Balance final tweaks/changes before Beta 3

General discussion for the game Anacreon
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Mon Mar 20, 2017 1:13 am

Sorry- I was referring to George's post in what's now the Era 2 reference thread.

Increasing armor on Jumpcruisers will reduce Starfrigate effectiveness, so that's not great. Right now they don't have a high kill % per combat round as their relative damage has been reduced a lot.

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Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:04 pm

Something to really throw out there that is quite annoying, but not quite frustrating, is the lack of ability to defend from an attacker. This is a global game and as of right now and blitzes are still possible if the empires are too close with. What I'm saying is that we need auto fire missiles from the citadels otherwise it is too easy to ravage an empire while they are AFK. There is no threat to an attacker; all the walls are down, gates are open still.

I think Imperium's attack on Conquistador (my empire) shows that the old style of playing can still happen, wiping out months of work or whatever while you are asleep. Personally I think it's a problem because someone can wait until old RoR goes on vacation again and give him the shaft 8-) , and I don't think he appreciates that very much :wink:
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Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:11 pm

Hehe, yes that's true. I agree, autofiring jumpmissiles would be a good addition in the next Era of the game. Although to be fair, expanding too close and building jumpyards within 250ly of another empire's borders pretty much signals a call to arms. Building planetary defenses can be worthwhile, I noticed your counterattack (which had to come the LONG way round the nebular, 6 hours travel time at least :P ) didn't touch my key worlds which were reinforced by plasma towers and hypersonics...

So... don't leave jumpyads undefended, lest they be used against the owner.
Don't place sector capitals within 250ly of an enemy jumpyard.
Do make sure citadels are well defended, and overlaps with another citadel's firing radius.
Do make sure foundations, hubs and capitals are building a variety of static defenses. Add Gorgos if desired.

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Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:08 pm

Minotaurs seem to be, in general, the best overall all-purpose unit. Looking at the macro scale of a real war which I had, not just unit stats, they can pretty much fight the whole war by themselves. They can take any world with HEL cannons and satellites with minimal casualties, as they have the same R:15 and can one shot the defenses. They are reasonably quick, don't require jumpbeacons, and make short work of jumpship response fleets.

There isn't a solid counter apart from hypersonics, which are OP and going to be nerfed anyway. Plus, bringing a small Eldritch escort along to use against said hypersonics negates this counter too. Plasma towers and armored sats do whittle down their numbers a bit, but realistically won't even dent the 6 million strong fleets common in the endgame.

From this, jumpcruisers should counter gunships using missiles and superior armor, but don't appear to be very effective. Starcruisers are a soft counter but can't respond as quickly. We should decrease gunship damage if decreasing jumpcruiser armor isn't an option. Is this reasonable?

Actually, looking at the counter chart everything works as expected with the exception of jumpcruiser vs gunship, and starcruiser vs starfrigate. Mainly because cannons are so much better than missiles...
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Tue Mar 21, 2017 3:13 pm

Based on what has recently become known about the combat system, I would expect units with AoE to be the most appropriate counter to gunships since gunships pack more units/cell than other designations. As I understand it, each pixel in a wing stands for 16 gunships, which would be expected to each take full damage from a SINGLE AoE missile strike since they effectively have no distance between them. My limited combat tests suggest that either AoE is not working as described right now, or some others aspect of how missiles work is reducing their destructiveness so much that only the addition of AoE damage makes them even slightly effective.

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Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:01 am

I support a 50% increase in attack damage for low tech starfrigates (Manta, Defiance) since their WU costs are quite close to their high-tech counterparts. High and low tech starcruisers can remain as is despite having similar WU ratios- the TL 10 worlds that build the high tech starcruisers are challenging to achieve and maintain.

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Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:26 pm

Is it possible (and easy) to adjust the secession limits? Right now sector capitals have a chance to secede if the empire is not in L&O, has more than 2 capitals AND more than 100 worlds. For temporary balance, to make the other doctrines worth considering, perhaps we could increase the limit to say 6 capitals and 300 worlds? Who is in favor of this? That would make it somewhat viable to play as T&E (which is fun), or S&H/F&M if you want to just build ships. However L&O is still attractive if you want a 600+ world mega empire. If you do support this, please say whether 6 capitals and 300 worlds is reasonable or not? I skimmed through the Anacreon source real quick on github last night but couldn't find any variables which relate to the secession limits. If I find them I'll put them here.

+50% attack for Manta and Defiance added to list, unless there are other objections?

