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Show timers for teammates' support powers / superpowers #15758

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FRenzy-OpenRA opened this Issue Oct 30, 2018 · 6 comments

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@FRenzy-OpenRA

FRenzy-OpenRA commented Oct 30, 2018

An idea :
In team games, it would be interesting to know if our teammates have support powers (paradrops, ...) or superweapons (IC, Chrono), and their timers.

It could give more readability to the current game status, and improve coordination.

It is very common in team games to waste time / opportunities by always asking / telling "Who has IC ?", "Chrono in xx sec" ...

@pchote

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pchote commented Oct 30, 2018

The timer visibility is already exposed as stances, so this is just a simple yaml tweak.

@abcdefg30 abcdefg30 added the Easy label Oct 30, 2018

@avalach21

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avalach21 commented Oct 30, 2018

I think this is a great idea...

For further discussion, I am wondering how people feel about not just seeing your teammate's support power timer, but also enemy superweapons.

We currently see enemy Atom Bomb countdown. In RA2 you would see enemy Nuke/Weather Control as well as Chrono and Iron Curtain countdowns for all players, both teammates and enemies. There was a lot of discussion about how powerful Chrono MCV is..

I think having the countdown timer visible would help you prepare for the chrono/iron curtain to mitigate how powerful it could potentially be. It is also fun to keep it as a surprise though, so I have no strong feeling on this.. just curious if anyone else has any thoughts.

Definitely think at a minimum though we should see our teammates countdowns so that we dont both waste an IC or Chrono or Parabomb etc at the same time.

@FRenzy-OpenRA

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FRenzy-OpenRA commented Oct 30, 2018

Interesting points.

I think it is still relevant to keep the element of surprise for most types (except abomb) .
For instance, exposing timers such as parabombs would give a hint to the enemy of when this power is used, letting him guess and know the potential target, thus rendering this power useless. Same for paradrops I think (usual target are ore patches).

Also, for powers like IC or Chrono, being non-exposed allows for a first surprise attack. Afterwards, the opponent will know that's it's available every 2 mins.
Furthermore, being exposed will let the enemy know that you have teched up (well ... it's the case with GPS you'll tell me ... )

@FRenzy-OpenRA

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FRenzy-OpenRA commented Oct 31, 2018

Graphical suggestions for displaying support powers' status :
(Note that white color = own team, black color = enemy teams. In this example, it's a 5v5v5)

  • Original (modified) :
    v0

  • Support powers (text) :
    v1a

  • Support powers (icons) :
    v1b

Both ideas could be coupled with a toggle option (hotkey?), to show these additional informations (whether text, or icons) or hide them.

@matjaeck

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matjaeck commented Oct 31, 2018

Another approach would be to use building tooltips for it and combine the implementation with #5606.

@avalach21

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avalach21 commented Oct 31, 2018

Interesting points.

I think it is still relevant to keep the element of surprise for most types (except abomb) .
For instance, exposing timers such as parabombs would give a hint to the enemy of when this power is used, letting him guess and know the potential target, thus rendering this power useless. Same for paradrops I think (usual target are ore patches).

Also, for powers like IC or Chrono, being non-exposed allows for a first surprise attack. Afterwards, the opponent will know that's it's available every 2 mins.
Furthermore, being exposed will let the enemy know that you have teched up (well ... it's the case with GPS you'll tell me ... )

Yea.. I definitely think spy plane/paratroops/parabombs should remain hidden, but as you said :-p then you have to wonder why GPS is being exposed? I understand it's powerful and it was probably done as a balance decision but seems a bit inconsistent.. Also kind of punishes Allies experimenting with quick techs by announcing it to the other player no matter what (even earlier than a SW would). And IMO the last thing we need is punishing outside-the-box strats & build orders.

In any event, while it certainly adds to the surprise factor for the first time, i think in some kind of way having the super weapon timers announced could actually increase the strategic depth by allowing more planned out super weapons strategies. OpenRA in many ways seems to look to RA2 as a design reference so I am just thinking about how applying RA2's treatment of superweapons timers would play out in OpenRA

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