## United States of Apocalypse [Quenched]

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such a good idea

lilwdlnddude

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What if the bonus you got from contaminated countries was always multiplied by -1. So if you own 1 contanimated country, your bonus is 1*-1, which is -1. So you lose 1 troop.. If you own 2, its (1+1)*-1*-1, which is 2. So you gain 2 troops. If you own 3, its (1+1+1)*-1*-1*-1, which is -3. You lose three troops.

For the math-impared, you just want to make sure you own an even number of contaminated territories, because if you do you get a bonus of however many contaminated territories you have.
If you have an odd number, you get one guy taken off for each contaminated territory you own.

So if you own, you get a bonus of
1 ....................... -1
2 ....................... 2
3 ....................... -3
4 ....................... 4
5 ....................... -5
6 ....................... 6

This adds a new element, because now the risky players will be trying to hold an even amount to get their bonus, and the offensive-minded defensive players will be trying to knock out one of the contaminated to turn their potential bonus into a painful blow.
The only problem now is the unfortunate soul that starts out with 3 contaminated countries. They're pretty much dead from the start because they'll gain no new troops every time, and everyone else will know this and not attack their territories until they're dead.
I suggest perhaps making the contaminated territories neutral from the start. I think it would make for some interesting gameplay.

By the way, its looking pretty good. I like the binary, its a nice touch.
I'm only confused with the sequence, (assuming you did this on purpose), I'm seeing 0,1,2,4,5,6,15. I dont see a particular pattern, perhaps give it a fun pattern for anyone who spends the time to read the numbers?

Mr. K

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I don't know how that negative thing would go. Someone just reported a bug in which a guy was somehow deploying negative armies and it got all goofy and would give him like 13923095 troops. I guess you'd have to talk to lack about that.

Banana Stomper

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who/where did this happen?

Mr. K

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its in the bug reports forum, i believe

Banana Stomper

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Well lets see...

---I'm always pushing to for people to create new ideas and features for maps. It helps make them unique, and not 'just another map'. That said, I think the radioactive area could be quite amusing in game play. Obviously first one would have to check to see if it is actually possible to have such a thing for a map. And if it is, the values would have to be reworked into something that necessarily wouldn't cripple the players or give them an extreme bonus. Also perhaps adding a black border around the radiation symbol, just to distinguish it from blending into yellow and some of the other lighter continents.

---Perhaps darker and foreboding colors should be looked into. Right now this map doesn't feel like the apocalypse. It feels kind of like the day before it. Bright, sunny, little care what so ever running through the mind's of the people.

---As someone else suggested, look for more play with area names. I've been hoping for some more 'futuristic' or 'Final Blackout' kind of maps. I think manipulating them could be quite hilarious and add a new element to the map. Two quick problems I see right away. Some areas in 'Old Newland' and Corn Country have names that are hard to read. Thrown in California and 'Silicon Overmind' also. Readability is tough issue right now. And focusing specifically on 'Silicon Overmind', I think the numbers in front of the names could hamper people who don't read so closely in the attack and fortification drop down menus. Perhaps if you put the numbers behind the 'word', you could still keep a general uniqueness but not have to worry about people complaining that they didn't want to deploy on 0001 but rather on 0000 or something similar.

---Obviously the water will be worked on and touched up, and you mentioned the legends also. To perhaps go with your theme, I suggest a dark legend, something perhaps ominous Maybe a border outline similar to the barb wire, or something that could help improve the visuals.

---Also I think you could do something more interesting in the 4 corner's region, instead of simply adding a manmade lake. What to add to that area, I am not sure. Maybe a garbage dump? Or an ammunition depot? Who knows. But I think something unique could be used in that area.

Hopefully I'll be back around to look closer at the countries, borders, and bonuses at another time.

--Andy

AndyDufresne

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The progression for the penalties and bonuses is a direct consequence of how the XML works. The formula looks something like this:
Code: Select all
`B*choose(N, S) - P*N`

B is the bonus for holding a set, N is how many affected countries you own, S is how many you need for a set, and P is the penalty per country. "Choose" is the combinatoric function "N choose S". I can change the parameters (B, S, and P) but have no real control over the formula (or over who starts out with each country, neutral or otherwise). I checked with Lack before developing this, and he says that it shouldn't break anything as long as I'm careful.

