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

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Demoulius

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Its not that hard to get 100% accuracy and just about negate any meaningfull evasion all classes destroyer and up can get. Only corvettes keep some evasion but carriers hard counter them. And corvettes you can counter with carriers.

Even if no nerf to accuracy comes, nerfing carriers so they dont obliderate corvettes so easily might even give you some reason to take anything other then battleships. Currently just mixing in a carrier here and there makes it that you can counter everything.

Aside from that though, am I the only one who thinks that 100% accuracy should be...you know....special?
 
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GOLANX

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This was from just 3 pages back in this very thread:

The ability for a weapon to hit a target that is making no deviations in trajectory is going to be based on the precision and robustness of its engineering, and yes, an L-slot weapon should be at least as good at hitting a target at a given range as an S- or M-slot. Actually an L-slot might even be as accurate at its "maximum" range as an S- or M-slot would be at their "maximums". But the longer range of the L-slot means it's giving its target more time to deviate so it will, on average, have a lower Tracking value (or more accurately, a higher Evasion value for its target), just from that consideration. As I indicated above, at some ranges, an L-slot might not have that much worse of a Tracking score than an M-slot because turret movements will be very small (though still tougher for the L-slot). Much closer, they can't turn fast enough; much further away, sensor lag and flight time become the real issue.
I don't think they can scale the stats with the distance to the target. Your not wrong that an L would not be as bad at Tracking at shorter ranges but have you considered the flip side? S and M could reach longer ranges but wouldn't have better Tracking at those ranges. Keep in mind your firing weapons in space not atmosphere there isn't any drag to slow down a projectile or gravity to pull them down to the ground detonating harmlessly. If you want to go with range dependant Tracking go all the way, sensors set the range at which you can get a target lock that you need to fire.
 

Cordane

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I don't think they can scale the stats with the distance to the target. Your not wrong that an L would not be as bad at Tracking at shorter ranges but have you considered the flip side? S and M could reach longer ranges but wouldn't have better Tracking at those ranges. Keep in mind your firing weapons in space not atmosphere there isn't any drag to slow down a projectile or gravity to pull them down to the ground detonating harmlessly. If you want to go with range dependant Tracking go all the way, sensors set the range at which you can get a target lock that you need to fire.
Range may not be something Stellaris is functionally capable of integrating into its current combat model (at least as anything beyond "are you in range? if yes, then shoot"), but it is factor to consider in a more legitimate exploration of space combat in general. As I indicated above, Accuracy is dependent on the quality of the weapon, but even precision phenomenal enough to keep every shot within a meter of a predictable target point all the way out at 10,000 km is only keeping them within 10 meters at 100,000 km (1/3 light-second), or 100 meters at 1,000,000 km (3.33 L-S). Just with that as a point of concern, a target that only Venn-diagrams the possible impact area by 25-50% at a given range should only be hit at that 25-50% rate.

Again, range-based evasion is entirely based on time, the target's acceleration, and the aspect they're showing to the attacker. Turret-based tracking only goes so far to minimizing that evasion, because it's just trying to keep pace with where the target is at the point the weapon fires - it can't do anything about the flight time of the projectile. A combat computer with a sensor system that's getting really precise data might be able to predict where a target is going to go, but that's going to be less useful the longer it's been since the shot was fired. (And as I've said before: please don't bring up "tachyons", as Stellaris doesn't even try to say they're using any "travelling back in time" energy or particles - it's just a buzzword.)

An S- or M-slot turret would still likely have better tracking at the furthest extent of its range than an L-slot weapon, because moving the bulk of the turret around is still going to be easier for the proportionally smaller turrets, even for very small movements, and that will improve their second-to-second precision. But it's still going to be much more about the amount of time the shot is giving the target to "drunk walk" out of the way, while the shot isn't able to adjust, and not the target's movement before the shot itself.
 
