Metal Makers

Discussion in 'Planetary Annihilation General Discussion' started by yogurt312, March 2, 2013.

?

Do we want metal makers

  1. yes

    126 vote(s)
    47.0%
  2. no

    101 vote(s)
    37.7%
  3. maybe

    41 vote(s)
    15.3%
  1. yogurt312

    yogurt312 New Member

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    Mavor recently stated that metal makers are still up in the air, and i'd like to preface this that regardless of any decision they make now that they will still be up in the air until late beta. Also that they have more information about the game and how they want it to play then we do.

    all that being said, metal makers represent an incredibly energy inefficient way to make metal, supplementing your economy. So i pose the question do you think metal makers should be in this game and why?
  2. stevenside

    stevenside Member

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    i dont see why they shouldnt be. Turtlers might like them, or people having limited access to deposits.
  3. KNight

    KNight Post Master General

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    Honestly, I don't think they're worth the trouble, we've seen how int SupCom(not FA) and SupCom2 how easily they can mix things up.

    I think just keeping them out of the game will help promote territory control even more.

    Mike
    RainbowDashPwny likes this.
  4. hearmyvoice

    hearmyvoice Active Member

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    Well they already made them far more better in FA, so why would mess them up now? It's bad to remove things from the game just because they might destroy the game if done wrong. Anything can destroy the game if done wrong. They add depth to the game if done right, because players have more alternatives. I haven't really used them in FA, but lately I've thought that maybe I should try them out sometime.

    Supcom2 failed many things but that's another story and these devs had no part in it.
  5. igncom1

    igncom1 Post Master General

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    Can we have recyclers instead?
  6. neutrino

    neutrino low mass particle Uber Employee

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    Basically we'll see. As I said it's up in the air. Multiple playfields changes things enough that I'm not sure they are needed.
  7. Consili

    Consili Member

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    I wouldn't mind having them, but there again I wouldn't mind if the game play necessitated their absence from PA. I am up for whatever option works best with the concept of multiple battlefields.
  8. bobucles

    bobucles Post Master General

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    Metal makers turn excess energy into more units. In effect, it creates an exchange rate between metal and energy. How many peewees should a solar panel be able to produce? A fusion plant? No matter what game you play, metal makers are used to sacrifice current strength to have a stronger future economy. In a way, it ends up like a tech research system. A huge investment in fab farms gives a stronger future, with more money and a bigger army.

    Metal makers can easily spiral out of control if they're too effective. They can also be huge liabilities for your base when they blow up. Ultimately, I think they're flawed because money should be doing stuff that is meaningful to the game. Everything gets screwed up when your system is an endless spiral of using money to make more money. As things begin to spiral, the hard work of capturing land and excelling in battle becomes meaningless. (Eco 201 lesson, right there)

    In TotalA, a dedicated fusion plant could generate a peewee in 3 seconds, and a fusion economy could double in 5 minutes. In FA doubling the economy took about 10 minutes, faster with adjacency.
  9. kmike13

    kmike13 Member

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    I'm very biased towards not having metal makers due to playing supcom 2 on Xbox where the best strategy on the game involved not building a single Mass extractor and going for mass conversion right away.

    I'm sure it works better in supcom FA and total annihilation, but I think there's just too much risk in using them.
  10. ledarsi

    ledarsi Post Master General

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    In my opinion, SupCom should be proof that the exchange-rate style metal maker is a dysfunctional system and should not be implemented in PA. A flat amount of energy to create a flat amount of metal will run away under some circumstances.

    I think Zero-K has invented a vastly superior system in the form of overdrive. Energy is used to make mexes yield more metal. You compare your excess energy to your number of mexes, with overdrive resulting in extra metal.

    Most importantly, overdrive has diminishing returns linked to how many mexes you have. This means that the more energy you are spending to get more metal, the more advantage you would gain from an additional mex to spread your metal out between more mexes, resulting in simultaneously higher metal income and higher overdrive efficiency.

