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    A Manifesto on the Relationship Between Fighters, Titans and AI

    Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Yetimania, Jun 24, 2014.

    ?

    What do you think about my ideas?

    1. I totally agree

      88.0%
    2. I agree somewhat (Please post to explain)

      8.1%
    3. I disagree with your assumptions, but largely agree with your conclusions (Please post to explain)

      0.8%
    4. I agree with your assumptions, but disagree with your conclusions (Please post to explain)

      0.3%
    5. I disagree with your assumptions and your conclusions (Please post to explain)

      0.8%
    6. Too long; didn't read.

      2.0%
    1. Asvarduil

      Asvarduil Builder of Very Small Ships

      Joined:
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      And remember to bring Oreos!
       
      • Like Like x 1
    2. DeathsEye

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      Mar 13, 2015
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      I think you are really onto something here, but at the same time we have to take into consideration that StarMade is still only in Alpha, not even Beta stage.

      Perhaps in time, the AI will get better, perhaps there will be survival aspects and new tools, economy, randomly-spawning trade ships to rob, who knows?

      Personally, i would love an economy system, and spawning on a ship (with limitations of course) and things along those lines.. give it more a minecraft/space engineer feeling to the game, which is what i think it needs!

      But again, thats my opinion, but overall i think you're right about a lot of things!
       
      • Like Like x 1
    3. Zephyrim

      Joined:
      Dec 20, 2015
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      I feel like the crew update is the answer to your problem: Larger ships will naturally have more turrets and weapon systems, as well as other features. Not only that, but larger crews will need more quarters, and the risk of mutiny increases, as well as the danger of it. We'll still see larger ships that are very specialized, like super-weapon ships, drone boats, and turret whales, etc. Assuming drones are a thing with the crew update, these specialized ships would require vastly less crew, but they could be easily countered, for example, a slow-turning Titan with a massive beam laser that takes 6 minutes to reload will never hit drones or fighters, and so on. I hope this affects manual flight as well, seeing as it's pointless if it doesn't, if players can still fly their 1,000,000 mass Planetoids without a single crew member the whole crew thing is going to be pretty pointless.
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    4. Lukwan

      Lukwan Human

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      I have pulled this off in combat. (If there is enough chaos you can re-boot the core...hide in the wreckage for 30 seconds, then re-enter the core.) No, I did not fly my wreck home, but I did go into build-mode and ate most of my proprietary systems so my enemy could not reverse engineer my dirty tricks. He did kill me again but I left him with only a shell of armor and some generic mods.
       
    5. Dire Venom

      Joined:
      Feb 27, 2014
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      I completly agree!
      However I do not want to have to constantly deal with buggy crew member getting themselves stuck or jumping overboard.
      As long as they are reasonably bug free and do not make flying a large ship a pain Im all for it (but want to see the system tested and perfected first).
       
    6. Somar

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      Apr 8, 2016
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      I completely agree with it. You seem to have a good knowledge of how space opera battles happen. And it is interesting.

      Also, as this was wrote in 2014, did anything you said now exists ingame? I really hope so.
       
    7. Yetimania

      Joined:
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      I haven't been super active lately, but the big addition seems to be that you can now give rudimentary orders to AI-controlled spaceships: go there, defend this place, that kind of thing. This even includes redock to the mothership, though it requires some sophisticated logic to build a proper launch-and-redock rail system.

      We'll have to see how this addition plays out in the long run, but on a server with a good economy (which we're also starting to get; mining and asteroids have gotten a lot of attention by the devs in recent updates) this could get us to a point close to what I was describing.

      My guess is that combat now will look something like this: one PC on each side will control a 'flagship,' which is likely the biggest and baddest ship you have, and direct a swarm of cheaper expendable AI escorts, fighters, and drones. The rest of the PC's on each side will either also control big capital ships, or some might take specialty ships, such as cloaked ships and the like. You could imagine having a person who's only job was to board overheating enemy ships to salvage their blocks mid-combat. With large enough factions, you might get a PC dedicated just to ordering the AI ships, and who is otherwise a passenger aboard a ship controlled by someone else, or maybe in a very small cloaked ship observing the battlefield from relative safety.
       
