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Starsector 0.95.1a is out! (12/10/21); Blog post: Hostile Activity (09/01/22)

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Messages - BaBosa

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If I make a weapon with a long charge up time, very fast projectile speed and slow turn rate. Would enemy ships try to get out of the way during the charge time?
Also, if a ship system allowed two phase ships to hit each other. Would the AI work fine with that?

Announcements / Re: Starsector 0.95.1a (In Development) Patch Notes
« on: November 11, 2021, 08:14:37 PM »

I am a bit curious where your ideas for the elite Impact Mitigation effect are going, given the 90% max mitigation being duplicated in Polarized armor.  Where you looking for something that helps at high armor levels and or small weapon hits (which is what the 85%-90% does), but doesn't quite stack so much (1/3 less damage during the maximum mitigation period extends it by a factor of 1.5,.e. 50% more, while 2/3 extends it by by a factor of 3).


Would something like a simple 10% more real armor, or +75/150/200/250 (tweak numbers as needed) real extra armor based on size, repaired instantly at the end of every engagement work?  Where "repaired" is just the has an elite Impact Mitigation officer piloting it at deployment time, so it adds say +250 to whatever the armor was there as the ship is deployed into the fight.  At the end, if it's over normal maximum in any cell, just remove excess.

I'm actually pretty open to what the effect might be - ideally it'd be something that's at least semi-interesting gameplay-wise, and also doesn't come with the problem of, for example, making most kinetics near-useless vs hull, like +150 effective armor did.

The issue with +X armor (not effective, just at the start) is that it wouldn't apply once command is transferred. Generally, the goal of the design is to have skill effects transfer over - although a couple do break that rule; most notably Missile Specialization. I kind of wonder - is "giving your intended flagship to an officer with Missile Spec, and probably Reliability Engineering, and then transferring command to it after deployment to benefit from about an extra skill's worth of stuff" at all a thing? I'd guess it's probably not quite worth it, but if we pile on more bonuses that work like this...

That is a fair point.  Stack enough bonuses and some min-maxer some where will take advantage of it.  I will admit if I'm pulling solo Odyssey shenanigans, I'll load it up with a missile expertise officer and switch into it, since my officers have nothing better to do in that scenario.

Interesting gameplay-wise is perhaps a bit tough given it has traditionally I simply take more shots to die kind of skill, which definitely makes the character or officer stronger, but doesn't feel like it changes the ship fundamentally.

Oh, how's this for a thought: damage to armor reduced based on current ship speed. The faster you're going, the more shots 'glance off'!
Balancing could be tricky, and might require scaling differently for different ship classes... but at least the notion of it seems good: a small benefit for slow, high-armor ships, a larger benefit for faster, less-armored ships, and a hopefully-noticeable boost to durability while Burn Drive is active.
Extra armor durability during Burn drive would be amusing, I admit, and potentially really useful.  It does make it fairly niche though.  There is quite a large range in speeds in each ship class, say from 25 of the Onslaught to the 70 of the Odyssey.  Not to mention plasma burn drive.  It also ties into gameplay.

What are mechanics and behavior we can tie into?  Maneuverability, speed.  Either modifying those numbers, or basing it off what you're doing (i.e. the proportional bonus to speed suggestion).  There's weapons fire state, although that doesn't make much sense.  There's shield state and flux levels.  Polarized armor already has stuff proportional to flux level though.  There's shield state though.  Your armor could become better if you have no shields up (which would indirectly make damping field better).  Reinforcing internal structures in a powered way somehow.

You could make the armor trade for winning the flux war explicit.  You reduce your current flux levels by real armor lost.  I.e. take a hit that make you lose X armor, reduce your built up hard flux by Y.  If no armor was lost (i.e. it was all already destroyed in that cell) then no benefit.  It does mean if an Onslaught eats a Reaper, it suddenly perhaps drops it's flux level by a few thousand.  You're essentially storing waste flux in the armor sections, and if it get's blown off, it takes the flux with it.

Alternatively, increase flux dissipation while shields are down is perhaps simpler to communicate, and incentives actually armor tanking more.

Some crazier ideas:  Ramming bonus when impacting on the ship sprite instead of shields, and reduced or completely negated damage from ship explosions.

