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Starsector 0.95a is out! (03/26/21); Blog post: Skill Changes, Part 2 (07/15/21)

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Topics - sotanaht

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General Discussion / Beam weapons need a buff
« on: April 06, 2021, 05:22:14 PM »
Not Tachyon Lance, that thing is powerful enough.

Every other beam weapon though, particularly Tactical Lasers and Graviton Beams, ESPECIALLY Gravitons, simply don't do enough damage.  I realize that they can function for zoning AI, but considering how weak they are that seems more like an exploit/bug than a proper feature.  If the AI were smart, it would simply ignore those beams completely.   Even without shields, Tactical Lasers aren't really a threat, even focusing several on a frigate can take upwards of 10 continuous seconds to kill.  Gravitons are even worse, since they practically only do "damage" to shields, and that damage is so low it would be negligible as a small mount at half the cost.

I've been testing with (most) beams modified for 2x to 3x damage and they still feel kind of weak, but once in a while they can actually hurt something so maybe that's good enough.  As a mechanic soft flux is so much less effective that I think it deserves to be much more efficient in terms of cost to fire, and this sort of multiplier seems to work alright.

Edit: For the most part I don't actually use beam weapons on my own ships, except the Tachyons.  My testing mostly consists of seeing what it feels like to go up against beam-heavy enemy fleets.  Without changes, they are so pathetic I actually feel sorry for them.

General Discussion / High tech stations losing shields in autobattle
« on: September 01, 2019, 01:31:53 PM »
Normally, a High Tech station's shield emitters are protected behind the actual base modules.  You have to overload the shield AND kill at least one module before you can reach the emitter, and the AI never actually bothers trying to do that.  When a high tech station gets damaged in auto battle though, often the first things to go before even any of the modules is the shield emitter, so if you come defend the station after it's done a little fighting on its own, you end up defending a mostly defenseless station, which is pretty unfair. High Tech's only real advantage is shields, so losing the shields first in autocalc is extremely unfair.

Currently I think station balance could do with some adjusting.  Midline is the best by far, only maybe having a fully-intact High-Tech fortress to compete with.  The spin speed makes it nearly impossible for the AI to focus down modules, plus it has more shields than low tech to start with, so while it might lack a little firepower it more than makes up for that in defense.  Low tech's flimsy shields and lack of gimmicks leaves it pretty much useless, and High-tech is only good if in 100% pristine condition.

General Discussion / Fun with missile spam
« on: April 30, 2015, 01:34:59 PM »
Just having some fun with the multitude of faction mods and wanted to show off what some of the added LRMs can do.  This is 3 Monoliths (Citadel) equipped with Heavy Ballista Launchers (Intersteller Imperium) and
Kestros MIRV pods (Exegency).  Testing against a Templar Archbishop (using a Martyr as a glorified camera ship).

There is no overkill.

General Discussion / "Combat" carriers with no "carrier" tag
« on: April 02, 2015, 11:14:08 AM »
A trend I'm pretty sure started in the base game with the Venture, most moderately-armed carriers lack the "Carrier" help tag.  This means that they cannot be given carrier waypoints, they charge into battle whether you want them to or not, and any mod functions that rely on the tag (expanded flight decks from SS+) don't work.

While the trend started with the base game, it can be found in most mod fleets.

In my opinion, Carriers should ALWAYS tend towards the edge of combat.  Heavily armed carriers can attempt to fight from the fringes, but no carrier should ever be in the middle of the fighting.  I personally want better armed carriers even at the edges so that they are better able to fight off any ships that come their way, while still not attempting to persue and risk their precious flight decks.

General Discussion / Talk about command points
« on: March 23, 2015, 07:48:16 AM »
Even with no skill investment, I always seem to have a surplus of command points in every battle.  All battle objectives grant bonus CP and due to the hands-off nature of the tactics system you probably never need to give more than 3 or 4 orders in an entire fight.

This especially makes the advanced tactics skill useless beyond the marine effectiveness bonus (which isn't very useful either), and it makes com relays not worth taking at all.

At this point I think complaining about the hands-off command approach is unlikely to do much good.  At the very least though Com relays need to grant some kind of bonus other than just +3cp, just to make capturing them interesting.

Or maybe I'm wrong and people give a LOT more orders in their playstyle?  I've generally found the most effective thing to do is to place a couple of capture orders on the objectives that actually benefit me (nav becons are especially good), an attack order on an objective where I want the fighting to happen to keep my ships from spreading out too much, and then never issuing another order unless I desperately need to retreat a ship or intercept (which never works anyway).  Maybe one or two more orders if I'm using carriers and fighters, but that's about it.

Suggestions / Capture too RNG, suggestions.
« on: March 17, 2015, 06:23:29 PM »
I'm sure it's already been talked about to death, from what I've read SS+ increases the chances and I've read some rumbling that the system might be due an overhaul.  Since I'm new though and ship capture has been my number 1 gripe about the currently implemented content, I wanted to detail some of my thoughts on improving the system WITHOUT simply increasing RNG chances.

As it currently exists in game, in order to capture a ship you need to
  • Find that ship in an enemy fleet (RNG)
  • Disable that ship and win the battle
  • NOT completely destroy the ship
  • Chance the enemy powers back up any ship(RNG)
  • Chance they power up the specific ship (RNG)
  • Chance of boarding/capture success (RNG with critical failure)

Basically there are 4 separate RNG mechanics working against you.  If you want to capture any specific non-common ship without savescumming, you need on order of 1 in 10,000 rng luck

So lets break down each RNG component and see how we can put more player agency on that factor, rather than simply bumping up the chances:
Finding the ship
Increase the information available to the player before he can see the enemy fleet.  For military ships, this could be a good function for the secure comm relay (sniffer).  With a sniffer in place, fleets for that faction could display their full composition on the map screen.  For pirates, bounties could be expanded to provide some more information, which would also go a long way to help those people who don't think fighting onslaught bounties is worth it.

Chance of ship powering up
This can be improved with specialized weapons and skills.  Perhaps EMP damage can be expanded to disable ships with higher power levels, or additional damage types could be invented.  This could also work in reverse, where the base chance is raised significantly but say, explosive damage drastically reduces the capture chance.

Further, the location of damages to the hull can affect this stat. Targetting the engines specifically and doing a majority of your damage there could increase the probability, or perhaps simply a surgical strike where all the damage is concentrated in any single section of the ship.

Chance the specific ship powers up
In the current implementation, only one ship per combat has a chance to enable boarding.  This could be eliminated entirely, allowing the enemy a chance (based on the above) to attempt to flee with any or all ships disabled.  Then the player can be given a choice of which ships he wants to board, even allowing boarding of multiple ships at the same time (requiring a different boarder ship for each one).

Chance of boarding/capture success
This could be improved based on the number and type of crew/marine sent over to board, as well as a new skill governing boarding, as well as (with the above) the number of ships you attempt to board at the same time.  When using hard-dock, the class of ship used for docking could also impact this result.  Special troop-transport boarding ships could be put in the game to facilitate easier boarding

Boarding with too many OR too few troops should decrease your chance of success.  A large boarding party may be slower than a small one, giving the enemy time to self destruct, or else damaging the ship unnecessarily with overkill.  The type of ship used for boarding and the size of the target ship can both impact this, how many connecting points on the hull can troops be inserted?

The end result should be that a player who does NOT specifically intend to board and capture ships has roughly the same probability of capturing any random ship as they currently do, but one who DOES intend to capture ships could have better than 50/50 odds of taking their desired ship intact, if they play the combat right.

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