Author Topic: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power  (Read 3462 times)

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Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #60 on: July 08, 2020, 10:13:17 PM »
Quote
I never knew that!  Of course I've been attacked by wild ones plenty of times, but it's unusual to capture one, or have it live long enough to do much good.  By the time they become available in the game, particularly in my mod which puts them a bit later, lots of other things have typically already determined how the game is going to go.  "Coastal denuding" is not usually the thing to do.

Hehe I was surprised when i realized this first time ^^ Its quite fun and unique ability, was useful here as well. Missiles were fun as well for example, they were effective at killing units outside of bases. Inside bases there are def facilities so it was not as effective.


Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #61 on: July 08, 2020, 10:26:35 PM »
M.Y. 2402

War versus the Conqueror Marr in the north was becoming intensive in 25th century. Mid sized force of Sealurks and Locusts of Chiron surrounded alien base and easily conquered it. Conqueror Marr, unlike his rival Guardian H’minee, relied on brute force attacks and that approach was ineffective against native units. As with Caretakers, Usurpers had evacuation Colony pods prepared in case of losing the base, but survivors could not really get away to safety from mobile psi units.



Attacking force continue to advance and two years later foothold on the continent is secured with minimal losses. Terrain had been favorable foo native units. Apparently, due to ecological damage fungus spread through their terrain and could be now used by cultist's troops.



Planetmind

At the beginning of 2400s The Cultist learn new secrets about the Chiron native dominant life form – fungus. Knowledge extraction methods performed on Guardian H'minee and his followers revealed that aliens came to the planet shortly after the humans to follow the blooming process of the fungus. Every 100 million years or so, the fungus network becomes sentient, but as aliens describe it, for only very brief period, before it destroys itself and everything on the planet, effectively restarting the cycle. There were many cycles, but little is known how they change, and what would happen in the following one.



Hard questions were left for later times, meanwhile Invictus base invests a large amount of energy to complete last thirds of The Cloudbase Academy Project. It effectively serves as Aerospace Complex in each base giving the base full benefits of cultist satellite network. In 2400s The Cult had several Skyhidroponics Labs operational, each giving 1 nutrient to each cultist base at the time The Cult had more than 50 bases.



Chains broken

In M.Y. 2403 after years of bombardment, siege, countless casualties and finally isolation, when surrounded bases fell, Chainlink Break was conquered. Numerous Sealurks swarmed the base and with increasing support of Locusts of Chiron Drones had no more defense. Even southern Anvil of Man sea base fell before Chainlink break.



Attacking force was overwhelming and Foreman headquarter base, Free Drone Central, was in immediate danger. With the loss of Neural Amplifier and low morale in general Foreman could not defended efficiently anymore.  His forces were also drained far in the east, where Gaians and Cultist land troops were advancing as well.

Foreman's once reliable Probe team attack tactic was not nearly efficient anymore as Hunter-Seeker algorithm proved very efficient in stopping the threats in its tracks. Even super advanced Datatech probe teams were getting caught regularly.



Attack on Headquarters

By M.Y. 2405. Free Drone Central was already under heavy bombardment and surrounded by huge attacking force. Several years ago Drones upgraded most of their troops to SAM Antimatter armored troops making them effective versus air and missile attacks, but in turn they now did not have as many trance units to counter psi attacks.



That didn't fare well for Free Drone central as a dozen of Sealurks were in striking range.



It was the year Drones lost their capital and most of the rest of their secret projects. Foreman was not caught as he escaped deeper into his territory. Cha Dawn was not actually anymore interested in destroying The Drones, as he had larger picture in the mind, and tried to contact Foreman, but the latter was not ready to talk. Rare occasions of chances to try to broker the peace failed as Foreman wanted his large cities back. That was not going to happen.

The Manifold Nexus

Free Drone Central, now renamed to Fatima Garden in honor of one of heroic transcend commanders, was badly ruined after the invasion, but some if its infrastructure, and most importantly, its secret projects survived the attack.



Cha Dawn was personally interested in Manifold Harmonics for a long time and he was quick to get to the side even if it was in the danger zone. The project delved into secrets of alien Monoliths, fungus nexus points and their relation. Aliens, who had prior knowledge of fungus phenomena, apparently long time ago found out the way to tune to fungus neural network and probe it for their benefits. It is not known what exactly they knew or wanted, or was this some kind of bio-engineering project, but Cha Dawn was now aware that these nexus points were building block of sleeping planetary life form.
Drones were just the first to engineer forgotten alien knowledge and use it to extract material benefits. With high understanding of planet working, something Drones were not good in, fungus ecosystem could be manipulated to deliver ever more resources.



