Author Topic: Pinning (suppression) mechanics in OXC  (Read 1777 times)

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Pinning (suppression) mechanics in OXC
« on: January 01, 2018, 01:57:31 pm »
Pinning mechanics is a request that appears regularly among the OXC community. This is not surprising: it was probably the most iconic new feature of battlescape in Xenonauts, so it gained some interest.
I personally didn't like this mechanics much in Xenonauts; I found it rather obnoxious, as it made already long games even longer, the enemy was hard to hit, your people were bogged down too much. So I wouldn't be happy about importing this mechanics to OXC as a roughly 1:1 copy. But the concept itself seemed interesting, so I've tried to design a new model as a fun experiment with possible implementation in the future.
My objectives were:
* A system which doesn't get in the way too much, but becomes pronounced in easy missions (to make them even easier).
* More in line with OXC mechanics.
* Simple to implement code-wise (as far as I can say).

So here is the deal:

PINNING TEST:
1. Occurs every time a bullet passes through the same tile a unit is standing on, or a neighbouring one. (Only one test per bullet.)
2. Take weapon's average damage and subtract reacting target's lowest armour, modified by resistance to this damage type. If the result is 0 or more, end; if more than 0, go to point 3.
3. Your number becomes a % value for a test of pinning. Choose a random number between 1 and 100. If greater than our number, end; if equal to or lower than our number, go to 4.
4. The target takes a Bravery test. If succeeds, nothing happens; if fails, is pinned.

PINNING EFFECTS:
- Immediately burns 25% TUs. If the unit was pinned in enemy turn (most cases), they start their turn with 25% TUs spent.
- Pinning tests are taken at half Bravery instead of full Bravery.
- If a player unit, forced to kneel when possible.
- Pinning lasts until the beginning of the next turn, unless the unit fails another pinning test.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2019, 08:37:27 pm by Solarius Scorch »

Offline tkzv

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2018, 07:57:06 pm »
Pinning mechanics is a request that appears regularly among the OXC community. This is not surprising: it was probably the most iconic new feature of battlescape in Xenonauts, so it gained some interest.
I personally didn't like this mechanics much in Xenonauts; I found it rather obnoxious, as it made already long games even longer, the enemy was hard to hit, your people were bogged down too much. So I wouldn't be happy about importing this mechanics to OXC as a roughly 1:1 copy. But the concept itself seemed interesting, so I've tried to design a new model as a fun experiment with possible implementation in the future.
My objectives were:
* A system which doesn't get in the way too much, but becomes pronounced in easy missions (to make them even easier).
* More in line with OXC mechanics.
* Simple to implement code-wise (as far as I can say).

So here is the deal:

PINNING TEST:
1. Occurs every time a bullet passes through the same voxel a unit is standing on, or a neighbouring one. (Only one test per bullet.)
2. Take weapon's average damage and subtract reacting target's lowest armour, modified by resistance to this damage type. If the result is 0 or more, end; if more than 0, go to point 3.
3. Your number becomes a % value for a test of pinning. Choose a random number between 1 and 100. If greater than our number, end; if equal to or lower than our number, go to 4.
4. The target takes a Bravery test. If succeeds, nothing happens; if fails, is pinned.

PINNING EFFECTS:
- Immediately burns 25% TUs. If the unit was pinned in enemy turn (most cases), they start their turn with 25% TUs spent.
- Pinning tests are taken at half Bravery instead of full Bravery.
- If a player unit, forced to kneel when possible.
- Pinning lasts until the beginning of the next turn, unless the unit fails another pinning test.

Is there a limit to the number of pinning tests for a unit?
What is a bravery test? Comparing an evenly distributed 1-100 to Bravery?
25% of TU maximum or 25% of remaining TUs?
If the unit is in a covered area next to an open space (for example, a pass between 2 houses), this mechanic would prevent retreating deeper into the covered position. Is this the desired outcome?
How is it better than bullet near misses reducing morale?
Early on operatives have under armour 2. Plasma beams have damage 52, 80 and 115. Heavy Plasma would mean a test after every shot. Is this the desired outcome?

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2018, 09:10:14 pm »
Is there a limit to the number of pinning tests for a unit?

No, but they aren't cumulative - either you are pinned or not.

What is a bravery test? Comparing an evenly distributed 1-100 to Bravery?

I suppose so. I don't know the actual formulas.

25% of TU maximum or 25% of remaining TUs?

Of maximum TUs.

