Drox Operative 2

Ahh, interesting, I didn’t know that! Sure thing, I’m going to play through this evening to get a larger sample size and will zip up the files after I’m done playing for the day. I ran into a different type of monster ship (Pulse, I think?) that had beams and noticed more misses there, so maybe I just had a string of really bad rolls or I was fighting a type of monster with higher than usual attack or something?

Thinking about it, I really like that as a player you could focus more on projectile weapons like Ram Accelerators and skimp on your Attack stat, instead relying on manual aiming. On the defensive side, there’s an awful lot of projectile weapons, mines, ship ramming, etc that Defense doesn’t seem to affect which has me questioning the value of the stat compared to say, throwing on another shield or some armor plating or something like that instead.

Maybe for the player ship, a successful defense roll vs. a projectile attack could result in a “Deflection” and reduced damage or something? Kinda the opposite of a critical hit. I’m just spitballing and don’t have all the game mechanics mastered yet obviously, just my impression playing through it right now is that Defense feels a little lacking due to the multitude of attacks it doesn’t help the player with and of course with the NPC radar thing prior to 0.806. Attack on the other hand feels very impactful with my beam weapons: crit crit crit BOOM!

It does present options, but it becomes really hard to justify investing any points in Computers or any relevant components, when you can just pile on more Tactical (aka Strength) and also get access to stronger weapons.

Yeah it’s a real issue. Defense is derived from Dexterity (Helm), and there’s just no real reason to invest in it right now.

Not a bad idea. Alternatively, defense/attack could have a reduced (rather than no) effect on projectiles, so if you have a 50% chance of attacking a ship your level with the current Attack, it goes up to 75% with projectiles.

Just to follow up, didn’t upload a save because it seems to be working as advertised. I don’t know if I was fighting some monsters that had really high attack or the change hadn’t fully kicked in or something at first, but afterwards I was seeing consistent misses. Not the ~70% I would expect from my Defense stat, but I would say >30% or so (and I need to factor in psychological biases when looking at that stuff, so it was likely higher than that).

Anyway, so my takeaway right now is that in 0.805, I was convinced Defense wasn’t working at all because I literally never saw a single miss. In 0.806 it seems to be functioning, but my opinion is that it’s very undertuned compared to putting more into Structure or Engineering and putting another shield or armor plate on. I was playing a Drakk ship and ignored computers but have gone back to a Shadow to play around with Computers, and the survivability differences are pretty stark. There’s too many things that Defense won’t protect you against, whereas shields or armor just work and work in consistent ways.

Personally, I’d prefer if Defense could “deflect” like I mentioned or function as some sort of universal damage mitigation mechanism like armor traditionally and would supplement resists or something. If I’ve got an incredibly agile ship flown by an ace pilot, they should be able to minimize damage from mines or projectiles by steering out of the way, IMO.

@KevinC what kind of build do you go with? I find that the requirements for items get really high really fast, and I’m wondering how you get past that at the high levels.

I’ve been restarting multiple times so I really haven’t done much of anything at high level (I think the highest I’ve reached is 49, the rest of my guys are in the teens or low 20s).

I feel the same way about stat requirements on items, they largely dictate how I spend my stats so I don’t really feel like I have a lot of control. For my Drakk ship I ignored Structure completely and just went shields for defense. Drakk ships get Helm when upgrading the ship and between that and having multiple crew with that stat,I didn’t have to invest a ton there. So it was mostly Tactical and Engineering.

That’s what prompted me to reroll a Shadow. I was going to focus on Computers, Helm, Atk/Def kind of thing, wondering if the crit would make it so I could do okay with lower level weapons (since I wouldn’t have the Tactical to run them). It didn’t really work out, Defense just doesn’t provide enough survivability since so many things ignore it, which made me go heavily into Engineering for both energy and shields. That character is mothballed because it’s not really working out, and is what prompted my posts about Defense earlier.

I feel like right now I have a hard time doing a “build” due to stat reqs on components, especially since the past two characters have had terrible luck finding crew. Helm you have no choice dumping points into because your ship gets slower as it gets bigger. Need Tactical to have weapons and engineering/structure for HP, so I mostly just end up having to spend my crew points on whatever stat I’m short on for the items on finding.

The Bonus you get for every 50 base points in a stat also feel off for this reason. Take my Drakk ship, which gains Helm when it upgrades to the next class. These free Helm points do not contribute to the base and I think they should, because getting those free points means I don’t have to invest as many there to equip thrusters, I need them in Tactical or Engineering or something. I also likely have a racial crewman that is giving me that stat. So because I spend fewer points in the stats my race ship gets a bonus in, ironically those end up being the Bonus categories I’m furthest away from.

I’m kind of wishing that stats just gave bonuses to components and weren’t required to equip them because it feels pretty restrictive. Either that or make it so it requires a stat OR a ship level. So maybe if your Tactical was really high you could equip a particular laser early at L27, otherwise you could equip it no matter what your stats are by the time you hit L33 or whatever.

By the way, I have to say the tweak to “chain mines” has made a substantial improvement. Mines are an occasional thing now, I don’t find entire systems carpeted in them. Much more enjoyable to move around the map now.

