I want to talk about the direction of gameplay. I don't feel it is good.

General discussion about anything related to Transcendence.
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@ wnmnkh: Freyr's mount is internal and should not take damage. The ship with external swivel mounts is the Raijin in Eternity Port, with APD weapons.

Sapphire is the baseline ship. The human of Transcendence ships. Its biggest strength is all-purpose slots, without eating the Manticore shield penalty. It also starts with more money, although not enough to match the equipment other ships get. Another strength it has is it is a small sprite. (It can be bad if you want to tank hits for escorts, though.) Every other playable ship aside from Wolfen is bigger. Sapphire is a slower Wolfen with a more flexible slot system and more cargo space. Its inability to equip heavy armor is not as bad as a weakness as it looks. If it could equip super-heavy armor, its agility would suffer.

EI500's biggest strength is slots, and its biggest weakness is the two weapon limit.

Wolfen is fast, to the point that some think it is overpowered and should be nerfed or removed as a starter and placed as a later-game upgrade. For me, it is the only starter that can get by without any engine upgrade - other ships are too slow. It can equip heavier armor than Sapphire, but doing so makes it sluggish, and it hurts, killing the point of using Wolfen. Wolfen effectively has an armor limit of medium. Light armor is even better so it can haul more before it gets weighed down by junk. For what it is worth, when I play in Eternity Port, where Wolfen is not a starter ship, I try to change (from Raijin or Spartan) to Wolfen as soon as possible. It base speed is almost unfair, and that is all the strength it needs, at least for early game. (By midgame or later, I want either Minotaur or Evern.)

Freyr is a disappointment. The only reason to use it is if I want to start in Tau Ceti with the ship that is not slow. The swivel the Freyr has would be good if there was a Rasiermesser weapon on par with Lamplighter or at least a big thermo weapon with high WMD. (Thorin has bad WMD.) As it is, it is simply an inferior (and bigger) Wolfen with more cargo space.

Constellation itself is not too bad. It is more agile than EI500 and can equip three weapons. It also has nine slots total and 150 base cargo space, which is nice for auton bay or other mod bays that do not add cargo space. However, auton bay is a gimmick because there are no high-level autons that can use most of the high-level weapons they need late in the game.

Not fond of Manticore because I feel locked into the Novaya and repairer combo. If I use shields, it eats a penalty. Yuck! Also, its weapons are off-center too much. However, it has eight all-purpose slots like Sapphire and can haul up to 200 with a hold. If it did not have the shield penalty, I would consider using it more as an EI500 substitute (before I can buy Minotaur or Evern).

As for EP ships...
Hercules feels like an extra large Sapphire without the extra money.

Raijin is the Wolfen substitute when Wolfen was not available. External mounts do the ship more harm than good, since shields are not a reliable defense. I do not want APD weapons on APD ships because they become external (aside from the omni kinetic) and will break.

Spartan is a low-budget Centurion. No frills, the starter gunship to use if player wants to use APD weapons without them breaking.
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@ PM : Thank you for pointing that out regarding Freyr. I was confused.

The armor penalty of Sapphire is quite severe though. Really as current balance you either going to make it tank with heaviest armor possible or equip light armor and do hit & run. A lot of extremely good armors are either super-heavy or massive (though you can definitely do Dvalin quest and grab those armor pieces). There are a lot of "damn" moment when I found really good massive armor pieces and I realized my ship can only take super-heavy.


Problem of Sapphire is that it can't do neither well. It can't tank well, yet it is not really fast enough. I have to remind you that Sapphire is actually slower than Manticore, and that alone really cripples the ship too much. It is small, and looks nimble yet it moves just slightly better than freighter.


Starting difference is really gimmick at best. It is basically same situation as EI500's starting omni-directional laser. Yeah it is good to have better weapon and more cash.... for first or two systems and they have no lasting effect.


