Super Structures and Creeps Idea.

  • My proposal for a super structure is a portal generator. Only 1 per player, very expensive to build 1M+ energy + minerals?. Costs energy and G to open and maintain a portal. A portal takes 20000 ticks to open and is visible to all players whilst is opening. Once open the portal can be used by any player in either direction like the portals in SK rooms. Portals last 20K ticks. For a number of reasons players wouldnt be able to open portals between shards.

    This would provide a way for players to wage war across much larger distances. Forcing a portal to remain open for a number of ticks prevents hit and run attacks with no option for retaliation.

    We could also add functionality to allow the creating player to extend the life of the portal by adding more resources but this shouldnt allow the creating player the ability to close the portal without warning

  • Dev Team

    Interesting idea. I like it because it could increase connectivity. But, we all here see it as a good thing while economical-oriented players who don't want war could say it is not that good idea. Currently, if a player doesn't want combat, he can escape and run far away (unless it's CoPS who chase him), but multi-shard player having portals can hit anyone without any traveling efforts. We need a solution for this.

    Plus, I'd say 20k is nothing, the 'appearing' time should be enough for players to react (well probably it's enough) and portal lifetime should be enough for an experienced player to set a foothold on the other side. Assuming nobody raised a room from RCL0 to RCL8 faster than 40k ticks, 20k sounds not enough.

  • I also don't much care for the super creeps idea. Those are power creeps.

    I think there's scope for "power buildings" that consume raw unprocessed power as well as energy to perform operations. In a way it feels a bit more natural than power creeps "operating" buildings.

    Super buildings could be hooked into the power creeps framework. I don't much care for the concept of "unique" buildings, but if they consumed power levels then maybe that'd help limit how many super buildings you'd get.

    EDIT: I should also say I'm not sure about the idea of making movement too easy. Locality is an important concept in screeps and I kinda feel it should remain so. IMO a 20k+20k portal would be too powerful without some other constraints on it. I would consider it "easy" to raise a room to RCL 8 with this kind of portal: during the first 20k ticks you're protected by active creeps and I feel you can easily get enough into there to be up to a terminal before the portal expires. A safe mode sees you through to RCL 8.

  • If not many people are using the transient sector-centre portals that we have right now, would anybody use more controllable portals? I think that people would, because of "power projection".

    If long-distance portals existed under my near-instant command, I would be able to project my military power anywhere on the shard. Currently, the transient sector centre portals means that it can take months before a particular sector is reachable by me. On the other hand, controllable long-distance portals would make the map very small because I could get anywhere I wanted in a few hours or days. There would be no escape from the more malevolent players. Distance is as much a component of your defences as ramparts, and the game would be very different if every player was under threat of attack from 800 players instead of maybe 20....

    If an aggressive open source bot like k-bot was coded to spin up portals to random sectors and attack whoever was there, what would the game be like? I posit that it would be fun for people whose defences can withstand that kind of attack, and disheartening for those who can't and who would have little prospect for retaliation, nor could they escape by respawning...

  • Maybe the solution would be to only allow the portal to be open for 100 or so ticks. That way you can get resources and creeps through to kickstart a room but that room would die to a moderately alert counter attack.

    In any case, I don't see connectivity to be an issue in Screeps and so don't really think we should be trying to "fix" it. There are plenty of people to fight close to you (except if you're in a mega-alliance, but then that's your own silly fault) and you can always go roaming one room jump at a time. Sure, it takes time, but nothing is screeps is quick.

  • @tigga said in Super Structures and Creeps Idea.:

    In any case, I don't see connectivity to be an issue in Screeps and so don't really think we should be trying to "fix" it. There are plenty of people to fight close to you (except if you're in a mega-alliance, but then that's your own silly fault) and you can always go roaming one room jump at a time. Sure, it takes time, but nothing is screeps is quick.

    I entirely agree. Without really trying I've migrated a fairly large distance from where my rooms were clustered in June. If I seriously wanted to get a room on the other side of the map, I don't feel like it would be impossible to leapfrog a couple of rooms to anywhere I wanted, provided I had a little bit of luck at choosing rooms without massively aggressive neighbours. And I think that's an appropriate level of effort and time commitment to get to the other side of the map.

  • Dev Team

    Distances are fine in Screeps. The Generation War proved that person (or persons) who really want to cross the whole shard to have some fun, will find a way to do it.

  • Overall, I'd rather see how power creeps affect the strategy side of the game before working on content that has a parallel impact. I think if after power creeps have been out for a bit it's worth looking into, although I'd rather have arena.


  • @Davaned I think power creeps are going to be a difficult to balance strategy wise, and will take a while to implement with all the abilities they posses. At least with these structures - the high costs and limited scope, they should be easier to balance and implement. The simple one for instance: 1 flag spawn that can be an fourth in any room, shouldn't be to difficult to add, and beneficial to all styles of play.

    @SteveTrov The portal idea seems fun, but add to the fact that the structure appears at the target point, and can be destroyed before it's built. You can also attack it then on from the otherside to close it instead of going through it. That also means you can repair it from your side. Takes days to finish building so if a player doesn't like it, they can attack it. Or if they are an ally, they can help build it from the other side.

    The main idea is that you should be observing people and if you spot a super structure you should think how it's going to be used, and if you want to attack it before it's finished. Tie this into an military leader board; super structures are how to get points. If people try to farm it by killing each other's super structures, then because the structure will be a construction site for week, they lose the benefit of the super structures.

  • Just to add some of my opinions to this discussion.

    As others have mentioned, I feel power creeps are super creeps. That avenue is not worth exploring imho.

    The idea of super structures has been proposed and discussed over time. I have a few comments, some high level and some on the specific proposed structures.

    First, I'm not a big fan of super structures because they either centralize empires (if 1-2 structures of a type per player) and/or add another advantage to entrenched players.

    I'm against centralized empires because it limits the style of play. Currently it is perfectly feasible to run a decentralized empire across multiple shards and locations. Once you add unique per empire structures, there's a need to build around that location to better protect it.

    The other issue is that I'm in favor of veteran players having the advantage of better developed code bases (already a huge advantage), providing veterans with more and more options to "invest" their resources besides GCL and Power creates an ever wider rift between old and new.

    Second, regarding some of the practical suggestions:

    1. I'm strongly against teleport or similar structures. The "local" nature of the screeps world is an absolutely essential aspect of it. Portals and frog hopping already provide players with plenty of options to get to a specific locations if they wish to. We do not need extra mobility or power projection.

    2. Temple. Why cancel out the current game challenge of bypassing the 15 cap? It's a good, healthy coding challenge for players.

    3. Super terminal - centralizes empire (see above) - partially covered by power creeps already.

    4. Missile silo. This one is funny. I personally treat my military creeps as missiles. It's not clear what "problem" this is attempting to solve and feels like a bitch to balance.