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Starsector 0.9.1a is out! (05/10/19); Blog post: Skills and Story Points (07/08/19)

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Topics - Hussar

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EDIT 09 June 2019: It appears that latest hotfix might have "fixed" gammas as removing the demand boosts the "% of demand met". If so, the whole thread is void. With which I'm more than fine with if that's the case but I haven't yet tested that. Following edit: Actually it appears that what's below does still hold true mostly. Albeit player doesn't influence the global market anymore as Histidine pointed out. I'll be doing a new round of testing and update accordingly.

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So, before 0.9.1, gamma cores were only kinda useful if our colonies begun experiencing "global shortages". However by this point most of us would either invest into Industry Planner perk (which had changed and no longer provides -1 bonus to commodity demand) and more than likely had a few beta and alpha cores lying around ready to use instead of gammas. Thus to some - including myself - gamma cores were useless in all intents and purposes in regards to their colony applications. They were (and still are) useful diplomatic chits - this however ain't subject of this post.

Though overall economy haven't changed in 0.9.1, as it still does adhere to what I do call a "cookie principle" (our colonies eat the cookie (goods) and export the very same cookie (goods) at the same time - taxing them twice), there are now ways of using gamma cores to reduce demand and actually earn a few credits. I'll explain below with a few screenshots how to do it - but first I want to make it clear that this is clearly only an early game solution. As our colonies will grew and we'll produce more and more - effectively filling the in-faction demand - it will nullify the effect of gamma cores and will make you loose money if we keep them on industries and won't remove them/replace them with better AI cores. This is sadly because of the "cookie principle" economy where consumption doesn't affect our possible exports.

With that said, I'll explain the rules on how to actually make gamma's useful early game.


For an example, I'll take my colony of Telcontar - a 50% hazard Terran World in system with another colony - an 100% Jungle world that provides the foodstuffs. At the time I had only 4 gamma cores to use - so keep that in mind.

Colony
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Non-tampered with Telcontar.

What values matter:
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As we're importing food in, and have crew demand met - it translates to 25% of demand fulfilled (and 0.88 modifier - why it is so - I have no idea - (edit: I have idea, annendum at the end of the post) it does however get slashed by planetary conditions [so 50% in this case] and applied across all structures and industries afterwards - so the modifier is 0.44 in the end). We can however push it further, but the thing that does matter for us are not individual industries but the overall market demand. That is why I had marked the Commodities tab on the right - instead of any particular industry.

So, my first move was to drop gamma onto Ground Defenses:
1st gamma
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Reasoning: GD consumes 2 "commodities" that I'm not yet producing in-faction and my faction is forced to import. By doing so I had completely removed the need for heavy armaments and limited the need for marines - effectively removing 2 units of commodities from overall pool of resources needed & counted towards the ratio of demand met through in-faction imports and production. As we can see, the % had risen from 25% to 28% - and we've earned 105 credits. This is nothing of course, but still a welcome change from loosing income as before.

Next I had applied gamma to Patrol HQ:
2nd gamma
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Reasoning: PHQ is the only structure that consumes 2 units of starship hulls (Ship Hulls & Weapons), as spaceport does demand only 1 unit of those. Thus by applying gamma onto PHQ, I had effectively removed another 1 unit of demand from the overall equation. The reduced demand for supplies and fuel (from 2 units down to 1 respectively) is irrelevant here - as there are other structures that do demand two or more units of those. We've pushed overall % of demand met from 28=>29%.

Next I had took a look at fuel situation:
3rd gamma
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Reasoning: Waystation had been the sole reason why demand for fuel was on 3 units at my colony (3 for WS, 2 for PHQ, 1 for Spaceport), and since I've already applied gamma onto PHQ, the difference was even greater (3 WS, 1 for PHQ & SP each). WS does of course demand supplies and crew too, but those commodities are irrelevant in here as other structures does demand same or greater amounts of those. However by applying a gamma core on WS, I had effectively removed another unit of commodity from overall equation - pushing the overall % of demand met from 29=>31%! And getting another 58 credits a month in the process (it's meme worthy but it's still a gain) :x

So, I had one last gamma core left to use. And that's where I'm going to show you the "cookie principle" at work as my two remaining choices were to apply it to either orbital station or population & infrastructure. Tech-mining does not have any demands so placing gamma on that structure is pointless. While SP's demands are 1 unit of fuel, hulls and supplies - so applying gamma there would completely nullify the demand for this building. It wouldn't however affect the overall commodity situation, so it wouldn't lent itself towards a bigger % of demand met. However, if you're loosing shipments due to raiding - dropping gamma on SP might prevent you from loosing further accessibility as SP will be less susceptible to trade disruptions (and completely impervious on size 3).

