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v1.2.3 General Feedback
06-01-2014, 02:54 AM
Post: #1
v1.2.3 General Feedback
This is the thread that members of the SO beta testing group should use to report bugs discovered while testing v1.2.3.



This patch focuses on two areas:

1) When we switched to our own server in v1.2.1, I promised to data-mine the games played to provide further insight on balancing racial attributes. This patch I have done that and made first stabs at balancing said traits accordingly. As with previous tests, I am reliant on your feedback to help nudges these changes in the right direction.

2) Cleaning up existing bugs and adding some of the small feature requests which have been asked for.

Note that I am actively refraining from adding major new features; as you may know I have started development of Starbase Orion 2, so I need to manage development time and new content with that goal in mind. As always, don't be shy about providing feedback or new ideas in the forums, as it is highly likely they will influence SO2.
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06-01-2014, 02:54 AM (This post was last modified: 06-01-2014 03:34 AM by rocco.)
Post: #2
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
As promised, I analyzed games played and compiled some stats regarding racial attributes. In all of the stats, I computed the percentage of the racial attributes of the winning players. For example, you will see something like 22% RACE_GROWTH_I. This means that 22% of the winning players had that attribute. How you read the stats can vary greatly, but for non-mutually exclusive traits a goal of 50% win rate would be considered the holy grail of balance. A trait which has more than 50% win rate could be considered out of balance. Also note I have separated these into three groupings:

1) All games, all players (4772 games)
2) 1v1 Games, all players (2980 games)
3) 1v1 Games, limited to members of Siramne's Orion League (98 games)

I used the results from all three of these to help guide my decisions for changes to racial traits. Where possible I tried to buff other areas of the game to counter current high win rate traits (as opposed to nerfing said traits). A good example of this is the Repulsive trait. With win rates from 65% - 85%, it is clear that repulsive if a trait which provides you with a lot of extra racial points for little downsides. Instead of nerfing Repulsive, I buffed spying. This should make Repulsive a riskier choice.

Without further ado, here is the list of changes to racials for the beta test. At the end of this post will be the actually stats.



Galactic Navigators (win rates 63%-84%)
Galactic Navigators is an interesting trait, more useful on certain maps and certain options. I opted to remove much of its late game power and keep it a 1 point trait (which makes it easier to pick up or not depending on the map / circumstance), as opposed to just raising the point cost.
- Tweak: Speed bonus changed to +1 (was +25%). This makes it slightly faster in the early game, but much less useful late game.
- Tweak: Range bonus changed to +2 (was +25%). This makes it slightly better in the early game, but much less useful late game.

Repulsive (win rates 65%-85%)
Choosing Repulsive is a pretty safe bet; currently Military sabotage suffers from bugs and general lack of punch. In addition, spying required you to get close to another empire (due to contact rating) which would place a spy-focused nation at considerable risk. These changes are here to make spying a more attractive option, and choosing Repulsive just for the free points a riskier proposition
- Feature: Added new technology, the "S.C.I.F."
- Feature: Military sabotage can now cause structural and armor damage to opponent ships.
- Feature: Military sabotage can now permanently destroy weapon and/or ship systems on ships.
- Feature: Civil sabotage can now assassinate leaders.
- Feature: Civil sabotage can now destroy system foritifcations (such as Starbases, Warp Gates, Nebula Generators)
- Tweak: Stealing credits through sabotage now steals between 20-50% of target empires credits
- Tweak: Damaging research through sabotage now removes between 20-50% of target empires research points
- Tweak: The contact rating range between empires is now halved (was self fuel range + other fuel range). Spying races that are Smugglers and make use of the new SCIF will gain a clear advantage in contact rating over other empires.

Inadequate Farmers (win rates 37%-74%)
Choosing Inadequate Farmers was a fairly safe bet since for a number of reasons; mostly because production focused races can expand quickly and rely on extra hydroponics and their homeworld for food. That's a fine strategy, so these changes are focused on making that decision a little bit harder. The increase in upkeep for hydroponics will also make the new Tolerant attribute more attractive
- Tweak: It is no longer guaranteed that your starting system will be a binary star system
- Tweak: Hydroponics Center I and II upkeep changed to 2 and 4 (was 1 and 2).


Highly Trained Smugglers (win rates 3%-4%)
Highly Trained Smugglers is getting some buffs, mostly related to how it can be used to complement a spy-focused build.
- Tweak: Highly Trained Smugglers now halves the distance fleets can be detected by other empires (if another empire could detect you at 10 parsecs normally, they will now only be able to detect you at 5 parsecs); before, smugglers would only reduce said value by 2.
- Tweak: Highly Trained Smugglers fleets which contain only a single frigate will now be undetectable by enemy empires while they are in orbit at a star system (meaning, they will be visible as normal while enroute, but once there they will hide in their smuggler hidey-holes and be undetectable at range by other empires).


