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Author Topic: [0.9.1a] TC: Archean Order: Rebalanced Combat/Lore RPG - Update preview 6/24/20  (Read 284191 times)

The PG 13 Priest

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Is there an estimated time as to when the next update might take place?
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Morrokain

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@Albreo

Ah thanks again for the video! I will do my best to learn from it and make any necessary changes - especially since its hard for me to test late game officer scenarios I really appreciate the demonstration of how those battles look.

You also make a good point regarding battle size considerations in the current format. I kind of wish the admiral AI did more wave-like deployments and retreated vessels after a mid-map skirmish is considered "lost" in order to lure the player into the reinforcement wave. Thing is, it might be hard to get that to feel right or not be abusable just like the current reinforcement pattern. It also might be hard to programmatically determine when a battle is "lost" to the AI in a relative-to-space way rather than a DP ratio way (which I assume the current admiral AI uses to determine when the AI ships full retreat).

The thing I was referring to with the upcoming objective changes was that the enemy ratio of DP will better favor them if they have a larger fleet. So in that sense, the AI can better utilize a numbers advantage from the onset of the battle without necessarily needing a large battle size to make the player feel the pressure. The breathing room factor will remain - but consider that small faster wolfpacks will also be encouraged in the new system over pure capital engagements. When putting those two changes together - there is likely to be less realistic breathing room without punishment if that makes sense. That's where I'm basing my assumption, anyway. I'll have to wait and see how it plays out in the end. The theory seems sound but who knows.


Is there an estimated time as to when the next update might take place?

At this point it's hard to say. Conceptually the new system is in place, but finishing the important details of each build and getting the balance to feel a bit better takes exponentially more time than the programming side of things. Work-wise if I put my axe to the grindstone - probably a week. Realistically though? Much harder to say with any real confidence. There are currently 982 variants in the mod. Minus the station modules and a few other ones that don't consider OP, the vast majority of them are going to require changes. I could just slap on vents or hullmods to fix them all quickly, but that seems like a wasted opportunity to make them more meaningful. It's not that they are bad now, per se, but they could be better in some areas - especially carriers. Then, of course, I'll need to add new variants for suggested balance issues and the new wings.

Generally, I balance weapons through stat changes other than OP because changing OP usually means changing a bunch of variants. Since I have to do it anyway for the carrier changes, it's a good time be careful about considering OP.

As an example, when thinking about a single carrier bay, how much of an OP gap does there need to be between wing tiers to make the increased effectiveness of the wing feel like a consideration of the build rather than an easy choice assuming the wing is available? That's one I'm still wrestling with, actually, and the only way to "find out" is going to be to make and test builds along tier lines with multiple carriers and feel it out until it feels right. Math can only get you so far with this sort of thing.

In fact, if anyone has opinions based upon your current experiences to that point, I'm all ears!

*EDIT* Oh hey welcome to the forums!  Didn't catch that this was your first post at first. :)
« Last Edit: September 19, 2020, 04:49:37 PM by Morrokain »
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Albreo

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Quote
Ah thanks again for the video! I will do my best to learn from it and make any necessary changes - especially since its hard for me to test late game officer scenarios I really appreciate the demonstration of how those battles look.

I'm glad to help. If there're any paticular factions you want to see, you can request.

For all the AI change, I would wait for Alex to complete what he wants to implement to negate Capital only fleet. I do disagree with the new skill point system somewhat as there're fewer options and a bit force into only a small pool of initial skill. And the story point, I already imagine myself abusing it already lol.

I can probably help with some variant adjustment if you want but I don't know what factions can and can't use which weapons. Also have zero coding skill.
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capshades

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Registered a forum account just to say thank you for all the time you've put in this mod, between this and Nex's mod you have tripled the content to an already great game.  Also glad you're still adding content and keeping it up to date, thank you!
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basileus

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Generally, I balance weapons through stat changes other than OP because changing OP usually means changing a bunch of variants. Since I have to do it anyway for the carrier changes, it's a good time be careful about considering OP.

As an example, when thinking about a single carrier bay, how much of an OP gap does there need to be between wing tiers to make the increased effectiveness of the wing feel like a consideration of the build rather than an easy choice assuming the wing is available? That's one I'm still wrestling with, actually, and the only way to "find out" is going to be to make and test builds along tier lines with multiple carriers and feel it out until it feels right. Math can only get you so far with this sort of thing.

