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[XCE Only] Kabill's Tactical Armouries

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IMPORTANT NOTE: This mod has been released for playtesting. Content-wise it is 100% complete and there are no game-breaking bugs that I am aware of. However, there may be some minor issues with parts of the tech-tree and there will be some balancing work to be done. As such, do not use this mod if you cannot tolerate some minor problems.

Overview:

Tactical armouries is a GC overhaul. It revamps the weapon tech-trees by revising existing weapons, adding a few extra ones such that each tier has unique strengths. It also makes some important changes to ground combat more generally, the most significant being extended sight and engagement ranges (from 18 tiles to 24 tiles) and an elongated short-range distance (from 5 tiles to 12). There are also some changes to to the geoscape too, specifically in how 'unlimited' items like aircraft and vehicle weapons are accessed - rather than unlocking immediately after the requisite tech is completed, you must also complete a manufacturing project.

Link:

Kabill's Tactical Armouries v1.0

Features:

This list is probably not complete, as it's a while since I started making this mod so might miss some details. But anyway:

- Revised weapon tech-trees: Each weapon tier has its own strengths, resulting in asymmetric weapon upgrades. The ballistic tier is basically the same as vanilla with a broad spread of different capabilities. Laser weapons are comparably more accurate and have high damage values but lack automatic fire, making them strong in long-range engagements but less strong in close-quarters. MAG weapons (which now occupy the third tier) have comparable levels of damage to ballistic weapons but an enhanced rate of fire when bursts are used and have good armour penetration making them effective against armoured targets. Finally, plasma weapons have very high damage but low ammunition counts and only limited burst-fire options.

- Armoured aliens: Rather than higher-tier aliens getting large bonuses to HP, they now get only moderate HP buffs but instead gain increasingly more effective armour. Caesans, Sebillians and Wraiths are lightly armoured, Harridans moderately armoured and Androns, Drones and Praetors heavily armoured.

- Revised alien stats: more generally, alien stats have been revised somewhat to factor in armour changes. Overall there have not been large changes to most races but Androns are generally less strong than they used to be as a result of their very high armour values. I've also changed some of the AI values to, for example, encourage aliens to use higher ground more often.

- Combat ranges: units have a sight range of 24 tiles rather than the vanilla 18 tiles and weapon ranges have been adjusted accordingly. Furthermore, short range bonuses start to apply at 12 tiles rather than the vanilla 5, gaining +4 to hit for every tile within that distance.

- Suppression: Weapons can now suppress beyond their maximum effective range, although their effectiveness doing so is reduced the further beyond range you are shooting (like accuracy drop-off). Furthermore, armour no longer subtracts its value from suppression damage done but instead reduces it by a proportion. For example, previously Jackal armour reduced suppression damage by 25 points; now it reduces suppression damage by 25% instead. This allows for smoother suppression values and allows heavily armoured soldiers/aliens to actually be suppressed.

- TU costs: TU costs for crouching and for moving items in the inventory screen have all be revised upwards. This has been primarily to discourage weapon-swapping and/or to encourage forward planning with in-hand items.

- Grenade costs: the cost of throwing a grenade when a soldier has a two-handed weapon in hand is a fair amount higher. As much, most soldiers can only move a few tiles and throw a grenade. This is to encourage pistol use as this penalty is not applied when a soldier has a free hand. Dedicated grenadiers are now therefore a thing.

- Smaller pistols: On a related note, pistols are no longer enormous hand-cannons, occupying a 2x1 space in a soldier's inventory rather than a 3x2 space. It is now therefore possible to carry a sidearm without filling a soldier's entire belt.

- Revised carrying capacity: Soldier's max carrying weight is down significantly from vanilla. This is to encourage a greater level of discretion when equipping soldiers and to produce meaningful consequences for loading weaker soldiers with heavy armour and weapons beyond their inability to carry as many grenades. Accordingly, the mod reverts a recent XCE change that applied the overburden penalty after calculating TUs needed to shoot rather than after.

- Heavier shields: Relatedly, combat shields now weight something in the region of what they weigh in real life and therefore will burden most soldiers at least slightly unless they carry very little else. Assault shields, however, have the advantage of being a lot lighter.

