Endless Space 2

Discuss games not related to Limit Theory.

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Cornflakes_91 » Sat May 13, 2017 11:53 am

0111narwhalz wrote:
JanB1 wrote:The graphics are nice, though!

Yeah, but I think my shaders are borked. Sometimes the red things look like green things, and it never displays purple right. :ghost:


I suspect PEBKAC :ghost:
User avatar
Cornflakes_91
Admiral
 
Posts: 9191
Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2013 1:53 am
Location: Austria

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby JanB1 » Sun May 14, 2017 2:58 am

0111narwhalz wrote:
JanB1 wrote:The graphics are nice, though!

Yeah, but I think my shaders are borked. Sometimes the red things look like green things, and it never displays purple right. :ghost:


:lol:
Might want to reinstall your graphics mod. :D
Automation engineer, lateral thinker, soldier, addicted to music, books and gaming.
Nothing to see here

Flatfingers wrote:23.01.2017: "Show me the smoldering corpse of Perfectionist Josh"
User avatar
JanB1
Rear Admiral
 
Posts: 1259
Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2015 1:14 am
Location: Europe

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Flatfingers » Mon May 15, 2017 7:27 am

Cornflakes_91 wrote:
Flatfingers wrote:Oh, real life is strategic, all right.

It's just not a game.


so now can real time be strategic or does the flow have to be discretised into relatively big chunks for strategy to be possible at all?

because you are currently contradicting yourself :P

I don't think so, as long as you understand that "real-time" in games doesn't mean the same thing as in real life. In virtually no case is it actually going to take six calendar years to play out a simulated "World War 2" game. For games, "real-time" just means that the difference between tactical time (taking action in the game world) and strategic time (thinking about what actions to take) is not simulated. No provision is made -- as the "turn" metaphor does -- to give the player time to think before acting. Result: anytime you're not performing actions that change the state of the game world, you're losing.

Tactical gameplay crowds out strategic gameplay.

A constantly ticking clock (which is what "real-time" in games really means) forces in-game choices to be made Right Now. Even if that clock ticks very slowly, just the idea of a ticking clock creates time pressure (on a human player) that interferes with deep analysis and thoughtful decision-making. This prevents players from taking as much real-world time as as they want to think about patterns and plans -- i.e., to enjoy strategic fun -- before having to commit to those choices with in-game actions.

Making a game "real-time" instead of turn-based interferes with strategic fun. There's nothing inherently wrong with not implementing the taking-turns model; it just supports a different kind of fun than strategic fun. So it's fine if you're not making a strategy game, but counterproductive if you actually are trying to provide strategic fun.

In other words, "real-time strategy" is an oxymoron.



That's probably all I can say about this while I still briefly have an internet connection. :D If you have a substantive argument that advances some coherent alternative viewpoint, I'd be interested in reading it; otherwise, I think we're done here.
User avatar
Flatfingers
Vice Admiral
 
Posts: 4541
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:45 am

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Talvieno » Mon May 15, 2017 7:36 am

I think Cornflakes is pulling your leg, Flatfingers. :P
Image
Have a question? Send me a PM!
User avatar
Talvieno
Community Manager
 
Posts: 8192
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2014 6:50 pm
Location: North GA, USA

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Flatfingers » Mon May 15, 2017 9:30 am

Talvieno wrote:I think Cornflakes is pulling your leg, Flatfingers. :P

I know. The first draft of my response started with the sentence, "Obvious trolling is obvious." :lol:

I expanded on the argument because I had one last thought on it that I wanted to work out for myself. I appreciate everyone's patience with me on this subject.
User avatar
Flatfingers
Vice Admiral
 
Posts: 4541
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:45 am

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Scytale » Mon May 15, 2017 10:45 am

Flatfingers wrote:
Cornflakes_91 wrote:
Flatfingers wrote:Oh, real life is strategic, all right.

It's just not a game.


so now can real time be strategic or does the flow have to be discretised into relatively big chunks for strategy to be possible at all?

because you are currently contradicting yourself :P

I don't think so, as long as you understand that "real-time" in games doesn't mean the same thing as in real life. In virtually no case is it actually going to take six calendar years to play out a simulated "World War 2" game. For games, "real-time" just means that the difference between tactical time (taking action in the game world) and strategic time (thinking about what actions to take) is not simulated. No provision is made -- as the "turn" metaphor does -- to give the player time to think before acting. Result: anytime you're not performing actions that change the state of the game world, you're losing.

