Macro-manage Late game large scale

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zolobolo
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby zolobolo » Sat Jul 29, 2017 2:45 am

Arioch wrote:If the enemy is not putting enough pressure on you so that you can build enough ships to break the game, then the victory conditions should probably be kicking in.

Rights, and since this scenario should be a rare one it can be attended for like this. Should be not necessay to limit the overall game mechanics due to this

wminsing
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby wminsing » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:38 pm

I was thinking less about game-engine breakage then I was about encouraging players to do something else then build the biggest doomstack possible with the resources they have available. Right now there's not a ton of reasons to not just go and try to achieve maximum concentration of force until the enemy fleet is ground down to nothing. And this isn't a problem per-se (several real-world military situations resembled this), but it does mean that for evenly-matched empires the entire war (and game) might hinge on one battle and every thing else is mop-up, and in uneven wars it is usually better for the weaker side to not fight battles at all but instead pursue some sort of indirect strategy. At least that has been my play experience. Considering how the battle engine is the focus of the game that seems like something that could be improved.

-Will

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Captainspire
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby Captainspire » Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:20 am

Image
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This is On a large map. to which I have only opened up half of it so far. I have a fleet of about 50 ships and these two races have these many ships. If ever these fleets would meet, Im sure something catastrophic is going to happen. I haven't even found those races living on the other half of the map! I've stayed alive by being very diplomatic with these two races and even allying with one of them, otherwise they would have wiped me out a while ago.

zolobolo
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby zolobolo » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:43 am

Captainspire wrote: I've stayed alive by being very diplomatic with these two races and even allying with one of them, otherwise they would have wiped me out a while ago.


You have nerves of steel good sir. What is it? turn 500?

Sometimes I play on large and with 170 stars but even on hard difficulty the AI wouldn't last as far as I can tell (and if I wouldn't declare war on them all the time). They tend to wipe out each other till around turn 300 so that only 1 or two major ones remain (which are almost always Yoral and Imperial)

So how did they get super-dred? I have never seen them producing one of those not to mentioned the disco-ball :) Furthest I have seen them go even on the 170 star maps was battleships.

orvarth
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby orvarth » Tue Aug 01, 2017 12:21 pm

hi ,

i enjoy the game for almost 100h on gog (thanks for that) , about late game fleet size i think prod/ore maintenance could be a solution :

prod and ore maintenance with "exponential" cost for larger hulls .

gold maintenance only for mercenaries .

wminsing
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby wminsing » Tue Aug 01, 2017 1:14 pm

If ever these fleets would meet, Im sure something catastrophic is going to happen.


Jesus. I have never see the AI get their crud together like that. Incredible.

-Will

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Captainspire
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby Captainspire » Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:14 pm

orvarth wrote:hi ,

i enjoy the game for almost 100h on gog (thanks for that) , about late game fleet size i think prod/ore maintenance could be a solution :
prod and ore maintenance with "exponential" cost for larger hulls .
gold maintenance only for mercenaries .


The vast distances I set in the galaxy, (sparse) made it very possible for races to develop and some impossible to reach or extend out from unless you have some of the best engines and distances. If its 1601 Im thinking we start at what 1200? So 401 turns.

They did increase the points needed to research technologies, but that didnt seem to matter when you can boat planets as research centers. The AI seems to make so many smaller ships just due to lack of minerals. otherwise I'm sure Id face a screen full of doomstars.

I'm miffed they lowered the damage of rail guns, but in this situation, first strikes make a difference in combat.

I wish there was a tech limiter, preventing some technologies from even being invented or discovered.

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faijeya
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby faijeya » Fri Aug 04, 2017 10:49 pm

There is a very simple yet hard answer for large scale fleets.
Make the small and cheap ships obsolete.

A bit like as with real life fighter planes progression, the better they get, the less you can afford to build.
What if every next ship hull had roughly twice as cost as a previous type, but could beat three or four of them?

Cost is easy, but what about an actual fight?
Ok, let's imagine destroyers/light cruisers can't fit anything better than a nuclear reactor, heavy cruisers are limited by fusion and battleships by antimatter.
Some cheese builds are out, such as torpedo destroyers with shields, but not all.
Ok, let's postulate (or set via power draw) that T1 ships can carry only usual lasers and mass drivers, T2 do have access to advanced turbolasers and ion cannons, T3... you got the idea.
Gunships and torpedo destroyers stay as glass cannons, of course, though you can invest into neutronium armor for them if you want.