Actually, for unshielded ships like Ramparts, or phase ships like the afflictor, being immune to ship/station explosions would be a fairly big quality of life improvement.  You could alternatively simply limit how much damage AoE effects do to armor cells in total, so that things like Reapers still make holes, but they are smaller holes.

I really like some of these ideas.
Removing flux when taking armour damage seems really cool. It would help ships keep pressuring Ships that have more dissipation. Wouldn’t want it on many ships though. It’d probably be a built in hullmod.

Making ramming damage greater when using hull instead of shields sounds like something that should be normal. You’re risking more significant damage to yourself that way so there should be a bigger payout.
Flat immunities are boring in my opinion but making the rugged construction hullmod say half or quarter death explosion damage would be pretty damn cool and it would fit.
Not so much for phase ships as they’re supposed to just phase out.

Reducing the size of the destroyed sections from missiles is a really cool idea. But I’m not sure if it could be implemented in a good way.

I aim for flawless victories every time in bounty fights, and generally consider any losses to be significant failures, although typically some failure can be tolerated without the bounty becoming unprofitable.
Regarding bounty profitability, I kinda have a bone to pick here.  Since this game is to some degree basically just the Golden Age of Piracy in space, a significant amount of monies from bounty hunting (ie, letters of marque/commissions) awards back then was predicated on bringing back prize ships fo' dat cash, but in this game, it's (understandably) different.  Since the fleet limit is vanilla maxed at 30, a player has little to no incentive to recover an enemy ship (ie, one that doesn't keep SP hull mods) unless they want/need the underlying hull.  I understand this is necessary as much for stabilizing gameplay (ie, player can't cheese game design with a free money generator) as it is realism (rehabilitating a vacuum proof ship vs keeping a wooden boat afloat), but when a player decides not to recover ships, is the ship truly broken down into the equivalent value of ALL commodity goods, or is it the goods minus some loss for some (metal...) and normal for others (fuel)?  I guess I can always just crack open the code and look for myself, since initial bounty valuation seems primarily predicated on ship class and quality as much as fleet size for payout size calculations, but the previous statement is necessary for the following chain of thought.
Normally I wouldn't care as much, and it would break the game for basically any regular battle, but for bounties... adding a premium for leaving derelict ships to be "recovered" might be an interesting addition (although game would have to give player an option to choose breaking ships down now or not, and maybe only pays extra later based on valid "recovery," which is to say sometimes there is loss due to poaching by pirates or indys).  I almost feel like perhaps this would be better to post in the Suggestions forum, but since this kinda already came up... I'll drop it here.  Maybe someone will move it.  It also is partially mitigated by the fact that a player has no control over which ships are normally disabled/recoverable (as in, not recovering via SP), but seems like an interesting alternative to just always breaking stuff down.  Food for thought.

Making leaving ships behind part of the bounty would be really good. It makes it so recovering any of the ships not so free.
But more importantly, if it was made so you could actually make a ship become disabled rather than destroyed and show up on recovery. That would make fights have a varying amount of difficulty depending if you’re just trying to kill them or capture them.
Maybe make it so if you hit a ship with enough emp in a short enough time that they become fried and are disabled. It would have to be harder to do than just damage if their hull so it’s not broken but it would also make it easier to pick what ships you want to recover.

Announcements / Re: Starsector 0.95.1a (In Development) Patch Notes
« on: November 09, 2021, 05:44:23 PM »
Could you make it so if they’re firing at the last ship that they will fire everything then. It’s always fun to watch  ;D

Announcements / Re: Starsector 0.95.1a (In Development) Patch Notes
« on: November 08, 2021, 05:42:57 AM »
My thoughts on Hyperion and it’s system, giving it a single charge with a long recharge and the assumption that the player or officer will have system expertise could balance it. That’ll just let it do hit and runs which is a core part of the ship but the delay time to regain two charges should reduce the *** to acceptable amounts. Could make it so that 0flux bonus increases recharge rate by 3-4x so that SO builds still get to use just as much teleportation.
Trying to use flux to balance hasn’t worked well.
Giving it a bunch of charges (like 8?) but no recharge as they would force players/officers to be prudent but still allow for some fun insanity.
Another possibility is to give it a long wind up time during which shields are turned off. That would let it have no cool-down or charges. Though this way would make it tactically similar to burn drive.

