Detailed Analysis for BTT:TOD[Event]

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fladdermasken

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presents

Special Contest:
Detailed Analysis for Beyond the Throne: Tides of Darkness

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Participants are to write a detailed analysis for Kam's project: Beyond the Throne: Tides of Darkness

[Project Page]




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Kam


Tides of Darkness

"Hello,

My greatest obstacle as an altered melee author is finding detailed useful feedback.
My project has recently seen the addition of the final race I will be adding. With a
few more updates that race will be "complete". I would like to run a contest where
the goal is to provide me a detailed analysis of my project."


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Why we have decided to host this

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Beyond the Throne: Tides of Darkness (previously Orcs and Humans: Tides of Darkness) has been under continuous dedicated development for years, and we love to reward and show support for this level of commitment. In addition to this contest promoting people to reflect about what is and what isn't valuable feedback, Kam has also offered a $50 (USD) reward (further details here) for, by his own judgement, the best written feedback.


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The Contest

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The idea of the contest is to write a detailed analysis for the map. For further specifications, please see Contest Judging.

Additional info:
Kam said:
An unprotected version will not be made available. Use the current release version. If there is a particularly difficult unit to balance try using the WE to duplicate the unit and test it there.
I would expect those who compete would play actual games (no cheats) with human players, [highlight]the AI is no substitute and no way to balance a melee.[/code]

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  • No submission may violate any of the site rules.
  • Your submission must be posted before the deadline.
  • Teamwork is allowed but the monetary reward will not be increased.
  • Submissions must be private (in form of a private message) so that work is not shared between submissions.


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  • First Place: 25 reputation points and a USD$50 reward in the form of either
    • [
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      ] Amazon gift card
    • [
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      ] Steam game(s) as a gift valued up to the promised amount

  • Other Participants: 10 repuptation points as a participant award


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[highlight]The results will 100% be decided by Kam.[/code] Kam will individually take each entry and apply their suggestions to a copy of his map, and play with the changes. Due to there being money involved, submissions are to be detailed (read: unfinished/insubstantial submissions will be skipped over) and include, at least, the following:


  • Redundant units/abilities/spells and how/if they should be replaced
  • Overall racial theme adherence
  • Specific suggestions for replacements or alterations (actual products not required but will factor into scoring)
  • Cosmetics
I will not continue reviewing a submission that seems thrown together.


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The contest shall begin on November 19th and conclude on [highlight]February 1st[/code].

The results are preliminarily set to be out before February 15th.

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Appendices and Links

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Appended here is a slideshow of helpful links that provide information about the project, the lore of The Lost and an option for organizing games for teams to test the race together or simply play the map.

Project Page:
MOD DB Page:
Lore Page:
IRC for organizing games:
 
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Kam

Kam

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If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask.

If you are only able to partially complete the review but your content is far more thorough than someone who does 100% you may win. It still needs to be a fair portion of the units/spells/mechanics though.
 

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If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask.

This indeed is pretty interesting, however I am not sure if I have time for doing a real-in-depth review and feedback on your entire project. Also I have had my hands on it for very little time and never really played it that much (like I actually played any Warcaft III). However a entry might just appear from me.

Well however I have a guestion.
An unprotected version will not be made available. Use the current release version. If there is a particularly difficult unit to balance try using the WE to duplicate the unit and test it there.

I do have unprotected versions of around two or three of the BtT maps, can I still participate as it might be concidered unfair entry if I can open and lurk around the map files?

Edit: Actually nevermind, it seems I have deleted all the unprotected versions with anything in them.

However another guestion: Why you no update Severed Isles ;/

Who wants to play with me?! (I am not really experienced playing BtT (tried couple of times))
 
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Its hard to promise a complete in-depth review but I'll keep this in mind if I happen to find some time. Had played this a few times so I at least have some ideas in mind and I think we should also inform Ken-E about this since I'm pretty sure he already played this one before(we played once).

This thread should get more attention, BtT has been around for a long time now.
 
