[Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

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Jacke
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[Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby Jacke » Sun Sep 07, 2014 3:31 am

What would the broken and bad ships need to at least be considered okay?

Just recently came back to playing FTL. After some Easy wins, tried my hand at Normal. On the Stealth B. Several games. Painful. :x Only got to Sector 4 once and no farther.

So, I'm going to try it on Easy. But how would we fix the problems, for the Stealth B and other bad and broken ships? I'm interested in what other FTL players think.

For Stealth B, the DA-SR 12:

1. Add Augmentation Titanium System Casing.

The Stealth B has a worse time taking hits than the Stealth A, with greater effect of hits on Weapons and Cloaking. At least give it a chance those hits won't damage the systems 15% of the time.

2. Another level in Engines or in Weapons, maybe both

The need for so much scrap for upgrades means many systems will be lacking, so I think the Stealth B needs even more.

Another level of Engines and Reactor to power it would slightly raise the chance it would dodge shots both when Cloaked and on cooldown. Another level of Weapons and Reactor for a Basic Laser would help against unshielded autoships Hacking it to death as well as fighting dual-shielded ships in Sectors 2 and 3 when it's still playing catchup with Shields and Weapons. And a single Weapons hit wouldn't knock out the Glaive Beam.
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stylesrj
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby stylesrj » Sun Sep 07, 2014 4:05 am

Every ship has their weaknesses and strengths. Don't be afraid to reset if something goes horribly wrong in the first battle.
I've done that many times with the Crystal B when I end up facing an automated ship with mind control and orbiting around a sun. But the Crystal B is good because you have 3 Crystals and a cloaking device. Beam into weapons, lock it down and you have free reign of the enemy ship.

Stealth B is pretty powerful if you play it right. I once got a Pre-igniter from an event in Sector 1. That made breezing through the rest of the game a breeze.

If anything, the Stealth C needs to be fixed - it exchanges the cloaking device for a crappy super shield generator. That thing charges up only to be taken down by laser while the enemy missile goes through and breaches life support and sets it on fire.
Jacke
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby Jacke » Sun Sep 07, 2014 4:53 am

stylesrj wrote:Every ship has their weaknesses and strengths. Don't be afraid to reset if something goes horribly wrong in the first battle.

I do reset when things go too wrong. I reset sooooo many times while trying to do a Normal run on the Stealth B, it's not funny.

But I'd like some suggestions on how to fix the broken and bad ships, including the Stealth B and C.

For the bad and broken ships, it's not that they're challenged and sometimes or often you have to reset. It's that they're so weak and some opponents you get, even in first few Sectors, can be so bad you will almost certainly be killed in a single battle no matter what you do. On an Easy win this week in the Fed A (where I unlocked the Fed B), I was almost killed in the first battle in Sector 1 when a Hacking autoship took out my Weapons and Shields (hacked one, blasted the other) and only the Artillery Beam saved me. Same ships, or others that run Hacking and Combat Drones on top of Weapons (including pairs of Pulse and Beam Laser Drones, brutal until you have a 2-level Shield), are common and will kill a Stealth B in the first two Sectors.


stylesrj wrote:I've done that many times with the Crystal B when I end up facing an automated ship with mind control and orbiting around a sun. But the Crystal B is good because you have 3 Crystals and a cloaking device. Beam into weapons, lock it down and you have free reign of the enemy ship.

FTL can be rough and even the better ships, including the best ship, the Crystal B, have initial weaknesses, so they're challenging at the start until they're addressed. But with the bad and broken ships, they have so many weaknesses to fix and some opponents so strong that they rarely get enough scrap and bits before getting blown up.

stylesrj wrote:Stealth B is pretty powerful if you play it right. I once got a Pre-igniter from an event in Sector 1. That made breezing through the rest of the game a breeze.

If anything, the Stealth C needs to be fixed - it exchanges the cloaking device for a crappy super shield generator. That thing charges up only to be taken down by laser while the enemy missile goes through and breaches life support and sets it on fire.


Getting a lucky drop or any other rare sequence of events sure helps, but you shouldn't have to depend on that to get past the first 2 Sectors (which I did on less that 10% of my many Normal Stealth B games). And I've heard about the Stealth C. When I get to Sector 8 with the Stealth B, I'll try it out so I can figure out what it needs.
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stylesrj
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby stylesrj » Sun Sep 07, 2014 5:16 am

I do reset when things go too wrong. I reset sooooo many times while trying to do a Normal run on the Stealth B, it's not funny.


Well I tried the Stealth B on Hard. First battle, I said "screw this" and never touched the Stealth ships again for anything but an Easy breeze.
Honestly, the Stealth Ships to me are just gimmicks. Fun for a little Easy romp but anything higher and you'll be wishing you had something better instead.

