Cruiser Command

Cruiser command is a cooperative map between two teams. Simply put, each team controls one battlecruiser and the goal is to kill the opponent's battlecruiser.


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Does this sound like a good idea?
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 Post subject: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:18 pm 
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Proposal: Fewer asteroid clusters that each contain more asteroids.

So in another thread I talked about how CC gets stale for me and mostly mentioned mechanical things like lousy controls and chores. But I knew there was something more; I just couldn't put my thumb on it. But today I was thinking about it and here's the main thing I've come to:

- Lack of countering and strategy choice
Which is caused by:
- Upgrade path decided almost entirely on what minerals you get, which you don't have much choice in
- Lack of effective counter strategies (Though this is getting better)
- Difficulty in scouting what enemy has and obtaining information

Because this game is in Starcraft 2, I will explain what I mean by comparing the above bullet points to SC melee. In melee, strategy path is dependent on resource types just as in CC, but in melee you can actually choose your resource types. If you want to go a path that is vespene heavy, you can mine vespene or if you want minerals you can keep more workers on minerals and slow the vespene mining. in CC it's hard to deliberately mine a specific resource type, especially with ai miners and before scan is researched. Additionally, in melee you can scout your enemy and see what they are mining. Did they 2 gas early? 3 racks before gas? This information helps you get a handle on your opponent's plan. However, in CC the extent of scouting hardly gets past enemy BC location and primary weapon type. If you're lucky you might get a click on the enemy BC and get a glimpse of hull and energy. And lastly, even if you go through all the trouble to gain a tidbit of information on your enemy's upgrade path, what can you do to counter? Usually the only counter is the same thing as what the enemy has but slightly higher uprade level. But in melee you can actually come back if you're behind by producing an army that is less expensive than your opponent's but is superior due to countering. As I said countering is getting better in CC but it still has a long way to go.

So, how would the proposal of Fewer asteroid clusters that each contain more asteroids help fix these problems?

Well, you would have larger regions of asteroid types, making it easier to scout out locations of specific resource types. Human miners could intentionally go grab a specific resource type or BC could move adjacent to it and spur A.I. miners to mine it. So that's part 1: choosing your resource types. So now that you've scouted the resource fields, take asteroid field symmetry into consideration. You will now be able to watch what your enemy mines by watching minimap pings or ss scouting. That will give you a big hint on what upgrade path they are going. This might help give wraiths some identity back (which I think whytedragon was the one that mentioned lack of ss identity) because the wraith's miner ping and speed would be useful for scouting enemy resource income. So that's part 2: scouting enemy resources. Now the last and crucial piece is countering, which, unfortunately, is an entirely different issue and can't be fixed by this proposal. Without that the change in this proposal is a bit useless, but, countering is getting better so I posted this. Bottom line, I see potential for much more depth in this area of the game with some basic tweaks.

A couple of things to note:
- I'm only talking about :y: :b: :r: , not :g: .
- I acknowledge that you might spawn a good distance away from the nearest field of one of the 3 basic resource types, making purchases of items costing some amount in each of the 3 very difficult. However, nearly all the early game purchases: ss upgrades, tier 1, and additional miners only cost amounts in 2. Plus as I said, it would be easy to intentionally go out and mine a specific resource type.
- Another (probably positive) side effect would be more ship movement early game and probably more engagements.

Thanks for reading; votes and replies are appreciated.


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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2015 6:08 pm 
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First impression is that it would make chompers super effective.

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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2015 6:55 pm 
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Siretu wrote:
First impression is that it would make chompers super effective.


This, considering chompers are already quite strong would be bad

id be OK with less asteroids/minerals in general though (require more early-game scouting for fields)

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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2015 1:13 pm 
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To be honest, I would actually prefer the reverse scenario if we're going to outright alter asteroid density.

