Page 1 of 7 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 62

Thread: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

  1. #1

    Default pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    Receiving incoming Wall of Text... No TL;DR's here, sorry fellas.


    Preamble

    Preface:

    1. I don't address any game balance concerns. In fact, I'm absolutely certain I create tons upon tons of imbalances. Tough. Enough +10 HP patches can tweak anything into balance, but they can't change fundamental design problems, so I'm tackling those.
    2. The Zerg are going to seem completely overpowered. That's the point. Warp-In seemed completely overpowered too, but it's been more-or-less stabilized. As I said above, with enough +10 HP tweaks, anything is balanceable.
    3. I'm perfectly aware that this is FAR too huge for Blizz to implement now, even if everybody and their mom loved it. But Heart is up next, and this might inspire Blizz in some way for the future.

    Zerg issues that interest me:

    1. Not enough legitimate macro for Zerg, forces Blizzard to rely on Spawn Larvae to solve everything.
    2. Not enough energy tension on Queen; Creep Tumor is only really necessary once or twice, Transfusion is... yeah. Not used by base Queens.
    3. Not enough innovative mechanics (compare: Force Field, Warp-In, Add-Ons, Cliff-climb).
    4. Not enough natural synergy between units (as opposed to something like MMGM, or Sentry+Colossus).
    5. Not enough macro-oriented mechanics, to differntiate Zerg from micro-intensive Protoss and Terran. We want their gameplay to feel completely unique, not because of LACK of features other races have, but because of abundance of features of a type other races don't have.
    6. Zerg bases lack the "feel" of Zerg bases: artwork and lore suggests they should look and feel alive, but instead we have 6 buildings at the main surrounded by a feature-less ocean of creep.



    These issues seem to have absolutely nothing in common... so it would seem counter-intuitive that a single ADDITION -- not change -- complex as it may be can solve them all. What I propose is focusing on the one Zerg thing that nobody will deny Blizzard has done absolutely right: emphasizing the importance of Creep. And, with Creep, Creep Tumors. And through Creep Tumors... the Queen.

    The Tumor System

    The 101:

    1. Each Creep Tumor can be upgraded individually (for free) into one of a number of Advanced Tumors.
    ----This is hugely macro-intensive and requires constant action across the entire map; but at the same time it's not "required" macro and will net no "automatic" benefit (unlike for instance "free minerals" MULE). It also opens up a lot of new strategies, including blending different Advanced Tumors, or creating a network of a single type.
    2. Advanced Tumors are not Cloaked or Burrowed, which makes them vulnerable to harassment.
    ----This means the Queen will often be forced to recast Creep Tumor, or Overlords used even more. It also means the Zerg Creepscape is now littered with all sorts of funky buildings that make it seem alive and "alien," as Zerg are meant to. It helps make it seem as though the Zerg is actually taking over the map and using it against the other player.
    3. Advanced Tumors (with one exception) generate no Creep.
    ----This means the Queen will often be forced to recast Creep Tumor, or Overlords used even more.
    4. Advanced Tumors provide different benefits to nearby Zerg units, most of them totally passive.
    ----They are not activated abilities, so do not infringe upon Zerg identity. Furthermore, increased similarity between units (in this case, as you'll see) actually helps using them together, creating new synergies.
    5. Creep Tumors are unlocked by morphing different tech structures.
    ----This makes getting an Ultralisk Cavern for its Tumor worthwhile even if you intend to get no Ultralisks -- which in turn makes units like Ultralisks more accessible. "Hey, I've already got a Cavern, why not buy a couple?"

    The Unlocks:

    These are just examples; some may be overpowered, others underpowered. I'm completely open to criticism and willing to change all of them should the need arise. Please don't get bogged down on the specifics. The point here is general illustration.

    Spawning Pool -- Fungal Tumor -- 250 HP -- range double CT's
    Extends Creep to double the range of a Creep Tumor, at the cost of vulnerability.
    ----Basic, common structures grant basic benefits. There's no point in thoroughly rewarding a player for doing something that he can't really avoid.

    Roach Warren -- Cavernous Tumor -- 125 HP -- range 8
    Friendly Burrowed units can move while Burrowed.
    ----Creates synergy between Roach and other units by allowing them to ambush foes similarly. Actually helps Roaches least as with upgrade they don't need CT to burrow move anywhere.

