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Moony
06-28-2010, 04:38 AM
Not sure what I'm going to call it yet, but I'm envisioning a huge RTS, with the focus on large-scale battles and complex fighting AI for the units.

Ever since I saw the RTS that one of the developers made, I've wanted to make something on a larger scale than that. I do want to make it have a story, and have specific RTS story mode battles, as well as a vs. mode with 2-4 player/NPC battles.

It'd be a huge undertaking, but I'm confident I'll figure it out. :)

Vertrucio
06-28-2010, 04:56 AM
Might have to be cautious about your expectations of how LBP2 will handle RTS games though, the logic tools in LBP 2 are nice, but they're a far cry from AI programming.

Likewise, RTS games haven't worked well on consoles at all, let alone large scale games.

If you want large amounts of units, you'll want to keep your units as simple as possible, just simple blocks with stickers on top, and maybe a turret that's just a decorator on a rotating flat.

The same goes for AI, just use a simple AI as you can make.

Moony
06-28-2010, 05:02 AM
Little blocks with stickers was pretty much what I was thinking of, actually. Probably something like a "Pixel Wars". Lotsa holographic stuff.

Vertrucio
06-28-2010, 07:21 AM
Perhaps instead of RTS style controls, you could have it similar to the old Herzog Zwei game? In HZ, you piloted a transforming walker/jet similar to Robotech/Macross/Transformers.

You would then fly around the map capturing bases that also manufactured units that you chose. You could then give these units general orders and transport them using the jet mode, or fight alongside them in the walker mode.

It was one of the first RTS games on consoles, made better by the addition of directly controlling something on the battlefield.

rtm223
06-28-2010, 09:53 AM
the logic tools in LBP 2 are nice, but they're a far cry from AI programming.

Actually, they are very well suited to a number of AI paradigms. Of course, deliberative systems (ones that plan ahead and strategise) are going to be relatively complex and time-intensive, but realistically you don't actually need to use much deliberation to pull off a reasonable impression of forward thinking and this can be centralised into a single master node that could still be relatively simple and incorporate a certain amount of randomisation to vary the experience. The individual units need a certain amount of autonomy, but this can be achieved with a simple reactive system, for which the new logic is perfectly suited. You can also enhance the behaviour of the units using simple swarm-based AI techniques, which would also help a certain extent to reduce the complexity of the master node.

You can create very robust AI systems with highly complex emergent behaviours without much cost in terms of logic complexity.


On the other hand... I don't see "epic" being the scale of an RTS in LBP tbh ;)

djpokeboy
06-28-2010, 04:02 PM
Watch out though in the video i saw the level was introducing the air bee ship and he told it to move somewhere and it flew right past then went off the screen lol...

Fishrock123
06-28-2010, 04:43 PM
On the other hand... I don't see "epic" being the scale of an RTS in LBP tbh ;)

I do. I've always though rts games were limited unit-wise. Lbp has the chance for rts games that are simpleyish, but have high variation and creativity among units and structures.

rtm223
06-28-2010, 04:54 PM
Epic (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/epic) - extending beyond the usual or ordinary especially in size or scope.

Are we using the same definition of epic here? ;) I was talking about the size of the games. Although I do agree that the creative possibilities are great and certainly wouldn't want to put anyone off attempting an RTS.

Moony
06-28-2010, 08:15 PM
I do. I've always though rts games were limited unit-wise. Lbp has the chance for rts games that are simpleyish, but have high variation and creativity among units and structures.

Yeah, that's mostly because it was unfinished and the AI was still glitchy.


Epic (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/epic) - extending beyond the usual or ordinary especially in size or scope.

Are we using the same definition of epic here? ;) I was talking about the size of the games. Although I do agree that the creative possibilities are great and certainly wouldn't want to put anyone off attempting an RTS.

I was using epic as "extending beyond the usual scope". I believe that if you have 100 little units beating each other up all at once, that'd be considered epic?

Asbestos101
06-30-2010, 01:36 AM
Lest we not forget, that so far there has only been one case of an RTS style game created in LBP2 and it was made by a developer that has been working for the toolset for a few years now, and knows the game inside out.

It'll be hard for any one of us regular joes to start out big like this as soon as the game comes out.

Rogar
06-30-2010, 10:15 AM
Oooh, I remember Herzog (1, or should I say Eins) on the MSX! That was a lot of fun, playing against my brother. :)

I already contemplated doing Feedback, a faux-3D shooter. I should boot up the old thing and see what else I can rip o... err... use for inspiration.

