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Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291742] Sun, 09 October 2011 12:00 Go to next message
Chessman

 
Messages:7
Registered:October 2011
Location: Noord-Holland
As all of us I have been a long time squad-based strategy games and Ja2 is by far the best game of this ilk. Ja2 vanilla was a great game and certainly Ja2 1.13 has greatly improved it. The game certainly has become more challenging. But there are a few things I'd like to point out (So someone can show me how to simply edit it in the settings^^)

Pro's
Massive counterattacks, well connected with her threats! Being attacked by 60 guys (DCA) or 40+ (3rd Sam) is fun!
Suppression fire and extensive use of snipers certainly makes tactical more challenging.

Con's
I know this is probably cursing in the community: But tons of guns is just overkill.

BUGS!
I trained Gumpy (0 mec) to 20+ mec.. let him repair for a few days but he didn't repair a thing.
Tony has an abysmal collection. I know that in reality Bobby Ray should have easier acces to guns, but this is definitely a change from Vanilla. This should be tweakable (I could have missed it, but I can't find this setting).
Some guns act odd (because they have not been balanced with the NCTH)


My recommendations (worth nothing considering I have no contributions at all to offer)

Guns:
- Reweighing the vanilla guns
- Reweigh vanilla Ammo req's. Your starting SMG simply can't be reloaded until it's obsolete. I'd rather start with a 9mm mp5 Smile
- A limited "Tons of guns" which just adds a few mainstream weapons
- An extra XML with everything and the kitchen sink for the gun-lovers.

This would make keep some consistency for the main trunk. As Ja 2 1.13 is a skeleton which can be fleshed out by mods I don't see the need for adding guns every release (but that's just me), cutting it loose as a selfsustained mod seems cleaner.

NCTH
- A few inconsistency with "non-scoped" action aside, it seems to work well.
- I'd say that for game balance it could use a slight accuracy reduction (10% Single action, 25% burst/auto). I know that at the ranges portrayed we should accept this carnage, but it's a splatterfest right now.

STOMP
- Keep it close to the original (vanilla) settings. If only for game balance.

NIS
- Not my cup of tea, but it's easy to disable^^

Weather effects
- Ugly! (but that's life I guess!)
- More importantly; the sight penalties are to stringent. It's a breeze to rip through a ton of enemies in a storm.
- Extended ears are not penalized enough! They should not outrange optical due to environment noise (I'm hardly an expert so correct me if I'm wrong^^).


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291743] Sun, 09 October 2011 12:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gorro der GrĂ¼ne

 
Messages:1469
Registered:March 2009
Location: Broadwurschd-City
1) I never was attacked by 60 guys (DCA) it always was some 200+.

perhaps You should state the level You play


2) You are not forced to play tons of guns


3) this was a brabblepost (Yours not mine)
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291754] Sun, 09 October 2011 17:29 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Chessman

 
Messages:7
Registered:October 2011
Location: Noord-Holland
1) Experienced
2) Actually I'm forced not to as the amount of guns in "tons of guns" is insane. There is no balance and it's filled with obscurity (gun adicts ahoy). Is 1.13 a gun mod or is it a framework for other mods?
3. Thank you for your candid opinion. Odd enough you agree with the NCTH criticism yet are closed to any other criticism. Note that I don't claim any authority, I just give some feedback. I'm going with the opinion that feedback is welcome Wink
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291755] Sun, 09 October 2011 17:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lockie

 
Messages:3788
Registered:February 2006
Location: Scotland
For those who have made mods , feedback is essential . Gorro is nothing if not candid ..... Smile


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291761] Sun, 09 October 2011 19:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Headhunter

 
Messages:265
Registered:November 2009
Location: Sweden
You know you don't have to select "Tons of Guns" right? Wink
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291767] Sun, 09 October 2011 21:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sandro

 
Messages:421
Registered:November 2008
Location: Mars
Chessman
STOMP
- Keep it close to the original (vanilla) settings. If only for game balance.
Uhm... so you found vanilla traits balanced? Smile STOMP first aim was actually game balance.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291772] Mon, 10 October 2011 00:44 Go to previous messageGo to next message
KEN C