Announcements / Re: Starsector 0.95.1a (In Development) Patch Notes
« on: November 07, 2021, 01:07:30 AM »
And AI treats everything as pressure weapons...
Alex, where is my perfect play AI?
In his secret basement lair. Plotting  :-X

I'll just say that this is something we've talked about internally - but, don't want to go into details in case nothing comes of it. But I also don't think that having a 3 skills total is *that* much more interesting, given that the skills are all fairly general-purpose boosts anyway.

They interesting thing would be to expand the list.  Have administrators with specific abilities, like boosted volatiles production specifically, or something that reduces specific penalties, or similar.  Basically, just more specific, so you're trying to find the right administrator for each of your worlds.

That’s basically just the colony items except you can only have one per colony which would make other people complain. Also they have a salary, a different picture and interface. That’s it.
The bigger issue I see is that with only one skill, there’s not really a reason to have administrators. It is almost (though not quite) worthwhile just removing them and increasing the number of colonies a player can manage.

A possible future direction to take them is to give them a more fundamental impact.
Like make it so that colonies you own are the baseline and that factions will attack them based on your relationship with them. So if you are hostile with everyone, then you defend against a lot of attacks.
But then if you hire an administrator, the relationship impact is reduced because you are seperate from the functioning of the colony.
And to compensate, the income you earn from the colony is reduced the more it is Lessening negative relationships.
Then you could also possibly hire faction affiliated administrators which further reduces income but instead increases relationship and maybe other bonuses.
And maybe administrated colonies could have a free market you interact with because it is separated from you plus they improve the colony automatically.

Basically colonies you manage are personal projects that you put a lot of effort in and earn a lot from (income would probably need like a x2 multipler to account for the greater amount of effort to defend from factions or make them happy.)
Then administrated colonies would be slower but more low effort income streams, maybe with some faction interplay.

Announcements / Re: Starsector 0.95.1a (In Development) Patch Notes
« on: November 07, 2021, 12:08:41 AM »
First, Alex this update looks amazing and almost a major update in it’s own right.
The skill rework looks *mwah* magnificent, the less variable weapons load out for all ships will be great if it works like it did for redacted.
The new low tech ship and rugged constructed hullmod is exactly what low tech frigates have been missing.
Max level officer retraining, cheaper cargo pod stabilisation, patrol distractions, defend assignments, thumper burst changes, HSA rework are all awesome and amazing and aren’t the only small but great changes so thank you.

I suppose 600 flux might not be a big deal for one mauler, although multiple maulers could be mounted.
Set them on alternating, that would even out the flux and damage over time.
And about the worries of the low DPS, the increased accuracy means actual DPS will probably be up as there will be less misses and the burst and accuracy means that you can shred armour much better. It won’t be too good at actually taking out hull but kinetic can do that reasonably enough anyway. So overall it fulfils the niche of taking out armour at long range better. You can put it on cheap frigates and destroyers and they might actually do something against low tech cruisers and capitals. It may need tweaking like 0.5 or 1 sec faster cycle but otherwise I think it’s in a good place. It’s not as good as a suppressor to prevent shield flicker but then it can be paired or replaced with HVD which does respectable armour and emp damage anyway and so whether the shield is up or down it’s effective.
I’m gonna try putting it on some hounds and have them just plink from long range.

With civilian ships, you can’t make full civilian ships like the buffalo good combat ships, not without buffing it to the wazoo and going crazy. That’s just not worth even trying.
Ships like the mule, gemini, kite, colossus mks and such though, especially with the increased burn bonus from skill means that militarised subsystems can actually be reserved for ships that will fight rather than using it for the burn bonus.
Basically, the goal was to see some more true-civilian ships in battle, and that didn't work out at all.

You've designed yourself into a corner, there. Civilian ships simply don't have enough weapon slots to compete. The only role I have figured without redoing all the sprites is to let civ ships become bricks: can't really deal damage, but able to soak lots of damage to take pressure off of the real combat ships.

I suggest replacing Assault Package with 2 hullmods: one super-buffs flux capacity, the other super-buffs hull. In exchange they neuter all of the ship's logistics stats and have a high enough OP cost that most civilian ships can't fit both.

