aliens

Author Topic: [DONE] [Feedback] [Documentation] Hunter-killer  (Read 26217 times)

Offline Hobbes

  • Commander
  • *****
  • Posts: 3502
  • Infiltration subroutine in progress
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #45 on: September 26, 2017, 11:19:20 pm »
and if you land to rescue them, you must fight the aliens off.

What would be the reasoning behind this? With XCom, yeah, definitely makes sense trying to recover crashed UFOs to get access to the aliens technology, but why would the aliens need to assault a crashed craft full of equipped armed troops when they can simply abduct/harvest civilians?

Map-wise, it would actually be pretty simple to implement both craft and a UFO since you'd only need to adjust the script.

Offline mumble

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 335
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #46 on: September 28, 2017, 07:53:09 am »
 Maybe there should just be 2 parameters for shooting down? JUST shooting down, and trying to extinguish any survivors, as 2 tasks.

I figure in some scenarios, such as piratez, would be mercs might try gunning down and bagging pirates for fame and loot, while xcom UFO's might merely only care about knocking down ships, but have bigger fish to fry than killing all survivors.

also, how would rescue work? I presume if you wipe the attacking aliens, you get everything thats left from being shot down, but what about engagement? Would you have a time limit BEFORE the ufo defense is forced?

I really love the idea of a possible second chance, but the more I think about it, the more problems it would present

Offline Ethereal

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 349
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #47 on: September 30, 2017, 04:22:22 pm »
I propose to implement the attack of X-COM ships in both versions - and in "alienMissions.rul", as a model of UFO behavior, and in "ufos.rul". This will create flexibility in setting up UFO behavior.

Offline SteamXCOM

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 151
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #48 on: October 03, 2017, 05:52:39 pm »
"use anomaly" ?
"ransom from hostile locals on mission abort" ?

I am speechless...

Should I also implement ground staff, so that you can order them to clean toilets?
And maybe also a pizza baking simulator mini-game... to improve soldier morale.
And sex-chat! Every good game needs a built-in sex-chat...

:(  :'(


My description in the previous post  is probably a bit more complex than it needs to be.

The goal I gather is to have an UHK (Unidentified Hunter killer) interception
--The UHK is superior to XCOM craft
--it is an unwinnable encounter inasmuch as the XCOM craft goes

The game already has a "dogfight" interface that faces off XCOM craft against a UFO.

Typically, the player uses the buttons to hammer the UFO until its shot down or presses another button that  breaks off  contact if damage to the XCOM craft is too much.

I gather, we want to take some form of that dogfight interface so the UHK faces off against the XCOM craft.

Typically, with that similar dogfight interface, the player now  uses the buttons to try and instead escape the UHK (because it is superior) until that escape is successful or the XCOM craft is shot down. 

Escape means the XCOM craft has successfully eluded the UHK .

The details of what the buttons might actually do are suggested in the earlier post , however game / programming limitations will of course determine what can be done with them to effect the escape of the XCOM craft or no.

And if a tactical mission results from getting shot down, (maybe 25% of the time) the combat mission map would be displayed with any leftover Xcom survivors.  As earlier described, no aliens, just hostile scavenging locals.  If you win, you carry out your stuff and whatever can be recovered from such defeated locals (ak 47's etc). If you lose, yes you lose all.
 IF you ABORT  for one reason or another:
 -- ransom offer from locals for return of your soldiers: game determines how much  and if you pay  the soldiers  show up some time later at a base
 --or not pay ransom, and you never see them again.
 not sure how ordering Pizza or cleaning toilets could be used in this context,
 however SEXCHAT brings up another possibility...
 ....yes, instead of that; NEGOTIATIONS with locals to get your guys back:
 this is not a minigame but just another option after you click ABORT:
 
 Abort button (in tactical) clicked goes to another screen with the following options
 >cancel (returns to tactical)
 >Pay ransom to locals [$$game displays dollar amount$$$](if selected and if enough money deducted and return to Geoscape, otherwise message appears NOT ENOUGH FUNDS) soldiers(not gear) return to base.
 >Negotiate (if selected game displays $$$ amount which can be as little as half the amount or as much as triple the amount of original ransom)
 >>YES pay Negotiated ransom (if selected and if enough money deducted and return to Geoscape)
 >>NO do not pay negotiated ransom(return to Geoscape)
 >abandon soldiers (return to geoscape)

Offline Countdown

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 250
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #49 on: October 06, 2017, 05:56:02 am »
What would be the reasoning behind this? With XCom, yeah, definitely makes sense trying to recover crashed UFOs to get access to the aliens technology, but why would the aliens need to assault a crashed craft full of equipped armed troops when they can simply abduct/harvest civilians?

