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Nigel

Contest idea: Multiplayer Siege That

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Over the Christmas holidays I have started to think about an idea for a new contest or MP event (it could be either, but I only have permissions to open a new therad in this section. Please, admins, feel free to move the thread wherever it fits best). I exchanged some emails with Lord Vetka on this topic and he encouraged me to open a thread to discus it with all of you guys.

 

 

 

The idea is inspired by the Siege That competitions of Stronghold 1, that are held at Stronghold Heaven.

Just to summarize what that is: one player designs a castle in the map editor, including troops and all that is needed for a scenario, and uploads it. He then challanges other players to siege that castle. Other players can download the map and see if they can beat it with the troops/gold, that has been provided for the attacking army.

 

 

 

I am toying with the idea of setting up a Multiplayer Siege That competition. With the new possibilites of the SHC2 map editor, that should be doable and the battle in MP should be much more interesting and fun than SP.

 

 

The way it would work is, that I build a castle on a free build landscape (including defending troops), post some pictures of it on the forums and ask for challengers who want to attack this castle in a multiplayer game. The attacker will be given a certain amount of gold and can choose himself, which troops to buy. I will then add those troops to the map in the map editor (recruiting new troops is disabled) and we meet online to see if he can capture the castle with the troops he has chosen.

 

Each player could get 3 attempts to assault the castle.

1. On the first assault he only knows the castle from the screenshot that is posted plus any information that may be given in text form (by his spies). He gets the map when we meet online and that is the first time he can see it all.

2. If he does not succeed, he can try again. Now he has the full map available and can take, say, 1 week to study it and design a new strategy.

3. If he still does not succeed, he will be given a larger amount of money to build a stronger army for his third assault.

 

 

 

This could be run as a short contest with a single castle - and the first to beat it, wins the contest.

But if it works well, it could be a longer series with different castles (once I have been beaten, I will rebuild the castle bigger and stronger xD ). We could go up to, say, 5 castles. They could be all on the same map/landscape or if we are very productive in map making, they could be on different landscapes. For winners, we could just give a celebration to each lord or lady who captures a castle, or if we do want an overall winner, it could be the one who captured most castles with least number of assaults and most surviving men. I am sure we can work out a good way to determine the Greatest Conqueror.

Edited by Nigel

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Although I don't have Crusader 2, I like your idea, and I hope other will like it as well! :) If you decide to make this happen with any of the game I own, I would join - same applies to Crusader 2 if I get it. :) I ain't sure if I would have enough powerful PC for Stronghold 3 multiplayer, but I could try.

 

I do realize this is for Crusader 2, so I will just back off for now, but I liked the idea, so I had to say it. :)

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I like this idea. I just wonder what is the goal of the map creater? Creating a castle which can't be sieged or a castle which makes fun to siege and looks nice?


TeamMuppet.eu

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I am glad you guys like it.

 

Micha!, I think it is more important that the castles are fun to siege and also good and natural looking. It should be challanging but not to the point where it gets frustrating. Perhaps we can start with an easy castle and get more difficult as we go forward.

 

Basically, in this game it is the attacking lords who compete against each other - not the map creator against the attacking lords.

(that could also be interesting, but it would be a different kind of game)

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I like this idea! Perhaps for Crusader 2 we should have someone make a template map on which we can each try to build a castle and destroy each others' most efficiently? I know Vetka and Micha are both skilled with the Stronghold editors, but perhaps a competition within another competition would entail who can make the best template map, who can make the best castle, and who is the best attacker? All suggestions, of course, but I am glad to see the Siege-That mode (or an improvised version of it in SHC2) get some attention. :)


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I also like this idea, maybe we could set up and entire monthly competition or something on this - and rather than just any old castle created, how about doing castles from around the world?


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I like the idea as well, I'm not really into multiplayer, but I'm in for making the map and castle.

 

Thinking about maybe have a map that the castle is rebuilt harder for each event, how about if I make one map with a basic castle,(map 1), then when the player has completed the map, they move on to the next map, same map and castle as the first one, but a slightly upgraded castle,(map 2), then they would move onto the next upgraded map, could be 5 maps or more or less maps. The castle can be made in layers, new layers added for each level.

 

To have to add the troops into the map in the editor for each player would be a pain, to setup the player so they could buy what they want for a certain amount of gold would work better, it would not be hard to setup the map for it, the players position can have every thing they need to buy what ever types of armies they can for say 20,000 gold, the amount of gold could be increased for each new level.

 

The map could be made as a multiplayer map, then one person, probably Nigel could be the defending Lord, and each player would have to go against a live player in the castle.

 

I see a lot of good ideas for further contests and challenges, this is a siege that topic, so maybe we could stay on the subject at hand for now, a new thread can be made for contest ideas. Glad to see people liking more contests!