    Baneling Nest -- Vesicular Tumor -- 250 HP -- range 10
    All friendly Zerg units (including air) can Burrow. Air units cannot move while Burrowed even with Cavernous Tumor.
    ----Creates synergy between Baneling and air units by allowing air units to seek refuge from harassing AA near VTs, and by allowing them to morph in relative safety if near Greater Spire's MT.

    Hydralisk Den -- Seismic Tumor -- 125 HP -- range 10
    Friendly Burrowed units are undetectable by Detectors.

    Infestation Pit -- Deviant Tumor -- 350 HP
    Can cast Creep Wall on Creep, range 6, which creates a Force-Field sized wall that has 175 HP and breaks LOS. Creep Wall has a 45 second cooldown.
    ----Essentially a mix between the Overseer's old "Spore Cloud" ability and Force Field. We take advantage of new LOS mechanics (because let's face it, Zerg's melee units could really use it), but with a unique vulnerability and spin.

    Spire -- Brood Tumor -- 350 HP
    Continuously creates Broodlings; timed so that 5 can be alive at once.

    Greater Spire -- Mutable Tumor -- 250 HP -- range 16
    Friendly Burrowed units don't have to Unburrow to morph. (Zerglings, Corruptors)
    ----Helps Zerglings as much as -- if not more than -- Corruptors.

    Ultralisk Cavern -- Pulmonic Tumor -- 125 HP -- range 6
    Friendly Zerg Tumors are coated with Creep, and cannot be differentiated by enemy players without Detection.
    ----Primarily for making Tumors less vulnerable as late-game units become more numerous.

    The Case:

    As you may note, the abilities' placement is not arbitrary. "Weaker" Advanced Tumors are given to those structures that any Zerg will purchase regardless -- Spawning Pool, Infestation Pit, Spire. Furthermore, Tumors from one building often help units from others as well as their own: Baneling Nest's VT allows air units from Spire and Greater Spire to Burrow; Greater Spire's MT allows Zerglings to morph while Burrowed; Roach Warren's CT helps all Zerg units but air move underground, but helps Roaches least, as they have an upgrade to allow this all across the map. The goal of this is to create synergies between unusual combinations of units.

    Appearance-wise the Tumors should not be the "give magical AoE abilities" variety, but should appear to to be structures capable of influencing the Creep in some way. Animations can/should reflect this. For instance, a Mutalisk Burrowing should look like it's being swallowed up by Creep. And so on.

    So again, everything we've done here, apart from making Zerg seem completely OP -- which is a huge part of the point! Don't forget that. These mechanics should start with the idea of being as exciting as possible, and then can be tweaked back to a more manageable state. That's what nets us Warp-In -- in a nutshell:

    -Upgrading Advanced Tumors is a macro-intensive skill that involves tons of decision-making. If SL is still too valuable to switch between one and the other (prompting players to simply get more Queens), with this boost of macro maybe SL could be removed completely, and extra Larva at Hatcheries could simply become the norm.

    -Zerg have plenty of exciting new strategies that take advantage of new mechanics, but in a Zerg-y way that does not provide units with activated abilities like Terrans or Protoss.

    -Creep infested areas are full of Tumors that make the map seem to have come alive. Furthermore, Zerg ambushes should be seen a lot more (and from many different directions!), which is simply a very Zerg-y mechanic to emphasize.

    -By spreading out the unlocks, we can make it more convenient for Zerg players to create units for which they wouldn't otherwise have gotten tech structures, encouraging more dynamic army make-up. Note -- getting Ultralisks isn't any less expensive, it is simply more convenient. Just as getting a Battlecruiser if you happen to already be sitting on a Fusion Core isn't less expensive, or overpowered, it is simply less inconvenient.

    -We're giving the Zerg something of their own. Protoss have Warp-In, which is an entire system, approachable from the POV of units, placement of numerous buildings, exciting strategies, and macro over the course of the entire game. Add-Ons work in similar ways: although they are not quite as "exciting" they still offer plenty of different ways of going about getting exactly what you want. Creep, right now, is too one-dimensional.


    I look forward to C&C. Hopefully you guys can approach the entire idea, as opposed to singular specifics which are naturally too complicated for any one person to figure out on paper in a few short hours. I think Creep Tumors and Overlord Creep have done a lot to make the Zerg feel Zerg-y in SC2, but I don't think it's quite enough. My intent here is to focus on the good and expand on it in a creative way that stays true to the Zerg racial identity, and hopefully that makes sense to you guys.
    http://img687.imageshack.us/img687/7699/commun1.png

  2. #2

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    Nice idea! The obvious problem I see though is that there is too much different tumor types making it a bit too complex. I think that the number of tumor types should be limited to something like 3 (one for each hatchery's form).

