Era 3 feedback

General discussion for the game Anacreon
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Era 3 feedback

Post by --Imperator-- » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:45 am

Well, it's a nice Sunday and it looks like we've all had the opportunity to play around for about a good 2 weeks now. I'm sure we've all got to build and test a variety of units, and for some of us (like me) actually use them against other players. So does anyone have any feedback about the unit balance changes in general?

I suggested the majority of the tweaks to unit stats prior to the Era 3 update. So far, is it all working out okay? Are there any units which seem drastically over- or under-powered? Does every unit fill a role and is useful in some way (i.e. counters some other unit)?

I'll start: I think most things are relatively balanced.
  • Planetary defenses especially, increasing their range allows them to inflict a minimum 5-10% of casualties against invaders, being at least marginally useful in slowing the advance of a battlefleet compared to before when they were one-shotted before doing anything.
  • There is no way to avoid casualties altogether against defenses anymore, unless you send starcruisers as siege units which outrange everything else. Minotaurs can one-shot autocannons and HELs but get smacked by hypersonics, plasma and armored sats. In contrast Eldritches are immune to missiles but are eaten up by the longer range cannon defenses. Adamants and Undines are slightly better against both but still take casualties as their missiles don't hit instantly.
  • The jumpship beacon idea was terrific (kudos to whoever came up with that one!), and definitely makes the game a lot slower paced. That is, I don't have to check in every day to see if my empire just got razed to ashes by a surprise blitz.
The only gripe so far is that there still isn't a strong motivation to build and deploy low tech ships in combat. Yes, they are cheaper, but the production bonuses at higher tech levels offsets the cost of high tech ships by a lot. One can produce more high tech ships than low tech ones given the same number of worlds, which probably shouldn't be the case, elsewise everyone just goes for high tech. I think the fleets of a low tech empire should outnumber a high tech one's by 2:1 in order to stand a chance, so MAYBE the production costs of low tech ships should be adjusted for this to happen...

Just my 2 cents. Great game! Haven't really played anything like it. GalCiv, Stellaris, Sins of a Solar Empire, all similar but Anacreon is really unique in some way.
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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Oddball » Sun Apr 30, 2017 5:17 pm

I played a little in era 1 not much. This era less than a week, (including restarts) so here are a couple of observations.
I am being crowded out by 2 big empires. What is the optimum time frame for each game? I am curious with such a short period of time how does one learn the game?
There are several new start up empires just taking up space. How long does a non active startup exist on the map before disappearing? One of them has been idling for 17 cycles.
Don't have enough experience yet to comment on game play. Thanks to all for another great game.

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Watch TV, Do Nothing » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:08 pm

Games have tides of imperial rise and decline depending on which players are active. Usually small empires can carve out territory in the gaps between large empires, since they are (mostly) protected to attack from large empires as long as they don't attack them first. One strategy that has worked well for small empires in the past is to set up a sector capital far away from their primary capital in a less crowded region, and then focus on colonizing this region. In practice sector capitals aren't much different from the imperial capital (although they aren't jumpbeacons if you're not F&M), so it's not an issue if your imperial capital region is poorly developed. In Era 3 you might need gunships to get to a good part of space, as jumpfleets don't always have the range needed to get to a less populated zone.

Large empires can be shredded by teamups by small empires, get gutted while inactive, or abdicate in frustration after an attack that they might be theoretically able to bounce back from. Often small empires will capitalize on wars between large empires by attacking the player that looks likely to lose; this can earn them both planets and goodwill from their co-belligerent(s).

Inactive player empires disappear after 30(?) days with no activity.

Some NPC "Warlord" empires are part of the game scenario and will never abdicate. They aren't counted towards the total number of players in a game. You can usually tell these because they can have imperial capitals that aren't earthlike worlds (although a player who has lost his or her capital could have the capital transfer to a sector capital, so this isn't diagnostic on its own.)

"Anor Kingdom" "Bok Empire" "Caledonia" "Kingdom of Dagronna" "Efreet Republic" "Faorn Empire" "Gaulton Empire" "Haleborn Kingdom" "Imryrr Empire" "Kingdom of Johenna" "Kalidorn" "Lastrome Oligarchy" "Muriel Union" "Ni'altor Empire" "Olos Guaran" "Psyphor Domain" "Rone Kingdom" "Surolon" "Lok Trall" "Ur'anor Republic" are all the possible Warlord empire names.