Sanctioned Piracy (win rates 7%-5%)
Sanctioned Piracy is a difficult trait to balance, as it is a trait which works best in games with more players. As such, I tried to buff it in ways to make it more palatable for smaller games
- Tweak: -5% moral penalty has been removed
- Tweak: Chance to steal tech when capturing a colony raised to 100% (was 20%)
- Tweak: RP gained from "stealing" from other empire's RP raised to 20% ( was 5% )
- Bug: Sanctioned pirate RP "stealing" did not take into account RP generated by Natural Tinkers. Fixed.


The following traits I considered to all be fairly well balanced; they just needed a small tweak in either direction.

Shared Intel (win rates 16%-17%)
- Tweak: bonus equation changed from sin(sharedIntelPopulation/25.0f)*2.35f-0.5f to sin(sharedIntelPopulation/25.0f)*3.2f-0.5f. This means the penalty/bonus at lower population is similar to before, but the bonus is now proportionally better at larger populations.

Battle Hardened (win rates 36%-63%)
- Tweak: racial cost raised to 2 points (was 1 point)

Free Thinking (win rates 15%-21%)
- Tweak: racial cost lowered to 2 points (was 3 point)

Quick Thinkers (win rates 15%-11%)
- Tweak: research bonus raised to +1 1/2 per researcher

Slow as Sloths (win rates 2%-0%)
- Tweak: industry penalty reduced to -1/2 per worker

Tolerant (win rates 13%-6%)
Yes, Tolerant could be re-imagined as a completely different trait. Which is probably will be for SO2, but for now we're just buffing it to make it more useful in conjunction with the hydroponics changes
- Tweak: Now completely removes the maintenance penalty to building upkeep on all three bad planets (radiated, toxic, and desert).





Note: The graphs below use the "code names" for the racial attributes, and not their "pretty names" as you see them in game. They should be easy enough to induce which is which, but if you have trouble with any specific ones just ask.

Winning traits, all games, all players, 4772 games
22%RACE_GROWTH_I
18%RACE_GROWTH_II
5%RACE_GROWTH_III
37%RACE_FARMING_I
8%RACE_FARMING_II
1%RACE_FARMING_III
2%RACE_INDUSTRY_I
29%RACE_INDUSTRY_II
32%RACE_INDUSTRY_III
16%RACE_RESEARCH_I
15%RACE_RESEARCH_II
23%RACE_RESEARCH_III
12%RACE_MONEY_I
11%RACE_MONEY_II
3%RACE_MONEY_III
8%RACE_LOW_GRAVITY_HOMEWORLD
7%RACE_HIGH_GRAVITY_HOMEWORLD_REVB
55%RACE_LARGE_HOMEWORLD
39%RACE_RICH_HOMEWORLD
22%RACE_POOR_HOMEWORLD
8%RACE_SMALL_HOMEWORLD
25%RACE_NATURAL_TINKERS
63%RACE_GALACTIC_NAVIGATORS
18%RACE_COMBAT_PILOTS
15%RACE_FREETHINKING
13%RACE_TOLERANT
43%RACE_BRILLIANT_RESEARCHERS
5%RACE_SMALL_MINDED_SCIENTISTS
13%RACE_SMALL_MINDED_SCIENTISTS_REVB
36%RACE_BATTLE_HARDENED
18%RACE_SHARED_INTELLIGENCE
22%RACE_FANTASTIC_ENGINEERS
6%RACE_CHARISMATIC
65%RACE_REPULSIVE
3%RACE_HIGHLY_TRAINED_SMUGGLERS
7%RACE_SANCTIONED_PIRACY
18%RACE_PERSNICKETY
1%RACE_TALENTED_DIPLOMATS
15%RACE_BLUNDERING_DIPLOMATS


