[MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.8

Distribute and discuss mods that are functional. Moderator - Grognak
leycec
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 5:42 am

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby leycec » Tue Apr 02, 2013 10:52 pm

Fantastic imagery and implementation, karmos.

Nonetheless, I do have balance concerns – especially, as prior posters have commented, with the ion and missile drones. Given their relatively high rates of fire (in the case of the 4-power versions), low power consumption (in the case of the 2-power versions), and ability to either disable shields (in the case of ion drones) or bypass shields entirely (in the case of missile drones), it's hard not to feel both to be overpowered. (I can't imagine what these were like prior to the 0.7.6 nerf. Good FTL God.)

The 4-power ion and missile drones are the crux of the problem, though: the rates of fire are simply too high when used against the player. When used by the player, both might very well be well-balanced. When used against the player, however, the onslaught feels disproportionately more powerful than any other weapons wielded by stock enemies. I might be O.K. with even that, were there tangible rewards for defeating such "mini-bosses." But there aren't. You're left with a largely depleted hull and little to show for it beyond the ordinary scrap spoils.

Missile drones are especially problematic in early sectors, where the player is unlikely to have a high enough evasion to reliably dodge missiles. On Easy, this might not be a problem. Easy is, after all, too easy. On Normal (i.e., Insanely Stupidly Impossible), however, I've had numerous playthroughs abruptly curtailed by a chance encounter with a missile drone.

To compound matters, I've yet to see such drones available in shops or from events or enemies. In my playthroughs at least, this implies that enemy ships get to field the arguably most overpowered weapons in the game but I, the player, cannot. I'm largely O.K. with the Rebel Flagship breaking the FTL rules of engagement and fielding ridiculously overpowered weapons and systems. I'm not O.K. with random enemies on the road to the Rebel Flagship doing the same. It feels deeply unfair – to the point that I've recently removed DronesPlus from my mods list. (I should probably just edit out the missile drone and possibly the ion drone from the zipped XML files, but... that smells suspiciously like work.)

Ideally, I'd love to see both either rebalanced or (failing that) reworked from the ground up. It shouldn't be terribly hard to fairly balance the ion drones, for example: decreased rate of fire (for the 4-power version) and increased power consumption (for the 2-power version) should do it. In the case of missile drones, however, I question whether the core idea of a drone always bypassing all shields even can be fairly balanced. :cry:

In any case, thanks for your tremendous efforts in keeping the FTL journey alive.
Todes_Schnitzel
Posts: 65
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2012 10:55 pm

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby Todes_Schnitzel » Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:29 pm

Is it possible that I can make a Ship with drones of this mod?
MY ENGLISH IS TERRIBLYHELL YEAH!
This text is presented by Google translate , my english skill and german. :D
Flypaste
Posts: 41
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2012 4:04 am

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby Flypaste » Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:52 am

Sorry if it has already asked, I didn't look very hard, but:

I made a custom ship that uses the missile drone, but it isn't showing up even though I loaded drones+ first. how can I make it show up in the weapons loadout?

wow, it turns out the guy above me asked the same question. Go figure. I prolly look pretty darn stupid now.
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kartoFlane
Posts: 1470
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:20 pm

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby kartoFlane » Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:12 am

You should be able to just add the the drone to the ship's list of available drones, and then load the DronesPlus mod before yours.
Perhaps it's some stupid, common mistake - maybe you forgot to set the count property on the dronesList tag to the number of items on the list?
Superluminal2 - a ship editor for FTL
Flypaste
Posts: 41
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2012 4:04 am

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby Flypaste » Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:14 pm

Nope, its all done right.
Bonnie Lass
Posts: 31
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2013 6:16 pm

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby Bonnie Lass » Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:37 am

There's a couple XML errors reported by GMM for this mod.

> data/blueprints.append.xml
! <!-- No other dashes should touch. -->

> data/sector_data.append.xml
! <sectorDescription>...</sectorDescrption>

Easily fixed by replacing <!--- with <!-- in the first and fixing line 72 in the second by adding an i.
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Metzelmax
Posts: 363
Joined: Wed Sep 26, 2012 7:59 am
Location: Uz'ran Home Dimension

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby Metzelmax » Fri Apr 26, 2013 8:49 am

Why are Ion drones not available in the store?

ME WANTS ION DRONES!
Here is the Stuff I made:
ImageImageImageImage
And stuff is always better than no stuff, right?
steel915
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:42 pm

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby steel915 » Thu May 02, 2013 4:20 pm

would it be possible for you to make a heavy drone?

Slow rate of fire and more power offset by higher hull damage, breach chance, fire chance etc.
(basically a drone version of the heavy laser)

Enables drone orientated ships to still cause half decent damage to ships if they use ion weapons to bring shields down.

I know its not exactly vital its just nice to have a variety to access. Also are all drones available in the shops/from events or just very rare?
featherwings
Posts: 40
Joined: Tue May 07, 2013 6:27 am

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby featherwings » Fri May 10, 2013 5:44 am

leycec wrote:Fantastic imagery and implementation, karmos.

Nonetheless, I do have balance concerns – especially, as prior posters have commented, with the ion and missile drones. Given their relatively high rates of fire (in the case of the 4-power versions), low power consumption (in the case of the 2-power versions), and ability to either disable shields (in the case of ion drones) or bypass shields entirely (in the case of missile drones), it's hard not to feel both to be overpowered. (I can't imagine what these were like prior to the 0.7.6 nerf. Good FTL God.)

The 4-power ion and missile drones are the crux of the problem, though: the rates of fire are simply too high when used against the player. When used by the player, both might very well be well-balanced. When used against the player, however, the onslaught feels disproportionately more powerful than any other weapons wielded by stock enemies. I might be O.K. with even that, were there tangible rewards for defeating such "mini-bosses." But there aren't. You're left with a largely depleted hull and little to show for it beyond the ordinary scrap spoils.

...


The biggest problem I see is that drones, when the player uses them, have the huge downside in that you don't get to aim them. Missile drones are balanced for the player because it's mostly hull damage that ignores the shield, vs. missile launchers which have a tactical purpose in damaging systems.

Against the AI though, all missiles fire randomly and missile drones become a lot more powerful compared to ship-mounted launchers. Especially since every other drone can be nullified by a few dots in shields and targeting the weapons system; in vanilla, you almost never aim at the drone system first. With missile drones, it becomes priority number 1, which is good because it adds new dynamics but is terrible because the game isn't balanced around that. A missile drone lets a ship be a threat through two of your weapons volleys instead of one, which is a huge impact.

Not even sure if this can be balanced around, besides requiring so much power AI ships have to sacrifice a lot of their weapons to do it. Can you make missile drones not appear in early sectors?

Ideally, I'd like to see missile drones behave like hull repair drones - fire off a handful of shots and then vanish when they're out of ammo. I don't think that's possible though, which is all of the sad.

Ion drones are REALLY strong for their power level too, but it's not quite the same problem. I think that's more of a numbers tweak than a fundamental difference.

Anyway, thanks for a great mod - even if I've been playing with it off recently. The sprites alone are completely fantastic and fit the rest of the style perfectly!

EDIT: quick feedback: the beam drone II still says it pierces a layer of shields, if it's been patched you should fix that.
TheSwiftTiger
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 9:21 am

Re: [MOD] DronesPlus 0.7.7

Postby TheSwiftTiger » Sun May 26, 2013 6:17 pm

Hey. I've used one of your drones for one of my mods. I've modified it a bit and put it in. Is it ok?

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