Author Topic: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.  (Read 3786 times)

Offline zharmad

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #15 on: September 09, 2016, 10:45:15 AM »
There's an interesting idea, as long as any single ammo-based immunity makes it through to 1.0, it may then be possible to recreate protector starships.
Making and Distributing mod will be another matter - but we've got websites for that.

Offline Tridus

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #16 on: September 09, 2016, 10:58:41 AM »
There's an interesting idea, as long as any single ammo-based immunity makes it through to 1.0, it may then be possible to recreate protector starships.

Hopefully! I'll be all over that.

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Making and Distributing mod will be another matter - but we've got websites for that.

The sad thing is that it doesn't have to be a problem. Steam Workshop solved that. Loading mods into XCOM 2 and Cities: Skylines is a breeze. They're discoverable, rateable, they auto-patch themselves when the mod creator posts an update after a new game version breaks it, the whole nine yards. (Skylines even lets you publish asset changes like new buildings directly from the editor, it's simple as pie.)

Will be a shame if we get something external and clunky instead.

Offline Pumpkin

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #17 on: September 09, 2016, 11:09:07 AM »
I'm emotionally involved with several of these retired mechanisms (sniper, swallowing, etc) but I recognize the game balance and clarity would be better without them.

And... no more ammo immunities! Yes!

However I'm growing more and more worried about "candy techs". And short warning: I will use the word "upgrade" instead of "candy tech" from now on.

I would like to see more "ship personality" by lowering the number of upgrades one ship has access to. But it seems many units have access to a common ground of defensive upgrades (Hardening, Repulsors, Regeneration, Jacketing, Armor) and only a few more. So I would support the establishment of a design rule that would allow every ships to have these mostly-non-twisting upgrades available, and save really-twisting ones (cloaking, FField-ignore, teleportation, reclamation, vampirism, etc) for crafting what I name "unit personality".

A few examples. The Raptors are unique because they start with an insane speed and have access to the rare cloaking upgrade. The possibility for a teleport battlestation to acquire the rare leech ability (to become a teleporting leech) would be part of its "personality" (because few can).

However, I'm afraid the common ground of defensive upgrades would confuse new players and clutter the interface. I would like to see a distinction (maybe just graphic) between "defensive" and "twisting" upgrades. For example, just by looking at the Raptor stats (to keep that example), a player could quickly see "this one has the usual protection upgrades plus cloaking and engine bore." (instead of "Cloaking, Hardening, Regeneration, Jacketing, Armor, Piercing, Engine Bore", which is harder to mentally untangle).

Also, I really dislike most of the current names and prefixes of the upgrades. I hope they are only working names.
Please rename "engine bore" as "engine damage" for the upgrade itself and use "Spider" for the prefix.
Repulsors -> immunity to "capture" -> immunity to tractors and mines (aka Raider perks). That is highly confusing. I have no name to suggest right now, but please tell me you'll change it.
Suggestion: speed x2 upgrade; prefix "swift" or something.

I like the old perk names and prefixes: "spider" for engine damage, "leech" for reclamation, "widow" for tractor beams, "arachnid" for starship targetting, etc. I hope to see them used in AIW2, and to see new thematic prefixes, like (totally improvised suggestions subject to discussion) "acidic" for armor damage, "blinker" for teleportation, "tesla" for electric AoE, etc.

About the "Interference" immunity (aka "Starship cocktail")...
So you replaced my "size" idea with a handle name for the starship cocktail of immunities. Why not. I'm sad, but why not. So no more size-based targeting? No more OMD, Arachnid GPosts, disassemblers and Artillery Golems? Well, okay. I won't regret them specifically.
Interferences = tractor, paralysis, EMP, translocation, reclamation, etc. I think this is dangerously unclear. Where will the game tell what is the "interference" perk? Where will it list these immunities?
My "size" idea, while having different issues, had the advantage of letting each perk define to what it apply (or not). The definition of a tractor beam, for example, would say "target only small units". A big unit would have only to say "I am big" (instead of "I am immune to tractors and reclamation and translocation and paralysis and etc").
That's nitpicking, but I personally prefer the "size" approach. If everybody prefer the "interferences" handle for the cocktail of immunities, I'll shut my mouth.


Anyway, overall, I really pleased with the development of the design document. That's a hell of an emotional travel, but the net result for the game is truly positive, I believe.
Keep it up!


