Author Topic: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?  (Read 1303 times)

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What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
Currently replaying FS2 Open for probably the 5th time after a 2 year break. Having played games like Warthunder and Starsector in the meantime I've realized there's some gaps in the playable ship rosters that I think could be filled.

In the Terran fleet you have the Loki and Pegasus interceptors which are both fast and have great agility but poor firepower. The Vasudans have the Serapis which feels quite like a Japanese Zero.  In real life we've had a variety of twin engine bomber interceptors like the P-38 Lightning that had poor agility but very good firepower and engines. A wide heavy fighter with engine speed and afterburners with similar performance to a Horus but the maneuverability of a Medusa bomber. Similar amount of firepower to an Ursa or Hercules (2 nose, 4 offset wing). It would be good at bomber fighting but poor at dogfighting, thought with enough speed to escape by hitting the after burners and then turning around later instead of turning within a furball.

For the Vasudans, I was wondering what they would bring as an equivalent to the Ares and Eriynes late game elite fighters? I suppose the Tauret might count since its got similar stats to the Ares, although its presented as a standard heavy fighter thats been in service while the Ares is just off the production line.

 
Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
One of my ideas for a late-game elite zod fighter would be something that's quite agile and resilient, but doesn't have the raw firepower that the Ares & Erinyes have, sort of like a souped-up Perseus or maybe a Serapis with actual armor. It would fit in the trend of Vasudan fighter being lighter than their Terran counterparts, while offering a different type of "super-fighter" experience.

Either that or the late-game elite fighter was actually the Sekhmet all along. :)


Regarding other potential roles, I do feel like there would be a niche for a fighter-bomber, something that'd be the size of a Herc 2, but with one secondary bank capable of carrying a small number of bombs. Something half-way between heavy fighters and light bombers.

 
Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
The Erinyes is is the Terran agile heavy gunner fighter while the Ares is its high end missile truck. Especially with a maxim or kayser loadout, there's not much the Shivans can throw at them other than overwhelming numbers.

In terms of true gaps, the Terrans lack an interceptor with the firepower to burn down bombers fast enough to avoid convoy damage. The Perseus is an amazing dogfighter, but is undergunned.

Vasudans tend to overspecialize their fighters traits to the exclusion of the others. What they're truly missing is a fighter as annoying agile, armored, and persistent as the Seth was in the FS1 campaign.

 

Offline Nyctaeus

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
- Both GTVA member species lacks Apollo. Myrmidon is not Apollo. Myrmidon is more like attack fighter perfect for raiding convoys and supply depots, but due to large profile, bad positioning of primary firepoints and lack of access to Harpoon, it's pretty mediocre dogfighter.

- Vasudans are in even worse spot. Serapis sucks. It's armed and armored like interceptor, but it's slow. In fact there is nothing that Horus and even Tauret can't do better then Serapis. Tauret is excellent and very versatile craft, but it's not answer for every situation. The only saving graces of Serapis are it's handling and access to Maxim, but still not really worth it.

Like c'mon, Apollo is awesome. Despite being start fighter, it's very versatile nature makes it very effective in lategame. It's excellent dogfighter unlike Hercules. In FS1, I prefer dogfighting only with Valkyrie and Athena.

- Both factions lacks Athena-like craft, tho Myrmidon can do the same thing as Athena. Athena is one of my very favorite crafts in FS1, and would be useful against ships equipped with beam cannons.

- Terrans lacks real interceptor in FS2. Perseus is without doubt, an outstanding craft but it's slow for interceptor standards. Perseus is more like successor of Apollo.

- And finally, a good terran heavy bomber. I love Artemis, but it's too light to engage destroyers and it's bad dogfighter. Boa sucks sucks sucks in every aspect. In FS1 all 3 terran bombers are very good, but in FS2... Well, enough said. I'm glad that GTVA still uses Medusa and Ursa.
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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
One thing I think could be neat is an experimental superfighter which can fill all fighter based roles and act as a bomber.  Maybe it could be a player exclusive ship that is only available after completing a certain number of bonus objectives to really give that Alpha 1 feel, although its use should result in being targeted more heavily by the enemy.  The closest I have seen to that is the special interceptor exclusive to the player character in the Freespace 2 The Aftermath Reboot (albeit only in a few missions) which cannot carry bombs but has insane missile capacity and near 100% weapons compatibility.  Enemies should also have their own equivalent superfighters which could work as boss battles
« Last Edit: September 03, 2021, 04:37:38 pm by ShivanSlayer »

 

Offline CT27

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
- And finally, a good terran heavy bomber. I love Artemis, but it's too light to engage destroyers and it's bad dogfighter. Boa sucks sucks sucks in every aspect. In FS1 all 3 terran bombers are very good, but in FS2... Well, enough said. I'm glad that GTVA still uses Medusa and Ursa.