Tactical gameplay crowds out strategic gameplay.

A constantly ticking clock (which is what "real-time" in games really means) forces in-game choices to be made Right Now. Even if that clock ticks very slowly, just the idea of a ticking clock creates time pressure (on a human player) that interferes with deep analysis and thoughtful decision-making. This prevents players from taking as much real-world time as as they want to think about patterns and plans -- i.e., to enjoy strategic fun -- before having to commit to those choices with in-game actions.

Making a game "real-time" instead of turn-based interferes with strategic fun. There's nothing inherently wrong with not implementing the taking-turns model; it just supports a different kind of fun than strategic fun. So it's fine if you're not making a strategy game, but counterproductive if you actually are trying to provide strategic fun.

In other words, "real-time strategy" is an oxymoron.



That's probably all I can say about this while I still briefly have an internet connection. :D If you have a substantive argument that advances some coherent alternative viewpoint, I'd be interested in reading it; otherwise, I think we're done here.


Thanks for expanding your thoughts on this, and it is a compelling argument. Does the game being pausable affect this tactics-crowding-out-the-strategy effect? Is it a red herring? Is it a crutch made to make the game seem as amenable to strategic thinking as a TBS, but failing in the effort?
User avatar
Scytale
Vice Admiral
 
Posts: 2826
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:40 pm

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Flatfingers » Mon May 15, 2017 10:25 pm

Depends on how "pause" is implemented.

If it's literally just a pause in all gameplay, and you can't examine the world or queue up orders while time is frozen, then that fails to support strategy gameplay as those are exactly the kinds of things you want players to have lots of world-real-time to do.

Maybe this is implemented simply as a nice feature without thought for how it supports (or doesn't support) gameplay. Or maybe it's deliberately limited (no exploring the state of the gameworld while paused) in order to force the human player to do everything in game-real-time. In this case, I have to conclude that those developers aren't really interested in supporting strategy gameplay regardless of how their game is described.

If OTOH pausing is implemented so that the human player can explore information in the gameworld and queue up strategic commands while all AI players are frozen, that's a nod to supporting strategy play -- definitely more than the other kind of pausing. But a "Pause Everybody Else" button is so close to being a "Next Turn" button that you might as well implement the game as turn-based to start with!

But let's say you, as a game developer, do choose to make the game run at some game-real-time speed until/unless the player hits the Pause Everybody Else button. Just thinking off-the-cuff here, I think that might be tolerable from a "support strategy gameplay" position, depending on how fast the AI players can perform their strategic thinking and tactical actions. It puts enough power in the hands of the human player to think deeply relative to the speed of action inside the gameworld that, even if the AI players are faster than the human player when the game is unpaused, it can always be paused again.

Having said this, I think turn-based is still better for strategy as it helps the game developer keep things fair for all players. Honestly, the whole notion of a "turn" is freaky. It's an abstraction that exists only to support fair play in a game... but it performs this function so extremely well that it's almost always a sound choice when designing games that are meant to offer anything more complex than fast-paced, exciting tactical play.



TL;DR: From a "maximize strategic play" perspective, I could live with a "Pause Everybody But The Human Player" kind of pause button, but not a "Pause All The Things" button. I still think, though, that if you want to make a game that people who enjoy strategic play will find satisfying, just design it to be turn-based from the start. That's a completely reasonable solution to letting the human player have enough time to enjoy doing the deep thinking at the heart of strategic fun.
User avatar
Flatfingers
Vice Admiral
 
Posts: 4541
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:45 am

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Dinosawer » Tue May 16, 2017 12:05 am

...not played any 4X'es, but I somehow had the idea "Pause Everybody But The Human Player" is the normal kind of pause button in a strategy game. Is that not the case?
Warning: do not ask about physics unless you really want to know about physics.
The LT IRC / Alternate link || The REKT Wiki || PUDDING
Image
User avatar
Dinosawer
Admiral
 
Posts: 5821
Joined: Fri May 09, 2014 1:08 pm
Location: Belgium

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Cornflakes_91 » Tue May 16, 2017 12:16 am

Dinosawer wrote:...not played any 4X'es, but I somehow had the idea "Pause Everybody But The Human Player" is the normal kind of pause button in a strategy game. Is that not the case?


it is the normal case.

