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#1 Deimos

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Posted 08 June 2003 - 11:34 PM

I was talking with a long time friend and wargamer today about a topic I mentioned to Stewy about playtesting new improved never before seen UFO designs. We talked for quite a while about tactical designs and what measures the aliens would take to make the ufo difficult to take.

One of the designs for an alien warship was this:

Ground level 5 drive units shaped in a hexagon, each has a power source and control centre. A 6th node gives access to the first level via a double width doorway with an elevator access to the first floor. These would be situated at each corner of of the craft.

First floor has maybe two or three rooms spaced around the level with another elevator access to the second level situated at the opposite end to the ground level access. Inbetween these rooms and elevators would be (if we were using the squares system) single width walls spaced out in a rough checkerboard pattern. This is so that there is no clear path to the next level and is perfect for the enemy to lay in ambush and set up deadly fields of fire. It would if the player bought in their blaster bombs be near impossible to use them due to the single unit width distance between the walls.

The fluff text for this could be (and we discussed this too :))that the stratigic placing of these walls give superior structural strength to the battleship and enables it to withstand huge amounts of damage.

This layout would be repeated around the edges of the second floor and the thrid floor would be another maze like structure (to stop those aerial insertions).

The second floor is where the command crew would be along with an armoury and elerium generators for the craft's weapons. Both of those would be detonatable and would casue serious damage to the whole level. Think an armoury full of Blaster bombs and you're on the right track. This is probably where the commander would be located. There would be maybe two parallel corridors and one that runs around the outer area of the ship. This would have the structural enhancers around them as the floors above and below.

The armoury I think would be located at the centre of the ship and access would be from the corridors. Think along the lines of a double + and you'll get the basic layout. The elerium generators would be in a room at the front edge of the ship and could be manned by a navigator or soldier with high reactions.

Supply ship. This one would be similar in design to the original but instead of having the two single width doors on the one side of the craft there would be an extra double width door on the opposite side of the craft with a 2x2 elevator directly inside the doorway. This would lead to the second floor only.

Ground floor. Three UFO power sources in a rectangular room but each room is sealed from each other by a wall with a door between each reactor. Surrounding this would be the outer shell which contains the 2x2 elevators and one single elevator to the third floor inbetween the outer shell of the UFO and the reactor chabmer on the opposite side to the 2x2.

Second floor. Open plan apart from the 2x2 elevator room and another 1x1 elevator room across the other side. Within this area would be the alien surgery units and meat processing units that always had the cow suspended from it. There would also be randomly placed gestation tanks for storing the food, this would provide the hiding places for the aliens as well as the surgery tables.

Third floor. In the original design I didn't see much point to the long corridor nearest the screen as not once have I ever encountered an alien on it. So I suggest the third floor has more rooms each connected to the other by way of a single width door. That way there are potential kill zones at each room enterance (in a similar way to the medium scout). The command crew can be somewhere within this area. Each room will have 1x1 containers in
similar to the gestation chambers on the seocnd floor of the original.

We didn't get round to designing up the terror ship, the medium and small scouts.

I'll do layout drawings of what I mean and post it up here. For playtesting he suggested using a tabletop wargaming ruleset. Something like Spacehulk would work but any rulesystem would work for testing the tactical layouts of the designs. If the designs were done on graph paper they could be sized up and transferred to the tabletop for testing.

Done this way, once we have floor plans for the UFO's we could playtest them until we have battlescape ready to roll and insert the pre tested designs into the game. It would also let the art team get on with discussing how best to make the UFO's look as there will be designs we can use as a template. If not we'd have to wait till battlescape was up and running before discussing and playtesting the designs.

The other thing he mentioned he'd like is more base defence missions and the way he suggested that is to have the bases fully visible at the start of the game and the little hubcap UFO's flying all over and searching for the bases. That way instead of in an average game defending his base maybe twice at the max, he'd like to be on a constant vigil to defend his bases. This would work better as the game progresses and the player stockpiles weapons and tech. The aliens wouldn't be coming to destroy the base but to recover their tech and elerium. So their tactics would be to hunt the soldiers down and kill them instead of laying waste to the base.

