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Author Topic: Fighter Balance  (Read 6457 times)

Offline Zharkov

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Fighter Balance
« on: November 28, 2016, 08:45:09 pm »
I remember the times, when a fighter was a problem and posed a threat even to your (then) starting Bonaventura. Now, it stands now chance against a Hunter-Killer with a ragtag collection of looted weapons. I'd suggest to make it a bit more interesting (i.e., fear inspiring) to fight by upping the dodge capability.

Offline Eddie

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2016, 02:29:53 pm »
Actually, high dodge of Piratez craft is the problem. I've used single jetbikes with 50mm cannon to successfully intercept fighters.

Idea for better craft dodge balance:
It seems odd that pilot reaction gives the same dodge bonus on all ships, no matter if it's a kraken or a jetbike. My idea is to convert the dodge bonus on a craft to a pilot dodge limit. So on a jetbike a pilot could use all his reaction to dodge, while on a kraken his reaction skill is pretty useless. The craft is just not agile enough that a high reaction would benefit evasion.
This would also mean that agility fighters like the baracuda would need skilled pilots to get the most out of it. If the pilot has no good reaction skill, he can't benefit from the agility of the craft and gets no dodge bonus.

Bottom line of this would be a reduction of craft dodge, while pilot skill skaling on apropriate craft would still be the same.


Edit:
Another idea - more variety in weapon accuracy of shippings. A bomber could have bad accuracy (think death star vs x-wing), while fighters could have a very high accuracy (think tie fighter vs x-wing). The way dodge math is working right now, high accuracy penalized high dodge more than low dodge. If fighter-type shippings also had high-fire-rate-low-damage weapons, damage reduction (armor) would be more useful against them. This would create a kind of rock paper scissor situation for aircombat.

This would go well with giving the swordfish some damage reduction (it says armored in the description), so you have an equal tech alternative to your hunter killer. So then the swordfish would be your armored option that has good defence vs fighter type shippings, while your hunter killer is your agility fighter that is good vs bomber type shippings (frighters for example), because these can hardly hit it.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2016, 03:07:22 pm by Eddie »

Offline Dioxine

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2016, 03:16:37 pm »
Edit:
Another idea - more variety in weapon accuracy of shippings. A bomber could have bad accuracy (think death star vs

Sounds good to me but someone would need to crunch the numbers on this to set some guidelines, and take a look at the code (does acc > 100% work against dodge? Or does it count as 100?).

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2016, 03:24:03 pm »
Projectile (weapon) accuracy is multiplied by the size modifier, then dodge, craft accuracy, and pilot bonuses are added to it.  So accuracy bonuses do counteract dodge directly.  Or, put another way, dodge can drop a 100+ accuracy shot below 100, giving it a chance to miss.

Offline Dioxine

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2016, 03:26:14 pm »
Does it works both ways equally? Eg. if an UFO has 120% acc (with Yankes' acc bonus), and your interceptor 60% Dodge, does enemy's chance to hit equal 60%?

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2016, 03:28:21 pm »
Yep! But there's no size bonus going the other way, which could be changed...

Edit: In both cases, chanceToHit = weapon accuracy (* size modifier) + hit bonuses - dodge bonuses, which is then the percent chance of hitting.  Values over 100 count as 100 for the RNG.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2016, 03:34:13 pm by ohartenstein23 »

Offline Dioxine

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2016, 03:40:25 pm »
Size bonus isn't needed the other way... I could add a negative dodge bonus to larger player's crafts... Or even buff everyone else so only slow, lumbering crafts have +0 dodge. However, even the largest pirate crafts are small-sized, with Conqueror being the sole exception (high-end Medium).

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2016, 03:56:55 pm »
Oh yeah, true - dodge bonus isn't at all capped to positive numbers, so it is definitely a way to differentiate player craft by size/maneuverability.  I'd think the Conqueror starts getting into large territory, the map being about the same size as a freighter but even taller.  Spy Zepplins too, but trying to intercept with those is just a joke anyways.

Offline Eddie

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2016, 10:53:05 pm »
Since there is probably an overhaul of aircombat coming anyway:
I feel there is a lack of lowtech heavy craft weapons. The light weapons got some recent additions that are really useful early game (sonic oscillator, reticulan plasma charger), but it's actually the heavy slot that is lacking options. You get craft with heavy weapon slots quite early, but can't really make use of them. Spike rockets don't pack enough ammo and are quite expensive to buy.

Some ideas:

- Airballs can be mounted on light and heavy slots. It's improvised anyway, there shoud be a way to fit them to a heavy mount. Not sure if the engine permits this on one launcher. If not, add a seperate airball launcher for the heavy mount.

