How do we make Destroyers and Cruisers more desirable in the late game?

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Nevars

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It's the obvious solution, however the devs have long had an aversion to solutions they perceive to be too clear, simple and wrong..
Hmm maybe it's not that quite easy.

Just reading through thread in civ6 that the Dev there tried to fix AI low science by making AI prioritize more science resulting in marginally improve in science output but worsen in everything else leading to AI being even more weak than before lol

So maybe easy solution that we think actually have some problematic consequences.

I wish Dev the best of luck in trying to addressed balance issue in Stellaris.

Maybe I have to try to mod it myself first to see what will happen lol
 

Me_

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I wonder if the devs would be willing to completely overhaul the system, by giving the 4 ship types clearly and strongly defined purpose. And by clearly and strongly defined I really mean clearly and strongly defined, not just "type X is better if your enemy is using weapon type Z".

Example (please don't judge the example itself, it's for illustrative purposes).

Corvette - generic starting ship for early game, can do anything but poorly, late game, they can become scout ships via a technology that doubles their speed
Destroyer - starbase destroying ship - the other 3 types can destroy starbases, but the difference is massive. Destroyers would do a few times more damage to starbases per alloys invested. They would need to be useful for this purpose even after Battleships become a thing
Cruiser - planet invasion ship - huge bonus to bombardment, maybe an option to have invading force onboard to take over poorly defended planets, again, they would need to be useful for this purpose even after Battleships become a thing
Battleship - ship killer ship, late game battles would be mostly battlecruisers vs battlecruisers, followed by destroyers clearing up starbases and cruisers bombarding planets into submission

This is just an example of how this could work by having core functionalities that go beyond combat values for each ship (e.g. scout, starbase siege, planet siege, major battles).
 
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Carl_Bar

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So maybe easy solution that we think actually have some problematic consequences.

Having run math on evasion vs tracking, unless evasion and tracking bonuses are culled from absolutely everything even uncapping it won;t fix the problem because it's a lot easier to raise tracking than evasion and it doesn't take a very large difference to make the whole thing collapse. Thats why at this point i'm much more in favour of giving each size of weapon a damage bonus vs a particular size of ship to make the whole system work off a fixed stat thats not modified by other stuff. (you can think of this as the in game stats being a sort of broad representation of capabilities and each size falls into a particular sweet spot for dealing with a particular target when you get down into the nitty gritty, there's even sensible factors that would cause this. tough again the existence of kinetics and lasers alongside missiles throws any good argument about realism out the window).

p.s quietly working on a little mod to mess with this so people in this thread can try the fixed tracking vs evasion across all tech levels. Need to sit down and recreate an old spreadsheet though to check i'm remember some adjustments properly.
 
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Sir Roderick

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I figured as much, that's not the kind of game Stellaris is.

Armor and shields should be the bulk of a Ship's HP, the fact that they aren't without repeatables is odd to me, if they fixed the base equation for shields and armor I'd be happy with Health repeatables. And i would solve it by buffing base armor and shield values.

Start with not considering it a 1 on 1 fight, there should be things the cruiser is good at but the Battleship is not and vice versa.


Everybody's endgame fleets look the same with monofleets of the exact same ship, that isn't working as intended, and intent matters in game design. They painstaking added a RPS mechanic with armor shields energy weapons and kinetics, and all that work is worth squat with monofleets.

Increasing micro? So you go to your fleet manager and add a new ship type to your fleet and press + till you get the number you want and reinforce, that was too many button presses, best to just manually build battleships from 50 different starbases and order them to merge, soo much less micro.


What you mean with he fact that they aren't without repeatables is odd to you?
I'm not sure about the fleet manager thing.
Anyway since you can't put perdition beams on strikecraft or turn ships into shipgirls even though it's feasible with stellaris tech, I thought that to make destroyers and cruisers more useful, is to swap the M slots they have with other L slots, so a destroyer has 2 L slots, a cruiser 4, and a battleship 4 + a XL slot.


there is no evidence matter replication exists, everything in game involves either normal manufacturing techniques, grabbing stuff from other dimensions, or nanites. And the other dimensions one is largely unique to the fallen empires, (dimensional portals on a planet can let player empires do it on a very limited scale for a more limited selection of resources).

