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Starsector 0.9.1a is out! (05/10/19); Updated the Forum Rules and Guidelines (02/29/20); Blog post: GIF Roundup (04/11/20)

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Messages - vagrant

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Does anyone have experience with using hullmods to modify aspects of ship systems?

-I'm looking to create a single, modular shipsystem that can have additional effects and bonuses based on equipped hullmods. I'm comfortable enough doing the actual modifications to the system that I want, but I have no idea how to implement them so that they are applied only when an applicable hullmod is equipped.

I know Interstellar Imperium does this, you should check it out.

This was super informative, thanks Alex and Vayra.

for anyone interested, got it working by adding:

if (ship.getVariant().hasHullMod(hullmod id))

to the apply function inside a Ship System stats script, with a bunch of cases for relevant hullmods. Really easy!

Does anyone have experience with using hullmods to modify aspects of ship systems?

-I'm looking to create a single, modular shipsystem that can have additional effects and bonuses based on equipped hullmods. I'm comfortable enough doing the actual modifications to the system that I want, but I have no idea how to implement them so that they are applied only when an applicable hullmod is equipped.

-Alternatively, is changing a given ship's system to another system entirely, possible with a hullmod?

Any examples I could read through or parts of the API in particular I could look at would be helpful.

I'm not actually 100% sure, depends on the error you're getting. You could also add the SYSTEM hint to weapons etc to make them not show up in the refit screen, that seems like it'll be easier than to try to rip them completely out of the game.

That's a good idea! I'll try it.

On a similar line of thinking, are parts of the main menu easily accessible if I wanted to disable/remove them? As mentioned, i'm only using 'missions' so ideally i'd want to get rid of 'continue', 'new game' 'load game', or at least keep the player from accessing them. If not, i can live with it!

Thanks for all the help so far!

So I'm working on a total conversion that currently is only scoped to include missions. I would like to replace weapon_data.csv so that vanilla weapons don't show up in the refit screen. I was able to replace a handful of other files already without issue, but there seems to be somewhere still trying to load vanilla data and causing a crash during initial startup.

I've replaced:
mission_list.csv, title_screen_variants.csv, sim_opponents.csv, which i thought would be the only places that potentially load ship/variant/weapon data initially (ie before starting campaign generation), but i'm still getting a crash relating to a missing variants.

Am i being naive here? Is the vanilla data more ingrained than i realize or am I missing an obvious place (or option). Any input appreciated.

Edit: my hypothesis currently is that the code responsible for pause screen variants is responsible but i'm not sure where exactly that is... hoping it's not obvious!

General Discussion / Sector Settings
« on: August 06, 2019, 12:23:02 PM »
So I know many of us here have been playing the game for quite a while, and have developed our own preferences on how starsector should be configured. I personally have made a handful of changes to my settings.json and wanted to see if anyone else had changes of their own that they have enjoyed playing with.

Notable changes in my settings file:
"sectorHeight":500000,  // These required me to resize the hyperstorm map as well to fit properly

"speedPerBurnLevel":40,    //doubled from vanilla to facilitate larger sector size



//target rich environment


//Up from 85% max and down from 15% minimum. Makes armor and the lack of it feel much more significant. Fragmentation is especially useless at high armor totals and especially deadly without any. Makes holes in armor feel even more meaningful to defend.


//Up from 50, not nearly as crazy as it looks. Ships don't gain additional accel/decel or maneuver so this boost is only really good for pre-battle and between engagements. Pursuits are faster, but not safer by any real margin.

Has anyone else made changes to these or any other areas of their settings to customize Starsector to their liking?

General Discussion / Re: New to StarSector - I need help
« on: August 03, 2019, 12:09:41 PM »
I've only just started playing StarSector, and while I'm very much enjoying most of what I've seen of the game thusfar, combat alone is turning out to be more-or-less a dealbreaker with this game, especially with how much the game is emphasizing it's an unavoidable aspect.

- I have no sense of momentum when controlling ships. I regularly am not sure if the ship I'm piloting is still moving, because other ships often seem to match momentum with mine (so all ships friendly or enemy in the encounter are strafing/moving unanimously in the same direction, with the visual illusion that all are perfectly still with the exception of their gunfire), and there's no background detail to give me a sense of direction and speed. This causes me a big problem with leading targets, or determining if I've been hit with an EMP and my engines are disabled, because I don't even know for sure if I'm moving in the first place.

Also, I forgot to specifically ask if there is a mod that changes the WASD keys to function as cardinal directions instead of moving the ship relative to the direction it faces: The option to make the ship always face the mouse cursor isn't really helping with this, because of the relativistic thrust of the WASD keys.

