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Voxel and Venting : What does the Game Design team think ?


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Hi,

There has been a change in the HP value of shields to align them with voxels
=> It's a good thing
 

But when I try to see if it is relevant to use voxel to be able to play with the venting function. I can't find anything conclusive.


I made a small table to see if it is interesting to use an M shield and the voxel. Or if it is more relevant to go directly to a L shield :

image.png.8926c2f4f218cbe3a757af21e6fa8ae8.png

The M shield is 30 Tons.
So I have the right to use 95 Tons of voxels before reaching the weight of the L shield.

At the resistance level, I decided to go with the average values. The fact that the shield has a dynamic resistance management function is an argument in its favor. Keep it in your mind.
 

From what we can see on the table, the best armor that gives us the most hit points is the T1 plastic voxel.
Average: 6,666,000 + 8,750,000 = 15,416,0000

In 2nd and 3rd position we find the Al-LI and the SC-Al.

The shield L has 13,333,000 life points.

Which is slightly worse than plastic shielding.

But now we must remember that its resistance values are dynamic, which will certainly make it pass in real condition.

You should also know that during the venting phase, you take the risk of losing elements and seeing your combat capacity reduced.

Analysis :

If you can upgrade your shield size, you should. This will always provide you with much better protection than that offered by the voxel.


Problems to be solved:

- The values of % of resistance do not correspond to the tier of the voxels, we end up with a plastic of tier 1 always clearly more efficient than the others. Tier 5 was particularly lagging behind.

- Venting phases are currently unplayable if using XS, S, and M size shields.
- The TTK values of weapons seem unbalanced when comparing the hitpoint values which seem really low for elements and voxels. Kiling all very faster.

I think it would be nice if the game designer could chime in on this thread to clarify how he sees the use of these shields and the venting phase.

See you later,

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And I forgot, I also wanted to talk about the economic value of things.
If we compare a shield L
With a Shield M + voxel (with the Al-Li which is a Tier 3 voxel like the shields).
This gives in volume of ore:
About 100,000 liters for the shield L
About 115,000 liters for the M + 3800m Voxel Al-Li shield.
 

Knowing that the proportion of T3 is 70% for the choice Shield M + voxel
While it is only 20% for the L shield alone.
 

Economically, you also have every interest in using the larger size shield.

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Posted (edited)

What about factoring in hit chance from having a bigger ship due to voxel tank? Or is the assumption that the voxels could all fit within the cross section of guns/engines?

 

Is the summary here that voxel tanks are only for big + slow ships with the current patch?

Edited by Shredder
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I am not too sure how to read this post, since it's been a no-brainer to run L shields and lots of voxels on the large ships to retain tankiness. By nerfing the shield and introducing max speed limitation to 20.000 km/h for the heavy ships all they did is cement this: You get voxel tanky with a big bulky ship and keep your L shield on it, the more voxel HP and thus core stress, the more venting processes you can survive once your shields are depleted.

Smaller shields like M or S shields only come into consideration if you want to retain any sort of max speed or push your max speed as high as you can get it, since you will want to aim for as low ship mass as possible. But that includes a completely different playstyle of utilizing the advantage of being faster than the enemy and disengaging at a speed at which the enemy cannot keep up, which allows you to safely vent and basicly weave in and out of the fight, taking advantage of your superior speed.

With that in mind, tankiness from voxels becomes kinda irrelevant on those smaller, faster ships though, unless you wanna survive a few shots after losing your shields on those kinda ships too
 

 

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I find it a shame to have an item in the game that you can't use one of their features on.
 

If the ventilation does not work on XS, S or M shields, I think there is a fundamental balancing problem.
 

The solution must not come from: Use an L-shield and that's how it is now.

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Hello there,

 

First off, thanks for the feedback. 

 

So there's a couple of different things to touch on here:

 

  • The internal balance of shields sizes
  • CCS/honeycomb health vs Shield Health per mass
  • Venting


I’ll try to address in that order but they will mesh a little since they have some obvious links.

 

First of all smaller shield sizes are at an advantage in regards to HP/mass. So something to keep in mind is that as you go up in size, as it pertains only to shields, you are losing out on the HP/mass ratio (in simpler terms, each HP weighs more on larger shields). This is an inbuilt advantage smaller sizes simply have.

However, the main and primary reason we have different shield sizes at all, is to support constructs of varying sizes and mass. This is the key center-point around which everything else mostly revolves.

 

If you are intending to make a larger, heavier construct, that is going to trend towards or go past the max mass, then the large shield becomes the obvious choice. However, should you want to make something smaller, more agile, and quicker, you may start to use shields of smaller sizes. We already see people experimenting with constructs of smaller sizes using S and M shields to take advantage of the speed, this is a great direction, as long as the pendulum does not swing too far in the favor of smaller constructs.

Now, if the weight penalties do not sufficiently affect the design of the ship, and large shields are still too mass effective even on smaller designs. That's a subject we will continue to address. We do not want to see S designs using exclusively L shields because the additional mass from larger shields doesn't matter in regards to acceleration, max speed, and rotation speed.

 

To answer your question clearly, there is no direct goal for an M shield and an equivalent 95t of voxel to be worse, equal, or better than an L shield and I’ll try to explain why as we go. You should take the shield of the size that makes sense for the design of your ship. If you have the mass available, or are willing to “spend” the mass to have a larger shield, then go for it.

 

Don't want to get into the venting subject too quickly, but using an M with a bunch of honeycomb could allow you to vent once or twice during a battle, especially on a lighter design that can also evade some damage. Maybe the balancing on that isn't perfect, but it should be an option.

At the end of the day the inbuilt advantage of an M shield over an L shield is that it's significantly lighter. You say it's always worth going to an L shield because M+HC is worse in HP, maybe this is the case (more on that later) but the point is that for that 95t you could probably build out a good part of a fully equipped construct, allowing you to have a quicker, more agile construct with a superior max speed, that's the upside.