I even hate the Federation Cruisers. All of them. Zoltan Cruisers are even worse.

FTL can be rough and even the better ships, including the best ship, the Crystal B, have initial weaknesses, so they're challenging at the start until they're addressed. But with the bad and broken ships, they have so many weaknesses to fix and some opponents so strong that they rarely get enough scrap and bits before getting blown up.


I thought the Red-Tail was the best ship. Tried it on Hard, got to Sector 5. Lost badly. My good runs come from ships like the Crystal B, Mantis B and... Lanius B

And I've heard about the Stealth C. When I get to Sector 8 with the Stealth B, I'll try it out so I can figure out what it needs.


Play Stealth B on Easy until you hit Sector 8, then win/lose and try the Stealth C. I like how it has 3 drone slots but startup is brutal
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby The Captain » Sun Sep 07, 2014 10:53 am

There are bad ships, but I wouldn't say anything is really broken. I won the game with all the Basic Ed ships on Normal. I only have 8 wins on Hard so far, but I believe I will eventually win the game with every ship. I don't particularly like the Engi B or Rock A, but those are two of my wins on Hard.

I'm hardly an expert, but though I don't like the unStealth C, the first time I played it was on Hard, and I got to 1 jump away from the sector 7 exit. (I was kinda pissed about that.) I'm playing it again, so far only in sector 3 - we'll see how this run goes.

I wouldn't say the Stealth ships are gimmicks - you just need to learn how to play them better. You know people have won the game without shields? (How's that for a gimmick?) Well, I've only seen BE Normal; not sure if anyone's done it in AE Hard. I did it, but with modifications to the Stealth B: I swapped the Glaive for Halberd and Basic Laser, moved the Medbay to make it 4-person, added Titanium System Casing and an Engi, and some airlocks. Initially I also added L1 Shields, then later did it without. I also tried it with a fourth weapon slot, and a third drone slot (only for Hull Repair).

stylesrj, I wonder how you can say the Zoltan cruisers are worse when they've got Zoltan Shields. Hello, early defense against missiles (and other assorted weapons). I especially like the B, with two Ion Blasts and a Pike Beam. First win on Hard was with the Zoltan C, second was the B.

Personally, I don't recommend resetting. I fight to the bitter end. How else are you going to learn how to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat? (I only reset when I was only playing to unlock the Crystal cruiser, and found it was impossible to do so on a particular run.)
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stylesrj
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby stylesrj » Sun Sep 07, 2014 12:27 pm

stylesrj, I wonder how you can say the Zoltan cruisers are worse when they've got Zoltan Shields. Hello, early defense against missiles (and other assorted weapons). I especially like the B, with two Ion Blasts and a Pike Beam. First win on Hard was with the Zoltan C, second was the B.


I say I don't like them but one of my best scores is from the Noether on Normal.
Which I still find a mark of shame - I haven't even got my second-favourite ship (the Red-Tail) on my iPad high score list. Just all these Shrikes (favourite) and Carnelians (Third-favourite)

Personally, I don't recommend resetting. I fight to the bitter end. How else are you going to learn how to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat? (I only reset when I was only playing to unlock the Crystal cruiser, and found it was impossible to do so on a particular run.)


Even if the first jump is a solar flare, mind control, automated ship and you have the Crystal B? I don't need to wait 10 minutes for the ship (and my ship) to slowly die thanks :P
The Captain
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby The Captain » Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:27 pm

Ah, it wasn't clear that you hated Zoltan cruisers more.
stylesrj wrote:
Personally, I don't recommend resetting. I fight to the bitter end. How else are you going to learn how to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat? (I only reset when I was only playing to unlock the Crystal cruiser, and found it was impossible to do so on a particular run.)


Even if the first jump is a solar flare, mind control, automated ship and you have the Crystal B? I don't need to wait 10 minutes for the ship (and my ship) to slowly die thanks :P

Yes, Crystals can board the autoship. Of course, if a flare takes out your TP, you're screwed, but then you won't be waiting for 10 minutes.
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Twinge
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby Twinge » Sun Sep 07, 2014 9:22 pm

Every ship in the game can be won with consistently on Hard difficulty with good enough play. I'll also note Stealth B specifically was improved in a lot of indirect ways in AE - cheaper Shields, Hacking+Glaive being amazing, no more Zoltan Bombers in early sectors...


That said, there are some issues. The biggest issue is the game-internal-bug where all defensive drones ignore targets if they're too far left or right of the main ship -- this means Anti-Drone Drones straight-up miss 20% of the time, which can be rather unfun on the Stealth C (last run I did landed 4 of 9 shots).


