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[BtS] Special Forces

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Mod Components' started by esemjay, Jan 30, 2008.

  1. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    Link at Bottom

    Note: This is now being integrated to WoC format.

    I was, overall, disappointed with the Guerrilla unit I found in another mod. Not because it wasn't a brilliant idea, but because the unit would require an entire mod around it in order to make it reasonable. I couldn't stand that I had an invisible unit that could anonymously abduct a worker unit... and turn them into my nationality standing in the middle of another nation's territory and the AI was never the wiser. I continued that cycle and wound up with over 50 worker units that I had "kidnapped", and nothing to do with them.

    Since I've always wanted a combat version of the Spy, I decided to give it a try. I did a little research to find a name that is most suited to the group, but settled on the generic "Special Forces" because, well, it's generic. It applies to all in-game civilizations.

    This isn't supposed to be a replacement for any units, because it has it's own set of abilities and rules. I specifically wanted the Special Forces unit to be the first choice for "flanking" the enemy and assaulting a poorly defended location that would have otherwise been unaccessible. I doubt it's completely balanced yet, so any input on that would be highly appreciated.

    Special Operations
    Starting Stats
    Spoiler :
    • National Unit (5 Allowed) - Scales with map size.
    • Invisible to most Units
    • Can see Special Forces
    • Can see Guerrillas
    • No Results from Tribal Huts
    • Can explore rival territory
    • Immune to First Strikes
    • Ignores terrain movement cost
    • 75% Chance to Withdraw from Combat
    • Can move through impassable terrain.
    • 14 :strength:
    • 2 :move:


    Requirements
    Spoiler :
    • Building: Military Academy (In the city)
    • Technology: Fascism
    • Technology: Industrialism
    • Technology: Rifling
    • 160 :hammers:


    Images
    Spoiler :




    Missions
    Spoiler :
    • Raid - For a price, will immediately destroy all repairable (Not Towns, Villages, or Hamlets) and routes (Roads and Railroads) in the tile. Odds for success and capture are calculated independently- failure to complete the mission means your money went to waste. Failure to escape undetected means that you suffer a reputation penalty with the target civilization.

      Icon is a picture of C4 Explosives.
    • Extract - For a price, the unit will be immediately transported from it's current tile to the capital. Price increases with distance from capital, and has a modifier for whether the unit is in Friendly, Neutral or Hostile territory.

      Icon is a picture of a Blackhawk Helicopter.

      Costs: 2MP
    • Train Guerrillas - For a price, will train indigenous forces for the previous owner of a city. Larger cities provide more troops; number of troops based on the amount of unhappiness due to wanting to rejoin the mother country. These units will only live, by default, for 5 turns. After the 5 turns, the units will disappear.

      Icon is a splice between Worker and Marine icons.

      Costs: 3MP
    • MP - Governing mechanic for the SO unit. The button is always available, even when the mission is not. The tool tip displays the amount of Mission Points (MP) you have; when in a city, these regenerate at a rate of 1MP per turn that the unit has not moved. Alternatively, while in a city that you own, the MP can be instantly regenerated by using the button.

      Failing a mission does not cost MP.

      Icon is an image of two 50-cal rounds and the letters "MP".

    Guerrilla
    Starting Stats
    Spoiler :
    • National Unit (10 Allowed) - Scales with map size.
    • Invisible to most Units
    • Can see Guerrillas
    • No Results from Tribal Huts
    • Can explore rival territory
    • Ignores terrain movement cost
    • 50% Chance to Withdraw from Combat
    • 12 :strength:
    • 2 :move:


    Requirements
    Spoiler :
    • Building: Military Academy (In the city)
    • Technology: Fascism
    • Technology: Nationalism
    • Technology: Rifling
    • 160 :hammers:

    ToDo (Maybe)
    • Give the SO unit some combat-related missions it can run. (In Progress).
    • Force SF units to become visible under certain circumstances. Probably random chance while within enemy territory, and a modifier for when they are "stumbled upon". 100% chance on mission fail.
    • Let the SO unit ride on submarines.
    • Maybe give them the ability to toggle invisibility. Decided against it
    • Give them a chance to start a war while in friendly territory.
    • Increase the production cost of the SO unit.
    • Add a new tech for both the SpecOps and Guerrillas units.

    Known Issues
    1. When attempting a Raid on a plot where the Improvement cannot be destroyed (such as Towns), the code tells the unit he can still perform the action, and, when the action button is clicked, it can still call success or failure. Furthermore, you can still gain experience for doing nothing! Fixed.
    2. Not a bug, but don't you think it's strange that you take damage from capturing workers? Fixed
    3. When using the Extract Unit action button, it will return text on "mission completion". This should be changed to reflect the fact that this particular action is not a true mission. Perhaps, change to "the extraction was a success", for example. New Text for Extract
    4. Upon extracting, the unit can still move. This should be set to No Moves after the action is completed. Fixed
    5. Upon completing a successful Raid, you gain XP immediately instead of on the next turn like every other unit in Civ 4! Fixed

    Download - (.rar)
    The DLL and source come separately from the rest of the package. The Unit is still usable, but in order to get some of the better features (I.E. Capture a city with the Special Forces unit) you will need to download the SDK separately.)

