Alpha Test Game 4

Discussion in 'Wing Commander TacOps' started by Avacar, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. Ironduke

    Ironduke Spaceman

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    Wow, turn 22 CP: Things actually worked out exactly as I had anticipated. I think that's a first... :D

    When Bravo 1 was firing at Wandering Soul, my Orders window would give me a blank target for my Particle Cannons - as it should, since both of capi's Epees were out of range. But when I clicked on the Laser Cannons, the target field still stayed blank. It worked as soon as I clicked on the Laser Cannons first. Just FYI...
     
  2. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    Quoth my squadron's motto: quod sugi. Misread the gun ranges; I'd thought I was out of range of Bravo1's guns. Hell.

    Turn 23CP: And that went exactly as I thought it would. I knew I should've tried the hard brake again...

    Lord, please let tailing work this turn...
     
  3. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    Wow... you're really going to know what Bravo 1 is doing.

    I suspect you will get 2 identical tailing reports, and 1 limited tailing report.
     
  4. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    Turn24 MP:

    Field report says" Zeta 1 has successfully tailed Bravo 1 (rolled: 10). Dark Archon can tell where Bravo 1 will fly next (rolled: 8)."

    Tailing report I've got says "Bravo 1 looks like they're turning around.Bravo 1 looks like they are going to go straight and turn 180°"

    Rules on page 11 say that on a result of 7-9, "enemy tailed, has to reveal speed and direction of his next move", and on 10+ "enemy tailed, has to reveal exact maneuver". So, shouldn't there be something in there that mentions his speed?

    Making sure that's what I'm supposed to be seeing here (especially given that Bravo 1 pulled a 180 during the previous turn).
     
  5. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    First: YAY! It looks like it all worked.

    Second: I just took over Zeta 1 briefly, and it gave me a different tailing report form you, which is what it should give. There are 3 levels of tailing, 3, 2, 1 (and 0 means not tailing). Zeta 1 had a level 3 tail rating. It should have given you the true result, which *cough* didn't need a speed listing. What you've posted here was the level 1 and level 2 ratings. As far as I can tell, for the level 1 and level 2 ratings, those messages would be correct (given the action taken). The real issue is why you aren't seeing the level 3 rated message. When I took over Zeta 1, I did see it. Can you check again?
     
  6. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    Checking again...nope, same messages. Will try again in a different browser when I get an opportunity; once again, I'm at work using Crapfox 3 at the moment.

    Of course, it could be that I misread the field report, too. Zeta1 is Ironduke's fighter; he's the one with the ten roll result. D'OH!!

    I should still be seeing a speed for Bravo1, though, based on the rules.

    Actually...let's take another look at that Level 2 statement: "Bravo 1 looks like they are going to go straight and turn 180°."

    So, which is it, is Bravo1 going straight, or is he turning 180 degrees? The Level 2 statement is giving me two different valid directions (as defined on page 11, the directions being "straight, 180, port or starboard").

    In this case from the context of the Level 1 statement for Wandering Soul, I know that Bravo1 is turning 180 degrees. If I didn't have that statement, if all I had to go on was the Level 2 statement...

    EDIT: Looks like a new post came in while I was editing/making a nuisance of myself.
     
  7. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    Well...ironduke... you know what you ordered. I don't want to reveal it for now (we can talk about this openly during the CP). That said, you wrote the rules, should he get a speed value out of this? He's currently getting direction and 'straight ahead'... I could output the speed... but how would you want that interpreted? Ship's current speed? Ship's expected speed? Net square change?
     
  8. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    Page 11: "Note that the speed a player has to reveal to a Tailing player means the set speed of his fighter, not the actual speed after its movement. (So, if you set speed to 4 and turn two hexes to the right, you would tell the player tailing your ship "starboard 4," when in reality you would move just three hexes.) When performing a U-turn, you effectively reveal your exact maneuver to your enemy if he tails you with a 7 or better."
     
  9. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    I'm really trying not to give things away here... but if I told you the speed, it would narrow it down to about two very specific actions, and I don't think a level 2 tail success merits basically a free level 3 tail. Again, once either ironduke chimes in, or we get to the CP phase, we can better discuss what should be put in that particular message.
     