I can imagine a world where the aliens want to actually kill XCOM, not just down their craft. You could think of Hunter-Killers as "search and destroy."



My description in the previous post  is probably a bit more complex than it needs to be.


And if a tactical mission results from getting shot down, (maybe 25% of the time) the combat mission map would be displayed with any leftover Xcom survivors.  As earlier described, no aliens, just hostile scavenging locals.  If you win, you carry out your stuff and whatever can be recovered from such defeated locals (ak 47's etc). If you lose, yes you lose all.
 IF you ABORT  for one reason or another:
 -- ransom offer from locals for return of your soldiers: game determines how much  and if you pay  the soldiers  show up some time later at a base
 --or not pay ransom, and you never see them again.
 not sure how ordering Pizza or cleaning toilets could be used in this context,
 however SEXCHAT brings up another possibility...
 ....yes, instead of that; NEGOTIATIONS with locals to get your guys back:
 this is not a minigame but just another option after you click ABORT:
 
 Abort button (in tactical) clicked goes to another screen with the following options
 >cancel (returns to tactical)
 >Pay ransom to locals [$$game displays dollar amount$$$](if selected and if enough money deducted and return to Geoscape, otherwise message appears NOT ENOUGH FUNDS) soldiers(not gear) return to base.
 >Negotiate (if selected game displays $$$ amount which can be as little as half the amount or as much as triple the amount of original ransom)
 >>YES pay Negotiated ransom (if selected and if enough money deducted and return to Geoscape)
 >>NO do not pay negotiated ransom(return to Geoscape)
 >abandon soldiers (return to geoscape)

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but wherever the "too complex" line is, I think you're still way over it.

Offline Ethereal

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 349
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #50 on: October 06, 2017, 09:05:05 am »
I also think that it is not necessary to complicate the process.
If the acceleration of the attacked ship X-COM is higher, then there is an opportunity to exit the battle. Repeated attack of a UFO is possible only after some time.
- Attack of the interceptor - if successful, then the pilot survives in 50% of the cases and immediately gets credited to the base.
- Transport attack - if successful, -
over water - loss of all personnel, ship and equipment.
above the land - there is a point for the mission. Performed successfully - I got everything, but not ship, back. Mission failed or has not arrived - lost everything.
The mission itself is a hard battle with the aliens and a bunch of terrorists, without the presence of a UFO. A Soldiers and equipment of downed ship X-COM - virtual, and returned to the base in the event of a successful mission.

And I think all other excesses are relevant only in different specific mods.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2017, 09:08:01 am by Ethereal »

Offline mumble

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 335
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #51 on: October 08, 2017, 04:43:12 am »
Should it REALLY involve the ship not being gotten back if it lands intact? Even if its horribly fucked up, I figure one could do a lot of repairs on it....or at least maybe salvage the ship for parts? I just don't think it should be a total loss, thats a lot of potential money being blown up even if you save it.

Offline SteamXCOM

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 151
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #52 on: October 15, 2017, 10:18:19 pm »
Should it REALLY involve the ship not being gotten back if it lands intact?   ..........    I just don't think it should be a total loss, thats a lot of potential money being blown up even if you save it.



Yes I gather that is part of the point of having HunterKillar,
--you  lose all your men together with your craft on this event once triggered.
--the reason is, to make the game somewhat more unpredictable in regards to an occasional catastrophic loss sustained to the player.

Something like this was discussed on another thread, introducing some type of event to kick the player so its not such an easy ride to the finish line

HOWEVER

--include some type of player input / control that has the potential to diminish the HunterKiller (HC)  result:
---you somehow elude HC and nothing else happens
Some measurement of bad things happening if you are hit
you lose only a percentage of your
------ men,
------equipment
------and  (yes, your suggestion) salvage some materials from your craft or even repair it.

Offline Dwarmin

  • Sergeant
  • **
  • Posts: 46
  • Smoke grenades saved the Earth
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #53 on: November 08, 2017, 11:07:10 pm »
I like the idea of this mod.  :D

It is a significant increase of difficulty, of course.

