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Romulan Vulture/King Vulture point value too low?
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The_Rock
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Joined: 16 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 12:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lee,
Just so you have this in mind, I do not play the Feds as a "close and crunch." I also do not think that is the best way to play them.

The Fed's best game is Range 8. If you open up the map, or even just make it larger, it will be an even better game for them. Likewise for the Orions.

Once you get in close, the difference between a photon and a disruptor diminishes.

Just think about the damage exchange between a typical fleet - one has 12 Photons and the other has 12 disrutors - we'll pretend they have equal phaser 1s - say a typical amount of 16 in arc.

The Photon player can legitimately target 2 ships at range 8, and have a reasonable expectation of doing significant internals to both of them, if it prefers a riskier game (you get approximately a 70% chance of doing at least 30 internals to both targeted ships - assuming a three cruiser opponent) . Alternatively, if greater certainty is desired or if the opponent brought along a DN or BCH, the Photon player can target one one ship and be almost completely certain of it's destruction or near destruction.

The Disruptor ships just can't do this. With 12 Disruptors and 16 p-1s, you have to target it all on one ship and even then you only have about a 60% chance of having 8 of 12 Disruptors hit. Depending on your luck of the order in which these hit, you could easily end up with the opponent ship getting to re-enforce twice. Your expectations are limited to a ship with 20ish internals, 35ish if you are very lucky. Plus, since to do that you were moving 16 and they were moving 24, they do get to run, at least for the remainder of that turn.

If you happen to be engaging Orions instead of Feds, your odds went far south because of the stealth modifier on that initial engagement.

That is the photon issue. Not that it is good at closing and crunching, but rather that it is good at staying away and crunching.
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storeylf
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 2:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Question of degrees, range 8 with full overload photons is pretty close and crunchy. Maybe we use it in slightly different contexts, by close I mean going for overload range. The optimal range within that bracket may vary, but they are all doing one thing - closing with you to get to that range where they deliver overwhelming crunch in one single volley. There is nothing you can meaningfully do on the small map to avoid the close and crunch empires via manouvering, so for the most part the only way to compete on the current tourney map is to be able to do the same thing better.
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The_Rock
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 2:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is nothing you can meaningfully do on any map under the Fed Com rules if your goal is to forever stay out of Range 8, other than just run.

If your vision of an enjoyable tournament game is one where the Klingons get off repeated range 25 shots, that is just not sustainable in an environment where games must end reasonably in three hours.
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 3:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Range 15, actually. The point for the Klingons is to stay at range 9-15 from a Fed ship/squadron with overloaded photons. Can't do that on a 42x30 map. (Which, of course, you simply have to know. So, why the dismissive reference to a range you know is nonsense?)

Also, that the Klingons would have problems should not be surprising considering all of the spiffy crap the TD7 has to get to be competitive in the SFB tournament. I imagine it is only worse with multiple ships and no spiffy gadgets.
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The_Rock
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 3:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Range 9-15 is not sustainable at any sized map, that is why I used 25 (because 9-25 can be sustained for a long time). If your first shot is at (or close to) 15, you will lose several hexes manuevering away such that, unless the Fed is very bad, your best case scenario (and it is unlikely at that, barring an HET), is 1 more 9-15 shot.

The Klingons can do that on the current map and making it bigger would not change things.

On a large map (or open map) they can change this up by using ONLY those ships with FH+L and FH+R disruptors, but

1. Lee was talking about his desire to see some non-optimal ships, and for the Klinks that means seeing some D7s and D7C, etc, not only ever using C7, D5(D5W) and F5W; and

2. Even then, you only get one shot with all your disruptors. After that, unless the Fed is very bad, you will end up with approximately 3-4 shots with half your disruptors (5 for that particular fleet), which, again, I don't see as being terribly significant.

IF you have the C7, D5W, F5W or a 2D5W, 1 D5 fleet AND you have an open map, then sure, you can get a few extra turns where you get to fire a few disruptors from 9-15.

I don't see that as being significant, but at least as importantly, I don't see that as a game that is reasonably playable on a three-hour time limit. You are looking at a game where you do not envision anything other than some minor shield damage for at least 4 turns.

That is not a tournament friendly scenario. It works great as a casual or competitive game between some friends who aren't pressed for time, but that style of play just won't function in a typical tournament.

And Mike, I completely agree with you about the Klingons being weaker in Fed Com. They are basically Kzinti's with half the drones. I'd like to see the UIM added to Fed Com as a Klingon only device. And I'd like the UIM to be the SFB Tournament UIM (no possibility of burn out), or if you need to add a burn-out rule do so but have the only effect be that the UIM is no longer usable. But I don't think, at least for the tournament, that their problem is that they can't stay at 9-15 for many many turns, since that just would not make for a good tournament.
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storeylf
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

1. Lee was talking about his desire to see some non-optimal ships, and for the Klinks that means seeing some D7s and D7C, etc, not only ever using C7, D5(D5W) and F5W; and


Not sure where you got that from, I mentioned giving the close and crunch empres like Fed, Hydran, Lyran the less min/maxed stock squadron given they start on their ideal map, but the likes of klingons their best ships as a way of using stock squadrons to balance things out a bit more. But that was talking about stock squardons.