 

Talking concretely in regards to the mass, if I made a competitive light-ish design with an M shield around 250t ( I don't have one on hand, this is probably on the lighter side after the changes). I'm going about 38-39k km/h max speed, just switching from an M shield to an L shield, I drop down to about 35k km/h. Now adding an extra 95t to a 250t design is probably going to seriously hurt my acceleration as well, so now I'm probably at least looking at redoing my engine setup, which likely adds some more mass as well.

So now the question is more along the lines of, do I prefer an extra 5mill HP from the L shield, or about 5000-6000km/h extra max speed and some extra rotation speed. Well that's a question I’d love feedback on, maybe the max speed and rotation speed isn't enough, I could see that.

 

Secondly there could be an advantage to being able to “modulate” your weight while still gaining some tankiness from honeycomb. An M shield with some honeycomb unlocks some venting on that design, while retaining some/most of the mobility.

 

In regards to your reasoning about M vs L shields. Roughly you're going from “it only makes sense to use the largest shield mass wise, so I can never vent on xs-m because I'm not going to be using voxels on anything smaller than the L”.

 

Well honestly, I don't particularly agree with that, at least not in theory. The interest of voxels is that it's scalable, and you can choose how much voxel you think you need. If you're going to use an M shield because that makes sense for your design mass wise, you don't “have” to use 95t of honeycomb. You can use 30t of a good hc over your ship. That's already going to give you a chunk of armor to help you get some venting going, and probably not endanger your cross-section too much. If that honeycomb buys you enough time for 2 vents (probably optimistic), then you’ve essentially caught up on an L shield in raw shield HP and you’re operating at more than half the mass. 

Now maybe that's not viable, maybe the honeycomb itself is too weak and even reasonable quantities of honeycomb get blown apart too quickly, that's possible and that's something we can look at. Perhaps at that point the subject is more that voxels are generally weak.

 

It's also important to note that in regards to your “real HP”, some amount of the incoming hits are also going to be hitting elements, elements that can be repaired which can give you more tankiness down the road. That means that when comparing raw HP to CCS, you have to take into account that CCS is counting every hit no matter where it's going, as opposed to your raw voxel HP which will, in effect, have additional health from elements.

 


For point 2, there's a couple things to say here. Shields are not inherently in competition with honeycomb, as mentioned we don't want them to be magnitudes apart in terms of HP because it wouldn't make sense, but fundamentally they are supposed to be complimentary.

 

Now in regards to your chart and conclusions. You didn't quite explain what “mean raw HP” is but I can guess it's the actual HP value of the deployed m3 HC multiplied by the average resistance, or at least I get close enough to your numbers using that.


Internally, in our tests using real ships CCS almost always goes first as opposed to the direct destruction of the core, I’d say in general this is situational depending on the design of the ship. In my experience, when constructs actually have a good amount of voxels, it's very difficult to dig your way to the core, and between the HC and the elements and the (occasional, hopefully fewer and fewer) lost shot, I believe that most of the time, you can count on your CCS HP being your “real” HP bar.  If that's not the case, especially on ships that have a good amount of HC, I’d love to see/hear more about it, since that would be contrary to what we’ve tested. Perhaps certain voxels are outliers.

 

My gut feeling is that in the “nano-age” during which CCS was introduced and voxels were rebalanced, people haven't been using voxels a ton in pvp. The goal is for that to change and honestly, if people start using voxels in some quantity, that's already good progress. If it does come out that cheaper voxels, or certain cheap voxels are always way better than more expensive voxels, I'll be more than happy to take a look at that (and to be honest, I’ve started already since I had to look at a bunch of stuff for this).

Lastly on this, you’ve defined that plastic is the best material on the basis of it having the most “mean HP” for the mass. That may be the case, but seeing how much effort players have put into reducing cross-section at almost any cost, I don't think 6700 m3 of plastic is always going to be the best solution.

 


For the last point in regards to venting, I feel like I’ve partly answered the question already but I’ll answer more broadly. Venting isn't something that will or needs to be used. It's a tool at your disposal and it's up to you to figure out how and when you're going to use it depending on the situation and the design of your ship. In contrast it's our job to make sure that those avenues can exist in the game.

 

In view of that, lighter ships now can try to disengage using their speed and try to get away and disengage to vent and come back, some ships may have honeycomb to tank on the CCS, some ships may not be able to reliably vent. If you design your ship in such a way that it cannot vent, then that's on you. However, if it is the case that there are NO competitive designs that allow you to vent at all, I agree that's a problem we need to change.

 

It will come down to the design of your ship, and it's possible that venting will be more usable in certain situations, and certain circumstances than others. For example, I don't expect smaller and lighter ships to have enough CCS/voxels to tank more than a couple hits (let alone all the elements that will die on a compact design) so if they can't escape the firepower using their speed/agility, they are likely dead. But who knows, it might be worth it now to dedicate some amount of HC on ships, specifically to be able to tank a handful of shots to get some shield HP back, even if you don't manage a full cycle off.

 

Essentially from my perspective, if you go no honeycomb, you are accepting that venting is going to be a tougher proposal than if you had dedicated some mass to HC protection, there's a tradeoff there. Now maybe that tradeoff isn't balanced, and there's one obvious better choice than the other, in that case we will take a look (that was sort of what was happening up to 0.29, there wasn't much point to using HC, but I think between the shield mass and health changes,  and the speed changes, HC could have merit again in at least some designs, but maybe it's not enough).

 

For an example on a relatively light design, even just 100m3 of that grade 5 titanium is going to give you around 1.2milll CCS health for 4-5~ extra tonnes. Is that enough to tank serious damage for a while? No, probably not. Is it enough to absorb a couple hits as you try to pull out of range, get your transversal speed up and start venting some HP back, probably yes. The downside is your cross-section may suffer and you'll lose some speed (honestly the speed loss won't be much, even at the most severe parts of the speed curve). Is it worth it? I’d say so yeah, in some designs and some situations, especially now that heavy L ships can’t easily rotate to keep up with smaller constructs, having a slightly larger cross-section probably isn't such a big deal in certain scenarios now.