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Hi, I'd also like to give my review (its not for the $$$ but for you putting it out like that + nothing else to do. Its thanksgiving :)
 

Kam

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Hi, I'd also like to give my review (its not for the $$$ but for you putting it out like that + nothing else to do. Its thanksgiving :)

I appreciate any feedback you would like to give. Achieving a high level of balance is the best way to insure people enjoy my map.
 
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Hi.So many things to say .

I'm from china.
Trust me,
My advice to you is worth more than a passer-by advice 10 times.
If this is about the balance of Warcraft III,Maybe I was the highest level you can come into contact ,As we all konw ,only china still have best warcraft Pro gamers And various tournaments.
(I dont use English for many years. Express my meaning is very difficult,hope you can understand.
sorry for that.)
I made warcraft III MOD Nirvana , you can find Nirvana in MODDB too.( but it's Alpha virsion,
The latest version doesn't mean the same thing.I dont have time to make English virsion.)
Nirvana mod Add race BloodELF . naga ,goblin ,icetroll,etc(max can add 96 races) .
But I delete them ,only Add naga,because too many races/things can't balance it.
The more things you add/Design,the more difficult player to accept .
And bad for competition. Network broadcast. and spread your Map/mod.

---------------
ok , the above I said are very scattered.
now to your part.
[Beyond the Throne: Tides of Darkness]
Your maps are some kind of like The Tales of Raviganion.
Or I think ,till now, what most of the kinks you have been worked out is change four races
to new type race.
why I use change? Because you change warcraft's Rhythm.
Rhythm is the soul of RTS. spirit of competition .
In your Design/project, you Add The Navy ,change The tech tree, remove most air force and complicated buff units...
Every indicator can change the old warcraft's Rhythm.
Change races only can change Tactics and measures ,change other things ,It is not the same thing.
Set Disorder to avoid player battle (only can Attack creeps wasting time) and must use boat.
At least 5 minutes you cant know Enemy player are doing what.(you even dont have Any effective measures detect Enemy base. )
Naval battle was self-defeating ,we used new maps with boat/navy before in some warcraft competition,Whether the audience or game player are don't like it.
In my Opinion, navy system must made hero and units can fight on boat,not only sit in ,
can accept by people. or boat can only create imbalance .
peon can sit in boat Dig trees and make towers.boat can Transport catapults Ultra long distance Destroy buildings and peons.in consideration of your maps air force is so Later stage,
one battle is most Possible become a tower / catapults battle .Hero is useless.
Some Heros can sit in boat, fire trees and fire Peons/buildings.
etc..........

2. you change the Tech trees.for example, hum building research .It's very Strange for old players,to change this habit for many years. ,even if you want goes back to the warcraft II.people ,most people can't be used to it.I know that you got your reasons.

3.Rts need Arms Mutual cooperation,all I can see is units Increase attack point, Increase armor,
Including the hero. Can't believe 3 orc heros, they all have skills to kill people.12 skills all to kill units..For example, Hum heros, Archmage have Water Elemental to ward off,mountain King can
use hammer to Stun untis. they are like brothers . The death knight and lich are like Husband and wife. The wolf rides and grunt and Spirit Walker can form indestructible group....
------------------------------------------------->>>
so many things to say,if be entangled with The real Competitive .
I talk so much,only hope you can understand that ,If there is no deep Balance plot,The rest,
you only can retain players With the updated model art ,and updated more and more new things Frequently.Otherwise, Soon,players will drained ,Rts should have stifling and Bright Rhythm .
the one who played BTT maps should feel he can die every Minute .but not feel he can made some boat for fun. make boats fun/Interest can insist on after 100 Matches?
--------
now,we Go back to Reality,assume [Beyond the Throne: Tides of Darkness] is made for
Ordinary game player,till now [Beyond the Throne] is Alpha Alpha virsion.
The author only hopes his wisdom bring new joy to WarCraft lovers..
And anything can come to good after v4.0.0.0 :)
--
damn, sorry man,I'm sick, its too late, I've been rather ill lately.take Dozens of medicine pills everyday.
I may have some friends to test /play your map.and give you some Suggestions to Design really
RTS.
.
oh, dont forget my 50$~~ if I can get the money ,I can host c A map/mod contest .
 

