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Starsector 0.97a is out! (02/02/24); New blog post: Codex Overhaul (05/11/24)

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Messages - Kadatherion

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1
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Tahlan Shipworks
« on: October 07, 2023, 02:14:59 AM »
Is there a Traumtanzer blueprint? The Halbmond didn't give it to me. I only ever found the single ship. Is the story supposed to end at the message which pointed to a constellation as containing something interesting? Is it Traumtanzer or something else because I already found it before the Halbmond and was wondering if its worth searching.

The Traumtanzer is unique with no blueprint as far as I know.  If you find the Traumtanzer before the Halbmond you won't miss anything as the last part of the Halbmond quest just points you to the Traumtanzer's location.

Yep, it's the unique version of the Rosenritter standard capital (for which you do get the blueprint). So no blueprint for the Traum itself (unless via other mods). Also, it's *especially* unique: it's a notable ship, like the Ziggy in vanilla, meaning it will cause your fleet to always be recognized by others. As, unlike the Ziggy, the effect is tied to its special hullmod and not the unique ship entity itself, I believe even if you had the blueprint any new Traumtanzer you'd build would have the same feature, which would feel a bit inconsistent.

A bit of a shame, imho, as it's a really annoying mechanic which makes me keep it in storage most of the time instead of actually using it, but heh, it's a very OP ship, I can understand needing to find something to balance that.

2
Mods / Re: [0.96a] ScalarTech Solutions 0.9
« on: October 07, 2023, 02:01:50 AM »
Going through the files, I couldn't find a reason for them NOT to be constantly be at loggerheads.  Beyond the ideological incompatibilities, Diable only really 'gets along' with other exploitive ***.  I could see there being a Minimum Relationship to prevent war, but why would Spindle join them in wars of conquest?

Well, if you set a relationship limit (to mention other faction mods, like, for instance, the Interstellar Imperium has with the Hegemony and Iron Shell, Mayasura with the Hegemony, IS, the Church etc), you can avoid Spindle and Diable ever getting into an alliance. Like, limit it to +20, +40 tops perhaps. Now that you made me think of it, I'm probably gonna do it myself for my future runs: I anyway always use operatives to keep their relationship neutral as indeed them getting into a full blown alliance feels a bit inconsistent with their characterization, might as well set it from the beginning and avoid having to babysit them.

3
Mods / Re: [0.96a] ScalarTech Solutions 0.9
« on: October 06, 2023, 01:16:40 AM »
Playing with ScalarTech in my current game i got a bounty early on for the Silken Banshee.
I went to check it out but was no match for the banshee's fleet.
Now that I'm stronger and feel ready the bounty no longer exist, does that mean that I will not be able to fight her?
Is there any way to trigger the event again?

You can reset the bounty with the console (need the console commands mod and of course MagicLib): Magiclib_ResetBounty [bountyID] is the command you need (you can find the Banshee bounty ID with Magiclib_listbounties, but it should be tahlan_SilkenBansheeBty ). You'll need to get it again from scratch as usual in a bar.

4
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Persean Chronicles, a quest mod (updated 2023-07-24)
« on: October 02, 2023, 09:03:15 AM »
Well, in my game I might have just solved it with the console (removeindustry - addindustry to the Kassadar star fortress: just like manually dismantling and rebuilding it after an invasion, the phantom fleet goes away). So all looks fine now (not that anything was really problematic before either, as mentioned, but still, better safe than sorry).

Should it help you for troubleshooting, here in the spoiler tag my current modlist, in case it could be something there what unintentionally calls for that fleet. It's actually quite a bit more lightweight than usual, as in this run I removed several faction/content mods I used to play with simply because I was getting annoyed at the lack of a real sorting function for weapons, which becomes a nightmare in the late game if you have too much modded content in it.

