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RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/13/2011 4:12:22 AM   
Gelatinous Cube


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quote:

ORIGINAL: balto

My tip #1 was to research the Construction Size. Tip #2 is to add on Fuel tanks to EVERYTHING. They all need more Fuel and it does not take much space. That is all I got.., please play around with Design, I can tell you are super smart so it would be interesting to see what you come up with.


lol, not that smart. Just too much free time! Is there any reason at all to create different classes of ships, then? Or are the Frigate/Destroyer/Cruiser/Capital Ship classes all kind of silly once you start designing your own ships?

Fuel tank tip is a good one. I build a lot of spread out fleets and bases, and with AI-Design fuel is always a problem in the beginning.

Also, I tend to play on Very Expensive research. It could be well into the 2800s before I get capital ships. Any good tips for some mainstay early-game (but not too early-game) designs?

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Post #: 31
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/13/2011 4:28:52 AM   
balto

 

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Great questions for the early game, and very easy to answer.

As you state, the different classes means NOTHING when you design your own.

When you design your own, the key is to have your military ships at the MAX size. Step #1, FUEL UP to 1000 right away. Step #2, as stated, no matter what you tack on or remove, ALWAYS have excess energy. Step #3, write down the stock Cruise and Sprint speeds and your Turning ratios for your Explorer and your Frigate. Tell yourself that you will NEVER go beneath that speed or turning for all of your military and Explorers. So as you tack on weapons and shields, etc.., your Cruise and Sprint will drop as will your turning speed.., you need to tack on some engines and vectors to make sure they do not become slow pokes. So at first, this will be a click and unclick balance situation.

This leaves you with what you want to do with weapons, shields, and armor. You do not have big ships yet, so this mix is up to you. I suggest you not sacrifice SHIELDS/ARMOR for more weapons. Weapons will come with research and increased size later on, in the early game, protect what you have.

I too play with VERY EXPENSIVE RESEARCH. I can see by your shields that you like the XENOX that are good researchers. Try Quememo if you like research.



< Message edited by balto -- 12/13/2011 4:31:27 AM >

(in reply to Gelatinous Cube)
Post #: 32
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/13/2011 4:49:40 AM   
Gelatinous Cube


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Good tips! I agree on defense over offense for the early game. It is much easier to repair a slightly damaged ship frequently than to repair a seriously messed up ship, or have to rebuild all the time.

Might have to add some custom designs to the Polish Empire's arsenal!

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Post #: 33
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/13/2011 7:02:58 AM   
jpwrunyan


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To follow up on what you said, in the early game would it be better to have 1 reactor on your ships and use the space for def/off or have two reactors for speed? Particularly thinking about escorts and frigates here where 1 reactor can easily power my weapons. And shields/armor wont need more than 1 reactor either at starting level amirite?
So again, to two reactor or to one reactor, that is the question.

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Post #: 34
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/13/2011 9:54:04 PM   
Keston


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Decide what the ship needs to do and how hard it needs to shoot and how fast it has to go and put in the necessary reactors so that it has energy to either both move and shoot fully or achieve some compromise between those. Mixing long range missiles for reach and short-range weapons for firepower is one way to deal with an energy shortage since the ship will swtich from one to the other depending on range, but it may also be slowed down by drawing energy from movement. Of course if the orders dont' require keeping distance, just closing and shooting, there may be a lot less need for maneuver.

For example, well into the game, I do escorts with one fission reactor and 4 thrusters, with a Firestorm for short and medium-range hitting power and a missile to reach out and prod pirates and the like. Firepower-Size-Speed is 62-123-21/39 but armor and shields are minimal and cruise range is not long. I sometimes assign one to patrol a mining base or escort a ship, but generally these are automated. The point is the escort can get there with significant hitting power, and if it is beaten up then the civilian target may get away.

