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Subject: Question for Designers... ship number rss

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Loren Cadelinia
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I was wondering if you guys had experimented/playtested with a different number of ships, ie more than 2 dreadnaughts.

Or was the ship number set from the start(production-wise) and the game balanced around them?

The reason I ask is that I have seldom seen a successful dreadnaught only strategy. Perhaps, the game was not meant to be played in this manner, but I have seen successful interceptor-only, and cruiser-only fleets. For their high cost, added time to upgrade, and low limit (2), I would expect a comparable dreadnaught-only fleet (if someone wanted to make one of course), but that does not appear to be so.

The successful fully upgraded dreadnaught strategies need either interceptor/starbase support to be an effective fleet, and perhaps this was balanced this way on purpose.

Before everybody jumps all over me, I don't think the game is broken at all, and I don't intend to change the game. I do, however, like to experiment for myself for fun. For example, 5 cruisers, 3 dreadnaughts.

I'm considering buying another set of ships, either through another eclipse copy or another game, so I can experiment with different ship numbers for fun. Obviously I could already experiment just using different colored ships...

But, to the designers, if this has been tinkered with already, and failed with different ship numbers, this would save me some time. Thank you for listening.

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Loren. Nobody is going to jump all over you. In fact, unlike noobs that start threads on how they are going to remake or fix the game because of luck or OP elements, I think your questions are great.

First let me say that on our second and third game people were asking simular questions to yours. All I can say is that as you play the game, you'll see that if they had implimented your questions, the game would turn out to be about 80% battle. With limited ships, you need to really think where each "chess piece" is going to be placed and used best. Unlimited ships would mean unlimited units, and unlimited battles; which would mean unlimited churning out of ships. Far more like a RTS computer game. After that, get ready for all those threads starting with "They got more minerals than me, and could make more ships, NO FAIR!".

Add to that, many in our group did not understand the "9 turns and game over" aspect. Again, as you play, you'll see that too would have end up with a battle only victory. The longer the game, the more battles only would be a viable way of winning.

As you keep playing, you'll find that Elcipse is simular to wine. You'll have a few dislike it after a couple of sips, as they are use to the quick effects of shots of hard liquer (nothing wrong with that, as I love Tequila ). But the more you play, the more you see they "aged" the game just right. . .


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Petri Savola
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In my opinion the ship count limitations feel just about right. Unless you're playing Terran, movement costs a lot of money so you'll want to use the dreadnoughts when you have to attack someone. Currently I use dreadnoughts more often than cruisers (it used to be the other way around).
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Paul Paella
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Also consider that more ships on the board will slow the game down. As Purple mentioned, more ships will most likely result in more combat and that means more time to play. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but keep in mind that a lot of folks enjoy Eclipse because it doesn't drag out too long.

I've seen some nasty dreadnought builds, especially ones with discovery techs, namely the power source tech. A fast moving dreadnought pair can cause, at least, some concern for your enemies.

I suspect the expansion won't add new blueprint types for player ships, due to the race boards from the main game. They could add a small companion board to allow for more designs but I doubt that will happen.
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Mathue Faulkner
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While I agree with the gist of the comments thus far, the OP is really only suggesting an additional one dreadnought and one cruiser to the supply. It isn't going to be any easier to collect the resources to build said ships, so I'm not convinced it will make a big difference in terms of 'increasing the # of battles' (and hence slowing the game down) or 'unlimited ships causing unlimited battles and thus unlimited churning out of ships'... Unless the materials production is increased, I don't see how adding one more ship of each type is going to have that strong of an effect. There is some validity to Purple's point about luck of the draw in flipping materials planets (as materials will be slightly more important), but I don't think it's game breaking if we're only talking about one cruiser and one dreadnought. It also makes the dreadnoughts a bit stronger (which may imbalance the game?), and makes the upgrade action slightly weaker (since you may be able to focus on just one ship type).

