Okay, so, I've been watching the forums, and corvettes appear to be a pretty big problem. Specifically:
- They're easy to deploy, difficult to stop (and consequently low-risk)
- They have only two counters, both of which are ineffective
- They outmode LRFs, LFs, and even capital ships (I'd be willing to bet that, close positions, a player who went corvettes instead of a capital ship would win over a player with a capital ship, hands down)
Consequently, I recommend the following: make them strike craft (i.e. you build a single corvette like you would a squadron of fighters or bombers) and balance them accordingly, to wit:
- 5/8s the combined health of a squadron or less
2/3s the combined DPS of a squadron, divided amongst the corvette's three weapons systems
- So: if a full squadron has 600 health, a corvette would have 375 total between its health and shields (remember: this may seem like a disadvantage, but corvettes benefit from shield mitigation, significantly increasing their effective health, and they don't lose DPS as they take damage the way squadrons do)
Balance their antimatter cost based on the costs of fighters and bombers
- So: if a full squadron did 18 DPS, a corvette would do 12 DPS, divided amongst three weapons systems
If necessary, fiddle with which units can target corvettes and which units the corvette can target with which attacks
- Consider giving them an antimatter cost when built by capital ships
- I should note that giving capital ships an antimatter cost for building fighters and bombers, and rebalancing these costs to favor fighters, would have an interesting effect on overall game balance, but that's another thread
Ideally, corvettes would use the following three damage types:
- Anti-medium (missiles/beams/???)
- Anti-heavy (lasers/lasers/???)
- Composite (autocannon/point defense/???)
...as opposed to fighters, which are anti-light, and bombers, which are anti-very heavy.
Consequently, you'd use fighters against light armor; corvettes against medium and heavy armor; and bombers against very heavy armor.
I know this suggestion is not favored by the community, in that it would perhaps signal a return to the strike craft arms race (which could be solved, incidentally, by buffing fighters).
I ask you, though, which is better? Spamming corvettes until you can spam bombers (or spamming fighters to counter both)? Or being forced to choose between spamming corvettes and spamming bombers?