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Author Topic: Skill Changes, Part 1  (Read 14234 times)

intrinsic_parity

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #120 on: July 04, 2021, 03:36:38 PM »

There's no need for a mod. You can just open setting.json and set the max level to whatever you want.
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Ranakastrasz

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #121 on: July 04, 2021, 03:59:53 PM »

There's no need for a mod. You can just open setting.json and set the max level to whatever you want.
Technically true, but the experience curve grows excessively past the point the developers chose for the max level. Like a hundred fold or something.
At least, it used to. With a lower level in vanilla for the cap, who knows how the equation changed and how it would behave.
-----

I am still of the opinion that the Player's skills should not be the same as officer skills, and have personal ship skills be treated differently, bought with different skill points or something.
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Dal

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #122 on: July 04, 2021, 04:08:07 PM »

Though I'll still be updating Quality Captains, I think these are solid improvements across the board. I do have a couple modding questions:
* Will the tier/ult thresholds be modifiable? E.g., if I wanted the two combat ultimate skills to require more/fewer of the preceding skills, is that possible?
* Any chance the maintenance-reduction-per-dmod statmod could be value based rather than binary? I fear my attempts to nerf/buff that modifier are going to get messy ^^'
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Sutopia

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #123 on: July 04, 2021, 04:47:34 PM »

There's no need for a mod. You can just open setting.json and set the max level to whatever you want.
Hmm, I think 15 feels just about right here. If it's 16 then you'd possibly feel forced to pick two aptitudes and get both top-tier picks in them. I suppose if it was 20 it might be ok? But something about "you can decide to get a top-tier skill in every aptitude" doesn't feel right.

Would it make sense to have dynamic level limit? For instance, make it 20 for easy mode, but retain 15 for normal

There will always be a mod that raises the level limit high enough to get all the skills. The next version will be no different.

You guys have fundamental misunderstanding about what the question is about.
You can always gain unlimited power from mods. In one of my glitched release EWM gained 100x if it's intended bonus allowing tactical laser scarab to solo a Paragon.
No it's not about that, but overall "vanilla" balance, the "intended" way to play the game.

On top of that I think the easy mode bonuses can have a revisit before 1.0. It's been the same for the past versions and may not be up to date, for instance, colony things aren't in the bonus list.
It would also be fun to have a "hard" difficulty, if you're seeing what I'm going for. Starpoclypse concept can be fun, make existing factions more than well established, making player harder to survive. Normal is just too easy as player can easily exploit the system while AI can't. Heck, they're not even S-modding their ships aside from special bounties, which make no sense to me as player fleet with full S mods can easily crush just about anything aside from largest ordos. Even then the Radiant is getting a significant nerf to 60 DP, shrinking enemy ability to deploy by a huge margin, making it once again too easy (I'd imagine).
Tl;dr: I want an official hard mode.
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Thaago

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #124 on: July 04, 2021, 04:57:47 PM »

Well the first tick to hard mode is to turn on iron mode and make a commitment to not save scum. When I do that I find myself engaging a lot more with different game systems, even sometimes retreating out of a battle when it becomes apparent I'm not going to win but before taking heavy losses.
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SonnaBanana

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #125 on: July 04, 2021, 07:46:50 PM »

Any changes to Energy Weapon Mastery, Missile Spec and Long Range Spec?
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Vanshilar

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #126 on: July 04, 2021, 08:37:38 PM »

The problem for me isn't that personal combat skills can't compete with fleetwide combat skills, it's that personal combat skills can't compete with campaign/logistics skills. No personal combat skill, or officer for that matter, will allow my fleet to get +1 base burn on the campaign map, passively repair D-mods, give me +1 S-mod on my ships (which is very nice QoL on logistics ships), etc. The same pretty much goes for fleetwide combat skills in fact: No officer in the game is going to pick up Wolfpack Tactics for me, only I can do that, so unless I'm not going to be using any frigates at all what personal combat skill can compete with that? And after all is said and done what points are left to invest in personal combat skills? Unless I'm a skilled enough player to solo entire fleets on the wings of the Combat tree (and Neural Link), obviously, but, eh...I'm not :(.

