Poll

What's most important to you?

Promoting Hacking to a full resource
41 (15.3%)
Revising Champions
33 (12.3%)
Revising the Beachheads AI Plot
3 (1.1%)
Reworking Armor
19 (7.1%)
Diversifying Fallen Spire events
21 (7.8%)
Revising the Astro Trains plot (again)
4 (1.5%)
Improving Hybrids
18 (6.7%)
Improving Spirecraft
10 (3.7%)
Downscaling health/attack/armor/etc stats
19 (7.1%)
Reworking relationship between superweapons and non-superweapons
20 (7.5%)
New Sentinel types
4 (1.5%)
In-game IRC client
15 (5.6%)
Revising the Hunter plot
3 (1.1%)
Balancing energy, especially early game vs late game dynamics
6 (2.2%)
Tweaking balance of player economy, especially harvester vs econ station upgrades, and early game vs late game income levels
9 (3.4%)
UI improvements to make it more "accessible" to new players
12 (4.5%)
Turret cap rework
18 (6.7%)
Defender mode rework
4 (1.5%)
Improve consistency of balance across different Unit Cap Scale and Combat Style settings.
9 (3.4%)
None of these should happen!
0 (0%)

Total Members Voted: 71

Voting closed: June 29, 2013, 08:32:07 AM

Author Topic: Poll: Big Items For 8.0  (Read 5865 times)

Offline keith.lamothe

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Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« on: June 26, 2013, 08:32:07 AM »
Nominations from here.

So the next expansion and 8.0 are planned to be released in October.  That gives some time for trying out some new stuff to improve the game, but it is a pretty finite window.  This poll's purpose is to help set priorities for how some/most of that time will be spent (I have some stuff I'll be fiddling with either way, probably including some of the below in some form, but anyhow).

Not all of the below will take the same amount of time or whatever, but I'm more interested in what's most important to people rather than getting into cost/benefit analysis at this stage, etc.  More analysis and discussion of exactly how to address the winners is likely to follow.  Accordingly, I don't know how many "winners" there will be as it kind of depends on how much time I wind up having and how much the top items wind up taking.

Note: the order of work may vary if something works better being done first and/or needs more testing/iteration time (like the stats downscaling thing).

The list from the nominations thread, by way of adding some explanation to the poll options:

1) Promoting Hacking to a full resource
- the idea being to replace crystal, and just combining m+c as they're functionally interchangeable except for the 1.5 conversion ratio
- this is the main thread where we discussed this: http://www.arcengames.com/forums/index.php/topic,12812.msg141921.html#msg141921

2) Revising Champions
- whether it's new scenarios, new direct-use-abilities, changing how unlocks are done, etc

3) Revising the Beachheads AI Plot
- adding less death-on-wheels manifestations so they can be used to make chokepointing harder without hard-countering them, then making it scalar

4) Reworking Armor
- first we'd need to find a solution that people actually like.  Some are ok with just removing it, some are ok with making it a simple %-based rule, but others really want to retain the current level of complexity in terms of having more impact on high-rof attackers, etc.
- Frankly at this point I've just been quietly removing armor and armor piercing from most units that I rebalance unless it seems to make good thematic sense that they be there, and not putting armor or armor piercing on most new units (unless, again, it really makes sense).  Keeping this up for a while will probably largely resolve the issues people have with armor as there will be a much smaller list of ships with either characteristic.

5) Diversifying Fallen Spire events
- So instead of every shard recovery being a survey-ship-then-escort-home, having a random roll between that, and another mode where the shard is stationary and just needs to be defended for X minutes, and another where the shard is in a hostile ship that you have to blow up to get the shard (which probably just warps to your subspace receiver at that point to save further trouble), and whatever else we come up with

6) Revising the Astro Trains plot (again)
- basically now it's at least interesting, compared to its previous incarnation, but it's hard.  If we can work out something better for these I'm happy to work on it if it's really a priority for people.

7) Improving Hybrids
- implementing hybrids recolonizing neutral planets (presumably in a way that does not cost AIP to retake), restoring their ability to build defenses (presumably with some kind of per-planet cap to avoid them stacking like 50 FF-IIIs on a single ARS command station, etc), restoring their ability to build more hybrid facilities (again with some kind of restraining mechanism so it doesn't get out of control), and whatever else we can cook up that's feasible.