Frigates cost twice as much, with FSS of 98-231-23/41 and 2 missiles plus a firestorm and ion cannon at short range. They have one engine, with 62 excess energy that is not enough to operate the maximum weapons energy of 69 and sprint speed at 48 energy at the same time. However, a third of that energy usage is the specialized ion cannon, so they can cruise and shoot either the missiles or the firestorm at the same time. Forthcoming Fission mprovements will generate more power. Giving them two reactors would let them move fast and shoot freely but for normally undemanding duty would make them Caslon gas guzzlers, and currently but they have the speed to catch or escape from most anything, so are suitable for independent operations. Defense is much better than the escorts - 5 armor and 540 shields, and they have added fuel cells for range.

Neither escorts nor frigates have enough power to go to full hyper speed right now, but neither do the civilian ships they may escort.

Destroyers naturally go up to 2 reactors at FSS of 213-309-19/35 with enough energy to cruise and use weapons fully and enough energy to maximize their hyper speed. Tactically they forego missiles for Firestorms and some extras and have better defenses as well as repair bots. Troop compartments? No - I like specialized assault transports with enough divisions to matter.

Cruiser FSS is 259-400-16/30 with 2 reactors allowing full speed hyper. Their on-board weapons are intended to slug it out, not shoot and sprint, so the 2 reactors are enough. The firepower is as much as the reactors can manage, so I use the remaining space to include a size 50 4-fighter bay to give them some reach (fighters drain only a little static energy). The Cruisers also have targeting and countermeasures as well as 900 shields and the spare space stuffed with around 10 armor and redundant repair bots in case one goes down.

The Cruiser's 16/30 is faster than most capital ships (such as recovered derelicts) will be, but since the ships can all keep pace in hyper it is OK in the battle for the caps to engage the main targets and the cruisers maneuver more. Some of the ancient heavy warships can't sustain fire of all their weapons even without any energy for maneuver.

I also have an EW cruiser FFS 0-400-16/30 and 3 reactors feeding a giant long-range scanner and fleet countermeasures as well as extra thrust vectors for maneuver to keep it out of close combat. This provides helpful reconnaissance more than worth the loss of combat power. It is also a suitable command cruiser, keeping the commander out of the close fight (the biggest ships tend to be ready targets).

Hope this is of interest.

(in reply to jpwrunyan)
Post #: 35
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 6:35:38 AM   
jpwrunyan


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Yes, that was by far the most interesting post in the thread. Wish I could bump it up. Lots to think about. Currently I have been double reactoring everything and putting on extra fuel cells. Even my civillian freighters. I keep thinking I will just build more gas stations. I put two extractors on them instead of one. For escorts and frigates I have done the same. I have preferred missiles for harrassing pirates. But these designs waste a lot of power just for the sake of max hyperspace speed.

(in reply to Keston)
Post #: 36
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 7:06:05 AM   
feelotraveller


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I generally use two reactors on everything at the start. I'll use one only if I can get max hyperspeed + other requirements. I don't get the comments about increased fuel usage. If it is for weapons I want them firing. For travel you use the same amount of fuel to travel the same distance - you just do it faster. I want my ships traveling (hyperspace) fast - military to engage targets, civilians to deliver their payloads. Greater per time fuel usage but greater amount of resources delivered. The only ships I ever think about using a single reactor for are escorts assigned to single system duty, but even here in most systems they will hyperspace to different locations. I've yet to encounter a situation with early tech reactors where I have actually designed a ship with only one.

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Post #: 37
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 8:01:02 AM   
Webbco


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quote:

ORIGINAL: balto
And if you are going to start designing your own ships, trust me, just have only one or two designs. Anymore and you will go insane. I have two types that I keep at the max size. I could really have just one. Clearly, this one (or two) military designs are updated frequently and thus are the bad asses of the universe.


This I totally understand. From the beginning I've tried my hand at manually designing my military ships, explorers and spaceports and usually leave the rest on automated design.

For Destroyers and Cruisers, I tend to have 3 variations:
A = Assault
B = Long range/Bombarder
C = Command


Assault designs are standard warships that's primary weapons are blasters with a few phasers/rail guns on the Cruisers.

