Author Topic: Outpost 2 1.3.7  (Read 3874 times)

Offline leeor_net

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Outpost 2 1.3.7
« on: November 10, 2016, 02:05:22 AM »
Alright guys, I want to start organizing an Outpost 2 v1.3.7 patch. In this one I want to go through and revise the included mission packs, remove those that are clearly broken, those that operate off stolen IP (greenworld comes to mind) and include new mission packs that you guys have been putting together (Vagabond and Sirbomber, looking at you guys).

MISSION CODE SECURITY
Vagabond has put out a good point about newly included missions -- security is kind of something to worry about so I'd like to inspect mission DLL code that's to be included here. If you don't want to release your source code publicly, you don't have to but I think it makes sense that we as a community should want to ensure the safety of our users so private code reviews makes sense. Not sure if we want to consider a 'trusted developer' type deal -- I'll leave that up to you guys to decide how you want to handle it.

HELP FILE UPDATES
In this update I'd like to include a modern version of the help file (CHM format) -- I thought it would be a quick and easy conversion process but I'm finding that in fact isn't the case. If anybody is up to the task of helping me with that, let me know.

SHELL UPDATES
Arklon and BlackBox have been working on some updates to the Outpost 2 mod loader/handler among other things... so I'll be bugging them about that and keeping track of updates moving forward.

NETFIX UPDATE
BlackBox has been working on some pretty exciting developments regarding NetFix and a revised version of a game lobby which will hopefully make it easier to connect with other players. NetHelper has been very, very useful in making multiplayer games happen but NetFix seems a bit flaky so this should address that problem as well.

COMMUNITY UPDATES
What do you guys want to see updated/added to the community download package?
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Offline Sirbomber

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2016, 09:51:49 PM »
COMMUNITY UPDATES
What do you guys want to see updated/added to the community download package?

A balance patch after all these years would be nice.
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Offline leeor_net

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2016, 09:55:47 PM »
Quote
A balance patch after all these years would be nice.

I'm game. Do you have something specific in mind?
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Offline Sirbomber

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2016, 10:44:41 PM »
Considering each of Eden's weapons (barring Thor's Hammer and arguably Acid Cloud) is an inferior knockoff of a comparable Plymouth weapon, I think weapon balancing would be a good place to start the discussion.  I also wouldn't mind some restructuring of the tech tree to make each colony feel a little more unique.
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Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2016, 12:42:41 AM »
I am 100% with Sirbomber on this.

Balancing I think is only going to cause real problems with the Outpost 2 game purists, by which I mean if I were to suggest...

 "How about we change who has what weapons, Eden no longer has the Acid Cloud, and Plymouth no longer has the ESG weapon, they effectively switch"

...that somehow someone is going to get their panties in a bunch. Would doing something as simple as costing out upgrades or the weapon/tank variant higher be enough to balance the game? A Thor Tiger tank now costs a small fortune, same as a ESG Tiger tank? Or nah too all of that?


Lastly, I really like the idea of changing the tech tree. One it feels unorganized most of the time to me, and two, would it be unreasonable to suggest having an entirely new structured tech tree that is accessed two different ways?

I'll try to explain better with an example, so for me at least and I would imagine others I think, that when playing quick/quicker skirmish type games (Last One Standing) where these are faster paced games than maybe what the developers had in mind I always feel like the tech tree list in the Standard Lab is a cluttered jumbled mess. There is a less than stellar dare I say non-linear approach to tech hierarchy when researching and especially across what shows up in what lab and when (I have noticed this before when playing yet a good example eludes me right now, I'll come back to this later). I wonder if it is worth using one large tech tree that is immersive and engaging when playing a long colony builder game could be short formed when playing skirmish games? It would still follow along the same narrative just remove all the non essential stuff when playing death-matches for lack of a better descriptive. Like why should there be an option to have advanced warnings for meteor impacts when we have disabled disasters?

I guess similar to what a certain tfarCratS game did. We can select vehicles but not tech level right now.