- Making 'unlimited' items: All items which became unlimited when unlocked in the vanilla game now require a manufacturing project to be completed before doing so. Some (vehicle weapons and aircraft cannons) are manufactured individually, although my feeling on this is that it's not well balanced and I am thinking of possibly revising it.

- Manufacturing resources: All weapons now require alien power cells to manufacture. Alien power cells are the ammo clips used by aliens during ground combat. To support this change, alien weapons no longer sell for anything: in lore, these weapons are stripped for parts to be used in manufacturing projects and this is represented by the number of power cells in store. You therefore have full control over whether you keep cells for making into weapons or whether you sell them for cash instead. Note that there are other resource costs for weapons as well - generally alloy costs are down (but up on some projects for balance) and some items require alenium as well.

- Manufacturing for profit: weapons can be built and sold for a cash profit. It's a disputed topic, but so far as I am concerned if you have the resources to waste building things for sale then why not.

- Revised soldier stats: Soldier stats generally start a little higher (between 40 and 70) but are capped as a maximum of 80 (so no more super soldiers). This makes soldier losses less painful and veterans less overwhelming (if you get any - I have yet to see a maxed-out soldier!). Also, TUs only increase 1 point per mission rather than 2; TUs are good and don't need double-speed progression.

- Revised wounds and healing: Mortal wounds now do only one damage per turn but are more likely to occur. Furthermore, the healing limit of medikits and advanced medikits has been cut to 10 for basic and 25 for advanced. This is to make medikits, especially advanced medikits, more valuable.

- Predator Overhaul: Predator armour no longer uses conventional Xenonaut heavy weapons but has it's own set of super-heavy weapons at each tier. These super-heavy weapons cannot be reloaded in the field. Accordingly, it is possible to equip a predator weapon on each arm, albeit with a small movement penalty. This also allows you to mix weapon types, for example, by equipping a twin-linked laser cannon as a primary weapon but also equipping a rocket launcher for AoE attacks.

- Armoured Assault: This mod also includes all the changes in my Armoured Assault mod, adjusted in line with the changes in this mod. So basically, better or distinct vehicles with a range of different weapons that can be equipped. Still no secondary weapons, sorry.

I think that's it.

Compatibility:

This mod is compatible with all my other mods and has provision built in to ensure that it works with Cybernetic Armour and Fire in the Hole. As the mod includes Armoured Assault already, however, do not use that mod with this.

Feedback Requests:

I'm releasing this mod for playtesting. Therefore, I would appreciate any comments or feedback people have. From my initial playtest a few months ago, my impression was that the game was somewhat harder than vanilla but it's been so long since I played vanilla that it might be the base game and I didn't realise. I'm also playing with loads of other mods so there might be some interaction. So other people's comments would be helpful.

Things I especially would like comments on:

- Weapon balance (both within and between tiers);

- Economy balance (especially with the changes to 'unlimited' items);

- Does the tech-tree make sense (I don't think it quite does at the moment but I'd be interested to see what other people think);

- Alien stats (especially armour and AI);

- And anything else!

Lastly, apologies that the information here is a bit messy. If you have any questions (e.g. weapon stats) just ask. At some point I'll rewrite all this to get it more coherent but I'm hoping this will do for now.

Acknowledgements:

The mod uses Lt Parsons' True Laser Beam mod for laser weapons. It also uses some images someone else made for laser weapons but I can't for the life of me remember who or find the page where they were posted. If anyone recognizes them and can help me out there, I'd much appreciate it! (Otherwise I'll have a more detailed look at some point in the future).

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This looks really promising! I ran into wall with the earlier Extended Armories update, stuck between releasing just a version of your mod with all the bugfixes or a more modified one with my own weapon stat tweaks I was never completely happy with in the end. I might as well abandon that one and put all that time into more productive use playtesting this mod.

Some very quick early nitpicks:

- the rifleman loadout at the moment comes with a ballistic carbine (weapon.rifle in your mod) + 2 x ballistic rifle clips (ammo.ballistic.rifle) when using the vanilla loadouts.xml.

- maybe it was just a temporary solution, but since I noticed you also updated the xenopedia image: I think using the different m16 sprites for both the carbine and the rifle is not the best idea, since it's hard to visually tell them apart. Khall's solution to use the AK47 for the ballistic rifle is much better, and puts all those AK wielding unit sprites already in the vanilla game (and your Armour assets, too) into actual use.

