View Full Version : unit progression


davidlallen
Jun 24, 2009, 12:06 AM
One thing that could use some thought/redesign is the unit progression. In version 1.0-1.2, the feel of multiple generations of units seems missing.

At this link (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8170076&postcount=310) is a post from deliverator with some unit progression ideas. At this post (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8193350&postcount=411) is a playtest result I wrote which discusses about the generations of units in vanilla to give some idea of what I mean. At this link (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8159434&postcount=285) is another message I wrote where I proposed a new unit progression, followed by several replies showing this was not such a good idea.

No solutions yet, any suggestions?

Deliverator
Jun 24, 2009, 01:35 AM
Koma said he was going to give the tech tree some thought. I got the impression this included reviewing the units. I'm interested to see what he comes up with.

koma13
Jun 26, 2009, 07:12 PM
Koma said he was going to give the tech tree some thought. I got the impression this included reviewing the units. I'm interested to see what he comes up with.

Focus is on early units. I want to have more divergence that we don't end up building always hovers and maula mortars. But I need another day or two before I can upload my changes... still want to do some testing and tweaking. :)

The basic idea is replacing hover units by thopters and adding a new combat type called melee. This allowed me to create following structure:

http://forums.civfanatics.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=219111&stc=1&d=1246061365

Here some more detailed infos for new/edited units:


Infantry:

Infantry (3/1)
Cost 25

+50% city defense
+first strike


Incendiary Trooper (6/1)
cost 55
replaces Infantry

+25% city defense
+first strike


Grenade Trooper (4/1)
Cost 35

+100% thopters


Missile Trooper (6/1)
cost 60
replaces Grenade Trooper

+100% thopters



Melee:

Swordsman (6/2)
cost 40
ore
req. Holy Jihad

+ignores city shields

Elite Swordsman (8/2)
cost 70
replaces Swordsman
ore
req. Water of Life

+ignores city shields
+blitz


Thopters:

1st Thopter (3/2)
cost 35
req. Desert Exploration

+ignores terrain cost
-no defensive bonus


2nd Thopter (6/3)
cost 55
soostone
req. Desert Warfare

+50% melee
+ignores terrain cost
-no defensive bonus


Siege:

Maula mortar (6/1)
cost 60
req. Imperalism

+bombards
+collateral damage



As you can see I kept units very close to bts structure but also tried to fit in already existing dune units. The thopter names are only placeholders, maybe someone has a good idea. I still have to decide which techs a needed for infantry units. When this is done I can upload my changes and we can see whether it's an improvement over current model, or not. :king:

Deliverator
Jun 28, 2009, 06:46 AM
This sounds good. Perhaps we could name the different grades of Thopter after different birds of prey: Falcon Thopter, Hawk Thopter, Eagle Thopter, etc.

To spur you on, here is an in-game test of my very much unfinished Thopter.

davidlallen
Jun 28, 2009, 08:28 AM
I was playing a few games of vanilla recently, and it occurred to me that some of the units have knife animations. Not many. But the archer uses a knife in hand to hand combat. Are there some units "we" could easily modify to look dunish, and recycle these animations?

I was also thinking about the tech tree progression of units. The problem is that in the Dune novels, as far as I can tell, there *is no* tech progression. The Fremen came to Dune with space technology, and towards the end of the books, Fremen still use knives and ride worms. So the key Civ idea of several generations of units, obsoleted by technology, has no basis in the books.

There are several mods which make extensive use of experienced units. Obviously FFH heroes are like this; they gain some XP every turn even sitting still, and get promotions. I'm not sure how well the AI chooses the promotions; possibly in FFH they have added special code in the sdk. There aren't any python hooks I could find easily, but perhaps it could be hidden in the basic python unit AI routine.

We could think about a promotion tree which allows units to develop in various directions; the tree might branch at the beginning so it would be difficult for one unit to be good at everything. Units might specialize in double movement in terrains ("horse"), city defense ("archers"), ambush ("spearmen"), etc.

Some games (Fury Road, possibly FFH) have also increased the bonus due to promotions. Instead of +10%, City Attack may give +20%. In order to get a decent effect of "obsoleting", we might need to go further like +50% on base strength.

The Alexander the Great scenario in Warlords also spreads out the key promotions into the tech tree. So you would need certain technologies before units with experience could choose certain promotions. There is some of this in vanilla, like Blitz, but in this scenario it goes much further.

This idea may be worth considering if we still run into low unit variety in the early to mid game.

Deliverator
Jun 29, 2009, 09:01 AM
I was playing a few games of vanilla recently, and it occurred to me that some of the units have knife animations. Not many. But the archer uses a knife in hand to hand combat. Are there some units "we" could easily modify to look dunish, and recycle these animations?

Human units are what I have most experience in and I have a pretty good handle on the available animations. I'm sure there are a few that would look good for knife fighting units. I am just starting a Fremen Fedaykin crysknife wielding unit...

Some assorted ideas on and around unit progression/tech tree

1. In terms of tech progression, you are right there is little in the Dune book, but the Dune saga taken as whole does covers many thousands of years. Arrakis is transformed from a desert planet to a paradise in that time (Terraforming Victory anyone?) and there is progress in other ways than the purely technological. There are even examples of invention in the original Dune book, for example Piter de Vries invents the residual poison.

2. I think the Dune universe as a feat of the imagination is probably second only to Tolkein's Middle Earth. So there is plenty of inspiration and ideas to draw on there, BUT we should be too constrained by theme. This guide (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=173061) by Kael is great and vital reading. Especially note the Danger of Flavor section. The Westwood Dune games took plenty of liberties and it didn't hurt their popularity. I am confident that we can create the Dune atmosphere graphically, so we need to make sure any new mechanics are fun to play and work well. We don't need to include everything from the books and we don't need to be afraid of inventing stuff if needs be. Perhaps when Keldath is less busy, we could come up with some rough design or roadmap for the mod.

3. Think about FfH2 - the lower half of the tech tree is not really tech, but magic. The Dune universe effectively features magic too, using the term wierding. Although, there is not much progress in terms of technology in the Dune story - there is a lot of development in terms of wierding. Paul and Jessica teach massive numbers of Fremen the wierding way, drastically improving their combat effectiveness. We could have the tech unlocked promotions you suggest representing different wierding abilities.

4. I think there is no reason not to have better tanks, better thopters, better artillery, through time a la Westwood, but having expanded unit promotions unlockable with technology is a great idea too.

5. With regards to heroes/super units, this post (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8177619&postcount=345) and this post (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8177741&postcount=347). It seems Keldath has plans for some sort of super units which I would definitely welcome. I really like that slight role-playing aspect of FfH2, it makes you care about your experienced units and they become real assets to be protected and deployed carefully.

6. A bit specific perhaps, but I would like the Fremen to be able to ride worms early on, but only be able to use them as sand sea transport units. This would give them an advantage in terms of being able to settle more widely. They would only be able to create attack worms later on in the game.

Side note: I think the FfH2 team have a rule of minimal-Python mostly-SDK implementation for performance reasons - that is probably why you can't find any Python code.

davidlallen
Jul 04, 2009, 11:54 AM
I made an experiment where I changed thopters to a 2nd domain sea unit and ai start spamming thopters... I'm eagerly waiting for cephalo's new map script to see if that is leading to an improvement. Else I would have to look into sdk to reduce that or work with AI_Weight but I would prefer a solution without these arrangements.

The hover spam is also caused by the AI seeing storms and worms as dangerous. I hope that my current project of making these map-only effects will solve this. Of course so far today I have spent 3 hours reading/writing posts on the forum and about 20 minutes working on the map-only effect :-(

Ahriman
Jul 04, 2009, 12:14 PM
Paul and Jessica teach massive numbers of Fremen the wierding way, drastically improving their combat effectiveness

In the movie. Regarded as heresy by many book fans.
I'd really keep away from too much magicky.... type stuff, at least as far as impact on combat.

Which reminds me: why are Honored Matres in this mod as a civic? They're a few thousand years too soon, and totally out of the setting flavor.
Plus, those books sucked; I'd really really suggest keeping this mod focused around the first couple of Dune Books, they have the cool setting that the prequels also mined (they're also good sources), the later stuff just gets bizarre and somewhat offtrack.


Of course so far today I have spent 3 hours reading/writing posts on the forum

Sorry :-)

davidlallen
Jul 04, 2009, 12:17 PM
Paul and Jessica teach massive numbers of Fremen the wierding way, drastically improving their combat effectiveness
In the movie. Regarded as heresy by many book fans. I'd really keep away from too much magicky.... type stuff, at least as far as impact on combat.

In the books, Jessica and Paul teach the Fremen some combat maneuvers also. I kind of like the idea of RM's who can teach things like ambush and combat effectiveness. We'll just leave out the part about shouting the right word and causing an explosion. That *is* heresy.

Deliverator
Jul 04, 2009, 01:51 PM
Completely right. The thing I don't like is that they replaced wierding with the wierding modules. If anything, with that, they took the mysticism of the books and tried to make it into something more scientific. Look up 'wierding' in the appendix of Dune - it is very much Frank Herbert. Personally, my priority is be faithful to the books first. If we use imagery from the films, TV and games it is only because they are the main sources of imagery available.

I'm not sure all the last three Frank Herbert books sucked. People say that Heretics of Dune is pretty good - I need to get around to reading it. The reason why it is handy to have material over thousands of years of the Dune universe is, as david pointed out earlier in the thread, there is not much tech progression if you base everything on the first book. That said, from what I've read about Heretics and the last three books, technology effectively regresses after Leto II...

Ahriman
Jul 04, 2009, 03:50 PM
I think technology basically regresses *during* Leto II. Enforced stagnation, little travel between worlds, etc.
Its been a while since I read them, but I don't remember seeing anythnig I liked in Heretics or the others.

Reverend Mothers having weirding is one thing; being able to teach it en masse to combat troops is another.

But I think the original Dune (and sequel) and then the House Atreides/Harkonnen/Corrino books are probably the best and most accessible places to mine usable stuff for this kind of setting/timeframe.

Somethnig else that could be intersting to see; the Conclave of Lords (I forget if thats the right name) as something a la UN. A Conclave ban on atomics is incredibly canon.....

Part of what I love about the setting is that there are all these different power groups who all think they're in charge; and they're both right, and wrong. The Guild, the Conclave, the Emperor, the Bene Gesserit.... all have a piece of the pie, but are reliant on the others.

Also:

So the key Civ idea of several generations of units, obsoleted by technology, has no basis in the books.

Yes, true, but: it works. Its a good gameplay mechanic that is fun to use. A tech tree with new stuff and multiple generations of units is pretty hard to avoid using the civ engine.
The AI understands it and uses it well; a system based on promotions and unit preservation may not get used well by the AI.
I'd leave it alone.

Infantry/melee/thoptor sounds good, but still a little shallow; I think you need to add in some more types.

The basic unit roles from civ work pretty well;
City defender (archer)
City attacker (swordsmen)
Anti-city attacker and anti-anti-mobile unit (axemen, crossbow)
Mobile unit (horsemen, later splits into armor and aircraft)
Anti-mobile unit (spearman, SAM/AT infantry)
Artillery (catapult)

Why are melee units 2 moves but ranged infantry aren't? Doesn't quite make sense.

So I'd consider:

1 move:
Infantry (city defense)
Grenadiers, Bursegs/Saudakar (city attack shock troops)
Thoptor (aircraft, anti-bladesmen)
Sand rover/quad/scorpion (mobile, anti-artillery)
Bladesmen (anti city attack, anti-missile use)
Missile trooper (anti-mobile, anti-air)
Artillery.

keldath
Jul 06, 2009, 12:29 PM
hey guys,

i was thinking of adding some hero units - like special squads, that has extra power and as unique world units.

any suggestions on names/tech positions ?

also - how about some more techs?

davidlallen
Jul 07, 2009, 06:42 PM
On some other thread today we were discussing about airlift and carryalls, and whether they should be present in the early game. That is more about unit progression so I am following up here.

Koma has pointed out that early game attacks are hard without roads. One obvious approach for faster movement is waiting until hover tech. Another approach is to add airlift and carryalls to the early game.

But, there is a canonical example in the books of early game fast transport. Sandworms. If we assume that there was some apocalypse and bunch of people got stranded on the planet without much tech, there is some stuff they would be unable to build until they rediscovered it. However, maker hooks are what, basically curved metal poles. Not very complicated.

We have been thinking that the two Fremen civs should be the only ones that should have access to worm travel. But, maybe that is getting in the way of good gameplay.

What do you think about a unit which is very similar to a galley, and carries two foot units such as settler, warrior, worker. Maybe the Fremen can be the only civ with *advanced* units that can travel by worm. Obviously tanks cannot, and I could argue that heavy infantry cannot either.

It is possible to borrow the mechanic of hunters, or slaves, where a unit would attack an animal and enslave it if the attack succeeds. But I do not think that is needed. Worms are huge. I don't think we should give scouts a +10,000% bonus vs animals just so they can do this attack.

