The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

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whippersnapper
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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by whippersnapper » 11 Dec 2008, 18:32

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Modding the Campaign can go down so many implementation roads (different techniques) including the ultimate - a Total Conversion..

A couple examples - the most direct approach is to modify and add scripts to Pumpkin's right in the Cam structure itself...

Another approach is to extract the Campaign Map to make it an MP Map-Mod Combo with a special a.i. that runs simultaneously with whatever
Ski a.i. you want as long it was compatible resource wise. "Citadel Elite" (4-player map) would be the model for this technique. You would put your "Cam Scripts" in Player 5, you would set yourself as Player0 and Players 1-3 would be run by the chosen Ski A.I.

Choosing the MP AI will have a huge impact on the outcome. I would NOT use "BP v.2.92" because you would always lose. I would go with "Aivolution's" early iteration with unit transport drops... tough as nails but could be defeated..and just bloody fun..("H2O" Ski A.I. would be another fine choice..)

However, I can't see an easy way to "just drop an MP a.i". into a Campaign. but then again since i stopped actively working on WZ i am starting to lose my facility with how to do unusual stuff in practical terms...

Come to think of it- Speedy's "AI Boost" Mod might also be instructive. Lav got a copy to me today from his archive cause i couldn't find mine - I
wanted to go through Speedy's work on another matter he solved. I'll see if his techniques have application here too over the weekend. (In addition to being fortunate in having Lav's WZ Doc Project he is also been custodian of some fine WZ work done since '99 we might have otherwise lost without his efforts...)

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by whippersnapper » 12 Dec 2008, 02:31

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Come to think of it- Speedy's "AI Boost" Mod might also be instructive.
Oh my, was that ever an understatement. A resounding yes to Speedy's techniques applying.
Well worth studying his source. I marvel at what he did - fun as hell - but I'm also humbled by
his skills, imagination and fortitude in bringing a work of this scope to completion. An amazing
accomplishment.

I can't even begin to summarize in a post his techniques - you have to go through his source yourself
to get a real appreciation.

as i said elsewhere:
btw - the name "AI Boost" just does not even begin to describe the depth, breath & intricacy of this mod. it is a masterwork and worth studying-analyzing.
well folks i'm outta dodge to alternate between work, holiday family stuff, deving an RTS and playing "Fallout 3" on my newly built rig - Core 2 Quad on an NVIDIA® 750i SLI chipset-based mobo for my dual XFX GeForce 9800 GTX 512mb PCI Express 2.0 cards. :ninja: whatever your doing WZ, have fun and a great holiday too.... l8rs :cool:

.........
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"I need no warrant for being, and no word of sanction upon my being. I am the warrant and the sanction." Anthem

"Art is the selective recreation of reality according to the artist's metaphysical value judgments." A. Rand
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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by Skrim » 12 Dec 2008, 11:39

Chojun wrote:IMO it would be unplayable. All this talk leads me to believe that people have never played Cam3 on normal or hard.

Seriously, go try it on hard. It sucks.
I've beaten it several times on Normal. AFAIK, "Hard" mode is just added fake difficulty by giving all enemy stuff 40% more HP.

Basically, I think adding an MP AI(don't ask me about implementation or scripting, please) would allow NEXUS to use their Factories to actually build stuff, and would make them a little bit more attack-aggressive.

Gamma 1, I agree, would be nearly impossible. They have lots of oil, and could build Truck Retribution Hover units and construct structures, and build more cyborgs and combat hovercraft with their existing infrastructure and give the newly-arrived player a very tough time.
But in Gamma 2, NEXUS has no oil, so they can only work with the finite amount of stuff they start with even if they do get a new AI.
In Gamma 3, they get 1 puny Oil Derrick after assimilating Team Gamma's base, and otherwise have finite resources as they seem to bring in only 1 Transport load, and their VTOL airstrikes die down after a while.
Gamma 4 is like Gamma 2 - no oil. AFAIK, this mission is just a bunch of NEXUS and Team Alpha units fighting a random skirmish at an arbitrary, unimportant location, and all you have to do is go in, find Team Alpha and get out with minimum casualties.
Gamma 5 doesn't involve any NEXUS base, and by it's very nature, must be scripted. So it stays the same.
Gamma 6 has NEXUS with 2 Oil Derricks, but the player can still kill their Factories with an air-strike(taking some losses, of course) and cut them off before they can get any trucks or new combat units built. Gamma 7 is the same story. Once their rebuilding and replenishing ability is gone, the mission reverts to the same difficulty state as it's in right now.
Gamma 8, like Gamma 5, remains the same.
Gamma 9 would become a hell lot tougher, but it's supposed to be the very last mission, and the player has no time limit and unlimited reinforcements, so it's OK.

