Modding Picture of the day...

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Rossinna-Sama
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Thu Oct 24, 2019 11:44 pm

Talverin wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 9:56 pm
So Interdiction basically puts you head-to-head with the arriving enemy?

Trying to protect freighters when pirates attack is really hit-or-miss. There're no indicators where they will arrive or where the freighters are. I wasn't sure if a fleet set to Interdiction would automatically set up in front of the pirates or not.
Will check today if I find the spare time, but it seems that only fleets can trigger an interdiction, not trade ships or anything else.
According to the code, imagine a circle surrounding the system. The interdiction fleet will trigger a combat encounter with any fleet which goes in or out of that circle but it doesn't explicitly say it'll trigger for trade ships or things which are not in a fleet.

It could work otherwise in theory, but that's what the code reckons in any case. It doesn't seem to have anything to do with trade.

Admittedly its one of those things I rarely, if ever use. So don't know if its got edge-cases like not working against Solforce and so on.
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Talverin » Fri Oct 25, 2019 11:27 am

Apologies if I was mis-stating, I meant whether or not it triggered on pirates attacking your trade ships, not on the trade ships themselves. That's why I was wondering.

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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:12 pm

So, after some more digging around in the .dll file, I found where the game is hiding the CP costs of the ships and... it doesn't crash upon editing.

No idea if I'll wind up changing them for PH, but it would clean things up a bit if a CR cost 1 CP, a DN 2 and so on, or simply having all ships cost 1. Undecided as its a big change and it'd never be something that goes into SoS.

My hunt for where Cloaking and certain Psi powers are hiding continues, sadly. There has to be something I can do in order to stop large cloaked fleets from reducing FPS rates to single digits while the UI is on somehow.

Diplomacy, it looks promising so far though as usual, it will take time to see what works and what is broken since it is scattered across quite a lot of entries within that dll.

Not sure if it is possible, but I'd also like to enforce that war can not be declared on the same turn you attack\are attacked but has to wait for the next turn, so surprise attack has a real purpose apart from being a great way to tank your relations with the other factions.

No pictures right now, what little time I've had has been spent digging around and experimenting as usual.
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Wed Nov 06, 2019 2:44 pm

So my test run to see if I've 'fixed' AI agression and willingness to actually invade with more than a single fleet seems to have worked. I... actually lost my homeworld. That has never happened before against the AI.

Guess I need to get to work on defensive platforms for PH. :googly:

Anywho, stability with the new changes destined for SoS seems fine. No crashes at all. So hoping for a release tomorrow for SoS's patch, depends on what my day looks like.

Other changes for PH:

Altered the graphics for all shields. All non-meson and non-grav shields now use the same effect.
Rebalanced projectors, they needed tweaking as they proved too weak to be able to compete against DN sized targets, which is kinda their point.
Doubled Cannon-line projectile speeds, slightly decreased ROF.
Brawling Pulsed Phasers nerfed quite heavily; those things were insane.
Planetary Defenses improved. Still a work in progress though.
Decreased Fusion and Antimatter Torpedo planetary damage by a lot. 4 shotting a size 10 homeworld is not acceptable!
-----------------------------

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It begins - 20 turns straight of constant attacks on my homeworld from the AI.

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If there is one thing PH is good at, it is setting everything on fire.

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Wonder if its worth tweaking glass textures again for Solforce.

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The new look for all shields.

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Meson Shields - WIP since PH doesn't actually use them at present.

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And the Grav shield... also a WIP since that's now how its supposed to look.

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No idea if the changes to the shields is positive or negative, but it does make taking screenshots easier.

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The green AI was hampered early on as they were being assaulted from both me and the red AI - you'll see what the red AI was up to shortly.

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Which was laying siege to my home system constantly.

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Hi! I heard the AI wasn't invading enough. That really doesn't seem to be an issue now. :?

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I held them off for quite a while and then this fleet showed up. Reflex-era weaponry since the AI is on the Very Hard difficulty? Yep.

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However since I was already picking on the green AI (who's now dead), wasn't quite expecting 6+ DN fleets to invade all within three turns of one another.

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The war goes on though; seems PH is finally meeting my expectations in regards to both what SOTS2 and the AI can do.

I must say a major thank-you to Willdeih for SOS - PH's recent improvements would not have been possible without him.
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Talverin » Thu Nov 07, 2019 12:15 pm

That is positively horrifying. How DID you last that long against so many and such large of fleets!? That's insane.

Sounds like it's all come together pretty well though! I look forward to using all those defensive fleets and fortifications I normally build as planet decorations...

