Gameplay advice please

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Gameplay advice please

Post by Nitestalkr on Tue May 14, 2013 12:29 pm

Hey fellow pilots. I have been working on my defense against tracker ships recently, With a bit of success. But there is one type of ship that seems to be my kryptonite.

It can kill me almost every time despite me constantly changing tactics to try to beat them. it makes me feel a bit like......



BEAM SHIPS.

Can someone please give me some advice on this as i'm at a loss on what to do about them.

Thank you
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nostromo on Tue May 14, 2013 2:35 pm

Everyone who plays on a regular basis probably already knows my common ship to fly is the F-3X. This typically meas that I am usually at risk of even the moderately good players picking something like the M3 or the M10 to counter me. In my experience the best way to counter these players, with the greatest rate of success, is to find them first and at a distance greater than 2k meters. Watching the Score Tab also helps me to memorize the tags that run those Beamers.

Now after finding them and learning who plays what changes my style for fighting a little. For the FM-25 Nighthawk, never fly Head-to-Head against these. The Night hawk has better shields and the same fire rate on the rockets as the F-3X, so in a rockets only dual the F-3X should lose if the NightHawk knows how to maneuver. I tend to look for these players and then proceed to try and force a wild shot from them, the beam is deadly but it's cool down will be it's death. Use typically evasion tactics to avoid the rockets as you close, jousting is a bad idea so that just leaves the Death Spiral. As I said before the FM-25 should more than handle a Death Spiral with a F-3X, however the Sidewinder has the Acceleration in it's boost to usually catch the Nighthawks tail.

For the Light Beamers my sidewinder runs into a complicated issue, the beams fire rate is much faster and some pilots are careful enough to insure up to three shots in a row before being forced into a cool down period. These ships tend to be weak in their fuel source so use that to your advantage, whether in pursuit of escape, making corners and boosting out of them tend to leave your tails high and dry while you still have little under half your tank left.

The M3 Cobra is usually forced into short range combat with those MG's and the beams are used only for opening and finishing shots on most craft, as well as the random snipe from time to time. Here you may have to rely on catching them with their pants down fighting someone else or just oblivious. Their MG's have the added bonus of having a Beamers Heatsink for ammo, meaning SO much more Dakka! Again here you want to try and out pace their fuel, with out boost they're nothing to worry about. That is unless you like dancing in open space like a shooting gallery duck.

I'm not sure what the issue is with the M10 Krait, either I hardly see any or they actively ignore my presence. Their only saving grace is the multiple shot s they can make with their beams before cool down, the rockets hardly stand well against a good Sidewinder anymore than a Mamba's rockets. These guys I tend to use a tactic that I use for all Beamers, circle and then strike. These guys have a poor turn rate and can easily be out paced by a F-3X's speed, just be careful about jumping out. They may have tracked you well enough to at least time one shot before you engage at a proper Sidewinder distance.

However, if it's The Anger your hunting... Good Luck; Have Fun; and Pray! lol!
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nutz on Tue May 14, 2013 3:02 pm

Nitestalkr wrote: it makes me feel a bit like......



It may not be as hopeless as you think LOL. www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6NyQSHTVOU‎

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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nitestalkr on Tue May 14, 2013 3:24 pm

Now i just need a river in space Smile

Really good footage though.
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Loki on Tue May 14, 2013 4:04 pm

Break line of sight as often as you can when you know there's a beamship out there; they can't hit what they can't see.

Against beamships, tracker missiles or rockets are often the easiest tool; you force them into deciding whether to break off from shooting at you to deal with a missile or to suffer some damage (severe damage for the light beamships).

Beam fire rate vs damage potential is actually the same on all three beamships; you can manage 2 shots for each ship in the same time period, though the Krait and Cobra fire single beams and can pop another shot off almost immediately.
The Cobra has the lowest DPS if two beams are fired because the beams and machine guns share the same heatsink/cooldown, while the other two ships have separate cooldowns for rockets and beams. If used with one beam and leftover guns, Cobra DPS jumps significantly (~1200-1400 DPS, depending on the size of the target and how good your aim is).

