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Comments and Suggestion about Unattended gathering, combat, etc.

Discussion in 'CivWorld - General Discussions' started by tomza, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. tomza

    tomza Chieftain

    Joined:
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    Hi everyone, this is my first post so I'm not sure how many of you will take what I have to say seriously. So I'll preface by mentioning that I do have a lot of gaming experience. I've laddered seriously in a lot of strategy games and I have been the raid leaders, guild leaders and officers in many MMO's including Ultima Online, Everquest and Warcraft at the highest levels (World firsts, etc.) I am very used to optimizing strategy and utilizing everything at my disposal.

    I'd like to thank 2K Games for putting out a fun and interesting game. Although there are some imbalance issues, it was enjoyable and interesting. I will mention a few that I think are important, and hopefully add a few suggestions that will fix a few things.

    The main issues I wish to address include are Macroing and unattended resource gathering and Combat distribution.

    Gripe #1 - Macroing and unattended resource gathering

    Well, in my first game, I had to gain a bit of knowledge before unattended resource gathering could become effective. While in my first game, I met a player named JingL. I was actually in a different alliance at the time, but I was questioning their judgment and decision making ability, and I asked if she wished to team up. She taught me the ropes and showed me the basics, such as team-mazing, battling, etc.

    A week later, my game finished and I could finally play with my friends that had asked me to join. This time we were smarter, had a basic game plan. We would jump around, steal Barbarian kills, try to get early money to buy GP's, then do rites... However, I noticed in the beginning that my macro was getting a lot more resources, so to test this out, I made another account to compare the rates. After the first few hours, my main account had 8 population, while the alternate account had 4.

    The 4 population account was much faster. I ran some tests, and I decided that I would macro both of my screens on the 4 population account. I could keep increasing the population of my main account to gain more harvest/trickle, but maintain the same bonus bubble rate.

    I recorded data overtime and my results will be listed in the 2nd post of this thread. Basically here is a jpg of what I can do: (I saw the contest 10 minutes late, so I had to set up my macro, and do everything...)



    While an skilled player could possibly overcome an unskilled player utilizing sub-optimal macro practices... no skilled team could ever come close to touching a team of similar skill that macros. If this wasn't my second game, I would have utilized a more efficient way to divide my resources, and conquer most of the first page of technology on day 1. Instead, we did team mazes, with some timed Voyage of Discoveries and Auctions. I was inefficient and had over 20,000 production sitting. Very inefficient for those who understand the dynamics of a strategy game. At the end of the game, I only used up about 30,000 of the 80,000-90,0000 production I collected over the course of the game (Game lasted 3 days?). Had I converted the production to science, it would have been over much faster due to more bonus maze moves and team-mazing.

    While a large part of the success is due to the team working together with mazes, one part that can not be overlooked is that while doing the mazes, one player can make a huge difference by providing a large amount of protection. However if I did not have a team, I could have also macro'ed science for maze moves, and finished a lot of the research myself.

    Here is the result of our game:








    Gripe #2 - Combat distribution

    I have played a lot of slower combat games such as Close combat: Duty too far, starcraft, etc on ladder. There are many aspects of combat in Civ World that require much strategy which I enjoy (wonder usage, timing of fights, maximum production/power costs, weather changes, production saving, stances, resource hoarding, etc). However, I do not like the strategy of small stack usage.

    I'm sure many of you know how ridiculous and unfair it is, especially for newer casual players. Most teams have their army divided into many smaller units. Better players stack most of their units and leave many stacks of "1" to limit how much damage others can do.

    Suggestions:
    1) Do not allow bonus resource collection on other player's screens
    -As a guild leader/raid leader, I don't want people to do things that would limit team success. As such, if I were leading a team of macro'ers, I would have each person get as much population as they could, maximizing their Harvest/trickle rates. However 1 person would remain a lower population and have everyone macro on his screen. This suggestion would stop that strategy from working.

    2) Limit amount of bonus resource collection - on a sliding scale
    - After collecting a set amount of resources in a day, slow down the bubble rate. This way people who legitimately collect bubbles can do it, however those who macro will be great slowed.