  3. #3

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    I have several things to say, but the first is this:

    This is one of the coolest ideas I've seen for the Zerg

    It certainly looks to be OP in some cases, but it certainly adds an identity to the Zerg. Terran tend to wall in and bust out with huge armies, protoss tend to be sneaky and warp-in stuff and pull off powerful armies, but Zerg...more than just their "wall of units" this would make it actually feel like the Zerg are taking over the map. Creep spread was a good way towards this, but this definitely would add a new feel to it.

    You would feel like you are getting infested. And that is just as important as the actual power of the abilities themselves.
    Without a home. Without a people. Without mercy. The Arcani

    Blizzard's Exact Mathematical Definition of Soon™: {soon|1 month<soon<∞}

    Another?!

  4. #4

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    I like the creativity if nothing else, but..yeah, nothing else.

    See, theirs more then design then creativity. Currently, creep provides a sizable, yet not essential benefit when on it, some neat bonuses, a home turf advantage to make up for the fact that the zerg lack the ability to create wall offs, and lack defensive units.

    But it isn't essential. It isn't a centerpiece for SC. Your suggestion makes creep a centerpiece for Zerg play. In which case, you have to account for the gameplay implications of the system you are now implementing as a core racial dynamic.

    Specifically, you are implementing a binary system. A zerg is either on creep, or not. Due to the overwhelming effects that such a system implies, zerg will either be balanced to fight on creep, and sucky everywhere else, or balanced off creep, and possessing a enormous home turf advantage. Regardless of which, the zerg will be constantly revolving around maintaining the growth of his slowly expanding creepline, else, the zerg would just be imbalanced as it would be impossible to mount an early game offensive against them. Both infringe on the core aspect of mobility that is zerg play in favor of positional play, traditionally something zerg has never relied heavily on.

    Both are bad.



    And just to nitpick a bit further.

    6. Zerg bases lack the "feel" of Zerg bases: artwork and lore suggests they should look and feel alive, but instead we have 6 buildings at the main surrounded by a feature-less ocean of creep.
    Their are differences in art direction. You chose the artwork that supported your point the most for what you believe the zerg should be. I could just as easily cite artwork that supports the current zerg framework, in greater numbers too.

    See:
    http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__...r_SC1_Art1.jpg

    ----This makes getting an Ultralisk Cavern for its Tumor worthwhile even if you intend to get no Ultralisks -- which in turn makes units like Ultralisks more accessible. "Hey, I've already got a Cavern, why not buy a couple?"
    Thats not what happens. Somethings either useful, or not. Every terrans going to get a fusion core tech lab starport ravens lategame versus zerg. Under your logic, they would "get a few battlecruisers, just for the hell of it.


    Also, some of your effects are just gimmicks tricks Like letting air burrow. That's so redundant. Most of them just don't work. Like your ability to move while burrowed. So let me get this straight, I can move my units within a small patch of creep that I already need to have control over (otherwise they can kill it)? That's fantastic. The Spire one has some solid merit to it. Deviant tumor is ok.

    If your current implementation is done, every player would spam spire upgrades and pool upgrades, and completely laugh at the ten other terrible upgrades that do absolutely nothing worthwhile. Note how most players don't even get burrow.


    The worst part is how you seem to think this will solve "everything", then provide no analytical reasoning why. "We can figure out balance later". Whats later? Two years from now?

    Also, you drastically underestimate the ability of players to not do what you want. You need to provide reasoning backed up from a knowledge of how SC2 is actually played in order to show why any one in the world would ever burrow air units (Hint: THEY WONT), much less waste time investing their time and mental energy into.

    tl;dr

    Cool idea.
    Breaks everything
    Solves nothing
    Doesn't even make the game more fun to play. (Early game zerg will be broken, early game versus zerg will be broken, resulting in a 20 minute macro war of spreading creep. Half your skills are just completely terrible (lol at burrowing air units)



    <3 ^_^
    Last edited by newcomplex; 04-15-2010 at 12:12 AM.

