Data on effectiveness of modules

Bacteriophage · 11172


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on: October 03, 2016, 04:27:42 pm
I've done some testing, using custom maps and ships, on the effectiveness of various modules.  I may have miscounted a bit, but the numbers here should be mostly accurate.

1 particle every 16 frames; 1.875 pps
1 energy every 30 frames; 1 eps
.533 energy per particle

Particle beam:
seems to target 1 particle per frame (could be faster)
1 energy every 10 frames; 3 eps
When trained on a single particle, the beam fires every 11 frames
.1 energy per particle slowed

1 particle every 40 frames; .75 pps
1 energy every 80 frames; .375 eps
.5 energy per particle

1 particle every 61 frames; .492 pps
1 energy every 61 frames; .492 eps
1 energy per particle

1 shot per 90 frames
1 energy every 5 frames; 6 eps
~12 particles per shot (hard to see, so this may be wrong)
1 particle every 7.5 frames; 4 pps
1.5 energy per particle

Fighter base:
2 fighters
1 particle per fighter per 8 frames; 7.5 pps
100 shots per fighter (give or take around 10 or so)
100 energy per fighter
7.5 energy per second
1 energy per particle

Grabber and Engine:
Neither seem to use any energy at all, and their effectiveness is not reduced by energy starvation.  Not what I would have expected, given the "depleted" look of engines on energy-less ships.

1 energy per second
1 struc built per second
1 energy per particle destroyed by struc
~500 frames (not precisely counted) to lathe a ship pickup or amp gem
~150 frames to lathe an energy pickup or energy mine
~667 frames to lathe an emitter
~2000 frames for an emitter to fully heal
These suggest that emitters have the same "health" as ship pickups, but heal themselves at 1/4 lathe rate.
~3333 frames to lathe a progenitor
Healing rate seems to be consistent with 1/4 lathe rate for emitters, suggesting 5X emitter "health" for progenitors.

Some shipbuilding observations:
When building a long "snake", each hull section builds every 61 frames and takes one energy (armored hull sections take 4x as long and use 4x the energy).  This is similar to (and probably exactly the same as) the rate when building multiple hull sections.  When building only one module (tested with laser and MK7), one energy every 15 frames is used.  This energy is not taken until the empty module part appears on the ship.  My (conjectural) model for shipbuilding is:
1. Build bridge at a rate of 1 energy per 15 frames, for the cost of the bridge in the editor.
2. Fill bridge with its 50 energy storage buffer.
3. Build hull out from center in steps of 61 frames, building all connected, unbuilt hull sections in each step at once.
4. During step 3, if a module outline appears, start a 2eps energy drain until the cost in the editor is paid.

Omnis carry 100 energy and can mire 285 land squares using that energy.  They mire once every 4 frames (note: the action of unmiring red mire and miring neutral land are equivalent for the following).  Thus we have:
.351 energy per particle
2.63 eps
7.5 pps
With the Omni cannon upgrade, omnis gain a cannon which shoots at a variable rate and energy consumption depending on efficiency:
1 shot per 30 frames -> 1 shot per 20 frames (2 pps -> 3 pps)
1 energy per 30 frames -> 1 energy per 40 frames (2 eps -> 1.5 eps)
1 energy per particle -> .5 energy per particle

Amp gem fire rate modification:
Laser: no effect on fire rate
Particle beam: no effect on fire rate
Cannon: 40 frames -> 28 frames (42.9% improvement)
Missile: 61 frames -> 43 frames (41.9%)
MK7: 90 frames -> 63 frames (42.9%)
Fighter base: 8 frames -> 6 frames (33.3%)
It appears that amp gems, when they have an effect, multiply fire delay by .7 and round to the nearest frame.  The rounding has no significant effect except for fighter bases, which are slightly less affected by amp gems.

100 frames to defeat a stunner
1 energy per 5 frames (6 eps)
20 energy per stunner destroyed

Hull damage:
Hull damage is difficult to test because a single particle may damage multiple hull sections, and I think this does affect energy usage (specifically, when testing particle damage against a square hull, the ship could stop only 86 particles before running out of energy, presumably due to multiple hull section hits.)  For damage of 1 square at a time, for both particles and struc, a ship, whether made of armor or normal hull, could stop about 100 particles before the ship ran out of energy (actually, the figures were 97 for particles and 101 for struc, but I'm going to ignore this discrepancy and use round numbers.)  Once depleted, an armored section took 8 hits and a normal hull section took 2 hits.  This, in combination with the ship rebuilding data, indicates the following stats for a constantly rebuilding hull section (either type):
1 energy every 61 frames (.492 eps)
2 particles per 61 frames (.984 pps)
.5 energy per particle

The effect of shields is described here by Virgil.  A shield uses 1 energy every 2 frames (15 eps).

