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Question about ship designs - 6/6/2014 7:30:42 PM   


Posts: 191
Joined: 2/11/2014
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I'd like to ask how some of you old hands design your escorts, frigates and cruisers within current size limitations. I know one answer to this is "Don't matter - I handle all my ships manually" but I am experimenting with having the AI handle some fleets since I find it useful that it deals with certain problems while I run my main fleets manually. So the AI wants me to build a certain number of ships to meet it's current requirements (it seems to factor in my manual ships in calculating how many it wants to order) and it wants so many escorts, frigates etc for what it has in mind.

Now the problem I've got is that when I design an escort I just can't help wanting to put another gun and another shield on it and soon enough I'm pushing my, say, 300 limit. But then what do I do about the frigates and destroyers and cruisers? They can't be much bigger, if at all.

So the question is do you deliberately seriously under-spec your escorts, slightly less so frigates etc so you end up with the four grades of ship like the AI is expecting, or do you just design a one-size fits all ship (i.e. the biggest possible) to be as kick-arse as possible and essentially copy it to all four classes?

I'm having a similar issue with freighters - if I redesign the small freighters with hyperdrives and all the necessary paraphernalia for that, they nearly come in at 300, so where do I go for the medium and large ones?
Post #: 1
RE: Question about ship designs - 6/6/2014 8:17:36 PM   


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Joined: 7/24/2010
Status: offline
I only built 2 types of ships for my fleet so that it's easier to manage since I like to manually design it myself. I don't want to worry about the other design since eventually these 2 ships will be maxed out in size anyways.

early on (size 230-400)
- a mix torpedoes and fighter bays
- keep speed around 28-32
- boarding capability

mid game (size around 500-650)
- more fighter bays
- add hyper deny
- shield around 10-12
- add troops
- repairbots

late game (size 1000+ - becomes like a carrier)
- high armor
- meridian shield
- add more troops
- other higher techs weapons

early on
- ion weapon
- keep speed around 28-32
- boarding capability
- troops

mid game (size around 500-650)
- add boarding capability
- add fighter bays
- more troops
- add hyperdeny
- shield around 10-12
- repairbots

late game (size 1000+ - becomes like a carrier)
- high armor
- meridian shield
- other higher techs weapons

I sometimes build some troop transports just to invade an independent but later in the game, they 2 other ship types I make cover what the troop transport does.

I try to match the speed of the frigate and destroyer so that when invading/attacking, they travel at the same speed.

(in reply to Gregorovitch55)
Post #: 2
RE: Question about ship designs - 6/6/2014 8:35:54 PM   

Posts: 9644
Joined: 10/20/2012
From: Utlima Thule
Status: offline
I'd tend to ignore the AI advice about numbers to be honest.

I've sort of come to the view that I have 3 different types of 'small' ships and 3 of larger ones.

I use the destroyer class to build a boring all rounder, its not great at anything but within the size limits I make it hard to kill, reasonably quick, reasonably well armed. I don't add boarding pods or fighter bays. So this in early-mid game is my workhorse ship and the core of my fleets.

I use the escort class to build a ship designed to raid. So it will have speed and limited protection but as much firepower. If I encounter a silver mist problem, I'll redesign this to ion weapons and use it to clear out that problem. Defense won't help you there, but firepower and speed might.

I use the frigate class to design a ship designed to capture. So speed, manouverability, decent defense, boarding pods and firepower (to capacity). This is great for grabbing valuable mines and capturing some pirate ships.

All tend to be at or near max size, so its not that that makes any difference. I just use the 3 classes to build for 3 roles that make sense to me.

Once I get the larger classes, I do specialist aircraft carriers (just that is how I think of), one designed for long range combat and one designed as more of an all rounder.

I swap weapons and bits as techs fire or enemies change, but the rough principles stand.

Over time I turn more fleets over to the AI to defend certain sectors but always keep some powerful general fleets and the more specialist ones under my control.


