Author Topic: Hybrid game  (Read 24488 times)

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Hybrid game
« on: February 05, 2014, 10:10:32 am »
Many people request a "hybrid game" by combining elements of UFO: Enemy Unknown and TFTD. In my opinion, the only way it'd work would be to make a complete merge of these games, also on the level of mechanics and storyline. Basically:
  • When a UFO is shot over water, it isn't destroyed; you can recover it with Aquanauts.
  • X-Com has both aircraft and subs. Only subs can go on underwater missions, but they can't fly (it's 1999 after all). Therefore you need separate underwater bases for the subs.
  • TFTD aliens and UFOs probably wouldn't fly, they're just navy. Otherwise some aliens (Tentaculats, Hallucinoids etc.) would die if the UFO crashes on land.
  • What about the ending - would you go for Cydonia, T'leth, or both? This needs to be decided/planned.

To sum up, I'd absolutely love the idea, but it would be quite demanding. Still, I think it's perfectly doable by our team.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2014, 02:54:11 pm by Solarius Scorch »

Offline yrizoud

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2014, 01:32:48 pm »
Non-flying subs would require some pathfinding to navigate (ah-ha) around landmasses. In terms of game, it would be a very radical change, for example America is a huge obstacle between Atlantic and Pacific. Also since the game interface has a limit of 6 bases, you'd have no more than 4 aquatic bases to patrol the entire world...

A big challenge would be for the game engine to handle (and distinguish) both bases facilities. It's an issue that's completely avoided by having different rulesets for the two different games.

Offline kkmic

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2014, 03:32:40 pm »
Why having a hybrid game?

The games share some similarity, but only to some extent. They are different. I'd rather play them one at a time than having a hybrid.

Offline Minotaton

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2014, 05:30:24 pm »
I would rather see them one after the other. Complete the first game then merge into TFTD with parts of UFO carried over. Start with soldiers from UFO or something like that.

Offline yrizoud

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2014, 05:57:58 pm »
TFTD is happening 40 years after UFO. Also, the Avenger that raided Cydonia, with your elite soldiers... it didn't come back. The desperate mission didn't account for a ticket back to Earth.
edit: Sorry about that, false memories. Did I get Alien abducted?
« Last Edit: February 05, 2014, 08:13:00 pm by yrizoud »

Offline shinr

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2014, 06:47:11 pm »
On the contrary, the Avenger did came back, and was used a few more times in the failed attempts to find Elerium on Mars before being mothballed as a museum piece.

As for the soldiers, well, 40 years will take its toll on anyone even with the improvements in medicine, and personally I think that whatever was left of X-COM after the First Alien War neither had the influence or the resources to arrange for soldiers to be put into the cold sleep.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2014, 06:49:04 pm »
Non-flying subs would require some pathfinding to navigate (ah-ha) around landmasses. In terms of game, it would be a very radical change, for example America is a huge obstacle between Atlantic and Pacific. Also since the game interface has a limit of 6 bases, you'd have no more than 4 aquatic bases to patrol the entire world...

A big challenge would be for the game engine to handle (and distinguish) both bases facilities. It's an issue that's completely avoided by having different rulesets for the two different games.

Yeah. They are obstacles, but I think they're not only surmountable by the community (and especially our very talented coders), but also would provide more fun for the players. Your first base location is an important question; it would be even more complicated with a naval base. (The Pacific seems to be the obvious choice, but would you really abandon Europe and the Middle East?)

Why having a hybrid game?

The games share some similarity, but only to some extent. They are different. I'd rather play them one at a time than having a hybrid.

I fully understand. However, these "hybrid games" have been a recurring theme for 20 years, most prominently in the X-Com Util, and people played it. So I thought, if it exists, it should be made properly. :) Hence my initial thoughts on how to merge not only the games' resources, but also their logic.

I would rather see them one after the other. Complete the first game then merge into TFTD with parts of UFO carried over. Start with soldiers from UFO or something like that.

Yes, but this actually creates some logical problems. See below:

TFTD is happening 40 years after UFO. Also, the Avenger that raided Cydonia, with your elite soldiers... it didn't come back. The desperate mission didn't account for a ticket back to Earth.

