Improvement: Resource System Overhaul - PlanetSide Universe
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Old 2013-01-14, 02:21 PM   [Ignore Me] #1
ShadetheDruid
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Resource System Overhaul


So, more random ideas from me, this time on the subject of the resource system. These are just some random ideas I had, and while something like this could be interesting (or, alternatively, a big steaming pile), it's likely never to reach further than one post that gets buried down on page two in a week. But part of the fun of ideas for me is talking about them to anyone who cares to read, so here we go!

The goal of this (other than to think up random meaningless ideas for the fun of it ) would be to make the resource system functional and balance the hard limits of that system with the game's philosophy of not limiting people too much. Plus making it interesting for those of us who are into RTS style resource management by having some aspects of that, while not forcing those particular aspects on those who aren't.

A couple of things you're going to have to bear with me on: This is all going to be very Swiss cheesey, in that it's probably going to have a lot of random problem holes that I haven't thought through quite enough or unforseen issues that other people will spot right away. And, if I mention something from PS1 as a reference point and get it wrong, it's because I never played it and all my knowledge of the original is from a few basic overview videos on YouTube.

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Anyway, enough of that, here's the basics:

1) Rather than the resources we have now, change them and make things cost more than one type.

I've seen this on PSU before, so apologies to the person i'm stealing it from. Rather than mechanised, aerospace and infantry resources, we would have chemical, biological and mineral resources. Different things would require a different combination of each, such as most vehicles being a combination of mineral and chemical. Explosives would be chemical. Anything healing related would be biological. MAXes mineral. Etc etc.

This would allow things to cost a good spread of resources, rather than only one resource really being used (or used more) than the others. The exception here would be biological, because other than healing items I don't know what you would have cost it (unless you made something that doesn't cost now cost something, like AMS respawns for example).

But in the end, it doesn't have to be those three specifically. It could be a different three resources that give a good mix of costs and makes all three equally important. For the purposes of this, i'll just keep using those as a general example.

2) Resources based on the region, rather than the player.

Each region would have a hard resource cap, larger for big bases, much smaller for tiny outposts. Warpgates would have a very large resource cap (if we had sanctuaries, those would have extremely large caps). These would come in the form of physical resource silos, one for each resource in each base.

3) Resources would only come from the three main bases.

Rather than resources being gained per tick in small amounts from every base, they would instead only be gained from Tech Plants (mineral and chemical), Amp Stations (mineral and biological), and Bio Labs (biological and chemical).

4) A flow of resources would be sent to outposts and other bases.

As per a certain timeframe (aka per tick, however long that would be for this particular case), a certain amount of resources (the amount would depend on the base type, with small outposts gaining the least per tick) would be sent from the main silos at each of the above base types and sent to each base/outpost attached via hexes (ie. no link, no resources). This would go straight into the silos at each base, with any excess going to the warpgate along with the warpgate's own resource tick.

5) Anything pulled/resupplied from a base by anyone pulls from the silos.

Any vehicles pulled, explosives resupplied, etc (even by enemies via hacked terminals) would take resources from the silos of the base itself, rather than a resource pool on the player. Vehicles would still have a timer to stop people spam-spending resources from the base, but it would be on a per-base basis (waste your timer on one base and you can still get something somewhere else, assuming it has resources). Sunderers with AMSes would have their own little resource pools (pulled from the silos when it's spawned) to support players resupplying from them (which can also be resupplied directly from the silos).

To be honest, this is probably the biggest issue with this whole idea. Balancing a resource pool for the whole player base, instead of just a single player, would be a nightmare.

6) "Physical" resource links for hacking.

As simple as it sounds. Each non-big-three base would have consoles for hacking where infiltrators could slow (or even stop, if they're good enough) the resources to that particular base. Good for covert ops and resource denial. They could do the same at the big three bases as well, but just to reduce (not stop) the flow out.

The consoles would also give out general information to anyone, such as the time to a new tick of resources, and how much that's going to be. Plus how much is currently stored.

7) Resource transporters for resource management.

This would be something akin to the ANT from the original, just with resources instead of power. This would be an interesting addition and aspect to the game for those interested in the resource management side of things, without making it too necessary for those who don't.

I imagine this vehicle to be something like the original's ANT (heavily armoured but unarmed), obviously with certable upgrades. It would have capacity for a small amount of each resource, but have a cheap(ish) cert upgrade that allows the owner to specialise it in a single resource (and thus having a much larger capacity for that specific resource). You'd also be able to generally cert the crap out of it like you can other vehicles.

Just like the ANT, it would be able to pick up from a silo at any base and transport its load to new silos. This would be perfect for resupplying a base during heavy fighting without having to wait for the resupply tick (or resupplying Sunderers in the field), or taking the resources and fleeing with them before a base is lost. ..Or even stealing resources from an enemy base and making off with them.

