Recent content by ElCrisp

  1. The Solution to Fix the Spear/Polearm Issues

    Even if spears were buffed substantially, swinging weapons have a number of mechanical advantages that makes them desirable.
    Swinging across an arc gives large coverage to hit a target, if your target moves or you have to move you still have large zone to hit the enemy with. Swinging weapons have a greater number of attack direction and so are marginally more difficult to defend against.

    The stabbing motion on spears is very exaggerated and over extended. Improving with skill, but still an odd animation.
    The ability to do short fast stabs for low damage (and potentially reduced stun) would be nice. As jabbing with the long pointy stick is sort of an apparent strategy to any who had picked up a stick.
    Overhand grip as a weapon mode also would be a nice addition, but perhaps beyond what is going to be persued in development creating new animations.
  2. Feedback on the New Culture Bonuses.

    I like the pro/con approach myself, it's just that they are heavily imbalanced in terms of what the player gets from them and what the AI does, as well as how general or niche they are. Some barely impact your game or are highly conditional(having to be a Merc for example to get part of Vlandia's), while others are a massive bonus from beginning to end - Battania being the most egregious outlier here with the move speed in forests.

    Some of this is pretty fixable though, I think.Take Vlandia as the current total dud example:
    • [Pro] 5% more renown from battles. 15% more income while serving as a mercenary.
    • [Pro] 10% production bonus to villages that are bound to castles.
    • [Con] Recruiting lords to armies costs 20% more influence.
    These are incredibly boring and highly conditional.

    What about something like this:
    • [Pro] 10% more renown from battles you're outnumbered in. +10 to all skills and 20% lower wages for Mercenary units in your parties.
    • [Pro] Allied villages gain hearth when your nearby parties are victorious in battle.
    • [Con] Recruiting lords to armies costs 20% more influence.
    Bam, now you have perks fitting the same theme but less conditional and that affect your gameplay in some tangible ways. I have incentives to play a Vlandian differently - field more Merc troops, more aggressively go after enemies raiding villages, and take on bigger enemy parties when I can. The more elite Mercenaries at lower wages of course helping with that. And the con makes a little more sense now, as this would be a playstyle favoring spending more time as a smaller party or army.

    That's the kind of synergetic and impactful kind of culture bonuses I'd prefer to have, anyway.
    The above is far more interesting way to do culture bonuses. Having them be a consideration for gameplay, though this may be harder to code.

    Using faction bonuses as a means to balance factions on the campaign map would be an awful design choice. Players would feel penalised for picking a faction because the game is unbalanced elsewhere, in a way that isnt even visible to the player at the point of them making a faction choice, why would they choose the penalised cultures?

    Why do these factions bonuses seem like a first draft I could have thought of after 15 minutes brainstorming. If every player can at a glance see how unbalanced these are then why release them? As another example policies are unbalanced with no AI implementations, when are we going to see a campaign side feature that is more than a first draft. Hard to balance anything around 20 different placeholders.

    "Recruiting and upgrading mounted troops is 10% cheaper.", "10% production bonus to villages that are bound to castles."
    These just from a numbers perspective appear meaningless, and the second one is laughable because it is even condtional.

    Faction bonuses are if anything an opportunity to expand on or emphasize a faction's identity. Players should be excited to explore the differences.
  3. Information about developments at snowballing problem

    I feel like a lot of people use "prevent snowballing" to add legitimacy to what they think are cool ideas. And some ideas are really cool but... they don't really address snowballing. The core of snowballing is winning factions being able to exploit their initial successes into permanent dominance, so any mechanic that doesn't directly gut a large faction's power doesn't do much.

    Like, I tried to see if just gutting the army numbers helped and it did, somewhat, but it was a bandaid fix and nothing like a balancing mechanic.
    There is partial truth to that, however people keep suggesting a few of the large obvious solutions because they are exactly that.

    Alliances and/or Civil Wars are needed not only to soft limit AI snow balling but also to limit player snowballing.

