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  1. - Top - End - #541
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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Concept: Natural resting point
    I think this is a cool concept and we can run with it. Will need some details ironed out, will tackle those as we go.

    Recommend continue work on Agents, then a more comprehensive look at Technology to wrap up the scattered thoughts we've been laying down.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    How are the Agents coming along? Anything I might be able to help with?
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    How are the Agents coming along? Anything I might be able to help with?
    I've just had a whirlwind week, I had the posting window open three days out of five but there just wasn't time to focus right. Things return to normal next week.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I've just had a whirlwind week, I had the posting window open three days out of five but there just wasn't time to focus right. Things return to normal next week.
    No worries. Hope things get less blustery soon!
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    No worries. Hope things get less blustery soon!
    Mostly good busy, but busy nonetheless.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Spoiler: Vampirates
    Show
    Vampire Pirates were even cooler than I imagined they would be.

    And I imagined them to be unbelievably cool.

    Total Warhammer has been getting better and better with each patch. A lot of CA games have been them kinda going through the motions but with TWW itís clear that everyone involved is having the time of their life. The animators are all going a step beyond, the voice actors are UNBELIEVABLY hamming it up and the mechanical team is relentlessly tinkering and throwing out oddball ideas to try and make the most satisfying experience possible (this DLCís innovation: weíre just gonna steal all the cool stuff from Heroes of Might and Magic 3). Every single aspect of the game is saturated with passion, daring, and an increasing amount of experience about what works and what doesnít.

    Cylostria the ghost opera singer lady has been a blast to play. Iíve decided to take her show on a Grand Tour of the world before finally putting in to port at Lothern for the grand finale. My goal is to beat every single faction leader in the game, burn down every capital and sing in the ruins before moving on. I donít need to hold any territory, I donít need to defend anywhere, Iím just a fat ghost crusiní around the seven seas getting in rad fights and firing comical amounts of bullets from my unliving hordes and giant flamethrower shipwreck golem. But far more importantly her voice actor hits every line out of the park. Normally I play with sound off and my own music on but I canít bear to do that when I might miss out on lines like DO YOU APPRECIATE ART?!?!?!? shrieked from the hammiest woman who ever died.

    The tour so far has gone through Mazdamundi, Morathi, Alith Anair, Crone Hellebron, Grand Heirophant Khatep, Tetch Craventail and Malekith the Witch King. Iím done with Naggorand now and will be putting in to port in Norsca before flouncing down through the Old World. My treasury is at Ďlolí and my army composition is perfected. Thereís no stress to this game, itís straight up the most enjoyable parts of the TWW formulae and itís great.


    Anywayz let's give a belated unit focus

    Unit Focus: Agents

    Agents are bitter, dusty women, ill adapted to some foreign climate. They're tourists who are here to burn your country down. The CIA guy with the sunglasses and bad sense of humour who is sorta indistinguishable from being an arms merchant. They want to make the world unstable because an unstable world is one that gives opportunities for their superiors.

    As such, their actions are all about causing chaos and undermining a stagnant board. These are the offensive pieces.

    Actions:
    - Incite rebellion. Anti-Army. This action's developed a lot into a form I'm much happier with than the original design. A multi-stage, building up rebellion that makes a country progressively more costly to hold onto. This means an agent needs to deploy in a single country for the long term.

    - Infiltrate Corporation. Anti-Exec. I think 'assassinate executive' as an action is very binary oldstyle play when we're unifying our thing around levels of effect. Infiltrate Corporation instead attaches an Agent to an Executive like a lamprey, following him around and slowly building up an infiltration bar through the medium of cyberpunk operatives running nets etc.

    Level 1: Beginning infiltration. 0-1 has no penalties, though maybe early signs of compromise.
    Level 2: Internal strife. A low trust environment inflicts a penalty on all the Executive's actions. The chaos is plain at this point.
    Level 3: Company dissolves. The internal chaos, assassinations and media attention causes the company to collapse, destroyed like an army in insurrection. It'll eventually re-form at the superpower as assets are bought out and new companies fill the void left by the old megacorp. This may not happen immediately but this is definitely bleedout territory.

    - Counterespionage. Anti-Agent. This is a tricky one to pull off because you need to attach the Agent to an enemy Agent to start it, and this starts a James Bond style hunt in the shadows.

    Level 1: Shadowing. Just building up a profile and laying groundwork.
    Level 2: Targeting. At this point attempts start on the enemy Agent's life, identity and assets. The Agent may be wounded and suffer decreased efficiency at this stage.
    Level 3: Terminated. The goons in black power armour kick in doors with shotguns. Constant gunfights result. May survive the first attempt but maybe not much more than that.

    So what makes this cool is if your Agent is hunting an enemy agent, then the enemy agent has a choice to make. Stick with the mission, see if you can achieve the objective before you get whacked? Or abandon the mission and withdraw across the border - if you do that then you're safe. You don't know who's winning that race so every time you choose to end the turn you're hoping that you can achieve what you came for before the other guy takes you out.

    - Deploy Superweapon. A similar 3 stage thing where you recruit gimmick henchmen, steal a giant diamond, launch the death ray satellite into orbit etc.

    A cool thing about these stages is that all of them give really interesting hooks for technology to sink into. Imagine perhaps a technology that gives you +50% resistance to the Terminated stage. That'd mean your agent would be a murderous killer cyborg who doesn't care if the other guy finds out where he is because he's gonna get the job done through anything. You'd send that guy into an area where your opponent has specialized an agent for detective work who's good at blowing through stages 1 and 2 as quickly as possible.

  7. - Top - End - #547
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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Spoiler: Vampirates
    Show
    Vampire Pirates were even cooler than I imagined they would be.

    And I imagined them to be unbelievably cool.

    Total Warhammer has been getting better and better with each patch. A lot of CA games have been them kinda going through the motions but with TWW itís clear that everyone involved is having the time of their life. The animators are all going a step beyond, the voice actors are UNBELIEVABLY hamming it up and the mechanical team is relentlessly tinkering and throwing out oddball ideas to try and make the most satisfying experience possible (this DLCís innovation: weíre just gonna steal all the cool stuff from Heroes of Might and Magic 3). Every single aspect of the game is saturated with passion, daring, and an increasing amount of experience about what works and what doesnít.

