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 X-Force - Fight For Destiny - Forum —› English - general discussions —› difficult ground combat missions

Autor Mitteilung
verfasst am: 04.10.2009, 08:13 · Edited by: gazra
Registrierdatum: 04.10.2009, 06:46

 Beiträge: 3
I have been playing the X-Force gameset of X-Force: Fight For Destiny v0.915 beta 4 at the default "normal" difficulty setting for a while now and I am having serious difficulty with game balance during many of the ground combat missions.

I am using an Ambassador Transporter with 6 soldiers (4 snipers who all have a Marksmanship of at least 60 and who are all equipped with Z31 Gas Rifles, and 2 spaher with Electroshockers and Anti-Alien Grenades) who are all wearing Disruptor Armour. I enjoy fighting Tombari scientists because I can kill them with 1 shot or 1 stroke, and they are evenly matched against my soldiers. However, I am getting absolutely murdered whenever I fight Tombari troopers/soldiers/snipers/leaders or Calcanit troopers/soldiers/snipers/leaders because they only die after being hit at least twice and they have an insane number of Time Units (especially the Calcanit aliens!!!). During their turn, they just move all the way over to point blank range of my soldiers and kill my soldiers with just 1 shot. It has gotten to the point where I no longer attempt ground combat missions with 6 or more of these aliens sighted because they always butcher my soldiers.

I have tried using all of the different tactics that I can think of to fight them, but none seem to be effective against them. I am a veteran of UFO: Enemy Unknown - in that game, I mostly used Reaction to shoot aliens when they moved during their turn. However, in this game, I have found trying to kill aliens during their turn (by waiting for them to enter my soldiers' line-of-sight) to be totally ineffective because the aliens just move over to point blank range of my soldiers without my soldiers reacting to them (no matter how many Time Units my soldiers had unused during their turn). Admittedly, my snipers don't have high Reactions. Does a soldier's unused Time Units become available to use when a soldier reacts during the aliens' turn? (as was the case in UFO: Enemy Unknown)

I have researched the XF Plasma Rifle (and it seems to be the best weapon that I have researched so far, but ranged weapons in this game are totally ineffective at a range of more than just a few squares) but I am unable to use it yet due to a current lack of Alphatron and because I haven't manufactured any yet (I am still manufacturing Fusion Engines for all of my craft). I haven't bought a Gandor Freighter or XF Large Transport yet because I am saving credits to build new bases and build Sensors so that I can maximize my sensors' detection area over as much land as possible around the Earth, so that I can detect as many UFOs as possible (and building turrets to protect my bases and Alphatron mines seems to be a much higher priority (because UFOs are already attacking my bases and Alphatron mines, and I am only into the start of week 4 of the game!!!)). I haven't researched any alien autopsies, the Alien Fusion Blaster?/Rifle?, the AM Grenade, or Even Photon Fields yet. I haven't recycled any alien weapons or ammunition yet.

Does anybody else think that the alien troopers/soldiers/snipers/leaders have WAY too much Health and WAY too many Time Units? (I haven't mucked around with the game editor yet, so I don't know how to edit the script of gamesets to reduce the Health and Time Units of alien troopers/soldiers/snipers/leaders)

Does anybody else think that alien spaceships attacking the player's bases and Alphatron mines in only week 2 or 3 of the game is FAR too early?

I would appreciate any help/suggestions/tips that other players and/or the makers of this SUPERB game could give me. Thanking you in advance.
verfasst am: 04.10.2009, 10:37
Admin, Spielsatz GalWar

Registrierdatum: 31.08.2005, 21:51

 Beiträge: 5595
First a few things on game mechanics:
Reaction turns exist, but they depends not only on the reaction value but also on the amount of time units the unit has left. This means that a soldier with full TU has a much higher chance of getting a reaction turn when spotting an alien during their turn than a soldier which moved and left only enough time units for a single shot.