In fact, if anyone has opinions based upon your current experiences to that point, I'm all ears!

I feel like pure carriers should always use the best wings available.

So the question mostly seems pertinent to battlecarriers.  I'm not really sure.  The calculus is already pretty complex as far as what I do with them.

I did have a thought that might add for some build considerations, though.  A system that could make non-carriers into pseudo-carriers:

Converted Manufactory
Requires: M or L Missile/Universal hardpoint
Mutually Exclusive: Carrier Bays
Cost: 4-7 per rank (depending upon OP gap between wing tiers; should be cheaper with a bigger gap)
Increases missile replenishment time by +50%; decreases fighter replacement time by 50%. (Maybe 40/40 instead?)

That would provide the option to turn certain ships into battlecarriers of sorts, and they would likely be strong candidates to upgrade strikecraft tiers on these specific builds.

A few observations after finishing my Sci-Corps game:

Ogleth is not considered habitable despite being Tundra and having farmland.  Is this deliberate?

The Directorship Training Facility description uses the word "ambiquitous," which appears to be a portmanteau of ambiguous/ambitious and ubiquitous; however, ambitious or ubiquitous would seem to be the exact opposite of the contextual meaning.

The ion torpedo would be better off as a dumbfire missile than a tracking torpedo with very high speed and very low turn rate.

Sci-corps lacked proper interceptors.  The Liberator isn't particularly great in either the interceptor or heavy fighter role.
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Morrokain

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Sorry been busy the last couple days. I read posts but didn't have time to respond to things properly.

Quote
Ah thanks again for the video! I will do my best to learn from it and make any necessary changes - especially since its hard for me to test late game officer scenarios I really appreciate the demonstration of how those battles look.

I'm glad to help. If there're any paticular factions you want to see, you can request.

For all the AI change, I would wait for Alex to complete what he wants to implement to negate Capital only fleet. I do disagree with the new skill point system somewhat as there're fewer options and a bit force into only a small pool of initial skill. And the story point, I already imagine myself abusing it already lol.

I can probably help with some variant adjustment if you want but I don't know what factions can and can't use which weapons. Also have zero coding skill.
Thanks for the offer I appreciate it! It would be tough only because the necessary hullmods aren't available in the current version so making builds with the new constraints in mind is impossible. As far as faction weapons restrictions - I need to make a list or something because it currently resides in my head only haha. :P

We'll have to wait and see how Story Points and the new skill system plays out. I too worry about the abusability of Story Points but I think that can be solved in future balance patches by increasing rarity of the resource if it comes to that. Skills I'm thinking will be good as long as balance is carefully considered. I'm hoping it creates more playstyle opportunity.

Registered a forum account just to say thank you for all the time you've put in this mod, between this and Nex's mod you have tripled the content to an already great game.  Also glad you're still adding content and keeping it up to date, thank you!
Welcome to the forums and thank you very much for the kind words. :)

Hopefully I'll be able to add content well into the future - even if updates take longer sometimes over others. Got to avoid burnout but overall I really enjoy working on this.

@basileus
First off, thanks for the suggestions from your Sci-Corps playthrough. It is very helpful to have perspective of a faction-based playthrough to know which holes to fill and better achieve faction balance. I'll have to think of an interceptor option to give them as the Liberator is less an anti-strike craft wing and more of a shield breaker wing. They got a legendary fighter (Arcangel) in the update so far, but that is too rare and also fits more of a heavy fighter shield breaker/suppression wing than an anti-strike craft wing. I might make a Corps variant of the Sidewinder heavy interceptor to give to them. I'd probably replace its Micro Blaster with a Light Ion Cannon in that variant though to keep it thematic and further move it into more of an air-superiority role at the expense of a little more OP. Maybe add an additional wing member? - though I'd have to see about performance.

Regarding the description I'll change it to "obscure" as I believe that fits the intent of the context. Same thing with Ogleth I'll take a look. I might just need to add the condition. Good catch!