    Cylostria the ghost opera singer lady has been a blast to play. Iíve decided to take her show on a Grand Tour of the world before finally putting in to port at Lothern for the grand finale. My goal is to beat every single faction leader in the game, burn down every capital and sing in the ruins before moving on. I donít need to hold any territory, I donít need to defend anywhere, Iím just a fat ghost crusiní around the seven seas getting in rad fights and firing comical amounts of bullets from my unliving hordes and giant flamethrower shipwreck golem. But far more importantly her voice actor hits every line out of the park. Normally I play with sound off and my own music on but I canít bear to do that when I might miss out on lines like DO YOU APPRECIATE ART?!?!?!? shrieked from the hammiest woman who ever died.

    The tour so far has gone through Mazdamundi, Morathi, Alith Anair, Crone Hellebron, Grand Heirophant Khatep, Tetch Craventail and Malekith the Witch King. Iím done with Naggorand now and will be putting in to port in Norsca before flouncing down through the Old World. My treasury is at Ďlolí and my army composition is perfected. Thereís no stress to this game, itís straight up the most enjoyable parts of the TWW formulae and itís great.
    On the contrary, art appreciation is at an all-time high.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    - Infiltrate Corporation. Anti-Exec. I think 'assassinate executive' as an action is very binary oldstyle play when we're unifying our thing around levels of effect. Infiltrate Corporation instead attaches an Agent to an Executive like a lamprey, following him around and slowly building up an infiltration bar through the medium of cyberpunk operatives running nets etc.

    Level 1: Beginning infiltration. 0-1 has no penalties, though maybe early signs of compromise.
    Level 2: Internal strife. A low trust environment inflicts a penalty on all the Executive's actions. The chaos is plain at this point.
    Level 3: Company dissolves. The internal chaos, assassinations and media attention causes the company to collapse, destroyed like an army in insurrection. It'll eventually re-form at the superpower as assets are bought out and new companies fill the void left by the old megacorp. This may not happen immediately but this is definitely bleedout territory.
    Does the Agent auto-follow their target here? And what exactly happens at Level 3?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    - Counterespionage. Anti-Agent. This is a tricky one to pull off because you need to attach the Agent to an enemy Agent to start it, and this starts a James Bond style hunt in the shadows.

    Level 1: Shadowing. Just building up a profile and laying groundwork.
    Level 2: Targeting. At this point attempts start on the enemy Agent's life, identity and assets. The Agent may be wounded and suffer decreased efficiency at this stage.
    Level 3: Terminated. The goons in black power armour kick in doors with shotguns. Constant gunfights result. May survive the first attempt but maybe not much more than that.

    So what makes this cool is if your Agent is hunting an enemy agent, then the enemy agent has a choice to make. Stick with the mission, see if you can achieve the objective before you get whacked? Or abandon the mission and withdraw across the border - if you do that then you're safe. You don't know who's winning that race so every time you choose to end the turn you're hoping that you can achieve what you came for before the other guy takes you out.
    So, level 2 is "lower efficiency" and Level 3 is "% chance of getting dead"? The description of level 2 has some uncertainty in it.

    For both this and Infiltrate Corporation, how do you envision this working with Natural Resting Points? Are these actions targeting any unit, or any Unit in the specific Country?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    - Deploy Superweapon. A similar 3 stage thing where you recruit gimmick henchmen, steal a giant diamond, launch the death ray satellite into orbit etc.
    Later, let's think about what might happen during earlier Stages, I feel like we can make that potentially more interesting than just a long wind-up. We should also keep in mind how much your opponent knows about the Superweapon, the Technology it's attached to, etc. at the various stages.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    A cool thing about these stages is that all of them give really interesting hooks for technology to sink into. Imagine perhaps a technology that gives you +50% resistance to the Terminated stage. That'd mean your agent would be a murderous killer cyborg who doesn't care if the other guy finds out where he is because he's gonna get the job done through anything. You'd send that guy into an area where your opponent has specialized an agent for detective work who's good at blowing through stages 1 and 2 as quickly as possible.
    Agreed. It's much clearer than "+25% forge link efficiency." There may well be some learning curve here, but this is the genre for it.

    Related to all this: What sort of upgrades might Agents have?
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    On the contrary, art appreciation is at an all-time high.
    I have negotiated with storms!!! BARGAINED WITH GODS!!!!! WHAT ARE YOU!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

    Does the Agent auto-follow their target here? And what exactly happens at Level 3?
    Yes. Agents attach to executives, but not to agents or armies - those missions are country-based. For now, flag that to test if the distinction is weird or abstract.

    E: I'm not sure if this is good because agents and armies can withdraw from dangerous situations but Execs can't. But execs are footloose and not tied down so it kinda has to be this way?

    So, level 2 is "lower efficiency" and Level 3 is "% chance of getting dead"? The description of level 2 has some uncertainty in it.
    Yes.

    For both this and Infiltrate Corporation, how do you envision this working with Natural Resting Points? Are these actions targeting any unit, or any Unit in the specific Country?
    They use the same mechanism. For instance, social media tech making cameras ubiquitous means that it might become more difficult for covert action in a country, meaning the NRP for an agent being discovered is high. This means the buildup on Counterespionage starts even before an agent is assigned to push it even harder.

    Agreed. It's much clearer than "+25% forge link efficiency." There may well be some learning curve here, but this is the genre for it.

    Related to all this: What sort of upgrades might Agents have?
    I'm increasingly thinking upgrades are going to be a really core gamefun set of mechanics. A game about manoeuvre and holding territory is more fun if the pieces are specialized.

    Pretty much every variable is a potential upgrade hook. There are three categories, though, related to the three missions.

    - Buildup happens quicker
    - Bar decreases at a slower pace after they leave
    - Bigger Stage 2 penalties
    - Bigger chance of Stage 3 mission completion
    - Reduced buildup of counterintel
    - Increased resistance to stage 3 termination
    - Increased movement speed
    - Replace stage 3 company infiltration with tech stealing rather than company destruction

    Those are the obvious variables off the top of my head, obviously sorted between the different types of actions an Agent might engage in. I'll think of some more later.
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2018-11-11 at 09:41 PM.

  9. - Top - End - #549
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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Yes. Agents attach to executives, but not to agents or armies - those missions are country-based. For now, flag that to test if the distinction is weird or abstract.

