Polaris

Cloaks in 3.0

Cloaks in 3.0   41 members have voted

  1. 1. which version of cloaks do you prefer

    • I prefer the changes in 3.0 that cloaks do not cut the attack dice, but prevent exploding dice
      8
    • I prefer cloaks in 2.0 that allow exploding dice, but cut the attack dice in half
      32

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91 posts in this topic

So there have been a lot of complaints about cloaks, but not all have spoken on it, so here is a poll :)

the aim is to see, if people do generally disagree with cloaking changes, or if there are those that prefer the proposed change

remember the 3.0 changes to cloaks make cloaks weaker, but the ships can still be balanced, but it would have to come from elsewhere, but the 3.0 cloaks could speed up the game (as ships would die faster) or not (if defenses are raised and not offenses to compensate)

there is no "i don't know or care option" if you don't know, go read up on it, if you don't care...why did you click this topic? :D 

 

clarification on rules

V2 cloaks, can be turned on or off, when they are on, direct weapon attacks were cut in half, both for shooting when your cloaks are on, and people shooting you when cloaks are on. and the self repair MAR ceased to work when cloaks were on.

V3 cloaks, can also be toggled on or off, but instead of cutting the dice pool for attacks, they simply stop exploding dice, so a 6 still grants 2 successes, but you don't get an extra dice to roll, tis again applies both to shooting at cloaks, or shooting with cloak

 

for polling statistics subtract one vote from V3 and add it to V2, for Bessemer's miss-vote (see below)

 

 

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Could you possibly update the OP to include a comparison of the two sets of cloak rules? It'll save time for people in the long run.

(and to answer the question, I'm currently sitting on a bus and I don't know where my orange book is at my place...)

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To me change to cloaks was completely out of the blue as it wasnt one of the issues with the 2.0 rule set. I feel like maybe this got changed in an attempt to make those black red dices more relevant whereas they are not really needed in the game.

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...it does IMHO ruin the feel and flavour of it 

The slowly slowly catchee monkey of moving under cloak then pouncing that was very ralf

It's not massive, to me it's just a meh don't like that it isolation, seems weaker and less fitting...but Ok lets see how it works

So on paper I like the old version better for feel and effect 

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My main issue, other than that we don't know how other MARs or stat changes might contribute to the defences of cloaked ships, is that the on/off nature being carried over is... Somewhat pointless, with the reduction of impact. It's a false choice- what it does is stabilize the number of possible hits, which is powerful over the course of a game and where ships are weakened, but means nothing for approach or influencing what weapons will be used to target the ships in question. The on/off and effect going both ways nature of cloaks straight up won't matter if the effect in question does not dramatically change the nature of the ship.

 

My prediction, under the current beta rules, is that the majority of players will keep cloaks up and just deal with heavy dice outgoing, and will only drop when the ship in question is hurt enough to need to fish for sixes to hurt a given target. Or, conversely, players may not use it all, given that the effect goes both ways. People may hedge their bets on their own dice being hotter than their opponant's and see it as more of a detriment. OR, for closer range ships they'll leave it on only until their own weapons are in range. Either way, it'll be super predictable in its use in a given game and, as stated above, will not impact targetting the way old cloaks did. It doesn't actively protect anything, just keeps damage that will happen from running away on you.

 

Either make the effect something that is worth turning on and off, or remove the toggle on it.

Fluffhunter likes this

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So ye once again we really need to see new ship stats to really judge but i think the consensus at the moment is that nobody likes new "cloaks" if you can even call them that.

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Neither.

Not because I don't know or care, but because I think both options are not really fitting.

The old halving of pools does no longer feel as organic as previously, because other halving rules (e.g., linking) have also been removed.

The new heavy dice mechanic on the other hand has too little impact.

So, something else is needed. Something inbetween, with more impact than the current beta rule and at the same time more at home within the context of the rest of the new edition.

Charbe86 likes this

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Cloaking should be Expensive and Effective. Cut the dice pool. 

As long as there are not a dozen things cutting the pool, it won't be hard. 

Stopping dice explosion is weak

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For simplicity, just half the dice pool after linking and possibly other rules have taken place instead of halving the dice pool of each weapon first. But the change to blue dice is so small that, in my opinion, you could remove the cloaking field MAR entirely.

WestAustralian likes this

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12 minutes ago, blut_und_glas said:

So, something else is needed. Something inbetween, with more impact than the current beta rule and at the same time more at home within the context of the rest of the new edition.

Just firing off a few random ideas about what such a something could look like:

The main point is, I think, that it should affect the enemy's attack roll in some way, to differentiate it from Shields and to underline that idea that it is about not being hit instead of tanking hits. To-hit modifiers are out, as these are already covered by Difficult/Elusive Target.

