Author Topic: Concerns regarding fabs  (Read 1064 times)

Fireball14

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Concerns regarding fabs
« on: February 04, 2018, 09:06:00 pm »
Hey there CW fans, i would like to start discussion about whole fabs idea. What's your take on it?

My thoughts on it:
I worry that in the end this gonna be more like "switching fabs" game then fighting creeper. I don't mind complexity, but controlling every detail of production process and resolving bottlenecks is not what Creeper World game about for me.
I agree that "support your frontline" part of the game could use more work, but i don't want to look at my base more then at frontline, just because i'm managing all that production by hand.


UberWaffe

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2018, 03:16:20 am »
In the video he posted that showed off the fabs, it appeared as if a single fab can handle loads of production as long as it has enough input.

The only bottleneck I remember from the video was the energy to Arc (?) which is not fabs but some other building.
As long as the process speed of fabs are kept high the only bottlenecks would be raw resources, which I think is fine.

In the video that was also not a lot of work, since if you have spare energy you can (currently) throw down towers that mine additional resources from the same node.

GoodMorning

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2018, 03:38:05 am »
In the current so-early-who-knows-if-even-the-Creeper-will-stay-the-same builds, the major production bottleneck is actually the movement of wares over the network.
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Fireball14

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2018, 03:53:15 am »
In the video he posted that showed off the fabs, it appeared as if a single fab can handle loads of production as long as it has enough input.

The only bottleneck I remember from the video was the energy to Arc (?) which is not fabs but some other building.
As long as the process speed of fabs are kept high the only bottlenecks would be raw resources, which I think is fine.

In the video that was also not a lot of work, since if you have spare energy you can (currently) throw down towers that mine additional resources from the same node.
If you rewatch that video you will see that virgilw was 90% of the time looking at his fabs. Yeah i understand that this was showoff video and in re4al battle i would give more attention to the frontline, but still... Putting myself in his place i would still spend good chunk of mission looking at fabs and trying to understand where the bottleneck is and why.

But you right in a way, if its gonna be just throw down few buildings for resources and go kill the creeper, i'l be fine with that.\

In the current so-early-who-knows-if-even-the-Creeper-will-stay-the-same builds, the major production bottleneck is actually the movement of wares over the network.
Doesn't it that way in every creeper game?  ;D

jaworeq

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2018, 12:06:02 pm »

But you right in a way, if its gonna be just throw down few buildings for resources and go kill the creeper, i'l be fine with that.\


This will be used against you in space-constrained maps ;)
You're gonna need a lot of place for reactors AND fabs, which will be used by some mapmakers, on small maps or maps with lot of void to make your life more miserable.

What I'm concerned about so far, is that I don't see a lot of depth in this type of "crafting". Based on last video, it seems to be there only for purpose of being there - to check something off of the checklist. One useful thing it might be giving here, is sort of frontline outpost for SOME resources, like AC.

ShadowDragon7015

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2018, 12:55:33 pm »
I'm interested to see if map creators will be able to create their own "materials" for building and stuff like that, since I noticed the material creation was just a drop down menu. It would give a lot more uses for the fabs in player created maps, allow for interesting custom units, and give almost endless options similar to minecraft in that you use a 3x3 grid and drop in a set number of materials to make something new. So i think fabs could be really cool, though i do agree that sitting there waiting on fabs to do everything takes away from the "original creeper world gameplay".
Hiding the golden creeper for years to come.

virgilw

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2018, 02:47:57 pm »
Along the Fab/Ware ideological spectrum, I tend to fall near the middle but lean towards 'simplicity'.  So I don't want the stock game to become a production queue game (custom maps people can hopefully do whatever they like and folks can play or not play the style of games they prefer). 

As such, I have been steadily working towards making the fabs smarter, such that they aren't all selfish entities that starve each other out.  Instead they 'cooperate' better and things like weapons get higher priorities.  All of that is so you build them, decide what they do, then you don't have to micro them.  The strategic choices become resource acquisition and what, when, and where you bring those resources/wares into your economy (and of course when you deny resources to the enemy).

A few other items as food for thought....

- In CW3 the CN's were special case Fabs that turned ore into AC. The Forge turned phasic into 'upgrades'.

- Many RTS games have anywhere from 1 to 6+ resources. Some make you micro the resource collection and use, others it is more automated.  CW4's combat is about 'continuous engagement' (it has been in all of the games) so taking the player focus away from the front lines for long periods of time isn't something I want to do.