    E: I'm not sure if this is good because agents and armies can withdraw from dangerous situations but Execs can't. But execs are footloose and not tied down so it kinda has to be this way?
    It does mean that Execs need to rely on other Agents to shake off persistent punks. And yeah, given the difficulty of tying down Execs, this feels necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    They use the same mechanism. For instance, social media tech making cameras ubiquitous means that it might become more difficult for covert action in a country, meaning the NRP for an agent being discovered is high. This means the buildup on Counterespionage starts even before an agent is assigned to push it even harder.
    I was thinking more in the situation where, say, an Agent bails when Counter-Espionage is in Level 3. What happens if some other Agent wanders into the Country? What happens on the turns when there's no Agent to murder?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I'm increasingly thinking upgrades are going to be a really core gamefun set of mechanics. A game about manoeuvre and holding territory is more fun if the pieces are specialized.

    Pretty much every variable is a potential upgrade hook. There are three categories, though, related to the three missions.

    - Buildup happens quicker
    - Bar decreases at a slower pace after they leave
    - Bigger Stage 2 penalties
    - Bigger chance of Stage 3 mission completion
    - Reduced buildup of counterintel
    - Increased resistance to stage 3 termination
    - Increased movement speed
    - Replace stage 3 company infiltration with tech stealing rather than company destruction

    Those are the obvious variables off the top of my head, obviously sorted between the different types of actions an Agent might engage in. I'll think of some more later.
    We should be careful to distinguish between Upgrade effects and Technology effects. Upgrades that are too close to Schnapps-y Technology effects could come across as more boring than, say, Upgrades that change how the Unit plays.

    Then again, Technology feels like it can definitely alter how a Unit plays too. Hrm. Perhaps it'd be best to figure out this distinction once we've made more progress on a unified Technology design. Once we know the purposes of Technology, we'll be able to compare/contrast them with the purposes of Upgrades.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    I was thinking more in the situation where, say, an Agent bails when Counter-Espionage is in Level 3. What happens if some other Agent wanders into the Country? What happens on the turns when there's no Agent to murder?
    Hmmm, this raises the possibility of a micro-cycling loop. I think agents should attach to each other like Execs, then. I think the balance mechanic is that there's some sort of system for going deep into secured territory that makes it riskier to assassinate a guy there instead of out on the front lines where anything goes. Makes you think about calling off your global game of cat and mouse.

    We should be careful to distinguish between Upgrade effects and Technology effects. Upgrades that are too close to Schnapps-y Technology effects could come across as more boring than, say, Upgrades that change how the Unit plays.

    Then again, Technology feels like it can definitely alter how a Unit plays too. Hrm. Perhaps it'd be best to figure out this distinction once we've made more progress on a unified Technology design. Once we know the purposes of Technology, we'll be able to compare/contrast them with the purposes of Upgrades.
    *Nod nod*

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Hmmm, this raises the possibility of a micro-cycling loop. I think agents should attach to each other like Execs, then. I think the balance mechanic is that there's some sort of system for going deep into secured territory that makes it riskier to assassinate a guy there instead of out on the front lines where anything goes. Makes you think about calling off your global game of cat and mouse.
    Possibly, but what about when the Unit just stops tending to the Action? Our design seems to indicate that it'll be a few turns before it decays back to its NRP. What happens in that meantime? That's why I asked if this Action targeted a specific Unit, a Country, or a specific Unit in a Country; that would give us some information about what ought to happen here.

    More broadly speaking, we haven't laid down mechanics for the period between "All Units stop contributing Action Points" and "Action reaches its NRP." It's less of an issue for other Actions, but it's still something that needs to be ironed out. For these Unit v Unit Actions it's super relevant.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    Possibly, but what about when the Unit just stops tending to the Action? Our design seems to indicate that it'll be a few turns before it decays back to its NRP. What happens in that meantime? That's why I asked if this Action targeted a specific Unit, a Country, or a specific Unit in a Country; that would give us some information about what ought to happen here.

    More broadly speaking, we haven't laid down mechanics for the period between "All Units stop contributing Action Points" and "Action reaches its NRP." It's less of an issue for other Actions, but it's still something that needs to be ironed out. For these Unit v Unit Actions it's super relevant.
    I gave this problem a little more thought, and I may have answered my own question.

    I think Actions donít directly have a NRP. I think the things they affect might have a NRP. To run down the list:

    -Deploy affects a Countryís Deployment Level.
    -Confiscate and Push affect a Countryís Technology Level
    -Break and Forge Link affect Influence Links attached to a Country
    -Insurrection affect a Countryís Unrest/Insurrection Level

    Conversely, I donít think Deploy Superweapon, Infiltrate Corporation, and Counterespionage have an associated NRP. It doesnít make as much sense. If an Agent dips out of a Corp that theyíve been infiltrating, another Agent canít come in the next day and be like ďHello yes am executive Hugh Mann give access codes plz.Ē You gotta start over, man. Similarly, if the target of your sting operation flees the country, your sting operation was partly successful. The swat team isnít going to bust down the door of some random other Agent who just so happened to fly in the next day. Or, alternatively, if your Agent spearheading the operation gets recalled, well, shoot, that guy was kinda spearheading the operation so I guess weíre packing it up boys, go home.

    And really, what self-respecting 007 stops the supervillain from launching the space laser and doesnít blow up the facility while slow-walking away?

    Plus, this addresses two other points of weirdness in the mechanics:

    1) The cycling problem, like you mentioned. Itíd be weird if you made a clutch Superweapon save, only to have some other Agent mosey on in the next turn and start the clock again from where the first Agent left off. For these actions, it makes sense that there is no NRP, and when the target is dead or the acting Unit bails, the Action is no more. (With protections in place so that you can undo on the same turn without losing progress, of course.)

    2) In the same vein as our Output changes, in what strategy game are you not able to target a specific unit? I see a terrible strategy of having a bunch of rando Agents chilling in a Country acting as decoys, so that your opponent's odds of killing the Agent theyíre after go down dramatically. With increased power and individuality to the Units, it makes sense that these Actions should target them specifically. And since the Unit is the target, I donít see individual Units having NRPís. Countries are big enough to have NRP's, Units are not.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    I gave this problem a little more thought, and I may have answered my own question.
    You have said smooth and good words.

    What would you like me to work on next?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    You have said smooth and good words.

    What would you like me to work on next?
    Technology!