I don't think the game needs more ships, but I wouldn't be opposed to trying out the addition of a couple more just to see how it plays out....
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Daniel Hammond
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mfaulk80 wrote:
While I agree with the gist of the comments thus far, the OP is really only suggesting an additional one dreadnought and one cruiser to the supply. It isn't going to be any easier to collect the resources to build said ships, so I'm not convinced it will make a big difference in terms of 'increasing the # of battles' (and hence slowing the game down) or 'unlimited ships causing unlimited battles and thus unlimited churning out of ships'... Unless the materials production is increased, I don't see how adding one more ship of each type is going to have that strong of an effect. There is some validity to Purple's point about luck of the draw in flipping materials planets (as materials will be slightly more important), but I don't think it's game breaking if we're only talking about one cruiser and one dreadnought. It also makes the dreadnoughts a bit stronger (which may imbalance the game?), and makes the upgrade action slightly weaker (since you may be able to focus on just one ship type).

I don't think the game needs more ships, but I wouldn't be opposed to trying out the addition of a couple more just to see how it plays out....


I think the balance can't get much better. The most useful ships are those you can tweak the most, but you can only have 2 of them. The middle ships you can spread around a bit more (since you have 4) but can't make them quite as deadly or tough. The small ships whose real value is quantity, can be tough or decent, but not really both (but each one still pins a ship).
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Mathue Faulkner
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dlhammond wrote:

I think the balance can't get much better. The most useful ships are those you can tweak the most, but you can only have 2 of them. The middle ships you can spread around a bit more (since you have 4) but can't make them quite as deadly or tough. The small ships whose real value is quantity, can be tough or decent, but not really both (but each one still pins a ship).


Yeah, I don't necessarily disagree. I just wanted to point out that the OP wasn't talking about 'unlimited ships' but rather the addition of only a couple ships.
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Daniel Hammond
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mfaulk80 wrote:

Yeah, I don't necessarily disagree. I just wanted to point out that the OP wasn't talking about 'unlimited ships' but rather the addition of only a couple ships.


I wasn't talking unlimited either. But the reason I usually build cruisers instead of dreadnoughts is because 2 ships isn't enough. A 50% increase in dreadnoughts is a pretty big change, the extra cruiser is much less of an issue, but drains away the value of interceptors.
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Mathue Faulkner
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dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:

Yeah, I don't necessarily disagree. I just wanted to point out that the OP wasn't talking about 'unlimited ships' but rather the addition of only a couple ships.


I wasn't talking unlimited either. But the reason I usually build cruisers instead of dreadnoughts is because 2 ships isn't enough. A 50% increase in dreadnoughts is a pretty big change, the extra cruiser is much less of an issue, but drains away the value of interceptors.


Hmm...it is interesting when you point out that it's a 50% increase (points out that it may have a larger effect than I'm giving it credit for). I'm a Cruiser guy myself, and I've failed any time I try to go Dreadnought. I blame my own play, but that is part of the reason I'd be interested to see how adding an extra Dread would change gameplay...
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Loren Cadelinia
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Thanks for everyone's responses. I do respect the ship limits, and I was not suggesting "unlimited" ships.

To prevent confusion, I should probably narrow my question:

Has anybody, designer/playtester/or anyone, experimented with a different limit number of ships?...ie 3 dreadnaughts.

While I really do appreciate comments pro or con for trying this, I'm really interested on the results of any actual playtesting, rather than what 'feels' right (although those comments are welcome as well).

 
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Touko Tahkokallio
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During the development we actually tried not to vary the ship counts too much and it is pretty much always been the 8,4,2 + 4 starbases distribution. Instead, we took it as one of the base points for the development and we tried to balance the game around that. I do think the distribution of the ships is an interesting one, but honestly I think we should thank Galactic Emperor for this fine choice!

The resource tracks and the influence track are another example, where we did very little changes along the way. I believe it is important to try keep some aspects of the game as constant as possible when developing a game as it is the only way to constructively iterate a game.
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Loren Cadelinia
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Touko wrote:
During the development we actually tried not to vary the ship counts too much and it is pretty much always been the 8,4,2 + 4 starbases distribution. Instead, we took it as one of the base points for the development and we tried to balance the game around that. I do think the distribution of the ships is an interesting one, but honestly I think we should thank Galactic Emperor for this fine choice!

The resource tracks and the influence track are another example, where we did very little changes along the way. I believe it is important to try keep some aspects of the game as constant as possible when developing a game as it is the only way to constructively iterate a game.