 
Messages:248
Registered:May 2007
Location: Aberdeen Washington USA
1.13 started as a mod platform. Notice all the mods produced in the first years. NOW it has morphed into nothing more than a gun mod. All you have to do is ask and someone will draw a picture of your favorite gun no matter how obscure, obsolete, irrevelent, futuristic, outlandish it may be. Then wham it is in the game!
When was the last senario mod produced? Not for more than 3 or 4 years now. Now its all about making the game more complicated not gameplay, immersion, or storyline. There are so many adjustments to be made just to be able to play the game I do not know why any new person would bother. Realism Bah! true to vanilla? Everyone has thier own view. And those who Whine the loudest or know how to code................enough!
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291774] Mon, 10 October 2011 01:07 Go to previous messageGo to next message
DepressivesBrot

 
Messages:3698
Registered:July 2009
There was a wave of gun-adding that created the 1400-ish Items.xml entries, but I think it's pretty much over. A quick check of the SVN log revealed a total of 9 guns added in the last 3 years, the newest of them one and a half years ago. The only ones that add guns nowadays are wil and smeagol for their respective mods.
I think we left the 'Add ALL the guns' stage and concentrate on shiny features now.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291778] Mon, 10 October 2011 05:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
KEN C

 
Messages:248
Registered:May 2007
Location: Aberdeen Washington USA
I hope "we" get over shiny features soon and get onto scenario.
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291867] Tue, 11 October 2011 22:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Pyro

 
Messages:11
Registered:April 2005
Location: Slovenia
I apologize if this has been debated already, but I installed the new 1.13 and the enemy AI seems to be broken. They mostly just run back and forth and engage only up close. I barely get shot at even when doing frontal assault.

I tried ordinary 1.13 and the UC hybrid, same thing.

Am I doing something wrong?
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291868] Tue, 11 October 2011 22:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
usrbid

 
Messages:1522
Registered:December 2008
No, that's normal, it means that they can't see you, otherwise they would try to shoot at you.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291871] Tue, 11 October 2011 23:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Pyro

 
Messages:11
Registered:April 2005
Location: Slovenia
Wait what? The enemy can't see my merc who is standing up, in broad daylight, right in front of them, 15 tiles away, firing his gun at another enemy? Smile

I even tried turning the tunnel vision off and increasing base sight range, to no effect.

EDIT:
Using vanilla settings it works normally, 1.13 screws it up.

[Updated on: Tue, 11 October 2011 23:10] by Moderator

Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291885] Wed, 12 October 2011 02:29 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sandro

 
Messages:421
Registered:November 2008
Location: Mars
Which version do you use specifically?


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #291897] Wed, 12 October 2011 09:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Pyro

 
Messages:11
Registered:April 2005
Location: Slovenia
Sandro
Which version do you use specifically?

ja2v1.13-update-4552-EN

Also tried UC hybrid version as described here:
http://www.ja-galaxy-forum.com/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=287147#Post287147
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292095] Fri, 14 October 2011 23:29 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Pyro

 
Messages:11
Registered:April 2005
Location: Slovenia
I think I found the problem. The enemies apparently won't engage if their weapons are out of range.

I don't know if this is intentional, but it really breaks the game, especially in the early stages. I cleared the Drassen airport by lining up my guys into a firing squad and blasting away with handguns. the enemies mostly just jogged around waiting to get hit. In the older 1.13 versions I would get slaughtered or at least badly wounded by such approach.

It probably gets better later on due to longer range weapons, but it is still a problem.

Is there any way to modify this? Increasing weapon range across the board does the trick, but that is not really a solution since it kinda breaks the balance.
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292110] Sat, 15 October 2011 01:18 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sandro

 
Messages:421
Registered:November 2008
Location: Mars
I may look into it soon. I wonder what feature made this to happen. Do you use NCTH?


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292125] Sat, 15 October 2011 08:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
usrbid

 
Messages:1522
Registered:December 2008
Pyro
I think I found the problem. The enemies apparently won't engage if their weapons are out of range.


It is true that enemies without a weapon will act rather strange, e.g. mostly try to run to the sector border and leave.

However most handguns have a range of somewhere 10 to 12 tiles early in the game. The sight range is roughly 26 tiles under ideal conditions. I believe any gun can be fired up to double its recommended range, making this 20 to 24 tiles early in the game. As a result most enemies should try to take "lucky" shots at you almost as soon as they can see you. (However I am not sure if NCTH changed the default behavior of double the gun range.)