8 ) Improving Spirecraft
- These work pretty well right now, honestly, as many AARs and such attest, but there's definitely room for improvement.

9) Downscaling health/attack/armor/etc stats
- Basically just dividing all those numbers by 10 or 100 or whatever; there are some units that will need special attention due to having values low enough that the round-off would be significant.  Just doing this in itself isn't terribly complex, but it's a lot of work so I'm not really going

10) Reworking relationship between superweapons and non-superweapons
- This would basically go along with #9 (the downscaling of stats), and the idea would be to not downscale the superweapons as far as the other ships, so that there's more distinction between, say, a MkV Zenith Starship and an Armored Golem.
- I think there's still some dissent on this, so we'd need to sort out exactly what it is that people want here first.

11) New Sentinel types
- as per this post from Hearteater.

12) In-game IRC client
- I've done tests where I can successfully get the game to send and receive lines to the normal AIW IRC channel (though we wouldn't want to use exactly the same channel, probably, but the folks running the server are ok with us using the service for this purpose), but there's a lot of work involved in getting the interface even semi-reasonable.  Not sure if it can be done without writing our own textbox, actually, to get away from the bugs in Unity's, which is a lot of work.

13) Revising the Hunter plot
- I'm basically planning on doing this anyway since it's so recent, but including here for completeness.

14) Balancing energy, especially early game vs late game dynamics

15) Tweaking balance of player economy, especially harvester vs econ station upgrades, and early game vs late game income levels

16) UI improvements to make it more "accessible" to new players

17) Turret cap rework
- Basically to make distributed defense more feasible without significantly buffing or nerfing chokepoints.
- basically something like http://www.arcengames.com/mantisbt/view.php?id=11815 , but probably with a mutual on-the-same-planet exlcusivity between core turrets and the structures that provide more local turret cap for normal turrets

18) Defender mode rework
- it's never really worked right, and no one seems to care, because they hardly ever play it :)

19) Improve consistency of balance across different Unit Cap Scale and Combat Style settings.


Anyway, I'm setting this to run for 72 hours, with 4 votes per user (more votes would probably unfocus the results).

Thanks for the feedback :)
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Offline Tridus

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2013, 08:41:28 AM »
Only four options? That's tough!

On the IRC option - if that doesn't get done, the Trillian chat overlay works in AI War (at least it does when the Steam overlay is working, which is when you don't launch through the patcher) and it already supports IRC. It's not as ideal as an IRC client in game, but could be a workaround for people if that option doesn't make the cut.

Offline The Hunter

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2013, 08:56:34 AM »
Champions: Definitely, i would like more nebulas/missions, maybe more modules even, so far they are pretty similar every time, unlike the rest of the game. :)
Fallen spire events: Same reason as champions, more variation is always good with heavily generated game like AI War. ;)
Improving Spirecraft: Especially Ion Blaster which so far seems to be not really useful, considering that even ion cannons are only useful situationally, having ion cannon with nerfed range like that is pretty much eh.
New Sentinel types: Those are some awesome ideas here.

If there was fifth option, hacking, sounds pretty fun.

Offline Aklyon

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2013, 09:52:10 AM »
Hacking: It sounds awesome as an idea, and I'm not particularly interested in keeping m+c separate at this point
Champions: being able to give even a bit of a nudge in the right direction to the module unlocks could make things much more interesting. Perhaps similar to ARS hack selection being individual in MP?
FS events: More variety could be nice indeed.
Improve Consistency: A good thing.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2013, 10:54:49 AM by Aklyon »
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Offline Zeyi

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2013, 10:25:40 AM »
I was really hoping for the hacking changes this last expansion so can i just vote for that 4 times? :D

Also I think Champions should be a priority as, as it stands now it feels like an entire expansion's main purpose is going completely unused by most of the core players.


