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Report article RSS Feed Gameplay Week 2, Part 3/5: Turrets

Dawn of Victory isn't a planet-hopping mod. Planets that can be owned are relatively rare, and a planetary assault is a big deal. So it makes sense that defenders should have a home field advantage - both passively with mines but also with active defenses like turrets.

Posted by SwissKnight on Dec 9th, 2009


Note: These latter four journals are unique in that they're structured to discuss how both base Sins and other mods have implemented these features. This is because they are substantially more "tweak"-ish than our first update, and at first glance it would be relatively easy to confuse their implementation with duplication. Multiple rationales can lead to the same change in gameplay, and so I'll try my best to explain why certain features behave the way they do, instead of just discussing the end result.

Planetary Defenses II: Turrets

Dawn of Victory isn't a planet-hopping mod. Planets that can be owned are relatively rare, and a planetary assault is a big deal. So it makes sense that defenders should have a home field advantage - both passively with mines but also with active defenses like turrets.

What we started with

Base Sins' approach to defenses is that they are a delaying tactic to weaken enemy combat ships and provide basic defense against things like planet-bombing frigates. As such, the Gauss turrets and their analogues were well-armored but took a long time to reload and did mediocre damage. They were difficult to destroy, but only served one real purpose (which admittedly made a hell of a lot of sense in Sins' scheme of things).

What they did

Other mods have realized this way of doing things is a little constricting and that some planet defenses could be effective in a damage-dealing role. After all, they don't move, so you don't have much of an excuse to not avoid them. This is a start, but without effective mechanics in place to force more tactical defending and/or tweaks to Sins planet-bombing mechanics, players will simply place them at the edges of gravity well as bonus damage-dealers or in the same spots near a planet to cover them from attack.

What we did

This focus on an interdicting role for planetary defenses is a big deal in Dawn of Victory. As you saw with mines, walling a player into chokepoints is a great strategy. But eventually they'll make some sort of headway against your mines - especially later in the game, when strike craft are plentiful and cruisers can outrange them. Thus, it's necessary to reinforce your chokepoints with long-ranged turrets. While not as complex to disable as mines, turrets serve both the roles of damage-dealer and scary "i don't want to go there" structure. Mines are your passive defense, turrets your active defense. Mines are your sandbags, turrets are your ZIS-2s.

And like any artillery piece, turrets can be replaced by traditional mobile units. You could just as easily back your minefield up with a bunch of flak frigates and a few destroyers, or on the German side some speedy corvettes. But turrets are a quicker and cheaper investment and can be placed much more easily. They're also much more versatile: fielding a destroyer against a German cruiser is going to result in catastrophe, but a turret can do just as much damage to that cruiser as it can to a corvette or frigate because of its diverse damage types. More on this damage dealing aspect in a later journal this week.

Finally, each faction has a different sort of turret, diversifying defenses. The Soviet Union uses a all-purpose quick reloading, moderately armored Weapons Array with heavy flak and light torpedoes, while the German Reich uses a long-reloading and slightly less armored Railgun Platform with a long-ranged medium railgun.

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Post comment Comments
RaGod Dec 9 2009, 10:31am says:

Quite impressive though i wonder, will the turrets just go all out and chunk every weapon they have at an available target or will they differentiate between targets as such:

Corvet: use torpedoes
Destroyer: use railguns

Also, this has reinforced my need to play this mod :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
hydrocarbon000 Dec 10 2009, 12:00am replied:

Turrets have the same targeting routines as normal units, and they are set not to attempt to focus fire. They therefore will automatically attack one unit with their highest DPS weapon taking into account the target's armor type and the damage type, as well as firing their other weapons at whatever targets come into the relevant arc. Once the target is destroyed, I believe its next target will again be the one that takes the most damage from that weapon, but if a weapon like the torpedoes is still on its cooldown, obviously the ship that'll be best suited to getting blown up by the torpedoes won't be chosen.

+1 vote     reply to comment
WarCrime342 Dec 9 2009, 12:14pm says:

I can see that this mod will change the face of Sins gaming. I can't wait to see what you guys have done.

+1 vote     reply to comment
killertpu Nov 2 2010, 8:22pm says:

is it possible you could mix and match mines with turrents to make a deadly defensive combination?

+1 vote     reply to comment
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