EDIT:
I really like how you streamlined the perks. Regeneration for instance, having a general "2 minutes for full regen" instead of per-unit-type times and rates.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2016, 11:18:36 AM by Pumpkin »
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Offline kasnavada

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #18 on: September 09, 2016, 11:29:50 AM »
However, I'm afraid the common ground of defensive upgrades would confuse new players and clutter the interface. I would like to see a distinction (maybe just graphic) between "defensive" and "twisting" upgrades. For example, just by looking at the Raptor stats (to keep that example), a player could quickly see "this one has the usual protection upgrades plus cloaking and engine bore." (instead of "Cloaking, Hardening, Regeneration, Jacketing, Armor, Piercing, Engine Bore", which is harder to mentally untangle).

This is an excellent point.

Also, would it be possible to take multiple counts of "stat" upgrades ?


Also, I really dislike most of the current names and prefixes of the upgrades. I hope they are only working names.

I looked at what that does... jacketing. In every other game there is that I know of, or science fiction book, or board game, it's called "shield". That's how it's called everywhere. Litteraly. Jacketing sounds like clothes. I've left myself to hours to guess, and litterally have no idea that would be shields.

There is no reason, if that's it, to be afraid players wouldn't make a distinction between forcefields (immobile, blocks movements) and shields (regenerating portion of hit points).
« Last Edit: September 09, 2016, 11:34:34 AM by kasnavada »

Offline skrutsch

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #19 on: September 09, 2016, 11:30:23 AM »
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Minelayer (Specialist Raider)
Visits your planets and flies around erratically, leaving invisible minefields for you.

Player-built mines are common, defensive weapons placed logically and are visible to the player.
AI "mines" are far from common, non-defensive weapons placed erratically and are invisible to the player.

Using the same name for both concepts is confusing.  May I suggest "booby traps" or "snares" for the AI version?  I want to be able to build "snare sweepers"  :)

Also, I think that AI booby traps/snares should do something more interesting than just cause damage, to incentivize the player to not just ignore them.  Maybe paralyze/heavily damage engines ("snare")?  Maybe instakill the strongest ship on the planet?  EMP pulse?  Launch a Nuke MK III??  Burn down your apartment???


Offline skrutsch

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #20 on: September 09, 2016, 11:50:43 AM »
Quote
Galaxy Map Types
All of those from AI War Classic are gone.  Instead there are new types, and new solar system interior types as well.  The reason for this shift is the addition of solar systems causing a pretty fundamental shift in what galaxy maps are like.  The actual variety you can experience in the new game should be higher than in the old game.

Zharmad observed the fundamental shift -- all solar system maps are like AIW Classic map type Clusters.  That observation and a couple pieces of scrap paper helped me a lot to visualize what the new galaxy maps will be like.

Please excuse my rambling and general lack of clue, but I just wanted to note that the bold statement would be clearer if it mentioned the extra variety comes from the new planet types and the importance of solar systems... or something like that.  ???



Offline skrutsch

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #21 on: September 09, 2016, 12:26:09 PM »
I looked at what that does... jacketing. In every other game there is that I know of, or science fiction book, or board game, it's called "shield". That's how it's called everywhere.

+1, maybe +2 :)

Offline Tridus

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #22 on: September 09, 2016, 12:41:31 PM »
I would like to see more "ship personality" by lowering the number of upgrades one ship has access to. But it seems many units have access to a common ground of defensive upgrades (Hardening, Repulsors, Regeneration, Jacketing, Armor) and only a few more. So I would support the establishment of a design rule that would allow every ships to have these mostly-non-twisting upgrades available, and save really-twisting ones (cloaking, FField-ignore, teleportation, reclamation, vampirism, etc) for crafting what I name "unit personality".

A few examples. The Raptors are unique because they start with an insane speed and have access to the rare cloaking upgrade. The possibility for a teleport battlestation to acquire the rare leech ability (to become a teleporting leech) would be part of its "personality" (because few can).

However, I'm afraid the common ground of defensive upgrades would confuse new players and clutter the interface. I would like to see a distinction (maybe just graphic) between "defensive" and "twisting" upgrades. For example, just by looking at the Raptor stats (to keep that example), a player could quickly see "this one has the usual protection upgrades plus cloaking and engine bore." (instead of "Cloaking, Hardening, Regeneration, Jacketing, Armor, Piercing, Engine Bore", which is harder to mentally untangle).

Makes sense. Getting the balance of how many should get it right would be tricky, but it does beat "everything".

