Author Topic: Death Cubes and Balancing  (Read 10928 times)

Alaric

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #60 on: May 31, 2015, 04:51:03 pm »
I wish, calling them deathcubes is somewhat misleading and misrepresenting the issue. Is there a better term out there?

The terms will likely arise naturally from exactly what is being optimized. Certain properties tend to have mutually exclusive optimal geometries, e.g. heat dissipation (if such a mechanic is employed) favors a high SA/V ratio whereas shield efficiency favors a low SA/V ratio. Different shapes also lend themselves to hardpoints with wider firing arcs, or smaller sensor profile, or complementary thruster placement. I consider this a good thing, as it helps to prevent one single "best" design from emerging - there should be some tradeoffs to consider.

The example of "deathcube" implies a weapons-heavy (even that can be broken down further: alpha strike, or DPS?) cube shape; that is only one kind of optimization, and it may need to sacrifice survivability in order to excel in its feared role. Until the specific game mechanics are known we actually don't know which of those optimizations will be represented (and secondarily, what forms will actually be most efficient for some of those optimizations). Any generic term to describe all classes of optimized ships would probably be so broad as to be uninformative despite no longer being misleading. "Mathships" is the only thing I can think of that is not longer than the term "optimized ships" itself.



Setting up reputation that tracks that kind of thing and then using it to initiate the privateers/bounty hunters/space horrors, curved to the power of the vessel *AND* the amount rep the player has, would curtail high-powered-but-docile players being targeted.

I disagree with using ship characteristics (strength, efficiency, whatever) to determine any kind of player reputation. While a discussion of the details of a player reputation system deserves its own thread (this being the most relevant existing one I could conjure), the properties of one's specific "tools" should not change one's personal rating. A dangerous player in a weak ship is still more of a threat than a meek player in a strong ship, so what's the point - especially since players are expected to be able to change ships? At most, tack on a qualifier like "armed and dangerous" or "known to use efficient designs," but those are still tendencies/expectations of the player rather than their individual ships.
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MRC

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #61 on: May 31, 2015, 05:34:09 pm »
"Mathships" is the only thing I can think of that is not longer than the term "optimized ships" itself.

Mathships, Statships, Minmax-ships or Minmaxers... I like those.  ;D
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Me2005

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #62 on: June 01, 2015, 02:49:29 pm »
I disagree with using ship characteristics (strength, efficiency, whatever) to determine any kind of player reputation. While a discussion of the details of a player reputation system deserves its own thread (this being the most relevant existing one I could conjure), the properties of one's specific "tools" should not change one's personal rating. A dangerous player in a weak ship is still more of a threat than a meek player in a strong ship, so what's the point - especially since players are expected to be able to change ships? At most, tack on a qualifier like "armed and dangerous" or "known to use efficient designs," but those are still tendencies/expectations of the player rather than their individual ships.

That'd be the least of the qualification, and largely used to determine what size enemies to send his way. If a player is KO'ing hundreds of military vessels in a shuttle, he's obviously more of a threat than one who is KO'ing hundreds of military ships in a death star. But if the death star ship downgrades to a shuttle, he shouldn't be harassed as harshly until he starts raking up kills in the new ship. It might simply boil down to "The  rating (that determines bounty hunter/pirate/space horror attack chance) only persists as long as you're in the current ship or undefeated in a new ship." You loose your ship to combat, you get a new rating.

Now, that'd be separate from the "We hate/love you" rating assigned by factions. If you're killing the star police all day long, getting a new ship doesn't make them hate you less. Dying and then trying to fly through their systems in a shuttle should get you wrecked.

You can track player-kills and jumps-over-time separately and why not add 'average credit expenditure per station stopover' to calculate chance of pirates coming in for freebies.  An industrial miner need only worry about pirates, saboteurs, and gremlins; a battleplate pulling a sector patrol needs to worry about everything but can more or less ignore the threat of pirates since pirates go after soft targets.

I'd actually want it set up so that only extremely high-profile miners/entrepreneurs need worry about any sort of random attack as long as they aren't flying into dangerous space. Even a heavy hauler or a large-scale miner working in civilized space should be completely safe (really even from other players in some sectors) until they start getting armed escorts or carrying military grade equipment and have shown a penchant for using it on occasion. But the same ship could voluntarily fly into hostile/pirate space and be an open target. Ideally, you'd set the game up such that those kinds of spaces were more rewarding for players to enter to offset the danger.
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Czorio

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #63 on: June 02, 2015, 01:23:46 pm »
Elite: Dangerous just has a few ranks in a couple of professions. From Harmless to Elite in the combat profession which you train simply by shooting shit. This is also broadcast to other players so they know you are not to be messed with.
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Cy83r

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #64 on: June 07, 2015, 03:46:29 pm »
Oh, I just remembered the classic real-world example of the deathcube.  The Dreadnaught, those vessels that need not fear anything.

