Updated* : Recon Satellite mod + Command Line Interface

General discussion about Defcon

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Postby OpenFlow » Thu Jul 26, 2012 7:04 pm

SpitJock wrote:OK - I'm not normally a pedantic person, but I feel that it's best to sort this out so no-one new to Defcon gets confused:

What OpenFlow is talking about is NOT a mod - it's a recompilation (with changes/additions) of the game code which alters the mechanics and adds features. I know other games behave differently, but in Defcon a mod is a set of graphical, sound, text and positional data changes which change how the game looks and feels. A Defcon mod makes no alterations to game mechanics whatsoever.

In essence, a mod is a transformation you apply to your normal everyday Defcon installation. What OpenFlow offers is a different Defcon installation. (Bert called his version minicom - how about maxicom for yours, OF?) [/Pedantry]


On the subject of roll-up of features itself, might I make a suggestion?

The best way is for it all be rolled into one re-compile of the game code when the coding's all done, and then modified by text-based config file (the way minicom does it) at run-time. Perhaps even just add some options to the "Advanced Setup" dialog in game... That way, if you want long-range sub launches, but no MIRVs or doomsday weapon, just switch one on and others off... simples. Much more simple than having 16 different versions of the game installed (and that's just for the various combos of the 4 new features that were already discussed).


I am sort of curious about something too, OpenFlow. With the addition of MIRVs, doomsday weapons, fire-n-forget certain-kill anti-shipping missiles, long-reach sub launches and reduced AA efficacy.... How does anyone actually win the game? We play 1v1, you fire your weapons and I fire mine, no-one survives - a draw! Most people play a game like Defcon because they want to win - is there some feature you've not told us about yet that still makes that possible? Right now, it looks like the only way anyone could actually be beaten is if they go to the toilet before Defcon 1 and don't return until they've lost all their weapons platforms... It would change the tag-line of the game.

No longer: "Everybody loses, but who loses least?"
But now: "Everybody shits, but some people do it at personally inconvenient times and take a long time over it..."

And if the aim is just to watch the world consumed in nuclear fire (let's face it, we all want that) - why bother re-coding at all? Fill the map with CPU enemies, use CheatEngine to spam up a ton of silos that never run out of ICBMs and drop 30 warheads on every enemy city and installation on the map...

SJ



The best way is for it all be rolled into one re-compile of the game code when the coding's all done, and then modified by text-based config file (the way minicom does it) at run-time. Perhaps even just add some options to the "Advanced Setup" dialog in game... That way, if you want long-range sub launches, but no MIRVs or doomsday weapon, just switch one on and others off... simples. Much more simple than having 16 different versions of the game installed (and that's just for the various combos of the 4 new features that were already discussed).


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This definitely isn't out of the question. I've thought about this myself. Granular control of gaming dynamics with individual adjustments to values in the setup  menu and/or applying "preset" themes... good idea since there would only need to be one such Defcon install and everyone's different mods or versions or flavors can fit into it... and whoever hosts the game gets to retain control of what version or flavor of Defcon they want everyone to play. But at this point I haven't implemented enough features and things I want to do to warrant spending time on something like this.



I am sort of curious about something too, OpenFlow. With the addition of MIRVs, doomsday weapons, fire-n-forget certain-kill anti-shipping missiles, long-reach sub launches and reduced AA efficacy.... How does anyone actually win the game? We play 1v1, you fire your weapons and I fire mine, no-one survives - a draw! Most people play a game like Defcon because they want to win - is there some feature you've not told us about yet that still makes that possible? Right now, it looks like the only way anyone could actually be beaten is if they go to the toilet before Defcon 1 and don't return until they've lost all their weapons platforms... It would change the tag-line of the game.


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It is all about maintaining a balance of power to strike a sweetspot in gameplay. I understand what you are trying to convey and I agree you are correct... However I'm making these changes first and foremost for my own personal enjoyment and satisfaction with the game. I understand my tastes may not reflect the taste of the general gaming community at large, and that is perfectly okay with me. Regardless of whether or not the defcon community adapts (my wishful thinking) or even approves of what I am doing, I'm doing this with the primary intent of satisfying my own amusement and everything else is secondary. If someone else wants to use parts of the code or likes a certain idea or functionality or feature, then great. But if not, that's okay too. In a nutshell, to me the whole point of nuclear warfare is credible deterrence and even some element of asymmetric warfare. The sort of tweaks that I'm making will morph Defcon into a game that noobies will have deterrence over elites. I concede that most people do not find this fascinating but I think the maintenance of a stable power dynamic is more fun to watch than "nukes flying around all over the place". A nuclear warfare game doesn't necessarily have to have a lot of "nuclear" action to be entertaining. But that's just me. You might beg to differ.


