Author Topic: Fusion Power Is NOW!  (Read 1788 times)

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Offline Mart

Fusion Power Is NOW!
« on: April 02, 2018, 01:47:02 PM »
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  • * * *
    Sinder Roze awoke to the beeping on her nightstand.  Sitting up in bed, saw it was 5:36a.m.

    Putting the headset on, she slapped the earpiece to activate.  "This better be good."

    "Pwned, Datajack." Katt's voice began, "You wanted to know immediately - Tinker Junction reports the radiometric telltales.  The Gaians have initiated the Ascent To Transcendence."

    God; this, finally.  "Where?"

    "Seems to triangulate on Gaia's Landing, Datajack.  Recon tried a few system probes already, but they'd sewed up the interlocks and the firewalls look tight.  They were ready for us."

    Roze pushed up her visor to rub her eyes, thinking.  "Have they tried the reactor control systems?  That's going to suck a lot of juice, to power the link with Planet, or at least at the last stage they --- crap; I can't think straight yet."

    "No vulnerabilities found yet.  -It's my regular duty shift tonight if you need to get back to sleep, ma'am, and our people are on the job probing.  Watching won't help.  I'll ping you again if anything happens."

    Roze considered, still groggy, "Yeah."  She'd only been offline two hours, and tomorrow would need her sharp, organizing the countermeasures and making arrangements with any allies she could get.  "Look in Contingencies folder of Protocols and open the Louis Armstrong file and review, okay?  Password forthelulz.

    "But first, Katt, screen Free Drone Central now, make sure Domai knows - and that I'll definitely be talking to him tomorrow.  Logout." Roze put the headset down and flopped back onto the bed.

    'The Group Mind,' she thought, looking up at nothing.  'All my life has been a war for freedom against groupthink and the human mob, dancing and scatting against something so vast and slow and oh, how it hates the independent mind, punishes style, and now that stupid, stupid Deirdre thinks she can suck us all into an alien plant making a Group Mind.  Over my dead body, she will.'

    Mobs were vicious and stupid, to even call it mob psychology gave it too much credit for any thinking going on.  The human herding instinct had been the bane of Roze's existence, social cues a self-contained girl hadn't caught, making it feel like everywhere she ever went there'd been a meeting held that she hadn't been invited to.  Social rules and holoshows and fashions and turns of phrase and customs that didn't make sense and no one ever explained.

    She'd never been interested in any of that; she had her machines and her jazzy, elegant code.  But an outsider noticed things insiders didn't - how on every systems analyst gig, every organization was full of people dressing alike, talking alike, telling her the same jokes, thinking alike, if you call that thought; how quickly and completely an outsider could become a pariah after a single quarrel with an incompetent IT worker or sysop.

    Mindless mobs and humans herding, everywhere.  No original thought, no diversity in groupthink; no rhythm nor style, no jazz to it, just an empty white-noise hum.  Group minds, bad enough how people graze together in a herd by instinct, not-thinking together in lockstep.  Bad enough the natural way people always form group minds.

    And the Gaians thought it was a good idea to drive the human race extinct making the biggest group mind of all.  A single life.  One mind; one thought, a dull carrier hum the soundtrack of Hell Forever trapped in the alien Group Mind.

    'No, just NO,' she closed her sleepy eyes to get some rest, 'Never.  Domai will accompany my trumpet playing, and Deirdre, have I ever got some free blowing that will blow your group mind...'


    * * *

    Game of the Month
    April 2018
    Fusion Power is NOW!
    [Requires Yitzi patch 3.5d]
    Bringing late game into spotlight. This time, we start two centuries after planetfall in Mission Year 2300.

    Installation

    - Unpack the zip file ("extract here" command or similar) to scenario folder, so that GOTM1804 folder is inside "Scenarios" folder.

    - Start SMAX patched with Yitzi 3.5d, use:
    Scenario > Play Scenario
    and navigate to GOTM1804 folder.

    - Choose the scenario, that you wish to play, there 2 difficulty settings:
    1) Easier on Librarian difficulty: gotm18aprLIBRAR_2300.Sc
    2) Harder on Transcend difficulty: gotm18aprTRANSC_2300.Sc

    - After you open in MY 2300, confirm that you are playing with game ruleset, that is designed for this scenario:
    Open F1 screen and make sure that the first Secret Project on the list, Ascent to Transcendence costs 3000.

    - Do not change folder name of GOTM1804 to any other, or change the structure of the folders/files inside after you start the scenario, and
    - Do not remove the folder GOTM1804 from scenarios after you started to play. That would screw up the game.