The amount of money you get each week depends on the points you earned in that week by research, ground combat and UFO shotdown. This always starts by zero - if you don't have any points you won't get any money. That is different from the old XCOM games, and it means that you have to watch the upkeep of your bases - if you build your bases too fast, you will run out of money to compensate for losses and surprises.

Now a few things about tactics:
currently there are two maps available if you play the old default: the village and the crashsite. I created the crahsite map because there is a tactic that makes every alien dead meat on the village map - during the last games I made on the old default gameset in most cases the aliens never even got a chance to fire at any of my soldiers.

You move your soldiers until you have found the houses occupied by aliens (they always start inside the houses on the village map, and usually in groups of 5).
Then you position your soldiers two spaces away from the entrance (to the side, not in front of it), facing it and wait until they come out. They will not see your soldiers without turning, and since your units didn't move there is a high chance that they get a reaction turn with their full time units and the alien standing 2 spaces in front of them...

Now about the old default:
Several versions before we decided to switch to the galactic war as the new default gameset, and work has concentrated on that since then. We maintain the old default to keep it basically playable, but we don't concentrate on keeping it balanced or even include all the new option made available with the last updates (some of them were added, but not much).
Especially in ground combat the AI was switched to scripting instead of using the old fixed internal routines, and we discovered that the new AI-Script basically created a much better AI then expected by removing some limitations of the old internal AI - for example the old AI fired only once per turn, even if time unis and ammo was available, and it also never checked for to-hit-probability.

When that was discovered I had to seriously re-balance the alien weapon in the galactic war, and most of the other gameset creator had to do the same. If I remember correctly Natter might have done some adjustments with the old default gameset, but even if he did I don't think that he checked the Balance for long.

So yes, the old default is probably not balanced any longer with the new changes to the game engine - and we won't put much effort into balancing it as we concentrate our work on the GalWar-gameset (and the Smirkovich, but that isn't available in english)

In the last months there were two more gamesets made with english language by gameset creators from the community - you can find the links for those in our forum, they aren't available through the online-updater.
verfasst am: 04.10.2009, 11:09
Spielsatz Alliances

Registrierdatum: 14.07.2004, 14:47

 Beiträge: 1185
In addition to what Dirk said:
Zitat: gazra
Am I the only person who thinks that UFOs attacking the player's bases and Alphatron mines in only week 2 or 3 of the game is just ridiculous?

It's kind of a shock when it happens very soon, agreed. But after all, it's mainly depending on the UFOs Ai, and most early UFOs in most gamesets are rather cautious - e.g. they flee if they run into a base with turrents. More agressive UFOs are usually strinking back. And the least, if any, are actively trying to damage the player's bases.
So I don't think it's too ridiculous... but maybe just because I'm used to it ^^
Zitat: gazra
I would appreciate any help/suggestions/tips that other players and/or the makers of this SUPERB game could give me. Thanking you in advance.

As Dirk said, try some of the other gamesets (Apocalypse, Diary Of William Walker, Galactic War) that are more balanced. But careful, the latter is a hard nut to crack is you try to make it without any casualties ;-)
verfasst am: 04.10.2009, 18:27 · Edited by: Natter
Programmierer, allgemeines

Registrierdatum: 06.06.2004, 17:19

 Beiträge: 3186
Zitat: DirkF
If I remember correctly Natter might have done some adjustments with the old default gameset, but even if he did I don't think that he checked the Balance for long.

No, I didn't. I asked about problems in the gameset, but you are the first one with feedback.
verfasst am: 05.10.2009, 08:31 · Edited by: gazra
Registrierdatum: 04.10.2009, 06:46

 Beiträge: 3
Thank you DirkF, sujin, and Natter (that's a cool name, by the way) for all of your helpful input. I apologize for being too aggressive and insulting in my post above - I am addicted to this superb computer game, and I tend to get carried away sometimes because I am so passionate about some things. In future, I shall endeavour to be much more respectful of you guys who created this outstanding game.