No longer: "Everybody loses, but who loses least?"
But now: "Everybody shits, but some people do it at personally inconvenient times and take a long time over it..."


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Sorry... I don't understand what you mean by this? Your "toilet" analogy is precluding the possibility of the implementation of a "Deadhead" for when an opponent team does a first strike while you are away from the computer... such a feature will automatically retaliate in kind and perhaps with some sort of preset limited or major attack options (focusing on population or units, etc) and of course, all else fails, the doomsday weapon could be made to be underground and impenetrable and basically an always available, instant-on, option. And besides, its really hard to "lose all your weapons platforms" when subs have unlimited striking range and carry MIRVs. Now that subs can be anywhere in the world and strike anyplace in the world and two mirvs can take out 80% of an entire continent's population, your concern isn't really founded. 




And if the aim is just to watch the world consumed in nuclear fire (let's face it, we all want that) - why bother re-coding at all? Fill the map with CPU enemies, use CheatEngine to spam up a ton of silos that never run out of ICBMs and drop 30 warheads on every enemy city and installation on the map...


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Again I think you've misunderstood my intent. It is NOT about watching the world consumed in nuclear fire, on the contrary if I do it right, no nukes will ever go off. My interest in Defcon as a game is to use it to explore (however unrealistically - yes I know it is an arcade game) the "credible deterrence" and "asymmetric" aspect of nuclear warfare. The CPU/AI simply isn't smart enough to understand the sort of nuances and depths that only humans can portray. Hence why Defcon is largely a multiplayer game and diplomacy is only available in online mode.
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Postby roflamingo » Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:50 pm

Effectively a game that no one else will play because
1- its not on the main code path
2- you cant win
3- its not interesting

So what we have here is the loneliest, angriest man in Defcon holding up his handiwork shouting ***LOOK AT ME*** and then expounding mercilessly about why what he has created is interesting.

Except, no one cares.

The only reason I care about this at all is for humanitarian reasons. Please stop giving energy to Defcon and the surrounding community, because it's CLEARLY DEAD and you've ALIENATED EVERYONE you've met. Your first step to getting help, is to help yourself - and to get out of here and move on with life...

Cheers!
--rofl
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Postby OpenFlow » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:18 pm

roflamingo wrote:Effectively a game that no one else will play because
1- its not on the main code path
2- you cant win
3- its not interesting

So what we have here is the loneliest, angriest man in Defcon holding up his handiwork shouting ***LOOK AT ME*** and then expounding mercilessly about why what he has created is interesting.

Except, no one cares.

The only reason I care about this at all is for humanitarian reasons. Please stop giving energy to Defcon and the surrounding community, because it's CLEARLY DEAD and you've ALIENATED EVERYONE you've met. Your first step to getting help, is to help yourself - and to get out of here and move on with life...

Cheers!
--rofl



1- its not on the main code path

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Not being on the main code path does not effectively equate to "no one else" being able to play it. On the contrary, I would beg to differ. As I have already mentioned, my primary goal in doing this is for my own enjoyment. Even if a small handful of online or network players joined it would suffice for me from an effective and enjoyment standpoint. Conversely, even being on the code path is no guarantee it would become massively popular.  So in my opinion, your point is effectively moot.


2- you cant win

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That entirely depends on the definition of "winning". Indeed, I would make the assertion that under a different dynamic it is very possible to create a structural-tension scenario whereby "everyone wins" (as opposed to Defcon's "Everybody Dies") And that this sort of "winning" could be and would be even more satisfying than winning by means of "losing the least". 


3- its not interesting

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That is your opinion. You are entitled to your own opinion just as I am entitled to mine. I have already stated as much in the aforementioned paragraphs and explanations above. (see above post) The fact that you do not find it interesting has no bearing on my enjoyment of the enhanced features and tweaks. It also does not infer that no one else will find my enchantments interesting.



Except, no one cares.

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Except, you seemed to have cared enough to make it a point to tell me that no one cares. I hope the supreme irony isn't lost on you. Except, I do care. And that is sufficient.



