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Topics - Specialist290

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Offtopic / Other Free Games?
« on: March 31, 2010, 10:18:53 pm »
Figured I'd kick off a little discussion here...

So, besides UFO:  Alien Invasion, what other free (whether freeware, open-source, etc.) games does everyone enjoy?  I'll start off things by listing a few of my own:

Dwarf Fortress:  Odd city management / roguelike mashup that's insanely complex.  I've never actually played a "full" game as such, but I certainly appreciate the attention to detail that goes into the game.

Warning Forever:  Japanese arcade-style "bullet hell" shoot 'em up.  You fight an endless sequence of bosses that adapt to your strategy.

Oolite:  Open-source remake of the classic space sim Elite.  Has about a thousand expansion packs you can add to add new ships, missions, and even star systems.  Really friendly community, too.

Anybody else got any recommendations?

Feature Requests / Ability to Rotate Multiblock Buildings
« on: March 31, 2010, 09:57:57 pm »
Here's one that recently came to me:  When you're placing buildings that cover two blocks, you should have the option to choose whether you want to place them horizontally or vertically.  I was recently doing some base building, and I was a little annoyed that I technically still had plenty of space for a certain building, but I couldn't actually build it because the two blocks were oriented north-south, not east-west.

Again, as with most of my suggestions, it's not a critical thing, just a small change I'm sure a lot of people would appreciate.

Discussion / A Bit of Free Advertising
« on: March 30, 2010, 05:57:56 am »
Starting fairly recently (a few weeks ago), I've been doing a Let's Play of the v2.3 build on YouTube (the link to the first video can be found here).  The video has a link to the main site in the infobox.  I'm hoping that it'll draw some more attention to the project for you guys, particularly from people willing to contribute their own resources.

I'm not an expert coder, musician, or artist, but I want you guys to know that I'm doing my part in my own special way.  Plus I'd appreciate it if y'all could pop over and give it a look ;)  (I'm open to critiques and suggestions for strategy / tactics.)

Feature Requests / Better Interface for the Transfer Screen
« on: March 19, 2010, 06:40:24 am »
I recently had this thought while transferring personnel and equipment from one base to another:  You should add a context-sensitive helpful display for the base being transferred to.

For instance, when the Equipment tab is selected, the screen would show the current capacity and inventory of the destination base; when the Employees tab is selected, the total / remaining capacity of the destination as well as the stats of the selected soldier; for the Aircraft tab, the hangar capacity; etc.

Also, I think that the method of reassigning soldiers in particular should be looked at more closely.  The way the current system works, right now when I click on a soldier, it simply automatically assigns it to be transferred (if it isn't assigned to a vehicle) or warns me to unassign the soldier (if it is).  I think that selecting a soldier in the menu should allow the player to view the soldier's stats and current status (Assigned / Idle), and the player should be able to then choose whether or not to mark the soldier for transfer (which will automatically unassign it if the player chooses to approve the transfer).

As it stands now, I'm having to constantly shuffle through menus to check whether or not the destination already has what it needs, if the soldiers I'm assigning are wounded / already assigned, etc.  I believe that this sort of change would greatly simplify and streamline things.

Bugs prior to release 2.3 / r28412 - Base Defense Crash
« on: February 24, 2010, 06:03:13 am »
I'm running the game on Windows Vista using the r28412 build installed from Destructavator's .exe (here).

Here's what happens:

A UFO attacks my base.  I select "OK," and it takes me to an options list to allow me to kill aliens in holding tanks, etc.  I click through that w/o changing any options, and the game changes to the "Equip Soldiers" screen.  When I finish equipping my soldiers, I click the "Exit Screen" button.  Then the game crashes to desktop.

It's happened twice w/ the same save, so I can give that to you guys if you can recommend a good site to upload it to and tell me where it is on my HD.

Thanks in advance :)

Discussion / Geoscape Political Borders
« on: February 16, 2010, 03:45:06 pm »
This might be the wrong place to put this, but since it is a somewhat vaguely map-related topic:

I was taking a look at the countries' borders on the Geoscape recently, and I noticed a few things in particular that stand out as being a little odd about some of the choices as to why certain "modern-day" countries are lumped with the major powers that they are in the game.  I was able to rationalize a few of them away by drawing out some things from current events (I'm a bit of a history nut; I'm working on a history major in college), but there's still a few that bug me:

1.  Probably the most egregious:  Why is Malaysia split between Asia and Oceania, and particularly why in that particular way?  As it is, the mainland / peninsula is owned by Oceania, while the Borneo territory is owned by the Asian Republic.  One would think that the country would commit to one or the other as a whole, or if it did split it would be the other way around (especially since Oceania already controls Indonesia, which includes the rest of Borneo, while Asia controls the Thai half of the peninsula).

2.  Why is Cyprus part of the Middle Eastern Alliance when both Turkey and Greece are GEU members?  Both nations have heavily influenced the country (usually each playing against the other), and the population is predominantly Greek-speaking and Orthodox Christian, with a sizable Turkish Sunni minority.

3.  Regarding current CIS members as part of the Middle Eastern Alliance:  The Stans (Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, etc.) I can see as being pretty reasonable since they're all Muslim-majority nations (though I can't imagine Russia giving up its influence over them without a fight, or at least a lot of arm-twisting).  However, I'm particularly bothered by the cases of Georgia and Armenia, since again they're heavily Orthodox nations that have traditionally been under Russia's sphere of influence.  (Actually, I can see either or both as members of the GEU as well, though again I'm sure Russia wouldn't appreciate that very much.)

4.  Morocco, Tunisia, and Algeria are part of New Africa as it stands now.  I'd have been more likely to lump them in with the Middle East, to be honest (again, due to traditional and demographic links).

I'm not saying that these are necessarily high-priority, nor am I demanding that they be changed right away.  However, I would like to know what the logic behind some of them is.  

I apologize if I seem to be nitpicking too much; I like delving into the background of games I'm interested in, not just playing them :)

Discussion / My Compliments (Plus a Suggestion)
« on: February 15, 2010, 09:22:00 pm »
First off:  Awesome game :D

I recently come across this game from, of all places, TV Tropes.  I tried out the 2.2.1 build first, but found it to be a bit clunky, so I upgraded to 2.3 after browsing around the forums a bit.  Then I tried to register, but there was a little hiccup (involving me somehow sharing an IP address with a spambot); fortunately, that got ironed out pretty well.

I never was a veteran of the old X-COM / UFO games, but after finding some pretty compelling reads on the Let's Play! Archive, I was inspired to look for similar freeware games (I'm on a bit of a tight budget).  I followed a link I found elsewhere on the aforementioned TVTropes, and lo and behold, now I'm converted!  It runs a little slow on my comp sometimes (especially on the larger maps), but it's been pretty fun so far, although I haven't advanced very far in the plotline.

I do, however, have one suggestion:  When placing new installations, I think that it would be very helpful to include a radar "shadow" for any radar-capable installations.  I believe that that would take a lot of guesswork out of where to place them for max coverage of the most land surface with the fewest sites.  As it stands right now, it seems like the only way you can see the coverage is after the site is already built, which of course costs money.

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