In the Balance Mod I currently give Engi B Level 3 Piloting (just makes thematic sense, though it doesn't do a ton) and the Heavy Ion is buffed slightly; for Stealth C the Anti-Drone Drone resets a bit sooner, so at least when it misses it's not out forever, and the Shield+ Drone requires only 1 power; and the Rock A starts with Explosive Replicator (and half the missiles).
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Jacke
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby Jacke » Mon Sep 08, 2014 12:57 am

stylesrj wrote:My good runs come from ships like the Crystal B, Mantis B and... Lanius B

Play Stealth B on Easy until you hit Sector 8, then win/lose and try the Stealth C. I like how it has 3 drone slots but startup is brutal


Stealth B is currently in Sector 7, Rock Homeworlds. I'd like to try out those ships you like, but I need to unlock them first. :) May have to do a sequence of runs just to get the Rock, Mantis, and especially Crystal quests done.


The Captain wrote:There are bad ships, but I wouldn't say anything is really broken. ....

I wouldn't say the Stealth ships are gimmicks - you just need to learn how to play them better. You know people have won the game without shields? (How's that for a gimmick?) Well, I've only seen BE Normal; not sure if anyone's done it in AE Hard. I did it, but with modifications to the Stealth B: I swapped the Glaive for Halberd and Basic Laser, moved the Medbay to make it 4-person, added Titanium System Casing and an Engi, and some airlocks. Initially I also added L1 Shields, then later did it without. I also tried it with a fourth weapon slot, and a third drone slot (only for Hull Repair).


Found your post about modding the Stealth B enjoyable. Still need to greatly improve my skills before I consider an unshielded run at the Flagship.

I like all the ships I've played, the Kestrel A & B, the Fed A (unlocked it pre-AE and won on Normal), the Stealth A, even the Engi A. Stealth B is more demanding, even on Easy, and playing it has improved my game. Still think it and other ships need a few mods to better face the brutal startup, especially on Normal and Hard. Missiles and Hacking and Drones, oh myyyy--on one ship--in Sector 1 ?!? Talk about a learning cliff. :D

I'm getting better at this. Now I figure at any difficulty I need to put on an extra level of Weapons and other Systems just to guard against that stupid single hit that knocks out something critical, like a Glaive Beam that was a few seconds from firing. Especially when you don't have Shields. But the game is an exercise in critical Scrap management, with so many things needing extra levels. But putting 50 Scrap on level 5 Weapons in a Stealth B early on would likely save more than that in avoided repairs.

I want to try out all the ships. (Still need unlocks for Mantis, Rock, and Crystal ships, as well as game on a lot of the others.) I like the Stealth ships, despite the frustration of playing the B layout. I don't think any are gimmicks, but some don't have the best starting loadout, especially for the grimmer early battles on Normal and Hard.


Twinge wrote:Every ship in the game can be won with consistently on Hard difficulty with good enough play. I'll also note Stealth B specifically was improved in a lot of indirect ways in AE - cheaper Shields, Hacking+Glaive being amazing, no more Zoltan Bombers in early sectors...

... The biggest issue is the game-internal-bug where all defensive drones ignore targets if they're too far left or right of the main ship -- this means Anti-Drone Drones straight-up miss 20% of the time, which can be rather unfun on the Stealth C (last run I did landed 4 of 9 shots).

In the Balance Mod I currently give Engi B Level 3 Piloting (just makes thematic sense, though it doesn't do a ton) and the Heavy Ion is buffed slightly; for Stealth C the Anti-Drone Drone resets a bit sooner, so at least when it misses it's not out forever, and the Shield+ Drone requires only 1 power; and the Rock A starts with Explosive Replicator (and half the missiles).


I'm getting better but I'm just approaching the level I need for Normal runs.

Didn't realise there were such serious bugs still current. Any idea when we'll see them fixed? And do you think we'll see any official changes to the ship's starting loadout, or will that just be seen in mods?
Jacke
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Re: [Suggestion] Fixing the Broken and Bad Ships

Postby Jacke » Mon Sep 08, 2014 7:07 am

stylesrj wrote:Play Stealth B on Easy until you hit Sector 8, then win/lose and try the Stealth C. I like how it has 3 drone slots but startup is brutal

My Easy run with the Stealth B was educational to say the least. Got to Sector 8 with a good loadout but I still need to work on Scrap efficiency, among other things.

Took down the Flagship with the Glaive Beam as its last shots blew up my final point of Hull, as detailed here: http://www.ftlgame.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=14672&p=84176#p84176

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