Anacreon Era III Discussion Thread

General discussion for the game Anacreon
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TheBugKing
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Sat May 26, 2018 3:57 pm

My my my... Yes indeed, dark times are come. Pray I save your Home World for last. :evil:

Fight or flee, ready or not, here I come. Pray... the galaxy comes to an end before my fleets arrives.

None will be spared, none will endure, like it or not the Rise of the Bugzzzzzzz is at hand; and they shall sweep forthwith across the expanse to cleanse the Galaxy of the impure beings whom cling to it's rocky orbs.

The Bug King
Fire, Fire, Fire;
Streaks of golden light,
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TheBugKing
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Mon May 28, 2018 12:45 am

So, I'm confused.

By the rules of war, in reality, not in here. Did I win or did I lose our war?

I stopped your attacks, and am still up and running around causing grief, but you guys very effectively dismantled my entire empire, which was not strong as I have only spent about 3 hours on here in the past 2 weeks.

I can counterattack still, and have the necessary will and manpower to rebuild my empire, but who won ?

By this game I can keep attacking you until I'm dead, but that doesn't reflect reality. In reality I would have had to stop you two from getting to my empire at all, but you ravaged it.
However, Technically only the trade routes in the empire core were broken and I only lost my colonies. Also, I have retained the ability to defend myself from further attacks and am able to counterattack while maintaining a siege on Newbie's northern frontier while kicking Soviet around like dried out sandcastle.

So... How can we say who won? Or does it reflect reality and no one won, it was merely a battle and the war rages on? I do hope you all take me up on this question, it is intriguing to me.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

For those of you not present:

Imperium bequeathed to me some large force. I attacked Soviet, destroying his empire. He has one SC and his Homeworld left. I attacked Newbies holds within the Light Nebula in the midst of the Rift. I attacked Grome Collective holdings within the north.
Grome Collective and Saxophone Traders Union staged a counter attack. They took out all of my colonies and destroyed all of the trade routes within the core empire (the controlled space of my Home World). Newbie retook many of his worlds that I had taken in a counter attack of his own.
However, I stopped there attacks. I was able to continue my initial destruction of Soviet, and also took many of Newbie's fleets and worlds within the the light nebula.

So a break down of that in another way:
Day 1-- Victory for 03 in the North and the Rift against Grome Collective, Newbie, and Soviet

Beginning of Day 2-- Victory for Newbie in the Rift, Victory for Grome Collective and STU
End of Day 2-- GC/STU alliance attack on 03 has reached sustainable end to counter attack, 03 victory against Newbie's counterattack in the Rift, 03 stops advancement of GC/STU alliance into the 03 core. 03 retains nearly all inner worlds, but without trade routes, and looses all colonies. 03 begins counter attack against Grom Collective.

Does anyone think someone has won or lost? or is it a viable and on going war?
Fire, Fire, Fire;
Streaks of golden light,
Rays of cosmic waves crashing through still dead night.

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--Imperator--
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Mon May 28, 2018 1:27 am

Ha, nice. Looks like you finally decided to put the Imperial Fleet to good use exterminating xeno scum.

It's the end of the Era, so I assume you're going for Armageddon. Then the survival of your empire isn't exactly a priority and as long as you have at least one sector capital left, or can keep establishing new ones faster than your enemies can capture old ones, then your fleet can continue rampaging across the galaxy.

Who is the victor? No one's "won" per se, as I see it the situation since Imperium's abdication sounds more like general wanton destruction all around. Which was of course the intended goal of gifting such an immensely powerful fleet to a known galactic menace to throw said galaxy into utter chaos. Although remember you're on the clock as the Imperial ships will attrition faster than you can replace them (or capture more?), and it seems you didn't start the assault on Day One of abdication so that "large force" has dwindled quite a bit. And I wonder if Aurora still stands? Perhaps you're leaving them for last as they can't attack you without risking social order. Good work, ha!

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Project Terminus: An extension for Anacreon 3.