Kraits and Nighthawks can do a lot of damage with their rockets and beams at close range by simultaneously clicking the right and left mouse buttons; this is well over the amount to destroy a medium ship and can nearly eliminate a Hammerhead/Piranha/Swordfish.
A well-flown Cobra can wipe out the above list or severely weaken a Stingray if they can avoid the heavy cannon, though a Cobra's light armour vs high DPS ships usually doesn't end well for the Cobra.
Avoid head to head with beamships as much as possible. Alternately, rookies in beamships are impatient and will often fire as soon as they can whether or not it's a clean shot and usually don't use their rockets enough; if you can trick someone into firing recklessly, your chances improve significantly.

After your cover runs out, an evasive spiral pattern while approaching head-on is decent for avoiding getting tagged against all but beam aces. Put your mouse outside and above/below the HUD circle and roll (A or D keys) in the same direction to spiral (ex; if you aim right, roll right). Add some boost and you've got a good chance.

After avoiding line of sight and head to head, flanking from behind cover is the best approach (cover can mean "behind 3 teammates"). Wait until they're pointing their beams at someone else before breaking cover (watch for their beams or listen for it to fire if you've got no music playing).

Get close as fast as you can, but not if it puts you at risk of the above; you're worth more to your team fighting than sitting on the hangar launchpad for being reckless.

In addition to the above;

VS Cobra
Once you close the distance, you often only get one pass at a good Cobra pilot, so make it count; their ship can out-turn every ship (worth flying in S&D) and a good pilot will stay on your tail and chew you up with their bottomless machine guns (2500 damage to overheat). A Cobra is fragile, so it doesn't take much to bring one down, and since they're the slowest light fighter, flanking from the side or behind is a great way to put them out of the fight; they can't run away well, but they will outlast you in tight-quarters.

VS Krait
Head to head is suicide; their double-rockets are instant death for light ships, devastating to others, and if they tag you with a beam, all they need to do is bump you to finish you off. They have the fastest cooldown to use a second beamshot, so know that another shot could be coming very quickly after the first. Quicker than a Cobra or Nighthawk, they also share the Cobra's light armour, though they're not as in-control; if you're patient, you can expect to out-turn one in most cases and can often panic them into firing at least one of their beams wildly. The area blast from the rockets can bring your shields down and make you more vulnerable to a fatal beam-shot, so watch for those. Kraits are very difficult to out-run due to their long range and high afterburner speed, though they run out of fuel quickly; if you're running a flag, break line of sight soon and weave between the asteroids to keep them off your back.

VS Nighthawk
Slow, but with twice the armour of the other beamships, Nighthawks learn quickly to be patient with their beams; the long cooldown time leaves them vulnerable and often means the difference of landing a hit or dying. Firing twin-beams means a lot of instant damage at their disposal, killing any light ship and severely damaging medium ships; a single rocket will kill medium ships after getting tagged with a double beam. Their fast rocket reload gives them a very effective back-up weapon while waiting for their beams to cool down and the strong armour often gives them the opportunity to fire their beams more than once at close range. The rockets provide an effective screen vs missiles and will keep light fighters in danger while trying to out flank them. Being as slow as they are, you can panic them into using their afterburner to get away or to try to turn faster; this is a fatal mistake. Keep your speed low (no afterburner, reduce your throttle with D or mousewheel) and you can often out-turn them. The danger with this last tactic is that they often lurk near the carrier and your low speed puts you at risk to turret fire; the Nighthawk can claim a kill on you due to rocket burst + turrets, even if they miss with beams.
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Boeing_747 on Tue May 14, 2013 4:15 pm

