MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

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[Fx]Doo
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MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by [Fx]Doo » 18 Dec 2017, 13:42

Hello,

I am currently working on a mo_preventcombomb alternative to team and FFA games. It is mostly motivated by 2 facts:

Currently, in team games, the outcome of a lastcom vs lastcom fight isn't dependant on "who is killed first" or "what weapon was used" but merely on a distance calculation between an allyteam's last comm and this allyteam's further unit (from the blow).
The team with the highest distance (due to a delay in the explosions and deaths of all team units) will get the win.

In FFA games, rezzing multiple comms doesn't allow you to perform combombs with them, even if it's against someone who also has multiple commanders.

When enabled, the current mo_preventcombomb setting applies to ALL commanders, nevermind the commander count of the allyteam.

As I have suggested multiple times in lobby and on discord, i think a review of this system could be beneficial to BA.
This would involve preventcombomb being ALWAYS enabled, but limited to certain situations and therefor, not affecting duels or ffa games that don't involve rezzing.

Just as a remainder, this is how mo_preventcombomb actually works:
When enabled, all commanders will take reduced damages from commander blows and dguns. In addition, the Dgun damages will be mirrored to the attacking commander.
Lasering down the enemy commander becomes the only way to kill a commander with a commander under these conditions, but on the other hand, it also allows your commander to survive.

What i have in mind, is not to change the fundamentals of how it works (damages reduction, dgun mirroring and allowing laser), but change the situations in which this would apply.

I came up with three possibilities that have their own implications:
1) Activate only if the attacked commander (the one being dgunned or combombed) is its allyteam's last commander.
Dgun and Comblow damages to this commander will be reduced, but dgun and comblow damages from this commander to non lastcom commanders wont. => Gives strength to a last commander, allowing it to perform some kind of Last Stand. Prevents ending game via combombs. Prevents Draws.

2) Activate only if at least one commander involved is its allyteam's last commander.
Dgun and comblow damages to and from a last commander will be reduced. => Prevents ending game via combombs. Prevents Draws.

3) Activate only if both commanders are their team's last commanders. => Prevents draws. [[edit: prevents sabotaging other players in FFA by combombing]]

[[
Edit:
4) Completly disable prevent combomb in all cases.

5) Activate only if total number of commanders <3. => Prevent draws only
]]

I'd like to gather opinion on the preferred way to handle this.
These are the 3 possibilities that are easily achievable and not complicated to process for players. Keep in mind that complicated rules may result in incomprehension from players faced with unexpected results of dgunning or combombing.

Doo
Last edited by [Fx]Doo on 19 Dec 2017, 22:12, edited 2 times in total.
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MasterBel2
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by MasterBel2 » 19 Dec 2017, 00:12

I really like this idea, especially option #2
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Ares
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by Ares » 19 Dec 2017, 14:55

Adding more invisible arbitrary layers of conditional logic is wrong.

Sadly, gameplay mechanics have been watered down to be more noob friendly over the years.

Dguns should dgun, explosion should chain, transports should transport, air explosions should behave like any other.

The skill ceiling is being consistently lowered on the vocal objections of players that
1. cant build aa
2. can use the move command to walk away
Last edited by Ares on 19 Dec 2017, 16:31, edited 3 times in total.
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Silentwings
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by Silentwings » 19 Dec 2017, 15:02

Actually mo_preventcombomb was introduced entirely for 1v1 and ffa modes, in particular to stop players from winning/drawing as a direct consequence of suiciding their com. It also helped prevent players killing themselves to kill someone random for lols during first minute of ffa.

I am personally not interested changes to it, but I am bemused that additonal major changes are even talked about, when there has been no accepted release for so long.
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[Fx]Doo
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by [Fx]Doo » 19 Dec 2017, 15:44

The gameplay mechanics have been watered down to be more noob friendly over the years.
Prevent combomb is anything but noob friendly. It does, as you said, complicates the behaviour with multiple layers of arbitrary rules. What makes it worse is that it can be enabled or disabled almost silently from lobby.
==> The outcome of a game can COMPLETLY change because of this mod option's state.

This option should only have one state. Either completly removed, or always active.
Dguns should dgun, explosion should chain, transports should transport, air explosions should behave like any other.
In a non-competitive game, you are right. But a part of the community isn't only searching for this "vanilla" experience but also for a challenging game experience.
In this situation, unsure game results or draws must be avoided. Hence the necessity for such rules.