The Cult already had +5 or higher Planet rating and thus could easily reap the benefits. But even though Manifold Harmonics approach to dealing with fungus system was ingenious, such high extraction rates were still dangerous. Cha Dawn instructed governors to practice caution – but for the most part The Cult now relied on fungus for resources. Last mines, boreholes and other obsolete terraforming improvements were systematically removed from land and replaced with fungus strains.



Additionally, most bases were building Centauri facilities, like Temple of Planet, to adapt to Chiron ecosystem better.

Democracy

The war continued, but the threat was barely existent now. It was certain that The Drones will quickly lost most, if not all of their bases, in following decade unless they beg for peace. Cha Dawn decided to retreat from hands-on leadership approach as day-to-day tasks were wasting his attention. He could control key transcends from afar now, if needs be, and could let the people govern themselves more. Cultists transcends were now far more advanced compared to early humans, or even someone like modern Drones. The time would be used on trying to deal with Planetmind threat.



Data Angels

Other factions continued with its business as well. Data Angels were now friendly with The Cult, and were attacking The Drones. They also continued their technological advancement, building up in its strengths.



They were the second to orbital facilities as well, building up their first Sky Hydroponics Lab. At this point of time The Cult already had first outer space mining and energy stations and dozen of Hydroponics Labs.



Technology rate was so advanced that even the most wildest secrets were being broken for first time ever. Even the dream of locally manipulating the gravity has become reality. It was no wormholes or interstellar travel, yet, but Gravships were able to easily travel around the planet without the need for refuel or land, making the Needlejets obsolete. They would make pretty much most every other transport means obsolete, but its building costs were relatively high, so efficient cultists were still often using traditional rover and hovertank vehicles.


Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #62 on: July 16, 2020, 07:20:18 PM »
Conquering the mainland

War activities in the south continues as Foreman stubbornly denied his defeat. The Cult's troops were becoming ever more hardened, while the Drones in several cities had to resort to defending bases with non-combat units.



It was desperate and futile defense. Numerous Sealurks picked off coastline units, including many Supply Crawlers that powered Drone's industry. Conventional missiles were used to disintegrate astray units, usually outside of the bases. Usually, the bases had Aerospace Complexes and could defend well versus missile attacks, but every now and then missiles strikes were deadly.




The east was falling down now as well. Old Provost Zakharov bases were retrofitted to Drone's industrial standards. Nearby fungus terrain was used by mindworms to intercept reinforcements while incoming Locusts cleared the enemies.



As if that was not enough Drone's also struggled with native outbreaks. The Cultist wisely waited for native units to deal with Baikonour base defenders before attacking it. The city was in panic, lack of food and minerals led to starvation and desertion. Perfect timing for The Cult.



Research breakthrough

In M.Y. 2410. Immensely productive research labs get another breakthrough discovery.



Physics understanding was developed to incredible heights, partly thanks to access to alien research. Latest was build upon recent gravity secret discoveries on ways to bend space itself. Matter transmission, or once popular science fiction teleports, are looking actually possible now. In one way or another it seems its possible to transmit matter over distance. Its just a matter of time while one of advanced transcend teams engineer such device.



Another discovery was inspired by Data Angels who were happy to trade their knowledge for large amount of energy credits.



All the inventions led to remarkable nano probe technology merge with biological systems. Nanohospital were rapidly replacing conventional old medical facilities and human life-span was never longer. Cloning was understood well for over a century now and the science of consciousness was maturing. It was one of the missing link in understanding the Planetmind – but maybe even on engineering humans or transferring the person, to maybe another body. Cha Dawn was certainly interested in that. Cyborgs were another option, with implanted consciousness – something that was not yet successfully done, but humans were never really fond of it. There was something cold about machines, maybe Drones would choose that way if they would ever reach the level of The Cult.

Conquering spree


It was never to happen on Chiron as Foreman refused peace talks once more. His army lost Craftemans Keep and Hammer and Tongs bases by M.Y. 2410. Western sea bases also fell to Sealurk attacks.



In east Baikonour base was conquered after it had to deal with native outbreak. University Base fell soon after it. At this point Cha Dawn decided he would wipe the Drones completely from the continent and maybe even from Chiron if Foreman Domai refuses to talk. Drones had several more sea bases in far south, but at this advanced age, it sure would not take much to conquer every one of their bases wherever they are on the planet.

Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #63 on: July 29, 2020, 07:38:40 PM »
Waning resistance

Drones were very scattered and disorganized near the end of war. Their AAA Antimatter Garrison 3-<16>-1*4 were formidable defenders soundly beating Cult's Grav Singularity Squads 24-16-2*4, but there was not enough of them now, and with onslaught of native units from the east, the bases were falling quickly. Locusts also moved in quicky to exploit any weak spots in the defense, sometimes conquering badly defended backward bases.

On the sea side Sealurks cut quickly through the channel conquering several sea bases. Drones had more in the far south – it was thought Foreman was hiding there as intel could not spot him anymore on the mainland.



At the same time in the north The Usurpers lost their Headquarters, Tau Ceti Mantle. Bulk of their forces was annihilated in the hills above Fear Song, stuck in fungus fields, aliens were of little threat. Their planet ineptitude made them fight at -45% penalty - their forces were easy targets for native units. Even Chiron Locusts had good chances versus their counter AAA units.



Slightly to the south, last Free Drone bastion in the sea in northern hemisphere was conquered as well. Destroyer base was now used to stage further attacks on aliens.



To finish up war efforts one last military technology was discovered by transcend scientists.



String Resonance explains fundamental nature of space, matter and energy. It represents pinnacle of physics, explaining everything that Earth's humans tried to understand for centuries. Naturally, engineering side of the things led to terrible weapons that could disintegrate any matter on contact. Mounted, scaled version for field battlefield was known as String Disruptor.

M.Y. 2411.

Attacks continue on aliens: Fear Song and Evil Eye fell to Locusts Swarms. Satiation base was defended by Singularity Jets and non-combat units. Reinforcement were rare and The Cult actually lost sometimes more time on disintegrating numerous Supply Crawler than on base defenders.



Back in Free Drones territory Foreman loses Relativity School base, once one of Provost leading scientist bases. It was the hub of The Citizens Network Defense, giving important defense bonuses for every base. Another resource lost to Foreman, making his defense even harder.



Secrets of the Manifolds

In M.Y. 2413. The Cult finally learns the most dear secret of the aliens from Conqueror Marr. His minions fought as well as they could, but strong decisive attacks left little chance to hide and destroy everything they could as they used to do.



Conqueror Marr was in a hurry after the demise oh his rival, Guardian H'minee, to construct several Subspace Generators. Subspace physics had only recently become known to humans and aliens had difficulties understanding it as well, even with their prior knowledge. Apparently, as its now known, they were trying to contact their brethren on another planets, Manifold words, as they call it. Cha Dawn understood Chiron was one of their worlds, others were probably similar, maybe even with Planetmind experiment as well.



Guardian Marr had specific plan in mind, calling for reinforcement to wipe out everything on the planet, including humans, unless they, aliens, could control the incoming awakening of the Planetmind. Cha Dawn detested this thought, their understanding of Chiron and Planetmind was so pathetic and their only instinct to exploit and destroy. Barbaric aliens were like the worst of human kind. And for this they were going to be wiped from the face of the planet as they could only make the damage if they are left to themselves. Luckily, they were nowhere near the stage they could be dangerous as constructing Subspace Generators was quite the engineering task.

Guardian H'minee could actually be quite closer to the goal if she still had his bases. She and her followers were much more advanced and actually knew what they were doing. Cha Dawn was sure thanks to H'minee that there was another way to deal with Planetmind besides ultimate destruction. But will the Humans be able to to do the right steps when the moment comes?

The Telepathic Matrix

Secrets of Manifolds revealed yet another new possibilities that transcends could now grasp. With Cha Dawn they could collectively faintly feel those other distant Manifolds, they were there, almost in reach, but still strange, unknown and mysterious. If there was a way to communicate with other worlds, or somehow teleport there, physically, or only consciousness, it was yet unknown.



But there was maybe a way if human transcends could develop collective consciousness, through the project named The Telepathic Matrix. In theory human race could act as strong single mind, bust also with strength and innovativeness of its individual units. In sense human race could be planet mind of its own, maybe even capable of rivaling Chiron's prime inhabitant.

Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #64 on: August 25, 2020, 06:46:24 PM »
M.Y. 2414. The pirate king

The last significant resistance in centuries long war between The Cult and The Drones was broken in M.Y. 2414. when Drones last continental base got conquered. Old University bases already initiated rebuilding efforts and the southern part of continent saw its last fights. Odd Drone units on continent were being swept away and for the moment there was a feeling of finality in this part of the world. Plans were being made to transfer reconquered Gaian's bases back to their control and to terraform ruined improvements. 



Foreman Domai was last spotted in Great Lagoon hiding from advancing Sealurk forces. His bases to the west were quickly conquered and it was just a matter of time before he's done once and for all. He also lost all of his diplomatic power in last years of wars be stubborn peace refusals. Even Rose of the Data Angels has given up on him as they were at war due to several sea base disputes and illegal Probe Team actions. Foreman became mocked in diplomatic circles as mad pirate king – as that’s what the remnants of the Drones practically became. In this futuristic trascend age there was simply no place to hide for such people anymore, and for all the practical terms, this was the final nail to his meddling in Chiron's future.

Usurpers usurped

One final thing for Cha Dawn to solve has left. Alien threat on small continent, which was thoroughly invaded and ripped apart by Locusts. Conqueror Marr lost some backward weakly defended bases to unpredictable Locusts attacks and his front collapsed. Majority of alien forces died stopping the initial invasion of the continent and their industrial capacity was, best said, unimpressive.



Two Chiron years later it was all over for Conqueror. Unlike Foreman Domai he had not even escape route, or maybe he was after all too arrogant to escape. Cha Dawn knew everything he wanted from the aliens already, but capturing Conqueror Marr was still a sweet victory. This alien menace was removed from Chiron for time being. There are likely other of their races out there in the stars, but that would be the problem for another day.


 
Planetary Council  - M.Y. 2415.

Fall of the Usurpers marked a historic year on Chiron. Left between themselves, final three factions, had one more planetary threat to deal with. Enlightenment through transcendence in one way or the another, (there were some difference between factions here), was on horizon and there was no more time for petty squabbles between humans. Cha Dawn, Deirdre and Roze agreed to meet up and discuss the human future together one more time.



Deirdre and Cha Dawn were one vote, wanting to finalize Telepathic Matrix project and unite human kind into single PSI mind capable of rivaling fungus Planetmind. Roze was reserved, although not skeptical, as she saw what was coming. Still she would not want to get rid any part of its cyber freedom and individuality – so ideologically she had desired different kind of solutions. She was outvoted, and as usual, bargained for what she could. The deal was struck to have Angels help finish Telepathic Matrix project and in the aftermath every individual will have the choice (as it should) to join the Matrix or continue to live outside of it. This presented no weakness as Cha Dawn and Deirdre knew that 99% of the the The Cult and Gaians will join, as well as likely most of the Data Angels, making the Matrix the strongest force on the planet.

In final voting for Supreme Planetary leader, the one directing the future of human kind, Roze for the record voted against uniting. It was a way of keeping a semblence of autonomy for her faction, although in practical terms, most of humanity was now working on  single goal. Ageless leaders knew well enough that differences and variety were the strength of the human kind; maybe the strength of Data Angels cyborg and technological approach prove in the end needed, if telepathic matrix fail to deal with Planetmind. Transcends have become so powerful that deep inside Cha Dawn believed that was the future and that the humans will prevail in the end.

There were some ideas and calls for orbital settlements as satellites and planetary system mining were in full effort for some years now. But leaving the planet would be big blow for humans who were not ready yet. Then there was always the last option of nuking the fungus and Chiron to stone age if everything else fails. Singularity Planet Busters could certainly do that.



Elected as Supreme Leader, Cha Dawn, started coordinating plans with Deirdre and Roze for final confrontation with wakening Planetmind. Whatever the future holds he was sure now that human race will have all its resources and power available to face whatever was coming.









Offline Tayta Malikai

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #65 on: August 27, 2020, 02:00:29 PM »
Jeeeezus, 300+ turns and over 700 pop? That's a massive game, I commend your patience in slogging your way through it all.

Congratulations on killing everyone important in Will to Power, too. Certainly it's no piece of cake, albeit more tedious than it is difficult.

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #66 on: August 27, 2020, 02:58:14 PM »
There are still some more or less strong factions out there. Did you just let them live or they put up a fight to the level when it is economically ineffective to conquer them?

Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #67 on: August 27, 2020, 08:50:20 PM »
Thanks  :danc:

Quote
Jeeeezus, 300+ turns and over 700 pop? That's a massive game, I commend your patience in slogging your way through it all.

