Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this works??

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Mark_009_vn
Rank: PzB 39 anti tank rifle operator
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Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this works??

Post by Mark_009_vn » Fri Jul 08, 2011 2:03 pm

Well, I've been doing a massive hack that would contains completely revised units and COs, as well as sprite works, campaign map editing, and so on. And I'd like some opinion about my unit revisions, and the new metagame it creates.

Damage chart: http://i.imgur.com/qowkQ.png
IPS Patch, as requested: http://www.megaupload.com/?d=H4KQ33GM

Infantry: Cost 1500; Movement 2 (Mech); Fuel 30; Ammo 1
Note: Infantry now have a primary weapon that could lightly damage vehicle, but have only 1 ammo for it. The role of the infantry have slightly changed, due to the lowered defence, it is now much more subjected to 1 and 2 hit KO, combines with the lowered movement and higher cost, meat shileding with infantries is harder now. However, the damage it does makes up for that, and are now been used as some sort of support unit, to finish off crippling vehicles. They still consist of 30 to 50 % of your army.

Mech: Cost 4000; Movement 2 (Mech); Fuel 30; Ammo 2
Note: Slight changes with it's damage chart and cost. Mech spamming is now not possible as I'll explain later on.

Recon: Cost 4000; Movement 8 (Tyres); Fuel 80; Ammo 5; Range 1-2 (direct-indirect)
note: Recons now have a direct-indirect primary weapon (which means it could move and shoot 2 spaces away from it) that can only attack infantries and mechs. It's secondary attack cannot attack infantries, but can now attack vehicles with much success, it could actually win against tanks given that the tank is slightly damaged. Recons have massively changed in role, while it could still harass, it could not do it very well due to it's new found vulnerability to infantries (inf can do 40 damage against recons!), it is now used to provide support for infantries and mech, which will also provide cover for Recons when going in packs. Recons, when spammed along with mechs and infantries, could wreak absolute havoc, that build order was known to be so extremely dangerous, it could beat you even if you have the first turn advantage in small maps. Even so, massing recons along with the usual inf-tank-artillery build usually have a high chance of slowing it down or even possibly stop it, that is if you know how to keep the production of recons without sacrificing the production of artilleries and tanks.

Md Tank: Cost 12000; Movement 4 (Tread); Ammo 6; Range 1-2 (direct-indirect)
Note: Md Tanks have now became a direct-indirect, which means it could move and shoot 2 spaces away from it. It's defense is the highest in the hack, but it's offense is also the lowest. It is usually used to weaken enemy units and then lets others finish it, in emergency purposes, it could also be used as a meatshield, a Md tank in city is nearly irremovable without the use of artillery and neotanks. It became some sort of Niche unit now, 1 to 2 seems to be just enough for any purposes. Md Tanks also hard counters pure Mech spam when used with Recons, and could possibly counters inf-mech-recon spam.

Tank: Cost 8000; Movement 6 (Foot. Yes, you heard that right, foot. It could cross forests unimpeded and have a mountain restriction of 4, can't cross rivers though); Fuel 70; Ammo 12
Note: Tanks now have a far higher maneuverability at the cost of being 80/100 (literally). Due to the greater mobility it had, it is generally the most versatile unit in the game and are still the main stay of your army. Tank's lowered damage means that you're more likely to survive a tank attack than ever.

APC: Cost 10000; Movement 6 (Tread); Fuel 70
Note: My attempt of making fuel and ammo less gimmicky, doesn't work at all.

Artillery: Cost 8000; Movement 5 (Foot. Similar to tanks); Fuel 50; Ammo 9; Range 4-4
Note: It's firing range is like this:
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Artillery has now became a more skillful unit, it has also became more niche, only about 2 to 4 artillery is enough for a small map, any more and you risk being exploited by tanks. Spamming artillery-infantry is quite painful, seeing that unless you're in a good choke with 10 to 20 infantries to triple wall them, you'll never be able to position them correctly. Also, once the meat wall have been exploited, you're screwed due to the blind spot. Good luck spamming inf-artillery with anyone except Andy.

Rocket: Cost 15000; Movement 4 (Tyres); Fuel 50; Ammo 8; Range 2-6 (instead of 3-5)
Note: Rockets now have higher range at the cost of much lower damage. They're now more defensive driven than they used to be and became less niche.

Neotank: Cost 18000; Movement 6 (Tread); Fuel 99; Ammo 9
Note: Neotanks can now 1HKO alot of units even when it's damaged, however it's defenses are only a tad better than tanks. Very hard to use and underpowered in my opinion. i have no idea on how to balance it though.

Anti-Air: Cost 10500; Movement 6 (Tread); Fuel 60; Ammo 9
Note: AAs are now more similar to the original tank in vanilla (or more correctly, a combination of tank and AA). They're usually used as a substitution for tanks when firepower is better than mobility, and when you have a abundant of money. They're not very good when used at early game still, due to the fact that you'll produce much less infantries making it.

