Fighter Camouflage Shield mods


#1

Hi all,

I’ve being doing some rough experiments by modding the cruiser camouflage shield to fit fighters. I got the idea a scene from the Star Blazers series where the good guys main cruiser was attacked by waves of Gamilon torpedo bombers using camo shields to get within firing range.
So far it hasn’t worked - I tried it on both squads and individual fighters. They simply don’t cloak.
Can anyone think of a reason that it won’t work - and what I can do to make it work?

Thank you in advance.


#2

Actually it does work - you just have to look very closely.
My next question is:

What parameters do I adjust to alter the cloaking and decloaking time?
I’ve had a go but there doesn’t seem to be much difference.

Thanks.


#3

The “cloaking/decloacking” time is hardcodded


#4

Actually, you can adjust the cloaking time, but it’s a bit indirect. Here are the important variables (duplicated from the GSB Modding 101 Guide at the top of this forum):

cloak_consumptionrate - How quickly the cloak drains the power cloak_rechargerate - how quickly the cloak regains power max_cloak_power - maximum power capacity of the cloak

On the vanilla Camouflage Shield, the first two variables are the same. This means it takes the cloak just as long to charge up as it does to run out of power - the ship will be cloaked half the time (providing it doesn’t decloak to shoot at people). You can use these to adjust the proportion of the time that the cloak will be on - high recharge/low consumption will be cloaked longer than visible, low recharge/high consumption the opposite.

The third variable affects how much power the cloak has - the larger this number, the longer the period of recharge/cloak. I believe that a cloak will enter the battlefield completely discharged, so if you make this number high but don’t increase the recharge rate appropriately, it will be a long time before your cloaking device kicks in.


#5

Camouflage shields start the battle with a random amount of energy in the cloak - you can have a ship cloak almost immediately after the battle begins, and you can also have one that doesn’t cloak until it has almost crossed all the way to the enemy fleet. You can easily check this by making a handful of cheap cruisers with cloaking devices and dropping them in any battle to see when everything cloaks - they will not usually all cloak at the same time. I don’t know whether fighter cloaks will work on a per-fighter or a per-squadron basis for timing, though I suspect it will be per-fighter.

Note that the cloaking effect appears to cause the hit chance for a cloaked vessel to be one fourth the hit chance of the same vessel when it is not cloaked. Since the minimum hit chance is 2% regardless of cloaking, your fighters might not gain much benefit if they are relatively fast (fighter speed close to or above the tracking speed of enemy weapons). Also note that it appears that the cloak is not considered to be in effect until the cloaking animation finishes playing, and ends when the decloaking animation begins to play.

It might also hurt the effectiveness of your fighters if you don’t provide a weapon capable of firing while the cloak is in effect.


#6

thank you for your input Gentlemen.
My idea is to have a squad of camouflage torpedo bombers - they are generally slow and I want to get at least a few within range without the usual massacre of them.

After some basic testing, I can confirm that fighters in a squad will cloak on an individual basis, not as a group.
I also found that when using them with a carrier, they will cloak when returning to and leaving the carrier.

Something else I found strange (and it may not be due to camouflage), is that when there were about six to seven fighter being repaired in the bays, they would never come out, so the battle finished with several fighters sitting on a carrier. If one more joined, making seven or eight being repaired, this one would be repaired and returned to battle. Very odd, and a waste of fighters if they are going to sit there.


#7

One more thing about cloaks that you might find useful - if you provide a ship with a ‘permanent’ cloak (i.e., cloak_consumptionrate = 0), the ship will engage the cloak as long as two conditions are satisfied:

  1. The ship is not currently able to fire its weapons at an enemy (no target in range, or under the effect of EMPs, or weapons disabled).
  2. The cloaking device is fully charged.

Note that it appears that, at least for beam weapons, ‘fire_while_camoflaged = 1’ weapons still cause the ship to decloak before (or maybe during) the firing sequence.


#8

I have tested bullet, beam and missile weapons. All force a decloak as they fire (though firing does begin at the same time as the decloaking). I believe Cliff was planning to have a look at it following the release of the Outcasts.