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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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Messages - Serenitis

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Modding / Re: [0.9.1a] Boggled's Terraforming Mod (v2.0.0)
« on: November 16, 2019, 10:33:02 AM »
That looks like a Magnetic world from the Unknown Skies mod. If so, that might explain why it doesn't work.

Mods / Re: [0.9.1a] Ship/Weapon Pack 1.10.4
« on: November 16, 2019, 10:20:06 AM »
I also kinda question what the point of adding the Reliant to the game was. Buuut that's enough of my complaining.
It plinks, and it plonks. Why would you need it to do anything else?

General Discussion / Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« on: November 16, 2019, 10:14:57 AM »
Year 3
1 Heron carrier (flag)
3 Captained escorts (Shrike, Centurion, Afflictor)
4 Wolf frigates
4 Shepherd drone tenders (because A. they have salvage platforms, and B. anything slow as a Salvage Rig at combat speed 50, gets caught by pirates)
8 Combat Freighters of various types (Wayfarer, Hound, Cerberus)
5 Dram tankers

This fleet runs out of fuel, runs out of supplies, and even when it doesn't, spends all that 485,144 credits emptying out multiple planets for supplies and fuel. (When even Chicomoztoc doesn't have enough supplies for you, you might just be overdoing it. Just a bit.)

Doesn't seem like a bad fleet. It might be that you're still paying "full price" for the upkeep on them.
The only thing I'd suggest changing is leaving your carrier(s) inder AI control, and picking a combat flagship that suits your taste so you can more effectively pressure or run interference. Or take advantage of openings.
That's a personal choice though. Do whatever you're happiest with.

First thing to consider for getting that maintenance down is finding the spec for the Efficiency Overhaul mod, and fitting that to everything in your fleet.
This will reduce your supply upkeep and fuel usage, reduce your minimum crew requirements, and increase the rate at which ships recover combat readiness.

The next thing to do is look in your character skills. On the green Leadership row, there is a Fleet Logistics skill which reduces the supply upkeep for your entire fleet.
On the blue Technology row there is a Navigation skill which reduces the rate your fleet burns fuel.
You want both of these.
You'll need 4 skill points for Logistics. And 6 for Navigation.

The next bit requires a bit of divergence from "normal", and costs a non-trivial amount of skill points. And only works if your ships are damaged and have (D) mods.
Firstly you will need to spend 3 skill points on opening up the yellow Industry skills to maximum.
And then put another 3 skills into Safety Procedures, which cuts all the negative effects of (D) mods in half. (Also allows you to Emergency Burn with no supply/readiness cost, which is really nice.)
Then another 3 points into Field Repairs. This is the biggie, it makes every (D) mod on every ship reduce the supply upkeep cost.

If you're still struggling for fuel, it may be worth putting another 3 points into Recovery Operations to increase the amount of fuel you get from salvage by 50%.

Doing this, it is possible to accumulate so many supplies that you end up throwing them overboard due to not enough room.
The caveat to this, is that you need to lean fairly heavily into combat, and become confident enough to take on multiple fleets, sometimes back-to-back to get your supplies and fuel.
And don't forget to put bulkheads on everything or use damage control skills to make sure everything can be recovered, with more cost-saving (D) mods.

There's a neat skill tool here if you want to see what the skills do outside the game.

General Discussion / Re: am I the only one who never buys ships?
« on: November 13, 2019, 11:30:01 AM »
Another Industry fan.
I love junkfleets and zombie ships. They are literally perfect for exploration away from the core.

Suggestions / Re: Activating Phase cloak woes
« on: November 11, 2019, 10:09:17 AM »
I've also done this with both cloak and shields.

One other thing about your ship being the visual indicator is that depending on how you play, your ship is not nescessarily where you are focusing your attention most of the time.
If you are using turn-to-pointer behaviour, there's a good chance your view is going to be centred on whatever you're targeting rather than your ship.

Not sure how you'd approach this though.
Putting an indicator on the pointer might make it more visible, but it also might make it more distracting.

I'd expect the effects of Decivilized Subpopulation to depend on how big the original colony was when it collapsed.

You could do something (vaguely) like this by giving each instance of the decivilised condition a hidden stat on sector generation.
For the sake of argument this stat could be a plain number with a value between 500 and 5000.

When a colony is created on a decivilised world, the hidden stat counts down by 1 for every game day that passes. And once the number reaches 0, the condition is removed.
500 days ~ 16 months
5000 days ~ 14 years
The 'amount' of extra population you get is then based on how long the condition lasts.

