Author Topic: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...  (Read 2075 times)

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Offline BasileusMaximos (OP)

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Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« on: December 15, 2019, 11:19:35 AM »
...Or can missile defenses eventually negate them?

I'm a bit discouraged to hear that spamming enough missiles get anything done and the only real limitation is that you need to build and stow them. However, with sufficiently advanced tech can you counter most missile barrages?

And going off that, how effective are super-fast, deadly and short ranged missiles launched from carrier-based stealth bombers from up close? Is that a good strategy?

 

Offline JustAnotherDude

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2019, 12:24:08 PM »
Massed small missiles are essentially unblockable at equivalent tonnages and tech levels but will be shorter ranged and deal less damage then larger, more effecornt but easier to stop missiles. There is counterplay, that being armor/shields or just having longer ranged missiles. Missiles are absolutely the best option for mainline weapons, but that's because a beam ship both slower then and longer ranged then it's opponent is essentially incapable of winning a battle. It makes them very, very risky to bet on. They're still useful in specialist roles, but missiles are definitely the better option.
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2019, 02:39:03 PM »
Missiles are suppose to be the primary weapon in the game with beam weapons as an important secondary weapon. Beam weapons is still important, just not for general space superiority.

There are a few Achilles heels with missiles which are logistics and the cost being transferred to one very important resource "Tritanium". You can certainly offer an effective defence against missiles if you soo choose to, especially if you have a good balance of beam and missile weapons and defences such as ECM, armour and shields.

Shields are really good against box launched attacks and beam weapons extremely effective against full size launched missiles as one example.

In C# missile ranges will become shorter, small missiles will become less potent both in therms of range and the fact they can't fit all the necessary electronics that C# will offer that will make bigger missiles more lethal and versatile.

In C# beam weapons will become way more important as you will really need them for defence and offence in planetary combat.

If you have a fleet that can neutralise the enemy missile strength they will have to retreat or face you in beam combat. Missiles are basically like bombardment in that you can be lucky and destroy the enemy, but if you don't you have to withdraw (if the enemy is stronger in beam combat than you are).

So, the game is not just about missile combat... it is a bit more complicated than that. If you play with a multi-faction human controlled campaign you will notice that it is way more complicated than just missiles are better.
 

Offline Steve Walmsley

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2019, 03:13:15 PM »
...Or can missile defenses eventually negate them?

I'm a bit discouraged to hear that spamming enough missiles get anything done and the only real limitation is that you need to build and stow them. However, with sufficiently advanced tech can you counter most missile barrages?

And going off that, how effective are super-fast, deadly and short ranged missiles launched from carrier-based stealth bombers from up close? Is that a good strategy?

Missiles are great in any given tactical situation. They have huge logistical problems if you become involved in any sort of sustained conflict. I always end up needing energy-armed ships in any campaign. In fact, if I had to choose between missiles-only or energy-only for a campaign, I would choose energy-only without hesitation.
 

Offline BasileusMaximos (OP)

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2019, 03:13:42 PM »
So is there a place for small but potent missile launched from small bomber vessels from a carrier WWII style?
 

Offline Steve Walmsley

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2019, 03:18:29 PM »
So is there a place for small but potent missile launched from small bomber vessels from a carrier WWII style?

Yes, absolutely. Read my current campaign :)
 

Offline Father Tim

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2019, 05:47:13 PM »
Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...

No.  They are the Dark Side of the the Force.  Easier, faster, more seductive, but not stronger.

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...Or can missile defenses eventually negate them?

Yes.  Anything your opponent can do can be negated in Aurora.  This is the essence of why the AI is doomed -- you can tailor your sensors, speed, weapons, sizes, ship types, doctrine, fleet composition, and locations to exploit your enemies' weaknesses.  In VB 6 Aurora the AI will not do the same against you.  The proposed AI for C# Aurora will address a few of these issues, but not many.

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I'm a bit discouraged to hear that spamming enough missiles get anything done and the only real limitation is that you need to build and stow them. However, with sufficiently advanced tech can you counter most missile barrages?

Missiles are tactically very strong, but strategically a huge weakness.  I have defeated countless enemies by running them out of missiles (whether locally or empire-wide) and then destroying their useless hulks.  It is not particularly difficult to make a ship that is less expensive than the missiles needed* to destroy it.  Indeed, the fiction sections on this sitea are full of examples of Empires shooting absurd quantities of AMMs that cost half as much as the missiles they are meant to destroy at 5v1 rates.

