Alpha 10 - EXP: SHIELDS

Discussion in 'Experimental Features Discussion' started by Hummel-o-War, May 14, 2019.

  1. Hummel-o-War

    Hummel-o-War Administrator
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    FEATURE OVERVIEW
    Shields are available for all vessels and for bases - in different protection levels. Please note, that these are not ‘bubble shields’ but are designed as an integrated layer on top of the individual building blocks. This means, even if you are inside a base, the shield is not a barrier, but active on ANY exposed block! Because of that, we call them ‘hull polarization shields’, adding a virtual shell with a defined value of Hipoints around your vessel or bases exposed areas. This of course also means that you or your opponent cannot add or remove or repair blocks or devices (like turrets) in the middle of a fight, as this this would feel like exploting the polarized hull protection. You will have to make a choice when to activate the shields and when to drop them. ;)

    The shields require a shield generator and pentaxid tank. While the Shield-HP are “loaded” by converting some amount of Pentaxid, the shields themselves of course need some significant amount of power when being activated and run. When the shield is hit by weapon fire, the HP will drop, but each shield has a recharge rate to counter that to some extent. When the shield is loading up the first time as well as when reactivating a formerly deactivated (but not nullified) shield, you need to consider a cooldown/activation delay. So you cannot simply have a shield shut down and reactivated in no time. But: The shield WILL conserve its HP level when deactivated, and offer the same HP level when being reactivated (of course not instantly, but, as described, after a short load-up time).

    QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

    Q: Can i config the shield devices in the public config?
    A: Yes. The blocks are exposed in the Config.ecf

    Q: Are there certain weapons that can penetrate shields?
    A: No. Or better: not yet. Currently ALL weapons are held off by the shield. There is only one slight modifier
    * Laser-Weapons do slightly MORE damage to shields compared to blocks/enemies
    * Bullet-Weapons do slightly LESS damage to shields compared to blocks/enemies
    * Explosive-Weapons do the same damage to shields, but they have their "splash damage" removed

    Q: Do you plan to add more and different levels of shields in the future?
    A: This is very likely, but depends on the feedback

    Q: Does the shield use pentaxid for being run or only when HP are loaded?
    A: Only for loading the HP.

    Q: Does the shield use more or less Pentaxid for the HPconversion at loadup or later?
    A: Currently it always uses the same conversion rate per % or HP restored (eg. for 10% it uses the same amount of pentaxid at start, mid or end)


    NOTE:
    As this mechanic is entirely new to Empyrion, the cooldown timers, the requirements in terms of Pentaxid-to-HP, the recharge speed and the hitpoints of the different shields in general are of course subject to change in an ongoing balancing with the goal to create a complementary gameplay to the armor blocks - not a replacement of either.
     
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    Last edited: May 15, 2019
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  2. MB2000

    MB2000 Lieutenant

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    Finally added shields, awesome.... Instant feedback- please add a hotkey option for shields. Further feedback will come when I have had a chance to test but this one jumps out at me immediately.

    -thanks
     
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  3. Jon2

    Jon2 Lieutenant

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    I think the shield comparison of hovers and bases make to take a base in pvp almost impossible now. The amount of HP the hover shield can have is just 2000, and the base is much higher. Before, we could destroy some turrets of a pvp base of other player, now with shields the way they are make any pvp hover lose all its turrets and other blocks and the pvp base will still be intact with all its turrets.


    One more thing, i didnt understand quite the logic of making the shield T2 not craftable. The player will just take the blocks around the shield T1, upgrade it to T2 and then close the shield generator around blocks again. It will just give more work.
     
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  4. banksman45

    banksman45 Rear Admiral

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    The Shields could be better. The hull polarization is understandable for Bases but for the Vessels I much rather see a bubble style shield that is only visual when after some weapons impact. During a ship to ship battle there are no real noticeable visual effects after a weapons impact . Which visuals are just as important to game like this as game play in my opinion. I know the devs care a lot of about what they view as exploits but sometimes you can go too far and take the fun out of the game If you're going to keep the hull polarization for ships then please make the shield more noticeable during a ship to ship battle. As of right now ship combat is kind of dull. Not many visual effects. . I was expecting ship shields to look more like the shields in this Unity demo.
     
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  5. geostar1024

    geostar1024 Rear Admiral

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    The biggest issue I have is the lack of stacking to increase SHP. Right now, it's just a one-and-done type of situation; if you have space for the shield generator, then of course you put one, because otherwise you don't have shields at all. There's no ability for a player to decide how much shielding they want, and whether it'd be worth making other sacrifices to fit in additional shield generators. It also means that larger ships are effectively at a disadvantage, particularly SVs that are the size of small CVs.

    Obviously, I'd have liked to see bubble-like shields as well, but as this implementation doesn't technically preclude them, perhaps we'll see them in the future.
     
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  6. banksman45

    banksman45 Rear Admiral

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    After doing some more testing of the shields or the hull polarization . I think the fact that players can't use the shield on their base as a barrier while it's activated defeats the purpose of having shields in the game period. You're only protecting the structure and not the player. So once you knock out a few blocks although the shields are up, you can still shoot inside the base. So why would a player use the shields instead of just adding another layer of combat blocks ? There is no real advantage to it besides adding a little protection to your turrets. I have a feeling using shields in this manner was done with PVPers in mind but even games where I played pvp you had to take out the shield generator or wait until shields were down to shoot inside of the structure. I could be alone in this way of thinking but shields being used in this way doesn't make much sense because in reality they're not offering any protection . Adding a shield generator in this game now is no different then adding a second layer of combat blocks on your ship or base. Which some players were already doing that. I believe adding shields should offer full protection over the structure and everything that is inside of it until either the shields are drained to maybe 10 to 15% where some weapons fire can pass through the shields or the shield generator is destroyed. I do not like to be too critical because everything else ELON does is awesome when compared to other developers but shields should offer way more protection than they do especially since they're going to take Normal fuel and Pentaxid just to activate the things. Which I've never heard of anything like that in any game. Usually the Shields draw power from the ships power not some special power source. When I imagined shields in this game I imagined something cool and flashy to play with but it seems like it's more about making sure PVP battles aren't "too hard" than it is about making the game fun and interesting.
     