Spoiler
{"enabledMods": [
  "$$$_trailermoments",
  "pantera_ANewLevel40",
  "adjustable_skill_thresholds",
  "AttunedDriveField",
  "combatactivators",
  "lw_console",
  "customizablestarsystems",
  "DetailedCombatResults",
  "diableavionics",
  "edshipyard",
  "fleet_journal",
  "GrandColonies",
  "illustrated_entities",
  "IndEvo",
  "interestingportraitspack",
  "Imperium",
  "timid_xiv",
  "lw_lazylib",
  "lockedAndLoaded",
  "lunalib",
  "MagicLib",
  "Mayasuran Navy",
  "more_ship_names",
  "wisp_NeutrinoDetectorMkII",
  "nexerelin",
  "objects_analysis",
  "officerExtension",
  "wisp_perseanchronicles",
  "planet_search",
  "portrait_changer",
  "assortment_of_things",
  "Recovery_Shuttles_Buff",
  "roider",
  "Rugged_Construction_buff",
  "scalartech",
  "SEEKER",
  "bruh_ship_browser",
  "swp",
  "Solar_Shielding_Buff",
  "stelnet",
  "scf",
  "tahlan",
  "Terraforming & Station Construction",
  "timid_tmi",
  "underworld",
  "US",
  "whichmod",
  "shaderLib",
  "ShipCatalogVariantEditor"
]}
[close]

5
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Persean Chronicles, a quest mod (updated 2023-07-24)
« on: October 02, 2023, 06:14:34 AM »
Bug report.

It's been many cycles since I did the Telos quest in my current run, but I just recently noticed something pretty strange going on with an independent station (in this case the Kassadar one from Tahlan's Shipworks; as such, I'm not sure whether there might be some mod compatibility thing going on, or if it could have happened with any other vanilla independent station: my guts tell me the latter, as that colony isn't particularly special except for it having a custom submarket for modded ships, but it's just a feeling). The station seems to eternally be engaged in battle against an invisible fleet: at least on the sector view, as when you look at your military options in the colony menu, you can see the fleet is tagged as Luddic Church and definitely looks like your Telos flashback mission one, with that unique capital and the horde of Hegemony ships.

If you get there with the transponder off the menu allows you to "aid the attacking forces" (which should also trigger if you are hostile to the independents), but when you go into the actual battle there's no other ships, only yours. If you are instead recognized, you can only participate in the battle as a defender if you are hostile to the Luddic Church (as per usual): however, even if you destroy the fleet - which in this case does indeed spawn in the battlefield - the station will remain in that "engaged in battle" mode as before, only against an empty "unknown attack fleet".

I even tried destroying the orbital station with a kill console command and wait for it to regenerate after the repairs, but as soon as it respawned the engaged in battle situation kicked back in.

Only other experiment I did was trying to invade the colony (with Nex) to see if the issue would persist after the faction change: and unfortunately the permanent battle engagement does come back as soon as the station is repaired even after the takeover. Only, this time you can't even see any "military option" in the colony menu, nor you can interact with the supposedly ongoing battle in any way. However, at that point you can remove the orbital station alltogether from the colony management menu, and when you build a new one from scratch, finally the problem seems not to come back.

Now, as aforementioned, my game has been going perfectly fine for many cycles since I first noticed the issue and even much before that since when it triggered (I'd think during the Telos quest, for obvious reasons, although I have no proof of that), so nothing too bad is probably going on and the bug is relatively harmless. Even if it doesn't cause leaks, crashes or similar severe issues though, a station permanently in such an engaged mode might mess with certain things such as raids, Nex invasions logic et cetera: it being tied to an independent colony - at least in my case - definitely lowers the chances of such events overlapping (IE: no faction tries to invade independent planets in Nex), but I can't be sure the same would apply under different conditions.

I guess Kassadar could have been the colony where I got the Telos mission (it's a size 5+ independent market as required by the mission to trigger, and one I visit very often as I play with Nia's ships a lot), but it was relatively early game, it's been a couple weeks, so I definitely can't confirm that as I don't remember, don't even have a save from back then anymore. I would imagine perhaps you had to anchor the flashback mission fleet to something for it to work, and the code fails at removing it afterwards? Just speculation, of course, you obviously know much better what might be going on under the hood.

Spoiler
[close]

6
I added the mod to an existing save but nothing happened, i dont see any new structures that i can build.
Same problem when i start a new game. Do i need to do anything to enable the mod?

Is this mod incompatible with Nex?

This mod adds no new structures. It only allows you to build more than 12 on a planet, by adding a scroll bar, and that's it. If you want actual new structures to play with, you'll want to look into this mod's much bigger brother, Industrial Evolution (for which it was basically made, given the 12 slots limit is fine in vanilla, but it feels cramped when you throw new modded industries and structures at it, like IndEvo does).

7
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Nexerelin v0.11.0b "Dark Tower" (fixes 2023-06-17)
« on: September 30, 2023, 05:58:56 AM »

Question for anyone who might have already messed with it: is there any way to increase the range of some Nex settings in Magiclib, or is it compiled in the java/inaccessible on our end?

