Author Topic: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation  (Read 16762 times)

Offline Conir

  • Newbie Mark II
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #15 on: October 31, 2013, 06:17:56 PM »
What about randomness.
Is the game setup the same everytime you start it or will it be completly different after every playthrough?

<<
Different strategies that you choose to employ are heavily influenced by the situation of the planets.  During some games, the situation on planets will be so poor for the various races that they are a lot more aggressive out of necessity.  Other times the most warlike races may be too distracted by internal war to bother with their neighbors.  Other times you may find that the solar system is pretty peaceable because everyone has resource-rich planets, and thus your biggest threats are from pirates and anti-federation insurgents.
<<

Offline keith.lamothe

  • Arcen Games Staff
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 19,506
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #16 on: October 31, 2013, 06:26:02 PM »
There's quite a bit of randomization :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games? Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline Kingpin23

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 66
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #17 on: October 31, 2013, 06:36:53 PM »
There's quite a bit of randomization :)

Thats great.
I like games with a lot of replay value.
Games like Bionic Dues FTL and Spelunky.

Offline YoukaiCountry

  • Newbie Mark III
  • *
  • Posts: 49
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #18 on: October 31, 2013, 06:44:29 PM »
Wow, I love games with simulated as opposed to scripted worlds. There just aren't enough of them.
Very much looking forward to it!

Offline Cyborg

  • Master Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,934
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #19 on: October 31, 2013, 08:30:15 PM »
How do you lose? Or put in another way, how do gamers who like to be rewarded by their skill level get their payoff in this kind of game?
Kahuna strategy guide:
http://www.arcengames.com/forums/index.php/topic,13369.0.html

Suggestions, bugs? Don't be lazy, give back:
http://www.arcengames.com/mantisbt/

Planetcracker. Believe it.

The stigma of hunger. http://wayw.re/Vi12BK

Offline Teal_Blue

  • Hero Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 935
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #20 on: October 31, 2013, 11:51:08 PM »
How do you lose? Or put in another way, how do gamers who like to be rewarded by their skill level get their payoff in this kind of game?

Did Chris say that we are trying to unite the planets into the Federation and therefor peace?

My guess is
1.  We may only have a set length of time to do that.

Or,

2. If the game continues until each planet had makes a yes or no decision, giving us an end point.
(Which may mean the game length is variable, from perhaps 20-30 minutes to a couple of hours, depending
on how long it takes me to convince the planets one way or the other.

Where at which point we either win, or lose.
Then go on to another game and different set of situations to face.  :)

-Teal

« Last Edit: October 31, 2013, 11:56:16 PM by Teal_Blue »

Offline Coppermantis

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,212
  • Avenger? I hardly know 'er!
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2013, 01:22:11 AM »
It seems like having one's fleet destroyed would also be a lose condition.
I can already tell this is going to be a roller coaster ride of disappointment.

Offline Histidine

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 581
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2013, 01:35:23 AM »
  • The simulation and our ability to influence it sounds rather like Starsector. I think I'm going to like this.
  • Eight different races developing independently in the same solar system strikes me as rather unlikely :P
  • Presumably the Federation is the brainchild of whichever of the eight races were able to develop space capability before the others? Or is some outside third party involved in this?

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,276
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #23 on: November 01, 2013, 09:22:32 AM »
Oh, they are actually from this system, and there's a story with it.  You get to pick which race you are from at the start of the game.  You don't represent the race, that's just what the race is called.  And there's a different hero name for each race, so basically a different character for each one.

Are there game mechanic differences for each Origin-Race?  Or is it solely cosmetic?

There are intended to be some differences, but as yet I don't have much of an idea what those will actually be, heh.  But each of your flagships will be at least subtly different depending on the race, so there is that.  This is one of those areas we're still working on.

What about randomness.
Is the game setup the same everytime you start it or will it be completly different after every playthrough?

The amount of randomness is pretty extreme, even from the start, yes.  It's always the same 8 races, but there are something like 100 places planets might be. 

There are four planetary zones (Inner System, Habitable Zone, Outer System, and Ice Belt).  There is also an asteroid belt after the asteroid belt, but the only thing in there is pirates, and later space installations that the planets build.  But they aren't there at the start.  Anyway, within those four zones for planets, there are 11 classes of planets: Terrestrial, Transition Desert, Over-Industrialized, Ice Dwarf, Dense Turbulent, Heliosal Desert, Iron Silicate, Molten, Hypertonic Gas Giant, Gauss Gas Giant, and Equatorial Ring.

The planets themselves have various characteristics that are different each game, such as a range of moons, surface area in million sq km, and resource abundances.  All of those things vary in a plausibly-realistic range within each planet type, all of which are based on types of planets (or aspects of planets) found in our own solar system.  Obviously in some places such as with resources we had to take some creative license, but in some of those cases it's assumed that moons are involved in the resource availability.

Anyhow.  That's the planets.  The races themselves then have some randomized attributes that vary per race, and which race is one what kind of planet is different every time.  Also how many of each kind of planet, and even which kinds of planets there are at all, varies each time, I should mention.  The distance of each race from the race you choose determines how quickly they will naturally become spacefaring (since they are spying on you with probes and using that to accelerate their own jump into space), and so that can play into how the early-mid game goes.  Of course, that gets modified by the general compatibility of a race with whatever planet type they are on.

