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The Campaign: Will it be balanced

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To be blunt.  I am not the least bit interested in a campaign if it is a string of "Academy" style missions where I am nothing but a punching bag for the computer.  
I already have a designer interface that is very difficult to use.  I want to design ships, not master an arcane, undocumented interface.

The tactical interface hardly merits the name interface.  No "big picture,"  no course or speed of the enemy (mouse over the enemy ship and get range and hit %.  no speed)  Even when I have full identity of the enemy ship, I know it's top speed, not it's current speed.

Right now, in order to get play balance, I take a 10 year technical advantage.  I'm pretty sure I won't get that in the campaign.

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If you need 10 year tech advantage to win against the AI  that has equal strenght to you, you must be doing something wrong.

When I play Custom i have to make AI 2-3 times stronger if i want to have challenging game.

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34 minutes ago, Aceituna said:

If you need 10 year tech advantage to win against the AI  that has equal strenght to you, you must be doing something wrong.

When I play Custom i have to make AI 2-3 times stronger if i want to have challenging game.

While I don't play this game,, but in there other UA and UG game I have brought this up cause they have Easy, Normal, and Hard.  Not every one is an expert player as some players are.  If your struggling to fight in Easy there is a problem.  Normal should be the normal play for folks and should give a bit of a challenge.  I hear a lot of guys in UA:AoS say Hard is to easy, but that is them, they aren't the normal casual player that will play the game and might thing normal is hard as hell.  There was an isssue with AI in UG:CW where they would take to much risk and charge all the time breaking your units effectively making easy mode more like hard mode to some.   So some times game balance does need to be looked at.    Another example in UA:AoS if you bring three ships of one BR the AI matched that with three like ships.  If you sold those three ships and bought one bigger ship of about the same matching BR as the three total.  The AI would bump up the tier ship to match yours, but you still faced 3 ships.  So even on EASY mode this just became ultra hard mode.   I haven't played in a while so not sure if they fixed this or not, but it was an issue that turned some matches into hard mode when they shouldn't be cause balance wasn't working right in game.   

As for the OP, some times taking a break from a game and coming back helps,  Remember it's in EA still and they are tweeking the game.  Also check out other players videos, some times it's a the simplest things we are doing wrong that hurt us in battle.

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Posted (edited)

You can tell the speed of the enemy by looking at the top of the screen. There should be silhouettes of all the ships you're facing separated by class and by whether or not they're sinking. You expand the groups and it shows you all the ships you can see, i.e. within detection range, of that class. Hover over the ship you want and it'll show you the speed of the ship as well as bring up the whole ship info on the right without you having to find the actual ship on the battlefield. I agree that a big picture kind of mode is needed. Maybe a 2D overview map kidna like RTW just to give context for things during large fleet battles where some divisions might be widely separated. A course would be nice, like a compass telling you which way you're going. 

I'm of the opinion that the game gives you way too much info about the enemy right now but I sadly don't see that going away any time soon. Maybe make it a toggle? For sure give us the class breakdown, countries released that info publicly although they would lie sometimes so maybe in the strategic mode make the game give us bad info sometimes for that. However don't show us the exact speed and heading of the enemy, don't give an exact breakdown of hit chance, dmg, or anything. Or the amount of ammo or anything. Some fog of war would be nice basically. Like RTW, you can tell when a ship has lost turrets and you can tell when a ship is sinking cuz it'll show a speed of 3 knots but I think that's a bug. Other than that you don't know anything about the enemy's condition and it makes for interesting decisions. I've retreated when I shouldn't have retreated cuz the enemy was almost dead but I didn't know that. Ive done the opposite and pursued thinking enemy was almost done and been horribly wrong. In the post battle report we can see the condition of the enemy but that's it.

As for overall campaign balance certain nations will have advantages over others and in RTW who you play as is basically the easy, hard mode choice. The US and Britain are easy mode. Germany, Japan, Italy, France are normal. Austria, Spain, and Russia are kinda hard, especially Austria and Spain cuz they just get nothing at the start. Different countries will have different naval budgets and territorial concerns. As Italy in RTW I almost never design long and medium ranged ships cuz I don't have to. The US will have to exclusively design long and medium ranged ships. 