So I have this problem too, especially in hectic fights and I like using the 'T' key, which is a toggle that centers your camera on your target, to do a few things:

-First, break the relative movement illusion by giving myself a constant reference point

-Second, strip away from the other ui clutter, especially when I'm on my old macbook at a small resolution

-Third, give me semi-absolute controls because the viewport is locked.

Also I pause judiciously in hectic fights because the AI loves to sneak a torpedo up your engine port when you aren't looking.

For general advice:

The combat is hard, and is very technical, especially on normal. Do not be afraid to use easy mode for learning or just to play the game. Just like M&B you take less damage and deal more.

Learn the damage types and think about how to best manipulate them. Many of my ships are heavily kinetic-damage focused because I value flux pressure on enemies above pretty much anything else.

As you play the game, you'll learn to identify hulls on sight and get a general idea of their strengths and weaknesses and capabilities. Where certain ships aren't covered by guns or shields, or other ways to exploit them (low flux cap, low dissipation, low armor, low turning speed). Same goes for weapons

Play with the simulator, and the mission mode to get a sense of what size and tech level ships you like to pilot personally, and have supporting you. You'll also learn what kinds of enemies you struggle against and how to deal with them.

Speed and Range are VERY important factors to consider. If you significantly outspeed or outrange an enemy, you can much more easily control engagements, regardless of the situation.

Don't be afraid to fight close together with allies. It will help the combat feel less unforgiving because they can keep you from being surrounded and caught out as easily, and also just mitigate enemy pressure by giving them more targets to wail on.

Overall, use what works for you, Starsector's combat is deep and varied and very flexible. Hope this helped!

RE Ship disablement:

I find this frustrating and unclear as well. The game should definitely inform you better when your piloted ship has any systems disabled. The visuals and sound for an overload are great and clear, but getting your engines/weapons disabled can feel frustrating, arbitrary and unclear, especially from EMP.

Discussions / Re: Void Destroyer 2
« on: June 27, 2019, 07:56:24 AM »
I recorded a quick gameplay demo around a minute in length of a patrol mission dogfight in a light fighter if anyone is interested.

Void Destroyer 2: Quick Patrol Dogfight

I also recorded a short escort mission in a larger ship in third person, sorry about bleh quality.

Void Destroyer 2: Short Escort Mission

Discussions / Void Destroyer 2
« on: June 26, 2019, 06:33:34 AM »
I've had this game in my library for about a year but only a few days ago committed some brainpower to learning how it works and I'm really happy I did.

Features as I've experienced them:

-It's a space pilot sim, with a fairly large number of ships.
-Ships range from fighters to frigates (as far as I've seen) and each ship is fairly unique to pilot
-Variety of missions and activities (trading, escort, patrol, mining, racing are what I've seen)
-Overworld/strategic movement layer for moving between stations / intercepting fleets, etc
-Fleet building and customization
-Hot swap between fleet ships at any time to pilot them
-Swap to turret seats and let your crew pilot the ship
-Set turrets to auto or manual (really satisfying watching railguns blast someone automatically)
-On demand slow motion / tactical pause accessible from anywhere
-Tactical view for fleet command in battle
-Sandbox as well as story starts to the game. (I haven't touched the story at all, just been enjoying playing sandbox missions)
-Faction system I haven't figured out yet
-Steady progression and flexible difficulty, really gives you options for how you want to build your fleet immediately.
-Mod support and modding community (seems like there are multiple mods already available on the steam forums but I haven't played around with them yet)
-Active development (but already well fleshed out), developer seems really engaged and thoughtful.

Has anyone else played this, or have any thoughts on it?

General Discussion / Re: Integrated PD AI
« on: June 06, 2019, 05:36:06 PM »

Even more important is that I think PD in general (As well as those converted via IPDAI) should be able to pass-over friendly ships. Fighters and their ordnance can, so why shouldn't the weapons used to defend against them be able to?

This would be awesome to test out. I wonder how it would alter combat tactics and balance? There'd certainly be more incentive to stay in a tight group for maximum PD overlap, and I'd imagine dedicated PD screen ships would be much more effective, as they basically would never have to worry about finding firing angles.

General Discussion / Re: Expedition Fleet Sizes: Capital Skew
« on: May 31, 2019, 11:23:58 AM »
Given that frigates were now brought into discussion regarding roles, would it be wise for the fleet size to be OP-based, given how a fair bit of the other mechanics are OP based as well? If you want seventy frigates, you can, same if you want eight capitals, but that won't penalise you for having 30 frigates or allow you to be 'overpowered' by stacking 30 capitals (not that that would be entirely feasible but colony defence sometimes calls for that sort of shenanigans).

I mean, that would lead way to a having a single 'slider' in the options that's more holistic in its approach, that controls everything from map size/fleet size/battle size and guarantees a good experience if you want a smaller more tactical game or more swarmy.