Those are different dimensions of gameplay, QoL versus direct combat which is where "the rubber meets the road" in this game. If you spend time learning how to pilot a flagship and how the flagship can contribute to the battle, the combat skills are actually the most powerful. With my fleet (2 Dooms, 7 Furies), generally speaking my Doom flagship contributes about 35-40% of the total damage, while the other Doom contributes around 10-15%, and the 7 Furies combined make up the remainder -- so they're contributing on average around 6-7% each. My flagship contributes multiple times its "weight" in DP, and this is true regardless of if I'm piloting a Doom, an Aurora, a Medusa, etc. Not only that, the player can have a much better understanding of how the battle is progressing than the AI -- where some pressure needs to be exerted, or where the front line is collapsing and a ship needs to be rescued, whether or not you can go in and finish off a target or if it's too risky, etc. -- so the player has much more influence over the battle's success. QoL skills may make the game more convenient, but combat skills -- and the player's understanding of how combat works -- is what unlocks things which are not possible by any other means.

That would become another OP tax for carriers, like Expanded Deck Crew.  That would encourage carriers to over-specialize into fighters more than they already do (and not mount any weapons at all).

True, it would make already-limited OP even more difficult to spread out. Hmm. Maybe a skill instead then where fighters get some % of the combat and/or fleet benefits? So that it's still encouraged for carrier officers to take combat skills, and -- similar to Neural Link -- the more combat skills they take, the more powerful the fighters become. Like how a carrier's CR also affects fighters.

To be quite honest, you're just cheesing the battle size mechanics at that point - that's not something I can really worry about as a balancing concern. I think ideally the game would be played at battle size 400.

Granted, to a certain degree it's to funnel the incoming enemy fleet into a more manageable trickle. But it's also because my computer is literally from a decade ago (i3-2100 @3.1 GHz, 8GB RAM), so even with just about all the options turned down battles take a long time since they run at around 10-15 FPS for full fleet fights (i.e. vs Ordos fleets say). And that's vanilla, it gets slower once I start adding mods. So making the battle size bigger also makes battles take even longer with the additional ships.

Regardless of player computer limitations, though, it still seems like making Radiants 60 DP instead of 40 DP will make Remnant fights significantly easier, coupled with Best of the Best making it easier to get the full 60% of battle size. With a fixed battle size of 400, this means 4 Radiants instead of 6 Radiants at once, plus the player can field a full 240-DP fleet instead of a fleet of 200-220 DP (depending on how good they are about capturing objectives). Not necessarily a bad thing, depends on how easy or difficult you feel the endgame fights should be.

(By the way, I didn't really comment much on the skill system because it all looks pretty good -- the new tiers overcome issues with the current system pretty well, so it all comes down to what the specifics are when it's released, and experimenting with it.)

That wasn't the issue with it, though. The issue was it either feeling bad to use phase ships, or to use not phase ships, depending no whether you had the skill or not.

Hmm I didn't read about combining shields/phase into a single skill. However, this is probably a good thing, not just for the player character's skills, but for things like, cryopod officers, especially if they will be much more limited in the future -- if there's a single skill that gives benefit X if shields, benefit Y if phase, then that makes officers more usable regardless of what type of ship they're in.

The problem there is that even an amazing flagship can only be as good as the player is a pilot, and my piloting skills are...questionable at best.

Eh fortunately that's something any player can learn. I feel like how important a player feels the combat skills are scales pretty directly with how much they've invested in learning how to control their ship and how it can affect the overall tide of battle. It's the single most important thing you can do to make battles go your way, so without spending time learning how to fight, you're basically leaving one of the biggest resources you have on the table.

I'm sure different players have different philosophies, but for me, piloting the flagship is about performing a role within the fleet that I the player am good at but that the AI is bad at. After all, there's little reason to pilot a ship if the AI is going to be nearly just as effective at it anyway. In other words, it may be fun piloting a Paragon and watching it zap frigates all day, but if the AI does the same thing pretty much just as effectively, then I as the human pilot am not really contributing much more to the fight.

The AI is pretty bad at judging the overall "pace" of the fight, i.e. looking ahead and knowing that it's about to be overwhelmed, or that there are too many forces on the left flank and not enough on the right, etc. It's also not good at understanding the more local, "tactical" side of the battle; for example, it usually won't know if it's a good idea to run in and attack or not, or if there's an escape route if it gets overwhelmed, etc. I as the human understand this much better. So for the flagship I tend to pilot an extremely fast, hard-hitting ship, with too many weapons than the flux can bear. The goal is to overwhelm them before my flux bar maxes out, and then recharge as I make my way to the next target. In the meantime I'm also watching for how the rest of the ships are doing, so I know where my flagship needs to go next, whether to help concentrate attacks on a vulnerable ship, or to rush in and help tank and disrupt the enemy formation. Generally I start with Hammerhead then move on to Shrike, Medusa, then Aurora, but it varies from game to game.