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292126] Sat, 15 October 2011 09:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Pyro

 
Messages:11
Registered:April 2005
Location: Slovenia
Sandro
I may look into it soon. I wonder what feature made this to happen. Do you use NCTH?

I'm not sure, whatever the default in the newest official version is. How can I turn it off or at least check?

Dieter

It is true that enemies without a weapon will act rather strange, e.g. mostly try to run to the sector border and leave.

They do have ranged weapons.

Dieter

However most handguns have a range of somewhere 10 to 12 tiles early in the game. The sight range is roughly 26 tiles under ideal conditions. I believe any gun can be fired up to double its recommended range, making this 20 to 24 tiles early in the game. As a result most enemies should try to take "lucky" shots at you almost as soon as they can see you. (However I am not sure if NCTH changed the default behavior of double the gun range.)

That is the problem, they should shoot but they don't. Sometimes they even aim at my merc one turn, the next turn they just run back and forth. When I doubled the range of all weapons they started to behave roughly as one would expect.

[Updated on: Sat, 15 October 2011 09:12] by Moderator

Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292133] Sat, 15 October 2011 13:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sam Hotte

 
Messages:1995
Registered:March 2009
Location: Middle of Germany
NCTH can be toggled in the game options. Should be on option's 2nd page somthing like "use new targeting system".
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292142] Sat, 15 October 2011 15:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Pyro

 
Messages:11
Registered:April 2005
Location: Slovenia
Yep, turning NCTH off seems to help. Too bad, I rather like the cursors and everything.
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292146] Sat, 15 October 2011 16:44 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sandro

 
Messages:421
Registered:November 2008
Location: Mars
I see, so it's what I thought - the NCTH probably messes the AI estimated attack success probability.

This has to be fixed.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292153] Sat, 15 October 2011 20:07 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wanne (aka RoWa21)

 
Messages:1974
Registered:October 2005
Location: Austria
we have to inform chrisl, he is the one who has knowledge of ncth.
or sandro do you want to take a look Wink

[Updated on: Sat, 15 October 2011 20:07] by Moderator



Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292154] Sat, 15 October 2011 20:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
tazpn

 
Messages:99
Registered:December 2007
Location: CA, USA
I have a change that I will be using in my game after looking at the code.

Basically, in AICalcChanceToHitGun the change to hit is reduced to zero if the AI exceeds the gun range by 10% and is only 50% when in that range. With pistols I'm not sure that's even an additional square.

I've changed that code to use externalize the parameters to the CTHConstants.ini file. The result is no change in how actual code runs but now those hard coded parameters should be modifiable.

Patch files for base repository and data here (I'll send RoWa21 a PM with this info if you want to include).
http://www.mediafire.com/?69o6s94qddlabps

I added a feature that will use a gradual reduction in chance to hit so that at close to the max range you have little drop off but when you reach the max range you will have the full reduction.

I think I will try these settings which I think will still allow AI to try shooting when at twice the gun range but have a full 75% reduction in chance to hit at the full range.

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Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292155] Sat, 15 October 2011 21:07 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sandro

 
Messages:421
Registered:November 2008
Location: Mars
tazpn:
Have you tested it?
I am a little suspicious it may not solve the issue.

Pyro:
When you turned NCTH off, what change was in AI behaviour? Did they just start shooting or did they charge closer (and then shoot)?


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292163] Sat, 15 October 2011 21:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
tazpn

 
Messages:99
Registered:December 2007
Location: CA, USA
I've done testing to try and ensure it does no harm. Whether it does any good, I've done some testing but its a difficult one for me to setup a map that consistently reproduces the problem to test with. The save I have been testing with the enemy mercs are indeed firing their guns when I use my altered settings where they would not without them. The enemy cannot hit the broadside of a barn most times but they are at least trying which I thought was half the problem. I'm not saying this is a perfect fix more like this is something I am going to try and if you like you can try as well.

I dont have any ready saves where they are running around being completely indecisive. My major concern here is that they may stop trying to advance because the CTH is non-zero when outside of effective range and they will try to shoot. I think they should probably try to advance until they are in effective range but still try to reserve enough AP to fire at least once when not in effective range.

The problem I have is that my mercs can still hit when outside of the effective range (which does not use this change) but the enemy will usually not even try.

