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Topic: Terrain control oddities

Astuur
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Joined: 2009-02-28, 10:08
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Location: Frankfurt / Germany
Posted at: 2010-05-27, 12:51

Here I am again stuck playing with the newest (5360) intermediate release.

http://www.uobod.de/help/Damn_border.png

The yellow guy keeps attacking me, but it's not him who prevents connecting my new fortress. The green enemy keeps a low profile ... not moving, no advancing, no attacks. He's safe .. I can't get at him. Grrrh...!

I've really learned to fear how Widelands shuffles the borders when you conquer an enemy military building- but so far I've always managed to connect my new sites with some additional battles. Not so now - end of the line for all I can see. And I thought I knew the game by now face-smile.png

Of course the "sun if fire" map is an extreme map with all of that blocking lava, but it also is an truly excellent map that teaches you a lot about tactics and strategy. I'm not quite sure whom I want to blame here.. the map, or the way the border moves; but they both seem to work well hand in hand to stop me on the spot face-smile.png

Okay enough bitching.

Truth is that others have also expressed their surprise about the almost unpredictable way the boundry changes. I've learned so far, that this is a feature and also a distinct difference to settlers.

But what exactly is it, that this feature should prevent or guarantee?

What was bad about the Settles solution? (well I could name a few things here myself, actually)

Can I read the ideas behind it, somewhere?

Is there a way to better understand what the border will do, before I actually start an attack?

Ah ... and yes.... can someone find a solution for my final victory? Here is the savegame: http://www.uobod.de/help/stuck.wfg

thank you in advance if anyone is willing to shed some light!

greetings!


Being no programmer, I apologize for all my suggestions that imply undue workload and for other misjudgements due to lack of expertise or relevant skills.
I am on Win32, have no means to compile, and rely on prefabricated distributions (Thanks to Tino).

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SirVer
Joined: 2009-02-19, 15:18
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 13:59

The green player is unattackable. There is a bug report about this already, we are unsure how we can avoid such walloffs without bending the game rules.


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timowi
Joined: 2009-11-01, 23:08
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 14:10

Truth is that others have also expressed their surprise about the almost unpredictable way the boundry changes. I've learned so far, that this is a feature and also a distinct difference to settlers.

I haven't heard many people complaining about that. There's nothing unpredictable with the borders. It's really simple: You only get land that is not under control of an enemies military site. In my opinion the borders in settlers II were much more surprisingly and unpredictable. I like the way it works in widelands As long as you do not loose (or destroy) military site you will not loose land.

But what exactly is it, that this feature should prevent or guarantee?

It guarantees that you never loose land without loosing or destroying a military site.

What was bad about the Settles solution

  • unpredictable
  • your borders move even you have changed nothing and without any contact
  • I did not like it face-smile.png

Is there a way to better understand what the border will do, before I actually start an attack?

As I said above: You get only land which is not under control of other military sites. You have to look which other militarysite your victim has in the area you attack.

You have a complete different problem here. You can place buildings side by side and make it impossible to move from the SO to NW of the buildings. There are already bug reports about that. The problem here is the sentry next to the fortress (green player). This combination (small building south-west of a big building in this place) make it impossible to move (or build roads) for SO to NW. It is not possible to attack the green in this game. So you have no chance to win this game as long as the green player do not destroy the sentry. It's not easy to fix this problem. There are some ideas how to prevent this, search for the bug reports.

Timo

Edited: 2010-05-27, 14:10

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Astuur
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Joined: 2009-02-28, 10:08
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 14:41

Okay ... thanks Timo for taking the time to explain. I can see now that my problem is not directly related to border but to the noarrow space.

It's not that I dislike the princple of "no land without a victory". That is fine with me. And true, in Settler you could burn down enemy civilian buildings by just putting up more and more military sites against the border, without even a fight. I hated that, too.

But this still does not explain some things to me.

You see the little island within the green zone? I once had a sentry there which I could not keep. I decided to burn it down, and was lucky that my soldiers made it home. There is now nothing that should block the green player from advancing. I have even killed the flag that stood there. And still this spot is mine. For what reason? That is what I meant with unpredictable. I think the green player is blocked by that island. And if it under the influence of my miltary sites, then how come, the other zone (where the lonely green flag is) is not mine? Where does this "memory effect" come from? Do you sort of keep track of the history of land owners, or how is this done?


Being no programmer, I apologize for all my suggestions that imply undue workload and for other misjudgements due to lack of expertise or relevant skills.
I am on Win32, have no means to compile, and rely on prefabricated distributions (Thanks to Tino).

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timowi
Joined: 2009-11-01, 23:08
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 15:05

There is one exception to the "do not take owned land" principle: The conquering of military sites. There is it necessary to force the ownership of that land. Because of that you got this land. This land is now guarded by the militarysite on that land and your fortress and towers near the border (because it is within their conquering range). After you destroy the militarysite there the land is still guarded by the military buildings near the border.


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Astuur
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Joined: 2009-02-28, 10:08
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 17:10

I am trying to re-word all of what I have learned so far: Let's see:

You cannot gain new land in Widelands by just putting up a military threat. The land that someone has taken while it was free to take will stay with him, as long as any aggressor does not conquer one of his military building.

If you conquer a military building, you do get the building plus the flag, but no other land, unless there is no other site that also guards this space. This leads to the phenomenon, that a newly conquered military building often is an island within enemy territory and cannot be connected to your roads.