Quote
Also, I really dislike most of the current names and prefixes of the upgrades. I hope they are only working names.
Please rename "engine bore" as "engine damage" for the upgrade itself and use "Spider" for the prefix.
Repulsors -> immunity to "capture" -> immunity to tractors and mines (aka Raider perks). That is highly confusing. I have no name to suggest right now, but please tell me you'll change it.
Suggestion: speed x2 upgrade; prefix "swift" or something.

I like the old perk names and prefixes: "spider" for engine damage, "leech" for reclamation, "widow" for tractor beams, "arachnid" for starship targetting, etc. I hope to see them used in AIW2, and to see new thematic prefixes, like (totally improvised suggestions subject to discussion) "acidic" for armor damage, "blinker" for teleportation, "tesla" for electric AoE, etc.

Agreed. Fortunately, names are easily changed during development.

Quote
About the "Interference" immunity (aka "Starship cocktail")...
So you replaced my "size" idea with a handle name for the starship cocktail of immunities. Why not. I'm sad, but why not. So no more size-based targeting? No more OMD, Arachnid GPosts, disassemblers and Artillery Golems? Well, okay. I won't regret them specifically.
Interferences = tractor, paralysis, EMP, translocation, reclamation, etc. I think this is dangerously unclear. Where will the game tell what is the "interference" perk? Where will it list these immunities?
My "size" idea, while having different issues, had the advantage of letting each perk define to what it apply (or not). The definition of a tractor beam, for example, would say "target only small units". A big unit would have only to say "I am big" (instead of "I am immune to tractors and reclamation and translocation and paralysis and etc").
That's nitpicking, but I personally prefer the "size" approach. If everybody prefer the "interferences" handle for the cocktail of immunities, I'll shut my mouth.

I guess for this, it matters how it scales as the game grows. As more things are added, size can get clunky. What if something is big but we don't want it to behave the same way as other "big" things? Is it not "big" now? In a case like that, it's easier to invent a new tag name for it (like: Imperial Spire Starship) that has different rules than "Starship", even if it's the same size as other big things. Otherwise, we have things that are the same size but some are "big" and some are not, which is weird.

Offline Tridus

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #23 on: September 09, 2016, 12:46:34 PM »
I looked at what that does... jacketing. In every other game there is that I know of, or science fiction book, or board game, it's called "shield". That's how it's called everywhere. Litteraly. Jacketing sounds like clothes. I've left myself to hours to guess, and litterally have no idea that would be shields.

There is no reason, if that's it, to be afraid players wouldn't make a distinction between forcefields (immobile, blocks movements) and shields (regenerating portion of hit points).

Seconded or thirded or whatever. "Jacketing" in common terminlogy is putting a jacket on a toddler. :P

In a combat sense, what actually came to mind was a "full metal jacket", which is a bullet that's core is jacketed in a harder metal to aid in feeding lots of ammunition quickly (and as a side effect, being more likely to penetrate a target completely and carry on through it, rather than deforming and stopping in the target).

That it's somehow a *shield* never occurred to me until I read this thread.

Offline x4000

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #24 on: September 09, 2016, 12:48:25 PM »
Regarding the names of some of the abilities, if you're not going to look up what those do I can't really help. ;)  None of those names are final right now anyway, so I'd rather not debate semantics on that stuff right now.  There's lots of terminology that one has to learn in order to play this game, and plenty of things you only understand because you played classic.  Jacketing wasn't in classic, so of course you don't know what that is from the name alone. ;)

One "new" variant of the attack mechanics that I didn't manage to sneak in time would be a version of cutting through defenses. Rather then acting as armor rotters do by reducing the armor directly, the unit would cumulatively do more damage as the unit is attacked. This mechanic would be shared by other ships by that mechanic (so golems can't do double damage, but perhaps specialized swarms can). It give a potential counter to swammers against larger craft.

This sounds promising, but can you elaborate on this?  I don't fully follow it.

More immunities gone, I wish we had. Immunities, as a game mechanic, I hate.

There was a difference between "ships that can't shoot at anything because of piles of immunities and couter turrets", and the Protector Starship, which was an awesome fleet defense unit. Don't expect me to cheer when my favorite ship is unceremoniously yanked out of the game.
I can understand losing your favorite ships... I was very fond of the plane myself. Yet I'm glad it's gone. It was causing more issues than helping in anything.