Right now there is a thumper promotion which works; it summons a worm. (Possibly this broke during the Patch Frenzy of this week, but it works in 1.2.3.) Perhaps we can make a special case where if the worm attacks a plot with a thumper and a unit with the thumper promotion, a galley unit appears. We would have to move the thumper enabling tech much earlier.

Also, we might want a unit art for Worm Rider which shows a worm traveling above ground. The existing wormsign would still work for wild worms, but "galley worms" would be above ground.

Ahriman
Jul 07, 2009, 08:19 PM
I'd vote strongly against letting non-Fremen ride sand worms. Horribly unfluffy.
If I had a vote :-)

I think its better to leave the back-story vague, and just go for a general Dune-themed civ experience, rather than creating some non-canon apocalypse which is going to have lots of plot-holes anyway.

I don't think early-early game combat is a high priority, but if it is, then:
a) Overstuff the map with civs, so that starting places are much closer.
b) Create some 2-move skimmer or buggy transports if needed, or just some early game sand buggy units that can cross coastal desert tiles.
c) Realize that its ok for some civs to be better in the early game; I'd argue that Fremen should be powerful in the early game and as infantry raiders, but weaker in the late game with less mechanical stuff.

Deliverator
Jul 08, 2009, 12:47 AM
I agree with Ahriman here. Allowing non-Fremen civs to ride worms would just be wrong and counter to most newcomers expectations if they know the books/film.

I also think the backstory should be left vague, but that doesn't prevent us from working on the basis that somehow these Houses find themselves on Arrakis with zero tech. Having them arise naturally makes a lot of things not make sense, in particular, the role of the Spacing Guild. And I think we gain a lot if the homeworlds can feature in the game.

Create some 2-move skimmer or buggy transports if needed, or just some early game sand buggy units that can cross coastal desert tiles.

I think we should just invent something to plug the hole. This is one instance where we might have to go outside the books. So, a low tech way to get around when you have desert and lots of wind... Kite Buggies!

http://www.wayfaring.info/wp-content/uploads/2007/04/kite-buggying.jpg

We can create a more primitive Dunish version, or perhaps a bigger one like a dhow with wheels.

http://photosbymartin.com/images/pcd0366/dhow-sunset-65.3.jpg

Maybe Sand Dhow would a good name. This could be your galley replacement. What do you guys think?

davidlallen
Jul 08, 2009, 08:07 AM
I could see that for fast scouts. But moving whole armies that way?

So far the best bet seems like making it a Fremen UU and accepting that other civs will have a hard time with early game attacks.

I will add the "attack thumper => worm rider" code in python, it should be an easy change.

Deliverator
Jul 08, 2009, 08:34 AM
Ahh, where's your sense of fun...

Will it be possible to upgrade these Transport Worms to some sort of Attack Worms later.

Ahriman
Jul 08, 2009, 09:17 AM
I would suggest that with higher techs, Fremen get better and better at worm capture and so can ride successively larger Worms. So a low level low strength low movement transport worm can uprgade to high movement med strength transport worms and then to huge attack worms in the late game.

koma13
Jul 08, 2009, 12:00 PM
David, can the AI handle the thumpter? Else it's a bit pointless to extend that concept.

Considering your apocalyptic talk: you guys are aware of the fact that I plan to introduce the first thopter with desert exploration (it's the chariot). :p

Infantry/melee/thoptor sounds good, but still a little shallow; I think you need to add in some more types.

Infantry/melee/thopter are unit combat types not unit classes.

Why are melee units 2 moves but ranged infantry aren't? Doesn't quite make sense.

In general I want to increase movement points to compensate the lack of roads. Infantry units have much more armaments than melee units (only a sword and a desert suit). Also infantry units are mainly intended for defense where melee units will be involved in attacks and therefore have a larger distance to cover.

Koma has pointed out that early game attacks are hard without roads.

No, no. Again, my problem is that it's very hard to efficiently manage an empire without roads (eg. workers, defense). I have a worker in one corner of my empire and want to build an improvement in another corner 20 tiles away. What I am supposed to do? Waiting 10-15 turns until worker arrives? That is pretty lame. An additional transporter won't help. To much micromanagement and AI will never use it. Airlift is a solution to that problem but it comes way to late. :sad:

davidlallen
Jul 08, 2009, 12:17 PM
Again, my problem is that it's very hard to efficiently manage an empire without roads (eg. workers, defense). I have a worker in one corner of my empire and want to build an improvement in another corner 20 tiles away. What I am supposed to do? Waiting 10-15 turns until worker arrives?

Part of this is unavoidable with archipelago maps. You have to get a galley over to that worker to move him to a different island. Granted it is a little worse without roads. At the time I removed roads, we were using an all-land map, and I strongly object to permanent roads through deep desert. But now that we are using an ocean map, putting back roads on "land" but not coast/ocean seems OK.

It is a small xml change; I think all you need to do is add back the BUILD_ROAD worker action, and choose an appropriate prereq tech. If you do that you may as well remove the TerrainTrades for the land terrains in techinfos. I recommend to leave the TerrainTrades on coast and ocean or else civs will never be able to trade.

If we add roads on land, but not ocean, you will still need some way to get workers across desert. Will that be enough of an improvement?

koma13
Jul 08, 2009, 12:46 PM
David, I didn't mentioned with a single word that I want to have roads back in game. :)

davidlallen
Jul 08, 2009, 12:56 PM
There may be many ways to achieve faster movement. You suggested airlift, deliverator suggested sand dhows, I suggested worms, and each one of us has disagreed with one of the suggestions. I was only saying that another possible solution is to put back roads.

The civfans site seems to be having some trouble staying up in the last hour. I am getting a lot of disconnects.

Deliverator
Jul 08, 2009, 02:14 PM
Considering your apocalyptic talk: you guys are aware of the fact that I plan to introduce the first thopter with desert exploration (it's the chariot).

I think the vague mysterious apocalypse idea actually makes more sense of early thopters. In the books, think of the position the Atreides are in after the Harkonnen attack. They have very little of anything left. All our Houses can be in a similar position at the beginning of the game. Also in the books, the Emperor has weapons/equipments caches scattered all over the planet. If anyone asks us then the build time of the early thopters is just making these hidden cache thopters operational. The factions retain the knowledge to fly them. That is basically what happens with the Atreides/Fremen in the book.

It sounds like it is faster worker movement that Koma wants. If it is getting workers across deep desert in the early game, then I think kite buggies/sand dhows is fun and fits the bill. We can't be too worried about realism on this mod. Quote from the book: "Aircraft capable of sustained wing-beat flight in the manner of birds" - not especially realistic.

koma13
Jul 09, 2009, 05:32 PM
2 questions:

1) Can anyone tell me a little more about the strategical resources we have in dw? I try to decide which resources are required for unit training but I don't have a clue what soostone, crystals and the other resources (ok, ore I can guess) are used for in the books.

2) What is up with the deep harvester? It was moved further down the tech tree in one of the last updates. Why? And do we really need to types of workers?

Thx!

davidlallen
Jul 09, 2009, 05:50 PM
1) Can anyone tell me a little more about the strategical resources we have in dw? I try to decide which resources are required for unit training but I don't have a clue what soostone, crystals and the other resources (ok, ore I can guess) are used for in the books.

I am afraid there is not much "design" behind the current strategic resources, nor is there much guidance in the books. The strategic early game resources in vanilla are horses, bronze and iron; these are all initially hidden and are required to build units. In the later game we have oil and uranium. In DW currently, there are soostone, crystal and ore for the early game, and plaz, iridium and plasteel for the late game. I did not find much logic behind these when I started, and I am afraid there is not much logic behind them now.

2) What is up with the deep harvester? It was moved further down the tech tree in one of the last updates. Why? And do we really need to types of workers?

In 1.2.3 I gave the worker the ability to create spice harvesters. With this, you could argue there is no need at all for the deep harvester. It can create a desert compound, but that is not used for anything really. I could have deleted the deep harvester; I did not have any strong reason to leave it around. Similarly there is the "former" unit, short for transformer I guess, which is used for the various terraforming actions. Both the former and the deep harvester could be eliminated and I don't think anybody would miss them.

koma13
Jul 09, 2009, 05:58 PM
Ok, thank you. Now I only have to do the promotions and a changelog , then I finally can upload my work. :)

David, do you think there is an easy way in wormai (python) to tell the worm ai to ignore thopters (better all units that have bIgnoreTerrainCost)? I looked into that function but I see only code for improvements and the thumper. I tried to change that in the sdk but I ended up with worm completly ignoring the stack/group when a thopter is at present.

davidlallen
Jul 09, 2009, 06:20 PM
Part of that is easy and part is hard. The easy part is to make the worm not be attracted to units with that xml flag. The hard part is, for a mixed stack which the worm is attacking, to ensure that the worm picks only units without that flag to attack. I do not think python provides a way to indicate which unit in a stack to attack; the game engine picks the one which has the highest defense against the attacker.

However, as I recall in the SciFi miniseries, when Duke Leto lands his thopter near the harvester which is about to be eaten, the worm comes awfully close to swallowing the thopter out of the air. This is for dramatic effect, but perhaps it is not so bad if the thopter could be attacked by the worm.

Is there a standard way to indicate whether units should be skipped by certain attackers? I guess FFH Marksman does this, but that is kind of specialized.

koma13
Jul 09, 2009, 06:37 PM
Part of that is easy and part is hard. The easy part is to make the worm not be attracted to units with that xml flag. The hard part is, for a mixed stack which the worm is attacking, to ensure that the worm picks only units without that flag to attack. I do not think python provides a way to indicate which unit in a stack to attack; the game engine picks the one which has the highest defense against the attacker.

You are right. I remember there is some getBestDefender function somewhere in the sdk source.

However, as I recall in the SciFi miniseries, when Duke Leto lands his thopter near the harvester which is about to be eaten, the worm comes awfully close to swallowing the thopter out of the air. This is for dramatic effect, but perhaps it is not so bad if the thopter could be attacked by the worm.

Well, the problem in that scene was that the thopter had too much load and therefore needed more time to gain a height that is safe. In general I would say that thopters can easily outmaneuver sandworms.

Deliverator
Jul 10, 2009, 12:41 AM
In 1.2.3 I gave the worker the ability to create spice harvesters. With this, you could argue there is no need at all for the deep harvester. It can create a desert compound, but that is not used for anything really. I could have deleted the deep harvester; I did not have any strong reason to leave it around. Similarly there is the "former" unit, short for transformer I guess, which is used for the various terraforming actions. Both the former and the deep harvester could be eliminated and I don't think anybody would miss them.

Agreed. I'd still like to see the Desert Worker upgrade to Worker Carryall after Carryall becomes available. I want to be able to place Harvesters with my Carryall for Dune authenticity.

keldath
Jul 10, 2009, 06:24 AM
i think the ai builds tons of medium hovers...why?

koma13
Jul 10, 2009, 07:23 AM
i think the ai builds tons of medium hovers...why?

I worked on that, wait until I'll upload my early unit balancing patch. :)

keldath
Jul 10, 2009, 07:27 AM
ahh cool koma !

davidlallen
Jul 10, 2009, 09:30 AM
i think the ai builds tons of medium hovers...why?

We have seen before that this "hover spam" is due to the AI seeing the storms and worms in the ocean as threats, so it builds a huge number of ocean attack units. I made this a little better by making the storms defensive only, and by only putting sandworms of an appropriate strength. Can you please mouse-over the sandworms you see on the map, and tell me what is their combat strength? In the early game they have strength 20, but they can go up to 80. If this code is not working quite right and putting all 80's, this may cause the "hover spam" to come later in the game.

But let us also see what happens with koma's new units.

Deliverator
Jul 20, 2009, 09:11 AM
Our unit combat classes could use some rationalisation/refinement I think. These are the combat types we have:

Infantry
MELEE
LIGHT INFANTRY
HEAVY INFANTRY
BURSEG (A bit of a bucket for late units)

Siege
MAULA

Land Vehicles
ROVERS
SCORPION (Tanks)

Aircraft
THOPTER
HOVER
HORNET
TRANSPORT

1) Do we need separate categories for Light Infantry and Heavy Infantry? Isn't just having better and better Infantry units enough?
2) What do we do about Burseg? I don't particularly like it being a unit class. Perhaps we should have a Hero group for powerful late game units.
3) I'm really not sure that having three different sorts of flying combat craft is warranted. What is the significant difference between Thopters, Hovers and Hornets aside from their means of propulsion perhaps?
4) Could we rename Scorpion to Armor? (see I speak American too)

See this csv (http://forums.civfanatics.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=221271&d=1247855414) (which can be loaded as a spreadsheet) for the full list of current Dune Wars units (1.3.6).

keldath
Jul 20, 2009, 09:43 AM
hey d',

1. its possible to unite the infantry tag, i separated then cause its easier to define combat bonuses to the various units more specifically. but it possible to unite.

