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News:

Starsector 0.9.1a is out! (05/10/19); Blog post: Skills and Story Points (07/08/19)

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Author Topic: Combat mechanics; fixing 'range+speed is king', AI kiting behaviour & CR wars  (Read 901 times)

Schwartz

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So that's why Remnants are so fun to fight against. I thought they were just wired never to retreat. But they really go for weaknesses with dogged determination. Except for the capital. Those bastards play peekaboo all the time. ;)

I mean... I sympathize with OPs point. We want a screwdriver for every screw. If one ship is just superior to another in every aspect, well, that ain't fair! Here's the thing though.. SS isn't fair and neither is combat in real life. You can mitigate a situation that looks bad on the strategic map by various means of evasion. But once you're in combat, you're in combat. I don't think an inferior ship should be given a tool just so it gets to 'have a chance'.

I haven't yet heard of a perfect solution to kiting, and I don't even know if kiting's a problem. It is annoying if you're the one being kited, but it is a valid and efficient tactic used in real warfare. As was said, the AI doesn't exploit this mechanic to its fullest extent anyway. It only becomes a problem if you're a player who habitually and exclusively kites or solos. And even then.. tedious for me, but if it's fun for you, go for it.

I would say "1v1 combat in starsector can be problematic" and leave it at that. The beginning of the game is full of risk and plays a little differently, and I love that about it. It is really quite rare to end up in 1v1s. You get a bunch of free ships at the start.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2019, 05:12:47 PM by Schwartz »
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TrashMan

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There's a way to somewhat fix this - most kiting ship rely on the fact that they can go backwards at the same speed as forwards.

Give backwards/forwards speeds and acceleration different values. Now the fast kiters cannot get away fast without turning around and exposing their engines - at least not against enemy ships that aren't slow tubs.
Against giant, slow ships their reverse thrust should be enough.
Kiters live and die by their engines, but the way the game is currently designed, those engines are always safe in a 1 vs 1 fight.

Aside from that, what you can do is give kiting ships greater CR loss. Constantly puling hard manouvers must be hard on a ship.
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Schwartz

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But they literally just go backwards. Hard maneuvers are what happens in combat when not kiting usually.

I think ships already go only a certain percentage of maximum when going backwards. Correct me if I'm wrong.
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goduranus

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They have same top speed forward and backward, but I think backward acceleration is lower. This is very noticeable on ships without Helmsmanship skill, but Helmsmanship skill give the ship a really big acceleration boost that the difference between forward and reverse acceleration is barely noticeable. Also there seems to be no difference on Eagles and Falcons that are using their special ability.
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TaLaR

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Yes, forward acceleration > side > backward. Maneuvering jets add so much that base doesn't matter for Eagle/Falcon.
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TrashMan

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I'd say that difference should be made bigger and move obvious. Not just acceleration, but max speed as well. Small kiting ships usually have such high acceleration that it doesn't really matter (especially with skills). They reach their top speed going backwards almost instantly
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koprus

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A slight but i think fair counter to this would be to change flameout so that when anti-engine missiles disable the ship,
it doesnt maintain it's current speed/velocity, but keeps decreasing until engines come back online again. Bring missiles!
Even better, make the speed decrease less the bigger the ship is, so that not to affect large ships that much.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2019, 09:10:54 AM by gderek »
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Ranakastrasz

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Archean Order mod has a number of effects. High speed fighters, Regenerating missiles, and a flux boost up to 7%. Also a large number of weapons that produce no flux. Overall, It is practically impossible to kite enemies to death because the majority of ships have long range options, and can always hold shields up while flux boosting.

It causes other problems, admittedly, but kiting isn't one of them anymore.
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