So, at the moment when armies meet there is a game system in place that brings their movement speeds down to a crawl. This makes it effectively impossible to retreat from an engagement and is just frustratingly slow. Not great for a game about strategy.
As far as I can tell the Devs have not really expounded on the why’s of this system but it would appear they don’t want players to take their army and simply bypass other armies while the defending player cannot catch up.
The Devs working on the game are experienced with turn based strategy and unit zone of control is common in those so I figure that is where they have got the idea from as no other RTS really has it. I believe this TBS mechanic is mainly to benefit the defender. So that is what we want, something to aid the defender. Something that would be an equivalent for RTS but that is different from the current system.
My solution is quite simple and fits well with the current game mechanics. After I had thought of it I realised that I believe StarCraft also has a similar mechanic with the Zerg. (If I am remembering correctly)
OK: Units in their own territory move a little faster than in neutral or enemy territory. Simple huh J It would have to be play tested but I guess somewhere between 5% and 15%. There would be no penalty for moving in enemy territory.
So for example, speed 10 in neutral and enemy territory, speed 11 in own territory (10% faster). This means that in their own territory the defender can catch up if the enemy just tries to run past.
It also means when defending a particular node the defender has the speed advantage within the node. This is good for helping to address the criticism that when one side has the bigger blobs/more territory the weaker side has very little way to recover.(In the new system the defender always maintains this slight home advantage)
Nodes which are owned but are cut off from the nexus would not get the home base speed advantage, this adds further strategic choices.
It could be added as an upgrade, say first upgrade gives 5% home speed advantage, next couple give 2% and last few give 1% until a total of 15%. This is probably not a good idea though because the more powerful player will be able to put more resources into research thus compounding the problem of making it very hard to come back from a power disparity. Damage and Health is one thing but seeing the enemy get to the front lines faster than you can as well is a bit of a kick in the teeth.
The other benefit of this system is the sense of progression. At the beginning all the territory is neutral but as you capture more you know you are enjoying greater speeds for it.
I haven’t gone into all of the disadvantages of the current system here as it has been done already on other topic threads, but I really believe it detracts heavily from what the game could be. I think the system I have outlined above could work well, still aids the defender and fits nicely within the existing framework of the game.
The normal speed could be what it is now and the home advantage speed could be a touch faster. This might help to refute some of the criticism levelled at the game for its slow speed.
Seems like a win-win all round.
I think it is a good idea but if it isn’t then in my defence I’ll just say that I am trying to think of solutions rather than just bashing the current system
(Finally, if it was felt that this was not enough, a defensive building that slows down enemy forces in a circle of influence around it could be an option. I would make it fairly tough, very expensive (don’t want them everywhere!) and perhaps not reduce speed as much as the current system)