Much easier said than done, as it requires some calculations and, possibly ships internals tweaks, but it's a solution for hordes of gunships with primary artillery and force fields.
Also, AOE weaponry that was stated about a year ago as a reason for the sparse initial ships position may shine in these conditions.

Now, there's still no need to field a proper battle group with lesser ships.
Each ship in each battle would be treated essentially as a ship of the line (regardless if she's capable of it) and to tingle these realistic senses (mostly taken from WW2 films) you'll need to set the clock about forty years later.
But that's even harder.

Wyvern
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby Wyvern » Fri Aug 04, 2017 11:03 pm

Personally not a fan of the 'small ships go obsolete' theory. On the other hand, the only other notion I've been able to come up with for how to manage large-scale combats is... not a good fit for Stars in Shadow. Even something basic like a fleet size limit (perhaps justified as 'drive interference') still forces small ships into obsolescence, eventually.

(If you're curious, that other notion I had - the one that doesn't force small ships to go obsolete entirely - is to run with something like MOO2's ship leaders - except with more of them, and ships that don't have a leader fight under AI control. You'd want to tune it so that, early game, you could just put a named captain on every warship, but by late game you'd need to only put them on the important ships and leave your swarms of lighter vessels running under AI control. Getting that to play right would probably be a pain, though, and, as mentioned, I don't think it's a good fit for SiS.)

zolobolo
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby zolobolo » Sat Aug 05, 2017 1:43 am

Wyvern wrote:Personally not a fan of the 'small ships go obsolete' theory

How abouth putting ships under AI control withouth the need for leaders or any similar restraint?

This wouldd obviously be a flexible solution for fleets of any sizes, does not require additional art assets (exept for a text in the ship command list) and would probably not need AI changes as the same AI would be given to these ships.

What it would additionally need though is an indication in the battlemap if a ship is undder Auto control (a green icon of sorts hovering over the ship maybe).

The only reason I can think of developers not prefering this concept would be that it lets you autoplay the game. This has been discussed before and since this is a critical element of the gameplay I am more or less sure that it goes for it like noewhere else. So back it is to constraining this "feeature" to leaders and such which is not effective though and the idea may go out of the window...

Personally I wouldn't mind autocontrol but due to the above quite unprobable :)

Still think this is a nietche issue: If the player can stand to be so diplomatic to not initiate a war for 100s of turns, and then gets int oa bug fleet battle, I am sure they are already starving from some action and manual control will not be a big issue, especially since there are nnot going to be many such occasions once the stockpiled ships are depleted. The game simply must not crash under these curcumstances which should not be the case in a large-enough map) considering these are not 3d models

zolobolo
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby zolobolo » Sat Aug 05, 2017 1:55 am

faijeya wrote:There is a very simple yet hard answer for large scale fleets.
Make the small and cheap ships obsolete.

Yes this approach has been taken by many and newer title try to get away from their heratage as it ends up producing the highest avaialble hull tier with the most modern weapon which is arguably the only logical thing to do. This issue I have seen with GC2-GC3 and it pretty much ruins fleet composition concepts.

Yes, all these games are based on WW2 tactics but in real-life combat units do not go extinct due to tech advance (it is even mostly the other way around)

A modern destroyer could wipe the floor with all the battleships of WW2 and probably take on the carriers as well when already on it, nor did single troopers in the army get obsolete because bigger and better artillery and tanks are avaialable. What changes when you are up against a foe with simialr tech, is the roles of different classes: can play around with these if one try to take reality into account (going from ship of the line to escort and from there to patrol boat function for example)

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faijeya
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby faijeya » Sat Aug 05, 2017 7:57 am

Wyvern wrote:Personally not a fan of the 'small ships go obsolete' theory.

Me neither.
However, it's the only one I can think of that has potential to work without redesigning the whole game around it.

zolobolo wrote:How abouth putting ships under AI control withouth the need for leaders or any similar restraint?

It can be approximated by moving only ships that are interesting to you and pressing autocombat for the turn.
Not that good in my opinion.

zolobolo wrote:Still think this is a nietche issue: If the player can stand to be so diplomatic to not initiate a war for 100s of turns, and then gets int oa bug fleet battle, I am sure they are already starving from some action and manual control will not be a big issue, especially since there are nnot going to be many such occasions once the stockpiled ships are depleted.