    We've talked a lot about it over the course of overhauling the Units and Actions; a necessity, since these systems are so closely linked. Now we need to take all those ideas and put them into a practical, comprehensive design for Technology. It might turn out that we don't need to do any more work, and once we've gathered up all the Technology nuggets we've discussed we'll have a full system ready to go. But I suspect there'll be some holes that need filling. Plus it's good to have clear purposes and reasoning laid out in one place.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    Technology!

    We've talked a lot about it over the course of overhauling the Units and Actions; a necessity, since these systems are so closely linked. Now we need to take all those ideas and put them into a practical, comprehensive design for Technology. It might turn out that we don't need to do any more work, and once we've gathered up all the Technology nuggets we've discussed we'll have a full system ready to go. But I suspect there'll be some holes that need filling. Plus it's good to have clear purposes and reasoning laid out in one place.
    Rad. Docketed for next week's thinking.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    And on my TINY SPACEMAN PAINTING FRONT: Gallery link

    I've done a tonne more stuff but not quite 100%'d yet.

    Rogue Trader Athi Hollzenstein
    AKA The Immortal God-Empress of Mankind, Ruler of Fifty Worlds
    AKA The Vile Secessionist

    Rogue Traders have a reputation for pride. In fact, the average Rogue Trader is so intensely narcissistic that it doesn't even register. Proclaiming yourself the Immortal God Empress of Mankind, declaring independence from the Imperium and outfitting your personal bodyguard of battle servitors and ogryns in the colours of the Custodian Guard... well, it registers. It's kinda up there, actually.

    Rogue Trader Athi Hollzenstein's expeditions in the Imperium Nihilus allowed her to discover a smaller cousin to the Pharos beacon that served as a backup Astronomicon during the Horus Heresy. Cut off from the Imperium at large but with a local Warp beacon at her disposal, and dealing with a panicking population who needed to know that the Imperium hadn't abandoned them, Hollzenstein thought the only logical step was to declare that she was, in fact, the Emperor of Mankind - and it wasn't like any of these rubes was going to know the difference between a Custodian Guard and a bullgryn she spray-painted gold. At some point an illusion of stability slipped into full on megalomania and Hollzenstein took to re-uniting the Dark Imperium under her own banner - by force if necessary.

    She's a known lunatic and outright heretic but a lot of local imperial forces kind of consider her the least of the evils currently consuming their half of the galaxy, so most planetary governors or Guard commanders will tacitly play along as much as their consciences/commissars allow if it means some absurdly over-equipped reinforcements riding to the rescue. But a commander of the Imperial forces needs to be extremely adept at the social game to avoid giving offence to the 'Empress' and avoid using her title at the same time. The wrong slip-up will get you challenged to a duel and that is not a fight anyone in the galaxy really wants. Despite looking like a slender waif, Trader Hollzenstein is wearing the GDP of an entire planet in terms of forcefields, archeotech and digital weapons and she can and has killed a Space Marine Chapter Master in single combat (on the tabletop, she counts-as a Custodian Shield-Captain).

    Rank and file guardsmen sometimes complain that their generals are pampered aristocrats who have never seen a real battlefield. If it means getting the help rather than the lunatic vengeance of someone like the Empress of Mankind then they might have cause to be glad for a courtly education in their leaders.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    How goes the Technology write-up? Is there anywhere a Pirate can help?
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    How goes the Technology write-up? Is there anywhere a Pirate can help?
    I went through a bit of an undiagnosed burnout over the past few weeks that I'm only recently coming out of and identifying in retrospect. This thread has been perpetually opened in a tab during that process. But I'm feeling better now and nothing gets me working like seeing that it's my turn to reply so let's give what I've got.


    Technology

    The design intention for technology is unforseen consequences. Einstein had no idea that relativity was going to result in GPS. There's no clear line between the telegraph and social media. The combustion engine seemed like a great idea until BOOM GLOBAL WARMING. Deploying a technology is playing Russian roulette and the exact effects are going to be hard to predict and hard to measure.

    So each technology has a saturation level - how ubiquitous that tech is in the country, ranging from: banned, military-only, luxury use, commercial use. Each tech has one effect for each level. The effects are not obvious even when you're getting them. Commercial effects tend to be bigger than military effects.

    There is a level of tech growth based on how much the tech is already present, and how much is present in linked countries. If a country has military robots then it's only a matter of time before that trickles down to rich people getting robot butlers. This process can be policed but you're shovelling water. Trying to get a tech out of a country is possible but hard. Random events may provide sudden and unexpected bursts of tech spread. The level of technology spread is open information and there are mapmodes for tracking it.

    Technology affects almost every variable in the game. The UI will provide a reasonable bellcurvy estimate to tell you if things are weird or if you're just unlucky.

    Technology is researched one effect at a time. This does not have to be in order. You can research the civilian effect first, decide you like it, and then saturate the country without waiting to check the mil/lux levels.

    Advanced Tech is an expensive way to add effects onto technologies. Two advanced techs can be added to any technology. These are more costly investments than discovering new effects. The use-case for advanced tech is to take a tech that's wide spread in your opponent's territory but not in yours and suddenly give it all a nasty downside - or buffing a technology already present in your own sphere. Advanced tech effects are cloaked but can be researched like any others after they've been added. The intention here is that an advanced tech will provide a short term blow but will eventually equalize - either because your opponent spreads the now toxic tech to your territory in retribution or because they uproot it. Advanced tech always applies at the Commercial level - the 'unintended consequences' it represents can be controlled through harsh regulation and taking it out of the hands of the hoi polloi.

    Most tech is modifier stuff, grog effects rather than schnapps. Schnapps effects are generally really obvious which makes it hard to ambiguity them behind 'unintended consequences'. If there is a Schnapps effect such as the classic Deploy Superweapon then you need to have to have that effect researched to take advantage of it.

    Tech flows up to units but as it's a country modifier it'll mostly affect units present in those countries at the time. Some unit upgrades may be tech-dependent and only purchasable in countries with the right tech. While having to cycle units to specific locations to upgrade them is a bit micro-y, given that miltech upgrades are the first level of effect so you can spread those techs at front-line fortress outposts it's probably okay.