2. well - their first goal was to be units that can cross deep deserts and land aswell,
now its just a unit that acts as main city raiders , scorpions are more for combat support (if i remember right).
3. thopters - gunship units that can travel both land and sandsea/desert -some should be allowed to travel onto deep desert.

hornets - air unit basis - they act as aircrafts and carry air missions.

hovers - acts as ships like in the vanilla, though we should change their name to suspenders.
shouldnt be allowed on land but its logical to allow them to enter land as well.

transports - obvious.

4. mmm.....scorpion to armor...i can lie and say i like this...cause i wanna have distinct units from the vanilla, perhaps another name for tank like units? anyone thinks like me?


one of the things i like the most in a mod, that with units you have a veriety to choose from,
when in a certain era - you dont have to build just one kind of unit to attack with - like in the vanilla that you get tank - you build only tank to assault,
i much rather have two types of units - two types of tanks - one with this type of advantages and the other with that type of values.

i like a rock paper scissor mechanism, that you army must be consists of more types of units,
so you wont stick just to one - like modern armor in vanilla...
its much more fun, and besides units are cool.

as for the combat types them self,
it depends on the art we have availble right?

how about we spread the unit and combats in a more detailed version of what i suggest,
make a more clear way to have diversity of unit classes,
like rovers are meant to be city defenders,
scorpions are meant to attack other units and aid in city attack
burseg/another name are meant to be mainly for attacking cities
thopters - scout and anti infantry
hovers - sea units
hornet air assault.
mhula - siege units

:)

these are my thought.

Lord Tirian
Jul 20, 2009, 10:01 AM
...perhaps another name for tank like units? anyone thinks like me?I think we need some flavour thread to avoid these gameplay/flavour cross-discussions! :D

But I agree, "tank" or "armour" doesn't fit (nor does "scorpion", I think). The Dune universe has rather metaphorical, yet concise and descriptive names instead of contemporary names, like:

Carryall (instead of air transporter, lifter or so)
Harvester (instead of something like extraction crawler)
Heighliner (reminiscent of high line or something, it just sounds sensible - whereas other sci-fi might use something like "Emperor Class", long-range cruiser or something)
Lasguns (a nice contraction - instead of laser guns, beam weaponry etc.)

The list goes on and on. I think we can emulate that style, but we do need some creativity and brainstorming for that.

Cheers, LT.

keldath
Jul 20, 2009, 10:10 AM
lastank :)

davidlallen
Jul 20, 2009, 10:18 AM
But I agree, "tank" or "armour" doesn't fit (nor does "scorpion", I think).

I like scorpion. When I looked at the units, I realized it was "desert tanks", but at least the scorpion is a desert animal. I'd rather not use generic "armor". If somebody can suggest another good term, that is fine too. "Lastank" seems unsafe since all you need is a small shield generator to self-destruct it.

Deliverator
Jul 20, 2009, 10:21 AM
I actually prefer the name Scorpion myself, thinking about it, let's keep it for now.

Also, if you look at the spreadsheet. Some of the unit classes only have a small number of units and some have many. This might be OK, I'm just pointing it out.

We could rename Bursegs to Shock Troops, Assault Troops, something like that.

as for the combat types them self, it depends on the art we have availble right?

I'd rather get the concepts/mechanics right, and then make the art. If we make art and then the game design changes that work may be wasted. There are plenty of good units around to be placeholders. Get good fun, flavourful, game mechanics and then the art will be the icing on the cake.

Ahriman
Jul 20, 2009, 11:32 AM
I have no objection to Scorpion.
Some other possibilities; Carapace, Extoskeleton, Aegis, Battletron, Stinger, Ripper, Shell, Hull, Stormtread

There needs to be a lot of rationalization between the various units and tech tiers. There are lot of useless units, or units that are rapidly surpassed by other units of similar tech. For example, the lasgun infantry at strength 12 is only a short distance behind the strength 25 al-lat.

The 12 strength 4 move medium hover is only 1 tech behind the strength 10 2 move light scorpion. The medium hover is far too effective a unit; land-based units like infantry and scorpions should have higher strength for similar tech levels than units like thopters and hovers that can enter desert tiles.

The Al-Lat and medium scorp are very similar.

Medium scorps are a 1 move unit with blitz (which is redundant).

Rovers as city defense units are weird.

Rollers and scorpions need to be thought about; is one heavily armored, the other light? Whats the difference?

Lord Tirian
Jul 20, 2009, 11:56 AM
Some other possibilities; Carapace, Extoskeleton, Aegis, Battletron, Stinger, Ripper, Shell, Hull, StormtreadSome ideas I had:
Gear, Guardian, Breaker, War Machine, Bulk of War, Havocmaker.

EDIT: Another idea that just came to me: Hauberk - has something martial about it! :)

Cheers, LT.

keldath
Jul 20, 2009, 11:56 AM
I have no objection to Scorpion.
Some other possibilities; Carapace, Extoskeleton, Aegis, Battletron, Stinger, Ripper, Shell, Hull, Stormtread

Guardian - i like it as well,

nice, scorpion is my first pref', but - battleron is cool, ripper also, but scorp' is a desert creature :)

shock troopers are nice as well,

we can replace burseg into infantry unit type that are super stronger then normal infantry - the kind that can destroy tanks .

also,
i think each class need to have at least - 3+ unit classes.
my original design was -light - medium - heavy to each type.

each need to have purpose - dont want useless...

roller is a rover type - original plan - city defense unit.

scorpions - heavy assault

burseg - city attackers.

Ahriman
Jul 20, 2009, 12:20 PM
roller is a rover type - original plan - city defense unit.

It makes no sense to me that a rover is a city defense unit. Even the name Rover implies a high movement field skirmisher.

To me, roller actually implies a city assault unit rather than a field-superiority unit; I think the name showed up in some other scifi; pirates attacking a planet had infantry and rollers, which were kindof mechanized battering ram/apc type things, that were designed to be heavily armored and punch through defenses, and then let the infantry out.

Why are melee units 2 moves but ranged infantry aren't? Doesn't quite make sense.

The Al-Lat (strength 25) comes shortly after the lasgun trooper (strength 12) but well before the lasgun soldier (strength 24).

The basic unit roles from civ work pretty well;
City defender (archer)
City attacker (swordsmen)
Anti-city attacker and anti-anti-mobile unit (axemen, crossbow)
Mobile unit A: field superiority (knight, armor)
Mobile unit B: skirmisher (horsemen, horse archer)
Anti-mobile unit (spearman, AT infantry)
Anti-air unit (SAM trooper)
Artillery (catapult)


So I'd consider:
City defender; soldier, infantry, infantry 2, al-lat
City attacker; melee infantry/shock troops. Raider, bladesman, elite bladesman, lasgun trooper, saudarkar (these units ignore city walls)
Anti-city attacker; thopter, battle thopter, assault thopter. Can't capture cities, can travel in deserts. Grenadiers.
Mobile A: 2 move mechanized units, high strength. Scorpions.
Mobile B: 2-3 move mechanized units with lower strength but withdraw chances, bonuses vs artillery. Quad, Sand Rover, Dune Buggy, etc.
Anti-mobile A: Burseg, Saudakar, Al-Lat. Anti-tank units.
Anti-mobile B: missile troopers. Anti-thoptor, anti-aircraft. Intercept chances.
Aircraft. Hornet (fighter), assault hornet (bomber).
Artillery. Maula siege.

Ahriman
Jul 20, 2009, 02:05 PM
Medium thopter has only 1 move? should be 3. Also, thats a loooong way in the tech tree between the battle thopter and the medium thopter. Should be shorter.

Medium hornet has no intercept mission?

koma13
Jul 20, 2009, 02:13 PM
Just a general note: If you ever want to have workers loaded on transports you will have to add 'unitai_worker_sea' to all transports.

keldath
Jul 20, 2009, 02:24 PM
mm good to know koma13, thanks.

ahriman,
your right, i saw that, ill rework some stuff after deliverator gets patch 1.3.8.

edorazio
Jul 20, 2009, 07:03 PM
I understand you guys are changing up the units and the mid-late game techs. Nonetheless, I might as well report my mid-late game concerns regarding unit progression.

There is a startling jump in unit power with the tech Cooling Systems yielding the unit Heavy Hover (strength 35). I think the next most powerful unit you can REASONABLY acquire before this is actually the Medium Hover at strength 12. The tech line to Cooling Systems is very attractive, so I think it is one of those techs a human player (at a minimum) would probably beeline in the current tech tree once the appropriate era is reached. It is almost universally the first of the "Tech level 3" units you can get. In fact, it appears before Tech level 2 units appear in other lines (i.e. burseg, roller, etc.)

Point is, either the unit needs to be toned down or it should be pushed a little further up the tech line. Actually, I dont think the unit should really be toned down because it is the weakest of the T3 units; if it is reduced in power, it would be effectively useless at the late game stage (after all, heighliners are beasts capable of defending themselves). Thus, keeping in mind I understand this is fairly hard to balance overall because other T2 units reach 25 strength (again, burseg comes to mind off the top of my head), I think the Heavy Hover comes a few techs too soon.

Also, I second the suggestion of making an infantry line ending in the Acolyte as the primary defensive line. Additionally, I feel like the Soldier unit is kind of a waste. I never build them because it is easy enough to get the tech for infantry, who are much more powerful. Eliminating the soldier barely affects the current infantry progression:

Infantry (3) -> Infantry II (6) -> Lasgun soldier (12) -> Al-lat (25) -> (if you choose to add it) Acolyte (42).

Unless it is too much of a pain to eliminate (because of, say, the Fremen UU), I think you can safely eliminate it.

Ahriman
Jul 20, 2009, 07:07 PM
I think the medium hover and heavy hover need to have their strengths toned down in general. High movement units that can cross deserts shouldnt' be higher strength than their much more limited mobility infantry/armor units of similar tech levels.

edorazio
Jul 20, 2009, 07:18 PM
True, however if the AI can intelligently use transporters then I don't mind so much. This mod is great in having the transporters themselves being very high strength, the top end being even higher than the Heavy Hover. Like I said, the 35 strength heavy hover is the weakest of all by a decent margin, but it just comes so soon.

10 strength 25 withdrawal
30 strength 40 withdrawal

maybe? I think the idea of withdrawal suits them well...

Ahriman
Jul 20, 2009, 08:55 PM
The 35 strength heavy hover is competing mostly with ~strength 24 infantry. Its way too strong.

I'd avoid giving them big withdraw chances too. Leave those for actual skirmish units, like rollers.

Scorpions should be high strength field units
Infantry should be cheap city defenders or shock troops or specialist AT/AA.
Rovers and rollers should be mobile skirmishers with withdraw chance.
Hovers should be there as mobile naval units, but weaker in combat because of this.

There should be a design cost to any features; if you have all-terrain capability and high movement, something else has to give.

People complained a lot about medium and heavy hover spam by the AI and said it was because of bugs (partly it was), but its also really just demonstration of very effective aI; the AI recognized that these were the best units by far.

Deliverator
Jul 21, 2009, 01:45 AM
I'm thinking of the following renames in 1.3.8 (-> indicates renaming):

DEFENDERS
Light Infantry -> Guard/Guardian : city defense, Anti-Air, Anti-Tank later on..
(Could split this into Guard, Anti-Air, Anti-Tank)

CITY ASSAULT

Melee : the early city assault units. Melee units move quicker because they carry less kit.

Heavy Infantry -> Shock Troops : (Sardukaar, Fedaykin, etc are in this category)
I consider these to be upgraded Melee troops (Bladesmen). The Sardukaar and Fedaykin most commonly fight with swords and crysknives respectively, so this is true to the books. In general, I'd like this class to be mostly melee fighters, because that makes the mod distinctive and captures the important of melee combat from the books.

Burseg -> Elite (Tricky one since it doesn't get more Elite that the Sardukaar and Fedaykin, but I guess this could become the Hero units - or we move Sard and Fed into this category. I want to loose the name Burseg which is not appropriate for all factions - if anyone has a better idea...)

LAND VEHICLES

Rover -> Rapid Strike - Quads, Buggies, etc. Mobile skirmishers. For fans of the Westwood games...

Scorpion : Stays as it is, tanks, etc.

Are there any Roller units in the latest version? The unit spreadsheet David produced doesn't seem to have any. I don't think they are distinct enough from Scorpion and we need a better name. Roller makes me think of painting and decorating. I reckon scrap them and have a more powerful-than-Scorpion field superiority vehicle class for the later game.

AIR VEHICLES

Thopter -> Anti-City Assault Infantry, Rapid Movement, Scouting.

Hover -> Suspensor Craft (?) (I do think that using Holtzman fields for aircraft would still drive the worms into a killing frenzy, but I'll go with the majority): mobile naval units

Still not a huge fan of Hornet - can we have separate categories for Interceptor and Bomber if that is going to be the use of the unit.

Ahriman
Jul 21, 2009, 06:07 AM
I would make Bursegs generic high end shock troops; Fedaykin and Saudakar should be Fremen and Imperial UUs.