B-copter: Cost 10500; Movement 6 (Air); Fuel 50 (Uses 4 fuel per day like planes); Ammo 3
Note: It was unintentionally, but I made it similar to seaplanes. :roll:

Other air units and Missile: Ran out of ideas to balance them.
Sea units: They impact too little into the meta game to be bothered about.
Last edited by Mark_009_vn on Mon Jul 11, 2011 6:32 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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eliascpsells
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by eliascpsells » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:11 am

The artillery nerf seems bad to me. Enemy units could easily go too close or to far away for the artillery to shoot.
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Mark_009_vn
Rank: PzB 39 anti tank rifle operator
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Mark_009_vn » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:27 pm

According to the damage chart I've posted, you can see that artillery now deals far more damage than most land units, second to that of Neotanks. And it is also much more resistance to tank fire.

Also, the higher range means that you'll simply need one or two to completely cover the edge of your meat shield. It is actually one of the most dangerous unit in the hack, and literally who ever have more of it wins.
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Xenesis
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Xenesis » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:35 pm

I'm kind of concerned by the large price-hikes across the board for the low tier units - Even in plain AW2 the higher tiers of unit rarely got played beyond mopping up due to their cost and the fact that 'they're only one unit'.
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Mark_009_vn
Rank: PzB 39 anti tank rifle operator
Location: The Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant

Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Mark_009_vn » Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:23 pm

Xenesis wrote:I'm kind of concerned by the large price-hikes across the board for the low tier units - Even in plain AW2 the higher tiers of unit rarely got played beyond mopping up due to their cost and the fact that 'they're only one unit'.
I upped the price for low tier and lower the price for high tier mostly because of that. I don't want people to spam cheap units so often and instead considering on teching. However, the more expensive units are even harder to use now, due to the massive changes that I did (Like the fact that tanks deals 44 damage to Neotanks, I don't even know why I did that).
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Narts
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Narts » Sat Jul 09, 2011 8:20 pm

So where's the playable version?

Surely you realise that such sweeping changes are impossible to evaluate without playtesting.

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Mark_009_vn
Rank: PzB 39 anti tank rifle operator
Location: The Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant

Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Mark_009_vn » Sat Jul 09, 2011 11:24 pm

As you wish.
http://www.megaupload.com/?d=LNXDGLWM

This hack is not even haft way finish, so some features of it has been wired to crash upon starting. Mostly because I don't want an information leakage. :arrr:
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Narts
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Narts » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:16 am

Ok I haven't had time to actually play the game with anyone (I'm not sure if anyone would even be interested in testing this with me) but I gave it a quick spin in FHQ mode and these are my impressions.

-The two mech movement infantry with 1500 cost and anti-vehicular attacks feels like the little bro of AW4 mech. It gives the game this slow and spammy feel, and with the weakened vehicles it's very hard to effectively punch holes in the mass of sluggishly advancing infantry, which, worst of all, doesn't need much vehicular support of its own to be able to punish units that come close.

-Recon has some ability to fight infantry and it doesn't have a natural predator since the tank has been nerfed so it seems like its low cost would make it the main vehicle unit to be spammed.

-Tank is ridiculously weak. It can't hold its own against neither inf nor recon what's the use for it lol?

-APC costing 10k... why? With slow infantry this unit would be needed more than ever... but not enough to justify the price tag.

-Artillery might still see some use despite the 8k price tag because of the spammy, stalemateish tempo of the game, but the 4-4 range is probably too crippling for it to be viable.

So in all it seems to me like this mod is about spamming lots of inf, some recon and maybe the occasional artillery or AA. It seems slow and boring, most of the changes are arbitrary and I don't see how it's supposed to be an improvement over vanilla. I liked kiwi's opposite "crap wars" philosophy better, of making infantry faster with 4 movement and lowering unit costs all across the board instead of making things more expensive. It had the effect of enlivening things up instead of bogging the game further down by making it even more defensive and slow than vanilla, like this one seems to do.

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Mark_009_vn
Rank: PzB 39 anti tank rifle operator
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Mark_009_vn » Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:17 am