It's not a niche issue.
The first common case is when you contact a civilization in late game, it decides it needs your planets and sends its blob to you.
The second common case is when you've won that first decisive battle against a large enemy, but mopping up and countering moderate threats requires more and more ships which snowball into a large and disparate fleet at the end of the war.

zolobolo wrote:Yes, all these games are based on WW2 tactics

Nope. It's a very simplified take on early 20th century and partly WW1 naval tactics.

zolobolo wrote:but in real-life combat units do not go extinct due to tech advance (it is even mostly the other way around)

Yes, they do.
Battleships, zeppelins, tank destroyers, cavalry, torpedo boats...

zolobolo wrote:A modern destroyer could wipe the floor with all the battleships of WW2 and probably take on the carriers as well when already on it

Killing a battleship is plausible, winning against a carrier - not so much.
Carrier has much better effective range, modern AA systems are ill-suited to target planes with piston engines, a modern destroyer doesn't have any armor to talk about.

zolobolo wrote:nor did single troopers in the army get obsolete because bigger and better artillery and tanks are avaialable.

We'll always need men to kill and die, whether in infantry or mechanized infantry.
However, units with large-caliber, large-range rifles indeed became obsolete.

zolobolo wrote:What changes when you are up against a foe with simialr tech, is the roles of different classes: can play around with these if one try to take reality into account (going from ship of the line to escort and from there to patrol boat function for example)

Reality is not fun.
The game as it is does not need drastic paradigm shifts as they happened in reality.
Breech-loading guns, all-or-nothing armoring, all-big-guns, torpedoes, torpedo boats, torpedo rams, torpedo boat destroyers, subs, recon planes, Washington conference, the advent of a torpedo plane, the ascencion of the carrier, jets, nukes, anti-ship missiles, swarming cruise anti-ship missiles with a nuclear tip - no, really.

I've came to play a different game, I don't want all these things here.
Play Rule the Waves, it's a good game specifically about 1890-1930 naval warfare and designs.

zolobolo
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby zolobolo » Sat Aug 05, 2017 8:36 am

faijeya wrote:
zolobolo wrote:How abouth putting ships under AI control withouth the need for leaders or any similar restraint?

It can be approximated by moving only ships that are interesting to you and pressing autocombat for the turn.
Not that good in my opinion.

Yeah, thought abouth this also lately and it realy should be the same - though I have never tried this method.
But if controlling the fleet is no issue and neither is stability, what is there to be done? :)

faijeya wrote:The first common case is when you contact a civilization in late game, it decides it needs your planets and sends its blob to you.
The second common case is when you've won that first decisive battle against a large enemy, but mopping up and countering moderate threats requires more and more ships which snowball into a large and disparate fleet at the end of the war.

I would love to see such a thing :)
Maybe my approach is wrong, but I never run into an AI led empire that has any sort of big blob fleet. The largest I have encountered in 50 or so plays including over 100 star systems, was a Yoral fleet with around 50 Frigates and 2 battleships - no problem. The game was stable and the fight was over in 5-7 min

If I attack, and am winning, the game is over before my fleet can snawball. Untill then they spread out to conquer

faijeya wrote:
zolobolo wrote:Yes, all these games are based on WW2 tactics

Nope. It's a very simplified take on early 20th century and partly WW1 naval tactics.

While I agree that in these games battleships usually play a much larger role then in WW2, here they are not the dominant force though like in WW1 nor are small crafts like early 20th cent. In SiS, a mix of carriers and battleships are dominating with escorts. It is already quite realistic, but when playing Galciv, MoO (whatever is the latest version number) or ES2, you generally end up with bigger is better in every way.

faijeya wrote:
zolobolo wrote:but in real-life combat units do not go extinct due to tech advance (it is even mostly the other way around)

Yes, they do.
Battleships, zeppelins, tank destroyers, cavalry, torpedo boats...

