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More Scientists To Start, Tougher Laser Tech


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#1 Robo Dojo 58

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 08:48 AM

If you start with 10 scientists, you can double, or triple them very easily. Laser tech, which normally might take 3 weeks to research, can be done in one week, with minimal investment. You would only need rifles for two or three missions, then you could throw them away.

But, if you start with more scientists, and make laser tech tougher, it'll be much harder to speed it up. 20 scientists to start with could research lasers in 3 weeks still, but it'd be much tougher to tighten the schedule. You'd need extra living space, 100% more scientist$, and the labs would max out.

You'll still be using your weak rifles for another couple of missions, so you won't be able to throw them away so quickly.
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My first order of business: Homeless people make cheap rookies, and are great at opening UFO doors. Heck, they're so cheap, I'm going to replace all personel with them!
Secondly: This organisation takes too much money to run. Weapon shipments will come from Siberia from now on. Costly maintenance is to be cut on all facilities. That includes venting.
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#2 Deimos

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 10:23 AM

The trouble with messing with one item in the research tree is that everything else gets thrown out.

Think about the people that don't research laser tech. They'd have a huge advantage with the extra scientists.

How about instead of changing one aspect, add in extra research trees.

IE Before laser tech is allowed to show up an advanced projectile item is made available. Weight for weight petrol (gasoline) is far more explosive than Black powder, so new weapons could be made to utilise advances in projectile rounds.

Then make laser tech available which would result in the lasers we all know and love. After researching and manufacturing at least one type of laser weapon an Advnaced laser tech research tree could be made available. Seeing as lasers don't have a 'bullet' count the advanced lasers could have along with a higher ROF or damage, range and so on.

Why stop there. Going up the scale advanced plasma weapons could use shaped rounds to maximise damage against different targets. Plasma shotguns anyone?

Other weapons research could include new uses/ammo types for other weapons. How about airburst shrapnel blaster bombs or airborne plasma flares.

I'd also like to see unresearchable and unmanufacturable stuff that only the aliens can take advantage of. Maybe biotech based stuff that uses living organisms as ammuntion. How about spawn (chrissalid) rounds that seep through the target's armour. (Perfect for those pesky flight suits). Or how about acid rounds that melt the targets armour. (Go on use those expensive power armour suits).

#3 Robo Dojo 58

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 12:24 PM

5 or 10 extra scientists will won't make much difference in the whole game, when you can usually have at least a hundred going at once.

All those extra ideas are nifty, Deimos, but shouldn't you post them in your own thread? :huh?: BTW, black powder is never used in guns anymore. Smokeless powder is much better, doesn't clog the barrel, and hits harder.

Well, I was thinking that the starting techs are pretty easy to get. It's also very easy to triple your research ability from the get-go. This seems to give you a big advantage on researching any early topics. You can literally ditch human rifles by the second or third mission. (laser pistols at day 9, anyone?)

Anyways, I posted this topic because someone wanted to make rifles stick around a little longer.
Posted Image Haha! I'm now the Supreme Commander of X-COM. Time to kiss Earth goodbye.

My first order of business: Homeless people make cheap rookies, and are great at opening UFO doors. Heck, they're so cheap, I'm going to replace all personel with them!
Secondly: This organisation takes too much money to run. Weapon shipments will come from Siberia from now on. Costly maintenance is to be cut on all facilities. That includes venting.
Thirdly: We have a new colonel. His name is Facehugger, he loves aliens, and I want you all to treat him with respect.
Lastly: I'll be in my condo on an undisclosed island, if you need me. Good day.

FMIX-The General Stores

#4 Breunor

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 12:51 PM

An easier option would be to reduce the cash a player has, so they can't buy those scientists up front. Or say you don't start with any, so not only do you pay the cost for the first 10 as well, but you have to wait a couple days until they arrive. That helps extend the time frame as well.

