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View Full Version : Diversity to gameplay, to game objectives + Troops prod AI


Ovocean
04-14-2008, 05:52 PM
Greetings,

I'm, all in all, very interested by this game !
Never have I been a great lover of strategy games - especially in multiplayer - for a few but important reasons. These, fortunately, seem to all be destined to be by-passed by DoF.

Just as I was starting to read a first piece of information about the latter, I was dreaming of a strategy game similar to an MMO wich would let me play in LAN, with friends, extensively long games on a huge map, where we would be able to develop kingdoms, extend and fight for territories. The main idea was to avoid the repetitive gameplay of classical RTS on skirmish maps, and have a real evolution of the game environment and style of play over days.
Then I read about the half-MMO mode for DoF and I was delighted. :) So we go for my first suggestion (rather a request) : Please, oh please, implement the "MMO" mode in LAN games !

Another problem I have with multiplayer RTS games are that I'm unable to manage economics and battles at the same time. When a fight begins, I dive into it, only to discover a few minutes later that all my buildings have stopped production, my fields are out of crop, and I've taken a great backwardness in my progression tree.
But here again, DoF claims it will let us choose to leave the micro management of the stronghold to an AI, yay !
Though... I don't know how far it goes, so here's another suggestion : An activatable (during play) option would let the AI manage production of troops ; the player would first choose among a few build presets, then would go take care of his ennemy easy in he/she's mind, knowing that reinforcement will be ready in time.

The last annoying thing for me is simply that I hate to lose a deathmatch game, watching my beloved city being destroyed piece after piece by a fervent opponent until my last peasant hits the ground yelling. I end up full of hatred towards irl friends, wich I hate. There are solutions to this, playing in coop against computer ennemies is a possibility offered by most current RTS games, and DoF. So that's fine. I've also read about a PvE mode ?
Anyway, what I would really like to see is some variety in game objectives :
- Assault maps where one player has to defend something against the opponent ;
- Maps with economic goals, needing collection of multiple ressources that the players will have to fight for ;
- And other things you can think of that don't require total destruction of the opponents, but encourages interaction between players. And, if possible, that encourages assistance between allies.
- Some excellent board games offer the players the choice between various (but balanced) objectives at the beginning of the game (or even halfway through it), impacting the way to play a lot. That's something I would appreciate to see in an RTS pc game like DoF.

That's it for this first post, I think I would better split my suggestions in multiple topics so other people can comment each...

And... actually I suppose that it's a bit late for you - devs - to implement most suggestions, right ?

frankein_fish
04-15-2008, 04:14 AM
Some nice bunch of question there, but to answear one of them there will be some kind of quest in the MMO mode plus event's.
And i gues there will probably be some in battle objectives.

Ovocean
04-15-2008, 05:30 AM
Thanks.
And from what I've read, my concern about encouraging support and assistance between allies will be fulfilled by the strong gameplay differences between subraces. Cheers !
Now I just hope that the skirmish mode will not be all devoted to deathmatch.

The Witch King of Angmar
04-15-2008, 05:16 PM
I don't think that'll be the case. There may still be alliances and such in it.

Puppeteer
04-16-2008, 12:40 PM
Not sure how popular the economic objectives will be, but if any objective map is to be implemented above all else it should be a freebuild mode. Though, actually, thinking about it, is that really such a good thing as this game's fortress building revolves around build plots (for the conventional humans, and elves, at least).

Joseph Visscher
04-16-2008, 01:24 PM
So we go for my first suggestion (rather a request) : Please, oh please, implement the "MMO" mode in LAN games !


I am 90% sure there will be, having a online muti-player gameplay is most likely way the hell harder to put into a game then a LAN game. which is almost the same thing. the LAN games will most likely come right along side the mutiplayer online games.



Another problem I have with multiplayer RTS games are that I'm unable to manage economics and battles at the same time. When a fight begins, I dive into it, only to discover a few minutes later that all my buildings have stopped production, my fields are out of crop, and I've taken a great backwardness in my progression tree.
But here again, DoF claims it will let us choose to leave the micro management of the stronghold to an AI, yay !
Though... I don't know how far it goes, so here's another suggestion : An activatable (during play) option would let the AI manage production of troops ; the player would first choose among a few build presets, then would go take care of his ennemy easy in he/she's mind, knowing that reinforcement will be ready in time.



I disagree with that concept and hopefuly will never be added to the game.

