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Pop into the steam chat and I can help you out in real time. This is a terrible format for having a conversation and doing code pastes.
One thing you can try is changing the map you play on. The standard named random maps have far more low quality planets than the ones tagged with SOA, which also means far more easy targets for the AI. They'll lose fewer resources expanding and be in a better position. I got tired of the AI hitting a wall expansion wise, so I redesigned them with starting asteroids and an overall larger quantity of bad planets.
It's possible there is a flaw in your custom map that results in similar behavior, perhaps there are too many penalizing planets, like Volcanics and Toxics, which frequently have painful negative modifiers, or ones with extremely powerful militia that are clobbering their early expansion. A Tamarian next to a starting world would frequently wipe out entire AI fleets and potentially take them out of the fight entirely once their expansion were crippled too severely to build up.
The Sins AI is very dumb in a few respects. There are three very big problems that cause SOA2 in particular a lot of grief because of it's added complexity.
It has no concept of money, it can't save for expensive objects, and it spends pretty much every cent it gets as it gets it. Different cost capital ships results in a losing AI almost always selecting the cheapest. When an AI is doing well, it maintains it's fleet and actually builds up income, but when it's not, it continually throws away with meager forces it has, keeping itself broke.
It doesn't understand abilities either, it simply operates based on the auto-cast functions, and selects at random even though particular abilities might be critical and others situational.
It also has no concept of keeping ships alive. It wont retreat threatened ships, it only retreats with a fleet. This is a problem across the board, and the primary weakness in the vanilla AI. The more powerful those important ships are, the more crippling this problem is.
The Dominion suffer in particular because the different abilities on those very expensive ships are necessary to the function of the frigates. Instead, they blow them up all the time and end up building half a dozen Keldon's. We've given some boosts to various factions to help, but making them smarter is a lost cause without source access.
There are 5 factions in the mod, yes, but there's nothing missing. All three major powers, the Dominion, and the Borg are all there. If you're after separate Cardassians, they're a footnote in galactic history, nowhere near a match even for the Romulans, and this mod sticks as close to canon as possible, which makes their complete lack of a fleet to pick ships from a bit of a problem.
Yes, but I don't expect any more major changes will happen.
Voyager did have it's "periodic" issues...
I rather like Kate Mulgrew as far as actresses go, but she played one annoyingly indecisive captain. Half the time it was like the writers figured she was menstruating that week and needed to be extra bitchy or irrational.
The AI is stupid, vanilla Sins is three largely identical sides, it can't handle such radically different designs. We've tweaked it with modifiers to play better even though it's stupid, but it still throws away ships it shouldn't.
The actual ships are not problematic.
The combined boost to a Jem'Hadar frigate from the buffs on the capital ships is the following: 19% weapon cooldown, 130% energy weapon cooldown, 10% weapon range, 130% damage output, 13% mitigation.
Compare that to the Federation, who have a 30 hull point restore, 150% shield restore, and 30% weapon cooldown from the Galaxy class for a few ships with hull damage. If you stack every buff they can possibly get, they still come up vastly short of those numbers. A Virulent does over 600dps after research with those boosts, the Intrepid can't even hit 400dps with full boosts and max research.
Did you read the Dominion tutorial? Ships are weak, fleets are extremely powerful.
Get both, play both, decide which you like better. One of the benefits of them being free, don't need to choose ours or theirs.
To get neutrals with stations on a map, the planet has to be colonized. I expect this is your problem. It runs the same template whether it's colonized or not, but it does a separate set and wont spawn structures without the planet being owned.
If you're playing the normal random maps, there will be colonized terran planets at game start. These will be Klingons, Pirates, or one of the three big neutrals, Son'a, Tamarian, and Ferengi. The last three will have a large station that goes invincible and inactive after it takes large amounts of damage, and will change sides with whoever takes the planet.
Some of them aren't implemented, but the Sona/Ferengi/Tamarian ones give you access to ships when you take one of their command centers over.
0.7.5R was put up on Dec 21st.
We should have a release up for this weekend, probably later today.
