incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

A space strategy macromanagement game with turnbased battles.
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jack1974
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incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by jack1974 » Mon Jul 14, 2008 4:29 pm

The new supermegaupdate 1.0.3 is coming 99% tomorrow :)

I have only a few doubts left. Here they are, maybe you can help me with some feedback on what you think, even if probably best to wait the beta that should be up tomorrow so you can see why I have some of those doubts. Anyway I post them now, so after you play the beta, or even now, you can discuss them!

1) limiting ship weaponry: should I limit certain type of weapon/attack only to some ship classes? right now I haven't, so you can have even interceptors or scout attempting to assault an enemy ship, as long as they have the Assault Pod device installed. I'm not sure that this is good, I'd prefer to limit that kind of attack only to assault ship class.

2) I've tried to "speedup" the game considerably, with the real-time option but also in the battles. Since I haven't implemented yet waypoint traveling for the ships in the wargame, should I make the maps smaller than they're now? or they're fine?

3) CPU now uses custom ships too in the battle, but even if he is not cheating, I find the game much harder now, because customizing the ship you can also place a moderately powerful weapon on scout, and the CPU does that combined with sneak attacks, and it's really hard! So after you play the beta please let me know what is your impression now (since many said the game was too easy, probably now is fine?)

Going to relax a while now - preparing for tomorrow release! 8)

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jack1974
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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by jack1974 » Tue Jul 15, 2008 5:54 pm

I should shut up sometimes...Of course, wasn't able to finish it by today :mrgreen: some unexpected health troubles of one of my cats delayed the release. And tomorrow parents come to visit me... ok let's say I'll release the update this weekend, will be more accurate!

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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by jack1974 » Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:56 pm

Another update: everything is ready except the load/save of ship templates. In the end I thought that sharing the ships design automatically between all your games would have lead to possible future bugs. For example, you make custom design 9 and save the game, then in another match you delete the design 9, then quit and reload the old one. Result, the loaded game would refer to a missing design! :roll:

So now I'm going to implement a sort of small pop-up window that will let you save your best design on disk, so you can reuse them between matches, even though the random ship generator is quite fun to use (it creates automatically a ship).

I have made TONS of minor changes. For example now the motherships have really an impact on the game, but takes LOT of time to build. Before they were just strong, but you could defeat them with 3-4 other ships. Now, you'll have hard time against one of them... I'm also adding some more powerful random neutral weapons because I noticed that even with the CPU custom ship, most of neutral weapons are way less powerful than the Blue/Red ones, so they needed some extra firepower :)

If all goes well, tomorrow is really the beta release day!! wish me luck :mrgreen:

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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by jack1974 » Sat Jul 19, 2008 7:02 pm

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=578

beta is out. Probably will change some minor things. I don't like indeed that now with custom ships you can put the Assault Pod on any ship, so during the game you can be assaulted with any enemy... it's a bit weird, I think I'm going to limit the Assault to be placed only on Transport Ships class and stop!

Now go play the best space wargame ever!! 8)

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iulius
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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by iulius » Mon Jul 21, 2008 10:58 am

I've done a quick play at the new update. I LOVE the new skirmish mode! now even people that just want to get into the battle without much thinking (like me) can do it! great job, so far didn't find any bug.

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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by jack1974 » Mon Jul 21, 2008 3:22 pm

Thanks, I'm waiting to see if anyone reports any bugs before releasing it officially on my site. If I don't get any report will publish it probably next weekend :)

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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by biff » Wed Jul 23, 2008 4:47 am

Ok so I downloaded and played the Beta for a short while and here are my thoughts both on it and a few remaining comments on version 1.02. First my comments on your three questions.

1 - Yes, at the least you should limit the assault pods to the transports.
2 - Map sizes are fine although I don't see why the galaxy map is always a bit larger than the window or the screen causing you to scroll a little bit to see all of it. Why not just make it fit the window or screen in the first place.
3 - Yes the game is harder in my opinion. I'm seriously debating if the neutral or CPU should have customs ships or weapons. Maybe the neutrals should have the standard weapons and only the CPU gets the custom ships? Or maybe this is something that should be user selectable.

