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Low Priority UFO Growth behaviour

Discussion in 'Data' started by FilmBoy84, Oct 23, 2017.

  1. FilmBoy84

    FilmBoy84 Well-Known Member Tester Researcher
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    UFOPedia thankfully hosts a wealth of information on many subjects, including this one as discussed here:
    http://www.ufopaedia.org/index.php/Alien_Dimension_(Apocalypse)#UFO_Growth

    However, a problem that has frustrated me with vanilla is that after week four, many UFO's stop being produced. This can create a situation, whereby, if X-COM is particularly good at destroying UFOs, many of the alien "missions" in the cityscape stop being activated and the play becomes "repetitive" to say the least.

    Additionally, the Overspawn, that can only be dropped from week eight onwards may be completely circumvented as the Aliens don't appear to go on overspawn drop missions if you destroy all of the low level UFOs in the alien dimension (presumably a bug). Instead only alternating missions of Motherships and Battleships, occasionally bombers too, will just keep dropping aliens into the cityscape or destroying buildings, nothing else...

    In a game where i artificially created a situation to keep the low level UFOs and knocked out one or two of the big ones, i started to get VERY strange mixes of UFOs on a variety of missions. For example, Battleships with Alien Probes or scouts that would go on "Scout" missions. Bombers that came with Destroyers and proceeded to level the city; not just one building before retreating; they stayed until shot down and many other bizarre variations of the missions described here: http://www.ufopaedia.org/index.php/UFO_Incursions_(Apocalypse) (Note this list is NOT comprehensive, for example Battleships can drop overspawn yet this page says that only motherships can)

    The whole late game was much more fun as a result; that mix of UFOs is needed to keep the late game missions interesting!

    For this reason, i propose that an option is added to OpenApoc to allow the spawning of just a single UFO of the lower level types every week after week four to keep their functionality available for missions in the cityscape and allow the aliens more "choice" over which missions they can conduct.

    After-all, wars encourage and INCREASE in productivity, not a steady decline as the current model of UFO growth suggests... The only way of reducing UFO growth should be by destroying the appropriate building, until that point the aliens would surely be trying to ramp up production to combat an ever stronger X-COM?

    It would be good to know the thoughts of others on this.
     
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  2. makus

    makus Designer, forum admin Administrator Designer/Artist
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    maybe we should create topic where we can mention all possible change to balance that not
    requare heavy code or graphic intrusion but help create more balanced and interest gameplay...
    anyone can write there and i or other admins will compile all ideas in one slender concept in first post...
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2017
  3. FilmBoy84

    FilmBoy84 Well-Known Member Tester Researcher
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    That sounds like a wise idea, i'll post stuff as i find it in testing to the appropriate threads if the admins want to make such a thread =]
    This thread however i believe covers what is in effect a vanilla "oversight" masquerading as bug so not sure how you all want to deal with it as the UFO decline does create problems with vanilla play (such as the overspawn drop issue).
     
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  4. Istrebitel

    Istrebitel Well-Known Member Official Developer Administrator
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    vanilla logic was to have templates of produced ufos (what types in what amount) and final template, for 20+week, did only have the biggest ones
    vanilla logic also was to produce 100% of the template if factory is up, and nothing if you killed the building

    It is very easy to implement it differently so that modders can do whatever they want with it.

    Like, you can assign a list of random boundaries for every building that is produced while building is up, or you can assign a list to be produced while it's up and while it's destroyed, so that the more you destroy of alien dimensions, the bigger their desperate fleet gets. It would be possible to do in a matter of one hour programming, if someone wishes to.
     
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  5. FilmBoy84

    FilmBoy84 Well-Known Member Tester Researcher
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    Ive been thinking of a system that hybridises UFO growth according to both the current model and X-COM score (which Alien weapon development appears to be also tied to)

    One change for example would be that the higher the weekly score; the more UFO Type 4 (Fast Attack) craft are spawned to protect the fleets of UFOs the aliens send into Mega Primus. However the appearance of the fast attack craft is still limited to the week it first appears in the current table - only after that point is the number spawned tied to score

    Im trying to get a formula together for each craft and how it ties to each week and X-COM score, but in effect, and using UFO Type 4 as my example; something similar to the following is what i propose:

    Number allocated for week (from table) + (XCOM Score / 300 [pts] and rounded DOWN) = Number spawned at start of week

    So, for example in WEEK2, with an X-COM score of 966 it would look something like this...

    2 + (966/300=3.22=3) = 5x UFO Type 4 spawned in Week 2

    On weeks where NO UFO of that type is set to spawn (Let's say week 7), then the equation would be as follows (providing it is after week 2 when UFO type 4 appears) and with an X-COM score of 643 as an example:

    0 + (643/300=2.143=2) = 2x UFO Type 4 spawned in Week 7

    This in effect means that the more able X-COM is to defend itself from UFOs the more are spawned until X-COM destroys the UFO Growth Building and would go a long way to making the end of the game more challenging as more and more UFOs appear as X-COM gets more successful at destroying them, unlike the slow death the Aliens currently suffer.

    EDIT: Uploaded a proposed table containing score divider values for EVERY UFO type ;)

    So, on hard mode, in week 10 with X-COM having a score the previous week of 1700 the following UFOs would spawn:

    UFO 1 - 0+(1700/250=6.8=6) = 6x UFO Type 1
    UFO 2 - 1+(1700/250=6.8=6) = 7x UFO Type 2
    UFO 3 - 0+(1700/300=5.66=5) = 5x UFO Type 3
    UFO 4 - 0+(1700/300=5.66=5) = 5x UFO Type 4
    UFO 5 - 0+(1700/500=3.40=3) = 3x UFO Type 5
    UFO 6 - 0+(1700/600=2.83=2) = 2x UFO Type 6
    UFO 7 - 1+(1700/500=3.40=3) = 4x UFO Type 7
    UFO 8 - 0+(1700/600=2.83=2) = 2x UFO Type 8
    UFO 9 - 0+(1700/1200=1.41=1) = 1x UFO Type 9
    UFO 10 - 0+(1700/1700=1=1) = 1x UFO Type 10

    This of course would all be capped to the Vanilla figures for MAXIMUM number of each craft type
    Although i would argue that the user should be able to change these values via settings too

    It seems the proposed calculation works, even at week 10 the aliens are not going to run out of UFOs and still have enough for MULTIPLE invasions
     

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    Last edited: Jan 20, 2018 at 18:01
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