Gunships - Page 2

Gunships

A dynamic game undergoing constant development and refinement, that attempts to balance playability with fresh and innovative features.

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Edible
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Re: Gunships

Post by Edible » 13 Aug 2010, 05:08

Carpenter wrote: Do you know what you just said? When you stop using flashes and move to a slower unit, you automatically state that flash is a useless unit in CA. :)
[\quote]

I said they are useless in a specific circumstance (IE vs gunship swarm on the defense), they are perfectly useful in many situations, believe it or not, spamming raiders is not the counter to everything.

Decent group here means 10 - 15 jethros, and imagine if your entire team started to spam aa bots nonstop, it would be total disaster on land.
Your whole team doesnt, just one player has to on the front, and whats more that investment in AA protects you from almost all air till lategame. The trick is to have some warning they are coming by scouting, any unit prepared in a group at the back coming suddenly will overwhelm relevant defences.

IF you are gonna AOE up all the AA, which isnt a bad idea tbh, be sure to buff banshees to the point where a small group can do something decent.
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Google_Frog
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Re: Gunships

Post by Google_Frog » 13 Aug 2010, 09:19

I've done some testing so let me spew some numbers:
  • 3k Jethro win against 5k Banshee with 1.5k remaining
  • 5k Leveler/Outlaw/Warrior win against 5k Banshee with 3.5k - 4.5k remaining
  • 2.5k Leveler/Outlaw/Warrior lose to 5k Banshee removing Half of the Banshee HP pool (many damaged ones).
  • 1.68k Packo win against 5k Banshee with 560 Packo remaining
  • 1.32k Stardust lose against 5k Banshee removing Half of the Banshee HP pool (many damaged ones).
  • The Tank and Walker AA seems to do poorly when at half cost vs Banshees.
  • Venom and Faraday have large aoe EMP which will dramatically increase the effectiveness of any other AA.
By no means do those numbers say everything, Banshees are faster than these units so have a distinct raiding advantage. Though looking at the Packo vs Banshee stats you can afford 3.5 Packo bunches before the Banshees cost less.

My current thoughts are try out some counters and get replays if you think it is really a problem. All the attempts to counter Banshee I have seen so far have not really treated Banshee as a threat. In a game about a week ago the AA in a battle against Banshee never exceeded 1/4 cost of Banshee.

I like gunships which are still viable with good manoeuvring when AA is around. Earlier gunship balance made them completely worthless as soon as AA was built.

Also heavy mobile AA may need buffing, it is mainly aimed at anti-bomber/fighter but it should do a little better against gunships. Also at some stage Licho screwed up fighters to the point that one of them is useless, some untested rebalance then occured.

I agree that the lack of combat units in the gunship factory is a problem. There isn't the models to flesh out that factory. See 1faction for a gunship factory with many units and propper roles.
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maackey
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Re: Gunships

Post by maackey » 13 Aug 2010, 19:50

I agree that the lack of combat units in the gunship factory is a problem. There isn't the models to flesh out that factory. See 1faction for a gunship factory with many units and propper roles.
CAI doesn't work with 1fac :cry: But yeah the unit selection is much better.
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Yogzototh
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Re: Gunships

Post by Yogzototh » 14 Aug 2010, 10:34

Okay i've run some tests with Fighters vs gunships. Basically, to be able to counter banshees, you need to invest almost the same cost in fighters.
20 banshees beat 10 vamps (5k vs 3k), but lose to 12 vamps (3.6k).

So id agree with baracus' suggestion to decrease their fire arc, maybe not to 30 but to 90, it would still help fighters alot.
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Baracus
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Re: Gunships

Post by Baracus » 14 Aug 2010, 12:12

Fighters might be to fast to counter gunships
they cant get/stay on a tail long enough, like they should against bombers. It would be nice if fighters could Tail certain units.

Decreasing fire arc drasticly should fix the issue with air-supremecy gunships.

it is not so much that AA vs Gunships is unbalanced, it is the fact that you need so much AA since there are so many gunships, shouldnt their buildtime be raised, or their Energy cost. I know CA has a philosophy of having 1metal-1energy balanced, but isnt Air better off being more costly in energy + buildtime. Like Godde said earlier in this thread.