This works best when the flagship has a bunch of combat skills to maximize how hard it can hit in a short amount of time, how fast it gets from point A to point B, how much damage it can take when needed, etc. That's where the combat skills really start multiplying in making the fleet be more effective as a whole.

Good guess, it'll be 20! (So will the Falcon(P), btw - another ship that's, to be honest, a bit overpowered - but also fun, and I don't want to change the ship itself.)

Aww, the Fury and Falcon (P) were the two best-performing fleet ships that I've found to handle multiple Ordos fleets. (My fleet composition consists of me piloting a fast, hard-hitting ship, like the Aurora or Doom, one or two other "big ships" like Doom, Aurora, Champion, Odyssey, Legion, etc., then "fleet ships" like Fury, Falcon (P), Hyperion, etc. that make up the bulk of the fleet.) In either case, they relied on Sabot pods and Xyphos fighters, which as a combination really shuts down Remnant fleets very well. The Fury won out because it could get 360 degree shields (the Falcon (P) seems to always be getting a tachyon lance up the 30 degree engine gap) and because it could equip the cryoblaster, which kills frigates very quickly. The Falcon (P), with its additional Sabot pods, handles bigger ships better. However the Fury seems to have an issue with plasma burning into hulks or other ships or something, occasionally I find it drifting flamed out into the enemy fleet at over 200 speed (shields up), which pretty much means death. Not sure if the plasma burn AI checks for whether or not hulks are in its path.

So yeah, it makes sense that both should get nerfed a bit by increasing the DP. However, 20 seems a bit much (since Eagle is 22), I'm not sure if it's that close to an Eagle; 18 (like an Apogee) sounds about right.

Would it also be possible to take a look at the Converted Hanger hullmod? I swear every time I try to fit it into a build the ship ends up sending one wave of fighters to die horribly against anything more threatening than a Mining Lasing with a bad cold, and after that fighters just seem to slowly come out piecemeal to die horribly one by one instead of all at once. Replacement rate is awful in general, and also drops so quickly as to be basically useless.

Maybe I'm just doing something wrong, but I've never managed to get the hullmod to justify it's own OP cost. Let stand the added 150% cost of fighters/200% cost of bombers.

If you're using Converted Hangar, think of the fighters as support, not main attack/artillery. For example, Converted Hangar with Xyphos works well. The Xyphos provides 2 ion beams and PD, and hang near your ship (support range of 0), so they won't go off dying. On a cruiser, this comes out to 38 OP (15 for Converted Hangar, 23 for the Xyphos). However, 2 ion beams cost 24 OP, plus the 400 flux to support them would cost another 40 OP, so you're really getting 64 OP's worth of ion beams plus PD. (Since fighters fire their weapons flux-free, from your ship's vantage point -- they have their own flux.) Combined with some kinetic weapons, this is very effective at shutting down the enemy's offenses; Furies with Sabot pods and Xyphos make up the bulk of my Remnant-farming fleet for this very reason.
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Sutopia

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #127 on: July 04, 2021, 09:15:21 PM »


Would it also be possible to take a look at the Converted Hanger hullmod? I swear every time I try to fit it into a build the ship ends up sending one wave of fighters to die horribly against anything more threatening than a Mining Lasing with a bad cold, and after that fighters just seem to slowly come out piecemeal to die horribly one by one instead of all at once. Replacement rate is awful in general, and also drops so quickly as to be basically useless.

Maybe I'm just doing something wrong, but I've never managed to get the hullmod to justify it's own OP cost. Let stand the added 150% cost of fighters/200% cost of bombers.

If you're using Converted Hangar, think of the fighters as support, not main attack/artillery. For example, Converted Hangar with Xyphos works well. The Xyphos provides 2 ion beams and PD, and hang near your ship (support range of 0), so they won't go off dying. On a cruiser, this comes out to 38 OP (15 for Converted Hangar, 23 for the Xyphos). However, 2 ion beams cost 24 OP, plus the 400 flux to support them would cost another 40 OP, so you're really getting 64 OP's worth of ion beams plus PD. (Since fighters fire their weapons flux-free, from your ship's vantage point -- they have their own flux.) Combined with some kinetic weapons, this is very effective at shutting down the enemy's offenses; Furies with Sabot pods and Xyphos make up the bulk of my Remnant-farming fleet for this very reason.

