Author Topic: This game is just fabulous!  (Read 3192 times)

Offline Vacuity

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This game is just fabulous!
« on: May 29, 2014, 12:08:49 PM »
I bought this quite a long while back, but hadn't got around to trying it out until Monday.  I've barely done anything else since, other than eating and working (no, not even much sleeping).

The concepts of the bots are just wonderful, though a few of them are downright nasty.  Trying to take out doombots in the first few missions (before you have access to mines/virus or the epic exos) is very troubling.  Maybe the sniper exo would help, but I don't have one on this, my first, playthrough.

I just completed a level populated mostly by the bots which spew out mines, the bots which electrify the floor and silencebots.  Sorry, they're all dead now, so I can't check the names offhand.  I realised that most likely my most effective tactic would simply be to get them to kill each other, so after I opened a door that exposed almost all the rest of the level, I laid down a few mines behind it, got my science exo to whistle at the door, then switched back to my ninja and retreated past my few mines.  In the end, only two of my mines were 'used', and the entire level was self-cleared.  I only used 15 rounds of ammo and 3 mines (another 7 had been laid, but nothing survived that far) to clear the level, and all but two of those mines were used at the beginning.

I had another level earlier that was laid out like a large open warehouse stuffed absolutely full of cover objects.  After switching to my science exo, I alerted a *lot* of hunterbots, but also saw a terminal nearby offering to explode all cover objects.  And there are some bombbots standing around, too.  The level was cleared at the cost of a dozen-odd stealth moves and one hacking point, with just a few survivors in the far corner of the map to be mopped up.

Some bits are really tough, though.  As I said, Doombots are a nightmare in the first few missions when you don't have access to suitable tools for dealing with them, and a large open level makes dealing with sniper-style bots and Empbots together a *serious* pain.

Perhaps that would be my biggest criticism: when it's easy, it's a complete walkover, but when it's tough, it's *really* tough.

Still, awesome game!

Edit: Pantherbots and Avalanchebots are the two bots I couldn't remember the names of, respectively.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2014, 12:34:50 PM by Vacuity »

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2014, 01:07:45 PM »
Glad you're enjoying it, it's one of my favorites from what we've done :)
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Offline Vacuity

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2014, 01:13:28 PM »
I finished my second campaign, did a little testing, and figured I'd offer a few tidbits of feedback to be chewed over or left hanging.

Firstly, balance seems a bit strange in this game.  What defines which bots are chosen as the "end challenge"?  In my first game I had Hawkbots, Treadbots and Doombots which overall was quite a challenge between getting swarmed and simply having to kill that many doombots.  In the second game the nastiest (non-boss) bots were Tigerbots, which really aren't that tough to deal with.  Some playing around a little while ago offered a game where the end challenge was going to include dumbots and invigorated dumbots.  Other tests offered some really quite tough-looking opponents.  Is there any system to this?

Secondly, the sniper exo seems rather underpowered in the long run.  I understand the science and ninja exos offer particular tactical uses on maps which make up for their relative weakness in fights, and let's be honest, the ninja exo with a high enough trap skill and enough mines could clear most levels single-handed with little trouble.  The Assault exo offers raw damage and a degree of tactical flexibility with its weapon assortment, the epic Siege has long range, high firepower and area effect, and by comparison, the epic Sniper has similar ranges, but less flexibility about it (no shadow torpedoes), significantly poorer firepower, and limited area effect options.  In the early game it's useful for its long range, but the epic version is seriously lacking compared to either the Assault or Siege.  Didn't try the Brawler, so can't comment on that.

Thirdly, still with balance, I really do think the balance between different bots is a little too far off.  Dumbots, invigorated dumbots, and hidebots, along with maybe a few others, are almost completely negligible as dangers.  Wyvernbots and doombots are comparative horrors, wyvernbots not least because there are always lots of them when there are any.  Although I played both games with a ninja exo, I suspect that avalanchebots and pantherbots would probably be even more horrific to face without one, while with a ninja exo, they'll basically clear the map for you at pretty nearly zero risk.