TheBugKing
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Mon May 28, 2018 2:33 pm

We yes, you are correct. However, I am asking the question under a real life scenario. If THAT situation had been real, who would have been called the victor or would it just be the beginning of the war? I don't know.
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AdmiralZo
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Tue May 29, 2018 3:56 am

TheBugKing wrote:
Mon May 28, 2018 2:33 pm
We yes, you are correct. However, I am asking the question under a real life scenario. If THAT situation had been real, who would have been called the victor or would it just be the beginning of the war? I don't know.
In real life the only factor that really determines who wins a war is who surrenders first.

In our case, neither of us have surrendered. Your core worlds may be dismantled and your economy left at a stand still, but your forces are still roaming the galaxy and ready to strike. So yes, it is only the beginning of the war. It is not over until our troops set foot on your capital. :lol:

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Tue May 29, 2018 7:07 pm

I would value the input of the participants in the current war with regards to my proposal for changes to strategic combat in Era 4.

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Finnian
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Sat Jun 02, 2018 9:58 am

:shock: the era is ending with the most unexpected war with the most incredible alliance
IN GEORGE WE TRUST

TheBugKing
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Sun Jun 03, 2018 3:28 am

Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote:
Tue May 29, 2018 7:07 pm
I would value the input of the participants in the current war with regards to my proposal for changes to strategic combat in Era 4.

That.... that is fantastic, you are genius. This would make the game we are playing impossible. The level of changes that you are describing are greater than the shift to the era of Jumpbeacons and Minotaurs.

I love the idea of the ground forces changes. You could feasibly have a "front" and people would have need of staging posts for concentration of forces. For quick incursions or to support on going wars. I already have noticed a shift in our game play toward staging posts and outpost type strategies, so I think this really moves us in a good direction. I think, by doing things the way you suggested, it would give more restrictions to an attacker. This would would allow for more point type warfare, which is more like what warfare is generally about. In real war, warfare begins at the individual level and scales up from there, then you have a series of objectives that culminate into your larger war. However, the way things are right now, you don't get that dynamic. What we have is essentially a single monster fleet taking on another single monster fleet, one at a time. Not only is this tedious, it doesn't feel like war. However, the changes that you mention would allow a more bottom up approach, layer on layer, that is more natural to the way we really fight.

I think your idea brings the importance of a war back down to the planet and brings the importance of it's territory into focus. At the moment there is an increasing disconnection to the planets and the territory.

I will elaborate:
As an empire begins, the focus is on the Capital and SC's and building infrastructure in order to build the war machine, but what happens in the late game stage is that the empire's fleet is so large it becomes detached from the empire that built it. What we end up having is someone who has a fleet and also has an empire, but what we need is someone who has an empire who has a military force. The difference in wording is subtle, but the reality of the two are drastically different. Someone who has a fleet and an empire can afford to lose the empire and keep the fleet, Auroran Hegemony and myself both do this. Hegemony simply rebuilds his empire, I throw my empire to the wind favoring the maneuverability of my fleet to being tied down to my empire. In either case the war becomes a 1 v 1 competition between the fleets, which are directly tied to the WU output of the empire that built it. That is not war and it lacks most of the dynamics of war.

However, implementing your idea brings the importance of the empire into focus by making someone have an empire and a military force. The battles will be able to become focused onto one planet or a series of planets for footholds in that territory. If fighting is prolonged then the defending force can create walls and layers of defenses. Such as manning a vulnerable area and potentially being able to defend that area. If the attacking party cannot commit their entire ground force, but the defending party can use their entire force to defend, defending will be a viable thing. This means that one may actually feel that defending a random production world may be of strategic importance if that world is in some sort of choke point or vulnerable, albiet important, position. If the individual worlds become important, which they would be when your army gets stuck there, then we will have much more strategic viability built into the maps.

I think the gist of what I am trying to get at is that at the moment, no matter how hard we try, we fight very one dimensional wars that are not very interesting and very time consuming. But if we can get George to implement your idea, then game importance will shift away from being centered on the production and use of a single large fleet and toward the territory of the worlds held by an individual empire. THAT would be a game worth playing.

