Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby roothorick » Fri Dec 23, 2016 12:34 am

First of all, turret creep probably shouldn't be outright prevented. As others have highlighted, it's part of the metagame in a number of RTSes, and in those, considered a perfectly viable strategy. It should be rebalanced, in line with the other combat changes, and still a viable strategy, just not cheesy.

An idea just occurred to me.

When turrets are placed, let's have them go through an "IFF calibration" process. Start it out at 10 seconds or so and adjust for balance. During this period, laser turrets can charge and flame/bullet turrets will accept ammo, but they won't actually fire. Now, here's where it gets special: if another turret is placed within its range, it needs to calibrate again.

It takes the spam out of turret creep, forcing you to put more thought into placement and space out your turrets when creeping, but it's still a valid and effective strategy.

As an important secondary tweak, construction robots would ignore ghosts that are within the range of a currently engaged turret. This does slightly change base defense once you reach automated construction -- since you can only repair and rebuild in an automated fashion between attacks, your walls and turrets need to be able to withstand individual skirmishes without outside assistance throughout the game. This should work well without further tweaking there, but you could bump turret and/or wall HP slightly if they prove too weak.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby MJKS » Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:11 am

As someone who reluctantly, but not infrequently, resorts to turret creep, I would hate to see it completely removed. I suggest a nerf that scales with the degree to which the player is relying on the turrets.
For example, giving nests armor against turrets, so it is much more efficient to step in and attack them yourself. Or giving biters and spitters an attack bonus against turrets placed within a certain range of nests.
These should decrease the efficiency of turret creep, but not the viability. Using turrets as just a safety net would hardly be affected, mixing them with your own fire would cost extra ammo/electricity, and relying mostly on creep would be very slow and usually involve continuously repairing damaged turrets.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby mtilsted » Sat Dec 24, 2016 3:16 pm

Is turrent creep really the best way for people to clear bases early?

When I play, as soon as I get oil, I build a flame thrower and a heavy armor and then I clear bases much faster then I can with turrets. just one fast blast with the flame thrower, and then each spawner dies.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby mtilsted » Sat Dec 24, 2016 3:27 pm

I really like the wave mode, but I really think that "Add waves" should be an option for the normal freeplay mode, and not a special mode.

Because one problem I have with the current game is: There really is no way to lose. I can use 8 hours to build my rocket. Or I can use 20. It does not really matter and the biters don't really get much more difficult to handle If I use 20 hours to build the rocket, instead of 8.

But a system of waves every 5 minutes, with ever increasing number of biters for each wave would really make this a game where you had to be effective and expand fast to get enough resources to be able to handle the ever increasing waves and build the rocket before it get to impossible to handle.

And the waves should obviously come from all sides, so you have to defend the entire base.

The odd thing is: Factorio is a game about building the fastest and most efficient factory, but there really is no game mechanics which require you to build a fast or huge factory. If I want to I can build 2 oil pumps, a few buildings and then just use 25 hours to build my rocket.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby obuw » Sat Dec 24, 2016 4:03 pm

I feel guilty of not having posted my "combat revamp" mod that I made over a year ago publicly. I always wanted to share it as feedback of how I think combat in factorio could be really improved to be so much more fun, but never got around to posting it here, partially because I felt that you guys weren't really all that interested in revamping combat (you were obsessed with logic gates and rails at that point :P).

But now that you *are* revamping combat, I feel that I should chip in with my humble suggestions:

1- I changed the pistol and smg to shoot actual bullets like the shotgun. Gave the pistol a 1.6x damage multiplier and a cooldown of 20, while the smg is 1x with a cooldown of 10. They both have the same range, which is a bit longer than the shotgun (more on range later). Also gave the regular shotgun a 1.2x damage multiplier (so it's more ammo-efficient than the combat shotgun giving you a choice).

2- Upped magazine sizes to 40 so it doesn't feel like shooting bullets is punishment (combat is fun and should be encouraged imo)

3- Increased player speed to 0.25, and greatly reduced movement_slow_down_factor for weapons (pistol to 0.05, smg to 0.3, shotgun to 0.4, combatshotgun to 0.2, flamethrower to 0.5), giving the player a lot more mobility.

