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News: New blog post: Revisiting the Intel UI (05/07/18); Starsector 0.8.1a is out!
 
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Author Topic: Bounties and Other Missions... Probabilities  (Read 255 times)
xenoargh
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« on: May 17, 2018, 07:06:27 PM »

So, now that the whole Intel UI is getting reworked, etc., can we maybe get a fix to the other issues with Missions and Bounties in particular?

The way that Bounties work now, it's using a weighted-randomizer, favoring the biggest Markets to generate Bounties.

That works fine, unless one Faction happens to have a lot more weight than others.  In Vanilla, we can see the Bounty Missions getting skewed heavily in favor of Hegemony, for example; if you're taking down Bounties to gain rep, it might take forever to gain rep with the smaller Factions, even if they offer Bounties at all.

I'd like to propose that:

1.  Each Faction, in the .faction file, has a variable governing  how often, on any given day, a Market in that polity will generate Missions, say, something like:

"chanceToGenerateMission:[0.1,0.3,0.5,1.0,0.5],

This would regulate the chances of generating a new trade mission, a new delivery mission, a new exploration mission, a new attack mission or a new Bounty mission each day, using the Markets in a weighted-random distribution.

2.  Each Faction would have a MaxMissions variable, as well, limiting the number of Missions of <type>

maxMissions:[15,4,3,1,5]

This would replace the current system using the Markets generically, allowing tuning of the Factions' relative behaviors in regards to offering missions to players.  If the Intel revamp is going to finally get rid of the boring part of missions (traveling from location to location to find one we want to do) then this will also help make sure that players aren't stuck / bored hoping to find a Bounty for Tritach to get them a little closer to Cooperative, etc.

On the modding end, it'd also make things easier; a bit of code could run like:  generateBountyMission("hegemony",4,7,2.0f,0.7f)

...which would build a Bounty mission, using the Faction ID named, the min / max size of the Markets creating the Mission (and therefore the relative Bounty size and payout) and a "size" factor that could be used to buff / nerf the size of the generated fleet and a "quality" factor that could be used to buff / nerf the quality of the generated fleet the player would have to defeat.

Anyhow, something like that would be a big improvement over the current system, where some Factions are a lot easier to get missions for than others, depending on the type.
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Sarissofoi
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« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2018, 08:52:25 AM »

Isn't generating bounties based on market size more natural?
Especially if you use Nex?
I mean big factions gotta have more people who stepped on their toes and are in need of spanking.
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xenoargh
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« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2018, 01:04:20 PM »

It seems that way, yes, but the end result is mainly that, due to how the weighted-random system works, some Factions hardly ever get missions, especially Bounties.  This produces pretty dull gameplay at times, where we're sitting around, waiting for a Bounty to show up.

I fixed that in EZ Faction by making such a huge number of Bounties generate that pretty much every Faction will get a few now and then, but noticed that it still skewed so heavily towards big Factions that minor ones with small Markets hardly got any Bounties even then.  That's why I think this should be fixed; it was a nice idea but the results are mainly un-fun, for those of us who don't want to ally with the biggest Factions every play-through.

Granted, in the next build, Market sizes can go up / down over time, causing different results, but unless Factions are nuking / capturing each others' bases on a regular basis, causing huge shifts in Markets, we'll still have these problems.
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Gothars
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« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2018, 03:01:23 PM »

I'm under the impression that missions will be global in the next version, not per-market.
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xenoargh
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« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2018, 09:11:08 AM »

That'd be great; I really feel pretty strongly that this an area where things just didn't quite work as planned.  Hopefully we'll have tools to tune things so that the Factions aren't ever completely mission-starved; I don't mind if <faction> isn't overflowing with Bounties, but as things stand, sometimes it's weeks before you see Bounties for the smaller Factions.
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