capital ship gravity draft removes combat challenge

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Killjaeden
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Post by Killjaeden » Tue, 10. Apr 18, 13:30

ZaphodBeeblebrox wrote:Oh dear the selective quote and call it ranting so that the rest of the post can be dismissed tactic. How sad.
OK let's examine what other parts of your post where dismissed then
The ship gravity system was put in by the developers to help the player when flying around L and XL ships. Now you want to remove it for the exact same reason?
Why do you ask why or what i'm asking about, when the answer is in the OP? Summarized for your convenience: It is less challenging and therefore less interesting with the "gravity draft assist mechanic" - which is why an option for disabling or not using it will be valuable for people who like to be challenged by the game mechanically - people who do not want the help that is forced on them
This "lets make it harder for the player" kind of thinking leads to game play that for a number of people will make some actions nigh on impossible.
Do we want a game that only a "super elite" with superb reflexes and flying / fighting skills can enjoy. I suspect that there are a number of players like myself that are at the older end of the spectrum, we sometimes need all the help we can get.
Baseless complaint, because i'm advocating for an "opt out" for the assistment system, which means players actively choose to make it harder if they use the option, not the other way round.
If the base game does not come with some control over the level of difficulty that effects this kind of thing, then is this not something that a re-balance mod should address?
Rebalance mods can't remove stuff that is hardcoded into the engine. And mechanics like flight controlls and assist systems are generally the sort of thing that is hardcoded. If there is a config flag that can be toggled to enable/disable that assist function then i achieved all i am after with this topic - as has been stated in the last sentence of the OP. But as i said, based of experience from modding games this is not the type of feature that can be influenced by modding, which is exactly the reason why this topic exists in the first place.
So the OP in this thread is pure speculation on your part, it is not based on fact
It is based on observation. I analyze and try to find out why i dont like things, and explain them, instead of living in bias.

Try and prove the opposite of what i say: That combat is not easier when the gravity draft system is "abused" (my biased description) by the player to fight capital ships. Then you would have a case on my argument beeing wrong. So far everything ive read is dodging around the topic of combat challenge while utilizing the gravity draft - which i consider as confirmation of my points made in the OP.
Which to my mind is saddening as modders usually bring new game-play and innovation to the series, it just seems that some of them, don't like Egosoft doing the same.
New features do not make everything better automatically, and/or do not make everything right the first time. Iteration is a keyword in game development for a reason. It's worth looking at a feature objectively after they are implemented.
LittleBird wrote:With X-Rebirth Egosoft fokused on ship systems on the surface. I am sure this is in X4 as well.
You simply need some kind of flight assist for this mechanic. And people who say they could maneuver without on the surface or - even better - inside the capital ships... are dreaming.
What does you or egosoft let come to the conclusion that the player must fly as close to the surface of a cap ship that this feature is considered a necessity? It would rely on the assumption that
a) it is necessary for the player to be extremely close (<10m) to a capital ship to enjoy or benefit from surface details provided by subcomponents
b) that it is mechanically impossible to guide and keep a ship manually close to a capital ships surface.
Both are wrong. Subcomponents can be worked with just fine from a distance where you don't need the assist mechanic (say 50- 100m distance to the surface) most of the time. Exceptions are docks*
Players can manually stay very close to a capital just fine in X3 (it is challenging, but that doesnt matter).

So no, there is no definite reason that the game could not live without this feature. The feature is nice to have, for people who like it or feel like they need it, which is entirely ok. Some people don't want it however. In XR there is no way to "engage" this "gravity draft" mode by choice upon closing in on a cap ship, it is always forced upon you. So giving the option to "opt out" (remove this feature), or to let the player "opt in" by pressing a hotkey or button once in range of a capital ship (gravity assist off/on) would adress this conflict of interest.

*But this is not a unique problem to X, landing on a moving carrier is a staple of many flight simulators and can be made very easy by having a capital stay it's course when landing permission was granted until the ship is docked, or - even easier - to have it stop like in X3 until ships are landed or started.
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Yeah it's always fun to wield such generalisations as a club to swat all arguments with. It's not very nuanced however.
If someone would just use such generalisations and simplifications as development principle for their game there would not be a game to be played, because "its all too much work, or too difficult, or simply not worth the bother" in principle. The irony of this statement is not lost on me.
Last edited by Killjaeden on Tue, 10. Apr 18, 14:00, edited 1 time in total.
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ZaphodBeeblebrox
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Post by ZaphodBeeblebrox » Tue, 10. Apr 18, 14:00

Here are some easy questions for you to answer then.

1) Do you play Rebirth
2) Have you ever used the "gravity draft" system
3) Have you ever captured a Fulmekron using this method or any other XL ship
4) If you have not answered yes to any of the above. How can anything you say be based on "observation"?
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Killjaeden
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Post by Killjaeden » Tue, 10. Apr 18, 14:35

ZaphodBeeblebrox wrote:If you have not answered yes to any of the above
None of those things are required to make observations.
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GCU Grey Area
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Post by GCU Grey Area » Tue, 10. Apr 18, 22:55

Killjaeden wrote:None of those things are required to make observations.
Just curious, what are you basing those observations on if you have no personal experience of the feature?
i'm advocating for an "opt out" for the assistment system, which means players actively choose to make it harder if they use the option
It's already optional - no need to waste dev time putting a toggle in game options. It only works if the player slows down to the same speed as the capital ship. Stay fast & it has no effect.

