Author Topic: How to address the outsized role bombers have?  (Read 619 times)

Online chemical_art

  • Core Member Mark IV
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,865
  • Fabulous
How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« on: August 31, 2016, 10:46:20 AM »
Bombers as a unit are very important in their impact on the game. They are what takes down shields which ultimately makes offensives happen. Without bombers attacks stall and so defensive strategy always include removing them as fast as possible.

"super" units of capital ship are also universally weak to bombers so this also gives bombers and outsized role.

Should this remain the same? I feel like this is tied to how critical force fields are on both sides.

At first no, bombers should not. But I also remember that if bombers are reduced too much, you get what results in a homogeneous fleet which is no fun either. so perhaps it is not that bombers are bad, just the other triangle ships are not ad good?

Life is short. Have fun.

Offline Cinth

  • Global Moderator
  • Core Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,527
  • Volunteer and occasional contractor
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2016, 10:52:58 AM »
Raider SS > Bomber

That is all
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 Captain Jack

  • Hero Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 808
  • Just lucky
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2016, 10:56:10 AM »
Pull bombers out of the basic triangle entirely. It never really made sense to me to have them there in the first place. Make bombers SOLELY for anti-emplacement and large scale ships, while a new ship type is strong against frigates but vulnerable to fighters.

Offline Pumpkin

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,194
  • Neinzul Gardener Enclave
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2016, 11:15:45 AM »
Pull bombers out of the basic triangle entirely. It never really made sense to me to have them there in the first place. Make bombers SOLELY for anti-emplacement and large scale ships, while a new ship type is strong against frigates but vulnerable to fighters.
I would rather say: remove triangle bombers' bonus against structural and UHeavy, and make a new ship type (maybe a basic starship) have them. The players might then escort these anti-FFields/Fortresses starships to their target and guard them while they do their siege job.
Please excuse my english: I'm not a native speaker. Don't hesitate to correct me.
Pumpkin>> Do I need another cure about paranoia on top of overexcitement?
Mal>> We play AI War, enthusiasm and paranoia are both required!

Offline kasnavada

  • Hero Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 911
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2016, 11:50:25 AM »
Bombers were important to me because of one very effective defense the AI has: shields.

Rework shields to have weakness to fighters and bombers will effectively useless. Or to have multiple shields which each have different vulnerability, about like when the guard posts were reworked.

Or remove shields. Not sure about that one. Kind of a major part of what is AI war.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2016, 12:13:49 PM by kasnavada »

Offline Lord Of Nothing

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 118
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2016, 12:05:03 PM »
Bombers were important to me because of one very effective defense the AI has: shields.

Rework shields to have weakness to fighters and bombers will effectively useless. Or to have multiple shields which each have different vulnerability, about like like the guard post were reworked.

Or remove shields. Not sure about that one. Kind of a major part of what is AI war.

Seconding the multiple shields idea, but what about fortresses as well? That's the other big bomber only area.

Offline kasnavada

  • Hero Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 911
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2016, 12:08:07 PM »
Bombers were important to me because of one very effective defense the AI has: shields.

Rework shields to have weakness to fighters and bombers will effectively useless. Or to have multiple shields which each have different vulnerability, about like like the guard post were reworked.

Or remove shields. Not sure about that one. Kind of a major part of what is AI war.

Seconding the multiple shields idea, but what about fortresses as well? That's the other big bomber only area.

Oo.

How the hell did I forget fortresses. Yes, Yes, and Yes, same remarks apply, apart from removal. Fortress can't be removed.

Offline Lord Of Nothing

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 118
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2016, 12:20:09 PM »
Bombers were important to me because of one very effective defense the AI has: shields.

Rework shields to have weakness to fighters and bombers will effectively useless. Or to have multiple shields which each have different vulnerability, about like like the guard post were reworked.

Or remove shields. Not sure about that one. Kind of a major part of what is AI war.

Seconding the multiple shields idea, but what about fortresses as well? That's the other big bomber only area.

Oo.

How the hell did I forget fortresses. Yes, Yes, and Yes, same remarks apply, apart from removal. Fortress can't be removed.

Just had a further thought on this. Should fortresses be human only, while the AI instead gets dire guardposts, using the same counters and mechanics as the regular guardposts, taken to a much greater extreme- bigger overall, more vulnerable to it's counter, more punishing to it's opposite? That seems to fit in more with the rest of the AI's theme, inc guardians+dire guardians, etc, and what we're trying to do by getting away from bombers.

But then how much overlap with homeworld guardposts are we getting into?

Offline Wingflier

  • Core Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 2,732
  • To add me on Steam, click the little Steam icon ^
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2016, 02:24:01 PM »
The problem isn't that bombers are too good, they are simply filling their intended role. The problem is that the hull type system heavily favors certain ships which have bonuses against the most important threats in the game like Heavy and Structural.

