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Autor Thema: Wait a second: Catapults?  (Gelesen 552 mal)

Goodfella

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Wait a second: Catapults?
« am: 7. Aug 2018, 17:49 »
Hi,

I’d like to address a significant imbalance that may have been previously overlooked:

The Imbalance:

Mobile catapults are capable of shooting, then instantly moving, whereas wall-catapults are not.

The Problem:

In practice this means mobile catapults can shoot and 100% hit stationary wall-catapults AND can dodge any incoming retaliation shots.

The only way in which a wall catapult can hit a ‘well-microed’ mobile catapult is to turn off auto-fire, then predict where the catapult would be and then bombard that area. Clearly this is a difficult task, especially in the heat of battle with other areas to defend. Meanwhile, the attacking player need only right click on the wall catapult.

This huge imbalance in micro-difficulty inevitably results in the attacker winning the catapult battle. Especially when you consider the fact that the attacker will have more catapults: They have more money to afford more upgraded catapults – exacerbated by the hard-limit on wall-catapult build spots.

I believe this is one of the reasons why catapult battles were/are so prevalent in edain sieging. The attacker is highly rewarded! Destroy the enemy catapult – removing their only weak defence – then destroy the walls/ base buildings with your catapults.

A Solution?

I’d recommend that mobile catapults have a stance toggle (like mounted vs unmounted toggle for heroes) in which one stance allows them to move but not shoot and the other to shoot but not move. A transitionary time would have to be included between stances: a kind of ‘set-up time’ (again, like mounted vs unmounted toggle).

Mobile catapults would therefore retain an advantage but would not be near-invulnerable to their stationary counterpart.

Balance of power:

I’d also recommend that wall-catapults be significantly more powerful than mobile catapults, to address the outnumbering issue.

Of course, this would be a fine balance, as we wouldn’t want the balance of power to completely reverse, with wall catapults becoming invulnerable.

The Goal:

The ideal situation would be that mobile catapults alone would NOT be enough to win a siege (catapult-battling) but rather, they are one tool in the arsenal of other siege units used to defeat the enemy. So that the attacker wins the siege with multiple simultaneous threats that overwhelm the enemy – instead of winning by making 10 catas and gg.

I think the stance change would be the necessary first step (removing the micro-imbalance), followed by careful balancing (combating the outnumbering-issue).

Beyond gameplay:

If you think about it, it does make logical sense: a historical trebuchet would not be able to move 10 feet then instantly shoot a boulder then instantly mover again. Also, a more powerful wall catapult would make sense as these could be set up potentially years in advance on a real fort and huge powerful mobile trebuchets would take forever to move and set-up. Of course, historical (/ lore) accuracy is not the best route to good gameplay, but I feel like this is a nice case where logic and gameplay suggest the same solution.

Exceptions to this rule could include Ents, which I think should be able to move and shoot instantly (as it suits the unit) but should therefore be nerfed in some other way – which they kind of already are! they catch fire!

Thanks for reading let me know what you think!

P.S stronger wall-catapults could help in the ‘snowball-effect too!’
Euggghhh, I'm dead - Gildor 2017

NoldorSithLordsShipwright

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #1 am: 8. Aug 2018, 03:55 »
Hmm, a "deploy/undeploy" function for catapults would balance out their maneuverability quite considerably.

I like this!

Halbarad

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #2 am: 8. Aug 2018, 10:24 »
I like this!

Me too. It would also make catapults more vulnerable for flank attacks and counterattacks with troops.
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Julio229

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #3 am: 8. Aug 2018, 11:36 »
Yeah, I agree with this. I don't know if it would work with AI, for example, but it is a good solution to the problem. My only gripe with it would be if AI was unable to use Catapults.

But overall, good idea!


Captain Jin

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #4 am: 10. Aug 2018, 05:14 »
Making catapults toggle into stationary (and I assume have a cooldown on that change) might also require an accuracy reduction and range increase. Which honestly sounds like it would make fights more interesting and also fit what sieges should be looking like in the next update. I like this idea a lot!

