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Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2

 
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Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/28/2014 11:43:09 PM   
tjhkkr


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Is there any hope that Counter espionage be ratcheted down a bit more?
I sent my 3 very best agents in to steal a map -- all of them had very high espionage and concealment ratings, and they were all caught.
I would expect it to be a risky proposition, but espionage now seems like an endeavor that gets agents captured and/or killed.

< Message edited by tjhkkr -- 7/29/2014 7:46:13 PM >


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Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.
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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. - 7/28/2014 11:52:28 PM   
Nanaki

 

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Version number would be nice, as Counterespionage has been toned down in the 1.9.5.6 beta. Also, additional useful info might be counterespionage skill of any enemy counterespionage agents (You can use galaxy editor to view this) and espionage skills of your agents.

< Message edited by Nanaki -- 7/29/2014 12:53:44 AM >


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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. - 7/29/2014 7:50:52 AM   
feelotraveller


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Hey tjhkkr, I experienced something similar in my 1.9.5.5 game.

As far as I can tell it is because adjustments were made to counter-espionage to make it a worthwhile skill and activity. And that's fine but it has had the result in a huge increase in the captured/killed rate of spies. More tweaks have been made in the 2 versions of the 1.9.5.6 patch (which I haven't tried, hoping for the non-beta release in a few hours) but spies have repeatedly been a too over/under-powered mechanic.

I suspect that the mechanic is finicky because basically a spying mission in this game is 1)a crapshoot and 2) a high stakes one. For 1 the only information usually available is the success chance which may be quite inaccurate depending on the agents of the target and which the player can only influence a small amount by selecting the time of the mission. Which leads to 2 the configuration of the mission as more or less an all or nothing. Both of these characteristics have become more extreme in the recent adjustments.

What to do? Perhaps for 1 the player could be provided with a bit more information about the possibility of target bonuses, not exact mind you. This could perhaps be influenced by the number of recent missions - our recent intelligence suggests that the XXX are likely to have a significant counter-intelligence capacity, or recent successful missions suggest that we may recieve civilian support for our tech stealing mission, or whatever. To my mind 2 is more important to tweak. So counter-espionage skill/activity should lead to significantly more failed and detected missions, but only slightly more killed/captured agents. (Is it even applied this way at the moment?) But also the rewards should be reduced somewhat and scaled. Sabotage might not always blow up the base outright but maybe only damage a few components. Tech theft could return significantly less research in most cases.

(Aside: a couple of games ago I got a decent espionage spy right out of the box and within a few years they were stealing in excess of 2000k tech for a month mission rated at over 80% success rate - yes it was before the change and yes they did die... But given my entire empire was only producing 1100-1200k research a year at that point it made the largest determinant of the 'success' of my empire a matter of sheer chance. That just didn't seem right...).

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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/29/2014 6:46:04 PM   
tjhkkr


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Nanaki
Version number would be nice, as Counterespionage has been toned down in the 1.9.5.6 beta. Also, additional useful info might be counterespionage skill of any enemy counterespionage agents (You can use galaxy editor to view this) and espionage skills of your agents.


My mistake...
1.9.5.6 - beta 2


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Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.

(in reply to Nanaki)
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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/29/2014 6:47:58 PM   
tjhkkr


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feelotraveller -- those are good thoughts!

_____________________________

Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.

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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/29/2014 6:49:56 PM   
tjhkkr


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For the record, the three agents I sent had probability ratings of:
96% for one year duration; 94% for one year duration; and 92% for one year duration.

_____________________________

Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.

(in reply to tjhkkr)
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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/29/2014 6:50:34 PM   
tjhkkr


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For the record, the three agents I sent had probability ratings of:
96% for one year duration; 94% for one year duration; and 92% for one year duration.

_____________________________

Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.

(in reply to tjhkkr)
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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/30/2014 10:51:14 AM   
Nanaki

 

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Go into galaxy editor and check enemy counterespionage agents and their skills. There is a remote possibility that they might have had numerous agents with very high counterespionage skills. Also, what is the race of both you and your target, as there might be racial espionage bonuses as well.

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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/30/2014 11:09:00 PM   
tjhkkr


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Nanaki
Go into galaxy editor and check enemy counterespionage agents and their skills. There is a remote possibility that they might have had numerous agents with very high counterespionage skills. Also, what is the race of both you and your target, as there might be racial espionage bonuses as well.