The base would still be there at the end of the alien recovery raids and I think it would get the player in a bit of a state to find all his stores have been stolen away from him. I know I'd fight harder to kill the aliens responsible :)

Anyway my main point is anyone who feels they are tactical genius' step up and present your UFO designs and lets do some playtesting.

This is a good article about level design http://www.gamasutra.../licht_01.shtml

Edited by Deimos, 09 June 2003 - 12:32 AM.


#2 GreatGold

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Posted 09 June 2003 - 12:50 AM

Hey -

Could you give us the general dimensions of each classification of ship. For instance, at what size is a UFO classified as a Medium, as apposed to a large, scout? Can a medium scout have two levels? Or would that be straying from the original too far. Likewise, can certain shiips be species specific? For instance, if the ship is for Floaters, why bother with floors...

Basically, what are the general guidlines that we should abide by when designing the UFO's? How many types can we come up with? Are we just sticking to the original types, with one design in each category. Or could there be a number of varients of each. That would be great fun for researching purposes...it could take you a number of intercepts and recoveries before you've gotten all the possible "Medium Scout" UFO's in service...likewise, you might get a different X-Net entry for each one...

Yeah, so, what are the boundaries we must work within?

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#3 Deimos

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Posted 09 June 2003 - 02:12 AM

Heh, sorry I did leave it a little on the freeform side didn't I.

You make a good point about floater ships. Why would they bother with floors. Though I'm guessing the floors are more for the players benefit than the spirit of the story. Maybe all the alien ships are designed by the overmind, big brain whatever you want to call it and that's why the craft are all of one design.

I'd say the best thing to do here is discuss what options are viable for v1.0 and then go from there. Maybe the best thing to do to start off with is take the original designs as the base size. In the case of the medium scout, put a box around the overall floor size of the + shape and use that. Same goes for all the other types of craft. Stick for now with the same amount of floors as the originals and see what we come up with.

Restrictions. Every craft must have at least one power source room of similar size to the original craft and must make up the centre of the craft. Terror ships mush have two power sources positioned to give the craft maximum acceleration. Supply ships must have three power sources. Battleships must be difficult to capture and have the power supplies in places that will cause trouble for the player.

As ever just because one person has posted a design for one type of craft it doens't mean you can't post your idea as well. The more designs we have the better our options and we can mix and match design elements from each others designs to create the best design for a particular type of ufo. If there are lots of designs for one type of craft we have options for +v1.0.

Once we've got a stock of designs we can think about the more esoteric designs and race specific craft.

What I don't think should be discussed in here is the aesthetic design as we can worry about that in another thread.

#4 GreatGold

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Posted 09 June 2003 - 08:08 AM

Hey -

Just one more quick question. I don't have access to the a working X-Com copy anymore, and off the top of my head I don't remember the box-count dimensions of the UFOs <_< . If someone could just post a list of how large the grid can be for each type, that would be immensely helpful. I'll get started on designs...but the dimensions are vital.

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#5 Guest_blaa_*

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Posted 09 June 2003 - 09:47 AM

Deimos, you're an artist you discribed a visual subject with words and no picture? :blink:

Just teasing, but a quick drawing is a good way to get ideas like this across.

My tupence:

* Some UFOs are discribed as cigar shaped, as the terrorship and supplyship are, so we don't nessessarily have to have something that is symetrical along x & y, or p (rho circular coordinates).

* I'd like to see all the small UFOs (S/M/L scouts) on legs, like those cheesy 50's Hollywood UFO's.

* Tactically for interiors, on the very basic level you have three choices:
1 ) Cramped.
2 ) Spacious.
3 ) Mixed.
We should use all three, as they produce different tactical environments.