And that would be my .02

P.S. - I had one more thought, before I got tore away by house and vehicle projects and family stuff outside of the Matrix, I had started on a version of a new tech tree, unfinished yes but one thing I did manage to get working was giving the player the option of researching/selecting one of two different weapons tech trees. I don't know if that is of interest to anyone? (Thanks Hooman for the assist with coding on that one!!)
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Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2016, 02:05:27 AM »
Eden is supposed to be the weapons powerhouse, with a greater focus on powerful weaponry over morale which Plymouth is good at. My suggestions below are based on watching several Youtube videos of multiplayer matches between users here. I have no expectation for any of these to be introduced but are offering them in case they help spur on ideas made by others.

My personal suggestions are:
1) Make the Laser do the same initial damage as Microwave without research (so 20 penetration / 20 concussion each, if I'm remembering Microwave damage correctly). Early game, Plymouth will still have an advantage as they get their Heat Dissipation research early, and thus making Microwave Lynxes slightly superior. This would also make it so that Eden wasn't at such a massive disadvantage at the start either... they'd still be at a disadvantage but it would be much less than it is currently. Weapons could be further differentiated (and by the fact that I think lasers fire faster than microwave with their heat dissipation) by what their Improved Damage research does; for Lasers it adds 20 penetration, whereas Microwave it adds 10 penetration / 10 concussion.

2) Make the Starflare and Supernova weapons cost maybe 25-50% less, to make their one-use, destructive power, tantalizing for use in multiplayer. Honestly, when you have limited resources, a player will likely prefer more units over one-use units. Also, if possible, make it so that Panther and Tigers of these weapons don't appear on the list as no one will build these anyway and just make the vehicle list longer, unnecessarily. The reason for this suggestion is that I rarely see either player field these units, despite them being quite popular to use in Campaign or battles with the AI.

3) Based on the paper-manual, I believe that it states that ESG is supposed to damage friendly vehicles, in much the same way as Acid Cloud damages your own units as Eden. Instead of switching the two weapons, as dave_erald suggests, it may be better to make ESG damaging to friendly units and thus a situational weapon, like the Acid Cloud, rather than an overkill with no risk for Plymouth players.

4) Since Plymouth is more a morale-focused faction, and most players disable morale in multiplayer, a way to give Plymouth an advantage still with Stable Morale, is to give them a higher birth rate / a lower death rate for colonists, than Eden. This way, even with morale Stable, Plymouth would have an advantage in multiplayer.

5) Since Eden is more a technological powerhouse faction, and is often at a severe disadvantage early game, perhaps introduce some of that technological advantages in their structures. Perhaps for Eden, Tokamaks do not suffer damage over time with proper research. Or perhaps, their structures and units build things faster. Or perhaps, Eden researches technology faster per scientist, than Plymouth does. Or perhaps their guardposts have more HP than Plymouth guardposts. Basically, I think that if Eden is supposed to be a powerhouse late game, they should also be a powerhouse in early game as well.

6) Since RPG can fire over walls, it makes sense to me to give Railguns a range advantage to RPGs. If RPGs can fire up to 7 spaces away (I don't know offhand the precise numbers), then perhaps Railguns can fire up to 10 spaces away. After all, a Railgun is firing a projectile at upwards of Mach 3, so it would make sense to me that it's projectiles will travel much farther than RPGs, but not so much that it is gamebreaking.

7) Since Plymouth is much more focused on civilian matters, would it be unreasonable to want all their civilian structures (ie ones that cause MASSIVE morale penalties if attacked, so not a DIRT, but say a Medical Center) to have more HP and better armor, than Eden Civilian structures (and make Reinforced Residences nearly invulnerable to most disasters except for say a LV 3 meteor or a massive earthquake nearby).

8) Make Scorpions move as fast as a Spider. Honestly, I don't even use these things in the campaign as they are weaker than Microwave Lynxes in both damage, attack range, and HP, and they'd be competitive if they could move faster than Lynxes, like Spiders can currently. 
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Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2016, 09:46:26 AM »
GO lordpalandus

Waaaay more thought into this than I put.



