BOTF 2

BOTF2; support/discussion/questions

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Should BOTF be remade whilst keeping its charm?

I think a renewed BOTF will deffinately show gamers that this game is the best game that has ever been made
61
91%
I either like the original BOTF and spend my time just remodding it continuously or just give up with trying to keep up with 21st century gaming tech
6
9%
 
Total votes: 67

Malvoisin
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Post by Malvoisin »

we once had a channel at st-city.net, but that's years ago now I think. Since we are not really online each day, it's difficult to maintain such a server which needs moderators and ops. But of course SirP for example uses Instant Messaging (I don't for that matter ;)). For all other purposes we have the botf2 forums over here: http://www.botf2.star-trek-games.com

If at some point community members put up an IRC server together and the thing runs smoothly, well there's no problem with that with us of course ;).
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Martok
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Post by Martok »

Wow! That's quite an update. I'll definitely be checking it out (am downloading now, as a matter of fact). Thanks, Malvoisin! :D
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Army37
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Post by Army37 »

Downloaded it, installed it, built some ships but can't see them on the Galaxy view....I've seen them on the ship screen but can't seem to be able to give them orders....they are stuck on Terra
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Martok
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Post by Martok »

^ Yeah, I had trouble figuring that out too at first. You need to click on the "Coalition of Planets" symbol in the upper-right corner of the Sol system.
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Army37
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Post by Army37 »

Thank you very much Martok!
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Martok
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Post by Martok »

You're welcome! Glad I could help. :)
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Malvoisin
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Post by Malvoisin »

I made a few screenshots from the english version, here they are (preview jpg's have <100 kb size each, hope that is okay, if not, I can remove some of them; clicking on them leads to full resolution png's; that small typo in the precombatodds picture does only occur when you load a german version savegame with the english version, by default the right english names of all races are shown when a battle takes place):
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Badbru
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Post by Badbru »

Is there no Botf like tactical combat or did I do something wrong?

I downloaded this and played as the humans for about 20 turns or perhaps more. Then I met those guys, second faction in your Vs pic. Clicked on fight option and it auto resolved.

Saved and quit deciding I was better off in Botf.
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Army37
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Post by Army37 »

yup....there is no tactical combat in that game.

One thing I noticed is that it's hard to find what is what....like colony ships or troop transport to build outposts.

The other thing that bugs me is the fact that you only have 9 slots to build like farms or replicators.

I also get easily lost with all the buttons, going to shipyard building menu to the build queue for farms to galaxy screen.

And I don't know how to establish treaties, build trade routes and so on and on.

It's a very complex game to play with. The races are unknown, ships are unknown...played like 60 turns and quit because I go crushed.

On the positive side, I like the graphic sides of things but this isn't star trek

I want to apologize, my post is kindda pretty harsh and it wasn't ment to be. There's a lot of effort put on in that game and I acknowledge that....personaly, I do not like it right now, maybe it's too detailled for my taste, too many things to look at....don't really know.

Once again, sorry if I've offended the creative team, please do not take it personaly.
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Post by MrD »

It's an Alpha, so it's not close to finished :D
Don't worry I think people will understand that you might sound harsh but that's understandable, it least from my point of view when this is your first Alpha.
I've seen Alphas where I thought "I hate this game, not gonna play this game" but the final version was really great.

And always keep in mind how the Star Trek side of things gets into this:
If I remember correctly they were not allowed to make a game called BotF2 so they had to make it into this game and develop a Star Trek mod in parallel.
So it'll become more "trekish" with said mod.
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Post by Malvoisin »

gameplay and game control issues like how to establish trade routes and get to know which of all the options and menus you can ignore until late-game, will get explained in Alpha7 with in-game tutorials and tooltips, so no worries, it isn't that much more complex than good old botf, just remember when you played botf for the first time and probably didn't know what to do with research and stuff anyway. It does not take much more time to get to turn 100 with nearly-optimal strategy than in unmodded vanilla botf.

the 9 slots are actually intended to help people reducing their micromanagement efforts since I know from playing botf myself, that I usually keep filling up all slots with 9x buildings/ships but then next turn or the turn after that when I researched new structures I found myself time-consumingly erasing the whole build queue again and setting up things anew. It's quick to be changed in the publicly available source code anyway.

going to shipyard is actually easier than in botf because it isn't a totally different menu but a sub-menu of the build menu. Also you can use cursors and extra mouse buttons for quick switching through your systems/colonies in build menu.

trade routes are established in system->trade menu and there just like in botf, nothing fancy (except that a trade route slowly increases your relationships with that specific minor over time as well as when you help him terraform his planetary system ;)). Of course this is not explained to the beginner, but again, comes with Alpha7 along with a start menu deserving its name..