Fourthly, and moving away from balance, the power generators on the last map are a nice idea, but a little wonky in practice.  As I said, in my first game, I had treadbots and hawkbots, which knocked out pretty much every generator long before I had any sort of real chance to do anything about it.  I'll grant that it didn't matter so much because I wiped the map, and then had a single lone dumbot to face on the second round, and well, one dumbot's not likely to be a really serious threat.  In the second game, I managed to keep most of them safe, but found myself with a one-square width corridor between me and some bots, as well as the exit, and this corridor was blocked with a power generator.  I had to destroy my own power generator in order to complete the level.  Self-defeating is the best description, but outright idiotic is a pretty close second.  Again, I wiped the map, and there were no leftovers, so it mattered even less than the lone dumbot from my previous game.  Still, it really doesn't seem right.

Fifthly, I understand the reason for having leftovers carry over to a second map on the final showdown, but facing a lone dumbot was pretty hilariously silly.  In the case where there's going to be "spillage", could a larger chunk be siphoned off for the second round?

Finally, for all the criticism, it's lots of fun to play!  I'll probably go and play something else for a while now, but if you release an expansion, I'll be happy to shell out and then use it.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2014, 01:17:42 PM »
Glad you're still enjoying it :)

I'm not sure about the selection of bots, it is largely random and that can certainly impact balance.  Probably something to iterate on.

On the Sniper, I've basically heard claims for every exo being OP or UP, so I'm not really sure where each of them is at.  Often the underpowered concerns don't notice some aspect or another of the unit.

And yes, some bots are really just chaff, where others are death.  The distribution and "cost" of each could stand tuning, to be sure.

I wasn't involved with the endgame power generators (iirc) so not sure what's going on there, but it's something to consider.

And yea, the lone-bot-carryover is kind of strange.  I hear about such cases semi-often and I wonder if it's not some off-by-one bug somewhere making it more likely than it would really be normally.  Either way, yea, it needs to have logic to split the end mission along more sane bounds if it really needs to split it at all.
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Offline Vacuity

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2014, 01:51:46 AM »
For Exo balancing, it's quite possible that I missed something useful, but the siege's flexibility seems a step above that of the sniper, the raw damage seems a step up too, though I may be mistaken.  Comparing damage inflicted between area of effect attacks and direct attacks is always a bit squiffy.

In a straight up comparison between how much I used the two exos in their respective playthroughs (which isn't very scientific), the sniper exo was probably used more in the early game, while the siege exo was definitely used more in the mid- to late-game.  I'd say that's because by that stage of the game, I'd equipped range-extending, attack-boosting and all-weapons-attack-boosting equipment to both my assault and science exos such that they offered sufficiently long-range, high-powered shots for most cases as well as having more useful alt- weapons to back them up without having to waste a turn switching exos.

I'll say that I'd be very reluctant to try a game without a ninja and a science exo.  An assault seems semi-necessary for raw damage capacity and tanking (shields of 1144 and regeneration of 1140?  Yes, please!).  For the fourth slot, I haven't tried the brawler, the siege seems very useful mid to late game, and particularly for the last mission, the sniper only really seems particularly early game when there are no other options for long ranged attacks, and for some of the bosses, when I'd rather have the siege anyway.

In any case, it's a fun game, which is what counts more than anything else. :)

Offline _K_

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2014, 10:11:35 AM »
I'm not sure about the selection of bots, it is largely random and that can certainly impact balance.
That would be quite an understatement.

Here the summary of my most recent expert "run":

Start the run as Rey+ Brawler/Science/Siege/Sniper
Look at the final battle bot selection: wyvern, doom, tiger and something else.
Close the game
Uninstall the game
Uninstall steam
Format the HD
Burn the PC


Seriously though, i dont think i would have enough ammo to kill all those bots, even with Rey's respawns and 3 tries you get on expert.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2014, 10:17:20 AM »
Here the summary of my most recent expert "run":

Start the run as Rey+ Brawler/Science/Siege/Sniper
Look at the final battle bot selection: wyvern, doom, tiger and something else.
Close the game
Uninstall the game
Uninstall steam
Format the HD
Burn the PC
You forgot "run the HD through a grinder, and then a degausser" intermediate step, and the final "load into missile, fire at the sun".


