Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

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zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:46 pm

Usually I am playing on normal difficult and all settings on default except star system count where I add +50% - AI functions realy well on this level as it has time to prepare and expand before an intial confrontation

Tested a couple of games though on the DEV build on default size and found that alliances in this state lead to one of two outcomes:
1. Early game loss to player (when not engaging with the mechanic)
2. Early victory for the player latest at mid-game when one alliance overpowers the other

Like I said, tihs is not hte case in games where there are more systems to go around but it might be worth thinking abouth decreasing the speed alliances can be created e.g.: by having pisitive relationship due to common enemies build up gradually

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sun Aug 26, 2018 4:44 pm

One logical way to spice up the endgame would be to handle Arda Seed as a standalone faction with diplo relatioship with everyone on the map - all the peaces seem to be in place for this

The faction would behave like all the others with the exception of:
1. Treaties would not be avaialble for this faction (including Alliance)
2. Buying Arda tech and invading their nests would serve to stear the relationship - this is partially already the case between player and Arda Seed, but it should also effect other factions: depending on their stance toward the Arda, they should get negative or positive diplo affect towards each other when the other conducts trade/raid with the Arda

This would result in early and mid-game alliances being challenged in late-mid to late game and a new power mechanic emerging where the attituted towards the Arda is the key attribute that divides the remaining empires into two factions

This mechanic could still allow for a lot of flexibility: the player could chose to buy 1-2 potent tech before the negative affect for ampires hostile towards the Arda would aggregate up too much, but if pushed too far, even alliances should be canceled to make the mid to late game dynamic

If on top of this, a third mechanic would be introduced to diplomacy: havign the AI react ot the winning condition: galactic council votes and having diplo menalty if the top 3 candidates do not vote for each other - the three mechanics (early to mid-game alliances groups, Arda Seed pro/contra and Galacitc Council leadership candidates) would make the late game pretty much unpredictable early on.

Currently it is of course very easy to hold onto the first alliances the player strikes right at the early game and the main competitors can be identified and targeted easily during mid-game - having these additional 1-2 mechanics affecting diplomacy would make controlling the outcome of the game much more challenging and surprising

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sat Sep 01, 2018 12:29 pm

Systems that an allies ally explored also pop as as explored systems for the player even though player is not allied to allies ally

Not sue if this is intended - not necessary an issue just caused a bit of headscraching where the notifications and system exploration is coming from

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sat Sep 01, 2018 1:39 pm

Ally requests player to declare war on its enemy but hte player is already at war with that faction

This does not casue an issue but gives additional relationship bonus to the player when "accepting" the request which is unneded advantage + micro
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zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sat Sep 01, 2018 4:58 pm

Ashdars AI colonised a system breaking their word towards their allies the Human AI to do so - this is great stuff, love that the AI is allowed to break its promise :)

This resulted into a -100 relationship towards Humans, but as seen below the alliance has not been broken up like in a similar case I had toards another AI empire
Maybe the AI is immune to alliance breaking due to negative relationship or a bug?

I was looking forward to these two fighting as they are the only two major powers left except for the player
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zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Thu Sep 06, 2018 6:06 pm

Colonials declare war on player (Imperials) though the two empires are in alliance
Assitionally: after colonials declare war on their ally with over 100+ relatiosnhip, they also offer to go into war agaisnt their common enemy the Phidi

I do not mind allies declaring war on each other but there should be a clear a for it like: you did not vote for us in the council tohugh we have larger pop - In this case hovewer, I think this is a bug that might be tied into the event of the ally offering to join the war (though I had this even multiple times and never this side-effect so far)
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zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sat Sep 15, 2018 9:14 pm

Tinkers offer peace to the player but demanding payment in return even though they have lost around 2/3 of their planets and are outmatched in all resources by a factor of 2 - and the player just won the Galactic council vote :)

The only KPI they are ahead is the number of vessels: 80 for player and 100 for AI
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zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sat Sep 22, 2018 11:09 am

When an AI wins the Galacic Council vote, there is no indication of how non-allied AI empires have decided after the vote: did they accept or reject the result?