    3) Make a different mini game for bonus collection
    - I've read the threads where people have written programs to do the puzzles, so maybe something fun that people will enjoy. I know that even if you make something like Duck Hunt for bonus food, people will cheat and write programs/scripts - but your money/caravan game is great!

    4) Make combat more intuitive for beginners
    - For me, I picked it up easily, however for newer players, this would scare them. Cater to casuals and teams (ie, letting them put many stacks of 20 - and being as effective as someone with a bunch of 1 stacks and a 100 stack), however keeping things like effective wonder usage, stances would give advanced players something to do. While doing simple things like adding a tooltip to explainin about how turns work would help newbies.

    Rational for change:
    A lot of the Civ World population are casual players. They aren't like me, trying to do whatever it takes to win. They just want to have fun, and I know that me doing this would totally demoralize even more advanced players. Being crushed like this is no fun, and I hope that the game keeps changing to be more friend towards these players and the rest of Beta goes well! Thanks again to my teammates and had a fun time playing with everyone (even if I was a mean poopie head and made the game un-fun).



    Here is some additional data:

    This is what my 4 pop screen looked like on the very first day. My 8 population was very similar in production values.



    For this data, I show the relative rates of production gain per hour for a 4 population macro'er versus an 8 population macro'er. After seeing how slow it was for an 8 pop macro'er, I decided to macro on 4 pop account on both screens. And it indeed gave me 3k resources an hour.


    (I'm aware that the last data points skew the R-value, but meh :p).

    For this data, I show that a regular person without macro'ing only gains about 2000 in a single resource in 7 hours. A macro'er gains about 5500. While I can utilize everything and gain twice as much as a regular macro'er and 6 times as much as a normal player.

     
  2. Verdisian

    Verdisian Chieftain

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    Very interesting stuff.
     
  3. DarkSpell

    DarkSpell Chieftain

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    I'm sorry, i read your entire post and i'm not sure if i got this right: you saying your pop of 4 is more efficient than a pop of 8? How? Because the formula for the trickle income suggests that the more pop you have, the more resources you get. Unless you mean is that the more pop the less bubbles, and when you are macroing, bubles poping > trickle. Did i get it right?

    Also, i'm not sure what your strategy was. You focused your whole economy on production, and sold everything to get Science and went through the whole game with science victories, is that it? In just 3 days?

    One last thing, can you elaborate on your combat strategy please? You're saying to use one huge stack to attack and small stacks (one unit only?) to defend to minimze damage, but how can you tell which one attacks and which one defends?
     
  4. tomza

    tomza Chieftain

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    A 4 population is much much more productive with just the bubble popping macros than a 8-12 population early on with harvesting and trickle. Note that a 4 population also gets trickle and harvests. At the end of the first night, I obtained over 20000 production. My first graph shows that you are able to get 3 times as many bubbles in a 4 population compared to an 8. And possibly 6 times as many as a 12. And Bubble popping is a much larger proportion of your resources as seen in Chart 2.

    I should have used the macro on science early on to get extra maze moves to finish the mazes to gift bonus moves to my friends... We would have gotten to maybe Religion on the first night, rather than wait til night 2.

    I mostly ran mazes with friends, utilizing the bonus given from the mazes for extra moves for science. The production I had was used as a deterrent to stop other countries from wanting to invade us. We went straight for Mass Media, even getting ahead in Technology era wins. After Mass Media and Hollywood were built, we warred every nation with wonders and > 10 population.

    The Combat strategy consisted of waiting til the last possible moment, or even til battle started to purchase units that were the most efficient in terms of cost:power + weather bonus. I asked my teammates to add stacks of 1 units in each other slot, while I would mostly fill with the most efficient stack. Each stack has an equal chance of being picked to deal and receive damage, so as long as the smaller stacks are picked to take damage, it meant losing less production. I fought close wars in my first game with a 2 person civ crushing multiple 20 man civs in consecutive fights due to this and other strategies. In my second game, I didn't have to bother as my units in non-heroic gave a 10:1 stack advantage.

    It doesn't matter the size of the stack - a 1 stack will deal as much damage as a 1000 stack. The overall strength of your army determines how often your turns are. So as long as we had about a 10:1 ratio in terms of army strength, the other team never went. (I never even spent more than 50% of my production until the end when I wanted to screen cap the power). In actuality, we probably had over 10000 attack strength, due to the unit score bug.

