Author Topic: The end of radar dampening  (Read 1651 times)

Offline tadrinth

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The end of radar dampening
« on: September 16, 2016, 06:55:07 PM »
Per the Design Doc:

Quote
Radar dampening died in a fire, which is good, though.

Context: A ship with Radar Dampening X cannot be shot at unless you're within X distance. 

The good:
* it was hard to render visually
* not intuitive
* potentially OP (space planes)

But, many of the units that had radar dampening had it for a reason, so I think it would be worthwhile to go through and list what units had it, why they had it, and what to do in AI War 2 to solve that problem.

* Space planes: 5000 range and radar dampening 3000 and high speed; radar dampening defines this ship
AI War 2: it's not coming back (Strafer is an etherjet, not a space plane, whatever the design doc claims) but it was kinda OP anyway. Had the interesting effect of forcing you to include mobile defenders in your setup when these are present in waves; not sure how to recapture. 

* Guard posts: these all have radar dampening so you can't shoot them from outside their range. 
AI War 2: increase guard post range to exceed maximum fleet ship range (but this might make guard post ranges overlap heavily). 

* Raid starships: a squishy ship that relies on radar dampening and avoiding danger to do its job
AI War 2: these had better come back because they're iconic as hell, but without radar dampening I think they may require cloaking to do their job.

* Flagships: support starship; uses radar dampening to avoid being sniped before the engagement starts. 
AI War 2: these might need extra durability to compensate for the lack of radar dampening, or maybe not if nothing is long enough range to snipe them.

* Enclave Starships: support starship; again, can't just snipe these (they're squishy to compensate for soaking fire via drone spam)
AI War 2: not returning

* Needler Guard Posts (mk II+):  Needlers are short-ish ranged turrets, but counter Missile Frigates; radar dampening forces the frigates to close, and makes these a counter to zombards.
AI War 2: same as guardposts, just make these longer range than whatever fleet ships they counter

* Fortress: these have a huge dampening radius which almost never has any effect, and even the devs don't remember why
AI War 2: no changes needed

* (update, h/t Yavaun) Mobile Space Docks: radar dampening to prevent sniping of your support units
AW2: i hope these come back but between a lack of snipers and their cloaking, they should be okay.

Did I miss any? Anyone have any better ideas for covering any holes resulting from the removal?
« Last Edit: September 17, 2016, 01:24:07 PM by tadrinth »

Offline Cinth

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2016, 07:03:21 PM »
From what I've been told, the goal is to move to smaller battlefields within each planet.  I'd expect ranges to be lower overall.  If a unit needs something to make it work in a role, I think a solution can be found that helps it without being annoying.
Quote from: keith.lamothe
Opened your save. My computer wept. Switched to the ST planet and ship icons filled my screen, so I zoomed out. Game told me that it _was_ totally zoomed out. You could seriously walk from one end of the inner grav well to the other without getting your feet cold.

Offline tadrinth

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2016, 07:37:07 PM »
I kinda figured that would be the case; thanks for clarifying that. 

I'm not too worried, but I kept thinking of more and more units that were using it, so I figured it was worth going through them.  Might inform design of units in similar roles. 

Offline Cinth

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2016, 07:43:03 PM »
The quad is also going to have an effect because everything is going to fit in that.
Quote from: keith.lamothe
Opened your save. My computer wept. Switched to the ST planet and ship icons filled my screen, so I zoomed out. Game told me that it _was_ totally zoomed out. You could seriously walk from one end of the inner grav well to the other without getting your feet cold.

Offline Misery

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2016, 09:16:49 PM »
Wont be missing this mechanic here, nope.

I always found it kinda annoying.  Ships tend to behave strangely (strangely to me anyway) when something has radar dampening, and it always confused me.  "Okay, WHY aren't they firing at that thing?  Oh.  It's got THAT.  Bah!"  is my usual reaction. 

Offline kasnavada

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2016, 02:04:48 AM »
* Fortress: these have a huge dampening radius which almost never has any effect, and even the devs don't remember why
AI War 2: no changes needed
I think that's because once they could be sniped. After that the "meta-game" changed into making everything and its mother snipe immune.

