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SotS ANY empire building

AAR SotS Morrigi

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#21 Space Voyager

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 01:29 PM

Yeeeees, the plan is working, my preccccciousssssss.  ;)

I haven't been able to get to know video creation as much as I'd have liked so more pics.

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What this loading screen says is that my empire is the biggest and my allied empire is second... This is a minor spoiler I guess but this game is most likely already won. Never mind though, I will get to know some video software and you WILL get to see some more nice pics before the end.

Aaaaaahhhh... We got CRUISERS!
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Frankly what I should do now is go for cruiser CnC technology and overrun the lot. That is however NOT what I will do... I'm not even going for Repair and salvage tech just yet which I should do if I am not going for CnC... I'm going for some heavy role playing and will research Drone squadrons.
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My plan is to build drone and missile cruisers and research missile techs on the fly - those upgrade missiles without the need for new ships.
THAN I'll overrun the enemies.

My first invasion fleet is ready. No cruisers built yet.
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The fleet consists of drones to remove the enemy combatants and assault shuttles to clean the planet.
People like ZedF (Kerberos' forums) are probably smiling right now because the result is predictable. If you take the time to think about it. You'll see what I mean.

So the fleets is sent to an enemy planet and
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arrives.

I've put a grav ship to the front to slow down the enemy ships that would happen to get near us and because it can take a lot more pounding.
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Drones are already airborne...

After dealing with enemy missiles drones chew on their ships.
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The beauty of drones and the wish of Morrigi - action takes place far away from my ships.
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#22 Space Voyager

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 01:41 PM

After sending some drone carriers to the reserves I call upon assault shuttles!
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Not a nice realization for the planet.

While emitters do short work of any incoming missiles
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the shuttles are on their way.
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The planet is being torn by their strafe runs.
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Ships join the fun, although they can't do much damage with their emitters. Lightings are something planets see all the time.
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Now the not so cool part of the battle. It went very well and all, BUT due to my drone-assault shuttles reserves management the drones and the shuttles on the carriers that were sent into reserves were destroyed!!! I should have been much more careful and wait for the shuttles and drones to dock back!

I'm only left with a handful of drones and 1!!! Assault shuttle. This is where my lack of repair cruisers is becoming painful. Ok, the ships are still there and at full health, but emitters will have a hard time to do a dent. One shuttle... It will have to do the trick. Will report.

#23 FullAuto

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 03:11 PM

Posted the first pic twice, mate!

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#24 Azrael Strife

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 03:53 PM

Now I remember why I haven't played this game much, it gives a LOT of problems, both on my Windows Vista months ago, and on my Windows 7.
Just installed SOTS and BOB, first error was an immediate crash upon launch, google provided a solution which was to create a display.cfg with a default screen resolution as the game didn't seem to be able to detect it automagically. Now second problem is a crash to desktop when trying to access the game settings (I want to change the display settings ingame to get higher quality) ;)
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#25 Space Voyager

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 03:58 PM

View PostFullAuto, on 12th December 2009, 4:11pm, said:

Posted the first pic twice, mate!
No I did NOT!  :)

;)

There, fixed.

#26 FullAuto

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 04:08 PM

It doesn't seem like there's one weapon type that you can just stick with and it's useful in all situations.  A lot of games claim to do this, but generally there's one weapon or type of unit that's overpowered and can do it all, more or less.

In this it seems like you do have to have at least a bit of variety in your ships and the weapons on them in order to obtain best results.

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#27 Space Voyager

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 08:19 PM

True. Though with some luck you can get a nice tech - like I did with emitters. These are pretty powerful in fission destroyer era and will do a nice job as missile defence as well - until there are specialized missiles and far more of them. So they let you invade a fully built world even without dedicated point defence from the start.

After things go cruisers and so forth they become far less awe inspiring.

#28 FullAuto

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 09:15 PM

Do you have certain types of fleets that you always use?  What ships are they made up of?  Do you just put together general-purpose fleets, or are they made into different specialised groups for patrols, planetary assaults, defence, fleet combat, etc?

