Author Topic: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?  (Read 1835 times)

Offline Panopticon

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2013, 01:45:10 PM »
Food is feeling about right to me at the moment. Scrap numbers feel a bit off. Clinics are pretty important and the first one you build is pretty much guaranteed an early demise. So that means most players are going to be building a second clinic as soon as possible, as well as needing to build a farm. That's pretty much all of your scrap right there, so unless you luck out and find a few factories, skelebot tower ruins etc and can keep them manned long enough there's a lot of barrel scraping happening. It also has the effect of stopping me from taking advantage of fortifications because I need every single iota to keep farms and clinics running.

I don't mind a scrap shortage being an early game hump to get over, that'd be thematic and an interesting opening game problem. The difficulty of keeping scrap production up, especially with the Boss' new area denial abilities, combined with the high cost of essential buildings seems to create a lot of early game close outs for me.

Offline khadgar

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #16 on: February 05, 2013, 12:56:15 AM »
The strategic game seems way too hard, or maybe I just had a string of bad luck. I don't consider myself bad at these type of things, but I just got done losing 4 consecutive games on Queen, Default, Less-than-Default, and then Easiest, all to running out of food, which made my morale hit 0, which made all my survivors die the next turn.

Just to clarify, having food shortages gives a -10 morale penalty per survivor without food, so if this happens you're bound to end up at negative morale, which is game over due to all the tiles being 200% difficulty, even the farm tile you were trying to work to fix it. I'm not sure if the negative morale fixes itself if you get food again, but it wouldn't matter because you can't get food anyway.

As I didn't really get to play too much, I can't make suggestions on the balance, but I feel like it's really less strategy more "cross fingers and hope your starting farm isn't next to a tile that can be destroyed and that demonica doesn't attack the starting farm for a few turns and find another farm quick and"
« Last Edit: February 05, 2013, 03:24:03 AM by khadgar »

Offline Psyren

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #17 on: February 05, 2013, 02:09:37 AM »
Gameplay on the strategic front is really good as is, so I cannot think of anything that needs changing on a fundamental level...

Probably the only thing I could suggest are perhaps the ability to find rare, specialist survivors?

For example, a Scavenger class survivor who cannot build, has meh movement/average power BUT he can scavenge on the same turn he/she moves...

Or maybe a Constructor class? Same idea as the above. Crappy power/movement, but can construct on the same turn he/she moves...
I'm probably typing this on my phone. Sorry if it seems short or disjointed :(

Offline Misery

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #18 on: February 05, 2013, 02:51:28 AM »
My issues with it somewhat remain the same:  Food and scrap (mostly food right now, scrap did get better with recent patches) can both be abnormally hard to get at times, and it has more to do with the RNG than anything else.   It seems that most of the time, I see just that one "normal" farm tile, and then dont see another one for quite some time.... which means that I *have* to go find an ocean shallows area IMMEDIATELY.   No choice in that bit whatsoever, it's either do it, or lose completely almost right away.   And if I get a farm up in there, and Demonaica manages somehow to smash it really fast (or if he just sits too close to the shallows area for whatever reason for too long, which can happen depending on what other things were revealed by purifying it)..... that's pretty much a "just restart game" situation, at least at that early point.   And it seems like it's actually pretty common that this happens, with the difficulty not being decided by the strategies involved, but instead by where the RNG puts the "have to get here or you lose" bits.

Scrap can be annoying as well, but it wont outright lose you the game if it gets screwed up early on, and there's more options now when it comes to getting it, as factories can be built in many places, and strategic purifying of abandoned towns keeps the boss from wrecking them too fast.   It's difficult to deal with, but not completely broken.


Beyond that problem, it's all better than ever.    All of the fundamental gameplay aspects here are excellent.    I find this mode very engaging, and when it gets going, it becomes very..... "involved".   There's alot going on, alot of planning and decision-making to do, and it tends to have that feel of desperation that fits with the game's story; there's no way to completely outdo Demonaica for TOO long, so one way or another, you have to find the way to finish him or you do indeed get wiped out in the end.  Which is how it should be.

All of his various spells and such were another good addition, so he's not JUST a mobile wrecking ball;  they also just make him seem that much more like the crazy-powerful supervillain that he is.  None of the spells I've seen him use so far seem at all overpowered, though they definitely serve the purpose of being dangerous, and they increase the value of having clinics available.

The "special" buildings with one-time effects work well with that, as they offer the player some very powerful options of their own, so that Demonaica isnt always the only one with crazy special abilities.   There seems to be alot of strategy in determining both when to purify them, and when to actually USE them as well, since they can have a pretty major impact.

I also really like that there are so very many different tile types, and every single one of them is different;  the variety here really adds alot.

