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Starsector 0.95a is out! (03/26/21); Blog post: Skill Changes, Part 2 (07/15/21)

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Author Topic: Combat Readiness  (Read 86544 times)

Alex

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Combat Readiness
« on: February 19, 2013, 11:11:22 AM »

Blog post here.
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WhiteAvatar

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2013, 11:32:49 AM »

It was a very interesting read and I'll be looking forward to how "combat readiness" will impact the way Starsector unfolds. Very clever way of tackling the frigate superiority problem indeed!

P.s I'm glad I decided to give Starsector a go, the frequent updates and patches really helps keep up confidence in this project among us supporters
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Iscariot

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2013, 11:33:50 AM »

Yayyyyy!
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The idea is that the various tech levels represent different - not "better" - ways to do things.

Psiyon

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2013, 11:45:25 AM »

I love the idea behind the mechanic, it definitely creates an excellent bridge between the campaign and combat. However, some of the combat-side effects concern me slightly, namely the effect this has on frigates: about how much time would it take for a frigate to go from its peak readiness to "totally absolutely useless"?

Actually, let me rephrase this and ask a more general question: how do the various levels of CR translate into combat effectiveness? Would 100% correspond to a ship being manned by completely elite crew with full supplies and HP? And how ineffective will ships with 0% CR be? Totally useless, or just significantly impaired?
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arcibalde

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #4 on: February 19, 2013, 11:50:47 AM »

Intriguing indeed  :D

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Alex

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2013, 12:00:10 PM »

It was a very interesting read and I'll be looking forward to how "combat readiness" will impact the way Starsector unfolds. Very clever way of tackling the frigate superiority problem indeed!

P.s I'm glad I decided to give Starsector a go, the frequent updates and patches really helps keep up confidence in this project among us supporters

Thanks, glad you found it interesting!

I love the idea behind the mechanic, it definitely creates an excellent bridge between the campaign and combat. However, some of the combat-side effects concern me slightly, namely the effect this has on frigates: about how much time would it take for a frigate to go from its peak readiness to "totally absolutely useless"?

Actually, let me rephrase this and ask a more general question: how do the various levels of CR translate into combat effectiveness? Would 100% correspond to a ship being manned by completely elite crew with full supplies and HP? And how ineffective will ships with 0% CR be? Totally useless, or just significantly impaired?

It's subject to playtesting etc, but at the moment (i.e. almost guaranteed to be different by release):

A 100% CR ship is roughly 10-15% more effective than baseline (speed, damage taken) and has elite-level autofire aim.
A 0% CR ship is about 10-15% worse than baseline in those stats, can't aim very well, and has serious malfunction issues. The malfunction issues (which currently kick in at 20% CR) are what has the most effect on performance.

As to the impact of malfunctions, let me put it this way: a 0% Vigilance has a tough time taking down a wing of Talons 1-1, though it can do it. So, not totally useless by a long shot, especially in larger ships where the randomness of malfunctions is mitigated by large numbers of weapons and engine nozzles, but definitely very impaired.

(More detail on malfunctions: it's a % chance, checked on average once every second a weapon is firing/cooling down or an engine is "on" (turning doesn't count). At 0%, it's something like a 10% chance for weapons and 5% for engines. Again, exact values will almost certainly change.)

Right now, it takes a bit over 10 minutes to go from "peak" to 0 if starting at 100%, which feels a bit too long. An important point is that it stays at its starting CR for a few minutes before it starts dropping, and the CR cost applied after battle is the higher of the deployment cost or the actual amount of CR used during the battle. Will have to see just how it shakes out, though.

This is all modifiable per ship, though right now I painted it with a pretty broad brush and those particular stats are the same on all frigates. I suspect the Hyperion is going to end up losing CR much faster than other frigates, for example.
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Psiyon

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2013, 12:07:00 PM »

Ah, okay, that's pretty much what I was hoping for. Honestly, I think it would be a bit more meaningful if the penalties and benefits were a bit more spread out, such as -+25% for peak and zero, but at the same time, make it so it's fairly difficult to be at 100% or absolute zero. But as you said, there's a ton of playtesting to do, so I'll leave you to make that decision yourself :P

Still, I love the idea, and I can't wait to mess around with it. Any chance of new skills that modify the combat readiness of ships?
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Gothars

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2013, 12:10:36 PM »

You seem to have a knack for this game design thing, Alex ;)  That's an intriguing mechanic. Especially the initiative it gives to engage an enemy with matching forces and thus avoid a boring battle.

One thing that's not quite clear to me: Is it common for (non-frigate) ships to loose CR during a battle, depending on its actions? Or is this something that happens generally after battle? Both mechanics seems to be planned, but how are they weighted?

The frigate change is interesting, but narrows down their tactical diversity a lot. Is a frigate in a defensive escort role useless now? The obvious One possible answer would be frigate combat-maintenance on carriers. They are an easy target and their destruction interrupts any lone-frigate kiting, but they allow support frigates to stay active along with a big fleet.

