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Fulano's MoO2Civ Minimod

Discussion in 'Civ4 - MOO2Civ' started by fulano, Feb 18, 2010.

  1. fulano

    fulano Chieftain

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    This post is way long, but I'd love to see comments on it's contents! This is a recap of the questions I would especially like to see comments on if you (the current reader) don't have time to read the whole thing.
    Spoiler :
    -Should diplomacy options just be put in a free tech that is given to everybody in the beginning?
    -Does Final Frontier use the large icons referred to in the XML files? Does it depend on graphics settings?
    -Would you rather see the traditional webbed tech tree or the split tech tree into fields like this minimod has?


    Thanks for the feedback Deon, it is very welcome to have lots of input on what to improve. :goodjob: You've got lots of great ideas on how to improve the game!
    They're ship components, not promotions. ;) In Masters of Orion 2 you built custom ships using these components rather than pre-designed units that most games have. I plan to change the unit system in MoO2Civ further so you will only be picking a ship hull that has an engine and a base strength. Once it is built you will 'design' it to be for scouting, attacking stars, fighting other ships, etc. using ship components. Any ship would be able to carry missiles and squadrons, bombard, cause collateral or flanking. They would just need the promotions to give them the ability.

    CyberChrist is working on a ship design screen that will let you choose a number of components based on ship size, before experience is counted. This way it will be possible to get more than just one 'promotion' per level.

    There are lots of buildings that I will add in my next version of the minimod, especially in the Sociology and Biology tree. (see the New Technology Ideas thread) . I left room for these new techs when I designed the tech tree, that is why there are so many holes in it.

    I figured all the civics in one tech would bug Civ4 players. :mischief: All the civics are in one tech because I didn't know where to put them as I designed the new tech tree and nobody currently in this forum suggested any ideas. You've made some awesome suggestions that have given me great ideas. I'll post more about these ideas later once they are planned out.

    I agree! MoO2Civ needs new icons! I haven't done much icon changing, it's out of my scope of interest. :D

    CyberChrist said he was planning on getting new ones by grabbing icons from other games. Maybe you should PM him and let him know you can design new icons. I would prefer to see original artwork for this mod rather than copying other games (except copying stuff from Master of Orion games :) ).

    You are welcome to start work on custom icons for objects in the game (ship parts, buildings, etc.) I would like the tech icons to match whatever they enable so I don't think you need to create new icons for only the tech. I personally prefer icons to be in the 'atlas' format. I think it is easier to deal with. Does Final Frontier even use the large icons referred to in the XML files? Most everything in this mod just has the transport icon for the large icon.

    I love the idea, I don't know how to balance speed settings though, and I probably won't get around to making many changes in the near future.

    The AI races to those techs because they all like culture only. Minor Annoyance has made new AI personalities that fix that.

    I do think things need rearranged in the tech tree for several reasons, one so it can be more compact. I want to limit each tech line to only three choices so the whole tech tree can be reduced in size. I plan to add the new stuff, then move stuff around to fill in holes, and even remove a tech line entirely. (I personally think Sociology should stay, but physics seems a little unneeded, or force fields).

    I personally would rather see all the diplomacy options given in a free tech that everybody starts with. What do you guys think of that?

    I guarantee I'll beat your fleet if you just focus on titans and production while I get better components from the rest of the tech tree. ;) It's easy to get a ship that is 100% stronger than new ships, even with the experience promotions rather than ship components. The AI doesn't seem to know that though and focuses on buildings more. (The new AI personalities Minor Annoyance made should help a lot with that!)

    Masters of Orion had a player choose between two or three techs at a time in each field while Civ4 has you choose among the entire tree. Usually a player just choose the cheapest tech field, making choosing techs much easier than the traditional webbed tech tree. I still think I would rather keep the separated techs but make sure each column of techs has choices that benefit each playing style.

    I haven't played FFH, Maybe I should take a look to see what you mean.



    I plan to post details on changes based on this discussion here. It will take me a while to plan out the changes though.
     
  2. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    Never tried playing above Impossible yet; I guess you're an aggressive player (I'm more of a builder.)

    I think we're generally in agreement (I am very curious to see how this'll work out). As to

    I don't think so: it's very un-MoO-like and I prefer it to be available through research.

    Sorry, I've no idea...

    I very much like the minimod's tech tree design, even if it could be improved upon.