  • I like a lot of that and the rest could go either way. Firstly, yes get rid of the option to build a starflare Tiger. Useless....
  • Second, ESG absolutely should be non-discriminatory, shorter range, and possibly more powerful. A wall of EMP and ESG Tigers with the long range mod make it near impossible to get through. I get why the programmers may have chose not to do that seeing as how both the Sticky and ACID weapon variants cause friendly fire damage so why have a third weapon that also does that?
  • And yup, stretch that RAIL gun out long range. That's the entire theory behind that thing, one heavy slug thrown out to a very long range using no propellant
  • I like the notion of keeping the two factions more closely aligned to different ideology's, the way you explained how Eden is more technological and maybe make Plymouth more of a, I hesitate to use the word 'scrappy' faction. And as I am typing this I know it sounds right but I have no way of extrapolating further. Bad day for me man...
  • There could be tech upgrades that give bonuses to weapon systems, say for instance once the GORF has been researched (which has no use in multiplayer, and sometimes very little in a colony game) that the off gassing of metal reclamation goes towards ACID cloud production thus giving a price reduction. Maybe? I don't know, just spitballing right now
  • Is there any merit in having the STARFLARE disappear as an option after the SUPERNOVA has been researched?




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Offline Vagabond

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2016, 10:10:48 AM »
Maybe we need to separate the game balancing concerns and the rest of the planned updates. This thread is going be become very lengthy quickly otherwise.

In this one I want to go through and revise the included mission packs, remove those that are clearly broken, those that operate off stolen IP (greenworld comes to mind)

No Greenworld tileset missions are included in the official download, so that is easy. :) Although, I think there is a full open source port of Total Annihilation here: http://www.tauniverse.com/, so I don't know that anyone cares? If we are concerned about IP infringement, you should probably take to 2 Greenworld tilesets off the Outpost 2 screenshots section of the main website.

Help File Update
Leeor, what program are you planning to use for compiling the HTML Help File? I have HTML Help Workshop 4.74 and HTML Help Image Editor already installed on my computer. I think maybe it came with one of the Visual Studio downloads automatically and seems reasonable.

Offline Vagabond

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2016, 10:19:12 AM »
I had started on a version of a new tech tree, unfinished yes but one thing I did manage to get working was giving the player the option of researching/selecting one of two different weapons tech trees. I don't know if that is of interest to anyone? (Thanks Hooman for the assist with coding on that one!!)

Dave,

There shouldn't be a problem in integrating your tech tree idea into a new scenario (or scenarios) that is fully compatible with the stock Outpost 2 version. Do you have a new single or multiplayer scenario and map in mind for this tech tree? I wouldn't mind assisting in getting this idea to a polished, playable scenario if you want to collaborate on it. I'm willing to help either program the scenario or work on designing a new map if you don't want to use an existing map. This should probably be pushed to a different forum thread though then the next Outpost release.

Offline Arklon

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2016, 03:44:40 PM »
Eden is supposed to be the weapons powerhouse, with a greater focus on powerful weaponry over morale which Plymouth is good at. My suggestions below are based on watching several Youtube videos of multiplayer matches between users here. I have no expectation for any of these to be introduced but are offering them in case they help spur on ideas made by others.

My personal suggestions are:
1) Make the Laser do the same initial damage as Microwave without research (so 20 penetration / 20 concussion each, if I'm remembering Microwave damage correctly). Early game, Plymouth will still have an advantage as they get their Heat Dissipation research early, and thus making Microwave Lynxes slightly superior. This would also make it so that Eden wasn't at such a massive disadvantage at the start either... they'd still be at a disadvantage but it would be much less than it is currently. Weapons could be further differentiated (and by the fact that I think lasers fire faster than microwave with their heat dissipation) by what their Improved Damage research does; for Lasers it adds 20 penetration, whereas Microwave it adds 10 penetration / 10 concussion.
Laser needs to be at least as good if not better than Microwave in the early game, particularly because Plymouth gets an extra pre-Panther tech weapon: Stickyfoam. Stickyfoam is actually incredibly good early on since a) Laser/Microwave has short range, making an army of them most effective when they're allowed to run up right next to the enemy army, which Stickyfoam prevents, and b) it can siege Laser/Microwave Guard Posts using its splash damage by attacking a tile next to it without being able to be attacked at all, which is a huge deal on Pie Chart. Heat Dissipation Systems should be available at the same time for both colonies. However, there's not really much room to give Eden a comparable extra early game weapon - EMP is arguably an upgrade over Stickyfoam, but giving Eden that at the time Plymouth gets Stickyfoam would be really OP.