« Last Edit: June 26, 2013, 10:28:48 AM by Zeyi »

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2013, 10:26:56 AM »
Also I think Champions should be a priority as, as it stands now it feels like an entire expansion's main purpose is going completely unused by most of the core players.
I don't see evidence that it's most of the core players not playing with them at all, but I agree that there's more dissatisfaction about that particular expansion's "anchor" than about any other expansion that I'm aware of.
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Offline Zeyi

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2013, 10:36:26 AM »
Also I think Champions should be a priority as, as it stands now it feels like an entire expansion's main purpose is going completely unused by most of the core players.
I don't see evidence that it's most of the core players not playing with them at all, but I agree that there's more dissatisfaction about that particular expansion's "anchor" than about any other expansion that I'm aware of.

Could well be, I think I'm so unused to seeing any negativity on these forums that my perception is being skewed :)

Also, I admittedly have a lot of distaste for MOBAs so that particular expansion is indeed my least favourite, and after a single play through I've not used it myself due to the heavy micro, so its quite possible it's just not for me which is fine. However if a less micro heavy champion were to show it's head I'd be eager to give it another go. (I just have  no suggestions as to how to do this, or even whether its a good idea as I know it kind of contradicts the point of them)
« Last Edit: June 26, 2013, 10:37:58 AM by Zeyi »

Offline Histidine

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2013, 10:42:31 AM »
Huh, I'm mildly surprised nobody voted for the economy revision at all.
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Offline relmz32

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2013, 10:46:51 AM »
Only four options? That's tough!

On the IRC option - if that doesn't get done, the Trillian chat overlay works in AI War (at least it does when the Steam overlay is working, which is when you don't launch through the patcher) and it already supports IRC. It's not as ideal as an IRC client in game, but could be a workaround for people if that option doesn't make the cut.

Whoa, i didn't know this, that is pretty helpful, thanks!

As for my votes, I voted for hacking as a resource because it sounds awesome, The Armor rework, UI improvements, and the stat downscale.
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Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2013, 10:47:48 AM »
Could well be, I think I'm so unused to seeing any negativity on these forums that my perception is being skewed :)
It sometimes has that effect for me too; there's a few dynamics here where we generally keep little complaints, or complaints we think are very localized to our own personality, to ourselves.  But if someone breaches the subject a ton of me-too can turn into a flood.  Which can be a little unsettling to the developer (I still laugh when I think about how that particular flood happened like 8 or 9 months after the feature's introduction, shortly before the release of an expansion that had nothing to do with it) but it's workable as long as people are reasonably patient.  Which generally we are.

Quote
Also, I admittedly have a lot of distaste for MOBAs so that particular expansion is indeed my least favourite, and after a single play through I've not used it myself due to the heavy micro, so its quite possible it's just not for me which is fine. However if a less micro heavy champion were to show it's head I'd be eager to give it another go. (I just have  no suggestions as to how to do this, or even whether its a good idea as I know it kind of contradicts the point of them)
It may be a not-for-you thing, sure.  But if we can find a way to expand the target audience without messing up too much stuff I'm all for that too.
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Offline Tridus

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2013, 10:48:51 AM »
Huh, I'm mildly surprised nobody voted for the economy revision at all.

With only four votes and a lot of interesting things on the list, some stuff is going to have a hard time. Beachheads are probably in the same boat.

Offline Aklyon

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2013, 10:52:45 AM »
I know beachheads are probably important in someway, but I've never used them and theres only 4 votes available, so, yeah.
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Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2013, 10:54:06 AM »
I know beachheads are probably important in someway, but I've never used them and theres only 4 votes available, so, yeah.
Yea, that's going to be true of a lot of popular (or semi-popular, in that case) requests: nice, but not big priorities.  That's part of what I'm trying to discover here.
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Offline TechSY730

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2013, 10:58:45 AM »
I voted for all the major balance implication stuff
So, I went for stat "deflation", superweapon balance (hopefully in the form of not "deflating" them as much as everything else), armor, and energy. It was tricky to choose between energy and resource balance, but I went for energy, as I feel that the current energy values are in a slightly less "refined" place than the resource ones are.


I may shift one of my votes from superweapon to the resource balance though...

Offline orzelek

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Re: Poll: Big Items For 8.0
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2013, 01:12:40 PM »
Thats really many options and not so many votes. Hard to choose.. could use at least 2 more votes :D
Poor turret caps...