Removing mines/minelayers, any objections? - Page 3

Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

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Decimator
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Decimator » 07 Aug 2009, 19:54

Mines should cost a miniscule amount of energy to cloak, so that when the player dies, you don't have to hunt for the mines. A good value would be .01 energy, or lower if possible. Alternately, make the mines take minor damage when the player has no energy, so that they die after a minute or two of no energy.
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KaiserJ
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by KaiserJ » 07 Aug 2009, 21:51

JohannesH wrote:...How the hell...
haha i imagined you in a rage reading my post and spitting a mouthful of coffee onto your monitor :D sorry about the coffee.

for me, its not at all an issue of cost, but an issue of time management. unless the enemy is laying out his mines in a regular grid pattern (and god help him if he is) removing mines is a tricky and time consuming process; you waste time issuing orders to kill the mines, and then you have to wait for your units to actually kill the mines.

with a juno, all mines are instantly dealt with, there is no timesink other than it being built, and it essentially negates even the best current minelaying strategy in an instant. whenever i've made a juno, a rare event i must say, i would image that each shot hits at least ten mines... but even if it hits NO mines, i still have the knowledge that that particular area is free of mines, and can move my units through it without having to worry.

juno gives you back that extra time that you would have spent removing the mines by taking care of a small amount of micro; ideally you want to be using as much time as possible micromanaging your units rather than leaving long queues. as far as i know, there is no way to stop a juno from shooting. its a unit that exists solely to counter another type of unit, without it itself having a counter; the other small range missiles like the catalyst as well have always seemed puzzlingly out of place in TA games to me in that respect.

so OP is not the right classification, but then, i don't know what to call it.... am i totally off the mark here? i never really build mines (edit: except in 1v1), whenever it occurs to me, i realize "oh well i'll just get juno'd, so forget that"
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Master-Athmos
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Master-Athmos » 08 Aug 2009, 00:07

Initially the energy cost was a natural limit in mine count so you couldn't just spam infinite amounts of them without running out of energy...
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Caydr
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Caydr » 08 Aug 2009, 21:11

I think you guys are beginning to see my dilemma. Mines fit into that very special category which is neither balanced, nor underpowered, nor overpowered. They're just "there".

By nature they have to cause a large amount of damage or they aren't worth having. At the same time they have to be extremely cheap to build or they can't be effective because they need to be spread in large numbers across a wide area.

However all it takes for them to be rendered moot is to march a few fleas through an area, one at a time, until things stop exploding. Fleas barely cost more than mines. Actually I don't have the numbers in front of me at this second but if someone told me fleas were cheaper I might actually believe them.

They can also be eliminated as a threat by a number of other means, such as nanostall, juno, minesweeper, etc.

If someone is attacking you, at best it will slow them down slightly. And yet at the same time someone can completely unknowingly lose a commander to them.

They rely on secrecy in order to be useful, but a single mine explosion later all the secrecy is gone.

What's more, once you've built them, any player would be crazy to attack through the same path where they exist. A stray gunship or any other minor engagement might set some off. So either you set them all off or you porc for the next 90 seconds until your opponent has a swarm of sacrificial fleas.

They're a unit that doesn't make any sense in their current condition. If I wanted to I could probably find a way to make them fair and useful, but what's the point? They don't seem like the kind of thing that can make the game fun, regardless of what statistics and abilities they have.

I'll keep thinking about this but I might remove them, at least for the initial release.
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Jazcash
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Jazcash » 08 Aug 2009, 22:53

I give you permission to remove mines if you choose to do so.
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JohannesH
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by JohannesH » 09 Aug 2009, 04:05

Caydr wrote:By nature they have to cause a large amount of damage or they aren't worth having. At the same time they have to be extremely cheap to build or they can't be effective because they need to be spread in large numbers across a wide area.
Disagree. Mines are most effective when theyre not spread out, but in a small area where they optimally all get used. Ie. a chokepoint or a part of a defensive line that looks undefended and lures the enemy in. But BA mines are cheap enough to be spammed with ease in late game though.
However all it takes for them to be rendered moot is to march a few fleas through an area, one at a time, until things stop exploding. Fleas barely cost more than mines. Actually I don't have the numbers in front of me at this second but if someone told me fleas were cheaper I might actually believe them.
Flea costs more m but less e than a heavy mine. Dont remember how much though
They rely on secrecy in order to be useful, but a single mine explosion later all the secrecy is gone.

What's more, once you've built them, any player would be crazy to attack through the same path where they exist. A stray gunship or any other minor engagement might set some off. So either you set them all off or you porc for the next 90 seconds until your opponent has a swarm of sacrificial fleas.
The secrecy is not gone unless youre very predictable :) Just make a mine or 2 in a location, that might be enough to scare them away and maybe start mineclearing preparation too for pretty much nothing. And minelayers are cheap (about as much as 2 jeffies) so theres no real pressure to make huge amount of mines just because youve made the layer.
They're a unit that doesn't make any sense in their current condition. If I wanted to I could probably find a way to make them fair and useful, but what's the point? They don't seem like the kind of thing that can make the game fun, regardless of what statistics and abilities they have.
This might be true though, dont think anybody will find the game lacking just cause there arent mines in it.

But if you do decide to keep them i suggest higher m cost and lower e cost than in BA currently. And maybe longer buildtime to outright stop any big time spamming of them.


And dont worry Kaiser, I wasnt drinking coffee
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Caydr
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Caydr » 09 Aug 2009, 04:13

I think I've worked out a good way of solving the mine problem, but it's still likely they'll be gone from the initial release. I've got it written down to add them back in, so it'll happen at some point, but I've got bigger things to worry about right now.
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Master-Athmos
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Master-Athmos » 09 Aug 2009, 23:23

Well maybe a final suggestion: In MA I pretty much made a trade between crawling bombs <-> minelayers. Don't know if that'll fit in your concept though...
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pintle
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by pintle » 10 Aug 2009, 04:00

If aa units (mt for eg) could target ground, flea/wezel flooding minefields would be a lot harder.

