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Topics - Captain Phil

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Feedback and Suggestions / New Defensive Buff tool
« on: February 15, 2014, 11:00:15 pm »
Disable is the meta at the moment, and as an engineer there is nothing you can do except bring a mallet and hope your gunner has better aim then theirs. To help remedy this I have decided to try to come up with a new buff tool that focuses more on defense then offence, basically the opposite of the current buff hammer. The whole concept for this is to allow an engineer to have another item to choose from to bring into battle. The design for the tool can be anything, maybe Muse can bring back the very old buff tool model that was in before it got changed to a hammer. So, what does it do?

The tool will be able to reduce the damage a part of the ship takes. However, it will not protect components from fire damage and impact damage. Also, it will just apply the same armor increasing buff to the hull as the last one does. Don't want to be messing with that.

Other notes to consider: will it be a good idea to have it stack with the current buff tool, or as soon as you start buffing a part with a different tool it resets. (yellow bar for Productivity buff and blue bar for Defense buff) Will giving this buff the ability to pre-buff or even buff a part even when it is broken a good idea? (I think so, pointless to have a defensive buff if you cannot even keep a part up long enough to buff it.) Damage reduction: What will parts get for reduction bonuses and duration, Example: Guns 30-50% reduction for 60 seconds, Balloon 20% 30 seconds, Engines 30-50% 60 seconds. And whether or not it can be used to reduce damage taken from pilot tools.
***All numbers are placeholders and are not to be taken seriously***

Alright, Discuss, Is this a good idea, what are pros and cons you can see, and compared to the standard buff kit when would you take this over it, if you would. If this is not what you would envision for a defensive buff tool, what is?

Been attempting to fly the galleon of late, and every match has ended in disaster. The ship is no longer what it used to be, an imposing ship that requires a lot of tactics and skill to approach and take down. Now, people see a galleon and go, "free kill." The Galleon is big and slow making it an easy target, the weapons are so far down below the balloon that you cannot do much vs. a Hellfish, and you are easily countered by someone going Mobula with the lousy merc/X2 arti build. And, even if the ship builds and map is in your favor, getting all 3 of your crew to shoot the guns the way they need to be shot is near impossible.

So, What are the problems that I see with the galleon.
1: The heavy guns. These are big, bulky, and very hard to keep in full repair. Sure the goldfish has the heavy gun, but the goldfish only needs that one heavy gun since it has the high mobility to compensate for the gun's weakness where the galleon cannot reposition as easily. Spire is kind of the same way where you can easily reposition by simply reversing (fish can do this too) and can have the 2nd engi on the lower deck help keep the gun repaired. The galleon is also heavily reliant on ALL of its guns where the fish only needs the one and the spire can get away with the Pilot taking the top gun for a bit while the ship reverses itself and engis can keep repairs. And for the last part of this section, the guns are hard to shoot on a galleon. On a goldfish or spire it is a lot easier to shoot at a target when you are moving forward or backwards rather than from a galleon's broadside where the guns are moving side to side for the gunner, making it very hard to make precise shots. Sure, you can 'hold still', but that just makes it easier for your guns to be taken out. There is also the factors of; Getting consistent shots, getting those important shots in when armor is down, properly aiming your gun to disable enemy guns trying to take your guns out, and all the while trying to keep the guns repaired and shooting. One person may be able to pull it off, but not all of your crew.

Questions regarding guns: Where are you guys in agreement and disagreement regarding the heavy guns of the galleon also being one of its major banes? As a gunner, do you find it easier to shoot a Fish's gun then a galleon's?

2. Ridiculously slow mobility in all four directions: The galleon is a slow ship but it is ridiculously slow to the point where if you lose the advantage for a moment (all it takes is one hwacha miss, had that happen several times) you lose the battle. Alongside with all 5 of the main guns to keep up, the galleon pilot will have to be burning engines almost constantly to keep up in a close range brawl, thus increasing the difficulty of up keeping the ship. This is not mentioning the galleon's slow response to altitude change. So many times where I have managed to gain the advantage on an enemy ship to have them just quickly rise up and get out of my gun's poor arcs. They can keep shooting me of course. And there are items to help, but you can't bring Claw, moonshine, hydrogen, and chute vent together. you will be missing out on one aspect and you will be punished for it.