Here are the rest of my thoughts and comments:

1 - the upgrade splash screen doesn't realize that the 1.03 beta is newer than 1.02 and asks if I want to install version 1.02
2 - battle screen scrolling is much faster - but doesn't work at all in "window" mode only in full screen
3 - the battle screen still centres on the selected ship but not quite as badly as it used to. Still too much for my taste though. What if you just removed this completely or let users select it?
4 - the auto turn advance is good but let us turn it off or pause it during the game while we think. I also lost he game as I didn't get the cursor to my home planet fast enough to defend it before the turn automatically moved ahead. Perhaps after each battle you should have to confirm the restart of the automatic function
5 - the spinning turn text telling you whose turn it is during the battles is still too much and takes too long.
6 - I think you should allow the use of the "+" and "-" keys with shift rather than just the ones on the numeric keyboard since some laptops don't have dedicated numeric keypads
7 - I had a transport show as 150% built and then 300% and a second one as 200%. Neither of them appeared on my inventory when I went into battle. When I went to remove the overbuilt ships from the cue military screen they reverted to 75% and then rebuilt themselves to 100% and were usable - strange.
8 - I think the game is still too slow off the start - why not begin with some ships built?
9 - I was at +8 for income and then increased my population to try and increase my income and it went down to +1. Moving my politicians up to 20% fixed this but it seems strange. Shouldn't I get more tax income from a larger population?
10 - I added a scout to the fleet build cue and the existing completed scouts went down to 50% & 75% each and then built up.
11 - It's good to see the battlefield type shown on the upper corner of the battle screen
12 - In a previous post about version 1.02 I talked about how sometimes I was able to use the captured enemy ships in the next battles. I like this and think it is a good idea. I hope it hasn't been changed.
13 - The battle options window needs a way to get directly back to battle without having to go to the load/save screen and then back to the battle
14 - At one point I captured an enemy scout with my transport and it showed "-1" movement. What's that all about?
15 - I noticed that when attacking a system a second time you don't always attack on the same "side" of the map. I think this is a good way to do this.
16 - In vers 1.02 there were times when the enemy attacking my system seemed to have one additional grid space off the map to move to and fire from. Not very fair I think as there is no way to target them even if you are next to them.
17 - The "next" and "previous" buttons in ship placement worked once and then stopped although I know there were more than 8 ships available to me. I think this may have been caused by my clicking outside the Supernova game window as I was using the window mode rather than full screen so that I could type notes as I played.
18 - At one point I had a bunch of blank spaces in the available ships slots on the placement screen as if I had been randomly restricted to the 8 ships that I could control rather than it being my choice. I also couldn't get to the next row of ships due to my problem noted in 17.
19 - In 1.02 and in the Beta, enemy ships often just seem to move back and forth between grid spaces or they move 4 spaces in one direction and then one space back - why? It seems like a waste of time.
20 - The enemy movement still needs to be faster.
21 - I still don't know why one or more of my ships flash when the enemy moves - is it because they are "sensing" that there is enemy ship movement near then even if it doesn't show on the map?
22 - Captured ships seem to go back into my fleet at the end of a battle. I don't know if this happened in vers 1.02 or not. I'm not sure if this is a good thing or not either.
23 - It seem like many of the weapons now regenerate every turn instead of every second turn. I liked the old way as it took more planning to destroy the enemy ships if you could only fire some weapons every turn and others every other turn or more.
24 - Since ships run out of missiles more often - how about a resupply type of ship that can resupply a ship that is out of ammo?
25 - In vers 1.02 and in the beta the area of space that are visible and not hidden have very square borders at the 12, 3, 6, and 9 o'clock positions.
26 - My second biggest complaint - the END TURN button should not be overlaid on the top space of the map. On several occasions I have been selecting a ship and clicked too close to the END TURN button and accidentally ended my turn. This is inevitable when there is a ship partially hidden under the END TURN button. Couldn't this be in a corner or at least off the playable map area?

In general the game seems much harder although at one point (thanks to the auto timing) I had lots of money and resources to build ships - it still seems that the enemy expands very quickly compared to me though.

Thanks for all the hard work.

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jack1974
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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by jack1974 » Wed Jul 23, 2008 6:47 am

Thanks for the feedback! :) about the first 3 comments, yes I'm going to restrict assault pods only to transport (now is too hard because every enemy ship can have it), and can think indeed to have the galaxy map not scrollable (should resize the movement ranges a bit). About the difficulty, which setting are you using? if in the option you've choose the max difficulty, then it's ok - that should be really the maximum difficulty level (I know some players always complain about the game that's too easy!).

