Re: Commanders: Original Vision, Crippled Default, Future De
Posted: 23 Mar 2012, 05:13
Strategy by Design
Sounds good to me.Emdek wrote:+1 for dedicated thread for (each) experimental implementation (maybe linked in one of reserved posts?), as this one got really long and full of off topics.
Perhaps one of these 2 types of commanders could be an inexpensive version designed to be mounted on a lighter body, for leading groups of likewise cheaper Cyborgs and light-bodied vehicles, while the other type could be a more expensive version, with more HP, that's designed to be mounted on a heavier body, for leading groups of likewise heavier, more expensive tanks in battle. That way, you could create efficient, if somewhat expendable, commanders for leading a zerg rush, or you could create efficient, high HP commanders for leading a smaller, but more powerful, task force. Note to self: consider implementing these kinds of commanders for my mod.Shadow Wolf TJC wrote:Ideas that I'm moderately in favor of in the short term:
Increase the initial unit cap for assigning to commanders to somewhere between 10 and 14 for a fresh commander. I agree that commanders' unit limits currently seem too small for the multiplayer environment, though I don't want to give fresh commanders the ability to lead entire batallions of 25 or so tanks either. 10 to 14 seems like a reasonable starting point.
Remove limits on how many commanders a player may have at a time. If 10 to 14 units per commander still seems like it's too steep a number, then perhaps we could increase, or even remove, the limit on how many commanders a player can control.
Boost HP, though only for more advanced Command Turrets. The HP of T1 Command Turrets is currently fine as it is, though the HP boosts provided by more advanced versions don't seem to do them enough justice, as more powerful weapons, and weapon upgrades, start to hit the field.
Reduce the cost of command turrets, especially the more advanced versions. The price of Command Turrets can reach as high as $1750! I've seen fortresses that are cheaper than that!
Not require line-of-sight for assigning targets for direct-fire units only. While I'd like for commanders to be able to assign attack targets, even if they don't have line-of-sight to them, I'm worried about how this could be abused with indirect-fire units. I don't exactly like the idea of a commander being able to hide behind terrain while it directs indirect fire units and structures to attack its target. Therefore, I'd like to limit this feature to direct-fire units only.
Ideas that I'm in favor of, though I doubt that they could be implemented anytime soon:
Drive assigned units in a specific order. This would indeed help in terms of micromanaging which units should close in and which should keep a distance, though I believe that it would not be all that easy to program in.
Multiple attack vectors for assigned units. As useful as such a system would be, this would require some sort of possibly-sophisticated computational algorithm whatchamacallit in order to determine who should attack what. It would need to account for not only weapon multipliers, but may also need to account for kinetic/thermal armor, or even determine targets based on how deadly their weapons are to the group overall.
Ideas that I'm neutral or skeptical about:
Increasing the commander's range. Increasing it to the point where most, if not all, direct-fire weapons can't outrange them may be all fine and dandy, but I'm not exactly comfortable with giving them a range as great as mortars.
Remove the requirement for a Command Relay Center to be present. They seem to provide far too little functionality to be worth keeping, though I'm not exactly in any rush to see them removed ASAP.
Toggle an auto-assign/unassign mode for commanders. That could reduce micromanagement a bit, but what if you don't want certain units, such as artillery or specialized direct-fire units such as Bunker Buster Hovers, to be assigned to any commanders at all? I fear that it could just as likely frustrate players as much as it could help them. Perhaps giving commanders some sort of area-of-effect aura that provides the experience-boosting effect towards any friendly units within its range would work better?
Assigned units follow formations. I don't see how this could provide any benefits for this game. Most maps have bottlenecks that are too narrow to even support formations in general.
Ideas that I'm opposed to:
Giving commanders cloaking abilities. If you want to implement stealth in a game, then you should also implement a means of detecting them. Otherwise, they'd be overpowered.
Giving commanders a weapon. Commanders already have high HP, which they need more than any weapon to survive due to how enemies would prioritize attacking commanders over other units.
Two types of commanders. I really don't see any reason why this needs to be added. Commanders need as much HP as they can get, so the idea of fragile commanders seems outrageous. Also, for so-called "super commanders", see my replies on reducing commander costs (which I support) and giving commanders weapons (which I oppose).
Indirect-fire commanders. In terms of purpose, this seems similar to the idea of commanders not requiring line-of-sight in order to be able to assign attack targets, and much like that, I'm concerned that this could be abused with indirect-fire units. Moreover, I think that the idea of an arcing designator beam seems ridiculous, as how would such a thing work?
I don't believe that's good. Whatever if one part of the units could do more damage to another enemy, it's probably better to reduce one enemy at a time than to spread the energy.theArmourer wrote: 3. Give the commander multi-targeting abilities. This would be based on level, and allow the commander to assign targets based on units weapon types. (MGs would have priority cyborg targeting)
~ This thread is all about making the use of Commanders a viable winning option in MP. CAM is not a consideration because it would require a re-tooling of the Campaign itself. SKI is not a consideration because it would require making an AI that utilized such improved Commanders otherwise it would place it at yet another disadvantage. In short, remaking CAM or a new SKI A.I. is not our goal here.theArmourer wrote:Well this has been an interesting thread. And I'd like to preface this by saying that all my opinions come from playing Campaign(cam), and a little bit of Single player skirmish(SK).
With that said, I don't see why the commanders(coms) need a massive overhaul. I've never used coms. in SK, always going for air power, and in cam they are quite effective. Mostly they would benefit from bug fixes and enhanced pathing. Since it sounds like coms are underpowered in MP, there are some features that I think would give them tactical value, while not overpowering them in cam.
Bungie did this in their first "Myth" 3D fantasy strat game circa 1997 and it worked really well. Don't doubt it would in WZ as well. But right now it falls into the "pie in the sky", Longggg Term proposition catagory...1. Design a formation creator. This would allow players to create preset formations from the main menu that they could access from any game. Implementing these formations would be done through the CRC and could only be applied to units by a commander. Units could be organized by weapon type(cannon, MG, arty, etc.) possibly with a propulsion or body sub-type.
Ditto as per my conclusion for #1.2. Give the commander customizable targeting priorities. A commander could chose targets based on threat classifications and distance, and the player could create presets through the main menu.
I believe multiple Commander led combat groups as per the re-tooled Mini-Map / Command & Control / UI /AI presented in the above mock-up posting, a more flexible, design elegant, GP richer & viable proposition without any of the downside of force strength dilution pointed out by Iluvalar.3. Give the commander multi-targeting abilities. This would be based on level, and allow the commander to assign targets based on units weapon types. (MGs would have priority cyborg targeting)
I need to go sleep so I'll be brief now & try to do a better job of explaining tomorrow.theArmourer wrote:I don't have 3.1, and I don't have time to do testing, so I'll ask: Do all units fire on a commander's target? or just enough to kill it?
I don't really understand what you have going on in your picture, so I'll need to ask for an explanation.
eta: When I refer to pathing, I'm referring to the whole package; which, at my latest knowledge, was all rather clunky. It is certain that my information is out of date.