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Messages - Cathair

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Mods / Re: [0.95.1a] QoL Pack 1.0
« on: January 08, 2022, 03:58:42 PM »
Already works with phase need to add it to post

Eeeexcellent, thanks!

Mods / Re: [0.95.1a] QoL Pack 1.0
« on: January 07, 2022, 10:40:18 AM »
I didn't understand what "Shield Auto Deploy" was going to be until reading the description- holy guacamole, input queuing in Starsector? I've wanted this for so long! That half-second after a vent or something where it looks like you can deploy, but instead your input is ignored and you eat a Harpoon while trying to figure out if your shield is deploying or not, is still the bane of my existence.

Could you (eventually) make this apply to phase as well, please? Or does it already?

Modding / Re: nutella jar rebalance mod
« on: August 29, 2021, 01:50:02 AM »
While I enjoy mods like Big Mags, I sometimes feel like that style of s***posting is too... refined, too obviously delineated. But this, this is earnest, classic s***posting. Good jorb.

Blog Posts / Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« on: July 02, 2021, 11:08:23 PM »
That's a really interesting way to look at it! And a neat categorization/split. But, does it actually hold up? If we consider "making a ship the best it can be" to mean "if you take it and put into a fleet without the same commander skills, it'll still be better" then I think Special Modifications is literally the only skill that fits the bill. I'm having a hard time seeing how one could come up with a reasonable definition of this that would somehow make skills liks Crew Training, Carrier Group, Fighter Uplink, Flux Regulation, and Phase Corps qualitatively different.

I *think* the way you're thinking about this might be largely driven by the existence of Special Modifications and where it currently is.

Hmmm. I admit, skills like Weapon Drills or Carrier Group could be made Technology skills, and Electronic Warfare could be made a Leadership skill, with nothing but a change of flavor text. They aren't qualitatively different. However, most of these skills have an additional component that seems to fit a common theme for their tree- like Wolfpack Tactics' damage bonus being conditional on such a high level of abstraction that it seems easier to explain as the result of crew tactics, rather than an immutable property of the machine; or Phase Corps having a flux generation reduction that seems more like a product of per-ship tweaking than something a crew could do with sheer operational skill.

I think the way I look at this is driven by the trees in 0.8 and 0.9, where Tech was "where you go for more vents, caps, and ordnance points"- the stuff that would make ships better even without the same commander skills, as you say. While 0.9.5 has made the distinction muddier, to me it felt like it maintained the same spirit, with Special Modifications being the prime example. It's less that my biases were formed by Special Modifications, and more that Special Modifications being where it is reinforced my existing bias from years of playing the older versions.

I'm not saying that redefining the trees by a more strictly game-mechanics-driven meta-organization is wrong or anything, I just don't like it as much as what we're used to. I suspect that Technology will still be the player's first stop if they want to make their ships into hotrods (now that I'm thinking about it, will Tech still have a +10/10 vents/caps skill?), and having the ultimate hotrod skill in a different tree, one that feels less focused on this kind of tweaking, seems pretty weird when you're not looking at it in relation to the whole design philosophy.

But in general, the idea is that you *are* mostly using officer'ed ships, with non-officered ones thrown in for special purposes. So it's less of a band-aid for and issue an more just things working as intended.

(Yes, I'm probably trying to have my cake and eat it too, here - "you can use unofficered ships!" and "it's fine if they aren't any good". Uh, sorry.)

Well, that's kinda what I was getting at, trying to determine just how much officerless ships are supposed to be worth. "Speedbump" may be overly dismissive, but what I mean is, I find them good only for delaying the enemy while my "real" ships finish whatever else they're doing, and they often get chewed up while doing so. I do use some un-officered ships out of necessity (not just Omens, haha), but the few times I've been desperate enough to expect them to actually kill anything, it's been pretty rough.

That's fine if it's supposed to be this way, but with the sheer number of enemies (in the case of high-end bounties) or overpowered officer swarms (in the case of Remnants) we can get thrown at us now, it leads to wondering whether I'm supposed to be getting more help from them than I am. And when there's a single option to make the support fodder actually effective at being support fodder, it seems like the kind of thing that I'll either always take, or else learn to cope without and never take, in favor of other top-tiers that open up new playstyles instead of salvaging questionable existing mechanics.