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2) Make the Starflare and Supernova weapons cost maybe 25-50% less, to make their one-use, destructive power, tantalizing for use in multiplayer. Honestly, when you have limited resources, a player will likely prefer more units over one-use units. Also, if possible, make it so that Panther and Tigers of these weapons don't appear on the list as no one will build these anyway and just make the vehicle list longer, unnecessarily. The reason for this suggestion is that I rarely see either player field these units, despite them being quite popular to use in Campaign or battles with the AI.
I had seen these used a fair amount, actually, but they're pretty much exclusively used for sniping key structures; they're useless in fights. And yeah, Starflare/Supernova Panthers and Tigers are pointless.

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4) Since Plymouth is more a morale-focused faction, and most players disable morale in multiplayer, a way to give Plymouth an advantage still with Stable Morale, is to give them a higher birth rate / a lower death rate for colonists, than Eden. This way, even with morale Stable, Plymouth would have an advantage in multiplayer.
You'd be altering something that would have an exponential effect, so probably too OP.

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5) Since Eden is more a technological powerhouse faction, and is often at a severe disadvantage early game, perhaps introduce some of that technological advantages in their structures. Perhaps for Eden, Tokamaks do not suffer damage over time with proper research. Or perhaps, their structures and units build things faster. Or perhaps, Eden researches technology faster per scientist, than Plymouth does. Or perhaps their guardposts have more HP than Plymouth guardposts. Basically, I think that if Eden is supposed to be a powerhouse late game, they should also be a powerhouse in early game as well.
Most techs already do have a reduced research time for Eden (see the separate EDEN_COST and PLY_COST attributes for techs in the tech files).

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6) Since RPG can fire over walls, it makes sense to me to give Railguns a range advantage to RPGs. If RPGs can fire up to 7 spaces away (I don't know offhand the precise numbers), then perhaps Railguns can fire up to 10 spaces away. After all, a Railgun is firing a projectile at upwards of Mach 3, so it would make sense to me that it's projectiles will travel much farther than RPGs, but not so much that it is gamebreaking.
I do like the idea of buffing Rail Gun's range, but it should perhaps be an upgrade rather than built-in.

RPG is clearly better than Rail Gun as it stands, even with all upgrades (High-Powered Explosions increases RPG's damage, Increased Capacitance Circuitry increases Rail Gun damage, Heat Dissipation Systems increases Rail Gun rate of fire). Upgraded, RPG has 100 concussion damage and 45 penetration damage, and reload delay is 55 (according to sheets.vol, where lower is better), whereas Rail Gun has 100 concussion damage, 50 penetration damage, and reload delay of 65 - because RPG fires faster while doing almost the same damage, it will out-DPS Rail Gun, while also being able to shoot over walls.

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7) Since Plymouth is much more focused on civilian matters, would it be unreasonable to want all their civilian structures (ie ones that cause MASSIVE morale penalties if attacked, so not a DIRT, but say a Medical Center) to have more HP and better armor, than Eden Civilian structures (and make Reinforced Residences nearly invulnerable to most disasters except for say a LV 3 meteor or a massive earthquake nearby).
Makes sense, but it'd have negligible impact on MP game balance.

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8) Make Scorpions move as fast as a Spider. Honestly, I don't even use these things in the campaign as they are weaker than Microwave Lynxes in both damage, attack range, and HP, and they'd be competitive if they could move faster than Lynxes, like Spiders can currently.
Arachnids are the red-headed step children of OP2. Unfortunately the game was designed so that every unit is one tile big; I could see arachnids being a lot better if they were actually smaller than other units, but it's just not possible to do that without pretty much rewriting the entire game. Buffing Scorpion speed might help slightly, but I don't think that alone is going to make them viable.

Offline Sirbomber

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2016, 11:49:25 PM »
Let's not dive too deeply down this rabbit hole, people.  There's only so much we can change without extensive hacking, and the game does have certain technical limitations that we'll have to deal with.
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Offline Highlander

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2016, 03:48:42 AM »
Though Im probably one of the purists so to say, I wouldn't mind a bit of balancing of the 2 colonies and the way weapons work.