Congratulations on killing everyone important in Will to Power, too. Certainly it's no piece of cake, albeit more tedious than it is difficult.


Yeah its ton of turns : ) i turned on tech stagnation before in earlier games tech went too quickly, but maybe due to land configuration this one turned to quite a drag. I had ton of issues defeating Drones due to massive Probe team spam and Special project spam. Drones are like toughest faction outhere with their bonuses.

And then another was was a drag too - Caretaker aliens had both planet bonus and +25% defense ^^. Their economy was way weaker, but they ended up in Monsoon jungle. In later games I actually started to turn off Monsoon Jungle - someone like Lal is real monster if starts near one.

Another thing - its probably smarter to play on smaller than standard map for AARs. I actually finished the game like two months ago, but with vacation and some private work - had to finish important  project - AAR writing was slow.

Quote
There are still some more or less strong factions out there. Did you just let them live or they put up a fight to the level when it is economically ineffective to conquer them?

No really not anymore - I was lazy to do screenshots of everyone's land, but at this point i think I could overrun them in like 10 years its just tedious. From 1410-1415 i probably conquered 15+ bases or something like that - it really speeds up due to massive bonuses and movement - Locusts, grav units, drop pods, mag tubes and i had tons of bases (likely 50+) spamming these units in 2-3-4 turns. Gaians would be killed by Drones if i had not swooped them from north - through alien land. The last were Data Angels on their mid-sized continent - but they were not really strong - AI couldn't handle fungus mid to late game - their terrain improvements are awful. Then there's also that snowball of me having almost all secret projects at the end.

So i considered how to end the game - and this kind of ending seemed suiting. I didn't really want to kill everyone or to go transcendence - its kind of basic/standard Alpha Centauri story. In a way this story is unique a bit due to its different ending that could turn out somewhat different; depending on everyone's imaginations ^^.

I really had a blast playing this game - kudos for great mod  ;b;. This was version 43 i think - for anyone reading this later. I checked the  mod thread i see we have now version 100+ : ). I'd like to try it, so I'll see to start new AAR, smaller in size, simpler, likely faster game with normal tech and smaller map - and hopefully have a great game again. GG



Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #68 on: August 27, 2020, 10:34:03 PM »
Let me rephrase it then. At which point you achieved economical superiority big enough to conquer anyone you like not being afraid of consequences? I mean all possible consequences like delay in development, combined retaliation of other factions, etc. In other words, when the game was won for you and you just ran to finish line?

Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #69 on: August 28, 2020, 09:48:15 AM »
Hm let me think its actually tough question. Longer answer incoming..

- I expected that things will go easier when i get Air units.. i was totally wrong - Drones got them several years before and could spam them so it turned out to be worse for me. So I had around 30 cities on my continent, but they were not developed at the time and I could not develop terrain because they wrecked my Formers. I also could not move around unarmored units. So.. thats slow start - i may have gone too wide and AI got most important secret projects. They also started to invade with transports and probes - so i had to keep token defender forces. I was confused for a time - I thought +3 Probe was bugged (that AI can subvert bases even though tooltip says it can't because it happened to me on the year i switched to +3).. had i knew that from beginning the game would go smoother.

- For long time I did not have enough mineral/cash production to build needed infrastructure and both units to conquer bases and probe teams - because probe attacks were so annoying that anything i do AI could easily ruin by one of my mistakes or bad RNG. So i was quite stuck until my cities grew to 5-6-7 pop and I could actually amass many units in a place to crack their defenses. So I'd say things started moving faster a bit once in later midgame - once I had Energy banks, Hologram Theatres, Network Nodes  and bases grew so I had lots of cash to rush buy infrastructure everywhere. I could not get that project that turns NN into Hologram Theatres - that would speed up things significantly.

What matters here are also techs - since i relied a lot on fungus (and somewhat on boreholes) - those +energy techs were super important.

- Things really start rolling  smooth late midgame - once I picked up that +50% minerals everywhere project (by that time my bases were bigger and fungus gave some minerals) - it turned out most of my bases to 20-30+ mineral factories and with so many of them I started to overwhelm AIs. Drones had so many units that it was really tough to conquer some bases - there are screenshots where there's slider in bases because interface can't show all the defenders.

