Weapon Stream Q&A

    Discussion in 'Web/Community News' started by DukeofRealms, Jul 25, 2018.

    1. DukeofRealms

      DukeofRealms Count Duku

      Sep 4, 2013

      We still have a few questions to answer here, thanks must go to SaberSaber for transcribing them.

      (Just a quick update on bi-weekly QA posts, it's no longer really accurate to call them bi-weekly. We'll still be doing QAs semi regularly, just not restricted to a bi-weekly schedule.)

      Weapon Stream Q&A from Twitch

      These questions were taken from a live Q&A stream about the Weapons update. Watch the video here.

      Q: Aesthetics_SM - Will interdiction (ripping ships out of hyperspace) be added in the future as part of the inhibitor thing?

      A: Schema - That is very possible for the universe update. In the universe update the universe how you knew it will completely change in its shape, and it will be a lot more distinct. You will still have a lot of space but the difference is it will be a little bit more condensed into more interesting areas. So there will be more ship traffic between those kind of areas, basically there will only be ship traffic between all of those areas because the other areas will be not very smart to go to. And being able to interdict ships between those routes is definitely an interesting concept and I kind of want to add that.

      One of the main problems currently is that any interdiction would be an area of effect that would either be too small or too big. So either you could make it so you could rip basically anything out of space that tries to use it in your systems around you or it will be too small that you will never catch anyone because at the moment space is ordered in a way that the three dimensional movement makes it impossible to predict where somebody is coming from or where they are going. You can kind of see it in the map but it takes so much work to kind of figure out where stuff is going really, and with the new universe you will have a lot easier time to kind of predict these kind of things.

      If that will be coming that will be station only. There might still be interdictor ships but they wouldn’t be able to be “always on” they would have to specifically burst your interdiction at certain times, because it would take a lot of reload or power, maybe you would also have to stop and set up or something. I’m not sure yet about that, but only stations should be able to have a continuous interdiction.

      Q: Ithirahad - Why did you choose to add missile and cannon mines? It's an interesting concept, but I would have expected that to all be block based.

      A: Schema - The main reason for that is performance in a way, we could put the six blocks plus the one in the middle into space, and that would probably also look fine. We kind of decided to do it model based to kind of help a little bit more with performance in terms of the LOD system, since for most mines you are far enough away so that they don’t have to fully draw. We could have done the same system with blocks but then you would have blocks when close up...it’s more of a stylistic change.

      [Follow-up from Ithirahad] Doesn’t this technically just bring back missile spam though?

      [Schema’s reply] In a way yes and that’s why we’re adding the ammo. The missile spam is kind of not that bad in that range of the missiles, it’s not that high but it’s still a valid point that it brings back a little of missile spam. So having limited ammo certainly helps with that.

      Q: Ithirahad - Are there any plans to make it harder to randomly switch chambers, e.g. make it shipyard-only? Seems like it is too easy to respec in this ‘skill tree’ at the moment.

      A: Schema - Well we kind of wanted to make it easy, we could do all sorts of restrictions. We could maybe make that a config value where you would not be able to respec that easily. But in a way we kind of want players to be able to respec a little bit more, of course with further development of the skill tree maybe there will be some things that you would have to consider respeccing, but essentially it should always be kind of easy in a way, since you still have to build it. We didn’t really want to put the burden of having different sizes of chambers specific to certain chambers, because that would just be a little bit too harsh because you would have to redesign everything. One of the main issues with the old power, and the old weapons stuff was always that once your ship is full of power and shields and other stuff, essentially any change, even a little change to how they work would cause you to having completely to scrap your ship basically. And we had that multiple times, and people were rightfully getting annoyed by that. So what the chambers are doing is basically, if we change something on the chambers and you have to change your ship configuration, it’s easy to do so. Like if you scrap a chamber, if you add a chamber, you can just do that you don’t have to completely remove your ship and build it from scratch, and that was kind of the intention there.

      Q: duckyquacksdontecho - Will there be a weapons update v2 where weapons are balance? Currently I’ve created fighters which are 13*6*13 and do around 180k Shield Damage with beams...

