Proposal: switch the gimmicks on the Freyr and Manticore

Post ideas & suggestions you have pertaining to the game here.

Should we give the Freyr the armor repairer and the Manticore the swivel bonus?

Yes.
2
40%
No, they're fine.
2
40%
Something should be done, but I prefer another solution.
1
20%
 
Total votes: 5
NMS
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Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:16 am

This was brought up on George's stream earlier this year. Another player and I had had the idea independently. The more I think about it, the more I like it.

Currently, the player version of the Manticore is just bad. With the same top speed and thrust ratio as the EI500 (which means it has less acceleration for a given load due to lower base mass), it can't dodge effectively or run away from most enemies. The armor repairer is interesting, but compounds the problem by reducing total hp. Unusually fast armor regeneration is very effective for long or frequent low-intensity battles, but nearly useless against really threatening enemies or groups of heavy gunships that can penetrate level-appropriate armor quickly. And with the revamped shop inventories, the player will rarely have access to really overleveled armor. And using a shield generator instead of the armor repairer comes with an hp penalty. Furthermore, the offset fire locations make it harder to aim fixed weapons, especially when using a primary and a launcher. It's possible to mitigate the disadvantages by using a drive, omni weapons, and good shields, but this seems antithetical to the intent of the ship, and still worse than most other player ships. Basically, playing the Manticore is something of a challenge run regardless of how you do it.

Meanwhile, the Freyr is not very interesting. It's a perfectly serviceable gunship, but the swivel benefit is kind of small and only works with a limited number of early to mid game weapons, so it doesn't seem as valuable as the Wolfen's higher top speed, the Sapphire's more flexible slots, and both of their smaller sizes. There are 8 Rasiermesser weapons in core, but only the Flenser, dual Flenser, Akan 30, and MAG launcher get the full benefit of the swivel. The rest have tracking, omni, spread, or can fire tracking missiles. In CC, 7 more were added, 5 primaries that get full benefit, one with inaccuracy, and a launcher that benefits for one missile type. But these weapons are mostly uninteresting and all slightly inferior to their competitors, aside from the benefit when playing the Freyr. There are no Rasiermesser weapons over level 8, and the level 7-8 ones are not endgame quality due to damage type, inaccuracy, and/or lack of WMD.

Switching the swivel and the armor repairer would seem to fix a lot of these problems. The Manticore would have higher survivability with a shield, and swiveling Makayev weapons would more than compensate for the odd fire positions, while letting it focus on a "brute force" approach. There are 10 Makayev weapons in core, and one endgame quality one in CC. All but the 2 with inaccuracy would get the full benefit of swivel. None of them are energy weapons, but the new Rasiermesser ones could be switched to Makayev if this is important. Or new ones could be created to fill in the gaps in the Makayev product line. This would also make it easier to make the NPC and player versions of the Manticore match.

The Freyr might not be as good with the armor repairer, but at least it would be more interesting, and it would be better able to deal with the danger of low total hp by dodging and running.
Last edited by NMS on Thu Oct 05, 2017 3:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

PM
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Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:43 am

I prefer no-gimmick or NPC version of Manticore over Corporate Command version of it. NPC version has full shield strength and centered weapons. It is almost like two different ships even those both have the same name and image.

Actually, I do not like the Manticore's gimmick at all. Either Freyr or Manticore will be hurt by it. It may hurt less if the ship is at least as fast as Wolfen, which Freyr (and every other starter for that matter) is not. The Manticore's gimmick is something I would not mind seeing on the Wind Slaver or similarly fast ship. If Freyr gets Manticore's gimmick, it needs to be faster, at least .25c.

