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A new scoring system?

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 1:13 pm
by Thor7999
It seems to me that the current scoring system - your ranking being based exclusively on your experience - makes for monotonous play in the end. Most games end up with everyone - "good guys" and "bad guys" - taking every colony they find, setting it to "Prison - Construct Experience", killing every player and every npc they meet (yellow or red), and ... that's about it really!

Why not adopt a more balanced scoring system, where your score would be an aggregate of the following:

- Experience (but remove the possibility of colonies being set to produce "experience" - what on earth does that mean?).
- Reputation (this will put a penalty on "bad guys", eliminating the effect of pirates winning the game every single time)
- Net monetary worth (your total assets in all your colonies, both in terms of cash and in terms of buildings set down)

The reputation aspect will favor the good guys, the experience aspect will favor the pirates (as the saying goes "good girls go to heaven, bad girls go everywhere" :) ), while the net worth aspect will favour both sides, as it will give a strong motive both for colonising and for invading colonies. It will also mean that a few well-built colonies are worth as much as 100 biodomes-with-nothing-else, which makes sense.

To give meaning to this system, reputation should be more closely linked to the morale of colonists - all "positive morale" colonies, from content up, should earn some positive rep, while all "negative morale" colonies from downcast down, should cause a loss of rep.

With such a scoring system, we will see a clearer distinction between "good guys" and "bad guys", as there will be a motive to keep building your reputation well over 5,000. Also, there will be a stronger motive for building up colonies to include all the buildings, since their value, and the morale improvement they cause, will be included in the score.

How does this sound?

Re: A new scoring system?

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 4:18 pm
by Toonces
That's some pretty good thinking, but I prefer to keep reputation out of the scoring. I do agree that building exp is a bit weird but there definitely needs to be a way to translate colony control into score and this is the current way. I do want to add a stat to the character information screen and it will be either "Net Worth" or "Number of Followers". The latter would be the total number of colonists inhabiting colonies you control (colonists inhabiting corporate colonies would have their number divided by number of coproartion members). This new value, net worth or number of followers (maybe both) could play a role in scoring.

For now, exp is score and you can build it on colonies.

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 7:41 pm
by Vinadil
I have only played one game here... but the scoring seems a bit mystifying to me as well. It seems that the game strongly encourages you to play the pirate side since XP is directly related to all things combat/exploratory.

I know that planets CAN produce XP, but the way they do so could be better I think. Right now my planet of 4000 people with Advanced Arch set on Prison can produce some 240 xp/hour. That is good I think, but soon the morale will be extremely low... which really means nothing since it only hurts my rep (again go bad guys) and my cash (which does not affect score).

Perhaps players who build thriving colonies and make lots of money are no supposed to win... but I think some sort of more aggregate scoring method would make for much more diverse games.

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 7:54 pm
by Ipps
Usually when you make a large colony with 4000-5000 people you shouldn't tax the people until the last few days, that way you don't have to worry about keeping morale up (and REP loss is virtually insignificant even when morale is low). And plus, you won't have to worry about recovering your morale when there is an environmental disaster, which almost always happens on most large colonies. Also, morale and pollution seem to both affect each other, so if one is really negative it could bring the other down and then start a vicious downward cycle. The opposite holds true if one of them is really positive.

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 7:55 pm
by super_aardvark
Vinadil wrote:Perhaps players who build thriving colonies and make lots of money are no supposed to win...
Money can be an indirect source of experience, in a couple of ways:

1) Buy more shields, engage in more combat, get more xp.

2) Rush more colonies, set them to build xp sooner.

In addition, colonies can build nukes for you, which also leads to greater xp through combat.

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 8:07 pm
by Vinadil
Aardvark... notice that neither of those things have anything to do with successfully building/defending colonies. The fact is that a good colonizer might never see another PC and very few NPCs in the entire game. Now, perhaps that means they should have zero chance of winning... I am too new to know what the devs think. But, just running around plopping down 1k biodomes to "make XP" seems counter to making colonies have any real value.

As to the population/morale issue... though I agree that is how the system currently works, it does not make much sense if you are attempting to encourage people to build colonies. A more robust scoring system, that takes into accounts more than just XP gained through combat will make for more diverse games and playstyles. It is a simple fact. Now, if it is possible/desirable/worth the effort to make the changes to this game, is another issue heh.

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 8:59 pm
I agree that the current scoring model is geared towards the combat side of things however I feel I should point out a couple things that no one has mentioned in this post. Colonies with a "Unity" moral construct 50% faster meaning more exp. per hour so moral is a big factor if thats what you are going for. Also last Battle Royale round I won without being a "Pirate" I purposly kept my Rep up so I could sleep in Starports. My corp had 3 Unity artic worlds that we had built for making exp. and by the end of the game between all of our colonies each member of the corp was making more than 1000 exp. an hour. And we aren't even very good at colony building. However even with all that I would say 75-80% of my exp. was from fighting or taking colonies. Still it is not impossible to win a game as a colony builder its just harder and requires a LOT more time, effort, and skill.

Posted: Mon May 02, 2005 9:20 pm
by (MSR)Peace
ERr... I disagree. You have to concider what your analysis is based on. Servers make a HUGE difference, especially battle royal.

Anyone know how to win New Explorers (70 NPCs) or Stratosphere (100 NPCs I think)? I'd like to see how many hours you'd have to put in camping spawns to win those... Well, depending on a few things, like who your oponents are and what the galaxy looks like, and how many big players you manage to take down. Battle royal is NOT a colony-building server, I'll give you that. The only big thing they are good for there are having a good stronghold to sleep on and retreat to, and a productive weapons forge.

Against a good colony builder on certain maps, all my combat skills are no match. Anyoen remember Ugly? I don't remember his other names... He spammed colonies like mad, setting them up so fast and so good and so numerous that it was impossible to locate and knock them all down.

Posted: Tue May 03, 2005 11:17 am
by Vinadil
Perhaps the system works perfectly and I am just too new to use it correctly. The main thing that brings me here, though, is that it just "feels" wrong to get NO XP for actually building my colony. The "doing" is what gets you the XP when you fight. Even during a long battle with a NPC you are getting XP every time you do a certain amount of damage to him. But, with colonies you don't get that. The XP is not actively gained by doing the work of building a colony, but more passive. I guess in the end its really just being able to play the spreadsheet right... whoever can figure out the fastest/most efficient way to build a colony then turn it to XP production wins.

Posted: Tue May 03, 2005 1:34 pm
by (MSR)Peace
Hmm... You have a bit of a point. It would be nice to get a little experiance while your building your colony.... But as with combat, the big reward comes after the hard part is over, though you do get a little experiance during the fight.

Posted: Tue May 03, 2005 1:53 pm
by Irobeth
I agree, a small exp bonus when a colony completes a structure wouldn't be that bad