And finally, the different classes combined with the damage & danger-level mechanics, and the shelter system, all work out very well, so that even just moving your guys around requires thinking.... getting from point A to point B is often more complicated than it looks.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #19 on: February 05, 2013, 10:11:13 AM »
Thanks for the feedback, everyone :)  Today I'm going to be rebalancing the food and scrap production in the process of making the calculations more regular and I'll see what I can do about the food thing.

It's really odd, because I've never been in a situation (testing on Rook) that I couldn't get another farm running (either grasslands farmland claimed or ocean shallows covered farm built) by the time my initial stockpile + produce from the first farm rand out.  There was one game where there was a 1 turn gap between the stockpile running out and the second farm beginning to produce, and that slammed my morale down from 100 to 50 or so, but after that it was fine.  I definitely see where having even one more turn's delay could have been game over, though.

One thing I'll do is make the morale range 0 to 100 instead of -100 to 100.  0 is pretty lethal, -100 is just game-over.

Anyway, glad to hear that things in general look good, when you're not starving on turn 8 ;)
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Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #20 on: February 05, 2013, 11:14:26 AM »
Just in:

Quote
* Strategic Food/Scrap rebalance:
** Food/scrap gains from production/scavenging are now determined by only two factors: the type of the tile being worked/scavenged, and the strategic difficulty.
*** The only exception is that controlling a salvage yard doubles scavenging results (as it has for some versions now).
*** The numbers for food production were also adjusted upward in this process.
**** Scavenging in Grassland Groves, in particular, is a lot better than it used to be.
** Since the numbers are much easier to know ahead of time, each region's description lists how much food/scrap can be produced/scavenged per turn there, making it easier to plan ahead.
** Previously if the initial farmland tile was adjacent to any impasses tiles you would effectively lose a turn of food production due to needing to knock those down before working the tile.  Now any such impasse tiles start the game already-destroyed (this doesn't impact old saves since it's such an early-game thing).
** Initial food stockpile from 150/125/100/75/50 => 200/175/150/125/100.
** Initial scrap stockpile from 250/225/200/175/150 => 300/275/250/225/200.
** Food consumption per survivor from last version's 4/6/8/9/10 => 6/8/9/10/11 (on each of the five strategic difficulty levels, respectively, compared to the original 8/9/10/11/12).
** Thanks to Misery, khadgar, and others for feedback leading to these changes.

* Fixed a bug where the Desert Salvage Yard tile wasn't correctly performing its function of doubling scavenging output when controlled (purified + NPC on it).

* Fixed a longstanding bug where the Abandoned Town Warehouses tile wasn't correctly performing its function of reducing food-per-survivor consumption by 1 when purified.

* Fixed some typos in the farm/factory/groves descriptions that still claimed tiles could produce food/scrap on their own each turn.


I'm thinking this will make the early game food crunch less RNG'd and overall somewhat easier, without making it too much easier later on :)
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Offline madcow

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #21 on: February 05, 2013, 11:40:18 AM »
One thing I think worth looking at is the easiest difficulty. I'm sure there's going to be people that don't want to worry about the strategic side at all. It's certainly worh considering the balance of the lowest difficulty for those sorts, I can't say if its at a good place right now for them or not, but I would venture a guess that it might be worth having a nonlinear scale for the very bottom difficulty.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #22 on: February 05, 2013, 11:53:21 AM »
One thing I think worth looking at is the easiest difficulty. I'm sure there's going to be people that don't want to worry about the strategic side at all. It's certainly worh considering the balance of the lowest difficulty for those sorts, I can't say if its at a good place right now for them or not, but I would venture a guess that it might be worth having a nonlinear scale for the very bottom difficulty.
Right; there's a number of factors that are set below-what-linear-would-give for Pawn.  Food-per-survivor being 6 instead of 7, for instance.  Also, the combination of so many linear factors has an exponential effect.  For instance, compared to Rook, Pawn gives the overlord one half the spell power and 50% longer "cooldown" between spells, leading to something like 33% total "effectiveness" of the spells.  And on food each survivor costs 50% less to feed and produces 20% more from production/scavenging, leading to a given amount of "work" towards food having something like 180% the result as it would on the default level.  And all cover rolls have 25% subtracted from the threshold compared to rook (so a roll where you would get hurt on a 40 out 100 roll on rook would only get you hurt on a 15 out of 100 on pawn), and so on.

Maybe whacking each number down a step on Pawn would still be good, but did want to clarify that the overall impact is significantly more than linear, even when it looks linear.
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Offline madcow

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Re: (Devs requesting feedback) How's the strategy game?
« Reply #23 on: February 05, 2013, 02:54:33 PM »
Okay!  Just wanted to make sure it was considered, as chances are the people testing right now aren't the ones likely to be concerned about it ;)

I know I would be awful at testing that side of things!