There are some values I'd like to edit more than what Magiclib lets me (as an example, the frequency of diplomatic events: with many modded factions in the game even one every 60 days - the highest the panel lets me set - is a bit too much for me and I'd like to set it at 90 or even 120), but can't find where I could do it. And, as far as I understand, editing the config file itself like in the past would be moot now, as Magiclib takes priority.
Ingame settings are in LunaLib not MagicLib. You can turn that mod off completely if you don't mind losing its functions (assuming no-one is using it as a dependency), but the min/max values are in Java, yeah. :(
(Hmm, maybe I can make it so that if the config file's value is lower than the code's min or higher than the max, it becomes the new min/max)

Yeah, sorry, too many libs, I'm getting senile and I mixed up the names :P

Unfortunately I can't disable Lunalib, it's required by/useful for like a dozen other mods I'm using and generally it's just a very handy tool. Nex is the only case where I feel the need to go over the max range of some values though, so yeah, if you could find a solution such as what you mentioned with a manual config file edit influencing the ingame min/max limits that'd be cool (that would also confine the change to people really prepared to mess with it and aware of the implications, preventing more casual players to set some unintended values and then come here giving confusing feedback).

That's as long as it's not going to be too much of an headache to implement, of course: I'm sure most people are fine with the default ranges.

8
Mods / Re: [0.95.1a] Diable Avionics 2.70rc3 (2023/04/13)
« on: September 30, 2023, 05:33:32 AM »
I've found Virtuous. Move over Pharrek, move over Skirt, there is new favorite in the fleet! Though I've already seen unique ships thanks to IBB, this is the first one I've decided to recover since it just looks so cool.
What are your loadouts for this beast?

The Virtuous is indeed among the coolest products of the modiverse. However, it can be a bit underwhelming perfomance wise (at least when compared to other notorious modded ships). This is especially true after DAs weapons got a nerfing balance pass a while ago (while many vanilla weapons got a bit better with 0.96). If you pilot it yourself it depends on your preferences and everything can work, but if you give it to an AI officer then unfortunately certain configurations (especially marksman) tend to suck. In that case I'd suggest demolition - burchel - brawler.

The demolition weapons are pretty good against any kind of target and have a similar range, so they behave well at every AI personality (you'll probably still want an aggressive officer for it). Put a couple recsons with them: same range too, and you need the kinetic pressure. The burchel is still a great PD weapon even after the nerf, so it might be all you need for defense: I still pair it with two magicboxes just in case. But the real gamechanger for the AI is the shipsystem from the brawler, as any kind of phase skimming/dashing system tends to increase AI survivability by A LOT. And you really, really, REALLY want survivability for the Virtuous because, unless you change it yourself in the files (it's a super quick edit in ship_data.csv, but still), it's going to be non recoverable should it be destroyed in battle.

Honestly never tried the hangar thing (would have felt a bit strange I guess), but I know en masse over your whole fleet it can become a bit of a meme.

P.S. If you haven't already, you should also look for the other unique in DA, the Gulf cruiser. That's another beauty that's probably going to have you make an exception about your Scalartech themed fleet.

9
Mods / Re: [0.95.1a] Seeker - Unidentified Contact 0.53rc1 (2023/02/27)
« on: September 29, 2023, 12:39:50 AM »
In all probability the hull chance percentages are probably read from files on save start then saved into the save file.

HullFrequency is indeed written in the savefile, but it seems it *does* update: at the very least, I'm looking at it now after I updated Seeker to your version mid game the other day, and the values for the scavengers - as an example - are indeed the same as they are in your edited files. I believe it might just take a while before noticing, as fleets that were already spawned by the game aren't obviously gonna change, and you have to wait for new spawns slowly taking over.

EDIT: yeah, can confirm it. I took right now the chance to also update to your latest version with the frequency further toned down, and indeed all it took was a load and resave to get the new values written on the savefile, so it does definitely update mid game.

10
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Nexerelin v0.11.0b "Dark Tower" (fixes 2023-06-17)
« on: September 24, 2023, 11:56:52 PM »
Question for anyone who might have already messed with it: is there any way to increase the range of some Nex settings in Magiclib, or is it compiled in the java/inaccessible on our end?