    Nor do I. It's not my experience that the AI has a culture preference at all (even before the minimod or Minor Annoyance's personality changes, which will be in v. 5.0); on the contrary, I usually lead culturally - but as said, I'm more of a builder.

    Now there's an idea! We need more multiplayer feedback. :mischief: (I've lost my MP playtest partner as he doesn't seem to be able to load the mod anymore...) :(

    As said, in my experience the AI focuses on ships before anything else. But at any rate I'll be adding recommendations on how to play MOO2Civ again with the v. 5.0 upload.

    Once, again, thanks for the feedback - we need more of that. ;)

    EDIT: @fulano: Slightly off topic here, but can you confirm that this: http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=8977209&postcount=155 didn't work?
     
  3. fulano

    fulano Chieftain

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    It's great! Deon's comments have inspired a ton of changes! More planned out changes that what I had thought about before.

    I do feel like the tech tree is kind of scattered and I plan to make some changes to try to make it so you can skip more techs but still get what you need.
     
  4. Deon

    Deon Lt. of Mordor

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    WOW it's weird and cool! I love Firefox. When I wrote this long post the power went down for a seconds and switched off my PC. Imagine my joy when I "restored tabs" in firefox and it happens that it saved the text I typed into the "Message" box with the tabs even in case of a power problem!!!

    No, and the main reason is because AI cannot handle "score" well in the beginning so they build weird nets of Vassals/Alliances which do not suit flavor at all (i.e. Mrrshan capitulating under Psilon at start; or Silicoids signing defensive pacts with other races).
    Also when you get things with time, it helps to feel the "development of xeno relations".

    They are still promotions and maximum they give is 20% str. (at least in the first part of tech tree). I'd rather grab some awesome building, civic or another model of a ship than gain +20% str which is negated by another level in "strength" promotion.

    I DO think that equipment through XP is an OK decision (not the best, but AI handles it well so I am happy with it), but a promotion for a medium-cost tech is not a good idea, I think there should be other benefits (i.e. something related to the "ship part", maybe some base installation or small bonus, it needs just some imagination :)).

    I like the tree as it is, but it needs some work IMO :). At least because MOO2 was VERY ship combat oriented, and all base building was mainly to faster support better ships, while in CIV4 buildings influence a lot of gameplay mechanics. So I think the "ship part tech tree" should be expanded to reflect it.

    The current problem is not the speed, but the amount of + "raw" buildings (where "raw" is either raw hammers or raw beakers) which should be allowed only 1 per system but are built in all planets instead. As a result, systems become overpowered too fast, and there's no need in those "android workers" (+20 hammers) if you can build some Robo mining plants on each planet. I think that even if you could build such improvements in MOO2 everywhere, there should be two options:
    1) Either they should be allowed to be built only 1 per system.
    2) Or they should get lower yields, or better get scaled with the amount, i.e. next will provide a smaller benefit. There're various ways to achieve it I believe.


    The main problem right now is that MOO2 ships were much more "expensive" in terms of Hammers provided/hammer cost ratio. In Civ4 you can use ANY planet (hmm, maybe it should be addressed with some mechanic too) and they ALL build your single ship so it goes out of the docks very fast.
    I don't think that increase in ship costs is a good idea because it would ruin early game, but rather limiting of unnatural fast hammer-providers would do the trick.

    The problem is that currently you can't, and Titans are close to Robo mining plant which means that if I go that way, I will spew out a Titan out of any crappy system in 3 turns. So if I have 4-5 systems (as I usually do) it will mean that I will get more than one 32 str unit per turn, which cannot be beaten by any other teching path. Stack of death is a deadly mechanic, stack of death of STR32!!! units is just... well.

    For the beginning, just make Epic game speed with normal game build speeds. It plays great.

    It's not "bugging", it just kills the feeling of the development.
    Also races should be different in government from the start, so I don't think that a single "despotism" would work. Also I don't see why Space Faring races do not have government from the start, they wouldn't be able to build space ships without proper organization.

    Thus I propose: give "government" based on those in original MOO2 as starting gov. civics and give them ability to shift from it (also to balance the uberhumans with their democracy under any gov. civic). Make those pretty early avaliable in the tech tree. Then make 2-3 more which are more "advanced" and put them somewhere in the end of tech tree.

    Good idea. I like "logical" tech trees which allow choice but still are not overpowered in some direction.

    I think so too, but it feels weird as a single "line" somewhere else, so if it would be integrated somewhere smoothly it would be nice.

    Also the main problem is that there're not enough ways to counter military line at all.