SeedinAethyr

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Now, I don't want to put words in Kam's mouth, but I think some of you have the wrong idea about this contest. From what I gather, Kam wants the analyzers to focus heavily on the balance of Beyond The Throne: Tides Of Darkness. Kam knows that BtT: ToD is [somewhat] unbalanced, and he knows that it's very difficult work to achieve near-perfect balance. (Perfect balance is impossible.) That's the reason for the $50.00 prize; to act as an incentive and make people want to do the tedious job of balance testing. You guys need to take into account the gold costs, lumber costs, food costs, build times, stock start delays, restock times, bounties, attack damages, attack speeds, healths, health regnerations, armors, armor types, movespeeds, storage spaces, spells, mana costs, mana regenerations, and cooldowns, along with the techtree placements (Is a unit useless because it appears too late in the techtree? Is a unit overpowered because it can be built so early?), terrain considrations (Is a certain race at an advantage/disadvantage on one of the maps? Can a certain race abuse a map in some way? Are the creep camps and/or their item drops imbalanced?), researches (Is a certain research necessary? Does it need to provide more of a boost or cost less? Should it be further back or closer up in the techtree?), unit synergies (Kam has tried to make it so that his units synergize: does one unit not synergize, and should it be improved or replaced (and with what?)? Is the synergy between some units too strong? Does the synergy need to be stronger?), strategies (Are there strategies that are almost impossible to counter? (This would also be why you'd need to test the map with other people. The AIs, while good, have a somewhat inflexible strategy, wheras human players are adaptable and will have many different possible strategies.)), AI behavior (While Kam wants you to focus on the balance aspect, I'm sure that he'd also like it if you found bugs with the AI and told him about them and about how to fix them), and of course, any other bugs you can find (and how to fix them).
I'd also like to point out that Kam would like you guys to give suggestions. Propose a new/replacement unit idea! From my experience playing Beyond The Throne: Tides Of Darkness, the Tavern could use a new hero! Propose a new/replacement item idea! Propose a new game mechanic! Propose a bug fix! Propose an aesthetic change!
If any of this is not what Kam wants, I apologize. However, this is what I interpreted from the event description and this is what I would do. (I'll likely not participate; the amount of work will be more than substantial.)
 

Kam

Kam

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Now, I don't want to put words in Kam's mouth, but I think some of you have the wrong idea about this contest. From what I gather, Kam wants the analyzers to focus heavily on the balance of Beyond The Throne: Tides Of Darkness. Kam knows that BtT: ToD is [somewhat] unbalanced, and he knows that it's very difficult work to achieve near-perfect balance. (Perfect balance is impossible.) That's the reason for the $50.00 prize; to act as an incentive and make people want to do the tedious job of balance testing. You guys need to take into account the gold costs, lumber costs, food costs, build times, stock start delays, restock times, bounties, attack damages, attack speeds, healths, health regnerations, armors, armor types, movespeeds, storage spaces, spells, mana costs, mana regenerations, and cooldowns, along with the techtree placements (Is a unit useless because it appears too late in the techtree? Is a unit overpowered because it can be built so early?), terrain considrations (Is a certain race at an advantage/disadvantage on one of the maps? Can a certain race abuse a map in some way? Are the creep camps and/or their item drops imbalanced?), researches (Is a certain research necessary? Does it need to provide more of a boost or cost less? Should it be further back or closer up in the techtree?), unit synergies (Kam has tried to make it so that his units synergize: does one unit not synergize, and should it be improved or replaced (and with what?)? Is the synergy between some units too strong? Does the synergy need to be stronger?), strategies (Are there strategies that are almost impossible to counter? (This would also be why you'd need to test the map with other people. The AIs, while good, have a somewhat inflexible strategy, wheras human players are adaptable and will have many different possible strategies.)), AI behavior (While Kam wants you to focus on the balance aspect, I'm sure that he'd also like it if you found bugs with the AI and told him about them and about how to fix them), and of course, any other bugs you can find (and how to fix them).
I'd also like to point out that Kam would like you guys to give suggestions. Propose a new/replacement unit idea! From my experience playing Beyond The Throne: Tides Of Darkness, the Tavern could use a new hero! Propose a new/replacement item idea! Propose a new game mechanic! Propose a bug fix! Propose an aesthetic change!
If any of this is not what Kam wants, I apologize. However, this is what I interpreted from the event description and this is what I would do. (I'll likely not participate; the amount of work will be more than substantial.)

