FTL

gore wrote:

The problem with this specifically is that this is literally the only thing that works this way, and it actively penalizes you for using higher levels of cloak (which do have a benefit against all other enemies).

This is not completely true and I'll tell you why. Cloaking doesn't just give you a 60% dodge bonus, it also halts weapon charging for your enemy. While your cloak is up the enemy doesn't charge weapons AT ALL. If you combine that with Weapon Pre-Igniter and Stealth Weapons you can EASILY get 2 or 3 full weapon volleys off on the boss before he can fire a single shot with his guns. This is especially helpful on stage three because you must first take down the supershield before you can knock out components like the missile launcher.

I've been playing a lot of Fed Cruiser runs trying to unlock the Mantis ship. The Fed cruiser can't mount a cloak and this has led to me to rely on other strategies. Cloaking is NOT the only answer for the stage 2 and 3 superweapons. You can turtle up behind defence drones. You can shoot down HIS drones when they hover in front of your guns. You can disable all of his weapons, at which point the superweapons alone are survivable. Or you can just straight up kill the boss before he kills you!

When I have "extra" scrap, I like to overinvest in important systems. Actually though, I don't really consider cloaking to be an important system, not like doors or piloting.

Lately, I've been using small bombs and fire bombs to disable key systems on the flagship. I guess ion bombs work too, but they're only a temporary measure.

Tamren wrote:
gore wrote:

The problem with this specifically is that this is literally the only thing that works this way, and it actively penalizes you for using higher levels of cloak (which do have a benefit against all other enemies).

This is not completely true and I'll tell you why. Cloaking doesn't just give you a 60% dodge bonus, it also halts weapon charging for your enemy. While your cloak is up the enemy doesn't charge weapons AT ALL.

But that's the point people are making on the last page. The boss still charges his super weapon, even when you're cloaked. It's cheating by the boss, and changing the rules of the game for one encounter.

So it's 1:12 AM. I just beat the flagship.
On easy, but still. Now I know it can be done.

Woot, just unlocked the Zoltan and Rock ship in the same playthrough. Still going strong too in sector 6 with my Kestrel. Crap weapons, but that hasn't stopped my boarding party of doom from working their magic. Hopefully get some decent weapons soon otherwise it may be a little on the impossible side at the end.

Ha! Had some amazing luck an unlocked the crystal ship. Had 2 of the required events while still in sector 1. Sector 4 was the rock homeworld and my first jump landed me at the necessary event to enter crystal space. From there it was inevitable. I almost feel bad after reading how hard other people have had to work to get it, and here it just fell into my lap...

It's also only the 4th ship type I've unlocked so far...

Stele wrote:

But that's the point people are making on the last page. The boss still charges his super weapon, even when you're cloaked. It's cheating by the boss, and changing the rules of the game for one encounter.

You guys are overblowing the issue, especially with the comparison to Deus Ex. If the cloaking device could easily and consistently defeat the boss's superweapon, it wouldn't be much of a final boss right? Cloaking is just one tactic of many, and none of them work perfectly on the boss either.

The problem is that cloaking does work too well. And worse, it works too well with only one power, and less well with two or three power.

Duplicate

Well, it's the boss. It can change the rules. That's what bosses do.

Now, I'll admit that cloaking is probably the mechanism that's least well-thought-out in FTL. I don't like it, and I mostly don't use it. But with all the other things you have to learn for that fight, and all the other things to keep track of, it strikes me as just one more checkbox of many..."don't use more than 1 power in cloaking." With the extremely active power management required for that fight, not to mention the active cloak management, it doesn't seem like a major sin to me.

And note that you can either not cloak, or cloak at a higher level, if you wish. We've just discovered that using 1 energy point there happens to be a highly effective way of avoiding one attack of a great many. Using this strategy improves your chances. I don't see it as game-wrecking, or even game-damaging. The power demands in that fight are extreme, and not having to sink three points into cloak strikes me as a plus, not a minus.

Tamren wrote:

...someone using the Stealth Cruiser with power 3 cloaking and only shield bars! .

Is there a missing number there?

One of the youtube videos of FTL I watched had someone using the Stealth Cruiser with power 3 cloaking and only 4 shield bars! He made it to stage 3 basically untouched and curb stomped the boss. So 3 power cloaking is certainly viable. I can't imagine getting through the game with less than 8 shields! Clearly I need to step up my game. So far I still haven't tried out the Zoltan or Stealth Cruisers.

That's weird... I know I typed it in, it was 4. Corrected the post. He only had 2 bars of shields, between his level 3 cloak and maxed out engines he was getting hit so little that full shields were not necessary.

Wooooo just had my first bit of luck and stumbled across the rock ship quest. Luckily, I unlocked it with barely enough time to make it to the exit of the system before the rebel fleet caught up. I only had to fight one rebel ship. Still going strong with my Engi.

I've probably watched (streamed live on Twitch, mostly LethalFrag) as many playthroughs of FTL as I've attempted. Tonight I defeated the flagship for the first time, using the slug ship, no less. But after a careless, late-game mistake, I didn't expect to.