You could further qualify this by requiring a certain level of stablity to run the count down.
Trying to artificially lower stability to keep the deciv growth boost longer shouldn't work, as the growth penalty for low stability would negate it (I think).
During generation you could weight this to prefer larger numbers on habitable worlds if you preferred.

Probably not workable, but a fun diversion.

General Discussion / Re: Mods for Nomad play style.
« on: November 04, 2019, 11:08:31 AM »
What is a nomadic playstyle?
Not having any fixed base/storage. And carrying with you everything you own.
You don't need any mods to do this, but there are several which make things easier by adding mechanics (fuel siphoning), or just adding useful ships (literally every faction/ship pack).

Of all the mods, there are two standouts which add ships that really help:
Blackrock - Hawkmoth Tanker
Ship & Weapon Pack - Circe Combat Freighter & Vortex Light Carrier

Modding / Re: [0.9.1a] Boggled's Terraforming Mod (v0.9.1)
« on: November 02, 2019, 10:02:41 AM »
Thank you for the explanation.

I'd say just get rid of the planet-type checks.

In theory (and I might be wrong about this) you could keep the player owned check, the station check, the darkness check, and the atmosphere checks.
And completely ignore planet types, and you'd still be restricted from terraforming most of the planets in the game because:

Darkness restrictions automatically eliminate ALL nebula/black hole planets, plus many "outer system" worlds.
Disallowing no atmosphere automatically eliminates ALL barren/rocky/unstable/metallic worlds.
Disallowing thin atmosphere automatically eliminates ALL barren desert worlds, and a significant number of cryo/volcanic/frozen/radiated worlds.
(And it becomes "mod neutral" since it's not looking up specific ids.)

I don't want the player to spend a lot of time and money building reflectors around a planet that can't benefit (or a station). This would be frustrating and confusing.
Even if you don't allow actual terraforming, removing temperature conditions is definitely a benefit.

Modding / Re: [0.9.1a] Boggled's Terraforming Mod (v0.9.1)
« on: November 02, 2019, 08:51:52 AM »
Firstly, thank you for this!

From the above, I can see the following restrictions.
(Please correct me if I'm wrong)

Cannot terraform anything which:
  • Is not a planet
  • Has no atmosphere
  • Has thin atmosphere
  • Is in total darkness
  • Is not a vanilla entity

Is this correct?

One of the confusing things I've encountered is this:
By the rules this world should qualify to build a mirror.
It has a "normal" atmosphere.
It isn't dark.
I think the problem here is that it's a Cryo world. And those are not defined in the code.
(lava and lava_minor are also not defined.)

I'm not sure if the player distance thing is working properly.
This is the third attempt I've made at terraforming a planet with mirrors, and it never does anything but count the number of cycles remaining up. It started at < 3 cycles.
I made sure to leave the system entirely, and still nothing.

I wonder if there's a way to call planet categories rather than individual id types?
This would make the code a lot simpler, and support procgen mods (like Unknown Skies).

Modding / Re: [0.9.1a] Boggled's Terraforming Mod (v0.9.1)
« on: October 31, 2019, 12:10:59 PM »
a check to make sure the player isn't too close when the planet changes appearance.
That would explain why it didn't change.
What is the cutoff for this? How far away do you have to be?

Tried again, this time leaving the system entirely.
Planet never changed, and the completion note on the mirror tooltip kept counting up.

In that case, mirrors can only remove the "poor light" condition from barren planets, unless the player is using some other mod to generate barren planets that have an atmosphere. 
That's fine.
Nothing wrong with limits.

"Thick enough atmosphere" means the market does not have the "no atmosphere" or the "thin atmosphere" condition.
Is the terraforming ability being 'allowed' purely down to the atmosphere, or are there other factors?

Could you set out a definitive list of requirements/limitations for these buildings please?
I'm having some trouble understanding why I can't build mirrors in places which would logically benefit from them and otherwise meet the atmosphere/darkness requirements, but am unable to build anything because I'm being told there would be no benefit.

Modding / Re: [0.9.1a] Boggled's Terraforming Mod (v0.9.1)
« on: October 30, 2019, 01:01:40 PM »
Encountered some weirdness when constructing mirrors with the new version:
Built the mirrors and they removed the cold condition.
Tooltip on the industry panel said "less than 2 cycles".
Checked periodically and saw roughly in sequence
"less than 17 cycles"
"less than 9 cycles"
"less than 2 cycles" (again)
"less than -6 cycles" (what)
"less than 19 cycles"
The planet never changed type/terraformed.

