Sunday, February 24, 2013

Scrin, NOD, and the UC oh my!

Recently I've been contacted by a very helpful person on the xenoforce reborn moddb page about balancing issues with the O3 mod.  I say very helpful because unlike the normal "this sucks" or "I like my army better this way" he had a lot of very helpful and useful criticism about problems with the balancing of the O3.  The funny part is Doug and I had already been talking about what this person brought up and we were already planning on making some changes.  It was just helpful because he helped validate the issues we were noticing.

For example, the Scrin planetary Ion Storm ability doesn't really do much against NOD because it can't detect stealth.  This makes it super-powerful against GDI and a non-starter against NOD!  Worse, it's something we simply overlooked and had not noticed, so I say thank you for that!

Now that the UC is shaping up to be almost done we plan on going back in and changing the O3 just slightly, this is NOT a "Re-do" again of the o3 though.  These are simply balaincing and bugs that need fixed, or units that need re-designing.  An example of a unit needing redesigning would be the NOD Salamander.  While some people love the Salamander model Doug apsolutly despises it.  Myself I'm in the "whatever, it doesn't do anything to me or for me" column, I just don't care about the model.  However Doug has recently gotten his hands on some cool looking models that we plan on using for NOD to help show that their end game units are heavily influenced by Alien Technology.  In short NOD is the exact opposite of the Robotech Defense Force. What I mean by this is that the SDF1's memory matrix helps guide humans in the Robotech story, applying advance technological ideas to our existing level of comprehension the Legion Memory Matrix dose the opposite.  It steadily advances NOD's understanding of technology to the point that the end result of what is being built isn't really understood, it just works that way.  The Avatar already has that look upon it, where it's not what GDI was doing with mech technology at all and the only thing that it even resembles in the CNC universe is the Core Defender, and even then the Core Defender wasn't the most human of designs as it was built by CABAL.

What does this have to do with the Salamander and Medusa?  Legion is a Memory Matrix without a Battlefortress to live in.  The solution that Legion comes up with is the Medusa, or a new Battlefortress.  It's alien in design but built with human materials.  The new model for the Salamander and Medusa are like the Avatar, they are very evil and ominous looking.  The Salamander's design is going to change, becoming a unit that is like a Mini-Medusa.  Smaller, faster, and designed to get in close and deal damage to ships like the Kodiak and the Scrin Capitol ships, the Medusa is going to be very valuable to NOD.  The Medusa on the other hand is going to still be that massive ship that is flying though the air (though smaller than what it is right now) that is a simple powerhouse, it's a freaking battle fortress and it needs to fill the roll of Armored Carrier and Heavy Battleship in a very simple and streamlined fashion.

This brings us back to the Scrin.  The current designs for their Capitol Ships will be gaining a bit of a boost in terms of functionality.  The Harbinger for example I'm looking at being a more valuable form of defensive platform.  Scrins problem is they just don't have much of a defensive network.  We're going to be fixing this with a few changes, but what I would say to people is if you want a defense line build Harbingers.  Place them around your base like you would defense turrets.  Then turn on their Ion Storm ability.  With enough of them you can have yourself a wall of very powerful turrets that take out anything that comes near.  If I can pull it off I plan on the Harbinger to still be able to launch it's fighters while in this mode though.  THAT will make them even more powerful in a defensive line, having carriers launching fighters from a far distance that repair that also can shut down and destroy enemy units that get near..... a simple frontal assault will not work against a force like that.  If I was playing as UC and I saw my enemy doing that for their defense I'd switch quickly over to GP03 and start pumping out GM Snipers.  Get in close, hit the ship hard from a distance while stealthed to open a hole, then fly in with GP03 and start making their lives miserable.  Of course the counter to GP03 will be to have an Eye-Of-The-Storm or 2 there for backup, but thats what Super Gundams and GM-III's are for.

The point is we're still working on things and making sure that whatever we do there IS a counter to that side that just seems impossible to beat.  You may just have to think a few steps further than your used to.  Back to my GP03 example I'm sure a lot of people who see that kind of force would build GP03 (or GP02 and go with the Nuke.  Always a great place for a direct firing nuke) would also go with Hi-Nu Gundam.  Myself I'd go with RX-178-0 and not Hi-Nu.  Hi-Nu is a very powerful unit, but I'd rather have a production boost and try to mass-produce as many heavy hitting and fast units like Stark Jegans, Super Gundams, and Powered GM's as I could if I was fighting a fleet of Scrin Capitol Ships.  I'd use Hi-Nu gundam for dealing with GDI and their massive ground force.

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