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Topics - TrashMan

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Modding / State of STEELCLADS
« on: December 07, 2019, 05:29:47 AM »
Just a quick heads-up to people who are wondering about the status of Steelclad - it is not in development anymore.
Now before anyone jumps to conclusions and starts thinking Harmful Mechanics antics are the reason - nope, don't pester the guy.
Replacing 2-3 weapons sprites is hardly a setback.

The real reason is that I'm an obsessive-cumpulsive modder with the attention span of a goldfish. I modded pretty much any game I played, and given that I've been at this modding business for well over 20 years, you can imagine the number. EV Nova, Baldurs Gate series, Morrowind, Oblivion, Skyrim, Freespace series, X3, Xenonauts, X-com, Space Wolves, Dawn of War, Freelancer, Dominions series, Fallen Empires, C&C, Wesnoth, Sword of the Stars to name just a few that have completed mods. I even worked on some full-fledged games. The number of unfinished mods stuck in eternal limbo or lost to drive crashes and accidental deletions is far greater.
Because of this it is rare for me to stick with modding any game for long. Those that followed my activity can see that I pretty much disappear and then pop back up for a while when a new update comes out and the game catches my attention again. It is a testament to Starsector that I came back so many times as I did, very few games ever manage that.
Either way, being that I'm an old fart with things happening in RL, you can image how my interest is waning. Lately maintaining this has become more of a chore than passion.

As for what the future holds, when I took over from Okim he said he was fine with anyone taking over, since he wouldn't want the mod to die. I feel the same, so if anyone wants to work with it, you have both of our blessings.
I am reasonably satisfied with the state of the mod, since it's stable and functional, despite not having everything I wanted in it yet.
I'm going to put in some extra files and unfinished scripts up as a separate zip just in case.

That said, a final disclaimer, a basic rule I had since I started modding: any and all assets of mine are free to be be used in any shape or form by anyone, no credits necessary. I firmly believe that this is always the best for any community, as I've been a part of MANY modding communities and tribalism, backstabbing, pointless drama and trying to hog exclusive content brought many projects and teams down.

There is a small chance that I might return; best case scenario when the next major update drops or the game is finished - but that is assuming I have time then and something else doesn't catch my attention.
Anyway, I had great fun with this game and discussing things with you guys. You might see me around occasionally.

Modding / Java Bounty Board
« on: October 23, 2019, 04:24:24 AM »
I bet that quite a few modders here have a very minimal understanding of java, and some don't have time to spare to learn it (like me).
Since asking people to code for you from the kindness of their heart seem cheap (and not likely to get any results either), the idea of a bounty board comes to mind.

It is simple - outline what you desire and whoever delivers it gets rewarded (trough paypal, steam credit or whatever compensation ones agrees upon)

I'm curious - would people be interested? Would coders be willing to participate?

Suggestions / Suggestion regarding the weapons doe/methods
« on: October 18, 2019, 01:23:45 AM »
It's rather simple - there should be more methods/function when making hullmods/shipsystems.

the current methods are lacking in granularity. I can change/buff all energy weapon, I can change/buff all PD weapons. But it's not enough.
MutableShipStatsAPI should be expanded to cover all bases

For example, if I want to make a hullmod that buffs small energy weapons? No luck.

Selection by SIZE, by TYPE and a combination. Perhaps by damage type of weapon too?



Modding / Need advice, re-working ships
« on: October 18, 2019, 01:12:46 AM »
I've had multiple people complain about lack of shading (pretty much all ships) and some sprite quality for Steelclads (mainly the PNS, which is a product of different mish-mash of methods). I have though about addressing it, but the sheer number of images I'd have to go over make this...unfeasable. There are 260+ images in the ships graphics folder (some are glowmaps) and with my limited time, there is absolutely no way I can get it done in any reasonable timeframe.

question is - should I even try? Do people here think SC ships need to be re-worked? And if so, would anyone be willing to lend a hand?

General Discussion / Small ships, battle sizes, fleet limits
« on: October 11, 2019, 01:36:31 AM »
The biggest problem with smaller ships is they are meant to be used in wolf pack tactics.
But due to fleet limit being a number of ship, not point, it is a terrible strategy.

The other problem is how the battles are fought. Small ships excel at flaking, but due to the size of the battlefield and number of ship deployed, this many not work well.

Increasing the size of the battlefield may have both performance and practical issues (slow ships take forever to get anywhere).
But would it be possible to make it work..with something like a dynamic battlefield - as in, there is no fixed size, no "borders".

