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Starbase II suceptability to spying
10-09-2015, 08:43 PM (This post was last modified: 10-09-2015 08:44 PM by Sanbi.)
Post: #1
Starbase II suceptability to spying
Is a Starbase II harder for spies to destroy than a starbase I, or just as easy? Sometimes I hesitate to upgrade a starbase because spies could just blow it up. I've been experimenting with building unnecessary hydroponic farms to reduce the chance of my starbase being sabotauged.
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10-10-2015, 12:16 AM
Post: #2
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
It does not, but it sounds like a nice feature?
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10-10-2015, 03:02 AM
Post: #3
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
(10-10-2015 12:16 AM)rocco Wrote:  It does not, but it sounds like a nice feature?

I would be interesting if the starbase "downgraded" (e.g., from 3 to 2, or 2 to 1, or 1 to destroy) on a successful spy event.
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10-10-2015, 03:40 AM
Post: #4
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
(10-10-2015 03:02 AM)Diebo Wrote:  
(10-10-2015 12:16 AM)rocco Wrote:  It does not, but it sounds like a nice feature?

I would be interesting if the starbase "downgraded" (e.g., from 3 to 2, or 2 to 1, or 1 to destroy) on a successful spy event.

I like it.

GC ID - VanderLegion, GMT-9. Sandbox GC ID (Beta) - VanderLegion
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10-10-2015, 08:49 AM (This post was last modified: 10-12-2015 06:43 AM by Sanbi.)
Post: #5
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
I also like it. It might make spies less bursty.
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10-11-2015, 07:03 PM (This post was last modified: 10-11-2015 07:09 PM by anthee.)
Post: #6
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
"Downgrading" wouldn't make much sense from a realistic perspective, though. How would a spy be able to bring about such a magical change? A starbase upgrade conceivably involves all kinds of improvements to infrastructure and technology rather than just mounting a few extra guns on it which the spy could blow up or make malfunctional.

How about giving a SB2 a 50% chance to avoid a successful spy event whose target it became and capturing an enemy spy? SB3 could have a 75% chance for such. After all, infiltrating and destroying an enemy military complex is risky business.

Another idea would be to introduce a new set of technologies called "Ship Security System I-III" or some such which would give access to a ship system that'd grant a percentage chance to negate a spy event directed against the ship in question and capturing the spy. The percentage chance could scale according to ship size with bigger ships getting a better chance to bust the spy. Limit one per ship, also installable on starbases. The PP cost should be pretty low or nonexistent because researching the techs and spending a system slot for something like this would already be a significant investment (compare with CSF1-2 which effectively and automatically grants an empire-wide bonus to defensive spying).

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10-12-2015, 06:30 AM
Post: #7
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
I was pretty sure there was a change during beta that reduce the occurrence of an sb getting blown up by spies. Forgot the details, but sb don't blow up as much now.
I thought possibly it was to make sb2 and sb3 more resistant to sabotage, but apparently not according to Roc's post above.
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10-12-2015, 06:43 AM (This post was last modified: 10-12-2015 07:30 AM by Sanbi.)
Post: #8
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
On 2nd thought the downgrade idea might make also the gameplay more static. The sudden destruction of a starbase II allows for a quick surprise attack on an unprotected planet to end dragging games, which Anthee's percent chance reduction idea addresses.

I can however, imagine a sitrep that rationalizes the downgrading of a starbase though, assuming a better starbase isn't just about being bigger. It might read:

"Your spies sabotauged a starbase II and the explosion damaged weapons and ejected armor into space. Engineers salvaged what they could and the installation has been reclassified as a starbase I."

To make the jury-rigged recovery more believable, the starbase could even temporarily lose 3-10 percent of its current armor and structural health the next turn, just to make it look like the base took some damage and engineers were wielding the scraps back together.
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10-12-2015, 10:46 AM
Post: #9
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
(10-11-2015 07:03 PM)anthee Wrote:  "Downgrading" wouldn't make much sense from a realistic perspective, though. How would a spy be able to bring about such a magical change? A starbase upgrade conceivably involves all kinds of improvements to infrastructure and technology rather than just mounting a few extra guns on it which the spy could blow up or make malfunctional.

How about giving a SB2 a 50% chance to avoid a successful spy event whose target it became and capturing an enemy spy? SB3 could have a 75% chance for such. After all, infiltrating and destroying an enemy military complex is risky business.

Another idea would be to introduce a new set of technologies called "Ship Security System I-III" or some such which would give access to a ship system that'd grant a percentage chance to negate a spy event directed against the ship in question and capturing the spy. The percentage chance could scale according to ship size with bigger ships getting a better chance to bust the spy. Limit one per ship, also installable on starbases. The PP cost should be pretty low or nonexistent because researching the techs and spending a system slot for something like this would already be a significant investment (compare with CSF1-2 which effectively and automatically grants an empire-wide bonus to defensive spying).

I prefer Anthee's idea.

Are Starbases still included in both Civil & Military sabotage? I know it was that way during at least part of the beta, so when I intentionally wanted to destroy Starbases, I would make sure to set my spies to both civil and military sabotage
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10-12-2015, 12:57 PM
Post: #10
RE: Starbase II suceptability to spying
I grant Anthee that downgrading isn't very realistic. But it is simple to understand and implement, and there is plenty that isn't realistic. For example, ships at 1% health being able to fire all weapons fully, or food transporting from a home world to stars 10 turns away, in 1 turn. And as Sanbi points out, all it takes is a bit of imagination to come up with a backstory.

It all comes down to balancing spying. Should a spy be able to take out a Starbase 3? Loss of a SB3 is huge. Loss of 3 CP, and the system will no longer trap a fleet for at least a turn. As people have pointed out, a much cheaper Starbase 1 serves largely the same purpose, with a much lower research threshold. Getting Starbase 2 or 3 tech involves some very hard choices, and very expensive upgrades.

I don't like adding extra tech as a solution. The tech trees are already burdened, and that would require substantial coding/testing.

Tweaking percent chance is an option, but you could still take down a starbase 3 in one swipe. This is a strategic game, not one where much is left to chance. If you see a Starbase 2/3 on a system you are considering attacking, you should be able to strike off the "Lucky Luke Skywalker" destruction scenario as the attacker, and the "OMG where did my SB go?" scenario as the defender.

Also, if you can take down a starbase 3 in one spy event, why not be able to build a SB3 in one turn? That seems fair.

A Starbase 3 is fundamentally a different beast from any other ship. If Starbase 2 protected you from spying, you'd see its value increase, and a lot more invested in building SB2. But that of course comes at a cost of lost fleet building opportunities and lost tech options in the tree. Starbase 2 is "meh" compared to Starbase 3, which would encourage researching and building that tech.

Which gets back to making strategic/tactical decisions. Maybe not realistic, but at least clear and predictable.
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