There are some values I'd like to edit more than what Magiclib lets me (as an example, the frequency of diplomatic events: with many modded factions in the game even one every 60 days - the highest the panel lets me set - is a bit too much for me and I'd like to set it at 90 or even 120), but can't find where I could do it. And, as far as I understand, editing the config file itself like in the past would be moot now, as Magiclib takes priority.

11
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Tahlan Shipworks
« on: September 14, 2023, 01:07:34 AM »
[...] However, I think you're undervaluing the flux efficiency gap - on low tech ships, flux is a scarce resource, so being able to massively reduce your weapon costs while only sacrificing a little DPS is huge. Generally speaking, that extra 300 flux/sec will buy you much more than an additional 100 kinetic DPS, even factoring in the slightly lower hit strength and accuracy (it's true that Styrix and Gauss have the same projectile speed, I just had a mistaken impression from before TMI existed). [...]

350 to 250 isn't a "little" dps difference, for some weapons it would even be in the ballpark of large mount to medium mount difference: especially when that 350 comes - as explained - with 700 dmg projectiles that are much more effective at penetrating armor even if kinetic. As I've mentioned, the Gauss is less flux efficient on paper (and still overall is at the end of the day, absolutely not gonna deny that, 1.7 is a friggin' lot), but in real gameplay this efficiency gap is much smaller than it looks on the surface: it misses less - every missed shot is wasted flux - and when the enemy shields are down, it still has a decent impact against armor, while the flux spent by the Styrix is more of a waste when it's got to that.
Obviously this also depends on whether you are controlling it manually or the weapon is put on autofire/on an AI ship: the player is smart enough to not try to hit a Wolf at 1800 range (ITU) with a large weapon, so that means less wasted shots = real scenario flux efficiency is closer to what shown on paper. On autofire though? Yeah, accuracy makes a day and night difference. Of course you'll see your flux bar get higher quicker on your flux starved ship when firing the Gauss, but if the Gauss actually kills what the Styrix would have missed, then at the end of the engagement it might have been more efficient (what is dead can't hit your shields and overflux you, so you can continue to fire on other targets without having to stop): weapon stats don't exist in a vacuum (even though it's space, so...  :P ). Also let's not forget that ordnance points can directly translate into more flux vents, so a lower OP cost itself influences the real overall weapon efficiency (and by quite a bit, if combined with certain skills).

I do absolutely agree it's a perfectly valid sidegrade though: indeed as mentioned for flux starved ships (and low tech - ballistics ones often are, at least in vanilla, you're perfectly right about that) it's probably often the most sustainable and consistent - if not necessarily "better" - option. It allows you to play the sniper game even with some ships that wouldn't really be able to sustain a Gauss or two, and that's mighty fine. But that's the whole point: it's a sidegrade, useful for a specific niche/playstyle, so it's hard to justify the higher cost, at least as it can be perceived by the end user. If it's not *better*, then why does it cost me *more*? This happens with several GH weapons: when they could be considered a valid sidegrade like in this case, they also cost noticeably more. And on that matter here comes a final consideration...

The Great Houses are not a real faction.

They are not Spindle, they have no presence in the Sector: some of their equipment and a couple of their ships can in quite rare cases spawn here and there (like in some bounties), but they are mainly meant to be player exclusive "themed" weapons and ships, as there's no faction that actually has a GH doctrine. If they were a real faction, it could be totally reasonable to - for instance - see all their weaponry be somewhat undertuned: maybe because they instead have excellent wings (like Diable Avionics, to make an example, who can dominate the field with their wanzers, but whose weapons are meh at best), or sturdier ships, and so on. That becomes part of the wider 4x balance and faction flavor (and you don't necessarily install a certain faction mod because you want to play as them and/or with their equipment: you might only want to have them as a competitor). GH content however is mainly just for us, they are sort of unique, almost like the Omega weapons but... they aren't that good (or rule subverting), apart from the sniping playstyle they cater to which wouldn't be as easy in pure vanilla.
It's here where the awkwardness comes: when we play with a GH themed fleet we do know we are intentionally putting a little handicap on ourselves for the rule of cool, looks, because the vanilla counterparts would often be better choices. And that handicap is aimed at us and just us, it's not there to balance a faction that has other strengths (indeed, the same could be said for the GH vanilla ship variants at least: they are basically low tech, but their unique faction flavor is a slight time acceleration in exchange for, of all things, less armor? Ouch!). So yeah, some players could feel a bit "punished" for deciding to use that modded content that was indeed meant for them: ain't that kinda counter-intuitive?

