Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

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Vezzra
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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#46 Post by Vezzra »

eleazar wrote:I'd been under the impression that the make-it-cost-more-for-each-one-the-empire-owns approach is a stop-gap, until it was possible to implement more suitable growth-retardants.
Well, in that case I can live with it. I'm still not overly enthusiastic about it (even if it's only temporary), because it messes up balance really bad IMO, and would prefer if we'd just reduce the production boosts and raise the costs. But that's probably just me. ;)

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#47 Post by yandonman »

But that's probably just me
nope
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Dilvish
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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#48 Post by Dilvish »

Vezzra wrote: IMO this cost increase for colony pods (even if set as high as 10%) doesn't make colonizing everywhere non-optimal (it takes way longer for the investment to pay off, but it still will pay off!), it just makes it tedious and un-fun. And discouraging the player to choose an option that would otherwise be an optimal one by making it un-fun to play is not a good idea.
I'm not a fan of the current colony costs, but I am finding myself compelled to caution against over-reliance on the optimal-but-unfun argument. Colonizing nearly everywhere may pay off eventually, in a simplisitc sense, not taking into account discount values or opportunity costs, but that is a far cry from making it optimal, which I will assert it very simply is not. The increased colonization costs tend to make to make it more optimal to invest more in technology development and expansion via invasion, relative to the lower costs.

I think it would be pretty fair to just focus on the current colony costs as just being unfun, without worrying about any added injury from them being optimal. Maybe I'm just a little cranky today, arguing with people while pretty much agreeing with them :lol:

With the current colony costs, I won't even consider colonizing a planet that's not large or huge, even with 'Good' environment for my species, unless it has some significant additional factor in its favor. That does seem a bit unfun to me.
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Geoff the Medio
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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#49 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Dilvish wrote:With the current colony costs, I won't even consider colonizing a planet that's not large or huge, even with 'Good' environment for my species, unless it has some significant additional factor in its favor.
That sounds like it's too costly... At the least, a medium / good should be worth colonizing. Is this still the case after researching some population boosting techs, or finding one or two relevant growth specials? And is after the colony pod cost growth reduction to 4% per colony?

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Dilvish
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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#50 Post by Dilvish »

Geoff the Medio wrote:
Dilvish wrote:With the current colony costs, I won't even consider colonizing a planet that's not large or huge, even with 'Good' environment for my species, unless it has some significant additional factor in its favor.
That sounds like it's too costly... At the least, a medium / good should be worth colonizing. Is this still the case after researching some population boosting techs, or finding one or two relevant growth specials? And is after the colony pod cost growth reduction to 4% per colony?
That is after having both Subterranean and Symbiotic growth techs, and includes times I had one or 2 growth specials, but I haven't been running these games long enough to get Cyborgs or NDim structures or Gaia; for a full game I suppose I *probably* would get around to colonizing a medium Good, but I'm not sure. I've been playing for up to 60-70 turns until I've got 2-3 times the production of the highest remaining AI, to try to get a feel for things with all these changes; I'm less confident of the AI tuning just now. But it's not like I'm making decisions on the basis of "it's got to pay off by turn 70 or I won't do it". It just very often seems to be a better use of resources these days to be building warships and troops rather than colony ships and outposts.

Colonizing a planet merely to get a growth special is an expensive proposition now, which I certainly delay far longer than I used to, though it's still fun to capture one.

The 4% rate is certainly much better than the 10% one, I do much more colonizing and no longer pass up capturing low-productivity natives that I could cheaply capture.
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Geoff the Medio
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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#51 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Dilvish wrote:The 4% rate is certainly much better than the 10% one, I do much more colonizing and no longer pass up capturing low-productivity natives that I could cheaply capture.
What would seem like a more reasonable cost then? How about something like reducing outpost and colony pod costs to 80 and 120 with 5% cost growth rate?
Dilvish wrote:I'd suggest increasing the RP cost of Lifecycle Manipulation and then then allowing the suspended animation pods to be the same cost as regular colony pods, or something like only 10% more expensive.
It should also be possible, although probably not currently possible without C++ code rewrites, to just make researching the tech increase the capacity of standard colony pods, without need to design new ships.

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#52 Post by unjashfan »

How about something like reducing outpost and colony pod costs to 80 and 120 with 5% cost growth rate?
I've been testing with 90 and 150 with 4% rate. While colonizing is still rather slow, I don't find it too boring, and I will be picky with the planets I want to colonize. I usually prefer at least medium/good planets or large/adequates and ignore all the tinys (they're just not worth it).

