THE PROBLEMS WITH THE UEF - Part 9 (The Atlantis)
I've had this post idling somewhere on my PC for quite a while now.
I brought it back out as the last few hot topics have been about or in regard to navy or navy balance.
Hence, here we are.
(THE TYPICAL DISCLAIMER!!!)
These are just some problems I wanted to bring attention to. I am offering my own solutions to these problems, however, I am not a balance team member, nor do I have a large data pool to back up my suggestions; Hence, the balances will likely need some adjustment. There may also be some better ideas to fix these issues, out there - so I encourage you guys to suggest your own ideas as well.
Problem: The Atlantis, detailed version:
The Atlantis - A multi-role unit???
The Atlantis is a unit that unfortunately suffers from an interesting model (pardon the innuendo), and being a carrier and sub.
Looking back through the forum ports, I'm continuing off of some (very) old posts, all of which shared a similar topic:
The Atlantis still needs a change for the better.
To start off, let's look at where and why it 'suffers'.
As a T4 experimental, you'd expect this unit to have exceptional capabilities, right?
Let's see what 12,000 mass gets you! These are its stats:
4 AA launchers, each with 140 DPS. That gives us a total of 560 DPS.
This translates to 1 & 1/2 T3 SAMs. (SAMs having about 350 DPS)
The Atlantis fires 4 torpedoes, each dealing 200 damage, every 2 seconds for a total of 400 DPS.
That translates to slightly more than one HARMS. (HARMS DPS: 375)
For comparison, a T2 cruiser has an AA damage output of about 500 DPS.
A T3 Aircraft Carrier has an AA damage output of 640 DPS.
Not to mention they have about 10x the HP of a Cruiser at 20K-24K HP.
The Atlantis has 40,000 Base HP.
So, not only does one carrier have half the HP of an Atlantis, but it has better AA capabilities as well.
All for a quarter of the mass!
And the Atlantis's torpedo damage can be barely compared to that of a HARMS structure.
Defensive Capabilities & Utilities:
Carriers tend to have some form of defensive capability and sometimes some offensive utility.
However, the Atlantis lacks all with the exception of its large vision.
No Tactical Missile Defense - commonly found in all other Carriers.
No Torpedo Defense - as one could expect from a Navy Experimental.
No Tactical Missile Launchers - as one could expect from seeing the Seraphim T3 Carrier.
A few destroyers can happily ignore it due to their torpedo defense and overwhelm it with their torpedo offense.
(Fun fact, it takes 6 Coopers to completely counter an Atlantis!)
So, it suffers as a carrier, as it doesn't have nearly the AA capability it should.
It doesn't have any utility that could help the surrounding allied navy.
It continues to suffer as a carrier as it cannot build on the move, and it needs to surface to deploy its squadrons - leaving it exposed.
It suffers as a submarine as navy can basically ignore it 80% of the time.
Torpedo bombers can pick it off when it's submerged; navy, when it's surfaced.
It lacks any torpedo defense and due to its agility and size, allows battleships (and other units) to groundfire it with ease.
It doesn't have any meaningful ability or utility that could assist in its survivability as a T4 unit.
"What about the production of aircraft? That's gotta be a benefit, right?"
Well, it suffers from the same problem all other mobile factories do.
It can arguably, also, be seen as a disadvantage if a player uses an Atlantis to build 'sky-boats' instead of using it offensively alongside Navy.
From my experience, almost no one builds this unit.
And if someone does, they're not using it to construct aircraft out of it.
Size & Agility:
The biggest solution, which I am happy to see is getting a look at already, is in its size.
It's far too large - which causes pathfinding issues if not already ignoring the ground firing from enemy units.
An increase in turn rate, speed, and some other small stats like acceleration and top speed, could also go well with this change.
TMD and TML:
An increase in its capabilities as a carrier - solidifying itself as an upgrade to that of the T2 UEF Cruiser.
Could then be similar to the Aeon Missile Ship, as well giving it more versatility.
Following the Utility section, an increase in its AA damage or torpedo damage - again, identifying the unit more so as a carrier or submarine.
This may come as controversial, but stealth.
As a T4 Sub, keeping all current stats the same, stealth would be the way to go.
This would help reduce the accuracy of incoming ground fire allowing it to more easily counterattack or raid.
A possible replacement here could be Jamming, but with its size... it wouldn't do much to help against ground firing if you can guess where it is based on the clumps of fake icons.
That being said... we can also completely look at it in a different manner.
Instead of focusing on what it could have, we could focus on what it has and expand on that a little more.
The Atlantis has quite the range. We could further expand on that - increasing its kiting tactics as all UEF experiments have. (High range with low health.) We can see this with the Fatty, Novax, and Mavor - all being able to hit the targets from relative safety.
A reduction its HP, so it would be far less tanky, (it is a sub, after all), and a proportional increase in its AA and torpedo ranges. Placing the unit as a more long-range sub.
Problem: (The Atlantis, TL: DR)
The Atlantis suffers from being a multi-role unit.
It lacks strength both above and when submerged in water.
Decrease Model Size, Increase Agility, & Increase AA and/or Torpedo damage:
- Slightly reduces incoming ground fire accuracy and slightly increases micro potential.
- Helps the unit be a little more specialized as a Carrier and/or Submarine.
- Increases survivability.
(This can already be done in-game, albeit with a multi-faction team and some preparation.)
Can possibly be replaced with Jamming?
TMD and TML
- Enforces itself as an upgrade to the Governor - similar to the Seraphim Cruiser and Carrier.
Increase Weaponry Range & Decrease HP:
- Shifts the unit's focus to be more of a long-range unit. Kiting becoming its main strength.
Something that I thought was cool was this proposition brought forth by @Jip a few months ago.
It was to give 'experimental features' to the Atlantis.
This included allowing it to fire its AA when submerged.
Though the idea was ultimately rejected, I can see it being revived if it comes with some more balancing and tweaking.
Perhaps the AA fires at half its maximum range? Or its AA is halved when submerged?
This could help the Atlantis better fit a support role as both a Sub AND Carrier.
Something no other carrier will have - a unique ability.
Welp, that's my take on the Atlantis and where it could be.
Sharing just a bunch of small suggestions and ideas.
What're your guys' take?
Is the Atlantis already a good unit where it's at?
Or should it be adjusted differently or more than what I suggested?