I'm not saying that, since they are player oriented, then they can be overpowered, because that would lead to power creep and would itself lessen our choices in the game. But it may definitely allow for a slightly less draconian balance pass.

12
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Persean Chronicles, a quest mod (updated 2023-07-24)
« on: September 13, 2023, 04:07:10 PM »
Karengo, on the other hand, is probably going to be an officer. He's made for the uncertainties and opportunities of space; a showman, a narcissist, and a bit of a daredevil. Plus, he'll be able to fly those fancy new ships you get...

Yeah, in my current campaign he already sort of is, heh. I edited the save to give one of my officers his portrait, and now he pilots the Telos frigate ;) . Actually, I was planning
Spoiler
to be a cheater and give him the destroyer or cruiser that already are in the game files waiting for the next chapters, but I've noticed they are still a bit buggy, they sometimes start spinning around with no way of stopping, so that will have to wait :P Their spritework is already pretty awesome though.
[close]

As for Riley, I understand your point, and I agree storywise it's much more consistent the way it is. I'm happy to see that might be what you are planning for Karengo though, as, like I mentioned, the reason why I suggested it for Riley and her father too in the first place is indeed the lack of any other alternative that has some personality and uniqueness. Some mods already offer contacts with quite a bit of depth, backstory and a bunch of dialogues to read through (not necessarily all of them a good read, perhaps, but at the very least they try and it's better than nothing), vanilla itself does a pretty decent job for a couple of main story related ones, but officers have been widely neglected as far as I know. Which is a shame, as you actually see their random faces and interact with them constantly, much more often than with contacts, as they have a very significant role in the gameplay loop.

I find quite surprising the classic rpg idea of questing around to recruit "followers" hasn't really caught on in Starsector, neither vanilla nor modded. I guess the main turnoff is the fact that once a character is an officer then that's it, they just become an item that gives bonuses to ships, the game really doesn't allow for further interactions with them other than mechanical ones (assigning and leveling according to one ship or the other), so all the story content, dialogues and whatnot would have to happen *before* that, which is kinda constraining. Plus, it could be said that the role of "followers" is kinda taken by the ships themselves, I suppose. Still, everytime I finish the main storyline and then keep sandboxing with my team of random officers with the same face as the next four station administrators, I kinda regret the plot didn't let me, for instance, offer Scylla and Elissa to actually come with my fleet as lieutenants (even if as puny lvl 1 officers with perhaps just some knowledge of sort of vaguely fitting skills like field modulation), while showing all together the finger to Baird.

Oh well, I digress: in any case, thanks again for your work. As you can tell, this is a "little" mod that tends to stick in the mind of the players. Which tells everything there is to say about how well it's written.

13
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Terraforming and Station Construction (v8.4.5)
« on: September 13, 2023, 02:58:26 PM »
Hi guys,

Can anybody tell me if hydroponics has any downsides vs farming except the cost. It takes one less input and produces one more output. Seems OP as ***.

It is OP. Which is probably why it's turned off by default in the settings.

14
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Tahlan Shipworks
« on: September 13, 2023, 01:34:16 PM »
The sniper weapons are definitely overpowered though. The Styrix, for example, does about 25% less DPS than a Gauss but has half the flux cost and a faster projectile. There's a 1200 range HE weapon with 240ish DPS, which is insane since in vanilla the Heavy Mauler has a mediocre 120 DPS and a projectile slow enough to be dodged at max range. Then there are the 1100 range large ballistics, which have comparable DPS and flux stats to the 900 range vanilla ones despite outranging them and being massively more accurate. Sure, you pay for it in OP, but honestly I'd almost always take the Armiger over the Hellbore and the Efreet over the Mark IX even though it costs 8 more OP. Likewise, Styrix vs Gauss is a no-brainer unless you really need that 3 OP or 100 extra kinetic DPS for some reason. And for the Gardas there isn't even an alternative, in vanilla if you want a finisher at that range you need missiles, bombers, or Advanced Optics HIL.

Not that I disagree completely with the point (I said myself range becomes pretty valuable for the larger mounts when there's not much left that can keep up with them), but it seems you are making a bit of confusion here and there. For instance, the 1200 range GH weapons are large mounts, the heavy mauler is a medium one, completely different category. The 1100 large ballistics, Armiger and Efreet, are from this mod but are not GH weapons (they are similarly balanced though to be in the middle between the 1000 and 1200 GH ballistics, so it's pretty ok to talk about them too, but they are supposed to be common vanilla weaponry extensions).