Incidentally even in star trek they need matter, what type of matter varies with the source. Some say just electrons, proton's and neutrons, (which they pull from the EPS thats also feeding them power), others they need all the molecules in storage somwhere and the replicator is doing simple molecular scale assembly of the elements and compounds into specific forms.






Actually this does exist in stellaris. It's literally right there in the stats of weapons. Large weapons are not meant to be good at hitting anything smaller than a cruiser, (XL and L+ being best against BB's and up, M's vs DD's, and S vs corvettes). Battleships struggle to carry M and S class mounts in a cost efficient manner. They also struggle to carry PD and can't carry any missiles. Cruisers on the other hand are very efficient at carrying medium mounts, either alone or in combination with other stuff. Destroyers are very good at mixing small and other mounts, but especially small + PD. And corvettes excel at carrying guided missiles.

None of this matters by the time your normally getting battleships because there are several sources of tracking that are available that are not nullified in any way by sources of evasion because either there's no evasion equivalent of the item, or the equivalent is much less strong than the sources of tracking. But if you could build all hull types at the start of the game you'd quickly discover BB's are far from the best option in all circumstances.



Actually i'm a native English speaker, i'm just dyslexic so i rely heavily on spellcheckers to catch spelling mistakes, and somtimes that causes grammar errors i miss as well.

Actually there was one matter replicator tech in older versions of the game that made 30 minerals from 50 energy.
Yes I know they need matter, what's the EPS? I was talking about reactors supplementing the matter, but anyway there are ramscoop for example in sword of the stars that collect hydrogen from space, and ships could be stopping at planets or starbases for supplies, or since the naval capcity number 2 tech there could just be unseen supply ships that supply them.

What about enigmatic encoder and decoder?

Ok, it's just that sometimes I saw native english american speakers that made those errors over and over for years.
 

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Easy, reducing XL and L accuracy and tracking or uncap evasion and change it to cap effective evasion instead.

When your fleet of battleship, the supposely most inaccurate in the bunch that should have trouble against corvette can annihilate more than half of max evasion fleet of corvette before they can even fire a single shot we have massive balance problem.

Except we also run into the issue your smallest ships can swarm the largest and that is equally bad. Corvettes cannot mount weapons larger than small leaving them only torpedoes, which are one size fits all, as a high impact weapon. Should small weapons really be all that effective versus the defenses the largest ships mount?



People misunderstand tracking and evasion, they are only part of the formula and you have accuracy as well which is a set value based on weapon type and not weapon size. Tracking exist to counter evasion but accuracy exist on top of that. In high tech universe it still is easy to hit something and it becomes a game of mitigation.

to hit = max(0,accuracy - max(0,evasion - tracking))

Example Lasers, 90% Accuracy with S/M/L tracking of 50/30/5.
+5/10/15 tracking from Gravitic to Tachyon Sensors
+5..+30 from computer based on tech and role.


So if you fly a fleet of vettes at battleships are going to see a good chance of hits and each hit will hurt because of weapon size. there is nothing wrong with this. Battleships mount double the weapons just in Large mounts that any Corvette can mount in small weapons which ups their chances of landing hits again.

What all this boils down to is, the only way to make ships desirable is through affordability and what type of logistical support required. To keep cruisers and destroyers viable we need to limit the roles each hull type can accomplish with some overlap only between two adjacent hull types expanding role choices as the size increases.

Say we only want battleships to cover long range and carrier duties. Cruisers would would be more flexible with long and medium range, carrier duties, and adding missile loads. Destroyers would give up long range but have medium and short ranges, missile support, and picket support. corvettes would be small range weapons and picket duty.
 