Questions on mobility: What items do you bring with what guns as a pilot, and do you find yourself easily out positioned even with your mobility items? As an engineer, how difficult is it to keep all 4 guns functional, shooting, and keep track of the engines all at the same time?

3. The size and location of parts on the galleon: Galleon is the biggest ship with the biggest guns in the game, and all that means is that it is going to make it so much easier to shoot at you and disable you. All of the engines are out in the open and in the back for free pickings, the guns sit there saying, "Please shoot me," and your balloon is massive and far from the protection of your own carronades. Oh, and that hull, a nice big target for a hwacha to come in and ruin your day by breaking all of the hard-to-repair guns and engines.

Positive sides of the ship:
1. The guns: You have the biggest guns in the game and two on each side to match. If you manage to get good shots where and when they need to be, you will devastate other ships in a heartbeat.

2.Hull armor and health: The galleon is the only ship in the game that cannot be one clip killed very easily. But this mostly means that it will only take longer for you to die when you lose the advantage. This can also be taken as the galleon's only decent use is as a meat shield.

Questions on positive aspects: What other bonuses do you think the galleon has, and dose it and the ones I list have many downsides to go along with it?

Final thoughts and conclusion: All of this is my opinion on where the galleon sits in current meta,  and that is right next to the squid. The galleon is far too hard for 4 people to up keep, the guns are a pain to shoot, and the ship can easily be out maneuvered. There are simply too many down sides and variables when it comes to crew members for the galleon to be considered a good pick. This means that the only time you should fly a galleon is with your own clan mates who know how to operate the guns on a galleon, and know what to do on it. To me this is unfair since the galleon is the only ship that requires this much planning to even think about using with 99% success. A pyra you can easily say, "gunner on top right, one engi on lower deck and the other on balloon and left gun." Can't rub a pub crew on a galleon like that, I have tried to run a galleon with pubs all day one time, did not win a single match unless the teams where ridiculously stacked in my favor. (Ally still did most of the damage.) And sometimes even with a good crew, it still ends up as a disaster.

Question Recaps:
1: regarding guns: Where are you guys in agreement and disagreement regarding the heavy guns of the galleon also being one of its major banes? As a gunner, do you find it easier to shoot a Fish's gun then a galleon's?

2: on mobility: What items do you bring with what guns as a pilot, and do you find yourself easily out positioned even with your mobility items? As an engineer, how difficult is it to keep all 4 guns functional, shooting, and keep track of the engines all at the same time?

3:positive aspects: What other bonuses do you think the galleon has, and dose it and the ones I list have many downsides to go along with it?

4:Final question on Galleon: Where do you think the galleon sits in the Meta? Do you consider the galleon a difficult ship to Pilot/Crew? And, do you think the galleon needs some love (squid does too, but later on that one) and if so, what do you think can be changed to help the galleon become easier to use and/or not so easily beaten as it currently is.

And just in general, just give thoughts on what you think about the ship in general.

Feedback and Suggestions / Clan sub section under Social tab
« on: August 31, 2013, 05:59:43 pm »
Just a simple suggestion here, under the social tab there can be a "clan" grouping that shows you a list of every player with the same clan tag as you do. This will make it so you do not have to fill your friends list with everyone in your clan. Another possibility is to be able to send global messages to the rest of the clan with this (can be turned off.) This will make it easy for captains to send a call out to all clan members currently on, so he can get a good crew together fast without having to message one person at a time. Another possibility is when you click the "clan" button, the social screen shows a list of current clan captains, what ship they are on, and an option to pick a clan ship and join from there. Any thoughts? This should make communication with clans easier and allow clans to get together more often.

Feedback and Suggestions / Tutorials NOT optional
« on: August 14, 2013, 01:39:01 pm »
Alright, my friend just got done with a game and a player on the ship he was with had no idea what was going on because he was new to the game like a lot of people. My friend tried to tell him what to do, but he himself was busy trying to battle the other enemy ship so he could not baby sit and teach the new person. After the game he messaged me, "How are these people not knowing how to play? There is a tutorial, can you yell at the devs to make it mandatory to do the tutorials before they play?"