  5. #5

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    Quote Originally Posted by newcomplex View Post
    Specifically, you are implementing a binary system. A zerg is either on creep, or not. Due to the overwhelming effects that such a system implies, zerg will either be balanced to fight on creep, and sucky everywhere else, or balanced off creep, and possessing a enormous home turf advantage. Regardless of which, the zerg will be constantly revolving around maintaining the growth of his slowly expanding creepline, else, the zerg would just be imbalanced as it would be impossible to mount an early game offensive against them. Both infringe on the core aspect of mobility that is zerg play in favor of positional play, traditionally something zerg has never relied heavily on.
    Is Protoss balanced around having a Warp Prism/Proxy Pylon in play? Naturally it's taken into account, but pro gamers have won using it, and they've won without it, and they've lost with it and without it. It is simply another way to play.

    I understand that this would drastically change Zerg play. That's the point. Right now Zerg play feels 1998. The other races have glimpses of 2010. In older threads where I tackled this problem, Nicol brought up an argument that I ultimately found very (if not WHOLLY) compelling: I shouldn't look for the Colossus and the Reaper on the Zerg roster, because they're not about individual unit innovation, they're about innovating on a grand scale.

    So far, Protoss and Terran have had more innovations on a grand scale than the Zerg have. That means a gameplay change is 100% A-OK in my books, if done for the right reasons.

    Their are differences in art direction. You chose the artwork that supported your point the most for what you believe the zerg should be. I could just as easily cite artwork that supports the current zerg framework, in greater numbers too.
    Please note that 1. this is OLD Zerg concept art, and 2. this is concept art of a tiny area. The game already disproves #2. -- in tiny areas, ie main bases, Zerg have plenty of buildings. What I'm looking for is plenty of buildings everywhere, like where there are miles and miles of creep.

    And every SC2 pic I can find seems to support my interpretation.

    Thats not what happens. Somethings either useful, or not. Every terrans going to get a fusion core tech lab starport ravens lategame versus zerg. Under your logic, they would "get a few battlecruisers, just for the hell of it.
    Let's say you're playing Terran and you transitioned from 3 Barracks into heavy Factory play. But you have lots of minerals. Aren't you going to spend them on Marines? Of course you are.

    If a Zerg thinks "I could really use an Ultralisk right now" but doesn't think he has the time to build the Cavern and then the Ultra, he won't. If he already built the Cavern for something else earlier, and now suddenly needs an Ultra, he WILL get it.

    Also, some of your effects are just gimmicky, useless and pointless. Like letting air burrow. That's so redundant.
    Well, this is sort of why I said people should look at the whole instead of the specifics. I mean, we can sit here and come up with a thousand different effects, but there's no point until they can actually be tried out and tested. Theorycrafting will only get us so far. So why nitpick?

    Besides there are actual uses. Imagine your Mutas are harassing the enemy but he pops out a number of Phoenix to hunt them down. It's a long way to your base and the Phoenix is faster... so why not Burrow half-way and render the Phoenix completely useless for the time being?

    <3
    Last edited by pure.Wasted; 04-15-2010 at 12:15 AM.
    http://img687.imageshack.us/img687/7699/commun1.png

  6. #6

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    Is Protoss balanced around having a Warp Prism/Proxy Pylon in play? Naturally it's taken into account, but pro gamers have won using it, and they've won without it, and they've lost with it and without it. It is simply another way to play.

    I understand that this would drastically change Zerg play. That's the point. Right now Zerg play feels 1998. The other races have glimpses of 2010. In older threads where I tackled this problem, Nicol brought up an argument that I ultimately found very (if not WHOLLY) compelling: I shouldn't look for the Colossus and the Reaper on the Zerg roster, because they're not about individual unit innovation, they're about innovating on a grand scale.

    So far, Protoss and Terran have had more innovations on a grand scale than the Zerg have. That means a gameplay change is 100% A-OK in my books, if done for the right reasons.
    Problem
    Zerg is boring
    Solution
    Change things.

    BRILLIANT.

    SOMEONE GIVE THIS MAN A GAME DEVELOPERS AWARD.

    Your solution is not elegant. It is not sensible. It does not work. The protoss being able to teleport units with 1 click is elegant. The zerg getting 9 more buildings in one spell is not. Realize that at the onset of SC2 development, the zerg relied solely on 1 queen to spawn all larvae from a hatchery.