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This looks really promising! I ran into wall with the earlier Extended Armories update, stuck between releasing just a version of your mod with all the bugfixes or a more modified one with my own weapon stat tweaks I was never completely happy with in the end. I might as well abandon that one and put all that time into more productive use playtesting this mod.
Well well, and here's me just about to start a new game! I'll let you know how it goes.

Appreciated, thanks!

- the rifleman loadout at the moment comes with a ballistic carbine (weapon.rifle in your mod) + 2 x ballistic rifle clips (ammo.ballistic.rifle) when using the vanilla loadouts.xml.

Ugh, yes. I completely forgot about starting loadouts. Will sort that out for final release.

- maybe it was just a temporary solution, but since I noticed you also updated the xenopedia image: I think using the different m16 sprites for both the carbine and the rifle is not the best idea, since it's hard to visually tell them apart. Khall's solution to use the AK47 for the ballistic rifle is much better, and puts all those AK wielding unit sprites already in the vanilla game (and your Armour assets, too) into actual use.

I suspect you'd probably get used to the two images when you've played for a while. Certainly I don't have any trouble telling them apart. However, the only reason I have for not using the AK47 is that I'm not personally a fan of it. But that's not really a good reason for not using it and it would certainly be helpful to have more clearly distinct ammo clips and unit sprites. So I think I'll make that change for the final version.

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Did a couple of early scout missions against caesans, and liking it so far. The extra sight range seems to have positive effect of drawing more foes, including the passive AI ones into firefights giving the the impression that you're fighting against a team, not zeroing on individual aliens. Kicks up the difficulty too in a positive way.

One thing I noticed was really weird damage flunctuation. For example I was getting precision rifle hits with measly 10 or so dmg, and a caesan guard was one-shotting my high resilence xenonaut with almost 100 dmg. I'm also pretty sure one of my shielders got one shotted from his protected side, though I can't remember if his shield was already damaged. I checked the mod files afterwards and noticed you've changed the DamageRandomChange from config.xml to 67. Not completely sure how this work, does it mean that the random flunctuation is now 33%-167% instead of 50%-150%? If so and it's not an oversight, I'm not sure that's really necessary. Especially in Insane difficulty usually every shot counts and if you're lucky enough to get enough hits in but they end up doing pea-shooter damage, that might end up being really frustrating especially when fighting the more difficult aliens.

Btw, one more thing about about making the carbine a bit more distinct: I edited an unique sound set for the carbine from the unused game sound files when using your Extended Armories mod. I could upload it, and if you find it fitting you could add it to this mod.

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One thing I noticed was really weird damage flunctuation. For example I was getting precision rifle hits with measly 10 or so dmg, and a caesan guard was one-shotting my high resilence xenonaut with almost 100 dmg. I'm also pretty sure one of my shielders got one shotted from his protected side, though I can't remember if his shield was already damaged. I checked the mod files afterwards and noticed you've changed the DamageRandomChange from config.xml to 67. Not completely sure how this work, does it mean that the random flunctuation is now 33%-167% instead of 50%-150%? If so and it's not an oversight, I'm not sure that's really necessary. Especially in Insane difficulty usually every shot counts and if you're lucky enough to get enough hits in but they end up doing pea-shooter damage, that might end up being really frustrating especially when fighting the more difficult aliens.

Yeah, I forgot to indicate that in the OP and your interpretation of the files is correct.

There's two reasons why I have increased it. Firstly, I (unlike everyone else, apparently) have a strong fondness for more damage randomisation. I think it might be a verisimilitude thing: real bullets vary considerably in their effects depending on where they hit.

But secondly, it's also important regarding armour. More damage randomisation allows for unusually high-damage attacks which are effective against armoured targets, while less damage randomisation makes this less of a feature. While that might seem like it's primarily a disadvantage, given that aliens now make extensive use of armour as well so it works both ways.

In other words, it hasn't been changed arbitrarily and it's not something that I'm inclined to change. That said, I've been testing the mod on Veteran rather than Insane so I don't know what it's like in that context.

(If it was possible, I'd be happy with a roll-twice-take-mean system for damage so that spikes are possible but less likely. But it isn't.)

Btw, one more thing about about making the carbine a bit more distinct: I edited an unique sound set for the carbine from the unused game sound files when using your Extended Armories mod. I could upload it, and if you find it fitting you could add it to this mod.

