Discovery Freelancer 4.90.1 Patch 3
Of Battlecruisers, Armors, Nomads & More.
Be prepared to blow the dust off of your Liberty Battlecruiser as the last changes to the always-controversial shipclass have been implemented with the latest ''Third'' update to the Discovery Freelancer 4.90.1 mod.
The battlecruiser shipclass has always been in a very odd position, where the ship was a in-between point from heavy cruisers to light battleships and suffered due to the fact that they lacked a weapon type of its own. Having access to cruiser weapons for defense purposes and battleship weapons for long-range shooting did not work well due to the BC class being slower in comparison to cruisers, while not wielding more armor. This made them highly vulnerable to heavy ships that got within range, while allowing smaller ships to easily kite them.
With this last update the changes to the Battlecruiser shipclass have been finalized and the ships, in general, have received the following overall adjustments:
- Battlecruiser nanobots removed, hitpoints merged into primary hull similar that of battleships.
- Battlecruiser-unique shields added.
- Battlecruiser-unique weapons and missiles added.
- Battlecruiser engagement range changed
The biggest gameplay changes the following modifications have resulted in is that the shipclass has obtained its own unique engagement range, damage output and characteristics.
The old version of the BC class struggled against faster, more nimble cruisers while having the same effective range of fire and similar amounts of damage output. Now the battlecruiser guns have projectile lifespans that reflect both the size and agility of the ship, effectively turning the whole class to focus on anti-cruiser roles - an almost polar opposite from what they were before. The new BC-specific missiles added by the patch are also a powerful armament against ships of most sizes.
The choice to merge nanobots into the primary hull has allowed the ship to ''feel'' less flimsy, resulting in players needing to worry less about keeping their finger on the G key whenever an enemy ship focuses them. The change has also resulted in the BC class being more appealing to work with by players who fly repair ships, due to the repair gun mechanics, where each hit on a friendly target results in 2% of its maximum health healed, effectively making BCs much easier to keep alive during large engagements while the new BC-specific shield allows for much more damage to be absorbed before the hull is exposed to enemy fire.
Video: A Liberty Navy Battlecruiser coming under fire from a hostile battleship, the new shield allowing it to get outside of effective range before taking hull damage.
However, one of the most surprising changes have occurred to one of the longest standing items in the game - the Armor Upgrade. The item is a permanent component that is mounted in a ship's ''Internal Equipment'' slot and serves to multiply the base armor of a ship by a certain degree. The item has always been mandatory for any PVP-focused ship as the ''standard'' version, the formally known Armor Upgrade Mk VIII, applied a multiplier of 2.5, effectively doubling a ship's health.
As the name implies, there were 7 other variations of the armor upgrade, each providing a much lesser bonus and, subsequently costing less money to purchase. The Mk VIII had a price of roughly 15 000 000$ ingame credits and often enough made up half of the price of a fully decked out ship.
All of this changes with the latest patch for Discovery as the armor upgrade variants I-VIII have now been defunct and have been replaced by a single item with the stats of the original Mk VIII variant, now simply called ''Armor Upgrade''. The biggest change, however, is the price. It has been reduced to 5 000 000$ credits, effectively reducing the cost of most fully upgraded fighter-class ships by a third. The developers have specified that all obsolete armors remain on player ships, but their sellpoints on bases have been removed and replaced with the new, cheaper variant.
"We hope that this will not only decrease the barrier of entry for new players when it comes to snub-PVP, but also popularize the overall use of the item for non-combat orientated ships such as transports." -Developer Note
Video: The nomad ''Artillery'' ship - the Ish'Tar (NPC Variant) opening fire on a Bretonian Cruiser.
In other news, the nomad playerbase have received an upgrade in the form of the nomad artillery ship - the "Ish'Tar'' now becoming a playable (albeit balanced) version of the PVE variant of the ship often used in events. The ship is currently open only to members belonging to official nomad factions such as the K'Hara and Nomad Vagrants and the ship itself is still going through a balancing phase, but the notion itself only means that the Omicrons have gotten a lot more dangerous.
Other changes to the nomad shipline include the MkII gunboat being rebalanced as the nomad superheavy fighter, the model being too small to be given a gunboat classification as intended earlier. The devs have noted that it currently lacks the SHF-specific shield, but it will be an item added by future patches soon enough.
The Discovery dev-team are currently striving to release a content patch for every quarter of the year and as we are entering Q2 of 2018, promise for new goodies has never been higher. Old players are still being informed that if they wish to see what things have changed over the years, they can do so by applying for the Veteran Package.
The full list of balance changes can be found on our forums: Discoverygc.com