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#29 Space Voyager

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Posted 13 December 2009 - 12:22 PM

View PostAzrael Strife, on 12th December 2009, 4:53pm, said:

Now I remember why I haven't played this game much, it gives a LOT of problems, both on my Windows Vista months ago, and on my Windows 7.
Just installed SOTS and BOB, first error was an immediate crash upon launch, google provided a solution which was to create a display.cfg with a default screen resolution as the game didn't seem to be able to detect it automagically. Now second problem is a crash to desktop when trying to access the game settings (I want to change the display settings ingame to get higher quality) ;)
Sorry Azrael, we must have posted almost simultaneously... I haven't noticed this before.

Kludgy at Kerberos is really helpful with issues like this. I'll post this for you at their forums.

#30 Space Voyager

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Posted 13 December 2009 - 12:51 PM

Best if you check the thread yourself.

#31 Azrael Strife

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Posted 14 December 2009 - 03:11 AM

View PostSpace Voyager, on 13th December 2009, 12:51pm, said:

http://www.kerberos-...=246766#p246766
Thanks to you too ;) but I have little hope as no one seems to have any clue on what's going on, maybe as a last measure when I have some time I'll reinstall it; this is greatly annoying.
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#32 Space Voyager

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Posted 14 December 2009 - 12:16 PM

View PostFullAuto, on 12th December 2009, 10:15pm, said:

Do you have certain types of fleets that you always use?  What ships are they made up of?  Do you just put together general-purpose fleets, or are they made into different specialised groups for patrols, planetary assaults, defence, fleet combat, etc?
This one demanded a minute or five longer to be answered hence the delay.

I'm sure people have "a standard fleet combo". This being a desired fleet composition, usually race based as well as most races have technological preferences and drive'n'ship characteristics. Hivers for instance will probably go for heavy hitting mass drivers as they usually get armour-piercing ammunition and have a nice chance for neutronium rounds at the end of the mass driver tech tree. They are also pretty fast in combat missions and can take a lot of pounding. So up close and personal weapons and fire away.
Than again, it CAN happen (and - at Kerb' forums - lovingly called sadorandomizer does this to me) that you won't get AP and than you might reconsider this strategy and try your luck with something completely different.

Missiles for instance. Lots of them. That means fast ships with many medium turrets and PD. Ship sections don't just affect armour and possible weapon combinations, they also affect acceleration and turning rate of the ships. So with a different weapon approach you might take that into account to make them more efficient.

It is pretty standard that you will alter your initial plan. You may go for heavy combat lasers, invest some research there just to find out there is no more. And first tier HCL won't last for very long if your enemy got good armour tech rolls. And researched them. So you will need to adapt.

Your research and ship sections combinations are also (heavily) affected by your enemies' choices.

If the enemy went for HCL you might consider smaller faster ships and more of them so that those beams have a hard time tracing or simply go for long ranged weaponry to stay out of their range.

I thought to reveal that in the next update but hey... I have noticed that both the Tarka and Zuul enemies don't have any point defence on their ships. That is unusual at this stage of the game as both use missiles and would probably research and mount PD if they could. They have both started fielding cruisers so my emitter drones aren't as effective any more and I'll start building missile cruisers to counter that and invest into missile research to make them (and my planetary missiles) more powerful.
I'll call this a mild gamble but a lot of missiles are hard to counter in any case and before they come up with A LOT of point defence it will take time. A mix of drones and missiles should keep them busy for a while. And if all goes well, not too long.

What was I trying to tell you really?

Oh, standard fleet composition...

No, there is none. You have a VERY good chance that your ships will not be the same even though you are playing the same race twice in a row. Even when you will use the same ship sections (standards like hammerhead command, armour mission and best-possible-drive etc.) you will most likely need to use different weapons. And use your ships differently.

And all those are only your "standard" assault ships. When you come to specialized fleets you have even more options for specialized ships. Biowar colony destruction fleets. Cloaking technology opens a lot of options for abuse. Etc. etc..

BTW, do take a look at that technology tree. It shows the chances each race has for a certain technology and it has tooltips. And it is HUGE.