 

To be fair in regards to that point, I agree that on lighter and more compact constructs, the damage dealt to elements will sometimes be what ends up killing you rather than CCS, or even the core being killed. If you take a nasty hit that blows up half your elements, you are essentially dead. My question is are you able to use some HC, to reduce the chances of a good hit taking you out of the fight entirely.

 

I did a quick test, put up 50m3 of grade 5 titanium and blasted it with a fully talented laser L. It took 3 shots to get through and kill the core I had placed  just behind the material. To be honest though, based on my hit chance on a totally immobile target with zero cone or range issue, I would actually expect an actual S design to take almost 0 damage from L weapons. The shield and the CCS at that point is more of an insurance policy for the occasional hit, or to fight off other smaller constructs.

 

There's also something to be said about balancing cross-section vs compactness. Not having all your elements in the same spot, even on smaller designs, means a single shot has less chance to obliterate half your elements.

 


Anyway, I'm just spitballing on a lot of things, I certainly don't have all the answers, and likely there's some things I’ve missed, or some things I've overestimated the importance of or underestimated the importance of.

 

 

Now to address your “problems to be solved” directly as a conclusion of sorts.

 

   Point 1: In regards to this point, if people start using any honeycomb at all it’ll be a good direction. Once we get to the point where we’re saying “we’re using HC and these honeycombs are all clearly better than these honeycomb”, we will be in a good place to start addressing HC internal balancing. The second thing is I do currently believe that especially on larger ships, CCS is a better representation of health than raw HP, and this is likely the opposite on smaller ships.

 

   Point 2: I‘m not totally set on this. Unplayable seems like a strong word here. I think lighter, smaller constructs have more opportunities now to disengage from fights in order to vent, or potentially exploit larger ships' slow rotation to stay out of the cone of the guns. Additionally, in my mind, some honeycomb can be a valuable addition to smaller designs, to give yourself some room to vent. However, If this isn't enough, we could explore more powerful and quicker vents for smaller shields, that's certainly a possibility.

 

   Point 3: Maybe, I’ve gotten some info by looking into it again today, and it's possible some changes can come down the line on this. In the past we’ve had the opposite issues, so it's possible we went too far.

 


I know this is a big blob, I hope my numbers were right, my brain is a little hazy, and hopefully I’ve answered most of your questions and made this a little clearer for you guys.

 

 

Thanks.
 

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57 minutes ago, NQ-Entropy said:

Hello there,

 

First off, thanks for the feedback. 

 

So there's a couple of different things to touch on here:

 

  • The internal balance of shields sizes
  • CCS/honeycomb health vs Shield Health per mass
  • Venting


I’ll try to address in that order but they will mesh a little since they have some obvious links.

 

First of all smaller shield sizes are at an advantage in regards to HP/mass. So something to keep in mind is that as you go up in size, as it pertains only to shields, you are losing out on the HP/mass ratio (in simpler terms, each HP weighs more on larger shields). This is an inbuilt advantage smaller sizes simply have.

However, the main and primary reason we have different shield sizes at all, is to support constructs of varying sizes and mass. This is the key center-point around which everything else mostly revolves.

 

If you are intending to make a larger, heavier construct, that is going to trend towards or go past the max mass, then the large shield becomes the obvious choice. However, should you want to make something smaller, more agile, and quicker, you may start to use shields of smaller sizes. We already see people experimenting with constructs of smaller sizes using S and M shields to take advantage of the speed, this is a great direction, as long as the pendulum does not swing too far in the favor of smaller constructs.

Now, if the weight penalties do not sufficiently affect the design of the ship, and large shields are still too mass effective even on smaller designs. That's a subject we will continue to address. We do not want to see S designs using exclusively L shields because the additional mass from larger shields doesn't matter in regards to acceleration, max speed, and rotation speed.

 

To answer your question clearly, there is no direct goal for an M shield and an equivalent 95t of voxel to be worse, equal, or better than an L shield and I’ll try to explain why as we go. You should take the shield of the size that makes sense for the design of your ship. If you have the mass available, or are willing to “spend” the mass to have a larger shield, then go for it.

 

Don't want to get into the venting subject too quickly, but using an M with a bunch of honeycomb could allow you to vent once or twice during a battle, especially on a lighter design that can also evade some damage. Maybe the balancing on that isn't perfect, but it should be an option.

At the end of the day the inbuilt advantage of an M shield over an L shield is that it's significantly lighter. You say it's always worth going to an L shield because M+HC is worse in HP, maybe this is the case (more on that later) but the point is that for that 95t you could probably build out a good part of a fully equipped construct, allowing you to have a quicker, more agile construct with a superior max speed, that's the upside.

 

Talking concretely in regards to the mass, if I made a competitive light-ish design with an M shield around 250t ( I don't have one on hand, this is probably on the lighter side after the changes). I'm going about 38-39k km/h max speed, just switching from an M shield to an L shield, I drop down to about 35k km/h. Now adding an extra 95t to a 250t design is probably going to seriously hurt my acceleration as well, so now I'm probably at least looking at redoing my engine setup, which likely adds some more mass as well.

So now the question is more along the lines of, do I prefer an extra 5mill HP from the L shield, or about 5000-6000km/h extra max speed and some extra rotation speed. Well that's a question I’d love feedback on, maybe the max speed and rotation speed isn't enough, I could see that.

 

Secondly there could be an advantage to being able to “modulate” your weight while still gaining some tankiness from honeycomb. An M shield with some honeycomb unlocks some venting on that design, while retaining some/most of the mobility.

 

In regards to your reasoning about M vs L shields. Roughly you're going from “it only makes sense to use the largest shield mass wise, so I can never vent on xs-m because I'm not going to be using voxels on anything smaller than the L”.

 

Well honestly, I don't particularly agree with that, at least not in theory. The interest of voxels is that it's scalable, and you can choose how much voxel you think you need. If you're going to use an M shield because that makes sense for your design mass wise, you don't “have” to use 95t of honeycomb. You can use 30t of a good hc over your ship. That's already going to give you a chunk of armor to help you get some venting going, and probably not endanger your cross-section too much. If that honeycomb buys you enough time for 2 vents (probably optimistic), then you’ve essentially caught up on an L shield in raw shield HP and you’re operating at more than half the mass. 