Thank you for your response, and for a great game!
 
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Daniel Hammond
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mfaulk80 wrote:
dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:

Yeah, I don't necessarily disagree. I just wanted to point out that the OP wasn't talking about 'unlimited ships' but rather the addition of only a couple ships.


I wasn't talking unlimited either. But the reason I usually build cruisers instead of dreadnoughts is because 2 ships isn't enough. A 50% increase in dreadnoughts is a pretty big change, the extra cruiser is much less of an issue, but drains away the value of interceptors.


Hmm...it is interesting when you point out that it's a 50% increase (points out that it may have a larger effect than I'm giving it credit for). I'm a Cruiser guy myself, and I've failed any time I try to go Dreadnought. I blame my own play, but that is part of the reason I'd be interested to see how adding an extra Dread would change gameplay...


I am guessing you haven't seen 2 missile Dreadnoughts destroy 4 cruisers and 4 starbases before. (Orion particularly nasty as you can overbuild the energy source and still have enough energy for 2 +2 computers and a drive).
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:
dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:

Yeah, I don't necessarily disagree. I just wanted to point out that the OP wasn't talking about 'unlimited ships' but rather the addition of only a couple ships.


I wasn't talking unlimited either. But the reason I usually build cruisers instead of dreadnoughts is because 2 ships isn't enough. A 50% increase in dreadnoughts is a pretty big change, the extra cruiser is much less of an issue, but drains away the value of interceptors.


Hmm...it is interesting when you point out that it's a 50% increase (points out that it may have a larger effect than I'm giving it credit for). I'm a Cruiser guy myself, and I've failed any time I try to go Dreadnought. I blame my own play, but that is part of the reason I'd be interested to see how adding an extra Dread would change gameplay...


I am guessing you haven't seen 2 missile Dreadnoughts destroy 4 cruisers and 4 starbases before. (Orion particularly nasty as you can overbuild the energy source and still have enough energy for 2 +2 computers and a drive).


I don't want this to turn into a missile discussion. But to be fair, the better comparison would be 2 missile dreadnoughts versus 4 missile cruisers w/ and w/o 4 missile starbases. Dreadnoughts would be dead in the water lacking initiative advantage.

How would 2 non-missile dreadnoughts fare against 4 non-missile cruiser and 4 non-missile starbases? This obviously depends on how they're upgraded, but likely they'd still easily lose.
 
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Kim Choy
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dyepbr wrote:
dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:
dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:

Yeah, I don't necessarily disagree. I just wanted to point out that the OP wasn't talking about 'unlimited ships' but rather the addition of only a couple ships.


I wasn't talking unlimited either. But the reason I usually build cruisers instead of dreadnoughts is because 2 ships isn't enough. A 50% increase in dreadnoughts is a pretty big change, the extra cruiser is much less of an issue, but drains away the value of interceptors.


Hmm...it is interesting when you point out that it's a 50% increase (points out that it may have a larger effect than I'm giving it credit for). I'm a Cruiser guy myself, and I've failed any time I try to go Dreadnought. I blame my own play, but that is part of the reason I'd be interested to see how adding an extra Dread would change gameplay...


I am guessing you haven't seen 2 missile Dreadnoughts destroy 4 cruisers and 4 starbases before. (Orion particularly nasty as you can overbuild the energy source and still have enough energy for 2 +2 computers and a drive).


I don't want this to turn into a missile discussion. But to be fair, the better comparison would be 2 missile dreadnoughts versus 4 missile cruisers w/ and w/o 4 missile starbases. Dreadnoughts would be dead in the water lacking initiative advantage.

How would 2 non-missile dreadnoughts fare against 4 non-missile cruiser and 4 non-missile starbases? This obviously depends on how they're upgraded, but likely they'd still easily lose.


Keeping in mind that in terms of materials cost, 2 dreadnoughts are 16 materials and 1 build action, plus up to 4 upgrade actions vs. 32 materials and 4 build actions for the cruisers + starbases (assuming the Terran baseline and no nanobots), plus up to 6 upgrade actions. I would hope, in this case, that the dreadnoughts do not win this fight otherwise building anything else would be clearly sub-optimal until you run out of dreadnoughts.