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by whippersnapper » 16 Dec 2008, 02:32

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Basically, I think adding an MP AI (don't ask me about implementation or scripting, please) would allow NEXUS to use their Factories to actually build stuff, and would make them a little bit more attack-aggressive.
This can be done via scripting.. (you can almost cut 'n paste from earlier cam level scripts). Unless you want to make the Cam more "dynamic" (like if you wanted to make anti walk-through "branching" missions by using A.I. personalities alongside triggers) you really don't need an MP A.I....

The Cam scripts make for interesting reading:

http://svn.gna.org/svn/warzone/trunk/da ... ript/text/

http://svn.gna.org/svn/warzone/trunk/da ... ript/data/

As does this article: The Psychology Behind Games


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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by Skrim » 16 Dec 2008, 08:23

Cool. I think I'll make a NEXUS-Uses-Factories Mod myself, as well as a No Upgrades Mod for Skirmish mode, but it'll take a while. I've done a bit of TXT editing, but so far, I haven't done any SLO/VLO scripting. The No Upgrades Mod can be done through TXTs, so it should be relatively simple, but tedious since it involves that damned research.txt file.

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by whippersnapper » 18 Dec 2008, 17:32

Skrim wrote:Cool. I think I'll make a NEXUS-Uses-Factories Mod myself
,

You'll have to decide what will make-up your unit templates... same mix as the script-triggered units or different.
as well as a No Upgrades Mod for Skirmish mode, but it'll take a while. I've done a bit of TXT editing, but so far, I haven't done any SLO/VLO scripting. The No Upgrades Mod can be done through TXTs, so it should be relatively simple, but tedious since it involves that damned research.txt file.
Your "No Upgrades" Mod proposition is elegant and will be very popular I believe.

WZaiEditor and WZMissionEditor could be very helpful in learning slo/vlo scripting.... SKI and CAM (they are not exactly the same)....

Here are a couple tutorials:

http://docs.wz2100.net/artificial%20int ... stuff.html This is illustrated with gui screens

http://docs.wz2100.net/utilities/wck.html This has an expansion on explaining script details that is very good.

I'm not sure if the 2 WZ AI Editors are still available in public downloads but I can certainly send em to you if your interested.
They definitely work and make learning a lot more fun...

Regards....

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"I need no warrant for being, and no word of sanction upon my being. I am the warrant and the sanction." Anthem

"Art is the selective recreation of reality according to the artist's metaphysical value judgments." A. Rand
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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by kage » 18 Dec 2008, 18:24

In SVN, have we switched over to using SQLite, for any data import, or are we still using the plaintext files?

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by elio » 18 Dec 2008, 19:23

still using plaintext

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by EvilGuru » 18 Dec 2008, 20:33

Campaign uses SQLite. MP still uses plain-text.

Regards, Freddie.

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by whippersnapper » 19 Dec 2008, 06:57

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"Art is the selective recreation of reality according to the artist's metaphysical value judgments." A. Rand
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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by themousemaster » 19 Dec 2008, 23:52

whippersnapper wrote:.

So let me step-up to the plate & summarize the design strats of compelling replay value as I have come to understand my own subjectivity and creation goals. This set is by no means offered as gospel or exhaustive. No doubt there are other design sets that can achieve the goal of enhancing replay value that I can't even conceive. But this is the ground staked as the goals-benchmarks for a particular RTS in development and we'll see if it pans out in the end.

* 1.) Distinct playable factions.