    This games campaign currently has shallow game play loops. Some features have mechanical depth but none of that is connected up and felt at the player end in the form of game play. Are there things on the campaign map that I feel I can manage? Can I make optimal and sub optimal decisions? Or am I just grinding down an endless march of doom stacks until both their armies and garrisons are depleted and I or some other neighboring faction can counter attack them. Then I go about painting the map my colour with no new considerations or difficulties. Isnt this game multigenerational?

    Dont get me wrong I love the mountain blade combat system its a fun dumb hack and slash, but what made that fun and not stale in previous instalements, was the story of development of my character and progress on the campaign map. Which made each battle feel like it was a part of the journey, or alteast gave a good feeling of progress.

    People are crying out for something more than numerical back end changes, though it is important, hard and necessary work. Which in fact does yield results in game play in ways that players might not notice (i.e. players dont notice clans going broke but they will notice the collapse of a faction which results from it)
    However many people are looking for a radical shift in their gameplay experience on the campaign map. Snowballing is a practical problem but with how stale the game feels particularly at late game, it seems like we are rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Not inttending for that metiphor to be so grave, but people want some damn ambition for the 11 years in the making sequel to Warband.

    To whoever needs to read this message, tripple the team working the campaign side of the game and give them a project leader and coordinator.

    Again thanks for all your work mexxico.
  4. Information about developments at snowballing problem

    I think in looking for fixes to the AI there is a lot to be gained from scripted routines of behaviour.

    As Bannerman man pointed out complexifying auto calculations and there for threat assesements can have an exponetial effect on the number of calaculations resulting in a performance hit. So rather than trying to improve the realism or intellegence of AI tactics the focus should be on AI strategy.

    So how does the AI behave that benifits their long term and perhaps personal success on the campaign map. If raided do the AI try to set up patrols, are these patrols large enough? What is the priority of breaking a seige VS besieging a settlement myself, and how is this different if the faction has fewer fiefs left? How does my current distance effect this choice? If so should I stop gallivanting off in foregn lands?

    The army system strikes me as a issue here, how do parties execute the above behaviours as an army vs as individual parties. When do they ignore process that might be better served as a collection of individual parties instead of an army and vise versa

    Armies can cause other issues, the brute strengh of a 1000 man stack can flaten the strategy a bit. In the previous mount and blade titles having a larger number of lower stakes field battles with only a few parties was more common (I feel), which possibly made outcomes less decisive. If in a fight a faction loses 40% of faction strength vs 10% in one go, that reduces their abilty to then respond appropriately to the changed situation, i.e. to recuit and mount a defense.
    Also the plural number of armies feels like it results in more seiges as clan parties can together cross the threshold to make a seige possible, so with more candidates for successful attack there needs to be an almost equaly large increase in successfully mounted defense which is I imagine a slighlty more complex behaviour as how do you hold forces in reserve for a second defense.

    These facts can be obscured by slightly inflated starting garrision numbers (not 100% on garrison numbers or tiers being higher than when the game progresses) As the first few seiges are hard to amass for and the first few field battle losses are pulled from garrisons. In this way garrisons create a latent rate of change for the tides of war..

    The main purpose for the creation of the army system to me seemed the opportunity for the player to lead armies and fight seiges which were to be one of the centre peice changes for this next generation Mount and Blade title. However I dont think the AI strategy making has quite caught up to this change.

