What's your strategy in Armada?

ZOmegaZ

Rear Admiral
One of the planned enhancements for the next version of PiArmada is a better enemy AI. As things stand, it works, but it's pretty stupid in some cases. And I figured, hey, best way to figure out a good game algorithm is to ask the people who play the game! The best kind of AI is the one that has a chance of beating you, after all. :)

So tell me: what do you do when you're playing Wing Commander Armada? When do you build, and what do you build? How do you determine what you move where? How do you determine what to attack with? Basically, I'd like your strategy, in as much detail as possible.

Oh, and while I'm posting, .09 is shaping up to be quite nice. The entire automated combat system has been rewritten in such a way that things make MUCH more sense, and so that they actually work! There's a menu system now instead of dropping you straight into the game, and you'll be able to choose your fighter for flight combat. The Kilrathi also now have their own icons. And that's just what's been done already. :)
 

LeHah

212 Squadron - "The Old Man's Eyes And Ears"
The first thing I make is a Banshee. I have to have a bomber for when the time comes, and most of the other ConFed fighters just don't seem to have enough firepower for my tastes.
 

Maj.Striker

Swabbie
Banned
Ok, here was my basic strategy for Armada and it seemed to work with just about any difficulty setting. First off, split fighters from carrier and head off in opposite directions to explore as much as possible in the first couple of rounds. Build mines immediately...even if the planet doesn't support all that much (each round you go without making money can really hurt). Set your shipyard to make arrows just to bulk up the numbers in your fleet and add some valuable scouts. (the quasi bad thing about armada was that 3 or four heavy fighters could wipe out 20 arrows...not realistic). Try to get 4 effective (planets with large resources) mines built within the first few rounds. Build another shipyard and start looking for bottlnecks (areas that the enemy will have to go through in order to get at your planets). Once you find some build fortresses to seal them off. Build more shipyards and mines and a couple of transports and assemble an invasion fleet. Once you feel you're strong enough to rove outside send the fleet but keep building in case you fail. Another tactic to use while dogfighting was to lure the enemy back into range of my carrier's flak guns. :) My carrier and 1 arrow destroyed something like 11 medium to heavy fighters that way. Good times...
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
My strategy suffered by too much knowledge of how the Armada AI worked. I'd always place on the hard setting so the Kilrathi would have more ships, and then I'd always play on Quick Combat in order to focus on the strategic level. Banshees and Gorans are pretty much the only thing that mattered because of the skewed fighter combat probability tables, so that's virtually all I'd produce.

In a game against a human opponent, I'd focus much more on the powerful medium fighters. Again, because of the 2 on 2 style of combat, adding in more Arrows would've be very effective, and it was all about having enough Wraiths and Banshees.

I never stopped scouting with my Arrows if I could keep them from contact. Always built mines if a world had more than 50 resources, and I kept a couple transports shuttling. I rarely built Fortresses because of the high cost to make them worthwhile. I'd mainly amass at choke points until my production economy was in very good shape, then I'd move forward with my carrier and start colonizing new systems as I advanced my force.
 

ZOmegaZ

Rear Admiral
Another tactic to use while dogfighting was to lure the enemy back into range of my carrier's flak guns
If you haven't played PiArmada, you should. The flight engine in the current version needs some definite tweaking before it's really that playable in a dogfight, and I forgot to replace the carrier model, but the flack effects are to die for.

The comments about fighter balance make me wonder about how I'm doing things. I don't have some formula that determines who wins, there's a significant random aspect to things. Two fleets enter battle. Each fleet picks one of its ships at random, one of the enemy non-carrier ships at random, and fires. Repeat until one fleet is dead. This means some aspects of the strategy will need to change. Maybe I should compile my own results table, have a certain group of ships enter battle some large number of times and see who wins and how often...
 

cff

Kilk'dymga'qith laq Ik'vikvi
My strategy depends on wether I play vs humans or vs AI.
As for AI: Spilt Arrows from the carrier and scout as fast as possible. Build mines with Shipyards ASAP. Build torpedo capable fighters there. I never build transports or fortresses. Then either go head to head with the enemy carrier OR (even cheaper) wait for the AI to separate its fighter force from his carrier and strike then.