Edit: First I set my settings above wrong, not the patch though. Should have been 0.75 instead of 0.25 to get more reduction at distance and 0.9 isn't too bad in limited testing.
After some more testing, the enemy is more than willing to fire at 2x the max range of the gun without NCTH but will charge in open fields with current NCTH. My settings have them firing at 2x the gun range but not advancing in most cases. And they are having more success hitting at that range with those weapons. Admittedly this may not be the intent of NCTH so I'll leave that to the maintainer.

[Updated on: Sat, 15 October 2011 22:42] by Moderator

Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292172] Sat, 15 October 2011 23:18 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wanne (aka RoWa21)

 
Messages:1974
Registered:October 2005
Location: Austria
@all: I have committed the changes to the official and the development source trunk.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292180] Sun, 16 October 2011 01:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
tazpn

 
Messages:99
Registered:December 2007
Location: CA, USA
Now a more controversial change and perhaps unrelated now since its not in NCTH code. In line with my comment above I tried to make soldiers more likely to make a partial move toward the target if the chance to hit is really, really low and out of effective gun range but still reserving enough AP to make a partial shot. I also allowed this on Cunning soldiers instead of just aggressives figuring that target is in sight they are more likely to fight.

This with the other change has at least made them more aggressive and less likely to run in circles when armed with pistols and has actually made them quite a threat again. Not crazy about the implementation since I'd like a more accurate range check and AP calculation since AP to fire will change after movement. I figure the increased CTH by getting closer will counteract the cost to move.

Anyway food for thought and here is that change if anyone is interested. Certainly needs playtesting before being included anywhere but I'll keep it in my games.

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Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292185] Sun, 16 October 2011 02:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wanne (aka RoWa21)

 
Messages:1974
Registered:October 2005
Location: Austria
@tazpn: Anything that makes the AI more smarter and agressive is welcome. So I put that also in the svn source.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292190] Sun, 16 October 2011 06:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sandro

 
Messages:421
Registered:November 2008
Location: Mars
That is much better (and real) solution. As RoWa sais - anything that makes them more agressive is good. Good job.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292195] Sun, 16 October 2011 06:58 Go to previous messageGo to next message
usrbid

 
Messages:1522
Registered:December 2008
Sandro
I see, so it's what I thought - the NCTH probably messes the AI estimated attack success probability.


One thing I noticed when playing Horn of Aftica on Tais' latest unstable SCI is, that my mercs almost always start with zero percent to hit. Even with a gun with a huge range, like the G3, aiming at the torso of an enemy very close e.g. 13 tiles.

Even spending all aim clicks I rarely got above 50 percent. Once I reached 86% with an AK from 1 tile away, that was the best I got. Then I tried a 3 round aimed burst, all bullets missed. I was better off closing in with Bull and using knuckle dusters, two hits and the enemy was down.

I can see that if the enemy AI uses the to hit percentage to decide what to do, that the AI behavior would be completely screwed up.

You know how this feels guys? Have you ever taken Gasket into combat in version 2085? Where you spend aim clicks and the CTH suddenly jumps from zero percent to 50 percent. It feels like that, like the marksmanship of the merc is really low. Almost like the code ignores MRK or doesn't take all of it into the calculation.

[Updated on: Sun, 16 October 2011 07:02] by Moderator



Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292203] Sun, 16 October 2011 10:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wanne (aka RoWa21)

 
Messages:1974
Registered:October 2005
Location: Austria
@dieter: you are talking about ncth, or?


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292206] Sun, 16 October 2011 11:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Chessman

 
Messages:7
Registered:October 2011
Location: Noord-Holland
Okay, I have read and read and now it all comes a bit into perspective.

My few criticisms on 1.13 is just barking at the wrong tree. The idea of a basic version with completely toggleable mods is the SMP idea (god knows how that pans out). 1.13 contains both togleable and non-toglleable additions. Considering that's the way things are that's simply a fact I accept.

So what remains are the bugs, which I will check, get a save and add in the appropriate forum.

Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292208] Sun, 16 October 2011 12:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Pyro

 
Messages:11
Registered:April 2005
Location: Slovenia
Sandro

Pyro:
When you turned NCTH off, what change was in AI behaviour? Did they just start shooting or did they charge closer (and then shoot)?

They started to behave as in the older 1.13 versions. Usually they charge a couple of tiles forward(if they are far away) and start shooting. Sometimes they still run back and forth as if they don't know what to do, but drastically less than with NCTH. I suspect that happens if they are more than 2x weapon range away, but I'm not quite sure.