    While in the above post I have discribed some complex decision making, these choices might only need to be assesed far less often than say, terrain or army composition calculations for auto resolve.
  5. Campaign Party Stamina

    +1 There need to be more ways to upset the binary of faster parties simply being uncatchable or picking every fight.
    Even perhaps if you could change your march speed but fatigue earlier. Although that is again an even higher level of complexity for the AI.
  6. Information about developments at snowballing problem

    As you see total kingdom budget is 8000K at 1084 (game start) but it rises 30000K at 1104 (20 years later) so this shows we already have a money inflation at world and as you see kingdoms with high number of fortification (Khuzait, Vlandia, Aserai in sample test) have high money inflation. Increasing fief incomes will make rich kingdoms even richer and create new problems and make money inflation worse. Reducing loot income can be one solution but these lords mostly do not earn money from looter loots already. Loot is income for everybody while fief income is income for mostly powerfull kingdoms. Already 66% of total income is fief income currently remaining is loot income. Increasing fief income do not solve our problem, Battanians have already 2 town 2 castles in total for last 10 years of test they already have limited number of fiefs. This will help stronger factions with bigger territory more.
    If the winners of a battle recieves all of the loot and all of the fiefs this creates an obvious snowballing effect. We in this thread have been trying to reduce the acceleration of that snowball, and prevent it from being the same factions snowballing every game.

    However the inescapable fact remains there is no way outside of warfare to inflict economic damage on a faction. Because war is almost the sole cause of a change in income for a faction.

    We have quite a nuanced economic system but the only way to use it as a weapon against the dominate faction is while being at war with them. Raiding as a way to undermine fief income and the growth of dominate powers is only accessible through war. Wars which already weakend factions are simply more likely to lose.

    In the real world politics and economics is the only basis that dominate military powers can be constrained, and even then military might is a more decisive factor.
    All politics including tribute negotiations between factions is determined solely by war in this game.
  7. Allow clan armies to be created while not in a kingdom

    I agree with op and think it feels very wonky not being able to form armies of you clan mates. At the same time I agree partially with @clovis_sangrail that not being attacked is an advantage that others dont recieve. Forming an army within someones territory should be an act of aggression in and of itself. But of course we run into a recurrent issues in this game, that territory is in no way defined.
  8. Recovering from casualties almost impossible in this game?

    Not when plenty of people already made it blindingly clear, that the particular situation the op is suffering from is not a problem with the system, but of his own doing.

    As a rule of thumb, sieges for the attacker require around 3~4 times more men than the besieged. This is true in both actual history, and games that follow realistic depiction of history. The 1st siege of Rhodes in 1480 saw around 80,000 ~ 100,000 Ottoman troops laying siege to 3,000~4,000 defenders with around 20~30 times the numbers advantage for the Ottomans, and yet the Hospitallers successfully defended their island with 30,000 casualties (10k immediate deaths) for the Ottomans.


    In contrast, the op, laid siege to a 1,000 man settlement with 1,000 troops -- a 1:1 ratio. Is it any surprise that a significant chunk of his army was decimated?

    The amount of casualties that result from such poor tactics is something that does not happen normally, because seasoned players know better than to foolishly besiege a spot with 1:1 numbers unless they're intending to abuse the game system and cheese it out somehow. Again, enough people told the op that this is the case -- the op's mistake is what made it so difficult to replenish the troops, not the system.


    And yet, page after page the op refuses to listen to the majority opinion of the community and insists it's the game that screwed him over, and does not acknowledge his mistake. So, who really broke the "good faith" of the principle of charity here? You tell me.

    At this point, the only real response that's warranted is "git good", since taking time to explain things --- coming from multiple people who initially DID approach with good faith --- is obviously a waste of time.
    Currently the in battle advantage of seiges is so low it probably wouldnt matter much if you did siege 1000v1000 but what op actually said was
    The issue is that after a painful bloody siege or a 1000vs1000 bloodbath
    He didn't "refuse to listen" he maintained his view that was based on his experiences. He recieved some rensponses that where counterposing his views in good faith. Then some counterposing his views that contained incomplete or incorrect infromation about the game. Then he copped a couple of rude responses and the conversation degenerated and its hardly surprising he dug in on his position as a result.

    Not saying OP is some saint in the way he discussed it either. The capitalising random words for emphasis or to some how make your points more cogent is a pet peeve of mine as it just comes accross as some weird from of condescension, even though I dont think that is the intention.

    Anyway my post was only a lament over how many of these threads unfold.
  9. Recovering from casualties almost impossible in this game?

    It doesn't though
    Yes it does
    current passive xp gain per troop is (5 + troop level) per each troop in npc parties and this is not a low value.
    The above post of mexxico's I am quoting included discussions about lowering this passive xp rate the AI recieve. This is in addition to any XP gained from perks of the AI party leader.

    I am also not against the AI cheating in this regard, but there is an active conversation about what the right balance is.
  10. Recovering from casualties almost impossible in this game?

    I think everybody in this thread telling op to "just lower the difficulty" is a bad faith critisism based in insecurities over possible directions of development.

    You can easily say, no I disagree I think recruitment / recovery is in a fine place without also then dismissing op's whole opinion based on he should "just lower the difficulty."

    People on this forums often try to win arguments on game design direction based on this flatening argument. Out of fear that things will become more casual if they dont "win" or shut down the conversation by any mean necessary.

    I dont have an opinion that aligns with OP but clearly the AI cheats for XP and recovery are hotly debaited issues / features, this interacting with the player abilty for recovery seems like a spcae with a tone of balance levers and coversation to be had.
  11. Information about developments at snowballing problem

    I agree the Infinite duration tribute system always struck me as problematic, It might not be a huge amount per clan but it can probably be a difference maker.

    Low peacetime income strikes me as a problem in game design that affects both the player and the AI and therefore I think it deserves more dev focus, and more ambitious solution making. Also the lack of player things to do during peace is a parallel issue that could be addressed simultaneously with the right solution. While I am in support of doing some logical accounting fixes for that AI I think new systems or relationships between systems need to be made.

    To be clear I think mexxico is doing amazing work within his limitations I am just making the case for him getting more help and a longer leash.

    In regards to needing broke clans in the late game so the player has someone to recruit, maybe a player's relationship with that clan should do more to reduce the barter cost, and there should be meaningful ways to improve clan relationships.

    Another thing i would look at is Issues (quests) as they currently exist, they are meant to simulate time spent looking after your settlements, as they generally speaking apply some sort of negative economic drag (-loyalty, -prosperity, -security) to your fiefs.
    My understanding is AI clans will sometimes visit their settlemtents and "solve" these issues themselves. So my question is in practice which factions are most able to solve these issues and get the economic benefit? Is it clans who are winning all the wars and hence have a lot of safe space within their borders? Is it the clans at peace and therefore have the time to return home? Do AI clans get money rewards the same as the player? If peacetime can be made the best conditions under which to complete issues (or an AI that has taken a more defensive stance due their defeats on the battlefield) then this can be a balance knob for the economy of clans.
    Perhaps some issues that when persisting can have a direct effect on fief income, or a positive effect on taxes for a period after completion.
    As many issues only spawn under certain conditions, perhaps a number of issues could be made that only spawn during peacetime.


    Perhaps lords should run caravans, given peace time is when they have their best return on investment. Or alternatively if a clan has the support of a notable perhaps the lord could collect their caravan's profits with the notable still gaining its power as normal. Representing the beneficial relationship of patronage, the merchant was able to requisition soldiers for its protection and pay the lord back their dues.

    Along this line I think the game would massively benefit from trade agreements combined with the above change. ie a faction doesn’t have a trade agreement with another faction their caravans can't do business in that faction's lands.

    This isn't just a cool change as to how it replicates the real world but it could actually perform an important balance function. There is currently no way to undermine another faction even economically except through direct warfare, this creates a huge problem. The only way for weak factions to regain any ground is to go to war and fight factions that are stronger than them which most likely just compounds their issues. Same with the infinite tribute system, the only way to solve their money issues is to go to war. This would provide a space for factions to "attack" the dominant faction without risking getting immediately stomped into the ground. Otherwise the only thing that really facilitates a come back is lucky 2v1 wars falling against the dominant faction
  12. Information about developments at snowballing problem

