Why are "keep moving" and "escort" incompatable?

Isn’t that what fighters can technically do? Or is there an AI limitation?

I’m trying to make an evasive fleet and it would certainly help to be able to keep a leash on my deployment.

That, and a way to adjust minimum range independent of maximum range, but I know others have requested that.

I think what you need to do is keep the target of the escort moving. The escort itself will follow it’s target, but if the target stops still, the escort will need to stop too.

When the game talks about “moving” they mean the actual map cell to cell movement, rather than the idle swarming movement that the fighters have even when they’re not going anywhere.

Trouble is, if the escorted ship dies, all your ships will then halt… When you wanted them moving around so they aren’t sitting ducks to low tracking weapons.

It would be better if the Escort / Formation orders simply took priority over ‘keep moving’, while the target of those orders is alive, rather than exclude the keep moving order.

And yeah, a minimum range setting independent of the maximum range setting is at the top of my wish list by absolutely MILES. But I think Cliffski already knows this, as this is about the bazillionth time I’ve posted asking for it :smiley:

For that matter, I’d like to be able to put “Keep Moving” down with “Formation”, with the implied meaning of “stay in formation until your leader is dead, then keep moving”.

But I agree that Keep Moving doesn’t seem contrary to Escort in any way. That should just mean “stay within the set escort range, but keep moving (like fighters already do).”

This is one of my pet pieves.

Has anyone heard of anything that is going to be done about this?

My dream is that we will be able to make a formation of ships that:

A. Stays in formation when the leader dies
B. Or, as an option, breaks formation when the leader does
C. Keeps moving when the leader dies.

Honestly, what I want from the Formation order is SO different from what it does that I essentially had to stop using it. When I think “stay in this formation”, I mean that wherever I had put the selected ships relative to each other, I want to build a giant grid of I-beams locking them in place. The concept of a “leader” is meaningless (though I understand it’s needed for AI), I just want the ships to stay in the exact grid in which I placed them, so that (for example) I can have the long-range weapons in the back, the mid-range weapons in the middle, and short range weapons on the vanguard, and arrange them so that if you come in range of one ship, you come in range of all of the back rows as well. Yes, this would need some little AI tweaking (you want the fleet to continue advancing beyond the bare minimum range or else only one column of ships might be firing), and ideally the whole thing would pivot to face enemies, but rigidity is what I want.

Wishful thinking aside, the current “formation” command does horrible things to your AI. The “lead” ship springs forward to make sure that all enemies focus fire on it before the other ships (which started parallel to it) get in range to help out, and your whole fleet ends up in a horrible V-shaped duck-shoot. I tried several times to counteract this effect by starting the lead ship back further, or making it slower, before I realized that it’s just the way the behavior works there’s no way around it.

I would love to have a command that would actually maintain my tight layered or reverse-v formations. I think it would help my ability to field specialized ships, like carefully located anti-fighter or point-defense frigates (between my many cruisers).

Also, formations should ROTATE when the lead ship does. If the lead ship turns from east to south, the ship that was pegged as west of the lead ship should then move north of it (instead of staying west of it)

I agree. The workaround I use is to either have the ‘lead’ ship in the back of the formation (a good ship for this role would be your carrier, if you use one, which wants to lag a bit behind the rest of the fleet,) or to have the fleet ‘tugged’ into place by a very cheap, very fragile, ship in the front of the formation, so right as battle engages the formation ‘breaks’ and your ships can find the ranges they want.

That would be ideal; again, think of linking all the ships together with a giant grid of I-beam girders, and that’s what I want from a formation.

Could the Keep Moving order be superseded by a Formation or Escort order until the escorted vessel is destroyed
so the ship will “keep moving” rather than sit like a lost puppy and get plasma spammed?