Author Topic: Kemeo's Battle build corner  (Read 5215 times)

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Offline Kemeo

Kemeo's Battle build corner
« on: July 23, 2015, 09:35:24 am »
Battle build V2 (Sanda panda battle SFX Edition)
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https://www.dropbox.com/s/oi61km39dzyvj8u/SFX%20Test%201-2-3.rar?dl=0
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Disclaimer: this build/thread is entirely dedicated to the battle aspect of Sierra Ops. The idea is
to quickly test the features and give feedback to help us better improve the battle system aspect
of the game. The build will instantly put you into battle mode battling a set number of enemies,
with a set number of allies and escorts.

Default keyboard commands:
- Keyboard commands:
  - F1-F3 Eneygy allocations mode, Platform Mode, Target mode
  - Target Mode
     - 1-10 weapon groups
     - Q,W,E,R,T Projectile,Drone,Ships,Debris,Structure target types
  - Allocations mode
     - QWE Increase EN Alloc for (Weapon,Shields,Engine)
     - ASD Decreases EN Alloc for (Weapon,Shields,Engine)
     - ZXCVB Abilities shortcut button 1-5
  - Platform mode (No shortcut keys have been assigned yet)

New features on V2:
- New weapon and explosion sfx
- Platform mode is now fully functional
Refer this picture for a brief tutorial on how it works:
http://puu.sh/lqF0M/c41f58f9ea.png

Any comments/criticism and suggestions are most welcome, just try to limit it to the battle build/ gameplay aspect.
This will not be the last build so long as comments/interest keeps coming.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2015, 01:54:24 am by Kemeo »

Offline Marx-93

Re: Kemeo\'s Battle build corner
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2015, 02:19:53 pm »
Well, quick first impressions!

First of all, the whole targeting and everything has improved a lot, I at last know what I'm doing and if it does it or no. The zoom things is still a problem though, at least with a battlefield so big, at the beginning I didn't even realized I had more units, and had to use the tab to find them. A proper zoom would need to show you all of your units and at least 60% of the enemy (not to mention, some of your weapons range is so big you don't even cover it with the maximum zoom). Not only that, the arrows don't work on command mode, which is very cumbersome.

The combat feels a little rusty still. My fellow units died very fast, strange specially as one had shields. I'll try to save them on my next play, but starting far away from the Sierra and in range of enemy fire leaves them very vulnerable to enemy barrages (they have a lower number of point defence guns so the missiles and drones hurt them a lot). This basically left the fight as long fight of launching missiles, intercept them and pray that they don't. While for a moment I though that Enemy concentration would make it an eternal fight, some missiles managed to slip in and slowly grind down the enemy Marduks. A soon as you manage to damage one of the Marduks enough some of their flak will be gone, which makes it finishing it easier. Concentrating fire and managing the shield (the Sierra wiped out enemy drones and missiles almost effortlessly), I managed to bring all the Marduks down. The Overlords were a little trickier, as like the Sierra they had excellent point defense guns and intercepted almost all the missiles. Trying to approach to find if being nearby managed to reduce the number of missiles they intercepted, I however found their point defence guns were brutal. While grinding down the shield I didn't realized it, but after it they wiped the Sierra out in 5 seconds, and I still had over half of the blue hull remaining. I don't know if it's intended or a remain from the OP CIWS days, but it's a little bullsh*t Carriers are a lot better at close combat than the Sierra.

For the rest, nice but still a little unpolished. The camera still annoys me, and it was the only thing that lagged (not only it didn't work on command mode, sometimes it acted with delays on real time), but the system looks nice. I have some small grips on the keyboard commands, namely that the numeric keypad doesn't work for the numbers, and that the weapon's range and command mode commands are a little too far of the rest. With one hand on the mouse, I would like to at least have the weapons range command more near.

