The Art of the Starting position

By on August 11, 2012 11:47:48 AM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

Frogboy

Join Date 03/2001
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The most delicate balancing act we perform in Elemental: Fallen Enchantress is the starting position.  How close should monsters be? How powerful should those monsters be? How near should we place more powerful monsters? How many resources should be near? How many goodie huts should be near? What about quests?

The user has considerable control over this based on their start-up settings. However, we all know that most people will go by the default settings – at least at first.  So we spend a lot of time playing around with these values along.

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Here I’ve unhidden the map and turned on the grid in the cloth map view.  As you can see, there are lots of monsters here but they have all been carefully balanced such that a player should be able to defeat them if they are careful and don’t try to mow them all down (i.e. defeat means player is at full health).

Since the maps are randomly generated, including the continents themselves, it can be pretty tricky making sure that the resource placement and map itself remains fair. In a traditional land based 4X, there’s no magic. By adding magic, we significantly increase the challenge. 

However, when successful, the reward is great: unprecedented replay ability. 

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August 15, 2012 9:44:01 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I haven't played for awhile, but one thing that turned me off was that the maps didn't actually look like any real landmass.  I loved the map that came with the novel, and I used it most games in WoM.  Are there going to be any premade maps available, are there already and I don't know it since I haven't played FE in a long time, or will the randomly generated maps be made to actually look like real landmasses?

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August 15, 2012 11:12:12 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

There does seem to be a square theme in the land mass stamps, which does not look like a real land mass. It's hard to make tiles look rounded, but maybe if cliffs and beaches rounded out some? Not my area of expertise, but I can promise you that releasing the workshop would allow me to finish my Vvardenfell map. I have the land mass done and all the mountains. I just need to port it over to FE and hope the two map modding programs are compatible. 

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August 15, 2012 2:07:44 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ,

The most delicate balancing act we perform in Elemental: Fallen Enchantress is the starting position.   ...  

                                                                               o  o  o


Since the maps are randomly generated, including the continents themselves, it can be pretty tricky making sure that the resource placement and map itself remains fair. In a traditional land based 4X, there’s no magic. By adding magic, we significantly increase the challenge. 

However, when successful, the reward is great: unprecedented replay ability. 

Thanks, Frogboy!  This is another posting by you, that I very much appreciate seeing ... especially as a preamble to your roll-out of the Beta 4. 

We all know that you have gotten a  "ton"  of feedback on this subject, especially in the many weeks since the Beta 3 came out.  And, at that, an awful lot of the feedback was pretty critical -- and not all of it was entirely fair, given the complexity of the subject.   But clearly there was a core of truth to it; and it is great to see that you have been seriously thinking about this aspect of the game. 

I reserve all further judgements and comments on this subject, for the time being -- I am very much looking forward to discovering how the Beta 4 has been altered and improved, in this very genuinely important area!      

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August 15, 2012 6:27:06 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I kinda like orions reply #28... thats nice

Sincerely
~ Kongdej

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