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Author Topic: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?  (Read 1558 times)

AxleMC131

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Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« on: April 25, 2019, 01:46:09 AM »

Dumb question I'm sure, but it's taken me this long since reading it in the 0.9 patch notes way back when to realise that I've never seen any reason for the removal of the speed penalty on ships in nebula clouds in combat. More to the point, I don't recall anyone else asking about it. And I really don't understand how I've been so unthinking about the whole thing until now.  ??? Alex mind-control powers confirmed (jk)

Was there some PSA about it that I missed? Why was the feature removed, and with such little fanfare?
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TaLaR

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2019, 01:59:44 AM »

I suspect it's because AI was painfully unaware of it. As result it was one-sided mechanic useful only for player, just like over-top-speed inertial movement that was removed few version ago.

Then again, by same reasoning Hyperion and phase frigates should be immediately removed too, as even harder balance-breakers... So maybe I'm overthinking.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2019, 02:03:57 AM by TaLaR »
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Midnight Kitsune

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2019, 07:20:32 PM »

IIRC this mechanic is still in the game, just in the settings file under something like nebula slowdown per ship class
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Tei

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2019, 08:28:05 AM »

Well to be fair, nebula and space dust IRL would be more or less intangible and unseeable unless you view it from really far away.
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SCC

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2019, 08:49:10 AM »

Unless you moved at a very high speed, where even "intangible" increases in space dust density would have a very tangible impact on your ship...
As for the original question, I remember a justification of "AI can't perceive it at all and it benefits only the player".

Null Ganymede

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2019, 10:36:55 PM »

It was great for taking fights you shouldn't. Bait AI into nebula, re-roll map until you get some clear space surrounded by it, set up camp.
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Camael

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2019, 02:14:00 AM »

That's actually sad. It's a single player game, so it should be all about exploiting features to overcome superior brute force. It even makes sense lore-wise, the player as a shady privateer (and his officers) should have experience and methods to deal with nebulas and dustclouds, while the run-off-the-mill military officer probably would not be terribly prepared (think Empire vs. Solo) and thus fail at it - confusion that can then be exploited to do the classic underdog protagonist victory. And no, pirates are all disorganized and probably drunk, so they don't get to know their terrain even if they constantly hide in it...
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Megas

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2019, 07:42:33 AM »

Alex tends to remove features that the AI cannot exploit (except by accident once in a blue moon).  Stuff that player can abuse against the AI, while AI cannot do the same back at the player.  For example:
* hard flux on fading shots removed (so player cannot kite and wear down enemy shields while hovering just beyond weapon range).
* jets gliding (for ships with Maneuvering Jets)
* vent cancelling (on ships with Burn Drive)
* vent spamming (except Mudskipper 2)

AI getting stuck in nebula is probably one such thing.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2019, 07:46:35 AM by Megas »
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HELMUT

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2019, 11:40:54 AM »

I don't think the nebula effect was removed because the AI couldn't exploit it, but rather because it wasn't fun.

In theory, using the battlefield to your advantage to beat an opponent is a good thing, it's fun, even if it means another handicap to the AI. In practice, it's too random and complicated to pull it off in the campaign.  The only time i managed to exploit and get a noticeable advantage from the environnement was during missions, thanks to their handcrafted environnement that suits the battle. But i never managed to do it with noticeable effect in the campaign.

The first thing that would come to mind would be "buff the environnement!" to compensate for the lackluster impact of nebulas. But buff it too much, and you end up getting a feature the player can abuse like those that Megas listed above. It would force the player to exploit it over and over to get that big impact, which would inevitably reduce the potential amount of "fun". Moreover, trying to find the proper balance for something randomly generated in the campaign would take a lot of trial and error testing.

Hence, the reason i suppose Alex dropped it. Not worth the effort to keep, nor the effort to balance it this late in the development.

I wouldn't mind seeing a modder take a shot at it though...
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AxleMC131

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2019, 03:04:25 PM »

Thanks for the intel everyone. Whether it be true or merely hypothesis, it's quite interesting nonetheless. Also sets my mind at ease, cheers folks.  :)
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Null Ganymede

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Re: Why was the in-combat nebula slowdown removed?
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2019, 07:06:29 PM »

The Tiandong hull bonus nulling out the nebula penalty was good flavor.
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