I dont remember a single strategy/tactics game not supporting full control while paused
User avatar
Cornflakes_91
Admiral
 
Posts: 9191
Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2013 1:53 am
Location: Austria

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Dinosawer » Tue May 16, 2017 12:18 am

In that case, er, ...
what's the problem exactly? :ghost:
Warning: do not ask about physics unless you really want to know about physics.
The LT IRC / Alternate link || The REKT Wiki || PUDDING
Image
User avatar
Dinosawer
Admiral
 
Posts: 5821
Joined: Fri May 09, 2014 1:08 pm
Location: Belgium

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Cornflakes_91 » Tue May 16, 2017 12:29 am

GrumpyFingers wrote:Those damn kids having fun with their continuous games! My fun is the only true fun! *continues to move figurines in closely defined discrete steps*


^the problem

:ghost:
User avatar
Cornflakes_91
Admiral
 
Posts: 9191
Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2013 1:53 am
Location: Austria

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby JanB1 » Tue May 16, 2017 12:41 am

Cornflakes_91 wrote:
Dinosawer wrote:...not played any 4X'es, but I somehow had the idea "Pause Everybody But The Human Player" is the normal kind of pause button in a strategy game. Is that not the case?


it is the normal case.

I dont remember a single strategy/tactics game not supporting full control while paused


In Total War: Rome 2 you can't give orders to your units at slow motion or when the game is paused when you play in "Realistic"-Mode. :D
Automation engineer, lateral thinker, soldier, addicted to music, books and gaming.
Nothing to see here

Flatfingers wrote:23.01.2017: "Show me the smoldering corpse of Perfectionist Josh"
User avatar
JanB1
Rear Admiral
 
Posts: 1259
Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2015 1:14 am
Location: Europe

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Scytale » Tue May 16, 2017 11:21 am

Flatfingers wrote:Depends on how "pause" is implemented.

If it's literally just a pause in all gameplay, and you can't examine the world or queue up orders while time is frozen, then that fails to support strategy gameplay as those are exactly the kinds of things you want players to have lots of world-real-time to do.

Maybe this is implemented simply as a nice feature without thought for how it supports (or doesn't support) gameplay. Or maybe it's deliberately limited (no exploring the state of the gameworld while paused) in order to force the human player to do everything in game-real-time. In this case, I have to conclude that those developers aren't really interested in supporting strategy gameplay regardless of how their game is described.

If OTOH pausing is implemented so that the human player can explore information in the gameworld and queue up strategic commands while all AI players are frozen, that's a nod to supporting strategy play -- definitely more than the other kind of pausing. But a "Pause Everybody Else" button is so close to being a "Next Turn" button that you might as well implement the game as turn-based to start with!

But let's say you, as a game developer, do choose to make the game run at some game-real-time speed until/unless the player hits the Pause Everybody Else button. Just thinking off-the-cuff here, I think that might be tolerable from a "support strategy gameplay" position, depending on how fast the AI players can perform their strategic thinking and tactical actions. It puts enough power in the hands of the human player to think deeply relative to the speed of action inside the gameworld that, even if the AI players are faster than the human player when the game is unpaused, it can always be paused again.

Having said this, I think turn-based is still better for strategy as it helps the game developer keep things fair for all players. Honestly, the whole notion of a "turn" is freaky. It's an abstraction that exists only to support fair play in a game... but it performs this function so extremely well that it's almost always a sound choice when designing games that are meant to offer anything more complex than fast-paced, exciting tactical play.



TL;DR: From a "maximize strategic play" perspective, I could live with a "Pause Everybody But The Human Player" kind of pause button, but not a "Pause All The Things" button. I still think, though, that if you want to make a game that people who enjoy strategic play will find satisfying, just design it to be turn-based from the start. That's a completely reasonable solution to letting the human player have enough time to enjoy doing the deep thinking at the heart of strategic fun.


I agree with the others that the second kind of pause you describe is the norm in most modern RTSes. That's how Paradox does it for their 4x games and how Distant Worlds does it too.

The Paradox games in particular also have adjustable rates: you could adjust game speed by up to a factor of 8, I think. In my opinion, along with the pause, this mechanic helps to ameliorate a problem that a fixed-rate RT and regular turn-based 4x games can't: you are able to adjust the game so that per unit of time invested by the player, the rate of things happening in game is not fixed. In addition, this adds a flexibility to the play experience of the player, so they can choose to deal with events at a rate they like.

