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jamoecw

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About jamoecw

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  1. jamoecw

    Xenonauts 2 Development Overview

    basically it has simpler economy, less of a strategy layer, no research or combat vehicles, and a simplified damage model. relative to XCom of course. with all of that being said it had just as many variables that mattered as XCom. this means that the detail in what it encompassed was incredible, and that is what makes people say that it is complicated, and why jagged alliance 2 is considered as good as it is. it also has copious amounts of humor and a decent storyline (at least for the time). some people are fine with the complication that comes with the level of detail, and some are fine with the amount of complication as long as it isn't due to the level of detail. if you are the latter then it isn't the game for you. there have been a few attempts to remake JA2 and to simplify it to gather a wider audience, and they have all met with failure. there is a rather popular mod called 1.13 (sort of like a patch) which boosts the complexity a fair bit as well.
  2. this is very attractive on paper, but in real world terms it isn't that great. the M4/M203 is a good example (which you brought up). on paper you have a rifleman, that can flip a switch and have his weapon become a SMG, or switch his hands and it becomes a grenade launcher. if he needs to breach a door he simply has to do an ammo swap. same with launching a flare for night ops, or laying down a smoke screen. he can flip up a magnifier and get the use of a scoped weapon for long range shooting. sounds great right? well let us take the extra duties that are needed for each of those roles and stack them all on a single person, now that person is way overburdened. take all the little compromises you get from using a multitool instead of a dedicated tool and now every situation your guy is in he under performs. now add on all the extra training to get your guy able to do all of that as well, and now the 9 month long training course for basic competency for your rifleman is 19 months (6 months boot camp + 3 months basic infantry + 2 months grenade school + 4 months advanced marksmanship + 2 months SRF school + 2 months CQB school). the training cycle to keep his skills sharp goes from 1 week every year to 7 weeks (1 week basic weapons qualifications + 2 weeks ordinance maintenance refresher + 3 weeks abbreviated marksmanship course + 1 week CQB drills). logistically it looks better, however once you get into the details you still have issues in that the extra cost of the tool (M4 w/ M203 and advanced ACOG) is down with any problem on any part of it, which means that you add all the problems you would have together to get the casualty rate for the equipment. it doesn't sound very good now. given how the military (US) has added extra 'all hands' training in the form of sexual assault prevention training, equal opportunity training, etc. as well as the scaling back of personnel and the scaling up of peace time duties, that means that the extra time needed to keep things running smoothly with such a set up just isn't there. the army has figured that out and has been looking for a way to shift things to keep the army functional (if your guy makes a mistake casualties skyrocket), and the navy has been having a pretty strong wake up call to similar SOPs. i don't know how they will solve the problem, but one answer is to go back to dedicated tools instead of multitools (at least for the army, for the navy it isn't nearly as simple, not that it is a good option to begin with).
  3. you did great work with X1, so i am sure you'll do great with X2. based on my own experience i can say that carrying a backpack into battle is unrealistic. that being said only having a belt is also unrealistic. we mount holsters for battle equipment onto our armor, and use slings for our main weapons. US snipers today carry both a sniper rifle and a normal M4 (assault rifle), though when the bullets start flying they use the M4. when they go off to do sniper activities, they carry everything with them, then they set up with their sniper rifle in a place and hand their gear (M4 and backpack) off to their spotter. given how the soldiers deploy in Xenonauts they are closer to SWAT than soldiers, so backpacks would not make sense. all of that being said being able to mount the equipment onto your body for quick and easy access would be realistic. the amount one can strap to your body is more than most people think. when i deployed last i had a radio, 3 extra M4 - assualt rifle mags (30rnds each), 2 extra M9 - pistol mags (10rnds each), 1 IFAK - single person first aid kit, 1 PFD - life vest, 1 multitool, and a flashlight strapped to my body armor. i carried an M4, and an M9, the M9 was in a holster attached to my belt, the M4 on a sling. in my pockets i carried a lot of extra stuff, most non-battle related such as keys and wallet, but also job specific stuff as well. if i was in the army and a grunt i would have grenades on me as well, and odds are i'd have some sort of job specific thing like breaching compound or a larger manpack radio. comparing what i took with me that i could access in battle (not in my 3 day pack) was about the same equipment accessible via the backpack in X1. SWAT carries far less gear than soldiers, even after the soldiers drop their patrol packs (backpacks). they load out for that specific mission, with advanced knowledge of the terrain. basically the loadout screen would fit perfectly for having advanced access to the map. for tactical flexibility maybe have a slot for hands? so the sniper can carry a shotgun or something like that, then drop it and pull out their sniper rifle and set up. when the exfill they can holster their rifle and pick up their shotgun. this would also allow oversized equipment like shields or your fallen brothers (for taking them back to evac).
  4. jamoecw

