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Author Topic: How not to suck?  (Read 3392 times)

Cruis.In

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How not to suck?
« on: April 06, 2019, 03:19:06 PM »

Ive built up a good size fleet. Destroyers, cruisers, battleships, battlecruiser, carriers, a mixture in storage. No matter what combination I use, I get owned by other fleets. Black Rock fleet, imperium fleet (using nexeorlin mod).

I set each ship to escort each other, and form on me. No one goes off on their own. What usually plays out, we face off with enemy and they eventually overwhelm us. They also have mostly cruisers, destroyers and frigates. My heavy firepower onslaught and his supporting cruisers and destroyers make no difference.

I try to fit with variation of anti shields and anti armor weapons on my battleship which I fly. I never had any trouble getting this far, I mean I'd say im in mid-end game area now, I've won lots of battles during that time. Should I be trying to out maneuver people instead of getting in a shooting war? Are my weapons terrible?
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Goumindong

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2019, 04:18:50 PM »

Without mnowing your fleet (and enemy) its hard to say...

But my general thought is; your tactics are not letting you exploit enemy weaknesses. If everyone is escorting you then its just like nothing is being ordered and youre centered on the enemies center. You cannnot flank (and if you try reinforcements come behind and flank you) and so youre stuck slugging it out againat enemies who may be evenly matched but for the ability to designate more orders. (Iirc the enemy AI is not limited in orders)

As a result any specific mismatches you might generate with personal flying cannot be exploited nor can any other mismatches be exploited by your AI.
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Zhentar

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2019, 06:33:07 PM »

At a guess, you've created a scenario where it's difficult for either side to actually finish off ships - overloaded ships can quickly pull back to be shielded by allies, covered until they can recover & shield up again. So it largely becomes a battle of endurance - and late game enemy fleets usually have much larger pools of combat readiness to draw from than player fleets do.

The AI is pretty good at leading the vanguard of your fleet; in some ways it can be much better than the player at absorbing a beating (e.g. flickering shields to let kinetics hit hull and HE hit shields). Leave that to an officer. The player's strength is in making sure enemy ships blow up. There are an awful lot of ways you can do that; I like taking a nimble Safety Override cruiser loaded with heavy blasters to dart into openings and take enemies out with burst damage (Eagle or Aurora; the Aurora is much more nimble but the Eagle can brutalize shields with three heavy machine guns). But you don't even need to be the one blowing things up, so long as you're making sure someone else is.
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Euphytose

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2019, 01:55:50 AM »

I also used a lot of escort orders when I was starting out. Don't. The ship loadout is far more important than the orders. Give it something that specializes it in one role, fitting for the ship.
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From a Faster Time

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2019, 02:34:33 AM »

Ive built up a good size fleet. Destroyers, cruisers, battleships, battlecruiser, carriers, a mixture in storage. No matter what combination I use, I get owned by other fleets. Black Rock fleet, imperium fleet (using nexeorlin mod).

I set each ship to escort each other, and form on me. No one goes off on their own. What usually plays out, we face off with enemy and they eventually overwhelm us. They also have mostly cruisers, destroyers and frigates. My heavy firepower onslaught and his supporting cruisers and destroyers make no difference.

I try to fit with variation of anti shields and anti armor weapons on my battleship which I fly. I never had any trouble getting this far, I mean I'd say im in mid-end game area now, I've won lots of battles during that time. Should I be trying to out maneuver people instead of getting in a shooting war? Are my weapons terrible?
Make a video of your typical engagement. And I will give you advise based on that. As there is many variables in play, I simply can't give you specific advise that is tailored to fixing your problem if you don't give a video. And I doubt you want generic advise.
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Cosmitz

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2019, 03:30:46 AM »

Having a wide frontline is very much an important thing. If you get flanked you'll have issues. Also, the game auto-groups things to escort, consider battle orders to be exactly that things you use to force a shape in the battle instead of a constant micromanaging thing.
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Cruis.In

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2019, 10:49:40 AM »

Ok the suggestions have been helpful, even though I know there isn't much data. Will download obs and go from there for a live recording. I've been having some more success. I realized I guess I was just trying to keep everyone together and mitigate pushes from the enemy, but I am more looking for good positioning and opening now.