Re: scorpions; I think we're missing Devastator as a Harkonnen UU heavy scorpion?

I would make rollers high-end skirmish vehicles.

I would make sure that there are high end city defense infantry distinct from AA and AT infantry.

SwordOfJustice
Jul 21, 2009, 07:23 AM
This is really important work for any Civ mod. The balance between units and unit progression are foundations for a fun strategic wargame.

I believe every faction should have some custom units with particular strengths, as it is in normal Civ, and I also believe every faction should have customised names for what are otherwise standard units.

Here are my ideas so far. You guys can adapt these names to the appropriate types in the mod.

I haven't yet played it but I will try to find what is the current version and appropriate stable patch version from the furious flurry of patches flying around!
:lol::)

FREMEN
======
Sietch Warriors - basic infantry (crysknife and maula pistols)
Desert Hunters - better movement?
Sietch Veterans - heavier (they have maula rifles or other heavier weapons)
Water Guardians - more elite warriors, have sacred duty to protect
Naib's Chosen - elites chosen by the Naib of the tribe

HOUSE ATREIDES
===========
House Militia - basic infantry
House Regulars
House Guard
Zensunni Blade Masters

SPACING GUILD
===========
Local Garrison
Guild Militia
Smugglers
Spacing Guard


Cheers,
Sword

keldath
Jul 21, 2009, 09:21 AM
deliverator,

i like you plan so far,

though im not sure if its necessary to separate to fighter hornet and bomber hornet classes, but, lets go with the majority. i rather have them as one class.

Ahriman
Jul 21, 2009, 09:36 AM
As something that comes up during design; the difference between unit classes in terms of in-game classes, where different classes will have bonuses against them (eg mounted vs melee vs archer) and different classes in terms of unit roles (eg longbowmen and crossbowmen in vanilla are the same unit class, but have different roles).
For this discussion, lets use Class for the first, and Role for the second.

There is no need for fighter and bomber hornets to be different Classes; they can both be hornet class. In fact, they could be the same class as thopters. So, an AA missile infantry could get a bonus vs Class_Thopter, which would benefit vs the fighter hornet units, the bomber hornet units, and the helicoptor thopter units.

Similarly, the City defender role, the Anti-Tank role, the Anti-Aircraft role can all be on Class_Infantry units. While all the shock troops (bursegs, bladesmen, saudarkar, etc.) can be Class_Melee role.

So, the total number of classes then would be (at minimum):
Infantry
Melee
Suspensor (transport hovers and escort hovers)
Thopter (including hornets, and carryalls?) OR Aircraft (if hornets aren't thopters)
Scorption (tank)
Roller (buggy, quad, etc.)
Siege

keldath
Jul 21, 2009, 10:01 AM
Ahriman,

nice ideas, i like them,

uniting the hornets with thopters can be a good idea -
gunship like
fighter like
bomber like.

not bad.

7 combat categories can be fine,
or maybe 8.

very good ideas.
lets get some votes so we can establish the unit basis ,so ill start setting this up in patch 1.3.9.

what should it be guys?

Deliverator
Jul 21, 2009, 10:22 AM
Changed my mind with Hornet too. I've decided I like it.

I've attached the csv for the unit renames and strategic resources I'm intending to do in patch 1.3.8. It's not aiming to be perfect, just be an improvement.

I am steering clear of moving these units around the tech tree and changing their strength, etc. I'll leave aspect of the reworking that to Keldath. I'm just interested in getting the strategic resources sorted and changing some odd names like Al-Lat (which means 'sun') and Jubba (which is a type of cloak).

keldath
Jul 21, 2009, 10:36 AM
thanks deliverator,

ill do the rework.

if you can assist me, and writing me what unit types will require which resources, so ill edit their preqeq.

ill make a re organization to the units, maybe adding tech or two to help this.

Deliverator
Jul 21, 2009, 10:53 AM
My basic rationale for strategic resources has been:

Iron Ore -> Swords, Blades, Early Armour
Crystal -> Suspensors, Flying
Diamonds -> Lasgun Weaponry
Nitrates -> High-explosive shells, bombs, missiles, etc
Stravidium -> Plasteel - late heavy armour
Uranium -> atomic propulsion, power and weaponry

I am experimenting in patch 1.3.8 with imported goods as strategic resources because I think it is an interesting idea. That is why you see new Resources such as Fremkits, Thinking Machines and Sapho Juice in the list.

keldath
Jul 25, 2009, 09:45 AM
hi people,

we need alot of feedback on the unit powers, positions and upgrades - who ever can help - it will be great.

Deliverator
Jul 25, 2009, 12:25 PM
I would say the biggest thing is to have a more gradual and steady increase in unit strength over time. The situation the Ahriman describes where you get a unit that is massively more powerful than another one, only one or two techs later needs to be avoided.

Also we need to come up with a game plan for what we are going to do about Hero units and Leader units. That regicide thread seem to get as far as the creation of a unit to represent the leader.

keldath
Jul 26, 2009, 11:09 AM
ok,
i need your thoughts:

do you guys want me to count three uus to each civ? or should i made the minimum of 2 - and some will have 3?

or -

the factions that can import good needed for certain units - how about this system:
for instance: house corrino - needs to build sardukar coop in order to build elite sardukar,
this unit replaces the regular sardukar - that also requires sardukar coop resources - but - the thing is - that if another faction - tades sardukar coop with corino - it gets access to the regular sardukar.

this will allow - factions will be able to access a bit weaker unit of a house's unique unit,
by trading the unique resource imported by a civ.
it will encourage tarding between civs of the imported goods, as well it will allow access to more unique units, without damaging ahouses strengh/balance by allowing another house to build the same unique unit you own.

the sardducar - a unit with 20 city attack 15 city defense - higher then regular units at the same tech era.

the elite sardukar - gets a bit higher bonus - 30 to both city attack and city defense

so the difference will be minor but still will give some advantage to the original house.

how about that? do i have a go for launch?
plz write me cause im halting progress till you guys authorize me to do this.
:)


**
p.s i love units.

davidlallen
Jul 26, 2009, 11:21 AM
I don't see a strong reason to stop progress. We are going to need to keep tuning the bonus distribution anyway, so we can certainly keep tuning the UU's. I think no civ should have more than 2 UU, unless there is a strong theme reason for 3. I am hoping that the civ unique ability (eg Harkonnen slavery) will create a big difference between the civs, and we will need to tune that also. Once we *have* unique abilities for all the civs, of course.

keldath
Jul 26, 2009, 11:28 AM
mmm ok,

i dont want unit spamming though, but, theres need to be order with them.

i think ill set a minimun of 2 units per civ - some will have three, those with the 2 civs - we need to give other powers to compensate -
i was thinking -
for example ferning - right now theres only one uu for them - how aout ill add one more,
and then - say they get an imported good named X for now - this resource - is needed to build special building that grant a power promotion to certain units, or something like that.

keldath
Jul 26, 2009, 12:14 PM
ok guys, this is what i ask and plan:

as i said, there was a lot of miss match between units, units were replacing units from other tech eras and classes.

i rather stick to the 3 uus per civ, i think it allows to create better diversion between units.

most of the civs, will have the imported good unique to them, and one of the uu of that civ - will need atleast one of the unique imported good to be built.

for each of these unique units based on unique bonus - there will be a sub unique unit -
this unit is similar to the unique unit of the faction, only a bit weaker then it.
only factions that will trade with this faction this unique bonus - will have access to this sub-unique unit.

some factions - will have units that doesn't require an imported good, they will still some sort of bonus produced or improrted, these faction will use the imported bonus for another thing - some sort of a buliding that will give some advantage - like a special promotion/exp or something else.
also - in the same manor - civs who will trade this good, will gain access to this buildng based on the imported good.


i think what i described will create some interesting diversity between factions and their units in battle, it will encourage to trade the imported goods to gain access to the unique stuff

later - we can use the event contract system to replace the unique building that imports the unique bonus - so that it will kinda be random for each time - that you can choose what ever contract you want, and gain access to its unique properties - a certain unit/building.


units is one of my strong parts which i love to work on,
i fixed and tweaked many tags on my 1.3.9 which due to this weekend.


write me your thought,

guys,
i really hope that you like what i suggested, i think its capturing what deliverator created on patch 1.3.8 along with my unit reflection,

plz, write me your thoughts.

Deliverator
Jul 26, 2009, 05:23 PM
I agree with your basic concept that the units allowed by the imported goods shouldn't be as powerful as the true unique units.

Rather than having sub-standard versions of units, I think it would be better to have to just have some true UUs that are better than the shared units. So for example, the Sardaukar Cooperation bonus allows production of the Sardaukar by any civ that can obtain it. But Corrino have the best Sardaukar retained for there own use, represented by the more powerful true unique units, say Bashar of the Corps and Burseg. That way the other factions get real Sardaukar rather than half-baked ones. I'm happy to have three true UUs per factions and then one or two that are shared by the civ's bonus resources.

This is pretty much exactly what you suggested here:
the sardducar - a unit with 20 city attack 15 city defense - higher then regular units at the same tech era.
the elite sardukar - gets a bit higher bonus - 30 to both city attack and city defense
so the difference will be minor but still will give some advantage to the original house.

I also think the unique units should have some more interesting powers/abilities/spells than just the vanilla ones.

In terms of david's contract code, I think the Landing Stage should stay to give the initial civ unique bonus resource. Then when you build the Space Port you get an opportunity to choose a couple of other imported resources to add to your civ one.

I like the idea of using Imported Goods for buildings and things other than unit prereqs. The Banqueting Hall is meant to be a very simple example of this. The more diverse ideas we can come up with the better.

keldath
Jul 26, 2009, 10:49 PM
ahh great im so happy you agree with me buddy :)

perfect - i agree on the use of both contract and the ubs.

then i will create the whole thing for all of the civs.

awesome.

Ahriman
Jul 27, 2009, 08:58 AM
So for example, the Sardaukar Cooperation bonus allows production of the Sardaukar by any civ that can obtain it.

This could get a bit weird, particularly if you are able to receive these resources by building a spaceport rather than just trading with them; you coudl get the situation where you get the Sardaukar resource, build Sardaukar units and then use them against the Emperor in battle. I guess it depends; do we think these guys are a Varangian Guard (loyal to the Emperor always) or a Praetorian Guard (easily bribeable)? My feeling was the former - particularly in a world where there are high levels of conditioning.

keldath
Jul 27, 2009, 09:27 AM
well the names of the units can be changed - sardukar can be only for the empror, and say, imperials troops can be build with the unique bonus.

Deliverator
Jul 27, 2009, 09:29 AM
Could we make it impossible for Sardaukar to attack Corrino units perhaps?

Or if you go to war with Corrino all Sardaukar disappear as they are recalled?

keldath
Jul 27, 2009, 09:56 AM
mm....that probably will need some Sirius python...

maybe giving it some large minus againt attacking other sardukar...?

hees a thought for an sdk tag - <bcannotattackciv>civilization_......

on the unit infos...

any volunteers? ..

Deliverator
Jul 27, 2009, 10:29 AM
The ideal might be that any Sardaukar you have built switch to fighting for Corrino if you go to war with them. You might need to have an additional warning that this is going to happen if you are about to attack them or declare war.

davidlallen
Jul 27, 2009, 10:41 AM
So for example, the Sardaukar Cooperation bonus allows production of the Sardaukar by any civ that can obtain it.

This could get a bit weird, particularly if you are able to receive these resources by building a spaceport rather than just trading with them; you coudl get the situation where you get the Sardaukar resource, build Sardaukar units and then use them against the Emperor in battle.

Maybe I did not explain my concept very clearly. In my concept, if the Corrino civ is in the game, the *only* way to get the SC bonus is to trade with Corrino. The picklist that you get upon completion of a contract contains only, your unique bonus, and the bonuses of other civs which are not in the game.

We can certainly discuss further, but I think the idea of a weaker unit buildable by this resource gets confusing. For example, why should Ecaz Mentats be stronger than other civs' Mentats? For Sardaukar, there is only one way where my proposal can lead to Sardaukar fighting against the Corrino. That is if you are friends with them and they trade you the resource, then you build the unit, then you attack them later. In this case you will no longer be able to build more Sardaukar, but you can still use the ones you have.

Does this make sense?

keldath
Jul 27, 2009, 10:42 AM
maybe some event mechanism?

thats triggered by attacking a certain civ?

Ahriman
Jul 27, 2009, 10:49 AM
The picklist that you get upon completion of a contract contains only, your unique bonus, and the bonuses of other civs which are not in the game.


This sounds good to me.

Deliverator
Jul 27, 2009, 10:54 AM
Maybe I did not explain my concept very clearly. In my concept, if the Corrino civ is in the game, the *only* way to get the SC bonus is to trade with Corrino.


I agree. My only distinction would be that I always want each civ to have their own unique bonus resource before they get to pick other ones. This is currently the role of the Landing Stage building. I am not viewing the Space Port picker as a replacement for the Landing Stage level buildings, but as an expansion of importing to include other items.