What about Cloak preventing firing solutions to be used against the cloaked ship? No linking or combining fire, when you go against Cloak, perhaps no focused fire and/or targetetd strikes as well? Seems thematic, but has no effect on attackers who do not rely on linking in the first place. So maybe throw in the heavy dice on top. Or maybe not.

Or, instead of halving the attack pool, how about giving Cloak a value (x), with x being the number or dice that are substracted from the attacker's pool?

Or how about Cloak straight up preventing attacks at certain range bands (which ones could also be governed by an (x) value of Cloak)?

Or perhaps there is no penalty to the attack roll itself, but to target a cloaked ship, you need to expend a Command Point? (Then you could also introduce a Specialist MAR, that reduces that Command Point cost, so that certain ships become dedicated "sub hunters".)

Just thinking out loud here.

Charbe86 and Xerkics like this

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Ok, I'm a muppet...I clicked the wrong button...please disregard 1 vote for V3 and add one for V2, unless the score can be modded?

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19 minutes ago, Bessemer said:

Ok, I'm a muppet...I clicked the wrong button...please disregard 1 vote for V3 and add one for V2, unless the score can be modded?

I can't modify the poll, but I included the note in the OP, for those seeking a current tally :) 

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2 hours ago, draco84oz said:

Could you possibly update the OP to include a comparison of the two sets of cloak rules? It'll save time for people in the long run.

updated, let me know if there's anything I missed

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The main problem I have with new cloaking is it is pretty much useless. Play a game and record the times where new cloaking did anything at all and you might get a couple times where a crit was downgraded to damage, but if you are using it then there is also going to be a couple of times where it hurts your shooting. 

Example being 12 attack dice average two 6's, Rolling an average of 4 regular hits, 2 double damage hits with 1 more hit on the explode. That is 8 hits instead of 9 with "New Cloak". Scaling up to 24 AD that is 16 hits instead of 18.

So for the most part you are only going to see 1 or 2 hit difference depending on a number of factors. 

Can it make a difference? Sure on large ships with a high DR it might just drop it under the CR threshold, but if you are using it then your shots get impacted as well. Should we give ships being shot at by ships with shields saves because those ships are shooting through their own shields?

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the point has always been to boost defense, while hurting offense, but yeah, the new system doesn't have much of an impact, there is a slight difference, but not enough to be a major form of defense...

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The discussion so far seems to be based around the defensive capabilities of the cloak, but what about the offensive part of it? A lot of the discussion I've seen previously (ie 2.0) about Relthoza cloaks is that it turned into a game of chicken in some respects - it wants guessing game as to when to drop the cloak, as too early and you just get swatted, and too late and you didn't have enough time to do significant damage to the enemy.

this new cloak, however, seems to be a bit of a boost to Relthoza offensive capabilities. Instead of having to hold fire until close (since shooting out was basically pointless) you can now do a more constant stream of fire as you close. Would that be a decent offset of the lack of defenses?

Although Spartan will probably have to rewrite the fluff a bit, since the cloak was a major part of how the Relthoza saw the hunt in a cultural sense - the ambush was all...

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I think the reason for switching to Heavy Dice from Half Dice is to speed up play, especially given the painful calculations surrounding Impeded Fire linked attacks in 2.0.

The math on old cloak vs new cloak is:

  • Old Cloak: At least 1/2 AD, unless you are dealing with lots of low AD weapons linked. 1 AD averages 0.8 Hits, so "net effect" is to reduce your opponent to 0.4 Hits per non-HALF AD
  • New Cloak: AD are resolved with Heavy Dice instead of Exploding Dice. Heavy Dice average 0.67 Hits per AD. 

This means that combat will be much more dangerous than before when a cloaked ship is involved. No more slap fighting or fishing for lucky rolls.

In theory, Spartan could get a much closer result to 2.0 by having Cloak change attacks to Basic Dice (1 Hit on 4,5,6) to yield 0.5 Hits per AD.

The question is what do they do with ships that currently rely on cloaks. 

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The Basic Die I could get behind.

34 minutes ago, alextroy said:

The question is what do they do with ships that currently rely on cloaks. 

Do you mean what happens when Cloaked ships fire with cloaks on? Simply have them fire on Heavy/basic as well?

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43 minutes ago, Bessemer said:

The Basic Die I could get behind.

Do you mean what happens when Cloaked ships fire with cloaks on? Simply have them fire on Heavy/basic as well?

IIRC, that's always been the idea of cloaks - whatever effect impacts on incoming fire also effects outgoing fire. 

What about a variable cloak hardpoint? The ability to switch between a basic and heavy dice cloak at will? Probably limit it to large ships and heavy cruisers. Plus you can then have varied cloak strengths for different ships. 

