Losing steam

Share and discuss your gameplay strategies.
posted on April 24th, 2014, 2:50 pm
Howdy to all you fine people. Just got the latest version of Fleet Ops (tried it a while back but then lost access to Armada for a couple of years) and have been greatly enjoying it. Been reading through all the strategy stuff on the guide, watched a bunch of replays, cutting my teeth against hard AI a bit.

I've noticed a problem in my gameplay, though. In short, my early game tends to go great - bug spam, k'vort spam, double probe/scube all work well for clawing an early advantage and shutting down an expansion or two. Then it falls off hard. Just came out of a dominion game where I slaughtered waves of romulan ships and had a map advantage... Then my fleet was suddenly overrun by endless waves of Romulans and it spiraled out of control (actually, Romulans are the race I have the most trouble with).

Optimise Borg has failed horribly every time. Klingons I can more or less hold on with. The only faction I can seem to consistently do well with is Assimilate Borg. I actually began to suspect that Dominion AI was inferior from how ineffective they've proven (I randomise both myself and the AI).

I suppose the bottom line is that my macro is failing, sometimes despite a theoretically superior position. Do you have any suggestions for keeping the pace up? Also any suggestions for handling Romulans?
posted on April 24th, 2014, 3:42 pm
play human characters, the AI is given cheats so it can spam units you won't see in real games
posted on April 24th, 2014, 7:45 pm
Oh, I know that the AI has limitations. Infinite resource cheat to make up for appalling micro, weird build decisions and the like. Still, it's a way to practice opening builds and counter setups. I was just unsure as to whether my problems were simply a symptom of the AI's brokenness, or an actual weakness.
posted on April 24th, 2014, 8:04 pm
The Merciless AI gains a large number of bonuses compared to even Hard. Notably much faster building and effectively limitless resources. Romulan and Dominion are especially bad as their build order seems to be the best done, so you'll often find yourself facing eg a Tavara quite early on.

I've found the best way to tone down the Merciless AI without neutering the challenge is to add an AI build time handicap in the Advanced options for Instant Action. A value of 1.15 to 1.2 generally lets my Fed fight them without too much of a disadvantage.

Best option, of course, is to play online, but it's understandable if that's difficult to get time for -- it's the situation I'm in, after all.
posted on April 24th, 2014, 8:08 pm
Definitely hoping to get a chance to play online sometime soon :) AI matches were only ever intended as practice for that.
posted on April 24th, 2014, 8:48 pm
I'd scale back the destroyer spamming a bit, only build what you need for defence, and focus the rest of your resources on research and expanding to more moons. Then, when the time comes, you can afford more for bigger ships.

Taking out the AI's mining expansions is pointless, as the AI "cheats" with regards to resources.
posted on April 24th, 2014, 10:15 pm
If i am playing a free for all with multiple merc AIs i use this strat.

Klingon:1st priority get 2 additional expansions, then focus on building Kvorts for hit an runs on a specific neighbors constructors. Focus on hitting this neighbor with bigger and bigger hit and runs until you where them down, then take them out entirely. Don't get too research happy, i found its better to have more ships early on then to spend resources on making a few ships better. After your wipe this neighbor out set up shop with mining and defense platforms. I then build one fleet and leave it close to my base to thwart off romulan/dom/fed. If you made it this far its looking good, build a second fleet, cloak, travel to enemy base, decloak, blow it all to hell. target ship production and construction ships. When your fleet has taken enough looses recloak, priority repair, cloak the fleet at your base and swap em. Keep this up so one fleet is always getting repaired and reinforced and can assist with defense, eventually you'll have more than one fleet on the field. You may need to switch focus from one AI to another if you see "player" getting out of control.

Romulans: Same but i am a bit more aggressive. Also i tend to build far less defense platforms at my main base as they are total waste of resources. I will use them to ward off any light attacks at expansions.

Dominion: Build troop ships, take over enemy constructor (hopefully borg), build mixtech, build dreadnought. Blow everything to hell!

Feds: Get to a warp in asap and then warp into your weakest neighbor, by then you should have a few destroyers on the field. If you time it well you can get 5-6 ships causing some serious damage early on. Later on, deploy the tried and true wall of mayson turrets and just wait till you can over run the board with sovereigns.

Borg: you said you got that on lock down, but i just assimilate early and often till i can get cubes.

Hope it helps.
posted on April 25th, 2014, 8:44 pm
You know what's even worse than your complaints?A very very late FFA game with 8 players, 7 being AI, and you being the remaining survivor against a borg AI... CUBE SPAM! Holy shit... :borg:

You could barely handle a few of them, but the mad AI just keeps pouring them in! Eventually I managed to out-troll the AI, but not after 5 days and 35 hours of constant fighting... the time it took before I came to that point is not included!

Having dominion supply mining has helped a lot. It would seem that in my case, resistance was NOT futile... but only just barely! :assimilate:

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