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Forum » WARSHIFT GENERAL FORUM » SUGGESTIONS, CONTESTS, POLLS » Coop command hierarchy: coordinating player groups
Coop command hierarchy: coordinating player groups
NoamLoopDate: Sunday, 22.12.2013, 18:11 | Message # 1
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It could be very interesting to have "strategic fleet commanders" for coop multiplayer who are able to command both NPC groups directly as well as giving commands to other players who control a subdivision of the army and/or a group of buildings - a subdivision with a "brain" so to say.
The commander could give commands to these groups as if they were AI controlled NPCs. But these commands are not automatically executed by the AI but sent to the player who took responsibility for this group as visual hints. This player will then see the intent of the commander and can execute it - but more intelligently than the AI could. ("Build air units" could lead to an informed, mixed creation of an air fleet that meets the current needs. "Attack enemy at position x/y/z" would try to use the units in the currently necessary tactical context needed to engage this particular enemy group. Etc.)

This could work transparently: Like directly controlling an individual NPC in first person perspective (and still receiving commands from the commander) people can declare responsibility for subgroups. So players can directly control the individual NPCs and groups where it's strategically most helpful atm. - and if they jump out again the controls are not sent to them but directly to the NPC AI again. For the "master commander" the command interface for controlling AI NPCs or a player controlled group would be exactly the same - so if the player leaves the group/NPC the AI can smoothly take over again, following the "master plan". (The commander could even give suggestions which NPC/NPC group to take over to individual players via game commands. The decision to do it would be up to the player though).
The role of the "fleet commander" could be handed over on the fly between players (so e.g. the best player could be fleet commander usually but also jump into a very important sub group or individual NPC if necessary - temporarily handing over fleet command to another player)

Edit: Perhaps we don't even need one single "fleet commander token". Each building and unit produced has both a "command-" and a "control token". Initially these belong to the player who got the building/unit in the first place - or built it. If another player wants to take over armies of other player(s) he can request command or control over them - or alternatively the owner can offer the tokens to another player. Depending on the owner tokens a batch request (for all requested units) is presented to the token owner who can agree or decline. If you hand over the command token these units will be commanded by the other player from now on. If you hand over the control token, the other player controls these units then.
So arbitrary combinations become possible. Example:
Four players Amy,Bert,Charly and Dora are playing cooperatively. (E.g. as predefined match-up against AI or other players or as temporary alliance in a free-for-all match - or whatever game modes there will be in Universum smile ).
Each player has one worker and owns both the command and control tokens for it. The players start to build buildings and units with that worker. The tokens for these units automatically belong to the builder.
Now Amy, Bert and Charly hand over all control and command tokens to Dora. She is now controlling and commanding the entire fleet. Then Dora organizes the units and buildings into four meaningful "task forces" and offers control tokens for three of these subgroups to Amy, Bert and Charly - who accept. Now Dora is still in command of the entire fleet but only directly controlling a section of the units. Her other commands go to the other three players who control subgroups.
At some point Amy has to leave to go afk - handing back the control token of her group to Dora who controls a bigger part of the fleet again (if she would just drop out the control would automatically go to the owner of the command token)
Then things get really busy - Dora can't hold overview of the entire fleet anymore. So she hands over the command tokens for Charly's and Bert's groups to Bert who will not see Dora's commands anymore now: Two independent groups are formed again.

This could be extended one step further:
Let's assume we have a commander C (who initially holds both the command and control token for a group) and who hands over the control token for a subsection of this group to a player A.
It would be thinkable that player A could then give out a "subordinate control token" to another player B. Player A would receive a "subordinate command token" for this subgroup from that action. So player A would still see commands for the entire group from C and B would see commands from A - for the units he got control assigned for. This can be recursively be repeated as desired.
Whether this makes sense most likely depends on the maximal number of players and overall unit cap (if there is any).


Message edited by NoamLoop - Sunday, 22.12.2013, 19:31
 
hralDate: Wednesday, 01.01.2014, 20:36 | Message # 2
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I like the general idea. 
It would be nice to see some innovation in 3C - Command, Control, Communication... RTS' have followed the old recipe for a long long time now, and it could use some new thinking, which is one of the reasons I support this game.

If we get "cockpit view" it would be awesome to have orders, minimap and incoming messages displayed on screens in the cockpit, if you are in 1'st person view. Infantry should have the most basic communications, a normal FPS Heads Up Display, and vehicles could have more detailed views of the battlefield. 

Team Commander could designate zones or Area of Operations to Team players, maybe assign more players to one area, but with a different set of orders, an order could also be to support another player.

If at some point, expansions are released which grants access to "subfactions" I think players should only be able to share generic faction units. Example : Amy plays as standard Terran Army General, the vanilla faction, Dora plays as Terran Naval Admiral, and get access to special ships and upgrades. Dora can still give Amy control of her marines and light vehicles (Terran Navy doesn't have heavy vehicles) but she can't give control of special Navy ships and flyers to Amy, as they are Naval specific.

This is perhaps turning into a rather general suggestions thread, but I'm a bit hangover from yesterday, so please excuse my possible digressings.

On of the things I love is when games manage to put some kind of continuity in the "longterm gameplay".
Like when you play a skirmish game either against AI or humans, the next game is gonna start the exact same way, and those 2 games will in no way affect each other.
Single player campaigns are a way to add a sense of continuity, you play out the story. Though in most games the outcome of different games are binay; either victory or defeat.
Starcraft II added a new sense of continuity through the earnings of credits and research points, in that way there are suddenly more parameters to map than Victory/Defeat.
How to implement this in Universum War Front i don't quite know, and it depends on many factors.

Personally I like to hang out with some friends, and because we skillwise are often mismatched we play coop, and try to make it a team effort. 
However it gets a bit boring, playing map after map, and no continuity at all.
I'm not saying I want the big superdynamic coop campaign with 30+ missions, for a dynmaic number of players between 1 to 5.
But a conquest game mode like in the first Dawn of War (last expansion) where you conquer territories, and get bonuses and stuff when you get a certain territory, basicly a turnbased strategy game controlling which maps to load, and with what parameters.
Dawn of war also added some continuity with the option of honor guards, units which escort your hero to the next map. The option to place defensive units in controlled territories and lastly your hero/commander earning xp and thus getting access to more wargear/better stats/abilities.
 
Lemon99Date: Saturday, 30.04.2016, 21:40 | Message # 3
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I moved this message to a different place - but I can't delete this messange here... Sorry. sad

Message edited by Lemon99 - Saturday, 30.04.2016, 21:49
 
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