However, things like speed, armor restrictions, or something that scales as game goes (e.g Novaya) are always valuable for whole game. Wolfen's speed does not become worthless at high level system, nor Manticore's Novaya (actually, in current balance it gets stronger). Or that 2 slots can make some good difference for Freighter but I have to be honest its ability to equip massive armor is the best feature of the ship.


The main problem of imbalance among starting ships is that there has been little or no balance changes on the ships themselves while there were tons of other important balance changes on weapons, shield and armor. Sapphire actually worked really well before major shield/armor rebalance, but because it has not been compensated for the shield/armor changes, it is a very weak ship in every possible angles.
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Sapphire and Wolfen have low mass. Heavier armor (or too much heavy equipment) will kill their agility if equipped (if they can). Trying to tank with Saph/Wolfen is a bad idea. Only heavier ships like heavy gunships and Minotaur can use heavy armor comfortably. Sapphire needs an engine to be fast, which it can with eight all-purpose slots. I have a hard time squeezing engine on the likes of Freyr/Spartan/Raijin, and that often means cargo hold gets dumped eventually due to four non-weapon slot limit. Wolfen is fast enough to not need an engine, and the four non-weapon limit is more tolerable on it, but still annoying.

It is true the money is not really an advantage for the Sapphire. However, eight all-purpose slots is good. The only other starters that have that are Manticore, which has a shield penalty, and Hercules, which is a bigger and slower Sapphire without the extra cash. Other ships with all all-pupose slots (Minotaur and Evern) are midgame or late-game upgrades that are stronger than every other ship.

I am more of a light armor guy. I prefer the extra top speed over more HP, and prefer to use light armor on heavy gunships and the like if I can get +.02c or more from doing that (although I often aim for light armor even on Minotaur, who only gets +.01c), but I will use heavy armor on a sufficiently heavy ship if I find it before I find good light armor. I avoid equipping massive armor regardless of ship class even if it can use it.
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@PM

I really don't think device limits is a complicated concept. You have let's say 4 weapon ports and 6 weapon slots. Well that means you can at most put 4 weapons and or 6 slots worth of weapons. General slots would just increase the potential amount of weapon slots but not the amount of weapons. The reason why I want limits is otherwise adding more device slots would homogenize ship identity. In general, Transcendence ships each can have a lot of different roles overlapping with other ships. This is stark contrast to a lot of other games. For example, I can slap on a massive engine on my Freighter and make it play almost like a fighter. The only issue is that Freighter does not have the weapon slots to make that happen. If we were to add device slots to all ships and not limit the amount of weapons, you would have a freighter with the same practical firepower and flexibility as a Wolfen since both ships can shoot the same amount of weapons at any time. Let's be honest, you can use the same weapon loadouts for most ships and it would still work. This is a problem if we want to differentiate ships. Thus if we want to add more device slots, then have to introduce limits to retain the identity of current ships. The problem with the current implementation is that it accomplishes it's goal of differentiating ships but also hurts the already limited loadouts and device preferences we see players use. We don't want to solve the problem while making another. Thus, adding these device limits while adding slots would accomplish both differentiating ships and expanding the amount of loadouts and device preferences players would want to use.
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Limits can be complicated if there are too many types of slots to remember. Type A slots, B slots, C slots, D slots, E slots... too many. Your suggestion with the flowchart-like picture appeared like that.

As for freighter, there is also acceleration and turning speed too, although that is mitigated in that ships with fast turning become slugs when they equip and/or carry too much, while the freighters or heavy warships are mildly inconvenienced (slower accel). There are no standard engines with turning speed improvements, so freighters and Minotaur will always turn a bit sluggish.

Loadouts are mostly the same now because I do not have enough slots to get anything beyond the necessities. Non-weapon slots are reactor, shield, cargo hold, jumpdrive, and engine. For the slow gunships that only have four-non weapons, that means I do not use them, or if I am forced to, cargo hold gets dumped until I upgrade to a better ship. (I dump Raijin or Spartan for Wolfen ASAP in Eternity Port.) For ships with two non-weapons, that means omni weapon and launcher (or WMD weapon).