(Escort Package should be rebranded as a normal hullmod bc it is cool. Militarized Subsystems should not make a civilian ship count as a combat ship for skill buffs.)
SafariJohn made a lot of good points that I won’t repeat, but to add, making combat civilian ships work as damage soaking bricks with just enough firepower to not be ignored would be a good niche that doesn’t really have other ships filling it (they either have damage, armour and or dissipation as well). Making the hullmod reduce cargo, fuel and crew carrying capacity to low side of standard combat ship amounts and then significantly increasing capacity or hull per unit reduced would automatically scale the benefit between those that don’t need it so much like venture and atlas mkII and those that do like gemini and even make the original colossus into an interesting meme. I can just imagine it like a truck parking in front of a paragon and rolling down their windows to swear at them for honking ;D
It would also let it have very low OP.

Question, why Scarab OP reduced?

With carriers, I actually think how they are is pretty good. They’re frankly, boring to use, they can be fun to watch but I don’t think personal skills are necessary for that. I suspect why some people really want them is because they used to be really strong and they have fundamental advantages over weapons with much longer ranges and don’t produce flux or have limited missiles.
Not really having any reason to add officers to them is a bit of a problem though. A possible idea is a officer only skill that gives the fleet wide skill effects onto just their ship and remove that ship’s fighter bays from the fleet wide skill count. That will also help if we just want 1 carrier or all carriers. Which could actually be fine if the reduce weapon variability means more consistent point defence. Then 4 other skills can then be filled by the likes of system expertise, helmsmanship and ballistic mastery.
Otherwise I think if someone wants to focus on fighters that may be better suited for mods.

Modding / Re: [0.95a] Extra System Reloaded v.0.7.5
« on: August 21, 2021, 08:10:27 PM »
In that case it may be worth combing magazines with weapons. If I'm improving magazines I always want to also improve weapons and visa versa generally.

Suggestions / Re: An expedition rework idea
« on: August 19, 2021, 11:54:27 PM »
The main issue I see with expeditions is that they’re annoyingly repetitive and could have a lot more fractures.

About the feature, I’m pretty that’s just because Alex and the team haven’t yet had the spare time to add to it but will sometime in the future.

However I would like if in the next update for factions to not bother sending an expedition if it’s unlikely to succeed as that adds nothing and annoyingly decreases reputation.
And another thing to possibly add is making it so if multiple factions want to send an expedition but not one that’ll break through your defences, they plan to send expeditions that’ll arrive at your system simultaneously and fight together.
Not only does that add to the difficulty but fighting a mix of ship styles makes it harder to specialise against them and would be very interesting.

My 2 cents about expeditions in the future is that it should depend on the ingame reason.

Opportunistic attacks against a colony that’s trying to move into your market to ‘discourage’ them with raids but if the fleet is seriously endangered and expected repairs and replacements too expensive then they wouldn’t bother. These attacks should stop after a couple failed attempts or when defences become too strong.  Though then they should resume if your colony defences are broken, your fleet destroyed or production significantly increased.

Trade war against a colony that is significantly cutting into a factions market share should be the target of a proper campaign, with strategy, multiple fleets, targeting com relays, blockading the system, pick off patrols and move in once stability has lowered and the station is by itself with a fleet designed to fight stations and remove the offending industry, not just disrupt it. And then possibly move onto other industries and same system colonies if you’ve made things difficult or are already hostile factions.
This would make the fights more interesting as you’d have to pick your fights try reduce losses and plan not for complete destruction but hurt them enough to make them back off as they could just grind you down until you have to leave the system to buy more supplies for repairs.

AI fleet should be actually like the opportunistic attacks, with the hegomoney balancing AI use on all your planets vs how strong it would need to be to break through the weakest colony with AI.
Unless they think you’ll let them through.

Also the first two types of attacks should be less likely if they like you and instead you get complaints from those factions and you’re given options like bribe official, give a discount which decreases the export income from that factions colonies or just brush them off which decreases reputation but it starts off a small loss and then increases with the number of times you don’t give them a discount.

Another thing is they should look at systems and not just individual colonies, while they might not attack 1 small farming planet, 3 small farming planets to grater have a bigger effect and because they’re in the same system, a faction may as well hit all of them and not just one. .

I also think the idea of unique admirals is very good. It adds to the difficulty in a unique way and it makes more sense than there not being strong admirals in each faction.