Even if it were true, what about the other ten Avengers you left back in your bases? :) What about heavy plasma guns? Power suits? Blaster bombs? Even if some of these technologies won't work underwater, there are still land missions (terror). I know TFTD handwaved it by saying that there's no more Elerium to power these things, but it wouldn't apply to everything, for example Alien Alloys.
Yes, TFTD takes place 40 years later (I thought it was 60, but I'm not sure). And well, the T'leth arc would have to be moved much faster, to the first alien war, and somehow fitted into the plot. Still, these are technical issues, as many people simply want to play hybrid games and they will anyway, so, as I said, let's give them some way to do it properly, without too much suspension of disbelief.
Basically we would have to add elements from TFTD to the basic game, balance them properly (weapons, aliens) and think of a way to tie these stories together. I'm not a huge fan of hybrid games, but I still think it would be very interesting to say the least.

Offline yrizoud

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2014, 08:11:32 pm »
My mistake, I thought I had read it on Ufopedia (somewhere in the timeline information), but I can't find anything like this now. I either read a fan theory or completely misunderstood something.
edit: I just found my error, I read it in the ending of TFTD :
Quote
the aquanauts set off a chain reaction that destroys the alien colony ship just as it is rising above the surface of the water. All the aquanauts aboard are killed, but in dying they ensure the safety of the people of Earth.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2014, 08:20:49 pm by yrizoud »

Offline AndO3131

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2014, 03:57:10 pm »
Quote
Still, these are technical issues, as many people simply want to play hybrid games and they will anyway, so, as I said, let's give them some way to do it properly, without too much suspension of disbelief.
In my opinion, the biggest achievement of OpenXcom project is giving people freedom of choice: they can make the game as hard or as twisted as they want ;D. Hybrid game is in my opinion worth investing quite a lot of time and effort to get it done. Think of it as another mod: you don't have to use it if you don't want to.

As for logical stuff, my thoughts are:
  • Game starts on 1999. X-Com has access to ground facilities only. Underwater facilities are researchable and then buildable (with two kinds of bases - 8 each? 7 each?).
  • After some time (nine months? half a year? based on difficulty?) aliens start to send subs and in general X-Com fights on two fronts.
  • Non flying subs would be very fun to see, but it could be quite difficult to implement. Regardless of that, some weapons would't work on land or sea, or would have decreased accuracy, power, etc. Soldiers could't go on underwater mission.
  • As for the ending, you would go for both - of course in different crafts.

Offline yrizoud

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2014, 05:27:16 pm »
Aquatic aliens (and crafts and weapons) can work both on land (terror missions) and underwater.
Similarly, an XCOM-2 team can operate both on land and underwater.
So I think it's a bit weird if you try to add to TFTD an element that can only operate on one of them :
- space aliens would get very vulnerable while over an ocean. An XCOM sub can down the UFO and let the aliens drown, recover the UFO easily ?
- Why even manage an XCOM-1 team (skyranger, soldiers without diving suits, non-aquatic weapons) if an aquatic team can do the same things and more ?

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2014, 12:12:49 am »
- space aliens would get very vulnerable while over an ocean. An XCOM sub can down the UFO and let the aliens drown, recover the UFO easily ?
- Why even manage an XCOM-1 team (skyranger, soldiers without diving suits, non-aquatic weapons) if an aquatic team can do the same things and more ?

Fair points. Frankly, I don't know how to solve this problem yet... Give UFO aliens spherical glass helmets? :)

Offline AndO3131

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2014, 03:46:44 pm »
I've got a few ideas:
  • X-Com subs (possibly alien subs too) can be limited to reach very low altitude over land - this way they can't be used to intercept flying UFOs. Skyranger is still necessary.
  • aquanauts wouldn't be different kind of soldier. Instead, player can research and buy?manufacture? new kind of armor (lets call it Aquasuit for the moment). This would basically be standard aquanaut suit, but soldier wearing it can go on underwater mission

Offline moriarty

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2014, 03:59:00 pm »
different kinds of armor don't sound like a good idea to me... what if some of the soldiers in your craft have waterproof armor and others don't? if you go on an underwater mission, half of your team dies?

I guess it would be better if there is some point in the game at which the underwater aliens show up, and you have to research "subaquatic warfare" - once you research that, you can go on underwater missions. all soldiers are waterproofed after that.

the only question remains whether all soldiers should also be automatically equipped with basic TFTD armor for surface missions... or whether they dress for the occasion en-route.

Offline Mr. Quiet

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2014, 06:41:40 pm »
Separate the 2 game styles into 2 bases, one TFTD/Deepsea, and the other UD/Underground.

