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The Last Federation / Re: Thinking bout getting this game
« Last post by Logorouge on May 16, 2018, 10:35:43 AM »
I'll just leave this here: (The Biscuit Federation part 1)

If you enjoy playing the evil puppeteer and experimenting, this is a super fun game. Easy recommendation.
Balance wise, at the time I didn't stumble upon any easy loophole and it had many many updates after that, so it's hard for me to say.
The Last Federation / Re: Thinking bout getting this game
« Last post by x4000 on May 16, 2018, 10:00:22 AM »
I'm not aware of any major balance issues.

You might check out The Biscuit Federation (two parts) animated video with Total Biscuit recounting his playthrough. It's like my favorite thing ever. He did find a loophole that some other folks also found, and we patched that up in 2015; he notes we patched it out, but actually we just made it properly nuanced instead.
The Last Federation / Thinking about getting this game
« Last post by Ovalcircle1 on May 15, 2018, 05:16:43 PM »
2 questions

1: is it fun?

2. Is it balanced? It's common knowledge that every Hearts of iron IV patch breaks something. Is everything in order?
The Last Federation / Feedback - Unexpected Turns and too many clicks
« Last post by ArnaudB on May 15, 2018, 08:00:20 AM »
The Last Feedback

(Edit: at the time of writing, the second DLC has been installed (Betrayal) but not the second (Technology) due to me wanting to figure out what the first DLC brought before going for the second.)


Hello everyone,

In waiting for Ai War 2 to get properly released with enough features, I went back to Ai War 1 then recently to The Last Federation. I had only played a measly twenty hours in TLF to my hundreds in AI war. That was perplexing since I liked TLF’s premise as much as AI War, and my last playthrough was apparently in 2014. Changes and DLCs content made me happy, but oh boy did I figure out why I left after a couple dozen hours.

The good first. The best thing about the game is the unexpected turns it takes at every game: the changed solar systems, the varied starting relationship, the attempts at ruining people lives making the federations better and the much more common attempts at making people happy causing much frustrated grief between war-like and honor-bound species. It’s all good, always have a backup specie, work on two axes making friends friendlier and at the end you can have two new mutual friend making everybody friend. Or, you know, ensure you have one side to become a federation when one wipe out the other.

The sheer freedom in being to move between planets, that it takes time yet so little you can move around with no penalty yet still physically moving between the places. That’s wonderful too, that freedom you see and feel.

Now what is there to cause problems? Well, the interface and specifically the interface that punishes the player the better the player plays. How so? When you want to research and technology or build something: both necessary, fulfilling and cash-rewarding actions, you need a lot of clicks and menu interactions. I wish to build an university: select the planet, open friendly action, select the build option, select the building, give the okay, activate super-speed, close the completion menu. That’s seven action with only ‘activate super-speed’ having a keybind.

Do I want to build three universities (the maximum number)? That’s three times as many clicks so twenty clicks. Do I want to build three others buildings three times? That’s a hundred eighty more clicks to do. It’s worse the better manufacturing the player has, since as the cost in time get lower, the more incentive a smart player has to order something build.

Technology research has the same issue, but emotionally feel worse. Unlike building (where you’re pay very well), research is better with short researches times thus scientists. Often it means researches are going to be 1-2 months and it’s going to take six-seven click per research again. Worse, since it gets annoying to navigate through menus again, it encourages putting off researches which hurt the player and force him to research in bulk.

This interface issue happens in other places. In this case the Bovarines works as a good example. They have an ability to better the relationship better two races at a credit cost, and you have to select both races every-time even if you’re only focusing on two races for a while. The player has to go through the menus and select the races in a sometime finicky drop-down menu. So what happens? The smart player stack up on credit and make his selection once, then spam ‘okay’ a bunch of time to skyrocket a relationship between two races rather than anything more complicated or smarter.

The same happens when using Andor’s trade-boosting option : you can stack the trade route ‘okay’ till the game force you to manually change which trade route get boosted.

With all this said, and likely elaborated in such a complex fashion that it must resemble one of my convoluted scheme from within the game, what could be done? I see a few alternatives.

The first is a list of ‘last actions’ taken allowing to repeat an action already taken, such as lauding, improving relationship between races or bribing a race. The second is shortcuts (hotkeys) allowing to navigate to the friendly-hostile menus and within the various menus that are within the menus. The third is the ability to queue non-instant tasks on a planet, possibly complimented with drop-down menus (like for research) to not close when an option is selected. The fourth would be the ability to build multiple of a same building rather than one at a time.

Those are the possibilities I see at the time. Is there other stuff? That’s likely. For now what come to mind is the exploit allowed by the “Tax breaks” kind of option, sinking others RCI values in favour of economy. “Tax breaks” can be spammed by telling a race to invest elsewhere than economy, then counselling “tax breaks” again for the low total price of half a thousands credits. It does make easy to make some races join to due the catastrophic state of their RCI of the day, but it does feel really… unnatural to be listened with such contradictory and devastating results.