But how would ships retreat then?
By using distance from the center of action (or control points, or flagship) and the enemy. If you move a certain distance away, with no enemies in the direction you are moving, you can escape.

But what about big, slow ships? They can't outrun frigates.
Perhaps the solution would be an escape drive. Something that can be charged (for a minute or so) and woks as a constant burn drive?

There are just random ideas, but I want to hear what people think. How to make small ships viable and useful?

General Discussion / Ship classes balance
« on: August 31, 2019, 09:18:23 AM »
Is it just me or does it seem off?
Capitals are a must, smaller ships cannot compare unless they have a cheap gimmick like phasing, teleporting/time manipulation. This is for two reasons:

1) Capital ship range. Big ships have longer weapon range. The Targeting modules have a greater increase for larger ships. This seems wrong to me. Why would range be determined by ship size, rather than specific weapon?
Should range be completely weapon specific, with larger weapons having more range and the Targeting modules having a fixed weapon increase? That way, a smaller ship with a large mount would have the same range as a capital ship.

2) Big ship mobility modules. Some have them and are a pain in he ass to deal with. Your small ships start getting damaged before they get into range, and they can't retreat fast enough. Mods make this even worse, as a lot of them have such modules. For vanilla, remnant ships are a prime example of cheese. Smaller ships are a walking coffin if brought against them (Radiant being the most cheese, being able to teleport into your formation, blast a frigate/destroyer to bits and teleport out).

Smaller ships simply do not have the shield and armor to stand against capitals and increased range and capital mobility simply make it worse. Just look at the best small ships the player regularly use. They all have such "get out of trouble for free" card gimicks

General Discussion / Trading and relationships
« on: August 28, 2019, 01:17:26 PM »
Big trades with a faction= +1 relation
Trade with their enemy = -4 relation

WTF??? Who though his was good or sensible in any way? This is regular trade, not an embargo run.
It makes no sense for factions to become hostile for trading.

General Discussion / Repair speed
« on: August 28, 2019, 12:48:12 PM »
Isn't it way too fast? Colony buildings/stations take months to repair, but the entire players fleet can be repaired in-space almost instantly.

Kinda reduces the impact of battle and makes is seem trivial. Also instant repairs on planets. There should be time passing, right now it's abuseable if you fight near friendly worlds - just burn to it, full repair, get back into battle.

General Discussion / Ship costs and availability
« on: August 23, 2019, 04:51:36 AM »
I can't shake the impression that's it's all fubar.
It's far too easy to get rare ships from markets - no need for comissions. The black market and even the regular market have an absurd selection of high-end ships. Ships in general are far too cheap, and ship restoration far too expensive.

Currently gameplay seems exactly the opposite of what it should be.
Instead of salvaging ships, it's easier and cheaper to buy a new one, which goes against all common sense. Ships are expensive. They should be, and obnoxiously so. You could easily quadripple the price of ships.

Salvaging a ship and repairing it (not restoring, just repairing), then selling it should net you some profit.

Suggestions / Usefull Additions to the game
« on: June 04, 2019, 03:07:32 AM »
MutableShipStats additions that cover a few more cases - like mount size bonuses/penalties (for example, if you want to boost only small weapons), only PD weapons and such

Damage Falloff/Bonus with distance function. I guess this could be handled via a custom script for a weapon projectile? But would it work for beams?

Fighter sizes - basically, wing_data.cvs gets a new column, size/volume/space that indicates just how big it is. (1- small fighter, 2-normal fighter, 3-large fighter/fighter-bomber, 4-bomber, 5-large bomber, 5+ = superbomber/gunship)
Ship would get their own value for their hangars.
This means that regardless of ordinance points, you can limit some fighter/bomber wings from being equipped on specific ships. So you'd need a big ship with a big hangar and big hangar doors to carry those super-bombers that are almost a frigate onto themselves.

General Discussion / Frustration abound
« on: May 30, 2019, 03:44:35 AM »
It seems that events and bounties are 99% of the time out-of-balance with my capabilities.

120000-200000 bounties of nothing but mass carriers, or battleships that I simply cannot deal with without losses. (and expensive D-mod removals)

The real kicker is that System Explore quest, where you find that ancient cruiser? First time I did it I won against the defending drones, then a MASSIVE pirate fleet does the *teleports behind you* "nothing personel kid!" schtick and there's no winning there.