* 2.) Fine-tuned command and control of combat groups on the battlefield such that multiple vector deployments with velocity are feasible. Being on the short end of the stick in sheer numbers during asymmetric conflicts is NOT an assurance of defeat. The foregoing is predicated on placing a premium on intel gathering tech and the facility to translate into intelligent maneuver with velocity.

* 3.) Boons to motivate unit preservation through ranking experience

* 4.) Passive and Special abilities.... with stacking.

* 5.) Minimizing economy, research and leveling-up micro-management

* 6.) Be able to absorb game play complexity incrementally and intuitively - the learning process cannot create confusion, frustration or feel like hard work. Complexity is a slippery slope and alone does not assure depth of game play that is both fun and challenging - sometimes the complexity can actually be entirely gratuitous..

* 7.) In-game player avatar investment scheme via dual game play modalities in MP... aka, the status of General in God-mode & FP POV.

* 8.) Squash all bugs as they manifest by stress testing in maximum # of gamers in MP mode. Play-testing at 50% load just doesn't cut it and there can never be sufficient MP play-testing for countless reasons amongst which balance stands out as the most obvious.

* 9.) Be super mod-friendly...

...
Boy am late to this topic...

Let me say this though, just to see what the resident English Expert has to say on it :P.

In order for games to become less like Micromanagement and more strategically based, you have to, by definition, be able to take a step back from the battlefield, and let the "units" do their thing.

However, point #4 (that I've boldfaced) is essentially going to require even MORE micro-management than the game currently has. And point #5 makes it sound like Micro Management is a good thing, as long as it's only part of the military aspect of it, but that violates grand-strategy as well because, as it was put so eloquently elsewhere in this thread, "like you are a Sergeant barking out orders".

Personal opinion: having played Red Alert 3 for a while now (a game which prides itself on having EVERY SINGLE UNIT, and some structures, have a special ability), this is just no fun at all. Some abilities (like having an Empire unit switching from AA to AG mode) is fine, but others (like the cryocopter's shrink ray) that you have to continuously select each copter, hit the ability, and then select a specific unit, turns the game into a "who can make more clicks per second" race that games like StarCraft games practically rely upon.



That said, I would ask if the Topic Creator (or anyone else, for that matter) has played what I consider 3 of the best RTS-RTT hybrids out there, to see if it falls somewhere in line with the ideals being posted:

Lords of the Realm 2 (Turn-based County Management, Real-time Battles)
Lords of Magic (Turn-based Country Management, Real-time Battles)
Ogre Battle (Real-time Territory management, Turn-based Battles)

The reason for the above list is it manages to allows players time for in-depth strategy without having to worry so much about precise clicking every second. Granted, OB is single-player only, and the 2 Lords of Games end up being terrible for Multiplayer if your opponent(s) decide to stall their turn, but... really, should one balance a game based on what @$$-hats are going to make their playstyle?

The center one, Lords of Magic, Incorporates all of your list (sans #9) to a degree, and that was a decade ago (A shame Sierra only had 2 good titles since then :( ). If you can try it, do so, and if you have, what are your thoughts?

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by whippersnapper » 20 Dec 2008, 18:09

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Boy am late to this topic...

Let me say this though, just to see what the resident English Expert has to say on it :P.

In order for games to become less like Micromanagement and more strategically based, you have to, by definition, be able to take a step back from the battlefield, and let the "units" do their thing.
I do love the English language but no matter how much I put into its mastery I shall always see myself a student with much more to learn. Though confident I hold arrogance unseemly and even worthless.

---------------------->.

- "and let the "units" do their thing."

This is key in what I'm working on right now. In WZ terms let's call it Command A.I.

A few years back I was introduced to the work Artificial War:

http://www.worldscibooks.com/compsci/5531.html

And the software that resulted from that effort (which is free) - ISAAC/EINSTein:

- "Irreducible Semi-Autonomous Adaptive Combat"

- "Enhanced ISSAC Neural Simulation Toolkit"

- Together comprising an artifical life "Laboratory" for exploring Self-Organized
emergent behavior in Land Combat.

http://www.cna.org/isaac/

The key concept being combat behavior a.i.

I've also made use of StarLogo NG in modeling behavior dealing with conflict and survivability..