(in reply to Gregorovitch55)
Post #: 3
RE: Question about ship designs - 6/6/2014 9:28:43 PM   

Posts: 1040
Joined: 9/12/2011
Status: offline
With regard to freighters the AI treats them as all the same, so I just use one design and copy it across to the other two designations.

I wish that it were different and the AI would send large freighters on bulk runs to gas mines and small freighters on speedy missions for critical resources needed in smaller amounts but it doesn't. If it ever does make the distinction then it will be worth observing how it uses the roles differently and then tailoring the different 'size' designs to fit that behaviour.

I never let the AI control my fleets but I would adopt the same approach for military controlled by AI. From vague memory the escorts are used mainly for escorting and maybe a bit for patrols. Frigates are used for escorting, patrols and sometimes to bulk out proper (attack) fleets. Destroyers and up are generally used in fleets for attacking. If you site search under 'escorts' and 'frigates' there are a couple of older threads which say something somewhat less vague, I think...

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 4
RE: Question about ship designs - 6/6/2014 11:20:23 PM   


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Joined: 5/30/2014
Status: offline
I keep my Planetary Defense forces small and cheap. Escorts with size of 230 in the early game.

My assault teams, invasion forces are all maxed at whatever size i can.

Rationale: my static defenses just need to be sufficient to hold off an enemy for a few minutes while a heavy fleet warps in, and in the meantime they mostly sit around doing nothing but costing me money, so i make them durable and inexpensive to maintain.

(in reply to feelotraveller)
Post #: 5
RE: Question about ship designs - 6/7/2014 11:30:41 PM   


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Joined: 5/7/2013
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This is what I've been playing with lately;

Troop transport: the auto design.

Escort: I don't really bother with designing. I just use the auto designed one and have them set on auto. They escort my freighters and pick off the enemy civilian ships in my territory.

Frigates: I don't really use except as a small strike force to take out enemy mining stations, research, construction ships etc. Usually a suicide mission so I make them 250 - 300 sized, cheap. Fast activating hyperdrives, high speed, high acceleration and energy collectors.

Destroyers: Around 300 sized. Most of my defensive fleet.

Cruiser: 400 - 500 size. Just a balance of weapons and shields. The weapons are more heavily geared towards energy beam/phaser weapons. Fast and agile. Makes up 75% of my main attack fleets.

Light Carrier: 500 size. 1/10 of my defensive fleet (9/10 is my destroyers). Has at least a fighter bay and hyper deny.

Carrier: Max size. Lots of fighter bays. Weapons are leaned more towards missiles/torpedoes. They shoot from a distance while cruisers in the fleet and its fighters attack.

Capital ship: Max size. Everything except for fighter bays.

Capital command ship: Max size. Heavy armour and shields. My fleet admirals or ships captains are on this ship. Most of it is geared towards special attack weapons or imparting fleet bonuses. Area, hyperdeny, assault pods, tractor beams etc.

I have 4 fleet compositions. defensive fleets about a dozen, strike forces (6 or 4 frigates), troop fleets (troop transports accompanied by 4 destroyers) and a handful of main attack fleets.

(in reply to Hassell)
Post #: 6
RE: Question about ship designs - 6/8/2014 12:00:31 AM   


Posts: 191
Joined: 2/11/2014
Status: offline
So many ideas - thanks everyone! Keep 'em coming, I'm sure other new players like me will find lot's of ideas to try out from this.

(in reply to kaysea)
Post #: 7
RE: Question about ship designs - 6/8/2014 9:34:14 AM   


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Joined: 6/7/2014
Status: offline
I usually design a slow, heavy shielded/armored kind of ship, with decent amount of weapons, set on point blank. Another one is a long range, faster, more lightly defended ship, set on stand off. The rest is more standart kind of ships: carrier (I use that one as command ship for admirals,...), quite heavily armored, long range weapons and fighter bays on stand off as well, troop transport,...

I only have 1 small type of vessels, the escort, that I usually don't include in fleets, left in automation.

(in reply to Gregorovitch55)
Post #: 8
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