Peter O
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These are the results from computer simulated battles between a players forces and a single Ancient. I wrote the code in BASIC (available upon request) and ran each simulation 10,000 times.

I moved the original post down a few Responses. The brief list of load outs is listed in player win %. Commentary is curtesy of (Aweberman) so please thumb his post if you wish to thumb the commentary, tech cost, and actions required information.

95% 1 Plasma Cannon/1 Electron Computer - 3 Interceptors
Actions required: 4
Tech cost: 6
Advantage: Best option of those listed. Upgrading the cannon and computer at the same time fully utilizes your Upgrade action.

94% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Positron Computer - 3 Interceptors
Actions required: 4
Tech cost: 8
Advantage: None compelling. You'd be better off with one of the less expensive higher-tech options.

93% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Improved Hull - 3 Interceptors
Actions required: 4
Tech cost: 4
Advantage: Cheap, effective tech-based option. Spending only a little more than the Gauss Shield, your chances of victory are raised from 74% to 93%, which is pretty incredible.

81% Plasma Cannon/Electron Computer - 2 Interceptors

80% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Electron Computer - 3 Interceptors
Actions required: 3
Advantage: No tech required. The best of the 3 options that use only the basic ship parts, though all 3 are pretty similar.

79% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Hull - 3 Interceptors
Actions required: 3
Advantage: No tech required. Slightly more effective than adding another Ion Cannon, which goes counter to how I would have guessed.

78% 2 Ion Cannon - 3 Interceptors
Actions required: 3
Advantage: Obviously you don't need any tech at all for this one to work, a pretty compelling argument for an early-game move.

74% 1 Ion Cannon/Gauss Shield - 3 Interceptors
Actions required (assume Terrans): 4 (research, upgrade, build, move)
Tech cost: 2
Advantage: Gauss Shield is the cheapest tech you can pick up, and one you can get in the first round quite easily (if it's there, obviously).

69% Ion Cannon/Positron Computer - 2 Interceptors

66% Ion Cannon/Advanced Hull - 2 Interceptors

48% Ion Cannon/Electron Computer - 2 Interceptors

47% 2 Ion Cannons - 2 Interceptors

46% Ion Cannon/Single Hull - 2 Interceptors

42% Ion Cannon/Gauss Shields - 2 Interceptors

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Peter O
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For anyone who cares, this is the code I used to compute advanced hull numbers. I'm happy to provide code for others should anyone ask.
Pete


10 let interwin = 0
20 let ancientwin = 0
30 let noloss = 0
40 let oneloss = 0
50 let twoloss = 0
60 let interhullbase = 3
100 for b = 1 to 10000

200 let inter = 3
210 let interhull = interhullbase
220 let ancient = 2

240 for i=1 to inter
250 let roll=rnd(6) + 1
260 if roll > 5 then ancient=ancient-1
290 next i

300 if ancient < 1 then goto 400

310 let roll=rnd(6) + 1
320 if roll > 4 then interhull = interhull -1
325 if interhull < 1 then inter = inter - 1
326 if interhull < 1 then interhull = interhullbase
330 let roll=rnd(6) + 1
340 if roll > 4 then interhull = interhull -1
345 if interhull < 1 then inter = inter - 1
346 if interhull < 1 then interhull = interhullbase

350 if inter < 1 then goto 450

360 goto 240


400 let interwin = interwin + 1
410 if inter=3 then noloss = noloss + 1
420 if inter=2 then oneloss = oneloss + 1
430 if inter=1 then twoloss = twoloss + 1

440 goto 500

450 let ancientwin = ancientwin + 1

500 next b

600 Print "Interceptors won " ; interwin; " times"
610 Print "Ancients won " ; ancientwin; " times"
620 Print "Interceptors won with no losses " ; noloss; " times"
630 Print "Interceptors won with one loss " ; oneloss; " times"
640 Print "Interceptors won with two losses " ; twoloss; " times"
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Agent J
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He's looking real sharp in his 1940's fedora. He's got nerves of steel, an iron will, and several other metal-themed attributes. His fur is water tight and he's always up for a fight.
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It should be possible to calculate out the actual probabilities given that this is dice. Although I did do a similar programming exercise to prove that Illinois Ave is the most landed on property in Monopoly (because it's 14 spaces from Jail), 13 from St Charles Place, and a chance card also brings you there as well).