I think these changes combined make the combat feel much more like an engaging "crimsonland" experience where you run around and fight biters, rather than the vanilla combat which is essentially "hold down button to spend iron and automatically kill enemies if your tech level > biter evolution". I'm personally having a lot of fun just fighting biters with my starter pistol with these settings.

I made many other changes (lots of them actually) but just as a summary:

4- I upped the range on most weapons, so combat usually happens at a more zoomed out level, at a slower / more strategic pace. Shotguns range to 22, Pistol/SMG to 30. Piercing bullets of both kinds travel faster, are more accurate (less spread), and have longer range. Spitters and worms also have increased range of course.

5- Tweaked a lot of flamethrower numbers to make it more deadly and a reasonable if risky alternative to the shotgun. It's also useful for stuff like clearing up trees to create paths. Mag size up to 200.

6- Rocket Launchers have very long range (40) and are meant to be used as worm killers (who also have more range). They also have much better starting velocity, much better damage, and feel more fun to use. Both rockets have splash damage. Regular rockets do 180 damage with a radius of 4, while explosive rockets do 120 damage with a radius of 10 (which is pretty large, actually good for thinning swarms but watch out for friendly fire!).

7- I also tried to change the turrets (inc. laser turrets) and spitters / worms to fire projectiles that you can dodge, instead of tracking "guided missile" bullets, but unfortunately the game engine doesn't support this. The turret / biter AI is programmed to only shoot as many bullets as necessary to kill a target, so they'll just fire, say, 5 bullets, assume they will all hit and kill the target, then if some of the bullets miss, the turret will just stop firing altogether and sit there stuck until you delete and re-place it. (same with spitters / worms). Would be great if there was an AI switch we modders can use that turns off this "overkill protection".

Anyway this is in essence a summary of the changes I made to make the combat a lot more enjoyable for myself. I don't mean to "tell you how it should be done", it's obviously just opinions and you may have a different vision in mind. But I'd really like to do anything I can to help make factorio into a better game, as I think it's already pretty amazing!
Obuw's Warfare - Combat improvements
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby Mylon » Sat Dec 31, 2016 11:56 pm

I just want to restate that the combat bonuses (increased bullet damage, increased turret damage, etc) should come from increased manufacturing rather than a one time cost. Tier 2+3 gun turrets, tier 2+3 laser turrets, possibly even combat modules to increase range, increase fire rate, or increased damage and decreased firing rate.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby bbgun06 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 5:50 pm

Here's something that hasn't been discussed much: Homing projectiles.
I think it's silly that spitters and worms always hit their targets. Drive full speed in a train past a worm and it gets hit every time.
Instead, allow the spitter/worm to lead the target a bit. So running in a straight line, the player will still take damage, but if he dodges left and right, he can avoid getting hit.

But the fundamental flaw with combat is this:
Balinor wrote:
I'm rather disappointed that after all this time a game about automation still does not have an automated way to destroy biters.

The fun part about this game is the puzzle aspect of designing systems to accomplish a goal. There's no combat puzzle, therefore it's no fun.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby aeros1 » Thu Jan 05, 2017 1:28 am

I dunno why you really want classic maze or tower defence game mode. Really not fitting and not helping in main game development and spreading the precious time. IT is usually unhealthy. As for base defence why not integrate it into main game, because combat now is really dull, and nothing wants to kill you.((well from what I've seen usually want but can't, but combat was postponed from my view so it is understandable.))
And working more on turrets and giving them interesting abilities and options would be as beneficial to main game, as extra enemies. And if you make custom scenario option, where you can limit spawns by enemy time or turn them off(good example of customization level of AI War from arcen games)) I am all for for ones who like base building over war.