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Altruist

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When shamelessly stealing from roles ships have and had in the Navy, what about this (while also having in mind some problems Stellaris has):

  • Corvettes: S-slots, no missiles
  • Destroyer: S-slots, M-slots, no L-slots instead a specialized slot for PD (which shoots primarily at missiles)
  • Cruiser: M-slots, L-slots, no S-slots instead, player choice, either specialized slot(s) for flak (which shoots primarily at strikecraft) or missiles-slot(s)
  • Battleships: only X-slots (upto 3 slots but with X-weapons slightly downgraded), no other slots
  • Carriers: only strikecraft-slots, no other slots (strikecraft get a greater variety which might include going back to distinct fighter- and bomber-roles)

This way each ship-type has a distinct role. Battleships and carriers are stronger than now but also with great weaknesses and need to be protected by smaller ships, namely DD and CC.

Giving battleships and carriers each its own ship-class should entwingle them a bit and allows hardcoding some of their behaviour patterns. It also allows to make battleships very sturdy and carriers not. Reducing Battleships to X-slots simulates what they historically were: great at dealing lots of damage and useless for anything else.

Cruisers are general medium warships with the biggest variety of slots and weapons and by player choice can use a specialized flak slot versus strikecraft or a specialized slot for missiles. When I say specialized I mean that those slots get a kind of bonus like swapping 1 M-weapon against 3 S-flak (instead of only 2).

Destroyers loose their L-slot but get a true specialization as anti-missile boats and are general small warships.

Corvettes are fine as they are but loose their ability to equip missiles. If evasion and tracking gets truly percentage based instead of a wild mix of some boni +15% while other add a flat +15... this would help corvettes into the endgame. A bit finetuning of the basevalues for evasion of each ship-class and finetuning of weapon-tracking-values and other tracking-enhancing devices would be great, too.



Note on PD, flak, missiles and strikecraft:
As of now those are horribly mixed and partly not working as intended. As soon as strikecraft AND missiles are in space, they effectively block PD and flak. The easiest fix is to let PD shoot only at missiles and flak only at strikecraft. But a true fix of their code would be better, though, and should allow:
a) PD and flak the general ability to shoot at strikecraft and missiles
b) but PD switches target to missiles as soon as they get in range
c) flak swtiches target to strikecraft as soon as they get in range (not somewhere on the map but actually in range!)
This is a behaviour, I guess, a good percentage of the players thinks of as implemented already (but it's not or completly broken).

Strikecraft should not shoot at missiles at all (too many roles just messes things up and it's not fitting anyway).
Splitting them back into fighter and bomber with distinct advantages and disadvantages would probably make quite some players happy. Just as an example, Bombers could have battleships and carriers as primary targets. While fighter, of course, have bombers as their primary target. A good place to recycle the behaviour code of PD and flak because for strikecraft it would be actually handy not to go for what's just in range but to actively hunt for targets over longer distances.
A bit tricky, though, to avoid that 200 fighters all move across a whole system to hunt 1 bomber.

Addon:
I am not entirely sure about this but am I right that as soon as the mothership/carrier of strikecraft gets destroyed, those strikecraft already in space get automatically scrapped? This shouldn't be the case and allows to just completly avoid fighting the enemy strikecraft by just killing off the carriers. Strikecraft in space should remain in space and continue fighting... until shot down or, as a saveguard against lone strikecrafts flying thru dark space forever, get auto-destroyed only after a certain time later (just put a timetrigger before the auto-scrap code).
 
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evilcat

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For the record:
Destroyers are somehow useful for picket ships with either M2S2P or L2P design. If you need anti torpedo you can add them to fleet fast and cheap. With L2P you can even use them on artillery position.

Other solution:
Extend the range for M and L for 20 range. The combat tends to be just one big ball of madness so having some space in space game would give M slots time to fire.
Side effect, the battles will look prieter.
 

ImaTomato

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An S- or M-slot turret would still likely have better tracking at the furthest extent of its range than an L-slot weapon, because moving the bulk of the turret around is still going to be easier for the proportionally smaller turrets, even for very small movements, and that will improve their second-to-second precision. But it's still going to be much more about the amount of time the shot is giving the target to "drunk walk" out of the way, while the shot isn't able to adjust, and not the target's movement before the shot itself.

Thats' not really true ,the farther away the target is the less the turret will have to turn relative to the targets position.
 