This is accurate.

I understand this is a great deal of work. This is why I have given until February 1st. I will also take submissions that are substantially complete. If you are a few units/spells/ideas/etc shy in your review and the material you submit is well done you will still be considered. Please do not think I am expecting professional developer review quality and allow that to keep you from competing.
 
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About the bug, I dont know if that's the right map or not but the naga sea witch charm didn't work multiple times. The altar has only sea witch and naga warrior heroes. That's all I can report. All the things SeedinAethyr told, I can't deal with those types of things.

EDIT: The charm was used on creeps and not enemy units.
 
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sentrywiz

S

sentrywiz

I will participate in the contest. I don't really care about the giftss, I don't live in the US for amazon to be viable and Steam sells a ton of crock anyway. However I do want to try GW2 so if that's possible somehow.. anyway I will give this a bash. Especially since I still play Warcraft 2 I might be favored in the balance department. I will also try to get a friend to play against but no promises

EDIT:

Okay, I've checked all the links provided but I cannot find a list for all the buildings/units/upgrades/spells with all the information that I require.

Therefor I require either of these:

- A list/file/table for all the units/buildings/upgrades/spells with ALL information provided
- Your map's object data (exported)
- Your map in open state

Originally Posted by Kam
An unprotected version will not be made available. Use the current release version. If there is a particularly difficult unit to balance try using the WE to duplicate the unit and test it there.

This will not hold water. Because you explicitly want a detailed review/description of your entire map, you CANNOT intentionally obscure relevant information.
Especially since this information is crucial when determining the balance of the map with ALL OF THE FACTORS.

I wouldn't ask this if I didn't really need it. It would be a pain to discover the attributes by playing the map, ALT-TAB to write information, rinse repeat a million times.
Plus the in-game UI obscures relevant information like stat progression for heroes, move/attackspeed, damage table etc.

This only makes my job hell lot tougher for a dumb reason (the author didn't want to share his precious map).
What am I gonna do, sell it on the black market?

I want your answer before I dedicate time on your map. Also if you think I'm being too harsh, you're right.
I take responsibility for being a jerk and I believe that my argument holds merit for both of us.
 
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Kam

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I will participate in the contest. I don't really care about the giftss, I don't live in the US for amazon to be viable and Steam sells a ton of crock anyway. However I do want to try GW2 so if that's possible somehow.. anyway I will give this a bash. Especially since I still play Warcraft 2 I might be favored in the balance department. I will also try to get a friend to play against but no promises

EDIT:

Okay, I've checked all the links provided but I cannot find a list for all the buildings/units/upgrades/spells with all the information that I require.

Therefor I require either of these:

- A list/file/table for all the units/buildings/upgrades/spells with ALL information provided
- Your map's object data (exported)
- Your map in open state



This will not hold water. Because you explicitly want a detailed review/description of your entire map, you CANNOT intentionally obscure relevant information.
Especially since this information is crucial when determining the balance of the map with ALL OF THE FACTORS.

I wouldn't ask this if I didn't really need it. It would be a pain to discover the attributes by playing the map, ALT-TAB to write information, rinse repeat a million times.
Plus the in-game UI obscures relevant information like stat progression for heroes, move/attackspeed, damage table etc.