- Create something similar to the 25mm cannon for the heavy slot. Cheap buyable ammo, big clipsize, but not very high dps. Like a 20mm or 25mm gatling, similar to how the lascannon is a gatling for the heavy mount. The 30mm could be changed to fill that role. Why change the 30mm? Because dps is nearly the same as 50mm cannon, so these guns are quite similar and not much would be lost from the change. Or just create a new gun.
If the 30mm spot is used, it could need more shippings that have these as loot. I have found parts sufficient for four 50mm cannons but not enough to assemble a single 30mm cannon yet.

- Change the reticulan plasma charger or sonic oscillator to heavy. The dps of both guns is quite similar, not much lost changing one of them to heavy.

Offline Arthanor

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2016, 11:14:18 pm »
Good stuff being discussed here!

Fighters are really annoying having high damage weapons with low RoF. It makes shields useless against them, even though shields are really useful against our pirate fighters until they pack good missiles.

The lack of heavy weapon slots is also very annoying. There is a big gap at the beginning, then you get a few weapons that have potential midgame, then another gap when you're locked behind one gun (boomgun) for progress. The early gap makes ships like the swordfish useless since there's nothing good to put on it.

My fix would be to simply allow light weapons to be installed into heavy slots. If you can fit a big gun, why wouldn't you be able to fit a light one if that's all you have? Sure, having a battleship with only machine guns as weapons looks stupid, but it looks less stupid than with no gun whatsoever. In my current game, I'd happily put plasma spitters on my Dragons, because they're better than anything I own for heavy weapons against the targets I want the Dragons to tackle.

An alternative would be a "duct tape 2-3 light weapons together to make a heavy one" idea, which would increase rate of fire by 2-3, but also decrease accuracy, same damage, same ammo. In fact, now that I think of it, I think I'll mod that one before I play next time.

Offline KateMicucci

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2016, 11:38:25 pm »
The lack of heavy weapon slots is also very annoying. There is a big gap at the beginning, then you get a few weapons that have potential midgame, then another gap when you're locked behind one gun (boomgun) for progress. The early gap makes ships like the swordfish useless since there's nothing good to put on it.
What is "good"? I don't know if its the most efficient craft, but my swordfish has been doing fine with ramjets, and the heavy craft weapons tech will unlock in a few weeks.

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2016, 12:09:42 am »
Spike rockets alone don't make a heavy slot worthwhile except if you have a couple launchers/rockets from looting.  To make the Swordfish useful, you do probably need either ramjet cannons or 105 mm rockets - the latter can be gotten pretty soon after light craft weapons.  To make up for that though, there are two potential heavy weapons from using the tiny drill, as opposed to one light and one missile launcher.  I personally would like the first heavy weapons to come a bit earlier in the tech tree, but I tend to beeline that tech because I really like the Swordfish.

@Arthanor:  The craft railgun does cover that gap for heavy weapons until you get the boom gun researched - you can take down a battleship with enough of those, and they have pretty similar stats to the spitter, but cost much less to operate.

Offline legionof1

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2016, 12:24:52 am »
Would that the codex weapon was a bit more independent of such a crucial late game shaping choice.

Offline Arthanor

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2016, 12:27:44 am »
@KateMicucci
Good simply means: More worth using (a combination of damage, DPS and cost efficiency) than light weapons of the same tier.

Ramjets have less damage (and benefit less from +Acc since they have higher native acc than most light weapons), they do have better DPS but they also have an insane cost/damage (22k/shot, really? That's on par with Seagulls and... Plasma Bombs)

In the early game, 50mm are more than enough to down most targets and really cheap to produce ammo for (10x! cheaper than Ramjets, for 1/2 the DPS and +50% total damage). The first decent heavy to me would be 105MM Rockets (bit more DPS, bit more total damage and much cheaper to produce than buying ramjet ammo). The first good heavy is the Naval Gun, then the Rail Gun. Unless there's a revamp coming on combat, Beam lasers are useless against military ships, so maybe build a few for intercepting non-shielded shipping, but keep most of your parts for Rail Guns as those will do the work you need them to against shielded targets.

@ohartenstein23
Yeah, I know, rail guns are where it's at. And I guess you're right that they are what you need in that period. I just fell for the beam laser before shields were used so I have no more power couplings and my experience is skewed. I'm now going back tech-wise and building Naval Guns to tackle cruisers  >:(

@legionof1
Yup, I'm not a fan of the codex thing either.

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: Fighter Balance
« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2016, 12:38:05 am »
Spike rockets are much more useful once you can manufacture the ammunition too - about the cheapest cost per damage out there for a heavy weapon, save for the lasers.  I wouldn't buy spikes unless I really needed that extra DPS by throwing a Pachy into combat, or if I chose red codex for Little Ilya.

Early air game is really about getting any weapon into the sky, just loot something and throw it on a craft.