* Floor plans shouldn't be completely random to the point where stupidly illogical floorplans arrise. Yet, we do want variety. There are three ways to meet both of these:

1 ) We Logically design many different floor plans and battlescape picks /at random/ which one to use. This should be designed to be open ended so that infinitely more floorplans can be added (and omitted).

2 ) we logically design sections of floorplans and battlescape randomly shoves these together. To create a wide variety of floor plans. These elements themselves must be designed intelligently baring in mind that they will be shoved together at random and we wish to avoid the problem of the stupid illogical floorplan.

3 ) Both.

* It might be fun if each race had there own hulls that they use, just a thought. Also overall (and even by race) we can have several different hulls per mission type.

* For the floorplans, when manually designing full floorplans we can both design from outside-in or inside-out. We might be able to do the same with the floor plan section method but inside-out would be tougher to get reasonable looking hulls though.

#6 GreatGold

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Posted 09 June 2003 - 10:11 AM

Hey -

Yet another question, what are the dimensions of a single box in the battlescape?

On to better things...

1 ) We Logically design many different floor plans and battlescape picks /at random/ which one to use. This should be designed to be open ended so that infinitely more floorplans can be added (and omitted).

2 ) we logically design sections of floorplans and battlescape randomly shoves these together. To create a wide variety of floor plans. These elements themselves must be designed intelligently baring in mind that they will be shoved together at random and we wish to avoid the problem of the stupid illogical floorplan.


I like the first idea, I really do not like the second one. It seems to me that 10 or 20 well thought out, designed, and tested UFO interiors are better than an infinite number of shatty ones. Also, I'm trying to think of whats realistic in terms of manurfacturring...sure we could have the second option, and explain it away as aliens liking "modular designs", but I think most people would see that as a cop-out to good level design.

If we did have multiple designs for each classification of UFO, than I really think each interior should also get a new exterior. Each varient should need to be researched to determine its funciton, etc. Each varient will need a X-Net model.

Which brings me to an interesting thought. In the X-Net, for each UFO type researched, should there then be a "Floorplan" entry? I mean, once you research it, it might as well be added to you research database.

All in all, I like the idea of varient UFO designs. It adds a tactical element that will be exciting. But not every 747 has a different interior design...its just not practical. I think that would hold true to UFOs. Sure, a few designs are great, but only as many as are practical.

Anyhow, let me know what you think. Also, if someone could post those dimensions I'd be most greatful :D .

Gold

EDIT: I found this website, which has a shareware graph-paper making program. I'm gonna play with it when I get home, perhaps if someone gives me the dimensions of each UFO type, I can make a generic graphpaper for it so that people have the correct dimensions on a template to play with.
http://webperso.easy...graphpapeng.htm

Edited by GreatGold, 09 June 2003 - 10:16 AM.

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#7 Breunor

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Posted 09 June 2003 - 10:42 AM

Well, the variations in exterior look is made of two parts IMO. You have the material used, and the style of the design. I would think both would be similar though, since all these UFOs will be coming from a single base on Mars. I would think the aliens are having to manufacture their UFOs on the base, or would they have brought thousands with them from 'far away'?

I think it would fit better to the story (and sounds cooler) that they brought enough stuff with them to manufacter what they'd need. So they'd build the ufos on Mars for use here. It's the same as if we were to colonize Mars. We'd bring what we need to build everything there, using those resources locally available. Even using alien alloys, it's easier to transport huge slabs of alloy than fully assembled ships or even parts.

There's nothing to say that each ship type doesn't have more than one style though, depending on which aliens use it. Mutons and silicoids could have different needs than floaters and cyberdisks, and the different interiors would need a different exterior. So I guess I'm saying we can just make several shells for each UFO, so long as you can still have an idea what it is.

Edited by Breunor, 09 June 2003 - 10:44 AM.


#8 Fred the Goat

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 01:34 PM

I really like the idea of the smallest craft being up on spindly legs. That's one thing I really liked about x-com 1 versus 2. The first one had that very small ship with a single square, an elevator, and four legs. Kitchy, just the way I like it.

