Done until Minelaying and sweeping are fixed and there are alliance features

After experiencing the effect of the changes in both minelaying and the lack of adequately matching mine sweeping to the mine laying, nor any indication that this will be fixed, I’ll bow out of this round of testing until it’s fixed AND we have alliance features. I’ve documented my suggestions and comments on what’s wrong with it the way it is now, and instead moving forward and making things better, it is now much worse and the game is not playable.

I will watch the forum for updates. This game has great potential, but right now it’s badly broken and not worth my loss of sleep trying to compensate.

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Sad to read this but it sums up my own feelings pretty well.
I want to play
I want to test…
But its so screwed up right now and so many things I personally felt were great additions to the game are now AFK, not to mention the fact there is very few folks near me I could interact with…

If your toughing it out and having fun you have my utmost respect!

I am toying with the idea of a reset but with the issues mentioned not sure that’s going to be anything other than frustration city…!

Can we PLEASE at least have an update on the progress of alliance features?

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I can sympathize with Morri completely. Mine Laying and Mine sweeping are badly broken. This along with the lack of alliance features makes it very difficult to coordinate during war.

To those still playing, if you drop multiple minefields in the same area on top of one another, you can force the sweeping into several hours. I didn’t know how helpful this would be, but I was about to be invaded so I decided what they heck. The invasion occurred last night and though I don’t remember how many were active, the invader used 3 sweepers and it took almost 3 hours for the entire field to be swept.

Though the invader occupies my system at present, they can’t invade the planet due to the large military and multiple OBD systems (kudos to the devs for this improvement for defense) I have, but they can block me from using it. Hoping at some point they tire of not having use of the system, as their main area is a long ways away.

Hold the phone…

Did you just say that with multiple minefields you in effect returned to where we started a year or so ago; with a Minesweeper taking an hour per field…? May I ask how many fields were overlapping…?

But… doesn’t it take 8 hours to drop a minefield on base tech? If so then it appeared you effectively said :

Sweeping time is back to normal but I had to expend 8x effort with multiple fields to achieve it…

Please do your best to explain as I am sitting here with my mind blown…

I don’t remember exactly how many minefields were active, I’m logging now, but I think at least 4 or as many as 6. Sweeping a single minefield with a T2 sweeper with one sweeper now takes an hour, before the patch it was 12 minutes. So you can do the math. My opponent had 3 sweepers and it took about 3 hours, so there may have been as many as 9 to 12 minefields. I had kept laying them one on top of each other sometimes in groups of 3 at a time as I had 3 mine layers in the system for a while, only one at the end which perished when the system was invaded trying to get one last minefield laid, hoping to catch the opponent unawares. I didn’t know if doing so would be useful or not. If I had not done this it would have taken about 15 minutes for the 3 sweepers to clear a single field.

It takes 4 hours to drop a T2 or T3 minefield with the latest patch.

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The issue with minesweeping not working as expected (sweeping 4 times faster) was finally found and fixed today so it will be in the next patch (we haven’t set a date for this yet but it won’t be too long - I’ll post details as soon as I can confirm when). Apologies that this issue wasn’t fixed sooner.

This fix aside, we’re still considering what else to do with mine warfare. Minesweepers have been working 4 times faster than expected, which was made even more unbalanced with the recent patch that increased the time it took to lay a minefield. So no one has had a chance to test it working as intended.

There have been comments/suggestions including separating minefields into different categories to focus on planetary defense or deep space, but our preference is to try to find an acceptable balance within the existing mechanics for now because there are other areas of the game that also need attention. There were also comments on the way minesweepers stack. If we did remove stacking, we’d have to remove the stacking effect of laying minefields on top of each other, otherwise it would be possible to form impenetrable barriers around systems/planets?

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As long as you can stack minesweeping, you need to be able to stack minelaying. At 4 hours to sweep with one T2 sweeper, the way they currently stack would reduce 4 hours to 1 hour, etc for each set of 4 sweepers used. And in the current war we are involved in, this is entirely possible and difficult to defend against quickly, especially because of the lack of alliance features where if an ally were to assist we’d be sweeping the mines in order to survive. Not to mention limiting our defender fleet size to what can accompany a vette. For me that is 3, because I’m PR. Difficult to do more than damage the Mankind fleet of 5 (excluding the vette for both counts). So in the situation of must kill the sweeper, I go for the vette and expect to lose my ships in the end.

Understand these sweepers being used are well defended with BS there to defend the vette sweeper flag.