This would also allow a faction with a small amount of territory (or none at all) to get resources, via siphoning off that which remains in their last territories and taking it back to the warpgate for safe keeping, or making a push (or more sneaky ops) to steal some from the faction that has a lot of resources via territory.

Stealing resources from an enemy silo, or resupplying one of your own would both give some nice XP rewards if successful.

8) Kittens.

Wait, what?

9) Making outposts mean something.

I think everyone pretty much agrees that outposts are relatively useless at the minute, more so than any other base type. The resource system could be tied into this in such a way to give them more meaning.

For example, something like a mining base could increase the amount of mineral resources per tick for the faction who owns it, assuming it's linked via the hex to the bases that produce mineral resources. Same for a farm and biological. A power-related facility could decrease the time between ticks. Etc etc. I'm sure people can come up with more interesting bonuses than that as well.

This addition on its own wouldn't suddenly make outposts really important, but it would be a start. Even being able to steal/gather/recapture resources from an outpost might make them more fun to fight over rather than just ignore.

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Overall I think this would be a very interesting (and functional) system, but i'd hate to be the person in charge of working out all the numbers and making it balanced. There's also the problem that it might be a bit complex for new players - even though the basic aspect is the same, overall it just moves the resources from personal-based to world-based and adds concepts that not everyone needs to worry about.

Any thoughts? Interesting concept, or big steaming pile of manure?
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Old 2013-01-26, 03:17 AM   [Ignore Me] #2
coconut
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Re: Resource System Overhaul


While I like some parts of your suggestion, I think no redesign of the resource item should increase complexity of the game. Matching expectations from new players is important.
Each of your suggestion has a cost (added complexity) and some supposed benefits.

1) Multiple resource types per item adds complexity, but I am not sure of the benefits. Why would that make the game more fun to play?

2) I can go with that. I've always thought that the total amount of resources earned by each empire depended on the number of soldiers on a continent. The way it is now can contribute to imbalance, encouraging players to go to continents their faction is already dominating. If the amount of resources is no longer tied to the population, which your suggestion makes possible, this problem disappears.

3) I don't have any issues with that, but what would the benefits be?

4) OK.

5) OK, I like that (see point 2).

6) A problem with that is that the defending side may remain oblivious to the problem and its cause. Once you noticed there is something wrong with the resource flow, assuming people notice that at all, how do you find where the problem is to fix it?

7) I've heard that before, and I think it could make an interesting addition by adding mission types (escort, intercept).

8) No. They are clearly OP.

9) Your point 3) makes them kind of useless. Personally, I'd have outpost be the source of resources, and leave bases and their role as it currently is (provide abilities to the empire owning them).
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Old 2013-02-03, 06:08 AM   [Ignore Me] #3
Plissket
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Re: Resource System Overhaul


Originally Posted by ShadetheDruid View Post

7) Resource transporters for resource management.

This would be something akin to the ANT from the original, just with resources instead of power. This would be an interesting addition and aspect to the game for those interested in the resource management side of things, without making it too necessary for those who don't.

I imagine this vehicle to be something like the original's ANT (heavily armoured but unarmed), obviously with certable upgrades. It would have capacity for a small amount of each resource, but have a cheap(ish) cert upgrade that allows the owner to specialise it in a single resource (and thus having a much larger capacity for that specific resource). You'd also be able to generally cert the crap out of it like you can other vehicles.

Just like the ANT, it would be able to pick up from a silo at any base and transport its load to new silos. This would be perfect for resupplying a base during heavy fighting without having to wait for the resupply tick (or resupplying Sunderers in the field), or taking the resources and fleeing with them before a base is lost. ..Or even stealing resources from an enemy base and making off with them.

This would also allow a faction with a small amount of territory (or none at all) to get resources, via siphoning off that which remains in their last territories and taking it back to the warpgate for safe keeping, or making a push (or more sneaky ops) to steal some from the faction that has a lot of resources via territory.

Stealing resources from an enemy silo, or resupplying one of your own would both give some nice XP rewards if successful.
I like this idea.

I'm not a fan of the current resource system because it feels so disjointed from the action. One moment I can pull a tank, the next I can only pull a ATV. Often I go to an area and only find out when I get to the terminal that my plan for something to do was ruined by lack of resources, and I don't seem to have any real involvement with it (buying boosts isn't my style, and they sound like they make a tiny difference anyway).

An ANT like resource system though would be very cool, it would be something that the more hardcore players could play with, while for the casual types that just log in to shoot something it would be something extra to shoot.

I'd like to see a system though where stuff just is there all the time to be picked up and taken to the front if the mines etc start to be useful.

On a slighly different note there is one oddball idea I wish they had done, when resources start to get low it would have been cool if instead of pulling a tank we get part of a tank, e.g. the bare frame with engine and maybe a turret with a simple gun and dune buggy like frame around it...

Maybe that would be too ambitious for people to understand what is happening (warning you can only have 60% of a tank due to resource constraints... or respawn constraints), but it could have some hilarious consequences!
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