Development Blog Update - Marine "Power Grid" design

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  • Silencer9Silencer9 Candidate for B.Sc. Join Date: 2003-08-05 Member: 18967Posts: 284Members, Reinforced - Shadow
    I think this idea is risky. For circa how many players at a time is NS2 going to be designed for? If you make power grids and multiple commanders you'll need really huge maps and up to 100 players in one game. The one requires the other. One lone commander cannot possibly manage 50 marines in a huge map, except he is a pro with dozens of unique scripts installed per map. (Which I think should not be necessary in order to be a good commander by the way) Be careful that by making more of everything, one game is actually one game, and does not turn out to be 3 independent fights in 3 different choke points in the map whichs participants don't notice the each 2 other fights whatsoever - I saw that happen in the UT2kX-series a lot. Your highest risk here is going through the work of making this system just to see that it does not work. Keep in mind what people liked about NS1 and try to respect it when trying something new, yet don't make a cluster###### of gameplay concepts which don't fit with each other. Not going to talk into detail here now untill I get to know more. :3
  • CrispyCrispy Jaded GD Join Date: 2004-08-22 Member: 30793Posts: 3,225Members, Constellation
    edited April 2009
    QUOTE(Silencer9 @ Apr 15 2009, 10:20 AM) »
    I think this idea is risky. For circa how many players at a time is NS2 going to be designed for? If you make power grids and multiple commanders you'll need really huge maps and up to 100 players in one game. The one requires the other.
    There is absolutely no basis to this argument. Whatsoever.

    Let's look at how many general areas a Marine Commander looks after in NS. I'll take Tanith as an example.

    Generally you're going to have structures to protect in the MS, a PG to Cargo, a PG to DBL or Waste and a PG to Chemical/Sat.

    That's 4 areas that 5 Marines and 1 Commander have to look after.

    --

    I think the way things would work would not be making the RTs hard to take down, but keeping them more or less the same and making the 'power' structures (e.g. the CCs) hard to take down. This means it's easy to deny a bit of res in a short time, but it takes a more dedicated assault to deny a lot of res and functionality.

    QUOTE(StixNStonz @ Apr 14 2009, 09:05 PM) »
    That looks like a standard CS map, not an NS map sad-fix.gif

    I hope this was just a test layout. I mean, with two hard chokepoints, you're looking at the level depth of Dust.
    Dust, probably one of the most acclaimed maps in level design, and also lacking depth apparently. You're misconstruing depth with simplicity. For example someone mentioned Go, a game that is incredibly simple in terms of its rules, but ludicrously deep in terms of its gameplay.

    I will say the layout does not look very exciting or balanced due to the hideous choke points (especially the one that links all the three major rooms in the North - lock down that and you basically win the game). But it's a test so I can live with that.

    ---

    Also don't forget that the 2nd Commander is optional. It might make sense to allow the first Comm to disable or enable the chair (an the chair automatically enables when the last commander leaves the chair).
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • king_yoking_yo Join Date: 2009-04-15 Member: 67192Posts: 38Members, WC 2013 - Shadow
    The more you give us news, the more I am afraid of what ns2 is going to be. I feel like you're killing everything I love in ns : the asymmetry (alien comm, marines buy their own weapons, marines need new CCs to tech up, they cant build everywhere), the RTS part of the game (It looks really too linear to me, I hope the comms arent there to drop buildings and meds only) and the offensive/defencive differences between marines and aliens (I mean that a new CC is like a new hive, and aliens have to "siege" it).

    It looks like a co_map but with the ns_territory mod. I like it, but I saw this mod more a "training mod" for new players than a real game.

    I hope the next new wont be that aliens have now humanoid form and can hold guns, and the game is now called Battlefield : Quake wars NS TERRITORY...

    But it still need to be play tested.
  • StixNStonzStixNStonz Join Date: 2006-11-06 Member: 58439Posts: 1,180Members, Reinforced - Shadow
    QUOTE (Crispy @ Apr 15 2009, 08:08 AM) »
    QUOTE (StixNStonz)

    That looks like a standard CS map, not an NS map sad-fix.gif
    I hope this was just a test layout. I mean, with two hard chokepoints, you're looking at the level depth of Dust.

    Dust, probably one of the most acclaimed maps in level design, and also lacking depth apparently. You're misconstruing depth with simplicity. For example someone mentioned Go, a game that is incredibly simple in terms of its rules, but ludicrously deep in terms of its gameplay.


    Dust was one of the most acclaimed maps for counter-strike. CS' gameplay encourages a small number of chokepoints which are around 7-10 seconds from either spawn. The game comprises either two objective locations via bomb sites (de_) or via hostage locations and rescue zones (cs_).

