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Starsector 0.9.1a is out! (05/10/19); Blog post: Painting the Stars (02/07/20); Updated the Forum Rules and Guidelines (02/29/20)

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Messages - TaLaR

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Suggestions / Re: Escort Coordination: Rule for Small Ship PPT
« on: February 27, 2020, 12:13:33 AM »
I think radius based approach could work for AI too - in most cases executing escort order would already put them within necessary radius. Or just sitting on defend order with larger ships.
And if they get pushed away from escort target - well... Good job, enemy team! Defeat in detail is valid tactic.
If anything, PPT not decaying despite being half map away from escort target would be kind of exploitable.

Escort order as it exists now can often lead to sub-optimal or sometimes suicidal behavior, I really prefer to use Defend, which wouldn't be an option under your proposal.

However even that runs into a problem: how to communicate what that radius is to the player, other than keeping an eagle eye on the PPT gauge.

Game already hides a bit too much info to my liking - exact ship system radius (my), ship velocity vectors (my and target), exact collision radius (target, needed to know where you can place mines/teleport), exact ship explosion radius (target, for phase ships). Of course stuff like this should be optional and off by default. Highlighting areas of PPT protection from allied ships would fall in same category.
Could also add more visible indicator of when PPT/CR is ticking.

... or carriers under 100% replenishment
This seems a little overly harsh on carriers. I agree they need balance tweaks, but CR isn't meant to be the main limiting factor to their effectiveness like its supposed to be on SO and phase ships. It also begs the question of what exactly counts as a carrier: does any destroyer with CH count? What about a frigate with a drone system?

True, maybe carriers don't really need an exception here.

Suggestions / Re: Escort Coordination: Rule for Small Ship PPT
« on: February 26, 2020, 11:01:53 PM »
I very much like that at least in combat AI operates under same rules as player. This goes into "magic" orders category (being able to do something otherwise impossible on direct order) and would become a huge exception - AI piloted frigate can extend it's PPT, but player piloted one can't (=forcing player to pilot only largest ships).

Unless you could formulate it in some order-independent way, like simply being around larger allied ships stops PPT decay as long as larger ship has more. Actually, seems elegant and simple to me.
EDIT: Except currently phased phase ships or carriers under 100% replenishment.

General Discussion / Re: Whats your favorite capital ship
« on: February 26, 2020, 08:24:09 PM »
Dual Gauss Legion is extremely fragile, overfluxed, and terrible at carrier role (due to limited OP resulting from gauss cannons).

Sure, it's pretty much Talons or other very cheap fighters build.
Yet it still wipes the floor with XIV Legion in a duel, without having to rely on limited ammunition. And shows much better results dueling other capitals as well.

General Discussion / Re: So let's try to find the worst weapon on vanilla
« on: February 26, 2020, 09:10:54 AM »
As anyone ever found anything to do with it?

Pilum defence.

You are always better off spending same OP budget on basic PD lasers, even if you fill fewer slots.

General Discussion / Re: So let's try to find the worst weapon on vanilla
« on: February 26, 2020, 07:36:14 AM »
I think the difference between light needler and railgun is far more significant in AI hands rather than in player hands. Ship behavior on both sides is altered by flux levels and the needler surges flux quickly. A needler burst can quickly bring a ship towards overload, so the attacker will push in harder than normal. Good for staying on the attack and ultimately scoring kills.

But also suicidal against superior opponent that can simply shrug off your burst. Where Railgun user would have had enough flux to shield and retreat, Needler-user is much more likely to take damage.

Suggestions / Re: Making the Hyperion Useful
« on: February 25, 2020, 07:45:39 AM »
Perfectly piloted Hyperion is essentially invulnerable while PPT/CR lasts and can keep unload Mining/Heavy blaster shots into target of it's choice non stop. Only constantly raised 360 shield protects against it.

Compared to that AI Hyperion is waste of DP. AI needs ideal duel circumstances without distractions to be able to kill Eagle/Dominator, which usually won't happen in a fleet battle.

No AI ship is perfect, but simple ships like Eagle display decent approximation of what the ship can do. AI tries to pilot Hyperion as any other frigate. It's not. It could have 0 normal move speed and still be viable, that's how dependent on teleport Hyperion is.