I'd adjust so that HK's have varying strength-at the start of the game, they should be weak and slow. They shouldn't be able to kill XCOM craft unless you literally hang in there. I'd think they are more interested in driving you away-perhaps they don't bother to pursue. This is just the 'tutorial' however-it gives the player time to absorb the danger and react appropriately. Much like how aliens don't immediately start with Ethereals wielding blaster bombs and heavy plasma. Hostile and persistent craft should start attacking the more successful you are/the more time passes-and those you can't run away from. My only thing is, a bunch of them who were superior to xcom ships, overflying terror mission sites consecutively would pretty much make the game unwinnable at that point, right? Even enough of them early game would pretty much mean that you lose, or would become very boring-you can only fight so many off before you literally have no planes left, and with no planes, you can't intercept and have to rely on hoping the aliens land near your 1st base and patiently wait for you to arrive.

Worse if you didn't build a base that has enough reach for interceptors to escort your skyranger to get spots far on the globe...at that point of the start of the game, I don't see the aliens even seeing XCOM as a threat. I mean, look at it from a lore perspective-Kiryu Kai was the group that tried before XCOM. They neither attacked, or were attacked by the aliens for their entire five months operation time. The aliens literally ignored them, because they were ineffectual. The Spanish didn't need to sink the Aztecs canoes to conquer them either. :P

To sum up. As long as both the intent and the danger is communicated clearly and fairly to the player, and you are given a chance to adjust tactically to this threat over time, I have absolutely no problem with losing a dropship and crew to HK's.

It should be a realistic threat, otherwise there's no point.


...

Other thoughts.

What would be the chance of adding extra XCOM base slots along with this change? Or even mini-bases, of like 2x4, 4x4 8x8 construction blocks, that could be converted into full size bases later (thereby cutting initial lump sum costs). With HK's threatening the skies, we're going to need more interceptor 'slots'. Or we'll get wrecked before we can expand our air defense coverage all over the world. Or just ordinarily wrecked. I always have a hard time trying to figure if I should plug the radar hole in the Pacific, or try to fortify the Americas with a third base, one of which is my HQ usually and has less space for interceptors...

Another good addition-small 1x1 storage bays that can hold aircraft being repaired, or just being held in reserve. You still use hangars to launch and service them, but why waste the space for repairing non-functional or minimally functional craft? If we're going to be fighting dozens more air battles this will require some complements on our end.

This mod should def come with actual named pilots being introduced baseline, with their own skills and callsigns. I mean, INTERCEPTOR 1 has probably killed more aliens than my most elite Xcom soldiers. I wish he had a name...

Edit: Btw, the youtube link is broken, does anyone know where I can see this in action?
« Last Edit: November 08, 2017, 11:11:48 pm by Dwarmin »

Offline Yataka Shimaoka

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 285
  • I'm the trouble maker
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #54 on: November 09, 2017, 04:12:20 am »
P.S, this is not a mod, its a functionality for modders to allow aliens to intercept Xcom crafts, this is built in oxce+ and disabled, unless a mod activates the function

Offline tkzv

  • Commander
  • *****
  • Posts: 587
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #55 on: November 24, 2017, 03:45:18 pm »
Is this project still alive? Still interested in suggestions?

When your ship is faster, you don't get attacked.
Maybe only if you patrol/are stationary... but even if I allowed disengage then, the UFO would just attack again one milliseconds later... so no point doing that.
UFOs move before xcom moves in openxcom... they would reengage before xcom makes a first step towards the base.
Can you put disengaging X-COM craft a step or two ahead of the UFO, if X-COM is faster? This way fast craft will be able to run away.

minimize button is not allowed
Is there any way to reload or quit the game?

In air combat simulators there's often an option to try to run away from enemies by flying close to surface, hugging the local topography and hoping the pursuer will fail to dodge. Can there be a button like "run away through the hills" (need a better name :) ), that randomly destroys one of the combatants (or both)? Taking into account their maximum acceleration and pilots' stats like bravery and reactions.

Summary:
- most likely 1:1
- 1 xcom vs multiple UFO would be doable I guess (not easy)
- multiple xcom vs 1 UFO.... no (unless we somehow will be able to "synch" craft to fly in fixed formation = occupy exactly the same spot on the geoscape)
- multiple xcom vs multiple UFO... nope
If both "1 xcom vs multiple UFO" and "XCOM formation vs 1 UFO" are doable, what will be the obstacle to combine them?

