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Starsector 0.97a is out! (02/02/24); New blog post: Codex Overhaul (05/11/24)

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Author Topic: Starsector 0.95a (Released) Patch Notes  (Read 605302 times)

SafariJohn

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #810 on: March 11, 2021, 06:01:57 PM »

My hot take on the Storm Needler changes: I still don't see myself ever using them.
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Mach56

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #811 on: March 11, 2021, 06:09:28 PM »

The Onslaught is getting HBI as well next update, keep that in mind.
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Megas

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #812 on: March 11, 2021, 06:14:03 PM »

@ Goumindong:  I agree about Mark IX on Conquest, and prefer it over Storm Needler (and Gauss), mainly because Storm Needler requires Aggressive AI to work, and if I want the AI to close into the proper range for Storm Needlers, I need Heavy Mortars to pair with them.  I even prefer Mjolnir over Storm Needler on Conquest.

Conquest with Storm Needler, if I want AI to use them, they need 700 range HE (or sacrifice one of the heavies for HAG or Mjolnir).  If I use Mauler or possibly even 900 range HE, the Conquest will hang back and plink away with longer range weapons and not get close enough to effectively use Storm Needlers.

With Mark IX, I can pair with 800 or 900 range ballistics and Steady or angrier AI will get close enough and blast the enemy with all guns blazing (except maybe the rearmost ballistics, which is why I may leave them empty at times.)

Also, two old Storm Needlers and Mortars is not significantly stronger (if they are) than other double-sided weapon configurations I tried.  If I want to use one-side only loadouts for maximum firepower, two Mjolnirs and two Heavy AC/Needlers is very brutal and makes things dead very fast at medium range, faster than balanced double-sided loadouts.  (One of the older variants used dual Mjolnir and dual Heavy ACs, among other stuff.)

The Onslaught is getting HBI as well next update, keep that in mind.
Onslaught needs it because the firing arcs of the side heavy mounts are getting smaller for no more near overlap with the center heavy mount.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2021, 06:17:38 PM by Megas »
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Hiruma Kai

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #813 on: March 11, 2021, 07:12:25 PM »

Heavy Ballistics Integration generally shouldn't make a difference between selecting various large ballistic mount weapons (unless the large weapon costs less than 10 OP, which no vanilla ballistic does).  It does makes a difference when comparing between large and medium weapons (or empty) however.  The reason being the opportunity cost between the large weapons ends up being the same. 

While saying a Mark IX Autocanon does 19.3 DPS/OP on a Legion and 43.5 DPS/OP on a Conquest is literally true, I don't feel it gives an accurate impression of how the weapon performs between builds with and without it on those two ships.   They are not 225% better on a Conquest then on a Legion.  The weapon itself is the same.  And if you swap it for a Storm Needler, you give up 10 OP of something else on the Conquest as well as on the Legion.  I feel comparing complete builds in that case is probably a better way to go.

I still think you're shifting the high cost from raw maximum damage (highest shield DPS in the game by a long shot) to strong efficiency.  Which makes it easier to fit, but overall strength of the weapon remains the same (i.e. the 8.06 vs 7.93 I mentioned earlier).  I also think if you are aiming to buff the Storm Needler to help compensate against the new Mark IX, I'd probably drop the OP cost to somewhere between 22 and 25 OP in addition to the mentioned changes.  That's just eyeballing the 33% cut in overall damage output (which would tend to make me think the fitting cost would drop to 66% of its original value - say 18), but then buffing the efficiency by 23% or so, bumps it 22 or 23 OP.

Given there's no change to the range, it still means Cruisers with ITU and a Mark IX out range Capitals with Storm Needlers and ITU (1260 versus 1120).  Since there's no longer an overwhelming difference in raw damage (750 vs 348), that 900 versus 700 range matters even more - it takes longer to overcome the hard flux deficit gained while closing. 

Alternately, if you want to keep the 28 OP cost, I'd advocate for the 800 range.  At which point Capital + ITU + Storm Needler at least matches range with Cruisers with Mark IX autocannons (1280 versus 1260).
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Goumindong

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #814 on: March 11, 2021, 07:41:26 PM »


Eh, low tech ships are more dissipation limited than OP limited. Efficiency is just a measure of how effectively a weapon turns dissipation/flux into damage, so it's more important to be flux efficient than OP efficient on low tech ships that are flux limited IMO.

