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Author Topic: Remove player's piloted-ship skills, replace them with officer's skills.  (Read 3220 times)
fededevi
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« on: May 12, 2017, 12:20:28 PM »

My suggestion is to remove all player's piloted-ship  skills and let the officers replace them. The player tree should have only fleet-wide/global skills. What I mean is that the ship controlled by the player should have an officer like all the others, and the officer will provide the ship-specific skills.

Why (I think) is this good?

- You will be able to switch from different types of ships without wasting all the combat specific skills (missile/shields/armor/fighters). E.G. If you have Missile Specialization you do not want to pilot a ship without missiles.

- The player will not have to pilot a sub-par ship if it choose to specialize into industrial tree. The fleet will be weaker overall but it is not specifically the player's piloted ship that will be weak.

- Switching player's ships in combat or before combat will be painless since the ships retains the skills of the officer (including max CR).

- The current system "forces" the player to use only a subset of the available ships that are optimal based on the selected combat skills which you cannot change.

-The skill system will be easier to understand and straightforward: Player-> Fleet wide skills, Officer -> Ship combat skills.

-The player ship will not be potentially stronger  than AI ships because they will share the same combat skill "tree" and points.


Why is this bad?
Let me know.

Oh yeah... also, let me choose the officer skills freely.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2017, 03:41:08 PM by fededevi » Logged
Solinarius
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« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2017, 12:57:27 PM »

Seems like pretty a solid idea! Could make skills even easier to balance, and we, as captains, can choose our first officers. Best of all, when the ship goes to autopilot, we could have worked something out that compliments our first officer's personality.
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Embolism
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« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2017, 01:21:58 PM »

Already been suggested, and Alex has explained the purpose of player pilot skills (alternate playstyles, small, lean and efficient fleets vs large fleets). Having things work off the same system (officer and player skills) also feels more cohesive.

The current system is fine, it's only numbers that are imbalanced. Giving piloted skills level 3 fleet-wide effects for example can make them more enticing for players without unnecessarily buffing officers. In some ways this is essentially making all player skills fleet-wide, but without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2017, 01:26:44 PM by Embolism » Logged
fededevi
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« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2017, 03:29:31 PM »

[...]

Did not notice that thread but my suggestion is actually much simpler than what have been suggested there.

My suggestion is to completely remove player ship-skills and replace them with an officer skill-set (Which is pretty much the same anyway (or exactly the same??)). It is not like the officers will become more powerful or important than before, you just need one more for your ship.

While at first sight it may seem like this is like "throwing the baby out with the bathwater" (I had to search what it means on wikipedia Cheesy) I do not think it is because you will still have access to the same skillset as before, but with separated progression and the ability to change part of it.

Of course total/maximum skill points of the player should be reduced based on how many skills are removed/replaced.

A couple of questions:

Why are you saying that officers will be buffed? Officers would stay the same as they are now.

Why should this prevent you from specializing the fleet? I know this will prevent player ship from becoming stronger than the AI and I personally think this is a good thing but I can see why someone thinks it is not. Personally I think the AI is easy enought to beat as it is without the need of adding buffs to the player ship only.



Sorry for my english.  Roll Eyes

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Wyvern
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2017, 03:56:26 PM »

As noted, I've suggested this before.

The current system is fine, it's only numbers that are imbalanced. Giving piloted skills level 3 fleet-wide effects for example can make them more enticing for players without unnecessarily buffing officers. In some ways this is essentially making all player skills fleet-wide, but without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.
I don't think that's a good idea - you'd end up with combat skills also promoting having a large fleet to leverage those fleet-wide bonuses as much as possible, and that's pretty much exactly the opposite of what we want.

