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andor_00

Turn based strategy game, Want input.

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I''m a first time poster and I have been reading these forums lately. Very interesting discussions go on here. Anyways, I am currently working on a turn based strategy game on a skirmish level. I would like some input and ideas for my game. The basic setup works like this: Players buy their forces with a certain amount of points, set by the players. Players then place their forces on the battle field and gain tactical control of them. Troops have a certain amount of AP that they can use to preform various actions. Players will compete in scenarios or just fight to the death. It is set in a futuristic/sci-fi setting. There are three different sides that the player can chose from. I will give a brief description here: 1. A group of human soldiers who tend to fight with guerrilla tactics. They have a rag-tag appearence but they are not so sloppy with their skills. They train constantly with their firearms and have the same relationship with their guns as samurais have with their swords. The easiest way to describe them is: Samurais with guns. 2. Another group of humans who tend to fight in a more rank-and-file manner. They are always neatly dressed and tend to have a very arrogant attitude. They have a very detailed ranking system and authority is always respected. They rarely have traditional firearms, instead they practice a form of magic and have special guantlets to amplify their power. 3. An alien species that is much more primitive than the other two. They favor melee weapons over ranged weapons and their large build and strong muscles give them the advantage in close combat. Their body chemestry has a close resemblence to that of a plant. They communicate through smells given that they have no mouth. They many times fight with beasts of their planet on their side. Those are the sides. I would like some input and ideas for unit types and other general gameplay ideas. What would you like to see in a turn based strategy game? Any and all input is appreciated. Thanks "It''s a sad, sad day when your own weiner dog betrays you..."

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Have you played Myth and Myth II by any chance? If not you should definately check both those games out. You mentioned AP, so this will be a turn based game? You should look into the old Xcom series as well. There is of course the newer Fallout games. (based on the roleplaying game system GURPS).

Group 1: Americans Group 2: Those Brit''s Group 3: Their Aliens.

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I have played Myth II. I though it was a pretty good game. I also played a little bit of x-com but not Fallout. I am considering borrowing a few ideas from x-com and Jagged Allience such as being able to pull off quicker shots with less accuracy. I also want to use the idea of haveing multiple stances. Does anyone else have games to suggest or ideas for my game?

"It''s a sad, sad day when your own weiner dog betrays you..."

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Your really should play Fallout because its a good game and it can give you ideas. Fallout Tactics has stances as well. FalloutTactics is not the greatest game on earth (whereas fallout and fallout 2 just might be ) but it has a lot of turn based gameplay.

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I observe that side 3 has ''beasts'' from their own planets. I presume these would be large (elephant-sized) plant/animals?

If that is the case, the other sides should be able to have similar units. For side 1, tanks and mechs are obvious options. For side 2, tanks and mechs are also likely, as are more magical options - you need to be more specific about what ''magic'' means - is sufficiently advanced technology, or genuine magick?

If side 2 is magickal, perhaps they can possess or dispel their enemies, amongst other forms of attack.

Given that side 3 is ''much more primitive'', do they have space-flight, or have they hitched a lift with another side?

Side 1 might be able to hold units in reserve and drive/fly/beam them during a mission. Perhaps side 2 can magick units in from nowhere (or ressurect dead units). Side 3 may have none of those options, but perhaps could have units which grow other units during the battle.

For side 2, is their magic soley based on AP? If side 2 also have ''mana'' which is expended when magic is performed, this will serve to curb their magical powers and make the other two sides realistic opponents. Since side 1 are likely to move in small, autonomous, groups, if the magicians recharged their power from slow or unmoving mana-generator units, this would create an important strategic distinction between the two sides.

The fact that side 3 communicates via smells implies they are either stupid, or think very slowly. In practice both options are the same. Side 3 units may not be effective at quick strategic thinking, which could make them less effective against units of the other sides. A suitable advantage to that disadvantage would be that the side 3 units, although stupid, cost less points, so you get more of them.

Since creatures on side 3 are skilled at producing a variety of gasous chemicals, they may be able to produce poisonous gases. And, whilst sides 1 and 2 can wear environment suits, side 3 may not have that ability - perhaps a special unit is required to generate an atmosphere in which side 3 units can survive. This is similar to the side 2 mana-generator: you may not want to use both, otherwise the sides might not be different enough.

By stances, I assume you mean that you want to have different groups of actions a unit can perform, and then have that unit spend a turn switching from one group to another via a change of stance?

For side 1, a unit may have a stealthy stance, as opposed to a beserk stance. In that stance, the unit may do less damage, but is likely to take less damage. It moves more slowly, but perhaps becomes less visible in some fashion. The unit might also use a stance-change to switch to a more appropriate weapon, for example.

For side 2, a unit may have to adopt a magic stance to perform a spell, and may lose the stance after performing a spell. Like side 1, a magician may spend a stance-change modifying the settings on his/her gauntlet.

For all sides, there are the obvious standing/crouched/prone stances.



Best viewed with irony.

Hail Eris! All fnord hail Discordia!

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Thanks for the ideas Mayrel. I was planning on side one having tanks and speeders and such while side two could perhaps have large floating magic amplifyers. The nature of side two''s magic remains a mystery to most but it has been found to be amplifyed by technology.