This is a R.eal T.ime S.trategy game and muti-tasking is what separates the pros from the noobs and is the back bone of the RTS Genre. If you can manage your resources and your army at the exact same time and the other player cant, you will have the upper hand in defeating his army, or defeating his economy. In any other RTS you will see this, and if you don’t, trust me it will get boring very quickly.



The last annoying thing for me is simply that I hate to lose a deathmatch game, watching my beloved city being destroyed piece after piece by a fervent opponent until my last peasant hits the ground yelling. I end up full of hatred towards irl friends, wich I hate. There are solutions to this, playing in coop against computer ennemies is a possibility offered by most current RTS games, and DoF. So that's fine. I've also read about a PvE mode ?
Anyway, what I would really like to see is some variety in game objectives :



Losing and Winning is apart of all RTSs, if you don’t lose a few you wont win a few either, so what’s a point of playing a game if you can only win? Your suppose to have a challenge, if you don’t, how would it be fun or even worth playing?
Maybe this is why you haven’t liked RTS games, because you don’t know how to play them inwhich I mean, if you don’t have a challenge for you to defeat and get better, what’s the point? Get what I mean.

Having a 'comp stomp' or co-op, humans vs AI is a most likely yes, not fully sure.


Whats PvE? Player Vs Environment? like creeps? little quests, kill all these human banits and save some slave mine workers?
I think we may have something like that in online. :)



- Assault maps where one player has to defend something against the opponent ;



We most likely will have this online, we do already offline in skrimishes.

iceblast
04-16-2008, 01:51 PM
This is a R.eal T.ime S.trategy game and muti-tasking is what separates the pros from the noobs and is the back bone of the RTS Genre. If you can manage your resources and your army at the exact same time and the other player cant, you will have the upper hand in defeating his army, or defeating his economy. In any other RTS you will see this, and if you don’t, trust me it will get boring very quickly.

i agree getting the ai to do the economics is been a big ***** and not playing the game properly.

Ovocean
04-16-2008, 04:59 PM
Thanks for the answer and all the good news Joseph!


I disagree with that concept and hopefuly will never be added to the game.

This is a R.eal T.ime S.trategy game and muti-tasking is what separates the pros from the noobs and is the back bone of the RTS Genre. If you can manage your resources and your army at the exact same time and the other player cant, you will have the upper hand in defeating his army, or defeating his economy. In any other RTS you will see this, and if you don’t, trust me it will get boring very quickly.
I don't think the concept wouldn't ruin anything. Think of car races: you can try to drive an automatic car, but you will only be able to reach the best speeds if you drive a not-automatic car (hand gear car, I don't know how you call it).
Same thing here: the newbs (like me) and lazy people (like me) will go the easy way with the presets of troops, but if they want to really master the game (like I'll do after a certain amount of time) and be relevant against pros, they'll have to learn to manage everything simultaneously.

As for your last argument, no it won't be boring. Since Ground Control, there has been plenty of strategy games where there's no base building and economics at all, and it's not boring.

What is boring to me is if I have to manage so many things that I don't have a single second to think of good and complex strategies during the game.

But yes, I understand that it would perhaps modify a lot the way we play the game, and if it's not appealing to the devs, well... too bad for me.

Losing and Winning is apart of all RTSs, if you don’t lose a few you wont win a few either, so what’s a point of playing a game if you can only win?Sure, I was only speaking of the particular way of loosing when I know 15m before the end of the game that I'll be defeated and I can only contemplate my city being destroyed piece by piece. This I can't stand and I do prefer playing some more peaceful games than living this. Well, maybe I've grown up, maybe I can now... But it's human nature...
Though, I have no problem with losing in other conditions. So that's only a suggestion: diversity in LAN modes. It can only be a good thing, right?


Not sure how popular the economic objectives will be, but if any objective map is to be implemented above all else it should be a freebuild mode. Though, actually, thinking about it, is that really such a good thing as this game's fortress building revolves around build plots (for the conventional humans, and elves, at least).Yep, the economic objective is not a good idea. It was an example too quickly thought up.

Ovocean
04-17-2008, 05:40 AM
Oh, an idea! What if we could be two players controlling the same civ? It's then up to the players to decide who takes care of what. With a Voice over IP software - or in LAN of course - I think it could be easily manageable.
This could also be a way to have more than eight players on a map. I can imagine duo partners tournaments. :)

Aye, I suppose it could be boring in the beginning of a game. But one could take care of sending explorers around the map and capture wild animals, and give orders to peasants, for example, while the other places the buildings and takes care of the economy.