Aranruth

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #5 am: 11. Aug 2018, 17:41 »
I also agree. If I recall correctly, Age of Empires trebuchets had a similar mechanic where they were unable to attack when moving and stationary while attacking. From a historical perspective though, I'm not sure ALL catapults would operate this way. Gondor's catapults would for sure, but if I recall, Rohan and Imladris have Onagar-style catapults, which were designed to be more mobile. In terms of real life catapult mechanics, I think Gondor's and maybe Angmar's might be the only ones to work this way.

NoldorSithLordsShipwright

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #6 am: 12. Aug 2018, 03:34 »
Age of Empires II did have that mechanic with trebuchets. Even the cannons in AoE3, while still able to move while deployed, were much, much slower. It gave siege engines a much needed vulnerability.

Tar-Palantir

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #7 am: 12. Aug 2018, 14:59 »
I like the idea too :)

Walküre

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #8 am: 12. Aug 2018, 15:29 »
I'm quite unsure about the whole concept, to be honest.
I do remember trebuchets from Age of Empires II and their own particular features; while they truly suffer a bit from their more static nature, we should also take into account that, once set up and assembled, trebuchets make for a formidable siege weapon, able to take down even the most well-defended castles with not so many hits (disposing of the longest and widest range in the entire game, if I'm not wrong).

Said that, I doubt such system could be fitting for the Mod. We're talking about a far more dynamic context and Age of Empires is unanimously acclaimed as the quintessence of sieges and mediaeval-style skirmishes. The next patch will have siege at its core, of course, although there are a myriad of other factors that come into play (like spells, heroes or magic). Not as siege-based as Age of Empires anyway, because things function differently in the BFME universe.
Making trebuchets more vulnerable would also have to be compensated by increasing their damage and widening the range, which kind of takes us again to the starting point: too powerful catapults.
On the other hand, however, I think it would be fine to differentiate among different siege weapons. As someone pointed out above, some factions utilise actual trebuchets, while others make use of catapults resembling more the versatile onagri. So, further differentiation and other unique improvements could be surely of benefit.

Nevertheless, I agree on wall catapults. Being fully stationary by default, they might be given more damage and range capacity without a doubt. They're after all fashioned on the exact trebuchets placed on the walls of Minas Tirith.

Goodfella

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #9 am: 23. Aug 2018, 20:31 »
I respectfully disagree with you Walkure. I would argue that with the BFME1-style fixed build system, we are more, not less focused on sieging than in aoe2. Simply put, sieging HAS to occur in this game, to get through a castle (granted, mordor and isen are the exception) whereas many games in aoe2 can end without a siege, without siege weapons because of its free build system.

Granted, BMFE2 maybe less 'siege-like' than aoe2, but again, that is because of their free build system, or more specifically - their lack of castles.

What's more, the new update seeks to make siegeing more prominent and fun and as such, this proposed change is a direct way to (hopefully) support those changes. We want sieging to be more than just catapults steamrolling the enemy fort, therefore this micro imbalance needs to be addressed.

I like the idea of differentiation of siege weapons: ents would be differentiated in instant movement and fire (i guess). Perhaps the onagar-style siege weapons could also be in a similar way, although i predict you'd have to give them a pretty heavy dmg nerf to make them not OP vs immobile wall catapults.

I personally don't think mobile catapults would have to have a damage or range buff, they are powerful enough as they are imo - just exponentially more so vs stationery catapults because they can move. I do however think wall catapults should receive a buff because they will inevitably be outnumbered.
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Smeargollum

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #10 am: 24. Aug 2018, 17:14 »
Hi guys,
just one little question whitch came into my mind while reading this text.                       
Shall it be that a unmicroed wallcatapult can defeat a "well-microed" atacking catapult? Because wallcatapults are not the only thing that you have to distroy atacking catapult: You have also you powerful cav.
So what do you think about it?