There are some things I'm thinking of along the lines of the converted manufactory idea. Not quite so complex, but more that stacking a couple of hullmods on a cruiser/capital could make it into more of a battlecarrier but it of course requires an OP tax from the mods. Not sure how useful it will be, but I'd like to at least have the option there.

Wing quality: Based upon tests in a 1v1 scenario - wing quality considerations matter. As an example:

Spoiler
---Astral Corps Strike Supercarrier Version 3---
Strike Capabilities: Kintetic - HE - Minor Supression
Replacement Strength: Average
Interceptor Defense: Average
Flares: No
Wing OP: 240
Weapon OP: 128
Flux Stats OP: 82
Hullmod OP: 40
Overall Combat Rating: Good
Test Scenario: Stock Elite Conquest - Result All Lost -  minor enemy damage

vs

---Astral Corps Strike Supercarrier Version 2---
Strike Capabilities: Kintetic - HE - Supression
Replacement Strength: Average
Interceptor Defense: Moderate
Flares: No
Wing OP: 285
Weapon OP: 128
Flux Stats OP: 37
Hullmod OP: 40
Overall Combat Rating: Average
Test Scenario: Stock Elite Conquest - Result All Lost
[close]

The one with less OP in wings and more OP in flux stats can survive to reinforcement much better. That's why it was able to cause damage to the enemy capital compared to the wing optimal one.

Now, in a fleet scenario that kind of breaks down though. You have escorts to provide the defense - so there you are probably right. At least fringe cases exist though, and even still the next updates changes to frigates might make this kind of build more attractive.
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basileus

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Thanks for the offer I appreciate it! It would be tough only because the necessary hullmods aren't available in the current version so making builds with the new constraints in mind is impossible. As far as faction weapons restrictions - I need to make a list or something because it currently resides in my head only haha. :P

Well, you did mention technical debt awhile back, so I could hazard a guess as to your vocation.  Now that Windows has bash, I could clone a Git repo.  I don't know that I want to go down the rabbit hole of setting up Windows development environment and trying to remember Java, but I could edit CSV files.
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Morrokain

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Well, you did mention technical debt awhile back, so I could hazard a guess as to your vocation.  Now that Windows has bash, I could clone a Git repo.  I don't know that I want to go down the rabbit hole of setting up Windows development environment and trying to remember Java, but I could edit CSV files.

Ha guilty. :)

Unfortunately, I was a complete novice when I first started modding and never put the project on Git since I didn't know much about it at the time. I learned a lot of Git functionality and version control at my last job and it's pretty awesome.

When I tried to upload the project after user reports of Dropbox downloading issues, I was shocked at the 100 file upload limit and how long it takes to upload those files in a batch. There is over 4000 files in the project so it's going to take forever to get the project up there lol. After that, though, it won't be so bad (I don't think) to continue editing things especially if I can set up pushing changes to the Git repository directly from my IDE. I have an older community edition of IntelliJ from 2017 so I don't know if I have access to those features or not (I know some microservice things are unavailable in the community edition).

As far as a secondary hosting platform, I plan to use Patreon as well as Dropbox for the next update.

If you are comfortable adding built-in hullmods to ship files, what I could do is host:

1) The new jar which now contains the hullmod code and the hullmod csv
2) The ship data/wing data csv's and the new wing ship/variant files (so you have my current OP/range changes to wings)
3) The new wing sprites
4) The weapon files/weapon data csv for the new fighter-class weapons

This way, you could add the built in hullmod for weapon OP reduction on a carrier you want to test, then add/override the other files to have access to the carrier changes. If you put Starsector in dev mode, you can edit variants from the start screen and play around with making builds and testing out balance. This would also include the currently implemented balance changes for weapons/ships

If anyone is interested in this, I'll host them and people can give feedback as they play around with things. Obviously I'll be making changes in the meantime too, but it would be a bit of a preview of sorts.


Arg, just realized even that wouldn't work because so many things have changed on the technical level. If I gave out the new jar then it would be looking for other files that don't currently exist in the mod - like settings data and related spreadsheets.

Sigh, I should probably just power through build making and the remaining items for the update then do a secondary balance patch later after people have tested it. The main concern is OP gaps like I was speaking about before, and I *think* that feels pretty good right now. The rest of balancing could probably be done through stat/weapon changes to the wings themselves. Hmm, I'll think about that.
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The PG 13 Priest

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@Albreo

Ah thanks again for the video! I will do my best to learn from it and make any necessary changes - especially since its hard for me to test late game officer scenarios I really appreciate the demonstration of how those battles look.