More fields with a smaller number of asteroids. And there are several factors to this;

1) Overlapping fields becomes less critical when making 'big finds.' Or rather, the likelihood of many fields overlapping becomes less likely.
2) Mineral type distribution. To my understanding, particular fields are weighted towards primarily one resource type. With a larger sample set, it's harder to get only a singular mineral type to be noticeably available.
3) Decrease in dead space. Flying for nearly an entire minute without finding anything is frustrating.
4) This promotes a sort of 'immobile' game design where you find a large field and then you camp it until you're done. Cruiser command should be a mobile game.
5) I do not believe this will be as big a push towards scouting as you make claims for it to be. I feel like countering based upon resource distribution is a moot point because ultimately, how those resources are spent becomes exceedingly vague. There's a good number of ways a team can use red -- missiles, small ships, tier upgrades, laser upgrades, kinetic upgrades... knowing that will not truly give any further understanding of a team.

Larger, more sparse fields pretty much will create the opposite effects of most of the above.

You could also argue that this makes resources suddenly really easy to find, but in my opinion it simply means there will be a few, large, desirable clumps with a lot of 'smaller finds' that might act as a small appetizer. Moreover, it creates the possibility of two contrasting types of economic games where there are a larger number of 'clumped fields' by consequence of chance overlaps and another where all of the resources are instead spread sparsely. Fewer, more clumped fields means everyone will always chomp as soon as possible, always; that sort of 'repetitive gameplay' you're trying to fend off.

... I would still like to see a check that prevents asteroids from spawning next to the battlecruiser, however.


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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2015 7:20 pm 
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Siretu wrote:
First impression is that it would make chompers super effective.


I'm not quite sure how they would be more effective than they are now. As of now, when a chomper is launched you generally already know what resource types you're going to pick up because it's right by the BC and miners have likely already started mining from it.

whytedragon wrote:
To be honest, I would actually prefer the reverse scenario if we're going to outright alter asteroid density...More fields with a smaller number of asteroids.


So this would be like Rainbow Asteroids then. Playing a few games on Rainbow Asteroids mode is partially what gave me the idea. I realized how boring it is when there is a steady flow of each type, no scouting for certain resource types, and not much point in moving BC.

whytedragon wrote:
3) Decrease in dead space. Flying for nearly an entire minute without finding anything is frustrating.


Not quite sure what this has to do with dead space.

whytedragon wrote:
4) This promotes a sort of 'immobile' game design where you find a large field and then you camp it until you're done.


Oh okay, I think I get what you guys are thinking now: massive dense clumps of asteroids rather than a bit more spread out like it is right now. That's not what I pictured. I pictured nearly the same asteroid distribution (it would look the same on minimap) but resource types distributed differently. Like sort of the opposite of Rainbow Asteroids mode. I suppose I mistitled the thread then. For example, a small section of the map might look like this:

Currently:
..... :b: ...... :b:
.. :r: .... :r: ..... :b: .... :y:
:r: ... :b: ....... :b:
..... :r: ..... :b: ......... :y:
..... :b:

....... :r: ..... :y:
. :b: ... :r:

My proposal:
..... :r: ...... :b:
.. :r: .... :r: ..... :b: .... :b:
:r: ... :r: ....... :b:
..... :r: ..... :b: ......... :b:
..... :r:

....... :b: ..... :b:
. :b: ... :b:


(Note if you're viewing this on a phone the picture is probably messed up)

On the top picture, you might come in from the right side thinking it's loaded with yellow but find out it just a couple of troll asteroids. This happens a lot and it's really annoying. However, on the bottom picture, if you're going for red or blue or both you can move your BC to this area and get what you're going for. In the top picture, even if you weren't fooled by the troll yellows you still likely don't know what at least half the field is, making it hard to intentionally go for a specific resource. Lastly, consider these as spawn locations. If you spawned in the top one, you could camp for quite awhile because you have enough of each resource to get a decent amount of upgrades. However, the bottom one you would need to mobilize to go find some yellow.

whytedragon wrote:
5) I do not believe this will be as big a push towards scouting as you make claims for it to be...[because] ultimately, how those resources are spent becomes exceedingly vague.