Micro'd gunships outrange levelers warriors and bandits, so you can kill as many as you like. Although AOE AA seems to be the only thing good against them
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luckywaldo7
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Re: Gunships

Post by luckywaldo7 » 14 Aug 2010, 13:56

I think the energy/bp cost raise takes the gunships in the wrong direction because that only really delays the time you spam them, when they are already a wait-until-spam-collected unit. You want them to be usefully balanced at all stages in the game. So they can be useful but defeat-able in small groups early and useful but defeat-able in large groups late.
Last edited by luckywaldo7 on 14 Aug 2010, 14:36, edited 1 time in total.
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Saktoth
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Re: Gunships

Post by Saktoth » 14 Aug 2010, 14:31

E and BT cost
Forget it. Godde is spot on that it puts a 'barrier to entry' as it were for units, but that only prevents rushing. Rushing gunships isnt a problem- in fact, thats all they can do early game and they are actually pretty weak as a starting factory.

E and BT are a one time upfront lump cost, and after the investment, the more gunships you make the more efficient that initial investment becomes. This only encourages late game massing, precisely the problem we have.

Gunship arc and countering fighters
Gunships used to have a lower firing arc, and they were almost totally useless. Air just made them entirely redundant, they were a glass cannon you used once in that tiny gap between when they are useful mid game and before the enemy has planes. When we increased their firing arc, this made them able to fight back vs fighters, meaning they were not just straight up hard countered by another factory. You are right in identifying that as the change that has put gunships in vogue now, but going back to a smaller arc is just going to bring back the old problem.

Google is right about the dedicated fighter. IMO we should give it the HP buff it has in 1faction. We dont want multirole fighters to trounce gunships, but a dedicated fighter should beat a multirole gunship more easily than it currently does.

Massing effects and AoE
Yog has got it spot on, its lancasters square law, combined with mobility and versatility. Once these guys mass up and get rolling, they can be a bit hard to stop. The solution has been correctly identified: AoE.

So why dont we have more AoE AA?

One problem with AoE is planes. Planes always lump up, often into tight balls, and it can be very hard to get them to not do this. Having an AA weapon take out a whole wing of fighters or an entire bomber wave is frustrating if there is nothing you can really do to control how tightly your planes clump. We should probably add air collisions back in, though this still doesnt help all that much.

You also dont want to be overzealous with the AoE AA. Gunships -need- to stack up in late game, just like any other unit, since you're working with larger resource numbers. If you can only ever use a small force of them, they will get eaten up by the massive swarms of land units anyway (lancasters square law working against them). It would also not be fair for AA to get AoE without also reducing their DPS, which would make them worse vs single targets (say, bombers). So AoE AA needs to be dedicated to the role of softening up large forces, as a conscious reaction to enemies swarming air units, rather than as something you get for free.

Where to put it all is a good question. The answer is easy in 1faction because we have more than enough units and models for this though (Say, bring back AoE flak).

We do have a last-resort AA weapon for when you just need to say 'fuck you' to an air player though, an AoE AA weapon which will tear through any air force, and that is the mercury, which as stated is very good against gunships. Its serious flaw is that gunships also counter it easily, by spamming blastwings and bladewings. Without that fundamental flaw id say there would be much less of a problem.

Land integration
Ultimately though, gunships are hit by land, so having a dedicated 'anti-gunship' AA is kind of missing the point. It could be very misguided to have a specifically tailored 'anti-gunship' AA (the packo is bad enough!) when ground units hit them too. There are plenty of land units that do quite well vs gunships and even have AoE (including most riots and many raiders). Even most defenses do fairly well against them. You shouldnt actually have to field that much AA vs gunships, if you ensure that you choose a land force capable of hitting them (NOT most assaults). If you mix a few flaks into a good army of banishers and levelers, you shouldnt have much of a problem with gunships and still be able to press with your ground forces.
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luckywaldo7
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Re: Gunships

Post by luckywaldo7 » 14 Aug 2010, 15:37

Tbh I preferred the older air balance, when defenders are more aa-y, packo was shorter range and more specifically anti-gunship, and both sides had a long range precision and flak.