We can certainly discuss further, but I think the idea of a weaker unit buildable by this resource gets confusing. For example, why should Ecaz Mentats be stronger than other civs' Mentats?

I agree, as stated a few posts back.

For Sardaukar, there is only one way where my proposal can lead to Sardaukar fighting against the Corrino. That is if you are friends with them and they trade you the resource, then you build the unit, then you attack them later. In this case you will no longer be able to build more Sardaukar, but you can still use the ones you have.

Ahriman raised the point that this circumstance is bad from a theme point of view. I agree. The Sardaukar's loyalty is famously unbreakable. Count Fenring tells the Baron that they are even prepared to lie if instructed and say that the acted without orders in helping the Harkonnen's, in order to protect the Emperor's reputation.

So it would be nice to make it impossible to use the Sardaukar against Corrino however we achieve it. I'd like friendship with Corrino to be a strategy that you can use to get to build Sardaukar and use them against other civs. But you shouldn't be able to use the Emporer's own Sardaukar against him.

davidlallen
Jul 27, 2009, 11:01 AM
My only distinction would be that I always want each civ to have their own unique bonus resource before they get to pick other ones.

We can implement that with a single building by forcing the first contract to be the civ's unique one. But, it seems to me that I might *want* to choose some other available unique bonus first. Is there a reason to prevent that option?

So it would be nice to make it impossible to use the Sardaukar against Corrino however we achieve it.

I agree this would be a nice addition; I have no idea how to implement it. Do you think it is completely fatal to allow Sardaukar purchased while you were friends with the emperor, to attack the emperor? I could rationalize it by saying that you purchased them fairly and they are now unshakably loyal to *you*.

Ahriman
Jul 27, 2009, 11:04 AM
But you shouldn't be able to use the Emporer's own Sardaukar against him.

If you can only get them through trade, then this would be very rare; you have to have had good relations and *then* have a war. And in this case it seems plausible; if the emperor lends some soldiers to the Harkonnen and they then work with and live with the Harks for several years, its not implausible that years later they might support their new master in a conflict. They have "gone native" so to speak. Think Dances with wolves or Lawrence of arabia or whatever.

Is there a reason to prevent that option?
Flavor. It should always be easier to access your own homeworld resource. And if that resource is less valuable initially - so be it. Thats part of the balancing at the faction level, not the individual mechanic level.

davidlallen
Jul 27, 2009, 11:23 AM
OK, I accept that the earlier tech should just give you your unique bonus, and the later one should let you pick any available.

keldath
Jul 27, 2009, 12:08 PM
ok finished adding the ecaz units along with setting 3 uus to each civ,
now gonna implement the unique bonus system.

Ahriman
Jul 27, 2009, 12:13 PM
There is no particular reason why the number of UUs must be equal for all factions. Balance at the faction level, not the mechanic level.

Combat oriented factions like Harkonnen and Corrino can have more military UUs than trader civs or diplomatic civs or influence-meddling civs.

Deliverator
Jul 27, 2009, 12:15 PM
I can live with the turning of the Sardaukar against Corrino. After all, the Baron breaks Yueh's supposedly unbreakable conditioning.

Sounds good, keldath.

I do agree with Ahriman's points. If we do have three UUs per faction we should eventually make some that have a less military purpose to capture the spirit of each civ. For example, we have a unit called Acolyte which is an Elite unit right now. Acolyte should be a sort of junior UU for the Bene Gesserit with some non-military function. We can change things over time to give the less militarily oriented civs better flavour and more interesting UUs.

keldath
Jul 27, 2009, 12:47 PM
yes - not all uus should be millitary units,

but then again....mmm what else can they do?....maybe ifwe somehow can get some spells into the mod.

time will tell.

Ahriman
Jul 27, 2009, 12:58 PM
Lets distinguish between UUs and Heroes.
UUs are a unique unit available only to a particular civ.
Heroes are a specialist UU with a national limit of 1.

keldath
Jul 27, 2009, 01:06 PM
agreed.

Greeneyedzombie
Jul 28, 2009, 07:40 AM
Why not call the "sardaukar" you can trade from the emperor Imperial levy? (or another fancy name) In the books the emperor levys the best of the best from each house yearly, wich are supposedly trained into sardaukar.
Getting real sardaukar to fight against the emperor seems totally wrong. They are supposedly indoctrinated from childhood to be loyal, where sukdoctors loyalty seems to be created by hypnoses and drugs.

keldath
Jul 28, 2009, 01:08 PM
hey people,

patch 1.3.9 is almost ready, ive made numeros changes to the units.

tomorrow, ill add around 5 more buildings, to give empty techs some meaning.

:)

Ahriman
Aug 01, 2009, 03:19 PM
Since this seems to be discussed again (and in David's simplifaction thread) I thought I'd consider laying out a simple unit design, just as an example.

Unit class and role:
Infantry. City defender, anti-air, anti-tank.
Melee. city attacker
Rover. recon, skirmish/harassment
Armor field superiority fighter
Aircraft recon, mobile, anti-melee.
Suspensor. all-terrain transport or escort
Siege. city bombardment and collateral damage.

Unit classes associated features (unless otherwise specified)
Infantry. 1 move, can enter desert waste, and deep desert within cultural borders (like triremes can enter coast, and ocean within cultural borders).
Melee. 1 move, ignores city walls, can enter desert waste, and deep desert within cultural borders.
Rover. 3 moves, can ender desert wastes, cannot enter deep desert.
Armor 2 moves, cannot enter desert, does not get defensive terrain bonus. Higher hammer cost than other units of the tier.
Aircraft Thopters: 3 moves, can enter any tile, can spot invisible, +1 visual range, does not get defensive terrain bonus. Also fighters and bombers (standard abilities).
Suspensor. 3 moves, can enter any tile.
Siege. 1 move. Cannot enter desert. Can bombard city defenses. Does collateral damage.

Tier0:
Soldier. Strength 2, 1 move, +25% city defence.
Scout thopter. Strength 2, 2 moves, better results from villages, can transport 2 units (infantry,

Tier1:
Infantry 1. Strength 3, +45% city defense, +25% hills defense.
Melee 1. Strength 4, +25% city attack.
Rover 1. +20% withdraw chance. Strength 3. +50% vs siege units.
Armor 1. Strength 5. -20% city strength.
Thopter 1. Strength 3. +50% vs melee units.
AT trooper 1 (infantry). Strength 4, +50% vs armor units, +25% vs suspensor units.
Suspensor transport 1. Strength 2, can carry 3 units, cannot attack.
Suspensor escort 1. Strength 4.
Siege 1. Strength 4. +40% withdraw chance.

Tier2:
Infantry 2. Strength 6, +35% city defense, +25% hills defense.
Melee 2. Strength 7, +25% city attack.
Rover 2. +20% withdraw chance. Strength 6. +50% vs siege units.
Armor 2. Strength 9. -20% city strength.
Thopter 2. Strength 6. +50% vs melee units.
AT trooper 2 (infantry). Strength 6, +50% vs armor units, +25% vs suspensor units.
AA trooper 1 (infantry). Strength 6, +50% vs aircraft, can intercept aircraft 50% chance.
Suspensor transport 2. Strength 4, can carry 4 units.
Suspensor escort 2. Strength 7.
Fighter 1. Strength 5, +50% vs aircraft. Range 5.
Bomber 1. Strength 5, Range 6.
Siege2. Strength 4. +100% city attack. Can bombard adjacent tile.

Tier3:
Infantry 3. Strength 10, +25% city defense, +15% hills defense, can intercept aircraft (25% chance).
Melee 3. Strength 10, +25% city attack.
Rover 3. +30% withdraw chance. Strength 9. +50% vs siege units, cause collateral damage to siege units.
Armor 3. Strength 14. -20% city strength.
Thopter 3. Strength 9. +50% vs melee units.
AT trooper 3 (infantry). Strength 10, +50% vs armor units, +25% vs suspensor units.
AA trooper 2 (infantry). Strength 10, +50% vs aircraft, can intercept aircraft 50% chance.
Suspensor transport 3. Strength 7, can carry 5 units. 4 moves
Suspensor escort 3. Strength 10. 4 moves
Fighter 2. Strength 8, +50% vs aircraft. Range 6.
Bomber 2. Strength 8, Range 7.
Siege 3. Strength 10. +30% withdraw chance. Can bombard adjacent tile.

Tier4
Infantry 4. Strength 16, +25% city defense, +15% hills defense, can intercept aircraft (25% chance).
Melee 4. Strength 18, +25% city attack.
Rover 4. +30% withdraw chance. Strength 15. +50% vs siege units, cause collateral damage to siege units.
Armor 4. Strength 22. -20% city strength.
Thopter 4. Strength 15. +50% vs melee units.
AT trooper 4 (infantry). Strength 16, +50% vs armor units, +25% vs suspensor units.
AA trooper 3 (infantry). Strength 16, +50% vs aircraft, can intercept aircraft 50% chance.
Suspensor transport 4. Strength 10, can carry 5 units. 5 moves
Suspensor escort 4. Strength 15. 5 moves
Fighter 3. Strength 12, +50% vs aircraft. Range 6.
Bomber 3. Strength 12, Range 7.
Siege 4. Strength 15. 2 moves. +25% withdraw chance. Can bombard in 2-tile range.

Now, you might need to slightly tweak units so that units that come earlier in a tier are weaker and units that come later in a tier are stronger; so maybe in tier1 armor units and AT units come later and so are stronger, and maybe in tier2 the AA unit comes early and you have 2 stages of city defender infantry and melee infantry, etc.

So you could add an extra basic infantry and melee unit to some tiers, and maybe a few elite/specialist units, like grenadiers in vanilla civ, or burseg/sardaukar type units.

And so some example UUs might be:

Fedaykin 1 (Fremen UU). Replaces melee 2. Strength 8, +25% city attack, 2 moves, can enter desert tiles.
Fedaykin 2 (Fremen UU) Replaces melee 3. Strength 12, +25% city attack, 2 moves, can enter desert tiles.
Worm riders 1. Replaces suspensor transport 1, strength 4, 4 moves, can carry 3 units (infantry only).
Worm riders 2. Replaces suspensor transport 2, strength 7, 5 moves, can carry 4 units (infantry only)
And Fremen lack access to siege units beyond level 1, and maybe armor and/or rover units too, and maybe get combat bonuses in deep desert tiles.

Devastator (Harkonnen UU). Replaces armor 4. Strength 30, 1 move, -20% city strength.

Trike (Ordos UU), replaces rover 1, strength 4, 10% withdraw chance.

Sonic tank (Atreides UU), replaces armor 4, strength 20, 2 moves, -20% city strength, does collateral damage.

keldath
Aug 01, 2009, 04:50 PM
great work buddy,

i was trying to have something like this.

maybe you can help more - can you write the tech position for each unit? if youll do so, ill usee this and build the units as you suggest.

thanks for this inspiring post.

Ahriman
Aug 01, 2009, 06:38 PM
Well, you'll probably have to adjust the tech tree a little, but here's a rough guide using the current tech tree

Note that it would be good to get feedback from others on whether some of these are too strong or too weak, and the strengths also need to get tweaked depending on whether the unit arrives early or late in the tier; later units need to be relatively more powerful.

Tier0:
Soldier. Tech: none.
Scout thopter. Tech: exploration

Tier1:
Infantry 1. Tech: Defense tactics.
Melee 1. Tech: Stillsuits
Rover 1. Tech: Desert warfare
Armor 1. Tech: crystal materials
Thopter 1. Tech: Desert engineering
AT trooper 1 (infantry). Tech:Holy Jihad
Suspensor transport 1. Tech:Suspensor devices
Suspensor escort 1. Tech: Suspensor devices
Siege 1. Strength 4.Tech: Imperialism

Tier2:
Infantry 2. Tech: Desert culture
Melee 2. Water of life
Rover 2. Tech: desert pathfinding
Armor 2. Tech: knowledge engine
Thopter 2. Tech: Winds of Arrakis
AT trooper 2 (infantry). Tech: spacing guild
AA trooper 1 (infantry). Tech: spacing guild
Suspensor transport 2. Riding the worm
Suspensor escort 2. riding the worm
Fighter 1.Tech: Desert power
Bomber 1. Desert power
Siege2. Strength 4. Tech: way of the wicked

Tier3:
Infantry 3. Tech: lasgun weapons
Melee 3. kindjal
Rover 3. Tech:Way of the desert
Armor 3. Tech: desert industry
Thopter 3. Tech: aerial tactics
AT trooper 3 (infantry). Tech: heat shields ??
AA trooper 2 (infantry). Tech: heat shields ??
Suspensor transport 3. nullentropy
Suspensor escort 3. nullentropy
Fighter 2. Tech: aerial tactics
Bomber 2. Tech: aerial tactics
Siege 3. Tech: economy of war

Tier4
Infantry 4. Tech:way of the weirding
Melee 4. Tech:holtzmann effect
Rover 4. Tech: low energy vehicle
Armor 4. Tech: mass industry
Thopter 4. Tech: aerial combat
AT trooper 4 (infantry). plasteel
AA trooper 3 (infantry). weirding module
Suspensor transport 4. Tech: cooling systems
Suspensor escort 4. Tech: cooling systems
Fighter 3. Tech: aerial combat
Bomber 3. aerial combat
Siege 4. Tech: sonic warfare

But as I said, the tech tree doesn't make a ton of sense as it is; its not clear what a lot of the techs are supposed to represent, or why they're in the order that they are.