News Feed:

I really like the idea of a reported in-game galactic news, perhaps there can be a "broadcast station" built on the the homeworld when you get to a certain level and then you can have all the galactic news. I think that overwhelming a newplayer on day one with "Hegemony was just attacked with 25% of the galactic force" would not make any sense and just add to the clutter of things they needed to figure out. Making it something that can be destroyed.... would be interesting. Imagine the shock of losing that amount of information. I could see players like STU putting a lot of importance on something like that. An interesting aside to this line of thinking would be a ship that gathers information within a 500 ly or something, you are allowed 5 per empire at any given time. They would report the news to your empire feed, messages such "Imerpium is now building Gorgos Starships", "Imerium fleet of 15 M is heading NW from Deusoldorf 6 to OO 3422".
Maybe then the Galactic News Feed would be a buildable structure one designated SC at Tech 10. This way it has the ability to be destroyed and is separate from the Home world defense build up we see normally. With the Galactic News structure, you would be able to build 15 mobile news units and also have reports on every single empire the way you described. Otherwise, news is restricted to what you gather from the 5 mobile units.

Attrition:

I do wonder if there should be a limit to the number of ships someone can build. I enjoy the current attrition limits, it is altogether interesting and difficult to overcome. It brings a lot of challenges with it that I find peculiar, but having a nice dynamic. However, I wonder if we should suggest tampering with it. What if the small empire of Space faring tech level and below have no attrition limit; then a steady grade that increases attrition until reaching the Post-industrial, giving it an attrition rate of 50%? That would be a high penalty given the speed of starfleets. It would make things very interesting in terms of defense/attack. It would make the game incredibly unstable for empires to be as large as they are now, 1200+ in this era (how big will the get in era 4?). That is my real motive: Limiting the usability of giant fleets at a distance while increasing the ability to defend small areas of the map. Regional and local territory importance should be greater than the importance of a single massed fleet. If you are able to defend many small places well, then you will be able to defend your entire empire, not simply the sector capitals.
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Rays of cosmic waves crashing through still dead night.

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Sun Jun 03, 2018 6:17 pm

TheBugKing wrote:
Sun Jun 03, 2018 3:28 am
what happens in the late game stage is that the empire's fleet is so large it becomes detached from the empire that built it. What we end up having is someone who has a fleet and also has an empire, but what we need is someone who has an empire who has a military force. The difference in wording is subtle, but the reality of the two are drastically different. Someone who has a fleet and an empire can afford to lose the empire and keep the fleet, Auroran Hegemony and myself both do this. Hegemony simply rebuilds his empire, I throw my empire to the wind favoring the maneuverability of my fleet to being tied down to my empire. In either case the war becomes a 1 v 1 competition between the fleets, which are directly tied to the WU output of the empire that built it. That is not war and it lacks most of the dynamics of war.
This insight really sticks out to me. With the shift from jumpships to starships, the higher halfLife of all starship types has really become noticeable. In Era 3 I believe that we increased the halfLife for some starship classes in order to differentiate them from jumpships, but now we have a situation where a starship forces have a longer lifespan than the planets that build them, so fleet strength is an product of historic imperial economic power and only weakly tied to an empire's current state.
News Feed:

