Fractal Softworks Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

Starsector 0.9.1a is out! (05/10/19); Blog post: GIF Roundup (04/11/20); The forum will be down for maintenance from the night of Monday, August 10th into Tuesday, EST

Author Topic: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)  (Read 3586 times)

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1403
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« on: September 24, 2012, 10:10:12 PM »

Ok, so I was considering making another mod that both ties in and can be separate from Rise of Archeus (just released btw!). I wanted to see if there is any interest within the community for this mod before I set out to do it since it would be a rather large project.

The basic idea would be to redesign carriers and the role of fighters in Starfarer. The things this mod would focus on:

Fighters:

1) Fighters would be slightly smaller, much cheaper and cost less fleet points. This would allow for more fighter variety in fights and greatly increase the amount of fighters in any given battle.

2) To compensate for the increased number of fighters, all fighters would have their damage output reduced by 50% and hull/armor/flux/shield reduced by 25%. This way swarms of fighters would still be hard-pressed to overwhelm a large ship and wouldn't make fighter swarms the only way to victory.

3) Since reducing fighter damage would also decrease their respective weapons on larger ships, all fighters would get a built-in version of the same weapon only at half the damage. This way point defense weapons stay the same and would not have to be rebalanced and would be just as effective at missile defense as vanilla. The built-in weapons for the fighters would not be available to players and so would not cause confusion when suddenly one weapon does half damage and one doesn't.

4) Fighter sprite size and bounds would be reduced by either 25% or 50% to avoid too much clustering in combat.

5) Dogfights between fighters would also last longer since their effective defense would only be reduced by 25%. This would also make them harder to be taken out by standard point defense while not making them any more of a threat by their damage potential.

6) *in debate* This one I'm considering but not sold on how it will effect balance. Fighters will go an average of 25%-50% faster. Makes fighter battles intense and realistic, but again not sure if this will make them too hard to kill or not. May have to increase the turn rate of pd and anti-fighter weapons to compensate.


Large Ships:

1) Because many more fighters would be on the field, standard flight decks would be too few to make effective refitting efficient enough to value flight deck ships. To fix this, most (with a few exceptions) cruiser-class and above vessels will now have 1 or more flight decks in addition to their hangar space. Since most large ships now have flight decks, fighters can still regularly dock at a larger ship to resupply and repair. Also gives the game a bit more "Star Wars" or "Halo" feel in that all big ships dock and use fighters.

2) All hangar space would looked at to determine how many fighter wings one ship should be allowed to carry. (may not need to be changed)


Carriers:

1) Since the flight deck is no longer the valuable and distinctive trait that carriers have to stand out and account for their lack of armament, a new system would be designed to give carriers that distinctive feel from other ships. This would replace (or in some cases come alongside) the current ship systems for the carriers currently in the game. See second point for details.

2) Carriers now have the ability to field their own stock of fighters for free via the "drone" system. Carriers would have several wings of fighters and in some cases of capital ships bombers or other heavier craft that they could deploy or recall at will. Just like drones, fighters could be on escort duty for their home carrier, or left to roam the map and look for targets at will (I believe the A.I for drones is currently up to the task to make fighters at least mostly realistic and make bombers target large ships etc). Carriers could also repair(and maybe resupply) their own fighters. They would also have a reserve of fighters to replace in combat (though their would still be a limit).

3) Now the main benefits of carriers are the ability to always have fighters in every battle that you will not have to re-buy or cost crew if they are destroyed. They will also still generally have more flight decks than other ships as well.

4) The downsides of carriers are that they will have an increased FP and crew cost to accommodate for the units they can now field. Carrier fielded fighters also cannot be directly controlled and cannot capture strategic points nor in the case of bombers(I'm pretty sure this won't happen) will they assist in strikes. They will engage targets at their own discretion. Since they do not technically "use" crew they also do not benefit from veteran or elite pilot status.


