Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

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evil713
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Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby evil713 » Sat Dec 29, 2018 9:25 pm

Stations don't and cant rotate, at least as far as ive seen. This gives them a disadvantage in defending, I think by giving them a single bubble at 4x, maybe 3x, shield strength all round maybe that would be better for stations.

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Arioch
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby Arioch » Sat Dec 29, 2018 11:42 pm

That would effectively make the shields 3 or 4 times harder to penetrate, which seems unbalanced.

evil713
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby evil713 » Sun Dec 30, 2018 6:53 am

Its a station, last bastion of defence most the time. The normal benefit of shields does not apply, being able to change facing.

Buffing a single facing does not make sense, because its a station round as you can get. if it had a front facing maybe.

Regen bonus is not a good option, because then your in a battle with a regen tank. And most races don't get heavy or siege weapons till cruiser or larger, and theres no Damage over Time effects to negate regen.

A basic star base is just not defended properly in the shield department. Star Fortress either. Hull and Armor are a single damage pool, giving great strength when an upgrade happens.

It either needs a single unified shield, or automatically balance all shield grids at the start of the turn.

maybe 2x stronger then, giving a shield bubble only the single facing value is too weak still.

of course you could just have the station auto rotate 45 degrees a turn. that would solve it.

zolobolo
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby zolobolo » Sun Dec 30, 2018 8:45 am

Rotation of facing to disperse damage over multiple shield segments is an exploit of the gmae mechanics as far as I can tell and not a feature. That stations cannot make use of this is thus not intended and establishing the exploit as a base mechanic would be problematic balance wise (as it already brakes balance as is) - the reason for this is the lack of understanding of shield segments from the side of the AI which seems to be tied into the movement order part of the script.

Add to this the issue that regen rate is tied to the absolute value of the shield instead of to a constant: if you increase the starting value of the shield by X4 so will the regen rate increase

An even bigger problem is that shields are already OP as they are: armor is wastly less usefull in comparison even withouth the regen rate part of the issue (see our discussions in shield balance mods)

As a workaround: if you really want to make use of this exploit also for stations, try adding a maneuver engine to the base: this will allow movement of the unit and I guess rotation as well though the speed of this might be too slow to utilize the exploit effectively

I like the idea of constantly rotating starbase though just because of the visual idea :)
Generally I would rather propose to get rid of shield segments altogehter though and thus eliminate the exploit altogether as an AI update for this segment would probably not be worth the effort

evil713
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby evil713 » Sun Dec 30, 2018 10:06 am

Just to point out to zolobolo that this game is, in spirit, based on the game Master of Orion ][, and shields, in quadrant form, and station rotation was in that game.

Maneuver unit does not allow station rotation, believe me ive tried.

AMX
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby AMX » Sun Dec 30, 2018 1:35 pm

zolobolo wrote:Rotation of facing to disperse damage over multiple shield segments is an exploit of the gmae mechanics as far as I can tell and not a feature.

I'm pretty sure it's an intended feature, particularly considering that there are weapons specifically designed to counter it.

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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby zolobolo » Sun Dec 30, 2018 3:59 pm

I would assume that the spinning around of ships like a merry go round for the sake of absorbing damage via all shield segments and thus win additional time for regen is an exploit as it is not something the AI understand, looks odd and is a hugely micro-intensive activity - would be bad game-design if intentional

Imagine the Offsides Rule in soccer: the intent was to force the attackers to try and fight their way through the defense instead of always passing right in front of the goal in the hopes that they can force the ball in through the crowd which is not fun to watch as it is not clear what is happening and there is little to no tactics involved but as soon as the rule appeared, the defending teams developed tactics to pull their defense forward before the pass and then cry foul which again made the game more boring to whatch and advantage is now not gained via control of the ball but via exploitation of the rules.