Most recently I've been writing "smarter" unit a.i. in Symbionic

- http://www.simbionic.com/games.htm (there is a free community edition that gives you a good feel...)

So.. in WZ terms, i'm focused on "smarter" Commander A.I. utilizing behavior SW tech to not have to babysit suicidal and "stupid" unit behavior getting to and within the theater of battle ops..

But that's only part of the mechanic. Other components inc: No fog-of-war, UAV's, (within a C41 commitment to intel) and a Command UI that facilitates simultaneous, coordinated,, multi-vectored, multiple combat group (mixed arms) deployment-maneuver....

And - HOW you do the game's pathfinding is also crucial in this area. ... especially if your doing a hybrid RTS were there is a clearly defined strategic mode wherein the player acts as a general with subordinate commander led combat groups but can also enter a tactical world mode dynamically (NOT via a TB mechanic)..

However, point #4 (that I've boldfaced) is essentially going to require even MORE micro-management than the game currently has. And point #5 makes it sound like Micro Management is a good thing, as long as it's only part of the military aspect of it, but that violates grand-strategy as well because, as it was put so eloquently elsewhere in this thread, "like you are a Sergeant barking out orders".
Yes, I share that point of view. Any technique can be over done or be entirely inappropriate to the game style or a paticular game play [/b]phase[/b] within the whole.

Of late there's been much ado about utilizing Dynamic Difficulty Adjustment technique in all games.

The central argument being:
"Afterall, it should be the designer's job is to insure the proper play experience, not the player's. The idea behind auto-dynamic difficulty (ADD) is to keep the player in the sweet spot, where the game remains challenging, but never impossible. A perfect game experience is one that constantly tests the player's skill, without being so hard they want to give up. Completing such a game gives a player an elated feeling of accomplishment, because they know they passed a tough test of their ability."
But my overall thinking about this (ADDA) and other techniques is:
The truth, I think, is that dynamic difficulty adjustment is a useful technique, for some game styles, and at some times. It's an idea that should be part of any game designer's bag of tricks. But it isn't for all games, or even most; and it must be implemented with care and intelligence.
In WZ an example of an overdone design technique would be, IMO, incremental research.

-------------------->
Personal opinion: having played Red Alert 3 for a while now (a game which prides itself on having EVERY SINGLE UNIT, and some structures, have a special ability), this is just no fun at all. Some abilities (like having an Empire unit switching from AA to AG mode) is fine, but others (like the cryocopter's shrink ray) that you have to continuously select each copter, hit the ability, and then select a specific unit, turns the game into a "who can make more clicks per second" race that games like StarCraft games practically rely upon.
I think any good technique can be overdone so that its pluses become detriments. Which becomes a crucial difference of degree rather than one of kind or type.

This is how I see what was done in RA3 with "special abilities".

We usually talk about "balance" in terms of units, weaps, etc... but from the vantage of a games design there are literally 100s of decisions you have to make when implementing the various techniques used to make for compelling fun and that whole process invokes a meta balance. In short some "special abilites" can be a good thing but to make it a dominant feature like RA3 turns it into something more tiresome than fun.

Then there are other considerations that come under target audience - the desires of die hard RTS fans or to broaden the reach to appeal to "casual" gamers or folks who like an FP element or RP element or all the above...

Some in the business have expressed the opinion that just listening to hard core RTS gamer wishes has had an overall detrimental effect on the genres evolution and broad-based appeal. Of course this is not much of a concern when it comes to FOSS games..


That said, I would ask if the Topic Creator (or anyone else, for that matter) has played what I consider 3 of the best RTS-RTT hybrids out there, to see if it falls somewhere in line with the ideals being posted:

Lords of the Realm 2 (Turn-based County Management, Real-time Battles)
Lords of Magic (Turn-based Country Management, Real-time Battles)
Ogre Battle (Real-time Territory management, Turn-based Battles)

The reason for the above list is it manages to allows players time for in-depth strategy without having to worry so much about precise clicking every second. Granted, OB is single-player only, and the 2 Lords of Games end up being terrible for Multiplayer if your opponent(s) decide to stall their turn, but... really, should one balance a game based on what @$$-hats are going to make their playstyle?