When I was talking about the Gorn BC and 'classic' cruisers I was talking about FC generally not the tourney.

So no, I wasn't expecting the klingons to turn up with less than optimal ships necessarily.

The_Rock wrote:
Range 9-15 is not sustainable at any sized map, that is why I used 25 (because 9-25 can be sustained for a long time). If your first shot is at (or close to) 15, you will lose several hexes manuevering away such that, unless the Fed is very bad, your best case scenario (and it is unlikely at that, barring an HET), is 1 more 9-15 shot.

The Klingons can do that on the current map and making it bigger would not change things.

On a large map (or open map) they can change this up by using ONLY those ships with FH+L and FH+R disruptors, but

2. Even then, you only get one shot with all your disruptors. After that, unless the Fed is very bad, you will end up with approximately 3-4 shots with half your disruptors (5 for that particular fleet), which, again, I don't see as being terribly significant.

IF you have the C7, D5W, F5W or a 2D5W, 1 D5 fleet AND you have an open map, then sure, you can get a few extra turns where you get to fire a few disruptors from 9-15.

I don't see that as being significant, but at least as importantly, I don't see that as a game that is reasonably playable on a three-hour time limit. You are looking at a game where you do not envision anything other than some minor shield damage for at least 4 turns.

That is not a tournament friendly scenario. It works great as a casual or competitive game between some friends who aren't pressed for time, but that style of play just won't function in a typical tournament.


They can maintain 9-15 for a good while, or as you say 9-25 for a long while. Though it would require a huge/floating map. The shield damage builds up, and will eventaully beat the Fed holding overloads.

As others noted in the discussion about adding extra turns to the online tourney those sorts of turns do go a bit quicker, but you are right that if time is critical it may not be the best tourney matchup. Though whether 3 hours is the limit or not? - online makes it easier to have a longer game, and the current 10 turn limit is probably going to go over any such time if it went the full 10 turns.

I can see the problem of having too large a map, be it balancing to everyone or the potential for time issues to affect its viability. That is why I'm more in favor of different terrain per game, it offers the potential to balance things out a little (though I don't say it would be some magic wand that fixes everything) whilst also offering some different challenges. Terrain could easily be used in combination with stock squadrons or any other balancing method.

Quote:
But I don't think, at least for the tournament, that their problem is that they can't stay at 9-15 for many many turns, since that just would not make for a good tournament.


That is probably the crux, if you are looking at coming up with a format that stops some empires actually doing what they do best, and allows others to never worry about their weakness (range/power) then I don't really see how you get balance without just ensuring that everyone has the fire/staying power to do the overload range and alpha, which gets boring when that it is basically all that happens.


Last edited by storeylf on Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:53 am; edited 3 times in total
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The_Rock
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Joined: 16 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

storeylf wrote:

That is why I'm more in favor of different terrain per game, it offers the potential to balance things out a little (though I don't say it would be some magic wand that fixes everything) whilst also offering some different challenges. Terrain could easily be used in combination with stock squadrons or any other balancing method


This is, to me, one of the most intriguing ideas. I am just not sure how to make it work, but I think it has real merit to explore. If it can be worked out and is more than just a crap shoot on balance for any one game, I'd love this to be the future.

storeylf wrote:

That is probably the crux, if you are looking at coming up with a format that stops some empires actually doing what they do best, and allows others to never worry about their weakness (range/power) then I don't really see how you get balance without just ensuring that everyone has the fire/staying power to do the overload range and alpha, which gets boring when that it is basically all that happens.


I completely get what you are saying. Really my only response is to point toward the SFB tournament format, which is incredibly rich in tactics and very very well balanced, in-spite of having what would seem to be exactly the same problems you note. It might be that this sort of balanced but tactically rich environment is impossible to reach in Fed Com, but at the moment I am choosing not to believe that. It took decades of play and changes with at times hundreds of very active players to get the SFB tournament to where it is today.
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The_Rock wrote:
I'd like to see the UIM added to Fed Com as a Klingon only device. And I'd like the UIM to be the SFB Tournament UIM (no possibility of burn out), or if you need to add a burn-out rule do so but have the only effect be that the UIM is no longer usable.

Well, unless UIM is only for overloads, I would insist on some form of Prox for the Feds, too. As it is, the photon is only useful within 12 hexes. Giving the Klingons a weapon with increased usability out to 22 hexes while the Fed is restricted to just 12 hexes isn't good. Even if that means changing the 13-25 photon into a permanent prox is better than nothing.