And now, to answer Gold's questions before his head explodes - actually, I haven't played x-com 1 in a while, because I loaned the cd to my brother and it disappeared, but I play 2 a lot, so I can give you my estimates on sizes of things from that.

1 Square is a little under 3 feet on each side - enough for a guy to stand comfortably within one square. The battlescape is twisted diagonally, so squares become diamonds. From corner to corner, the screen is 8 diamonds tall and 10 wide. From edge to edge, the screen is 17 diamonds tall going from a top corner to the bottom. As for ships, I forget which ships are which, but going by the scale of the geoscape's radar a "very small" ship is 9 spindly squares in x-com 1 (8 of these are armor/controls) or 16(?) in x-com 2. A small ship is around 6 units square, to 15 square, I think. A medium one is maybe 20 or more units on a side, and maybe 3 stories tall. Large ships are frickin huge, over 25 units to a side, anyway, and 4 stories. Bases cover the whole battlescape, which all told is 60 by 60 in x-com 2, although I had the distinct impression that it was bigger in x-com 1. This was divided into 36 10x10 chunks, and these were thrown together randomly. There were also some battlescape features that were made of 4 of these chunks, and were 20x20. Finally, the Triton is 12x9 including wings, or 12x6 without, taking up barely 2 chunks, and holding 14 guys. I believe the skyranger was the same general size. *gasp* Did I do good? Tell me I did good. :master:

#9 Deimos

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 05:26 PM

Some basic battleship plans.
Colour coding is as follows.
Pink Squares are the ufo lifts. There are two varieties, the ones that are 4 squares and the single access ones.
The pink circles are the ufo power sources. Seeing as this is a battleship they are the larger 4 square variety.
Black lines are walls and the lighter grey single square panels are doorways.
The blue rectangles are something that was never put into the original game, plasma beam launchers.

The + sections on floor 2 are there mainly for the challenge of playing, there'll be no sendign blaster bombs down the corridors as the tracking mechanism won't be able to get between them. The player will be able to get through them by using sheer weight of attack but the'yll waste BB's doing it.

The exterior hull I think should be double or even triple skinned as it was way too easy in the original to punch a hole through and enter from wherever. This is the same battleship that takes at least two Avengers to pummel it to get it to crash, it's shouldn't be so easy to punch a hole through it.

Everything else should be self explanatory (though I've said that before;))

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#10 Deimos

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 05:27 PM

Level 2 The light grey areas on this level represent no floor. Level 1 where the ufo power sources are cover 2 levels so that area is open space. (Perfect hiding spot for those floaters)

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Edited by Deimos, 24 June 2003 - 05:31 PM.


#11 Deimos

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 05:29 PM

Top level. This level used to be on the bottom in the original but it'd be kind of boring if the player knew what was coming for them.

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#12 Micah

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 10:01 PM

A lot of interesting ideas. I think it will be great to have a much larger variety of UFOs, if we accomodate for the different species of aliens. Also, if anyone would like a reference for exactly what the ufo floor plans in UFO Defense looked like, check here:

http://www.xcomufo.com/ufo/

I snapped a bunch of picks and Deimos did a lot of pasting. I'm still working on tracking down a few more craft...

#13 Deimos

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 11:21 AM

The link that Micah put up also will enbale you all to see the sizes of the craft and count the squares to get overall dimensions. Remember 1 square is 1m x 1m x 2.5m

#14 GreatGold

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 11:25 AM

The link that Micah put up also will enbale you all to see the sizes of the craft and count the squares to get overall dimensions. Remember 1 square is 1m x 1m x 2.5m


Thank you!! This is what I've been waiting for...

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#15 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 12:46 PM

Two quick questions:

Are you looking for ufo layout submissions?

Are we going to stay with the 'vaguely saucer-shaped' limit?

Here's a large scout design....

