Defense (continued)

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Eponymous-Archon
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Defense (continued)

Post by Eponymous-Archon »

Continuing another one from the 0.8 features request thread...

WRT Miyo's comment about KISS here: I find attacking fairly complicated already and really don't try to do much calculating. Often I simply move the unit and check out the stats, then undo if necessary. Now you can't do that all the time (FoW, for ex).

Maybe we ought to include a way to show what the attack stats would be without moving the units? Surely the AI makes these calculations?

(This means too that I wouldn't mind different melee/ranged defense values, since the current system is beyond what I can easily handle already. :grin:)
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Kamahawk
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Post by Kamahawk »

The defence % sytem is allready realy simple. I'm not sure how you cant understand it.
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Eponymous-Archon
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Post by Eponymous-Archon »

Kamahawk wrote:The defence % sytem is already really simple. I'm not sure how you cant understand it.
Well, different units get different defense % depending on terrain. So that's already a pretty big set of data points. Add in resistance (the kind of weapon (blade, etc)) and that changes the number of points of damage done. Add in that magic is always 70%, marksmen always 60%, and there's some more. Throw in day/night changes.

It's a pretty large set of data, and new units are constantly added. So I usually end up moving and undoing.

I'm not saying it's too complex, just fairly complex already, so adding a change in melee vs ranged doesn't seem like a big addition to me.
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Dave
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Post by Dave »

The chance to hit is simple. Sure, it uses a sizeable lookup table, and memorizing the entire lookup table is difficult, but understanding how it works is simple.

The way in which zip codes work in most postal systems is conceptually simple [1], even though there'd be a massive lookup table for any zip code system. It's the same sort of thing.

Remember that if you want to see how well a unit defends in certain terrain, just click on the unit, mouse over the terrain you're interested in, and the defense value will be displayed in the top-right corner of the screen.

Magical and Marksman are just two special exceptions that imo aren't so complicated to remember.

The way in which damage is calculated is more complex. I could tell you the chance to hit a spearman in forest off the top of my head (50%), but not how much damage a strong horseman will do when charging at a skeleton during daylight. I usually have a rough idea, but never know exactly.

For damage, I think more vaguely -- I know that piercing weapons will do little against skeletons and alot against mounted units. That lawful units will do more during the day. So on and so forth.

I want to implement a system that would allow you to move your units and then undo even when there's fog of war or shroud. The way it'd work is not showing you what's under the fog of war/shroud unless you decided to 'commit' your move.

David

[1] Yes I know there'd probably be all sorts of laws and methodologies on how to divide areas up into zip codes, but the underlying concept of mapping geographic areas to numbers is simple.
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Post by Darth Fool »

May I suggest a way around the problem of "too many" parameters to follow for the attack/defense. In stead of allowing an undo, I beleive the objections could be handled by providing a mechanism where you could see the attack calculations (chance/damage) between any two units. So, say, you click a button or menu item, then click on an attacker, click on the defender, and voila, you can see if you want to move your tentative attacker next to the defender unit without having to go pouring through tables to figure out what your chances are. Personally, I am in favor of complex game play AND simple user interfaces. If we wanted to play GO, we wouldn't be playing BfW, now, would we...?

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Post by miyo »

Wesnoth has and should have simple gameplay.

- Miyo

Christophe33
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Post by Christophe33 »

As Miyo pointed out, there is no technical problem into having different value of defense for range vs melee attack. And since it will be a table, there is no variable (i.e the % chance is the same all the time on the same terrain). You don't need to learn by heart the % chance to hit...computer are here for that and can display the number for you.
You will just know that a horseman in plain is an easy target for a bowman (no range weapon and easy to shoot at) but harder to hit in melee. In forest the horseman would end up a bit more difficult to hit by range weapon but would have a bad defense in melee..leading to some interesting dilemms on were to place such unit :).
For some unit there would be no or little differences between the defense against range or melee while some will have fairly big differences to reflect their special situation.
Here is an example for mounted unit.
Defense mounted(old)--> Range Melee
Tundra.......70----------> 70 ......60
Sand .........70----------> 70......60
Grassland...60----------> 70......50
Forest.........70----------> 50......70
Swamp.......80----------> 60......80
Hills............60----------> 50......60
Mountains...80----------> 50......80
Castle........60----------> 50......60
Village.......60----------> 50......60
S. Water....80----------> 80......80
D. Water....80----------> 80......80
These numbers are just suggestion to discuss the point.
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Post by Darth Fool »

miyo wrote:Wesnoth has and should have simple gameplay.

- Miyo
Ok, perhaps it is a matter of semanitcs...
Would you be happier with "I'm in favor of complex game mechanics with simple gameplay."

Seriously, BfW compared to the likes of GO, checkers, and even chess has a fairly complex game hidden underneath the hood. What makes it doable is that computers enable these complex game mechanics to be presented to the player in a way that makes the game simple to play. I don't think that with the right user interface that the ranged weapon defense as a function of terrain/unit would necessarily make the game harder to play. I would agree that it might make scenario design and game balance harder for the developers, which in the end, may be what matters most.

