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Cryosis
03-01-2014, 02:18 AM
So I had my green/light slots filled with crew that gave stat bonuses. I died, which killed several of them and I noticed that even though my equipment no longer met the requirements, it would remain equipped and usable.

Is this by design? It seems like this could be easily exploited if you have crew/yellow gear that has huge stat buffs.

Shadow
03-03-2014, 12:29 PM
It is by design, mostly so when you get debuffed all of your components don't stop working.

ScrObot
03-03-2014, 02:41 PM
Weapons and other active-use items require the stat requirements to be met to use. Other things like shields, thrusters, power generators, etc. just need the stat requirement met to be installed, and will still function even if the stat requirement is not met after installation.

For an analogy, the guy who installs a tank engine and treads doesn't need to ride around in the vehicle for it to work. But the gunner does need training in order to man the weapons system.

Cryosis
03-04-2014, 06:44 AM
Thanks for the response!

So if I stack crew/holo in order to equip bigger power plants, is that an expected mechanic in gameplay? Or by doing so will it make it too easy?

Tuidjy
03-04-2014, 02:09 PM
I have always thought that it was the way you are supposed to play. It's certainly the way I play. And if you think it is too easy... the sector levels go up to 200.

Or if you like pain, you can try playing with Hardcore Command Zero ships. Then you need every trick in the book to make it even to ship level 100. I have not yet.

By the way, if you add all the skill points you get over 100 levels, you end up with about 500. The biggest hull costs 460 Command points. This for me in a clear indicator that shuffling crew is intended.

laq
03-04-2014, 03:59 PM
It is by design, mostly so when you get debuffed all of your components don't stop working.

would it not be better to add some parameter to "envelope" temporary stat changes (due to buff, debuff, emp etc) and separate equip requirements to be based on current total hard stats (base + crew) with the temporary envelope ignored. Thus to have item x equipped I must have y hard stats where as my soft stat total I simply ignore for equip purposes

this would avoid the obvious exploitative nature of the current system while maintaining non total shutdowns due to combat effects

* although technically doesn't it make more sense anyway that if i disable your power supply your laser that depends on that power supply to work would no longer function ...?

@Tuidjy command with those kind of numbers for only linear ship expansion is clearly a major point of contention in the game causing a HUGE bottleneck to the strategy meta :D

Tuidjy
03-04-2014, 04:04 PM
What bottleneck? ;)

The best ships are the ones with Command 460. It's just that you really need to be great at juggling...

I've had a few ships of this kind and that was an year ago, before you could level in a relaxed manner, collect crew, and then use the Cortex's race service to turn your ship into a heavy flagship.

Shadow
03-04-2014, 04:07 PM
* although technically doesn't it make more sense anyway that if i disable your power supply your laser that depends on that power supply to work would no longer function ...?

It definitely makes sense, but some of the monsters would be really, really dangerous when they debuffed you and everything stopped working. :)

laq
03-04-2014, 04:35 PM
What bottleneck? ;)

The best ships are the ones with Command 460. It's just that you really need to be great at juggling...

I've had a few ships of this kind and that was an year ago, before you could level in a relaxed manner, collect crew, and then use the Cortex's race service to turn your ship into a heavy flagship.

not to hijack this post BUT the bottleneck is simple
-with that high a percentage of total point consumption only the MOST linear builds are even possible let alone competitive
-non "war" themed ships become IMPOSSIBLE if not nonviable
-there becomes "knifes edge" margin for error
-that tight a constraint FORCES exploit / trick using to make the most basic builds. Where as this relationship should be reversed trick/exploit using should be used to REFINE basic builds
-only the most elite and experienced players will have proper knowledge base to make proper builds making difficult learning curves (that can really hurt sales)
- *meant to say* that the pure LINEAR progression your ship equipment takes is 1 in stark contrast to the asymmetrical breadth of possibility having such a deep rpg mechanic base and large item output should imply
2 the linear equipment progression directly amplifies the other limiting factors

It definitely makes sense, but some of the monsters would be really, really dangerous when they debuffed you and everything stopped working. :)

as long as it is non tedious/monotonous really dangerous in games is synonymous (to me) to really fun and good :D as your forced to try new things adapt etc

Cryosis
03-04-2014, 07:39 PM
It definitely makes sense, but some of the monsters would be really, really dangerous when they debuffed you and everything stopped working. :)

I haven't seen any monsters that debuff basic stats (Tactical, Engineering), but couldn't you just change those to debuff the resulting stats (Damage,Fire Rate,Energy Regen,ShieldRegen... ect)?

