OK, after a week or so of discussion, I think I can start collecting ideas about armor and armor related mechanics (armor piercing, armor rotting, etc)
Keeping armor as a primary damage mitigation mechanic:
1. Keep system as is, but rebalance armor values and armor mechanic related values (net_damage = effective_damage - effective_armor, but buffing what the average effective_armor would be.
2. Adjust system to a ratio based (net_damage = f(effective_damage/effective_armor) for some yet to be determined, non-decreasing function f, possibly adjusting how effective_armor relates to armor piercing, armor rotting, and armor boosts). Rebalance armor, armor related stuff, damage, hull bonuses, and HP accordingly
3. Switch to a logarithmic system, but still using linear calculations as the "innermost" computation (aka, net_damage = f(log(g(effective_damage - effective_armor))), for some yet to be determined, non-decreasing functions f and g, possibly adjusting how effective_armor relates to armor piercing, armor rotting, and armor boosts) Rebalance accordingly
4. Switch to a logarithmic system, using a ratio as the "innermost" computation (aka, net_damage = f(log(g(effective_damage/effective_armor))) for some yet to be determined, non-decreasing functions f and g, possibly adjusting how effective_armor relates to armor piercing, armor rotting, and armor boosts)
With the above ideas, some combination of the following "modifiers" (one, some, all, or even none)
- Adjust the minimum damage due to armor (possibly keep it as a ratio, or change it to a fixed damage)
- Make effective_armor scale based on the attacker's mark level. How this scaling is done is TBD. Two proposed methods:
* cross-lookup of armor across Mk. (aka, if a Mk. N ship attacks a Mk. M ship, instead of using the armor value of the Mk. M target for computation, use the armor value of he Mk. N target)
* just linearizing (aka, if a Mk. N ship attacks a Mk. M ship, use the armor value of the Mk. 1 target * N, or possibly armor value of the target Mk. M * (N/M))
- Make attack bonuses apply AFTER armor considerations, instead of before (thus making armor MORE effective in the case of hull type bonuses)
Removing armor as a primary damage mitigation mechanic:
1. Remove armor entirely, repurpose ships whose purpose is to abuse armor or armor related mechanics. Rebalance HP, damage, and hull bonuses accordingly
2. Keep armor, but make it limited in scope (aka, most ships would only have 0 armor), but buff the armor of the few units that keep armor, to make it more obvious in the cases where it does come into play. Possibly rename armor (like to deflectors or something)
* This does give the question of what to do with armor piercing, armor boosting, and armor rotting. One suggestion is to allow armor rotters to take allow armor to go to "negative effective armor", to some sane cap of course. This way, it has use against even the now majority of ships that have no armor
* The few ships that have armor may be subject to the changes in the armor mechanic proposed above.
3. Go back to the non-deterministic system of the 3.0 days (almost certainly a bad idea, but included for the sake of completeness)
Sorry I didn't bother crediting ideas. Mods (and up) can feel free to edit this post to include such references (though its not like they needed my permission any-ways though)
Note, what is NOT on the table for this thread is the "standardizing" the logical purpose of hull types. That is a discussion for another thread.