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Thanks for all the good and encouraging feedback, guys.

I think it is fair to say: we have a new project :D

 

 

Lord Vetka, your idea to set up the attacker so, that he can recruit his troops in the actual game, sounds interesting. I would like to explore that further. Can you actually give different amounts of starting gold to different players in the map editor? If not, perhaps it can be done by placing a resource stash of gold in the camp of the attacker. He can then pick it up and recruit his troops with that money.

 

 

Also, it is good to see that several map makers seem to be interested.

This is great. I think I would never say that I can have too many maps for this game. If you guys have ideas and want to get started on a landscape, by all means do. We can think a bit more what the requirements for the castles should be, but really for landscapes anything goes. So feel free to go ahead and there will certainly be a place for it.

 

 

I will be happy to act as the defending lord in the mulitiplayer battles, but if someone feels that he wants to take charge of defending his castle himself, I have no objections. It may be worth while putting a 3rd player position on the maps somewhere at the side where it is out of the way. That way we will have a "spectator's slot" available and another staff member, referee or just a spectator can join the game.

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We just need to think of Mangols and Trebuchets. They are very powerfull in this game so maybe it's a good idea to strict them (like szenario invasion which will give a x amount).


TeamMuppet.eu

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Sounds like a great idea, I like it.

 

I'm slightly confused, you said whoever completes the siege first wins. If you need to place the troops for that player, wouldn't whoever the map was given to first, have a head start? Perhaps it should be the fastest time to kill the enemy lord? Or maybe I am just confused :)


"Gofyn wyf am galon hapus, calon onest, calon l?n."

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I agree with Mathew. For me it is also more logical for each of us to have limited number of attempts - one, or two, or three... And to take fastest time; or instead of that to have something similar to score in Stronghold 1 - percentage of troops lost is counted there as well. We can make a formula. :)

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Well, my initial idea was like this (but we need to think it through to make sure it makes sense):

 

I will post the "mission" on the forums (could be several forums, it would be nice to invite other players from SHH or the official C2 forum to join in).

 

Let's say player A is the first to sign up.

It goes on a first come first serve basis, so player A gets the to be the first one to try an assault.

If he fails, he can try again but for his second assault he has 1 week pause time (in which he can look at the map and make a plan for his second assault, and heal his wounds).

 

If another player (B) signs up during that week, he gets the chance to play his battle before player A has his second attempt.

The same goes for the third attempt.

 

 

I have no idea how many players we will get to sign up. If there is lot (like 5 players signing up within a weeek) we could make a list on a first-come-first-serve basis and if player A looses his first attempt he moves to the back of the line behind player E before he can have is second attempt.

 

Of course if there are really a lot of player who want to play, this does not work anymore (waiting in a line of 20 people is just no fun). In that case we would really need to think of something else.

 

 

 

And Micha!, good point about the trebuchets and mangonels.

I think with this game we can restrict it to whatever we feel like. We could also say: max 3 dervishes or no fire carts. I am not sure if that is what we want, but restricing the trebs and mangonel towers certainly sounds like a good idea.

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If he fails, he can try again but for his second assault he has 1 week pause time (in which he can look at the map and make a plan for his second assault, and heal his wounds).

 

If he can look at the map, what's to stop him from trying it?

 

Of course if there are really a lot of player who want to play, this does not work anymore (waiting in a line of 20 people is just no fun). In that case we would really need to think of something else.

 

How about each person gets a go (or x tries) and the person who completes it in the lowest amount of time will win if it comes to that?


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I have done a bit of testing, if a player is given the red estate then it can be setup with gold and goods, the enemy castle can be setup on a blue estate and observers can be setup on the other colors. A skirmish map for MP.

 

I can give as much as 100,000 gold plus the amount given in game, default 1000, up to 1000 units of food items each, same for candles and ale, the economy is setup with enough goods that the player does not need any economy or building as far as it goes, I placed 4 houses the Inn and Church and had a steady stream of 40 villagers to make troops with, placed all of the buildings for making an army, barracks, siege camp, mercenary post, and armory, the inn and church are there for popularity. Granary to keep the peasants in line!

 

My question would be how hard of a castle would you want to start with, I did some testing here as well, I had a basic castle of 4 walls 4 medium towers one in each corner and one gate, the next castle has the same thing but larger towers on each corner with walls to match, and just kept adding more until I had 5 test castles from one base.

 

Also do you want the castle built on level ground or shall we make it interesting? Same for the castle square or interesting!

 

If we have 5 maps with increasing difficult castles, maybe the win could be how far can a player get, each level is harder until it can't be won any more.

 

And as the enemy castle keeper, are you wanting to be able to make troops and do repairs to your castle?

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As I am thinking about it, I am getting more and more away from my initial idea. It is too complicated if we really get many players and would be disappointing for those who do not get to play, just beccause they don't sign up fast enough.