It's really not that vague because certain resource types are used for certain upgrade types. It doesn't tell you everything, but it hints and additional scouting will confirm.

For example, if I'm playing SC melee and I see a Zerg player mining lots of gas, that doesn't tell me what unit he might be going for. Could be Mutas, Infestors, Ultras, idk. But it certainly rules out things like Queen/Zergling. Now let's say, upon additional scouting I notice 2 Spires. Now that definitely narrows it way down. The only reason for 2 spires is many air upgrades. Could be corruptor/brood lord, but definitely air and I can start countering.

It would be the same in CC. You mentioned red; red is mostly used for (movement) speed and weapons. If I were captain and I noticed the enemy mining lots of red, that narrows it down. Doesn't tell the whole story but narrows it down. Now if I were to scout and see early penta burst, I can assume lasers are being invested in and are going to be very strong. Yes, it could be missiles or enhanced stabilizers, but typically lots of money goes towards BC's main weapon (laser/kinetics). As of right now, I could counter by going for kinetics bleedthrough and damage and enhanced stabilizers (I could move to stay out of range of lasers and gradually deal hull damage with kinetics), but because of the current mineral distribution it would be too difficult to intentionally go for the resources I need.

slapshot wrote:
id be OK with less asteroids/minerals in general though (require more early-game scouting for fields)


I agree. This also means that all asteroids will get depleted sooner, which will start the phase of "asteroid fields being spawned somewhere in space" sooner. This is my favorite phase of the game because during this phase you can actually intentionally mine specific resource types. In Korea, games often reach this phase and this is when countering starts to happen.

whytedragon wrote:
... I would still like to see a check that prevents asteroids from spawning next to the battlecruiser, however.


Me too.


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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2015 6:33 am 
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Ah, I see. Sorry, this one line was completely misleading, especially as it was left to stand entirely on its own;

Puppetbones wrote:
So, how would the proposal of Fewer asteroid clusters that each contain more asteroids help fix these problems?


... if it was somewhat like the resource diagram you put below, I could understand that sort of shift; that makes a lot more sense.

However, that also worries me still. I feel like the premise under which your idea works is in that which you know where each resource type is to an extent, and 'scouting' comes from understanding here your enemy is mining. Let me tell you this -- nearly all of the most frustrating, annoying games I've had in higher end CC games have all come from that frustrating concept of 'not being able to find that one type of resource.' This would become even more of an issue with this sort of issue I feel like -- and more than that, AI mining would suddenly become completely stupid, as they'd basically find a field and only mine one resource type for the next 10 minutes. You could argue that you can simply designate the miner AIs to only mine one resource type, but that often results in some pretty stupid AI choices and even some bugs.

Also, a lot of the countering comparisons you provide through SC2 utilize a lot of supplementary information such as buildings created. Moreover, you've also chosen the race that is most adaptable in terms of production when the two other counterparts are a lot more transparent due to their unit production buildings. CC doesn't offer as much of that supplementary information -- hardened shields? Essentially invisible. Energy Production? Essentially invisible. BC laser damage? Essentially invisible. A majority of CC upgrades revolve around 'number alterations,' which makes them very difficult to properly scout by visual inspection. There are a few exceptions like Kinetics / Lasers / Tractor / Warp / Engine Boost, but 90% of the potential resources you could spend in resources may as well be invisible.

... let me make something clear fast. I do enjoy those moments in the game where you actually have to go out and seek a particular type of resource rather than simply having rainbow fields always available to you. I like the idea you're putting forward. But I feel like there are a lot of existing issues that would arise by consequence -- Miner AIs and Impossibly Hidden fields. Starcraft 2 is an awkward comparison because if you decide to mine a particular resource type, you can make that alteration at a moment's notice. However, in CC, you have to find the resources. Depending on this is handled, this could easily create a situation where every game you end up struggling in order to find appropriate splashes, and where Miner AIs are made completely undesirable. If we were to implement this sort of mechanic, I would like to see the following things implemented alongside it;
  • Innate Miner Scan - Because mineral distribution would be as absolute as you're suggesting, I feel as if it would almost be necessary to have this ability outright.
  • Miner AI Improvements - No need to say much else here -- they're completely retarded when you designate them to mine different resource types.
  • Forced Mineral Spread / Overlap Prevention - Your idea would be rendered fairly moot if fields of different colors were allowed to overlap.
Furthermore, I would also like to see that these 'clumps' of a single resource type you describe aren't done to an excessive extent -- otherwise we'll end up with the simple situation of spending an entire game without being able to find the appropriate resources.