Also, you forget some things where you actually get the weapons to compare right: let's look at the Styrix vs Gauss example.
Same range (1200), the Styrix has 250 DPS at 1.2 efficiency (pretty good efficiency for such long range, but the DPS is kinda closer to some medium mount weaponry damage), while the Gauss has much better DPS, 350, but indeed at a much worse efficiency of 1.7 (that's indeed very bad for the Gauss). However the Styrix also shoots 3 projectiles at 350x3 dmg, while the Gauss does what it does with just one projectile at 700 dmg: that's MUCH more useful when the target shields have gone down and it is now hitting armor. Due to how armor dmg reduction math works, high damage single projectiles are much more effective than multiple lower dmg ones: this means the Gauss, even with the kinetic malus against armor, can still be useful when hitting past the shields, the Styrix not as much (although it's by all means not bad: at that size almost nothing is). The Styrix has a tiny bit of scripted extra secondary energy damage, should be on average about 30x3 (as it's a bit random): helps keeping it closer to the Gauss and its per shot dmg advantage, but it's not much (especially given it's a separate secondary damage calculation, so it should get reduced on its own, meaning it can hardly make much of a difference against heavy armor). Also, the Gauss has perfect accuracy (meaning very low spread for its bullets) while the Styrix is only rated as good. Just put them close together on a ship, and look how the Styrix 3 projectiles spread (which, for what should be a "sniper" weapon, is quite problematic) while the Gauss' stays in the middle, pinpoint accurate: sure, it might be less flux efficient, but not missing that pesky frigate with a costly and precious large weapon shot translates directly into efficiency too! If you simulate a 1v1 versus a Paragon you might not notice the difference, but in the real fleet battles, with all the smaller targets around, the difference is there and it's pretty relevant. Ah, and no, the Styrix doesn't have a faster projectile, both their projectiles have the exact same speed of 1200, so for what concerns that value they have the same chance to hit/not be dodged. Finally, the Gauss has a refire delay more than two times quicker than the Styrix, 2 seconds vs 4.2 seconds, which also helps making it more efficient in actual battle (a missed shot is much less of an issue - and much less infuriating  - the lesser you have to wait for the next shot to come and hopefully kill what you want it to kill... not that the Gauss would miss often anwyay, given the aforementioned advantage in accuracy stats).

Basically, the Styrix is either on par or inferior to the Gauss on everything except for flux efficiency (which indeed is a different case than the smaller gallant-railgun comparisons, where vanilla wins on efficiency too), and it comes at 28 OP cost against 25. Is it a serviceable weapon? No doubt. Given it's a large mount that only consumes 300 flux per second it's certainly a better choice for flux starved ships, even with the higher ordnance cost. If you have flux to spare, though, the Gauss is objectively better on pretty much all accounts (well, except for looks :P ). And yeah, 28 vs 25 OPs might not seem much (and it isn't), but it also brings the Styrix in the same ballpark (30 OPs) as the super Omega weapons (most other mods also put at around 30 OPs their own *** overpowered rare large superweapons, but that's them and let's pretend we don't play with those as well), so an "average" weapon that costs 28 OP might not sound so sexy anymore.
Granted, I do agree this is a case where the tradeoff is more balanced and both vanilla and GH have their uses (I know I'd choose the Styrix for my playership too: I just hate getting overfluxed and I find little fun in having to juggle weapon autofire), but as you could see with the gallant example, some other GH weapons don't fare as good.

Fact is, vanilla has a few unanimously considered premium weapons: the railgun is among those (and it was even when it was 8 OP, why it was lowered to 7 is puzzling to me). Another example would be the burst PD, that has completely dominated small PD mounts for years (other PDs have gotten better in the latest patches though, so nowadays even the previously pointless LRPD laser can have its uses... or so they say  ;) ). That doesn't mean a mod has to have its own custom PDs at least on par with the vanilla burst PD, otherwise we'd fall to power creep in an instant and just contribute at making other PD weapons completely useless. But it should offer something that makes it not useless as well when compared to the burst PD. You know, the usual: more range, better flux, lower OP cost or maybe it can have some trick up its sleeve, like AOE damage that makes it better against swarms although still losing badly to the burst when put against individual sturdier fighters. The Styrix - Gauss comparison could be considered such a case, where yeah, the Styrix ain't useless compared to the Gauss, as it has one definite advantage (efficiency) even though its losing on lots of other stats. Other GH weapons are not so lucky.