Cordane

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Thats' not really true ,the farther away the target is the less the turret will have to turn relative to the targets position.
The statement you quoted literally says "at the furthest extent of its range" and "even for very small movements". The difference may be slight, but it is there, and regardless, you also quoted me saying that turret movement limitations are the least of the attacker's concerns.
 

Carl_Bar

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The statement you quoted literally says "at the furthest extent of its range" and "even for very small movements". The difference may be slight, but it is there, and regardless, you also quoted me saying that turret movement limitations are the least of the attacker's concerns.

True but the finer the adjustment you want the slower it's going to make that adjustment generally speaking as you have to downgear more. Stepper motors can somewhat cut that out, but there's limits to how far you can go there too. Also the ability of the turret structure itself to flex with firing forces and also heating is going to put some limitations in place.

It's still doable but there's going to be tradeoffs to a very high degree of pointing accuracy at extended distances.
 

Pancakelord

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Extend the range for M and L for 20 range. The combat tends to be just one big ball of madness so having some space in space game would give M slots time to fire.
Side effect, the battles will look prieter.
It won't do much. Ships (from what I remember from my tests in "fixing" carriers last year*), will calculate range it wants to be at based on some arcane weighted combination of
  1. the smallest range gun on them (so if you have an S gun anywhere on a ship - it'll focus on that, even if you have a few long range M and L etc guns) AND
  2. it follows the logic found in it's assigned ship behaviour profile. (blue and yellow bits below are most relevant)
1626876739759.png



Edit: * Fixing carriers to stay at max range, was done by not changing any weapon stats, rather by modifying just the ship behaviour profiles Link. Done by modifying attack/passive move patterns (and later, modifying the target anchors too).
1601415333973.png
Screenshot%20(3963).png

This basically tells the carrier, drift forwards (due to ships wanting to stay near their combat anchors), but when you hit 150 range immediately turn and run to 151 range [you can see this in the screenshot, some ships have turned around over FUYE III], and continue to sit there, unless another enemy closes on you again. so they end up hanging back (and strike craft have infinite range so they can still always launch and fight).

This solution works well for carriers, but less well for things like titans (as they lack a "reverse gear" and cant fire their T-guns when spinning about) - part of this issue comes from ships not having separate speed-stats for combat - they all fly around at luminal speeds. Old versions of the game did have combat-speed stats, distinct from regular in-system speeds. And several mods exist which add "combat speeds" back, via on battle-start/finish scripts demultiplying ship speed.

The game is also relatively good at using spinal mount guns, but i've found it hard to convince the game to use broadside mounted guns (e.g. with Orbit logic - at X distance, like an AC130) as I cant convince the ships to always orbit in clockwise/counter clockwise... the solution is to give them 2x the guns I guess, facing opposite ways, letting them shred sideways, but have no forward firepower (if you cant fire forwards, you cant alphastrike lol).

So, to cut a long story short, if you - or anyone else - wants less furball-y battles, and possibly a few new types of ship sections [broadsides, "jousters" that have guns all mounted locked forwards, possibly "minelayers" via abusing the 'flee' ship state and rear-facing G-slots] - look to combat computer ship behaviours.
 
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zizard

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Turn accuracy and evasion into abstract stats instead of direct percentages and make the chance to hit a formula (e.g. S-curve) based on accuracy - evasion. Then evasion doesn't need to be hard capped at 90, which is useless late game because of how much tracking you can stack even with L and XL weapons. Bonus is that PD and PD targets now won't need any special targeting logic or restrictions; they will just have accuracy and evasion values much higher than ships. This won't solve everything right away but you won't get anywhere while impeded by the current system. Having accuracy and evasion as direct percentages has so many obvious issues I'm surprised it made it to the released game, and it's evident with how many fudges and bandaids have been laid over it.
 
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Invader_Canuck

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The game needs a fleet doctrine, on top of the war doctrine.

The fleet doctrine would just be as simple as setting ratios of ship classes within a fleet, and then giving that fleet a scaling bonus the closer it is to filling the desired ratio.

Say you want to roll with a carrier doctrine. That carrier doctrine requires 1 destroyer per hanger, so between 4 and 6 destroyers per battleship. If this ratio is met, say, the strike craft gain 20% movement speed 20% evasion, 10% damage, and the destroyers gain 10% evasion. Something like this.