So, any specific suggestions for how it does those picks?
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Offline Vacuity

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2014, 11:05:09 AM »
Assign bots to a "class", say "nasty", "mid" and "chaff" for example.
Depending on difficulty level, assign x nasty bot kinds, y mid bot kinds and z chaff bot kinds.

At easier difficulties, you would sometimes get nasty bots to deal with, but never more than one type in a mission.  At harder difficulties, it would be pretty common to face two or more nasty bots in a mission, and chaff would be a welcome, but rare, relief.

This is already sort of implemented in the categories of boss bots, and the "special" bots, but could be extended to cover all kinds of bots.

Are you looking for more details?  I don't mind putting a few minutes into drawing up lists for you if you think it'd be helpful.

Thinking further, a slight disappointment is that the player only ever meets two kinds of boss bots in a single campaign.  It might be fun (!!FUN!!) to add a single boss-type bot to the more lucrative missions: the Bahamut devices and the Command Centres, specifically.  The boss type is randomly chosen and would thus add a little extra tactical challenge to those highly lucrative missions, and make the player feel like he's getting to see and experience more in his game.

Edit: It occurred to me that the system I'm describing would not so much help _K_'s problem, as set it in stone.  I suppose I'm suggesting this as something to replace or (more likely) offset the current system of bonus damage and shields at higher difficulties.  Higher difficulties should ideally be facing bots that are more tactically challenging, not the same bots that you simply have to hit five times as often.  Granted that a lot of the most challenging bots *are* ones that need to be hit several times, but... I hope you see my point.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2014, 11:14:54 AM by Vacuity »

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2014, 11:15:44 AM »
Yea, there's already some categorization and pick-controlling along those lines.  Exactly how it applies to the final-mission-bot-list I don't recall right now.  Anyway, adding the chaff/mid/nasty distinction sounds like it could help.  And yes, basically a list for which bots you think go in each would help :)

On adding other boss bots to special missions, not sure about that as it's kind of like AIW's ship picking: the AI doesn't get every ship every game (even in special circumstances), to help with variety.
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Offline Vacuity

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2014, 12:24:13 PM »
Hah.

Started a new game to check the list of bots.  The list for the final battle is: Invigorated Dumbot, Hidebot, Thiefbot, Ammobot and Raptorbot.  I bet _K_ wishes he'd got this selection!

OK, by my estimations (ones with a '*' I'm kinda unsure about):

Chaff
Ammobot
*Batbot (This is actually quite nasty if you're unlucky with its movement)
Blunderbot
*Cannonbot (Again, this is quite nasty if there's a pack of bots together)
Dumbot
Invigorated Dumbot
Eaglebot
Hidebot
Stealthbot
*Teslabot
Thiefbot


Mid-tier
*Avalanchebot (With a ninja exo, they're more of a help than a hindrance)
Blastermaster
*Bombbot (Dangerous, but also dangerous to the bots)
Commandbot
EMPbot
Gaffebot
Hunterbot
Leaderbot
Mastermindbot
Ninjabot
*Pantherbot (With a ninja exo, they're more of a help than a hindrance)
Raptorbot
Silencebot
*Thunderbot
Tigerbot
Treadbot


Nasty
Doombot
Wyvernbot

Currently marked as Special
Absentminded Leaderbot
Bodybot
Deathbot
Diamondbot
Galaxybot
Mantabot
Radarbot
Razerbot
Recoilbot
Sentrybot
Shieldbot
Skybot


I would also consider moving Leaderbots, Commandbots and Mastermindbots to a separate set, say "Auxiliaries" that will never make up more than 25% of the total bot numbers (or "power", or however it gets assigned) in a level.  It's kinda strange when there are more of these than anything else on a level as they cannot boost other bots of the same type.  It's kind of like in AIWar, the AI sending a wave of munitions boosters.  And nothing else.

It might then be possible to move a few of the current "specials" to the "nasty" group, say things like Shieldbots (and Skybots?), which could appear more often without causing, err, undue distress.  The really wierd or frustrating bots, such as Diamondbots and Radarbots would still remain in the Special group.

If you'll forgive me for waffling further about hypothetical bot composition in missions:

All missions at all levels have a 50% chance of having one bot type from the auxiliary group, replacing a bot type from the easiest difficulty group.