Bessemer likes this

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1 hour ago, draco84oz said:

IIRC, that's always been the idea of cloaks - whatever effect impacts on incoming fire also effects outgoing fire. 

What about a variable cloak hardpoint? The ability to switch between a basic and heavy dice cloak at will? Probably limit it to large ships and heavy cruisers. Plus you can then have varied cloak strengths for different ships. 

Or you have Cloaks move to Basic Dice, and have Systems Network grant the weaker Blue Dice version to networked ships that don't have cloaks, instead of Stealth. It always struck me as odd that SysNet gave out an ability that the parent ship need not have.

Bessemer, Polaris and draco84oz like this

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4 hours ago, Vedar said:

The main problem I have with new cloaking is it is pretty much useless. Play a game and record the times where new cloaking did anything at all and you might get a couple times where a crit was downgraded to damage, but if you are using it then there is also going to be a couple of times where it hurts your shooting. 

Underlined by me, for emphasis.

2 hours ago, alextroy said:

I think the reason for switching to Heavy Dice from Half Dice is to speed up play, especially given the painful calculations surrounding Impeded Fire linked attacks in 2.0.

Yes.  We are trying to avoid the halving of dice.

1 hour ago, draco84oz said:

What about a variable cloak hardpoint? The ability to switch between a basic and heavy dice cloak at will? Probably limit it to large ships and heavy cruisers. Plus you can then have varied cloak strengths for different ships. 

Perhaps.  We have other MAR's that come with a value, so this wouldn't be out of line.

2 hours ago, alextroy said:

In theory, Spartan could get a much closer result to 2.0 by having Cloak change attacks to Basic Dice (1 Hit on 4,5,6) to yield 0.5 Hits per AD.

Yes, an interesting theory.

So I guess you guys have something against cloaks.  If you'd just said something.... :D

Okay, kidding aside, I have a couple of points to throw in here:

As has been said before, you're getting an incomplete picture, and I'm sorry for that.  It's kind of where we are in the process, for good or bad.  I'm totally open to advocate for changes to cloaks, I have no problem doing that.  Rolling basic dice is a good idea, I just don't know if it is the right one.  It replicates the halving of dice, without having to do the math behind it.  It's a serious nerf on attack dice though.

Should inbound and outbound fire be affected the same?   Should a cloaked ship have basic dice for incoming fire, but blue dice for outbound?   Should the dice stay red, but be impaired (hitting on 5-6 only)?  What other ideas?

Back to the first post I quoted...Play and record data.  When we get the rules and everything out to you we'll need documented info on how things work or not.  I'm not saying we can't make a change before we release 3rd edition, but either way, we'll need actual feedback to make sure we are okay.

But keep up the discussion, if there are extra ideas out there, let's hear what you have to say.

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I assume one key to nerfing cloaks is to increase destruction, reducing game time. 

Halving a fist full of dice is so easy and fast it should not even be a factor. You dump the whole pool on the table and split 1 for 1.

Don't fuss about "do I halve each ships pool, before or after damage reduction"

i just want to see Strong Cloaks that make a real difference and require a Tactical Decision. Make them expensive, that's fine. Also don't copy Taskforce, let me turn my shields back on again

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Not to distract from the conversation at hand here, but I do feel like it should be stated...

28 minutes ago, Spartan_FA_Mike said:

 I'm totally open to advocate for changes to cloaks, I have no problem doing that.  

Seems a good thing really, and having any kind of help for important changes is good.  How cloaking works effects one of the core six on a fundamental level, and to a lesser degree the Directorate, making it rather important to get right,  

I do wish We had this kind of advocacy for other issues with the game at this point.  Cloaking is apparently up for potentially drastic changes, but Kinetics is set in stone?  Or is that just because Neil really loves his Dindrenzi and wants to keep them winning?

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1 hour ago, Spartan_FA_Mike said:

Should inbound and outbound fire be affected the same?   Should a cloaked ship have basic dice for incoming fire, but blue dice for outbound?   Should the dice stay red, but be impaired (hitting on 5-6 only)?  What other ideas?

It should definately be the same outbound and inbound, or else you'll keep them on and poke out.

 

I get that it's an issue of an incomplete picture, and that it may not be an issue of balance at all once additional defences are distributed to current Cloaking ships- but even without testing, the point still stands- mathematically speaking, there's a lack of risk/reward, so I'm left to wonder why it's there at all when things like Retractable were removed. 

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And another thought:

Seeing that for linking, the halving of AD is being replaced with the linked fire value, how about doing the same for Cloak? I.e., if you attack a cloaked target (or are cloaked yourself and attack), the lead ship does contribute only its linked fire value instead of its full AD.

Xerkics likes this

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