Author Topic: Another balance thread  (Read 3273 times)

Offline Slow

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2022, 07:54:32 pm »
Shotgun shotgun shooting slugs is better as a rifle than Hunting rifle. It's ridicolous.

Offline Juku121

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2022, 08:38:18 pm »
Uh, not really. You'd need 150+ accuracy to get the same snap shot accuracy at 25 tiles, and 500+ :o for equally-accurate aimed shots at vision range (40 tiles). The shotgun is a bit harder-hitting and can be considerably more accurate at shorter ranges, but that's not being 'better as a rifle'. Never mind that the Shotgun shotgun is something like ar least one full tier harder to access.

SS also can't fire thrice per round like the HR maneuvered into a good shooting position can. You need the BO shotgun for that.

There's plenty strange stuff in the balancing, and shotguns kinda are too precise once your soldiers agents start hitting higher firing accuracy values, but lets not just invent problems out of whole cloth, m'kay?
« Last Edit: October 01, 2022, 08:43:16 pm by Juku121 »

Offline termidor

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #17 on: October 01, 2022, 09:31:39 pm »
Yeah I don't think shotguns are overshadowing Hr as the reason lay above. I would also add that I find slugs inferior to BS rounds against most early enemy due to then lacking armour, and only using slugs more oftenly with the CAWS which is a more advanced weapon.

Offline unarmed drifter

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2022, 09:58:08 pm »
Xenonauts solved the shotgun quite elegantly - it had accuracy AND damage drop

Offline termidor

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #19 on: October 01, 2022, 10:06:01 pm »
Yeah I think damage dropoff  would be a very nice addition to some weapons - after all the energy carry by a bullet, or even by a super-hot plasma bolt is not going to be the same at 5m than at 100m. Ofc that distances in Xcom are wonky, but it would be good as an additional balance parameter.

Offline Juku121

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #20 on: October 01, 2022, 10:10:16 pm »
And for once, that is one thing that's actually doable in OXCE!

Back when I tried making my own spin on v0.4 or so, I think I gave almost all weapons a dropoff that made them go from full power to zero from max range to 2x max range. Of course, not all vanilla XCF weapons have a max range, but it was reasonably easy to implement and made weapon range differences really matter.

Offline mikKoi

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2022, 11:42:08 pm »
And for once, that is one (damage dropoff) thing that's actually doable in OXCE!

I've been wondering as a modder, is this for weapons or ammo (which have the actual power value)?

Offline Juku121

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2022, 11:57:58 pm »
Ammo. Doesn't seem to work on weapons.

Offline BDoubleDs

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2022, 10:13:43 am »
As to the tech tree search, making a full 2D tech tree is pretty much impossible (at least if humans are supposed to read it). There are third-party tools to show you snippets of it, and the in-game browser does show you the prerequisites and unlocks pretty well, and allows you to hyperlink yourself to what you need with passable efficiency. I think most mod devs consider the tech tree viewer a sort of cheat anyway, and would say that a 'new inexperienced user' should keep away from it. Honestly, a 'new inexperienced user' should actually keep away from any and all megamods as well. :P

Yeah totally.  I mean i get it, like us hardcore players want that sense of discovery in this mod like we had in the original xcom as we figured out what tech paths were important and what werent.  The difference is the OG game only had around 50 different techs to figure out.  so learning the tree as our 10 year old selves wasn't too daunting.  however this game literally thousands of techs.   At a certain point you HAVE to give the players some leeway when its changes this drastically.  I believe this calls for that.  I'm also not asking for much, just a filter like what already exists in the 'what can be researched' screen.

 Something that allows the user to say 'hey. i feel like im falling behind in xcom vehicles... what should i be looking for' and they navigate to the xcom vehicles tech portion.  as it stands now, unless i know the specific names of the vehicles i cant figure out what tech paths to take without looking at a wiki.  so the search is useless unless i already know what to look for.  For example, unless i know the name of the katsuni vehicle... im not going to be able to search for that using the current system.  however if there was a category breakdown like in the UFOPedia of 'xcom vehicles' and Katsuni was next in the list after humvee.  I could work toward that.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2022, 10:21:13 am by BDoubleDs »

Offline Juku121

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #24 on: October 02, 2022, 10:38:21 am »
Something that allows the user to say 'hey. i feel like im falling behind in xcom vehicles... what should i be looking for' and they navigate to the xcom vehicles tech portion.  as it stands now, unless i know the specific names of the vehicles i cant figure out what tech paths to take without looking at a wiki.
Well, lemme try.