Tactical implications:
First of all, we see that MK7s, particle beams, and fighter bases are the biggest energy hogs in the game, using significantly more energy per second than the relatively frugal cannon and missile.  The cannon shoots faster and takes less energy per second than the missile in addition to its greater versatility, leaving the only significant advantage of the missile being its homing capabilities.  Lasers never miss, are among the most energy-efficient weapons in the game, and are very powerful for their size, meaning that they can be quite effectively used offensively - as we have already seen with some custom ships.  Also, the MK7 is energy-inefficient for use on particles; it takes 3 times as much energy per particle as the cannon, while suffering an even greater chance to miss (with its longer range and all-at-once firing).  It may make a lot of sense to turn MK7's to "doppel and ship" mode when energy is a concern.  The omni's mire capability is extremely powerful (as powerful as a fighter base) and is the single most energy-efficient weapon in the game (the downside being, of course, the lack of flexibility of application of that power - only particles that actually hit land may be absorbed).  The omni cannon, while weak (1/4 the power) compared to the omni mirer, is essentially a double-fire-rate cannon module and thus can be decisive in particle fights.

Edit: added fighter base, corrected missile stats (thanks, Xalos!)
Edit 2: added engine, grabber, and lathe
Edit 3: added shipbuilding, omnis, and amp gem fire rate effects
Edit 4: added armored hull data, discharger
Edit 5: added hull damage, shields, and more tactical implications
« Last Edit: October 05, 2016, 10:53:17 pm by Bacteriophage »


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Reply #1 on: October 03, 2016, 04:34:34 pm
Beautiful analysis! I'm not sure if it's 100% right, but I agree that, simply by observation, the MK7 is not as efficient as it could be. That's why I don't use them on my ship designs (sometimes). I do use them against the players though.

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Reply #2 on: October 03, 2016, 04:39:26 pm
Yup, I've certainly noticed the quirks with MK7 and particle beams. MK7 really is the ultimate ship killing weapon, but each shot disappears after one particle hit, meaning you're basically paying a ton of energy to destroy 3 particles. I've been switching my MK7's to ships only too. And yeah, I disable particle beams most of the time in the early game, they are a support weapon that really just wastes a ton of energy if you just let it fire when not needed.


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Reply #3 on: October 03, 2016, 04:48:56 pm
I've also done some tests, but for the lasers and particle beams I got wildly different numbers for energy usage (re-ran my experiments and got the same numbers as Bacteriophage):

Command Module: stores 50 energy, variable cost to build
Laser: costs 1 en/sec (0.533 en/particle, 1.875 particles/sec), range of 10 tiles, 10 energy to build
Cannon: cost 0.75 en/sec (0.5 en/shot, 1.5 shots/sec), range of 40 tiles, 15 energy to build
Missile Launcher: costs 0.492 en/sec (1 en/shot, 0.492 shots/sec), range of 45 tiles, 20 energy to build
Particle beam: costs 3 en/sec (0.1 en/shot, 30 shots/sec), range of 30 tiles, 15 energy to build
Energy Tank: stores 500 energy, 5 energy to build
Port: range of 50 tiles, 25 energy to build
Guppy: stores 100 energy, 25 energy to build
Reactor: generates 1.5 en/sec, 20 energy to build

I would have tested the energy consumption of cannons and missiles, but I'm stuck trying to figure out the CM cost equation (it's based purely on hull displacement, and it seems to be cubic, but I can't figure out the correct coefficients. :()

EDIT: Added stats for cannons, missile launchers, guppies, and reactors, as well as stats for shots/sec for weapon modules.  I also checked how long it takes a laser to kill a 1-health particle.  Missile launchers take 61 frames to fire rather than 60, and I'm not entirely sure why.

My analysis so far of lasers, cannons, and missile launchers:
  • Cannons are the most versatile of the three, and at 0.5 energy per particle are also the most economical, but almost always miss against accelerating or hard-cornering targets, such as emergent.
  • Missile launchers have the longest range and are nearly guaranteed to hit, but cannot damage mire, struc, or enemy cannon/MK7 shots, have the slowest particle kill rate, and are the least economical weapon by far at 1 energy per particle.
  • Lasers have the fastest particle kill rate, but are very short range and aren't quite as economical as cannons at 0.533 energy per particle. However, lasers are the only weapons that can destroy enemy missiles.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2016, 12:11:53 pm by Xalos »


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Reply #4 on: October 03, 2016, 05:28:03 pm
So I recalled something about this way back in alpha, and at the time, this equation was being used (J was the creator, initially, I think): Cost=5+0.0005*(Hull-9)^2.5. That was over a year ago, however, so lots of things may have changed since then, and really Virgil is the final word on it.

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Reply #5 on: October 03, 2016, 08:50:56 pm
Thanks for the data, Xalos.  I also counted 61 frames for the missile delay, but chalked it up to counting error.  I'm not sure what's going on with the particle beam and laser data, though.  I redid my experiment and got the same results.  One possibility: if you're frame-advancing on 4X speed, it skips 4 frames instead of 1...  Perhaps this is the cause of the discrepancy?