I consider lack of slots and over-dominance of WMD weapons worse problem than ship differentiation.
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wnmnkh wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 2:46 am
1) Sapphire: All devices installed on this ship is 40% more efficient. Increase base speed from .20c to .23c

2) Wolfen: Increase speed from 0.25c to 0.27c, and any dual-firing weapons installed on Wolfen is 50% more efficient and does 20% more damage.

3) EI500: Any installed single-point weapon gains omnidirectional. Increase cargo bay to 100 tons from 50 tons.
I'm strongly disagree these three original starter ships (SOTP) having too much modifier to player, unlike CC playerships which are additional content. it would kill their "basic starter" nature and making it more complex specialized ship. Instead of interesting choice of playstyles, players were mildly forced to equips the same configuration of all time if they wanted more power, omnidirectional weapons would generaly become pointless if strong weapon such as Ares Plasma could configured to be omnidirectional, and the game become ways too easy (If players ignore permadeath and other challenges). If that happens, I would see myself making mods for original Sapphire setup in future.
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@PM

First, 4 types of straightforward slots is not a lot to remember. Furthermore, it's entirely based on concepts already established in the game. Weapons -> Weapon Slots. Shield -> Protection Slot. Other Equipment -> Auxiliary Slot. Reactor -> Reactor Slot. I would hardly say you have to change your way of thinking to treat it as more complicated. In fact, there are multitudes of examples where this type of slot diversity is just natural in the genre.

"As for freighter, there is also acceleration and turning speed too, although that is mitigated in that ships with fast turning become slugs when they equip and/or carry too much, while the freighters or heavy warships are mildly inconvenienced (slower accel). There are no standard engines with turning speed improvements, so freighters and Minotaur will always turn a bit sluggish."

Yes, you're absolutely right. However, that is exactly my point. Most ships can generally play like other ships as long as you slap a propulsion drive and equip a similar loadout. In fact, a weighted Wolfen (often the case late-game) would move almost like a non-weighted Freighter with a propulsion drive. Due to these device slot differences, it's almost guaranteed that the Freighter moves 80% as well as a Wolfen because the Wolfen cannot afford to have a propulsion drive.

"Loadouts are mostly the same now because I do not have enough slots to get anything beyond the necessities. Non-weapon slots are reactor, shield, cargo hold, jumpdrive, and engine. For the slow gunships that only have four-non weapons, that means I do not use them, or if I am forced to, cargo hold gets dumped until I upgrade to a better ship. (I dump Raijin or Spartan for Wolfen ASAP in Eternity Port.) For ships with two non-weapons, that means omni weapon and launcher (or WMD weapon)."

I think we all agree and made this point. However, adding more device slots without limits only further muddles the differences between ships. In fact, you can argue 90% of player comparable NPC ships can be played similar to each other with little differences except for cargo space (think Ronin, Britannia, Heavy IAV, etc). Which begs the question, how would increasing the amount of slots make these ships anymore different than each other? Transcendence Part 1 has a large variety of ships and it's only going to increase. There are probably 5-20 ships per combination of non-device slots and weapons slots and that number is going to increase. There is only so much you can tweak, before a whole category of ships looks the same. Diversifying slots and adding limits solves this problem. Your argument against it is that it is too complicated but as I mentioned, these are concepts you and most players familiar with the genre would already know about.

"I consider lack of slots and over-dominance of WMD weapons worse problem than ship differentiation."
I agree both issues are priority issues. No doubt about it. I haven't made on comments on which is more important. I have given my 2 cents on WMD and how making shields and other attributes more meaningful. I would appreciate your opinion and what you think of my suggestions. However, I don't see how simply adding more slots would lessen the problem of ship differentiation but instead, only to hurt it.