    That solution was far more elegant then anything you've suggested. And it was scrapped because it was too hard to balance. Balancing is 10x harder then "thinking of cool ideas", the one area that developers need the least help on, and probably the most enjoyable.

    This really resembles what a zerg base looks like lol. 2 hatcheroes, some creep, a spawning pool, a spire, a hydra den. Some building in the distance. A bit of lava.

    Look, lets just logically look at this situation.

    The problems are

    a)The zerg need more change.
    b)The queen macro mechanic is stupid.

    Your solution is C

    The Tumor System

    The 101:

    1. Each Creep Tumor can be upgraded individually (for free) into one of a number of Advanced Tumors.
    ----This is hugely macro-intensive and requires constant action across the entire map; but at the same time it's not "required" macro and will net no "automatic" benefit (unlike for instance "free minerals" MULE). It also opens up a lot of new strategies, including blending different Advanced Tumors, or creating a network of a single type.
    2. Advanced Tumors are not Cloaked or Burrowed, which makes them vulnerable to harassment.
    ----This means the Queen will often be forced to recast Creep Tumor, or Overlords used even more. It also means the Zerg Creepscape is now littered with all sorts of funky buildings that make it seem alive and "alien," as Zerg are meant to. It helps make it seem as though the Zerg is actually taking over the map and using it against the other player.
    3. Advanced Tumors (with one exception) generate no Creep.
    ----This means the Queen will often be forced to recast Creep Tumor, or Overlords used even more.
    4. Advanced Tumors provide different benefits to nearby Zerg units, most of them totally passive.
    ----They are not activated abilities, so do not infringe upon Zerg identity. Furthermore, increased similarity between units (in this case, as you'll see) actually helps using them together, creating new synergies.
    5. Creep Tumors are unlocked by morphing different tech structures.
    ----This makes getting an Ultralisk Cavern for its Tumor worthwhile even if you intend to get no Ultralisks -- which in turn makes units like Ultralisks more accessible. "Hey, I've already got a Cavern, why not buy a couple?"

    The Unlocks:

    These are just examples; some may be overpowered, others underpowered. I'm completely open to criticism and willing to change all of them should the need arise. Please don't get bogged down on the specifics. The point here is general illustration.

    Spawning Pool -- Fungal Tumor -- 250 HP -- range double CT's
    Extends Creep to double the range of a Creep Tumor, at the cost of vulnerability.
    ----Basic, common structures grant basic benefits. There's no point in thoroughly rewarding a player for doing something that he can't really avoid.

    Roach Warren -- Cavernous Tumor -- 125 HP -- range 8
    Friendly Burrowed units can move while Burrowed.
    ----Creates synergy between Roach and other units by allowing them to ambush foes similarly. Actually helps Roaches least as with upgrade they don't need CT to burrow move anywhere.

    Baneling Nest -- Vesicular Tumor -- 250 HP -- range 10
    All friendly Zerg units (including air) can Burrow. Air units cannot move while Burrowed even with Cavernous Tumor.
    ----Creates synergy between Baneling and air units by allowing air units to seek refuge from harassing AA near VTs, and by allowing them to morph in relative safety if near Greater Spire's MT.

    Hydralisk Den -- Seismic Tumor -- 125 HP -- range 10
    Friendly Burrowed units are undetectable by Detectors.

    Infestation Pit -- Deviant Tumor -- 350 HP
    Can cast Creep Wall on Creep, range 6, which creates a Force-Field sized wall that has 175 HP and breaks LOS. Creep Wall has a 45 second cooldown.
    ----Essentially a mix between the Overseer's old "Spore Cloud" ability and Force Field. We take advantage of new LOS mechanics (because let's face it, Zerg's melee units could really use it), but with a unique vulnerability and spin.

    Spire -- Brood Tumor -- 350 HP
    Continuously creates Broodlings; timed so that 5 can be alive at once.

    Greater Spire -- Mutable Tumor -- 250 HP -- range 16
    Friendly Burrowed units don't have to Unburrow to morph. (Zerglings, Corruptors)
    ----Helps Zerglings as much as -- if not more than -- Corruptors.

    Ultralisk Cavern -- Pulmonic Tumor -- 125 HP -- range 6
    Friendly Zerg Tumors are coated with Creep, and cannot be differentiated by enemy players without Detection.
    ----Primarily for making Tumors less vulnerable as late-game units become more numerous.
    wut.