I've been thinking about OP-balancing fleets as well.

-The problems that I see arise with OP-MAX-balance alone is that it does not account for ship and weapon quality, or for campaign-layer modifications. A OP-balanced game would trend towards the 'optimal' use of a given limit of ordinance points. Small weapons get crushed here, as do ships with poor flux stats that must invest heavily into them. I'm not sure if the desired end-state of starsector's balance is that high-tech is simply superior OP-for-OP versus low-tech, but balancing in this manner would certainly encourage that.

-Another problem I have here is that the AI does not care about logistics or strategic costs, and does not experience any real disadvantages on the campaign layer. AI Logistics ships are simply loot balloons for the player to pop, rather than strategic targets to attack, as there is no way for the player to impede the AI in that manner. On the other hand, losing a logistics ship from a player fleet can be devastating. While both the AI and the Player would feel the OP tax from using logistics ships, the player is the only one truly impacted in the case they are lost.

-If there was better simulation of AI fleets that more closely matched the player's requirements, I could see OP-MAX-Balance working. Right now, AI fleets have no supplies, fuel, crew, or self-preservation to worry about, they will ALWAYS throw everything they have at the player, while the player must consider the encounter within the context of their greater campaign plan of action. Given that all of these campaign-layer logistics can be measured in credits (roughly), perhaps AI fleets should use this as a simple metric of how many resources they are willing to risk in any given engagement, relative to the maximum amount of logistics resources they generated with.

In this way: A LP fleet might be comfortable rushing you with every ship right away regardless of the state of the fleet, given their nature as cultists. However, A pirate fleet centered around a flagship may turn tail and run if that flagship is destroyed during their initial assault using it. Tri-Tachyon fleets could be opportunistic and very willing to cut even minor losses. Hegemony fleets could be the opposite, bloodhound-like and requiring significant damage to be done to them before they even consider retreat.

I think this would help enemy fleets feel more like real actors you are contending with, rather than zero-sum drones out to annihilate you, and I think it help it would reinforce the thematic and gameplay differences between the factions.

-I'd love to see Alex's thoughts on fleet balancing, has he posted about it / mentioned it anywhere recently? I'm really glad to see these kinds of threads pop up so I know I'm not alone in my thoughts!

General Discussion / Re: Frustration abound
« on: May 31, 2019, 08:26:58 AM »
For a while, I had a bunch of 200k bounties (around cycle 209) until I slaughtered several (with close wins), then the bounties spiked to 300k+ multi-capital slugfests.  I am not sure time scaling is to blame, but the old-fashioned fleet kill scaling may be too fast now that ships are more expensive and harder to obtain, meaning slower fleet build-up than before.

But yes, there is a noticeable spike from 200k to 300k.  Also, 300k+ can vary from a few capitals that are not too difficult to destroy with a similar fleet of your own, to another with ten or so capitals and the rest filled mostly with cruisers, and because there is no way to deploy that much metal at once even with map size 500, it will be a real slog.  At map size 300, such multi-capital fights devolve into 3v3, or even 2v2 if one of the ships involved is Paragon.

Agreed on the scaling. I like bounties that push the capabilities of my current fleet and my piloting / commanding, but as fleet sizes increase to slog-levels, I lose interest.

Starsector has my favorite combat mechanics in a game, period. I recognize I'm very much on the side of combat-as-sport, but I think where that combat shines most brightly is when the player reaches the point where they must contend and consider the capabilities and merits of EACH ship class. Once bounty fleets scale outside of that realm I think the magic of the combat system falls apart, and it either turns into a drawn out slog, or requires the use of exploitative or degenerate strategies to succeed.

I think there is a place and time for slog-level capital slugfests, but I don't think these should be the norm, especially towards the latter half of the game. Battles in starsector that take a long time to complete due to enemy fleets greatly exceeding the battle size cap, and thus trickle deploying a procession large ships for the player to chew through really start to drag when they become the norm. 

If exploitative or degenerate strategies are required for late-game content, I lose interest, because at that point, I'm bypassing the systemic interactions that made the game interesting for me in the first place. Further, this ruins the strategic side of gameplay for me as well. A solved tactical layer means that incorrect strategic decisions will have much less impact on the player, as they can cheese their way through the content that would otherwise punish them for these mistakes.

When battles start to go towards this end of the spectrum, I find myself abandoning my savegame. Fleet building and battling for these purposes is not interesting to me, as I find it lacks any nuance or variety.

General Discussion / Re: High Zero-Flux Speed Boost
« on: April 29, 2019, 02:30:23 PM »
My experience with testing faction-specific hullmods has been that doubling zero-flux boost is as high as I'm comfortable going without some kind of downside.
500 speed means you can outrun all missiles.  Interesting idea; I wonder if maybe setting up LRMs with really high final velocities might make for a fun style; sure, you can run, but you can't outrun missiles.