Now what i propose is a general rule that won't depend on a mod option, and therefor on the game settings the autohost uses.
One that will achieve uniformity.

The 3rd option i mentionned is the "minimalist" one. It just prevents draws without altering *most* of the gameplay (== only when game reached a state where it's one commander vs one commander). Maybe that is the one that suits you the best ?
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Ares
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by Ares » 19 Dec 2017, 15:47

Dumbing the game down with arbitrary rules is not competitive or challenging
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[Fx]Doo
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by [Fx]Doo » 19 Dec 2017, 16:23

Dumbing the game down with arbitrary rules is not competitive or challenging
That's kind of a paradoxal answer:

Dumbing the game would mean simplification with the goal of making even the dumbest players able to fully grasp it and master it.
Adding arbitrary rules adds complexity. This complexity can be beneficial or not, but it's still complexity as in opposite of simplification.
You cannot simplify with complexity, unless the level of complexity is so huge that it becomes random to all users, therefor rendering skills useless and creating a new kind of simple: completly random.
I doubt this is the case here.

Although, i do note your suggestion, that is to not have a rule over dgunning and combombing, therefore allowing games to end in either draw or under completly random conditions (== distance).
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Ares
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by Ares » 19 Dec 2017, 21:41

That's a bug a maintainer could fix. When two commanders die it should be a draw, obviously.

All restrictions came into existence to make the game easier for people who complained.

Sad to see iconic parts of BA being changed because some people won't put time into learning the game.
Last edited by Ares on 19 Dec 2017, 22:42, edited 1 time in total.
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[Fx]Doo
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by [Fx]Doo » 19 Dec 2017, 22:08

Your comparision to the restrictions on transports is misplaced.

This restriction was imo a bad way to deal with the overwhelming power of transport combombs versus new players or those who did not bother to make anti air. But since it has now been accepted that air combombs will make less damages, it becomes harder to change it back.

The restriction that i'm proposing (and the one already in place for 1vs1 games) have nothing to do with that. It is not meant to prevent tactics that are deemed unfair by some players. As silentwings said, the only reason they exist is to prevent games that would end in draws, and prevent players that have no chance of winning to settle for a draw by combombing.

Alternatively, I am suggesting that it could also be used to prevent games that would end with a combomb, because I personnally think combombs shouldn't be game end move. But this thinking might be a mistake, because this part is exactly in the same spirit as disabling air combombs, and that is why i'm getting opinions here.

You are saying you don't want restrictions. That's a fine position. But then you are allowing games to end with no winning side. This creates frustration of an unfinished game. You are also allowing users to aim for this draw game on purpose, because if they at least manage to get a draw, there will be no ts loss.
In terms of competitivity and entertainement, I do not think this would be a great choice.

Anyway, the question isn't: "Do we want to allow games to end in Draw?". The previous devs and maintainers already took a stand on this matter, and decided it should never happen.
The question is, "Which way to prevent draw games is preferable?".

Keep in mind that the latest option i proposed is merely an antiDraw system. Basically in the situation where the teams are reduced to one commander each, the first one to kill a commander without selfd-ing (because it would die first, that is obvious) or dguning (this one is, theoritically, not needed unless there is lag involved, and reactivity to a dgun is altered because of network, which makes it unfair to our australian playerbase).

Which makes me think, an even "better" alternative, in the case where you'd want the least alteration on behaviours upon commanders dguns and death, would be to only use prevent combomb when there is < 3 commanders on the field.
In this case it wouldn't even alter combombing behaviours in FFA. It would merely make sure the game always ends with a winning side...
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Ares
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by Ares » 19 Dec 2017, 22:46

A player with no chance of winning wouldn't be able to achieve a draw.

Chess, football, Total Annihilation, many good games allow draws. So did BA before it was changed to cater for people who complained.

Bring back draws and sort out the problem where draws are decided by distance.
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[Fx]Doo
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by [Fx]Doo » 19 Dec 2017, 23:21

Soccer and other team games allow draws because they have a time limit. BA doesnt. BA plays until there is a winner.

Chess allow draws precisely because there are rules to force draws over losses: You cannot move your king into a check. You cannot put yourself in a situation that involves immediate loss.
[[Edit: Actually, in chess, you never do take the enemy king, you just put it in a situation he can't get out of, aka checkmate]]
In BA that would result in completly forbidding your commander to move into a position that involves direct danger, such as running into llts, combombing. That would also mean no self-ding at all.

