Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

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Pentarctagon
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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Pentarctagon » November 11th, 2018, 4:28 pm

There was also this idea from a while ago.
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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by The_Gnat » November 11th, 2018, 8:58 pm

ghype wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 10:29 am
how would you explain health regenration on a falcon though?
Its current scavenger instincts probably don't explain it very well but if the bird is changed to a the Roc artwork then that bird could have some mythical ability.

It is a lot easier to come up with fantasy creatures than it is to balance a faction of units. The second should be aimed for and the first should be adjusted to suit afterwards. ;)
ghype wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 4:06 pm

About Liminal:

These are the most forward changes that could be applied to liminal.
What do you think?
I definitely agree.

But personally my biggest problem with the dunefolk is that they have different alignments within the faction making it impossible to gain any significant advantage by attacking at one time of day or another.

The first step should be to make all the dunefolk 1 single alignment. That would be an instant advantage because now the dunefolk can create strategies with its entire army rather than just half of it. :D

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Celtic_Minstrel » November 12th, 2018, 5:43 am

The_Gnat wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 5:39 am
-Will cause a bit if confusion as this is a unique exception
This is a non-issue; we'd make sure the movement cost of the attack is shown somewhere in the UI, perhaps next to the attack's name. It's not a unique exception; it's just an ability in the engine that seems to be rarely used. It really should've been added to the UI already, but most likely no-one ever bothered because it wasn't used anywhere.
The_Gnat wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 5:39 am
-Will cause the falcon to receive more damage (because the enemy attacks back after you attack each time) almost guaranteeing death of a weak unit.
I see this as a mellowing factor, discouraging people from actually taking advantage of the capacity of attacking multiple times.

That said, "attacking multiple times per turn" and "attack does not consume all MP" can be separated – the falcon could get the latter but not the former.
The_Gnat wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 5:39 am
-Probably OP because it is like the previously suggested power but it allows you to potentially move 6 spaces after attacking.
Well, that all depends on how many movement points it consumes. My example was 2, but it could just as easily be 4 or 5.
The_Gnat wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 5:39 am
low weakness
I just want to point out that "low weakness" is a strength. It's kind of like a double negative - weakness is a lack of strength, so if weakness is lower that means strength is higher.
matto wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 6:46 am
Sounds OP, better then berserker
It wasn't specifically a recommendation; I merely brought it up because it's an oft-overlooked ability in the engine.
ghype wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 4:06 pm
About Liminal:

I guess liminal is the biggest faction flaw most players currently see. It is something new, many poeple don't like it, but I guess with some time we could all get used to it. But not in it currents state. Any of my suggestions do not include stat changes. Unit stats probably will have to be adjusted

I see three solutions for that:
My personal preference with liminal is to leave it the way it is (which does not in my opinion preclude merging the pull request that Pentarctagon linked). I'm also against removing it altogether. Dunefolk are certainly not alone in having multiple alignments in a faction, so I don't see why you'd be using that as an argument.
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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by sunset » November 12th, 2018, 8:27 am

ghype wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 4:06 pm
.
About Liminal:

I guess liminal is the biggest faction flaw most players currently see. It is something new, many poeple don't like it, but I guess with some time we could all get used to it. But not in it currents state. Any of my suggestions do not include stat changes. Unit stats probably will have to be adjusted

I see three solutions for that


(2)we keep liminal's "day of time" dependency as it is, but redefine it's buff.

Yes, people can get scared if fighting liminal units at Dawn or Dusk, but apparently thats not enough to comfortably play liminal units.
So why not give them a reason to really get scared?

There are two ways to approach this.
One would be to increase the debuff from -25% to -40% (or so) and add a buff of 15%-25% for Dusk and Dawn.
A different approach would be to increasing/decreasing buff/debuff for 5% or 10% could make them much more scary units.
For Day/Night it would get only -20%/-15% instead of the default -25% and at day it would get the extra 5% or 10%.
I think 2 idea is the best

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Hejnewar » November 12th, 2018, 12:28 pm

Problems with ilminal:
2 turns of bonus that are far apart and this are problematic in early / mid game because you can't attack with all your might at the same time.
I think this was already explained.

