Oh no, espionage is coming! :(

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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Ezumiyr

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We'll see. It's true that espionnage can be annoying in strategy games. And in fact, most discussions about espionnage before Nemesis mentionned the fact that espionnage had to feature constructive and proactive gameplay instead of just the sabotaging some people suggested.

I hope that espionnage will lead to interesting situations.
 
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FuzzyLogic

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I understand the OP's concerns. Espionage in most 4x games ranges from "endless stream of popup messages that don't influence your game all that much" to "et voilà, your game is effectively over". But if I understand correctly that's what the Stellaris team purposefully decided to avoid.
 
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I was about to prebuy after seeing a cool YT promo for nemesis, I was about to prebuy until I saw the “espionage” thing; sadly I read it will come with the new patch anyway :(

Even when sounds funs at first and with good ideas, in my experience in other strat games for me ends very annoying.

The AI constantly trying to spy you, and even if you have some defense mechanics, usually they are limited are you are not 100% safe, so determined AI is constantly bothering you with no reason you with irritating stuff like magically spam a big and powerful “rebel army” in the middle of your empire, I stopped playing Civ V6 for that, I hope they will not implement such stuff here.

Even when they may have some fun interesting stuff, in other games for me usually the annoyances make the game much worse
Yup. Many people are still deluded into thinking that espionage is going to be great because in their minds it's all James Bond movies and playing an one-system nation that throws galaxy-spanning empires against each other when in reality it's going to be a lot of random event "your best friend AI empire X just stole 20 technologies from you, they hope the alliance will last forever" every few in-game months.

I would say buy the popcorn and wait for the complain threads to spring up like crazy.
 
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Calvax

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18th century Switzerland simply cannot comprehend a quartz watch sufficiently to attempt to steal the tech. They might be able to identify that little round thing produces electricity like a battery but it could not be duplicated in that size. Literally every other part is akin to magic. Heck, the same can probably be said of the 1930s. The transistor hadn't been invented yet. They would have no way of identifying, basically anything other than the battery and that it uses a small crystal somehow.

You don't even have to go back that far. The transistors in modern smartphones are smaller than the max resolution of early electron microscopes. Hand one to a physics department in the 1950s and even if they did trace the connections and figure out that the chip is doing something, it would look like a smooth piece of metal even under the best equipment. They'd likely speculate that the device used atomic scale machines (likely with an inaccurate model of how they work) but they'd have to figure out what kind of equipment they need to investigate and develop it with only a limited sample size. Gamble on the wrong destructive technique and you're not much better off. On top of that if these scientists from the 50s did soak up enough resources and time to reverse engineer the phone they'd need to design the tools to build it. Another huge challenge! Especially if all you have is the phone and not even a hint of what a modern chip fab looks like.

Given that examples like this exist within one culture in one lifespan, it's really not much of a jump to see how different cultures centuries apart in technology would have difficulty. At best you'd get some vague hints, which is what the progress bar represents with scanning debris now I guess.
 
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On the other hand, if you're scanning debris, you can get a technology completely out of sequence, without any of the prerequisites. You could theoretically learn the principles for gateway travel before you've invented blue lasers, if you have a working model to study. (It would take a long time, but you could.) But apparently having a secret agent smuggle a working laser cannon out of the country is less informative than having a scientist look at the broken wreckage of one?
 
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On the other hand, if you're scanning debris, you can get a technology completely out of sequence, without any of the prerequisites. You could theoretically learn the principles for gateway travel before you've invented blue lasers, if you have a working model to study. (It would take a long time, but you could.) But apparently having a secret agent smuggle a working laser cannon out of the country is less informative than having a scientist look at the broken wreckage of one?
This reads more like an argument to nerf debris scanning than buff espionage, as far as I'm concerned ;)
 
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Jamaican Castle

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FWIW, debris scanning also works on the or-best-prereq model. If you blow up a ship with gamma lasers and you still have red lasers, you'll get research progress towards blue lasers.
 
