[Vacation - valid untill July 2014] Central Asia 2020

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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby natty dread on Thu Aug 05, 2010 6:46 pm

Raskholnikov wrote:How about: Central Asia 2020: Struggle for Oil?

This has the added value of making it clear it's a future oriented game.

(NB you can see from my signature it is my favorite too... lol)


Works for me :)
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby Raskholnikov on Thu Aug 05, 2010 6:53 pm

Yey. Hope Helix and Evil will like it too.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby Backside on Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:10 pm

Well... i didn't rly have to watch this map too long to see what's wrong. there is actually a reason y all games with set up positions with +x auto-deploy have distance to each others and/or big neutrals between (just checking all those out and comparing to this one, u'll see exactly what i mean ^^).

Since how it is, there i only one way to go at beginning and that's attacking neighbouring Capital at first round or soon at one of the first rounds. That will seriously mess up the game-play in most of formats. (just for example: 9(8)v4,3=57%, 9(8)v5,3=48% or even 4,1 and 1,4 which are 39%. Kiev-Moscow being obviously biggest setup) or if in like Ar Riyad u'd just farm those 1 stacks as it's most profitable (spoils/n-s) etc. regardless my point is that this is just way too simplistic and straight forward with strategy and start luck has way too big part.

Even if u intend that it'll be that way, it just won't work since it'll just ruin all other game play on the map and makes it all down to start luck (play order, drop and luck). Current format will just kill usage of all the area and make all bonuses and oil mastery (well that's obviously hard/ almost impossible in all other maps too) and other stuff going on this map useless.

So u need to make bigger gaps/neutrals or make them harder to access (starting points) or like making it so that there is no regular bonuses (so only bonuses in map count) wud propably save u from too big changes (since u wud not give +3+3 more compared to neighbouring capital which acts sooner). Well even so it wud propably still be or be even more un balanced between 4 stacked and 1 stacked nations/regions. U cud only take that min.+3 and keep other bonuses based on region count, that could do a trick too. Also one thing that came to mind that neighbouring nations territories would not border each other, but u'd need to go through one place to get across that line (like customs or what ever those were called).

Well yeah was just throwing some ideas to help u towards getting this more playable and changing the map ^^

Didn't rly form solid idea (if it's good or bad/ right or wrong) about 6th Fleet. I mean it rly makes biggest differ against aggressive noobs when it can be very scary, but so does other places currently. Then there are situation in spoils games, but also if u bombard that place to get cards (however he ended up with only having that territory) neighbouring guy can easily take that neutral 1. Well anyways wasn't rly able to form solid opinion about it.

Btw dunno if i've said this before, but u and everyone can freely send me send me questions how different changes excatly affect to gameplay with optimal strategies or with different settings or any other way. Or what ever u want to ask (that didn't mean that i want 10 PMs/h xD. what it ment was, if u have sumttin that is troubling u quite a bit and u can't decide (/it just won't click in ur brain at that moment), i can or at least will try help best i can). I'm not rly kind of guy who likes to read through forums and all posts (since i have relatively short temper when it's not about winning/problem solving/making money ^^), but I'm more than happy to give advices if u have questions. Propably not best idea to put it under one map's developement, but anyhows :P

PS. sorry if i missed some rules u made during thread and made useless or known points cos of that.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby natty dread on Thu Aug 12, 2010 2:51 am

Backside makes a good point.

Moskow-Kiev, Ar-Riyad-Teheran, New Delhi-Islamabad, New Delhi-Beijing... That's 7 starting positions out of 8 having good chances for a 1st round elimination.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby Raskholnikov on Thu Aug 12, 2010 5:36 am

We'll need to adjust the neutrals levels between them.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby natty dread on Thu Aug 12, 2010 6:01 am

I'd say you'd need at least 10 neutrals between each capital.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby Raskholnikov on Thu Aug 12, 2010 6:55 pm

10 is a lot; don;t you think 8 will do - esp if we raise the starting points troop number to 4? That means a 10 troop starting point has 9 armies to kill 8 neutrals plus 4 already deployed troops on the other starting point. a 9 v. 12 is not good odds, esp since even a miss by 1 will lead inevitably to one's own elimination....
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby natty dread on Thu Aug 12, 2010 7:08 pm

Raskholnikov wrote:10 is a lot; don;t you think 8 will do - esp if we raise the starting points troop number to 4? That means a 10 troop starting point has 9 armies to kill 8 neutrals plus 4 already deployed troops on the other starting point. a 9 v. 12 is not good odds, esp since even a miss by 1 will lead inevitably to one's own elimination....


10 vs 12 is not uncommon to win. 10 vs 14 would be better IMHO. It gives a better buffer, preventing the game from degenerating into a bloody dice war...
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby Raskholnikov on Thu Aug 12, 2010 7:34 pm

ok will plan accordingly.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby MarshalNey on Sat Aug 21, 2010 4:41 pm

Sorry to take so long to give this a review... it's actually a day overdue 8-[

Well, let me start with what I like. I call it this section-
WHAT I LIKE
1) Variety. I like the variety of bonuses and hazards, and the thematic elements as well- terrorism, nationalism and the competition for oil resources.
2) Political Theme. This map deals with our current reality with a mature political lens.
3) Multiple Avenues. I like the dual victory objective (although one of them is far easier- see my concerns) and the multiple ways to attack each other, through terrorists or fleets, by land or by sea.

