8 player maximum

By on July 25, 2009 11:50:19 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

CapnWinky

Join Date 09/2008
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I've noticed their is an 8 player maximum for the game. Is that just human players or a combonation of AI & human? I hope it''s not the latter because I think 8 players will make those huge 64 bit maps a little barren. I was looking at the elemental/civ4 map comparison post. They showed how much bigger an Elemental map is going to be yet it comes nowhere near what a Civ4 maps can support (in terms of  AI or human players).  

What do you all think?

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July 27, 2009 2:42:40 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Awac A,
Do it matter? i mean how often do you play with more then 8 players in these kind of games? This aint Demigod where a fight take 30 min. Now im not sure if Elemental will use a WeGo or IgoUgo system but in general it just tend to drag out if there is to many players.

It definitely matters...  take a look at Dominions_3 where the default game allows 20+ players and a small mod allows 67+ players!!   These games have been all multiplayer; a mix of multiplayer and AI opponents;  and pure singleplayer against AI opponents.

With Elemental providing map sizes far beyond anything previously seen in TBS games... it matters even more!

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July 27, 2009 2:45:27 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Ya, I don't know if anyone else will remember this, but a planed feature for Civ 4 was to have a number of dynamic minor factions. Their goal's would not be to win the game, but to survive. For whatever reason that feature got merged/replaced by the barbarian system.

---I think something like that would be very awesome in this game...especially on larger maps. I can even see a mega event where they all merge into one powerful faction...intent on destroying all humand and fallen!!!

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July 27, 2009 6:00:28 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Awac A,
Do it matter? i mean how often do you play with more then 8 players in these kind of games? This aint Demigod where a fight take 30 min. Now im not sure if Elemental will use a WeGo or IgoUgo system but in general it just tend to drag out if there is to many players.

If you're playing on a map with 3x the area of the largest Civ 4 map and can only have 7 AIs on it? You get an awful lot of empty space.

So yes, the player cap matters unless it doesn't apply to AI.

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July 27, 2009 2:28:25 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

But why is bigger always better? Its like your average paradox game.

NOW WITH 10.000 PROVINCES!!!!¨

I was happy with the 5000 i already had. I rather they improved the gameplay.

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July 27, 2009 2:59:10 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Awac A,
But why is bigger always better? Its like your average paradox game.

NOW WITH 10.000 PROVINCES!!!!¨

If you are patient the larger maps are always better because it means more strategic paths not only on the map, but strategic options and it means much larger armies for larger battles.  I'd rather fight an enemy of 20,000 units, 100 different summons, 15 heroes and 3 unique dragons than an enemy of 1000 units, 10 different summons, 3 heroes and 1 dragon.

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July 29, 2009 5:46:00 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Quoting NTJedi,



Quoting Awac A,
reply 4
But why is bigger always better? Its like your average paradox game.

NOW WITH 10.000 PROVINCES!!!!¨



If you are patient the larger maps are always better because it means more strategic paths not only on the map, but strategic options and it means much larger armies for larger battles.  I'd rather fight an enemy of 20,000 units, 100 different summons, 15 heroes and 3 unique dragons than an enemy of 1000 units, 10 different summons, 3 heroes and 1 dragon.

While I don't share your exact reasoning as it is battle specific instead of exploratory in nature, I too think bigger is better. I was a huge, huge fan of HOMM3 and just exploring random maps was awesome, just to see it was there and even when games ended without the entire world being explored, I thought that added to teh charm. Some of the recent attemps to do a similar style game put time limits on the turns which gave the game a pretty rigid, one way to do it feel. I hate that.

Limiting human players to 8 doesn't seem that limiting to me considering the type of game it is. Heck, I can barely get 2-3 of my gaming friends to finish games that are a lot quicker than that as it is. So long as the game doesn't drag, I suppose there isn't a need to put an artificial limit on human players, but hopefully the boards won't fill up with people complaining about how long games take.

