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    posted a message on Randomly generated items?

    I would note that SC2 does include a loot system, but it is poorly documented. The Loot data type is specifically for this and you can setup units to drop things on death via their Loot field. The Loot can be randomized and you can have it drop other units, items and effects (so you could use it to give buffs on death).

     

    Validators can be then used to control what gets dropped or not.

    Posted in: Data
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    posted a message on Validator: Enumerate Area's "<=", does not act like "<=" ?

    All is forgiven, it is an easy mistake to make. And you are correct in that the enumerate area validator is cryptic in its operation.

     

    If you still desire, I can explain how the areas work, and how the overall validator ends up working.

    Posted in: Data
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    posted a message on SC2 Mapster Upgrade Discussion Thread

    CYA = Cover Your Ass. General used for anything where an average situation or person would just wave off circumstances, but that one person who decides to press the issue and costs you a lawsuit. So easier to just provide legal cover when someone who is adversarial tries to take advantage or pushes the limits. Quite a bit of EULAs are this.

    Posted in: General Chat
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    posted a message on Designing a Better Co-Op
    Quote from Pr0nogo>>
    Quote from ArcaneDurandel>>And some commanders, regardless of the AI comp, are going to destroy them (no AI comp is going to be able to hack their way through Karax).

    Why not? Why can't there be a siege comp that (intelligently, and with interactivity in mind) negates some of Karax's strengths selectively, so that he must be smart with his positioning and communicate with his ally to properly support his defensive efforts? Why should some commanders be able to play and win while their partners underperform (or in Karax's case, blatantly AFK)? It's a co-operative, team effort. If one part of your team can't make the cut, you'll stand less of a chance.

    I guess the question is, how far do you want to go outside standard SC2 units? Karax fundamentally can't be sieged through because his top bar abilities. Now, could you remove those and rework them? Sure, but easily a 1/3rd of his design revolves around it, so you just end up dumping Karax altogether.
    Current SC2 siege units are simply never going to be match for Karax, but that is by design. He sacrifices an army and mobility and being in many places at once, in exchange for nearly unbeatable defenses. Now, he can be defeated, but it requires Vipers.
    Also, I hate to say this, but having seen this have seen this in other games, if you DO make a siege comp that can crush Karax, a smart player will see that comp and immediately exit and reroll. Players will either complain about the comp, not play Karax or fish for a beatable.
    I think the divergence of opinion is how you view what needs to be experimented with: The maps, or the commanders.
    We can have a wide variety of maps and AI comps, but that by necessity means we must limit commanders power (as you propose). Or we provide semi standard comps and a set of maps, and they are treated as a sandbox for you to experiment what your commanders can do.
    Currently the attitude seen with the current setup is Brutal must be beatable by a pair of commanders with no mastery. If you want more difficulty, you have mutators, unfair difficulty to counter your own unfair capabilities.
    Posted in: General Chat
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    posted a message on [Help] Understanding how all of this holds together

    Can we move the index of events to a seperate page or maybe just a create sub pages for each lable/grouping of Actions/Events/Conditions/Functions so the overview page isn't cluttered up? I may do it, just want your thoughts so it doesn't make a mess of anyone's plans.

    Posted in: Wiki Discussion
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    posted a message on [Help] Understanding how all of this holds together

    Correct, the distinction is purely for the GUI. Conditions are simply functions that have a return type of boolean. So any place that demands a condition will only allow conditions, but you can certainly use functions that return boolean in other places, which include conditions.

     

    In programming terms, Actions/Conditions/Functions are all functions

     

    Action = void someFunc();

    Condition = boolean someFunc();

    Function = anyType someFunc();

     

    I know this is pretty low level, so I will probably have to make a page or two on this if I do pages regarding the flags and creating your own GUI constructs.

     

    When I say GUI constructs, I mean things like For Each Unit in Unit Group, and Switch/Case.

    Posted in: Wiki Discussion
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    posted a message on [Help] Understanding how all of this holds together

    I'll review the pages.

