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  #1  
Old January 6th, 2006, 07:36 PM
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Default Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

I'm pretty new to the game, so I'd like some input on the relative strengths and weaknesses of the three ships. Here's what I've noticed so far:

Science Vessel:
+ Only ship to start with Hyperwave Filter Array
* Ship items are cheap, making them easier to obtain but worth fewer points
+ Most cargo space (16)
- Fewest hardpoints (1 weapon, 4 systems)

Pirate Corvette:
+ Only ship to start with Fusion Tube Thrusters
+ Easy primary mission
* Mid-priced items
* Adequate hardpoints (2 weapons, 5 systems)
* Adequate cargo space (12)

Terran Frigate:
+ Most hardpoints (3 weapons, 6 systems)
* Ship items are expensive, making them harder to obtain but worth more points
- Least cargo space (8)

What weight would you give to the different ships' strengths and weaknesses? I can see how a frigate has the potential to become a powerhouse, but in my games so far, it never reaches that potential on a small map, whereas the other two ships can much more easily trade to reach their full potential.
  #2  
Old January 7th, 2006, 05:18 PM
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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

The starting weapons on the pirate and frigate are barly worth mention in significance, however starting with a scanner is a significant time saver and good for the mateiculous planners.

Also please note the significantly different cargo spaces on the three ships.

Personally I like science on a large map for the big cargo space, otherwise im still experimenting.
  #3  
Old January 10th, 2006, 03:09 PM
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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

Thanks! I updated the original post to include the things you mentioned. What about scoring? Does anyone think the scoring criteria for any of the missions is more advantageous than for any others?

It seems like the science vessel has another advantage in that the most expensive items are things you can easily part with (relics and lifeforms) while ship upgrades are cheap, making it very easy to outfit your fleet.
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Old January 10th, 2006, 05:09 PM

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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

Quote:
Adam_Bomb said:
It seems like the science vessel has another advantage in that the most expensive items are things you can easily part with (relics and lifeforms) while ship upgrades are cheap, making it very easy to outfit your fleet.
On the other hand, that means your ships' values (from their installed systems) are also that much lower. Taking the Military mission concentrates points in your ships, while the Scientific mission concentrates points in your cargo hold, and (theoretically, anyway) the Pirate mission balances the two.

For whatever it's worth, eight of my top ten high scores (including the top four) were gotten with the Military mission, while Scientific and Pirate are tied with one each — and I try to make a point of playing all three with equal frequency.

It seems to me that if you take the Military ship, and get all four of the allied Capital ships (or three and the D.), and happen to find a nice assortment of the best ship systems… well, the number of system slots times the value of all those systems just adds up to more than you get from cargo.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 02:03 AM
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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

The point values and distribution of items slightly favor the Military mission. During the beta test, I ran numbers on it a couple of times. The Frigate gets high value for the weapons and systems that are plentiful. It also gets the best value from the ambassadors, by the way, since they are a Strategic item and not a lifeform.

I like the Survey Ship. The ability to scan for enemies is really, really handy, and the limited hardpoints is a non-issue once you get a couple of friends. Plus, lots of cargo space, high value for lifeforms and low cost for weapons and systems adds up to a well-equipped flotilla in pretty short order.

I have a mod I did (which I should really finish and post) that changes the Survey Ship to a Scout Ship. My conceptual model was the First-In Scout from the Liaden series (Carpe Diem, Agent of Change, Plan B et al). Still just one weapon, but reasonable shields, good thrusters and a viable weapon. Plus a cloak.
  #6  
Old January 11th, 2006, 03:45 PM
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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

Updated first post with more info reflecting the latest input.

TaoLibra: Good point about the sheer number of systems slots you can get from a full fleet compared to the number of cargo spots in a science vessel. I can see how this gives the frigate an advantage in scoring.

In spite of this, I still like the science vessel's ability to scan for occupied systems from the outset. It provides for more efficient use of time. Actually, does anyone think that the time limits are too generous right now? I rarely have to worry about getting back home before visiting every single star on the map.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 03:55 PM

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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

The time limits depend a lot on what drives you find when, and if you can avoid nebula diving.
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  #8  
Old January 11th, 2006, 10:18 PM
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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

The large map is by far the most generous time-wise, because you invariably have plenty of time to find the good stardrives (and eventually the hyperdrive) which inevitably *will* be out there because of the number of star systems.

Try going back to the small map. The random factor has a far greater effect on those games -- smaller certainly doesn't mean easier.
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  #9  
Old January 13th, 2006, 04:41 PM

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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

It seems to me that before the patch, on the 20 year map there were always two allied Capital Ships and one Fighter, without fail. Now there are often three Capital ships. Has anybody else noticed this?
  #10  
Old January 16th, 2006, 02:52 PM
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Default Re: Relative Merits of Ship/Mission Types

Shadowcat: I have never played a large map. I played many small maps in the demo, and since buying the full version I usually play mid-sized maps. Even with the small maps, it's rare not to be able to visit every star. I think that something should be done to make this aspect of the game a little tighter to add more tension.
 

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