pfmosquito

Daisy-chained Front Line

11 posts in this topic

I've mentioned this several times over the years and have not seen a comment from CRS, whether positive or negative, but I STILL believe creating a real front line is imperative in helping this game go to the next level.    My most recent mention is this one from 2017.  Since I already discussed it there, I won't elaborate as much here.  Check it out yourself.  [this one is from 2014!  And this one from 2012!]

I wanted to bring it up again because after scanning through some more recent threads, it seems like a lot of main problems people have are resolved by implementing such a thing.  Here are the main problems:  game play is often slow [sporadic low numbers] with some activities being so tedious as to count as real work [guarding CPs].  New players get bored because there is no action, or can't find it; old players get bored because they know how to find action, and its not there to find.  Etc.

On the other hand, the game has some real strengths:  combined arms, massive scale, etc.  When there IS a battle, man there is nothing like it!

My contention is that all problems (eg, gamey and laggy infantry play, etc) are ultimately solved by more (paying) players.  A LOT more (paying) players = more money to solve the other problems.

So, what you NEED is a way for there to be action, real action, pretty much every minute of the day.  And the way you do that is to keep the two sides in close proximity CONSTANTLY. 

The basic concept of the 'daisy chain front line' is that the space between the towns would be punctuated at semi-regular intervals (200 to 500m apart) by capture and spawn points.  Preferably, these would be creative and diverse, and not just depot buildings, but I'd take depot buildings for now.  When you take the daisy chain spawn (DCS) closest to your town, you can now spawn from it.  That puts you closer to the next DCS, which, if you take, you can spawn from THAT.  IN THE MEANTIME, the enemy is doing the same thing, but from the other side.  Eventually and inevitably, enemies will meet at adjacent facilities, where the goal of each will be to push the enemy back the way they came.   At some point, your side will be close enough to the town that it decides an attack on the town itself is prudent.

Now, nothing about this idea means we get rid of anything else.  People can still run trucks to make FMSes and so on to try to flank or to escape getting camped.   People can still do the things that they want to do.  The big difference is that there will ALWAYS be people trying to push the line forward and that means that there will ALWAYS be people trying to stop them.  Which means there will ALWAYS be action.

I concede that I don't know what this would require from a technical point of view.  I believe I proposed in the past just trying it out between 6 cities in the heart of the map where at the beginning of a campaign 3 of them are Allied and 3 are Axis, and just TRY IT.  I assume (but it is an assumption) that we could do this while leaving the FB system intact.  I further assume that people could find the action because we would get notifications like we do when a CP is capped.

The thing is, there are always going to be 'twitch' players, but we don't have enough consistency of our big battles to scratch their 'twitch.'   This provides it.  And if someone ain't a 'twitch' player, they can still do all the other stuff.  But let's be honest:  all of us have a bit of the 'twitch' in us.

Here submitted again, in 2019.

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Killer actually posted on having something like this between towns for commentary, so it's certainly a long-standing known concept.  I think it got a sounds neat from the playerbase, no major negatives, but no major gotta haves either.

 

Along similar lines, the Gophur 'fallback FRU', where the latest FRU was destroyed and previously laid FRUs pop up in sequence, was another bid for continuous spawn action.  Current Rats' solution was the more permanent FMS, which is more of a all-or-nothing solution but likely required less coding, just damage state and art.

 

Many of the changes made over the years was about concentrating the action so there is excitement rather then a series of ships passing in the night as organized teams hit undefended towns.  It's a central question to answer especially as this arena is so large and very easy for new players to get lost in.

 

The problem with all guaranteed action mechanisms is that they ultimately curtail freedom of action and surprise and negates the huge world immersion.  Has to be a balance between the two, and a certain amount of theatrical trickery.

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1 hour ago, Kilemall said:

The problem with all guaranteed action mechanisms is that they ultimately curtail freedom of action and surprise and negates the huge world immersion.  Has to be a balance between the two, and a certain amount of theatrical trickery.

I don't see the huge world as being terribly immersive 99.999% of the time.

I like OP's idea. The buildings could be the farm houses (intact, or destroyed) that already exist, others could use FB objects, FMS objects, etc.

Dump EWS, or massively restrict the range of it. The players then see a map of the front, where the front is the field spawn points as suggested. The see EWS only when enemies are within 100m of a spawn, and the spawns could be set to be captured more like depots. If the density of them is high enough, the presence of the enemy might cut spawning. So you see EWS go off, then spawn at the facilities on either side and in front now, closer to whatever town you hold, and try to hold the attack there. Perhaps in such a world, the units could be assigned different defensive strategies? Ie: all spawns doesn't have the same spawn list. You could set them to divide the Brigade (or whatever size unit) so that they are evenly divided in 2 rows along the front (one at the front, one back from it), or they might have a small number of inf over a greater depth, etc. That's more of a strat layer thing for the HC people to mess with. So the Blitzekrieg folks might mass their units over a very narrow front to smash opposition over what they presume is a spread defense. Support brigades might then have to be bright up some distance in the rear (or at a town) to try and stop it. Starts looking more realistic, and certainly makes for novel play compared to now (which looks pretty similar to 10-20 years ago from someone like me gone for 10 years).

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My bottom line would be that after 10+ years of putting it out there--me, and perhaps others--it is worth trying.

"but no major gotta haves either."

