Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

For what's not in 'Top Priority Game Design'. Post your ideas, visions, suggestions for the game, rules, modifications, etc.

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LienRag
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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#16 Post by LienRag » Sat May 30, 2020 3:43 pm

Vezzra wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:22 pm

[*]Introduce shipyard extensions required for "fighter production". Ships with fighter parts could only be build at shipyards with that extension, and carriers would only by able to replenish/upgrade their fighters if supply connected to such a shipyard. That means it becomes a bit harder to supply your fleets with fighters. It's not sufficient to just be in supply, which means you can't resupply your fighters at the colony you just conquered, you need a supply connection all the way back to your shipyards. If your enemy manages to cut that supply route, they can effectively cripple your carrier force.

This I like.
As I wrote on another topic, right now fighters are no-brainers, which is something we want to avoid.

Maybe making them cost more Production Points ? Especially make Launch Bays cost much more, so having more hangars than Launch Bays would be a viable strategy ?

Also, make the hangars unlocked by different techs, not all at once ?
The "fighter and launch bay" would unlock only the Interceptor Hangar, other fighter hangars would have to be unlocked one by one ?


Vezzra wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:22 pm
After having played around with carriers/fighters in a few games, here are my suggestions for a revision:

[*]Decouple direct fire and carrier/fighter techs in the tech tree. You should be able to research carriers/fighters without having to research direct fire weapons, if you want to try a carrier/fighter only strategy.

Not sure about that, right now one can start a "carrier-only strategy" and save on research, but to improve damage one has to go up the direct fire ladder, it seems to me more balanced than your suggestion.



Vezzra wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:37 pm
Another two things that just came to my mind:

[*]Get rid of that fighters-need-a-combat-round-to-launch-before-they-can-attack thing. I don't really see the point. It just makes everything so much more complicated, particularly when it comes to assessing actual combat strength. Fighters should just attack on the same round they launched, which will make them more directly comparable to direct fire weapons (and consequently easier to balance).

A big no from me, it that matters to anyone.
Right now the first turn is the ability to blow out the carriers with canons before the fighters engage, and that's a good thing.
It also makes the difference more visible between canons and fighters.


Vezzra wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:37 pm
[*]Have an extra species trait for fighter pilots. Actually, good/bad pilots would better fit for fighter pilots anyway, and have good/bad "gunners" for boni/mali for direct fire weapons.
Everybody agrees on that I think.


MatGB wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:52 pm
On the fire on launch turn thing, a different option occurred: Combat Air Patrols

If a fleet hasn't moved that turn, a proportion of its fighters are in the air ready to defend, with more on standby: yes, this gives the defended an advantage but that's a balance concern.

I also want fighters available to planets to be able to launch.
Good ideas.


Ophiuchus wrote:
Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:03 am
Another idea: add a long range combat turn (in order to upgrade interceptors)
Instead of delaying fighters add a "fighter-only" combat turn.
* In this "turn zero" the fighters advanced and meet the oppenents fighters before the war ships meet.
So the larger fighter force will decimate the smaller one before the "real" combat starts.
This would greatly upgrade the interceptors as they are on equal terms with the other fighters.
That is a very interesting idea, but it needs more work imho, especially as it would completely change the system we have now.


Ophiuchus wrote:
Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:03 am
Another idea: have planets have by default some interceptors (in order to upgrade interceptors and flak)
* If planet defenses include fighters - people have to bring countermeasures (interceptors and flak)
** lets say half the defense value is the usual big gun
** lets say half the defense value consists of interceptors
** so instead 5-damage defense - one 3-damage defense and two 1-damage interceptors
** so instead 10-damage defense - one 5-damage defense and five 1-damage interceptor
Good idea, I think it's included in the Defense diversification topic.


Ophiuchus wrote:
Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:03 am
Another idea: differentiate the fighters to be able to take more than one hit ("~2HP")
Basically switch names of fighters vs bombers.
So 4 interceptors, 3 bombers, 2 fighters in the hangars.
Let fighters be only destroyed if at least 2 damage is taken.
This would result in a rock-paper-scissors situation:
* interceptors ("anti-bomber") cannon fodder, good against bombers, probably wont kill fighters in a single shot
* fighters ("anti-interceptor") ok against war ships; resilient against interceptors and flak
* bombers ("anti-warship") best damage ratio against war ships, can destroy bombers in a single shot
Not sure if fighters are tracked individually in combat at the moment, but this is not so important (works with and without individual tracking). If not tracked individually, just destroy on every second 1-damage hit (or simply roll a 50% dice for destroy/live after an 1-damage hit)
Interceptors would need to be upgraded in some way (e.g. 6 interceptors per hangar, or the long range turn mentioned above)
against the war ships)
Interesting, don't know if it's doable.


