Author Topic: 7/7 Advice needed  (Read 3735 times)

Offline Tridus

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7/7 Advice needed
« on: May 04, 2013, 09:42:01 AM »
I've won 7/7 once before, with Fallen Spire on. That tends to suit how I play other games, because I like to systematically conquer everything in sight and FS is great for that (particularly once the cities start giving you insanely powerful defenses).

So to try and improve at AI War, this time I'm playing with FS off in a more conventional style game. Here's the setup:

- 7/7 Random Easier (I tried Random Moderate earlier, and the results were ugly, particularly the game that had those fancy new Eyes showing up with alarming frequency)
- Simple mapgen, 80 planets, normal ships
- Zenith Traders, Dyson 4, Broken Golems (Medium), Botnet Golems (Medium), and Spire Civilian Leaders are on
- Bonus ship is Space Tanks

Here's the initial area around my starting point. Starting next to a mk IV world is something I wasn't happy about, but the area does have two interesting features, as shown in these two screenshots.





The Hive Golem is a very tempting target, particuarly as it comes with a civilian leader. Next door is the Superterminal. Now I've never actually used a Superterminal before, but my understanding is that they're very powerful if used correctly. The downside of starting so far down in the corner of the map is that I'm going to have to go a long way to win the game, so I'm going to need that AIP reduction. How much can I expect to get out of it before the hacking response gets out of hand?

Initial unlocks were Harvesters III (both), Heavy Beam Cannon 1, and Mini Fortress. By this screenshot I've also picked up Millitary Command Stations II, Hardened FF I, and Engineers II.

What I'm looking for now is some advice on what to unlock next. I could take Fortresses or some turret upgrades, as the Hive Golem is going to boost my offense anyway. That said, some mk II ships would be useful too. I'm just not sure which ones. Considering the planet that has the Hive Golem also has two Ion Cannons and is all around not looking pleasant, the firepower might be useful right now.



Thanks! :)

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2013, 11:25:14 AM »
- Zenith Traders, Dyson 4, Broken Golems (Medium), Botnet Golems (Medium), and Spire Civilian Leaders are on
The SCLs may be a net loss for you, depending.  If you're trying to ease into non-FS 7/7 those may not be the way :)  At least you've got no exo sources, though.

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Next door is the Superterminal. Now I've never actually used a Superterminal before, but my understanding is that they're very powerful if used correctly. The downside of starting so far down in the corner of the map is that I'm going to have to go a long way to win the game, so I'm going to need that AIP reduction. How much can I expect to get out of it before the hacking response gets out of hand?
Two things:

1) You probably won't need more AIP reduction than you get from data centers.  If so, the coprocs will help.  You can get pretty high in AIP in a 7/7 game, compared to higher stuff.  I'm routinely in the 300+ range and it's not really a big threat even with no chokepoint.

2) You can get quite a bit of AIP reduction from the Superterminal.  Given that you haven't tried it before I suggest some experimental attempts where you fully intend to savescum back to before the attempt.  I can explain the nuts and bolts of what it does, but just experiencing it is both faster and more fun :)

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What I'm looking for now is some advice on what to unlock next.
I suggest focusing on offense unless you're having trouble defensively.  Specifically grab mkI spire + mkI zenith and build up your starship "strikeforce".  Honestly starships are really good right now so you can basically just use them as your primary strikeforce if that's how you like to play.  You can also mix in fleet ships pretty easily with the Mobile Space Dock for 3000 K, though that takes a degree of learning how to do it.

So really the question on the unlocks is: how do you like to play?  Starship-heavy? Fleetship-heavy? Impenetrable defense and offense-when-you-feel-like it? Crazy Micro Tricks?
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Offline Tridus

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2013, 01:51:11 PM »
The SCLs may be a net loss for you, depending.  If you're trying to ease into non-FS 7/7 those may not be the way :)  At least you've got no exo sources, though.

Yeah I didn't turn those on to make it easier. I just think they're a really neat game mechanic and I like having them on. :) (Plus it's not really a big negative if I can get three of them fast enough.)

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1) You probably won't need more AIP reduction than you get from data centers.  If so, the coprocs will help.  You can get pretty high in AIP in a 7/7 game, compared to higher stuff.  I'm routinely in the 300+ range and it's not really a big threat even with no chokepoint.

hmm, okay.

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2) You can get quite a bit of AIP reduction from the Superterminal.  Given that you haven't tried it before I suggest some experimental attempts where you fully intend to savescum back to before the attempt.  I can explain the nuts and bolts of what it does, but just experiencing it is both faster and more fun :)

Will do. :) I know it uses the hacking mechanic, but I haven't played with that very much.

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I suggest focusing on offense unless you're having trouble defensively.  Specifically grab mkI spire + mkI zenith and build up your starship "strikeforce".  Honestly starships are really good right now so you can basically just use them as your primary strikeforce if that's how you like to play.  You can also mix in fleet ships pretty easily with the Mobile Space Dock for 3000 K, though that takes a degree of learning how to do it.