MY CONCERNS
Again I apologize for the delay in the fortnightly critique. However, part of the trouble I had in writing a review was that I'm not getting a good feel of the gameplay flow; I understand all of the parts in the legend individually, but as a whole it doesn't "click". Perhaps it's because there seem to be antagonistic gameplay elements at work here, so I can't get a good sense of what you're trying to accomplish. For instance:

1) A Large Map That Seems Cramped. It's a rather large conquest map, yet the starting positions are insanely close to each other (I know that you've recently had a discussion about this, but I have reservations about the 'solution'- see point 3 below) and can bombard each other through a killer neutral 3.
2) Oil Is Icky. The theme is supposed to center around oil, but in fact they are the least attractive bonuses on the map. They produce fewer troops for the number of regions held, in addition to rather significant negatives in taking and holding them- the teleporting terrorists in the case of refineries and the killer neutral seas in the case of tankers.
3) Not Enough Gravy. You seem to want players to try to go out and construct empires, yet there's not a lot of umph provided at the start when compared with the relatively high average neutral values out there. This could make for frustrating times where the dice play an even more significant role than usual.
4) Terrorists Trump Oil Fields. The Victory Objective seems to offer two possibilities, yet only one of them looks realistic- the terrorists.
5) Revolts... Yawn. There are 'civil unrest' regions that are clearly meant to factor into the gameplay, yet they are completely avoidable due to the apparent lack of impassibles or continent bonuses.

The map's clarity is also a bit of an issue when analyzing the gameplay, but I think I understand the elements well enough so that can wait. For now, my biggest concerns lie with the starting points and the large amount of 'inert' or even 'conflicting' gameplay elements.

My advice is to ask yourselves what are the essential gameplay mechanics, and go from there. For instance, does this map absolutely need to be a conquest map? If the answer if 'yes' (and you have a good reason why it's yes), then that's a start. If the answer is 'no, but it'd be really nice', well then you know it's not an essential mechanic. Once I have an idea of what you see as being essential, then I can give further recommendations.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0 - Struggle for Oil

Postby Evil DIMwit on Mon Oct 18, 2010 12:36 pm

[Moved]

It would appear that development of this map has stalled. If the mapmaker wants to continue with the map, then one of the Foundry Moderators will be able to help put the thread back into the Foundry system, after an update has been made.
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0-Struggle for Oil - UPDA

Postby pamoa on Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:19 am

- VERSION 3 - Updated 6 January 2011

Design Brief

Map Size: 89 territories - 37 neutral; 52 to be distributed from the start.

Your aims/design style: The map looks like a computer-generated briefing map for government officials. Accurate borders and teritories, with accurate location of key targets: refineries, tankers, fleets, terrorist locations, civil unrest provinces.
Uniqueness: There is no other map currently in CC covering this area specifically. Nor is there another map dealing with the issue of oil supplies, transit and geopolitical rivalries connected with oil. Given the current events in Eastern Europe (Russian manipulation of gas supplies), Middle East (Iran sanctions), Afghanistan / Pakistan (fill in blank), and Kyrghizystan (ethnic unrest), not to speak of the Caucasus, coupled with global concerns about the effects of oil dependence on our economies and environment, this seems a very timeply topic. Anyone who loves large maps with a variety of bonus and target options and who are interested in real-life, current events will be eager to play.

Style of play: Four large countries (10 territories). Four small countries (6 territories). 1 large neutral country with 10 territories (Kazakstan) and two smaller regions (Caucasus and Central Asia). 3 Neutral territories (Cashmir, Arunchal and Ulan Baatar); 3 sea territories, 2 neutral US Fleets.

(as usual: +1 for every 3 territories anywhere). +2 for every 3 refineries (24 in all), +3 for every 4 tankers (18 in all). -2 on all civil unrest territories. See map draft for further details, including Winning Conditions. Note: refinery and tankers bonuses triggered only if one holds a capital - no lucky drops at the start!

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ALTERNATE VERSION

Same map, but capitals, revolts and terrorists are distributed as territories from the start, with capitals starting with 6 armies each, while metropolis cities are all neutral 4 at the start and tanker and refinery bonuses do not depend on holding a capital first.

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NOTE: Please compare the two and provide feedback as to which version and game play you think is better and should be taken forward. Thanks!!
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0-Struggle for Oil - UPDA

Postby MarshalNey on Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:30 am

Thank you Rask, pamoa & ender for addressing all of my concerns comprehensively and keeping this map alive. I did not anticipate such a sweeping update. Wow =D>

With the conquest map style replaced and the continent bonuses added, the Revolt regions are now very relevant and all of the problems with high neutrals or quick player-kills are gone. Oil is a significant bonus to grab early, too, and will feature late game as terrorists can break continent bonuses through refinery attacks. The US fleets have a more tangible and limited role and I especially like how any national capital can get US aid in fighting "terrorism"- in perfect tandem with the American policy of acting as a global peacekeeper (or busybody, depending on one's perspective).