Now maybe that's not viable, maybe the honeycomb itself is too weak and even reasonable quantities of honeycomb get blown apart too quickly, that's possible and that's something we can look at. Perhaps at that point the subject is more that voxels are generally weak.

 

It's also important to note that in regards to your “real HP”, some amount of the incoming hits are also going to be hitting elements, elements that can be repaired which can give you more tankiness down the road. That means that when comparing raw HP to CCS, you have to take into account that CCS is counting every hit no matter where it's going, as opposed to your raw voxel HP which will, in effect, have additional health from elements.

 


For point 2, there's a couple things to say here. Shields are not inherently in competition with honeycomb, as mentioned we don't want them to be magnitudes apart in terms of HP because it wouldn't make sense, but fundamentally they are supposed to be complimentary.

 

Now in regards to your chart and conclusions. You didn't quite explain what “mean raw HP” is but I can guess it's the actual HP value of the deployed m3 HC multiplied by the average resistance, or at least I get close enough to your numbers using that.


Internally, in our tests using real ships CCS almost always goes first as opposed to the direct destruction of the core, I’d say in general this is situational depending on the design of the ship. In my experience, when constructs actually have a good amount of voxels, it's very difficult to dig your way to the core, and between the HC and the elements and the (occasional, hopefully fewer and fewer) lost shot, I believe that most of the time, you can count on your CCS HP being your “real” HP bar.  If that's not the case, especially on ships that have a good amount of HC, I’d love to see/hear more about it, since that would be contrary to what we’ve tested. Perhaps certain voxels are outliers.

 

My gut feeling is that in the “nano-age” during which CCS was introduced and voxels were rebalanced, people haven't been using voxels a ton in pvp. The goal is for that to change and honestly, if people start using voxels in some quantity, that's already good progress. If it does come out that cheaper voxels, or certain cheap voxels are always way better than more expensive voxels, I'll be more than happy to take a look at that (and to be honest, I’ve started already since I had to look at a bunch of stuff for this).

Lastly on this, you’ve defined that plastic is the best material on the basis of it having the most “mean HP” for the mass. That may be the case, but seeing how much effort players have put into reducing cross-section at almost any cost, I don't think 6700 m3 of plastic is always going to be the best solution.

 


For the last point in regards to venting, I feel like I’ve partly answered the question already but I’ll answer more broadly. Venting isn't something that will or needs to be used. It's a tool at your disposal and it's up to you to figure out how and when you're going to use it depending on the situation and the design of your ship. In contrast it's our job to make sure that those avenues can exist in the game.

 

In view of that, lighter ships now can try to disengage using their speed and try to get away and disengage to vent and come back, some ships may have honeycomb to tank on the CCS, some ships may not be able to reliably vent. If you design your ship in such a way that it cannot vent, then that's on you. However, if it is the case that there are NO competitive designs that allow you to vent at all, I agree that's a problem we need to change.

 

It will come down to the design of your ship, and it's possible that venting will be more usable in certain situations, and certain circumstances than others. For example, I don't expect smaller and lighter ships to have enough CCS/voxels to tank more than a couple hits (let alone all the elements that will die on a compact design) so if they can't escape the firepower using their speed/agility, they are likely dead. But who knows, it might be worth it now to dedicate some amount of HC on ships, specifically to be able to tank a handful of shots to get some shield HP back, even if you don't manage a full cycle off.

 

Essentially from my perspective, if you go no honeycomb, you are accepting that venting is going to be a tougher proposal than if you had dedicated some mass to HC protection, there's a tradeoff there. Now maybe that tradeoff isn't balanced, and there's one obvious better choice than the other, in that case we will take a look (that was sort of what was happening up to 0.29, there wasn't much point to using HC, but I think between the shield mass and health changes,  and the speed changes, HC could have merit again in at least some designs, but maybe it's not enough).

 

For an example on a relatively light design, even just 100m3 of that grade 5 titanium is going to give you around 1.2milll CCS health for 4-5~ extra tonnes. Is that enough to tank serious damage for a while? No, probably not. Is it enough to absorb a couple hits as you try to pull out of range, get your transversal speed up and start venting some HP back, probably yes. The downside is your cross-section may suffer and you'll lose some speed (honestly the speed loss won't be much, even at the most severe parts of the speed curve). Is it worth it? I’d say so yeah, in some designs and some situations, especially now that heavy L ships can’t easily rotate to keep up with smaller constructs, having a slightly larger cross-section probably isn't such a big deal in certain scenarios now.

 

To be fair in regards to that point, I agree that on lighter and more compact constructs, the damage dealt to elements will sometimes be what ends up killing you rather than CCS, or even the core being killed. If you take a nasty hit that blows up half your elements, you are essentially dead. My question is are you able to use some HC, to reduce the chances of a good hit taking you out of the fight entirely.

 

I did a quick test, put up 50m3 of grade 5 titanium and blasted it with a fully talented laser L. It took 3 shots to get through and kill the core I had placed  just behind the material. To be honest though, based on my hit chance on a totally immobile target with zero cone or range issue, I would actually expect an actual S design to take almost 0 damage from L weapons. The shield and the CCS at that point is more of an insurance policy for the occasional hit, or to fight off other smaller constructs.

 

There's also something to be said about balancing cross-section vs compactness. Not having all your elements in the same spot, even on smaller designs, means a single shot has less chance to obliterate half your elements.

 


Anyway, I'm just spitballing on a lot of things, I certainly don't have all the answers, and likely there's some things I’ve missed, or some things I've overestimated the importance of or underestimated the importance of.

 

 

Now to address your “problems to be solved” directly as a conclusion of sorts.

 

   Point 1: In regards to this point, if people start using any honeycomb at all it’ll be a good direction. Once we get to the point where we’re saying “we’re using HC and these honeycombs are all clearly better than these honeycomb”, we will be in a good place to start addressing HC internal balancing. The second thing is I do currently believe that especially on larger ships, CCS is a better representation of health than raw HP, and this is likely the opposite on smaller ships.