So really the question on the unlocks is: how do you like to play?  Starship-heavy? Fleetship-heavy? Impenetrable defense and offense-when-you-feel-like it? Crazy Micro Tricks?

I do like Starships, particularly after a rather ugly incident with an Ion Eye that I had recently. <_<  Plus the planet I want to take with the Hive Golem has an Ion III and an Ion IV on it, so strong Starships are going to be an advantage. I haven't played much since the new Zenith & Spire starships were added, so I'll give those a try. Thanks!

Normally I like to use a lot of defense, so at some point I expect to pick up some mk II turrets and the fortress. So far it hasn't been a problem. I will say that I think mini forts were a great addition to the game. They're not exactly overpowering at all, but they do provide a handy source of turret repair at a defense point and something to throw on a planet in the middle of nowhere to block one stray ship from destroying everything.

Offline Tridus

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2013, 03:14:31 PM »
Okay, at the 3.5 hour mark now! I've picked up some more planets, including two fabs: Tackle Drones and Zenith Reprocessors. Not ideal, but they were nearby (and the tackle drones are neat). One advanced research station captured and that was Spire Mini Rams (not finding mk I of those very useful TBH, and won't be unlocking mk II).

I unlocked Leech Starships II, and those are working really well for me. One of the AIs really likes Vampire Claws and Zenith Mirrors, and I'm reclaiming a ton of those to help me out. Also unlocked Fortress I, and have one of those down at my southern chokepoint where I'm setting up a defense for waves.  Added Zenith Starship II, Spire Starship II, and Flagship II to that, as they weren't very expensive and provide significant firepower.

I just took a system with a second SCL. More importantly as this screenshot shows, next door is both another advanced research station and a Botnet Golem. I've got the power to bring it online, but with Broken Golems (Medium) the AIP cost for it is a crazy 100. So my current plan is to capture that and get it online, then hit the SuperTerminal and try to get the AIP back down.



There is a third SCL to the right, but it's surrounded by nasty worlds and I don't think it's worth trying to take it since I don't see enough value for the grief it'd create. Going to look for one elsewhere, but I need to do some more scouting in general. Another unlock includes a Fab: Space Plane, which is one hop to the left of the Botnet Golem.

Have a lot of knowledge available to spend again. I was thinking about Leech Starships III, but if I can get the Botnet Golem that will be somewhat redundant. May unlock some mk II turrets, which will give me more defensive options and beef up the mercenary Neinzul Enclave Starship I managed to build. May also finally unlock a mk II fleet ship, we'll see. I'd like to pick up Riot Starship II because I like those quite a lot, but I've hesitated due to the price. May do it anyway, we'll see.

(Incidentally if you're still reading Keith, the new functionality to have control groups that shut off production is great! I've got the mercenary space dock using it and it's letting me get stuff out without impacting my ability to shift production quickly.)

edit - Oh yeah, one of the worlds I took was one with what I think was a Raid Engine, and TWO Counterattack III guard posts. Dealing with that was... interesting.)
« Last Edit: May 05, 2013, 03:34:11 PM by Tridus »

Offline Hearteater

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2013, 04:33:29 PM »
Unless it has changed, just killing the CS on a world with a SCL makes it work for you, so you could test out assassinating the CS.  Save first though, because it may have changed.  It is one way to cheese SCLs.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2013, 06:01:17 PM »
(Incidentally if you're still reading Keith, the new functionality to have control groups that shut off production is great! I've got the mercenary space dock using it and it's letting me get stuff out without impacting my ability to shift production quickly.)
Glad you're finding it useful :)  Yea, it was a major help in a game I was playing recently too.  No longer do I have to worry about whether my resources are capping out or not: they never are!  And I get a nice extra special-defense fleet (for my ASC planet, as it turned out).  Anyway, Faulty had a good idea with that one.

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edit - Oh yeah, one of the worlds I took was one with what I think was a Raid Engine, and TWO Counterattack III guard posts. Dealing with that was... interesting.)
I bet it was ;)
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Offline Tridus

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2013, 06:41:18 PM »
Unless it has changed, just killing the CS on a world with a SCL makes it work for you, so you could test out assassinating the CS.  Save first though, because it may have changed.  It is one way to cheese SCLs.

In a brief test that didn't work for me, I only got the -3 AIP message when I captured the planet. Just taking out the CS didn't seem to affect it. Maybe it would have kicked in later, I didn't let it run for the hour to see if it'd behave differently.

Offline Tridus

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2013, 06:23:00 PM »
Further in now, this was a screenshot while I played with the SuperTerminal. Managed to get over 100 AIP reduction out of it, but it got really ugly when the hacking response
level hit high.