PS: Sorry for I should have edited the previous post.

Puppeteer
04-17-2008, 10:47 AM
RTS is a Real-Time Strategy. The Strategy aspect is almost certainly implemented into all 'RTS's, but I don't know what your interpretation of the Real-Time part is. For me, that tells me it simulates the theme of a game with detail but not being overly complex. Micromanagement is a key aspect and basic fundamental of all 'RTS's, and thus handing it over to an AI this game should, by my definition, be called only a Strategic game. Unlike 'FPS's where it is accuracy, and reflex which rule the day Strategy is (supposed to be) about being able to think quickly and come up with tactical decisions whilst managing the necessities. Allowing AI to take over either unit production or the economy really means at the end of the day you've had help. Good balance between micromanagement and strategy makes the pros, the pros. Not some AI doing half the work...

Ovocean
04-17-2008, 11:05 AM
I think you give too much importance to the definition, it's not the definition that makes the game but rather the opposite.
And actually I also think that you are wrong with the definition. A Strategy game means that it implies thinking out strategies as its most important element in gameplay. Real Time means that it is not turn based, that the players play simultaneously; this has nothing to do with things like "the player has to control everything" or anything else.

Btw, it is said that DoF will include some automating in the economy for those who don't want to micromanage but prefer concentrate on managing their units etc. (at the cost of a bad economy, as an AI won't do as well as a human). So I'm not the only one to think like I do. :p

Darvin
04-17-2008, 12:58 PM
I agree with Joseph Visscher's position, but I disagree with his reasoning on this matter. He's right that such a system of automation would not work for Dawn of Fantasy, but he's wrong that it wouldn't work for any game in the genre. If a game was designed with that type of automation in mind, it could be a very fun and competitive game all the same.

RTS games are based on choices. Players must make decisions and execute them within a limited time frame. Players cannot manage absolutely every decision, however. We certainly don't have time to trace out the paths that each individual unit should follow to get between point A and point B, there is a pathing system in place to do that automatically. The player loses a degree of control, but is freed to make his decisions in a more streamlined manner. As a result, most RTS games automate trivial, boring, or non-consequential decision making.

Now, I think that a system that automates the economy as mentioned could work for a different game. In fact, the economic system could be expanded on a much highest scale to require a greater degree of planning and structuring because the AI could be counted upon to deal with the simpler and lower level operations. Or the economic aspect could be simplified dramatically so there is no longer any real intelligence required at that level and game could become far more aggressive with a greater focus on commanding the army while the base was sidelined and mostly AI controlled. There are many ways such a game could be implemented and be both very fun and competitive.

Dawn of Fantasy places a great deal of complexity in the base and how you manage it. If you read the details on the game, you can see there actually is a considerable amount of automation; you don't need to directly control individual workers, enabling you to manage your economy at a level you might not otherwise have been capable of. This automation has enabled DoF to introduce a higher level of economic planning. However, if you take away that higher level of planning, you simplify the intelligent and non-trivial decision making process required from the player. Good automation expands upon the player's decision making, options, and choices. Bad automation cuts them down. Your suggestion in this context falls into the latter category. In a different game it could be the former, but it'd have to be designed for it.

Ovocean
04-17-2008, 01:15 PM
Err, actually all of my arguments applied to the concept of an AI taking care of producing presets of troops. I've really not said much about automation of the economy.

This said, I think I would agree with you. I need more info on what has been done as to "automating" micromanagmt of the economy in DoF. You seem to know more than me on that topic.

Edit : Argh, the discussion is starting to be a little complex, so back to the start: If you want me to play to this game with great pleasure, give me an AI that will help me manage some part of the game. It's my personal taste. It's not fun for me to be inundated with one thousand tasks; I like the Stragety part of the game, so give me time to think about good strategies.

Joseph Visscher
04-17-2008, 01:34 PM
There’s already is AI built into the workers of dof for gathering resources, so there won’t be to much micromanagement, for your workers; it should be farley easy, it’s not going to be like tasking your workers on every single tree, they will go to the next nearest tree on their own. Lol.
But it will still be upto you on how many do what, I do not believe we will have AI that will automaticly move lets say 10 workers logging wood to go mine some gold if your running out of gold.

The Witch King of Angmar
04-17-2008, 02:19 PM
What, in your opinion, will DoF focus more on? The military aspect or the economy?

Ovocean
04-17-2008, 02:58 PM
What, in your opinion, will DoF focus more on? The military aspect or the economy?Is it a question for me? I would say military, but what are you driving at?

