Pug Idea - Vintage style gameplay pug

Discussion in 'Events' started by Trickster, Sep 9, 2016.

  1. Xyaminou

    Xyaminou Member

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    dude, have you never used the beta branch? you only download the files that are different, for the beta branch it's like lower than 70MB, if he was just modifying a few scripts files it'd be like 1MB at most.

    I really don't see why anyone would have problems with that, unless they're super fucking lazy.
     
  2. Neoony

    Neoony Member

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    Thing is that people are super fucking lazy xD

    Any obstruction other than click and play can be a problem for many IMO. xD

    Its not a problem for me...
    Iam just saying... xD
     
  3. Thexa4

    Thexa4 Developer Staff Member Moderator

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    If you send me a full zip of the scripts folder I can create a steam branch for you within a week.
     
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  4. Xyaminou

    Xyaminou Member

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    I know I'm one of those lazy people, but some of the old Empires players long for those great games I'm sure they'd compromise.
     
  5. Neoony

    Neoony Member

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    Hmm, yeah I guess if I consider that its not just some usual pug, and its done by Trickster ( :D ), I guess it wouldnt be such a big problem.

    It just doesnt seem worth the hassle to me, for that 1 thing only.....in other ways, it could be that much smoother.
    But thats up on Trickster. Iam fine with anything really.

    EDIT:
    And I cant wait for this to happen :D
     
  6. Tama

    Tama Developer Staff Member Web Developer

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    I've done some research, and I think I have the changes necessary, although I can't commit them myself because my dev laptop has no internet today - perhaps thexa4 can use the patch I've attached with `git am`.

    Research costs were removed on Feb 3rd 2012 with commit 51940b6 in the scripts repository. I've attached a diff file of the research cost removal commit so that you can see what changed at that point, as well as a version of the research file, %STEAMAPPS%/common/Empires/empires/scripts/research_items.txt with those changes reverted as compared to the current release version, 2.11.0 (commit 548539a in the scripts repository).

    Duration conflicts:

    There are 10 researches whose duration was changed later than the research cost removal (revert conflicts); I want to also revert those (or at least most of them), because most were done to rebalance the fact that resource cost was removed. Please give your reasoned opinion - I'm not sure what we should do in these cases, that's why I've listed them here.

    The only exception is Upgraded Grenades, which was increased, from 20 to 30 research time. I feel that *was* necessary regardless of research cost, so I have left it at 30. It should also be safe in terms of NF/BE balance, unlike the other changes listed below.

    Improved Detonation Compounds was doubled from 30 to 60 seconds. I changed that back to 30, since I think that change was necessary to rebalance from removing research cost.

    Explosive Shells (aka HE) was lowered later, from 120 to 60; I've put it back to 120.

    Improved Warhead Compounds (aka UML) changed from 90 to 60; back to 90.

    Gas Turbine Engine was changed from 120 to 90 when research cost was removed, but further down to 60 later on. I've chosen to go back to 120.

    Advanced Magnet Research was changed from 90 to 60; back to 90. Rail Gun was changed from 60 to 90; back to 60. If I recall correctly, Railguns used to be a bit overpowered by design, but rather expensive. That shouldn't be a problem because the same was (hopefully) the case for some NF weapon - I don't recall which though.

    3 Phase Electric Motor was changed from 30 to 60; back to 30.

    Tracking systems was changed from 120 to 60; back to 120.

    Homing Missiles and Guided Missiles both changed from 60 to 90; back to 60.

    New, need costs

    These researches were added later and need new costs; please someone look at all the research costs (attached: costs.txt) and think of good values: Advanced Plasma Cannon Projectile, Capacitive Armor, Biological Cannon.

    Deflective Armor is back to the old 400 cost, 90 time; this was a conflict because of the name change from Reflective.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Oct 20, 2016
  7. Trickster

    Trickster Retired Developer

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    I want to point out that Research cost is not as important as a lot of other economy aspects, and that I still functionally agree with what I was trying to achieve with the removal of research costs at the time. We had a serious problem with the slippery slope whereby the moment a team found themselves unable to research, the game quickly spiralled out of their control due to being behind on research. I do not believe that simply re-instating research costs across the board, especially to old values, is best solution to our current issue.

    I'm going to look at doing all the economy tweaks in the next couple of days if I get time, leaving research costs until last. It might be worth doing the test without even changing the research costs, as this may provide a better control to other economy changes so we can isolate the effects they have. You are right though, a lot of the timings were changed to compensate for the removal of cost, however I think a few of these were reverted as well. At least, I'm surprised there's only 10 conflicts, I thought I changed more than that.

