Beta-testers needed!!! (RTS)

Discussion in 'NDS - Emulation and Homebrew' started by LDAsh, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. LDAsh

    LDAsh Advanced Member

    Jan 18, 2007

    The RTS4DS Engine probably can produce the most advanced, fully-featured and powerful RTS games on the NintendoDS. The engine has received some major updates lately and we're needing more playtesters to help us into the final stretch of development. We have builds and content for you ready to download. If you're interested, please register and let us know here:-
  2. AlanJohn

    AlanJohn くたばれ

    GBAtemp Patron
    AlanJohn is a Patron of GBAtemp and is helping us stay independent!

    Our Patreon
    Jan 6, 2011
    Canada,New Jersey
    ... Its not polite to post links to other forumns without the administrators permission you know [​IMG]
  3. Nujui

    Nujui I need something to do.

    Aug 12, 2010
    United States
    Ask one of the mods before you post to other forums.
  4. Ron

    Ron somehow a weeb now.

    Dec 10, 2009
    Aside from that minor ignorance of netiquette

    It looks pretty cool! I would be interested in testing this on the R4i Gold, the DSTWO and the AK2i.
    I love RTS games, and there aren't many on the DS
  5. Gamer4life

    Gamer4life I am the Orange Gamer

    May 13, 2009
    United States
    so i am guessing the new build is ready for me then
  6. DrOctapu

    DrOctapu Magnificent Bastard

    Dec 23, 2008
    United States
    Those screens look awesome. I'm interested.
  7. jboykin325

    jboykin325 Newbie

    Sep 12, 2010
    United States

    .....Starcraft DS! .....

  8. Sausage Head

    Sausage Head Lord Sausage LXIX

    Oct 28, 2010
    alanjohn check ur pm
    Will it be 'Warcraft' style? Like, gathering lumber and stuff to create buildings?
  9. ferofax

    ferofax End of the World

    Jan 26, 2009
    first of all, those screens look gorgeous. [​IMG]

    now i'd love to help you guys out as a playtester, but unfortunately for me i've really got not much time to invest, and i'm a sporadic user at the moment, meaning i only get to go online every once in a while. i can however give you a few tips, at least, the stuff i'd expect from a topnotch RTS on a handheld.

    Frame rate. Lotta factors to work with here, mainly how much stuff is showing onscreen, and how much stuff you got going on (including offscreen action) inside the DS.

    Graphics first. As i said, those screens look gorgeous, but if it drags the frame rate down, might wanna consider using simpler ones. A ton of action is damn fun, but slowdowns can sort of put a damper on things (of course, it can BE sorta helpful too, when in a pinch). Some slowdown is bearable, and unavoidable mostly, on the DS, but too much is too much. Look at Plants VS Zombies, everything looks great, but the action is still very fierce, and lags only appears when there's too much stuff going on. When it gets to that point, lags are unavoidable, so a good thing may be to set a limit to how much stuff can be onscreen at any one point. Ensures you got top speed all throughout.

    Also, don't forget visibility. Your screens, maps, menu, they all look great, but if you can't make out the units from the background (objects look vivid, overpowering the unit sprites), then it'll be confusing as hell trying to micromanage.

    Also, put a unit/population cap. Find the max you can put for total population on one battle, then split that maybe fourways (if you're planning on making it up to 4P free-for-all, which you should, on local wifi too), then find the max amount you can animate onscreen. Then tweak that. Try to give an impressive amount onscreen, like maybe higher than 40. That amount of units wreaking havoc with no lags should be a ton of fun to watch. Bottomline: (reasonable) population caps should help with the framerate.

    On the topic of micromanaging, try to work out a way to be able to select individual groups of units, either through face/shoulder button (or button combinations, which will let you do more on a limited amount of buttons), or maybe small onscreen interfaces (maybe a dropdown list, icon list/grid, even radial commands, your choice). Being able to effectively control even individual units on the fly will be SO MUCH WIN. Also, maybe work in some of these commands, like "Rally to leader" where all available combat units will converge on a specific unit you're keeping an eye on, or "Rally to combat" where available combat units converge on the first enemy contact (like when you get attacked, your combat units converge WHERE THE ATTACK HAPPENED, especially on homebase or critical resources). These are of course, just feature suggestions, and will require some pretty smart AI scripting.

    And on that topic, AI. God, please make 'em smart as hell. Like intuitive smart, if you can. Pathfinding! Make sure Pathfinding algorithms are good enough to be able to send a resource drone somewhere at least two or three screens away. Half the fight is won if your units are smart enough to make their way from east to west without getting clogged on a bottleneck because one unit does not know to walk around a wide cliff.