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July 29, 2009 10:49:35 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting NTJedi,
... If you are patient the larger maps are always better because it means more strategic paths not only on the map, but strategic options and it means much larger armies for larger battles.  I'd rather fight an enemy of 20,000 units, 100 different summons, 15 heroes and 3 unique dragons than an enemy of 1000 units, 10 different summons, 3 heroes and 1 dragon.

I'm interested in how the game might manage to produce some truly massive battles, but I'm just as interested (maybe more interested) in having an end-game Ludicrous-size map with most territory either wilderness or controled by Independent Powers. If the basic mechanics enforce or encourage traditional TBS city-spamming, I'll be disappointed. You don't need wall-to-wall cities to enable battles like NTJedi describes. It's just a genre habit.

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July 29, 2009 11:28:02 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I don't quite agree bigger maps always mean more strategic paths. You can't really try a speed/blitz strategy on a huge map. That strategic option is taken off the table due to the size of the area to be conquered.

I would certainly agree that large maps offer different strategies that never could come into play on a small map.

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July 29, 2009 3:56:57 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

But why is bigger always better? Its like your average paradox game.

Bigger is not always better. It's a preference, like most other things. I'm a big fan of gigantic maps - I love the epic feel they impart. It feels like I'm playing in a whole world, whereas smaller maps make me sort of claustrophobic - like I'm trapped in a mountainous cage or something. That said I also like playing on smaller maps time and again, largely because they really do play out very differently. There's more, faster, back and forth in smaller maps. You get the same thing on bigger maps but everything, including moving from place to place, takes longer and so that sense of urgency is often somewhat diminished.

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July 29, 2009 5:19:05 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I ADORE tiny maps! The close borders, the quick offensives, I jst love 'em. However, I also like to have options, to experiment, and to push the boundries. I know I wouldn't be happy if every map was huge, and I can half understand the desire for bigger maps too. I feel we should give people as many choices as possible: the only thing you have to lose is virual memory...

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July 30, 2009 1:05:03 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ckessel,
I don't quite agree bigger maps always mean more strategic paths. You can't really try a speed/blitz strategy on a huge map. That strategic option is taken off the table due to the size of the area to be conquered.

I would certainly agree that large maps offer different strategies that never could come into play on a small map.

Bigger is not always better based on the preferences of the individual, however bigger always does offer more strategic options because it comes down to mathematics.  If you examine a chess board and the number of pieces there's only so many combinations for the first 20 moves... and while there's plenty of options the number of options massively increase if the board itself was increased in size. 

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July 30, 2009 5:09:16 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

The important part I'd say is that player and AI number restrictions are not rooted deep in code but instead are only set on the surface where they are modable.

Since the stated aim for the game is to keep it as moddable as possible I'd say that is quite likely.

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July 30, 2009 7:50:08 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting AIAndy,
The important part I'd say is that player and AI number restrictions are not rooted deep in code but instead are only set on the surface where they are modable.

Since the stated aim for the game is to keep it as moddable as possible I'd say that is quite likely.

Hard limits on this type of thing are usually put in place for technical reasons. Thus, whatever the hard limit actually is, you can't mod it. (If you can, it's not really a hard limit.)

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July 30, 2009 10:43:28 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Tridus,
Hard limits on this type of thing are usually put in place for technical reasons. Thus, whatever the hard limit actually is, you can't mod it. (If you can, it's not really a hard limit.)

Yes, and I hope that it is not a hard limit. And the statement that they will see in beta where they set the limit does not point at a hard limit but instead that they wrote the code at all places up to now for x players (x not fixed).

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July 30, 2009 11:22:22 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Bigger is not always better based on the preferences of the individual, however bigger always does offer more strategic options because it comes down to mathematics.  If you examine a chess board and the number of pieces there's only so many combinations for the first 20 moves... and while there's plenty of options the number of options massively increase if the board itself was increased in size.

Combinatorial permutations != strategic options.  Just because I have 5 ways of moving a knight from point A to B doesn't mean I have 5 strategic options if all of those boil down to the same end effect. The tactical execution of a strategy may get more complicated with a bigger board, but I'm not convinced there are signifcantly more actual strategic options.