So good base defence games I know:
Harvest:Massive encounter: First one is really close to your game... Infact factorio boiled down to basics. (Ok power greed in that game is more challanging and minimalistic, which gives thumbs up(Yes there are ways to accumulate,control and channel in that game. And it is main part of that game.)) But you would find really fascinating of how much you can do with just 1 Laser turret capable chainlink with other laser turrets into chains or deathstars, and three types missile launchers(Just 4 towers, plus power node overcharge as huge cheap aoe bomb on demand)

Infested planet: Really would like to see evolution of biters similar to infested planet from evolution factor or based on (type of pollution, resources, biome, player aggression). Base defence is just meh and it was not main part of game. But wouldn't it be fun to have enemies to act and try to change based on player actions and where they are. Especially if mod support would allow at least to add similar conditions(like add interaction with modded resource. Or new type of pollution or biome might change biter atributes or give some ability.)

Also development of combat would make it more attractive, more enemy types more fun defencetypes you might create. And who knows if custom ability creation for biters could be done it might open up quite a big support for new base defences, new production lines, and new vairried enemies), but even level of infested planet evolution variety would bring quite broad modding ground for new base defences.

Dig or Die: This one is primitive, but I enjoy progression there. You kill it during day, it comes to ruin your party during night. Also base defences are mostly basic(stationary turret, mine, omnidirectional turret, mines, spikes), and game has only small semblance of factorio. But enemy viriety is really large, yes some of enemies just reskins of previous but there are still lots of enemy types even though they all function under asumption, bite through earth till I get to your soft body.

(remembered name "NetStorm: Islands At War")One multiplayer, game that has my memory to slip away(really game was released in 1991 or earlier, so it is hard to rememnber name, I hardly remembered name of "harvest: massive encounter" game.) It was tetris like tower wars on sky islands. There were basic omnidirectional turrets, walls, attacker, but once you got your class you got few more options but in more limited firing arks(front only, four sides, or forward arc) and some interesting walls. So playing with weapon arks really could enchance factorio too provided biters manage to find path of least resistance in that firing labirinth (and get a way to bypass one way or another your turret limitations, to prevent I build only basic turret because it shoots everywhere) situation. Also liked that that game had no useless defences, or turrets.
Last edited by aeros1 on Thu Jan 05, 2017 5:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby DaveKap » Thu Jan 05, 2017 9:19 am

Klonan wrote:https://www.factorio.com/blog/post/fff-169

Hey Klonan, I hope you're still reading replies here because there's a multiplayer mode I'd really love to see added to Factorio. I think as is, Factorio isn't really built for proper multiplayer gaming outside of the mega-factory co-op mode we have now. My idea is a factory vs factory mode that uses a gladitorial proxy arena to fight other players.
viewtopic.php?f=33&t=31455
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby Klonan » Thu Jan 05, 2017 1:10 pm

DaveKap wrote:
Klonan wrote:https://www.factorio.com/blog/post/fff-169

Hey Klonan, I hope you're still reading replies here because there's a multiplayer mode I'd really love to see added to Factorio. I think as is, Factorio isn't really built for proper multiplayer gaming outside of the mega-factory co-op mode we have now. My idea is a factory vs factory mode that uses a gladitorial proxy arena to fight other players.
viewtopic.php?f=33&t=31455


I read everything along all the subforums :)
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby RMJ » Wed Jan 18, 2017 5:18 pm

The solution to turret creep. Instead of just removing it or preventing it outright.

would be to have the aliens have a form of creep, like zerg from starcraft. that prevents building on it. So that way you could only turret creep to the edge of their space, and then would have to drive in via tank, car or go on foot.

Besides that, it would make aliens look and feel more scary, that now you are entering their domain.

And you could have the aliens evolve themselves, so that if you start building turrets and creeping in. they would counter with their own defences.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby aeros1 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:12 pm

RMJ wrote:The solution to turret creep. Instead of just removing it or preventing it outright.

would be to have the aliens have a form of creep, like zerg from starcraft. that prevents building on it. So that way you could only turret creep to the edge of their space, and then would have to drive in via tank, car or go on foot.

Besides that, it would make aliens look and feel more scary, that now you are entering their domain.

And you could have the aliens evolve themselves, so that if you start building turrets and creeping in. they would counter with their own defences.


