1) Font sizes, ok, I said the GUI is very purty.. it is. But for some people the font is too small (And that I can understand)
Yea, I like the GUI a lot, though overall the game really chugs even on my pretty high-power (except for the GPU, which is probably it) desktop so I don't get the smoothness you talked about. Font size seems fine to me, even on a 1770x1000 window (so really the text size it would be at my monitor's full 1900x1080 or whatever it is), but there's always folks who generally need/like bigger text.
2) Invasions/Blockades .. now this entire system is pretty daft, blockades can currently be spammed by just aiming at planets with direct flight and there is *NO WAY* for anyone to prevent that, short of having ships everywhere.
That system does need changing. On offense it's pretty annoying too: I think I had one system under "invasion" for like 50 turns, and the firepower I had in orbit (including a dedicated invasion dreadnought) could have done the job in 4-5 turns. But on any turn where an enemy fleet entered the system it didn't do any invasion rolls, and my enemy was spamming me with generally 2 fleets per turn (I dunno where they got enough industrial capacity and/or dust for that). I would wipe them out every time, but they'd just keep coming. Eventually I gave up on leaving their constellation alone and sent a couple battle fleets through the wormholes to cut off their main source of reinforcement and the planet I was invading fell the next turn (albeit with another reinforcement fleet coming through direct flight, but not in time).
I think the solution to that is fairly simple:
When an enemy fleet enters the system, if any of your fleets is on interception mode (all mine were, except the one with the invasion dreadnought) and hasn't already "acted" that turn (it seems each fleet can only initiate one combat per turn), it automatically attacks the enemy fleet that just entered. If the enemy fleet does not survive that combat, it does not count for blockading or invasion-stalling purposes.
On the enemy-blockading-you-by-direct-flight-spam I think it would probably just be a matter of causing influence area to slow down enemy direct flight. Warp Jamming or whatever. That way you would still have to deal with the tactic but with a combination of:
- Having influential star systems
- Having tech that increases influence/system-sensor-range
- Having firetruck fleets to kill the little stuff they're sending (if they're spamming you all over the place with full fleets then that's not really cheese, that's just sledgehammer); combined with the other rule I mentioned where if you intercept and kill them on the turn they "land" there's no impact on blockade/invasion.
I think it would be manageable.
3) The defense/attack calculations seem to be off by a barn.
Oh yea, balancing has a long way to go. That's why it's fun for me right now but if the balance stayed like this I wouldn't keep playing all that long.
But I have to say that building fleets where half the tonnage is the anti-kinetic deflectors, and fighting fleets that are entirely kinetic-based offensively, and playing the "+40% deflector efficiency" card in the first phase... seeing the enemy's initial deluge
of bullets fly at your fleet and curve off in sheets towards nothing in particular... that's quality comedy right there
4) Instant all-time-everywhere retrofit breaks the game, no need to go into detail about that ;P
Actually I think it's one of the better retrofit systems I've seen:
- You have to be in one of your systems.
- Obviously, you have to have researched whatever modules you put into the new design, so switching which part(s) of the "rock paper scissors" the ship is using offensively/defensively requires you to have put in the normal amount of research effort.
- You have to pay a fairly large amount of dust.
- Retrofitting consumes any remaining movement points on that fleet, so they can't go flying off immediately.
- You don't have to wait for the retrofit or tie up planetary resources/queues, which makes the resource of "existing hulls" way more attractive than simply building everything from scratch all the time.
I really liked how when a deep-space fleet was aging it felt like a huge difference if I got them relieved in time to bring them home for upgrades or if they fought one fight too many and got outclassed and gutted/destroyed. Building the ships from scratch took a fair bit more time. Most other space 4X games I've played with retrofit I've either not bothered because it took so much time to work through the UI and so much game-time/resources, or I've struggled through it anyway due to attachment to individual ships.
Actually, my only complaint with this retrofit system is that in general it seems to cost too much
dust, because it seems that it's always some % of the original design's build-cost rather than in any way based on the actual difference in modules. I'd much prefer if the cost was calculated by:
- total up the build-cost of all the modules in the old design that are not in the new design, subtract 50% of that from the retrofit cost (so it's negative now)
- total up the build-cost of all the modules in the new design that are not in the old design, add 125% (or 150%, or 200%, whatever, something like the how-much-dust-to-buy-planet-construction-outright calculation is done) of that to the retrofit cost.
- if retrofit cost is less than zero, set to zero
- add a small base amount based on the hull type to the retrofit cost to keep people from getting "freebies" by selective downgrades balancing out a few upgrades
Anyway, short on time. ES definitely needs a lot more work, but hopefully they're earnest in the "ongoing work" aspect of what beta means