    = = =
    [Edit]
    Added version for unmodified alphax.txt, which should work with Firaxis patched exe files, and any version, that did not modify alphax.txt file
    patches by: scient, kyrub. Also official, like Planetary Pack, GoG, etc.
    GOTM1804[UA]


    UA stands for Unmodified Alphax.txt
    Installation and checking is the same.
    = = =

    Scenario Objectives

    Roze wants to prevent Transcendence. She can do it, among other means, by sabotaging the project of Ascending to Planetmind, but in order to do it, she has to gain knowledge on transcendence. Therefore, the objective of this scenario is:
    A) Research, probe or trade the Transcendent Thought 1 (the first generic technology after all tech tree is discovered) in smallest possible number of turns, and prevent any other faction from Transcendence (Completing Ascent to Transcendence Secret Project).
    B) Prevent any other faction from other three victory conditions, that are enabled too: Diplomatic, Conquest, Economic.
    Note:
    - You do not have to build Voice of Planet or Ascent to Transcendence, just prevent any other faction from this victory.
    - Blind research is ON.
    - Native Life is Abundant.
    - Data Angels just traded Fusion Power from Morganites.
    - Deirdre won Planetary Governorship in the first elections in 2181, against Santiago. In 2220 the second elections were held, also Deirdre and Santiago were nominated, but this time, Santiago received almost twice as many votes as Deirdre. Santiago is Planetary Governor still in 2300.
    - Deirdre and Santiago united their factions and are not friendly towards Roze.
    - Data Angels developed very well for the first several decades after arrival to Chiron, but then, till Mission Year 2300, Rose did not have very good advisers. Now it is your chance!

    Contest

    If you wish to enter contest, submit your save with turn, in which you posses Transcendent Thought 1, attach it here in the thread.
    [Edit - after discussion we ease the requirements for Contest]
    - It must be your first attempt in the game in order to be counted in standard competition.
    - Standings for Librarian and Transcendence difficulties will be held separately. You have to choose in which difficulty you want to participate for regular standings. If you play later the other difficulty, it can be only for Consolation Standings.
    - If you restart the scenario, because for example you lost the first attempt, even if changing difficulty, but still want to submit your game, you can enter consolation standings.
    - Achieved victory conditions are not objectives of this scenario. If you win by, for example Dimplomacy (get elected Supreme Leader) or conquer whole planet, then you need to play further until you obtain Transcendent Thought 1, and the turn you have it, would be your sav file submission.
    - Submissions after deadline are ranked in Consolation Standings.

    Submission Deadline:
    June 30, 2018.
    « Last Edit: May 02, 2018, 04:53:44 PM by Mart »

    Offline Mart

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #1 on: April 02, 2018, 01:53:49 PM »
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  • Reserved for Standings ...


    =====
    Submissions till 2018.06.12


    TRANSCEND
    - Kirov, MY 2393
    - Brecon, MY 2436

    -----------------------
    Other submissions:
    - Kirov, MY 2403

    -----------------------
    LIBRARIAN
    (none yet)
    « Last Edit: June 12, 2018, 06:22:39 PM by Mart »

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    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #2 on: April 02, 2018, 02:20:12 PM »
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  • Reserved for random we-might-need-later.

    PLAY!.  Mart's GOOD, and this will be GOOD.  -Note that there's ALSO an easy/librarian version for newbs, oldtimers who feel rusty, and anyone wanting a relaxing game.

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    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #3 on: April 02, 2018, 05:40:52 PM »
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  • I offer by-request computer art -especially badge, avatar or other forum-goody- as prize for winners in each category, BTW.

    Offline Vishniac

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #4 on: April 02, 2018, 09:17:57 PM »
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  • It must be your first attempt in the game in order to be counted in standard competition.
    That's not cool: we can't try different strategies!  :-\
    "Weapons of mass destruction are just that: weapons, tools to achieve a goal of dominance. And who’s going to call their use 'atrocity' when the school books will have been rewritten?”
    Spartan Major Julian Dorn

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    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #5 on: April 02, 2018, 09:20:29 PM »
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  • Bragging rights when you post improvements and alternate tries?

    Offline Mart

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #6 on: April 02, 2018, 09:39:32 PM »
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  • It must be your first attempt in the game in order to be counted in standard competition.
    That's not cool: we can't try different strategies!  :-\

    You can try different strategies. Just when playing for the first time, use the one you consider the best strategy. Your next tries will be for consolation standings.


    *Because subsequent tries are easier, AI most likely repeats its moves, you know what to expect when playing for the second time.

    Offline Vishniac

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #7 on: April 02, 2018, 10:43:14 PM »
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  • *Because subsequent tries are easier, AI most likely repeats its moves, you know what to expect when playing for the second time.
    Easier, easier...

