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Author Topic: Filler Worlds  (Read 3369 times)

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Offline Quicksilver

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Filler Worlds
« on: May 26, 2014, 09:41:14 PM »
I think probably one of the bigger problems with prior leagues is the importance of factory worlds, if you were going to PA someone, you PA'd a factory world because nothing else had significance or value. All planets could have the same amount of industry max and the important worlds either had a factory or a charge station. Both CS and Factories being stolen often had a huge negative impacts on lesser units and if they lost a few in a short matter, they would often leave the league.
So my idea is that there needs to be something else to interest units into attacking that is both meaningful but also not largely detrimental to the losing faction. This could be done in the way of giving bonuses to successful PAs on non-factory worlds, to adding other ways planets are meaningful (something to do with morale boosting planets maybe), and also possibly restricting attacking more than just capital worlds from attack or adding extra requirements to attacking a factory world (maybe require the capture of x many neighboring planets before you can attack it)?

It all boils down to their either needs to be more strategical value for non-factory non-charge worlds to keep the stronger units for running people out of the league when they decide to attack key worlds right off the bat.

Offline Vercinix

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Re: Filler Worlds
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2014, 10:04:58 PM »
This is a concern that we have certainly thought of and are working on fixing.  The trick is making sure w/e it is we develop will not dramatically imbalance the league but still make it important enough that people would take it over a Factory planet. 

Derv and My first concept was implementing a secondary resource (c-bills being the primary) that would be needed to build nearly everything.  This resource wasn't movable like Industry is and would allow the staff to manipulate the map in a way that we could make unimportant areas suddenly important either at the beginning, or in the middle (resources were found and others were depleted) 

The problem however was it was to much to manage for teams and added an odd element when it came to the teams who wouldn't have factories.  Currently we are looking into a few other avenues pertaining to unique objectives for every faction type and unique house bonuses that would tie in many "uninteresting" planets. 

This is only a concept on the board and we would love to hear if there are other ideas for this particular area that we might explore further if anyone wants to throw some ideas in the air.

Offline Derv

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Re: Filler Worlds
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2014, 07:22:23 PM »
The system we're looking at adding (at least for the houses and periphery) would be the "VIP System". A certain number of VIPs would be given to each faction depending on their size, and would randomly move location within the faction every month. The more VIPs you have, the less of a chance you have of your planets going into random Political Instability (and probably also lessen your upkeep costs). Pirates or Infamous (rather than house mercs, the dirty kind) Mercs can launch a VIP raid on the planet to grab them and hold onto them as a hostage to sell back to the people they stole the VIP from.

I'd still like to hear a few other ideas on how to make the "filler" planets important. One thing we are going to do is remove the ability to move industry by jumpship. This means if you invest in the planet, it's there to stay.
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Offline Quicksilver

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Re: Filler Worlds
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2014, 01:38:36 PM »
I was thinking that on top of the VIP worlds, which I agree are a good idea, that worlds be separated into income makers and income sinks. That is, factory worlds no longer have industry, they no longer make you money (unless an ally purchases from there that is). That way teams have to put more emphasis on protecting their "filler" worlds because if left with only factory worlds, they have no income. That or substantially reduce the income made from factory worlds. It also prevents people from placing factories all over their space just for the SDS bonus.

I would also love to see CS locations locked once setup, I've seen units try and cherry pick all CS from an enemy and slowly widdle away a units supply of them, and considering these most likely won't be purchasable for MWO, locking their location seems like a good option (that way units have better chances of getting them back).
« Last Edit: June 01, 2014, 01:40:34 PM by Quicksilver »

Offline (CSA)Fehyd

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Re: Filler Worlds
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2014, 03:42:00 PM »
I was thinking that on top of the VIP worlds, which I agree are a good idea, that worlds be separated into income makers and income sinks. That is, factory worlds no longer have industry, they no longer make you money (unless an ally purchases from there that is). That way teams have to put more emphasis on protecting their "filler" worlds because if left with only factory worlds, they have no income. That or substantially reduce the income made from factory worlds. It also prevents people from placing factories all over their space just for the SDS bonus.

I would also love to see CS locations locked once setup, I've seen units try and cherry pick all CS from an enemy and slowly widdle away a units supply of them, and considering these most likely won't be purchasable for MWO, locking their location seems like a good option (that way units have better chances of getting them back).

