Arioch wrote:Yes, the Tinkers start with a lower-level autorepair system, which is built into every military hull.
Ok, hard targets then, this should offset their early tech disadvantage just fine
zolobolo wrote: EMP missiles: being robotic in nature this would be their basic way of fighting between each other
Tinkers don't normally fight each other -- the cyborg Harmonization process is effectively a form of "nerve stapling"; Tinkers and other Harmonized cyborgs aren't affected by morale. But I do think it could make sense for EMP weapons to have special effects against cyborgs.
Dammit I forgot just how evil these critter really are
So how about this as special effect: Since Tinkers get a disadvantage early game and can be considered to be the first "defensive" style faction, they could get really OP late game. So EMP could have not only a disabling effect on their weapons but also kill of their crew! The problem with this is that AI needs to be made fit for countering late-game Tinker ships with EMP and they generally avoid this weapon type though this might be due to not pursuing boarding tactics.
Something more easy to implement would be a pre-EMP tech (analog to Gremak Launcher and above mentioned pre-auto-repair). It would be a less powerful EMP warhead, that the Tinkes can use though extensively (via their drones for example). This, combined with the repair ability could easily make them OP early game, so you can give them another substation drawback like: high upkeep or production costs
So it would look like this:
- low pop reproduction rate
- low science production
- low income
- ships cost more
+ do not need food (or minimal amount)
+ is not affected by morale
+ ships are tough right from the start
+ can disable enemy ships early on
Thus they would have few ships, but those are very powerful right from the start (The Borg come to my mind now that I think about it)
Alternatively: They could get reverse-engineering and integration into fleet tech right from the start instead (as they like to tinker with other peoples tech