The only reason I care about this at all is for humanitarian reasons. Please stop giving energy to Defcon and the surrounding community, because it's CLEARLY DEAD and you've ALIENATED EVERYONE you've met. Your first step to getting help, is to help yourself - and to get out of here and move on with life...


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Irrelevant to the topic and the thread. I welcome your constructive criticism but you are in no position to give me orders. As long as I abide by the forum rules I am entitled to post and express whatever I want to post and express and as are you. You are within your rights to ask that I stop giving energy to Defcon just as I am within my rights to continue to give energy to whatever game or endeavor I so choose and to ask that you stay on topic while in my thread please... Thank you. 
Last edited by OpenFlow on Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby roflamingo » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:02 pm

If I sent you $250 would you agree to shut the fuck up forever?
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Postby Laika » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:05 pm

Don't feed the troll.
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Postby xander » Fri Jul 27, 2012 3:31 pm

Laika_rus wrote:Don't feed the troll.

But he looks so hungry and lonely. :(

xander
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Postby SpitJock » Fri Jul 27, 2012 6:22 pm

I'm don't think OpenFlow's thread here is intended to be trollish. (troll-ism? trolly?)

I admit, the idea of a wargame in which no shots are fired isn't my cup of tea, but I can see it might hold some interest for a few people out there. Perhaps only one person (OpenFlow himself), but we'll never know that if we just keep dumping on the idea... Perhaps if people find the thread, the idea, or the person objectionable the best course of action is to quietly ignore it? I mean - I know my neighbour listens to BoyZone - but ranting to her or others about it only serves to make me look undignified...

And I am curious to see the finished product, because some little part of my soul DOES want to see the world burn... I grew up through some of the scarier bits of the cold war - well after Cuba, but Reagan and Thatcher managed to scare the crap out of us more than once...) I learned what nuclear weapons did and what full-scale nuclear warfare meant when I was seven years old, and from then until my late-to-mid-teens, I genuinely did not expect to live to full adulthood in a world where green grass still grew. A couple of decades and some later, bits of my psyche are still picking up the pieces. (true story)

So if OpenFlow's re-coding lets me play that out in different ways from regular Defcon, I say hurrah. It won't be Defcon any more, but it won't stop me playing Defcon (I quite like the game, especially now I know I can beat noobs and learn from masters) and if it gives me something else to mess about with one boring night, why would I complain about it? I'm quite looking forward to trying it out when it's ready, just for the fun of it, and I applaud OpenFlow for putting in the effort. FWIW, I'm two thirds through writing a mod (yes, just a mod - no re-coding involved) that possibly everyone will hate, but I'll still post it when it's ready because maybe *someone* will get some passing enjoyment from it, and that'll enhance the satisfaction I got from the creation process. If some people want to get all bent out of shape about it - well - the degree to which I won't care will be legendary. :D

My advice, OpenFlow, is to proceed in similar vein. If people don't like it, they don't have to eat it. **Although, really dude - it's going to be taken more seriously and viewed with less suspicion if changelogs are available**

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Postby OpenFlow » Fri Jul 27, 2012 7:42 pm

SpitJock wrote:I'm don't think OpenFlow's thread here is intended to be trollish. (troll-ism? trolly?)

I admit, the idea of a wargame in which no shots are fired isn't my cup of tea, but I can see it might hold some interest for a few people out there. Perhaps only one person (OpenFlow himself), but we'll never know that if we just keep dumping on the idea... Perhaps if people find the thread, the idea, or the person objectionable the best course of action is to quietly ignore it? I mean - I know my neighbour listens to BoyZone - but ranting to her or others about it only serves to make me look undignified...

And I am curious to see the finished product, because some little part of my soul DOES want to see the world burn... I grew up through some of the scarier bits of the cold war - well after Cuba, but Reagan and Thatcher managed to scare the crap out of us more than once...) I learned what nuclear weapons did and what full-scale nuclear warfare meant when I was seven years old, and from then until my late-to-mid-teens, I genuinely did not expect to live to full adulthood in a world where green grass still grew. A couple of decades and some later, bits of my psyche are still picking up the pieces. (true story)

