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Topics - De-Legro

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Realms Chat / MOVED: Re: The Kingdom of Ascalon
« on: November 29, 2018, 01:17:55 AM »

Conduct & Design Discussion / Troops V2.0 Upkeep
« on: November 24, 2017, 06:07:19 AM »
For a long time we have needed to change how upkeep on troops work. As it stands there are only two costs, one continuous which is the supply of of food, and one periodic which is the supply of equipment. As the game stands now there is no reason to not simply recruit the best possible equipment for your troops. The periodic supply of equipment (assuming you have recruited your desired unit already) is in general small enough to be handled by the building supply. For example realms like Nril can maintain 200 HI in every settlement, despite having relatively little metal supply simply because they don't need to retrain troops that often, and they are one of the realms that has been involvtemed in more conflict that anyone else.

This system ties into the proposed recruitment system, so please read that first. Under this proposal there are four possible upkeep factors
  • Food for the troops
  • Gold for building upkeep
  • Gold for equipment upkeep and purchase
  • Gold for troop wages
Again lets examine militia first. The militia draw equipment from the settlement Armoury, which is in effect the Lords personal armoury. As such the Lord would already be bearing the cost for supplying and maintaining the armoury (under a yet to be described system). As they are only part time troops and they live in their own homes, food is also their own concern (ie draw out of the same system as general population the same as now). So the only cost on militia gold for upkeep of the Garrison building and troop wages. In general the wages should be less the for equivalently equipped professional soldiers to offset the limitations of militia.

With professional troops we have the cost of the barracks structure, cost of procuring and maintain equipment and cost for wages. Food is something I have still considering. We could have them just continue to draw from the general food production of the settlement. What I was thinking about was since the barracks have a responsibility to feed their troops possibly they could use some of their treasury/operating budget to purchase food should there be a shortage in the settlement.

In terms of calculations we have two options for equipment/wages. Charge a single fixed amount based on a full contingent of troops and stored equipment regardless of the current state. Alternatively we could calculate the cost based on current troop numbers and stored equipment. The first allows for a barracks to accumulate its own wealth, which can then be used when for example it suffers catastrophic losses and needs to purchase vast amounts of replacement equipment. It also makes it much easier to calculate the ongoing cost you need to service. The 2nd system potentially saves you gold at various times and if we have a separate system for one off payments you could still provide an injection of cash to meet specific needs.

Conduct & Design Discussion / Troops V2.0 - Recruitment
« on: November 24, 2017, 05:20:02 AM »
So currently recruitment is a purposeful action, something that you need to monitor and initiate. The design purpose was to foster "activity" in terms of needing to log and and consider the situation. The reality in my opinion is that we see characters that exist for no other purpose then to manage recruitment, traveling from settlement to settlement, or perhaps being assigned to a single settlement to manage. Thus the system favors the active and those that subscribe so as to have plenty of character slots to assign to such a task. I am a firm believer that "busy work" is not a valid replacement for actual meaningful interactions and tasks.

Secondly we have a rather "gamey" tech tree of buildings required for training specific troops. Guard houses, Barracks, Garrisons, buildings that have actual meaning and roles in RL, but here exist purely to unlock weapon x and armour y. We already limit the creation of the tools of war, and restrict the speed of fabrication due to population and resources. I personally don't see a lot of point to yet another hierarchy.

This concept ties into the work I am current doing with military grouping, as well as the idea of having a differentiation between professional troops and militia. As each type has a slightly different set up lets start with Militia

Militia is trained by the Garrison building. It is defined as a single unit, with optional sub units. The size of the militia is not restricted, but the number of new recruits under training at any one time is restricted by the size of the garrison building. Recruitment is automated, you specify the desired size of each sub unit and the equipment load out, and the militia will take people from the population and train them as required. equipment for the militia is drawn from the settlements armoury
Militia spend half their time working the fields etc just as they do now.

Professional units are trained and housed in barracks. A city can support multiple units, with each requiring its own barrack structure. The size of the barracks determines the maximum size of the unit as well as the number of recruits that can be trained at any one time. Just like militia the player defines the sub units equipment and size, and the game will recruit and train them in an attempt to maintain the desired numbers. Equipment for training and for resupply is drawn from the barracks own armoury.

The devil however is in the detail which I haven't yet really settled on. Settlements retain the concept of maximum number of peasant recruit available per day. So it would be desirable to be able to determine the priority between all the recruitment centers in the situation where we have a greater number of positions to fill then we have available recruits.

Given that the system introduces the concept of multiple armouries within a settlement, a system to control the flow of equipment to each armoury is needed. We don't want the situation where your favourite elite unit is under manned because all the swords are flowing into the settlement armoury. Ideally the system would be mostly automatic, but I don't see a problem with also allowing for manual intervention, at least in the case of moving items from the settlement armoury into barrack armouries. My first draft allows you to set the min and max storage quantity for each item in each barrack, as well as to rank each barrack/armour priority.

I should also note that this system will tie in with other proposed systems, like troop upkeep costs and weapon/equipment trade between settlements. Particularly the weapon/equipment trading system as it is envisaged that the barracks will use its own treasury to attempt to maintain adequate stock of weapons and equipment by purchasing off the open market.

