Author Topic: Advanced Hives?  (Read 3057 times)

Offline TheHive

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Advanced Hives?
« on: May 12, 2016, 07:39:22 PM »
Hi everyone, I'm new to the forums, but I've been playing AI War for a few months now. Recently, I decided to try out advanced hives (having previously beaten 7/7 with normal hives on 4/10). Because I heard they were scary, I gave one of the AIs hybrid hives and advanced hives, both 4/10, and wanted to see what happens.

Its been a bit over 10 hours of in game time, I've destroyed all but two of the hive spawners, but so far, I haven't seen an unusually strong hybrid or anything. I've read that advanced hives build stuff (defenses or more hybrid facilities), recolonize planets, and have other nasty plots. The thing is, I haven't seen them do anything normal hives don't (just accumulate on planets bordering mine until I can destroy them). At one point near the beginning, there were like 20 on one planet, which is the most I've ever seen (or let it reach before besides when I was playing on defender mode).

Still, besides being additional ships on the planet, the hives didn't do anything. Which makes me wonder, what do advanced hives do? I haven't noticed them doing anything. Is this because they don't, or is it all behind the scenes stuff?

Offline chemical_art

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2016, 10:22:22 PM »
My memory is hazy, because "hives" and "hybrids" interact a lot, but I believe if left unchecked the hives will create super starships that cause a lot of headaches if not pre-emptively dealt with.

Or that might just be hybrids...sorry I can't be more specific! [Or are they the same? I need a fresh AIW expansion so I can jump back into this!]
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Offline TheHive

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2016, 06:55:49 AM »
There are Hybrid Hives and Advanced Hybrid Hives (I abbreviated them to Advanced Hives because I misremembered the name).

I guess my question also is "what is preemptively dealing with them?" I've left two of the hive spawners alone for 10+ hours and nothing notable happened. Do there need to be more hive spawners or something for it to have an effect? I destroyed the others in the normal course of the game, taking and neutering planets.

Offline Pumpkin

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2016, 05:50:56 AM »
I think the whole hybrid hive system has a serious balance issue. I remember a game where too much hybrids is unwinnable. Just try intensity 10 on both plots for both AIs, just to see how unplayable the highest bound is. I mean, 10/10 (AI difficulty) is the absolute challenge of AI War and patch note considered a bug the fact it was winnable. But I feel hybrid hives where not often balanced with the rest of the game as it regularly evolve.

Right now I'm rather unfamiliar with them. I feel they're a bit like astro-trains: all pain and no gain. And it would be fine if it would be the "natural" balance for an entirely benefic option, like pirates for resistance fighters, Neinzul preservation wardens for roaming enclaves, champion nemesis for... well, champions, etc. Also, I feel the overall effect of the hybrid hives is not very different from preemption, which just increase the impact of the threat fleet. I wish hybrid hives would have more various and actual impacts on the game. I wish to see neutered planets actively refilled with guard posts, for instance.

Also, I think many of the "nasty" things HHs do are already done by something else. Threatening? Threat fleets do that and preemption improves it. Defense roaming? Speical forces do that and the hunter plot improves it. If the special thing about HHs is rebuilding, I wish to see them have less impact on threat (I would even be okay with no HH threatening at all) and a massive impact on rebuilding. For instance, I want to see them seriously attacking an empty planet minutes after I blew up the OCStation if I don't seriously capture and defend it first. I want to see them dive on neutered planets and do all their best to rebuild GPosts on empty metal spots if I don't actively defend the planets I neutered. That would be THEIR thing, the thing they're the only ones to do, THE thing we love/hate them for and add them for. No threatening or defense roaming; somebody else already do that; somebody else is already balanced for that.

I think I'll spend a good chunk of my mod-time on HHs when AIW2 will be out.
Thanks for reminding me that.
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Offline TheHive

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2016, 08:53:08 AM »
So in short, advanced hybrid hives don't do anything new? They just give more hybrids, but it doesn't build stuff or anything? Thats disappointing. I guess I'll try to beat them for the achievement, but other than that, not use them (like Astrotrains).

Roaming Enclaves in theory are already naturally balanced (provides the AI with them, along with the player, and makes some hostile to both), although the AI and hostile to everyone Enclaves don't survive very long.

Online Toranth

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2016, 09:06:40 AM »
So in short, advanced hybrid hives don't do anything new? They just give more hybrids, but it doesn't build stuff or anything? Thats disappointing. I guess I'll try to beat them for the achievement, but other than that, not use them (like Astrotrains).
Advanced Hybrids can produce the Super-Hybrid unit, which is 10x as strong.
Advanced Hybrids and Dyson Sphere can produce interesting results if both are enabled.  I recommend setting both to at least Level 7 if you do so, although 10 and 10 is the most fun.

Hybrids in general used to be a major threat because they were smarted than the rest of the AI.  They'd concentrate and swarm you when you attacked, or hunt down and find weak spots in your defenses, then attack only there.  Unfortunately, the general strengthening of the AI, especially the Threatfleet and repurposed Special Forces, made those intelligent behaviors a standard part of the game.  So right now, Hybrids are more of a "More Units!" thing.

I love this idea of the Hybrids, and really hope they'll get some dev-love soon.

Offline TheHive

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2016, 10:04:11 AM »
If I play with Hybrids and Advanced Hybrids on 10/10 (with the Dyson Sphere), do you recommend reducing the normal AI difficulty to compensate?