    8. rcmustain

      Joined:
      May 28, 2015
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      I posted something similar on another thread, but here goes:

      I anticipate that the progression would be something akin to the way it was IRL with the ousting of the big surface fleet battleships and the emergence of carriers as the mainstay of fleet warfare. While the battlewagons have the advantage in fleet actions where the big ships meet and slug it out - a sort of boxing match if you will - the advantage of the carrier is their ability to strike without exposing themselves to harm. Battleship loses the advantage of it's big guns when swarmed with fighters. If it has enough of it's surface are dedicated to fighter defense, it is conceivable that it is vulnerable to a combined attack of fighters and cruisers or destroyers.

      The strike from a distance combat model requires a significant amount of setup: a single player must dock his carrier to an asteroid (to avoid the "attack sector" command also sending the carrier), and scout his enemy out with a cloaked ship (read: reconnaissance missions). Once located, a sortie is launched from the carrier and ordered to attack the sector. The single player may then observe the battle from his cloaked ship and reserve the ability to call forth additional waves, or recall drones from a losing battle.

      Multi-player use of this model is ideal. A carrier "captain" can sit and wait, launching a wave of ion drones, then missile drones once the shields fall. Players might command cloaked ships to provide intel. They may even command support vessels like missile frigates that launch volleys of missile from behind the fighter screen. They could command secondary flotillas that take advantage of the chaos and assault secondary objectives like mining bases, stations, or jump gates. Support vessels could be equipped with "armor drones" that launch and get close to the enemy fleet, negating their first few volleys of swarm missiles.

      With this model, massive battleships are relegated to purely offensive duties - their primary purpose is now to lead only the most pivotal battles (space station assault) or to stay in reserve to kill a carrier that was careless enough to be caught. As so much space on a carrier is reserved for mass enhancers, anti-fighter defense, and drone delivery and recovery pathways, block for block they are not strong enough to engage in a head-on fleet action. Existing faction battleships can be reserved for escort duties.
       
    9. Ratbert

      Joined:
      May 13, 2016
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      Haven't read all replies, so sorry if I just rehash old ideas:

      I think crew members that skill up would create an interesting relationship between large ships vs drones/small fighters on several levels. And it helps solving assumption 3's challenge.

      Lets say a crew member functions lika a AI but also gains experience when fighting battles. Once in a while they level up and this effects their performance. On a large ship there can be many crew members. Maybe a couple of crew members are assigned to reactor terminals to increase the reactor output by 1% per crew "reactor skill"-level, and a few are assigned to cannon terminals to increase damage, etc. Such a ship would have a considerable boost to its power if rocking a twenty man strong crew with a lot of battle experience. The crew of a large ship would also have a much greater chance of surviving many battles, which means that the ships crew would level up further than that of a smaller ship that is more likely to be destroyed, killing the crew. Drones of course would have no crew and thus no bonuses.

      The catch here is that while larger ships gain power from a skilled crew in a way that smaller ships won't, they also become much more expensive in the sense that while you may rebuild the ship immediately when destroyed, levelling up a large and skilled crew takes a lot of time. A dead fighter pilot that had only survived one previous battle is much easier to replace.

      This creates an interesting dilemma when composing a fleet; should you bring your most powerful ships, the ones that you can't really afford to lose, or the weaker ships that you can spawn wave after wave? Or something in between?

      Just a thought I had. You're welcome ;-)
       
    10. rcmustain

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      Excellent point about the loss of crew and the risks to your effectiveness. With this paradigm you would probably have your most senior crew in your largest ships, while their replacements are brought in from medium ships - who are replaced by experienced crewmen that managed to survive in small ships long enough to see a level up or two.

      I don't see much of a dilemma though. Smaller ships have smaller numbers, and a base % bonus would have the most marked effect on larger ships. Scout frigates might be an exception when you have crewmen assigned to cloak modules, sensors, or radar jamming. Boarding vessels might be the other exception - if you are making a play for a cap ship, you want to bring commandos, not red shirts. Otherwise, the big ships are the ones that need security and bridge crew, and have the big numbers to make their output worth that much more.

