Hero Mod (Development)

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Myk
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 12:56 pm

Postby Myk » Wed Jan 11, 2012 12:21 am

Monthly progress...

Oh man. How to scare yourself: Accidentally set one of the upgrades to 0 and then ask the computer to do it. The AI will just freeze.
I had started getting the idea that I had somehow corrupted the mod, and was going to have to rebuild the whole thing. It wouldn't have been overwhelmingly hard, but it would have been a lot of work.
Everything turned out fine after I fixed that.

Oh, and a weird bug: If you set units to spawn 2 in 1 egg in units.dat, weird things happen with the supply if you then morph one of those units. My friend was playing Zerg and whenever he wanted more supply, he just morphed a devourer for -40 supply count!

A weird unit: If you fix the Floor Gun Trap so Terran can build it, then set the unit dimensions to 0,0, you may then stack them. Not the most balanced thing around, but it's neat being able to stack stuff in SC.

Overpowered effects: Giving the Dark Archon Maelstrom as a weapon and/or the Arbiter Stasis Field is downright broken. Entire screens just kind of freeze and you can pick them off. I need to move those to new weapons slots so I can give them a bigger delay or just remove them. Sad.
Not so bad: Lockdown missile ghosts. The ultimate in bunker support!


Wrote a new Terran AI (complete with old ZBathT parts) and it's really good. Really, really good. Probably the most fun I've had beating down insane AI yet.
As soon as I make some design decisions about Zerg and Protoss, I'll have those written as well.

Onwards...
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Myk
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 12:56 pm

Postby Myk » Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:32 am

Nice signature. ;)

I hope to see you around. I'd like to play some PEAI against you sometime.


******************************
Mod progress:

I made the AI so insane that basic player units can't really fight back. It was also fun to fight such big masses of units. So I've been playing with more iscripting and other wizardry to get what I want to happen.

I've also got an idea to replace to SC income system to use something using triggers, much influenced by STF and PEAI, but also different than both in subtle ways.

Biggest worries are avoiding the sprite limit and running out of iscript entries so far. :D


Unrelated: I've figured out how to import graphics into Starcraft. Might make a tutorial or something, because most of them are outdated or really outdated.
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Myk
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 12:56 pm

Postby Myk » Sat Oct 13, 2012 4:55 am

This thing is dead at this point, and I'm really sorry about that. I've been thinking about it again, nevertheless...

What I ended up with was a computer opponent of each race (Terran, Zerg, Protoss) each with their own special building (comsat, cerebrat, warpgate) that could build units instantly at no cost whatsoever. The tech tree was gone, so the AI script itself was incredibly powerful. The Terran AI was awesome since it basically ghost/nuke rushed you as soon as you built your first few units.

The human playable units were souped up versions, borrowing a lot of the hero default stats, but I changed those up a lot. It's interesting to balance HP vs armor. Armor is great against small attacks, but then things like Siege Tank blasts are just murder. So I went with about 10x base health and default armor (and up to +5 in upgrades). I couldn't ever settle on the supply count, but it always felt too high or too late if I just multiplied each number.

I also made a few cool buildings. An Overmind building with fat health and a lurker attack that would do this weird boomerage effect (ripped off from Ultimate Doom), a Missile Turret that was ground to ground firing, a Nexus with recall (super handy in multiplayer), and the installation floor gun (if you play with these, you can get them to build stacked, which is totally broken and fun!). Oh yeah, and just using a single building to make units rocks, go go stf influence!

The 'big problem' is that just turning up the basic units isn't enough when you make the AI so crazy. If you keep the default attacks, you end up with stonewall unit types (really defensive, but not really damaging). And so I started to play with the iscripts, giving a lot of units attacks kind of similar to those in Ultimate Doom, but I did my own work in recreating them. It was just exhausting and I didn't even finish off the Protoss units. What I need is Diablo AOE spells in the form of SC guns: more piercing attacks, firewall, nukes, and stuff like that to crash through the unit waves.

Cool units: Carrier with way more interceptors and each of those fired in that 3x3 area type, Dragoons that fired a bouncing Archon sized projectile, Zealot with shockwave nova, Dark Archon with Maelstrom attack (super imba, but toned it down to only fire as fast as the effect wears off), Battlecruiser that fired some tiny rockets with huge AOE (wtf?), Ghost with lockdown weapon (fun/imbalanced/love it).

Random ranting:
I don't think I have enough unique attack ideas or graphic slots to even finish if I rebooted the whole thing. It seems daunting, even to just think about it right now, maybe because I'm just an iscript idiot. Even if I ripped off Ultimate Doom to the max, are there even enough slots for all of my hero units to have their own guns? I need to plop open datedit and make some notes to see where this lands. And each unit is kind of special, so just leaving it out really sucks.

