Cities of the Frontier - now for BfW 1.11

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MRDNRA
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by MRDNRA » June 7th, 2012, 2:13 pm

I've had some ideas too.

Diplomacy: You can make a "peace treaty" with some bandits and give them some land for them to build say a couple of villages near the edge of the map. In exchange you would help each other defend.

Also, huge maps, say, up to the max size possible for Wesnoth, with a lot larger settleable (yay for new word? :D ) areas and more varied terrain, say, proper valleys in the middle of mountain ranges. Obviously the scale of the whole campaign would need to be increased, say, enemies have larger armies to make up for the extra time it would take them to reach your base from the map edge. Obviously the huge maps could be toggeable so you could choose whether or not you wanted the campaign to be played on a larger scale.

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Merthyc
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by Merthyc » June 12th, 2012, 4:03 pm

Cities of the frontier is by far the most enjoyable single-player gameplay I’ve had during the six or so years playing BfW, thank you for its creation.
Now for the constructive and speculative part!

Enemies

Having finished CotF around five times on normal and twice on easy, I’d say there’s nothing fundamentally wrong with the way the game is balanced under ‘normal’ circumstances. Now what I mean by normal are the average bandit raids, which can put the right pressure when arriving at the same time. The semi-scheduled orc attacks will crash on your battlements if made correctly, and then there's also the predictable elven ecoterrorism if you’ve been deforesting alot.

The only nasty problems I’ve faced so far have occurred when I was dealing with the usual hassle of bandit raids and the undead jump in from another angle. Of course, mages and heavy infantrymen are fine to fend off an undead attack, but I speak of undead attacks during the mid-turns of the first summer, when those things are quite expensive to get out. I can't complain too hard though, i've never died to it, but somtimes it led to a big save-‘n-load-a-rama, which I try to avoid. All in all you’re kept busy protecting your town/city without it becoming monotonous and constant. I love the change of pace during winter immobility, spring flood and the occasional breather you get between attacks.

A last note on the attackers, elves and undead aren’t hostile to eachother yet, I don’t know if this was intended, but it seems rather wrong that those elven shamans were healing a necromancer!

Buildings

I found this land in grass and shrubberies, and left it in farms and battlements, yes! The building development has been spot on as far as I’m concerned. The roads are a magnificent system to give your city a better feel while being perfectly scaled for winter and spring-flood prevention. Barricades are good, stone walls often a luxury – I like their indestructibility, but it seems odd they’re no different from barricades stat-wise. Perhaps improve them by 10% to motivate their conversion?

Now here’s the one suggestion I’d love to see realized more than anything else, a stone central camp hub! After a year or so I’m usually boasting a fairly large city, drawing the game on through another year because of setbacks or not wanting to win yet. At this point we’re looking at a fine city with many defences, farms, bridges, soldiers and… a tent! You see how this feels a bit off. I’d understand it if the option woulden’t be available for the first year of play or so, as you’re still setting up your society and first buildings, but as time progresses perhaps it could be made available. I’d be incredibly happy to put the ‘cherry’ on top of my fortress to finish it off and get rid of that wooden miscreant in my stone keep.

Items

Not much to be said, a fun and useful addition to the game, even the ones with negative effects can still prove very useful and interesting. The ring of magnetism is invaluable for the loyal cavalryman to make bandits so much easier on you!

Suggestions

I’ll try to keep it simple, I’m no modder or programmer and lord knows I’m only good for building terrain and castles in the map editor, so I’m unsure as to what limitations there are.

-Stone encampment defensive bonus increased by 10%, increased cost by 5 and build time by 1 to compensate, perhaps?

-Make the leader tent-hex upgradeable, motivation above.

-As Daravel mentioned above, an option to keep playing after victory conditions, or perhaps more difficult victory conditions (2000-3000 gold?), the goal of the campaign is to make a solid and strong community after all, not to have a half-assed one that jumps over the 1000 gold margin before the first winter because of some lucky orc jackpot! Usually when I get a good city up and running, 1000 gold is very easy to obtain. Some more strenuous victory conditions woulden't hurt the winnability, I'd wager. I think players can also enjoy their city more this way, rather than having to spawn a ton of units to push their gold down if they want to play on.

