I have.. opinions. Not sure exactly what it is I need, but I'll try to put it down in writing.
I played Beta 1 for four hours yesterday and Beta 2 for four hours today. Here are a few things I have been thinking about:
1. Middle mouse button woes.
I can't seem to figure out what the middle mouse button does. I think it focuses the camera on the selected unit, but... I think what I WANT it to do is to focus the camera on the unit CURRENTLY under the mouse cursor. I realize this what CTRL-CLICK does already, but doesn't that also select the clicked target, which means I will no longer have my attack squad selected so I can kill the hostiles I wanted to focus camera on?
Please let the middle mouse button focus on the unit under my cursor. Maybe that doesn't work. I dunno. It's just what I intuitively expect when clicking it. Switching between selected units is NOT what I expected, nor do I really see what's so useful about it. For switching units, I would expect TAB to do that work.
2. Attack hostiles of a specific type, with my units of specific types.
What I WANT to do is this:
- Select my team's units that I want to use for the attack.
- Focus camera on the hostile units so they are immobile relative my camera, so they are easier to click on.
- Target ALL hostile units of a certain type, say fighters.
How I imagine I should be able to do this is
- Bandbox my own units, or SHIFT-ALT-LEFTclick the types of units I want to use.
- Middle-mouse-click or even middle-mouse-bandbox the hostile units.
- SHIFT-ALT-RIGHTclick the enemy unit types I want to destroy.
Typical situation: Several thousand pirates have just entered the system and the PILLAGER type are bombarding the planet. Your automatic defenses seem to ignore these guys for some reason, but I want to focus all firepower on them first, or the planet's dead within two minutes. What I WANT to do is quickly select the apropriate firepower and quickly target all hostile units of the correct type, so I can then zoom out and focus on combat elsewhere.
...or the AI could just worry more about planet-attack weapons. Still, that doesn't solve the ambiguity of the middle mouse button or the inability to attack hostile ships of a certain type. I tried Shift-clicking. Sure it works, but it still takes ten clicks where one alt-click should have been enough.
3. Too many pirates.
I thought the pirates came from unexplored areas, like Barbarians in Civilization. They don't seem to, and they also seem to be able to conjure ships out of thin vacuum (or the sun's corona?). Please let pirates obey SOME of the laws of thermodynamics - preferably preservation of matter and energy.
4. Suicidal support ships
Capital support ships race into close combat with enemy defense installations, dying in almost half the time of their more combat-centered bretheren. I'm thinking what the more "logical", or the more "expected" behavior should be, and I'm leaning towards support capitals staying close to other capital ships, or at least close to the center of the local battle group, so that their support functions actually have a meaning, but at the same time without bringing the support capitals into the center of the fray, putting them under heavy enemy anti-capital fire.
I can't remember the names of all the capitals yet, but it was the one that looks more like an ocean liner than a warship. Ran into the center of of flock of gauss cannon while its combat-oriented brothers were safely at far weapon distance. Most annoying was that I told the ocean-liner to back off, break off to back line, but when I zoomed out and zoomed back in, it was RIGHT back in the middle of the killzone again. ARGH! I appreciate that they mind their own business if I zone out, but could they at least respect the spirit of my orders for more than a single minute while I turn my back?
PS: The seemingly useless carrier cruiser isn't useless - it's the cheapest way of bringing a bigger fighter / bomber cap along with your fleet to the distant battle zone. What are you going to do? Bring more capitals instead?