Author Topic: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.  (Read 847 times)

Offline mumble

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[Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« on: December 17, 2018, 01:46:41 am »
I can see an incredibly interesting way to make maps more interesting in the game, but it would require scripting and a decent amount of code, but could be very rewarding. The idea is to have the ability, mid match to edit map sectors beyond just blowing stuff up.

I have 2 ideas for this, one is inventory usage, placing a "tile" or wall, via inventory. The implication of this could mean deployable step ladders as a medium between walking everywhere, and flying deployable barricades, ect. There would obviously need to be extra code for enemies to destroy barricades, but I'm speaking about the long term implications of such a script.

The other is allowing "switches" that work similarly to doors, right clicking to open, which activate something on the map. Lights, locked doors, explosives, and possibly more.

With the ability to script this, I could see step ladders as deployable equipment, light switches inside buildings, secret doorways in bases ect.

I realize this would be a lot of code, but I can't help but think it could add plenty.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2018, 11:44:02 am »
Tiles that do continuous damage (like standing in fire) would be nice.
With a defined damage type.

The_Funktasm

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2018, 12:23:56 pm »
I'm aware this isn't exactly relevant...

On the topic of "hazard" tiles it might be interesting to see waist-deep water/wading. If mixed with other water tiles that are not traversable it'd make for convincing streams in woodland maps, or full-fledged swamps. I assume it'd just be more tiring tiles to walk on for units.

It's something I assume vanilla xcom is capable of at least to some extent.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2018, 02:47:22 pm by The_Funktasm »

Offline Meridian

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2018, 12:49:43 pm »



Offline FeruEnzeru[RETIRED/I QUIT]

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2018, 02:53:49 pm »
@mumble
That will be a neat idea, but... i wish things like... anything but electrical-circuited cloaking devices (like in the images Meridian placed in the message instead of attachments) will be vulnerable to water or anything. But i will happen til 2020s or 2030s (2010s is a almost over as it seems unless January of Next Year begins after December 31 of this year).

I dunno what Starcraft or XCOM:EU2012 or any kind of cloaking will work or not work on water or in underwater purposes.

Also, making a fire MCD on MCDedit will be difficult to make as far as it goes according to plan.  :-\

Regards,
~Feru

Offline Hobbes

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2018, 03:03:56 pm »
I have 2 ideas for this, one is inventory usage, placing a "tile" or wall, via inventory. The implication of this could mean deployable step ladders as a medium between walking everywhere, and flying deployable barricades, ect. There would obviously need to be extra code for enemies to destroy barricades, but I'm speaking about the long term implications of such a script.

Turn the game into Dungeons and Dragons?

One thing I noticed repeatedly is that the more features you add to a terrain, the lesser the probability that they'll be used. The flow of a tactical turn-based battle is that players strive to defeat the other side as quickly as possible (and then to proceed to the next battle). Players tend to ignore terrain features that will prolong the battle since the tactical gains are usually minimal, and you can see this in the newer XComs as well.

If the goal is to turn the game into a puzzle solver, where you need to complete a number of tasks before winning the mission, then sure, those features make sense. Otherwise, it will be simply easier for the player to ignore them and focus on killing the aliens instead.

Offline Meridian

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2018, 03:13:29 pm »
+1000

The_Funktasm

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2018, 03:14:53 pm »
That will be a neat idea, but... i wish things like... anything but electrical-circuited cloaking devices (like in the images Meridian placed in the message instead of attachments) will be vulnerable to water or anything. But i will happen til 2020s or 2030s (2010s is a almost over as it seems unless January of Next Year begins after December 31 of this year).

I dunno what Starcraft or XCOM:EU2012 or any kind of cloaking will work or not work on water or in underwater purposes.

Also, making a fire MCD on MCDedit will be difficult to make as far as it goes according to plan.  :-\

Regards,
~Feru

Pretty sure that's been a thing in sci-fi because of two not quite solid lines of logic. For one, air is a kind of easy to forget thing so people assume it'd be easier for cloaking systems to work in as though it isn't a physical medium or something that can affect sight. It isn't tangibly solid so people underestimate how it can work at affecting what one sees like a lens does. For two, water has a very complicated sort of effect on light's movement. Modern video games spend a decent budget for graphics cards to render caustics and such from how light interacts with water. Essentially it's based on lighting that's far more variable, and light, with how fast it moves, would cause a sort of lag between lighting effects in the real world and those shown by the cloaking effect.

(point being that if water affects the cloaking then air would, as would dust, smoke, etc. anything that moves and isn't just the absolute surface of the armor/skin itself.)

But that's like, me overthinking shit and not actually thinking game mechanics, so....

That said I agree that these things "shorting out" or utterly shutting off is completely unrealistic.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2018, 03:16:55 pm by The_Funktasm »

Offline FeruEnzeru[RETIRED/I QUIT]

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2018, 03:19:08 pm »
@Hobbes
Turn the game into Dungeons and Dragons?
Speaking of this thread.

