| Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 11:11 pm |
Satellites and other government functions were part of my suggestion. The idea that any country, even the most sophisticated, knows where every enemy tank, jeep and missile launcher is at every moment is laughable. There should be doubt, possibility of surprise, and mistake.
| Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 11:23 pm |
Hehe not even the most sophisticated countries know exactly where all their assets are at every moment
(or there wouldn't be any cases of friendly fire)
| Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:07 am |
I was very busy here in the past days and although I did read the suggestions, I was not able to react.
There are again a lot of good ideas.
1. We intend to add a quality field to each product in all countries. It will be an average quality and will include weapons and all other products. Making range depend on the quality is good. We never thought about that.
2. Setting correct ranges will be complex but will be done.
3. Limited capacity per base and fleet will add depth to the game. We have to be careful with the number of soldiers involved. Armies have become huge.
4. We want to add a police force and intervene in rebellions. It has also to do with government types like "police state" where other parameters may be influenced.
5. Contracts for weapons will fall under the spending limit for weapons. There will be a separate limit for other products and stock piling of materials will become an option.
The spending space will increase if not (fully) used and spending it each month will not be neccessary.
6. We are counting the wounded in war but it has hardly any consequences. We will start processing the wounded, some will die, some will heal and many will be treated. They will be removed form the work force with an impact on the economy. This will increase the impact of war on the economy.
7. Limitations on the number of weapons used in an attack, forces the use of multiple weapons. The limitations may change but we will be very careful. We can also increase the frequency of attacks. Before any change is implemented, suggestions will be on the board.
8. Please explain the bugs that make countries invincible.
9. Limited intelligence is on our list. It is not clear what exactly needs to be done but info on enemy weapons should be limited.
10. Satalites are a good idea.
All these points will enter our plan. It is hard to say how long it will take. I will post suggestions and details on these additions when we are closer to the implementation.
| Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:12 am |
We are now working on a new plan for the further development of the game and the site.
It includes new functions but also graphics, the ease of playing etc.
The plan is very large and we are not done yet.
When we know which functions will be first to be implemented, a description will be on the game news.
| Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:54 am |
Jozi, I'm not a technical person, so I'm not sure what to call this... But creating a download package that would allow players to keep much of the graphics and unchanging information on their computers would aid those players who cannot play the game with a fast internet connection. This becomes more important the more complicated the game becomes.
| Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:59 am |
Here is the text of my original post regarding limited intelligence from over one year ago. It's long and was originally posted in two parts:
There is far too much information about enemy weapons placement available to attackers. This makes war too certain, too easy, uninteresting and essentially unfair to defenders. There have been numerous complaints about how an attacker need only create superiority in one weapon type in order to conquer any country, even the most powerful. The way the game is now organized, the only real defense against an attacker is to conquer his/her country before they conquer your own, using the very same unrealistic level of sure information to saturate the country with one type of attack. The Game has attempted to limit attackers by imposing unrealistic rebel attacks on those who conquer too many countries. Apart from the problem of Nuclear Subs and Sub Nukes (dealt with in another proposal), and leaving rebel attacks for a later proposal, in my opinion the best way to make the military aspect of the game more realistic and more challenging, and to give defenders a chance, is to limit the intelligence available. As a corollary, the game should commence country “Intelligence and Research” infrastructure as a means of measuring and using Intel.
I propose that information about weapons placements be limited. In the real world, it is likely that one country may know about another’s total military establishment without knowing where those weapons are at any given time. Here is my proposal for “limited intelligence,” presented in a series of menu options of varying degrees of complexity and player flexibility:
1a. All weapons placements are hidden.
1b. All weapons placements are hidden, except that they are revealed for a brief period at specific locations after those locations are attacked.
2a. Most weapons placements are hidden, except for a number (X) that are “revealed” by random operation. This might be a relatively large percentage of possibly defended locations in any given country, perhaps as large as 30% or 40% of the locations.
2b. Same as 1a, except that the number or percentage of revealed locations is modified by a factor based upon existing game parameters (LR Recon Planes, Proximity of the countries, comparison of Education Indices, etc.)
2c. Same as 1a, except that the number or percentage of revealed locations is modified by a factor derived by comparing the “Intel” indices of the two countries, or by use of available intel operations or resources in accordance with the second major part of my proposal, for country Intel and Research apparatus, below.
3a. All weapons placements are hidden, except that a limited number of locations may be revealed by an attacker. This number of “reveals,” call it X, could be fixed per running month of war. For example, an attacker can obtain defender information by using the “View Location” menu item 10 times in a running month (vs. calendar month) against each country with which he is at war. The precise number of “reveals” allowed isn’t important – I’m not sure if 10 is too many or too few.
3b. As a variant of 2a, above, the fixed number of “reveals” could be modified by a factor based on existing game elements (LR Recon Planes, Proximity of the two countries, etc.)
