Stage removal: Individualized (per-player) Pricing of Weapons and Classes

Instead of the current fixed pricing for weapons and classes, which players simply can or cannot afford, change the pricing structure of everything to be individualized for each player, where prices would slowly lower based on that player’s time spent using a thing (more with DMG dealt, and much more for kills). Prices would decrease each time you use a thing and then also have a team shared price ‘markdown’ on any particular weapon or class when the average price for that thing for all of your team is low enough.

Disclaimer: Most of what I’ll propose is somewhat invisible to the player, they still just deal with available credits/evos and see price numbers.

The idea is that initially you would use free crappy classes at game’s start to get costly upgraded classes, which will be cheaper to get again (on subsequent visit to armory or next time you’re evolving (after you’ve died probably)). The ‘expensive’ classes and gear would be VERY costly initially (at game start), but low to mid range stuff might be VERY cheap to buy towards the middle and end of the match. Players will start to save money / retain more evos after some time, giving them the possibility to buy the more expensive stuff.

For humans, each type of weapon would be classified in the general branch of technology it stems from (incendiary, electrical, nuclear, quantum, mechanical, magnetic, w/e) - Use of any thing from a branch slightly lowers the price of other things in the same branch. For instance, any incendiary weapons use lowers the cost of all other incendiary weapons, with the more ‘expensive’ ones (good quality, not talking about price here) ones lowering it at a faster rate than use with any ‘cheaper’ ones (again, cheap as in low quality, not indicative of the price).

Using rifles quickly makes shotguns cheap enough to get… which quickly starts making flamer and then chaingun less expensive…Using psaw makes massdriver cheaper more slowly than using lasgun, etc…
In general this would allow players to specialize in what weapons they like to use, and stages as a team-wide limit on what can be bought can be removed.

Aliens would have a similar system regarding shared evolutionary traits…

Anyway, last big idea about this is that after a LONG while, things become free or cost next to nothing to use… at game’s end basilisk and shotguns would likely be free. For a VERY long game with VERY skilled players, you might have free marauders and free lasguns.
*Note: For theoretical 5+ hour long games, eventually even the tyrants and lcannons would be free… (just saying).

Next: How this applies to building…

and all of this, in case of a reasonable team, results in the following behavior:

  • there is a weapon that is initially free. initially, that is the team’s current weapon of choice. there will also be the next weapon of choice.
  • the weapons of choice change based on the following iteration:
  • the whole team only uses its current weapon of choice.
  • for every player, cash accumulates, allowing everyone to buy 1 instance of a better weapon.
  • based on the immediate needs for a better weapon, the team decides either to set a next weapon of choice to really be the “next” weapon in quality, or to wait for now, accumulating more cash, attempting to skip a weapon.
  • eventually, the team decides on the next weapon of choice, which is slightly higher in quality, than the current weapon of choice.
  • the team uses only its 2 weapons of choice: if a player has enough cash for the team’s next weapon of choice, then he/she buys that, otherwise he/she buys the team’s current weapon of choice.
  • this continues until every player can buy the next weapon of choice every time.
  • at this point, the current weapon of choice is set to that of the next, and another iteration may commence.
  • this continues until the lucifer cannon is made buyable every time.
  • if the chaingun was skipped during the iterations, then the team may return to cheapening that, with another iteration.
  • finally, the grenade should also be considered at one point, not necessarily last.

the perceived result is that a team will be locked into using 1 or 2 weapons at a time, basically until the lucifer cannon becomes free, at which point up to 3 weapons may start to become widespread. only a subset of weapons will be explored.

during this economy-strategy, the goals r

  • to concentrate the team on one weapon, whenever possible; because that results in a unified decrease in price for that weapon;
  • to perform the least amount of jumps before the weapon of highest quality is reached; because if crappier weapons r not bought at all, then the highest-quality weapon becomes free as S00N™ as possible.

all of this sounds shit (though not highly different from the current state of affairs in the choice of weapons).


some weapons r made exceptionally effective against certain enemies (eg., dretchburgers r easy to cook), and others ineffective against other enemies (eg., the mass driver doesn’t drive dretches — there’s nothing to drive). this could force a team to invest in buying some instances of a weapon that is effective against what the enemy is currently using.

or maybe even then, the best defence would be a good offence: to strive for a weapon that the enemy doesn’t have a cheap answer for. this is not immediately obvious.

1 Like

Thats alot of words. I like Stages because they’re easier to understand and lets everyone know where the match is. “The game has been 30 minutes long and Aliens are losing” doesn’t tell me much about the state of the game. “Humans are S3 and Aliens are S1” tells me that its GG because Aliens didn’t get enough kills to move to the better stages.

However its an imperfect system and needed a much-needed overhaul. It seems that RomDOS wants to create a system where everyone can pitch their money into certain weapons until they’re cheap so people don’t scramble for credits lategame.

My question is, why? If a team is losing hard, why shouldn’t they be left naked with rifles or dretches? Wouldn’t this system make stalemates easier? I’m genuinely interested.

There is a more general concept at play here, that relates back to the video that lamefun posted about difficult (challenging) versus punishing ( .

With the standard staging approach of Tremulous if you do well, the game adjusts to become less difficult for you (less challenging), if you are not doing well, the game adjusts to become more punishing for you. I always thought that was backwards. If a player/team is pwning its opponent, isn’t that an indication that that player/team needs more of a challenge? Also if a player/team is doing poorly, why is that player/team forced to use the same things they are failing badly at, while the enemy team gets even stronger?

In real life, technological development and evolution even doesn’t behave the way the standard staging of Tremulous behaves. Technology advances to satisfy needs, and if an existing technology satisfies that need very well, that technology’s use is continued. In evolution, species that perform better, procreate more, species that fail, become endangered, or even extinct.

The team that is losing hard will still only have access to a limited subset of possible weapons and classes while the other team wins by getting the better stuff for cheaper.

Instead of rifle v rants at end game or bsuits vs dretches, you would still have rich team vs poor team and what classes are involved is determined by what the team did throughout the course of the round.
This will make stalemates almost impossible as the set of available classes and impact of available credits /evos will not be a static thing like stages currently have. Ultimately only one team will have a superior economy and more ‘buying power’.