    There's just so much stuff i wanna add, which makes me wanna sign up more, but i'm afraid i might be reaching this post's character limit, i dunno, so i'll leave things at that, and just keep a close watch on your project.

    More power, i hope betatesting goes great, and make it so good that maybe we'll see it actually PUBLISHED.
  10. tehnoobshow

    tehnoobshow GBAtemp Fan

    Sep 23, 2010
    The Space Time Continum
    Looks cool, will try this on my the thought of something similar to starcraft on DS is very appealing (almost orgasmic).
  11. LDAsh

    LDAsh Advanced Member

    Jan 18, 2007
    Thanks for the wall of text!

    We don't have this, exactly. What we do have is an awards system. You'll be rewarded gold, silver or bronze for each level, depending on some factors, your performance. All gold status will give the player some very special surprises! There is a rank, but it's not determined by performance, simply by what level you're up to. You'll get more units and structures to build, bigger bases and larger numbers. This rank can also decrease! At higher levels, you'll also get "VIP" units with special stats and attacks, some pretty insane ones, too. You could call them "hero" units. Usually, if for the player, they cannot die otherwise you'll instantly fail the mission. For enemy forces, these units need to be captured or eliminated completely in order to complete the mission. Finally, as a spoiler, later in the game there is a special unit, the "Energy Orb", which by itself is a useless waste of money, but it suddenly makes all your nearby human units (at this time in the game, the player might not feel they want to produce any) extremely valuable, coupled with the "Energy Orb" they become near invincible under a force-field, that even the bigger splash-damage attacks might not kill them off. A second later, they will have 100% health again. Attacks need to be directed at the "Energy Orb" instead. This _only_ works on the cheap human units, so, that's about as close as we get to your suggestions.

    Thanks again so much for the suggestions! We really appreciate it, and more is welcome! [​IMG]
  12. ferofax

    ferofax End of the World

    Jan 26, 2009
    your game engine sounds real impressive then, if it can handle up to 150 units without lags. and that's with all the blowing up going on too, i presume? [​IMG]

    about visibility, that point about mines sounds good to me, but mainly i was just concerned about how some RTS don't end without total annihilation, meaning destroy every single enemy unit/structure. bad visibility, lack of idle animation, and a combination of large overlapping objects and tiny units can be quite frustrating, making it a needle in a haystack situation. i dunno how you guys are gonna handle objectives, i just hope the system doesn't force the player to search for that last hiding drone or cloaked unit (if there are cloaked units or cloaking tech in the game). look at how Battle Realms handles this. once all critical production structures are destroyed and the enemy is left with no way to replenish their numbers, their last units become visible on the minimap, avoiding the inevitable sweep of fog-of-war maps. so... yeah, i guess that's what my worries were mainly. of course, it's not a very common feature, but... i dunno. or maybe do it the way Warlords Battlecry III deals with it: by including a Rampant command that puts a unit on a random search mode. This way, you can just flood the map with fast units set on random search, hoping they'll bump into that last hiding hostile. Of course, this feature is only for skirmishes, where there's no specific goal of locating something, just flat-out war. and you can limit this mode by enabling it only after decimating an enemy's base and you're on clean-up phase. I mean, you can use this probably from the get-go, but with limited starting resources, and large areas to cover, it probably won't be an effective way to clear any map.

    as for AI and pathfinding, of course, i don't expect the AI to be able to waltz out of a particularly difficult maze, but i kinda expect it to TRY to head in the general direction commanded. i guess being able to make units go a certain direction without having to manually maneuver it this way or that every time a turn comes up should be good enough. OR, maybe include even a limited type of waypoint system? i mean, it's pretty common in recent RTS, but i dunno how easy it is to implement so... and it doesn't have to be full waypoint system, like maybe up to 3 points per waypoint or something? your call on how to tweak it, but it's something that'd be a plus.

    oh yeah, about that PAUSE thing, i know it's pretty unorthodox, i just kinda threw it out there to test the waters, i guess. i kinda liked that feature on Warzone 2100 for the Playstation. It lets you issue commands while paused. Doesn't mean you get less micromanaging, just gives you more time to do it, making it not-so-hectic. Which is probably why i love turn-based strategies so much, ahaha, but that's beside the point. [​IMG]

    VIP units? i love the sound of that. make sure they can kick some ass, like Raynor or Zeratul (Starcraft). As for the awards, is that like "as you gain more levels" or "as you go further"? ah, but i guess we'll see that eventually eh?