Outpost ships vs colony ships

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Kassiopeija
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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#31 Post by Kassiopeija » Sat Feb 20, 2016 9:56 am

toolforger wrote: However, colony ships as they work today start to get micro-managy pretty quickly.
Ideally, you want to have the colony ship ready to colonize any planet as soon as it comes under your control. This means knowing where the matching shipyard is, knowing how many of the colony ships being built there aren't yet assigned, knowing when they will be ready, and knowing how long they will take to arrive. It's pure logistics with lots of ahead-of-time microplanning, which you have to redo whenever something unexpected happens (such as the loss of an industry planet, or severed supply lines).
It's okay if the unexpected throws you back, but if micromanagement is to be avoided, it's not okay to have to recalculate every single frigging colony ship's eta on any build queue in the empire.
It's not that hard. Just like with Outposter, where you can produce several in advance which are following your warships during expansion in order to quickly inhabitate all planets left alone from the AI, you can do so with pure Colony Ships. Just that it is more complicated, but usually you have one species which is best suited for one (or more) type of planetary environment. Sometimes you even want to colonize planets which net lesser maxpop, if said species has specific traits that comply with your overall strategy, such as immense-researchoutput etc pp. In the end it'll boil down that you'll have to produce colony ships from 2-5 different planets, which form a fleet on their own. Everytime you then use a specific ship to colonize a planet you simply go to that planet here it's been produced and order a new.

Still, this process is far less optimal than using outposters because of *range*. An outposter can be produced everywhere, and in large games the range to get multiple-species colony ships to assembly on one point means a significant loss of time (and lost time automatically means lost production...) so the only true reason to build colony ships is if a planet lies far outside your supply lines.... which is something that usually happens only early because around midgame you should be able to get enough supply via the various techs.

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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#32 Post by toolforger » Sat Feb 20, 2016 10:30 am

Kassiopeija wrote:It's not that hard. Just like with Outposter, where you can produce several in advance which are following your warships during expansion in order to quickly inhabitate all planets left alone from the AI, you can do so with pure Colony Ships.
It's friggin' expensive to have a bunch of colony ships sitting around. The PPs sunk into these "just in case" ships could have been warships or troop transports.
And with colony ships, for each race you keep around you need a substantially larger fraction. Even with just two races this doubles the amount of PPs you keep sunk into the colony ship reserves.
Plus yes, the larger distance from home planet makes the PPs useless for a longer time because the colony ship needs more time.
And you sink more costs into building a basic shipyard plus orbital incubator. Worse, you sink substantial time; you need a CS pronto, are already taking the hit for flying distance, and THEN you find you didn't have the PPs pre-spent on the shipyard infrastructure and need to wait another 12 turns before you can even start building a CS.

Another advantage: the outpost is there earlier (five or six turns), giving you supply and mobility for your warfleet even before the colony is done. You can avoid that by having the colony ship there, but usually you don't.
Kassiopeija wrote:In the end it'll boil down that you'll have to produce colony ships from 2-5 different planets, which form a fleet on their own.
That's 2-5 times the PPs sunk. You could have a real war fleet or two for that amount of money.
Early expansion means you meet much weaker enemies; don't let them grow by building those colonist fleets!
Kassiopeija wrote:so the only true reason to build colony ships is if a planet lies far outside your supply lines.... which is something that usually happens only early because around midgame you should be able to get enough supply via the various techs.
Even in early game, operating outside your supply means you need to spread your defense fleets so thinly that they may as well not exist.
Greedy expansion might work up to the point where an opponent grew slightly slower but has a sizable warfleet, and then he'll gleefully overrun your colonies. Maybe you have enough time to build your own warfleet before he hits your core worlds, dunno...

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Kassiopeija
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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#33 Post by Kassiopeija » Sat Feb 20, 2016 11:21 am

Cpeosphoros wrote:About micromanagement of colony ships (and, to some extent outpost ships, also - even 3 turns in mid-to-late game with a high-production setup is time enough to start forgetting things), there was a suggestion in another thread - I can't find it now, less so remember who suggested it - that we could issue orders to ships while they are enqueued.
I think that was me. What we need is a system of Waypoints just like in GC series, perhaps even more detailed with some logical options thrown into it.

Right-clicking new planet --> select option "order ship/fleet to this location"/ "build ship for this location" --> select fleet/planet --> specify design or additional options.

The planet then gets to display an icon so you know something is destined for it. Upon clicking the icon all details are displayed with the ability to alter or cancel any orders.

Likewise, the same icon could be shown on the production cue or production planet. As well as you could just click on any ship on the mainmap or queue and specify a Waypoint for it.

