XML Suggestions and Modifications II

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XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby MrBenn on Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:39 pm

Following the closure of the previous XML Modifications and Variations thread which was indexed a while ago in this thread

Rather than reopening that thread, I've decided to start this new one. There is no guarantee that any of the ideas will be implemented, but there's no reason not to talk about the changes we'd like to see: So if you'd like to suggest a new revolutionizing idea, by all means go ahead and fill out the form! Please, only well thought out ideas, and 1 idea per post, and follow the format below. Thanks!

===
========
===============

Suggestion Idea: <Concise Name>

Description: <What exactly the idea is and how it modifies gameplay, please use details>

Why It Should Be Considered: <What's your pitch, what are the benefits from this variation>

================
========
===

Before making a suggestion, please make sure it isn't already a current xml feature: viewtopic.php?t=23382
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby MrBenn on Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:39 pm

One of the reasons for starting a new thread, was that I spent a long time reading through the old ones, before forwarding the best of the suggestions to lackattack.

I'll copy those here for reference - none of these features are currently available, and there is no guarantee that any of these will be implemented. The example XML that has been cited is for reference only, and is only there to give an indication for possible implementation of the suggestion. It should not be confused with anything that is currently available.

MrBenn wrote:Conditional Autodeploys
The tag for autodeploy is currently a <bonus> tag within the <territory> collection. It would make more sense (and add more versatility) to add a conditional autodeploy to the <continent> collection.

Code: Select all
<continent>
   <name>Oceania</name>
   <bonus>0</bonus>
   <components>
      <territory>Indonesia</territory>
      <territory>New Guinea</territory>
      <territory>Western Australia</territory>
      <territory>Eastern Australia</territory>
   </components>
   <autodeploy=”2”>Indonesia</autodeploy>
   <autodeploy=”-1”>Eastern Australia</autodeploy>
</continent>





Killer Neutral Tweak
**NOTE: There is a known bug when players are eliminated by a killer neutral – it may be worth resolving this!

There have been requests to update the killer neutral code to allow for the neutral to respawn/reset to a different value.

Description: At the moment you can have
<neutral>2</neutral>
or
<neutral killer="yes">5</neutral>

The Maze Craze map requires this to be tweaked slightly... could we change to?
<neutral killer="5">2</neutral>
So the neutral initialises with 2 but when captured it returns to 5.

Alternatively add a separate <neutral reset> tag, which could be used with the neutral killer, or proposed decay?

Decay to Neutral
Negative autodeploy currently stops when a territory has a single army on it. With killer neutrals, a precedent has been set for territories to revert to neutral, and so it would be logical to extend the behaviour of decaying territories. However, in order to maintain backwards-compatibility, I would suggest the addition of a <decay> tag:

Code: Select all
<territory>
   <name>No Mans Land</name>
   <borders>
      <border>Dalhart</border>
      <border>Clayton</border>
      <border>Boise City</border>
   </borders>
   <coordinates>
      <smallx>90</smallx>
      <smally>90</smally>
      <largex>200</largex>
      <largey>111</largey>
   </coordinates>
   <bonus>-1</bonus>
</territory>

<territory>
   <name>No Mans Land</name>
   <borders>
      <border>Dalhart</border>
      <border>Clayton</border>
      <border>Boise City</border>
   </borders>
   <coordinates>
      <smallx>90</smallx>
      <smally>90</smally>
      <largex>200</largex>
      <largey>111</largey>
   </coordinates>
   <decay>1</decay>
</territory>


Conditional Borders
Previously (and frequently) referred to as Dynamic Borders, conditional borders have been mentioned a number of times under various guises. Their addition would open up Conquer Club to a whole new level of strategy, and further differentiate from the well-known Hasbro clone ;-)
Previous suggestions have incorporated multiple map images, although this could initially be done within a single static image: a 'green key territory' could be used to open attack routes through 'green doors'... hold a ladder/rope to climb/descend... etc. etc.
The below example is an idea of how it could be implemented - continents have been included for versatility.