Xyphos suck because
A. they don't obey your orders in any capacity and would shoot at random stuff instead of intended targets
B. they don't benefit from ITU of your own so they can't really have synergy unless you are already running short range weapons
It's really waste of OP to use converted hangar for Xyphos. I'd get broadsword or even long bow.
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The Soldier

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #128 on: July 04, 2021, 09:38:50 PM »

(I need to look at the Drover, too; there's I think a bug involve in making it really underperform... hopefully the impression that carriers aren't good is not based on or at least heavily influenced by the Drover being weak now.)
I only use Drover for double Cobras. Rockets' red glare!
Speaking of these two things, the Drover's Reserve Deployment makes it so specifically bombers don't redeploy after going in for a rearm while the ship system is active. A Drover might be able to launch 4 Cobras with Reapers all at once, but it won't actually be able to re-launch any bombers until the ship system expires. This, if anything, really kills it's performance.

Xyphos suck because
A. they don't obey your orders in any capacity and would shoot at random stuff instead of intended targets
B. they don't benefit from ITU of your own so they can't really have synergy unless you are already running short range weapons
It's really waste of OP to use converted hangar for Xyphos. I'd get broadsword or even long bow.
Unfortunately the result of poor vanilla Support fighter behavior. Support fighters completely ignore the player's target (even when set to Engage), so trying to get them to shoot the right thing is like trying to herd cats. Hopefully this could be addressed...?
« Last Edit: July 04, 2021, 09:42:05 PM by The Soldier »
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Lucky33

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #129 on: July 04, 2021, 09:48:03 PM »

Another thing is buggering me.

Now we do have some means to implement "numerical superiority" doctrine.

Some.

There is a fleet size limit and I'm pretty much sure that x1,5 fleet is currently unfeasible. However, progression wise, enemy fleet size getting to max size pretty fast. And even beyond that due to capability to stack several fleets in the single battle. This kinda limits the whole "numerical superiority" thing. You do have deployment advantage but overall it is not really important since enemy can and will have more ships. For the most part they will be of better quality than your pentadmoded junkers.
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Deshara

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #130 on: July 04, 2021, 11:53:17 PM »

<looks at Bulk Transport> (I actually kind of want to replace that one with something more interesting; right now it's definitely a bench-warmer.)

just as long as you leave the +1 burn to non-militarized ships somewhere! it's so handy, not having to put militarized subsystems on every civilian ship that I get just to keep my fleet from getting a -10% to burn rate just bc im dragging a kite behind us that I'd just salvaged. Really actually when you think about it, that specific part of that specific skill is extremely over-valueable for small ships since any large civilian ship you'll want to militarize anyway just for sensor profile purposes -- it would be a prime candidate to be added to... huh... i just realized that both second tier leadership skills are frigate skills. But yeah, anyway, prime candidate to be added to a frigate-specific skill. Or onto anything that shares a skill tier with auxilliary supports. Or maybe put it on auxilliary supports, since the skill's current affect gets diminished by over-using auxilliary supports and being allowed to get half of the campaign-level affect of militarized subsystems without having to dilute auxilliary support's bonuses might be helpful (as it is I never use the skill despite using an auxilliary or militarized civilian fleet for that exact reason)
also, i need to say this at some point; the second line of the mechanical affects of auxilliary support's description, the "maximum at 5" part? I have no clue what that means. Same with Bulk Transport & Weapon Drills. I dont have that issue with energy weapons mastery skill tho, or fighter uplink. I think something about being asked to divide out the affect against deployment points, my brain just kinda pops & deflates -- DP's are already such an esoteric point that I've never in my 5+ years of playing the game really wrapped my brain around thinking about the statistic in any useful manner. Maybe it's just me, maybe not, but IMO as is it might as well be telling me that the skill affect gets reduced in proportion to the phase of jupiter's 3rd moon IRL -- at that point my brain just goes "okay so it's randomly worse sometimes & I'll never know why, got it". Doesn't hit as cleanly as missile spec's' "+100% missile ammo" or even fighter uplinks' "+25% fighter speed for up to 8 wings", or energy weapons mastery telling me that it lerps from 100% bonus to 0% between 600 & 1000 range
edit: thinking about it, it being fine that energy weapons mastery is vague & just lets you figure out on your own what the math must be by telling you the important parts ("does _ at _ range, does nothing at _ range"), it seems like the problem could be solved by being a bit more vague in some of the less readable abilities then letting the player expand it for a full breakdown of the math involved with the f1 key. Could also apply to stuff like coordinated manuevers & ECM skills -- the big block of greyed out text at the bottom, I've either never read (not likely) or never fit it into my brain (much more likely) as the mathematical specifics are far less useful to me than "gives up to +10% weapon range if the enemy doesnt have this skill & u do". ECM's description is already really brief, it could be summed up with "Every deployed combat ship grants +2% to ECM rating of fleet; the fleet with less ECM gets up to 10% reduced weapons range [hullmod stuff],
[line break,]
press f1 for more info" and then what is now greyed out text.
In fact, a lot of skills could probably use an expanded tooltip to move some of the noise to. Like Helmsmanship is IMO the golden standard of what a skill description should strive to look like; readable at a glance, instantly understood, the eye isnt pulled around. If I were dev for 2 minutes & had to improve the game slightly in some way in that time or DIE, I'd move the greyed out text in the leadership tier 4 skills to f1 -- if not remove them entirely since that information is available on the officer management screen. And then I'd die bc it'd definitely take me more than 2 minutes to do that
in fact, it appears every combat skill description is what Id describe as Gold Standard, and all but 3 of the leadership skills have either extra information or a mathmatical breakdown that could be either pared down or shunted to an expanded tooltip. Actually it looks like tech & industry are the same way too -- it kind of shows that the combat tree is (IIRC) the oldest tree; its way cleaner
« Last Edit: July 05, 2021, 12:38:00 AM by Deshara »
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oooh_senpai