Now about the rest:
1) this is normal since I haven't yet update the server code check :)
2) it works but I shrinked the active zones around the border. Before you would need to be around 20-30 pixels from the border with the mouse to activate scroll, now reduced it. Is true that I test it fullscreen though, probably is better to keep it as before
3) well surely could make this optional, and maybe use rightmouse to center screen
4) the autoturn can be adjusted with + and -. If you press - lot of time you end up with game speed=paused. At that point, the game work like before: you have to press enter to end the turn, unless you restart the speed with +. I am going to make the game autopause if you get attacked in any system though.
5) maybe I can remove it completely :lol:
6) I tried on my ibook and using Fn+the keypad correspondent key, it worked! maybe I could also add some buttons to use the mouse :)
7 - 10 -12 - 22) this are all related. In theory you can't use captured ship on future battles. Expecially now with custom ship, it won't work and cause bugs - I thought I had it removed but apparently not, the weird percentage in building you got are because the game wrongly added some enemy ships to your fleet, need to fix it!
8) hm well on this one I disagree, especially now with real-time turns takes few turn to build some ships ;)
9) yes you get more but if I remember correctly to balance the game had put more influence on the percentage of politician you set, since the money income vs the population is very unbalanced: I mean you get maybe +1 for every billion of people, since every new planet can add minimum +4 population. It's a bit weird I know, but I found that otherwise you get really a lot of money. Probably need to balance better or find another way in future updates for this.
13) hehe there is: if you click on the same button "Battle Options" it closes the pop-up window! but isn't really clear indeed, so I'm going to add an extra button "Close" below the window
14) the same turn when you capture the ship, it can't move, but can fire. So that's why you get -1 movement. The next turn the ship can move again normally
16) Ah ok, that is a bug indeed, will check it
17 - 18) ok some more bugs with ship placements buttons
19) well doing computer AI is hard... they should only move away from ship when they can't fire or are damaged :)
20) yes, will try to speedup it
21) your ship that flash is current enemy's target :)
23) hm ok interesting that you think this way too. I did a speedup of some weapons because some people complained about the fact that they couldn't fire. I thought it was wrong, but I changed it anyway: I guess I need to start listening only to true wargamer fans like you (and me!) and not everyone's complaints!
24) a resupply ship is really a cool idea! I could add a module that can be installed only on transports, so they would have even this extra nice feature. Not in this version, but I wrote down as an addon for new updates :)
25) ah yes, this is a small bug in displaying the fog of war (is only a gfx bug)
26) yes definitely need to change this - it's too annoying!!

thanks for all the comments, I'm going to fix the worst annoying bugs and then release this update officially. Of course, still more updates will come in future from users feedback ;)

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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by biff » Wed Jul 23, 2008 6:13 pm

Hi,

I'm set for about 60% difficulty. This is what I had for both 1.02 and 1.03. If the new version is harder due to the enemies having custom ships then maybe I just need to reduce this a bit.

2 - I didn't notice a change in the active zones around the border but I didn't play in full screen for very long. In any case I like the faster scrolling a lot.
3 - watch out for right mouse key, some of us have laptops with scroll pads instead.
4 - ok but what about using the P key to pause the game directly? Autopause when attacked is a good idea.
5 - or just have it appear briefly during the voice over and then disappear without spinning away
6 - I didn't try the Fn key combo you mentioned - sounds like a good option for me
7/10/12/22 - good to know it can be fixed. Too bad enemy ships won't be able to be used. I think it was fun to have a few of them in my fleet from time to time. Interestingly they didn't seem to have their full movement which seemed appropriate for a captured ship.
8 - OK I'll keep playing and get used to it
9 - I'll keep playing and let you know how it works out. I didn't notice this so much in vers 1.02 but maybe I wasn't paying attention
13 - ahhhh! I didn't think to try that.
14 - ok I never noticed this -1 movement in vers 1.02. I recall it just showed as 0
19 - yes I imagine that programming the enemy ships isn't easy. The other weird thing is that often an enemy transport will move right up against one of my ships but then not attack it, even if it's a scout. Doesn't happen all the time but often enough to be unusual.
20 - thanks, sitting there listening to them "swoosh" around without seeing anything is a bit annoying.
21 - thanks for clearing that up. It may be a target but they don't always shoot at it BTW.
23 - well I'm just one voice and at the beginning it was frustrating to fire so slowly but you get used to it. Plus it seemed that in 1.02 there were some ships that could fire every turn even if most couldn't. maybe it's just a matter of reducing the number of weapons that fire every turn but still leaving some that can.
24 - it would only be useful for some of the really long battles where ships run out of missiles but I think adding it to transports is a great idea. It would keep them useful even after their crew gets reduced so much they can't attack other ships anymore.
26 - thank you, thank you, thank you

Looking forward to the official update.

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Re: incoming update 1.0.3 - some doubts

Post by jack1974 » Thu Jul 24, 2008 6:24 pm

I've almost finished fixing all your bugs 8) also, I've speedup the computer AI incredibly - and was even easier, in practice any movement outside of view range (fogged) is done instantly (you gain lot of speed with that).
I've also limited assaults to transports only. I won't be able to add the resupply thing yet, but will be done on next update.
Also, on next update I plan to limit the number of ship for each battle. I noticed now in practice nobody really forces you to rush into battle - you can have a big fleet already of scouts etc. Now I want to limit the number of ships based on the size of the starsystem. This should add an extra strategy element so that you can win not only using brute force!
I'll probably upload new beta version (which is almost the official release since there shouldn't be any more bugs) tomorrow evening.

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