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Thoughts On Troop Movement


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#1 The Master Maniac

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Posted 13 September 2004 - 07:39 PM

I'm sure this has already been covered elsewhere, but I'm too pinched for time as of the moment to check--meaning, if I'm just harking on old ideas, please don't hesitate to remove this topic.

My idea is as follows: simply allow soldiers to assume varying forms of movement according to different situations. Bah, I have to be short with this. For example:

Advancement Mode: Standard movement fashion simliar to normal movement in the original X-Com games. Weapons are ready to fire, but lowered down to allow greater freedom of mobility. Potential traits are maintaining ability to move about normally, having average response time as the weapons must be raised to fire, and such. Essentially, this would be familiar with the standard movement we're all used to, with no real extra perks, disadvantages, or other alterations.

Weapons-Ready Mode (e.g. Aggressor Deployment): Method of movement in which the soldier assumes a weapons-ready stance, their guns up and ready to fire. Useful when engaging in close-quarters combat in confined spaces, or urban conflicts, this form of movement allows a soldier to acquire a target quickly and accurately. In this mode, movement is restricted to maintain control of the weapon (think Rainbow Six), and speed must be reduced to keep accurate. Potential gains could be, perhaps, quicker firing speeds (maybe an extra shot or two on average), and more accurate snap shots. Obvious downsides are the inability to run quickly with a weapon up. Basic overview: soldier can fire more quickly and with better effeciency, but this comes at the cost of movement speed.

Rapid Movement Mode: A type of movement that allows a soldier to run (and maybe jump, if that's included) faster and with relative ease, by lowering his weapon. Useful for tactical retreats or falling back to cover. Naturally, getting shots off takes a bit more time, but the tradeoff is that a soldier has has a bigger window of opportunity to get away from danger when overwhelmed. Also, perhaps a unit can hop a railing or low-set fence more easily. Overview: unit trades ability to engage the enemy effeciently for the benefit of having much greater maneuverability. Shots require more time to set up, lest they suffer a substantial decrease in accuracy.

Other positions might be added as you guys see fit, if this is implemented at all--say, defensive mode, etc. My idea is that these formations could be toggled in the same manner as entering/exiting a crouch, as assuming the different modes takes a slight amount of time. Of course, these different movement modes don't change the balance of the game at all (well, the idea is that they shouldn't anyway), but I'm hoping that they can add that extra little tactical bit that the player can utilize whenever he/she sees fit. I know all this sounds really spotty now, but I'm kinda in a rush--I'll be back later to maybe clarify this particular idea if needed.

#2 Paladin

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Posted 14 September 2004 - 07:34 AM

Really interesting ideas, especially the "Run/jump mode" and the "High alert mode".
Then again, it can already be simulated in game.
Standard advancment, just reserve TUs for snapshots, that's about it.
For "Agressive movement", you just need to advance VERY slowly (leaving like, 75% of each soldier'S TUS), and I guarantee you they'll get several snapshots worth of reaction fire, just like the aliens do actually...
And use up all of your TUs is equivalent to running (That's why soldiers will lack energy if they run around all teh time), we'd just need to add jumping...

My point is, it's already there, so I'm not sure that complexifying the interface is worth it in this case... But we DO need jumping... :D
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#3 Snakeman

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Posted 14 September 2004 - 09:36 PM

Well, I'd tend to believe much of the work here would likely be in the form of applying the right animations for a given movement moreso than tweaking or adding more buttons. I think that if your running or walking and you come up to a low obstacle, your guy could hurtle it and expend some TUs (perhaps enough as in croutching or standing from a croutch). Its basically like this already in the first game when traversing a low obstacle with a flying suit, though in those situations I think they expend more to accompish that action.

The only real position option I would have wanted for the first X-COM would have been laying down/crawling, but with the options you mention, they'd probably just have to be extra animations rather than extra shooting options. I'd say just incorporate those into aimed, snapshot or autofire buttons, then if you move while still having one of those options depressed on the menu, those anims kick in as they go.l

I like the idea though certainly from an asethics point of view. Its just fun to see your guys doing different things, or doing the same things but by different means.

Edited by Snakeman, 14 September 2004 - 09:37 PM.


#4 The Master Maniac

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Posted 14 September 2004 - 09:55 PM

Hmm, I never thought about the extra buttons--believe it or not, I've never even used or noticed them before just now. Well, my idea wasn't merely to conserve TUs for certain actions, but to give bonuses and subsequent penalties for them. Say, weapons-ready mode allows for greater accuracy (slightly), and quicker reaction fire, and "high alert mode" (I like the way you said it better) can give a soldier the extra agility needed to clear a hostile firing line before getting pegged. Simply put, such modes could affect how stats are used, such as potentially reducing TU consumption by sacrificing effective weapon control to concentrate on "blitzing" to another area, or boosting the ability to acquire and fire upon a distant target.

