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Author Topic: Suggestions  (Read 27879 times)

Offline Ron Losey

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #30 on: March 06, 2007, 06:41:26 PM »
Allow me to stick my nose in where it doesn't belong.  Why should balance issues be soley up to Ron?  Sure a lot of betatesting is bug and exploit hunting but part of it is also giving your impressions of gameplay. Things like the start was too easy/hard, just right or the middle section wasn't interesting because of x, y and z.  And to give an accurate impression the game should be played unmodified as delivered.

Sorry for butting in and I'll shut up now.

It's not that "balance issues" are up to me.  It's that I designed the RCM, which is currently being used as our combat damage model.  That means that if there is a problem with the weapons data, it's MY problem.  I make a mess ... I clean it up.

If somebody who didn't understand everything I did were to change the model, odds are they would make it worse, not better. 

Offline LCJr

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #31 on: March 06, 2007, 10:56:43 PM »
Allow me to stick my nose in where it doesn't belong.  Why should balance issues be soley up to Ron?  Sure a lot of betatesting is bug and exploit hunting but part of it is also giving your impressions of gameplay. Things like the start was too easy/hard, just right or the middle section wasn't interesting because of x, y and z.  And to give an accurate impression the game should be played unmodified as delivered.

Sorry for butting in and I'll shut up now.

It's not that "balance issues" are up to me.  It's that I designed the RCM, which is currently being used as our combat damage model.  That means that if there is a problem with the weapons data, it's MY problem.  I make a mess ... I clean it up.

If somebody who didn't understand everything I did were to change the model, odds are they would make it worse, not better. 

Yes Ron we know.  But balance extends well beyond your weapons modding.  Are there enough recruits available to deal with the enemies you face?  Are you able to make enough money to afford said troops?  Is troop or party X overpowered/underpowered?  Are you able to complete quests at the level they are awarded to you?  When you consider balance you have to look at the mod and the challenges it presents as whole not just the weapons.

Offline Ron Losey

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #32 on: March 06, 2007, 11:32:55 PM »
Granted, but you have to start somewhere. 

I say start with the physical properties of the weapons and armor, and make them behave in a way that seems reasonable.  Then, if this unbalances other issues like number of recruits or relative party strength, tweak those things later.  That gets the process flowing in one direction.  Once you have concrete data for the items, you can add or subtract troops from the units and/or modify their skills and inventory until the game balances.

The alternative is to change B to fix A, and then change C to fix B, and then change A to fix C.  Unit A is too strong, so you weaken their armor, so that makes Unit B too weak, so you beef up their weapons, and that makes A too strong again, until if you ever do get game balance, it will be for absurd reasons that cannot be tweaked, and any future additions will unbalance everything again.  That is NOT a good process.

The various RCM models have been doing pretty well on this.  HW required some minor changes to the troops to balance, but that didn't take long.  ONR required some rather large changes to the troops model, but we took care of it.  Mesoamerica here has done pretty well as-is (as soon as the fixes in weapon speed are implemented ... but I cut corners on that the first time - my bad).

It's not like myself or any of the various design and testing teams involved in this thing are newbies to computer games.  None of us are going to make one arbitrary change without checking for issues of balance.  Quite the opposite, actually ... which partly accounts for the delays in release of both this mod and HW.  The Beta testing has dragged on much longer than it should, to avoid releasing something that lacks long-term balance.

If the results don't speak for themselves, complain then.  If the results are less than satisfactory, I'll be the first to join you in raising hell over it. 

Offline LCJr

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #33 on: March 07, 2007, 12:26:06 AM »
And what does this any of that have to do with the beta testers giving their impressions of how they perceive the mod's balance?

Offline Ron Losey

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #34 on: March 07, 2007, 01:32:04 AM »
And what does this any of that have to do with the beta testers giving their impressions of how they perceive the mod's balance?

Absolutely nothing, except that if it's a problem with equipment, it's my baby.  Report those over in the thread for Realistic Combat Model, and I'll get on it ASAP.

If it's a problem with anything else, then as soon as we confirm that it's NOT an equipment problem, then it's somebody else's call.  Either way, the call can't really be made until I confirm it one way or the other.  That's what keeps us from running in circles.