Fishrock123
06-30-2010, 04:34 PM
Lest we not forget, that so far there has only been one case of an RTS style game created in LBP2 and it was made by a developer that has been working for the toolset for a few years now, and knows the game inside out.

It'll be hard for any one of us regular joes to start out big like this as soon as the game comes out.

Do you want to bet on that?

Listen.

The DCS controls an arrow (cursor) which has an X and Y axis mover moving it via the left control stick,

The arrow also contains a gyro set to max stiffness and a few emitters and key switch.

When you want to select a unit you press the O button and it briefly emits a small key in that spot which activates a toggle on the unit you want to select. The toggle then turns on the microchip that makes the unit (which has zero gravity, but has fast deceleration) look for the mag key that your about to place using the X button.

To place the mag key where you want your units to go, you move the arrow to the spot and press the X button, this emits the mag key and the unit will use it's logic to get as close as possible to that spot. ( you could only have one movement going at one time using this exact system)

Also, when you move your arrow over a building to make new units, the mag key on the building will trigger a switch on the arrow so it emits the HUD options for what you want to build, the options could be directly wired to the DCS or triggered via mag key, pref 2nd option.

Since units have zero gravity and do not resist movement, they should not get stuck easily. (they have fast deceleration, so that if they get bumped, they don't fly off the screen.)

Building buildings would be similar to units, with a few minor differences.

Drag-area-select is the only thing I'm not sure how exactly you'd do. I'm thinking you might have arrow-over the units instead of dragging the box, but this could interfere with the reset on the normal selection, maybe it would use the []. Button?



So, did brain explode and yours eyeballs melt out? No? Then I think this can be done with out too much difficulty.

Prince Pixelton
06-30-2010, 08:51 PM
*Brain is still sizzling* Ow......
Nah, just kiddin', I only scanned over the post and looked over small bits of it. Seems....somewhat easy to make.

Asbestos101
06-30-2010, 09:01 PM
So, did brain explode and yours eyeballs melt out? No? Then I think this can be done with out too much difficulty.

No it didn't, but thats mainly because you didn't really explain anything.

I mean you did, but you glazed over the technical features.

It's like saying, i'm going to build a nuclear power plant, here are the steps i'm going to take;

1: Find a nice flat area, away from residential surroundings. I'll need the governments permission to set it up but I already have that, so no worries.
2: Build a fence around the area to keep people away from the reactor whilst i'm working on it.
2: Surface the area in concrete, with big iron struts as supports. They'll need to be quite resilient if this structure is to last.
3: Build the nuclear power plant.

Just saying "Then i'll use the logic to" doesn't explain how you'd use it, or if you understand what goes into it.

But in all fairness neither of us have had a look at the logic stuff properly so we can't go into more detail yet.

Fishrock123
06-30-2010, 09:14 PM
No it didn't, but thats mainly because you didn't really explain anything.

I mean you did, but you glazed over the technical features.

It's like saying, i'm going to build a nuclear power plant, here are the steps i'm going to take;

1: Find a nice flat area, away from residential surroundings. I'll need the governments permission to set it up but I already have that, so no worries.
2: Build a fence around the area to keep people away from the reactor whilst i'm working on it.
2: Surface the area in concrete, with big iron struts as supports. They'll need to be quite resilient if this structure is to last.
3: Build the nuclear power plant.

Just saying "Then i'll use the logic to" doesn't explain how you'd use it, or if you understand what goes into it.

But in all fairness neither of us have had a look at the logic stuff properly so we can't go into more detail yet.


What do I need to explain? You can set mag key switches to follow mag keys. That's all you need to move units. Just have them follow something you emit from your arrow, right?

I could probably build an rts in lbp right now, but it would be... Well, wacky because there isn't movers or zero gravity, or dcs.

Rogar
07-01-2010, 11:21 AM
Unless you want units to move around obstacles, then you have to implement a path finding algorithm, which is a bit trickier. :p

Fishrock123
07-01-2010, 04:00 PM
Unless you want units to move around obstacles, then you have to implement a path finding algorithm, which is a bit trickier. :p

For the sake of thermo, i'd have the player do that themselves.

Then agin, you could just set the key switches to move away from the walls, that might work, a bit,

Asbestos101
07-01-2010, 04:41 PM
It still feels like theres holes in your plan that seem to over simplify the task of making a functional rts, let alone an 'epic' one.