@DigaRW
"I'm strongly disagree these three original starter ships (SOTP) having too much modifier to player, unlike CC playerships which are additional content. it would kill their "basic starter" nature and making it more complex specialized ship. Instead of interesting choice of playstyles, players were mildly forced to equips the same configuration of all time if they wanted more power, omnidirectional weapons would generaly become pointless if strong weapon such as Ares Plasma could configured to be omnidirectional, and the game become ways too easy (If players ignore permadeath and other challenges). If that happens, I would see myself making mods for original Sapphire setup in future."

I agree with your view that it would minimize choice and playstyle for players. I'm curious. What if player ships had internal hull and you can upgrade them at higher tech dockyards? Would this be something you would like to see in the base starter ships, if assuming it was applied to NPCs as well?
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Which begs the question, how would increasing the amount of slots make these ships anymore different than each other? Transcendence Part 1 has a large variety of ships and it's only going to increase.
I might have a slot to spare for luxuries, like a non-omni/non-WMD energy weapon (like dual particle beam cannon) or a mining weapon, or put a solar array or a weapon enhancer on my ship. Having less slots will not make the ships play differently, they will all have the same devices because they need them to function. That is why something like EI500 or Evern is nice, because I have an extra slot to equip a luxury item. For something like Sapphire or Wolfen, I never use less useful items due to lack of slots (or keeping weight under control by removing unnecessary weapons in case of lighter gunships.) Maybe that does not make them different enough to play, but it makes it more fun to play because I can equip some fun but weaker stuff from time to time instead of being locked into the same spartan loadout every game because slot limits are too low.

I do not expect major ship differentiation for part 1 ships. Most of them were made long before ship changing was allowed in 1.8. I highly doubt much time will be spent making them distinct when there is other stuff to be done, especially George finishing up part 2 (after more than a ten year or so wait).

It is fine if some of the ships are nothing more than different clothes for the same basic traditional ship. Also some of those ships (like the smaller IAVs) are clearly weaker than starters, and if a player really wants to change into such a ship, the only things that matter for those is if it is functional and it does not clog hull spawns at the ship broker.

Some ship differentiation will need to come through ship special abilities that cannot be easily copied by devices. Sometimes, those less remarkable ships that will not be used for very long, all they need is signature default equipment loadout, especially if the equipment is unusual and hard to acquire for a while. If a starter ship has a unique gimmick that becomes accessible to all through luck or significant cost later (like Constellation's auton bay), that is fine. By then, player will probably want to upgrade to the one or two overpowered hulls by midgame.

What I would like to see is more overpowered ships that can compete with Minotaur, rather than Minotaur being lonely at the top.

For part 2, ships will be like weapons, from weak to strong, because reactors cannot be swapped there. (No way player will take a Erebien patrol ship and fill it with B-Nine overtech because its 4 GW or so reactor cannot support all of it.)

About WMD...
The targets that need WMD to hurt are most stations and capital ships. Stations have no shields. Capital ships may or may not have them, but it does not matter. Also, the problem with WMD requirement for stations and ships are different. Stations use armor resistances, but ships do not once they use hull for defense. Against ships, level appropriate weapons with low tier damage (e.g., level 6+ laser weapon) will struggle a bit more against armor but will then carve up hull quickly. (Of course, a level 6+ kinetic with high WMD will smash that ship.) Stations do not use hull and armor will block under-tiered damage weapons.

I do not know what can be done about it except get rid of WMD or raise no WMD damage from 10% to 25%. Maybe ion damage can work like mechanist's nano corroder, which bypasses WMD requirement despite no WMD on the weapon. (Damage is done over time through an overlay). Maybe have ion attacks inflict a shocking status that electrocutes the target for damage over time. Hmmm... I might experiment with that for my weapons. Have no idea for existing low-level lasers or particle beams. All kinetics should have some WMD. Low-level kinetics with no WMD are even worse than lasers (because they are slower and of kinetic resistant pirates that plague missions in New Beyond).
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DigaRW wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:48 pm


I'm strongly disagree these three original starter ships (SOTP) having too much modifier to player, unlike CC playerships which are additional content. it would kill their "basic starter" nature and making it more complex specialized ship. Instead of interesting choice of playstyles, players were mildly forced to equips the same configuration of all time if they wanted more power, omnidirectional weapons would generaly become pointless if strong weapon such as Ares Plasma could configured to be omnidirectional, and the game become ways too easy (If players ignore permadeath and other challenges). If that happens, I would see myself making mods for original Sapphire setup in future.