What are some good suggestions for fighters/bombers to use on my 4 carriers?

Also, coming up against a fleet of equal size and strength one must expect to take losses, but even losing 3-4 ships an engagement is crippling money wise. And then there is no point recovering them even if they are intact because of the permanent damage to them.

Also, should I lean heavy to flux cap or flux vents? I max out both. I see people lean heavy towards vents and less flux cap, and just leave off some weapons to put on more system mods.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2019, 11:35:35 AM by Cruis.In »
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Midnight Kitsune

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2019, 12:39:57 PM »

Go with vents on your non phase ships first.
Also I would suggest NOT to play a heavily modded game until after you get the hang of vanilla SS.
Also, you are playing on .81 and not .9 due to the mods you have listed. Unless of course you somehow ported them over to .9
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intrinsic_parity

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2019, 01:02:25 PM »

General ship outfitting advice: you are always trying to balance incoming flux vs flux dissipation. Flux is generated by your weapons firing, by shields passively whenever they are up and also whenever you take damage on your shields. Flux dissipation is the rate the flux goes away, and if you are generating flux faster than you are dissipating it, you will eventually overload or be forced to retreat. Using more efficient/less weapons can reduce flux generation, hull mods can reduce shield damage taken and upkeep, range can allow you to avoid getting shot and thus you can reduce the amount of damage you take and the flux generated (via long range weapons and hull mods to increase range). You can also increase dissipation by vents and hull mods. All of these things are trying to reduce the amount of flux generated and maximize the amount of flux dissipated.

There are also skills you can get in the skill tree that influence many of these factors for both your own ship and your whole fleet, so consider taking those, they can make a big difference.

Always max vents before considering capacitors (there are some specific cases like phase ships where this is not accurate but it is a good rule of thumb).

In terms of weapon choices, there are three general directions to go: range, efficiency and burst damage.
The goal of range is to never take damage by staying far away. Use weapons like the HVD and heavy mauler with hull mods like ITU and sit at max range as much as possible.

The goal of efficient damage is to deal more damage to your enemy than they deal to you.
Efficiency is the best strategy for your AI companions. For this, you generally want more kinetic damage because it deals double damage to shields meaning it builds up twice as much flux in your enemy as your own ship (while you are shooting shields). You still need anti armor weaponry as well, but a bit less of it. A decent rule of thumb is a 2:1 kinetic to HE ratio.

The goal of burst damage is to deal damage to your enemy fast enough that you overload/damage them before they can escape or you overload yourself.
The AI is not good at using this type of ship, so this is something you would only do on a ship you will pilot yourself. You only want to use this strategy on ships that fast enough to escape because you will also be building up lots of flux in your own ship (burst weapons are not efficient). Ships like the medusa, aurora, and phase ships can exploit this. This requires skilled piloting but has the potential to do more damage than other strategies.

Also don't be afraid to recover damaged ships. They are a little worse but are cheap to maintain and deploy and numerical advantage is often more important than quality of ships. They also serve as fodder to protect your pristine ships.
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dk1332

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2019, 08:59:15 PM »

Most of this are pretty much General stuff and others are from my experience. If you really aren't doing well, use that mistake and learn from it. Anyway, here are some of my tips.

Some weapons are quite effective when set to "Alternate" rather than "Linked". This way, the flux cost is divided rather than multiplied, since its a single weapon firing at a time rather than both weapons. One of the best examples is the Pulse Laser and its smaller version. Also, Flux Dispensation should be higher or at least half the flux generated. If you really want high damage weapons, pick one that has a longer range and slow cooldown duration in order to give time for the ship to dispense some of its flux.

Think what you are going against and fit your ship to that particular role. High Tech ships usually have good shields but thin armor. Low tech ships have better armor but terrible shields. To make it simple, fighting a high tech fleet will be much easier if you have a fleet focused on taking down their shields. Thus a large percentage of Kinetic weapons on your ship is a must. Midline ships are quite tricky since most of them are quite balanced in both armor and shields. My usual approach to most ships is overload their shields and let the bombers deal with their armor.