Heavy needler is already a good example of how efficiency can be more important than damage/OP.

This is... sometimes true. But often not. It’s very true on high tech ships shooting energy damage and tanking with shields. But things break down once youre shooting efficiently enough that it makes sense to trade your own soft flux into their hard flux.

Are you better off shooting 400 flux to to do 690 kinetic damage or not? Yes, almost always, so long as theyre shooting back at 1 to 1 you gain 190 net flux in the flux war. If they’re shooting at 2 to 1 you are ahead by 980 flux. Overfluxing with more efficiency is better, obviously. But the net damage matters more than the flux cost because the damage coming in is in net.

Let’s imagine 28 OP worth of old Mark IX Vs a new SN. The Mark IX does 541 dmg for 622 flux. The SN does 500 DPS for 350. So net firing at each other is 1622 for the Mark IX and 1432 for the SN. Better for the SN... but not all that much. And the Mark IX has other advantages. The old SN slaughters the Mark IX though 2122 to 1732. This is better as a percentage and better in net. At the end of this fight the old SN has 200 more flux per second (it took to overflux the target) to utilize to fire HE into the targets hull than the new SN does.

This doesn’t mean that each ship makes this comparison favorably for the Mark IX. But low tech ships tend to have loads of slots and not as much OP to fill all of them with the biggest weapons they can and the SN wasn’t beating Mark IX before the changes...

@hiruma it doesn’t make the weapon better on the conquest as compared to the legion but it does make the weapon better in comparison to another weapon on the conquest.
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Alex

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #815 on: March 11, 2021, 07:57:22 PM »

That's just eyeballing the 33% cut in overall damage output (which would tend to make me think the fitting cost would drop to 66% of its original value - say 18), but then buffing the efficiency by 23% or so, bumps it 22 or 23 OP.

Just a thought about this - I'm not sure that a DPS drop for a weapon that's going to be flux-limited regardless is actually that much of a difference. Arguably, the DPS reduction is almost a buff because it makes the weapon easier to use while largely retaining its damage potential. If it takes an extra few seconds of fire to get the same damage out... heck, that might even be better since it's harder to armor-tank against. There will be some situations where it's worse, too, but I don't think it's as clear cut as just "33% weaker".
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SonnaBanana

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #816 on: March 11, 2021, 08:08:42 PM »

Make the burst longer?
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Thaago

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #817 on: March 11, 2021, 08:14:37 PM »

Consider the following:

Case 1) a ship can mount gun A for 15 OP, or gun B for 25 OP.

Case 2) a ship can mount gun A for 5 OP, or gun B for 15 OP. The ship has 10 less OP in its budget.

What is the difference between these cases? Nothing, assuming the mount is going to be filled. The remaining OP after selecting gun A is always going to be 10 higher than selecting gun B. The number of vents/caps the ship can equip are the same. The number of hullmods taken is the same. Every statistic of the two cases are identical.

It follows that Heavy Ballistics Integration has no impact on the relative value of two guns: it simply increases the OP available to the ship assuming that the ship uses a gun of that size (or, put another way, it decreases the OP available to the ship if it uses a medium gun instead). So, what does this mean for measures of statistics in the form of X per OP? They are meaningless. Instead, compare the stat difference vs the difference in OP, and consider what those OP can get a ship.

Using this metric, lets compare the stats of the new Mk IX and new Storm Needler:
Interesting! 350 flux per second is indeed a reasonable gun for an Onslaught or Dominator flux budget, as current Mk IX is 400 and Heph is 480.

Comparing the new Mk IX and new Storm needler:
Both have 350 flux/second.
Mk IX is 350 DPS, Storm needler is 600 DPS. Accuracy comparison may effect this, but with Storm Needler losing accuracy it may have a similar hit rate to Mk IX
Mk IX has 200 shot size vs 50: significantly better hull damage per shot. Vs a hypothetical 1000 armor reduced to 50 from minimum, Mk IX is doing 66%, or 233. Storm needler is doing 33%, or 200.
Mk IX has 900 range, Storm 700
Mk IX is 18 OP, Storm 28.

