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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Max_Caine said:

If gunners can only shoot what they see then that's fine, I can kite enemies back to the dropship. It's not hard because enemies are predisposed to behave aggressively - they will seek my troops out. This is especially true in raids and terror sites. If the issue is the LZ is hot, then the solution isn't to make special cases which are open to abuse beyond their intended value, but to re-jig the map so the LZ isn't hot. 

Surely “kiting” (not quite sure what that means , sorry) could be described as a “degenerate” tactic as it’s playing to the way that the aliens are programmed to behave? I must admit to looking at this perceived problem through the real world view. Perhaps it’s me not looking at it as a game view.

Edited by stewpidbear
Two fingered typing!

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5 hours ago, Decius said:

Yeah, the intended gameplay change of having turrets on the dropship would be to prevent having the entire craft one-shot by good enemy positioning.

But enemy positioning can be controlled directly, and if the turrets are effective at their primary role then they will create the degenerate behavior of baiting enemies into their killzone for free kills; if the turrets aren't effective they will not accomplish their primary goal.

Primary goal? You mean supression?

Because machineguns are rather sub-bar in terms of performance. Having one or two that can fire once a turn in a limited range doesn't sound like it would influence balance or difficulty much. Especially on bigger maps.

And there are many ways to balance it - limited ammo, limited rang, enemies that keep their distance (no baiting), more enemies, etc...

 

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4 hours ago, stewpidbear said:

“Degenerate behavior”? I really don’t think that a legitimate real world tactic can be described that way. Another suggestion would be to change the Aliens behaviour by not approaching/retreating from the landing zone.

Yes, rewarding players for pulling enemies into an area where they have automatic suppression is a degenerate behavior.

 

Close air support is part of the dominant real-world tactics precisely because it isn't even remotely fair. Games are intended to be fair and challenging in a way that a well-planned military operation isn't.

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1 hour ago, TrashMan said:

Primary goal? You mean supression?

Because machineguns are rather sub-bar in terms of performance. Having one or two that can fire once a turn in a limited range doesn't sound like it would influence balance or difficulty much. Especially on bigger maps.

And there are many ways to balance it - limited ammo, limited rang, enemies that keep their distance (no baiting), more enemies, etc...

 

Oh, if the turrets don't kill or suppress all of the enemies that can offer reaction fire into the dropship on the first turn, they don't satisfy the primary purpose for which they were proposed. Making them only as good as a machinegunner is at that job is like suggesting that someone use a machinegunner to suppress aliens to prevent reaction fire from wrecking everyone.

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1 hour ago, Decius said:

Yes, rewarding players for pulling enemies into an area where they have automatic suppression is a degenerate behavior.

 

Close air support is part of the dominant real-world tactics precisely because it isn't even remotely fair. Games are intended to be fair and challenging in a way that a well-planned military operation isn't.

Sorry mate, I totally disagree with you. If there is only one way, for instance smoke to get out of the dropship, that is a failing in a tactical game. Being able to suppress, which is a tactic in the game already, the area so your troops can engage the enemy with a reasonable chance of success ( not garanteed!) at the start kf the mission is just another option to be used. For instance the Los in the port/industrial zone would offer only a very small area of suppression compared to the size of the map. More tactical options so you can play different ways so your not shoe horned into doing it just one gaming way is better surely? I know don’t call me Surely!;)

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Definitely true. XDiv has that rule where Terror Missions have all aliens start outside of the immediate houses, which tends to lead to this interesting "oh crap, where are they, hide, hide!" situation, that, in reality, just makes that first less likely to ruin the player so hard they quit the game. I kinda feel like we needed to either be able to send more people to take those hits (See XCOM Rookie Cloud Cover), or improved armor that can take a couple hits, even if the enemy count goes way up as a result. 

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I could be wrong about this, but ... it seems to me from trial and error that if I send my high reaction pt soldiers out of the copter first (and these are usually my assault-style troopers) they seem less likely to be shot by enemy over-watch than my other units.  Then, I can engage the initial threats with my higher reaction pt soldiers from a different point than the inside of the copter - even if I don't kill the alien(s) with that soldier, they are now focused on his or her position rather than the open copter.  The other thing to do if you are expecting enemy fire into your transport is figure out which units you can have exit w/o triggering over-watch and have them bail before you start engaging in the risky business of opening fire on a waiting alien.  Anyone who can't easily leave w/o the prospect of getting shot at should take a knee before the firefight ensues.  

Back to my first statement, though - if my high reaction pt units can't take out the LZ aliens, I usually follow up next with the Machine Gun.  Again, if I recall correctly, Suppression supersedes any Over-watch they might have had.  Rifle-toters can then clean up the closer, suppressed aliens and snipers can ping at any other enemy units further away that you assault units may have discovered.

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My high-reaction soldiers have melee weapons (shotguns) because I need them to breach and clear UFOs.

I suppose you could use the rookies as distractions for hot LZs, and they would only need enough reaction to get away from the non-ablative meat.

