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Author Topic: New soldier stat increase system  (Read 42999 times)

Offline eleazar

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2008, 09:35:41 pm »
You often learn more from your mistakes than from your success. That would generally counter most attempts to eradiate XP by collateral damage or whatever incidents. I would suggest PHALANX guys are genrally tough and mentally stable guys and able to learn from things that messed up like every good soldier should do.

To be clear:  what i suggested is that wounds taken in combat can cancel out any gain the soldier might get to his "health" stat.  Or in a more cruel implementation actually lower the health stat.

It's not about "learning".  It's about the health of the soldier's body, which is always lower after being blown apart, then reassembled in a hospital.

Surrealistik

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #16 on: February 13, 2008, 08:39:25 am »
Power (strength) should have a role in determining melee damage, the range of equipment a soldier can use, the impact of armour encumberance, spread/recoil management of certain weapons, and the maximum distance of thrown objects. Increasing it would result from the participation of a soldier in activities immediately related to the concepts influenced by this attribute (throwing objects, moving while encumbered, etc...).

That said, health experience consequently, should stem from a combination of speed and power experience, and should be penalized for injuries suffered (penalties starting out small, but getting exponentially larger as injuries compound). If such injury is severe (50% or more of max health lost), all health experience for that mission is lost, and permanent health loss occurs, to an extent based on both the severity of the trooper's injuries, and the trooper's pre-reduction maximum health (people who are initially healthy to begin with tend to recover from lasting injury much better than those who are not).


Mind experience should also be derived from use of support equipment and gear (e.g. Medikit), and have an influence on the extent of their success and TU costs (in so far as I understand it as both an amalgum of both strength of will and intelligence). Mind experience should also be gained from successfully resisting panic or using/withstanding psionic attacks (when they are implimented).


Misses with weapons should be rewarded, initially granting smaller bonuses at lower experience levels relative to hits, and larger ones at higher experience levels relative to misses. This is because you tend to learn more from success as an inexperienced individual than you do as an expert. Success for the greenhorn, whether by skill or chance, often contains a wealth of lessons and common denominators that when throughly analyzed, can result in a quantum leap in understanding, as opposed to the much slower, iterative advance that comes through learning through failure, which tends to offer fewer valuable insights. The pro in the meanwhile, has a fairly intimate understanding of proper technique and approaches. He learns more through failure, because it typically highlights weaknesses in his robust methodology which can be acted upon to further improve it. Success by contrast teaches him little, emphasizing instead the value of what he already knows to be of worth.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2008, 08:43:36 am by Surrealistik »

SpaceWombat

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2008, 04:06:39 pm »
To be clear:  what i suggested is that wounds taken in combat can cancel out any gain the soldier might get to his "health" stat.  Or in a more cruel implementation actually lower the health stat.

It's not about "learning".  It's about the health of the soldier's body, which is always lower after being blown apart, then reassembled in a hospital.

Right to some degree. According to serious injuries I'm on your side (though this would not neccessarily influence "health XP" but merely influence health directly as you also meant I guess).
As I said already I would at least add a psychological component to "health" (pain tolerance...) because else it would not make much sense at all to be able to "train" health in combat (your body mass does not change, your stamina is trained through repeated training, not in mission performance...).

Do you disagree about a psychological component of "health"? If it's just physical I would suggest it is nearly fix because an already combat ready soldier is physical fit and will only decrease during combat and aging.

Offline BTAxis

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2008, 04:29:21 pm »
because else it would not make much sense at all to be able to "train" health in combat (your body mass does not change, your stamina is trained through repeated training, not in mission performance...).

One thing I would like to note is that in my opinion, simple rules are better than complicated ones. Why? Because the increase is so slow. Significant changes happen over the course of dozens of missions. The change from one single mission is barely noticeable. That makes it a issue of how the increase behaves averaged over a lot of missions, and THAT means individual fluctuations are smoothed out and become irrelevant (this is the same point I was trying to make when I replied to eleazar's comment about the mind stat). Add to that my note about it being easy to hit the XP cap every mission.

My aim was never to make an accurate model of how humans improve. It's a game mechanic. It's meant to provide for soldier growth as a result from missions in a non-exploitable way, nothing more, nothing less.

SpaceWombat

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2008, 04:38:50 pm »
One thing I would like to note is that in my opinion, simple rules are better than complicated ones. Why? Because the increase is so slow. Significant changes happen over the course of dozens of missions. The change from one single mission is barely noticeable. That makes it a issue of how the increase behaves averaged over a lot of missions, and THAT means individual fluctuations are smoothed out and become irrelevant (this is the same point I was trying to make when I replied to eleazar's comment about the mind stat). Add to that my note about it being easy to hit the XP cap every mission.

