Author Topic: Ow.  (Read 6326 times)

Offline Faulty Logic

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Ow.
« on: April 18, 2013, 01:04:30 PM »
70 planets Spokes 1417703512 Fireflies (I like this ship.)

Marauders 4 (apparently this means a lot of pirates)
Resistance 10 (and they still don't show up very often)
Rebellions 4 (haven't survived long enough to see these yet)
Roaming Enclaves 4
Golems 4
Spirecraft 4 (these exos hurt)
Spire Civilian Leaders (Spire Pain Generators)

10/10 Vanilla/Feeding Parasite (Vanilla is actually harder...)

Normal+Champ (who has been more a liability than asset thus far), Schizo, Complete visibility, No Plots, No AIP/time

As of writing this, my first run ended at 4 hours to the first exo (4 hours? that is crazy fast). My closest save is about half an hour back.

So, what does the black box say?

Mainly that SCLs hurt.

00:00:02 Map is relatively friendly, but far from ideal. The two hubs closest to my HW have little of interest around them (just two ARS out of 19 planets), so I need to deal with either crazy AIP or multiple chokepoints.

Unlock Harvester IIIs because I need to do stuff fast. If I had more time (damn those SCLs), one of the station upgrades III would be a better investment, because my planned empire is relatively resource-poor.

I immediately colonize the nearest hub, and repel the first waves without issue, building the turretball, and supporting it with a stream of fireflies.

At half an hour, I conquer an ARS world (mirrors) with pysite. I use the resulting jumpships to pop all the DCs (6), and 5 of those accursed collaborators. I also have two free by the first hour.
Fortress I and Firefly II take care of defence, for now.

Hour two is spent cleaning up the threat, then freeing the remaining leaders. I also colonized a system with a widow golem, which really helps for cleaning threatballs.

Hour three: Clean up the threat, colonize regen golem and a hub system. The guard post changes make the early game much tougher, as well as giving planetary marks meaning again (mkIV posts hurt. A lot.)

3:10 Economy recovering from regen rebuild/nemesis-repelling fortress.

3:15 CPA of 4300 ships declared.
3:30 CPA dealt with. (Widow under champ shields kills 200 ships per run. Martyr kills 2000 ships)

This also marks where my game will start next AAR portion.

3:40 Commence hacking an ARS/cursed system for tackle drones (the ultimate hacking fleetship). It's really easy. Except that when it spawns a spire blade spawner, it isn't a mindless zombie. It's threatfleet.

3:45 Pop warp counter posts on the hacked system. Despite reading as mkII, these send waves 4 hops away.

3:50 Hack complete, system colonized, TDs unlocked, Cursed repairs commencing, and wow that exo counter advanced a lot faster than I thought it would.

4:00 Exo. I just wasn't ready. (Did you increase exo spawn rates in their recent buff?)

I tried a few times, and it always ended in brownout-then-death.


The game got a lot harder. Guardposts, faster, tougher exos, and the lazy changes... it's almost like you don't want people winning 10/10.

Though the AI unlocking blade spawners and infiltrators (each incredibly painful, but in different ways) does not help.

This particular game is interesting: I have strong motivation to both take my time (my freed SCLs) and move as fast as humanly possible (exos).

Finally: Hunter-Killer mkIII? With SC shield V escorts? On the first exo? <Thread title>
« Last Edit: April 18, 2013, 01:11:26 PM by Faulty Logic »
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2013, 02:27:24 PM »
4:00 Exo. I just wasn't ready. (Did you increase exo spawn rates in their recent buff?)
Indirectly, yes.  Both you and Kahuna have had your exhaust pipes handed you via platter by the first exo as a result, so I'm guessing it's a bit much.  Basically the goal was to bring with-superweapons up to the challenge level you were encountering on without-superweapons.

Anyway, here's the recent changes in numbers:

In 6.016, in the logic for broken-golems-hard, botnet-golem-hard, and spirecraft-hard where every minute (specifically, on the 22nd second of each minute) the AIP is added to the exo counter (thus this controls the frequency/timing of exos, not the size), but similar to CPAs there's an "Alternate Minimum AIP" to make sure these don't ever really leave you alone even on low-AIP :

It used to be:

Code: [Select]
            int minimumEffectiveAIP = 50 + ( Game.Instance.GameSecond / 360 )
But now it is:

Code: [Select]
        int divisor = 360;
        if ( AIDifficulty >= 8 )
            divisor -= ( 120 * ( AIDifficulty - 8 ) ).IntValue;

        int minimumEffectiveAIP = 50 + ( Game.Instance.GameSecond / divisor );

Or to put it in more natural terms, here's how many points it gets per minute, old and new:

HourOld ResultNew Result On Diff 9New Result On Diff 10
1606580
27080110
38095140
490110170
5100125200
6110140230
7120155260
8130170290
9140185320
10150200350

Note 1: 8 is the same as it used to be, and between 8 and 9 isn't much worse, etc.
Note 2: there are also ceilings on this rule (250 on <= 8, 375 on 9, 750 on 10) but generally you're not going to encounter them in a normal-length game.

