Now I never bothered playing anything other then Rebel, but from what I hear is guns getting under Empire ships shields is a big problem compounded by the size of there ships, why not just make there shields unable to pass, or atleast guns unable to get underneath the shields. It could unbalance things, I don’t know but its worth looking in to. Besides the primary shield killing weapons Cruiser Laser will destroy anything anyways.
Since the Empire is supposed to be ancient, etc, I think that they need a major overhaul.
One, I think I’d either give them an antimatter powerplant (unlocked, the size of a large PP, and makes more power than any ship could use—1 slot filled, and any empire ship has infinite power.
Two, I’d then make some empire special stuff that uses all that power. Big drives. Powerful, long range weapons. Perhaps an antimatter missile/torpedo (unstable, easy to hit, huge damage).
Three, since they don’t use armor, but shields, they need special shields. I made some mod shields that have low resistance and shield points, but virtually real-time regeneration. This requires them to be overwhelmed to have the shields drop.
One thing that is CRITICAL to making the races more different is the ability to UNrestrict modules instead of restrict them. unrestrict = list of races. Any race not on that list is restricted. Then the Empire, say, is excluded from using the shields at large, armor, etc, and MUST use only Empire stuff. This would be VERY useful.
Right now, since mods cannot alter stock files (you can, easily with JSGME, actually), you can make a cool new race, but any player can wreck all the balance of race-specific weapons by just building the ship with weapons that any race can use.
I would agree that the Empire is probably in the most need of an overhaul. I haven’t managed to hit on any real play style that makes them unique - while there is the obvious fact that the Empire is more module-heavy (rather than hardpoint-heavy) than most of the other races, I have had trouble using all those module slots to good effect (partially due to the inherent difficulties in making armor useful, which are addressed in so many other threads throughout the forum that I’ll just leave that there).
I would argue that a certain base set of modules do make sense to leave them non-race-specific. I think it’s reasonable to assume that any spacefaring, warmongering race such as the five we all know and love would have come up with roughly equivalent technologies at a basic level in various areas:
But beyond the basic tech, which would be easily available at your corner Spaceship Supply Store, each race could have developed their own variations on the theme:
A shield that fighters cannot pass through, but which takes forever to recharge once it falls.
A scrambler beam that causes missiles to retarget on another nearby ship (friend or foe).
A disruptor capable of shorting out a vessel’s engines, leaving it unable to move under its own power for a few seconds.
A beam laser with twice the normal range but half the penetration and damage; doubles as a target painter.
A form of crystalline armor that slowly repairs itself.
A supercharged engine that can only provide thrust for a short time before it has to shut off and cool down, making the ship’s movement erratic.
The sky’s the limit for these kinds of variations. Of course, I’m sure there are limitations to what Cliff can coax the computer to do.
There’s a lot of things that hurt empire, but I don’t really think the bubble size is the main concern.
Just take into consideration their favored racial bonus: shields.
- Everyone is using high DPS weapons which incidentally are also high shield penetration. The proliferation of the overpowered tribe hitpoint sinks emphasize this further.
- Low DPS AP weapons, which shields are strong or even immune against, are further discouraged by the above factor. Ironically, a buff to armor would be an indirect buff to the Empire as fleets would have to diversify more.
- The primary defense feature of shields is recharge rate, making enemy fleet density a huge concern. Right now it’s impossible to properly order ships to avoid short range or clustered conflicts through any means but denying them an engine.
Toss in empire’s last-place fighter force and the fact that larger ships mean easier targets, and it’s not hard to see why they’re unpopular.
I think a way better mechanic would be giving Empire shield overlap.
Thus a weakness can also be a strength. The shield will act more like a moving barrier, that isnt ship specific. So the farthest out shield will get hit first, etc.
So now their big size allows them overlap easier, with the downside of 1 exploding, then they all follow.
Any fighters inside the shields have to make sure their shots dont hit another ruisers shields first.
Of course, this could be quite overpowered, but maybe make it an expensive module, of limted strangth, or take away the other empire bonus.