[Mod Release] Zot's Weapon Balance

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Zoticus77

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Summary:
This mod adjusts some stats across most weapon groups to reflect "how I would have done it" if I was in charge.

In a nutshell I felt that missiles were a little too good (especially the ++ versions), the PPC and LL were far too hot, and the LosTech weapons felt like a handicap compared to stock weapons.

Details:
LosTech Weapons - All get buffs to make them as good or slightly better than the associated +++ weapons, and heat reduced close to TT levels. The goal was for them to not feel like a handicap when you get them. The balance isn't perfect, but you have a very limited supply so I thought it best to go with the "rule-of-cool".

Large Lasers - Heat reduced to 24, matching TT value (x 3, since heat sinks give -3 heat)

PPC - Heat reduced to 30, matching TT value (x 3, since heat sinks give -3 heat)

SRM's - All have a base +2 hit penalty (about 10%). Missiles are a touch too strong for their heat/tonnage because each missile gets a to-hit roll. A few less missiles will hit now, meaning to really dish out the hurt you can't sit at max range with them. I also downgraded the +4 damage bonus to +2 and gave a to hit bonus to compensate on the +++ models. 96 damage is too much for a single SRM6.

LRM's - All have a base +2 hit penalty (about 10%). This means to get the most out of them, you want direct line of sight and in optimal range. Indirect fire at max range usually means to-hit of 30 - 50% depending on target's evasion. You get some free damage but hiding behind a hill is no longer an optimal strategy. I have also removed the bonus stability damage on ++ versions. A single LRM15 with + 2 stab. / missile could basically fill a stability bar in vanilla, and you could shoot two mechs per round with multi-target. I have replaced the +Stab with + Accuracy bonus. A few extra missiles will hit per salvo, but you're not able to double your stability output.

Dependencies:
This mod relies on BTML and ModTek.
Here is the Drop Dead Simple Guide to Installing BTML & ModTek & ModTek mods but together by the generous geniuses who created these tools.
 

don Zappo

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What are your opinions on the missile stability damage? Lots of mods scale that back for SRMs and LRMs. You have indirectly addressed this through making them harder to hit and directly addressed it through taking off the buff to ++ variants (very astute, btw). Do these changes impact LRM knockdownageddon enough in your experience?
 

me987654

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Available from Nexus Mods at

Summary:
This mod adjusts some stats across most weapon groups to reflect "how I would have done it" if I was in charge.

In a nutshell I felt that missiles were a little too good (especially the ++ versions), the PPC and LL were far too hot, and the LosTech weapons felt like a handicap compared to stock weapons.

Details:
LosTech Weapons - All get buffs to make them as good or slightly better than the associated +++ weapons, and heat reduced close to TT levels. The goal was for them to not feel like a handicap when you get them. The balance isn't perfect, but you have a very limited supply so I thought it best to go with the "rule-of-cool".

Large Lasers - Heat reduced to 24, matching TT value (x 3, since heat sinks give -3 heat)

PPC - Heat reduced to 30, matching TT value (x 3, since heat sinks give -3 heat)

SRM's - All have a base +2 hit penalty (about 10%). Missiles are a touch too strong for their heat/tonnage because each missile gets a to-hit roll. A few less missiles will hit now, meaning to really dish out the hurt you can't sit at max range with them. I also downgraded the +4 damage bonus to +2 and gave a to hit bonus to compensate on the +++ models. 96 damage is too much for a single SRM6.

LRM's - All have a base +2 hit penalty (about 10%). This means to get the most out of them, you want direct line of sight and in optimal range. Indirect fire at max range usually means to-hit of 30 - 50% depending on target's evasion. You get some free damage but hiding behind a hill is no longer an optimal strategy. I have also removed the bonus stability damage on ++ versions. A single LRM15 with + 2 stab. / missile could basically fill a stability bar in vanilla, and you could shoot two mechs per round with multi-target. I have replaced the +Stab with + Accuracy bonus. A few extra missiles will hit per salvo, but you're not able to double your stability output.

Dependencies:
This mod relies on BTML and ModTek.
Here is the Drop Dead Simple Guide to Installing BTML & ModTek & ModTek mods but together by the generous geniuses who created these tools.

FYI - one thing I did that I think works well is to increase the indirect fire penalty in combat constants.
 

Zoticus77

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FYI - one thing I did that I think works well is to increase the indirect fire penalty in combat constants.

I definitely considered that. In the end I opted to make all attacked have a +2 penalty (about 10%), that impacts direct and indirect fire equally. Not further penalizing indirect fire works better for campaign balance until late game where pilots can get very high tactics skill. Early game indirect fire at long range is often in the 25-35% zone, which I think is good.

There's also the trade-off between players who run Stock builds where you often have a single launcher and don't focus on Tactics to cheese indirect fire and precision shot, and people who choose to min/max everything. Both are equally valid ways to play the game, but it's hard to apply balance changes that work equally well for both play styles.

