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August 26, 2019, 04:56:40 am
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News: Paul & Fred have reached a settlement with Stardock!

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1  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: MegaMod: Hard/Easy/Nomad Mode balancing on: August 24, 2019, 11:34:38 pm
Hard mode seems like something to could use a lot of iteration to find just the right level of challenge/misery.


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- Slylandro Probes dodge projectiles

Ohhhh dear. It's the super melee Slylandro, invading the campaign. This one might be more fun for people if it has more crew instead of that.


If I were to write some alternate AIs or ship variants, would you use them? I doubt I have the time for yet another Star Control project, but you never know.
2  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: SCII balancing "cracked" on: August 24, 2019, 11:12:55 pm
How many ships in total would need these AI and/or physical behavior changes? How many ships are already well balanced and played competently by the AI?

If we're just talking AI tweaks for the campaign, not too many ships...

Umgah could stand to use its cone for protection against long range missiles a bit better. They let some easily-stopped attacks slip through. It's otherwise a great opponent.

Ur-Quan fighters should be less of a liability. Give them collision proofing against asteroids and enemy ships, and longer fuel reserves to return to the Dreadnought with. They don't need to be immune to attrition tactics, but they shouldn't be going kersplat left and right so much. No AI changes needed.

Kohr-Ah doesn't need to change, yet the amount of wasted potential with this ship is staggering. Why, why does it run straight after everything it fights? It should behave more dynamically. I say that, yet they could very easily become way too difficult for most players with the right (i.e. wrong) playstyle. This would a be a low-priority ship to work on.

Orz AI is terrible, but fixing it isn't important since fights against them are optional and comparatively uncommon.

Thraddash could use just a bit more rate-of-fire and crew or something like that, no AI changes needed for them.

And VUX (already discussed) is the one real offender in the midst of this.


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Are there already plans for refactoring ship physics and AI into an Entity-Component-System model and/or moving ship data and AI behavior scripts out of the C files?

I wouldn't know what that means. It's doubtful anyone has a project like that in the works, core team or otherwise.
3  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: SCII balancing "cracked" on: August 21, 2019, 08:47:31 am
Anyone feeling motivated to write some AI is welcome to jump in and give it a try. A good place to start: Turn VUX into an actual threat for the campaign.

Is that possible when the player has cheap, perennial Cruiser production?  Against the Cruiser, is the Intruder good for more than just nuclear target practice in network play?

Er no, not really, come to think of it. There's a way to play that will let VUX win once in a while, with no help from the VUX warp-in ability. The laser can shoot down nukes with some skill, and you can get the Intruder drifting around looking for the planet while trying to defend yourself. After a lot of stalling, slingshot off the planet to chase down Earthling. Which they can still avoid, sometimes entirely, and sometimes they'll merely be grazed by the laser before slipping or bouncing away.

It would take ship buffs or some AI tuning with ship buffs to make VUX fit in nicely. The goal wouldn't be to make VUX deadly, just make it a fight. Even Umgah is a fight.
4  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: SCII balancing "cracked" on: August 18, 2019, 06:39:26 am
Writing AI is said to be one of the most difficult parts of programming. There hasn't been much work done in this area by the fan community. I did a little for Project 6014 to get the Lurg Prawn to fight and made minor fixes to some of the core ships; e.g. stop Ur-Quan from launching fighters at cloaked Ilwrath. Anyone feeling motivated to write some AI is welcome to jump in and give it a try. A good place to start: Turn VUX into an actual threat for the campaign.
5  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: SCII balancing "cracked" on: August 16, 2019, 02:35:58 am
I think it might take a more multiplayer-active community.  It is not just the total hours needed to play every possible match up so many times for a decent sample size.  You would need to only consider the results of battles between top players. Further, you would need many dozens of consistent online players to know that your top players are experienced and well rounded in their play styles.

We had a playerbase for net melee for a few years. It was less than dozens playing at all hours, and it was over than a decade ago, but we had one.

I would worry that statistics based off games between net melee experts still wouldn't be that helpful. The top players all use Utwig as a Kohr-Ah counter, but that match-up doesn't go anywhere unless the Utwig player's blocking game is on point. It's a lot harder to pull off against a Kohr-Ah player, even a shoddy one, than the cyborg. We could list "Utwig hard-counters Kohr-Ah" using empirical evidence and the lower 50% of players might never be able to replicate that.
6  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: SCII balancing "cracked" on: August 12, 2019, 10:41:27 pm
i thought shiver already figured this out?

