ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

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Treliant
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ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by Treliant » Thu Apr 11, 2013 10:35 pm

I've seen this question come up a few times now in seperate threads and figured I would start a new dedicated thread related to it. I've been playing the game since release and this is the only branch of technologies that I have been unable to determine the effects or effectiveness. The goal here is to create a resource for new and existing players to help understand one of the more subtle aspects of the game.

What I do know:
Every ship has a signature rating that is used in combat to determine how easily they are detected once in enemy scanner range (show up as a symbol in sensor view or as a red diamond in regular view). Energy weapons add significantly to this rating whereas ballistic weapons do not. Running at higher speeds increases this rating and running at lower speeds reduces it. When weapons fire they increase your ships signature so when you use hold fire your signature drops again. Thanks to Rossina (http://www.kerberos-productions.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=40&t=22050&start=720) it appears that the electronic warfare command sections for dreads hides ships in the sensor view. Asteroid fields hide your signature from enemies so they can only target you once you enter visual range. That is where my knowledge ends :googly:
I know Mecron has mentioned in other threads that ECM/ECCM effects were abstracted in SOTS ][ to make things simpler but i'm afraid they have proven too subtle for me effectively gauge their role in combats which leads to my questions.

(*Note: I support the anti-spreadsheet gaming stance that SOTS ][ employs and am not looking for hard values in answers so much as a general magnitude. Example- Polysilicate provides minimal protection against MD whereas Adamantium provides almost total protection)

Questions:

1) I've always assumed that once one ship detects an enemy then that enemy is revealed as a target for your whole fleet with no restrictions. Is this true? or does each ship have to pass some sort of detection roll for targets outside visual range (this refers to the range at which ships are rendered and become more than a red Diamond)
2) What does the radar jammers tech actually do? I know it is a prerequisite for the electronic warfare section but does the tech itself actually provide any sort of bonus or action to your ships/fleets?
3) The Joker ECM module provides chaff charges when equipped but does it also provide any other bonuses to your ships/fleets?
4) What does the quantum Chaff technology actually do in game other than act as a prerequisite for the eletronic warfare section?
5) I've read before that ECM is supposed to influence missle targeting. I've noticed in my games that enemies can't fire missles until they detect my ships either using signature or visual contact. This allows you to get closer to target sometimes before they can engage or lets you get the intial volley of your weapons off before your opponent does. My question relates to the tracking nature of missles; if my ships are detected via signature only and a round of missles are fired at them and they then drop their signature (through what ever means available) such that the enemy ships can no longer detect them are the missles supposed to have a 100% chance to continue homing in on target? Do missles run their own signature checks to see if they can still register a target periodically during their flight or is it a check before firing and once launched there is always a 100% chance to hit target?
6) The electronic warfare secion appears to hide the signature of vessels similar to an asteroid field but does it have any other effect on combat?
7) How does the hawk eye module help counter ECM effects? Is there a check made by each ship against signature that determines whether a ship in sensor range is detected that this module helps amplify?
8 )What exactly do EW Drones do? Are they just a minature less powerful version of the electronic warfare command section? Do they just help reduce the signature of vessels within a small radius? Do they dampen the detection capabilites of nearby enemy ships?

There are many ECM/ECCM techs in a few different tech trees in this game and i'm really looking forward to understanding how they work and what new strategies and tactics they make available.

Thanks
Treliant

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Resok
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by Resok » Thu Apr 11, 2013 10:43 pm

Well the only data point I have as far as Hawkeye and Joker modules is they provide a ECCM and ECM value according to the ship files. According to DDub's earlier description this could help either counter or provide ECM based on the number of modules attached.

I have not used EW drones yet in MP (or SP) so I can't really speak to their effectiveness. It's been on my list of things to try for a while now though.
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ddub
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by ddub » Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:51 pm

Treliant wrote:Questions:

1) I've always assumed that once one ship detects an enemy then that enemy is revealed as a target for your whole fleet with no restrictions. Is this true? or does each ship have to pass some sort of detection roll for targets outside visual range (this refers to the range at which ships are rendered and become more than a red Diamond)
2) What does the radar jammers tech actually do? I know it is a prerequisite for the electronic warfare section but does the tech itself actually provide any sort of bonus or action to your ships/fleets?
3) The Joker ECM module provides chaff charges when equipped but does it also provide any other bonuses to your ships/fleets?
4) What does the quantum Chaff technology actually do in game other than act as a prerequisite for the eletronic warfare section?
5) I've read before that ECM is supposed to influence missle targeting. I've noticed in my games that enemies can't fire missles until they detect my ships either using signature or visual contact. This allows you to get closer to target sometimes before they can engage or lets you get the intial volley of your weapons off before your opponent does. My question relates to the tracking nature of missles; if my ships are detected via signature only and a round of missles are fired at them and they then drop their signature (through what ever means available) such that the enemy ships can no longer detect them are the missles supposed to have a 100% chance to continue homing in on target? Do missles run their own signature checks to see if they can still register a target periodically during their flight or is it a check before firing and once launched there is always a 100% chance to hit target?
6) The electronic warfare secion appears to hide the signature of vessels similar to an asteroid field but does it have any other effect on combat?
7) How does the hawk eye module help counter ECM effects? Is there a check made by each ship against signature that determines whether a ship in sensor range is detected that this module helps amplify?
8 )What exactly do EW Drones do? Are they just a minature less powerful version of the electronic warfare command section? Do they just help reduce the signature of vessels within a small radius? Do they dampen the detection capabilites of nearby enemy ships?