    Dust is perfectly geared towards CS gameplay. How does NS gameplay compare to that of CS? That would warrant an essay of indeterminable length. The map design follows suit.
    Professional Game and Level Designer, thanks to NS!
    Creator of Ns_Nexus (ns1); Main thread found here.
  • xtcmenxtcmen Join Date: 2004-04-20 Member: 28040Posts: 414Members
    edited April 2009
    Good idea, but I don't feel like playing 2 hour games.

    And to everyone saying it will lose the feel of "NS" well what do you want them to do? Its a new game, with a new feel and new flow. I would feel ripped off if NS2 was the same as NS1 with slightly modified buildings and weapons.

    Change is good, and besides this game will appeal to a lot more people. He's adding replay ability, and 3 tiers (at least I think 3) of upgrades. What more could you ask for. NS1 was the first contact, this game is the war.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
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  • BacillusBacillus Join Date: 2006-11-02 Member: 58241Posts: 2,700Members
    I'm a little surprised that people react to maps now. I knew that there will be huge cuts when they told about the removal of minimap and the 7-10 room maps. For a 10 room map that is supposed to be working without minimap that example looks quite good actually. The symmetrical general layout isn't nice of course, but the actual map layout shows quite good selection of routes and varying room layouts.
  • StixNStonzStixNStonz Join Date: 2006-11-06 Member: 58439Posts: 1,180Members, Reinforced - Shadow
    Wait, WHAT!? They're removing minimaps and dropping the overall map size?

    oh, dear...
    Professional Game and Level Designer, thanks to NS!
    Creator of Ns_Nexus (ns1); Main thread found here.
  • pSyk0mAnpSyk0mAn Nerdish by Nature Germany Join Date: 2003-08-07 Member: 19166Posts: 1,435Members, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Silver
    QUOTE (StixNStonz @ Apr 15 2009, 10:13 PM) »
    Wait, WHAT!? They're removing minimaps and dropping the overall map size?

    oh, dear...

    Yeah, looks like a co_nexus would have been much easier to port tounge.gif


    I'm also not sure about all those changes regarding ns2. I understand that there is a need for something new, also to get rid of the gameplay issues in ns1, but "1/3 old, 1/3 improved, 1/3 new" seems more and more like an empty phrase to me, tbh.
    I'm curious how the new gameplay is going to scale with the amount of players and if the smaller maps maybe feel too crowded, because after all I don't think people will stop prefering big (messy) servers over the smaller ones (with more decent rounds, imho).
    Still, I'm confident in the dev-team that they create a great game and that many will stick around despite having a few disappointments, when they miss their "old game".
    NS2 Map in progress, ns2_summit

    Spark tutorial for curved floors/corridors (included in the map thread in the last section of the 1st post)
  • BacillusBacillus Join Date: 2006-11-02 Member: 58241Posts: 2,700Members
    QUOTE (StixNStonz @ Apr 16 2009, 03:13 AM) »
    Wait, WHAT!? They're removing minimaps and dropping the overall map size?

    oh, dear...


    Just to recap this a bit...

    QUOTE (Flayra @ Nov 14 2008, 07:49 PM) »
    I haven't read through this whole thread but...I can tell you that the NS2 HUD will be extremely minimal. Less than NS1's and taking ideas from Call of Duty 4, TF2 and Mario Sunshine.

    Right now the only persistent HUD element for players on the ground is their resources. That could only display when you're near an armory - I think I'll try that now - but the minimap is gone for good I think. If you need a minimap, that means the levels aren't simple, well-lit or well-designed enough. Your health draws when it changes, and then fades away. If you are very hurt, your whole HUD pulses red, ala CoD4. Everything else only fades in when it changes or when you need it.

    That's the last dev comment I've seen on the minimap.

    I don't know if minimap refers just to the HUD map or the whole 'minimap' toggled by c on default or just the mini-sized map on your first person view. At least I connect the "well-designed and well-lit" description to the full screen minimap as the mini-minimap was hardly ever used for navigation anyway. There was also some mention about the map size being reduced to something around 7-10 rooms, but I can't find it right now.

    Both decisions are probably still open for changes, but I think the map example on the newspost is quite close to what you can expect to see based on the information.

    QUOTE (pSyk0mAn)
    I'm also not sure about all those changes regarding ns2. I understand that there is a need for something new, also to get rid of the gameplay issues in ns1, but "1/3 old, 1/3 improved, 1/3 new" seems more and more like an empty phrase to me, tbh.