My aim was never to make an accurate model of how humans improve. It's a game mechanic. It's meant to provide for soldier growth as a result from missions in a non-exploitable way, nothing more, nothing less.

True. I understand your point and I agree that it should be simple. That's why I would think of a mental stability increase through combat xp (you can't train everything in base, you need a hot deployment to feel real pressure and learn to get over the stress) rather than a physical fitness thing -the latter thing should be dealt with by another game mechanic. Serious injuries could be reflected by a permanent decrease in health but that has nothing to do with the development of a soldier through xp as I think of it.
Health increase by mission XP (not sure if related to other XP gains). Probably permanent decrease according to injury handling (that will be updated anyway as I suggest with the medikit redesign). My point so far.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2008, 04:42:01 pm by SpaceWombat »

Offline tobbe

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #20 on: February 13, 2008, 05:38:53 pm »
I could agree to most of the "health reduction after being wounded"-positions due to their realism...but then:
Why do you guys want to make the game even more difficult? The power of alien weaponry increases during the game, you face tougher and more deadly aliens...and you are going to LOOSE health for barely surving an encounter...do this on some consectutive missions and you have no chance to save your hard built up 50-mission trooper, cause he has only 50 HP left and will almost die from any hit....NO FUN!

Even if you simply negate the health-xp for that mission, i dont like the GAME-MECHANISM behind it...my soldiers are supposed to become better, so that they might survive a hit from late-game superior alein weaponry...keep in mind that the missions are suposed to become more challenging as the campaign goes on. This might included more enemies, better weapons or something like this. You simply NEED these HPs to have a fair chance to survive, well a fair chance of not loosing a well built up soldier....

Conclusion: I would strongly dislike ANY penalty for being wounded, as this would force me to play even more perfect (missions without even being wounded)... For me, it is challenging enough to keep all your soliders alive during some missions, so i dont need any game mechanics to make this even harder...

Concerning Mind-increase: Regardless how this mechanism will be implemented, i think that mind HAS to improve BEFORE you actually need it. I remember one of the really old X-COMs when you got a PSI rating really late in the game...and i was really pissed off to realise that half of my elite squad was bound to be controlled due to their pityful PSI-rating...and I had to replace them. An experinced soldier should have a fair chance to deal with PSI-attacks, even if he started with a bad rating...

nemchenk

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2008, 07:11:23 pm »
My aim was never to make an accurate model of how humans improve. It's a game mechanic. It's meant to provide for soldier growth as a result from missions in a non-exploitable way, nothing more, nothing less.

BTAxis, if I may chip in here just for a second -- surely you would like it to be intuitive, or realistic, or whatever you want to call it, right? I mean, otherwise why not do D&D-style XP points, or magic crystals, or something else? Because, as I understand it, UFO:AI aims to avoid those kinds of gimmicks, right?

So, so long as it does not interfere with gameplay, it *should* model how humans learn, but in a simplified way. No?

On the actual proposed system, what I was suggesting was you would *gain* XP for being hit, not loose it. This way, vaterans of combat would have more XP, to illustrate the effect of coolness under fire etc. Health loss due to injury is surely already there (the guy has to spend time in hospital), unless you want this to act as a sort of push towards implants? "We can rebuild him, we have the technology!" ;)

nemchenk

Surrealistik

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #22 on: February 13, 2008, 07:12:32 pm »
Really, you shouldn't be getting hit in the first place, and I strongly believe in some form of disincentive for suffering injury in lieu of restricting troops from participating in missions (while recovering) which would be truly annoying. Perhaps permanent reductions could be eliminated or reduced according to difficulty level, but they should exist. Honestly. If you let your soldiers consistantly suffer major injuries (which are required for hp loss, so you can make some mistakes), you deserve to suffer for it.

Offline BTAxis

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #23 on: February 13, 2008, 07:15:33 pm »
BTAxis, if I may chip in here just for a second -- surely you would like it to be intuitive, or realistic, or whatever you want to call it, right? I mean, otherwise why not do D&D-style XP points, or magic crystals, or something else? Because, as I understand it, UFO:AI aims to avoid those kinds of gimmicks, right?

In principle yes.

