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Author Topic: Basic Combat  (Read 8080 times)

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Basic Combat
« on: April 01, 2010, 09:24:33 PM »

Compared to other browser games Mech Hero's key differentiator is the introduction of tactical elements on the battlefield. In a normal MMOSG the force of an army is determined mostly by its size. In Mech Hero, the basis of success is to create an army, which is efficient and effective. An army in Mech Hero, does not consist of hundreds or thousands of units.

Every unit in Mech Hero consists of four parts:
- mech chassis
- equipment (weapons, shields, transport platforms)
- behavior
- experience

::: Mech chassis :::
The chassis is the base of every battle unit. It determines its size and in a way, its usage.

Every chassis is defined by four parameters:
- hull strength – chassis's resistance to damage
- equipment capacity – the amount of equipment (weapons, armor and transport platforms) that a mech can be equipped with
- speed – the speed of a mech when moving between bases and on the battlefield
- cell usage – the amount of Power Cells which are used by an unarmed chassis per hour

These parameters are of course connected to each other to a certain degree. Hull strength, equipment capacity and cell usage increase along with unit's size. If units have similar hull strength and equipment capacity but different speed, then the faster unit uses more Power Cells.

::: Equipment :::

There are 21 conventional and 3 anti-building weapon types available in Mech Hero. Anti-building weapons will be a subject of a separate post. Here, we will focus on conventional ones.

Each weapon is described by the following parameters:
- ballistic damage – the amount of ballistic damage caused by a single shot
- energy damage – the amount of energy damage caused by a single shot
- range – weapon’s effective range
- reload speed – determines the number of turns required to reload (1 – the weapon fires in each turn, 2 – the weapon fires every second turn, 3 – the weapon fires once every 3 turns)
- accuracy – the chance of hitting within maximum range (the chance of hitting increases when the distance to the target decreases)
- weight – weapon's weight (total weapons weight cannot exceed  mech's equipment capacity)
- cell usage – the number added to mech's cell usage when armed with this weapon (weapons that are stored in the Inventory Warehouse do not consume Power Cells)

Ballistic damage and energy damage work the same. Both damage types decrease your opponent's hull strength and can cause its destruction. The only difference is that ballistic damage can be reduced when armor plates are used and energy damage can be reduced when force fields are used.

Watch out for rockets! Remember, that each rocket can be fired only once (this includes LR-86 Missile Pod)! Rockets have big range and big fire power, but using rockets requires a big amount of resources, because they need to be re-produced. An army equipped only with rockets does not have sufficient fire power to destroy an opposing army of similar size.

Shields increase mech's natural armor. Unlike the chassis's hull, shields do not provide protection against all types of damage – depending on the type used, shields will work either on ballistic or energy weapons.

Shields are described with the following parameters:
- ballistic defense – the amount of ballistic damage that can be absorbed by the shield (applicable to armor plates)
- energy defense – the amount of energy damage that can be absorbed by the shield (applicable to force fields)
- regeneration rate – the amount of damage that is regenerated on a shield in each turn
- weight – shield's weight (total equipment weight cannot exceed mech's equipment capacity)
- cell usage – the number added to mech's cell usage when the shield is used (shields that are stored in the Inventory Warehouse do not consume Power Cells)

Transport platforms:
Transport platforms are used to transport resources and equipment obtained from the opponent after battle is won.

They are described by the following parameters:
- transport capacity – how much a platform can carry (25 means that a platform can carry equipment of total weight of 25 or 2500 resources)
- weight – platform's weight (total equipment weight cannot exceed mech's equipment capacity)
- cell usage – the number added to mech's cell usage when equipped with the platform (platforms stored in the Inventory Warehouse do not consume Power Cells)

Transport platforms in Mech Hero are divided into two groups: regular and anti-gravity. Anti-gravity platforms (X-2M and X-2X) are much more expensive than regular platforms but are almost 2 times more efficient. It means that by occupying the same amount of mech's equipment capacity, they can carry out almost twice as many resources or equipment from the enemies’ base.