    To be honest there has been so little talk about the actual gameplay that I can't say anything about the 1/3s yet. So far the macro scale gameplay seems to be almost 100% different though.

    I guess they're slowly shifting into more gameplay related newsposts now, so it might be best to wait a little longer before drawing any too solid conclusions.
  • ShadowOnTheSunShadowOnTheSun Join Date: 2009-04-10 Member: 67122Posts: 6Members
    guess it's time to start gathering a crowd to produce a more asymmetric, dynamic mod with the ns2 toolset, because the devs are about to destroy everything we loved about ns...
  • JibrailJibrail Join Date: 2009-04-16 Member: 67200Posts: 835Members
    edited April 2009
    Hi. first of all this is my first post in these forums but I have been here since the begening of time biggrin-fix.gif.I followed everything even months before the release of NS1 so its about time that i joined.
    I wanted to say that I like the new idea its fresh and diffrent from the first game but thats the hole point right?
    I do have to say that with all these changes the game needs allot of planning before going on with such gameplay mechanics the hole way. But I have faith in these guys and I think that they will pull it off and make NS2 even better than NS1.

    some notes about it.

    1.the flashing light thing in the rooms when nodes are attacked is just too much and will be annoying when as a marine getting attacked.

    2.Im not sure about how the marine team gets "money" to buy weapons and uppgrades does resurses get delt to each player and will there be kind of a bonus system like if a marine is killing khara or maybe taking out structures does that player get bonus points from killings + the "money" he is getting from RT allowing him to uppgrade faster ( kinda rewerding for playing good )?

    3.I like the idea of more commanders BUT i would like it to be like this

    1 primery MASTER commander and the rest have less control but also at the same time have a big impact on winning the match by maybe limiting them only to bulid small forward bases and drop health / ammo and maybe give each secondary commander One squad while the master commander controls more squads also easier interface as someone mentioned before for making it easier for new players to learn commanding.


    sorry for my bad english its because i dont live in the states i live in Europe wich brings me to my next question how can i buy the game when released cause i definitely want to be part of the BETA I mean will you be selling it through Steam?

    PS
    Its about time that we get another famous unknown worlds videocast biggrin-fix.gif Can't wait to see the cinematic footage and i do love the name Cinematica for the tool.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • OBhaveOBhave Join Date: 2003-03-13 Member: 14462Posts: 204Members, Constellation
    edited April 2009
    We should all just chill until there are more posts about the gameplay before having any strong opinions.

    Personally, I'm glad that they're making NS2 more than just a graphics patch... the old NS will always be there for us if we want more of the same.

    AND I'm glad they're toning down the asymmetry in some areas. For example, the asymmetric resource model (single pool vs. individual pools) was bloody impossible to balance. So alien commander = good. Plus it makes the game far more "pubbable", as a single noob alien can't ruin the game by not spending any res. So they're toning down the asymmetry a bit, big deal, I have plenty of faith that they'll retain more than enough to keep things interesting.


    I look forward to clarifications on the following:

    1) What will be the purpose and function of multiple commanders?

    2) Will we still have extra rooms/corridors and vents to keep level design interesting and avoid the CS-style of level design? (I'm 99% certain that the answer to this is yes, but it never hurts to clarify)

    3) Will teching be zero-sum... i.e. will one team's teching ruin the other teams ability to tech?
    (I hope this is not the case, as BattleZone 2 had similar elements and it sort of ruins the multiplayer unless the players agree on special rules which is of course only possible on a LAN)
    Post edited by Unknown User on
    image OBhave
  • PehmoleluPehmolelu Join Date: 2004-05-03 Member: 28424Posts: 103Members, Constellation
    This has just 3 downsides imho:

    There is ALWAYS someone who wants to ruin the game (Or is noob) by going to CC and spamming all res away.

    The other thing is that there will be 1 or 2 hot zones on every map. If team wins that area, their chanse to win is very high, which leads to that every game will be similar. It would be ideal if every map would have areas that are all equally important.

    Also game wouldnt have as fast pace as it has now, since soloing would have a lot less of use, players would now actually move in teams, but the gameplay will probably be alot slower. I really enjoy the fast gameplay of NS1.

    Otherwise, I really like this tech tree etc thing. I love the idea.

    I just hope that NS2 wont have:
    Slow gameplay speed
    Important hotspots whichs leads to other teams victory
    Possibility for players to ruin the game by spamming all the res as marine comm.