Obviously this over-simplifies the problem but it gives a baseline for the discussion.

Also, you could analyze your OP the same way. 2 dreadnoughts are 16 materials, 4 cruisers are 20, and 8 interceptors are 24. It takes more actions to build and move the smaller ships and you only save on one upgrade action per class smaller.
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Loren Cadelinia
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umchoyka wrote:
dyepbr wrote:
dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:
dlhammond wrote:
mfaulk80 wrote:

Yeah, I don't necessarily disagree. I just wanted to point out that the OP wasn't talking about 'unlimited ships' but rather the addition of only a couple ships.


I wasn't talking unlimited either. But the reason I usually build cruisers instead of dreadnoughts is because 2 ships isn't enough. A 50% increase in dreadnoughts is a pretty big change, the extra cruiser is much less of an issue, but drains away the value of interceptors.


Hmm...it is interesting when you point out that it's a 50% increase (points out that it may have a larger effect than I'm giving it credit for). I'm a Cruiser guy myself, and I've failed any time I try to go Dreadnought. I blame my own play, but that is part of the reason I'd be interested to see how adding an extra Dread would change gameplay...


I am guessing you haven't seen 2 missile Dreadnoughts destroy 4 cruisers and 4 starbases before. (Orion particularly nasty as you can overbuild the energy source and still have enough energy for 2 +2 computers and a drive).


I don't want this to turn into a missile discussion. But to be fair, the better comparison would be 2 missile dreadnoughts versus 4 missile cruisers w/ and w/o 4 missile starbases. Dreadnoughts would be dead in the water lacking initiative advantage.

How would 2 non-missile dreadnoughts fare against 4 non-missile cruiser and 4 non-missile starbases? This obviously depends on how they're upgraded, but likely they'd still easily lose.


Keeping in mind that in terms of materials cost, 2 dreadnoughts are 16 materials and 1 build action, plus up to 4 upgrade actions vs. 32 materials and 4 build actions for the cruisers + starbases (assuming the Terran baseline and no nanobots), plus up to 6 upgrade actions. I would hope, in this case, that the dreadnoughts do not win this fight otherwise building anything else would be clearly sub-optimal until you run out of dreadnoughts.

Obviously this over-simplifies the problem but it gives a baseline for the discussion.

Also, you could analyze your OP the same way. 2 dreadnoughts are 16 materials, 4 cruisers are 20, and 8 interceptors are 24. It takes more actions to build and move the smaller ships and you only save on one upgrade action per class smaller.


I was going to mention this, and actually the material cost was the basis for my inquiry in the first place.

8 interceptors: 24 materials
5 cruisers: 25 materials
3 dreadnaughts: 24 materials

Edit: These numbers were based on having more or less equal material cost to base ship limit for each type.

The smaller the ships, the more ships there are. This means more actions to move the fleet, more actions to build, but also more total area for pinning/defense/offensive neutron raids.

The bigger ships are fewer in number. They take more actions to upgrade, fewer actions to build, but they are easier to move compared to many ships. They also cover less area and don't pin as well, get pinned EASILY, not as effective on multiple neutron raids, but the offensive/defensive punch is concentrated to fewer hexes.

I know the game is not balanced in this manner, but that is how I envisioned balancing the ship limit on a material cost basis only, using a fleet of a single ship type to simplify math and ease of visualization.

The disparity in material cost for the game as is (16 for 2 dread, versus 20 for 4 cruisers, and 24 for 8 interceptors), shows why, at least for me, a dread only strategy has not prevailed, compared to the other ship types. The additional materials need to be spent on other available ships to have a comparable fleet.

Like I said before, the game is NOT broken because of this... you simply build other available ships to compensate. Having said that, I wanted to experiment with adding 1 dread and 1 cruiser. I don't think it would break the game, but I have yet to test it either.
 
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Petri Savola
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dyepbr wrote:
I don't want this to turn into a missile discussion. But to be fair, the better comparison would be 2 missile dreadnoughts versus 4 missile cruisers w/ and w/o 4 missile starbases. Dreadnoughts would be dead in the water lacking initiative advantage.

Actually, dreadnoughts are the ultimate way of fighting when it comes to initiative.