And that is the suggestion here, make it so new players have to do a tutorial before jumping in their first game. I personally think this may be a bit overkill, and all we need to do is have a way to inform people who are entering the game for their first that that it is highly recommended to do the tutorials before entering a game.

What do you guys think?

Been playing a lot of CP maps lately such as Labyrinth and Angleans. And it has come to my attention that the points are too easy to defend with the long countdown timer. As soon as the enemy ships killed me and my ally I was already back blocking the point before they could un-capture it. Another incident that keeps coming up is when one fleet finally defeated the other, they cannot un-capture the point quick enough to save the game, as soon as that timer is 50 seconds away, you loose. The best way to handle this in my opinion is to reduce the time it takes to un-capture a point while keeping the time to capture an uncontested point the same. This will allow teams to make last minute saves when the clock is running low but give the other team time to try to save the point again. This will also allow for new tactics in crazy king maps where a squid can come in for those last 100 seconds of a point and quickly uncap it and move on to the next point.

This is a change that will make CP maps even more fun and easier for ships on the attacking side of the match. it will also nerf squids a bit on the KotH maps.

What do you all thing of CP maps currently? Are they fine as they are or do they need a change? Will this idea work or will something else need to be tweaked.

Feedback and Suggestions / Boiler Room in Skirmish Mode
« on: June 02, 2013, 08:47:16 pm »
A while back, the idea of a boiler room was mentioned about being added onto the ships for adventure mode. The concept of the boiler room is that a player would be able to change the flow of power throughout the ship to give benefits to different parts of the ship while reducing the effectiveness of other parts. I liked this idea and decided to come up with my own interpretation of the boiler room and how we could get it into skirmish mode without breaking the game and still giving it a new dimension. In current meta, as soon as you get a gat/flak combo on you, or your balloon is being camped, your dead. My boiler room concept will allow pilots to be able to escape those hard to escape situations more easily without rendering current meta tactics useless.

On each ship there is a spot made for five valves that regulate the power throughout the ship and a reset button. Each valve will have 5 different settings; 1: almost no power, 2: power drained, 3: normal (this is what everyone is flying on right now), 4: added power, 5: power at full. When all valves are at 3 you will have no spare power to distribute. Using the same helm keys that you use on the throttle, a player can reduce the power from one part of the ship and then transfer it to another part. The reset button can be pushed to automatically set all the valves back to 3.

Now for the example: The captain calls out for more power to the engines to get to their ally faster. Since the balloon is not needed at this point, the engineer drops the power from the balloon to 1 and raises the main engine's power to 5. Once they meet up with their allies, the engineer presses the reset button to restore power back to the balloon.
Now as for the effects of reduce or increasing power to different parts of the ship.

Guns: First off, in no way should increasing power to the ship’s weapons should increase the d.p.s. of the gun (reload speed, fire speed, or damage.) The whole idea of my concept is to allow ships to get out and survive sticky situations, not make you kill things faster since that would negate the whole point of a boiler room.
1: -80% turn speed and -20% slower reload speed. 2: -40% turn speed and -10% reload speed. 3: normal. 4: 10% faster turn speed and 10% of the gun rebuilt automatically when it is destroyed. 5: 20% turn speed and 25% of the gun rebuilt automatically after it is destroyed.

Hull: Same concept with the guns in not trying to break the balance of the game by allowing one ship to become ridiculously OP when you stick the power on full, but still allows the pilot to survive longer.
1: Cool down time for repairs increased by 20% and 20% longer rebuild if the hull armor is destroyed. 2: cool down time increased by 10% along with the rebuild. 3: normal. 4: 10% more hull armor. 5: 15% more hull armor and hull is 20% rebuilt aromatically after it is destroyed.

Engines: Self explanatory, but there is a valve for both your turning engines and your main engine.
1: -80% engine output. 2:-40% engine output. 3: normal. 4: 10% engine output and 15% more health. 5: 15% engine output, 20% more health, and 25% rebuilt automatically after part is destroyed.