    I'll take a serious think about research costs but as I said, I'm starting to think it might be worth testing without this change so more appropriate values can be worked out. At worst, it might be easier to just go with a tiered system in the meantime in order to make things simple. That is, every tier you go up costs an extra 250 to research or something, with some exceptions. For example, Electrical would be 250, the next level everything would cost 500, with the final level (rails, 3phase, etc) costing 750. Based on this, Mech is 250, Upg Chassis 500, Adv Chassis 750, Heavies 1000. In reality, things would need tweaking on an individual basis, but as a starting point I might go with this and if it all works out, whoever your current lead scripter is can just balance it his own way from there.

    Last thing worth mentioning is that the original research costs weren't really based on anything specific. They were just always there, since before even I started playing the game. They got tweaked here and there over time, but they were never specifically chosen for any reason, at least during the time since I've been playing. They aren't based on any specific system or method, they were just arbitrary and then tweaked into balance.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2016
  8. Lazybum

    Lazybum :D Staff Member Moderator

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    Considering research is somewhat already balanced by time it might be simpler to just use 5 res for every second, as in (seconds*5)=cost. so 60 second things would be 300 res and something like heavy chassis(180 seconds) would be 900 res, which works better then a tier system because the current tier system makes no sense. At least this is what I was doing when I was working on a set of scripts to introduce a variety of research paths.

    I'm just saying this in case you feel like adding research costs back, I agree it would be better to do without it at first because as a commander in a bunch of games over the past year a lot of maps just produce a metric assload of res every second if it's high pop and research cost does nothing to help that. I do still like the idea of chassis having cost, just because it can extend the early and mid game a bit which is usually the best part of empires.
     
  9. Xyaminou

    Xyaminou Member

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    If research costs were to be re-added, we could change the way the resources are spent, instead of all at once we could have something like homeworld, where it spends the resources over the time it takes to research. Maybe that would help?
     
  10. Donald Trump

    Donald Trump Member

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    Another problem with research costs, the research doesn't reflect the cost anymore.

    The game has changed far beyond the point that research costs were viable. Armors and engines back then used to be more unique, used to be more "cost" worthy, such as 3-phase being extremely fast for the price/research time, whereas now most engines are the same now with very little variation. The problem with adding costs back in will be making sure that everything is, once again, unique and worthy of the price.
     
  11. Lazybum

    Lazybum :D Staff Member Moderator

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    If their cost is the same the value can be said to be the same. Just a thought...
     
  12. Sgt.Security

    Sgt.Security Member

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    If I am to bring back research cost, I'd make them cheap.
    With the exceptions of arty and nuke.

    If I want to take some resources away, I can just lower the wages instead.
    We shouldn't use research cost to control the overall resources, there are better tools to achieve that.

    "Research costs something", this makes the game look better.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2016
  13. Xyaminou

    Xyaminou Member

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    I don't know why people keep thinking that putting the research's cost back is intended to lower the resources income, it's not. That's not why I want to see research cost reinstated.
    The main reason, in my opinion, to have research cost make a come-back is to have a more linear technological progression and hopefully allow a bit more enjoyment of the early game.
    You should not be able to research heavies with armor and engines in 14 minutes, and weapons in 17 minutes.
    Nowadays the main research strategies consist in getting what's best for heavies and then straight on to heavies with optionally, sometimes (or if stupid commanders), pause for mediums.
    I want to see other paths considered, getting what's best for APCs and LTs or for mediums. And hopefully lower the amount of endless heavies fight.
    When you get heavies with the best load-out you can get at minute 20 in an hour long game, that means you have to fight the same way for the next 40 minutes. Hopefully with research cost implemented you would get different experiences, ideally cutting the heavies only fighting in half for an hour long game.

    That is only the research part of what Trickster is proposing.

    The other part is to lower the global resources income because it has only been increasing for the past few years, first with the fix of the infantry resources multiplier, then with the addition of the wages and more "recently" with the implementation of recycling.
    All of that (and the fact that the most expensive armor is 20 a plate instead of 50 for composite back in the days) puts us very far away from what some of us have experienced in our older interaction with Empires.

    Is it good? is it bad? I don't know, as far as I'm concerned as long as there are skilled players to play with, balance becomes almost irrelevant.
     
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  14. Tama

    Tama Developer Staff Member Web Developer

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    It's only a conflict if the change wasn't reverted later. Those 10 were tweaked later, and never put back again to the same value. And if you tweaked the same value 26 times, it would still be one conflict if and only if the final value in the current release is different from the value it was at right after you removed research cost.

    I think the slippery slope effect is something to be tweaked regarding total research cost, across the board - if researches cost half as much, you would have half that problem of slippery-slopeness, but also only half the effect that a commander has to balance researching against fielding tanks, which I think is a very important part of the game we have lost. Do we already have a research cost multiplier we can set by serverside value?
     
  15. Trickster

    Trickster Retired Developer

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    There might be a value for that, I forget. I would imagine there is.

    As Xya said above though, the research cost is really one of the less important things. That's mainly just aimed at delaying heavies. The overall economy changes would hopefully do a great deal more.

