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Author Topic: Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - L6 06-Dec-2020 Bag Of Tricks  (Read 1636590 times)

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2730 on: June 26, 2016, 05:35:05 am »
I've generally found most interceptions to be brutal and short - the Crab just allows you to make sure the brutality is focused their direction.  If you invest in air combat properly though, it'll pay you back nicely, especially when those peacekeeping missions show up.  A Crab plus practically any two interceptors will take lighter military vessels, and for fighters + terror ships, an interceptor dedicated to Lancers can outrange them, leaving for easy clean up. The mid-game interceptions are all about figuring out what gives you the advantage, then leveraging it.  The payoff is teching to the Dragon and powering through everything else.

Offline Rince Wind

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2731 on: June 26, 2016, 12:45:03 pm »
The Kraken alone can down most military craft already with its 3 heavy guns. Of you don't mind downtime of course.

Offline Dioxine

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2732 on: June 26, 2016, 01:41:19 pm »
The air combat is anything but balanced, but at least it offers several alternatives, several challenges and some payoff (I hope). Fighters armed with dual Lancers used to dominate the game, as it's the longest-range weapon. Then the idea of 'tank' appeared, which is quite natural concept for jrpg-like model of air combat (a skewed one, I'd say, since 1 ship can protect 3 others).
However, if you comment on the air combat, always clarify what diff level are you using. At highest diff enemy ships, especially the military ones, can dish out at least thrice as much punishment as on the easiest diff (re-fire rate for Battleship and many of its ilk is 23-46 sec on easiest diff, and - if my calcs are correct - 7-14 sec on the highest diff, if OXC is faithful to the original in that matter).
« Last Edit: June 26, 2016, 01:43:28 pm by Dioxine »

Offline karadoc

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2733 on: June 26, 2016, 02:16:22 pm »
I've recently got the Bonaventura; but I'm having a weird problem with it...   I can't find my spare equipment during ground missions!

I have often thought that it sucks how vulnerable the spare equipment is, just lying on the ground where it can be easily blown up by a stray rocket; but now that its hidden away somewhere I'm realising how much I rely on being able to access it. In my previous mission, I ran out of ammo during a Reticulan base raid; and in my current mission, I'm pinned down by some heavily armoured enemies that I wasn't equipped to face. I'd usually just grab a more powerful weapon from the equipment pile, but I can't find the pile!

Is this a bug? Is the equipment hidden somewhere? Or is this a new feature of the Bonaventura, designed to protect the equipment?

Offline Dioxine

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2734 on: June 26, 2016, 02:29:28 pm »
It's secured against being blown up now. Look your ship over more thoroughly before running here in tears, lol (jk) :) Protip: use minimap, your best friend in identifying friend from foe, finding loot and avoiding landmines :)

Offline karadoc

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2735 on: June 26, 2016, 02:53:22 pm »
Wow. ok. I thought I'd checked every tile of the ship...  I didn't notice that there was a secret room with an automatic door!

That is a much safer spot for the equipment. And thanks for helping me find it. :) That protip is strong. I rarely use the minimap in most cases, but it certainly helped here.

Offline karadoc

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2736 on: June 27, 2016, 02:38:40 am »
The air combat is anything but balanced, but at least it offers several alternatives, several challenges and some payoff (I hope). Fighters armed with dual Lancers used to dominate the game, as it's the longest-range weapon. Then the idea of 'tank' appeared, which is quite natural concept for jrpg-like model of air combat (a skewed one, I'd say, since 1 ship can protect 3 others).
However, if you comment on the air combat, always clarify what diff level are you using. At highest diff enemy ships, especially the military ones, can dish out at least thrice as much punishment as on the easiest diff (re-fire rate for Battleship and many of its ilk is 23-46 sec on easiest diff, and - if my calcs are correct - 7-14 sec on the highest diff, if OXC is faithful to the original in that matter).
(I'm playing on the second hardest difficulty.)

I'm currently thinking that the need / payoff of air combat might be too small in the early to mid game. A large research and money investment is required just to get off the ground, and missiles and heavy weapon ammo is expensive to supply. If you do shoot down some ships, and successfully complete the ground assaults, the resources do pay for themselves - but that's only if you have the ability to do the missions and claim the rewards.

I'm finding that I've got plenty of missions without needing to shoot down anything. There are lots of landed ships, enemy bases, progroms, and mini-missions. My ground forces are stretched (I've got about 30 injured soldiers, and 10 more ready to fight); and my vaults are already full of loot. I don't need the additional resources from the crashes, and I don't want to build more barracks to hire more hands to do the missions anyway.

In the previous versions, early-game air combat was almost a necessity. It was possible to shoot down ships right from day 1; and since there were no mini-missions, the crashes were a major source of income. It isn't like that now. Air combat is an expensive and risky optional extra whose payoff is dwarfed by what we're getting for free. Shooting down peacekeeping missions is kind of attractive, but those missions are usually run by fairly strong enemy ships - and so it isn't a strong option until we get better air-combat tech anyway.

