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News: New blog post: Pirate Bases, Raids, and Objectives (06/12/18); In-dev patch notes for Starsector 0.9a (06/01/18);Starsector 0.8.1a is out!
 
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Author Topic: Pirate Bases, Raids, and Objectives  (Read 4772 times)
Psycho Society
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« Reply #45 on: June 13, 2018, 11:35:32 PM »

This is incredible. Seriously, this last blog post shows a quantum leap to map-scale progressive gameplay that accelerates past any expectations I had. Astounding. You're almost there!
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Dostya
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« Reply #46 on: June 14, 2018, 12:10:01 AM »

If there's a random, active Domain era communications relay in an unclaimed, uninhabited system, can it be salvaged and brought somewhere more useful if you've got plenty of cargo space? Given that vague equivalents of these satellites can apparently be created with some effort, carefully disconnecting the guts and reassembling them in another location seems vaguely reasonable. I don't recall there being that many when I've laughed off the inhabited parts of the sector and gone out to explore the whole rim a few times. The inactive ones are somewhat more common, but, well, they're not very useful.
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Ranakastrasz
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« Reply #47 on: June 14, 2018, 06:30:40 AM »

I personally feel that Pirates (And independents, and Traders, and Smugglers, and so on) should be something of an Edge-case of mechanics.
Aside from, Pirates shouldn't really be fully allied with each other, They don't exactly have a normal economy, are unlikely to own planets, and some other stuff.

I think mechanics should be written for the main factions and secondary factions first, and then, exceptions and new rules should be made for the weird factions.
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Sarissofoi
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« Reply #48 on: June 14, 2018, 06:49:35 AM »

Some pirate subfactions would make sense as they not really unified. Having subfaction system that centers around warlords or pirate lords that appear and cause mayhem would be nice.
About pirate rep. What about system that give player bonus rep when fighting off challenging him pirates(as he prove to be hard nut to crack) and neg rep for harrasing smugglers and guys who run? Positive rep to the point when most pirates would ignore player fleet (maybe outside revenge and hunter fleets).

Question to Alex.
Is it will be possible (and easy) to modify max amount of pirate starbases or make another faction use similar mechanics?
I kind of entertain idea of having sector fall into total chaos with plenty of aider starbases and multiple raiding factions.

Also can we get some more custom options on generating new sector?
Like having some setups like different number of core systems, pirate activity, other stuff. Etc?

Also can these starbases system can be used for mayor factions but not for raiding but for staging exploration, salvage, antipiracy or colonozation mission?

Overall really nice blog and cant really wait for new update to hit.
God speed.
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Ceosad
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« Reply #49 on: June 14, 2018, 11:20:23 AM »

It would make sense if the pirate reputation was set permanently to hostile with the player. However, the current planets and stations held by the pirates in the core systems would be slightly weirder in that case. If the player plays as a pirate and loots trade fleets etc., it should be reasonably safe to visit those markets which are owned by pirates (and supposedly ruled by smugglers and other lawless folks).

It would be more realistic if there was some kind of a "safe-zone" around the pirate core markets where the pirate fleets would avoid attacking the player. Perhaps the safe area around a pirate market would simulate a planet's sensor radius. Smugglers ruling a planet would not like to see a potential customer dead on their doorstep. Perhaps the violating party (the player) that attacked other pirates near a pirate market would be penalized by being forbidden to dock with the market for a few months. This system could simulate pirate laws or customs, and make the pirates to feel like real pirates. In comparison, real life Buccaneers had quite complex laws of their own.

I do not know if this would improve the gameplay in a meaningful way. Just throwing some thoughts around. Smiley
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Igncom1
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« Reply #50 on: June 14, 2018, 11:24:19 AM »

I've made friends with the Luddic Path before but as I understand it with the pirates, it's a little tricky.

It's not like they wouldn't still raid your faction even if some powerful pirate lords like you, well unless there are some concessions you can make to bring the raiders 'in house.'

Even still I believe you can trade at pirate ports from the game go, it just that pirate fleets still try to devour you if they think they can.
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Trylobot
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« Reply #51 on: June 14, 2018, 02:56:33 PM »

K, this looks *** awesome Alex.
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AspirantEmperor
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« Reply #52 on: June 14, 2018, 03:21:29 PM »

Ohmygod I can't wait for this update. It's like, "Do you want colonies?"

And I'm like, "Um, yes?"

And it's like, "Great! Here's colonies. And also everything else too."

