Post news RSS Marine "Power Grid" design

I wanted to explain and get feedback on the idea of the marine "power grid" in Natural Selection 2.

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I wanted to explain and get feedback on the idea of the marine "power grid" in Natural Selection 2. This idea came from discussions about Company of Heroes and supply lines (featured in many board games) and whose main goal is to give the combat a dynamic feel. As the game progresses, different regions of the map should have shifting values and different rewards for building or destroying there.

One more thing - in NS2 there are no hive rooms per se and the marines can't build their Command Stations anywhere. Both teams must build their Hives or Command Stations at special points on the map called "tech points". Building here lets the team have the ability to have another commander, and also is needed for "teching up" to tier 2 or tier 3.

Here's the current idea, let me know what you think.

Power Grid

The power grid is like the concept of "territory" in Company of Heroes. It keeps marine structures functional. It means that structures are only powered if they connect back to a built, active Command Station. The purpose of the power grid is to cause different areas of the map to have different strategic value at different times, to enable comebacks and to give the aliens an ability to win even when the situation looks hopeless.

On the left is the map layout with the tech points (hive and command station points) represented by red squares and resource nozzles by purple circles. The arrows represent the routes players can travel but don't affect the power grid. The right picture shows the power grid - each room is treated a a unit on the grid (power region). Command Stations provide power to all adjacent rooms that have a built resource tower in them.

The resource tower pumps resources into the Command Station, and the Command Station powers the resource tower. When the resource tower is active, the entire room sparks to life and "powers on". If a resource tower is then built in an adjacent room, that room powers up and other structures in that room can function. Structures will not function if the room they are in are not powered up.

When resource towers or command stations take damage, lights and computers in rooms that are powered by that node will start flickering. Destroying a resource tower in the middle of a chain, or destroying the command station at the end of the chain will power all dependent rooms down. Damaging a tower or command station will cause lights and monitors in affected rooms to flicker, hinting at what might occur. When the power goes out, infantry portals stop spawning in players, armories can't be used to buy or resupply, Command Stations become inactive, sentries power down, etc. These power regions will be drawn for the Commander, and will blink red when unpowered.

For clarification, alien structures aren't affected by the power grid (although they have their own system that relates to dynamic infestation).

Thoughts? Feedback?
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Comments
Tallon_hunteR
Tallon_hunteR

love it, provides a depth to strategy that the original lacked.

am i correct in assuming a similar system would be utilized for the khaara, with Flamethrowers being utilized to cut DI connection?

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kwijl
kwijl

omg this game is gonna be the best ever if they keep coming up with this kind of tweaks :D

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Jeffman12
Jeffman12

Isn't there a danger that both teams may end up too similar, though?

I'd assume that the maps wouldn't necessarily be limited to only 6 points, it would start to seem kinda linear in that case. If a mapper were to include more points than 6, say 8, would the Marines and Aliens be limited to only building on 3, still? I would assume so, as there's not much purpose to letting there be more if 3 fills out the tech tree.

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Nitro_Hedgehog
Nitro_Hedgehog

sounds like a great idea. but i would have to learn more about this dynamic infestation first. i'm sure you guys have the balance issues worked out but i'd still like to see the aliens version of this.

also it says for pc AND x360 under the platforms listed. have you already worked out a deal with microsoft?

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Dropgunner
Dropgunner

Good Idea when it is going implemented. Its like the Idea from Unreal Tournament with the "Power Nodes". Your Idea is in that different, that these grids or notes can be destroyed, when the next node or grid is "secured". In UT you can only destroy the last node. In UT the function to destroy a node behind the lines of the conflict would not be so interesting because one team can win very fast the game. For you game it means, you schould design an enemy concept (Like the dynamic Infestation), that provides those win-win Situations or you damp the Concept, that the Marines can build an Building, that "storage" the energy for a amount of time. When the aliens cut the Grip, the marines have time to fix them, before the energy runs out.

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Shadow58
Shadow58

I was thinking along the lines of this:
Heat, since your meant to use the flame thrower for the infestation, this gives me the idea that a cold environment should make them thrive and hot environment should cause them to shrivel and die, hence the flamethrower. Now see you could include in rooms heaters, or some sort of exhaust for the power generators, that ultimately emit heat stoping infestation, but if the power goes off then the infestation can continue since the room would start to go cold and dark(dark, since there wouldn't be lights working once the lights are completely off). Hope this helps, it'll give perhaps a better logical explanation to how the whole power and infestation work and why they both can't be friendly and dwell amongst each other.

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