    This "Solution" imbalances the game to a point where it would require total rebalancing on all levels, and completely changes the playstyle of the zerg.

    Explain to me the logic in that. How C is the answer to A and B.

    It isn't. At all.
    Its some idealistic mechanic that you thought was really cool.

    Yes, I understand its "cool", but so was the old queen. That was even cooler. What you fail to understand is that Blizzard developers are creative people, every bit as creative as you. Creative input is the last thing they need help on. I'd prefer a morphing queen that made base defense, teleported, and spawned larvae to this, by any stretch. The amount of completely random stuff you've added onto your suggestion is just mind boggling. It goes beyond solving b, and it isn't the most elegant way of solving a. It exists because you thought it was cool, not because it "Solves zerg in 1 fell swooP"
    Last edited by newcomplex; 04-15-2010 at 12:36 AM.

  7. #7

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    Realize that at the onset of SC2 development, the zerg relied solely on 1 queen to spawn all larvae from a hatchery.
    No it didn't...

    The Queen had nothing to do with larvae at first. Then she mutated larvae to make them mobile. Then she spawned mutated larvae. Then she did what she does now, which is just spawn regular old larvae.

    Simple and elegant, but boring.

    Can't say I like your idea all that much, though pW. I think creep itself is perfectly fine. My only problem is, it only synergizes with CERTAIN units. Roaches, Queens and Hydralisks mostly. It doesn't really give speedlings a tangible benefit and of course air units can't use it at all.

    Of course I think it makes the Hydralisk feel 1000x different from the way it was in SC1. Makes positioning your Hydralisks SO much more important.

    I disagree with your assessment of the Zerg, though. I think there's plenty of synergy between Hydralisks and Roaches, Hydralisks and Zerglings, Hydralisks and Infestors, Hydralisks and Brood Lords. Hydralisks and Overlords...

    ...just make a lot of Hydralisks, okay?

    As for new mechanics... there's the Queen, there's Transfusion, there's creep (and by proxy Queens and Overlords), there's the Nydus Network, there's mobile defenses... I think that's enough mechanically speaking. My issue is more spawn larvae and the total lack of spellcasters.

    I think the main target here is spawn larvae. If spawn larvae were cool and interesting, the Zerg would seem more cool and interesting. That's my opinion anyway.

    So er... tldr: don't like the idea. Creep Tumors are cool enough already.
    Last edited by Aldrius; 04-15-2010 at 01:13 AM.


    The Mother of all Queens!

    Thanks to Dynamik- for the signature!

  8. #8

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    You know, NC, you could have saved us all a lot of time if you'd just said "I disagree with the fact that Blizz should rebalance the entire game just because you don't like something." To which I'd have said "They're gonna rebalance the entire game come Heart of the Swarm anyway, if Brood War and TFT (let alone common sense) are any indication, and I already said this was for the future, so agree/disagree that doesn't really mean anything."

    And then our kerkuffle would have been over before it had begun.
    http://img687.imageshack.us/img687/7699/commun1.png

  9. #9

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    Ignoring the fact that the idea would basically be taking a sledgehammer to game balance, unit composition, and pretty much everything we know of StarCraft II at this point, this idea has a lot of things going against it.

    1: It's overcomplicated. Creep speed is a very simple mechanic: Zerg units get to move faster on creep, period. Creep Tumors are a simple mechanic: a tumor gets to replicate itself once. Warp-In is a very simple mechanic: Gateway units now get to be build anywhere within Pylon power. And so forth.

    This? This is nothing like those; it is overcomplicated.

    Mechanics in game design tend to work best when they're as simple as possible. It is the interactions between simple mechanics that make for strong gameplay.

    2: It is... needlessly difficult to balance. Are players going to be able to even fight the Zerg when they're on Creep, and if they can't, will the Zerg be too weak off of the Creep? Are you going to be able to come up with 9 separate powers for these advanced tumors that are all unique, interesting, worthwhile, and commonly used, or will it just be 2-3 that get used and the rest ignored?

    The nice thing about the creep bonus currently is that it's easy to run up with some fast Overlords, dump a patch of creep down, and get the speed bonus for a battle. But if you have to spend a lot of time and effort to get these bonuses, they must be significant. The speed boost can be significant, particularly when storm-dodging with Hydralisks, but if I'm supposed to bring along a Queen and spend lots of time waiting for tumors to hatch, it had better give a real benefit.