3c. As a variant of the above, the fixed number of “reveals” could be modified by using comparative “Intel” scores, or available “Intel” operations in accordance with the second major part of my proposal concerning country “Intelligence and Research” apparatus.
4. Placement of weapons by 3Cs and by player countries on Automatic Defense should be modified to make the spread of weapons very Uneven. The placement of weapons could be made by an algorithm that heavily emphasizes locations of “high” value (Cities, Bases) and that de-emphasizes locations of “low” value (Forts, Towns, Corporations).
Variants 1 thru 3 are obviously mutually exclusive. They are options. #4 is a necessity and should be incorporated no matter what.
The nice thing about hidden, partially hidden, hidden with player means of “revealing,” methods is that they create uncertainty in warfare. They make it possible for an active defender to fool an attacker, to bait him into attacking a heavily defended city or to waste time testing locations before attacking in force. This would be most realistic. It makes defending a real, if still difficult, option.
Please let me have your comments on my notions. Your advice and criticism will be incorporated in any proposal that I send to the Game Admins.
Part II, “Intelligence and Research Infrastructure” will follow in the next post.
Sunday, December 15, 2002 - 12:03 am
Intelligence and Research Infrastructure
Most advanced countries in the real world spend huge resources on Intelligence and Research. It would be an interesting addition to the game and could be made to have challenging impacts on both economy and warfare.
A new page could be created to gather in one place the inputs and products of I&R infrastructure. The I&R infrastructure would use workers (especially higher level workers), based on the number of “Bureaus,” “Embassies,” and “Satellite Ground Stations” built (I use Bureaus as a short-hand for all of the basic home country elements of a country’s Foreign Ministry, Spy Agency, etc.). Bureaus would be built like Schools or Universities are built at present, with worker requirements and maintenance costs. Additionally, countries could build Embassies and Satellite Ground Stations, and could buy and launch Satellites. Bureaus would provide general input into an Intel index, and Embassies would have smaller general input but might have some additional input into foreign operations allowed. Satellites would provide inputs into the general Intel index, and would have special input into increasing the number of “reveals” allowed in the earlier proposal for “Limited Intelligence.” Satellite Ground Stations would allow Satellites to operate, and provide only limited additional inputs into the general Intel index after the first one (one is necessary, more than that wouldn’t add much but would provide back up). Ground Stations would appear on the map and are obvious targets. All of these items should be expensive to build – 1 Billion for a Bureau, .5 Billion for an Embassy, 1 Billion each for Ground Stations and Satellites, and Satellites would only last 10 years before they disappeared (or a random factor of 1% per month that they would fail, or some such).
The Intel infrastructure would contribute to a general Intel Index, which would also be strongly modified by the country Education Index. The Intel Index would only have a small effect on the general civic welfare score and the main country score, but it might have significant effects on war fighting by modifying the number of “reveals” allowed either as a raw number, or in comparison to the defending country’s Intel index. The Intel Index might also have an effect on corporate market practices in the same way that the Transportation Index does, though with smaller effect.
As a variant, the Intel infrastructure could give players a number of Intel operations that can be performed every month. These operations would not be saved up, but would be “use or lose” products each month. They might be contributed to a war effort by increasing “reveals” on defending locations, they might be used to allow players to peek at information that is kept Secret by other players, perhaps even allow players to read some of another player’s correspondence. I’m not sure if we want to get into things like economic sabotage, but that is also a possibility and the variations are endless.
The necessity to build Intel infrastructures will require the addition of several corporation types and will be an additional major challenge for players. It will require players who wish to successfully fight wars to attend to additional significant economic demands in support of such an infrastructure. It can also be mighty fun.
| Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 02:53 am |
When I say that you have the richest empire Erehwon, I'm not only referring to your monetary assets. You also have something like 15 of the top 20 immigration indexes, which implies quite a bit.
And I think the facts and history prove that the war game is imbalanced towards the defensive side. If you take two equally skilled players, completely on their own, assume that they're both putting in the same amount of time and effort, and both players will be able to keep their countries out of the other player's hands.
| Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 03:56 am |
Erehwon, a "downloadable package" is a good thought, however that then leaves the door open to "hacking". SimCountry is primarily a “browser based” game. With permanent files on a players hard drive, leaves them to be manipulated, altered and any other "scheme" the low life may deem. It is a mean world out there in cyberspace with some quite “nasty” villains. A downloadable package on the surface is grand, but it will bring upon a whole new list of problems for the game (you and me) and the Game Gods.
With it remaining "browser based", leaves the playing field in the hands of the Game Gods. Even browser based games can and are hacked, but it is much more difficult and very detectable.
There is most certainly is a great deal of data a players putter must "consume" on each click of the mouse, but with this game, being nearly totally "data", changes its parameters with every click of the mouse.
Great idea though Erehwon
| Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 10:45 am |
I´ve made much the same suggestions about a gfx-pack some time ago. The credo back then was "We don´t need it, Browsers cache the graphics anyway"