- Major turning point was once i got Brood Pits and Locusts - thats I think what you look for (so level 10 tech i think). After that i just steamrolled everyone because I could build worms/locusts in 3-4 turns from 30+ bases and I could afford to have +5 planet rating for huge attacking bonus. I overrun Drones continent so quickly that even I was surprised - this lategame everything snowball so I had like Demon Boils from get go. Also AI liked to picked Eudaimonia and ruin their morale, that helped a lot.
For example I  overrun whole Usurper AI continent with like 10-15% of my army I causally produced in short period of 5-10 years because they had negative planet rating and crap morale. In the end i even spammed conventional missiles for fun because I could - and it saves travel time - and I could just conquer some faraway sea bases with one attacker and few missiles. Quite cool ^^ - one can also this way just annihilate any AI units in open terrain which is super convenient.

What really speeds up things is mobility - Locusts are not such great attackers combat-wise, but they can travel quickly and attack backward bases - so if you spot bases with 2 defenders its gg for that base and it really ruins AI. Its almost comparable to mag tubes - which are obviously awesome as well. Earlier in the game its hard to get to places. Then it just takes time to amass enough units, critical quantity to keep rolling - sporadic attacks mostly fail - took me awhile to realize that. Another major factor is SE settings - once you grow enough you can pick SE you really want - for long time I could not pick Green for example because it had that -2 industry which was really killing my production.
Same would go for non-PSI faction - basically you would need to grow enough to be able to pick +high morale to cut your loses a lot. But in this version it was way easier to get +morale than +planet. Its also easier to build strong attacking units with low armor than worms - problem with worms is that they have fixed price.. which is not cheap.. and they can die to weak units. Brood Pits are really really nice here because they lower the cost by 25% so that helps a lot.

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #70 on: August 28, 2020, 02:52:27 PM »
Which version were you playing?

- I expected that things will go easier when i get Air units.. i was totally wrong - Drones got them several years before and could spam them so it turned out to be worse for me. So I had around 30 cities on my continent, but they were not developed at the time and I could not develop terrain because they wrecked my Formers. I also could not move around unarmored units.

Yep. They are not single best conquest units in WTP due to armor/weapon ratio equalized. They are still good for formers harassment. Which, apparently, what Drones did to you.

I thought +3 Probe was bugged (that AI can subvert bases even though tooltip says it can't because it happened to me on the year i switched to +3).. had i knew that from beginning the game would go smoother.

I'm sorry. Are you saying +3 PROBE is or is not bugged in this version? I thought somebody fixed this and WTP inherited this fix.

- Things really start rolling  smooth late midgame - once I picked up that +50% minerals everywhere project

Is it The Bulk Matter Transmitter? It comes with Matter Transmission which is kinda end game technology well past the mid game. It varies per version but, I believe, it usually somewhere at 80-90% of the tech tree. Do you have save game for this time?

(by that time my bases were bigger and fungus gave some minerals)

That is why I asked about version. In different versions it give 0,1,2 minerals. Tends to give less toward later version.

- Major turning point was once i got Brood Pits and Locusts - thats I think what you look for (so level 10 tech i think). After that i just steamrolled everyone because I could build worms/locusts in 3-4 turns from 30+ bases and I could afford to have +5 planet rating for huge attacking bonus. I overrun Drones continent so quickly that even I was surprised - this lategame everything snowball so I had like Demon Boils from get go. Also AI liked to picked Eudaimonia and ruin their morale, that helped a lot.
For example I  overrun whole Usurper AI continent with like 10-15% of my army I causally produced in short period of 5-10 years because they had negative planet rating and crap morale. In the end i even spammed conventional missiles for fun because I could - and it saves travel time - and I could just conquer some faraway sea bases with one attacker and few missiles. Quite cool ^^ - one can also this way just annihilate any AI units in open terrain which is super convenient.

Yep. That is exactly what I was asking for. Looks like the combination of above effects made your army unstoppable. However, at level 10 it is about time someone would win the game. So I don't consider this a major imbalance. However, it is still very useful info for further game tuning. Thank you for feedback.

What really speeds up things is mobility - Locusts are not such great attackers combat-wise, but they can travel quickly and attack backward bases - so if you spot bases with 2 defenders its gg for that base and it really ruins AI. Its almost comparable to mag tubes - which are obviously awesome as well. Earlier in the game its hard to get to places. Then it just takes time to amass enough units, critical quantity to keep rolling - sporadic attacks mostly fail - took me awhile to realize that. Another major factor is SE settings - once you grow enough you can pick SE you really want - for long time I could not pick Green for example because it had that -2 industry which was really killing my production.
Same would go for non-PSI faction - basically you would need to grow enough to be able to pick +high morale to cut your loses a lot. But in this version it was way easier to get +morale than +planet. Its also easier to build strong attacking units with low armor than worms - problem with worms is that they have fixed price.. which is not cheap.. and they can die to weak units. Brood Pits are really really nice here because they lower the cost by 25% so that helps a lot.

