Short naive questions

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onomastikon
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:05 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby onomastikon » Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:43 am

OK thanks!
Keeping this short and about easy newbie questions :
- is there a point to morale (above 0)? I mean, are there some production bonuses or other things I am missing for morale above say 10 or whatever? (I realize there are chances of dissention below 0) - seems like having very high morale would be nice for extra votes in the council....

zolobolo
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:49 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby zolobolo » Sat Sep 08, 2018 2:23 pm

As far as I can tell, there is no other benefit to having moral above 0 other then having a buffer for the eventual (and frankly inevitable) misdeeds of the ruler ;)

These are:
1. Enslaving pops
2. Forced labor for slaves
3. Using slaves for experiments
4. "Letting" the colonists die from starvation - this mechanic is especially important as the higher the buffer, the longer your pops can hold out during enemy blockade while still running short on food
5. Bombing civilians - a much too effective way of crippling enemy empires: this negative morale effect is more or less the only downside currectly to this "strategy"
6. Conquering pops (if you feel especially charitive and do not bomb them all ot kingdom--con to resetle a sterile planet)

Due to the above, it pays to have as high as possible morale before going into a major conflict where there is going to be a lot of blockading, bombing and labor going on :)

Now, there is also a diplomacy indicator for race opinion: this might be calculated from the opinions of all pops of that race around the map but there does not seem to be a way to determine how this KPIs is actually calcualted or how it affects diplomacy

onomastikon
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:05 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby onomastikon » Sat Sep 08, 2018 7:17 pm

I see, thanks. I found that usually just a market or so solves all of those problems (I never use slaves however). Would love to see more interesting mechanics, such as asymptotical bonuses or penalties to production and effects towards voting in the council. It seems too easy to me to have morale of 0 or higher.
Also, cannot really test your settings since more than 100 stars is really just slowing down my system. Also no fun with this UI to try to find particular objects (population units, ships) that you want, and then to move them...
Last questions!
- So I can build outpost transports, but apparently I cannot deploy them to planets which I already control -- what am I missing? Of course I only want to do this for my modified outposts, ones in which I remove the fuel depot (useless of course with planets I already control) and add a warp lane inhibitor. So these Inhibitor transporters I *can* deploy on inhabitable rocks, and I guess they work, but I cannot deploy them to my own planets -- is there a workaround? OR am I misunderstanding and an Inhibitor transport will work in a system even if not deployed?
- Star Gates cost basically nothing? Tuppence? Shouldn't they be incredibly metal and work intensive, considering there is no drawback to building them (they cost no orbit slot)? Or at least cost an orbit slot?
thanks much!

Chasm
Posts: 561
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2016 9:14 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby Chasm » Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:17 pm

An outpost is a space station deployable to worlds you do not control. It does not add an orbital slot, so either deploy it to the uninhabited world and colonize afterward, or just build the orbital you want after world is colonized.

zolobolo
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:49 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby zolobolo » Sun Sep 09, 2018 5:12 pm

My understanding is that Stargates are meant to work both ways: once an enemy occupies the planet and captures the Stargate, it can be used by their network - the problem here is that the AI does not yet build their own stargate network (not even when playing Haduir)

But frankly, if the game does not make it untill end-game, the only way the player would come across Stargates is when playing the Haduir: in the save this is exactly the case. I have built them all across my systems and it helps a lot with positioning but was still loosing badly against Tinker+Phidi alliance. Its not a game changer like super dreds or mobile planetoids, jsut speeds up ships in ceartant cases and costs some money and metal in return

Son all-in-all I think it is fine how much they cost- I would increase the upkeep cost of them for sure, but I generally miss higher infrastrucutre costs (starbases and fortresses are also virtually free to have and often have a more profound inpact on the game as they can stop a flet in their tracks

If you have issues with the UI, be sure to check out hte advanced options menu: assigning new transport ships to trade fleet automatically, or blending in range and movement lines can help a lot depending on the type of map you are playing and how far you are in

But what was that abouth inhibitors? Did you get a game untill end-game withouth winning? Can you pls send a screenshot of that?
I am always interested in finding ways to prolong the meaningfull game time