Hmmm, I want some new vehicles. What got me the van (or which of the small handful gives me the van)? Logistics. Check it out. Look, Humvees! And flight training... Wonder what that leads to... Oh, helicopters! And more helicopters! And 'advanced' flight! And...

Suppose I feel a lack of armour instead. Personal Protection -> Kevlar Vest -> Armoured Vest -> Heavy Tac Suit -> Heavy Trit Suit <- Cyber Armour <- Personal Armour. And HTS -> AS -> PS.

Weapon choice you're usually extremely spoiled for and, as this thread attests to, merely looking at the name or stats will not tell you if it's any better than what you've got now.

If I have zero clue, looking at what gets unlocked by Promotion X is also a good start.

So, essentially, if you know how to browse the web, you also know how to browse an X-Com megamod. ;D

For example, unless i know the name of the katsuni vehicle... im not going to be able to search for that using the current system.  however if there was a category breakdown like in the UFOPedia of 'xcom vehicles' and Katsuni was next in the list after humvee.  I could work toward that.
Not a very compelling example because... How? Ultimately, the tech browser will tell you you need (other). Which is actually a red herring since it's just there for technical reasons. So the Kitsune comes down to either being able to research it because you've got the prereq unlocked via an event, or not being able to figure out how to get it at all, at least based on the tech browser.



Of course, such a tech filter would not be particularly bad, to the contrary, it'd be at least a minor improvement. But in order to get it, you need to go back to a developer instead of Solarius and wrangle it out of them. Risking getting the tech browser getting taken out altogether in the process.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2022, 10:42:46 am by Juku121 »

Offline BDoubleDs

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #25 on: October 02, 2022, 11:40:52 am »
Well, lemme try.

Hmmm, I want some new vehicles. What got me the van (or which of the small handful gives me the van)? Logistics. Check it out. Look, Humvees! And flight training... Wonder what that leads to... Oh, helicopters! And more helicopters! And 'advanced' flight! And...

i definitely get your point but the tech tree doesn't actually work like that, which is why i feel like it needs a tree.  continuing with the vehicle examples, they don't naturally branch from car to chooper to humvee etc.   car to chopper sure.  but you gotta get full military consultant which requires all network research before the humvee.  it kind of makes logical sense but also doesn't for a new player.

Offline Juku121

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #26 on: October 02, 2022, 11:57:14 am »
Well, now you're talking about requirements when previously it was all about finding out what (or where) the next vehicle or whatever was. A filter will not help you find out what you need to get the Military Envoy.

A tree will only work in small doses, like what you get from the XCF wiki. I imagine you can ask for that functionality to be added to OXCE. I also imagine your chances of getting that request granted (especially due to needing new and highly scalable UI) are virtually nil.

it kind of makes logical sense but also doesn't for a new player.
If someone is that new, maybe they shouldn't jump straight into overcomplicated megamods? :P
« Last Edit: October 02, 2022, 11:59:50 am by Juku121 »

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #27 on: October 02, 2022, 01:59:30 pm »
Eh, if you want to have a discussion, sure, I'll play along. I'm a sucker for a good argument.

Well, it's kind of my job... ;)

(Even though I'm down with a cold and shouldn't work. I can bqarely see, so I'll be brief and we can go back to this later.)

We both know nothing will change, neither the mod's balancing nor my opinion of it.

I don't think it's that bad. :P

This would be an argument in D&D, perhaps.

It's not only a game reason, but it's a strong component.

IRL, all sword-like edged weapons are difficult to use, especially for beginners (because edge alignment is hard under duress). I could see all mainly slashing weapons (so not knives nor giant twohanders) get the 0-200 treatment, but drawing an arbitrary line between one slab of sharpened metal and another... ??? Especially when a Billhook (the gardening tool, not the polearm!) is 50-150%.

It's a pretty complicatd thing; I haven't read any classical treaties on fencing from the Middle Ages, but I read quite a bit of secondary material and I know what you mean. The difference is mostly between thrusting and hewing and how I tried to match it to X-Com mechanics (mostly out of my ass, but hey, real martial arts vs. game mechanics).

Says the man making a sharp border between two rather similar bolt-action guns. And, BTW, there are rather sharp borders between different types of weapons IRL. E.g. you will never have an SMG cross over into a purely rifle role (600 meter potshots, for example) because a handgun cartridge has its limits. Even if you put a metre of barrel on the SMG and screw in into a vise.