Bombarders, as the name suggests, have heavy railguns and torpedoes and maybe bombardment weapons (depending on how sinister I feel ). They may also have a HyperDeny device.

Command vessels
have a long range scanner, fleet countermeasures and targetting + fleet shield recharge later in the game. Primary weapons tend to be phasers and railguns.

This all sounds lovely...but when the time comes to retrofit......

The 2 major frustrations are that:
1) I have to click "Copy as New" on a previous design in the design screen and NOT "Upgrade" in order that the rough template of my designs are kept (e.g. If I clicked Upgrade on a ship with phasers and railguns and no blasters, the AI would change them to the more powerful blasters - not necessarily what I want).

2) I have to individually right click on each ship in each fleet to order them to retrofit to their specific new design

E.g. Go to 1st Fleet -> click on first ship in the selection panel -> right click on (for example) "Apulon A Mk2" in the main screen -> select "retrofit to Apulon A Mk3" -> repeat for every ship in 1st fleet -> move on to 2nd fleet

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Post #: 38
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 8:02:29 AM   
Webbco


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Webbco


quote:

ORIGINAL: balto
And if you are going to start designing your own ships, trust me, just have only one or two designs. Anymore and you will go insane. I have two types that I keep at the max size. I could really have just one. Clearly, this one (or two) military designs are updated frequently and thus are the bad asses of the universe.


This I totally understand. From the beginning I've tried my hand at manually designing my military ships, explorers and spaceports and usually leave the rest on automated design.

For Destroyers and Cruisers, I tend to have 3 variations:
A = Assault
B = Long range/Bombarder
C = Command


Assault designs are standard warships that's primary weapons are blasters with a few phasers/rail guns on the Cruisers.

Bombarders, as the name suggests, have heavy railguns and torpedoes and maybe bombardment weapons (depending on how sinister I feel ). They may also have a HyperDeny device.

Command vessels
have a long range scanner, fleet countermeasures and targetting + fleet shield recharge later in the game. Primary weapons tend to be phasers and railguns.

This all sounds lovely...but when the time comes to retrofit......

The 2 major frustrations are that:
1) I have to click "Copy as New" on a previous design in the design screen and NOT "Upgrade" in order that the rough template of my designs are kept (e.g. If I clicked Upgrade on a ship with phasers and railguns and no blasters, the AI would change them to the more powerful blasters - not necessarily what I want).

2) I have to individually right click on each ship in each fleet to order them to retrofit to their specific new design

E.g. Go to 1st Fleet -> click on first ship in the selection panel -> right click on (for example) "Apulon A Mk2" in the main screen -> select "retrofit to Apulon A Mk3" -> repeat for every ship in 1st fleet -> move on to 2nd fleet


Edit: would that be Bombarders, or Bombardeers??

(in reply to Webbco)
Post #: 39
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 8:07:36 AM   
Gelatinous Cube


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Bombardier, actually.

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Post #: 40
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 9:42:51 AM   
jpwrunyan


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quote:

ORIGINAL: feelotraveller

I generally use two reactors on everything at the start. I'll use one only if I can get max hyperspeed + other requirements. I don't get the comments about increased fuel usage. If it is for weapons I want them firing. For travel you use the same amount of fuel to travel the same distance - you just do it faster. I want my ships traveling (hyperspace) fast - military to engage targets, civilians to deliver their payloads. Greater per time fuel usage but greater amount of resources delivered. The only ships I ever think about using a single reactor for are escorts assigned to single system duty, but even here in most systems they will hyperspace to different locations. I've yet to encounter a situation with early tech reactors where I have actually designed a ship with only one.


Sounds like you and I are on the exact same page, paragraph, and word.
The only cost I can see so far is the idle fuel cost. Also build cost.
But still why did the designers and so many others opt for 1 reactor for the starting builds? I still feel like I am missing something.