Ophiuchus wrote:
Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:03 am
* (very optional: we could add a "rocket" or "missile" fighter type here which only shoots in turn 1 - in turn 0 it doesnt do any damage, but you have a chance to shoot it down; in turn 1 it is automatically destroyed and does multishot damage without shield protection (e.g. basic rocket 5 shots with 2 damage; basic missile 1 shot with 10 damage) - this should probably take up at least a single external slot)

There's been a lot of discussion about these missiles, but though I understand that they'd be cool for immersion reasons, I don't really understand what tactical role they'll play ? Especially if they get automatically refilled next turn, they're just an expensive and high-damage fighter...

After my last game I thought of a tactical role that could be useful and to which missiles would be adapted : generating attrition.
Right now and except for Spinal Antimatter Canons, if a fleet has a real
numerical advantage over another and enough armor to withstand two shots, it usually wins without any (or with negligible) losses. Combine that with the late-game too powerful repair mechanisms, and there's no real way to stop an invading force except multi-planets systems with good defenses.
Yes, combination of force is a staple of military strategy, and it is a good thing that a superior force would wipe out a really inferior one with few losses - but not with zero.
So missiles could (I don't know how though) fill this role : guarantee a minimum attrition to enemy ships.
I don't know if a concept of "critical hit" can be introduced ? The chance of it would depend on the type of missile, the defender's technology, the type of ship¹, its health and armor (in that order) and a successful critical hit would destroy the ship ? A missile hitting a ship but failing to do a critical hit would just deal damage as other weapons do.

¹ That could be an interesting twist to the Self-Gravitating Hull (or maybe the whole Robotic line) to make them more prone to destruction by missiles' critical hits.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#17 Post by Ophiuchus » Sat May 30, 2020 5:48 pm

LienRag wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 3:43 pm
Vezzra wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:22 pm

[*]Introduce shipyard extensions required for "fighter production". Ships with fighter parts could only be build at shipyards with that extension, and carriers would only by able to replenish/upgrade their fighters if supply connected to such a shipyard. That means it becomes a bit harder to supply your fleets with fighters. It's not sufficient to just be in supply, which means you can't resupply your fighters at the colony you just conquered, you need a supply connection all the way back to your shipyards. If your enemy manages to cut that supply route, they can effectively cripple your carrier force.

This I like.
For all of your necromancy.

Yes, we should do that(?).
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#18 Post by ThinkSome » Sat May 30, 2020 5:52 pm

What about having fighters cost PPs? Something low, like 0.2 for interceptor, 0.3 strike, 0.5 bomber, 1 HB.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#19 Post by Ophiuchus » Sat May 30, 2020 6:00 pm

ThinkSome wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 5:52 pm
What about having fighters cost PPs? Something low, like 0.2 for interceptor, 0.3 strike, 0.5 bomber, 1 HB.
You mean some kind of upkeep -> see the upkeep discussion.

You mean you want to have it cost PP to replenish? How to decide which fighters get replenished? And what is the gameplay reason for the cost?
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#20 Post by LienRag » Sat May 30, 2020 6:13 pm

Ophiuchus wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 6:00 pm
You mean you want to have it cost PP to replenish? How to decide which fighters get replenished? And what is the gameplay reason for the cost?
The gameplay reason for the cost is easy : making fighters less of a no-brainer and making attrition a viable strategy when attacking a fleet rich in fighters.
How to decide which fighters get replenished is the real problem with the concept.
Maybe make a "replenish fighters" building (like "stockpiling", not a real building) that will consume PP only if fighters are destroyed, and will replenish the nearest ones until its PP are exhausted ?
There could even be one of these "buiding" per fighter type, with different costs.
Not that I insist of implementing this (I'm neutral about this proposition, and I quite prefer making Launch Bays expensive), just a way to do it if it is to be implemented.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#21 Post by Ophiuchus » Sat May 30, 2020 6:19 pm

LienRag wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 6:13 pm
The gameplay reason for the cost is easy : making fighters less of a no-brainer and making attrition a viable strategy when attacking a fleet rich in fighters.
If balance is really so slanted in favor of fighters vs ship weapons there are other ways to address it which do not involve micromanagement.
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#22 Post by Ophiuchus » Sun May 31, 2020 7:49 am

Ophiuchus wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 5:48 pm
LienRag wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 3:43 pm
Vezzra wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:22 pm

[*]Introduce shipyard extensions required for "fighter production". Ships with fighter parts could only be build at shipyards with that extension, and carriers would only by able to replenish/upgrade their fighters if supply connected to such a shipyard. That means it becomes a bit harder to supply your fleets with fighters. It's not sufficient to just be in supply, which means you can't resupply your fighters at the colony you just conquered, you need a supply connection all the way back to your shipyards. If your enemy manages to cut that supply route, they can effectively cripple your carrier force.

This I like.
For all of your necromancy.

