So airships can be set to focus on shooting, repairing or firefighting. The idea is that you may not have enough crew to do all three as much as possible, so depending on the situation, you'll want to be able to set priorities.
Unfortunately, this does not really work. The winning strategy is to put lots and lots of crew into your ship design, so that even with significant losses, everything can be done at once: staffing all modules, shooting, putting out fires, repairing.
This is a bit of a game balance issue, and I'm not sure how to resolve it. The only two things I can think of are:
Neither of those is very satisfying. Does anyone have a suggestion for resolving this a different way.
What about giving the player more options for crew micro so that you can command to pre place them on design phase and maybe some pre sets of crew loactions . Also you could try to add more crew type and balance the types so the normal sailor that we have in the game is jack of all trades but a master of none .
I like the idea of setting up a priority system. You could do it similar to how Rimworld allows you to custom set the priority of your crew. http://www.indiedb.com/games/rimworld
This would allow you to make sure some people only focus on firing weapons while other crew members are more generalists. It'd also create some attachment to your crew, especially if they slowly gained experience and became more efficient at their jobs. This way you could have specialized crew members that've fought in countless battles with you and really add that sense of wanting to protect particular ships and crews that have been gaining experience for you.
"Oh no! John just died! He was the best gunner!"
Yeah, I really want to see if I can individualize the crew. My worry is that you have so little control over whether they die it could be very depressing!
One thing I just thought of that could help with the "more crew = better" thing is introducing a congestion movement penalty. So if your ship's crowded, things slow down.
This thread is pretty old so i hope my post is not considered necroing ;)
Both zielemen´s and iceman89´s suggestions a great and are quite similar to what i´m going to suggest.
First i suggest rebalancing the crew modules. Make them large / have less space for crew and make them heavier... living space is scarce on a ship.
Berth: capacity 2, weight 10, size 1x1, weight/crew ratio 5 (vanilla 5)
Quarters: capacity 10, weight 50, size 1x3, weight/crew ratio 5 (vanilla 3.3)
Large Quarters: capacity 25, weight 125, size 2x3 weight/crew ratio 5 (new)
With these settings the weight per crew member is fixed at 5, but it is more space efficient to use larger modules. But this also means your ship will have to be bigger if you want more crew. And bigger ships are harder to handle when it comes to efficiency e.g. fire fighting and ammo hauling.
Next is different crew members. I suggest having specialists and general purpose sailors. Like gunners (one for cannons and one for small arms), fire fighters, mechanics, navigators, spotters (telescope), operators (targeting "computer") and of course the commander. Each specialist would have 100% efficiency in their respective skill but only 25% at other jobs. While the sailors perform for 50% on every duty. And the commander gets an individual skill that raises the skills of every crew member by x%.
Crew experience: Yes please. There should be a difference between a newly formed crew and a battle hardened one. But i suggest making the gap between the two not too large. For example a fully skilled specialist would have like 120% efficiency instead of 500% or so. Plus it should take a lot of battles for the crew to reach max rank, otherwise it would make things too easy.
With these changes it should be more interesting to build a ship and harder to find the right balance crew wise. Also it gives the player more options to customize ships.
The exact numbers of course are subject to balancing and may be changed according to your liking.
Great suggestions, but huge ships really suck ATM. It would be like beating an already dead horse.
You´re right, the big ones are not the best ones currently. But the game is still under heavy development and i´m sure things will change in the future.
Whatever Zarkonnen comes up with, i totally agree that the "more crew = better" thing is not the best solution for this game. Every ship should have advantages and disadvantages depending on its size to keep the game balanced.
What if you made an FTL style crew control? Where you can click on individual crew members and tell them to do certain things(man gun, fight fire, ect). If you had to make the crew bay more expensive, do it with weight, not cost. Make a crew room weigh as much as the room AND the amount of crew it can carry, and make it so you can tell it to only spawn x amount of crew. That way spamming crew would be a lot harder, because you have the extra weight of all 40 people.
Captain, Engineering Corps
Yeah, though FTL style is way too hard especcially with clicking individual crew members. I like the idea of having crew have its own job, such as gunner, pilot (the people who work the suspendium and engines), commander (there would only be a couple), Medic (may be too specific), and Engineer/Repair Man.
Eh? I find that large ships work out much better for me. I have three tiers of bomber fortresses that I use to great effect. They have a flight ceiling of between 120-145, going higher as the tier increases.
Weapons are only grenades, since I usually use these to siege defenses from above, avoiding cannons, though the highest tier has 6 cannons for defense or giving me more diverse siege options if the enemy has ships or defenses spaced apart (I can float above one and bomb it while using cannons against smaller targets further out.) The weapons are between 8-25 grenadiers, with an additional 6 cannons on the highest tier ship.
The supplies include between 80-120 coal and 100-200 ammo for heavy sieges. I usually start running out of ammo way before coal, but when I start getting low on ammo, I have a Large Keel installed at the bottom of these flying fortress bombers so that I can smash down on top of enemy ships, which will result in their ship disintegrating into the ground or being held in place while grenades rain down. If done right, I totally avoid all of their cannon fire. Grounding my ship on top of enemy buildings also help me end battles if my ammo starts running low... The Large Keel at the bottom takes the all of the damage, so I have yet to lose a module from grounding my ship on top of enemies.
With the high flight ceiling and the Large Keel at the bottom for smashing things, these fortress bombers do decently well against enemy ships, too.
Back on topic... instead of getting rid of the priority button, maybe make them give a speed boost to crewmember repair/firefight/weapon actions. Possibly even add additional buttons...
"Brace for impact!" - Will temporarily decrease ship damage from ramming/grounding actions.
"Incoming Fire!" - Will decrease damage that modules and/or crew members take from enemy weapons for an amount of time.
"Overload Suspendium Chambers!" - Gives a quick boost of speed, good for avoiding falling objects, rushing ships into position, or ramming the enemy. Damages Suspendium Chambers with the possibility of the chambers catching on fire. Instantly burns coal inside of Suspendium Chambers, requiring 2 or 3 coals on the next feed. Sudden overload of the Suspendium Chambers releases a burst that somehow alters the ship's physics, giving it a short sudden burst of speed.
"Evasive Maneuvers!" - Instantly burns the coal inside of engines and requires 2 coals instead of one on the next feed. This causes the ship to do a quick evasive maneuver and avoid incoming fire for a couple of seconds. Carries a risk of starting fires in the engine rooms.
"Reverse Suspendium Polarity" - Changes the upward force generation of Suspendium Chambers into downward force generation. You will very likely lose your ship in this action, but you will also very likely crush whatever is below you. In the unlikely event that the ship survives cratering itself into the ground, all Suspendium Chambers will take heavy damage and may also catch on fire. (The only real way to survive this is to design a ship specifically to survive this.)