Ooo! Yes please :)

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Here's the set, edited from riflesingle.ogg from the original files:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/b6jxofxbfbqp0q5/weapon_carbine1.7z?dl=0

Considering the damage flunctuation, I pretty much agree with your rationale and like the randomness. What I was implying was that the original +/- 50% range was a decent enough variation. Though the fact that you've made the exact damage points dealt visible on Insane might have also had an effect to my impression, so a knee-jerk reaction is a possibility :)

I'll try to come up with more feedback when I've had time to play a bit farther.

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I don't like the games damage randomness. Yeah maybe a 25 or 20 is fine but I wish there is a critical chances too.

With a pistol maybe it's ok to have that much randomness but for example with sniper rifle even it hits your non vital places in your body you really get hurt or can't fight anymore. So if a 100 dmg sniper hit got a chance to deal 20 damage, it cause problems. Both realism and tactics. Missing shot is an option but very low damage at hit is problem. I think so at least.

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Here's the set, edited from riflesingle.ogg from the original files:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/b6jxofxbfbqp0q5/weapon_carbine1.7z?dl=0

Considering the damage flunctuation, I pretty much agree with your rationale and like the randomness. What I was implying was that the original +/- 50% range was a decent enough variation. Though the fact that you've made the exact damage points dealt visible on Insane might have also had an effect to my impression, so a knee-jerk reaction is a possibility :)

I'll try to come up with more feedback when I've had time to play a bit farther.

Thanks for that. Regarding damage numbers, I don't think it was intentional that they display on Insane. It's possible I changed it in case I wanted to test at that difficulty level (I like the numbers to display when testing mods in case of issues that would otherwise) but otherwise I'd have thought I'd have left it alone. So if you'd prefer to play with them off it won't be breaking anything I've done by design.

I don't like the games damage randomness. Yeah maybe a 25 or 20 is fine but I wish there is a critical chances too.

With a pistol maybe it's ok to have that much randomness but for example with sniper rifle even it hits your non vital places in your body you really get hurt or can't fight anymore. So if a 100 dmg sniper hit got a chance to deal 20 damage, it cause problems. Both realism and tactics. Missing shot is an option but very low damage at hit is problem. I think so at least.

I'd argue that greater stopping power of a sniper rifle is reflected in its high damage which therefore makes it more likely to score high-damage hit; nevertheless it's not impossible that a powerful weapon will hit a non-vital area or otherwise cause less-than-disabling damage. As written above, I would prefer a tends-to-centre system rather than the full range being equally likely. A hit/crit system would work as well. But in the absence of these a high damage range feels more 'realistic' to me than a low damage range system.

In terms of tactics, it's worth noting that high damage randomisation doesn't mean more random outcomes at the expense of less tactical planning; it just means that you need to factor in the chance of low-damage hits into your tactics. In other words, it means you need to plan for overkill in situations where a target must die, so that if you get bad damage rolls you've got a back-up solution.

(I'll be honest, though: the main reason why I like higher damage randomisation is threat. If I know, for certain, that a soldier is sufficiently armoured that it is impossible for them to be killed in a single shot, the game loses a lot of its tension since I know I'm in little immediate danger. In contrast, if one-shot kills are always a possibility (even if it is fairly unlikely), it's always necessary to be cautious and alert to danger, since there's never a moment when my soldier's are perfectly safe from harm. It's one of the things that still stands out for me from the original X-Com, hence why I'm likely to be stubborn on this point.)

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Different tastes make the game better.

I would like to edit the damage randomness at both side at least. För example -%75 +%150..

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I recently installed this mod, I like the new carbine although no information for any of the weapons seems to show up now so I am not exactly sure how it works other than being somewhere between the shotgun and rifle in terms of range.Rockets and C4 however I find pretty frustrating, Rockets from the both the launcher and the scout car have massively increased blast radii but severely reduced destructive power so they can't blow out walls to make entry points or to allow access through brush for the scout car and generally cause lots of friendly fire. The C4 has a massive blast radius but its kinda hard to carry and doesnt seem to break UFO walls so I don't use it that much.

