Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

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Shaftoe
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Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby Shaftoe » 21 May 2016, 07:44

That's it. I'm sure there were tens of dozens of discussions like this one. But now I decided to say all what I think. It won't take much time. I'm not going to argue with somebody, because I honestly beleive you'll waste your time yourselves. But everything I say is what I really think, and there are reasons for me to think so. Maybe somebody else here shares my point of view. Maybe Devs will listen. We'll see.

1) Weak, weakening(?), weakest AI.

Yes, that's the problem. Solo mode, custom games and campaign AI is terribly stupid. Of course, I'm talking about the Hardest one. All others don't even deserve a word. I realize that there is not much Devs can do, but I can't play multiplayer games so often as I want. So, this problem is crucial to me. Where's the problem? AI lacks tactics and so sometimes acts inadequate. For example, in Assasinate (Attack) mod enemy fleet doesn't try to sever my forces from it's flagship, instead it's merely stalking around and shooting. Probably an escort script should help... or some sort of mobile echeloned defence.

In cruiser clash we often see enemy fleet coming in 2-3 packs, 3-4 ships per each. Mostly, you can kill 1st pack before the 2nd is ready to engage, so as 3rd (when it comes). Probably one or two big packs should look more threatening, don't you think? Also, cruisers and battleships should be prefered by AI in this mode, because frigates under AI control are totally useless.

Next one, the Blockade (Defence). When you assaulting the blockade, you may simply wait for enemy ships and then kill them all without any need in harming the platforms. Yes, it's logical, because we understand that those platforms were destroyed AFTER battle, BUT... If you'll make enemy ships to patrol platforms space instead of meaningless chasing, you may add more spice to this mode. Plus, player mines deployment and generic asteroids directly in blockade line of space could help too.

The next point is planetary assault (attack). By the way, when should we expect new types of planets for skybox? It's kinda weird to storm the same planet over and over...and over. So, in planetary assault mod we have to deal with an enemy fleet and find some time to send somebody to bomb the ground. That's fine, but I believe that 1-2 ships of enemy fleet must defend bombardment area at all times (even shielding it by their own hulls, if needed).


2) Underpowered Lances

Lances are completely useless for the Imperium and fairly medicore for Chaos (which is the weakest faction). Yes, they never miss and ignore armor, but their long cooldown and bad firepower make them a weapon you would like to change for something else as soon as possible. Gothic and Lunar are dead classes, thanks to it.
I believe, 1 lance battery (count as 1 lunar side battery of 2 overlord dorsal turrets) should have damage of 1 standard macro battery (18), but also have cooldown twice of it. And that's with armor piercing and 100% accurate traits. Then, Imperial players will consider use of Lance based strategies more often... Also, such a turn will make more people to bite their nails when they see a lance ship. Trully, the underpowered Chaos faction will win from this change more than anyone. This may be a good choice for very next patch, since devs produce them very often and I believe there are no obstalces to abort changes, if something will go wrong. After all, sometimes we must simply have faith. Because without it, all what we have are underpowered lances and dead ship classes.



3) Underpowered Nova cannon.

Comparing to torpedoes and counting Nova ships costs, I must say: "Sir, are you kidding me?".

-HIGH COST
-Insufficient Accuracy (Bad chance to hit target above 6-7k, bad possibility of taking out the target by 3-4 Nova shots, because 1-2 cannons will miss, i.e. VERY LOW efficiency comparing to torpedoes )
-Relativey low damge (can't even bust a frigate with shields from 1st shot)
-Useless in close range (because we can't go far enough to fire it at desired target, since macro cannos perfrom at best in close range and Micro Warp Jump/Gauge has long cooldown and many different situations for it).

It's not an "alternative" as it should be, it's simply broken right now.
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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby angelshard » 21 May 2016, 08:09

1) Have to agree with you on this one, I don't know how much can be done to improve actual ai, but making it focus lineships over escorts and avoid minefields would help a great deal.