    But how...
  • EmanonEmanon Join Date: 2003-05-13 Member: 16254Posts: 692Members, Constellation
    Not sure what my opinion is on this (not that anyone cares)

    but

    It is definitely a feature that can either make or break this game. Take your time implementing this!
  • JonSoloJonSolo Join Date: 2009-04-16 Member: 67203Posts: 3Members
    Personally, I think this is a great idea and I'm surprised more people on the forums aren't behind it. I think this design has worked for games like CoH and DoW personally because it gets the emphasis on the action and getting players out into the field in the early game. Obviously this happens due to resource and tech advancement, but I reckon it will force both sides to be more strategic and protect or target supply chains. Taking it from the only game that I can think of that precedes NS in this hybrid genre, the 1998 remake of Battlezone, it worked extremely well for varying the gameplay and forced the players to be constantly in action.

    I like the visual effects as described as well with lights flickering-- although it may not be immediately obvious which room is under attack, if perhaps it's somewhere down the chain... but the most important part is that it makes sense. As others have mentioned, having sentries or structures with limited battery life or capacitance would make sense, particularly if it was accompanied by the visual and auditory cues you describe. Like, a countdown timer or beeping that lets the players know the sentries are powering down after power has been cut. Perhaps the battery packs could be purchased as individual add-ons to each structure? Further, maybe related to the "alternate power" suggestion, there could be access points that skulks and other small creatures could get at to "gnaw" upon and disrupt power in other ways? If the Commander then purchases "alternate" power, then there could be some interesting visual cues, like cables or tubes appearing from points in the wall.

    I take it that the NS1 idea of being able to seal up rooms or entrances may not appear in this version of NS2? I always felt the idea meshed well with the genre and could have great gameplay potential.
  • NeoSniperNeoSniper Join Date: 2005-06-02 Member: 52976Posts: 423Members
    QUOTE (Bacillus @ Apr 13 2009, 03:58 AM) »
    So, you're saying a 30 min meat grinder on choke points is all positive to the present dynamic skirmishing around the map?


    NS1 is personally the best gaming experience there is to have (Because my favorites genres just happen to be FPS and RTS). I hope nothing I said made it seem like I thought otherwise. However I do think that NS2 can be better and that it can only be better through its differences. This one in particular I feel positive about yet I do have my worries.

    About the "meat grinder"... If its and epic stand-off, then cool. If it a boring stalemate, then boo. I hope the implementation leads to the former.

    To basically all the long "negative" posts in Page 8 (#141-#160 for me). Very well thought out and constructive criticism. Especially about the importance of build able non-res rooms. I not a mapper but it seems true that in NS1 it was quite important and made things interesting for mappers to be able to make "empty rooms" with strategic importance. Adding depth in commanding to be able to recognize this and decide to make a base that protects no res-node but is still important. Maybe some effect like this can happen when Tech-rooms are not JUST at the periphery of the map (or some other mapping variations).

    QUOTE (OBhave @ Apr 16 2009, 06:55 AM) »
    We should all just chill until there are more posts about the gameplay before having any strong opinions.


    This sentence is very in tune with your user name lol. In a good way!

    QUOTE (OBhave @ Apr 16 2009, 06:55 AM) »
    Personally, I'm glad that they're making NS2 more than just a graphics patch... the old NS will always be there for us if we want more of the same.


    QTF

    Also some people mentioned this idea making the game more pubable or pub-friendly. I also think this is true as it can be a good tool for guiding new-players. So I'm for this as it something that can auto organize teams. I hoping something is in the works to address this loss of freedom within the dead zones.

    Supposedly NS2 will be very modable and I think that's what will give the game its lifetime. Which means it's better for all of us if the vanilla is more accessible so that we get as big a player base as we can.
  • KungFuSquirrelKungFuSquirrel Basher of Muttons Join Date: 2002-01-26 Member: 103Posts: 2,175Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor
    There are some very valid concerns here based on the state of the map layout drafts you're seeing (which I'll try to address sometime soon in a blog describing the thought process and workflow), but there's also some knee-jerking without the full picture... this post won't provide that, but will hopefully address a few comments and questions.

    Scale:

    When we say "smaller" it doesn't suddenly mean this map is suddenly two rooms, or the size of dust. Here's a ~1:1 size comparison of the block-in layout you're seeing against Eclipse:

    image

    It's definitely pulled in a bit, but you're mostly seeing a reduction in the pointless corridor winding through the middle of the level. Rooms will be a bit bigger (I suspect the RT rooms will grow a bit before all's said and done), but connections between them will be shorter.

    Size still may vary based on tech point and resource nozzle count, but in general, assume that maps will be on the small side of the ns_ maps, but a good bit larger than the co_ maps.