I'm not sure offhand how many kinds of bots turn up in a mission (I never actually counted), but say

Casual missions

3*chaff - full set of bots +
2*chaff - half sets of bots +
1*mid/nasty - full set of bots


Easy missions

2*chaff full set +
1*chaff half set +
1*mid full set +
1*mid half set+
1*mid/nasty full set


Normal missions

1*chaff full set +
1*chaff/mid half set +
2*mid full set +
1*mid half set+
1*mid/nasty full set


Hard

1*chaff half set +
2*mid full set +
1*mid half set+
1*mid/nasty full set+
1*nasty full set


Expert

2*chaff/mid half set +
1*mid full set +
2*mid/nasty full set+
1*nasty full set


Misery

2*chaff/mid half set +
1*mid full set +
1*mid/nasty full set+
2*nasty full set

Under this kind of system, there probably isn't enough variety in the "nasty" set, which is why I'd suggest moving some of the more reasonable specials to that set.

Well, anyway, that's my idea for putting it together.

P.S.  Why is there no "Nastybot"?  It'd be a great name for a bot.  Maybe "Miserybot", too.  No one likes him.  When he dies, the bots nearby are so happy that... they fire their main weapon in the air and lose a turn and a piece of ammo?  The Nastybot works like the "auxiliaries", but with a bite, maybe he increases ally weapon damage but *reduces* shields.  Sorry.  Imagination's off in overdrive just now.  It was a tough day at work.  I'll stop now.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2014, 12:29:03 PM by Vacuity »

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2014, 02:57:44 PM »
Ok, finally got a chance to look into this and architecturally it looks similar to what you're suggesting (I think) :

(Edit: this is for picking final mission bot types)

Picks 2 from Smaller:
DumBot
Invigorated DumBot
TreadBot
TigerBot
HideBot
StealthBot

Picks 2 from Middling:
BlunderBot
CannonBot
BlasterBot
BlasterMaster
DoomBot
NinjaBot
LeaderBot
CommandBot
ThiefBot
AmmoBot

Picks 1 from Larger:
HunterBot
TeslaBot
ThunderBot
PantherBot
MastermindBot
WyvernBot
RaptorBot
SilenceBot

Picks 2 from Boss:
ViperBot
TethysBot
ClawBot
ScorpionBot
DragonBot


Will cross-check that with your list, and look at making it more difficulty-dependent, but wanted to let you know what it was actually doing right now.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2014, 02:59:24 PM by keith.lamothe »
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Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2014, 04:30:55 PM »
Further investigating normal mission bot population, and here's a trace of one mission on Hard for just the normal bots (not specials yet, need to run soon) :

Code: [Select]
= Starting bot type selection for mission PropulsionLab with DaysLeft=36
Late enough that we're not still using hand-picked combos for normal bots, so considering each possibility:
Considering DumBot: accepting
Considering BlunderBot: accepting
Considering CannonBot: accepting
Considering HunterBot: accepting
Considering TeslaBot: accepting
Considering ThunderBot: accepting
Considering BlasterBot: accepting
Considering BlasterMaster: accepting
Considering DoomBot: accepting
Considering DumBotInvigorated: accepting
Considering BatBot: accepting
Considering EagleBot: accepting
Considering NinjaBot: accepting
Considering TreadBot: accepting
Considering PantherBot: rejecting because MinimumDayForSeeding (20) > currentDay
Considering TigerBot: accepting
Considering LeaderBot: accepting
Considering CommandBot: accepting
Considering MastermindBot: accepting
Considering WyvernBot: rejecting because MinimumDayForSeeding (30) > currentDay
Considering RaptorBot: rejecting because MinimumDayForSeeding (30) > currentDay
Considering BombBot: accepting
Considering EMPBot: accepting
Considering AvalancheBot: rejecting because MinimumDayForSeeding (20) > currentDay
Considering HideBot: accepting
Considering StealthBot: accepting
Considering SilenceBot: accepting
Considering ThiefBot: accepting
Considering AmmoBot: accepting
Considering GaffeBot: accepting

Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed EMPBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed HunterBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed BlasterBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed NinjaBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed BlasterMaster
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed BlunderBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed TeslaBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed GaffeBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed CannonBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed SilenceBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed DumBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed BombBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed DoomBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed ThunderBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed TreadBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed DumBotInvigorated
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed LeaderBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed ThiefBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed AmmoBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed BatBot
Because have more than 5 normal robot types, randomly removed MastermindBot

= Final selection and hypothetical-frequency of normal robot types:
20x EagleBot
40x TigerBot
280x CommandBot
40x HideBot
40x StealthBot

Normal Bots actually chosen:
5x EagleBot
2x TigerBot
55x CommandBot
4x HideBot
6x StealthBot

So, uh, yea, I'd say something's coocoo-for-cocoa-puffs in the frequency computation, and it does seem like it would help to have a more careful decision making process for picking which 5 eligible normal bot types to pick, more along the lines of the small/medium/large used for the last-mission-bots list.
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Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2014, 06:10:29 PM »
Ok, I've fixed the frequency inversion for 1.010.

Here's an updated (as of 1.010) table of all bots you can run into in a normal mission (so excluding the missions that pull from the end-of-game-bot-army) :

TypeCategoryEarliestDayLatestDayRelativeFrequency
EagleBotNormalEnemy06049
TreadBotNormalEnemy06049
DumBotInvigoratedNormalEnemy06047
BatBotNormalEnemy06047
HideBotNormalEnemy06047
BombBotNormalEnemy06047
TigerBotNormalEnemy06047
StealthBotNormalEnemy06047
DumBotNormalEnemy06047
NinjaBotNormalEnemy06035
AmmoBotNormalEnemy06035
ThiefBotNormalEnemy06035
DoomBotNormalEnemy56035
BlasterBotNormalEnemy06035
CommandBotNormalEnemy36023
CannonBotNormalEnemy06023
BlunderBotNormalEnemy06023
BlasterMasterNormalEnemy06023
GaffeBotNormalEnemy06023
LeaderBotNormalEnemy36023
AvalancheBotNormalEnemy206011
SilenceBotNormalEnemy06011
EMPBotNormalEnemy06011
ThunderBotNormalEnemy06011
TeslaBotNormalEnemy36011
HunterBotNormalEnemy06011
PantherBotNormalEnemy206011
RaptorBotNormalEnemy306011
WyvernBotNormalEnemy306011
MastermindBotNormalEnemy36011
MantaBotSpecialSeedingEnemy06047
BodyBotSpecialSeedingEnemy06047
DeathBotSpecialSeedingEnemy406035
GalaxyBotSpecialSeedingEnemy06035
ShieldBotSpecialSeedingEnemy06023
SkyBotSpecialSeedingEnemy06023
AbsentmindedLeaderBotSpecialSeedingEnemy36023
SentryBotSpecialSeedingEnemy06011
RecoilBotSpecialSeedingEnemy04511
RazorBotSpecialSeedingEnemy04011
RadarBotSpecialSeedingEnemy06011
DiamondBotSpecialSeedingEnemy04511

The NormalEnemy ones go on normal-bot spots picked by the map generator, and the SpecialSeedingEnemy ones go on the special spots.  From what I've seen the overall counts of normal spots and special spots are fine (I'd rather not tinker with mapgen itself right now, anyhow), the problems have been more with which bots it picks for them.

For 1.011 I may try to subdivide the Normal by "how much of a pain in the butt are these?" tiers like Vacuity suggests, but for 1.010 I'd like to try it with the non-inverted frequencies and see where that brings us.

Any suggestions on changing those RelativeFrequency values?  To clarify, it's used thus:

Say the 5 normal bot types picked by the game for a normal mission (at random, aside from earliest-day/latest-day restraints) are:

TreadBot (frequency 49)
DumBot (frequency 47)
NinjaBot (frequency 35)
LeaderBot (frequency 23)
HunterBot (frequency 11)

Total of frequency values is 165

What that means is that for each normal-bot spot the game has a 29.7% (49/165) chance of picking TreadBot, and a 6.7% (11/165) chance of picking HunterBot.  And %'s between those for the others.