One other thing that I dislike about the current officer dominance is how it gravitates naturally toward running multiple capital ships. It seems like everyone who's serious about getting things done in "endgame" is running three or four or more, and it makes sense as the objective best choice for maximizing your gain from each limited officer slot, while still having some left over for Wolfpack Tactics frigates or whatever. I like a capital anchor or two but I prefer smaller ships, and I'm only hampering myself with that idiosyncrasy. Is it okay to need a top-tier skill just to effectively go wide instead of tall? I don't know.

Hmm, I think what you're saying you'd want to use Neural Link for is the sort of micromanagement that I super don't want it to be used for :) Like, if we're not careful with it, it becomes a "cycle through your ships and tell them to vent" sort of skill and that doesn't sound like much fun.

Ah, I should've noted in my hypothetical rework that I'm fine with the limited target numbers as stated. As a player, I like having micro options a lot more than you do as a designer, but even so, feeling like I'm not getting the most out of my fleet if I'm not giving myself whiplash seems exhausting. I'm okay with switching between two, or at most, three ships.

When I wrote that about getting ships out of trouble, I had missed the part where the switching requires a hullmod (not sure how, not like it wasn't clear), and was under the impression that you would just select any officer-less ship on the field, but wouldn't be able to make a third ship switchable after making your choice for that engagement. So my thoughts about wanting to micromanage officered ships with it don't make much sense; there wouldn't be much reason to keep an officer in a ship that you're modding for this beforehand.

Hah! I need to play more of that game. Just couldn't get into it using a mouse, though...

It's comfortable to play on a gamepad, but my ability to aim with a thumbstick has deteriorated so much since the old days of Xbox Halo that even with aim assist, I end up falling back to the mouse for the harder challenges. :P

Blog Posts / Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« on: July 02, 2021, 04:11:14 PM »
Initial opinions that are burning a hole in my head:

 - The only one of these changes that I disagree strongly with is putting the third S-mod in the Leadership tree. I get your reasoning, but it's pretty different from what I've come to expect from these trees. It may sound a bit arrogant to tell you what your own game's themes are, but FWIW, the impressions stuck in my head from previous iterations are that Leadership is about being the best at using whatever you've got, while Technology is more about making what you've got the best it can be. The latter is often my first priority; I usually want my individual ships to be as mechanically tricked out as possible. So, anytime I'm going deep into Technology, I will always want that third S-mod. I don't mind putting a few points into Leadership for good officers (gonna need respectable pilots who can handle my beast machines, after all!), but having to max it for the S-mod doesn't fit the ethos I'm after at all.

 - Support Doctrine being where it is seems questionable to me unless there are changes coming to substantially reduce the power of high-end officers. As lots of other people have been saying in this iteration, unless an officer-less ship has some strong inherent gimmick (thinking of the support Omens I run, here), it's a disposable speedbump in high-end combat. So unless it's an intentional balance decision that we should avoid using un-officered ships without this skill, I would consider it a band-aid for the issue. I can deal with having a mandatory band-aid skill, but putting at the top of a tree feels unrewarding, and irritating to build around.

 - Neural Link seems very gimmicky. I would typically want to use a skill like this defensively more than offensively- I don't want the AI potentially wasting missiles or whatever that I had planned for a particular purpose, during the times when I need to switch to the other ship. But limiting it to non-officered ships nixes most of its defensive potential, that of repositioning your most important ships to get them out of trouble, since anything really important is going to have an officer in it. It does seem like a great opportunity to make use of ships I wouldn't normally consider fast enough to work as a flagship, and bouncing between two capital ships could be strong as hell. I don't know, the biggest problem I have with it is that it feels, in light of my aforementioned biases, like it's in the wrong tree. It's a skill that's all about making you better at using a ship, instead of making the ship better for you to use- and yes, I'm skimming over the skill bonuses because they seem like a side benefit at best. One more "officered" ship but you can't choose the personality; that doesn't sound like the pinnacle of mechanical engineering. Meanwhile, the skill that literally is the pinnacle of mechanical engineering is over in Leadership.