If you find 120 stars to be too much I can understand that - AI takes quite some time since the updates - but 85 systems should still be fine right? Luck of course is a big factor: the save/and current game turned out ot be a winner for two reasons:
1. Tinkers and Phidi both became as powerfull as the player till mid-game on the own and were unseparatable allies from thereon
2. There are some strips of uninhabitable systems lining the territories of the three sides, and worked as a temporary barrier for most of the game enabling all sides to buff up their military and defenses before late-game has kicked in

onomastikon
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:05 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby onomastikon » Wed Sep 12, 2018 3:15 pm

Thanks!
I dont think the AI can capture Stargates; if you have any missiles after you have researched auto-retargeting then those stargates die quickly.
Those UI options I had found, but on large maps it's still too much of a hassle to find out which planets have which populations that need to move where, etc., I think small maps fit this UI better.
And no, there is no real end-game going on, the remaining AIs offer no threat or challenge I just wanted to know what some of the end-game techs do so I refuse to accept the council vote and just let the AI scratch around a bit while I see what "planet construction" actually means :lol:
Does anyone else have a problem in tactical battles once there are more than say 30 ships on the screen at once? I find that the individual ships will frequently not react to my mouseclicks, that I cannot select certain ships or if I manage to do so, I cannot get them to move, or I can only select all of the ships of the same type (which I cannot move anyhow) -- or is that my computer?
thanks much

zolobolo
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:49 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby zolobolo » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:25 pm

Haven't had such issues even with large amount of ships up to around 40 per side

Check the save I have uploaded - it seems to go all the way into the end-game: would have lost agaisnt the AI (first time in late-game) if haven't resorted to scorched earth exploit

It might be that one of the ships you select cannot move... that would prevent moving all the selected ships at once.
A ship might be incapacitated, due to damage, being captured, out of movement points or being boxed in by other ships

I agree that the UI would need a quick overview of all the pops and their amount in hte production screen. I would make the info triggerable when displayed in the system view though as some might find the view cluttered otherwise

zolobolo
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:49 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby zolobolo » Sun Sep 16, 2018 8:17 pm

Finally I got to the endgame of the save - took me long enough as I needed to move the defneding fleets back to the starbases and in range of planetary defenses in most plantery defense missions (of which tehre was a record amount there :))

At preciecly Turn 300 the Tinker + Phidi alliance has lost the war and the game, so no endgame :)
Ther reason I am still smyling though is that the only way I could survive the late-game was to resorting to the probably most commonly used exploit of SiS: scorched planet tactic. By eliminating the whole population of an enemy planet and then simply moving on to the next least defended target, the defendinf fleets are forced to play catchup, whilee loosing whole planets and not having anything to take back (no building or pops remain) - the player can also ignore the need to produce ground units, and having to bother with moral penalties of conquered planets

If I hadn't resorted to this exploit, I would have definitively lost the game despite having a well built-up empire + ally and this is very good - best game so far. I just couldn't help myself of trying the tactic in this situation again instead of going down with dignity :)

Thus some random variables aside, the game can get a hell-of a challange even on Normal difficulty.
Once he diplomacy update is out there are only going to be two mayor exploits left in the game as far as I can tell: the above scorched planet tactic and hiring merc ships - the combination of these two can negate even the hardest difficulty withouth effort so should be avoided so that the fun mechanics are not spoiled by them

There was mention of a planetary degradation penalty after bombing: this would till some extent negate the exploit, but only if there are several layers of habitable planets between the parties, otherwise the AI will be cripled just the same (as would the player but hte AI does not resort to this tactic)

Regarding mercs: those need an AI update which I hope will also come in the near future

All-in-all: fantastic playthrough (be sure to set raider activity to LOW) even though it just missed the endgame: next time we'll make it ;)

onomastikon
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:05 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby onomastikon » Mon Sep 17, 2018 12:06 pm

Sounds great!
You mentioned here:

