You'll never believe this...

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cavemaniac1
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You'll never believe this...

Post by cavemaniac1 » Tue May 10, 2005 10:51 am

Hi guys!

I've been playing Critical Mass for about 2 years now and I just love it.

Way back when, I designed a 'Super Fighter' that was durn near invincable and used it pretty near exclusively until the most recent version of CM came out. With the new version, I promptly built the Super Fighter (I called it a Snipe) again - but of course, it was far too expensive for the early stages of the game and was never available...

Having put a fair amount of work into designing my new Snipe, and then not being able to use it, I lost interest in designing my own ships and reverted to using the built in ships.

I quickly discovered that the only ships that suited my style of play were the Falcon, and later, the Eagle.

They are a reasonably tough ship, with a great rate of acceleration and four missile tubes which allow me to hose down large areas of the screen with unguided missiles (my speciality!!!) But God help me if I got hit from behind... The number of times I've had to eject with a long range missile locked onto my tail...

When neither a Falcon or Eagle were available, I'd use a Super Watcher with it's great stealth capability, reasoning that it was better to survive a mission than to try to complete it and die...

So, using only stock ships, I regularally get up to mission 50+, achieve hit rates of around 60% and get up to 6 Gold Crosses. Of course, by then I'm up against vast numbers of enemy ships and I have a full compliment of wingmen who are all gunning for me - so I don't last long!!!

Has anyone else been this daft????

I've just had Broadband (all praise it's blessed name) installed at work, so I can spend HOURS Net surfing every day and that's when I found time to read these forums.

The discussions on stealth, radar and manouverability were a real eye opener and provided the stimulus to go back to the drawing board and experiment with affordable, invisible, heavily armed fighters.

I've had mixed results so far, and am finding that I need to modify my gameplay tactics, but my greatest success so far is designing a wingman who seems reluctant to shoot at me(!) - a tiny (I named it 'Mote') unshielded stealth ship with fair handling capabilities and only one missile tube (hey, I STILL don't trust it not to unload on me!!).

Further designs will follow...

Many thanks to everyone who has posted their ship designs as they're giving me ideas for my variants...

Well, s'pose I should do some work now...
The one thing that we learn from history is that we don't learn from history...

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Post by Old Man Johnson » Wed May 11, 2005 4:12 am

Actually, the percentage on the Roll of Honour is your mission success rate...
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cavemaniac1
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Post by cavemaniac1 » Wed May 11, 2005 12:58 pm

Old Man Johnson wrote:Actually, the percentage on the Roll of Honour is your mission success rate...


Yep, got that, but I was refering to the missile hit rate of individual missions.

When I claimed a 60% hit rate, I was using that as an example of what is possible using stock ships with no stealth, only a moderate turning rate and extensive use of unguided missiles.

I wondered if anyone else had reached that number of missions and medals with similar ships, or if it was necessary to build something custom to handle the later missions.
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Post by Old Man Johnson » Wed May 11, 2005 1:58 pm

As Sean has stated, all the stock ships have weaknesses. Thus, building a custom ship will give you an advantage (though not too much of one).
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Post by Styro » Wed May 11, 2005 2:36 pm

I am amazed at how well you have done with the built-in ships. I guess with enough practice you get used to them, but their general lack of radar and shielding means that I will take a weaker custom ship if available rather than a stronger stock ship.

In general for my wingmen I use the Watcher series as the computer seems to play them well. I cannot remember the name of my backup series, but I think they are named after smaller birds (Sparrow comes to mind, but that could be totally wrong). They have high turning, slow acceleration, and all yellow and dark blue missiles (Daycorn and ??). I'm at work, or I'd bring up the game and look up the names. :)

When I get more money I start to use some custom wingmen. I generally do not use my own designs because the computer doesn't seem to do as well with them. I have tried out a few people's custom ships and have found that the Watcher extension class by Darrel Jones works very well (particularly the Owl and Megachirops - they have one of the highest survivability rates I've seen for wingmen).

Mostly I have used the custom ships posted here to give me ideas for creating my own ships as you have. One thing that never occurred to me until I saw someone else's ship was to put more than two Command Centers in a ship. Now all my more expensive ships have 3 or 4. I cannot tell you how many times I have been on a mission and ended up losing 3 of my four Command Centers! In my older games I would have been toast. Of course, some would say that I just need to eject or hyperspace long before it gets that bad. I tend to be a little too adventurous sometimes and it eventually kills me. Oh well. It's fun while it lasts. ;)

I recently have been using BoxZone_Author's Mote and Skelf, plus some more designs along those lines. I was already in the 50+ mission range, though and I think they are more useful earlier on. It is nice to have a ship to add to the group, though, when I have an extra handful of credits. In my experience, having more, weaker wingmen is almost always better than having fewer, stronger wingmen.
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Post by Old Man Johnson » Wed May 11, 2005 6:07 pm

I always putat least 2 command centers on a ship; on my later ships, sometimes as many as 6!

Your backup class would be the "Raven" class (at least I think that's the name). Also, the blue missiles and Geenees.

I find using scout-type manueverable wingmen works well, because then it's easy for you to see the enemy and the computers seem to do best with highly manueverable ships with lots of Daycorns and Drachans.
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Post by cavemaniac1 » Thu May 12, 2005 3:13 pm

To advance as far as I did I had to be VERY cautious.

This would usually mean abandoning my wingmen to tie up the defensive fighters while I took care of the target.

It also meant bailing out at the first sign of trouble! Those Falcons blow up almost every time they're struck from the rear!

I also had to change to an appropriate ship for specific missions - a super watcher is perfect for finding hidden targets and is surprisingly survivable. It's lack of manouverability and firepower are obvious drawbacks though.

And of course, while I'm flying the Super Watcher I've deligated my Falcon or Eagle to a wingman - who gets it blown up for me! Meaning I'm stuck with the Super Watcher until a Falcon or Eagle is available again!!

I'm having a blast designing my own ships now, though the ultimate design yet eludes me!

Good tip with the multiple control centres, as they cost and weigh virtually nothing - though I'm usually short on mounting points with all the stealth I've learned I like!!
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Post by Old Man Johnson » Fri May 13, 2005 5:54 pm

Well, there is no "ultimate" ship design; even custom ships have weaknesses. However, once you find out what kind of gameplay style you like, you can make ships that are very good for you.
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Post by Legacy » Mon May 16, 2005 2:18 pm

My favorite ships are like light, meneuverable versions of the Survivabubble, with the exception of a heavy bomber that can barely turn but is almost indestructable...

I tend to go with a small amount of powerful missiles, figuring I shouldn't shoot unless I will hit my target, with the exception of spraying down a group of slow/stopped enemies with four heavy warheads...

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Post by Old Man Johnson » Tue May 17, 2005 5:51 pm

The problem with having too few missiles is missions like Attack Fuel Depot and Attack Asteroid Mining and Shipbuilding Facility will really screw you over as you will run out of missiles (especially Attack Fuel Depot, that one's a killer).
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Legacy
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Post by Legacy » Tue May 17, 2005 8:14 pm

Yes, but I don't die at least.

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