    At first, you should :).

    And I meant this: it has a very wide tech tree.
    A separate line for smelting/metalworking tech. They provide melee units.
    A separate line for trade/logistics tech. They provide mounted units.
    A separate line for woodworking/ranged combat tech. They provide archery units.
    A separate line for magic techs. They provide arcane units.
    A separate line of engineering techs. They provide siege units.
    A separate line of religious techs. They provide divine units.

    As you see, a HUGE choice. And you can pick any path, because you still has unit progression which are able to protect/defeat/counter other players who chose different paths. It looks and plays really great.

    Conclusion
    I would like you to consider:
    Limiting the extreme +:hammers: buildings to one per system or reducing their yields
    Making the tech tree more compact
    Adding possibility to counter military line somehow, i.e. like some defensive units/mechanics in another part of tech tree
    Giving different government civics to every civ from the start and making more advanced ones for the late game.
    Probably revisiting unit relative strength/per tier. A sudden jump to str 26/32 is not a good idea for me :).
     
  5. Arakhor

    Arakhor Dremora Courtier Moderator

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    Get the Lazarus plug-in, Deon. It even saves posts, YouTube comments and basically any form data into an online "bank" for up to two weeks just for you :D
     
  6. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    Although you give valuable comments, I would like to make a few remarks:

    I can't really confirm this from the first playtests of v. 5.0, but you'll be able to see for yourself soe time tomorrow.

    Promotions/Part Upgrades can now give you way more than +20% strength - that's without upgrading to the next type of a unit (Destroyer I-II, Battleship I-II, etc.).

    Generally true, and this will be picked up.

    I do feel I have to say that the average player won't play at Master of Orion II level (second highest level), and the mod should be playable for as large a fanbase as possible. Titans can be beaten for sure, though maybe the AI isn't up to the task... I usually go for Battleoids to secure my system defenses, and I've noticed the AI "knows" their value as well. In the end, however, all AI can be beaten, whether by Titan stacks of doom or otherwise.

    I'm not sure about this: races currently are different from the start, though maybe not (yet) as much as in MoO. But I agree it would be more interesting to divide the civics more along the tech tree.

    Actually there are now various military lines. I don't quite know how you'd win without some military development.
     
  7. fulano

    fulano Chieftain

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    Sweet! I never knew Firefox would save the posts.

    It is planned, I mentioned it a few posts that about mid game everything is produced in one turn. It does appear that each new building costs more though. Like the first building on one planet may cost 50 hammers, but the second costs 100 hammers, etc. I imagine that helps at least, but not with ship production.

    I totally agree, thank you for posting it! :goodjob: I wouldn't have considered taking out a tech line before because it's not like MoO but I think it would be better for the game.

    Another excellent idea that I plan to include. For one I want to add a couple techs that increase star defense for ships and troops, but also computers, armor, shields, and troop rifles do help with this. They give a strength bonus and a space defense bonus to make your ships tougher when defending.

    I do think the civics need redone, I'm not sure if they are from FF or variations of what they had, but this is something I won't get around to for a long time because I'm not familiar with the civic file yet and I want to focus on the tech tree and promotions first.

    Just an idea though, they did have unique governments in MoO2 to start with, then later those governments could be upgraded. Can you start a civ with a civic that they haven't researched yet? That way they start with their native government as their civic and when they get to a point it unlocks the other governments so you can adjust as needed. Further down the line better government civics can be unlocked liked the advanced government tech in MoO2Civ

    MoO2Civ does do that in a way, Physics gives you your strength bonuses (beam weapons), Power gives you your city attack bonuses (bombs), Computer & force field gives you defense bonuses(shields & computers). The units in this game are all basically the same but it's the promotions that make things unique.

    I also agree that relative unit strengths are not good. I'm not sure where they came from, but I think unit strength bonuses should be spread out more along the tech tree. Also, Civ4 uses about 7 hammers for 1 strength, I'm currently looking at MoO to see what it's ratios are and will post a revised system to improve unit strength/tier.


    I will post my ideas for rebalanced unit strengths in a little while, I'm working on it right now.
     
  8. fulano

    fulano Chieftain

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    Here is a basic road map for what I plan to change for minimod 2.0 after MoO2Civ 5.0 comes out (I do want to play it a bit first).