7. Game Speed setting: "Epic" only affects Research rate by changing the multiplier to 1.5 and does not yet affect production. You can check the setting and change it if you like in file: new_galaxy.lua

that game speed settings change only research, when I start a new game it says that changing that setting will change research and production. How do I check that file you mention to see what is what? I am not very good at technological things :oops:
thank you!

zolobolo
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:49 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby zolobolo » Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:45 pm

onomastikon wrote:Sounds great!
You mentioned here:

7. Game Speed setting: "Epic" only affects Research rate by changing the multiplier to 1.5 and does not yet affect production. You can check the setting and change it if you like in file: new_galaxy.lua

that game speed settings change only research, when I start a new game it says that changing that setting will change research and production. How do I check that file you mention to see what is what? I am not very good at technological things :oops:
thank you!

Don't think the hint is correct for normal difficulty anymore (previously it was the case)

The file is located here:
Install DIR\Stars in Shadow\Lua state\Setup\new_galaxy.lua

This is the relevant code:
local game_speed_settings = {
normal = {
tech_cost_mult=1,
production_cost_mult=1,
influence_cost_mult=1,
},
epic = {
tech_cost_mult=1.5,
production_cost_mult=1,
influence_cost_mult=1,
},
marathon = {
tech_cost_mult=2,
production_cost_mult=1.5,
influence_cost_mult=1.5,
},
}

onomastikon
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:05 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby onomastikon » Wed Sep 26, 2018 12:46 pm

OK thanks, so conceivably I could alter those manually (I'm scared of fiddling with important files because I can do something wrong). I play on the hardest difficulty, anything lower just doesn't seem quite right.
I tried a smallish galaxy with only one opponent in the hopes that he would build up before we met, and in some sense this was true, but sadly it happened much too quickly and he turned out to be Phidi, and we had insta-war because (since he was the only opponent) as soon as we met a Council was called and he had 3x as much population as I, and so I had to decline the Council vote. But nothing exciting happend since then, I managed to survive fairly easily and soon boxed him in.
I wonder, though: Does the AI ever research Longevity or the other techs which increase population growth? It seems the AI does very well in the beginning of the game at hardest settings, but if I can survive that I have no problem out-populating everyone without much effort at all. How does the AI screw this up considering it can micro-manage to its heart's content? It appears to me that ALL AI factions tend to research "Habitat Domes" more quickly than I do, since all factions invariably settle those initially off-limits planets much earlier than I can, but the AI does not seem to research the next tech in line (or is it the one afterwards? no offline tree to see, sadly) which yields big population growth boosts. I cannot figure out why the AIs population always seem to stagnate.
I also wonder why the AI will not settle on planets it can colonize in systems in which another faction has already colonized a planet. It took me two playthroughs to realize that (unlike many other 4x games!) this is actually not a "rule", i.e. there are no in-game contraints about who "controls" which "territory", the colored borders are just, it seems, pleasant heuristic devices, they are not actual lines of demarcation or "influence" with in-game value. Purely by accident I noticed that I got a pop-up reminder that my colony ship was at a habitable planet when it arrived too late in a system in which an opponent AI had already colonized some other rock. Why doesn't the AI do what I can do?
The AI also seems to build mines on mineral-poor worlds -- does it realize that doing so is very suboptimal?
The AI also seems to build far too many colony ships and send these off into hopeless battles without any significant military backup (or even any at all). Is there a reason for that?
Is it coincidence that in the last games I have played in which the Yoral were a faction that these were always the first faction to be eliminated by other AIs? (I always seem to get attacked the Phidi first (yes, so pacifist...) and then I wipe them out, the idiots...)
Thanks much!

zolobolo
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:49 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby zolobolo » Sun Sep 30, 2018 3:05 pm

You should definitively play on the settigns that feel right for you no question :)

In my case, all-default settings on Eclipse Galaxy and Normal difficulty is just perfect now but this has its own reasons which for others might not be relevant

Territory marking is mostly just visuals but there is a diplomac penalty for shared borders which discourages colonisation near other empires. Once it maxes out there isof course no penalty for colonising beyong other empires borders