Based on the comments that people have made, I think I'm going to go with B=2, P=2, S=2. That should be fairer than the first version, since starting with either one or two of them will give you the same deployment modifier, which means most players should be on the same initial footing.

As for darkness, I'm going for more of a black-humor feel than a genuinely dark feel -- sort of a post-apocalyptic "return to normalcy" kind of thing. Except with robots, mutants, zombies, and (of course) war on a massive scale. I'm working on adding some artwork that should help a lot with the feel; we'll see if that helps when I put up a new version.

Jota

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[url=http://grunk.org/risk/usa7-large.jpg]
(Click to enlarge.)[/url]

I've increased the ratio of joke-to-real state names, added backgrounds to a few continents, and made some other cosmetic adjustments. I also changed the penalties/bonuses for radiation like I described above, so the progression should go -2/-2/0/4/10/18. (I also upped all the continent bonuses appropriately.) As for fonts, Silicon Overmind, Aquaria (nee California) and Corn Country have been revised slightly.

Jota

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Banana Stomper wrote:I don't know how that negative thing would go. Someone just reported a bug in which a guy was somehow deploying negative armies and it got all goofy and would give him like 13923095 troops. I guess you'd have to talk to lack about that.

Overflows are fun! Though I didn't know php supported unsigned ints.

But perhaps there should be a floor on the number of troops deployed, never less than three?

agarvin

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Yeah, I am still slightly worried about the whole only being able to deploy 1 man thing... not a lot you can do with 1 man.
Frigidus wrote:but now that it's become relatively popular it's suffered the usual downturn in coolness.

qeee1

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I'm definetly liking the new changes. Although....

I think it might be better to be able to see the individual countries within the silicon overmind to make it a little easier reading, although I like how they look overall.

Voodoo Bayou is a little too hard to find the borders especially in the Arkansas/Graceland area, maybe lighten the border or background color?
Last edited by kingwaffles on Sun May 21, 2006 11:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

kingwaffles

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Hey Jota, I like the new names...especially Pennsylvania. Where'd you come up with that one?

Maybe change SoCal to LowCal?

I can't see the borders between the robot states at all - I liked the steel panelling look better. Though I can read them now when I enlarge.

Also, my usual whine about it being too dark...

I can't tell what that thing at 4 corners is supposed to be.
Last edited by rocksolid on Sun May 21, 2006 11:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

rocksolid

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Personally I like the black look for the Overmind, it just needs some more visible borders.

kingwaffles

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qeee1 wrote:Yeah, I am still slightly worried about the whole only being able to deploy 1 man thing... not a lot you can do with 1 man.

Totally agreed. On the other hand, if a guy starts with 2 already, he will get 5? I cant agree. I believe the penalty should be 1, no bonus for 2, little bonus for 3, or the game can be decided by the initial spread (I know, sometimes it happens already, but it will be more frequent here).

Another thing: if a player have 3 contamined countries, he in fact will have 3 doubles of countries, so it will give him a great bonus. With 4 countries, he will have 4 triples and 6 doubles... How will you control that? Are you thinking about this?

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The Silicon Overmind's fonts look much better on the darker background, but the borders will be hard to distinguish... Maybe you could drop a transparancy of a motherboard or something over it.

LowCal... lol.

What is the transparency on Corn Country? An evil corn? I think he's got the evil eye!

thegrimsleeper

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Yes its a very interesting idea

Hoff

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qeee1 wrote:Yeah, I am still slightly worried about the whole only being able to deploy 1 man thing... not a lot you can do with 1 man.

Mmm. Optimally, it'd be nice if every player could get an extra +2 deployment for free every turn when playing this map, regardless of their holdings. But that's beyond what I can do in XML. I could try a -1 penalty for each one and a +1 bonus per pair. That would give -1/-1/0/+2/+5/+9. It would mean you'd always get at least two armies to deploy, but +5 seems like a low bonus for holding five totally disconnected countries.

