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More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:16:28

Mark
Level 26
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If we needed more reasons to hate mortars, here is a whopper. I'm playing Asia Population Density 2015 and there is a mortar on the island of Java right next to a territory with 765M troops. The mortar will kill 153M (20%) for the "low cost" of 4.53B. Meanwhile, I have plenty of mercenaries at $5.50-$8 that are available right away to do the job with 100% reliability. It seems that mortars are just an excuse to make the surrounding territories more difficult to conquer. Make them reasonable or make them just go away, please. The current situation sucks.

Edited 1/19/2022 22:18:13
More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:17:33


JK_3 
Level 62
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yes

dont use mortars

total waste of money and time

Edited 1/19/2022 22:17:39
More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:20:13


Gunk
Level 58
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Bottom line, mortars are a great and fun idea but no one uses them because they are overpriced and ineffective. They need to be buffed or they will continue to be useless part of idle.
More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:22:42

Mark
Level 26
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The problem isn't just the mortar's ridiculous cost. It's also that the surrounding territories were made more difficult. Really, the whole situation was poorly thought out. Grade F-.
More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:24:14


krinid 
Level 61
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Had I been able to make the most recent Fizzer's "ask me anything" stream session, I was going to ask WTH he was thinking about mortars, if he was aware that they are useless, that no one likes them, and if any plans for them are upcoming.

As a concept, they have potential. As they are implemented now, they are garbage. As JK said, waste of time & money.
More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:26:14


JK_3 
Level 62
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The problems with mortars is that:
1. they are way too expensive
2. by the time you charged them, there are not territories left around them to fire at
3. they miss so often, that even if you fired mortars nonstop, you could probably finish the entire level without hitting a single shot

As a result of that, a mortar is the most useless thing in idle (even more useless than the FB artifact...). As you indeed pointed out, the level making algorithm seems to think they are useful, and unfortunately raises territory costs around it.

If mortars dont get improved, they should be removed. If not today then tomorrow.
More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:34:00

Phoenix
Level 24
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you could easily fix point 2 by changing the loading time into a cool-down time. You can immediately fire after you loaded them, but afterwards you have to wait an hour to fire again. The other issues are not that easy to fix, but I thought I could drop that idea here. ;)
More mortar insanity: 1/19/2022 22:34:02

Mark
Level 26
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Two ways to help fix the problem: 1. Reduce firing time to 10-15 minutes. 2. Reduce firing cost per casualty to half of your lowest manned mercenary camp with the same (or more) number of troops available - so you don't leave a few in camp just to keep the mortar cost low. Yes, that will make the firing cost dynamic based on the target but that should not be hard to code. Also, making the cost depend on the casualties will eliminate the effect of diminishing returns for multiple shots on the same target.

Edited 1/19/2022 22:47:10
More mortar insanity: 1/20/2022 01:51:37


krinid 
Level 61
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It's fine to have base mortars suck, but minimally over some phase 1 Advancements and/or Artifacts and/or Techs that buff them to make them actually useful.

1 advancement & 1 tech (yes, both) to lower load time (or cooldown time, whichever).

1 advancement & 1 tech (yes, both) to increase hit %.

1 advancement & 1 tech (yes, both) to increase damage.

And whatever artifacts to buff whatever aspects of them, the above 3 categories or something else.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 01:27:55

FTWW
Level 39
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1. they are way too expensive
2. by the time you charged them, there are not territories left around them to fire at
3. they miss so often, that even if you fired mortars nonstop, you could probably finish the entire level without hitting a single shot

Number 1, of course, is the biggest problem with mortars as currently implemented. In a recent level I encountered a mortar that required 3.36B armies to load. The largest territory within firing range was 1.2B in size. For them to have any conceivable use they need to have their costs adjusted so that they are potentially advantageous.