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I recently installed this mod, I like the new carbine although no information for any of the weapons seems to show up now so I am not exactly sure how it works other than being somewhere between the shotgun and rifle in terms of range.Rockets and C4 however I find pretty frustrating, Rockets from the both the launcher and the scout car have massively increased blast radii but severely reduced destructive power so they can't blow out walls to make entry points or to allow access through brush for the scout car and generally cause lots of friendly fire. The C4 has a massive blast radius but its kinda hard to carry and doesnt seem to break UFO walls so I don't use it that much.

Thanks for comments.

Regarding the carbine, it's basically a smaller rifle: reduced damage and range but increased reaction modifier, so useful for scouts and during UFO assaults. Since I've not written this elsewhere, note as well that shotguns DO NOT have an increased reaction modifier (i.e. have x1.0 rather than x1.5) so in terms of reaction fire carbines are your best bet.

Regarding explosive weapons: they're not less powerful but their damage type has, on the most part, been changed from incendiary. This is to reflect the fact that things like fragmentation grenades are rockets are not at all suitable for destroying hard targets, therefore it doesn't make sense for them to have large damage bonuses vs. terrain features. One of the later explosive types does do incendiary damage, however, and I might extend that to another as well (currently its plasma explosives but I might give it back to alenium as well). So later weapons will be better suited for doing what it is you want to do with them.

Regarding C4, however, that shouldn't be any less powerful than it was (indeed, I think it should be more powerful). I'm not sure what UFO walls you're trying to use it on but if you're using it on external walls that won't work as their invulnerable.

In terms of blast radius, this is by design and the difficulty in using explosive weapons safely is intentional. I never liked how AoE weapons in vanilla have such small blast radii, since it renders them fairly indistinct from direct-fire weapons. The case in point here are grenades which in vanilla have a minute blast radius and therefore require a direct or practically direct hit, but rockets suffer from it too. So rather than them being powerful precision weapons I wanted them to be proper AoE weapons that can be used for indirect fire and attacking groups of clustered enemies. However, again, later rocket/grenade types have reduced AoE so are safer to use.

(Basically, the mod draws a distinction between anti-personnel and high-explosive ordinance. The former has large AoE but less armour penetrating capability; the latter has smaller AoE but is better against terrain/armour. You start with access to the former only but unlock the other through research.)

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That explains it, I was trying to use the C4 to blow open the front door of the UFO.

That should be possible. Although maybe you're using one of Fire in the Hole or Enhanced Crash Sites? If so, the UFO doors are significantly more durable than in vanilla which is probably why you're not having any success.

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That should be possible. Although maybe you're using one of Fire in the Hole or Enhanced Crash Sites? If so, the UFO doors are significantly more durable than in vanilla which is probably why you're not having any success.

Yeah I am using Fire in the hole along with pretty much every mod you have made :D. I like your stuff, and you seem to be the only one with weapon change mods other than magnumnauts.

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This really feels like playing Xcom Long war. I have had a bunch of squad wipes.

If it helps to have a benchmark - playing on Veteran I usually take 1-2 casualties on average per mission. There's some wide variation in that, though: sometimes I'll take none and sometimes can lose over half the squad. And yes, sometimes there'll be a fully wipe.

What's strange is that I don't know why. I never set out to make this mod harder than vanilla, even though it apparently is. I suspect they key thing is actually the sight range. As AndreiN said above, you tend to get into bigger firefights because of the longer sight range so engaging two, three or even four aliens at once isn't uncommon even with smaller UFOs. I think the extended short-range area also makes a difference in so far as I think the AI can benefit from it more than the short range bonus in vanilla (the player is likely to plan a close-assault better than the AI in general and won't just stop moving as soon as they have an 'acceptable' hit chance; with short range bonuses out longer the AI therefore tends to benefit from them more than would normally be the case). But other than that, I don't know.

Personally, mind, I'm not sure it's a bad thing. Being able to clear mission after mission with barely if any losses doesn't feel appropriate to the game. But it possibly makes the mod less accessible as well, which is a shame.

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If it helps to have a benchmark - playing on Veteran I usually take 1-2 casualties on average per mission. There's some wide variation in that, though: sometimes I'll take none and sometimes can lose over half the squad. And yes, sometimes there'll be a fully wipe.

