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Messages - Michael Sandy

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Bureau of Ship Design / Re: My first original warship please review
« on: November 11, 2017, 09:29:07 PM »
Spinal weapons give you bigger and slower weapons.  You don't have enough firecontrol range to fully exploit it.  The main advantage of a really big weapon is actually the shock damage it does, because the DPS is typically lower.

For the highest dps, you should go for the caliber that can hit out to the furthest extent of your fire control, with either a 5 second rate of fire or a 10 second rate of fire.

Spinals might have a niche application for a ship that fights in a nebula, where the shock damage would be a bigger factor because no need to batter through shields.  Or possibly as a jump point assault/defense ship, where the combat may start at close range, and the initial shot is more important than sustained damage.

For boarding ships, you want them to be a minimum of 10x as fast as the target ship (or was it 6?) to have most of your troops survive boarding.  Also, it would be nice if the boarding ship could survive 5 seconds of point blank fire, so if the target had any active weapons left, it could drop off the boarders and then run away.

You also want ships that can rapidly retrieve your boarding marines.  You can have commercial designs for them.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: My first original warship please review
« on: November 10, 2017, 05:14:27 PM »
Much improved... except for the engineering spaces.  As a rule of thumb, you want at least twice as much maintenance life as you have deployment time, because it takes twice as long to rewind maintenance time as deployment time.

You still have a small mismatch in the speed of your ship and the tracking on your fire control.

The rule of thumb I go with for magazine to launcher ratio is roughly equal HS for magazine and launcher, the faster the launcher, the more you should emphasize the magazine.  And that is regardless of whether you go with regular launchers, x.5, x.33 or x.25 launchers.  That goes for carrier ammo capacities as well, so plan for about 3 reloads for your fighter's box launchers.

For AMM capacity, my theory is that if I outnumber the enemy 2-1, I should be able to destroy them without taking casualties, at least not more than armor damage.  Therefore, the defensive fire of two of my ships should be able to neutralize the offensive power of one, or two of my squadrons should be able to handle the fire of one.

And while this isn't a problem with your ship, there is something you want to keep in mind with fuel tanks.  You never want a fuel tank hit to mission kill a capital warship.  While commercial ships will want the largest and cheapest fuel tanks possible, a military ship that expects to see combat can't afford to watch a million liters of fuel disappear with a single meson hit.  For military, front line ships, I recommend either standard 50,000 liter tanks or 250,000 liter tanks, rather than the very large 1,000,000 liter tanks.  The cost savings that comes with reduce HtK is not really worth it.

Because space on a military ship is at a premium, if you can have commercial tankers keep up or preposition fuel supplies when you have to move the fleet in a hurry, you will have a somewhat leaner and more efficient war fleet.

But that is something to do if you like micromanaging, if you want fleets that are much simpler to manage, or if you have a particular horror of your warfleet getting stranded without fuel, internal fuel supply is fine.

The Academy / Re: Dumb newbie mistakes to avoid
« on: November 10, 2017, 04:47:47 PM »
I probe ALL jump points with scout pinnaces.  Either 250 ton ones that are really cheap, and use the minimum ship sensors to check out planets, or 500 ton ones with 3 HS sensors.

Scout pinnaces have 30-60 billion km range, a .5 hs engineering system.

Fleet scouts are much shorter endurance, with boosted engines and no jump drive or engineering system, and are used for tactical scouting, not strategic.

Once I get x.33 reduced sized launchers, I build a pinnace with a launcher, minimum fire control, and a magazine full of sensor missiles of various types.

A lot of AIs don't shoot at buoys or sensor missiles, so you can occasionally get a fix on them, and then get an idea of their passive sensor range when they start moving on detection of your battle fleet.  I like the game of trying to figure out the enemy's capacities before actually fighting them.

The Academy / Re: Dumb newbie mistakes to avoid
« on: November 10, 2017, 04:07:13 PM »
One of my high priorities early on is half sized engineering systems.  I put them on my scouting pinnaces, and the PD escort fighters.

Part of it is RP.  I simply would not want to be on a solo ship exploring another system with no means of repairing crucial systems and no way to get help, simply because of budget matters.  I would take the somewhat lower speed and range, their job is dangerous enough.

Aurora Chat / Re: Shared ships classes per SY
« on: November 10, 2017, 03:53:19 AM »
All things being equal, you want the shipyard tooled to the more expensive components.  The more expensive the ship, the bigger a difference 20% of that cost is going to be.  On the other hand, making the tooling an excessively expensive version may make it more expensive and time consuming to retool.

Aurora Chat / Re: Shared ships classes per SY
« on: November 10, 2017, 03:50:38 AM »
Other than going to the DAC page and checking the refit cost from the old class to the new, not really.

One of the reasons I put a hangar on every capital ship is so that I can 'refit' a lot of things by simply switching out some fighter pods.

Spoilers / Re: Star swarm questions
« on: November 09, 2017, 05:21:46 PM »
Mommy's have mesons, but since they have massive shields, they can also safely ram without taking permanent damage.

If you can, scout carefully with some sacrificial fast ship to gauge their exact range.  That will help you a lot on the ship design and tactics.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: My first original warship please review
« on: November 09, 2017, 05:19:40 PM »
Pretty sure you would be able to beat Swarm with that ship, it just wouldn't be pretty or efficient.

You could sandpaper the LACs with your AMMs, and if you close to point blank ( <5 second flight time with the missiles), the Swarm Mommy wouldn't be able to use its Mesons to kill your big missiles.  And size 42 warheads will be able to knock the shields down.