You also make a good point regarding battle size considerations in the current format. I kind of wish the admiral AI did more wave-like deployments and retreated vessels after a mid-map skirmish is considered "lost" in order to lure the player into the reinforcement wave. Thing is, it might be hard to get that to feel right or not be abusable just like the current reinforcement pattern. It also might be hard to programmatically determine when a battle is "lost" to the AI in a relative-to-space way rather than a DP ratio way (which I assume the current admiral AI uses to determine when the AI ships full retreat).

The thing I was referring to with the upcoming objective changes was that the enemy ratio of DP will better favor them if they have a larger fleet. So in that sense, the AI can better utilize a numbers advantage from the onset of the battle without necessarily needing a large battle size to make the player feel the pressure. The breathing room factor will remain - but consider that small faster wolfpacks will also be encouraged in the new system over pure capital engagements. When putting those two changes together - there is likely to be less realistic breathing room without punishment if that makes sense. That's where I'm basing my assumption, anyway. I'll have to wait and see how it plays out in the end. The theory seems sound but who knows.


Is there an estimated time as to when the next update might take place?

At this point it's hard to say. Conceptually the new system is in place, but finishing the important details of each build and getting the balance to feel a bit better takes exponentially more time than the programming side of things. Work-wise if I put my axe to the grindstone - probably a week. Realistically though? Much harder to say with any real confidence. There are currently 982 variants in the mod. Minus the station modules and a few other ones that don't consider OP, the vast majority of them are going to require changes. I could just slap on vents or hullmods to fix them all quickly, but that seems like a wasted opportunity to make them more meaningful. It's not that they are bad now, per se, but they could be better in some areas - especially carriers. Then, of course, I'll need to add new variants for suggested balance issues and the new wings.

Generally, I balance weapons through stat changes other than OP because changing OP usually means changing a bunch of variants. Since I have to do it anyway for the carrier changes, it's a good time be careful about considering OP.

As an example, when thinking about a single carrier bay, how much of an OP gap does there need to be between wing tiers to make the increased effectiveness of the wing feel like a consideration of the build rather than an easy choice assuming the wing is available? That's one I'm still wrestling with, actually, and the only way to "find out" is going to be to make and test builds along tier lines with multiple carriers and feel it out until it feels right. Math can only get you so far with this sort of thing.

In fact, if anyone has opinions based upon your current experiences to that point, I'm all ears!

*EDIT* Oh hey welcome to the forums!  Didn't catch that this was your first post at first. :)


I just want to say that you and to let you know that i and many others greatly appreciate your hard work and look forward to what you put out in the future. I love the mod and have a lot of fun playing with the mod and trying out new or old builds.
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The PG 13 Priest

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@Albreo

Wow thank you for the video! I just watched a bit under half of it and it is very enlightening on endgame battles, etc!  ;D (I'll finish the rest of it later tonight)

Note: I see that you are using the combat speed up mod, and just be aware that it can make the AI a little wonky since things are going so fast and the AI can't take opportunity of certain windows (like shield flickering) as easily when that is active (per Alex iirc). I know that it would be pretty impossible to show all the content you did without it, but just keep that in mind as far as combat results since the game is not really meant to go that fast. For instance, I think some of those battles might have been a bit tougher otherwise - and I think I can visually see certain ships survive longer during some points where the battle seems to be going at a more normal pace. You have a lot of endgame experience though, so if you have played a lot without it on and that is not the case in your opinion let me know.

Re: General feedback from basileus and Albreo:

Thanks! (And always feel free to post what you think I truly don't mind even if I don't always agree with the opinion)

I'll start with the fighter rework suggestions.

I agree that gunships need to be faster and I've made some of them faster already. Thanks for the number I'll try and adjust a few on the slow side and scale the rest up even more.

(And I agree that the AI currently is really, really bad at handling fighters because it bases everything on a niche case that is specific only to vanilla. I've brought this point up to Alex a couple of times on the suggestion board, and iirc he thinks its necessary for ships to be defensive like this. Though I disagree, one point that could have been agreed upon is the aggressiveness of ships given an eliminate command. Since that command is player opted in, he might be more willing to look at that. I guess we will have to wait and see with the next update.)