Shh! This video is super interesting. I also don't recall ever trying to map out the odds of every match-up in PvP, which would really be more of a "Shiver vs Gekko" map if such a thing were ever attempted.
7  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: New Mmrnmhrm theme extrapolated from their ditty on: July 04, 2019, 07:20:29 pm
There have been a few pretty good Mmrnmhrm themes in the past as well, one by TheMisterCat and one by Neonlare. Here is TheMisterCat's Mmrnmhrm track, hosted on PoNaF. I've lost track of the other one.
8  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion on: June 14, 2019, 04:34:16 am
Yes, this outcome is definitely for the best. The current state of things leaves me with a very uncomfortable question: Would I buy the next Star Control game that Stardock has in the pipe? I genuinely have no idea. As an old fan who's painfully aware of the details of the lawsuit, I feel like my answer should be "no". As a profoundly selfish person and as a gamer who just wants his entertainment, my answer should be "yes". Knowing that Brad Wardell tried to trick the core team into handing over rights to UQM, that should be a hard "no" again. Also knowing that every person I've ever met is screwed up in some fashion and being a big believer in forgiveness, there's more reason for "yes". The lawsuit's resolution seems perfectly tailored to make this choice difficult, at least for me. A question for later.
9  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion on: June 12, 2019, 06:11:28 pm
The source code for those two don't exist anymore, well, at least for SC1.
Brad says he still hasn't been able to find the source code for SC3 and it's looking like it also may have been lost.

Alas, the long-form of 'Daktaklakpak' may never be known.
10  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Balance Mod updated on: March 13, 2019, 09:44:13 pm
The only point value change was for Ilwrath, which got bumped up from 10 to 12. Although I did re-tune the ship's weapon (slightly shorter range & the diagonal flame spouts drain 1 extra energy per shot instead of 2), it probably should have been at that value all along. Mod Ilwrath has always been noticeably stronger than its vanilla counterpart.

I don't think any changes in this update alter the match-up dynamics enough to necessitate other point value changes.
11  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Balance Mod updated on: March 06, 2019, 09:37:26 pm
All this news circulating about Star Control got me messing with my old Super Melee mod again. Balance Mod was my attempt at fixing and improving UQM's combat for competitive PvP matches which began a little over 10 years ago from today. After some experimenting and tuning, I've updated it again. A theme of this update is reverting back to original game mechanics anywhere I can get away with it. Ur-Quan fighter craft no longer drain energy from the target they're shooting at - while there was a good reason for implementing that, it encroached on Chenjesu's design too much. Supox gets its old battery regen back, VUX limpets get their old duration back, Arilou's teleport burns 3 energy as before, and Shofixti's glory device can crack Chmmr satellites again. I restored Umgah's default, faster turn rate and instead impair the ship's turning while the ship's Antimatter Cone is active, which feels pretty good in-game.

I added something new as well: An 'aim-assist' for my favorite ship, the Melnorme Trader. This feature is optional and can be toggled on and off with the 'down' key, When toggled on, the ship sends out little holograms which trace the charge-up weapon's firing path. Being a specialized sharp-shooter, Melnorme has always been a difficult one to play. I hope this feature helps other players enjoy piloting the ship as much as I do. Cheers!

http://wiki.uqm.stack.nl/User:Shiver/Balance_Mod
12  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Swarming is broken on: January 29, 2019, 02:18:44 am
That can happen. I'm not disagreeing with you, but keeping multiple save files can prevent this type of problem. Lots of old games have to be played that way, unfortunately.


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I did kill quite a few and ran from many more, but it doesn't matter. Autopilot was already on before the first encounter.

You can break out of auto-pilot by using manual flight controls in hyperspace. It won't save you if you're already dogpiled like that, but you can maneuver around to avoid the start of a pile-up with some thinking ahead. I'm sure I've had to do just that several times in each of my playthrus of the game.
13  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion on: January 10, 2019, 07:32:13 am
SC:O was on Humble Bundle briefly for a few days. The screen cap was from someone who got the game during that window.
14  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion on: January 08, 2019, 11:06:27 am
That's a little joke, by the way, I haven't actually done that myself. The screenshot is from elsewhere. I meant to say that CeltricMinstrel's idea was something you could do on Humble Bundle just a few days ago.
15  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Stardock Litigation Discussion on: January 08, 2019, 11:02:14 am
I do kind of want to try SCO but I really don't want to give Stardock my money, so I dunno. Probably the only way I'd actually buy it would be in a Humble Bundle type situation that allows me to specify that all the money goes to charity (or other developers) instead of to Stardock.




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