      A: Schema - We’re definitely looking into the balance. We knew that the death beam was kind of maybe a little bit too much. But that was one of the things that we kind of wanted to try out. Probably we will be able to do a little bit more restrictions on it, I think we pointed it out in the pre-release and preview stuff that the death beam can have more restrictions. The purpose of this beam is basically to represent a Death Star weapon, and we kind of want that in a way, but it should not be the strongest weapon to use in a battle because that weapon should require you to “set up” first.

      Lancake - I think the question is more aimed to the latch-on beams. The latch-on beams they have some sort of an issue where sometimes the latch-on doesn’t go to the next block it seems. That doesn’t really happen too often with the beam-missile version because of it’s higher tick-rate which is less damage per tick but that gives it more freedom to hop around on other blocks. And the acid damage going through the armor the config value for that doesn’t really seem to be enough, so the armor doesn’t really take enough of the acid damage away. And it leads to probably higher amount of damage than what it should really be able to do, and it doesn’t help that damage drop-off is probably not enough, considering that you can do like 50% or 25%. So what we will do about that is just changing the config values for armor absorption for the damage for the acid damage or for beams in particular, and also take a look again at the damage dropoff really. Not necessarily making it worse for all beams just taking another look at it and see if it can be changed to reduce the effectiveness of beams, because beams in general are actually meant to be used as a, you fire and lock it down and you don’t have to do anything. It’s not meant to penetrate as good as it does, it really should go all over the place and not stay on the same spot, which seems to happen too often as well.

      Q: Nuclearfunk - Volley fire vs cannon-cannon? Where is the upside (besides focused fire now) of the latter?

      A: Schema - It depends what you want basically, volley fire of course is you subdividing your groups. It’s essentially the same if you had previously multiple weapons on your hotbar, there’s still a thing that is the penalty for having too many groups. So you induce a penalty on the power consumption if you connect too many groups to a cannon computer. The main purpose previously of that was to prevent shotgun style weapons, and it works pretty well to prevent massive abuse of volley weapons as well.

      Lancake - And with volley fire you basically do most of the damage all over the place, you can’t really, well if you spat your ten shots out over one second, instead of just firing ten shots at the same time, those ten shots will always be never in the same spot as everyone is always flying around left and right. Volley fire in general is not exactly as efficient to kill a particular area.

      Q: latterous - Will the official StarMade discord be open to the public? And if so when?

      A: Schema - We’ll probably make that public soon, I kind of like it right now, like the StarMade Discord I have to express my thanks to all of those in there since they helped me a lot with testing and finding issues. So big thanks to all of you, but it will probably go public, at some point.

      Q: duckyquacksdontecho - Will Fleet Controls be enhanced to add features such as ‘Wings’ or the ability to order to Orbit a target or to attack a ship you target?

      A: Schema - Most definitely, I’ll hold off on those kind of things until the universe update. There isn’t that specific of a reason but I want to redesign some optimization things first especially regarding bigger ships. Which will then tie into a system for the AI to have a better avoidance calculation so they can actually avoid stuff by being a little more smart about it than they are at the moment. At the moment they do avoid things but they kind of do it in a jerky way as you can see right there. [referring to stream] So that system will be completely redesigned. For ship battling with AI there are also redesigns, I want to avoid doing the airplane kind of style for ships that they “have runs” onto you. It would be pretty easy to give them behavior like a heat-seeking missile and then like have them approach, shoot at you, and then avoid you. That’s pretty easy to do that, that’s not a big thing, it looks pretty flashy, it looks pretty cool, but essentially it’s only usable for very small craft, because if you have like a big battleship do that kind of thing for you they can not turn away fast enough, they will just bump into you and that will cause all sorts of glitches. So I’d probably do some different AI systems depending on size, but all of that will be redesigned with the universe update.

      Q: Ithirahad - Why is the armour rating a binary mechanic? Wouldn’t it make more sense for the armor protection to scale against cannon damage instead of ‘all or nothing’?