So, lets first take a loot at what happens when we drop gamma onto Population & infrastructure:
"Cookie Principle" on Pop&Inf
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So, this time we're getting quite different results that perhaps otherwise expected (for those unfamiliar with my laughably named principle). After all, we've clearly lost money - despite % of demand met staying at the same level of 31% (as we still have gammas on GF, PHQ and WS). Why is that?

Although we had eliminated the demand for Recreational Drugs, and limited the demand for Domestic Goods - we had also removed 1 unit of food from equation. Which means that we had eliminated 2 units of imports from the total demand - but we had also removed 1 unit of in-faction imports. Which means that we've reduced in-faction market and demand for foodstuffs we already produce. Which in turn yields us a hit towards monthly income, while removed imports from outside of our faction kept the overall % of demand met on 31%.

In the end, unless we have an axe to grind with smuggling elements - placing a gamma core on population and infrastructure turns to be unprofitable for us. Lets try again, by removing this gamma and placing it on orbital station:
"Cookie Principle" on Orbital Station
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This time results are even more surprising, aren't they?

As the previous 3 gammas are still on their industries (GD, PHQ, WS) - the only effect we've got this time was upon crew demand. Although they're a non-taxable good, they do apparently still count towards the overall % of demand met on the market. And by placing the 4th gamma on OS, we had reduced their demand from 3 units (which we are providing in faction/on planet) down to 2. Effectively removing 1 unit of in-faction imports - thus the 31% dropped down to 27% and we've lost money through reduced discount towards the planetary upkeep. As you can see it raise from 0.84 up to 0.87 which is then slashed in half (because 50% hazard) and applied across all industries and structures.


I hope this post will help those who don't yet understand how to use gamma cores in a way to not loose money.


Edit: *The figure 0.88 comes from 25%/2 (as max in-faction supply is to give us 50% upkeep discount) rounded down, so 100-12=0.88 - then local hazard conditions and possible further 25% from beta/alpha core and 10% from IP perk are being applied.

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Screenshot explains it best I think... I'm not sure why this have happened, neither which mod have caused it really (I'm running both on Nex and DynaSector as it stopped crashing :o ).

mod list:
Spoiler
- Ship & Weapons Pack 1.2.0
- Lightshow for SWP
- Rebalanced Pilums 1.1
- Dynasector 1.2.0
- Arsenal Expansion 1.3.7
- Autosave 1.0f
- Combat Alarm Sounds 1.3
- Combat Chatter 1.7.1
- Comon Radar 2.4c
- Deassault-Mikoyan Engineering 0.9.5c
- Diable Avionics 1.83c
- Galatia Complete 1.4
- Lazy Lib 2.2
- Leading Pip 1.8.1
- Nexerelin 0.8b
- Portrait Pack 1.2.3
- Save Transfer 1.11.0
- Scy Nation 1.31b
- Steiner Foundation 1.2
- Tore Up Plenty 0.8.1
- Underworld 1.1.0
- Unknown Skies 0.21
- Upgraded Rotary Weapons 1.31
- Usable [Redacted] 1.0
- Audio Plus 1.0.4
- Graphics Lib 1.2.0

+ console commands which I'm enabling if something bad or illogical happens (like nexerelin's "drone live's matter!" movements among other factions lol) to fix it.
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It hurts on Iron Mode xD

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So, it kind of bugged me for a while. We get those ships fixed for free, we get quite a hoard of weapons for free, we get some supplies to offset the loss of ones going for CR restoration as well. What we don't get - is crew. Shouldn't we get some (I don't know, like at least 25 or more like 50?) too? I mean, the station commander goes out of it's way to procure all of those things for us (including Mudskipper) as the station is somewhat besieged. Wouldn't it be also plausible for him to find X number of volunteers too? I mean, he already does found dockyard crew that fixed up those ships for us for free.

So that was a lore bit. The player one is - 'its a tutorial and crew is expensive'. I'm pretty sure it will be possible for new players to FAIL the tutorial because of that? They may buy too much stuff and not have money to buy the necessary crew, meantime the ships they gonna pick up won't "pay for it" in case they decided then to sell some of those to get the necessary cash to buy enough for the rest of the ships.