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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Slashman » Thu Nov 07, 2019 4:04 pm

Rossinna-Sama wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:12 pm
So, after some more digging around in the .dll file, I found where the game is hiding the CP costs of the ships and... it doesn't crash upon editing.

No idea if I'll wind up changing them for PH, but it would clean things up a bit if a CR cost 1 CP, a DN 2 and so on, or simply having all ships cost 1. Undecided as its a big change and it'd never be something that goes into SoS.

Hey Rossina. Great work as usual. I just wanted to let you know that Mecron previously said that there was a reason why cruisers didn't Cost 1 CP etc.

I don't remember exactly but I was sure it has something to do with changes down the line causing problems. Anyway...you might want to run that by him before you make those changes. If he can remember what he said. You know he's getting on in years... :angel:
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Mecron » Thu Nov 07, 2019 7:58 pm

Without the planned expansions it may be less of a problem.

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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:03 am

Power was knocked out for all of yesterday, so update release has been delayed by, well, a day.

Changing the CP cost of CRs and so on, I've come to the conclusion that there isn't any point. Risk of code breaking or causing unintended consequences is too great for no real gain.

Also... I suppose you couldn't lay some hints as to what those planned expansions would have been? :?:
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Slashman » Sun Nov 10, 2019 1:04 pm

Rossinna-Sama wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:03 am
Power was knocked out for all of yesterday, so update release has been delayed by, well, a day.
Hey Rossina,

Are you OK? Is your power still out? (Well not that you'd be able to answer me if it was)
If you want a different perspective, stand on your head.

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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Tue Nov 12, 2019 11:46 am

Slashman wrote:
Sun Nov 10, 2019 1:04 pm
Rossinna-Sama wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:03 am
Power was knocked out for all of yesterday, so update release has been delayed by, well, a day.
Hey Rossina,

Are you OK? Is your power still out? (Well not that you'd be able to answer me if it was)
Power is back, yes. However I'm physically ill to the point that focusing on anything for more than a few minutes is impossible due to the pain. As I still have to take out PH's AI economy changes from that file to make it compatible with vanilla, it winds up being more difficult then merely uploading it as is. And that's what's causing the delay, for now.

I could upload the PH version, but I have zero idea how the AI would handle itself.
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Slashman » Tue Nov 12, 2019 12:04 pm

Rossinna-Sama wrote:
Tue Nov 12, 2019 11:46 am
Slashman wrote:
Sun Nov 10, 2019 1:04 pm
Rossinna-Sama wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:03 am
Power was knocked out for all of yesterday, so update release has been delayed by, well, a day.
Hey Rossina,

Are you OK? Is your power still out? (Well not that you'd be able to answer me if it was)
Power is back, yes. However I'm physically ill to the point that focusing on anything for more than a few minutes is impossible due to the pain. As I still have to take out PH's AI economy changes from that file to make it compatible with vanilla, it winds up being more difficult then merely uploading it as is. And that's what's causing the delay, for now.

I could upload the PH version, but I have zero idea how the AI would handle itself.
No dude. Take care of your self and continue when you feel up to it. I thought you just had a power cut...no idea you were that sick.

The update can wait. I hope you feel better soon.
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Wed Nov 13, 2019 10:23 pm

Fought through my pain and got some work done - SoS has been updated, info on that is over in that thread.

PH though got a lot more work done:

Image
"You are playing as the Tarkasian Empire. This means you start in the Fusion Era instead of the Fission era, have additional starting technologies already researched and already possess some fusion-era weapons. However due to the apathy your people feel towards the other races, your research rate is reduced by 35% and you must invest in science stations in order to maintain reasonable research speeds as time goes on."

(I've fixed the description since the screenshot was taken.)
Since trade does not exist, that tech (Heavy Freighters) has been re-purposed into one of PH's 'dummy' techs which explains some things.

Anyway, this was a part of a much larger redo of every factions starting technologies and more importantly, their initial weapon preferences. I got so irritated with Solforce still using blaster (laser) weaponry when they had the entire plasma cannon line unlocked that I tweaked things again and behold; they are actually using their factional preferences!

This also meant a major revamp of what factions got what right at the start and is a part of a longer process which tailors each factions AI towards certain types of weapons without forcing them to always do the same thing.