Plug in two fusion sources, two tachyon drives and two gluon computers and you'll get to fire missiles with initiative 11, which is almost always enough to fire first. If your opponent does similar extreme things to win the initiative, you just switch 1 of the 2 missile components to another gluon computer for initiative 13. I don't believe you can even theoretically match this initiative with any other ship type.

Edit: Actually, a cruiser with hyper grid source, 3 tachyon drives and gluon computer will also get initiative 13, but this can be countered with tachyon sources and 3 tachyon drives in the dreadnought.
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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Petri wrote:
dyepbr wrote:
I don't want this to turn into a missile discussion. But to be fair, the better comparison would be 2 missile dreadnoughts versus 4 missile cruisers w/ and w/o 4 missile starbases. Dreadnoughts would be dead in the water lacking initiative advantage.

Actually, dreadnoughts are the ultimate way of fighting when it comes to initiative.

Plug in two fusion sources, two tachyon drives and two gluon computers and you'll get to fire missiles with initiative 11, which is almost always enough to fire first. If your opponent does similar extreme things to win the initiative, you just switch 1 of the 2 missile components to another gluon computer for initiative 13. I don't believe you can even theoretically match this initiative with any other ship type.

Edit: Actually, a cruiser with hyper grid source, 3 tachyon drives and gluon computer will also get initiative 13, but this can be countered with tachyon sources and 3 tachyon drives in the dreadnought.


This is true. But if dreadnaught went extreme initiative (with 2 fusion sources, 2 tachyon drives, 2 gluon comp, 2 plasma missile), they only have 4 missiles each per dread, a total of 8 hits if no 1's are rolled. If we combine your example with the one he gave above, they would still NOT kill 4 basic cruisers and 4 basic starbases, w/ starbases taking two hits a piece. Adding missiles to these ships without covering hull yields the same results, with the dread's taking 1 hit each to fall.

A single additional hull on a cruiser makes them take two hits as well, not to mention any improved hull upgrades to either cruiser or starbase.

Obviously every build will have a counter. But my point was that the example he gave was not exactly a sure win with all things being equal.

If he meant more missiles (less initiative), then the missile cruisers and missile starbases would fire first killing the dreads. If he meant extreme initiative missile dreads (4 upgrade actions and 4 research actions, 1 build action), he would still lose, and a modest upgrade of 1 hull, or 2 improved hull (1 upgrade action, 1 research action, 4 build actions) on cruisers makes the dreadnaughts EVEN MORE SO dead in the water, with minimal losses on the cruiser/starbase side.
 
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Daniel Hammond
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I meant that 2 Dreads with missiles COULD take out 4 starbases and 4 cruisers with average non-missile builds. Initiative is irrelevant in that case.

Once it becomes a battle of missiles, cruisers (offense) and starbases (defense) are much better.

Edit and if you are strictly fighting missile fleets then heavily armored and or heavily shielded cruisers and starbases could survive.
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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My point was, you get closer odds by narrowing the material disparity (concerning dreads vs cruisers).

2 dreads (16 materials) would need some other support in the form of 8-16 materials to have a chance versus 4 cruiser 4 starbase (32 materials).

Here is a more simple example (using combat simulator):

Example: 4 basic cruiser (20 mat) versus 2 basic dreads (16 mat):
Result: cruisers win 77 - 23, out of 100 battles

Example: 4 basic cruiser (20 mat) versus 2 basic dreads and 1 interceptor (19 mat)... difference of 1 material
Result: cruisers win 52-48, out of 100 *much closer

Conclusion: a dreadnaught strategy needs support in the form of other ships to face a fleet if opponents spent more materials than 16 (assuming all things being equal and no one has upgrade advantage)

What I am proposing:

Example: 5 cruisers (25 mat) vs 3 dreads (24 mat)...material disparity of 1
Results: ran 3 times. 47-53, 50-50, 53-47 wins

Now, there is a problem with all of this. I ran these numbers against a cruiser strategy, which is the most common I have seen in all my games.

The game as is...8 interceptors match up quite evenly with 4 cruisers (at 50:50 wins) and they have similar, albeit less, ownage over 2 dreads (65-35 wins) compared to 4 cruisers vs 2 dread (75-25 wins).

