Oberlus wrote:Another point to keep adv. troop pods as a separate tech:
You only need to redesign the ships once for each game. And you can have such designs saved from previous games and ordered in a fashion that appear before the regular troop ships. Only annoyance for this, IMO, is to have to "obsolete" old designs you don't want to be shown, but that I have to do many often regardless of the troop parts (in fact, I did delete most standard designs that come with the game and I never use, but I don't do it anymore since I have to repeat it after each master pull or test version download).
Maybe this bothering me because i play on a laptop without mouse. Without mouse the UI to add/remove/obsolete design sucks a bit.
Adding is the easiest because the designs only become available if you already have the tech.
In my opinion the obsolete techs clutters things up a lot. It doesnt show so much with troop and colony pods, because you can upgrade them only once and usually you dont have many designs based on them (two to four colonizer designs, two to six invasion designs). So an example from when fuel techs were still separate: Lets say you have one colony design you keep using - a protoplasmic hull with one fuel, armor, stealth tech and a colony pod.
So lets say you research 2 fuel techs, 1 colony tech, 2 stealth techs and 2 armor techs. This lead to 3*2*3*3==54 meaningful protoplasmic colonizer designs
you have to manage. Ok, I exaggerated, thats the total number of combinations, so thats rather the reason why you have to manually design these while playing and cant really predesign them. But still each tech leads to a redesign of hulls with that part. So in normal games, with one protoplasmic colonizer, the in-system colonizer and a basic colonizer this would mean (2+1+2+2) + (0+1+0+0) + (0+1+0+2) design upgrades, so 14 different designs need to be managed for colonization. For troops its more (i guess about double).
So I dont think the argument that other things are more micromanagy and everybody got used to this annoiance holds.
The argument that you could change it easier if it stays two parts is the most valid I think. If the balance stays like it is, I think we could overcome the technical problems that were mentioned in an acceptable way. If we have only one tech, the rule geoff mentioned (no negative effects by researching an advanced tech) constrains the balancing. For troop pods we might be interested to introduce different kind of troops and maybe some people also like to balance-ship-hull-vs-part-cost "mini-game". For colony pods at least i believe we would never breakt that rule follow as there is only one part in every design.
If at the moment (in the coming six months) it is not planned to balance troops pods in different way, one could say that its ok to remove the part now and add it again to the game when we need the balancing(?).
But all that said: maybe its more worthwhile to improve the UI than fixing the parts, because it helps also with the cases where you cant fix the parts without removing something interesting from the game.
So for a start what I would like to suggest is a "obsolete tech" category. E.g. you could right click the mass driver, choose "Obsolete tech and all designs with Mass Driver". All designs having mass driver parts become obsolete and also the part in would not be shown in the design view in "Available", but in "Obsolete" tech. If we can easily obsolete techs, we can also predesign more designs without cluttering the design view and production view.
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