I won't be missing this mechanic ever, but what's needed is that turrets & guard posts have longer range.

Offline Yavaun

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2016, 06:39:52 AM »
Yes OP you missed some. I don't recall all of them of the top of my head either but for one there are mobile space docks which are not viable at all without radar dampening. However, if I understood correctly mobile space docks are down the drain along the concept of refleeting as a whole anyway.

Radar jamming, on the other hand, opened an entirely new strategic field and enabled you guys to add like 5 unique ships/structures and diversify others (even if it was just by their ability to ignore radar dampening). What's planned as a replacement for it? If there are no more space planes, raid ships or anything of that sort in addition to low range on every unit - will fighting the AI head on be the only available strategy=
« Last Edit: September 17, 2016, 07:17:33 AM by Yavaun »

Offline Vyndicu

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2016, 04:44:47 PM »
I never found radar dampening itself to be an issue to be frank.

I think you forget that there are a whole group of set of tool that can overcome the radar dampening and make full use of their range.

Artillery Golem (itself is pretty rare and difficult to guarantee you will have one when you need it).
Fallen Spire module railgun.

Beside those two. There was not many good counter to radar dampening short of doing an assault transport drop on top of where you need to go.

Offline Tridus

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2016, 08:47:15 PM »
Mechanically, I think radar dampening was fine. The problem with it was that so many things had it, because they had to be resistant to other insane long range things in order to do their jobs. It was just too common.

If limited to a few specialized things that really need it and fixing the underlying problem that caused it to propagate too much, I think it's a good mechanic to have in the toolbox.

Offline Sestren

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2016, 10:01:53 PM »
Really the worst part of it in my experience is the lack of a visual range for it. When I'm holding z, it would have helped immensely to overlay radar dampening ranges. Otherwise its far too much work to figure out how long your attack force has to stay in the line of fire before it can shoot back.

Offline kasnavada

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2016, 02:34:36 AM »
Mechanically radar dampening was a can of worms.
Once you started to rely on it for one unit everything needed it. And the things that shouldn't have needed it started too.

I think the plane explains by itself the issues of the thing, everything that was stationery was fair game for this one... and radar dampening was its only counter.

Another issue is that radar dampening acts as a full counter to something which already has a counter: long range or slow units are supposed to be countered by fast units. But, fast units weren't fast enough and the "planets" were too big.

By the way, I'm happy to hear that the planets will be somewhat smaller because from what I've seen in the past week, Chris pushes hard for an augmentation of the number of planets, probably by a factor of 2 or 3 (probably subject to change).


Offline Pumpkin

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2016, 02:55:23 AM »
Another issue is that radar dampening acts as a full counter to something which already has a counter: long range or slow units are supposed to be countered by fast units. But, fast units weren't fast enough and the "planets" were too big.
That's a good point. There are plans for making planets smaller and ranges shorter, which is basically like making everybody faster.
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Offline Cinth

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2016, 03:32:00 AM »
By the way, I'm happy to hear that the planets will be somewhat smaller because from what I've seen in the past week, Chris pushes hard for an augmentation of the number of planets, probably by a factor of 2 or 3 (probably subject to change).
He's also said that the overall size should be comparable to what we have in AIWC.
Quote from: keith.lamothe
Opened your save. My computer wept. Switched to the ST planet and ship icons filled my screen, so I zoomed out. Game told me that it _was_ totally zoomed out. You could seriously walk from one end of the inner grav well to the other without getting your feet cold.

Offline Vyndicu

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Re: The end of radar dampening
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2016, 07:32:12 AM »
Mechanically, I think radar dampening was fine. The problem with it was that so many things had it, because they had to be resistant to other insane long range things in order to do their jobs. It was just too common.

If limited to a few specialized things that really need it and fixing the underlying problem that caused it to propagate too much, I think it's a good mechanic to have in the toolbox.

I agree there was far too many units that need radar dampening than those that could overcome. Not everyone want to use those toolsets (fallen spire railgun module, artillery golem, etc...).