    Therefore, we must assume that the creep bonuses are providing an army in their range with actual power and effectiveness. So, given armies of equal cost, are they able to attack my forces while they're on the creep? If not, then are my forces totally ineffective off the creep? It's going to take a lot of convincing, including specific examples, to show that one or the other will not happen.

    And if its the latter, doesn't that provide the enemy with a simple way of destroying the Zerg? Just take out a couple of buildings and their entire army melts. Balancing the game so that this doesn't happen is way more trouble than its worth.

    3: It doesn't really solve the problem, because ultimately you can always build more Queens. If you're trying to stop me from Spawning Larva every X seconds, this fails.

    4: It slows the Zerg way down. Just from the sheer APM it takes to move the Creep along. But now with the Zerg having critical advantages based on being on the Creep, it pretty much turns the Zerg into the SC1 Terrans doing a hard-push with Missile Turrets and Siege Tanks: move forward, stop, build stuff, own territory, repeat.

    The general speedy feel of the Zerg race would be pretty much destroyed, because the Zerg wouldn't be worthwhile off of the creep. Nobody wants the Zerg to be like the SC1 Terrans.

    To which I'd have said "They're gonna rebalance the entire game come Heart of the Swarm anyway, if Brood War and TFT (let alone common sense) are any indication
    I'm sorry, what rebalancing of the entire game was done in BW? It added 7 units and a couple of abilities. It did not change the basic stats of most of the game's units, which what you're proposing required.

    And again, doing what was done in TFT was not a good thing. When you have to take a sledgehammer to a game that's already out there and being played just to balance it, you did something very wrong in the design.

    Nothing in SC2 currently warrants that level of change.
    "When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." - C. S. Lewis

    "You simply cannot design a mechanic today to mimic the behaviour of a 10-year old mechanic that you removed because nearly nobody would like them today." - Norfindel, on the Macro Mechanics

    "We want to focus the player on making interesting choices and not just a bunch of different klicks." - Dustin Browder

    StarCraft 2 Beta Blog

  10. #10

    Default Re: pW Solves Zerg in 1 Fell Swoop

    Quote Originally Posted by Nicol Bolas View Post
    1: It's overcomplicated. Creep speed is a very simple mechanic: Zerg units get to move faster on creep, period. Creep Tumors are a simple mechanic: a tumor gets to replicate itself once. Warp-In is a very simple mechanic: Gateway units now get to be build anywhere within Pylon power. And so forth.
    Sure, you can boil Creep down to a simple, straight-forward, and elegant mechanic. Fundamentally, it is: "You can get Creep, and Creep makes your units faster." Except it's not that simple at all, is it?

    How do you get Creep? Well you can get it through a Queen casting Creep Tumor, you can get it through a Creep Tumor replicating itself, you can get it through an Overlord generating Creep, you can get it through creating a Hatchery, and you can get it through spawning a Nydus Worm. Nothing elegant about these arbitrary methods.

    Creep makes units faster. But does it make all Zerg units faster? No, Drones' movement speed is unchanged. But of those Zerg ground units that are not Drones, are all units' speeds changed by the same amount? No, Queens and Spine/Spore Crawlers' movement speed is increased a lot more than the standard 30%. Are these arbitrary differences elegant?

    Creep also happens to be necessary for building placement. For all buildings? No, not for Hatcheries, Extractors, or Nydus Worms. Hatcheries make some sense (you need to start with something), but Extractors? Nydus Worms?

    But why didn't you include any of these overcomplicated details in your summary? Because it was only a summary, and that's what a summary is; the fundamental, simple gist of a thing. Yet you did not do me the courtesy of comparing a summary vs. a summary.

    "You can create Creep, and Creep makes units faster." -- does not explain how Creep is created, which units benefit from +speed and how much, and what Creep's other uses are.
    "You can morph Advanced Tumors, and Advanced Tumors give your units passive abilities." -- does not explain AT's pre-req or the benefits they provide.

    I don't see the problem.

    So, given armies of equal cost, are they able to attack my forces while they're on the creep? If not, then are my forces totally ineffective off the creep? It's going to take a lot of convincing, including specific examples, to show that one or the other will not happen.

    And if its the latter, doesn't that provide the enemy with a simple way of destroying the Zerg? Just take out a couple of buildings and their entire army melts. Balancing the game so that this doesn't happen is way more trouble than its worth.
    Once again, Protoss are designed with Warp-In in mind, but this does NOT mean that Protoss pro gamers who don't use Warp-In automatically lose. Many have won handily.