This only makes my job hell lot tougher for a dumb reason (the author didn't want to share his precious map).
What am I gonna do, sell it on the black market?

I want your answer before I dedicate time on your map. Also if you think I'm being too harsh, you're right.
I take responsibility for being a jerk and I believe that my argument holds merit for both of us.

In the early years of this project it was stolen and a version with cheats and changes I would never have approved ended up on battle.net. Since then I have not released an unprotected version.

It is not necessary for this contest either. The kind of analysis I am asking you to do will require you to make lists, I would suggest using excel.
 
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Reward money as a prize for this contest really raises the stakes. The concept is indeed really interesting. But I am guessing you are looking for something really in-depth, not just a feedback like 'Awesome map, with cool set of units'; I am thinking of more like playtesting feedback than game site does its reviewing.

Overall, I find this interesting indeed...
 
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Kam

Kam

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Reward money as a prize for this contest really raises the stakes. The concept is indeed really interesting. But I am guessing you are looking for something really in-depth, not just a feedback like 'Awesome map, with cool set of units'; I am thinking of more like playtesting feedback than game site does its reviewing.

Overall, I find this interesting indeed...

Yes I am looking for in-depth feedback.
 

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Kam

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I shouldn't pick a nit, but while that's an excellent start, certain values (like Attack/Movespeed, regeneration, sight range, etc) aren't always standard & might be important.

I will think on this further but it should be apparent from gameplay if a unit has too high or low regeneration, or if a ground unit can see further than an air unit, etc.

How I would approach this contest is this:

-Create a new map
-Create new units with the stats I have given in the excel file
-Use this as a basis to test survivability when units fight without spell usage. Then test further.
Example: Does a Paladin win against a Magi 50% of the time? If not would it win 50% with the extra health Animal War Training grants? Should the Paladin lose more considering it can heal instantly? Should the Magi lose more because it can increase attack stats via Bloodlust?

This is also where having a partner becomes useful as you can play a game and set up scenarios like this with the real units.

You can use the max tech vote option to speed the process.
 

Deleted member 219079

D

Deleted member 219079

That's a lot of work for anyone, how about you distribute the 50 amongst the three best reviewers?
 

Kam

Kam

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That's a lot of work for anyone, how about you distribute the 50 amongst the three best reviewers?

That's not really worth it to win $16.

I suppose this is an additional way to weed out people that aren't serious. There is the possibility that you won't win the money and instead walk away with my gratitude and 10 rep. I'm not really worried about having enough contestants as I've already had three PM me and one post here.

And again, you need not review every single unit/ability/mechanic. If you complete 60% of the material but your content is far more thorough than the person who did 100% you will likely win.
 

Kam

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Should a Paladin win against a Magi 50% of the time? Further, is that something we should know/assume, or something we should determine?

Or was that a comparison/percentage just pulled out of thin air, to illustrate?

I was illustrating but I also questioned if it should be a 50/50 split.

To balance a game/mod properly you need an active player pool with at least above average players. Otherwise it will fail.

For many custom games this is a difficult issue. With an altered melee if you have players that do or did play ladder regularly they will be proficient here. While many of my units are new to WC3 they do stick to the basic WC3 paradigms (siege, heavy siege, melee, heavy melee, ranged, magic, hero). You should balance them against each other but within those restrictions.

Does the tech requirement and cost justify the unit? Is a unit underpowered by the time you can produce one? Can you produce it too soon? Does the Blaster do too much area damage when upgraded? Should heavy siege deal extra damage to sea units?

This is an exercise in critical thinking more than anything else. Use your RTS experience.
 

sentrywiz

S

sentrywiz

In the early years of this project it was stolen and a version with cheats and changes I would never have approved ended up on battle.net. Since then I have not released an unprotected version.

It is not necessary for this contest either. The kind of analysis I am asking you to do will require you to make lists, I would suggest using excel.

I don't need your unprotected version. But I do need some list of all your unit attributes, stats and sheer numbers. Its too much of a bother to make the list myself, I'd be wasting your time and mine just because you got burned and now you're suspicious of anyone.

