StarCraft® II

Gem Tower Defense Release

Posts: 40
Gem Tower Defense

In Gem TD, the towers you get are completely random. Start by building 5 random gems near the track and picking a gem to keep for the round.

Instructions

Combining Gems
If you build two of the same gems in one round, you can combine them to get a gem one quality level higher than the component gems. If you manage to build four of the same gems, you can combine them to get a gem two quality levels higher.

The quality levels are: Chipped -> Flawed -> Normal -> Flawless -> Perfect -> Great

Gem Chances
At the beginning of the game, every gem you build will be a Chipped gem. By spending an increasing amount of minerals, you can increase this chance at your builder. Eventually you will even be able to build Perfect gems during the build phase!

Mazing
Mazing is highly advised to do well in this game. Start by building a spiral of gems around one of the waypoints, and replacing the mazing rocks close to the center to get more powerful gems near the center of the maze. Over time you can come up with your own methods of creating an effective maze. The key is to maximize the amount of time your high-level combination gems spend attacking the enemies.

Special Combinations
Every basic gem can be combined with two or three other specific gems to create a powerful combination gem. When you build all the parts of a combination, whether by chance during the build phase, or by saving each part one at a time during seperate waves, they will show a special animation and you can initiate the combine using any of the parts. The final gem will appear in place of the gem that used the "Special Combine" ability.

Game Modes
Gem TD has three game modes currently:

Classic Mode, where all players encounter each wave at the same time, and there are boss levels after waves 15, 30, and 50\\
Race Mode, where each player's spawns are independent, and it is a race to finish wave 50 in the shortest amount of time. There are no boss levels in Race Mode.\\
Survival Mode, where all gems do half damage. The challenge is to survive the longest!

Polish / Features

-48 Basic Gems, 8 types of gems each with different abilities (6 quality levels each)
-32 Combination Gems, each with its own model and abilities
-50 Waves of enemies each with its own separate model
-All custom missile arts and sounds
-5(!) different leaderboards to look at while your maze does its business
(lives and waves, player stats, combos & paths, tower damage, tower kills)
-Fully stocked tips menu/combo listing

Special Thanks

-Dustin for helping test and picking out some awesome models for the special towers

-JademusSreg for helping me test at all hours of the night even though he claims to hate all TDs (hes even making one too! Who would have known?)

This map is currently published under the Tower Defense category
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Posts: 953
I played this solo last night, and I really did not like being unable to upgrade existing gems. You say its good to have your more powerful gems at the center of your maze? Well how is that possible when the center of your maze is all chipped because that is where you start your maze at the starting of the game?

Decent game otherwise, but let people upgrade existing gems! For minerals or a couple gas or something.
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Posts: 40
If you're upgrading your chances when you have enough money you shouldn't have more than a few chipped gems at all. And the ones you do take should be working towards combining them into silver or malachite which are both great towers to have in the middle of your maze.
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Posts: 469
There's a game-breaking bug. If a player leaves and he's the last person to finish the wave. The wave won't finish. Its like the game is waiting for the player who left to finish, but all of his stuffs are gone so the wave never ends.
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Posts: 4
Great adaptation of the WC3 map. That was probably the most creative tower defense map around, and I hope that you can do as well at bringing it to SC2.

On bugs: if a mob is killed by another player's towers, then the player for whom the mob is meant can't complete the wave. The score will show as 1 [mob remaining] and -1 for the player with the intruding towers. This might only happen if the killed mob is the last one remaining of the wave.

On balance: the map is, perhaps, too easy once you come up with a decent maze design. It isn't difficult to divide the waypoints into a 4 in, 3 out type of maze, at which point even Survival is a cakewalk. On classic and race modes, it seems as though just a single waypoint enclosed inside a maze is enough.

One great effect of slates from the WC3 version is that they prevented you from planning a maze out to an exact step by step procedure by forcing players to occasionally pick slates, instead of walls or gems, and build around them.
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Posts: 953
I gave the map another play, and once I figured out how to do the special combinations, I did a lot better, though it is based a lot on luck to do well on the map I think. Second time playing it though and I was able to beat it with 9 lives left. The only downside was that I wasn't able to pass the 'damage tests' but oh well.

Decent map anyways. I could see it becoming more popular.. the game I joined today even had 2 other people in it! :p
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Posts: 40
on bugs: i caught all the ones mentioned so far

on balance: i am aware the difficulty drops with a good maze but my problem is

1) if i make ground hard enough to give a maze that long issues, it would completely demolish anyone using anything shorter than that

2) said ground hard enough to traverse such a long maze would take 5-10 minutes or longer to run the maze.

during testing i had damage tests not die and just record damage, and i eventually changed it after i had taken over 20 minutes to complete the test between a long maze and lots of slowing

if anyone has any ideas on the topic, id love to hear about them, feel free to send me a message online, im usually on (arieswind.363)
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Posts: 1,964
The lack of plates makes me sad. It seems like there are some issues with the the bar that displays whether or not you have the necessary gems for construction too. Even if you already have a gem; when a new one spawns it shows up as yellow rather than green. There's also a serious lack of gambling.

Outside of that it looks good. I got my !@# kicked; I guess I need to go dust off my old mazes.