Examples of a few changes in that regard:
Fixed a few issues with blasters (lasers) having inflated scores due to SoS's bonus points for having no weapon deviation. They now have a little deviation which fixed almost everything instantly.
Morrigi now start with blaster line weaponry and are the only faction which starts with Accommodate and even starts with proliferate - it fits their multi-racial lore. They've lost some of their initial missile techs though since blaster weaponry has two weapon lines - short range brawling (thermal, X-ray) and long range standoff (chemical, UV).
Loa now start with a wider range of energy weapons, now starts with fusion torpedoes, has both cast armor (poly) and reflective armor, and has a more balanced tech starting set than before. (Poly armor is not a starting tech in PH. The tech which unlocked Goop modules is.)
Hivers do not start with any energy weapons (barring thermal and chemical blasters which all factions have to avoid crashes.), they do start however with the full T0 ballistic set and a fair number of missile techs. They also start with cast armor researched.
Tarkas, playing on their PH-lore, actually start in the fusion era instead of the fission era. This essentially means they've got access to fusion-era weaponry right from the start which is not possible for any other faction in PH since you must research Reinforced Containment which acts as the fusion-era unlock, so starting weapons don't instantly get outclassed. They also start with the full range of both T0 and T1 ballistic weapons, a number of misc techs scattered around the place, MechaEmpathy and so on. However as the screenshot at the top states, they do suffer for this by having a reduced research rate.

Liir was arguably the hardest hit by today's changes as they lost the ability to even research accommodate and proliferate since in PH's lore, they'd never allow such a thing to transpire. They did get some things though, such as disruptor torpedoes.
Zuul probably got the best of the changes as a good number of ballistic T0 weapons are weapons they start with, they even have grapplers from turn 1. They'll get more attention once its time for me to focus on them again.

Depending on my mood, may get more done today, unsure as of yet. Ballistics above T1 are a mess and I need to have another look at the various missiles PH has added - sometimes I wonder if I really should invest time into making icons, I just know I'd suck at it. :(

---------
EDIT - Yep, I got some more work done.

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I know it isn't their real texture... but I like it.

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Since the Tarkas are still the most WIP faction in PH, they don't have the optimizations the other factions do yet. Such as them only having 400 structure...

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Pirates are a bit strange since there's no trade in PH, but they still serve to be a fairly effective static random menace anyway.

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Ballistics in PH use a tiering system - they are one of the few weapons in which you can tell their tier by looking at the muzzle effect and often the bullets trail. This is a T1 ballistic weapon, as evident by the brownish color. T0 are clouds (the old interceptor muzzle effect).

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Focused Bursters setting everything on fire once again.

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As pretty as that planet is, I need to figure out which entry it is and fix its 'aura'.

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This screenshot and the one above are the reason I don't want to change the texture for the Tarkas (non DLC\immersion version) since to me, it looks exactly as I'd want them to look. And the volcanic planet is pretty too. :googly:
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My dream game: Combination of Sword of the Stars 2, Angels Fall First, Conquest: Frontier Wars and Warzone 2100.

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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Fri Nov 15, 2019 11:52 pm

So today, my efforts have focused on the starmap, stellar generation, planets and stuff like that.

Image
This is an entirely customized system, and I plan on using it in order to push the limits of the game\engine.

Either way, that system also shows that the maximum size for a proper system is 9 sectors away from the star itself when using a normal star size. Not found where that can be changed as of yet, but I expect it'll be hiding somewhere.

So some information that I've gathered so far:

By default in the base game and in SoS (since it wasn't changed), the size and type of the star impact orbits - this is why there's randomization when it shouldn't be there.

Size Ia, Ib and II will add in 4 extra orbitals.
Size III will add in 2 extra orbitals.
Type K stars will remove 1 orbital.
Type M stars will remove 2 orbitals.
Orbitals which would spawn too close to the star are removed.
According to the code, orbitals which would be destroyed due to the heat of the star are also removed.

The game also tries to limit asteroid belts to 2 per system, though it isn't enforced.

While this should be known by anyone who plays Loa, the star type and possibly the size increases interference which slows down Loa population growth rates. These are the average impacts (known as Interference) by the star types.

O: -8
B: -7
A: -6
F: -6
G: -5
K: -3
M: -2

Due to experiments with being able to see exactly what goes into a new random system and my test system pictured above, I can confirm that Artifact and PlanetaryRing do nothing. They seem to be unfinished features, so essentially act as if the system rolled an empty orbital slot.
It may be possible to add those back in, but it'd be a fair amount of work and I don't think there's any models for planetary rings.

The code also confirmed that orbital inclination and eccentricity are not fully implemented and there was even a warning about it.
I don't think that can be fixed, and don't see any reason to. This isn't Homeworld, ships usually stick to the same three layers.