    X-com: Apocalypse 2?

    XCOM:Apoc was far more ambitious than what was released. this is the reason i think for the more varied alien structure from previous games. there was going to be a whole espionage and economics side of things that got cut. there was a lot of really cool things in the game, though parts of the game failed in execution as well. a real mixed bag.few games wanted to go the turn based strategy route, so the opportunity to try and do what they did properly was never really on the table. would have been nice to play a polished version of it. there are plenty of other games that really hit it out of the park and simply need a revamp on their engine/graphics that would be lower hanging fruit to get some interest in those old classics, but if there ever was a rush for remaking the old games i would really hope that apoc gets it day. edit: to answer the OP questions - the aliens they had were pretty good, though the dichotomy of UFO:afterlight was nice as well creating different enemies that were very different from each other requiring rather different weapons and tactics. the vehicles being very modular is a keeper, as it really is perhaps the most unique thing about the gameplay. the more complex economy and diplomacy that cut cut would be another thing to get in there. as for the real time part of it, i'd either make the combat similar to the UFO games as it lends itself to pausable realtime very nicely, or ax it completely. who works on it isn't very important, as long as it is done well.
  5. i'm guessing the damage types will be moddable as well? i am not sure how useful it will be to the base game, but putting in kinetic and hardness damage types can give some realistic diversity to ballistic weapons. AP ammo doing more 'hardness' damage and less kinetic would help it to 'penetrate' certain armors and do less damage against less rigid armor. HP rounds would be the opposite of such relative to normal rounds. what about having damage dependent on what another damage type does to the armor, like HEAP ammo? so if a specific type of ammo does more of one type of damage then causes more damage of another type. something like 5 hardness+(dealt hardness*2 explosive)+2 kinetic against 40%hardness armor, 0% explosive armor, 0%kinetic armor would do 3 hardness damage (.6*5), 6 explosive damage (3*2*1.0), 2 kinetic damage. against 40%hardness armor, 50% explosive armor, 0%kinetic armor would do 3 hardness damage (.6*5), 3 explosive damage (3*2*.5), 2 kinetic damage. against 80%hardness armor, 0% explosive armor, 0%kinetic armor would do 1 hardness damage (.2*5), 2 explosive damage (1*2*1.0), 2 kinetic damage. it probably wouldn't help the base game too much as it would add some complexity to the game, and aside from maybe some poison darts, tazer, or particle stream weapons i don't see it as having much impact overall. it would be cool for modders though.
  6. as for 2 they had an XCOM clone that made it so that you had to be damaged by the reaper to become infected, and then it took a little bit of time. XCOM apocalypse had the damage tied to psi i think, so that if you had high psi defense you could defend against it (which none of the lower level armor had, so it was a late game thing, and not that great either). it really all depends on how valuable your guys are. in XCOM the first 2 guys that walk off your transport were pretty much dead, so losing 1 guy to bad luck while clearing a room isn't that big of a deal, but in firaxis's XCOM you have 4-6 guys during the mission and losing 1 of them was a major setback for the rest of the game, so losing 1 of them due to bad luck is a big deal.
  7. i think you hit the nail on the head. a kill sweep makes things easy if the strategy and lore are about killing the enemy. if things are a complex machine, then tweaking something may bring about a greater result than just trying to kill everything. once killing becomes not feasible or not desired things have to become more creative. the problem i see is that in traditional XCOM you are fending off an alien invasion, and thus trying to prevent your machine from getting tweaked rather than disrupting another's. so either the battlescape needs to become a small section of a larger battlefield in which reinforcements just keep coming (and thus killing won't work), or you need to do subterfuge (which is rather silly given how all the important bits of the enemy is out of reach in space). in apocalypse you were going to tweak the machine to undo damage the aliens did tweaking it, unless you were playing another faction, in which case you would be infiltrating and doing the initial tweaking. too bad it was cut short. though i am not sure it would still have the same feel if the main game was not going against aliens doing 'clean sweeps' for most of the game.
  8. no. the first two of the three XCOM original games had you bring 14 soldiers, more than X1. the third is a bit more complicated as the vehicles are modular in design, so the main transport has a default of 8 passenger space with the capability to have an additional 12, though cargo space is a separate module, so you probably want to only add an additional 8, until you need to start capturing aliens and then you'll swap out passenger space for a bio containment module, reducing the extra PAX to 4 (12 total). you can repurpose the transport into a heavy weapons platform as well when you don't need it to be a transporter. the new XCOM games are different enough to not really be in the same vein as the originals, in fact the third game wasn't considered to be a true sequel by die hard fans back in the day.
  9. the more i think about it the more it seems that killing everything would be the easiest way to complete a mission, unless there was some non-lore friendly arbitrary constraints. unless of course aliens can spawn on the map in the middle of a fight. that way you could have say a terror mission and instead of killing all the aliens and being done you would have to take a control room to get the city defenses back up to stop reinforcements, then clear out remaining forces or leave them for the local forces to deal with. you could have a rescue VIP mission in which every X number of turns more reinforcements come from off the map to stop you from getting to the VIP, so getting the VIP and getting out of there would be the only way to really win. there could be a mission in which you have to destroy a certain device, but since it is important aliens constantly reinforce the defenders and thus you have to fight your way to the device, and killing everything will just spawn more aliens. as for downed UFOs, the score at the end if you held the UFO instead of killing them penalized you for every living alien, if this wasn't a thing then it would make such just as viable. though getting rid of that score altogether would be a mistake as it rewarded you more for tougher missions, which is important.
  10. jamoecw