Offline robin

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2018, 09:48:31 pm »
One thing I noticed repeatedly is that the more features you add to a terrain, the lesser the probability that they'll be used. The flow of a tactical turn-based battle is that players strive to defeat the other side as quickly as possible (and then to proceed to the next battle). Players tend to ignore terrain features that will prolong the battle since the tactical gains are usually minimal, and you can see this in the newer XComs as well.
Could you make an example? (So I know what to avoid when making terrains :P ).
I'm always a bit struggling with making terrains interesting while keeping them simple.


edit:
just noticed that this is a super derail of the topic, maybe it should be discussed elsewhere.

Offline Hobbes

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2018, 11:35:18 pm »
Could you make an example? (So I know what to avoid when making terrains :P ).
I'm always a bit struggling with making terrains interesting while keeping them simple.


edit:
just noticed that this is a super derail of the topic, maybe it should be discussed elsewhere.

With the ability to script this, I could see step ladders as deployable equipment, light switches inside buildings, secret doorways in bases ect.

These 3 ideas can be used to show my reasoning:
Step ladders - for the player to need to bring those, the map would be required to:
1) Contain a section that could only be reached through the use of those ladders, which then forces the player to always bring one, otherwise it can't get to that section and win the mission or get whatever is in that section; when the player learns about this and always brings one, then this simply becomes another chore and stops being a challenge/novelty
2) Be designed in a way where there's only one access point to the special section, but in that case the player still can move through this bottleneck, since the AI is too dumb to understand the importance of such an access point and defend it accordingly, like a human opponent would. The ladder could still be used as an alternate way to reach the special section, but it will require more time spent by the player in clicking, etc., for no special gain since outflanking will not give any advantages while fighting.

Secret passages:
3) If they are secret, then the player will need to spend time discovering them, otherwise there's nothing secret about them, instead of fighting. And when they are discovered the first time, then they definitely stop being secret.
4) Since they provide alternate access to other map sections, then we go back to the whole bottleneck dilemma - tactically the player gains little or nothing for the amount of extra actions required to use those passages; a bottleneck's role is to funnel both the player's and the AIs units to a single location to maximize and speed up fighting, but if you're adding those alternate passages, then the bottleneck loses its importance, specially if it is designed to serve as a gateway between the player and an objective that needs to be destroyed

Light switches
5) If the map starts completely in the dark, then the player will bring electro-flares from the start once it learns this; so a global switch needs to be placed in a location that can't be close to the starting area (otherwise just design the map all lit up) and if you place it in an objective area that you need to reach to win, then once you reach it there's no point in turning on the lights
6) If the mission is a 'kill them all' then it would make more sense to have a global light switch placed at the other end of the map, but there's already a 'bug hunt' mode in OXCE to speed up finding that last alien, which is more helpful than turning on all the lights
(plus there's the turn 20 limit when the AI becomes aware of all your units' position)

Now, regarding specific terrain design, as you asked, consider the original Terror Site terrain: how often do you usually move units upstairs on the large buildings or spend time checking all the rooms?

The answer is that usually players don't (and this is something I've seen being mentioned in forums about the newer XComs as well, where players tend to avoid getting inside buildings) for a number of reasons:
* AI units will eventually move out of those locations, if they start there
* It is faster to clear a map if you stick to the ground/outside, for both moving and line of sight/fire proposes
* Even better, blow up the buildings from a distance to reveal the interior instead of risking reaction fire (or Chryssalids!)
* A map designer can always spawn enemy units into closets/toilets/etc. like TFTD did in the Ship maps, to force the player to clear every building/floor (and make the walls indestructible), but nearly everyone dislikes those TFTD maps precisely for this reason

However, there's a bit of a sweet spot here, that can be shown through how UFOs/Alien Bases are designed:
* UFOs are essentially bottlenecks that the player needs to move through, in order to kill/capture the last remaining AI units (whose spawn points are designed to keep them in those locations) or to reach the Elerium; same applies to the Command section of alien bases and the engineering block that contain UFO Power Sources in those bases
* You can also design buildings or underground base sections using the bottleneck principle, but if you fill a map with too many of those structures then you risk missions becoming an endless chore (like TFTD) of clearing everything from AI units; this can be mitigated if you give the player some 'reward' for doing so (money, equipment, etc.)

The_Funktasm

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Re: [Suggestion] Battlescape tile edit mid battle.
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2018, 12:05:48 am »
I think the lights thing is a bit less of a stretch if you consider individual lit rooms. A player can order his troops to scan the room at  its existing light level, or alternatively expend the extra time or risk an alien reaction moving over to the switch and lighting the room. Were the aliens not able to see in the dark that'd also make it to where any room like this with windows has utterly exposed the units in it.

Another thought is the hangar in XCOM bases. Why does a military hangar not have headache inducing lighting? I guess the answer is nobody turned them on?

The ladders honestly seem a bit better suited to specialty missions wherein it's not the means to the usual end of "kill the aliens" but instead the means used to reach a goal item or location. Consider if all floater bases had few access points to get down into them, or if Cydonia was accessed not through the front door but an explosive breach.

Personally though I think switches would work most ideally for large doors or lifts, moreso than lights.