In the current seige on Puma’s system (which is occupied at present) 8 sweepers defended with BS were initially sent. We managed to eliminate 5 of them before they could arrive. Puma lost most of her defender fleets in the process, either to the sweepers or the accompaning dread fleets and didn’t have sufficient left to finish off the last 3 and I could not assist once they were in the minefield, because I can’t cross into it. So we let it go and allowed the system to get occupied because Puma was confident they couldn’t actually take the planet.

And you can try all you like to find that balance leaving it the way it is, but it won’t be found. They do need to be separated. The way it is you create problems both at the system defense level and in open areas, not to mention the extra fleet count needed to defend multiple systems with minelayers, which is another fleet and we all have fleet limits. In a war you need one at EVERY system.

In systems you need them to be high strength, say T1 500, T2 1000, and T3 3000 and take the appropriate time to sweep with regard to their strength, not just TIME.

In open areas or unoccupied systems, they would be laid by minelayers and should be more like T1 100, T2 300, T3 500. So at T1 they can destroy small T1 and vette ships, T2 can destroy T2 ships (not incuding the vette which can be destroyed in T1 MF) and T3 can destroy all except BS, Cruisers and Dreads that have been properly designed with enough structure to survive with damage. These should be laid quicker (the original 1 hour is fine) and swept in a TIME again relative to the MF’s strength, not TIME.

This is an old picture of my “moat”, I’ve simplified it since this picture. Was necessary because my systems are concentrated in area and our opponent is only 6-12 hours away at w3/w5. If we had good planetary minefields, I wouldn’t need to do this to keep the enemy from getting too close too fast.

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And minelayers should have to stop to actually sweep mines. Cool with them moving through minefields i suppose, less so with hauling a fleet of non sweepers, but they should not be able to focus on flying through minefields avoiding getting blown up and effectively clearing the field all the while. I think only ships with sweeper modules or capable of mounting them should be able to fly through mine fields with a sweeper.

No, so long as they have the mindset that it takes 5 sweepers 4 hours to sweep a minefield that took 4 hours to deploy. a 5 to 1 ratio, I think we are good.

This allows a minefiled to last 20 hours if there is only one sweeper. If you allow minelayers to stack also then fine you can drop a minefield in an hour but you have zero protection while you are offline and that means you as a single person require 4/5 fleets…

If the difficulty to sweep a field increases on each research level that would be as good as you could reasonable reach…

One thing that they should do is only allow a minesweeper to sweep ONE field at a time and not multiple overlapping fields, if you lay a very heavy density mine cluster then you would expect it to last much longer…

And an alliance with 50 sweepers commanding the area its not reasonable that the minefields should last long. so stacking must remain, if they remove that then this is just going to be BS…

This is referencing minefield stacking not minesweeping. If you can take down a MF that takes 4 hours to sweep in 1 hour or less because you stack the sweepers then why lay mines. It’s a waste of time and you can’t defend like that. It doesn’t take 5 sweepers 4 hours to sweep one minefield not stacked. The sweepers stack and the MF is taken down in 4 hours for one sweeper, but less for each sweeper you add at the same rate of decline. So if sweepers stack, MF must be able to be stacked to compensate.

I am generally fine with this, if both ML is 4 hours (no stack) and sweepers are limited to one (no stack) then it’s fine. But they aren’t, sweepers stack.

And MF need to be separated. Those for systems vs those for open area mine warfare. Open area mine warfare is useless right now because of taking 4 hours to lay mines.

And sweepers need to not sweep all MF density the same. A field with a 100 strength density takes the same time to sweep as one that is 1000 strength density using the same sweeper, that’s not realistic.

Then laying a MF is useless period.

Well at scale it should be… 10 players converging onto a one minefield should take 10 times less time to sweep it… If we secumb to the notion that a minefield should last 4 hours regardless of how many people are sweeping it then the game will be laughable…

You didn’t read what I wrote regarding two different types of minefields then did you? Nor did you read that the time shouldn’t be based on “time” it should be based on the strength of the minefield. A minefield of 100 strength density should go down faster than one that is 1000 strength density.

AND we need two different types of minefields. One for systems that is stronger than the ones laid by ships.

If everything is kept as it is, it is useless to use them as you are describing them.

You do realise that what I said in effect was that the rate of sweeping should be less… so 1 sweeper should take 20 hours to sweep a 4 hour minefield… This means that with sweeper stacking you need 5 sweepers to sweep a 4 hour minefield in h hours… This creates the balance… A player offline for 20 hours could still have their minefield when they come back on if it takes 20 hours to remove it.