And, in any case, it can feel kinda bad when a weapon that's not better than the vanilla equivalent still costs noticeably more. You expect premium, but you don't really get that, you get a sidegrade at best and more headaches when trying to fit that last hullmod in instead. Not surprising then to read people like Selfcontrol yesterday mentioning they don't use them because they can't justify their cost. This might sound irrational, but - to still take the same example as before - even if we were all to agree the Styrix is fine as it is balance wise, I'd then probably prefer to see it nerfed slightly, just to put it at 25 OPs as well.* Nothing really would change balance wise, but it would instinctively feel better as user experience: the price is the same, you expect a sidegrade, you get a sidegrade.
* Personally, I do think it could very well already cost 25 OPs without the need to nerf it in the slightest, but heh, you get the point.

15
Mods / Re: [0.96a] Tahlan Shipworks
« on: September 13, 2023, 12:18:41 AM »
I actually think GH weapons are fine they just generate flux like absolutely mad

Well, many are all around a bit weaker than their vanilla equivalent (or roughly on par but at a higher OP cost). For instance, looking at the kinetic weapons (from memory, so take the numbers with a grain of salt but you'll get the idea), a comparison between the vanilla railgun and the GH gallant, which have basically the same role and behaviour. The gallant has 100 more range than the railgun (800 vs 700), which is good but... that's about all it has over it. Railgun dps is 167 vs the gallant's 125 (that's quite a big difference), but the railgun is also much more flux efficient (0.9 vs 1.1: and for a kinetic weapon, being in the negative in flux efficiency is kinda bad); it doesn't stop there though: the gallant has only medium accuracy and turn rate as a turret, while the railgun has perfect accuracy and turns quite fast, making it much better against frigates and fast destroyers (and, arguably, small mounts are usually meant just for such targets). Also, single shot is 100 dmg for both, the dps advantage for the railgun comes from a faster refire rate (0.6 vs 0.8 iirc): faster refire rate is pretty relevant in being efficient at not wasting flux in percentage of missed shots. Finally, all this while they cost the same OPs, as the railgun isn't 8 OPs anymore, it was brought back to 7 just before 0.96. Honestly, if it wasn't for faction flavor, there wouldn't be a single scenario where I'd choose a stock gallant over a railgun nowadays.

The bigger variants tend to scale roughly following this pattern, as does the HE set, although they usually have a secondary scripted damage that makes things slighty more even when compared to their vanilla counterparts (scripted damage is mentioned, but not taken into account by the game when calculating dps, flux efficiency etc in the tooltip stat summary). However, they also tend to cost about 1-2 more OPs than them. A medium weapon at 14-15 OPs, for instance, is getting in the Omega weapon ordnance cost ballpark: it should probably pack a bit more punch. Granted, the range advantage of the "sniper" GH weaponry becomes more impactful with the bigger hardpoints: 800 vs 700 range makes little difference in a crowded battlefield, when there's still many weapons with range higher than 800, 1100 (for the mediums) or 1200 (for the large ones) can't be seriously matched by most things in vanilla, so unless you have other mods with long range weaponry, they can let you dominate the field by being a kiting nightmare (as in my Ristreza example). Still, it seems to come at a very harsh compromise on just everything else.

Which is why, as I mentioned, in my game I made several of them a bit more flux efficient, usually by 0.1 (and I may have slightly increased the projectile speed of a couple of them that were simply way too wasteful), bringing for instance the gallant to 1 efficiency from 1.1. It's still arguably underperforming compared to the railgun (and probably to the light needler too with its 0.8 efficiency, but I've almost never used needlers 'cause I don't like their sprite so I'm actually not that familiar with how they feel performance wise), but not so egregiously that I feel like I'm seriously handicapping myself for no reason when I put them on my ships. A bunch of vanilla weapons were made a bit better inbetween late 0.95.1a and 0.96 (for instance, PD weaponry is quite more balanced nowadays, which also puts some shadows on the flux hungry GH PD solutions), and some modded weaponry is now lacking behind a bit imo. Modders should be very careful about correcting that to avoid power creep (and Nia has always been rather cautious and conservative in stats, which is good), but I do feel like the GH weapons could do with a little balance pass to make them more attractive.

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