Other option is to make expeditions an exception to the normal battle and fleet size limits, they make sense as it’ll decide the fate of an entire world so they should feel weighty.

Another idea to address the issue of having to stop what you’re doing to defend your colony is if Alex adds an option for us to leave a fleet at colonies that we can take control when a expedition attacks the station or tries to raid. Then the expeditions can be scaled with the expectation that the player is fighting and it cuts some of the hassle of expeditions. Though if ships are lost then you have to return to replace them. Doesn’t really make sense in game but would be a nice feature.

Unique ships doesn’t really make sense unless they feel like their faction is under threat. Otherwise they would save it for the last ditch fights.

Also, it makes sense that having high quality colonies tank your relations, they provide you with anything you want so what’s the need for good relationships at that point.

Addressing the initial post, expeditions are to give you another reason to fight but you have the option to pay to not deal with it by building defences.

Modding / Re: [0.95a] Extra System Reloaded v.0.7.5
« on: August 19, 2021, 04:21:24 PM »
Ah, I should have expected you guys would have already done phase.

But thanks for doing that stuff  ;D

Also I just realised I can check skill_resource_ratio.csv to check what everything needs.
Which is like; everything needs supplies, volatiles, organics, metals, rare metals and machinery. Except subsystems doesn’t need volatiles or rare metals; fighters and magazines doesn’t need organics; and weapons, ordinance and fighters need armaments as well.

Modding / Re: [0.95a] Extra System Reloaded v.0.7.5
« on: August 18, 2021, 09:28:48 PM »
Here's my invincible monitor with negative flux per damage, actually cause flux to go down when hit 8)
As well it generates supplies and fuel.
(Had to make another post as the screenshot couldn't fit in the previous one)

Modding / Re: [0.95a] Extra System Reloaded v.0.7.5
« on: August 18, 2021, 09:15:56 PM »
Hey, I gotta say this mod is really cool. It lets me use ships in the end game that I wouldn’t usually use because they can’t match the enimmies.

That said, some of the bonuses don’t scale neatly which bugs me because I’m OCD.
And the negative modifiers straight-up break and give negative values when quality is increased too much (I cheated a monitor to have quality 10  :D). Those should probably be like base x 1/(quality x (1+upgrade value)).

Also the logistical and technology seem to be pretty stuffed.
Technology, in particular, improves both shields and flux which are very powerful and probably should be separate.
Logistical just has a lot and I think it’d be nice if it was split into two, one for logistical ships with big cargo, sensor and max burn (mobility also has max burn) bonuses, and another that all ships want, CR per deployment, repair and recovery, less supplies/fuel/crew.

Also, I was wondering if shields upgrades can also improve phase? Having smaller cooldowns would be awesome  8)

And a last request, could there be some display showing what materials are needed for the upgrades. I’ve also had issues running around trying to get everything when I thought I was able to upgrade multiple times.

Cheers, and thank you for the mod  ;D

Modding / Re: farsector [mod suggestion]
« on: August 03, 2021, 08:28:21 PM »
Can’t you effectively do that with the adjusted sector mod?
Massively increase sector size without increasing constellations and maybe increase fuel consumption. A mod (can’t remember which one) increase fuel consumption based on how far you are from the core worlds.

Suggestions / Re: Improve preliminary survey ability
« on: August 02, 2021, 03:10:32 PM »
I think it could be really useful if you could do it while still in hyperspace near a star. It would reveal all the planet types, which would be useful to decide through which jumpoint to enter the system. Thats often critical information for missions and bounty hunting, when all you have a location hint is the planet type.

I like this idea, makes it useful but doesn’t detract from anything. You still have to drop in if you want salvage or check resources.

You deserve it man/goodboy.
Ah that would explain why the refuelling feels a little slow to me. I take a lot less tankers than normal expecting to use fuel siphoning, only to shoot myself in the foot  :P
Thank you for looking at that. It’s always annoying being a little short.

Suggestions / Re: Pather Tithe Suggestion
« on: August 01, 2021, 09:34:19 PM »
With pirate patrols, could it be a little random. Like to account for how it would depend on how desperate/aggressive/predatory the pirate captain is? So you still sometimes have fights but don’t always need to deal with it.
And Maybe add a fear factor that decreases the chance they’ll attack you if you’ve recently beaten another patrol?

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