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A question about new EM rule
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ShockRocket
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 27 Jul 2008
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 3:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kang wrote:
You know, I'm beginning to come round to this point of view too.
You misread my post. I'm arguing against the new rule--saying that it wasn't necessary.

This isn't an "elegant solution to a problem", this is a "total change in the way EM works in the game system". This is a big deal. I'm really not happy about ADB nerfing EM and then telling us all to STFU about it or we're banned from the board. That's not how you get and keep players.
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pneumonic81
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Joined: 23 May 2008
Posts: 275
Location: Austin TX

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 4:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I want to start out by saying that hot headed and insulting posting done on this forum caused me to quit reading it. It's just a game after all, and if you get banned for resorting to insults it's time to back up and think about what your posting. Let's be adults.

To throw my 2 cents in, I have to say I agree with Mike. I have been playing SFB for about 20 years prior to fedcom and when I picked up the game many rules were different. EM seemed a lot more powerful here the in SFB, however like most people I said nothing because I assumed the devs knew what they were doing. I still believe that.

I also believed it when the andros were changed, and the x ships. Or when much changed in the Captains Edition. Change isn't a new thing, and this isn't devestating. It's just the ongoing process of balncing a live game. EM is now closer to the spirit inwhich it was originally designed years ago in SFB
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Sir Drake
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Joined: 25 Mar 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 6:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello,

I have been trying to understand what brought this change in to play since this tread started. It was said that a new tactic was found the exploited the EM rule vs. Crunch direct fire weapons. Well I couldn’t figure it out and still hadn’t figured it out in the few days before the rule was changed. The rule got changed and I could understand how the new rule changed the way that my friends and I played the game In a bad way. We lost flexibility to protect smaller ships in large fleet battles and the ability to make a crunch ship make some harder calls on when to fire (a good thing IMO). And still I did not understand why this change happened. People posted their thoughts and things got heated, but I still didn’t know what was “broken” in the original rule. This is very frustrating to me and has been bouncing around in my head for days. What was I missing? I think I might finally understand but am not sure so am posting here in hopes that Mike or Steve can help me understand.

Was the rule changed because a plasma armed ship could launch torpedoes during the launch phase of an impulse, After a direct fire ship could have a chance to do any damage back? Then on the next impulse at the end of the defensive fire phase Go to EM to mitigate damage against it self while still having torpedoes on the board or already impacted on the enemy ship?

If that is the reason for the rule change it clears up a lot for me. It seams a shame to lose a lot of the reason to have EM when the problem, If my above Idea is correct, is only with plasmas.

Thank you for your time.



Sir Drake
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Kang
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Joined: 23 Sep 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ShockRocket wrote:
You misread my post. I'm arguing against the new rule--saying that it wasn't necessary.

Oops. I have re-read your post and I see what you mean. I do apologise.
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mjwest
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Joined: 08 Oct 2006
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Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ShockRocket wrote:
I'm really not happy about ADB nerfing EM and then telling us all to STFU about it or we're banned from the board. That's not how you get and keep players.

ADB is not doing that.

If you don't like the rule. Fine, you can post that.

If you don't like the rule and want to explain why. Fine, you can post that.

If you don't like the rule and and start to insult individuals involved, that is not fine and will result in a reaction.

Keep the discussion to the rule and not the people, and no on gets banned. The person who was banned crossed the line. Apparently by a lot. (The main offense was on the legacy boards.)

For an example of the correct way to handle this, I point to Patrick Doyle's post. The entire post was on the issue, and why he views it as bad, or at least unnecessary.

For the record, your posts have been fine, too.
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pneumonic81
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another noteworthy observation. Last Tuesday we had a game and used the new EM rule. What was interesting is the Klingon used the EM announcement as a way to force his Fed opponent into firing photons far too early for fear of the +2 die roll. The Fed took the bait, hit with only 1 photon, and then got pummled a couple impulses later by a fully armed Klingon in knife fighting range.
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ShockRocket
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pneumonic81 wrote:
Another noteworthy observation. Last Tuesday we had a game and used the new EM rule. What was interesting is the Klingon used the EM announcement as a way to force his Fed opponent into firing photons far too early for fear of the +2 die roll. The Fed took the bait, hit with only 1 photon, and then got pummled a couple impulses later by a fully armed Klingon in knife fighting range.
Aces! Nerfing EM and banning The_Rock still doesn't fix the problem...
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Dal Downing
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Joined: 06 May 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Aces! Nerfing EM and banning The_Rock still doesn't fix the problem...