Meaning combat unit size. Physical or numerical. Large boats, large planes, large tanks or larger infantry sizes do not make smaller ones obsolete, it is usually the other way around. As tech advances, the larger unit the larger the chance that it will become outdated and its back to small sizes again. Exactly the opposite of the small craft get outdated concept used in most space 4X

Today we are still using planes, but most of the actual fighting is done via drones and not carpet bombers. US could still produce huge cruisers but produces tiny destroyers with railguns, and just wait untill they standardise weapon hardpoints on drones... Things get smaller with high tech

faijeya wrote:
zolobolo wrote:A modern destroyer could wipe the floor with all the battleships of WW2 and probably take on the carriers as well when already on it

Killing a battleship is plausible, winning against a carrier - not so much.
Carrier has much better effective range, modern AA systems are ill-suited to target planes with piston engines, a modern destroyer doesn't have any armor to talk about.

WW2 battleship and WW2 carrier against modern destroyer. Destroyer will win every time. Even in contemporary battles, a slight tech disadvantage cannot be overcompensated by size. Point being: small size does not become obsolete. Mostly other way around.

faijeya wrote:
zolobolo wrote:What changes when you are up against a foe with simialr tech, is the roles of different classes: can play around with these if one try to take reality into account (going from ship of the line to escort and from there to patrol boat function for example)

Reality is not fun.
The game as it is does not need drastic paradigm shifts as they happened in reality.

This game already emraces this concept of roles (particularly since railgun rebalance). I do not think it needs to change and hence do not think it would be a good idea to somehow engineer the small vessels out of the fleets. This has been done by other space 4X and did not enjoy it: it becomes boring when all you have to do to counter the enemy fleet more numerious is to roll out a hightech battelship. This is both unrealistic and not fun. Resolving large fleet issue should not sink the game to that level. Admittedly it does resolve the size issues but at what cost

faijeya wrote:Play Rule the Waves, it's a good game specifically about 1890-1930 naval warfare and designs.

Looks like a decent game, but I do need the smell of visuals in the morning

wminsing
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby wminsing » Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:22 pm

Meaning combat unit size. Physical or numerical. Large boats, large planes, large tanks or larger infantry sizes do not make smaller ones obsolete, it is usually the other way around. As tech advances, the larger unit the larger the chance that it will become outdated and its back to small sizes again. Exactly the opposite of the small craft get outdated concept used in most space 4X

Today we are still using planes, but most of the actual fighting is done via drones and not carpet bombers. US could still produce huge cruisers but produces tiny destroyers with railguns, and just wait untill they standardise weapon hardpoints on drones... Things get smaller with high tech


Well.... yes and no. While's true that technology sometimes allows for small units to punch above their weight versus larger units with outdated tech, within a given technology spectrum, individual units tend to grow larger with each passing design iteration as pressure leads to the need for increased capability which nearly always results in a larger platform. Compare the following:

HMS Dreadnought vs. Yamato: ~20,000 tons displacement vs. ~72,000 tons displacement
M4 Sherman vs. M1 Abrams: 32 tons vs 68 tons
USS Essex vs. USS Nimitz: ~33,00 tons displacement vs. ~104,000 tons displacement

Lots more examples of this, compare modern jets to earlier aircraft and you'll see modern fighters have take-off weights that exceed WWII heavy bombers.... Earlier technological eras saw similar developments; the ships of the line that Nelson commanded at Trafalgar in 1805 were similar in design but on average substantially larger and more powerful than the ships his predecessors commanded in 1705.

The USS Zumwalt is not a 'tiny destroyer' for example; she displaces 14,000 tons which makes her nearly as large as the largest cruiser the USN ever fielded (barring the Alaska class) and much bigger than the preceding destroyer class (which themselves displace 10,000 tons). There's nothing small about her!

Technology often makes components smaller, but this is more often used to cram more capability on a military platform than to actually reduce the size of the platform, which is determined by desired mission profile.

Right now SiS basically already simulates this; right now I find that once you hit mid-game and the weapons found there the smallest useful ships are the Escort and Heavy Cruisers, and I absolutely do go in swinging with entire Battlecruiser/Dreadnought fleets if there's a big war that late in the game. Whether is a 'problem' or not is sort of a matter of taste.

Edit: This doesn't by default solve the 'too large battle' problem though; late-game, large maps, I could see an empire easily assembling fleets of dozens of the largest ships....