What's strange is that I don't know why. I never set out to make this mod harder than vanilla, even though it apparently is. I suspect they key thing is actually the sight range. As AndreiN said above, you tend to get into bigger firefights because of the longer sight range so engaging two, three or even four aliens at once isn't uncommon even with smaller UFOs. I think the extended short-range area also makes a difference in so far as I think the AI can benefit from it more than the short range bonus in vanilla (the player is likely to plan a close-assault better than the AI in general and won't just stop moving as soon as they have an 'acceptable' hit chance; with short range bonuses out longer the AI therefore tends to benefit from them more than would normally be the case). But other than that, I don't know.

Personally, mind, I'm not sure it's a bad thing. Being able to clear mission after mission with barely if any losses doesn't feel appropriate to the game. But it possibly makes the mod less accessible as well, which is a shame.

What I notice is that Line of sight tends to become strange, for example I had an alien on a 3rd story building firing from beyond or the edge of the FOW, he was firing bursts of three and he killed 3 soldiers but the entire time despite having people in cover at the corner of a wall looking in the direction I could never see him so I thought he was on the ground.

Vehicle wise though I think the damage spread cancels out the changes from the armored assault mod because the alien drone can destroy armored cars in one or two bursts because most of the shots will resist while one or two will do 50-60 damage

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Definitely, the improved sight range and longer short range hit range make things much more tricky. Especially I'm having problems with assaulting sebillian ufos, since you have to get close to deal significant damage, in order to overwhelm their regeneration. I'm getting hit all the time even behind cover and I can't cover my advance with smoke. Also, they seem to be harder to suppress now, at least with flashbangs. Usually you need at least two to get one to hunker down.

Speaking of sebillian AI, btw, I don't really like how they are at the moment. They seem to have the exact same sight range as everybody else and usually prefer to stand passively at a long range and play the sniping game. Their high resilence + regeneration, and the fact that because of the more random damage flunctuation you shots are more unreliable, fighting them is a bit tedious unless you really invest in long range specialized arms, which is counterproductive in the end because you really need decent assault troops to effectively assault a crowded sebbie ufo afterwards (I'm playing with the Dynamic UFOs, of course). Also rushing towards your troops just fits their mad rampage lizards from space nature better, so I think at least their sight range should be dropped to a range of 18 or below .

Still just fighting against the initial scouts, no feedback on the GC changes yet. Sadly not much time to play lately.

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I think the AI changes makes the caesan blueshirts more stealthy/terroristic. They just hide in corners and behind desks even if you are shooting at other aliens nearby. Once you get close and pass their location, suddenly they pop out and you wonder why your soldiers are dying randomly. Turn around with your last two guys and theres one blueshirt standing in the corner of a room surrounded by 4 dead xenonauts.

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why don't carbines and rifles share the same magazine? assuming the carbine is infact based on the CAR-15, they both use 5.56 and take STANAG magazines. the magazine itself is just a recolor of the rifle magazine anyways

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I'm getting hit all the time even behind cover and I can't cover my advance with smoke.

That's one thing I have noticed: Sebillians seem to be more accurate at range than they should be. Might just be that I've fought a lot of Sebillians recently so don't have a point of comparison (seriously, in my current game I've had ~12 ground missions and all bar one have been Sebillians!). But I might look at reducing their accuracy or changing their AI a little.

Also, they seem to be harder to suppress now, at least with flashbangs. Usually you need at least two to get one to hunker down.

I don't think I made them any more difficult to suppress (though honestly I can't remember exactly). However, it's worth noting that weapons cause only half suppression damage when more than half their suppression radius away from the target (this is a completely invisible mechanic; I only know about it because I found it in the code a while back) which, with grenades now having the possibility of scattering, might be more likely to occur. It might also be an armour related thing, since armour interacts with suppression, but I don't think any of the aliens you will have fought yet will have had armour and in any case the flashbang should override it.

Speaking of sebillian AI, btw, I don't really like how they are at the moment. They seem to have the exact same sight range as everybody else and usually prefer to stand passively at a long range and play the sniping game.

Ironically, from a tactical perspective, anything which can regenerate quickly is much better suited to long-range engagements since it's much harder to wear down. So engaging at long range actually makes best use of their ability.

However, I'm open to the argument that this isn't necessarily very fun and I'm more than happy to look at the Sebillian AI to try and resolve that. Sight range definitely isn't a good solution, as the AI won't be able to deal very well with attacks outside of it's sight range. However, I might be able to encourage them to move closer to attack by increasing their minimum % hit chance for shooting or altering their engagement range.

