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spadequack

Heavy Tank

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First, read the new blog entry on the unit changes.

Then come back and check out the details

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Concerns:

1. Naval units are too powerful against land units. Games with harbors on the map are usually focused on sea domination. Win the sea battle and you win the game.
2. The destroyer is too powerful and versatile. The dominant naval strategy is to amass destroyers with occasional battleships and subs. The build data confirms this - players spend more credits on destroyers than on any other unit.
3. Air units are weak and not very useful in naval battles. Flying an air unit in to attack a naval unit is rare and often leads to heavy unretaliated damage to the attacking air unit.
4. Subs can squat in uncaptured harbors and can only be stopped by other naval units. On a map where one player gets a harbor early, that player can build subs and squat them in uncaptured harbors, preventing opponents from building any other naval units to counter them and allow access to the harbor.
5. The DFA + mass trooper strategy is too dominant. All other units are barely used, except on fast, low income maps.
6. The DFA is too strong. It deals a lot of damage over a wide range. Better to have some sort of trade off - focused firepower at short range (tanks) or lower firepower at high range (artillery).
7. The berserker is too weak for its cost. Sometimes more effective to build a heavy tank which can repair 2 instead of the berserker which can repair only 1 yet has the defense.
8. The tank does not have a good counter in Trial games.
9. [minor] The speedboat is barely built and serves a very niche role in countering hovers in the sea or occasionally attacking boats to finish off a unit or gain gang-up bonus.
10. [minor] Air units are a pain to repair.

Proposed changes:

1. [Addresses 1 and 3 above] Reduce land and air attack of boats - see below
2. [Addresses 2 above] See below
3. [Addresses 4 above] Allow helicopters to do low damage (attack strength 4) to subs (with ZoC). Change helicopter move to 4-2 so that they can better retreat safely. Otherwise a helicopter attacking a sub would often be suicide for the helicopter.
4. [Addresses 4 above] Reduce the harbor defense modifier for subs by 2.
5. [Addresses 5 and 6 above] Reduce DFA strength vs Hard by 3, heavy artillery strength vs Hard by 1
6. [Addresses 5 and 7 above] Make berserker attack twice and change movement points from 6->7 to be even with Heavy Tanks
7. [Addresses 8 above] Add Heavy Trooper to the set of Trial units
8. [Addresses 9 above] Reduce the cost of speedboats from 200 to 150
9. [Addresses 10 above] Allow air units to repair on your own or your teammates' bases, but not on neutral bases or neutral airfields

Changes to naval battle (exact numbers still being drafted):

Split the destroyer into two units - the destroyer and the cruiser.

Destroyer (BOAT) -> Cruiser (BOAT)
Purpose: fast, relatively cheap, defensive, anti-sub and anti-air (specialized) ship with ZoC on all units. weak when attacking surface level units
Movement points: 12 (4 water tiles)
Range: 1-3 (1-2 vs subs) -> 1-2
Cost: 900 -> 700
Defense: 12
Attack strength:
hard:10 -> 4
soft:10 -> 4
sub:16
boat:10 -> 6
amphibic:12 -> 6
air:12
speedboat:12 -> 6

Destroyer (BOAT)
Purpose: fast surface-attacking ship. vulnerable to sub and air strikes. can't stop subs or air units moving by
Movement points: 12 (4 water tiles)
Range: 1-3
Cost: 900
Defense: 12
Attack strength:
hard:10 -> 6
soft:10 -> 6
sub:16 -> 0
boat:10 -> 12
amphibic:12 -> 10
air:12 -> 0
speedboat:12 -> 10

Submarine (SUB)
Purpose: close range unit that can only be attacked at close range. counter to destroyers, battleships, and other subs. vulnerable to cruiser and helicopter attacks
Movement points: 9 (3 water tiles)
Range: 1-2
Cost: 1000
Defense: 10
Attack strength:
hard:0
soft:0
sub:10
boat:16 -> 12
amphibic:0
air:0
speedboat:0

Battleship (BOAT)
Purpose: heavy-strength ship, made for targeting land and surface-level units at long distance. vulnerable to sub and air strikes. has ZoC on all units
Movement points: 6 (2 water tiles)
Range: 1-4 (1-1 vs subs)
Can attack twice
Cost: 2000 -> 1500
Defense: 14
Attack strength:
hard:14 -> 12
soft:10
sub:4
boat:14 -> 8
amphibic:14 -> 8
air:6
speedboat:14 -> 8

Also, you can calculate average/expected damage without terrain modifiers or gang-up bonuses pretty easily. Take the attack strength of the unit against the type of the defending unit (A), subtract the defense of the defending unit (D), divide by 2, and add 4.5. Or in other words, expected damage dealt is (A-D)/2+4.5.

For example:

Cruiser vs Sub:
Cruiser deals expected (16-10)/2+4.5=7.5 damage to Sub.
Sub deals expected (12-12)/2+4.5=4.5 damage to Cruiser.

Destroyer vs Destroyer:
Destroyer deals expected (12-12)/2+4.5=4.5 damage to Destroyer.

[update 7/16: fixed +5 -> +4.5 in battle calculations]

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 07/05/2013 15:09:15

Nosaj

Heavy Trooper

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Intrigued to say the least. Can't wait for the test server to come back online.

spadequack

Heavy Tank

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Sorry about that initial downtime. It's back up now.

RockyDog

Berserker

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seems pretty invasive for a roll out of test changes. no chance to test a few at a time?

maybe a toggle during game set up?

