Fractal Softworks Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length

Author Topic: What if support doctrine was different?  (Read 1249 times)

BigBrainEnergy

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
What if support doctrine was different?
« on: August 13, 2022, 10:59:32 PM »

What if you got to pick the skills for SD instead of reducing the ship's DP by 20 percent?

This is not at all suggestion but more of a shower thought. Would it be too powerful, or useless? What would you do with it?
Logged
TL;DR deez nuts

CrashToDesktop

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 3875
  • Quartermaster
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2022, 11:20:00 PM »

Giving every ship Target Analysis, Gunnery Implants, and Ballistic Mastery? That sounds quite powerful.
Logged
Quote from: Trylobot
I am officially an epoch.
Quote from: Thaago
Note: please sacrifice your goats responsibly, look up the proper pronunciation of Alex's name. We wouldn't want some other project receiving mystic power.

Amoebka

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1203
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2022, 11:43:02 PM »

At the very least you might want to prohibit tier 5 skills. Missile spec on every ship might be a problem. Then again, you can use officered Gryphons instead, so maybe it's fine.

I like the DP discount, but I hate the skill selection. It's heavily biased towards low-tech SO builds, and basically does nothing for a lot of ships you would otherwise want to run with SD. My suggestion is simply changing the skills to TA, PD and gunnery. Not too overpowered, but at least not biased towards any particular build.
Logged

michail

  • Lieutenant
  • **
  • Posts: 88
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2022, 12:19:15 AM »

You've nerd-sniped me into making a mini-mod for this. Sources are here, a built version is attached. No in-game UI, edit "data/config/supportdoctrine/config.json". The testing was minimal, so beware.
Logged

BigBrainEnergy

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2022, 12:29:18 AM »

At the very least you might want to prohibit tier 5 skills. Missile spec on every ship might be a problem. Then again, you can use officered Gryphons instead, so maybe it's fine.
Yeah that's fair.

I like the DP discount, but I hate the skill selection. It's heavily biased towards low-tech SO builds, and basically does nothing for a lot of ships you would otherwise want to run with SD. My suggestion is simply changing the skills to TA, PD and gunnery. Not too overpowered, but at least not biased towards any particular build.
Combat endurance and helmsman-ship are decent generic skills that any ship could use, but damage control is pretty niche. It's probably the weakest combat skill overall, as even on lowtech ships I prioritize armour and damage and range and speed and then maybe I get down to damage control if I feel it's more useful than point defense on this particular build (which it typically isn't).

Alex's reasoning for choosing it is fine, though. The ships are weaker so you can expect them to take hull damage more often, and given that SD is already strong I can only imagine it would be overpowered if we swapped damage control for target analysis.

You've nerd-sniped me into making a mini-mod for this. Sources are here, a built version is attached. No in-game UI, edit "data/config/supportdoctrine/config.json". The testing was minimal, so beware.
Very nice! I might have to play around with that a bit.
Logged
TL;DR deez nuts

Amoebka

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1203
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2022, 12:49:06 AM »

SD is only "strong" if you combine it with Derelict Ops and spam something degenerate. For its intended use case - running 4-5 unofficered destroyers/frigates - it's very disappointing and completely eclipsed by Automated Ships.
Logged

BigBrainEnergy

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2022, 01:42:26 AM »

SD is only "strong" if you combine it with Derelict Ops and spam something degenerate. For its intended use case - running 4-5 unofficered destroyers/frigates - it's very disappointing and completely eclipsed by Automated Ships.
I doubt that's the intended use when I've had a lot of success doing the reverse - putting my officers in frigates/destroyers with wolfpack tactics and running unofficered cruisers.

"But officers are a strength multiplier so you should put them in the bigger ships."

You're saving like 1 dp on frigates with SD when you could save 4 dp on most cruisers, and they work just fine with CE and helmsmanship, plus the 20% extra damage frigates get is massive. I guess it depends on the cruiser, though. I know Apogees and Champions do great but I haven't tried others yet.
Logged
TL;DR deez nuts

Amoebka

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1203
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2022, 01:51:35 AM »

You're saving like 1 dp on frigates with SD when you could save 4 dp on most cruisers
Proportionally you are still saving 20% on anything. In fact, destroyers and frigates tend to have better savings because of the way rounding works. 8 DP Shrike becomes 6 DP (25% discount), 22 DP Eagle becomes 18 DP (18% discount).

If you are running a dedicated wolfpack, why not use automated ships instead? More officered frigates for you that way.
Logged

BigBrainEnergy

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 551
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2022, 02:04:42 AM »

I think you kinda missed the point. Proportionally it is always 20% but let's say you're planning on running 10 omens and 10 apogees. If you put the officers in the apogees you save 10 dp on the omens, but if you put the officers in the omens you save 40 dp on the apogees and the omens benefit from wolfpack tactics + coordinated maneuvers. Sure the apogees miss out on target analysis and missile spec, but it's worth it for the extra volume of ships you can cram onto the battlefield.