…You can probably guess I do as well in Betrayed mode as in Federation mode. I seem to be very good at being destructive with friendly advice.

Or am I?

This constructive criticism was written in the full spirit of an helpful Hydral.
I know what you're saying and you're right. What I'm asking is outside of game-play, within the lore. The story goes that the AI rose up against Humanity and took over the (formerly Human controlled) galaxy. Humanity then beats the AI and wins in some way. Is there a main timeline or reality or whatever where Humanity wins by itself with no help whatsoever? Because the minor factions, in whatever lore there is, are pretty powerful.

Sure, the Dark Spire doesn't do anything by itself, but with the addition of Humanity or whoever fighting with another faction on the same planet, things start to get ugly, fast. Plus, the AI has a structure on its home planet just to kill the Dark Spire. If that doesn't say "This faction is really bad and I need to make sure I don't get killed by it", I don't know what does. Adding on to that, the Dark Spire can create more vengeance generators so more Dark Spire can spawn.

The Dyson sphere is literally a star encased in metal. It's huge. It should be spawning ships left and right (in lore) to fight whoever controls the sector of space that it wants nobody to own.

The Devourer goes in a straight line from wormhole to wormhole. In game-play, that makes sense. Does it do that outside of game-play? Because in AIWC, it went after almost every little ship it could eat. This isn't AIWC of course, but outside of game-play, it should be destroying everything it can to fuel itself. Add in a Dark Spire Vengeance Generator and it's a recipe for disaster.

The Macrophage literally eats ships and the spores are invisible to the AI. Lore-wise, the population should be spiraling out of control with all the AI ships to eat.

Zenith Golems: I'll give you that. But even in game-play, they tank hard and hit even harder.

The Nanocaust is the big one i wanted to talk about. They are a zombie faction. They zombify ships and take over the galaxy. Have you seen the Aberrations and Abominations? They hit really hard and tank almost everything. Not even a volley from the Devourer can kill these guys in one shot. And you expect the AI to be able to do something about it? That's just in game play. Now I know hat you had a conversation about the lore and gameplay back on July 26, 2017.!-'nanocaust-test-and-revise-pass-2'/msg215709/#msg215709
(Start Comments)
You:If you play right now, the Nanocaust will conquer every planet in the galaxy in something like an hour to an hour and a half, and I'm pretty sure it's not beatable by any human. I'm in the process of changing this.

Also at the moment the nanocaust will bump up the AI Progress when it conquers planets, but I believe Keith intends to change the game so that special factions won't increase the progress.

My eventual intent is to have the Nanocaust conquer a slowly expanding portion of the galaxy for itself, but to not really intend to kill the AI (it might decide to kill the humans though). However, I would like to get a hacking mechanic in so that if you hack the nanocaust's starting Constructor then it will assist you in killing the AI as an alternative win condition.

 WolfWhiteFire: The lore you gave doesn't really allow for the nanobots to not finish off the AI, maybe you could add some sort of special building (or buildings) on the AI homeworld that kills any nanobots that go onto the homeworld or wherever the controller or whatever is? That would prevent them killing the AI, give a reasonable explanation for that, and you could decide whether to make it invincible or where the humans can destroy it so the AI has to fend off the nanobots. Also possibly make it where the players have to beat the nanocaust to win also if it is active, since even if they beat the AI the nanocaust would be kind of a big threat also.

Page 2 You: Well, the lore exists to serve gameplay, not gameplay the lore. What I originally implemented was the Lore version of the Unstoppable Nanocaust and it didn't make the game fun (I mean, it was fun to watch the AI be crushed like a ripe melon, but it wasn't a game anymore, it was a "watch the AI and humanity die" video). If you try to play with the Nanocaust right now then you'll eventually observe similar behaviour.

I think the Nanocaust should add some interesting strategic depth, but it also shouldn't completely dominate the game (though if we have a Faction Strength Modifier a la AIWC, I'll certainly make it capable of dominating the game). I think it is critical that the human player be able to defeat the default Nanocaust for "Fun Gameplay" purposes, and I think it's more interesting if the nanobots and the AI are "at war, with the outcome undecided" when the humans show up. If all you have to do is turtle until the Nanobots destroy the AI, well, that's boring.

(End comments)

I agree that you should stand a chance against the Nanocaust. But they basically are nigh-unstoppable. In a straight up fight, you'd have to have an overwhelming force to fight them, and make sure that overwhelming force has high damage and high health. The AI has no hit and run tactic to destroy the Nanocaust. And sending more ships at them only gives them more firepower to fight everybody else.

My argument might have assumptions and stuff in it, but that's because I don't really have anything to go on. My issue is one of those "story and game-play segregation" tropes. Most relevant I could find was this: Replace the cards with the gameplay. I understand that if the game-play were made to fit the lore, it would be a mess. Humanity would be overwhelmed in a few hours if minor factions were turned on. I'm just saying, if one were to look at this from a non game-play perspective, the AI conquering the galaxy would make no sense because it would have to contend with all these other factions vying for control as well.
I think without human help, most of the minor factions aren't going to do much against the AI.

