I'm Spoiled
« Reply #44 on: March 24, 2013, 01:14:37 AM »
I think if the RNG hands it to you, it's not cheese per-se.  If it hands you TDLs and you just exploit them out the wazoo then that's potentially cheesy but it just means the unit (or at least a particular usage of it) needs a nerf. 

Or if you reroll a map a billion times until the initial scouting gives you really awesome ARS picks and locations and such.  That's pretty cheesy, but that's not the RNG handing it to you, that's you mugging the RNG ;)  Not that I don't sympathize...

Usually when I think of the kinds of "stinky cheese" that "disqualify" a 10/10 win from being a bug-report in my eyes, it's the sort of shenanigans that starts in the lobby.

Complete-vis is borderline, unless there's a serious argument for the scouting game being degenerate (as has been in the past with normal scouts, and quite recently if spirecraft were enabled with those scouts).

Yeah, with the current lobby settings, you can get a certain certainty of cheese "no waves, etc" but there is plenty of RNG going on, and that I don't consider cheese.
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