And again, at virtually any tech level, you can build 'missile-proof' defenses if you know the details of the missiles you are trying to counter and design things specifically against them.

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And going off that, how effective are super-fast, deadly and short ranged missiles launched from carrier-based stealth bombers from up close?

That depends strongly on how fast and how stealthy the bombers are, and how "up close" they get.

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Is that a good strategy?

Is it fun for you?  That is LITERALLY the only difference between a good strategy and a bad one.

If you don't know, try it and find out.  If it's mostly fun -- but annoying in ways A, B, and C -- then don't be afraid to use SpaceMaster mode to alter A, B and/or C.
 

Offline Father Tim

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2019, 06:16:44 PM »
Missiles are suppose to be the primary weapon in the game with beam weapons as an important secondary weapon. Beam weapons is still important, just not for general space superiority.

They absolutely are not, and I will fight to the last electron on this topic.  I abhor and oppose any suggestion that 'modern wet-navy combat works like X, therefore Aurora must work like X'.  Aurora has to have room for Star Wars and Firefly/Serenity and WH40K and the Lost Fleet and BattleTech and Age-of-Sail-in-space, and any other style of space fantasy / science fiction a player wants to play.

NO weapon in Aurora should be "the primary weapon"  -- it is detrimental to the game (and fun) for there to be one right answer, and all the rest wrong answers.  Missiles need to not be mandatory; parasite craft need to not be mandatory; civilan wealth generation keeping the empire alive needs to not be mandatory.

Every time one dictates that Aurora has to follow this or that assumption, one is cutting off some player's fun.
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2019, 07:22:05 PM »
Missiles are suppose to be the primary weapon in the game with beam weapons as an important secondary weapon. Beam weapons is still important, just not for general space superiority.

They absolutely are not, and I will fight to the last electron on this topic.  I abhor and oppose any suggestion that 'modern wet-navy combat works like X, therefore Aurora must work like X'.  Aurora has to have room for Star Wars and Firefly/Serenity and WH40K and the Lost Fleet and BattleTech and Age-of-Sail-in-space, and any other style of space fantasy / science fiction a player wants to play.

NO weapon in Aurora should be "the primary weapon"  -- it is detrimental to the game (and fun) for there to be one right answer, and all the rest wrong answers.  Missiles need to not be mandatory; parasite craft need to not be mandatory; civilan wealth generation keeping the empire alive needs to not be mandatory.

Every time one dictates that Aurora has to follow this or that assumption, one is cutting off some player's fun.

I think you misjudged that comment...

When you are playing with say a multi-faction campaign the most successful faction will almost always use a healthy mix of missiles and beam weapons. No matter how you view it missiles are king when it comes to deliver a long range lethal powerful strike. That is the benefit of using missiles tactically. The problem is over reliance on any one weapon system as neither is very effective unless you are allot stronger to start with.

As all fleets evolve in the same environment in such campaigns and all sides change their designs and try to adapt and gain the upper hand all the time.

Missiles simply us the tip of the spear while beam weapons is the sword, they are both important and fill a purpose.

That is my experience from playing several rather complex campaigns.
 

Offline BasileusMaximos (OP)

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2019, 09:47:52 PM »
Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...



If you don't know, try it and find out.  If it's mostly fun -- but annoying in ways A, B, and C -- then don't be afraid to use SpaceMaster mode to alter A, B and/or C.

When you say you can use SpaceMaster to alter that game to your liking, does that mean you can give beam weapons unlimited range like they would have in real life in space?
 
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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2019, 03:44:04 AM »
IMO the problem is the initial assumption: You can counter missiles just fine with sufficiently LOW tech.
A very low power multiplier engine can cost 5BP, at 25HTK. A base-tech railgun is 1BP, at 3HTK. The railguns will deal with large missiles, and the unstoppable barrage of small missiles that gets the job done will cost much more than the target even before taking the cost of the firing platforms into account.

Standard point defence has no chance of countering missiles ton for ton. In box launchers, you can field more than 6 missiles per HS. You'd need a perfect hit rate with maximum-RoF llowest-size Gauss weapons, impossible. That's good, because missiles have a much higher logistics burden, especially small missiles that won't benefit from shock damage and armour penetration mechanics.

Slow missiles can e kited, interceptors faster than them can shoot down a near-unlimited amount.
Even without that, Gauss or railgun fighters in numbers can be difficult to fight with missiles. Relevant point defence, possibly quite speedy, and even with on-board sensors to avoid overkill there's a second PD opportunity.