A lot of the specific suggestions regarding wings have, coincidentally, mostly been looked at. Changes as I remember them:

 - Non-interceptor midline and low tech wings have a significantly more armor and a tiny bit more hull than before in some cases. Gunships, for instance, have like 4X more armor. So they will be tankier, but I'm hesitant to give them shields because A) thats more of a high tech thing and B) overloading the shields prevents the wing from doing its job and can actually make the wing worse unless the shield is very tough. If that doesn't help reduce crew consumption at endgame then I will look into further changes but it might be worth it to wait and see how it plays out.

 - Anti-wing heavy fighters should perform their role a bit better since I buffed their primary weapons so its not quite as much about the anti-fighter missiles. I'm not quite done testing there.

 - The Wasp has been given proximity mines and is now likely going to be a serious threat to other strike craft. Its OP has increased. I may buff the Spectre's defenses a bit and see how that works out. In small scale battles they are really good, but the Spark's shield probably gives it an edge. Their damage is probably fine they likely just die too easily in large battles when lots of projectiles are flying around and its harder to dodge even with phasing.

 - The locus has been changed to an EMP bomber instead of a defensive wing. It is now a Legendary wing. Its PD Burst Beam now acts as a light deterrent to interceptors. I may give it some missiles, but its EMP is surprisingly good at locking down and dealing fairly significant damage when there are a lot of them. Combine them with kinetic strike craft and you have a great utility bomber from what I have seen.

 - I agree with the dps of the Trident and the Goliath. I think making their pulse cannon weapons focus more on ships will help make this feel better, but I may change those weapons' firing patterns to make them more burst-oriented since they have to reload their rockets. I may add a second rocket battery to each of them as well. I haven't tested it enough yet to know for sure if its needed.

 - I added ~8 or so more wings - including the first Legendary wing - the Apocrypha - which is unattached to a faction and can't be found in markets. It has to be found as a Legendary blueprint or, eventually, salvaged from a boss bounty that uses them - which would be an endgame thing. Players are likely to not even see one in a play-through so finding the blueprint should be special.

 - The problem with reducing bullet count with strike craft is they become a lot less accurate and it seriously effects interceptors ability to do their job. I noticed your battle size is pretty high, so reducing it would probably help your CPU.

Weapons:

 - I'll take a look at the suggestions and I have a few ideas for the variety issues with energy weapons. I'm not sure if new weapons will make it into the update or not, but they are on my mind and it could happen.

 - I really do disagree with the analysis of the Terminator Beam. I think it's a great weapon because of the beam speed. The player, specifically, can really abuse shield flickering and sneak in some heavy armor damage. The real issue with the weapon is that the AI isn't always efficient with it. The Burst Siege Beam has the same issue, actually. It's good when it hits its intended defense type.

 - Tachyon Lance already has some changes. Hopefully it will make the AI a bit better with it. From the video, part of the issue it's bad is the jump from the Radiant putting it immediately under fire since the Radiant is trying to attack the enemy ship's engines. Since I'm changing that up already, that might help too on the primary ship that uses it. I honestly think the weapon is pretty good on a Malevolent or - in the next update - the Executor since that ship's flux stats have been buffed and it will likely have some more OP.

I just want to say that your mod is really fun and has given me at least like a couple hundred hours of fun so far. I am excited to see what you put out in the future.
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Morrokain

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@The PG 13 Priest

Thanks I'm glad you are having a lot of fun! Still working on variant adjustments but getting closer to an update day by day!  ;D
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Morrokain

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Well, after applying the bonuses the OP of a lot of stock variants are, much to my surprise, typically within 5-10% of what it was before. That is promising I must be doing something right here! After optimizing (the best I can anyway) several builds for the Onslaught (XIV), Executor, and Paragon and running ~ 50 or so tests in a 1v1 unskilled AI duel scenario - no one capital always wins and more often than not the winner has under 50% hull. 4 times between the Onslaught (XIV) and Executor and 2 times between the Executor and Paragon they killed each other simultaneously with their final salvos haha. That was funny to watch. The only matchup that needs a bit of work is the Executor vs Onslaught (XIV). The Onslaught can win, but there were too many times that the Executor had over 60% hull after the fight and I want it to be a bit lower so the fight is closer. I'm doing this to create a baseline for high armor/high shields/midline battlecarrier comparisons to create a spectrum for balancing the rest of the builds. Not every variant is equal to the others, either, with some being dedicated anti-armor (the Strike Executor practically deletes and Onslaught but is garbage against a Paragon) so experiences in the campaign will still vary and depend upon fleet composition elements.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Anyway, now down to business.