      A: Lancake - Well it’s a bit of both really, it’s binary as in if you have twenty times as much armor than the damage it’s completely stopped and it doesn’t do any acid damage, but beyond that the acid damage doesn’t complete, it’s still gradual. It still goes from no acid damage to a little bit more than the normal amount at some point.

      Schema - Yeah, it’s a margin based system so below a certain margin you don’t really do much or any damage then.

      Lancake - And that margin is so large already that really that weapon should not do anything but damaging that block anyway.

      Schema - The goal was to give the players a better sense of protection and make it a little bit easier to understand. So you can look at your armor and you instantly know ‘okay I’m safe against this amount of damage on this side’ and that was kind of the goal there to have that kind of protective feeling around you. The same way that shields give you a good feeling in that ‘okay I can take that much damage before my ships get ripped apart’.

      Q: Schnellbier - Is it likely to see dev builds with parts of the universe update to test them before adding them together to the big update? For example planets to test them before filling a universe with them.

      A: Schema - Yes, but those will be extremely experimental and it will be highly recommended to never use those builds on an existing universe. It will probably not even be possible to do so. If I release something like that there will be comments to it and what you can try out because in those kinds of builds if you do anything but the kind of things that it’s supposed to show then you will likely crash the game or something.

      Q: porkbellysystems - Is the universe update going to add bigger planets and add moons?

      A: Schema - I will say yes, yeah.

      Q: fuddyduddy003 - Would there be a detailed weapon 3.0 explained on steam like weapon 2.0 before?

      A: Saber - There will be a video about them, I don’t know how detailed it will be as far as like, we probably won’t have all the same graphics as power 2.0 had but yeah there will be a video going up on it.

      Q: Nuclearfunk - 5 single Cannon blocks in Volley fire have the same damage and fire rate with less power need as 5+5 C-C

      A: Lancake - Yeah that’s just the Cannon Cannon version right now decreases a little bit of the damage as well, so you get a little bit less DPS. That’s mostly because of the higher fire rate. When you think about it it’s not really needed to do this because the penetration value of these type of cannons are less anyway because of the fewer damage per shot. So I can basically remove this damage reduction and that will make them stronger as in do these five single cannon blocks as a. And I basically considered that as well, and that makes cannon cannon a little bit better as well.

      Q: Markus_McCloud - Would you consider having chambers use a smaller % of the reactor if they meet certain size requirements?

      A: Schema - Chamber size requirements are based on the reactor size. If you go into your chamber menu you can see a reactor level and basically that determines how big your chambers have to be.

      Q: Stalker_HUN - Will there be more advanced Rails or something that lets us create more complex mechanisms? i.e. a scissor lift

      A: Schema - Oh yeah I’m always open to suggestions for rails and to add more variety to it or more functionality. Always got to be careful with like rail stuff is always a two edged sword in that regard, because it can be very cool but it can go too complex or introduce a lot of bugs. So when I do something new I always have that in the back of my mind.

      Q: Ithirahad - Will there be any standalone updates with smaller features between the cleanup update and the universe update?

      A: Schema - Possibly yes, if there are like pressing issues and if we still want to do some fixes and if there are major things that we need to fix or increase stability then there will definitely be more updates between the cleanup and the universe update.

      Q: materiao - Would you consider having chambers use a smaller percentage of the reactor if they meet certain size requirements?

      A: Schema - The problem is that would kind of defeat the purpose and what we want to avoid is a ship that has pretty much every chamber, and if you build better you get better that’s a concept that is still there. But the chambers were meant to make that a little bit more manageable, but if you add the possibility that if you build big enough reactors you can get basically every chamber in the skill tree then you would add back the overwhelming power of bigger ships even more since they can all use pretty much every chamber which would be a little bit too imbalanced in my opinion.

      Q: JumpSuitAscended - Is there going to be more expansions to logic blocks?

      A: Saber - I think that’s kind of the same thing as the rails, always open to that.

      Schema - Yep.

      Q: NeckbeardThePirateLord - do you ever plan to add full controller support?