Edited by Jatzi
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Posted (edited)
15 hours ago, Jatzi said:

As for overall campaign balance certain nations will have advantages over others

Excuse me, but where did you get this information? I didn't realise devs say this.

And this game is based on history (altrough campaing may differ from actual history while you play it) and balance just don't have place in game like that.

Edited by Aceituna

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The game is basically a 3D version of RTW so I'm just guessing that. But also like Great Britain will have more money and ships than Italy. That's just a given and that's what I meant by advantages. I'm sure different nations will start off with different economies and will have more or less money which translates to larger/better fleets or smaller/worse fleets in general. Also like I said there are different design considerations different countries will have to make like range. Italy has an advantage in designing ships because they just have to operate in the Med so range isn't super important. The US and Britain are not so lucky. Tech bonuses to certain things for certain countries that pioneered certain things makes sense to me, I don't know if it's gonna be in game but it makes sense. 

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On 5/17/2020 at 10:09 PM, Aceituna said:
On 5/17/2020 at 9:45 PM, Jatzi said:

As for overall campaign balance certain nations will have advantages over others

Excuse me, but where did you get this information? I didn't realise devs say this. (1.)

And this game is based on history (altrough campaing may differ from actual history while you play it) and balance just don't have place in game like that. (2.)

 

1. From their blogpost:

Quote

Each nation has its strength and weaknesses. For example, some countries will begin with much stronger naval facilities and greater economic power than others, but the randomization of technological advancements and events in each campaign session ensures that the final dominant power is going to be always unpredictable.

[Link to Blogpost] - The Playing Modes

 

2. Which is what @Jatzi was implying. At least that's how i interpret it.

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39 minutes ago, Mindstrip said:

 

1. From their blogpost:

[Link to Blogpost] - The Playing Modes

 

2. Which is what @Jatzi was implying. At least that's how i interpret it.

Yes he said that some nations Will have certain advantages for BALANCE.

And of course some nations Will be stronger than others (major nations)

So as i understant it Jatzi was talking about advantages for minor nations which Is not what blog post says.

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I was talking about major nations. BTW at least when I say major nations I mean every nation that's playable and minor nations are the ones that aren't playable. I'm guessing what you guys all mean is minor nations are like Austria and Italy. In which case I was talking about the differences between the two not anything to do with balance. Britain will be stronger than Italy at least at the start. But Italy will have a few natural advantages over Britain, they don't have to deploy forces all around the world and so can concentrate their forces much better than Britain. And the whole range thing which I've already stated. And actually in RTW I prefer playing the smaller nations for those exact reasons-less areas to be concerned with and it makes designing ships slightly easier. None of that is for balance, I'm not talking about balancing anything, I don't see a huge need for it. I'm just talking about natural pros and cons for each nation. The lack of balance in RTW makes it so that there are natural easy/hard modes in which country you play as. It seems pretty elegant to me and I hope UA:D takes the same approach. You  should feel some dread going up against Britain in the early years. Don't balance it to make the smaller nations easier to play, that takes the fun out of it.

The player is a big advantage for any nation and even outnumbered in RTW I can still usually win by picking my fights well. Remember that the campaign isn't going to be like these academy missions, if you want to retreat you can totally retreat. 

 

Edited by Jatzi
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A country like Italy can take on Britain by concentrating all of it's force in one area while Britain has an extensive empire to patrol. Tactics like commerce raiding and torpedo boat fleets will give smaller nations a fighting chance against huge fleets of battleships as well, and smaller nations could always find an ally to help against a bigger foe.

You could also start out by beating up smaller nations like Greece or the Ottomans before taking on the larger ones. That's how I would like to see the campaign anyways. It would be good if the campaign is less random than RTW, and the fact there are more nations will help a lot.

Ultimately each nation should play out uniquely, and some will be harder than other by their very nature. The US will start out small but grow exponentially, while AH will be a big challenge.

