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Stabbed in the back - 10/7/2015 4:21:26 PM   
RemoteLeg


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Okay, here's the setup:
My empire started out in a corner & I'm expanding toward the center. I cancelled my protection agreement with the pirates and have a screen of warships with long range scanners out front to wait for the inevitable backlash.

Next thing I know, 3-4 pirate raiders have "spawned" right at the back of my empire where they have no right to be and are causing carnage.

How did they get there?
I had thoroughly explored all sectors in my empire, I was watching for them, and my empire is pretty well covered with scanners. So how did they manage to travel undetected through three sectors of closely monitored space?
Is the AI cheating?

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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/7/2015 4:59:37 PM   
Bingeling

 

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Are they new crews? Unless you have turned off respawns, one new gang should pop up as an existing gang is destroyed. That way they can appear behind you without ever moving through your scanners. Such a crew is very weak at the start, though.

If it is bases from existing (large) pirate crews, I believe they somehow got their construction ship through. Maybe you are not paying as much attention as you like to think?

(in reply to RemoteLeg)
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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/7/2015 6:05:54 PM   
Aeson

 

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Also realize that your scanners could have been in the wrong place despite being between your empire and the known pirate bases. If a ship has sufficient fuel to undertake a mission, it does not have to return to its base before heading off to attack a target.

Say for example that the pirate bases are to your north and a neighboring empire is to your east. You had protection agreements with the pirates, so instead of sending their ships against your territory, they sent at least some of their ships to the territory of your eastern neighbor. You cancelled your protection agreements, so the pirates decided to send some of their ships to raid your empire. Where are their ships? To your east, because they've been harassing your neighbor. At least some of these ships likely have sufficient fuel to start raiding your territory without first needing to refuel. From the sounds of things, your scanners are positioned between your empire and the (known) pirate bases, which means that they're to your north and so not in the right position to detect the inbound raiders coming out of your neighbor's territory.

Also be aware that the 'neighbor' that the pirates were harassing doesn't need to be that close; I don't know off the top of my head exactly what the range of the pirate vessels is, but it wouldn't surprise me if at least some of them have ranges of 10+ sectors, and for light combat duty like raiding you don't really need to worry too much about the fuel consumed in combat.

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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/7/2015 6:45:51 PM   
Bingeling

 

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The pirates can come from just about any direction as Aeson writes. The ones raiding you should either come from another area of action (like a mine they busted), or from a base.

As for 10 sectors range, that must be with some serious weird mod. From my observation, the AI does not like to go too far if there are targets nearby. When I have seen a "weird long distance attack" it is the AI going on attack during a phony war, in which the closest target is also far away. They attack one of the closest colonies in war, and I would believe that pirates are the same.

From my Universe launch AAR, I would say that pirates (in an unmodded game) is unlikely to strike from much more than 2 sectors away. And usually from less than that. Of course, with a modded game with more range overall, this distance could be increased.

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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/7/2015 7:29:53 PM   
Aeson

 

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quote:

As for 10 sectors range, that must be with some serious weird mod.

Design range, not strike range, and as I've never modded the game I sincerely doubt that there's any issue with mods affecting things. Recovered derelicts tend to have this kind of range (and I usually see several of those in pirate hands on a prewarp start), whereas the pirate start-of-game designs tend to have shorter ranges (~3-4 sectors design range or so based on a quick check of player-pirate autogenerated start of game designs, at least for escorts/frigates/destroyers). Effective single-target strike range is a little under half the design range; a recovered derelict with a design range of ~10 sectors can reasonably strike targets within ~5 sectors of its nearest refueling point if the strike originates from the refueling point, and can probably conduct raids on several targets which are reasonably close to one another as long as those targets are within ~4 sectors of the nearest refueling point.

I agree that pirates aren't terribly likely to strike targets more than ~2 sectors away, at least if they're using their start-of-game designs or ships which aren't much more advanced than that, but it can and does happen if they get their hands on a derelict with a lot of range or don't have any closer targets that they can hit, or if another pirate faction surrenders to them and they suddenly get a bunch of ships which are relatively distant from their own bases (especially when the raids can be conducted in such a way that the ships are always getting closer to a refueling point).

< Message edited by Aeson -- 10/7/2015 8:30:52 PM >

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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/7/2015 8:17:30 PM   
RemoteLeg


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Thanks everybody.

My empire is in the South-East corner of the map and I have expanded out about 3 sectors to the North and West.
I have met another AI empire to my West and my screen of ships is spread across the front lines.
I have turned off respawning.

Perhaps what Aeson says is true - perhaps they are coming from 'way down in the South-West from my neighbor's territory where I don't expect them. I confess I'm not watching that direction too closely, though they would have to pass two of my colonies to get to the SE corner where I first spotted them.
Sneaky b*stards.

I will accept that as the answer. It's good to know the AI is not cheating.

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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/8/2015 7:24:11 AM   
feygan

 

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Have you checked your planets to ensure their are no pirate facilities on them? Pirates generally try to sneak such things into your empire which then grow and allow them methods of ship building and such seemingly out of nowhere.

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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/8/2015 5:37:11 PM   
RemoteLeg


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That didn't happen here.
During their attack, the pirates did manage to take over one of my mining stations and start causing mischief, so I know what you're referring to. After I destroyed that station I did a complete sweep of the sector and there were no other pirate bases in the area.
No, I think they snuck in along the Southern border of the map.

Now the pirates are swarming me with single destroyers that attack anything that is defenseless. I've had to create multiple fleets of four fast-moving frigates to chase them off.
I hate these guys!!

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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/8/2015 6:17:34 PM   
Bingeling

 

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Single pirate ships smell of a "fresh crew" for me. As do attacking undefended targets. The "richer" guys have fleets that go for small colonies or more valuable mines, the weak one picks on the smaller pieces with weak forces.

Are you really sure there is no pirate base at your rear? Try to track the moves of the pirates on long range scanners, if you they are not heading to/from one of your or another empire's properties, there is most likely a pirate base at one end of the trajectory, and a target on the other end.

(in reply to RemoteLeg)
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RE: Stabbed in the back - 10/9/2015 4:18:48 PM   
RemoteLeg


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From: Canada
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I hear what you're saying.
I checked the sector and adjoining sectors and there is nothing. I also watched the enemy ships and they are all coming from the NorthWest outside my empire, so I think my empire is free of sneaky pirate bases.
I notice that the pirates fly past bases owned by one of my neighbors to attack me, so they either pay protection or are in cahoots. Once I deal with these pirates I might "have a word" with them.

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