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Author Topic: Challenge Mode/Next Wave Options  (Read 372 times)

Terethall

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Challenge Mode/Next Wave Options
« on: March 23, 2020, 10:26:08 AM »

Given the sandboxy nature of Starsector, and the way the game kind of ends when you get bored, I found myself looking for ways to increase the challenge and make the game more interesting on a strategic level for playthroughs subsequent to my first. After slowly cutting out everything I feel like makes the game boringly easy and that results in loops that avoid combat, I present the following challenge mode: Eat What You Kill.

Rule 1: The only thing you can purchase from markets is Fuel, Supplies, Crew, and Marines. Crucially this means NO ships, NO weapons/LPCs, and NO modspecs. It also means no commodities for easy smuggling cash, but you could relax that portion of the rule if you are struggling to find cash for salaries. Also optionally, no restoring your ships. Best invest into the Industry tree.
Rule 2: No salvaging other fleets' battles. This means no looting Conquests from the sidelines of a battle between two factions you're neutral with. Optionally, you may allow yourself to loot procgen debris fields and derelicts. You can salvage and recover derelicts spawned by battles you instigate.
Rule 3: No completing exploration or survey missions. The only missions you can complete are bounties or other missions that require direct combat. Optionally you can let yourself accept delivery missions, but you have to just sell the goods (or keep them, in the case of fuel and supplies) and deal with the rep hit and retribution fleet.
Rule 4: No colonies.
Rule 5: No storage. Free, or paid. Equip it, sell it, eject it, or spend some precious OP to slap Expanded Cargo Holds on one more ship.
Rule 6: No commission. Optionally, you can commission with Pirates or Pathers, but you have to play with Ruthless Sector.
Rule 7: No recruiting officers; you've got to find them via salvage. I like this rule because no exploration/survey missions, and no colonies means exploration is a lot less valuable, but if that's the only way to find officers, it makes it worthwhile again.
Rule 8: No raiding markets. You can ignore this and raid if you want, because it's in the right flavor, but it's not combat... just looting with extra steps.
Rule 9: Pirate/Pather faction start (Nex or Vayra) or immediate saturation bombardment of Jangala in Vanilla. Optional, because if you do no missions and prey on mercantile fleets for cash, you'll eventually be hated by everyone.

If you put this all together, what do you get? Well, the endgame catapults of Colonies, sideline salvage, and Tri-Tach/Hegemony commissions aren't available anymore, so you stay in the early to midgame a lot longer, which imo is way more fun than watching your 6 capital ships evaporate Atlas MkIIs and Low Tech stations over and over. You also end up using a much wider variety of ships and loadouts, because you can't just beeline to buy Tempests, Omens, Drovers, Eagles, Falcon (P), and Thunder, Gladius, Longbow, Khopesh, and Hypervelocity Driver, Sabot, Harpoon, Tachyon Lance, Plasma Cannon, Phase Lance, Heavy Needler, Heavy Mauler, etc. and you have to figure out a way to make things work from the loot you get from the ships you kill. You're incentivized to pick hard fights with strong factions for a chance to loot their ships. No purchasing hullmods means the free hullmods that come with skill points are a lot more useful, and you may end up using some hullmods you normally wouldn't otherwise, due to being starved for options.

Also, exploration becomes less about flying a 245 speed, infinite range, 0-cost Dram around from star to star until you have 10 million credits and 100 rep with all factions, or looting and hoarding AI cores, forges, and synchrotrons for your colonies, and more about finding and selling phat lewt on the black market, including blueprints, which then show up in pirate fleets for you to destroy and collect.

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Mondaymonkey

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Re: Challenge Mode/Next Wave Options
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2020, 11:14:50 AM »

Does not related to Starsector, but largely the same:

Left-hand masochistic puzzles rules.
1. Go to a closest store and buy any new puzzle more than 6000 pieces (15000 recommended). You need hight quality puzzle where each piece has it's unique shape and does not have a twin in a set. Some manufacturers offer this.
2. Put all the pieces picture-downside. Remove all "corner" and "side" pieces - you don't need them.
3. Count remaining pieces. 90% goes to the "stockpile", 10% (picked randomly) goes to the "dump" - you need them later.
4. Clear a "table" - large plain area you will play on. Sometimes it is a floor, as you need really large area. Put the "stockpile" into that area (do not forget - picture downside).
5. "Left hand rule" takes it place. You can take any random puzzle from a "stockpile" by a left hand, but you can not return it there. If there are any puzzle in your left hand you can use your right hand to pick any puzzle from a stockpile to check if it fit left hand puzzle. If it fit - put the cluster on the table. If it not - put your right-hand piece back to stockpile. You can also fit your left-hand piece to existing cluster on a table. You are free too fit existing clusters between themselves by right hand only.
6. If you despair to find a fitted piece in a stockpile (it is possible, it not exist, as 10% are in the dump), you can put your left-hand puzzle into the dump.
7. Do 5-6 till stockpile is empty. Move your dump into a stockpile and use a "left hand rule" again. This time there are no option to put left-hand puzzle to a dump, as it not exist anymore. If you can not fit left-hand puzzle to anywhere - you loose, try again.
8. When the puzzle is ready, flip it over to check if the picture is correct. If not - you loose.
9. Have fun? HAVE FUN!!!
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I dislike human beings... or I just do not know how to cook them well.