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #131 on: July 05, 2021, 04:19:31 AM »

Well the first tick to hard mode is to turn on iron mode and make a commitment to not save scum. When I do that I find myself engaging a lot more with different game systems, even sometimes retreating out of a battle when it becomes apparent I'm not going to win but before taking heavy losses.
I actually learned to use vanilla ability to engage  & hit - disengage - engage again with iron mode. Makes you use more advanced tactics than usual.

But about skill changes: why not to add ability to give orders to your flagship without use of command points? It will help with neurolink i think, for ex if you wanna to make your ship finish the enemy while you are transmitting to other linked ship. Giving free orders to the linked ship would be nice too, and even without neurolink ability to do this can be helpful (for people who don't like piloting for example). The only problem is to split usual and flagship orders, so other ships from your fleet will ignore flagship's orders and treat this enemy as usual. So if enemy doesn't have and orders for it and you order your flagship to eliminate it, others from your fleet treat this enemy as if they don't have any orders for it, but any non-flagship orders overwrite flagship's orders.
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TaLaR

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #132 on: July 05, 2021, 04:48:04 AM »

Well the first tick to hard mode is to turn on iron mode and make a commitment to not save scum. When I do that I find myself engaging a lot more with different game systems, even sometimes retreating out of a battle when it becomes apparent I'm not going to win but before taking heavy losses.

Ironman makes you play safe. Save/load allows you to play at peak performance. Just more fun for me. An Afflictor killing a cruiser/capital is always only a split second timing mistake away from exploding itself.
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SCC

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #133 on: July 05, 2021, 07:05:38 AM »

Well the first tick to hard mode is to turn on iron mode and make a commitment to not save scum. When I do that I find myself engaging a lot more with different game systems, even sometimes retreating out of a battle when it becomes apparent I'm not going to win but before taking heavy losses.
Depends on the person. If I couldn't save scum, then I would abuse everything to stack the cards in my favour or do the safest available activity, ignoring whether anything I do is actually fun. While you can't die in Starsector, you can certainly waste time.

There is a fleet size limit and I'm pretty much sure that x1,5 fleet is currently unfeasible. However, progression wise, enemy fleet size getting to max size pretty fast. And even beyond that due to capability to stack several fleets in the single battle. This kinda limits the whole "numerical superiority" thing. You do have deployment advantage but overall it is not really important since enemy can and will have more ships. For the most part they will be of better quality than your pentadmoded junkers.
Thankfully we can modify the ship cap pretty easily, though the artificial limitation of how many ships you can recover at once is still going to be annoying.

Grievous69

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Re: Skill Changes, Part 1
« Reply #134 on: July 05, 2021, 10:12:38 AM »

Sorry if this has been answered already but we're getting part 2 before the next month right? From what I've read the new new skill system is pretty much complete, and you just weren't able to put everything into a single blog post without it being a huge wall of text.
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