The AI is following an effective build strategy: in some cases it might build mines on mineral poor planets due to lack of metal and expansion opportunities to get more, if the planet if not suited for really anything (low metal and low fertility) or if pop staffing has alread ybeen reached for other more viable options (even mines require staffing and because of this it does not realy make sense to build 3 labs on a planet with a population that cannot staff it properly - might as well add a mine there as we always need metal

Scout and colony ship overkill is a rare logical bug that seems to sometimes occur
Yoral used to be the big enemy at the end untill the Tinkers arrvied: if these two end up close to each other, the Yoral (and most any other) species will be whacked by the Tinkers

Have you already tried playing the Humans?
Last edited by zolobolo on Mon Oct 01, 2018 5:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

onomastikon
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:05 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby onomastikon » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:03 am

OK, good to know, thanks!
No, I have not tried playing humans because they would seem to exacerbate the problem I have: difficulty such that surviving the early-game still gives late-game interest. The humans seem to have an early-game disadvantage, I don't need any more of those. To try to say it differently: At the harder difficulties, the AI is very good at making my life miserable until I am able to research "cloning" and "habitat domes"; if I can survive until then, the AI seems to be unable to match any challenge afterwards, even militarily. I do have to re-load saves and retry my positioning and prioritizing in the first rounds or I get steamrolled by superior warships (but with the right positioning I can beat his superior fleet with my inferior fleet by simply being smart tactically, as long as I am not ridiculously outmatched, as the AI is a bit of bonehead tactically). But once I get past the early game, I never save anymore.
I still do not understand why the AI has a superior population count to me before midgame, and post-midgame it dwindles rapidly. I know it must be researching "habitat domes" before me, and thus it must also be able to research "cloning" (but I cannot see if it actually does this), nevertheless it fails to maximize its population and just loses no matter what else it does.

zolobolo
Posts: 945
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:49 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby zolobolo » Mon Oct 01, 2018 5:52 pm

The AI utilzies the city planning project to ramp up population + it shuftles around pops to maximise planet pop combos

Yes I can imagine that higher difficulties can cripple Humans espeically with the diplomacy update - I am just now testing this and the Humans have surprisingly hard time on Normal difficulty

Still I suggest you try Huge map, Humans on Normal difficulty and all default settings: they have a hard time early on like in harder difficulties but withouth the AI having obvious game breaking perks and due to their cirppled state till mid-game you are more or less sure to run into late game with still a challenge looming around.

Also: try a game withouth reloading saves or using undo when you take strategic risks that do not pay off (e.g.: leaving a section of hte border undefended and the AI rushes you) - try to embrace mistakes as part of the game and coming back from them will be all te sweater and will expand the game experience massively (of course you need to be on a difficulty level for this where one mistake is not game ending ;))

onomastikon
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:05 pm

Re: Short naive questions

Postby onomastikon » Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:49 am

Hey thanks.
Perhaps the AI does do these things (I cannot tell what a foreign planet produces, so I'll have to take your word for it that they use city planning; I don't really see them shuffling their populations around enough, but perhaps I'm not paying enough attention), but be that as it may, I claim again: Once I research the first of the two techs which increase population growth (cloning, 900 beakers), the game is more or less over: the AI falls massively behind, within one voting period my population skyrockets and his stagnates. I think this is important because I know that ALL the AIs research habitat domes (same position in tree, slightly more prereqs) significantly before I do, so I also deduce that ALL AIs can research cloning long before I do, and thus I further deduce that either (a) for whatever reason, they fail to do this, or (b) if they do, something is broken. I do not micromanage nearly as effectively as the AI must be able to, so I deduce that something is wrong. I'm guessing that the AI also does not research Longevity (just two techs further down), in my last games I didn't research it either because I won by population vote before I could research it.
I really appreciate your replies to me. I think we may be talking at cross-purposes regarding game settings; I have gratefully taken your advice on those, but, as I have tried to say, I cannot play on huge maps until the UI is updated at least to some degree. (And playing on anything less than hard seems like cheating at the moment.)
I look forward the diplomatic update when this gets released (on GOG too)! Until then, I just can't get a challenge past early-game; all I have to do is not get wiped out until I research "cloning".


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