 

   Point 2: I‘m not totally set on this. Unplayable seems like a strong word here. I think lighter, smaller constructs have more opportunities now to disengage from fights in order to vent, or potentially exploit larger ships' slow rotation to stay out of the cone of the guns. Additionally, in my mind, some honeycomb can be a valuable addition to smaller designs, to give yourself some room to vent. However, If this isn't enough, we could explore more powerful and quicker vents for smaller shields, that's certainly a possibility.

 

   Point 3: Maybe, I’ve gotten some info by looking into it again today, and it's possible some changes can come down the line on this. In the past we’ve had the opposite issues, so it's possible we went too far.

 


I know this is a big blob, I hope my numbers were right, my brain is a little hazy, and hopefully I’ve answered most of your questions and made this a little clearer for you guys.

 

 

Thanks.
 

I'm going to bite tounge on my thoughts on this subject for now and just say thank you for the response Entropy. I'll always applaud the dev team jumping in direct communication like this. Keep it coming mate!

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really appreciate the detailed reply.  It sounds like pvp ships are destined to remain tiny little blobs with no design flexibility.  My M core only has 45t of voxel and is already considered too heavy in athena.  I feel like we have all this design freedom in DU but in pvp its squeezed into a thimble.  

 

I like that you appear to want 'some' honeycomb to be used.  but as primarily a ship builder, building pvp ships at the moment is dead in the water. 

Venting should be a tool that gives arnoured ships an advantage because they can tank more damage but are easier to hit...but at the moment having armour is such a disadvantage (especially on m cores that become too easy to hit by exotic L weapons if they are armoured/bigger) that the benefit venting brings is insignificant.  

 

DU has miles to go to make pvp work imo and NQ are moving 1mm at a time. 

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I must admit that a post like this was what I would have liked to see before, being able to speak with devs and understand your vision is important but also being aware that you are reading and analyzing our feedback. Thx for that.
 

From my point of view; the speed limitation equation by the mass of the ships need to be less rude, to allow to have competitive ships with some voxel and a skin/identity, not just a stack of elements, your orientation pushes too much to lose all what is best designed in DU: the construction and the voxel.
 

Shields should be limited by core size; Shield L for core L only, M for core L and M etc..
 

I sent a TTK video test to Deckard regarding tanking a ship with voxel and taking the whole box of an L core, it dies in 20 seconds with a good focus, during a fleet fight with 100% hitrate from anywhere, having ships with so many weaknesses (large cross section, slow, expensive in HC and elements ...) which become throwable and it's clearly not a solution. You need a real balance, the small ships are very powerful due to the misses, weapon damage are really too high for allowing another meta if you change anything.

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I feel like voxels is still useless.
Venting any ships I fly while under attack is not possible at all

 

 

image.thumb.png.f8743f911b3768f9bfde9bf412119e05.png

image.png.641905b32fd0723f85f47c56b6b99b1f.png

Look at this ship for example. It was before Athena, but this design is still usable I believe for some cases (But for most of PvP I'll probably use lighter ships)

This is an M core with an L shield, around 12g acceleration after Athena weight changes and 6 mounted M weapons (probably will switch to 4 rails + 2 stasis as we can link 4 rails to one seat now)

This is a great example because it's fully (I mean literally, there is only small cockpit carved out for gunner seats) filled with tier 4 voxels (fluorine) (Thats something around 1600m3)
Even though its tier 4 voxels, this have zero chance of venting or even surviving more than few hits after shield is down, so those voxels are much more cosmetics than actual armor.
Adding more voxels will only make this ship weaker because it will increase cross section and lower the effectiveness of shield HP (which is still huge if you count in resistances, compared to voxels)

And that's a ship with an L shield, a heavy one! This and anything smaller have zero benefits from voxels in actual pvp engagement.

And I still don't see any reason to use big bulky slow ships that are much more expensive, than to use 10 small cheap M railgun fighters that I can lose every day and don't care about them.

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Entropy, are you saying that under testing ships with 5-20mil EHP of voxel tanked until their core stress value was reached? Or are you talking about ships with 30-40mil+ EHP in the voxel?

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for the exhaustive reply Entropy.

To weigh in, I think the major changes implemented in Athena are so extensive that it's too early to start making claims about the new balance and meta. We should probably let the dust settle before advocating for any further rebalancing. That said, considering shields were so heavily nerfed, it might turn out that heavier, more expensive voxels could use a buff.

 

If someone is willing to spend more quanta and sacrifice max speed and acceleration to achieve a very tanky ship, I would hope that it would be a viable option. At the same time I hope voxel buffs wouldn't increase effective hp/time-to-kill of armored ships to such an extent that it becomes an issue of "did I bring enough ammo/do I have enough time to actually kill this guy?" Because that's a pretty boring meta.

 

Rather than directly buff the hp values and resistances of voxel armor, I think it would be more fun to add a different mechanic that brings value to armor. For example to add a deflection chance based on angle-of-impact to voxel slopes. In this way, armored ships could build with the design philosophy of modern tanks, which rely on both thickness and angle-of-impact to deflect the energy of shots rather than absorbing all of the force directly.

 

A successful deflection could reduce the damage from a hit by half or something. The game could even take into account the damage type of the attack, with different voxel types being more likely to deflect different damage types. This system could lend more complexity to armored ship design, while at the same time requiring skill from pvp pilots to use their armor effectively by presenting the best face of their ship to an attacking enemy. Victory through design, knowledge, and skill rather than just having more stats than the enemy. It would even be helpful in discouraging the ugly shoe-box ship designs that we're used to seeing. It would also leave room to outplay your enemy with a smaller ship by outmaneuvering them to achieve a better attack angle. But I have no idea if such a complicated system could be implemented without causing server issues.

Edited by TobiwanKenobi
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Thank you Entropy for the response which was sincerely unexpected 

This gave a good boost to some of my mates who rushed to do some tests and shoot videos.
I think they will answer you on the various questions and subjects that you leave open for discussion and will share them all with you soon.