::: Behavior :::

For less advanced players we strongly recommend to start with pre-defined behavior templates. More info about those can be found here:

In a mech's behavior tab you determine the algorithm according to which the mech will act on the battlefield. You can define the way of picking a target, moving around the battlefield and the escape conditions. Not every behavior is available for a mech from the beginning. Some, more advanced, need to be unlocked on the mech's upgrade tab. These options are referred to by the following tags:
[DEF] – orders available after unlocking “Enemy defense analysis”
[WEP] – orders available after unlocking “Enemy weapons analysis”
[AdvT] – orders available after unlocking “Advanced tactics”

The description for options located in the Behavior tab:

Target selection – target selection is performed according to the following algorithm:
1. Opponents are sorted according to the parameter from the first drop-down list.
2. From that list, bottom 50% is cut off.
3. The new list is sorted according to the second parameter.
4. The first mech on that list is chosen as the target.

Available parameter values:
- Random
- Lowest hull strength
- Highest hull strength
- Closest
- [WEP] Longest weapon range
- [WEP] Strongest weapons
- [AdvT] Escaping
- [DEF] Weakest armors
- [DEF] Weakest shields
- [WEP] Anti-building weapons
- [AdvT] Slowest
- [AdvT] Fastest
- [AdvT] Targeted by most friendly units
- [WEP] Doing most damage
- [AdvT] Not escaping
- Same target as General
- [AdvT] Clustered Enemies

Mech is searching for a target within its shortest weapon range. If it does not find any close target it will start looking further.

Movement strategy – determines the way a mech moves on the battlefield.
- Maintain position – the mech stays in the same spot it started the battle in
- Move to max range – the mech moves to the position from which it can fire a weapon and stops. It does not change position until a target is within its firing range.
- Keep max distance – the mech tries to maintain a distance equal to its maximum weapon range
- [AdvT] Keep min distance – the mech tries to maintain distance equal to its minimum weapon range
- [AdvT] Keep out of enemy weapons range – the mech tries to move outside of its current target's firing range
- Move forward & back – the mech moves forward until it reaches the edge of the battlefield, then moves in the opposite direction. The mech will 'bounce' off the battlefield's edges until the end of the battle, it escapes or is destroyed.
- Stick with the target – the mech tries to maintain the shortest possible distance to its target
- [AdvT] Stay out of enemies weapon range - the mech tries to move outside of all opponent's firing range

When using “Keep max distance”, “Keep min distance” and “Keep out of enemy weapons range” it often happens that a mech moves away from its target, heading towards the edge of the battlefield (the mech moves in the opposite of the firing direction). In such case, the mech will move with half of its normal speed.

Change target – The conditions for changing the target. These conditions are combined with logical “or” - if at least one condition is fulfilled, the mech changes its target.
- Each turn
- Target destroyed
- [WEP] Target disarmed
- Target out of max. weapon range
- Target is escaping

Condition “Each turn” is always true. Placing “Each turn” in any drop-down causes the mech to change target in each turn ignoring the remaining settings.
Condition “Target destroyed” is a dead condition (mech has to change a target anyway if the opponent is destroyed), so it will work as a logical “0” and turn off the drop-down in which it is set.

Escape – escape conditions. The conditions are combined with a logical “or” - if at least one condition is true, the mech begins to run away.
- Never
- No weapons
- No armors
- No shields
- [AdvT] No armor and shields
- [AdvT] Hull strength < 75%
- Hull strength < 50%
- [AdvT] Hull strength < 25%
- Out of rockets
- Anti-building weapons lost
- No transport platforms
- [AdvT] 50% of friendly units is out
- General is escaping

Condition “Never” works like a logical “0”. Setting this condition turns off the drop-down in which it is set. In order for a mech to actually never escape, you need to set “Never” in all 3 drop-downs.

If a mech goes into escape mode it cannot return to the battle. It tries to move outside of the battlefield.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2010, 06:04:49 PM by AndyMadas »