1) Once one ship spots it, that target is available for all ships in the fleet (they share data like a naval war fleet on a microphone).
2) It may unlock the Electronic Warfare ship sections (EW drones and the EW section for the dreadnought ship class). Jammers negate sensor information (same as asteroid belts). The only way to counter this effect is to get close enough to the target to get it in visible range (you actually see the ship). Sensor are important for tracking weapons to lock on to a target.
3) No just the staff charges to destroy incoming missiles.
5) I have stated in the one post that ECM will help reduce your chances of being spotted in the sensors. Once the missile is locked on, it sticks to its target regardless of what happened on the sensor. If a target is destroyed, some missiles will redirect to any nearby targets.
6) Yes, as I have stated prior. That effect is the "jamming" effect (as in jamming the sensor information).
7) It would increase the ECCM of the ship, which counters the ECM directly.
8) They are miniature versions of the EW command section. You can set them to target friendly ships and cloak their signature (using ctrl+fire on an enemy, dont worry they wont fire on friendlies and we are working on making that more clear). ANYTHING within the radius will have their signature cloaked.

Couple things to note are that if your ship moves or fires its weapons, its signature increases (different weapons are louder than others). If it is stopped and you hold fire, its signature will drop substantially (though once it is detected you would have to escape all of the enemy's sensors for them to lose your signature).

Hope this helps clarify how the ECM, ECCM, signature, and sensor work.

Thanks,

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Nall White
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by Nall White » Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:51 pm

Hopefully they will update the manual with this info. But, I would also like to see some kind of a generic signature rating (maybe from 0-10. 0 being you need deep scan sensors to see it, aka cloaked ship.) for each ship. I believe this has been suggested. And, more quantitative descriptions. Adaptive Thermals states that it give a 25% reduction to signature. But, from what base? This is one of the key features that separates this from other games and should be made to shine. 8)

But, I think there is a bug. I've seen missiles keeps tracking ships after re-cloaking. It has been a while and not sure if I reported it. I usually cloak or shield assault shuttle carriers. And, have to de-cloak to launch them. After cloaking I would assume the missiles would try to find a new target or explode. I'll go for cloaking in my current game and test. I also, just remembered that the AI would some how know where I was and would follow me around. Again, haven't used cloaking in a while.

edit: Ninjaed by ddub.
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ddub
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by ddub » Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:55 pm

Nall White wrote:Hopefully they will update the manual with this info. But, I would also like to see some kind of a generic signature rating (maybe from 0-10. 0 being you need deep scan sensors to see it, aka cloaked ship.) for each ship. I believe this has been suggested. And, more quantitative descriptions. Adaptive Thermals states that it give a 25% reduction to signature. But, from what base? This is one of the key features that separates this from other games and should be made to shine. 8)

But, I think there is a bug. I've seen missiles keeps tracking ships after re-cloaking. It has been a while and not sure if I reported it. I usually cloak or shield assault shuttle carriers. And, have to de-cloak to launch them. After cloaking I would assume the missiles would try to find a new target or explode. I'll go for cloaking in my current game and test. I also, just remembered that the AI would some how know where I was and would follow me around. Again, haven't used cloaking in a while.

edit: Ninjaed by ddub.

Once the missiles lock on to a target, they stick to the target unless it gets destroyed.
As for the AI finding your cloaked ships, keep moving around with them, they are guessing where your ship is based on its previous locations, after a short duration, they will be unable to find your ship unless you de cloak. If you are moving around and start obtaining control zones, then the AI may go and investigate (but still wont find anything yet).

Thanks,

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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by Treliant » Fri Apr 12, 2013 1:21 am

Thank you for the reply ddub it was extremely informative. I'll be sure to make better use of ECM/ECCM effects in my future games.
:toast:

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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by DarkEzeal » Fri Apr 12, 2013 9:21 am

Loving the sound of the ECM and ECCM. Always been my thing in games. The only problem (in my eyes :p) is the control zones. I get why their there, but it kinda counters sneaking. Cloaking not so much, but their not completely taken by surprise. I've been trying to think of ways around it while still sneaking, but if they know which control zone your in they find you fast and you really only get the opening volley. Got to admit though if your enemy knows your coming in with a big fleet, but is not sure which cloaks, you can kinda of mess with him by taking control zones. Send the cloaked ships with a decoy looking fleet and pray they go the other direction lol.