I also know people would like it a lot more if we could show a video of some fancy in-game space battles, well, but this is up to people like Xordan to try and get their (way more experienced) hands on it. It's also until then till the game can really replace botf in total concerning gameplay features.

But right now, it has the better AI (minus some things listed below), auto-build actually does something meaningful with your colonies' build queues (it is activated by going to Empire menu, there under Systems, click on one of your choice and press the 'A' button on your keyboard), it is much more stable in multiplayer, okay, it (still) lacks a few things, so let's list them for easier referring:
  • colored start menu
  • galaxy creation parameter settings
  • AI building troops and managing them for invasion and defence purposes (hence no AI-led invasions or invasion defence yet)
  • 3D battles
  • Random events and alien ships type "Cristalline entity" or "Gomtuu"
  • in-game encyclopedia and tutorials
  • some kind of Borg race
  • minor race fleet movement AI
  • have some minors act like "medium" race, i.e. expanding to nearby habitable star systems and maybe even invade other systems (then mostly at the beginning when majors are weak(er) than those minors
  • Windowed-mode for bote (right now it's just full-screen)
  • formula for crew experience gain after a battle
  • artwork (UI menu design) for our sixth race, the Omega-Alliance (thus greyed-out and not playable yet)
For all those who do not like the new resources like Titanium and stuff, it's nothing easier than to mod them out of the game by making all structure and ship build cost requirements zero for these resources. It is still balanced then, requires maybe some minor adaptions but nothing too fancy for an experienced botf modder. We have editors for changing buildings, ships and minor race names and stats. Making a total conversion mod for example is as easy as using the Ultimate Editor for botf.
So in the end, if you're going to have a full look at it, it has the potential to be modded to be really close to botf in all terms, which it was originally intended anyway. Biggest handicap still remains 3D battle, of course.

And no, I don't take criticism as harsh, only thing I would be glad to see is that you took your time and gave it a fair chance in the end. Most stuff that people mention about missing in-game I know about anyway, since it probably bugs every botf player and I'm also one myself ;). About it being not close to finished, well, we gave it version number 0.8 so we think it's not that far away, at least not decades..

Alpha8 should then already become beta1 so all of the things listed above (minus probably the 3D battle, which depends on others to be done or gets on our to-do list after beta1 in case SirP wants to learn 3D programming too) should be solved by then.

About the other thing with the trek mod, well that's up to the community or anyone who wants to do it. We decided for us that we do not want to get in trouble with (stupid) german and french law, so whoever is not "subjugated" to the "droît d'auteur", can just do whatever he wants, like it's done here with botf for example.
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Post by Army37 »

Thanks guys, I will definitly give it another try at some point....it's just that at first, I built ships....couldn't find them...came back on the forum and Martok graciously infoed me where to find them...found a race but didn't know how to establish treaty with it. then at turn 60 or so, tks to Martok, I started to move ships around to find that I had 2 scouts and a colony ship then at turn 61 I go crushed by a race...I got mad lol

It's just that there is so many different things to build....and then the techs keeps on coming with new discovered techs and more stuff to build. I got overwhelmed by everything. I'm gonna wait for a few days when I have lotsa time off to spare before starting from scratch and take the time to figure things out.

Tks Malvoisin for the above message....It does explain a lot on the progress of your game.
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Post by anjel »

unrelated question.

How´s your preogress Xordan ???
Live long and propser
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Post by Malvoisin »

yes, that's what I care most about here in this thread too ;), so how's it going on the 3D battle front and otherwise, Xordan?