However, with soldier stats, you get a nasty case of realism versus gameplay. Realistically, it makes no sense for soldiers to start off with such low stats. They're supposed to be elite soldiers. By all means, they should already have a ton of XP. But is that fun? No. What's fun is seeing your soldiers grow as the game progresses. You can't have it both. There is no compromise that isn't crap. So I decided to go full-on gameplay on this one.

Offline tobbe

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #24 on: February 13, 2008, 07:27:44 pm »
Perhaps permanent reductions could be eliminated or reduced according to difficulty level, but they should exist. Honestly. If you let your soldiers consistantly suffer major injuries (which are required for hp loss, so you can make some mistakes), you deserve to suffer for it.

For me its not about making mistakes. If you make something wrong, you deserve to be punished (gameplaywise). Agreed.

One thing i was trying to point out is, that suffering major injuries happens quite often in UFO:AI. It often takes only one hit to be close to death. Alien walks around a corner, fires its tachyon rifle once, hits and retreats, without taking any reaction fire...Even the best tactics cant pervent THAT. I agree to the fact, that getting wounded should have some effect, but for me rebalancing the medikit, and therefore causing the need for some time in hospital i ok for me...

One last thing: what is the real GAIN for gameplay/fun of changing BTAxis mechanism? It might be my own personal approach, but i dont really care how realistic a game is, as long it is fun to play.



ufogio

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #25 on: February 13, 2008, 07:30:01 pm »
Hi!!
Thank you for this beautiful game... I'm a great fan of ufoai, I am playing it since the 2.0 realease.

I've just finished a campaign at difficult level and I think the stats increase system works well.
My most experienced soldiers have faced about 50 different missions; one of them arrived at mind score of 76 before being killed.
The characteristic that is increased the most is mind: you get more or less 1 point of it every mission.
Accuracy also grows, but slowly: after finishing the game, a sniper can get up to 10-15 points of accuracy if you keep sending him in every mission.
Speed is really difficult to increase: I'm not sure, but the veteran soldiers gained 1 or 2 points of speed at the end of the game.
The weapon skills also get increased: more or less, you get a point for every kill with a certain weapon.
It is ok that accuracy and speed grow slower than mind, because I believe that at a certain point you will implement some mechanism to 'train' soldiers, and while you can easily increase your speed and accuracy by training, it is not the same for mind.

I have only a few points to make:
- stats don't increase if you automatically finish missions.
- I have a soldier which I use as an 'explorer'.
He carries only a pistol and a medikit, and I use him to discover where the aliens were hiding while the others soldiers cover him.
Well... after 50 missions, he didn't increase his speed stat, even if he was the one which has run the most. Maybe you should add a bonus to the experience score when a soldier discover an alien, and when he uses a medikit.
- I don't really understand what the mind attribute is for... before reading this post, I believed it was influencing the growth in other stats - for example, a soldier with an higher score in mind would increase its weapon skills faster.

nemchenk

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #26 on: February 13, 2008, 07:37:22 pm »
Realistically, it makes no sense for soldiers to start off with such low stats. They're supposed to be elite soldiers.
I was going to suggest something quite quick-n-easy :) Shift the stat/skill "tags" one level down: Mediocre becomes Average, Average becomes Competent, etc. It is a bit odd to see "the best of the best of the best" have Mediocre skills everywhere ;) But this way, they are at least Average soldiers from the very start, with some Competent or even Proficient. We'd need a new rank though, as you can't get better than Superhuman! :D God-like? Anyway, you get the idea :)

Offline BTAxis

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #27 on: February 13, 2008, 07:52:54 pm »
@ufogio: You probably weren't using the latest trunk, just the latest release. The latest release uses the old increase system, which is based purely on kills.

SpaceWombat

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #28 on: February 13, 2008, 08:50:09 pm »
"We can rebuild him, we have the technology!" ;)

:D

But do you have 6.000.000 credits left...?  ::)

Anyway. The effective loss of soldiers due to crippling by too many serious injuries is a good point. I consider 0 health not necessarily as a dead body but as a loss. No matter if this guy will be burried, gets attached to machines or will be able to live a happy civil life not fit for combat again. That's enough punishment. Everyone else is not injuried to a point where he cannot fully regenerate.
How does this sound? We do not need to make it more complicated imho.

Offline tobbe

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Re: New soldier stat increase system
« Reply #29 on: February 13, 2008, 10:04:34 pm »
@ufogio: You probably weren't using the latest trunk, just the latest release. The latest release uses the old increase system, which is based purely on kills.

I just downloaded the 2.3 dev version trunk 14220. Is the new system implemented in this version? If not, is there any way to implement it in the dev version?