Anyway, PH has changed the orbital count impacted by stars - this will never be moved to SoS, so don't worry about that.
Star sizes IV to VII decrease orbital count by 1. All other sizes don't impact orbital count.
Star type O removes 1 orbital.
Star type A adds 1 orbital.
Star type K adds 2 orbitals.
Star type M removes 1 orbital.

That's all for now, want to get back to work on fiddling with that system.
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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Talverin » Mon Nov 18, 2019 3:17 am

The system you showed has a ton of sectors. Are they normal-depth sectors, or shallower? One issue I had is defense platform density; if you can make the sectors shallower and more of them, I could stack more platforms together...

... which is a thought I have that is probably motivated by being a dedicated turtler and would render any built-up system impenetrable until late game probably.

Edit: Something I thought of during my latest playthrough. Do Construction ships scale speed with your researched propulsion? Or is there a way to make them do so? Perhaps set a very high speed for them, though they are still limited by their fleet? They're just so slow, it makes it very difficult to keep up-to-date with construction when you're not Hivers.

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Re: Modding Picture of the day...

Post by Rossinna-Sama » Tue Nov 19, 2019 1:51 am

Talverin wrote:
Mon Nov 18, 2019 3:17 am
The system you showed has a ton of sectors. Are they normal-depth sectors, or shallower? One issue I had is defense platform density; if you can make the sectors shallower and more of them, I could stack more platforms together...

... which is a thought I have that is probably motivated by being a dedicated turtler and would render any built-up system impenetrable until late game probably.

Edit: Something I thought of during my latest playthrough. Do Construction ships scale speed with your researched propulsion? Or is there a way to make them do so? Perhaps set a very high speed for them, though they are still limited by their fleet? They're just so slow, it makes it very difficult to keep up-to-date with construction when you're not Hivers.
They are normal depth sectors, they only change if the system is smaller than max. As for making each sector have different densities, I want to if I can find where that is stored\controlled, but not spotted it as of yet.

As for construction ships, they do in PH but not in vanilla\SoS, no. As they are a single section design, they are limited to the speed set in their files which is fusion-era speeds. PH moves construction ships into using the model for the Repair and Salvage sections, so they can have Command and Engine sections again which does allow them to scale in speed.

If there's enough demand, I can make a SoS-version of the construction ships which uses the PH method without any other changes.
------------------------------

Due to me wanting to resume the save game in which I lost my homeworld (and am now facing rebellions since that's what PH's morale system does when you lose your homeworld.), I've gotten to work on defensive platforms. They'd been done in the past, but not in any structured manner. Right now, it is solforce only since as stated in the past, I feel comfortable releasing PH once at least that faction is in a state where I shouldn't need to touch it again.

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Missile Satellite - one defense point - starting design
"The most common defensive platform found in Human space, the Missile Satellite is armed with Polaris-sized missiles, four very heavy missile mounts, four medium and eight light turret mounts. Like all platforms, it has high structure and armor ratings. Missile Satellites are cheap and easy to build and cost one defense point to use."

Essentially a quick response and\or early game defensive platform. They have as much structural rating as 2 cruisers put together and as this is Solforce, they have extra side armor. They start with Rapid Fire SRM launchers which once you've researched the actual Rapid Fire launcher tech, can be changed to MRM or LRM specs which increases their range but lowers their rate of fire.

Image
Heavy Missile Satellite - Two defense points - Requires a tech (which right now is just called Torpedo platforms. Will be changed.)
"Costing four times as much to build and produce, this more advanced Missile Satellite comes with eight light turret mounts, eight very heavy missile mounts and four dual-linked IOBM launchers. It also has slightly better armor and structural ratings though costs 2 defense points to use."

A larger and more powerful version of the Missile Platform for when sector points are more of a concern, this used to be the Torpedo Platform from vanilla but since torpedoes in PH do not track their targets, they've been converted to IOBM mounts instead. This has been done for all factions, though only a few have them set up properly at the moment.

Image
Scanning Satellite - one defense point - currently starting design, may require research later on.
"A very basic defensive platform which while only having eight light and two medium turret mounts to defend itself with, it's primary use is to find and reveal any cloaked ships which get too close to it alongside having a large sensor range both in the tactical and strategic layers. Requires 1 defense point to field. Rumors are floating around that jamming systems may also be incorporated into this design..."