#33 Space Voyager

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 07:58 AM

I'm having troubles with video encoding and youtube errors me every time I try to upload non-encoded video so even MORE pics. We'll get there though. Sooner or later... ;)

We continue the exploration. This should give us a clearer picture of the map ownership. One more nice planet was discovered from the previous wave.
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In bigger maps I'd invest much more into the research of the environmental techs to make colonization and terraforming faster. But in this game I don't plan to colonize any more unless it is a great colony and for refuelling purposes so I won't invest there.

Naturally. If I posted every overbudget pic from this game... My Photobucket account would be full. DAMN the sadorandomizer!
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Finally it is here and we move to what we were missing.
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Now to use that tech we have. Bigger carriers!
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We could make these carriers awesome in themselves, add some torpedoes or heavy lasers or whatnot and I would be able to brag but... we have none of those flashy techs. BUT we have drones and they are cool by themselves!

Yes... How about that...
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Anyway, we made a trip to that red Zuul planet you saw.
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Those are CRUISERS, more of them. If these arrive to our colonies now we're toast.

Especially since I was kinda greedy and invested too much into trade. Which also means that my colonies have lowered production to keep those trade lines open! I'll have to rethink that and perhaps close some trade lines at planets I want production to be at full. But those lines are soooo lucrative! I want mo dough!

This is how a Zuul planet looks like;
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Poor planet, forges all over and overharvesting at all times. We'll try to get back to you in time to set you free of that vermin.

This tech will help! It will allow us to build cruiser sized leaders. They have two drones on their own and they will add a lot of extra ships into the fight.
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Now Zuul decides to pay us a visit. To our still young colony only defended by a few drone carrying destroyers.
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There are 36 ships in that Zuul fleet and it makes me kinda scared. If there are some cruisers in there...

Well, me fooling around with video capture wasn't very successful. In short, those were destroyers. I scrambled drones from the nearby colony (you see it in the previous pic) and they tore the Zuul ships into little pieces. I really wanted to show you Zuul ships, those scrapheap challenge losers are my favourite ships design-wise. I'll get back to those.

Our exploration is almost finished.
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What do we have in store for next time?
HOPEFULLY some video. I don't understand what I'm doing wrong really. The capture is very easy with X-Fire. But when I try to encode that video the Video Spin it hangs. It shows nothing in the preview and it does nothing when I go to create movie. Perhaps the problem is that I capture the video at half size so I'll try full screen next time. The tutorial makes everything seem so simple - until you try it yourself, dammit.

And some cruisers of our own in action.

#34 Space Voyager

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Posted 18 December 2009 - 08:52 AM

FI   NA   LY.

Two steps were necessary for the big breakthrough at videos...
1) It was essential to stop trying the video encoding with Video Spin. It is a great program and all. For video editing. Not encoding.  :D
2) I had to determine the parameters that would yield a visually passable result while reducing the MB considerably. Do I understand them all? NO. But they work. Kinda like gravity.  ;)

Anyway, the video of the map used to be 650MB, now it is 32!!! That is a reduction factor 20! True, there is some quality reduction (especially in colours) but hey...

I'm showing you two things that are VERY hard to be shown with screenshots adequately.

THE MAP If you haven't played a game with fully 3D star map this one is hard to imagine. Especially the political view, 3D blobs with shadowing and all. I'd need like 20 shots for you to imagine it correctly. A video is a MUCH better choice.

ZUUL SHIPS These heaps of scrap are practically impossible to be correctly depicted with pictures. Seriously, I had huge problems while trying to make good, recognizable screenshots for them. I did know what was on them, but seeing them later in a review always looked like... a heap... of... something! Videos will help here A LOT. Destroyers for now.

This breakthrough also means that we can get on with the story. Stay tuned.

#35 Thorondor

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Posted 18 December 2009 - 12:43 PM

Congratulations, SV! :D

Video definitely surpasses a number of barriers screenshots have. Very nice 3D map indeed! :)

::

Red on sensors: The Zuul menace cometh. ;)

#36 FullAuto

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Posted 18 December 2009 - 06:59 PM

Video is very handy for stuff like that.  I'll have to experiment.