If the unit is in a covered area next to an open space (for example, a pass between 2 houses), this mechanic would prevent retreating deeper into the covered position. Is this the desired outcome?

Clarification: it doesn't prevent the soldier from moving. So you can still retreat when pinned, but you have less TUs to do so and are also way more prone to getting pinned again by any reaction fire (which immediately makes you kneel and therefore lose another 12 TUs).

How is it better than bullet near misses reducing morale?

It's... well, completely different. I don't think simple morale tests would be a good way to simulate pinning, for many, many reasons.

Early on operatives have under armour 2. Plasma beams have damage 52, 80 and 115. Heavy Plasma would mean a test after every shot. Is this the desired outcome?

I suppose so, as long as they pass close enough.

Offline tkzv

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2018, 02:00:59 am »
No, but they aren't cumulative - either you are pinned or not.
An operative moves, provokes reaction fire, gets pinned, loses TUs, tries to move again, is shot at again, fails pinned test again. Does he lose more TUs this turn?

My questions above assumed that yes, every new shot has a chance to slow him down further.


Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2018, 07:08:52 pm »
An operative moves, provokes reaction fire, gets pinned, loses TUs, tries to move again, is shot at again, fails pinned test again. Does he lose more TUs this turn?

My questions above assumed that yes, every new shot has a chance to slow him down further.

I think no, because it wouldn't match the rule which says that you can only be pinned once at a time (so you always lose only 25% of TUs at the start of your turn). If you were pinned in your own turn, and still move, then you don't test even test for further pinning - you are already cowering and that's fine by me.

Offline mumble

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2018, 12:39:28 pm »
Sorry for the necro, but I saw a link to this from XCF forum, and was intrigued by the idea!

I think this idea could potentially be quite interesting, and certainly make automatics far more valuable. This would be nice, but I'd like to throw a few ideas in.

-Damage threshold for initial check could be partially effected by bravery, and perhaps a little random. I doubt soldiers could precisely gauge a guns potency while bullets wizz past, so it would be slightly randomized, in my mind, and effected by bravery : This way rookies will be a little more likely to be pinned by small arms than those who have seen some action / have balls. Getting shot is never fun.
-I'd think pinning would effect stats some, like reactions and firing, I don't imagine a pinned soldier could fire accurately, or return fire as easily.
-Actual TU's lost, other stats lost, and kneel chance, I think could be again multiplied by bravery, so cowards are more prone to being effected a bit more harshly than someone who is brave. Even the bravest people flinch sometimes, but someone who is really scared of fighting aliens I think would freeze up a bit more.... this all might end up too heavily distinguishing the brave from the cowards though, I'm not sure.  Regardless, stat hits to being pinned for aiming and reactions would be great, it was how xcom 2012 did it among other things, it reduced your aim significantly when suppressed
-Possibly an LOS limit on being pinned...wasn't this in xcom 2012? Make the players a little less visibly aware at distance due to worrying about being shot. Actually, this was technically for hunkering down I think, but this would effectively emulate hunker down panic from that if a low bravery check.
-Not sure how possible this would be, but perhaps an adjacent cell check on all 8 sides of the player, searching for a LOS break between the suppressor and the victim, and dependent on bravery, remaining TU, moving to said cell involuntarily.
-Make this also apply to explosives that blow within 1 tile. (1 tile from the edge, not the center obviously)

Sorry for the necro post again, but this was brought to my attention, and I really wanted to give my 2 cents into it...Hope it isn't a problem.

I'd love to see this added as a mechanic, considering I regularly use suppressive fire anyway to intimidate cultists (firing a mini-gun above their head) to delay a non lethal capture.

Also, forgive any of this being incoherent, I wrote this way late...

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2018, 01:03:48 pm »
-Damage threshold for initial check could be partially effected by bravery, and perhaps a little random. I doubt soldiers could precisely gauge a guns potency while bullets wizz past, so it would be slightly randomized, in my mind, and effected by bravery : This way rookies will be a little more likely to be pinned by small arms than those who have seen some action / have balls. Getting shot is never fun.

Sometimes they can, sometimes they can't. Sure it's a simplification, but I think it's acceptable for X-Com, plus the test is randomized anyway.

-I'd think pinning would effect stats some, like reactions and firing, I don't imagine a pinned soldier could fire accurately, or return fire as easily.

Maybe, but I'm not sure if it can be programmed easily. Besides, losing 25% TUs is already getting in the way of your firing a lot.

