Small arms rebalance

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Clux
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Small arms rebalance

Post by Clux »

As it stands right now, everyone only uses Assault rifles and then jumps to laser rifles, this is due the very low firepower of gas-powered small arms and gauss weapons, which makes them not worth the effort of spending resources and time making everybody go for the “meta” of rushing laser rifles, since they provide a huge boost in firepower for Infantry.

So, this is my suggestion of a rebalance for small arms:

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As for single/quad mgs (non-aircraft)

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As for light walkers

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We would also need to move up/down some techs:

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Also, I would add the “gauss weapons optimization” on the applied science techs group to increase their firepower.
But some would say, then why I would consider researching High Speed Machine gun if I can research Gas Powered Small arms? Well, because there is no applied techs for gas-powered arms and they would suffer an increase in IP cost, as for the following table:

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This would slightly increase the cost of mid-late game machine guns and make spamming laser-based units harder, as you will have to plan and build ahead heavy industry.

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Same idea as with the machine guns price rebalance.

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This rebalance could get some tweaks once we test it in game (for that purpose, I would make a togglable option for “small arms rebalance” in the game settings) to increase/decrease price or make slight adjustments.

Let me know what do you guys think about this "rebalance" to make some useless techs than we have already in game useful
Amateurs talk about strategy. Professionals talk about logistics!
Akrakorn
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Akrakorn »

This is a very comprehensive suggestion and I hope Vic sees it, as weapons have needed a rebalance for a good while. I fear using lasers may still be too good, but the machinery cost will make people rethink whether not using logistic points for ammo is worth the extra production cost, so the fear might be unfounded. Regardless, any change is better than what we have now.
Saros
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Saros »

We have a number of similar balance changes previously collated in this thread: https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=4887476

Vic if you are reading this can you take a look, right now MP is hampered by the only viable solution being to rush to lasers because they are just so much better than anything else if you get them first you can just walk over any non-laser opponents.

In addition to this it's come up how jetpacks and personal shields are completely useless, jetpacks becuase they max out at padded e-suit and shields because they are more expensive but worse than the battledress's. This is without accounting for jetpacks lacking OOB formations.

I think personal shields and jetpacks should be optional extras to add to an infantry model, maybe an extra step at the model design screen where you can add one or both and they should mix with normal infantry like you get with MG/QMG. Personal Shields could also be tweaked to let a unit shrug off a hit/retreat/kill result rather than just being a set defensive value, this would make jetpack/personal shield infantry great attackers which is a nice that would be nice to have late-game.
Maerchen
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Maerchen »

Commenting for support! Very good suggestions.
The logistics hell this game is IS the fun part! - Maerchen, 2020

The good thing is, we have all the information in the reports. The bad thing is, we have all the information. Maerchen, 2020

Came for SE. Will stay for SE.
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Vic
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Vic »

Thanks for these ideas. Read them and taking them along for the next finetuning patch.

best wishes,
Vic
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Arcalane
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Arcalane »

Honestly I would ditch the gas-propelled weaponry entirely. From my own digging into the concept(s) involved (since I assume they're meant to be combustion light-gas guns*), they sound hideously impractical as personal-scale arms to the point that nobody would ever consider seriously using them - they're too mechanically complex, require too much volume for the gas, and accuracy is average at best. Gamewise they function as a 'noob trap', something that wastes the time and resources of an inexperienced player whilst all experienced players will avoid it on principle.

I'd go with;
Cased Ballistic -> Caseless Ballistic -> Coilgun (Railgun) -> Laser (Beam) -> Plasma
Essentially you have a sliding scale of ammo use vs energy use. Cased and caseless ballistics are pure ammo, but caseless uses slightly less. Coilgun uses even less ammo, but adds some energy cost. Railgun is the vehicle equivalent of coilgun. Lasers and up are pure energy cost.

Maybe throw in gyrojets* if you really want some alt-tech options in there, just make sure they're reasonably competitive.

*I'd add links but my account is too new to add urls to posts, apparently.
zgrssd
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by zgrssd »

ORIGINAL: Arcalane

Honestly I would ditch the gas-propelled weaponry entirely. From my own digging into the concept(s) involved (since I assume they're meant to be combustion light-gas guns*), they sound hideously impractical as personal-scale arms to the point that nobody would ever consider seriously using them - they're too mechanically complex, require too much volume for the gas, and accuracy is average at best. Gamewise they function as a 'noob trap', something that wastes the time and resources of an inexperienced player whilst all experienced players will avoid it on principle.