And there are lot of fairly empty techs at the top of the tree.

I'd consider reworking the techs significantly into more distinct tech lines.

Government techs
Culture techs
Infantry techs
Mechanized techs
Engineering techs
Commerce techs
Religious techs
Education/philosophy techs.

Ahriman
Aug 02, 2009, 12:26 PM
Any feedback on this stuff?

davidlallen
Aug 02, 2009, 12:33 PM
It is hard to give any feedback except for "looks reasonable" without coding it and playing it. In the "reduced" mod mod thread I am doing something similar, but all the details are different. I hope to put up a first version today.

Ahriman
Aug 19, 2009, 01:32 PM
Ok, some thoughts on how to tweak the current unit list to fit better with the new tech tree.

There are several problems atm.
Strength jumps across tiers can be too large.
Some strength bonuses currently make no sense. Why should thopters get a bonus against guardsmen (which includes anti-thopter missile troops).
No reason for shock troops to be a separate unit category.
High end of tech tree gets weird - lots of special units, few core units.
Scorpions are insufficient threats. They should be very powerful on open ground.
Not enough specialist AA/AT infantry.
Hornet design confused.
Not enough siege units.

* signifies an added unit.

Core units.
Guardsmen (=ranged infantry): All 1 move.
Soldier. Strength 2, +25% city defense.
Infantry. Strength 3, 1 first strike +45% city defense, +25% hills defense.
Master guardsman. Strength 5, 1 first strike +45% city defense, +25% hills defense.
Heavy trooper. Strength 9, 1 first strike, +30% city defense.
Lasgun soldier. Strength 13, 1 first strike, +25% vs melee units. (melee units can't use their shields). Requires diamonds.
Lasgun trooper. Strength 18, 1 first strike, +25% vs melee units (melee units can't use their shields)
Requires diamonds.
Grenadier. Strength 6, does collateral damage, +50% attack vs melee.
Requires nitrates.

Rocket trooper. Strength 4, +50% vs vehicle, +50% vs thopter, +50% vs hornet, can intercept aircraft 50%.
Missile trooper. Strength 8, +50% vs vehicle, +50% vs thopter, +50% vs hornet, can intercept aircraft 50%.
Mongoose trooper. Strength 12, +50% vs vehicle, +50% vs thopter, +50% vs hornet, can intercept aircraft 50%. Requires nitrates.
Bee-sting trooper. Strength 16, +50% vs vehicle, +50% vs thopter, +50% vs hornet, can intercept aircraft 50%. Requires nitrates.

Reverend mother (Bene Gesserit UU, as current)
Atreides heir (Atreides UU, as current)

Melee: All 1 move.
Bladesman. Strength 6. Ignores city walls. +10% city attack.
Elite bladesman. Strength 8. Ignores city walls. +25% city attack.
Shock trooper. Strength 12 Ignores city walls. +25% city attack.
*Elite shock trooper. Strength 18. Ignores city walls. +35% city attack. Requires Kindjal blades tech.

Vehicle: All 2 moves, does not get defensive bonuses from terrain or fortification, cannot enter peaks, -20% hill strength, -20% city strength.
*Quad. Strength 5. 30% withdraw chance. (requires sand rovers tech)
Light scorpion. Strength 11. 20% withdraw chance
Medium scorpion. Strength 18 10% withdraw chance.
Heavy scorpion. Strength 28. Requires stradvium.

Thopter: all ignore terrain costs, do not get defensive benefits, cannot pillage.
Scout thopter. Strength 1, capacity 2 (guardsmen and melee only), 2 moves, cannot attack.
Light carryall. Strength 5, capacity 5, 4 moves, cannot attack.
Medium carryall. Strength 7, capacity 6, 5 moves, cannot attack.
Heavy carryall. Strength 10, capacity 6, 6 moves, cannot attack. Requires stradvium.
Hawk thopter. Strength 5, 2 moves, +40% vs melee.
Falcon Thopter. Strength 8, 3 moves, +40% vs melee. Requires crystals.
Buzzard thopter. Strength 12, 4 moves, +40% vs melee. Requires crystals.
Eagle thopter. Strength 18, 4 moves, +40% vs melee. Requires crystals.
*No-ship. Strength 18, invisible, targets weakest unit. National limit 2. Requires crystals. Requires stradvium.

Hornet:
Wasp (was light hornet). Strength 8. +50% vs hornet. Fighter abilities. Range 5.
Firefly (was assault hornet). Strength 10. Range 6. Bomber abilities. Does collateral damage. Requires crystals.
Locust (was medium hornet). Strength 12, +50% vs hornet, fighter, can intercept, range 7. Requires crystals.
Dragonfly (was heavy hornet). Strength 18. Bomber, does collateral damage. Range 8, Requires stradvium.
Stealth hornet. Strength 22. Bomber abilities, does colleteral damage. Range 9. 80% evades interception. Requires stradvium, requires crystals.


Suspensor. All get double movement on desert waste and deep desert, cannot pillage.
Suspensor transport. Strength 2, Capacity 3. 2 moves.
Suspensor carrier. Strength 8, Capacity 3 (hornet only). 3 moves.
Suspensor gunship. Strength 5. +25% vs thopter, 2 moves.
Suspensor destroyer. Strength 8. +25% vs thopter, 2 moves.
Suspensor frigate. Strength 12. +25% vs thopter, 3 moves.
Suspensor cruiser. Strength 16. +25% vs thopter, 3 moves.
[thopter bonus is designed to make them win vs thopters, otherwise the suspensors have no real role to play]

Siege
Maula mortar. Strength 4. 1 movement, can bombard city walls, does collateral damage, +50% city attack.
*Maula cannon. Strength 8. 1 movement, can bombard city walls, does collateral damage. Requires liquid fuel tech
Maula turret. Strength 10. 1 movement, can bombard city walls, can bombard units, does collateral damage.
Rocket artillery Strength 16. 2 movement, can bombard city walls, can bombard units, does collateral damage. Requires nitrates. Requires stradvium.

Espionage

Special units:
Ixian walker. Vehicle class. Strength 8. 1 move. 1 first strike. +50% vs melee. Requires Thinking Machines. National limit 8.
Ixian Avatar. Vehicle class. Strength 11. 1 move. +25% vs thopter, +25% vs hornet, +25% vs vehicles, 25% intercept chance. Requires Thinking Machines. National limit 8
Ixian cymek. Vehicle class. Strength 14. 1 move. +25% vs thopter, +25% vs hornet, +25% vs vehicles, 25% intercept chance. Requires Thinking Machines. National limit 8
Ixian spider. Vehicle class. Strength 20. 1 move. +25% vs melee. Requires Thinking Machines. National limit 6

Imperial militia (Corrino UU, replace Master guardsman). Guardsman class. Strength 6, 1 first strike +25% city defense, +25% hills defense.

*Sardaukar Legionary. Strength 14. Melee class. 1 move. Ignore city walls. +15% city attack. Requires Sardaukar cooperation. National limit 10 Requires personal shields tech.

Sardaukar Noukker (was: Sardaukar). Strength 20. Melee class. 1 move. Ignore city walls. +35% city attack. Requires Sardaukar cooperation. National limit 10

Worm rider. Strength 13. Melee class. 2 moves. Sandrider. Ignore city walls. Requires Water Debt.
Fedaykin. Strength 18. Ignores city walls. Sand rider. +25% vs melee. Requires Water Debt.
Ginaz swordmaster (was ginaz swordsmen). Strength 12. 1 move. +50% vs melee units. Ignore city walls. national limit 10. Requires Kindjal resource (rename Swordmaster training).

Mentat assassin. Strength 12. 2 moves. Targets weakest unit in stack. National limit 10. Requires Sapho.
Desert raider. Melee class. Strength 4, 2 moves, sandrider. Ignores city walls. Requires Water debt.
* Trike. (Ordos UU, replaces Quad). As quad, but +1 move.
* Devastator. Harkonnen UU. Replaces Heavy scorpion. Strength 35. 1 move. -30% city strength. Cannot enter peaks or hills.
* Sonic tank. Atreides UU. Replaces medium scorpion. Same as medium scorpion, but does colleteral damage.

Deliverator
Aug 19, 2009, 04:03 PM
These seem like good refinements overall.

Could we give the later Suspensors the ability to Bombard cities? AA seems like quite a limited role for them.

It would be nice to have some slightly more interesting names and not resort to Light/Medium/Heavy so often. For the Hornets we could have insects - Wasp, Locust, Firefly. If needs be put 'Fighter' or 'Fighter Bomber' so that the purpose is more clear - Wasp Fighter, Locust Fighter Bomber, etc. For the scorpion perhaps have Sandspider, Scorpion, Tarantula and rename the Ixian Spider to something else. Perhaps also we could change Shock Trooper to Swordmaster as I don't really associate the term with Melee infantry. If you had Swordmaster and Elite Swordmaster then you can still have Ginaz Swordmaster being the best ones.

Ahriman
Aug 19, 2009, 04:40 PM
The main suspensor role isn't as AA, its as highly mobile transport escorts across the desert. The reason why they are AA is so that they aren't easy prey for thopters, and so they do a better job as escorts than thopters would.

I agree that the names could use some work. I'd like to get rid of "Elite x" and "Light y" type names.

Shock troops are assault troops, which historically (and in the Dune universe) *were* close-quarters combat fighters; either with melee weapons, bayonets, or submachine guns (as opposed to longer range rifles). I'm comfortable with shock troops as melee (though they need new art), I'd rather leave Swordmasters as just coming from the trade good research. Swordmaster is a formal title that comes only from attending the Ginaz school.

I like Wasp, Locust and Firefly for aircraft.
Sandspider sounds a bit weak, but scorpion and tarantula are good. Are there any Dune-canon desert arachnids or insects?

Other general names:
Enforcer, Guardian, Defender, Gunner, Escort, Vanguard

davidlallen
Aug 19, 2009, 05:18 PM
This will be the fifth major design of the units.
1. Keldath's original
2. Koma's, which introduced the scout thopter transport
3. Mine, which introduced the mongoose unit for example
4. Keldath changed all the unit strengths and tiers in the old tech tree
5. This one.

Does this show *any* signs of ever converging?

When we do this mass renaming, I wind up cleaning a lot of things:
* All the XML tags, for example, UNIT_SWORDSMAN for a thopter unit
* All the related text such as pedia and strategy
* The unit art, so sword units have sword animation, even if it's a vanilla unit
* The button selection, so all the walkers have a walker icon and nobody else does

I know keldath has complained that when I do this, he winds up cleaning a lot of things, such as the upgrade tree.

Doing it once or twice is worth the pain, but not so much after 4-5 times.

Ahriman
Aug 19, 2009, 06:11 PM
I feel that this design could be fairly final, at least as final as the tech tree.
This is also heavily based on the current design, there are only a few differences, not many new units mostly just name changes and strength tweaks, and cleaning the classes.

Certainly I think this is much better than the current, because of the problems I identified in the post. Combat is such a big part of civ that I think its really important to get it right. It isn't really right at the moment. For example, going from a strength 5 city defender to a strength 12.
Or how falcon thopters (strength 10 thopter) beat missile troopers (strength 10 anti-air) because the falcon thopter has a 60% bonus vs guardsmen.
Or the fact that the scorpion class has only 3 units, or how the shock trooper class includes both melee and ranged units.

Also, it was inevitable that there would have to be unit tweaking as part of adopting a new tech tree.

Up to you guys obviously.

I would suggest that people try to do criticisms and comments in this thread to clean this design, before anyone spends the time to actually implement it.

Deliverator
Aug 20, 2009, 03:26 AM
Does this show *any* signs of ever converging?

I agree with Ahriman - this isn't a major redesign really, it is just making the units we have work better with the new tech tree and adding/renaming some units for more flavour. The five steps you list are really steps in the evolution of what we have now - not all of them were comprehensive designs.

Modding is an iterative process. Each iteration needs to be a significant improvement over the last for it to be worth it. I think we are getting to close to a decent unit progression now. I understand the reluctance to keep refining this area, but it would be a shame to stop improving things just because it is painful. I am happy to do some XML if people are getting jaded.

We should probably get the unit upgrade paths clearly specified as well, since that is an important part of unit design.

Ahriman
Aug 20, 2009, 05:58 AM
The intended unit upgrades are implied by the design; units were placed in blocks of upgrade paths.
So:Soldier->Infantry->Heavy trooper->Lasgun soldier->lasgun trooper
Grenadier -> heavy trooper
Bladesman -> Elite bladesman -> Shock trooper -> elite shock trooper
Scout thopter -> light carryall -> medium carryall -> heavy carryall

Ixian meks all in a single upgrade path.

