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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Teradyn » 03 Feb 2015, 17:42

FriendlyFire wrote:There's a guarantee that the ship will be dropped at least within something like 25 or 33% of the interdiction radius. Minimum distance however is unrestricted, so one could technically drop straight on the interdictor.
Is that how they worked canonically?
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by FriendlyFire » 04 Feb 2015, 04:36

It's how they'll work in our canon. I have no intention to change it.
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Teradyn » 04 Feb 2015, 16:56

Kalis wrote:To any Imperials, I'm considering such behavior an exploitation of a bug. Don't do it.

As may be obvious from the dev replies, this is not considered a bug. No use of these mechanics to specifically target and destroy an interdictor will be considered an exploit.

No canonical deployment of interdiction fields can be used as a guide on how we are supposed to utilize them in game as their mechanics are confirmed as decidedly non-canonical by design. Each group will have to come up with their own tactics on how to deploy their respective interdictor vessels if indeed they can be seen as worth deploying now that we know this incredibly crippling Achilles's heel.
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Kalis » 04 Feb 2015, 19:12

No Teradyn, I am very sure you are not supposed to be able to do this:

When using targetted jumps (having a player targetted and using initiate hyperdrive to calculate a jump) it seems to be possible to circumvent the gravity wells of the Interdictor if you are using it as your target
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Teradyn » 04 Feb 2015, 19:20

What FriendlyFire pointed out is that it wasn't circumventing the gravity wells. It was simply the RNG resulting in your exiting the jump closer to the interdictor than we (at the time) thought was correct. It isn't any different than trying to jump past the Interdictor or setting a manual waypoint near the Interdictor.

We at the time thought that the Interdictor's gravity wells would have prevented someone creating a jump calculation that ended inside the field, but that turned out to not be the design. We thought that the gravity shadow that the Interdictor's generators produced would be treated the same as a gravity well around a planet or moon in game, but apparently a decision was made to make a distinction for some reason.

At first the 25% to 33% incursion into the field was known and thought to only be an occurrence that would be possible when jumping through the field to a point created beyond it before the field went up. Now we know that the field doesn't do anything to stop you from creating a jump that intersects it or ends up in it. It only prevents you from creating a jump gate while in its influence. It won't even stop you from taking that gate if it was created before the field went up.

My statement that you quoted was based on a misunderstanding of the mechanics because of our assumption that the intent was for the gravity wells generated by the Interdictors to behave the same as the gravity fields in place around the planets or moons.
Last edited by Teradyn on 04 Feb 2015, 19:27, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Kalis » 04 Feb 2015, 19:24

Then how come if you are targeting something you can actually create a jump within the gravity well?

Or could you do that anyways?
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Teradyn » 04 Feb 2015, 19:28

You could do that anyways, read my ninja edit :)

From what I can tell based on the replies so far by the Devs, the behavior of the current Interdictor fields is not based on limitations in the engine or code but are rather set up that way on purpose.

I don't recall any reasoning behind this being shared at this point but I may have missed it.

The only one I recall was that if the field stopped ships immediately at its full range, they couldn't be trapped because they could just turn around and jump away. That seems suspect now because by having a variable range between 0 and 66% of the max range, the Interdictor is likely to pull ships out on top of itself and that completely destroys any usefulness of the Interdictor (of any faction by the way) as an interdiction tool. It can only be used when jumping in on top of a fleet where it can hold them in a well if they don't happen to start a jump gate in the time it takes for the hyperspace animation of the player controlling the Interdictor to finish so he can stop his ship's forward momentum and start up the gravity generators.

Given the radar flash a ship creates on exiting hyperspace, all a force needs to do is create a jump gate immediately when the Interdictor jumps in. With the current mechanics as they are, Interdictor ships are pretty useless unless the enemy fleet doesn't create the jump gates in time. And they would have to be sleeping not to be able to do that easily.
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by DarkForce » 04 Feb 2015, 20:20

I can at least offer a canon explanation for the logic behind the current implementation of interdictors:

They have two primary functions in Star Wars EU. The first is to pull ships out of their hyperspace routes prematurely for all sorts of nefarious purposes. The second is to prevent enemy ships from retreating successfully.

But, given that this is a game, the advantages of using an interdictor can't be too great or you run the risk of it being declared OP.

If ships are pulled out of hyperspace at the maximum range, it's (as Teradyn noted) easy to just turn around and escape. Therefore the ship needs to be pulled in at some radius inside the maximum range so that friendly vessels have a chance to attack them before they can escape.

Also in Star Wars canon, I've never seen an instance where an interdictor operated alone. In the most famous example in Timothy Zahn's Thrawn Trilogy, Thrawn usually paired them with ISDs and fighter cover in order to protect the ships because they were inherently weak.