There are just a couple things I'm concerned about. First, if we're no where near an active relay (like in the core worlds) do we still get warned about a raid coming to our colony? I've gone exploring the outer systems for more than a cycle at a time, and if I had a colony, it would really suck to come back to find it devastated. Even if you're not in communication range, maybe your colony could send a messenger to you. After all, it's important to them that you know they need help. And I could imagine a single mudskipper(D) or the like, with basically no remaining supplies or fuel (so the player can't abuse it, even if they could know it was coming) showing up to meet you (on the route that you supposedly told your colony about before you left) to tell you the dire news. And I would understand this being an exception to the "simulate every fleet" philosophy; the mudskipper could spawn just beyond your sensor range and come straight to you (presumably joining your fleet when it gets there). Whatever the case, I wouldn't enjoy having this constant nagging feeling that I had to check in with the core worlds to know my colony wasn't being torn apart all the time.

And second, while the "pirate activity" condition is a nice way to push the player into combat and to get the player involved in the development of his/her colony early on, it will eventually outlive its usefulness. For example, lets say I have a "colony" (industrial superpower world) where POP = MAX and STATION = BIGGEST, with factory lines of patrols full of onslaughts and paragons under a super-experienced, super-coordinated planetary defense command. It would suck to have to live with a near-permanent "pirate activity" condition just because I couldn't be bothered any more with destroying pirate outposts personally. Surely some bright spark in the planetary defense command would come up with the idea to send one or two measly fleets of paragons to the neighboring system to deal with those pirates. I'm even ok with them not doing that if the pirates eventually decide we're just too big of a target to pester; as long as there is some point (even one well after I can deal with tier 5 pirate bases myself) that I don't have to get personally involved in something that's just trivial for me if I want my colony to function well.

Oh, and about the pirates-are-always-the-enemies thing. There are other entities on the edges of civilized space that may take an interest in your colony. Perhaps some [REDACTED] detachments are more mobile than first thought. I can really picture this being one of the risks in overusing AI. Ex. "Your colony has found an unaccounted-for program operating on it's communication system, which seems to have been transmitting data to the ([REDACTED] - controlled) system. The program has been deleted and the transmission cut, but officials in the military are advising precautions." After all, an AI taken from the [REDACTED] (as many advanced ones are) may wish to return.

Though overall it's looking really good. I can't wait to play it.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2018, 04:52:12 PM by AspirantEmperor » Logged
Sutopia
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« Reply #53 on: June 15, 2018, 12:28:09 AM »

And second, while the "pirate activity" condition is a nice way to push the player into combat and to get the player involved in the development of his/her colony early on, it will eventually outlive its usefulness. For example, lets say I have a "colony" (industrial superpower world) where POP = MAX and STATION = BIGGEST, with factory lines of patrols full of onslaughts and paragons under a super-experienced, super-coordinated planetary defense command. It would suck to have to live with a near-permanent "pirate activity" condition just because I couldn't be bothered any more with destroying pirate outposts personally. Surely some bright spark in the planetary defense command would come up with the idea to send one or two measly fleets of paragons to the neighboring system to deal with those pirates. I'm even ok with them not doing that if the pirates eventually decide we're just too big of a target to pester; as long as there is some point (even one well after I can deal with tier 5 pirate bases myself) that I don't have to get personally involved in something that's just trivial for me if I want my colony to function well.

I think most of your concerns have been handled or under development already

Quote
A raid can be disrupted with a spoiling attack while it’s still assembling, or handled once it reaches the system it’s targeting.  The latter can involve a defensive battle, where the player fights on the same side as their orbital stations and patrols. Strong-enough system defenses can also handle smaller raids without the player having to be involved. Presumably, the strength of the raid would be communicated to the player, so they know whether it’s something they have to deal with personally or not. Again, this is a bit where I’m still working through some details, and pirate bases and raids would ideally be one of several sources of trouble, and not the only one.

I assume once your colony is strong enough you'll be informed frequently "we're getting raided" and a few moments later "well they got poped by our patrols AGAIN".

Also it might be a good concept for pirate base/raid size not very RNGed:
When a colony is small there is not much profit in there so there are little pirate activity around.
As colony grows bigger, pirates are more willing to raid and will try to form greater raiding fleet.
If a raid went successful, the pirates will grow and form stronger force next time, maybe even upgrading their station.
Contrarily, if they got fended off often, they'll go extreme: minor pirate activity most of the time since they generally know it's too strong to raid; major assault from time to time when they think they finally got the force to do it.
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AspirantEmperor
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« Reply #54 on: June 15, 2018, 04:00:19 AM »

@Sutopia Thanks, but that quote is about pirate raids. I was asking about the "pirate activity" market condition, which is a different thing.
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Vulpes
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« Reply #55 on: June 15, 2018, 04:46:37 AM »

Will the player eventually be able to remotely orchestrate their fleets and destroy a pirate outpost?  It'd make more sense than having to do everything personally, and the player still has to prioritise what their limited fleets are doing.