P.S. sorry for my bad English.
« Letzte Änderung: 24. Aug 2018, 17:30 von Smeargollum »

Goodfella

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #11 am: 24. Aug 2018, 18:01 »
I would say:

1. The 'well-microed' mobile catapult will not have as much 'micro-potential' anymore. Because it will be forced to be stationary, making the 'micro-balance' between the two more equal.

2. An 'unmicroed' wall catapult will lose to a 'well-microed' non-wall catapult. Unless, by luck, the unmicroed wall catapult hits the mobile one. Imagine, the un-microed wall catapult will be auto-shooting all over the place and therefore will very likely not be hitting the enemy catapults. Whereas the 'well-microed' non-wall catapult will be directly targeting the wall catapult and therefore will win.

3. In a 1v1, assuming perfect micro from both sides (which will be easy, literally just set up and right click for both) the wall catapult should win. In a 1v1. Beacuse in a real game it will not be a 1v1. There's potential for the enemy to get multiple catapults to fire at the 1 wall catapult simultaneously.

Not quite sure what you mean about the cav. If you mean cavalry attacks on the mobile catapults, this can be solved through pikes defending against cav flanks.

Hope that answered your question  xD
« Letzte Änderung: 24. Aug 2018, 18:09 von Goodfella »
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Walküre

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #12 am: 24. Aug 2018, 18:44 »
I respectfully disagree with you Walkure. I would argue that with the BFME1-style fixed build system, we are more, not less focused on sieging than in aoe2. Simply put, sieging HAS to occur in this game, to get through a castle (granted, mordor and isen are the exception) whereas many games in aoe2 can end without a siege, without siege weapons because of its free build system.

It's not that BFME1 is more or less focused on siege than Age of Empires; my point is actually that Age of Empires is on a totally different league than the BFME universe, whether it be the first or second chapter.

As you've fairly pointed out, the next patch will bring a new breath of fresh air in its attempt to revolutionise siege and spells altogether, thus avoiding more and more the risk of the famous/infamous pre-determined games. Notwithstanding that this shall happen and be a remarkable feat for the Mod, I still believe that this founding premise does not really detract from the fact that Age of Empires is governed by different laws and another general logic.
In previous words of mine, this iconic RTS series is the quintessential epitome of skirmishes, embodied by a basically endless succession of advance/retreat clashes, which is what mediaeval and modern tactics exactly consisted of (aiming to conquer specific objectives to use later as a persuading lever against the enemy), made even more fluid by the canonical free-building system; nevertheless, while we don't have a real central and vital point to defend here (like fixed fortresses or camps), lest we be destined to perish, the game itself offers a vast variety of siege weapons and options which goes simply beyond imagination, ranging from ballistae or trebuchets to mobile cannons or cannon-armed vessels. Tonnes of siege possibilities, as many as what you dispose of in terms of traditional troops.

Therefore, in such aforementioned context, it's not that siege occupies a more or less relevant spot in every possible strategic plan; it's rather that siege itself runs in the game's veins as one of its integral and pervasive souls, whether games end with siege or not (with the latter eventuality being quite rare, by the way). To put it in a briefer manner: think about siege weapons as you would think about standard infantry, cavalry or archery. This is what I'm trying to say.

Said that, I would then argue that BFME's specific case presents a stark difference, in that siege weapons are rightly confined in a more contained dimension, where the entire concept of siege is structured to serve more defined purposes; and, without a doubt, if it's true that siege weapons don't fulfil a mere supportive function, they're not granted the same level of prominence as normal units nonetheless. And it's a good thing that the logic behind differs, because BFME favours major decisive battles instead (following, now, in the footsteps of ancient warfare).
So, I do believe that stationary trebuchets would not suit the Edain Mod, since they fare well in Age of Empires, but wouldn't likewise in BFME: major battles would not allow their full potential to be used effectively, the whole battle scenario is not enough spread throughout the map to give them a proper margin of action, the very weapons would be left at the mercy of cavalry (far more versatile and faster than that of Age of Empires) and so rendered useless. Not to mention, as I've written in my previous reply, that, in order to give such kind of static (when assembled) trebuchets a fair advantage and differentiation, range and damage would necessarily have to be increased (with the risk of frustrating any wish to counter overpowered catapults).