 

We should have something which allows every player to get a go (or x goes) and then find some way to figure out who did best.

 

One thought would be to give points for defeating a castle:

3 points for winning at first try

2 points for winning at second try (after having had time to review the map)

1 point for winnning at third try (after getting some more money).

 

Then, if we have a draw, we could look at who needed least game days, least gold or who had the best surviver ratio.

 

Lord Vetka, your idea of making the maps increasingly harder and seeing who gets through farthest is also nice. I will think about it (and will be happy to hear other people's opinion).

 

 

To your other questions: I thing we should make the castles interesting. Some could be on hills, there could be concentric rings of defences, perhaps with the inner ring on elevated ground (like a motte and baily). There could be a stone inner ring and a wooden palisade as outer defence. Many different opportunities. Also, castle buildings could be added, but for decoration only (or to provide "natural" obstacles and arrow protection for the streetfighting).

 

As defending lord I should get certain starting troops, but should not be able to recruit new troops or repair walls. We do not want this to be never-ending battles (maybe 20 - 40 minute games). Both attacker and defender have to use their resources wisely, as they won't get new ones.

Edited by Nigel

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Hey, but how about this one! We make a map like on Risiko, and we make everything as a turn based game. If there are some Rise of Nations game fans here, then they would remember that this is what Conquer the World campaign is based on. I will elaborate:

  • first we make a map: with cities, and roads between them. To make it more interesting, we can make there don;t have to be roads between each too cities;
  • we use some random function to mix players, and to give each player one city;
  • in each turn each player can attack one city: if the attacker wins, he conquers the city; but if the city is the starting city of the player who lost it, he has one more chance to set it free (just because we don't want someone to be taken out too easily in those first battles);
  • if someone owns more cities, he can attack any city that is next to his
  • each player is out if he loses his first city
  • last man standing is the winner

I'm not saying that this is the best idea possible, but it's something. :) Hehe, also now you know who used to play Risiko a lot when he was a kid. :D

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This to me is what would make the best sense.

 

Option 1:

-People playtest the map to see the minimum amount of troops needed to complete, making it a difficult game and hence more exciting

-The minimum amount of troops are placed, all players will use the same troops and starting goods to siege

-Slightly different from Nigel's idea. You must play the map 3 times. If you complete the mission say in 20 minutes for example, 3 points, 25 minutes is 2 points, then 30+ is 1 point.

-Whoever has the highest score at the end wins.

 

If there is a tie:

-Whoever completed the mission in the fastest time would then take the lead and be victorious

 

Option 2:

-People playtest the map to see the minimum amount of troops needed to complete, making it a difficult game and hence more exciting

-The minimum amount of troops are placed, all players will use the same troops and starting goods to siege

-Keeping with Nigel's idea. 3 tries maximum (you may play once if you wish). If you play the map once, the time you completed it, is your final time. Play anymore than once then it goes off the average time. For example:

Try 1= 20 minutes

Try 2= 22 minutes

Try 3= 21 minutes

 

20+22+21?3=21 minutes

 

-Whoever has the fastest time overall will win

 

So the penalty of replaying the map comes with a slightly higher time than what you'd think.

Let me know what you think :)

Edited by Mathew Steel

"Gofyn wyf am galon hapus, calon onest, calon l?n."

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Thanks for those comments, ideas and suggestions, guys.

 

 

Matthew, your idea is good if you want to see time-to-win as the most important factor.

To me it is not all about time (I don't like rush games, I guess I am more a chess kind of person). For this game I would like other things to be more important. For expample, saving your mens lives or finding ways to need less money.

 

Another thing is, while giving everyone the same starting army is very fair and good for competitive gaming, I am attracted to the idea that everyone can build his individual army. Thats part of the strategy.

 

But you have a very good point when you say that we should do some playtesting and find out what is the minimum gold needed - even if it is just approximately. We definitely want to avoid that - even for the early, small castles, the players can just overrun them without and effort. So for the small castles, they should get less gold (close to the minimum), and it should still be an exciting battle.

 

 

 

 

And EaglePrince, I know this "Risiko" game that you refer to. I have played it in the past - a very good game.

I think such an empire building game could be done with SHC2. I have seen it done with other games. It is really good fun, but it also takes a lot of work for management and administration of the offline part of the game.