Rocket I don't think so. What I see from the above listed encounter is the usual learning curve. Both Payers were familar with the rule changes. The Klink announced he was going Erratic and the Feddie took the bait paid for his ticket to ride and rolled the dice. Should he have waited and just taken his chance with the +2 die shift because it may have kept the Klink out of range? Who knows what happened happened and I am sure those 2 Captians learned something new for there next encounter.

As far as Banning the Rock goes... I think people need to stop associating his Banning with his argument aginst the rule and realise it was done because he violated (pretty serverly) the rules of this community on personal conduct. He is not the Martyr of the EM Ruling, He is a victim of his own aggressivness nothing more nothing less.
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ShockRocket
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dal Downing wrote:
The Klink announced he was going Erratic and the Feddie took the bait paid for his ticket to ride and rolled the dice.
Which is about what would have happened anyway, only now it happened one Impulse earlier. I guess you could say that the Fed had more opportunity to decide whether he wanted to drive in or turn off--but I'd argue that a Fed shooting into bad odds is dumb no matter when he does it.

Again, my argument still stands--that Feds need to be aware of the odds, and if they can't maneuver away from the enemy then they shouldn't shoot into anything worse than 1-4. Jacking around with EM isn't going to change that.

The problem is that people persist in thinking of Feds as having mid-range heavy weapons (4-8 hexes) and that's just not true. Feds are Fusion Hydrans with better phasers--the "opportunity cost" of firing a photon is too high to use it with bad odds.
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mjwest
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Joined: 08 Oct 2006
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Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ShockRocket wrote:
Aces! Nerfing EM and banning The_Rock still doesn't fix the problem...

*sigh*

Absolutely and totally wrong on both accounts.

First, EM was not "nerfed". In fact, it sounds like it worked out exactly like it was supposed to.

Second, Rock was not banned because he opposed the change. He was banned for egregious personal attacks. The fact that the change was the starting point for the attacks does not change the fact that personal attacks for any reason is not permitted. He not only crossed the line, but blew way past them.

(The majority of the comments were on the other boards. For the record, I never saw them, but based on the reaction of both the moderators and others, they were pretty nasty.)
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ShockRocket
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, yes, it worked exactly like it was supposed to--but why wouldn't it have worked that same way under the old rules? There is no functional difference between "the Fed took a shot in the 1-3 bracket" and "the Fed closed into the 1-5 bracket, the Klingon declared EM, and the Fed took a shot at effectively 1-3". (the example was light on details, but I'm assuming that this was the range.) Frankly, the Fed was dumb either way--he should have held fire, which would make it a moot point as to when the Klingon went EM.

To my mind, the more meaningful information would be how the two ships maneuvered, because that's really what changes in the Fed's situation. The only time it's going to affect a (smart) Fed is when the Fed is in 1-4 or 1-5 (range 2 to 4) and thinks that he won't be able to keep up or close the range. If the Fed can keep up, then there's no problem; just hang onto the Klink, wait for him to drop EM, and then blast him. Let him turtle; you've got all day to wait for him.

*****

Could someone please point out the tactic that "broke" EM? A link, a quote, anything. This is not a difficult request.
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Archduke Russell John I
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Location: Langhorne, Pa

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I kind of agree with Shock on this one. It seems to have only changed the dynamics of when the Action/Reaction decision takes place. The original decision point was "Do I fire into the modifer or turn off and wait for a better oppurtunity" The new decision point is "do I fire at a range that I am not happy with or do I turn off and wait for a better oppurtunity."

Mike posed the change as being more inline with the Action/Reaction paradigm of the game. As I am understanding it, he sees Evasive Manuevers as the Action. I disagree. I always viewed Evasive Manuevers primarily as the reaction. I am plugging along and suddenly I realize that I made a mistake and am about to get a full alpha strike in the face. I react by going evasive to mitigate the damage I am about to receive.

Additionally, I think the it harms the Plasma chuckers way too much. I completely agree with The Rock's analysis on that. Now the Plasma Chuckers have to Launch an entire impulse earlier then previously.

Finally, I agree with those that believe this is a rules change in response to a valid tactic. There are ways to have voided the tactic without relying on a rules change. It is a Bad ruling all over.


