Blog: Galactic News - August 16th

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“You’ll be able to create ‘guarded zones’ around any of your colonies and assign one or more of your fleets to guard them. It will work similar to the newbie protection NPC guard fleets we added to the Awaken the Dark galaxy. Except you’ll be able to create these zones yourself and control which of your fleets defend them. Any enemy fleets moving into these areas will be automatically attacked – whether you’re online or offline!”

I hope you’ll have the ability to ignore fleets of scouts or corvettes, as they will be used to keep the guard fleet busy while real war ships go in to do their business.

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Also to advise everyone, SOLID is done for this go around with the ATD galaxy. For the others continuing to play enjoy. We are waiting for a new and much improved version next go around.

This. Hopefully we can set a priority rating. Where we can set the fleets to prioritize fleets of certain size. And or have the guards disengage if the enemy exits the zone, or if the fleet is too fast to catch up to.

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Great news about the guard zones but I have some concerns here.

What would happen if people set minefields at the borders of these zones and lure your fleets into them. Killing them for the risk/cost of a cheap frigate and some limbalt.

My suggestions/wishlist:

  • For this to be usable, guarding fleets must be immune to mine-fields.

  • Also for this to be really good I think the guarding fleets should have unlimited Olzyne, i.e. running at boosted warp at all times. This would also bring some more value to the under-used 7/1 engine.

  • And for this to be really awesome, fleets with cloak detect, would be permanently running.

But that is just my wishlist so you can have a rock solid offline defence :slight_smile:

For any guard zone to work you will need automatic minesweepers, cloak detectors, a plus 2 speed boost. Automatic refueling and reloading of Ordnance.

And even with all that they’re probably still just cannon fodder that will give away your location.

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I think the best way for the systems to work is to add territories and have fleets be able to defend the entire territory and adjacent ones (or be set to control an enemy’s area). Mine decting fleets could “defend” the territory from mines. Mine fields would fill the entire territory but would have to be laid close to the center and sweeping would work the same way, but otherwise unchanged. Automated refill of olzine and ordnance. I also wouldn’t be offended if there was an option that the automated fleets would switch between which fleet engages first.

In the first version it won’t be possible to configure what types of fleets to ignore. The size of a guarded zone would exceed the size of sensor range so the guard fleet wouldn’t be able to determine the fleet properties and use such a filter unless the enemy fleet was close.

If the enemy leaves the zone the guard will return to its position. Which is in orbit of the planet where the guard zone building was constructed. Guard zones are generated by constructing this building. Fleets can then be assigned to guard this zone via context menus (planets with a guard zone building will have an extra option e.g. System > Planet > Guard this Zone).

If a guard fleet has a minesweeper enabled, it will automatically activate it if it isn’t already active when the guard fleet is triggered. And if a guard fleet runs out of Olzine it will return to the planet and attempt to refill.

Example Usage:

  • You could assign 10 guard fleets to a guard zone on one of your planets that covers several of your most important systems (as well as leaving fleets in orbits also)
  • If 1 enemy enters the guarded zone, 1 guard fleet would attempt to intercept it (and activate its minesweeper if it has one), if 10 enemy fleets enter the guarded zone, each of the 10 guard fleets would attempt to intercept a different enemy fleet.
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This is a needed update, but we would lack the ability to do all of these things in an enemy territory while offline, most importantly, at the start of a war when none of your guard zones can extend to an enemy area.

This also appears to mandate that we must NAP our neighbors reducing the point of even having this function being that our neighbor would be able to sneak attack us eliminating our current defensive functions.

Also, please make it so that mine sweepers could keep their function activated at all times.

Additionally, we may also require notifacations anytime our automated response fleet is deployed. If someone is testing our boundaries and responsiveness, we would want to know.

Thanks for the explanation but this will be massively exploitable. Just send how ever many scouts into the zone and lure them into a minefield. The mine sweeper wont actually sweep the minefield because it will be chasing the enemy fleet. Joe, before this gets implemented make it so that you cannot lay a minefield inside the zone like we have in the newb defense zones. Or, simply have the mine sweepers go after any minefields instead of chasing the enemies fleets.

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Also something about overlapping guard zones and transportation paths and the ensuing accidental automated fallout. Imo, this is why we need territories, and attribute more functions to them.

If fleets chase out of the zone then all people will do is drop minefields just outside the zone and bait fleets into it.

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This won’t be usable in it’s first version then. As others have stated, until minefields can’t be laid inside another player’s territory, all that will happen is baiting fleets out to minefields.

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This all sounds like a great way to shine a bigger spotlight on minefields, so you can get even more feedback about the problems with them.

I look forward to testing it on Main 3.

I feel bad for the guys who will use this. Sets all his fleets to guard as he logs off for the night. Wakes up the next morning to all of his fleets dying without taking out a single enemy ship, also all the res from the wreckages taken by the enemy overnight.

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The thing with minefields is most if it could be avoided if they were visable to ships scanners rather then a module we have to turn on as a flagship. If they were visable ships could be programmed to stop, go around, and a number of other things.

Guardian fleets are going to offer little help to offline defense as they will just get baited.

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So this effectively means that this feature will only be usable for corvette fleets with minesweeper. All other guard fleets, without minesweeper, will be lured to a minefield, at the borders of the guard zone, and subsequently destroyed at little to no cost for the attacker.

Also, if you only set minesweeper fleets as guardians, the attacker will just use a DN fleet to take out the guardian fleets. Thus making this feature useless even if you only use minesweeper fleets as guardians.

Very disappointing that you are not acknowledging this obvious exploit/shortcoming.

I hope that the guardian zone can be set to a system only as that is the only usable way to use this guardian ability without getting baited and destroyed for no gain.

Actually worse than ‘little help’. With minefields you would be stupid to use this guardian ability as you would just lose fleets for no gain and little to no cost for the attacker. And in fact, as @BigBoomer pointed out, he would get the wreckage (assuming he killed you just before the minefield) and could even farm you. And to add insult to injury, you just gave away your position for nothing.

Sorry but this feature is not ready to be released. It is effectively useless in this form.

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The feature is fine in your inner areas, and for scouts in outer areas. Sure it wouldnt kill the whole minelaying fleet, but its not like you would have lost much. More intended to intercept and kill other scouts trying to pick off vulnerable transports.

I need auto sweeper before the guard fleets departure.
I think it would have a proper development cost performance for the first release of the auto guarding feature.

What do you mean with auto sweeper before? That a mine-sweeper fleet would automatically detect and go out and sweep a minefield within its guard area?