Hola Quicksilver,

Just a few points one I agree that charge stations should be in a fixed state until a unit is caught in their own space with mechs on a jumpship that they can not engage with due to not having a charge station within the required range to do so.  You would basically be punishing that unit and not allowing them to compete in the league if a scenario such as that took place.

Regarding industry and income from mech factories I tend to disagree with limited income from factories.  If you are the CO of a large Clan or IS House you need that income just to stay operational, resupply your mechs, and keep your military functional within the realm of NBT-MWO.  I know from running large Clans that a lack of c-bills has a major effect on your units ability to compete and take action.  I will admit instating the idea that you have made would make the filler planets more important but it would turn into the one thing that kept the larger units from being able to play as they should be able to, due to all of the costs/expenses incurred by those units including turn based upkeep/maintenance fees. I'm not trying to be a pain in your you know what, I simply wanted to let you see what you were saying from a large units perspective and how it would effect them.  Thanks for your attention. :)

« Last Edit: June 02, 2014, 03:47:57 PM by (CSA)Fehyd »
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Offline Quicksilver

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Re: Filler Worlds
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2014, 11:51:48 AM »
Regarding industry and income from mech factories I tend to disagree with limited income from factories.  If you are the CO of a large Clan or IS House you need that income just to stay operational, resupply your mechs, and keep your military functional within the realm of NBT-MWO.  I know from running large Clans that a lack of c-bills has a major effect on your units ability to compete and take action.  I will admit instating the idea that you have made would make the filler planets more important but it would turn into the one thing that kept the larger units from being able to play as they should be able to, due to all of the costs/expenses incurred by those units including turn based upkeep/maintenance fees. I'm not trying to be a pain in your you know what, I simply wanted to let you see what you were saying from a large units perspective and how it would effect them.  Thanks for your attention. :)
Depends on how many factories a unit starts out and whether or not they are consolidated or not. Think, if a house starts out with 10-20 factory sectors (considering Capitals are generally split up into subsectors), but average about 300 planets, that isn't a huge hit to income. Granted I think the plan is still to split the houses into marches (I know Derv was wanting to) but either way, this plan would more so hurt smaller units that were often making more money than some of the larger units.

69 was the magic number in previous leagues where you could still get max indy on all your planets without restriction, once you gained another planet you were left with that 125 mil average cap. For example CDS and CSA both made C-Bills per week near the end of HC than CJF had ever made throughout the course of the league, and they couldn't do better without gaining more planets than was realistic. How bad this would hurt clans all depends on how many subsectors homeworlds are being split into, but considering the clans have always been strong and tended to attract the stronger units, I don't know that this is necessarily a big issue.

Offline Peter2000

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Re: Filler Worlds
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2014, 09:48:00 PM »
Having multiple worlds to fight over is important.  I think it makes it more interesting than only a few planets being so much more useful than others, and not having to make tactical decisions between taking a planet that gives you more income (and denies it to the enemy) or forward production facilities or future tactical mobility.  If possible/feasible/almost cannon (factories must be subsidized, or the industry is decentralized to local nobles, or whatever) I'd say separate economy, factory, and charge (though depending on the importance and number of factory/charge, they can have minor economy).

As to the increased cost to garrison and defend more relevant worlds, that could be remedied by increasing overall income accordingly, or decreasing garrison maintenance and increasing starting resources (or any number of other solutions).  Its just a balance on in-flow and out-flow to make sure units can do reasonable things.

Regarding the charge stations, I haven't actually played the league, so it was surprising to me that the issues of stealing and stockpiling, as well as being stranded, would come up.  Intuitively, I'd be inclined to ban movement (or severely limit it), since it allows for easy snowballing, which is bad.  Then you just need to make a robust un-stuck system to make sure people don't get stranded if they use a few battles (maybe a wait a few days and return to capital system?).

Offline Kay Wolf

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Re: Filler Worlds
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2014, 10:33:38 AM »
Let me just say, here, that the greatest portion of major operations in the lore of the game -if that's important, here- is focused around objectives, not Planetary Assault, and I think we're focusing, in this conversation, entirely too much on PA.  The game should be far more strategic than that, and you're all correct that having only a couple of planets to fight over is ridiculous, it makes it too easy for an attacker to take over a whole sector of space.  I created, years ago, and gladly share with you all, now, my Compiled Mission Types Catalog (CMTC 3), which is a compilation of the previous missions for all of the MechWarrior and MechCommander games, and how they can easily be shoe-horned into the mission types set up in Mercenary's Handbook and MH: 3055.  The focus, in the past, has almost universally been on Planetary Assault, who could take what prefecture or county or whole march in the shortest amount of time, and it's ALWAYS been a downfall of the previous leagues.  I'm sorry if that ruffles some feathers, as I truly did enjoy those times, but if you want a game universe, a league, that has far more meaning, then a constant string of PAs is NOT the way to go.

