Author Topic: The "problem" with the AI reduction set-of-4 thing  (Read 490 times)

Offline kmunoz

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The "problem" with the AI reduction set-of-4 thing
« on: October 05, 2020, 07:32:40 PM »
I cannot for the life of me remember the name of these things, though I just finished playing.

Anyway... they're the installations that add AIP each but knock it down by a much bigger amount if you kill all four (effectively giving you -40 AIP).

Two things that are, I'm sure, completely intended behavior, but which make destroying them unhelpful/Very Bad:

1) As you destroy each of them, your AIP goes up incrementally, which might bring your AI Mark level up by one (especially if it's at 0 or 1) before you've killed all four. Since Mark level doesn't decrease when AIP goes down, you've just shot yourself in the foot, since changes in Mark level are much more impactful than a meager 40 AIP.

2) If you're down at the floor of your AIP, destroying all four centers will actually INCREASE your current AIP, because total AIP goes up with each kill until you've hit all 4 (and the AIP floor goes up when your total AIP goes up). Since it's not possible to murder all 4 of them on the exact same frame, you WILL gain total AIP and floor AIP no matter what.

I'm sure this is intended behavior. But it's both a) annoying and b) not mentioned in any tool tips. (Not sure how easy it would be to explain the problem in a tool tip...)

I suppose I could knock out some math and get a real answer to my hypothesis, but I SUSPECT that there are very few circumstances in which knocking out the 4 centers is a Good Idea. Most of the time it's just going to bite you in the ass, at the very least because of the AIP floor increase. No matter what, your floor is going to go up. Not a fan of that.

Suggested solution: once you kill all 4 centers, both your current AIP and your total AIP go down by (net) 40, and ideally your mark level goes down if you go back under the threshold.

Otherwise it just seems to be a gameplay element that is best honored in the avoidance.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2020, 07:42:59 PM by kmunoz »

Offline tadrinth

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Re: The "problem" with the AI reduction set-of-4 thing
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2020, 08:18:26 PM »
Co-processors.

If your reduction is past your floor, you can take planets at a 2/3rd AIP discount, though.  If your AIP is at 0 with reductions and the floor is at 40, and you take a planet, your AIP goes up to 20 with reductions and your floor goes up to 47. 

I do think they could be adjusted back to their AIWC value, where the first three were 20 AIP, but the last one did NOT give +20 AIP and instead gave a whopping -120 AIP.  That's a net -60 AIP for +20 floor, enough to be worth it under almost all circumstances.

Now, IIRC they all give +20 AIP and still only give -120 AIP, so it's +27 floor and only -40 AIP.

It is intended, I think, that many of the AIP reducers also increase your floor so that you aren't obligated to take them all. 


Offline Lord Of Nothing

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Re: The "problem" with the AI reduction set-of-4 thing
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2020, 05:27:27 AM »
I think the fact that floor is based on AI difficulty level doesn't help, too. Don't get me wrong, I like it in most cases, but it's effect on the coprocessor is really harsh.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2020, 05:29:03 AM by Lord Of Nothing »

Offline tadrinth

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Re: The "problem" with the AI reduction set-of-4 thing
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2020, 03:42:50 PM »
Jeez, I'd missed that AIP floor scaled with difficulty again. 

Yeah, given how hard it's likely to be to get to all four coprocessors on diff 10, +40 floor for -40 AIP is a kick in the teeth.  Especially terrible in comparison to the Superterminal which I don't think increases your floor like it did in AIWC. 

Easiest change might be to make them +15 AIP on death, so that they're +20-30 floor and -60 net AIP.   

Offline Democracy? Democracy!

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Re: The "problem" with the AI reduction set-of-4 thing
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2020, 08:27:00 PM »
Jeez, I'd missed that AIP floor scaled with difficulty again. 

Yeah, given how hard it's likely to be to get to all four coprocessors on diff 10, +40 floor for -40 AIP is a kick in the teeth.  Especially terrible in comparison to the Superterminal which I don't think increases your floor like it did in AIWC. 

Easiest change might be to make them +15 AIP on death, so that they're +20-30 floor and -60 net AIP.

But they already have a -60 net aip. The first 3 co processors are +60 aip. The fourth one you kill applies -140 aip first, then +20 aip. 140 - 80 = 60.  IMO Co processors are for high AIP playstyle, so you can use the aip reduction more effectively. More bang for your buck so to speak. Don't know how you folks play but i always end up hunting down the co processors.

Offline kmunoz

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Re: The "problem" with the AI reduction set-of-4 thing
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2020, 10:28:43 PM »
You're right, it's -60, math is hard.

But it could be -60 or -160 or -160000, and as long as the AIP floor goes *up* when you're done, it serves no purpose to kill the co-processors and actively harms you. That's the thing I would change. (Well, that and the less common situation of mark level going up permanently.)

Except at low difficulty (no higher than 4 - I discovered the issue at diff 5), there doesn't seem to be any reason to go after the co-processors if you're keeping your AIP low or near the floor already. But if you're the sort of player who's keeping your AIP low or at floor, the co-processors *should* be part of your game plan. They're thematically exactly what that kind of player would want to target. And yet they're worthless.

 

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