    I mean as an example, people didn't used to just go armour, engine, weapon, heavies. They'd probably sit on meds for a while until they built up the economy to sustain heavies. There's no decision to even make now, you just get heavies. Before, the team that got heavies early often just lost because they'd blow their resources on 4-5 tanks and that was it, they lost them and game over, which is absolutely how it should be.

    I'm going to aim to do this pug in around 2 weeks time. I'm away next Saturday so I can't do it then, and I haven't got the time to start working on all the settings as well as arrange things before tomorrow night. So I'll probably set a date for 2 weeks time, that way I'm committed to it and I'll have to find time to get things done before then.
     
  16. complete_

    complete_ lamer

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    if you raise the player multiplier threshold, it becomes even more grueling until it gets to whatever value you want it to be.
    there needs to be some sort of mercy shown to people who want to play smaller games. the game is just not playable until you hit 4-5 res a second. and that isnt possible in a small game where one team has lost some of the map.

    the problem with the multiplier is that it keeps multiplying after it reaches the value. at 12, it multiplies. at 24 it multiplies again. at 36 again. etc.

    e: basically the player multiplier only works when you know what amount of players will be playing. its terrible when you dont know if 16 people or 32+ are playing because its either too damn high or too damn low
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2016
  17. Sgt.Security

    Sgt.Security Member

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    Resources should be like this.

    You get like 5~6 res/sec (with half refineries) at even just 1 player.

    But only like 12~13/res sec at 50 players.

    Resources.png
     
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  18. complete_

    complete_ lamer

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    i agree with you security. i made a topic hopefully that will address the low rates.
    high rates can probably be addressed with a resource cap.

    on research costs:
    they do extend the game. but they also prevent the losing team from getting new research. perhaps only the chassis/3slot weapons should have a cost assigned to them?
     
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  19. Trickster

    Trickster Retired Developer

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    I'm not sure if I adequately explained this in the OP, but this is why my intention is to change the interval. My aim is to reduce the player multiplier to something like 2, but change the interval to like 15. What this means is, instead of getting resources every second, you'll get it every 15. The reason this is necessary is because if I change the player multiplier to 2, we end up with this issue of fractions of a resource. The game doesn't handle that properly and just tends to round. So to put it simply, if I reduce the resource income by 10x, but increase the player multiplier by 10x, they won't compensate for eachother due to rounding issues. However, if I make it so the resources are only provided every 15 seconds, then at most it can cost you 1 res per 15 seconds, rather than 1 per second.

    But both you and Security are right. I could explain in more depth but to be honest, the graph in the post above me mostly gets my point across. A base income rate with a threshold at which point it starts increasing, would be far better. It would also be better if the game handled fractions of a res better so that it could increase gradually, rather than jumping substantially at certain thresholds as it does now. As far as I'm aware, the player multiplier is still at 20 since I changed it from 12 back when I actually got the player multiplier fixed. This unfortunately means there are pretty substantial jumps in res at like 20, 40 and 60 players. At the time, I wasn't aware of this.

    It's a shame because in actual fact, the player multiplier issue I had fixed, the broken system before actually dealt with this issue far better than the fixed system. Before it would only add +1 to each refinery, rather than multiplying it each time the threshold went up. On the old system, a 3x ref would go 3, 4, 5, 6 as the player count increased. On the new system, it went 3, 6, 9, 12, etc. The new system was necessary because unfortunately, that old system tended to imbalance any maps which had multiplier refs by changing their relative value to other refs based on playercount. Take Mvalley: North was a pair of double refs, dam was a single quadruple ref. The refs at north go 2 + 2, 4 + 4, 6 + 6, while the dam goes 4, 8, 12. This keeps it equal. On the old system, the north would have gone 2 + 2, 3 + 3, 4 + 4, while the dam went 4, 5, 6. You can see how this changes the relative value of the refs. As the player count increases, the Dam became progressively more worthless, hence this had to be fixed.

    So TL;DR, a system which keeps the refineries relative value to eachother the same, while somehow providing a less linear ref increase, is what's required. In an ideal world, there would be a more gradual player multiplier increase (rather than every 20 players like it is atm), but where there's a base rate for the refineries for like 20 players or something. In other words, playing at 1 or 19 players makes no difference (as it does now actually), but after 20 players it starts gradually increasing, rather than not jumping again until 40 players is hit.

    Yeah I'm shit at writing this stuff concisely, but I hope I get the point across. We should run this test and see how the game plays out, and after which if it's successful and positive, then the current coders can maybe propose a system to help out sub-20 games in terms of resources, while still retaining relative refinery value. But it's important to remember that the point of this test pug is to try and fix game flow in proper games of Empires (32 players min). If we can nail that, then we just see how we can adjust the low-player games to achieve the same thing, but we can't fix everything in one go.
     
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  20. complete_

    complete_ lamer

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    hows that pug planning and fixing the res multiplier so my super shit and waste of space suggestion doesnt happen going?
     

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