Sample Gameplay

Talk about all things to do with the acclaimed 4X title.

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Postby The Magus » Thu Apr 20, 2006 2:01 am

We can force fire a warning shot, can't we? Maybe something to show our intent to blow them up if they don't leave? I wonder if the AI could tell the difference...or an edgy human player with his finger hovering over the "attack!" key for that matter. :)
The teacher cut in smoothly, "Yes, of course. SolForce never fails to remind us how necessary they are to our...'survival'. ... It amazes me that the human race ever managed to exist, before you lot came along."

Cai Rui smiled thinly. "What amazes me is how quickly the human race could cease to exist, if we were gone."

--The Deacon's Tale
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Postby dscrilla » Thu Apr 20, 2006 4:53 am

Blowing up a moon is apperently possible. That would be a decent display of firepower and nerve.
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Postby Andrew Cory » Thu Apr 20, 2006 7:34 am

Hi! You don’t speak our language yet, but we come in peace. To show you our peacefull nature, we’d like to demonstrate our power. *moon blows up*

Somehow I don’t think so...
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Postby RedDevil » Thu Apr 20, 2006 8:14 pm

Yeah, blow up a moon and all the Rebal scum and Ewoks with it!
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Tarkas - Part 1

Postby Rorschach » Sat Apr 22, 2006 7:49 pm

As always this writeup is based on a preview version of Sword of the Stars and may not be representative of the final version. I did get an updated version this week though so the detail oriented people out there will notice some differences.

As before screenshots are taken from a game running at 1024x768 then scaled to 800x600 and jpg compressed for size reasons.

Basic setup of 4 players, 60 stars in sphere configuration. See previous writeups for details on settings. The tech forest is looking a little sparse.

Turn 1:
KP has added names for all the computer players and ship design names as well. So I'm up against the SolForce Renegades (Human), Motherless Sons (Hiver), and Black Swimmers (Liir). To get into the swing of things I rename my initial ship designs: Pathfinder = Extended Range, Claw = Armor, Wayship = Tanker, Empire's Glory = Colonizer. I've got 7 stars within the 11 range of the Pathfinders so I queue up 4 using up all but 2,400 of my turn one savings of 50,000. With an industrial output of 7,000 I'll build two ships on turn 2 and two on turn 3. I might also consider building Wayships to refuel and reuse the Pathfinders instead of sending them on one way trips. Since the stars are packed relatively close I decide to research Waldo Units at the start. A Pathfinder and Waystation costs about 38k in savings, but since my industrial output is already maxed next turn I put it on full research for this turn only.

Turn 2:
I send the first two pathfinders to the nearest stars. They'll get there in 5 turns.

Turn 3:
Forgot to set my Savings - Research slider so I'll be idle building this turn with only 2,400 in savings. I set the slider to 1/2 way and send the 3rd and 4th Pathfinders out to the next two nearest stars.

Turn 4:
I queue up a Pathfinder and Wayship and set savings to 1/4.

Turn 5:
I begin long range exploration with the Path/Way fleet. I also queue up another Wayship to follow and refuel the first wave. Extended Range Tarka ships have a hefty range of 11 but by and large Tarkas have the shortest range and therefore biggest reliance on Tankers than any other race. All of my other ships have a range of 4. I ponder selecting Pulse Fission Engines as my next technology.

Turn 6
Waldo units are done a little early, I start research on Pulse Fission Engines. I got kinds hosed on the random techs, I'm pretty sure the only initial randoms I got are Disruptors and Deflectors.
The new Wayship follows one of the first wave Pathfinders. (Dunno if there's a more efficient way of doing this. I'll get 5 planets surveyed pretty quick but there will be a lag getting the second wave of planets surveyed.)

Turn 7
First two Pathfinders reach their destinations. Ke'Koralla is a hell-world with a Hazard Rating of 990+. Ke'Saal isn't much better at a size three with a Hazard Rating of 377.01. It's only redemming feature is resources over 6,300, but I don't have the empire to tackle that world yet. With over 68k in the bank I max research and queue up another Wayship.
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Tarkas - Part 2

Postby Rorschach » Sat Apr 22, 2006 8:41 pm

Turn 8:
Send out the newest Wayship to link up with another Pathfinder.

Turn 10:
Two more worlds explored. Neither is colonizeable right now with Hazard ratings of 455.54 for Ke'Kaldo and over 818 for Ke'Aloru.

Turn 11:
Pulse Fission Engines goes over budget. The Wayship makes it to Ke'Saal so I refuel the Pathfinder there and send it deeper into the cluster while sending the Wayship to Kao'Vaanu to meet up with a stranded Pathfinder at Ke'Kaldo.