There are no low-level Makayev weapons aside from the omnidirectional Moskva 11, meaning the Freyr's gimmick on Makayev weapons does not manifest until about midgame. Also, no energy weapons, which is a shame. Otherwise, the Freyr's gimmick could be useful for Manticore, given its off-centered weapon points.
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Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:01 am

 See also my comment back in August on this ticket. It also states my position on the matter pretty clearly.
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Mon Oct 02, 2017 4:51 am

PM wrote:
Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:43 am
Actually, I do not like the Manticore's gimmick at all. Either Freyr or Manticore will be hurt by it. It may hurt less if the ship is at least as fast as Wolfen, which Freyr (and every other starter for that matter) is not. The Manticore's gimmick is something I would not mind seeing on the Wind Slaver or similarly fast ship. If Freyr gets Manticore's gimmick, it needs to be faster, at least .25c.
I'm not sure it needs to be .25 c, but I wouldn't object to the Freyr being faster.
PM wrote:
Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:43 am
There are no low-level Makayev weapons aside from the omnidirectional Moskva 11, meaning the Freyr's gimmick on Makayev weapons does not manifest until about midgame. Also, no energy weapons, which is a shame. Otherwise, the Freyr's gimmick could be useful for Manticore, given its off-centered weapon points.
Certainly, it should start with a level 2-ish fixed Makayev weapon if we do this. The heavy recoilless could be switched to Makayev, the Valjor/Sabel line could be switched (and renamed), or new ones could be added.
AssumedPseudonym wrote:
Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:01 am
See also my comment back in August on this ticket. It also states my position on the matter pretty clearly.
Ah, I though there had been some discussion, but I couldn't find it. If no one comes up with a major objection and George doesn't weigh in in this thread, we should probably create a dedicated ticket for this idea.

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Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:50 pm

Now that devices can enhance armor, the nano repairer could give all armor +50% hp or something to compensate for no shield and offset Manticore's squishiness. Admittedly, it will not help if player wants a shield instead and takes -20% to hp.

As for "brute force", nothing says that better than a second primary linked-fire weapon. Manticore appears to be built to fire two primary weapons, not one. If that is too much firepower, give the Manticore a damage bonus (with all weapons) so that if it hits, it hurts.

Come to think of it, if the Manticore gets the swivel but nothing else to help offense, give swivel to all weapons, not just Makayev, because majorly off-centered weapon points without any compensation to help offense is annoying, especially when NPC Manticore ships do not have that weakness.
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Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:01 pm

I really like the Manticore as it is. I did a full playthrough with it and the Navoya armor repairer, though at one point I switched out the advanced armor for the high HP level 10 armor to fight the Ares shipyards but switched back for the level 9 disintegration immune armor to beat the game after I found that the Navoya armor repairer doesn't repair above level 10. The offset weapon points are interesting and fun though the PM 6 slicer looked terrible, lol. The Navoya armors are adequate throughout most of the journey, imo, and are credit efficient being that the most effective coating is the hp boost and you can sell the rest.

If anything I would like to see the Navoya armor repairer in the shops for purchase so that other ships can try it out.

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Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:28 pm

I also like the Manticore as - is. I'd like to see it integrated better with the vanilla Manticore, but other than that it's one of the more unique, balanced ships.

The Freyr is the ship with the issues. It's incredibly OP with the (already OP) dual Flenser, but has no useful early or late game advantages. Improving the Raissermesser energy weapons(preferably with WMD and a damage bonus to compensate for their uselessness in dogfights) would solve our issue in early game, and altering the Flenser cannon in some way to make it more balanced would help with midgame, but for late game it needs a new set of weapons. The Raissermesser launcher is extremely expensive and not particularly useful relative to an enhanced non - ammo thermo weapon(especially the howitzers, of which CC adds even more powerful versions), and the other late game raissermesser weapons have high enough spread that the tiny swivel we're given is useless. On top of that, it's fragile and presents a broad target.

I'm not going to compare it to the Wolfen, because the Wolfen is too much of a master of all to compare anything to - it's got heavy armor, enough slots for any reasonably useful build, and enough speed to outrun any even somewhat enemy in the game without an engine upgrade. That said, it still needs some sort of advantage to be viable.

I would suggest playing up the Freyr as an offense - based ship, and increasing the swivel as compensation for its poor survivability. In order to make it more unique, it could be set up as a ship that forgoes multiple varied weapons for a single powerful one by giving it more device slots and fewer weapon slots.