I don't think missiles are dominant now. I've tried many different doctrines with different roleplay emphasis and almost anything can work, but if efficiency is a concern I'd go relatively light on missiles, mostly for bombardment and to plug holes in my capability against technologically superior foes. Missiles may have an advantage in an all-out decisive first strike with no concern but immediate victory... but no real-life military fields ICBMs and nothing else.

I'm more concerned about balance in C# going against missiles. Fire controls no longer being a bottleneck for PD, point-blank fire no longer evading most PD is a big change.
But mostly, things will be weird. C# rules seem less robust in many ways, and will require a lot more holding back if one doesn't want to break things.
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #11 on: December 16, 2019, 04:23:58 AM »
I agree that C# will lessen the gap between beams and missiles. Low tech rail-guns are quite cost effective, especially since they can use the same fire-controls as anti ship beams.

My problem with Gauss is that you need pretty advanced versions to beat basic tech rail-guns.

At least build cost is not going to be the only concern in C# as you still need maintenance facilities, so quality will be a bit more important.

I'm pretty sure C# can be broken and will need personal control and limitations just like VB6.
 

Offline xenoscepter

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2019, 05:58:58 AM »
I'd also add that missiles cost fuel. Not much fuel in many cases, but when you're throwing 80-120 missiles into a magazine per ship it starts to add up. Preventing overkill also requires you to field Active Sensors on your missiles, thus costing Uridium, a valuable resource in and of itself.
 

Offline Gyrfalcon

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2019, 08:05:05 AM »
I think that Gauss Cannons need to be looked at and need some love and attention. As they are, they're really, really bad until mid-late game. Given they look to be meant to fill the role of the railgun at the fighter level and for point defense purposes, they suffer from being both way too large and way too slow for those roles.

The stock gauss cannon with 100% chance to hit railgun is 6 HS, compared to 3.x for the railgun. (The x being the size needed for the reactor to power the railgun. If you make the railgun the same size, it now has a base 50% chance to miss on every shot.

Speaking of shots, it starts at 1/5sec, which is terrible given the stock railgun is 4/5s. On a pure research point basis, you're somewhere into the early mid-game before the gauss cannon can fire as many times as the railgun you can build in the early nuclear era. After that, it slowly starts to outstrip the railgun, but continues to fall prey to the problem that it's simply a lot larger then the railgun for the same role. You can (almost) fit two railguns into the space of one gauss cannon, meaning that with a 100% hit chance gauss cannon, it needs to fire 9/5s before its better then having two railguns in the same location.

Now on a ship, the gauss cannons have an advantage in that they can be turret mounted, but that's about their only advantage. Fighters are more then fast enough to aim a beam weapon at the maximum tracking speed, so the balance stays pegged towards the railgun.
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Are Missiles the Ultimate Meta...
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2019, 08:17:35 AM »
I think that Gauss Cannons need to be looked at and need some love and attention. As they are, they're really, really bad until mid-late game. Given they look to be meant to fill the role of the railgun at the fighter level and for point defense purposes, they suffer from being both way too large and way too slow for those roles.

The stock gauss cannon with 100% chance to hit railgun is 6 HS, compared to 3.x for the railgun. (The x being the size needed for the reactor to power the railgun. If you make the railgun the same size, it now has a base 50% chance to miss on every shot.

Speaking of shots, it starts at 1/5sec, which is terrible given the stock railgun is 4/5s. On a pure research point basis, you're somewhere into the early mid-game before the gauss cannon can fire as many times as the railgun you can build in the early nuclear era. After that, it slowly starts to outstrip the railgun, but continues to fall prey to the problem that it's simply a lot larger then the railgun for the same role. You can (almost) fit two railguns into the space of one gauss cannon, meaning that with a 100% hit chance gauss cannon, it needs to fire 9/5s before its better then having two railguns in the same location.

Now on a ship, the gauss cannons have an advantage in that they can be turret mounted, but that's about their only advantage. Fighters are more then fast enough to aim a beam weapon at the maximum tracking speed, so the balance stays pegged towards the railgun.

Yes... both rail-gun and Gauss should be looked at. I think they both should share technologies such as launch velocity for example, Gauss and rail-gun are essentially the same thing more or less. Then the Gauss cannon need to actually be useful before you spend tens of thousands of research on it.
 

 

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