     

    Conditions are functions, but they are boolean only functions. When defining a GUI construct, you can control what GUI element can be used in specific locations, so in this way, the GUI can guarantee a boolean function is used where a boolean is expected, so you can't cause subtle logic errors that arise otherwise.

     

    This is a product of the fact that the underlying language is C like, so the return of integers is perfectly valid for boolean comparisons and many of the GUI types are expressed as integer handles. Without the limits on the conditions, I could very easily do a function that returns a dialog item into a boolean, and it would be accepted (this can be used a short hack to verify that a non null/valid dialog item was returned, considered poor coding).

     

    Also I'll see about, if you haven't already, adding documentation on each flag, since many of them are conditional and rely on underlying macros to work correctly (many of them simply force the macros to actually be evaluated).

     

    Perhaps we might want a page on macros in galaxy?

    Posted in: Wiki Discussion
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    posted a message on Designing a Better Co-Op

    Modifying matchmaking is not going to ever fly. Many people enjoy the either deliberately synergistic commanders or the unsynergistic commanders. Also excluding certain combos would make some mutators VERY narrow. I'm pretty sure if you limit each commander to ones in the same race, the only combo worth playing would become Vorazun/Karax. And to top it off, just makes games slower, since you no longer can pair up with anyone, you can statistically only pair up with 1/3 of the playerbase, possibly less.

     

    The problem I would have with reactive AI is that means your mastery choices are pointless, the AI is going to hardcounter them anyhow. And some can't really be countered because of how general they are (Chrono boost for example). And some commanders, regardless of the AI comp, are going to destroy them (no AI comp is going to be able to hack their way through Karax).

     

    Hiding the mutators is just being even more unfair, its a form of fake difficulty, and again violates some of the very guidelines laid out out for the contest. You should NEVER make it so the game is decided by time X, but you will lose at time that is later then X, that truly is wasting your time.

     

     

    Posted in: General Chat
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    posted a message on RTC contest partner (I am looking to be one)

    Depends on how Karax is played. Also depends on the mastery configuration for him. Karax by default has resilient units, but all his units cost 50% more. His masteries allow him to either reduce his units cost or increase his building HP.

     

    He tends to do very well in any defense style mission, but can also be played as a slowly creeping tower offense. Often he can use the cover of his partners army to mass deploy cannons/monoliths in the middle of battle to win. Also, he routinely can clear any base defenses with his orbital strikes.

     

    If the game ending is dependent on killing some kind of boss, Karax will probably just camp/cover the spawn area with towers and one shot the boss. You could make the boss a base killer, has been done before in mutators (mechanics that either disable or provide units that do far greater damage to structures).

     

    Note however, that you probably don't need to take this into account since your idea could be valid against raynor/kerrigan/artanis, and could be tweaked to accomadate the other commanders. It is just some commanders have such weird playstyles, it sometimes is difficult to work around them (no army, disposable army, temp army, special forces army, hero only, all are here).

    Posted in: Team Recruitment
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    posted a message on Designing a Better Co-Op
    I'll address each point

    -The only reward for being skilled at your commander is that you make every mission trivial. When you win, it feels like it was the natural conclusion; that the AI would never have done anything to stop you from winning, because you've grinded until your commander is overtuned and/or you're skilled at that commander.

    People in general want this. Coop is partially to be a grind. It also is a sandbox to screw around in. If I want difficulty, there is mutators and custom mutators. Those can ramp the difficulty as high as I want.

    -Similarly, the only punishment for not being skilled at your commander is that you can't make any mission do-able. When you lose, it feels unfair; you would have to be good enough or high-level enough to trivialize every mission. There is no in-between, only these two extremes, at which point it does not feel genuinely rewarding nor punishing when you win or lose.

    I would disagree, given people can often take on brutal at level 1 with commanders.

