Leveling up units in MP games.

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Zhukov
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Leveling up units in MP games.

Post by Zhukov »

This is just something I noticed when playing a MP game a few days ago and wanted clarify.

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One of my Troll Whelps was attacked during an opponents turn, survived, and leveled up.
I was just planning how I would use my new full-size troll when I realised that the screen allowing me to choose what unit to level up to (in this case a Troll or Troll Rocklobber) hadn't appeared.
Instead my troll had simply turned into a Rocklobber, with no input from me.

It would seem that if one of your units levels up during an opponents turn, you are not given any choice between leveling options, the computer chooses for you. Now, in many cases this would not be a problem, however I happen to hate rocklobbers.

Also, it wasn't an incident confined to trolls. The same thing happened regarding a choice between Goblin Pillager and Goblin Knight.

I can think of several other units where I may not like the computer's choice, for example: Knight or Lancer, Red Mage or White Mage, Merman Hopilite or Merman Triton, Elvish Marksman or Elvish Ranger. You get the picture.

So, I was wondering, is this intentional, or some kind or error?
If it is intentional, why? I don't see how it adds anything.
If it is an error, can/will it be changed?
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zookeeper
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Post by zookeeper »

I think the reason for that behaviour is simple: if it's your turn, and you happen to level up your opponent's unit, you would have to wait until your opponent has noticed what has happened (I usually use my opponent's turn to do other stuff, not to watch every move they do) and chosen what he wants the unit to advance to (might not be a quick decision) before you could continue playing the rest of your turn.

Considering that no input from any other players except the one playing the turn is required anywhere else in MP games, making an exception in this would IMHO be a bad thing.

It would be good, however, to be able to set what a unit should level up into when they level up beforehand.
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Post by Ganter »

zookeeper wrote:It would be good, however, to be able to set what a unit should level up into when they level up beforehand.
Or after. The unit gets it's life and after the computers turn the level up screen pops up.

But there is a problem with this:
When the computer tries to attack the unit that is going to level.
But maybe…
1) This would not be a problem. The unit has full life. The computer can still attack the unit.
2) The computer won't be able to attack the unit. Your unit can level up in piece.
3) Each time this happens the level up screen will appear. You have to check the computers turns.

But all these proposals may be complicated. Though if they do, I don't see why.
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Post by Yogibear »

There is a simple rule and it already has been mentioned: no interactivity of other players during a players turn. It's there for a number of completely different reasons:
- It is more KISS
- It speeds up gameplay (not very much but still)
- It is a lot easier to deal with in the code

Delaying leveling up until it's that players turn is not feasible imo. The main reason here are further fights that bring up a lot of problems. How many hitpoints has the unit? What damage does it do on a counterattack?

So interrupt the game immediately and wait for an interactive decision seems to be the only way.
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zookeeper
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Post by zookeeper »

Ganter wrote:Or after. The unit gets it's life and after the computers turn the level up screen pops up.
It might not be a computer player's turn, but a human player's turn if it's multiplayer.
But maybe…
1) This would not be a problem. The unit has full life. The computer can still attack the unit.
A unit with 30hp can level up into either a unit with 40hp or a unit with 35hp. So how much is full life? The computer player, during the same turn, attacks the unit that has "leveled" again and does 37 points of damage. What happens? It can't really be solved.
2) The computer won't be able to attack the unit. Your unit can level up in piece.
This is the only way I see of solving the situation without input from the other player. However, intentionally leveling an enemy unit 1xp from leveling is currently a valid tactic. You can level the unit into something less dangerous to you than what the other player would himself choose, and you can also level it up yourself intentionally so you can kill it during the same turn.
3) Each time this happens the level up screen will appear. You have to check the computers turns.
No problem in single player, where computer turns take just a few seconds, but in multiplayer there might be only human players.

So, the only really feasible way of solving this would, IMHO, be to implement a small option to set a unit's advancement beforehand. For example a small button next to the xp value on the right side panel, with which you can flag the unit to automatically advance to a certain unit when it gains a level.
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Post by khamul »

Or leave it 'pinned': i.e. a unit can only obtain the final 1XP needed to level when attacking. It cannot gain it by being attacked. That way it can _only_ level on the player's own turn.

It's KISS - even more so than the current approach. But it's not obvious, not very realistic, and potentially quite irritating - particularly to people who make tactical decisions based on how it works today.

I don't have a problem with the current approach.
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Post by deserter »

zookeeper wrote:So, the only really feasible way of solving this would, IMHO, be to implement a small option to set a unit's advancement beforehand. For example a small button next to the xp value on the right side panel, with which you can flag the unit to automatically advance to a certain unit when it gains a level.
Yes, why not.
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Post by Neoriceisgood »

deserter wrote:
zookeeper wrote:So, the only really feasible way of solving this would, IMHO, be to implement a small option to set a unit's advancement beforehand. For example a small button next to the xp value on the right side panel, with which you can flag the unit to automatically advance to a certain unit when it gains a level.
Yes, why not.

