New Requirement: Engines?

The real thing we should be asking here is, why are immobile fleets such a big problem that you want to make engines a requirement. The fact of the matter is, immobile fleets are more effective than mobile fleets at the current state of the game. To illustrate this point, I took my existing Survival fleet and simply removed the engines and added an extra repair module and an extra armor module in their places. My previous high score was around 48,000 points and I hit 125,000 before my first FRIGATE exploded. After that things went downhill and I lost around 138,000.

I agree with you, Midgard, we should be asking why they are a problem, rather than just saying it’s “unfair”.

It’s not that going without engines is somehow cheating, but it can make the game drag on terribly, and even lead to stalemates. Consider the problem we’re seeing in tournaments: if one guy has no engines, the other guy has to have engines or the game can’t be played. If that’s the case, then, unless the guy who has engines was planning on using engines in his strategy, he has now been put at a disadvantage, because he has to lose (at least) one module for the engine.

I think we can work around it other ways, besides just making some strict requirement. I like the idea someone else suggested where every ship has some miminal amount of engines built in. That way, we never hit stalemates, but people can still add engines if they want them. As long as the default engines are slow enough that they don’t make any weapons ineffective, there’s still strategy in building a fast ship. Or maybe thrust is tied into something else, like power, that you can’t otherwise do without (I don’t agree with this idea, because it has several limitations, but it’s still an option).

Whatever the case, we definitely run into a problem if everybody goes without engines, which – given the current tradeoffs with engines – is usually the better choice. I don’t think we have to punish people for choosing to not specifically use engines, but we do need a way to avoid the problems that occur if nobody uses engines.

How about engines being a requirement on some ships, and not allowed on others?

That way, you’ll know at the deployment setup stage whether you’re up against mobile or immobile targets. Personally, I find it’s pretty easy to take advantage of ‘turret’ weaknesses. It would be nice to know if you’re up against turrets in the first place though. I would use the ‘weapons platform’ type ships for certain challenges and for survival mode, where IMO it adds something to have to consider position as well as ship loadout in order to score high. Adding engines makes positioning almost irrelevant.

I would also like to see an engine output boost. I have several fast cruiser designs, and I find they are weaker than they should be. They are already underarmed, so it would be good if they could make up for it somehow. If it was half as likely for, say, light plasma to hit a ship with 6 or more supercharged engines, even a large cruiser, then there would be a stronger incentive to include engines regularly.

I finally got my build to run through without crashing. I took 4th place just shy of 500,000 points. No engines. With some small adjustments I could easily go farther. The really big advantage of not moving is that you never put your weak part foreward. The enemy strikes you the same way each time the same wave comes up. I think with a few adjustments i could take first place. I’d be extremely surprised if Erlandr uses engines in his survival build.

I’m planning on adding a different survival scenario at some stage that demands engines, so if you want to compete only with engine-capable ships, that will eb the scenario for you :smiley:

How did survival get dragged into this??

People on this forum need to stay on subject and the subject here is:

“It’s useless to field engines, and that sucks”

This is the subject at hand, nothing more, nothing less, please stay on-topic.

Engines are not useless. It is just that as of this moment, the compensation for running engines does not equal the compensation for not running engines. This could be easily fixed by giving a ‘to hit bonus’ on engineless ships. There should be anyway. A ship dead in the water is infinitely easier to hit than one going a full speed. As to what cliffski said, a number of the scenarios now require engines. It may be useless to field them, but in three of the ten scenarios, you have to now.

Why not make engines a kind of enhancer?

What I mean is, ships fully utilizing engines to move faster should be more difficult to hit with missiles, and very difficult to hit with plasmas. If, however, the ships with engines go to a standstill, they should provide a small bonus to shield and weapon recharge rates, the bonus being equivalent to the engine cost. This way, you can also have engines that provide a bigger boost to recharge rates, but are both more expensive (in terms of energy and money) and provide lower thrust, and engines that provide higher thrust at a lower cost.

This way, engine lacking fleets will still be viable, but will suffer more serious trade offs when being considered.

That’s not true. I field engines against every engineless deployment and beat them because no matter what, you can choose an attack position. There is no way to ideally lay out a pack of turrets that can avoid an engined fleet from focusing on a single target at a time. These ‘turret’ type designs become a bigger problem once they are mobile, because they can react to different attack angles and formations.

I don’t mind the ‘turret’ challenges, they’re very easy to beat. Almost all of them involve mass missile launchers (or plasma), heavily shielded and defended moving ships of my own approaching in such a way as to pick their numbers off 1 or 2 at a time.

Oh, I think I was clarifying my point that, by simply removing engines and adding repair parts I was able to go from 45,000 to crashing the game before first ship dying in like 3 iterations.

If you’re talking about survival, you’re right (though I got my 150k score with fast rebel cruisers - their speed made them immune to the plasma wave, and shields to everything else but fighters). Thing is, there’s more to the game than survival mode. A challenge fleet that sits there like a rock is going to get hammered pretty badly by a clever opponent that uses mobile forces.

I am aware of the corner-set-up-tactic because it is a given, but this wont work if some1 sets his bunker up in his corner.
If some1 sets up their corner bunker right, engines are useless, and that sucks.

Even space stations would need engines. Corrections to orbit, avoidance of large meteor impacts for instance. Just create a very slow, cheap engine, and add an order of “Remain Stationary”

I have not yet seen a corner-bunker that wasn’t easily crackable. The person setting up the bunker will always have 1-2 ships that can be picked off at a time. There isn’t a way around this.

Tell you what. Put together what you think is an uncrackable bunker challenge and send it to me. I’ll send you a deployment with engines that breaks it.

might take a while but i’ll see what i can do :slight_smile:

you can crack a corner bunker, but it requires a specialized fleet… a flexible challenge fleet will probably get itself killed.

I noticed that some of the regular missions now require that ships have engines, trouble is, putting the minimum engines on a cruiser doesnt really make much difference, it’s still pretty much just going to sit there. I’m thinking it would be better if you forced ships to actually have a minimum speed in order to enter some battles.

These guys are much more dangerous than engineless ships because they can reconfigure and bring all their weapons to bear. If they aren’t spending crew and power on a large engine, they have probably invested it in something else which would give them an edge. Erlandr has a challenge fleet up that use a virtual bunker that represents this well.

I don’t think it requires a specialized fleet. Any fleet with engines that has more firepower at maximum range than 1-2 of the bunker ships that is deployed at the same side (since bunkers have to be in a corner). This should be common even in balanced challenge fleets. I doubt any bunker challenges will stand up for long. It seems to be the cruisers that have engines but move very slowly are much more dangerous.