Yes, we should do that(?).
So I kept thinking and this prevents a mostly distributed empire from using fighters.

As the PP-to-replenish-fighter topic popped up again. How about replenish a part of the fighters, based on the hangar capacity, military policy and connection to a fighter factory?

Something like carriers replenish a quarter of hangar-capacity per turn if supply-connected to a factory, and a fourth if the right military policy is in place. So you would get 1/2 of your hangar capacity back (per carrier) if both are given. No way/need to manage that. As effects are applied after combat you would know exactly how many fighters you have in the next combat.
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#23 Post by labgnome » Sun May 31, 2020 12:30 pm

Ophiuchus wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 7:49 am
So I kept thinking and this prevents a mostly distributed empire from using fighters.
Considering that over in this thread there is a lot of discussion about fighters being OP, maybe this isn't necessarily a bad thing.
Something like carriers replenish a quarter of hangar-capacity per turn if supply-connected to a factory, and a fourth if the right military policy is in place. So you would get 1/2 of your hangar capacity back (per carrier) if both are given. No way/need to manage that. As effects are applied after combat you would know exactly how many fighters you have in the next combat.
So a couple of things:
Firstly, do you mean that it would replenish 1/2 of hanger capacity total, or per turn? Because you are going to need a way to get back to full capacity.
Secondly how would this work with heavy bombers? They only have a hanger capacity of 1.
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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#24 Post by LienRag » Sun May 31, 2020 1:20 pm

Ophiuchus wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 7:49 am
So I kept thinking and this prevents a mostly distributed empire from using fighters.
Humph. I didn't think about that.
Though having distributed Empires being able to use fighters only in some of their supply groups would make for a more diversified gameplay I guess ?


Ophiuchus wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 7:49 am
As the PP-to-replenish-fighter topic popped up again. How about replenish a part of the fighters, based on the hangar capacity, military policy and connection to a fighter factory?

Something like carriers replenish a quarter of hangar-capacity per turn if supply-connected to a factory, and a fourth if the right military policy is in place. So you would get 1/2 of your hangar capacity back (per carrier) if both are given. No way/need to manage that. As effects are applied after combat you would know exactly how many fighters you have in the next combat.

Good idea. At least that means that distributed Empires would get a quarter of their fighters after each turn if they use the right military policy.

How do you round fractions, though ? Can the game keep track of "fractioned" fighters so they don't show up in the UI but are still there until they add up to a "full" fighter ? Because if it doesn't, rounding up means low number of losses get refilled entirely, defeating the point, and rounding down means that they'll never get refilled...

Note that a "partial replenishment" mechanism would make missiles more interesting (and, if they replenish slower than fighters, different enough to be worthy of implementation).

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#25 Post by Ophiuchus » Tue Jun 02, 2020 3:12 pm

LienRag wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 1:20 pm
How do you round fractions, though ? Can the game keep track of "fractioned" fighters so they don't show up in the UI but are still there until they add up to a "full" fighter ? Because if it doesn't, rounding up means low number of losses get refilled entirely, defeating the point, and rounding down means that they'll never get refilled...
I would probably use randomness, so if you had 25% refill and a hangar capacity of 3, there would be 25% chance of getting 0 fighters back and 75% chance of getting 1 fighter back.
If you had two hangars with capacity 3 (so in sum 6), there would be 50% chance of getting one 1 fighter back and 50% getting two fighters back.
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#26 Post by LienRag » Tue Jun 02, 2020 11:26 pm

Ophiuchus wrote:
Tue Jun 02, 2020 3:12 pm
LienRag wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 1:20 pm
How do you round fractions, though ? Can the game keep track of "fractioned" fighters so they don't show up in the UI but are still there until they add up to a "full" fighter ? Because if it doesn't, rounding up means low number of losses get refilled entirely, defeating the point, and rounding down means that they'll never get refilled...
I would probably use randomness, so if you had 25% refill and a hangar capacity of 3, there would be 25% chance of getting 0 fighters back and 75% chance of getting 1 fighter back.
If you had two hangars with capacity 3 (so in sum 6), there would be 50% chance of getting one 1 fighter back and 50% getting two fighters back.
Yes, it probably can work.
Making the calculation at fleet levels rather than for individual carriers would reduce the need to round, also.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#27 Post by Ophiuchus » Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:03 am

LienRag wrote:
Tue Jun 02, 2020 11:26 pm
Making the calculation at fleet levels rather than for individual carriers would reduce the need to round, also.
Good and true. But I guess the implementation is one or two orders of magnitude more complicated and randomness tends to even out in numbers, so I still prefer to implement it ship-based.
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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Re: Suggestions for a Carrier/Fighter revision

#28 Post by Oberlus » Wed Jun 03, 2020 8:05 am

For simplicity and better player experience (less uncertainty), I suggest rounding up.

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