    Normally I would not show my strategy, however I am no longer playing due to being busy with school. Plus with this being a beta, by posting, I hope that the dev's realize how unfair unattended macroing and how a skilled person may one day use this mechanic to win. I posted this on their normal forums... it was up for a bit, but taken down (maybe awaiting moderator approval?). Anyhow, I am not providing either the scripts or programs, just information about the imbalances.
     
  5. Verdisian

    Verdisian Chieftain

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    Yes he's saying that the macro bubble popping+harvest+trickle of a low population civ is > the trickle+harvest+bubble pop of a higher pop civ.

    For combat he's saying its better for people to have 1 stack of 100 and 3 stacks of 1 than 4 stacks of 25. The damage whichever attacker is chosen will be the same regardless of its stack size, but if a 1 stack gets attacked it can only lose the 1 unit. Which can easily be replaced by building another unit and tossing it right back in the same slot to hopefully waste another of your opponent's attacks later.
     
  6. Verdisian

    Verdisian Chieftain

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    Thanks you tomza for the actual statistics on bubble popping. Good hard data is appreciated.
     
  7. repeatoffender

    repeatoffender Chieftain

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    will be my last post on this forum because this thread only serves to show why the game is a complete waste of time and I'm betting, since it's in open beta, that there will be no significant changes whatsoever to the mechanics by firaxis / 2kgaming / sid or whoever is in charge of this monstrosity. 2 years to develop this? Really??

    Let's just go through and list the broken mechanics:

    1. bubble popping can net you 500-1500 resources per hour and can be done with a macro program. Even worse - you can keep 1 person in your civ with a pop4 city and have the entire civ bubble pop off their screen and net 1500/hr each on their high pop cities.

    2. combat.. what a joke. the stacking mechanics alone are completely broken but then you throw in a defense minister position which does nothing and the ability to quick research techs or wonders to quickly change the tides of battle.. on a game that's supposed to be about casual play.. really...

    3. tech mazing is broken beyond belief. As stated, simply chain maze to a 3 day victory.. eh...

    Don't even feel the need to elaborate further.. can't believe this abomination wears the civ title.. not going to be buying or playing any future civ games ever again. it's all become a money grab with no regard for quality.
     
  8. DarkSpell

    DarkSpell Chieftain

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    Okay, one more thing i don't get: why does a bubbles economy > trickle economy, when its low on pop? What is the logic in the that? Sure this is some mistake that when you are low on pop the game is programmed to show up more bubles so you can have more stuff to do, right? Then this is going to be fixed in one patch sooner or later. They won't change the basics of the game, but they'll sure fix the ratio of bubs/pop to balance it out.

    Also, did you manage all that by yourself or did you use some sort of program to pop all the bubbles?
     
  9. Verdisian

    Verdisian Chieftain

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    Yes he used a macro to do it, he did not click the bubbles himself.

    I wouldn't assume that they're going to fix it any time soon.
     
  10. Tatran

    Tatran Deity

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    I had that kind of players(=fame whores) also in some of my games.
    They are sooo selfish that you can't trust them in a team.
    One of them wasted a huge amount of science + maze moves of other team players
    only to get an era victory as king.

    To the OP : you're not a player, and you'll never be one.
     
  11. Creepy Old Man

    Creepy Old Man Warlord

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    No, his entire team was coordinating and playing to win to an extent far beyond what any player I've seen yet has attempted. Look at his first screen shot, in which he shows his civ. Every single one of those players has a high score above the first place score in the only game I've finished.

    Most of his techniques (maze cooperation, bubbling on small players, combat) are dependent upon coordination and teamwork. He is part of a TEAM.

    He mentioned his experience in other games. I remember in World of Warcraft, when they released the level 80 expansion, everyone was amazed because one player reached level 80 in about 16 hours. This is because the TEAM worked together to achieve a goal. It was incidental that one particular player received the high level or high fame score or whatever. Next time they play, some other player will get the winning fame.

    To Tatran: the OP acheive what he did because he's far more of a team player than you'll ever be.
     
  12. sadmachines

    sadmachines Warlord

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    Maybe you missed this bit:

    "no skilled team could ever come close to touching a team of similar skill that macros"

    He made his cheating explicitly clear.
     