Code: Select all
   <territory>
      <name>Door</name>
      <borders>
         <border>Hallway</border>
         <conditionalborder>
            <required territory>Key</required territory>
            <required continent>Guardhouse</required continent>
            <border>Drawbridge</border>
            <bombardment>Moat</bombardment>
         </conditionalborder>
      </borders>
   </territory>


Permanent Visibles
There have been murmurs of approval for some sort of sentry/scout/lookout post territories for use in foggy games – territories that can see through the fog, without the ability to attack.
Note: Visibles could theoretically be included in conditional borders (above)

Code: Select all
   <territory>
      <name>Lookout Post</name>
      <borders>
         <border>Inner Wall</border>
         <border>Outer Wall</border>
         <visible>Over The Hill</visible>
         <visible>Far Away</visible>
   </territory>


Perma-fog
The antithesis to the lookout post/permanent visibles, would be permanent fog (for non-adjacent territories)
Code: Select all
<territory>
   <name>No Mans Land</name>
   <borders>
      <border>Dalhart</border>
      <border>Clayton</border>
      <border>Boise City</border>
   </borders>
   <coordinates>
      <smallx>90</smallx>
      <smally>90</smally>
      <largex>200</largex>
      <largey>111</largey>
   </coordinates>
   <bonus>-1</bonus>
   <permafog>True</permafog>
</territory>


Grouped Starting Positions
If there was any way of assigning starting positions to teams, then that would be a very welcome addition. Rather than specifiying positions for particular players, is there any way that the starting positions could be grouped so that groups of positions will be given to the same team… The maximum number of teams in a game is 4 (4x doubles), so perhaps <group> tags could be added each position – and then each player will be assigned positions corresponding with their teammates – but you could keep it randomised so that team 1 would not necessarily be allocated group 1...
If there are more teams than groups, then the start positions should be ignored. Equally, if there are less teams than groups, then each team could be given two positions (ie if there are 4 coded groups in a quads game, then Team 1 (red, green, blue, yellow) would receive two groups, with team 2 receiving the other.

Code: Select all
<positions>
   <position>
      <territory>Britain</territory>
      <group>1</group>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>France</territory>
      <group>1</group>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Holland</territory>
      <group>1</group>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Spain</territory>
      <group>1</group>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Portugal</territory>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Inuit Homeland</territory>
      <group>2</group>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Comanche Homeland</territory>
      <group>2</group>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Aztec Homeland</territory>
      <group>2</group>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Mapuche Homeland</territory>
      <group>2</group>
   </position>
</positions>


Default Starting Position
It would be nice if you could select a single starting position that would always be allocated – ie. In a Humans v Aliens map, with 7 different species of alien, you could ensure that somebody would represent Humans in every game…
Code: Select all
<positions>
   <position>
      <territory>Humans</territory>
      <default>True</team>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Ewoks</territory>
   </position>
   <position>
      <territory>Vulcans</territory>
   </position>
</positions>


Objectives Tweak
Amend objectives to include <continent> tags as well as <territory> tags. This would allow for more flexibility of objectives (such as “Control 60% of the board.”)

Starting Bonus Override/Delay
One of the things that we have become semi-obsessional over with maps, is to reduce the probability of the first player receiving (large) bonuses. In order to help mitigate the luck of the drop – and to try and add more balance to the game, it would be nice to be able to specify bonuses to be ignored during round 1 (or possibly to be reshuffled in the same way as when an objective is held on the drop)

Code: Select all
<?xml version="1.0"?>
<map>
   <title>Classic</title>
   <smallwidth>600</smallwidth>
   <smallheight>325</smallheight>
   <largewidth>800</largewidth>
   <largeheight>433</largeheight>
   <filetype>jpg</filetype>

   <delaybonus>
      <continent>South America</continent>
      <continent>Oceania</continent>
   </delaybonus>
 


Game Start Message
Just a simple xml tag to define a message posted to chat or the game log at the start of every game on that map.

Mostly for storytelling or "setting the mood"

Would need standards set - under x number of characters, yes/no to "map created by", "Beware the prison of Alcatraz for you shall never escape it" is a gameplay tip but in character so to speak where "Alcatraz has no outward borders" is just an explanation - which, if either is acceptable, etc etc etc.