Updated: July 23, 2015, 02:43:15 pm
EDIT: Okay, at the second try I managed to wipe them out and leave with my three units alive. With the Lapis unit's missiles handling the later part of the fight was a lot easier, so no need to go nearby with the Sierra (not that I was going to after last time). The first time I missed that the Lapis had the energy-bar thing like the Sierra, so putting a lot more on shields and weapons let it survive more easily. However it just seems that a more defensive approach was all that was needed; simply go behind the Sierra and let it become your shield. On that note, this time the Sierra was oddly a more vulnerable to missiles and drones, probably because it was perpendicular to the enemy fire, to act as shield of the two other units, which made the missiles and enemy drones more spread out and harder to intercept. Oh, and the camera still lags and it's definitely the most annoying thing.

Battle assessment B... I suppose I'll try later to reach A?
« Last Edit: July 23, 2015, 02:43:15 pm by Marx-93 »
Why can only the evil have empires, power and majestic theme music? I reclaim the possibility of creating the Federal-democratic-free Empire! A (democratic) tyranny fueled by the Power of Love!

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Offline Kemeo

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2015, 04:13:57 pm »
Actually the battle assessment is still not calculated correctly (Calculations still need tweaks). Hahaha.

Did you use the command mode a lot? or just take pot shots at them in real-time (which is quite a feat,if you did it that way)
How was the overall feel? Was the combat chaotic? since you had to juggle around multiple units. You can actually have up
to 4 escorts during a battle in the future, that and there would be deploy-able platforms from the Sierra too. I'am worried that
the player might get confused a lot with so many things to juggle around.

The 2 escorts in this scenario are meant to be fragile, however they move a LOT faster than Sierra. My idea was to have the player
use the way-point system to make the escorts move around evading stuff.

Camera buttons not working during command mode is probably a bug. The Carrier CIWS probably bugged out too if it cut you like swiss
cheese within 5 seconds. XD

I think I'll just have the max zoom out option to cover the whole battlefield, regardless of field size.

Offline Marx-93

Re: Kemeo\'s Battle build corner
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2015, 05:24:50 pm »
At the beginning, when I didn't know which units I had and where the enemies were, yeah, it was a tad chaotic. The second time, knowing where everything was going and using the command mode it was lot better. 4 Escorts seems adequate, 2 seem small when you get used to it, though if the 4 also have Luminosov particles, juggling 5 bars can get a little complex. Overall, I think once the camera is fixed (zoom, more smooth, etc) the feeling will be quite nice.

I used the command mode mostly at the beginning, to plan the collocation of units, but after the raper units are defeated I normally stop using it, as with the battle simply becomes an exchange of missiles and drags a little. I admit I didn't thought of actually planning a detailed movement to avoid missiles, but while that may work for the Lapis unit, the third ship only has "short" range (relatively) weapons, so I don't think you really can dodge missiles with it while also firing. I simply put it together with the Sierra to help it stopping missiles and drones. Luckily, the ranges of CIWS are good, so they can support each other (I wouldn't say it as taking pot shots but more as stay in a formation to protect them with the Sierra and shoot everything).

Oh, and is the whole drones coming from the Sierra thing implemented? I still see the Platform mode, but I Have no idea how to use it or even what it does (the numbers sometimes get lowered, but I don't see an effect).

Updated: July 23, 2015, 05:58:55 pm
Okay, checked it using a more mobile strategy and it worked very well with the Lapis (the shield helped a lot). The problem, and the reason why my ships died so quickly in mi first try, is that when you order anyone to attack a target, they will immediately stop what they're doing and remain still. When I used it in my first time, the ships remained still in their initial positions and quickly died. The second time I simply put them behind the Sierra. This third time I mostly took control of the Lapis and tried dodging missiles (this however meant that the Lapis attacked mostly randomly against the nearer units). It worked well, but the most unsuspected advantage is that it attracted drones and missiles away from the Sierra, which let the latter missiles reach a lot more easily; the Marduks were wiped away a lot more quickly thank to this, but the last one managed to fit pretty well between the Overlords and thus create another big flak barrier, so in the end it took more or less the same time. I had to put some Luminosov particles on the thrusters though, and only the Lapis could really dodge, the third unit (do we have a name?) was more sluggish and had to stay with the Sierra until the end, when I made it advance to take the Overlords quicker. Oh, and their CIWS are definitely bugged, they took half the dark blue (the most armoured) upper right hull in 4 seconds when in a slip I put the 3rd unit on range. Overall, having one unit mobile like this is more fun, but it needs a heavy use of the command mode and even then I don't think I would take more than 1 or 2 with me. I see their advantages now though (and I got A in battle assessment, faulty calculation or not ;D)

