Doggone Urgans!

Polaris Sector is a sci-fi 4X game that offers exciting exploration, detailed resource management, unique research mechanics and intense tactical combat.
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RandomAttack
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Doggone Urgans!

Post by RandomAttack » Tue May 10, 2016 5:07 pm

Interesting thing in my latest game. I'm whuppin' up on the Urgans pretty good after they declared war on me. Then, all these stealth Corvettes w/Bombs started showing up all over and bombing my planets. I was pretty upset since many were waaay behind the lines, the starlane network favored me greatly, and I couldn't figure out how in hell they could even get there. Then I found a "stargate tunnel" (dotted line)-- first I'd seen. They tunneled into the heart of my empire! Couldn't see the line until I just happened to park a ship there. Apparently they realized they couldn't beat me in a straight-up fight, so they decided to terrorize me into a peace treaty. Great strategic move on their part and hats off to the AI in this case. :D

Although I still don't think any Corvette should have the fuel to go thru a looooong tunnel and then travel around seemingly forever. Even on a suicide run they would run out of fuel very quickly. Nonetheless, the AI made great use of the tools at hand. I'm really liking this game the more I play it.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by Protagoras01 » Tue May 10, 2016 7:39 pm

I haven't tried this. But if you put camo mods on the corvette bomber you would be able to steal fuel from the worlds you bomb.. at least I think

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by BiteNibbleChomp » Wed May 11, 2016 10:58 am

Explaining the corvette jumping to your homeworlds.
wormhole.jpg
wormhole.jpg (4.42 KiB) Viewed 3252 times
Using the conventional star lanes, the corvette would take the really long path around the outside. The shortcut they have built is a warping of space (ie the shortcut through the middle). This shortcut would require a far smaller amount of fuel.

There's no other simple explanation of this without going into complicated physics stuff.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by RandomAttack » Wed May 11, 2016 3:49 pm

I understand that part. But with my ship parked at the "other end" it showed the length as being (IIRC) around 7K HU. It was quite a distance all by itself-- esp. by a Corvette-sized ship. Guess it could have been stealing fuel-- I can't rule it out as a viable answer.

I'm just skeptical of these small ships, with limited space, that are all: very fast, have extreme range, loaded with power-intensive modules (bombs, stealth, etc.) In Program Management there is an old saying: "Cost, Schedule, Performance-- pick any two". The AI seems to get all three (plus maybe a couple more)... :P

Edit: It's clearly an AI thing. I started up a new game as Urgans, thinking maybe they have super-Corvettes or something. If you strip off all the weapons you can squeeze a bomb module in with a range of 5K and a speed of ~3. So how you can have bombs AND speed AND range AND stealth is a quantum mystery I guess...

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by HerpInYourDerp » Wed May 11, 2016 5:18 pm


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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by jamus34 » Sun Jun 05, 2016 4:06 pm

One of thereasons I gave up on PS for the short term. My fear was that since they didn't need fuel containerstwhile they could load up with other things (weapons, subsystems, etc). That gives the AI a major advantage. Combined with not having a good way to secure borders it made it way too easy to get back-doored in a war.

I like a lot of what PS does but this has been the biggest issue for me to get past.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by bjgrt » Sun Jun 05, 2016 4:46 pm

Just build a Battle satellite and 3 (it's important) radar stations in each system. Don't forget to upgrade the satellites from time to time. Expensive, but doable.
Satellites will protect you against stealth bombing. Radar (long range scanner) stations - against sabotages.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by RandomAttack » Sun Jun 05, 2016 5:09 pm

Yeah...not really. Not when AI Ultra-Corvettes can cruise around BEFORE you can even build Battle Satellites (much less scanners). There is no real defense in the early game against them. If you haven't run up against this you are lucky as it happens to me about one game in three. And I've documented in another thread an AI Corvette range of at LEAST ~15K. Ridiculous.

I've shelved this game until it's either fixed or a way to mod it out is offered. Nor has the developer been forthcoming as to the extent of the issue. This is completely game-breaking to me. There is no mitigation of it-- you are either lucky enough not to see it in a given game, or you are screwed.

On a side-note, the tooltip says building more than one scanner doesn't really help. Is that untrue?

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by bjgrt » Sun Jun 05, 2016 10:01 pm

You are talking about stealth modules and stargate tunnels, so it has to be relatively late in the game. I think the only "ultra corvettes" you can meet in an early game belong to pirates - turn them off (than starting a game) if you don't like them.

Building more than one scanner (of the same type) on a ship doesn't improve anything. Long Distance Scanning Arrays are totally different. Where did you read that tooltip?

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by RandomAttack » Mon Jun 06, 2016 2:04 am

My mistake on the scanners-- I haven't played since the last screenshot I posted so must have confused them. :oops:

The original post was actually complimentary of the AI-Urgan's *tactics*-- but that it shouldn't have actually been *possible* using Corvettes given the distances involved. Frigates, ok-- but not Corvettes. Building satellites in EVERY system is a huge waste of resources on higher difficulties.