What do you (or anyone else who wishes to reply) think needs to be improved the most about the Boanerges?

 
Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
- And finally, a good terran heavy bomber. I love Artemis, but it's too light to engage destroyers and it's bad dogfighter. Boa sucks sucks sucks in every aspect. In FS1 all 3 terran bombers are very good, but in FS2... Well, enough said. I'm glad that GTVA still uses Medusa and Ursa.


What do you (or anyone else who wishes to reply) think needs to be improved the most about the Boanerges?

For starters, it needs to be better armed.  With only 2 guns, it isn't useful for anything other than things it can shoot bombs at, and it makes it a pain to disarm ships or destroy subsystems even with the Maxim cannon.  Slow as the Ursa is, I have gotten fighter kills in it by luring fighters into slugging matches where the bomber's armor tanks incoming fire while its own guns eat through the enemy fighter's lighter armor.  With the 5 guns, I can also easily destroy turrets and subsystems, especially with a Maxim.  Also, its ammunition capacity needs to be balanced.  It's a pain being reloaded with uneven weapons capacities as the support ship has problems reloading the bomber's bombs past the full capacity of the smallest bay.  Also, the Boanerges should carry the Tempest

 

Offline Nyctaeus

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
- And finally, a good terran heavy bomber. I love Artemis, but it's too light to engage destroyers and it's bad dogfighter. Boa sucks sucks sucks in every aspect. In FS1 all 3 terran bombers are very good, but in FS2... Well, enough said. I'm glad that GTVA still uses Medusa and Ursa.


What do you (or anyone else who wishes to reply) think needs to be improved the most about the Boanerges?
Only 2 guns with ****ty placement, no turret, low HP for heavy bomber, can't carry Harpoon, weak afterburner.

What does not have all of those issues? Ursa. I see 0 reasons to use Boa over Ursa. Thanks to ability to carry Harpoons and good setup of the bank with 2 gun, Ursa can actually dogfight on lower difficulty levels. Turret seems useless, but it's not. The AI behaves differently if something is shooting at it, so the turret actually forces enemy fighters to go maneuvers, driving enemy fighters off.

Boa and Ursa have the same amount of shielding, but Boa has significantly less HP. Enemy escort will usually strip you down from shields quickly, but you can protect yourself flying Ursa. The extra HP Ursa has can save your ass.

The higher HP of Ursa is actually the most important thing here, because AAAfs and SAAAs of enemy warships pierce shields. Boa dies from such beams very quickly, while in Ursa you will survive more shots.

Also, in Ursa you can pack a Maxim into the triple bank and safely kill anti-fighter beams from safe range.
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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
I almost always pick the Ursa over the Boa.  The only exception is when I am dealing with ships I need to get to quickly before they escape

 

Offline Trivial Psychic

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
Within the context of the story, I'm betting that even by FS2 the Boa still costs a hell of a lot less than the Ursa does.  That would account for the lower armor of the Boa.  If could really use a defensive turret between the engines though.

Has anyone noticed that the player turret AI will always target whatever the player is targeting?  Is there anyway to force it to do otherwise (without going into cap-ship control stuff), so a turret can defend you properly during a bombing run rather than shooting at the cap-ship you're aiming for?
The Trivial Psychic Strikes Again!

 

Offline Colonol Dekker

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
Need an A10 analogue.   For the funsies.

 

Offline 0rph3u5

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
Has anyone noticed that the player turret AI will always target whatever the player is targeting?  Is there anyway to force it to do otherwise (without going into cap-ship control stuff), so a turret can defend you properly during a bombing run rather than shooting at the cap-ship you're aiming for?

Untested but could work:
Code: [Select]
$Name: GTB Medusa
+nocreate
$Subsystem: turret01a,5,1.0
$Default PBanks: ( "Avenger#turret" )
$Flags: ( "no subsystem targeting" )

Code: [Select]
$Name: Avenger#turret
[...]
$Flags: ( "small only" )
"When you work with water, you have to know and respect it. When you labour to subdue it, you have to understand that one day it may rise up and turn all your labours into nothing. For what is water, which seeks to make all things level, which has no taste or colour of its own, but a liquid form of Nothing?" - Graham Swift, Waterland

==================

"I am Curiosity, and I've always wondered what would become of you, here at the end of the world." - The Guide/The Curious Other, Othercide

"As you sought to steal a kingdom for yourself, so must you do again, a thousand times over. For a theft, a true theft, must be practiced to be earned." - The terms of Nyrissa's curse, Pathfinder: Kingmaker

"...because they are not Dragons."

 
Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
My very short response to the title would be:

A decent FS2 Terran interceptor (the Perseus is basically a copy and paste Apollo anyway)
A durable FS2 Terran bomber
Ships with decently placed primaries.
How do you kill a hydra?

You starve it to death.

 

Offline 0rph3u5

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
Ships with decently placed primaries.

just apply these
Code: [Select]
$Name: GVF Thoth
+nocreate
$Convergence:
+Standard
+Distance: 1020

$Name: GVF Serapis
+nocreate
$Convergence:
+Automatic
+Minimum Distance: 250
"When you work with water, you have to know and respect it. When you labour to subdue it, you have to understand that one day it may rise up and turn all your labours into nothing. For what is water, which seeks to make all things level, which has no taste or colour of its own, but a liquid form of Nothing?" - Graham Swift, Waterland

==================

"I am Curiosity, and I've always wondered what would become of you, here at the end of the world." - The Guide/The Curious Other, Othercide

"As you sought to steal a kingdom for yourself, so must you do again, a thousand times over. For a theft, a true theft, must be practiced to be earned." - The terms of Nyrissa's curse, Pathfinder: Kingmaker

"...because they are not Dragons."

 

Offline EatThePath

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
One thing I think could be neat is an experimental superfighter which can fill all fighter based roles and act as a bomber.  Maybe it could be a player exclusive ship that is only available after completing a certain number of bonus objectives to really give that Alpha 1 feel, although its use should result in being targeted more heavily by the enemy.  The closest I have seen to that is the special interceptor exclusive to the player character in the Freespace 2 The Aftermath Reboot (albeit only in a few missions) which cannot carry bombs but has insane missile capacity and near 100% weapons compatibility.  Enemies should also have their own equivalent superfighters which could work as boss battles
An experimental superfighter that carries tons of missiles, any gun, and can do a bit of bombing you say? Hmmm...
Name your damn turrets and sounds! Numbers alone aren't helpful!
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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
It's basically a Macross VF fighter and I have no problems with this.

 
Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
One thing I think could be neat is an experimental superfighter which can fill all fighter based roles and act as a bomber.  Maybe it could be a player exclusive ship that is only available after completing a certain number of bonus objectives to really give that Alpha 1 feel, although its use should result in being targeted more heavily by the enemy.  The closest I have seen to that is the special interceptor exclusive to the player character in the Freespace 2 The Aftermath Reboot (albeit only in a few missions) which cannot carry bombs but has insane missile capacity and near 100% weapons compatibility.  Enemies should also have their own equivalent superfighters which could work as boss battles
An experimental superfighter that carries tons of missiles, any gun, and can do a bit of bombing you say? Hmmm...

I was thinking something like this

 

Offline 0rph3u5

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
One thing I think could be neat is an experimental superfighter which can fill all fighter based roles and act as a bomber.

So triple guns, hold the actual space craft?

Joking aside, complementary design is much more fun as just adding numbers on top of each other. Weaknesses make choices, advantages do not.
"When you work with water, you have to know and respect it. When you labour to subdue it, you have to understand that one day it may rise up and turn all your labours into nothing. For what is water, which seeks to make all things level, which has no taste or colour of its own, but a liquid form of Nothing?" - Graham Swift, Waterland

==================

"I am Curiosity, and I've always wondered what would become of you, here at the end of the world." - The Guide/The Curious Other, Othercide

"As you sought to steal a kingdom for yourself, so must you do again, a thousand times over. For a theft, a true theft, must be practiced to be earned." - The terms of Nyrissa's curse, Pathfinder: Kingmaker

"...because they are not Dragons."

