Discussion on new SAC Map

I figured I start a topic here to talk about this rather than posting on the suggestions board.

I will vote for 150:45000, 3 depth, engine required (as a map setting), and winning sometimes = win.

Why 3 depth?

While some mediocre counter builds will be created, the extra participation and diversity is worth more. Making the required bracket too large might hinder participation and diversity. Players who wish to prove themselves can still choose to go further and sweep, but I don’t think it should be a solid requirement.

Some stuff I notice.

The higher the credit count, and the lower the pilot:credit ratio, the harder it is to rush.

moving ship have space limitation. So stacking long range is much more effective in a high credit count map.

a high pilot:credit ratio also brings different dynamic into the game. Fighters become a major cost and undercutting them can sometimes make a drastic differences.

So for example, while RCIX SAC 19/21 works great at stopping rushes, bring that some build on SAC - 1 map and it stops working entirely. 17 easily dominates them by undercutting on fighters.

Edit: Lowered resource count.

I am a fan of having large fighter proportions because it puts an additional constraint on ‘tank’ fleets to buy nontrivial air defense (repair/armor/AA frigates/fighters), which often introduces a weak point in said fleet.

Many so-called “rush” fleets that counter them barely have enough firepower to assassinate AA frigates and strip defenses like shields/armor. They need defenses of their own on top of their already costly speed requirements, after all. These fleets depend on the high dps of fighters to generate the hull killing power they need against more ridiculous (read: Tribe) setups. I’d really like to see torpedo fighters buffed to the point where cruisers can’t afford to ignore fighters for any length of time.

However, high amounts of resources allows for overpowering critical mass effects projected into small areas, be it rocket/laser fighters, missile/plasma spam, whatever. 90,000 is worryingly large and probably crosses more than a few of those thresholds. Note that Caspian IV is 80,000/300, and has always been a pretty volatile map.

Well, tribe rush is a possibility.

But yeah I am also worry about the critical mass effect. The more the credits, the more powerful stacking long range is. Prehaps 150:45000 would be better.

I’ll second that credit ratio. That seems like a good compromise.

As far as what counts as a win, I think it should be 66.6%. If your deployment just wins 0.00001% of the time, you should not be able to post it as the next contender.

Other things:
-Map: Joust, forced center deploy
-No unit stacking.
-All ships must have engines AND must be able to get to the opponent on their own.

Edit: also, depth 3 or 4 is fine with me. Whatever everyone else wants :wink:

I want a good pilot count and enough points to be able to build a varied fleet that can handle multiple types of opposing fleets. I would like 300/90K or at least 250/75K.

I also oppose any “Honor rules” such as minimum speeds or limits on stacking. Aside from the fact that I think there is no reason for such rules, you always end up with some people following them, others ignoring them and eventually everyone ignoring them. Any limits, such as requiring engines, should be included in the map itself.

I think that in the case of a fleet that sometimes wins, it should at least win more often than it loses to count as a win.

I would also like to point out that there is no reason we couldn’t have multiple maps with different SAC’s running simultaneously. For example we could have a mini fleet SAC map at 50/15K a medium fleet SAC at 150/45K and a large fleet SAC at 300/90K and a fighter fest SAC at 1000/100K. Let people vote with their feet. Some would grow and have interesting contests others might wither from lack of interest.

I vote for a standardized name people should post the challenge as, so it can be found in the challenge list when sorting by name/description.

As for credits: Anything above a few ten thousands seems excessive. It just promotes critical mass effects (which should be alleviated by balancing, but alas, cliff seems busy and I’m not sure he completely understands the issue, judging from his posts on the topic. Not everyone’s a Starcraft enthusiast and has spent the last 12 years following the pro-scene…) and makes the deployment take longer, because you have to deploy a multiple of ships. Anything between 200 and 500 per pilot seems acceptable, I’m certainly on board with the proposed 150:45’000, and I am also in favour of having multiple brackets and just let people vote with their deployment.

Also no honour rules. Either the map enforces something, or it’s legal. Totally in favour of Joust, corner deployments should not be as powerful as they are (due to non-turning formations). The map should have decent deepness, so you can actually deploy in interesting formations instead of having a single line.

It would also be interesting to go for “must beat last X maps”, and X should be comparatively large, such as 5+, or increasing it over time.

I would much prefer to see a larger $$ and pilot count. 300/90K would be fine. Also an open map where corner deployments are allowed. Still not sure what critical mass means - but high $$ amounts can lead to more varied formations and greater tactics.