Did some scouting. Here's the legend for the below SS:
P6 = Spire Civilian Leaders.
P1 = Starship Constructor IV
P4 = Fabrocators
P3 = Dyson Sphere



Based on that, I intend to ignore the top area and focus on the lower/middle area. There's a lot of capturables there, but with how much I've invested into Starships I really want that Starship IV Constructor. The two SCLs on the way are ideal and will allow me to reduce AIP from those instead of increasing it.

Then I'll just capture another fab or two, free the dyson sphere, and continue scouting.

Offline Tridus

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2013, 05:13:14 PM »
Okay, 7.5 hours in now. I rode the SuperTerminal until the response got "Very High", at which point life got interesting. :D

Before I started on it though, I experimented once to see what it'd do. Then I reloaded the game, brought in a mobile builder, and went to town building tons of defenses. A Fortress, two mini fortresses, every turret I had available, and a millitary command mk II. Then I parked my entire fleet there except the Botnet Golem. Brought AIP down from over 400 to under 230.

Something odd happened at it - One of the spawning enemies at the SuperTerminal was Vampire Claws. If they spawned outside of my command station's tachyon range, they had a tendancy to just sit there instead of attacking. At one point I had over 800 of them just sitting around cloaked doing nothing. There's still 89 of them in the system, those are the ones I couldn't find with my scout ship sweeps. It's probably a good thing all 800 didn't attack at once, but it seems kind of strange that zombie bots wouldn't attack. (I have a save if it's something you want to look at, Keith.)

Currently I have control of an advanced starship constructor, and four SCLs. I picked up Zenith & Spire Starships III (and IV) when I got that, and they're proving very useful.

Found an advanced factory over at P0, so I may head that way. There is quite a lot worth capturing along the way, and it would put me closer to the last data center. I've only found one coprocessor so far, and neither AI Homeworld. But with my current scout ships, the range I can get to is somewhat limited. I do have the knowledge available to take advantage of the factory if I can hold it.


Offline Tridus

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2013, 01:46:59 PM »
Okay, over 11 hours now! I captured a Factory IV and a Plasma Siege Starship V fab. I unlocked Flagship III (and IV) and Space Tank II, III, and IV. Still have lots of knowledge left to pick up some more ship types. Also got Millitary Command III and Fortress II for defensive purposes.

I was able to scout everything out as well. All four co-processors are marked with P1, but some of them are way out of my range without prompting a Deepstrike response. Will have to work towards that. There's also two data processors left.

I'm debating if I should attack the nearby AI Home and then start working towards the other one, or if I should move towards both of them and hit the Data Centers & Co Processors first, before hitting one HW (and then the other one right afterward).


Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2013, 01:50:33 PM »
Okay, over 11 hours now! I captured a Factory IV and a Plasma Siege Starship V fab.
The AI's forcefields look very unhappy.  Well, maybe the unhappy ones are actually the units for whom said forcefields are ostensibly protection ;)


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I'm debating if I should attack the nearby AI Home and then start working towards the other one, or if I should move towards both of them and hit the Data Centers & Co Processors first, before hitting one HW (and then the other one right afterward).
Just drop everything and go all in on the first, then the second.  Maybe bring some warheads.  What could go wrong?  :D
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Offline Tridus

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2013, 01:56:36 PM »
The AI's forcefields look very unhappy.  Well, maybe the unhappy ones are actually the units for whom said forcefields are ostensibly protection ;)

:D
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Just drop everything and go all in on the first, then the second.  Maybe bring some warheads.  What could go wrong?  :D

Sounds like a trap to me. ;)

Keith, did you read the earlier comment about the SuperTerminal vampire claws? Is that normal behavior?

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2013, 01:59:47 PM »
Keith, did you read the earlier comment about the SuperTerminal vampire claws? Is that normal behavior?
Normal in that it's been around forever, yes.  Normal as in intended? No.  Cloaking ships are being very shy.  I'm actually digging through the innards of the AI's individual ship tactics right now doing some other stuff, keeping an eye out for that bug.
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Offline TechSY730

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2013, 02:40:18 PM »
Oh good. How the AI treats cloaked ships has been really weird for a long time. Thanks for working on this. :)

Offline Mánagarmr

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Re: 7/7 Advice needed
« Reply #14 on: May 10, 2013, 03:00:09 PM »
You seem to be doing really fine there, so I'll only really comment on the thing people haven't mentioned:

Dealing with AI Eyes.
It's simple really. First off, try not to blob them, because once you outnumber the AI 2:1, they Eye will trigger. No matter what type of eye it is, it'll hurt. Second, don't try to kill the Eye. That's really really really really boring and often unnecessary. Once all the guard posts in the system is destroyed (including the stealth ones, though I think those are visible these days) it will self destruct. A far easier way to deal with it. Raid starships are great for Eye-assassination.
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