That is a side effect of my constructing a monster with the RCM.  I built something so complex that even the slightest change could have unforeseen consequences.  I didn't really ask for that part, but I inherited it... at least until everybody adjusts to the new model.  Quite honestly, I'll be glad when more people adjust to the new model, because it puts a lot of pressure on me as it is now.  If everyone ever gets settled into this thing, then my input will no longer be necessary.

But for now, equipment and balance issues are my fault, at least until proven otherwise.  If they're broken, then I get first crack at fixing them.  If it's not my mistake, then I'll pass it on to somebody who can fix it.

So, what exactly is the problem?  What version, and what is the issue?

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P.S. - If it's the bloody halberds being too fast, I just sent Guspav a repaired version yesterday ... don't bother reporting that until you've seen the tweaked weapons speeds.  That was certainly my mistake the first time around, but we should be good now.

Offline LCJr

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #35 on: March 07, 2007, 08:37:32 AM »
Did you even read the thread Ron?  Seems like I've asked you question before, ah yes the History thread.  You're going on and on about the RCM when it wasn't even mentioned.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2007, 08:41:11 AM by LCJr »

Offline Ron Losey

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #36 on: March 07, 2007, 09:46:38 AM »
Did you even read the thread Ron?  Seems like I've asked you question before, ah yes the History thread.  You're going on and on about the RCM when it wasn't even mentioned.

Did I read the thread?  Let me recap...

Well, the original statement said that if there were balance issues, the question should be directed to me.  I did not make that statement, nor did I particularly encourage it, but it seemed to fit the environment...

The response was something along the lines of why I should be in charge of balance issues.  Granted, it seems odd that, since I am a relative newcomer to this mod, that I should be considered the key player in determining game balance.  I considered that a logical question and one deserving a response.  (Other things were stated in that message, but I only responded to the portions which seemed to be directed at or about me.  Others were left to respond to other portions as they saw fit, as those were not really my field.)

Therefore, in response, I stated that since I just finished changing all of the item stats, the basic procedure is going to be handing all balance issues to me until all item data is debugged.  Once the item data issues are resolved and the outcome accepted by all concerned, further issues of balance will be handled at a later date, by adjusting whatever other data seems not to fit the desired outcome.  The implication is that no major changes should be made without first considering the equipment and/or recent changes to it.

This has not been an easy process, but my hope is that once the item data is in place and fully functional, my input will no longer really be necessary and all playability issues can be returned to control of the original mod designers.  The sooner that this can be accomplished, the better - but we're not quite there yet.  (Hopefully the most recent set of changes will be getting very close.)  Until we get there, this combat model will continue to be at the core of any issues of playability....  It is, after all, what has been changed.

Is there anything that needs to be added to this sequence?  Is this procedure in some way unacceptable?  If so, please point out what needs to be altered.

If there are suggestions for the game that have nothing to do with immediate problems of military balance or playability (i.e. mission scripting or economy), then they are not in my field... and any questions of that nature, if directed at me, will be passed on to someone else.

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On that note - if anybody has noticed any issues of balance pertaining to combat, at any level (player, troops, strategic map and war, whatever), do please post them in the combat realism thread immediately.  The sooner we know about them, the sooner they can be debugged.

Suggestions or bugs that have little to do with the combat model continue to go here or in the bug reports.

Offline LCJr

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #37 on: March 07, 2007, 10:06:13 AM »
You're a lost cause Ron.  At least Guspav understood the dicussion and that's the main thing.

Offline Ron Losey

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #38 on: March 07, 2007, 10:44:06 AM »
Guspav, I had a thought on the Diego Velazquez army.  Maybe we're going at this the wrong way.

As it is, if you make them hostile to the Spanish, they go running off toward Texas or someplace.  Then, their parasitic powers over the Spanish kill you before you can find them.  If you make them neutral, they just wander randomly, still exerting their parasitic powers.