Winning traits, 1v1 Games, all players, 2980 games
25%RACE_GROWTH_I
18%RACE_GROWTH_II
4%RACE_GROWTH_III
43%RACE_FARMING_I
6%RACE_FARMING_II
1%RACE_FARMING_III
0%RACE_INDUSTRY_I
28%RACE_INDUSTRY_II
36%RACE_INDUSTRY_III
17%RACE_RESEARCH_I
14%RACE_RESEARCH_II
25%RACE_RESEARCH_III
13%RACE_MONEY_I
12%RACE_MONEY_II
3%RACE_MONEY_III
9%RACE_LOW_GRAVITY_HOMEWORLD
8%RACE_HIGH_GRAVITY_HOMEWORLD_REVB
57%RACE_LARGE_HOMEWORLD
38%RACE_RICH_HOMEWORLD
27%RACE_POOR_HOMEWORLD
8%RACE_SMALL_HOMEWORLD
29%RACE_NATURAL_TINKERS
68%RACE_GALACTIC_NAVIGATORS
17%RACE_COMBAT_PILOTS
16%RACE_FREETHINKING
13%RACE_TOLERANT
44%RACE_BRILLIANT_RESEARCHERS
5%RACE_SMALL_MINDED_SCIENTISTS
14%RACE_SMALL_MINDED_SCIENTISTS_REVB
36%RACE_BATTLE_HARDENED
17%RACE_SHARED_INTELLIGENCE
21%RACE_FANTASTIC_ENGINEERS
6%RACE_CHARISMATIC
71%RACE_REPULSIVE
3%RACE_HIGHLY_TRAINED_SMUGGLERS
5%RACE_SANCTIONED_PIRACY
20%RACE_PERSNICKETY
0%RACE_TALENTED_DIPLOMATS
0%RACE_BLUNDERING_DIPLOMATS

Winning traits, 1v1 Games, only member of the Orion League, 98 games
37%RACE_GROWTH_I
19%RACE_GROWTH_II
5%RACE_GROWTH_III
74%RACE_FARMING_I
0%RACE_FARMING_II
0%RACE_FARMING_III
0%RACE_INDUSTRY_I
16%RACE_INDUSTRY_II
72%RACE_INDUSTRY_III
32%RACE_RESEARCH_I
11%RACE_RESEARCH_II
26%RACE_RESEARCH_III
16%RACE_MONEY_I
12%RACE_MONEY_II
3%RACE_MONEY_III
12%RACE_LOW_GRAVITY_HOMEWORLD
9%RACE_HIGH_GRAVITY_HOMEWORLD_REVB
78%RACE_LARGE_HOMEWORLD
37%RACE_RICH_HOMEWORLD
50%RACE_POOR_HOMEWORLD
1%RACE_SMALL_HOMEWORLD
48%RACE_NATURAL_TINKERS
84%RACE_GALACTIC_NAVIGATORS
30%RACE_COMBAT_PILOTS
21%RACE_FREETHINKING
6%RACE_TOLERANT
32%RACE_BRILLIANT_RESEARCHERS
7%RACE_SMALL_MINDED_SCIENTISTS
14%RACE_SMALL_MINDED_SCIENTISTS_REVB
63%RACE_BATTLE_HARDENED
16%RACE_SHARED_INTELLIGENCE
11%RACE_FANTASTIC_ENGINEERS
9%RACE_CHARISMATIC
85%RACE_REPULSIVE
4%RACE_HIGHLY_TRAINED_SMUGGLERS
5%RACE_SANCTIONED_PIRACY
40%RACE_PERSNICKETY
0%RACE_TALENTED_DIPLOMATS
0%RACE_BLUNDERING_DIPLOMATS
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06-01-2014, 02:54 AM (This post was last modified: 06-01-2014 04:11 AM by rocco.)
Post: #3
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
Frigate Lockdown fixes and changes to Blockading and System Combat

I fixed an important bug regarding the overwhelming forces check and reinforcements to combat. This bug allowed underwhelming fleets to reinforce combats as it was counting dead ships as "live" ships. This should stop frigate lockdown through reinforcements.

In addition, I have implemented some additional changes that I have wanted to do for a few patches now. These changes all revolve around what you can and cannot do while your system is blockaded / has active combat in it. Here they are:

1) You can no longer purchase production at planets which are blockaded or have active combat. This does several things:
• Never really made sense to begin with (if your port is blockaded, can't send in help from elsewhere in your empire)
• Makes Highly Trained Smugglers more attractive (since small fleets cannot blockade your planets)
• Removes the ambiguity of purchases product at a system that get invaded

2) You can no longer build Starbases or ships at planets which are blockaded or have active combat. This does several things:
• Again, didn't make sense that you could build Starbases or ships in orbit while the system was under combat
• Removes the ability for "defensive lockdown"
• Removes the ambiguity for building starbases during combat (do they upgrade? do they reinforce? etc).

I imagine these might be some controversial changes, so I humbly ask all beta testers to give it a try with an open mind first and lets see how it works out.
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06-01-2014, 05:06 AM
Post: #4
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
Note: I also "cleaned" the device list again, so if you were part of the beta testing group but hadn't contributed to recent versions you were likely dropped from the group. If you want back in, just send me a forum PM.
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06-01-2014, 06:48 AM
Post: #5
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
Great work Rocco! I am eager to test out the changes. I think all of them have promise, but there is one that I am particularly concerned about which I think can be fixed easily.