I mean, we are already being forced to equip the same configuration at the current state unfortunately. In the end it will be howitzers and some fast-hitting weapon. With pretty much all ships have only 8 slots realistically you can really only use 2 weapons at max effiency (the reason I don't feel any restriction on EI500's weapon slot 'limitation'.)

"basic starter" nature does not mean they have to be blend and play same. After all in games like Diablo you have to choose characters from start and (most of the time) they are being played very differently. Of course they are being forced to play that way but after all it was the player's choice to play that way.

But unlike Diablo, if you do not like the playstyle of the ship you have chosen, you can change to a new ship.


Finally, omnidirectional weapons are really weak now. If you still think omni is too powerful (and Ares Plasma is really bad weapon from the start...) you really should start play this game with a mouse. I played this game since 0.5c-ish and I long played this game with keyboard for a very long time until recently I thought "well, let's try play with a new way!". So I stopped being lazy, did some keyboard-mouse configuration and it was so much easy to hit things.

I see the stat of the omnidirectional weapons and they are no longer on the era when IM09 had crazy range and actually fired 9 ion bolts. With exception of omni version of thermo cannon I found the 'restrictions' and 'nerfs' on omni version of weapons are not really worth to use for many cases.
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Not really. My playstyle were not rely on weapon damage, but more on reliable and flexible weapon. In the end game, I prefer on single mount weapon such as Ion blasters or Lamplighter. I also prefer launcher over howitzer. Sometimes I used other weapon, but just for some test or challenge. Two slots weapon is already enough for me. I don't know if others uses more than weapon slots.

I'm still feeling that omnidirectional weapons is extremely powerful even compared with tracking weapons. Omnidirectional is basically trade power for capabilities. Of course, omni weapon mostly have low damage and powerful one such as X-ray and TeV 9 is irrelevant to their current level. However, they can outmatched most of light and medium size gunship since it's almost never miss. The ship will destroyed not only with how much damage they received, but with how much they got hit by weapon.

EI500 might very boring ship. But when upgraded to certain level, it's ridiculously overpowered. Having omnidirectional capability to all weapon would make it even outclassed Phobos. EI500 without speed enhancer still able dodge deadly Plasma Archcannon while it can bombard them with heavy weapon. I'm also more prefer on single mount weapon. Having capabilities that impossible to get rid off is really hurt me. Yes, I could change my ship. But sometimes I wanted to play something with no modifier for some purpose. Meanwhile, I actually don't like much with any enhancer. In fact most of my runs are relied on original damage of all weapon or original strength of any device. That's why I disagree having much modifier to these basic starter ships.
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Alternatively, if you want some modifier on the ship, I could suggest the game should have shipyard being able to enhance ship's hull.
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DigaRW wrote:
Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:40 am
Not really. My playstyle were not rely on weapon damage, but more on reliable and flexible weapon. In the end game, I prefer on single mount weapon such as Ion blasters or Lamplighter. I also prefer launcher over howitzer. Sometimes I used other weapon, but just for some test or challenge. Two slots weapon is already enough for me. I don't know if others uses more than weapon slots.

I'm still feeling that omnidirectional weapons is extremely powerful even compared with tracking weapons. Omnidirectional is basically trade power for capabilities. Of course, omni weapon mostly have low damage and powerful one such as X-ray and TeV 9 is irrelevant to their current level. However, they can outmatched most of light and medium size gunship since it's almost never miss. The ship will destroyed not only with how much damage they received, but with how much they got hit by weapon.