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Reply #6 on: October 04, 2016, 03:33:38 am
One possibility: if you're frame-advancing on 4X speed, it skips 4 frames instead of 1...  Perhaps this is the cause of the discrepancy?

I have no idea; I thought I did the tests at 1x speed but after re-testing I get the same results as you. It would explain both results being off by exactly a factor of four. In either case I've updated my stats with the correct numbers.


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Reply #7 on: October 04, 2016, 07:15:07 am
I also did some testing just now (really should have seen if there was a thread up yet lol) but of the things I tested I came to similar conclusions.
Reactors generate 1.5 Eps
Tanks have a capacity of 500 E
Cannons take 0.5 E per shot
Command modules have an internal storage of 50 E

And I tested some AMP-gem stuff:
AMP-gems DO:
-increase range of all modules with a range (seems to vary, lathe got about 15-20% while discharger got around 40% increase, did not test further modules)
-increase fire rate of weapons (tested only cannons in the editor, but I think I noticed it on launchers and particle beams as well, so probably all weapons)
-reduce damage taken by armor (I did not test this, but virgil explained it in a post about shields)

-increase lathing speed (tested with picking up AMP-gems)
-increase reactor output
-increase tank size
-increase built speed (and therefore repair speed)
-increase movement speed
-strenghten shileds( again, confirmed by virgil)

Not tested but might be affected: Energy consumption of modules, guppies, grabbers and fighters

Also, movement takes no energy but your ship still moves as if engine less if out of energy and ships can get a maximum of 30 EPS from a mine (again, not tested but stated by virgil)


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Reply #8 on: October 04, 2016, 07:46:56 am
It is SO nice to see this information start to crop up. Thank you to everyone who tested these out. I'd like to ask one question in particular that I've not seen anyone address yet. When building or rebuilding a ship, how is the energy used? What order do things get done in? Does each 1 energy go to a specific 1 thing? Is each 1 energy split into as many pieces as are needed at the time? Or is it perhaps that each 1 energy gives a full 1 energy to all systems at once? That'd be really awesome, but I can't imagine it's that one. Do ships build any faster if they have excess energy?


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Reply #9 on: October 04, 2016, 08:00:35 am
Energy goes into consolidated storage. Various systems then try to tap this. Hull builds in parallel, so it must tap as much power as possible up to some limit (per hull piece), and slow construction if insufficient energy is available. Modules likely work similarly.

So, I would guess that power is evenly split between all systems.

Note: It can't be one energy to all systems, otherwise a ship with multiple tank modules could farm energy without reactors.

As to build rate, more power only helps if there's a need for a lot at once after a lower-power period for the internal storage to charge. For example, bridge builds, 50 energy is requested over 50 frames (~1.66 sec), and hull starts. The eight or so tiles building when they become visible don't drain too much from storage (it's restored faster). As large ships expand, their power needs go up as more tiles are built simultaneously. At this point a full charge can give a small boost to construction.

So no, having 100 spare energy on board won't build any faster than having 6 spare energy. As long as there is enough power, build will go as fast as possible.

At least that's how I would have built it.

Edit: Possibly modules would consume in a queue, to fairly distribute nonfractional energy.

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Reply #10 on: October 04, 2016, 08:18:00 am
For testing purposes I build a ship with only 3x9 tiles, and it had the command module in the back, in front of that a reactor and at the very front a tank. Reactor started building before the hull below the tank was even finished, tank still finished first. At least if enough energy is available all modules willl build at the same time and I assume the energy distribution is just as with the hull, equally spread out.


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Reply #11 on: October 04, 2016, 09:54:52 am
Note: It can't be one energy to all systems, otherwise a ship with multiple tank modules could farm energy without reactors.
I hadn't thought of that, that's a clever proof :D And yeah, I strongly suspected it didn't work that way. Otherwise gigantic ships would build MUCH faster than they currently do.
As for the rest of your post, thank you very much. It's nice to start actually understanding how this game works.


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Reply #12 on: October 04, 2016, 10:19:26 am
your ship still moves as if engine less if out of energy
Are you sure of this?  I set up a race between two identical ships with engines, one depleted of energy (from firing its missiles, which take exactly 1 energy each, so we know it is fully depleted), and the ships moved at the same rate.


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Reply #13 on: October 04, 2016, 10:25:48 am
The engine thing wasn't something I tested but something I thought to have noticed during playing. Seems I saw wrong and probably got the engine killed the times I thought to "notice" this.


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Reply #14 on: October 04, 2016, 06:55:46 pm
For complete drain, hit it with a Stunner. Certainly that will drain all reserves.

Light but constant damage could also work to drain power completely, with the last hull repairs remaining incomplete as the race goes on.

It is not impossible that a ship will keep 1 energy in stock as a manoeuvering reserve, because a stopped ship is often a dead ship if it's already out of power range.

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