Edit:Implemented Mikker's suggestion
Edit: Added approx. sizes

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#16 mikker

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 03:05 PM

that is one special UFO design!

Is it is there, it would easily fall over, but perhaps with some stebelisators...

an original design!


For the top level, the door that leads out of the lift room should in my opinion be to the south, for harder access to the control room (top priority).

Edited by mikker, 25 June 2003 - 03:07 PM.

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#17 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 04:51 PM

Great...I got inspired when I should be studying.

At any rate, here's a potential Terror ship. I'm thinking about a battle ship varient that just has another (big) level slapped on top.

Edit: Added Sizes. It's just a little on the small side for a terror ship.

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#18 GreatGold

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 08:14 PM

Hey -

I like the first one, but I say drop the stabilizers. Why you ask?! Because it adds a very mysterious element to the craft...

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#19 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 09:09 PM

I actually had a couple reasons to have them in:

1) Similar to original terror ship
2) Need to have some place to stable cyberdiscs/reapers/sectopods
3) 4 ways of getting into main area...each down a choke point
4) multiple ways for aliens to deploy..assuming each pontoon holds 2-3 large aliens (like the original), the aliens can rapid deploy 8-12 large terror units in one round. A dozen sectopods could probably level a small town about 3 minutes. :devillaugh:

On the other hand, all designs are open to suggestions and revisions by anyone who feels like it. Building a great game is more important than my pride. :uhoh:
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#20 Deimos

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Posted 26 June 2003 - 12:07 PM

Are you looking for ufo layout submissions?


Yup. The design for ufo's is going to be based round the tactical side primarily. Aesthics comes in later when we build the model the art team can put a shell on the outside to pretty the interior design up.

Are we going to stay with the 'vaguely saucer-shaped' limit?

If you take the floor sizes of the original craft and use them as a template for the size of the new designs, the layout can be tactically diverse. The outer shell will be ufo like but we may well use not only saucer shapes but also the other reported types of ufo. So Triangles, saucers, cigars and all the other design stlyes will be considered.

The primary concern is how it plays. The aesthetic can come later.
Things to consider when designing layouts is, how hard is it to assault? We want it tough but not impossible. Lots of corners and some choke points in proper areas. Don't overdo the choke points there should be one or two at a maximum The choke point should be in the right area for the ship.

How much fun is involved with the design? Are there areas where the player can set up ambushes and/or use choke points to their advantage? Is the player going to enjoy assaulting the ship? Not just one assault remember that an average of 200-300 ships throughout a game. Going on averages (and discounting the small scout/trashcan lid) there are 6 types of craft which means each craft will get shot down 50 times.

There must be mulitple ways to assault the ship to stop players getting bored, even if we have one ufo for each race type that's still 10 per race, per ship type. Those aren't strict figures, just estimates.

I like the terror ship, that would be hard to cover all the doors while assaulting the ship. Nice one Cpt. Boxershorts. ^_^

#21 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 26 June 2003 - 01:49 PM

For anyone else out there looking to compare sizes :huh?: , here's the areas of the ships in Micah's link. Consider all of these as approximates. (yes, I have too much free time today).


Vessel:Floor Area/Cubic

Small Scout: 49m^2/122.5m^3

Large Scout: 129m^2/322.5m^3

Supply (Top Level): 211m^2/527.5m^3
Supply (Mid Level): 324m^2/810m^3
Supply (Ground Level) :211m^2/527.5m^3
Supply Total: 746m^2/1865m^3

Terror (Top Level): 177m^2/442.5m^3
Terror (Ground Level): 261m^2/652.5m^3
Terror Total: 438m^2/1095m^3

Battleship (Top Level): 527m^2/1317.5m^3
Battleship (Mid Level): 527m^2/1317.5m^3
Battleship (Ground Level): 133m^2/332.5m^3
Battleship Total: 1187m^2/2967.5m^3
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#22 Breunor

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Posted 26 June 2003 - 02:22 PM

I also like the captain's terror ship design, specifically the multiple exits. Hard to assault! The other design can work as well, just make the lower level more of a diamond shape for landing stability. I think the control room position is fine, not every design has to have the hardest possible layout.