I think this might be a fun idea, honestly; not quite sure on the speed, but it'd certainly get rid of a lot of the boring parts of chasing things around.  Problem is, most of the time, in large fights, shields never stay down long, because of fighters; I'm more-or-less leaning more and more on mechanics that permit shields to stay up while moving faster into combat ranges; I may try killing shield upkeep again with a faster speed, see how that feels.

I have noticed missile outrunning occurring but usually only when missiles are fired at a target that has yet to engage. Noted, definitely something to look into.

To be honest i've been tweaking armor max and min percentages as well to facilitate and encourage use of the new bigger boost. My only worry about shields up with the speed boost is that pursuits will become impossible to realistically complete. I like making the player choose between active defense measures (shield and speed) while using their passive defense measure (armor) to supplement and transition them.

I want ships to have more agency to pick and choose fights, but i also don't want them to be able to escape a poor judgement call totally unscathed.

General Discussion / Re: High Zero-Flux Speed Boost
« on: April 29, 2019, 11:48:06 AM »
It might be interesting to experiment with moderately faster zero flux boosts, but I think 500 is over the top :P. Safety Overides... good god can you imagine piloting a Dominator at 550 speed at all times? It would probably drift like crazy and bumper car into things.

I chose 500 to emulate the travel drive // greatly equalize out of combat ship speeds. The idea was to eliminate the least fun part of combat / ship piloting which is put putting around in battlespace between engagements, ESPECIALLY in slow craft.

The change to safety overrides was unintentional, but i'm not bothered. I never liked vanilla SO as it always just communicated "short term short range specialist mod" rather than any kind of "Safety Override" to me. The AI has a hard time piloting these ships, yes, but in an entertaining and not horribly annoying way so far in my experience.

I agree there is room for balance, but the large change is intentional, not random. Acceleration and maneuverability stats have made the changes much more graceful than I expected.

General Discussion / Re: High Zero-Flux Speed Boost
« on: April 29, 2019, 11:31:50 AM »
We had over-top-speed inertial movement too. Well... we, the players. AI didn't use it.

But 500 bonus speed would allow to dogpile numerically inferior opponents way too easily. And numerically inferior side is usually the player. So basically, (fast) zombie rush every time?

In my experience it's not so simple, dogpiles can actually be broken out of and bigger ships can still muscle through with armor coverage while they have it. The enemy can get on top of you and around you more quickly, but coherent deathballs are rare (so far), meaning it's much easier to manipulate and work around the enemy.

I'm only piloting a medium size fleet (4 cruisers, 4 destroyers, 5 frigates) so I'll keep your thoughts in mind as things scale up. I'm finding battles more fun and less tedious at every size so far, hopefully that stays true!

General Discussion / High Zero-Flux Speed Boost
« on: April 29, 2019, 07:47:26 AM »
Has anyone else tried playing with a drastically heightened zero-flux speed boost, say 500 instead of 50?

I started a campaign last night using it and it's been a very different feeling, battles start more quickly, cover much more space, break into groups more often, and overall feel fast and dynamic.

I chose 500 because it seems about the speed ships burn in at and I wanted to mimic the feeling of a ship putting power to engines and engaging a travel burn drive. I love the feeling and functionality it provides across all ship classes as well.

Since ships in starsector have defined accel/decel and maneuverability stats, the additional top speed isn't as broken as it sounds, as functionally, ships aren't built to handle at these boosted speeds. The game also beautifully handles automatically braking you down to combat speeds once you start burning flux, so ships aren't zipping around uncontrollably all the time.

Things i've noticed:

-Every ship can charge screaming into engagements and it feels *** cool. Some ships take a long time to get up to speed.
-Playing low top speed ships no longer feels like trudging through sludge, as you can get around to different engagements easily before digging in for a fight.
-Playing faster ships now emphasizes your ability to control engagements even further, but slow ships are not helpless as you dance around them.
-Frigates feel genuinely useful at any battle size, now able to advance quickly and skillfully under long range enemy fire.
-Pursuits are fast moving and require decisiveness, the new top speed means ships get away FAST when you aren't paying attention.
-Calling in reinforcements feels *** cool when they all punch into the engagement you're struggling with.
-Flux capacity/dissipation is now very very important for determining your movement options in a given engagement. Using your armor to soak damage while you vent and angle for escape feels natural.
-I didn't think about safety overrides before making the change. It really feels like safety overrides now. Pathers appropriately feel like cultists and not weirdly competent close combat specialists as they wildly zip around before burning out.
-Accidental ramming happens but hasn't been as impactful as I expected.

Overall i'm enjoying it a lot! I might post updates / other things i notice. Has anyone else experimented with this?

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