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Decoupling Air Combat and it's Financing

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Have pointed out several times that due to the amount of income/skillups from crash-sites, the optimum way to play the game is expanding your air power for as long as possible while mostly ignoring your ground troops. This rapid expansion of air-combat potential, and the discovery of exploitable quirks in the system (staggering fire from Foxtrots) has led to a lot of changes on the Dev's end that effectively make air combat "more difficult."

In the end, as long as there are more UFOs than we can shoot down, we will be rewarded for holding out as long as possible on giving gear to our soldiers while maximizing the number of craft that are shot down (unless a system is used where shooting down more UFOs results in a rapid advancement of the invasion as discussed in a previous thread).

As I see it, finances for the game break down into three basic areas:

1) Air Combat

2) Base Construction

3) Personnel and Equipment

Given that a single MIG back in the day would cost something like 11 million US$, it might be reasonable to split the finances for the air combat mini-game off, or at least the massive price difference would be my "out of game" reasoning for the split.

Couple ways this could be handled using the current infinite plane system.

1) Simple option: Planes are provided by the country bloc your base is in. Start of the game, the first are provides you with two Condors and a Charlie. If you lose one, they replace it after a while. If you want a supply of Foxtrots, your engineers and a certain amount of cash are invested to have the facilities built to provide that base in that country with Foxtrots. This leaves the balance of planes up to the player. After shooting X number of UFOs down for that country (or a certain funding level, or Rating) they will provide you with Four aircraft, etc.

Likewise if you want to upgrade to a Corsair. Costs could be kept the similar, or increased, but it would be a one time cost per base. New bases could be supplied with a set number of planes, and would increase separately based on the funding or rating of that bloc. [Possible exploit, placing two early bases both in the Russian bloc, perhaps it would be based on something else?]

2. Separate budget. At the end of the month you get X millions (25 or so?) to spend on aircraft, and a regular budget that is supplemented by crash sites for base expansion and equipping troops. A similar split could be implemented for purchases of base locations, or for the first months, the monthly budget would so far outstrip cash earned from crash sites that it is the only practical way to purchase a new base location.

OG: The increasing number of ships in Superhuman mode etc actually made those games EASIER financially, although more difficult in ground combat. That allowed rapid expansion and tech research, speeding up the game overall. At the moment we are already playing on a Superhuman-esque difficulty due to the waves and overwhelming invasion ideal.

Obvious downside, you are reducing the player's choices on how to spend their money. Generally people will dislike a reduction in their options.

Upside- Devs can now play with the air combat system and tweak it to a far greater degree without unduly influencing what is being spent on ground combat. Similarly, you can encourage people to actually spend their cash on equipping their troops with new gear rather than waiting as long as possible with ballistics and clothes.

I don't actually expect this to be implemented at this point, but if the idea gets picked up by a similar game down the line, I think it might make the development a bit easier.

Thoughts comments bashing?

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