2) personally I think they should just remove the 3k AP upgrade, that would make lances a lot more interesting again. (Don't know if it would help lunar though, that ship is in a bad place).

3) I don't know what should be done about this one, I agree it sucks, but you find a lot of players still loving it or calling it OP.

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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby BrianDavion » 21 May 2016, 08:40

most of the people calling it OP likely still judge it from beta.

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Shaftoe
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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby Shaftoe » 21 May 2016, 09:03

2) personally I think they should just remove the 3k AP upgrade, that would make lances a lot more interesting again. (Don't know if it would help lunar though, that ship is in a bad place).


There is no place for nerfing Lances further. Clearly. It's such an obvoius thing that it lacks damage. Wanna powerful armor-piercing 100% accurate shot? Then pay your time for it!
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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby angelshard » 21 May 2016, 09:50

Shaftoe wrote:
2) personally I think they should just remove the 3k AP upgrade, that would make lances a lot more interesting again. (Don't know if it would help lunar though, that ship is in a bad place).


There is no place for nerfing Lances further. Clearly. It's such an obvoius thing that it lacks damage. Wanna powerful armor-piercing 100% accurate shot? Then pay your time for it!


Where in my post did you get I wanted to need lances? Removing AP upgrade for macros would give them a boost, comparatively.

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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby warsinger2 » 21 May 2016, 09:55

Shaftoe wrote:
2) personally I think they should just remove the 3k AP upgrade, that would make lances a lot more interesting again. (Don't know if it would help lunar though, that ship is in a bad place).


There is no place for nerfing Lances further. Clearly. It's such an obvoius thing that it lacks damage. Wanna powerful armor-piercing 100% accurate shot? Then pay your time for it!


He meant remove the 3k AP upgrade from weapon batteries so that they can no longer ignore most armor to keep that forte for the lances.
So if you face heavy armor it makes more sense to have lance boats instead of massed weapon batteries with the AP upgrade which would make lances more worth while.

Keeping in mind the upcoming space marine DLC the 3k AP upgrade has to go anyways.

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Shaftoe
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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby Shaftoe » 21 May 2016, 09:59

warsinger2 wrote:
Shaftoe wrote:
2) personally I think they should just remove the 3k AP upgrade, that would make lances a lot more interesting again. (Don't know if it would help lunar though, that ship is in a bad place).


There is no place for nerfing Lances further. Clearly. It's such an obvoius thing that it lacks damage. Wanna powerful armor-piercing 100% accurate shot? Then pay your time for it!


He meant remove the 3k AP upgrade from weapon batteries so that they can no longer ignore most armor to keep that forte for the lances.
So if you face heavy armor it makes more sense to have lance boats instead of massed weapon batteries with the AP upgrade which would make lances more worth while.

Keeping in mind the upcoming space marine DLC the 3k AP upgrade has to go anyways.


To make myself clear:
I understand. But it won't help the situation, only ruin this way of use of macro cannons as well. Lances are long range armor piercer, so they should gain more power to be efficient. While Macro batteries demand 3k distance, which is not always possible.

The lances beg for more direct approach, as they can't even harm a frigate somehow severely. And why do you think AP will go?
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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby Bludfist » 21 May 2016, 12:41

Im sorry but i completely disagree with point 2

Lances are inferior on Imp because their base range is 6K,and the upgrade only pushes it to 9K, at that point you might as well take plasma micros with targeting matrix As a long range tool, they are inferior to other imperial options such is the nature of things due to the fact we have to build generalist fleets with limited ship slots

When tyrainds are implement though lances would make a potential comeback because the only way to beat nids is to snipe their synapse ships

Chaos lances are perfectly fine; long range, steady, sustained damage that chips away at tagets is exactly how the faction is supposed to play

Nova cannons at this point should just be considered icings on the cake even without them dominators and mars are still dang good ships, for a few more points you get a stronger brawler than tyrants and mars are good carriers that can brawl alright as well
Chaos walking into Aldorf be like
Spoiler : :
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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby MadDemiurg » 21 May 2016, 19:32

1) I kinda agree, even though I don't play AI much. Campaign was rally easy apart from some misstions with "smart" allies.