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Killjaeden
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Post by Killjaeden » Wed, 11. Apr 18, 12:59

It's already optional - no need to waste dev time putting a toggle in game options. It only works if the player slows down to the same speed as the capital ship. Stay fast & it has no effect.
That's the on the same line as saying "There is this graphical glitch, but if you don't look at it, it won't affect you.".
No this is not an option. If you slow down to stay in position relative to a ship you have no choice, because it is automatically removing any need for maneuvering and therefore the challenge of it - the point i already explained in the OP.
GCU Grey Area wrote:what are you basing those observations
Observation... as in observing other people play ?
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Spero
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Post by Spero » Wed, 11. Apr 18, 13:49

It is a nice system but yeah, it is really overpowered. I think it should just not be 100% effective, whereby the player's ship is pulled along with the capital ship, but not with 100% accuracy, so you still need to maneuver and use thrust.

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Post by GCU Grey Area » Wed, 11. Apr 18, 15:17

Spero wrote:It is a nice system but yeah, it is really overpowered. I think it should just not be 100% effective, whereby the player's ship is pulled along with the capital ship, but not with 100% accuracy, so you still need to maneuver and use thrust.
Overpowered? I found it to be a frustratingly slow method of eliminating subsystems on a capital ship. Quite dangerous too. Whenever I popped up to take a shot the volume of return fire on the bigger ships was often horrendous, never mind that the most obvious place to hide with the fewest turrets often meant being continually cooked by the capital's engines. Been a very long time since I used that approach. It's just not that good IMO. Find high speed attack runs with swarm missiles to be far more effective in terms of the time it takes to disarm a capital & the danger my ship is exposed to.

Not keen on your suggested tweak. While I don't use the feature with enemy ships I do find it very useful when flying in formation with my own capitals - effectively providing a mobile extra turret (mostly I use a Lepton, good ship but practically unarmed so it needs the help). Would hate to get constantly left behind every time I fire a Novadrone, for example.

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mr.WHO
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Post by mr.WHO » Wed, 11. Apr 18, 18:26

I think that Killjaeden idea to make this on/off option would be best for everyone.

Want it easy to fly next to moving capitals? Turn on.
Want more hardcore/realistic gameplay? Turn off.
Options are good. Everyone is happy.

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Post by TonyEvans » Tue, 17. Apr 18, 23:55

I think people are forgetting that the Gravity effect also helps prevent collisions with smaller ships. Either that or their impact damage was taken off. It created a kind of "well" that would divert incoming small craft, but in a way that didn't make them behave weirdly.

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Killjaeden
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Post by Killjaeden » Wed, 18. Apr 18, 18:24

Nope they just switched off damage from collisions because they apparently couldnt manage to make better AI navigation (despite writing about how they improved AI navigation mid XR development at some developer conference if memory serves right)
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Post by PowerPC603 » Wed, 18. Apr 18, 22:52

I usually destroy the engines first and the jumpdrive, so it cannot jump out or boost away from me at high speeds.
So the dragging along isn't really an issue for me.

But I like the addition of that feature.

Besides that, it could also help when small ships would be docking onto a XL ship, which is moving.
The closer they get, the more they're dragged along with the XL ship and they can dock alot easier without bumping into the sides of the hangar bay.

AFAIK, right now, when a ship docks at an XL ship, the XL ship will come to a halt before the small ship can dock.
Using that system, the XL ship shouldn't need to come to a complete halt, making itself a sittiing duck while some fighter is docking.
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Post by ZaphodBeeblebrox » Thu, 19. Apr 18, 08:15

As a counter to misinformation.

Making of X Rebirth - Matthias on Pathing

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dt4B4e3i5_0

[Edit] As opposed to X3 that does not have any pathing calculations when ships are crossing sectors.
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Post by vkerinav » Fri, 20. Apr 18, 15:16

Is there really much pathfinding involved at that range? There is a need to navigate around a capital ship, in order to target specific surface elements, but otherwise it's simply an attack run followed by evasion, then repeat. Due to the gravity draft, the capital ship is always stationary relative to attacking fighters, so there should be no collisions. Or maybe only low-skilled pilots crash into things.

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Killjaeden
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Post by Killjaeden » Mon, 30. Apr 18, 15:24

ZaphodBeeblebrox wrote:[Edit] As opposed to X3 that does not have any pathing calculations
There may be rudimentary path planning, but collision avoidance and everything that requires reacting on dynamic state certainly is just as bad as it was in X3. As evidenced by a significant occurance of ships bumping into the capitalship they are attacking and similar stuff.
it's simply an attack run followed by evasion, then repeat
It's the evasion part that is critically lacking in X3 and XR. Otherwise they wouldnt have felt the need to turn off collision damage.
Same was seen in one of the first X4 presentation, where fighters that either started or landed (can't remember) bumped into the carrier ship several times.
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Post by Beermachine » Thu, 3. May 18, 11:23

Agree completely with the original post.

While I can certainly understand the reasoning for it's development, and support having it as an option for players, being able to disable this feature would be very welcome.

I personally hate anything that takes away from the 1:1 control of games, be it aim assists, movement assists etc, as they both remove the challenge and satisfaction of mastering movement and aiming, as well as ruin the experience by taking away or temporarily changing the control dynamic for the player.

@GCU Grey Area The fact that it only kicks in when slowing down to the same speed as the capital ship is not ideal as it then removes the option of any low speed manoeuvers without assists, and provides a disconnect when the control mechanic suddenly changes when at those speeds.

An option is far better and should take next to no development time when the code is already in place for it to be enabled / disabled in game via a speed switch.

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