Conduct & Design Discussion / Troops V2.0 - Unit Types
« on: November 24, 2017, 12:00:24 AM »
As the game stands, troops are just mobilised militia. Our troops can fill any role at any time which provides flexibility, but does not provide for choice and consequence. I propose a system that has three potential troop types.

1) Standard Trooops/Professional Troops

These are the troops that accompany our characters in war. In addition to martial training, they receive training in field marching, fortified camp construction etc.

2) Militia

These are your local troops, troops that perform both a defensive purpose and provide what passes for a police force in medieval times. In general they are not meant to be used outside of the settlement though we could consider allowing them to be mobilised with some sort of penalty, perhaps lower morale. In contrast with Professional troops they don't require as much infrastructure, since they live within the settlement in their own houses they don't require barracks, and they are equipped directly from the settlements armoury.

3) Levies (future possibility)

Giving your populace weapons from your armour and pressing them into emergency service. They likely have little to no skill in combat, generally don't want to be there and constantly worry about getting back to their fields for the harvest. I am not proposing to add these guys in at this stage, but they are a future possibility to plan for.

Conduct & Design Discussion / How to Tutorial
« on: November 23, 2017, 10:25:54 PM »
Thatís a good idea, generally speaking, but thereís actually more to it than that. I personally consider it to be a matter of players adding value to each other, and the importance of history to provide context. I had the good fortune of starting amidst a group of players within Ascalon, and whilst we did a lot of stuff amongst ourselves, the interactions that happened as a result of the Princeís County being in the same court as other players were good because it meant that people talked and argued to a broader range of people in a good general context, which is great.

Itís completely understandable that people want to do their own thing because it seems appealing, but in reality, itís unwise. Players add value to each other through interaction, and Iíll admit that I donít see enough of it happening, and a lot of times itís difficult to chat with your neighbour without seeming like youíre only talking because you need their resources or whatever. Inter-realm diplomacy can be good, but itís too infrequent and a lot of people tend not to play ball when theyíre approached by something interesting from abroad, but perhaps thatís as a result of the bunker mentality entrenched in the oldest realms whose core players somehow managed to keep playing the game after so much time without development. As they still exist, we can all hope that a bit of nudging alongside some good and appealing updates might draw some more good players out of hiding.

Still though, itíd be nice to see what else we can do in the future to give new players a better introduction to the game.

Tom was always against a tutorial, but I think some sort of tutorial run in a area separate to the game world is needed. Something like earning your spurs before being allowed to announce your presence to the world maybe.

General Discussion / Discussion - Subscription Levels
« on: October 09, 2017, 12:37:29 AM »
So for a long time I have thought about if the subscription levels provide anything to the game other then a source of income. I would propose that we scrap it entirely. Even though we have a free account I think we will find that having a "pay wall" turns people off since general experience will suggest to them that playing free in any game that has paid accounts is signing up to be a second class citizen. Further it will get rid of the constant gripes about players with large accounts.

What I would suggest is that we change the rules, one player = one account and that all accounts are equal, say somewhere between 8-20 characters allowed. To offset the income stream we would need more goodies for people to purchase, or a subscription system that adds something that is desirable but doesn't infer in game advantage, like the ability to have have one of the in game houses/dynasties when that feature is completed.

Bug Reports / Battle Bug
« on: August 10, 2017, 04:06:56 AM »
Has anyone started a battle in the past few hours? There appears to be a bug where the character that initiates a battle ends up as the defender. I am trying to see if this is a case for all battles or not.

Conduct & Design Discussion / Recruitment Overhaul
« on: June 17, 2017, 04:43:04 AM »
Lets see if I can finally write this down so it makes sense. As I mentioned in previous threads I think the balance of M&F is off. The idea of having a history for every warrior is great, the idea that you personally have to order every single training to me doesn't stack up. You are a noble, don't you have minions to handle stuff like that, just as trade flows where supposed to be about the "bigger" picture. That was the starting point for me, so I thought about how we train troops and the often talked about desire to have "better" unit groups and it occurred to me that as a noble what you would be most interested in was ensuring you had battle ready units, and leave the fine details of recruitment and training to achieve those objectives to others.

To me it seemed that a solution would be to define a number of units or groups for each settlement, define the composition in terms of size and equipment and then allow the game to train warriors into those units as needed and as equipment allows. Probably there would need to be a way to define priority for equipment so that you ensure those units you most desire are not lacking as some other unit grabbed all the equipment needed. Either that or completely change the production system for equipment.

At the same time I have always been dissatisfied with the building tree for equipment production. As a concept it works nicely, but the building names, equipment pools and equipment distribution between buildings has always seems arbitrary, and the building names in particular are often just weird, like guardhouses being used to train certain equipment rather then you know, being a place guards use. In line with the new unit system I was thinking barracks at least would become the building needed to define a unit. You would be able to build several barracks, and require one for each unit you wish to house within the settlement. Probably barracks would also come in different sizes to house units of differing sizes.

Now there are obviously lots of details still needed, some of which I have answers for, some I don't, but I was wondering in general if this was a direction that was worth pursuing before putting in more time working out details.