Here's a description of the Immobilizer-418s weaknesses from Wookieepedia:

Although they were tremendous assets to any fleet, Interdictor cruisers suffered from some drawbacks. First and foremost, it took some time to power up and activate the gravity well projectors after the cruiser positioned itself and,[11] once activated, the tremendous simulated mass they generated made the ship very slow and cumbersome to maneuver[9]. While there was rarely enough time for an entire fleet to make the jump to hyperspace before a newly-arrived Interdictor activated its projectors, fast ships and starfighters could often escape to the edge of an active gravity well, and then make the jump to hyperspace.[11]

The gravity wells were also a large drain on the ship's energy reserves, preventing the optimal use of weaponry and shields. This flaw was exploited on several occasions. When enemy ships were able to inflict significant damage to the Interdictor, the captain was forced to choose between entrapment of the enemy and his ship's own protection. This flaw was compounded by the fact that Interdictors were poorly protected and armed for a capital ship of their size. Enemy forces could send a smaller warship, such as an Nebulon-B frigate or Thranta-class War Cruiser to weaken an Interdictor's defenses and quickly force it to power down its gravity wells to fend for itself. Although the abilities of the Immobilizer 418 were fairly effective against the missile launchers of the Marauder-class corvette often employed by the Rebel Alliance, the ship was also known for its notorious weaknesses against larger capital ships such as the Mon Calamari MC80 Star Cruiser and bombers such as the BTL Y-wing starfighter.[9]


There's also the simple fact that the current implementation of interdictors is nowhere close to what is proposed in canon, as depicted in this graphic:

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Whereas our implementation has the interdictor at the center of that field.

As for being able to hyper-out right away, and correct me if I'm wrong, but shouldn't cooldown times prevent that from happening?

Aside from that, creating waypoints on the navmap is hardcoded into FL. Even if it's possible to prevent jump waypoints being placed inside a planetary or other gravity well, those are static wells vs. the dynamically created one of the interdictor.

So we're talking about two very different entities here, and there are very likely limitations to what you can do with the dynamic field creation with regards to preventing jumps in and out.

Obviously I don't know the specific coding that went into it, but that's my most educated guess. FF may be able to correct me on this matter.

Even so, Star Wars lore treats interdictors as situational tools, only being at their most effective in ideal circumstances. It was never intended to be quite the impenetrable spider's web that I think people assumed.

We probably should have been clearer about that. If it helps, blame me for not being clear about it. :P
Blame DarkForce, he wasn't clear about it.
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Teradyn » 04 Feb 2015, 21:10

The problem isn't the cooldowns. If you jump on an enemy fleet in space and deploy the gravity wells, then their cooldown doesn't matter, since they aren't the ones that just jumped in. And right now, you can start a jump calculation right before the wells are powered on and at that point it will continue to stabilize and you can jump out safely.

Also, I am aware of the canonical use of the gravity wells and the current implementation gives no way for there to be a reasonable assumption of their use. No Interdictor would place the field in such a way as to pull enemy ships on top of itself. The very nature of their weakness, as you point out, makes that a stupid move and one that would not be done. The way the setup works now, enemy ships can (and have in our tests) jump within 4k of the Interdictor with its fields up!

Besides, the argument
DarkForce wrote:But, given that this is a game, the advantages of using an interdictor can't be too great or you run the risk of it being declared OP.
doesn't begin to hold water given that the interdictor's (assumed previously) in game performance is expected on both sides. I suspected this type of argument being the reason an enemy ship has the chance to jump right on top of the Interdictor when no interpretation of the way these ships operated in canon with their variable direction beams or a single sphere around them as is done in most games fit.

The penetration of the zone makes sense as the Interdictors would have positioned their gravity projection to stop an incoming ship and hold it at a range and position with which to hold it at bay or hold it so that the rest of the fleet could move in and destroy them. What doesn't make sense is the 0 range possibility. If a ship falls in the 25% range and is stuck then it can cruise away from the Interdictor to get out of range. The Interdictor cannot move (although in canon as you posted, the Interdictor could move slowly) while its wells are up so the enemy ship can safely move away. This also hold for the ships supporting the Interdictor. They are not able to do more inside the well's influence other than cruise and pursue the enemy ship that just got caught.

How exactly would that be OP? It sounds like a useful tool was basically designed to be stillborn. If the intent is to make the Interdictor more vulnerable than it already is, then that at least is a success. The range of the penetration probably should never be more than within 35% of the Interdictor's range for this mod's implementation to make any sense. Some of the other issues like the gravity well not preventing the creation of jump calculations into or beyond it are understandable if they are game engine limitations, but the range of penetration as I understand it so far is based on a decision and not an engine limitation.

Was there player feedback that led to the assumption that a more canonical interpretation of the Interdictor's gravity well utilization would be interpreted as OP?
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Re: [1.47] Interdictor Gravity Well Not working

by Sizer » 04 Feb 2015, 21:14

A) The reason they do not function as projected wells like in canon is a programming limitation, not something we chose to ignore.

B) Ships that are forced out of hyper because of an interdiction field are doing so because their navicomps think there's a gravwell there they didn't know about. You can plot a course into where a Interdiction Field is because you don't know it exists. Your navicomp knows the Coruscant Gravwell exists, it's on the star charts, so it just won't let you calculate into it. Interdictor Fields are by definition dynamic, and therefore you can calculate into one.

C) The %chance of drop distance is there for a few balance reasons, but we can look into setting up a maximum depth limit so that the space immediately within engagement range of an interdictor is somewhat safe. However, with that would likely come a debuff to the health of interdictors, as they're far tankier than they really should be atm.
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