Which one do you mean? The MP-5? If yes, then TBH I should split the SMG category in two - one-handed machine pistols and two-handed, umm, I don't know how they're called in English - small carbines with pistol ammo. The very fact that they are in one category was a mistake, born of the existence of "SMG" as a term in English, which made me overlook this obvious issue.

Sharp borders are supposed to reflect some kind of inherent advantage. In the case of sniper rifles, the biggest difference should be the optics. Which would neatly explain the difference between the HR and the BA. There are even scoped hunting rifle sprites floating around.

In XCF, the difference in mechanics is normal formula vs. squared formula. How it relates to real-life fuzziness is a matter of interpretation - or just winging it, because for example I wanted an early weapon with a squared formula.

No, similar weapons should work similarly. All GPMGs and LMGs have relatively similar rates of fire IRL, both mechanically and doctrinally. (...)

I don't think the MP-5 and the Mac are very similar. See my previous remarks on the SMG category - I basically agree.

I think that's a jab at the .308 sniper rifle. That gun makes your bullets veer towards what you're shooting at depending on how much chutzpah you have.

Ah, that!
I have no bloody idea why I made it so, it was done literally last decade. I'll ask Dioxine if it was his idea, maybe he'll remember.
Good question, actually.

Because IRL, getting any thrown weapon to hit and 'stick' is an exercise in frustration even under range conditions.

Sorry, what do you mean by "stick"? I don't get the usage of this word, so I'm skipping this entire section until it's rephrased. Do you mean "stuck in the body"?

Hitting something with a rock is far more difficult than shooting them.

I find it debatable - homo sapiens evolved specifically to throw stuff (rather than say, melee - that would be Neanderthals), and not to shoot with guns; on a short distance anyway. Also, throwing and firing are different skills which vary between people. But I've never fired a gun, so I'm not pushing anything here.

I will guarantee that if you pick a dozen random grunts, policemen, FBI agents, etc, they will be an order of magnitude better with rifles, sniper or not, short range or long, than hitting people with throwing knives at 50 paces.

Well, do they train throwing?

Now, you can of course make unrealistic throwing weapons for gameplay purposes. But in that case, the argument is not "what's wrong?", because there's plenty wrong. The argument is "Do you want cool throwing weapons or not?". Some people do, some do not.

I still don't know why it's "wrong". I know plenty of games with a similar realism level using such mechanics, for example UFO: Aftershock (where thrown weapons reigned supreme) or even Piratez (same mechanics after all). And I can't remember anyone complaining to Okim.

And all the while, people's expectations get subverted because the in-game throwing weapons behave completely differently from how you'd expect them to, with nary an explanation. Even though you could have 'field manual' article saying these are 'rule of cool' weapons.

They work exactly how I expected them to do so, based on my experience as a gamer and also some (minimal) real experience with throwing. :P

And even then, they're so good compared to the competition it's ridiculous. It's the 'Rookies, forget about rifles, grab all the grenades you can! That Sectoid two screens over needs killing!" all over again.

Umm, this is X-Com, remember? I nerfed grenades as much as I reasonably could...

How you complicate your life is your business. What matters is how your efforts translate into the game.

Frankly it's mostly you who make my life complicated. Not even any other player. And also you should learn basic courtesy to people who make shit for you for free - typically of you, this sentence was so incredibly patronizing even though you could probably be my son, not to mention I can't see take you seriously as a creator of anything. I don't get why you continue to take such a high stand like you were my mentor or something, so don't ever do this again.

As long as a handgun can outshoot an LMG at 30 tiles, a bolt action fires faster than a semi-auto PSG-1 and people shoot miniguns without power armour, I am not seeing any sort of 'balance' in the game. It's all made up on the spot, inherited from the OG or outsourced to Dioxine, with little done to reconcile the differences.

I never felt the need to "reconcile the differences", whatever that means. If you don't like it, play something else. I'm trying to be reasonable and rethink stuff if people tell me to, but if you say it's all garbage then up yours.

Which shows that the basic balance of a lot of weapons is not taken from Piratez... how exactly? I'm not saying everything is literally copy-pasted, but the influence and the similarities in design philosophy are obvious.

So are you saying that the balance is the same or different? Or that the overall philosophy is the same but particulars differ?

It's inspired by Piratez making melee viable and a central part of the game.

Are you fucking blind or what? I just said it's not because of Piratez.

So you also wanted to have the same, even if you didn't want to have the exact same effect.

...what?

Why reinvent the wheel and all that.

This sentence had nothing to do with melee specifically. Quoting my words out of context again. This is the last warning, I will not put up with this.

