The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

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sergey
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The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by sergey » November 1st, 2019, 10:51 am

"The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics)" add-on is modified version of "The Rise of Wesnoth" mainline campaign with the next changes:
  • Early finish bonus gives points, which may be used to upgrade main characters.
  • Gold carryover is 5% - 10% instead of 40%. Starting gold is increased. This is done to improve balance.
  • Besides Easy, Normal and Challenging there are two additional difficulties inserted between the existing.
Any feedback, especially regarding the points system, changed gold carryover and balance in general is highly appreciated. Have fun! :)
TRoW points.jpg
Author of SP scenario Dragon Fight and SP campaign Captured by a Nightmare.
Created The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) version of the mainline campaign.

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Tad_Carlucci » November 1st, 2019, 12:50 pm

Discuss here, or on GitHub Issue 4533
I forked real life and now I'm getting merge conflicts.

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Mawmoocn » November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm

I don’t want to comment because I don’t consider myself as an expert on mainline campaigns and haven’t played recently, but here are some of my thoughts.

Gold carry over at 5% - 10% would force you to level units as you can’t gain gold advantage without the points system.
Some scenarios require more gold than veterans.
Point system has potential to be exploitable and probably won’t be able to compensate on losing additional gold.
Increase of starting gold can’t compensate for the loss of carry over gold.

Point system has these flaws (based on the image provided):
  1. Accuracy boost of any kind granted to a hard hitting unit (and units with slow and poison special), would disregard terrain advantages and potentially allow easier or faster early finish bonus.
    There would be high likelihood of being used much more than what’s intended and would possibly make other units obsolete.
  2. Allowing any unit to posses damage buff increase for other units (like leadership), would probably decrease the need of veteran units (max level).
    Healers, scouts and level 4 (and up) units, would eliminate the need of specific units (damage buff support like leadership) and could be the future standard.
  3. Resistance increase without limitations, could allow you to create near invulnerable units.
  4. Giving any unit an additional attack option(s), would defeat the purpose of drawbacks they had without it. It also allows better damage retaliation (counterattack) with potentially few to no setbacks.
  5. UtBS allows specific units to have leveling choices and these units are weak at the beginning. They also have a maximum damage output of not greater or weaker than the current mainline units.
    The problem with the suggested point system is that while you can gain powerful advantages, it probably has no maximum restrictions (either damage or supporting abilities and growth of stats) besides early finish.
  6. (If left unchecked.)
  7. Specific combinations of fearless trait, weapon specials and abilities would allow you to create unbalanced units if allowed.
Balancing campaigns to incorporate points, can create specific difficulty to point system if, a player fails to get some or would gain too much points. Hopefully won’t be an issue.

I’m not sure since it’s been a long time but it’s probably common to do early finish on harder scenarios rather than waiting, due to lack of either gold or units to deal damage.

I usually farm experience for units to be save and recalled on very difficult scenarios that requires damage or support.

Suggestions:
Spoiler:

My personal opinion is that it’s unnecessary to do this without getting the basic agreements first as you’ll possibly be doing this in circles, because the design is different from the intention of the scenario.

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by sergey » November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm

Player can upgrade only main characters (2 - 5 units) and upgrades are limited. This makes most of your concerns irrelevant.
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Point system has potential to be exploitable and probably won’t be able to compensate on losing additional gold.
Could you provide examples of the exploit please?
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Gold carry over at 5% - 10% would force you to level units as you can’t gain gold advantage without the points system.
Did you mean "you can’t gain gold advantage with the points system"? Advancing units is already an essential requirement for winning campaigns.
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Increase of starting gold can’t compensate for the loss of carry over gold.
Why? I increased starting gold based on my playtesting specifically to compensate lower carryover percentage. That way I eliminated 2 edge cases, so called "feast" and "famine".
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Accuracy boost of any kind granted to a hard hitting unit (and units with slow and poison special), would disregard terrain advantages and potentially allow easier or faster early finish bonus.
This sounds strange because mages are already high damage dealers with 70% cth, orcish assassins have poison + marksman.
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
You can get increased gold carryover percentages, if it was done by early finish system. No early finish means lower gold carryover percentage.
Increased percentage for early finish and decreased if no early finish sounds like imbalanced reward.
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Fixed gold carry over with additional gold limited by percentage. (x fixed gold + n% percentage bonus gold)
It is already available, isn't it? Player gets minimum gold + carryover gold at start of scenario.
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Allow only a fixed amount of gold without additional gold.
Again, already available as no gold carryover.
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Gold carryover is done by the greatest of the two predefined amounts. (example: Fixed gold (100) or 20% (for this example) gold carryover, if the highest is 20% carryover (875 gold / 20% = 175 gold vs 100 (fixed) gold), it’ll be used and if the opposite is true (199 / 20% = 39.8 gold vs 100 (fixed) gold), fixed gold should be used.) (20% should be changed for the desired flexible carryover percentage.)
This approach solves the "famine", but it doesn't help with the "feast" problem.
Author of SP scenario Dragon Fight and SP campaign Captured by a Nightmare.
Created The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) version of the mainline campaign.