Balloon: once you get a very skilled balloon popper on you, you are basically doomed unless you get assistance from an ally. Adding power to the balloon should help make it less impossible to get out of that situation without making balloon popping tactics obsolete.
1: -80% vertical movement. 2: -40% vertical movement. 3: normal. 4: 15% vertical movement and 10% rebuilt after balloon is destroyed. 5: 20% vertical movement, 25% of the balloon automatically rebuilt after it is destroyed, and is rebuilt with 15% additional health.

*adding power to a broken part will not rebuild it by x%. Only when the part has the extra power to it before it is destroyed will it have that benefit.

And that is my concept on how a boiler room in skirmish mode will work. I personally would love to see what Muse themselves thought up on this subject and if they are still planning on trying to fit it in adventure mode. What do you all think about the concept of a boiler room in skirmish, my concept of the boiler room, what will it do to current meta, and perhaps your own concept on what a boiler room should do.
And thanks for reading this through!

Feedback and Suggestions / Disable Map Vote Button
« on: May 30, 2013, 04:54:17 pm »
While the map vote was down for a while, it was really nice to be able to stick to one map. This made it easy for the cogs teams to practice since we could just stick to the one map we needed more work on. While creating a new lobby, I suggest there to be a checkmark box that we can click to disable map voting for that particular lobby.

The Lounge / Silly Ideas That Would Break the Game
« on: March 31, 2013, 07:17:30 pm »
There was once a teacher I had who said, "No idea is stupid," and I would like to prove him wrong. This is the thread to dump any suggestion that would completely and utterly break the game (like boarding), or troll the living daylights out of the players. And who knows, maybe out of all of the silly ideas posted there may be some concept within one that would prove useful, or remind us why should be happy we such a great development team for this game. Now, start posting those rediculous ideas and get them out of your system!

I shall start off with the first silly idea,

The Ultra Cannon for the galleon. This massive cannon will replace all four heavy guns in the hull for a massive fixed cannon that has to be aimed by the pilot. The cannon can instantly destroy hull armor and squids, and with two shots can destroy any airship. Why a cannon like this? So we can ram our galleons into other ships screaming "AMERICA!" and promptly blowing them away.

Feedback and Suggestions / Ship Design Concept: The Carrier
« on: March 31, 2013, 06:27:58 pm »
The Carrier
In the game Guns of Icarus there were small aircraft to go along with the airship to give you a bad day; currently the developers are working on introducing biplanes into Guns of Icarus Online. We all know that biplanes will be in adventure mode, but how can they be integrated into skirmish mode without breaking current game play? The answer is a small compact carrier around the size of the galleon. The stats I have envision for the carrier is that it will have the armor and health close to around what the galleon has, and the airship’s forward speed will be slower than the galleon’s; however, the carrier will have a much higher turn speed to allow it to position its docking bays toward incoming planes allowing for quicker and safer landing. As for gun placements, a small gun on the port and starboard should be enough for a carrier.

Role of the Carrier
The carrier will fit in the current fleet as a support ship having ability to send up to two small aircraft to assist ally ships. Of course, depending on the load out of the small aircraft and the carrier itself will determine how the captain and crew will engage in battles. Two small aircraft that could be used by the carrier is the biplane, of course, and a helicopter.

The plane
The plane will have high speed and mobility that will allow it to dart around ships making them hard targets to hit. The plane will be fast allowing it will be able to get across the map quickly to assist an ally ship and back before it runs out of fuel were the helicopter would not be able to cover the distance in the timeframe needed. Yes, fuel system, will get to that later. Though the plane is fast, it does not have much health, so gunners will have to fly smart or be shot down quickly.

The helicopter
The helicopter will be a small aircraft that has better defensive stats then the small plane in exchange for mobility. The helicopter will be able to stick in an airship’s blind spot and dish out some decent damage. However, if caught out of positions, the helicopter will have a hard time escaping with its low mobility. The helicopter will be able to shine in defending the carrier from attacks, or charging into a battle with their carrier.
Combat system for small craft
Selection of Aircraft
Within the hold of the ship there will be two docking stations. In ship customization the captain will be able to change out which type of small aircraft will be in which section of the hold, and what weapon will be mounted on the craft. It will be important for your gunners to know what they will be using, so they can change their tactics and equipment accordingly.
Health, fuel, and permanent buffs for small craft
Like the guns on the airships, the small aircraft will have health points, and when the health points are depleted the craft will be destroyed. The small aircraft will have relatively low hp; about 125-150 for plane and 150-200 for helicopter: However, unlike the regular guns on the ship, the small aircraft will have a fuel bar within the craft’s display along with a compass pointing to your home carrier, and an altimeter. The fuel system will force the small craft to either kamikaze (not a good idea which will be explained in a bit) or return to the carrier to refuel and repair. The reason for a fuel system is to keep the planes balanced. If a plane had the ability to constantly harass an enemy ship, or fly all the way across the map so the carrier can hide in a cloud, it would be unfair for other airships. Introducing the fuel system will force the carrier to be close to its planes for faster refueling.