As for me, give me a few days to reread everything several times and continue to react to this constructive exchange.

 

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On 5/3/2022 at 4:27 PM, Cobqlt said:

I must admit that a post like this was what I would have liked to see before, being able to speak with devs and understand your vision is important but also being aware that you are reading and analyzing our feedback. Thx for that.
 

From my point of view; the speed limitation equation by the mass of the ships need to be less rude, to allow to have competitive ships with some voxel and a skin/identity, not just a stack of elements, your orientation pushes too much to lose all what is best designed in DU: the construction and the voxel.
 

Shields should be limited by core size; Shield L for core L only, M for core L and M etc..
 

I sent a TTK video test to Deckard regarding tanking a ship with voxel and taking the whole box of an L core, it dies in 20 seconds with a good focus, during a fleet fight with 100% hitrate from anywhere, having ships with so many weaknesses (large cross section, slow, expensive in HC and elements ...) which become throwable and it's clearly not a solution. You need a real balance, the small ships are very powerful due to the misses, weapon damage are really too high for allowing another meta if you change anything.

 

100%.  So with Athena update I did think 'Well we will need siege ships' mainly for attacking Alien cores but the result of that would be any defenders who are more mobile, easier to turn would eat that L core up fast because CCS is still poor and even voxel HP overall is still poor.  What I thought with their 'fix announced' on the calculations that CCS/HP would perhaps be tweaked so voxel is more effective especially considering weapons damage overall has drastically increased with previous updates.  I think I envisioned even in a fleet fight there would be 'tanks/capitol ships', then the rest.  It is still lending itself to even smaller ships than M cores now for speed but equally they can still do a reasonable amount of DPS.

 

Point i'm making is you should be rewarded for using Voxel armour not hindered by weight CCS etc'

 

Honvik

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi, Entropy

First of all, thank you again for answering in such a complete way on these precise subjects.
Even if we did not necessarily have the same desires, knowing the motivation and orientation of the modifications and additions you make to the game will allow us to be more relevant in our remarks.
I will therefore try to dig into the subject now that I have taken a few days back, and that we have seen the fleets forming and more in-game testing as well.

The objective of this post is not to contradict your vision of the game, but to help you make the necessary changes to make it happen.

Here is the feedback I can give you on the subjects for which you have requested comments.


I would have liked to detail 3 subjects but I did not have time so I will focus on 2 points only.

-----
 

On 5/3/2022 at 11:21 AM, NQ-Entropy said:

 

So now the question is more along the lines of, do I prefer an extra 5mill HP from the L shield, or about 5000-6000km/h extra max speed and some extra rotation speed. Well that's a question I’d love feedback on, maybe the max speed and rotation speed isn't enough, I could see that.

 


Here is a chart for the speed we need to achieve when spinning around an in-game target to avoid targeting.


Image

It is the calculation of the rope resulting from the angle (tracking of the weapon) and the distance where the target is. I arbitrarily retained 4 values:
- 50km
- 100km
- 200 km (1su)
- 400 km (2su)
The tracking being in deg/s I transformed the distance obtained in m into km/h to make it more meaningful.
 

- The first line is an example for a tracking of 1deg/s
- The second is the value I have on a siege guner with my character (talent at 4)
- The third line is the value of the biggest weapon in the game that should hypothetically have the most difficulty aiming at a target and it is the talentless value to symbolize the worst case.

- The last line is a spin test with an M railgun battleship. In 10 seconds I have time to do a 360 + stabilize my aim on a target.

Remember that the rate of fire of an M railgun is 13 seconds without talent, which leaves a comfortable margin of maneuver to align its target between 2 shots.

Here is also the visual of the rail gun firing cone.
30° cone radius in optimal + 30° cone in fallof.
The further away your target is, the more area you cover to be able to hit it.

Image

Here is a table to symbolize the distances covered by a railgun without the ship needing to move :

Image

With the talents on a weapon we reach a fairly huge coverage, almost 90° without fall off and almost 180° with him and that on a basic weapon without cone bonus and talents not max at lvl5.

(The choice of railgun as an example is arbitrary, this is valid for all weapons, not take this for a nerf/up request.)

Here are the issues raised (in my sole opinion) :
- The penalty linked to the tracking of weapons is valid at very short range.
- Tracking is possible if your opponent is not moving or at low speed
- If you are attacked by an opponent further away than the one you are moving arround, you will not benefit from your speed bonus to avoid shots
- Desynchronization has a strong impact on your positioning and that of your opponent, it opens or closes shooting windows independently of the players' game.
- We still have M or L size combat ships that can do 360° in less than 10 seconds, which still allows near-hand tracking using the adjusters.
 

If your opponent is far from you, the more easily he can kill you.

That's why we think going for the shield is always better. It protects you against several hazards over which your speed has no control.

-----
 

On 5/3/2022 at 11:21 AM, NQ-Entropy said:

If you are intending to make a larger, heavier construct, that is going to trend towards or go past the max mass, then the large shield becomes the obvious choice. However, should you want to make something smaller, more agile, and quicker, you may start to use shields of smaller sizes. We already see people experimenting with constructs of smaller sizes using S and M shields to take advantage of the speed, this is a great direction, as long as the pendulum does not swing too far in the favor of smaller constructs.

Now, if the weight penalties do not sufficiently affect the design of the ship, and large shields are still too mass effective even on smaller designs. That's a subject we will continue to address. We do not want to see S designs using exclusively L shields because the additional mass from larger shields doesn't matter in regards to acceleration, max speed, and rotation speed.

 


From the first returns, we can see a very large majority of small ships (but based on M or L cores rather than S or XS).

Especially a lot of small ships with an L size shield.
 

Here is a comparison of what we find in game compared to the possibility offered :

Image

 

On the previous meta we were with ships which for the biggest approached 5% of the total construction surface that a builder had the leisure to use.
We went to Athena and now we have M ships that hardly exceed 3% of the cumulative surface of the usable box.
 