    Make both site playable

    i don't think too many people are old enough to have played xcom apocalypse back in the day, but this was the idea that they shot for. financial issues meant that everything but the xcom side had to be scrapped. the inner politics of the earth side made the xcom faction weaker than the aliens, and while the aliens had a good deal of resources, getting their forces to earth was a bit of an issue. the idea was that the aliens were inter dimensional aliens attack from a different dimension, so they had to only send a transport or two at a time, and they had to learn how to travel and operate in our dimension better in order to be a bigger threat. working with certain factions and corrupting others was how you were supposed to defeat xcom. of course xcom wasn't your only opponent as well, so you were outnumbered. in fact any faction you were going to play was going to be outnumbered, and have some sort of edge over the other factions. there is some talk that phoenix point (https://phoenixpoint.info/) is going to try and do that again (sort of) from the same creator.
  11. jamoecw

    Aimed shots to unseen enemies

    jagged alliance 2 (1.13 mod) did a bit, it wasn't a big difference so you probably didn't notice a difference. xcom and most remakes have done stuff with vision cones and light. as for gamey trade offs for scopes, there has been a few squad games (JA2 included) that have it take a bit longer to take a shot, for increased accuracy or range. as for why not equip everyone with scopes, the same could be asked as to why not cover the entire game with bases on day one? cost often times is used to limit things that seem really good. personally i prefer extra costs to far outlandish downsides to equipment in order to keep balance. but of course if the downside (what ever that is, cost or otherwise) is too great then their isn't much point in even having it in the game. in the end weapons are pretty gamey in all games. JA2 which models things closer to reality than most games still has pistols being about 1/4 of their range and rifles about 1/15 of their range to prevent pistols from being completely outclassed. in reality the draw time is a big factor in their usefulness (one reason they are popular for guard duty), as well as the deficiencies of the human element. a rifle can reach well out beyond what you can see, so scopes are a no brainer for any military, but they aren't used much due to the tunnel vision they cause and their problems at close range. all of this is coupled with durability in the field and maintenance of the device. iron sights are very reliable, while a scope needs some attention to ensure it stays zeroed in. training new shooters also have issues if they learn on a scope instead of learning on irons, and then learning to use a scope. they tend to time their shots to hit their target instead of learning to keep their sights on target, which results in greater inaccuracies as they get better (glass ceiling essentially), and their inability to handle things too far away or too close with a scope, in addition to not being able to use iron sights effectively. these issues are something people not only don't realize exist, but consider to be artificial feeling when simulated, and thus disliked. think of it like fatal injuries, in real life medieval weapons cause fatal injuries far more gently than modern weapons (little concussive shock to your system). this means that if you stab a person in the heart, he will die, but not for a minute or two. if you put that into a video game people would tend to dislike such stuff very much and call it fake. balancing reality with people's expectations is an art that is delicate, too much realism and people call it fake, not enough and people call it fake.