As LP points out, Eden is at a disadvantage early game, due to Plymouth weapons being stronger.
This is a bit two-fold as Plymouth has access to stronger initial weapons + more diverse initial weapons. Effectively the combo is Micro + Sticky vs Lasers.

Sticky Foam is a pretty strong weapon early on because of its range, it's ability to damage buildings & immobilization of enemy vehicles. Effectively you can use it both for assaulting an enemy from a distance taking out base defenses like GP's, or you slowly wither down the enemy lynx (as each shot damages the vehicles).
Sticky Foam can also be used to immobilize a portion of the enemy's mobile defense either to divide and conquer (sticky half the force and destroy the other etc) or you can immobilize and circumvent the enemy's defense all together.
On Defense, Sticky Foam is also great to block bottlenecks (See Pie Chart) or it can be used for delaying an enemy advance, as it still retains range superiority.

My suggestion for Sticky Foam: Reduce or Remove it's damage capabilities, either to Structures or both Structures & Vehicles. This way sticky will still retain some of it's niche in the game, but it will be less of a offensive weapon.

NOTE: Sticky upgrade is still bugged right ?


On Micro vs Laser:
I disagree that we should try to make the weapons more similar, rather I would like to see Laser get some sort of boost.
Could it be an idea to increase the range of Laser ? Lasers would get in 1st shot + firing while falling back becomes an option (Possible this could be achieved by decreasing range of microwave weapon as well?)
Another idea could be to reduce cost of Lasers (Or Lynx itself which would also strengthen Rail Gun), so that increased number of Lasers can compensate a bit for the lack of strength.



On the other hand, in the late stages of the game we face 2 issues:
1) EMP Missiles
2) Plymouth lacks the weaponry to effectively assault a fortified position (Read GPs behind walls), without Missile Support

These two issues goes hand in hand, and while Missile Spamming can be quite game breaking, it is also Plymouths strong offensive point (And unique in the game) and Eden has some (Bugged?) defense for it.

1) The problem with EMP missiles is not the EMP missile itself, but rather that they can be spammed quite easily (Build 10 Spaceports and rotate with idling). And while I feel that as Eden you should be able to handle a few missiles, the spamming itself will eventually overcome any missile defense.
My suggestions in trying to balance this issue is twofolded:
A) Increase the cost of EMP Missiles (Right now they give a lot of bang for your bucks).
B) Increase the time between missile launch and missile impact - this gives the Eden player a bit more time to react + allow for cooldown of MDs.
(Ideally I think the Plymouth player should be able to carpetbomb an area and/or eventually overcome Meteor Defenses - but these tactics should have a much bigger impact on the economy of the player, not something they can continuously repeat)


2) Plymouth lacks effective assault weapons (Especially wihtout missile backup).
Sure they have RPG that can take down walls and structures, but RPG is relatively slow in this process and lacks the range to do it efficiently. Especially if the Eden player has time to reinforce his defensive position with a few Acid/EMP Tigers. If the Plymouth player takes out the walls initially, this buys Eden time to reinforce. If Plymouth sends RPG's at the GP's first, they lose some of their ability to punch hole's in the wall afterwards - and again Eden has time to reinforce.

(Comparatively, Thor's Hammer has both range and power to quickly clear out either GP's, Walls or both. Acid Cloud can also be used to take out GP's)

Suggestive fixes: Add some range to RPG ? Increase RPG damage to walls ? Area effect to RPG ?


As for Rail vs RPG:
Rail Gun is inferior to RPG, but it's not by that much in terms of damage only. Rail Gun also achieves its max damage output a bit slower than RPG, but again, not by much. What I feel really distinguishes the two weapons is the ability of RPG to fire over obstacles - which is what really gives it an advantage when players are using common ore weapons only.

I really think that Rail Gun can be compared to Panthers - which is the least used of the combat units. The problem with both is that they fall between two chairs. In Rail Gun's case Thor's Hammer is both more powerful and has better range, and there simply is no role for Rail Gun.