As I haven't played the original MoO (and assuming this mechanic was already there) I can only speculate as for the intention of shield segments besides mimicking movies and space sims: to increase survivability of small but agile vessels that reach and penetrate enemy lines as well as for large ships when they are surrounded and enable allow for tactical options before they are pulvarized from all directions and 100% hit chance

What this mechanic probably didn't account for is that the turn-rate of most ships is high enough for the ships to spin around like a balerina and present any side to the enemy the player wishes thus enabling the full utilization of all 4 segments and allowing time for the unutilized segments to regen. I am not saying this is not realistic: but it is not much fun, is micro-inensive and the AI does not recognize this mechanic and thus is probabyl an exploit and not a "feature"

The fact that there is an Env modifier does not prove that this tactic was planned for: it might have only been implemented to allow for specialized shield absorbing configurations: if shield depleting weapons would only affect a signle side they would be too innefective to be viable: why produce a dedicated anti-shield weapon when it only hits a specific segment of the ship and your other vessels might not even benefit from it... the classical case of support function=the effect needs to be prevalent enought to support all vessels in a fleet

evil713
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby evil713 » Sun Dec 30, 2018 11:48 pm

the issue I think is that theres another feature of ships that is not truly enabled on all, and that's directional weapons, I think some of the ships were supposed to have more limited firing arcs but are just 360 degrees shooting. some turrets you can see would be fine in a 270 degree arc, some rear focused more like the tinker ships turrets, that would add more requirements for positioning and movement.

edit: video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vm4SRF4ppvg

zolobolo
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby zolobolo » Mon Dec 31, 2018 8:46 am

That is a good point: a lot of ships have turret mounts that can fire at any direction making the spinning behaviour practicle

Most ships have directional mounts though if I think abouth it: these should swork against this tactic but due to their high maneuverability, they can spin around and face their target when necessary - would not advise though to reduce maneuverability

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siyoa
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby siyoa » Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:26 pm

evil713 wrote:Just to point out to zolobolo that this game is, in spirit, based on the game Master of Orion ][, and shields, in quadrant form, and station rotation was in that game.

Maneuver unit does not allow station rotation, believe me ive tried.


yeah, MoO rotates station by 90 degrees at the beginning of each turn (if my memory serves me right)

something for modders to tinker around with ? ;-)
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Dragar
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby Dragar » Tue Jan 01, 2019 5:11 pm

zolobolo wrote:I would assume that the spinning around of ships like a merry go round for the sake of absorbing damage via all shield segments and thus win additional time for regen is an exploit as it is not something the AI understand, looks odd and is a hugely micro-intensive activity - would be bad game-design if intentional


Why have shield quadrants at all then?

zolobolo
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby zolobolo » Tue Jan 01, 2019 7:41 pm

Dragar wrote:Why have shield quadrants at all then?

This is where I can only theorize: I suspect it might have been to allow better survivability for small vessels vs large fleets and large ships vs large amount of small ships as direction matters in these cases but without shield segments it does not: does not matter where you position the ship as long as it is in optimal range

If the stations would rotate automatically every turn that would make sense as it would not need micro from the user and the other 3 segments of a station would suddenly make sense: for now I assume they are just a by-product of the above without any specific purpose. Ships have them so stations have them too even if it is practically not utilized

Dragar
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby Dragar » Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:07 pm

This is where I can only theorize: I suspect it might have been to allow better survivability for small vessels vs large fleets and large ships vs large amount of small ships...


Could be. But that seems quite a convoluted means of going about such a thing.

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Arioch
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby Arioch » Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:24 pm

Because ships move in a particular direction and (many) have directional weapons, shield facing is tactically meaningful; you may have to choose between optimal weapons bearing and optimal protection. As it worked out in actual gameplay, this element of meaningful impact is smaller than perhaps it should have been (the early Ashdar ships had a lot of fixed forward-arc weapons, but most of the later ships have 360 degree weapons), but it's still there.

For stations, which (normally) don't move and have all 360 degree weapons, shield facing does not offer any meaningful choice and would simply involve uninteresting micromanagement of rotating the station every time it takes damage. So is it meaningful for stations to have shield quadrants? Not really. But since the shield system has quadrants, stations have quadrants too. Changing station shields to be unified would serve no practical purpose; it would still take the same number of damage points to penetrate the shields.

evil713
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Re: Maybe stations should have a single shield bubble.

Postby evil713 » Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:28 pm

My issue is there is three quadrants worth of shield wasted on a station, if there was an option to equalize shields on turn id take it.

Also can we talk about the surprising lack of a heavy weapon on any station?


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