If for some reason your AIP is higher than the listed number at the time, that's used instead.

Suggestions on alternate numbers are welcome, just bear in mind that this is for balancing all the cheese you can pull off with golems or spirecraft, etc.  And the fact that you have _both_ on hard on 10/10 is basically guaranteed to hurt.  Multiple exo sources = intentional ow.  10/10 = intentional ow.  Multiple exo sources on 10/10 = ... well, I'm guessing you enjoy this for some reason ;)


In 6.014 there was also the change to the special difficulty multiplier (which affects exo size among other things), it used to be:
If Diff < 7, then Diff*0.15
If Diff = 7, then 1
If Diff = 8, then 1.5
If Diff = 9, then 2.5
If Diff = 10, then 5

Now the same is up to 8, but:
If Diff = 9, then 3
If Diff = 10, then 6

(both before and after, midway difficulties are just linearly interpolated, so 7.3 gives a multiplier of 1.15)


Quote
it's almost like you don't want people winning 10/10.
Yea it does seem like that doesn't it.


Quote
Though the AI unlocking blade spawners and infiltrators (each incredibly painful, but in different ways) does not help.
Yea, that was the RNG coming out swinging.

Quote
This particular game is interesting: I have strong motivation to both take my time (my freed SCLs) and move as fast as humanly possible (exos).
I think the exos win that particular tug of war; the SCLs can deal ;)

Quote
Finally: Hunter-Killer mkIII? With SC shield V escorts? On the first exo? <Thread title>
Is that how you say "Doom" in your language?
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Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2013, 03:27:53 PM »
Even with a best-case exo loadout (staggered waves on a single choke) and half an hour of preparations (38 mks of spire ram, widow and regen golem) and almost exclusively defensive unlocks, the first exo wins.

When intensities 4 and 4 are much harder than 10 and 6 were, you have a balance issue.

Reset the exo rate to what it was, while maintaining their strength increase (they also got a pretty significant buff WRT starships).

So it will still grow quadratically, will still be an ironclad reason to keep moving, will still kill you/destroy something vital with increasing frequency, and will still require some kind of chokepoint, but it won't be a flat "I win" at hour 4.
« Last Edit: April 18, 2013, 03:35:50 PM by Faulty Logic »
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2013, 03:35:30 PM »
but it won't be a flat "I win" at hour 4.
But it likes its I-Win button!
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Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2013, 03:37:18 PM »
Quote
But it likes its I-Win button!
Nerf the exos, or I pull out the heavy-duty cheese. And the AI does. not. want that to happen  >D
« Last Edit: April 18, 2013, 03:57:59 PM by Faulty Logic »
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2013, 03:38:59 PM »
Hmm, it saw visions of MkV Riots and Warhead Fortresses, and I think it's reconsidering.
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Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2013, 03:50:52 PM »
More seriously, does resetting the rate while maintaining the strength seem reasonable?
Maybe increase the strength later if it that ends up being too easy?
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2013, 04:06:05 PM »
More seriously, does resetting the rate while maintaining the strength seem reasonable?
Maybe increase the strength later if it that ends up being too easy?
I'm thinking of going with:

Code: [Select]
        int divisor = 360;
        if ( AIDifficulty >= 8 )
            divisor -= ( 30 * ( AIDifficulty - 8 ) ).IntValue;

        int minimumEffectiveAIP = 50 + ( Game.Instance.GameSecond / divisor );

Note the "30" instead of "120" on line 3, so:

HourOld Result6.021 Result On Diff 96.021 Result On Diff 10Proposed Result on Diff 9Proposed Result on Diff 10
160658060.9162
2708011071.8274
3809514082.7386
49011017093.6498
5100125200104.55110
6110140230115.45122
7120155260126.36134
8130170290137.27146
9140185320148.18158
10150200350159.09170

In other words, a more subtle (but significant, Diff 10 getting a roughly 17% boost compared to Diff <=8) use of the same rule.  By itself, probably difficult to notice.  Combined with the special difficulty multiplier, pain.  But probably not "I Win".

For reference, before 6.021 the AMP rule meant that the exo counter for those sources would get about 16,800 points in the first four hours (which is still what you get on Diff <= 8 ).  After 6.021 on Diff 10 it would get about 33,600 points in the first four hours.  Under these new proposed numbers on Diff 10 it would get about 20,640 points in the first four hours.
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Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2013, 04:13:17 PM »
Looks good.
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline Oralordos

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2013, 04:31:06 PM »

Offline Winge

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2013, 05:02:05 PM »
Warhead Fortresses

That's no moon...
PS:  two words:  scroll right

« Last Edit: April 18, 2013, 09:56:21 PM by Winge »
My other bonus ship is a TARDIS.

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2013, 05:42:57 PM »
No, it is a moon, it's just a moon that happens to also be a nuclear warhead.

Construction was complicated.
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Offline LaughingThesaurus

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2013, 06:20:15 PM »
Keith, you don't often construct moons. They're natural.

