Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
EDITED: Friday, 30 April

Under Siege Proposal (Fleet Starbase and Fleet v. Fleet)
A Community Developed Proposal - Player Feedback Needed

( --| poll is up! vote here: http://surveys.polldaddy.com/s/A99D97E08C7298F1/ |-- )

full-color PDF coming in May

Preface:
There are a lot of great ideas out there for Fleet-controlled starbases, Open PvP, and Territory Control Content.

However, there's the problem of implementing all of them: some are mutually exclusive, many of them require their own art assets, etc. How are player populations balanced in Open PvP or Territory Control? Can we prevent a gankfest?

What if we combined elements from each to create a new gameplay mode that could potentially enhance PvE and PvP equally?
Introduction:
This proposal is aimed at gathering community feedback and suggestions. Let's improve or replace any of the ideas below for the betterment of the game (and, therefore, our leisure time).

There are really two proposals at work here (though the latter is opt-in but they'd go great together):
  • The first concerns the construction of Fleet-constructed starbases or space stations. These resource-heavy constructs would need both trade goods and anomalous materials in their construction. Without heavy polling on our end, Cryptic is best left to answer what a feasible amount of resources would be required for the construction of a space station.

  • The second concerns sieges of Fleet-constructed starbases. We'll take into account varying population numbers, siege offense/defense, and limits (so players aren't forced to defend their bases all the time).
__________________________________________________

Table of Contents
I. Fleet-controlled Starbase Construction
a. Construction Notes
b. Starbase Facilities
c. Examples of Various Starbases

II. Fleet-controlled Starbase Sieges
a. Siege Rules/Calendar
b. Fleet-controlled Starbase Siege Map
c. Rewards for Sieges (Success & Failure reaps unique rewards)
d. Siege Standings (Leaderboards)

III. Addendum: Effective Level Design
IV. The Benefit to Players/Developers: Why Bother?

__________________________________________________

I. Fleet-controlled Starbase Construction
a. Construction Notes
  • Fleets construct their own starbases
  • One per fleet.
  • Energy/Technology Resource Requirements based on Tier of Starbase; developer arbitrated.
  • Fleets can name system/star base
  • Player Starbases appear on searchable list or calendar (rather than clutter warp-able sector or force players to look at another map)
  • Construction Time equals one week (maps updated to next developed tier during server maintenance).
  • If a fleet desires to not encounter sieges, they can opt-out any time.

b. Starbase Facilities
Mandatory:
  • Command Center
  • Engineering/Power Core
  • Docking Platform (no shuttlecraft - just capital ship access).
  • Brig:
    grants bonus to defending team's base rewards (see II. c. for details)
  • Sick Bay (heals player injuries; adds +30% crew regen for emplacements)
  • Bank
  • Exchange
  • Shuttlebay Mk I (allows for a few shuttles/fighters for defense)
Tier 1 (choose 3; highest member of fleet must be at least Lt. Commander 10)
  • Research Center Mk I
  • Drydock Facility Mk I (allows repairs for free; allows shuttle/fighter crafting)
  • Turret Emplacement Mk I (180 degrees; )
  • Torpedo Battery Mk I (90 degrees)
Note: Turrent Emplacements and Torpedo Batteries deal 25%
Tier 2 (choose 2 - can also be from last list; highest member of fleet must be at least Commander 10)
  • Drydock Facility Mk II
    requisition:
    Commander vessels at 90%
    Lt. Commander Vessels at 75%
    Lieutenant & below at 60%
  • Research Center Mk II (allows for crafting of Mk VI or less)
  • Shuttlebay Mk II (allows more shuttles/fighters for defense)
  • Turret Emplacement Mk II (180 degrees)
  • Torpedo Battery Mk II (90 degrees)
Tier 3 (choose 2 - can also be from previous list; highest member of fleet must be at least Captain 10)
  • Drydock Facility Mk III
    requisition:
    Captain vessels at 90%,
    Commander at 75%
    Lt. Commander & below at 60%
  • Research Center Mk III (allows for crafting of Mk VIII or less)
  • Turret Emplacement Mk III
  • Torpedo Battery Mk III
Tier 4 (choose 3 - can also be from previous list; ; highest member of fleet must be Rear Admiral 10)
  • Drydock Facility Mk IV
    requisition:
    Rear Admiral vessels at 90%,
    Captain at 75%
    Commander & below at 60%
  • Research Center MK IV (allows for crafting of Mk X or less)
  • Turret Emplacement Mk IV
  • Torpedo Battery Mk IV
( - see Fleet Starbase in-game @ ImageShack - )

c. Example Space Stations:
Federation Alpha (see Sol - http://www.geoffreyhutchins.co.uk/im...warp_drive.jpg)
Federation Beta (see Star Trek (2009) - http://www.coronacomingattractions.c...ce_station.jpg)

Cardassian (see Deep Space Nine - http://sloehand.files.wordpress.com/2009/06/st_ds9.jpg)
Romulan (see http://www.lightningcoyote.com/old%2...f/Ships/rs.jpg)
Klingon (see http://drexfiles.files.wordpress.com...3/kling_ss.jpg)
__________________________________________________

II. Fleet-controlled Starbase Sieges
a. Siege Rules / Calendar
A single starbase can only be assaulted when it is flagged.