#5 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 01:45 PM

Do we need to make lasers harder to get at all? Why not add a research line that adds improved bullets for the rifles?
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#6 dipstick

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 02:33 PM

Why not make laser a prequesite (sp) for plasma? That would solve it all. For example, to research plasma rifle you need laser pistol, laser rifle, AND plasma pistol +ammo. Sorted.
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#7 j'ordos

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 04:29 PM

Ehr, not really. Your suggestion, Dippy, helps increase the time before you can field plasma weaponry, but lasers aren't going to arrive any later that way :)
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#8 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 05:16 PM

I don't really want lasers to arrive later. We should make a new ammo type/alien type that makes the rifle good again.
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#9 Robo Dojo 58

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 06:01 PM

We should make a new ammo type/alien type that makes the rifle good again.


Like, a Xenium based HiEx bullet? I'd want some of that for the heavy or autocannon. :D

Or, Xenium HEAT armor piercing bullets? They'd have far more penetrating power than anything we've got.

Maybe you shouldn't be able to research the laser rifle until you encounter your first UFO. (standard rifles are no good) And you won't be able to research the Heavy laser until you fight your first terror unit. (need a bigger gun) That'd slow down research somewhat, but not for very long.
Posted Image Haha! I'm now the Supreme Commander of X-COM. Time to kiss Earth goodbye.

My first order of business: Homeless people make cheap rookies, and are great at opening UFO doors. Heck, they're so cheap, I'm going to replace all personel with them!
Secondly: This organisation takes too much money to run. Weapon shipments will come from Siberia from now on. Costly maintenance is to be cut on all facilities. That includes venting.
Thirdly: We have a new colonel. His name is Facehugger, he loves aliens, and I want you all to treat him with respect.
Lastly: I'll be in my condo on an undisclosed island, if you need me. Good day.

FMIX-The General Stores

#10 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 16 March 2004 - 07:55 PM

No. I think people would realize that we need better weapons if we are going to fight aliens. Besides, I subscribe to the "There is no overkill" line of thinking. So why would I need to see a raptor just to research a heavy laser?
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#11 Pheonix

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Posted 06 November 2004 - 07:00 AM

I do have an opinion apun lasers and weapons.

In X-Com, the "Best weapon" Is the Heavy plasma, which has great power, aiming, and a sizeable Magazine.

At first, I didn't mind that concept, but later I started to think that every weapon should have their place in the sun. (note: Do not to leave your weapons in the sun, they may get damaged)

My idea would be to First be able to Research lasers.... All the way up to the Plasma defence, Just as usual...

But AFTER that, all the new technology the scientists know will spark and then you'll be able to allocate research: Better Earth guns. Making all earth guns lighter, more powerful, Etc. Then after that, research Better Laser Technology, and Finally end up with Fusion-powered weapons. (Not just Blaster launcher)

An idea of a better "Rifle" would be "Anti-tank rifle" Which would penetrate through materials to hit the target.... Anyone remember Tremors 2?


To go off-scale for a moment, I think alien races should be vunerable to certain types of weapons. Just like sectopods and lasers... But All/almost all.

#12 Tsereve

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Posted 06 November 2004 - 02:23 PM

Personally, I don't think lasers and plasma tech should have anything connection in the research tree. With lasers, you're ovepaid geniuses are coming up with a new idea--plasmas just involve finding something, figuring out how it works, figuring out how to make it.
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#13 Snakeman

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Posted 07 November 2004 - 01:09 AM

My idea would be to First be able to Research lasers.... All the way up to the Plasma defence, Just as usual...

But AFTER that, all the new technology the scientists know will spark and then you'll be able to allocate research: Better Earth guns. Making all earth guns lighter, more powerful, Etc. Then after that, research Better Laser Technology, and Finally end up with Fusion-powered weapons. (Not just Blaster launcher)


This was one thought on research I share. I was a bit disappointed with regard to managing money in X-COM, how fast one could ditch their scientists. Sure, you could keep them around longer I suppose simply by boosting research times, but I like the notion that there's something for them to discover after the main tools for the war were found post Plasma/Fusion stuff. Enhancements or additions to Earth based weapons or even a coupla hybrid concepts.

For some things, you might not necessarily be coming up with a new weapon or ammo type (though who wouldn't want that heh), but maybe in some cases its a matter of a minituration technique (they've learned to make a process better) or something that only decreases weight restrictions a bit with not too terrible a loss of performance?