On the subject of AI ships, I really don't like how glimmers always get themselves killed in late game fights when I can build normal frigates that don't. Radiants are cool though.
Logged
TL;DR deez nuts

Thaago

  • Global Moderator
  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 6816
  • Harpoon Affectionado
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2022, 08:37:02 AM »

I think SD where you could choose the skills (say a popup like the AI cores) would be moderately too strong without some tweaks, but not unworkable (it would just need those tweaks). As others have said, the current skills are broadly useful to ships of all size classes and types but don't have any "wow" skills.

The part of Damage Control I value most isn't the hull damage reduction (which is nice for bigger ships) but the 50% fast weapon/engine repairs. A lot of late game enemies can bring serious EMP burst and I want my sidekicks to keep shooting.

In my opinion SD is the strongest overall skill and unlike many other skills is useful early game as well as late. A leadership build that ends with SD gives unofficered ships: +30% CR (10% to offense, defense, top speed, fighter repair, and autoaim), +30% more top speed, +50% maneuvering, +60s PPT, -25% PPT degredation, -25% hull damage, +50% engine/weapon repair, and a ~20%(rounding) discount for deployment/fleet skill scaling! With those bonuses well built player unofficered ships keep up with officered AI ships while also being cheaper.

In terms of "best" uses... well, lots of them. Numbers are really good so getting more ships on the field than the number of officers is extremely powerful almost no matter what. Carriers are really good (speed + CR! Fighters inherit CR so get the speed/damage/defense/autoaim bonuses). Frigate through cruiser supporting ships are good, depending on how close to 30 ships the player is getting, and some offer great rounding benefits (Enforcer for 7! Shrike for 6!). Pretty much the only ships I don't think are very good value are ships that benefit disproportionately from officers: Gryphons come to mind, and so do phase frigates/scarabs for wolfpack (but on the other hand, if officers are being spent on wolfpack, that leaves many "free" DP which SD boosts and discounts!).
Logged

Vanshilar

  • Captain
  • ****
  • Posts: 495
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2022, 10:23:39 AM »

I think Support Doctrine is already borderline too strong as it is, being able to choose which skills you get would make it way overpowered.

The biggest benefit of granting those skills is that they are unlimited; if you have 30 ships without officers, it's granting 30 Combat Endurance, Helmsmanship, and Damage Control. I always take Combat Endurance on all officers anyway, and I use Helmsmanship on them 90% of the time as well. So it's granting two skills that I'd be taking on officers anyway.

Officers are strong, but they also have a significant cost: they decrease your XP bonus. A level 6 officer counts as 30 DP for the purposes of the XP bonus, so if you have 10 level 6 officers with your 300-DP fleet, those officers just cut your XP gain in half. I usually plan for fleets to run at around 400-500% XP bonus against [REDACTED] fleets (depending on if the fleet is built for single, double, or triple [REDACTED] fleets), so whether or not to use Support Doctrine or officers is a crucial decision point. Support Doctrine means I get to put about 25% more ships on the field, which also means 25% more DP cost for the XP bonus (the DP reduction doesn't affect the XP bonus), versus officers where each officer will cost me 26.25 DP (if level 5) or 30 DP (if level 6) to my total DP for XP bonus purposes.

For that decision point, *if* I use Support Doctrine, since I almost always take Combat Endurance and Helmsmanship anyway, then it's really a matter of whether or not the other 3 or 4 skills for an officer is going to worth the DP cost for XP bonus purposes. For some ships, it clearly does. For example, an officered Gryphon does around 75% more overall damage throughout the battle as an unofficered (with Support Doctrine) Gryphon, with the biggest contributor being Missile Spec. Hyperions also benefit a lot from officers. For others, even though officers do definitely help, it may not to the same extent, in which case Support Doctrine may be better.

So in that sense I think both Amoebka and BigBrainEnergy are correct: Support Doctrine can be used to help unofficered big ships, or unofficered small ships. It really depends on the particular ships (their power "ceiling" when using officers, versus their power "floor" when not) and the use case scenario. Each way of using it can be successful.

In fact, destroyers and frigates tend to have better savings because of the way rounding works. 8 DP Shrike becomes 6 DP (25% discount), 22 DP Eagle becomes 18 DP (18% discount).

It really depends on the ships. Any ships that have DP of 3, 4, 8, 9, 13, 14, 18, 19 etc. get better savings. Any ships that have DP of 1, 2, 6, 7, 11, 12, 16, 17 etc. get less savings. Smaller ships do get proportionally better or worse savings though (so that uh Hound becomes 2 instead of 3 OP). But for example, Falcon XIV (becomes 11 instead of 14 DP) and Apogee (becomes 14 instead of 18 DP) are some cruisers who get more benefit from it than average.
Logged

Kos135

  • Commander
  • ***
  • Posts: 146
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2022, 02:11:15 PM »

I like Support Doctrine the way it is. The 3 non-elite skills provided make sense for the typical crew to have (Helmsmanship, Damage Control, Combat Endurance) and the reduction in DP is nice. It allows you to field a large number of non-officered line ships and goes particularly well with frigates due to the free Combat Endurance.
Logged
You cannot trick an honest man, only a villain will fall for it.

SCC

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 3896
    • View Profile
Re: What if support doctrine was different?
« Reply #12 on: August 15, 2022, 02:20:36 AM »

I wish DPs weren't rounded, so that rounding doesn't influence player's decisions on what to field. The game definitely can handle fractional DP, or at least it used to.