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What about a random mission generator?

Posted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 6:10 pm
by n-drx
I'm quite sure no one has ever posted anything about this, correct me if I'm wrong. :wink:

That's just a thing that came to my mind tomorrow: wouldn't it be cool to be able to play random missions? Maybe with a difficulty level based on the level of the playing commander?

Posted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 6:30 pm
by Bob Janova
It would be cool, although I don't quite know how it would produce anything other than random squadrons. Would it spawn random objective craft as well? Imagine trying to defend a freighter with 5 enemy squadrons all over the map :shock: ...

Posted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 10:12 pm
by n-drx
It's something I haven't thought about yet... Yet it's a great idea! :wink:

It would produce random fleets (rather than single ships) of both enemy and friendly ships, and try to place them following some rules, so that they are not spread all over the map!

Posted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 10:16 pm
by Fighter_Ace
Too bad you can't just design a add-on "randomizer" and access it as an external program component. You'd ace that one 8) !

Posted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 10:24 pm
by n-drx
Actually it shouldn't be too difficult to program... :?
Let's just find the way to create random .mis files, and a rough RMG would be done!

Posted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 11:01 pm
by Fighter_Ace
I remember you saying something about using a "hex editor" to alter the game. Could you recommend a program to do just that?

Also, are the mission files internal or external :idea: ?

Posted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 11:54 pm
by n-drx
Fighter_Ace wrote:I remember you saying something about using a "hex editor" to alter the game. Could you recommend a program to do just that?

I myself use Hex Workshop, but it's not free.

However, there are lots of free hex editors, just google around and download some programs, try them and leave the one you prefer! :wink:

Fighter_Ace wrote:Also, are the mission files internal or external :idea: ?

The mission files have a ".mis" extension and are in the Missions subfolder of the Critical Mass folder! :)

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 12:04 am
by Fighter_Ace
Oww! *rubs eyes* Lots of ones and zeros :shock: ! Amazing you can work that stuff, n-drx! It totally baffles me that's for sure!

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 12:51 am
by sid6.7
it would be neat......yeah i tried to look using a hex editor
ya got to be good with hexidecimal's....:) and then ya got to know
what to do with them... :(

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 1:21 am
by Fusion_power
It won't work at present because CMass does not allow user control of the flotillas. You can create missions at will and on a random basis, they will be selected to fly. The problem is that the flotillas are a fixed and hard coded set of data. This is not the first time this general possibility has been discussed.

There are several improvements I'd like to see in CMass including full control of flotillas, ships, and missiles. It would be nice to have more missiles and maybe a "command" ship that would allow direct control of your wingmen.

A random mission generator would by default never be capable of setting up a more complex mission than the design limits of the random elements generated.

Fusion

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 1:31 am
by Fuzzy Wonky
That's what I thought...

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 10:16 pm
by n-drx
Fighter_Ace wrote:Oww! *rubs eyes* Lots of ones and zeros :shock: ! Amazing you can work that stuff, n-drx! It totally baffles me that's for sure!

sid6.7 wrote:it would be neat......yeah i tried to look using a hex editor
ya got to be good with hexidecimal's....:) and then ya got to know
what to do with them... :(

Actually, it's much easier than you might think! Image

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 11:01 pm
by n-drx
Fusion_power wrote:It won't work at present because CMass does not allow user control of the flotillas. You can create missions at will and on a random basis, they will be selected to fly. The problem is that the flotillas are a fixed and hard coded set of data. This is not the first time this general possibility has been discussed.

(...)

A random mission generator would by default never be capable of setting up a more complex mission than the design limits of the random elements generated.

You're right by saying that a random mission generator, at present, would be limited to the capabilities of the mission editor; yet this does not mean it wouldn't be useful.

The way I imagine it is the following:
- There should be rules for different mission types (at least: attack, ambush, destroy, defend, protect, reinforcement, war);
- The player should be able either to choose the mission type or to let the computer randomly choose it;
- Once the mission type is choosen, a random mission is generated following the rules of that mission type, and then weighted up with the current level of the commander (= # of credits).
- The rules for a mission type could include: % of friendly objectives, friendly fleets, enemy objectives, and enemy allied fleets; type of objectives (civilian, offensive); maybe allowed starting positions. This way, an attack mission would have no friendly objectives, some enemy objectives (civilian), some allied fleets (both friendly and enemy). A defend mission would be similar, but with friendly objectives (civilian) and without enemy objectives. An ambush mission would be similar to an attack one, but with offensive enemy objectives. A war mission, instead, would have enemy objectives (offensive) and allied friendly ships, without allied enemy fleets and friendly objectives.

I'd love to translate this into a program, yet it's not very easy! Image

Posted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 12:16 pm
by Fuzzy Wonky
n-drx wrote:The way I imagine it is the following:
- There should be rules for different mission types (at least: attack, ambush, destroy, defend, protect, reinforcement, war);
- The player should be able either to choose the mission type or to let the computer randomly choose it;
- Once the mission type is choosen, a random mission is generated following the rules of that mission type, and then weighted up with the current level of the commander (= # of credits).
- The rules for a mission type could include: % of friendly objectives, friendly fleets, enemy objectives, and enemy allied fleets; type of objectives (civilian, offensive); maybe allowed starting positions. This way, an attack mission would have no friendly objectives, some enemy objectives (civilian), some allied fleets (both friendly and enemy). A defend mission would be similar, but with friendly objectives (civilian) and without enemy objectives. An ambush mission would be similar to an attack one, but with offensive enemy objectives. A war mission, instead, would have enemy objectives (offensive) and allied friendly ships, without allied enemy fleets and friendly objectives.

Hehehe, that is all pretty interesting... :D

Posted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 2:01 pm
by Fuzzy Wonky
Fusion_power wrote:...CMass does not allow user control of the flotillas. (...) There are several improvements I'd like to see in CMass including full control of flotillas...

I'd like it too. As of today there's not much difference in authority between a lieutenant and an admiral. That's a bit strange. :? Furthermore there's no real possibility to have allied different squadrons coordinate or combine their action either. I often happen to regret there is no such tactical possibility. :(
IMO that's indeed a matter to wonder about with a view to a future CM version. :roll: May be some optional choices only should be offered (so as to allow players to keep the present game as it is -- for all those that like it so and want no change).