Also, you can set keyswitches to follow keys? Not that I don't believe you, but got a link so I can see it?

rtm223
07-01-2010, 10:50 PM
I'm just gonna step in and disagree with everyone in the thread :p

@fishrock, TBH, I think your descriptions of an RTS implementation are very much lacking in what would be required to create a basic user experience. Your cursor would only work on a fixed camera angle, the lack of intelligence in route finding would be annoying, targeting, tactical movement and the entire issue of opponent AI is missing from your descriptions. Asbestos has a very good point when he says your design is a very, very simplified overview of what is required, unless you wish to make a very clunky and poorly executed system.

@Asbestos: Christophe may have been involved with the development of the new tools, but he's just a creator, from the community, just like you and me. From our POV, knowing that it is possible to create such a thing should be enough to overcome all the barriers in our way. If someone else can do it, so can we.

@Rogar: Route planning is unnecessary: with careful design of the systems and the terrain you can get by on a S-R AI system alone. If you enhance that with a little swarm intelligence (leave markers for dead ends etc.) and carefully design your terrain, the impression of route planning can be quite effective. Thinking back to the mid-90s (and later) RTSs, the route planning was clearly not anything more than a bit of trial and error, yet that worked.

Finally, side note:

Also, you can set keyswitches to follow keys? Not that I don't believe you, but got a link so I can see it?
There are movers that can be set to orient themselves or move towards a specific magnetic key. I don't have a specific link, but I'd hope I'm a good enough source for ya ;) However, simply dropping a key like that would cause interference between units that are already moving and units that you want to initiate moving at a different time, to a different location.


Make no mistake: an RTS in LBP2 is not a simple task. Sure you could knock together a few basic point and click commands in a couple of hours, but if you actually want something that is worthwhile for people to play, then it's going to be a lot of work.

Vertrucio
07-01-2010, 11:09 PM
They can be fun novelties to play though, say as part of a larger more traditional bunch of levels. Say you have sackboy building an army in a the first few levels, then the third level could be a little mini-RTS of him leading that army to storm the place.

If you work small first, build your experience with making RTS games, you can scale things up much more easily.

Fishrock123
07-02-2010, 12:38 AM
Sure sure. Either way, all levels are a lot of work, and if the Devs can do it in this game we'll figure it out sooner or later.

Asbestos101
07-02-2010, 01:44 AM
@Asbestos: Christophe may have been involved with the development of the new tools, but he's just a creator, from the community, just like you and me. From our POV, knowing that it is possible to create such a thing should be enough to overcome all the barriers in our way. If someone else can do it, so can we.


Lol, motivation is not an issue for me :P

I'm not trying to discourage fishrock or anyone else from trying to make an RTS, I'm just trying to bring peoples expectations more in line with the reality of how non-straightforward it'll be.

And you said you'd disagree with everyone in the thread but you did kinda' agree with me a little bit ;)

Rogar
07-02-2010, 09:08 AM
@Rogar: Route planning is unnecessary: with careful design of the systems and the terrain you can get by on a S-R AI system alone. If you enhance that with a little swarm intelligence (leave markers for dead ends etc.) and carefully design your terrain, the impression of route planning can be quite effective. Thinking back to the mid-90s (and later) RTSs, the route planning was clearly not anything more than a bit of trial and error, yet that worked.

I'm going to disagree with you disagreeing. My point was that the presented logic (set a destination, head straight for it) was too limited, especially for an "epic RTS". We need something more advanced, be it a full-blown A* pathfinding algorithm or something along the lines of your suggestions.

I think Asbestos101 is right, you're much more agreeable than you make out to be. ;)

R0GUE--Elite
07-02-2010, 02:16 PM
well.. I'm going to move away from all this disagreeing and ask; how could you make a box select function!? how did he do that? I can see how its possible to get the four corners of the box but i cant see how it would select everything inside it/activate a mag switch on it which puts them in a mode to be commanded :confused:.

Could some one from the creator jam please inlighten me if you know the answer

EDIT: There was a box select function on the RTS that was made, right?

Asbestos101
07-02-2010, 03:00 PM
That is actually a really good point rogue ^^

I am also wondering now :s

Rogar
07-02-2010, 03:19 PM
It is probably placing a magnetic key at opposite corners. If they added angle options to magnetic keys it would be pretty simple: a unit needs to see both keys to know it has been selected. But now that I think about it... you can turn that the other way around. If you limit the magnetic switches to just a 90 degree angle, you'd get the same thing. If two diagonally opposed switches both see a key, then the unit must have been selected.