Suggested fix for Rail vs RPG: Keep status quo. I think we must accept that there is some differences between the 2 colonies. (Potentially, see next section of Rail vs Thor)



Rail Gun and Thor's Hammer:
Thor is the natural next step on the Rail Gun research line towards Heat Dissipating Systems. Unfortunately this also leads to Rail Gun becoming obsolete (Assuming there is access to Rare ore). Thor has both better firepower and range (And can fire above obstacles), leaving Rail Gun without any specific role.

My suggestion is to decrease power of Thor a bit, by decreasing it's range. Decrease it by 1 (maybe 2) squares - You will still have the strongest weapon in the game, but it will lose a bit of it's offensive capabilities (It will take fire from GP's and other units before it can get close enough to fire, rather than to have both power and range advantage over most other weapons).
On the other hand also increase the range of Rail gun by 2 (More?) squares. This way Rail Gun will still have a unique role + it will increase Rail Guns stats a bit compared to RPG.
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Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2016, 06:32:30 AM »
Looks like Highlander hit the mark.

Guess I didn't need to start a seperate topic.
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Offline Sirbomber

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2016, 08:44:04 AM »
I think the biggest challenge in balancing OP2 is the fact that there are really only 3 units, and you just glue different weapons to them.  Thor's Hammer would be easier to balance if it was on a slow, fragile unit, but we can't change that without impacting every other weapon.  To that end, how do people feel about this: Plymouth gets Lynx tech mid-game, and instead their first combat unit is the Scorpion.  We buff Scorpion speed, move them to the Vehicle Factory, reduce the cost, and get rid of the separate Scorpion/Scorpion 3-pack options (Scorpions should just always come out as 3-packs).  This will address some of the early game balance concerns, give the colonies different personalities (expensive elites vs. cheap cannon fodder) and make Scorpions actually, you know, useful.  If we want to take it further, we could also retool Microwave from an early-game weapon to a powerful late-game one; possibly some kind of long-range sniper weapon to match Thor's Hammer.
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Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2016, 09:23:30 AM »
Bomber makes a good point. From a production stand point, having a cheap to mass produce unit that carries a weapon like the scorpion it would only make sense to offer that immediately when you consider materials supply with small colonies. Being able to roll out small, quick and nimble weaponized units that can crawl over any terrain, they should have been offered first.

Completely forgot about the one scorpion or three scorpion buyers pack. That was dumb. Secondly, I feel that Arachnid factory probably could have seen more different units built out of it.

Meh
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Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2016, 02:01:22 PM »
NOTE: I don't expect any of these to be implemented, just putting them out for discussion purposes. Afterall, "Expectation is the root of all heart ache" :)

For weapon balancing, is there any way to apply an inverse cost to units? By this I mean, that a Thors Hammer Lynx would cost more to build than a Thors Hammer Tiger, and thus a player would be incentivized to stick to Thors Hammer Tigers instead of Lynxes. If this was possible then we could effectively make it so that players would only build specific weapons on specific platforms. Though, this may not be possible to hack in, so it may be a pipe dream.

A way to additionally balance Acid Cloud vs ESG is that one might be able to research a technology that applies a continuous damage debuff to enemy units after the initial attack that lasts for a period of time after the fact. So, as an example, a Lynx get hit by an acid cloud, and they get a debuff of 1 HP damage per second for 15 seconds. In the grand scheme of things it wouldn't be much damage, but it may be enough to cause movement speed degradation or finish off a heavily wounded unit after the initial effect. Again, may not be possible, so probably pipe dream.

A different way for Eden to be differentiated against Plymouth's early advantage is to reduce the cost of their guardposts and give their guardposts the ability to fire over walls. Thus any weapon put on an Eden Guardpost could fire over walls, such as Laser or Railgun. May not be possible though to implement.

Another way Eden could be differentiated is to reduce the cost of Panthers and Tigers, and thus are incentivized to utilize slower units over faster units. Plymouth's weapons are all built around speed and mobility, so it would make sense that Eden would counter Plymouth's mobility by building sturdy units instead. Perhaps if the Panther costed less to build than a Lynx for Eden, then Eden players would likely stick to Panthers more than Lynxes. I'm not sure this can be done without research, but I do believe that it can be done with research. Afterall, the research to improve cargo trucks changes the resources needed to build them, so could be feasible for Eden units.