    Road Map
    -Make minor bugfixes I have found
    -Add several buildings and techs that are missing and add the new victories.
    -Reorganize the tech positions and compact it (3 choices max, possibly one less tech line)
    -Spread out the civic and diplomacy options more.
    -Re-balance the units costs and strengths and their position in the tech tree.
    -Release 2.0b for playtesting and continue to make other improvements.

    Notes on tech tree re-balance
    Each object you obtain in the tech tree should help you in some way that helps you get towards one of the victories. I have included a few new ones, They're described below.

    -Time Victory = General (easy for new players who don't specialize)
    -Conquest/Domination = Military Strength, Production
    -Cultural Victory = Culture, Production
    -Orion Victory* (Space Race) = Production, Science
    -Diplomacy Victory= General (just be well liked!)
    -Gold Victory* = Gold, Production
    -Value Victory* = Science, Produciton
    -Antarian Victory* = Science, Military Strength
    Spoiler :
    * = New Victory
    Orion Victory: Build enough pieces of the Orion gate to allow you to find and open a portal to the Orion's new homeworld, where they return and bring peace to the galaxy.
    Gold victory: Obtain a huge amount of gold that would allow you to cripple other economies, buy off leaders, hire mercenaries, and eventually control the galaxy.
    Value Victory: This one is more experimental, I'm not sure if I want to add it yet, but the plan is to spread a value you founded to about 75% of the galaxy. This will require me to add ways to remove values from planets and block values from spreading to your empire.
    Antarian Victory: I've just heard rumors of others working on this but I imagine it being building several antarian portal pieces which allow you to send a fleet to the antarian homeworld in a seculded part of the map where you must defeat them. This makes you win because the technology you gain from the Antarians will make you unstoppable.

    Each tech line will contain techs that have you choose between things that will help you towards these goals. Like automated factory = production, missile base = protection (for cultural types, etc). I will move things around to try to improve this because currently the choices in the tech tree seem rather similar.

    Notes on the unit rebalance
    Civ4 appears to use a ratio of about 7 hammers for each strength a unit has. This is a bit more complex in MoO2 because units have strength and they have ship component space, but the ships start at 6 hamemrs per HP and end up at 32 hammers per HP. Also they start with 1 hammer per component space space and end up at 4 hammers per component space. I think that is part of the reason production increases in the game, so building production speeds up but ship production is limited.

    Should ship cost increase in MoO2Civ like it does in MoO2? Or should it stay the same like in Civ4?

    I think the cost should go up slightly because when CyberChrist finishes his project bigger ships will be able to hold more promotions when built, adding strength that isn't included in the base ship cost.

    I plan to start the player out with Frigates (scouts), Destroyers, and Transports only. Then they will get cruiser class ships in not too long, then battleships, etc. That will make progression more continuous. Units in Civ4 seem to increase about 25% strength each new unit (2, 6, 8, 14, 20 for melee units, 4.5, 7.5, 9, 12, 18 for city defensive units). I would like to try to follow that so each new techs will increase in effectiveness by about 25%.

    Each new hull type in MoO2 is about 100% stronger but I wanted to reduce that to a more Civ4 style. I plan new hulls to gain about 50% more strength, starting at 4 for frigates and ending with 30 for doomstars. I still plan to include II & III hulls that will just give a smaller strength bonus.

    I will also change the combat types to match each ship class instead of recon, light, capital, and carrier classes.

    Star capturing problem
    In MoO2 you capture stars with transports after you destroy the defending fleet and buildings. I like the system of only transports capturing stars and changing <bNoCapture> to 1 for the rest of the units but I'm not sure if the AI will do very well with it. I still plan to test that.

    How do you think we could fix this?

    My latest thoughts were to only be able to capture stars with transports, battleships, titans, and doomstars and make the ground troops match the strength of similar ships (like marines match battleships, armor match titans, and battloids match doomstars). Transports I, II, and III will match marines, armor, and battloids but do flanking damage so with a few transports you can wear down the defending troops then finish them off with your ships.
     
  9. Deon

    Deon Lt. of Mordor

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    I will read the other text later because I go to bed now, but:
    I don't think that limiting it to a unittype is good for AI, but an idea to make planet defence to match ship strength is nice. This way "capturing" would mean "landing troops which are on ship", and "city attack bonus" could be moved to a "experienced marines" promotion for ships.


    Also I am not sure about Doomstars attacking at all. I think it would be a nice test to make them defensive only but give them "death ray" attack (like station's) which can kill. This way it would be even more deadly. Also the destroying of a planet through a special missile from FF could be turned into an action on Doomstar when it is based over an unowned system.

