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Go Back   .com.unity Forums > Illwinter Game Design > Dominions 3: The Awakening > Scenarios, Maps and Mods

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  #1  
Old October 7th, 2006, 08:39 PM

DominionsFan DominionsFan is offline
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Default The hardest part of modmaking...balance!

So...balance is definitely the hardest part in modmaking. Unit gfx can be awesome, the sound effects also, but if the balance is not perfect, the whole mod is useless. We need some formulas for balance.

Let's start with units. How should we figure out the gold/resource cost of the units?
Example:

Unit A has -
HP 10
attack 10
defense 10
str 10
precision 10
protection 10
morale 25
MR 10
encumbrance 3

Let's say that Unit A's recruitement cost is 10 gold and 1 resource.

Unit B has -
HP 15
attack 13
defense 9
str 12
precision 11
protection 9
morale 32
MR 12
encumbrance 4

Now how much this unit should cost?

..and this is just a basic question, since there is another factor, the equipments of the units. Equipments can also raise the recruitment cost of a specific unit.

This is a bit complicated, perhaps we should figure out some basic code to adjust the recruitment cost of the units.
[Example: +5HP = +8 gold, +2 att = +5 gold&4 resources etc.]
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"Training is principally an act of faith. The athlete must believe in its efficacy: he must believe that through training he will become fitter and stronger, that by constant repetition of the same movements he will become more skillful."
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  #2  
Old October 7th, 2006, 10:01 PM

Shovah32 Shovah32 is offline
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Default Re: The hardest part of modmaking...balance!

There cant be a formula imo because it depends on what each nation has avaliable, a nation with poor magic should have cheap, fairly effective units, a magic heavy nation should have either medium cost, low quality troops or high quality troops but both them and the mages being over-priced.
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Old October 7th, 2006, 11:13 PM

FrankTrollman FrankTrollman is offline
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Default Re: The hardest part of modmaking...balance!

Unfortunately, that's true. Formulas really aren't more useful than eyeballing things. A Precision of 11 doesn't mean anything for a unit that doesn't have a ranged weapon, nor does a Precision of 5. But for a unit with a Lightning attack, the precision of 11 would be "pretty good" and a precision of 5 would virtually invalidate the unit.

Morales of 25 or 32 basically shouldn't happen at all, they make too many important parts of the game go away (fear, awe, repelling, etc.), so IMO neither of the presented stat lines should be recruitable under any circumstances. But if they were armed with daggers and clothed in furs they'd still be a crappy deal at virtually any price.

Sadly, the number of variables involved in balancing a troop are so numerous that a chart of any kind is simply incapable of handling it. W aren't talking about something that would fit in a vertical and horizontal axis. You've got a unit's most useful purpose, you've got how good it is at fulfilling that function against the other factions in the appropriate time frame, you've got the available magicians of the faction and the spells and support it's likely to get. You've got how vulnerable the unit is to a wide variety of potential schemes to circumvent it, and so on. Already we're at a five dimensinal table that itself has some fudge factors (you can be resilient in melee by having a large HP, Prot, or Defense, for example - but Defense counts less for large creatures and more for smaller creatures and so on), you can' even display that intabular form, even with a spiral-bound book.

The human mind is a very powerful (if somewhat slow) computer. It can handle these problems. An Abacus (table) or electronic computer iss simply incapable of solving a problem that is that complex. Honestly, your "gut feeling" about a unit is fundamentally a better gauge of the utility and balance of that unit than any mathematical formula you could possibly write.

-Frank
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  #4  
Old October 8th, 2006, 03:48 AM
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Endoperez Endoperez is offline
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Default Re: The hardest part of modmaking...balance!

Compare. Compare compare compare. And also remember that gold cost mainly comes from training (stats) and special abilities, while resource costs come automatically from armor with a bit extra added for the creature itself.

The first one would be 10 gold, but NOT with that morale. As Frank said, it doesn't work that way.

The second one, without the morale again, would be somewhat comparable to an Abysian unit. They are better than humans and should be priced accordingly. The rec price would be between 14 and 18 gp or so, probably.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 06:48 AM

DominionsFan DominionsFan is offline
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Default Re: The hardest part of modmaking...balance!

Well yeah those were examples lads. Endo that is a good idea, resource cost should come from armors/weapons mainly, while gold should come from abilities and special abilites. This mod will be hellish hard to balance, however once it will be public, the players can also have suggestions about the balance.
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"Training is principally an act of faith. The athlete must believe in its efficacy: he must believe that through training he will become fitter and stronger, that by constant repetition of the same movements he will become more skillful."
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Old October 9th, 2006, 03:30 PM
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Default Re: The hardest part of modmaking...balance!

Did you check out the old Dom2 mod manual? He gave some suggestions for balancing new units there.
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  #7  
Old October 9th, 2006, 05:03 PM

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Default Re: The hardest part of modmaking...balance!

Not really, I've never made any mods for Doms 2. I will take a look at it.
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