If you did that and made it to where broken equipment still provided it's basic stat bonuses, there shouldn't be issues with having equipment no longer provide an effect if the stat pre-requisites are no longer met.

Tuidjy
03-04-2014, 08:27 PM
I am a bit lost here. When a monster hits me with a energy/speed/power/defense/etc... debuff, my ship already slows down, its weapons already stop firing, and it's already really easy to hit.

I do not understand the idea that I need to have an engineer on watch so that my shields can stay up, or a mechanic so that my armor does not evaporate.

I am one hundred percents behind having more active components (like the cloaks which force stealth ships to invest in Helm) and having any damaged component breaking more easily (or even outright) if the watch does not have the right skill.

I would also like to have more significant bonuses from base skill investment (like the Expert, Legendary, whatever gunner) because right now, with the exception of Tactical, there's nothing that stat bonuses give you that components don't do twice as well at half the cost.

But I most certainly don't understand the drive for crippling passive components with unmet stat requirement. You will make crew meaningless, you will have to increase the skill points per level, decrease the hull costs... and for what?

Seriously, what is the effect we are looking for here? If we want to differentiate ship builds, we should be looking into HULLS. Slower hulls, hulls that cannot turn well, hulls that cannot mount armor, hulls that repair automatically, etc...

You cannot stay realistic, and make ships without Engineering, or Tactical, or Helm. If you try to change the rules about passive components, you will create a lot of work, wreck balance for a while, and at the end, you will end up, balance wise, exactly where you started.

Cryosis
03-04-2014, 09:06 PM
I do not understand the idea that I need to have an engineer on watch so that my shields can stay up, or a mechanic so that my armor does not evaporate.

While that is true the the mechanic does make "sense" in real life terms, anyone who has played an rpg with items with stat pre-reqs will be used to this. New players won't know it exists as it's not part of a tutorial and there is no visual mechanic that says "hey, you can do this".

I would also like to have more significant bonuses from base skill investment (like the Expert, Legendary, whatever gunner) because right now, with the exception of Tactical, there's nothing that stat bonuses give you that components don't do twice as well at half the cost.

I agree to an extent, they could all use some % scaling instead of flat scaling like gunner/programmer.

Seriously, what is the effect we are looking for here? If we want to differentiate ship builds, we should be looking into HULLS. Slower hulls, hulls that cannot turn well, hulls that cannot mount armor, hulls that repair automatically, etc...

While this is a staple mechanic in other space rpg games, I feel that the stat division in this game differentiates your builds pretty easily. I find that I don't put points in every stat.

If my build doesn't use targeted weapons, I put no points in computers
If my build doesn't use armor, I put no points in structural
Obviously I will need points in tactical and engineering and at least some in helm.

This means the stats/pre-reqs are just unbalanced a little. (There could be more weapons that do not require a high tactical stat to use, (fighters could use engineering, debuffs would use computers,)). This would allow play without 100% needing to put points in tactical.

You cannot stay realistic, and make ships without Engineering, or Tactical, or Helm. If you try to change the rules about passive components, you will create a lot of work, wreck balance for a while, and at the end, you will end up, balance wise, exactly where you started.

I'm not sure what you are trying to say here. It sounds like "and correct me if I'm wrong Shadow" That the current mechanic for being able to use components you do not have the pre-reqs for is a side effect to alleviate other broken gameplay issues with debuffs.

In all fairness I don't have a ship past level 40, so there might be something I'm missing.

laq
03-04-2014, 09:25 PM
@Tuidjy & Cryosis

I believe you guys are missing what the original question was :p

So I had my green/light slots filled with crew that gave stat bonuses. I died, which killed several of them and I noticed that even though my equipment no longer met the requirements, it would remain equipped and usable.

Is this by design? It seems like this could be easily exploited if you have crew/yellow gear that has huge stat buffs.

It is by design, mostly so when you get debuffed all of your components don't stop working.