We don’t have enough players to do several brackets. It would just dilute the player base and make the tournament move way too slowly. 300/90k is just way too much. Follick, I tried running GSB on my netbook (new Inspiron 1010), and it DOESN’T run well at all. Even with all the options turned off, RCIX’s frigate spam (80 or so frigs) made the game ridiculously choppy and slow. I couldn’t possibly imagine how any netbook could handle 1000 pilots, like you say.

Computer issues aside, I’m almost certain there will be even more balance issues with such a high credit count. Shield recharge will be even more useless, for example, which will, again, heavily favor tribe.

Critical mass is a gaming terminology which means simply that something emergent occurs or something qualitative changes when a certain parameter reaches a threshold. The most classic example is, in RTS games, what happens when you amass a bunch of ranged units. E.g., a swordsman facing off against an archer will always win 1-on-1. Likewise, two swordsmen facing against two archers will always win,. Three is the same story, etc. But finally, when 10 archers amass, the situation changes and you’ll find that 10 swordsmen will NEVER win. And furthermore, 20 archers could probably beat 25 or even 30 swordsmen. Thus, the critical mass can be said to be 10 archers.

Generally, it doesn’t increase the amount of tactics and variety. It actually decreases it, because once thw threshold is passed, Swordsmen become a useless unit. Archers beat them every time, which means spamming Swordsman is a strictly dominated (and therefore useless) tactic.

This kind of thing definitely happens in GSB. Consider the ranged plasma/missile spamming that occured at the end of RCIX (the whole reason for looking for a new format).

That’s actually a great idea. We could have the depth set really low at first to build interest and variety, then slowly increase it to whittle down the competition… like a real tournament >:D

So it looks like 123 stw, thc and kdansky like 150/45K. Berny_74 and myself want 300/90K. yurch hasn’t expressed a specific preference. Can we compromise at 250/50K?

250:50k is 1 to 200 ratio though.

Would you prefer 250/75K with a 300:1 ratio?

We can always start two, one for 150:45k and another for 300:90k.

The map should be named 0150 SAC, and 0300 SAC. Having a 0 in front is important because it makes finding them A LOT easier with the sorting system.

As for the critical mass phenomenon: Send yourself a typical missile spamming challenge (Cruisers with fast missiles, fighters with target painters, fighters on escort to kill fighters, a tank ship in front with nothing much except armor and shields). Once for 15k, and once for 100k. Then try to beat it without going for obvious weaknesses you put in there yourself (speed -> plasma). Without even trying I can tell you that you will walz over the 15k version easily (that’s only about 4 cruisers with serious guns), and the 100k version will be hard as rock, because your ships get blown to pieces before they get there.

So is there any interest in a single compromise map at 250/50K or should we go for two maps at 150/45K and 300/90K?

Is there consensus that these should be Joust style center deploy maps?

Any thoughts on what the sizes of the maps should be or how wide the center deployment area should be?

What should the challenge depth be?
How about up to and including challenge 10 you need to defeat the previous 3.
From 11 to 20 you need to defeat the previous 4. From 21 to 30 you need to defeat the previous 5 and so on.

I think RCIX SAC (50k) already went overboard in critical mass. I can’t even rush my own stack missile spam with scramblers, or my stack plasma spam with speed…

I like 2 maps, since it allows us to compare the effectiveness of certain strategy based on credit count.

I like the Joust style center deploy map. I like large maps, and the center deploy area should be a square with width and height = 1/3 of the map size.

Seeing as how RCIX-SAC lost it’s steam at 22 with just depth 4, I am not sure if depth 5 is going to do any better.

I’ve been kind of distracted by the tournament, but since there doesn’t seem to be any objection, I will go ahead and make these two maps.
There has already been a SAC-1, SAC-2 and SAC-3. RCIX-SAC would be SAC-4 I guess. So the two new maps will be 0_SAC-5 and 0_SAC-6. The 0_ prefix will make them sort first on the map list. 4610742 and 4610748 are the challenge numbers.

Also, please make 2 new topics for the 2 challenges so people can post their update/discussions like in RCIX-SAC.

#2 up for SAC 5, 4610772. Let’s see how overpower stacking long range is on high credit count.

SAC-6 2 is up. A frigate-cruiser mix.


Awfully tight map. You really start out right on top of one another. :slight_smile:

  • Chris

But actually, it offers no advantages to short range as far as I can see, because the map has plenty of room to move back.

SAC-6-3 CL Spam