Few questions about demo version

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Sofaspud
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Few questions about demo version

Post by Sofaspud » Fri Feb 15, 2008 3:16 am

I've been playing the demo for a while, and will be buying as soon as the Gold or Collectors or whatever it's called edition releases (the one with both in it); until then I'm enjoying myself.

But.

I've got a few questions, one or two of which are REALLY really causing me grief. In no particular order:

1) Is Plague the only way to win in the demo version? I mean, I've stacked as many cruisers as I can pump out (given that you can apparently only get 3 onto the tac map at any given time, max, grr) on the enemy homeworld and watched them get swatted down one by one. Point defense helps, sure -- I've had 2 cruisers escorted by nothing but PD destroyers last several rounds -- but the point is they don't seem to do enough damage, no matter what I equip them with, to make an appreciable dent on the population. Next round they've rebuilt and I might as well have stayed home. BUT, as soon as I load up 3-4 plague destroyers, it's pretty much insta-win. I want something different! (For grins, I once force-fired at one of my own cruisers engine section while it was on a trajectory towards the planet. Whether I shot the engine off or they did, I don't know, but the crash, while impressive-looking, didn't do much.)

2) Torpedoes. Are they this suck in the full version, too? I've had the randomizer hand me photonic and disruptor (-tion?), and neither seems to be able to hit the broad side of the Lesser Magellanic Cloud. WITH Predictive Gunnery and Fire Control researched, I might add, and a FC section on the destroyer itself. What gives?

3) Is there any way to change the plane my craft are 'flying' on in tactical mode? What's happening, almost invariably, is that the Tarka fly 'under' my Human ships, which happens to be a Big Happy Blind Spot as far as I can tell, because Human ships seem to be top-heavy with gun placement. Result: the Tarkanator can pummel me good from below, while I pew-pew a couple lousy shots at him every pass from the 1 or 2 turrets that can get a line on him. Frustrating!

4) Is the random number generator skewed? Three instances come to mind: first, every game I've had I've been hit by meteors at one or more of my colonies. In every game, the same colony has been hit at least twice, and once it got hit 4 times by a meteor swarm. That's just stupid-painful, rather than challenge-painful. Second, I've had systems appear with NO node line connections to them at all -- meaning, I've occupied every other system available, but those few (2 one time, 3 the other) don't have a connection back to the rest of the cluster. And finally, possibly related, I've had two games where there was 1 node line leading from my homeworld, to a system which had 1 nodeline leading from it, to a system with -- you guessed it -- only 1 nodeline leading from IT. After three farkin' jumps it finally branched out, but, yikes. (To add insult to injury, none of them were colonizable, gah)

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Hans Lemurson
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Post by Hans Lemurson » Fri Feb 15, 2008 4:43 am

1. Plague is not the only way. UV Lasers are actually no slouches at planetary cleansing. Assault-shuttles work too, but kill-off infrastructure. Particle beams are good too; neutron beams even better. Spinal mount DEs can be good for this in the demo. Missiles with fusion warheads are also good, but are a bit slower, and do significant environmental damage in addition to infrastructure. Mass-drivers work too. The main problem you seem to be facing is that your ships get chewed up by planetary missiles too badly to allow for a sustained bombardment. Human Point Defense DEs are awesome, with their 5 separate firing banks, a pair of these on the field (and a couple in reserve) can provide your fleet with the protection it needs. Just remember to keep your ships together. For the Tarka, it is a different issue, since your PD coverage almost universally sucks. There is an answer to your prayers though: The Deflector mission-section has 3 separate small-mounts that provide it with spherical PD coverage. These are much more effective against planetary missiles than the official PD section. However, with demo fleet-sizes, and demo weapon techs, quick kills of worlds can be hard to come by.

2. In later updates, direct-fire torpedoes shoot a bit better, but in general, the targeting algorithms employed do not "lead" the target. Direct-fire torps were never meant for use against anything smaller than CRs, since they need a big target. Fire-control only narrows the cone of accuracy, which is not the fundamental issue with torp DEs; it is that they have to face their target directly to fire (and so sometimes have a hard time getting lined up), and then they don't lead with their shots (so that when they do face, they often miss). Against a large target with minimal lateral-motion, they'll be able to get their hits in. Also, in BoB, photonics fire 5 shots instead of just 3.