    Yes you can, and that's what I mean. Also it would follow the MOO2 canon.
     
  10. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    I'm not sure. Babylon 5 mod also has Transport to move ground forces, but from what I've seen the AI doesn't really use this option. (And for my own experience the AI in MOO2Civ doesn't either: whenever I loose a system and want to recapture it, there are no ground forces to defeat.) If this weren't so, it'd be a lot easier to transform Invasion Ships to Transports permanently. So indeed, any idea should be thoroughly tested before implementation.

    As concerns relative ship strengths: IMO there should be a clear break between Destroyers/Battleships and Titans/Doomstars (and possibly between Titans-Doomstars as well; from what I remember it was usual for a Doomstar to complete in not under 9-10 turns in MoO II and in most systems it would take much longer). Doomstars should be a class of their own and not be counterable by planetary defense forces (preferably only by other Doomstars).

    What I have noticed is a tendency for the AI to use Battleships as planetary defense, which is another reason to decrease Battleship strenght relative to Destroyers.
     
  11. Deon

    Deon Lt. of Mordor

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    Okay, while I was looking through SDK to find out how to make a stealth-enabling promotion I saw a lot of code regarding to unitAi (probably because I looked into wrong files most of the time :D). So theoretically you COULD adjust AI to build transport ships and send them with main fleet to capture planets. Then you would remove this limitation from telepaths for known reasons.
    But only when you code it in :p.

    My level is not enough to do it yet, so I'd suggest we skip it until we find out "how-to". But relative strengths is a good idea and I'd suggest to use it.
     
  12. fulano

    fulano Chieftain

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    I think the AI will do pretty well with just the majority of the ships able to capture stars.
    I increased the titan by 3 and the doomstar by 6 from my original plan, that may not seem like too much but adding in promotions the difference will get bigger. I will also try to make sure the doom star takes about 10 turns to build and balance everything off of that. I think that definitly means I need to increase hammers/strength for each ship level.

    I actually told the AI to defend it's planets with battleships because their strength is much greater than battloids (battleoids are 24 defending a star) an they are relatively cheap compared to the other ships.


    Some promotions will require the ship to have the bonus to be able to get it (like intercept). I was also thinking of giving a bigger intercept bonus to smaller ships to help keep them useful. Something like this:
    Doomstars: 5%
    Titans: 5%
    Battleships: 10%
    Cruisers: 20%
    Destroyer: 50%
    Frigate: 50%

    Also I think scouts will need to keep their detect invisibility and increased sight range ability because you can't add that through a promotion. Or should I give it to stealth ships and spies?
     
  13. Deon

    Deon Lt. of Mordor

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    Actually you can. I can show my DLL code if you want, or you may look into Star Trek's DLL. TC01 even made it a toggeable button through python, so just 5 min ago I was switching invisibility on and off on my wraith, and upgraded my templar vessel with detectors to see observers.
     
  14. fulano

    fulano Chieftain

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    That would be cool to have, we'd just need to make sure Jeelen includes the new coding. I think the toggling would be great to make it so you can defend with a stealth ship.

    Also with the code to include stealth in a promotion you could incorperate a multi level stealth system, like ships with the stealth field detectable by most ships, only ships with sensor promotions can detect the cloaking device, and only upgraded sensors can detect the phase cloak.
     
  15. Deon

    Deon Lt. of Mordor

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    Actually I will include the "chance" to detect a ship too, there's such modmod in the modmod forums.
     
  16. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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  17. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    @Deon: Sounds cool! :)

    But if you lower the BS base strength that will no longer apply; in addition sometimes Destroyers act as primary defenders - which is good as space ships should defend before planetary defenders.

    No, you shouldn't; they have different functions. Actually it would be nice to give Scouts a (limited) attack capability, as in MoO (perhaps not Scouts, but definitely Scouts II and up). Also, I thought Intercept was a typical squadron promotion, but I guess that's not so?
     
  18. CyberChrist

    CyberChrist You caught my attention

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    I already have a fully functioning multilevel stealth vs detection promotions system running in my project. Of course, the completion of my project could be 1-2 months away.
     
  19. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    We'll be patient. ;)

    But perhaps you could elaborate a bit on it so as not to have more or less the same thing done twice?
     
  20. Deon

    Deon Lt. of Mordor

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    You can just make different types of stealth :).

    Also, you can list different types of invisibility seeing using comma.
     

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