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by TheBugKing » Mon May 01, 2017 2:05 am

I really think that the game benefited most from the jumpbeacons. This makes a lot of the tactics and other technology's much more useful. Like my favorite jumpmissles...... and the bug fix where you can't blockade the "fire missiles" button, lost an empire because of that Imperium. Also, the introduction of the jumpbeacons has really led to a much more lively and tactical game style that a game like this should be. I also agree that it makes the game not as prone to random strikes. The enemy must at least TRY to defeat you and the defender has a least a chance of defending. Unless they have.....total jump access! :roll:

While extraordinarily aggravating to conquer the independent worlds, the useful planetary defenses are a nice touch. They should prove interesting in combat. I am not sure if Imperium had to deal with many of the planet defenses as his war was so early in the game, but now... some of the capital planetary defenses seem quite formidable and also this may have nullified the "shield and hammer" strategy.

The dynamics of war have shifted with the change in ship parameters. I have come to the conclusion, as I have voiced before, that the A.I. is lacking. Perhaps this has to do with the ship parameters though, and the A.I. does not know how to use the knew changes well?

I would like to know the details of Imerpium's war, which so far is the only war that has been conducted within the new parameters.
Maybe a few answers+ could be: How did your fleets respond to the planetary defenses, how did the tactics change since there were a few instances that you had to use starship fleets, etc.. to your discretion.
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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by --Imperator-- » Mon May 01, 2017 7:16 am

TheBugKing wrote:
Mon May 01, 2017 2:05 am
I would like to know the details of Imerpium's war, which so far is the only war that has been conducted within the new parameters.
Maybe a few answers+ could be: How did your fleets respond to the planetary defenses, how did the tactics change since there were a few instances that you had to use starship fleets, etc.. to your discretion.
1. I didn't. There were little to no defenses to respond to. I scouted Tricor extensively beforehand and realised they were too weak to hold their own worlds, much less help me hold the north for our "alliance".
2. I didn't use starship fleets either. Too slow, and doesn't fit my style of surprise attacking. Tricor was right next to me and in range of my jumpbeacons. So I captured their jumpship yards first, which were again very poorly defended. Now their capital was in range and I just sent a jumpfleet to nab it. They tried moving a couple thousand Adamants up as a last ditch attempt to defend but that was mostly ineffective.
3. They abdicated shortly after I captured several other sector capitals. Which was strange, as the majority of his fleet was still intact and they could have mounted some sort of guerilla war like AdmiralZo attempted against me in Beta 2.

From all that, I would just say make sure all your important worlds are very well defended. Also I think people tend to give up too early when they've only lost a few battles, but not the war. It's too easy for me to go for a shock and awe strategy, grab a few capitals and hope they abdicate in desperation. I remember in Beta 2 I attacked NEWBIE, an empire about 10x my size and they abdicated just after losing their first battle. :?

I would only abdicate if: (1) your fleet is completely wiped out. I mean only if it's been totally and utterly decimated with not even 1000 ships left. (2) you're down to the last capital. (3) you've captured any world from an enemy who's winning. This is because they can continue attacking you even after you're <50% of their IM. Abdication is only a last resort to not give them the satisfaction of nabbing your final capital.

No surrender, no retreat. Death before dishonour, that kind of thing, yeah?
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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Oddball » Mon May 01, 2017 1:01 pm

Before I try to expand, I needed to read up on how to do it. After some experimentation within my domain, I am thinking a colony/transport starship is needed. Why allow jump transports to travel with gunships or starships? Do the gunships carry jump beacons? I think a new design very expensive huge colony/transports starship should be developed which travels at a slower rate than the current 2ly available to the gunships. After all you are sending your empire's on a danger fraught journey into the unknown reaches of space.

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Watch TV, Do Nothing » Mon May 01, 2017 3:33 pm

Imperator, based on your war results can you verify that when you capture a jumpship yard outside of sector capital radius it still projects a beacon?
Oddball wrote:
Mon May 01, 2017 1:01 pm
Why allow jump transports to travel with gunships or starships? Do the gunships carry jump beacons?
Fleets have always traveled with the propulsion method and speed of their slowest member. You can think of it as the warp ships towing the jumpships, which are physically much smaller. I think that this has been true since old Anacreon, where the distinction between warp and jump propulsion involved not just speed but also attack order - warp fleets moved at the beginning of the turn, which allowed them to attack in the same turn; jumpfleets moved at the end of the turn, allowing the enemy a turn to respond. Merged fleets moved and attacked using warp rules.

I think that warp transports might come eventually and I favor their implementation (particularly if constructions get added), but mergeable jumptransports are a good intermediate compromise until some game mechanics are changed. Current game mechanics are not friendly to a large transport unit because transports are so vulnerable in combat. They seem to be a priority target, don't defend themselves, other ships aren't good at defending them, large transports would still take many casualties from jumpmissile strikes unless they were very heavily armored, etc. The combat equations seem to be less harsh to large fleets of weak units than to small fleets of strong units (I think this might be because AoE attacks don't work or are not very effective.) A large transport would carry more infantry, but this means that when it gets destroyed in combat the loss to your empire is proportionally much greater, even if the unit itself is inexpensive. A small transport that can bug out at jumpspeed if a situation goes bad has definite advantages over a large warp transport right now.
Oddball wrote:
Mon May 01, 2017 1:01 pm
I am thinking a colony/transport starship is needed.