Tygerdave

Heavy Tank

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gotta do it all at once since they are all tied together

jeye

Tank

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spadequack wrote:
Also, you can calculate average/expected damage without terrain modifiers or gang-up bonuses pretty easily. Take the attack strength of the unit against the type of the defending unit (A), subtract the defense of the defending unit (D), divide by 2, and add 5. Or in other words, expected damage dealt is (A-D)/2+5.

For example:

Cruiser vs Sub:
Cruiser deals expected (16-10)/2+5=8 damage to Sub.
Sub deals expected (12-12)/2+5=5 damage to Cruiser.

Destroyer vs Destroyer:
Destroyer deals expected (12-12)/2+5=5 damage to Destroyer.


The damage calculation is wrong. It is (about) 0.5 damage less than spadequack wrote because "The total number of hits divided by 6 is the number of sub units the opponent loses during the attack." is an integer division (truncate ).

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 16/07/2010 11:53:38

RockyDog

Berserker

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math speak correction: not round down, truncate, or floor.

yoda12

Trooper

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I think the anti aircraft is too weak.
You can attack a jet and hit only one. You can attack a jet with 3 anti-aircraft and he can survive. When we notice the mobility from air units, it is very difficult to attack with many anti aircraft units.

On the other side, you can attack a anti aircraft with a bomber or a jet and the anti-aircraft losing.

I am agree with Nr. 5 but not with No.6. The DFA is very expensive, very weak agaist attack. When Troopers not so cheap, is very expensive to protect a DFA against Jets, Bomber, Boats etc.

Tygerdave

Heavy Tank

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I think the antiair was fine, but with aircraft gaining the ability to heal on bases perhaps a small adjustment in power or lowering in price would a good idea

spadequack

Heavy Tank

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jeye wrote:The damage calculation is wrong. It is (about) 0.5 damage less than spadequack wrote because "The total number of hits divided by 6 is the number of sub units the opponent loses during the attack." is an integer division (truncate ).


Whoops, my bad. I actually did catch that before I posted but forgot to change it.

Shulgin

Tank

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great to see things progressing spade! since you are asking for our opinion...

first of all, I have a couple of comments on the chart you’ve posted on the blog. I think it would be more sensible to look at this distribution for 1600+ players only. Newcomer will inevitably make some buying decisions which an experienced would never make. Furthermore, as RD pointed out in the public chat, you have to distinguish between pro and trial games. Last concern: which units are built depends heavily on the map. That’s much harder to account for than the other two issues but I’d say looking at a longer period would be a start. I would question that a uniform distribution is actually desirable. Of course you don’t want extreme peaks like the destroyer but it's the nature of the beast that some units are versatile and others are for special situations.

I’ve not played on the test-server yet, but here's my opinion about the changes just from looking at the numbers:
I like the changes made to the heli, however, I think allowing air units to repair on bases makes them too strong. They were quite good already if you kept them away from sea units. Weakening sea units and improving their repair capabilities would be too much of a boost.
Allowing a berserker to attack twice and move as fast as a ht seems too much. A berserker can kill a ht in one round now. I’d like the berserker to be strong and slow, so 2 attacks and movement 6 would be my preferred choice.
The dfa change looks good but the heavy artillery seemed okay before. I wouldn’t reduce attack against heavy units for it.

The whole navy issue is more complex so I don’t want to comment before playing. Just one thing: reducing all sea units’ strength against speedboats seems very odd. That people didn’t use them much doesn’t mean they were useless. They were actually good value for money before. So reducing their cost and making other units weaker against them feels like an exaggeration.

Finally, in principle I’m in favour of keeping (or having) very large values for certain attack strengths. There is a temptation to flatten values in order to balance the game but I think that might lead to a setting where it’s less important to build the right unit in the right situation and that would essentially take away the rock, paper, scissors principle.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 16/07/2010 17:07:09

yoda12

Trooper

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I think air units should by repair on bases 1 or 2 points per round (50% chance) and on the airports 3 points.

spadequack

Heavy Tank

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Here is the graph of credits spent per unit from players who have been with Weewar for more than a year. This should be biased toward more experienced and skilled pro players.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 16/07/2010 18:12:14

jeye

Tank

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spadequack wrote:Here is the graph of credits spent per unit from players who have been with Weewar for more than a year. This should be biased toward more experienced and skilled pro players.


It looks like to many light troopers are build.

Dealing with issue 5 it is imo more effective to reduce light trooper defense by 1 or 2 so that other light troopers can kill them more easily.

The speedboat was imo a very useful unit before and is good as a finishing unit. Also that most ships got their damaged reduced against speedboats makes them more useful. I think the reason for the low spending on speedboats was the lack of harbors to build them and not their price. Therefore i strongly suggest not to put the speedboat below 200. I used the speedboats on the testserver very effective as sea infantry and blocking key positions. They definately had a excellent price per use value. (to good for 150)

The naval battle is certainly more interesting now.

More comments later.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 16/07/2010 21:56:44

RockyDog

Berserker

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spadequack wrote:Here is the graph of credits spent per unit from players who have been with Weewar for more than a year. This should be biased toward more experienced and skilled pro players.


now only show us 1+ years AND NO TRIAL accounts. that tank count is still way too high for any real experienced player.

while we're at it - how about fixing the tank unit? if nothing else increase its attack vs hover units by 2ish. a m1a1 abrams should shred a hovercraft. even without a direct hit, think about all the damage from the shrapnel as it gets up into the hovers fans.

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