    -The AI is uninteractive. Their attack waves are spawned and their behavior does not adapt to the toolsets the players have. There is no specific reaction to powerful units or heroes entering a certain area, or a commander ability being used. Players act on an object that does not think for itself, issue attacks itself, purchase upgrades itself, or even defend itself. Its assault patterns are arbitrary rather than adaptive. It lacks harassment capabilities altogether. Players exploit the default tactical AI of units and it has become the status quo for the AI to simply sit there while its base/army is dismantled.

    The AI does rebuild but people do tend to just exterminate the bases if they can. Often the objective keeps people preoccupied enough that by the time one would even consider attacking a base, you have an overwhelming army anyhow.

    -The commanders you can play as are poorly designed. Commanders with actives (Nova/Vorazun/Alarak) are too powerful and commanders with passives (Abathur/Stukov) lack impact. They have variety in their units and loadouts, but outside of niche cases, very few of them act as specialists that work best when combined with other commanders, thus defeating the entire purpose of co-op. Raynor/Artanis is a good combo because of mass-produced infantry and the invulnerable-before-death shield; Vorazun works well with other allies that cloak or burrow their units. But Karax is a better version of Swann, and Kerrigan/Zagara/Abathur all lack the tools to compete with the most powerful commanders. The current roster lacks identity in some cases and viability in others.

    I can agree that some commanders are weaker then others. But the only real standout one currently is Stukov. Abathur is probably the most unstoppable army once he gets going (Queens are incredible with their heals).

    -The maps do not facilitate high replay value. Once you've experienced a map once or twice, you should know it inside and out, regardless of which race you went up against, as there are very few variations to the AI's army compositions, very few objective variations (mostly what order they appear in, if anything) and no terrain variations, leading to a very linear experience as opposed to one that at least has a chance to be different the next time you play the map.

    I believe this is a product of the many commanders. If you examine their guidelines for the coop map contest, 2 major ones standout to remove quite a few mechanics in maps.

    1) You can not have a mechanic that makes the map incredibly trivial for a single commander, nor a mechanic that punishes you for playing a specific commander. For example, one person proposed an idea that the enemy would get stronger based on the deaths of your units. This of course makes Zagara, Stukov and Alarak pointless, and makes Karax, Kerrigan and Nova free wins.

     

    2) The game must last under 40 minutes.

     

    Given these restrictions, it becomes increasingly difficult inside a single map to keep to these guidelines, while still retaining a cohesive map mechanic. 

    -Nearly every mutator in the game is based around an unfair mechanic or relies on poor game design to even be noteworthy (i.e. weather that damages your units without the game notifying you of it).

    In general, yes. It becomes very tricky to add mechanics that are fair and can not be overcome by RPG grinds.

    I put forth the following suggestions. More will likely come when I have some more time to think on the topic, and when I'm not so tired.

     

    -Give commanders more clear-cut identities and play to their strengths. A defensive commander should struggle to egress into enemy territory, but should be able to achieve the "hold" part of "take-and-hold" quite nicely if an offensive commander clears the way for them. It also shouldn't be impossible for a defensive commander to solve the "take" part of that equation, either - just make it less optimal than if you're an offensive commander. Similarly, have a mobile offensive commander that can move across the map quickly (probably zerg), but is less effective and powerful than a slower offensive commander that has stronger individual units (probably protoss). I don't have detailed outlines for how to change all individual commanders, but this approach should be used to rebalance some commanders and make them superior/inferior situationally as opposed to some being superior/inferior holistically.

     These already exist. For the highly mobile offensive commander, you have Kerrigan, with her Omega Worms (free, short cooldown, usable by both players). For the defensive commander, you have Karax. For a slower offensive commander that has stronger unit, that would be Artanis or Mech Alarak.
    Could some commanders use some modifications? Sure. But I feel all of them have pretty unique identities as is.
    • Artanis: Well rounded offensive army with heavy artillery units (Tempests, High Templars or Reavers).
    • Swann: Mechanized assault, but can do mechanized defense, with some of the highest hp units and buildings.
    • Raynor: Bio, Mech, general purpose
    • Kerrigan: Hero, has mostly support army, ultra mobile.
    • Zagara: Suicide disposable army
    • Karax: Ultimate defense, super resilient army
    • Stukov: Hybrid, is both Zagara and Swann at once
    • Alarak: Sacrificial army, uses death to his advantage
    • Nova: Special Forces, micro army
    • Abathur: Snowball, evolution into super army
    • Vorazun: Distract/Disorient. Fields the most CC of all, army can be destroyed pretty easily, but has so much disable and cloaking, often doesn't get hit