My overall thoughts and personal impressions, of course.
« Letzte Änderung: 25. Aug 2018, 00:43 von Walküre »

Goodfella

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #13 am: 24. Aug 2018, 19:28 »

So, I do believe that stationary trebuchets would not suit the Edain Mod, since they fare well in Age of Empires, but wouldn't likewise in BFME: major battles would not allow their full potential to be used effectively, the whole battle scenario is not enough spread throughout the map to give them a proper margin of action,


Yes I agree that the two are very different games. Also, that siege functions differently in the two and that siege in edain serves are more specific function: solely to destroy buildings. As you rightly said their are multiple siege units in AoE2, including those that have anti-infantry roles (e.g. scorpions, organ guns).

So yeah you can make siege that functions quite similar to any other unit, in that it is anti-infantry. Which is not really the case in edain. Siege is designed to be anti building (as it should be imo).

However, my point was never that catapults (or just trebuchets) should have an immobile & firing stance because that feature is in AoE2. Whether that feature was in AoE2 or not, i would still argue for it. TBH i hadn't even realised trebuchets did this in AoE2, i never played it that regularly (i used to play the 1st when i was a kid XD )

The reason I suggested it being that there is a huge micro imbalance between mobile catapults and immobile catapults. This change would fix that micro imbalance.

Just because AoE is a different game with different mechanics to BMFE and has imobbile catapults, does not automatically mean that immobile catapults will be ill-suited to edain imo.


the very weapons would be left at the mercy of cavalry (far more versatile and faster than that of Age of Empires) and so rendered useless.


It's true that immobile catapults will be vulnerable to cavalry, but so are mobile ones, the cavalry is always faster than catapults. So you would have to protect your catapults with pikes, whether they are immobile when shooting or not. In fact, infantry in general is faster than siege, so you always have to protect your siege, again immobile shooting or not.

Not to mention, as I've written in my previous reply, that, in order to give such kind of static (when assembled) trebuchets a fair advantage and differentiation, range and damage would necessarily have to be increased (with the risk frustrating any wish to counter overpowered catapults).

My overall thoughts and personal impressions, of course.

I don't think mobile catapults would require a damage and range buff because of their lack of mobility. I think they are strong enough as it is and, as previously mentioned I think they should be weaker than wall catapults because of the outnumbering issue. You could however argue they could use a health buff vs infantry and cav, i'm not sure if it's necessary but you could debate it.

Thanks for your reply (as ever :) )
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Smeargollum

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Re: Wait a second: Catapults?
« Antwort #14 am: 24. Aug 2018, 21:09 »
Thanks for the answer Goodfella!
First: I meant that we could discuess about the question, "Why should it not be that someone as attacker with good micro can destroy the defender's wall-catapult? So that the defender needs only tell his wall-catapults to attack the attacking catapults and destroy them on that way."
And my questinon (or at least what I wanted to ask) was: shold that be so?
Personally, I would say: No! Because the defender does not have to do more than a click on the enymys catapult while the attacker microed his catapult carefully.
And at this point, I thought it would be nice if the defender needed a second element to destroy the attacking catapults. And at first I thought that this could be cav. But... 
Zitat
this can be solved through pikes defending against cav flanks.
that is correct. And so the defender, who makes a failure, would need some archers to kill the pikes and then destroy the catapults with the cav, which would be much more interesting than just catapult battles.
Zitat
3. In a 1v1, assuming perfect micro from both sides (which will be easy, literally just set up and right click for both) the wall catapult should win. In a 1v1. Beacuse in a real game it will not be a 1v1. There's potential for the enemy to get multiple catapults to fire at the 1 wall catapult simultaneously.
On that point I do agree with you.

So I hope that the google translater helpt me enought so that you was able to understand me^^