Nitestalkr wrote:
.....
Can someone please give me some advice on this as i'm at a loss on what to do about them.
....
be fast, be inconspicuous, be unpredictable and most importantly:



sunny
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nutz on Tue May 14, 2013 4:43 pm

Boeing_747 wrote:
Nitestalkr wrote:
.....
Can someone please give me some advice on this as i'm at a loss on what to do about them.
....
be fast, be inconspicuous, be unpredictable and most importantly:



sunny

Nice also, I was thinking this
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by the-anger on Tue May 14, 2013 7:28 pm

the best advice i can give, is to understand how the 3 beam ships fly, and what their gamespace is. (gamespace = set of possible options / outcomes in a game). personal play style can only restrict gamespace, so my play style is to master the gamespace of any ship i fly in order to have all the possible maneuvers at my disposal (in case you were wondering).

won't repeat what has been said, but i will add this much...

firstly, know the firing rates of the beam ships. gaps in offensive ability are the obvious pressure points, and it gives you an idea of what the pilot is thinking if you know what weapons they can fire at any moment.

nighthawk has a 4.7 (roughly) second cooldown with beams, 1.75 second cooldown with rockets (ie like sidewinder / G5). dual beams eat up the whole heatsink and it takes 4.7 seconds to come back to zero, otherwise it would be every 1.25 seconds.

krait can fire beams the most effectively, having a slightly better cooling rate than cobra (from experience, not sure on numbers). be very careful when facing a krait... what makes a krait very scary in the right hands is the fact that it can fire 3 beams in one heatsink if you space them out slightly to a firing rate of about 1.8 seconds (2 beams per lax rocket fire). what makes it scarier still, is if the player knows the 'capped' firing rate (= 700 / cooling rate of krait) or they wait until their heat is almost 0 to fire again. they can sustain this firing rate indefinitely, and then if they pause for a little too long, expect a burst of 2-3 beams in succession. often this is how i finish off bombers in CA - i chase them about, conserving afterburner to make it look like i can just barely keep up, and firing beams at a slow but steady rate, until i judge that they won't survive a burst of 2 beams and rockets at which point i creep closer and unload about 1000 pts of damage much faster than expected. one last thing to remember - krait has two rockets, but can remote detonate one of them so long as one is still there to remote detonate (or conversely, remote detonate one early, leaving another rocket still flying forward).

cobra's beam cannon is largely a joke (yes, it has a lot of heatsink capacity and above average cooling rate, but still not enough to make beams a feature). the most it is is a surprise alpha shot here and there; the MG on it is scarier and plan accordingly. you still probably don't want to tempt fate by charging one in another light ship, otherwise it is like the X99's little half-brother in terms of mobility and weight-class damage.

since the beams make up the majority of beam ships' damage, their goal is primarily to position themselves where they can get a clear shot at you. i can't stress enough that this is key to avoiding being hit by beams (not necessarily enough to survive the fight though). to this end, it is safe to assume that accuracy is not going to be a factor in your survival, as most aces can hit reliably (50% or better) with beams to 1000m (players that are good with beams will extend this to 1500m easily). it also means that their flying patterns will differ from typical fighters because of the longer cooldown on beam weapons (1.25 seconds) - in other words, it is sometimes more advantageous for beam ships to break line of sight and twist in a counter-rotation (in the sense of where you expect them to go) in time for the next beam shot (something that can be suicidal with weapons requiring multiple hits like MG).

too often this is how i catch out other aces with beams... i don't (well, try not to) waste any time at all with aiming once the fight enters MG range or closer, if i can't sweep across the screen and hit (not that i do literally, just a test of whether to try or not; or very quickly zoom as i sweep), i re-position myself so i can and use rockets to bait or coerce my target into flying somewhere convenient, if my own movement is not sufficient for a clean shot. infrequently (mostly with krait) i will use beams to the same effect, missing deliberately to keep my opponent from staying still if they are trying to open up a shot at me in the interim.

and finally, be very very mindfull of what flight trajectory you take while you're within beam reach of someone who is targeting you. i have described at length my aiming process on another thread here, but summarizing it i aim 'against the background'. beams are too fast to see the projectile travel to the untrained eye; as far as numbers go, 3000m/s. at 1000m, it takes a third of a second for the beam to hit, and it means at 1000m if you fly in a predictable path for at least 1/3 of a second, you are setting yourself up for a beam hit.