If anyone has a good idea how to save the crew that doesn't involve "free bounty" (e.g. ground mission) and involves at least some penalty (e.g. lost craft and cargo? crew travelling 2 days back to base by public transport? :) ), I am listening... a combination of "most realistic" and "least rewarding" solution may get implemented.
Can you model explosions and damage like in Battlescape without starting Battlescape? If yes:
1. Model explosions outside the craft. I haven't calculated how the power of UFO cannons compares to Battlescape weapons. If you don't feel like figuring the precise value, make each hit an explosion of Blaster bomb at random points outside the X-COM craft. Not necessarily close to the hull. Those will be wounds inflicted in air.
2. Operatives jump out with parachutes or flying suits. The ones knocked out in step 1 "jump" too. Any items not carried by operatives at launch (either memory or auto-equip) are lost. If memory and auto-equip are both disabled, guess that means everything is lost.
3. Unencumbered operatives land without further injuries. Encumbered ones suffer blunt damage proportional to extra weight, possibly with fatal wounds. Stunned may get extra damage too. If the area is cold water, operatives lose a percentage of HPs.
Wearers of flying suits get no injuries.
4. The results can be displayed similarly to the missile defence shooting during the base assault.
5. UFO makes a pass and bombards the approximate location of operatives with something like Blaster bombs (or Stun bombs). For example, throw operatives randomly on a 4x4 (or 10x10) map. Randomly drop 16 (or 100) bombs.
6. If there is no Battlescape fight, the bombing results appear as text. If the crash landing is going to be followed by Battlescape mission, this may be actual bombs going off before the first turn.
7. Aliens may literally drop some forces to mop-up the area, if the base is crewed by flying creatures or ones able to survive the drop. Cyberdisks, Floaters, Celatids, Ethereals. Maybe Cryssalids and Sectopods. No UFO to capture, no big reward. No mop-up if X-COM fell in water.
8. If the aliens win and some operatives survive, but go MiA, the next retaliation mission will send the battleship to their home base.
9. If X-COM wins or there was no mop-up, travel time to home base depends on the landing region. It may be from 1-2 hours within the base region to a couple of weeks from Antarctica.

Quote
Sounds plausible, jet fighters can eject and soldiers (probably) have parachutes under the seat or something.
Yeah, not the best example. Then make it a helicopter. ;) One way or another, I think it should vary between transports.
Helicopters can shoot off their propellers to let the crew jump safely. Some can even shoot off the propeller and deploy a parachute, but that makes it an easier target.

Don't forget QTE elements. They make every game better, right? :)
https://jollyjack.deviantart.com/art/Quick-Time-Event-89217412 :)

I can imagine a world where the aliens want to actually kill XCOM, not just down their craft. You could think of Hunter-Killers as "search and destroy."
They may want to question the survivors. At the very least, about the target of the next retaliation mission. Hence my suggestion that they can carpet-bomb the crash site with stun bombs.


Two more questions, which I don't remember being mentioned:

1. How many hunters can be there?
  • Does the base get a limited number of hunters that can all be destroyed?
  • Does the base manufacture a new hunter every N hours?
  • If yes, is there a cap on the number of craft on the base?
  • Does it receive craft from elsewhere?
  • Are they all deployed at once, or only a limited number of them?

2. Do hunters attack ground vehicles, if the mod has them?

Offline The Reaver of Darkness

  • Commander
  • *****
  • Posts: 1312
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #56 on: November 24, 2017, 08:21:38 pm »
3. Unencumbered operatives land without further injuries. Encumbered ones suffer blunt damage proportional to extra weight, possibly with fatal wounds.
This seems like an unfair way to punish anyone who chooses to put extra load on their soldiers. For most of us, it'll do nothing at all. I always avoid encumbering my soldiers, and as I've seen in let's plays, others usually do the same. I would just remove that bit, or base injuries on the total amount of weight they're carrying, but then you should probably add in the weight of the soldier as well. If it's in kg (reasonable, based on 20-40 starting strength and 100 max), then you could add 100 for the soldier plus suit and basic equipment. That way, a soldier with very little extra equipment will tend to take less damage than one with a really heavy loadout, but the difference will be smaller than the overall risk itself.

Offline tkzv

  • Commander
  • *****
  • Posts: 587
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #57 on: November 24, 2017, 11:09:26 pm »
There has to be some weight limit. I read about RL parachutes that required dropping people only with pistols — rifles were too heavy and had to be dropped separately. I suggested this. Maybe a fixed weight limit would make more sense. Maybe it will only complicate things unnecessarily and should not be implemented at all.

P.S. Does anybody have the video from the starting post?
« Last Edit: November 25, 2017, 12:38:55 am by tkzv »

Offline Meridian

  • Global Moderator
  • Commander
  • ***
  • Posts: 5939
  • Aaand we're back!
    • View Profile
    • My Wiki
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #58 on: December 21, 2017, 03:02:27 pm »
Is this project still alive? Still interested in suggestions?