I actually had initially tried the Galactic War gameset first (because it seemed to be the gameset that was most translated into English) but I did not like all of the craft that the player begins a new game with. When I tried the X-Force gameset, I really liked all of the craft and weapons - that gameset reminds me the most of UFO: Enemy Unknown, so that's why I preferred playing it more. But now that I know that Galactic War is the main gameset, I shall play that now instead. I am actually disappointed that the X-Force gameset is no longer the main gameset that is receiving all of the development on now, because I am really fond of the X-Force gameset (except for the Tombari and Calcanit aliens - I'm glad to never have to fight them ever again!). I am very fond of the great-looking artwork of the different craft that the player can use, especially the Miranda Cruiser! The artwork for the Ambassador Transporter was modelled on the Orion freighter from the old DOS computer game Privateer, if I'm not mistaken.

With regard to the tactic of waiting in ambush for aliens to move into my soldiers' line-of-sight, my snipers had full Time Units but they obviously had Reactions that were too low, and I only tried the tactic once, so I obviously was too quick to dismiss the tactic. I was just used to the way that Reaction worked in UFO: Enemy Unknown (which was different in some ways).

In hindsight, sujin, I now agree with you that the X-Force gameset is perfectly balanced in terms of when alien spaceships begin attacking the player's bases and Alphatron mines. It makes for very challenging and exciting gameplay! I had not built ANY turrets at any of my bases or Alphatron mines, so I guess my bases and mines were just begging to be attacked. I had built too many bases too quickly without buidling adequate defences before building a new base or mine. Again, I was using the strategy that I used to use to great effect in UFO: Enemy Unknown. Old habits die hard.

In the X-Force gameset, the aliens were firing their weapons more than once during their turn in ground combat missions.

In the X-Force gameset, I much preferred fighting aliens on the crashsite map! I would just drop sensors outside each window of the alien spaceship, and wait for the aliens to enter the sensors' line-of-sight. My snipers would stand to either side of the windows outside the spaceship, while my close-combat specialists would patrol and guard the 1 way around the map that the aliens could get to my squad.
I found the village maps to be very scary and difficult - a much more even playing field for the aliens and my squad to compete in. The fact that the player does not know which building(s) the aliens will start in means that the player has to actually plan their combat sweep very carefully, and that the aliens could attack the player's squad from 2 different directions at the same time (unless they are all stuck in a house that only has 1 exit).

Yeah, I had already figured out how the player's income works in this game - it's virtually the same as UFO: Enemy Unknown except that the player now receives credits for successfully completing ground combat missions, and the player receives weekly payments (from patents) for having researched some technologies.

Thanks for the tip on the 2 other new gamesets in English that are available in the forum. I am eager to check them out and I appreciate all of the effort that people are making to create and develop them. It is very frustrating when text in the game is in German, though.

Natter, those were my only criticisms about game balance in the X-Force gameset - otherwise, it is well-balanced and very addictive to play. Oh, except for the XF Cannon craft weapon - you need to increase the power of XF Cannon Ammunition up to a value of something like 50 because the XF Cannon is currently totally useless. Again, kudos on the designs of your craft in that gameset - they remind me of how fond I was of the Avenger craft in UFO: Enemy Unknown.
verfasst am: 05.10.2009, 12:27
Admin, Spielsatz GalWar

Registrierdatum: 31.08.2005, 21:51

 Beiträge: 5595
just some additional info:
The old default was never intended as the main gameset, it was created for testing purposes only.

The Galwar is not yet balanced - it's far from complete, and that results in several problems with the balance that can't be adressed until some of the missing content has been added. And it was always intended to be difficult to play...

However it was used to test a lot of the newer options, and you'll get several things that aren't in the default - a third ground map, special effect weapons, the first scripted alien bases and more.
verfasst am: 05.10.2009, 18:47
Programmierer, allgemeines

Registrierdatum: 06.06.2004, 17:19

 Beiträge: 3186
Zitat: gazra
I apologize for being too aggressive and insulting in my post above

No problem - I wasn't offended at all. In fact I'm happy about a honest feedback ;)

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