Fractal Softworks Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length

Author Topic: Fighting for Control - Suggestions to Improve Fighter Doctrine Gameplay  (Read 202 times)


  • Ensign
  • *
  • Posts: 26
    • View Profile

In the narrative, one of the aspects that limit the number of wings a ship gets to deploy is the ships ability to command those fighters, not just the number of actual decks and autoforges.

But we don't control the fighters in the game, and it can be really frustrating. Perhaps I would want my emp capable fighters to target one ship, and the HE armed ones to go after that un-shielded target?

First, let me fully acknowledge that I am fond of how fighters used to be, before - where commands could be issued to them on the command layer. That said, the current implementation has some really fun aspects as well! :)

We need a way to assign fighters to specific targets, behaviors and tasks and I have three suggestions for how that might work.
They aren't mutually exclusive and sort of build on each other:

1. Allow carriers to set targets on a per fighter basis. When a target is set, instead of the usual hud, a much less detail hud is shown, showing the wing, and how many fighters remain. Quick easy control, and precise clear communication of what fighters are attacking/escorting which target.

2. When slotting a fighter into a slot, each slot could have a selectable role. Want your interceptors to act like support wings? No sweat; the AI will now work based of your commands, and not based of the singular vision of the blueprint loving bastards over at HQ - what do they really know about war after all?

3. Just like weapons, list the fighter wings in the hud in combat. When a wing is toggled using it's corresponding number, it switches between modes, such as engage, intercept harass, screen, and escort. Each with their own unique AI styles.

One interesting aspect of all this, is that just like some weapons are hard coded to perform only certain roles, creating a clear identity, there are also weapons that excel precisely because they can take on multiple roles.
Fighters could benefit greatly from a similar meta - what makes a good fighter would not be just it's stats and capabilities.
It's ability to change behavior at the toggle of a command; being able to undertake certain tactical tasks, would be an interesting factor to weigh when fitting your carriers with wings.

I often find my fighters aren't doing enough when they are "regrouping" and wishing I could order them to screen me.
Or I find my interceptors are going after a fighter wing, when I really want them to focus on the two frigates chewing up my flank.

Finally, completely aside from all of the above - I think that the game really needs a dedicated escort option for the command layer that allows the player to assign a carrier to escort another ship using it's fighters.

Just the five cents of a fighter doctrine freak! ;D