In 1.009 and before the frequency values were more like 20 for the TreadBot and 400 for the HunterBot (280 for the LeaderBot, 160 for the NinjaBot, and 40 for the DumBot, if you're curious), giving a rather different distribution.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2014, 05:50:38 PM by keith.lamothe »
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Offline _K_

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2014, 06:19:21 PM »
I have noticed the update and decided to check how it's going over here. Thanks for the info on how the bots are picked. It seems obvious to me that due to the games low popularity, not enough balance passes have been done on... pretty much anything - bots, parts, exo weapons, etc.

So let me go through the list. I grabbed the data off the wiki because i am too lazy to find a way to get all bot data straight from the game. When playing on higher difficulties enemy health is BY FAR the most important stats. You can learn how to avoid almost all damage by using LoS and enemy bot quirks, but there is a hard limit on the amount of raw damage you can possibly deal with available equipment. As result, what matters the most is how much ammo and how many turns is takes to kill a given enemy. The only bots whose damage can be tricky to dodge are the "sniper" ones, with range over 10-20. Sometimes no cover or corners is available and you end up having to take a hit. These are the only ones who might get a hit on you even if you play near perfectly.

So, if i was to assign some "difficulty" value to every bot, 60% of the score would depend on these 2 stats, 30% more on the bot's gimmick, and only 10% on the rest of stats.

So lets check the health and range of those bots and how appropriate their current grouping is. Red is what i consider OP, green is what can be considered UP.

Picks 2 from Smaller:
DumBot - 50 HP / 4 RNG
Invigorated DumBot - 50 HP / 5 RNG
TreadBot - 200 / 2 RNG
TigerBot - 600 / 4 RNG   - i dont care that its almost harmless. I simply run out of ammo if there are too many of these. This  bastard doesnt belong to "smaller".
HideBot - 40 HP / 2 RNG
StealthBot - 75 HP / 5 RNG

Picks 2 from Middling:
BlunderBot - 200 HP / 6 RNG
CannonBot - 200 HP / 5 RNG
BlasterBot - 50 HP / 20 RNG
BlasterMaster - (no data in the wiki), from what i recall nothing dangerous. Might even be OP.
DoomBot - 800 HP / 7 RNG   - how the HELL is that monstrosity considered "Middling"?  It has more hp AND more range than the rest of its class, and it's quirk also makes it STRONGER without giving it a weakness.
NinjaBot - 50 HP / 4 RNG
LeaderBot -  (no data in the wiki), from what i recall has mediocre stats, compensated by a strong ability. This guy is ok.
CommandBot - 175 HP / 6 RNG
ThiefBot - 40 HP / 5 RNG   -  5 range is not too much, ammo theft is not that terrible, especially on harder difficulties where everything one-shots you. Why then it has so little health?
AmmoBot - 60 HP / 3 RNG  - even at 10x, I'm not sure this guy's virus cost is high enough. Unlimited plasma cannon ammo make almost any mission trivial. No other bot offers an advantage as huge as this one.

Picks 1 from Larger:
HunterBot - 200 HP / 12 RNG
TeslaBot - 200 HP / 20 RNG
ThunderBot - 200 HP / 8 RNG
PantherBot - 200 HP / 1 RNG
MastermindBot - (no wiki data), as i remember, stat-wise its nothing special, and the ability is cool but strong. A slight HP nerf probably wouldnt hurt.
WyvernBot - 800 HP / 7 RNG - I know even the description says its almost a boss-tier bot, but i really dont like its design. Almost all other bots have quirks, and often weaknesses that can be exploited. This guy is just all round super-strong, with no weaknesses or any interesting mechanics. I would be ok if it was named "PeonBot, or SoldierBot" and was a 200 HP / 5 RNG boring bot with no powers. Why make an all around boring unit and then give it the stats of (almost) a boss?
RaptorBot - (no wiki data), as i remember, it has low range and its own HP is not too high. His special mechanic is pretty cool.
SilenceBot - 50 HP / 3 RNG


I can imagine how hilariously easy the final battle would be if the "army" was made of the bots with lowest HP: DumBot + Invigorated Dumbot + NinjaBot + AmmoBot + SilenceBot. I am absolutely certain i could beat that without breaking a sweat on expert, possibly even on misery.

