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News:

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

Poll

What would you like to see in Blackrock?

More ships
- 430 (25.2%)
More weapons
- 288 (16.9%)
More campaign features
- 236 (13.8%)
Space monsters
- 342 (20%)
More lore
- 93 (5.4%)
More music
- 63 (3.7%)
More portraits
- 96 (5.6%)
Subfactions
- 161 (9.4%)

Total Members Voted: 767


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Author Topic: [0.9.1a] Blackrock Drive Yards v0.9.5a (10.06.2019) - Hotfix released  (Read 1215526 times)

Cycerin

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #75 on: September 01, 2012, 11:49:51 AM »

DAMMIT DYSPRAXIA

Ah - not having an easy time of it trying to do the lucifer/am lance combo?
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Cycerin

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #76 on: September 07, 2012, 07:54:57 PM »

Now that school's back in full force and whatnot, the mod has taken a back seat. Still putting in work here and there though. Put together a new ship alongside working on the Nadir, this one being much easier to complete:



The Mantis-class frigate is a dedicated attack vessel, capable of fielding a multitude of missile weapons and hard to intercept due to its enormous engines.

I was thinking I'd make a new type of rocket launcher that would go well with this ship: one that would be much faster and more accurate than the Annihilator, but with smaller salvoes and damage output. Could see the Desdinova fitted with similar weapons to great effect.
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Brainbread

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #77 on: September 07, 2012, 10:08:28 PM »

Maybe a Sabot-type rocket (a two-stage). A small cluster of dumbfire shells that go out in a clump, and then launch themselves at the target when near enough for explosive damage?
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Sweetraveparty

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #78 on: September 08, 2012, 08:08:16 PM »

SO BEAUTIFUL! MY GOD
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WKOB

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #79 on: September 08, 2012, 11:19:27 PM »

Alright, question for you.

While I love the Gonydactylus, both in concept and how it plays, I'm not sure I understand the built-in weapon; it seems fairly useless?
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Xareh

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #80 on: September 09, 2012, 02:34:21 AM »

DAMMIT DYSPRAXIA

Ah - not having an easy time of it trying to do the lucifer/am lance combo?
Actually, spriting at all.
You do know what dyspraxia is, right? It's a handwriting/coordination disorder. For the most part it's wrecked my handwriting alone, I can touch type way rather fast, though that probably derives from a laptop in school.

I couldn't ever draw... :(
But I know what I want my stuff to look like. Which makes it even worse.
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Changes as of May 24, 2013
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WKOB

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #81 on: September 09, 2012, 02:51:09 AM »

Hand eye coordination doesn't have that much to do with this type of artwork at the end of the day. It's all post processing.
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Xareh

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #82 on: September 09, 2012, 03:42:17 AM »

Hand eye coordination doesn't have that much to do with this type of artwork at the end of the day. It's all post processing.
It does for me.
Look, it's really hard for me to convey how difficult it is to draw anything without extreme patience, way too much time and so much hard work for something that could only be a couple hundred pixels in size.
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Changes as of May 24, 2013
  • Reinvented Starsector.
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Cycerin

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #83 on: September 09, 2012, 07:09:14 AM »

Hand eye coordination doesn't have that much to do with this type of artwork at the end of the day. It's all post processing.

My post processing involves a ton of pixel by pixel editing and painting onto the ships, though. But he's got a point. BSF shipmaker and filtering in photoshop are both things that dont take tons of coordination/where you can nudge stuff into place with the arrow keys.

As for the built-in weapon, it's basically a sabot SRM that does high explosive damage and moves faster once it takes off. Use it to damage venting ships without having to close in too far, or to force people to raise shields if you run mostly autocannons.
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harrumph

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #84 on: September 09, 2012, 08:18:46 AM »

More feedback for you!

The mod is fabulous overall. All of the playable ships are super fun (well, the Revenant not so much, but carriers rarely are), the missions are well-balanced and challenging, the sound effects are awesome, everything looks gorgeous, and it all fits in surprisingly well with the vanilla content while filling a bunch of heretofore unfilled niches—it's just outstanding work all around. The Nevermore really stands out, though. The ship is an absolute dream, a perfect glass cannon, difficult but extremely satisfying to use well. Brilliant use of a built-in weapon and a cool new ship system. Blasting a Wolf or Tempest apart when he vents, thinking he's just outside your range, could hardly be more satisfying.

That said, I don't think you should go overboard with built-in weapons; it'd be a shame to make the squall cannon a Desdinova exclusive, especially considering that there's no HE counterpart to the heavy MG (a hard-hitting, short-ranged medium kinetic ballistic gun). The Hammerclaw is (in my opinion) also unnecessary as a built-in piece of the Gonodactylus; I don't think it'd be a balance problem to make that weapon or a similar one (maybe a beefed-up version of the rocket launcher you're planning for the Mantis?) universally available. The Gonodactylus would be well-served by a flexible (medium?) missile slot, too—I'm sure the AI would have an easier time with it—although I guess it'd spoil part of the lore. That ship, by the way, is totally weird and very satisfying to fly when you manage to use it effectively.

