Proposed Frigate Rework

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Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Bennis- » 07 Sep 2019, 21:12

Dear Supreme Commander Enthusiasts,

I have been thinking a little about the frigate and want to propose a rework.

I make my proposal in the light of the following Observations:
Big naval battles on high level meta maps like Setons, or big ladder naval maps, turn mostly into frigate pathing fiestas and Destroyers and especially Battleship fall off in terms of efficiency in large scale naval battles.
I don't think this is enjoyable at all, because personally I would prefer that late-game naval battles are dominated and won by late-game naval units, i.e. : Battlship, with Destroyers, Subs and Cruisers / stealth boats / shields adding utility.

Currently, that is not the case at all., because the frigate simple has too much HP. Its too effective, you get too much HP buffer from frigates. On setons, many games are decided by 100 frigates running into BP, tanking any damage thrown at them by low DPS high tech naval, and shredding all BP until they die.
It mostly bois down to who can make more frigates in shorter amounts of time, and naval battles are often decided before the first T2 or T3 naval units died.
Is this nice gameplay? NO! not enjoyable at all!




I propose a drastic rework of frigates stats, to change their use ingame. The rework reduce their HP pool by -50% (-40%, -30%) while keeping all other stats the same, but increasing their AA DPS (proportionate to HP nerf, i.e.: +100%, +80% or +60%)
I would vouch for a 50% HP nerf and 100% AA buff change.





I will look at the different interactions frigate have with units ingame and see if that interaction changes in a desirable way.
Now what does this change:

1. Frigate as raiding tool versus structures such an mexes, naval facs or engineers: mostly unchanged.

2. Frigates against Destroyers and Bship: they will die much quicker now, and be less mass efficient. People will make less T1 naval fac and spam frigates, but instead make more Destroyer +Shield boat or Sub armies. And, of course, Bship will be much stronger and wont get swarmed by frigates anymore. They should dominate frigates, much like T3 tanks dominate T1 tanks.

3. Frigates versus Torpedo Bombers / Gunships: Of course, the balance here would tilt towards the already versus strong and versatile Torpedo bombers. In order to tackle that, I would increase overall frigate AA by a percentage that is the same like the HP reduction. That way, they would still be able to fend off torps or gunships in a reasonable way. They already almost instantly shoot down scouts. Their ability to kill bombers and intis would increase, but I think thats a good change. it would change their nature from a "bread and body navy workhose" to "utility support ship for raids and AA protection". How exciting!

4. Frigate versus ACUs
: having 2k or 1k hp doesnt really change the fact that ACUs just OC them anyway.

5. Frigate versus T1 Subs: T1 subs would get stronger, and I think thats a welcoming change.

6. Frigates versus Hover spam
:

T1: Spam would get stronger, and frigates were the natural counter to spam previously. I think this is one of the more crucial impacts of this balance proposal beyond changing navy compositions. But since frig. vs hover spam is very much a setons issue I dont think its problematic in the light of the overall exciting and positive changes this would bring.
T2: Hover might be able to outvalue frigates in terms of mass, but hover has no radar, no AA and dies easily to destroyers, so I dont think that hover would completely replace frigs. But this could be tested.

7. Frig vs PD: would make PD much stronger as a tool to defend against frig raids. This might be a problematic area, but overall this interaction is still relatively rare and I think its okay to make frigs weaker in this aspect, as they are mobile and can just raid where there is no PD present. Further emphasizes the "raiding and utility nature" if the new proposed frigates role.

8. Frigates against anything else doesnt rally matter in my view, as T2 tank - frig interaction do not matter to outcomes of 99% of games.



What do you think of my proposed changes? I would like to invite you to a fruitful debate based on numbers and a proposed vision of future naval battles, please leave emotions, and old school thought out of this debate.



Thanks and best regards,
Bennis aka Partiboi69
Last edited by Bennis- on 08 Sep 2019, 01:38, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby armacham01 » 08 Sep 2019, 00:44

Bennis wrote: frig. vs hover spam is very much a setons issue
If, for a fight between frigates and riptides, it was more mass-efficient to make riptides, some people might not even get into the water until they are ready to make T2 navy.

This would become an issue on every water map. Riptides/blaze/yenzines would be dominant because they don't even have to worry about subs and can take shortcuts across land to move faster or get away from T2 navy.

And we might see people supplementing naval groups with hover units. Zthuees would be twice as effective against frigates. If the meta changes to "make 1 yenzine and 1 zthuee for every frigate," naval battles are going to look really weird. This will significantly take away from the visual appeal, I think. Boats vs. boats has visual appeal. If half of the units on each side were actually hover tanks the game would not look so nice.

So we would have to consider making balance changes to hover units, as well. If the new frigates were still effective against hover spam, then these problems go away I think.
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Bennis- » 08 Sep 2019, 01:18

armacham01 wrote:
Bennis wrote: frig. vs hover spam is very much a setons issue
If, for a fight between frigates and riptides, it was more mass-efficient to make riptides, some people might not even get into the water until they are ready to make T2 navy.