    Symmetry:

    You can see already that a symmetric base layout doesn't translate to a completely symmetrical CTF level. Many of the base layouts designed so far have symmetrical elements (though not always along an obvious axis) but there are no plans for any real symmetric levels. This level does have some intentional left-right symmetry near the central points, but it should look appropriate in the final version, and won't line up with the "symmetry" of the level, which is along a 45 degree-ish axis through the middle. Another important point of apparent symmetry is elevation, and generally speaking as you move out from marine spawn you'll see similar elevation gradients in NS2 levels that were present in NS1.

    For comparison, Veil started out as a far more symmetrical level than this. You can only really tell in and around Nanogrid, which was a little sloppily done on my part, but the rest of the level evolved out of it pretty well.

    Complexity:

    Keep in mind you're looking at the first greybox blockin of a new level here. These usually aren't released, and for good reason! smile-fix.gif Neither the layout draft or the blockin currently care about anything other than tech point rooms, resource rooms, and primary connections between them. "Primary" connections aren't an official/formal term, but I consider any hallway 192+ wide connecting the critical rooms to be "primary," while any route 128 or narrower or connecting from a route to another route counts as "secondary." A good example of this is in another map we're working on that features a large tram tunnel as a primary connection through chunks of the level, but also contains narrow maintenance corridors branching off that link other areas. Vents also would count as secondary areas. An additional secondary connection is present in the greybox map between the central RT rooms that, while not linking the power grid, links the two side RTs for skulks, lerks, and jetpack marines.

    The primary connections shown will also eventually take on more personality than simple box hallways. Some will stay hallways, but some may become other connections (like the tram tunnel example), open areas overlooking other areas, or add small offshoot rooms. You might even see a sweet space bathroom that also serves as a valuable siege location. As it applies to the power grid, grid areas will link in primary routes, while secondary routes or smaller rooms could exist outside the grid or inherit the grid state of the nearest major room/primary route. My current assumption is secondary routes and any of their offshoots will remain within the grid, but vents will stay off-grid unless they specifically cross into a room or between two points in the same grid area (and even then, the grid won't change any lighting or states within the vent).

    There will always be a direct visual connection from one area to the next. In general we're leaning toward direct physical connections but a case as suggested by Downforce is an option, and another couple layout drafts include a "shortcut" route where there is a direct connection from Marine Spawn to a central tech point, but it starts blocked by a door that can only be opened from the far side. This could also be triggered back shut by aliens to shut down marine reinforcements to that room or others in the level. You will not see rooms that randomly require another room on the far side of the map in any official map.

    Stix brought up a concern that a route like one seen in Nancy would lose its purpose. Here's an (admittedly sloppy) example of how the power grid might cover the surrounding areas:

    image

    This is of course a little messy since the level was never designed for it, but if part of a level doesn't explicitly fall inside a power grid room, it doesn't mean it will become useless or be cut. Other cases compared to NS levels might actually warrant adding an additional RT or tech point (NS would technically have 4, remember).

    This is also a good transition to another point of layout "complexity." A route like the one from MS to Mother Interface will not be present in any map shipping with NS2 - because, frankly, it's awful. The connection itself does serve a valuable purpose, but the path is a convoluted mess of inconsistent buttons and doors - sometimes the button is a button, sometimes the same one is a decoration, sometimes a the door requires a button, sometimes it opens when used, and sometimes it does nothing - and ends with a sloppy elevation change (maybe for VIS reasons, but still messy) that at first glance from the other direction completely hides that it's an exit. That may be "complex" but at the expense of the person playing the level.

    Crispy specifically pointed out the one connection I'm least happy with in the entire level, and similar issues plague the lower central RT as well. I'd expect to see a slight bit more branching there from the nearby tech point to help alleviate that congestion. And, of course, adding those proper secondary connections to the level will also be very important. The big focus right now is simply implementing the first pass of the grid system, which is almost done, and getting some of our other base layouts up and running. From there we'll be fleshing these simple greybox layouts into more game-ready layouts.


    Anyway, that almost turned into a blog entry by itself, but I'll have more details on how we developed what you're seeing, and probably a bunch of borrowed examples from this post, put together soon. Hope that helps at least clarify some of what you're seeing, and hopefully provides at least some comfort.
  • CanadianWolverineCanadianWolverine Join Date: 2003-02-07 Member: 13249Posts: 1,010Members
    edited April 2009
    Great post KungFuSquirrel. smile-fix.gif

    I had a few ideas for some of the concerns:

    Flashing Lights When Attacked
    - Instead of flashing lights per se, perhaps a color change in the lights? Or instead of a strobe like flash, use oscillating levels of light that seem to pulse. Use of lights could also act as a visual indicator to give a player directions to the area of conflict or the line & arrow Way Point path along the surface of the floor with a color indicating that the area is under attack. Hopefully that would meet the goals of informing and atmosphere without giving any players a strobe headache from the slide show affect of flicking the lights on and off.

