Author Topic: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak  (Read 16757 times)

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
I think the main problem when it comes to balancing is that the type of combat you're trying to emulate inherently doesn't make any sense. Not your fault by any means, the game is utterly brilliant, but what I mean is that you're hampered by the source material. I never truly appreciated how illogical the tactics in BSG are until the first mission of Disapora, where the Theseus puts out a giant wall of firepower. And then I remembered a part of the show where the Galactica goes even further and surrounds herself in a 360 degree sphere of exploding shrapnel. But being able to fly around and look at it from any angle, and see how absurdly effective it is by watching missiles and raiders get destroyed almost as soon as you target them really makes it clear how...dumb...the Cylons are.

Consider: it's pretty clear from the series that the newest battlestars are being built based on the same logic and tactics as the very first ones. Big, heavily armed spacecraft carriers that can put up withering amounts of firepower that shreds strikecraft and is nearly impenetrable to missiles, and are so heavily armored that they can withstand munitions up to and including nukes, so even the occasional missile that gets through isn't a big deal. The Cylons obviously know this, they fought battlestars in the first war.

So why in the world, in spending 40 forty years preparing for their genocide, did they build their order of battle around strikecraft and missiles? Ok, yeah, they had their hacking trump card, but they couldn't be 100% sure it would work, and if it didn't they would be left slugging it out with 120 capital ships that are optimized to absolutely rape them.

 

Offline Ace

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Well, when you consider the number of raiders and missiles a baseship should be able to fire at once, they are designed to overwhelm a battlestar's defenses.

Now for a game we have limited object counts before systems explode, so all 864 raiders per baseship and 720 missiles (120 banks, volleys of six at once) per volley is not something systems can really handle.
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Offline MatthTheGeek

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Diaspora's balancing is biased toward the player. If the player was a Cylon, it would probably work the other way around. That's called gameplay.
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Offline karajorma

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Yep, one of the most obvious examples of this is the fact that Cylon capship missiles are slower than in the show so that you have a hope in hell of shooting them down. Of course that did mean we had to tone the effectiveness of the flak screen down so that an occasional missile would get through.
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Offline Dragon

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Well, when you consider the number of raiders and missiles a baseship should be able to fire at once, they are designed to overwhelm a battlestar's defenses.

Now for a game we have limited object counts before systems explode, so all 864 raiders per baseship and 720 missiles (120 banks, volleys of six at once) per volley is not something systems can really handle.
It's not that computers can't handle this kind of load (they can, as evidenced my numerous games, mostly RTSes), but the game engine is not only bad at this, it has some hard caps on object number. Also, did a Basestar actually launch all it's Raiders from the racks at any time in the show?

 

Offline karajorma

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
RTSs use much lower poly models than something like Diaspora does. While the engine does have flaws, let's not start inventing ones.
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Offline Dragon

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
The hard caps are a hard fact (pardon the pun :)). Computers most likely could handle this kind of object load, but FSO isn't the best optimized engine in the world, if the CPU load is any indication. The recent optimization make it a lot better, but hard caps still remain.

 

Offline karajorma

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
I want to play an FPS where there are 30,000 soldiers all fighting at once. Don't tell me it can't be done, I've seen Rome Total War do it 4-5 years ago! :p


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Offline Dragon

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Go play ArmA II. :) I haven't seen a mission with 30,000 units, but a computer powerful enough (and models done well enough) could support an FPS version of one of the smaller TW battles. 1000 AI units at once is definitely doable in RV, though it requires quite a computer. Also, unlike FSO, I don't think newer engines would actively prevent you from trying that, as long as you have an extra set of CPUs and top of the line GPU to actually render the huge battle. FSO caps at 400 ships in mission, and you can't go higher no matter what.

But as I said:
Also, did a Basestar actually launch all it's Raiders from the racks at any time in the show?
I haven't watched very much BSG, but I haven't seen shots of hundreds of Raiders pouring from a Basestar anywhere on the BSG wiki. That wouldn't be an easy thing to do on the set, either. If it didn't happen in the show, then there's no reason for it to happen in Diaspora.

 

Offline Hades

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
I haven't watched very much BSG, but I haven't seen shots of hundreds of Raiders pouring from a Basestar anywhere on the BSG wiki. That wouldn't be an easy thing to do on the set, either. If it didn't happen in the show, then there's no reason for it to happen in Diaspora.
I haven't seen a picture of the Loki wing launching from the Carthage on the HLP wiki either. Does that mean it never happened?

Plus there have been scenes in the show where what could easily be hundreds of raiders launched from a Basestar at once. (too many to count)

Don't try to act like you actually know what you're talking about when it comes to BSG if you've barely watched any of it. Hell, "Don't talk about something you actually know little about" might be good advice for you in general.
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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
you mean the notoriously unoptimised and buggy arma 2?
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Offline Angelus

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
There's at the moment no PC powerful enough to allow you to have hundreds of Fighters in an furball with capships.
And as someone who tried that just recently with an old mod of mine, i can tell ya: Nope.

