Author Topic: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]  (Read 755 times)

Offline Kzer-Za

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Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« on: August 21, 2019, 05:32:11 pm »
This is a little tweak that decreases the amount of TUs the aliens have during your first turn in Battlescape.

I have the plans of making this amount equal to the amount of TUs they normally reserve when in Patrol mode depending on their aggression stat. However, for now I had to go with one common amount for all of them, because I have no means to query the spawned unit about its aggression. So I went with 33% because: a) it is more or less average figure (they reserve 0% TUs with aggression 3+, 33% with aggression 2, 40% with aggression 1, and 50% with aggression 0 — my thanks to Meridian for providing that information); b) it corresponds to aggression 2, which is the most likely aggression level for the units you are going to encounter during the first turn.

As to the rationale for decreasing their first-turn TUs, there are two reasons: a gameplay-related one and a "realism"-related one.

Gameplay. Currently, on your first turn you either risk facing significant reaction fire, or just wait this turn out (if you don't see any enemies that can shoot you right inside your aircraft). This leads to the first turn always (with the above-mentioned limitation) being skipped. It means we might just as well give the aliens on your first turn the amount of TUs that they usually reserve. This way we get rid of: a) one routine action (clicking End of Turn); b) the element of being (un)lucky, because you can't just skip the first turn if an enemy has spawned in such a way that it can see the inside of your craft (I'm not a great fan of relying on luck).

"Realism". Of course, realism in a game is a very relative thing, and by itself it's not a reason to adjust something in the gameplay. But if there is a gameplay reason for some adjustment, then realism-related concerns can reinforce the decision. And the aliens having full TUs on your first turn do not make much sense. Did they have nothing to do until you arrived? Were they just standing there twiddling their thumbs? If a UFO has landed for its mission, they would be busy carrying out the said mission. If it has crash-landed, busy with repairing it: when your UFO is missing half a hull and a Power Source, I suppose even soldiers would have to lend a hand to engineers (not all work is gonna require qualified engineers in such a situation, there will be plenty of menial tasks). So they would have to rush out on your arrival, moving hurriedly, and barely having TUs to reserve. With the terror missions, the same: the aliens would be busy chasing civilians, civilians busy running away from aliens stupidly walking here and there, as they do :) So from the "realism" point of view it also makes sense that the aliens would have only their normally reserved TUs during the first turn, not the full amount.

Offline BlackStaff

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2019, 09:42:22 pm »
Very interesting! Congratulations!  :)
I suppose it's compatible with TFTD if we change "master: xcom1" to "master: xcom2" ?

Offline 7Saturn

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2019, 12:50:05 am »
JFTR: If it were about realism, they would have plenty of time to get into position while you are landing with your craft. The second the door opens, heavy bullet rain would be an appropriate response... But then again, you would not have to discover the entire map first, to see what it holds. You could just have a quick look outside the window, while you find a landing place. ;-)

Offline BlackStaff

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2019, 04:52:41 pm »
I'm not interpreting the same thing you are!
Before landing it is logical that the pilot should look for two things:
- a flat, unobstructed place to land
- a relatively isolated place where the number of ENIs is the least important (in reality landing 1 or 2 km from the area will be feasible but we are talking about UFOs so we do what we want from reality).

Tactical landings are made in a matter of seconds. Meanwhile, the few ENIs who had seen the aircraft were approaching the assault point. So it's normal that they used part of their TU!

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator

Offline Kzer-Za

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2019, 11:11:49 am »
I suppose it's compatible with TFTD if we change "master: xcom1" to "master: xcom2" ?

Yes, it absolutely should work with TFTD, I just didn't think about it because I don't play it myself :)

Offline N7Kopper

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2019, 11:11:33 pm »
I'm not interpreting the same thing you are!
Before landing it is logical that the pilot should look for two things:
- a flat, unobstructed place to land
- a relatively isolated place where the number of ENIs is the least important (in reality landing 1 or 2 km from the area will be feasible but we are [b[talking about UFOs[/b] so we do what we want from reality).

Tactical landings are made in a matter of seconds. Meanwhile, the few ENIs who had seen the aircraft were approaching the assault point. So it's normal that they used part of their TU!
Yeah, in real life they're officially called UAP's! (Unidentified Aerial Phenomena)

But yeah, if this was more realistic, we wouldn't have the dropship on the Battlescape map at all, because X-Com would be either crawling through the brush to get to the UFO undetected, or at the very least landing in such a way that the Skyranger can be used as cover, after raking the enemy position with heavy firepower to force the ayys into cover.

With the terror missions, the same: the aliens would be busy chasing civilians, civilians busy running away from aliens stupidly walking here and there, as they do :) So from the "realism" point of view it also makes sense that the aliens would have only their normally reserved TUs during the first turn, not the full amount.
Or, if they have weapons (such as fists), running towards the militarily-trained/biologically engineered aliens spoiling for a fight. The implementation of civilians really is more like the Green Units in Fire Emblem than actual civilians, even the vanilla version. In OXCE especially, "civilian" in-engine is just defined as "allied AI" in a very broad sense.

Offline Gfixcom

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2019, 10:11:22 am »
This is so logical that the mod should be integrated as an option in OXCE, I think.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2019, 12:36:59 pm »
I can't see how it is logical that people are oblivious to the fact that a Skyranger just landed nearby.
Sure, as discussed already, the fact that the Skyranger just drops on the enemy is controversial in itself. But there are two approaches to this:
1) It's just a game; discussing logic is pointless.
2) There are consistent, objective reasons for X-Com to land like this.
Limiting enemy TUs is not justified in any of these two approaches. Also, it's unXComy. ;)

Offline BlackStaff

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2019, 05:06:36 pm »
In fact, there is no point in discussing the merits or uselessness of this principle.
It is now a Mod. So everyone is free to use it... at their own risk!
The integration into an existing pack remains at the initiative of the author(s) of the said packs!
If they accept it's good... if they refuse it's good too!

Offline N7Kopper

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2019, 07:59:34 pm »
1) It's just a game; discussing logic is pointless.
Limiting enemy TUs is not justified in any of these two approaches. Also, it's unXComy. ;)
In that first case, the same gameplay argument can be made for this new approach as the gameplay argument for blocking the enemy from using explosives until turn three. The way X-Com sometimes land with no eye for deployment tactics and all of the aliens have full TUs despite being otherwise scattered and completely unready for the giant dropship are inherently illogical, and would need to be lore explained to not wrankle people.

And, maybe some of us are just fixing for a game that actually subjects the enemy to attrition: note how no rival Trainers in Pokémon ever have HP or PP missing when you start fighting them, even if they logically should.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2019, 08:38:33 pm »
In that first case, the same gameplay argument can be made for this new approach as the gameplay argument for blocking the enemy from using explosives until turn three.

Yeah, it's stupid too, I disable it by default.

Offline new_civilian

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Re: Decreased TUs for aliens on your first turn [OXCE]
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2019, 11:46:25 am »
Thanks for this mod/script! It's a real improvement over the original behaviour.