-Will

zolobolo
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Re: Macro-manage Late game large scale

Postby zolobolo » Mon Aug 07, 2017 5:32 pm

wminsing wrote:Well.... yes and no. While's true that technology sometimes allows for small units to punch above their weight versus larger units with outdated tech, within a given technology spectrum, individual units tend to grow larger with each passing design iteration as pressure leads to the need for increased capability which nearly always results in a larger platform. Compare the following:

HMS Dreadnought vs. Yamato: ~20,000 tons displacement vs. ~72,000 tons displacement
M4 Sherman vs. M1 Abrams: 32 tons vs 68 tons
USS Essex vs. USS Nimitz: ~33,00 tons displacement vs. ~104,000 tons displacement

Lots more examples of this, compare modern jets to earlier aircraft and you'll see modern fighters have take-off weights that exceed WWII heavy bombers.... Earlier technological eras saw similar developments; the ships of the line that Nelson commanded at Trafalgar in 1805 were similar in design but on average substantially larger and more powerful than the ships his predecessors commanded in 1705.

The USS Zumwalt is not a 'tiny destroyer' for example; she displaces 14,000 tons which makes her nearly as large as the largest cruiser the USN ever fielded (barring the Alaska class) and much bigger than the preceding destroyer class (which themselves displace 10,000 tons). There's nothing small about her!

You raise an interesting point and examples to boost, kudos :)

The HMS Dread being a WWI vessel I would consider as an inferior but direct descendant of the Yamato, the later being the biggest and baddest battleship, a type of vessel which at this point is considered so obsolete that none of the countries are maintaining any of them opting instead for destroyers and carriers (if they afford them)

I didn't think much about tanks in this regard, and when I do I mostly think of them having both reached and passed their golden age in WWII with T34 being golden example of efficiency and Tiger II of engineering. Comparing Tiger II to the Armata which is considered one of the best modern tanks and coming out recently as one of the largest it is still shorter and lower then the Tiger II... And all this with active, passive defence, modular construct, protected inner shell for crew, and all sorts of goodies mostly classified at this point.
Not considering the above I would wager that tanks will even evolve towards this direction though this is clearly speculation at this point: http://www.timesofisrael.com/israels-unmanned-border-patrols/

Again, the carriers are of identical type and represent the evolution of the same design. This, just like in case of tanks, battleships and everything else will get bigger and bigger, and then outdated :) Reason being in this particular case:
Bomber: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northrop_Grumman_X-47
Fighter: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unmanned_combat_aerial_vehicle
If anyone will seriously be building a new carrier (and not just for show ;) ), I would expect it to have a much smaller footprint for hosting the above.

The above goes also for the evolution of fighters, drones being the next incarnation of fighters/bombers

My point being: Yes, the same class might get bigger over time as they stuff ever more things into it and the technology becomes mature, but it does not make small combat roles obsolete and over time even gets outclassed by their them as those get the new tech faster and that is why they stay relevant. Staying at the example of real-life ships: battlehips did not make destroyers and frigates obsolete, the battleship itself became obsolete and Cruisers are currently also struggling to survive.

I give you this: the destroyers did get bigger over time themselfes, and while one could argue that they could be considered Cruisers compared to WW2 sizes, this sort of falls in line with the evolution of the combat unit role and I expect them to get smaller again.

I do also expect (or rather wish :)) that the battleships will make a comeback, once the railgun tech becomes more advanced and their role as a mobile artillery fortress becomes usefull again aka: open hostilities between large fleets are expected on the seas (estimate: when the US built world-peace keeping system falls apart, and a new arms race errupts between China, US, Russia, Iran and Brazil (these guys also really know how to wage wars :))

Overall I do not mind Destroyers getting obsolete toward the end game as long as Cruisers remain the de-facto PD screen and torpedo boats for the large ships, but a battle consosting of only battleships and dreads sounds like a boring engagement (though I have never ever seen a dread from an AI. Are you playin on the hardest difficulty with sparse stars numbering above 100?

I think that an optimal solution is to adjust the upkeep costs (which is already planned) in a way that battleships, dreds and Disco-balls get discuistingly expensive to maintain and tell the AI to only build a handfull of these if it can afford them and tell it right after that ot to spam the map full with Destroyers and frigates. A slight increase of production cost for huge hulls would also go a long way preventing a hidious blob.

As for specific scenarios (I wish to try out once myself if I know how to), we only need to increase the agressiveness of the AI. It should not take longer then 400 turns to finish a large map, as at that point the winner should be clear even if the others have disco-balls galore. If the AI is more willing to enngage into combat, the whole problematic becomes mute: the player either allies with the AI, or faces it on the battle-space :)


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