Ok, game related

Just to convince some of you I do actually still work. For CRS, too. On WWII Online.

I recently lobbed this at the production team as a possible option for replacing the current auto-leader selection. Shouldn’t take me more than a few hours to implement.

. Missions gain a new flag: “electing”, indicating that leadership is up for grabs.
. “/takelead” allows players to volunteer during this phase
. At the end of the electing phase, a new leader is elected in descending order of preference:
— highest ranked, most tom, volunteer
— existing mission leader
— highest ranked, most Time On Mission (TOM), non-afk, spawned player
— highest ranked, most TOM player
— first player in mission list
. If a mission goes into “electing” and the leader types /takelead election is over
. If the mission leader leaves the mission without automatically assigning a new leader, mission goes into “electing” mode
. If a mission leader does not post /orders within X seconds (e.g. 90 or 120) of becoming leader, mission goes into “electing”.
. If a mission leader fails to approve OR deny Y con reports in a row, mission goes into “electing”.
. If you lose leadership while remaining on-mission through an election you get an N minute window in which to resume control by typing “/takelead” (ran to door to get pizza? missed some con reports, you can take the mission back from Poor Newbie)
. [If you lose leadership by exiting the mission, e.g. cthl/ctd, you get a similar window of opportunity: Pointless, how would you know? KFS1s mission becomes GOPHURs mission]

I’ve also thrown them a concept for replacing the “mission” system. We’ve always planned for the mission system to be something more elegant and – most importantly – achievable/scorable.

Warning: This is based on my initial draft proposal, is not modified or adapted to feedback by other Rats, and is not officially sanctioned by Those In Charge.

My concept is to split the current concept of a mission into two parts. A “company” that you join, which has a particular meta-focus, such as capture Antwerp or capture the north depot. It’s really primarily a grouping and spawning mechanism. Once in, you can more or less do what you like.

But, the mission leader will have a list of sub-goals that he can detail to the men in his company.

Think for a second about a group of soldiers trying to capture an enemy position. The commander realizes that there is an enemy machine gun pinning his men from the northeast. He details 3 men to go deal with it while the rest of the company continue trying to reach their main objective. 

So if you are capturing the north depot and you need someone to go blow the bridge 50ft away, you don’t have to create a new mission or company. Because its in the area of your company, it’ll be on the mission leaders list of possible details. He simply clicks it and all company members would be able to see it on their own mission details (in the map/hud, without despawning).

If the player wants to do it and get scored for it, he clicks the equivalent box in his mission display (with or without despawning at his discresion). Once its done, and within various scoring rules (to stop people getting points for stuff they aren’t actually doing), he can switch back and that goes to the database as a successful/completed detail. He gets points, etc. But best of all, he never actually left his company, he stayed on the same radio channels, he kept the same leader, the same organization, the same friendlies on map, the same everything. Perhaps we’d add a “/DETail” command for talking to others on the same detail within the company channel.

Individual details would be the basic verbs of the tactical play: Capture depot, Defend depot, Destroy bridge, Maintain bridge, Resupply vehicles, Destroy firebase, Defend firebase, Fire sector, etc. Each would have a fairly simple, easily defined and player-visible rule set. Points for killing enemys from within 100m of this depot. Kill enemy tanks from within 500m of this position. Transport friendly infantry from near this position to near that position. Deploy a mobile spawn at this location. Etc.

Simply put: Brigade = Strategy, Company = Goal, Detail = Tactical/Assignment

I don’t think the typical MMOGs group concepts work fully in WWII Online, because conditions change too rapidly. Groups need to have some breathing room that doesn’t require an awful lot of UI fiddly or chopping and changing.

I don’t think you should have to change company in order to do something that is beneficial to your goal but not, stricly, “on task” – like repairing a bridge to allow armor from another company to cross a river and support you, 50ft from the depot you’re trying to defend.

Another feature of my initial draft is that each detail, on the company leader’s list, would be a second check box allowing him to tell other company leaders that he needs this detail done.

Consider: East of the depot you’re at is a bridge your guys can reach and take out. You check box 1 that says “make this a detail of my company”.

To the west is another bridge which is out of range for your men, but bombers or another company might be able to take it out and secure your position. You check box 2 and other leaders/commanders now see a waypoint/con report indicating another company would like it destroyed.

Language independent communication.

12 Comments

Huge enthusiasm here on both fronts.