Currently, it seems that nothing changes betwene AI empires after the vote even if one of them wins. Those in war stay in war and those allied to the winner naturaly stay like that

The player gets a prompt where the result can be rejected in which case all empires declare war on the player: this is fine, but I would accept the following to also happen:
1. Those who have voted for the winner or have accept4ed the results, are automatically allied to the winner representing the winners pwoer over them now as they are in the leader seat of the council
2. Those who reject the winner, continue to fight against it or are declared war by the winner party. These factions do not necesseraly need to ally among themselfes automatically but a notification would go a long way of informing the player on what has happened

Thus after AI GC vote win, all that have voted for the winner (allies) and those who have accepted the result become allies
Everyone else is declared war upon by the alliance - but these factions should not autoamtically declare war on each other after the result (as they have not accepted the result)

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Arioch
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby Arioch » Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:45 am

Only the player can reject the result and choose to keep playing. The AI can't reject the result -- if you win, it's over.

We need to add a "Win" UI element that gives the player the opportunity to stop playing after a win, to avoid the feeling that the game never ends. Hopefully that will be in the next update.

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:56 am

Sounds good -a win exit button should help a lot of cases for sure: if you can smack a generic win visualisation in there that would be perfect

I was thinking abouth the above as there might be cases (like it was for me) that the AI has won the election.
In this case, the player will obviously not take and exit even if there is a button for that unless they are hopefully outnumbered right?
I mean that is what most of us are craving for: a fight against a strong enemy with lots of fleet on fleet action, strategy and tactics galore:)

So my suggestion was simply to not have enemies of the winner automatically declare war on the player - does that make sense?

As they are fighting the same enemy and have also not voted for it, why would they join the war for their sake while still fighting them at the same time? They would either close in on an alliance cementing the fact that the GC winner is lord of everything or would not go into war on their side right? - What I mean is that there is specifically a rule that is not needed here: the auto declaration of war from everyone against the player when rejecting the winner: it makes sense that the winner and its allies do that but not for their enemies while they also stay beign hteir enemies while doing so :)

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sun Sep 23, 2018 3:26 pm

I have lost my first game on all default settings (normal difficulty) on Huge Galaxy yesterday

It was a great game as I could see where I could have gone another direction during the game to win and it had a lot to do with the new alliance mechanic: Wasn't even a cheap defeat altough I have lost the GC vote against another empire, I actually lost because of the declaration of wars on my Human faction: since I was buying slaves from Marauders the whole game and freed them to get the additional prpduction bonuses, they all started rebelling due to the war penalty for their respective races.

We need games like this that motivate to restart a new game right away and do things differently while also posing a looming threat during any playthrough that we can actually loose. I game lost fair and square is a great testimony to the mechanics and AI :)

Decided to replay the game to test out a few things on this gem of a session and here is what I found:
1. Needed to go around 90 turns back to have a fighting chance of winning this: this is a long way during which the player did not have any say anymore on the overall result of things and is due to the somewhat rigid alliance system. I am not saying this should be altered but rather it should definitively not be made more rigid :)
2. An AIs got stuck in its starting location due to the expansion logic issues - already reported it for other sessions - The A in question could have altered the end result in a number of ways but because of this issue, it did not contirbute to the env variables which is a shame
3. I am almost sure the AI recieves some metal bonus and think it does not need it anymore - can I test the game withouth this bonus? Maybe it can be switched off in a config file? This is again not a big issue as it seems to be very subtle but would prefer playing withouth it on Normal
4. Humans are very late starters - also reported this separately. This is mostly due to their no-bonuses pop type which puts them in increasing disadvantage as the game progresses. It can be overcome of course with some luck and a solid expansion strategy but the player needs to play survival the first 100 turns instead of partaking in interesting conflicts

Alltogether the balance of the game is in a very good place and if the expansion issue is resolved, the AI could be taken away some bonuses with ease withouth risking mutilation: this is recommended though so that the player can have more options on how to go abouth each playthrough and not being necesseraly forced into exploits or best-practices during each session

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Arioch
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby Arioch » Sun Sep 23, 2018 3:31 pm

If you as the player defy the outcome of the election, then everyone who is not your ally declares war on you. You are defying the will of the people, and so you are enemy number one, regardless of what the relations are with the faction that won.

This is an alternative to the game simply ending if you lose the election (as it does in many games with a diplomatic victory), which feels weird if you happen to be the strongest power in the universe, so you're given an opportunity to fight everyone instead.