I suppose air is being somewhat redone anyway for 1fac, I would be interested in hearing your plans for that.
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Saktoth
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Re: Gunships

Post by Saktoth » 14 Aug 2010, 17:37

Gunships get a raider (banshee), with less range, though still the capacity to hit air this is mostly good vs other gunships, since the range limits its effectiveness vs planes. There is also a skirmisher/AA gunships, the rapier, with a long reload time and the capacity to hit enemy planes. Currently, the raider beats the skirmisher (as you'd expect) so while you make banshees for vs gunship, you make rapier for vs planes. Dunno if it will stay this way (might give the banshee a weapon thats worse vs other gunships, say, if we want rapier to be more AA focused). The land-only gunship remains the blackdawn, and there are no plans for a dedicated AA gunship.

As for AA, Google and i do not like that the packo (which is invulnerable to land attacks and better vs gunships than planes) is your major source of dedicated AA. We'd prefer something that you can hit from the ground, and something thats more suited to shooting down planes. This is so you can clear out the AA in a land assault or artillery barage to stage a bombing run. This might be a major upset to air balance though, depending how its done.

I'd also like a morphable static style AA unit (like the jammers, shields etc), so every factory has access to a basic mobile AA unit, and we dont necessarily need one per factory (especially when they get very samish).

I'm unsure whether we should make the Slasher a good AA unit (by reducing air HP and AA damage so flex AA is better, say, though then what about defender?) or just add a dedicated AA vehicle (or just the morphable static, as above, and leave it there). There is a real question as to whether the Slasher isnt already so good at land that it doesnt really need to be good vs planes too. Though if it were good vs planes, we wouldnt need to worry so much about it being UP vs land and could nerf it a little (esp since it still outranges LLT's, afterall). If we go for the reducing air HP and AA damage approach, we could go even more drastic and make most mobile into flex-AA, more OTA/XTA style (Probably still with dedicated static AA though). Thats just musings and speculations though.
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JohannesH
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Re: Gunships

Post by JohannesH » 16 Aug 2010, 13:55

Saktoth wrote:E and BT cost
Forget it. Godde is spot on that it puts a 'barrier to entry' as it were for units, but that only prevents rushing. Rushing gunships isnt a problem- in fact, thats all they can do early game and they are actually pretty weak as a starting factory.

E and BT are a one time upfront lump cost, and after the investment, the more gunships you make the more efficient that initial investment becomes. This only encourages late game massing, precisely the problem we have.
It does more than that. It makes the switch to them longer, giving more time to scout and prepare for it. It also makes it better to switch from making them into something else, since you not only invested in gunships but also economy in the process. Sure you can keep making more and more of them, but when the enemy is getting more equipped to fight them it makes sense to expand -> switch toward something more m intensive.

But I guess you don't want to make CA more economically diverse :/
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keijj0
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Re: Gunships

Post by keijj0 » 16 Aug 2010, 22:32

okies, lemme say a few things. atm gunships are op, and the bigger the map is moar op they become. one main thing is SPEED! they are too fast atm and have too much dps. so if u have only 1 gunship type, ill suggest it like this. since aa cant have so much aoe lets make banshees lot slower and a little less dps, but increase hp like 30%. so its not so easy to raid mexes and stuff.

or if banshee/rapier are raider gunships. increase dps like 20% but reduce hp by 50%, speed stays the same
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Pxtl
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Re: Gunships

Post by Pxtl » 16 Aug 2010, 23:14

But I guess you don't want to make CA more economically tedious:/
ftfy.
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JohannesH
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Re: Gunships

Post by JohannesH » 17 Aug 2010, 02:07

You still have to queue up econ buildings in CA like in anywhere... But it's the thinking and planning ahead part that's tedious?
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Pxtl
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Re: Gunships

Post by Pxtl » 17 Aug 2010, 03:12

Johannes, CA's buildpower/expendature equivalence means that you know exactly how much you spend with every con unit. A conbot builds at 6 M & E /s. A lab builds at 6 M&E/s. A contank builds at 9.