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#53 Post by Dilvish »

unjashfan wrote:
How about something like reducing outpost and colony pod costs to 80 and 120 with 5% cost growth rate?
I've been testing with 90 and 150 with 4% rate. While colonizing is still rather slow, I don't find it too boring, and I will be picky with the planets I want to colonize. I usually prefer at least medium/good planets or large/adequates and ignore all the tinys (they're just not worth it).
That testing of 90/150 was probably with the archive production rate twice it is now, right? I'll go ahead and try some testing at 80/120/5% ; if I have time perhaps also some at 60/90/5%
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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#54 Post by unjashfan »

That testing of 90/150 was probably with the archive production rate twice it is now, right?
Yep. With the new archives, we probably could drop the costs down a little more.

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#55 Post by Vezzra »

Dilvish wrote:I'm not a fan of the current colony costs, but I am finding myself compelled to caution against over-reliance on the optimal-but-unfun argument. Colonizing nearly everywhere may pay off eventually, in a simplisitc sense, not taking into account discount values or opportunity costs, but that is a far cry from making it optimal, which I will assert it very simply is not. The increased colonization costs tend to make to make it more optimal to invest more in technology development and expansion via invasion, relative to the lower costs.
Yes and no... that depends on the actual situation and what you mean by "optimal". How quickly "expansion via invasion" pays off in comparison to "expansion via colonization" depends on:
  • How much of a fight the victims of your imperialistic ambitions are able to put up ;)
  • The amount and quality of colonizeable planets in reasonable range of your starting world
By "optimal" I don't necessarily mean "ideal" or "perfect", just "better". That said, even "viable" would suffice, I wouldn't want to be discouraged from choosing a viable option just because it's less fun to play. And as long as you don't raise the colonization costs to unreasonable levels "expansion by colonization" will remain at least a viable option in enough cases, not least because the other empires are faced with exactly the same situation. After all, waging war is always a risky and unpredictable operation, whereas colonizing is not.
Maybe I'm just a little cranky today, arguing with people while pretty much agreeing with them :lol:
Don't worry, arguing over the mechanics is part of the fun creating FO after all ;)
With the current colony costs, I won't even consider colonizing a planet that's not large or huge, even with 'Good' environment for my species, unless it has some significant additional factor in its favor.
Wow, really?! :shock: Well, our playing styles apparently differ very much... even with the 10% cost increase for colony pods I've been colonizing far more than that. Certainly not tiny poor, but also certainly not only large/huge good planets. Especially as they are really hard to find, unless you play a species that prefers the more common EPs and with high planet density. In my current test game I ran into the neighboring empires and had all borders set up without encountering even one large or huge planet with my starting species EP. What do you do in this case? Cranking out warships and troop transports and steamrolling your neighbors without even bothering with colonization...?

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#56 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Dilvish wrote:...I have time perhaps also some at 60/90/5%
There's little chance I'd be OK with dropping it all the way down to 60 with only +3 / colony growth rate.

0.04*250 = 10
0.05*120 = 6
0.05*60 = 3 !!

I realize colony pods used to be much cheaper and adapting is difficult at first when used to something else, but we need to err on the side of slightly too expensive unless turn times mid-late game can be optimized much more. And regardless, it should not be viable to colonize every available planet with a single species.

That said, something slower than linear growth with number of colonies is possible. Exponents, including Count()^0.5 are possible (with an adjusted multiplicative factor so the initial growth rate is 10+). The cost increase can also be reduced or eliminated for outposts, or possibly be calculated separately for each species.

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#57 Post by unjashfan »

I think linear growth is fine for the time being, mainly because industry growth isn't exactly linear, so colony ships later in the game would proportionately be cheaper (it'll require a smaller % of the empire's industry). Later in the game, new colonies may have additional implied "upkeep costs" (maybe strategic costs?) in the form warfleets to secure the new territory - larger empires would need to be protected by more fighters. Of course, one could take the risk and not do that; I like the fact that players would have to decide how much resources they would want to spend on colonizing planets :) .

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#58 Post by Dilvish »

so which cost for these do we want to go into the RC? I don't yet have the AI fully automatically adjusting various planning calcs to these costs, but it's a pretty easy adjustment for me to make with a little bit of notice.
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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#59 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Dilvish wrote:...which cost for these do we want to go into the RC?
Did you test 120 / 5% or similar?

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Re: Cost Effectiveness: Ship comparisons

#60 Post by Dilvish »

Geoff the Medio wrote:Did you test 120 / 5% or similar?
I've been running outposts/colonies/upkeep at 80/120/5% during my recent testing. I think it works better than the higher costs, particularly with the current production levels (archives production much less than last week).
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