The Revenant, apart from not being particularly interesting to pilot, is too expensive FP-wise: an Odyssey is only one point more expensive and outclasses the Revenant in every possible respect except for speed. As a one-on-one combatant, the Revenant is certainly stronger than a Venture, but as part of a fleet I think they each have their strengths and weaknesses, with the Venture obviously providing more valuable fire support options than the Revenant. As it stands, I think the Revenant should be closer to 13 FP than 17, but maybe you could rework it? It's a cool design; it should have something to really set it apart from the other carriers.

The Locust and Krait are the only not-so-good parts of the mod. Nothing wrong with the art, and I like the concept of the Locust (I'm not sure the Krait is really distinct enough from the existing torpedo bombers), but both ships need some serious tweaking. Shields on strike craft are kind of a mixed blessing, putting the ships in great danger of being overloaded. With their 1.0 shield efficiency, a Krait or Locust will take 550 shield damage from a single HVD shot (and they're such big targets, compared to a Dagger or Xyphos, that they actually do get hit by big guns—not that they don't get overloaded by small guns all the time too). Considering that the Locust, with all guns firing, burns 490 flux per second while barely dissipating a quarter of that, and you have a recipe for disaster—it's at full flux in under three seconds, and almost anything will overload it. Even just to use all of its guns effectively, the Locust needs a higher flux capacity; I think it'd be better off without shields at all, with heavier armor to compensate. Might be better with fewer and/or lower-flux weapons, too. The Krait, since its weapons barely use any flux, doesn't fare as badly as the Locust (which is practically useless in its current state), but it is still very easy to overload.

Sorry if that got a little negative (apparently, that's my MO—and what else would you expect from a guy who calls himself harrumph, right?); I really do think it's an awesome mod and I can't wait to see it grow and improve!
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Cycerin

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #85 on: September 09, 2012, 12:48:57 PM »

Thanks a ton for the awesome praise and feedback.

And man, negative feedback is usually the most valuable - provided it's written at length. Negative oneliners are profoundly unhelpful.

I admit to having had some trouble balancing the fighters. The Krait went back and forth between being a superheavy unshielded fighter and being the bomber it currently is, but neither felt quite "right". The Locust fares well when its delegated to killing enemy fighters, but it has trouble absorbing shots that would have slipped inbetween smaller fighters. I have half-considered turning it into a frigate instead, thoughts on that?

As for the gono, the reason it has a built-in weapon that works the way it does, is because the AI can't pilot it if it has a medium missile slot. I've tried everything, but if it has a sabot SRM pod or proxy launcher, it never fires them, and if it has a Harpoon, it tries to stay out of close range and slowly waste its shots on nothing in particular. Likewise, a fixed hardpoint containing a gun of some sorts also never gets used.

The Revenant is expensive because it basically comes with a free fighter wing - its drones. Being basically completely unbombable when its drones are up, and being able to sic them on a frigate or fighter wing to instantly destroy it, the ship is deceptively powerful in my opinion. It's also fast, fairly well shielded, and can be kitted out with a surprisingly powerful weapons package. I might consider dropping it a few notches down on the FP scale, but I certainly think it outperforms the other mid-size carriers in the game.
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harrumph

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #86 on: September 10, 2012, 02:43:30 PM »

I admit to having had some trouble balancing the fighters. The Krait went back and forth between being a superheavy unshielded fighter and being the bomber it currently is, but neither felt quite "right". The Locust fares well when its delegated to killing enemy fighters, but it has trouble absorbing shots that would have slipped inbetween smaller fighters. I have half-considered turning it into a frigate instead, thoughts on that?

Well, I think a big, gun-heavy fighter wing is unique in a way that a frigate probably wouldn't be (although there are surprisingly few ballistic-oriented vanilla frigates), and besides, how can you have something called the Locust be a single ship? We need swarms of them! In fact, adding a third Locust to each wing would increase their survivability quite a bit (and if you had to resize the art, being smaller would make them less vulnerable too), although you'd still have to do something about the ship's flux problems. How do you envision them functioning in combat, kind of like tiny frigates that can be repaired by a carrier? Are they primarily an anti-fighter escort, or should they be harassing larger ships? (The needler suggests the latter, but then their armament is pretty mixed.)

It's a shame that giant torpedoes cover up the Krait art, by the way. Did you ever try making it a non-missile-based strike craft? Mounting an AM blaster or something similar on a fighter might be crazy, but it would definitely be different, and it'd fit well with the faction's tactical rubric. Balancing would be tricky, but since it's a fighter wing at least you wouldn't have to worry about the player exploiting it (well, not through direct control). A hardpoint mount for the weapon and poor maneuverability for the ship might be a good start? The shields would obviously have to go, too.