      I would like to see some sort of role for crew in drone warfare. For instance, a sort of command block that enables sub group functions for your drone wings ("have red leader attack x vessel, have gold and green leaders concentrate fire on y vessel"). More skilled controllers can order more drones around without accidentally leaves some factor of drones behind, or the drones they command have better targeting, etc.

      This would certainly flesh out the CIC on my carrier!
       
    11. plokoon005

      Joined:
      Jun 28, 2016
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      The thing is, we are still left with a binary: either the biggest, tankiest, hardest- hitting capital ships, or the fastest, smallest, most accurate bombers/ fighters. Personally, I favor medium- sized ships, like The Millenium Falcon. Going with the Star Wars analogy, It had a role in the Death Star battle. It served as an anti- fighter ship. Such a ship doesn't seem to fit in this meta- it would just get deleted by capital ship heavy weapons. It would bring an interesting position to the table, but balancing it would be difficult. Everything else you wrote is spot on.
       
    12. Bladeriker

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      Jul 27, 2015
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      With the addition of fleets, the rolls of each kind of ship has a place. A battleship, titan, carrier, destroyer, fighter,....ect.

      I foresee a move away from single ship combat to combined roll fleet battles involving dozen of ships on each side. It was with this in mind that I started designing ships for fleet operations and support.
       
    13. KuramaFox

      Joined:
      Jun 29, 2013
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      We are apparently getting a "Capital Ship" type of vessel, which perhaps has some of its own rules. Among them are apparently planned the ability to use factories and such while still being ships. But I digress...

      If we can have a "Capital Ship" type, then why not also have a "Fighter Ship," which has some differences to its rules relative to a normal ship?

      Perhaps this can be done by having a "Fighter Core" that you use instead of a Ship Core.

      Some of the things that could be applied to any ship classified as a Fighter:

      -much lower energy reactor power soft cap, but reactor generation increases several times faster per-block/dimension.
      -Similarly, shields get a low softcap, but also increase faster per-block.
      -Energy capacitors get a softcap, but also increases several times faster per-block.
      -cannot send power to OR receive power from anything they are docked to. Can only rely on their own power supply.
      Additionally, when docked as a turret, cannot benefit from capital ship shielding (they are still protected when docked normally though, so a carrier's shields can protect its docked fighters).
      -take only 50% damage from non-fighter entities. Exception: a non-fighter is using a turret with the Fighter Ship core, so said turret does full damage to fighters.
      -Some blocks may not be allowed on fighters. This could include cargo systems, gravity units, war inhibitors, scanners, transporters, and perhaps some other systems you normally expect to see on large ships only. (Warp Drives would be allowed, but perhaps limited to 1 warp computer per ship).
      -This type of ship would have a higher cap for mass/thrust ratio (but not speed cap). Thruster blocks function the same as normal otherwise.
      -This type of ship cannot be built past 99m in any dimension.
      -This type of ship can damage docked items without going through the mothership's shields first (the docked item's own shields, if they have them, still work). However, this only applies when the fighter is NOT docked to something.

      That last one is perhaps especially important, as it allows fighters to be effective against anything docked to a titan, even if not the titan itself. i.e. they can do the same sort of role they play in many of those old space sci-fi games where you play the role of a fighter pilot (weaken a large vessel so that your own large vessels can engage it at an advantage).

      Overall though, it allows small fighters to be useful, but only up to a certain size, after which the low shield, reactor, and capacitor softcaps mean you should use a normal ship.

      Additionally, you could use the fighter core to make a dedicated anti-fighter ship, by making a miniature frigate-like vessel (optionally, one with a fighter core itself), and covering it in fighter-cored self-powered turrets.


      From here, we can perhaps make one other change too:

      -Give the primary weapons a natural degree of inaccuracy for ALL ships, perhaps 1-2 degrees. This would help allow small vessels to not get instantly taken down. At present, beams and cannons (and technically missiles) are perfectly 100% accurate when used by the player. I say this shouldn't be the case, outside of certain weapon combinations (cannon + 100% beam could be given full accuracy, as could other "sniper" weapons). Certain systems could perhaps reduce accuracy as well (cannon + cannon could perhaps do this a bit for instance).
       