I think the AI changes makes the caesan blueshirts more stealthy/terroristic. They just hide in corners and behind desks even if you are shooting at other aliens nearby. Once you get close and pass their location, suddenly they pop out and you wonder why your soldiers are dying randomly. Turn around with your last two guys and theres one blueshirt standing in the corner of a room surrounded by 4 dead xenonauts.

I think I possibly increased the weight to hidden/covered tiles so I'm glad to see this is working. As indicated above, I've only had one mission with Caesans on my current playthrough so haven't had much of a chance to see them in action.

why don't carbines and rifles share the same magazine? assuming the carbine is infact based on the CAR-15, they both use 5.56 and take STANAG magazines. the magazine itself is just a recolor of the rifle magazine anyways

In terms of the weapons' damage stats, the carbine and assault rifle use different caliber rounds (the carbine uses smaller pistol-caliber rounds while the rifle, obviously, uses rifle-caliber). The images are only like that because I was making use of existing graphical assets. It'll be less of an issue when I put a new version out as the assault rifle will be modeled by the AK47 instead.

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I switched back to XCE with several mods and It doesn't seem to be much of a difference health wise, the durability of aliens in this mod does not seem much higher because of the damage randomization. On the other hand I am really starting to miss having machineguns with 100 rounds. Vanilla 30 is silly.

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I switched back to XCE with several mods and It doesn't seem to be much of a difference health wise, the durability of aliens in this mod does not seem much higher because of the damage randomization. On the other hand I am really starting to miss having machineguns with 100 rounds. Vanilla 30 is silly.

In principle the durability of aliens should be roughly the same, it's just that with this mod its reflected by higher armour ratings rather than higher HP totals. So, from my perspective, that's actually a good thing as it means I've got the armour balance right.

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Ironically, from a tactical perspective, anything which can regenerate quickly is much better suited to long-range engagements since it's much harder to wear down. So engaging at long range actually makes best use of their ability.

However, I'm open to the argument that this isn't necessarily very fun and I'm more than happy to look at the Sebillian AI to try and resolve that. Sight range definitely isn't a good solution, as the AI won't be able to deal very well with attacks outside of it's sight range.

Alright, I was somehow under the impression that sebs had reduced sight range in original/xce but I checked the aiprops.xml and this is not the case. The thing is they're definitely much less aggressive when compared to basic xce 0.33 AI. As additional arguments apart from the tedium issue I mentioned, their current AI doesn't:

- make sebillian encounters offer enough tactical diversity from the other alien foot soldiers, caesans and androns. Now they're just a kind of mix of both aforementioned.

- correspond to their xenopaedia entry of them being physically intimidating, but dumb and short-sighted. Them utilizing their physique to the fullest when it comes to tactics is not very plausible. :D

I think it'd be actually fine to give them 20 or so extra resilence, if they'd in return behave more like berserk warriors going on frequent mad rampage charges towards your troops. I've zero experience tweaking the AI files though, so can't really come up with any constructive ideas how to achieve this.

Btw, I can verify mosshadow's observations of caesans being sneaky bastards. I've also been shot in the back from buildings I've considered a non-threat while advancing towards the alien UFO. Also the new AI works really well with the Hold the Line! mod, because I usually have more xenonauts engaged at the same time in firefights and getting 1-2 xenonauts suddenly paralyzed can drastically change the set-piece. Generally, they're really fun and challenging to fight against.

I don't think I made them any more difficult to suppress (though honestly I can't remember exactly). However, it's worth noting that weapons cause only half suppression damage when more than half their suppression radius away from the target (this is a completely invisible mechanic; I only know about it because I found it in the code a while back) which, with grenades now having the possibility of scattering, might be more likely to occur. It might also be an armour related thing, since armour interacts with suppression, but I don't think any of the aliens you will have fought yet will have had armour and in any case the flashbang should override it.

Actually, your mod should make sebillians more suspectible to suppression, since you've raised the suppressionMultiplier to 0.6 from 0.5 and the percentual armor decrease shouldn't indeed be the case here since I was talking about sebillian guards, which don't have any armor. Need to test that flashbang issue a bit more. I'm pretty they were landing right next to the sebs.

Edited by AndreiN
mixed up mod name (hold the line, not fire in the hole)

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