So after a few updates I started a new game. This time I came a bit better prepared. A huge missile-bus ship, a HEAVY carrier cruiser(5 wings), 4 destroyers and several heavy frigates. This time the defenders have a DRONE BATTLESHIP. WTF? Does this scale with my fleet or something? A battleship defending a cruiser??? And that thing is NASTY, spews endless missiles and does not come alone ... hordes of heavy drones in tow. Simply winning with a single ship left is a challenge, and then come the pirates....

This is just getting frustrating

Bug Reports & Support (modded) / Strange Error
« on: May 28, 2019, 07:22:59 AM »
Got this when engaging one bounty fleet.
It is a modded faction fleet, but the faction and the ship worked normally.

870530 [Thread-4] ERROR com.fs.starfarer.combat.CombatMain  - java.lang.NoSuchMethodError: com.fs.starfarer.api.combat.CombatEngineAPI.isEnemyInFullRetreat()Z
java.lang.NoSuchMethodError: com.fs.starfarer.api.combat.CombatEngineAPI.isEnemyInFullRetreat()Z
at starship_legends.CombatPlugin.advance(
at com.fs.starfarer.title.ooOO.o0oO$Oo.super(Unknown Source)
at Source)
at com.fs.starfarer.combat.CombatEngine.advanceInner(Unknown Source)
at com.fs.starfarer.combat.CombatEngine.advance(Unknown Source)
at com.fs.starfarer.combat.CombatState.traverse(Unknown Source)
at com.fs.state.AppDriver.begin(Unknown Source)
at com.fs.starfarer.combat.CombatMain.main(Unknown Source)
at com.fs.starfarer.StarfarerLauncher$ Source)
at Source)
0    [main] INFO  com.fs.starfarer.StarfarerLauncher  - Starting Starsector 0.9.1a-RC6 launcher
0    [main] INFO  com.fs.starfarer.StarfarerLauncher  - Running in D:\Games\Starsector0.91\starsector-core
0    [main] INFO  com.fs.starfarer.StarfarerLauncher  - OS: Windows 8.1 6.3
0    [main] INFO  com.fs.starfarer.StarfarerLauncher  - Java version: 1.7.0_79 (64-bit)

General Discussion / Faction hostilities
« on: May 22, 2019, 01:52:22 AM »
Are they random? It seems wars are declared randomly.

I've seen factions declare war against Independtants.
I also seen factions go to war against factions set up to be friendly at game start (for example, I have a Free Traders Guild faction that is set to start with 0.5-0.7 relation with everyone, and it soon gets attacked).

General Discussion / Colony sizes ad industry limits make no sense
« on: May 16, 2019, 04:47:18 AM »
This needs some serious overhaul.

The simplest way I can think off (that wont' require massive code re-writes) is to simply modify the scale/measuring of colony size.
Right now Colony Size is an exponential measure of population - Size 1 is 1^10 = 10 people, size 10 is 10^10 = 10 billion people.
The range is far too big and makes no damn sense.
Size 1 colony can have 1 industry, but sizes 7-10 can have 4?
So 10 people are enough to operate an industry, but there's no difference if you have 1 billion or 10 billion? Makes no damn sense. Makes no damn sense why would you even have colonies that small.
Anything below 1 million people would not even be worth visiting for a trader.

So re-working the scale so that:
Size 1 - 1-2 million
Size 2 - between 2 and 5 million
Size 3 - between 5 and 10 million
Size 4 - between 10 and 50 million
Size 6 - between 50 and 100 million
Size 7 - between 100 and 500 million
Size 8 - between 500 mil and 1 billion
Size 9 - between 1 and 5 billion
Size 10 - between 5 and 10 billion

Stations work differently, they are trading hubs so their populations doesn't matter as much. (or alternatively, they have their own separate population scale that goes from hunderds to a million tops). That, and they would be limited to 1 or 2 industries anyway due to size

But what about starting new player colonies? They would be size 0 for a while and no faction would care until they reach size 1.
Would be nice to have ACTUAL population numbers. The smaller the colony, the faster it grows

Suggestions / Mission/battle variety?
« on: May 13, 2019, 01:33:17 AM »
A thought occurred to me - would it be possible to trigger specific battles/missions, with specific objectives and multiple sides?
Not sure if this goes into modding question because it's applicable to everything.

I am also thinking of factions giving you some more specific missions (with comissions), like:
- protect ship X (allied) against enemies (battle in progress)
- escort fleet/convoy to destination
- Infiltration (bring X marines to specific planet)

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