  • TFTD tech in Deepsea base will have the greatest advantage in the sea with no surface type weapons or tech available to buy, sell, research, or manufacture
  • UD tech in underground base will have the greatest advantage in the surface with no deepsea type weapons or tech available to buy, sell, research, or manufacture.

Besides that, you won't have any other limitations, and you will be able to transfer weapons and tech between bases if you feel the need to do so. You're paying for it.

Any UFO flying into the ocean will be recovered by Aquanauts as soon as they dispatch any defending TFTD alien attempting to recover the UFO. These missions will be harder, as you'll have to enter both enemy crafts (UFO and sub). The focus on Aquanauts deepsea tech will be worth it so you can keep them in the sea mission, while the Xenonauts underground will handle all surface missions, including TFTD surfaced missions.

The reason Aquanauts will have to enter the Space UFO is because, the UFO upon touching water, activates an emergency mechanism that attempts to bandage any hull damage that will bring water into the ship. I was thinking you'll be able to breach those weaker alloy spots, but then water will rush in killing all the aliens anyway... So just go in through the entrance.

To make sure we understand this is a co-operative effort, money will be shared. So double the income and you decide which base gets what and when.

Sorry I haven't had time to read this thread, but I have read past ideas about merging both games when I had time :)

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Hybrid game
« Reply #14 on: February 08, 2014, 10:00:07 pm »
different kinds of armor don't sound like a good idea to me... what if some of the soldiers in your craft have waterproof armor and others don't? if you go on an underwater mission, half of your team dies?

Not really; you just can't load non-aquatic troops onto a Triton, that's it. Mr. Quiet's ideas are supporting/expanding this idea.

I guess it would be better if there is some point in the game at which the underwater aliens show up, and you have to research "subaquatic warfare" - once you research that, you can go on underwater missions. all soldiers are waterproofed after that.

Not necessarily; you can, but you don't have to assign sealed armour. I just had a mid-December mission with some Personal Armours, as I suddenly ran out of Power Suits.

Still, I fully agree with aquatic aliens appearing later, when you already have some tech discovered. After all, they're mostly tougher. :)

the only question remains whether all soldiers should also be automatically equipped with basic TFTD armor for surface missions... or whether they dress for the occasion en-route.

I think it depends on armour. You can send aquatic troops on land missions, why not, but I imagine these armours to suffer some penalties due to being unsuited to land movement (negative TUs come to mind; this can already be implemented in the game, Dioxine's Piratez! mod uses it).

Separate the 2 game styles into 2 bases, one TFTD/Deepsea, and the other UD/Underground.

  • TFTD tech in Deepsea base will have the greatest advantage in the sea with no surface type weapons or tech available to buy, sell, research, or manufacture
  • UD tech in underground base will have the greatest advantage in the surface with no deepsea type weapons or tech available to buy, sell, research, or manufacture.

Besides that, you won't have any other limitations, and you will be able to transfer weapons and tech between bases if you feel the need to do so. You're paying for it.

Okay. Still, we need to think which non-TFTD tech would work underwater and how; for example, explosives should work fine, motion scanners would probably require some tuning, and plasma weapons may not work at all as intended, if we decide so.

Any UFO flying into the ocean will be recovered by Aquanauts as soon as they dispatch any defending TFTD alien attempting to recover the UFO. These missions will be harder, as you'll have to enter both enemy crafts (UFO and sub). The focus on Aquanauts deepsea tech will be worth it so you can keep them in the sea mission, while the Xenonauts underground will handle all surface missions, including TFTD surfaced missions.
The reason Aquanauts will have to enter the Space UFO is because, the UFO upon touching water, activates an emergency mechanism that attempts to bandage any hull damage that will bring water into the ship. I was thinking you'll be able to breach those weaker alloy spots, but then water will rush in killing all the aliens anyway... So just go in through the entrance.

This is a bit complicated, since you'll have two UFO's on the same map. Besides, this alien sub would have to come from somewhere, what's keeping you from sinking it en route or just getting to the wreck before them?
I think it would be enough if a UFO which crashes into the sea becomes far too damaged to recover anything of interest; probably just some Alien Alloys and MAYBE some corpses/personal items. Considering it would be later in the game, it wouldn't be terribly attractive anyway (though you'd still do it, I guess). Actually, this process should be automated once you have the tech to do it (sending a Triton to recover an undefended wreck wouldn't be fun).


To make sure we understand this is a co-operative effort, money will be shared. So double the income and you decide which base gets what and when.

Nah, at this stage we really don't need more money. :)