I really like the idea of a reported in-game galactic news, perhaps there can be a "broadcast station" built on the the homeworld when you get to a certain level and then you can have all the galactic news. I think that overwhelming a newplayer on day one with "Hegemony was just attacked with 25% of the galactic force" would not make any sense and just add to the clutter of things they needed to figure out.
I like the idea of gradually introducing players to the larger world in some game types, it pairs well with exploring the galaxy. However, right now I am opposed to not showing entering players the whole galactic map right away in a persistent game, because it privileges existing players over new ones, exploration is tedious, and the exploration mechanic practically disappears once the map is explored. Exploration is a good mechanic for a time-limited RTS game, but I am not convinced of its value in a persistent one.
Making it something that can be destroyed.... would be interesting. Imagine the shock of losing that amount of information. I could see players like STU putting a lot of importance on something like that. An interesting aside to this line of thinking would be a ship that gathers information within a 500 ly or something, you are allowed 5 per empire at any given time. They would report the news to your empire feed, messages such "Imerpium is now building Gorgos Starships", "Imerium fleet of 15 M is heading NW from Deusoldorf 6 to OO 3422".
Maybe then the Galactic News Feed would be a buildable structure one designated SC at Tech 10. This way it has the ability to be destroyed and is separate from the Home world defense build up we see normally. With the Galactic News structure, you would be able to build 15 mobile news units and also have reports on every single empire the way you described. Otherwise, news is restricted to what you gather from the 5 mobile units.
You have to be careful to not give players an incentive to run multiple accounts just to get better intelligence. Under the current system a player can get perfect intelligence about any location fairly easily, so there's no incentive to do this. Once you add something like "you are limited to 5 recon ships per empire" the temptation to double recon capacity by way of an alt account will be very high. Unlike resources or units, it's very easy for something abstract like knowing where a fleet is to pass from account to account. Most RTS games that include a fog of war mechanic deal with this by having the pace of the game be fast enough that it's not practical to run a second account in order to share recon - but Anacreon is decidedly not a fast-paced game. Players do share knowledge with one another organically and I think that's great, but somehow we need to avoid players "sharing knowledge with themselves".
Attrition:

I do wonder if there should be a limit to the number of ships someone can build. I enjoy the current attrition limits, it is altogether interesting and difficult to overcome. It brings a lot of challenges with it that I find peculiar, but having a nice dynamic. However, I wonder if we should suggest tampering with it. What if the small empire of Space faring tech level and below have no attrition limit; then a steady grade that increases attrition until reaching the Post-industrial, giving it an attrition rate of 50%? That would be a high penalty given the speed of starfleets. It would make things very interesting in terms of defense/attack. It would make the game incredibly unstable for empires to be as large as they are now, 1200+ in this era (how big will the get in era 4?). That is my real motive: Limiting the usability of giant fleets at a distance while increasing the ability to defend small areas of the map. Regional and local territory importance should be greater than the importance of a single massed fleet. If you are able to defend many small places well, then you will be able to defend your entire empire, not simply the sector capitals.
So essentially link attrition to empire size? That's an interesting idea. The secession mechanic is sort of supposed to do this, not by tampering with attrition directly but by periodically pulling sector capitals out of the empire above a certain size. What players have discovered though is that the L&O doctrine gives them a toolset to dodge secession entirely. I think the game would look very different if L&O were weakened or not a doctrinal option; however, it would be hard to retain player interest if there were a hard cap on imperial expansion since there is not a lot else to do besides expand. I also do not like unavoidable semi-random disasters like secession as a limiting mechanic - and players do not have a good mechanic for avoiding secession other than "switch to L&O and then freely ignore secession risk."

The intuitive fix is to replace the persistent universe model with a defined start and end state for games. This could be either a time limit or some metric of imperial domination. A hard cap would make mega-empires both less attainable and more threatening.

A harder approach that preserves a persistent universe would be to introduce oversize burdens on oversize empires, so that it is disproportionately challenging to keep expanding "wide" above certain levels. An example of one such mechanic: in Civilization 3, cities further from the capital generated less income for the player while still having the same operating costs, so that nonstop expansion into farflung areas became disproportionately burdensome (even Civ 3 had an endstate).

In general the game needs more effects that have a meaningful range beyond 250LY. When every 250LY circle around a sector capital is essentially the empire in miniature, there is not a ton of differentiation in the empire and expansion consists of basically adding clusters.

A good mechanic for Anacreon might be to implement the planetary combat mechanic and then have mechanics like insurgency length or strength and structure build time be partially a (nonlinear) function of distance to the imperial capital. So if you conquer an independent world 150 LY from your capital the insurgency ends in a couple hours, but if you take a planet on the other side of the galaxy the insurgency lasts a couple days and improvements take a long time to build. In PVP ground combat, your insurgents hold out longer (and maybe get periodic reinforcements) on planets near your capital, while in worlds on the other side of the galaxy they give up quickly. You would need to be able to move the imperial capital to a sector capital for players who start out in a corner or something; implement this by making the imperial capital a multi-day buildable structure that changes planetary designation on completion.