Probably the better solution to indirect fire being too effective is to mod the skill advancement for Tactics so it doesn't fully remove the indirect fire penalty.
 

Zoticus77

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What are your opinions on the missile stability damage? Lots of mods scale that back for SRMs and LRMs. You have indirectly addressed this through making them harder to hit and directly addressed it through taking off the buff to ++ variants (very astute, btw). Do these changes impact LRM knockdownageddon enough in your experience?

I found HBS's 2 stability for LRM and 3 for SRM to strike a good balance once I removed the extra stability damage from enhanced versions of the launchers. If you want to focus on de-stabilizing enemies, it's a good idea to take a real LRM or Ballistic boat, or both. It makes Jaegers, Trebs and Catapults have a good role. But instead of using multi-target with a pair of LRM15++ to destabilize two mechs, you need to use both launchers and maybe that means needing to get a flank to negate cover or selecting a different target who's not in cover. You can still knock down a mech, but you need to focus fire more and work harder for it. That was pretty much my objective and it seems to be working in my test skirmishes and in my second campaign play through.

I'm curious if there are parts of the game where it doesn't feel "fun" for users. I haven't tried a match of 4x100 mechs faced off against each other because that matchup doesn't really interest me.
 

me987654

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I definitely considered that. In the end I opted to make all attacked have a +2 penalty (about 10%), that impacts direct and indirect fire equally. Not further penalizing indirect fire works better for campaign balance until late game where pilots can get very high tactics skill. Early game indirect fire at long range is often in the 25-35% zone, which I think is good.

There's also the trade-off between players who run Stock builds where you often have a single launcher and don't focus on Tactics to cheese indirect fire and precision shot, and people who choose to min/max everything. Both are equally valid ways to play the game, but it's hard to apply balance changes that work equally well for both play styles.

Probably the better solution to indirect fire being too effective is to mod the skill advancement for Tactics so it doesn't fully remove the indirect fire penalty.

We didn't blanket nerf accuracy.... instead:

- We buffed evasion (pips easier to get.... pips 5 and 6 more effective)
- Increased the to hit penalty based on chassis (from 0,0,1,2 assault, heavy, medium light to 1,2,3,4)
- Increased the to hit penalty for vehicles (01,2,3)
- Increased the obstructed to hit penalty (2 to 3)
- Increased the indirect fire penalty (3 to 5)
- Lowered the Gunnery divisor to cap Gunnery gains to 20%
- Increased accuracy penalty for damaged weapons (2 to 3)
- Nerfed +/++/+++ weapons to a max of 2 accuracy (we also removed all LRM stab bonus like you did)
- Got rid of minimum range reductions via tactics... instead tactics give you a -2 and then -4 adjustment to the minimum range penalty (IMO this is one of the best changes you can make)
- Lowered melee base accuracy to 80% (from 90%)
- Added a +1 to hit penalty

And probably other stuff I can't remember off the top of my head :)
 

Zoticus77

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We didn't blanket nerf accuracy.... instead:

- We buffed evasion (pips easier to get.... pips 5 and 6 more effective)
- Increased the to hit penalty based on chassis (from 0,0,1,2 assault, heavy, medium light to 1,2,3,4)
- Increased the to hit penalty for vehicles (01,2,3)
- Increased the obstructed to hit penalty (2 to 3)
- Increased the indirect fire penalty (3 to 5)
- Lowered the Gunnery divisor to cap Gunnery gains to 20%
- Increased accuracy penalty for damaged weapons (2 to 3)
- Nerfed +/++/+++ weapons to a max of 2 accuracy (we also removed all LRM stab bonus like you did)
- Got rid of minimum range reductions via tactics... instead tactics give you a -2 and then -4 adjustment to the minimum range penalty (IMO this is one of the best changes you can make)
- Lowered melee base accuracy to 80% (from 90%)
- Added a +1 to hit penalty

And probably other stuff I can't remember off the top of my head :)

Interesting. Is that a published mod? Do you mind sharing the link?

I use the Permanent Evasion mod which accomplishes many similar goals on light and medium mech viability in a different way.
 

don Zappo

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Interesting. Is that a published mod? Do you mind sharing the link?

I use the Permanent Evasion mod which accomplishes many similar goals on light and medium mech viability in a different way.
Oh man, you're opening a door there. We have about 50 pages of discussion on this. Check out Balance Overhaul anddZ Consolidated Company Commander in this forum.
 

me987654

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Interesting. Is that a published mod? Do you mind sharing the link?

I use the Permanent Evasion mod which accomplishes many similar goals on light and medium mech viability in a different way.

@don Zappo is actually using both that mod AND the changes I put in. I haven't tried it yet extensively... but in theory they should work well together. What I did makes pips easier to get (IMO important) and rescales the hit penalties to give very fast mechs more of a boost without making the ATLAS be able to build a lot of evasion.

Permanent evasion on the other hand simply raises the FLOOR of evasion once you move and are fired at..... so enemies can only strip so much.

I'm actually very, very likely going to add it to my own mod the more I think about it.