Author Topic: Teleport Raiders and the Wrath (Lance) of the Teuthida  (Read 828 times)

Offline Diazo

  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,717
  • I love/hate Diff 10
Teleport Raiders and the Wrath (Lance) of the Teuthida
« on: February 10, 2013, 08:17:40 PM »
Alright.

This game is actually complete but I ran into several of the new things I wanted to be toss out there.

First, a couple disclaimers however. I'd attempted a couple 10/10 games, and then the new astro trains at 8 for both AIs and got horrendously trampled so I wanted something simple.

So, I started a pretty vanilla diff 7/7 game, taking the teleport raiders to experiment with them after their (at the time) recent overhaul.

7/7 is quite far below where I should be playing, I had 16,500 unused knowledge and finished the game at 9 hours, 20 minutes with an AIP of 268, that includes the 200 AIP for destroying both AI home command stations.

Game Summary

1: My homeworld on the right.
2: First system I captured in center
3: Second system I captured on the left
4: AI HW Top Left
5: AI HW Bottom Left

My plan with taking the teleport raiders was to hop systems and that can be seen by the fact that the first system I captured was 3 hops from my homeworld and the second I captured 4 hops out from that.

Teleport Raiders are great at tachyon raiding though, having captured only those two systems I had every system on the map within 4 hops of one of my systems and I proceeded to scout the entire map. Scouts as far as they could go with teleport raiders behind cleaning up tachyons so the next wave of scouts could get a system farther out.

Next up was CSGs. I actually got pretty lucky on placement for these. You can see the node in the center where I was able to capture most of the systems I needed with a few on the left. A an absolute minimum of 8 systems captured is needed to take out the CSGs, I did this game only capturing 9 systems.

You'll note the closest system I captured to either homeworld is 3 hops, the mobility of the teleport raider permits me to be that far out and still project the force I need into the homeworlds to crack them. I did end up bringing my main fleet into both homeworlds, but the initial entry was all the teleport raiders.

Now, we are at the point in the game I wanted to talk about.



Homeworld Balance

As I mentioned, I was cruising along, a diff 7/7 game is well below my play level. Having said that, both homeworlds were a steep, steep spike in difficulty that actually slowed me down a lot. Of the 9:20:00 playtime, at least 02:00:00 of that was the homeworld assaults.

My concern here is that it might be too steep, I'm very experienced at the game and it felt like I'd just slammed into a wall when I first tried assaulting the homeworlds. And neither homeworld had a Core Eye either, so they could have been more difficult.

Now, one did have a Teuthida and one had a Wrath Lance and those are almost the entirety of this wall I hit.



Teuthida
I'd argue this thing is broken at the moment. Because drones keep spawning as long as any human ship is in system (including scouts), what happened to me was I had a scout in the system then several minutes later was ready to actually attack. As soon as my force entered the system, all those drones that had spawned since the scout entered and sat there swarmed me.

At a self-attrition time of 4 minutes, that's in theory 240 drones, realistically probably 200 drones that reach your fleet.  200 drones is 2000 of your ships zombied that get thrown back in your face.

Once I scrapped my scouts and waited 5 minutes before re-entering the homeworld things were much more reasonable as there were no drones waiting for me and the post was difficult, but not out of line for what it is supposed to be as I was able to exploit the Sniper Coverage my scout starships grant to close with my starships to take the post out.

I'm thinking a health nerf would not go awry either. Because the Teuthida can't actually do anything to my star ships because of the sniper coverage, they spent quite a while sitting there just pounding on the Teuthida while it could not do anything in return.

I'm only talking dropping it from 120 million health to 80 or 90 million health though, it is supposed to be tough to take down.



Wrath lance
This thing was actually more troublesome then the Teuthida, at least after I figured out I had to scrap my scouts to make the Teuthida killable.

Unlike the Teuthida, there are no immunities to exploit here. The only real exploit available is to take advantage of the fact that the Wrath Lance is not AOE, the first unit its beam hits is the only ship to take damage from the beam from that frame. (Note that each of the 4 directions looks to be made up of 9 beams each.)

However, the wrath lance puts out so much damage I'm not sure how to exploit that. I used cheats to spawn a bunch of spire sheidcraft with 280 million combined health. A single pass from a single direction beam easily killed the shieldcraft and the units they were supposed to be protecting.

So, the next option is to not get hit. Hello teleport raiders. Exploiting the teleport I was able to get about 1 and a half full salvos off from my raiders before they died. As I had Mk IV teleport raiders I was able to do decent damage before they died, but I was still sending 640 units on a one-way suicide run which tanked my economy something fierce. It took 5 or 6 total wipes of my teleport raiders directly attacking the wrath lance, and probably 3 more wipes of my raiders to clear out the other units in the system so I could focus on the wrath lance.

That's between 8 and 10 wipes of 640 ships to destroy a single unit. That seems a little high to me.

Now, cloaking is also supposed to work against these so I have two suggestions on these.

1) Also reduce the health, again only from 120 million to 80 or 90 million. By the time you have done 80 million damage, the post is dead. It is just a matter of how many waves of ships you are going to have to throw at it.