I guess Brood Pits are really nice regardless of initial native cost. They cut same percentage of whatever it was. Did you find BP expensive in cost or maintenance? I mean comparing to their effect?

Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #71 on: August 28, 2020, 06:08:59 PM »
It was v43 i think - i have quite a few saves i can maybe zip them if you want to take a look.

- Regarding airplanes - they are quite fine out in the field. AI loved to spam AAA and attacking cities even without AAA is really no go - i remember you changed something about that in some later version but i am not sure anymore. Anyway - airplanes could not attack city at all - AI also didn't even try maybe once or twice. So one thing maybe to improve there is to give some chance to airplanes to attack cities. They are way overpowered in vanilla game to the point one can only builds airplanes and its gg. So you could maybe try to improve their usage a bit.

- +3 Probe: It is NOT bugged. I had a question in your mod thread i think so we discussed that a bit - (most?) SE changes do NOT work on same turn. So if you turn on +3 Probe and click end turn AI will still subvert your bases. On following turn it can't. Its a small thing.. confused me so i avoided +3 Probe.. when it would be way easier for me to actually use immunity.

- The Singularity Inductor - that thing costed 2200 minerals and it gives  Quantum Converter (+50% min in each base).. but i finished it around M.Y. 2390 so quite late. By that point i broke most of the Drones sea resistance and aliens as well. Afterwards i overran their continent when all the bonuses kicked in. Picking up The Manifold harmonics was also huge but that was in 24xx - but then i finished the game in next 10-15 turns due to snowball. If I had Manifold earlier the game would be way easier - I know it because I got it earlier in another Gaians game.

- I found Worms too expensive for long time - i really struggled to get a decent number of them - and when i could they would be countered by worms or crawlers :)). It was also hard to build Sealurks which are cheaper (60 minerals i think) because sea/coastal bases are weaker in general - or get settled a bit later. Then when Brood Pits came and all the +cycle bonuses due to other fascilties and secret projects they were OP. So native units start too weak (compared to their cost) and end up too strong - thats a generalization. Very lategame my Singularity (24 attack) and string (30) units were way worse attackers than worms - because AI had Anitmatter (16) armor. Convetional units were great  to kill weakly armored units... its kind of logical and ok but its maybe a bit too much skewed in effectiveness over time

So anyway you changed a lot - so I can't  really tell now, lots of gameplay/mechanics here might not be relevant anymore to latest version.. so it might not be good base for changing balance.



Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #72 on: August 28, 2020, 08:00:42 PM »
It was v43 i think - i have quite a few saves i can maybe zip them if you want to take a look.

Quite an old one. So some of my comments may be incorrect about it. However, by all means, please share your saves. I always appreciate it.

- Regarding airplanes - they are quite fine out in the field. AI loved to spam AAA and attacking cities even without AAA is really no go - i remember you changed something about that in some later version but i am not sure anymore. Anyway - airplanes could not attack city at all - AI also didn't even try maybe once or twice. So one thing maybe to improve there is to give some chance to airplanes to attack cities. They are way overpowered in vanilla game to the point one can only builds airplanes and its gg. So you could maybe try to improve their usage a bit.

I am not sure what are you asking about here. They have all the same weapon installed on them as on other land and naval units. They were overpowered in vanilla not because they are airplanes (😂) but because overall vanilla weapon over armor superiority and lack of defensive bonuses to offset it. So airplanes were as overpowered as any other attacker they just could reach farther and, therefore, were more effective in speed conquest.

In fact infantry is even better equipped to storm bases with their +25% bonus. So it is completely natural that airplanes are worse in base attack. If we give them power to attack bases (or units in general) better than infantry then we fall back into "all airplanes" scenario that I tried to avoid. They are already quite useful as scout, harassing, and supporting units due to their far reach range and immunity to from the ground attack without air superiority. Due to that they should not be stronger in direct combat than infantry. The AAA ability helps to defend against them but it also cost. One can slap it on all combat units and even give armor + AAA to all formers but this would be economically stupid.

