Solaris: Browser-based, free, space, abstract, slow 4X (turn based game starting soon)

I was able to submit initial orders as usual.

Ok I’m ready now.

The game will start 4 hours after @RothdaTheTruculent grabs a seat. The other 8 players are in.

Sorry for the slow response, Monday is orgy day. I’m back in the game now though.

It’s cool that the game devs thought about this already and put in a delay to start after everyone arrives.

I went to bed when the game hadn’t started. I woke up and my navy had already fought a battle. Oops.

There is a player on the map about whom all I can see is one carrier. And when I click on the info screen for that player, it shows that their income is $-3. Therefore standard carrier maintenance is $3 ;)

The pace of the game is pleasantly slow, but some things really do have tight timing. In the QT3 game, my carrier arrived -three ticks- ahead of someone else’s explorer here:
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I suspect we had launched at approximately the same time (I don’t recall seeing his fleet en route when I launched). Because I logged on just after my carrier arrived on the star, I was able to put a specialist on it in order to hold the star against the other player’s exploration fleet. Since you can’t add a specialist in flight, my window to do so was 1.5 hrs wide (the carrier had to be at the star, and the other fleet had to have not arrived yet), and it didn’t line up against the production tick. A player who is not logging in frequently is going to miss opportunities like that.

This is only my third game, and my other two were newbie games. For longer games, when the universe is more fully explored and developed, are these types of opportunities still occurring? Or do the huge fleets in the late game with the large universes basically override the time sensitive events?

This is a valid observation. I am still learning what pace and style I like best in this game. It is very customizable, but I suspect people preference’s will differ. At the moment I am leaning towards preferring turn-based. This first bigger 9-player game is real time.

Yes, there continue to be opportunities to log in more frequently and react more often to opponents. I did this in a large game where I was slowly losing. I would see where the opponents were attacking, and then shift around ships and add specialists (like you did) to make their attacks worthless or less effective. It did not make me win, but it dragged out the conclusion.

Ideally there is some balance between the “steady ongoing pace” of real time, and the “everyone reacts at the same time” of turn based. I am going to observe how we all do in the 9 player game, and then see what settings to propose next.

I would approach this 9-player game as a big learning exercise. :-)

The bigger 9-person real time game, and the smaller test 5-person turn based game, are both running smoothly.

@Janster appears to have conceded defeat in both games. Am interested in his opinion, if he cares to share it. To be clear: these are early test games, not everyone will love them, and its obviously Ok to bow out. :-)

Other than that, the rest of the games and players appear competitive. The interesting part of the Dark game is you have no idea what is happening elsewhere!

While we’re all here, does anyone have any idea what Terraforming does? I now have one level in it, and as far as I can tell all my costs are still the same. I wasn’t able to find any hard numbers about it, just that it’s supposed to make development cheaper.

I read the code to figure it out. :D

Terraforming research adds 5 terraformed resources per star. Calculated resources are just natural resources + this bonus, which is called “Terraformed Resources” in the UI. The cost for things is divided by a factor equal to calculated resources / 100. Thus as your calculated resources approach 100, your cost approaches the “true cost”, I guess you could call it. An upgrade for a star with 20 terraformed resources (let’s say 15 natural plus one terraforming research point) will cost 5 times the cost of an upgrade for a 100 terraformed resources star. I noticed in the UI that if you go below 1 terraforming research points (via a specialist) then it will still show you having at least 1 (so terraformed resources shows natural resources + 5). I don’t know if the code reflects that or not.

Upgrade costs also scale based on the number of things you already built, but only of that type. There is no penalty for stuffing onto a star a bunch of one type of upgrade to the other upgrade types.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaah. That makes much more sense. Thank you!

Anyways, I can’t stress enough how much this is NOT a “check every 10 hours” game. It’s just not. You will get completely wrecked if that’s how you play.

Also I am not a fan of combat in this game. Weapons changes things so drastically. I would think a 100-100 ship battle would be sort of even but by golly it’s absolutely not if the weapons are different. I guess you could say I thought Weapons 1 would be like a gun and Weapons 3 is a big gun, but instead Weapons 1 is a club and Weapons 3 is an AK47.

Default real-time is 1 tick per 30 mins, with 20 ticks per production, which means 10 hours for production cycles which is obviously just over two cycles per day.

Default turn-based is 6 ticks per turn, with 20 ticks per production, which is 3.3 turns per production. There is also a 24 hour “max turn wait”. If all turns are at 75% max waiting time then that is 18 hours * 3.3 = 60 hours per production.

I wonder if you can have best of both worlds. Turn based, so everyone reacts at the same time. But a shorter max turn wait (down from 24 to 12 hours) so the game advances twice per day, with more ticks per turn (up from 6 to 10) so production comes a little more often.

The result would be engaging with it twice per day (or more if people get turns in faster), and each day has at least one production cycle. And if people miss a 12 hour max timer, too bad, the game advances by 10 ticks. (But it plays great on mobile devices, so its easy to play anywhere.)

Thoughts?

Research is super super important, mostly for good Weapons. Low research and low weapons score means you will lose. I like the tension vs industry and economy, its hard to get the perfect balance.

People will need to check in before most ticks if they are gonna compete. So I’d say 4 ticks per 12 hour production would be a much easier game for most people to handle.

Do you agree that a turn-based game but with shorter increments would be “fairer” (and less time consuming) than a real time game?

Do you mean shorter as in more frequent? If so no, I do not think it would be less time consuming. Fair is certainly a goal. I don’t think you can get to fair aside playing it completely in real time with completely invested people.

Ok I think we need to be specific. Your initial reply was hard for me to parse. I propose:

Turn-based
Ticks per turn = 10 (up from 6)
Production per turn = 20 (default)
Max waiting time aka turn timer = 12 hours (down from 24)

What did you propose? I think we agree in general, interested in your specific version.