The i7 system was boging down faster then anyone can say frak.
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Offline Dragon

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
you mean the notoriously unoptimised and buggy arma 2?
Well, it's a bit buggy and a resource hog, but you can't deny you can have a lot of units running around.
Don't try to act like you actually know what you're talking about when it comes to BSG if you've barely watched any of it. Hell, "Don't talk about something you actually know little about" might be good advice for you in general.
That's why I asked if there had been such scenes (twice, BTW), in case you failed to notice it (or ignored this fact out of spite). Episodes I've seen didn't deal with space battles, but rather the internal struggles within the Colonial Fleet (well, there was one Cylon boarding action with some Heavy Raiders, but that's it). I've actually done research on wiki, but it didn't gave a conclusive answer, so I asked here.

Anyway, it should be possible to bump the number of Raiders somewhat. Diaspora effects look awesome, but are actually rather subdued, using few particles and no animated projectile effect bitmaps. A Basestar wouldn't launch all it's Raiders at once anyway, since it'd be left defenseless if something went wrong and they were all shot down. Perhaps a "massive battle"-style mission with, say 100 Raiders of different types and a large amount of Colonials, plus the Basestar(s) and a Sobek-class BS could give an idea how well such a mission performs. This could put a little strain on the projectile limit though. I think I might even try that once I have some time (meaning: not soon).

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Already done by Sushi.

Also, Dragon, there is no 'set' for BSG VFX shots. They use CGI. There are definitely a number of VFX shots of base stars launching huge numbers of raiders (and a couple instances in the show where their entire Raider complements are drawn away by a ruse, leaving the basestars exposed to close attack.)

 

Offline Swifty

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
I'd rather have hard limits cock block designers rather than trying to debug nebulous "malloc failed" errors caused by excessive objects so I wouldn't mistake them for a random memory leak.

 

Offline Nighteyes

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Dragon, I'm reading this thread and honestly I don't get what your on about... the 400 ship cap? every game has limits, strategy games in particular, Starcraft has what, 200 units per army? FSO has much more advanced AI, and you don't need 400 ships in a mission to make it a good and enjoyable mission for the player.

 

Offline newman

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
RTS and 1st person perspective games just do things differently from every perspective. Saying a RTS has a ton of units doesn't mean a space sim can, or should. There are two issues to overcome; engine not being the latest modern one designed to take advantage of modern hardware notwithstanding, having too much units in a mission will bog down any hardware. And remember that you need to make it work across many different platforms - there's no better way of getting a reputation of a laggy, bugged, badly optimized game than having it only work well on 1% of the systems.

Secondly, unlike movies or tv-series, a game of this type will always focus on the player character, and that player character can't dogfight 800 fighters at once. It's a matter of balancing it out so the player has something to do that still feels important to the larger picture somehow, while everything feels enormous without actually using hundreds of fighters / dozens of capships / etc. We can talk about hardware and engine supporting or not supporting these enormous missions, but the fact remains there's very little reason to do this as we can actually make a good, fun, balanced game without frying your hardware and taking a year to do a single mission :)

Lastly, even in Diaspora's current state, it would be unplayable on a lot of systems were it not for a ton of Swifty's optimizations, so I wouldn't be too quick to wish for more particles / effects / fighters / general explodey awesomeness. As someone said.. "it's a game, not an art show" :)
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Offline Cerebus

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Re: Cylon Baseship missiles and nukes need more resistance to flak
Im starting to compensate for this in my mission by giving nukes to the heavy raiders, they carry the football to the endzone so to speak

it goes both ways, if you have the sobec launch it's "ICBMs" the raiders will shoot them down as well if you dont clear them out, they just cant stop the direct fire weapons. 


as far as the Cylons being "stupid," well they aren't stupid, they're immature.  they're not the near omnipotent kind of AI beings, and they are deeply personally flawed and emotionally immature, much like the replicants from blade runner.  If you haven't watched the BSG movie "The Plan," do.  It's not on netflix and I had missed the fact it came out at all (2010?)  If follows the the series from the very beginning (dont want to say when it ends) but from the Cylon perspective.  It provides some serious insight into the Cylon psychology and answers a lot that was speculative before.  The CNP was the trump card, Cavil was not interested in a contracted war with humanity, he wanted to exterminate the entire species in one grand opus and be done.  They're not stupid, they just fell prey to hubris.  The Galactica and the fleet survived, that was never intended.  They didn't have to be tough when they had an off switch for the entire enemy fleet.  They were confident in the CNP, and Cavil had a personal interest in keeping a time table due to "front row seat to a holocaust" he wished to put the final 5 through.  Their motives are not clear cut, hence flawed. 

in the show, neither battlestar was at full strength (not sure how many, but there was a portion of Pegasus crew on shore leave, hence the drafting civilians, and still managed to do quite well against multiple basestars across numerous engagements, years of heavy service, and the galactica was seriously outdated (thank the gods) A fully functional "modern" battlestar with a full crew and some serious motivation to fight should kick all sorts of arse.

that, and with resurrection, a baseship is almost akin to a UAV, and survivability really isn't a major concern