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How to give L-cores more relevancy in the current PvP meta.


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Currently L-cores aren't an attractive option to use in pvp. This is because:

  1. L-cores have less dps than M and S cores against standard cross sections. (L-cores don't exceed the dps of M-cores of the same weapon type until the target is above ~1600m² cross section)
  2. L-cores have less mobility due to their weapons and ammo being heavier.
  3. L-cores have less effective shield hp due to their guns being larger in cross section.
  4. L-cores cost more to build, warp, and operate than smaller ships.

 I've thought of a few ideas to address some of these shortcomings.


  1. To give L weapons more offensive clout without making them too strong, increase their alpha strike damage. Double their hit damage, but also double cycle time. This allows them to better take advantage of brief opportunities to land a hit and improves their ability to focus fire with many L-cores on a single target and attempt to eliminate it in one salvo, which would make them scary in large numbers. For example: a maxed damage exotic L railgun would do 505k damage per hit rather than the current 253k, but would fire every 19.4 seconds rather than the current 9.7 seconds. This might sound scary, but considering the low chance to hit of L weapons, the actual alpha damage would usually only be 1-2 hits of a salvo. (L ammo mass and volume values would also have to be doubled so that L-cores don't gain a ton of value in ammo efficiency and magazine size. Though maybe that might not be so bad.)
  2. To increase L-core utility, give L guns the ability to knock ships around; their hits apply torque to targets. This knocks the target off course and disrupts the steadiness of their aim which could make them lose dps by exceeding optimal tracking values. These pushes shouldn't be so strong that the target can't even fly - just small bumps that shove their orientation by 1-5 degrees in a random direction. In this way L-cores would be good support fire. You couldn't ignore them. L-cannons especially, with their higher rate of fire, would continuously knock around targets.
  3. Give L-cores more value from voxels. Give them a solid bonus to voxel hp and ccs - maybe +25-50%. This allows them to be tanky in a different way than smaller ships. (NOTE: I do see a problem with this - players could build on a L dynamic core and fit it with M-guns. I can't think of a way to solve that besides removing the ability to fit down-sized guns on larger cores. It makes things complicated by allowing L-cores to be too versatile - able to fit point defense S-cannons to deal with S-cores that get too close rather than having to rely on S-core support ships to drive them away, etc.)


I think these changes could give L-cores a niche on the battlefield without taking away from the roles of other ship sizes. L-cores would be a powerful support dps tool - one that is difficult to remove from the battlefield.

Edited by TobiwanKenobi
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We agree that L cores need a buff. But these still viable on a fight on an Alien core what they need is a way to protect radars since rng goes first to radars and you can only repair them a few times.

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Game's been all over the place for pvp balance. NQ wants a diversity of designs and sizes in combat in an "everything's relevant" kind of way but they keep trying to generally tweak the broad rules/numbers to make it happen instead of adding new stuff. 


Meta was XS/S core cubes at beta-launch, so they removed the radar restrictions and restricted weapons that it was based around,

then it was L core bricks because it was possible to make them effectively too heavy to kill with a repair crew going, so they added cross-section, and then ccs, shields, and tardis-ammo,

then it was L core SNES cartridges because there wasn't a good reason to not have a wall of guns that outrange everything else propelled by a wall of engines that outran everything else,

and now with the weight-speed cap its S core USB of doom, because cross-section lets it relatively out-dps everything else while light weight lets it out-run everything else.


As for the changes proposed here... 

-Giving L weapons higher alpha with the same dps would help diversify things a bit by encouraging fighters to try and get under its guns, but the S-fighters are already the meta for the moment...
-L weapons getting to knock things around would be amusing, but short of meme-ably egregious kicking capacity it probably wont do much of anything long term,

-CSS has needed to apply differently to different cores from the get-go, letting larger constructs have a higher CSS cap would go a long way there, but only in defensive scenarios,

To sum it up, I don't think these changes alone will change the balance/meta much, if at all.



Unfortunately there aren't a lot of great options to achieve the desired balance that don't involve adding a lot of stuff. The simplest way to do things I can think of would be:
-A power-system added to allow for element-balance-tweaks and to help nerf the ability to have the best acceleration/speed and the best cross-section and the biggest shield all on one ship for any given size (speed/cross-section need to be incompatible with oversized shields).
-CCS modified (as you suggested) so that bigger ships can have more effective armor than their smaller counterparts,
-Weapons/cross-section modified so that in pvp the best thing to kill a ship (or ships) is a ship one core size larger,

-A capacity buff/nerf to gunner-seats applied in a way that encourages matching the core-size to weapon-size (make an M core with M weapons require a smaller crew than an identical L core with M weapons),
-The addition of tiny, short range, fast reloading L missile-launcher (call them torpedos or bombs)  that can only be fit to XS ships, and makes a few of them the best thing to kill an L core with,
-The addition of a basic set of reference info in a weapon's listed stats (when inspected on the market) on the weapon's hit chance vs cross-section so that we aren't pissing off all the new players by not informing them that anti-L weapons will miss so often against xs targets as to be less useful than XS or S weapons.

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Believe it or not, L cores are actually still quite good. In fact, for one part of the game they are still easily "the best": large, coordinated, fleet fights where you need an absolute ton of EHP. L weapons are the only kind that have enough HP to sustain fire. Unfortunately, these are extremely rare, and so the opportunity to use them doesn't really take place. Of course, you have been on the receiving end of some of this recently, so you might understand why exactly L cores are so strong.


Personally I think idea 1 will make L cores worse in their role. Idea 2 is interesting and could be quite fun. For idea 3 I don't think this bonus should be only L cores. I really do think all voxel HP needs nearly 10x'd, along with similar improvements in element HP. This is so the meta tends towards active venting gameplay as opposed to dying right after the shield goes down.

Edited by Nayropux
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  • 3 months later...

Today I would like to highlight the issue related to section calculations on ships with a highlighting of the various topics that talk about it.

The community has been raising this issue for many months or years.

Despite the consensus that some things need to be done: Nothing has been done.

We have long been in a gloomy silence.

I don't mean to insult the NQ devs, I know they work hard.
We have only one culprit on the head within this studio who seems to deliberately block this subject with his only approval and let it be said: he has nothing to do with PvP.

We are in a voxel construction game!


Is it that hard to understand ?!


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