Perhaps there could be a new toggle screen or an overview list of all Waypoints, giving the ability to further manipulate the different Waypoints, or interconnect them, eg.
- all ships reaching WaypointA are send to WaypointB. This would result in a quasi-patrol ability, also would be handy to just set new waypoints and point the previous one towards it, so no care about old ships' destination points has to be taken.
- re-route all ships that currently go to WaypointA to WaypointB
- delete WaypointA --> stops all ships going to WaypointA

Attribute a common Waypoint to a specific shipyard --> ie. all ships released by this yard are automatically send to fly to that Waypoint. (manual override of single items possible)

Waypoints could have logical options of what to do when certain criteria are met, integrated, ie.
- when Colony Ship/Outposter arrives, prompt for colonization (if suitable planets are present) or outposting
- prompt for another Waypoint/destination
- do nothing
- automatically form fleet, either all ships or several logically sorted

***

Basically the intent is create a system where you don't have to double-check on ships, esp. if a planet already has a colony/outposter en route or if it's still in production, and/or, once a producted ships is finished, having to remember for what place it was initially ment for. In a large map with +200 systems that becomes so repetetive and also timeconsuming, and over time, as concentration goes down, lots of errors appear.

What simply needs to happen is that, if I find a new planet or place etc that I can issue commands of what is going to happen with this place right away & in advance, and that from that on the game simply executes these commands without me having to re-check every turn on the progression.

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MatGB
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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#34 Post by MatGB » Sat Feb 20, 2016 11:51 am

New feature, added last few weeks I don't know when or who by, "Rally To:"

Queue a ship (any ship), then select a target system while in ProdWnd, right click on the queued ship(s) and select 'rally to {systemname}', when completed those ships will automatically start going to the target system. You still get the sitrep telling you they've completed so you can change their move orders as normal if you want.

I've only recently noticed it was there and haven't tested it fully, I've no idea if it is retained between saves, etc. Feedback on it would be good for whoever did it as it is a nifty feature.
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Geoff the Medio
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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#35 Post by Geoff the Medio » Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:27 pm

MatGB wrote:...I've no idea if it is retained between saves, etc.
It's stored as part of the queue item, so should be retained between saves.

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Kassiopeija
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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#36 Post by Kassiopeija » Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:29 pm

toolforger wrote: It's friggin' expensive to have a bunch of colony ships sitting around. The PPs sunk into these "just in case" ships could have been warships or troop transports.
do you compare the cost of Colony Ship against that of an Outposter? Then, yes, outposters are more cheap, but what you're really have to look at is the cost of a Colony Ship versus an Outposter + Colony building. AFAIK the Colony Ship is cheaper, esp. early on when distances aren't that much stretched, and certain key techs still have to be unlocked.

Besides, I don't colonize when I could instead take worlds from the AI - which is more effective in terms of investment return in winning a map. But I don't see much point in raising more military when my military is already winning more or less lossless.

However, I usually play a game focused on prroduction, and there's usually so much production available I don't even know what to do with it. For example, I terraform/gaia every planet and turn all GG into planets just that my global production can sink into something that won't create more lag (ships are the worst offender in that regard)
toolforger wrote: And with colony ships, for each race you keep around you need a substantially larger fraction. Even with just two races this doubles the amount of PPs you keep sunk into the colony ship reserves.
You only need the amount of investigated planets that are planned to be colonized + 1 additional ship per race as reserve. You may even scrap that reserve and only order a ship once a planet has been found, it may delay your colonization approach but sometimes, and esp. early on, you just can't muster enough PP to make ships in advance, and that qualifies equally for Outposters, as well.

It's not really that much more, although sometimes, of you get unlucky & encounter an unusual system where only the same planettypes are present, you may run out of optimal ships.

But seriously, I'm not trying to promote this approach here, because the Outposter approach is far better (and is a no-brainer, and such things are always bad for any strategy game) but because of other reasons (which are all mentioned ion the previous page)
toolforger wrote: Plus yes, the larger distance from home planet makes the PPs useless for a longer time because the colony ship needs more time.
It really depends on how you do it ingame.

If you build shipyards on any system and then simply order your ships from the nearest one, it may save you time but it'll come at extra costs of errecting these shipyards in the first place and also the delay before they got established.
Personally, I just have one planet that is building outposter ships, usually using some organic hull, thus my distance between source & target can get very large also. I help it with lighthouses, so usually these ships fly with speed 120-140 and that seems better to me than just building 2 or 3 shipyards everywhere.

