Author Topic: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?  (Read 1494 times)

Offline x4000

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This section is new: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1IdzU90psGas_3UFe23BLvsGQ8fclec49NmnbHfwkZ8w/edit#heading=h.650dl6lgtqc7

We don't want to go nuts with this obviously, but in some cases we will want to rename things that function too differently from the original game so that people aren't confused by them being named the same but functioning differently.

Plus there are some things that you guys have been after me about for years and years, like "starships."  I've had my head away from this game pretty much since 2013, after having about 20,000 hours of focus on it, so I'm both intimately familiar with this as well as incredibly distant from it.  It's honestly a pretty good balance for being able to do this sort of retrofit, I think, particularly with Keith guiding me and saying "oh yeah I fixed that like 2 years ago" on a bunch of stuff. ;)

We don't need to get into units here, because frankly I think that a lot of the units are likely to change anyway, based on what folks are asking for and the tech stuff.  We have a lot of interesting possibilities here, and some of the old units were named specifically one way because of sprites that I was having to find a use for because they were all I had (EtherJets!).

So that whole process with designing the starting set of ships (before modders get at it) will be a whole other process.  Knowing the core trio's names would be nice, I suppose.  Is is Fighter, Bomber, Corvette?  I've always hated Missile Frigate, because for something so basic it seems like a two-word name is just... not right.

I'm going to be probably checking this thread pretty infrequently in the short term in particular, so please feel free to speak amongst yourselves and I'll be back around within the next week to check on things.  Meanwhile obviously you'll see me in other threads, but I wanted to get this one started so that it could marinate...
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Offline Mad Rubicant

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2016, 08:28:50 PM »
I actually like calling the guard posts on an AI homeworld the "Core" Guard posts, but the basic ones, like "Core Missile Guard Post", should probably go. Perhaps the brutal guard posts (if those stick around) could be called Core Guard Posts? So you get "Core Teuthida Guard Post".

Actually, the homeworld guard posts need something more evocative than Core, and the brutal guard posts need something menacing. Hunter/Killer is menacing. Mothership is menacing.

Offline Cyborg

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2016, 09:11:00 PM »
People really had trouble with the term "core" and Mark V? It seems obvious to me that Mark V > IV.
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Offline Mckloshiv

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2016, 09:32:28 PM »
“scary thing that is not a V” symbol

Like this? :P
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Offline chemical_art

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2016, 12:04:11 AM »
“scary thing that is not a V” symbol

Like this? :P

Would be a great symbol under a unit that is scary but is not under the umbrella of a MK I-V structure.
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Offline Draco18s

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2016, 12:06:18 AM »
Plus there are some things that you guys have been after me about for years and years, like "starships."

Is is Fighter, Bomber, Corvette?  I've always hated Missile Frigate, because for something so basic it seems like a two-word name is just... not right.

Re Starships:
One option is "capital ship" because those things are "the navy's most important warships; and are traditionally much larger than other naval vessels."
But this name popped up:
Battlecruiser: "A battlecruiser, or battle cruiser, was a capital ship built in the first half of the 20th century. They were similar in size, cost, and carried similar armament to battleships, but they generally carried less armour in order to obtain faster speeds."  A definition that I think fits the vast majority of AIW's larger class vessels.

Re Missile Frigate:
"A corvette is a small warship. It is traditionally the smallest class of vessel considered to be a proper (or "rated") warship. The warship class above the corvette is that of the frigate, while the class below was historically that of the sloop-of-war."
So you'd essentially be downgrading the missile frigate in "size." :P
"The modern types of ship below a corvette are coastal patrol craft and fast attack craft."  Oof, I don't think that's going to work.
Unhelpfully I think the correct classification is that of Missile Boat...or just calling it a frigate.

Offline chemical_art

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2016, 12:11:00 AM »
Generally, I have felt in cost the triangle goes bomber > missile >fighter.

Bomber has so much use so that is why it is costly. The value of a fighter is that is cheap. So why is the missile in the middle? Because it is bigger then the two, which is why it fires a unique munition.

This is purely splitting hairs and is purely cosmetic. I do not proclaim this is right for any other reason.
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Offline chemical_art

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2016, 12:15:45 AM »

Re Starships:
One option is "capital ship" because those things are "the navy's most important warships; and are traditionally much larger than other naval vessels."
But this name popped up:
Battlecruiser: "A battlecruiser, or battle cruiser, was a capital ship built in the first half of the 20th century. They were similar in size, cost, and carried similar armament to battleships, but they generally carried less armour in order to obtain faster speeds."  A definition that I think fits the vast majority of AIW's larger class vessels.


