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Turtle Power
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Einhander
Cyborg Soldier


Joined: 17 Apr 2014

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 6:06 pm    Post subject:   Turtle Power
Subject description: Just fooling around in skirmish for ideas
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Hello everyone,
I'm sure I'm not the only one to do this, but sometimes I like to find myself a large map with a lot of enemies and just turtle as much as possible. Often in a situation where every AI is against me. Basically I create my own scenario within a skirmish map just to test things out.

In these scenarios I like to test out different styles of defense to figure out the most effective way to eliminate a threat in my territory with the least loses as possible to both my base and units. The reason for this is due to the limited amount of available resources that can be harvested at any given time with the space available.

In doing this I discover how to use my environment to my benefit defense; as well optimized set ups for the various defensive tactics at my disposal. Such as using bottle necks to funnel enemy forces into a manageable area, overwhelming force at just the right moments to hinder and advance, or even sacrificing territory to secure a more defensible position.

Granted against real players; strategies used against an AI rarely assist in a reasonable defense effort, but in doing so a build order can be established as well a general idea of the weaknesses of your own play style.

With players it is more common to encounter a overwhelming force than a well managed squad of units. However every so often a player will use a well managed squad of units like a scalpel to dish out some seriously critical damage in a short amount of time.

Now that we understand my basic motivation for such an endeavour;
what are some of your strategies or tactics that you have implemented?
How were your defenses defeated?
How did you sustain your territory?
What were your loses like?
What kind of maps would you play such a scenario on?

I ask these questions for a project I'm working on, and I wish to gauge the active player's capacity to handle such a scenario.
Would you find such a scenario enjoyable? If such a scenario is not appealing then what could change or be added to make it more enjoyable for the average DTA player?

Please feel free to give an honest opinion. I say that because to be honest I'm not a very good player, and in the case that someone else is not as proficient I would still very much like to understand their perspective on their play style as well.

Expect additional threads like this to populate the forums over time as my project progresses, I look forward to everyone's input.

Last edited by Einhander on Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:38 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Lin Kuei Ominae
Seth


Joined: 16 Aug 2006
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My only defense is a strong offense.

Static base defenses suck imo, as they can be easily outmaneuvered/avoided or destroyed with artillery from a safe distance.
Thus i build units only, which i use for defense and offense.

For offense a good mix of tank and artillery is the best.
Mobile forces also make it easier to expand your controlled area.


Only against the AI, which constantly sends waves of single units along the same path over and over i tend to build base defenses on choke points like bridges.
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TAK02
Cyborg Commando


Joined: 28 Jun 2015
Location: formerly Damascus, Syria

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Keep building as much as possible, units and buildings (tho don't deploy them unless necessary, and cancel them to avoid shortage), in quick succession.
Mainly, I focus on anti-tank and anti-infantry, and separate those depending on TechnoType.

Until I figure out a way to just "rush-'n-crush", I stay on the defensive, before steam-rolling onto the offensive.
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Einhander
Cyborg Soldier


Joined: 17 Apr 2014

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great input so far!

I have tried out the "tug o war" style of defense of simply overwhelming my enemy with an industrial powerhouse output of a wall units constantly attacking an enemy position. (Imagine a large snake of units crawling across a map to a location. Like 10 heavy tanks constantly pouring out of a base.)

How would you defend against such an action other than eliminating the production facilities?

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^Rampastein
Rampastring


Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Location: Finland

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These are quite broad questions, but I'll try to give some useful answers.

----

I almost always use some base defenses against the AI. Against human players I mostly use them as the Allies, although if I'm directly attacked I sometimes place down defenses as other sides as well (often when the battle is already going on). As the other sides I mostly stick to units for both offense and defense though, often with the principle that "offense is the best defense" as I happen to have a pretty aggressive play-style that relies on quickly and continously harassing the opponent and dealing damage to things like harvesters that eventually gives me an advantage.

A few times I've also covered each attack route with a dozen Obelisks under a stealth generator, but at that point you've already practically won the game considering you need to own most of a map's resources to do that, with each Obelisk and Stealth Generator also needing an advanced power plant to support them. The number of credits it needs is simply too massive for it to work in most games.

Anyway, focusing on PvP games:

Quote:
what are some of your strategies or tactics that you have implemented?

Mostly I've put a few defenses into an attack route (some kind of a bottleneck, like a bridge, fjord passage, or tight route surrounded by cliffs) so that the enemy would suffer too many casualties when trying to attack through it, and I could then finish off their force with my own units and proceed to destroying their base. Since you can't "win" a game by building defenses, the route usually needs to have some tactical importance; for example I might need to use defenses to protect a tiberium field that I'm harvesting, and that tiberium field then gives me an economical advantage that allows me to out-produce the opponent and eventually rush and kill them.

Some interesting cases have been where I've been at a disadvantage and I've been forced to build defenses on an usually not-that-importnat route just to keep myself alive in case the enemy (usually with an economical advantage) would attack me. In these cases I've often used the defenses to delay the enemy's attack (forcing them to produce more units) while I've figured out a way to reverse their advantage, often by teching up and using for example a Chrono tank or Tanya to take out the enemy's critical structures as they're preparing their push towards victory.

Quote:
How were your defenses defeated?

Usually they haven't been defeated. Sometimes like half a decade ago I built too many defenses and then the enemy just used another attack route to bypass the defenses and destroy my base, effectively simply ignoring the defenses.

