Minelaying and sweeping is still incredibly messed up. It takes all day for a level 2 sweeper to take down a minefield and yet opponents can still stack multiple fields on top of each other just by temporarily breaking NAP. This places a huge benefit to the defender. The basic mechanics of not allowing multiple sweepers to be activated in close proximity makes no sense. It is especially harmful because if you are trying to take down multiple fields, even one where your sweepers can operate spread apart, it is next to impossible to reactivate a sweeper. If that sweeper is still in a minefield it is stuck until you can move all the rest of your sweeping units far enough away.
You don’t have to break NAPs. You just have to turn off your minesweeper so you can’t see the other minefields.
It’s very broken.
Edit: Moved this post to Bugs, where it belongs.
So, I spent most of 12-13 hours running a minesweeper last night and today. I was ‘in range’ of 3 minefields, that originally were all somewhere under 50% (around 45 I think).
After 6+ hours (had to travel to the system), the 3 minefields were all between 20 and 25%. So 6 hours of running a 6% Tier 1 minesweeper did something like 20% of each. 6 x 6% = 36%, so that math makes no sense.
Anyhow, today I fired it up again from inside the system, again in range of all 3, and watched them slowly drop… 6 hours later (I had to leave the system, unwanted company was coming), they were at 6%, 13% and 16%. So 14% to one, 10% to one, and 8% to one, give or take. 32% in total, I guess that lines up to something resembling 6 x 6%. But it wasn’t consistent, or balanced, or anything else.
When will this patch get patched? It broke minefield warfare, in so many ways… and hasn’t been explained. And it’s seriously interfering with the ability to play the game as it’s supposed to be played.
And this particular player wasn’t even abusing the ability to stack minefields, as discussed above. This was just one system with a few minefields properly dropped around it (and one inside).
The next change we were planning for minefields is to remove the block on enabling minesweeping if another active minesweeper is close. And if more than one minesweeper is in a minefield only one sweeper would sweep it (if T1 and T2 sweeper present T2 would sweep only). So it would be possible to have multiple sweepers moving through the same minefield but only one would be actively sweeping it. The others would just avoid taking damage.
Regarding the issue with being able to stack minefields on top of an ally’s minefield, we’re not sure yet what to do. One option is to just prevent a minefield being laid if it would overlap any another player’s minefield?
I’ll run some tests on sweeping speeds on single and stacked minefields and if anything doesn’t add up will get the devs to take a look.
It really depends what you do with minesweeping. As we described above, a single minesweeper (T1 or T2) already has major problems with one minefield. If you have 5 allies stacking minefields on top of each other, which you can absolutely do (and I’ve heard reports of people doing it, but I haven’t seen it myself, yet), that player is never getting anything out of the minefield without a sweeper FS. Which is a really big problem for everyone that isn’t Ripchee (tiny little corvette fleet caps). Please remember that minefields can be used offensively as well as defensively.
Removing the block on minesweeper activation would be a step in the right direction, in my opinion.
Removing minefield damage inside systems would be another. And I thought one you already said was going to happen.
That would seem to make the most sense, assuming the client even has that information to make that kind of decision – you can’t drop a minefield if a minefield is already there, even if it’s not yours, even if you can’t see it.
Also, I heard someone say that you still sweep allied minefields. Maybe a good time to fix that while the devs are in that part of the code?
I haven’t swept any friendly minefields in a long time, at least not that I’m aware of.
Of course I never got a single notification for the 12+ hours I was sweeping the other day (described above), so it’s hard to say for sure. But I routinely run minesweepers where I know friendly minefields exist.
IMO, these is the best options.
Option A: All sweepers can sweep a single minefield per player, for example, player A sweeps player B’s and C’s minefield at the same time at its max rate but only 1. Player B has the edges of his minefields overlapping but player A cannot sweep both of player B’s minefields at the same time. Player A sweeps the minefield he was over for the longest before sweeping over any other.
Option B: all minesweepers sweep all minefields who’s centers are within X distance which is shown when it is turned on.
for both options, only the strongest minefield does damage but all player’s are notified if a player inside their minefield takes damage from any minefield. only the strongest sweeper sweeps, multiple sweepers cant sweep the same minefield, ect ect.
I like option B. Its much more simple and would allow player B to stack minefields without causing an exploitive situation while also allowing him to defend himself.
A way to do the “cant lay minefield here” is do the check for the minelayer is done serverside which knows where all minefields are that way it can avoid the whole issue of cant see minefield so must be none issue
honest enemies wouldnt be able to lay minefields on each other either, and 2 players could still lay a minefield at the same time…
If the check is server side 2 players couldent
This is good Joe. Will it work across races? I mean would one MS from each race resent still work?
If not why not (logically they will be using parallel but not identical Tech after all)
If so that’s good, If they can you could just be shifting the paradigm to having allies pair up which is OK as long as it doesn’t lead to solos being crushed by well coordinated alliances or ad hock coalitions suddenly holding all the Mine sweeping cards?
In the former case will those players whose MS is blocked by the operation of one get a message that “Sweeping is already happening to this Minefield” Not all players are online at the same time - or one day in the same alliance so a heads up will save wasted effort and frustration?
Stopping overlap like that would just mean that someone could spam Lv1 mines everywhere to stop you from mining, or stop someone else from mining them. With how cheap lv1 mines are, it seems a false incentive to abuse. Can’t we make it so that if there are multiple mines stacked on top of each other that the sweeper will clear all mines its touching (without splitting the rate per hour)? With the exception of NAPs or their own mines, which are built into the sweeping code already.
I thought about that, a player would be entirely unable to honestly use multiple mine fields to protect his area without multiple weak points. Its one thing to have spots that arent their strongest, its another when a player can reliably fly through and not get hit by a mine.
I think your suggestion would work. So the full changes we could make would be:
- It would be again possible to lay minefields overlapping each other regardless of density/owner (as it worked previously)
- If a fleet passes through an area covered by more than one minefield only the strongest minefield is taken into account
- Remove the recently added block on activating a minesweeper if another active minesweeper is too close
- But if more than one active minesweeper is in a minefield at the same time only the strongest sweeper actually sweeps the minefield
- If an active minesweeper is in multiple minefields at the same time it will sweep all of them equally at its standard sweeping rate
It would mean minefields can be laid on top of each other for practical purposes, but by enabling a sweeper to sweep multiple minefields at once this doesn’t become unbalancing?
Players would have to have anti-sweeper fleets in areas that have multiple minefield coverage and hope to be active at the time the other player attempts to sweep, otherwise, it’s quite the weak point of the minefield defense (effectively removing the series of minefields at twice the rate, or more).
Imo, this is an honest use of minefields and I would like to preserve at least some use of it. Otherwise, any overlapping coverage is a weak point.
That sounds ok, so long as it doesn’t take a million sweepers to sweep them.
Something else I’ve noticed though, is that sweeping rate is not correct. It appears to have diminishing effect.
I started sweeping a 10% minefield, and its taken 8 hours still, when it should have taken only 1 hour at a rate of 12%.
On your point, I’d probably say that you only need to lose 1 minefield in most cases to have a hole in your defence, so whether someone sweeps just one or multiple probably wont make a difference.
However from the sweepers perspective, they might be aiming to remove a specific minefield, so only allowing 1 to be removed my force them into double efforts if the correct one isnt prioritized.
Loosing 1 minefield at a time vs 2/3 is the difference between 8 and 16 hours of sweep. I generally cannot log into the game between getting up in the morning and going to work.
16 hours of sweeping? no thx