[BUG, I think] Fighter engagement oddities

I fought a battle where my fighters had the setting to engage fighters at 100% and cruiser and frigate set to 0%. The enemy had some fighters that came towards my cap ships to engage while others were set to escort. At the beginning of the battle our fighters would meet in the middle and mine would fire at the incoming fighters as they passed but then continue on to engage the fighters set to escort. Shouldn’t they actively engage the first fighters they encounter? Also, since it might matter, what is the difference between setting an engagement priority to 0% and deleting it?

I think I could make a deployment that would demonstrate this fairly reliably if that will help.

I can confirm this.

Your fighters will always target enemy fighters who are flying escort FIRST, even if that means flying thru a wall of incoming fighters.

This needs to be changed because it means your fighters get dumped on, getting shot at by cap ships AND the fighters they were chasing, long before any of your cap ships can get in range to help.

I’ve seen this work both ways. In some battles my fighters will engage incoming enemies first. In some cases, moving my own fighter’s deployment location will change which fighter group they go after.

I suspect the real problem is that fighters squadrons pick out one target at the start of the battle and don’t reconsider their selection until they’ve engaged that target (and perhaps then only after they’ve destroyed it). I’m not sure if the chosen target is always the closest, but that could explain it (the free-flying enemy fighters may have been deployed in the rear of the enemy fleet). It would be best if they reconsidered their target occasionally, if they have not yet reached engagement range.