There is the very obvious option of letting a player put mines on hold fire and, god forbid, microing his units!
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REVENGE
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by REVENGE » 10 Aug 2009, 04:27

pintle wrote:There is the very obvious option of letting a player put mines on hold fire and, god forbid, microing his units!
As BA is currently. Which implies that you can write a widget that prevents mines from blowing on Weasels and such...
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Caydr
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Caydr » 10 Aug 2009, 07:43

REVENGE wrote:
pintle wrote:There is the very obvious option of letting a player put mines on hold fire and, god forbid, microing his units!
As BA is currently. Which implies that you can write a widget that prevents mines from blowing on Weasels and such...
Here's the widget:

//

You put it before the kamikaze=1; tag and kamikazedistance=80; tag.

Kids these days. Everything's gotta be widgets...
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REVENGE
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by REVENGE » 10 Aug 2009, 08:32

Caydr wrote:
REVENGE wrote:
pintle wrote:There is the very obvious option of letting a player put mines on hold fire and, god forbid, microing his units!
As BA is currently. Which implies that you can write a widget that prevents mines from blowing on Weasels and such...
Here's the widget:

//

You put it before the kamikaze=1; tag and kamikazedistance=80; tag.

Kids these days. Everything's gotta be widgets...
That's funny, how did you think I did mines for BA? Lua? Magic? :lol:
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Caydr
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Caydr » 11 Aug 2009, 01:47

I think we're misunderstanding each other... I've never used nor seen BA's current mine implementation.
Which implies that you can write a widget that prevents mines from blowing on Weasels and such...
When you said this, I thought you were implying you thought the only way of preventing mines from self-destructing when something was nearby was to use a widget. I was being a smartass. I have failed.
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Jools
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Jools » 17 Aug 2009, 11:09

Pretty much agree with Johannes, mines are most effectice when not spread out, it makes mine clearing much harder. If one mine makes your opponent believe there's whole field there, and start mine clearing for nothing, then you have also won, not in metal but in time.

Mines are about adding a layer of desinformation to the game. That makes the game more fun.

I don't know how mines actually work in AA. In ota they sucked because they showed up on radar.
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==Troy==
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by ==Troy== » 17 Aug 2009, 11:31

Personally I use mines quite widely. Iv read plenty of arguments coming to just :

1) its a surprise weapon
2) cheap
3) once discovered, easy to clear.


Iv found a good way to use them as a "buffer" layer in my defence. They are never on front, but if the front line is broken (20 flashes rushing towards my base) the enemy will have NO time to realise that there are mines, he will also have NO time to clear them, OR spam fleas and get it cleared. He will either have to wait for those things to be done == gives at least 2 minutes to build up a new defence line, or he will loose the flashes.


As of the comment that attacking a comm is a "check" rather than "checkmate", we are not talking about single mine, in the same way as 3 simultaneous nukes would kill commander too.

Mines do not bog the gameplay. They add the needed spice to it, the mines just need to be cleverly done, NOTA mines, for example, have a set which starts from a simple weak mine, and up to nuclear mine (with emp mines included) Iv seen them used very effectively, arty would not clear them easily, and usually they do create a dead zone for an enemy, but, on the other hand, they take quite a bit of time to build, and only require 1 unsuccessful rush to clear what was built in 5-10 minutes.


One of the reasons I dont play CA actually is because it doesnt have mines.
Last edited by ==Troy== on 18 Aug 2009, 10:39, edited 1 time in total.
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Caydr
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Caydr » 17 Aug 2009, 22:55

Thank you for your thoughtful post, Troy. After seeing some clever usage similar to what you just mentioned in XTA recently, I am leaning towards keeping them in, at least for one side, though possibly both.
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==Troy==
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by ==Troy== » 18 Aug 2009, 10:45

It would be very insteresting to see them in kbots labs. Since really, even in RL infantry lays mines, not the tanks :) And hence would also greatly buff the kbot lab.

Actually, as a matter of fact, I would suggest an interesting way of implementing them : let them cost small amount (in BA terms say 10m, 300e) but do not let them be an ordinary buildable, instead, let the rezbots/conbots be able to queue them (as antinukes), and with a delay of 2-3 minutes, the con/rez bot can lay the mine. It will give kbots a constant, but small amount of mines to lay in strategical places, and hence prevent complete lock-down of the area as you currently can do, but allow kbots to have extra benefit for narrow paths.


As an addition, if the mine is that valuable (and rare) making it so that heavy mines destroy only heavy vehicles will be very fair to the game, so that weasel rush will not clear 2 of your heavy mines which you just spend 5 minutes on.
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Master-Athmos
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Master-Athmos » 18 Aug 2009, 13:11

Since really, even in RL infantry lays mines, not the tanks :)
Huh?
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Type9 ... Vehicle%29

Quite some minesweepers can lay mines too - that's why I found minelayer vehicles in TA appropiate...
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==Troy==
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by ==Troy== » 18 Aug 2009, 14:44

In WWII anti-tank mines were usually laid by the infantry or engineers. That is what I was referring to :)
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Pxtl
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Re: Removing mines/minelayers, any objections?

Post by Pxtl » 18 Aug 2009, 19:42

I quite simply don't think Caydr has, right now, the time or ability to balance a game as large and complex as the current BA. Anything that reduces the massive complexity of hte game into something manageable is good - small toys like minelayers are a perfect place to start.
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