Conduct & Design Discussion / Train to None
« on: June 17, 2017, 02:52:25 AM »
It would be nice if for equipment at least you could retrain troops to have nothing in the slot.

General Discussion / Remove archery restrictions on dense forest
« on: May 14, 2017, 11:27:48 AM »
Archers are rather integral to a balanced force, yet we force Lords of dense forest to do without them, or suffer the endless resupply of javelin. I also can't see the logic of it. Hunters use bows within forest. The Welsh were famous for ambush tactics firing their longbows at close range so I don't see how wide open places are a pre-requisite for realisng the utility of the weapon.

General Discussion / Multiple Evade Exploit
« on: April 19, 2017, 03:14:12 AM »
Since it seems that certain groups within the community persists to use this exploit, I will repeat once again. It is intended that you only get one attempt to evade any single battle. I am aware that is it currently very easy to avoid the check Tom put in place to restrict this behavior, but since we can't update the live server at this time there is little I can do to correct the oversight.

That does NOT mean it is okay to continue to take advantage of this. I hope this will be the last time this has to be bought up.

Off-topic Chat / Spam
« on: April 11, 2017, 03:08:29 AM »
Hi guys

I am well aware that we are getting constant spam from two spam bots. Unfortunately until another moderator or someone with admin rights comes online the best I can do is to continue to delete their posts as I spot them.

See the initial bug report here,5906.0.html

So what is this then? I thought I would do a quick write up of how I resolved this bug (pretending it passes Andrews testing) to help those whom may want to contribute, but are unsure how. First thing you will need to do is to fork the code on Github under your own account, since for whatever reason Tom has locked down creating branches on the master repository. If people need help doing this or understanding git and Github, let me know and I will do a quick tut. Once that was done and I had cloned my new fork repository onto my computer I was ready to find the issue.

Now I had some advantage in that I am familiar with Symfony, which is the PHP framework M&F uses, and the code base in general from having helped prepare some test cases early in M&F's development. So I knew we would be dealing with the HTML templated as starting point and magically knew I could find them in  src\BM2\SiteBundle\Resources\views. Since we did not have this particular problem with the Soldier form, which only encountered the issue if you were issues large amounts of orders, I figured comparing it to entourage would be a good start. The relevant files are can be found in src\BM2\SiteBundle\Resources\views\Character\entourage.html.twig and src\BM2\SiteBundle\Resources\views\Character\soliders.html.twig.

So what are these files? They are HTML templates using the Twig templating system. Basically they are a way of defining a HTML page that imports the relevant data from the M&F database. So the entourage file was simple enough, I could see the bulk of the code for the page and importantly the HTML table and submit button code. However the Soldier file has none of this, instead it imports BM2SiteBundle:element:soldierslist.html.twig. Why? Simply because the solider table is used in two places, the character soldier control and the settlement militia control. Both those pages import the code from the soldierlist element, so that if the solider list needs to change, we only have to change the code in one place. So the code we really want to compare to the entourage form is \src\BM2\SiteBundle\Resources\views\element\soliderlist.html.twig.

Now there is a fair bit of code difference to sift through here, soldiers have far more functionality like groups, group actions, resupply etc. But the important part I found was this

        $("#soldiers tr[has_changed='false']").remove();

This is a simple Javascript/jQuery routine that catches the onclick event for the HTML object with the ID field of do_submit, and then performs some actions. $("#do_submit") is the jQuery selector that grabs the HTML object/s that have the ID of do_submit, which if we look at the code is the ID for the form submit button. This code is pretty simple.It prevents the standard event function, ie prevents the form being submitted. It replaces the HTML element with the class of actionbar with some text saying loading, it hides the submit button. The important part is the last two lines though, it removed from the submit data all table rows from the soldier table that have no changes. $("#soldiers tr[has_changed='false']") is jQuery for select rows (tr) from HTML object with the ID soldiers, which in this case is our table, that have not changed. The code then submits the form.

So fixing the issue is as easy as adding this code to the entourage page. I changed all references to soldier classes and IDs to entourage. Further things I had to do were
  • The entourage table didn't have a ID field, I added one so that our jQuery code can find it
  • The submit button didn't have an ID, so again I added on called do_submit.
Job done I committed the changed code to my fork, advised Andrew that there was some code to be tested and now I wait for the code to be tested and added to the primary fork.

General Discussion / Some Questions about First Ones and Player Characters
« on: December 19, 2016, 05:34:48 AM »
Just canvasing the player base for current opinion on a couple of topic that will inform some design suggestions I am working on

1) Are Player Character the only First Ones?
2) Are bandits human or First Ones, or a mix I suppose
3) Are First Ones and Humans genetically related and are viable offspring possible from a coupling between the two races?
4) Do the First exert a magical or physic control over Humans.

General Discussion / Code Plans
« on: May 31, 2016, 12:20:42 AM »
Starting this Friday, I have a window of about 1 week where I will have time to work a bit on M&F Code. My plan at the moment is to tackle the messaging system and try and implement some of the long standing wish list, like the option to remove message threading.

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