Still alive.
Suggestions are always welcome, but I will probably ignore 99% of them for now... I am working on Hobbes' initial requirements, even that requires a crapton of testing... and dogfights are fairly complicated and very very VERY hard to simulate/reproduce/debug anything else than the simplest cases.

PS: I am not planning to rewrite the dogfight code to be super-generic... I will extend it until it becomes saturated and then stop when I finally hit the wall.

P.S. Does anybody have the video from the starting post?

Deleted. Sorry.

Offline NeoWorm

  • Colonel
  • ****
  • Posts: 109
    • View Profile
Re: Hunter-killer
« Reply #59 on: December 27, 2017, 02:05:19 am »
Some time ago when this thread opened I spend few days brainstorming ideas and taking notes, since Meridian is around again I think I should write some of the ideas down.

I think the GUI should stay the same for both X-Com intercepting UFOs and UFOs intercepting X-Com. With all the options player have. For the sake of consistency. Even if that choosing disengaging speed will just mean UFO will take more time to get into range. Even better the GUI should be the same and the system working within the GUI we already have. I think there is a potential of UFOs changing their behaviour depending on player actions or other circumstances.

There should be probably UFO maneuvers described in the text line in the GUI. For better readability of the game. Can't check the video if is or isn't already there.

There is, I think, a problem with handling multiple craft battles. When a hunter-killer tries to engage X-Com craft that is already following a UFO. I think the hunter-killer should overtake the interception window making the X-Com craft disengage the original target. If the system gets more complicated (and I believe it will) I think sticking to one UFO vs multiple X-Com crafts would be the best for both programing, tradition and design clarity. Multiple crafts attacking each other could very easily devolve into unreadable mess.

Another thing I think could be problem is attacking X-Com transport planes returning from a mission. As far as I know when ground mission ends, all the loot is transported to the base immediately. That would not happen if the plane is shot down. Also if there will be some sort of mission after the plane is shot down, it should take into consideration all the injusries and lost or used equipment on board. For now simply excluding returning planes from hunter killer AI would be sufficien to avoid all these problems.

The radar range of UFO should be hidden from player. I think at least researching the UFO type should be necessary. Or better UFO type researched and Hyperwave Decoder in range.

Hunter Killers current target should be readable through Hyperwave decoder.

Also an idea of escorting X-Com transports by fighter planes came up in the thread. But it would be kinda difficult since if the UFO, which is almost always faster, picks the transport as a first target the fighter can't do much. There could be solution with either X-Com crafts flying in formations as single node on Geoscape which would need new systems to set it up. Or the hunter killer could just follow X-Com craft for some time at the begining of dogfight in similar manner X-Com can follow UFO, making it possible for another X-Com craft to join in into the fight and reducing this problem to normal one UFO vs multiple X-Com crafts battle. This solution is typical gamedesign avoiding of the problem, but I think it can work well enough.

And now some wild ideas that I had:
  • High level solution and I think in the end the best solution for maneuvers in interception would be to make all the maneuvers skillcheck of the pilot instead of just comparision of the craft speeds with pilot giving only bonuses. Each success means getting nearer to desired position (normal, cautious, standoff, disengage) - how far of for how long depending on how succesfull the pilot was. It can be justified by pilot outmaneuvering the UFO. When X-Com craft disengages the UFO is slowed down for some time while the X-Com can get some distance. Tie in experience gain depending on succesfull skillchecks and it would make pilots more of a characters and air combat more involved.
  • New Craft equipment like Mind shield (masking the craft with the use of pilots PSI skill/strenght) and portable Hyperwave decoder.
  • Since UFOs are now aware of X-Com crafts on geoscape and can react to them, what about UFOs running away from X-Com? or calling reinforcements. I don't know if generating a new mission called reinforcements that just spawns one single wave of attack UFOs in the same area is feasible or more robust system would be needed.
  • UFO can have preferences of type of X-Com craft they will attack. Each UFO having list of types of Crafts to engage and avoid. With types of crafts definable by player similarly to categories. So in the end there could be UFOs that will attack transports but run away from fighters or UFOs that will prefer some type of fighter before others. I think two lists of categories (one for avaoiding one for engaging) with weights and chances could work. Chance determining if the UFO will react checked periodically in some time increments as lont as the crafts are in range and weight determining if the UFO will change it's target if another craft enters his range - higher weight wins.
  • UFOs reacting to player depending on their action in the interception window. There could be a chance that if UFO damages X-Com craft enough it will decide to switch to hunter killer mode and finish it or on the contrary if the UFO is damaged, it will just try to run.
  • Also UFOs instead of attacking X-Com craft only follow him to the base. Keeping it's distance just like player could with standoff range.