Eg Equip X requires 10 helm
my base helm is 7 and i have a crew that gives me +3 helm
base7 + crew3 = 10 total so i can equip item X and do
...
something happens that while i have item X equipped something kills/changes my crew
now base7 + crew0 = 7 i no longer SHOULD be able to equip X
BUT the game currently does not unequip item X
Shadow pointed out this is on purpose to make sure that if something happens to debuff you all your items don't unequip

problem is you can temporary artificially raise stats to equip items and negate requirements

I suggested simply take your (base stat + crew) call it your hard stat
make equip checks use only your hard stat.
make your hard stat + temporary changes from buffs/debuffs call it your soft or liquid stat make all combat mechanics chance to hit dmg etc use your soft stat the end
you now do both things while removing the danger/exploit of the current equip checks :)

Cryosis
03-04-2014, 10:19 PM
laq, yes that would be the fix for it. It has kind of derailed into a discussion of "why change how this works?".

laq
03-04-2014, 10:31 PM
laq, yes that would be the fix for it. It has kind of derailed into a discussion of "why change how this works?".

in it's current state it's a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation
between monotonous danger / easy exploit
plus it is currently counter intuitive to almost every other rpg variant people have ever played :D

edit - added full quote as i really didn't mean anything negative :) least of all taking you out of context ;)

Cryosis
03-05-2014, 12:45 AM
Iaq, you quoted me a little out of context.

Tuidjy is supporting the current mechanics, I was providing counterpoints to his argument.

I would agree it's a damned if you do damned if you don't right now. I was going to list a few things regarding balance but I don't want to derail this again.

laq
03-05-2014, 01:25 AM
there is not much nitty gritty to argue about balance on this point (imo:p) they either fix it or they don't especially with such easy solutions
i guess the "balance" ramifications in single player are just never enough to justify getting things exactly right

however

remember that this game is set to have multi player and I'm assuming pvp which if it were done right now would look terrifyingly bland
I believe the meta would instantly digress into the following
-level to 100 spend 460 of 500 points just to max ship
-spend my remaining whopping 40 points on an extremely thin variety of viable options
-finally finish with this exploit ie ARTIFICIALLY STUFF the best components
you can that will work after breaking it's requirement
-allowing me to spend as much of my overabundant 40 points into
basically the one stat the game has left relevant at this point being tactical...

Tuidjy
03-05-2014, 02:21 PM
You have described the way to arrive at about half of the most powerful builds... but this is where the customization begins, not end! You could have 10 ships that are designed the way you describe 460Command/45+ Tactical, and they could have nothing in common beyond that. You could have a one-shotter armed with a Big Bang and half a dozen capacitors, a beam battery, a long range missile platform, a unaimed area-effect ship, etc...

By the way, even if you completely removed any passive components, up to making them break the second you stop meeting the requirements, most of the best ships would STILL be 460 Command/45+ Tactical. This is a problem of the hull design, not the passive/active mechanism, which by the way I think is awesome. (I bet that did not surprise anyone)

As for PvP, I really wonder how that would turn out. In any case, without changes to the existing rules, the best PvP ship would NOT be a 460 Command.

laq
03-05-2014, 05:41 PM
hi again
most of what i have said in this forum are not super general statements about the game but about the topic of the forum "certain items remaining equipped and functional when base stats no longer meet minimum requirements" just for ultimate clarity :D

first your describing "variations"
good multiplayer, specifically PVP needs good "diversity"
variation - same core's with differing specifics
diversity - different core's all similarly viable
right now at best you would get the first; everyone basically the same with different specifics

as you know Tuidjy i agree with you on your overall statements about the game as your one of the few people to actually read my suggestion thread

right now the game has no action component to the combat gameplay
everything is absract rpg. Right now grid turn base would be a better presentation. The top down 2d space flying is MARGINAL and non-impacting

I often don't move in fights (especially while grinding) as with most rpg i only really wanna pick fights i can win quick and easy so i sit there and just click auto kill click auto kill

in my suggestion thread ( though long ) i gave many examples of how another current 2d top down space sim has excellent examples of ways to add the much needed dynamic action components to the movement and the combat.

and in reguards to the specific talks about command and the need for hull variation i quote (vainly) my section on exactly this


Command and Ship equip slots:

I will make no right - wrong statement but I will say this the vanilla system is a huge bottleneck on the possible breadth of strategy your excellent stats and item variation's
should allow

Reasons - the depth to stats and items combinations is asymmetrical witch is awesome. I can be much stronger in x by sacrificing most of y I can stack stats and equips to super specialize
however my ship growth is exactly linear this is very boring in contrast to the wild variation in the strategy that plug into your ship

Simple solution - different ship layouts instead of 3/3/3 -3/3/4-3/4/4/...etc Offer non linear ship diversity in 1 of two forms either make a huge library of different ships
(possibly even by race should your choose) with ship acquisitions requiring X command ,maybe with y other stats,and purchased
OR
Make the layout of your ship a point based system
allowing you to choose how many of what size compartments you want ( this might require adding some extra smaller weapons packages to your excellent item depths )

svartberg
03-17-2014, 11:26 AM
It definitely makes sense, but some of the monsters would be really, really dangerous when they debuffed you and everything stopped working. :)

I think he meant storing multiple variables per skill
Base Skill level
+ Crew/Component Skill Bonus
+ buffs/debuffs

So a component requirement only checks first two, ignoring and debuffs.
Then if you unequip the needed crew member, the component becomes "deactivated".