Since Cloaking is still somewhat bugged but is not disabled in PH, this still has its uses. If you ignore cloaking though, it has a large sensor range of 25,000 (most ships are 6000 to 9000, with platforms being 12000) which usually pulls you into combat earlier than they'd like, giving you more time to react and plan. It also has ECCM as mentioned, meaning it is good at making certain ships actually show up in the sensor view. Now, while I know how to do this as I've actually already done it for the CR version of the Electronic Warfare section (which is normally DN only), I'm considering attempting to do that with this platform so it hides ships just like the EW section does. However I suspect it will not play nice with the defense manager so it may either be impossible or require me to get some custom code in order for it to work.

Image
Support Satellite - Four defense points - starting design.
"Often found around worlds which are frequent targets of raids or around major production centers, Support Satellites are expensive and hard to destroy. Armed with four heavy and two very heavy turret mounts alongside a full flight of six customisable drones, this satellite also provides 3500 repair points. It costs 4 defense points to field."

One of PH's first changes ever made was to increase the CP cost of drone platforms in order to prevent the huge performance hits they often cause. Since the plan is to continue that trend of less but more powerful platforms due to FPS concerns since I know how to actually change CP totals now, they've gone back to a more normal but still fairly high CP cost. Anyway, Solforce's version is unique as it provides repair points to the system as I kinda envisioned it as more of a way station that civilian ships could use instead of bothering the military installations. Either way, drones in PH are far more powerful and scale into the reflex-era so having a few of these in a larger system may be better than using the weaker missile satellites.

Image
Battlerider Satellite - Three defense points - starting design.
"Battle Rider satellites hold three Solforce Battleriders, which you must construct and assign to each satelite in the battlerider management screen. Armed with six very heavy turret mounts, this satellite is only bested by the Asteroid Monitor in terms of its structural strength. Requires 3 defense points to field."

Personally I still refuse to use these since manually assigning battleriders is a pain in the backside; I hate doing it enough with fleet ships, let alone static defenses. But for those who have the patience to do it, these are similar to the Patrol satellite with a more combat focused layout and not costing anywhere near as much to build. Battleriders are in an odd place right now balance-wise in PH (... PH has balance?), but that's work in progress, like usual.

Image
Asteroid Monitor - Ten defense points - Requires research
"The largest and most powerful defensive option available and requiring a whopping 10 defense points to field, Asteroid Monitors are essentially Leviathan-type defensive platforms which have immense structural ratings, a lot of oversized weaponry, have some repair capacity and cost a small fortune to build and construct. All faction's Asteroid Monitors have a unique ability, Solforce has some light turrets for PD work."

They do as advertised on the tin - LV-level structural ratings with a lot of heavy and very heavy turret mounts, bonus IOBM launchers make this very hard to kill. However as it is a platform and isn't cheap defense points wise, it needs careful placement otherwise it'll be ignored. Maybe fit a grapple or two on it? :googly:

I still have to do the usual mount splitting that Solforce has for these, but otherwise their stats seem to be set barring playtesting.
Not sure whether to bring minefields back as of yet as I mentioned how hard those are to balance in a previous post as they are either game-breakingly good or utterly useless and have massive impacts on FPS rates. Right now, I'm leaning towards leaving them disabled.
Node-cannon and Node-maw remains disabled due to AI cheating with them.

Finally, I don't know if its possible since it is only a theory, but since I've found out more about stations, there is a chance I may be able to convert the currently unused Civilian station into a true defensive station (There's no trade in PH due to insane turn times later on), but that would require quite a lot of work - as usual.

Image
And just for fun, some Meson beams being fired from an Asteroid Monitor in the weapon test area.

Planets have already been buffed with their missiles, though I expect I'll continue to work on them. Numerous weapons have also had their population damage changed; pretty much lowered across the board.

Liir also has a small buff in the works, I found where the controls for the plagues are. Since Liir in PH do not have assault shuttles (though the Prestor Zuul do), they are the only faction which uses bio-weaponry (barring Zuul and their Bloodweaver Suul'ka).

Solforce has no plans for any new defensive platforms at present; there's none that'd fit their theme. While they do have a lot of very heavy mounts on their two missile sats, they are locked to missiles only. Other factions when I get to them probably won't have that restriction, or will have their own restrictions. Often it depends on what kind of mounts and their placement on the models.
Sword of the Stars 2 : Project Hiver Modder
Creator of the Work-In-Progress Seimei Visual Novel series.
My dream game: Combination of Sword of the Stars 2, Angels Fall First, Conquest: Frontier Wars and Warzone 2100.

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