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Having run math on evasion vs tracking, unless evasion and tracking bonuses are culled from absolutely everything even uncapping it won;t fix the problem because it's a lot easier to raise tracking than evasion and it doesn't take a very large difference to make the whole thing collapse. Thats why at this point i'm much more in favour of giving each size of weapon a damage bonus vs a particular size of ship to make the whole system work off a fixed stat thats not modified by other stuff. (you can think of this as the in game stats being a sort of broad representation of capabilities and each size falls into a particular sweet spot for dealing with a particular target when you get down into the nitty gritty, there's even sensible factors that would cause this. tough again the existence of kinetics and lasers alongside missiles throws any good argument about realism out the window).

p.s quietly working on a little mod to mess with this so people in this thread can try the fixed tracking vs evasion across all tech levels. Need to sit down and recreate an old spreadsheet though to check i'm remember some adjustments properly.
I am absolutely against it. Why should the same weapon be different for different ships, if it's already got 3 different sizes? Why should I build smaller ships, if I can build bigger one with more hp? Why do you call a ship with hangars a cruiser or battleship? Both are CARRIERS, all of these names make no sense at all, it's all just hulls, and it's obvious that players will always prefer the best hull available. Why people equip their ships with neutron launchers? Why don't they use t1 lasers? Let's make t1 lasers better in the late game! I can't follow the logic with ship names at all. Every ship can have any role, battleship, cruiser, carrier, destroyer, that what you call "battleship" can fill all these roles, because it can have hangars, it can be outfitted with point-defense or long range weapons. So I would just completely remove all these names and call it "t1 hull", "t2 hull", "t3 hull", "t4 hull", because it's what they are, any of them don't have a role, because each can have any kind of weapons, so it's just hulls with different number of hp and weapons. Why do we need to care about giving each hull bonus, to force players to play with t2 hull in the late game, if it's better to focus more on different play styles depending on the weapons choice, so that torpedoes or hangars were just as powerful, as energy weapons?
 
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What you mean with he fact that they aren't without repeatables is odd to you?
I'm not sure about the fleet manager thing.
Anyway since you can't put perdition beams on strikecraft or turn ships into shipgirls even though it's feasible with stellaris tech, I thought that to make destroyers and cruisers more useful, is to swap the M slots they have with other L slots, so a destroyer has 2 L slots, a cruiser 4, and a battleship 4 + a XL slot.
So 8L vs 4L and an XL? Your just tipping the balance in the other direction. I thought you liked BBs being the dominant warship? If the answer to this situation were that easy the devs would have done it by now. Unfortunately the answer isn't that easy and largely won't involve adding L slots. M, S, and G slots need to be better options, and L slots should not be as effective vs smaller ships.
 

GOLANX

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Except we also run into the issue your smallest ships can swarm the largest and that is equally bad. Corvettes cannot mount weapons larger than small leaving them only torpedoes, which are one size fits all, as a high impact weapon. Should small weapons really be all that effective versus the defenses the largest ships mount?
If you bring the Lslot BB mono to a corvette fleet you earn what you get, if you bring broadside mixed M and S slot BBs now you have a discussion
People misunderstand tracking and evasion, they are only part of the formula and you have accuracy as well which is a set value based on weapon type and not weapon size. Tracking exist to counter evasion but accuracy exist on top of that. In high tech universe it still is easy to hit something and it becomes a game of mitigation.

to hit = max(0,accuracy - max(0,evasion - tracking))

Example Lasers, 90% Accuracy with S/M/L tracking of 50/30/5.
+5/10/15 tracking from Gravitic to Tachyon Sensors
+5..+30 from computer based on tech and role.