It's still being worked on, there are 471 changed files since 0.7.3, the last edits were done yesterday.
If you're trying to run the dev exe with the mod in the normal folder, that makes sense.
Dev is for Dev.
The primary cause for a mini dump on startup is a missing file. A corrupted download can cause this depending on what program you used to unpack, most wont unpack corrupted archives to start with.
If you downloaded just the patch and tried to run it(we do get these occasionally), you'd get one.
A more rare consideration is file name size. If your entire directory path and file name is longer than 256 characters, the Sins engine can't read it. We had a player a few years back with some really long user name that ran into this issue and I drastically shortened some of the more lengthy file names. You should be in the 160 character range so unless you've changed your file structure or have a truly obscene user name, it shouldn't be an issue.
They do not. A possible future addition, but it's a lot of model work, something the team is severely short on.
Vanilla maps will work just fine, add any we're missing to the galaxy.manifest file to get them in.
Most of the vanilla maps are in game already, with some edits/renames. I'll get the ones we're missing added in for the next release.
If you're trying to add maps created by others with the main game in mind, we've already set up the GalaxyScenarioDef file to use any map that is compatible with vanilla Sins:Rebellion, complete with multi-faction militia. The only time a map wont work with SOA2 is if someone creates a map that only runs on DLC.
There's a screenshots section on Steam where a lot of people post screens. You can send the image to our email as well. soa2 at hotmail.ca
The GalaxyScenarioDef file is a very easy read. You can look to see what the lists are in there with no trouble. Stars and planets start at the top. There's an information text file included in the galaxy forge folder as well that you should read before doing custom templates, but that more pertains to the crazy stuff I've done.
Unless CBS goes nuts and shuts down Trek modding to start with, no one's likely to complain about play videos. They're advertising for us, we like em.
You do need 0.7.3 and 0.7.4. There are no known crashes in SOA2 at this time. If it dumped after being properly installed, it's probably the first run crash. The in game mod loader is broken, doesn't unload stuff right or something. If you enable the mod from in game, always exit and restart Sins before playing or it will inevitably crash.
I'm guessing you either have a corrupted download(this is easy to have happen if you don't use a good download manager) or you're using a really bad extraction tool.
7z is the #1 format, rock solid, used by industry and individuals alike.
The 7-Zip software is the fastest, and most powerful archiving tool you can get, if you're using something that doesn't like them, switch. It's superior performance wise in every way, and completely free.
If you need help figuring this out I'm available on our group chat to help you out in real time. There's a link to our steam group on the front page.
Assuming you're asking about the research that is actually under the Star Navy section, that's the extra building you start with at your home planet. It starts with a sabotage ability that greatly improves the defensive capability of your home planet, and the research unlocks a remote version for attacking. You cannot replace it.
There are starbases at some neutral colonized worlds that will allow you to build Ferengi and Tamarian cruisers and can be captured by attacking them till they go inactive and invulnerable, and taking the planet.
The last time I did damage calculations, the Akira came up at 135 dps, 211 with it's 4 bombers. Bombers do pretty good damage even if they aren't that numerous.
Strike craft are very tough for their hit points. While they can be targeted by the other ships, the damage is largely wasted. An excelsior does 500 damage with it's phasers every six seconds. If these hit strike craft they will only do 50 damage before armor because of 10% accuracy. The ships designed for fighter counter only have 20% accuracy, ships with heavier than anti-medium damage, which also comes with damage multipliers less than 1, only have 5% accuracy against fighters, and 10% against bombers.
Even if your fighters aren't accomplishing much, they're absorbing thousands of damage in missed shots.
Larger fleets of them isn't up for discussion, for the reason stated by myfist0. If you pop into the chat room we can talk shop regarding balance and function though.
Currently capturable neutrals are Son'a, Ferengi and Tamarian. Maquis and Talarian are being contemplated, but they're quite weak ships with no special use. The Orion Syndicate already have the pirate raid mechanic for making use of them instead of destroying them, so will not be added to the list.
Weapon upgrades are specific to weapon types. Son'a weapons are currently using Romulan types, on account of them being green and that they use disruptors for personal arms.