"But, you say, why not just build them next to the base, and have everything be defended at the same time? "

Not to be that guy, but why not just build defences around the objectives too?  Tongue
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namp007
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« Reply #56 on: June 15, 2018, 12:52:11 PM »

Thanks again for the wonderful blog post!

It leaves me with a lot of questions, but answers to those questions would only give me more questions to ask  Wink

Can't wait for this update to become available, but seeing this subset of features tells me it'll still take quite a lot of time/work.
Happy to continue the wait though, as I do like how polished/balanced it feels! Cheesy
Every update it feels like there's something I'll dislike about the game (e.g. the whole CR-mechanic before) but in the end, it is a necessary evil to balance the game.
And afterwards, I'll agree that it's a good addition so I fully trust every game-design designed you make to be a great one Smiley

P.S. Is it just me or are you increasing feature-scope per release because we're running out of release versions before 1.0? Tongue

Anyway keep up the good work, these features are as enticing as ever!
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Alex
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« Reply #57 on: June 15, 2018, 02:29:33 PM »

This is incredible. Seriously, this last blog post shows a quantum leap to map-scale progressive gameplay that accelerates past any expectations I had. Astounding. You're almost there!

Thank you! Hope it delivers on the expectations Smiley

If there's a random, active Domain era communications relay in an unclaimed, uninhabited system, can it be salvaged and brought somewhere more useful if you've got plenty of cargo space? Given that vague equivalents of these satellites can apparently be created with some effort, carefully disconnecting the guts and reassembling them in another location seems vaguely reasonable. I don't recall there being that many when I've laughed off the inhabited parts of the sector and gone out to explore the whole rim a few times. The inactive ones are somewhat more common, but, well, they're not very useful.

It can't be salvaged like that, no, but any "inactive" comm relays etc are re-activated when you take control of them.


I think mechanics should be written for the main factions and secondary factions first, and then, exceptions and new rules should be made for the weird factions.

Right... so, say, hardcoding their standing with the player to -50 would be along those lines Smiley

Is it will be possible (and easy) to modify max amount of pirate starbases or make another faction use similar mechanics?
I kind of entertain idea of having sector fall into total chaos with plenty of aider starbases and multiple raiding factions.

The first should be easy (settings.json change), the second is very doable but a bit more involved.

Also can we get some more custom options on generating new sector?
Like having some setups like different number of core systems, pirate activity, other stuff. Etc?

I have some very specific ideas for what I'd like to do re: new game settings (and it probably won't make it into 0.9), but that's all I'll say about that Lips sealed

Also can these starbases system can be used for mayor factions but not for raiding but for staging exploration, salvage, antipiracy or colonozation mission?

By mods, right? Then yes. If you mean in vanilla, then I'm not planning on doing that; the pirate bases have a specific role to play as far as player colonizing; the other stuff, while mechanically similar, wouldn't play the same role and I don't really see a reason to delve into it. One of those things where you could do a million different things, you know? Just trying to keep everything cohesive the best I can.

Overall really nice blog and cant really wait for new update to hit.
God speed.

Thank you!


It would be more realistic if there was some kind of a "safe-zone" around the pirate core markets where the pirate fleets would avoid attacking the player.

Quick note: if you turn your transponder off, pirates more or less ignore you unless you get super close.

K, this looks *** awesome Alex.

Cheesy Thank you!

There are just a couple things I'm concerned about. First, if we're no where near an active relay (like in the core worlds) do we still get warned about a raid coming to our colony? I've gone exploring the outer systems for more than a cycle at a time, and if I had a colony, it would really suck to come back to find it devastated. Even if you're not in communication range, maybe your colony could send a messenger to you. After all, it's important to them that you know they need help. And I could imagine a single mudskipper(D) or the like, with basically no remaining supplies or fuel (so the player can't abuse it, even if they could know it was coming) showing up to meet you (on the route that you supposedly told your colony about before you left) to tell you the dire news. And I would understand this being an exception to the "simulate every fleet" philosophy; the mudskipper could spawn just beyond your sensor range and come straight to you (presumably joining your fleet when it gets there). Whatever the case, I wouldn't enjoy having this constant nagging feeling that I had to check in with the core worlds to know my colony wasn't being torn apart all the time.

Yep, I'd imagine you'd have to find out regardless of comm relay access. The Mudskipper is a nice touch, I admit, though you might just have to imagine it being there Smiley


And second, while the "pirate activity" condition is a nice way to push the player into combat and to get the player involved in the development of his/her colony early on, it will eventually outlive its usefulness. For example, lets say I have a "colony" (industrial superpower world) where POP = MAX and STATION = BIGGEST, with factory lines of patrols full of onslaughts and paragons under a super-experienced, super-coordinated planetary defense command. It would suck to have to live with a near-permanent "pirate activity" condition just because I couldn't be bothered any more with destroying pirate outposts personally. Surely some bright spark in the planetary defense command would come up with the idea to send one or two measly fleets of paragons to the neighboring system to deal with those pirates. I'm even ok with them not doing that if the pirates eventually decide we're just too big of a target to pester; as long as there is some point (even one well after I can deal with tier 5 pirate bases myself) that I don't have to get personally involved in something that's just trivial for me if I want my colony to function well.