I've got one suggestion which may help adjust that balance. The suggestion is to give successful ground assault missions on landed ships a chance of generating crackdowns. (ie. if you defeat all enemies on a landed ship, the ship's faction may choose to do a crackdown mission.) I see three main reasons for making this change:
  • It makes sense from a role-play point of view. Destroying the craft and crew of a landed ship is just as damaging as shooting it out of the sky; so a crackdown is equally warranted.
  • It incentivises shooting down civilian ships in the early game rather than risking crackdown from landed factional ships.
  • It creates a need to shoot down crackdown Sentry ships when they do come looking for you.

On the other hand, it would make the early game a bit harder. If early-game crackdowns are going to be a problem for balance, then perhaps the crackdown chance could apply only to medium or larger ships; or perhaps they should only attempt a crackdown if the player's reputation is above a certain threshold.

Offline khade

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2737 on: June 27, 2016, 03:32:22 am »
I assume that the crackdowns not applying to landed ships is due to them having no clue who did it, there aren't any survivors at that point to say who you are and no maydays from a crashing ship, the ship and crew just go silent.

Maybe ransomed crew could give information, especially if your hands are careless with information(which they likely are), so perhaps heavy ransoming might lead to small crackdowns, with research related to actually keeping hidden lowering and eventually removing that chance.

Incidentally, any chance of there being different sized crackdowns based on how big a threat they actually think you are?
« Last Edit: June 27, 2016, 03:37:40 am by khade »

Offline Dioxine

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2738 on: June 27, 2016, 02:13:18 pm »
Incidentally, any chance of there being different sized crackdowns based on how big a threat they actually think you are?

Sadly crackdowns cannot really be tweaked; only dice roll to spawn them. Once it's spawned, it goes its usual way. By the way, there is no way to spawn crackdown due to ground assault.
However, I don't think proportional response makes much sense anyway. "There's no kill like overkill".

Offline legionof1

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2739 on: June 27, 2016, 06:05:59 pm »
Doesn't sound like very much has changed in the air game then. It's still a matter of targets of opportunity. It only really worth chasing things that contain something high value.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2740 on: June 27, 2016, 08:30:17 pm »
I guess at this point the best way to change the air game significantly would be to overhaul the mechanics completely, or at least make UFOs chase your craft in some cases. And both changes are definitely outside the realm of possibility.
(And both would cause all sorts of new problems, but that's beside the point.)

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2741 on: June 29, 2016, 03:48:32 pm »
As difficult as they air game may be to balance, I must say I am enjoying the slow build-up to being absolutely overpowered against everything that flies.  I took down my first battleship (Blackbeard difficulty), emboldened by the fact that I had recently manufactured a battleship, the Dragon, of my own and armed it with Railguns.  I probably should have taken some more missile firepower, but switching over manufacturing in my fast interceptor base allowed me only some leftover Stingrays on the Brave Whaler.  It was tense, watching the pride and joy of my fleet get chewed up by heavy plasma weapons, but luck was on my side, and she flew away with only 98% damage :p

And what a haul it was - fenced at least $7 million in ship parts and plasma weapons, keeping most of the plastasteel to sell as Battletanks, and I got enough parts to create two Gat Lascannons!  The plasma bombs will be fun once I get a few more parts.  I loved the map for the ship - it feels huge and intimidating, even on the ground, missing most of its lower deck to chain power source explosions.  The deck guns are a great touch, the side firing ports for enemy soldiers are an abomination; it captures the menace of a real-life battleship and hits the mark on being the capstone of enemy shipping.  Can't wait to take down another, I've got some Avalanches with a battleship's name on them!

Edit: The bomber I just looted had more plasma bomb launcher parts - my battleship's definitely getting loaded with one now!  It feels like a huge snowball effect, but I can't say I'm not ecstatic about it!
« Last Edit: June 29, 2016, 04:04:19 pm by ohartenstein23 »

Offline Disposable Guardsman

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2742 on: June 29, 2016, 05:52:45 pm »
So...will nobody mention Avalanche Missiles? Those things one-shot Cruisers out of the sky. So far, it seems to me that as soon as I get an Avalanche, the airgame becomes pretty much trivial

Offline legionof1

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2743 on: June 30, 2016, 03:26:00 am »
Avalanches are a niche missile fabulous against cruisers and battleships but risky on anything smaller given that a max dmg roll outright destroys anything smaller. Anything smaller then a gunship is an auto destroy regardless of dmg roll. Also 1 shot per mount and expensive.

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [MAIN] XPiratez - 0.99 - 7 Jun - First Impressions
« Reply #2744 on: June 30, 2016, 05:46:07 am »
I think the point is that by the time you have Avalanches, anything smaller than a Cruiser is pretty easy to down with your other weapons, and the multiple-interceptor Avalanche salvo makes the larger ships seem trivial as long as you have something to soak up the damage while the missiles are on their way to the target.

The Avalanche represents a best-in-slot against the large and very large military targets - the Hammermite comes close in raw damage, but the range and front-loaded punch of the Avalanche means it wins out in shooting down the enemy while minimizing damage to your lead craft.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2016, 05:48:26 am by ohartenstein23 »