May I suggest that for the terror ship, you could have a staging area between the 4 deployment areas and the main floor. You currently have the 4 tubes connecting them, instead have those tubes connect to 1 room that wraps around the control room on the second floor. That room only has 1 elevator going into the main ufo hull, creating the main choke point. I suggest using the south entry, surrounded by the small room. Take the room out so that a soldier coming down is exposed to fire from either side. hehehe! :devillaugh:

#23 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 26 June 2003 - 02:45 PM

Terror ship with Bruenor's suggestion.

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#24 Micah

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 02:11 AM

Based upon the captain's figures and with some free time, I've redesigned the UFO floor plans page:

http://www.xcomufo.com/ufo/

#25 mikker

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 05:23 AM

hmmm.....veery streight out design after the entrence....i suggest that you make some more doors, for tactics.

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#26 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 12:47 PM

How about this?

Edit: Wrong Image. :D

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#27 mikker

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 02:46 PM

i mean, more connections between rutes.

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#28 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 27 June 2003 - 03:19 PM

I get you. Damn, that would suck having to hunt a bug through that. :alienlol:
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#29 Cpt. Boxershorts

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 04:32 PM

Two Quick questions:

Are the UFO designs going to be limited like the original in terms of angles? Since we're doing away with the tiles, are curves allowed?

Also, are the UFO lifts just lifts (ie: linear vertical travel) or are they teleporters?

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#30 Breunor

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 09:22 PM

Very nice ufo layout pages Micah!

Captain, those look sweet! That was just what I envisioned. As to angles being used, you should be able to use any angle you like in design. The main considerations are that there's at least a 40" clearance in any area that a unit must walk through (imagine 10 inch openings, just big enough to shot through!), and the more curves there are the more polys that are used. If we don't have the terror ship at a terror site, it can be BIG, but if it's at the site (which makes more sense), then the limit is much lower.

#31 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 20 September 2003 - 03:05 PM

Hey

Not to distrupt the design process, but these are the kind of designs I am thinking of for a new style of UFO completly. I am trying to design them with both aestecics and tactical edge in mind, in fact IMO they ended up far more towards the tactical side of things which should be cool. This is a design I was theorising about for the Large Scout:

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#32 Extralucas

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Posted 20 September 2003 - 07:18 PM

Those are great designs, but they seem to be tactical h*ll (I still don't understand why is this word censored). So many chokepoints, rooms designed only to trap human soldiers... Is this going to be a flying fortress? :wacko: Maybe you should give some chances for assaulters to win the battle? It is just hard for me to imagine conquering those ships, without help of blaster bombs, and in early stages of game there aren't many of them...

I wouldn't like to see random ships too. They should manfactured according to some pattern. Making every of them is confusing for player.
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#33 Deimos

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Posted 20 September 2003 - 07:40 PM

This is why I said earlier in the thread we should playtest the submitted designs to death before we consider them for inclusion in the game.

All of the plans can be printed out and played on with whatever tabletop skirmish game takes your fancy. The rules system doesn't matter that much at this stage. What matters is, is it challenging for the human player whilst retaining the element of "I want another go" in it. Making it a fortress that's impossible or very difficult to assault is just going to have players walking away.

I hate having to repeat myself over and over but the attraction of the first game was that the player wanted to keep coming back for more. Please please if you are submitting designs, read what's already been said, discussed and decided upon. Thanks.

#34 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 20 September 2003 - 08:29 PM

Very true, replayability should be key. I never thought of giving it a try on the paper, I will have a try with the standard amounts of units to see if it is going to be tiresome or not. IIRC it took 5 turns to clear every room with two groups of peeps on the Large Scout, so maybe when doing designs we should not necessarily stick strictly to the size but worry about how long it takes to clear the whole ship, assuming there are no aliens in it. Battles don't count because they are the entertaining parts whereas walking round isn't particualy fun.