    There's no inherent reason why Advanced Tumors cannot work the same way. They provide benefits, yes. Valuable benefits that can be taken advantage of. But everything is tweakable. Everything is balance-able.

    3: It doesn't really solve the problem, because ultimately you can always build more Queens. If you're trying to stop me from Spawning Larva every X seconds, this fails.
    I addressed this in my OP:

    "-Upgrading Advanced Tumors is a macro-intensive skill that involves tons of decision-making. If SL is still too valuable to switch between one and the other (prompting players to simply get more Queens), with this boost of macro maybe SL could be removed completely, and extra Larva at Hatcheries could simply become the norm."

    Bam, problem solved. Instead of 3+4 Larva, Zerg can now spawn 5 naturally; it is an over-all nerf (unit stats can always be changed) but Advanced Tumors are an over-all buff so I don't see why the two cannot even out.

    It slows the Zerg way down. Just from the sheer APM it takes to move the Creep along. But now with the Zerg having critical advantages based on being on the Creep, it pretty much turns the Zerg into the SC1 Terrans doing a hard-push with Missile Turrets and Siege Tanks: move forward, stop, build stuff, own territory, repeat.
    Let's put this in context. As things stand, Zerg get to be mobile (though Terran and Protoss have both done a LOT of catching up in the last 12 years, so their mobility isn't as big of an advantage as it used to be), but at the cost of having unique racial mechanics that further differentiate their play. If* slowing them down is what it takes to make the race really stand out and play in a fundamentally different way from the other two, why shouldn't we do it? As you yourself said, they ARE still faster than the other two; slowing them down would only equal out the playing field.

    *I don't believe that slowing down would be necessary. More on this in a sec.

    The general speedy feel of the Zerg race would be pretty much destroyed, because the Zerg wouldn't be worthwhile off of the creep. Nobody wants the Zerg to be like the SC1 Terrans.
    Why are the Zerg being nerfed so that they're not worthwhile off of the Creep? Whoever suggested that? Zealots weren't nerfed just because you can summon them anywhere you like on the map. Same goes for High Templar. Dark Templars stats weren't touched; and while they WERE placed higher up on the tech tree, this definitely has more to do with the fact that Detection is so much more difficult in SC2 than it was in the past, than it does with Warp-In. I'm absolutely positive some changes would be necessary, but it sounds like you think we're gonna cut every unit's HP in half, and I just can't see that being necessary at all.

    Remember: this comes at the cost of SL. That means Zerg units are just as powerful, they simply can't mass them in QUITE as high a number as quickly. It's a trade-off.

    I'm sorry, what rebalancing of the entire game was done in BW? It added 7 units and a couple of abilities. It did not change the basic stats of most of the game's units, which what you're proposing required.
    Adding a Medic changed the way Terran played completely. Just from looking up BW patch logs, you can tell that Adrenal Glands was added as a direct counter to what Medics allowed Marines to do in TvZ. Imagine adding Medics now. Marines, Marauders, Reapers, and Medivacs would all require stat tweaks at the very least; let alone all the counter-tweaks, for Lings and Roaches and Mutas and so on. If a single unit can make that big a difference, and we'll be getting new units in both Heart and Void, do you really think Blizz is gonna get away without rebalancing? No, they're not.

    And again, doing what was done in TFT was not a good thing. When you have to take a sledgehammer to a game that's already out there and being played just to balance it, you did something very wrong in the design.

    Nothing in SC2 currently warrants that level of change.
    WC3's balance problems were not detected in Beta. They manifested once the game was released. We have absolutely no way of knowing what will or won't require huge nerfs or buffs across the board.

    Not only that, but WC3 added HUGE game mechanics. Player-owned shops, Neutral Heroes, 3 new units and 1 new hero per race... none of THAT had to do with game breaking imbalances. They just said "this game doesn't have enough content," and acted on it. I'm saying that now. This game doesn't have enough content. They're going to have to act on it, one way or the other.

    You can say they shouldn't, that given the way the game is shaping up they need to keep it as it is and make only minor changes to multiplayer, but they won't. I'm willing to stake my reputation on it.
    Last edited by pure.Wasted; 04-15-2010 at 02:50 AM.
    http://img687.imageshack.us/img687/7699/commun1.png

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •