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Turrets and Remote Repair - How a minor tweak can revitalise combat

First post
Author
CynoNet Two
GoonWaffe
Goonswarm Federation
#1 - 2012-01-09 03:41:56 UTC  |  Edited by: CynoNet Two
Two key elements in EVE combat have somewhat... wonky implementation. Turrets are nigh-impossible to balance around many ship classes, as no matter how much you tweak tracking they can always kill an unintended target outright. This has been true with Battleship versus Frigate for years, and now we're seeing them same thing with Capital class guns versus everything else. You don't have to look too far to see even frigates and pods being alpha'd by an Erebus.

Remote repair is another facet of combat that stacks poorly. A fleet can throw as many reps onto a target as they like and let a combination of low-sig and high-reps tank the damage. Some people have called for a stacking-nerf to remote repair. However I think both of these issues can be fixed together.

In the same way that missiles cannot effectively damage a target below a given size, this rule should also apply to turrets. Citadel torpedoes cannot alpha frigates, so why can 1000mm railguns? Introduce a new factor onto all turret weapons: Target Signature Limit
This is a very simple concept - TSL is a number on each turret weapon to dictate the lowest possible sig radius it can hit. A turret with a TSL of 100 would therefore not be able to hit any ships below a sig radius of 100 - they would be become an automatic miss and the server wouldn't even proceed to calculate damage.
EDIT: Altenatively, if the TSL limit is broken the turrets damage mod is reduced by 98%, meaning that should any damage occur it would be negligible, akin to oversized missiles hitting a target.

Approximate initial values (subject to balancing):
Frigate-class turrets: 0+ (no TSL)
Cruisers-class turrets: Between 25-50
BS-class turrets: Between 75-150
Capital/XL turrets: Approx 600
EDIT: Altenatively, calculate the TSL value based on the weapons current base tracking speed.

What are the effects of this?

It becomes a whole lot easier to balance weapon systems to the intended targets. Instead of balancing weapons around given tracking values and then doing it again on what possible tracking boosts are added to a ship, we have a simple cap in place that helps keep balance. It has several knock-on effects:

  • Indirect Frigate/AF/Interceptor buff = BS and Capitals can no longer alpha them with a single shot. Those ships can still of course be countered with more suitable ships, such as HAC's and BC's.
  • Target painters become far more useful in PVP as both missiles and turrets benefit. You can still use target painters to bring a priority target up above the common TSL in your fleet.
  • Tracking disruptors could increase the TSL limit further, making them more much more effective in negating enemy damage.
  • Tackling a fleet comprised of a single shiptype becomes much easier.
  • Overall it promotes a more mixed fleet doctrine for everyone. Battleship fleets can't rely on their guns to take out incoming tacklers, and must bring smaller escorts. Capitals find it impossible to shake off dictors without frigates and cruisers. Players who prefer smaller, faster ships have more of a role to play again.


But what about Remote Repping (RR)?

This change to putting more value on a ships signature radius in combat leads us nicely into a slight tweak for RR; have active remote repair modules increase the signature radius of their target by a fixed amount. This value would continue to stack indefinitely, meaning that a target who is recieving a significant amount of reps becomes much easier to hit. Eventually their sig will reach the levels where larger weapon classes can damage them more easily - turrets or missiles alike. Ships recieving capital-class reps become close to capital-sized themselves.
A small remote repair module may add 10 to the sig of a ship it is repairing, while a capital-class rep could add 500.

How do these two changes improve EVE?

By making these two simple, yet far-reaching changes, we open up a whole new world for ship balance, roles and niches. EVE is already running dry on ideas to both give purpose to existing ships and add new ones.
Here are some simple suggestions:

  • Longer ranged platforms for target painters and tracking disruptors
  • Very high-damage weapons designed to counter targets under huge amounts of remote reps.
  • Blackops BS buff - instead of Covert Ops cloaks, give them a much smaller sig radius that limits what can hit them.
  • Ships that recieve a role bonus to reduce the TSL on weapons. How about Tech 2 Tier 3 Battleships able to work as effective anti-frigate snipers?
  • Local repair ability becomes much more relevant in certain scenarios, as if you're relying on signature to defend yourself you don't want to be recieving remote reps. Small gangs of frigates and cruisers with a local tank are now more viable with less things around able to alpha them outright.


Overall these two changes are intended to blow the dust off EVE's combat system and invite new ships, new roles, new fleet doctrines and many new approaches to combat. While it will be a major balance shift at first, in the long term EVE will be much better off for it.
CynoNet Two
GoonWaffe
Goonswarm Federation
#2 - 2012-01-09 04:09:15 UTC
I dream of a day when I can fly around in my elite PVP gang and see a new fleet. Not just another Drake/Tengu blob or yet another Alphafleet - but rather something new designed to exploit the weakness of another.

And the next day, someone will counter that fleet with something else. And EVE will never be boring again.
Draconus Lofwyr
The Scope
Gallente Federation
#3 - 2012-01-10 06:16:55 UTC
but using that same logic, shouldn't a ship that has been primaried have some of the incoming damage reduced as the incoming fire gets so high that rounds start colliding and missiles explode when hit by incoming laser fire? As incoming fire increases, the potential for DPS should also decrease?
Wolodymyr
Breaking Ambitions
#4 - 2012-01-10 07:44:26 UTC
CynoNet Two wrote:
I dream of a day when I can fly around in my elite PVP gang and see a new fleet. Not just another Drake/Tengu blob or yet another Alphafleet.

Not to bring politics into this but I think this has more to do with the alliance you are in than anything else.


Also putting hard limits on aspects of game play would actually restrict the amount of different tactics people could use. Right now any ship in the game can attack, and in theory kill, any other ship in the game (except pods, shuttles, freighters, and n anything without guns or drones). But if this TSL thing gets used then there will be a bunch of odd fitting ideas that an FC might try that he can't use because some ships can't attack other ships.

I honestly think PoCo based sov is a good idea https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&m=1417544

CynoNet Two
GoonWaffe
Goonswarm Federation
#5 - 2012-01-10 10:24:20 UTC
Draconus Lofwyr wrote:
but using that same logic, shouldn't a ship that has been primaried have some of the incoming damage reduced as the incoming fire gets so high that rounds start colliding and missiles explode when hit by incoming laser fire? As incoming fire increases, the potential for DPS should also decrease?

This is purely for balance purposes, it's not a real life physics simulation. For example, as much as I'd like to see ship collisions causing damage it wouldn't be that good for people playing the game :)

Wolodymyr wrote:
CynoNet Two wrote:
I dream of a day when I can fly around in my elite PVP gang and see a new fleet. Not just another Drake/Tengu blob or yet another Alphafleet.

Not to bring politics into this but I think this has more to do with the alliance you are in than anything else.

How so? Anywhere you go on the map people use the same few fleet compositions for large-scale warfare, based on whatever the FOTM ships are. This has been the case for years, something gets buffed or nerfed and suddenly a new fleet doctrine takes over for another year.
I'd like to see CCP push toward making all fleet options valid ones. One day you can be flying around and see a mix of Ships A,B, and C, then think to yourself that ships G, Q, and Z would counter it well. I believe EVE would benefit from this more fluid approach to fleet composition, rather than these homogenous blobs that only change with each major patch.

Wolodymyr wrote:
Also putting hard limits on aspects of game play would actually restrict the amount of different tactics people could use. Right now any ship in the game can attack, and in theory kill, any other ship in the game (except pods, shuttles, freighters, and n anything without guns or drones). But if this TSL thing gets used then there will be a bunch of odd fitting ideas that an FC might try that he can't use because some ships can't attack other ships.

We already have hard limits on game play. While benefiting from increased siege mode damage, Dreadnoughts get severe limitations to target locking and tracking, forcing them to go for their intended targerts.
Missiles have had a build in hard-cap on what they can damage for years. This is why you don't see Citadel Torpedoes killing frigates. Why shouldn't the same apply to turrets?

Hard caps have a place in ensuring weapons are effective against their intended targets. They don't totally shut down all fitting options (afterall you could still put cruiser guns on a battleship if you want to shoot smaller targets).
Milfshake CougarHunter
Brutor Tribe
Minmatar Republic
#6 - 2012-01-10 10:38:18 UTC
i dream of a day where Titans can't hit anything below a capital class ship, and i also thing that their EW immunity should also effect the ability to be Remote Sensor Boosted and Remote Tracking.
Malcanis
Vanishing Point.
The Initiative.
#7 - 2012-01-10 15:00:22 UTC
Milfshake CougarHunter wrote:
i dream of a day where Titans can't hit anything below a capital class ship, and i also thing that their EW immunity should also effect the ability to be Remote Sensor Boosted and Remote Tracking.