Worm rider -> Fedaykin.
Ginaz swordsmen -> elite shock trooper

Nothing upgrades to worm rider or sardaukar.

etc.

One other issue I thought of;
There could be an AI problem with fighter/bombers IF they have to be assigned either/or roles for the AI. The AI uses fighters on intercept missions, and doesn't bombard with them, and the AI bombards with bombers but doesn't intercept with them AFAIK.
Certainly I've found the AI building lots of light hornets and putting them on interception, but never bombarding with them and never really building assault hornets.
So maybe we need to create fighters AND bombers at each tier, or just make each one a fighter OR bomber. So we have light hornet/assault hornet, and then medium hornet = bomber, heavy hornet = fighter, stealth hornet = bomber.

*edit*
I should also note, I am indifferent from a design perspective about between merging all the aircraft in and leaving thopters/hornets/carryalls in separate categories.
Just whatever makes book-keeping simpler. If there are various code hooks that just refer to thopters, then thats fine, leave them separate, just make all the missile troops get the bonus vs thopters and hornets.

davidlallen
Aug 20, 2009, 08:56 AM
I should also note, I am indifferent from a design perspective about between merging all the aircraft in and leaving thopters/hornets/carryalls in separate categories.

The main reason for multiple unitcombats is for promotions. The promotions are made available by unitcombat and they generally give advantages against unitcombats. If we merge all three categories into one, then we can't give just thopters, for example, a bonus against guardsmen. So I recommend keeping three unitcombats, unless you agree that all three will have identical strengths/weaknesses against other unitcombats.

Ahriman
Aug 20, 2009, 09:25 AM
The main reason for multiple unitcombats is for promotions. The promotions are made available by unitcombat and they generally give advantages against unitcombats. If we merge all three categories into one, then we can't give just thopters, for example, a bonus against guardsmen. So I recommend keeping three unitcombats, unless you agree that all three will have identical strengths/weaknesses against other unitcombats.

I agree that hornets and thopters should have different access to promotions. Not because of strengths/weakenesses, but because aircraft should be getting things like improved interception and evasion and collateral damage, while thopters should not.

I'd consider merging thopters and carryalls though, but the only real reason for this is to make things slightly cleaner.

The downside of separate categories is that the rocket trooper type units then need a larger entry; they need to get a bonus against 3 types of units (vehicles, hornets, thopters) rather than two (vehicles, aircraft). But this is minor.

keldath
Aug 20, 2009, 10:30 AM
hey guys,
so ,
do i go with the tier specified above by ahriram?

Ahriman
Aug 20, 2009, 12:32 PM
Issues we should get feedback on before going ahead:
a) Separate fighters and bombers or fighter/bombers? I changed the design to separate them. We could add more hornets if needed, but 5 total is probably enough.
b) National limits on URUs. Needed, or not?
Are we ok with Sardaukar resource only providing 1 unit, the Sardaukar themselves?
As opposed to Thinking machines which gives 4 units?
c) Happy with unit rolls? Melee are city attack. Thopter are mobile and anti-melee, and carryalls. Suspensors are carryall escorts. Guardsmen are city defense, anti-melee or anti-tank/anti-air. Scorpions are field superiority fighters but weaker in hills and cities.
How do we feel about about lasgun design; bonus vs melee (since they can't use personal shields). Should they also ignore city wall shields?
d) Name changes. Are these worth the flavor?

Deliverator
Aug 20, 2009, 02:11 PM
It would be nice to have two grades of Sardaukar eventually I think.

With renaming we can change the cosmetic names and then wait for things to settle a bit before doing the XML tags.

I don't have strong feelings on the other points right now.

Ahriman
Aug 20, 2009, 02:22 PM
So, how about a weaker version of Sardaukar at Personal shields tech (Strength 14 Ignores city walls. +25% city attack.), and then this current version at Kindjal blades?

Sardaukar and Imperial Sardaukar? Though imperial is tautological. Salusan Sardaukar? Also somewhat tautological.
Imperial levy at personal shields, and then Sardaukar at Kindjal blades?

Deliverator
Aug 20, 2009, 02:48 PM
You could have Sardaukar Legionary and Sardaukar Elite or use Noukkers for the stronger one.

NOUKKERS: officers of the Imperial bodyguard who are related to the Emperor by blood. Traditional rank for sons of royal concubines.

keldath
Aug 21, 2009, 06:33 AM
hey guys,
as i said, i wanna get started with working on the unit tree,
so im a little confused with all the above posts, anyone can point me a bit?

Ahriman
Aug 21, 2009, 07:27 AM
Keldath, do you have any points on the issues raised in post 103?

I am editing the other things into the post 93.

davidlallen
Aug 21, 2009, 09:35 AM
so im a little confused with all the above posts, anyone can point me a bit?

This is exactly why I have tried to insist that all the feedbacks should have a unique ID and should be kept in a spreadsheet. Please download the spreadsheet from this post (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8376476&postcount=32) and you will see all the unit feedback helpfully grouped together.

As you are starting to see, whenever there is a lot of feedback, this is a helpful way to organize it.

Deliverator
Aug 21, 2009, 11:55 AM
I think, to be fair, it is useful to present an overview of all units in the way Ahriman has. It is hard to bundle this all up a single issue.

Keldath, I would just take post 93 (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8378298&postcount=93) as a specification for how the units should be.

Upgrade paths are described here (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8380285&postcount=99).

Changes coming out of this issues discussed after post 93 can be made later.

I have a good understanding of the refinements Ahriman has presented I think, so I can do the XML if you'd like.

davidlallen
Aug 21, 2009, 12:17 PM
Keldath has complained about both rewrites I have done, that the units are not well distributed in the tech tree. So the tech for each unit should be added to the design. Also, I highly recommend to avoid adding UU right now so that we can focus on the core units, without worrying about rebalancing the UU along with the main units. Deleting the two Imperial UU for now would be fine. The Reverend Mother and Atreides Heir are not really part of the main unit progression; you can delete them for now, but may as well leave them in.

My project for this weekend is to look into some of the SDK all terrain unit problems such as multiple unloads and using worker actions while inside a transport. (Yes, these are SDK changes. Yes, the first step is to learn how to build the SDK. Yes, that is what I am planning.)

keldath
Aug 21, 2009, 12:33 PM
hey guys, thanks for the info,

david,
i didnt complained... i just thought there should be some space between them.

also - uus, dont worry, as we agreed, first we need to finalize all core components for the mod, we still have much work - promotions, finished the tech tree (costs n flavors) and more.

im glad your going into the sdk, i bet that once you start youll be able to make great stuff there with you skills.

note that ive uploaded a new sdk on the incremental thread - ive added the car accelerator mod - it speeds up bts in 15%.

koma13
Aug 21, 2009, 12:38 PM
(Yes, these are SDK changes. Yes, the first step is to learn how to build the SDK. Yes, that is what I am planning.)

You changed your mind? :)

Ahriman
Aug 21, 2009, 12:53 PM
I agree that the military pacing feels "off" at the moment, but this is happening for two reasons.

a) The beaker costs in the current version are not the intended costs from the design document. They are often wildly different (eg vendettas tech, fanaticism tech). This messes EVERYTHING up.
b) The gap between tier 1/1.5 units (infantry, bladesman, rocket trooper/elite bladesman, master guardsmen, grenade trooper, mortar ) vs the tier2 units (heavy trooper, shock trooper, falcon thopter etc.) is potentially too large.
Part of the intention though was for the player to get only some of these techs (a religion and a form of government) and beeline one of the tier2 techs before getting the the rest, and for it not to be too easy for a tech-leader to easily bulldoze other factions in that period.
Maybe this didn't work, but it will be hard to tell until the tech costs are corrected and then adjusted.

I've added in techs for the new units; the other units weren't intended to change techs.

I have no problem with cutting UUs atm, and holding off, I agree its important to get the core right first.
For example, the fact that there was no high-level melee core unit ("elite shock trooper" in my design) was clouded by the existence of Sardaukar and Fedaykin and the like.

I think the main issues to get feedback on are in post 193, and point b) in this post.

davidlallen
Aug 21, 2009, 01:01 PM
You changed your mind? :)

I am probably the only 2000+ post person who posts in the sdk/python forums who has never done this. It is time.

keldath
Aug 21, 2009, 01:09 PM
hehe goodluck buddy.

ive started working on the units, according to post 93.

david have done all the work on the positioning, so im left with less work, thanks david.
ill just arrange the strengths, costs and add the rover units.

Deliverator
Aug 21, 2009, 01:15 PM
By rover units do you mean in addition to the list in post 93? If so, is there really room for another category of unit?

davidlallen
Aug 21, 2009, 01:24 PM
For the most part the units in post 93 already exist in the game. However, both the tech tree redesign and the unit redesign request a couple of "weaker scorpion" units, that is, scorpion-like units which come lower in the tech tree. I think of these as scorpions, keldath thinks of them as rollers. I am assuming these will be part of the scorpion unitcombat. There is a separate topic of whether the scorpion unitcombat should be renamed and whether the units should be more interestingly named than "light, medium and heavy". But these are the units to which keldath is referring.

keldath
Aug 21, 2009, 01:44 PM
hey,
im refering to the quads, as a light light scorpion unit.

ive renamed scorpion class to vehicle, as ahriman suggested, i think it better this way.

so far the speard ahriman gave done is pretty good to my taste, though,

in early mid unit tree there are low count of units, and in late there are a lot, but he compensated this by making the values of units to consider this.

im really happy with ahrimans work, is suits the tree well.

keldath
Aug 22, 2009, 06:07 AM
hey guys,
youve all gone quite over the weekend..

here's an update:

im near completion of the unit tree according to post 93 of ahriman,
i now need to add the new quad, trike,devastator, sonic tank.

ill finish this during the coming week along with the tech flavors.

davidlallen
Aug 22, 2009, 09:07 AM
The weekend is young. Last night I built my first sdk, and updated JRouteNative to BTS 3.19. Today I am going to do some work on Fury Road and then I will fix the bugs related to loading and unloading in all terrain transports.

You recently put up a new sdk which has the CAR mod integrated. Does this also have the AI for the homeworld screen by koma? I would like to make sure we do not lose any features as we go forward. I will make my bug fixes on top of your CAR mod source code.

keldath
Aug 22, 2009, 09:13 AM
hey david,
yes i saw your post on jroute, nice one.


and yeah - i included the latest code of hw by koma.

:)

davidlallen
Aug 22, 2009, 10:14 AM
@ keldath (or koma), I can't compile the current sdk. I get a small number of link errors:

Creating library Final_Release\CvGameCoreDLL.lib and object Final_Release\CvGameCoreDLL.exp
CvDLLPython.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "void __cdecl CyCityPythonInterface2(class boost::python::class_ &)" (?CyCityPythonInterface2@@YAXAAV?$class_@VCyCity@@ Unot_specified@detail@python@boost@@U2345@U2345@@p ython@boost@@@Z) referenced in function "void __cdecl DLLPublishToPython(void)" (?DLLPublishToPython@@YAXXZ)
CvInfos.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "public: void __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools::setLocationName(class CvString *,char const *)" (?setLocationName@CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools@@QAEXPA VCvString@@PBD@Z) referenced in function "public: virtual bool __thiscall CvInfoBase::read(class CvXMLLoadUtility *)" (?read@CvInfoBase@@UAE_NPAVCvXMLLoadUtility@@@Z)
CvInfos.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "public: void __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools::StringArrayExtend(class CvString * *,int *,class CvString * *,int,class CvString)const " (?StringArrayExtend@CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools@@QBEX PAPAVCvString@@PAH0HV2@@Z) referenced in function "public: void __thiscall CvCivilizationInfo::copyNonDefaults(class CvCivilizationInfo *)" (?copyNonDefaults@CvCivilizationInfo@@QAEXPAV1@@Z)
CvInfos.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "public: bool __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools::isDuplicate(int,int *,int)const " (?isDuplicate@CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools@@QBE_NHPAHH @Z) referenced in function "public: void __thiscall CvHandicapInfo::copyNonDefaults(class CvHandicapInfo *)" (?copyNonDefaults@CvHandicapInfo@@QAEXPAV1@@Z)
CvXMLLoadUtilitySet.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "public: void __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtilitySetMod::loadModControlArray(class std::vector > &,char const *,int)" (?loadModControlArray@CvXMLLoadUtilitySetMod@@QAEX AAV?$vector@VCvString@@V?$allocator@VCvString@@@st d@@@std@@PBDH@Z) referenced in function "private: void __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtility::LoadDiplomacyInfo(class std::vector > &,char const *,char const *,char const *,class CvCacheObject * (__thiscall CvDLLUtilityIFaceBase::*)(char const *))" (?LoadDiplomacyInfo@CvXMLLoadUtility@@AAEXAAV?$vec tor@PAVCvDiplomacyInfo@@V?$allocator@PAVCvDiplomac yInfo@@@std@@@std@@PBD11P8CvDLLUtilityIFaceBase@@A EPAVCvCacheObject@@1@Z@Z)
CvXMLLoadUtilitySet.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "public: class CvString __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools::deleteFileName(char const *,char)" (?deleteFileName@CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools@@QAE?AVC vString@@PBDD@Z) referenced in function "private: void __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtility::LoadDiplomacyInfo(class std::vector > &,char const *,char const *,char const *,class CvCacheObject * (__thiscall CvDLLUtilityIFaceBase::*)(char const *))" (?LoadDiplomacyInfo@CvXMLLoadUtility@@AAEXAAV?$vec tor@PAVCvDiplomacyInfo@@V?$allocator@PAVCvDiplomac yInfo@@@std@@@std@@PBD11P8CvDLLUtilityIFaceBase@@A EPAVCvCacheObject@@1@Z@Z)
CvXMLLoadUtilitySet.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "public: bool __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools::isModularArt(char const *)" (?isModularArt@CvXMLLoadUtilityModTools@@QAE_NPBD@ Z) referenced in function "private: bool __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtility::LoadModLoadControlInfo(class std::vector > &,char const *,char const *)" (??$LoadModLoadControlInfo@VCvModLoadControlInfo@@ @CvXMLLoadUtility@@AAE_NAAV?$vector@PAVCvModLoadCo ntrolInfo@@V?$allocator@PAVCvModLoadControlInfo@@@ std@@@std@@PBD1@Z)
CvXMLLoadUtilitySet.obj : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "public: void __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtilitySetMod::setModLoadControlDirArray( bool)" (?setModLoadControlDirArray@CvXMLLoadUtilitySetMod @@QAEX_N@Z) referenced in function "private: void __thiscall CvXMLLoadUtility::ModularLoadingControlXML(void)" (?ModularLoadingControlXML@CvXMLLoadUtility@@AAEXX Z)
Final_Release\CvGameCoreDLL.dll : fatal error LNK1120: 8 unresolved externals