Just some thoughts

What I’ll propose here isn’t really a suggestion, as it’s rather drastic and related to personal taste, nonetheless I’d like to hear your thoughts.
Unit progression past level 2 seems more of a punishment than a blessing in CotF so far, something I applaud as royal guards and the like are rather illogical or ill-placed in a colonial setting. Then again, sometimes a level 2 unit going up with a full heal and an extra punch can prove invaluable to your survival, not to mention your loyal units at 3 being a must!

However, maybe there’s another way to go about it? I woulden’t mind if only my loyal units could get to level 3, as they’re strictly speaking the general’s guard, they get to be ‘elite’. But I'd like to see normal unit progression stopping at 2. This is radical, I am aware, but I find them far more useful and fitting in the context. Things could be balanced out if level 2 units would receive, say 5-10 hp extra and less experience requirements on their purple experience bar? I’m just saying this because I’d love to be able to have a small guard of level 2s without having them stand down to conserve gold once they progress to 3.

Now I don’t want to spoil anyone’s fun if there are avid users of level 3 units in CotF, maybe you could implement an advanced armory building to enable that advancement as well, so as to make it optional (notwithstanding your loyal units, of course, they ought to be able to level up regardless.)?

Bugs

I've hardly encountered any bugs, the only one that comes to mind are a few messages I get at the start of each campaign telling me a wolf was moved, or so.

End

Another thanks for this campaign and Descent into Darkness, I’m looking forward to further developments!

AfterDawn
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by AfterDawn » July 20th, 2012, 12:47 pm

Hey esci, its been over two months since we last heard from you. I'm already addicted to this campaign and dying for more content. Everything ok on your side?

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dogscoff
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by dogscoff » July 31st, 2012, 10:20 am

I've just started playing this campaign, lost a few proto-cities on difficult before making some progress on normal. I am about to move into my first winter, so obviously I haven't seen everything that CoF has to offer. However I am already hooked, and I have to echo MerthyrC's sentiments: This is by far the most enjoyable campaign I have come across in years. I just know I will be playing this for a long long time to come. It is already well-balanced and could be considered nearly complete. However there is just so much potential for growth...

I would like to add my 0.02 to the thread in terms of suggestions.

1 - Stone castles: Yes, definitely, this should be an option. Rather than give them a better defence than wooden ones, maybe you could make the wooden castles prone to being washed away in the spring floods, and the stone ones more permanent. Or maybe some kind of orcish sapper/siege unit that can destroy wooden fortifications easily, but not stone ones. That would give players a reason to upgrade, although to be honest just the cosmetic reason is enough for me. I always try to scout for one of the abandoned stone castle tiles before I build my camp, then build the camp adjoining the castle!

2 - level 3 units. I don't like the idea of removing level 3 units from the game. Many campaigns (A New Order, Burning Suns) have modified the traditional levelling structure (usually only for the main characters, admittedly) in favour of a choice at level up time. Maybe when a level 2 unit gets enough XP, the player could have a choice between upgrading the unit to level 3, or leaving it at level 2 with a small increase in HP and/or full heal?

3 - endgame: I haven't actually reached the end yet, but I don't like the idea of finishing the game and losing my city just because I started to become successful. Again, options would be nice: "Congratulations, you have achieved the victory condition! Finish game or continue to advanced victory condition?"
I think ultimately (and this would probably be a feature to be included in the far future) you'd want the option to expand the map: Once you have met certain conditions to indicate that you have fully tamed your territory, you can build a road from your castle to a signpost, and the map expands to include a massive new territory in that direction. Naturally, it would be crawling with orcs and bandits and so on, and with another signpost at the far edge.

4 - Bridges. I haven't yet encountered a body of water big enough to really need a bridge, but I played with bridge-building anyway. It seems you can only create north/south bridges, even if you are bridging East/West. Of course this is only cosmetic, but I suspect that I am not alone in that I want my city to look nice!

5 - Land reclamation. It seems you have included the ability to tame just about every type of terrain except for water. Is there a reason for this? It would be *really* useful. Perhaps too useful?