In short, all conceptual problems with the gameplay are fixed. :)

Now, as for the actual balance of the gameplay- the number-crunching side- I'll perhaps need some time, as this map is quite complex. However, I can say that I favor the 1st map over the Alternate Version for two reasons. First, and most importantly, I think that the first map encourages some 'empire-building' decisions by requiring the players to pursue one or more of a variety of advantages (terrorists, capitals, metros, oil), rather than having the bonuses randomly distributed at the start. Second, putting a victory objective (terrorists and capitals) as part of the drop is always at risk of handing the game to a player at the start- this can of course be remedied but it's an added concern in an already complex gameplay balance.

Still, if you or others like the Alternate version it is by no means unworkable... it will just be more work.

Finally, just to let you know the graphics will need to become less busy-looking at some point- there are a lot of bright icons that fight for attention and a lot of white letters and borders. That's not a gameplay critique, but I thought I'd give you a heads-up since you've passed the biggest hurdle as far as the gameplay goes.

Again, great update.

Marshal Ney
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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0-Struggle for Oil - UPDA

Postby Raskholnikov on Fri Jan 07, 2011 6:23 pm

Thanks for the encouraging comments. As you noted, we did take your constructive criticism on board and made some tough choices. In particular, we rejected the idea of having high-neutral territories, and this forced us to move from the conquest model to the classical model. Once this key decision was made. the rest fell in place. Needless to say, pamoa did the hardest work by reqorking the map and bringing out a completely reworked new version. In addition, he came up with the idea of giving each US fleet a limited range of attack and represented it brilliantly by means of the blue half-circles, which I think makes the map even more realistic and closer to Situation Room maps that may be found in Army Command Centers.

I do agree with you that the first map has a better gameplay than the Alternate version for the very same reasons you mention; in addition, the tanker and refinery bonuses are only paid out if one controls a capital, which serves two purposes: first, we can distribute the refinery and tanker territories from the beginning without worrying about players getting additional bonuses from the start and thus gaining an unfair advantage; and secondly, players will have to gain a capital relatively soon and nurse it carefully at the risk of losing additional bonuses, which as you say is a good empire-building exercise. This function was tested in Napoleonic Europe with great success and I think it could work just as well here.

In terms of graphics, I think the map is quite balanced and do not really see the need for any significant changes. However, if you have specific points you want us to address, please let us know.

One last word regarding country bonuses. One feature we wanted to keep is the need to rush to the centre - Kazakhstan, Central Asia and the Caucasus, where a lot of the oil and tanker resources are located. As you noted, Kazakhstan is not an active country with a capital, since it is designed to be a battleground rather than a home country. However, we gave all these three areas, and in particular Kazakhstan, high country bonuses to ensure that no one will allow other players to hold them unchallenged - which will encourage exactly this idea of a rush to Central Asia/Kazakhstan/Caucasus to ensure to one gains control and gets the high country bonuses.

This is it for now. I'd like to address first all gameplay issues and resolve them to everyone's satisfaction in order to be able to move to the next stage relatively quickly (ie weeks rather than months). We spent a significant amount of time coming up with this new update and, as you say, comprehensively addressed all concerns raised, so hopefully we can work out the remaining issues relatively quickly. Once we move on to the next stage we'll be able to iron out the any outstanding graphics issues.

Thanks again for your interest in this project and for your very helpful comments.

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Re: Central Asia: The Great Game 2.0-Struggle for Oil - UPDA

Postby Commander9 on Fri Jan 07, 2011 8:39 pm

Thanks for the message and I'll try to make a constructive comment with what little time I have at this moment.

First thought when I opened the map was - "AAAH, TOO BRIGHT." I think something should be done with the colouration of the map as any time that I look to this, it hurts my eyes. Not sure how well this would go down with colour-blind people either. Also, some parts of the map look really too clustered (Iraq-Iran bordered looks especially clustered).

As far as gameplay goes, I would highly suggest to go with the 1st one. If all of the capitals and bonus areas would start non-neutral, the first player would have a rather big advantage against the others, which should be avoided, if possible. Napoleonic Empire had worked out all those areas really well and while there are still better and worse drops, it's overall one of the more fair and well developed maps in CC, as far as my opinion goes. Keeping this in mind, I'd highly suggest to go the same route - leave out the bonus areas as neutral, so that players would have to weight their options while choosing whether to go for the bonus or attack the other player.

Furthermore, I'd say this also represents real life better - Western Corporations (or any influence groups) started rather small and they have to fight for the more influential and powerful areas.

Another small thing that I have noticed is that map is highly complex with a lot of things happening at the same time. If that's what you were aiming for, great, but this could be a bit of turn off for a lot of people (Personally, I love highly complex maps). Hope this has been at least mildly helpful.
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