Side three does not have space flight because the whole game takes place on their planet. For some reason (I''m not sure why yet.) Side one and two are forced to leave their home planet while already in a state of war. They arrive on the aliens planet (their ships have been fighting along the way no doubt) and discover the alien race. Side two does many things to the race to provoke them to war. Side one is actually more compatible with living with them but they are lumped into the same group as side two and it is very hard for them to convince the aliens otherwise considering their comunication problems.

I liked the idea of being able to summon troops in mid battle via ship or magic. And side 3 can perhaps have certain plants that can grow units out of them. I also liked the idea of having slowmoving/unmoving magic regenerators. It would add some strategic decisions for the others to make (Do I attack them directy or cut off their supply of magic?)

The aliens do have somewhat less intelligence than humans but I''m not sure how I would reflect that in gameplay. Their units however are durable and fast moving which helps somehwat to makeup for their lack of technology. I like the idea of emitting poinsonous gasses for them too. Perhaps side 2 could have an "air purify" spell.

I''ll have to tool around with the stances too. I was considering just the standard Standing/Crouching/Prone stances but your ideas could work to provide some interesting stances.

All in all: great ideas. Thanks.

Anyone''s elses ideas would be appreciated.

"It''s a sad, sad day when your own weiner dog betrays you..."

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With regards to stupid aliens, a few options spring to mind. Firstly, the aliens may be slower to respond to your commands. The magicians, with their highly regimented structure would probably respond more quickly. Side one, on the other hand, may take time to consider your orders, and perhaps even ignore them if they are too dangerous.

Another way to make your aliens less intelligent might be to make them less effective when attacking in groups. Perhaps formations won''t be available for them, and/or they can form only small groups.

An obvious way to make your aliens stupid is to make the other units smarter. Allow the humans to come to their own decisions - if they are hopelessly outnumbered, they may call in reinforcements, or retreat. They may come together in formations and make strategic manouevers without you having to tell them to. Your aliens, on the other hand, might just keep melee attacking until they get massacred.



Best viewed with irony.

Hail Eris! All fnord hail Discordia!

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This sounds quite fun! It reminds me of games workshop tabletop games.

A warning, if you want to make the aliens slow to respond, no one will like giving a unit orders then it taking 5 seconds to actually do something, it would be quite tedious, so I''d suggest making other factors e.g. maybe they attack more randomly or work better in groups etc. check out the tyranids in wh40k.

-Meto

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I wont be able to make them slow to respond because this is a turn based game. All that would do would cause frustration. I''ll have to look into other alternatives.

I actually was trying to make this game resemble a tabletop miniature warefare game. The gameflow will be alot like that. The characters even have little bases under their feet. (Although the only miniature game I have actually played is Star Wars Miniatures Battles.)

I have a picture that features a few of the units so you can get an idea of what the graphics will be like. (It will use 2d sprites that can be rotated just like 3d models.)

It can be found here:

http://www.geocities.com/andor_00/index.html

"It''s a sad, sad day when your own weiner dog betrays you..."

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What is your intended audience? The more hardcore wargamers or more casual strategy gamers? I have a hunch it''s the more casual kind of gamer.

I think having stereotyped "races" will eventually lead to stagnation for several reasons. Firstly, a predefined race or nation will eventually have all the capabilities of its units figured out which leads to all kinds of mini-maxing problems. Secondly, it forces the player to play with units that you the game designer has designed. The easiest way to relieve these problems is to allow some kind of scripting interface that will allow players to tweak the units according to certain rules that allows for far greater variety. This allows the player to create a force of his own liking. And as I''ve discovered after playing games like Car Wars, BattleTech and Heavy Gear, half the fun is in designing your own units. It also means that players can''t automatically create a limited set of strategies because the player will never know exactly what the capabilities are of units.

Also, I''m a big proponent of the "intangibles". What I mean by this are the elements of warfare which aren''t immediately obvious. Most gamers tend to focus on the units themselves and perhaps the terrain. But considerations like the morale or fatigue of units, or the quality of its leadership is seldom taken into effect. Things like supply, communications and organizational structure are also seldom taken into account.

I''m at a point where I no longer want to play strategy games that allow me to chose units at my own whim. Militaries are highly organized and structured entities which work within a certain framework. In general, forces are composed of sub-groups which in turn are made up of sub-groups all lead by commanders of various rank. When a player is allowed to buy forces willy-nilly at his own choosing, this structured hierarchy gets thrown out the window. More importantly beyond realistic factors, it also introduces a chaos to game play...mainly because there is no organization or cohesion amongst units.

Because your game is turn based, having ad hoc units is more manageable than they are in real time games, but I''d still give some thought to the organizational structure of your armed forces. The alien race, because it is more primitive will be at a disadvantage because of its lack of being able to coordinate and communicate effectively. It will therefore have to compensate for this by being more powerful. Never underestimate a well coordinated and disciplined unit going against a mob of units which, singly may be more powerful, or even qualitatively greater in number.

If you do keep your races the way they are, make sure that they logically fit. I for one would need some kind of convincing of how magic and science fit together. Call me a stickler for detail, but I have to have at least plausible deniability in a game world, otherwise I don''t even bother with it. Pure magic and fantasy? Fine, since it''s not supposed to be "realistic" per se, but when you combine the two it crosses over into what we expect should be possible. That''s just my opinion however, and you''re free to create your background however you see fit.

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