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    Typing with one hand, so thoughts may be a little truncated, here we goooooooooooooooooo

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I went through a bit of an undiagnosed burnout over the past few weeks that I'm only recently coming out of and identifying in retrospect. This thread has been perpetually opened in a tab during that process. But I'm feeling better now and nothing gets me working like seeing that it's my turn to reply so let's give what I've got.
    If this ever happens again, and you need some more time, all you've gotta do is say so. Self care comes first.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    The design intention for technology is unforseen consequences. Einstein had no idea that relativity was going to result in GPS. There's no clear line between the telegraph and social media. The combustion engine seemed like a great idea until BOOM GLOBAL WARMING. Deploying a technology is playing Russian roulette and the exact effects are going to be hard to predict and hard to measure.
    The common thread in all those examples is that there was a good benefit to adopting those technologies, which then allowed those unforeseen consequences to sprout up later down the line. There's got to be a compelling reason to buy in.

    One of the ideas we'd bounced around was starting each player off with some amount of Technology information already revealed. I think along with that, we need to ensure that the benefits of Technology are immediately apparent and appealing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    So each technology has a saturation level - how ubiquitous that tech is in the country, ranging from: banned, military-only, luxury use, commercial use. Each tech has one effect for each level. The effects are not obvious even when you're getting them. Commercial effects tend to be bigger than military effects.
    I take it the Banned level has no effects?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    There is a level of tech growth based on how much the tech is already present, and how much is present in linked countries. If a country has military robots then it's only a matter of time before that trickles down to rich people getting robot butlers. This process can be policed but you're shovelling water. Trying to get a tech out of a country is possible but hard.
    Currently, our formula for Tech Growth looks something like this:

    Tech Growth = Base Growth + Push Tech + Lab Present + Unit w/Tech present + X Neighbors with adopted Tech - Ban Penalty - Confiscate Tech

    With most of those factors affected by Technology itself. Now, it sounds like our formula is:

    Tech Growth = Saturation Level + Saturation Level in Neighbors + Push Tech - Ban Penalty - Confiscate Tech

    That sound about right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Random events may provide sudden and unexpected bursts of tech spread.
    How often do these occur? Where do they occur? How much spontaneous growth are talking?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Technology affects almost every variable in the game. The UI will provide a reasonable bellcurvy estimate to tell you if things are weird or if you're just unlucky.
    We're going to need a more comprehensive list than this. I know at the least, most Actions will have Technology hooks. (In how fast Units can add points, and the effectiveness of each Stage) But what else might be affected?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Most tech is modifier stuff, grog effects rather than schnapps. Schnapps effects are generally really obvious which makes it hard to ambiguity them behind 'unintended consequences'. If there is a Schnapps effect such as the classic Deploy Superweapon then you need to have to have that effect researched to take advantage of it.
    Same as above; since this system could potential fiddle with so many variables/introduce so many different behaviors, I need to know what this system ought to be capable of.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Tech flows up to units but as it's a country modifier it'll mostly affect units present in those countries at the time. Some unit upgrades may be tech-dependent and only purchasable in countries with the right tech. While having to cycle units to specific locations to upgrade them is a bit micro-y, given that miltech upgrades are the first level of effect so you can spread those techs at front-line fortress outposts it's probably okay.
    We'll keep this in mind for when we actually tackle Upgrades. It is a little strange to have Technology that actually matters individually, since up until now each Technology was effectively a bucket of same-brand effects under a different name. Nothing inherently made Nanotech any different from Social Media.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    Typing with one hand,
    hurr hurr hurr

    If this ever happens again, and you need some more time, all you've gotta do is say so. Self care comes first.
    I know, but that's the thing about it being an undiagnosed burnout. I didn't realize it wasn't how I normally was until I came out of it.
    The common thread in all those examples is that there was a good benefit to adopting those technologies, which then allowed those unforeseen consequences to sprout up later down the line. There's got to be a compelling reason to buy in.

    One of the ideas we'd bounced around was starting each player off with some amount of Technology information already revealed. I think along with that, we need to ensure that the benefits of Technology are immediately apparent and appealing.
    I think there's a case to be made for starting with one random point of each tech revealed, and not necessarily in the same order you research it. The player always starts with military applications and works down because they're a giant faceless military industrial corporation and nuts to the sheep.

    I take it the Banned level has no effects?
    Yes.

    Currently, our formula for Tech Growth looks something like this:

    Tech Growth = Base Growth + Push Tech + Lab Present + Unit w/Tech present + X Neighbors with adopted Tech - Ban Penalty - Confiscate Tech

    With most of those factors affected by Technology itself. Now, it sounds like our formula is:

    Tech Growth = Saturation Level + Saturation Level in Neighbors + Push Tech - Ban Penalty - Confiscate Tech

    That sound about right?
    Yes.

    How often do these occur? Where do they occur? How much spontaneous growth are talking?
    This is purely a feels-y thing - like, every 20 minutes of gameplay or something? And it should be one full saturation level worth of push. Communicated through a popup and a choice - Solartech or Nanotech is going to take off, pick one. Some sort of choice is much better than an 'okay' response in gamefeel terms.

    We're going to need a more comprehensive list than this. I know at the least, most Actions will have Technology hooks. (In how fast Units can add points, and the effectiveness of each Stage) But what else might be affected?

    Same as above; since this system could potential fiddle with so many variables/introduce so many different behaviors, I need to know what this system ought to be capable of.
    Unh, writing lists is hard. I'll think about it and get back to you.

    We'll keep this in mind for when we actually tackle Upgrades. It is a little strange to have Technology that actually matters individually, since up until now each Technology was effectively a bucket of same-brand effects under a different name. Nothing inherently made Nanotech any different from Social Media.
    That's still the case?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    hurr hurr hurr
    Boo this man

    booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I know, but that's the thing about it being an undiagnosed burnout. I didn't realize it wasn't how I normally was until I came out of it.
    Ah, gotcha. Glad to hear you're coming out of that mess.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I think there's a case to be made for starting with one random point of each tech revealed, and not necessarily in the same order you research it. The player always starts with military applications and works down because they're a giant faceless military industrial corporation and nuts to the sheep.
    This brings up a previous concern I had; with only two traits to be researched per Tech (and a handful of Advanced Research options to boot) will a Player be able to get perfect information on all Technologies?

    Worth keeping an eye on this.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    This is purely a feels-y thing - like, every 20 minutes of gameplay or something? And it should be one full saturation level worth of push. Communicated through a popup and a choice - Solartech or Nanotech is going to take off, pick one. Some sort of choice is much better than an 'okay' response in gamefeel terms.
    Aye, that sounds good and doable.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Unh, writing lists is hard. I'll think about it and get back to you.
    If it helps, numbers don't matter here. What I need here is a list of behaviors that the Technology system ought to be able to support. I don't need "Stage 3 Deployment causes -50% action point generation for Insurrection." I can get by with "Add an effect to an Action Stage that slows down some other Action."