Code: Select all
<?xml version="1.0"?>
<map>
   <title>Classic</title>
   <smallwidth>600</smallwidth>
   <smallheight>325</smallheight>
   <largewidth>800</largewidth>
   <largeheight>433</largeheight>
   <filetype>jpg</filetype>

   <startmessage>”"Beware the prison of Alcatraz for you shall never escape it."</startmessage>

</map>
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby MrBenn on Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:39 pm

<reserved>
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby Industrial Helix on Tue Dec 15, 2009 7:46 pm

Yeah, I've got two for you. Here's the first.

Suggestion Idea: Reverting Territories

Description: Territory reverts to a set number, but remains in a players control.

Why It Should Be Considered: Territories will have more functions. A territory can then act like something other than a landmass, for example. If I was making an artillery map I could have each artillery piece auto deploy +100 per round. The troops act as shells rather than armies and the 100 represents the amount of shells that can be fired. However, we want other players to have the ability to capture the artillery gun so at the end of a players round, it reverts to 10 men so that during the other player's turn it is assailable.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby Industrial Helix on Tue Dec 15, 2009 7:56 pm

Suggestion Idea: Troop cap

Description: Limits the number of troops a territory can hold.

Why It Should Be Considered: Adds a lot of options to scenario maps and has the potential to add new dynamic to territories. It would also introduce new strategies to games. Territories would have more of a unique use and could act more like the things they represented. For example, if there was a castle then you wouldn't be able to fit more than 40 men in it, accurately reflecting its storage capacity. Belgium can't hold more than 20 troops, Germany can't hold more than 80. On a map with a bridge that can be occupied, for example castlelands, a bridge can't hold more than 10 men at a time meaning you better secure your way across or not attempt.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby captainwalrus on Tue Dec 15, 2009 8:01 pm

Industrial Helix wrote:Suggestion Idea: Troop cap

Description: Limits the number of troops a territory can hold.

Why It Should Be Considered: Adds a lot of options to scenario maps and has the potential to add new dynamic to territories. It would also introduce new strategies to games. Territories would have more of a unique use and could act more like the things they represented. For example, if there was a castle then you wouldn't be able to fit more than 40 men in it, accurately reflecting its storage capacity. Belgium can't hold more than 20 troops, Germany can't hold more than 80. On a map with a bridge that can be occupied, for example castlelands, a bridge can't hold more than 10 men at a time meaning you better secure your way across or not attempt.

That would be hard for reinforcements. You wouldn't be able to move lots of troops though at once.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby Industrial Helix on Tue Dec 15, 2009 8:10 pm

captainwalrus wrote:That would be hard for reinforcements. You wouldn't be able to move lots of troops though at once.


That's the point though. You'd have to consider more carefully what route you're going to use to attack and how you're going to pull it off without running past your lines of supply.

Though this would be most difficult to use with adjacent reinforcements, with unlimited or chain I assume they would be able to move 80 troops from Germany to spain through france even if france has a cap of 50 troops because it would be Spain which is holding the men, not france.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby the.killing.44 on Tue Dec 15, 2009 8:20 pm

Code: Select all
      B
  /      \
A --  C -- E
  \      /
      D

A has 30 units on it; E has no limit. B, C, and D all have a cap of 10 units. We can bring 30 units from A to E, right?
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby Industrial Helix on Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:41 pm

the.killing.44 wrote:
Code: Select all
      B
  /      \
A --  C -- E
  \      /
      D

A has 30 units on it; E has no limit. B, C, and D all have a cap of 10 units. We can bring 30 units from A to E, right?


Theoretically, under unlimited, yeah. It's just moving 10 to C and then to E and repeating the process. So under unlimited reinforcements they can move.

Under chained... I don't know how it would play out because I don't entirely understand how reinforcing works on CC. I think, following the rule that territory C cannot hold more then 10, then no more than 10 could pass from A to E if you get only one move.

Adjacent... no more than 10.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby captainwalrus on Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:44 pm

the.killing.44 wrote:
Code: Select all
      B
  /      \
A --  C -- E
  \      /
      D

A has 30 units on it; E has no limit. B, C, and D all have a cap of 10 units. We can bring 30 units from A to E, right?