Pistol sniping was brought up, and you resisted any change, going "It's fine; don't use pistols if you don't like them; find a pistol you like and stick with it; I have no issues with them; no weapon tiers in this game." Until it became abundantly clear how silly the end result was.
It was the path of least resistance, taught to players repeatedly over early apprehension missions. No wonder they learned to rely on pistol potshots. Because it worked.

Yeah, my point being that as a player I would not do that (immersion is more important than efficiency to me), so I didn't foresee others to do so and later downplayed it.

Yes, exactly what I said earlier. Nobody, not Solarius, not Dioxine, not 8mono, not Eddie, not me, nobody, has the mental and physical endurance to do this.

Actually a lot of people do, but they prefer to make their own mods.

Besides, to me guns are boring. They aren't exciting - you press the trigger, a bullet comes out. Boring.

For me, from the player's perspective, the actual fun comes from tactical combat itself. From the modder's perspective, it's writing.

Inb4 you ask "then why so many different guns?", my answer is "more is better". More guns means more fluff, more bling, more texts, and sometimes even more tactics.

So the balance is what it is and it's up to the players to find their sweet spot in it (or fail and play other mods/games). Perhaps tweak some data that seems excessively strange if that helps.

Of course, I occasionally do the same with other mods and games.

And I meant as a submod, if done by a different person. Like Eddie did.

Sure, submods are a good approach.

In theory, the Light Cannon is a shotgun, unlike a sniper rifle. Takes about a turn and carrying extra ammo to make it into one, though. And it kinda sucks compared to other shotguns when you can't make the alien eat the barrel first. :(

I think the actual issue might be lack of sufficiently tough enemies to let the LC shine. DB is usually sufficient, and the Trasher is a thing.

Finally, yeah, the fact that a bullet from a .300 or maybe even a .400 caliber sniper rifle (and not an AM rifle!) has about the same damage and armour penetration as a literal hand cannon is a typical example of XCF balance. Which is all over the place.

...what is wrong with that?

That's not a coherent argument. Switchblades and Shivs(...)

I hope I addressed your points in my reply to Juku. Is this satisfactory enough?

Admittedly, I don't understand parts your post, because it's too technical for my health bar right now.

I think that problem is that Sniper Rifles and Cannons deals the same type of damage (KINETIC), while realistically they should deal different type of damage.

What else would it do, laser???

OK, seriously: you want me to make several damage types depending on the bullet? That would mean we'd also have several different types for different kinds of laser. And at least 10 types of Chem damage. And so on. (And the limit is 20 damage types, of which we are already using 16.)

But, when I told that Sniper Rifles are overpowered, Solarius disagreed.

I still find them rather situational, and it took some serious work to make them viable in the first place. X-Com focuses on close combat, yet I wanted to have sniper rifles in it, which required a lot of tweaking.

IDK, sniper rifles and cannons do have a similar damage mechanic (high-energy kinetic impact). It's just, well, logically a cannon should go through a lot harder stuff than even an anti-material rifle. Armour, Silacoids, tanks, buildings...

Why?

Seriously, I just read how he said swords require less skill to use than knives because why else did people invent them? ::)

Spoiler"Swords":
People invented swords because they had also invented something called a warrior class that could waste years on personal weapon training, and the people they tended to use swords on were usually poorly armoured, not because swords are easy to use. Well, that and a sword is expensive and the warrior class needed a status symbol, too. A sword is probably the worst melee weapon to hand to a complete newbie.

Swords are indeed harder to use than knives (barring having longer reach which is very important; I consider knives to be easier to use in a 1-on-1 combat where both sides have the same weapon). Also, a sword is not a martial weapon, it's a ceremonial weapon which was meant for dueling and as a status symbol, not sometrhing to be actually used in battle (at least the" longsword" type; a lot of weapons fall under a "sword" category, including falchions, sabres and other stuff I don't know English names for). But I assume people who talk about weapons know such basics. It's rather off-topic though.[/quote]

Edit: I suppose the best way to put the situation is, there is no reasoning with Solarius. Either you bring up a point and he agrees with it, or he doesn't. Perhaps he'll change his mind later, perhaps not. Can't really cast too many stones here, I am not entirely innocent of this myself. :-[

Thisd is not what "cannot be reasoned with" means. What you described is how normal social interaction works, which you seem to be in a dire need to practice.

Lots of people find the mod fun with the current balance, including the author, and that's ultimately what counts. We nitpickers might wish otherwise, but we could also wish for Gollop to make a proper sequel instead of taking Epic's money and making XCOM2 with free aim, a couple extra action points and OP murdercrabs. And basically ignoring any and all feedback, to the point his own appointed 'community council' people publicly lambasted him. Solarius is in good company (except for that Epic cash). :P

I honestly appreciate that!