Races also have delayed effects from their starting circumstances, of course.  If you have a rapid-growth race (or a race that requires a lower population density) on a small planet that they are compatible with, then they will quickly hit their "equilibrium" population, and then... something happens.  Depending on the race it could be internal war, just happily clamping to equilibrium, or going on a war of aggression against some other race depending on race relations.

Oh yeah, and the attitudes of each race toward each other race is randomized at the start.  Each race has a certain number of peers that they will "generally like" and the remainder they "generally dislike," and what exactly those quoted things mean fall into a numeric range per race.  Some are naturally friendly but really hate whoever they hate, some are cool to everyone, some hate almost everyone but buddy up with someone else.  Which specific races those are, and the exact values, are randomized from the start.  And then of course those act as the starting values from which things change from then onwards in the game, it's not like it stays there all that long.

So... yeah.  Off the top of my head, those are the elements that vary between solar systems at the start of the game. :)

How do you lose? Or put in another way, how do gamers who like to be rewarded by their skill level get their payoff in this kind of game?

We are still experimenting with this, but right now it when you, personally, die.  You live in your flagship, and if that blows up you are dead.  You can fight using your flagship, but you may wish not to because of the risk.  The battles are quick and brutal.  As to the larger solar system, it could be consumed in fire and war and you wouldn't lose until the assassins of the reigning race finally finish you off.  Which likely would not be long.

Generally speaking, most of the conditions that seem fail-y are things that are likely to result in your death anyhow, so probably additional conditions are not needed.  In terms of "winning well," there are probably a variety of things that we can set up for that.  Winning with no races dead, for instance, or winning with only one race alive.  Winning with only a fleet of size X or technology Y or whatever.

My guess is
1.  We may only have a set length of time to do that.

There are no actual time limits, but games are unlikely to go overlong as things would generally get into the area of "you die hilariously" if you dawdle endlessly.  But it's an organic thing, so if you can maintain a solar system with no federation for 100 hours or something... well, the game will just keep on trucking.  Honestly I don't know how long a single game will take yet, but we're hoping it will be something like 3-5 hours most times.  Much shorter than AI War, and intense the whole time.

  • The simulation and our ability to influence it sounds rather like Starsector. I think I'm going to like this.
  • Eight different races developing independently in the same solar system strikes me as rather unlikely :P
  • Presumably the Federation is the brainchild of whichever of the eight races were able to develop space capability before the others? Or is some outside third party involved in this?

The first race to become starfaring is the race you choose to be.  The idea of the federation is yours, but the backstory differs depending on which race that is.  Also: everything is unlikely until it happens. ;)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline keith.lamothe

  • Arcen Games Staff
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 19,506
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #24 on: November 01, 2013, 09:59:23 AM »
Also: everything is unlikely until it happens. ;)
But for every incredibly-unlikely thing that just happened, there's usually a much more plausible explanation that something far more likely is what actually occurred ;)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games? Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,276
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #25 on: November 01, 2013, 10:01:31 AM »
Well, that too. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline chemical_art

  • Core Member Mark IV
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,952
  • Fabulous
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #26 on: November 01, 2013, 11:45:39 AM »

There are intended to be some differences, but as yet I don't have much of an idea what those will actually be, heh.  But each of your flagships will be at least subtly different depending on the race, so there is that.  This is one of those areas we're still working on.

Have you considered having the player influence some of the traits of the race either during early game or before the game starts? It doesn't have to be total control like making races in other 4X's, but maybe it can. Anyway, it could help give a degree of stability to the otherwise random galaxy. Could be interesting either making a weak race that is easy to bring into the federation, or a strong race the player has to intentionally blunt most of the game.

Another idea is the have the reverse occur: starter race influences the player's abilities. So a warlike race has the player have stronger fleet, diplomatic race gives greater diplomacy, etc. This path could be taken to the extreme similar to pilots in BD.
Life is short. Have fun.

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,276
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #27 on: November 01, 2013, 02:12:02 PM »
Yeah, having the races impact player abilities is basically what I've been thinking -- exactly so.  Some are better at negotiating or fighting, etc.  You also have easier relations with your own race, so if you pick a race that is normally hard to bring into the federation then that is good for you in some ways... but that doesn't stop them from wars of aggression against non-federation folks, so that can be an issue.  Etc.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline madcow

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,151
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #28 on: November 01, 2013, 03:16:56 PM »
This sounds cool! While I'm sure the gameplay is completely different, the concept sounds remarkably close to Drox Operative.  Except without the incredible game-killing tedium that it had in exploration/getting around, but the core concept of it was great and could be quite nice here as a different styled game.


Offline keith.lamothe

  • Arcen Games Staff
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 19,506
Re: Preview: Simulations In The Last Federation
« Reply #29 on: November 01, 2013, 03:19:52 PM »
This sounds cool! While I'm sure the gameplay is completely different, the concept sounds remarkably close to Drox Operative.  Except without the incredible game-killing tedium that it had in exploration/getting around, but the core concept of it was great and could be quite nice here as a different styled game.
Yea, the conceptual similarity is definitely there.  The gameplay could hardly be more different, though :)

Drox is one of my favorite games, but we are doing something rather distant from that.  Closer to some other games in some ways, we'll see.
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games? Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!