THE GALACTIC ARENA!!!

General discussion for the game Anacreon
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catfighter
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Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:10 am

Yes, I'm aware. The only reason I sent out the explorers was to scout out possible new arenas, but that was outvoted. I never even looked at any of the worlds they were by, I just sent them out to cover the max possible fog-of-war (as if exploring unconquered space). All explorers are being recalled, doctrine set to L&O, and I'll try to kill the other planets to make them free worlds if it is so voted (probably still keep them if you guys really want to use one as a defensive citadel).

6cef, by admin i mean anyone who finnian has shared the password with (i don't know who else besides me).

Finnian, you may consider posting the user/password for all to see if you really want it to be completely neutral, but it runs the risk of some prankster abdicating the arena, changing the password, or attacking someone and blaming one of us.

What I originally thought was for there to be several Arenas throughout the galaxy (the only reason any planets were conquered at all was to try to start a shipyard to take said new arenas; failed miserably, of course, mostly because i forgot about it and just left the explorers/stingers wherever they happened to be). This was intended to provide convenience for more distant empires and a slightly shorter-term option for starship combat, but the idea seems unpopular and starships from eastern empires appear to be getting in fine if people don't mind the wait. If it is voted okay, I'll set up a single sector cap in the west (vote where, if you vote yes) so westerners can use starships and then I'll destroy the entire arena fleet myself so that nobody can say it was used for anything.
Behold my avatar, one of the few ships to be drawn out pixel by pixel in the dreaded... Microsoft Paint!

Day 31: "I have successfully completed my time reversal experiment! Muahahaha!!!"
Day 30: "I might have run into a little problem here."

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Finnian
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Wed Apr 01, 2015 9:24 am

I think we are all satisfed. I gave the key to Jaerevar cause I had no time to manage and because he offered himself, also, it is allways better to split the control of an important institution.

I want to share the arena key with less people possible because it give access to many personal information: for example one of my personal e-mail.. :| it is not hard to find a way to identificate the facebook profile and others thing like that. It can be risky.
I am sure you understand.

Of course I like you all, Anacreon Players, but now I don't want to confuse too much the personal dimension with the play dimension.
For all of you I want to remain simply the friendly ambassador of the Finnians :)
IN GEORGE WE TRUST

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Finnian
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Tue Apr 07, 2015 4:22 pm

what about the experiment of the explorers?
IN GEORGE WE TRUST

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Wed Apr 08, 2015 3:28 pm

Arena Combat Report

Summary: 2000 Victory-class attacked 500 Eldritch and defeated them with no casualties.

Combat Report: Eldritch-class have missile protection but in this case massed fire eliminated them from beyond their cannons' range (Victory-class have range:20). Eldritches formed two wings of 250 ships and Victories formed 4 wings of 500. I think there must be only one interception/combat round, so if more missile-armed ships are firing on a wing during a combat round than there are ships in or near that wing with missile protection, the missiles can get through. Starcruiser missiles have an "explosion" effect when they hit that jumpcruiser missiles don't appear to have, but I don't know what this signifies, if anything (can multiple ships get destroyed with one shot?)

Could longer interception range (like on starfrigates) allow more interceptions? An earlier attack on a similar number of starfrigates didn't result in any starfrigate casualties even after hours of continuous fire (this might have been a bug, since the attack lasted 24 hours without starcruisers being destroyed either even though starfrigates have range:20 too and should have been able to fire back.)

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catfighter
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Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:35 am

Most unfortunate, that, but that's why stingers can defeat high-tech ships with ease once you get into the tens or hundreds of thousands of ships.

I also wondered about the explosion. Someone requested a while ago that starships be able to take out more than one jumpship per shot, but I don't know if this was implemented or not.
Behold my avatar, one of the few ships to be drawn out pixel by pixel in the dreaded... Microsoft Paint!

Day 31: "I have successfully completed my time reversal experiment! Muahahaha!!!"
Day 30: "I might have run into a little problem here."

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Sat Apr 11, 2015 2:37 pm

Arena Combat Report

Summary: 1800 Victory-class starcruisers lost horribly to a comparable fleet strength of Siriuses.

Combat Report: Oh boy. I had this notion that starcruisers were good against gunships but that is clearly not the case, at least for fleets of a single ship type. 1800 Victories, with fleet strength 36000, attacked about 41000 Sirius-class and 6800 Minotaurs, with combined fleet strength of 37330.