There is certainly a lever to exploit on this subject at the level of the nature of the game. The voxel and the voxel construction seems to remain a main pillar of dual universe. We necessarily need small vessels and large vessels. But shouldn't the small ships be on an XS and S core category, and the larger ones on the much more massive M and L cores? (category of vessel damaged from the voxel massive nerve).

-----
 

On 5/3/2022 at 11:21 AM, NQ-Entropy said:

 

There's also something to be said about balancing cross-section vs compactness. Not having all your elements in the same spot, even on smaller designs, means a single shot has less chance to obliterate half your elements.

 


Just quickly on this subject.
 

I started looking to make a ship with spacing between different elements so as not to lose everything on the first try.
 

The areas of effect and the damage are so important compared to the current resistance of the voxels that even using a full block (so no interior in your ship).
The surface needed to just spread the weapons apart does not compensate (or very little) for the increased chance of hitting given by the cross section.
Since the voxel gives you a weight penalty, we always come back in the case where we seek to maximize the cross section.

 

On 5/3/2022 at 11:21 AM, NQ-Entropy said:

 

Essentially from my perspective, if you go no honeycomb, you are accepting that venting is going to be a tougher proposal than if you had dedicated some mass to HC protection, there's a tradeoff there. Now maybe that tradeoff isn't balanced, and there's one obvious better choice than the other, in that case we will take a look (that was sort of what was happening up to 0.29, there wasn't much point to using HC, but I think between the shield mass and health changes,  and the speed changes, HC could have merit again in at least some designs, but maybe it's not enough).

 

 

I think you can try without too much risk to improve the defensive aspect of the voxels a little.
You still implanted a triple nerve:
- Significant reduction in voxel HP
- Added CSS
- Weapon DPS buff
 

In my opinion the CSS has a good balance, it will be necessary to look more on the side of the damage of weapons and voxels.
For the voxels maybe not the HP pool, but why not look into the resistor values.

-----
 

I will end with a question.
 

Would you like to have the help of the community for all things HP of the elements?
 

There are a number of elements in play currently with quite unbalanced health points.
 

I know that for the Dev team it must be tedious to review everything and that you certainly have better things to do.
 

Can we help on this subject?
 

I already have a few examples in mind. Like decoration plants having more points than weapons.
Or very heavy armored doors but with less hit points than hatches.

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Some ideas after reading all long posts.

 

hit chance

The calculations from Kinght-Sevy are right. Max speed is unimportant all what's matter is cross section. In the actual way the hit chance is calculated it's constricts the ship building a lot. For this reason +  static shild hp are ships getting smaller and smaller. Why not brake this chain and use a newer solution. The hit chance depends not on the cross section but on the target construct max speed. In this way you can build a light nimble fighter with high max speed and low chance to be hitted, which can use light voxel for design purposes. A bulky heavy ship with a lot of voxel has a lower max speed and gets hit more. The work for the dev team is manageable because it's only need the change one "formula". But it has an big impact on the way to build ships. It will make it possible to build better looking ships in pvp. Like to old gold skull from BOO.

 

voxel hp

In the actual build voxel are a lot to squishy for pvp.  A L or M weapon do holes in m^3. If you want enough "armor" of a higher tier voxel (for venting time) you need meters wide walls of voxel. Thats ugly, push your cross section to much and lowers your max speed. Additionally it's creates a lot server load for voxel deformation. On the other hand there is a need on light pretty voxel for buildings and pve ships. Why not divide Voxel in pve and pvp voxel ? New armor voxel could be exterm stabile (high hp and ressi) so that there is no need for big walls. On the downside they are high expensive and have a very high mass. Think of a m^3 in one voxel. This should avoid meter wide walls of armor and lowers the server load, because of less deformation. It fits with the new max speed. Armored ships with a high mass are slower. All what is needed are new voxel or the change of the stats of some existing voxel. A manageable task for the dev team. Some numbers in the data base fix this problem.

 

Edit:

Coupling the hit chance on the target max speed buffs the slow weapons. They lower the max speed and rise the chance to hit the target.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Minor update and clarification.
 

We had a battle on one of the alien cores.
 

In addition to the general issues raised and unresolved:
- No protective bubble around alien cores for other spatial or dynamic cores. What prevents players from truly establishing bases and controlling territory
- Ridiculously short 24-hour timer, you have to have a player who connects EVERY day to check whether or not he is attacked. This can deprive you of the entire player base and small group that can only play on weekends or a few days a week.
- The alert mechanism is non-existent. All members of the organization should have an alert window when they connect "UI"
 

Now that these 3 major subjects have been highlighted, we can come back to the subject of balancing.
 

Everything went exactly as planned.
 

Ships with optimized cross section and large L shields DOMINATE the battlefield.
Ships not respecting the cross section optimization were annihilated.
 

We are still on an M or L ship scheme having the XS fighter size.
 

As we are running faster and faster towards the release, we would really like to know if the change debates on your big answer from a few weeks ago will come before this one?
 

Also do you need the help of the community to list the elements with an unbalanced number of hit points?
 

We can help you.

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The best way to address this is to massively increase both voxel and element HP, while leaving CCS the same. Removing or changing cross section is not a good idea. It is one of the few engineering limitations in the game, and it does double duty of both providing a constraint to optimize around, and something you need to take into account when piloting. If it is changed to something like ship max speed, you no longer need to care about correctly piloting your ship, and the game loses a lot of depth.

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On 5/31/2022 at 9:00 PM, Nayropux said:

The best way to address this is to massively increase both voxel and element HP, while leaving CCS the same. Removing or changing cross section is not a good idea. It is one of the few engineering limitations in the game, and it does double duty of both providing a constraint to optimize around, and something you need to take into account when piloting. If it is changed to something like ship max speed, you no longer need to care about correctly piloting your ship, and the game loses a lot of depth.

Relevant things have already been advanced by many other players for a better system than the cross section in PvP.

A signature of the ship could be determined according to the elements and voxel present on the core.
We give a value for each and you have your chance of hitting.
It will also be much easier to balance in the future and will avoid many setbacks.