4 turns of bonus in late game when you can freely swap rows of units - we do not have this now because dunesfolk do not have good enough defensive units to camp.
How would this look like? Ilminal attack and retreat -> lawful attack x2 and retreat then depending on situation retreat under cover of ilminal units or atack with ilminal units once again. And when not fighting units could be easly healed by herbalists (assuming that the would still exist in form that we know right now).

I think this is the reason why they can't have a good defensive unit right now.

Why drakes dosen't have this problem? It quite easy to explain: you can only do late game composition with drakes, lizards are not desinged to hold the line. Lizards existance is composed of quick precise attacks, pillaging and support instead.

Changing ToD bonus to split their power more equally: Nothing is stopping us from making them neutral when we are at it. I would really like to keep +25 / 0 /-25 stages.

Changing when they gain this bonus:
I like this more, attacks often can start at neutral ToD and are extended thru ToD with bonus but then again im not sure how this will impact balance becouse you sudenly gain 3 consecutive turns of attack with bonus instead of 2.

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by The_Gnat » November 13th, 2018, 5:20 am

Celtic_Minstrel wrote:
November 12th, 2018, 5:43 am
This is a non-issue; we'd make sure the movement cost of the attack is shown somewhere in the UI, perhaps next to the attack's name. It's not a unique exception; it's just an ability in the engine that seems to be rarely used. It really should've been added to the UI already, but most likely no-one ever bothered because it wasn't used anywhere.
That is really great. Yes if it is clear than this certainly could be a new special ability! :)
I see this as a mellowing factor, discouraging people from actually taking advantage of the capacity of attacking multiple times.
True.
That said, "attacking multiple times per turn" and "attack does not consume all MP" can be separated – the falcon could get the latter but not the former.
I would oppose over complication for the sake of a single unit (whose ability will not balance the dune folk in their entirety). However, I think your previous point and following point demonstrate why this would not be necessary in order to ensure the falcon is not OP. With a high HP unit this could definitely be over powered but with a scouting unit like the falcon it has to be used strategically so I don't think it is necessary to actually limit attacks to only one.

Furthermore for the falcon in particularly I believe the largest advantage is the fact that he can flee to better ground (or even out of the enemy's reach) after attacking. That would make him a really powerful scouting unit!
Well, that all depends on how many movement points it consumes. My example was 2, but it could just as easily be 4 or 5.
Yes that is very true. I think there is definitely potential! :D Furthermore the advantage of having a unit that can attack more than once not only could allow repeatedly combating an enemy but also allow it to attack multiple enemies in one turn creating a very unique and valuable role.
I just want to point out that "low weakness" is a strength. It's kind of like a double negative - weakness is a lack of strength, so if weakness is lower that means strength is higher.
Thank you for pointing that out! My English grammar is not of the highest quality :whistle: I probably meant "low hit points".
My personal preference with liminal is to leave it the way it is (which does not in my opinion preclude merging the pull request that Pentarctagon linked). I'm also against removing it altogether. Dunefolk are certainly not alone in having multiple alignments in a faction, so I don't see why you'd be using that as an argument.
Liminal is certainly a good alignment. And after considering your point I do agree that it is not the alignments that are flawed but instead the units.

Unfortunately the dune folk faction is unbalanced as a whole, and because of this there is no simple fix or single adjustment. Instead I believe we are probably going to have to make a variety of changes in order to achieve a cohesive and well balanced faction.

As for multiple alignments: The Drakes, Knalgans, and to a lesser extent Rebels are demonstrative that mixed alignments work well together.

(However, in the case of the Drakes the saurians providing mainly a supporting role as healers and scouts)

I believe that as the Rebels are able to fight well with the wose and mage on their team. Similarly the Dune folk can fight with a combination of alignments (if used strategically) and if the faction's individual units are properly balanced. :)

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Hejnewar » November 13th, 2018, 9:35 am

I think using neutral aglinment is not right.
Neutral aglinment does not give any bonus therefore neutral units are better for defensive and worse for ofensive. I think that lawful and chaotic units are nessecary to have becouse it gives them some insentive to fight and breakthrough power.
Having neutral + x does not provide any ToD time bonus - you always have two favourite turns to attack.

