Author Topic: Ironman mode implementation  (Read 2193 times)

Offline keith.lamothe

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Ironman mode implementation
« on: September 27, 2013, 11:55:18 PM »
This just in for 0.926:

(note, updated to reflect later changes made based on feedback here)
Quote
* Ironman!
** Added a new "Ironman?" toggle to the start-new-game menu.  Its description:
*** Are you insane?  Then Ironman may be for you!
**** When Ironman is enabled:
***** The "Save Game" menu item is renamed "Save & Quit", which immediately saves your game (to "Ironman_1", or "Ironman_2" if you've already got a separate game by that name, and so on) and brings you back to the main menu.
***** The "Exit Game" and "Load Savegame" menu items are removed (to quit, you must save; to save, you must quit).
***** Your save is automatically updated any time something really embarrassing happens to you.
**** If you are new to this game, and are wondering "Is Ironman right for me?", the answer is "No!".  Please get familiar with the game first :)

My question here is: are these acceptable mechanics?

Or do we need to drop the "After you load an Ironman save that save is deleted" rule due to power outages and crash bugs (not that the latter are common, to my knowledge, but occasionally...) ?

I've heard the "if you die, your save is deleted" rule as an alternate there, but doesn't that just let you say "hmm, I didn't like how that mission went, so I'll kill the app and reload"?

(we already moved away from deletion)

Not that we can realistically actually make it impossible to savescum.  Though we have some very mean tactics we discussed using, but ultimately what's the point?  Anyway, it seems that with any ironman implementation folks have to decide where to draw the line of what's a reasonable degree of savescum prevention.

And in the end that decision is mostly up to y'all, as long as it's feasible for us.

So, thoughts?
« Last Edit: September 28, 2013, 02:30:26 AM by keith.lamothe »
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Offline Misery

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2013, 12:15:23 AM »
You could just have the game autosave much more frequently, as in, during missions, not just in the city screen.

There are other Roguelikes that do this as well.  Minecraft also does this, and it works out pretty well for that one.  Deletion upon loading probably isnt a good idea.  With Windows being designed by a bunch of drunken monkeys with hammers, you can never quite know just when it will next go bonkers, after all.  The game itself doesnt need to crash for there to suddenly be an issue.


Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2013, 12:40:46 AM »
With Windows being designed by a bunch of drunken monkeys with hammers
One of the most conclusive arguments I've heard all year.


Ok, will take out the deletion thing.

But when exactly should it autosave?  After every action you take?  That could get a bit laggy.

Also, what name should it use for the save?  Would need to be unique, but I don't think there's really any way the player can choose the name of the save, and I don't want to add a new textbox UI element just for this feature.
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Offline Misery

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2013, 01:12:30 AM »
Nah, after every single action would just be silly.   Individual moves dont take much time and typically there's quite alot of them in a mission.   Maybe every 50 or so?  Definitely doesnt need to be in super small increments.

As for the naming, if there's only to ever be just one save at a time for that mode, it probably doesnt matter too much what the name is.  If you want the player to be able to run multiples, it could just be a blob of random numbers/letters, and the game could simply list them to the player as "Ironman 1" "Ironman 2" and so on.   Or, you could have the player choose a name for the save when they initially start the game and select their team and such, and then it could list them entirely seperately from the main mode, so that you only see those saves listed when you choose Ironman mode.   Minecraft and Dwarf Fortress both do that bit with the naming at creation, it's the best way I can think of to allow multiple entirely-seperate games able to be saved at once.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2013, 02:19:22 AM »
Ok, I've updated the original post in this thread with the new change notes for this.  How does that sound?  Less bonkers, at least, I think.

The process of identifying the moments to autosave is ongoing, but in general you can't actually do any kind of Ironman-savescumming in this model unless you intentionally kill the program from task-manager (or the drunken monkeys do it for you).  And to some extent if someone is willing to do that, well, that's kind of their own lookout, right?  But having reasonable points-of-no-return is a good thing.

Right now I've got it autosaving:
- whenever you start a mission (as in the normal game, except this is overwriting your actual save instead of a separate file)
- whenever you finish a mission (win or lose)
- whenever an exo gets destroyed in a mission

By the way, the game doesn't say this, but if you quit the game, rename your actual Ironman_1.save file to something else, and then load it back up in the game it will use the new filename you gave it.  So if you really really really want to name your own save you can, but I really don't want to add the UI for it in the game for just this ;)
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Offline Misery

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2013, 02:56:58 AM »
Yeah, that all sounds like it should work out pretty well, then.