It sounds like it is now random if your home star is binary. The problem with this is that it incentivizes players who selected inadequate farmers to keep restarting MP games until they get a binary home star system. My suggestion would be to guarantee that the home star is NOT a binary star system. I think it is a nice feature that all home planets look the same in every game (other than advanced empire).

Thoughts?
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06-01-2014, 03:58 PM
Post: #6
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
You cannot start a MP game and progress to the point where you can look at the star map without actually creating the game so that your opponent gets the invitation and can start playing too.

It's quite obvious what's happening if you get a load of invitations and resigned games, and then the game with a binary home star is the one that your opponent seems content with. At least in tournaments and leagues it'd be easy to forbid this kind of thing.

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06-01-2014, 07:19 PM (This post was last modified: 06-01-2014 10:19 PM by anthee.)
Post: #7
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
Suggestions:

I like the tweaks to spying but there are still too few minus traits to give you the points you need for a proper spying build. No matter how you beef up spying itself, you still have to establish first contact before you can even start spying, and that can take up to 30 turns or so on a massive map even if both sides expand aggressively. During those turns, the spying traits you chose do nothing while your opponent can still take advantage of whatever industry or science bonuses they picked.

To solve this problem, I'd like to throw out a few new racial trait suggestions:

-3 Pacifistic
Mutually exclusive with Battle Hardened

This race is averse to warfare and physical violence and prefers to solve conflicts peacefully. -50% command points and the maintenance cost of military facilities (Starbase, Marine Barracks) is doubled. +10% population growth.

1 Patriotic
Mutually exclusive with Opportunistic

This race is particularly patriotic and highly regards individuals who sacrifice themselves for the good of the nation. Receive one free marine unit on every newly colonized world, and the period of unrest after losing one of your colonies to an opponent takes twice as long for them. +20% to defensive spying. However, "Evasion" and "Retreat" can never be chosen as general orders in ship combat except against space monsters.

-2 Opportunistic
Mutually exclusive with Patriotic

Millennia of rule by tyrants and despots have left individuals of this race cynical and self-serving. Your opponents suffer no period of unrest after capturing one of your colonies. -20% to defensive spying.

-3 Very Poor Homeworld

The homeworld of this race is very poor in mineral resources and only yields 1 point of production per worker.

4 Long-Range Telepaths

This race is endowed with the gift of telepathy, and some rare individuals within the race are so sensitive to the presence of other minds that they can reach out over vast distances to contact them. May negotiate pacts and treaties with other races, as well as engage in espionage, from turn 1 (at the lowest contact rating). +30% to all spying.

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06-01-2014, 10:02 PM
Post: #8
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
Galactic navigators - your changes will truly put it into the mandatory list, as it will become incredibly powerful early on when it matters, I suggest, keep the speed, but drop the range, same cost. Otherwise map control on any map will be hard without it, not to mention specials hunting.

Thank you
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06-01-2014, 11:41 PM
Post: #9
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
(06-01-2014 10:02 PM)Janster Wrote:  Galactic navigators - your changes will truly put it into the mandatory list, as it will become incredibly powerful early on when it matters, I suggest, keep the speed, but drop the range, same cost. Otherwise map control on any map will be hard without it, not to mention specials hunting.

We'll see, that's what the beta is for. As it is, Galactic Nav only gives you +2 to range. That combined with the change to additional fuel reserves make it the equivalent of researching Improved Fuel Cells 1. So to "cancel out" not taking GN through research is now easy. Previously, having GN and Additional Fuel Reserves and IFC1 would snowball to give you a lot of distance.

I cannot remember, but I don't believe you joined the beta testing group? If you would like to join, follow the directions here. Informed opinions are obviously given more weight during betas.
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06-01-2014, 11:51 PM (This post was last modified: 06-01-2014 11:52 PM by rocco.)
Post: #10
RE: v1.2.3 General Feedback
(06-01-2014 07:19 PM)anthee Wrote:  I like the tweaks to spying but there are still too few minus traits to give you the points you need for a proper spying build. No matter how you beef up spying itself, you still have to establish first contact before you can even start spying, and that can take up to 30 turns or so on a massive map even if both sides expand aggressively. During those turns, the spying traits you chose do nothing while your opponent can still take advantage of whatever industry or science bonuses they picked.

To solve this problem, I'd like to throw out a few new racial trait suggestions

Thanks; as I implied in the notes, I won't be adding major new features this patch. I'll keep those in mind for SO2.

Diebo and I are on a huge map, we established contact in the middle quickly enough. Almost too quickly, as I was still a couple turns away from having my SCIF ships in place. In my estimation, a better player than myself would have had them in place and a larger spying force ready to take advantage of it.
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