- Fabs serve a visual purpose that helps get rid of 'numbers stuck at the top of the screen', and replace them with a visual representation of how much of a resource or ammo you have.  For instance, you can see on the map the giant pile of AC you have stored up.  That said, I have continued to work on an optional 'control panel' type display to show numbers of each resource and how it is being used.

- Folks will hopefully be able to do whatever they want in custom maps, but for the story and stock game I am leaning heavily towards a shallow and limited ware tree/graph that is symmetric and tied to enabling special weapons and upgrades.  In other words you can imagine that Ore, AC, Phasic, and the Forge from CW3 will all become part of the new Fab/Ware system, will do a tad more, and of course be more extensible for custom maps.

Of course I play and play and play every change I make.  In another month things may be different (in major or minor ways).  So don't take anything I say as a solid plan.  A lot of this stuff just has to be tried and evaluated to see if it works or not.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2018, 02:49:56 pm by virgilw »

GoodMorning

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2018, 05:57:25 pm »
The term "Phasic" is new to me, though I assume it's an internal name for what was labelled "Aether".

Specifying recipes manually seems like a sure path to a fabrication chain, and hopefully not necessary in this kind of build-once-modify-if-unavoidable idea.

I like the idea of piles of wares sitting about after fabs are destroyed. There is even an excuse - wares are blocks of 'the same thing', about as interesting as the ground on which they sit.
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Karsten75

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2018, 06:39:59 pm »
The term "Phasic" is new to me, though I assume it's an internal name for what was labelled "Aether".

I think Virgil conflated the games. Phasic (if you search these forums you may find references) seem to have been a term for something discontinued during Particle Fleet development. Aether is the correct name for the "Totem stuff" in CW3.

Quote
I like the idea of piles of wares sitting about after fabs are destroyed. There is even an excuse - wares are blocks of 'the same thing', about as interesting as the ground on which they sit.

Even the most careful reading of Virgil's response only gives a faint clue as to how this interpretation could arise. The "piles" Virgil referred to are stockpiles, either pending production or post-production inventory associated with a fab. I'm pretty sure that fab destruction will by association destroy all stockpiles belonging to that fab. The data structures associated with keeping track of wares are closely mapped onto the fabrication network.

As a flight of fancy, I can totally see ruined piles of wares littering the landscape post-battle.
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GoodMorning

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2018, 07:12:43 pm »
K75 - I was suggesting the idea, not approving of a proposed concept. To borrow a phrase from somewhere-or-other...
As a flight of fancy [...]
A narrative is a lightly-marked path to another reality.

virgilw

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2018, 12:15:33 pm »
Ha.... yeah, Aether not Phasic.  Phasic was a Particle Fleet thing.

NighthawkM

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2018, 07:33:12 am »
I see it more as a you could use this, but it should not become a have to. And by that I mean the player can choose to use the Fab, but most if not all stages should be doable without it.

Keeper Decagon

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2018, 07:56:48 am »
I see it more as a you could use this, but it should not become a have to. And by that I mean the player can choose to use the Fab, but most if not all stages should be doable without it.

That kind of eliminates it in general use, no? Of course, there will be some people that will be able to do anything with the mere basics, but the way I see these Fabs working in the game as a whole is that they will be integral to many branches of strategy. There'd be no point in having them if you can do everything without them.
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GoodMorning

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2018, 04:31:03 pm »
Well, can doesn't mean should. In CW3, I'm only beginning to learn where AC and the air units are best applied.

And just because we can play without a Forge doesn't mean we will. Sometimes it is necessary.
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Karsten75

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Re: Concerns regarding fabs
« Reply #14 on: February 08, 2018, 05:06:18 pm »
I see it more as a you could use this, but it should not become a have to. And by that I mean the player can choose to use the Fab, but most if not all stages should be doable without it.

Carefully re-read Virgil's first post on this thread.  Just like perhaps you *could* play the majority of CW3 maps without some units, without ore/AC and without Forge upgrades, so might you perhaps be able to play CW4 without wares. Might not be as much fun, some areas may never be accessible, but hey.. to each his own.

Essentially what you're seeing is an extension of the same process that converted ore into AC - just externalized, formalized and made extensible to allow for greater variety.
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