Fishrock123
07-02-2010, 04:14 PM
It is probably placing a magnetic key at opposite corners. If they added angle options to magnetic keys it would be pretty simple: a unit needs to see both keys to know it has been selected. But now that I think about it... you can turn that the other way around. If you limit the magnetic switches to just a 90 degree angle, you'd get the same thing. If two diagonally opposed switches both see a key, then the unit must have been selected.

You'd have to have something to always keep the key switch at the same positions for this to work though.

My problem is how do you get the vacuum to disappear after your done? Does it have a dissolve option?

rtm223
07-02-2010, 04:14 PM
EDIT: There was a box select function on the RTS that was made, right?

I don't think so. There is a multiple select, for sure, but I'm not sure if there is a box select.

to achieve box select functionality, collision detection and some nifty use of holograph material / switchable magnetic keys would probably be best, IMO.

Rogar
07-02-2010, 10:59 PM
You'd have to have something to always keep the key switch at the same positions for this to work though.

My problem is how do you get the vacuum to disappear after your done? Does it have a dissolve option?

I assume you mean keep the magnetic switches at the same orientation. And for that we get the new gyroscope thingamajog (not sure what they officially call it). As for the vacuum disappearing: IIRC there is going to be a destruct switch that you can put on anything to make it disappear in a variety of ways.


to achieve box select functionality, collision detection and some nifty use of holograph material / switchable magnetic keys would probably be best, IMO.

Oh yeah, I forgot about collision detection. That might work.

rtm223
07-02-2010, 11:00 PM
IIRC there is going to be a destruct switch that you can put on anything to make it disappear in a variety of ways.

Yes but remember as well that vacuum can have logic-controllable transparency, so generally you will just have it invisible rather than keep on emitting and destroying it.

Asbestos101
07-03-2010, 12:41 AM
Yes but remember as well that vacuum can have logic-controllable transparency, so generally you will just have it invisible rather than keep on emitting and destroying it.
I wasn't aware of that.

How very handy indeed.

R0GUE--Elite
07-03-2010, 07:51 PM
does collision detection work with gas or vacuum material that doesnt actually 'collide'? for example, if something passes through gas or vacuum material, does it count as a collision?

Kung Fu Hotdog
07-03-2010, 10:31 PM
Yeah I think it does, I remember hearing somewhere about using holographic material with a collision switch as a custom-shaped motion sensor, so presumerably it is possible.

Fishrock123
07-03-2010, 11:13 PM
Yeah I think it does, I remember hearing somewhere about using holographic material with a collision switch as a custom-shaped motion sensor, so presumerably it is possible.

Vacuum can be set to collide, I think it says in rtm's features thread.

Inother words, it can be set to trigger colision switches.

R0GUE--Elite
07-04-2010, 12:23 AM
Ok, to be sure, can it activate a collision switch as it passes through something (without colliding physically, if you know what I mean)?

Fishrock123
07-04-2010, 03:45 AM
Ok, to be sure, can it activate a collision switch as it passes through something (without colliding physically, if you know what I mean)?

That's the point. You can make it like a custom shaped mag key switch. Very useful.

Clarification: it is always gas-like in the sense it goes through objects.

R0GUE--Elite
07-04-2010, 05:04 PM
Oh, ok thanks fishrock123

Scifiguy
07-06-2010, 10:11 PM
Another problen with AI would be pathfinding, sure, you could use magnetic key switches to move units in a straight line, but what happens when they come up against an obstacle? You'd have to program some sort of collision avoidance system into it which to me sounds like a pain in the you-know-what. Also, since menus and HUDs would be visible to all players, what would happen if to players were looking at the same part of the environment. Overlapping cursors and menus would be, in my opinion, the single biggest challenge to making a multiplayer mode. Nevertheless, you have a bold vision and I wish you luck. You'll need it!

Daldrez
07-09-2010, 05:18 AM
I am very excited about making RTS's in LBP2 and will definitely start on one as my first project, perhaps we could work together moony?

Mkwone
07-09-2010, 12:55 PM
TBH no matter how simple it was any RTS that works in principle would be a great achievement.

Even if it's something like cannon fodder would be a huge achievement for the LBP community.

Fishrock123
07-09-2010, 02:42 PM
TBH no matter how simple it was any RTS that works in principle would be a great achievement.

Even if it's something like cannon fodder would be a huge achievement for the LBP community.

I thinl LBP2 raised the bar a lot. :s