3. The ships with the greater maneuverability (usually tarka) will go the position more advantageous to it. If you are getting consistently screwed by your opponents going beneath you, there are a few things you can do:
-Keep your distance: They don't move up or down until you get close.
-Run away and try again. If you run away, you can order your ships back down to the plane: The enemy will also return to the plane, and so you can close distance and try again. (This is not actually very effective).
-Use Fire-Control sections: Aside from improving your accuracy (and making mass-drivers not just viable, but vicious), they also make your vessels perform some tricky maneuvers like barrel-rolls. I have personally witnessed (yes, in the demo) 3 of my DEs flying upside-down after a pass-by with the enemy.
-Use DE Swarms: DEs have better all-around coverage than cruisers do. Of course, Cruisers are frickin' awesome, and you've probably already gotten sick of DE swarms. So in that case...
-Use missiles: Missiles will kill your target no matter where they are. One cruiser-volley of (fusion)missiles is usually a guaranteed kill of a DE (unless they have PD).
-Use mines (same deal).
-Ordering your ships to "Stop" will have them not just drift to a stand-still, but they will also turn to face their target.
-Torpedo and spinal-mount DEs always try to face their target. Spinal-mounts work well with the "keep your distance" stance.
In BoB, you are given the ability to issue a "barrel roll" order to your ships, as well as a "pursue" stance, where they chase their target in a straight line with their noses pointed right at it, even off the plane. With these, and some more advanced weaponry available, you needn't worry too much when the enemy dives beneath you. It's inconvenient and gives them an advantage no matter what, but that's why they did it in the first place. (And because your pilots suck!)

4. The random number generator is not skewed. It's just random. But random in a very arbitrary and unsympathetic way. There is no moderation of good and bad luck, it's all just cold and uncaring straight-up die rolls. On larger maps, this becomes less of an issue, as the probabilities even out. Humans getting "node-line screwed" is not an uncommon complaint. Just think of it as raising the challenge level. In some cases where there is no access whatsoever, you can always slow-boat it across the black at .5c (with fusion engines). But really, it's all just random, and there is naught one can do about it. You can get screwed by or luck out on all the goodies on tech-trees too.

Well...I hope that this will be useful in answering your questions.
-OMNES CORAM LEMURE CEDITE-
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Mecron
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Post by Mecron » Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:49 am

the demo has a REDUCED variety of random events...so really just imagine that OTHER things are happening when the meteor storm arrives :wink:

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Kaorti
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Post by Kaorti » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:21 pm

Also, in the full game almost all the torpedo techs are tracking torpedoes rather than the dumb fire variety. Aim very quickly ceases to be an issue with tracking torpedoes.
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Post by Darloth » Sun Feb 17, 2008 7:34 am

Hans Lemurson wrote:-Ordering your ships to "Stop" will have them not just drift to a stand-still, but they will also turn to face their target.


In the demo, they do this much less. I think the functionality for everything to turn to face their targets is only in the most recent update. Spinal beams and torpedoes, basically anything with a fixed firing arc, always did this, but in the demo and before the latest BoB update you had to tell your ships to turn manually.

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zanzibar196
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Post by zanzibar196 » Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:48 pm

to the OP:

It sounds like you really, REALLY need to buy the full version. Oh, and add Born of Blood. All your complaints are fixed, and even much more once you add BoB. I really have no clue why you would want to continue playing the demo version.
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Hans Lemurson
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Re: Few questions about demo version

Post by Hans Lemurson » Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:27 pm

Sofaspud wrote:I've been playing the demo for a while, and will be buying as soon as the Gold or Collectors or whatever it's called edition releases (the one with both in it); until then I'm enjoying myself.


He soon will be a customer, but wants to make sure he gets the whole deal.
-OMNES CORAM LEMURE CEDITE-
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Post by Mecron » Mon Feb 18, 2008 3:23 am

there will be an updated demo to go along with the CE era of build as well.

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Hans Lemurson
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Post by Hans Lemurson » Mon Feb 18, 2008 8:55 pm

Updated demo for the Gold Edition? I assume then that it would be based on BoB. Which races?
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:idea: Just like the wOmBaT which ever yet continues climbing the Karakorums in vain, so indeed is absurdism a way of life. :idea:
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Mecron
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Post by Mecron » Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:25 am

current plan= human, tark, and liir

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Hans Lemurson
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Post by Hans Lemurson » Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:41 am

Not Zuul?
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Slasher
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Post by Slasher » Mon Feb 25, 2008 1:28 am

No hivers?
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Mecron
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Post by Mecron » Mon Feb 25, 2008 4:48 am

cmon people...think about it...how much sense is there is demoing the races that take a bit more skill and experience to play effectively. Do you really think its a good idea to drop someone completely cold into the Hiver crawl or the Zuul weave?

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silvaril
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Unless of course you are expanding the Tech Scope... ;)

Post by silvaril » Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:12 am

Heya

To be honest, given the relatively low tech level of the Demo, I'm having trouble understanding why the Liir are included... :)

While their drive system is very akin to the Tarka in point there and go fashion, I can only see complaints arising from their Grav-Well induced lethargy.
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Sofaspud
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Post by Sofaspud » Mon Feb 25, 2008 6:04 pm

Are you kidding me? The Liir are what got me interested in SotS in the first place (before I got around to actually, y'know, playing it). The demo made me furious -- FURIOUS, I TELL YOU! :) -- when I found I couldn't even play AGAINST the psychotic space whales, much less as them.

So, good news about the demo, assuming I have to wait until after it comes out before the collectors edition releases.

Speaking of the demo... I dunno about others, but I would REALLY REALLY REALLY prefer a turn-limit rather than "Ha ha, you can't DO THAT!" like it is now. Just my 2 cents.

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