Bay 12 Games Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 58

Author Topic: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game (Is this the endgame?)  (Read 75270 times)

Vanigo

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile

Well, my last thread seems to have petered out, but let's give this another go. I've built a PBEM/PBP empire-building game, and it's getting pretty close to complete, but I haven't fleshed out all the high-end stuff, and I'd be surprised if there weren't some serious balance problems. It is, however, quite playable, and I'm convinced that what it needs now is playing, to figure out where the bugs and issues are. I'm going to run a game, and I need players. I'll take up to eight. Any volunteers?

Previous thread
Admin interface
Player interface
« Last Edit: January 10, 2013, 05:27:36 pm by Vanigo »
Logged

Eagle_eye

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2012, 05:16:46 pm »

sounds interesting, and I might join, but your links just return "put game XML here" or something along those lines.
Logged

Doomblade187

  • Bay Watcher
  • Requires music to get through the working day.
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2012, 05:18:42 pm »

It does sound interesting, but I have no idea how to play. I looked at the links on the last thread a while back, and had no idea how it worked.
Logged
In any case it would be a battle of critical thinking and I refuse to fight an unarmed individual.

Vanigo

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2012, 06:05:51 pm »

sounds interesting, and I might join, but your links just return "put game XML here" or something along those lines.
Instead of saving and loading files (which you can't really do with Flash in a browser window), I designed the game to work by cutting and pasting XML. If you grab a game state from the last thread and paste it into that window, you can check out that game.

It does sound interesting, but I have no idea how to play. I looked at the links on the last thread a while back, and had no idea how it worked.
What's confusing you? If the interface isn't intuitive enough, it sounds like something I need to address. Or is it the mechanics that you're not grokking?
Logged

Eagle_eye

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2012, 06:20:41 pm »

alright, I'll play, if you could provide instructions :\
Logged

Doomblade187

  • Bay Watcher
  • Requires music to get through the working day.
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2012, 06:28:42 pm »

What's confusing you? If the interface isn't intuitive enough, it sounds like something I need to address. Or is it the mechanics that you're not grokking?

No, it was the XML thing- I had no idea how to do that. Give me a bit to figure out how to play, though.

EDIT: I don't know what the orders screen is for or how to give an order. Any ideas?
« Last Edit: May 06, 2012, 06:41:33 pm by Doomblade187 »
Logged
In any case it would be a battle of critical thinking and I refuse to fight an unarmed individual.

LordBucket

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2012, 06:40:23 pm »

...took a look...first impression is that it's not ready. The whole "paste XML" thing aside, just in my first 60 seconds of "play" :

Being asked which player I am seems like a bad arrangement. It appears that anyone can view/act as other players just by claiming to be them. Or at most, copy and pasting their XML from the thread.

There doesn't seem to be much of anything to do. I click around on the map, and there are no armies, no objects, no...nothing. I find a tile that has what is claimed to be "Toria Capital" belonging to "Nirur Toria" and I get a bunch of blank boxes with the options of "resources" "orders" and "close." Close just closes the window. Orders gives me a new window with some empty boxes and my only options are "cancel order" and "close." I can't actually issue orders and there doesn't seem to be anything to issue orders to. And finally, if I close on the "resources" button from before, it gives me a non-interactive window with a list of a bunch of resources per turn that I can't do anything with...and that window is positioned with the "close" button beneath the radar map in the lower right.

I have no armies, no way to build anything, the "move army" and "conquer" buttons don't do anything...there's just nothing to do. All I see as a map and some buttons that allow me to view resources. Nothing actually does anything. I don't see any game to play. From the description on the opening post and the fact that there's another thread, I assume there's more going on here than I'm seeing. But if you want people to find it, I think you need to make it easier to get to than asking us to dig through thread to copy and paste xml into boxes only to get non-interative menus that don't do anything.


 

Vanigo

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2012, 06:57:25 pm »

Being asked which player I am seems like a bad arrangement. It appears that anyone can view/act as other players just by claiming to be them. Or at most, copy and pasting their XML from the thread.
Yes, anyone can see everything on the map; there's no fog of war. This is more or less by design, actually. I could stick "explored by player X" tags on the tiles, but the problem with that is that the XML is very human-readable. You could still learn everything you want to know by reading the XML, and having a hoop to jump through would just give a huge advantage to those willing to jump through it. The alternative would be to produce different XML files for each player, but that would just be a huge hassle all around - for me, as the programmer, for the game administrator, who would have to PM a ton of files around, and for the spectators, who wouldn't get to spectate.

Quote
There doesn't seem to be much of anything to do...
Ah, yeah. It's a PBEM, so the player interface only produces orders. It then generates a "turn orders" XML file, which you give to the administrator. The admin loads the game file, loads in all the orders, and hits "run turn", which gives him an event log and a new game state for the next turn. The players take the new turn file, set up their next turn's orders, and the cycle repeats.
I'll see what I can do about a more comprehensive manual.
Logged

Doomblade187

  • Bay Watcher
  • Requires music to get through the working day.
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2012, 07:05:09 pm »

So how do we generate orders?
Logged
In any case it would be a battle of critical thinking and I refuse to fight an unarmed individual.