6 - Maps: I like the random maps generated for this campaign, but I have a strong feeling I will want some variety after a few games. Coastal / archipelago maps would create a nice challenge (with Naga raiders!). Swampy maps with saurians? Caves could be interesting, but I might be straying into Dwarf Fortress territory here...

Anyway, I have a lot more playing to do on this scenario, so weight my input accordingly, but these are my thoughts so far. I'm really looking forward to watching this campaign develop, thanks so much for making it!

balmung60
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by balmung60 » August 1st, 2012, 3:39 pm

Well, there seem to be stone castles now, though I'd like to be able to upgrade my keep to stone as well for cosmetic reasons. For much the same reason, I wish I could "fix" the ruined castle hexes into proper stone.

Beyond that (and the north-south only bridges), this is pretty awesome. Looking forward to merchants as hinted at by the signpost messages.

Oh, and nthing a desire for a higher income goal. Maybe a menu at startup like how SXRPG determines starting gold (if that's possible). Something like 1000, 2500, 5000, 10000, and 25000 gold win conditions would probably work for a "short", "medium", "long", "very long", and "extremely long" set of choices.

Telamon
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by Telamon » August 3rd, 2012, 10:28 pm

Hi, I love this add-on, it's great.
The few things I would love to see:
1. The ability to reclaim water tiles.
2. Recruitment of sergeants from a new building.
3. Being able to demolish buildings, such as stone walls.
Thanks for reading, and thanks for the great work.

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Heindal
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by Heindal » August 4th, 2012, 7:41 pm

Well, I have just reached the winter. Its a great concept and it worked fine.
Good work.

Maybe its not a bug, but I finished three farms in the beginning of winter. One farm was aborted, two farms were built and they had normal terrain, not snow terrain, when they were finished in the first turn of winter.

What I don't like is the eternal fight for the survival of your town, but thats my personal oppinion. I'd recomment two little buildings that might be fun to have. A tavern that produces a small income even in winter and a watchtower to protect your borders. Maybe you could even add a way to hire mercenaries for a price.
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dogscoff
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by dogscoff » August 8th, 2012, 12:08 pm

Now approaching my second winter (on normal difficulty). I think I will beat this map eventually, but I cannot understand people who say they've won inside the first year. The attacks can be relentless and very hard to resist, this is a difficult campaign!

I like the idea of a tavern, I think a little more variety in the available buildings would be good, (especially in building sizes - it's frustrating having all these wrong-shaped 1, 2, 3 and 4-hexed patches of land within my defences that I can't put to good use). There should be limits though. I think a tavern only makes sense when you have a certain amount of population/ economy to support it - a town of 2 farms and 10 taverns wouldn't make any sense at all- just a small number of very very drunk peasants. Therefore limit taverns to one tavern per 5 farms or something. Maybe work the barrack buildings into the equation too.

Recruiting sergeants is good as well but again, I think it should only be an option for more developed towns: When you have built all of the other barrack buildings, then you unlock the ability to build a "military school" or something that lets you produce sergeants.

A watchtower could be good. It would probably take some coding, but a building that increases the view (ie, clears more fog) of a unit stationed in it would be extremely useful, especially in winter. I think it should only work for non-mounted units though, getting a horse up the ladder would be too difficult.

Also, it might be good if the orc-jackpot was randomly varied - sometimes 300 gold, sometimes 257, sometime 303... just to take away a little of the predictability, make it more of an unknown risk to launch an attack.
Collection of my wesnoth bits and pieces at http://www.dogscoff.co.uk/wesnoth/wesnoth.htm

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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by dogscoff » August 22nd, 2012, 3:30 pm

Winter 205 YW, medium difficulty. I think it's safe to say I've played this campaign enough now to give a valid opinion.

Image

As you can see I've built a pretty secure town. My income is enough to sustain a major force throughout the winter, including numerous level 2s and 3, (silver mages are hugely useful!). The moat (about 80% man-made) means that defence is ridiculously easy in spring, and only slightly harder the rest of the year. Extending my recruitment castle along the roads to join up with the border walls means I can deliver fresh troops to the front almost immediately. Unfortunately I was only able build out in one direction due to bad planning, but my next map will have this planned in from the start. It's only in the last few seasons that I feel I could easily hit the 1000 gold limit if I chose to reduce my spending, but I think I'd prefer to keep going and try to colonise the whole map.