Regardless, thanks for posting your results!
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Remy Gibson
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Very interesting! Coming from a background in Twilight Imperium, the combat is one of the things that is most notably different, what with the multitude of interchangeable ship parts. This has made it quite difficult for me to gauge how effective a certain set of parts are going to be (which has probably helped keep me on a more-even footing with my 10-year-old son, who thumped me 31-21 in our last game).

As a point on this, my gut told me that the Gauss Shield would be one of the more effective plays, since it halves the effectiveness of enemy fire, but it is actually the least effective combination here.

I'll sort your results from worst to best, noting only that it appears that a player is using all 3 Interceptors.

73.94% 1 Ion Cannon/Gauss Shield
Actions required (assume Terrans): 4 (research, upgrade, build, move)
Tech cost: 2
Advantage: Gauss Shield is the cheapest tech you can pick up, and one you can get in the first round quite easily (if it's there, obviously).

77.95% 2 Ion Cannon
Actions required: 3
Advantage: Obviously you don't need any tech at all for this one to work, a pretty compelling argument for an early-game move.

79.28% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Hull
Actions required: 3
Advantage: No tech required. Slightly more effective than adding another Ion Cannon, which goes counter to how I would have guessed.

80.12% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Electron Computer
Actions required: 3
Advantage: No tech required. The best of the 3 options that use only the basic ship parts, though all 3 are pretty similar.

92.86% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Improved Hull
Actions required: 4
Tech cost: 4
Advantage: Cheap, effective tech-based option. Spending only a little more than the Gauss Shield, your chances of victory are raised from 74% to 93%, which is pretty incredible.

93.73% 1 Ion Cannon/1 Positron Computer
Actions required: 4
Tech cost: 8
Advantage: None compelling. You'd be better off with one of the less expensive higher-tech options.

95.14% 1 Plasma Cannon/1 Electron Computer
Actions required: 4
Tech cost: 6
Advantage: Best option of those listed. Upgrading the cannon and computer at the same time fully utilizes your Upgrade action.
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Remy Gibson
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I would also be very interested in seeing the results run with:
- only 2 Interceptors
- 1 Cruiser
- 1 Cruiser and 1 Interceptor
(the above three being cheaper materials-wise than 3 Interceptors)
- the basic design (1 Ion Cannon)
- 1 Plasma Cannon (no computer)
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Peter O
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Aweberman wrote:
I would also be very interested in seeing the results run with:
- only 2 Interceptors
- 1 Cruiser
- 1 Cruiser and 1 Interceptor
(the above three being cheaper materials-wise than 3 Interceptors)
- the basic design (1 Ion Cannon)
- 1 Plasma Cannon (no computer)


I'll see what I can do. The 2 Interceptors are below for easy comparison. The single cruiser I'll put in a different response. The 1 Cruiser and 1 Interceptor will take a tad longer as I'll have to write the code for the games damage assignment tree (not hard, just takes longer).

These are some pretty sobering numbers for that post New Years Eclipse game.

In order with % for Interceptor win.