I mean, that's the theory of it, but somehow crime and corruption manage to prosper in many circumstances wher they *could* be crushed. I do see your point, though - but, well, if you're that far advanced, it could simply become the cost of doing business for you. Sure, there's pirate activity, but that's just what a large colony outside the core has to deal with. Maybe it'd be somewhere where the player clears it out if the penalty gets too large, maybe it's something they can ignore, or maybe it IS something they can invest credits into dealing with remotely. Will just have to see!


Oh, and about the pirates-are-always-the-enemies thing. There are other entities on the edges of civilized space that may take an interest in your colony. Perhaps some [REDACTED] detachments are more mobile than first thought. I can really picture this being one of the risks in overusing AI. Ex. "Your colony has found an unaccounted-for program operating on it's communication system, which seems to have been transmitting data to the ([REDACTED] - controlled) system. The program has been deleted and the transmission cut, but officials in the military are advising precautions." After all, an AI taken from the [REDACTED] (as many advanced ones are) may wish to return.

Yeah, for sure, there are other options for sources of trouble. It's just that if you can take pirates out of that equation, it gets weird, and it also gets a bit bug-prone trying to remember to account for the "oh, right, pirates might not be hostile" possibility everywhere.


Also it might be a good concept for pirate base/raid size not very RNGed:
When a colony is small there is not much profit in there so there are little pirate activity around.
As colony grows bigger, pirates are more willing to raid and will try to form greater raiding fleet.

Yeah, that's very much the idea. This is one of those cases where the scaling of the threat to the extent of the player's holdings (and thus, indirectly, power) makes perfect sense.


Will the player eventually be able to remotely orchestrate their fleets and destroy a pirate outpost?  It'd make more sense than having to do everything personally, and the player still has to prioritise what their limited fleets are doing.

Mmmmaybe? Not prepared to confirm or deny etc etc etc, and in any case not for 0.9.


Not to be that guy, but why not just build defences around the objectives too?  Tongue

Costs? I mean, they probably barely scraped the resources to build one station together; building 3 more to defend some relays seems extremely uneconomical.


Thanks again for the wonderful blog post!

It leaves me with a lot of questions, but answers to those questions would only give me more questions to ask  Wink

Can't wait for this update to become available, but seeing this subset of features tells me it'll still take quite a lot of time/work.
Happy to continue the wait though, as I do like how polished/balanced it feels! Cheesy
Every update it feels like there's something I'll dislike about the game (e.g. the whole CR-mechanic before) but in the end, it is a necessary evil to balance the game.
And afterwards, I'll agree that it's a good addition so I fully trust every game-design designed you make to be a great one Smiley

Anyway keep up the good work, these features are as enticing as ever!

Haha, thank you!

P.S. Is it just me or are you increasing feature-scope per release because we're running out of release versions before 1.0? Tongue

I think it's more that a lot of these things all need each other to work. Building up to colonies was quite a process, with the economy revamp, industries/administrators/etc, ship production and blueprints, orbital stations, and probably some things I'm not thinking of just now. And then all that really needs pirate bases/raids/etc to really make it click. Sometimes it's just hard to pick out a compelling standalone subset when the features are so interrelated.
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AspirantEmperor
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« Reply #58 on: June 15, 2018, 04:51:53 PM »

Quote from: Alex
Yeah, for sure, there are other options for sources of trouble. It's just that if you can take pirates out of that equation, it gets weird, and it also gets a bit bug-prone trying to remember to account for the "oh, right, pirates might not be hostile" possibility everywhere.

I agree pirates should always be hostile. If they were part of a more reasonable sub-faction, that sub-faction would be lobbed in with the independents instead.
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Gothars
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« Reply #59 on: June 15, 2018, 05:47:05 PM »

This all seems pretty cool. I especially like the "objectives" idea. Will core worlds also get them? Seems like it would make the life of ordinary pirates much harder if patrols had extra burn and sensor strength.

Quote
I’m also a fan of sneaking around with a smaller fleet, so something that can encourage that would be ideal.

Does the "luring away"-mechanic encourage the use of smaller fleets, though? Seems like it just doesn't discourage it further. Big fleets can lure away the enemy too, after all, for an even less risky (and thus statistically cheaper) fight. Not to be nitpicky, I'd just like to see some real advantage to the use of small fleets, not just a (partial) compensation of the disadvantages.
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