Anyway, neither here or there. Regardless, pretty much everyone would agree that we'd like the ability to scale to as large a map as possible even if not everyone would want to play on that kind of map.

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July 30, 2009 11:37:17 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Personally, I'd love to see 32 player support.  No one has to play with that many but I'd like to see the game support it.

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July 30, 2009 10:23:41 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Personally, I'd love to see 32 player support.  No one has to play with that many but I'd like to see the game support it.

If you had play by  e-mail, or similar that did not require the PC to be on 24/7, with turns that happen automatically by themselves (say, turn lasts 1 day, or turn lasts 12 hours)  I can see 32 humans players in 1 game being very possible.

 

Not to mention games with 2-4 human players and 25+ AI players.   

 

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July 30, 2009 11:14:08 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ckessel,

  Just because I have 5 ways of moving a knight from point A to B doesn't mean I have 5 strategic options if all of those boil down to the same end effect. The tactical execution of a strategy may get more complicated with a bigger board, but I'm not convinced there are signifcantly more actual strategic options.

Anyway, neither here or there. Regardless, pretty much everyone would agree that we'd like the ability to scale to as large a map as possible even if not everyone would want to play on that kind of map.

The 5 ways of moving a knight from point A to B will rarely provide the same end effect.  Not only will the end effect be different but his very traveling along the path could encounter a new friend(Independent or Player); a new enemy(Independent or Player; a new quest; a new hidden structure; etc, etc., .  Also the longer the distance from point A to point B also means the more likely something will happen and each event/obstacle/creature/etc means the player will need to make a strategic choice.

Unless you're only safely moving between very secure town A to very secure town B while each path is equally distant with no side structure options and no events.

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July 30, 2009 11:28:38 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Quoting Frogboy,
Personally, I'd love to see 32 player support.  No one has to play with that many but I'd like to see the game support it.

Just to have the option would be great. I personally wouldn't even come close to that number, but that doesn't mean I would want it limited to only cater to my tastes. What would be more important to me is the ability to play against the AI in a Co-op mode, similar to some of the HOMM3 maps (team play). Not sure if that will happen but that is what my group likes best. A good game and co-op against the AI, sold.

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July 31, 2009 12:40:28 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

The 5 ways of moving a knight from point A to B will rarely provide the same end effect.  Not only will the end effect be different but his very traveling along the path could encounter a new friend(Independent or Player); a new enemy(Independent or Player; a new quest; a new hidden structure; etc, etc., .  Also the longer the distance from point A to point B also means the more likely something will happen and each event/obstacle/creature/etc means the player will need to make a strategic choice.

I'm not convinced that bigger maps are inherently more strategic, or that they even provide more fleshy strategic options. Sure there are more little things like "do I explore those ruins or chase down that band of adventurers?" but those are, in a way, more tactical than strategic. In terms of broad, sweeping strategy, there's not much of a difference. You have the same general strategic choices to make; there are many ways of going about accomplishing them in any size map (except maybe ridiculously small ones where there's no room to move...). Deciding whether or not to go up one extra square is hardly the meat of a strategic decision. Strategy is too nebulous to be quantified; it isn't possible to calculate how many strategic choices there are regardless of map size. You could do a crude and misleading 'upper limit' by calculating all the permutations of things you could do on any given turn, but that isn't helpful - strategy is forward thinking, so unless there is a time limit imposed on the game then it is simply impossible to to even calculate the number of permutations of playing any given game.

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July 31, 2009 1:57:54 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Indeed, in some games bigger just means more complicated, but I don't think this is going to be one of those games. Now, no one is saying you HAVE to play on a masive map with 20+ AI's, but I would like the option. Personally I love huge games like that...It just feels more epic. You could have 16+ players in Civ 4, though it didn't really have big enough maps to be able to take advantage of that. GalCiv 2 had great sized maps on Immense, but it didn't have enough player slots...a combination would be awesome!!!

