Ideas for the game

I've played RTS from TA, C&C, KKND through to SupCom and CoH

By on December 31, 2015 8:01:30 AM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

AK785

Join Date 04/2010
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I realise it is very early in the development phase of AotS however the engine is clearly in phenomenal shape.

I would be surprised if the developers / community have not suggested any of the below, but as feedback is encouraged here are my two pence:

  • Strategic zoom - Happy to not have strategic icons, I turned them off in Supreme Commander, but the zoom model here worked where you could go right the way out. As this game is naturally a similar scale, this would work very well here also, right now you can't quite zoom out far enough;
  • Specify a patrol route - If this is there already ignore me but I could not find a way to specify a patrol route again much in the same way that Supreme Commander did it. I want to be able to specify a route and have the units patrol that route;
  • Unit Aggression - The ability to decide whether the unit in question follows the enemy upon engagement. I suspect AI will not do this but I know that players certainly will. If you are patrolling an area of the map with planes a clever player will send over one plane to aggro your patrolling craft and then fly straight back over his base or defence area with a lot of AA waiting for them. It would be good if we could set our units to not follow to protect against this;
  • Shields - Not sure if these are planned, but various levels of these would be good;
  • Extend unit capability - This would need some balancing but the ability to add an AA gun or something similar to an existing unit that did not have that capability;
  • Cyber - Some form of hacker to steal intel or unit blueprints from your opponent to allow you to build them;
  • Super weapons - I've already seen the plasma storm (it doesn't seem to do very much damage). I thought at first this would be like the lightening strike in C&C RA 3 I think it was which was pretty devastating. I think something truly devastating would be brilliant, especially with the graphics capabilities of this game. Imagine a nuke or some Orbital base crushing event. However, as with Supreme Commander you should be able to come back from this with the right strategy and tactics. There was nothing better in Supreme Commander than fighting back from nearly being wiped out to then being victorious, especially in a 2v2 when the opponent left you alone and slowly you built back up and fought back. I think if Shields come in then something like this would be needed, also they can be turned against their opponent, remember the paragon in Supreme Commander? If you built that in your base and it was destroyed half of your base went with it, so there was a good balance between reward (potentially game ending in your favour) and risk (potentially game ending against you);
  • Special Ops - Some unit that can scale the terrain would be a useful strategic tool at your disposal. Some special operations type unit that could scale up the cliff to a base or defence area and plant bombs to damage / destroy units and buildings. This would force greater use of radar and intelligence to protect key areas of the map;
  • "Experimentals" - Loved these from Supreme Commander, they cost a lot to build but some of the battles that ensued with these in play were truly epic;
  • Naval - Brad has said this is coming in an expansion;
  • Transports - As the maps are so large you want to be able to transport units across the map. Supreme Commander had both teleportation and transporting aircraft. I preferred the transporting aircraft as they were vulnerable (balance) and you could spot them on the radar, if you saw a chain of greyed out squares (because you hadn't sent a unit over the top of them) on the mini-map, you knew that your opponent was transporting units across the map. Teleportation of the SCU's was often exploited to get them in the back of your base and start taking out your eco so would be against this;
  • Defences - This might be a little hard to do, but C&C had the obelisk / tesla coils as base defences these were quite powerful. I know we've got the missile battery thing in AotS but something else like an obelisk, tesla coil would be awesome;
  • Destructible map - Remember C&C and CoH where a bridge could be destroyed and you could create a choke point. Engineers could also repair the bridge and balance that out. Now I know you're sitting there saying "but the units can hover". I know, and my request here would be for something similar to the above scenario that fits into the game lore. Equally Supreme Commander did a good job of using terrain deformation which units could use to their advantage e.g. a crater could hide some tanks in which could use the crater as cover and hide down behind it.
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tatsujb
December 31, 2015 1:06:56 PM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

very much agree with all of these points.

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December 31, 2015 1:45:04 PM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Well it's not that early. The game releases in the next few months (the road map says February). I think we should expect some nice improvements until then, but the real game changes after release. Just a guess.