Fleets can flag certain days (and hours) that they're available for siege (this is to prevent fleets from spending all their time defending a station - unless they want to).

Alternatively, fleets leaders can also mark dates/times on a calendar for competing forces to consider.

For example, if most of my fleet can only make it Thursday night - we can open our base up for sieges that night but also search for starbases that are open for siege on the calendar ahead of time[, whether that day or a few days prior.

This gives fleets the tools to planning without necessarily gridlocking their decisions. Fleet Administrators could also contact opposing fleets to arrange times.
b. Fleet-controlled Starbase Siege Map
(instanced maps of 10 v 10 until less than 10 per side, then 5v5, 3v3, 1v1 until evenly matched - calculate average Grade for assaulting fleet)

[needs significantly more debate]
c. Rewards for Sieges:
Player bases are flagged at:
  • Off - No sieges possible, strictly the owning fleet's social hub
  • Normal - sieges possible (no DP)
  • Hard -sieges possible (respawns allowed, injury system; rewards slightly boosted)
  • Elite - sieges possible (no repawns in sieged area until siege is over - can chose to respawn at your last destination at any time but means you'd exit siege-play; rewards greatly boosted)
All participants can earn a base amount skillpoints (for themselves & boffs) and energy credits, in addition to rewards scaled for involvement in the siege (and whether your side won).

Successful team receives "Seized Goods":
  • Top 5% contributors get a better reward
  • Next to top 5% get a slightly better reward
  • Everyone else gets a slight bonuses
Failing team receives "Salvage Goods":
  • Top 5% receive slight reward bonus
  • Everyone else normal skillpoints, energy credits
d. Siege Standings (Leaderboards)
Overall Faction versus Faction Totals (for successful defenses ratio).
Fleets with the most successful defense ratio are calculated on a weekly, monthly, quarterly, and semi-annual basis.
__________________________________________________

III. Addendum: Effective Level Design
[draws on experience designing MP level for FPS games, while balancing for social hub needs]
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
04-26-2010, 01:48 PM
__________________________________________________

IV. Benefit to Players/Developers:
By having fleet starbases (and their subsequent siege assaults/defenses), players can be more active (but not too much) during the course of their week. This would foster social and teamgameplay.

The concept of sieges comes from SWG - which had player City versus City sieges not long after launch. It was a beautiful system - even if it could fall apart at times. Consider this player city vs. city 2.0: directing that experience into something balanced that everyone can enjoy.

It'd also give everyone (from crafters to PvP to roleplayers) a meeting spot for their fleet. Imagine relaxing with fleet-mates, in-between missions. You could contribute to building sections of the station - working as a team toward a PvE/Secial Goal.

Then, RED ALERT! A klingon fleet has emerged from Warp. Everyone in the fleet has the option to participate in the station's defense. The fleet would now work on a PvP/Competitive goal - as well as a highlight each week (if the fleet opts into Sieges)

On the developer-end, there's certainly a content generation hurdle. This is a given.

However, would this new gameplay aspect drive players to be more active in the game?
Would it inspire players to return or new ones to join?

That's above my paygrade - market research is not my forte. However, this system would operate independently of existing PvP and PvE modes. Thanks to a limited scope - it hopefully shouldn't detract from either of those systems in-place right now.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
04-26-2010, 01:50 PM
[doubt I'll need it but the community might want some growing space]
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
04-26-2010, 01:59 PM
my view on pvp is normally stemmed from the main pvp games ive played.

1 being **** for 5 years +
2 from warhammre which has slightly different mechanic but very similar to ****

In **** you had a PVP realm that linked all the zones you couldnt break into the pve zones but you could do missions and quests in pvp at a greater reward to yourself but at a risk of being hunted by the enemy.

Now in each effectivly square i suppose for startrek online it would be sector, you would have a central keep surrounded by 3 towers. now you could seige the keep itself OR take the towers and use them as a defensive post to attack the keep.

After you attack and take the keep it takes time to upgrade.

Now in Startrek online what i would think would be better would be having control points within the sector made up of the different planetary systems. Each system would provide a bonus to your side in terms of say increased defensive bonus OR increased damage. If you say take all the keeps it should open up a epic encounter say the enterprise turns up OR the defiant which you can then gain a reward from.

The other aspect is that in PVP in both warhammer and **** there was a secondary exp tier that you got from killing the enemy or assisting in defence / offence. In startrek you get the merit points but after a while you will have all the equipment with nothing to spend it on, instead how about having extra bonusses OR extra skill points you can purchase (although not sure about that)

So in startrek say your realm decides to invade the regulus sector with a push onto SOL they would have to take and hold every planet in the regulus system before they can attack starbase one. now you should provide the player the option to either remain in the pve side OR switch to the PVP side and help defend the regulus system. You could even have objectives when you reach sol like Jupiter shipyards OR utopia planetia.