    One thing that prevents the explicit synergy is the fact that you have little or no control on what commander you could be partnered with. As a result, the commanders need to stand on their own. If there is synergy, then it is likely to be emergent or just accepted as a possibility (Kerrigan + Stukov for global attack speed/hp buff, Karax + Swann for nearly unbeatable defense, etc.).

    Posted in: General Chat
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    posted a message on RTC contest partner (I am looking to be one)

    It would work for Stukov, but not Zagara. Zagara routinely throws away several hundred supply per game. She is specifically designed this way, with a supply cap of 100, but has access to free banelings, cheap zerglings that spawn fast, and scourge.

     

    Also of consideration is Karax, who can win without building a single combat unit, since his design is around powerful top bar abilities, and the ability to instant build base defense, so he often offensively towers. So he would be an autowin against this mechanic. He often doesn't go above 50 supply.

    Posted in: Team Recruitment
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    posted a message on RTC contest partner (I am looking to be one)

    Do realize almost 1.5 pages of the rules amount to: Don't make a map that will tank in performance.

    Posted in: Team Recruitment
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    posted a message on SC2 Mapster Upgrade Discussion Thread
    Quote from 3yks >>
    Quote from StripyTail >>

    I was trying to find my way around and this HIDEOUS just keep hurting my eyes. I think i will sue CURSE for making me blind.

     

    That said I miss my front PAGE!!!!!! 

     

    I saw that Wargirl came up with a better solution and very upfront with out losing the front page videos or the treads. With this change I have say I cant believe a website like Wargirl is not even MENTION. She did send it to this flamegoat. As a sample for what it can look like if somebody from CURSE puts a little effort.

     Do you people not use the internet? Like 90% of pages are white ... I feel like I'm listening to a bunch of 5 year old whine about having to take a nap or something.
     Yes and No.
    Many websites have white backgrounds, this is true. The usual issue is the effective page usage is not as high here, leading to more of the background showing then it should.
    For example, the page navigation could have a non white background. The background to our avatars/left section of posts could be non white, drawing more attention to it.
    Furthermore, as is all too common to pages now a days, the site is using a fixed width, which means you get nice white sidebars, which are wasted space.
    If i wanted a far better setup, while preserving the white background, I would eliminate as much dead space as possible, and make all navigable/clickable elements have a non white background. This provides a good contrast, drawing people's attention to the actual content, and clearly indicating separation of elements and deadspace.
    Posted in: General Chat
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    posted a message on [SC2mod]Blizzard Enforcement: Rise is now operational (March. 10th update)

    Very nice. Can't get the link to work (though it may be just me).

    Posted in: General Chat
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    posted a message on High Ground Advantage
    Quote from DrSuperEvil >>

    I have experimented with the Location Compare Cliff Level validator and it seems to have been changed by blizzard at some point.   The value is now the cliff slot with 0 being deep canyon, 1 being the lowest playable cliff, 2 being the middle cliff level and 3 being the highest.   The greater/less than logic is absolute and not relative to the unit.   Inserting a unit as the other unit makes the logic purely comparative of the cliff level the two units are on and ignores the value.   I found the best solution is to use equals logic and then 9-16 combine validators with one for the target and one for the caster.

     

    There is also the Unit Compare Height and Z validator as an alternative.

     

    I will post a demo map of the Location Compare Cliff Level validator logic as soon as the file size limit is boosted

     Probably could simplify those combine validators with condition validators, but I would have to see what logic blocks you are using.
    Posted in: Data
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