Oh, and I forgot to ask. The green units are supposed to be NPC allies? I mean, I have no problem with them, but sometimes they get in the middle of your ships path and are not very smart. They work very well as meat shields though.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2015, 05:58:55 pm by Marx-93 »
Why can only the evil have empires, power and majestic theme music? I reclaim the possibility of creating the Federal-democratic-free Empire! A (democratic) tyranny fueled by the Power of Love!

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Offline Kemeo

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2015, 02:29:04 am »
Updated the first post with new battle build.

Audio guy wants to know if the new sfx are good so try to listen to them. (hence sfx edition) :D

Oh and try not to kill the first 2 enemies quickly as it will end the stage prematurely without the reinforcement spawn.

Offline Marx-93

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2015, 11:07:55 pm »
Kemeo, did you have that useful quick-list with all the commands around?

Last time I played I got the hang of it, but it's been 3 months so it has kinda disappeared out of my head.

Just played it once, things I've noticed:
-The Sierra seems a little stronger? I remember that in the first build it could get tricky if you didn't use the escorts well, here however it seemed that as long as you didn't restrain yourself the Sierra could finish the enemies a lot more quickly (I had to stop her to avoid killing the first two frigates before reinforcements came)
- I haven't heard much difference on SFXs, but I've only played once. I will play two or three times more focusing only on it.
- The platforms are nice, but there's no way to see their HP bar or weapons? I know they're supposed to be autonomously controlled, but like this you don't know if you're sending them to certain death or certain victory beforehand.
-Also, perhaps tying with: any kind of tooltip for weapons? Here there are 2 new ones, but I don't really get what they are, only that they seemed to have a big range and be very good at killing stuff
-Lastly, sometimes I saw my platforms suffering damage despite not being visibly hit by anything. Is there friendly fire or some kind of invisible bullet? Adding to that, damage numbers like to fly away even in command mode but i suppose that's normal.

Besides that, the commands, camera and battle itself is now a lot more smooth than before. Good work on that!
Why can only the evil have empires, power and majestic theme music? I reclaim the possibility of creating the Federal-democratic-free Empire! A (democratic) tyranny fueled by the Power of Love!

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Offline Kemeo

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2015, 02:02:05 am »
Updated the first post for the default keyboard commands:
You can access the tutorial slides by pressing the escape button and clicking on tutorial.

-Yep Sierra is much much stronger than the usual due to the new weapons. I just added them to test the sfx it is by no means the default weapon. It would have made the game a walk in the park lol.

- Do try to listen to them closely, I was talking to the audio guy and we're contemplating if the overall feel is legit enough to be called a strategy game with all the sfx flying around, or are the sfx too much that it drowns other stuff.

-HP bars on platforms huh, okay will keep that in mind.

-With the weapons I was thinking the dev screen was enough for the player to know what the weapon does since there would be a preview of it firing and parts descriptions as you assemble it. It just so happens I put a lot of new stuff here in Sierra on the go.

-There's no friendly fire, are you sure the drones aren't hitting it with something? (Are all the damage 1?) I might change the damage numbers so that they wouldn't fly away while on command mode.