So if you fly a fleet of vettes at battleships are going to see a good chance of hits and each hit will hurt because of weapon size. there is nothing wrong with this. Battleships mount double the weapons just in Large mounts that any Corvette can mount in small weapons which ups their chances of landing hits again.
If you need a 12 to land a hit and roll 5 times odds are you'll miss all shots. If you need a 2 to land a hit and roll 24 times (as 8 corvettes are equivalent to 1 Battleship in capacity) odds are you'll land all of your shots. Now the corvettes aren't doing that much damage so it will take a month but they can kill the Battleship, on the other hand every time the Battleship gets lucky a corvette gets vaporized. It has to get lucky 8 times before it runs out of health which would make the fight interesting.
What all this boils down to is, the only way to make ships desirable is through affordability and what type of logistical support required. To keep cruisers and destroyers viable we need to limit the roles each hull type can accomplish with some overlap only between two adjacent hull types expanding role choices as the size increases.
What I'm reading here is that ship sections all need to disappear and having a ships load out just be based on its type. I suppose removing content would make it easier to balance the remaining content, it would also be ya know, removing content which we would generally like to avoid.
Say we only want battleships to cover long range and carrier duties. Cruisers would would be more flexible with long and medium range, carrier duties, and adding missile loads. Destroyers would give up long range but have medium and short ranges, missile support, and picket support. corvettes would be small range weapons and picket duty.
What if I want my Battleships to Tank with S/M section while my Cruisers DPS battleships, Corvettes intercept missiles and SC, and Destroyers deal with everything else? Your reducing player choice.
 

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Just give us more ship section options on everything but battleships, making them all more flexible. Maybe better designed ones too. Why do only battleships get 3 segments with the same weapon size? Battleships are best hands down because the options for everything else sucks in comparison.
 
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Just give us more ship section options on everything but battleships, making them all more flexible. Maybe better designed ones too. Why do only battleships get 3 segments with the same weapon size? Battleships are best hands down because the options for everything else sucks in comparison.
I don't think adding more content is a good idea when the base mechanics that content is built on is already poorly balanced.
 
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I am absolutely against it. Why should the same weapon be different for different ships, if it's already got 3 different sizes? Why should I build smaller ships, if I can build bigger one with more hp? Why do you call a ship with hangars a cruiser or battleship? Both are CARRIERS, all of these names make no sense at all, it's all just hulls, and it's obvious that players will always prefer the best hull available. Why people equip their ships with neutron launchers? Why don't they use t1 lasers? Let's make t1 lasers better in the late game! I can't follow the logic with ship names at all. Every ship can have any role, battleship, cruiser, carrier, destroyer, that what you call "battleship" can fill all these roles, because it can have hangars, it can be outfitted with point-defense or long range weapons. So I would just completely remove all these names and call it "t1 hull", "t2 hull", "t3 hull", "t4 hull", because it's what they are, any of them don't have a role, because each can have any kind of weapons, so it's just hulls with different number of hp and weapons. Why do we need to care about giving each hull bonus, to force players to play with t2 hull in the late game, if it's better to focus more on different play styles depending on the weapons choice, so that torpedoes or hangars were just as powerful, as energy weapons?

You misunderstood. I meant a modifier as in all S weapons get a damage bonus vs corvettes, all M vs DD's, all L vs cruisers and L+ and XL: vs BB's Titans, and juggernaughts.

It doesn't change what you have to keep track of, just makes each weapons role more firmly enforced.
 

Carl_Bar

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Except we also run into the issue your smallest ships can swarm the largest and that is equally bad. Corvettes cannot mount weapons larger than small leaving them only torpedoes, which are one size fits all, as a high impact weapon. Should small weapons really be all that effective versus the defenses the largest ships mount?



People misunderstand tracking and evasion, they are only part of the formula and you have accuracy as well which is a set value based on weapon type and not weapon size. Tracking exist to counter evasion but accuracy exist on top of that. In high tech universe it still is easy to hit something and it becomes a game of mitigation.

to hit = max(0,accuracy - max(0,evasion - tracking))

Example Lasers, 90% Accuracy with S/M/L tracking of 50/30/5.
+5/10/15 tracking from Gravitic to Tachyon Sensors
+5..+30 from computer based on tech and role.