The Witch King of Angmar
04-17-2008, 03:03 PM
Is it a question for me? I would say military, but what are you driving at?

I actually meant for Reverie. I'm wondering because that will determine gameplay alot more.

Joseph Visscher
04-17-2008, 03:21 PM
What, in your opinion, will DoF focus more on? The military aspect or the economy?


My opinion, Economy in the beginning for sure, late game it will be military and supreme tactics, espeically with sieging, or being sieged yourself. But some of these tactics will be thinking ahead and improving your economy before the whole war/battle begins. . . So yea, both... but if i had to choose just one, I would go with economy and building your empire.

The Witch King of Angmar
04-17-2008, 03:59 PM
That's what originally drew me to the game was the castles and the buildings such as farms or mills.

Puppeteer
04-17-2008, 04:05 PM
Yay castles! lol
Are you going to have the unit cycle that Aoe3 had, whereby you click a button and the unit queue is repeated? Might be cool, but underused if people like to change what they're building quite often to meet up with demands

Darvin
04-17-2008, 05:07 PM
But it will still be upto you on how many do what, I do not believe we will have AI that will automaticly move lets say 10 workers logging wood to go mine some gold if your running out of gold.

I actually think there's an important middle ground to hit here. While we don't want the computer making executive decisions for us, we do want it to streamline redundant or trivial tasks. What could be useful is a central way to manage the workforce without having to command workers individually. We don't want workers being automatically allocated from lumber to gold just because the AI decided it should be, but there should be a streamlined way for a player to quickly make such a change.

The amount of workers assigned to every type of job (farming, building, mining, chopping, etc) could be controlled via a central interface, and therefor workers could be easily allocated from one job to another without having to individually find and assign workers. As well, that could automate the replacement of workers killed by harassing enemies. The streamlining of the user-worker relationship offered could be quite beneficial to the overall experience.

frankein_fish
04-18-2008, 12:30 AM
The amount of workers assigned to every type of job (farming, building, mining, chopping, etc) could be controlled via a central interface, and therefor workers could be easily allocated from one job to another without having to individually find and assign workers. As well, that could automate the replacement of workers killed by harassing enemies. The streamlining of the user-worker relationship offered could be quite beneficial to the overall experience.

That's acctuly a quite good sugestion, with an simple interface handling ur worker's whitout taking away the most critical elements could work!

Ovocean
04-18-2008, 01:37 AM
Aye, this is something I've been thinking about, Darvin.

The interface would display for each task the number of workers, and you could hit "+" or "-" to increase or decrease the number of workers assigned to the task. "+" would take them from the inocuppied pool, and "-" would add them to that same pool (they'd go back home if not already around there).

But you could still give them orders manually one by one, for example if you really don't want a part of the forest to be chopped down. Or maybe in this case you would even have a little lasso icon next to the lumberjack task, and would use it to lasso select the trees that your workers are authorized to chop down. Then, when the zone is empty, there could be a sound and written warning (and maybe the lumberjacks would try to help elsewhere if they can, while still stated as "lumberjacks", until you define a new zone?).
Etc. etc.

Edit : Of course, this would not prevent the AI to do the stuff we expect from it, as soon as it's not contradictory to our last orders.

Puppeteer
04-18-2008, 10:12 AM
Real Time means that it is not turn based, that the players play simultaneously; this has nothing to do with things like "the player has to control everything" or anything else.

Well the micromanagement is greatly increased, and thus as a result of being a non-termbased game where you wouldn't do much micromanagement (look at AoW and HeroesofMightandMagic). With the simplest definition of non termbased comes the added bonuses, which I thus add (wrongly or rightly) as part of the definition.

LordSlayer
04-18-2008, 05:31 PM
Even if I'm looking forward to having a little help with the micromanagement, I just hope the AI won't do stupid things (like cutting down a forest when half your army is hidding in it!).

The Witch King of Angmar
04-18-2008, 06:34 PM
That would actually be strategic because it would rid you of your cover.

Puppeteer
04-19-2008, 05:27 AM
So your AI is working... against you? ;)

The Witch King of Angmar
04-19-2008, 06:29 AM
Oh, I didn't know it was on your team. :p

LordSlayer
04-19-2008, 10:38 AM
the unit cycle that Aoe3 had, whereby you click a button and the unit queue is repeated

Might be good but then it advantages people that make only 1 type of unit instead of trying to evolve to their needs.