In direct comparison if I use Colony Ships instead I just have 2-5 of these source planets, and those may even be more close to my targets. Needs a few more lighthouses though, which also really doesn't matter since I build them consistently anywhere, anyway.


toolforger wrote: And you sink more costs into building a basic shipyard plus orbital incubator.
The additional shipyards required for this are usually already established by the AI.
toolforger wrote: Worse, you sink substantial time; you need a CS pronto, are already taking the hit for flying distance, and THEN you find you didn't have the PPs pre-spent on the shipyard infrastructure and need to wait another 12 turns before you can even start building a CS.
I don't encounter these kinds of problems, partly because I do things differently (see above)
toolforger wrote:You could have a real war fleet or two for that amount of money.
Early expansion means you meet much weaker enemies; don't let them grow by building those colonist fleets!
doesn't really matter much since the AI in this game is of no threat whatsoever. fine if he colonises, taking these colonies away from him is actually more cheap then colonizing on my own!
it needs bonuses to production in the range of +50% and research +30% to be able to be somehow close to be competetive.
toolforger wrote: Even in early game, operating outside your supply means you need to spread your defense fleets so thinly that they may as well not exist.

Greedy expansion might work up to the point where an opponent grew slightly slower but has a sizable warfleet, and then he'll gleefully overrun your colonies. Maybe you have enough time to build your own warfleet before he hits your core worlds, dunno...
if you play somewhat smallish game perhaps, but in these cases it's actually better to simply rushstorm the AI. but I'm playing +500 systems vs 10 AI, there's no AI around for +150 turns.
Ironically I don't even build early military except +20 att robocruisers in order to lossless kill Sentries. I focus on colonization in order to bring production up.
Then, once I meet the AI, I shift to produce military, sometimes even loosing some planets while waiting for them, but doesnt really matter since what I'm producing I so uberstrong that I can defeat any AI practically lossless, simply overruning them in all directions.

Seriously, judging from the graphs, around turn 200 I have more RP & PP output than all 10 AIs combined, except for the very first FO game I played I never got hit on my core worlds.

If you just optimize your research path the game becomes very easy even if you play 30 voids first turns to give the AI a headstart...

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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#37 Post by Kassiopeija » Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:30 pm

MatGB wrote:New feature, added last few weeks I don't know when or who by, "Rally To:"

Queue a ship (any ship), then select a target system while in ProdWnd, right click on the queued ship(s) and select 'rally to {systemname}', when completed those ships will automatically start going to the target system. You still get the sitrep telling you they've completed so you can change their move orders as normal if you want.

I've only recently noticed it was there and haven't tested it fully, I've no idea if it is retained between saves, etc. Feedback on it would be good for whoever did it as it is a nifty feature.
cool :) time to dl newest version it seems^^

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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#38 Post by toolforger » Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:39 pm

Kassiopeija wrote:
toolforger wrote: It's friggin' expensive to have a bunch of colony ships sitting around. The PPs sunk into these "just in case" ships could have been warships or troop transports.
do you compare the cost of Colony Ship against that of an Outposter? Then, yes, outposters are more cheap, but what you're really have to look at is the cost of a Colony Ship versus an Outposter + Colony building.
It allows you to postpone the expense until the colony is actually built.
This includes travel time from build site to fleet, and the time the fleet is sitting around, doing nothing except wait for an opportunity to build.
Postponing expenses is good, you can invest the PPs into something else that has a faster return on investment, such as a war fleet, troop transports, terraforming, or industry upgrades. When these pay off, expending PPs for the colony will take a smaller proportion of your overall income.

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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#39 Post by toolforger » Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:47 pm

Heh. I tend to play smaller games, around 250 systems, because with terraforming, artificial-planetting and colonising everything the build queue gets bogged down. I have had games with 300 systems where every action that would change the build queue took 20-30 seconds; this regularly happens near endgame, when everything is done.
Of course doing that near endgame is "just hobby", you don't need that to win. Unless the Experimentors really got out of hand in some faraway corner that you simply didn't get to in time, and they have fleets of 100k+ sitting around and blocking the best choke point, or the one black hole you wanted to use, or whatever strategic thing you wanted.

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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#40 Post by MatGB » Sat Feb 20, 2016 1:03 pm

Cost of Outpost module: 50 Cost of colony building: 50
Cost of Colony Pod: 120

All have Colony Upkeep applied, which is a multiplier so the difference gets bigger over time. Outpost+ building is, deliberately cheaper than colony pod (outposts were reduced in cost when the new system was introduced as well).

In addition, if you complete Lifecycle Manipulation on or before the turn the building is completed you get the population bonus immediately instead of in 10+ turns time.

Buildings are far more efficient than colony pods in so many ways.
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Re: Outpost ships vs colony ships

#41 Post by Kassiopeija » Tue Feb 23, 2016 1:34 am

thanks Mat for correcting me. I was still using old values from an earlier build. now I've go the latest and having a blast so far :) cool new stuff, good what you did to organics :) game is definitely more challenging, esp. the AI seems to have lesser probs with Monsters
WELL DONE!

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