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Colonizor48

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18th century Switzerland simply cannot comprehend a quartz watch sufficiently to attempt to steal the tech. They might be able to identify that little round thing produces electricity like a battery but it could not be duplicated in that size. Literally every other part is akin to magic. Heck, the same can probably be said of the 1930s. The transistor hadn't been invented yet. They would have no way of identifying, basically anything other than the battery and that it uses a small crystal somehow.
After enough reverse engineering and poking around with it. And with some help from people from this timeperiod(operatives you recruit) They could probably understand how it works. And honestly how different is a gamma ray laser for example from a blue laser? We dont have grasers irl yet but if we did they would. fundimentally. Probably internally be simmilar to a normal laser.
 
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Colonizor48

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This reads more like an argument to nerf debris scanning than buff espionage, as far as I'm concerned ;)
This is another reason in my opinion. See my suggestion on it in suggestions for how i think tech should be handeled with espionage. But keep in mind reverse engineering only allows you to unlock better ship tech.
 

Calvax

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After enough reverse engineering and poking around with it. And with some help from people from this timeperiod(operatives you recruit) They could probably understand how it works. And honestly how different is a gamma ray laser for example from a blue laser? We dont have grasers irl yet but if we did they would. fundimentally. Probably internally be simmilar to a normal laser.

A gamma ray laser would be incredibly different to a blue laser. To make a laser you need to cycle electrons between two or more quantum states, and the energy difference between those states results in a photon being emitted of a particular wavelength. The greater the energy, the shorter the wavelength (blue light has a shorter wavelength than red light, which is why in the game laser tech goes red > blue). Gamma rays are extremely energy intensive, typically more than 100,000 electron volts per photon compared to the measly 3ev for blue light. This is a problem because at ~10ev electrons are stripped from atoms. So this method cannot be used, long before your material is releasing photons with that energy you will have destroyed the material. We have to use completely different techniques; plasma based systems, free-electron lasers, nuclear-transition materials, positron annihilation are all some potential methods for reliably producing gamma rays, but all have issues and all are currently speculative/under investigation.

Beyond that there is the problem of focusing the emission into the beam. In a simple blue laser you can bounce the light between two mirrors with one mirror only partially reflecting light. As the photons bounce back and forth some of them exit the second mirror and do so in a straight line. Gamma rays can't bounce off mirrors because a gamma ray will hit the nuclei of the atoms that make up the mirror (or fly right past them as though they weren't there) and damage them. Exactly what you could replace the optical components with is still uncertain, though like the emission technique there are options under research.

I'm not in any way an expert on this, but it's a topic I've looked into before out of interest. To sum it up: a blue laser and a gamma ray laser would be similar in the same way a trebuchet and a rail gun are both artillery that you can use to bombard a location from range. But the actual mechanisms underlying either are vastly different, beyond the complexity one is simple mechanics whereas the other requires advanced electromagnetics.
 
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After enough reverse engineering and poking around with it. And with some help from people from this timeperiod(operatives you recruit) They could probably understand how it works. And honestly how different is a gamma ray laser for example from a blue laser? We dont have grasers irl yet but if we did they would. fundimentally. Probably internally be simmilar to a normal laser.

I very strongly doubt it. You'd have to train them to build the tools required to build the tools required to build the tools required to build the detection equipment that would give them any insight at all. The casing is a metal - maybe iron mixed with that devil's metal nickel. This round thing might be a battery, but you can't feel the twinge of current flow so maybe not. There are no moving parts so it isn't a machine. It's magic.
 
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A gamma ray laser would be incredibly different to a blue laser. To make a laser you need to cycle electrons between two or more quantum states, and the energy difference between those states results in a photon being emitted of a particular wavelength. The greater the energy, the shorter the wavelength (blue light has a shorter wavelength than red light, which is why in the game laser tech goes red > blue). Gamma rays are extremely energy intensive, typically more than 100,000 electron volts per photon compared to the measly 3ev for blue light. This is a problem because at ~10ev electrons are stripped from atoms. So this method cannot as long before you've got to the point your material is releasing photons with that energy you will have destroyed the material. We have to use completely different techniques; plasma based systems, free-electron lasers, nuclear-transition materials, positron annihilation are all some potential methods for reliably producing gamma rays, but all have issues and all are currently speculative/under investigation.