EDIT: Actually the more I think about it the more reasonable it sounds. There should be a definite point to doctrines (which will be implemented later), but for now a quick and easy fix would be to increase the secession limits. L&O is still advantageous, but not as much as before compared to other doctrines. 300 worlds is plenty and a 300 world T&E empire can compete with an 800 world L&O empire if all those worlds are exporting to Mesophon in exchange for endless fleets of high tech starcruisers.

Second edit: is there actually going to be a Beta 3? Or should we continue playing on the Beta 2 map. Anticipation of a new game is why I've neglected my current empire for the most part...
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Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:07 pm

I would definitely like to see a new map.

Law and Order has secessionAdj: { value:0.1 op:factor } in its CoreLibrary files, which I interpret as a base 90% reduction in secession risk that is secondarily supplemented by the secession risk reduction that imperial guards provided.

I discussed secessions and limits in this ministry post (which predates the 250LY limit for sector capitals). While my suggestions are a little to ambitious for a tweak, I think that current secession mechanics are badly flawed, although I have not personally experienced one.

As I understand it, secession occurs instantly and a sector capital secession is a semi-random catastrophe that does not provide adequate warning, which is very difficult to recover from, and which the player cannot prevent other than by restricting their own growth or adopting the L&O doctrine.

I think that instant secessions should be replaced with larger-than-normal civil wars which players have a chance to head off, with frequency increasing as empire size expands, adjusted by the secessionAdj factor. NPC secession empires should be automatically hostile to their former sovereign (so that they can be recaptured.)

A better-than-F&M-and-worse-than-L&O secessionAdj for T&E makes intuitive sense, although I worry that the addition of all ship classes to Mesophon will make large T&E empires overpowered in long games with low hostility levels given that AEs are not subject to attrition.

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Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:22 pm

Mesophon ship prices also need to be tweaked, since they are based on Era 2 power values rather than supply-chain-inclusive WU cost. Mesophon has incredible bargains on low-tech ships, which can be purchased for less than their build cost. This wasn't noticed in Era 2 since the only low-tech ships for sale were the Reliant, Manta and Behemoth, none of which were viable combat units. It has the potential to be a big issue in Era 3.

Justification here.

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Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:11 pm

Uh oh, that's bad. See my reply in the other thread concerning Mesophon...

So, looks like there is no hard limit vars to change in the code, only a secession chance. Well, that doesn't work. Perhaps adjust the secession chance formula to include sector capitals only, instead of number of worlds? I don't know. Quite busy right now, I'll look at the code later this week and see if there is anything easily changeable...
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Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:56 pm

It is probably hard-coded.

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Thu Mar 23, 2017 1:22 am

If the capital limit is increased, it should be only to 3 or 4. 6 would allow a huge section of the map to be claimed. I do agree sector capitals should be limited in ability to defect, maybe give them the same rate as in L&O, while other non-capitals have the same high rate if doctrine is not L&O.

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Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:41 am

The game engine should be flexible enough to accommodate different map sizes, which means IMO that the limits should be a function of map size and possibly total planet count (and explicitly stated each game). I have a ticket about it. Also consider that if there were more active players or things like AI empires and non-empire entities that control planets for whatever reason (some things in the game library seem to implicitly suggest that there could be planets with non-human populations although no specific definitions are given), there would be less opportunity for empires to expand wildly and a higher capital:planet ratio would be necessary just to find space to expand into..

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Sat Mar 25, 2017 7:50 pm

Does it stand to be reasonable for requesting a larger map size? 5000 star systems is enough I agree, but the map feels a bit crowded from time to time.

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Tue Mar 28, 2017 4:58 pm

How do people feel about all players starting with like 100,000 AEs and letting T&E empires build infantry on capitals by adding the Militia Base structure or letting the starport primary structure build infantry? I think it would be a major improvement until T&E can be totally revised, so that new players who unwittingly switch to T&E don't lose the entire productivity of their capital until they realize their error.

For flavor they could instead build something like:

Code: Select all

ResourceType core.riotDrone
	{
	category: groundUnit
	name: "riot drone squadron"
	attackValue: 3
	isCargo: true
	mass: 10.0
	halfLife: 3.0
	elementCount: 5000

	attack: { name:"microwave emitter" damage:3 type:direct range:0.0 area:0.1 }
	defense: { armor:1 minArea:10.0 }

	noRebellionDefection: true
	secessionAdj: 0.9						//	Per 1000 brigades

	production: {
		workUnits: 500.0
		inputs: ()
		minTechLevel: 5
		}
	}
which gives you an easily-transported, punchy combat unit that has high attrition and deters secession but not rebellion, but is also not susceptible to civil war defection.

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