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Offline Outlawstar15a2

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Question about the future
« on: July 19, 2010, 12:48:56 am »
I was just curious. In the future at some point I was wondering if a alien campaign would be added? They seem pretty cool and it would be awesome to play a campaign as them.

Offline Duke

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2010, 01:39:54 am »
Interesting idea :)
But I'm not a game designer, just a stupid coder (TM).
In theory, it should be possible to make the engine "friend/foe-neutral". But that would require quite some work. So don't expect something like that anytime soon, if ever.

Offline Hertzila

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2010, 01:43:45 am »
It's more about "could" and "cared to" than "would".
In other words, parts of the human campaign are still done by engine code (ugly way according to devs) and in case it does anything major/what you want to change, it would have to be replaced with a scriptable way. It's also hugely dependent on someone actually bothering to do the campaign itself, which isn't a small thing to do.

I do agree that it could be great.

Nearly Edit: Well Duke managed to write that as I was writing this. But there you have it, the engine would require a decent amount of work.

Offline geever

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2010, 08:51:50 am »
In other words, parts of the human campaign are still done by engine code (ugly way according to devs) and in case it

Well calling the campaign an Engine is a bit funny ATM, but I'm working on it. ;)
Or you mean the renderer? Then I don't know what parts you refer to.

-geever

Offline Hertzila

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2010, 11:02:52 am »
Well calling the campaign an Engine is a bit funny ATM, but I'm working on it. ;)
Or you mean the renderer? Then I don't know what parts you refer to.

-geever

I'm not actually sure what parts of the engine I'm referring to but I've repeatedly seen, IIRC, you and other devs saying that there is still some code in the engine to make the official campaign work. So, in case a custom one needs to change what the engine does fo the campaign, it would require messing around with the source.

Or am I just rambling like a maniac about something I don't know about?

Offline geever

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2010, 11:54:16 am »
I'm not actually sure what parts of the engine I'm referring to but I've repeatedly seen, IIRC, you and other devs saying that there is still some code in the engine to make the official campaign work. So, in case a custom one needs to change what the engine does fo the campaign, it would require messing around with the source.

Or am I just rambling like a maniac about something I don't know about?

Without the context: I don't know.
We use the renderer to show images, render the globe and so but these are not closely related to the campaign. There are other limitations to face with though.

-geever

Offline Duke

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2010, 11:55:07 pm »
Sorry, it was me who used the term 'engine', so let me clarify:

In general, 'engine' can have a multitude of meanings.
In this particular case I meant "the code the executes the campaign scripts".
In UFO:AI 'engine' usually refers to the part of the code we inherited from Quake.

btw I don't think the renderer is friend/foe-related. At least it shouldn't. But you'll never know ;)

However, before talking about code changes, we should think about the differences in gameplay. What immediately comes to my mind is
- aliens can't build their bases like humans do
- aliens don't intercept human aircraft
- aliens don't *wait* for missions, they initiate them
- would aliens research human technologies ? A little bit maybe.
- do aliens have a budget ??
- and so on.

The more I think about it, I have to say it could be a fascinating game. The changes to the battlescape code will be the minor part. But if done right, we'll need additional code for some 70% of what we are doing outside battlescape.

With the current dev team, we could achieve that by 2020 :( But things sometimes change rapidly. With half a dozen of additional devs, it could as well be 2011. So in order to atract those 6 devs, you should start with a good gameplay concept.
I still think it might be a *great* idea :)

Offline Thrashard96

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2010, 09:11:07 am »
So you mean the opposite human campaign (i mean alien campaign) with alien bases and human invasion? Yeah, that would be cool, although, it would be a lot of work, like starting from scratch...

Offline dfscott

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2010, 03:24:38 pm »
So you mean the opposite human campaign (i mean alien campaign) with alien bases and human invasion?

I don't think so.  The way I read it, it was exactly the same scenario: alien creatures invading the earth.  The difference is that YOU are the aliens and the computer plays the human defenders.

Offline Duke

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2010, 12:33:27 am »
@dfscott: exactly.

Doing the same game with alien models instead of humans wouldn't be much additional fun, right ?

Offline tzzimy

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2010, 02:06:13 am »
An alien campaign, which will be unlikely for the far future, it is indeed a very intriguing idea exactly as Duke described. Dfscott tried to simplify it with just changing roles but I think he is also in a good direction Duke. I.e. aliens should be in a tough position at start, even with their technology (yeah ok i know sounds wierd when you can travel through star systems) and they are "obliged" to investigate local technology and infrastructure in order to be able to build the definite advantage and take over the humans planet. A script-able campaign would be awesome but that is NOT, and should NOT be considered in any case a request by my side! Its only silly wishful thinking so please don't kill me! :P

Cheers,
Tzzim

Offline fede

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2010, 08:07:35 am »
However, before talking about code changes, we should think about the differences in gameplay. What immediately comes to my mind is
- aliens can't build their bases like humans do
- aliens don't intercept human aircraft
- do aliens have a budget ??
- and so on.

!!!
- aliens can't build their bases like humans do
Really?? Hey can't remember in ufo 1, but last mission to complete ufo2 (the one where most of missions were underwater) you researched enough to discover an underwater alien base. Battlescape in there was about killing all aliens inside, or a specific target in that maze... Too many years passed ^_^
So i won't end UFOAI by joining an alien base ???  >:(
Wtf !
All your base are belong to us !!!
mind collapse
bzzz

- aliens don't intercept human aircraft
Actually they do. Alien interceptors happens to aim a long-travelling firebird or a saracen when i send it on him... at least they do in my games!

- do aliens have a budget ??
That's easy.. even if aliens are able to build antimatheria easier than humans, that's still the required fuel even for any FIAT space-tractor in the blue  ;D

Offline geever

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2010, 11:16:13 am »
A script-able campaign would be awesome but that is NOT, and should NOT be considered in any case a request by my side! Its only silly wishful thinking so please don't kill me! :P

No request needed. It's an old dream of mine. ;) :D

-geever

Offline tzzimy

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2010, 05:15:47 pm »
* tzzimy unhides from his corner and sweeps off his forehead with relief... ;D

Offline Duke

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Re: Question about the future
« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2010, 11:21:17 pm »
@fede:
Humans can bring in the material needed to build a base with trucks, so the current click-and-build design is quite ok. But aliens would need a big freighter ufo to carry the material, so humans would have a chance to intercept the freighter.

Yes, aliens intercept human aircrafts. We have the code for that. What I meant is that defending against human aircrafts is not the *primary* goal of the aliens. Also humans have no reason to fly around like the aliens do today.

The current base management code is centered around building and maintainance cost, salaries and getting funding from happy nations. It's very hard for me to imagine that the 'hive-minded' aliens should have similar concepts. Maybe they can get everything they order, but the time for delivery is their problem ?

In general: if we should ever do the 'alien campaign', it should have a *very* different gameplay. Just changing the looks isn't worth the effort IMHO. It might be the first milestone, though.