Remove the hull type system and even Fighters with their high stats could be decent against some of the things bombers are good against while also countering bombers. This makes Frigates good by proxy because you have to counter the Fighters.

Fighters are the backbone of any fleet in sci fi lore. Bombers are a support role that deal with the heavy threats they can't tackle on their own. Frigates defend the fleet from Fighters. AI War borrowed from the sci fi concept then gave Bombers the importance of Fighters while making Fighters and Frigates the support. That's not going to work.

"Inner peace is the void of expectation. It is the absence of our shared desperation to feel a certain way."

Offline tadrinth

  • Sr. Member Mark II
  • ****
  • Posts: 415
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #9 on: August 31, 2016, 02:30:08 PM »
This seems somewhat relevant: http://www.sirlin.net/ptw-book/7-spies-of-the-mind

Sirlin has a yomi example with a move that's really strong that you want to do.  Then you have a counter to taht move.  Then you have a counter to the counter, and a counter to that.  You don't need any more layers than that; you can just go back to the move you wanted to do in the first place.  IE, its fine that bombers are strong, so long as you encounter enough stuff that counters them often enough that you use other things. IE, as long as you encounter opposing fighters enough to use missile frigates, or whatever. 

I'll also note that a bunch of Dire Guardians have medium hulls, which I interpret as an attempt to make Fighters more valuable midgame. 

Having more variety in Core Guardpost hull types would probably help address the imbalance; I think they're almost all ultra-heavy at the moment. 


Offline zharmad

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,066
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #10 on: August 31, 2016, 03:04:51 PM »
I think bombers aren't too good, rather the players will often realise in a certain situation that they need bombers - this rarely occurs for the other types.
Also I'd rather overhaul the armour/hull combo at the same time, which I see as a higher priority.

One set of potential changes that try to preserve the triangle relationship:
- Change the relative caps to 6:2:1 Fighters:Bombers:Frigates.
- Give Frigates AoE, i.e. turn them into Grenade Launchers, and mitigate their AoE immunity into resistance.
- Alter mechanics like targeting priorities to enable fighters to screen friendly untis of the same size (i.e. bombers).
- Reduce the omni-presence of shields, and/or make it such that, e.g., shields cannot protect units from enemies inside the bubble (thus giving them pure anti-siege roles).
- Change the AI deployment to favour bombers less. Say, some Guardposts are defended by large fighter complements (encouraging frigate use). Reduce the number of shots of anti-fighter/bomber guardposts, but make them accurate/damaging enough to OHKO those light units (encouraging fighter screening).

Offline Timerlane

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 51
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #11 on: August 31, 2016, 03:45:50 PM »
Having more variety in Core Guardpost hull types would probably help address the imbalance; I think they're almost all ultra-heavy at the moment.
IIRC, Heavy is the 'standard', and a pretty good number of them aren't: Arachnid(Polycrystal); Raid Engine, Neinzul Spawner and Booster(Neutron); CPA and Electric(Composite); Neinzul Melee(Close Combat); Missile and Zenith Bombard(Artillery). Might be more.

I know I used Acid Sprayers to take out 3-4 of the Core GPs in my last game.

Offline Draco18s

  • Resident Velociraptor
  • Core Member Mark IV
  • *****
  • Posts: 3,879
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #12 on: August 31, 2016, 04:57:33 PM »
e.g., shields cannot protect units from enemies inside the bubble (thus giving them pure anti-siege roles).

This is already true, if you'd used anti "ignores force fields" units.  The problem is that such units are the exception rather than the rule, as most units can't move inside a forcefield to begin with.

Offline zharmad

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,066
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #13 on: September 01, 2016, 02:34:11 AM »
e.g., shields cannot protect units from enemies inside the bubble (thus giving them pure anti-siege roles).

This is already true, if you'd used anti "ignores force fields" units.  The problem is that such units are the exception rather than the rule, as most units can't move inside a forcefield to begin with.

 Correct - since Chris mentioned in the mechanics-by-units doc that he would like to change the forcefield mechanics to something more streamlined, what things would improve the current mechanics?
 So I suggest: to make all units passable through forcefield and be able to damage structures inside (perhaps not at 100%?), and probably have FFs not shrink as they take damage. This means bombers are not automatically required, and players don't have to wait for them to do sufficient damage, and the FFs themselves would move towards the niche of radar-dampening* in soft-counter form.
 *Radar dampening is also one of those hard-counter properties that occur fairly often, but isn't immediately obvious to newer players.

Offline x4000

  • Chris Park, Arcen Games Founder and Lead Designer
  • Administrator
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 30,619
Re: How to address the outsized role bombers have?
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2016, 10:27:26 AM »
The new quadrangle removes this issue, happily. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!