Most of what I wrote before still stands, here is my updated list of suggestions and observations:

- I have managed to make diagonal bridges, but it still defaults to vertical where it can.

- It seems I didn't need to suggest making stone castle tiles un-burnable because I think that is the default behaviour.

- Defence is very difficult as you start, but gets easier as you build infrastructure and level your troops.

- A lot depends on the powerups you get. I got lucky with the firesword (gave this to a javelineer), levitation and strength (loyal swordsman), ice axe (meh) and mystic bow (loyal cavalier). I focussed a lot of XP on my loyals, and my swordsman is currently superbuff at 97 HP, >550 XP. With their magic weapons and proper support, heavily AMLA's loyals are damn near invincible.

- I suggest making the orc camp a wooden camp that gets dismantled when the leader dies/ leaves. That way the orc leader can be in a different place each time. Also, I will no longer be tempted to build my town out to the edges of the map just so I can include the orc citadel in my urban planning.

- The "Game over at 1000 gold" thing needs to be changed. I suggest adding further objectives.

- An option to upgrade your keep is a definite requirement. Maybe even the option to build additional keeps, so that you can move you leader out to the walls and recruit from there.

- An option to plant trees? Mostly for aesthetic purposes, but maybe it could reduce the possibility of elf-attack.

- Elven eco-warriors should actively target any peasant workers who are in the process of tree-felling. I always make a point of chopping some wood when the elves show up, just to annoy them.

- I no longer think it is necessary to make any changes to the levelling/ AMLA process. I made good use of level 3s and was able to maintain them. If you want to avoid level 3 units because of upkeep costs you should either retire units as they upgrade and keep a constant supply of level 1s to replace them, or opt for javelineers who max out at level 2 anyway.

- More buildings, in different shapes and sizes.

--I like the tavern idea suggested upthread, but I think each tavern should require a certain number of farms before it can be built.

-- Build a kennel to recruit dogs. The kennel itself should be cheap and take up only 1 or 2 hexes. Dogs are 6 gold, level 0 (no upgrade path, no AMLA), 7 movement, 3/3 bite attack, lame resistances.

-- A watchtower building: 15 gold, 3 turns to build. 60% defence, increases the view (ie increases the amount of fog cleared) of any unit stationed within it by 50%.

- "With no clear successor to take your place, the peasants soon fell to squabbling...". It would be neat if you could take a wife (rescue the princess?) produce an heir and then, if your leader dies, you simply get a new level 1 leader to replace him. After all CoF is more about the town than the people in it.

- Ability to demolish buildings.

- Randomise the orc-jackpot.

- increasing difficulty (more attacks, more enemies per attack, higher level enemies) as your settlement grows. Maybe link difficulty to the value of the player's existing buildings and troops?

- Other map types. A marsh / saurian map would be cool, or islands/ coastal with merfolk and naga.

- The same old threats from the same directions gets a little boring, I have some ideas for more events that might spice things up a little. Note that most of these encourage the player to get out from behind his walls and explore / patrol / develop the rest of the map.

-- Small, leaderless orc raiding parties consisting entirely of wolf riders.

-- A lone, wounded unit (peasant or woodsman, maybe an elf or dwarf) appears at the edge of the map, warning of orcs / bandits / undead in pursuit. He heads for your keep. A few turns later, the enemies appear behind him. If you can escort him safely to your keep he switches to player control and becomes loyal. To prevent building up a massive loyal army, this should only occur if the player has less than a certain number of loyal units already.

-- "The king is defending Wesnoth against / is waging war on the the vile [insert enemy here] threat. He demands that you send X troops for his campaign." You must send the specified units (at least level 1) to the southern signpost within 20 turns. There they will disappear from the map and your recall list. If you're lucky, some or all of them may return several seasons later, with added levels/ higher XP and / or depleted HP.

-- Recurring leaders: When the battle is turning sour for the orc / undead / bandits / elves, their leader might try to flee back to the signpost they came from. If they make it, they will disappear (with some "I'll be back" dialogue) only to return later with more troops and more dialogue than before. This is a small change, but it adds a little soap opera to the procession of faceless mooks who arrive just to throw themselves upon your spears.