Dedicated Carriers is a must have against large fleets with capitals on it. Keep them in a distance and assign Timid or Cautious commanders in them. Send your heavy hitters to pressure that capital ship, once exposed, its pretty much a sitting duck for your bombers to pick on.

Make sure you can deploy more or equal ships than/to your enemies. Sure, sending 2-3 capitals sounds tempting but it will hurt you in terms of numerical advantage. 2 Onslaughts with 8 smaller ships will not do well against 20 smaller ships. Always good to have frigates, sure, they may not look much but don't expect to chase an SO Hound with an Apogee. Use frigates to take on other frigates and thin their numbers.

Always have more burn. (D) ships with damaged engines aren't gonna help you run away from smaller fleets followed by a larger fleet. The game is sadistic AF and for some reason, if a small patrol fleet catches up to you, the closest armada gets to join in even if by definition of close is relative.

Keep an eye on the battle radar. There are times that the A.I. will bait you by letting you damage it and makes you chase it back to a huge flock of ships. Don't go alone and keep your distance. If it does that, pull back to your fleet, and pick on the approaching ships instead. Always take a moment to open the whole battle map to see whats happening. This way, you can see ambushes or allies that might need help. You don't want a single wolf with reaper torpedoes get behind you and make you realize how that torpedo got its name in the first place.

Make use of destroyed ships in battle, use can use them as cover to take a quick break and vent some flux or use them to catch the fire. Just go behind them, open your shields and start pushing.
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SapphireSage

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #10 on: April 07, 2019, 11:13:09 PM »

Keep in mind that these are mostly based on my experiences, so feel free to experiment and tweak it as it works for you.

I set each ship to escort each other, and form on me. No one goes off on their own. What usually plays out, we face off with enemy and they eventually overwhelm us. They also have mostly cruisers, destroyers and frigates. My heavy firepower onslaught and his supporting cruisers and destroyers make no difference.

In the beginning, I used to do that but you have to realize what the escort order does. Currently the escort order does not mean 'follow this ship and provide backup' it means 'Put yourself between the enemies bullets and this ship regardless of size differences' with the exception of carriers who prefer to hide behind escort targets.

Instead, don't be afraid to let ships be free roaming. Though this does mean checking up every so often to ensure no one gets into an overextended position with no chance of rescue (though orders as suggestions can prevent you saving them anyway) the ships on your team tend to be very cautious and conservative in what they do and will more often than not be perfectly fine on their own. This is more true the bigger ships you have in your fleet as larger ships are not able to travel quickly and so will be more likely to fight around allies in a line whereas frigates will usually zip around and wind up behind enemy lines either skirmishing or kiting.

Also, escort does not work well between ships that have wildly different speeds as a slower vessel can't keep up with a really quick one so they won't support each other and a quick one won't use its superior speed to stay safe because of the leash the escort order gives it.


I try to fit with variation of anti shields and anti armor weapons on my battleship which I fly. I never had any trouble getting this far, I mean I'd say im in mid-end game area now, I've won lots of battles during that time. Should I be trying to out maneuver people instead of getting in a shooting war? Are my weapons terrible?


Depends on what kind of ship you're piloting and what you like to do. Are you flying a Hyperion, tempest, or Aurora? Go around the flank and hammer anything that overextends itself or backs off while weakened from your main line.

Playing as a Paragon, onslaught, hammerhead, or SO lasher in the earlier game? Fly in there and cause some trouble with your superior firepower. Don't be afraid to do a head on approach when flying an onslaught as excluding mods, stations, and remnants it has the highest offensive power of all sector ships.

If you desire to be a Heron or Astral then make sure to take things in a more tactical manner and more actively directing your fighters and fleet to achieve your goals.

I will say though that how you build your ships will have the largest impact on their performance, which is why Loadout Design 3 is considered on of the top tier skills in the game. What you want to do is try to think of a role for the ship to do and build for it, and very importantly make sure that what you hand off to the AI is something that they'll be able to make good use of. The AI are very good at being a line, but don't expect it to smartly use a quick, high alpha damage, assassin style ship as that's more the player's territory. Don't feel as though you have to fulfill that role though, there are many ways to skin a cat in this game.