Turn 11 Battle:
There's a [CLASSIFIED] at Kao'Vaanu. The Pathfinder and Wayship run like hell and fortunately get out of weapons range before it rotates around to bring it's guns to bear. My fleet decides to put that planet (another hell-world) between it and us and we survive the combat. I snapped a screenshot of me running like a little girl with a skinned knee but pixellated the [CLASSIFIED] to just be mean and tease you all. :twisted:

Turn 12:
Pulse Fission Engines are done so all designs get upgraded. I also put in Hammerhead Command sections to the Claw and Pathfinder class ships to give them another turret and extra maneuverability in combat. The surviving fleet from the battle get's the heck out of Kao'Vaanu and head's further into the cluster. I queue up a Wayship Mk2 to send out to refuel a Pathfinder and a Claw Mk2 for homeworld defense. Time to start upgrading my weapons. VRF Tech is the path to Point Defense and gives a ROF boost to all ballistic weapons to boot so it's a nice upgrade for all my Gauss Driver ships in the field.

Turn 13:
Wayship Mk2 heads for Ke'Koralla, I queue up another Claw for the homeworld.

Turn 15:
Wayship makes it to Ke'Aloru, they link up, refuel and head for Ke'Groko.

Turn 16:
Another turn another hellworld at Chytarok. The fleet refuels and moves on.

Turn 17:
Research on VRF Tech is complete and we start on Mass Drivers. The fleet that avoided the [CLASSIFIED] finds a resonable planet at Arokor. Size 4, Resrouces over 5k and a hazard rating of 102.42. I don't have the money to build the colonizer and Wayship so I set savings to 3/4. The scouting heroes of the Empire continue on to the next world. I feel luck about this fleet and give it the name Favored Ones.

Turn 18:
With over 100k in the bank I queue up a Empire's Glory, Wayship and Claw for next turn. I'll send out 3 of the Claws with the colony fleet and build back up the homeworld defense.
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Tarkas - Part 3

Postby Rorschach » Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:17 pm

Turn 20:
The colony fleet is on it's way with 11 turns before it reaches Arokor. It would be the Favored Ones to be the first contact with my neighbor, the Motherless Sons. I'll be in orbit around Etos'che two turns before them, but if I don't do well in battle, there will be a Hiver gate 5.4 away from my soon-to-be colony world.

Turn 22:
Scouting fleet finds a good world at Ka'Dola just 11 away from the homeworld. Size 4, resources over 6k and Hazard Rating under 100. I queue up an Empire's Glory and Wayship to send immediately. The other newly explored world of Zytokot is almost Ka'Dola's twin with a higher hazard rating in the 130's.

Turn 22 Battle:
The battle for Etos'che is joined. My Pathfinder and Wayship against a Tanker and Gateship. The Gate must be destroyed so I put both ships on "close to attack" orders and target the gate mission section. The ships closed and started their attack runs on the slower Hiver ship.
Eventually the massed Gauss Driver shots were enough to take out the gate and eventually the entire ship. The tanker quickly fled thereafter.

Turn 26 Battle:
Nothing much else happens until Turn 26 when I run into the Black Swimmers at Ashuumi. My guess is a Day Oluum is an Extended Range ship.
And I was right. fortunately in a one on one battle the relatively fragile Liir is no match for my Pathfinder.
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Postby the_ubernoob » Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:34 pm

Ashuumi has a climate hazard of 1151!!!!!! Just how high can the hazard level get?

*looks at calendar* still not June.
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Tarka - Part 4

Postby Rorschach » Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:41 pm

Turn 29:
Mass Drivers are complete so just to show you guys something new I start research on Disruptors.

Turn 30:
Well this should be interesting. Looks like a Hiver scout fleet is going to reach Arokor the same turn my colony fleet shows up. If it's the same Tanker and Gateship configuration my Claws should have no trouble at all. The blood of the Hivers will christen our new colony!

Turn 30 Battle:
As expected it was a Gateship and a Tanker. My Claws opened fire with barrages of long range missles.

Then closed to Gauss Driver range and gave a beatdown.

There was no hope for the bugs as the gate was quickly destroyed and the Tanker soon followed.

With the Hiver threat ended we were safe to land on Arokor and start the new colony and rule this section of space for the Tarkan Empire!
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Postby OF-pathfinder » Sat Apr 22, 2006 10:15 pm

*Wipes drool from chin*

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Postby The Writer2 » Sat Apr 22, 2006 11:09 pm

Yay! Go Tarkas!

Nice report Rorsch. ;)
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Postby Steve » Sat Apr 22, 2006 11:32 pm

God, I love these. It certainly helps with the cravings. Say, what are the odds of starting next to a planet you could colonize right away? It seems like your empire will naturally start out pretty spotty and then you fill in the gaps.
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Postby Praxis » Sun Apr 23, 2006 12:01 am

I'm purring like a kitten right now.
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Postby Avatar_Squadron » Sun Apr 23, 2006 12:14 am

Yay tarkas!!! Nice report rorsch and good job stompin' the buggers!
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Postby cathexis » Sun Apr 23, 2006 1:51 am

Kewl Beanz! On the disruptor research screenshot, what does the yellowed portion on the ship diagram represent? I'm assuming it shows which ship locations are able to carry that weapon (so mission-only on destroyers, command and mission on both cruisers and dreadnoughts).

Also, how does early-game combat affect later attempts at diplomacy? For instance, on turn 22 you jumped into a fight against the Hivers, will that mean that the computer is always going to hate you from that point on? I realize that this is a preview build and as such might not allow player/AI alliances or Non-Aggression treaties, but if it does I wonder what long-term effects a skirmish has.
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