  10. Ironduke

    Ironduke Spaceman

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    Zeta 1 got the exact maneuver revealed as it should be. Now back to the tailing discussion: As capi already pointed out, a level 2 tail will reveal the set speed of any given maneuver. Some examples for this:

    Maneuver: Target banks starboard at speed 3.
    Tailing info: Starboard, speed 3.

    Maneuver: Target performs a Shelton slide, turning 1 to port and another 2 to port at the end of its movement.
    Tailing info: Port, speed 13 (or whatever the afterburner speed is).

    Maneuver: Target performs a Hard Brake.
    Tailing info: Straight, speed 0.

    Maneuver: Target pulls a 180 at speed 4
    Tailing info: 180°, speed 4. (Effectively equaling a level 3 tail...)

    Now, since we're still in beta phase for WCTO, stuff like this helps me to reconsider some of the rules. They're not set in stone, after all... ;)
    I'd suggest that, for a future version of the rules, level 2 tailing should maybe not reveal the exact set speed, but whether the target is accelerating, decelerating or using afterburners. This would help setting it a bit further apart from level 3 tailing.

    In this case, a tailing report of "180°, speed 5" (was it 5? I honestly can't remember :confused:) would have been correct for level 2 tailing.
     
  11. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    Keep in mind they only know what the people think they'll be doing. Let's look at a burnout example. That would show up as speed ? with 180 degree turn. Should ? be the full afterburner speed or the burnout distance on a level 2 tail? Now let's say they actually end up failing the burnout... suddenly whichever I give, the 180deg turn was a lie even though it is what they were planning to do.

    Technically speaking, if I coded this exactly to the rules, Capi's level 2 tailing message would read "Speed 0, 180deg turn". Of course, the supposed maneuver may fail coughwhateveritiscough and you may actually have a speed. Again, what would we want reported in this case?
     
  12. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    My two cents here, it should be the set speed of the fighter...so either the speed that the player set it to that turn, or the speed the fighter was moving at before that player initiated a maneuver. For example, I was traveling at speed 2, you tailed me. I light my burners...it should still report speed 2. Report set speed, not effective speed; that's the main difference between Level 2 and Level 3, and IMHO it's not in need of a rules tweak. Only makes a difference if the tailed fighter does something sneaky.

    In the interest of moving the game along, I'll go with Ironduke's statement (speed 5), and make my next move accordingly. I'm pretty sure you pulled a successful Immelman, but I wouldn't have known that otherwise...
     
  13. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    Just to point it out, you already have the pre-order set speed; mouse over the ship! It lists the "current" speed right there. In the case of a non-special maneuver, the tailing info already is clear enough and would give the new-valued speed of the ship. Only the case of oddball maneuvers that have a chance do I view this as an issue (immelman, burnout, shelton slide, etc.) Even for pure afterburner, you'd already get everything you need since there is no chance involved. (again all of this in reference to a level 2 tail success; you already get maneuver-named level of detail for level 3)
     
  14. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    Turn 24 CP: Well, that's what I get for succumbing to the urge to cheat...acted on the "Speed 0, 180" info instead of the "Speed 5, 180" info. Hoping for a low throw on Zeta1's tailing check on Archon; meantime, I have to hope the laws of probability act in my favor for once.

    So, wait a minute, I'm confused...is the speed information updated for a move phase the instant someone inputs orders for their ship? I had assumed that the old speed information would be displayed up until the Combat Phase, so that people wouldn't be able to act on that information.
     
  15. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    No, it isn't updated until combat phase... but you just asked for 'the speed the ship was going before it initiated the maneuver'. You already have that, and including it in the tailing info seems pointless.
     
  16. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    So, open discussion now (in case anyone wasn't following my strong hints): Immelman. How should its level 2 tail report read? As far as I'm concerned, saying 'Speed 0 turn 180' tells them it is an immelman attempt, and even a failed immelman attempt is easy to line up with and predict once you know that's what they're trying... so it turns the level 2 practically into a full level 3 tail report. I feel that telling them it is a straight-ahead and then turn around makes more sense for a level 2, as only a perfect tailing attempt would be able to see them pulling up and doing then immelman while you're right on their tail and they try to turn around you.