Marvaddin wrote:Another thing: if a player have 3 contamined countries, he in fact will have 3 doubles of countries, so it will give him a great bonus.

I'm not sure if you might be doing the math differently from me. If you have three contaminated countries, you will have three doubles, but you'll still have the three contaminated countries, so they'll cancel out to 0. Also, if I count doubles, I won't be counting triples (and vice versa).

So is the font change in Corn Country and Aquaria any significant improvement? Also, is it obvious that Brigham/WYMG-0110, Colorado/Nebraska, and Dustbowl/Missouri are borders, or do I need to make those clearer?

Jota

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if this is the U.S. in the future, where's the rest of the world?
If common sense was so common, wouldn't everyone have it?
The one thing we have learned from history is that we don't learn from history.
Willgfass

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Willgfass wrote:if this is the U.S. in the future, where's the rest of the world?

Still on fire and not able to be quabbled over no doubt.
Initiate discovery! Fire the Machines! Throw the switch Igor! THROW THE F***ING SWITCH!

vtmarik

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The rest is under rule of Belgium

Looks good, might change still the bonusses, but that will be hard work
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onbekende

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How are you going to decide who starts with what bonus, Because if you start with 1 nuke 'site' then you are prety much screwed from the begining and if someone starts with 2 then they have a huge advantage.
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Bozo

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The Conquer Club engine always distributes countries randomly at the start of the game. And with the bonuses/penalties we're looking at right now, starting with two irradiated countries should give the exact same effective penalty as starting with one. Statistically, I think most players are likely to start with either one or two. Some folks will occasionally have zero or three, but if I go with the -1/+1 numbers (instead of the -2/+2), that won't be any more of an advantage than starting with Downtown in Montreal.

Jota

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[url=http://grunk.org/risk/usa8-large.jpg]

There are now five options for fonts. Compare Corn Country, Ye Olde Newland, Aquaria, UST, and Voodoo Bayou. Please let me know which one you think works the best.

At this stage, I'm also really interested to hear what people have to say about the layout of the countries/borders/continents/bonuses. There are 45 countries in six continents:

Continent - countries - borders - neighbors
• Silicon Overmind - 7 - 4 - 3
• Corn Country - 12 - 6 - 4
• Ye Olde Newland - 6 - 2 - 2
• Aquaria - 5 - 2 - 2
• United States of Texas - 8 - 4 - 4
• Voodoo Bayou - 7 - 3 - 2

I'd like to have the borders more or less fixed before I start working on the XML.

Jota

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I like the Texas font the most...
Im still confused... What continent is Overmind, and what is Voodoo? The legend isnt good to them... Because by the way Voodoo is near Cuba, but its name is black as Overmind.

Bonuses? Should we add one more army because of infected places? If not, the bonuses would be to me:

Overmind: 4
Aquaria: 2 (although it would be 1, only its very small, so maybe 3)
Texas: 5
Corn Country: 8
Voodoo: 4
Newland: 2

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Well lets see...I've only got a little time so I'll first comment on visual appeal...

---First off I like the shape of the Corn Font, but it is rather hard to read. Second choice would be the Texas font. The bold bayou seems too striking.

---I like so far what you are doing with the background textures. For the most part they are interesting, though I feel Corn Country and Ye Old Newland's colors are a little too bright. Perhaps toning it down a little would help the eyes.

---I like the legend idea, obviously the names and sizes, and colors would have to be reworked, but I think the road signs are a nice visual addition.

---Also, is there perhaps another name for mississippi? It doesn't quite fit in the map, try playing with that. Maybe 'Sippi or perhaps another nickname or something it is famous for. And while I'm in the same general area, are you going to use the 'Army Shadows'? If so, it seems like the names currently are cramping where the shadows would be.

---Lastly, what do you have in mind for the ocean? Perhaps turbulent seas of some sort? Something to keep in sync with the current theme.

It's shaping up, hopefully I'll have time to comment more later!

--Andy

AndyDufresne

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