 

I want to take a small step first and walk before I try to run. Let's see how the Siege-That game works out. If it goes really well, we can then try something new - and it could be something like you have mentioned above :)

Edited by Nigel

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Maybe this may appeal to you more:

 

Option 1:

-Playtest the map to find minimum resources needed, gold should be slightly higher than the minimum needed to allow more variety

-Everyone has the same amount of resources to start

-The player isn't able to gain any more gold, this way everyone has the same amount of gold and the same troop availability without the need of you to place the troops then send the map

-Players with the fewest troops/death ratio who complete the map win (by calculating the amount of troops/death ratio, it wont matter if one player uses 100 men and another uses 200)

 

In the unlikely case of a tie:

-Starting gold is decreased and players must replay the map, same rules apply

 

Option 2:

-Playtest the map in order to discover minimum starting good to complete the mission

-Again, everyone has the same starting goods

-Players start with the same troops

-Players may recruit new troops and also gain gold, only from taking over castles where gold piles may be collected

-Same rule applies, the winner is decided on the troops/death ratio

 

Again in the unlikely event of a tie:

-Players start with less troops

-Gold piles have decreased gold

-Same rule in order to win applies

 

Hopefully one of these options are more suited to you :)


"Gofyn wyf am galon hapus, calon onest, calon l?n."

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Excellent stuff, Matthew.

This is the direction I want to go :cool:

 

 

Both options sound very good and are capturing well what I would like to achieve.

I am leaning towards option 1, but I will think about it some more over the weekend.

 

But yes, this is the sort of discussion I was hoping to get. :)

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What Mathew suggested indeed sounds good. :)

 

By the way, what we may forbid here are shields, or at least we could limit their number? I don't know yet how effective they are in Crusader 2, but if they are as effective as they are in Crusader 1, that wouldn't work well, and many could simply combine archers and shields, and just sit back, and enjoy the "show". :) Besides that, I'm not sure if they fixed the exploit by which shields from the ground were providing protection to troops on towers.

 

Also, we may leave some wood and iron for traps and pitch for defending player to place it as he wants. What do you think about that?

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From what I know shields aren't as powerful as Crusader 1. A small group of crossbowmen can easily take out 20 shields in 30+ seconds. Combined with archers and traps, shields shouldn't be overpowered.

 

I'm glad you like the suggestions. Perhaps we could have a poll to see what others think is the best option? :)


"Gofyn wyf am galon hapus, calon onest, calon l?n."

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I now have a map and will do some detail on it then add in some defenses, give it a test and send it over to Nigel for his approval, don't forget, this is Nigels project, lets try and follow along.

 

I have been thinking of how this will work, one thing is, if someone is doing defense duties in the castle, then that will change the outcome for each player, it's not needed, but Nigel if you want to do the defending that is fine, just saying.

 

I have done some testing already, the amount of gold will be set and goods could be traded, I put weapons and goods and food in the siegers camp, they could sell the goods for more gold. Maybe it would be better to give a certain amount of gold and no goods, the player would have to buy weapons to make his armies.

 

Any way we divvy out the gold will be the same for every player, we need to figure out which way to go.

 

Nigel, I have done contests and watched others for quite a while now here and at HG, we only ever get a few contestants, 2-3 5 if your lucky, but, that last online contest did bring in more players!

 

Maybe to make it interesting, the winner would need the least amount of enemy troops killed for the win, you get the win by killing the Lord, but the least amount of troops killed will be the win in the contest. I do believe that would slow the game down a bit, getting more to what you are looking for Nigel.

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So many good ideas here - great.

It is almost difficult to make a decision :D

 

 

Matthew, there are good things in both of your options.

What I find attractive in oprion 2 is, that we can give some pre-determined troops to the players and they have to adjust their strategy to the scenario and cannot just use their favourite combo in every battle (trebuches with horse archers seem to be quite the fashion these days).

 

What I would like to do is to start with free to choose armies for the first two smaller castles. Then, as the castles get bigger we can say: "King Richard is sending you some troops to support your attack". The they can use these troops and supplement them with troops of their own choosing from the money they get.

 

 

EaglePrince, the idea of giving some iron and pitch to allow the defender to set some traps during the battle is also a good idea.

 

 

And Lord Vetka, you are probably right when you estimate the player numbers to be in the lower single digits. I would consider it a success if we get 5 or more players. But that's ok; I should be able to handle those number of games on my own. I would probably draw the line at 10 players. More than that and you would hear me shouting for help. :)

 

It is true that we may get a different result if different lords defend the castle. But as I said above, it should be fine for me to do it all, as long as the player numbers are not too high. Having said that, Micha!, you have made quite a name for yourself as a very good player. It would be the cherry on top of the cake, if you would take charge of defending the castle for the final level :)

 

 

But there is still plenty of time to think about that. For now, the thing to do is to get the first castle off the ground.

Lord Vetka, I look forward to seeing what you have done with the map editor. I should have time during this week to look at it and try it out.

Edited by Nigel

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Good news, I have a map or 3, 3 versions of the same map, I sent them to you today.

 

The skirmish map does not seam to work the way we want, the free build map can be exploited by being able to add 500 gold anytime, the invasion map is controllable but you would not be able to play along, that we have to test online.

 

Take a look at my example and lets see where we go from there.

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