EI500 might very boring ship. But when upgraded to certain level, it's ridiculously overpowered. Having omnidirectional capability to all weapon would make it even outclassed Phobos. EI500 without speed enhancer still able dodge deadly Plasma Archcannon while it can bombard them with heavy weapon. I'm also more prefer on single mount weapon. Having capabilities that impossible to get rid off is really hurt me. Yes, I could change my ship. But sometimes I wanted to play something with no modifier for some purpose. Meanwhile, I actually don't like much with any enhancer. In fact most of my runs are relied on original damage of all weapon or original strength of any device. That's why I disagree having much modifier to these basic starter ships.
DigaRW wrote:
Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:43 am
Alternatively, if you want some modifier on the ship, I could suggest the game should have shipyard being able to enhance ship's hull.
Yes, I really should not say just howitzer. What I want to say is that it will be always two weapons that functions basically same. One with slow but high WMD (launchers or howitzer) and one with cleaning screen (like ion blasters). Of course missiles CAN clean mobs but such playstyle relies too much on ammo that is very hard to pull it off. What I want to say is that in the end the overall setup is going to be same no matter what due to WMD restriction.

Any ship upgraded to certian level it gets overpowered.... as the game intended so you can push through the higher level systems. With Wolfen equipped with dual fusionfire everything pretty much evaporates very quickly, and tbh as I am playing with just howitzer reloader + dual fusionfire + Katana it pretty much cleans house.

I am playing all ships now and the power difference of Wolfen, Freyr and Manticore versus EI500 is just massive. Believe it or not EI500 is not even semi-decent anymore because it is no longer true 200 ton ship (it only has 50 tons now as soon as you get rid of trader cargo equipment.) And a lot of 'massive' armors are heavily nerfed (on top of speed nerf) too.
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wnmnkh wrote:
Sat Jul 11, 2020 8:36 am

Yes, I really should not say just howitzer. What I want to say is that it will be always two weapons that functions basically same. One with slow but high WMD (launchers or howitzer) and one with cleaning screen (like ion blasters). Of course missiles CAN clean mobs but such playstyle relies too much on ammo that is very hard to pull it off. What I want to say is that in the end the overall setup is going to be same no matter what due to WMD restriction.
You're right. WMD has been replacement for non-critical armor and played role nicely on capital ships and stations. But as a result, many are reconsidered non WMD weapon as it's useless on capital ship, while WMD weapon can damage them both. Ammo weapon and slow firing weapon were used to limit WMD capability, but it's all overcomed with weapon enhancers.
Any ship upgraded to certian level it gets overpowered.... as the game intended so you can push through the higher level systems. With Wolfen equipped with dual fusionfire everything pretty much evaporates very quickly, and tbh as I am playing with just howitzer reloader + dual fusionfire + Katana it pretty much cleans house.

I am playing all ships now and the power difference of Wolfen, Freyr and Manticore versus EI500 is just massive. Believe it or not EI500 is not even semi-decent anymore because it is no longer true 200 ton ship (it only has 50 tons now as soon as you get rid of trader cargo equipment.)

And a lot of 'massive' armors are heavily nerfed (on top of speed nerf) too.
I remember "armor weight interfere top speed" were suggested by some forum members and implemented on V1.7. Unfortunately, I forgot where since didn't participate much on it because I'm busy on modding stuff.
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I do not use weapon enhancers unless I have a spare slot. They are the first devices to get dumped when I run out of device slots. I view cargo, mobility items (engine and jumpdrive), and armor repair more important than weapon enhancers. (Armor repair gets dumped once I get Restore.)
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About WMD...

Recently discovered that Marauder strongholds take this to the next level by requiring mining damage for significant damage. WMD alone does not work against them. Given how late they appear, the only standard weapon with enough oomph to hurt them is the plasma torch. However, they are extremely vulnerable to excavation pods. The problem, without Corporate Command, the pods are mostly found in New Beyond, far from mid to late Ungoverned Territories. Plasma torch is a bit awkward as a weapon, not something I want to use as my primary weapon just to kill Marauder bases. Basically, proper mining support requires the paid expansion Corporate Command.
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