I'm sorry to see that folks are upset by the removal of some of the counter-whatever stuff, and some of those immunities.  Bear in mind that when it comes to something like the protector starship, I'm totally down with re-implementing that in a more clear, generally-palatable fashion.  That said, things that in general provide perfect protection are... dangerous, to say the least.  So easy to be OP.  The role of a starship that travels with ships and makes them safer in some fashion when normally they'd be at great risk is very cool, but making them all completely immune to a lot of types of shots is a dangerous thing, and just using a forcefield is boring.  Something more in the middle of that, perhaps.

Maybe it does something like halve all damage that hits any ships in its range, and whenever a ship would die from a shot there's a 75% chance it will just stick at 1HP instead.  That would be something quite exciting and fresh, and get at the same sort of idea, but without perfect immunity and without just being forcefields by a different name.  Some of the old mechanics that are dying I'm really cool with reviving in an alternative form that would hopefully be more clear and more fun and more balanced.

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Terminology complaints

I'm working on various things with that, based on suggestions here.  Bear in mind it's pretty temporary right now.

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Separating out basic upgrades on ships versus the extra-neat ones
Yep, I'll do that.  Good idea, that was becoming a mess.

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Worry about ships becoming overly generic via upgrades
One way or another, we won't let that happen.  Most of the upgrades that seem generic-ish are ones that are extremely basic.  I've started on the base game of AI War and am working my way down, so naturally there's the largest amount of overlap thus far.

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Reclamation immunity
Oops!  That was missing and has been added back.  Still, it was over-used previously and I want to make that not the case.

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Steam workshop
That all depends on the steamworks.net quality for things like that.  So I have no idea.

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Anything else I missed?
It may be good to break out certain discussions into their own general groups.  Not on every ship, but we have like 5 general conversations in this one thread and so I'm sure I missed some stuff.  Immunities stuff, reclamation stuff, upgrades, naming stuff, and so on.

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jacketing
Hey, come on, cut me some slack.  I was thinking about those from All You Need Is Kill (I can't recall if they also called them that in Edge of Tomorrow, which is based on that).  But also the sheaths around bullets themselves (shell casings for large shells... isn't that right, or am I remembering wrong?).  Anyway, I thought it was neat.  Either way, it's changing.
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Offline x4000

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #25 on: September 09, 2016, 01:05:58 PM »
More comments:

1. I've updated the document to now have jacketing gone, and shielding in.

2. The techs are now broken out into basic and specialized on each ship type, and will have some colorization or whatever in the tech list in game.

3. The specialization of techs is a lot better now.  It was indeed overly-broad before.

4. In absolutely no way will I consider adding prefixes like "spider" and whatnot.  That would be an insanely unclear system to anyone except hardcore AI War players.  I have 20,000 hours in the game and yet it's been 3 years since I put time into it and I wouldn't know what that meant.  Thematic is great, but clarity is better.  I think the Binding of Isaac was a great example of that being handled horribly, and people seemed to appreciate what we did with Starward Rogue instead.  It's even something people complain about with Java, and why we like C# better even though they are pretty similar.  Tell me: what do "java beans" do?  I keep learning that and forgetting, and it's just one example with that language.

5. The "starship cocktail" is clearer since it doesn't have a million pieces of immunity listed all over the place.  You learn what it means once, and then you know.  I anticipate having two things to help with that: a) a way in the game in general to "freeze a tooltip" so that you can then hover over it and get tooltips on the tooltip (basically like the Civolopedia but without having to search into it); and possibly a way to "expand tooltip" via a different hotkey that translates the abbreviated info into the "oh my eyes are bleeding" info dump style.
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Offline Tridus

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #26 on: September 09, 2016, 01:07:28 PM »
I'm sorry to see that folks are upset by the removal of some of the counter-whatever stuff, and some of those immunities.  Bear in mind that when it comes to something like the protector starship, I'm totally down with re-implementing that in a more clear, generally-palatable fashion.  That said, things that in general provide perfect protection are... dangerous, to say the least.  So easy to be OP.  The role of a starship that travels with ships and makes them safer in some fashion when normally they'd be at great risk is very cool, but making them all completely immune to a lot of types of shots is a dangerous thing, and just using a forcefield is boring.  Something more in the middle of that, perhaps.

Oh good. :) It's a great idea for a ship, hopefully it's back in some form.

To be fair to it though, the Protector Starship *never* granted immunity. It mounted modules, and each module could counter a certain amount of damage from a certain type of shot. So, the pair of mk I's you got initially could stop X damage from two of the four options of shot types, or stop 2X of one of them. Each mk could mount an extra module, so if you went all the way up to IV, you could stop a whole lot of everything or provide near immunity to one thing, but they could still be overwhelmed in terms of incoming damage.