    I still remember that GTOM, "A city called Armaggedon": was cool but any small mistake would thrash your game.
    And I remember of few others which were pretty difficult.
    We'll see here how high you set the bar.
    "Weapons of mass destruction are just that: weapons, tools to achieve a goal of dominance. And who’s going to call their use 'atrocity' when the school books will have been rewritten?”
    Spartan Major Julian Dorn

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    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #8 on: April 02, 2018, 11:05:44 PM »
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  • "A city called Armaggedon" was mid 2009 IIRC.  We've done a few hell-scenarios since; if you're looking for a challenge, Zookeepers ain't hard to find in the GotM Archives sub of Altera Centauri, and was alleged to give nightmares...

    Offline Kirov

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #9 on: April 03, 2018, 11:17:30 PM »
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  • You can try different strategies. Just when playing for the first time, use the one you consider the best strategy. Your next tries will be for consolation standings.


    *Because subsequent tries are easier, AI most likely repeats its moves, you know what to expect when playing for the second time.

    I wasn't happy to read this rule, either. I understand it's supposed to provide comparability, but in my opinion a single game doesn't say that much about a player's potential. Allowing them to try out various approaches (and to try to beat each other's score) would represent their overall SMAC skills much better, in my opinion. And will be more fun to everyone involved.

    And of course, you won't be able to make sure that the rule is indeed observed.

    I wanted to download the game and "take a look at it", but with this rule in place, I will have to find a free afternoon and focus on doing my best. Takes a bit of fun out of the entire experience, IMHO.

    Having said that, you're the CMN and if you don't want to budge, the first game it is.

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    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #10 on: April 04, 2018, 01:06:28 AM »
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  • Mart?  These two are our core audience.  If they want to play your work over and over after the first run, you've succeeded, and I see no reason to not just change the rule on the fly...

    Next time, at least?

    Offline Kirov

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #11 on: April 04, 2018, 03:41:38 AM »
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  • Mart?  These two are our core audience.  If they want to play your work over and over after the first run, you've succeeded, and I see no reason to not just change the rule on the fly...

    Next time, at least?

    Yep, I concur. Like I said, I think I understand Mart's intentions, but the dynamics of a GotM challenge may work better with replayability. Let the first contestant submit their result and watch the others try to beat it. Sure the AI will remain stupid and predictable, but the race will be against other people's time, inching inevitably towards the shortest possible one. After a few submissions, just 'knowing the scenario' will not suffice to win and out-of-the-box thinking will beat luck. I'll definitely welcome a few retries.

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    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #12 on: April 04, 2018, 03:57:13 AM »
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  • There's no reason to not do that on an informal basis, even if Mart feels like he can't change the rule after the start.  There's nothing at stake, after all, but bragging rights and a tiny badge, and the winner may not even be a member and get either.

    I declare, in fact, as AC2 owner, that posting replays and talking about is not only allowed in this thread, it's encouraged.

    Offline Mart

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #13 on: April 04, 2018, 07:33:41 AM »
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  • Ok, I see large support for the change, so let us change this rule. I will rework it.


    Just changed the rules. I left the old ones strikethrough'ed, so that for those who read them before, would notice the change. But I can remove them later. So consolation are for time after deadline.
    « Last Edit: April 04, 2018, 08:18:15 AM by Mart »

    Offline Kirov

    Re: Fusion Power Is NOW!
    « Reply #14 on: April 08, 2018, 03:32:52 PM »
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  • First file submitted, 103 turns. Easily could have shaved off a few turns with this strategy, and of course there are other strategies to try out. I just wanted to submit my attempt as a point of reference, to give other players something to work against. Please beat this result and please let me try and beat yours. If you submit a better game on 29 June, I'll humbly ask Mart to extend the deadline.

    This scenario quite literally starts when my usual games end, i.e. with Fusion Power, so I was out of my element here. I'm not especially good with the late game and I was surprised many times by all those neat techs. :D I didn't even manage to drive the tech rate down to 1 tech/turn (it happens only on the next turn, 2404, when I complete additional energy satellites).

    I will share more remarks elsewhere, all in all I just want to say that I greatly enjoyed this scenario!  ;b; Late-game builders will feel like fish in the water here, while competitive players will finally be able to do stuff which promptly gets you killed in the MP environment. ;) Many thanks to Mart for this effort. Guys, please join and pick up the gauntlet.

    I wanted to put some guidelines in the spoiler brackets, but I'll wait until somebody else shows up and wants to discuss the strategy. All I will say now is that the alphax.txt has been modified for this scenario so you want to pay close attention to any possible changes.


     

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