For PvP I usually do mostly the same thing, but I prefer the Shoklar/Phantom price range there over the torp fighters. I never had use for transports or even mor so for fortresses.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
I used to never build Transports, but more recently I'm finding them pretty useful. I used to do the mine/shipyard thing, but then there'd be shipyards idling for a turn for lack of resources. A mine/shipyard neighboring a mine with a transport can be more efficient under the right circumstances, and you have the flexibility to move around resources to the front/carrier if necessary. Capturing Transports is pretty cool too. If you've got a two-system chokepoint and limited fighter resources, the Transport can hold the line or at least give early warning about an incoming strike force. They can act as patrol ships, recon scouts or good bait.
 

Halman

PSY-YI-YI
I played a lot like Chris did, except I never did quick combat. I'd also usually put down a heavy fortress at every choke point.
 

LarkInFlight

Rear Admiral
When I was playing Armada I always wanted to build destroyer or cruiser class ships. I had too many ore from mines and I never knew what to do with it(buildin fighters only gets boring quickly). I`d like to see ship to ship fights too. Something like Wing 3 Tallahassee vs Fralthi II ! Or maybe some orbital bombardments? You can expand Armada.. We could use the torp heavy fighters/bombers to attack not only the carrier (just 1 in sector) but some other ships too. And I`d love to see more strategy in Armada. In original game it was too simple (just building mines, shipyards and fortresses is not enaugh :) ) As I said before You can make something more than just the new copy of Wing Armada. I wish You luck!
 

Eder

Mr. Standoff
Hmmm, cool, one of my renders in the news again! Hey, wait, what's it doing inside something that's not Standoff? :(

I don't remember if I was ever asked about using that image for any project... but even when someone does ask me about using my stuff for their projects, I usually ask them to not release the material before it appears in Standoff... so I'm not exactly happy with what I saw in the news.

If you did ask me about using it and I, for some reason, forgot to ask you not to release it until it appeared in Standoff, I apologize... I honestly can't remember it, though, and I see no reason why I would let you make use of my work before my own project does.
 

ZOmegaZ

Rear Admiral
Ack!

I THINK I got that image in a thread many many months ago asking for such images... let me look it up and get back to you. Sorry about that, I certainly didn't MEAN to appropriate anyone else's work without authorization.

Edit: The search is down, and I can't figure out how to view old threads without it. It may take some time to figure out where I got that image and why I used it. But under any circumstances, I'll remove it from the next release. Again, my apologies.

Edit redux: Found it.

http://www.crius.net/zone/showthread.php?t=16335

Looks like it was just part of the package PeteyG uploaded, and I didn't work too hard at finding out whether the creators would mind. Since you obviously do, it's out. Sorry about that.
 

PeteyG

I can have an avatar now
I remember throwing a bunch of images together from the CIC's ships section and wallpapers section to 'spruce up' the version of piarmada i was playing. The hangar deck wallpaper by Eder ended up in the zip file i made for other people to use to spruce up their own games. Which I guess other people did. That's about the whole story.
 

Eder

Mr. Standoff
ZOmegaZ said:
Sorry about that, I certainly didn't MEAN to appropriate anyone else's work without authorization.
(...)
Looks like it was just part of the package PeteyG uploaded, and I didn't work too hard at finding out whether the creators would mind. Since you obviously do, it's out. Sorry about that.
No problem, thanks for taking it down for now, and sorry if it causes you any trouble... it's just that I don't want stuff from Standoff being re-used before it's actually used. :p
 
piarmada rocks! Say, can I help on a couple of things? I found meshes for the transports and I redid the flak gun on my spare time... stuff like that.
 

ZOmegaZ

Rear Admiral
Well, of course you can help! To be honest, it never occured to me to test transports in combat, so I'll have to do that so I can compare things. :) I'm only home on weekends until the 19th, meaning I can't get on AIM, but e-mail works fine until then.
 

Maj.Striker

Swabbie
Banned
Point worth noting...the transports in Armada had no combat capability...if they were involved in a battle and their escorts were defeated then they were captured. Often times I would attack a transport defended by several Kilrathi heavies in just an arrow to race forward and destroy their transport.
 
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