    08.02.28a is Not backwards compatible.
    Special Warfare v08.02.28a (1.72 MB)
     
  2. lamppost4

    lamppost4 Holder of the Light

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    Could you post the strength rating you gave it?
     
  3. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    24 :strength:
    2 :move:

    :Edit:
    I forgot to mention, the unit uses a modified Navy SEAL skin on the model.

    I already know that if you don't have animations enabled, the skin reverts to the "normal" SEAL skin, and I don't know how to fix this. If I can get some information on this, I'll fix it and upload the revised version.
     
  4. avain

    avain (key)

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    National Unit (15 Allowed)

    Way too much.
    I'd lower the number to 3.
    (If you can, tie it to the size of the map, or the number of barracks in your empire - but certainly no more than 5)
     
  5. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    I was thinking 15 might be a bit much, as well; there's really not a reason to have that many (except as reserves). Are you saying to have 3 on small maps, and 5 on Huge, if I can figure out how?
     
  6. avain

    avain (key)

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    Yes, something like that.
     
  7. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    Sorry, I forgot that sometimes the AI or players will get a stack of the same unit and attack with it- and that this would be ridiculously overpowered in a stack of 15. I've only tested it with two stacks of 2. I'm going to go ahead and lower that to 5.
     
  8. DrJambo

    DrJambo Crash-test dummy

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    How does the AI use this unit? Individually or as part of their stacks of doom? If the latter, then essentially it's not being used to its full potential.
     
  9. genine

    genine Warlord

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    Good idea esamjay!Is it possible to link it to the number of barracks you have? this could be a valid parameter for army size!1 SF / 4 barracks for example!
     
  10. Darque

    Darque Chaotic Lord of Dragonia

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    Nice concept. I think it would also be a good idea to allow this unit to run some espionage missions, such as sabotaging improvements and buildings.
     
  11. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    I haven't run a whole lot of "extensive" testing with it, but it seems that the AI will cheat and just "create" these without actually having to "build" them. I haven't seen the AI using them properly as an offensive unit yet, but the AI does like to stack this unit into weaker groups, and you won't find out until you're right next to one.

    I'm pretty sure this has to do with the AI's:

    Spoiler AI :

    Code:
    			<DefaultUnitAI>UNITAI_ATTACK</DefaultUnitAI>
    
    Code:
    			<UnitAIs>
    				<UnitAI>
    					<UnitAIType>UNITAI_ATTACK</UnitAIType>
    					<bUnitAI>1</bUnitAI>
    				</UnitAI>
    				<UnitAI>
    					<UnitAIType>UNITAI_ATTACK_CITY</UnitAIType>
    					<bUnitAI>1</bUnitAI>
    				</UnitAI>
    				<UnitAI>
    					<UnitAIType>UNITAI_RESERVE</UnitAIType>
    					<bUnitAI>1</bUnitAI>
    				</UnitAI>
    				<UnitAI>
    					<UnitAIType>UNITAI_CITY_DEFENSE</UnitAIType>
    					<bUnitAI>1</bUnitAI>
    				</UnitAI>
    			</UnitAIs>
    


    I haven't found a very comprehensive list of AI's I can use; but it's very mix-and-match and I'm open to suggestions.

    Thanks ^_^. I'm sure it's possible, but not without using python at the least. I'm definitely going to look into this, though.

    I was considering giving it the ability to run espionage missions, but I thought it might somewhat obsolete the spy unit; so to simulate the sabotaging, I gave it "Bombard". If I find out how, I may end up giving the Special Forces unit it's own set of missions and promotions.
     
  12. surdanis

    surdanis Sergeant

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    Thoughts for this unit:

    1. It should be renamed to Spec Ops since Special Forces is actually the name of a specific Spec Ops unit here in the US (You may know them as the Green Berets).
    2. Withdraw chance should be really high since this is a small unit (75%?)
    3. Paradrop should be possible (Though I dunno how you'll do that!)
    4. Since they are classed as Recon (?), they should be able to load onto Submarines.
    5. They should start with Amphibious Assault (or whatever it's called).
    6. The Guerilla unit you mentioned should be available that is much cheaper than the SF unit with a higher limit to how many can be produced (So weaker nations can take on stronger nations).
    7. The above mentioned Guerilla unit should not be able to see Spies, Great Spies, or SF units (The SF units can swoop in on Guerillas!)
    8. SF can see Spies, Great Spies--and kill them! (Though I wonder how you'll do this one)
     