How I think this will change Starfarer

1) Fighters will be more desirable to bring along without carriers because they are cheap, effective, great at capturing points and less of a money sink since most large ships have flight decks to repair and resupply them.

2) Large ships that are not carriers can better support fighters if the player wants to have a few wings without worrying that those wings will be too squishy without a carrier. In the case of bombers, they will no longer be a "one trick pony" as long as a larger ship is within the fleet.

3) Carriers still fill their iconic role since they make fighters even more effective in that they are free in all ways when fielding a carrier or two with the fleet with the needed downside that they are less versatile when coming from a carrier.

4) It will not in any way change the balance of frigate having fighter escorts since non carrier fighters are the same effectiveness with a slightly higher cost but more versatility.

5) Command points will become slightly more valuable since telling an interceptor wing to attack a frigate by itself will no longer be as advisable. Two or even three wings will now need to attack a pd loaded frigate to really be able to do the necessary damage. Fighters will still be great at harassing however.

6) Strikes by player controlled bomber wings remain unchanged since all bombers follow strike commands at once.


Summary

1) More fighters while maintaining balance.

2) Many ships have flight decks.

3) Carriers now carry and field their own "free" fighters at a cost in FP and crew.


***note that this will most likely be a total conversion mod since almost all of the data of the vanilla ships and will need to be changed to accommodate the new balance! Many mods will most like not be compatible!***


However, if I get the go ahead, I plan to implement this mod into Rise of Archeus so it will at least be compatible with that. That way their will be a vanilla version, a ROA version, and a ROA non carrier rebalance version.

If this gets underway and any developer wants this implemented into their mod (completely or as a standalone version) feel free to ask and I will try to either do it myself or give you the necessary info for you to do it.

So what do you guys think? What do you like/dislike? Anyone have anything to request? Does my reasoning seem sound balance-wise?

Do I have the green light? :P
Logged

TheHappyFace

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1168
  • The critic
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2012, 10:27:11 PM »

hmm i always like carrier fleets.
just one thought i have atm.
isnt it easier to not change vanilla starfarer, but to add a faction based upon this idea.
this way people can still decide to go for vanilla and fight the mod faction  or go nuts with the carriers and fight the vanilla faction.
i like the idea of having more but weaker fighters ,but to make a full mod out of it?
I would go for creating one or two faction based upon this and make it a non-total conversion.
this way people can also fight or use the fleets in combination with other mods.
but this is just an opinion of mine.
a mod using lots of fighters cant be a failure  ;)
Logged
Fractalsoftworks limited edition ban hammer.

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1403
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2012, 10:44:00 PM »

hmm i always like carrier fleets.
just one thought i have atm.
isnt it easier to not change vanilla starfarer, but to add a faction based upon this idea.
this way people can still decide to go for vanilla and fight the mod faction  or go nuts with the carriers and fight the vanilla faction.
i like the idea of having more but weaker fighters ,but to make a full mod out of it?
I would go for creating one or two faction based upon this and make it a non-total conversion.
this way people can also fight or use the fleets in combination with other mods.
but this is just an opinion of mine.
a mod using lots of fighters cant be a failure  ;)

Thanks for the feedback!  :D

While I originally thought to do exactly what you describe with Rise of Archeus, when I stopped and looked at it two things came to ruin the day. One, the faction with tons of fighters needs substantially more command points to be effective since its fighters are weaker than vanilla fighters and it takes two or three wings to compete. Also a player using those fighters has to constantly re-buy them since they die all the time. OR if that faction has equally good fighters just in larger numbers and cheaper... well why wouldn't you just skip all the vanilla ones and just use the cheaper, better ones?  ;) The same goes for the larger ships with flight decks but equally powerful armaments as vanilla ships... why wouldn't you want a flight deck added on?