    14. Cpt_Dewdrop

      Joined:
      Jan 10, 2016
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      Sorry if this has been suggested. I approached the 7 pages of comments as TL;DR.

      Just a great ai system that could be good to implement in starmade, check out AI . Replace the (field/spawn) section with (Undock/Return to Carrier) and the StarMade ai would be fun and easy to use.
       
    15. KuramaFox

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      (deleted, sorry, posted into the wrong topic)
       
    16. MykieDoesStuff

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      I think you might be already be able to do that with fleet option... no idea... can someone confirm this?
       
    17. TranzorZed

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      Jun 30, 2015
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      The engine can hardly handle 1v1 Titans as it is.
       
    18. Bladeriker

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      For the moment I agree, but I foresee the engine being able to handle this load in the future. Of course the main issue goes from Titans with lots of docked entities to, dozens of smaller craft and all the calculations needed for that. I would expect them to address this as part of the AI faction update or shortly there after.
       
    19. NagasGuardian

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      Mar 8, 2018
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      Assumption Four: People are not players, for they want their heigherarchy of needs.
      AKA "Everyone wants resources security sociality and self fulfillment"
      There's a reason that, most of the time if two players work together, most of the time each one flies their own ship rather than having one player be in the core and another in a computer.(Relying on someone else and sharing resources threatens their ability to attain self-fulfillment and creates a social dynamic of inequality between the captain and the computer user. Everyone wants to feel self- fulfillment if people are not taking part in a segment of the games design it most likely because of how it interacts with other components of the game environment. A computer can be accessed from the pilot's seat so why not access said thing from the pilot's seat your point is non-sequitur. Fulfillment comes from mastery of and understanding use and application of systems to accomplish a goal. Why do I care about this battle so much? I master systems and tactics to attain glory over my peers? That still only appeals to the sociality the hierarchy problem with this game. Other than the artistic aspect of designing and playing in beautiful digital dollhouses(self-fulfillment) battles between players are only satisfying the social needs of the hierarchy. People fly the biggest ship they can get their hands on not because they want to be the one who makes the difference but because it appeals to their need for security. Furthermore not flying the largest most capable ship threatens not just the player's security but, the security of the fleet they participate in and social pressure will act accordingly to "correct" and deviation in the successful strategy. The resources they have gathered are also safer in giant flying gun format than in a spacious warehouse collecting dust. Resources not used might as well not exist. This is in direct opposition to your point even in creative matches. Players are people and people in a digital environment have the same needs as any other environment, even in creative battles the player will fly the biggest possible ships because they have infinite resources and the successful strategy corrects accordingly. )
      ""HOWEVER, this comes with a very large caveat: I only mean that most of the time, most people want to be the guy flying the big, powerful ship. I personally have a lot of fun controlling a turret on a larger ship flown by a buddy. But, even then, I always pick the biggest turret on the ship and let the BOBBY AI handle the point defense. Cooperative flight of larger ships should be taken into account in the final vision of the game."" Absolutely agree with this point with one little thing different. The bobby AI should be used to supplement human input rather than be a replacement for it. Would you like to be the TURRET COMMANDER of a starship, selecting Bobby AI modules grouped together by function and directing the carnage off the deck? Like hell you would because that simple little change turns boring automatic systems into a complex system that requires mastery of simple systems to overcome complex obstacles. Similarly, would you like to fly with 4 AI pilots as wingmen derping off into the night? Or be the FLIGHT OPERATIONS OFFICER on a space carrier watching your fighters on a special display giving orders directing them to priority targets and issuing the command to use special equipment like torpedos and hyperspace jammers. I think AI fightercraft should be treated like weapons once docked to special hanger spaces, their size hard capped but a refresh timer should tick away after one of these crafts before they respawn. No sane persons going to put a body in a fighter like that so you can have a human remote control a single fighter. Solves your respawn issue. On fighters in one swoop.
       
    20. NagasGuardian

      Joined:
      Mar 8, 2018
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      This game suffers from a self-fulfillment problem outside of building things. If you want a second wind, a new age of Starmade give me a call we'll talk.

      Nagas Guardian @ Ace Aerospace
       
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