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Thu Oct 05, 2017 3:42 am

Added a third poll option. Sorry to the 2 other users who had voted, you'll have to re-vote.

PM wrote:
Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:50 pm
Now that devices can enhance armor, the nano repairer could give all armor +50% hp or something to compensate for no shield and offset Manticore's squishiness. Admittedly, it will not help if player wants a shield instead and takes -20% to hp.

As for "brute force", nothing says that better than a second primary linked-fire weapon. Manticore appears to be built to fire two primary weapons, not one. If that is too much firepower, give the Manticore a damage bonus (with all weapons) so that if it hits, it hurts.

Come to think of it, if the Manticore gets the swivel but nothing else to help offense, give swivel to all weapons, not just Makayev, because majorly off-centered weapon points without any compensation to help offense is annoying, especially when NPC Manticore ships do not have that weakness.
Reasonable ideas, though a slot with built-in linked fire is probably OP. Also, it would probably be confusing to use without an engine improvement, such as named slots.

Norgath wrote:
Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:01 pm
I really like the Manticore as it is. I did a full playthrough with it and the Navoya armor repairer, though at one point I switched out the advanced armor for the high HP level 10 armor to fight the Ares shipyards but switched back for the level 9 disintegration immune armor to beat the game after I found that the Navoya armor repairer doesn't repair above level 10. The offset weapon points are interesting and fun though the PM 6 slicer looked terrible, lol. The Navoya armors are adequate throughout most of the journey, imo, and are credit efficient being that the most effective coating is the hp boost and you can sell the rest.

If anything I would like to see the Navoya armor repairer in the shops for purchase so that other ships can try it out.
Was this a permadeath game? I've never succeeded at that with the Manticore, though I expect I could if I were really trying to be careful. If the auton bay can have a small chance of randomly appearing, I don't see why the armor repairer shouldn't.

JohnBWatson wrote:
Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:28 pm
I also like the Manticore as - is. I'd like to see it integrated better with the vanilla Manticore, but other than that it's one of the more unique, balanced ships.
I agree it's interesting, but not that it's balanced. The main advantage is being extra hard for weak enemies to kill, which is not very good compared to the disadvantages.
JohnBWatson wrote:
Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:28 pm
The Freyr is the ship with the issues. It's incredibly OP with the (already OP) dual Flenser, but has no useful early or late game advantages. Improving the Raissermesser energy weapons(preferably with WMD and a damage bonus to compensate for their uselessness in dogfights) would solve our issue in early game, and altering the Flenser cannon in some way to make it more balanced would help with midgame, but for late game it needs a new set of weapons. The Raissermesser launcher is extremely expensive and not particularly useful relative to an enhanced non - ammo thermo weapon(especially the howitzers, of which CC adds even more powerful versions), and the other late game raissermesser weapons have high enough spread that the tiny swivel we're given is useless. On top of that, it's fragile and presents a broad target.

I'm not going to compare it to the Wolfen, because the Wolfen is too much of a master of all to compare anything to - it's got heavy armor, enough slots for any reasonably useful build, and enough speed to outrun any even somewhat enemy in the game without an engine upgrade. That said, it still needs some sort of advantage to be viable.

I would suggest playing up the Freyr as an offense - based ship, and increasing the swivel as compensation for its poor survivability. In order to make it more unique, it could be set up as a ship that forgoes multiple varied weapons for a single powerful one by giving it more device slots and fewer weapon slots.
The swivel is not very powerful and most of the weapons that it's useful with are not very good, as I said, but I still don't think the Freyr is bad. Other than being larger than the Wolfen, Sapphire, and Raijin (but similar in size to the other player ships), I don't see why you consider it fragile.

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Thu Oct 05, 2017 12:47 pm

Out of Constellation, Freyr, and Manticore, Freyr is the least problematic ship. It's only weakness is it is generally outclassed by Wolfen except in cargo space. Manticore has problems. It has off-centered weapons with no other compensation. It is slow and has weakened defenses. If it uses nano repairer, it is more fragile against powerful enemies, especially if not using Novaya armor. If it uses shields, it has a penalty. Constellation cannot mine or smuggle; and it relies on autons, which are not very effective beyond midgame.