-Actual TU's lost, other stats lost, and kneel chance, I think could be again multiplied by bravery, so cowards are more prone to being effected a bit more harshly than someone who is brave. Even the bravest people flinch sometimes, but someone who is really scared of fighting aliens I think would freeze up a bit more.... this all might end up too heavily distinguishing the brave from the cowards though, I'm not sure. Regardless, stat hits to being pinned for aiming and reactions would be great, it was how xcom 2012 did it among other things, it reduced your aim significantly when suppressed

How does this relate to the model I proposed? There is already plenty of Bravery in it.

-Possibly an LOS limit on being pinned...wasn't this in xcom 2012? Make the players a little less visibly aware at distance due to worrying about being shot. Actually, this was technically for hunkering down I think, but this would effectively emulate hunker down panic from that if a low bravery check.

That's certainly very hard to code, as it would go against the X-Com model. Plus, I personally think it's superfluous and doesn't fit into the general design well.

-Not sure how possible this would be, but perhaps an adjacent cell check on all 8 sides of the player, searching for a LOS break between the suppressor and the victim, and dependent on bravery, remaining TU, moving to said cell involuntarily.

I think it's going a bit too far, I would prefer a simple, understandable mechanics.

-Make this also apply to explosives that blow within 1 tile. (1 tile from the edge, not the center obviously)

That would require a new, separate mechanics. But if it allows us to use flashbangs and such, I'm supporting this. :)

Sorry for the necro post again, but this was brought to my attention, and I really wanted to give my 2 cents into it...Hope it isn't a problem.

Relax, necro posting only applies to forums which specifically deal with temporary stuff, like concerts or ongoing processes... In my opinion you can't "necro" a thread here; your post is either valuable or not.

Offline mumble

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2018, 04:56:43 am »
The lost aim and reaction stats I think would further accentuate the IDEA of suppression fire, its purpose, and effects (though admitably, it might be hard to code). Bullets wizzing past might make you flinch, but losing over 25% tu (counting the forced kneel too) is a bit much, and since this is a purely PSYCHOLOGICAL effect on the unit, Id think stuff like tremors, flinching, adrenaline, ect, would throw off aim, or make them a little shaky, which would make accurate firing, and reactions significantly worse.

As for bravery multiplying the effect of being pinned, again, psychological effects : or possibly even multiplying by current morale. The idea is, again, someone who is a coward will be WORSE off psychologically to several dozen bullets wizzing past (more inclined to the natural "flea danger" fight or flight response, meaning hitting the deck, freezing up, ect) While someone with more brass balls, even if they do flinch, might recover better, and be less shaken over it.

Come to think of it, a morale check in general would fit well into this.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2018, 11:42:39 am »
The lost aim and reaction stats I think would further accentuate the IDEA of suppression fire, its purpose, and effects (though admitably, it might be hard to code). Bullets wizzing past might make you flinch, but losing over 25% tu (counting the forced kneel too) is a bit much, and since this is a purely PSYCHOLOGICAL effect on the unit, Id think stuff like tremors, flinching, adrenaline, ect, would throw off aim, or make them a little shaky, which would make accurate firing, and reactions significantly worse.

I am not against it, especially if it would be configurable. But I would consider it secondary to the more basic effects.

As for bravery multiplying the effect of being pinned, again, psychological effects : or possibly even multiplying by current morale. The idea is, again, someone who is a coward will be WORSE off psychologically to several dozen bullets wizzing past (more inclined to the natural "flea danger" fight or flight response, meaning hitting the deck, freezing up, ect) While someone with more brass balls, even if they do flinch, might recover better, and be less shaken over it.

Come to think of it, a morale check in general would fit well into this.

Yeah, but there already is a morale test in the model... What exactly is missing???

Offline mumble

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2018, 01:17:34 pm »
I thought you said it tested BRAVERY, which doesn't change mid battle, while MORALE does... this would actually really make this a lot more dynamic.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2018, 04:08:28 pm »
I thought you said it tested BRAVERY, which doesn't change mid battle, while MORALE does... this would actually really make this a lot more dynamic.

Right, good point.
Honestly, I am not sure which case is better. But in my model I have already somewhat addressed this by halving the Bravery for already pinned units. I worry that using morale may turn it into an unstoppable downward spiral.

Offline mumble

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2018, 02:43:11 am »
Honestly, why not both?...

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Pinning mechanics in OXC
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2018, 12:26:08 pm »
Honestly, why not both?...

Because I worry that using morale may turn it into an unstoppable downward spiral. :P