The point being that it is extremely difficult to make one faction just as fun and desirable to play as the other one when they are so radically different within the game design perspective of Starfarer. Players would feel pidgeon-holed into going for one or the other since they were so imbalanced. With a total conversion, you get around that problem by making all the ships the same fun to play regardless of faction and leave it up to the player to decided whether they want to use carriers or not. What I am trying to do is make either play style just as viable within the game. The only way to do that effectively however, is to make all fighters carriers and ships roughly the same in the sense of their respective roles. If one carrier is a "better" carrier at the same cost and hull size, the game just isn't fun anymore.

Just my two cents.

That being said I can still have a version that way if people want it! The nice thing is that by creating it in different sections, I can basically have different versions of varying compatibilities. Too many versions though and patches will be a nightmare! haha.
Logged

PCCL

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1995
  • still gunnyfreak
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2012, 12:03:35 AM »

I for one will be trying it out....

do it if you have the time... what's the harm, right?

Logged
mmm.... tartiflette

xenoargh

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 4860
  • naively breaking things!
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2012, 12:14:15 AM »

What I found, with fighter balance, is that you just need to make it cheap enough, money-wise, to constantly replace losses, and to modify the code for deliveries so that enough fighters are in the shops.  Then cheap, easily-killed fighters aren't really a serious balance issue.  Just go buy some more.

That said, I don't feel that the Vanilla fighters are an efficient use of FP or money atm, so I don't really see how making them weaker, but substantially cheaper and easier to deploy in bunches can result in something that's terrifically OP.
Logged
Please check out my SS projects :)
Xeno's Mod Pack

PCCL

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1995
  • still gunnyfreak
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2012, 01:09:36 AM »

I actually find fighters (in their own right) just fine as is. I even nerfed them in my personal mod by tripling their repair time (also to buff the Astral compared to the other CV's
Logged
mmm.... tartiflette

TheHappyFace

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1168
  • The critic
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2012, 03:04:31 AM »

or you'll just give the carriers a drone system containing the fighters.
make it so the drones dont respawn (ammo).
then  they are just like fighter ^^
just dont know how you could make it so they go attack stuff instead of swarming around the carrier :/
Logged
Fractalsoftworks limited edition ban hammer.

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1403
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2012, 05:02:37 PM »

Ok then well there are some mixed feelings here, but I think there is enough interest at least to do the mod. I will also attempt to balance it out in Rise of Archeus so that Vanilla won't have to be changed much if I can. So right now there will be three separate mods and I will probably choose two to continue to update based on popular opinion. One that is a total conversion of vanilla. One that is a total conversion of ROA and one that is a faction mod of ROA.

We will see how the balance works then.
Logged

DelicateTask

  • Commander
  • ***
  • Posts: 222
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2012, 10:43:56 AM »

I'll be honest, I don't care for this idea and I like the way fighters work currently. However, if you make this mod, I'll try it, and I'll try to keep an open mind about it. Who knows, you might be on to something. The only way to find out is to try it.
Logged

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1403
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2012, 11:53:10 AM »

Ok well I have made the systems and I have to say that they work GREAT! Usually a ship will have a defense wing or two and several attack wings. Attack wings will travel within a certain radius of the carrier and attack any enemies they encounter (even if the carrier isn't currently targeting that particular enemy). Interceptors will prioritize fighters and bombers and assault fighters will prioritize frigate+ ships. Defense wings have a tight orbit around the carrier and will prioritize missiles and fighters. Carriers usually have enough fighters to replace either role as needed but they do not build their own fighters during combat (regen).

Also IMO the increased speed and reduced damage and health pool of fighters makes dogfighting much more visceral and "hollywood" style action dogfighting.

I will put up some screenshots and maybe a video if possible!
Logged

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1403
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Re: Carrier Rebalance Mod (yay or nay?)
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2012, 08:48:26 PM »

Here are some screenshots of a test run of the hangar ship system.

Spoiler
Action Shots



System While Idle


Engaging an Onslaught with Fighter Escorts


[close]
Logged