I generally prefer x.33 or x.25 size launchers, sacrificing rate of fire for volley size.  Get enough so that even after point defense, they can blow the shields down in one hit.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: My first original warship please review
« on: November 09, 2017, 05:02:15 PM »
Even if you have maintenance failures switched off, I wouldn't want to have a battleship with no self-repair ability.  If you have maintenance on, that ship would blow up in six months.

More importantly, you have a wonderfully long ranged beam and beam FC, but you aren't actually fast enough to kite the swarm ships.  Not sure if you have the sustained firepower to knock down a Swarm Mommy's shields.

The Swarm are ridiculously easy to take out with MagnetoPlasma level tech, let alone antimatter.

The 8k level Meson techs and fire controls get you a meson weapon of 200km range, and you can build a speedster of 12-15k with decent enough range.  Have some missile fighters prompt the Mommy ship to launch, kite the swarm LACs, and politely Meson the mommy to death from out of its range.

Keep in mind that shields and armor are pretty much irrelevant fighting Mesons, so having them just means your ships are useful against other foes.

ECCM is good to have in a kiting ship, where range is so damned important.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: Soviet Socialist States Navy Designs
« on: November 08, 2017, 09:01:42 PM »
There are some interesting strategic consequences to building a fleet with the slow beam fleet philosophy I mentioned above.

You can't really skirmish with it.  You either need to have enough of a fleet present to swamp the missiles, or you will get defeated by anyone with enough missiles to kill your ships.  On the other hand, if you move to a disputed colony world, the rival can shoot all they want, but they basically have to concede the world.  But all the rival loses is their ammo, not their fleet.  Which means not necessarily any huge hard feelings as there would be if they had to blow away a rival fleet to demonstrate their seriousness about their claim.

There is a huge issue of not being able to be in two places at once, of course, or of being able to really finish somebody off.  But if they also don't want to weaken a rival so much that some other rival gobbles them up, it could work.  Or at least make for interesting write ups.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: Soviet Socialist States Navy Designs
« on: November 08, 2017, 08:54:00 PM »
Actually, a disparity between maintenance life, deployment time and fuel makes a lot of sense.  A lot of time, you will deploy to a jump point and wait for a long time.  Or if you are attacking a planet, you will move to the planet and stay over it for a long time.  A lot of time a ship will be deployed, but not moving.

As far as maintenance time, maintenance rolls back slower than deployment time, and it is a lot easier to roll back deployment time.  Just park over any 10k pop undeveloped rock and it rolls back.

My theory on maintenance life is to have it long enough that I will be bringing the ships back for refit either the first or second time that it starts pushing into the maintenance limits.  The fuel endurance has to be enough to get from any jump point to the objective and back and enough for maneuvering, and I can extend that with tankers.  Prepositioned tankers, perhaps.  But the deployment time has to be longer enough to get to the frontiers and back without stopping, as well as allowing time on station, and you can't bring extra deployment time in a commercial ship like you can bring fuel.

I think having twice the deployment time in maintenance life is a good rule of thumb to shoot for.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: Soviet Socialist States Navy Designs
« on: November 08, 2017, 04:23:59 PM »
Fighter beam fire control get a free x4 speed.  So if you have a base 4000 km/s fire control speed, your normal maximum fire control speed is 16,000 km/s with a x4 fire control.  But you can get up to 64,000 km/s with the same tech in a fighter.

Now, you would be unlikely to get a laser turret that fast in a fighter that can actually move, but you could get miniaturized gauss turrets into a fighter easily.  I generally start making PD fighters once I get gauss rate of fire 2 and some turret techs.  They aren't great, but they can at least engage higher engine tech missiles.

Between the fire control and commanders with fighter combat bonus, you get pretty decent anti-missile escorts.  But the reason that I personally went that route was because I went conventional start, and I wanted to build up my fighter factories early and have something to do with them, not suddenly start building them only after I got hangar and box launcher tech.  In a transnewtonian start, you can have all your ships built instantly to the same tech standard.  Tech transitions very differently in transnewtonian.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: Soviet Socialist States Navy Designs
« on: November 08, 2017, 02:09:37 AM »
While I like early fighters, until you get Box launchers they are not really effective as strike fighters.  If you really want to not rely on missiles, you should have a fleet that is very strong at point defense.  Fighter fire control can hit missiles that have significantly higher engine tech.

The theory is then if you can shoot down all the missiles, which you might be able to before box launcher or x.33 or x.25 launcher size tech, and your beam weapons outrange the enemy, it doesn't matter so much if the enemy is faster, because you just head to the objective and force them into combat to defend it.

It works better on defense than offense, as it is easier to exhaust the missiles of a mobile force.  And you would need to be able to track and pursue the empty missile boats of the enemy to do more than fend off the enemy.  But if your naval builders had a very defensive mindset, and didn't wish to build an efficient offensive force for fear of seeming threatening and aggressive, it could work, RP wise.

Bureau of Ship Design / Re: Soviet Socialist States Navy Designs
« on: November 07, 2017, 05:18:44 PM »
I am curious about the starting conditions.  Because in a conventional start, even if I set the shipyard growing after it is done making survey ships, it isn't likely to get to 18,000 ton capacity before Ion tech.

Advanced Tactical Command Academy / Re: Submarines in space?
« on: November 04, 2017, 03:45:00 PM »
Except as soon as the missile leaves the tube, it's sensors turn on. Against a target with a very strong passive sensor, it paints a trail right towards you.

Just like you can see the torpedo track, even if you can not see the submarine.  I am not seeing the problem from a game perspective.  You can't TARGET the sub just by backtracking the missiles/torpedos.

Can't missiles home in on passive sensors?  That way the missiles themselves aren't going to be emitting anything.

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