Could we go the other way, and make them like a true faction?  Say, they arrive with the equivalent of four Spanish armies and six patrols (or however many it would take to be certain to cripple the Spanish faction).  Then, instead of weakening the Spanish by magic, just let them hunt down the Spanish troops.  They will do enough damage within a few days to start being very costly to Cortez.  If one or two wander off ... well, they will either eventually be destroyed or you will eventually find them (possibly after they finish off your faction, but that's the risk involved).  Their largest unit could still contain some of the "decisive battle" effect, but it wouldn't be an all-or-none proposition.  Most importantly, there wouldn't be that instant time limit where they drink you using voodoo magic ... you would have more than five minutes to get organized and deal with them.  Also, you won't have to build a single army of 300 troops, and then try to figure out how to let the player get 300 troops to match... the armies would be more-or-less normal size with the rest of the game.  There would just be several of them.

I don't know how historical that would be, but I'm assuming the Governor's army didn't just land in a big bulk without sending out a few patrols first.  (Cortez may have been the better commander, but I'm assuming Diego Velazquez didn't send his army out under the command of a complete turnip.) 

That's the one way I see to actually give Velazquez MORE troops than the entire Spanish faction, and still let the player engage them.  A little less dramatic than one big final battle, but a lot more workable from a balance perspective.


Offline guspav

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #39 on: March 07, 2007, 11:01:58 AM »
ah yes that is logical, however, what would happen if the NPC parties actually manage to destroy that army? if they're constantly engaging them you'd have to join a battle and then you'd lose the hero and the prisoners (remember that nasty bug) if armie manages to fix that enemy_defeated  dialogue starter soon, I'll look into making it that way, but like it is right now I'm not sure it'll work very well

Offline Ron Losey

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #40 on: March 07, 2007, 11:13:59 AM »
ah yes that is logical, however, what would happen if the NPC parties actually manage to destroy that army? if they're constantly engaging them you'd have to join a battle and then you'd lose the hero and the prisoners (remember that nasty bug) if armie manages to fix that enemy_defeated  dialogue starter soon, I'll look into making it that way, but like it is right now I'm not sure it'll work very well

We'll get the dialog fixed eventually.  I have faith in the abilities of you and the other programmers around here.

However, the risk is the same now.  If another party attacks them, same bug.  Worse now, because if they get into a long, drawn out fight, you can't attack without triggering the prisoner bug and you can't wait because they sap your faction just by existing.

The cheap work-around would be that if your "hero" prisoner is taken by someone else, just have him re-appear back with Cortez... attached to some dialog of how he was turned in for a bounty.  Then you could presumably talk/bribe Cortez to hand him over to your custody.  (This would require that Cortez NOT offer to join you until after the Velazquez army was defeated.)


Offline guspav

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #41 on: March 07, 2007, 11:40:29 AM »
hmm yeah I guess, I'm not sure that'll work either, because when NPC armies defeat DV's army they never capture Panfilo Narvaez, I'd  have to check if the defeat is being registered.. but yeah.. time to experiment I'd say ;)
« Last Edit: March 07, 2007, 11:42:57 AM by guspav »

Lord Adler

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #42 on: March 07, 2007, 08:07:45 PM »
You're a lost cause Ron.  At least Guspav understood the dicussion and that's the main thing.


I think you've butted in quite enough.


Guspav: I'm sorry if I look like a leech that just in this for the pre-beta, but I reported every bug I saw and have made some comments about the balance of the RCM in the RCM thread (one of which was ignored completely). The thing I said about leadership never really occurred to me until it was mentioned because I always play with an imported character that is tough enough to even the odds.

I'd say that it's damn difficult to play either side at the moment. With the spaniards, your men die quickly against overwhelming odds, and as a native you die because you are half naked and have a spear. Some new tactics features would be good, but I understand that this is Armagan's problem. So for the moment I suggest we clean up the mod until we have fewer crashes and buggy dialogues, and make sure that all the battles work as they should.

Offline guspav

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #43 on: March 07, 2007, 08:54:27 PM »
I don't think you are a parasite at all and I am aware that you have reported several bugs in the past, but what you said earlier about not being any bugs anymore and that you had tweaked the mod and not telling that it made it better but after someone already had suggested it, seriously got to my nerves :D

Keep participating though, I bet you'll all like the new stuff I'm including in the next beta :)

Offline LCJr

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #44 on: March 08, 2007, 09:59:49 PM »
It's a public forum Adler and I was trying to be polite about it.