2) Reduce their turn speed. If a lance touches a unit it is dead, no questions asked. (I tried doing the math and got something like 6 million DPS per sub-beam, with 9 sub-beams per directional beam it is simply not survivable.) Therefore, slow the turn speed on the lance to allow ships to get two or three salvos off before the beam catches up and destroys them.

That would make the Wrath Lance much more reasonable to me.



Strategic Reserve and Special Forces

These felt right. I certainly noticed both in taking ARS systems and the homeworld. The strategic reserve actually killed a lot of my teleport raiders that were engaging Teuthida/Wrath Lance at the time.

However, neither actually had a chance of stopping me. They added time and complexity to taking systems and did make it tougher, but not hard enough that I had to change my plans about the system. I think that is where this is supposed to be though?

Now, maybe they are a little high? I was playing on 7/7 so it would take a larger contingent of Special Forces to hinder me then it would to hinder someone who's playing 7/7 for the first time.



Teleport Raiders

I love these things. True, I can't raid a Raid Engine or other unique, high-value targets because of the minor electric ammo, but flying around picking guard posts off? Oh yes.

The only Core Guard post the Teleport Raiders did not solo kill was a Spire Shield Guard post (the forcefield with 180 million HP) that was in range of the Mk III Fortress by the AI's home command. My bombers ended up being the one to handle that one since they came to kill that fortress anyway.

I'm not ready to say they are OP, I churned through an awful lot of them. (Just checked my stats, 17,000 teleport raiders built by me during this game.)

However, I would say the re-work has made them viable as a unit and they are certainly in my 'to-play' list so I will be taking them again sometime soonish.



So, I actually finished a game and came to celebrate!

"Experimenting" with 10/10 games and new features (You crazy Astrotrains) does not lend itself to winning many games.

D.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2013, 09:03:11 PM by Diazo »

Offline Faulty Logic

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,194
  • Bane of the AI
Re: Teleport Raiders and the Wrath (Lance) of the Teuthida
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2013, 02:30:48 PM »
Quote
As I mentioned, I was cruising along, a diff 7/7 game is well below my play level. Having said that, both homeworlds were a steep, steep spike in difficulty that actually slowed me down a lot. Of the 9:20:00 playtime, at least 02:00:00 of that was the homeworld assaults.

My concern here is that it might be too steep, I'm very experienced at the game and it felt like I'd just slammed into a wall when I first tried assaulting the homeworlds. And neither homeworld had a Core Eye either, so they could have been more difficult.
Well, you had a tiny empire. In most games, the player expands quite a bit more before the HW assaults. And the HWs are supposed to be the hardest part, as the are the goal of the entire game.

Quote
I'd argue this thing is broken at the moment. Because drones keep spawning as long as any human ship is in system (including scouts), what happened to me was I had a scout in the system then several minutes later was ready to actually attack. As soon as my force entered the system, all those drones that had spawned since the scout entered and sat there swarmed me.
Quote
Once I scrapped my scouts and waited 5 minutes before re-entering the homeworld things were much more reasonable as there were no drones waiting for me and the post was difficult, but not out of line for what it is supposed to be as I was able to exploit the Sniper Coverage my scout starships grant to close with my starships to take the post out.
You just said it was broken and reasonable in the same post...

Quote
I'm thinking a health nerf would not go awry either. Because the Teuthida can't actually do anything to my star ships because of the sniper coverage, they spent quite a while sitting there just pounding on the Teuthida while it could not do anything in return.
I don't think the new core posts need a nerf. As for the "once you figure it out, it is grindy" factor, I would argue that time is of the essence in most endgames, and supporting your empire during that grind is part of the difficulty.

Quote
However, the wrath lance puts out so much damage I'm not sure how to exploit that. I used cheats to spawn a bunch of spire sheidcraft with 280 million combined health. A single pass from a single direction beam easily killed the shieldcraft and the units they were supposed to be protecting.
That's bizarre. I tried "spirecraft to the rescue" and they survived two passes, dying on the third. How close were they to the Lance?

Quote
That's between 8 and 10 wipes of 640 ships to destroy a single unit. That seems a little high to me.
A ton of squishy units against a brutal post doesn't seem bad at all.

Quote
1) Also reduce the health, again only from 120 million to 80 or 90 million. By the time you have done 80 million damage, the post is dead. It is just a matter of how many waves of ships you are going to have to throw at it.
Same argument as above, remember you are attacking the HWs with the minimum possible force.

You can also lessen the effects of each pass by having your ships move against the lances as they pass, and reduce the rate of lance passes by moving with the lances.

Quote
Teleport Raiders
I love these things.
To each his own.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2013, 02:32:50 PM by Faulty Logic »
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline Diazo

  • Master Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,717
  • I love/hate Diff 10
Re: Teleport Raiders and the Wrath (Lance) of the Teuthida
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2013, 05:00:04 PM »
Quote
As I mentioned, I was cruising along, a diff 7/7 game is well below my play level. Having said that, both homeworlds were a steep, steep spike in difficulty that actually slowed me down a lot. Of the 9:20:00 playtime, at least 02:00:00 of that was the homeworld assaults.