2 Interceptors with Plasma Cannon - 81%
Interceptors won 8076 times
Ancients won 1924 times
Interceptors won with no losses 6903 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1173 times


2 Interceptors with Positron Computer - 69%
Interceptors won 6892 times
Ancients won 3108 times
Interceptors won with no losses 4917 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1975 times


2 Interceptors with Advanced Hull - 66%
Interceptors won 6625 times
Ancients won 3375 times
Interceptors won with no losses 4491 times
Interceptors won with one loss 2134 times


2 Interceptors with Electron computer - 48%
Interceptors won 4791 times
Ancients won 5209 times
Interceptors won with no losses 3080 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1711 times


2 Interceptors with 2 ion cannons - 47%
Interceptors won 4676 times
Ancients won 5324 times
Interceptors won with no losses 3086 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1590 times


2 Interceptors with Single Hull - 46%
Interceptors won 4588 times
Ancients won 5412 times
Interceptors won with no losses 2899 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1689 times


2 Interceptors with Gauss Shields - 42%
Interceptors won 4247 times
Ancients won 5753 times
Interceptors won with no losses 2666 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1581 times


Edited because I forgot to change the tracking part of the code. Fixed now.

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Peter O
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Original Post
Hi All,
I figured a new thread should be use for this as instead of manually doing battles I sat down and wrote some BASIC code (my first program since 1994).

All battles were run 10,000 times.

The results are in:

For two ion cannon interceptors:
Interceptors won 7795 times
Ancients won 2205 times
Interceptors won with no losses 4784 times
Interceptors won with one loss 2140 times
Interceptors won with two losses 871 times

For interceptors with one cannon and basic computer
Interceptors won 8012 times
Ancients won 1988 times
Interceptors won with no losses 4794 times
Interceptors won with one loss 2296 times
Interceptors won with two losses 922 times

For interceptors with one Plasma cannon and basic computer
Interceptors won 9514 times
Ancients won 486 times
Interceptors won with no losses 8040 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1111 times
Interceptors won with two losses 363 times

For interceptors with Gauss shield and one ion cannon
Interceptors won 7394 times
Ancients won 2606 times
Interceptors won with no losses 4141 times
Interceptors won with one loss 2289 times
Interceptors won with two losses 964 times

For interceptors with one extra hull
Interceptors won 7928 times
Ancients won 2072 times
Interceptors won with no losses 4536 times
Interceptors won with one loss 2524 times
Interceptors won with two losses 868 times

For interceptors with Advanced hull
Interceptors won 9286 times
Ancients won 714 times
Interceptors won with no losses 6476 times
Interceptors won with one loss 2276 times
Interceptors won with two losses 534 times

For interceptors with Positron Computer
Interceptors won 9373 times
Ancients won 627 times
Interceptors won with no losses 6896 times
Interceptors won with one loss 1894 times
Interceptors won with two losses 583 times

I need to get to new years. I'll let you disect the results.
Pete
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Philip Morton
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tranenturm wrote:
2 Interceptors with Plasma Cannon - 81%
Interceptors won 8076 times
Ancients won 1924 times
Interceptors won with no losses 0 times
Interceptors won with one loss 6903 times
Interceptors won with two losses 1173 times

I'm guessing the one-loss number should really be the zero-loss number, and the two-loss number should be the one-loss number?
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Peter O
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Chrondeath wrote:
tranenturm wrote:
2 Interceptors with Plasma Cannon - 81%
Interceptors won 8076 times
Ancients won 1924 times
Interceptors won with no losses 0 times
Interceptors won with one loss 6903 times
Interceptors won with two losses 1173 times

I'm guessing the one-loss number should really be the zero-loss number, and the two-loss number should be the one-loss number?


Yep! Thanks for pointing that out. I only changed the inter=3 to inter=2 at the start of the code and forgot that I reported by using if inter=2 then print 1 loss...
 
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Forrest & Ryan Driskel
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Careful you don't ruin the game for yourself! I also wrote / am writing a combat simulator, for testing missiles as the main goal and then new ship parts.
 
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Peter O
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Vanish wrote:
Careful you don't ruin the game for yourself!


Too true! But this game is very much about the Diplomacy for me as it is about other stuff. A few percentage points one way or the other won'tmake much change. The only BIG revelation so for is the Gauss Shield results. Its a shame it came in behind the non-research techs.

