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.