  13. Grishnash

    Grishnash Mad Scientist

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    Some ideas for this unit.
    Strength should be 12 or around (SF is not a full size army, no way they can take a marine platoon. And would be to powerful being invisable.)
    Tech require should be: Communism/Fascism/, one or both of these techs. Don't know why they would need rockets or aircraft.
    Agree. You can give it the old CIV4 spy missions so that it's dose not obsolete the BTS spy. Thing about that is that I don't know how you would be able to go onto a city if your at war with the civ? (I tryed it, but could only attack the defending unit.)
    If caught in friendly land should have a chance to start a war. (Not sure the UK would like to find a American SOp in London.)

    Other then that, good unit! I already made one of my own use but this is good. :goodjob: :goodjob:
     
  14. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    1: Good point, I'll rename that in the next upload.
    2: If I up the withdraw chance, I will have to lower the :strength: to match.
    3: I actually took out the Paradrop ability, because I couldn't figure out how to stick the paratrooper's paradrop animation to the NavySeal skeleton, without giving the SF unit all Paratrooper animations. If someone can do that for me, or [point me towards someone who] can tell me how to add Paratrooper animations to the NavySeal skeleton, I'll put this ability back in. Right now, if I enable a paradrop, the unit will just appear at the tile.
    4: I actually didn't classify them as "Recon," but it makes sense that they could get on submarines anyways, since there's no stealth transport.
    5: I considered that, but I didn't know if that would make them overlap Marines too much. Aside from that, since they have 2 movement points anyways, I felt that it made it easy to just side-step the target and then assault in one turn, taking away the need to have Amphib in the first place.
    6-8: The Spies could probably be killed with a +100% chance to find spies; but I didn't include the Guerrilla unit with the SF unit.

    I will lower the Strength and up the Withdraw chance in the next upload; it does make more sense to have weak assault if it already has such strong recon.

    The reason it first required Flight and Rocketry was because it had Paradrop-7, while regular Paratroopers have Paradrop-5. Now that the SF unit doesn't have paradrop, those requirements are irrelevant; I don't know why I didn't change them then, though... :S Thanks for catching that.

    Too lazy to launch Vanilla Civ4, but the site says that the vanilla missions are:
    • Investigate City
    • Destroy Production
    • Sabotage Improvement
    • Steal Plans
    They seem a little out of place for this unit. I would rather assemble unique missions for the SF unit to undertake; the main problem is that I haven't been able to think of enough (read: "Any") unique abilities for the unit that would fit the role.

    I like that idea.

    Thanks for the feedback you two! :D

    I'll get to work on those suggestions.
     
  15. surdanis

    surdanis Sergeant

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    They seem a little out of place for this unit. I would rather assemble unique missions for the SF unit to undertake; the main problem is that I haven't been able to think of enough (read: "Any") unique abilities for the unit that would fit the role.

    Woah, you seem like you really know what you're doing, man. Kudos what work you've already done. However, in response what missions Spec Ops should undertake, you must consider that IRL there are a variety, depending on the type of Spec Ops unit. For instance, Navy SEALS typically perform reconnaissance (not quite the same as intelligence, which I'll touch upon if you like in a later post) and direct action (a.k.a. raids). I think the latter should be key to what major role of Spec Ops in Civ 4 should be. (As a side note, the Navy SEALS unique unit for America should NOT replace the Marine! If anything, you should make them a unique American unit to replace the regular Spec Ops unit you are creating now!) Other Spec Ops might also be involved, like the Special Forces or the new MARSOC (Marine Special Operations Command) FMTU's (Foreign Military Training Units) in the training of IF's (Indigenous Forces or "indigs": that is, natives) in military tactics and such. However, this, along with hostage rescue (like Delta or like DEVGRU (formerly Seal Team Six)) might be beyond the scope of your particular unit in a game like Civ 4.

    So, direct action missions, which we can call raids. What are they? Raids are defined as limited engagements that are not meant to necessarily attrit the enemy, but to severely destroy their war capabilities or assets. For example, the British Royal Marines in WWII were involved in one mission where they destroyed German freighters on the Continent, disrupting their supply lines. Raids are somewhat already available in the form of the Spy's Sabotage Mission or simply by Pillaging. However, there are important differences. With Pillaging, you can only destroy improvements and in a certain order. Furthermore, you receive money from it, and you are forced to use a visible unit. That's hardly a raid, as they tend to strike hard and fast and without warning--nor would you ever get a monetary benefit, since there's no looting. As for the Spy mission, it is perhaps the closest you can get to a raid, because once it's performed successfully, the spy returns unharmed to the capital. But I'm sure you know that there is some degree of risk involved with raids, and so there you should modify the mission slightly so that the unit may or may not take damage upon being extracted from the mission area. If it's too difficult to modify it, then you can simply include the Spy Sabotage Mission as it is written for the Spy.