I question why it was necessary to add B and D.

Also, it should work in both chained and unlimited, I think.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby cairnswk on Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:47 pm

Nice work MrBenn, thanks for re-instating that. :)
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby Evil DIMwit on Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:52 pm

Suggestion Idea: Losing Conditions

Description: They're like winning conditions, but the other way. A set of territories and/or continents such that if you don't own a single one of them, you're eliminated from the game and the rest of your territories revert to neutral.

Why It Should Be Considered: Allows for myriad game possibilities: Perhaps players have capitals that they need to hold onto in order to stay in the game. Or perhaps there is a central playing area and external territories, and if any player is eliminated from the center they're eliminated from the game. Furthermore, certain maps exist such that if you are relegated to a certain set of territories (particularly, ones that are bombard-out-only), you can no longer win at any case. A losing condition can allow a player to leave such a game immediately, freeing them from the unwinnable scenario and eliminating vengeful kingmakers.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby captainwalrus on Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:55 pm

Evil DIMwit wrote:Suggestion Idea: Losing Conditions

Description: They're like winning conditions, but the other way. A set of territories and/or continents such that if you don't own a single one of them, you're eliminated from the game and the rest of your territories revert to neutral.

Why It Should Be Considered: Allows for myriad game possibilities: Perhaps players have capitals that they need to hold onto in order to stay in the game. Or perhaps there is a central playing area and external territories, and if any player is eliminated from the center they're eliminated from the game. Furthermore, certain maps exist such that if you are relegated to a certain set of territories (particularly, ones that are bombard-out-only), you can no longer win at any case. A losing condition can allow a player to leave such a game immediately, freeing them from the unwinnable scenario and eliminating vengeful kingmakers.

oooh. I like it! It would really help in situations where no one can win, which are no fun.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby The Neon Peon on Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:12 pm

I have just one thing to suggest:

Suggestion Idea: If... Then statements

Description: Allow everything in the xml to be placed in an if...then statement: territories, borders, victory conditions, bonuses, autodeploys, etc.

Why It Should Be Considered: Anything can be done with if..then statements.

Sorry about writing so little. My 'e' key is broken, so I am having to use copy and paste, which is very tedious. But I think most people can figure out for themselves what can be done with them... conditional borders and autodeploys were two that were already mentioned.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby chipv on Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:12 pm

Suggestion Idea: Dice Bonus

Description:
Add a <dice> tag to XML with a single number (positive or negative) for adjusting dice rolls.
Can also have 2 attributes(or separate tags) for separate adjustments of attack / defence rolls.

Game engine takes this into account when working out who won the assault.

Why It Should Be Considered:
Mapmakers can adjust strength or weakness of specific territories allowing more realistic simulation of battles.
(e.g. a territory that was heavily fortified in real life can have a +1 to defence rolls. A tank could have +1 to attack rolls etc)

Currently a territory representing a tank is equally as likely to defeat a territory as infantry.

This would allow mapmakers to fine tune the map so that attacks are a realistic depiction of a battle.
There are also a multitude of new map scenarios possible using this tag.

Examples

This gives the territory +3 on attack rolls:

Code: Select all
<territory>
<name>Catapult</name>
...
<dice type="Attack">3</dice>
</territory>


This gives the territory -3 on defence rolls

Code: Select all
<territory>
<name>Easy Target</name>
...
<dice type="Defence">-3</dice>
</territory>
Last edited by chipv on Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby cairnswk on Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:13 pm

^^ Goodness, if that was around we wouldn't have had to rework Das Schloss...well maybe not ;)
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby MeanestBossEver on Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:43 am

chipv wrote:Suggestion Idea: Dice Bonus

Description:
Add a <dice> tag to XML with a single number (positive or negative) for adjusting dice rolls.
Can also have 2 attributes(or separate tags) for separate adjustments of attack / defence rolls.