Starting with an empty directory, I copy all the 3.19 CvGameCoreDLL files, and then unpack the dunesdk-1.3.9.exe on top of it. Then I setup the project using refar's makefile and make. It goes and compiles all the files fine; but there are some unresolved references.

Is it possible that there are 1-2 updated files missing from the dunesdk-1.3.9 archive?

keldath
Aug 22, 2009, 10:42 AM
hey david,

i dont know to read the errors,
all i can say the sdk ive uploaded is the exact files ive compiled.

what is the process that you did?

davidlallen
Aug 22, 2009, 11:27 AM
I figured it out. Your Makefile has paths to your compile tools, so I was using my Makefile with my own paths. But your Makefile also has bunch of other changes compared to the original one from refar. So I put my paths into your Makefile and it is working.

keldath
Aug 22, 2009, 12:32 PM
oh yeah right! i should have told you this!

glad you figured it out.

koma13
Sep 06, 2009, 09:22 AM
I can't compile the sdk, getting same error as David (link error). I am using codeblocks and vc++2003, changing the make file won't help me... any suggestions? :(

davidlallen
Sep 06, 2009, 03:46 PM
You have compile/linked it before, right? Can you go back to those same files and compile/link ok? The changes I made were pretty small ones, and I don't *think* keldath has made big changes. Perhaps his merge of the CAR mod threw you off. The difference between the refar makefile and the keldath makefile was adding a couple of source files such as CyCityPythonInterface2. Does that help any?

koma13
Sep 07, 2009, 04:54 AM
Thank you David! I added the missing source files manually to my project and it seems to produce now a valid CvGameCoreDLL. :goodjob:

Deliverator
Oct 23, 2009, 12:00 PM
Wasp (was light hornet). Strength 8. +50% vs hornet. Fighter abilities. Range 5.
Firefly (was assault hornet). Strength 10. Range 6. Bomber abilities. Does collateral damage. Requires crystals.
Locust (was medium hornet). Strength 12, +50% vs hornet, fighter, can intercept, range 7. Requires crystals.
Dragonfly (was heavy hornet). Strength 18. Bomber, does collateral damage. Range 8, Requires stradvium.
Stealth hornet. Strength 22. Bomber abilities, does colleteral damage. Range 9. 80% evades interception. Requires stradvium, requires crystals.

I want to get the upgrade paths for these sorted.

At the moment we have:

Wasp -> Locust -> Dragonfly -> Cielago (Stealth Hornet)
Firefly has no upgrade option.

Shouldn't there be a fighter path and bomber path? Like this:

Wasp -> Locust
Firefly-> Dragonfly -> Cielago

Also, I'd like to add a descriptive word to the names to indicate the purpose e.g. Wasp Interceptor, Firefly Bomber, Cielago Stealth Bomber

Ahriman
Oct 23, 2009, 12:14 PM
Agreed.

Deliverator
Oct 23, 2009, 12:38 PM
Something else that bugs me now that we have the worm rider graphic on scouts, etc.

Can we rename the Riding the Worm tech and the Worm Rider unit? Worm Rider is something that young Fremen kids can do so it is not really a good name for a Fremen warrior UU.

The current requirement for Riding the Worm is Mind Training and Sand Worms and it leads to Water of Life. How about calling the tech Fremen Ways and the unit Naib's Chosen, which is still a name I like, or something else with a bit more Fremen flavour?

Slvynn
Oct 23, 2009, 12:42 PM
Sounds nice imo

Ahriman
Oct 23, 2009, 01:10 PM
Can we rename the Riding the Worm tech and the Worm Rider unit? Worm Rider is something that young Fremen kids can do so it is not really a good name for a Fremen warrior UU.

The current requirement for Riding the Worm is Mind Training and Sand Worms and it leads to Water of Life. How about calling the tech Fremen Ways and the unit Naib's Chosen, which is still a name I like, or something else with a bit more Fremen flavour?

IIRC (and I may not), 12-year olds can ride on the worm, but not be the first to mount one.

Some renames seem reasonable.

I don't like "Fremen ways" as a tech name; everythnig the Fremen do are Fremen ways; its not like the Fremen don't have any ways until the midgame.
Maybe "Deep Desert Adaptation".

I've also suggest that mind training should be removed as a requirement for riding the worm - and maybe add it to water of life instead.

"Naib's chosen" sounds decent. And put a national limit 10 on it (like the Sardaukar legionaries and noukkers) to make them feel more elite and reduce spam.

It also feels wrong for Fremen to have a Shield Fighter (Fremen using shields?), and Crysknife fighter seems like it should be strong, not a weak raider.

How about we rename the strength 4 crysknife fighter to "Raider", or "Fremen Raider".
And then give Fremen a UU version of the Shield fighter that is identical, but call it Crysknife Fighter.

If we end up doing as I hope and removing scorpions, hornets, thopters and suspensors from Fremen, then they will need some more UUs.

I definitely think we need some variation in the worm graphics though; you can't identify *which* worm riding unit is in a stack by looking at it.
Adding some figures along the back of the worm would also make it feel more like a bunch of warriors, rather than just 1 guy.

arkham4269
Oct 24, 2009, 10:56 AM
I've been poking around the sub-forum and so far haven't found a forum to post this question/request.

Simply put is that I feel that scouts & thopters have it to easy. I say this only because in the books, there were many places in the desert that was just too much of a pain to get to. Now as someone who has been deployed to a very arid terrain, I can say that Dune would be hell on machines so seeing these scout thopters whizzing around Dune w/o any problem seems far-fetched and not really true to the book.

So here is my thoughts. I would think that if it's possible to code, would be that after 2 turns or so outside your cultural boundaries, units start taking damage every turn. Now that I think about it, I think perhaps it should be more of taking damage outside any cultural boundary or otherwise attacking other factions wouldn't happen. So sending your scout thopter our on a 'world tour' would mean you'd end up with a dead thopter pretty soon.

I mean I get the impression (it's implied) that when the Harkonen go after Muad'Dib's deep desert seitch, that they got the Guild to drop their troops via orbital insertion instead of actually flying all that way (which would most likely be detected). Again the books point out that there was areas of Arrakis that were unknown because the Fremen bribed the Guild to give inaccurate satellite pictures.

So by putting limits on scouts, you force players to have to do 'leap-frog' sort of scouting and many parts of the map might be "Here Be Dragons" sort of unknown which would benefit a second Fremen civ mentioned in another forum, especially going along with the idea that they would have benefits or abilities that would allow the faction to survive with less rocky ground. (As I mentioned in another forum, they might be sort of like the Pirates of SMAC:AC)

Also another quick observation is perhaps the code from FF/Orbis could be used to fiddle around with the Goblin Fort and turn it into a Smuggler's Cove where you could 'buy' units. Of course I think this would mean there would have to be a minor Smuggler's Civ you could be at peace with to work, but it would also be another spawning point for 'barbarians" as well as giving a burst of money (represented by spice from the smugglers) if you took it by force.

Ahriman
Oct 25, 2009, 09:39 AM
I say this only because in the books, there were many places in the desert that was just too much of a pain to get to.

Like what?

Consider the Arrakis mapscript. The places on the planet that are too much of a pain to get to are off-map; the map basically represents only the planet's arctic circle.
There aren't really any places inaccessible to thopters, but it takes time and fuel and mostly there isn't any value in going there (on earth, you *could* go out into the middle of the Sahara desert.... but why would you?).
And thopter can still only move a few tiles at a tile, so it is a pain for them to go long distances.
And there are storms that can destroy thopters if they get caught in them.
As for Fremen scouts, there isn't really anywhere the Fremen can't go; they can ride worms all the way from the north pole to the palmeries of the south pole (20 thumpers).

I would think that if it's possible to code, would be that after 2 turns or so outside your cultural boundaries, units start taking damage every turn

I think this would destroy the AI. The AI, on two separate islands, has to cross some open terrain to get to you, but their entire strike force gets damaged or destroyed on the way over because they don't understand that areas outside culture cause damage?
That sounds really bad for gameplay.

Or: you conquer an enemy city, it goes into revolt, and loses its cultural radius - so now any units in the surrounding tiles start taking damage?

I mean I get the impression (it's implied) that when the Harkonen go after Muad'Dib's deep desert seitch, that they got the Guild to drop their troops via orbital insertion instead of actually flying all that way (which would most likely be detected)
The Harkonnen don't; its the Sardaukar. And yes, its implied that its orbital insertion, but of course, if you have most of your forces in space, why wouldn't you just land right there?
That doesn't mean that you couldn't get there by flying, it just means its easier not to.
And again, all those central regions with the worst storms are not represented on the Arrakis map.

Again the books point out that there was areas of Arrakis that were unknown because the Fremen bribed the Guild to give inaccurate satellite pictures.

Well, they bribed the guild to not let anyone put satellites up. So nobody knew that they should bother trying to explore there. It doesn't mean they couldn't. And again, those regions are off-map.

So by putting limits on scouts, you force players to have to do 'leap-frog' sort of scouting

Why is this a desirable goal? Scouting isn't really that important in this game.

second Fremen civ mentioned in another forum
We removed the second Fremen civ a while back.

Also, the value of colonizing an area is primarily determined by its water resources. There is no gain in colonzing small rocks in the desert with no water, even for Fremen.

Also another quick observation is perhaps the code from FF/Orbis could be used to fiddle around with the Goblin Fort and turn it into a Smuggler's Cove where you could 'buy' units

Why? Nobody really hires smugglers as mercenaries in any of the Dune books, and we already have a cash-for-units mechanic with the Homeworld screen.

davidlallen
Oct 25, 2009, 09:33 PM
I would think that if it's possible to code, would be that after 2 turns or so outside your cultural boundaries, units start taking damage every turn.

That's an interesting idea. There is a related concept in HOTK, where certain terrain types -- swamp and marsh -- cause damage every turn. That is something the AI doesn't plan for, but it represents unforgiving terrain. In HOTK, it doesn't matter if the area is inside cultural borders or not. In general, maintenance isn't something that the Civ games try to model, but we can keep it on the list of possibilities.

I mean I get the impression (it's implied) that when the Harkonen go after Muad'Dib's deep desert seitch, that they got the Guild to drop their troops via orbital insertion instead of actually flying all that way (which would most likely be detected). Again the books point out that there was areas of Arrakis that were unknown because the Fremen bribed the Guild to give inaccurate satellite pictures.

We played around with a few ideas on this, which you can see in the older "spacer guild mechanics" thread. I tried a few things with satellite surveillance and orbital dropships. I couldn't get anything that seemed "fun", but we can certainly discuss more about that.

Ahriman
Oct 26, 2009, 07:20 AM
A possibility for dropships:
You could create an "Orbital insertion" unit from the Homeworld screen for like 250 gold, which was a transport with a large capacity (6?) that could paradrop in a 50 tile radius, and then died after dropping. So you're simulating paying the guild to (allow you to) drop a bunch of your troops somewhere from orbit.

AI wouldn't use it though.