So if you fly a fleet of vettes at battleships are going to see a good chance of hits and each hit will hurt because of weapon size. there is nothing wrong with this. Battleships mount double the weapons just in Large mounts that any Corvette can mount in small weapons which ups their chances of landing hits again.

What all this boils down to is, the only way to make ships desirable is through affordability and what type of logistical support required. To keep cruisers and destroyers viable we need to limit the roles each hull type can accomplish with some overlap only between two adjacent hull types expanding role choices as the size increases.

Say we only want battleships to cover long range and carrier duties. Cruisers would would be more flexible with long and medium range, carrier duties, and adding missile loads. Destroyers would give up long range but have medium and short ranges, missile support, and picket support. corvettes would be small range weapons and picket duty.

Um, thats exactly what torpedoes exist to do...

Also for most of the accuracy values actually used the tracking vs evasion factor is the dominant one, accuracy only really starts mattering once you throw in aux fire control computers as they have some interesting side effects.
 

unmerged(350868)

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I have not read everything here, and I am still new to the game. I have yet to learn the finer points of fleet management.

So far all I can deduce in fleet combat is that you hit with overwhelming force. There does not seem to be much strrategy involved in the actual battles (or enough feedback to do anything tactical).

One thing it made me think of was Master of Orion 3. The game is actually very similar in many regards. Especially the ship combat/design on a visual level.

MOO3 had fleet templates for specific roles, like long range, short range, carrier... which required a certain number of escorts, etc for each fleet Perhaps this system could be introduced? Still allows for scout fleets, but larger ship still require an escort support fleet. You could implement this by limiting larger shipd to a % of the battlegroup... Say 1::2:4:8 for Battleships:cruisers:destroyes:corvettes for fleets above a certain size.

I think it would require a change to the weapons. It seems most of the weapons have a similar range, and dont reduce in power at longer ranges (might be wrong on that)? Also there are fewer weapons to allow for linear upgrades, making older weapons that might have a greater range (for example) less useful in all cases. Might be too much of a change .
 
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Nevars

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Except we also run into the issue your smallest ships can swarm the largest and that is equally bad. Corvettes cannot mount weapons larger than small leaving them only torpedoes, which are one size fits all, as a high impact weapon. Should small weapons really be all that effective versus the defenses the largest ships mount?



People misunderstand tracking and evasion, they are only part of the formula and you have accuracy as well which is a set value based on weapon type and not weapon size. Tracking exist to counter evasion but accuracy exist on top of that. In high tech universe it still is easy to hit something and it becomes a game of mitigation.

to hit = max(0,accuracy - max(0,evasion - tracking))

Example Lasers, 90% Accuracy with S/M/L tracking of 50/30/5.
+5/10/15 tracking from Gravitic to Tachyon Sensors
+5..+30 from computer based on tech and role.


So if you fly a fleet of vettes at battleships are going to see a good chance of hits and each hit will hurt because of weapon size. there is nothing wrong with this. Battleships mount double the weapons just in Large mounts that any Corvette can mount in small weapons which ups their chances of landing hits again.

What all this boils down to is, the only way to make ships desirable is through affordability and what type of logistical support required. To keep cruisers and destroyers viable we need to limit the roles each hull type can accomplish with some overlap only between two adjacent hull types expanding role choices as the size increases.

Say we only want battleships to cover long range and carrier duties. Cruisers would would be more flexible with long and medium range, carrier duties, and adding missile loads. Destroyers would give up long range but have medium and short ranges, missile support, and picket support. corvettes would be small range weapons and picket duty.
Yes, small weapon should be effective against large ship or station if you mass it as sufficient enough number.

Or like you said just go torpedoe, in game it's a weapon decide to fvk up large ship so it should fvk up large ship.