I'd be interested in hearing about your simulator. I'm currently waffling on which language to use. I used BASIC for the first round cause I knew it and knew the program would be relatively easy. But as things expand, I'm wondering about switching to Java which would be totally new to me. The upside is I wouldn't be using a dead computer language and others could participate more.

Well, I did learn FORTRAN 77 in college, anyone still using that? whistle
 
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Forrest & Ryan Driskel
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tranenturm wrote:
I'd be interested in hearing about your simulator. I'm currently waffling on which language to use.


I threw mine together in Javascript so it would be easily web accesible.
 
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stephen biggs
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Aweberman wrote:
I would also be very interested in seeing the results run with:
- only 2 Interceptors
- 1 Cruiser
- 1 Cruiser and 1 Interceptor
(the above three being cheaper materials-wise than 3 Interceptors)
- the basic design (1 Ion Cannon)
- 1 Plasma Cannon (no computer)


some results:
Orion cruiser with hull+1 replacing the 3-energy.
75.75%
Eridani Cruiser with {shield-1, plasma cannon}
83%
I did a few calculations for cruiser+interceptor:
If you only use 1 upgrade action. You either have to split the upgrade, 1 component on cruiser & 1 component on interceptor. In that case the reduced efectiveness of the cruiser more than offsets the addition of the interceptor. i.e. the two partially upgraded ships are actually weaker than the cruiser on it's own.
Or you can fully upgrade the cruiser & leave the interceptor as standard: In which case the interceptor won't have shields & can be destroyed by any dice which rolls a 5, without significantly improving the cruisers odds.
If you use two upgrade actions to fully upgrade both ships. The interceptor does improve the odds. But I wonder if it's worth that many actions to kill 1 ancient ship. might be better to explore other hexes.

Dreadnought (no upgrades) V's 1 alien ship
win: 78%
loss:22%
Dreadnought+interceptor (no upgrades) V's 1 alien ship.
win: 39%
win (interceptor destroyed): 51%
Loss:11%
Including the interceptor increase the odds to win, but also increases the average losses.
Loosing a dreadnought on turn-1/2 is fairly catastophic, so it's worth expending the interceptor to halve the odds of that.
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Jeremy Diachuk
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That's odd. My calculations are showing that 3 Interceptors with Ion Cannon and Gauss Shield vs an Ancient should win only 51% of the time. I wonder if I made a mistake somewhere.

[edit: removed numbers since they're misleading due to an error somewhere, not sure where, but I'll redo it some other time, haha.]
 
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Philip Morton
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taggedjc wrote:
That's odd. My calculations are showing that 3 Interceptors with Ion Cannon and Gauss Shield vs an Ancient should win only 51% of the time. I wonder if I made a mistake somewhere.

I just did up a simulator in Python, and my results are roughly matching the other simulator figures here (26.7% chance to lose with 3x ion+shield, 21% chance to lose with 3x plasma w/no computer, 5% chance to lose with 3x plasma w/+1 computer)

Quote:
3 Interceptors with Plasma Cannon vs Ancient
Loss 4.23%
Win 78.75%
Win 1 3.15%
Win 2 19.45%
Win 3 56.15%

3 Interceptors with Plasma Cannon & +1 Computer vs Ancient
Loss 0.58%
Win 97.53%
Win 1 1.02%
Win 2 5.99%
Win 3 90.53%

These plasma cannon numbers seem very strange--they're not adding up to 100%...
 
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Jeremy Diachuk
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I noticed that. Which is very, very strange, since my spreadsheet was also keeping track of the total %'s to make sure my totals were 100% as they should be.

I must have made a mistake somewhere. I'll redo the work sometime when I get a chance.

Thanks for additional confirmation. I'll remove the statistics from my post since they're quite obviously flawed. Heheh. Sorry about that.
 