Of course, that time I loaded them all up with energy counter and fought a mk III Fortress with only fighters/missile frigates and didn't lose any might have looked like immunity. ;) (But in that case, the ship was doing *nothing* against any other type of shot. So even then there's an opportunity cost for doing that.)

It was really a "counter DPS up to the ship's limit" ship, rather than a "grant immunity" ship. That's what made it cool, honestly. A "stick this here and now you're immune to X" ship is pretty lame in comparison.

Quote
Maybe it does something like halve all damage that hits any ships in its range, and whenever a ship would die from a shot there's a 75% chance it will just stick at 1HP instead.  That would be something quite exciting and fresh, and get at the same sort of idea, but without perfect immunity and without just being forcefields by a different name.  Some of the old mechanics that are dying I'm really cool with reviving in an alternative form that would hopefully be more clear and more fun and more balanced.

That'd be cool, yeah. Half is quite a huge damage reduction though, ulness that's on the mk V variant. There's lots of room to sort out exactly how it works later, but thematically that's a good idea.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2016, 01:16:27 PM by Tridus »

Offline x4000

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #27 on: September 09, 2016, 01:22:06 PM »
These are now in under perks, though not assigned to any ships yet:

Area Protection [X]%
New. Reduces all damage that hits any ships in its range (except itself) by that percentage, so area protection 60% makes all incoming damage 60% weaker.
Life Roulette [X]%
New. Can be ranged (affecting all ships in range except itself), or applied to itself.
Whenever an affected ship would die from a shot there's an [X]% chance it will just stick at 1HP instead.


Oh good. :) It's a great idea for a ship, hopefully it's back in some form.

To be fair to it though, the Protector Starship *never* granted immunity. It mounted modules, and each module could counter a certain amount of damage from a certain type of shot. So, the pair of mk I's you got initially could stop X damage from two of the four options of shot types, or stop 2X of one of them. Each mk could mount an extra module, so if you went all the way up to IV, you could stop a whole lot of everything or provide near immunity to one thing, but they could still be overwhelmed in terms of incoming damage.

Of course, that time I loaded them all up with energy counter and fought a mk III Fortress with only fighters/missile frigates and didn't lose any might have looked like immunity. ;) (But in that case, the ship was doing *nothing* against any other type of shot. So even then there's an opportunity cost for doing that.)

It was really a "counter DPS up to the ship's limit" ship, rather than a "grant immunity" ship. That's what made it cool, honestly. A "stick this here and now you're immune to X" ship is pretty lame in comparison.

Clearly I'm missing the boat on this one.  Any extra clarity on how this work would be good.  I'd be tempted to make it for all damage that is incoming, not just specific types, but I dunno.  I could see a new "Area Damage Prevention [X numeric]" mechanic that can be applied to an area like the area protection above does.

But what I'm not clear on is:
1. How does it prevent damage: is it basically a FIFO thing? (first in, first out)?
2. Is that something that's resetting every clock second, or every tick is that reducing the "amount I've done lately" by a fixed amount?

You may not know the answers on those, and I can ping Keith.  But in practice, I imagine you have an idea of in general what it was doing since it's a favorite of yours, and I was curious from that perspective what it appeared to be doing.
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Offline kasnavada

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #28 on: September 09, 2016, 01:25:43 PM »
Area Protection [X]%
New. Reduces all damage that hits any ships in its range (except itself) by that percentage, so area protection 60% makes all incoming damage 60% weaker.

This, I like. Much better than the counter mechanic of before, that made you invicible against threats "up to a certain point", or immunities.

Hey, come on, cut me some slack.  I was thinking about those from All You Need Is Kill (I can't recall if they also called them that in Edge of Tomorrow, which is based on that).  But also the sheaths around bullets themselves (shell casings for large shells... isn't that right, or am I remembering wrong?).  Anyway, I thought it was neat.  Either way, it's changing.

Errr. Sorry if my tone or remarks offended you, I was more "puzzled" at finding out what it was than trying to be mean.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2016, 01:27:34 PM by kasnavada »

Offline Cinth

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Re: I'm going through all the ship mechanics and ships today.
« Reply #29 on: September 09, 2016, 01:27:40 PM »
IIRC Protector modules worked fifo and are salvo based, so many intercepted shots per time period.
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