2) Lances are very powerful. Maybe not on Imp ships though. I consider Acheron to be one of the best ships in the game.

Acheron has 6 lance dps and 3 macro dps. At 3001 range vs 50 armour (just outside of AP area): 6 * 0.75 + 3 * 0.8* 0.5 = 5.7 dps.

Dominator (highest imp macro dps ship for the cost): 12 * 0.5 * 0.8 = 4.6 dps.

Acheron beats dominator at ANY range besides AP macro range (<3k). It's not difficult to stay out of 3k range (at least most of the time) with a faster ship. If you play vs AI that does not try to kite or position its ships properly AP macro builds might be the best (they deal the highest dps in their efective range after all). In real MP matches good lance ships are a pain to deal with, unless you are Eldar. Imps are more or less reliant on torps and novas to even it out.

3) Against, AI, torps are definitely more powerful, because AI does not try to dodge them much, or counter them with fighters. Against competent player, torps are much less effective (they are still far from useless though). Novas have very little counterplay, but you need to understand how to use them to deal permanent damage. It's no use if you just damage the shields and wait for nova to recharge to only see the shields regenerated. That's why you combine novas with some means to take out shields like disruption bombs or long range macro, or you mass 3-4 novas to simply break through shields. Even a glancing nova hit deals 100 damage, and they do that in a huge area. If it's hull damage, 8 hits like that are enough to take out a cruiser. Of course you won't hit with everything, but I find novas cause pretty significant damage over time vs kiting fleets if used properly. More so against Eldar who simply lack shields. Against, not so useful vs AI that does not kite and can't counter torps.

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Re: Weak AI, underpowered lances and damn broken Nova cannon

Postby Rolepgeek » 22 May 2016, 03:03

In the tabletop, 3 Firepower of macro weapons was worth about 1 Firepower of Lances. Here, 3 DPS of Macro is worth about 1 DPS of lances, in terms of what ships get. There's a reason for that. Currently, with Imperial Accuracy, a Macro weapon, attacking 50% armor, will do more damage than the equivalent Lance weapon up until 50% accuracy, aka 7.5k range. Against 75% armor, however, a macro weapon will only do as much damage as a lance, and even then only at 100% accuracy, which means locked on under 3k. Of course, the problem here is that under 3k, armor stops mattering given the way AP Rounds currently work, which tips the balance a bit too much in macro's favor. Against 25% armor, Macros only become less powerful at about 10k, where they only hit a third of the time. This, of course, ignores Eldar, who are currently always damaged more by macros than lances, right up until you hit zero accuracy, more or less(exaggerating a little, granted).

This isn't helped by the fact that most Imperial ships can bring both sides to bear with the maneuver gauge, at least for a bit. Given the ranges they fight at, and the ranges of some of their lances (unupgraded, with no skills; Tyrant>Gothic, unfortunately), this is an issue, as they'll only be useful against Orks and possibly renegade Imperial Fleets. Which might have to be their niche. Though it does mean the Lunar is even more hurt by the way it currently functions.

But, honestly, this is how they're supposed to work. Lances are not mainline weapons for the Imperium. *shrug*

Though, a note; comparing the Acheron Heavy Cruiser to the Dominator Cruiser is kind of a mismatch. Compare the Overlord instead, which has: 10*0.5*0.8 + 2*0.75= 5.5 DPS. Acheron still wins, yeah, but barely, and while it's got speed, Overlord's got prow armor. And torpedoes.

AP Macro should subtract 25 from armor, not reduce to 25. On this, I have to agree with the majority. Maybe Torpedoes too. Though it would be interesting (and maybe a bad idea) if they could reduce it below 25.


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