 

Offline EatThePath

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
I agree, but I also disagree. The Achilles is a warmachine fighter that is in a class above the others, if you consider FS1 fighters to be generation 1, FS2 gen 2, and post-capella production fighters gen 3, the Achilles is gen 4. There's no g3 fighter that can stand up to it overall, and if anything beats it out in a specific area it's by the very slimmest of margins. It can't mount the Sunflare, the helios equivilent, but it can carry the Shadowhawk, the cyclops equvilent, and a wing loaded with those can do some serious bombing in a pinch.

So why would the player choose g3 fighter over the Achilles? Quite simply, they wouldn't, unless they're intentionally challenging themself. Now there is another contemporary fighter or two that will have tradeoffs to offer at that grade of fighter, but beyond that, by only making the Achilles available on certain missions for story reasons, those missions can ask more of the player and their wing than missions where you fly g3 fighters. This design is still to an extent being proven out, but I think it can lead to a useful diversity of experience. 
Name your damn turrets and sounds! Numbers alone aren't helpful!
"if disco is dead then I am the laser lich"
"...[Warmachine] keeps changing as fast as EatThePath can force the engine to do his dark bidding..."

 

Offline 0rph3u5

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Re: What kinds of Fighters and Bombers is Freespace missing?
Compare that to the balance adjustments I've made for Vega Must Burn, in order to make the Seth no longer be an automatic pick for any mission.

All Vasudan fighters gain gun covergence 1020 from the ship's center - that's slightly outside the range of the Avenger and Prometheus; Flail#PVN introduced to adjust the AI's aiming behavior.
All Vasudan fighter lost the ability to carry the Fury - redudant because of the existence of the Fang - and the MX-50 - replaced with the Mako. (The MX-50 has buff that makes it comparable to the Rockeye, the Mako is similar damage-wise).
The Prometheus' damage is increased from 20 to 25.


PVF Seth:
- changed secondary load limits from 40+80 to 40+60
- first secondary bank will no longer accept Phoenix V, Barracuda and Stilletto (also the Havoc and the Cluster Bomb, but not relevant in this chase)
- second secondary bank will no longer accept Mako & Interceptor

PVF Horus
- changed secondary load limits from 40+40 to 50+30
- first secondary bank will no longer accept Phoenix V (also the Havoc, but not relevant in this chase)

PVF Thoth
- changed secondary load limit from 80 to 100

PVB Osiris
- changed secondary load limits from 40+40+20 to 20+40+40
- first secondary bank will no longer accept Phoenix V, Barracuda and Stilletto (also the Havoc, Cluster Bomb and Tsunami, but not relevant in this chase)
- second and third secondary banks will no longer accept Mako & Interceptor
(- all banks will now also accept the Synaptic but not relevant)

This pushes the Seth out of the "always the best choice" by taking away the ability to double carry any munition other than the Fang and the Hornet and limits it footprint as discount-bomber by taking away its ability to carry more Stilletto or Barracuda than the Osiris.
The Horus also looses the ability to double carry the Phoenix V and gets its missile load decreased because the gun convergence setting means its primary weapons are no longer at a huge disadvantage, which puts a greater emphasis on it "highest in the class" top speed.
The Thoth got a secondary load upgrade to make it competetive with the Horus and Seth, in a fashion consistent with original design - sacrficing versatility for superiority. Combined with a buff to the Prometheus' damage and its limited quantities in the campaign (you get 4 for story reasons in Mission 4, but otherwise your supply will depend on your performance in Mission 3), makes the Thoth a bit more economical with its 1x4 bank (compared to 2x2 on both the Horus and the Seth).
The changes to the Osiris are mostly about consistency - changing the loadout limits is so that the bomb capable banks have the highest load capacity.
"When you work with water, you have to know and respect it. When you labour to subdue it, you have to understand that one day it may rise up and turn all your labours into nothing. For what is water, which seeks to make all things level, which has no taste or colour of its own, but a liquid form of Nothing?" - Graham Swift, Waterland

==================

"I am Curiosity, and I've always wondered what would become of you, here at the end of the world." - The Guide/The Curious Other, Othercide

"As you sought to steal a kingdom for yourself, so must you do again, a thousand times over. For a theft, a true theft, must be practiced to be earned." - The terms of Nyrissa's curse, Pathfinder: Kingmaker

"...because they are not Dragons."