By evening up the cruiser (5) vs dread (3) match up material-wise (50:50 wins), it unevens the interceptor (8) vs cruiser (5) match-ups (21:79 wins), and flips the interceptor vs dread match-ups (15:85 wins).

In essence, this does de-emphasize an interceptor only strategy, but does place more value in a dreadnought only strategy. People will have problems with this, but I think thematically this makes sense.

3 giant starships should have no problem with 8 fighters. 3 giant starships should be about equal to 5 medium sized starships. In the space empire theme, IMO, the emphasis for constructing a starfleet should be medium-large starships, with smaller ship support (rather than a fleet of small ships only). Interceptors are great for early game battles and offensive/defense/pinning support of larger ships later in the game.

Again, the above paragraph is my opinion, and feel free to disagree.
 
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Daniel Hammond
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Like I said I don't look at it from the same point of view.

Interceptors for me are more useful for pinning and rarely do I upgrade them.

Cruisers are important if you are going to play aggressively (because you need to spread around your forces).

Dreadnoughts are deterrents and useful if my goal is to push forward into one hex and hold it.

I think matching up against basic builds is worthless, because none of the builds that are basic should hold value in the mid to late game. Then it is all a question of builds and the builds you have are more important to winning than anything else.

Fight those dreadnoughts against 8 INT with Antimatter cannons and +3 computers unless you have a good mix of shields and armor or you are a missile heavy build with good computers...

Having 3 dreadnoughts makes building cruisers less likely because why upgrade cruisers when I can have 3 dreadnoughts?
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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dlhammond wrote:


I think matching up against basic builds is worthless, because none of the builds that are basic should hold value in the mid to late game. Then it is all a question of builds and the builds you have are more important to winning than anything else.


The basic builds were for simplicity.
I upgraded cruisers (5) with (1 positron, 1 fusion, plasma), and upgraded dreads (3) with (1 positron, 1 fusion, plasma) and the results are 54-46, 51-49, 49-51 for 3 simulations at 100 battles, more or less still equal. Obviously the upgrade builds are important, and become more important when the dreads can place more upgrades and cruisers run out of space.

dlhammond wrote:


Having 3 dreadnoughts makes building cruisers less likely because why upgrade cruisers when I can have 3 dreadnoughts?


Because I can pin 3 dreads with 3 cruisers, and still have 2 cruisers to neutron raid 2 separate hexes, which could be a 12 point swing if hexes are 3 VP each. (material cost is difference of 1).

Edit: It's a trade-off, offensive prowess per ship, vs having more ships.
 
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dyepbr wrote:
Petri wrote:
dyepbr wrote:
I don't want this to turn into a missile discussion. But to be fair, the better comparison would be 2 missile dreadnoughts versus 4 missile cruisers w/ and w/o 4 missile starbases. Dreadnoughts would be dead in the water lacking initiative advantage.

Actually, dreadnoughts are the ultimate way of fighting when it comes to initiative.

Plug in two fusion sources, two tachyon drives and two gluon computers and you'll get to fire missiles with initiative 11, which is almost always enough to fire first. If your opponent does similar extreme things to win the initiative, you just switch 1 of the 2 missile components to another gluon computer for initiative 13. I don't believe you can even theoretically match this initiative with any other ship type.

Edit: Actually, a cruiser with hyper grid source, 3 tachyon drives and gluon computer will also get initiative 13, but this can be countered with tachyon sources and 3 tachyon drives in the dreadnought.


This is true. But if dreadnaught went extreme initiative (with 2 fusion sources, 2 tachyon drives, 2 gluon comp, 2 plasma missile), they only have 4 missiles each per dread, a total of 8 hits if no 1's are rolled. If we combine your example with the one he gave above, they would still NOT kill 4 basic cruisers and 4 basic starbases, w/ starbases taking two hits a piece. Adding missiles to these ships without covering hull yields the same results, with the dread's taking 1 hit each to fall.

A single additional hull on a cruiser makes them take two hits as well, not to mention any improved hull upgrades to either cruiser or starbase.

Obviously every build will have a counter. But my point was that the example he gave was not exactly a sure win with all things being equal.