I have spent a lot of time learning naval terms. For me in AI wars the most basic of classifications was fleetship < starship < capital ship. Captial ships include golems from the Zenith side and anything larger then a "spire destroyer" on the Spire side. Capital ships in AI wars are units that ignore most conventions of units. They have all the standard features of starships (insta-kill immune, etc) but also possess strengths so strong that only hard counters present a threat if they are not facing similar captial ships (so still weak to bombers on the human side or Mass drivers, etc).
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Offline Draco18s

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #8 on: September 07, 2016, 12:18:43 AM »
That is a fair point, that in AIWC, golems are the capital ship.  However, they are not base game.  They're relics from the Zenith. ;)

So prior to encountering these monstrosities, the human faction would consider their larger ships to be their capital ship class vessels.

That said, feel free to suggest some alternatives.  Personally I favor "Battlecruiser."

Offline chemical_art

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2016, 12:23:23 AM »
For kicks I asked Wikipedia, this is what they suggested:

"William S. Lind, in the book America Can Win (p. 90), defines a capital ship as follows: "These characteristics define a capital ship: if the capital ships are beaten, the navy is beaten. But if the rest of the navy is beaten, the capital ships can still operate. Another characteristic that defines capital ships is that their main opponent is each other."

Which for me is pretty accurate. If you lose your whole fleet but you save your capital ships you are safe. If you have no golems or spire ships then your starships would be this. But if you have access to these craft the starships suddenly are very expendable.

Words are fluid, yo!

But for completionist sake I would still put starships different from capital ships. Zenith craft simply cannot replaced (golems) and spire craft can be replaced but require resources expodentially higher then anything a human can require.

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Offline zharmad

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #10 on: September 07, 2016, 03:59:19 AM »
> Ship assets:
In terms of numbers and size, I strongly advise loose standardisation to some (arbitrary) naval conventions. "Starships" mean nothing, because all player ships are by definition in space. Size/role classifications are easier:
- drones (Spawn of larger units, never independent units.)
- fighters/bombers (large ship-count swarmer. )
- corvettes (Smaller ship-count swarmers. Old missile frigates.* Zenith Medic Frigates, Spire Frigates, etc.)
- Frigates (Dedicated role vessels. Some base starships, Spire Destroyers, 5-cap fleetships like Spire Blade Spawners, Spire railcannons belong here. Smallest unit on which a human commander might conceivably be stationed.)
- Cap-ship (Multi-role vessels. Champions, larger spire fleet, carriers, etc. Lynch-pin ships, e.g. Flagships with multiple weapons that provide planetary bonuses.)
- Super-cap/Battleships (Golems, Motherships)

* Remove assocation with missiles. Base ship-types should never be associated with ammunition. "Missiles" mean very different things in different contexts. Anything like "Ion-cannon Frigates" would be bonus unit-types. )

> Knowledge being called science
As an academic researcher, "No No No." Science is the process, and players will be seeing and using the currency (the object) that is spent. There are points that tick up on the screen: thus, you are accumulating knowledge/data/information/leads/etc. You cannot accumulate the process - ...it's kind of more insulting than having lasers bullets travelling at less than the speed of light.

If knowledge is too wordy, try data. That's all the humans in AIWar Classic were ever capable of, retrieving data cubes/repos/archives from abandoned research stations, and analysing wrecks. Science ships are okay, but as a general rule they conduct research and development, and don't "do/conduct science".
« Last Edit: September 07, 2016, 05:08:46 AM by zharmad »

Offline kasnavada

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2016, 04:16:13 AM »
 ::)

I liked how the X-series did it - basically forget the whole naval mumbo-jumbo and replace them with categories, from M0 to M5 (biggest to smallest). However, it showed limitations for expansions, because new ship categories don't follow the conventions anymore... M6 were between M2 and M3, and M7 were specialized ships.

That said the concept could be taken from that.

Offline zharmad

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2016, 04:20:32 AM »
M0 to M5 (biggest to smallest)
That would also work - but I think it doesn't capture the relative impressiveness between different categories. There's a good reason why Sins and Eve:Online call the biggest ships "Titans".

Offline Pumpkin

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #13 on: September 07, 2016, 05:22:52 AM »
Terminology change? Yes! Flashing neon YES!