If the imperial center and imperial periphery were more strongly differentiated, effects of empire size would become much more noticeable.

Take my example of "pirate dens" from my proposed Mesophon revision (it's in the third post) down. A pirate den is a single-planet NPE that a T&E empire can send resources to with a trade route, similar to Mesophon, but the pirate does not provide AEs. Instead the pirate uses the resources to build ships and randomly raid other empires' nearby planets and generally cause trouble, deterring enemy expansion near your planets without directly going to war with them. A pirate den is an example of an effect that would be useful to have on your imperial periphery (if you are T&E), but not deep inside your empire (it's a resource sink, but would not do anything productive with no enemy planets near it).

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Finnian
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Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:38 am

let me know how the current war in the galaxy will evolve! :D
IN GEORGE WE TRUST

TheBugKing
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Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:11 am

Finnian wrote:
Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:38 am
let me know how the current war in the galaxy will evolve! :D
We are moving on to another phase... Grome Collective and myself do not have enough space forces to take the Hegemonic Capitals. So, we are going to rebuild our fleets and wait for attrition to exact its toll.


Meanwhile, the Galaxy will enter into .... Armageddon ....
Fire, Fire, Fire;
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TheBugKing
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Sat Jun 09, 2018 2:33 pm

I just... don't know where to post anymore...


My ideas for everyone else to do what they want with...

Technology levels should take weeks to gain.

There should be a world count range for each tech level: T1 - T5 1 world, T6 2 - 99 worlds, T7 100 - 249 worlds, T8 250 - 499 worlds, T9 500 - 1000 worlds, T10 1001 - 5000 worlds

Each tech level takes longer too build: T5 -> T6 3 days, T6 -> T7 1 week, T7 ->T8 3 weeks, T8 -> T9 6 weeks, T9 -> T10 9 weeks

Hubs are only available from T8 to T10

As your world count falls below the thresholds you lose those tech levels, but not the structure; you gain those tech levels when gaining the world count again.

I really hope this could be implemented simply...... it would solve so many problems right out of the gate.

The limits can be whatever we want them to be, but I say they must reflect the year long era's time line that we have right now.


After thought: I do not think that we should make each world take weeks to uplift to the next tech level, merely that great amount of time is the time it takes to build the technology. It would be useful to have a foundation to quickly uplift your lower worlds to biotech or fusion, but maybe we would see a shift to less foundation use until tech 8 where you must have a foundation to uplift the worlds.

In all honesty I do not see many flaws with this new system. I think that the time for each world to uplift shouldn't change though. If it did change along with the galaxy wide Tech Limits change, then there might be problems. But I am only envisioning these changes as part of the empire as a whole.
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Sat Jun 09, 2018 5:14 pm

TheBugKing, remember that most players cannot dedicate hours and hours to continuous expansion. Only a handful of empires have held 1000 worlds, ever, across all Anacreon games (you, Dorne, maybe Imperium & RoR). The game client certainly is not designed to make managing such a large empire convenient. The Fallen Worlds scenario supports 100 players; if you have beneficial mechanics that only trigger when somebody controls a fifth of the galaxy I think that sends a bad message. I worry that big empires would just "win more" under such a system. It would be basically impossible for late joiners to catch up to empires that started at game start.

I don't know whether years-long games are intended to be the norm. Neptune's Pride and Subterfuge are similar games and last a week or two.

A game mode with very slow empire-level tech growth does have merit as a scenario - perhaps there could be multiple games running, with a very slow one intended for players that want to commit to a yearlong experience and one with more conventional rules for new or less committed players.

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Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:43 am

I can feel it again. The galaxy is once again trembling. But is it trembling in fear or anticipation? I guess we will find out. :D

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Finnian
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Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:31 am

outside the galaxy is strong the need of an official bullettin
IN GEORGE WE TRUST

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