If I had to pick among the three ships I want to use, I would pick Freyr because it is the most similar to Sapphire and Wolfen (and Spartan), and it plays like a baseline ship with no gimmicks or glaring weaknesses. Freyr's gimmick may not be as impressive as Raijin's, but at least weapons do not become external. (Raijin's gimmick is a double-edged sword and favors shield-heavy defenses to protect external APD weapons.)

Re: Flensers
I do not think (dual) Flenser is overpowered, it is fine. Maybe a bit strong compared to particle and blast weapons, but it uses a damage type that will be obsolete soon when Flensers should be found. If I use laser and kinetic at level 5+ (i.e., middle of Ungoverned Territories), it had better punch holes in whatever gets shot at. If the game coughs up underleveled enemies like Outlaw Miners or gives the weapon a bit early, it is not the weapon's fault that enemies die quickly.
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Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:50 pm

NMS, No this was not a permadeath run. Unfortunately, I am not good enough at the game yet to give an accurate permadeath analysis. I did not die very often, eight or nine times in total, but I chalk most of the deaths up to inexperience and slow reaction time, as I was able to overcome most obstacles through effective strategies using the Navoya's defenses by pulling a few enemies away and distributing damage across the six plates of armor while firing omni-directional and tracking weapons. I feel the effects boost, particularly the early rad immune and emp immune, for the armor outweigh the immediate damage absorption is most situations as these effects are just as deadly.

I do remember needing to swap out to for a more durable armor earlier in the run for a short period of time when I could not find heavy Navoya armor nearby and I think I used heavy blastplate. At the least two deaths were caused by emp and not being able to retaliate.

Being chased down is a bit of a bummer, but if the manticore could out run all the big nasties there would be no weaknesses in the ship for the game to exploit. Though I was surprised at how much damage the plasma weapons carried by the big ships, I can't remember the name atm, did even though I had advanced Navoya armor with 400 HP I would still be killed with a direct hit and and stiff breeze. The first one of these guys I took down I got lucky; three hits on separate armor plates . I think these were the guys that made me get (heavy thorium armor? 500+50% 750HP) and at that point the game was pretty easy until, DISINTEGRATED! LOL.

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Thu Oct 05, 2017 3:47 pm

@ Norgath: That ship sounds like the Ares' Phobos dreadnought.

Manticore has a net defense penalty, either no shield (nano repairer is not good enough) or weak shield, and standard offense at best (same DPS, but off-centered points may be a pain).

Ideas for powering up Manticore:
* Remove -20% hp shield penalty. That way, player can opt out of the Manticore's gimmick if he wants (or needs to if he cannot find proper armor) and be like NPC Manticores.
* Nano repairer adds some +hp%, somewhere between 20% and 50%, to all armor (to compensate for no shield).
* Some offensive boost to all weapons to live it to its brute force description. Maybe swivel, +20% to damage, or faster fireRate.
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Thu Oct 05, 2017 4:17 pm

I agree that the Manticore should be able to survive a single burst of pretty much anything with appropriate equipment. The APA has been changed so that it's no longer a factor here, but the Lightning Turret still presents issues here. I'd like to see a resistance system that lets heavy armor shrug off light weapons fire here - non - WMD damage should be less effective against heavier kinds of armor. This would also make fighting capital ships more interesting.

Regarding the Flenser, nothing really resists it all that much. It shreds Wind and Steel slavers, which should be able to shrug off low - tech weapons given their faction's preference for preying on poorer, weaker, lower tech targets. It's also incredibly effective against everything the Marauders have to offer(their Destroyer notwithstanding, but it's one of those enemies that can absorb damage for ages). In addition, Urak destroyers are very easy to kill with it, and it's cheap and common enough that you can even find one to use against the Charon pirates fairly often. Finally, it's the most effective weapon in the game against Dwarg masters, blocking their EMP weapon and taking them apart in seconds. Anything kills outlaw miners easily enough, so that's not really an issue. It's a weapon with no real weaknesses that can carry you through two thirds of the game with minimal difficulty.
Other than being larger than the Wolfen, Sapphire, and Raijin (but similar in size to the other player ships), I don't see why you consider it fragile.
Lower armor weight limit, and it can't run away from everything like the Wolfen or Sapphire can.

