Please forgive any spelling errors it's latenight + I'm somewhat boozed^^
First off, I hail the current Carriers & Fighters approach, in fact I hail all new stuff added, but for the time being it always seems to be so less in comparison of how many words are actually spent on talking out the stuff ^^(the tradeoff about this is certainly that it's well balanced right on implementation...)
Nevertheless, I'd like to see more. (!)
One of the major downside of FO is that weapons and shields just do the same. You only increase their strength. That can posse the danger of becoming boring quite quickly. Other games present different types of weapons with different types of defenses and even at that player feel that this rock, scissor paper design isn't really intuitive but it would be a good start.
Not saying now to incorporate new stats but in one way or another weapons could use some uniqueness via some quirks etc
(I just write my mind w/o any considerations to overall balancing)
- different weapons could see a different efficiency against the different shields, esp. with the mindset to not completely obsolete older weapons. for example, massdriver based weapons could do only half damage, but do 2 shots per round, and do a min. of +1 damage per shot regardless of shield-strength
(just hold on a second and think about this: the possibility of weapons having a partial shield-penetrating ability opens up a whole new level of possibilites - the piercing ability could even vary from shield to shield-system - eg. blackshields could be completely useless against massdrivers etc.. and that alone could make combat much more unpredictable than its currently is....)
- i'd like to see weapons having an accuracy-rating - with laser being the most accurate. Speed, I mean real engine speed, should degrade accuracy by some percentage, while big ships should be far more to easy to be hit than smaller vessels (this could be based on the number of available slots - or even only used slots - as all parts naturally bring in more mass/weight). different weapons may bring in different accuracy, this hitrating could be used to balance the strength of a weaponbranch as well. At that point I'd also lie to see a complete revamp of the target priorities: It should be based on accuracy: You aim at what you think you can hit successfully. If accuracy is at 100% in multiple instances weapons aim at targets based on a secondairy routine, this could be:
- whatever target is fasted destroyed
- whatever target possess the most (offensive) danger to the outcome of battle (decimation of enemy firepower)
- whatever target is least efficient against your type of weapon (inflict max damage fomulae)
or, better, give a player the option to specify these logical routines manually but/and globally.
- Plasma should gain the ability to collapse an enemy shield (if it hits) as a proc, perhaps somewhere around 5%. For the remaining combat the victim of such a hit looses all shieldstrength and, if survives, replenishes its shields just like being degraded from IonStorm.
- likewise DeathRay has the capability to achieve a critical 200% damage on proc
- We need Torpedos. Seriously. Slow but hardhitting stuff. Give them a 1-turn delay from being fired until reaching a target. Target without shields suffer 150% or 200% damage. Shielded targets suffer (randombased) either 100%, 75% or 25% (splash) damage. Another form of dispersiv torpedoes would be to incite only splash 25% damage by default but do that to the whole enemy fleet instead.
- Again. Different weapons need to be differently effective against different types of shields. It doesnt really matter how you come by to this, being it armour-penetration, damage-boosts, accuracy boosts, or (the other way round) the inability to do damage at all, (or only reduced damage... let's say Death Ray does only generally half damage versus Deflector Shield etc) the OVERALL POINT of doing this is to INTRODUCE A NEW COMPLEXITY that appears to be somewhat INCALCULATEABLY beforeahead and that just allows too many different combinations to simply keep them in mind for all stages of the game.
Thing is, currently, you can easily deduce from just looking at fleetstats, if you win a coming combat (or not), and even if you win lossless, or if losses can be expected etc and this is boring and doesn't really add to the challenge of the game. There needs to be more randomness... and also, a diversifying of modules.... let's say I build a cookie-cutter "best of" type of ship against AI 1 (who uses Laser RoboCruiser) then this design shouldn't work against AI 2 who uses Mass Driver Comets or AI 3 who uses stealth Organics....
and because you can't really control your placement on the map and the way how your enemies decide to handle their shipdesign there should, at least sometimes, being real dangers emerging just from being at the wrong spot caught between hostiles where you have to build completely different designs to be successfull.
Planetary shields function somewhat completely different than shipbased ones. I'd consider renaming them to make it easier for new player. Perhaps Barriers?
For what's not in 'Top Priority Game Design'. Post your ideas, visions, suggestions for the game, rules, modifications, etc.
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