      A: Schema - Oh yeah definitely also full controller support, that is kind of a thing for the beta. In the way that the universe update I want to kind of redo the controller input systems, so that everything is potentially controllable with a controller. Then in the beta this kind of system would be built in and fleshed out and polished.

      Q: latterous - Did you consult anyone within the PVP community of StarMade while developing the weapons update and the balancing between weapons.

      A: Schema - Oh yeah we talked to a lot of people but for an initial update it’s always hard to tell people what we mean to do before actually having released something because if you put it in text form it will always sound different than it actually is. I mean if you read the comments for the pre-release and the announcement of the weapon updates, a lot of that changed in terms of perception of the update once you actually play it, or try it out. In terms of balancing what we mostly do is make a concept and work it out on our own and then see if the balance works, how players actually use it on server. There are a lot of things like predictions like people will do this and this and this, but these predictions are in most cases not very accurate.

      Q: GrolarAndBandit - I’m curious about any multiplayer progression, will there be any change to setting up or hosting a server, or adding a way to join steam friends on a private server similar to how other games do it. (ex. Terraria)


      Q: Jacemachine - Are there any plans of including a way of having transporters send to a specific pad? You could have designated pads for going to specific places without having to open the interface and select one each time?


      Q: JumpSuitAscended - When can we transition rail entities between mothership entities?

      A: Schema - That might be possible to do yeah, that would be a nice enhancement. I’m not exactly sure on how to handle some edge cases like if you use rotators and stuff then there might be some issues in that travel between two docked points would be a little bit jerky but we could do it I guess. If there are enough restrictions that would actually not be too bad. Of course as has been said these kinds of things are always dangerous in terms of bugs but yeah it’s definitely doable.

      Q: Jacemachine - Will we be able to get fleets to treat stations like “motherships”--recalling and docking a defense fleet for example.


      Q: Schnellbier - Will you add ladders at some point?

      A: Schema - Oh yeah, but that’s not very high priority.

      Q: Stalker_HUN - Are there any chances to increase the shadows render range and “lighten mode” to actually be usable? Like it could increase gamma and contrast so it's easier to see the edges.

      A: Schema - Oh yeah definitely, I want to look back at the shadows a little bit more there are some techniques I got better at while doing the new explosion, the soft particle effects, and the new weapon effects and I can apply those for shadows as well so there’s maybe a little more render range for shadows in that. Also the lighten mode I think I’ll probably talk to Saber about this that we kind of want to make it more into a mode that makes it extremely easy to build in, to like have more distinct view of the ship in build mode without having to constantly place your lights. At the moment lighten mode kind of does that but it takes away a little bit of the depth perception which is a problem.

      Another thing that we probably can do for the cleanup update is visible cameras in a way, so if you’re building with a friend in the same ship you will be able to see where he is and where he is looking at.

      Q: NeckbeardThePirateLord - Can you tell us anything about how missions/questing will work?


      Q: Schnellbier - Is there any progress with sound?

      A: Schema - Sound I have already in the game, like a completely rewritten sound system, what it requires still is basically put in what sound is played when, and for like music a system to dynamically change it. The systems are basically there it just needs to be intertwined with the game. The reason we hold off that long is as you can see a lot of things change and especially with the rewrite of how the modules work and stuff, if we had a sound system before that that would have added a lot more extra work to redesign the sound around the new system so that saved us a lot of time even though it kind of sounds cruel, in that we only have do it once. So that’s why I’m holding off on certain systems because I only want to do them once and I don’t want to constantly redesign them. Of course a few other systems are still affected by having to be redesigned because you just can’t get it right the first time you do it.