#35 fux0r666

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Posted 20 September 2003 - 09:47 PM

Does anyone know of a set of (miniature strategy game/boardgame) rules that allows you to shoot and move in the same phase?

Here I go an angry brother gonna make his move
But can I buck him in the city so I never lose?
See I'm a get him in the crowd with a couple heavies
And lay the barrel to the ground, hold the gat steady
And now I'm ready for my adversary, talk is cheap
I'm looking for a way to make a plan gonna keep it neat
So don't be telling me to get the non-violent spirit
'cause when I'm violent is the only time the devils hear it
'cause all I want to see is m****f***ing brains hanging


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#36 Deimos

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Posted 20 September 2003 - 10:32 PM

If you're buying, Stargrunt by Ground Zero games would work really well. They're a really small company and they work hard for their customers.

With a little modification the ruleset would almost fit in for xcom.

Having said that I'll have a look through my archives and see if I can find my tabletop conversion of the battlescape system. I know I put it safe, but where is the question :)

There are loads of free rulesets on the net. Google brought up some v.good ones in the first few hits
http://www.totalmode...kshop_227.shtml
http://freespace.vir...dern/modern.htm

http://www.dp9.com/F...use/HG_Demo.htm (brilliant game, even better company. I have most of their books and have some of my work on their site)

I bet there's loads of pics available for printing to use as miniatures so really the only thing you'd need would be lots of dice.

#37 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 07:59 AM

I wonder...Do you think X-Com was based off of any particular tabletop game? Or just adapted for their own needs?

#38 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 11:52 AM

Hey there, I did as you suggested and basically laid it in front of me to try it out. I didn't include any aliens because I thought knowing how many turns it would take to clear an empty UFO would be useful, these are the turns that are the most boring but they would be broken up by battles. This is the conclusion I came to for my design.

In total to clear the whole UFO with 2 teams would take 5 turns with a completly empty UFO. I think that there may be too many oppotunities for the bugs to escape as to stop this currently would require 4-5 teams, some performing holding duties, but I think a major battle in the centre of the UFO where the troops would enter is a distinct possibility with the bugs having the advantage of pulling out into the other rooms should things get hairy. Because of the limitations of the airlocks either side of the UFO only one troop could enter at a time but with the possibility of a two pronged attack.

What do others think based upon this? A start but with adjustments could be better? Too hard? Too easy? I think it could be very interesting tactically with some adjustments but others input would be welcome.

#39 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 12:16 PM

Hmm, It might not be fun if as soon as your guy enters a door you hear a zap and your guy falls over dead. What I guess im saying here is that choke points should be kept to a minimum imo because they are damn near impossible to clear w/o bbs or sacrificing a great many guys. :(
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#40 fux0r666

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 12:23 PM

That would provide a tactical challenge. It would also depend on the state of mind of the aliens. I think they use up most of their TU's when they are close to panicking. It would force the use of smoke grenades and explosive and smart, controlled troop movements.

I don't think that tactical challenge would necessarily be a bad thing.

Here I go an angry brother gonna make his move
But can I buck him in the city so I never lose?
See I'm a get him in the crowd with a couple heavies
And lay the barrel to the ground, hold the gat steady
And now I'm ready for my adversary, talk is cheap
I'm looking for a way to make a plan gonna keep it neat
So don't be telling me to get the non-violent spirit
'cause when I'm violent is the only time the devils hear it
'cause all I want to see is m****f***ing brains hanging


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#41 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 12:24 PM

It would also require more special forces type mauvers, using flashbangs, clearing rooms etc.