Say you want to roll with a mono battleship doctrine. Perhaps you gain subspace speed to simulate the easy of moving a smaller homogenous fleet, but you lose some tracking.

Basically you use these modifiers to encourage mixed fleets, and to balance mono ship fleets. You don't NEED to remove the option to run mono-fleets, but there should be some malus associated to simulate the loss of combined arms. Head canon it like, a combined arms fleet has corvettes and destroyers sending firing solution telemtry back to the battleships, so you get a tracking bonus and accuracy bonus.
 
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Heliocon

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Many of these issues would be fixed by accentuating already existing differences:
1. Having battleships significantly slow down there combat engage speed, movement speed and jump speed. The battleships should be a core of a larger force, not the spearhead. Make it so that battleship fleets are cumbersome. I am all for making large weapons in effective vs corvettes but allowing SC to counter somewhat.
2. Cruisers having L turrets, and a relative fast movement and engage speed relative to battleships. These should be the anchor of your non primary fleet. Able to respond rapidly and have versatility to attack BS and stations, while also having smaller slots to counter destroyers.
3. Destroyers function as anti corvette, and picket ship with anti SC options. These can protect corvettes from SC, and outgun corvettes but will lose out to cruisers. Let’s remove the L weapon slow from destroyers, and maybe give them more small slots.
4. Use corvettes to initiate engagement and pin the enemy as well as scout. Possibly to facilitate this, reduce effective sensor range to fewer systems out. Allow them to effectively scout and screen, and enable them to see further when you have more in a group.
 

kwheeler

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Just throwing mud at the wall to see what sticks here, what about simply adding some late-game technologies (say, arriving approximately 50 years after BS tech), that give Corvettes radically increased travel speed and modules that let them have better ability to quickly abduct prisoner populations from bombarded planets?

They would still be vulnerable to Battleship fire as they currently are, but they would become raiding specialists. A fleet of all Corvettes could outrun Battleships to strike spots hit-and-run style before slower Battleships can catch them. They would be less useful at breaking enemy fleets and more fragile--and systems with stations and guns could still take them out easily, perhaps? So, Battleships might be necessary to crack open heavily defended choke-points, but once that happens, the Corvette packs fly past them to hit undefended targets.

The biggest possible drawback I'd see is that it might be terribly annoying to run down such fleet if you don't have your own--reducing the game to whack-a-mole.

Another idea is to give Destroyers unique access to cloaking technology and espionage enhancers. A ship so equipped losing all attack capability, but can cross into territory with closed borders and tail enemy fleets. You could park them in any enemy system to gain Espionage enhancements against that enemy--but they can be decloaked by other destroyers the enemy equips with anti-cloakers if they are set to patrol that starsystem and fly into it. Getting caught skulking gives you hefty diplomatic penalties and possibly a Causus Belli from the enemy you are scouting this way.

I guess my main point is, you can give corvettes and destroyers greater purpose in the late game even if they remain obsolete against Alpha Striking long-distance Battleship fire.
 
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mercav

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Just throwing mud at the wall to see what sticks here, what about simply adding some late-game technologies (say, arriving approximately 50 years after BS tech), that give Corvettes radically increased travel speed and modules that let them have better ability to quickly abduct prisoner populations from bombarded planets?

They would still be vulnerable to Battleship fire as they currently are, but they would become raiding specialists. A fleet of all Corvettes could outrun Battleships to strike spots hit-and-run style before slower Battleships can catch them. They would be less useful at breaking enemy fleets and more fragile--and systems with stations and guns could still take them out easily, perhaps? So, Battleships might be necessary to crack open heavily defended choke-points, but once that happens, the Corvette packs fly past them to hit undefended targets.

The biggest possible drawback I'd see is that it might be terribly annoying to run down such fleet if you don't have your own--reducing the game to whack-a-mole.

Another idea is to give Destroyers unique access to cloaking technology and espionage enhancers. A ship so equipped losing all attack capability, but can cross into territory with closed borders and tail enemy fleets. You could park them in any enemy system to gain Espionage enhancements against that enemy--but they can be decloaked by other destroyers the enemy equips with anti-cloakers if they are set to patrol that starsystem and fly into it. Getting caught skulking gives you hefty diplomatic penalties and possibly a Causus Belli from the enemy you are scouting this way.

