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Hubert Cater

New Features

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Just an updated thread here based on the recent announcement of new features from the main page.

We've had a chance to test the bulk of these over the last few weeks in Beta testing and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive in terms of the new functionality and options for game play.

I hope you guys like the planned additions :)

http://www.battlefront.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1486&Itemid=1

Hubert

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All looks very interesting - I particularly like the sleep option for garrison units and the supply indicators on the map. Well done one and all.

Would it be rude to ask what the rough ETA is on this baby?

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It would of course not be rude to ask, but the answer is unfortunately still not definite... hopefully soon enough though ;)

Cater should go into politics !!

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Hubert, thank you so very much!

Great new feature, thank you so very much for implenting all this good, useful and long awaited new features.

I CAN'T AWAIT THE RELEASE OF YOUR NEW GAME!!!!

Make it expensive, you have earned it!

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Just wanted to thank the team for responding to suggestions about amphibious warfare. The ability to attack from amphibious craft and improve this ability through research is excellent news and, for me, overcomes one of the glaring issues with the system. Looking forward to this one. Just placed my order for Empires of Steel and just waiting to order Global Conflict!

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Thanks for the positive feedback everyone as I think you guys are really going to like this one :)

We've also made a few other changes to game play that should make some of the aspects of the war that much more interesting, i.e. for one example expect a significant 'Battle of the Atlantic' this time around.

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These new changes are great and will open up even more opportunities for gameplay and modding. Hubert's right about the Battle of the Atlantic too, it really is much more important than before, and great fun too! :)

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These are absolutely fantastic additions to the game. Glad to see an added partisan map mode.

I am most curious about the updated combat:

Updated combat to include an awareness of relative unit upgrades resulting in less bloody combat between similarly upgraded opponents. For example, two Level-2 Tanks attacking each other will incur damages similar to two Level-0 Tanks.

This sounds like a pretty big change and I am excited to see what influence that will have on the game. Could you expand on this a bit more, how exactly does it work when a level 5 tank attacks a level 0 tank? Will the level 0 tank be unable to damage the level 5 tank?

And how does this affect combat between different unit types, like fighters vs bombers or tanks vs infantry?

Some additional information on this would be greatly appreciated.

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Wushuki,

Glad you like the changes and to expand on the combat calculation changes here are a few more examples using Tanks. Essentially the current values for each unit target type will be the minimum but the minimums can change depending on the differing research Levels.

For example two Level-0 Tanks will combat at the following attack and defense values:

TA=5

TD=5

Two Level-2 Tanks, assuming TA/TD values increase by one point for each level, will be the following:

TA=7-2=5

TD=7-2=5

So you can see that with the changes they will attack and defend against each other at the minimum default TA/TD values which is '5' since their applied research levels cancel out.

A Level-3 Tank and a Level-1 Tank will be the following:

TA=8-1=7

TD=6-1=5

i.e.

TA is really 5 + the L3 which would make it 8

TD is really 5 + the L1 which would make it 6

At this point I have the engine look at the differences between the current TA/TD values and their base values.

The difference on attack is 3 and the difference on defense is 1. Since the difference on defense is lower this is the value that used to reduce both the attack and defense values bringing it to the base minimum for the defender and +2 for the attacker as shown above.

That's the basic algorithm and essentially the engine just looks at how it can bring either the attacker or the defender down to the default base value. If it cannot, i.e. if it is L4 attacking L0, then combat continues normally since one is already at the default base value.

* * *

In terms of different types the same algorithm applies since each type has an applicable attack and defense value, i.e. infantry have a TD (Tank Defense) value and Tanks have a SA (Soft Attack) value. If a Tank is attacking an Infantry unit and there is applicable research for each unit that directly contributes to the Attack/Defense values then the engine attempts the same reduction as shown above.

Hope this helps,

Hubert

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I should add that it works really well in terms of building up well experienced units and hanging on to them if you play your units just right.

For example, in some of my tests with higher level tanks such as Level-5 versus Level-5, instead of seeing losses of 9 points now it is down to 3 each. Of course knocking out 'Green' units with a Level-5 Tank is still the norm :)

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Thank you very much for explaining this, it is clear to me now. It sounds like a very good system, although it seems to imply a very large number of balance shifts. These will be interesting to explore. So if I may, I'd like to expand a bit more on this topic.

From your explanation I gather that the attack and defense values are used and not the upgrade level directly. Does this not raise issues with submarines? Because as the war progresses and submarines and destroyers get better, the submarine will comparatively get worse, because the submarine will never do more damage to the destroyer as long as the tech levels are equal. But the destroyer will begin to do extra damage to the submarine as the sub attack value of destroyers does increase, while the defensive value of submarines does not increase.