#42 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 12:40 PM

More tactical challenge is not a bad thing. Too much tactical challenge is. If your guys are killed as soon as they open a door, then the game starts to lose its fun.
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#43 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 12:53 PM

Absolutly, which is why I wasn't keen on just having one entrance. Yeah, there will be a major battle in the middle and the aliens have the advantage of dropping back into rooms and doing some dirty gorrila style tactics against u like popping out a door as u walk past to blast u in the back but giving the advantage of a two pronged attack is absolutly necessary, so you can get twice the amount of troops into position, therefore making the annoying bottle neck go away.

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 01:12 PM

P&P is great for prototyping up to a point. to prove the viability of the idea. or to test a human vs human version. but so much of this depends on the final state of the AI and how the non grid movement stats affect the tactical balance.

Final arrangement of ufo doors and rooms will probably change during playtesting as we balance things out. It would be premature to try to fix things too much at this stage. We will just end up running round in circles getting lost in detail.

However I think we should agree to Jim's idea of radial rooms, for a number of reasons

1) I've not seen anything like it anywhere else as far as I can remember.
2) It fits with the block wall system, albeit using rotations rather than translations
3) It's flexible enough to be adaptable to change strategic difficulty
4) It'll look cool.
5) It means we can aim at the "traditional" circular ufo. Which the original did, but failed because of the limits of the block system.
6) It will fit with the ufo hull design we have elsewhere - Not that this is incredibly important, but still...

#45 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 01:33 PM

You are right about the doors, tho some things need to be decided according to the plan, like the air lock, but even that's no biggie to change.

Just for the record, I can't take all the credit, or indeed blame :LOL:, for the design, it was hammered out between me and Fux.

#46 fux0r666

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 01:42 PM

Cpl: What are you worried about? You play the game on easy.
edit: or was that dipstick?

Jim: Thanks for the props. I was very near tears.

I came up with the concentric ring idea when I was doing my golden donut interior and Jim had the brilliant stroke of genius to combine other donuts like rippling water.

I'm sure that that ----------- (Jim) is getting all the hoo-hah because he knows 3d and I don't.

EDIT BY RK: Use proper language on work forums...

Edited by red knight, 21 September 2003 - 06:22 PM.


Here I go an angry brother gonna make his move
But can I buck him in the city so I never lose?
See I'm a get him in the crowd with a couple heavies
And lay the barrel to the ground, hold the gat steady
And now I'm ready for my adversary, talk is cheap
I'm looking for a way to make a plan gonna keep it neat
So don't be telling me to get the non-violent spirit
'cause when I'm violent is the only time the devils hear it
'cause all I want to see is m****f***ing brains hanging


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#47 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 02:30 PM

Cpl:  What are you worried about?  You play the game on easy.
edit:  or was that dipstick?

That would be dippy. I perfer veteran. With an occassional superhuman when im feeling masochistic. :)

Hmm, im happy as long as there is not a single bottleneck that the aliens (later human players) could exploit. Something like the arrangement in the large scout would be good. The two doors that lead to the nav/power room, preventing cheap bugs from camping at a single door.
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#48 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 04:12 PM

Let's forget the doors for the moment and concentrate on the design. What do you think of the actual design of the large scout, good? Bad?

#49 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 07:32 PM

I like it. It looks like an actual ufo. Nice and round, not square or [-0-] shaped.
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#50 Guest_drewid_*

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Posted 21 September 2003 - 11:17 PM

Cpl:  What are you worried about?  You play the game on easy.
edit:  or was that dipstick?

Jim:  Thanks for the props.  I was very near tears.

I came up with the concentric ring idea when I was doing my golden donut interior and Jim had the brilliant stroke of genius to combine other donuts like rippling water.

I'm sure that that ----------- (Jim) is getting all the hoo-hah because he knows 3d and I don't.

EDIT BY RK: Use proper language on work forums...

Sorry for missing your credit Fux. I credited Jim cos his was the name against the first floorplan I saw on the thread. - my bad.

The best ideas usually happen in the spaces between people, which is part of the reason working in a team is so cool.

At least you've not had you name missed off a credit after working on a game full-time for months. (been there done that)
:crying: