Author Topic: How fast is NPR developing?  (Read 730 times)

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Offline Entaro (OP)

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How fast is NPR developing?
« on: November 20, 2021, 11:03:18 AM »
1.  If I started out as a "traditional empire", does that mean that, other things being equal, NPR will be much more developed than me?
When I investigated their system, early in their development, they already had many ships near their mother planet.
2.  How aggressive is NPR, should I be afraid that while I create my first colonies and outposts, NPR is going to attack and destroy me?
3.  Should I quickly research the diplomatic module and try to build relationships with them before it's too late?
They were already a scout in my home system, and I was in theirs.
4.  Is there something really powerful and effective for protecting jump points based on rockets?
The mines, as I understand it, do not work.

What can be done? Surround the crossing point with combat stations that are as armored as possible and capable of firing a bunch of fast and powerful missiles? (due to the lack of engines, such stations can accommodate more weapons).  But, as I understand it, such stations will be defenseless against the attack of many ships with beam weapons . . .
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2021, 11:34:48 PM »
  • Yes.
  • It varies. Some NPRs are very friendly, others will attack you if they feel provoked, still others will attack you because it is Tuesday. This cannot really be predicted except from observing the NPR actions and behaviors.
  • The diplomatic modules requires no research, it is a readily available component. If you have a spare shipyard it is a good idea to build a few diplomatic ships with a commercial engine (thus requiring no maintenance) and park them at a suitable location.
  • Missiles are fine for jump point defense. JP defense is a situation where beam weapons are highly effective, since you don't really have to close the range on enemy ships and due to jump shock you will get 1-2 free volleys of fire before the enemy can reply. However, missiles can also take advantage of jump shock reasonably well if you have enough to overcome any point defense.

If you are committed to using only missiles, a well-armed fleet is a perfectly good JP defense, but dedicated missile launcher bases at the jump point can also work if you are able to deploy the necessary maintenance facilities to keep them serviced, or use a tug to swap them in and out for overhauls periodically. I would probably just use a battle fleet, NPR jump point assaults are not that dangerous as they are vulnerable due to jump shock at the start of the battle and otherwise it is just like any other battle. You can also just keep a sensor picket at the jump point and send your fleet out to engage the enemy if/when they attack, which is exactly the same as any other battle, if you are worried about enemy beam weapons.
 
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Offline Migi

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2021, 06:29:27 AM »
If you use the no armour option, you don't even need a shipyard for the diplomatic station.
Just make sure it has some basic (50 ton) passive sensors on it and tug it into position.
 
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Offline Entaro (OP)

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2021, 08:12:18 AM »
Quote from: nuclearslurpee link=topic=12830. msg156889#msg156889 date=1637472888
  • Yes.
  • It varies.  Some NPRs are very friendly, others will attack you if they feel provoked, still others will attack you because it is Tuesday.  This cannot really be predicted except from observing the NPR actions and behaviors.
  • The diplomatic modules requires no research, it is a readily available component.  If you have a spare shipyard it is a good idea to build a few diplomatic ships with a commercial engine (thus requiring no maintenance) and park them at a suitable location.
  • Missiles are fine for jump point defense.  JP defense is a situation where beam weapons are highly effective, since you don't really have to close the range on enemy ships and due to jump shock you will get 1-2 free volleys of fire before the enemy can reply.  However, missiles can also take advantage of jump shock reasonably well if you have enough to overcome any point defense.

If you are committed to using only missiles, a well-armed fleet is a perfectly good JP defense, but dedicated missile launcher bases at the jump point can also work if you are able to deploy the necessary maintenance facilities to keep them serviced, or use a tug to swap them in and out for overhauls periodically.  I would probably just use a battle fleet, NPR jump point assaults are not that dangerous as they are vulnerable due to jump shock at the start of the battle and otherwise it is just like any other battle.  You can also just keep a sensor picket at the jump point and send your fleet out to engage the enemy if/when they attack, which is exactly the same as any other battle, if you are worried about enemy beam weapons.