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stephen biggs
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Quick formula for question "should my fleet engage that ancient.?"
multiply the following.
a) Number Of hits (ie. number of hull +1)
b) Total damage by guns.
c) Total computers +1.
d) If ship has any shields = 2.
e.g. an interceptor (not upgraded) = 1(no hull) * 1(Ion gun) * 1 (no computer) *2(shield) = 2
On this formulae the ancient ship = 8.
For multiple (n) interceptors multiply by = n(n+1)/2
so 2 non-upgraded interceptors = 6
and 3 = 12.
And a pair of ancients = 24.


This formulae doesn't translate to exact odds, but it is a quick (and accurate) guideline on how many ships you need for 50/50 odds.
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Petri Savola
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I just wrote a combat simulator which can simulate any fights (but using suboptimal AI, which obeys the game rules in simple fights such as GCDS or ancients).

My results match fairly well with the original post, but I wouldn't use very accurate numbers such as 95,14% when the result is an average from only 10000 simulations (just use 95% instead).

XAos, are you sure about your results with Eridani cruiser and unupgraded dreadnought? I got those results if I let the attacker have initiative, but the alien will get to shoot first and then the results will be different.

Cruiser with plasma cannon and phase shield: 75%
Dreadnought without upgrades: 65%
One unupgraded Orion cruiser: 56%
Two unupgraded Orion cruisers: 95%

Post a message if you're interested in other combats (I can calculate missiles, double ancients or GCDS too).
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Petri Savola
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Some odds for a single cruiser against a single ancient:

Basic: 17%
Basic + Fusion Drive: 28%
Basic + Electron Computer: 29%
Basic + Hull: 34%
Basic + Ion Cannon: 40%
Basic + Phase Shield: 46%
Basic + Fusion Drive + Hull: 47%
Basic + Fusion Drive + Electron Computer: 47%
Basic + Improved Hull: 51%
Basic + Plasma Cannon: 51%
Basic + Fusion Drive + Phase Shield: 56%
Basic + Positron Computer: 64%
Basic + Imrpoved Hull + Ion Cannon (replacing Hull): 65%
Basic + Imrpoved Hull + Improved Hull (replacing Hull): 65%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Electron Computer: 65%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Hull: 71%
Basic + Positron Computer + Phase Shield (replacing Electron Computer): 74%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Phase Shield: 75%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull: 83%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull + Electron Computer (replacing Hull): 85%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull + Improved Hull (replacing Hull): 89%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull + Phase Shield (replacing Hull): 90%
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Harald Korneliussen
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I wonder where you even came across a BASIC interpretor that uses line numbers these days. Do you have a Commodore 64 stocked away somewhere or something?

But I totally respect the effective use of skills already learned!
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Antti Autio
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Gina, Escher gang leader (Necromunda). Don't mess with her or she'll kick your ass.. actually, she's gonna do it anyway!
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Petri wrote:
Some odds for a single cruiser against a single ancient:

Basic: 17%
Basic + Fusion Drive: 28%
Basic + Electron Computer: 29%
Basic + Hull: 34%
Basic + Ion Cannon: 40%
Basic + Phase Shield: 46%
Basic + Fusion Drive + Hull: 47%
Basic + Fusion Drive + Electron Computer: 47%
Basic + Improved Hull: 51%
Basic + Plasma Cannon: 51%
Basic + Fusion Drive + Phase Shield: 56%
Basic + Positron Computer: 64%
Basic + Imrpoved Hull + Ion Cannon (replacing Hull): 65%
Basic + Imrpoved Hull + Improved Hull (replacing Hull): 65%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Electron Computer: 65%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Hull: 71%
Basic + Positron Computer + Phase Shield (replacing Electron Computer): 74%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Phase Shield: 75%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull: 83%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull + Electron Computer (replacing Hull): 85%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull + Improved Hull (replacing Hull): 89%
Basic + Plasma Cannon + Improved Hull + Phase Shield (replacing Hull): 90%

This is great. thumbsup Not to nitpick, but I do believe you mean Gauss Shield (-1) instead of Phase Shield (-2) in those calculations?
 
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