Although I share your dreams, the second one has already come true.

"Just remember later that I warned against any change to jump ranges or fatigue. You earned whats coming."

Grath Telkin, 11.10.2016

Rodent Jr
GoonWaffe
Goonswarm Federation
#8 - 2012-01-10 17:36:27 UTC
pmchem
Brutor Tribe
Minmatar Republic
#9 - 2012-01-10 17:58:17 UTC
CynoNet Two wrote:

In the same way that missiles cannot effectively damage a target below a given size, this rule should also apply to turrets. Citadel torpedoes cannot alpha frigates, so why can 1000mm railguns? Introduce a new factor onto all turret weapons: Target Signature Limit
This is a very simple concept - TSL is a number on each turret weapon to dictate the lowest possible sig radius it can hit. A turret with a TSL of 100 would therefore not be able to hit any ships below a sig radius of 100 - they would be become an automatic miss and the server wouldn't even proceed to calculate damage.

Suggested initial values:
Frigate-class turrets: 0+ (no TSL)
Cruisers-class turrets: Between 25-50
BS-class turrets: Between 100-150
Capital/XL turrets: Approx 600


It wouldn't even have to be a hard limit (akin to missile range, a step function). It could be a smooth function (akin to missiles + sig. rad.) which happens to have a very drastic effect once you're looking at something like capital turrets vs cruisers. A smooth function may be more desirable from a gameplay and balancing POV.

https://twitter.com/pmchem/ || http://community.eveonline.com/news/dev-blogs/community-spotlight-garpa/ || Goonswarm Economic Warfare Cabal

Kismeteer
Bat Country
Pandemic Horde
#10 - 2012-01-10 19:19:37 UTC
Rodent Jr wrote:
https://www.pandemic-legion.com/killboard/view_kill.php?id=474339

Voting for Rifter justice


This should never happen.
Gripen
#11 - 2012-01-11 01:36:07 UTC
Tracking as ability to hit things which are moving towards you, away from you or sitting still, regardless of their size is an advantage of turret weapon class (opposite to myth that "missiles have advantage over turrets because they are always hit").

Most fleet formats use long range weapons and there are three types of them - turrets, missiles and sentry drones:
- Sentry drones have high DPS, use tracking but inconvenient to use.
- Missiles have high DPS, convenient to use (compared to sentries) but don't hit small/fast targets (use different tracking from turrets and sentries).
- Long range turrets have tracking and convenient to use but have lower DPS than missiles or sentries.

Of course there are other nuances (like cap usage, missile flight time, etc) but those are most important and if you take tracking advantage from turrets away you need to compensate it somehow or we'll get even more drake/tengu blobs.

Otherwise I like idea very much and actually had a VERY similar concept by myself for a long time and its sad that CCP guys don't look interested in serious improvements to combat model and probably believe that EVE is too old for such core changes.
Milfshake CougarHunter
Brutor Tribe
Minmatar Republic
#12 - 2012-01-11 02:32:08 UTC
Rodent Jr wrote:
https://www.pandemic-legion.com/killboard/view_kill.php?id=474339

Voting for Rifter justice


See that is a crock of sh*t, their shouldn't be a snowball's chance in hell a titan should hit a rifter..
LeHarfang
S0utherN Comfort
Test Alliance Please Ignore
#13 - 2012-01-11 07:51:59 UTC  |  Edited by: LeHarfang
I agree, an entire blob of BSs that uses Large guns should'nt be able to one hit frigates and certainly not capital ships which have guns made for killing other capitals and lay seige upon stations and POSes. If they want to kill frigates, they should need to use proper sized equipment.

Gripen wrote:

- Sentry drones have high DPS, use tracking but inconvenient to use.


Yes, sentries (and drones in general) are inconvenient because they can be shot, unlike missiles. However, with the OP's suggestion, drones would get a buff without becoming overpowered since frigates would be able to kill them and large weapons would always miss.