    The other issue is that right now, I've coded in the messages more or less uniquely for each maneuver.. with enough time, you guys would likely be able to pick up the phrasing for level 1,2 and 3, and figure out what they're trying anyway. Perhaps I should start a new thread so that we can debate what the correct phrasing is for each level of tailing for all possible moves to keep it as white-washed as possible in all but level 3 tailing success.

    Thoughts?
     
  17. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    It's a topic that deserves its own thread.

    My thoughts on the Immelman...well, I don't know if I've made them 100% clear or not. I like to go with what the rules say. Page 15:

    [QUOTE author=TacOps Rules, Page 15]
    "The Immelman is as old as it is effective, but it is still difficult to perform. It can give experienced pilots a great advantage over their adversaries, though. Increase the maneuver’s Target Roll by 3 for each Turn Rate below 3 (9+ for Turn Rate 2, 12+ for Turn Rate 1).
    Requires: Target Roll 6+
    Success: Ship turns 180° on the spot. No other movement whatsoever will occur, and it will retain its current speed.
    Failure: Ship executes a normal turn to port (even result) or starboard (odd result) at its full Turn Rate."
    [/QUOTE]

    So, let's say a ship (we'll call it AboutToDie) was moving at Speed 5, had been tailed by another fighter last turn (which we'll call AboutToOvershoot) and pulled an Immelman. On a Level 3 tailing result, the text should be "AboutToDie has performed an Immelman turn". On Level 2, because he retains his speed, the message should read "AboutToDie moves at speed 5 and turns 180 degrees". And on Level 1, the message is "AboutToDie looks like he's turning around".

    There is a heckuva difference there between the Level 3 and Level 2 messages. If AboutToOvershoot gets that Level 2 result and acts on the Speed 5 information, he'll try to position himself based on that information, and overshoot by three hexes (probably denying him the clean shot he was so sure he was about to get) when AboutToDie successfully pulls the Immelman. And of course, this exact same scenario is what happened between Bravo1 and Dark Archon in 24MP of Game 4.
     
  18. capi3101

    capi3101 Rear Admiral

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    Turn 25CP:

    Okay, okay, okay....I'm now totally confused when it comes to Tailing.

    Archon got a perfect tailing result (Level 3) on Bravo1 at the start of 25MP. Of course, Archon had evaded, but I still got the tailing report and could use that information for moving Wandering Soul. The Tailing Report was "Bravo 1 will move forward with speed 5 and turns starboard 2". The field report says "Bravo 1 has moved forward with speed 2 and turns starboard 2. ", and the field report is what happened. Of course, I moved Soul based on the speed 5 information...makes me doubly glad I was thinking Ironduke was setting up a trap for Soul and moved him instead of turning him in place like I'd originally thought about doing. Still, why didn't I get the correct tailing data?
     
  19. Avacar

    Avacar Vice Admiral

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    That one does sound more like a bug. I'll have to look into it.... Yeah, looks like for regular movement I forgot to factor in the actual movement change. Updated. I've also normalized the messages to start sounding the same (so you can't memorize and tell them apart if they are manoeuvres). Additionally, I updated immelman as per your suggestion, Capi.

    Note that the tailing widget does the message generation on-the-fly, meaning all successful past and future tailing messages are immediately updated to reflect the new wording and interpretation. Please verify the last few turns' worth of successful tailing to let me know.

    I also noticed that my utility function 'turn_to_string(direction number)' always reads "turns port/starboard #'. Some of the tailing messages are things like "Name will turn_to_string(3)" which will produce "Bravo1 will turns stardboard 3" instead of a more grammatically correct "Bravo 1 will turn starboard 3". In that regard, I'll need to update and enhance that helper function to have at least two tenses/phrasings, and then go back through all the code and have the correct version called (or the right flag passed in) based on what makes grammatical sense for the statement. This is here to say I've noted the issue, but I'm not fixing it today.
     
  20. Ironduke

    Ironduke Spaceman

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    That's actually very interesting... If you take evasive action, you shouldn't be able to "stay on target." Or to put it differently, if you got your hands full evading a missile, you should definitely lose your tailing result.
     

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