-- A messenger arrives with news of an impending invasion, and your town will be on the front line. The king sends a number of troops to defend Wesnoth. A large number of powerful royal units arrive at the southern signpost. They are under your control, and are loyal. Shortly after, a massive army of powerful orcs/ undead appears in the north. You have to fight a huge, epic battle spanning most of the map to protect the kingdom. When all the enemy are dead/ fled the loyal units will switch to AI control and march back south again. You might get a cash prize from the King, or get to keep a loyal unit if you perform well.

-- A party of humans/ dwarves / elves/ drakes/ appears at one edge of the map and asks for passage to the far side. They probably have some enemies of their own who will show up soon after at a different signpost. You can choose to (a) allow them passage, letting them fight their own way to safety. (b) offer to escort them for a fee (payable upon all of the party arriving safely) (c) kill them and loot their corpses (they may have gold, magic items, or nothing). Be sure to kill all of them though, any survivors who escape to a signpost will be sure to return for revenge, bringing heavy reinforcements with them.

-- After a few years, the king might demand that you build and maintain roads and bridges connecting the various signposts, to allow people to travel around the kingdom more easily.

-- Some kind of hidden "loyalty" score that increases / decreases according to how well you have pleased the king. For example, failing to send troops, mugging tax collectors or murdering innocent travellers would anger the king. Killing orcs or paying your taxes would please him. According to your standing, you can expect the king to help or hinder you. Anything from sending friendly patrols to cross your map from time to time, to allowing you to build new types of building (recruit knights, sergeants and level 2 units?) to sending armies to destroy you.

-- If you really really please the king and prove yourself an effective administrator (build one of each barrack type, achieve 1000 gold and upgrade your keep), he will grant you some more land to tame. The map expands in one direction, allowing you to start exploring and exploiting the adjacent territory. If this new territory could be in a different terrain-style to the original, then that's even better. Obviously, you could expect new and/ or harder challenges to come with this new responsibility.
Collection of my wesnoth bits and pieces at http://www.dogscoff.co.uk/wesnoth/wesnoth.htm

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taptap
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by taptap » August 27th, 2012, 4:46 pm

Very nice campaign. Well done.

Looking at the screenshots of some other players, I don't wonder they got problems with the elves (and upkeep) - they must have cut down vast forests - I left most forests standing and my city is rather undefined - with some quarters in the west and south completely indefensible and I regularly have to cede some villages to bandits (and lost even library and stables to skirmishing rogues on the first turn of the second spring) and only weak defense buildings elsewhere. I am in the second summer and it looks as if I will win before the next winter.

Combining bowmen with cavalry worked fine for me (I need plains for the cavalry not walls.). I later built a library to get healers and some rapid reaction silver mages :) Never felt much necessity for spearmen or HI. In fact your perimeter extends so rapidly at times, that you either need an hilariously oversized force if you want to defend statically or something very rapid, which points to cavalry.

An optional idea would be to combine this with some side-quests in normal Wesnoth fashion, but giving you only your recall list from CotF (i.e. standed down units - I have a pretty L3 army building up there) or units from the map that have to help the king somewhere or settle a feud with neighbours. And maybe you can earn an unique unit there, a fencer, a horsemen or so.

Standed down units should heal somehow, maybe not instantly, but it is irritating if they are still injured a year later or so.

As is the difficulty lies almost completely in the first spring and summer and it gets much easier later on (with some gold reserve, veterans and on normal difficulty that is etc.)

AI: I love to watch bandits clashing with orcs or when a direwolf eats a trapper :)

PS. Ok, I played half of a calm second summer and won. With close to 30 villages it isn't very hard. The final message could be more uplifting.
I am a Saurian Skirmisher: I'm a real pest, especially at night.

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taptap
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by taptap » August 29th, 2012, 9:37 pm

Balancing: Currently when you recruit 2 peasant workers right away and build and build... you start to be comfortable (with 15-20 villages) already in late summer of the first year. In fact you are so much comfortable that you can easily lose some villages later and rebuild them after you handled those who attacked them, because in 1 year a village produces 180 income with only 25 initial cost. Maybe there should be something that slows down development somewhat. Making villages more expensive after the first 5? Limit amount of active peasant workers? Also I would increase the limit for the objective somewhat so the player at least sees two winters - or finish the campaign with a big siege that he has to repel after a while. As is difficulty is pretty high early and then rapidly declines.
I am a Saurian Skirmisher: I'm a real pest, especially at night.

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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by dogscoff » August 30th, 2012, 9:11 am

taptap wrote:Balancing: Currently when you recruit 2 peasant workers right away and build and build... you start to be comfortable (with 15-20 villages) already in late summer of the first year.
I admit I haven't tried that strategy, but I always seem to struggle finding large areas of land to build on. Do you just build and build anywhere and everywhere, a long way from your keep if necessary, or do you modify the terrain in order to keep things close? I'd like to see some screenshots.
taptap wrote:In fact you are so much comfortable that you can easily lose some villages later and rebuild them after you handled those who attacked them, because in 1 year a village produces 180 income with only 25 initial cost. Maybe there should be something that slows down development somewhat. Making villages more expensive after the first 5? Limit amount of active peasant workers? Also I would increase the limit for the objective somewhat so the player at least sees two winters


I would prefer to see some kind of penalty for losing villages. Maybe a morale score that can trigger revolution or lower productivity. Perhaps razed land and buildings need to be (expensively) cleared before it can be rebuilt. Perhaps orcs / bandits/ whoever get some kind of bonus for razing a village that allows them to have a reinforcements boost, or make his next invasion even stronger. That would encourage the player to build only as much as he can defend.
taptap wrote:or finish the campaign with a big siege that he has to repel after a while. As is difficulty is pretty high early and then rapidly declines.
That's a nice idea - if your treasury gets too full (900 gold) then orcs and bandits arrive en-masse to plunder it. It would make a logical "end-boss" for the campaign.


Finally, Taptap, in one of your earlier posts you said about retired units not healing - they do heal. Try it: Retire a wounded unit. You will see his HP is listed as wounded in the recall list. However when you recall him, he will have full health. Bug or feature? Probably a bug, since it lets you full-heal any unit in two turns at a cost of 20gold.
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taptap
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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by taptap » August 30th, 2012, 12:13 pm

I didn't recall the unit, it just looked like still wounded after a year in retirement :)

On normal (when I played with cavalry and bowmen only early on and later added only mages) most of the time I defended in the plains with cavalry ahead of my city. Now on hard, I built a more or less decent wall to the east, while to the north is a rather narrow valley with the defense centered on a village and forest close enough to provide ZoC. The south and west has no defensive measures at all (yet, I will build some during fall) other than natural ones and villages itself. But there is a late summer (first year) undead invasion that isn't yet handled. I don't change terrain other than building encampments, occasionally cutting trees (if it is one hex missing for a farm) or diverting water in front of the wall.

An easy patch would be to change village cost to 20+villagesonthemap*3 (or 2?), that is the 1st village cost only 20, but the 21st 80 gold (or 60 gold if factor 2 is used), rationalize that it is harder to get more settlers for your city and they need more incentives. Thus you are less punished when you lose a village in a tiny city, but a fast expanding city is hit harder when it loses a whole suburb to the orcs. It is then less attractive to get as much peasant workers as possible and build at a frenzied pace. (I understand the player winning in the first year used 3 and more peasant workers during summer.) On normal I had 25 or so villages at the end of the first year and started winter with over 500 gold, midsummer of the second year brought victory and this felt decidedly too early (about 30 villages at that point). Also I would change the objective to 2000 gold or (offer the player to set his aim himself) so that the player has to survive 2 or 3 years at least, which would be enough time to maybe get challenged here and there (especially with an increasing village cost). When you have enough income you generate a 1000 gold easily in a good season anyway, so it won't prolong the game endlessly, but your city needs to be a little more sustainable.

An event "raid by wolf riders" as optional orc event with 8-12 wolves spawned, some levelled (instead of your standard orc leader), that have priority on pillaging would be a nice challenging addition instead of the steady trickle of orcs you face so often. Even more so, when villages have incremental cost.

In the first spring not scouting too much can be a big help. As those spiders and levelled wolves take on the bandits that would otherwise harass you earlier.
I am a Saurian Skirmisher: I'm a real pest, especially at night.