*I knew you'd be my only tester hahaha
« Last Edit: November 20, 2015, 02:05:35 am by Kemeo »

Offline Marx-93

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2015, 04:28:49 pm »
-There's no friendly fire, are you sure the drones aren't hitting it with something? (Are all the damage 1?) I might change the damage numbers so that they wouldn't fly away while on command mode.

*I knew you'd be my only tester hahaha

Shh, you know Arraxis will probably give it a spin when he has time haha

Yeah, I saw one platform get a streak of 1 damage  in short bursts, but when i zoomed I saw nothing hitting it. It actually was the reason I asked for HP bars on them, because due to this I was confused how long it would resist. I will try to focus more on it now that I know there's no friendly fire.

On the numbers, no need to bother, I just found it funny. It may actually be better this way, to not clutter the screen.

And yeah, on weapons I though so too, but then mind you giving me a short intro? Now I'm curious...
Why can only the evil have empires, power and majestic theme music? I reclaim the possibility of creating the Federal-democratic-free Empire! A (democratic) tyranny fueled by the Power of Love!

Started writing. You can check it out here: Home

Offline Kemeo

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2015, 08:48:33 am »
And yeah, on weapons I though so too, but then mind you giving me a short intro? Now I'm curious...

Hmm okay I'll give a brief description on what is currently equipped.
Group 1: CIWS nuff said
Group 2: Kinetic cannons equipped with flak warheads has a bonus against drones and missiles
(probably a wee bit overpowered still against ships because of the splash damage)
Group 3: VLS missiles with mirv body, fires a missile that splits and homes around a target
Group 4: Rockets dumb missiles that doesn't home but fires en massed.

Sierra Ops weapon system are subdivided as follows:
1) CIWS (Close In Weapon System): Rapid firing weapons that are usually used for point defense.
2) Kinetic Cannons: mid tier weapons that deals good amount of damage but can missed depending on the distance with the target (capped at 70% miss chance)
3) Rockets: Artillery that fires multiple dumb-fire rocket ordinance that deals good damage but can be shot down and evaded.
4) Missiles: Artillery that has longer range than rockets and can home to the target can also be shot down.
5) Special: Special weapons are weapons not under the 4 categories above.

Offline Marx-93

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2015, 07:21:45 pm »
Been trying it again. The lack of BGM makes it easier to heard the SFX, but I kinda miss the battle theme...

Okay, first, i think I've found the source of that mysterious damage to my escorts. It seems they were Ares fighters. As their fire is "invisible", I thought they could damage you only when close, but they seem to be able to fire from surprisingly far (thus, from afar I didn't saw the fighter, and when I zoomed in I was too close to my ships and they died before reaching them): if instead of kamikazing at you they took hit and run tactics they could probably wipe you out...

The poor Defense platforms seem to struggle against it, specially if besides that there are missiles. Actually, the Sierra would too have a hard time killing them if you don't spend energy on rapid firing. Luckily, the don't do much damage, so I suppose the platforms use is to soak them for a while as you concentrate the fire on the mothership (not that they're trouble now with this OP Sierra)

Speaking of which, the platforms are good, but when choosing to deploy them, it seem the kinetic platforms have to be deployed one by one? It's weird though, because then you can just switch the screen to the weapons or energy one, and then deploy another one. It is intended like this?

As a last advise, i would put damage on your ships and on the Ares ships on a different colour. Right now, when you have fighters around you you are surrounded by numbers, so it's hard to distinguish if you're being damaged or no (I mean, it will be solved once the platforms have HP bars, but even then it helps). Right now you seem to have blue for damage, yellow for something i didn't quite catch on (saw a few times on the corner of my eyes, couldn't catch it) and red for misses. Maybe switching it around a little and add green or white?