Now, what I'm about to suggest, for the sake of making non-factory planets valuable, might be blasphemy to some, might be terribly hard to implement -though, if you have charging stations, C-Bill application in multiple ways, and means of determining percentages of completion for PAs, then perhaps not- for others, but makes sense, and would lend extraordinary depth to the game.

I know PGI are not going to allow the Houses, Clans, Pirate and Periphery elements, and Mercenaries to own the canon units of the BattleTech universe, from any time period.  However, if NBT is planning to allow it, as they have in the past, perhaps what I'm about to suggest could work, and well.  It's always been that there are fixed values to worlds, to contracts, etc.; the tangible must be respected, right?  What has been put into the lore, and is easily found on the teamspam site and on other web sites across the net, has to be respected, because it's canon, it's lore, and you have enough old timers and true tabletop and MechWarrior veterans in the community that we will go into a hissy fit if that stuff is not properly set up.

However, what about the temporary, what about the intangible-until-needed?  Whether it's the AFFS, AFFC, DCMS, a Clan operation, a Merc Unit contract, a raid by pirates, someone is calling the shots, someone has built a plan to make whatever operation is on the table work... hopefully.  They have a strategy, they know what they want to do, they've set their objectives, written their OpOrders, and are ready to rumble.  Here's the problem, however, with plans that require multiple worlds to complete, whether it's a march invasion, a distraction for another operation, etc., is that there is no tangible -even temporarily tangible- strategic reason to take these worlds.  Why not skip them and go to the PA?

So, whomever is doing the planning of major operations, or even seemingly separate operations in the same parts of space, needs to have a plan, and sees each world for its strategic value.  Strategic value typically has absolutely NOTHING to with the resources of a planet, at least not directly.  A leader may look at a planet and go, "Okay, this planet produces 'Mech lubricants, knee actuators for five types of 'Mechs, and has a booming casino industry, so those things are important to safeguard.  However, what I need is in these mountains over here, that no 'Mech has ever touched, a staging and jump-off ground for further forces coming through.  I've been paid to take and garrison this portion of a world, prepare for incoming major supplies, re-supply those elements that need it, and prepare to send the rest of this crap onto the battle site at the appointed time.  That means I need to be able and ready to defend this area if the bad guys come-a-callin'."

So, even though a tiny spit of land on an insignificant world is being used, it's significant to whomever has built the plan.

So, give 100 strategic points (yes, just like a percentage) for planners to use, to spread among their objectives, whether on a single world or multiple step-worlds, and allow planners to spend these points, AS THEY SEE FIT, on the operation they're trying to complete.  This, of course, would require the background coding and infrastructure to handle this sort of planning, but perhaps it's time to have this available.

The amount of money required to fund the operation, minus certain maintenance and sundries that is absolutely mandatory, is divided by this 100 strategy points, and that's where the remaining funding for an operation goes upon successful completion.

So, our little bit of land in the mountains, that's impossible to get to, but provide a very wide valley way up high, large enough for a Leopard to land in, that without the way station and the mercenary unit protecting it would make completion of the operation impossible, is worth 55 points, out of the 100 available.  The operational budget across these points is 1.5 million per point, for example.  If the merc unit protecting the plot does its job, even if it never sees action, it's worth 82.5 million C-Bills, 50 million of which was necessary to stock the site with repair parts, replenishment, lubricants, etc.  This means the merc unit, for a month's worth of work, could potentially walk away with 32.5 million C-Bills.

This dinky little planet and this 100 square mile plot of land in the mountains on that planet, is worth a LOT of money to the merc unit, and to the employer trying to complete the operation.

Now, here's where the problem comes in... if 82.5 million C-Bills is going to a know-nothing world, then the intelligence community is going to be abuzz on that planet, and someone might get off that planet, or get a message out through the Class D HPG, to get intel to someone, in return for a huge sum of cash, and that information becomes available on the black market... for the right price, of course.  This could ruin absolutely everything for the operation... hence the VERY high pay for the merc unit guarding it.

Well, that's my little bit of blasphemy for the day.  I hope you didn't mind the theatrics and the literary nature of it all, but that's what I'm good at. :D