Hear me out: Replace Best of the Best with a skill called "Neuro-linked Coordination" or something, which combines Neural Link's switching with BotB's deployment bonus. Ditch the application of the player's Combat skills to switched ships, and make switching apply only to officered (or AI-cored) ships. Now you have a command buff combined with the ultimate expression of fleet control, requiring the ultimate in intimacy and trust with your officers. That seems a lot more appropriate to me, both mechanically and thematically. It also neatly solves the issue of too much synergy in the same tree.

And clearly has nothing at all to do with how much the ability reminds me of mind-jacking your Executors in House of the Dying Sun, no sir. :P

 - S-mods making ships recoverable sounds really cool. Maybe too soft on the player for some tastes, but I like it as another potential help for the issues with non-officered ships. I'm usually loathe to "waste" story points on S-modding ships that aren't my best, but if I get more bang for my buck in the form of this guaranteed recovery, that gives me more options for building and fielding stuff I normally wouldn't bother with.

 - Nothing but optimism for the Industry top-tier changes. Hull Restoration seems well worth going five deep in Industry for the technical elitist player, and I completely agree with your reasoning on Derelict Operations. It seems like it could still be very powerful, or even overpowered depending on exact numbers, while offering a playstyle that's a lot more unique than Derelict Contingent.

Blog Posts / Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« on: July 02, 2021, 02:10:59 PM »
Derelict Operations only affecting ships with officers seems weird. You're looking to to run a fleet of trashy junk ships... and then you need to make sure they all have officers?

The blogpost didn't mention anything about officers in the section about Derelict Operations, so assuming it's gonna work that way based on the current Derelict Contingent may or may not be accurate. vOv

Is this just a ship pack atm, still not as playable faction right?
Also the ships feel kinda weak, do they have some good special powers or hull mods?
If the heavy hitter is 4 capitals with bad rear coverage, how is it any better from an onslaught :). Not saying it has to, but other High Tech capitals have better coverage and more firepower , compared to vanidad. has Temporal Shell. On a capital ship.

In my very brief testing it does seem to run pretty hot, but you can probably get up to some serious business with this thing.

Mods / Re: [0.95a] Rebalanced Doom 1.0
« on: May 18, 2021, 04:55:37 PM »
I've been using this for the past week, and I consider it a new staple. I think it's pretty balanced- I find that I can still do a little more with a Doom than I can with a capital of higher DP cost, but it takes investment and some thought. Seems about right. Also, your videos were interesting to watch, so thanks for that.

However, I've been wondering if you'd be willing to release your source code so we can putz around with range values ourselves. I've gone from hesitant about the range at first sight, to accepting once I actually played it, to a little chafed by it after a while. I want to stress that this is strictly a comfort and gameplay flow issue; it doesn't need to be any better from a balance perspective. My points of contention are:

- with the Doom needing to be in normal weapons range to use its mines, I often find them redundant. The way you use it in your video on overloaded targets with a high-alpha AMB loadout looks great, but when I'm doing the same, it seems just as effective to pop into phase to keep flux down and quickly get a second salvo off, rather than spend that flux on mines that might get shot down or evaded. Using them to exploit AI shield management is still alive and well, but at close range and especially with allied support, I'd often rather force an overload on the shield than bypass it. I feel like giving some range back would make the mines more distinct as a weapon, at the cost of being objectively overpowered and exploitable.

- friendly AI Dooms seem hardest hit by the change, because they don't know how to manage the AoE, or their own flux. Doom fleets have always been kinda no-chill towards friendly frigates, but now they seem to be cracking their own armor a lot more. I don't notice it much on enemy Dooms, since they have a shorter lifespan in the first place, and don't have to worry about post-battle repairs. It makes all-phase or majority-phase fleets kind of a meme, I think. And maybe they should be, but eh, I'd like to have it as a viable option.

So, I'd like the option to have a just little cheese, as a treat. But I don't want to go back to Dooms dropping mines from phase, which I think is the most important balance change here, for both enemies and the player. Enemy Dooms being able to flee in phase while insta-dropping whole stacks of mines on the frigates fast enough to pursue them is insane, and so is the player being able to deploy artillery from complete safety.