    More Commanders Means Fewer Grunts In The Action
    - What if you had a Weld Bot out in the field for every butt in the Chair? Sure, it would still mean less fire power (maybe?), but it could provide a slight benefit, depending of course on the capability of the Weld Bot. Allowing a Commander to use his Weld Bot to repair and do the door thing? Would that also provide more visceral action for a Commander? Please consider it.

    Edit: Oh, wait if you also tied the Mobile Siege Cannon to butts in Chairs as well? Might help with not having to develop as much AI behavior for your "bots", you know, other than path finding after a Commander gives it directions which I am assuming would be point and click, though you could have a Commander use WASD/Arrow Keys to move it... Hmm...

    Well, hope my brain storming helps some.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • locallyunscenelocallyunscene Feeder of Trolls Join Date: 2002-12-25 Member: 11528Posts: 4,021Members, Constellation
    edited April 2009
    QUOTE
    Scale:
    When we say "smaller" it doesn't suddenly mean this map is suddenly two rooms, or the size of dust. Here's a ~1:1 size comparison of the block-in layout you're seeing against Eclipse:

    That's actually much smaller than I excepted. I mean the first tech point travel time is roughly half that of the first rt's currently. I like that each team has a "natural" tech point even if I think it is a little close personally. It seems like getting to tech lvl 2 will be almost trivial for both teams, assuming equal skill. Third tier will be significantly easier than it is currently for kharaa, but a little harder for marines in terms of map control.

    On that topic, will there be tech levels beyond 3 for each side? It would make sense to me in a "swing of power" way. I'd say the steamroll effect is desirable past a certain point to end the game quickly which something that many complain NS is currently lacking. Mid to late game battles that cause a swing of 3-3 to 4-2 should be huge IMO.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
    QUOTE (Flayra @ Mar 28 2007, 09:21 PM) »
    It's not an easy balance to achieve, but we do want to make a game that will be both the best competitive game since Starcraft and also one that many people can enjoy casually without being in a clan or an experienced or knowledgeable NS player. That's the goal at least!


    - NS in game name - tilde - My Steam Id Page - .
  • niaccurshiniaccurshi Join Date: 2002-12-30 Member: 11629Posts: 1,075Members, Constellation
    Well it's clear that most of us look forward to understanding more about where it's going, I also don't necessarily know what is wrong with intense long games of an hour or so, people quite happily put down 2 hours for one run through Left For dead, for example.
    Known on Servers worldwide as "pygmy.shrew"
  • BacillusBacillus Join Date: 2006-11-02 Member: 58241Posts: 2,700Members
    QUOTE (locallyunscene @ Apr 16 2009, 05:01 PM) »
    It seems like getting to tech lvl 2 will be almost trivial for both teams, assuming equal skill. Third tier will be significantly easier than it is currently for kharaa, but a little harder for marines in terms of map control.

    Most likely the res cost is much more crucial than the location at that point. Location on the other hand means that the team not investing in tech might be able to push deep into enemy side and destroy the tech advantage buildings before the oppositing team gains too much advantage from it. That's how it would play out in most RTSes at least.

    Great post by KFS, it allowed me to understand the concept of NS2 maps a lot better.
  • locallyunscenelocallyunscene Feeder of Trolls Join Date: 2002-12-25 Member: 11528Posts: 4,021Members, Constellation
    QUOTE (Bacillus @ Apr 16 2009, 01:43 PM) »
    Most likely the res cost is much more crucial than the location at that point. Location on the other hand means that the team not investing in tech might be able to push deep into enemy side and destroy the tech advantage buildings before the oppositing team gains too much advantage from it. That's how it would play out in most RTSes at least.

    Great post by KFS, it allowed me to understand the concept of NS2 maps a lot better.

    Indeed, it is an interesting shift from NS1, which is why I mentioned it.
    QUOTE (Flayra @ Mar 28 2007, 09:21 PM) »
    It's not an easy balance to achieve, but we do want to make a game that will be both the best competitive game since Starcraft and also one that many people can enjoy casually without being in a clan or an experienced or knowledgeable NS player. That's the goal at least!


    - NS in game name - tilde - My Steam Id Page - .
  • SupernornSupernorn Best. Picture. Ever. Made. Ever. Join Date: 2002-11-07 Member: 7608Posts: 4,412Members, Constellation
    edited April 2009
    Eh. Sounds good to me. I'm down with the new gameplay ideas as long as you bring back the 1.0 era lighting to your maps. NS isn't about brightly lit corridors damnit.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • NicksaerianNicksaerian Join Date: 2008-10-15 Member: 65207Posts: 75Members, Constellation
    If this has been discussed, please excuse the redundancy.