If he meant more missiles (less initiative), then the missile cruisers and missile starbases would fire first killing the dreads. If he meant extreme initiative missile dreads (4 upgrade actions and 4 research actions, 1 build action), he would still lose, and a modest upgrade of 1 hull, or 2 improved hull (1 upgrade action, 1 research action, 4 build actions) on cruisers makes the dreadnaughts EVEN MORE SO dead in the water, with minimal losses on the cruiser/starbase side.

Well, in the end the player who gets the last upgrade action will win.

Dreadnoughts should only be upgraded to extremely high initiative if they need it (they're fighting against other missiles).

If opponent has starbases with gluon computers and missiles, the most efficient way to beat that defence is to build a pair of high initiative dreadnoughts with missiles.
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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Petri wrote:
dyepbr wrote:
Petri wrote:
dyepbr wrote:
I don't want this to turn into a missile discussion. But to be fair, the better comparison would be 2 missile dreadnoughts versus 4 missile cruisers w/ and w/o 4 missile starbases. Dreadnoughts would be dead in the water lacking initiative advantage.

Actually, dreadnoughts are the ultimate way of fighting when it comes to initiative.

Plug in two fusion sources, two tachyon drives and two gluon computers and you'll get to fire missiles with initiative 11, which is almost always enough to fire first. If your opponent does similar extreme things to win the initiative, you just switch 1 of the 2 missile components to another gluon computer for initiative 13. I don't believe you can even theoretically match this initiative with any other ship type.

Edit: Actually, a cruiser with hyper grid source, 3 tachyon drives and gluon computer will also get initiative 13, but this can be countered with tachyon sources and 3 tachyon drives in the dreadnought.


This is true. But if dreadnaught went extreme initiative (with 2 fusion sources, 2 tachyon drives, 2 gluon comp, 2 plasma missile), they only have 4 missiles each per dread, a total of 8 hits if no 1's are rolled. If we combine your example with the one he gave above, they would still NOT kill 4 basic cruisers and 4 basic starbases, w/ starbases taking two hits a piece. Adding missiles to these ships without covering hull yields the same results, with the dread's taking 1 hit each to fall.

A single additional hull on a cruiser makes them take two hits as well, not to mention any improved hull upgrades to either cruiser or starbase.

Obviously every build will have a counter. But my point was that the example he gave was not exactly a sure win with all things being equal.

If he meant more missiles (less initiative), then the missile cruisers and missile starbases would fire first killing the dreads. If he meant extreme initiative missile dreads (4 upgrade actions and 4 research actions, 1 build action), he would still lose, and a modest upgrade of 1 hull, or 2 improved hull (1 upgrade action, 1 research action, 4 build actions) on cruisers makes the dreadnaughts EVEN MORE SO dead in the water, with minimal losses on the cruiser/starbase side.


Well, in the end the player who gets the last upgrade action will win.


Agreed. It is difficult to compare builds because of this, there is always a counter. Comparing with all things being equal, runs into its own problems, since the game is rarely played that way (someone will always go last), but it's an attempt to do so without having someone say, "but upgrading so-and-so counters this...etc"
 
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Daniel Hammond
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dyepbr wrote:


Because I can pin 3 dreads with 3 cruisers, and still have 2 cruisers to neutron raid 2 separate hexes, which could be a 12 point swing if hexes are 3 VP each. (material cost is difference of 1).


Exactly the same situation as 2 Dreads and 4 cruisers, it also assumes you can enter 2 of my hexes and that your cruisers will be able to defeat my defenders. Which often also comes down to builds. It is hard to build a fleet to slug it out with an antimatter fleet that can also beat a missile fleet.

The more big ships you have the more it will benefit those with large materials and more actions. Best attack a non-human can make now with 2 actions is 2 Dreadnoughts and 2 Cruisers, changing it to 3 Dreadnoughts and 1 Cruiser is not an inconsequential shift in offensive power, but what is the defensive counter-balance? Same number of Starbases and more means the need for more actions and materials to build more...

Try it out and see how it goes, I would be interested to know. After 35 games of Eclipse I have seen some surprising things happen, but all in all I think the balance is EXCELLENT.
 
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