My concern here is that it might be too steep, I'm very experienced at the game and it felt like I'd just slammed into a wall when I first tried assaulting the homeworlds. And neither homeworld had a Core Eye either, so they could have been more difficult.
Well, you had a tiny empire. In most games, the player expands quite a bit more before the HW assaults. And the HWs are supposed to be the hardest part, as the are the goal of the entire game.
Matter of opinion I guess? I do prefer the low-AIP playstyle and that lends itself to smaller empires, but I did have CSGs enabled so I don't think I was hugely smaller then average?
Quote
Quote
I'd argue this thing is broken at the moment. Because drones keep spawning as long as any human ship is in system (including scouts), what happened to me was I had a scout in the system then several minutes later was ready to actually attack. As soon as my force entered the system, all those drones that had spawned since the scout entered and sat there swarmed me.
Quote
Once I scrapped my scouts and waited 5 minutes before re-entering the homeworld things were much more reasonable as there were no drones waiting for me and the post was difficult, but not out of line for what it is supposed to be as I was able to exploit the Sniper Coverage my scout starships grant to close with my starships to take the post out.
You just said it was broken and reasonable in the same post...
I meant it was reasonable as long as the drones do not pile up to hit you when you warp in.

200 drones attacking at once is broken, 1 drone a second that only starts spawning when you warp in is reasonable.
Quote
Quote
I'm thinking a health nerf would not go awry either. Because the Teuthida can't actually do anything to my star ships because of the sniper coverage, they spent quite a while sitting there just pounding on the Teuthida while it could not do anything in return.
I don't think the new core posts need a nerf. As for the "once you figure it out, it is grindy" factor, I would argue that time is of the essence in most endgames, and supporting your empire during that grind is part of the difficulty.
Matter of opinion again. I'm going to go with a game more in line with the difficulty I need to be at for a challenging game and offer my opinion again after that.

Because I was playing below my level, it could have taken me 2 hours to kill the Teuthida and I would not have been facing any sort of time pressure.

Quote
Quote
However, the wrath lance puts out so much damage I'm not sure how to exploit that. I used cheats to spawn a bunch of spire sheidcraft with 280 million combined health. A single pass from a single direction beam easily killed the shieldcraft and the units they were supposed to be protecting.
That's bizarre. I tried "spirecraft to the rescue" and they survived two passes, dying on the third. How close were they to the Lance?
Odd, going to go check again.
Quote
Quote
That's between 8 and 10 wipes of 640 ships to destroy a single unit. That seems a little high to me.
A ton of squishy units against a brutal post doesn't seem bad at all.
Matter of opinion I guess? It was somewhat annoying that my wave of raiders would get a single shot off and then just vanish a second later as the lance came around then I was waiting for the rebuild cycle to complete.
Quote
Quote
1) Also reduce the health, again only from 120 million to 80 or 90 million. By the time you have done 80 million damage, the post is dead. It is just a matter of how many waves of ships you are going to have to throw at it.
Same argument as above, remember you are attacking the HWs with the minimum possible force.

You can also lessen the effects of each pass by having your ships move against the lances as they pass, and reduce the rate of lance passes by moving with the lances.

Quote
Teleport Raiders
I love these things.
To each his own.

Off to do that quick Spirecraft check.

D.

edit: spirecraft check.

spawn them using "spirecraft to the rescue" spawned 10 sheildbearers with a combined 420 million health (someone check my math?).
A "tick" of wrath lance damage will be the lance turning on the screen to the next angle as it turns.
It only takes 5 or 6 ticks for the wrath lance to kill all 10 shieldbearers.
The spirecraft spawn roughly 20,000 units from the wrath lance (using a missile frigate spawned by "core cruisin" to estimate the range. This is on normal combat style, normal caps.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2013, 05:10:04 PM by Diazo »

Offline Faulty Logic

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,194
  • Bane of the AI
Re: Teleport Raiders and the Wrath (Lance) of the Teuthida
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2013, 05:31:17 PM »
Quote
Matter of opinion I guess? I do prefer the low-AIP playstyle and that lends itself to smaller empires, but I did have CSGs enabled so I don't think I was hugely smaller then average?

That's definitely smaller than average, though I tend to play that way as well.

Quote
Matter of opinion again.
Yeah, it's definitely a matter of opinion. And our viewpoints aren't necessarily disjoint. Not sarcasm.

Quote
spawn them using "spirecraft to the rescue" spawned 10 sheildbearers with a combined 420 million health (someone check my math?).
Your math is correct. Further tests of mine show inconsistent results, so it could easily have been a glitch.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2013, 05:53:04 PM by Faulty Logic »
If warheads can't solve it, use more warheads.

Offline Hearteater

  • Core Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,334
Re: Teleport Raiders and the Wrath (Lance) of the Teuthida
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2013, 08:58:00 PM »
I just double-checked and the drones do keep spawning, even with just a normal scout.  I must have been doing something really weird and pulled out completely and not remembered.