I cant think of any real problems with it, at least.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2013, 03:11:35 AM »
I cant think of any real problems with it, at least.
I'm sure your input devices will know when you find the problems :)
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Offline nas1m

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2013, 04:29:11 AM »
I cant think of any real problems with it, at least.
I'm sure your input devices will know when you find the problems :)
Looks good to me as well!
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Offline Mick

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #8 on: September 28, 2013, 09:18:41 AM »
I like the sound of it. I dislike ironman implementations that try to be way too draconian to prevent savescumming. It can be harmful to the players who use the mode legitimately.

Offline Winge

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2013, 10:24:42 AM »
Nah, after every single action would just be silly.   Individual moves dont take much time and typically there's quite alot of them in a mission.   Maybe every 50 or so?  Definitely doesnt need to be in super small increments.

Hmm...I would save more often than 50 turns.  I'd think 10-20 would be a good range.
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Offline Teal_Blue

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #10 on: September 28, 2013, 11:03:02 AM »
So... how long is this IronMan Mode supposed to go on for? A regular game with no saves, so fifty missions? On RogueLike Hard Mode?

I've not heard of IronMan Mode, so I don't know what you are trying to do by doing this, can someone enlighten me?

I had a thought several weeks ago, but thought it might be best for an expansion, but what if there was an 'Endless Mode', where the player would go into a mission, severity would be set to whatever level they want set, but the basic idea, is the mission only ends when they die. But the purpose is two-fold:

We have a clock, and we have the number of bots killed. (actually if IronMan Mode does this, then cool, just tell me.) But the purpose is to show how much time and how many kills I got, or you got, or how many Misery got (ooooohhhh, i'm jealous!!) when they played on Endless. Which means the mission never runs out of enemy bots, they either spawn in the dark, or re-load after 25 turns (or 50) and every time they re-spawn we get maybe 2 health packs and 2 weapon re-loads. (so we can actually play for however long we need, before some accident, or fatigue, or miscalculation, or loss of faith gets to us.)

The whole purpose in suggesting this is so we can have a mode, where i play for 2 hours and fall after 145 bot deaths, and come back and have a screen showing that for my bragging rights. While someone else one ups me by playing for 3 and a half hours and getting 547 bot kills.

I mean, don't get me wrong, playing hard mode is cool and all, but usually only the best players can get that far, the casual players are outplayed. But in an Endless mode, you could play on any difficulty, even casual, and the casual players could enjoy it, but so could those on expert and misery settings too, giving everyone the chance to have bragging rights on their game.  :)

Does this sound good enough to try?

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Offline Tridus

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2013, 11:26:47 AM »
Ironman mode is meant to prevent you from going "oops I messed up, reload the save". In a game like FTL they delete your save when you load it, so there's no backing up. In XCOM, it's similar. Guys who die in missions stay dead and there's no do over.

It adds tension to the game because you can't undo failing a mission.

Offline Winge

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #12 on: September 28, 2013, 11:59:42 AM »
Ironman mode is meant to prevent you from going "oops I messed up, reload the save". In a game like FTL they delete your save when you load it, so there's no backing up. In XCOM, it's similar. Guys who die in missions stay dead and there's no do over.

It adds tension to the game because you can't undo failing a mission.

As a slight side-benefit, you don't have to remember to save your game  :P
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Offline Teal_Blue

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #13 on: September 28, 2013, 02:01:14 PM »
So its like the original RogueLikes where when you die thats it? It sounds interesting. I could go for that. I don't know how long i would last. Since i'm mostly a noob probably not long, haha, but well... it's still fun. I lose a lot at Arcen games and have just sort of gotten used to it.

Though sometimes i wish i could see the end of the games, maybe watching lets plays would help there.  :)

-Teal


Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ironman mode implementation
« Reply #14 on: September 28, 2013, 02:03:17 PM »
It's not really like the Roguelike "Hardcore" in that your exos don't stay dead.  "Ironman" is just savescum prevention, it doesn't actually change the rules of the game :)

A "Hardcore" conduct is something I'd like to do in an expansion, though, along with various other conducts.
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