Offline termidor

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #28 on: October 02, 2022, 03:45:58 pm »
I hope I addressed your points in my reply to Juku. Is this satisfactory enough?

Admittedly, I don't understand parts your post, because it's too technical for my health bar right now.


I honestly  don't know if you are trolling me or something of that vein when discussing with you. Don't get me wrong, I do think that your mod and the love given to it  is excellent  and it is peak gaming overall, but when I'm giving nonsensical  arguments to  (in my eyes) fair criticism , it is just vexing. Like why can't all melee weapons use the same formula? It would lead to a more consistent  experience  and make balancing much more straightforward. Current criteria seems to be completely arbitrary and I can't see a benefit in having some weapons being less consistent  than others.



I find it debatable - homo sapiens evolved specifically to throw stuff (rather than say, melee - that would be Neanderthals), and not to shoot with guns; on a short distance anyway. Also, throwing and firing are different skills which vary between people. But I've never fired a gun, so I'm not pushing anything here.
This argument doesn't  make sense at all. Do we see modern militaries use throwing knifes as backups or use handguns? And regardless, why bring some natural state argument when history shows the limits of thrown weapons.

Well, do they train throwing?
That's exactly  the problem with the current accuracy formula with thrown weapons- that with no that much training,you get a weapon that hits likes a truck and always hit. A pistol 5 titles away may miss half of his shoots from a 70 acc soldier. Throwing Knifes from 5 titles away will hit close to 100 of the time. Given thrown weapons sniper rifles accuracy  formulas would be a big improvement.  And to be clear , it's  not a matter to make them not effective weapons, is that they are too dominat with very little training.You can currently do some crazy things with Melee weapons for example but you need a trained agent, I don't see why thrown direct hit weapons can't be similar.



Yeah, my point being that as a player I would not do that (immersion is more important than efficiency to me), so I didn't foresee others to do so and later downplayed it.


Maybe this is the crux of the issue that we play differently ? So the LC with BS shells seem fine but if you want to be more efficient it seems like a bad choice.


For me, from the player's perspective, the actual fun comes from tactical combat itself. From the modder's perspective, it's writing.


 
Yeah I kinda of agree with this statement,  I do modding in other games (paradox games) and in a team we may have different preferences,  same for the player's. That being said my concerns related mostly to making tactical combat better.


I think the actual issue might be lack of sufficiently tough enemies to let the LC shine. DB is usually sufficient, and the Trasher is a thing.
 
I faced some Vampire knigths in a police monster raid in the first year  (without Promo III )and sniper rifles proved much more useful  against then than a LC. Well the real MC where incendiary  grenades to sap their morale, but even against tougher enemies there are better alternatives.  Also I didn't compare it to the TRSH due to weigth, but that's  indeed the most awesome shotgun 😎

I still find them rather situational, and it took some serious work to make them viable in the first place. X-Com focuses on close combat, yet I wanted to have sniper rifles in it, which required a lot of tweaking.


I find then very dominant , not only on spawn that are far away but as well in more medium ranges encounters bc there are always some priority enemies that need to be taken, and the high damage with guaranteed hitting is a deadly combo.


Swords are indeed harder to use than knives (barring having longer reach which is very important; I consider knives to be easier to use in a 1-on-1 combat where both sides have the same weapon). Also, a sword is not a martial weapon, it's a ceremonial weapon which was meant for dueling and as a status symbol, not sometrhing to be actually used in battle (at least the" longsword" type; a lot of weapons fall under a "sword" category, including falchions, sabres and other stuff I don't know English names for). But I assume people who talk about weapons know such basics. It's rather off-topic though.
  Do you find knifes useful  with untrained agents? Also that knifes are used by enemies as well. I'm not going to go about how swords ain't ceremonial,  or how even ceremonial weapons are somehow ineffective,  but knifes being easier to use than swords not only make sense from a gameplay sense, but also from a logical standpoint.


BTW thanks for the effort writing the answers,  I know it takes time and effort  but I appreciate  it.

Offline Yankes

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Re: Another balance thread
« Reply #29 on: October 02, 2022, 04:29:39 pm »
Also, a sword is not a martial weapon, it's a ceremonial weapon
No, sword ARE martial weapons, even at some point a battle weapon, only advent of full plate armors make them lost this role.
Ceremonial aspect of sword now is more a side effect of its original usage that reason they exists.