Pretty sure Gas Powerd Air Rifles are supposed to simulate the Girardoni Air Rifle:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Girardoni_air_rifle

It was used by the Lewis and Clarke Expidition and the Austrian Military from 1780 to 1815.

The main advantage is a pretty low ammo/supply consumption. On planets where metals are limited, you are a hundreds times better off to only fire from Gas Powered Rifles - almost the same firepwoer as autoamtic rifles, for 1/3rd of the ammo consumption

Edit: I actually made a thread about odd old technology that might be usefull in the setting of Shadow Empires:
https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=4835260
DW2 Poll:
"Should the Civil and non-Combat Ships loose all or most of their weapon slots?"
https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/view ... 1&t=382690
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BlueTemplar
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by BlueTemplar »

Hmm, yeah, like with the "Charged" Gauss small arms, one wonders what the previous firearms are supposed to use if not compressed gas (resulting from combustion, which might be the main difference ?).

And one indeed wonders why if the "Gas Powered" actually are meant to use non-combustion gasses, while it makes sense for them to be higher tech, it doesn't really make sense for them to have better firepower (it should be worse instead ?) - except of course for gameplay balance reasons !
Arcalane
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Arcalane »

ORIGINAL: zgrssd
Pretty sure Gas Powerd Air Rifles are supposed to simulate the Girardoni Air Rifle: -

It was used by the Lewis and Clarke Expidition and the Austrian Military from 1780 to 1815.

The main advantage is a pretty low ammo/supply consumption. On planets where metals are limited, you are a hundreds times better off to only fire from Gas Powered Rifles - almost the same firepwoer as autoamtic rifles, for 1/3rd of the ammo consumption

Edit: I actually made a thread about odd old technology that might be usefull in the setting of Shadow Empires: -

Interesting, but I'm still very skeptical. The initial WP article clearly notes their high failure rate and the arduous nature of recharging the weapons' gas supplies. Whilst the failure rate can be worked around somewhat and electrically-powered portable compressors are likely an option in most cases, the entire system is still far more mechanically complex than it needs to be - and as Maxim 48 tells us, if it ain't broke, it hasn't been issued to the infantry.

They'd probably work ok on most worlds, but I feel the concept falls apart the moment you play on an airless moon or planetoid. Suddenly all your troops need to carry their entire gas supply instead of using portable compressors, and that's massive extra strain on your logistics chain that completely nullifies your gains from reduced ammo consumption. You could handwave it, but that almost feels like it'd go against the spirit of how crunchy and deep Shadow Empire is trying to be.

Interesting thread too. If it wasn't a couple months old at this point, I'd add electrochemical/caseless firearms and gyrojets to the list.
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BlueTemplar
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by BlueTemplar »

Please do add, a couple months old is a very short time as forums go !

Well, the main issue with airless moons is that (conventional) firearms and diesel engines shouldn't be able to work either...
zgrssd
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by zgrssd »

ORIGINAL: BlueTemplar

Well, the main issue with airless moons is that (conventional) firearms and diesel engines shouldn't be able to work either...
Not only Airless moons, but everything with not enough Oxygen in the air would need a Oxygenating Agent.
Currently the fuel system symply does not care for this. Fuel has the same efficiency, if you got 80% Oxygen in teh air to burn or 0%. Let us not open that particulary can of worms :)
DW2 Poll:
"Should the Civil and non-Combat Ships loose all or most of their weapon slots?"
https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/view ... 1&t=382690
Arcalane
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Arcalane »

ORIGINAL: BlueTemplar

Please do add, a couple months old is a very short time as forums go !

Well, the main issue with airless moons is that (conventional) firearms and diesel engines shouldn't be able to work either...

Common misconception! Conventional firearms will work OK in vacuum, with one or two caveats; you need to use nonstandard lubricants and less propellant. The stuff we use down here on Earth will boil off into a sticky mess, which is the opposite of lubricating. You would need to use something with less kick, but that would be a benefit as you'd also need less propellant for the same oomph.