Total Annihilation allows draws, but even though i've heard about very skilled TA players and a huge (and still existing) community, i've never heard of a competitive TA community. But I lack of informations on this topic, since i was (very) young in OTA times and only played it in single players at that time...
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MasterBel2
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by MasterBel2 » 20 Dec 2017, 02:26

Ares wrote:That's a bug a maintainer could fix. When two commanders die it should be a draw, obviously.
I wouldn't think that it's that simple, it's near impossible for two commanders to die in exactly the same frame. As far as the game is concerned, one always has to die first.
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Jools
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by Jools » 20 Dec 2017, 13:16

Have a look at XTA:s comends gadget: we've had it working for many years, and basically it works like this:
- if you are last commander and dgun opponent, you lose
- if you laser last commander to death you win
- it also has nice staggered comends explosions
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very_bad_soldier
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by very_bad_soldier » 20 Dec 2017, 13:17

I appreciate you guys discussing this in a forum thread which has a specific topic that allows people to hop in and follow the discussion. Much more useful than linking to a stream of random topic-less chatlines which you see elsewhere :)
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Ares
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by Ares » 20 Dec 2017, 14:55

very_bad_soldier wrote:I appreciate you guys discussing this in a forum thread :)
Yes, it's good to discuss changes on the forum like this, before implementing them.
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klapmongool
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by klapmongool » 24 Dec 2017, 19:51

[Fx]Doo wrote:
Alternatively, I am suggesting that it could also be used to prevent games that would end with a combomb, because I personnally think combombs shouldn't be game end move. But this thinking might be a mistake, because this part is exactly in the same spirit as disabling air combombs, and that is why i'm getting opinions here.
I think there is nothing wrong with a game ending because of a combomb. If the current method of deciding who wins in case of 2 last coms doesnt work well enough, figure out a better way. Don't mess with all other combomb situations please. Comms, and their bombs, are a vital part of what makes BA BA.


PS: isnt there a good way to decide who wins in case of 2 last comms already? 1v1 rules have this down pretty well, no?
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[Fx]Doo
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by [Fx]Doo » 25 Dec 2017, 23:38

PS: isnt there a good way to decide who wins in case of 2 last comms already? 1v1 rules have this down pretty well, no?
They do, but are only applied when enabled, and always apply when enabled.
If disabled, random winners in the case of a combomb with last comms are possible, if enabled (which is unlikely in team games since none wants that), no combomb are possible at all.
This is exactly why i think community would benefit from a general rule that doesnt need any mod option enabled, and that won't change wether it's 1vs1 or teams or ffa.

The question remains on the implementation the community wants.
I'll recap the possibilities in case some players join halfway;
1) When attacked comm is last commander of a team. Prevents combomb vs last comm, FFA combomb abuses, draws, and gives last commander of a team more power (since it's immune to dguns/bombs)
2) When one of the involved commanders is last commander of a team. Prevents combomb vs last comm, FFA combomb abuses, draws
3) When both comm involved are last commanders of their respective teams. Prevents FFA combomb abuses, draws
4) When both commanders are the last 2 commanders of the game. Prevents draws
5) Never. Does nothing... obviously
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very_bad_soldier
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by very_bad_soldier » 26 Dec 2017, 00:29

I think combomb behavior that changes depened if its last com or not last com should be avoided. Gameplay mechanics should be consistent and should not change in the course of the game (my opinion):
- it feels arbitrary and unnatural. Cannot be justified by any physical laws or logic (like laser falloff or something)
- unneccessary complex due to "dynamic" rules ingame
- intransparent to the player (I also think a team should not have godlike knowledge about enemy com count)
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MasterBel2
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by MasterBel2 » 27 Dec 2017, 01:25

- intransparent to the player (I also think a team should not have godlike knowledge about enemy com count)
I'm hoping it's relevant to bring up things like nuke and liche damages which are explicitely reduced for coms to make them easier to kill, I think it's a similar enough situation that's just as intransparent.
Also on the godlike knowledge, this could also be applied to knowing players' sides?

But these are side things that probably shouldn't be discussed here, just wanted to mention them because of their relevance. But I think they should be discussed.
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NIX
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Re: MO_PreventCombomb possible rework

Post by NIX » 29 Dec 2017, 20:47

Why change something that's not broken? Only noobs get com bombed tbh because they are too slow to move their com.
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