Some Small Nigglies

4X strategy game from Proxy Studios

Moderators: Pandora Moderators, Slitherine Core

Post Reply
NightReaper
Corporal - Strongpoint
Corporal - Strongpoint
Posts: 50
Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2013 6:01 pm

Some Small Nigglies

Post by NightReaper » Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:12 am

Having come to the party late, I have played through as each of the factions up through mid-transcendence and have only two issues that really stand out for me in the game play. I did a cursory check of the forums and couldn't find much so I will post here:

1) What is the order of engagement when you are attacking an opponents stack? Does it start at the top and proceed to the bottom, or does the best suited defending unit always field the attack? From a tactical point of view, the attacker has the initiative and should be able to choose the point of attack (unit to attack) or am I missing something? On many of my combat actions it seemed to me that the AI always chose the unit with the best chance against the attacker. Can you select which unit you want to attack first? Maybe a small thing, but sure adds to strong tactical immersion for me.

2) I have a couple of suggestions for the aircraft. Why don't they get a better line of sight than sea-borne or land units (at least one extra tile, but I like two even better) whenever they are not in a city/base of operations? Lastly, their ability to stay in flight indefinitely makes them an extremely overpowered scout and negates the survey technology to a degree as well as bugging my sensibilities somewhat. The mechanism in the original SMAC was quite realistic in that they could only travel half of their movement before having to return to a base or perish. Six out and six back for a total distance of 12 tiles in Pandora unless you change their movement points. Nothing precludes you sending them on a suicide mission, but being able to fly indefinitely seems a little OP to me. It also opens the door to watercraft that can carry a limited number of aircraft; the possibility of a technology for a forward deployed tactical airfield; and last but not least a good reason to have diplomatic relations with other factions (non-aggression and/or alliance) with the caveat that you cannot conduct combat strikes from any base other than your own unless your ally is at full state of war also, which is a little questionable in the current game with the diplomacy issue around alliances as it now stands. It would go without saying that your assets would be moved back to closest home base if you and your ally decided to split the sheets. Has this been tossed around already? If so, my bad, if not maybe up for consideration in any patches coming down the pike...would really like an answer on the first point though regarding attackers initiative. Thanks, for a great game!! :D

jdmillard
Sergeant First Class - Panzer IIIL
Sergeant First Class - Panzer IIIL
Posts: 373
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2013 7:20 pm

Re: Some Small Nigglies

Post by jdmillard » Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:42 am

What if the indefinite flight were kept, but you could only fly a set number of tiles away from any of your cities? Like air zones or something. Then add a unit like you suggested that provides a "forward deployed tactical airfield" of which planes may fly within a certain number of tiles. This unit would have an insane amount of upkeep cost and would require a lot of production time. I would be okay if this unit were limited to the ocean and simply called an aircraft carrier. This way, you use strategy with air power, but you don't have to micromanage aircraft fuel. I would love something like this, but the problem with it is that everyone would just use tanks and forego aircraft altogether. Plus we all know that our aircraft carriers would be the first things nuked by the enemy thus destroying all our aircraft if they couldn't return to an air zone within the next turn.

fortydayweekend
Senior Corporal - Destroyer
Senior Corporal - Destroyer
Posts: 100
Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 6:40 pm

Re: Some Small Nigglies

Post by fortydayweekend » Wed Nov 27, 2013 5:23 am

I like the range idea, it's like "6 out and 6 back" but without having to actually do the movement over and over. A "fuel pod" device could then be added to increase range.

Also on aircraft being powerful, I've never seen the AI build an anti-aircraft weapon, even when I'm building and attacking with lots of planes. Is this just me?
NightReaper wrote:1) What is the order of engagement when you are attacking an opponents stack? Does it start at the top and proceed to the bottom, or does the best suited defending unit always field the attack? From a tactical point of view, the attacker has the initiative and should be able to choose the point of attack (unit to attack) or am I missing something? On many of my combat actions it seemed to me that the AI always chose the unit with the best chance against the attacker. Can you select which unit you want to attack first? Maybe a small thing, but sure adds to strong tactical immersion for me.
The idea is that you can stack units to provide better defence, so the best defender is chosen. The downside is that stacks are vulnerable to artillery and operations. The attacker has the initiative in using bombardments to soften stacks up, and in choosing which units to attack with. Being able to choose the units on both sides would make attacking too easy and you'd need more defence bonuses to make up for it.

NightReaper
Corporal - Strongpoint
Corporal - Strongpoint
Posts: 50
Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2013 6:01 pm

Re: Some Small Nigglies

Post by NightReaper » Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:11 am

I was referring to their mobility and 'legs' on the field when I called them overpowered reconnaissance used as scouts. I, likewise have not run into any AI flak, but I have found myself wondering if flak is cost effective, because most of my aircraft are easily taken down with two volleys on most occasions and by units with a malus regarding things that fly so go figure. As to the comments about 'nukes', you are right on and even orbital bombardment can be a game breaker. That's why I think that they need to be moved farther out in the tech tree for starters and that quite possibly be sanctioned by all factions by a one level diplomacy drop when used including declaration of war if they continue to be used. Maybe not for the orbital bombardment and definitely not for drop pods, but a MAD ( mutually assured destruction) scenario is not in the best interest of all in the end, and should be cause for alarm with all factions. Whoever can rush those military operations techs and has had the good fortune to get a good starting territory is nigh on impossible to put down if they go on an early operations rampage. Maybe orbital bombardment could be used without penalty as a defensive counter inside or within a two hex range of the users territory/outpost or city that has a zone of control...just a thought. Anyway, thanks for the response on the attack initiative, what you described is what I'm seeing and microing the combat can get wearisome, I know.

fortydayweekend
Senior Corporal - Destroyer
Senior Corporal - Destroyer
Posts: 100
Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 6:40 pm

Re: Some Small Nigglies

Post by fortydayweekend » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:15 am

Planes die really quickly if you use them on the front lines all the time - it's way too tempting to throw them forward with no support (e.g. as scouts or to take out transports) and you can lose them easily as the AI is happy to sacrifice a unit or 2 to take them down. If you hold them back and try not to ever let them get attacked they last a lot longer. Troopers with missiles seem to be pretty effective against planes, at least for city defence, and a lot cheaper than AAA tanks - I'm happily going without AAA myself even though I'm up against a lot of Ascension planes right now. Not sure which is best though.

Initially I thought that artillery and operations were too powerful, but I think that was mainly because I was just obliterating troops with no armour, or being hit with 5 nukes at once on a city with no defence buildings. They're not as effective against equal-tech opponents. I don't know much about how nukes play out and what the AI strategy is against factions of equal power.

Post Reply

Return to “Pandora - First Contact”