Just one example I'd been tooling around with in another discussion was in the revitalizing firearms thread. In that discussion one item I would have wanted to see enhanced a bit was the Small Launcher and would I feel be a great example of a hybrid technology bridging the alien delivery device with Earth explosive projectle know how quite nicely (not to mention its a good example of adapting the stun round in discovering and implimenting a minituration process for your own rounds). In addition, its placement in the research tree would have to be late game (but this is debatable based on when one might be pretty much through with alien interrogations - when your pretty much done trying to stun for capture.

This wouldn't negate the fun you could still have with stun bombs mind you, but introduce the chance to include the common 3 Earth projectile type variants for the Launcher: Armor Piercing, Incendiary, & High Explosive. Performance wise I wouldn't expect them to be that much different from the Heavy or Autocannon in terms of results, but overall destructive power of the rounds could fall somewhere inbetween if not slightly below the earlier larger rounds. i.e Main trade off would be weight and ammo size since each round would take up one grid square in inventory rather than two grids plus for older weapon ammo. What's more, the Small Launcher could be the only delivery device to boot that could utilize 4 ammo types in total - 1 alien round, 3 Earth rounds.

Weapon range/accuracy/reactions might need tweaking, but since its a one-shot-at-a-time weapon and its not using multi-round "clips" like other guns, you could simply adjust the time unit amount it takes for loading it, not unlike with the Blaster Launcher round. Most times, even with a soldier with high TUs, your lucky to get one shot then reload in one turn (or the reloading has to happen following turn).

The overall point though getting back on topic is: A reason to hold onto scientists a bit longer or for late game discoveries. Not to mention reinvigorating one of its weapons :)

Perhaps the late stage tech tree (assuming plasma tech is the last main thing on it) could simply branch out in three main categories: Human only advances (new stuff/tweaks to old stuff), alien only advances (more new stuff/tweaks to old alien stuff), and finally hybrids (a mix of old and new stuff between the two cultures & more tweaks if any - the whole revitalizing firearms area).

I supose that in the end, the releavance of keeping scientists around longer would depend a bit on the other various difficulty levels in the game. If the player can go toe to toe with the AI with the main tools on earlier levels, then perhaps only open up this expanded tech tree on the higher difficulty levels.

#14 GARAK

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Posted 31 May 2005 - 05:58 PM

I agree wholeheartedly with the premise of this thread. It's too easy and quick to get laser tech. The player should feel threatened and under a lot of pressure to get some better technology. In other words, having trouble beating the aliens with human tech. I like using the rifles. I like the first 2 monthes of play more than august on. I think it should take longer for scientists to research it.

Another possibility is that the xcorp base doesn't come with a labratory. That way you would have to wait a while to research anything. Just a thought.

#15 Snakeman

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Posted 31 May 2005 - 08:31 PM

Interesting point Garak about starting out without a Lab to further delay discoveries.

Connecting with this concept a bit, it might be fun too to choose the kind of base you start with - what you'd want to include or exclude at game start, to extend the concept of customizing a player's personal level of challenge. Despite whichever difficulty level they selected.

#16 mikker

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 03:11 AM

Just make it take a bit longer to make and research. And maybe you would need to carry a prototype of the weapon into combat, like i think has been proposed before? This way, the pistol would HAVE to see action, before you can continue research (it would be halved both times), and only THEN will you get the X-net entry, and only THEN can you truely manufacture it.

Oh, and you must not lose the prototype (AKA, running away leaving it behind), or else they would have to make an entire new prototype for you again! So instead of, say, 200+200 man hours, total research time would be 200+200+200 man hours! Heh!

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#17 T-1

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Posted 02 June 2005 - 08:48 AM

I really don't understand why we should make lasers better or longer to research. I think that the other guns talked about in "Revitalizing Firearms" and similar threads should be implemented, especially the piercerguns. If you had piercerguns, Heavy Plasma would be a joke. But then the aliens start copying your piercergun hybrid tech... d'oh!