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How should the terraforming mechanic be rebalanced (if ever)?

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19 months ago
I'm sure many of us have heard that players could terraform large portions of the map for a fairly cheap price point. However, did you know that you could do so in some rather annoying, or even frustrating, ways, such as, say, burying a troublesome strider deep underground, where it can't move or shoot? Or burying certain units or structures underground (such as, say, Outlaws, Racketeers, or Missile Silos) where they can't be easily attacked, yet could still attack enemies from within their pits? (I'm sure that a few people already knew about this feature, but were you among them?)

If I wanted to rebalance this mechanic, whilst still making it cheap to dig trenches or build walls, and still allowing players to bury certain units and structures underground, I'd make the following changes:

- 1. If hostile units or structures are nearby (within, say, 250 elmos), then constructors wouldn't be able to terraform, since all units would now emit a terraform-blocking aura. (However, special abilities, such as the Dirtbag's mounds or the Quake missile's massive smoothing effects, would not be blocked in this manner.)

- 2. Introduce new units that, or tweak existing units so that they, can lob projectiles that can roll or bounce around the terrain, making them more likely to hit units or structures that are stuck within holes or trenches (similar to how, in real-life, you'd lob grenades into ditches or foxholes manned by enemy forces).
+1 / -0

19 months ago
no.
+5 / -2

19 months ago
striders should always be supported by cons, and often times the reason that happens is caused by caretakers being hidden in the ground.
just kill the caretakers as you go
+1 / -0
Dear santa.. every year i ask for quake missile to be buffed... yes i know its already a cheap terraform.. but its still uber unused and super uber situational

please make it twice as powerful so that i dont feel stupid making it to counter terra porc walls that just get repaired back to impassable before units can blink

even if it did cost 1/2 as much it would still be rarly used.. whhhhhy have a super unique unit that is meh?

even if it was 4 times better it could be stopped by building a lotus ontop of the wall

its just... a sad.. lonely.. unloved unit =(
+9 / -0
quote:
- 2. Introduce new units that, or tweak existing units so that they, can lob projectiles that can roll or bounce around the terrain, making them more likely to hit units or structures that are stuck within holes or trenches (similar to how, in real-life, you'd lob grenades into ditches or foxholes manned by enemy forces).


I didn't realize how much I needed this in my life. How many lobsters must I sacrifice to please the please the gods enough to get bowling balls in Zero-K?
+0 / -0
I genuinely dont know how I feel about combat terraform. I like the cool things it can do. What I don't like is the amount of perfect split-second UI-mastery that it requires, the all-or-nothing nature of it. Also, although I haven't really seen it yet, I bet that you could get into a terraform war with 2 comms or whatever that might get finnicky and janky as hell. There's a lot of situations I could imagine where it might just become a quick-time event.

Now, I don't feel like I've seen it nearly as often as I theoretically could, but I bet if we had some terraform-Godde playing the game, it'd be OP as shit relative to however it feels like now. Terragodde would be shot-blocking skirmishers, he'd go engineer commander every time and never lose it, he'd trap cyclops' every time they slowed down to navigate wrecks.

That being said, I suspect that after however many years of it being as it is now, the veterans are used to things as they are; and fundamental changes for things that aren't broken might receive pushback whether there's merit or not.


Regarding civil-engineering, non-combat terraform, I actually would like to see it experimented with in competitive games a bit more, and would petition to test out a decrease in cost of 5, 10, or 20 percent - even if that's just to compensate for the APM-cost/UI-wrestling.


quote:
even if it was 4 times better


Woah there top gun, let's say you put down that buff ray and we talk this thing out like adults, before someone gets hurt.

I've tried to use quake against natural terrain and was unimpressed. For 400/1600 metal, I was hoping to be able to turn Mt. Everest into a handicap ramp.
+1 / -0
19 months ago
I think terraforming is lame and should be removed
+0 / -0
Terraform is an unique feature to games in general and rts games in particular. If you like no terraform, go play somewhere else.
+0 / -0
19 months ago
Question: Would it be technically possible to make terrain deforming effects affect buildings and to allow terraforming of already built buildings?
+3 / -0


19 months ago
quote:
- 1. If hostile units or structures are nearby (within, say, 250 elmos), then constructors wouldn't be able to terraform, since all units would now emit a terraform-blocking aura. (However, special abilities, such as the Dirtbag's mounds or the Quake missile's massive smoothing effects, would not be blocked in this manner.)
Even cloaked units or those outside LOS? Sounds janky.

quote:
Question: Would it be technically possible to make terrain deforming effects affect buildings and to allow terraforming of already built buildings?
The engine-default is that buildings don't block terrain manipulation. I block terraforming under structures for two reasons:
  • It requires a lot of effort to make structure terraforming non-ugly. Structures could end up with bumpy terrain underneath them, and Skydusts could be made by terraforming the very center of the unit.
  • Pre-raising or pre-burying requires an investment that would not be worth spending if it were possible to raise or lower completed structures. Such an ability would effectively reduce choice by trivializing an application of terraform.
+2 / -0

19 months ago
some of the problems with the current:

- a pair of walled caretakers on high priority can bury lone heavy units relatively easily

- raising a relatively thin wall to cover from enemy fire is too effective as the attackers will generally stop firing
+2 / -0

19 months ago
Would it be technically possible to split the difference so that constructive terraforming cannot be done to a completed building but destructive terraforming (quake/tremor/whatever) can be done?

Personally I like the way the game allows quick excavation of pit traps. It's a niche piece of assymetric warfare that requires one to prepare in advance. If caretakers are a bit too good at it, then maybe they should lose the ability to commence a terraform (just as they can't initiate any other build)?
+1 / -0
quote:
Pre-raising or pre-burying requires an investment that would not be worth spending if it were possible to raise or lower completed structures. Such an ability would effectively reduce choice by trivializing an application of terraform.

My problem is with Pre-raising and Pre-burying. They are, right now, the only non-troll uses of terraforming. Pre-raising or pre-burying is not an investment. It is a best practice. It should always be done. Why is it done? To make units, which get to the structure unable to kill it. The range bonus is secondary. Have you ever tried killing a raised Cerberus or Bertha with raiders or assaults? You can't. (But of course it can still hit you.) Because you can't lower or raise a platform on which a building exists, and raiders and assaults have a paralyzing fear of firing upwards at the thing right next to them (often they can't even see it for some reason), the only way to kill them is ... with artillery.

Sooo:
If:
Buildings could move up or down after they are built (or maybe just by destuctive terraforming)
Ways to counter terraforming deep in hostile territory became more accessible (Buff Quake!)
Terraforming was overall cheaper

Then:
We'd see more uses of terraforming like bridges, ramps, and walls
You could kill raised terraformed porcfests with assaults and long-range anti-terra support

+2 / -0


19 months ago
I would like to try making structures movable by weapon smoothing, but is is not that easy.
+1 / -0
if quake could average a bigger area would it make a smooth ramp that units coul walk up to kill raised porc? y'know.. if it was buffed allot

hmm on second thoughts this is too exploitable because you could shoot your own raised stuff to make a cheap mound
+0 / -0