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Old January 14th, 2002, 07:42 PM
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Default newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

I think it would be dead useful if you tyros out there would set out some chapter and verse on ship and fleet strategy. By this, I do not mean preferences for design and handling of ships, I am thinking of something more practical.

I for one am confused about all the different strategy sections of the various menus - ie which one should I be using for default strategy for a fleet? what one is default strategy for a particular ship? how do I put in strategy commands for a specific battle etc.

Practical suggestions would be well useful
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Old January 14th, 2002, 07:51 PM
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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

If you have missile ship, use Max Weapons Range. Make sure to change the secondary strategy for this one from Point Blank to Optimal, cause you don't want your missile ships to be right up in the front lines.

For direct fire ships, I mostly use Short Weapons Range, or sometimes Optimal Range.

If you have Talismans, then it is usually a good idea to go with Max Weapons Range so that you can get the most out of your 100% to hit. At long ranges, your enemies will have a hard time of shooting at you, while you can't miss. This also works with Wave-Motion Guns and Anti-Matter Torpedos, cause they get natural to-hit bonuses (which you have to look in components.txt for, cause they are not listed inside the game).

[Edit]If your direct fire ships get a lot of experience (as in 30 or more), then it might be a good idea to set their strategy to Max Range. Their experience will allow them to hit at longer ranges, so take advantage of this. Your enemy's ships will have a harder time hitting you, while your experienced ships will still be able to hit most of the time.[/Edit]

It is a good idea to change every strategy so that all vehicles break formation. This eliminates the ships scrambling into fleet formation while moving themselves out of weapons range. This also allows your ships to use their individual design strategies, instead of the generic fleet strategy. This allows for more effective combined-arms fleets, because your direct fire ships will move into range, while the missile ships will stay towards the back, removing them from the direct fire weapons of your enemies.

[Edit]
For a fleet with only one class of weapons, just set the fleet to the same strategy that you have the ships set to (ie Max Range for missiles or Short/Optimal for direct fire). For a combined-arms fleet, it can get trickier. If your fleet has a large majority of one type of ship, then set the fleet strategy to that of the majority. If the ratio is roughly equal, then it depends on your enemies for which strategy it is best to set it to. If the enemy uses a lot of missile ships, then you should use Short Weapons Range so that you can try to close in with the direct fire ships. If your enemy uses mostly direct fire, then set the fleet to Max Range, so that you can minimize the enemies opportunities to fire. Of course, if you set all ships to break formation, then all of this because irrelevant because your ships will use their own strategy and ignore the fleets. Of course, you need to make sure that you set every ship design's strategy in the ship design window, or else they will use Optimal Range, which could be bad.

And also, do not trust the combat simulator for how your ships will perform in real game experiences. Basically, the simulator is a POS, and it is not always accurate.
[/Edit]

[ 14 January 2002: Message edited by: Imperator Fyron ]

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Old January 15th, 2002, 11:08 AM
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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

Thanks IF - useful tips there - my question however is how do you change the strategies - strategies seem to be in about 10 different places - on your ship in the design ship screen, on the empire status system and accessable by the pawn icon on the toolbar

what does what? it is confusing
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Old January 15th, 2002, 12:06 PM
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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

actually IF, completely ignore my response below, you have explained a lot of what goes on

So if I get this right, when you design the ship, make sure you set its strategy (max for missile ships, short range/optimal for close assault types)

when you create a fleet, the strategy bit there (ie the prawn) allows you to set the limited options (formation, primary strategy and secondary strategy (what's the difference by the way)

how does the exceedingly complex strategy board in the empire status window link in to all this?
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Old January 15th, 2002, 06:52 PM

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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

"how does the exceedingly complex strategy board in the empire status window link in to all this?"

That board *makes* the strategies you assign later. When you assign a fleet strategies, you can only pick formation and strategy; the "secondary strategy" bit comes from the empire status window strategy page. EDIT: And what it does is tell the ship what to do if I can't do it's primary strategy. Say you set it to "short range, Don't Get Hurt". If your ship cannot close to short range with it's target, it will run away.

So:
-the empire status window (and anything that looks like it) *creates* strategies and edits existing ones
-The strategy box in design creation assigns strategies for individual ship class
-the pawn assigns strategies for fleets, as well as formation

For mixed-ship fleets, I find the best thing to do is set them to break formation.

Phoenix-D

[ 15 January 2002: Message edited by: Phoenix-D ]

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Old January 16th, 2002, 09:44 PM
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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

"Break formation" is almost always better than holding formation, because of the aforemetioned problem with ships flying out of range of enemy ships to hold the formation. But, I can think of one exception, in the case of Capture Planet.

Say you have a fleet with mostly warships and a troop transport (with troops on it, naturally). The way the strategies are set up by default, the warships will pound the planet to smithereens before the troop transport will get there. So, I've changed 'Capture Planet' to (a) thwack enemies till all weapons are gone, and (b) dole out less than 100% damage on the planet. But, if the ships were set to break formation, the warships would revert back to the ship designs' default planet-pounding strategy. If the ships do not break formation from a fleet set to Capture Planet, the warships shouldn't eradicate the planet before the troop transport gets there. (At least that's been my experience.)

Tangential question: if a ship is set to break formation from a fleet, does it still get the fleet's experience bonus?

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Old January 17th, 2002, 12:50 AM
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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

quote:
Tangential question: if a ship is set to break formation from a fleet, does it still get the fleet's experience bonus?


Yes.
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Old January 17th, 2002, 04:17 PM
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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

Thanks! (Whew, for a while there I thought I was going to have to completely redo my tactics....)

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Old January 17th, 2002, 06:58 PM

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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

I have lost whole fleets of 30 ships because I forgot to make sure the fleet breaks formation when it meets anything.

If the leader cannot move then the fleet does not move.

Your fleet dies.

so make sure you break formation, even if it is because the fleet needs to stop for some coffee.
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Old January 18th, 2002, 03:42 AM
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Default Re: newby\'s guide to ship and fleet strategy

Yeah, in my first post I said that it would be good to set all strategies to break formation a couple of times. Formations are nice for starting positions, but thats about all.
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