    We have one more problem by the way. Longer peace time means poorer clans currently. Because 35% of clan income is wars and 65% of clan income is taxes currently (as average). So if AI vs AI wars decreases this will increase poor clans especially if a kingdom lost half of their territory and if they have no enemy they will have big problems. Loot from looters do not bring that much gold. You can suggest making this ratio 20% loot / 80% taxes by increasing taxes and decreasing loots but this can make some players unhappy. I already reduced loots a bit in 1.5.7. Maybe can reduce more later and increase taxes a bit. However this time still kingdoms lost territories suffer much because losing territory means lower tax income also.
    I think loot being a smaller share of income is a good thing in general. If you wanted to cheat it you could simply make it so AI pay less wages durring peace time.

    Or the Lords collect a portion of town caravan icome during peace given caravans do better in peace? Just a spit ball if you want to do something inside the economy rather than my suggested cheat.

    Also
    Tests 1.5.7
    FactionClans YR0Fief Score YR0Clans YR20Fief Score YR20
    Aserai9251122
    Battania8181144
    Khuzait9211239
    N Empire9211016
    S Empire92230
    Sturgia922810
    Vlandia112486
    W Empire9201536

    Below is some observation of Clans movements at end game
    Aserai + 2 clans : 1 vland 1 emp
    Battan +3 clans : 2 emp 1 sturgia
    Khuzait +3 clans: 2 vland 1 vland rebel
    N empire +1 clan: 1 vland rebel
    S empire -6 clans
    Sturgia -3 clans +2 sturgia rebel
    Vlandia -3
    W empire +6 2 Sturgia 3 empire 1 emp rebel

    5 Total Rebel clans consolidated

    Broad observations: Clan defections didnt seem to be the deciding factor or further nudge in snowballing any given conflict. The majority of defections occur when a faction is majority wiped out. These defections would however make a comeback more difficult, but they dont appear to add a huge amount of momnetum in face of what is established by the already rolling snowball. The deffections just secure the decline of already pummelled factions.

    The wars in this one were quite fun to watch. Sturgia pushed into the North Empire early then got double teamed and swept out. Khuzaits swooping like vultures. Battania and vlandia traded sargot 6 or so times then vlandia actually won out and pushed into battania taking 2 of their towns, Vlandia then got on a multifront war and ended up losing to Battania despite almost having them on the ropes. Western empire went no where in a war with asarai early, sat at peice for a while, then found its success fighting enemies that were already at war. Securing territory in the north and south that had been heavily traded.
  13. What is the next major content after Rebellions?

    I believe anything else but working on this is a bit of a waste of time..., in my opinion.

    I believe you are correct in a sense, though the fixes mexxico is spitballing takes next to no time.

    Ultimately the ai will have to incorrectly assess forces otherwise they will always run.

    However having a 3-4x multiplier for the defense in autocalc siege battles and thus AI assesment of them means even in a situation where they assess your forces at 0.35 strength that is 0.35 x 3 = 1.05 or 0.35 x4 = 1.4

    Given siege defenses dont actually convery strong advantage to defenders, as mexxico describes them as closr to an open field battle, even this 1.05 number may be an over estimation of the player forces. (Of course the player in themselves can often be the difference maker.) Except of course all of the militia and garrison are still being horribly over estimated (3-4x) once the battle makes it into the live play simulation.

    So I'm curious if anyone who has faught in a siege defense has actually won it without some fairly substantial cheese. If you won was it basically a solo lift?
  14. What's Happening with Taverns ?

    I think for castles and towns they need to do ground up rework to figure out how the nav meshes must be constrained to suite an AI that they can create. So that sieges can be functional.

    At the same time in seige simulations (the batlles we as a player fight in) the fortifcation defender doesnt actually have much of an advantage when the fight plays out, the defensive elements of a fortifcation are struggling to be replicated in the game. So they need to design that too.

    This is a seperate issue to taverns which can be far less functional but you can see where the above might be consuming some deal of their time.
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