Creep is the way but not really original. Though if really turret creeping is something that bothers, I'd say make defence structure that spawns turret resistant defenders that can only live in that structure, but outside die quickly, debuffing turrets(eating ammo, draining energy, corroding aim, and hp) Different defences might allow disallow or completely prevent turret creep. Actually infested planet has pretty good turret creep solutions in respect, one time it works other time it stops working and you clearly would know when.

P.s. In infested planet it achived through evolution. Turret range(aka worms in factorio), acidic spit, Deffenders mutations (first two makes turrets hader to use, or more affected by swarm defences) And second changes turrets aka worms to mobile pretty strong defenders capable storming your too close fortifications. Also hive spreading in factorion is sorta random, but in there has pretty interesting way(Even if it is minor submutation and those hives not really as strong as original on capture points.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby Mylon » Sun Jan 22, 2017 1:50 pm

I couldn't wait for your survival wave mode, so I made my own:

https://mods.factorio.com/mods/Mylon/Hardcore_Survival
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby vanatteveldt » Thu Jan 26, 2017 3:58 am

Maybe this has been said, but is there any news on modular slots for tanks and trains being available in vanilla .15? I seem to remember some mods allowing it, I'm asking about the base game...
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby jimjim » Thu Jan 26, 2017 2:52 pm

I think a good solution to turret creep would be to have nests act as artillery when more highly evolved (and when I say artillery I mean an epic directed fountain of acid). This would mean turret creep is still viable early on, but later you would need to explore alternatives as you can't reliably build close to nests. In this way you could still use turrets to create a safe zone just out of range of the nest artillery, then run close to nests and out again to bait the mobile units into turret range (for those who still want to use turrets).
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby addedjeenie » Tue Apr 18, 2017 5:36 pm

Turret Creep:

- I used it as my only tactic. If you remove it, make sure the player has other viable options.

- To prevent it you could make the ammo capacity much smaller so that the player has to built belts to each turret. (factorio-esque)

- Alternatively, the worm colony could just back off far enough to avoid the turret, so that the player would have to at least build turrets all around the enemy.

- Alternatively, it could be much more expensive.

- Alternatively, an improved A.I., e.g. searching a path to the player avatar which avoids the turrets.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby Deadly-Bagel » Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:56 am

- I used it as my only tactic. If you remove it, make sure the player has other viable options. - They pretty much said here they're going to fix everything else instead of breaking the only working technique.

- To prevent it you could make the ammo capacity much smaller so that the player has to built belts to each turret. (factorio-esque) - You already need to do this, gun turrets chew through ammo like crazy at higher research levels.

- Alternatively, the worm colony could just back off far enough to avoid the turret, so that the player would have to at least build turrets all around the enemy. - This would involve a fair amount of processing power, impacting everyone.

- Alternatively, it could be much more expensive. - How would you make turret creeping expensive, but not a wall around your base?

- Alternatively, an improved A.I., e.g. searching a path to the player avatar which avoids the turrets. - Again, this would heavily impact performance.

The general consensus and the conclusion that I think the devs reached is that turret creeping is not the problem - why would it be a problem that we have a strategy for taking out nests? The problem is that there aren't any other strategies. Regular armour just isn't strong enough to protect you from any sort of worms, and even small spitters will eventually wear you down. I think once you hit medium biters / spitters you lose the ability to just run in until you come back with MK2 Power Armour.

I don't care if you turret creep and you don't care if I turret creep, what we don't like is that we're often forced into the strategy and it's boring. Yey let's run a hundred power lines out into the middle of nowhere and put a bunch of turrets down.

Rebalancing weapons and hopefully reworking the way nests react to attacks will render turret creep obsolete, it'll still be viable but one of the more tedious strategies so it should see less use.
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Re: Friday Facts #169 - Combat revisit 2

Postby Cribbit » Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:39 pm

I think a power up time for all turrets is a fair, valid and "best" solution. It allows for an outpost to still be set up if you want turrets to give you cover during an assault without being gimmicky.

I also think that worms should leave behind acid patches, like how flamethrowers leave flame. This helps them take out buildings quickly and makes combat for assaulting bases distinctly different than combat in open field.
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