Number 2 I regard as part of the tradeoff with mortars, if the first point were fixed. You could wait for an advantage, or carry on taking territories now but less overall efficiently. That is, at least in theory, an interesting decision to make.

Number 3 is a design feature that I don't like. I've commented before that the randomness feels very out of place with the rest of the game. Diminishing damage as the targets get further away makes sense to me.

All of the above being affectable by techs would make a lot of sense. I hope that there are plans for this in the future.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 01:48:24


joeydavis761 
Level 60
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there's a difficulty factor for the challenge. Otherwise, Fizzer would give everything from the start and every level would be of equal difficulty. If you're looking for an easy game, WZ isn't for you. If you ask me, Fizzer should've made it harder and near impossible to win but people would complain like on the Caesar challenge singleplayer level.

Fizzer combed through jungles and wandered deserts, climbed mountains even, in search of perfect balance.

Edited 1/21/2022 01:53:46
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 03:03:16


TBest 
Level 60
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Number 3 is a design feature that I don't like. I've commented before that the randomness feels very out of place with the rest of the game. Diminishing damage as the targets get further away makes sense to me.

I think, instead of having a % chance to miss. Make it a % change to crit (x5 damage or something). Having a miss makes the player feel bad, getting a crit makes them feel good. You could still balance it around the same expected damage output. And also give the player some guaranteed minimum damage.

I don't mind some randomness (like with artifacts) but when you get unlucky, it's good to still get something (like a poor artifact)

Edited 1/21/2022 03:04:43
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 03:36:38

Chief Rollie
Level 58
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The most obnoxious part about mortars is that they are so useless you would be better off with the territory giving you money instead of potentially being a money suck.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 04:19:40

Mark
Level 26
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Joey, I'm not complaining about the difficulty nor an I looking for an easy game. If Fizzer wanted us to use mortars, he could have made them mandatory. Instead, he gave us a choice, use the new feature at 10x the cost or ignore it. Only a complete idiot would choose to use mortars in their current state. Perhaps, that is the test he put in front of us. Personally, I think he was adding something useful to the game but the implementation fell short. Very short.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 04:22:11

Fixing
Level 9
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Never use mortars, they will cost you too much.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 04:25:13

Fixing
Level 9
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Fizzier needs to make mortars more useful and cheaper.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 04:25:49

Fixing
Level 9
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The cons of using mortars are gigantic.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 04:27:21


ZombieSlayer 
Level 62
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Reduce the cost to arm, reduce the time to activate, increase the percentage of damage, and place them in high cost areas.
More mortar insanity: 1/21/2022 20:20:37


krinid 
Level 61
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Mortars are fairly similar to the Field Hospital active artifact (which I think most will agree is a fairly useless artifact, as in, if you're going to use an Active, there are better options - let me know if you disagree), but actually even 1 step worse. They both require you to capture territories to some central key point (where the mortar is, or where you want to plant the Field Hospital), then target the areas around that key point. So you have the struggle of getting to the key point without capturing any of the areas surrounding it that you want to get the benefit of the mortar/Field Hospital with. And if you can't do this (leave nearby key territories behind that you want to attack using the benefits of mortar/FH), they neither has any value. So the benefit of each both conflict with the task of getting to them.

The FH cooldown is analogous to the load time of mortars, just longer as per Actives.

What makes mortars '1 step worse' is that the load time (cooldown) is _before_ you get any benefit from it whatsoever, not afterward.

And it costs money to use. So maybe 2 steps worse?

And it can miss and do 0 damage. So maybe 3 steps worse?

So 3 steps worse than an already fairly useless artifact. I guess one benefit it has over FH is that mortars don't tie up an artifact slot while cooling down.
More mortar insanity: 1/22/2022 00:52:13


Master Jz 
Level 62
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I use mortars when I run out of mercs. I'm pretty sure I used up every single one on Hardened Scandinavia as I was waiting for drafts. I'll eventually get to a point where I don't need them, but for now they're useful enough.
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