In my current multiplayer Stellaris game with a friend, he's hosting and has authority over the time rate thing (I don't insist on a rate). He tends to play at a much slower rate than I do, and he pauses very often. At first I found this frustrating, but as I got used to it I found I was thinking much more strategically than when I play by myself, and enjoying the experience that much more for it. In a way maybe I'm proving your point, Flat, but the reason I'm saying this is to emphasize that I was playing with someone who uses a game mechanic in a different way I do, and it affected how I experienced the game. I think that's amazing. Not only does the game accommodate for different styles of play by this mechanic, but those different styles deliver different experiences. Maybe it's not surprising, but I think it's interesting at least.

(This mechanic doesn't really address the problem you mentioned in another post about late-game micro, other than through delegation through sectors or vassals as in some Paradox games, and I'm not trying to say it does.)

You could argue that in TBS games, you can choose to spend however long or short on a turn as you wish, so it enjoys the same events-per-unit-time-invested governance that an adjustable RT game does. I don't know if I could really argue with that, but I did want to bring this up as a point for certain RT-games. e: and of course I agree that turn-based is a perfectly reasonable solution for games of this type; adjustable real-time may be a convoluted solution for an otherwise simple problem, for the sake of less abstraction.
User avatar
Scytale
Vice Admiral
 
Posts: 2826
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:40 pm

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby 0111narwhalz » Tue May 16, 2017 11:56 am

I like the variable-length turns (with interrupts) offered by games like Aurora and Children of a Dead Earth. It lets you go centuries at a time if you need to just do some research, or five-second intervals to micromanage combat. It's pretty versatile, I find. CoaDE goes a little further by making combat realtime (plus everyone-but-the-player pausing), which makes sense as that's a tactical situation.
User avatar
0111narwhalz
Commander
 
Posts: 448
Joined: Mon Feb 01, 2016 11:40 pm

Re: Endless Space 2

Postby Flatfingers » Wed May 17, 2017 11:09 pm

Cornflakes_91 wrote:
GrumpyFingers wrote:Those damn kids having fun with their continuous games! My fun is the only true fun! *continues to move figurines in closely defined discrete steps*


^the problem

:ghost:

Dude, please.

Go actually read anything I've ever written in two decades of writing about games. You will immediately run into multiple occasions where I specifically say that different kinds of games are worth making, including varieties that don't excite me personally. The only question is whether a given feature helps or hinders the kind of fun that developers want their game to deliver.

JanB1 wrote:In Total War: Rome 2 you can't give orders to your units at slow motion or when the game is paused when you play in "Realistic"-Mode. :D

That's the sort of thing I was thinking of, yes.

Scytale wrote:I agree with the others that the second kind of pause you describe is the norm in most modern RTSes. That's how Paradox does it for their 4x games and how Distant Worlds does it too.

Which is why I can play Paradox games without getting too frustrated. But that's despite the game-real-time mechanic, which I don't think adds any strategic fun.

A ticking clock adds exciting tactical fun. On its own, there's no problem with that kind of fun -- the problem is when features added to support tactical fun interfere with other kinds of fun, such as strategic fun, which is what a ticking clock does.

Again, I think an important part of this result comes from player perceptions. Even if a game-real-time clock can be adjusted to tick slowly, it still ticks, creating a sense of pressure in players to hurry up and act. That can't help but pull players out of strategic thinking... and that's the point at which this feature damages the goal of letting players have strategic fun. Why do that when you don't have to?

An alternative here might be to have distinctively separate tactical and strategic modes, where strategic mode is turn-based -- pattern perception and planning for as long as you like -- followed by a RT tactical mode for actually trying to accomplish the strategic goal(s) you set in this turn.

Other than the extra design effort to split these two modes, this seems like a best-of-both-worlds solution for someone who wants to make a strategy game but just cannot resist the urge to have a RT clock in there somewhere. :)

Scytale wrote:The Paradox games in particular also have adjustable rates: you could adjust game speed by up to a factor of 8, I think.

I like the adjustable-rate feature. It's a nice gesture. But it wouldn't be needed if the game used turns to begin with.

One other note: I thought my "get rid of individual units" suggestion would have raised some hackles; it's a little bit Out There. I think it's defensible, but I am curious what others here think of it as a method for focusing 4X games on devising strategic plans instead of micromanaging units tactically.
User avatar
Flatfingers
Vice Admiral
 
Posts: 4541
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:45 am

PreviousNext

Return to Games



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests