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 Author Darkspace Idea/Opinion Submission Thread
Rain of Fire [O-XII]
Grand Admiral

Joined: May 18, 2011
Posts: 71
From: South of Klaus, 14,000 gu from Insanity and 3,000 from Desperation.
Posted: 2023-05-05 05:32   
Hello, it is I. I've decided to try my hand at coding the game and would like opinions on the game mechanics.

What I need is simple:

Play the game.
Pay attention to what you like about the mechanics and what you don't.
Tell me these things, either here or on discord.


My dream goal is that DarkSpace can have the low player/solo/PvE/PvP experience improved enough that we can draw people back. Or, at the very least, fix the most annoying current problems with the game.


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On 2012-11-06 20:23, Tael wrote:
\"Depends who you asked... Praetorian, KC, a few others, and myself use to sit in the lobby and talk out the game...

Convinced more than one new person initially this was a text game. \"

MicoolTNT
Marshal

Chatting in 'DarkSpace English'

Joined: February 18, 2012
Posts: 8
Posted: 2023-05-05 07:02   
TL;DR: Remove AI missile ships, make ALL carriers default to cannon/attack fighters. NO carriers with PD fighters BY DEFAULT.

Fixing the AI to make it more engaging and threatening would be the #1 way to fix the game IMO. So that it's not COMPLETELY dead boring and meaningless even while waiting for other human players, and in the best case, even becomes actively enjoyable as a pseudo-singleplayer/pseudo-cooperative game even while in lowpop - as you yourself said.

In the current state of the game, by now I know on sight which AIs can be disregarded as a threat (under most circumstances), and how to deal with the ones that can't be.

(I could write up a full breakdown of each role the AI can have, how (un)threatening it is, and how to deal with it, but that'd be pointlessly TL;DR and mostly just me indulging my love of overthinking, overanalysis, and reflection. Still, if there's interest, I could make that another post later.)

I believe the current AI being reliably beatable 1v1 by skilled, experienced players is an acceptable state of affairs. AIs should not be sealclubbing new players into the ground (or massively disrupting/imbalancing PvP fights between experienced players), and should be lenient enough to allow for a fairly relaxed farming experience, much like now.

However, there should NOT be AI ships that can be COMPLETELY IGNORED as a threat - this is both confusing to new players (as one Dreadnought/pair of Cruisers/wolfpack of 4 Destroyers is NOT equal to another, and can be MUCH more or less dangerous than another, what you see ISN'T what you get unless you're VERY familiar with the game) and makes AI waves with larger numbers of ineffective ships far more boring and unengaging than waves consisting mostly of combat-effective AI ships.

The bottom line immediate points, which I've suggested frequently in-game, and should be fairly possible to implement:

-Make it impossible for AIs to spawn as t1 missile ships (and t2 ships with missiles as their only offensive role). Missile ships are nearly completely unthreatening in the AI's hands, due to its "fly towards target" behavior being antithetical to the effective use of modern missiles.

-Make all carriers spawn with cannon fighters by default (rather than some defaulting to PD fighters). This will help both new players and the AI by giving them reliable, consistently damaging fighters. AIs with attack fighters are minorly to moderately threatening due to the sustained damage - even if their "fly towards target" behavior is stupid for carriers without secondary weapons - but AIs with PD fighters are completely unthreatening - are at best a nuisance to player carrier users, and make missile ships useless - which both DON'T need more nerfs.
[ This Message was edited by: MicoolTNT on 2023-05-25 10:11 ]
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Alex3huey
Fleet Admiral

Joined: July 31, 2010
Posts: 13
Posted: 2023-05-05 16:45   
MI, let me fight MI again!!
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SnipeDragon
Marshal
Palestar


Joined: January 03, 2005
Posts: 38
From: Texas, USA
Posted: 2023-05-07 17:33   
Quote:
On 2023-05-05 16:45, Alex3huey wrote:
MI, let me fight MI again!!



You asked for it, so have fun!
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Commando950
Fleet Admiral
The Intergalactic Border Patrol

Joined: September 14, 2012
Posts: 11
Posted: 2023-05-08 19:44   
It's definitely important to give the game AI a rework. I'm more interested in PVE elements or hanging around less player contested areas. Which again, while it may be strange, I'm not exactly some DarkSpace veteran by any means, so it's a lot more chill.

Carrier AI need a range at which they understand to stay back, and missile ships need to understand the concept of effective range with their missiles. Maybe you can code in an "AI minimum engagement range" for weapons or ships as well as new AI types for specific ships that act differently than the standard behavior. Specific missile and carrier behaviors would be very good. Carriers with ECM might could take advantage of that in their behavior? Lets see AI make tactical choices related to their ships more often!

I think it's also important to note that AI have trouble switching targets or focusing on important threats sometimes. How these enemies get aggro'd on certain "threats" seems to be pretty unreliable. Why go after the planet transport or engineer when you are being hit by a more serious threat? Also if they don't have a valid target they should switch faster to a new target and begin fighting. Some ships don't actually fire their weapons at you as they are having an existential crisis first and combat last. AI need to update their life priorities a little more often depending on what's going on because they seem very unaware of how much danger they are in and the actual value of their targets.

If I was to give a reason why AI improvements for new players would also be helpful is because it will put them through situations that test them before more serious and thought out player combat occurs. Seeing the AI correctly use their ships will teach players, "hey that's how you actually play with this kind of ship" or "oh I get it now!". Players won't get bored of combat because the AI will place them in situations that make them think about how they'll deal with that specific kind of threat as well.

Also rank locked pirates makes me sad in metaverse server, unless they are somewhere else not rank locked. I guess they are weaker in terms of other AI with their ships? Definitely has been a while since I seen pirates at all. That's not really a development complaint though or very serious, I just don't get to shoot pirates without 0 prestige(I think? Has been a while...) and I am big sad.

Platinum support is the worst medal I will ever need to get. If you open a dictionary and look up the word awful you'll see a picture of the platinum support medal. Plus I feel like even if I was in player populated sectors to help players, a lot of the times people don't want a repair ship, they want another dread or some ship that can help with fighting,capturing, or bombing. Could platinum support be dropped to 2000? It's still a grind to get to 2000 and it will keep players from being stuck in supply ships trying to get it forever. If I'm wrong and it's lower than 5000 units repaired already then the wiki needs to be updated on it's medals page.

Take my words with a grain of salt though, I'm not much of a PVP player or DarkSpace veteran and I don't speak for the majority of the community with all my opinions. It's just what I personally want. I wish the best for this game though and all it's neat creative ideas.
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MicoolTNT
Marshal

Chatting in 'DarkSpace English'

Joined: February 18, 2012
Posts: 8
Posted: 2023-05-11 04:38   
^ I don't disagree, but reworking the AI from its current fairly basic "fly towards/make attack runs on your target, shoot it, dodge certain weapons" behavior to "maintain engagement ranges" would be a longer, larger project.

TEMPORARILY disabling AI spawning as missile-only ships, and changing all carriers to never have PD fighters in their default loadouts, only attack or torpedo fighters, can be done with much simpler coding changes.

Also I have the complete opposite experience with supply ships, they're an incredible attrition advantage and can seriously, massively increase the endurance of a combat or bombing ship. I for one LOVE to have one, on the RARE occasion I have the focus to fight (rather than fly support myself) XD <3

When fighting AIs on friendly or neutral territory they're often not really necessary (though it can still be possible to get repair prestige by repairing damage dealt to allies by more effective enemy ships), but when supporting allies fighting under planetary guns (including stupid allied AI), or supporting bombing planets with strong defenses without ECM cover...
[ This Message was edited by: MicoolTNT on 2023-05-11 13:39 ]
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Jasper
Fleet Admiral
*Renegade Space Marines*


Joined: October 20, 2004
Posts: 15
From: Ontario, Canada
Posted: 2023-05-14 00:04   
hello
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Entil-Zha the Starkiller
Chief Marshal
Ravenous Wolfpack Clan


Joined: May 02, 2005
Posts: 261
From: Arizona - Where DST is a myth
Posted: 2023-05-14 07:28   
Had a brainstorm while in Luyten as VioletSoul was grinding supply...an ability of supply ships that I'm kinda left wondering why they weren't enabled before since the mechanics to do it already exist or possibly could be done.

Mind the fact this will shared by Supply Stations equivalents. Each side having a different version of some kind. As it is the supply//repair function is basically a cut & paste between sides & some benefit more than others.

Be aware this is a crude off-the-top-of-my-head summary...the idea is to make SUPPLY ships something useful in each of their unique ways & if adjustments are made right...they can help considerably while also making them a prized target that must be defended. Perhaps also make them a bit sturdier?


K'LUTH - ENERGY TRANSFER - K'luth ships are notorious for energy problems in combat. ELF weapons help & are effective up to cruisers w/ destroyers getting the most out of it. With Dreads the ELFs tend to be drops in a bucket. The supply ships have the ability to transfer their own energy to the target.

Intent is to augment the power of the target ship in combat and//or aid recovery enough to allow them to engage cloak to try slipping away or to jump. Achieving this however requires the target ship to manage their power use though.

DEVICE - A reversed version of the ELF beam (same duration) activated separately from the repair drones. Will be present on a matched 1 to 1 basis with the repair drones. This means the repair light repair ships can only do 1 target. While those with 2 or more can focus or split. 25 energy to use per device. Usage will immediately drain 25 power from the supply ship & continue to drain 5 energy per second for the duration of each beam. 45-60 second cooldown.

ENERGY//PRESTIGE GAIN RATE - 1000:1

Light supply - 1x reverse ELF beam (FORE, LEFT, RIGHT, AFT) aka Omnidirectional + 1 aux reactor

Medium - 2x reverse ELF beam (Both Omni) + 2 aux reactor

Heavy (has higher power reserve) - 2x reverse ELF (Both Omni) + 2 aux reactor

Supply Station - 3x reverse ELF (all Omni)

Command Station - 1x

=====

ICC - SHIELD REINFORCEMENT - Functions so the supply vessel is actively reinforcing the shields of the target. Amount being a set % based on the max shield HP value. ICC Supply Ships have ship-specific aux reactors that make 25% more power than standard ones. Like the K'luth the transfer will also work as a Transfer Over Time (TOT). The bigger the supplying ship the longer they can sustain the transfer (barring incoming damage).

DEVICE - A fast travelling condensed energy pulse that fires in a 3-pulse salvo that "super charges" the target's shield by initially sacrificing a portion of the supply vessels own shields. Initial cost 5% of max shield value + 2% per pulse applied to each target struck. IE this means 1 target hit...initial 5% drain. 2 hit, 10% drain. Etc. On activation the device pulses once.
Cooldown 45-60 seconds.

SHIELDS//PRESTIGE - 20,000 shield hp:1
(NOTE: I'm not familar with shield health values so the value given might need to be adjusted.)

Light supply - 1 pulse emiter

Medium - 2 pulse emitters + 1 aux reactor

Heavy - 3x + 2 aux reactor

Supply Station - 3x

Command Station - 1x

=====

UGTO - COMMISARY BRIBERY - Since this faction's ships already tend to have the most balanced power generation as they don't have a defense that requires power & their weapons only use moderate amounts, they do have the most robust armors. These take time to fix.

DEVICE - A direct communications device that is targeted @ the ship(s). Increases armor repair speed by 100% for 5 seconds. Repair crews are bribed to double their repair efforts @ the expense of ENERGY (poorly fed crews rushing to the food synthesizer after those repairs...double rations @ the buffet). 50 energy activation cost + 15 energy per second

Cooldown 45 - 60 seconds

ARMOR HP//PRESTIGE - 20,000:1
(NOTE: Like ICC shields some suitable exchange rate.)


Light supply - 1x repair crew voucher

Medium - 2x vouchers + 1 aux reactor

Heavy - 3x + 2 aux reactor

Supply Station - 3x

Command Station - 1x

[ This Message was edited by: Entil-Zha the Starkiller on 2023-05-14 16:20 ]
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\"Oh you could do that. And I could nail your head to the table, set fire to it,
and feed the charred remains to the Pak'ma'ra.\" - Capt. John Sheridan

  Email Entil-Zha the Starkiller
MicoolTNT
Marshal

Chatting in 'DarkSpace English'

Joined: February 18, 2012
Posts: 8
Posted: 2023-05-15 08:06   
Yes, please. ICC rep ships often feel useless or situational without deliberate player shield-offlining shenanigans, and I've often thought how cool it would be to be able to feed or be fed energy as both ICC and K'luth...

So, either seconding this idea and/or proposing energy transfer beams for everyone... <3
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Entil-Zha the Starkiller
Chief Marshal
Ravenous Wolfpack Clan


Joined: May 02, 2005
Posts: 261
From: Arizona - Where DST is a myth
Posted: 2023-05-16 01:15   
Energy transfer for everyone would be handy & would simplify making it work. ICC with ACTIVE shields tend to suffer some serious power issues as well. Shield reinforcement from an outside source would functionally be the same as a power transfer...except tht it is achieved w/o the target ship using it's own energy.

Would be great to make the supply role less of a clone & more unique to each faction.
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\"Oh you could do that. And I could nail your head to the table, set fire to it,
and feed the charred remains to the Pak'ma'ra.\" - Capt. John Sheridan

  Email Entil-Zha the Starkiller
MicoolTNT
Marshal

Chatting in 'DarkSpace English'

Joined: February 18, 2012
Posts: 8
Posted: 2023-05-16 01:25   
Also IDK what you mean "UGTO weapons only use moderate energy".

CANNONS only use moderate energy. UGTO beamboats and/or torpedo ships are nearly as at-risk of running out of energy as anyone else. Halbies defininitely have to watch their energy management.
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Entil-Zha the Starkiller
Chief Marshal
Ravenous Wolfpack Clan


Joined: May 02, 2005
Posts: 261
From: Arizona - Where DST is a myth
Posted: 2023-05-16 03:44   
Going by what I remember...UGTO ships ues alot of power yes but not quite as energy intensive as Kluth

So they too could get some energy boost then.
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\"Oh you could do that. And I could nail your head to the table, set fire to it,
and feed the charred remains to the Pak'ma'ra.\" - Capt. John Sheridan

  Email Entil-Zha the Starkiller
Azreal
Chief Marshal

Joined: March 14, 2004
Posts: 2816
From: United State of Texas, Houston
Posted: 2023-08-04 13:21   
I have no requests. Just observing that there are still a bunch of old farts wishing this game would live again.
And that is cool.



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Daisy
Grand Admiral

Joined: March 13, 2017
Posts: 23
Posted: 2023-08-14 00:38   
Infantry system has always had some issues with it that need improvement.

Infantry should avoid stacking up unless there's enemy infantry on the planet, with behavior to disperse to unoccupied cells to better resist bombing attacks. (so 1 bomb doesn't wipe out like 10 of them)

The logic for loading infantry needs a bit of improvement, as picking up the last of a stack selects the planet instead of the next available infantry unit.
Maybe the barracks could be used directly (like a starport) to pull available infantry?

Ships should have exclusive cargo slots for enemy infantry, so you can still load defending infantry if you've been fully boarded.

Unloading all infantry or resources should only unload a portion that will actually fit at the destination.

EDIT: And maybe infantry damaging subsystems should give points towards ship capture? Like 0.1 per subsystem?
[ This Message was edited by: Daisy on 2023-08-14 00:41 ]
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grossenschwanz
Grand Admiral

Joined: October 13, 2023
Posts: 3
Posted: 2023-10-13 19:55   
the soluton is simple and always has been: remove ai returning everything to status quo, have players work for it. ai engineers rebuilding what you bomb for instance, or the ai answering call for help cloud when capturing planets, thats no real help for the game.

edit: ok so i noticed after coming back this is mostly fixed. If you give ai orders they say no ships around.

So move on to next observation: the ai constantly spawns and then tries to jump gates into a new server, disappearing forever by doing so. Followed a few of them around. This mechanic especially triggers when there are no enemy ships/ai encountered at the moment. They immediatly flow to a gate to spawn into oblivion.

Now I dont know if this was ment to be, to make sure no ai are fighting, clogging the servers when there are no players, but in that case the code is not working in that way because it happens while im fighting another player for control. They spawn dreads and such from their shipyard mostly that stick around while my ai flies to gate to unsummon. This is mostly annoying if I try to turn the enemy AI spam into my advantage by capping them all, just to have them unsummon...

so in short: make the ai unsummon timer a bit longer then 30 seconds. Maybe 2 minutes is ok. thats sometimes how long it takes for next wave of enemy ai to apear.

Oh edit 2: k'luth ai dreads tend to not fire their guns at the enemy but instead just hover around cloaked>not cloaked.. Ive started noticing vs enemy ai but aso yesterday vs 2 enemy players. I rather have 2 destroyers then 1 dread because of that, so thats why I make all shipyards 70 tech. Might be an issue where they check their signal before attacking.
[ This Message was edited by: grossenschwanz on 2023-10-16 19:20 ]
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