'predictable' covers any of the following:
flying at a constant speed, in a set line or spiral (all turns are sections of a deformed spiral if sustained).
flying slowly.
flying through the same place often from A to B.
drifting at a constant rate (drift without boost support).
reversing direction via retrograde (ie, turning 180 degrees to reverse, and slowing down in the process).
flying head to head

so yeah, hard weapon to avoid, hard weapon to learn to aim. that covers the tactics, now for some 4 pieces of helpful advice...

1. if someone proficient with beams is on the prowl, they are often your first target if you want to survive, especially if in range and in sight. use the same priority as with missile spammers who know when to shoot as a starting point, and adjust as necessary.

2. use cover as soon as you can. seriously. so many just fly into the open or give chase thinking they can out-damage, out-aim or out-smart a beam ship. maybe you can. often you wont.

3. vary your attack patterns. they're called patterns because they follow the same rules every time. no need to be ashamed of using something that works, just be mindful that since aiming with beams involves a lot of target observation, this won't go unnoticed and sooner or later will be exploited.

4. chasing an ace (in general), as your only tactic, not a good idea. they will see you coming on the radar even if they're not looking in your direction - i roll and turn constantly to keep radar info on people i can't see, in view, so i know how far they are; keeping tabs on distance and direction, i can form a rough picture of where they are and where they are headed. if i know that (and i can track about 3-4 enemy players this way at my best, using contrails as hints only) i have at my discretion the capacity to attack or evade as it suits the situation.

oh, and anyone who has been the victims of my beams on euro, keep this in mind - due to the lag there, i have to stay 300-500m ahead of my targets and evade with preemptive reflexes (human gamer avg reflex speed - approx 0.15 seconds; round-trip ping on euro for me - 0.5-0.6 seconds). if you want to see impressive beams, hop onto australia and give me a holler...

good luck Very Happy


Last edited by the-anger on Wed May 15, 2013 5:33 am; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nightwing on Tue May 14, 2013 10:21 pm

=BWS=Nutz wrote:Nice also, I was thinking this

Galaxy Quest? My god, that brings back memories. Remember the part with the rock monster? What about when they tried to beam up a creature, and it turned inside out and exploded?

*Nostalgia*
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by the-anger on Tue May 14, 2013 10:37 pm

... and the interspecies copulation
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nightwing on Tue May 14, 2013 10:53 pm

the-anger wrote:... and the interspecies copulation

WTF?
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by the-anger on Wed May 15, 2013 12:19 am

last word on beam firing rates...

input B = number of beams you wish to fire in equal intervals.
input H = max heat of the ship.
input R = heat cooling rate of the ship.
output P = minimum firing period / interval.

P = (700 - (H - 700) / (B-1)) / R

for krait, H = 1200 & R = 250
krait/2 beams = 1.25 due to beam rate (actual 0.8 )
krait/3 beams = 1.8 second interval minimum
krait/4 beams = 2.133 second interval minimum
etc...
krait/inf beams = 2.8 (should be clear if rewriting above as a limit to infinity)

for cobra, H = 1000 & R = 225
cobra/2 beams = 1.78 second interval minimum
cobra/3 beams = 2.44 second interval minimum
cobra/4 beams = 2.67 second interval minimum
etc...
cobra/inf beams = 3.11 second interval minimum

does not apply to nighthawk, as it doesnt have any heat capacity to spare when firing.

edit - how to use this info:
1. if you can estimate how often someone is firing their beam cannon, you have a clue how their heat management is going (and longer term, you understand their play style with beams better).
or 2. how often you can fire if you want to get X beams fired without pausing.