Usually if you want to cover all attack routes on a map, you need to spend so much money on the defenses that are split up between the routes that the enemy can simply pick one route and rush through it with all their units (if they spent the same amount of cash on units as you spent on defenses). Because of this, it's usually best to only build a few defenses on the most important attack routes, and otherwise stick to units. For example, in case of blocking a basic tank rush, having just a couple of turrets on an attack route supported by a group of mobile rocket infantry usually gives "good enough" results where you lose less than the enemy.

Quote:
What kind of maps would you play such a scenario on?


Considering the scenarios I have discussed here, I have memories from the following maps:
[2] Tiberian Blitz (defending the fjord attack routes, sometimes I've had the disadvantage here when the enemy has controlled the blue tiberium field and I've then had to use unusual tactics to win)
[8] Tiberian Twilight (filling the cliff-restricted bottlenecks with obelisks and stealth generators when I've owned the whole western side of the map)
[4] The Sandbar (I expanded to the center and built turrets there, but because the center area is so big, the enemy could mostly just ignore my turrets and attack my critical buildings)
[4] Razor Blade (I took out the opponent's CYs in a 2v2 with a bike rush, afterwards they both rushed me from the southern route but I managed to hold them both off with turrets and flamethrower infantry)
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Einhander
Cyborg Soldier


Joined: 17 Apr 2014

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great input Ramp!
I'll be checking out those maps later on to get a better picture.

I also completely understand that most proficient players rarely use base defenses. Something I want players to seriously consider as a viable tactic for my project. However I need to be able to give them a viable motivator to do so, a reasonable scenario instead of "this is just an objective".

Would you say Base defenses become more of an option in maps where income is limited or slow to gain? Or is it more of a open terrain requirement?

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Lin Kuei Ominae
Seth


Joined: 16 Aug 2006
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 9:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Imo are base defenses more expensive in the long run than units, because
-repairing them costs credits and is pretty slow
-they can't get stronger
-lots of them can shut down when one powerplant too much was destroyed (easy to do with a superweapon or well placed air strike)

Units on the other hand
-can be repaired much cheaper and faster (in some cases for free via MRV)
-gain veterancy and this way selfhealing, better weapons, better armor
-can move towards the threat and defend the base on multiple points

On open maps, base defenses are extremely useless, since the enemy can simply move around them, outside their range and attack the base from another place. You will never have enough money and power that you can sufficiently defend your base from all sides.
Not to speak of the slow build time of buildings compared to tanks that you order in several dozens from multiple factories which give you a production speed bonus every 3 factories.
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Einhander
Cyborg Soldier


Joined: 17 Apr 2014

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A lot of very good points LKO, thank you for your input.

While I'm sure my motivation directed towards the topic of defending may seem enigmatic. I do greatly appreciate everyone pointing out the pro and cons of such a scenario.

However what I need to understand from a proficient player's prospective is when stationary base defenses are viable to them.

My intention is to allow as many options to players as possible, since in my point of view the more power (of choice) a player has the more they can get out of an experience.

But at the same time I need to be able to challenge players by generating new scenarios in which I can persuade them to think in a different way.

While I could easily write up a narrative and stick to that like glue, there needs to be avenues for creativity. Hence why I'm approaching such a odd subject to collect data.

Please feel free to add additional information  Smile

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^Rampastein
Rampastring


Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Location: Finland

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Base defenses are more cost effective than units when they actually get to fight with units, so base defenses become an option (if not a necessity) on maps that have only 1 or 2 bottleneck attack routes. A 700-credit Allied Gun Turret has no problem dealing with a 800-credit GDI Medium tank, for example.

However, as LKO stated, base defenses are almost useless on open maps (like [2] Savanna Ridge), aside from situations where the enemy is attacking your base and you can place the defense right in front of the enemy force. But you obviously can't quickly generate a big line of defenses there.

Because of their cost-efficiency, I think base defenses do also give more benefit on maps where income is limited (at least in cases where you only need to defend; if you need to attack yourself, base defenses obviously don't help as much, unless you base-crawl on the enemy's face).

Lin Kuei Ominae wrote:
-repairing them costs credits and is pretty slow

Repairing units also costs credits (doesn't it cost relatively just as much?), and while base defenses are repaired slower, they can be repaired on the spot while units need to fall back and get repaired on a repair bay (that also costs credits separately).

If you use mobile repair vehicles as Nod, they cost a lot, they repair slowly (possibly even more slowly than defenses), and they're quite fragile. I've found them impractical to the point that even as Nod I just prefer using repair bays over MRVs.

Lin Kuei Ominae wrote:
-they can't get stronger

Valid point. In most PvP games most units get killed though and elite units are fairly rare, particularly in 1v1 or 2v2 games. In 8-player FFAs or on big maps (some Dante's Desert FFA matches come to mind) they're somewhat more common, although still not as common as against the AI.

Lin Kuei Ominae wrote:
-lots of them can shut down when one powerplant too much was destroyed (easy to do with a superweapon or well placed air strike)

Also a valid point, unless you're Allies.

Lin Kuei Ominae wrote:
Not to speak of the slow build time of buildings compared to tanks that you order in several dozens from multiple factories which give you a production speed bonus every 3 factories.

You can always build multiple MCVs to speed up production of base defenses too. Sure, they're slightly more expensive (2500 for each MCV compared to 2000 for each WF), but still.
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UNSC THE CHILL OF WAR
Medic


Joined: 15 Nov 2017

PostPosted: Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like to build a lot of pretty much everything thing (tanks, static defenses, buildings), maybe expand my base to get more resources. I occasionally send out an air strike to destroy super weapons. Eventually I will feel i have enough units (or i get bored) then i send most of my units to attack. While they are getting to the enemy base, i will build reinforcements.
All the while, launching nukes.
I apply this to most RTS games

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