This would become an issue on every water map. Riptides/blaze/yenzines would be dominant because they don't even have to worry about subs and can take shortcuts across land to move faster or get away from T2 navy.

And we might see people supplementing naval groups with hover units. Zthuees would be twice as effective against frigates. If the meta changes to "make 1 yenzine and 1 zthuee for every frigate," naval battles are going to look really weird. This will significantly take away from the visual appeal, I think. Boats vs. boats has visual appeal. If half of the units on each side were actually hover tanks the game would not look so nice.

So we would have to consider making balance changes to hover units, as well. If the new frigates were still effective against hover spam, then these problems go away I think.


Thanks for that post, I will add this consideration to my original post.

I do agree, that probably the early navy fight would change. Hover would be a viable alternative to come back after frigate lock. Which is very nice in my opinion. Comeback mechanism make RST more exciting and lead to more gyle casts.

On the other hand, I think that hover in its current state is a little underpowered anyway, so any frigate nerf would buff it, thats nice!

Yes it would _probably_ change the gameplay, as intended by any balance change. Hover still would suck very much against destroyers, so we would probably see more destroyers earlier, and maaaybe more early hover, and I think these changes are nice too.

I dont think its much of an issue, I rather see it as an opportunity to break the meta and freshen up gameplay.
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Azraeel » 08 Sep 2019, 01:24

Yea, I agree with this. I play a lot of Setons Beach and Rock. I always end up spamming Frigates early game at my rating and winning, because people tend to rush t2 destoryer but i just spam frigate and win tbh. Which shouldnt happen if im being honest. T2 and T3 should be on the battlefield late game not a 100 frigates. Frigates are so tanky and soak up so much damage. Like you'll be 30 minutes in spamming frigates still with destoryers and battleships in support xD ;)
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Apofenas » 08 Sep 2019, 04:33

Hover land units will obliterate frigates on smaller water maps like White fire, Open waters, Eye of the storm and land maps with water like Island zero, Tag craftious maximus. Not even speaking about High noon, Wilderness, Paradise, Four corners ect.

UEF frigates with 1060 HP (50% less) and 50 DPS for 280 mass aren't exactly a good counter to Blazes with 1100 HP and 50 DPS for 220 mass that can also get some shields. Even if Frigates would draw t2 hover tanks - they still can't follow them on land.

Doing this change will just result into Aeon/Sera winning those maps as a rule.

If frigate spam is a problem may be should do something about T1 subs being completely useless? EQ doubled DPS of t1 subs and that unit became especially good against ships without good torp defence. This way you'd just stop frigate spam with t1 subs and force enemy to focus on destroyers and t2 subs - pretty much your goal is achieved without fcking up balance on *other maps that aren't setons.

Make t1 sub great again!
BalanceVictim wrote:I tried it out, and yes, the anti-torpedo is a useful tool now. Sadly, the rest of the unit is still extremely weak compared to any other frig
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Viba » 08 Sep 2019, 13:17

Frigates are good as they are currently?

ofc. some minor fine tuning between the factions could still be done, but in general terms frigates are ok IMO ;)
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Little Miss Murder » 09 Sep 2019, 09:42

T3 ships and the Tempest should have the crush ability against T1 ships.

Battleships could also do with smaller ancillary weaponry to help deal with spam, something akin to the fattie's riot guns.
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby armacham01 » 09 Sep 2019, 10:51

Little Miss Murder wrote:Battleships could also do with smaller ancillary weaponry to help deal with spam
If battleships had a secondary weapon with a little more range than a frigate, but a lot less range than a destroyer, that would help to keep frigates under control. But maybe "frigates swarming a battleship" should be a legitimate strategy, because we want people to have to screen battleships with destroyers and frigates. We don't want a pure battleship navy strategy.

If destroyers were given a close-range weapon like that, for example the equivalent of having the guns of 2 frigates in addition to their main guns, that would make frigates less effective against destroyers. But there would still be an incentive to keep frigates around, and with enough frigates you could still swarm destroyers.

I don't see a reason why a pure destroyer force should be a bad thing. If someone wants to make 6 destroyers and move them as a pack, without frigate support, that should be a legitimate way to fight frigates. They are meant to destroy such things.
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Blodir » 10 Sep 2019, 13:55

Frigs are my favorite unit in terms of balance. They are useful throughout the game without making other units useless at all. I wish I could say the same for land and air balance.
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Re: Proposed Frigate Rework

Postby Bennis- » 10 Sep 2019, 18:13

Blodir I disagree: I think the risk of teching higher tier (Power and BP investment mostly) should be rewarded with a unit that is stronger over lower tech in terms of mass efficiency. Its a straightforward principle that you find in all areas of faf: pgens, tanks, planes, all. Just with frigates counterintuitively you dont have it and unaware players are tricked by that and lose to frigates (me).

I think thats counterintuitive and therefore should be fixed, much as the reclaiming mex thing is counterintuitive and should probs be fixed so peope spend less time zoomed in their base and more time microing their units.

change my mind.
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