One thing that is different about Anacreon relative to other 4xs, at least right now, is that there is no colonization mechanic. The galaxy is already fully colonized by humans and any expansion (even to independent worlds) is an act of war. Perhaps in the future there could be a system where uninhabited worlds are opened to colonization but right units have to be militarily viable.

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by --Imperator-- » Mon May 01, 2017 11:55 pm

Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote:
Mon May 01, 2017 3:33 pm
Imperator, based on your war results can you verify that when you capture a jumpship yard outside of sector capital radius it still projects a beacon?
I'm fairly sure it does, IIRC. Which is why defending them is so important.
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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Oddball » Thu May 04, 2017 2:15 pm

Are multiple accounts legal? All of a sudden I have several brand new empires spawning in my territory, with no activity. Curious minds :)

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by --Imperator-- » Thu May 04, 2017 3:03 pm

Oddball wrote:
Thu May 04, 2017 2:15 pm
Are multiple accounts legal?
Nope, and generally frowned upon. People can use them to instigate wars, troll other players (by attacking then abdicating) or just name their worlds obnoxious things in general. It's happened before.

Having said that, there is no actual mechanism in place to prevent the creation of such troll accounts. So that might be something to look into.
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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Oddball » Fri May 05, 2017 2:15 pm

Some more observations from a newbie.
It was very disconcerting to see the map explored and mostly conquered in 2 weeks, which was when I joined lol.

Thinking about map expansion, if I had to develop and build a star explorer that would have really slowed things down for me. Especially if it required level 10 Tech to develop. A very good reason why one would need level 10 tech worlds :twisted: . I am still struggling with which worlds can be raised to what tech levels. As it stands now I am stuck with several yards not able to get beyond tech level 7 or 8. I haven't played with the foundation designation yet so not sure how those abilities will improve my quandary.

I love the charts thank you so much. Makes finding information pretty easy and I really appreciate everyone's in depth explanations to my questions. Very helpful. Thank you so much! I will have to dl the game and play solo to get a better feel for all the planetary nuances :wink:

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by --Imperator-- » Fri May 05, 2017 3:23 pm

Okay, so you need foundations to advance worlds past TL7. At TL8 or 9 you'll be much more powerful as then you can build the "good" units. Designate a foundation world, make sure its supplied, and import tech levels from it.

The absolute easiest way (IMO) for a new player is to use trade clusters. See the image below for an example. You have a capital, trade hub and foundation all packed nice and close. Everything in range of the trade hub and foundation imports from these worlds. The hub and foundation import from each other, and the capital from both. Then pull out a calculator, get how many exports/imports should come in from each production world and set that as the percentage on the trade hub. Just make sure to defend those 3 core worlds very very well!
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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by starxplor » Wed May 17, 2017 3:50 am

It would be nice if there was a way to see a history of messages. Both messages at the capital, such as from other players, as well as messages at other planets, like lacking food/support, rebellion status changes, and change of control messages.

EDIT 1:
Also, toggle-able overlays would be nice. Something like "show own fleets" "show opponent fleets" "show all fleets" "show independent world tags"(name/type), "show opponent world tags", "show own world tags", "show all (and only) world tags", and so on.

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Oddball » Sun May 21, 2017 2:46 pm

Is there any way to see all your fleets, what ships are in them and their location? I had 100 or so explorer fleets, 3 stinger fleets, and 1 eldritch fleet all in different locations. Logged off and forgot where the jump ships were. lol. took me awhile to check all the fleets locations to find them.

In the do's and don'ts section for new players a guideline for planet types best and worst uses would be helpful

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Re: Era 3 feedback

Post by Oddball » Sun May 21, 2017 3:19 pm

Current incarnation Looking

Jumpship yards and resource shortages
world underground resources- major trillum, major hexacarbide
TL biotech
pop 8.7 efficiency 27.2
I rushed the redesignation when another rogue empire? popped up adjacent to me.

importing csg, trillum, hexacarbide, autofacs.

shortages
trillum (extractor is producing more than exporting)
hexacarbide (foundry is producing more than it is exporting)
autofac will add second autofac when able.

I don't understand - yard triillum production reads, imported 25 consumed 28[78]
trillum extractor reads produced 777, consumed 22, exported 150. 600 trillum available for export
Hexacarbide is similar similar surplus production not being exported to yard and yard showing Imported 30, consumed 28[93]. 100 trillum available

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