  13. Tatran

    Tatran Deity

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    Dream on, Creepy Old Man.
    That's not how it works when you play with these kind of "players".
    They play to win all the time (if they have the time) and they won't give anything away if that goal is in danger.

    Btw, I remember JingL, we were in the same civ in another game and that went very well. :)
     
  14. Creepy Old Man

    Creepy Old Man Warlord

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    Do you think he found seven random people to achieve the sort of coordination he's talking about? No. Those are people he's played with regularly, probably for years, across many games. He's not going to screw them over for a personal goal. Can you show me any evidence in his post that he achieved his fame (or anything else) without willing assistance of his team?
     
  15. tomza

    tomza Chieftain

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    My friend's didn't care. Heck, I didn't even care about the fame. We all just played to win the game as a team. I didn't even have the fame lead til about 2/3 of the way through the game because I didn't care. At the end, I just happened to get all the fame because I had the army because I was the only one macro'ing production - so it kept making me the king after each battle. In fact, I didn't know about this game, they kept asking me to come here and play with them!

    A large part of our win was a team win, and even the battles were a team win. We coordinated the times, and put in GP's together we collected throughout the game so we could get each wonder one at a time. This way we wouldn't get 2 wonders and skip a cultural win. I didn't even have to use a lot of the production I macro'ed because we Team Mazed and got a 20+ tech lead. Having the longbow / better defensive units prevented any team from attacking us. In the end, it was the macro'ed production that finished the game though.

    And for me "play to win" means to play as a team, gaining fame was not my goal. My "win" meant for all of my team to crush every other Civ. I'd sacrifice my own personal goals/gear, like I've done in many other games, if it meant it would make my guild stronger. I let my team win auctions if it meant they would get more science, gold, etc out of the item. I let my team win the contests because they wanted the fame. I only did 125 point double swaps on the puzzles because it would give each of my teammates +25 culture. I had a stack of about 250,000 science and sat around with it for a long time because it would be a huge waste for me to go into the smaller 100,000 science. So I sat around buying their science so we could fit in and waste as little as possible.

    Sometimes being a leader means showing sacrifice and leading by example. This time it just happened that I was forced to keep the leader crown due to the way the game mechanics work. I honestly don't care about being a "player". I just want my team to win, and I'll do whatever it takes to make anyone not on my team cry about it.

    Like I said, there are some aspects to this game I like a lot, but some aspects need a little refinement. Two that I thought needed a bit of change were combat and macroing. I probably won't play anymore because my classes are starting, but it has been an enjoyable experience. I hope the developers do use some of my suggestions.

    And to the other person that said "macroing" is cheating. It isn't. That is why I'm posting here. Macroing should fixed, but 2k games is doing nothing about it. If you aren't willing to take advantage of something that won't make you banned, fine. I put the data here to show the obvious disparities in hopes that they will take a strong stance on it.
     
  16. tomza

    tomza Chieftain

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    I made the post so that they would see this and fix it. The game is still in Beta stages, meaning it is our job to try to do whatever we can to break it and show them the data so they can fix it and make it better!
     
  17. Verdisian

    Verdisian Chieftain

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    He was up front about his use of macros, and gave valuable data from it not only to us but to the devs as well. I don't really see what the point of insulting him about it is. Nor does the fact that he used macros have anything to do with his ability to work with a team.

    I also don't really see whats wrong with someone playing for themselves. That is the way the game was designed after all. Different people get enjoyment from playing different ways. Thinking that your method of play is the "correct" one is just narrow-minded.
     
  18. Glinda

    Glinda Warlord

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    Oh, the IRONY. You could have been part of a TEAM, too, dude, but you chose to burn your teammates. And now you're preaching teamwork? Hallelujah, praise the Lord.

    Moderator Action: No more bickering, please.
    Please read the forum rules: http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=422889
     
  19. DarkSpell

    DarkSpell Chieftain

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    Can i know which macro program you used? I mean did you write it yourself or you donwload it from somewhere?

    Can i have it?
     
  20. bronzeager

    bronzeager Chieftain

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    this is really great stuff...I hope the devs read this and fix the game accordingly!
     

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