I don't agree.  While I think all of us long timers have found enjoyment in smaller, more isolated 'special ops' missions, bomb runs, etc, if that was ALL the game was I highly doubt any of us would still be here.  It is the once every 3-5 hour major battle that all of the smaller things lead up to that makes this game as unique as any.  The small sphere action of CoD with 12 guys going 6 v 6 is nothing compared to the 50+ v 50+ we sometimes get, where some of that pop are fighters coming in from 10k, etc.  Maybe we can't get that more frequently than 3-5 hours, but my contention is that the missing link is the absence of intense action every 5 mins or so.  The Twitch gets his Itch scratched too infrequently.  I think bridging this gap IS a 'gotta have.'  Whether its my idea or some other which accomplishes the same thing, I think we're always going to have trouble retaining players, old and new, if they can't be sure they're more likely than not to get their adrenaline fix when they login.

"Many of the changes made over the years was about concentrating the action so there is excitement rather then a series of ships passing in the night as organized teams hit undefended towns."

True.  But part of that is because of the drop in population.  Back in 2001-2003, there were more players, and what you described was less likely.  Problems requiring changes like this are exactly the sort of thing I mean by 'all problems go away with more (paying) customers.'

"The problem with all guaranteed action mechanisms is that they ultimately curtail freedom of action and surprise and negates the huge world immersion."

I didn't understand this.  Is this directed at my OP or a general remark?  Because I don't see how my proposal curtails freedom of action.  I think it enhances it, and as far as surprise goes, I think it adds some back.  I think it enhances the asset that the huge world makes.

I will reiterate that I don't think we need to change anything else.  Keep the AOs, keep the FBs.   Pick 6 towns that would be most suitable, and use that as an experiment.  If the part of the campaign where those towns are in play is more enjoyable than the rest and players are sad when the fight moves away from them, then you have some good data to decide if its worth doing more.

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" where some of that pop are fighters coming in from 10k, etc.  "

What I meant by this was that our major battles have the benefit of spilling over into an entire region.  You've got fighters coming in from nearby airfields with other fighters interdicting, leading to fur balls breaking out randomly in the strangest of places.  Or trucks running FMS in from adjacent towns, with the enemy responding with interdicting tanks, etc, also from adjacent towns.   The actual town battle might be 30 v 30 but on the periphery, even more cool stuff is going on that you can jump into if you want.

All this takes time to develop.  After a town gets capped, its possible for there to be nothing to do except blow undefended FBs for 3 hours, until something else builds.  Its this period of time that we need to fill with action somehow.  If not for the old timers, for the new folk.

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The NAO I want to see done gets regional battle, and best part is we actually played in it in Doc's Bloody Battles version.

 

My commentary was what Killer had proposed and my impression of the playerbase reaction.  No guarantee you will get that now, just don't be surprised if people don't jump up and salute this en masse.

 

The following part was general pontificating on these kind of changes to concentrate action, most changes made to the game since the beginning have been towards that end.  The game gets more and more like an arena when you go that direction, what's the difference then between it and arena games?  There has to be a balance, and this proposal needs to be evaluated in light of a whole map that never gets played in or create big countryside battle.

 

Edited by Kilemall

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Ok, now I understand that you consider a change like this to be like those other changes designed to 'concentrate action.'  I expected criticism from the other direction, that it spreads us too thin; that's what I thought you were going for.

There is a big difference between what I am proposing and arbitrary schemes like AOs and their like.  I delve into those differences in some of my past threads on this, which I again refer interested parties to. 

Nonetheless, insofar as this would 'concentrate action' it doesn't do so any more than the FB system does and certainly not more than the AO system does. 

Perhaps you are thinking that on my proposal I meant that we could only capture the DCS's when we had an AO on the town.  I'm not.  On my view, all DCS's throughout the theater between adjacent hostile cities would be cappable in daisy-chained fashion.  On my view, areas of the map that don't get much play and countryside battles are finally a regular part of the game.   The region between Allied and Axis towns... ALL OF THEM...would now see combat.

But even if CRS were to limit capture of DCS's to the chains where there is an AO, this still does not 'concentrate action' beyond what the AO itself did. 

A good compromise would be to make all of the DCS's cappable at all times, but still not let the city itself be captured unless it had an AO on it, just like now.  HC would likely choose AOs where their side had advanced far along the chain, just like they now choose AOs based on whether or not they own the FBs.

I can see CRS wanting to do that early in the implementation.  My proposal is still the kind of thing that would work best with increased population, but I am arguing that if you want to increase the population, you have to meet the needs of the Twitch.   My proposal would do that.  If not my idea, somebody's.  It's gotta happen.

 

Edited by pfmosquito
to clarify

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I think it would certainly be worth looking at. There's a load of empty space between towns and FBs and capturing little areas, much like would have been done in the war, would certainly be a common sense way to move forward. I'll shoot this up to the dev gang and see what they think.

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Thanks, Westy!  I think you caught the spirit of it well.  In real wars, people got to slog it out from Point A to Point B.  They don't just spawn into the town.  :)  Its not practically possible to simulate all of that slogging but this is a case where we can simultaneously make the simulation a bit more realistic AND facilitate more continuous action.  I appreciate you taking note and kicking up the chain.

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I love this idea, it's a game I want to play (am I right in that you only cap facilities that neighbor ones you already control?).

I could see buildings (assuming a building is needed for capture) added to many crossroads, for example.

In the areas that currently have little terrain near the sea, there could be some coastal buildings (it's nice that there are areas without bush lines, but having some terrain/buildings here and there that actually matter would be a nice addition).

The extant ruins can be made such capture/spawn points.

Neat idea.

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