What are some good suggestions for fighters/bombers to use on my 4 carriers?

Depends on what your carriers are and what you want to do with them.

For general bombing runs I would suggest a mixture of Broadswords/Longbows(Anti-shield/Torpedo protection) + Daggers/Perditions/Khopesh/Tridents(Anti-armor/hull)

For fighter superiority you can go with a lot of sparks/wasps/xyphos/thunders

For anti-frigate flankers any fighter with excellent speed and a high range of engagement such as thunders(ion suppression, but takes awhile) + gladius(can bring more damage than thunders)

For destroying starbases, Piranhas, which are normally horrible in fights due to always missing or friendly fire threats, can be very dangerous in raw damage output and PD saturation on the stationary target.

Also, coming up against a fleet of equal size and strength one must expect to take losses, but even losing 3-4 ships an engagement is crippling money wise. And then there is no point recovering them even if they are intact because of the permanent damage to them.

Don't be afraid to recover ships just because they have some D-mods. The D-mods even make ships cheaper to deploy in fights making them cost less in supplies to fight, and if you really want to there's a skill that reduces ships' maintenance costs based on its D-mods.

You don't need to restore the ship and in-fact I advise against it as its cheaper to manufacture or buy a new one. Restore is there for extremely rare/unique ships that you cannot easily replace with the earlier two methods.

D-mods mean far less than outnumbering your opponents, so long as they're not something crippling such as degraded engines(Can reduce fleet burn speed which can be dangerous for your fleet.), any D-mod that affects fighters for a carrier(means fighters will die quickly and uselessly), or damaged cargo bays for freighters.

In-addition to that don't be afraid to not only recover your own ships, but feel free to recover enemy ships as well if they're worthy.

Also, should I lean heavy to flux cap or flux vents? I max out both. I see people lean heavy towards vents and less flux cap, and just leave off some weapons to put on more system mods.

Generally vents over caps, with some exceptions where more caps are better and vent speed doesn't matter (ie. Phase ships, frigates, hyperion). I will say though that if you're regularly spending enough OP to max out both weapons and flux stats that you should think about using more Hullmods. Many hullmods can be extremely good, like expanded missile rack can make double the reapers effectively doubling how many cruisers can be immediately put out of commission and Integrated Targeting Unit is a staple of almost every warship build type with Expanded Deck Crew being its Carrier must-have version.

Don't be afraid to leave some weapon slots empty too to help with a ship's flux stats or to get more OP to assist the build plan you're going for on a ship. A scarab is a good example of a ship that benefits heavily from leaving some weapon slots empty.
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Thaago

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Re: How not to suck?
« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2019, 09:30:48 AM »

Its a little hard to tell and you've gotten some good advice so far. 1st question: what kinds of skills are you using?

I ask because in your initial post you mentioned using an Onslaught with supporting ships to watch the flanks. This is a good way to use the Onslaught, and with a few combat skills it should simply overwhelm everything but the strongest enemy capitals (and really it overwhelms those too). Essentially, your battleship 'tip of the spear' should be able to punch through anything but a battlestation/fortress.

If you've been using a 'fleet support' type suite of skills in order to maximize total bonuses, I think you will be shocked at how much more effective it is to have a strong set of flagship skills. Not all flagship skills, as the must have fleet skills are incredibly powerful, but the good ones make a huge difference.

2cd Question: Are you using missiles and bombers? From your point of 'they eventually overwhelm us' it seems that you may be having trouble landing finishing blows. It is very much worth it to lower your capacitors to mount harpoons or similar maneuverable finishers on whatever missile slots are in your fleet. If short on OP, Reapers or single shot hammers are cheap and give some bite (but cannot overfire). For an Onslaught: the missile load reflects what type of thing you want to kill. 4x typhoon reapers lets you give a very strong burst, while annihilators are a constant HE stream of death, but both are less effective against maneuverable destroyers. For them, 4x Harpoons is just 'target with r, fire, target something else because the destroyer is about to explode'.

In terms of bombers, piranhas are station specialists, all the others are effective with some being slight better than others against different types of ships. Longbows are excellent against everything but aren't killers by themselves.
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