Also, the list is missing the following bots:
AvalanceBot
GaffeBot
EagleBot
BatBot
EmpBot

None of these are particularly troublesome, or too weak, so not mentioning them in the earlier list is not a problem.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2014, 06:35:30 PM by _K_ »

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: This game is just fabulous!
« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2014, 06:48:06 PM »
I have noticed the update and decided to check how it's going over here. Thanks for the info on how the bots are picked. It seems obvious to me that due to the games low popularity, not enough balance passes have been done on... pretty much anything - bots, parts, exo weapons, etc.
I agree in general.  FWIW the actual pieces of equipment received more focused balance attention and I think are closer to where they need to be for balance.  That was the only part of balance I was personally knee-deep in, and Chris was having to handle all the various project-manager/CEO aspects of the project in addition to the rest of the game stuff.

Even if it's more balanced, though, the customization system in general still requires more mental energy from the player than I'd like.

Anyway, yes, more balance passes are needed.  That means time from me to review feedback and implement changes, etc, but the main thing needed is ongoing feedback from a broad enough group of players that it's not just making it suit the desires of a particular person, etc.


I agree that bot health is extremely important with the current model, probably too much so.  It's not entirely inappropriate that the enemy's main danger is by its sheer meatshieldness (after all, it's intentionally un-clever and even anti-clever), but actually losing because you ran out of ammo is a bit much.

So stuff like the TigerBot needs to not be Smaller or needs to not be that high in HP, etc.


Quote
TigerBot - 600 / 4 RNG   - i dont care that its almost harmless. I simply run out of ammo if there are too many of these. This  bastard doesnt belong to "smaller".
So maybe drop HP to 400 and move it to Middling?

Quote
DoomBot - 800 HP / 7 RNG   - how the HELL is that monstrosity considered "Middling"?  It has more hp AND more range than the rest of its class, and it's quirk also makes it STRONGER without giving it a weakness.
Yea, that should move up to Larger, and maybe come down to 500 HP?

Quote
ThiefBot - 40 HP / 5 RNG   -  5 range is not too much, ammo theft is not that terrible, especially on harder difficulties where everything one-shots you. Why then it has so little health?
So possibly buff the hp to dumbot levels and move it to Smaller?

Quote
AmmoBot - 60 HP / 3 RNG  - even at 10x, I'm not sure this guy's virus cost is high enough. Unlimited plasma cannon ammo make almost any mission trivial. No other bot offers an advantage as huge as this one.
Yea, I think it should probably be changed such that if it gifts ammo to a player exo it only increases each weapon by 1 unit of ammo and then the AmmoBot selfdestructs.  Possibly bring the virus cost back down some, dunno.  I'd like virusing these things to be an interesting choice (so not making them immune to virus) but I don't want them to provide an "asymptotic" benefit, for lack of a better term.

Quote
WyvernBot - 800 HP / 7 RNG - I know even the description says its almost a boss-tier bot, but i really dont like its design. Almost all other bots have quirks, and often weaknesses that can be exploited. This guy is just all round super-strong, with no weaknesses or any interesting mechanics. I would be ok if it was named "PeonBot, or SoldierBot" and was a 200 HP / 5 RNG boring bot with no powers. Why make an all around boring unit and then give it the stats of (almost) a boss?
I'll need to review that one and figure out if there's some quirk that's just not working or whatever.  Either way the HP could come down to 600 or 500 to take a bit of the "bullet sponge" edge off. 


Quote
I can imagine how hilariously easy the final battle would be if the "army" was made of the bots with lowest HP: DumBot + Invigorated Dumbot + NinjaBot + AmmoBot + SilenceBot. I am absolutely certain i could beat that without breaking a sweat on expert, possibly even on misery.
Suggestions on changing the end-game-bot picking logic are welcome.  Possibly aiming for a certain target HP per 100 bots based on an expected ratio of smaller:middling:larger?  Not that it'd follow that super-strictly to avoid hamstringing the randomness, but also not letting it go to the extreme outliers.


Quote
Also, the list is missing the following bots:
AvalanceBot
GaffeBot
EagleBot
BatBot
EmpBot

None of these are particularly troublesome, or too weak.
They're missing from that particular list because they're not eligible to be chosen as end-game-bots :)
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