If I were to keep ilminal as it is right now and also current arts and only adjust numbers units could endup with statistics not fitting for thier looks.

Let me ask you a question: What is the practical purpose of ilminal existence?

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Elder2 » November 13th, 2018, 2:33 pm

An idea to give the falcon the ability to consume moves to attack would fit some fancy mod, but not default+dunefolk era which is based on default. This is basically breaking the rules of wesnoth in its most extreme form, my prediction is that people wouldnt like it but even if they did it still doesn't seem like a good idea.

Its hard to say with certainty whether liminal is a good idea or bad, im certainly against removing it from the game but whether to remove it from dunefolk is a harder question to answer. It might very well be the case that (I dont remember some of the new names) jundi was overnerfed, decreasing hp from 36 to 32 is a bit too drastic of a change. The horse archer for the price feels... pretty good, its quite tanky but its neither a very good scout nor a good damage dealer. It doesnt have 8 mp and 5-3 damage is not enough, main problem with dunefolk is that they deal too little damage, and they arent tanky either.
So I guess introduce some changes and test them.

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by The_Gnat » November 13th, 2018, 10:07 pm

Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 9:35 am
Neutral aglinment does not give any bonus therefore neutral units are better for defensive and worse for ofensive.
I agree, I think for the Dune folk the neutral alignment wouldn't really make any difference.

Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 9:35 am
Let me ask you a question: What is the practical purpose of ilminal existence?
I would say the purpose of the liminal is the same as all the other alignments:

- To add variety in units
- To fit with the thematic role of the units which the faction has
- To add unique strategy in factions and campaigns

The fact that it is currently so unbalanced unfortunately undermines this last goal, but nevertheless I believe liminal is valuable because of its uniqueness and the role it plays in the story and idea.
Elder2 wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 2:33 pm
An idea to give the falcon the ability to consume moves to attack would fit some fancy mod, but not default+dunefolk era which is based on default. This is basically breaking the rules of wesnoth in its most extreme form
I thought this at first as well until I considered the Berserker. The Dwarvish Berserker is a very unique unit who defies the rules in a singular way. However, he is not OP because his ability has been well balanced and it is not confusing because his ability has been clearly illustrated in the menu and probability statistics.

The Berserker is a unique violation of the rule (even more a violation then the falcon would because he allows other units also to violate it) and his seemingly illogical pattern of fighting doesn't make sense in the time-frame of the wesnoth game.

However, despite all this the Berserker is a great unit who I think adds a lot to the faction and is really fun to have! I see the falcon in the exact same way.

Furthermore as Celtic Minstrel pointed out to my objection that it might be unbalanced:
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:
November 12th, 2018, 5:43 am
Well, that all depends on how many movement points it consumes. My example was 2, but it could just as easily be 4 or 5.
Elder2 wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 2:33 pm
So I guess introduce some changes and test them.
I absolutely agree. I don't think removing liminal or changing alignments is the answer. I believe it is a matter of making small balance changes and testing them.

The problem though is that everything is debated for months before we actually test it, significantly slowing the process. ;)

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Hejnewar » November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm

I dont think that this was the purpose of base aglinments but ok.
And for me just the last one is somewhat practical.
Variety is not an issue in my mind, lack of identity is tho. Just look at their names. It wouldn't a problem if it was generic fantasy race, but it isn't.

Is there any campanning with dunefolks at all?

I disagree, berserk is using core mechanic and just repeats it many times. Attacks for movement introduce completely new mechanic that never existed in default era.

Changes can be done in matter of minutes, but what is the point if the only person who would care to even test them would be Elder?