The starcruisers were totally destroyed. The gunships lost only 3,000 Siriuses. That is absolutely shameful performance by the starcruisers given their cost. Frankly, at this point I have no idea what purpose starcruisers are supposed to serve. Maybe they perform better in mixed fleets? I'm doubtful.

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Sun Apr 12, 2015 6:40 am

Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote:Frankly, at this point I have no idea what purpose starcruisers are supposed to serve.
I'm going to say that they're just big numbers used to pacify high-TL worlds that want a lot of "defenses". (almost the only thing I ever used them for, until I realized that my jumpyards for adamants/undines could produce bigger numbers faster)

I attacked a single TL 6 planet with energy-weapon-only defenses (my fleet of 12000 sf VS their measly 2500 sf) and my fleet took 36% casualties before clearing the world for transports. I promptly gave up hope for them, withdrew the ships to my capital, and ignored them until they attritioned out of existence.
Behold my avatar, one of the few ships to be drawn out pixel by pixel in the dreaded... Microsoft Paint!

Day 31: "I have successfully completed my time reversal experiment! Muahahaha!!!"
Day 30: "I might have run into a little problem here."

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Tue Apr 14, 2015 12:08 am

Arena Combat Report

Summary:

1480 Siriuses (forces: 990)
attack
11000 Stingers (forces: 990)

Stingers win. 6700 Stingers survive, 175 Siriuses survive.

3240 siriuses (forces: 2170, cost: 1.7 million labor not counting minerals)
attack
6700 Stingers (forces: 603, cost: 1.7 million labor not counting minerals)

Siriuses win first round. 3300 Stingers survive, 3060 Siriuses survive.
Siriuses win second round. 1600 Stingers survive, 2910 Siriuses survive.

In an invasion scenario there wouldn't have been escapees like this; I wonder what determines when combat ends for fleet-fleet combat.

My impression was that gunships are intended to counter jumpships, so their failure at forces parity was disappointing. Then it occurred to me that when comparing forces I should be considering the cost of building the damn things rather than their mysterious space power. When I did that, the Siriuses won decisively. I guess the takeaway here is that Siruses will beat a force of 2x as many stingers but not 7.5x as many. I used my labor cost calculates from my Q&A thread before realizing that those don't account for minerals. The mineral labor cost ratio is harder to predict since it depends on abundance but assuming equal parity with abundant deposits of hex and trillum the Sirius requires 525+9+45=579 labor and the Stinger requires 252+6+9=267 labor, so it doesn't alter the ratio very much and Stingers can be built at a 2:1 ratio against Siriuses but have no hope in hell of winning at a 2:1 ratio, which makes sense. If somebody wants.

I repeated it with Siriuses vs. Eldritches. Sirius is 579 adjusted labor and Eldritch is 400+24+31.5+149=604.5, so actually about 1.5x as expensive as I had thought it was (maybe more, since abundant chronimium planets are scarce enough that a lot of people are mining it from Major worlds, which raises cost to over 750.

I'd like to to try Eldritches at about labor cost parity with Siriuses to see how they do. I have a fleet of Siriuses up at the Arena; somebody attack them with a slightly smaller Eldritch fleet (numerical, not space forces) and tell me how it goes.

Do you suppose attackers or defenders get any sort of advantage? If someone wants to try attacking the fleet with a double force of Stingers instead and tell me how that goes.

I'm gonna have to go back and redo my tables. Oh boy...

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Tue Apr 14, 2015 6:59 am

I sent 14000 eldritches against the 14000 siriuses. The fight ended with the gunships retreating while the jumpfleet suffered a 25% loss (10300 remain). What I found interesting was that the eldritches made good use of their range advantage. Every time the two fleets passed each other, the jumpships got off a couple of extra shots before and after the gunships got in range.

So it looks like jumpships can go toe to toe against (if not outright demolish) fleets of any ship type. Gunships can defeat them for cost, but are far from a hard counter. I suspect the main reason for that is gunship weapons, or any other weapon for that matter, overkill jumpships by a really wide margin. The sirius's 60 and minotaur's 100 damage attack is meaningless against an eldritch that only has 25 armor. If space force rating takes into account attack damage, then gunship fleet strengths would be greatly inflated above their true power.

Now I suspect the ideal fleet setup is starfrigates + explorers. The problem with overkill damage is even worse with the gorgos, but at least it has good durability and can abuse the hell out of its range advantage. Helions are only marginally weaker than stingers, but should be spammable in even greater numbers since they need no components. They have only 8 armor, but will still take one hit to kill. I'd be very interested in seeing a stinger vs helion battle.