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  7. geostar1024

    geostar1024 Rear Admiral

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    I agree about the Pentaxid requirement, though I'd note that the config file does allow that requirement to be disabled. To me, Pentaxid has always made more sense as a catalyst than as a consumable.
     
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  8. banksman45

    banksman45 Rear Admiral

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    I think the ship shields should use regular fuel only but I would even be ok with the Pentaxid requirement if it only used Pentaxid but the fact that you need Pentaxid to start the shields then once they're up they use your ship's fuels is insane. It makes shields for larger ships almost unusable . I agree with you that the current Shields system puts large ships at a huge disadvantage.
     
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  9. DarthMyrten

    DarthMyrten Ensign

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    Overall I think it's a very good change, but it would be nice if it would scale - maybe shield regeneration should be tied to for example max generator output available?
     
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  10. Hummel-o-War

    Hummel-o-War Administrator
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    Selfquote ;)

    Bubble shields are not feasible right now (due to collider and other issues) but not ruled out
     
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  11. ravien_ff

    ravien_ff Rear Admiral

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    I agree on the visual effects. They are hard to notice in ship to ship combat. Testing one of my AI patrol vessels I couldn't even tell whether its shields were up or not unless I got really close.
     
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  12. Kard

    Kard Commander

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    Haven't played with shield mechanics yet, just installed them. Wanted to monitor power draws as I did, which brings me to a quick initial gripe constructive criticism:
    Please restore the Battery (solar) power indicator to the main Control Panel. It was replaced with the Pentaxid meter. That's fine, we need it now, but please add the Battery level back to it. Narrowing up the meters a little to fit it back in is fine, you have the space.
     
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  13. Hummel-o-War

    Hummel-o-War Administrator
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    There still is a battery info, but now as a figure instead of a grafic.
     
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  14. Furious Hellfire

    Furious Hellfire Rear Admiral

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    Ok shields, great to see them finally !


    CV shield gens seem to be 3x3x3 in both tiers.

    This seems to negate the possibility of using them on most of my CV as I build generally small, class 1 class 2 CV.

    If you look at current small/micro cv available, 3x3x3 is not going to fit into a whole lot of them. Micro CV will have to become bigger.

    So I propose

    t1 2x2x1 this being smaller hp will suit a smaller CV vessel with its smaller fitting size (possibly make size class dependant, over size class results in dead shield, "Structure too large for a T1 shield" )

    t2 3x3x3 being more hp will suit larger vessel
     
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  15. Furious Hellfire

    Furious Hellfire Rear Admiral

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    I think the recharge rate of the shield could be made dependant on the amount of generators available, for example if the shield is in a recharge state but consumes less than 60% power usage during its recharge state, the shield could regenerate faster under fire once it is fully charged.

    Then when you lose a power generator and the shield recharge rate shows something like 84% usage when recharging instead of 60% or less, then the recharge rate could drop, sort of having shields that degrade with the loss of the power generators.


    I would like to consider another type of shield too for CV, travel shield.

    This shield device will act like a tank, it wont regenerate automatically but lasts a long time, maybe 500k hp.
    This one needs powering off in order to regenerate which takes a little while and drains a lot of pentax.
    You can not fire certain weapons whilst this shield is active
    You can travel with warp.

    Something the big miner ships can use when visiting pvp, or perhaps even a faction mothership in pvp.
     
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    Last edited: May 14, 2019
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  16. zztong

    zztong Rear Admiral

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    Is the Pentaxid fuel consumed over time when the shield is on, or is it consumed as the shield is called upon to stop damage?
     
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  17. geostar1024

    geostar1024 Rear Admiral

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    I don't think the size itself is necessarily bad; having to allocate non-trivial internal volume for the shield generator means you may have to make tradeoffs if minimizing ship size is important. Not being able to stack devices to increase shield strength is bad, though. Also, it's definitely possible to fit a shield shield generator into a small CV, as this one has a 3x3x3 space behind the bulkhead in the hangar (shameless self-promotion):

    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1707684924

    It's consumed to restore shield HP at a certain conversion rate, so no consumption when the shield is at full strength.
     
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  18. banksman45

    banksman45 Rear Admiral

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    But shields are a second layer of protection and the first line of defense. They are the first barrier you have to take down before you even get to the hull and what's inside of the hull. They don't replace the hull but they are their own barrier. The way the shields are used in this game they are more of a extension of the hull than actual shields. If someone takes out a few of my blocks then even if the shields are back up they can still shoot inside my structure. Which makes my shields meaningless. I guess I had my heart set on getting actual Sci Fi Star trek ish shields in this game but I see that's not the direction the devs want to go in. oh well..
     
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  19. Germanicus

    Germanicus Rear Admiral

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    reminds of the ever on going discussions .... Armor vs. Shields....always nice to read all the pro's and con's;)
     
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  20. geostar1024

    geostar1024 Rear Admiral

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    Admittedly, I don't know how the devs have implemented collision detection, but I'd assume that the bounding box is used to check if a shot would actually hit any part of a ship first before anything else. If that's the case, then it seems to me that simply using bounding box location (like the repairbay field does) would be an easy way to implement a bubble shield.
     
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