    I'm not saying PA should copy ZK verbatim. But the basic idea in overdrive is that the more heavily overdriven you are, the less efficient you become. And this creates an increasing incentive to expand to more mexes.
  11. nuendo

    nuendo New Member

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    I agree that they should be taken out.
    Instead I think there should be more and better options of extracting metal on planetary scale, different extractors, refinery's etc. I think it would be cool to have rare metal veins which would spawn less frequently but provide extractors with more metal per sec.
    so there's Metal, Titanium, Thorium, Iridium, just an example - the list goes on.
  12. kmike13

    kmike13 Member

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    Although I don't necesarilly agree with all these new metal types, I do agree with more creative ways to gain metal resources that don't cause an infinitely large economy.
  13. NortySpock

    NortySpock Member

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    I was initially on the fence but after reading the subtle ways they can be "abused" I'm leaning towards no metal makers.

    I'm cautiously interested in alternatives like the aforementioned Overdrive or maybe having high-yield veins ("White metal spots are good but metallic blue veins yield double!")
    ace902902 likes this.
  14. Pawz

    Pawz Active Member

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    I'd go with no metal makers. Metal makers take away from the importance of terrain, and promote packing as much stuff behind a single defensive line compared to being required to defend all the resources in the ground.

    ZeroK's overdrive was a step in the right direction, although it has some serious issues with making it easy for players to understand where their energy was going and how efficiently their overdrive really was. So while it's a step in the right direction, I believe the breaking the link between energy and metal is the best decision.

    I would support, however, a method of increasing the amount of metal that can be extracted from a particular location. My particular preference would be for a metal extractor 'upgrade' which is built as a series of structures around the mex. Each completed circle would increase the metal extraction rate. As the player finishes a circle, it becomes part of the metal extractor.

    Like this:

    x = 1x

    YYY
    YXY = 2x
    YYY


    YYYYY
    YXXXY
    YXXXY = 3x
    YXXXY
    YYYYY

    YYYYYYY
    YXXXXXY
    YXXXXXY
    YXXXXXY = 4x
    YXXXXXY
    YXXXXXY
    YYYYYYY


    This would make it dead easy to see how much the enemy has upgraded, it would increase the amount of space you need around your mexes to upgrade, and it would make upgraded mexes even bigger targets. And you (probably) wouldn't even have to limit the size of the mex, as each successive upgrade would increase exponentially in cost.
  15. torrasque

    torrasque Active Member

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    Another possible way to go is to make a mix between a metal extractor and a metal maker:
    A metal extractor that is boosted with excess energy.

    It's not spammable and it's a quite easy concept to understand.
  16. skwibble

    skwibble Member

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    I'm also against metal makers/ mass fabricators in general, basically for the ideas outlines above: disincentivising territorial expansion and making the two resource system closer to a one resource system.

    I'm uneasy about the principle of this idea; it may become tedious to manage unless the mexes could do it automatically, and you would have to make sure to not build structures near the mexes in the first place.

    And I think it would technically be a quadractic increase rather than exponential. Which may be slightly more conductive to a massive mex array than an exponential one, particularly in a several hour-long game.

    But the increased vulnerability and rapid increase in cost would help to dissuade extremly big arrays, which I agree is a good thing.
  17. godde

    godde Well-Known Member

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    That is basically how Zero-K overdrive works. You get diminishing returns the more energy you pump into the mex.
  18. yogurt312

    yogurt312 New Member

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    you could implement the overdrive system in an increased amount of units way, such as:

    Normal Mex 2/10
    Overcharged Mex 6/200
    Moho Mex 8/60

    I'm sure that thought could be built upon, its far from perfect as is but things get complicated and start to go against the ideals of usability when you create something with a variable metal drain.
  19. RealTimeShepherd

    RealTimeShepherd Member

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    I'm against metal makers, broadly for the reasons described above.

    Surprisingly, most people who have posted seem to be against them but the poll says different. Does this mean that the posters are against the popular opinion? Any ideas why that might be?

    Edit: I like Pawz idea for the metal extractor upgrades...!
  20. igncom1

    igncom1 Post Master General

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    I still feel like a more efficient way of scouring the land would be a better alternative metal source.

    So reclaimer towers is my vote, in order to scoop up the wreaks of a battle directly into a players storage.

    As paws idea seems a little user intensive, why not just an upgrade like the add-ons in starcraft?

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