For player controlled starbases you need a system of maintenance even if its a comodoty delivery option
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
04-26-2010, 02:11 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Awarkle View Post
For player controlled starbases you need a system of maintenance even if its a comodoty delivery option
I understand part of where you're coming from: I'm a former SWG City vs. City player as well as WAR.

Having a maintenance fee for starbases based on combat might deter players from using it. We saw how divisive the death penalty / difficulty slider was these past few weeks.

This is why I'd suggested an opt-in, in the form of a fleet assigning their own starbase's difficulty level:
  • Off - No sieges possible
  • Normal - No losses; sieges possible
  • Hard - Some losses from fleet bank, injury possible.
  • Elite - Noticeably more losses from fleet bank, greater injury possible.

What do you think?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
04-26-2010, 02:13 PM
Darren, My main man, again posting in a epic thread with a very talented OP hard at work.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
04-26-2010, 03:15 PM
i dont think you should loose items from fleet banks, it was proven in city of heroes / villains that noone actually wanted their bases destroyed due to the time sink required to build them up. so noone flagged their guilds for pvp. the same would be for a loss of items from banks.

now your starbase should have two levels to it, 1 the external space combat system where like the starships you place weapons / equipment even maybe bridge officers OR some generic purchasable officers.

and an internal where you can put in defence or design the layout to your starbase with capturable points.

if your defending yourstar base you could have both happening at the same time the risk could be if your on the base when its destroyed then it would be the same as being killed. and instead of reapiring in say the system your transported back to sol and you have to pay a deduction to repair your ship your crew and yourself. (it would soak up some of the massive funds floating around-

a better system would be if your fleet looses a starbase then a lockout from claiming any other starbases for maybe 24 hours.

also you need a reward for defence and attack both successful and non succesful.

so say your klingon you attack a starbase but defenders turn up you should gain somthing for attempting the impossible.

remember people prefer incentives than negatives.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
04-26-2010, 03:36 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Awarkle View Post
i dont think you should loose items from fleet banks, it was proven in city of heroes / villains that noone actually wanted their bases destroyed due to the time sink required to build them up. so noone flagged their guilds for pvp. the same would be for a loss of items from banks.
Hmmm... I suppose you're right. Perhaps having the brig add to the successful defense bonus rewards?
Quote:
now your starbase should have two levels to it, 1 the external space combat system where like the starships you place weapons / equipment even maybe bridge officers OR some generic purchasable officers.

and an internal where you can put in defence or design the layout to your starbase with capturable points.
In order of personal preference:
1) Player-customized capture point layouts
2) Pre-generated capture point layouts (assumes prefab interior layouts)
3) Simple deathmatch

[Note: added section III. Addendum: Effective Level Design to provide notes/advice on creating ground map layouts, based on both MMO and FPS concerns/conventions]


expect this to be fleshed out by players.

I've create multiplayer levels and mods for games as old as Dark Forces to Quake 3 Arena to Unreal Tournament. There's a wealth of information on how to make the map layout both functional (for MMOs) and tactical (as in sound design for combat). Great stuff and I'm sure we can think outside the genre "box."
Quote:
if your defending yourstar base you could have both happening at the same time the risk could be if your on the base when its destroyed then it would be the same as being killed. and instead of reapiring in say the system your transported back to sol and you have to pay a deduction to repair your ship your crew and yourself. (it would soak up some of the massive funds floating around-
Well, as you say, incentivizing sieges is the devil's work: it's tough to balance.

I purposefully didn't include starbase loss due to the anti-DP concerns on the forum. No need letting this idea get bogged down in committee because of tying the default mode to a DP.
Quote:
a better system would be if your fleet looses a starbase then a lockout from claiming any other starbases for maybe 24 hours.
Well, ideally - no one would lose a starbase. They'd essentially by raiding parties on bases (hopefully, you you can see why I didn't use the word "raid").
Quote:
also you need a reward for defence and attack both successful and non succesful.

so say your klingon you attack a starbase but defenders turn up you should gain somthing for attempting the impossible.
Rewards could be given to both sides (higher tier increases the rewards - winner gets more, loser gets less). Perhaps even a heal/damage/absorb calculator to determine who contributed the most to the fight, per the PvP scoring changes (not sure if they hit yet).

[Note: updated II. c. Rewards for Sieges to reflect this]
Quote:
remember people prefer incentives than negatives.
True - I think having the default setting allow for sieges (but no losses) would cover most everyone.

We'd need to introduce a new Merit system for Sieges - to accommodate leaderboards (and possibly rewards).
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
04-26-2010, 08:44 PM
Added In-game Mock-up under section I. b.
( - see Fleet Starbase Management in-game @ ImageShack - )
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
04-27-2010, 02:23 AM
Fantastic Idea, I love it! Maybe could use a bit of tweaking, I'll give better feedback later.
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