... only under these stipulations could I see this idea working out in a positive light.


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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2015 11:33 am 
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WhyteDragon wrote:
CC doesn't offer as much of that supplementary information -- hardened shields? Essentially invisible. Energy Production? Essentially invisible. BC laser damage? Essentially invisible. A majority of CC upgrades revolve around 'number alterations,' which makes them very difficult to properly scout by visual inspection. There are a few exceptions like Kinetics / Lasers / Tractor / Warp / Engine Boost, but 90% of the potential resources you could spend in resources may as well be invisible.


This is something that I think would be worth changing, i.e. slightly alter the laser hue per upgrade (or it's movement speed), make ships look "bulkier" or have more "engine glow" when the thrusters are upgraded, etc.

that said, sometimes in sc2 you don't notice upgrades until they are too late - blink stalkers, psi storm, stim, concussion shells, ghost cloak, yamato, fast burrowing, neutral parasite, burrow/move while burrow, fast hydras, etc. (although even with all of those, you have a chance of seeing the tech building researching it, and the basic damage/armor upgrades are especially visible)

and while I don't particularly like an innate miner scan (as it removes an upgrade), I do think it would be useful, so perhaps it can be made so it only reveals half the asteroids (i.e. 50% chance of not changing color) until upgraded or similar (or just give it n levels and have the range/cooldown/etc. change with each upgrade)


Puppetbones wrote:
Fewer asteroid clusters that each contain more asteroids


you don't see how this would buff chompers?

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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2015 12:11 pm 
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Puppetbones wrote:
Oh okay, I think I get what you guys are thinking now: massive dense clumps of asteroids rather than a bit more spread out like it is right now. That's not what I pictured. I pictured nearly the same asteroid distribution (it would look the same on minimap) but resource types distributed differently. Like sort of the opposite of Rainbow Asteroids mode. I suppose I mistitled the thread then. For example, a small section of the map might look like this:

Currently:
..... :b: ...... :b:
.. :r: .... :r: ..... :b: .... :y:
:r: ... :b: ....... :b:
..... :r: ..... :b: ......... :y:
..... :b:

....... :r: ..... :y:
. :b: ... :r:

My proposal:
..... :r: ...... :b:
.. :r: .... :r: ..... :b: .... :b:
:r: ... :r: ....... :b:
..... :r: ..... :b: ......... :b:
..... :r:

....... :b: ..... :b:
. :b: ... :b:
Apparently that's not what he meant, Slap.

... also, as clarification, that's not what we meant Puppet -- that's what we thought you meant


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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2015 3:41 am 
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slapshot wrote:
Puppetbones wrote:
Fewer asteroid clusters that each contain more asteroids



you don't see how this would buff chompers?


whytedragon wrote:
... also, as clarification, that's not what we meant Puppet -- that's what we thought you meant


So we basically had a misunderstandingception due to my explanations being poor. :lol: This happens a lot; I'm a very visual thinker and have trouble communicating my thoughts so don't take it personally. But with that I will now make it crystal clear:

My proposal is to have resources distributed in a way to where you could intentionally mine specific resource types and scout what your enemy is mining. My idea on how to do that was having larger regions of specific mineral type deposits. If you were to take :y: for example, in the current version of CC you would have at least a dozen (probably a lot more) little patches of :y: throughout the map, making it hard to focus mining on that particular resource. With my proposal it would be the same asteroid count but all located in roughly 8 patches.