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Fri Oct 06, 2017 8:17 pm

@ JBW: Many of the enemies you mention have relatively poor defenses, especially Wind Slavers with level 2 armor as their sole defense. Seeing that flensers are level 4 or 5, dominating New Beyond (levels 1-3) is to be expected. In Ungoverned Terriories? Sounds much like dual laser cannon in New Beyond - powerful, but not too overwhelming against level-appropriate targets, which Ungoverned Territories do not always generate, admittedly. Seeing that dual Flenser has less DPS than dual x-ray cannon, it needs to have some advantage, which it does with range and WMD (and swivel for Freyr players).

Back on topic, another weird idea for Manticore - add interior or hull points. After armor is breached, Manticore has some reserve health (say, from 50 to 100 hull hp) to withstand more damage. Of course, we need a way to repair interior, but such a service and/or device support made official would be handy for mods or even future official extensions that feature bigger ships that have hull.
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PM wrote:
Fri Oct 06, 2017 8:17 pm
@ JBW: Many of the enemies you mention have relatively poor defenses, especially Wind Slavers with level 2 armor as their sole defense. Seeing that flensers are level 4 or 5, dominating New Beyond (levels 1-3) is to be expected. In Ungoverned Terriories? Sounds much like dual laser cannon in New Beyond - powerful, but not too overwhelming against level-appropriate targets, which Ungoverned Territories do not always generate, admittedly. Seeing that dual Flenser has less DPS than dual x-ray cannon, it needs to have some advantage, which it does with range and WMD (and swivel for Freyr players).
I mentioned nearly every enemy in the Ungoverned Territories. Given that the weapons that the player is expected to use in that region(the lancer, particle cannon, starcannon, and TeV9, to name a few) generally fare worse than the Flenser, something's off. While I agree that a large part of the issue is that enemies in the Ungoverned Territories don't really resist kinetic damage enough to make the new damagetypes useful, I'm still skeptical of a weapon that has high damage, range, firerate, and projectile speed while also having low cost and low power use. I feel like it needs a drawback.
Back on topic, another weird idea for Manticore - add interior or hull points. After armor is breached, Manticore has some reserve health (say, from 50 to 100 hull hp) to withstand more damage. Of course, we need a way to repair interior, but such a service and/or device support made official would be handy for mods or even future official extensions that feature bigger ships that have hull.
It's interesting, but it wouldn't really scale with level well. The player would be nigh - invincible at the start of the game, but the small amount of extra health would be completely useless by the end of the game. Admittedly, the current gimmick isn't perfect there either, but it does try to keep up.

The issues with balancing internal HP are part of the reason I want heavier armor segments to reduce non - WMD damage rather than have static internal HP values for each ship. Ships with heavier armor would play differently, there'd be a more concrete tradeoff between speed and defenses, and playerships heavy enough for WMD to be relevant wouldn't need to suffer so heavily in late game.

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Sat Oct 07, 2017 12:18 pm

I consider tier 1 damage type sufficient drawback for Flenser and X-ray cannon. They are like crutch characters - great now, obsolete fairly quickly.

As for heavy armor reducing non-WMD damage, most energy weapons do not have WMD. Internals needing WMD to hurt efficiently is already a pain. (I already consider putting WMD on all of my mod weapons even if it does not make sense, just so killing things does not take all day.) I remember people writing that late game is mainly a howitzer game, maybe because of prevalence of hardened targets that need WMD to hurt?

More hp on heavier armor makes sense, but they typically do not give enough extra hp. I think one VotG heavy armor has a puny amount of hp more than its normal counterpart.
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