Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
Introduction:

In group space combat, especially space PvP, ships form a 'ball' due to the limited range (5km) of important support abilities. This necessarily constrains teams to fall back to the 'ball' for support regardless of how much weaving or spread formations they employ.

To introduce more variety and dynamics to space combat, I propose introducing minimum ranges for certain support abilities, as well as magnitude scaling with range. These new ranges should extend out of weapons range to encourage 'picket' combat and larger ship formations overall.

===

Solution:
  • Extend Shields

    - no min range, retain existing max range of 5km
    - scale magnitude up with proximity, down with range
  • Hazard Emitters

    - set min range to 6km, max range to 12km
    - scale magnitude down with proximity, up with range
  • Tactical, Engineering, Science Team

    - no min range, set max range to 3km (suggested by Dalnar)
    - if target is not source, lower source ship's crew briefly (duration of the buff)
    - change from instant effect to heal-over-time, scale HoT speed/magnitude up with proximity, down with range
  • Transfer Shield Strength

    - set min range to 6km, max range to 12km
    - scale magnitude down with proximity, up with range

===

Summary:

By enforcing minimum ranges for certain necessary support abilities, groups would necessarily need to maintain more dynamic formations. Furthermore, extending the ranges beyond weapons range enables picket lines and encourages more dynamic combat tactics and strategy.

===

Disclaimer:

This proposal necessarily requires a balanced DPS:EHP scale, which currently does not exist in-game at the time of this post/edit. So this proposal is shelved, or otherwise considered low-priority, until such scaling becomes more balanced.

===

Feedback appreciated.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
03-05-2010, 05:37 AM
Ugh, i would actualy like to see the range of away team abilties (sci,eng,tac) lowered
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
03-05-2010, 05:43 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalnar
Ugh, i would actualy like to see the range of away team abilties (sci,eng,tac) lowered
Done, added to the list. Feel free to propose some numbers.

Thanks for the feedback.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
03-05-2010, 05:47 AM
2km at maximum, should drop shield facing, which does face the recipient.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
03-05-2010, 05:54 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalnar
2km at maximum, should drop shield facing, which does face the recipient.
I considered the shield drop, but then it would also have to drop the target's shields. Also, we have seen throughout Star Trek the ability of good engineers to beam through shields. We can also assume that allies know each other's shield frequencies and can simply beam through that.

Instead of dropping shields, I propose lowering source crew levels, if the target is different than the source, for the duration of the buff.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
03-05-2010, 05:56 AM
Well thats realy small issue. The greatest issue with teams for me, is that they act as instant heals. By logic, they should be HoTs, as it takes time to repair something.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
03-05-2010, 06:02 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalnar
Well thats realy small issue. The greatest issue with teams for me, is that they act as instant heals. By logic, they should be HoTs, as it takes time to repair something.
Agreed. How about, max range 3km, HoT time/magnitude scaled up with proximity, down with range? Also lowers source crew level.


EDIT: Decided to set max range to 3km, to avoid having 5 be the 'default'.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
03-16-2010, 10:48 AM
I have a better way to break up the ball: make AoE abilities a bigger threat.

Who here cares if they see a torpedo spread launched their way? Tyken's rift, when not tractored? Scatter volley, or worse, fire at will?

So long as AoE abilities are not only suboptimal in that your targets are rarely going to be similarly vulnerable to the same blanket attack (torpedo spread suffers the most from this), but also in that they have significantly less impact than a single-target equivalent, nobody will be wary of what should be counters to overly tight formations.

In addition, several space AoE abilities are decidedly underwhelming in the "area" part of area of effect. Increases to their radii of effect would also significantly help.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
03-16-2010, 10:57 AM
My solution for the ball is to buff up MES a bit. Make it have slightly worse stealth than cloak at 50 aux power.

Cloak is still superior as more power can be added to make it stronger where MES depends on gear and not power.

It would make +sensor builds for Klingons and Feds more viable again instead of being CC/Healer focused.

It would allow Fed ships (Escors and Sci in particular) to hide from the surprise alpha. Crusiers would be the first target to "tank" as they were intended.

It would give a reason to Klingon Sci captains to do something other than be VM boats.

Back just before the MES nerf in beta more Feds were using MES and the ball was disappearing in a lot of my games... You would see 1 or 2 Fed Crusiers and everyone else was stealthed. It was fun.

But that is just my opinion.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
03-16-2010, 01:35 PM
Regarding both AOE and MES...

After their durations expire, ships (whether stealthed or visible) must still return to < 5km range for all important support abilities. AOE is a deterrent, while MES is merely another tool to facilitate movement between ranges.

Changing min and max ranges of support abilities inherently and permanently destroys the 'ball' as a viable tactic, whereas AOE, no matter how buffed, only temporarily destroys the 'ball'. In other words, the 'ball' is still possible (and even more needed) if AOE is buffed, whereas the 'ball' is simply not possible if min and max ranges of support abilities are changed.

Thanks for the feedback.
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