So if OpenFlow's re-coding lets me play that out in different ways from regular Defcon, I say hurrah. It won't be Defcon any more, but it won't stop me playing Defcon (I quite like the game, especially now I know I can beat noobs and learn from masters) and if it gives me something else to mess about with one boring night, why would I complain about it? I'm quite looking forward to trying it out when it's ready, just for the fun of it, and I applaud OpenFlow for putting in the effort. FWIW, I'm two thirds through writing a mod (yes, just a mod - no re-coding involved) that possibly everyone will hate, but I'll still post it when it's ready because maybe *someone* will get some passing enjoyment from it, and that'll enhance the satisfaction I got from the creation process. If some people want to get all bent out of shape about it - well - the degree to which I won't care will be legendary. :D

My advice, OpenFlow, is to proceed in similar vein. If people don't like it, they don't have to eat it. **Although, really dude - it's going to be taken more seriously and viewed with less suspicion if changelogs are available**

SpitJock


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Defcon, like most other games, is structured from the top-down to pit players into adversarial conflict with one another and through its gaming mechanics affords to the more skilled players (in general) the opportunity to come up on top (in terms of scoring) at the direct expense of the less skilled players (it is - more or less - a zero sum game). However, unlike a lot of simulation or even quasi-simulation games, Defcon rewards skill of a very particular kind. (ie Even something as silly as The Sims offers a functional emulation of real life) Defcon is the type of game where much of the strategic advantage is gained through knowing certain "tricks" that happen to be actually quirks or bugs in the game themselves. Long time players know what I am talking about so I do not need to elaborate on this part. Also, much of what is referred to "skill" in gameplay can simply be reduced to muscle-memory and a piece-wise combination set of repetitive "going through the motion" tactics micromanaged and executed at or about near real-time to gain an upper hand in positioning and unit retention for the ultimate goal of optimizing one's own nuclear platform delivery options at the expense of one's opponent(s). But much of what is considered as "skill" and many of the so-called strategies and tactics employed throughout the game are the direct result of emergent properties from the structural confines and through the reductive limitations of the game itself - and these strategies and tactics are only valid within the limited confines of Defcon's game mechanics and bears no resemblance and offers neither simulation nor emulation nor even a functional model of the sort of real world nuclear situations that the core of the game was trying to model. After all, the core theme of Defcon is nuclear warfare. But the aforementioned "tricks" (cheats?) and silly gameplay mechanics combine together to compound and made the matter worse - effectively overshadowing any element of true nuclear warfare - such as nuclear deterrence, credible second-strike capability, mutually assured destruction, asymmetric warfare, etc - and thereby take the "nuclear" component out of a nuclear themed game.... where it reverts and reduces to just another "Age of Empires".

Ironically, an exhilarating nuclear game doesn't have to have any nuclear weapons go off at all. The critically acclaimed "Crimson Tide" movie had no "nuclear action", and unlike "Broken Arrow" it didn't even see a single detention of a nuclear weapon at all. Quoting Lt. Commander Ron Hunter in Crimson Tide, "in the nuclear world, war is the enemy"... It is the simulation and emulation of nuclear tension brought about by the prospects of nuclear annihilation and other elements such as nuclear deterrence, credible second-strike capability, mutually assured destruction, asymmetric warfare, etc etc that make a nuclear themed movie or game so enticing... This to me is far preferable to a so-called nuclear game that reductively and  functionally plays like an "Age of Empires" strategy game with a bunch of nukes going off in the background and thrown in for kicks.

But on the bright side, Defcon source code can easily be tweaked, values changed, functionality added, etc to highlight and to simulate and/or emulate the more "nuclear" aspects (including the psychological aspects of nuclear warfare and nuclear deterrence) to emphasize more on credible deterrence, second-strike retaliation and less on all the aforementioned issues above that in my opinion do nothing but take away from a true DEFCON type of game. 