Not really sure what this is trying to tell me, but I'm fairly sure something isn't quite working right.
(Although the reduced hazard rating would technically be enough to consider it terraformed. To a degree.)

Barren planets can be improved with this mod - you can remove poor light (but not darkness!) and hot or cold temperatures if the planet has a reasonably thick atmosphere. Anything further than that would not make sense lore-wise in my opinion.
Tried several barren worlds and the tooltip said either "atmosphere not thick enough" or "no conditions can be improved".
What counts as reasonably thick atmosphere in this context?
Worth noting cat_barren are all set to no atmosphere in the procgen. So if your trigger is atmosphere >0, then barren worlds will never be able to build terraforming as the building will be looking for a condition that cannot exist.

General Discussion / Re: Class V 300% hazard planet
« on: October 30, 2019, 12:05:51 PM »
If it was in an agreeable system, I would colonise that planet in a heartbeat.
Growth will be glacial (hurr), but that's not an insurmountable problem.

The hazard makes it not 'optimal'. But its certainly workable.
Unlike the previous versions where hazard ratings like that would be a hard no.
As mentioned - not a place you'd want your main colony, but fine for a second.

General Discussion / Re: Hyperspace Storms: Unfun or Necessary?
« on: October 27, 2019, 05:29:50 AM »
Hyperspace being "empty" is not really a problem. It just highlights the scale of things.

As far as games go, the closest I've seen to doing long distance travel in a way that is somewhat similar to Starsector, but isn't very obviously trying to throw things in the player's way deliberately, is Star Control 2.
Pick a destination, and go. No tedious micromanagement required (most of the time). And the only occaision you need to do anything more involved is when you want to avoid another game entity.

Translating that to Starsector (None of this is a suggestion or request)
How I would do hyperspace is to make 'deep' hyperspace have varying degrees of opaqueness to sensors (blinding), but otherwise have no further negative effects. Storms would be entirely cosmetic, they're only there for atmosphere.
(You could have them capable of being triggered by fleet movement if you want to give the player clues...)
And travel speed would be much higher. Not nescessarily higher as in faster physical speed, but more like compressed time so the player isn't waiting around so much but it still takes the same amount of game time to get places.

The player can then just go somewhere with no hassle, but the limited visibility creates places where other fleets can lurk, which in turn creates a choice - avoid the fluffy bits because you don't know what's in there, or just go through.
This choice in itself changes priority as the player progresses.
Early game it might not be worth taking the risk, but you don't yet have all that high maint. costs, so going round isn't going to cost you much. But it's safer.
Late game you might not care what is hiding there, and you might also be quite fed up of having to constantly baby your fleet around "stuff" when you just want to get to that place and do the thing. Just let me get there and play the game!

General Discussion / Re: Carriers
« on: October 27, 2019, 03:16:41 AM »
But isn't the point that it used to be a freighter, having lost it's storage space to make room for a fighter factory.

They are the quintessential makeshift warship.

Yep. Every Condor originally started out as a Tarsus. And eventually the conversion became so common Tarsus hulls were converted while still under construction essentially creating a new derived class.
This is why Condor has worst stats than the Tarsus for almost everything, it is sacrificing part of literally every ability in order to carry fighters in the same space that used to be cargo/engines/etc.

It's not supposed to be "good". It's supposed to be "good enough".
And the metric you're using to quantify that is; "can it get fighters into battle?"

Modding / Re: [0.9.1a] Boggled's Terraforming Mod (v0.9)
« on: October 26, 2019, 03:34:14 AM »
Something that might need looking at:

I started with a Tundra world with -1 farming.
I built the mirrors, and it upgraded the world to Terran while giving it +1 farming.
I then removed the mirrors just to see what would happen.
The planet stayed Terran while re-gaining it's previous cold condition. But lost it's farmland condition entirely.
And yet it's now producing 15 food as a size 5 colony.

Looks like the new conditions are being added whenever the mirror status changes, but the old ones are not being removed.
And the farmland is also being removed. (But still 'working'.)

Unrelated feedback/questions:
Possibly consider not changing the planet type, but improve the one that's already there. Having Terran planets potentially everywhere just doesn't "feel" right. (In this setting at least.)

Is everything in cat_barren completely untouched by these buildings?
Ie; Terraforming limited to already habitable planets.
(Fine with this btw.)

Possibly consider adding ability to frozen worlds to build Ismara's Sling.

Possibly consider adding information to the building tooltip when terraforming is stalled.

- Will this support Tart's unknown skies mod?
It would appear not. Possibly due to defing abilities by specific planet type, rather than by planet class.
Not a single US planet I tested with had the ability to build these buildings.

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