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Wed Sep 26, 2018 8:05 pm

When player accepts enemy offer for peace only one of its allys (the one with the best relation to the plyer empire) goes into peace with the faction, the other ally seem to stay in war stance and asks the player the next turn to go into war against hte faction it has just made peace with. Relationship of the second ally is also over 100 towards the player so it does not seem to be the determing factior if they also go into peace - maybe the code only covers the first ally and leaves all the rest intact in their war

Ally asks the player to join its war against an enemy wiht which the player is already at war with: accepting the request yields relationship bonus for the player although the war is already ongoing - the ally has offered to jon the war in the beignning but player said no help is needed that is why ally was not yet in war

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Wed Sep 26, 2018 8:15 pm

Arioch wrote:If you as the player defy the outcome of the election, then everyone who is not your ally declares war on you. You are defying the will of the people, and so you are enemy number one, regardless of what the relations are with the faction that won.

This is an alternative to the game simply ending if you lose the election (as it does in many games with a diplomatic victory), which feels weird if you happen to be the strongest power in the universe, so you're given an opportunity to fight everyone instead.

Yes I agree that it is a good idea to do this and makes sense but shouldnt the former enemies ally with the winner after the election as they have clearly accepted their new ruler if they are willing to go into war with the player with whom they do not even have bad relationship with?

Having all other weaker empires joining the winner would autoamtically lead to two big alliances duking it out. As is right now, the weak empires still continue their futile war against the winner + also have to fight the player and its potential allies. Maybe having them join the winner would laead to even more interesting scnearios + the player would really feel the diference between "just" waring gainst the dominant faction vs letting them win the GC vote and then having to fight everyone

To put it into game mechanic language: if the player knows that the war will automatically break out after the GC vote, they are motivated to win allies and prep for war before that- this is good. If the player knows that all non-allies will join the winner in the war, making allies and preparing to war becomes even more of an emergency: loosing the vote does not only mean a declaration of war in the current alliance state but also having to face an enemy whose power is multiplied afterwards and which does not wages war within itself. The effect is thus multiplied and so is the risk of each vote

But if you think this can be also doen via the new diplomacy mechanic that is fine (need to test if the common enemy relationship bonus is enough for the small factions to close an alliance with the winner even if they were hostile before)

OR: if you want to use only in-game mechanics you could opt to give a consdierable relationship penalty towards the player and bonus towards the winner so that everything plays out dynamically: the war on the player and the alliance towards the winner and this way the player also has some sense of control over the events which is also a plus

zolobolo
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Re: Testing the Current Diplomacy Changes

Postby zolobolo » Sun Oct 07, 2018 8:25 pm

The AI seems very reluctant to offer peace treaty even when starting the war and after loosing most of its territorry and ships.

I think there should be a much lower barrier to the offer being triggered when the AI has declared war on someone else (especially the player) as:
1. This would mean that the other faction probably is not that invested in the war (busy with other things - or wars) and woudl accept
2. Offering the peace and payment in exhange early on makes it much more probable for the other party to accept due to above and thus give time for the agressor to recover from its losses after their bad decision
3. Offering the payment when the faction is still strong does not put such a burden on their budget (though they are way OP in this so prboably never does)
4. The player is motivated to accept as else they are forced into eliminating the other faction entirely which leads to unwatned combat, tedious mockup and then instant win

Thus for their own enjoyement, most players would accept and concentrate on whatever they were doing before (even if it is preparing for war with that faciton :)) and enjoying the reward for the victory by recieveing due payment. This would of course prolong the lifespam of all empires and the game itself while those players who would like to put an swift and agressive end ot the game can still choose to do so and ignore the offer

Example: I had a gear game going on assimilating all minor factions but avoiding conflict with a mayor empire that was 2X the size and pop of mine and technologically way more advanced. I was looking forward to finalyl a game with end-game tech involved to decie the outsome but jsut as I was gearing up they have declared war on me - so far this is perfect
But then I beat them in 10:1 occasion and started to also take their tech and roling out ships with equal level. At this time I was expecting the AI to offer a truce and payment as they have suffered heavy losses, a bunch of their system were facing imminent invasion, but still had a powerfull striking force which I wanted to avoid confronting directly. I wanted to take a truce had it been offered as I had fun in the battles but didn't want to push my luck and risk ending the game, but continue to tidy up my planets and modernise the fleets. Would have been a win-win scneario but withouth an offer the AI is forcing the game to end on the player.


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