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1 hour ago, Knight-Sevy said:

Relevant things have already been advanced by many other players for a better system than the cross section in PvP.

A signature of the ship could be determined according to the elements and voxel present on the core.
We give a value for each and you have your chance of hitting.
It will also be much easier to balance in the future and will avoid many setbacks.

That only addresses cross section at build time. But the other thing cross section does is change how you pilot your ship. I have not seen a single suggestion that retains the piloting aspect of cross section, i.e. you want to orient your ship a certain way to minimize it. In every other suggestion I have seen, the orientation of your ship no longer matters, and so that gameplay depth is removed.

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6 hours ago, Nayropux said:

That only addresses cross section at build time. But the other thing cross section does is change how you pilot your ship. I have not seen a single suggestion that retains the piloting aspect of cross section, i.e. you want to orient your ship a certain way to minimize it. In every other suggestion I have seen, the orientation of your ship no longer matters, and so that gameplay depth is removed.

 

You contradict yourself on that.
Anyway to shoot at a target you have to look at it from the front.
So you will always be looking to make the same placement whether or not you have a cross section system.

Your piloting argument is unfortunately not one.

________________________________________________________________________
 

Anyway let's not get the wrong idea. The purpose of this topic is not that the cross section be removed. NQ will never want to admit the failure of this vision of gameplay.
 

So we are here to make their vision come true.
All my demonstrations aim to show that currently it does not work and that we need some modifications.
 

NQ-Entropy has identified a few points that they will work on I think:

- They don't want S ships not to exclusively use L shields. This is currently the case so they seem to still want to make weight adjustments.

- They want an M shield to allow venting once or twice in a fight. For the moment with the armor of voxels and the TKK of weapons this is clearly not possible, they certainly risk modifying these values.

- He also must have seen as he spoke about it that the difference in speed (V max and radial speed) is not enough to really reduce the chances of a hit (what always has an effect is the cross section). Maybe they'll also make adjustments to make moving ships really hard to hit.

- He seems to have enough distance now on the fact that the voxels are rather weak. I think we are entitled to expect an up for them.

- On his message he says that the Nano era seems balanced. From what we can see in game this is still not the case. And we continuously have L and M ships that are smaller than the XS ship build box.

- He also points out that the cheap voxels are more interesting than the more expensive ones. For me it is an undeniable fact. T4 or T5 voxels are not worth their crafting time/cost. I hope that eventually NQ will understand it too.

- He also talks about the use of venting. Currently the only venting is almost done by nano ships that leave the venting battlefield and come back into the mix. It's a feat if a ship with voxel manages to get its 2nd venting. But balancing voxel HP will surely help balance that.
 

- At one point he says L ships have trouble turning for all smaller/faster ships. Currently with the nano ships M and L it is completely false. I hope they will reconsider their positions.

 

- I couldn't answer about compacting a ship. But moving the elements away increases the cross section and therefore causes the ship to take more damage than what the ship has gained in hit points in voxel volume. (the voxels have too little hp and the weapons hit too hard).

________________________________________________________

=> In short, you can see that there are a lot of points that have been discussed.
I am patiently waiting for the balance at this level. There may be changes that will make the game playable in PvP without touching your sacred cross section even if this one is certainly one of the worst game design mistakes of the game in my humble opinion.

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4 hours ago, Knight-Sevy said:

- At one point he says L ships have trouble turning for all smaller/faster ships. Currently with the nano ships M and L it is completely false. I hope they will reconsider their positions.

 Gotta jump in here. I brought a bigger battleship lately to an Alien Core defense. Apart from radars not working I had a hard time turning my ship into the direction of the enemy, as they nerfed adjustors and turning for bigger, heavier ships to a degree that makes larger ships being involved in combat almost unreasonable. It takes me about 40+ seconds to turn a ship around, over 20s just to turn by 90°.

Nano is one thing, but that doesn't include all L cores. And the bigger battleship I brought, with it's 50mil CCS, is meant to voxel tank and survive multiple vents (rare active shield), so I think it very much fits into the overarching topic.

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30 minutes ago, Metsys said:

 Gotta jump in here. I brought a bigger battleship lately to an Alien Core defense. Apart from radars not working I had a hard time turning my ship into the direction of the enemy, as they nerfed adjustors and turning for bigger, heavier ships to a degree that makes larger ships being involved in combat almost unreasonable. It takes me about 40+ seconds to turn a ship around, over 20s just to turn by 90°.

Nano is one thing, but that doesn't include all L cores. And the bigger battleship I brought, with it's 50mil CCS, is meant to voxel tank and survive multiple vents (rare active shield), so I think it very much fits into the overarching topic.


 

Thanks for the intervention.

Honestly I don't think there's any change there again. It is already the reduction effort that there has been.
But this allows me to add a line to this table.

 

So in 80 seconds you have time to do a 360. => 360/80 => 4,5 deg => 0,08 rad

image.png.69deb4f411ea85f95e270ba72dea1780.png
 

I don't think it's a real handicap.

Not to mention that you are rarely alone, and only one other L ship will make nearly a One Shot on an XS/S shield 2 Su away.
 

And even if we're here to really say oh wow boy the heavy ships with voxels are really unplayable and can't fire.
Admit that it will still be an advantage in favor of the ship nano without voxel...


___________________

 

50mil CSS, It's quite small i find.
A player's L ship (+ their Geforce account) can quite easily go into the 200,000 DPS range.
(in any case 1player corresponds to that on our side, maybe slightly less now that we release more railguns, but it simplifies the calculations and is very close to reality).

I'm not sure it can reach 2 venting with 50mil.
Either way a ship will likely be out of combat with its armaments before it reaches half that value.

 

But hey, this subject of rotation is only one detail among many others.
 

There are much more impactful points that can be changed. And that seems to have a much more pronounced global consensus for them.
 

To choose only one I would like at first that we obtain a real value of armor at the voxel, and maybe that the hp of the elements is also revisited, to see reduce the damage of the weapons now that there is a maximum limitation that can have a core with CSS.

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