I will start a fresh game and try that... but to answer the question.
The espionage of the Race doing the spying is very high: 72.
The agents themselves had high ratings.

The target races were between bad to okay.
I did not send my agents against the Bothans where I KNOW my agents would have gotten their proverbial hides shot off...


_____________________________

Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.

(in reply to Nanaki)
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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/30/2014 11:10:35 PM   
tjhkkr


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I am guessing though that no one else is having the same problem I am... based on the responses I am getting...

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Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.

(in reply to tjhkkr)
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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 7/31/2014 1:01:17 AM   
Keston


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Feelotraveler is right. A crucial aspect of espionage is identifying counterespionage assets, and missions called off due to the risks are relatively common. Some general idea of detection of counter intel should be available.

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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 8/11/2014 7:45:34 AM   
Jndion

 

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Yes, I've experienced the same situation. I frequently save and load under certain identical circumstances, and find out that a 80% chance espionage task usually have a 80%-90% success rate when you conduct spy mission for the first time. However if you have succeeded for several times in a row, the overall success rate will drop gradually until you most certainly will get your characters captured and killed, even though the actual risk value does not change. Which means that you will eventually get your spies killed without doubt, this is supposed to be a balancing method one might wonder.
So I suggest not to conduct spy missions with a single character again and again, and get used to the fact that they will be killed at last. Wait for new spies to regenerate.

(in reply to Keston)
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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 8/11/2014 2:06:58 PM   
Vardis

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Jndion

Yes, I've experienced the same situation. I frequently save and load under certain identical circumstances, and find out that a 80% chance espionage task usually have a 80%-90% success rate when you conduct spy mission for the first time. However if you have succeeded for several times in a row, the overall success rate will drop gradually until you most certainly will get your characters captured and killed, even though the actual risk value does not change. Which means that you will eventually get your spies killed without doubt, this is supposed to be a balancing method one might wonder.
So I suggest not to conduct spy missions with a single character again and again, and get used to the fact that they will be killed at last. Wait for new spies to regenerate.


Unless a lot of tests are run, it's hard to rule out random chance for this sort of thing.

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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 8/11/2014 8:51:17 PM   
Gregorovitch55

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: tjhkkr

I am guessing though that no one else is having the same problem I am... based on the responses I am getting...


No, I am experiencing exactly the same thing. I have burned through all my agents simply attempting to steal territory maps. All have gone out with advertised success probability of ~85-90% on one year missions and the survival rate is actually about 25%. Basically if they're not caught the first time they almost always are the second.

I have received advice that putting them on three month missions, even though it has lower advertised success rate, has a higher survival rate, but i am not convinced it's effective 'cos although it seems they do get back more often they seem to fail much more often too leading me to believe although you might get to send them out on more attempts the overall success rate per capture is at least as bad as for 12 month missions.

Since there is no easier mission to train them on, currently the system is broken as you cannot successfully train a spy up in anything but counter espionage.



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Post #: 14
RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 8/12/2014 12:32:05 AM   
Nanaki

 

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FYI, character exp gain is somewhat screwed, characters gain very little exp for actually doing things, a vast majority of exp gain comes from characters with the 'Inspiring Presence' trait. If you get any characters with that trait, keep them stationed with the bulk of your characters including your spies and watch their skills increase. Also, never, EVER send spies with inspiring presence, and automatically dismiss/get rid of any character with 'Demoralizing' trait, as it works like Inspiring Presence except your characters lose exp instead of gain.

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RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 8/12/2014 2:23:10 AM   
Vardis

 

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The only skill I've had problems with increasing is the counter espionage skill. The other ones I've gotten quite a bit of skill from due to actually doing things.

(in reply to Nanaki)
Post #: 16
RE: Espionage. Counter espionage. 1.9.5.6 - beta 2 - 8/12/2014 2:39:36 AM   
TubbyBoy419


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Just sent off 5 different spies, trying to gain territory maps, 4 of 5 were killed. All were sent for a year, and had a 92% success rate.

Random chance, maybe... Will use the game editor to check the other races...

(in reply to Vardis)
Post #: 17
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