One thing that’s missing from the fantasy games is low-stat items. Mages, for example, had staves, which provided them with extra modifiers and damage increases while keeping stat requirements low, since they weren’t expected to invest in STR. This is missing from Drox – aside from a few light components, all components assume that you’re fully investing in their stat. For example, you should be able to upgrade your ship with weaker types of lasers at lower TACT (=STR) requirement if you don’t choose to invest in TACT, but those items just don’t exist. Same for the other stats.

That’s interesting, I didn’t know that about Staves. Definitely feels like there’s a need for… something. I don’t feel like I have much agency, I’m pretty restricted in how I spend my stats just to be able to equip level-appropriate components. And it’s not like skimping on Helm is a choice, because you’re not going to be able to continue moving without better Thrusters!

That’s one side of my current issue with stat points. The other related point is that stats themselves only feel impactful to me in the sense that they allow me to equip better components, but the components seem to seriously overpower the stats. Take Computers for example, they add a small amount of Attack, right? A few points of Attack per point, I think? Meanwhile, even low-level computers can add +300-400 attack. So my investment in Computers didn’t feel impactful beyond just being able to equip the component itself. Or take Engineering, where it adds a small amount of energy/regen but nothing compared to a Battery or a Battery Recharger. I think this also contributes to my feeling that I’m just using crew stats as a way of equipping my next component upgrade.

This would probably be alleviated somewhat if I could ever find some friggin’ crew again! Seriously, I’ve been in a ridiculous drought of them and I’ve still yet to see a Drakk race spawn, so no option of buying them via planetary services thus far. This is in ~60 hours of playtime or so. I’m starting to think they are a myth. :)

Related to the above, I would love to see the random item you get on level-up changed to be an option of 1 of 3 items to choose from or something. That would certainly help with those droughts…

That’s a basic element of the design of items as skills. Not much can be done about it. If you think about it, most ARPGs give you items that are mostly junk (armor), with a couple of important items (mostly the weapon). The game is missing proc on hit and such though.

I don’t know what you can do about that, but you should always keep your crew as happy as possible. If you maintain their happiness in the 90s, they will gain XP very quickly and get more and more powerful.

That’s a great idea.

Fair enough! In my head I was thinking that all stats should be multipliers as opposed to flat values, which I think Tactical behaves that way? That is, instead of 1 Computer -> 3 Attack (or whatever it is), each point of computer would add a percentage to your attack. So a higher Computer stat would buff your +200 attack computer to be a +280 attack computer, for example. A ship with high Engineering skill would get more mileage out of that Shield component, but every ship should be able to put on a shield or bolt some armor on. If you eased up stat requirements on components, this would allow any ship to equip that component and get some use out of it, just less use than someone who focused in that area and I think it would allow me to customize my build more than I can now. I haven’t thought it all the way through, though, just kickin’ around some ideas in my head.

That’s… a really really good idea. It makes no sense that only damage is a multiplier.

Mr. Peeler drops a big ol’ TODO on the forums! I can’t highlight any bullet point because I’m just starting to go through it now.

http://www.soldak.com/forums/showthread.php?t=38490

EDIT: Holy cow, that list is massive. I do note the disclaimer that these are things being considered, not a list of things that will happen.

Really excited to see how things progress. I like the game quite a lot now and if just a fraction of the items I’ve seen so far end up getting implemented I think it’s going to get substantially better!

Hah! Okay, this scenario never crossed my mind. From the upcoming 0.808 patch:

Nice catch! I didn’t even know that could be a thing. :)

That’s code from our fantasy games making it so you are more likely to be hit if you are attacked from behind or for that matter if you are attacking someone else from behind (like when coming out of stealth).

Ahhh, that makes sense! You know, I have your latest Din’s game but I was so busy and distracted when it came out I never really got a chance to dig into it. Your comment reminded me of that fact, I really should circle back around to it… but I’m having too much fun with Drox at the moment. :) Something that’s always bothered me in ARPGs is click-to-move so I love having WASD movement and the feel of flying around a spaceship.

Version 0.808 is out: changes.

This patch makes resurrection much safer, makes defense more reliable, fixes some problems with Guild quests, makes it much easier to complete rebel quests, and fixes several other more minor issues.

I must be missing something here. Every ship I use gets slower and slower. To the point that flying around is too tedious. I look for +thrust everywhere but it seems to be very rare. What simple thing am I missing?

You need either a better engine (heavy), thrusters (medium), or injectors (light). I don’t upgrade Command until I have a way to keep my speed up.

Sounds like you’ve just had a bad stretch of RNG. I’ve had that as well, it’s what prompted me to suggest that on level-up it would be nice to be presented with a choice of items instead it just getting one random one.

That makes sense. Thanks.

Edit: It’s like night and day. Thanks again for the great tips.

Damn @KevinC this is a whole new game. And it shows me what I was doing wrong in the first game. Leveling up command whenever I could. This should be the first thing that you see when you boot up the damn game. It’s not like you get a manual anymore. :) So many thanks. I’d offer to buy you a beer… but I live in Florida.