Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

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Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by PM » Sun Jul 10, 2016 2:38 am

1.7a2 fixed long-standing tracking bug(s). Missiles no longer wiggle, and they no longer fly away from their targets. Tracking missiles seem more reliable.

I noticed while experimenting with MIRVs, all of the missile fragments hit their targets nearly every time, unless intercepted. Even the TM7, which used to be difficult to hit with all three fragments, now has all three fragments hit reliably. Before the fix, about two-thirds of the fragments hitting as assumed by the balance algorithm seem to closely match my experience. Now, with better accuracy, two-thirds seems to be an underestimate.

For tracking fragments, I suggest that the multiplier for balance calculations be raised, from 0.67 to at least 0.8, probably 0.9 or maybe even the full 1.

Also, because missiles no longer wiggle away from the target if not fired at their general direction, should the balance modifier for tracking be raised from the current 50 to something higher like, say, 60 or 75?
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Re: Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by NMS » Sun Jul 10, 2016 1:45 pm

I considered tracking to be about as good as omni even before the fix. (Not quite as good at close range, better at medium to long range.) I agree with raising the hit percentage for tracking fragments to 100 and the balance adjustment for tracking to at least +75, maybe +100.

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Re: Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by JohnBWatson » Sun Jul 10, 2016 6:05 pm

It's worth noting that tracking fragments may not all hit the same segment, but are harder to shoot down or evade. Splitting into 50 smaller missiles with 1/50th of the damage each would be a major bonus for an anti - gunship or anti - swarm missile, but would be moderately detrimental when fighting most capital ships.

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Re: Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by Shrike » Sun Jul 10, 2016 9:30 pm

JohnBWatson wrote:It's worth noting that tracking fragments may not all hit the same segment, but are harder to shoot down or evade. Splitting into 50 smaller missiles with 1/50th of the damage each would be a major bonus for an anti - gunship or anti - swarm missile, but would be moderately detrimental when fighting most capital ships.
Unless the submunitions have multitargeting. In which case at close range they swarm together into what's basically a single missile. If these fragment, then they'll only hit one thing. If they don't, the they can "punch through" a lighter target. If they also have AutoAcquireTarget (which usually they should) then they'll then all swap to the (same) next target, causing them to punch out ship after ship until they run out of submunitions.

Tracking submunitions can be insanely powerful. But there's a lot of variables.


In fact in general, balancing a tracking missile is fairly tricky if you actually mess around with all the variables that are in the engine. Vanilla doesn't really do this, so I'd also think the adjustment needs tweaking. Having missiles that can miss is actually pretty useful.

....thinking of it, it'd also be nice to be able to have missiles only track for the first few seconds of flight. Might write a ticket for that some time.
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Re: Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by PM » Sun Jul 10, 2016 10:27 pm

Even without multitargeting, fragments usually hit their target now. Before 1.7a2, some fragments missed because they wiggled away from the target long enough that lifetime expired before they could hit. Now, they all seek and destroy whatever their target is, provided the missiles' turning is good enough. Tracking fragments are "insanely powerful", including those that used to have trouble hitting things before, such as the TM7.

As for adjustments used by the balance algorithm, assuming good enough tracking, my gut feeling tells me +75 for tracking missiles, and 0.9 multiplier for tracking fragments. That said, I will continue to balance with the current values (of +50 and 0.67 multiplier), but I may try to make my weapons slightly underpowered to compensate.
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Re: Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by PM » Fri Jul 15, 2016 1:49 pm

One more thing about lack of wiggling on tracking missiles in alpha 2; effective speed and range are not impaired anymore. Before, wiggling effectively slowed missiles and cut their range somewhat. Now, missiles can fly directly at targets at full speed and range.
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Re: Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by PM » Fri Jul 22, 2016 3:14 pm

After playing with missiles with tracking fragments some more, I think balance calculations should assume all tracking fragments will hit, that is, multiplier should be 1. I do not see TM7, S3 Medusa, or Kairyu fragments missing if there are available targets.
JohnBWatson wrote:It's worth noting that tracking fragments may not all hit the same segment, but are harder to shoot down or evade. Splitting into 50 smaller missiles with 1/50th of the damage each would be a major bonus for an anti - gunship or anti - swarm missile, but would be moderately detrimental when fighting most capital ships.
It just occurred to me that weapons with multishot configurations (e.g., dual weapons, laser array, ion flame) may not be able to land all of their shots on the same segment (or even the same target if far enough away), yet they do not get any discounts in the balance configuration for that. Of course, most such weapons tend to be balanced on the high end.
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Godmode v3 (WIP): Dev/cheat tool compatible with D&O parts 1 or 2.

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Re: Review tracking balance since 1.7a2.

Post by AssumedPseudonym » Fri Jul 22, 2016 9:26 pm

PM wrote:It just occurred to me that weapons with multishot configurations (e.g., dual weapons, laser array, ion flame) may not be able to land all of their shots on the same segment (or even the same target if far enough away), yet they do not get any discounts in the balance configuration for that. Of course, most such weapons tend to be balanced on the high end.
 Spread weapons might not hit the same segment (though they probably usually will), but dual weapons will. It’s the angle the shot hits at that counts, not the position of where it hits.
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