Suggestions / Re: Small Paragon nerf
« on: February 25, 2020, 04:10:51 AM »
Imo nerfing individual capitals is not the point. 10 officers limit encourages using only few big ships. You'd have to nerf every capital and cruiser into the ground before using massed frigates + DEs becomes the better option despite not being able to leverage officers as much.

Suggestions / Re: Small Paragon nerf
« on: February 25, 2020, 01:56:56 AM »
100%->80% range buff changes will not kill the ship.

It might actually. Paragon already has Gauss Conquest as it's natural predator. AI isn't smart to properly exploit (hard-flux) range + speed advantage, but there really isn't much a Paragon can do against a competent Gauss Conquest.

Longest range hard flux energy weapons are Autopulse and Plasma at 700. With 80% ATC this means 1260.
Typical large ballistic weapon has 900 range. With 60% ITU this means 1440.
Oops, now Paragon is significantly(at capital speeds) outranged by every ballistic capital and essentially becomes an oversized punching bag.

General Discussion / Re: So let's try to find the worst weapon on vanilla
« on: February 24, 2020, 08:13:12 PM »
LR-PD seems like a good idea, but in practice, regular PD lasers work better for point defense, and Tactical Lasers work better at long range.

 2-3 LRPD are good to intercept 1-2 Sabots for cheap. And a bit of flux efficient soft flux damage. Basically it's for Eagle and Falcon.

Suggestions / Re: Making the Hyperion Useful
« on: February 24, 2020, 10:50:54 AM »
All AI controlled ships try to aim at the centre of the ship. But the AI controlled Hyperion does know to teleport to the rear of ships and fire so it will bypass any frontally fixed shields.

It targets spot behind the enemy yes, BUT doesn't take current distance to target into account. Which leads to appearing in front of target and getting pummeled when Hyperion does so from too far.
AI also can use teleport only about third as often as system cooldown actually allows, which makes the above situation even more deadly.

General Discussion / Re: What is everybody's favorite weapon
« on: February 24, 2020, 05:23:43 AM »
Autopulse is the best weapon for the best ship, Radiant with 5x Autopulse + 4x Grav beams is bonkers and is hard to handle even for player piloted Paragon (skill-less duel). But we can't pilot these.
While ships we can pilot lack either speed (Paragon) or slots (Odyssey) to use AP as main weapon.

Suggestions / Re: Small Paragon nerf
« on: February 24, 2020, 04:46:34 AM »
Unfortunately the AI is so good that the player can't do too much to make it better.

Oh, player can do significantly better with Paragon as well. It's just not really necessary - player piloted Conquest/Odyssey with character skills kill fast enough, so move speed generally contributes more at that point (since it prevents enemies from fleeing).

AI is atrocious at target prioritization and easily splits attention between many ships instead of properly focus firing them one by one (why would you do that with a soft flux build?...).
AI also gets way less mileage out of TachLances than player, since it doesn't understand the timing part of it and doesn't vent anywhere near often enough.

Suggestions / Re: Hypothetical Capital Phase-Ship
« on: February 24, 2020, 02:35:57 AM »
Phase cloak itself has negative size scaling - it gets worse as ship grows larger and slower. It would be almost useless to a capital (and doesn't do that much for Doom either), so like Doom a phase capital would have to be a ship completely defined by it's (overpowered) ship system. Or built-in unique hullmods/weapons.

General Discussion / Re: What do you set the max battle size to?
« on: February 24, 2020, 02:30:58 AM »
500, because I want a fleet battle, not just a long series of duels at 300.

Suggestions / Re: Small Paragon nerf
« on: February 24, 2020, 02:27:37 AM »
For all the talk of how powerful it is, I almost never pilot it. Conquest and Odyssey allow better player skill leverage imo. And are more convenient campaign-wise due to 8 Burn.

Fortress Shield is already a burden to AI in some cases. AI simply uses it too much:
- There is a behavior I call "suicide by fortress shield" when targeted AI Paragon converts incoming soft flux from TachLances into hard flux, when TL flux wouldn't have been enough to kill it.
- Dual Squalls on Conquest cause similar effect (correct counter is well-timed armor venting, not turtling up with Fortress Shield).

AI is very bad at using abilities that have strict timing requirements or drawbacks. Just look at any Burn drive ship. This would be very bad for Paragon as AI ship, but probably mean nothing for player piloting (I rarely use FS anyway).

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