Beyond that there is the problem of focusing the emission into the beam. In a simple blue laser you can bounce the light between two mirrors with one mirror only partially reflecting light. As the photons bounce back and forth some of them exit the second mirror and do so in a straight line. Gamma rays can't bounce off mirrors because a gamma ray will hit the nuclei of the atoms that make up the mirror (or fly right past them as though they weren't there) and damage them. Exactly what you could replace the optical components with is still uncertain, though like the emission technique there are options under research.

I'm not in any way an expert on this, but it's a topic I've looked into before out of interest. To sum it up: a blue laser and a gamma ray laser would be similar in the same way a trebuchet and a rail gun are both artillery that you can use to bombard a location from range. But the actual mechanisms underlying either are vastly different, beyond the complexity one is simple mechanics whereas the other requires advanced electromagnetics.
Oh i legit did not know that. I guess a better metaphor would be a blue laser and an ultraviolet one. This is why it would be much more unliekly to steal stuff farther down the tech tree then where you are.
 
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A2ch0n

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I understand the OP's concerns. Espionage in most 4x games ranges from "endless stream of popup messages that don't influence your game all that much" to "et voilà, your game is effectively over". But if I understand correctly that's what the Stellaris team purposefully decided to avoid.
Actually it's more in the first direction. I have slow viewed the Nemesis feature stream and read the texts that poped up while hovering above the operations. And if these are the only operations that exist (despite a few event based special ones) and in addition this is the release version (what is not clear!), espionage is way to weak to have a real (immediate) impact.

Especially Sabotage starbase is a real Joke. Read it by yourself

1617990948018.png


i for myself would never use this. It's a massive waste of time and spy network resources. As i said, mabe this is not the final release version. But if it is, it's a shame.

In addition there is the random factor (what i think is fine, if assets would flat that out to have a bigger impact).
But for things like smear campaign, which is maybe the most important operation of all, its really bad that parallel operations aren't in the build anymore.

1617991205860.png


"Lower them" is most likely relatively slow. So it's most likely easy to react to this if noticed. This will never propose a real threat. We need either parallel operations back or a massive bigger hit per operation.
 
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Not sure why op got so many down votes, actually I'm pretty sure it's because of new thing hype and people thinking this time it'll be different.

Whilst I may be surprised the two most likely outcomes have already been mentioned. Either it'll be annoying pretty fast or it will be really underwhelming. Fingers crossed I'm wrong.
 
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A2ch0n

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Not sure why op got so many down votes, actually I'm pretty sure it's because of new thing hype and people thinking this time it'll be different.

Whilst I may be surprised the two most likely outcomes have already been mentioned. Either it'll be annoying pretty fast or it will be really underwhelming. Fingers crossed I'm wrong.
My fear is, that you're right...

it will be really underwhelming

The base concept of espionage is good. I really like the use of the archeology system and the events and especially the asset system. But in case of power and tactical deepness it has lost soooo much since the original build.
 
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bunkerman

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Well late game is already a pop-up spam fest, with espionage it will be at least double as spammy probably more, lets just hope it will be easy to mod out simillar to the other pop-up spam.
 
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Colonizor48

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Actually it's more in the first direction. I have slow viewed the Nemesis feature stream and read the texts that poped up while hovering above the operations. And if these are the only operations that exist (despite a few event based special ones) and in addition this is the release version (what is not clear!), espionage is way to weak to have a real (immediate) impact.

Especially Sabotage starbase is a real Joke. Read it by yourself

View attachment 702481

i for myself would never use this. It's a massive waste of time and spy network resources. As i said, mabe this is not the final release version. But if it is, it's a shame.

In addition there is the random factor (what i think is fine, if assets would flat that out to have a bigger impact).
But for things like smear campaign, which is maybe the most important operation of all, its really bad that parallel operations aren't in the build anymore.

View attachment 702488

"Lower them" is most likely relatively slow. So it's most likely easy to react to this if noticed. This will never propose a real threat. We need either parallel operations back or a massive bigger hit per operation.
Yeah that seems completly useless. It should completly destroy the starbase.
 
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lilsaihah

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You do have a fair few options to disincentivize spies from picking on you. Police State will help a lot to keep spies away from your goodies, Transcendence is extremely powerful both on offense and defense, and Enigmatic Engineering will keep tech thieves from targeting you. People have to go out of their way to get Codebreaking to counter your Encryption.