I agree with some of what you said. I try not to think of SupCom when thinking about Ashes because they have their own vision and some elements of SupCom don't fit.

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December 31, 2015 10:14:53 PM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Tentatively we release in March. But the roadmap for this game does out until 2022.  

That long tail might seem unusual because it is.  Most studios are early publicly owned OR they are WFH OR they rely on a third party publisher.

The reason there was no Supreme Commander 3 was because no publisher was willing to fund it.  

The only reason Supreme Commander 2 came into being was because Square offered more to GPG to publish it (though at the cost of acquiring the IP) versus Stardock which just wanted to take Supreme Commander: FA and extend it further.  We were "that close" to being the publisher to SupCom 2. 

But with Ashes, we already have the third race designed, the naval units designed, the new economic and defensive buildings designed, dragon's teeth, multi-monitor support, advanced meta game features (control your empire from your mobile device). Etc.

But for us, we have to release these things in pieces.  

The reason I bring all this up is that even if the suggestions in the OP can't be used in 1.0, we integrated them into our schedule. 

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January 1, 2016 12:35:48 AM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

I will fall asleep tonight dreaming about what SC2 could have been hahaha... I mean what SC2... lets just forget that stuff with square ever happened alright?

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January 1, 2016 6:54:31 AM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Haha, yes, it is an interesting imagination exercise. What killed SupCom2 for me was it being designed for weak consoles which made the game so much smaller. The economy really took a horrible step back with the initial release too, though the expansion improved the economy a lot fortunately. Also the lack of a map editor for the community. I think they said it was a 3rd party too so couldn't release it.

2022?! That is a long tail indeed. I am really glad to hear the game will grow. Hopefully the framework of your engine will allow you to update effects and scale and such if you want the game to last that long. Really hope you make enough from the game to fulfil all your plans.

I believe you though, I know you guys just did a patch for Galactic Civilization II, which after so long is very cool.

Any ETA for the Beta other than January?

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January 1, 2016 6:56:38 AM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Quoting Sargeras77,

I will fall asleep tonight dreaming about what SC2 could have been hahaha... I mean what SC2... lets just forget that stuff with square ever happened alright?

 

Maybe parte that dream can have bit + fun ,we now have a Map Editor on Supreeme Commander 2, its the same has FA but with some bether changes.

 

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January 1, 2016 9:20:31 AM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Quoting Frogboy,

Tentatively we release in March. But the roadmap for this game does out until 2022.  

That long tail might seem unusual because it is.  Most studios are early publicly owned OR they are WFH OR they rely on a third party publisher.

The reason there was no Supreme Commander 3 was because no publisher was willing to fund it.  

The only reason Supreme Commander 2 came into being was because Square offered more to GPG to publish it (though at the cost of acquiring the IP) versus Stardock which just wanted to take Supreme Commander: FA and extend it further.  We were "that close" to being the publisher to SupCom 2. 

But with Ashes, we already have the third race designed, the naval units designed, the new economic and defensive buildings designed, dragon's teeth, multi-monitor support, advanced meta game features (control your empire from your mobile device). Etc.

But for us, we have to release these things in pieces.  

The reason I bring all this up is that even if the suggestions in the OP can't be used in 1.0, we integrated them into our schedule. 

A 6 year roadmap is very impressive. It is interesting to know that you guys came very close to getting SupCom 2, it is a shame that it turned out the way it did.

If you look back at so many franchises, the two most pertinent being C&C and SupCom, they got it so so right and then paradoxically got it so so wrong. The hardest thing to get right is the formula of strategy, the variations that can be employed by players alongside the balancing of the game to allow players the feeling of almost infinite freedom. That it was precisely my set of actions that led to victory, if I had taken any other step along the way I might not have won the skirmish.

I would happily support the game via paid expansions for units, maps and so on. I'm playing the game in its current form and it is my go to strategy game. I absolutely love it. It is the only game in my mind that can even be considered a true successor to TA, SupCom and C&C.