    Instead of having multiple commanders there could be a command hierarchy structure. There have been many comments on how having multiple commanders would give opportunity to massive griefing possibilities. There would be one commander, who retains absolute control over what goes on, but there could be sub-commanders (I'm not sure what the preferred military terms would be, lieutenants?) who would serve as support to the commander in micro-managing. What control these sub-commanders have is up for debate because I'm not sure what their role could be in the context of the game. The point is, such a hierarchical structure would alleviate the griefing component while keeping the concept for multiple commanders intact.
    Sig images must be no more than 400 pixels wide x 75 pixels high, and they must also be no more than 22KB in size. - KungFuDiscoMonkey
  • spellman23spellman23 NS1 Theorycraft Expert Join Date: 2007-05-17 Member: 60920Posts: 3,365Members
    kungFu, you are awesome.

    Thanks for clarifying all that. As a pseudo-mapper (i.e. I stink at it still) that was really helpful to kind of understand the methodology that the dev team is using to apply this concept into real maps. From the looks of things I believe you're heading in a good direction.
    helping bring perspective and learning since the olde days

    QUOTE
    <jenny> What's the plural of 'Onos'?
    <Mexican> For a while, I thought it was 'Oh ######'!


    Vote on your Ideas/Suggestions!
    http://www.unknownworlds.com/forums/index....howtopic=125347
  • aeroripperaeroripper Join Date: 2005-02-25 Member: 42471Posts: 1,992NS1 Playtester, Forum Moderators, Constellation mod
    edited April 2009
    QUOTE
    Flashing Lights When Attacked
    - Instead of flashing lights per se, perhaps a color change in the lights? Or instead of a strobe like flash, use oscillating levels of light that seem to pulse. Use of lights could also act as a visual indicator to give a player directions to the area of conflict or the line & arrow Way Point path along the surface of the floor with a color indicating that the area is under attack. Hopefully that would meet the goals of informing and atmosphere without giving any players a strobe headache from the slide show affect of flicking the lights on and off.


    The flashing lights should vary in their flashing depending on how close the RT is to going down. The first stage would look like your lights do when somebody starts the vacumm and the lights flicker and dim a bit:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ws2BWszl7iQ

    The second stage should have some start going black and the others under strain:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oe9-iBKHbk0...feature=related
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8G-SyfyznjY...feature=related

    The final stage (nearing RT destruction) should have red emergency lighting come up and most lights out or flashing wildly. Once destroyed the room only has red emergency lighting. Perfect entrance for the D.I. to come rolling in...:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvNhEeU1jCA...feature=related
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • FrostFire626FrostFire626 Join Date: 2007-12-18 Member: 63207Posts: 47Members
    QUOTE (Nicksaerian @ Apr 16 2009, 12:52 PM) »
    Instead of having multiple commanders there could be a command hierarchy structure. There have been many comments on how having multiple commanders would give opportunity to massive griefing possibilities. There would be one commander, who retains absolute control over what goes on, but there could be sub-commanders (I'm not sure what the preferred military terms would be, lieutenants?) who would serve as support to the commander in micro-managing.


    I'm still a hardcore advocate of the 1-commander solution. Call me elitist, but good commanders never needed much help micromanaging (aside from monitoring fast minimap events). I'm extremely worried that my beloved Commander feature is being watered down to please the masses.

    I believe that there are alternative (preferable) methods of streamlining a commanders responsibilities. These include things like:

    1) have much more obvious minimap alarms/alerts
    2) the ability for marines to carry one heal over time medpack (only while not under attack, WoW style)
    3) allow marines to heal each other with their medpack
    4) make it possible to queue tech upgrades, where the Comm will be prompted to approve the next tech upon completion

    Again, an (understandable) absence of details continues to feed my paranoia. I just hope that the multiple commander concept isn't written in stone yet.

    QUOTE (JonSolo @ Apr 16 2009, 06:37 AM) »
    the 1998 remake of Battlezone.

    P.S. I LOVED Battlezone! The game was an order of magnitude better than recent hits (L4D -_- zzzz).


  • MasterPTGMasterPTG Join Date: 2006-11-30 Member: 58780Posts: 283Members
    KFS:
    What you describe is basically a narrowing and simplification of the map (at least, for this specific example).

    Will there be different sized maps for differing numbers of players? Or are we to expect a max of two 'fronts' for official maps?