I mean, a large railgun turret (only the turret) is app double the size of a hammerhead drone (the medium turrets being the same size). Of course, high tracking guns should have more chances of hitting them, but only to some extend since large turrets are made to be able to target cruiser and bigger. Following that logic, only small weapons should be able to kill drones.

Edit: This topic should go in another section where the devs will see it more.
Two step
Aperture Harmonics
#14 - 2012-01-11 14:48:02 UTC
I agree that oversized turrets hitting smaller stuff is a significant issue. My vote for how to deal with it would be a fixed damage reduction based on turret signature/target sig size. Leave the current tracking formulas the same, but XL guns hitting a cruiser sized target should be doing 10% of their base damage (or something like that).

CSM 7 Secretary CSM 6 Alternate Delegate @two_step_eve on Twitter My Blog

Shirley Serious
Gutter Press
#15 - 2012-01-11 15:25:19 UTC
there's a racial spread in ship target signature sizes. Minmatar tending towards small signatures, Caldari tending towards larger.

E.g. the Eagle has a base signature of 150m, and so would be hit by battleship sized guns with a limit of 150, whereas a Vagabond with a base signature of 115m, might not, (depending on fit and if using mwd or not).

same with some smaller ships.

so the limits for guns would need to be carefully thought, to avoid a situation where some ships in a class are terrible for pvp in mixed gangs, while others are invulnerable to larger guns.

Just the facts.

Lord Zim
Gallente Federation
#16 - 2012-01-12 20:27:08 UTC
LeHarfang wrote:
Yes, sentries (and drones in general) are inconvenient because they can be shot, unlike missiles.

Wrong. Missiles can be taken out before they hit the target.

Cyno's lit, bridge is up, but one pilot won't be jumping home.

RIP Vile Rat

Malcanis
Vanishing Point.
The Initiative.
#17 - 2012-01-12 20:45:35 UTC
Lord Zim wrote:
LeHarfang wrote:
Yes, sentries (and drones in general) are inconvenient because they can be shot, unlike missiles.

Wrong. Missiles can be taken out before they hit the target.


Only with smartbombs now. Once upon a time you could actually shoot missiles.

"Just remember later that I warned against any change to jump ranges or fatigue. You earned whats coming."

Grath Telkin, 11.10.2016

Velicitia
XS Tech
#18 - 2012-01-12 21:27:01 UTC
Malcanis wrote:
Lord Zim wrote:
LeHarfang wrote:
Yes, sentries (and drones in general) are inconvenient because they can be shot, unlike missiles.

Wrong. Missiles can be taken out before they hit the target.


Only with smartbombs now. Once upon a time you could actually shoot missiles.

ah, so defenders are even more lolbroken than they used to be?

One of the bitter points of a good bittervet is the realisation that all those SP don't really do much, and that the newbie is having much more fun with what little he has. - Tippia

Blastil
Aideron Robotics
#19 - 2012-01-17 19:08:01 UTC
for once, a goon with a good idea. A ship should only really be a viable option against a ship a size class smaller than it is, and should have unlimited upwards scalability. There's a reason why big battleships had small escorts, and it was because those big old guns couldn't keep up against a little picket ship once it got in close. I too dream of a day where avatar pilots wouldn't dream of going out without an escort of frigates and cruisers to handle interceptors and other small threats.

some points I'd suggest:

Instead of attaching this bonus to the ship, attach this bonus to the GUNS. This way a ship could fit smaller guns if it was going to picket against smaller ships. Also, this ballances the new Teir 3 BC's, in that they're designed to fight against bigger ships, not be a intant frigate killer. it also helps BC's fill their role as anti-frigate and cruiser support for battleships and capital ships.
Dark Drifter
Sardaukar Merc Guild
General Tso's Alliance
#20 - 2012-01-18 09:45:33 UTC
Quote:
frigates and pods being alpha'd by an Erebus


yes you can find kms for this stuff.

but...

1 would bet all my isk that that frig/pod was one of the following


  • at 100+km burning straight at the erebus
  • sat perfectly still at any range, probably due to The EPIC lag witnessed during large scale fleet fights
  • empty (ship) outside a POS being used for target practice
  • being piloted by a compleat and utter ******.
  • got webbed by a rapier to nothing with WMD on then poped by the titan
  • was killed by drones (pre crucible) with turret showing on the KM


i personally say no to your entire idea
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