      A lot of these systems and programming concepts and gameplay systems, they don’t have any precedent, like if you do a first person shooter, call of duty style you can look at a ton of other games and a ton of examples on how to do certain things in very big detail and what to do what not to do. In these kind of games there’s no such thing basically, you have to tread on new ground for the most part so you’re bound to do a lot of things wrong the first time.
      • Like Like x 9
    2. therimmer96

      therimmer96 The Cake Network Staff Senior button unpusher

      Jun 21, 2013
      Stairs? ♥️
    3. Cluwne

      Aug 3, 2016
      Slabs, wedges and vents, man. Maybe some exotic rail sorcery involving doors.
      Christ on a crutch, just add hyperdrive already. A non-instant FTL with no range limitation that doesn't teleport you, but essentially stops your ship from affecting the universe, as well as being rendered and detectable for anyone else, while dragging your ship at breakneck speed to your destination.
      This both solves the problem of long-distance travel being tedious as hell, and allows interdiction ships and stuff like black holes, anomalies and other UNIVERSE UPDATE stuff to kick you out of your cozy hyperspace.
      My god, it's amazing how expert Schine is at missing a simpler solution.

      Jumpdrive instantly teleports you from A to Z. You can't stop people jumping to Z, you can only wait at A with interdiction module on.
      Hyperdrive can take you from A to Z and beyond, but you have to go through the whole goddamn alphabet, where at any point someone or something can knock you out of hyperspace.

      EVE Online has it right - smaller ships use hyperdrives that let them zoom around a system, free to get knocked out of the warp and gangbanged by a passing blob. Bigger ships have jumpdrives that let them skip systems but at energy and fuel cost... to end up gangbanged by another blob few systems away they landed on.
      • Like Like x 2
    4. Alphajim

      Jul 5, 2013

      He said he want to add that.

      But yeah a FTL drive would be nice. Quicker but not safe, compared to WARP which is slower but can't be intercepted ?
    5. Kingofanime

      Aug 30, 2015
      Making armor more resistant to beams doesn't help my shields when I'm being shot by B/- or B/M. I tend to make shield tanks over armor tanks, and I can tank cannon shots all day, but beam types drop my whole shield in seconds. I also have heat damage defense chambers.

      My ship that has 123,000 shields gets 35% of it's shields taken away by one shot from the B/- isanth. But it's shield regen can tank the C/- isanth's weapons for eternity. This is done at close range with the mass spawn blueprint button, creating a pirate isanth. I have shield capacity 2 chambers. 1 shield regen block for every 3 capacity blocks.

      Edit: just re-tested added details.
      #5 Kingofanime, Jul 25, 2018
      Last edited: Jul 25, 2018
    6. Cluwne

      Aug 3, 2016
      I'm not sure about hyperdrives being quicker. I guess skipping the charge-jump-rinse & repeat might make it quicker.
      Yeah, but there isn't a single mention of a simpler way to do it, aka FTL that can be interrupted. To make this whole interdiction game work hyperdrives should be the go-to for travel. Leave jumpdrives to capital ships that can power them, and "chambered" blockade runners.

      So far it only seems to be theorycrafting on how to screw over jumpdrives sectors away. It always starts like that and ends up being a massive clusterfuck of broken features that is never looked at again until the next big Rework™.

      It's like dealing with a rеtarded baby - you constantly have to nudge it in the right direction, lest it wanders off to play in the traffic.
    7. Crimson-Artist

      Crimson-Artist Wiki Administrator

      Sep 10, 2013
      why do so some questions have no answers? did they just not answer them?
      Honestly I would rather have a overlay mode then an improved lighten mode. An overlay mode would overlay some white lines over every block on an entity so you no where each block starts and ends. Similar to the way a block looks when you place them in a build helper but with the white pulsating lines still visible.
    8. Edymnion

      Edymnion Carebear Extraordinaire!

      Mar 18, 2015
      Honestly I'd like to see a warp drive system where you just travel at super high speed in a straight line without interacting with the stuff around you, and have jump drives be a chamber enhancement of some kind.

      Jump drives as they exist now are, frankly, pretty damned lackluster. On most non-uber-specced ships, you actually end up travelling father during your charge up than you do on the jump itself.
      • Like Like x 1
    9. DukeofRealms

      DukeofRealms Count Duku

      Sep 4, 2013
      Some of them missed and other answered after the stream, schemaschema still has to add answers for them. SaberSaber has simply transcribed the recording (QA part), so you don't have to watch the video.
      • Like Like x 4
    10. Fays

      Jan 17, 2017
      This made me think of the wormholes/ blackholes that are already around the universe... you fly towards one of those, get pulled in by its gravity and launched at a ridiculous speed out the other end. I've used them to do exactly that after spawning into a new server. Seems like something mankind would want to harness... and yeah going 1 sector at a time with jump drive makes me ask... why'd I put that in here anyway?