The point is that the AI gets EXTENSIVE fuel cheats from the start of the game. No one knows just how much-- it might even be infinite. Sometimes it manifests itself in totally unbelievable ways, other times it's more subtle. This doesn't seem to bother some people. It bothers me a lot. It bothers me even more that the nature/extent of the cheat has STILL not been explained. It wouldn't be acceptable in a WWII game if JU-87's could bomb New York City from France-- such a mechanic would be universally ridiculed. The equivalent shouldn't be acceptable in a space game that specifically models fuel. It's too bad, because I otherwise really like the game.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by Maddoc06_slith » Mon Jun 06, 2016 1:10 pm

jamus34 wrote:One of thereasons I gave up on PS for the short term. My fear was that since they didn't need fuel containerstwhile they could load up with other things (weapons, subsystems, etc). That gives the AI a major advantage. Combined with not having a good way to secure borders it made it way too easy to get back-doored in a war.

I like a lot of what PS does but this has been the biggest issue for me to get past.
I've done the same thing.... Shelved Polaris Sector until this gets sorted out. It's a game-breaker for me, in an otherwise great game.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by bjgrt » Mon Jun 06, 2016 4:35 pm

It's interesting that you are strongly rejecting almost all the features that had been added lately to make the game more challenging, and you are not alone. I don't have the stats, but if you are not a minority - the author had "made a wrong turn" about a year and a half ago.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by RandomAttack » Mon Jun 06, 2016 5:39 pm

Not sure what you mean by "all the features". It's really just one: the fuel cheat. I find it just ruins any sense of strategic play. For example, I play mostly as human. Given the mega-range AI Corvettes, every game devolves to my racing to Frigates before I lose systems well out of range of my OWN Corvettes. If I make longer range Corvettes I have to gut them of weapons-- which means they are not effective. If I make it to Frigates before AI "super Corvettes" come cruising in from all over, I win-- easily. If I don't then I'm fairly helpless. I understand this fuel cheat doesn't show itself every game-- seems about 1 in 3 for me. It's often enough that there's no other guaranteed effective strategy than "the race to Frigates". This is boring. I would like to play different strategies, but can't take the chance due to the fuel cheat.

I can live with/mod just about anything else (and they are minor things to me). :) I'm not familiar with any predecessor game or the development process, so am just taking PS at face value. There are soooo many options in this game, I just can't believe we can't have one to play w/o the fuel cheat.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by Firefox440 » Tue Jun 07, 2016 9:14 am

From my point of view, without the fuel cheat for the AI, there will be a big problem. With all probability, the AI would be stuck at a small sector.

And for the record, at all games the AI cheats. The unique thing here, it could be to tell to the human player the amount of fuel from AI´s ships.

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by RandomAttack » Tue Jun 07, 2016 3:23 pm

Why? The scouts/transports/colonizers don't NEED cheats as they can have huge ranges already, so it's definitely not needed for expansion. The real impact is on early combat ships-- Corvettes in particular. Why should ANY colony (AI or player) be in danger from Corvettes when the nearest enemy colony is 14K away?

No offense, but these broad sweeping statements like "all AI cheat", "it's a technical issue", etc., are just irrelevant. You want to boost the AI? That's what the difficulty settings are for. The AI can have all the bonuses (tech, resources, production, etc.) it wants, plus it's easily modded. Like just about every other game in creation. But this "infinite fuel" thing is way out of whack since it's KEY to the game and apparently can't be modded. And we STILL don't know the extent of it. If the game becomes totally broken if the AI doesn't have the fuel cheat, then there's a serious fundamental problem with the game.

Again, give us a switch/option and let's see what happens. I'm totally confident I could offset the fuel cheat by giving the AI OTHER advantages instead-- and it would be fun trying to tweak/balance it. But given the developer's position on this to date, I have a feeling that AI fuel was just totally written out of the game and can't be introduced w/o major changes-- which for me means it mostly sits on the shelf instead of being played regularly. Usually I just shrug, write off the cost and move on, but this game is otherwise so good I hate to just abandon it. Another "might have been". It's a real shame. :cry:

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Re: Doggone Urgans!

Post by Maddoc06_slith » Wed Jun 08, 2016 12:40 pm

RandomAttack wrote:Why? The scouts/transports/colonizers don't NEED cheats as they can have huge ranges already, so it's definitely not needed for expansion. The real impact is on early combat ships-- Corvettes in particular. Why should ANY colony (AI or player) be in danger from Corvettes when the nearest enemy colony is 14K away?

No offense, but these broad sweeping statements like "all AI cheat", "it's a technical issue", etc., are just irrelevant. You want to boost the AI? That's what the difficulty settings are for. The AI can have all the bonuses (tech, resources, production, etc.) it wants, plus it's easily modded. Like just about every other game in creation. But this "infinite fuel" thing is way out of whack since it's KEY to the game and apparently can't be modded. And we STILL don't know the extent of it. If the game becomes totally broken if the AI doesn't have the fuel cheat, then there's a serious fundamental problem with the game.

Again, give us a switch/option and let's see what happens. I'm totally confident I could offset the fuel cheat by giving the AI OTHER advantages instead-- and it would be fun trying to tweak/balance it. But given the developer's position on this to date, I have a feeling that AI fuel was just totally written out of the game and can't be introduced w/o major changes-- which for me means it mostly sits on the shelf instead of being played regularly. Usually I just shrug, write off the cost and move on, but this game is otherwise so good I hate to just abandon it. Another "might have been". It's a real shame. :cry:
It is indeed a good game. But strategy is loses unless this is fixed.

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