If a small craft is destroyed then it will have to be rebuilt within the ship’s hold like you would rebuild a gun. The catch is that rebuilding a small aircraft takes a long time (by long time I mean around a minute of hitting the rebuild station with two spanners), and thus is more time conservative to return to the carrier for repairs instead of crashing into an enemy ship.
Another idea to discourage crashing the planes is a permanent buff system. As stated before, I am trying to make it worth the time to return to the carrier when you are low on fuel or health. Even with the long rebuild, two or three spanners will still rebuild the plane fast enough to make it more time consuming if you took your time to fly back depending on how far the plane is out. So, to make it so that gunners will want to fly back to the carrier I came up with the idea of permanent buffs. Each time you return for repairs, the added metal to the plane’s battle scars will increase its durability. The gunner also gets the feel of the plane down; thus allowing him to fly the plane more efficiently and save fuel.
In other words…
The more hp you repair on return, the higher the hp of the plane will be for the next time the plane leaves. For example: you dock your small plane with 50 /150 hp remaining, after repairs the plane will now have 175/175 hp. staking up to an ‘X’ amount.
For fuel you will have an added duration of how long you can stay out. For example: you return with 25% fuel left. Now next flight out you will be able to stay out for an additional 15 seconds. These are just random numbers I am throwing out, but the idea is there
Damage reduction system for small crafts

The main issue with the small craft is that any heavy gun, and even some of the small guns would just one shot them, making the carrier just about useless. The easiest way that I could think of to prevent this is to add a damage reduction system to the small aircraft. If a single shot will do more than 50% of the aircraft’s current health, then it will only do 50% of the aircraft’s current health. If the small aircraft has less than 25% of its maximum health then the shot will do full damage and destroy the craft. This system will prevent the small craft from being instantly taken down just as they leave the carrier’s hanger by snipers. Another concept to add is making the small craft invulnerable when docked. Since the objective of the small aircraft is to be useful and not a hindrance to the operations of the ship.
Fixing up your plane on the go
Unfortunately there is only so much you can do from your craft’s cockpit. However if you happen to have a wrench or other repair tool you can give your plane 10% temporary hp. This dose count as maximum health, so if your plane is at 20% health and you do a makeshift repair to up its health to 30% the next howitzer shot you take will bring your craft down to 15% instead of 0% health. This temporary health will also assist in keeping your plane in good shape in sandstorms. If you fear fire more than gunfire then you can bring a fire extinguisher in case you come across any flamethrowers in flight. When your small aircraft is on fire it will do less damage, respond slower, and take damage; but you can still fly around and the fire will go out relatively fast so one burst of flame will not completely disable you until you return, but the plane will take damage from the fire, so getting the fire out faster is a good idea. (fun concept- kamikaze-ing with flaming ship sets airships on fire?)

Gunner tools
The gunner will also be able to use his or her different ammunition types except the lochanagar shot since it would destroy the plane. This will give the gunner the ability to make his attacks more effective against an enemy airship or small aircraft. Also they can use the heat sink coil to protect their craft from fire, and allowing them to bring a wrench with no risk.