The default version of the Dyson Sphere should be balanced so that it can't free itself. It should only be capable of fighting the AI on its own at high intensities.

The Dark Spire doesn't do anything unless there's already combat going on.

The Macrophage and Devourers will kill some random AI units, but they don't take planets away from the AI.

The Zenith golems start the game disabled and require the humans to fix them up.

The Nanocaust is intended to be a real threat to the AI, but the AI's response to it is diminished in-game because otherwise the player would be killed as an afterthought by the AI. I do intend the AI to periodically send Exo waves against the Nanocaust once Exo waves are in the game.

In the Galaxy Map, look at the "Displaying" and "Filter" options at the bottom of the screen; you should be able to accomplish what you need with those. Also note that at the bottom of the "Displaying" section there's a search, so you can find a specific unit you've lost track of.
AI War Classic - Technical Support / Finding units / displaying own units
« Last post by t4r0n on May 14, 2018, 05:03:40 AM »

I hope this is the right place to ask. I am struggling to find an option to switch on that I can see how many ships "I" have at my planets. As sometimes some ships get lost due to old waypoints, or scouts keep on sitting outside after the battles are long gone. Can I turn that on somewhere?

Thank you in advance!
     Is there a specific timeline where Humanity wins? This might sound like a weird question but when you read what I have to say next it will make sense. By specific timeline, I mean is there an official timeline where it's only the AI and Humanity in the galaxy and Humanity wins? I'm only asking because of the sheer amount of "minor" factions that can really put up a fight with or outright stomp the AI. I'll run it down:

Humanity (The Player): Not a minor faction, but it should be on this list. Beating the AI is the whole point of the game, so this faction poses a real threat to the AI. -3 points for AI. +1 for Humanity (for existing).

Human Resistance: Kinda somewhat powerful. Not much of a real threat. -1 point for AI.

Human Marauders: Once they establish a base, they become an actual threat to the AI. -2 points for everybody

Lost Spire Frigate: Untested.

Dyson Sphere: Slow at first, but once it gets going it's almost unstoppable. Minus 2 points for AI and +2 for Humanity

The Nanocaust: These guys are the AI killer. Literally made as a faction to rival the "greatest threat in the galaxy" (the AI). Sending infinite ships against an enemy that is all about converting said ships is a recipe for the assured destruction of everybody. -5 points for both.

Dark Spire: Also another one of those factions that start slow but quickly ramp up to obliterate everybody. These are the equivalent of a mk3 nuke, but as a faction. -4 for both.

Devourer Golem: Walking (flying?) death in the shape of a giant sphere. It destroys everything in its path. None survive. -2 for both.

Zenith Trader: Buffs AI and Humanity. Neutral faction, though Humanity(the Player) buys more frequently and buys bigger guns. Point against AI. +3 for Humanity and +2 for AI.

Zenith Golems (Regenerator, Armored, etc): The equivalent of the King Tiger during World War 2. Immensely powerful when used correctly. Huge point against the AI. +3 for humaniy and -2 for AI.

The Macrophage: This just got put in for the upcoming .744 patch notes, but I'm sure they'll have as much impact as the Marauders as time goes on. Untested.

Astro Trains: Also got put in for the upcoming .744 patch notes, but I'll be basing this argument on the ones from AIWC. These could be a boon for the AI if the right train comes along, but it's kinda circumstantial. Medium to high effect on galaxy in favor of AI. +3 for AI. -3 for Humanity.
    This tallies up to -7 for Humanity and -16 for the AI. Plus the Spire are coming back as a stretch goal as well as the Devourer's "cousin" the Nemesis and Interplanetary guns. This goes back to the original question by asking: How the hell did the AI conquer the galaxy with all these factions running amok? Yeah, the AI has the Dark Spire disintegrator or whatever, but that's one out of about 10-11 factions that it's got somewhat control over, as that is only on the AI home planet.
    Countless sectors of space must have been lost to these factions. (I'm typing this on my phone, so I will fix this up at a reasonable hour). To add on to all of this, the AI is fighting in another galaxy against whatever is out there and I'm pretty sure the "mysterious powerful final boss faction person ships thing" that the AI is fighting has not been revealed yet. Is this game about Humanity rising from the ashes or about the AI getting absolutely ****ed in the playable galaxy?

Note: I didn't talk about AI Risk Analyzers because they don't really do anything other than drive up AIP. This calls for more attention to the galaxy by the AI, but would probably still get owned by the factions.
Note 2: I also don't count whatever mods that will inevitably be made in this argument.
Note 3: I realize I should have put an intensity that each faction should be, so I'll put the AI at 7 and the other factions at 4, as per default AIWC.
Note 4: Added Astro Trains.
Private Alpha Discussion / Re: Questions about minor factions
« Last post by BadgerBadger on May 11, 2018, 08:51:00 PM »
Sounds convincing to me. Next release will have hostile-to-all marauders.
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