And I did say to nerf both the accuracy and tracking so I don't forget or misunderstand about that.

Like I said the accuracy and tracking of XL and L are too high, whether it's from the weapon itself or through any component of the ship, it's too high so just nerf them.

So that mass of torpedoe corvettes would be able to beat battleship, destroyer beat corvette, cruiser beat them both while battleship beat everything else except mass corvettes.

So the fleet would be consist of battleship and their escort whether they are cruiser or destroyer or corvette or all of them.

Instead of fleet of mono battleship (and well one corvette to exploit the fleet speed bug I guess) that will annihilate everything without fail.

Bam, problem solve (after intensive balancing ofc lol).
 
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DragonJ1

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Well if you think about it destroyers and cruisers are kind of the balance ships. If you want good armor as well as speed and firepower then these two ships are great. Maybe if you want to buff them up a bit make a tech that gives the a big gun bow that allows them to fire long ranges.
 

Cordane

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I've said this elsewhere, but Tracking as a means to counter Evasion is based on four things:
  1. Turning a turreted weapon has to be quick, smooth, and precise - Speed of the turn is a relative term here, but ships booking along will cause turrets to have to spin depending on angle and range. The turn can't transfer too much vibration or sway to the weapon, and the dialing-in process has to be both rapid and constantly adjusting. A larger turret is going to have a more difficult time with speed, assuming proportional systems to its smaller versions (i.e., L-slots have worse Tracking); a spinal cannon is going to have an even harder with each of those categories (i.e., X-slots have far worse Tracking, not just size of the weapon but having to turn the entire ship).
  2. Sensor data has to be detailed and timely - The more information available to the gunners and their computers, the better they're going to be able to find their targets and know where to aim. But for most if not all sensors, light-speed delay is going to keep them from knowing exactly where the target is at the exact point the data is received, only where it was when the detected energy propagated from the target. (While Stellaris uses the term "tachyon" in its name and description for "Tachyon Sensors", what it describes has nothing to do with the purported capabilities of tachyons.) A weapon mount firing at a further target is going to have less timely data about that target than one closer to the weapon (i.e., L-slots aiming at a target at the furthest extent of their range will have worse Tracking than an S- or M-slot aiming at their furthest extents, but not any worse at the same ranges as either the S- or M-slots; the time involved gets added in to #4 below).
  3. Computer modeling of target movement has to predictively accurate - Taking the information provided by the sensors and comparing that to the data they have on the past maneuvers of this target (or ones similar to it), the computer can improve the chances of hitting those targets. (This is the hardest to officiate in game terms, as having an idea of where the target will be beyond ballistic extrapolation is all well and good, but the weapon mount must be able to capitalize on that information. So all weapon sizes should see improvements in their Tracking, but they should be stepped to keep larger weapons from either getting screwed by a percentile modifier being applied to a small or negative base value, or getting a massive boost despite the functional limitations of the mount.)
  4. "Projectile" flight times have to be minimized - A target's Evasion is based largely on its ability to deviate from its predicted flight path rapidly enough to displace its hull cross-section from the potential point of impact. The distance required to Evade an attack (and this can be done proactively by "drunk walking", rather than having to wait to view the attack and then reacting) is based on acceleration and time available on one side and the dimensions of the target. Smaller ships have less hull to have to move out of the way, and typically have more acceleration to apply to the movement. Time is a factor of range and "projectile" velocity - this applies to kinetic slugs, energy beams, or guided weapons, but is calculated from the last directional adjustment, which is from when it leaves the weapon barrel for kinetics or energy weapons but from the last thrust for GW. (Energy weapons having either light-speed or very fast "projectiles" have minimal flight times, while kinetics would realistically have very long flight times - this would likely be hand-waved to be not as crippling to keep them viable at any significant range. GW would normally present an incredibly small time from last adjustment to target impact - whether this would normally put them at pegged "Tracking = Target Evasion" or something less to maintain game balance is a conversation of its own.)
An L-slot weapon is going to have a fairly difficult turret to maneuver and more distant targets on average (both for sensors and flight time) than an M- or S-slot. A beefy computer is going to help that L-slot proportionately well, but not as much in absolute numbers as for those smaller slots. An L-slot weapon might still have respectable Tracking at relatively close ranges (as sensor lag and flight times will be quite small), but will see a sharp drop once ranges get short enough to see turret turn speed become a much bigger factor.