Now I understand that people like to win. The difference between real-life and a game (other than the obvious difference) is that real-life is open ended. For all intends and purposes real life goes on into perpetuity. A game on the other hand has to have a reasonable "time limit" and a reasonable "end in sight".. It can't last forever. Defcon isn't "correspondence chess" where a long match can last several months to a year, etc. So it is structured around a limited time frame per game session. Even a heavily modified version of Defcon would still be bound by the same structural limitations. But I would assert that in a nuclear game, the normal definition of "winning" does not apply. Winning does not necessarily have to mean "losing the least" nor does it have to become the typical "winner scores points at losers expense" type of scenario. There is another way to win, and that is for everyone to win. No nuclear weapons need ever go off. But human nature dictates that seldom no people like this type of "winning"... You see, SJ, when people say to you they "want to win", they don't REALLY want to win. Let me rephrase that, they don't really JUST want to WIN. What they really want is to win by standing out, to win by putting their opponent down, to win by contrast, to win by burying their opponents score to the ground and zero-ing their population, and it is the precise contrasting juxtaposition (winner : 250+ points, loser : -150 points) that most people find so gratifying and satisfying. Equity does not mean equality. More skilled players find it inequitable for "everyone to win", and they probably feel that it is more fair and more equitable that they are rewarded (via points and bragging rights) by being more skillful and they demand the sort of platform that allows their skills to really shine and "make a difference" in a recognizable way. The problem with that is, in a nuclear themed game, the normal definition and connotation of "winning" SHOULD NOT apply here. This isn't after all a game of Age of Empires . Again, and indeed, those aforementioned "skills" that I referred to in the paragraphs above should not have even made it in the game if Defcon was really serious about simulating the dynamics and emulating the "feeling" of nuclear warfare.

So in a real game of DEFCON, what I see is there comes a point in each game, call it the bifurcation point, where either the balance of power is maintained and the game ends with everyone more or less with perfect scores, OR alternatively, at this critical bifurcation junction point there is a spontaneous breakdown of order and symmetry and the true meaning of "mutually assured destruction" is brought to light. No more half-way scenarios where elite players totally own or pawn a noob... no... in real-life all major nuclear powers have credible second-strike deterrence and that is the way the game dynamics should have been configured in Defcon. I readily concede that in this more realistic style of nuclear warfare gameplay that the "default" scoring mode would be largely meaningless and redundant and would likely need to be taken out altogether. This more realistic configuration of Defcon would only work against online players (AI/CPU is not smart enough to appreciate and understand many of the nuances and psychological effects of nuclear warfare and such and a lot of time chatting determines a different outcome in a game of diplo and CPU can't chat, it can't vote and it can't backstab, etc) and it would only make sense in a game of 6-player diplomacy with the survivor scoring mode. However, I do believe that the tension, the psychological effects and the elements of nuclear deterrence, credible second-strike capability, mutually assured destruction, asymmetric warfare, etc would be rightfully highlighted, emphasized and brought to the forefront, and all this combined would make for a much more realistic and enjoyable game of true DEFCON.
Last edited by OpenFlow on Fri Jul 27, 2012 9:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby roflamingo » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:30 pm

You are a stunningly boring autistic retard.

Go outside and shut the fuck up.


Cheers!
--rofl
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Postby Nukraine » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:36 pm

strategy: noun, a plan of action or policy designed to achieve a major or overall aim.

Introversion's game: goal is to lose the least
OpenFlow's game: goal is...?

Until this is resolved you are not making a strategy game.
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Postby OpenFlow » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:39 pm

Nukraine wrote:strategy: noun, a plan of action or policy designed to achieve a major or overall aim.

Introversion's game: goal is to lose the least
OpenFlow's game: goal is...?

Until this is resolved you are not making a strategy game.



OpenFlow's game: goal is...?

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Is to win without having to lose at all. Which, might I say, is at least comparable, if not preferable, to "losing the least".



From Defcon's own website: http://www.introversion.co.uk/defcon/about/index.html

About DEFCON

Introversion Software presents its third title, DEFCON, a stunning online multiplayer simulation of global thermonuclear war.
You play the role of a military Commander hidden deep within an Underground bunker. Your mission - to successfully exterminate your enemy's civilian population whilst disabling their ability to attack your own. Start by launching your battleships, subs and bombers in order to decimate your opponent's defences. Scramble together your alliances but remember only one can stand victorious.

Prepare your pre-emptive strike before one of your supposed allies gets the same idea. Choose the perfect moment for betrayal, obliterating your opponents with an apocalyptic thermonuclear barrage, but get it wrong and their devastating counter attack will bring you to your knees!

It's Global Thermonuclear War, and nobody wins. But maybe - just maybe - you can lose the least.



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Emphasis and highlights are my own. Defcon prides itself as being a simulation of global thermonuclear war, where does it state that it is or identifies with being a strategy game?