The center one, Lords of Magic, Incorporates all of your list (sans #9) to a degree, and that was a decade ago (A shame Sierra only had 2 good titles since then :( ). If you can try it, do so, and if you have, what are your thoughts?
I have not played these games in a long spell but will look into re-experiencing them - the better to understand how they work in light of what I'm doing these days..

One very old game (DOS) that has influenced my design sensibility even to this day is "Syndicate" (anticipated WZ's unit design by years and implemented better - same with research) An other would be Sierra's old "Outpost 2"

I have played the "Combat Mission" games by Battlefront over the last 10 years which make use of a combination RT and TB mechanic which is pretty cool... I've also been influenced by "Brothers In Arms" tight melding of game play mechanics and fine interactive story.

The RTS I'm working on is a hybrid too..... but it makes use of certain sw tech to offer a very different tactical experience from the strategic mode experience... it is optional, dynamic and seamless. Map-making is much more challenging than making a single mode experience but it's worth it.

As far as - "it manages to allows players time for in-depth strategy without having to worry so much about precise clicking every second" - this has been a critical goal and we've come up with a set of techniques that keep the game in RT and do not resort to TB. I've mentioned one at the outset which is a combo of a.i. and UI. - think in terms of "Macros" and "Queues"...

- Regards

..
Last edited by whippersnapper on 21 Dec 2008, 00:01, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by themousemaster » 20 Dec 2008, 19:58

I've played Syndicate. Fixed-time between missions, real-time in missions. The setup was nice, but having only played the SNES version of it, I can say the inability to "zoom out" your view, or effectively separate your team beyond the edges of the screen, made a couple of the stages completely terrible. Maybe the PC version was different.



If you can get a hold of Lords of Magic, I think that would be the best example to discuss. Grand strategy, RTT battles, Diplomacy as a valid option (with the exception the Death faction anyway), Few bugs (mostly affecting multiplayer connections), 8-faction balance that, for 1998 at least, was pretty darn impressive... I think it might be a good game to try out to add to your points, due to how much it resembles many of them. It also happens to do well in comparison to the "7 deadly sins" article you posted, skitring the edge of #2 and 3, and doing well with the other 5.






Also, on a side note (and please don't take this personally):

A lot of posters on this board don't have english as a first language; saying that, I do, and have gotten a BS from UDel... and even I find myself having to take some extra time to fully comprehend some of the sentences you are posing.

An example is:
But that's only part of the mechanic. Other components inc: No fog-of-war, UAV's, (within a C41 commitment to intel) and a Command UI that facilitates simultaneous, multi-vectored, multiple combat group deployment-maneuver....
It took me a bit (and I'm still not sure what the "C41 to intel" part meant), but I understood that you meant that the AI ignores (or the game does away with) fog-of-war, uses/using an "eye in the sky" type view to decide for itself how many, and what, directions to act from, all at the same time.



I (and most of this board, in stark contrast to someplace like GameFAQS or WoW) are definitely into an intelligent, theroy-based discussion on these types of things, but I think the choices of verbiage you are using may be throwing many of those who would post off the mark.

I have reviewed all the posts in this thread so far, and although there are a dozen or so distinct posters, most of the responses are only in regards to a single line of post (mostly about philosophy), or tangential posts which, while interesting, aren't actually part of the "changing the game dynamic" topic (Regardless of how respectable of an institution SETI is, I don't think it really applies to the implementation of Warzone2100 :P ). Not that said posts are bad in and of themselves, but when >75% of the posts in a thread aren't discussing the actual original topic, then usually the topic is done (or else needs to be renamed by the TC :P )

Perhaps using more common parlance would invite more discussion from more (and differently minded) people?

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Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by whippersnapper » 21 Dec 2008, 04:08

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I've played Syndicate. Fixed-time between missions, real-time in missions. The setup was nice, but having only played the SNES version of it, I can say the inability to "zoom out" your view, or effectively separate your team beyond the edges of the screen, made a couple of the stages completely terrible. Maybe the PC version was different.
I only played the PC version and I can't remember the camera scheme being a problem.

