Sunday, October 21, 2012

20 Days - No Update - But worth it!

So yea, I kind of sorta have not done an update in 20 days.  Damn me.  What in the world have I been doing for the last 20 days that is excusable enough to NOT have done 3 Sunday Updates like I've supposed to have done?


Yea, thats right.  Xenoforce Original 3 V2 Release candidate 2 people!  Now with twice the awesome as before!

OK maybe not twice the awesome, but pretty damn close.

What we have here are quite a few changes.  A lot of these changes have happened on the NOD end of things, but the Scrin have seen some cool updates done as well.  And GDI hasn't been forgotten either, anyone thats been following the MOD DB page knows I kinda sorta broke the GDI AI a few days ago while messing with Nod (HOW THE HELL DOES THAT EVEN HAPPEN?!) so I had to go back and do some work on it.  Now we have a very angry GDI AI that is more than willing to show you where it feels you should stand, which is in the corner cut off from all of your expansion bases because GDI has taken them over.

Seriously though, we have a new GDI AI in this release.  For the real release I plan on doing more GDI AI coding to try and really give that "OMG Why does Azuza hate us so" level of pain.  Personally its because I have recently gotten pissed at people who don't listen when I say I code for Hard AI's and not Brutal AI's and then say they are leet because they can defeat our Brutal AI. Payback is all I'm saying.

Scrin have had some changes done as well.  Prices have been slightly modified on their BioArmors to make it more fair / in line to what it should have been.  Shields have had a major overhaul, now the Scrin Shields take damage as well as allowing some damage to seep through.  So they work like this, say you have a cannon that deals 1000 points of damage for arguments sake.  Before all Scrin Shields were set to half the number of the HP of the unit.  So you have a Bioarmor that has 5000 hp and 2500 shields.  The Bioarmor only took 70% damage from cannons, meaning that it actually only takes 700 pts of damage on getting hit.  BUT first the shield would take 100% of the damage so it would work like this.

If ShieldHP > 0 then ShieldNewHP = ShieldHP - CannonDamage
If Shield HP =<0 -="-" 30="30" annon="annon" damage="damage" p="p" scrinnewhp="ScrinHP" then="then">

if the shields still have power then 1500 = 2500 - 1000
when the shields are down then 4300 = 5000 - (1000 - 300)

Thats not what we wanted.  Now the shields only protect against a portion of the damage BUT they also have resistance to that portion as well.  SO now the math is like this.

If Shields still have power then Passthroughdamage = CannonDamage - ShieldProtection%
Then ScrinHP = Passthroughdamage - ScrinArmor%

If shields have no power then the equation is simply ScrinHP = CannonDamage - ScrinArmor%

or in plain terms

if shields still have power then Passthroughdamage = 1000 - 50% or 500 pts of damage.
Then the ScrinHP = 500 - 30% or 350 pts of damage.

In the old system this means that the scrin would take 3 hits at 1000 each and then the shield would be down, with 350 of the 3rd shot hitting the scrin unit.  Then it would take 7 shots at 700 each to finish the unit with an overkill number of 250 points.

So now using the NEW system the scrin will take 350 pts of damage 5 times, then the shield (which has absorbed 2500 pts of damage) would run out of power and the Scrin would continue to take 700 pts of damage.  This means the Scrin unit can take 9 hits from the cannon before it's dead with an overkill of 250.  Interesting how the math works right?  You would think this means that the new system is worse for the Scrin than the old one was, but I disagree.  This new system is quite interesting because not all damage types would reduce the passthroughdamage by 50%.  Lance weapons which the Scrin use for example would have a 100% reduction rate, in fact Scrin Lance tech is the reason WHY the Scrin developed shields in the first place, using much the same old system as was in place as before.  Plasma could have a 70% pass through rate.  Rail Tech could have a 1% pass through meaning that 99% go's on to the unit and only 1% is protected against it.  The point is this new system gives us a lot more flex-ability to develop and make other weapon types more useful against the scrin.  Don't believe me?  Try using some Melta weapons on them (upgraded fire tech), not only do they quickly remove Scrin Shields and do decent damage to scrin armored units they also wipe the floor with Scrin Infantry.  Finally, man has found a use for fire! lol.

Scrin Capitol ships have also had a major boost.  They may take forever to show up now but you get a few of those on the field and suddenly the shift of power changes drastically.  And the new Scrin AI doesn't care, they'll have 5 of them being built at once so every few minutes another will show up.  Talk about needing those Kodiaks for backup!

NOD has seen the biggest changes here.  Not only do we have a new unit (The Medusa Memory Matrix Ship) that takes forever and a day to build (totally worth it btw) but you also have a drastic change in the Doctrine System.

The number 1 complaint about the Doctrine System was it was too hard to figure out just what you were getting from your choice.  The original idea was that players would play, test all 4 and see how it changes their units, then from there find the one that fit their play style.  This meant you would have to LEARN how to play with NOD before you would really get good with it.  Yea, that didn't work out so well as even then it was hard to pinpoint what did what better or worse with the Doctrine with many Doctrines overlapping or worse, being redundant.

Now this has changed.  Now each unit will only gain a bonus or change IF you pick that units Doctrine.  This means you can play, see the Sector 9 Buggy and know that picking the Sector 9 Doctrine will give this unit a boost.  But wait, there is more!  You can have all 4 Doctrines now so really its more of a "picking which one you need/want first" and less of a "which one do I want and forsake the rest".

The Medusa is the thing I'm most proud of. Using Robotech ideals with NOD have proven to be quite good in this aspect.  What we have is a structure that you build.  After placing it on the field it gives you a few bonus's (large build radius, small boost to income, can build Salamanders / Avatar Swords / Avatar Shields, large boost to power) but is quite large for what it's doing.  BUT as time go's on it slowly becomes better.  First the Secondary Weapons Systems of the ship come online allowing the unit to defend itself.  Then it's Shield Generators come online.  Finally the ship will take off becoming a flying battle fortress with the firepower to stop an entire enemy army in it's tracks.  Once the ship has taken off you can then start to build another one.  This is at the heart of it the same system we plan to use with the SDF-1 with the Robotech Defense Force.  The one in this release is a bit bigger than the one we will end up using, and we plan on removing the Nuclear Missile Launcher from it because the unit seems to get stuck sometimes as if it's trying to wait so it can fire it's Nuke even though it has to wait another 50 seconds before it can fire again, then it finds itself too close so it can't fire... you get the idea.  Still it's quite a sight to see and even in this messed up state is a very nasty toy to play with, so play responsibly.  :)

We should have the final release done in a week or so, if there are any issues or comments anyone wants to make feel free to let me know.  Otherwise enjoy the RC2 of XF:O3 V2.