My main point is to use "terminology" for guiding comprehension. Thus, similar ships must have similar names (or common prefix). Thus, the notion of unit families.
I'll link my old ideas about this:
* Sentinels
* Devices

On the topic of the triangle ships, I agree "missile       frigate" has to change. However I'm not very interested in the discussion around "battle cruiser", "capital ships", etc, as long as there is a common name/prefix/suffix for a family sharing mechanisms. Also, if the size is the only common denominator, Size must be the only common denominator (I mean: don't search a name to group spirecrafts, golems and dire guardians). And as said, as many ships will individually move, finding names for individual ships isn't something crucial right now.

On the "Core" matter, I can only agree with more coherency. The red "IV" and purple "V" are very apt at conveying levels of power. Also, MkV-only units might have no "mark V" in their name (and not "Core" neither!!!) but just the purple "V" under their icon.

I would also chime in a more diffuse issue: the useless words like "orbital" or "planetary" or "space" or stuff. Or else we could have "space advanced orbital factory" and "space standard fighter ship". Speaking of which, either make name them just "fighters" or give all triangle "standard": Std Fighter, Std Bomber, Std Frigate (and then we have the tachyon fighter, the electric bomber, the beam frigate, etc).

I also want to add the concern about racial naming. (Don't quote that sentence out of its context.) Instead of having AI XXX Guardian, Zenith XXX Golem/unit, Neinzul stuff, I would like to (1) see it everywhere (I want to know if the grenade launcher / MLRS / vorticular cutlas was invented by Humans or the AI, etc) and (2) see it separated from the name. Instead of "Neinzul Youngling Commando", it would be "Youngling Commando" with, somewhere in it's ID card, "Neinzul". Instead of "Zenith Electric Bomber", "Electric Bomber" is interesting enough for a name, and Zenith doesn't disappear.

That would also require some subtleties: the Neinzul Starship, for instance, is a Human design made with Neinzul technology. It doesn't produce younglings but drones. So the "racial" line in the ID card would display something like "Human (retrofit from Neinzul)" (or instead of retrofit, scavenged, adapted, etc).

Also, that would require some work for names like "[race] [category]". The Zenith Starship, for instance. Here is a small list of suggestions. (The origin race in parenthesis would be in the ID card.)
* Zenith Starship -> MLRS Starship (Human/Zenith)
* Spire Starship -> Photon Lance Starship (Human/Spire) -- The Beam Starship is already an AI design.
* Neinzul Enclave Starship -> Drone Starship (Human/Neinzul)
* Zenith Devastator -> Devastator Starship (Zenith) -- This one even lacks "starship" in its name.
* Spire Corvette -> Modular Starship (Spire) -- It's a starship, so it's not a corvette.

Last little nitpicking bits: often the name of a ship is "[weapon] [chassis]" or "[perk] [chassis]": missile frigate, beam frigate, teleport battlestation, stealth battleship, etc. However, some lack a [chassis] part (Teleporting leech what?, MLRS what?, Paralyzer what?). I suggest either embracing it and streamlining it (I wish to see more kinds of battlestations, planes, bots, etc) or removing entirely: if it's a starship, it ends with "starship"; if it's a guardian, it ends with "guardian"; if it's a fleetship, it doesn't end with a [chassis] name at all. Battlestations, bots, frigates, etc will cease to a thing. There will be a big need for patching everything, but with naming a ship after its eapon and perk, that sounds feasible (paralyzer, polarizer, mirror, etc). I feel I can do it. Even, I'll do it right now: I'll be back with a full list of renamed units with no [chassis] or [race] in the name. Only [weapon/perk/something] [family].


(Just a little random bit of stuff: what about "missile frigate" -> "lancer"? Fighter, Bomber, Lancer?)

EDIT: done. Tedious and marginally interesting, but just to prove it's doable.
Spoiler for Hidden:
Chassis names are not allowed (ship/frigate/bot/etc).
Race names are moved into the ID card and are not allowed in the name.
Perks are allowed.
Weapons are allowed (unless they are too banal).
Classes are allowed and mandatory; starships, guardians, etc. Fleetships have no "fleetship" in their name and thus have no class in their name.
Roles are allowed (raider, bomber, booster) but discouraged.

The "<10 rule" is a proposal to move all ships with a cap < 10 in the starship family.