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    That's still the case?
    Hrmm. Could you explain what you mean by Tech-gated upgrades, then? It sounded to me like there were certain Upgrades that always required, say, Nanotechnology, and this would be constant and known across all games.
    Last edited by TheAmishPirate; 2018-12-03 at 06:01 PM.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    A thought: Suppose there exists a Tech Effect that gives "Double Development Level gains from Level 3 Influence Links." I can't see a way for this Tech to be adopted by a Unit, and have its effects be intuitive. Will Execs impart this effect to any level 3 Influence Link they help out with? How would such a thing be communicated? Will this take effect if a Unit with this Technology is present in a Country with level 3 Influence Links? That would line up with other, similar Tech Effects, even though it makes little sense here. Suppose my intention was for this Tech to only effect Countries that adopt it, Units do nothing here. How do you communicate that in such a way that avoids any of the previous interpretations? ("Well it said 'Country Only' so I assumed it would affect the Country the Unit was standing in.")

    I think this ought to be one of our principle guides in our thinking with respect to what should be a Tech Effect vs. a Unit Upgrade vs. a Country Bonus:

    -Tech Effects can influence Countries and/or Units. Most frequently both. If they ever affect only one of Countries or Units, then it must be absolutely, 100% clear and intuitive how that plays out.

    -Unit Upgrades influence Units. Anything that doesn't make as much sense with a Country should go here.

    -Country Bonuses influence Countries. Anything that doesn't make as much sense with a Unit should go here.

    Note: There's going to be some grey area/overlap, and I think that's fine. My observation is more about the existence of effects that cannot fit in certain categories, rather than ones that can fit into multiple buckets.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    This brings up a previous concern I had; with only two traits to be researched per Tech (and a handful of Advanced Research options to boot) will a Player be able to get perfect information on all Technologies?
    Full exploration should be midgame and AR kicking in across 1/4 of techs should be late midgame. Still should be some shuffle room come the endgame and ideally only a few slots left blank when the game ends for real.

    If it helps, numbers don't matter here. What I need here is a list of behaviors that the Technology system ought to be able to support. I don't need "Stage 3 Deployment causes -50% action point generation for Insurrection." I can get by with "Add an effect to an Action Stage that slows down some other Action."
    I am totally frickin' blanking on this . Could you phrase a different question or something?

    Hrmm. Could you explain what you mean by Tech-gated upgrades, then? It sounded to me like there were certain Upgrades that always required, say, Nanotechnology, and this would be constant and known across all games.
    No, all tech effects are random'd. Each game they're totally randomized. It's kind of the only way to do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    A thought: Suppose there exists a Tech Effect that gives "Double Development Level gains from Level 3 Influence Links." I can't see a way for this Tech to be adopted by a Unit, and have its effects be intuitive.
    Correct, that can't be an effect for a Unit to have that tech.

    Okay, see, how I'm perceiving this:

    - tech has 3 levels of distribution - military, luxury, commercial.
    - A military tech allows certain upgrades to be made to agents/armies created in that country.
    - A luxury tech allows certain upgrades to be made to executives created in that country.
    - Techs can also have country-specific effects instead of or as well as the unit upgrading techs.
    - There is some sort of 'move HQ' option where an army permanently rebases to a different country, changing where it will respawn when it is killed and the techs that will affect it. This can be done even while the unit is 'dead'.

    I think this ought to be one of our principle guides in our thinking with respect to what should be a Tech Effect vs. a Unit Upgrade vs. a Country Bonus:

    -Tech Effects can influence Countries and/or Units. Most frequently both. If they ever affect only one of Countries or Units, then it must be absolutely, 100% clear and intuitive how that plays out.
    Yes. I think that UI design can handle this. When you click on a unit you see its flag and a list of icons showing known tech effects from its base country. If you click on base country it opens a list of other valid countries to rebase it to. There's a small cooldown on rebasing a unit.

    Does this make sense?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    No, all tech effects are random'd. Each game they're totally randomized. It's kind of the only way to do it.



    Correct, that can't be an effect for a Unit to have that tech.

    Okay, see, how I'm perceiving this:

    - tech has 3 levels of distribution - military, luxury, commercial.
    - A military tech allows certain upgrades to be made to agents/armies created in that country.
    - A luxury tech allows certain upgrades to be made to executives created in that country.
    - Techs can also have country-specific effects instead of or as well as the unit upgrading techs.
    - There is some sort of 'move HQ' option where an army permanently rebases to a different country, changing where it will respawn when it is killed and the techs that will affect it. This can be done even while the unit is 'dead'.



    Yes. I think that UI design can handle this. When you click on a unit you see its flag and a list of icons showing known tech effects from its base country. If you click on base country it opens a list of other valid countries to rebase it to. There's a small cooldown on rebasing a unit.

    Does this make sense?
    Okay, I think I see what happened here. We got ourselves on two different visions for Tech/Unit interactions. I was still on the old one, and missed that you'd moved on to a different one:

    My vision: "Technologies have a bunch of effects. Whenever a Tech is adopted in a Country, all those effects are immediately present and active in any Unit from that Country, even though not every effect may work on a Unit."

    Thanqol-o-vision: "Technology generally affects Countries. When it affects Units, it does so by offering an effect-specific Upgrade at the Unit's home Country, should the Tech be adopted there."

    I gotta say? Yours definitely wins out on intuitiveness, by a country mile. It's a lot easier to signal to the player, "Hey, this Tech will offer your Unit an Upgrade, come and get it." Whereas it can be weird and confusing when Units suddenly start behaving differently because you don't have a particular Tech effect researched and that's the one that turns all your Agents blue. That said, I do have a few bits of feedback:

    1) I'm not wild about the additional hoops you have to jump through in order to give a Tech's beneficial effects to a Unit. The system was already difficult to get into, additional barriers have me jumpy. We'll likely have to bump up the power of Tech for Units just to make the trip home and monetary upgrade cost worthwhile if we take this route.

    2) What happens when a Country un-adopts a Tech, or it drops below the threshold necessary to Upgrade a Unit? What happens to all the Units who had previously snagged that Upgrade?