Mods / Re: [0.95a] Console Commands v2021.04.10
« on: April 19, 2021, 10:12:48 AM »
Having an issue with officer respeccing under Officer Management: level 6 officers that have been respecced can only level back up to 5.

General Discussion / Re: 0.95- First Impressions
« on: March 27, 2021, 10:50:31 PM »
Pirate base bounties are also too far nerfed IMO, 30-40k is not enough, I think a similarly difficult fight against ships would pay 2-3 times as much. Maybe 60k tier 1, 90k tier 2, 120k tier 3.

Yeah, I noticed this too. To give a frame of reference, I'm running a pretty unfocused ragtag fleet of a couple cruisers, three combat destroyers plus a couple mules, some high-tech frigates, and assorted logistics. I just completed two ~150k bounties consisting of multiple cruisers and destroyers; the second one was a bit rough but I didn't lose anything permanently.

Meanwhile, there's a pirate base bounty available at 40k, when I'm pretty sure this fleet would get rekt by even a T1 station.

Announcements / Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« on: October 16, 2020, 02:28:45 PM »
oh god it's finally happening. I'M VERY EXCITED NOW.

It's surprising, and cool, to see so many modding additions in a patch that already has so much on its plate with reworking base game systems.

Mods / Re: [0.9.1a] Ship/Weapon Pack 1.11.0
« on: July 28, 2020, 02:53:56 PM »
I'm not sure how I feel about the new vindicator, I really liked its kind of angular design. The new Chronos is an absolute upgrade though, it looked really silly before.

The Vulture is also a huge improvement. Agreed on the Vindicator, but the new sprite is a good one taken on its own merits.

It's really cool to see some of the dodgier sprites in here getting some love. Thanks, authors.

Mods / Re: [0.9.1a] Kingdom of Terra (v0.14) - Capital Update
« on: October 28, 2019, 08:57:38 PM »
Capital ship update is here!

You gotta be kiddin' me. I didn't know SS could do fully dynamic module movement! What a rad thing to make.

Suggestions / Re: Split escort orders
« on: July 12, 2019, 10:13:31 PM »
Well, this pretty much sums up everything we were talking/complaining about in the Discord. Can't think of much else to add, in the way of broad topics. Thanks, Histidine!

The unintentional complexity created by having to work around things intended to reduce complexity in SS's whole AI command aspect is my biggest pet peeve about the entire game, has been for years. I really like this idea of expandable menus of some sort, to keep the current standard of low information intrusiveness and straightforward default commands, but allowing more granularity for players that go looking for it. What Histidine brought up here, about having better control over right-click attack orders, is a good example that I hadn't thought much about. Instead of having to jump through hoops of what to assign first via which set of buttons, just let me pick the behavior I want to assign.

Splitting up escort orders into at least one or two more degrees of aggression/vigilance is of particular concern though, because right now, micromanaging Defend orders is the only reliable way to keep your ships from getting divided and conquered when not fighting directly on a capture point. Would be nice to have better ways of keeping ships together on the move.

The "previous version's escort behavior" is, sadly, a combination of multiple bugs and confirmation bias on the part of players observing it; as such it can't really be reproduced (and wouldn't be good/reliable if it could be).
Huh, that's interesting to know! Ah well, a "be a meat shield for this ship" order was nice, but pretty niche.

Been thinking about cleaning up the escort orders; it feels very much like a "select and right-click" type of situation. Probably one version of the escort command - that gets a bit more weight for larger ships - would do the job. As you say, Heavy just clutters things up, and so does medium, really.
This is good to hear. In my experience, the AI usually makes profoundly terrible choices if allowed to choose escort ships on its own. Especially if you use these commands mid-battle; it'll often assign an escort that's currently halfway across the map from the target ship, because that's gonna help. So as someone who relies on manual right-click escort assignment, I can understand the need to have an automatic escort button at all, for circumstances like newer players who aren't sure what ships they should assign where. But having a whole set of redundant orders that most players aren't even gonna use is... yeah.

Mods / Re: [0.9a] Trailer Moments 0.4a - projectile trails for vanilla
« on: November 28, 2018, 07:23:12 PM »
I like this a lot. Thanks!

As the standards for mod art have risen higher and higher, vanilla projectiles in particular have started to look pretty boring by comparison, in my opinion. This helps change that.

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