When I said "Fewer asteroid clusters that contain more asteroids" I was thinking more about how the trigger could be written. To clarify this, I will make up some definitions for terms:

Cluster: a small group of asteroids of all the same resource type.
Clump: multiple asteroid clusters adjacent to each other or overlapping.

Currently, asteroid clusters tend to be grouped and form clumps in some locations and completely open areas in others. The clumps formed tend to consist of roughly 3-8 clusters and 10-40 asteroids. In my proposal, the size of these clumps would stay roughly the same, only the cluster size would change. So now instead of 3-8 clusters you have 1-3, thus likely containing 1-2 resource types, and even if it has all 3, the 3 clusters probably have distinct locations.

whytedragon wrote:
AI mining would suddenly become completely stupid

whytedragon wrote:
a lot of the countering comparisons you provide through SC2 utilize a lot of supplementary information such as buildings created... CC doesn't offer as much of that supplementary information


Yes, as I said in the original post some other things would need to be changed to make this useful, but I thought they were meant for other threads so I left them out. But since it appears I couldn't leave them out, I might as well address them here.

Starting with Ai Miners, I recently posted a thread about them in the Bugs section so I'm not going to restate specific problems there. But I will say that miners crashing ships, especially if enemy uses kinetics, and sometimes mining absolutely nothing is a much bigger problem than mining too much of one resource. I acknowledge that this proposal makes AI miners less useful, but if Erik gets around to fixing the many serious issues with AI miners and implements this proposal, they will still be far more useful than they are now. And as I said before, you can move the BC to an asteroid cluster to provoke AI to mine it. And if it's really necessary that the AI stop mining what they are currently mining and immediately mine that resource, it would be easy to order a miner or two to return home while you're fiddling with consoles to move the BC, and then order them to mine again once you get there. No need to even uncheck boxes of certain resource types.

So now to the scouting issue: yes scouting is easier in sc2 then in CC but I don't think it's as unfruitful as you say it is.
whytedragon wrote:
hardened shields? Essentially invisible. Energy Production? Essentially invisible. BC laser damage? Essentially invisible.

Not exactly. For example if I see penta burst I can be pretty sure money is being invested in laser damage, not kinetics. That can be countered. Although it could be my enemy is bluffing and actually going kinetics. There is sort of a mind reading element there. And some of the other things you mentioned - hardened shields, energy production, can be deduced. If you click on the enemy BC, you can see hull, shields, and energy (and roughly the rate of change in energy). Let's say I am playing my proposed version and I were to see (via shields number) that the enemy has well upgraded fusion core, a little bit of hull upgrades, and while scouting their resource mining I see that they have high miner/chomper count and relatively moderate amount of :y: and :b: mined, I can assume they are lacking in hardened shields, repair bots, probably dont have utility tier upgrades, etc. I could be wrong but it's likely a correct assumption...


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 Post subject: Re: Asteroid/Mineral Distribution
PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2015 3:53 am 
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(continued from last post; exceeded character limit)
But I do agree that even with my proposed idea scouting is still quite difficult. And, I am all for ideas like:
slapshot wrote:
This is something that I think would be worth changing, i.e. slightly alter the laser hue per upgrade (or it's movement speed), make ships look "bulkier" or have more "engine glow" when the thrusters are upgraded, etc.

Stuff like this would be great; the only current example of model changes like this I can think of is loading the yamato. I might also add that stuff like mining laser being the color of the asteroid it's mining would make scouting more fruitful. The mining boost could be a different color than any of the asteroids. You could play some mind games with scouting opponents with this too.

And I forgot to add to the asteroid cluster/clump part:
The asteroid clusters don't necessarily have to be roughly circular shaped. I envisioned them being sometimes quite oblong, maybe shaped like a "C" or an "L", so when placed adjacent to other clusters it would form the same natural looking shape in the clump that is does now; not distinct circular shapes making the clump look like 2 or 3 balls sitting next to each other.


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