Offline Mánagarmr

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2016, 12:48:41 PM »
It unlocks the level cap for the Hybrids. They can evolve the latest state, allowing them to produce the ultimate über hybrid which will be essentially super golem strength.
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Online Toranth

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2016, 04:48:39 PM »
If I play with Hybrids and Advanced Hybrids on 10/10 (with the Dyson Sphere), do you recommend reducing the normal AI difficulty to compensate?
A little.  I'd select an AI difficulty that you'd expect to win at, then add Hybrids to that.

Offline Pumpkin

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2016, 06:35:19 AM »
Hybrids in general used to be a major threat because they were smarted than the rest of the AI.  They'd concentrate and swarm you when you attacked, or hunt down and find weak spots in your defenses, then attack only there.  Unfortunately, the general strengthening of the AI, especially the Threatfleet and repurposed Special Forces, made those intelligent behaviors a standard part of the game.  So right now, Hybrids are more of a "More Units!" thing.
I didn't play AIW before the current TFleet and SForces. I understand what were hybrids back in the days. A shame they didn't get an interesting revamp when TFleet and SForces turned to be what they are now. I guess that will be piled up for AIW2.

Quote
I love this idea of the Hybrids, and really hope they'll get some dev-love soon.
I love them too. I'll try to come up with some more ideas.

Meanwhile, any comment on the "rebuild only" idea? What would you think of a revamp of that plot that would make hybrids very different, removing a big part (maybe not all) of the threat and roaming defense (that are TFleet and SForces now), and that would vastly improve their focus on rebuilding AI territory, like heavily invading neutered or neutral planets and respawning OCStations (with no AIP-on-death, maybe) and GPosts on metal spots... ? (this sentence started as a question) That would force players to actively hold neutered ground and capture planets fast while defending them with a big fleet. SForces sometimes invade planets that just get captured, but that hybrid plot would be much more automatic and aggressive, like spawning en mass at every adjacent warp gates and contesting the neutral ground.

Another thing: I rather like the hybrid facility hunting. While I dislike cleaning additional and gratuitous threat (I hate preemption just as much), I like scouting the galaxy, spotting hybrid facilities (thanks to the dedicated filter) and send my MkIII-IV raid starships after them, just like data centers or co-processors. The hybrid plot then just becomes to me a sort of Spire Civilian Leaders MF where you can raid at things before it's too late, but where it's morally bad to raid civilians, it's morally "good" to kill hybrid factories. And the "before it's too late" is TFleet for hybrids versus AIP for civilians.

I feel that's two different "side quests" around hybrids, so maybe two different plots: "raid factories before threat-death" for one, and "actively hold neutered ground" for the other. Maybe these two could be mechanically separated, like it's okay to play only with "hybrid rebuilders; neutral ground defense" or only with "threatening hybrids with raid-able factories", and the two being thematically (lore-wise) tied, being different roles for the same AI experimentation on Neinzul.

Any thoughts? Comments?

I need to try Dyson vs Hybrids.
Also, what happen when "Advanced Hybrid" is at 10 when "Hybrid Hives" is at 0?
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Offline Kahuna

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2016, 08:11:47 AM »
I think it would be cool if Hybrids could rebuild and/or build AI Guard Posts and Minefields. Not sure about Warp Gates though.

They could also build things like Planetary Munitions Boosters, Troop Accelerators, Train Stations and stuff like that. What the Hybrid could build would depend on it's level/maturity. So as the Hybrid goes around the galaxy from one Hybrid Facility to another upgrading itself, in addition to becoming more powerful it would also unlock the ability to build more/different/nastier structures.

Hybrids Facilities should be much more rare and higher level Hybrids should be more distinguishable so the player could do specific Hybrid raids to destroy some Facilities and/or high level hybrids.
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Offline TheHive

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2016, 10:09:58 AM »
If you don't have normal Hybrid Hives enabled, but enable Advanced Hybrid Hives, Hybrid Hives gets automatically enabled at 1/10.

I like the idea of building guard posts and such for advanced hybrids (and command stations), although, as Hybrids have a different, feel, I feel like preserving it would be cool. Maybe rebuilding Hybrid Command Stations instead, which don't give AIP on death, but act as a combination of hybrid facilities as well as a command station (probably with some weapon systems). They don't rebuild warp gates, but hybrid command stations add to a "hybrid exo" type thing (spawning from the command station, probably led by super-hybrids), ideally that are smart enough to not always target the home command station, but possibly advanced factories/starship constructors, or isolated worlds which they'd overwhelm, and create a new Hybrid Command Station on (making it harder to make isolated collapsable worlds to transport-hop with).

Online Toranth

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2016, 11:42:59 AM »
If you don't have normal Hybrid Hives enabled, but enable Advanced Hybrid Hives, Hybrid Hives gets automatically enabled at 1/10.
This.  The "Hybrid Hives" level is what determines how many Hybrid Spawners and other Facilities there are in the universe, so it is best to set it to something mid-range or high. 
I played a game once as described, with Advanced Hybrids set to 10 and normal Hybrids not set... and there were very few Hybrids.  I think 4 spawners in the entire galaxy.  I destroyed all of them in the first hour or two, and then spent the rest of the game wondering why the Hybrids didn't seem to be doing anything.

Offline TheHive

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2016, 05:06:18 PM »
What does increasing the intensity of advanced hives do then?

Offline Pumpkin

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Re: Advanced Hives?
« Reply #14 on: May 16, 2016, 07:35:15 AM »
What does increasing the intensity of advanced hives do then?
Unlocking more abilities for hybrids. However, I can't precisely tell which ones.

I like your ideas, my well named fella. Hybrid OCStations, Hybrid waves... I take notes.
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