[/code]


Love this idea. If practical, I'd like to see it further extended to be optionally directional. Maybe something like:
Code: Select all
<territory>
<name>Birds</name>
...
<dice type="Attack" to="Freshly Washed Car">1</dice>
<dice type="Defence" to="Shotgun">2</dice>
</territory>
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby Army of GOD on Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:44 am

Suggestion Idea: Random Bonus


Description: There are maps that have continents and territories that give out assured gains and losses. A random one will add more pizazzto every war. The mapmaker can make it so that a certain continent can gain/lose a bonus of -1 to 3 units or 0-5 or whatever s(he) feels like, instead of forcing "you will definitely receive x many if you hold this, no ifs ands or buts" (BORING! [-( )

Why It Should Be Considered: Complete reinforcements in real war are never assured and things such as war-time disease and "accidents" exist all the time. Adding this feature and allowing us to use it will give map-makers another key tool when drawing and planning out maps.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby captainwalrus on Wed Dec 16, 2009 6:55 am

Army of GOD wrote:Suggestion Idea: Random Bonus


Description: There are maps that have continents and territories that give out assured gains and losses. A random one will add more pizazzto every war. The mapmaker can make it so that a certain continent can gain/lose a bonus of -1 to 3 units or 0-5 or whatever s(he) feels like, instead of forcing "you will definitely receive x many if you hold this, no ifs ands or buts" (BORING! [-( )

Why It Should Be Considered: Complete reinforcements in real war are never assured and things such as war-time disease and "accidents" exist all the time. Adding this feature and allowing us to use it will give map-makers another key tool when drawing and planning out maps.

That would increase the amount of the game that is luck based though. If the bonus was the same for the whole game, but different from game to game, that would be good, but different each turn, meh, not so much.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby the.killing.44 on Wed Dec 16, 2009 8:23 am

I personally won't play any map with a dice adjustment. Terrible idea that ruins the integrity of R*sk.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby captainwalrus on Wed Dec 16, 2009 8:22 pm

the.killing.44 wrote:I personally won't play any map with a dice adjustment. Terrible idea that ruins the integrity of R*sk.

Seconded!
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby ender516 on Fri Dec 18, 2009 12:08 pm

captainwalrus wrote:
the.killing.44 wrote:I personally won't play any map with a dice adjustment. Terrible idea that ruins the integrity of R*sk.

Seconded!

I hope you two have already read the Dice Bonus/Adjustment topic. I think it makes some good points for interesting game play that could be introduced with a change like this.

And, really, don't most of the innovations at this site "ruin the integrity of R*sk"? Starting positions, killer neutrals, fog of war, ... How many of these are in the basic board game?
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby ender516 on Fri Dec 18, 2009 12:36 pm

Suggestion Idea: Continental Reinforcements

Description: The <reinforcements/> tag would be made available within the <continent/> tag, thus simplifying the XML when a bonus structure like "Hold 4 for +2, 6 for +3, 8 for +4" is desired. The game log could state "ender516 received 3 troops for holding 7 regions in Blue Nitrogens".

Why It Should Be Considered: Some maps have enormous XML files in order to simulate this via multiple continents with bonuses and overrides and whatnot. Smaller, more understandable XML files are certainly to be desired: easier to create, easier to update and maintain.
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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby yeti_c on Sat Dec 19, 2009 7:53 am

R*sk - has these rules already... the LOTR risk had rules like this.

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Re: XML Suggestions and Modifications II

Postby zimmah on Sat Dec 19, 2009 9:44 am

ender516 wrote:Suggestion Idea: Continental Reinforcements

Description: The <reinforcements/> tag would be made available within the <continent/> tag, thus simplifying the XML when a bonus structure like "Hold 4 for +2, 6 for +3, 8 for +4" is desired. The game log could state "ender516 received 3 troops for holding 7 regions in Blue Nitrogens".

Why It Should Be Considered: Some maps have enormous XML files in order to simulate this via multiple continents with bonuses and overrides and whatnot. Smaller, more understandable XML files are certainly to be desired: easier to create, easier to update and maintain.



this is allready possible (but it would be good if the XML could be smaller for that purpose, but still, there are in my opinion updates that should take place before updating this, because this is not really opening up new gameplay options
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