On the one hand, that's right, on the other hand, it's a challenge for your tactical skills. Using a huge amount of units to destroy the enemy is easy, but to do this with a limited amount is a challenge. I think it's worth to test it and we should also see what other players think about it as soon as it's implemented. It's very easy to revert that in master or making a mod.
Dong get me wrong I understand the premise behind this one, but the reality is even though I may well have the capacity to field 100 units I never actually use that many at least not all at once, and there is one very good reason why pathing.
I have found that trying to command more than about 20 units at any one time is simply impractical, because they end up getting in each others way due to pathing issues, what I do, do quite frequently however is have different squads attack different objectives.
So for example on Alpha 2 I'll have 1 squad go and deal with the base on the ridge above my base, mean while I'll have a second squad go and deal with the base where you get the generator artefact, and I'll have a third squad stay on guard at the entrance of my base to stop the computer attacking my base, but if I only get to build 40 units then that leaves my base open and undefended since both squads are busy with there individual objectives, and I cant build any units to defend my base and while I could build turrets that’s just more time and resources that I have to spend that I don’t have.
And that right there is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the problems that this sort of a change would create, so you can see just from that very simple example how such a change would cripple your tactical flexibility.
You make a valid point about players using brute force tactics, but is stopping that really worth all the unnecessary hassle, that this would create ?? to which I'm forced to the answer no, because such a change would have a seriously negative impact on playability and would make the game so frustrating and tedious that it would simply not be worth playing which kinds of defeats the whole purpose of the exercise, like i said before if you want to make the harder difficulties more challenging then fix the retarded AI, fix the pathing issues, rework the resource system and then remove the unit cap and timer.
Doing all these things is very easy if you have unlimited time. It's more challenging if you have to do all these things in a limited time. One other problem I see without a timer is the exploit of energy. We implemented timers into Alpha 01 and 03 to avoid that the play can get unlimited energy by running the game overnight. And without a timer, you would be able to gain unlimited energy or, with higher difficulties, the allowed maximum of energy in every away mission. You would just have to stay in your home base until you reached the energy limit. And start the transporter only after you reached that.
True enough, to remove the timer would require reworking the resource system, so that you no longer have limitless resources.
Having said that there is one way around this, a Dawn of War style resources system, which is what is used in a skirmish game aka you land and are given a starting budget there will typically be a couple of resources point right there at the landing zone/base, and then there will be several more scattered across the map, either held by no one or held by the who ever owns that map and your objective is to blow up computers oil wells to stop them getting resources and then build your own in there place.
Obviously the computer would try to take the resource points back, so they would need to be defended but because resources don’t carry over from map to map it solves the unlimited resources problem and means that you can get rid of the timer, and let people play the level at there own pace, and with an improved AI you could get rid of the unit cap as well again giving the player the freedom to play the level which ever way they like, and ultimately this would be the better way to go in the long run.
I mean imagine if you could replace the campaign AI with something like nullbot well in that case that would make the campaign much tougher due to the fact nullbot is much smarter than the campaign AI, and to make things more interesting you could adjust how cunning the AI is based on the difficulty. Now I'll admit that is not a quick or easy thing to do but it is something worth thinking about.
At the moment Berserk Cyborg is trying to bring back the optimum/short/long range feature. With that, we will have different accuracies for short and long distances. That means we would have to restart the rebalancing after he succeeded to see if this have a remarkable influence on the balance. That's the reason why I didn't move forward with the balance testing (and because of not having much time for testing at the moment). So in my eyes, your thoughts about the weapon damage should wait until we come again to the point where these issues occur.
I see, my though on this was to adjust the base accuracy for all weapon to be what it would be if the unit was set to attack at optimum range, because right now the accuracy of all weapons is set to what it would be if the unit was set to attack at long range which makes no sense since optimum range was the default value, but if Berserk Cyborg is going to bring that back a guess we could hold off.
The one problem i have with this though is that currently the latest builds wont run for me, due to the fact that XP support still hasn't been sorted out, so even if this was this is done and even if the old hold guard and pursue stances are restored like they where before, I'll never actually see thoughts changes since i cant run the latest builds.