Last edited by Archduke Russell John I on Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:59 pm; edited 1 time in total
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jmt
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What was the original tactic/loophole this change was implemented to fix?
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Archduke Russell John I
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Location: Langhorne, Pa

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it was a comment Paul Scott made over on the Legacy Board and not even an official Tac Note submission.

If I am not mistaken it was this comment;

Quote:
Actually, the Rom could do something much worse, and without committing too much plasma. Perform the approach as described above, then the impulse after launch, do all you can to force the Fed to move closer to the torps or spend power canceling. If the opponent succeeded in keeping his FA towards the Rom, then the Rom goes evasive.


Paul made this comment during the discussion of a submitted tac note. It is under the July 5, 2008 archive in the Federation Commander:Tactics thread.

[edit for spelling]
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junior
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ShockRocket wrote:
Well, yes, it worked exactly like it was supposed to--but why wouldn't it have worked that same way under the old rules? There is no functional difference between "the Fed took a shot in the 1-3 bracket" and "the Fed closed into the 1-5 bracket, the Klingon declared EM, and the Fed took a shot at effectively 1-3". (the example was light on details, but I'm assuming that this was the range.) Frankly, the Fed was dumb either way--he should have held fire, which would make it a moot point as to when the Klingon went EM.


Because the Klingon was able to bait the Fed with an EM announcement? Under the old rule that wouldn't have been possible.


There was a post on the other board that mentioned a few things that haven't been stated here.

1.) SVC said that he's actually been unsatisfied with the way that EM worked for a while, but figured that since an out and out abuse hadn't been found for it then it wasn't an issue.
2.) What was apparently the "straw that broke the camel's back", so to speak, was this tactic here -


Quote:
Cloaking trick baiting the photon.

If closing with a Federation ship while under cloak try and declare uncloaking so as to finish the following impulse at range 5. The Federation ship will then be unable to fire overloads as the range is counted as 5+4=9 you may then launch your plasma torpedoes. The Federation player has a nasty choice, eat your plasma to gain a shot with his overloads or turn away and run. If he chooses to take the damage you can wait until after his defensive fire to see whether you wish to use your phasers to support the plasma or declare evasive manoeuvers to reduce the effect of his photons. If he runs he may well have to HET especially if you have arranged a head-on pass and you may then gain a phaser and bolt shot on his rear shields.

Although range 5 is the ideal for this any range in the 5-8 bracket is likely to give a Federation ship real problems. Deciding how much plasma to launch is an issue but if the launch will force a HET I would suggest erring on the side of excess Although at it's best against the Photon this appraoch is quite useful against disruptors, hellbores and stingers.


combined with this comment on the tactic -

Quote:
Actually, the Rom could do something much worse, and without committing too much plasma. Perform the approach as described above, then the impulse after launch, do all you can to force the Fed to move closer to the torps or spend power canceling. If the opponent succeeded in keeping his FA towards the Rom, then the Rom goes evasive.

The purpose of the plasma is not to do damage per se, but to force the opponent to turn off or split his/her force so that your force is either firing phasers into the rear shields with out accepting return HW fire or it is engaging at a numerical advantage.



Regarding Fusions and EM...

Quote:
Fusions aren't that badly effected, expected damage drops by something like, what, ~11% at range 0, or ~16% at range 1. In percentage terms that is approximately the same drop in effectiveness for hellbores at the same range. Plus you are still guaranteed damage with fusion. And if you are being shot by fusions you are probably being shot by Ph-G as well, which aren't to badly effected either.


I finally ran the numbers for Fusion Beams and EM. Format is "normal damage" from six shots (non-overloaded, since overloads are an across the board damage increase and will produce roughly the same proportions) that roll 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6, followed by "EM damage" with six shots and the same die roll spread.


Range 0: 59 - 41
Range 1: 38 - 24
Range 2: 23 - 12

At range 3 and beyond, it's hard to justify using Fusion Beams even when the target isn't under EM, and there's no reason at all to use them when the target is EMing.

So in actuality, it's a lot more severe than the 11% or 16% mentioned, and you're looking at some pretty ugly numbers. Range 0 is roughly 30%. Range 1 is about 35%. And Range 2 is a loss of nearly 50% of the damage inflicted by the Fusion Beams.
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