I do agree on the phased release, and I appreciate the sentiment that the points above have the possibility to come beyond 1.0. I work in this domain so I appreciate the risks. Minimally viable product first with a solid foundation and build out from there.

AotS in its current form only fills me with utter joy and is a fantastic achievement in its own right.

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January 1, 2016 10:27:58 PM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Roadmap of this game goes for another 6 years, that is very interesting indeed. If this game goes successfully, perhaps more developers might implement a similar strategy for their game development process. Even though that is very idealistic and dependent on a range of factors, one could only hope.

This extensive long term plan has a very negative impact to Stardock though; that means Sins of a Solar Empire 2 isn't even in their crosshairs yet. ~Melodramatic Sigh~ 

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January 1, 2016 11:37:27 PM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Well 6 years or no, the game must feel finished at release to avoid a lot of negative publicity. GalCiv3 could have had a much better release if the devs had implemented more of the feedback that had been offered during the beta. GC3 release felt six months too early, so there are some lessons to learn in what not to do. Ashes might have a leg up over GC3 comparing apples to apples, 3 months prior to release. Ashes is fun, GC3 was tedious. But aside from the missing gameplay additions, the game needs polish in certain areas before it is release quality (army behavior and controls, responsiveness), and I hope the devs see the importance of that.

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January 3, 2016 1:18:32 AM from Ashes of the Singularity Forums Ashes of the Singularity Forums

Quoting eviator,

Well 6 years or no, the game must feel finished at release to avoid a lot of negative publicity.

I totally agree, there are many examples where early access titles have rushed to release prematurely and received a lot of criticism.

 

I agree with most of the OP comments.

 

•    Strategic zoom
The current zoom in AotS results in a very claustrophobic feeling, strategic zoom is essential for me. A smooth zoom transition to the strategic map would be fine.
•    Patrols
Current shortcut (F). I agree that unit aggression behaviours etc should be able to be selected for each army. I would also like to see formations.
•    Shields
I am always ambivalent about shields in games, they are a good game mechanic, but provide little realism. I would like to see shields as well as other countermeasures such as anti-missiles, radar jamming, EMP etc.
•    Extend unit capability
I would personally prefer individual unit upgrades instead of the quantum upgrades, although I can imagine the time/effort constraints against this.
•    Cyber
At this stage there is nothing to steal. It would be good to see diversity between the factions, and it would be nice to be able to steal/capture other factions unique tech. If the factions differ greatly (eg biological vs mechanical), then it might make more sense to not have this.
•    Super weapons
The plasma storm feels more like a support tool rather than a weapon, which is fine as it is.
I would very much like to see a range of super weapons including nuclear missiles. It would also be nice if each faction had their own unique super weapon(s).
•    Special Ops
Currently as all of the ground units’ hover, they really should all be able to scale terrain (slowly). It would be nice for some units to have unique abilities such as jumping up terrain/over walls etc to give more variety.
•    "Experimentals"
We have dreadnaughts, but these don't feel scary. After playing AotS, I am left with the desire for that "Krogoth" fix.
•    Naval
I look forward to seeing naval battles down the road. As the current faction has entirely hover units, I just hope we don’t get a SupCom2 Illuminate treatment.
•    Transports
The coming soon “Orbital Relay” “unlocks the teleport orbital calldown”, it will be interesting to see how this works. I certainly enjoyed the aircraft transport system in SupCom, it would be nice if something like this was able to be implemented in AotS.
•    Defenses
We have the Smarty System, Sentinel Turret, and Drone bay. I see what you mean, but don’t think “tesla coils” in particular would really be the right fit for this game. It would be nice to have more powerful defenses and/or longer range 'offensive' structures that could be used to create useful fire support bases, and provide more variety in our tactics.
•    Destructible map
I would like to see build-able walls to block routes to slow enemy advances etc, not sure if bridges in maps would be the way to go. I guess we will have to wait for the dragon's teeth to be released.

 

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