Couple things - "Syndicate" anticipated WZ's unit design by years and implemented it better, to my taste anyway - same with research. In particular, the Cyborg Design UI and Research UI. The designer, Peter Molineux, has said that out of all his old games, "Syndicate" is the only one he'd like to remake with today's technology.
If you can get a hold of Lords of Magic, I think that would be the best example to discuss. Grand strategy, RTT battles, Diplomacy as a valid option (with the exception the Death faction anyway), Few bugs (mostly affecting multiplayer connections), 8-faction balance that, for 1998 at least, was pretty darn impressive... I think it might be a good game to try out to add to your points, due to how much it resembles many of them. It also happens to do well in comparison to the "7 deadly sins" article you posted, skitring the edge of #2 and 3, and doing well with the other 5.
I will get a hold of it and play with it. Thank you for the recommendation and analysis. I live and breathe RTS design and appreciating
the work, the achievements, of others is inseparable from that passion.

- As an interesting aside - The defacto benchmark RTS after Feb. 2009, I believe will be Enigma's War Leaders: Clash of Nations HERE and the official game site: http://www.war-leaders.com/

- Using the Enigma Engine another RTS to look out for in '09 is WorldShift by Black Sea Studios (recently acquired by Crytek... yes THAT Crytek). There is a MP Demo out there you can check-out and the developers site for info and screen caps. HERE Both these RTSs introduce fresh design and game play to the genre. Could be a bumper-crop year coming for us RTS fans.

- In the same month, Feb. '09, Halo Wars - RTS will alas be released - it will fail and disappoint most RTS fans (at least based on the Beta)... greatest flaw - repetitive game play that becomes predictable and tiresome VERY fast. Sad after so many man-hours, years and money invested. I think it's too late to over-haul and it's just gonna be thrown-out to scoop up as much money as possible before word gets around of its design "sins"...
Also, on a side note (and please don't take this personally):

A lot of posters on this board don't have english as a first language; saying that, I do, and have gotten a BS from UDel... and even I find myself having to take some extra time to fully comprehend some of the sentences you are posing.

An example is:

QUOTE: " But that's only part of the mechanic. Other components inc: No fog-of-war, UAV's, (within a C41 commitment to intel) and a Command UI that facilitates simultaneous, multi-vectored, multiple combat group deployment-maneuver...."

It took me a bit (and I'm still not sure what the "C41 to intel" part meant), but I understood that you meant that the AI ignores (or the game does away with) fog-of-war, uses/using an "eye in the sky" type view to decide for itself how many, and what, directions to act from, all at the same time.
Oh I wouldn't take offense. Matter of fact I was mercilessly teased about my earlier posting style being too long and too detailed. It was all in good spirits and the ribbing was enjoyable and I did evolve different styles of posting.

My current style tends to use shorthand, compression and acronyms - maybe too far down that continuum of trying to keep my posting as brief as possible.

I figure too that if I screw-up in any way - like being obscure - folks will take me to task or ask me to clarify or elaborate.

I know no matter how I write I won't satisfy everyone. Plus, I think this topic wouldn't appeal to but a small minority. I could very well be wrong in that assumption.

Let me be brash and paraphrase Abe Lincoln: "You can please all of the people some of the time, some of the people all the time, but never all the people, all of the time."

- On "C41" (aka, "Dominant Battlespace Knowledge").I should have provided a link like so:

http://www.ndu.edu/inss/Books/Books%20- ... /dbk1.html

The two-fold goal of designing game play mechanics along these lines is inteliigent control of your army on the battlefield and to allow opportunities for asymmetric conflicts which in Chess would be playing the Queens Gambit and winning.

I (and most of this board, in stark contrast to someplace like GameFAQS or WoW) are definitely into an intelligent, theroy-based discussion on these types of things, but I think the choices of verbiage you are using may be throwing many of those who would post off the mark.
You could be right. I can make adjustments.