The way the leader change happens under your proposal just makes sense, and also helps to get rid of the absentee leader problem that’s such an annoyance.

The refactoring of the mission concept also works the way that makes sense, and is how groups work naturally. The more that the system can mirror normal human behavior, the easier to use.

A great-big thumbs up here, and I hope that TPTB see the elegance in it!

Keep lobbying the other Rats with things like this!

You current ideas have GREAT merit, heck even some of the vocal minority in the playschool forums would love this! Although they’d have to find some new things to moan about. ;-)

I think the mission leader could be simplified for the players. I would prefer it all be done automatically. In the UI, players check/uncheck a “Lead” box. They can also toggle it via a chat command. /leadon and /leadoff

The mission creator is the mission leader initially, but all of the criteria you listed determines (automatically) leadership after that. The key change would be that there is always a backup leader. The backup leader would automatically get any contact reports which are ignored by the mission leader. When the mission leader fails in the same way that you detailed above, the backup leader is promoted to mission leader, and a new backup leader is chosen from the group of players with “/leadon” automatically (using the same criteria you listed).

Any player not wanting the position assigned to them can just type /leadoff and get removed from that position. Also, the mission leader can still manually choose leadership using the current /makeleader and /backupleader commands. It would reduce player’s need to interact with the electing interface and the backup leader would already be prepared to take over leadership. Players wouldn’t have to be notified when the backup leader changes, unless it concerned them specifically.

I guess there would also have to be provisions for when no one is willing to lead. The orders could change to “Mission closing in 1 minute without leader. Type /leadon to become eligible for leadership.” Then at the end of the 1 minute, check again for eligible candidates, and if none, close the mission.

Incidentally, each company within a brigade would be assigned a name, e.g.
UK: Able, Baker, Charlie, Dog, Easy, Freddie, George, Harry, Ink, Johnny, King, London, Mother, Nuts, Orange, Popsie
FR: Anna, Berthe, Cecile, Daniel, Emile, Francois, Gustave, Henri, Ida, Jeanne, Kilo, Louise, Marie, Nicole, Oscar, Pierre
DE: Anton, Berta, Caesar, Dora, Emil, Friedrich, Gustav, Heinrich, ida, Jakob, Kaiser, Ludwig, Martha, Nordpol, Otto, Peter

(I’m not sure if the FR/DE ones are entirely period-accurate)

We’d need to clean up the brigade names a little, so that you can easily say: French, Army, 1/3/A and it would be relatively obvious to any newbie that you mean’t 1div 3brig Acomp from the presentation of the div/brigade names.

And we’d still need to provide tools for company leaders to share information/cons/etc the way that we are already planning to for mission leaders. Most crucially, they would share those tools with the brigade OIC, and the brigade OIC would be elected in a similar fashion to the mission OIC – excepting when the designated HC officer is online and active in his own brigade.

Now your’re getting down to it. I like the ability to target objectives within a mission so that other missions can see it too.

Sweet – left something similar on Gophur’s blog recently. Just seems that all these other MMO communities are screaming out for more dynamic player-driven worlds, and WWIIOL has that in spades. Well worth pushing it even further.

Taken from a photo I have of code words on a German Field Telephone.

DE: Anton, Berta, Casar, Dora, Emil, Friedrich, Gustav, Heinrich, Ida, Julius, Konrad, Ludwig, Martha, Nordpol, Otto, Paula

You have some excellent ideas. I hope we see some form of them in game eventually.

What? Nobody in line to have your babies? I humbly donate my wife for said duties.

If you did this, wouldn’t it be obvious to follow through with this to the HC? /MakeCinC /dontmakemeCinC :)

For that matter, the brigade HC OiC will usually end up being a DivHC because there arn’t enough of those around, and I suspect 99% of the time the briagde OiC will be a NON-HC player :).

love the idea of unit names. Group identification is a good physcological (sp) tool.

Howabout some voice commands for groups as well.:)

I think this is a great idea, and 2 out of 2 n00bs concur.

BTW spaces before semicolons of fookin blasphemy!!!!!

Fluth wants to hump your leg.

The basic idea is excellent, however, would we not have too many ML’s who simply dont use this feature? (assigning details)

Perhaps Gophur’s idea of scoring mission leaders would work well with this. MLs who DO use your advanced features could get a higher rating, which people then could use to select missions.

What I like in particular about your idea is that you could then drastically limit the number of missions per objective.

Trout

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