Quote
As for the gono, the reason it has a built-in weapon that works the way it does, is because the AI can't pilot it if it has a medium missile slot. I've tried everything, but if it has a sabot SRM pod or proxy launcher, it never fires them, and if it has a Harpoon, it tries to stay out of close range and slowly waste its shots on nothing in particular. Likewise, a fixed hardpoint containing a gun of some sorts also never gets used.

Weird! It's not so bad with the Hammerclaw, all things considered (every now and then it just randomly takes a shot in the absolute wrong direction, but hey, sometimes I do too), and it's actually quite good about swinging its broadside around to ward off frigates and the like.

Quote
The Revenant is expensive because it basically comes with a free fighter wing - its drones. Being basically completely unbombable when its drones are up, and being able to sic them on a frigate or fighter wing to instantly destroy it, the ship is deceptively powerful in my opinion. It's also fast, fairly well shielded, and can be kitted out with a surprisingly powerful weapons package. I might consider dropping it a few notches down on the FP scale, but I certainly think it outperforms the other mid-size carriers in the game.

The drones make an effective PD screen for the Revenant, but they're pretty easy to pick off (they have short-range weapons, and the carrier itself doesn't have much long-range punch) and, unlike an actual fighter wing, they can't be replenished indefinitely. I find that when they're set to "free roam," rather than swarming effectively, they just sort of wander off and get swatted in twos and threes. (I might be doing something wrong.) In any event, the Revenant only has two medium weapon mounts—with MGs or autocannons mounted forwards, it can chew up enemy shields, but then it can't really finish the job; you could stick a bunch of assault guns (or squall cannons) up there, but then you'd have a hard time breaking through the shields of even a destroyer. It's a solid ship, definitely a tough nut to crack, but it's not very scary to go up against, and much less interesting to fly than the other BRDY ships. Maybe longer-range weapons on the drones? More medium guns on the cruiser?
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Wyvern

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #87 on: September 10, 2012, 02:54:56 PM »

My personal fitting for the Revenant involved a flak cannon (Or was it dual flak?  I forget.), a heavy blaster, and some light needlers; the combination seemed to work fairly well at destroying enemy frigates, even in reasonably large numbers, and the needlers complement its drones nicely.  Still not that great against anything its size, but that's ok - it's a carrier, after all.

The Gonodactylus, though... I tried three or four different setups, and eventually just gave up on getting any use out of the hammerclaw; my final configuration was three light needlers and an assault chaingun.  (Would've preferred a heavy mauler, but the AI had a tendency to sit at extreme range and try to bring down enemy shields with just the mauler.  Not so bright.  The shorter range of the chaingun fixed that problem.)
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Wyvern is 100% correct about the math.

Cycerin

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #88 on: September 10, 2012, 10:21:10 PM »

The idea behind the Locust is that it's supposed to be like a corvette that can be serviced at a flight deck and operates in pairs. Lore-wise, being constructed in a certain way to facilitate this, it's almost impossible to refit. So the Locust is a highly flexible small craft that can assault other fighters or bombers, harass larger ships, and its size results from having to carry an assortment of weapons to perform its role.

What I'll probably do is turn the Krait into a heavy fighter that flies in wings of 3, and make Locusts slightly slower and with a more effective flux/shield stat setup. I'll make a dedicated strike fighter later on. Right now I'm actually slowly working my way up in Uomoz' Corvus (it works with Blackrock mod) using a captured Revenant, an Enforcer, a Rickshaw and a Hound, and I honestly still feel the Revenant's drones are quite worthwhile. It can refabricate them slowly over time too, like the Tempest. Microing your drones is supposed to be the appeal of manually piloting a Revenant, so I made them squishy yet armed to the teeth. They eat low-tech ships alive, and having 8 light mortars and 4 vulcans munching away at a big ship from behind adds up really fast. I just saw a Wolf trying desperately to teleport away from four of those drones only to get slowly taken apart by them after overloading from a HV driver shot. Hounds, Buffalos and Lashers are fish food. Love dem barracudas personally.

Anyway, as you can tell from looking at the Revenant's graphics, it used to have a large ballistic slot. I might end up giving it back that one. Should help it stand out a bit and give it more useful loadout options. If I did that then the current ballistic slot would become the medium energy slot instead.

I don't really like the side sponson guns on the Scarab and I'll probably take them off, unless someone's completely in love with them for whatever reason. The entire frigate is supposed to be quite adaptable and with a generous armament, and it fits that bill quite well right now, but.. ugh. Those sponsons dont jive with me.

I still have a lot of balancing work to do. :D
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WKOB

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Re: Blackrock Drive Yards - First version release!
« Reply #89 on: September 11, 2012, 06:20:11 PM »

The sponsons are the most effective PD positions in my experience.
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