Don't suppose you guys are going to, or at least thinking about, changing control zones even a tiny little bit? :angel:
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Post by marshb » Fri Apr 12, 2013 1:09 pm

DarkEzeal wrote:Loving the sound of the ECM and ECCM. Always been my thing in games. The only problem (in my eyes :p) is the control zones. I get why their there, but it kinda counters sneaking. Cloaking not so much, but their not completely taken by surprise. I've been trying to think of ways around it while still sneaking, but if they know which control zone your in they find you fast and you really only get the opening volley. Got to admit though if your enemy knows your coming in with a big fleet, but is not sure which cloaks, you can kinda of mess with him by taking control zones. Send the cloaked ships with a decoy looking fleet and pray they go the other direction lol.

Don't suppose you guys are going to, or at least thinking about, changing control zones even a tiny little bit? :angel:

If you take a territory or two then sneak back to a previously taken territory thiers less chance of them finding you, they'll be too busy investigating the lastest disturbance. This will allow you to feint and make an end run against a lesser defended target. Probe and feint, probe and feint. It's like submarine warfare. :twisted:
As a caveat I believe the devs didn't want something in the game that was too too effective. :cool:
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DarkEzeal
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by DarkEzeal » Sat Apr 13, 2013 7:52 am

If you take a territory or two then sneak back to a previously taken territory thiers less chance of them finding you, they'll be too busy investigating the lastest disturbance. This will allow you to feint and make an end run against a lesser defended target. Probe and feint, probe and feint. It's like submarine warfare. :twisted:


True, but I find this more useful for gaining territory for the next combat phase. Prolly wont work in MP as i think i read somewhere the pre-fight Battle Manager isn't working or something like that. Still a good something I never thought about.

If you take a territory or two then sneak back to a previously taken territory thiers chance of them finding you, they'll be too busy investigating the lastest disturbance. This will allow you to feint and make an end run against a lesser defended target. Probe and feint, probe and feint. It's like submarine warfare. :twisted:


A way I thought about it was make it to where planet and station sensors were far more powerful. If a ships signature radius was strong enough and the ship was close enough it would show up on the scanners as an anomaly in that sector. Then show the Control Zone changes after the combat was over. Again, just me personally. Oh hey, the control zone changes have a latency to the one who lost it lol.
In game name is Zeak.
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CyanStorm
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by CyanStorm » Sat Apr 13, 2013 11:21 pm

DarkEzeal wrote:
Prolly wont work in MP as i think i read somewhere the pre-fight Battle Manager isn't working or something like that.


It's disabled. I don't know whether that's temporary because of some bug or if it's working as intended.
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Resok
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by Resok » Sun Apr 14, 2013 12:54 am

CyanStorm wrote:It's disabled. I don't know whether that's temporary because of some bug or if it's working as intended.


Temporary AFAIK due to a bug. The bug essentially was changes for fleet positions wouldn't get synced over to the Host-side, which would result in horrible combat de-syncs.
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by CyanStorm » Sun Apr 14, 2013 1:48 pm

Resok wrote:
CyanStorm wrote:It's disabled. I don't know whether that's temporary because of some bug or if it's working as intended.


Temporary AFAIK due to a bug. The bug essentially was changes for fleet positions wouldn't get synced over to the Host-side, which would result in horrible combat de-syncs.


Good to know, thanks.
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by DarkEzeal » Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:01 am

Would be cool if the ECM techs would also reduce the accuracy of weapon, even missiles and other trackers. Would make ECCM far more important lol
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Mecron
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by Mecron » Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:02 am

the eye finger poke missile handles that.

Treliant
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Re: ECM/ECCM- how does it function in game?

Post by Treliant » Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:19 am

I think ECM/ECCM effectiveness can also be tweaked by changing the "visual" detection range of ships. If you have to be closer to a target before many of your weapons become effective then sensor detection becomes alot more important. I'm not totally sure what the visual detection range of ships is right now (6000-7000 range somewhere in there?) and I also have no idea how easy this value is to tweak.
I've also noticed that Drones and battle riders appear to provide just as much sensor range and Visual range as your cruisers/Dreadnoughts/leviathans which makes stealth options alot less effective. All you have to do is send out your drones and unless your opponent is miles away from combat you get to easily target all his ships with your long range weaponry. If you remove this element then scout BR's become crucial and you could even add a new Scout drone variant that could paint areas around enemy ships for your long range missle ships.

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