I guess my main point is, you can give corvettes and destroyers greater purpose in the late game even if they remain obsolete against Alpha Striking long-distance Battleship fire.
I think corvettes aren't the issue; but making late game techs for not battleships is certainly an option.
 
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TrotBot

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Its not that hard to get 100% accuracy and just about negate any meaningfull evasion all classes destroyer and up can get. Only corvettes keep some evasion but carriers hard counter them. And corvettes you can counter with carriers.

Even if no nerf to accuracy comes, nerfing carriers so they dont obliderate corvettes so easily might even give you some reason to take anything other then battleships. Currently just mixing in a carrier here and there makes it that you can counter everything.

Aside from that though, am I the only one who thinks that 100% accuracy should be...you know....special?
Lol don't nerf carriers that's literally the only non-battleship thing that's viable in this game.
 
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Jman5

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Just throwing mud at the wall to see what sticks here, what about simply adding some late-game technologies (say, arriving approximately 50 years after BS tech), that give Corvettes radically increased travel speed and modules that let them have better ability to quickly abduct prisoner populations from bombarded planets?

They would still be vulnerable to Battleship fire as they currently are, but they would become raiding specialists. A fleet of all Corvettes could outrun Battleships to strike spots hit-and-run style before slower Battleships can catch them. They would be less useful at breaking enemy fleets and more fragile--and systems with stations and guns could still take them out easily, perhaps? So, Battleships might be necessary to crack open heavily defended choke-points, but once that happens, the Corvette packs fly past them to hit undefended targets.

The biggest possible drawback I'd see is that it might be terribly annoying to run down such fleet if you don't have your own--reducing the game to whack-a-mole.

Another idea is to give Destroyers unique access to cloaking technology and espionage enhancers. A ship so equipped losing all attack capability, but can cross into territory with closed borders and tail enemy fleets. You could park them in any enemy system to gain Espionage enhancements against that enemy--but they can be decloaked by other destroyers the enemy equips with anti-cloakers if they are set to patrol that starsystem and fly into it. Getting caught skulking gives you hefty diplomatic penalties and possibly a Causus Belli from the enemy you are scouting this way.

I guess my main point is, you can give corvettes and destroyers greater purpose in the late game even if they remain obsolete against Alpha Striking long-distance Battleship fire.
Before increasing corvette speed, I would like to see them fix the mixed-fleet speed bug where a single corvette in an otherwise all-battleship fleet will increase the battleship's speed to match the corvette's speed. Basically, a lot of mid and late game fleets are moving waaay faster than they should. I'd like to fix that first and see how that feels.
 
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Before increasing corvette speed, I would like to see them fix the mixed-fleet speed bug where a single corvette in an otherwise all-battleship fleet will increase the battleship's speed to match the corvette's speed. Basically, a lot of mid and late game fleets are moving waaay faster than they should. I'd like to fix that first and see how that feels.
Wait I thought this was fixed?
 
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Before increasing corvette speed, I would like to see them fix the mixed-fleet speed bug where a single corvette in an otherwise all-battleship fleet will increase the battleship's speed to match the corvette's speed. Basically, a lot of mid and late game fleets are moving waaay faster than they should. I'd like to fix that first and see how that feels.
Seems quite reasonable as a precaution.
 

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Wait I thought this was fixed?
Nope. Basically the way it works is that ships will match the speed of the unit at the front of the fleet formation. Fleet formation order goes: Destroyers in front -> Corvettes -> Cruisers -> Battleships -> Titans.

So if you have 99 battleships and 1 corvette, the corvette is in the front making all the battleships match its speed. It also means that bringing Destroyers is a bad idea because it will slow your fleet to match destroyer max speed rather than the corvette.

The kludgy fix that I implemented in my own files is to switch the formation orders around so that Battleships are always in the front, then titans, (which can technically be faster), then cruisers, destroyers, and finally corvettes in the back. As far as I can tell it makes no real difference in combat.
 
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