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Re: Dynamic Destruction

#47
S46 wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 12:41 pm
I agree

I mean with the armor and shield thing - as for destruction, I think that smaller ships, such as fighters, will only get particle effects when damaged, but when a sizable chunk of a larger cruiser or such is broken, it should break off from the rest of the ship. That way there aren't millions of pieces being rendered and generated from every hit, just large, actually cut off or heavily damaged areas.
which still has the same unanswered questions :P
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Re: Dynamic Destruction

#48
What if parts were only able to be separated from the rest of the ship under certain conditions? Ships at a critical health value would be vulnerable to dismemberment, or perhaps taking a large portion of your hp in a short time renders you vulnerable instead.

I would argue that finding and getting to take advantage of particular weaknesses of enemy ships is fun, and having enemy ships take advantage of your weaknesses adds to the game rather than removing from it. in theory, this is already happening with technologies that your ship uses. Some combinations of weapons will be particularly good against certain sets of opponents and bad against others- why is it bad if certain ship shapes have inherent strengths and weaknesses? If your ship has an unreinforced engine pylon, and it gets shot off, I'd argue that that is fun and cool- your design choices have weight in the game world and matter, as opposed to your ship design being merely an aesthetic skin which bullets come out of. That's not to say that artistic freedom isn't important, I'm just pointing out that many games leverage the fact that a player made design has meaning in the game world to great effect.

Perhaps researchable technologies could be used to mitigate/change the normal design constraints? For example, if you want to have rad engine pylons, you research a hull armor material that performs well in thin rods and performs poorly when lumped together as a huge chunk, and you make your pylons out of that. Maybe you need the pylons in the first place because the engines you found work better when there is less mass near them, so you have to place them far away from the main hull, even if it makes the vulnerable, because they confer powerful benefits. Access to certain technologies influencing the aesthetic choices of the player or AI might be an interesting mechanic and would give a rationale for potentially bizarre ship shapes, and might even provide inspiration to a player if they come across a material that has novel properties. If your new armor material works really well when it has as much surface area exposed as possible, then a player might decide to try out designs and aesthetics that they otherwise wouldn't have thought of.

Thoughts?
Libertas per Technica
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Re: Dynamic Destruction

#49
i definitely agree with your basic sentiment, and the tech stuff to mitigate or even improve with various design decisions sounds cool :D
(how to implement and make the AI and pcg aware of it is a completely different can of worms, tho..)

but my main problem with cutting stuff apart in a game thats not a voxel building game is that it can be a very large random "you are fucked now" factor.
from either being unlucky with the enemy's hits or maybe even with the PCG for the ship you are sitting in (for when the player doesnt build eir own industry but just buys ready-made ships)
then its just a game over from something the player has no real control over, which is frustrating and no fun in any capacity.
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Re: Dynamic Destruction

#50
Cornflakes_91 wrote:
Fri Nov 03, 2017 4:54 pm
i definitely agree with your basic sentiment, and the tech stuff to mitigate or even improve with various design decisions sounds cool :D
(how to implement and make the AI and pcg aware of it is a completely different can of worms, tho..)

but my main problem with cutting stuff apart in a game thats not a voxel building game is that it can be a very large random "you are fucked now" factor.
from either being unlucky with the enemy's hits or maybe even with the PCG for the ship you are sitting in (for when the player doesnt build eir own industry but just buys ready-made ships)
then its just a game over from something the player has no real control over, which is frustrating and no fun in any capacity.
Agreed.

I think mitigating the "random death roll" factor shouldn't be too bad though. The way I see it, having your ship get cut apart is more of a prolonged death animation than anything else. You *might* be able to salvage the situation or escape, even with the loss of function, but it isn't guaranteed. Instead of reaching zero and suffering a critical existence failure, at some point you slowly lose functionality until completely disabled. Getting hit at the very beginning, or even a bit after the midpoint of battle, shouldn't be taking chunks out of your ship unless you are getting completely destroyed by an alpha strike, which would kill you normally anyway. This allows for cool comeback moments, where you get hit really hard and lose some engines, but manage to hit back and win. And if you don't manage to make a comeback, then at least you still get to watch a nifty destruction animation as your ship is cut to pieces. Having the tactical capabilities of combatants change as they are damaged is something that could add a lot to combat, as long as it wasn't overdone, as you point out. We aren't playing Limit Theory: Dead Space Edition, after all- it doesn't have to be excessive or happen all that often to add some interesting wrinkles to "shoot until it dies" combat.

As for your point about teaching the AI and PCG algorithms to appropriately use those "design altering technologies", it is a pretty tough problem and is probably a pipe dream. On the other hand, it isn't too farfetched to propose a machine learning system to figure it out, similar to Flat's proposal for self-learning pilot AI. I think the main issue would actually be generating the technologies themselves. Without a human to be like "oh, it has this novel property", I'm not sure how you would go about giving things new, unique rules. That might not be necessary though. Just having a few would give enough variety were the combinations would remain suitably unique over the course of play, especially if you don't run into them all that often.
Libertas per Technica
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Re: Dynamic Destruction

#51
Makes me wonder if you'll be able to install things like onboard repairers or nanobots or something that can help your ship by reconstructing parts that are damaged, at the cost of power usage - perhaps best to use after escaping from the battle...

It would give one a better chance of being able to make a comeback, even if one of their engines is disabled, though of course it would probably cost a lot for something so useful.
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