Up into, IIRC the first world war, battleships had a mix of guns across several calibers, the advent of the HMS Dreadnought introduced the streamlined weapons profile and up-armoring allowed by that streamlining of the "All Big Gun" BB.  The iconic Iowa class battleship with its 9 sixteen inch cannon or the legendary Yamato's 18in guns are the last and greatest examples of the Dreadnought's legacy.

Oh, what if, as players rank up their civil engineering projects and build bigger and bigger noncom ships for just moving equipment and cargo around, the NPC ships (and stations) start to get bigger too?  I mean, it'd be weird to be the only guy in space with a leviathan mass hauler and have pirates attacking just you in a sudden strike by battleships and carriers where there used to be picket boats and long-jump escorts.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2015, 03:49:27 pm by Cy83r »
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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #65 on: June 07, 2015, 04:28:08 pm »
Oh, I just remembered the classic real-world example of the deathcube.  The Dreadnaught, those vessels that need not fear anything.

I wouldn't call a dreadnought a death-cube. They're actually nicely balanced being slow, severely expensive and somewhat ineffective against small targets and aircrafts and can rarely engage on their own terms. A real death-cube would dominate in all those fields along with firepower and resilience.  :P
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Me2005

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #66 on: June 08, 2015, 11:23:28 am »
Oh, what if, as players rank up their civil engineering projects and build bigger and bigger noncom ships for just moving equipment and cargo around, the NPC ships (and stations) start to get bigger too?  I mean, it'd be weird to be the only guy in space with a leviathan mass hauler and have pirates attacking just you in a sudden strike by battleships and carriers where there used to be picket boats and long-jump escorts.

See, I'd just assumed that NPC's would always have huge ships/stations around, they just might not be as prevalent if you were in a smaller ship. From my EV-playing days, there's a sense of awe when a giant NPC capital ship jumps in and cruses past your tiny shuttle. And one of horror when it jumps in while you're been busy pirating defenseless cargo-haulers.
But you were dead a thousand times. Hopeless encounters successfully won. A man long dead, grafted to machines your builders did not understand. You follow the path, fitting into an infinite pattern. Yours to manipulate, to create and rebuild.

I know who you are.

You are destiny.

MRC

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #67 on: June 08, 2015, 09:26:58 pm »
See, I'd just assumed that NPC's would always have huge ships/stations around, they just might not be as prevalent if you were in a smaller ship. From my EV-playing days, there's a sense of awe when a giant NPC capital ship jumps in and cruses past your tiny shuttle. And one of horror when it jumps in while you're been busy pirating defenseless cargo-haulers.

Agreed, you'd also think that a game called Blockade Runner would always have some stupid powerful ships you need to avoid and hide from, that's what a blockade runner does. It'd be interesting to see ships that can obliterate you even far in the late game when you've min-maxed everything. There should always be bigger than yourself, keeps things interesting.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2015, 11:27:27 pm by MRC »
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Niwantaw

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #68 on: June 09, 2015, 12:14:25 am »
There should always be bigger than yourself

Guise. Guise. They're chasing me with planet sized BBs.... I haven't got enough time to build something bigger again T.T
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Aaron

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #69 on: July 02, 2015, 12:33:20 am »
@RLS0812

Our design for combat is steadily moving away from a heavily physics-oriented one, just FYI.  Space Engineers (and others in the field) seem to want to take that direction, meanwhile we've not been terribly inspired by it.  Was kewl back in 2011... we're having some new thoughts now. ^.^
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Cy83r

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Re: Death Cubes and Balancing
« Reply #70 on: July 07, 2015, 04:00:05 am »
Space Engineers is not even close to physics oriented. An internal and external logistics modelling game, maybe, but they are nothing near proper or internally consistent physics.

Absolute rage-triggered- and, I'm over it.
Jibreel: Yeah but [Hufer] that's like [Axis] complaining that his Toyota Camry is stuck in the mud and you responding "Well my M1 Abrams doesn't seem to be having much trouble."