So, to sum up: Storm has a massive advantage in close range anti-shield combat but is slightly worse against hull. Mk IX has a large range advantage, and is 10 OP cheaper. I can see using both these guns depending on the situation: the Storm Needler is an excellent anti-high tech weapon, because high tech (other than paragon) needs to get close to engage and relies on their shields. The Mk IX is a more general weapon.

The two guns have a 10 OP difference, so lets think about what those 10 OP can do for a ship. In the case where the ship is not vent maxed already (rare, but could happen), that lowers the Mk IX's flux cost to 250. In that case its efficiency rises to .714 f/d, compared to the SN's .583. Anti hull (same circumstance, no shield) goes to 1.07 compared to 1.75. DPS value remain unchanged. In the non-vent locked case, the Mk IX is still a less efficient, much lower DPS anti-shield weapon, but a MUCH more efficient anti-hull weapon.

Vent-locked cases are rare though. Excess capacitors is much more common, but harder to analyze. The Mk IX gives the ship 2000 more flux capacity. This could support its own firing for 5.7 seconds longer than the Storm Needlers, if firing over the dissipation limit (usual case), up to some remaining flux safety margin. For damage against shield, we can solve for the amount of time the ship needs to fire for break even damage: 7.98 seconds. So if the ship can fire for more than 8 seconds before fluxing out, the storm needler is better by comparison. If it can fire less than 8 seconds, then the Mk IX + additional capacity wins.

Other measure are harder to directly compare, but the real question to answer for these guns is: what can you do with 10 OP, and is that worth the difference between a storm and a MK IX? The answer depends on everything else on the ship.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2021, 08:24:59 PM by Thaago »
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Goumindong

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #818 on: March 11, 2021, 09:01:01 PM »

That's just eyeballing the 33% cut in overall damage output (which would tend to make me think the fitting cost would drop to 66% of its original value - say 18), but then buffing the efficiency by 23% or so, bumps it 22 or 23 OP.

Just a thought about this - I'm not sure that a DPS drop for a weapon that's going to be flux-limited regardless is actually that much of a difference. Arguably, the DPS reduction is almost a buff because it makes the weapon easier to use while largely retaining its damage potential. If it takes an extra few seconds of fire to get the same damage out... heck, that might even be better since it's harder to armor-tank against. There will be some situations where it's worse, too, but I don't think it's as clear cut as just "33% weaker".

The thing is though, kinetic weapons, especially kinetic weapons where you’re in knife fighting range aren’t ever really dissipation limited. You almost always want to shoot over your dissipation until the enemy puts their shields down. Doing this will mean you have more flux at the end of the fight when they do.

A DPS reduction on a weapon is never a buff all things equal. It’s always better to have more available DPS. It’s not always better to shoot that DPS but it’s always better to have it.

Quote
Instead, compare the stat difference vs the difference in OP, and consider what those OP can get a ship.

But what that can get your ship is often measured in guns, where the measure is in DPS/OP :p granted, not always in DPS/op of the weapon in question but still DPS/OP. 10 OP is a HAC and if I am not fitting a HAC there then by definition I find the thing that is more valuable than 214 dps at 1.0 flux efficiency to 800 range.

Or you could just put the old and new head to head and see what is better.

E.G. what wins in net flux the new storm Needler or the old?

Old does 750 dmg for 650 flux. New is 500 dmg for 350 flux. If you fire the new one into the old one over dissipation at 1.0 shields then the old one has a net influx rate of 1650 while the new one has a net influx rate of 1850. Shields have to be .6 for this to equalize. 600+650 = 1250 and 900+350 = 1250.

.6 is a good shield. Better than any ship currently fitting a storm Needler can achieve. Which means the proposed storm Needler is a nerf in the majority of situations.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2021, 09:04:08 PM by Goumindong »
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intrinsic_parity

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #819 on: March 11, 2021, 09:36:50 PM »

Quote
A DPS reduction on a weapon is never a buff all things equal. It’s always better to have more available DPS. It’s not always better to shoot that DPS but it’s always better to have it.
I think this would be true if the AI fired weapons at partial ROF, but in the actual game, the vast majority of guns are on autofire 95% of the time, meaning you really need to judge a gun as if it is always firing. The only case I agree with this is if the weapon is on the player ship and manually fired.