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Half the time if there's an alien spawned close to the LZ, that alien isn't even looking at the dropship. If the alien isn't looking at the dropship, they won't turn until someone shoots and hits them, giving me plenty of time to get everyone out the bus and into cover. If I face Psyons AND they are looking at the dropship then first things first, smoke out, then advance under the cover of smoke because you can't target through it. If facing Sebillians they have terrible reflexes so I can get out before they realise their gun has a trigger. If I've got combat shields then I use that guy to draw fire if necessary. When facing a raid a good strategy for me is to get out all one side. On the docklands map I usually get everyone out the side with all the crates because there's plenty of cover. Getting everyone heading in one direction means I can maximise the odds against the aliens spawned in one side while aliens the other side have to catch up, and by the time the aliens on the other side have caught up, I've gunned down all the aliens one side. 

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12 hours ago, Max_Caine said:

Half the time if there's an alien spawned close to the LZ, that alien isn't even looking at the dropship. If the alien isn't looking at the dropship, they won't turn until someone shoots and hits them, giving me plenty of time to get everyone out the bus and into cover. If I face Psyons AND they are looking at the dropship then first things first, smoke out, then advance under the cover of smoke because you can't target through it. If facing Sebillians they have terrible reflexes so I can get out before they realise their gun has a trigger. If I've got combat shields then I use that guy to draw fire if necessary. When facing a raid a good strategy for me is to get out all one side. On the docklands map I usually get everyone out the side with all the crates because there's plenty of cover. Getting everyone heading in one direction means I can maximise the odds against the aliens spawned in one side while aliens the other side have to catch up, and by the time the aliens on the other side have caught up, I've gunned down all the aliens one side. 

You can't target through smoke now? Interesting, sounds like it'll be viable for Insane this time around. Yeah, since the last patch, suppression has really changed the game, it feels fantastic at the moment. Also, really appreciating that you can miss a shot and hit behind them now, and it actually lets you know. Also, grenade rushing a high TU team from the drop ship makes for A-one hell of a stylish first turn, and B-some really safe landings. 

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If there's different transition screens for vehicles, and the Valkyrie makes a comeback, I hope it looks a bit like the Armored Core 2 drop pods (that the game surprisingly never actually used). 

 

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34 minutes ago, stewpidbear said:

Looking at the video I now feel earth needs battle suits..................;)

XD has mechs, for what it's worth. I only asked them to add Armored Cores about 800 times, hahaha

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Not that I expect this to be implemented, but theoretically shouldn't the birds be taking off within a round or two of dropping off the troops? That's an awful big and expensive target to be sitting on the ground in the middle of a fire zone for an extended period of time?

Personally, I'd like the idea of having gunners on the transport that could provide support fire while the troops debarked and then force the transport to take off by the third or 4th round regardless of whether the troops were fully debarked or not. I'd also like the transport to be targetable and damageable by the Aliens.

All that's probably a little more hardcore then what the Dev's are interested in however.

 

Alternatively, if these really are clandestine, low intensity missions.... shouldn't the troops be getting dropped off some safe distance away...and enter the mission zone on foot?  Maybe enter the mission Xcom2 style?

I know that's probably not as popular a choice as having the transport on the map, but thematically it might make more sense for covert style missions.

 

 

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My headcanon is that the 'covert' nature of the mission is why there isn't a 105mm artillery piece flying around, and why the craft doesn't have a minigun hanging out the side.

Part of the mission is to make the people wearing off-the shelf suits and flak jackets with "TLA" stenciled on the back have to divert as few civilians as possible. The gossip over a couple of helicopters flying around is much easier to quiet down than gossip over a couple of helicopters flying around shooting.

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Oh, if the turrets don't kill or suppress all of the enemies that can offer reaction fire into the dropship on the first turn, they don't satisfy the primary purpose for which they were proposed. Making them only as good as a machinegunner is at that job is like suggesting that someone use a machinegunner to suppress aliens to prevent reaction fire from wrecking everyone.

A machingun cannot suppress everything. You can only keep it pointed at one point at a time and if the landing zone is sorounded, you are in a pickle.. A Machingunner can keep the dropship safe-ER, but that doesn't mean completely safe.

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8 hours ago, TrashMan said:

A machingun cannot suppress everything. You can only keep it pointed at one point at a time and if the landing zone is sorounded, you are in a pickle.. A Machingunner can keep the dropship safe-ER, but that doesn't mean completely safe.

TU trained gunners do a pretty solid job as of this last patch. Using two alongside smoke walls seems to do a great job of keeping everything manageable. I never noticed before, but it seems smoke blocks aiming now, so that also helps a ton. 

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23 hours ago, Coffee Potato said:

smoke blocks aiming

yeah if LZ is too hot, just spam smoke to get to cover.

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Posted (edited)

Problem I ran into with this is when I had a unit throw the smoke grenade to block one side of the ship from view an alien from the other side shot at him and killed someone, so still isn't a perfect defense. Really it's just a matter of needing better cover before exiting the ship.

 

Edit: actually went back and I think I was misremembering things. Still had trouble getting out of the Dropship even with the smoke though.

Edited by monopoly59

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