Star Control

Current State of Super Melee

Published on Monday, July 3, 2017 By Volusianus In Founders Starbase

So after sitting down and playing Super Melee in the current build, I've had time to mull over the current available roster. There's definitely something fun lurking somewhere in the void between the parts we've been given, but it's not quite there yet, and that's okay. It takes iteration to get anything worthwhile crafted.

I also took the liberty of tweaking some of the ship XMLs, and here are my thoughts so far:

  • Dan'nath - Honestly, I don't see anything wrong with this ship. Very fun to play, readable enough to be fun to play against, and it's just so thematically delicious. Verdict: Almost Gold. Only thing missing is a series of visual tweaks that I'm sure are already being dealt with (ie the telegraph rings around the singularity).
  • Tywom - The main gun is incredibly powerful, and the shots are easy to read, but the range balances it. My primary issue with this ship is its turn rate and the strength of its turrets. I feel like the rate of fire on the turrets should be reduced by at least 20%. Verdict: Beta ready.
  • Drenkend -
    • Just to make sure I know how this ship is SUPPOSED to function:
      • The idea is that this ship slows the enemy with its primary gun and launches clone marines into the enemy ship, which deal massive damage and die.
    • The primary problem with this is that the crew does not regenerate, and your primary weapon deals no damage. This leads to finite damage, which can leave you a sitting duck. Now I know what the counterpoint is "The Dreadnaught and Nemesis functioned very similarly, but had no regenerating crew." Yes, but they also had other means of dealing damage. My solutions would either be to cause the primary to deal a little damage (either direct or a DoT to coincide with the slow debuff), or keep both weapons as-is and let the Drenkend regenerate crew very slowly (a rate of maybe 1 every 5 seconds?) Verdict: Broken.
  • Pinthi - I like this ship quite a bit, thematically. It's organic, it uses corrosives as a weapon. Wonderful. Absolutely wonderful. The abilities feel right, as well. Definitely piques my interest as a swarmophile. I'm perfectly okay with the slow thrusting speed, but the turn rate and rate of fire of the primary weapon need work. My proposition would be to increase the Pinthi's turn rate and increasing the primary weapon's rate of fire to the point that it's basically spewing corrosives like a firehose of acid. The spawned Pinthi spore also moves way too slowly to be effective, in my opinion. Other than that, feels good. Verdict: Beta Ready.
  • Earthling -
    • I suppose this was going to come up sooner or later. There's already an mild grumble on Discord about the state of this ship, and I agree to most of these points:
      • The ship does not match the description of the human race more or less being the bottom of the galactic food chain - We should be wielding the equivalent of spears and rocks, not radiation cannons.
      • The primary weapon deals entirely too much damage and tracks way too well at too long of a distance.
      • The Point Defense Laser has too short of a cooldown.
    • So what would I do to fix this ship? Honestly, I wouldn't touch the PDL. I think it's fine. The ideal fix would be to nerf how well the nuke tracks its target, and reduce its damage by roughly 40%. I might even reduce the duration of the nuke to 2.1 seconds. Verdict: Beta Ready
  • The Measured - I'm so glad that absolute movement is back for this ship. Almost makes up for the missing Arilou Skiff. My primary problems with this ship are...mostly aesthetic, to be honest. It makes no sense to me that a race as sophisticated as the Measured are flying around...basically headbutting ships to death. I feel like they'd be more likely to use at least mass drivers or plasma of some sort. Keep the charging damage if you want as a secondary weapon, but ramming isn't right. Verdict: Back to Pre-Production
  • Trandals - I don't necessarily dislike this ship. The Secondary feels wonderful, especially against the Scryve Battlecruiser. The primary weapon feels weak, and I don't know if I'm just not using it right or if it's not functioning as intended. I feel like the primary should extend indefinitely until 1 of 2 criteria are met: The player releases the fire key (collapsing the beam at the end of the bolas) OR the beam between the bolas meets a target (collapsing the beam onto the target). Otherwise the rest of the stats are fine. Verdict: Back to Pre-Production
  • Scryve - I love this ship. This is the big, bad, overcompensating deathship that the game needs. Thematically solid. I love that the beam prevents you from turning because of how "ZOMG FAHRIN' MAH LAZOOOOOORZ" it is. This ship's primary weapon is THE reason we need to not start the battle flying at each other at full speed. Open the battle mashing your primary fire and bam: dead meat inside a floating sardine can. I feel like the flak should at least attempt to prioritize space near your opponent if the opponent is within range (if it's not already doing this). Verdict: Almost Gold
  • Mowlings - SHIPS FOR THE SHIP GOD (BULLETS FOR THE BULLET THRONE). This ship is great. So great in fact, that its secondary is the only thing I use with it. I literally spend the entire battle running away from the enemy and mashing alt. We might want to look into making Jeff something that isn't controlled: instead giving a secondary weapon that does something interesting and increases the chance of Jeff spawning every time it successfully hits. Gives it more of a Pkunk "Hallelujah!" moment feeling. Verdict: Almost Beta Ready
  • Menkmank - This ship feels really good. As with the Dan'nath, I wouldn't change much about it. Has a nice Merc-like feel. The canister mines are something that gives the player options for creating void zones, which leads to more interesting gameplay, in my opinion. My only gripe is that the ally is...really dumb. And slow. Tutor the ally, please? Verdict: Almost Gold

Let me know if I missed any ships that are currently available in the current build.