So a level 0 sub attacking a level 0 destroyer does 4 damage to both units.

A level 0 destroyer attacking a level 0 sub does 4 damage to the sub and 1 damage to the destroyer.

A level 5 sub attacking a level 5 destoyer does 4 damage to both units (5 damage gets subtracted for both units).

But a level 5 destroyer attacking a level 5 sub does 9 damage to the sub and 1 damage to the destroyer (no damage gets subtracted, because the sub defense value did not increase).

Of course, if we compare this to the old system, one might argue that a submarine attack of 9 damage where the submarine also takes 9 damage back is not better for the submarine then a submarine attack of 4 damage where the submarine also takes 4 damage back. I disagree with this view however as in the old system the amount of defensive battles that a submarine has to fight decreases as submarine and anti-submarine technology increases, because submarines will begin to kill in one or two blows. So while the submarines in the current system may die quickly to highly upgraded destroyers, the fact that they kill destroyers so quickly themselves when highly upgraded leaves the destroyers with less attacks on the submarines. But by keeping the offensive results of submarine attacks low, while increasing the offensive results from destroyers to subs, submarines will become less effective late in the game in this new system.

So in summary, if player A uses a level 5 sub to attack a level 5 destroyer of player B in the new system they will both do 4 damage. The turn thereafter the destroyer will counterattack and utterly destroy the sub. In the old system the sub would have done 8-10 damage, which would have made it far more difficult for the destroyer to counterattack. So this new effect of technology will gradually decrease the effectiveness of submarines as time progresses. The solution would be to reduce the damage to submarines as if their defense value would increase, without actually increasing their defense value.

Is this considered an issue that might be addressed or does this mean the war will gradually move more towards surface fleets?

Also, are artillery attacks affected by this rule when the artillery is attacking? If they are, artillery would be stuck at an an attack value of 0 for most combat situations. If they are not, artillery is one of the fewer units that retains its high damage in the late game. Is there any definite answer on how this will be handled already?

Many thanks if you are willing to respond to these questions.

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This brings up a good point, which obviously can be remedied. What I'm going to suggest is in keeping with the way it really happened and would emphasize the use of destroyers in multiple task forces as well as subs in wolfpacks.

Usually in WW2 naval combat, "first one found, usually drowns", but not always. Since submarine success has always been based upon stealth, I would like to see sub units get a surprise attack bonus if they initiate first contact.

This means subs in hunt mode initiate the attack against a disclosed enemy naval unit, not run into them. This will simulate a stalking, maneuvering tactic for subs to do away with an escort, ie. destroyers and could also be used in conjunction with surface raiders to provide some realistic naval strategies.

Indeed the "Battle of the Atlantic" could be quite interesting, but it won't necessarily be limited to just the Atlantic.

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I would like to see the bomber defense value upgrade from Naval Warfare tech dropped and make it tied to anti-air tech instead.

There is a third slot for naval units, what other tech makes sense? Presently TAC and bombers take too much damage attacking ships from the NW upgrade, better to make it dependent on the AA tech upgrade further diluting the use of MPPs

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Wushuki,

Thanks for your feedback and questions and I would say that the artillery issue has never really come up as 'artillery' is not currently included in the Global campaign maps. This is just a design decision due to the scale and an attempt to avoid some unnecessary clutter. But of course these units are still available if you should decide to mod them in.

That being said, I think with any change there will be some unintended side effects and we'll do our best to sort them out, but at the same time some of the side effects may still be considered reasonable and might be Ok to leave as is.

For example, while it is true that some upgraded units wrt SD will essentially render Artillery to perpetual Level-0, it may not be entirely unrealistic but at the same time one of the effects of Artillery remains the same which is the decrease in morale of the defender, i.e. the damages may be blunted but they will still lose morale etc. The other option is to of course exclude the new algorithm for special units such as Artillery and Rockets where the defender does not fire back.

For subs, one option would be to increase the ND of subs for each research level applied and that is something we can look into with our current testing.

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Hubert,

I'm delighted ARTILLERY is not in the new global game - on this scale it really doesn't work. Hopefully antitank and a few others are gone. This would be excellent - lets us concentrate on gameplay with simple mechanics but subtle strategy which I always thought was the strength of the game.

Like AMPHIB assault directly too.

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I would like to further incite a movement for the elimination of anti-air and anti-tank units for the global game. If anything they should be upgradeables to the base units.

In fact you could combine the anti-tank, art., and anti-air into the IW tech for infantry units and expand the available slot to amphibs so now infantry units could have IW, mobility, and Amphibious tech upgrades, no need for special units, except perhaps Engineers.

To tell you the truth, I'm ready to get back to simplifications, seems like some other people are too.

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