      (unrelated note, do scanners actually work for anyone else? scanning a sector doesn't lift the fog of war for me, and hasn't for like a year. not sure?¿?)
      • Like Like x 1
    11. Zoolimar

      Aug 14, 2017
      And that "okay I'm safe against this amount of damage" is mostly worthless as even ships with absolutely identical reactors could deal wildly different amounts of damage per shot. Trying to balance anything around similar patterns seems like an absolutely futile matter at least if you still want to have manually designed weapons instead of prefabs.

      As a result the system not only works pretty clunky in game but also needs to have cutoffs, special rules and other similar things to make it work properly. Instead of say armour just reducing incoming damage depending on it's thickness.
    12. MacThule

      Jan 31, 2015

      Make it a chamber issue maybe?

      You're talking about trade lanes, so while 1-2 sectors of interdiction radius may not seem worth putting on a ship for defense, it becomes an interesting gamble for pirates, raiders, and blockading fleets that just want to get into the general traffic lane and meander about a bit, angling for whatever percentage of the trade lane they can interfere with. (EDIT: and actually, radius one could interdict 27 sectors/systems and radius 2 could interdict 125 sectors/systems - going beyond radius 2 for a system-level interdiction function seems grossly excessive and radius 3 would pretty handy on a mobile interdiction cruiser)

      Chambers can permit different capabilities between ships and stations for essentially the same function. Say the difference is that stationary fields can achieve a greater wavelength because of sub-space harmonics (or whatever). Set an interdiction ship radius of 1-5 sectors, depending upon chamber dedication, with a station-only option for system-level interdiction in a radius of same-system to 2 systems, also affected by chamber dedication.

      Suggested Chamber options & example RC% schemata:
      Mobile Interdiction Field Chambers:

      -Interdiction Field Strength (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 2 (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 3 (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 4 (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 5 (15%RC)
      -Power Economy (10%RC); Power Economy 2 (10%RC); Power Economy 3 (10%RC)
      -Increased Duration Time (10%RC); Increased Duration Time 2 (10%RC); Increased Duration Time 3 (10%RC)
      -Decrease Recharge Time (10%RC); Decrease Recharge Time 2 (10%RC); Decrease Recharge Time 3 (10%RC)
      -Interdiction Range (10%RC); Interdiction Range 2 (10%RC); Interdiction Range 3 (10%RC); Interdiction Range 4 (10%RC); Interdiction Range 5 (10%RC)

      Stationary Interdiction Field Chambers:
      -Interdiction Field Strength (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 2 (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 3 (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 4 (15%RC); Interdiction Field Strength 5 (15%RC) [75% total max RC%]
      -Power Economy (10%RC)
      -Increased Duration Time Permanent (10%RC)
      -Interdiction Range (10%RC); Interdiction Range 2 (10%RC); Interdiction Range 3 (10%RC); Interdiction Range 4 (10%RC); Interdiction Range 5 (10%RC)

      Make interdiction a competition between the sum of the interdictor's RC% consumed specifically by "Interdiction Field Strength" level-ups, and the jumper's total FTL RC% from all FTL-related chambers. So a ship can hyper-specialize in blockade running by putting its entire RC% into FTL chambers, but will not have any defense, mobility, logistic, recon, stealth or other enhancements a ship might want if it expects to get through a serious blockade, meanwhile dedicated interdiction stations would probably need to use all their RC% as well to hope to catch every ship that isn't 100% dedicated to warp tech, meaning they will need defense fleets or adjacent stations to handle the ships they interdict. It may even involve sacrificing interdiction range for interdiction strength, and vice versa.

      Good complex interdiction dynamic with integrated counter.
      #12 MacThule, Jul 31, 2018
      Last edited: Jul 31, 2018