Mining was dumb. A kills to minerals scheme might be better, or some kind of terrain based income like STF. Anything that reduces that slow buildup phase in early game is good stuff.

Each time I played the game turned into using super-defenso-flying units to cruise past the AI units and shoot their gateways. It's like playing against AO except a zillion things pop out instead of one insane dude that cooks your army in one swipe. Ideally, I want to use a mix of units that can overcome the AI units, either cleverly or just overpowering through them.


Things learned:
Thinking about asymmetrical games is a lot of fun. They're imbalanced at the core, but that's okay - One thing is a giant plus: you don't have to worry how dumb/smart the AI is when you're knowingly tilting it farther away from offering a symmetrical game. It's easing to the mind when you don't have to worry how badly the computer is going to micro mutalisks, because it's now got 40 of them and doesn't need to!
pastelmind
Posts: 57
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2010 7:50 am

Postby pastelmind » Sun Oct 14, 2012 4:15 am

How about setting the harvesting time to zero w/ FireGraft? It makes FastestPossibleMap games possible on ANY map, and existing FPMs will give ridiculous resource income.

Also you could do awesome things with plugins.
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Myk
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 12:56 pm

Postby Myk » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:11 pm

How about dropping all of the non-spellcaster air units?
Some interesting gains are:
Terran: An extra cloaking unit, yamato gun needs a new home.
Protoss: D.Web needs a new home, a defensive building that uses interceptors?
Zerg: Nothing? No more weird tricks with the Devourer's hardcoded attack.

And then there's some stuff that isn't immediately apparent, like giving the high templar the corsair's gun. Or giving Infested Duran the mutalisk attack. Interesting possibilities.

[quote name='pastelmind' date='13 October 2012 - 09:15 PM' timestamp='1350188117' post='11203']
How about setting the harvesting time to zero w/ FireGraft? It makes FastestPossibleMap games possible on ANY map, and existing FPMs will give ridiculous resource income.

Also you could do awesome things with plugins.
[/quote]
The problem is that the resource system in SC doesn't work too well when you want fewer, more powerful units. I've messed around with it enough to realize that it's not so awesome for what I'm trying to do. I'd like the mod to work across a lot of maps, not just on FPM. There's no real balancing the default system between those.

What I've been sketching up is something like:
Each Supply Depot adds 200 minerals per round
Each Command Center adds 200 minerals per round
Units cost something like 1200-1500 + more for the upper tier stuff.
Each non-worker unit & defense building has an upkeep of 100 per round.
All of the buildings except for a generic 'barricade' building take up a lot of space so you always need more room.
I know this is easy to implement in either triggers or a plugin. The plugin might win just because you can print to the screen without being too overbearing?

Edit #1: That's the whole problem with doing anything different with the economy in SC: the bolts show like no tomorrow, and it's never as intuitive as 'mine more minerals!' So, I may scrap the alternate economy plan and adjust the AI according to map type (FPM vs regular) as I know how to do that. I can even adjust the starting bonus accordingly too. That, and it requires a trivial amount of work to implement.

Edit #2: How hard would it be to dynamically adjust the return value of minerals/gas based on how many military units each player controls? Or, alternatively, adjust the cost of each military unit depending on the same information.
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Taranok
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Joined: Tue Sep 07, 2010 9:41 pm

Postby Taranok » Sun Oct 28, 2012 7:43 pm

Why do you want the mod to work well on FMP maps? I would think it would be easier just to forget about those since the most popular maps are standard ones anyways.
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Myk
Posts: 255
Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 12:56 pm

Postby Myk » Mon Oct 29, 2012 4:33 am

[quote name='Taranok' date='28 October 2012 - 12:43 PM' timestamp='1351453382' post='11218']
Why do you want the mod to work well on FMP maps? I would think it would be easier just to forget about those since the most popular maps are standard ones anyways.
[/quote]

Probably because I care about non-standard maps. Further, about 95%* of projects on this site are all designed around doing the standard map thing and they do it fine.

That issue is already solved: resource detection, ripped right out of old Raynor scripts (unless I lost them, then I'll have to wizard that shit up).
The bigger issue is creating an economic model that makes sense, works simply and plainly, and also beats the default setup (the income ramps up by insane amounts compared to what I actually want). I've got some STF source code to pick through so I can look at how they adjusted the unit costs and stuff like that, if I can even understand it. There's a dead simple (but not plain enough) alternative that I could drop into place with no problems too.

*These being the old Raynor scripts that detected FPM stuff and didn't break apart, M_K's cheating scripts, PEAI, and some others like our Extreme scripts and so on.

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