Also, firing over dissipation in a 1v1 is significantly different from firing over dissipation in a fleet context. You are essentially converting your shield HP into damage. In a 1v1, this is always fine because that damage goes towards reducing your opponents ability to deal damage, but in a fleet, you have to consider it as making yourself more vulnerable to other ships that you haven't been fighting. Especially for slow ships that cannot dictate engagements, this is very risky, and that needs to be weighed into analysis of weapons. High flux cost weapons are basically dealing a bunch of self damage to shields when firing, and reducing that can make the ship a lot more survivable.
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Goumindong

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #820 on: March 11, 2021, 09:59:00 PM »

Quote
A DPS reduction on a weapon is never a buff all things equal. It’s always better to have more available DPS. It’s not always better to shoot that DPS but it’s always better to have it.
I think this would be true if the AI fired weapons at partial ROF, but in the actual game, the vast majority of guns are on autofire 95% of the time, meaning you really need to judge a gun as if it is always firing. The only case I agree with this is if the weapon is on the player ship and manually fired.

Also, firing over dissipation in a 1v1 is significantly different from firing over dissipation in a fleet context. You are essentially converting your shield HP into damage. In a 1v1, this is always fine because that damage goes towards reducing your opponents ability to deal damage, but in a fleet, you have to consider it as making yourself more vulnerable to other ships that you haven't been fighting. Especially for slow ships that cannot dictate engagements, this is very risky, and that needs to be weighed into analysis of weapons. High flux cost weapons are basically dealing a bunch of self damage to shields when firing, and reducing that can make the ship a lot more survivable.

Sure. The optimal fleet behavior is to make the thing being targeted as tanky as possible... but only if you’re making the things not being targeted as damaging as possible. For a set behavior and fixed fitting across the fleet the optimal one on one fitting is also the optimal in a fleet*. If it’s better to have two guns and one cap vs one gun and two caps in a one on one it also is in a fleet. Your allies will make the things shooting at you stop faster by firing more.

But we can have an obvious example. Suppose we have a New Vs Old. One fits a new SN and a HAC for 714 DPS and 564 flux. The other fits the old SN and 10 vents for 750 dps and 550 flux. (Or 10 caps for extra tank/firing time... or anything). Are you leaving weapon slots empty on your ships that have options for more kinetic dmg? You could be with the storm Needler and using those OP for other things. If not vents then capacitor. 1000 more capacitor with only 86 more flux/second is better so long as you’re capping flux firing under 11 seconds ignoring the fact that you got to get one of the best medium kinetics in the game at 21.4 dps/OP and we’re still doing less dps

*ignoring range here. Obviously it’s OK to trade damage for range as you add more ships. Especially because you should be thinking as if range is damage. But when discussing reducing the dmg of a weapon and not changing its range range uhh doesn’t change.

Edit: like... if HVD doubled its DPS and flux cost you wouldn’t rush out to take all the HVD off your ship. And if you did take HVD off your ships it would be because you suddenly had twice what you needed and could spend the OP on other things. (Like HE dmg or flux stats)
« Last Edit: March 11, 2021, 10:09:34 PM by Goumindong »
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Goumindong

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #821 on: March 11, 2021, 10:15:02 PM »

We now interrupt this arcane discussion on weapon balance that barely even matters in the grand scheme of the game to ask:

So back to the original patch notes I love the “moving slow” implementation. I notice that you mentioned that there will be potential impacts from not moving slow in a field.

Is there any possibility that these could additionally spike your drive signature (and have the drive signature reduction apply universally so long as your transponder was off) so that we could take extra risks when smuggling cargo into places?
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intrinsic_parity

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #822 on: March 11, 2021, 10:47:53 PM »

Sure. The optimal fleet behavior is to make the thing being targeted as tanky as possible... but only if you’re making the things not being targeted as damaging as possible. For a set behavior and fixed fitting across the fleet the optimal one on one fitting is also the optimal in a fleet*. If it’s better to have two guns and one cap vs one gun and two caps in a one on one it also is in a fleet. Your allies will make the things shooting at you stop faster by firing more.
this is... not really the point. You don't control what the enemy attacks and you can't really predict what will be under fire at any given time, so you have to design your loadouts to be successful if any given ship comes under fire from multiple enemy ships. Thats more the point: you want your ship to be resilient to being under heavy fire, i.e. you want to have a significant amount of capacity to spend on defense in order to survive a disadvantageous situation long enough to escape/get backup. If you build ships that are overfluxed so that they spend a lot of their capacity on dealing damage, those ships will be less resilient to suddenly coming under heavy fire and thus more likely to die and cost you money. I personally prefer 'safer' ships that deal less damage, because ultimately, the goal is to maximize the rewards of a fight, not win it as fast as possible. Losing ships is the most significant negative outcomes of any fight and thus my highest priority is avoiding it.