Edit: Also; grats on being second in popularity at the moment.
Edited by Ramenth on 10/3/2011 12:26 AM PDT
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Posts: 1
Fun game, enjoyed mazing and attempting to get some nice towers. It would probably take some of the gambling aspect out of the game but I would like to know the potential upgrades. Air always seems to rock me and I just can't figure out which tower I should build/save/try to upgrade to to counter air. Anyways fun game do let me know if you release a tech tree of sorts :D
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Posts: 10
I noticed a few major bugs and issues with the new version (1.12):

1. Forming a Great gem during Race mode causes the waves to permanently stop coming. There is no way to restart them.
2. During mode selection, changing your vote resets the selection timer. You can apparently do this indefinitely and lots of people have been griefing by just never letting the timer finish.
3. Difficulty selection on Race mode is individual instead of being a vote for the group setting. Obviously this is a problem since people choosing Easy will finish way before people choosing harder difficulties. Even the best players picking Normal will lose 100% of the time to an average player picking Easy.
4. In Classic mode, the difficulty is also individual. This isn't as much of a problem as it is on Race, except that the winner is determined by who does the most damage to the last boss (Tassadar). Because difficulty just nerfs the damage of your towers, again, a player surviving a harder difficulty with zero leaks stands no chance against a player picking Easy.
Edited by Meow on 10/3/2011 3:50 AM PDT
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Posts: 28
I played the Race mode this one time, and when i got to wave 40, and made a great emerald, the wave didnt come. thought i had to wait till someone get to wave 30, but then nothing happened. Would be nicer if there is a way to debug it or fix this glitch. LOL. seriously. I was totally kicking everyone's !@# until that happened.
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Posts: 40
1. Fixed the great gem bug
2. Once all votes are in, the final count down will start, you wont be able to troll anymore by changing every 2-3s
3. In race, when a player finishes wave 50, it will only defeat people on their difficulty or lower, anyone higher can keep playing
4. It says that in classic mode, but it still gives a victory to everyone that is alive at the end of wave 50. defeating the boss or not is merely a matter of personal pride


As an aside, about slates, I felt they were clunky and unintuitive to use. I am finding already that a lot of people are having issues grasping the concept of how to make combinations, so I don't think slates would help the game much. I do have some ideas about new things to add though, so keep your eyes out.
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Posts: 1,964
The lack of Damage Tests in race mode is annoying. Those were what made it interesting in the WC3 version. Seems good other than that (though I still miss Slates).
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Posts: 40
The WC3 version (or at least the ones i played) didn't have damage tests in race mode.
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Posts: 10
Yeah, damage tests are contrary to the race objective of finishing first. In race, you'd most likely be best served by putting a hole in your maze and letting it run straight through to save a few mins of time instead of killing it for the bonus minerals. This is especially true since they don't count as leaks.

I think the biggest balance issue remaining is the Lucky Chance ability. Right now, it costs way too much to both upgrade and use to be anywhere close to worth it. You could balance this in a few ways:

1. Reduce the usage cost to around 50 minerals and keep the upgrade costs where they are.
2. Keep usage cost at 175 and remove upgrades entirely, with the base skill granting the 35% perfect chance.
3. Add more levels of upgrades letting you get a higher max % for perfects than the current ability. If it went up to 100%, it would be a viable option even if the total cost of the upgrades was pretty high. This is probably the most interesting solution.

Thanks for the fixes btw!

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Posts: 40
Lucky chance was added after a string of games where me and everyone else had a ton of minerals left over at the end. Since adding it though i haven't really ever had that many minerals left over to make use of it... I'm actually considering taking it out completely

Edit: I doubled the bonus of each level of lucky chance. Level 5 now gives you an overall 97% (1-.5^5) chance of getting a perfect gem in the round you use it on.
Edited by Arieswind on 10/3/2011 3:26 PM PDT
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Posts: 25
That's definitely an incentive to upgrade to max for certain! perfect balance idea.

You should introduce a "scrub mode".
Which will allow you to upgrade towers you already have to higher towers. Say you have 2 "normals" not in the same round, make it to where once you have that second "normal", you can then upgrade to "flawless". This would be a just for fun mode, or a mode for pure noobs.

What would be really nice if you can get Gem TD listed twice by battle.net. One that will not allow users who have "Less than 5" games in from joining, and one will who allow anyone to join. This will help phase out the noobs in classic mode. Of course this specific feature battle.net might not allow, meaning this might have to go to battle.net suggestion board as well as in this thread.
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Posts: 25
Also I think diamonds are a little too weak. maybe bump it up just 1 percent or add 3 damage.



BTW. Can u add Bosses to race mode too?!? we are starting to get trolls in classic mode that will purposely act like noobs to make the game long.
Edited by Noshe on 10/3/2011 8:14 PM PDT
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Posts: 4
I played this solo last night, and I really did not like being unable to upgrade existing gems. You say its good to have your more powerful gems at the center of your maze? Well how is that possible when the center of your maze is all chipped because that is where you start your maze at the starting of the game?

Decent game otherwise, but let people upgrade existing gems! For minerals or a couple gas or something.


If you ever played Gem TD before, you would not be saying that. You don't need to upgrade existing basic gems to do well in the game.

I gave the map another play, and once I figured out how to do the special combinations, I did a lot better, though it is based a lot on luck to do well on the map I think. Second time playing it though and I was able to beat it with 9 lives left. The only downside was that I wasn't able to pass the 'damage tests' but oh well.

Decent map anyways. I could see it becoming more popular.. the game I joined today even had 2 other people in it! :p


just saw this post, glad that you gave it a second try
Edited by eaglesDP on 10/3/2011 8:56 PM PDT
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