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Has ist been confirmed that there will be more/minor nations? Which ones?

Also, will we be able to grow our empire through conquest and eventually be able to take on e. g. Britain as AH or Italy on more ore less equal terms of power?

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25 minutes ago, fsp said:

Has ist been confirmed that there will be more/minor nations? Which ones?

Also, will we be able to grow our empire through conquest and eventually be able to take on e. g. Britain as AH or Italy on more ore less equal terms of power?

Minor nations Are described here: (https://www.dreadnoughts.ultimateadmiral.com/the-playing-modes)

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This is a great  write-up on the RTW campaign. 

Quote

One of the most important of those lessons is learning how to play the various nations in the game, each of which has its own set of strategic challenges and unique resources to meet those challenges. So, for the benefit of newbies, I thought I’d take a moment to summarize the strategic mindset you have to take when playing each of the game’s nations to lead that power to success.

I’m going to address these in order of generally difficulty, taking the easiest nations to play as first and working my way to the hardest ones down the line.

It's a fun little read and I hope to be making all of those same choices in Dreadnoughts. Crucially, reality was not balanced. 

The UK had a different budget, different fleet composition, different design philosophy and different capabilities than Austria-Hungary. That is rooted in so many historical, geographical, geopolitical and economic factors that any game in which Austria-Hungary starts out on a "balanced" (read as: even) footing as the UK for all intents and purposes does not take place on Earth. A maritime power with a globe-spanning empire, incredibly strong naval tradition, civilian seafaring tradition, economy based on maritime trade and the first power to industrialize is going to be incomparably more powerful than a central European land power with a short coastline, where the mission of the Navy is A) Protect the coast B ) Exist as a fleet-in-being and maybe fight the Italians, C) national prestige.

If you really want to get into it, you could make the argument that the nature of the Dual-Monarchy after the Compromise of 1867 meant that it could not have a naval administration as effective as the Admiralty, and the dual power structure would mean that any attempts to expand the Navy would be resisted by Hungary, which as a landlocked nation, would not see as naval expenditure as being in the national interest to the same (if any) extent. Beyond that, without going too far into the racial and national composition and tensions within the empire, the coastline, while important, is a long way from Vienna and not inhabited by Germans or Hungarians, which means the sea and naval power were peripheral. Finally, the process of recruitment, selection and training of a national navy is complex in a state where many, if not most, citizens have never seen the sea, and the military operates in six languages. 

I'm not saying the player should figure out how to recruit sailors from the Czech regions of the empire, or if ships should be crewed by a single nation, mixed crews separated by department (historically, many gun crews were Hungarian, for example) or if mandatory language instruction should be part of every sailor's training (and good luck politically deciding on an official language for the sea service!), rather that AH should have a harder time building the navy than the UK.

It made a difference that every British schoolboy knew English, grew up within sight of the sea and had been told stories of Trafalgar and the Glorious First of June from infancy. Ideally the player should be able to learn why, if they are historically inclined, but these differences matter in real concrete ways that should have real concrete implications in the game.

It is critical that difference be represented in the campaign, because if these factors are abstracted away in hopes of "balance" and the only difference between nations is start position, then you might as well be playing Chinese Chequers on a nautical themed board. 

Edited by DougToss
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It would be really disappointing if all of the nations were completely balanced with each other. At that point the only difference would be the flag you get on your ships. I do think that some historical balancing mechanics are appropriate. Britain should have strict requirements as far as defending her empire, meaning you need to spend a lot on smaller cruisers to patrol the world, and split your main fleet between the Atlantic and Mediterranean. Austria Hungary will be rather poor, but can concentrate her whole navy in the eastern Mediterranean to challenge Greece, Turkey, or the Russian Black Sea fleet. Ideally a good player would be able to score some early victories with those smaller powers, and grow their navy to take on Italy or France later in the campaign.

Just because you can't beat the UK at the beginning of the game doesn't mean the game wont be fun. The US in 1890 would get it's teeth kicked in fighting one of the bigger European powers, but you can certainly build up to win a war with Spain or one of the South American countries if they are included.

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