Basically, my optimization problem is:
Minimize losses and minimize deployment cost while winning before PPT runs out. The specifics of dealing damage are secondary.

And if you did take HVD off your ships it would be because you suddenly had twice what you needed and could spend the OP on other things. (Like HE dmg or flux stats)
This is exactly the point. Current storm needler is more than what you need on most of the ships in the game. They want to spend some of that 650 flux/sec on other weapons that might deal hull/armor damage, or cover a different angle, or simply save some flux for defense. The new storm needler (hopefully) more neatly fits into what is needed on ships that exist in the game, even if in a vacuum, it is less powerful.
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Cyan Leader

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #823 on: March 11, 2021, 11:04:45 PM »

Honestly my take is that this level of brainstorming won't take us much far when there are so many other unknowns such as the ships we'll have available, what ships we'll be facing against, the weapon selection, the hullmods we'll have (plus the impact of permanent hullmods), what skills we'll have and so on. At the end of the day this will be better suited for the post-patch patch that is aimed at refining the experience.
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Goumindong

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Re: Starsector 0.95a (In Development) Patch Notes
« Reply #824 on: March 11, 2021, 11:18:17 PM »

You don't control what the enemy attacks and you can't really predict what will be under fire at any given time, so you have to design your loadouts to be successful if any given ship comes under fire from multiple enemy ships

Yes, precisely. And the one that does that is the one that can shoot all its flux.

If you cannot choose which ship will be shot but can assume the enemy will focus a weak one then the optimal one on one fit is also the optimal fleet fit. *

You want your ship to be tanky so it survives being shot by a bunch of other ships but do not realize that this means you will get shot by multiple ships more, as compared to dumping your flux, because your allies cannot kill a ship they’re ganging up on as fast if they do not dump their flux. Your allies cannot force ships to backup if they do not dump their flux. Your ship cannot force an enemy to back up if it does not win the flux war and dumping flux wins the flux war.

For intuition imagine if you’re in a smaller ship fighting a bigger ship. The intuition from earlier didn’t change; we still “win best” by dumping our flux or rather “lose least bad” because it’s better to spend 100 flux to to make the enemies shield go up 200 than it is to let the enemy shoot 200 flux to make our shield go up 400. But this is just what happens when you’re in a fleet and locally outnumbered. You still lose less bad by spending 100 flux to prevent 400 incoming flux. Your flux is 300 lower and it’s flux you can vent. If you can pop in and out of range being able to dump let’s you shift your available dissipation so that you’re using it more of the time. It’s good.


*again, not true in range trade offs because extra range means you get to shoot earlier (and with more ships) but it is true in terms of tank/dps trade offs.

Quote
This is exactly the point. Current storm needler is more than what you need on most of the ships in the game. They want to spend some of that 650 flux/sec on other weapons that might deal hull/armor damage, or cover a different angle, or simply save some flux for defense. The new storm needler (hopefully) more neatly fits into what is needed on ships that exist in the game, even if in a vacuum, it is less powerful.

I don’t see how making me fit more of them in order to be good is going to want to make me fit more of them. Is there a sweet spot here that I am not seeing. Take this to its logical conclusion. if it did 100 DPS for 0 flux it would be the best 28 OP weapon in the game!?!?! Or not, no it would be useless.

Similarly a weapon that did 7500 kin dps and used 6500 flux a second for 28 OP would be amazing. You could fit only it and utilize all the rest of your OP for other good things!  You could overload enemies instantly and then back out so that you utilized the entirety of your flux dissipation. More damage is better. Weapons that do more damage are better. Reducing the damage and flux usage may end up being better on the whole but is, all things equal, always a nerf. Increasing the damage and flux usage of a weapon and maintaining the efficiency is always a buff.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2021, 11:32:01 PM by Goumindong »
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