This is true, but presumably at some point there'll be more of a reason to have a more compact but more powerful pound-for-pound fleet. That's already true to some extent - fuel and logistical costs, deployment costs, etc - so combat skills, while technically weaker in terms of total fleet power, do make you more efficient.
Presumably.  At some point.  And even if or when that happens, you'll still get a much stronger fleet by picking up another six officers versus taking combat skills yourself; if sensor profile is an issue, stick them on phase ships; if supply or fuel usage is an issue, add a freighter or tanker.

If the intended goal is to make a more compact fleet plausible, then what needs to happen is that the combat skills available to the player (and, presumably, to enemy fleet flagships) need to be significantly more potent than those available to officers.

And even if we did make that change, it still doesn't fix some of the other issues this idea addresses, like how boring it is to deploy only AI-controlled ships when you're trying to efficiently deal with a small enemy fleet & get some XP on your officers.
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Wyvern is 100% correct about the math.
Morbo513
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« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2017, 04:08:54 PM »

like how boring it is to deploy only AI-controlled ships when you're trying to efficiently deal with a small enemy fleet & get some XP on your officers.
Am I the only person who's never done this? If there's a fight, I'z gotsta be innit
I presume with the OP's suggestion, if the ship you're piloting has has an officer, both you and they will gain experience. That officer would essentially lend you their combat skills, at the expense of overlapping a player-piloted ship with an officer-piloted one. It sounds reasonable to me.

Buffing the player's combat skills wouldn't be unwelcome, but unless they were ridiculously powerful I still don't think I'd take them over the fleetwide bonuses which overall benefit you a lot more.
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Megas
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« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2017, 05:29:44 PM »

Before 0.8, the combination of powerful skills, asymmetric use of Augmented Engines and ITU (not many stock ships used either), AI's overreliance on shields for defense, and more reckless AI made soloing easier and AI wingmen too vulnerable to mistakes.

Now, taking all the personal skills, you still end up weaker than an unskilled clunker fleet.  Unless I want to build a battlestation killer Paragon (which will be patched), I prefer to take skills that either make my whole fleet better or give major quality-of-life features (like Navigation).

Also, the best pilot-only skills are in Leadership (carrier skills) or Technology (Gunnery Implants and Power Grid Modulation), which have fleetwide skills too, unlike Combat.  (That said, I really want Helmsmanship skills to feel good.)

Take Combat Endurance.  It would be more efficient to get more officers (if it is a choice between either and cannot afford both) and changing into officer's ship.  Only thing that might be annoying is the constant switch, despite stronger fleet overall.

Unless Combat skills get much better, the OP's suggestion makes perfect sense.  I was thinking something similar, and the OP beat me to it!
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Gothars
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« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2017, 05:47:35 PM »

If the combat aptitude is too weak, just buff it a bit. Other aptitudes arguable have some skills that are (designed to be) better than the rest. Leadership has Fighter Doctrine and Officer Management, Technology has Loadout Design and Navigation. Combat has no such stars (just a flop in form of Advanced Countermeasures).
It just needs one or two very good skills that are not attainable for officers, and all is good.

A big part of the power of the combat aptitude should come from the players direct piloting, not from raw numbers. These two things can amplify each other, after all.
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FooF
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« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2017, 06:20:06 PM »

At the end of the day, all this idea really does is force about half of the skill points into player-only combat skills. You'd have to reduce the global skill points by half to accommodate the change, which then limits what a "global" player is able to do.

I don't think it's a bad idea but it drastically increases the rate of progression of the player and unnecessarily distinguishes between player and global skills. The only meaningful decisions to be made are the order in which you get skills, not whether or not you will get them. I think that's a step backwards for longevity.

I'm currently playing a clunker fleet setup that has a grand-total of 4 points in player-only skills. I don't feel my flagship is gimped in the slightest. It would be *nice* to have a stronger flagship but I valued global skills more this time and I can live with that decision. On other playthroughs, I've gone heavily into combat and feel the strength of it.