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#37 Space Voyager

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Posted 19 December 2009 - 07:57 PM

The more we know about this Zuul enemy that used to be just a minor menace...
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...the less we like it. What is so bad about it? Their planet has SLAVES. The Zuul way, so what? No no no... That means that they have been "feeding" from Tarka... That is also why they have become no. 2 in this part of the galaxy. They have just taken my no. 1 target priority.

We'll go for a serious upgrade. Fusion.
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But believe me. Unless it is a turn or two, it is not worth waiting for. Build more ships, create more designs, attack more enemies.
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Oh, this will help. Finally we can replenish our lost drones and repair our ships.

Our new fleet in the making.
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Why aren't we waiting for danger? Oh, there is danger. If we waited for signs, it would be too late. Fleets aren't built in a day, nor a turn. Especially with my heavy trade investments where planets have routes to feed. Not sorry any more, have more than enough industry to spend those credits. Not getting stinking rich nor do I plan to wait that long.

Ah, an old acquaintance dropped by one of our colonies.
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Not glad to see it, but it's here.
My fears were justified. Drones are no match for a Von Newmann point defence. This is the best PD one can imagine.
The good news; they are not here to kill us all. They are here to take our resources. Our ships did destroy their probes yet they managed to take 300 of the colony's resources.
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Von Newmann are automated drilling machines. The only thing that could warn us about their visit are science stations. And those are a tech we will not see in this game, it will not last that long. Perhaps next time we go for a longer ride.

BTW, those emitters are blue. I have yet to master that video encoding but blue seems to be hit the hardest. And emitters look red. Weird.

#38 Space Voyager

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Posted 19 December 2009 - 08:24 PM

Fusion is cool. When it is researched...
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...your tech tree makes it look like Christmas. Appropriate, he he he! A lot of new toys to have fun with. A LOT. So what did I say I was going to do? I am going to make those missiles I have planted on my ships better.

Step one;
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While I'm researching new missile upgrades, I do the necessary work; I'm "fusing my designs". Meaning giving my designs fusion engine sections.
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My attack fleet takes form
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and is sent over the ridge.
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Try to plan ahead. My fleet is not complete. Ok, with missiles I can destroy more or less everything (without PD) but colonies will be pulverized and will shine in radiation forever if I just nuke them. So that over-the-rift colony, already building capable, is building our assault shuttles so that we don't waste more time at home. That colony is our assault base because;
- it is over the rift
- it is close to Zuul colony
- it was hit by Zuul fleet, containing a bore ship.

What does that mean? It means that there is a Zuul nodeline from their colony leading to our colony. Still unclear? Well, next Zuul fleet might not be as slow as that first was. Should they choose to send a fleet with no bore ship down that nodeline they will be there FAST. No time for me to save the colony.

The extent of Zuul plague becomes clearer.
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Step two.
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DAMN pirates.
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Thankfully only one of those expensive traders was destroyed. And all my guard ships due to my bad judgement.

Step three; a little extra something!
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Nice. That will help a lot. Didn't expect it but I don't mind! :D Sometimes the sadorandomizer ain't that sadistic.

Our fleet comes across and takes shape.
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We also scraped the defending fleet. And started building another one.

The future?
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BATTLES BEGIN. Not the small crap you saw, we take on the enemy. Late but better late then never.

Stay tuned. Will go for longer vids.

#39 FullAuto

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Posted 19 December 2009 - 11:36 PM

Ahhh, so you can simply plaster colonies from orbit, but it's better to capture them with assaults?

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#40 BadgerBadger

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Posted 20 December 2009 - 06:15 AM

View PostFullAuto, on 19th December 2009, 5:36pm, said:

Ahhh, so you can simply plaster colonies from orbit, but it's better to capture them with assaults?
...Only if you want the industry and civilians to run it... :D


in the early versions of the game, IIUC, you couldn't occupy at all; had to flatten 'em.

i come here occaisionally to look at sv's pics, i love me some sots; and have never played as the Crows; but if i switch games now I'll never get anything done.

ps: there's also the plague; you can spore 'em from outer space.

and one of the races likes to drop their "face-hugger"-like yung'uns on ya.





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