Eh, just thought I'd try to contribute something different for a change Thanks for the feedback, guys.

#5 x0563511

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Posted 15 September 2004 - 12:19 AM

I like your origional idea. i play a lot of tactical (clancy) games - the idea of holding the weapon more at-the-ready at a cost of movement speed makes a big difference - you can aim and shoot accuratly MUCH more quickly...

Another possibility: energy/recent movement can affect accuracy. Think of it this way:

Your a troop that had just hiked through a weat feild, up 2 stories, back down, and around the corner, at a good pace. Your accuracy is going to be shaky (fatigue, elevated heart rate) and your alertness is going to be lower also.

EG the turn after you expelled 80% of your TUs moving is going to have impaired accuracy... but the guy that was just standing there is going to have an excellent shooting position, just because he's had his aim set at a piont. He can simply swivel the gun to aim at something without shaking it off to much.


Am i making any sense at all? Sleep is a good thing... maybe i should start doing it.

#6 Snakeman

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Posted 15 September 2004 - 12:44 AM

Eh, just thought I'd try to contribute something different for a change Thanks for the feedback, guys.


I think its one worth thinking about, so no harm done :)

I was just pondering how some of those actions might be best suited to being A - folding into exisiting action buttons, B - which might need one of its own, or C - which ones might simply be animations of the soldier only (the asthetics of their performance if you will).

See, I believe that all three variants will need animations, however 2 of the 3 will need some functionality incorporated along with 'em just going on what's been posited so far.

With the movement that's meant to concerve TUs for evacuating a hot area (like moving around a corner and over a fence as the action), I tend to think of the guy jumping the fence as a kind of tail end "finishing move" that expends that amount needed. For instance, say you had enough TUs, and you directed your man to do that, this part's just a different animation action associated with jumping, so this is probably C in the order. This is also a good example of A though there's no action (unless you could have him shoot randomly behind him as he went). My point here is if its folded into any button, it could be the green one with the ------> (the one that let's you waste all your TUs at once if you wanted). Finishing move might not be accurate though, I suppose you could still do the action and still have some left depending on the distances involved and overall TUs of the soldier of course.

Maybe too, the "firing blindly behind him" thing as he retreated would only have to kick in (the animations/actions) if the game calculated he was X distance from nearest alien and the position had been revealed to you (or roughest estimate).

For others like Weapons Ready Mode, the one that gives you a bit of accuracy while you move....I think whatever accuracy bonus is applied, and because there's got to be a hit to performance (accuracy bonus probably shouldn't be more than kneeling and aiming or even laying down/crawling while aiming), you could still probably fold this action into the aiming button (the animation too of the soldier carrying his weapon higher than most as he walked).

Same could be true of the soldier crawling and trying to aim. When you click the aim button, he crawls slowly, and only far enough to expend the TUs necessary to reserve an aimed shot kinda like in the first game where you walked and had to reserve TUs for the shot. Crawling speed would obviously be slower than walking speed and aiming. (the guy crawling and aiming probably wouldn't need an animation since he probably doesn't get into an aiming position until the end of his move. The walking guy I think just needs an anim carrying his weapon higher as he went)

I do like the connection between whichever button is used affecting the stats that would likely be worked on too. Snap and auto generally affect reaction speed, and aiming is self explainatory. However, some of those actions that also incorporate movement increase strength and/or stamina (prolly already do but still...)

I think if any button should be added besides the crawling ability, perhaps it should be associated with having enough to take a step or three out of harm's way. Or burst run or something. You could combine having that one depressed and keeping that on while performing one of the other readiness/firing modes, so that while at the start he's reserving not only TUs to do whatever move, but at the end of that TU spendage, he's got enough to walk or burst run outta Dodge.

Another possibility: energy/recent movement can affect accuracy.


Hmm, sounds interesting. Dont' see why not, I mean, if your using that green button that let's you expend a great deal of TUs fast to get somewhere, only makes sense that a peformance hit or two could occur the immediate turn following.

Edited by Snakeman, 15 September 2004 - 12:59 AM.


#7 Paladin

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Posted 15 September 2004 - 08:06 AM

Yep, I feel we're reaching an interesting consensus here, in keeping it simple, using the already established interface (and let me tell you that your soldiers WILL react if you move just enough to reserve aimed shots, especially if they have decent reactions)

Nice idea about the accuracy, but it would have to be shown clearly somehow, like a "fatigued" condition...
^_^
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#8 GDD

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Posted 02 June 2005 - 03:04 AM

What about wall hugging?

bit of a pain to step round a corner and be shot,

any of those mirrors on sticks planned?

#9 GARAK

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Posted 02 June 2005 - 02:15 PM

I like wall hugging. Teddy bear hugging too.

Maybe we can hug sectoids?

Edited by GARAK, 02 June 2005 - 02:16 PM.