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AoS

Gameplay Mechanic Discussion(real time strategy) Thread

4 posts in this topic

My goal as a game designer has always been to push genre boundaries, not in radical ways, but in medium sized steps. I like to bring important features of specific genres into the real time strategy medium also. I don't particularly care for mainstream acceptance either, for instance many people say they do or would hate real time strategy games with extensive base building, but I want that, and its only the permutations of that which I like to debate, and not that it should exist in general, I take that as a given.

 

My goal here is to discuss various small and large gameplay changes to real time strategy games, possibly one or two new ones per week.

 

I am aware that because real time strategy games often focus on fast 30 minute multiplayer that most of these mechanics would not be viable in the commercial sphere due to being more appropriate for games the length more of a TBS game.

 

My first question is sort of a two parter:

 

Firstly:

How do you feel about making buildings significantly harder to destroy than units? Suppose an average unit with 400 health with 50-100 being inexperienced if you have leveling or spam if you don't and 1000-2000 being a very strong unit. Then suppose that buildings start at 5000 for really low tier and rise as high as 50000 health. Really strong units, or specialized siege units might deal 500-1000 to a building but above average down to gnat strength units generally deal only 10-100 damage to them.

 

In most games buildings are only marginally stronger than units and can even be killed by swords on stone or bullets on metal.

 

Secondly:

How do you feel about units that spawn loaded in a building in a game like the one described above? Most real time strategy games spawn units one by one outside of the structure and even with a weak building like those normally seen you may be able to train 1-10 units only to watch them perish one by one. I think it would be a nice mechanic, although less important that the first more hardy building mechanic, if you could keep units inside their creating structure and save up. If you could take some heat on the building and then spawn 5-10 units at once you might be able to weaken an enemy army enough that over time the trade of building health to save up forces allows you to take the win. Or maybe you save up enough guys and then focus down the siege units so that the enemy is effectively forced to give up because he can't take down the building before you spawn a new army.

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What about all buildings having high health, BUT requiring supplies and repairing?<br /><br />A building would have a condition in addition to the health. The condition goes down with both time and damage (amount of damage doesnt matter much, more the variety/duration of the damage) and if it reaches 0 the health of the building will start going down fast.<br /><br />If the condition is over some specified value, the building will slowly repair itself. (as the condition bar also kind of represents available supplies and repairing)<br /><br />The condition bar can be incremented through lets say by having a supply line deliver things there, or not being under attack (giving an opportunity of repairing things for whoever/whatever is inside)<br /><br /><br />So to destroy/capture a building the enemy can:<br />a)Inflict constant damage to it (lets say through some weak artillery)<br />b)Prevent supplies and repairs (having troops near it, blocking supply lines)<br />c)Do it the old way and letting the 250 tank army eat all the health<br /><br />To defend it you can:<br />a)Prevent the enemy from blocking the supply or repair for too long, so repairs can be made before the enemy is back<br />b)Destroy artillery and stuff inflicting constant damage breaking all those radiactive liquid pipes on the roof<br />c)Build moar walls
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I'm not trying to design an RTS game. I am asking questions about specific mechanics.

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For the first:

I would only care about stronger buildings if I were able to reduce their functionality through damage, or otherwise hamper them (like by cutting off supplies). Otherwise the RTS would play out similarly to current games, but with a different balance of unit vs. Structure resource value.
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Well it would make sieges more significant and also help for some buildings that can contain units while still letting those units attack. But true you would need some other mechanics along side it.

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