Edit: Until then, when he hits back, I have a list of BotE gameplay hints so you get not-so-easily overrun by the enemy AI ;). It starts with the two game controls I already mentioned in my first post. Later-on in text, more advanced tips are given. It is also made for non-botf-players, so it explains things pretty much in detail not-always-needed for an experienced botf player.
  • Options menu bar is by default hidden. You need to move your mouse to the upper left edge of the screen to make it show up. There you can save and/or quit a game.
  • Fleets can be selected by clicking on the race icon on galaxy map in the respective sector. Then on the lower panel on screen the available fleets and ships are shown. Three clicks are needed, first on galaxy map race symbol in the upper right corner of the sector in question, then one left-mouse-click on the ship/fleet in fleet panel below on screen, then on the sector you wish to fly into.
  • Right click and drag will let you quickly move and scroll around galaxy map. Also, using mouse-wheel, you can zoom in and out of map. Cursors and extra mouse buttons can be used to quickly switch between systems in build menu view.
  • Outposts can be build by transport class ships, just go over the order buttons on bottom right after selecting such a ship, you'll find the correspondingly-named button there. After finishing an outpost, (an)other transporter(s) can even upgrade this outpost to a full starbase by essentially clicking on the same button again for this ship
  • After meeting another alien race (mostly a so-called minor, major homeworlds are not supposed to be close to each other at game start, but it can happen), you can set up diplomatic relationships with this minor. If he is in favor of you, i.e. neutral and above, try to convince him to sign a trade treaty with you. Once accepted, lay a trade route to his homeworld.
    In order to do that, go to system->trade menu and click on trade routes (use your homeworld as starting point first, could be you need to wait a few turns into the game before a trade route is allowed population-wise, you'll get a note however in-game about that), then lay it to the sector in question. After that you'll have the benefit of evergrowing relationship values with this minor. It is slow, but overtime you will see that he becomes more and more friendly towards you (depending on his race traits of course, not all minors act the same way) and eventually offers you better treaties and at last membership.
    Trade routes can be laid to other majors as well when you have a trade treaty or higher with this major (non-aggressive pact does not count here). Since majors mostly got more than one star system under their control, you can lay a full set of trade routes towards their systems (1:1 relationship there, so 1 sector to 1 other sector). Income from that route is calculated by both systems' population so it helps when you have some intel about their system pop. Cancelling a trade route works the same way as laying a trade route, you'll notice it becomes pink on galaxy map and ends in 5 turns.Then you can for example retry to lay a more profitable route if you choose a wrong one the last time (so to sum it up, try to lay evenly routes, i.e. a 30bn. star system should do trade with a 30bn. star system of another alien race and so on, having a 50bn. system doing trade with a 10bn. system is a bit of a waste of credits).
  • Use resource routes right from the start after you colonized your first world. Most likely it will need titanium for its structures to build and your homeworld has more than enough at the beginning. Resource routes are laid similar to trade routes but work resource-wise, so just one resource per route is possible. Also I would not recommend laying more than one route per system since only one route is for free, more than one go at the cost of trade routes, i.e. for each further resource route you can lay one less trade route from that system.
  • Diplomacy works as follows: Once you get to know / meet another race, it is added to your diplomatic menu in the list at left hand side. You can click on it and see how this race is seeing you (hostile, friendly, optimistic, etc.). By giving gifts you can try to improve your relationships with them. Once they are neutral or higher towards you, you may want to consider offering them a trade treaty. Once accepted, you can lay a trade route towards that race's home system. This gains you money/credits and continuously but slowly improves relationship with them. You can also bribe them if they already belong to another major or have higher treaties with another major.
    This holds for the "minors" in-game. A "major" is a race that can be played by humans or AI. These majors expand their territory just like you and they have slightly different diplomatic options, but in the end it should be self-explanatory what a "non-aggressiveness"-pact means and what effects an affiliation or a defence pact with another major race has.
Here some more advanced hints start, you may want to find out about them yourself (you can get behind it yourself certainly, they are pretty logical when you think about it ;)):
  • Helping minors terraform their planetary system helps increasing your popularity with them too. That way it can boost relationsships even from hostile towards neutral or above and then you can do as mentioned above to get that minor into your empire.
  • I'd only terraform planets that do not take more than 10 turns at the beginning as a general hint. Also, multiple colonization in one star system boosts population number - though it costs of course a lot to build that second colony ship and works only if there are more than 1 planet in that system and that other planet(s) need(s) to be unterraformed, otherwise it gets colonized too by the first ship colonizing this world - is a thing worth thinking about. When you have >7bn. population in a system, you can build a so-called star-dock. This orbital structure increases range of your fleet and is one of the most useful things at early-game alongside researching engine tech towards level 3 at 100% RP allocation, ignoring the rest a bit because engine tech also increases maximum range of your ships making it possible to colonize and explore worlds that could not be reached before (or only when building expensive outposts to get there).
  • I'd rather not invest too much credits into convincing minors at the beginning, buying colony and transport ships is IMO a bit more useful, but there are several ways to play the game (also depending on the race you choose to play with of course, each has its own special prowess), I just mention my way here.

Btw. it is "allowed" ;) to take screencaptures from in-game, maybe even create a trailer if you know how to do such stuff. Having a gameplay video surely helps people see quickly what the game is like, more so than screenshots. Also it can help explain game control issues like the ones mentioned above.
Malvoisin
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Re: BOTF 2

Post by Malvoisin »

A german BotE player is making some HD quality videos of the german Star Trek mod of Birth of the Empires (mod done by an avid bote player not belonging to the dev team). That mod even has the Borg in it which are not featured in the original BotE version and has many elements (graphics, sounds, voices) taken from botf in it as it seems. So I post the links just for the fun of it, btw. the videos are from one game, i.e. from turn 1 to turn 140:

Part 1: http://letsplayimpot.de/?v=24296
Part 2: http://letsplayimpot.de/?v=24369
Part 3: http://letsplayimpot.de/?v=24701
Part 4: http://letsplayimpot.de/?v=24724
Part 5: http://letsplayimpot.de/?v=24744
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