I'm not really sure what can be done there except maybe reduce AAA bonus to 50% or even less. Let me know if you think it would be helpful.

- +3 Probe: It is NOT bugged. I had a question in your mod thread i think so we discussed that a bit - (most?) SE changes do NOT work on same turn. So if you turn on +3 Probe and click end turn AI will still subvert your bases. On following turn it can't. Its a small thing.. confused me so i avoided +3 Probe.. when it would be way easier for me to actually use immunity.

Ah. Got it. Thank you for clarification. Yes SE changes kicks in before your next turn.

- The Singularity Inductor - that thing costed 2200 minerals and it gives  Quantum Converter (+50% min in each base).. but i finished it around M.Y. 2390 so quite late. By that point i broke most of the Drones sea resistance and aliens as well. Afterwards i overran their continent when all the bonuses kicked in. Picking up The Manifold harmonics was also huge but that was in 24xx - but then i finished the game in next 10-15 turns due to snowball. If I had Manifold earlier the game would be way easier - I know it because I got it earlier in another Gaians game.

The Singularity Inductor is enabled by Controlled Singularity which also happens somewhere after 80% of tech tree - pretty late in the game. It is completely fine to get such economical boost that late in the game. Someone should win it at this point. Thank you for clarifying this.

- I found Worms too expensive for long time - i really struggled to get a decent number of them - and when i could they would be countered by worms or crawlers :)). It was also hard to build Sealurks which are cheaper (60 minerals i think) because sea/coastal bases are weaker in general - or get settled a bit later. Then when Brood Pits came and all the +cycle bonuses due to other fascilties and secret projects they were OP. So native units start too weak (compared to their cost) and end up too strong - thats a generalization. Very lategame my Singularity (24 attack) and string (30) units were way worse attackers than worms - because AI had Anitmatter (16) armor. Convetional units were great  to kill weakly armored units... its kind of logical and ok but its maybe a bit too much skewed in effectiveness over time

Yep. This is common problem (feature?) of all natives with their fixed cost. They are perceived expensive early and cheap later. I don't think we can do anything about this on a large scale as this is set like that by designers on purpose: fixed cost and fixed combat odds for psi units. This has to be different as this is an alternative combat! I think this is good when you felt them expensive and then cheap as the game progressed. That means I set their cost about right. Otherwise, if their price would be affordable at the very beginning they would become insanely cheap at the end which would make end game psi even more snowballing than you have experienced.

I don't really know what can be done with them. This is like a SMACX foundation that is impossible to get rid of. I'd welcome any suggestions.

I also modified their cost to balance their combat effectiveness against anti-psi units (trance, empath) to be about the same as for same era conventional units. So that native would be as good/bad in base assault against prepared defense as conventional units. Of course, change in morale, planet and other factors tilt this balance and force player to change tactics from conventional units to psi and vice versa. That was whole idea to make strategy choice dependent on variable factors rather than make them a single ultimate choice regardless of anything else.

Offline lolada

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #73 on: August 28, 2020, 11:28:53 PM »
It may be interesting experimenting with maybe 50% AAA bonus because its really hard counter - it shuts down the play probably too much. I did actually use lots of infantry - that +25% bonus is really important. Infantry in WTP is way more important than in vanilla - Rovers just do not cut it for base attacks.

I don't know about worms now, they are mostly ok, so probably no need to touch that aspect atm. There's actually one problem - worm artillery is really useless as artillery. But they are excellent cheap defender, maybe way too good unless you have negative planet. Not sure what to do about that - it would be nice if they would be better in attack - and probably weaker in defense.

Saves are in attachment  ;)

Re: AAR: Cha Dawn and The Cult of Planet - Will to power
« Reply #74 on: August 29, 2020, 01:43:27 AM »
I agree that any bonus in WTP should not exceed 50%. Otherwise, it is just excessive. I was about to change it long time ago just didn't do it yet.

Good point about worm artillery being cheap defender. I didn't thing about it in this angle. However, I don't think it sucks in general. Due to 1:1 odds it is firepower comparable to any contemporary strongest weapon artillery. So the further game progress the relatively more cost effective it is. And on the top of that it is also not that bad in defense against rover counterattack comparing to these wimpy 30-1-1 conventional artillery. So, generally it is even better. Maybe I need to raise its cost too.
Again it can be countered by trance artillery later in the game when opponent can slap two abilities on the unit. Same exactly story as with other psi units.

 

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