I have reviewed all the posts in this thread so far, and although there are a dozen or so distinct posters, most of the responses are only in regards to a single line of post (mostly about philosophy), or tangential posts which, while interesting, aren't actually part of the "changing the game dynamic" topic (Regardless of how respectable of an institution SETI is, I don't think it really applies to the implementation of Warzone2100 :P ). Not that said posts are bad in and of themselves, but when >75% of the posts in a thread aren't discussing the actual original topic, then usually the topic is done (or else needs to be renamed by the TC :P )
I've never been strict about "On Topic" or "Off Topic" remarks in my threads or as a webmaster-forum administrator-moderator, ('cept for flames), which probably annoys more than a few.. Always been that way. This has never been a problem for me even when I moderated BBs with upwards of 20-30 k in membership and remained as active as any of the members posting (which also goes contrary to the conventional wisdom of moderation styles - I am contrarian by nature). Had great fun on those bbs as we all learned new stuff - folks from all over the planet too wherein English was thier second or third language.

- On the SETI - Alien front: I found that tangent interesting because I spent a lot of energy coming up with an original & compelling take (one that hasn't been done to death in other games or SF cinematic or book tropes) for back story and as a playable faction. In that sense of not recycling cliches, it was relevant for me in this discussion.

My disposition on "Off Topic" is based on the "Serious Creativity" and "Lateral Thinking" of Edward de Bono, one of my mentors. As a consequence when I engage in discussion it's more a cross between a "Socratic Cafe" and a Victorian Salon than it is a scientific paper up for peer review.

- On Edward de Bono's work: http://www.edwdebono.com/

http://www.valuebasedmanagement.net/met ... _hats.html

http://www.realinnovation.com/content/c081110a.asp
Perhaps using more common parlance would invite more discussion from more (and differently minded) people?
That is true... up to the point where I must use vernacular specific to game design, military doctrine and coding.... however I will, in those instances, provide clear, concise, explanations and also references that will offer those genuinely interested more exhaustive coverage than I can do in a short post, relatively speaking.

Now I have also observed a preponderance of lazy minds and dispositions - to the extent they can't even be bothered using Google to educate themselves in 10 minutes flat or less or the forum search engine... or take 15 seconds for a simple post unless they need help resolving a problem or simply are soliciting feedback and even when they get a response they ain't got sh*t more to say and leave ya hanging - makes you feel you wasted your time like a fool. But actually that doesn't bother me anymore as I see it as insight into character which can be utilized by adjusting your future investments of time. Besides, I think most would rather engage a YouTube video than a lengthy post no matter how transparent.

I do realize that almost the entire foregoing paragraph could very well be cynical and terribly unfair... For all I know much can be attributable to a preponderance of ADHD.....j/k. ;)

I actually subscribe to Thom Hartmann's proposition that ADHD is a different perception. In brief: Hunters in a Farmers world.... Some elaboration links follow:

http://www.thomhartmann.com/index.php?o ... &Itemid=49

http://www.thomhartmann.com/index.php?o ... &Itemid=58

http://users.rcn.com/peregrin.enteract/add/addcol.html

- And btw, I see a central connection between Thom Hartmann's metaphor of a hunter in a farmers world and the tension in an RTS between building to battle strength and battle itself..

In the end, I am genuinely interested in what intelligent folk with good manners have to say about WZ, their own work on it and anything about the RTS genre.. As I continue to move forward with my RTS work I am conscious of being proactive in warding off an insular disposition during development.

- Regards.........


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Last edited by whippersnapper on 22 Dec 2008, 05:58, edited 1 time in total.
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"I need no warrant for being, and no word of sanction upon my being. I am the warrant and the sanction." Anthem

"Art is the selective recreation of reality according to the artist's metaphysical value judgments." A. Rand
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themousemaster
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Joined: 10 Nov 2006, 16:54

Re: The Future of RTS...& the 7 Deadly Sins

Post by themousemaster » 22 Dec 2008, 01:01

See? My post was critical. Most forum boards, someone who runs into a critical post turns around and gets defensive/emotional. You, in fact, have not; nor have the others on this board I've ever been verbosely-critical to (I'm looking at you Skirm :P ). I think since I've come to these boards, I may have seen a grand total of 5 posters who weren't helpful or contributive in the least (sadly, another one has shown up in General :( ). Of course, my draconian approach to "what is useful" would make me a lot of enemies if I were a forum mod, but...

That said, while I'd like to give an in-depth response to your post, I'll have to hold off posting anything further for the moment... work needs to get done, and it needs to get done by tomorrow morning.

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