Red-XIII
01-05-2015, 07:06 PM
This mechanic exploit has been bugging me for a while, though I used to dismiss it as exploit, and was expecting it to be ignorable as any other exploit should be (if not removed, that is).

Now this thread have finally pushed me over the worried limit. It's shouldn't be a standard practice to use an exploit. It's bad enough that it exists, but the game should be AT LEAST built around the idea of NOT using it.

Ships for 460 points out of 500 are definitely NOT there for exploitless gameplay.

I hope that the developers will address this. It's not even THAT hard to deal with either.

First, to deal with the "core" of the problem.

This'll probably be the most work-heavy part.

Implement a downscaling debuff that reduces the core efficiency of a module (armour for armour plating, damage for weapons, shield strength and shield regen for shields etc.) as long as it's requirements are not met.


used_component_stat = base_component_stat * Min{(((ships_current_CP - component_CP_requirement)*scaling_const_1 + component_CP_requirement) / component_CP_requirement) , 1}


This method means that a ship using crew (or crew modules) as a supplement to it's base abilities would only be slightly harmed by having it's crew disabled (which it should be, shouldn't it?), but a ship trying to "crewswap" it's way "from nothing to high level modules" will not be getting more than what it's "natural" crew points would allow it.

After this you might as well stop the equipment restrictions altogether. Which gets me to an optional derail. A natural evolution of this concept, which I'm not really suggesting, just mentioning while we're at it, would be to allow the module efficiency to scale upwards as well.


used_component_stat = base_component_stat * Min{(((ships_current_CP - component_CP_requirement)*scaling_const_1 + component_CP_requirement) / component_CP_requirement) , 1} * Max{(((ships_current_CP - component_CP_requirement)*scaling_const_2 + component_CP_requirement) / component_CP_requirement) , 1}


In which case what used to be equipment requirement transforms into equipments "complexity level" indicating an proximate "skill" level of a specialist required to effectively and efficiently handle this piece of equipment. Corresponding to the fact that an under-skilled specialist could still try to handle and maintain it, but the result would lack effectiveness due to not being able to maintain the module in proper condition or operate it properly, while an over-skilled specialist could provide better handling (or "overclock" it, or reinforce the critical spot in the plating) and subsequently stronger effect, but would still be better off handling a more complex module.

But going that far would probably require extra balanceing, and we don't really need to go that far anyway. Just downscaling should be enough.

If it's too hard to implement on component level, a general debuff (something similar to the current debuff we get for going over the power limit) should do the trick too.


Debuff_percentage = Max{(CP_total_required - CP_total), 0} / CP_total_required

Were CP_total_required is the sum of the highest requirements of all the existing types among all the fitted modules and CP total is the sum of all the CP allocated to CP types used by requirements. Important part here is that CP used on command should NOT help against the downscaling. The Idea is that going 10% below the total requirements should equally debuff a ship that goes for less of better modules (low command) and a ship that goes for more of worse modules (high command), however a ship that has lost 20 out of 100 tactics that has other requirements at 50s shouldn't be penalised the same as a ship that has lost 20 out of 100 tactics while keeping the other requirements at 100s. So we count all the CP types that are used for requirements as a reference to the ships "module tier" including the ones that have their requirements met, but do not count the command, as it doesn't actually represent the quality of the modules, only the quantity.

Second, once the exploit itself has been dealt with, we will need to deal with the game balance itself. And the easiest way to do that would be to increase the number of crew points per level (and, maybe, some command requirements tweaking is due along with it), to compensate for the impact that the exploit had on the balance. It's not a 1 for 1 trade-off, obviously, as the added crew points also mean added stats (such as damage from tactics), so this WILL need some extra balancing to get the rates right, and/or to tweak the stats, but I believe that it's easier than to rebalance the whole CP requirement table (along with command requirements) for exploitless gameplay.

And if anyone is wondering "why not just leave it alone and accept it as a part of the game" the answer is:

First - because it's too inconvenient to be accepted as a gameplay mechanic. Swapping crew around every time you need to equip a module is by itself crazy enough to warrant a need to dispose of this mechanic.