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Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by Dwarven_Void » August 30th, 2012, 12:14 pm

dogscoff wrote: Finally, Taptap, in one of your earlier posts you said about retired units not healing - they do heal. Try it: Retire a wounded unit. You will see his HP is listed as wounded in the recall list. However when you recall him, he will have full health. Bug or feature? Probably a bug, since it lets you full-heal any unit in two turns at a cost of 20gold.
Actually, no. I checked the code. Units on the recall list heal 2 hp a turn. So they gain the same hp they would from resting, which is quite realistic
Merthyc wrote:
A last note on the attackers, elves and undead aren’t hostile to eachother yet, I don’t know if this was intended, but it seems rather wrong that those elven shamans were healing a necromancer!
Again, I looked at the code. This is a glitch. It is caused because the developer didn't want elves to attack wild creatures, and the same for undead. Unwittingly, this results in the elves and the undead being placed on the same team. On my copy, I wrote a small patch to change this, and also to bump up victory gold needed,(as the developer hasn't even visited the forums in 5 months, I think it's safe to say we won't see an update any time soon). If you are interested in knowing how this is done, let me know, and I can send you the patch. Or, you could look at the "create" section, and do it yourself.

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taptap
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Joined: October 6th, 2011, 5:42 pm

Re: Cities of the Frontier (aka sim-Wesnoth)

Post by taptap » August 31st, 2012, 9:51 am

Playthrough on hard:
I am now in the first winter on hard, after deliberately (well terrain is short too) stopping village building after 18 villages, but instead with better defenses and building all available buildings. It still looks very much winnable right now - I had quite some unit losses incl. L2s earlier, but always enough gold to recover. Somewhat to my surprise on hard even the second spring turned out quite challenging - losses include a silver mage who was trapped between elves and a spider when trying to retrieve a magic sword, a village and a shock trooper. On hard there is quite some remaining bandit population from winter hitting your city in spring, and there were orcs even in spring etc. etc. My proposals reg. village cost might have put me in a tough space here, but after all I am really wasting units. Heavy infantry is pretty much a waste of gold unless deployed against undead, the slow units really make everything more troublesome I miss my rapid deployment play with mainly cavalry from normal. And even now the only units I can stand down after reaching L3 are all cavalry and bowmen.

A small bug I only noticed now: in the turn between seasons units don't heal (36 to 1). This usually doesn't matter much, but it can matter on hard when you have significant remaining enemies, especially with slow (spiders) or poison (ghoul, assassin) and you don't get rid of the slow or the poison on your first turn.

My personal wishlist:

* Incremental village building cost, proposal is village cost for (n+1)th village to be sth. like 20 + n*2 (first 5 villages still average cost of 25. first 10 average 30, but after 20 villages returns get somewhat smaller) - slows down exponential growth and makes village losses matter more for a large city than for a small, i.e. shifts a bit of difficulty to the later game and makes gameplay based only on rapid, exponential growth less viable a strategy.
* Optional raid by wolf riders of different kinds instead of one of the normal orc leaders, who aim at pillaging your villages (due to mobility it would be harder to handle than the standard orcs - this would make orcs pretty scary for spread out, hard to defend cities such as mine, and would give an incentive for conservative build
* Bug-fixes (healing on 1st turn of the season, elves and undead)
* Slight increase in the objective to 2000 - which still isn't so hard to achieve when you have a working city and orc treasures still would make up a good chunk of it (although I never killed any orc leaders), but increases the chance you see a second winter. Even 20 villages can already produce 1440 gold in one good summer. But it encourages you to go for a slower build with more variety in buildings and more defenses, with 1000 gold often not investing but banking is the better strategy.
* A better end. Like a royal messenger arriving and granting your successful settlement privilege to build a market or whatever and not a downer message that your city will survive 100 years and then inevitably fall.
* I personally wouldn't add tons of other buildings or possibilities (fishermen, mines, watchtowers, taverns and all those proposals) that would add much complexity without much benefit, my own sidequest proposal probably doesn't make sense for similar reasons. Better refine what you have already, balance it and add some flavour events and this is a top UMC campaign.
I am a Saurian Skirmisher: I'm a real pest, especially at night.

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