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Pentarctagon » November 2nd, 2019, 4:26 pm

As a side note, something somewhat similar was added recently for DiD, so it's probably safe to say it isn't quite as high a priority as it once was.
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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by sergey » November 2nd, 2019, 4:40 pm

Pentarctagon wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 4:26 pm
As a side note, something somewhat similar was added recently for DiD, so it's probably safe to say it isn't quite as high a priority as it once was.
By the way, the rejected ideas are "Most units should have more than 3 levels of advancement" and "All units should have advancement lines that go to level 3". As I can see only several units gained additional AMLAs in DiD. Similarly in my add-on - only main characters can be upgraded.
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Created The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) version of the mainline campaign.

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Mawmoocn » November 2nd, 2019, 10:33 pm

sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm
Could you provide examples of the exploit please?
It’s not really an exploit but I saw that you can grant traits and weapon specials. Slow + drain + charge (sometimes combination of feeding and immunity to poison), could generate a better (sometimes nearly invulnerable) unit(s), if it was applied to non-leader units.

I assumed you could use points on every unit, if that happens in the future, you could use teleport and other strong abilities.

Farming early finish bonus becomes lucrative, if all units can gain these bonuses. (I doubt it but assassinating leaders/finishing early is an option.)

Since you confirmed that it’s only for leaders, the effect should be limited.
sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Increase of starting gold can’t compensate for the loss of carry over gold.
Why? I increased starting gold based on my playtesting specifically to compensate lower carryover percentage. That way I eliminated 2 edge cases, so called "feast" and "famine".
I assumed gold carryover system, was made to reduce excessive gold and to probably grant some sort of assurance. In effect, this increases difficulty as you will need to take into account that you need to save and earn gold, which could be bad (or good), depending if the intention was to reduce gold or make earning gold a part of the system.

If you decided to keep gold carryover system, I don’t think the increase of starting gold would be beneficial because the gold would probably be the same with slight changes, it probably keeps certain difficulties the same in theory.

You probably won’t need to worry about gold, so you could maybe choose to level more units.

Certain scenarios require more gold to allow mistakes, if starting gold takes that into account, it defeats the purpose of having limited gold (apparent for skilled players), but if it was limited at a certain bracket, you’ll probably receive more complaints on how they lack units.

Either way is tough choice if it was made for skilled players only, I assumed that excess gold was made to help with the lack of skill (probably won’t apply for higher difficulties unless they’re new to this game and insist on playing with high difficulties...).

Basically, increase of (a player’s) starting gold would decrease difficulty, and that makes it bad if earning gold was part of the difficulty.

Keeping gold carryover at a lower percentage is probably not beneficial, as it would look that the gold won’t be enough and increased starting gold already takes this into account.
sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm
This sounds strange because mages are already high damage dealers with 70% cth, orcish assassins have poison + marksman.
They’re fragile units but I assumed they’re like trolls, grand knights, shadows, (human) assassins, (elvish) ranger, berserkers, dwarves, drakes ...

If we assume that the point system (in the far future) would allow for certain (or any) units, mages would lose utility over greater units that allow more flexibility on support and damage.
sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm
Increased percentage for early finish and decreased if no early finish sounds like imbalanced reward.
The intention was to remove farming for experience and only letting excess turns gain more gold than allowed.

Basically, you’re trying to give them choices on if they like more experiences vs more gold. (I doubt it’ll be used like that.)
sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Fixed gold carry over with additional gold limited by percentage. (x fixed gold + n% percentage bonus gold)
It is already available, isn't it? Player gets minimum gold + carryover gold at start of scenario.
Fixed gold allows you to gain certain gold without being hindered by percentages.

It allows you to try carryover with bad performance, which needs a lot of tweaking to work. It’s intention was to work as an insurance to concentrate on keeping certain amount of gold and to punish using all gold on scenarios.