I'm adding a few new weapons alongside the new wings in order to fill in a few more roles (mostly for energy weapons) but I also wanted to add some Remnant-only weapons - including a legendary. I wanted to post this so that if anyone has any requests on the theme/functionality of these weapons they can post their ideas here. :)

If not, I'll come up with them myself no worries. (I'm also obviously going to be adding even more once I get access to these new effects. I'm very excited to delve more deeply into those at a later date!)
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Albreo

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That's ok I guess. I wouldn't want the stock variants to be the best possible loadout. That would take the fun out of players to experiment with mix & match themself. And don't forget to include all of them as test ships, I'm lacking target practice.

Anyway, now down to business.

I'm adding a few new weapons alongside the new wings in order to fill in a few more roles (mostly for energy weapons) but I also wanted to add some Remnant-only weapons - including a legendary. I wanted to post this so that if anyone has any requests on the theme/functionality of these weapons they can post their ideas here. :)

If not, I'll come up with them myself no worries. (I'm also obviously going to be adding even more once I get access to these new effects. I'm very excited to delve more deeply into those at a later date!)

Here are some options.

From other mods
- Projectile weapon with soft homing capability.
- Beam weapon with secondary delay explosion.
- Weapon effectiveness scales with flux levels.

- Large long range anti-matter projectile weapon.
- Slow moving projectile with a huge hitbox.
- Tractor beam weapon.

Crazy stuff
- One-hit-kill beam weapon with super long wind up time and visible tracer during charge up, anchoring the ship, fixed mount build in weapon, pierce through ships, infinite range, non dropable. Obviously requires a new ship.
- Nanite swarm missile launcher. Generate cloud of persistent EMP aoe damage at hit location.
- Phase bomb teleporter in missile mount.
- Weapon that can damage phasing ship.
- Jamming crystal shard missile that rips fighter recovery rate.
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Morrokain

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I don't think it would even be possible to optimize all the stock variants - there are just too many and the number is growing lol. And part of the reason I'm adding more is to more explicitly demonstrate roles such as Strike, Assault, Fire Support, etc to the player. In that sense, there are definitely some variants that are worse than others and will likely be worse than player builds. That is intentional in order to create variance (I personally roleplay it as officer/commander ability variance). That is on top of the variance that comes with any particular fight between two otherwise equally matched variants. If the Elite Executor or the Strike Paragon overloads, for instance, the battle is pretty much over for the one who did.

I've also learned that I need to be very, very careful about some hullmod synergies. I made Front Shield Emitter unequip-able with Concentrated Shield Emitter OR Stabilized Shields and I made Concentrated Shield Emitter unequip-able with Front Shield Emitter OR Hardened Shields. This was after I stacked the later combo on a flux-free Paragon and it became an unstoppable deity of death on the battlefield...

In general flux free assault weapons are a mod feature, but I'm starting to come around to the idea that large weapons either need to generate some flux or have significant damage/range drawbacks to not make capital ships too strong. It doesn't seem to be as big an issue on ships smaller than capitals though maybe I just haven't tested it enough. However I noticed that simply replacing the Onslaught's Devastator for a Mark IX made it perform considerably better because it could always fire an armor breaking weapon alongside its railguns.

Both the Mark IX and the Razor Tri-Beam have had a healthy whack with the nerf bat as a result. I am also adding minor flux costs to longer ranged assault weapons like the Excaliber Cannon and Photon Cannon line of weapons like I did with the Railgun line of weapons.