Small list of bugs I found:

1) The tutorial slides don't appear on the menu
2) If you allocate your energy on something, if you later remove it you won't recover it on your bar. This also includes skills like the Harbinger cannon. I don't know how the whole skills thing is supposed to work though, and I could spend all my energy simply selecting the first multiple times (which I did, to no visible effects?) or the last (which I suppose strengthened my shield considerably? I didn't need to drop it)
3) Selecting 0 weapon group automatically erases all your previous targets on the 1-10 groups: while I can of understand what you're doing (the group 0 applies what it has to all, and since when you click it has nothing selected is in theory doing its work), I can see it as a small source of frustration later on
4) Selection on enemy ships (to see their status) sometimes works, sometimes doesn't. It's a little troublesome, because sometimes by annoyance you double click on them, which works always but
5) Pause (entering on command mode) just when a ship is exploding causes the SFX to stretch in a weird way, almost like it's repeating in an specially strange way
6) There are some problems with the zooms and the borders: for example, when one enemy appears just at the border and doesn't move (because you're pummeling him) it's impossible to zoom in. Moving and zooming around can still be a little bumpy, specially when you're combining booth (zooming while moving) but it's a lot smoother than last time.

And now for the SFXs themselves. 

I liked the explosions, specially when there's the crackling noise of electronic components overloading (that small detail was very cool in my eyes). The missiles launching are also good: specially the ones that split in the middle (bit of a shame that you have to kind pursue them to hear it). The kinetic sounds are a tad weaker in my opinion: they sound fine but they a little bit of "humpf". Not bad, but not that satisfying too. The impacts on ships (of misisles, cannons, etc) were kinda regular too, but I suppose they work as a build up for the big explosion. The ones that is the worst in my opinion is the CIWS. It's probably the hardest one too, as being a weapon that's almost constantly firing you probably hear it constantly during any battle (so it can't be too intense or annoying), but right now I feel it a bit dis-coordinated? I mean, as if I heard 2 shots but saw 3. Given the huge amount of fire they send I would go for a faster rate.
Why can only the evil have empires, power and majestic theme music? I reclaim the possibility of creating the Federal-democratic-free Empire! A (democratic) tyranny fueled by the Power of Love!

Started writing. You can check it out here: Home

Offline Kemeo

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2015, 11:53:26 pm »
Lol I might need to adjust the range of the drones for that one. As for the flight pattern, I dunno if making them harder to hit is a good idea. My plan was for them to overwhelm the player with numbers, making them harder to hit might make them too op.

Well the defense platforms weren't made to engage the enemy directly, they're like additional weapon slots that are outside the ship. Hence the feature where you could attach platforms to allied units and they follow it around.

The deploying one at a time and switching is a bug, there was supposed to be a limit cap depending on the sierra stat limiting the number of platform you can deploy at any given time guess it needs a check when switching the ui back and forth for that.

I'll think about color coding the damage text.


Thanks for testing and listing out the bugs much appreciated. I'll just forward your comments on the sfx to our audio guy.

One thing though what did you mean by the tutorial slides not appearing on the menu I pressed escape and click the tutorial button and the tutorial appeared, it does have a bug though when you click to remove a tutorial slide and the cursor happens to be over a button.

Offline Marx-93

Re: Kemeo's Battle build corner
« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2015, 07:12:36 am »
Lol I might need to adjust the range of the drones for that one. As for the flight pattern, I dunno if making them harder to hit is a good idea. My plan was for them to overwhelm the player with numbers, making them harder to hit might make them too op.

Ah, it wasn't a suggestion, more of a reflexion that if they acted like that it would make them too op (like you said). As of right now they're flying patterns are good, they already dodge a fair lot of intercepting fire just by their speed.

One thing though what did you mean by the tutorial slides not appearing on the menu I pressed escape and click the tutorial button and the tutorial appeared, it does have a bug though when you click to remove a tutorial slide and the cursor happens to be over a button.

At least in my battle build, when I opened the menu with esc and click the tutorial button nothing appeared . I'll check it again later if maybe if was some kind of weirder bug.
Why can only the evil have empires, power and majestic theme music? I reclaim the possibility of creating the Federal-democratic-free Empire! A (democratic) tyranny fueled by the Power of Love!

Started writing. You can check it out here: Home

 

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