Plymouth is honestly more of a faction for surviving New Terra over conquering it like Eden does. Most balance changes for it, likely wouldn't impact multiplayer much as Plymouth isn't really a warring faction; yes it has many units that work ideally for hit/run tactics, but its more about protecting its people and adapting to the world they live in. So it may be best, for multiplayers sake, to avoid making too many balance changes for Plymouth, and focus on Eden instead.

Here is a thought for Scorpions: What if we removed the beam weapon and instead replaced it with a short-range EMP weapon? This way, packs of Scorpions and Spiders could be a significant threat to players as they'd be immune to their own EMP and allow the spiders to steal your units. I'd definitely use Scorpions more if they had an EMP weapon over their current Beam weapon. And, if players researched Arachnid Factory first, then learned later to build Lynxes, this could be an interesting balancing decision.

I always thought of a more "tanky" Arachnid, the "Tick", that would have a close-range (1-2 square range) attack that applied a long-lasting EMP effect, allowing other Arachnids to close in and do their thing. Kind of like the "Tank-Hunter" in "Dark Reign 1".

The problem with balancing for multiplayer is that most players will purposely remove any advantages Plymouth has. Plymouth is better at morale, but players engage Stable Morale. Plymouth is better at surviving disasters, but players disable Disasters. Thus, players purposefully gimp Plymouth. So any balancing, needs to take into consideration that any changes made to Plymouth's civilian population will likely have no effect on multiplayer and thus it wouldn't be dangerous to say make their structures well designed to survive disasters or improving the effects of say positive morale for their birth/death rate.

Another way to balance Railgun vs RPG is to apply a very short duration EMP effect to a unit hit by a Railgun. This is to simulate the "physics" effect of being hit by an object travelling at extremely high speeds. The effect would only last for 15 frames (so if the game runs at 30 FPS, it lasts for 0.5 seconds), but it would be enough to effectively stop the enemy unit in place for a brief period of time to simulate the recoiling effect. I say EMP because I can't think of any other ingame effect that would prevent movement and attacking. And it would be really short so that it only stops the enemy for a very brief period of time, and thus giving the Railgun a bit of an interesting advantage. May not be possible to implement though.

Another way to balance Stickyfoam is to make it that Acid Cloud will eat away at the foam, freeing any units caught by the foam. Yes, your units would take damage from the Acid, but at least they'd be free to move again. May not be possible though to implement.

I'm actually curious about something: Is it actually possible to restrict a weapon to only one chassis? ie Restrict starflare to only Lynx? Or Restrict Thors Hammer to Panther / Tiger?
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Offline Highlander

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #16 on: November 14, 2016, 03:04:13 AM »
..Plymouth gets Lynx tech mid-game, and instead their first combat unit is the Scorpion.  We buff Scorpion speed, move them to the Vehicle Factory, reduce the cost, and get rid of the separate Scorpion/Scorpion 3-pack options (Scorpions should just always come out as 3-packs).  This will address some of the early game balance concerns, give the colonies different personalities (expensive elites vs. cheap cannon fodder) and make Scorpions actually, you know, useful.  If we want to take it further, we could also retool Microwave from an early-game weapon to a powerful late-game one; possibly some kind of long-range sniper weapon to match Thor's Hammer.


Highly controversial, yet interesting option to balancing things early game.
What could work would be to move scorpion research to Standard Lab, then have a short research sequence before unlocking possibility to research lynx. The delay would give Eden a bit of a jump start on weapons.

Couple of issues coming to mind is: Does this make Arachnid factory obsolete ? We will have to be careful with Arachnid speed - otherwise swarming the enemy base might be a very quick win option hard to defend against (If there is no bottlenecks, one could easily outpace defenders and enter enemy base taking out 1 or more vital buildings)


This would be interesting to see, but Im not sure if I would like such a solution compared to tinkering with Laser stats/costs. Though it does give Arachnids a role.

One suggestion towards Arachnid use - would it be possible to add a research increasing Spider's repair ability towards vehicles ? Making it possible to repair vehicles up to 75% of their health (compared to 50%), or even 100% (Though this may be overkill).
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Offline Arklon

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #17 on: November 14, 2016, 06:32:55 AM »
One suggestion towards Arachnid use - would it be possible to add a research increasing Spider's repair ability towards vehicles ? Making it possible to repair vehicles up to 75% of their health (compared to 50%), or even 100% (Though this may be overkill).
I think Spiders and Repair Vehicles should repair up to 100%, and maybe make Garages repair up to 110-125% so they're not obsolete, though even then I probably wouldn't use Garages since they're way too much of a hassle.