Ok I haven't had time to actually play the game with anyone
I would, just don't know how.
-The two mech movement infantry with 1500 cost and anti-vehicular attacks feels like the little bro of AW4 mech. It gives the game this slow and spammy feel, and with the weakened vehicles it's very hard to effectively punch holes in the mass of sluggishly advancing infantry, which, worst of all, doesn't need much vehicular support of its own to be able to punish units that come close.
Actually, vehicle attacks now deals MUCH higher damage against infantries, tanks does 85 damage to inf instead of 75 (guaranteed 2 hit kill on cities without the need of luck), artilleries does 115 damage instead of 90 (guaranteed 1 hit kill on plains without luck), infs themselves now does 65 damage to other infs (it could 2 HKO infs on forests), mech does 75 damage, and Neo/AA does 150 damage. Infantries now drops like flies in this mod in my testing actually, due to the fact that it cannot survive a 2HKO, and it's 2 mech movement limits it's capability to micro around meatshields greatly. Also, spamming both Md tanks and Recons completely stops infantries.
-Recon has some ability to fight infantry and it doesn't have a natural predator since the tank has been nerfed so it seems like its low cost would make it the main vehicle unit to be spammed.
Recon's own predator is it's own prey, it could kill infantries, but infantries could also kill it easily. Also, the way I made the mod isn't based on counters, but instead on usage, like Recons were supposed to support foot soldiers, tanks were supposed to exploit enemy meat shields, Md tanks were supposed to use defensively, and so on. So it is best to keep that in mind. And yes, I do realized that recons is easy to spam. But it's only that spamable in order to combat mech and inf flood.
-Tank is ridiculously weak. It can't hold its own against neither inf nor recon what's the use for it lol?
Tanks deals more damage against infantries really, and trying to suicide infantries to tanks severely weakens your meat shield. I only nerf the damage tanks deals to other vehicles, giving it extra mobility in the process. It now have perfect movement and the ability to cross mountains, use it well and it might not be as ridiculously weak as you think.
-APC costing 10k... why? With slow infantry this unit would be needed more than ever... but not enough to justify the price tag.
I tried to make fuel and ammo less of a gimmick. Well, it didn't work at all, and I was too lazy to change the price tag of APCs. Sorry, will fix. :mrgreen:
-Artillery might still see some use despite the 8k price tag because of the spammy, stalemateish tempo of the game, but the 4-4 range is probably too crippling for it to be viable.
Artilleries sits behind meatshields and protect the edge of it. The 4 range actually be capable of overcoming it's huge blind spot in my testing, and it makes checking the range of multiple artilleries nearly impossible. In my testing, artilleries have been so effective, the game become a race of whoever have 3 artilleries first wins.
So in all it seems to me like this mod is about spamming lots of inf, some recon and maybe the occasional artillery or AA. It seems slow and boring, most of the changes are arbitrary and I don't see how it's supposed to be an improvement over vanilla. I liked kiwi's opposite "crap wars" philosophy better, of making infantry faster with 4 movement and lowering unit costs all across the board instead of making things more expensive. It had the effect of enlivening things up instead of bogging the game further down by making it even more defensive and slow than vanilla, like this one seems to do.
Well, the slow pace is actually intentional, the defensiveness depends on situations. And the cost... Well I'm not really sure what to do with it. Anyway, you're just checking on inf, recons, tanks, and artilleries? And not the other units? The mod was actually designed to fully utilize the unit list, and units were designed to work with each other to achieve greater success.

EDIT: How about if I do some cost alterations:

tanks cost 7000
artilleries cost 7000
Md tanks cost 9000
Neo cost 16000
Rockets cost 13000
AA and B-copters cost 9000

Would these be any beter?
Last edited by Mark_009_vn on Mon Jul 11, 2011 6:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Mark_009_vn
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Mark_009_vn » Mon Jul 11, 2011 4:23 pm

Updated the IPS patch with the cost changes, along with a Recon defense nerf. Since thanks to Nart I've just discovered how ridiculous it is (6 months worth of testing couldn't allow me to figured that out, Man I felt stupid).
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Narts
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Narts » Tue Jul 12, 2011 2:22 am

Ok I haven't had time to actually play the game with anyone
I would, just don't know how.
Look at the topic below this one.
Well, the slow pace is actually intentional, the defensiveness depends on situations. And the cost... Well I'm not really sure what to do with it. Anyway, you're just checking on inf, recons, tanks, and artilleries? And not the other units? The mod was actually designed to fully utilize the unit list, and units were designed to work with each other to achieve greater success.
Years of testing on Custom Wars and other AW variants has shown that slowness and defensiveness is almost never a good thing in AW, unless you specifically like games that drag on and on without conclusion and end up as stalemates. I focused on the low tech units since I only gave it a quick spin and based on conventional wisdom more expensive units are usually not worth saving for in normal play no matter how strong they are individually. The unit metagame in AW almost always revolves around the few most inexpensive units since they're the ones that can be spammed in any considerable numbers. In any case it was only testing against myself and you can't really base any hard conclusions on that but I think I already highlighted the most obvious problem points for you.

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Mark_009_vn
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Re: Advanced Wars unit balancing/remastering. Would this wor

Post by Mark_009_vn » Tue Jul 12, 2011 12:03 pm

Years of testing on Custom Wars and other AW variants has shown that slowness and defensiveness is almost never a good thing in AW, unless you specifically like games that drag on and on without conclusion and end up as stalemates.
Well, I saw that AW is a little too unforgiving in the mistakes you made, so I wanted to be a little slower so compensate that. Of course I never do like stalemates, but I do like games that usually last for 2 to 3 hours. :oops:
I focused on the low tech units since I only gave it a quick spin and based on conventional wisdom more expensive units are usually not worth saving for in normal play no matter how strong they are individually. The unit metagame in AW almost always revolves around the few most inexpensive units since they're the ones that can be spammed in any considerable numbers. In any case it was only testing against myself and you can't really base any hard conclusions on that but I think I already highlighted the most obvious problem points for you.
So does the price changes and the recon defense nerf I suggested above works? I even updated the IPS link in case it needs testing.
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