    3) This sounds like it's impossible to apply negative Tech effects to a Unit, since it's always optional upgrades. Is that true?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I am totally frickin' blanking on this . Could you phrase a different question or something?
    Aye, I can give it a shot.

    I can split the initial question into two smaller questions, both asked roughly for the same reason. Whenever Technology changes mechanics/variables, I have to go in and design how that works. That's a non-trivial task, and it's worse when I have to go in and retrofit things. Worst-case, I may have to rip out and rebuild an entire system. So it's really important that I know what this system needs to be capable of doing. "Change every variable" and "various Schnapps-type effects" aren't acceptable for my planning. So let's tackle each one of those separately:

    1) For Grog effects, what variables can be changed by Technology?

    2) Let's start small with Schnapps effects, and work our way up. Can you give me a list of, like, big archetypal Schnapps effects you've been envisioning while designing this system?
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    I gotta say? Yours definitely wins out on intuitiveness, by a country mile.
    Rad.

    1) I'm not wild about the additional hoops you have to jump through in order to give a Tech's beneficial effects to a Unit. The system was already difficult to get into, additional barriers have me jumpy. We'll likely have to bump up the power of Tech for Units just to make the trip home and monetary upgrade cost worthwhile if we take this route.
    Mm, the trip home might not be necessary. We're deploying drones and stuff in the middle east without having to call army groups back home for retraining.

    2) What happens when a Country un-adopts a Tech, or it drops below the threshold necessary to Upgrade a Unit? What happens to all the Units who had previously snagged that Upgrade?
    Grey it out with the notice that this technology has been banned.

    3) This sounds like it's impossible to apply negative Tech effects to a Unit, since it's always optional upgrades. Is that true?
    Hmm. I want there to be a space for negative modifiers at this level, but at the same time if the military is using a tech they're using it in a very controlled, specific way. Do I want to leave this to advanced tech undermining the upgrades? I guess that makes sense in terms of a country proliferating countermeasures to a certain tech.


    I can split the initial question into two smaller questions, both asked roughly for the same reason. Whenever Technology changes mechanics/variables, I have to go in and design how that works. That's a non-trivial task, and it's worse when I have to go in and retrofit things. Worst-case, I may have to rip out and rebuild an entire system. So it's really important that I know what this system needs to be capable of doing. "Change every variable" and "various Schnapps-type effects" aren't acceptable for my planning. So let's tackle each one of those separately:

    1) For Grog effects, what variables can be changed by Technology?
    So there's two axises here. There's the things that can be affected:
    - Currency
    - Development
    - Stability
    - Technology
    - Unit success chance
    - Resistance to unit success chance
    - Global warming

    And there's the ways in which it can be affected:
    - Natural resting point +/-
    - Speed of change towards NRP +/-
    - Fixed bonus (+1 currency)
    - Variable bonus (+10% currency)
    - % chance success or failures (assassination, conventional warfare)
    - Respawn/repair rate
    - XP gain rate
    - Discount effects (-50% cost on upgrades)

    And there is the additional layer of when it kicks in:
    - Only affects at certain tier (an Agent who is easy to discover in the first two stages but is a dog to put down in the final stage, representing a reduced monthly chance of death, tax bonus at tier 1 development)
    - Affects always
    - Affects conditionally (if an executive is present in this country, bonus X)


    I'm sure I'm missing some things...

    2) Let's start small with Schnapps effects, and work our way up. Can you give me a list of, like, big archetypal Schnapps effects you've been envisioning while designing this system?
    The two that occur to me are Superweapons and Conventional Warfare. They're the only two effects I can think of that alter the entire course of how units interact with each other on their most basic level. But brain is being supes dumb on this point, shake it a bit with your words and more stuff might come out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Mm, the trip home might not be necessary. We're deploying drones and stuff in the middle east without having to call army groups back home for retraining.



    Grey it out with the notice that this technology has been banned.



    Hmm. I want there to be a space for negative modifiers at this level, but at the same time if the military is using a tech they're using it in a very controlled, specific way. Do I want to leave this to advanced tech undermining the upgrades? I guess that makes sense in terms of a country proliferating countermeasures to a certain tech.
    In your mind, do you see this as buying one Upgrade to get all the effects of a Tech, or buying each effect separately?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    So there's two axises here. There's the things that can be affected:
    - Currency
    - Development
    - Stability
    - Technology
    - Unit success chance
    - Resistance to unit success chance
    - Global warming

    And there's the ways in which it can be affected:
    - Natural resting point +/-
    - Speed of change towards NRP +/-
    - Fixed bonus (+1 currency)
    - Variable bonus (+10% currency)
    - % chance success or failures (assassination, conventional warfare)
    - Respawn/repair rate
    - XP gain rate
    - Discount effects (-50% cost on upgrades)

    And there is the additional layer of when it kicks in:
    - Only affects at certain tier (an Agent who is easy to discover in the first two stages but is a dog to put down in the final stage, representing a reduced monthly chance of death, tax bonus at tier 1 development)
    - Affects always
    - Affects conditionally (if an executive is present in this country, bonus X)


    I'm sure I'm missing some things...
    The big one I can see currently missing is "how fast do Units add points to an Action." Call it Action Effectiveness or something.

    (Also, what are Stability and XP? I haven't seen those mechanics come up before.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    The two that occur to me are Superweapons and Conventional Warfare. They're the only two effects I can think of that alter the entire course of how units interact with each other on their most basic level. But brain is being supes dumb on this point, shake it a bit with your words and more stuff might come out.
    The big one I remember is something about adding an additional behavior to an Action after it reaches a certain stage. Was there maybe something you had in mind with that?
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    In your mind, do you see this as buying one Upgrade to get all the effects of a Tech, or buying each effect separately?
    Like one purchase adds all Social Media tech effects to that unit. If social media later turns out to be cancer then the unit is stuck with it until they ban it entirely in the country (citation: Russian soldiers in Ukraine constantly posting selfies while on covert operations)

    The big one I can see currently missing is "how fast do Units add points to an Action." Call it Action Effectiveness or something.
    Oh yes, clearly. Both flat and percentage options.

    (Also, what are Stability and XP? I haven't seen those mechanics come up before.)
    Stability is, like, the insurrection scale? Minor linguistic quirk, either stability is base of 3 (no insurrection) and reduced by stability-undermining effects, or it's 0 and reduces to -3, or something idk.