    That being said, most Spec Ops units don't take the enemy head on. If anything, they try to avoid the enemy. Delta isn't going to take on a Marine unit if it can avoid it. Generally, a recon mission that fails leads to the mission being aborted, followed by a hasty extraction. Some units, such as the Rangers, ARE designed to fight the enemy. While they are considered a Special Operations unit (along with the MEU-SOC's, which are Marine Expeditionary Units-Special Operations Capable), they do not really fall into the commando type unit you seem to be producing here. If anything the Ranger of the US Army is the exact same unit as the Paratrooper. In fact, BTS should have replaced the regular Paratrooper for the Americans with a Ranger. Their job is to paradrop behind enemy lines and perform raids. They may also hold terrain as necessary (which I actually do often when fighting with them in the game!) to block enemy units.

    Finally, there is Counter-Terrorism. This involves things like hostage rescue missions. Sometimes, it involves rooting out the enemy where they hide, snatching key figures or terminating them with extreme prejudice. This is the reason, I think you said, for the genesis of this unit. You created it in response to the Guerilla unit.

    Therefore, I ask that you include the Guerilla unit--or make your own. We gamers, I'm sure, would love to take out terrorists or Guerillas, or whatever, you wanna call them, with our new Spec Ops unit! The Guerillas could have unique missions such as Assassinate Great Person, Assassinate Leader (which might be performed in the enemy civ's capital city only, and might cause unhappiness among the civ's citizens), Destroy Wonder. They might also have some regular Spy missions like Foment Unhappiness and Incite Revolution. Lastly, the ultimate unique mission would be Nuke, which might act a Tactical Nuke. The enslavement of enemy Workers seems silly, but if you wanted to keep it, the Spec Ops unit would be there to "rescue" them! Therefore, you would need to tag captured Workers because a Spec Ops unit wouldn't go out and just kidnap anyone!

    So, basically, your Spec Ops missions would boil down to destroying Guerillas/Terrorists (where the Spec Ops unit would enter the same square as the Guerilla/Terrorist and perform a Destroy Mission by clicking on the highlighted button and thus initiating instant destruction of the enemy unit) and raiding via Sabotage Improvement or Sabatoge Building (like the Spy but with the above mentioned modification), and Rescue Hostage (by entering the same square as a specially tagged Worker that was "kidnapped" by the enemy Civ's Guerrilla and clicking on the highlighted button to instantly return the hostage to friendly lands). They might also have a Sabotage Unit Mission, which allows them to engage in combat with any unit type other than a Guerilla/Terrorist. The unit might, therefore, strike an enemy Destroyer and sink it while docked! With all these missions, however, the unit should be allowed instant extraction (much like the Spy) to the player's capital. The Spec Ops unit could fail and still be extracted though.

    Anyway, I hope this helps. I would really love to see the Guerilla/Terrorist unit included with the Spec Ops unit in another mod pack, perhaps.

    BTW, does you know how to make transport helicopters? Their absence in the game has been bugging me.
     
  16. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    I didn't tldr you for everything up to this:

    Attached is a transport helicopter that I found, while looking for an APC. The AI doesn't use it very well, though.
     

    Attached Files:

  17. surdanis

    surdanis Sergeant

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    thanks. i was looking at this earlier, and wondered if it was more than just a graphic. i'll see if it actually works--assuming you tested yourself!

    apologies for not making the previous post easier to read.
     
  18. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    The helicopter works; I use it myself- but there's a problem with the AI using transports on land. While looking through the code, there is data that (if I am interpreting it correctly) prohibits the AI to use transports on land.

    You can fit 4 Transport Helo's on a Transport Ship; and 2 Land Units into a Transport Helo. However, the Helo has to be empty in order to board the ship. The only issue I have with it, is that if it's attacked, I believe the units inside the Helo will hop out and defend.

    Don't worry about the legibility of your previous post, though. It gives me a lot of information that, honestly, I need.
     
  19. surdanis

    surdanis Sergeant

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    sry, i can't figure out how to get this thing to show up in the game. where do i put the files? and what should it look like in the directory? i currently have it under docs/mygames/bts/mods/MI26/...
     
  20. esemjay

    esemjay Prince

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    Oh, sorry about that... navigate to your

    *BTS Folder*/Mods/

    Create:
    /MI26/Assets/Modules/Custom Units/

    and extract to there. The unit is in Plug and Play format, so if you enable Modular in the INI file that Civ will generate after loading the mod, then it should work for you.
     

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