    For example, ns_metal can easily have 3-4 fronts. Marines could have PG's in two hives, no control over the center of the map, yet still be trying to push from one hive to the center hive, while still having aliens rush the base/other hives. This dynamic seems to be almost 'lost' with the new streamlined maps.

    Also, if the rooms are going to grow, won't that inherently favor the marines (open spaces = marine domination, winding twisty corners = alien domination/advantage). Besides the reasons for blocking LoS stuff for mapping, it had the side benefit of providing higher lifeforms cover to hit-and-run. If you make the rooms larger with just simple L-turns, wouldn't that heavily favor marines?
  • LaggasaurusLaggasaurus Join Date: 2003-11-13 Member: 22773Posts: 226Members, NS1 Playtester
    edited April 2009
    Well after an exhausting read and dying a little inside, i've come round to the idea 'slightly'. I'm gonna start with referencing to KFDM's post since it was the last thing I bothered to read (sorry if I didn't recognise your name I skipped), you realise eclipse is the smallest map in NS and consequently marines have a very hard problem maintaining nodes against a fundamentally fast paced team, and yet your considering making the maps smaller and making it easier for aliens to cut off the marines supply of resources, it doesn't take too much analysing to see where thats gonna end up (read tjosan's comment about marine turtling). Secondly I can absolutely no logic in this comment 'Rooms will be a bit bigger (I suspect the RT rooms will grow a bit before all's said and done)' in a game thats ranged vs melee, this just conjures up images of the atrocties that are siege maps.

    QUOTE
    generally speaking as you move out from marine spawn you'll see similar elevation gradients in NS2 levels that were present in NS1.

    For the love of god don't use lifts or elevators, or if you do fix the plethera of bugs and abuses associated with them first. Also:
    QUOTE
    'large tram tunnel as a primary connection'

    Did someone say MMMMMMMMMMMMM BAST...

    I'm also a little curious, by:
    QUOTE
    And, of course, adding those proper secondary connections to the level will also be very important.

    do you mean there not in the map yet so that picture is minus secondary corridors? Because as it stands you may as well name the map ns_keyhole, yeh you know what I'm talking about tounge.gif .


    Secondly, i'm not sure why you're forcing the marines to stick in packs as they pressure whilst at the same time making it easier to cripple and flank them. I have the horrible feeling this will ruin the fast paced nature of the game, (large maps = fast expansion, and for those sitting thinking 'fast paced? wtf is he talking about' go find a 3.2 competitive HLTV demo and hold down +showmap, although saying that make sure its not veil with flatline involved as they just loved turtling the hell out of power and nano the clinical b*st*rds). I get the feeling i'm slightly reiterating sherpa's point here but how are marines meant to push if they can lose everything if they don't turtle on choke points, without the game basically being TF2 in space?


    Issue numero tres, am i jumping to conclusions in assuming that with the addition of an alien commander the gorge is now nothing more than a fat mobile med pack biggrin-fix.gif? Since i'd always assumed they were the alien commanders just without the domineering title and the need to scream into your mic and SPAM CAPS to get your point across.


    This may just be a harsh reaction to realising NS2 isn't going to be the game I hoped it'd be or maybe i'm just jumping to conclusions, but with every 'official' reply I read it felt like NS2 was losing the uniqueness that drew me to NS in the first place (and yes I do realise that NS1 was pretty much AvP and starcraft slapped together in one big happy fun mod, but still :/). I guess i always knew this was gonna happen, e.g. the removal of bhopping was a fairly big hint that they were moving away from the sharp skill curve based elements (just to double check I have read this somewhere right? not just imagining this?) which for me made the competitive side of things fun. And just out of curiosity have the devs actually considered things on a 6v6, competant players scale? Because I know there are a lot of us looking forward to one thing - competitive NS2 biggrin-fix.gif !

    Hmm feel like i'm rambling slightly as its getting late and I can't really think coherently or remember half the things I was gonna write about, oh well i'm sure i'll remember tomorrow.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
    [EUPT] lagga

    'Death gives no reason, So why should I, Death has no season, So I know i'll never die.' - Just Like Anything

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  • juicejuice Join Date: 2003-01-28 Member: 12886Posts: 1,044Members, Constellation
    On the criticisms: IIRC, whenever NS1 new versions didn't turn out fun, the team scrapped them and changed the game until it was fun.

    I'm not worried about how things will turn out. If it ends up being a slow, frustrating, or generic game, they'll just scrap the thing and change the gameplay, which will be infinitely easier and fast now with their own engine and tools.

    So when I hear an idea, I imagine it with the best possible implementation, because that's the only way they'll let it be.
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