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #18 on: November 14, 2016, 01:28:37 PM »
For garages, what if we made it so that repairs in a garage were free of charge, whereas Repair Vehicle/Spiders required resources to repair?
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Offline heyyahblah

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #19 on: November 20, 2016, 05:30:54 PM »
Just my 2 cents, regarding "balance changes".

I'm not really in favour of this because I don't play MP anymore, but I guess changes could be welcome to the users that play MP.

My question is this, if all these recommendations here going in for unit "balance" changes, would that affect the Single Player Campaigns?

I like to play the campaigns on HARD and, I mean if you make changes to the unit stats, pricing, damage, etc .. will that not affect SP games and give the AI an advantage in certain scenarios with certain unit types?

If that's the case, wouldn't that break the original balanced programming of the game and possibly make it more difficult or frustrating to complete? If that's the case then I would personally avoid the patch and leave an unmodified version available for download for users that would want to play a SP campaign.

Just a thought,
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Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #20 on: November 20, 2016, 08:14:24 PM »
Well, if unit changes for balancing was kept to research, then it wouldn't affect single player, as single player utilizes a unique tech tree.

However, if the changes were applied directly to the other files, then probably it will affect single player.
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Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #21 on: November 22, 2016, 04:17:10 PM »
As far as a new map pack or mission pack goes, would it be fair to start a new thread? There is a lot of good content currently, and very easily more could be added.

The purpose largely would be to have a list of any new maps or .dlls handy and available that are completed and ready to go so that future builds do not try to use the same file names as established missions/maps. The wiki already has dynamix stuff and one or two others from contributers over the years, its only reasonable to pool what already is and what is coming up into a forum thread to assist programmers/coders/fakers (stares blankly into mirror) going forward.

Secondly, do you have a specific version update targeted to add this stuff to? Or a rough time table?
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Offline Vagabond

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #22 on: November 23, 2016, 01:19:20 AM »
Dave,

My vision for listing custom scenarios that are not in the sponsored download is using this wiki page: http://wiki.outpost2.net/doku.php?id=outpost_2:maps:custom_scenarios. This list includes all the known, well developed custom scenarios we have (besides a couple of Greenworld scenarios that I haven't looked into yet). If I'm missing some, please let me know.

Once a scenario gets moved into the main Outpost 2 build, we would move them off this custom scenario wiki page and into their respective wiki map page (IE multiplayer, colony game page).

I think adding a new forum post where existing scenarios can be nominated after testing for the next release is a great idea. We should ensure the scenarios are bug free, complete, and of tasteful content. I'd like to stay away from judging scenarios based on what we consider fun/not fun though, due to how subjective this would become. We could probably hash out a little more formal requirements for what scenarios require to be included in the sponsored game download. I would like to see the requirements stay pretty open though, so we don't stifle any creativity. Whoever starts the forum topic should take responsibility for listing the nominated scenarios and relevant details in the first post over time.

As for timing, I think Leeor was targeting about 6 months from now for the next release, although I'm guessing that is a pretty fluid timeline this far out. See post 3 in this topic: http://forum.outpost2.net/index.php/topic,5902.0.html. If we get a decent group of scenarios ready to go, perhaps an interim release wouldn't be a bad idea either.

Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #23 on: November 23, 2016, 03:54:08 PM »
New thread and wiki page use? Love it, and you've just been nominated to head this up as well.

Sorry, wasnt my call (looks around blankily at no one)
I wrote a novella on this site, I can sorta code...

Outpost2 - Life at the End- 2015
Edits will show up in red

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Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2 1.3.7
« Reply #24 on: November 23, 2016, 06:46:37 PM »
Double post. Sue me


How hard to add a map description to game selection screen for multiplayer? Especially for the multiplayer maps that require instructions? Like Fractures for instance
I wrote a novella on this site, I can sorta code...

Outpost2 - Life at the End- 2015
Edits will show up in red

- David R.V.