I gave a slight increase on global weapon ranges and it seems a bit better.
Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292214] Sun, 16 October 2011 13:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
usrbid

 
Messages:1522
Registered:December 2008
RoWa21
@dieter: you are talking about ncth, or?


Yes, I am playing Tais' latest unstable SCI with NCTH, I posted more details in the Horn of Africa thread.

The percentages are from pressing the 'F' key. The example was with a G3, with bipod and battle scope, using Steroid prone, enemy was 13 tiles away, hovering the aim cursor over the standing enemy torso, with no aim clicks, 'F' reads out zero percent. This was at night and Steroid was able to see the enemy, meaning the enemy showed in color, not a dark grey shape. Spending all aim clicks I got up to 50 percent. In this situation the CTH would have been so high in the old system that you would try to go for a head shot.

Another thing I noticed, when I auto fire short bursts, maybe 3-5 rounds, the bullets seem to fly past the enemy all along the same line, all of them missing. I saw the enemies have the same problem. It used to be that with e.g. a 50% CTH and firing 5 bullets, you would get something like shot #1 50%, #2 45%, #3 40% etc. and you would have hit maybe 2-3 times depending on luck, but even with 2 hits the enemy would end up dead.

With the new system Barry shot a 3 round burst at an enemy from 6 tiles away and all bullets zipped right past the enemy. Which wasn't a problem because when the enemy shot back, probably spending all APs on auto fire, about 15 bullets zipped right past Barry. The two repeated that twice, suppressing each other and lowering each other's APs. It was quite comical actually.

[Updated on: Sun, 16 October 2011 13:51] by Moderator



Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292215] Sun, 16 October 2011 13:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
DepressivesBrot

 
Messages:3698
Registered:July 2009
I don't know if/how much they changed the items for HoA, but using a 7x battlescope at 13 tiles is a decidedly bad idea under NCTH.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292216] Sun, 16 October 2011 13:54 Go to previous messageGo to next message
usrbid

 
Messages:1522
Registered:December 2008
Sorry DB, I added more info in my previous post.

Does a battle scope also affect CTH when no aim clicks are used? I mean just hovering your cursor over the enemy gave me zero percent.

One thing I noticed about Horn of Africa, the accuracy of guns is super high, for example AKs have 63 or something like that, maybe this is messing with the NCTH system?


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292219] Sun, 16 October 2011 14:26 Go to previous messageGo to next message
DepressivesBrot

 
Messages:3698
Registered:July 2009
I think the % chance on pressing F didn't include the whole formula and is basically borderline useless, I don't know if that was changed later though. The only 'reliable' percent chance you'd be able to get out of NCTH anyway would be the ratio between target area and one of the circles.

First shot shouldn't use optics, it's a snapshot.

The accuracy seems legit, it's a 0-100 range.


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292227] Sun, 16 October 2011 16:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Wil473

 
Messages:2826
Registered:September 2004
Location: Canada
DepressivesBrot
I don't know if/how much they changed the items for HoA, but using a 7x battlescope at 13 tiles is a decidedly bad idea under NCTH.


A 10x Sniper Scope on a Desert Eagle (AFS/UC-1.13/DL-1.13) is another one in the counterproductive catagory. ChrisL went over the formular for calculating the penalty for being too close in one of the threads I started to gather information on re-balancing NCTH. Here I think: http://www.ja-galaxy-forum.com/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=290792#Post290792

EDIT: nope, found the exact post, related thread started by Knightofni: http://www.ja-galaxy-forum.com/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=291321#Post291321

[Updated on: Sun, 16 October 2011 16:23] by Moderator



Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292256] Sun, 16 October 2011 20:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sandro

 
Messages:421
Registered:November 2008
Location: Mars
Uhm a little unrelated question: How often do you guys experience an enemy soldier launching mortar? If ever?


Re: Commentary on Ja2 1.13[message #292258] Sun, 16 October 2011 21:15 Go to previous messageGo to previous message
Chessman

 
Messages:7
Registered:October 2011
Location: Noord-Holland
Sandro
Uhm a little unrelated question: How often do you guys experience an enemy soldier launching mortar? If ever?


Once when ambushed at night.

I'd say it was radioed in, but I admitted I reloaded as it triggered the C4 of my IMP. Instant wipeout Very Happy

[Updated on: Sun, 16 October 2011 21:16] by Moderator

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