Its your contest and you set the rules. However its my right if I want to participate to ask for tools and information. And right now, you obscure information intentionally that will not only make the analysis better but it will make my job faster and easier to test.

Its up to you. Any list of stats, attributes would do. Whether it be, unprotected map, object editor data, excel table, notepad list, HTML page...

But if you don't want to, that's fine. I'm sure there are other people who will be willing to help you without this information. I'm just not one of them
 

Retera

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While reading the argument about the exposure of unit data for BtT, I was taken by how terribly silly that argument was and exported the BtT unit data to an excel spreadsheet for anybody wishing to compete in this contest.

I tried to organize the data exactly as it appears in the editor -- there's a "Sheet" in excel for each of the sub-categories of unit data, like "Combat", "Stats", etc. From this, hopefully you can run any equations or calculations on the data that you would like. If that isn't enough, there's a "btt-core" sheet at the end with all the data collectively in one sheet, as well as a couple of other data fields I dropped into that sheet that weren't too useful or didn't fit anywhere.

The data is fairly true to how BtT plays and how the map editor data would probably be if we had an unprotected version, although the "race" on the units in Stats is "human", "orc", "lost", or "naga" depending on their corresponding race in the actual playing of BtT. I've shown an example of this in my attached image.

Just a disclaimer, I wrote the script that created this data with a hacked together handful of other tools from the hive and my computer's hard drive, and the data is not guaranteed to be accurate nor approved by Kam. Basically, I just sat down and had some fun coding. The data comes from the version of Ruined Lock that I downloaded on 12/3 and still has "Work in Progress" on the Hauler's requirements list.
(Methinks the script probably omitted some things like summoned units, too.)
 

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sentrywiz

S

sentrywiz

While reading the argument about the exposure of unit data for BtT, I was taken by how terribly silly that argument was and exported the BtT unit data to an excel spreadsheet for anybody wishing to compete in this contest.

I tried to organize the data exactly as it appears in the editor -- there's a "Sheet" in excel for each of the sub-categories of unit data, like "Combat", "Stats", etc. From this, hopefully you can run any equations or calculations on the data that you would like. If that isn't enough, there's a "btt-core" sheet at the end with all the data collectively in one sheet, as well as a couple of other data fields I dropped into that sheet that weren't too useful or didn't fit anywhere.

The data is fairly true to how BtT plays and how the map editor data would probably be if we had an unprotected version, although the "race" on the units in Stats is "human", "orc", "lost", or "naga" depending on their corresponding race in the actual playing of BtT. I've shown an example of this in my attached image.

Just a disclaimer, I wrote the script that created this data with a hacked together handful of other tools from the hive and my computer's hard drive, and the data is not guaranteed to be accurate nor approved by Kam. Basically, I just sat down and had some fun coding. The data comes from the version of Ruined Lock that I downloaded on 12/3 and still has "Work in Progress" on the Hauler's requirements list.
(Methinks the script probably omitted some things like summoned units, too.)

Not sure if you view the argument silly in my favor or against it. Still, you uploaded a data sheet, so I guess its the first.

Well, this is pretty sweet. Although I was expecting this from the host, not a random third party. But hey, better something than nothing. +rep for your awesome effort

My only question is -- is the data valid? I mean, was it taken from the map the host wants analyzed or it was composed by other means? Because it wouldn't be wise to analyze this and compose an introspection only to later find out most values are changed.
 

Retera

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Downloaded the latest version of Beyond the Throne on my computer to play it with a friend. We played a match to start to do some reviewing, I was enjoying the extensive sets of creative abilities on the units and the thought of how I might use them in battle, but we lost the game to an Access Violation when our armies actually engaged each other to fight.

I did the research and discovered that the source of the issue was Liquidate having air units added to its Targets Allowed list (transmute causes came crash when used on air units, apparently). But you can imagine losing our entire game to a crash was kind of sad because we lost the cool armies we'd been making.
 
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