X-slots only having a base Tracking of 0% is nowhere near low enough, but all of the calculations for Tracking and Evasion in the game are based on a 0-100 scale, and wouldn't readily adapt to a wider scale. I think it would be helpful though, as a single continuum that also incorporated GW and SC at proper values would be, too.

Whether there should be Tracking improvements based on improvements in turret technology, rather than just sensors or computers, is another issue.
 
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Oculument

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X-slots only having a base Tracking of 0% is nowhere near low enough, but all of the calculations for Tracking and Evasion in the game are based on a 0-100 scale, and wouldn't readily adapt to a wider scale. I think it would be helpful though, as a single continuum that also incorporated GW and SC at proper values would be, too.
Negative tracking would effectively give away evasion to the targets being shot at but the arithmetic of:

to hit = max(0,accuracy - max(0,evasion - tracking))

would still resolve without error.
 

PhilipSnyder

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I think that a redesign of the ship building system in general is probably in order. That each category of ship was supposed to have advantages and disadvantages quickly got lost as the game evolved. Attempts to fix it have lead to the supremacy and the decline of just about every ship type (with the exception of Cruisers I believe). Currently BattleShips are the king of the battlefield. This will probably change again at some point, and maybe cruisers will have their day. But taking a hard look at ship building has led me to a possible solution.

Each class of ship should have bonuses that are applied fleet wide. For example, I would give Corvettes the option of selecting a Spotter module. Which would take away from its own firepower, but allow it to spot for other ships to find weak spots in their armor/hull construction to give the rest of the fleet critical hit chances.

Some more modules:
Spotter : Corvette: +to Critical chance
Stealth : Corvette: Decreased detection range, decreased range that it can be attacked at
Scout : Destroyer: Counters Stealth, increases detection range
Escort: Destroyer: Increases Point Defense Capacity
Command: Cruiser: Increases hit chance, reduces "Overkill"
AWACS: Cruiser: Decreases chance to be hit, hides ship configuration
Bombardment: Battleship: Provides bonus to ground support attacks (possibly with the reduction of collateral damage) at the expense of ship-to-ship firepower
Dreadnought: Battleship: Sacrifices armor for additional firepower

I'm not arguing against that some ships can and should become obsolete, it happens throughout history, and it will continue to happen in the future. The Battleship was phased out because the Carrier could hit it before it could even see that it was under attack. The Submersible (the early U-boats) was rendered obsolete by Submarines, which were then rendered obsolete by Nuclear Submarines. But even when ships are rendered obsolete, there is attempts made by governments to get the most out of these aging designs.

While the module idea is a pipe dream that will probably never be implemented, the addition of a simple supply system can and would give some of the under-utilized categories some use. Battleships should be a logistical nightmare to support away from supply depots, meanwhile Corvettes could "live off the land" by commandeering fuel/food from civilian ships. There is usually a balance between what a ship can carry and what a ship needs, and that balance traditionally has landed squarely in the Cruiser category.
 
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ZeeHero

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How about big ships are less accurate and have trouble hitting corvette swarms, but starting at cruisers get baked in flak bonuses increasing as ship size increases and hence accuracy decreases.

a Titan for instance would be very difficult to kill with corvettes and strike craft even without putting PD modules on it, although it would not be able to hit them with its big weapons, just kill them faster than they whittle it down with built in flak.

Meanwhile corvettes alone would have trouble destroying the top 2 tiers of starbase and ships larger than a cruiser.