1.  Got it . .  it's sad.  How, in principle (without engaging in combat), can I assess the power of NPR? Place an inconspicuous sensor station near their planet?
What sensors should it have in order for NPR to notice them with the minimum probability?

2.  Hmm . . .  what could provoke them other than finding my warships in their system?
4.  I do not quite understand exactly how to effectively use missiles to protect the jump point.
How much time bonus will I have? Does NPR use a construction that can reduce the shock time to 11-30s, or a standard jump? These are two huge differences . . .

I only see two potentially effective options:

1) Create missiles, with a range of 2 million km, but very fast, invest in missile reload speed technology, and eventually meet the enemy, firing every 10-15 seconds with many fast and powerful missiles.
On the other hand . . .  I can do almost the same thing with two-stage rockets . . .  Can't you?
The question here is how many shots I have.  If 1-2, then there is no special sense, probably, but if 10-15 after a normal jump, then it is very powerful . . .

Hmm . . .  You can also create fast enough ships that can overtake the enemy, being constantly at a distance of 2 million km, out of the reach of enemy beam weapons, while I can shoot these fast and powerful missiles for a long time!
Or, conversely, build stations, saving on engines.

2) Create fighters with rocket launchers, and place an aircraft carrier, or a station with hangars at the jump point.
But here the question arises . . .
How long does it take for fighters to leave an aircraft carrier and how long does it take for them to reload?
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2021, 12:40:09 PM »
1.  Got it . .  it's sad.  How, in principle (without engaging in combat), can I assess the power of NPR? Place an inconspicuous sensor station near their planet?
What sensors should it have in order for NPR to notice them with the minimum probability?

You say sad, I say fun...challenging NPRs are good for a fun game and sadly the AI is not up to snuff so a tech lead is about the best we can expect from an NPR. To gather information about a NPR's capabilities, you can assess the number and kinds of ships that you detect, the speed at which they are moving (implies engine tech, which in turn suggests what general tech level they are at), and the sensor information you gather which can be analyzed to yield useful tech information as well.

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2.  Hmm . . .  what could provoke them other than finding my warships in their system?

Generally if they feel that you are maintaining a presence in a system that belongs to them they will get annoyed. Usually you will get many messages indicating this, if you do not get such messages and they attack you then they were planning to do so anyways.

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4.  I do not quite understand exactly how to effectively use missiles to protect the jump point.

Point missile at enemy. Press big red button. Blow up enemy. It's not really very different from any other fight, just at closer range and the enemy has jump shock. If you are not comfortable at close range remember that you can always detect them and then fight them normally, which is perfectly viable if your fleet is any good at fighting.

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How much time bonus will I have? Does NPR use a construction that can reduce the shock time to 11-30s, or a standard jump? These are two huge differences . . .

The time will vary, but for squadron jumps you typically expect to see 10-30 seconds delay per ship, and it can vary per ship. If the NPR does a standard jump you get more like a minute or two, but often they will just jump back out in 5 sec because NPRs don't have to re-spin up their jump drives for balance reasons. It is annoying but it is what it is.

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I only see two potentially effective options:

1) Create missiles, with a range of 2 million km, but very fast, invest in missile reload speed technology, and eventually meet the enemy, firing every 10-15 seconds with many fast and powerful missiles.
On the other hand . . .  I can do almost the same thing with two-stage rockets . . .  Can't you?
The question here is how many shots I have.  If 1-2, then there is no special sense, probably, but if 10-15 after a normal jump, then it is very powerful . . .

Hmm . . .  You can also create fast enough ships that can overtake the enemy, being constantly at a distance of 2 million km, out of the reach of enemy beam weapons, while I can shoot these fast and powerful missiles for a long time!
Or, conversely, build stations, saving on engines.

2) Create fighters with rocket launchers, and place an aircraft carrier, or a station with hangars at the jump point.
But here the question arises . . .
How long does it take for fighters to leave an aircraft carrier and how long does it take for them to reload?

Both of these are valid approaches. However, I would suggest that maybe you are overthinking it a little bit, any well-built fleet can handle a NPR just fine if you are not too badly out-teched (and if you are out-teched, fighting is rarely in your best interest regardless of your strategy), so I would focus on doing simpler designs until you are used to the game and have more confidence about what can work and what might not. A basic fleet with fairly standard missile designs and a few different ship classes to use them is good enough to learn the game with. As long as you focus on defense at first you will probably be okay, and if you feel like the NPR outmatches you technologically you can buy time by agreeing to their demands to leave a system they claim and using diplomatic ships/stations to build trust and good relations.
 
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Offline Entaro (OP)

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2021, 03:03:49 PM »
Quote from: nuclearslurpee link=topic=12830. msg156906#msg156906 date=1637520009
You say sad, I say fun. . . challenging NPRs are good for a fun game and sadly the AI is not up to snuff so a tech lead is about the best we can expect from an NPR.  To gather information about a NPR's capabilities, you can assess the number and kinds of ships that you detect, the speed at which they are moving (implies engine tech, which in turn suggests what general tech level they are at), and the sensor information you gather which can be analyzed to yield useful tech information as well.
It's just that this is my first game, and I wouldn't really want to lose 30+ hours because the enemy will fly to my home planet and destroy everything there :)
Hmm . . .  How can I rate the types of ships? Let's say I install small stations with passive sensors in their system.  But how can I distinguish between cargo ships and military ships?

And by the way, the use of stations with active sensors in their system will not provoke them to attack?

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Generally if they feel that you are maintaining a presence in a system that belongs to them they will get annoyed.  Usually you will get many messages indicating this, if you do not get such messages and they attack you then they were planning to do so anyways.
Does this apply to diplomatic ships? Or do they not annoy them?
But what if powerful sensors were placed in a diplomatic ship? :)

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The time will vary, but for squadron jumps you typically expect to see 10-30 seconds delay per ship, and it can vary per ship.  If the NPR does a standard jump you get more like a minute or two, but often they will just jump back out in 5 sec because NPRs don't have to re-spin up their jump drives for balance reasons.  It is annoying but it is what it is.
Those.  Can NPR jump back in 5 seconds after jumping?
And he will do it if he decides that my fleet is stronger.
In this case, an attempt to create a fleet that would destroy the enemy at the jump point does not make sense.

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Both of these are valid approaches.  However, I would suggest that maybe you are overthinking it a little bit, any well-built fleet can handle a NPR just fine if you are not too badly out-teched (and if you are out-teched, fighting is rarely in your best interest regardless of your strategy), so I would focus on doing simpler designs until you are used to the game and have more confidence about what can work and what might not.  A basic fleet with fairly standard missile designs and a few different ship classes to use them is good enough to learn the game with.  As long as you focus on defense at first you will probably be okay, and if you feel like the NPR outmatches you technologically you can buy time by agreeing to their demands to leave a system they claim and using diplomatic ships/stations to build trust and good relations.
The problem is, I'm too far behind.  I started as a traditional empire, and although I tried to develop as efficiently as possible, at the time when I had only my own planet with 700-800 million people, and 3 geo-prospectors, the NPR (who already knows where I live) had a fleet of more than 30 ships.  And I don't even know what kind of ships they are.
Now I still have neither a military fleet, nor normal military technologies, and I do not know what to do if the NDP decides to fight with me, so I am trying to find a way to create some kind of protection as cheaply as possible.
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #6 on: November 21, 2021, 03:10:34 PM »
Quote
Hmm . . .  How can I rate the types of ships? Let's say I install small stations with passive sensors in their system.  But how can I distinguish between cargo ships and military ships?

Use thermal sensors, because they can ell you if a ship has military or commercial engines. You can rate military ships based on their size, which you can get from active sensors or estimate from thermal sensors, since size (in HS) is (speed * 1000) / (thermal signature). Thermal sensors are very good for this kind of passive information gathering.

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Does this apply to diplomatic ships? Or do they not annoy them?

Diplomatic ships are usually fine as long as they are not too big and (I think) do not have military engines.