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_game_genres
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simulation
"Simulation is the imitation of the operation of a real-world process or system over time.[1] The act of simulating something first requires that a model be developed; this model represents the key characteristics or behaviors of the selected physical or abstract system or process. The model represents the system itself, whereas the simulation represents the operation of the system over time."
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Postby xander » Fri Jul 27, 2012 9:22 pm

Your posting style is one of the most bizarre and difficult-to-read that I have ever seen. The only way you could make it worse is by top quoting.

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Postby Nukraine » Fri Jul 27, 2012 11:03 pm

It is listed on Steam in the strategy section. I got it because it was a strategy game.

i would never buy your version...
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Postby OpenFlow » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:17 am

Nukraine wrote:It is listed on Steam in the strategy section. I got it because it was a strategy game.

i would never buy your version...





i would never buy your version...



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Well, you wouldn't have to buy it since 1) it would not and could not be for sale and 2) it would be available for free as a patch to everyone who has a PC version of the original Defcon game and 3) it wouldn't be on Steam, and although the vanilla Defcon might be listed on Steam in the strategy section, it is as a matter of fact self-identified on the official Defcon developer webpage as an "online multiplayer simulation" of "global thermonuclear war".
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Postby SpitJock » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:29 am

It gets difficult to know what reply is in response to what (who/whom?) sometimes in threads. Is using '@' a suitable way of delineating what you mean, if you want to respond to a bunch of stuff in one post?

For example:

@ OpenFlow: Is English your first language? Some of what you've written reads as a bit odd to native English speakers, and it may just be a translation problem. If English is your first language, well - I'm the first to admit I write a lot, but I do try to edit it for clarity if not length, and maybe you could benefit from trying that? You've clearly got an idea in mind, but it's not being expressed very well at the minute, and some people aren't patient with that. It's not a competition to see who can write the most, or use the longest words...

@OpenFlow (again): The "quirks or bugs" you refer to are what other people call gameplay. I have yet to encounter a game of any kind (computer rendered or otherwise) where the path to victory does not rely on knowing the "tricks". An accomplished backgammon player will beat me in seventy percent of games, because he has the "trick" of understanding the odds of the dice rolls and how best to capitalise on them better than I do. That does not mean backgammon is a flawed game, only that I am a flawed player. Using pejorative terms like "quirks", "bugs" and "tricks" when describing Defcon as a game may be the cause of a good deal of the hostility you're experiencing in your thread. There's a big difference between proposing a new game that is different in style to Defcon, and suggesting that Defcon is not a good game in itself...

@ OpenFlow (again, again): It looks like you're proposing a chess-like game. With correct play from both players, a draw is assured. If one player makes a mistake, the outcome is certain to be in favour of the other player (assuming correct play on both sides following the mistake) and the game need not continue. In your game, it's either obvious at Defcon 1 that there can be no winner, or it's obvious that player X has won and there's no need to sit through the firing of weapons to prove it. That's pretty much how the cold war went, thankfully.

@ roflamingo: Dignity - retention of - failed. Miserably. Publicly. Want to try again?

@ xander: I agree it's not always an easy read. But then I struggle to be concise and accurate too, at times, as do many others. It's especially difficult in public forums where you can never be sure to what degree people are on the same page as you, thoughts-wise. Even harder where the language you're using is not your first. [/speculative attempt at benefit of doubt] Some people have the patience to try to reach understanding, some don't. C'est la vie... (Were you referring to me anyway, or to OpenFlow as I've assumed?)

@ xander (again): What's "top quoting"? If it's bad, I wish to avoid it. :)

@ Nukraine: I agree - OpenFlow proposes to create, from Defcon's base code, an entirely different experience. Is that inherently objectionable? I know of two different bands who play cover versions of songs written by a seminal 1970s rock band, radically different from the original versions, yet all equally pleasing to some ears. A truly good piece of work, cleverly manipulated, can cross genres and still be good.

@ Nukraine (again): So don't buy/download/pay attention to it. I'd never buy/download/pay attention to a BoyZone album, but I'll defend to my last breath [/exaggeration] their right to make albums and let people know they have. So would most people, given a few quiet moments to consider the alternative... (OK - maybe BoyZone not a great example - crimes against music and all that, but you catch my drift, I hope?) What I wouldn't do, is go to all the effort of logging on to a BoyZone forum just to say "I'm not interested in your work." It seems unnecessarily combative... And time-consuming, given that I can come up with thousands of things I have no interest in, without even thinking about it. That's a lot of posts in a lot of places...

SJ

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