Flying and Docking.
Starting out the small craft will spawn upon a rotatable platform. Once the craft takes off, it will have about 90 seconds to 120 seconds of fuel before the craft crashes and dies (would need actual game play to balance decent times out). Fuel can be conserved by using techniques such as gliding with the plane and keeping the engine for the helicopter on minimal thrust when hovering in a spot; though the helicopter will slowly descend with minimal output. Physics will also be incorporated within the plane; pointing your plane up will slow you down, and doing nose dives will speed you up. All of this is common physics and mechanics so I will not dive into it much.
When your plane or helicopter is low on fuel or has taken one too many hits then you will have to head back to the carrier for maintenance. If your carrier is taken out in battle, your plane will still be able to fly around. If you manage to though, you can return to the carrier since the carrier will not spawn another plane if that plane happens to be out. Also on the bright side, if your plane is destroyed after the carrier, then the replacement plane will automatically spawn, no rebuilds required. So yes, you can kamikaze your plane after your carrier falls with no penalty, but only then!
The crashing systems for the two small craft will work differently. The small plane will be destroyed instantly if it collides with anything, even your home carrier, so practice landing. Clipping your wing on something will also damage your plane significantly but not destroy it unless it is already at low health. For the helicopter, when you crash into things you will just bounce off. This will do a bit of damage to both the helicopter and the enemy ship. Note, you can also crash into an enemy or ally airplane or helicopter which would effectively destroy both crafts, so watch where you fly.
Another small idea to assist the carrier’s pilot to position the carrier correctly for an incoming plane is to have two lights by the wheel. If a plane is docked the light will show green, and if a plane is out the light will show red. This will allow the pilot make sure the incoming plane does not end up crashing because the docking bay she or he is trying to land in already has something in it.
Last bit for this section is just how the whole landing system will work in my mind, since this system will allow for a compact carrier. In the landing bay there will be two nets within the hanger bay on each side. The pilot will have to line up the plane and make sure both wings hit the nets. The nets will sling back slowing the plane down. Then the plane will drop on to a rotating platform where it will be turned around for departure after repairs. The helicopter will be able to fly in and drop onto the platform without having to worry about the nets. This is just my idea on how a landing system will work for the two craft; maybe someone else will have a better idea.

Game-play Theory and Balance of the carrier
As said before, the carrier will be able to excel at being able to support its ally ships with its small aircraft. I can view the carrier being able to push itself into the middle of the fray taking hits for squishier ships. The carrier can also stay in the back, hiding behind a galleon even, and sending out its aircraft for long range support. On Control point maps the carrier will have the ability to stay on a point and send out airplanes to assist ally ships in the capturing of other points. However, this can be dangerous since the carrier will be helpless if it is caught without its small aircraft to cover it. Also the carrier is even larger than the galleon, so managing to ram an enemy ship would be worthwhile. It may be annoying pealing all the squids off though if you manage to ram them. That would have to be the worst squid captain ever to get hit by something moving as fast as a kite.

Possible issues with the carrier
The balance of a game is always at stake when something new is added. Hopefully I gave enough ideas so if this ship and the small aircraft are added; the balance of the game would not be disrupted. The thing I am trying for is to have it so any ship can beat any ship in a one on one battle, and skill would be the determining factor. While the pesky helicopters will be getting in annoying places, the ship will still be able to maneuver fast enough to get the helicopter in firing range and deal with the threat quickly. And even if the carrier is as tough as the galleon and has more mobility with its guns (since its guns are moving around all the time) the carrier itself would be slow and can be chased down by carrondes easy.
Unfortunately I am not a professional designer of any sorts, but maybe Muse can use a few concepts and bring the idea of a carrier to life in this game. I am getting tired of hearing people crying over not being able to leave the airship (boarding), and while this is not anywhere near boarding, it will allow players to get off the airship once and a while for some epic dog fights, brining a new flavored to the battle field. You can check out the drawn designs on my deviant art, but I am sure Muse needs no help in creating a neat looking ship. And even if the ship may be broken in skirmish mode, keep in mind that it could work out in adventure mode.

Miscellaneous tidbits that I may have missed or cannot really fit in easily
-   You cannot cap points with the small craft; the carrier itself has to be on the point.
-   You cannot use captain tools (spyglass is an exception) when manning the small craft.
-   Captains can see the location of their planes on the map “m”

Please leave comments, try to bring up problems that may occur with this ship and/or anything within the mechanics I may have missed or misunderstood.
Thank you for reading this through. Credit for art designs goes to both me and my good friend Aaron. (The airship would like a galleon and a junker smashed together and the helicopter just would be a disaster without him.)

All the pictures -

-Captain Phil

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