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Celtic_Minstrel » November 14th, 2018, 1:31 am

For the record, I'm not specifically recommending making the falcon's attack consume a fixed amount of MP, nor am I recommending against it; I'm just pointing out the possibility as a capability that exists in the engine, in case it strikes someone's fancy.
Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm
Changes can be done in matter of minutes, but what is the point if the only person who would care to even test them would be Elder?
I'm pretty confident that whatever changes are applied will be tested eventually. It might take awhile, sure, but it will happen. You could always try a few games yourself, too?
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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by The_Gnat » November 14th, 2018, 2:11 am

Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm
I dont think that this was the purpose of base aglinments but ok. And for me just the last one is somewhat practical.
Variety is not an issue in my mind,
I do, in fact, believe that a key goal of adding the new dune folk faction has been to provide both uniqueness and variety (in both theme and gameplay). :)

I recognize that balance is important, but believe that if balanced is achieved at the cost of either of the other than it significantly reduces the value of the faction. In my mind the uniqueness is a key aim, because otherwise we would just have 2 loyalist factions and that would be uninteresting. :| (this is, of course, a hyperbole. I do not believe that changing the alignment would remove the variety entirely but do believe the variety that is added is valuable).
Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm
lack of identity is tho. Just look at their names. It wouldn't a problem if it was generic fantasy race, but it isn't.
I am sorry, I do not entirely understand? Do you mean you agree that if changes made in balancing the faction take away from the identity, than that would be an issue? If so I definitely agree :D and believe that the identity is certainly contributed to by the unique alignment.
Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm
Is there any campanning with dunefolks at all?
Well I think that it goes without saying that we shouldn't make a mainline campaign until we balance the units :)

Nevertheless I believe there are some UMC campaigns with khalifate. 8)
Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm
I disagree, berserk is using core mechanic and just repeats it many times. Attacks for movement introduce completely new mechanic that never existed in default era.
I don't entirely agree but I certainly understand your point of view. Adding unique mechanics for the sake of balance is probably not the ideal way to go about. However, I still believe this particular idea would be an improvement.
Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm
Changes can be done in matter of minutes, but what is the point if the only person who would care to even test them would be Elder?
Very true. But if no one ever tests them then we will never get anywhere. :whistle:

Thank you for your comments. :) It is good to hear an alternate perspective about what other people see is important in the Dunefolk.

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by Pentarctagon » November 14th, 2018, 6:29 am

It wouldn't be terribly difficult to create a "Default + Modified Dunefolk" era as an add-on, if that would make testing the changes easier for more people(liminal changes aside).

If no changes need to be made to liminal, this could go on the 1.14 add-ons server. If changes do need to be made, then ideally that could be done and implemented in time for 1.15.0 and the add-on would then go on 1.15's add-ons server.
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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by The_Gnat » November 14th, 2018, 8:37 am

Pentarctagon wrote:
November 14th, 2018, 6:29 am
It wouldn't be terribly difficult to create a "Default + Modified Dunefolk" era as an add-on, if that would make testing the changes easier for more people(liminal changes aside).
Yes I believe it would be quite easy. In fact I believe there are already 2 add-ons that have modified the dunefolk on the 1.14 database. :)
Pentarctagon wrote:
November 14th, 2018, 6:29 am
If no changes need to be made to liminal, this could go on the 1.14 add-ons server. If changes do need to be made, then ideally that could be done and implemented in time for 1.15.0 and the add-on would then go on 1.15's add-ons server.
I guess the problem is that no one can agree about what should be tested or what should be changed. We are in a hard position because the dunefolk are not bad for any particular reason but instead a variety of unbalances that are subtle and hard to point out (and convince others of).

If three or four primary causes could be identified (and every could agree about them) then some progress could actually be made towards testing changes.

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Re: Dunefolk balancing rework ideas - discussion.

Post by ghype » November 14th, 2018, 9:09 am

Hejnewar wrote:
November 13th, 2018, 10:47 pm
Changes can be done in matter of minutes, but what is the point if the only person who would care to even test them would be Elder?
As I already stated, I plan to port Khalifate/Dunefolk to Ageless anyway. So there is a place where I can implement all the dicussed changes.
For that however, we'd need to know what exactly we want to test.

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