The game needs to reward organisation… so if I send 10 sweepers at the 4 hour minefeld… after 2 hours its gone… and my forces can advance, that advancement might take 4 hours… Then i’m at either the next minefield boundary or the planet… 10 sweepers is a good commitment… so it takes 20 fleets to sweep it in 1 hour… and so on 100 in 12 minutes… the time difference is relatively low 12 minutes/1 hour… but the commitment is much greater…

Let’s agree to disagree and I don’t think you understand what I’m saying that sweeping should be Dependant on the strength of the MF, not time itself. I’ve been fighting a MF war for going on 6 months now. I know of what I speak.

Look it took emarel and I 15 minutes to take down our opponents minefield AND they had fleets out trying to stop us. They couldn’t. And they had an equal number of fleets defending. That’s just wrong. At w9 we couldn’t be stopped.

I do think 4 hours is far too long to drop a minefield… I would of been able to walk through LordVictor much faster had he not been able to drop a minefield close to me… I had around 20 fleets of sweepers that I would suicide on any and all of his corvette fleets regardless of outcome. if he needed 4 hours to drop a field then I would of easily walked my dreads 4 hours closer to him in steps… and faster 7:1 fleets would easily be able to attack a dreadnought minelayer fleet (not that he had any)… So with 4 hours the minefields game is pretty much over and will provide no defense, and removed a huge level of strategy.

I think this is a CRITICAL mistake by IDA… @joe

This is the change they needed… and I’ve add in how it could be scaled in the future… right now they cant scale it…

  • Minesweeping: increased the time it takes to sweep a minefield
    • Level 1 sweeper rates
      of a Level 1 fields to 20% per hour (5 hours)
      of a Level 2 fields to 10% per hour (10 hours)
      of a Level 3 fields to 5% per hour (20.0 hours)
      of a Level 4 fields to 3% per hour (33.0 hours)
      of a Level 5 fields to 2% per hour (50.0 hours)
    • Level 2 sweeper rates
      of a Level 1 fields to 25% per hour (4 hours)
      of a Level 2 fields to 15% per hour (5 hours)
      of a Level 3 fields to 10% per hour (10 hours)
      of a Level 4 fields to 5% per hour (20.0 hours)
      of a Level 5 fields to 3% per hour (33.0 hours)
    • Level 3 sweeper rates
      of a Level 1 fields to 33% per hour (2 hours)
      of a Level 2 fields to 25% per hour (4 hours)
      of a Level 3 fields to 20% per hour (5 hours)
      of a Level 4 fields to 10% per hour (10 hours)
      of a Level 5 fields to 5% per hour (20 hours)
    • Level 4 sweeper rates
      of a Level 1 fields to 30% per hour
      of a Level 2 fields to 25% per hour
      of a Level 3 fields to 20% per hour
      of a Level 4 fields to 15% per hour
      of a Level 5 fields to 10% per hour
    • Level 5 sweeper rates
      of a Level 1 fields to 50% per hour
      of a Level 2 fields to 40% per hour
      of a Level 3 fields to 30% per hour
      of a Level 4 fields to 25% per hour
      of a Level 5 fields to 20% per hour
  • Minelaying: increased the time it takes to lay a minefield
    • Level 1 : 30 minutes to lay
    • Level 2 : 60 minutes to lay
    • Level 3 : 90 minutes to lay
    • Level 4 : 120 minutes to lay (future scalable => 1500 damage)
    • Level 5 : 150 minutes to lay (future scalable => 2000 damage)

Fleet with multiple minelayers, drop the most advanced field.

Then smaller less damaging fields can be laid that can annoy can be dropped lin less time, these allow dropping and no ship can close in time to hit it… Adding a large strategic element to the game not less.

overlapping minefields would still be swept concurrently.

I would also make each iteration of sweeper module 5 times more expensive than the last.

COTP has already mentioned how crazy the changes are and we’ve been at the frontend of some serious hardcore battles especially against @Belisarius.

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That is pretty close to what I said is needed. You just put numbers to it. I still think that system fields should be laid by OBD and go as high as you described starting at your T3. Open area from ships your T1 to T3 only.

I haven’t seen any substantial comments by others regarding the latest changes. I saw ones regarding the beginning of the A3 testing unless you did so privately.

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I think mine warfare is fairly niche. especially at extreme levels. I think its only happening at high alliance level and I’ve only seen COTP (with Belisarius) and Destiny really engage in this space.

I had posted to @mel some time about about having larger radius of minefields and a planetary deployment system could work in the following way. A planet would deploy a minefield every 7 days automatically with a radius of 10 LY and with a damage of 50 per ship per 6 minutes. The sweeping might aligned as you say to a level 3 minefield (from the changes I added previously) So a level 2 sweeper would require 10 hours to sweep it (Level 2 sweeper rates : of a Level 3 fields to 10% per hour (10 hours))