If you want land ownership (so can build roads), all enemy military sites that guard the spot must be taken.

To predict what will happen when you attack an enemy site, you must know how large the protection zones of his buildings are, and whether they will overlap on the region in question. (This would be a lot easier if you could look at his influence zones, like you can look at your own - would that be valid suggestion?)

There is currently an unsolved problem, unrelated to land ownership, where a player can block access to his territory by placing buildings so close together that there is no path for attacking enemy soldiers. At the same time, I guess, he blocks access for his own attacking soldiers.

I do not understand what SirVer means about not bending the game rules. I am sure it cannot be so easy, but why can you not disallow 2 adjacent military buildings if there is no space for a soldier in between?


Being no programmer, I apologize for all my suggestions that imply undue workload and for other misjudgements due to lack of expertise or relevant skills.
I am on Win32, have no means to compile, and rely on prefabricated distributions (Thanks to Tino).

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timowi
Joined: 2009-11-01, 23:08
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 17:41

I am trying to re-word all of what I have learned so far: Let's see: You cannot gain new land in Widelands by just putting up a military threat. The land that someone has taken while it was free to take will stay with him, as long as any aggressor does not conquer one of his military building. If you conquer a military building, you do get the building plus the flag, but no other land, unless there is no other site that also guards this space. This leads to the phenomenon, that a newly conquered military building often is an island within enemy territory and cannot be connected to your roads. If you want land ownership (so can build roads), all enemy military sites that guard the spot must be taken.

You're completely right.

To predict what will happen when you attack an enemy site, you must know how large the protection zones of his buildings are, and whether they will overlap on the region in question. (This would be a lot easier if you could look at his influence zones, like you can look at your own - would that be valid suggestion?)

I think this is invalid spying. You should not get information about enemy buildings. Perhaps a scout can help you?

There is currently an unsolved problem, unrelated to land ownership, where a player can block access to his territory by placing buildings so close together that there is no path for attacking enemy soldiers. At the same time, I guess, he blocks access for his own attacking soldiers. I do not understand what SirVer means about not bending the game rules. I am sure it cannot be so easy, but why can you not disallow 2 adjacent military buildings if there is no space for a soldier in between?

It in not way related to military buildings. In this case this can be every big/medium building combination. (On flat terrain) you can place buildings near each other (on the NO-SW sides) so it is impossible to walk between them. On example to prevent this would be to disallow building when walking around them is not possible. But that would influence the game in the whole. Not only in this situations.


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raistware
Joined: 2009-09-07, 17:31
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 19:45

And what about forbid construction of buildings, if and only if the path to reach every two points adjacents to the group of buildings where new building is going to be placed is longer that, for example 8 steps ? The number is only an example.

Every time a building is placed, this check will be done, and if it takes loger steps that X, forbid build. I think that this way problem is solved and impact on whole game is lowered, because we allow stacked buildings but only while they don't make difficult to walk arround they.

What other think?

Astuur: I also think that current land reclaim is a bit mad on specific situations face-wink.png


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sigra
Joined: 2009-03-05, 19:02
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Posted at: 2010-05-27, 21:32

raistware wrote: And what about forbid construction of buildings, if and only if the path to reach every two points adjacents to the group of buildings where new building is going to be placed is longer that, for example 8 steps ? The number is only an example.

I have predicted for years that this would be needed. Not only for buildings, but anything that can be placed on the map and not walked through. (For the same reason I have suggested to put trees and some other immovlables on trinagles, so that paths are kept clear.) We had this bug with farmers locking each other in at the shoreline. I fixed it by making farm fields walkgthroughable. If such a placement check that you described had been implemented, my fix would not have been needed.


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Astuur
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Joined: 2009-02-28, 10:08
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Posted at: 2010-05-28, 08:33

If I look at my screen in my Widelands game from that perspective - and really try to compensate for the fact that I have gotten familiar with the look -
I must say, that I can easily identify regions where the buildings are too crowded from an aesthetical point of view.

And it’s no wonder, since space is always a valuable and scarce resource.
I think it would do the game good, if a less packed placing of buildings could be enforced.
We all lived quite long with non-existent artwork, missing animations and placeholders — but meanwhile WL has become really,
really nice to look at - thanks to the graphic team. So why not show it less cluttered?
This could probably also help with the problem of flags at the north side of buildings, that sometimes arise.

But it may make some maps harder to play. What other implications are there, that speak against establishing something like
Raistware’s suggestion or Timo's (..disallow building when walking around them is not possible.)

@ Timo: I don’t quite follow you here ( „invalid spying”).
The information as such (size of the influence zones) is readily available in the game; it’s only a question of
applying that information to the current situation on the screen.
If I wanted I could always paint some overhead transparencies with that zones and use them on my monitor.
If „spying” is relevant, I’d vote foremost for hiding all information about stationed (and missing) soldiers in enemy buildings,
all productivity numbers - and for hiding enemy geologist’s results.
No, I think the real secrecy is from the fog of war that prevents a player form viewing what is happening at the core of enemy realms.
Showing the influence zone of a visible and identified enemy building is not so problematic IMO
compared to the other spying issues that exist.


Being no programmer, I apologize for all my suggestions that imply undue workload and for other misjudgements due to lack of expertise or relevant skills.
I am on Win32, have no means to compile, and rely on prefabricated distributions (Thanks to Tino).

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