Second - because it's too counter-intuitive to be accepted as a mechanic.

Third - because there should really be a balance between going for better modules VS going for more modules, and that balance can only rely on ONE CP requirement table. You can't make it balanced for the ships that don't "crewswap", and for the ones that do, both at the same time. Point is - a point of CP "redirected" from command to modules or the other way around does not have the same "worth" for a ship that relies on 500 total crewpoints as it does for a ship that relies on "fake" points effectively brining it's limit over 500 and it's "module tier" above what's normal for the same amount of CP left for modules. So, deciding to go for less modules without exploits means a lot more for your "module tier" than it does with the exploit.

The way I see it, the game should let the player decide which CP types to get above average, and which ones to get below average. So both the module requirements and the "command" requirements should end at "somewhat unreasonably high looking levels". AND at the same time it should balance these decisions in a way that, while not guaranteeing effectiveness of every possible combination, should guarantee that ALL possible CP types can receive more focus or less focus without making the ship steer far from "competing builds" in efficiency.

In other words if there's a type of CP presented to player, be it tactics or command or structure, the player should be able to redirect at least some points from that CP type to a different type, or from a different one to this one without falling behind the best builds. Doesn't have to be ANY type, but has to be at least one build per CP type "direction", should be on the same level of balance as all the other efficient buids, IE at least one build with decreased "tactics" and at least one with increased "tactics".

This is what proper balance is about, and this is something that "crewswapping" exploit stands in the way of.

FDru
01-07-2015, 06:50 AM
I'm not really too bothered by the "exploity" nature of stat swapping. What I find a turnoff is that command/ship slots are so overpowered compared to everything else.

I also don't like the fact that I need to dump stat points into something to get a better hull, especially when those stat points do nothing the majority of the time (don't get me started on levels where you lose speed and defense and don't get a slot, and get some trivial amount of structure instead, come on everybody knows that is a terrible deal). And after that... the fact that I have no choice but to use that hull (or a heavier one).

Let's just look at what you get for, say... 50 points into Tactical. 50% damage? Okay. At what point do modules stop giving weapon damage? 200%? 100% for dual weapon damage + shield modules? Is there any question over which is a better use of stat points?

What is the cap of defense penalty for the hull? Almost 900? What is the cap for modules that give defense? Twice that? Again is there any question over which is the better use of stat points?

I don't like this kind of choice because it's a non-choice. You know you're gimping yourself for some short-term benefit if you choose anything but a larger hull.

And hey sometimes I just don't want to have a larger hull because they don't look as good? Where is my choice there?

What I'd like better is if the command stat was simply done away with, the other stats rebalanced somewhat and hulls to drop as items. The hull should get better naturally with leveling. I know it's way too late for this to happen, and that kind of thing probably isn't possible with mods... but it's probably my one wish for this game, because the current leveling progression just feels un-fun.

Red-XIII
01-08-2015, 04:06 PM
50 points in tactical gives you a lot more than 50% damage. It moves you nearly 1/3 of the way through the weapon module progression (assuming that there IS 1/3 of the way left to travel before you start counting).

And the caps you are talking about, you'll never reach them if you dump all your points in command.

...Or at least that's how it's supposed to work if you use the proper requirement mechanics. Which the game doesn't actually enforce...

Half the point of getting rid of that exploit is making module requirements an important part of the balance.

Tuidjy
01-08-2015, 04:46 PM
A couple of points.

1) No one is forced to max out Command or use components if his ship does not have the necessary requirements. As a matter of fact, I have taken a hardcore ship to level 100 without increasing Command at all, and while maintaining prerequisites at all time.

2) Even if you max out Command, you can still use all of the components without having to juggle crew. It is trivial to have Command 460 and 150+ in all stats - I've seen neural interfaces that increase stats by a combined total of more than 150 and generalist crew members that increase stats by a combined total of more than 100.

3) I also agree that the game would be better if component requirements were enforced, but before this can be done, a few changes may be beneficiary:
- remove Command as a stat, and unlock hulls as a function of level
- reduce the number of hulls from 30 to 10
- make hulls much more different from each other, much varied maximum speed, maneuverability, structure, and numbers of slots that does not necessarily increase together or linearly.
- allow the player to choose a new hull for every sector, and pay for a different one at the home gate, if he wishes to do so
- improve the rewards from increasing stats
- introduce modifiers/chips that reduce component requirements