So imagine that. A naturally occurring moon-sized nuclear warhead. I mean, the galaxy created massive fusion reactors naturally, created invisible matter naturally... why not a nuke?

Offline Faulty Logic

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2013, 10:42:48 AM »
Given the name of the next expansion, I thought I'd give the AI some more reasons to direct that vengeance at me:

70 planet Spokes 265230677 Fireflies

Marauders 4 (apparently this means a lot of pirates)
Resistance 10 (and they still don't show up very often)
Rebellions 4 (haven't survived long enough to see these yet)
Roaming Enclaves 4
Golems 4
Spirecraft 4 (survival possible?)
Spire Civilian Leaders (want to win with these enabled)

10/10 Feeding Parasite/Vanilla (Vanilla is actually harder...)

Normal+champ, comp-vis, schizo, no plots.

And the AI has tackle drone launchers. OW. I have regularly faced groups of 40 of these things. The mk hubI started with 17. These need a nerf in AI hands, otherwise it basically says "no fleetships allowed." Everywhere. My fleet's been small enough to be covered by diplomatic immunity so far, though.

They also have infiltrators, because the AI should always have something with both cloaking and forcefield immunity  ::)

===Operation Collaborator Termination====

I immediately unlock Harvester IIIs, conquer my only neighbor, and put down the full cap of missile turrets. These, fireflies, fighters, and Negotiation take me past the first couple waves.

Conquered the next world before it reinforces, gaining access to pysite. Jumpships (buffed indirectly by the starship changes) and raid/bombers kill the 8 data centers, terminate 5 collaborators, and free 3 civvies by gametime 1 hour.

Pause was used extensively, because I hate time pressure.

Cleaned up threat fallout, conquered next two hubs (one had a co-p, annoyingly) repaired the cursed golem, and I'm set to free the other two civilians with jumpships, though this will require eating two counterwaves. I'll also pop the other 3 co-ps, to keep AIP close to reasonable.

I've also colonized the three civvies I freed, one coming with a black widow, as yet unrepaired.

Fireflies mkI-III really help when you need to move fast.

===Operation Civilian Freedom====
They'd better be grateful.

Wasn't actually that complicated. Unlocked flagship/bomber starship mkII, and freed the remaining two leaders, one at a time, with the youngling stream, cursed golem, and Negotiator handling threat fallout. Pulled back the cursed to deal with counterwaves, and the fleet to deal with a double normal wave.

Golems seem to be made of tissue paper, these days. Maybe it's just that the AI always targets them above anything else. I think golems (and spirecraft, to a lesser extent) need some rebuffing. They don't feel like like superweapons anymore, when they lose to a ~500 mark II ships.

Anyway, I have the last two hubs (one ARS; scapegoats) and last two leaders (one with a hive, one with a core paralyzer fab) colonized by the time the first CPA declares.

It threatballs on the choke, except for ~500 hiding on a core world. Widow runs under champ shield reduce it to mostly TDLs, which are a certifiable nightmare in AI hands.

It's like when the low-cap ships were designed, someone went through what they thought those ships would be vulnerable to, and then gave them all of those immunities.

Hmm, really getting sidetracked today. Stopping here. Gametime 3:19, AIP 98

K unlocks: fortress, harvester IIIs, riotIIs, fireflies II/III, missile turret II, HBC, grav Is, miniforts, hardened ffs I, flagshipIIs, heavy bomber starship IIs, warp jammers. 9750 k unspent.

Captures: Cursed and Widow (active), Hive (unrepaired), 1 ARS (scapegoats), and three fabricators (core etherjets, core paralyzers, core electric bombers).

State of Empire:
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline TechSY730

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Re: Ow.
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2013, 12:30:53 PM »
And the AI has tackle drone launchers. OW. I have regularly faced groups of 40 of these things. The mk hubI started with 17. These need a nerf in AI hands, otherwise it basically says "no fleetships allowed."

How the crud did they get 17 of them on game spawn? Did that planet have only 17 of them and like nothing else mobile on that planet? Even with difficulty 10, and the planet "specialization" logic, this seems like something fishy/buggy is going on.

Anyways, I have been wondering about these "spawner" units, and I think I realized something. Due to the nature of spawner units (Spire blade spawners and Tackle Drone Launchers), their net "utility" goes up faster than linear over the number of spawners. This means that the AI paying the properly scaled costs due to their low ship cap, especially past normal cap, still isn't enough; it would still be giving the AI too much and making it pay to little as they get over cap, as each additional "spawner" over cap gives even more return for their cost.
Maybe do something like what was done for the Zombard, increase the "cost" of spawner units for the AI? Yea, that won't fix it truly, as that point where they get increasingly "more bang for their buck" would still happen (it will always happen eventually so long as their count isn't capped AND their cost is constant), but it may delay it to the point where you have a chance to reasonably fight it in the early to mid game if the AI decides to "specialize" lots of planets to use them.


Quote
They also have infiltrators, because the AI should always have something with both cloaking and forcefield immunity  ::)

Hooray, the AI getting a good raiding ship. Fun times. :D

Now you might be happy that they get anti-matter ammo. ;)