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Tue Apr 14, 2015 2:22 pm

I have a theory that jumpcruisers and other missile-based defenses might actually be an effective counter to explorers, but it needs more testing. It doesn't make intuitive sense but... I'll send some Undine fleets down of different sizes so people can try explorers against them.

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Tue Apr 14, 2015 8:14 pm

Sending some to test now. But, much like the planetary defenses test, the real issue is numbers and resource cost. Helions are insanely cheap compared to Eldritchs, not only in raw resources but also in worlds used (since they don't need a component, all the worlds that you would have to set to component autofacs can also be jumpyards). To compare, I have a ton of paired jumpyards/facs worlds in my empire, maybe 30+ pairs, with slightly more than half being cave worlds (so a fair bit of production). These sustain my Eldritch fleet, which currently sits at 9.5 million and will top out at about 11 million for all practical purposes.

Compare this to the one cluster that i use to make Helions. I have six cave scoutyards there and these sustain a fleet that has hit a rough cap of 6 million. So a single cave scoutyard (tech level 10, all hab structures, high efficiency etc) can sustain a fleet of 1 million Helions (probably slightly more, with how attrition works, but you get the idea). Even a tiny, less than ten world empire can put out quiet a large scout fleet. I've actually been tempted to flip all my Eldritch production to Helions, just for the fun of having a 50 million+ jumpfleet. But I'm a little afraid of what may happen.

EDIT: Well, that was odd. Sent 10,000 Helions vs the 2,400 Undines you have on the Arena. No casualties for the Undines, 50% for the Helions. The whole thing was just one long silly chase, the Helions never got in range, seemed to have the same speed as the Undines. The combat began in high orbit, with the Helions following the Undines and being pelted. Every 10 seconds or so both fleets changed to a lower orbit, with the Helions doing it slightly before and gaining a little ground on the Undines. By the time they reached satellite level we hit 50% casualties, then the Helions went back to a high orbit without a retreat. Very odd. Want to try half a million Helions vs the 100,000 Undines you have next door?

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Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:27 am

That's what they're there for- go for it.

Keep in mind that single-ship fleets may perform differently from mixed fleets and that most combat in-game involves planetary defenses that make low orbit hazardous for one of the parties involved in the combat. Orbital switch speed is definitely a bit unknown factor right now.

Send about 6 Helions/Undine. That's the ground-up absolute labor cost ratio, factoring in every phase of production including mineral extraction (assuming abundant deposits.) TL-related consumer goods consumption to generate that labor isn't factored into this ratio, I'll handwave that away for the time being.

I think the new labor costs table at the bottom my FAQ is another step closer to a direct comparison of the cost of building different ships.

Wayward Device
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Wed Apr 15, 2015 7:46 pm

Ok, 82,000 Undines vs 492,000 Helions

Combat ended with the same no-retreat-message retreat with 19,000 Undines and 61,000 Helions remaining. For the most part it was pretty even, with equal casualty rates until it got down to sub-100,000 Helions. By that point combat was at extremely low orbit, just above the surface and the low number of units started to allow the Undines superior range to come into play, more of their salvos were able to hit without retaliation letting them win with 23% surviving vs the Helion's 13%. All in all a pretty interesting battle.

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Thu Apr 16, 2015 12:36 pm

The way to balance starcruisers and explorers would be to have missiles- but not cannons- splash any leftover damage to another ship in a wing when they successfully overkill a ship by a certain amount, repeating until the total damage from the shot has been spread across as many ships as it takes to absorb it. This would let starcruisers be effective against gunships and jumpcruisers, and would make jumpcruisers the strong counter to explorers, without otherwise affecting gameplay balance in any way. Maybe missiles could also splash damage to ground-based defenses above a certain threshold, but not to satellites.

In some cases it might allow missile-armed ships to get a few more casualties against basic jumpships when their volume of fire is high enough slip a couple of missiles past missile defense but otherwise gameplay balance wouldn't really be affected in any meaningful way.

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Fri Apr 17, 2015 9:50 pm

Missiles definately need something. Because right now it's "enjoy your damage slower, completely negated by some things and more expensive? Missiles!". I thought I saw a post here somewhere talking about one of the high tech star or ramships having a (visual at least) blast but I can't find it now.

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