« Last Edit: February 19, 2013, 12:14:06 PM by Gothars »
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FloW

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #8 on: February 19, 2013, 12:13:35 PM »

I love the tags of the post  ;D
Will low-tech units regain CR faster? Will the same apply to weapons, so that high-tech stuff gets fixed slower?
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The Soldier

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2013, 12:23:39 PM »

Radiation Storms?  Perhaps I should reconsider flying into the sun to avoid enemies. xD

Overall, I like the new CR mechanic. :) I feel as if it's going to connect the battlefield to the campaign map very nicely.
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mendonca

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2013, 12:27:33 PM »

Sounds jolly clever indeed! Excited to see the final implementation.
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Alex

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2013, 12:45:54 PM »

Ah, okay, that's pretty much what I was hoping for. Honestly, I think it would be a bit more meaningful if the penalties and benefits were a bit more spread out, such as -+25% for peak and zero, but at the same time, make it so it's fairly difficult to be at 100% or absolute zero. But as you said, there's a ton of playtesting to do, so I'll leave you to make that decision yourself :P

It really depends. If you give a few 10% bonuses to various things, all of a sudden it can get really powerful - moreso than a 25% percent bonus to any one thing. But yeah, this needs a *lot* of playtesting.

Any chance of new skills that modify the combat readiness of ships?

Most likely. Right now, combat aptitude raises the max CR of the piloted ship. So for now that only affects the flagship, but should come into play more when officers are in the game.

One thing that's not quite clear to me: Is it common for (non-frigate) ships to loose CR during a battle, depending on its actions? Or is this something that happens generally after battle? Both mechanics seems to be planned, but how are they weighted?

As of now, only frigates lose CR during the fight. But the idea of EMP weapons knocking down CR (and eventually pushing a ship into the "malfunction" zone) is interesting. Might give that a try, though it may make EMP weapons too strong.

The frigate change is interesting, but narrows down their tactical diversity a lot. Is a frigate in a defensive escort role useless now? The obvious One possible answer would be frigate combat-maintenance on carriers. They are an easy target and their destruction interrupts any lone-frigate kiting, but they allow support frigates to stay active along with a big fleet.

Hmm. I get what you're saying about carriers, it makes sense mechanics-wise, but seems a little arbitrary - after all, the specialized equipment carriers have seems unrelated to, say, letting the power junctions inside a frigate cool off. It'd be tough to sell this visually in way that made it clear what's going on. Kind of reminds me of munitions ships, actually. Neat idea, but kind of clunky-seeming in practice.

Even if a frigate only gets several minutes of peak effectiveness, that's still not "useless". Once again, though, will have to see how it plays out. I think different tactics might emerge - for example, I can see switching out frigates in escort duty as a battle goes on, vs deploying them all at once early for a stronger skirmishing force. Assuming increasing frigate speeds more or less across the board works out, I think their tactical role will change rather than shrink.

That reminds me... there are actually some combat changes I want to talk about, too. But I'll save that for the next post :)

I love the tags of the post  ;D

Ah, someone noticed!

Sounds jolly clever indeed! Excited to see the final implementation.

Hopefully not *too* clever, though. Especially not by half :)
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nonomo4

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2013, 12:59:15 PM »

What effects will CR have on fighters or will CR overlook them?
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Cycerin

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2013, 12:59:56 PM »

Very clever. I'm looking forward to see how this shakes things up - all these elements that add tension and opportunity cost to the game are going to make the eventual exploration part of the game even better too.
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Dreyven

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Re: Combat Readiness
« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2013, 01:06:48 PM »

It sounds like a really good Idea.

Just make sure you get the recharge right, over time and with supply cost seems like the perfect choice.
Important is that High tech ships need a HUGE amount of "CR Points" which they loose at a significantly faster choice.
So that they are really expensive in supplies and if you do decide to just use 1 Hyperion, you will run out of supplies after 1-2 battles.
Or, maybe an even higher cost, this might give "Freighter" type ships a real Position inside fleets.

I also like the possibility to give each ship a specific "low on CR" Talent, similiar to ship systems this will make ships much more unique.
A Hyperion below 25% CR could get it's shieldwidth reduced by a certain amount, or it might get -70 speed.

Quote
Hmm. I get what you're saying about carriers, it makes sense mechanics-wise, but seems a little arbitrary - after all, the specialized equipment carriers have seems unrelated to, say, letting the power junctions inside a frigate cool off. It'd be tough to sell this visually in way that made it clear what's going on. Kind of reminds me of munitions ships, actually. Neat idea, but kind of clunky-seeming in practice

What about assigning this role to Freighters?

Maybe Firgates get worse in Combat because they run out of supplies and every repair is just jury rigged (and they can't "turn" the multi purpose supplies into what they need while they are in combat)
This means Freighters could get a new system wich allows them to drop a supply crate (3 times per battle?)
Once the Frigate picks up the Crate, it stops moving and can't do so for a certain while and after that it gets some CR points back and can head back into the battle
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