Source; the US army did research into this in the 60s for obvious reasons. Project Rho has some stuff about it, you can also look up the unclassified document "The Meanderings of a Weapon Oriented Mind When Applied in a Vacuum Such as the Moon", U.S. Army Weapons Command, Directorate of R&D, Future Weapons Office, June 1965. I'd link directly, but account's too new.

Now, diesel engines I'll give you. Lower-tech electric engines as already-proposed are the obvious solution here.
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BlueTemplar
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by BlueTemplar »

Right, firearms operate too fast to even start using oxygen from the air ?
I guess they're using the sulfur that is part of the composition of back powder as an oxidizer instead ?
Arcalane
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Arcalane »

ORIGINAL: BlueTemplar

Right, firearms operate too fast to even start using oxygen from the air ?
I guess they're using the sulfur that is part of the composition of back powder as an oxidizer instead ?

We haven't used black powder in firearms for a century and change. At a cursory examination though, current smokeless powders use nitrocellulose (and sometimes nitroglycerin and/or diethylene glycol dinitrate) as the primary propellant material.

Think about it; your average gun chamber is not a high-oxygen environment. In fact you want it as airtight as possible so that you don't have any burning particulate and hot gas escaping near the weapon user's face, and you want that bullet making a decent seal with the barrel so that the gas can't leak past it. That means there isn't going to be a lot of oxygen coming in to ignite with in the first place.

The oxygen deficit is made up for by adding graphite, which covers the grains of smokeless powder and prevents static discharge from igniting the ammunition, and by using organic stabilizers to delay the nitrocellulose's degradation over time.

This also means modern guns will fire just fine underwater too... but without specialized projectiles, they'll have a range of only a few meters.

Now, if you try to fire Ye Olde Blackpowder Musket in space (or underwater) it sure won't work. But the regimes aren't quite that backwards..!
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BlueTemplar
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by BlueTemplar »

Why wouldn't a blackpowder musket work in space ?

Nitrocellulose (and such) is the reducer/fuel, but what is the oxidizer/oxidant ?
zgrssd
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by zgrssd »

ORIGINAL: BlueTemplar

Why wouldn't a blackpowder musket work in space ?

Nitrocellulose (and such) is the reducer/fuel, but what is the oxidizer/oxidant ?
Well, the usual oxydizer is Oxygen :)

Any carbon based powder is a explosive, once suspended in the air. Dust Explosions used to be a murderous issue in Coalmining and Flour Production:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dust_explosion
DW2 Poll:
"Should the Civil and non-Combat Ships loose all or most of their weapon slots?"
https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/view ... 1&t=382690
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BlueTemplar
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by BlueTemplar »

Yes, but specifically *not* in the case of firearms (see above).
zgrssd
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by zgrssd »

ORIGINAL: BlueTemplar

Yes, but specifically *not* in the case of firearms (see above).
You were specifically asking about a Blackpowder Musket.
Wich is very different from any firearm with bullets.
DW2 Poll:
"Should the Civil and non-Combat Ships loose all or most of their weapon slots?"
https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/view ... 1&t=382690
Arcalane
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by Arcalane »

As it turns out black powder has its own oxidizer too, which I managed to gloss over- my mistake. So if you could manage to pack a muzzle loader in microgravity (which would be a feat and a half all by itself) you could theoretically fire it. Hitting anything is another question entirely, mind you.

Anyway, again; as I said, the (additional) oxidizer for modern cartridges is in the graphite and the organic compounds that are used to keep the nitrocellulose/propellant pellets stable. Without either of them, it could detonate from a static shock, or degrade within the cartridge and no longer ignite properly (or at all).

Chamber seal and escaping gas is why you don't see revolver mechanisms used for longarms, only sidearms, incidentally. Unless you go to the trouble of making a Nagant-style cylinder lock, some gas and detritus is going to escape from the gap between the cylinder and the barrel. In a carbine or rifle, this results in the wielder's foregrip arm getting burned.
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BlueTemplar
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RE: Small arms rebalance

Post by BlueTemplar »

Thanks, I don't really know much about firearms, though funnily I did have to make a processing chain to make nitrocellulose for bullets in (modded) Factorio. (A somewhat realistic one ? It has like two dozen steps of various chemicals and ingredients...)
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