Jump to content
  • Advertisement
Acharis

Semi abstract space combat with formations

Recommended Posts

For a 4X game in space. Sorry for quite an unsorted idea :) Also feel free to propose something different but similar.

Concept:

The player designs and produces battle groups (each composed of several ships), battle group is the lowest level operational unit (not indovidual ships inside the group), battle group always moves together, is disbanded together, fights together, can't be split or merged with another goroup, also it's damaged/destroyed together.

The battle group is produced as a whole and can sustain partial casualties (like 0.43 of battle group is destroyed, not individual ships in the group). So, it's always tracked like "you have 140.57 battle groups in this fleet" or something like that. If you have less than 1.00 battle groups it's treated as 0 (can't fight).

Battle group always fights a single enemy battle group (so it 1vs1). The outcome is "what percentage of battle group we lost and how much the enemy lost", for example "lost 0.14 battle groups, enemy lost 0.56 and the remaining 0.44 retreated".

Combat is fully automated (no player's input).

 

Example basic model:

Just to make it clear what I mean, totally the simpliest solution:

Each battle group has no ships, just a single number "power", when the battle groups meet each group adds d6 roll to the power and the one with the highest number is the winner. The casualties are based on the difference in the modified power score (total victory: we have no loses, enemy loses a lot; marginal victory: we have some loses, enemy has more loses; etc). During a space battle there are maximum 3 fights (3x 1vs1 combats with different groups facing each other), each side always puts their strongest group, in addition to casualties the side that sustined higher loses total is considered defeated and is forced to retreat to another space (or warp to homeworld/elsewhere if not possible).

 

Questions:

- how to improve the stuff posted above (it's an early unsorted idea)?

- how exactly the combat should work (1vs1)?

- how the combat on the higher level should work when many battlegroups met (for example the most trivial solution would be: fight 1vs1 randomly until one side is standing, but I hate it :))

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement

If each battlegroup can be damaged, you might want to show a few numbers. Number of Battle groups/Total Strength of Battlegroups. So if you had 10 half strength battle groups it would show 10/5.0.

I wrote a similar battle pairing system for an Exalted RPG troop fighting app where 100's of combatants fought each other and I had the computer roll everything out.  I rolled initiative for every combatant and when her initiative came up she first saw if she was already engaged. Otherwise she chose a target at random. She attacked one of those targets rolling to hit, and the target got a chance to parry or dodge. Then damage was applied if she actually hit. Damage applied could take out a combatant before they received a chance to fight back. It also dealt with wound penalties, gang up bonuses, and multi-action penalties.

Anyway the Battlegroup pairing could do something similar. Roll initative (if you want that to matter) then have free combatants engage opposing combatants. You could have combatant selection prefer less engaged combatants so if you had a 10/5.0 group and a 5/5.0 group fight each other, the pairing would wind up with five fights 2/1.0 engaging 1/1.0. Or you could do random target selection and get some more lopsided engagements.

I played some After the Empire the other day and it made me think of you and your cool 4X project. I thought to myself, I wonder how Acharis is doing? :) I'm happy to see you're still plugging away at it.

- Eck

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Eck said:

I played some After the Empire the other day and it made me think of you and your cool 4X project. I thought to myself, I wonder how Acharis is doing? :) I'm happy to see you're still plugging away at it.

Actually, I released it around 3 years ago :)

 

Now I'm trying to bit it from another angle, trying to invent something both more abstract and simplier (tracking every single ship was a nightmare). I wonder how to make something similar but with focus on a higher level of abstraction, instead of fleets, squadrons and ships something like fleets and battlegroups without simulating individual ships (since that's really not needed if you are the Emperor). But since ships are cool I thought about a batlte group as the lowest operational unit but internally such battle group could have ships as sort of attributes or perks, so you decide the composition of the group (design ships, decide the ratio of ships in a group, etc) but then it's all used only during combat (1vs1 battle group fights without tracking exact loses) and never even touched on the strategic and operational level.

I'm trying to forge out some mechanic that could achieve this.

Edited by Acharis

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congratulations on shipping your game! I've had Stellar Monarch on my wishlist for a while. :D I'll definitely be picking it up as soon as I get a little more free time. 

- Eck

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was thinking and actually the problem can be divided into two.

Strategic & operational level

Fleets and other formations are moved around the map and enganging each other. Those have "units" which is represented by a single number (like 140.56), then those can sustain casualties like 0.54.

What exactly is inside a "unit" is of no concern at this level. I think it could be done statistically, like "Fleet X has 150.04 units of which 54% are of the top tier Omega battle group, 26% of Excelsior type battle group and the rest 20% of the outdated Aegis Cruisers battle group".

Tactical level

First the battle group (unit) is "selected" from the formation (so from the above it has 54% chance for it to be Omega battle group). Then it fights 1vs1 with the enemy battle group selected (how exactly?).

Next the tactical level outcome needs to somehow relate (affect) the strategic/operational level (casualties, "winner" determined and possibly forcing the "loser" to retreat, etc).

 

What do you think about such system? Potencial problems/holes? Would it work, better idea, etc?

 

8 hours ago, Eck said:

Congratulations on shipping your game! I've had Stellar Monarch on my wishlist for a while. :D I'll definitely be picking it up as soon as I get a little more free time. 

- Eck

Thanks :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Advertisement
×

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

GameDev.net is your game development community. Create an account for your GameDev Portfolio and participate in the largest developer community in the games industry.

Sign me up!