No matter what they're building, they spend the same amount per second. That means you can manage your economy based on how much buildpower you have working - 2 moderately-overdriven 2-M mexes and 3 solars can power one con, no matter what work he's doing. That kind of predictability makes the economy possible to fully grasp.

edit: you could do the reverse. Rather than costing E to _build_, they could cost extra E to _use_. Turn off the always-flying Gunship behavior.

Hell, if you want to be really crazy with 1fac, make a second Gunship lab. One for always-flying antigravs, and one Gunships. Gunships land when idle, because they drain E when flying. Or have a fuel limit. Or something.
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Saktoth
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Re: Gunships

Post by Saktoth » 18 Aug 2010, 13:39

Firstly, since nobody is playing due to broken spring ATM, i'd like to get peoples ideas of what strategies are actually being used with gunships that are problematic- especially from the people who used them ('he beat me with...' is unconvincing if you've never done it yourself). From the games ive seen, it seems like the problem is huge lategame banshee hordes (lancasters square law, etc, as i said) but people have also been complaining about chesey com-reclaim strategies and such (which need less expansion and territory contest because of com metal). If thats the problem, perhaps the issue is with com reclaim, which is easy enough to handicap if problematic (And 1faction, with its 50% reclaim returns for units as well as corpses, nerfs it regardless).

We'll have enough gunships in 1faction that we can have a balanced, diverse factory with a number of roles.

The only buff Rapier and Banshee have received in the last 6000 or so revisions is to their targeting, which only helps vs fighters, really.

So what changed that has caused them to come into absolute vogue? Some unit that counters it being nerfed? Other than fighters, nope. If the game hasnt changed, im still not entirely convinced that it isnt the players doing something wrong. There is the possibility that the unit is just OP and its gone unnoticed until now, but there is also the possibility that it is simply popular and people need to make more packos and fighters.

One problem is how much the factory depends on the banshee/rapier being good. Blackdawn/Brawler are good, but only situationally. In 1fac it will be better, because we wont have the banshee/rapier filling so many roles. Its important to keep the factory viable though, and ensure it has its niche.

We dont want to go back to gunships only being useful as a single surprise attack before the enemy has any AA. So we have to balance them into the game, rather than just nerfing them blindly into obsolescence. Though, if long term we are switching to 1fac, i suppose we could just nerf them a bit if we cant find some other elegant solution.
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Pxtl
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Re: Gunships

Post by Pxtl » 18 Aug 2010, 15:32

I don't know what happened, I just know that people who used to build swarms of multirole fighters are now building swarms of Banshees. I think people just had gotten used to Banshees being overpriced and useless and ignored them until recently.

I totally agree - gunships have to be more than "OP until you get anti-gunship defense ready, then useless". That kind of excessive paper-rock-scissors balance is just terrible.

Maybe the shorter firing range on the Banshees will also let more antiswarm units have at them?
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Wombat
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Re: Gunships

Post by Wombat » 12 Oct 2010, 04:52

main thing that always annoys me in spring games is that ground units can shoot air units and air, like gunships, othe air units (with better or worse result ofc), in CA its sometimes totally ridiculous. why gunships would even aim fighters/air units ? why leveler should be able to hit air units ?
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bobthedinosaur
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Re: Gunships

Post by bobthedinosaur » 12 Oct 2010, 05:34

keep in mind this is mods you've played, and is not an engine standard.
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Johannes
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Re: Gunships

Post by Johannes » 12 Oct 2010, 05:44

Wombat wrote:main thing that always annoys me in spring games is that ground units can shoot air units and air, like gunships, othe air units (with better or worse result ofc), in CA its sometimes totally ridiculous. why gunships would even aim fighters/air units ? why leveler should be able to hit air units ?
why not

you mean real levelers dont shoot air?
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Wombat
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Re: Gunships

Post by Wombat » 12 Oct 2010, 05:53

you mean real tanks shoot bombers or fighters ?

and its not coz of mods ive played, its just kinda stupid when lets flash shoots air units, its obviously ground-attack unit, no ?
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