    XP is an as-yet placeholder concept that there might be space for units to level up but that is super nebulous. The entire concept of that system is extremely dependent on tummyfeels w/r/t how much the players think of those units.

    The big one I remember is something about adding an additional behavior to an Action after it reaches a certain stage. Was there maybe something you had in mind with that?
    Nothing I'd describe as Schnappsy at this stage... could you be more specific or talk about your ideas here?
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2018-12-17 at 10:32 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Like one purchase adds all Social Media tech effects to that unit. If social media later turns out to be cancer then the unit is stuck with it until they ban it entirely in the country (citation: Russian soldiers in Ukraine constantly posting selfies while on covert operations)
    Ahhhh, there we go. That totally opens up the space for negative Unit Technology Effects. I thought it was "you have to buy every effect individually", and that made no sense because why on earth would you deliberately buy a downgrade? But if it comes packaged with something tasty (and is an effect you haven't researched yet) then that fits nicely into our "unintended consequences" mindset.

    I feel we should make positive effects more common than negative effects. They show up frequently enough that there's a risk, but not so frequently that it's always a losing bet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Stability is, like, the insurrection scale? Minor linguistic quirk, either stability is base of 3 (no insurrection) and reduced by stability-undermining effects, or it's 0 and reduces to -3, or something idk.
    Gotcha. Mechanically speaking, I've been measuring this by Insurrection level, maybe we can call that Unrest. It goes from 0 to 3, which corresponds to the various levels of Insurrection. 0 is everything's fine, 3 is everything's fire. I see space for Technology to automatically futz with that; say, if you start incorporating Robotics, your workforce is displaced and discontent and now they're rioting oh no.

    This also opens up space for Deployment as well. Armies start at a higher Deployment level if the Country has adopted the associated Technology. Or Counterespionage starting at rank 1 because they've got tracking Nanomachines in the water.

    Basically, if there's any similar variable that's affected by Actions, we can have Technology change that number's starting value.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    XP is an as-yet placeholder concept that there might be space for units to level up but that is super nebulous. The entire concept of that system is extremely dependent on tummyfeels w/r/t how much the players think of those units.
    Gotcha. Mechanic for the potential future, then.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Nothing I'd describe as Schnappsy at this stage... could you be more specific or talk about your ideas here?
    The impression I got from you was that this sort of Technology effect would add some new mechanical capability to the player who discovers it. "All level 3 links in this Country cost 0 move", "Stage 3 insurrections can kill ANY enemy unit", "Pushing Technology in a Country with full saturation pushes that Tech on all neighbors", etc.

    This is honestly why I was pushing so hard to nail down what Technology is supposed to do, because this particular idea has the potential to be super thorny and weird if it's sprung on me last-minute.

    (Though, this could be real confusing to the player who hasn't discovered the Tech. Their opponent just starts breaking/making rules, and they have no idea what's going on. Perhaps it's wiser for there to be a few, clearly-defined buckets for Schnapps mechanics. It's easy to tell the player "Superweapons exist, watch out for that" rather than "Actions may not behave the same way, blame Technology." Not to mention it's a heck of a lot easier to implement.)
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAmishPirate View Post
    Ahhhh, there we go. That totally opens up the space for negative Unit Technology Effects. I thought it was "you have to buy every effect individually", and that made no sense because why on earth would you deliberately buy a downgrade? But if it comes packaged with something tasty (and is an effect you haven't researched yet) then that fits nicely into our "unintended consequences" mindset.

    I feel we should make positive effects more common than negative effects. They show up frequently enough that there's a risk, but not so frequently that it's always a losing bet.
    Yep.

    Gotcha. Mechanically speaking, I've been measuring this by Insurrection level, maybe we can call that Unrest. It goes from 0 to 3, which corresponds to the various levels of Insurrection. 0 is everything's fine, 3 is everything's fire. I see space for Technology to automatically futz with that; say, if you start incorporating Robotics, your workforce is displaced and discontent and now they're rioting oh no.

    This also opens up space for Deployment as well. Armies start at a higher Deployment level if the Country has adopted the associated Technology. Or Counterespionage starting at rank 1 because they've got tracking Nanomachines in the water.

    Basically, if there's any similar variable that's affected by Actions, we can have Technology change that number's starting value.
    Awesome.

    The impression I got from you was that this sort of Technology effect would add some new mechanical capability to the player who discovers it. "All level 3 links in this Country cost 0 move", "Stage 3 insurrections can kill ANY enemy unit", "Pushing Technology in a Country with full saturation pushes that Tech on all neighbors", etc.

    This is honestly why I was pushing so hard to nail down what Technology is supposed to do, because this particular idea has the potential to be super thorny and weird if it's sprung on me last-minute.

    (Though, this could be real confusing to the player who hasn't discovered the Tech. Their opponent just starts breaking/making rules, and they have no idea what's going on. Perhaps it's wiser for there to be a few, clearly-defined buckets for Schnapps mechanics. It's easy to tell the player "Superweapons exist, watch out for that" rather than "Actions may not behave the same way, blame Technology." Not to mention it's a heck of a lot easier to implement.)
    This kind of stuff should be in country bonii if it exists (though those ideas are very interesting) and as open information. Tech you should be able to feel the shape of it even if it's invisible, not be like 'I don't understand why any of this is happening'.

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    Default Re: Thanqol Learns To Draw Six: Stealing Time

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    This kind of stuff should be in country bonii if it exists (though those ideas are very interesting) and as open information. Tech you should be able to feel the shape of it even if it's invisible, not be like 'I don't understand why any of this is happening'.
    Agreed. If two Armies suddenly start fighting for reals, or a nuclear launch suddenly goes off, you have mechanics you can immediately point to and be like, "Well, I don't know what exactly made this happen, but I know this is how it did it."

    Alright, with that cleared up, I'm ready to call this redesign pass done. (Barring the inevitable things we discover in implementation.)

    Next step: I'm going to get to work on implementing a subset of these changes. Not all of them, because our goal here is to develop as rapidly as possible. Get a minimum viable prototype out and ready for testing, so we can see how these changes shake out. In order to keep communication going, I'll be posting notes on the decisions I'm making as I go. What I'm building, why I'm building it, why I'm not building something else, etc.

    Once I've had a chance to sit down and survey the work that needs doing, I'll give an estimate/goal of when I'd like to do another playtest.
    I'm developing a game. Let's see what happens! Complex.

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