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Those.  Can NPR jump back in 5 seconds after jumping?

Yes, if they do a standard jump, in this case it's probably better to stand off and engage them in a battle at a distance from the jump point especially if you use missile fleets which can win without taking damage from long range.

If the NPR does a squadron jump, they will be offset from the jump point and you will get the opportunity to fire on them.

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The problem is, I'm too far behind.

The best solution is probably to pursue diplomacy. As a player race you can out-tech the NPR pretty easily given enough time and diplomacy can probably give you that time.
 
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Offline Entaro (OP)

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #7 on: November 21, 2021, 03:40:58 PM »
Use thermal sensors, because they can ell you if a ship has military or commercial engines. You can rate military ships based on their size, which you can get from active sensors or estimate from thermal sensors, since size (in HS) is (speed * 1000) / (thermal signature). Thermal sensors are very good for this kind of passive information gathering.
Hmm ... so the heat sensor will show the motor type? Or can I just calculate it?
In terms of sizing based on thermal signature, that's a really great idea!
There is only one question left with them ... how small a reconnaissance station equipped with a thermal sensor will not be noticed by NPR?) 100 tons, at a distance of 1 million km from their planet - will it be normal?

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Yes, if they do a standard jump, in this case it's probably better to stand off and engage them in a battle at a distance from the jump point especially if you use missile fleets which can win without taking damage from long range.
If the NPR does a squadron jump, they will be offset from the jump point and you will get the opportunity to fire on them.
Somehow it turns out that there are too many "Ifs". All the same, to create missiles that can hit the enemy at a distance of 100 million km, and shoot from afar seems to me a much more winning idea. But I am concerned about error messages with two-stage missiles, and I still do not understand how they should work (in the sense of whether sensors are needed only for the first-stage missiles so that they can detect the enemy after the destruction of the first targets, or if in combat missiles the second stage will not have sensors, will they self-destruct?)

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The best solution is probably to pursue diplomacy. As a player race you can out-tech the NPR pretty easily given enough time and diplomacy can probably give you that time.
I will try. Thank you very much!
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2021, 04:18:03 PM »
There is only one question left with them ... how small a reconnaissance station equipped with a thermal sensor will not be noticed by NPR?) 100 tons, at a distance of 1 million km from their planet - will it be normal?

My suggestion is to just fly a ship up, get your intel, and fly away before the NPR gets too annoyed about you being there. Trying to put any kind of station in orbit of their home planet will probably go poorly.

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Somehow it turns out that there are too many "Ifs". All the same, to create missiles that can hit the enemy at a distance of 100 million km, and shoot from afar seems to me a much more winning idea. But I am concerned about error messages with two-stage missiles, and I still do not understand how they should work (in the sense of whether sensors are needed only for the first-stage missiles so that they can detect the enemy after the destruction of the first targets, or if in combat missiles the second stage will not have sensors, will they self-destruct?)

This is why I recommend using simple, one-stage missiles - until you get the hang of the game, and also until the next version fixes how these work.
 
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Offline Entaro (OP)

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2021, 04:45:49 PM »
My suggestion is to just fly a ship up, get your intel, and fly away before the NPR gets too annoyed about you being there. Trying to put any kind of station in orbit of their home planet will probably go poorly.
You can do that ... then, you can use a huge station with huge sensors for this.

Although I'm interested in the idea of using really small ships or stations.

A very small tug could be designed that would move slowly to minimize the heat signature and deliver the small temperature-sensing station to a point 1 million km from their planet's orbit. However, it is necessary to calculate the size of this station and the distance to the planet, so that, on the one hand, it can collect data that is important to me, and on the other, remain invisible.
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2021, 04:51:26 PM »
The thing is, you don't gain additional information from continuing to sense the enemy ships for a long time. If you see an enemy ship flying at 4,000 km/s with a thermal signature of 800, you gain all of this information in a single increment. Continuing to sense the same ship is not going to give you additional data, unless the ship's behavior changes in a way that gives you more information.

If you are playing with multiple player races then this kind of continuous intelligence gathering is more useful, but the NPRs are not really programmed to keep anything secret so once you have gathered the initial intelligence you usually will know most of what you could want to know. At the same time, even a small passive sensor station is actually pretty easy to detect at a good distance, so you are not going to succeed in being stealthy in most cases - especially if you are near a NPR home planet with a huge fleet in orbit and powerful DSTSs on the ground. My recommendation is to start simple - just have your scout ship do a flyby and jump back out of the system - and then if you feel like you need more information you can start to play around with stealthy ways to get it.
 
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Offline Migi

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2021, 06:45:32 PM »
It's just that this is my first game, and I wouldn't really want to lose 30+ hours because the enemy will fly to my home planet and destroy everything there :)
You can admit that the game is a learning process and you'll do better next time.
Or you can go to the aurora folder, find the file called "AuroraDB.db" and copy it. Call the copy something descriptive, maybe put it in a separate folder.
Later, if/when things go pear shaped and you want to try again from that point, close Aurora, remove "AuroraDB.db", move the copy back into the original folder and rename it "AuroraDB.db". Start Aurora again and you will be back at this point.


Hmm ... so the heat sensor will show the motor type? Or can I just calculate it?
In terms of sizing based on thermal signature, that's a really great idea!
There is only one question left with them ... how small a reconnaissance station equipped with a thermal sensor will not be noticed by NPR?) 100 tons, at a distance of 1 million km from their planet - will it be normal?

Thermal sensors will give you a C or M with the sensor reading to show if the engine type is military or commercial.
1 Deep Space Tracking Centre with no tech upgrades can detect a strength 10 signal at about 13.6 million kilometres, so trying to get close to a homeworld without being detected is very difficult.


just have your scout ship do a flyby and jump back out of the system
If you do the flyby in a single construction period (~4.5 days unless you changed the settings) then you only get the diplomatic penalty once. Of course being detected in their home system will give the strongest relations penalty.


If you are worried about building a defensive fleet with fairly low tech requirements and no worries about missile issues, take a look at this thread for some inspiration.
http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=12818.0
 
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Offline Entaro (OP)

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #12 on: November 21, 2021, 07:00:07 PM »
The thing is, you don't gain additional information from continuing to sense the enemy ships for a long time. If you see an enemy ship flying at 4,000 km/s with a thermal signature of 800, you gain all of this information in a single increment. Continuing to sense the same ship is not going to give you additional data, unless the ship's behavior changes in a way that gives you more information.
I'm understood, thank you!

Thermal sensors will give you a C or M with the sensor reading to show if the engine type is military or commercial.
Got it, in that case, everything becomes much easier! :)

If you are worried about building a defensive fleet with fairly low tech requirements and no worries about missile issues, take a look at this thread for some inspiration.
http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=12818.0
Thanks, I'll take a look, but I would still like to play through the rockets. Moreover, I have already researched the engines.
 

Offline Entaro (OP)

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2021, 04:09:38 PM »
I don't really understand the mechanics of diplomacy.
Long ago founded a colony with 250 automated mines. She extracted resources for herself, there was nothing bad. And suddenly messages from NPR begin to come - they ask me to get out of their territory! How so?
I arrived at this colony 30 years before them.
How does it even work?

Is there some way to "delineate the boundaries" so that the AI doesn't start counting its territory with my colonies?
 

Offline Andrew

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Re: How fast is NPR developing?
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2021, 04:17:41 PM »
Just because you control some territory and have for a long time has never stopped people claiming it as theirs. Ask the Poles!
Only a colony with population counts as something the npr will notice and even then they may still claim the system if it is important enough to them (adjacent to their home system for instance). An NPR which managed to be adjacent to the Sol system claimed it despite the obvious presence, in such situations war is ineveitable.

If they are requesting you leave then war is not imminent and they may decide instead to respect your demands if the NPR see's sufficient evidence of your claim. Large population, Battleships that sort of thing. If they are demanding you leave then unless you leave they will eventually attack.