Now, if you want the UIM for only the tournament, then I am more willing to listen. But thus far Steve has totally resisted anything that is tournament-only. However, for general use when totally free floating maps are so common, no.

Quote:
But I don't think, at least for the tournament, that their problem is that they can't stay at 9-15 for many many turns, since that just would not make for a good tournament.

Oh, I agree that having a ship running around for hours on end plinking away for turn after turn after turn isn't much fun. But, that is how many people seem to want to play.
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The_Rock
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Joined: 16 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mjwest wrote:

Well, unless UIM is only for overloads, I would insist on some form of Prox for the Feds, too.


I'd argue that the that the photon is only good within range 8, but at that range it is the best weapon in the game.

As for Prox photons, I'd be all for a set of Prox photon rules. Any rule that allows a player to make a bad choice is a good rule.

EDIT: I am referring here to the tournament or other general play situations. There are extremely limited situations (usually attacking a well armed, but stationary or very slow target - such as a base or a monitor - with a large number of ships) that prox photons actually make sense.
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The_Rock
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 5:11 pm    Post subject: Also, people generally overate Prox phtons at 13+ Reply with quote

Here are the (non-cumulative) odds:

Code:
Damage    Prox   Std
32         0      0
24         0      2
16         6     12
12        25      0
8         38     38
4         25      0
0          6     48



So what a prox photon actually does is exchange a 8% of doing 16+ for a 25% chance to do 12. Sometimes that is worth it, but often it is not. You need to have a lot (24+ against a base) to make the exchange worthwhile. Otherwise you fail to hit relevant thresholds and you are better off with a more binary (all or nothing) approach.


Last edited by The_Rock on Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:03 pm; edited 2 times in total
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mojo jojo
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 12 column for proximities is wrong. It should be 25%, same as the 4 column.

Given different terrain for each round, I think Tholians with WC would dominate. They're already decent in open, and having other terrain plays to the WC strength.

On a completely open map, Andros can probably dominate since they'll always have time and space to dissipate damage. It would be a long boring game that will never finish in any reasonable time limit, but they should beat just about anyone.
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storeylf
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thoilans are unlikely to dominate. They are ok on an open map, Nebula neuters them, and they have an interesting time around black holes. Asteroids is really the only place they are really nasty. So they pretty much go as I was suggesting, albeit very extreme, they get 1 extremely favourable terrain and 1 extremely unfavourable terrain.

Whether andros dominate or not will depend very much on the squadron. There are 2 legal andro squads at the moment, neither are that good. Andros are just not that good in a multi ship environment. The targeted andro dies horribly whilst the other ships run out of energy and struggle to go anywhere. They lack the killing power to gain a big enough edge to make up for the impending energy crisis that the the remaining ships will be facing. Having an open map is not much good if the enemy is faster than you. They do have some nice tricks, but they are not particularly overpowering.
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The_Rock
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mojo jojo wrote:
The 12 column for proximities is wrong. It should be 25%, same as the 4 column.


Yup. I had originally done the chart as a cumulative %. It is now fixed.
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The_Rock
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

storeylf wrote:
Thoilans are unlikely to dominate. They are ok on an open map...


Tholians are, as in SFB, very very good on a map with no terrain (what I assume you mean by "open map") if they are captained by someone who knows what to do with the web caster. This is, however, a very high learning curve. Probably more than any other part of the game.
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mojo jojo
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

storeylf wrote:
Thoilans are unlikely to dominate. They are ok on an open map, Nebula neuters them, and they have an interesting time around black holes. Asteroids is really the only place they are really nasty. So they pretty much go as I was suggesting, albeit very extreme, they get 1 extremely favourable terrain and 1 extremely unfavourable terrain.


Does the Nebula and Asteroids cover the whole board?



storeylf wrote:

Whether andros dominate or not will depend very much on the squadron. There are 2 legal andro squads at the moment, neither are that good. Andros are just not that good in a multi ship environment. The targeted andro dies horribly whilst the other ships run out of energy and struggle to go anywhere. They lack the killing power to gain a big enough edge to make up for the impending energy crisis that the the remaining ships will be facing. Having an open map is not much good if the enemy is faster than you. They do have some nice tricks, but they are not particularly overpowering.


Andros don't really have an energy crunch if they don't fire weapons. On their dissipate turns, all they need to do is run and arm PA panels and Displacement Devices. With 2 DDs, it's pretty much impossible for an enemy to catch them or inflict damage faster than it can be dissipated.

An Int pays 7 for PA panels, 2-4 for DDs, and 24 for speed. It still has 5-7 left for accelerations if needed without dipping into batteries and it should have a good battery reserve since some energy is being diverted there from PA panels during the runaway turns. If its batteries are near full as is likely to be the case in the first few turns, it can even fire away using its LS/RS TRH beams during the pursuit.

As I said, it's likely to be a long boring game, but any shield damage it inflicts is likely to linger while PA damage can be dissipated over an open map.
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