Finally, to further solidify the idea of designations as a balancing mechanism, I've been tossing around the idea of giving destroyers the same benefits that frigates get against missiles, fighters and the same speed mechanics. I felt that this really gave frigates new life in the later stages of the game and I think it could help destroyers too. In that same vein of thinking, I will probably reduce the 0-flux speed boost of capitals to 40 down from 80. Why? To prevent non-flux builds from maintaining the speed to chase down and eliminate targets far too quickly. The 0-flux Paragon took down three Eagles without its flux getting above the threshold to loose its boost because the Eagles could not leverage their positioning to pressure the unshielded portion that is supposed to be the weakness of Concentrated Shield Emitter.
-------------------------------------------------------------

Those weapons sound really cool! They certainly sound unique and interesting, but they also probably come with a fair amount of custom script work that I'm probably not quite ready to dedicate the time to learning right now - well, at least for this update.

I'm going to have to keep things relatively simple right now due to time constraints. So, for example, I can't remember if it was you or basileus who commented on the lack of a true armor breaking energy weapon. That is one of the gaps that I intend to tackle. The Phase Beam/Atronarch Beam/Terminator Beam already do this very well due to duration changes and a dps buff to the Terminator Beam specifically, but I'd like to make a projectile-based weapon an option as well.

Another gap would be the Fire Support role for energy weapons. There currently are such weapons when combining beams with Advanced Optics, but it would be nice to have more lower tier projectile siege weapons outside of the Apocalypse Cannon - which is rare and expensive.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2020, 02:45:24 PM by Morrokain »
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Albreo

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I've also learned that I need to be very, very careful about some hullmod synergies. I made Front Shield Emitter unequip-able with Concentrated Shield Emitter OR Stabilized Shields and I made Concentrated Shield Emitter unequip-able with Front Shield Emitter OR Hardened Shields. This was after I stacked the later combo on a flux-free Paragon and it became an unstoppable deity of death on the battlefield...

Yes, that combo waited so long to be nerfed.

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In general flux free assault weapons are a mod feature, but I'm starting to come around to the idea that large weapons either need to generate some flux or have significant damage/range drawbacks to not make capital ships too strong. It doesn't seem to be as big an issue on ships smaller than capitals though maybe I just haven't tested it enough. However I noticed that simply replacing the Onslaught's Devastator for a Mark IX made it perform considerably better because it could always fire an armor breaking weapon alongside its railguns.
Both the Mark IX and the Razor Tri-Beam have had a healthy whack with the nerf bat as a result. I am also adding minor flux costs to longer ranged assault weapons like the Excaliber Cannon and Photon Cannon line of weapons like I did with the Railgun line of weapons.

Yep, flux free is always superior. That's why I'm very skeptical about it. I wouldn't mind flux free large weapons but their DPS can't be on par with the one that generates flux.

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Finally, to further solidify the idea of designations as a balancing mechanism, I've been tossing around the idea of giving destroyers the same benefits that frigates get against missiles, fighters and the same speed mechanics. I felt that this really gave frigates new life in the later stages of the game and I think it could help destroyers too. In that same vein of thinking, I will probably reduce the 0-flux speed boost of capitals to 40 down from 80. Why? To prevent non-flux builds from maintaining the speed to chase down and eliminate targets far too quickly. The 0-flux Paragon took down three Eagles without its flux getting above the threshold to loose its boost because the Eagles could not leverage their positioning to pressure the unshielded portion that is supposed to be the weakness of Concentrated Shield Emitter.

I also want you to nerf the Helmsmanship zero flux speed boost threshold to 25% from 34%

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I'm going to have to keep things relatively simple right now due to time constraints. So, for example, I can't remember if it was you or basileus who commented on the lack of a true armor breaking energy weapon. That is one of the gaps that I intend to tackle. The Phase Beam/Atronarch Beam/Terminator Beam already do this very well due to duration changes and a dps buff to the Terminator Beam specifically, but I'd like to make a projectile-based weapon an option as well.

That's me, I guess, but I want one for medium mount slot more. Also for the Terminator Beam, can it be tweak some how for AI to not waste it on the shield when the only large weapon it has is Terminator Beam. I don't think the Onslaught waste it too much, only occasionally. Mostly it was used as it intends purpose.

The beam point defense weapons also defeat the fighter buff this mod provides a bit, not sure how can it be deal with. It's already expensive to field in.
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