  12. that is pretty cool. back during X1 development i came up with an idea using local forces for air/radar cover and local ground forces to cordon off and help with the aliens on the ground. the underpinnings of this was a balance between developing for them to boost their capability to handle issues on their own, diverting resources from making your own team strong or to try and blanket the whole globe in coverage. it was amid the discussion about air cover ranges, and how realistic ranges would be much smaller than the original XCOM. i also talked about picking what sort of transport and thus what sort of deployment you wanted. using the traditional (for XCOM) VTOL method or to parachute in a little ways away and fight your way in towards the craft. the VTOL method means the aliens don't get to set up for your arrival, but it also means potentially charging into plasma getting out of the craft, and of course shorter transport ranges for your crack troops. paradrop of course means that the aliens know well ahead of time and can bring what ever big guns to bear (mortar equivalent) while you work your way to them and of course can hit you from range or set up ambushes. it also means more civilians dead and more reliance on local forces. ultimately the game turned out pretty good so i am happy that the idea wasn't picked up on (as doing it wrong could have ruined everything). i do like the idea of helping out existing forces to combat the aliens, as it just makes a lot of sense lore wise. it isn't like a single (or a couple of) AI trooper is going to help out all too much anyway (at least not consistently).
  13. jamoecw

    Grenades suggestion.

    i am not sure if prone is planned to be in the game or not, but maybe the reaction could be to go prone, assuming the people see the grenade. this would mean that going prone reduces damage to you from splash damage. if the enemy can just run away from a grenade due to reaction fire then tossing a nade into an enemy hole could have them running into the middle of your men bypassing their reaction fire. if your men react then there could be a lot of friendly fire in that case. having things move for reaction can be fidly to balance and get right, especially if it is AI controlled.
  14. jamoecw

    Cover and accuracy poll

    i don't get why you can't use LOS to figure % to hit. JA2 did it eventually, xcom did it as well. you just draw a line from the person firing to the person being fired on. you draw lines to the edges of the target (hit box). if the first line isn't blocked then you have a non-zero chance. if the area made by the other lines intersects with cover decrease to hit by a % based on cover. you could get complex by redrawing the lines to shrink the effective hit box so cover behind other cover doesn't count. this pretty much means that the dichotomy of a complex system without accurate numbers vs. a simple system that doesn't take into account obstructions is completely false. the calculations are already done for LOS so the rest isn't much different really. one could have objects operate like smoke in that they obstruct LOS but not provide cover, though this would still provide a decrease in % to hit chance. maybe even something as simple as the object operating as 50% effective for cover calculations (if you don't redraw for cover calculations). in the end not giving the % to hit would be a bad design IMO. you need to tell the player what is going on, any good team leader needs to be aware of the nuances of the situation at hand that don't show up on paper.
  15. xenonauts 1 had these, and weren't half bad in the early stages of the game. their AI wasn't that great obviously, but the national military NPCs would use the same ballistic weapons you used. i had a game in which a couple of soldiers pinned down the aliens in their ship, as they moved during the same turn the aliens did and thus would open up on them when the aliens opened their door to reinforce their guys outside. it kept the forces separated and allowed me to hit them in bite sized chunks and come out of that with no casualties to either my guys or the locals and in record time. of course as things scale up starting weapons and armor just doesn't cut it anymore and they become little more than old timey british cops with their whistles.
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