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Post #: 41
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 10:07:39 AM   
Keston


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jpwrunyan
The only cost I can see so far is the idle fuel cost. Also build cost.
But still why did the designers and so many others opt for 1 reactor for the starting builds? I still feel like I am missing something.


How much is the idle fuel cost?

Reactors also add mass which requires more fuel to push, and more engines to achieve the same speed. If, for a ship of the same size, having more reactors does not cost significantly more fuel for the same distance traveled, I'd be more inclined to design differently frigates that may need that extra speed.


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Post #: 42
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 10:50:39 AM   
dejagore


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jpwrunyan


quote:

ORIGINAL: feelotraveller

I generally use two reactors on everything at the start. I'll use one only if I can get max hyperspeed + other requirements. I don't get the comments about increased fuel usage. If it is for weapons I want them firing. For travel you use the same amount of fuel to travel the same distance - you just do it faster. I want my ships traveling (hyperspace) fast - military to engage targets, civilians to deliver their payloads. Greater per time fuel usage but greater amount of resources delivered. The only ships I ever think about using a single reactor for are escorts assigned to single system duty, but even here in most systems they will hyperspace to different locations. I've yet to encounter a situation with early tech reactors where I have actually designed a ship with only one.


Sounds like you and I are on the exact same page, paragraph, and word.
The only cost I can see so far is the idle fuel cost. Also build cost.
But still why did the designers and so many others opt for 1 reactor for the starting builds? I still feel like I am missing something.



Same here. First thing I have done in my new game I started yesterday, was edit all the ship designs to reach full Hyperspeed (basically add one more reactor). Even if the fuel usage is slightly larger - it pays off ! Especially for the civilian ships.

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Post #: 43
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 1:47:54 PM   
MisterBenn

 

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I've been manually designing ships and coming to very similar conclusions. The Energy panel in the design screen should have a new item as Excess Energy alone doesn't seem to be enough. I would like another figure called something like "Time at peak output" which would be the amount of time your ship is able to activate all its systems (i.e. fire all weapons and use all other systems at the same time) before its full energy store drains down to nothing. This would be in seconds or would be "Indefinite" if the ships reactor output is more than enough when all energy consumers are in use at once. If like I did you put too way many guns on an early ship design then you will see the ship fire all weapons for perhaps 10 seconds and once the energy store is drained, the ship can only continue to fire at perhaps 10% speed until a break from combat gives it time to recharge. It's important to keep the peak energy output and reactor output in balance - a calculation I find myself working out mentally for all combat ships. It would be great to have that presented on the design screen.

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Post #: 44
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 2:06:30 PM   
Sylian


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Keston


quote:

ORIGINAL: jpwrunyan
The only cost I can see so far is the idle fuel cost. Also build cost.
But still why did the designers and so many others opt for 1 reactor for the starting builds? I still feel like I am missing something.


How much is the idle fuel cost?

Reactors also add mass which requires more fuel to push, and more engines to achieve the same speed. If, for a ship of the same size, having more reactors does not cost significantly more fuel for the same distance traveled, I'd be more inclined to design differently frigates that may need that extra speed.





Idle fuel cost depends on static energy useage. Reactors do not use static energy. So the idle fuel cost is not increased when adding reactors. Fuel consumtion per distance travelled in hyperspace is the same no matter if you use 1 or 2 reactors, as already was stated above. The bigger ship size for adding a reactor may require you to use more thrusters, which then will actually use up more energy / fuel. But the situation is the same if you fill up the space of one reactor with weapons / shields etc.
So the only reason to use only 1 reactor i can think of is to save resources and maintainance cost by keeping the ship small. On the other hand faster freighters may help with resource shortages early on. That is why i always add 2 reactors to all my ships at the beginning, even the civilian ones. (i design all ships and bases my self - i dont like AI designs)
On ship-roles: (this is purely my impression, not backed by solid evidence) i think the AI uses the ship role as a guideline on how to use that ship, if you automate them. Escorts will... well escort, frigates are on system patrol, and everything upwards is used for strike forces and fleets.



