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Author Topic: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?  (Read 7433 times)

Offline Absle

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I'm currently doing a run through for the first time with the Final Mod Pack, and I kinda messed up. A really rookie mistake, I forgot to check where the peak of ufo activity was after the first month and plop down a base accordingly. Now I'm a month behind and things have only rapidly escalated in that region, so my score has suffered a lot. Normally that would be fine, having a bad month wouldn't be so bad. Except that the score I got is ridiculously low: -1410, which can't be right. You only ever get a score that low if you ignore a terror mission. What I think happened was, in the middle of the month, I downed a terror ship but didn't do the ufo recovery mission so the game counted that as an "ignored" terror mission and scored me as such. It's really kind of unfair, and I'm afraid the score will be unrecoverable this coming month. Is there any way to just add 1000 points to my score manually?

Offline Arthanor

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2016, 06:17:43 am »
You're in luck, everything is in the save, which is easy to edit. Just open it with something like notepad.

As far as I can tell, OpenXCom doesn't save actual monthly scores, but your activity and the aliens' for every month of the game. What you can do is go look into your save, find which region you got a terrible score for, and lower the alien activity number for the aliens for that region. I think that should do the trick.

The FMP has a few really nasty missions that you can miss and really suffer from (which it looks like you did). It's not so nice but I guess it's part of the challenge. Since you're in the first month, it's not like it should take particularly long to restart your campaign and benefit from what you learned, or try to tough it out and see how it goes. It's ok to lose, that's XCom ;)

Offline Absle

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2016, 07:28:12 am »
I'm not entirely sure what I'm looking at, do you mean this? https://i.imgur.com/8L7ps4J.png

I really don't understand what format this is using. Some regions have multiple activityxcom / activityAlien lists in them, some have only one or the other, some have entries but all the numbers are 0. Am I even looking in the right place? And holy crap, what could the aliens be doing to Australia that could cause that kind of score? Are they making human-kangaroo hybrids or something?

Offline Arthanor

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2016, 07:47:19 am »
Sorry, I wasn't all that clear (mostly because I'm not all that sure that it is the right way to do it ;) )

But yes, you are looking at what I was looking at. If you pick the region with the worst score and edit those, I suspect that should help.

Note that openxcom is a little bit odd in how it writes saves since it doesn't care about the order of things nor about helping us read the saves and cheat.

When you see:
Code: [Select]
- activityXcom:
      - 0
      - 0
      - 138
      - 0
  type: STR_AUSTRALASIA
  activityAlien:
      - 2
      - 1938
      - 3268
      - 215
That's one entry. Unintuitively, the lines that start with a - are beginning of entries, not the ones that say "type: STR_".

Basically, it's like telling you: "I live at address Y, my name is X and my phone number is Z". It probably makes more sense for a human to say: "My name is X, I live at Y and my phone number is Z". However, for a program  all that matters is the information. So the two are functionally the same.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2016, 10:10:58 am »
That negative value could be caused by an undiscovered MiB base (which looks like a normal landing, a green marker, but lasts very long). Check which region generates high alien activity and patrol it just in case.

Offline Absle

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2016, 07:08:42 pm »
So I just delete the line under the alien score that says 3268 or I just change it to 0?

Offline Arthanor

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2016, 08:11:32 pm »
I'd change it to 0. If there has been 4 months in the game and you only define 3 values for alien activity, it might not be happy. (maybe the default is 100000 ;) although I'd expect it to be 0)

Offline Absle

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2016, 09:01:45 pm »
Awesome, I'll give it a try, thanks for all the help!

Offline Countdown

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2016, 10:25:54 pm »
Different, but related question. How moddable is the scoring? One of the things I'd like to mod is add a high negative score for a failed base defense mission. With vanilla scoring, you actually don't lose any points if aliens destroy your base which seems silly to me.

I can see in the ruleset explanation how you can change the score for alien missions, but I don't see a way to influence the score based on whether you win or lose the mission. I don't want to give the aliens 500 points just for retaliating; only if they win.

Also, ignored terror missions? I know it's like negative 1000 points, but I don't even see where that is defined in the rulesets.

Thanks to anyone that can point me in the right direction.

Offline Arthanor

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2016, 10:34:07 pm »
I believe it is defined here.

You have:

- objectiveComplete: for successfully defending the base/cleaning up the terror site
- objectiveFailer: for failing, which is where you'd add the penalty to base defence
- despawnPenalty: for a site disappearing, like the -X for terror sites.

It's pretty harsh to give a point penalty for losing a base, when losing it is already quite a hit in itself. Maybe the funding council considers that the hit from aliens means that XCom is actually doing its job of getting in the way of the aliens, and thus doesn't decrease XCom's budget?

Offline Countdown

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2016, 01:04:34 am »
I believe it is defined here.

You have:

- objectiveComplete: for successfully defending the base/cleaning up the terror site
- objectiveFailer: for failing, which is where you'd add the penalty to base defence
- despawnPenalty: for a site disappearing, like the -X for terror sites.

Arthanor, thank you for pointing that section out! Turns out I've been looking at an outdated Ruleset page because back when ufopaedia was down I looked the page up on web.archive.org, bookmarked the page, and never updated it when ufopaedia came back online! Face palm moment, haha.

I got it to work with terror missions (I could get positive or negative points for success/failure), however, I'm still not getting the points to apply for base defense. Are you sure they can be used in this way for base defense? Here is my ruleset:

Code: [Select]
alienDeployments:
 - type: STR_BASE_DEFENSE
   objectiveComplete: [STR_TESTING_SUCCESS, 500]
   objectiveFailed: [STR_TESTING_FAIL, -500]

I tried to add objectiveType and objectivesRequired as well (so if you don't clear the aliens, you don't destroy the non-existent object), but that didn't work either. Any ideas?

And something that must be a bug, with the terror missions "objectiveFailed" isn't applied when you lose the mission through a squad wipe, only if you abort mission. I started a thread on it for now to confirm that it is a bug and not intentional.

Quote
It's pretty harsh to give a point penalty for losing a base, when losing it is already quite a hit in itself. Maybe the funding council considers that the hit from aliens means that XCom is actually doing its job of getting in the way of the aliens, and thus doesn't decrease XCom's budget?
Hmm, I didn't think of it like that, so maybe it is harsh. But I think I want it to be harsh. 1) We get 500 pts for destroying an alien base, so they should get something for destroy ours and 2) how are you going to lose the game if aliens can't score points? For me this feeling like I "got away with something" was exacerbated by the fact I didn't get negative points for my 2 craft lost in the base defense so my mission score was positive. I think that is related to the issue I mentioned above and in my thread.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2016, 01:18:05 am by Countdown »

Offline Arthanor

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Re: Is there a way to cheat in an improved meta-score in OpenXCom?
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2016, 03:41:30 am »
I actually have no idea. I have never modded missions, so I wouldn't know. It just seemed like the relevant section to look at. ;)

It does look like you found an oddity with he failed terror, but it might be voluntary too, I don't know. Something like: "You pulled out?! You're supposed to defend Earth you *!%#@*%#", versus: "Well, you did try.. just.. hum.. try harder next time?" when you squad wipe? I don't remember how terrors worked in the original.

Re: harshness:
To me, aliens get points not for facing XCom (they don't really care) but for mutilating cows and abducting people, or converting nations (the stuff they are actually trying to do). Attacking XCom is just them trying to get rid of a thorn in their side, not working towards their main mission. By opposition, XCom only gets points for taking out aliens, because that's what they care about.