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turin
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Post by turin »

my main point is that there is no real reason to implement it, many people (as in ME) think it would harm the game, and it would take resources to get it all balanced. basically, for who is it worth the effort?
it isn't for me.
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Christophe33
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Post by Christophe33 »

Right now the chance to be hit is roughtly 50% +/-20%. No unit have a defense better than 30% and few have 80% in a few conditions (mounted unit for example). If this is already too complicated, maybe it should be fixed to 50% for all units on all terrains...like that everybody will know what to expect.
I think you underestimate yourself by saying its too complicated. Driving a car is terribly complicated and no computer can do that yet as it was shown in a recent robot car race. However most people can do it without trouble and even manage to speak on a cell phone, eat and drink at the same time.
What I propose doesn't go out of the already used parameters but add some variation to take in account special cases (and there are many).
I don't think it will bring imbalances requiring "intense" since it is a fix and know paramaterAgain, as a player you don't have to know all the parameters or all what is under the hood. You want a simple and clear display of what is going on and that the chance to hit be the same in the same condition. You say that you already can't predict the chance to hit but it doesn't prevent you to play or make strategic decision based on what you observed and expect.
When you use an horseman, you expect a unit with a lot of movement and able to deal a lot of damage in most condition while potentially a lot back...
You don't need to know the exact speed, % of chance to hit or amount of damage to have a good idea on how and when to use it.
When you use a magician unit, you don't expect it to be good in melee nor to have a good defense even if you don't know the underlying parameters.
I just realised that mage units are a better example than mounted one for the reason to split range defense from melee defense... they should have bad to very bad defense in melee (except if there was a special magic defense) but not as bad for range attack. Right now it is always the same which make the game less interesting.


I like idea of being able to click on a unit then on another to have displayed the % chance to hit and damage as if you were initiating a fight without having to move your unit in contact of the enemy. If possible it should be implemented independently of this discussion on melee-range defense.
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turin
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Post by turin »

i think there is no way that i can respond to this, since i have already thrown out my arguments, except to say that i don't think it is a good idea. i guess it is a matter of opinion, and mine happens to that it would be a bad idea. whatever you decide, i'll play with, but register my vote as against it.
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Post by Eponymous-Archon »

Darth Fool wrote:
miyo wrote:Wesnoth has and should have simple gameplay.

- Miyo
Ok, perhaps it is a matter of semanitcs...
Would you be happier with "I'm in favor of complex game mechanics with simple gameplay."

Seriously, BfW compared to the likes of GO, checkers, and even chess has a fairly complex game hidden underneath the hood. What makes it doable is that computers enable these complex game mechanics to be presented to the player in a way that makes the game simple to play. I don't think that with the right user interface that the ranged weapon defense as a function of terrain/unit would necessarily make the game harder to play. I would agree that it might make scenario design and game balance harder for the developers, which in the end, may be what matters most.
Another nuanced post by Miyo. :-)

I agree with the Fool here. BfW uses pretty complex look-ups, modified by various factors. I am not unhappy with this, just pointing out that - as Dave says - it's pretty hard to remember it all. Most of us probably have a decent sense of what attacks will look like, but not a good enough idea for us not to check out what an attack would look like, then undo the move. Frankly a huge amount of my time is spent doing this. Do others not?

WRT the differing defense %'s, I'm not strongly in favor of it, but it seems to me to add very little extra complexity, and make good sense.

We do need to provide the users with good tables, no? More devo on the unit chart perl script? :-)
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Christophe33
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Post by Christophe33 »

I don't think implementing this change would bring more game imbalance or required more adjustment that bringing a new unit or a new terrain since it only split a constant number (% chance to be hit) into two constant: % chance to be hit in melee and % chance to be hit by range attack.There is no new variable to integrate just a different set of constant and the computer present you the result anyway.
It is easy to understand and accept that forest offer a good cover against range weapon while plain don't.

Note that bringing a new unit actually doesn't add more diversity in term of defense or resistance. There are 13 categories of units right now, like mounted, undeadfoot, woodland... And a new unit is placed in a category and receive the defense and resistance from this category (except overrride in the unit description file). For example all the elf units except the shyde are in the woodland category. The share the same cost for crossing terrain, the same defense and resistance. A level 1 fighter or druid has the same defense than a lvl3 Avenger or elf champion. A new elf unit would thus be same than the other from this point of view.
The apparent diversity between units is in the 3 factors affecting the damage not in the % chance to hit.
Making a distinction between range and melee weapon for the % chance to hit makes sense. I also think it will make the game more fun and interesting but we will most probably never know since it is unlikely that it will be tested.
The human brain is usually not good at making calculation involving multiple parameters even if they are simple its why we have computers and calculators...but we are good at making guesses on the outcome based on experience. When you throw a ball for someone to catch, you automatically integrate a lot of parameters and usually get a pretty good results. To get the same effect a ccmputer has to make complex ballistic calculation, specially if it has to use a robotic arm.
My point?
Don't underestimate yourself and you capacity to face apparent complexity.
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Post by miyo »

I do create most of my tactics in head (visualizing)... as I mostly play multiplayer games with FoW (pretty often prevents undo). Now that I have learned this way ("forced" to learn it) I don't use undo so much anymore to create tactics even when there is no FoW.

This way my turns are a bit faster in multiplayer games, of course there are mistakes - that is the human error factor.

- Miyo

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Post by miyo »

Christophe33 wrote:I like idea of being able to click on a unit then on another to have displayed the % chance to hit and damage as if you were initiating a fight without having to move your unit in contact of the enemy.
If there are different terrain types around the defender you would also have to select from which hex you will attack as that sets enemy chances to hit you.

- Miyo

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