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Post #: 45
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 5:11:00 PM   
Sithuk

 

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+1 to having a left over energy summary after full sprint mode +shield recharge +full weapons firing are taken off reactor energy. Although my mental arithmetic has significantly improved since starting to use the DW ship design so there are benefits to the current system.

Elliot is re-designing the ship design screen for the next patch. I read it is due at the end of the month. I'm hoping he can get a beta out before Christmas.

quote:

ORIGINAL: MisterBenn

I've been manually designing ships and coming to very similar conclusions. The Energy panel in the design screen should have a new item as Excess Energy alone doesn't seem to be enough. I would like another figure called something like "Time at peak output" which would be the amount of time your ship is able to activate all its systems (i.e. fire all weapons and use all other systems at the same time) before its full energy store drains down to nothing. This would be in seconds or would be "Indefinite" if the ships reactor output is more than enough when all energy consumers are in use at once. If like I did you put too way many guns on an early ship design then you will see the ship fire all weapons for perhaps 10 seconds and once the energy store is drained, the ship can only continue to fire at perhaps 10% speed until a break from combat gives it time to recharge. It's important to keep the peak energy output and reactor output in balance - a calculation I find myself working out mentally for all combat ships. It would be great to have that presented on the design screen.




< Message edited by Sithuk -- 12/14/2011 5:13:17 PM >

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Post #: 46
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/14/2011 6:01:14 PM   
Keston


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That sounds like a good case for using a single reactors only for the smaller ships such as escorts. It sounds like the basic AI designs are being upgraded, so being smart doesn't seem like an exploit.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Sylian
On ship-roles: (this is purely my impression, not backed by solid evidence) i think the AI uses the ship role as a guideline on how to use that ship, if you automate them. Escorts will... well escort, frigates are on system patrol, and everything upwards is used for strike forces and fleets.


That was my assumption and unstudied impression. I hope a dev can confirm the general concepts of these roles.

I'd like a toggle to have the AI assign escorts to colony ships even if it's not all on Full Auto.

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Post #: 47
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/15/2011 2:52:48 AM   
jpwrunyan


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Sylian, thanks for the clarification. I am also now going double-reactor on everything. Sounds like the initial designs are just not that great. It's too bad because redesigning for each race is a pita. (I do this because loading a design loads the artwork as well and I want the artwork for each race)

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Post #: 48
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/15/2011 5:49:47 AM   
balto

 

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Webbco, you can do the Retrofits for everything really quick in the "Open Ships and Bases" window. When in this window, click on Military ships and click on their Subrole. Then use the SHIFT CLICK to highlight all of the ships you want retrofitted, and click on Retrofit.., boom, Done. Same thing for your SpacePorts and Constructors and Explorers, click on them in the "Open Ships and Bases," highlight using SHIFT CLICK, click RETROFIT, and bah-boom, they are done.

Also, I want to be clear that I have no Military Ships on AI as you do. I just have a Frigate and Destroyer. The rest I clck on Obsolete and never let them in the playing field. So I really do only have TWO Military ships.., well, and the Troop ships. I remove Troop Compartments from my two Military ships.

I am not saying this is a good thing, I am just saying what I do to un-clutter the field. My brain is not that good, so I need to dumb things down for myself.

Also (I doubt anyone cares), my two ships (which I always keep at the MAX SHIP SIZE) are identical except for one thing.., the Destroyers I stick in Fleets, and the Frigates are independents. For me, this allows me to decide how much to build to keep up my fleets and how many independents I want. I am not explaining this well, but like I siad, I am sure no one cares.., everyone has their own way and I am sure most are great.

< Message edited by balto -- 12/15/2011 5:50:22 AM >

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Post #: 49
RE: 1 vs 2 reactors on ships - 12/15/2011 9:31:55 AM   
Webbco


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Thanks balto, forgot that I could use that method to retrofit to custom designs from the drop down menu

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Post #: 50
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