Last edited by the-anger on Wed May 15, 2013 5:31 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by eltazar on Wed May 15, 2013 3:13 am

well, its just in opposite from what i should do, because i master the beam ships... but i can tell you, in short of Angers great post, that most annoying what my target can do while flying beam ship is moving. i mean - do not stay in one direction.

beam ships are most fragile from sides, cause they are probably seeking target - if you can sneak from lower behind-side position, well, you have a +1 in kill tab Smile whenever you want to fight on distance, or head-to-head, you are a dead man.

i really do not know how to avoid beams when I play against Stray or Adama... they are the best beams pilots I've seen. but making your moving unpredictable is the best way to avoid anything.

and well, sometimes, you just get hit by the beam no matter what you do. its just because the beam pilot know where you will be in next second, and he will fire in there. wish him it Smile

for me, as a beamer, is most difficult to hit someone who is flying in opposite of all three axis (do not know if i make myself clear, sorry for my english Smile ) I mean - if you fly from left to right (from beamers POV), you are an easy kill. if you fly from left to right, up, and away from me, i cannot hit you even if I have guided beams Smile

PS: and maybe take a look at a vid in my sig, if you already did not... maybe it will show you how the beamers think and how they fly.

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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by the-anger on Wed May 15, 2013 3:34 am

Nightwing wrote:
the-anger wrote:... and the interspecies copulation

WTF?
so you don't recall the guy making out with the alien who's race is the main plot?
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Boeing_747 on Wed May 15, 2013 3:36 am

Nite, maybe you should start flying beam-ships, so to speak, to find the enemy from within? bom
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nitestalkr on Wed May 15, 2013 3:41 am

First of all thank you to everyones advice, some really good stuff there that would have taken a while to write.

I think i will need to fly a few to understand them fully as i've only really flown them for maybe 10 minute in total lol.

Been looking for something to replace the F3-X aswell Razz
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by the-anger on Wed May 15, 2013 5:45 am

it just occurred to me this has not been properly mentioned...

when your speed is at its lowest, hitting the afterburner still gives you the same speed boost regardless of your throttle. tapping boost for half-second durations while flying as slow as you can gives you very unpredictable motion especially when close to a beam ship (warning: not recommended at range, since the moment you forget to boost again you're still for long enough to be picked off).

i use this approach myself with beam ships (mostly on nighthawk due to stats) when dealing with stationary G5's / heavy ships / bombers (using their tactic against them with frequent displacement to hold an advantage) and there isn't time to circle around for a clean shot or perhaps not enough room to evade or hide.

might help...
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nitestalkr on Wed May 15, 2013 5:47 am

wow, thats a good trick, i must remember that. thanks
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Loki on Wed May 15, 2013 6:33 am

the-anger wrote:
Nightwing wrote:
the-anger wrote:... and the interspecies copulation

WTF?
so you don't recall the guy making out with the alien who's race is the main plot?

Guy (Sam Rockwell): "That's not right!"
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by longshot on Wed May 15, 2013 6:44 am

Well it was good enough for Captain Kirk...
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Nightwing on Wed May 15, 2013 5:00 pm

I remember that. He was with Uhura's room mate, Gayla. She is the closest I've seen to Star Trek using the alien stereotype. (Gayla had green skin...)
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by Loki on Wed May 15, 2013 5:03 pm

Pretty sure Longshot was referring to the original Captain Kirk Wink
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Re: Gameplay advice please

Post by longshot on Wed May 15, 2013 8:00 pm

Absolutely. Bill Shatner used the show as a vehicle for making out with a different green or blue skinned half naked woman every week.

http://io9.com/5827581/10-things-you-probably-didnt-know-about-the-original-star-trek
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Re: Gameplay advice please

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