I thought this aswell; just a little checkbox to avoid your precious units advancing in well, crap.
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Post by JW »

I like to level units differently depending on the situation. A preselected levelling tree may as well be random for all I care, as I won't know what situation my units will level in, and random takes less effort and time.
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Post by Viliam »

khamul wrote:Or leave it 'pinned': i.e. a unit can only obtain the final 1XP needed to level when attacking. It cannot gain it by being attacked. That way it can _only_ level on the player's own turn.

It's KISS - even more so than the current approach.
I think the most KISS and "fair" system would be this:

Unit also gets XP normally in opponents' turn, but never levels up. Only in owner's turn, after killing someone (and receiving XPs) the currect XP is compared with "XP to next level", and if it is equal or greater, unit will level up (with dialog) and if it had more XP than was necessary, the new unit will keep remaining XP. (However, even with huge amounts of exceeding XPs, this can never make her level up recursively, because leveling up is checked only once, in the moment of killing someone actively.)

Example: (XP to get level 2 be 20, XP to get level 3 be 60, then 100 for AMLA)
- The unit has 48 XP on first level. During opponents' turn it receives 200 more XP :twisted:, so now it has 248 XP, but is still at level 1.
- Now it's owner's turn. Unit kills someone, receiving 1 XP, so now it has 249 XP... the level up dialog appears, the unit is at 2nd level with 199 XP left (249-50). End turn.
- In next (owner's) turn unit kills and gains another 1 XP, so now it has 200 XP... level up dialog, unit is 3rd level, and has 140 XP left (200-60).
- In next (owner's) turn unit kills and gains another 1 XP, so now it has 141 XP... AMLA, 41 XP left.


KISS points:
- the only way to level up is to kill someone
- unit can only level up in owner's turn
- unit can only level up once per owner's turn (because it can actively kill only once)
- no additional game controls
- the only "special" rules are: no level up in opponent's turn, keep exceeding XPs

"Fairness" points:
- no XP is wasted
- owner can always choose the advancement path

IMHO this is as good as possible under the rule "no user interaction during opponent's turn".
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Post by JW »

Viliam wrote: Example: (XP to get level 2 be 20, XP to get level 3 be 60, then 100 for AMLA)
I think you meant 50 instead of 20 as your example suggets.


Viliam wrote:KISS points:
- the only way to level up is to kill someone
- unit can only level up in owner's turn
- unit can only level up once per owner's turn (because it can actively kill only once)
- no additional game controls
- the only "special" rules are: no level up in opponent's turn, keep exceeding XPs

"Fairness" points:
- no XP is wasted
- owner can always choose the advancement path

IMHO this is as good as possible under the rule "no user interaction during opponent's turn".
I actually think this idea would work other than needing to kill someone on your turn. It's hard to get a unit a kill sometimes, so it could delay levelling up by severeal turns - especially when RNG screws you. That hardly seems fair. Maybe if there was just a check at the start of your turn to see if any units level up - which they do automatically at your turn start. It's harder to explain using common sense, but it would make the gameplay more fair than your current suggestion, IMO.
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Post by Noyga »

I think delaying the level-up until the player's turn would be a nice thing.
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Dragonking
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Post by Dragonking »

Noyga wrote:I think delaying the level-up until the player's turn would be a nice thing.
And I think it would be ridiculous.
I have 29/30xp unit with _full_ hp, and I can't level up it in my turn. So enemy will kill it with 3, 4 or maybe even with 5 units but my unit won't gain level? No more comment...

Current system _is_ KISS. I think Yogi Bear described it really good.

Only problem that can occur is situation, where unit levels in enemy's turn. But I've found it as part of wesnoth strategy - for example undeads vs knalgans and attacking ghost near levelup and praying that it will become shadow not wraith...
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deserter
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Post by deserter »

Dragonking wrote:and praying that it will become shadow not wraith...
I don't want to pray for that. (or anything else)
When will it be a wraith and when a shadow? What are the rules?
JW wrote:I like to level units differently depending on the situation. A preselected levelling tree may as well be random for all I care, as I won't know what situation my units will level in, and random takes less effort and time.


But you must be aware which units are likely to level up at the very next opponent turn and in which situation. Isn't that right?

Now the icon could be available for you to make sure that your near-levelling-unit is going to level to whatever you would like. If you didn't then you would have to pray for levelling rules to be on your side. (Whatever they are like)
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Post by JW »

deserter wrote:
JW wrote:I like to level units differently depending on the situation. A preselected levelling tree may as well be random for all I care, as I won't know what situation my units will level in, and random takes less effort and time.


But you must be aware which units are likely to level up at the very next opponent turn and in which situation. Isn't that right?

Now the icon could be available for you to make sure that your near-levelling-unit is going to level to whatever you would like. If you didn't then you would have to pray for levelling rules to be on your side. (Whatever they are like)
I was thinking it would be at the beginning of the game. Having the ability to choose every turn sounds like an interesting option. It sounds like it would be really difficult to put it, and for little gain.

It does sound interesting though. Having a visual representation of what you select it to level up to beforehand would also make people more aware of what units change and what units AMLA at their next level. I still don't know every tree perfectly and I know several that don't know it very well. This would help them.
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