So yeah. Thats just a suggestion after having to (again) play the tutorial. :)

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Bug Reports & Support / Solar Shielding Bug?
« on: May 29, 2017, 07:07:48 PM »
To my understanding, solar shielding mod is to reduce the hefty toll we take upon flying into a solar flare or star corona, as well as when we get into a storm in hyperspace. The reduction is supposed to be a hefty 75%, so I thought I'd give it a go as I have reached a end-game fleet and after long time returned to my home station with dozens of rare weapons and new hullmods unlocked. So, I've started dabbling in the refit screen. And since my transports are unlikely to have to ever ran away again - I mounted a solar shielding on all of them. 8 destroyer sized combat transports (with hardened subsystems and automated repais), 3 medium tankers (UI +Insulated Engines) and 2 cruiser sized transports (HS+UI+IE). In case of all transports I have dropped hardened subsystems and replaced it with solar shielding (they got good peak time anyway if need be).

Long story short. I have proceeded to test it on the nearest star. What was my surprise to notice the supply drain to be HIGHER than before. I have even reloaded back to save prior to adding solar shielding on 13/30 of my ships. Without it I was taking ~164 supply/sec - after installing I had been drained for a hefty 175 supply/sec.

Unless there's something I don't understand, I would expect a supply drain to be less? Or maybe things like automated repairs on 8 of my combat transports is to blame for that? I'm just confused and this really doesn't seem to work as it should/is advertised on the label.

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General Discussion / New Pirate mechanics?
« on: April 29, 2017, 03:37:28 PM »
So I've seen others claiming to have certain pirate bases open for trade with them despite the fact they were basically pirate-hunting heavily before. I have also noticed that some pirate bases will be open to trade with me unless I've been pirate-squashing before in the system. But I didn't gave it much thought before.

But I have started a new playthrough in which I'm intending to be a smuggler. So I don't fight. Pirates or Luddic Path may chase me but I don't fight just retreat - so I'm not worsening my rep with those factions. Which is good since I'm also curious can I befriend some of the hostile factions.

So, recently a luck had it I have made a few deliveries to & from Galatia's Derinkuyu Mining Station which is a pirate outpost... And they turned "independent" for me? They're grey on the outside but the market remains "pirate"...
Spoiler

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I made a quick new game just to check that and I'm not wrong - they were Pirate.
Spoiler
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So does this means that each pirate base have a separate relations chart towards the player or something like that?

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General Discussion / Character Builds?
« on: April 29, 2017, 09:28:25 AM »
Exactly as the title states. Let's share and talk about character builds? I haven't seen a topic about it so hence the idea, and I would be interested to see what others ended up picking up after some time of playing with the new character progression.

Guess I'll start!

Spoiler
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Strong points:
- Fleetwide +10% OP, 85% base CR, -50% to malfunctions on low CR, halved maintenance costs, -25% fuel consumption, lowered terrain penalties and +5 to sustained burn, 10 officers
- Coordinated Maneuvers capped at +25% bonus to speed, favoring bigger deployments, beneficial across the board to both bigger and slower ships as well to fast picket ships (my Kite's (A) with unstable injectors reach 298 speed at 0 flux & 353 on boosters).
- Electronic Warfare capped at +20% (as I have found that either enemy admiral contests you in EW which results in a really shallow margins that can turn around by a sensory buoy during battle or you get total domination in this regard) also favoring bigger deployments.
- Sensors: boosted by 25% and sensory profile reduced by 25% & doubled effect on "go dark" (there's no problem to actually reach lower sensor profile than sensory strength even on a sustained burn if someone wishes)
- Abilities: Neutrino detector and Transverse jump allowing us to jump into hyperspace without use of a jump point - this could be incredibly handy for smuggler playstyle ;)
- You still can endulge yourself into exploration and dismantling derelicts. You're just not proficient at this but what's the problem since moment we score our first 500k or even 1kk paycheck on Sindria?

Downsides:
- Does not support Carrier-as-a-Flagship style much.
- We miss on stronger combat-related abilities for our character.
- We took very little from the new industry path, so this isn't exactly supportive for scavenging and using a lot of D-mod ships (this affects us the most in early game i guess).

In short if I'd had to call it somewhat it would be an Cruiser-Admiral build. You still can fight (and I do that often with my command Eagle) but if our ship gonna have anything going for it will come in form of mods not character skills (with exception of things like Cord.M. skill). I actually kind of like that fact because in combat this means we'll still have to pretty much watch out to not over-commit to the point where a stray sabot will overload our shields and suddenly you'll see harpoons coming at you from everywhere. Perhaps some would say it's more passive gameplay, but I'd say "only if you wish it to be so". In combat you're just going to have a more fragile ship than ones commanded by your officers I'd say. Speaking of them, ability to field 10 of them in your fleet does allow to heavy a really nice complement of carrier and cruiser/destroyer captains.

So, that was mine (:

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