Additional gold is limited by percentage after fixed gold conditions have been met. The intended purpose was to allow you to choose earning extra income against earning extra experience.

Basically, it assumes the next scenario’s starting gold was non existent or the worse to make this work.
sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 12:35 pm
Allow only a fixed amount of gold without additional gold.
Again, already available as no gold carryover.
Some scenarios are hard to earn gold and minimises the reliance on starting gold.

Though yeah it probably isn’t the best.
sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 3:41 pm
This approach solves the "famine", but it doesn't help with the "feast" problem.
You could limit it by adding early finish condition (only excess turns gets more gold) for the "feast" problem.
sergey wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 4:40 pm
Similarly in my add-on - only main characters can be upgraded.
Unless this was changed in the future, that solves mostly everything!

So how could you use excess points? or do they remain useless after you finish upgrading what you want?



Pentarctagon wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 4:26 pm
As a side note, something somewhat similar was added recently for DiD, so it's probably safe to say it isn't quite as high a priority as it once was.
I’m not sure but well if that how it is, then I guess most of my points are nearly invalid. :lol: :whistle:

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by sergey » November 3rd, 2019, 9:26 am

You several times said about almost invulnerable units. Of course that is not what I want. However, upgrades will make units stronger (otherwise, what is the point?) So, the points system must be "balanced" - upgraded units will be stronger than regular units, but they shouldn't be strong enough to nullify the tactical part of the game. Besides that, the upgrades may be a nice touch to the main characters description. Like fearless trait for Prince Haldric and healthy trait for Lady Jessene.

In the first version there are no upgrades for regular units. However, in the other thread Tad_Carlucci said:
Tad_Carlucci wrote:
October 23rd, 2019, 10:37 pm
I'd consider allowing them to purchase buffs for any recruit or recall.
In that case, I think we should allow only several (maybe even one) buff per regular unit. However, I think players will generally choose to upgrade main characters. Not even because of the strategical/tactical considerations, but because they are attached to main characters and this is a RPG element in the game. Upgrading main characters is what makes Legend of the Invincibles so popular. For the record, I am not LotI fan, specifically because of the overpowered units. However, I do think that we can learn from it and make the game more fun, since RPG element is what a lot of people like.

Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 10:33 pm
I assumed you could use points on every unit, if that happens in the future, you could use teleport and other strong abilities.
I wrote that in the beginning of my first post "Early finish bonus gives points, which may be used to upgrade main characters."
Mawmoocn wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 10:33 pm
So how could you use excess points? or do they remain useless after you finish upgrading what you want?
There is an always available minor upgrade with increasing cost, Prince Haldric +1 HP. Initially it costs 3 points, each time you buy the cost is increased by 3. I am still playtesting the system and may change that in the future.

P.S. You are welcome to try it too. You may find more ideas after playing :) If you are going to do that, I could give you hints how to find several loyal characters that have upgrades. I am currently thinking about making the in-game hint more obvious, like this one
Author of SP scenario Dragon Fight and SP campaign Captured by a Nightmare.
Created The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) version of the mainline campaign.

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Tad_Carlucci » November 3rd, 2019, 4:36 pm

I was thinking along the lines of:

* Points per turn / turns per point / fixed point, for early completion set in the victory. Default: fixed 1 point for early completion.
* Points cost set per buff
* Apply-to filter set per buff, defult apply to can-recruit only.
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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Tad_Carlucci » November 3rd, 2019, 4:41 pm

Another thing I was thinking of was a FIFO buffer for points. Prior to the UI to spend points, this scene has a limit (default 3 or so) scenes back from which it will accept points. Older points are permanently removed. Points expended from the UI are removed from the oldest slot first. This needs some thinking, though, because we want the player to know on THIS scene that a given number of points must be expended or they will be lost on the NEXT scene.
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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Elvish_Hunter » November 3rd, 2019, 5:13 pm

IMHO, that "cancel" icon just looks out of place compared to the others (and indeed it is, considering that's a 16x16 image scaled up). In some add-ons I found this icon being used, that at least looks decent and will work until a better one is added to mainline. There are also tick mark, arrow left and arrow right icons somewhere.
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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Mawmoocn » November 3rd, 2019, 11:13 pm

sergey wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 9:26 am
I think we should allow only several (maybe even one) buff per regular unit.
Well personally, I’d like to have 5 use limitation or some type of skill branch lock, to prevent you getting too strong. (I mean it’s fine it they get stronger than normal, though I don’t know how you would add limits on them.)