I think this is a "have your cake and eat it too" type idea. Having more skill points or raising the level cap would do essentially the same thing.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2017, 06:21:43 PM by FooF » Logged
Wyvern
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« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2017, 07:30:13 PM »

I think this is a "have your cake and eat it too" type idea. Having more skill points or raising the level cap would do essentially the same thing.
Having more skill points would just encourage the player to finish out the rest of the non-per-ship skills, further decreasing viable player choice.

You'd have to reduce the global skill points by half to accommodate the change, which then limits what a "global" player is able to do.
Absolutely correct; making this change without adjusting the skill points available to a max level player would be a bad idea.  (Although cutting skill points in half might be overkill. But they'd definitely need to be cut. And some adjustments to the leveling curves might also be a good idea.)

At the moment, a player can acquire all but four of the fleet-wide skills; if we ignore salvaging and surveying skills (which, if we're trying to be efficient, we probably should), then you can get all but two.

If you ignore the industry aptitude entirely (also not unreasonable - the stuff in there is nice, but once you're at end-game and money is no longer a problem, there's no particular reason to run with D-mod ships at all), then you can get all of the other fleet-wide skills with nine points left over for per-ship (or industry) skills.

In other words, if you aren't inclined to deliberately gimp yourself by overspending on either combat skills or skills that only help in the early game, then we're already in the situation where "the only meaningful decisions to be made are the order in which you get skills".  Which is, as you say, not a good place to be.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2017, 07:33:45 PM by Wyvern » Logged

Wyvern is 100% correct about the math.
Schwartz
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« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2017, 08:26:15 PM »

If the combat aptitude is too weak, just buff it a bit.

Even though we just said good riddance to an overpowered combat tree, yep. A slight buff is going to hurt way less than removing the choice between ship and fleet skills for the player.

I still don't think it needs a buff just yet.
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FooF
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« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2017, 08:38:46 PM »

Having more skill points would just encourage the player to finish out the rest of the non-per-ship skills, further decreasing viable player choice.

Agreed on all points but this one. I think there is point of diminishing returns with the global skills. The difference between Level 2 and 3 Coordinated Maneuvers, Electronic Warfare, Officer Management, and maybe one or two more isn't all that significant compared to the bonuses you get from going from Level 2 to 3 in some of the Combat skills. At a certain point, the intra-competitiveness of certain skills win out over others. +5% speed for the fleet or 0-flux Speed Boost? 5% less enemy range or +15% range for my ship? Etc.

Hypothetically, if I had another 5 skill points to spend and I had already nearly maxed out the global stuff, a lot of those combat skills would "win out" even if I was going for fleet stuff.
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fededevi
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« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2017, 08:47:32 PM »

While I agree with almost everything that has been written I think a crucial point have been ignored which is that piloting skills will force the player to always use the same ships.

For example if you get strike commander and wing commander you will forced to pilot only carriers to not waste your 6 (+ aptitudes) skill points, or at least I do.
Or, in anorther way, I will never get those 2 skills because I don't want to be forced to always use a carrier.

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TaLaR
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« Reply #13 on: May 12, 2017, 08:54:01 PM »

+5% speed for the fleet or 0-flux Speed Boost?

This one is mostly false choice. Only carriers and flux-positive beamboats can make effective use of it due to 1% flux limit. If you are not specced for carrier, it's rather useless.

For example if you get strike commander and wing commander you will forced to pilot only carriers to not waste your 6 (+ aptitudes) skill points, or at least I do.
Or, in anorther way, I will never get those 2 skills because I don't want to be forced to always use a carrier.

Yep, that's why I never pilot a Carrier in campaign.
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Megas
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« Reply #14 on: May 12, 2017, 11:54:03 PM »

For the player, there are a few pilot-only carrier skills that are nice at one point even for casual carrier use (such as using Legion or Astral as possible flagship during endgame).  One skill reduces crew causalities - nice for Talon spam (or at least less need for Recovery Shuttles hullmod).  Another one speeds up fighters by 25%.  Great for bombers, that is almost like a +25% to damage (because they take less time moving).
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