Vanigo

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2012, 07:09:25 pm »

Oh, uh, the big thing people are probably missing is that in the "selected tile info" pane on the right, you can click on a lot of those text boxes. Should have mentioned that sooner.
Logged

IronyOwl

  • Bay Watcher
  • Nope~
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2012, 07:11:14 pm »

I'm in.
Logged
"Next, you're gonna wanna fuse the soul of a god with the devourer of time and space and cook it into a nice curry, which you'll find the instructions to in our previous video."
2,500+ chapters about slapping faces

Vanigo

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2012, 08:07:02 pm »

When you start the player interface, you will see a text box asking you to paste in game XML. To go past this screen, you'll need a saved game, which the game administrator will provide. As the game progresses, the admin will produce a new save for each turn. These turns are stored in text-based XML. To load a game, copy and paste the contents of the turn file into the text box.
Once you've done this, you will be prompted to select which player you are. Once you've done so, you'll be ready to interact with the main screen:

The main screen is divided into several sections, as follows:
1: Main map. Click on tiles to select them for closer inspection. You can scroll this map by clicking on the brown frame.
2: Global buttons. The "Save Game" button produces an XML file containing your orders (more on this later). The "Players", "Resources", and "Orders" buttons brings up the player, resources and orders windows, respectively, which are described in greater detail below.
3: Basic tile information. This section of the screen shows the selected tile, its owner, and its base terrain type. To claim an unowned tile, click on the tile owner text box (which should read "Unclaimed").
4: Tile features. This section indicates the presence of rivers, roads, special resources, and tile improvements. To build a road or an improvement, click on the corresponding boxes.
5: Tile output. This box shows the expected resource output of the selected tile. This is non-interactive.
6: City information. This box shows the tile's population, and, if applicable, the name of any city present. If you want to build a city on a tile you control, click on this text box. Clicking on the box with a city already present brings up the city window (described below).
7: Army information. This box has information on any military units present in the tile, and two buttons to issue orders to your armies. Clicking on the text box brings up the armies window (described below). If you have armies present in the tile, you may order them to move around the map with the "move army" button (and then using the numpad or the on-screen arrow keys to move), and, if you have an army in an enemy's tile, you may use the "conquer" button to take it away.
8: Minimap. It's a minimap, which you are hopefully familiar with. You can click it to recenter the map.


There is little to remark on in the player window. Your total population and free population are important to keep track of, but straightforward. The lists of your cities, units, and armies are similarly self-explanatory.


This window shows your current resource stockpiles, the expected net change, and your expected stockpiles at the begining of next turn.
You can see in the lower right corner that the minimap is overlapping the resources window. This is a bug, and I'm going to fix it.


This window shows all the orders you have given for next turn. You may cancel most orders here, but army reorganization orders cannot be canceled. (This is because doing so is computationally much more difficult than you might expect.) Most reorganization orders can simply be performed in reverse, but if you order a unit or army disbanded and then change your mind, you will have to close the interface, and reload the game, so be careful with those orders.


This window is one of the most important. This is where you order units and buildings to be built. Taking things from the top, you can rename your cities by clicking on the name box, and order your cities to grow or shrink in population with the + and - buttons by the population box.
Next is the list of buildings. Every building in the game (except for a few hidden ones!) is shown here. Select them for more information on what they do and what they cost to build. Buildings in bold are currently present in the selected city, buildings in black can be built, and buildings in grey are currently unavailable because the city is too small or lacks one or more prerequisite buildings. If you want to build a building, select it from the list and click "build building".
Finally, the "raise unit" button brings up a list of units you can build at this city, and lets you select one to build.
Be aware, each city can only perform one action (raise population, lower population, build building, build unit) each turn. You can cancel the current order by clicking on it in the "current order" box.


This window is where you examine and reorganize your armies. Armies are the containers which hold your military units. You can create new empty armies with the "new army" button at any time, but they will automatically disband themselves unless you move at least one unit into them. You may have more than one army in a tile, in which case you can select one from the list of armies. You can also rename your armies by clicking on the army name box.
Armies often contain more than one unit, and the units in an army can be examined separately. After selecting a unit, you can disband it, or move it to another army in the same tile with the appropriate buttons.

After you have examined the game state, decided what you want to do, and issued the appropriate orders, click on the "save game" button on the main screen. This will bring up a text box with XML containing all the orders you have issued. Copy and paste the contents of this box into a post or PM sent to the game's administrator.
Logged

Doomblade187

  • Bay Watcher
  • Requires music to get through the working day.
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2012, 08:53:05 pm »

Ah, figured it out- I tried it with Quinland and it worked.
Logged
In any case it would be a battle of critical thinking and I refuse to fight an unarmed individual.

Kashyyk

  • Bay Watcher
  • One letter short of a wookie
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2012, 04:59:29 am »

I quite like this. I'll gladly volunteer.
Logged

Doomblade187

  • Bay Watcher
  • Requires music to get through the working day.
    • View Profile
Re: Let's try this again: Computerized empire-builder game
« Reply #14 on: May 07, 2012, 06:29:50 am »

I'm officially in.
Logged
In any case it would be a battle of critical thinking and I refuse to fight an unarmed individual.
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 58