One buff (leadership/distract/other units are affected type buff support) seems "safe" but, it really depends on mobility and the type of survival buff it adds whether by offence or defense. That seems fun (and probably sophisticated to squeeze out the best of it. :lol:).
sergey wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 9:26 am
However, I think players will generally choose to upgrade main characters. Not even because of the strategical/tactical considerations, but because they are attached to main characters and this is a RPG element in the game.
Hmm, sometimes it’s not really main characters that gets most upgrades but your favorite unit.

Picking your favorite could be as random as they surviving the recall list and the one you remember the most (regardless of their actual contribution).
sergey wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 9:26 am
Upgrading main characters is what makes Legend of the Invincibles so popular.
Personal opinion, but what made it popular was because of customisation of options (AMLA, Gears and probably consumable items that grant different effects) and overpowered ("hero" type) units?

Some units aren’t main characters, but they can get stronger than the main character.
sergey wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 9:26 am
I wrote that in the beginning of my first post "Early finish bonus gives points, which may be used to upgrade main characters."
I saw, and I thought that it’ll branch out to non leaders later on.

I wanted to ensure your stance on point restriction and what you’ll do, when it got to that point.

I’m looking if your proposal has contradicting implementations, potential problems and how you’ll probably solve them.

Basically, I prefer if your work gets more input (vision) on the acceptable modifications.
sergey wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 9:26 am
There is an always available minor upgrade with increasing cost,
Actually this was one of my main concerns if they didn’t have point increase and if applied (without limitations) to resistances, move speed and additional hits.

While I like having fast move speed, I hope that minor upgrades won’t include "unlimited" move speed. The same probably goes for attack and especially on resistances, as it allows direct damage reduction.
sergey wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 9:26 am
P.S. You are welcome to try it too. You may find more ideas after playing :)
I’ll look into it when I have free time. :hmm:

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by sergey » November 4th, 2019, 12:31 am

Tad_Carlucci wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 4:41 pm
Another thing I was thinking of was a FIFO buffer for points. Prior to the UI to spend points, this scene has a limit (default 3 or so) scenes back from which it will accept points. Older points are permanently removed. Points expended from the UI are removed from the oldest slot first. This needs some thinking, though, because we want the player to know on THIS scene that a given number of points must be expended or they will be lost on the NEXT scene.
Why do you want to remove old unused points? I don't see any negative effect they may cause.
Elvish_Hunter wrote:
November 3rd, 2019, 5:13 pm
In some add-ons I found this icon being used, that at least looks decent and will work until a better one is added to mainline.
Thanks, I will use this icon :)
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Created The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) version of the mainline campaign.

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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by Tad_Carlucci » November 4th, 2019, 1:51 pm

To prevent hoarding from early scenes when you know you're gonna get a really nice new member in a couple more, or that the only viable unit to spend them on is going to leave you in a few.
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Re: The Rise of Wesnoth (alternative mechanics) UMC add-on for 1.14

Post by otzenpunk » November 4th, 2019, 4:46 pm

sergey wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 10:51 am
[*]Gold carryover is 5% - 10% instead of 40%. Starting gold is increased. This is done to improve balance.
I see why you did that, but I think this would remove any incentive from the game to keep an eye on your treasury. With the regular gold carryover, I see basically three different economical strategies:

1. Go heavy: Spend all your money to recall/recruit as many of your best units as possible. Although you might go heavily into gold negativity, you're going to finish the scenario as fast as possible and your early finishing bonus will hopefully more than offset your debt and provide you with a reasonable carryover.
2. Go light. Don't overrecruit and maintain a balance between income and maintaining costs. This means, you probably don't recall all your high-levels, but rely on cheaper level 1 fodder to a higher extent, maybe even don't spend a certain amount of your money at all, but rather keep some in your pocket to pay upkeep costs in the early turns. As a result, it might take a little bit longer to finish than with variant 1, but you get to keep more of your finishing bonus, because you don't have to even out your banking account first.
3. Heavily restrain yourself. Just recruit a couple of units and start earning money early on to maximize your carryover to the next scenario.

With a reduced carryover to 5% or 10%, which means effectively, that 90% or 95% of your money is just thrown out of the window at the end of the scenario, I would expect that basic strategic decision you have to make at the beginning of each scenario is gonna be removed, because everything else except variant1 doesn't provide you any benefit any more. It's just economically not sane to save a comparably awful lot of money just to maybe get a single more unit in the next scenario, and your point system does its own to discourage you from any cautious approaches.

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