Triangle ships are:
Standatd Fighter -> Fighter
Bomber
Missile Frigate -> Lancer


Acid Sprayer
Anti-Armor Ship -> Anti-Armor
Armor Booster
Armor Ship -> Beetle
Attractor Drone -> Attractor
Autocannon Minipod -> Acid Swarmer (Didn't add "stealth" but could have.)
Bomber
Bulletproof Fighter
Decoy Drone -> Decoy
Electric Shuttle -> Tesla Coil
EtherJet Tractor (Actually, this one fits.)
Eye Bot -> Eye Infiltrator
Grenade Launcher
Impulse Reaction Emitter
Infiltrator
Laser Gatling
Lightning Torpedo Frigate -> Lightning Torpedo Launcher (or Starship if <10 rule)
MLRS
Micro Parasite
Missile Frigate -> Lancer
Munitions Booster
Neinzul Railpod -> Railpod
Neinzul Scapegoat -> Scapegoat
Neinzul Youngling Commando -> Youngling Commando
Neinzul Youngling Fireflie -> Youngling Fireflie
Neinzul Youngling Nanoswarm -> Youngling Nanoswarm
Neinzul Youngling Shrike -> Youngling Shrike
Neinzul Youngling Tiger -> Youngling Tiger
Neinzul Youngling Vulture -> Youngling Vulture
Neinzul Youngling Weasel -> Youngling Weasel
Parasite
Powerslaver
Raider
Raptor
Saboteur
Sentinel Frigate -> Vigilant
Shield Bearer
Sniper
Space Plane -> Radar Scrambler (??)
Space Tank -> Tank
Speed Booster
Spider Bot -> Spider
Spire Armor Rotter -> Armor Rotter
Spire Blade Spawner -> Blade Spawner
Spire Gravity Drain -> Gravity Drain
Spire Gravity Ripper -> Gravity Ripper
Spire Maw -> Maw
Spire Mini Ram -> Mini Ram
Spire Railcluster -> Railcluster
Spire Stealth Battleship -> Stealth Flamer (or Starship if <10 rule)
Spire Teleporting Leech -> Teleporting Leech
Spire Tractor Platform -> Tractor Interceptor (or Starship if <10 rule)
Standard Fighter -> Fighter
Tachyon MicroFighter
Tackle Drone Launcher
Teleport Battle Station -> Teleporter
Teleport Raider
Translocator
Vampire Claw
Vorticular Cutlasse
Zenith AutoBomb -> AutoBomb
Zenith Beam Frigate -> Beamer
Zenith Bombard -> Bombard
Zenith Chameleon -> Chameleon
Zenith Electric Bomber -> Electric Bomber
Zenith Hydra -> Hydra
Zenith Medic Frigate -> Medic
Zenith Mirror -> Mirror
Zenith Paralyzer -> Paralyzer
Zenith Polarizer -> Polarizer
Zenith Reprocessor -> Reprocessor
Zenith Siege Engine -> Siege Engine
Zenith Viral Shredder -> Viral Shredder

Starships:

Flagship -> Flag Starship
Heavy Bomber Starship -> Bomber Starship
Leech Starship
Plasma Siege Starship -> Plasma Starship
Raid Starship
Riot Control Starship
Spire Starship -> Photon Lance Starship
Zenith Starship -> MLRS Starship
Cloaker Starship
Neinzul Enclave Starship -> Drone Starship
Scout Starship
Lightning Starship
Neinzul Combat Carrier -> Combat Carrier
Protector Starship
Spire Corvet -> Modular Starship
Translocator Starship
Zenith Devastator -> Devastator Starship
Beam Starship
Warbird Starship
Core Starship
« Last Edit: September 07, 2016, 05:49:45 AM by Pumpkin »
Please excuse my english: I'm not a native speaker. Don't hesitate to correct me.
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Offline Pumpkin

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Re: Terminology changes: weigh in! What else do you want to see changed?
« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2016, 08:46:26 AM »
I have to necro this topic, but I think several things are still to be done in this field.

This time I'll bring up the Guard Posts. With the guarding units folded back into the Shipyards' bays, they are no more posts for guards. I open the discussion, but I have few ideas (and no good idea) for them.

* Sentry
* Pod
* Turret (AI version?)
* Defender or Protector (confusing with Guardian?)

Or maybe just "Post" with the weapon-prefix giving more sense to what that post is for: Laser Post, Missile Post, etc. However, just "Post" as a family name doesn't convey the role.

I like "Sentry". I think it both convey the family's role and blend well with weapon-prefixes. It would require some distinction with the Sentinels (Tachyon Sentinel, Sentinel Frigate, Sentinel Guard Post) but as the usage of the word "sentinel" has no real meaning in AIW1, that might be okay in AIW2.
Please excuse my english: I'm not a native speaker. Don't hesitate to correct me.
Pumpkin>> Do I need another cure about paranoia on top of overexcitement?
Mal>> We play AI War, enthusiasm and paranoia are both required!