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August 1, 2009 5:38:18 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting pigeonpigeon,

I'm not convinced that bigger maps are inherently more strategic, ...

   The very fact that the exact opposite is also true validates bigger maps are more strategic.  Take a super super tiny map and the strategic options are clearly very limited.   I've played with many chessmasters and any of them will clearly tell you the number of strategic choices would greatly increase if an additional 64 squares are added in between the players of a chessboard as would the strategic options decrease if any squares are removed from the default game board.   It's mathematics, if necessary keep making the tiny map smaller until you recognize the difference. 

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August 2, 2009 2:13:12 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

   The very fact that the exact opposite is also true validates bigger maps are more strategic.  Take a super super tiny map and the strategic options are clearly very limited.   I've played with many chessmasters and any of them will clearly tell you the number of strategic choices would greatly increase if an additional 64 squares are added in between the players of a chessboard as would the strategic options decrease if any squares are removed from the default game board.   It's mathematics, if necessary keep making the tiny map smaller until you recognize the difference.

Comparing a game like Elemental to Chess is a bad analogy. Chess has a small subset of simple rules, on a small board and you can do just one thing on each turn. I would agree with you if we were talking about tactical combat in games like HoMM, but not about something like the whole game in totality. There are so many things you can do in a game like Elemental that are so far beyond the scope of Chess that you'd need to use the Hubble Space Telescope to see it. You can recruit units, use magic, engage in diplomacy... In chess, the number of pieces on the board hardly changes; as the number of pieces dwindle, so do the options. In games like Elemental, the reverse is usually true.

For absurdly small maps where there isn't room to move, sure. But once you pass a critical size, everything blooms to infinity in the absence of a time limit. And with a time limit, the number of permutations of things you could do would be unimaginably large. So large it would look like the number chess games look like an infinitesimal fraction. But as far as I know there will be no time limit, so there is absolutely no upper limit on the number of ways to play a given game. Technically this also applies for absurdly small maps, too!

And even in the presence of time limits... Saying "there are more strategic options in a giant map because you can play 10^643 different ways, whereas you can only play 10^452 ways on a small map" is absurd in the extreme, because no one would ever notice. As long as the smallest number is large enough that a person can't even imagine the vast majority of potential decisions, then adding more is not going to make the game any more strategic.

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August 2, 2009 12:51:23 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting pigeonpigeon,

   Comparing a game like Elemental to Chess is a bad analogy.

   Of course Chess provides significantly less options than Elemental, but for you I always have to use the most basic comparisons available.  These are both TBS games and the main differences is one has only two players, fixed amount of units, no diplomacy, no magic, no structures, etc., etc., which are all extra variables which reduce strategic options... however the point is the size of the chessboard clearly reduces or increases strategic options even for chess. 

For absurdly small maps where there isn't room to move, sure. But once you pass a critical size, everything blooms to infinity in the absence of a time limit. 
 


And even in the presence of time limits... Saying "there are more strategic options in a giant map because you can play 10^643 different ways, whereas you can only play 10^452 ways on a small map" is absurd in the extreme, because no one would ever notice. As long as the smallest number is large enough that a person can't even imagine the vast majority of potential decisions, then adding more is not going to make the game any more strategic.

 The point here is no human would ever recognize all the different strategies, HOWEVER with more being available the gamer is more likely to recognize and have more options because of the larger pool.  Thus it comes down to how many the gamer would recognize during gameplay, NOT how many are actually available.  I'd rather have a pool of strategic options with a larger selection of choices than fewer.

 Here are some of the other benefits available with massively large randomly generated maps:  The massive maps also provide a much greater amount of units which will be fighting on the battlefield by mid and late game due to more resources and structures being available.  The massive maps also provide a game where the human player is more likely to expand quietly and safely for weeks or on the 64bit maps even months.  Based on my experience the larger maps are in higher demand from the singleplayer gamers as well.

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August 2, 2009 2:59:18 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Well, I can surely see that different players prefer different mapsizes and number of players in-game, but im sure we can all agree on that Elemental will be the event of the year for us TBS gamers!

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