Entering sector 7, I was feeling quite confident. I had a full crew, including two fully-levelled rock men as my boarding crew, some good weapons, cloaking and a defense drone. Then during a battle with a mantis ship, I didn't realize how low their ship's hull was when I fired off a volley of lasers that destroyed it with my rock men on board. Up to that point, I had been playing very well with no mistakes. At that instant, I felt that I had just ruined any chance I had of achieving victory.

After a couple minutes of staring at the screen in disappointment, I carried on. Might as well see how far I can get, right?

For the few remaining battles before the flagship, I took the opportunity give my new boarding team (two humans) as much combat experience as possible. At the beginning of the first battle with the flagship, neither of them had reached the first level-up, so my confidence was still quite low. The first phase went better expected - no crew lost and no hull damage. During the second phase, I lost 3 more crew members (a human, a zoltan and an engi) thanks to those damn boarding drones and the breaches they caused. Problematic, to say the least, but I managed to beat that phase while only losing 1/3 of my hull strength.

With the final battle being easier than phase 2, although no cakewalk under the circumstances, I ended up defeating the flagship with only three remaining crew members (the two slugs that came with the ship and a human) and still having 20 bars (66%) of my hull intact. It if weren't for those well-timed cloaks, I would've been toast.

Time to celebrate!

Nicely done! I probably would have quit right there if I did that to my boarding party.

Yeah, I have a bad habit of sighing and starting over, in cases like that.

Oh wow, blasting your own rockmen right along with the ship, that totally sucks. Kudos to you for sticking with it, though, I probably would've rage quit!! In fact, I recall sending a boarding party once with the boss and losing the guys as the boss ship jumped away... No fair!

So, anyone else ever reached the flagship with a really pimped out Mantis ship -- that has no hull damage weapons.

Sigh.

After the second time I lost a boarding party to my Federation Cruiser's auto-fire artillery beam unexpectedly automatically firing (after the initial 50-second charge) and destroying the enemy ship, I now turn that thing *off* before sending any boarding parties!

Is there any way to tell when the boss is going to warp away? I /hate/ losing boarding parties.

Chumpy_McChump wrote:

Is there any way to tell when the boss is going to warp away? I /hate/ losing boarding parties.

He jumps away when you destroy all of his hull points. I am pretty sure he won't jump away otherwise, so just get your men off this ship before you take out that last hull point.

Also with the latest patch, there is a new UI element that tells you when enemy ships are charging up their jump drives or when they are about to jump.

For those that mentioned it early in the thread: Turning on the setting that shows the jump paths is extremely helpful. This should be default. Was this a later feature added and they didn't want to change the default experience?

Well the default experience now includes the enemy FTL charging indicator so I think it's safe to say that it's an improvement to the default experience to make up for times when the interface is a little opaque. It was usually obvious whether or not systems were linked. But it was those times when systems just mere pixels too far away from each other that were frustrating. Getting stuck in a dead end is one of the game's "instafails" and wasn't something you could foresee which made it unduly frustrating.

Tamren wrote:

Well the default experience now includes the enemy FTL charging indicator so I think it's safe to say that it's an improvement to the default experience to make up for times when the interface is a little opaque. It was usually obvious whether or not systems were linked. But it was those times when systems just mere pixels too far away from each other that were frustrating. Getting stuck in a dead end is one of the game's "instafails" and wasn't something you could foresee which made it unduly frustrating.

I feel like the game was designed specifically with the assumption that you might get stuck in a dead-end like that if you weren't careful. The option was added later and I assume leaving it off by default is a nod to the original design.

My issue with the original design is that it's basically just obfuscation, instead of an actual random chance to get stuck: you could always figure the connections out, but it meant busting out a ruler. And that's not fun...

There was at least two cases where I got into a system with only two "paths" from one side of the system to the other. Both of them looked identical in distance but one of them fell a couple pixels short and I picked the wrong one. Flip a coin, heads? You're DEAD, game over. How is that fair?

The game does include the risk of getting stuck in a corner, but it balances it with a reward. Many many times I have chosen to explore more systems even if it means fighting one or even two rebel fleets just to escape the system. I only do that when I know my ship is powerful enough to take them on, or has enough defences to just tank them until I can jump away. But the difference between this and the prior example is that I knew exactly what I was getting into.

LilCodger wrote:

So, anyone else ever reached the flagship with a really pimped out Mantis ship -- that has no hull damage weapons.

Sigh.

The hull takes a point of damage when a subsystem is destroyed. You can let the flagship system get repaired, and then re-destroy the system to do a point of damage. For the last point of damage, you can try and let it burn out with fire if you don't want to lose a boarder, or you can just suck up the loss knowing it's the final confrontation. Note that fires must be extinguished and hull breaches repaired before systems can be fixed.

Tamren wrote:

How is that fair?

Who says it has to be fair?

Tamren wrote:

Flip a coin, heads? You're DEAD, game over. How is that fair?

Why were you dead? Just fight your way through.

Tamren wrote:

Flip a coin, heads? You're DEAD, game over. How is that fair?

It is FTL... randomness screws you over all the time.