News Background Simulation - Update (01/03)

So, if you re-read my post, you'll note I said it needs to give a proportionate boost. Although again, I'm not convinced the influence effect is being counted, based on the fact the reputation effect *does not* occur. That second bit about the reputation effects is most definitely true, and I'm currently participating in a war where I've had multiple CZ resolutions, and I'm still allied with no negative impact to reputation against the enemy.
But this is strange, when was that? I've got frequently reputation hits from the opposing faction, directly after the CZ was won and also visible on the status page, down to unfriendly and not just a few percentages. That was about one week ago... So what's a fact for you I can't confirm. What might have been different to your experience? Just a wild guess: Are you doing these combat zones in a wing or solo? I've solo'd all of them.
 
If you are fighting a war and no player actions are being made against you.
Is there a bucket system still where you can only do so many actions in a Tick ?
Then also if there is, is that bucket < than, >than or =to the amount needed to fill the new war bar to its max in a single tick ?

@Jmanis I like the ideas and Questions.

I especially like your last comment, Fdev need to inform the player base what happens if you do an action compared to another.

As to "How would you then score the following" :-
Ill just answer as simply as I can (so no screaming at me :) )

- 1m in combat bonds = Bond amount / 100k and rounded. (though maybe never greater than a high cz) ?
- two transactions of 100k = 2 points ?
- low/med/high czs = 5,10,20 ? (if other actions are far superior to the czs in time and points then increase to 50,100,200 or something)
- missions = use inf +++ system but make sure the missions are balanced in terms of +++ ? (maybe even make the rewards Bonds)
- USS = make the war USS give Bonds ?

Yer I know weak.... but until we get told what does what its all guess work anyway :)
 
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But this is strange, when was that? I've got frequently reputation hits from the opposing faction, directly after the CZ was won and also visible on the status page, down to unfriendly and not just a few percentages. That was about one week ago... So what's a fact for you I can't confirm. What might have been different to your experience? Just a wild guess: Are you doing these combat zones in a wing or solo? I've solo'd all of them.
All mine are solo too. Are you taking massacre missions? They do cause reputation hits as expected.

I've never had reputation damage from winning a CZ and have too many examples of this.

And just to reiterate because people have "thrown toys out the pram" about this before.. I'm not saying you haven't had rep damage from completing a cz.... just that i haven't, and therefore there may still be erroneous bgs behaviours.

Fwiw... prople who claimed to have observed rep loss were also taking massacre missions.

I'm get the link to others with the same experiences later
 
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If they massively outclass the other mechanics then it just comes down to one way to do things again and people get bored, much better to have all the mechanics are on average equally effective allowing choices.
No. Yes. But, no.
If every mechanism is balanced against every other mechanism, and the attendant upfront costs and potential costs for failure and levels of attention and expertise required for each activity is taken into account such that all methods are potentially viable routes to achieving the same result, then: Yes. Sure. Fine. Good.

But in order to achieve this, CZ objectives need to massively outclass Combat Bonds in terms of the number of "points" they give for each success. Why? Because CZ objectives require more skill, take longer to do, are less predictable, and you can't just drop in and out over and over again to achieve them. If CZ don't substantially outclass raw Combat Bond farming, then the one true only correct action will always be to farm Combat Bonds and never stick around long enough to engage with the CZ tug-o-war or the objectives. It relegates CZs and their objectives to a "just for fun" bit of fluff rather than a central element of winning wars. And call me crazy but I think that wars should at least partially be won by winning battles.

However, making CZs orders of magnitude more valuable than Bonds alone would NOT negate the value of Combat Bond farming. Combat Bond Farming is an activity you could pursue if you do not have the skill or time to complete a CZ and its objectives, because doing 10 successful quick sorties for bonds would, for many, be preferable to risking the potential time investment of slugging it out in a CZ that you don't have a strong chance of winning.

The way it should work is that if you are intent on moving the needle as fast and efficiently as possible you will always attempt to do CZ objectives. However if you fail or have to retreat, you will nonetheless have acquired Combat Bonds as a kind of "consolation prize" during your attempt, thus ensuring that you are still going to make *some* progress whether you manage to complete the CZ or not. Meanwhile players who do not feel up to the task of completing CZs and their objectives will always have the option of making a slower and steadier but still meaningful contribution by running Combat Bond farming sorties.
 
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All mine are solo too. Are you taking massacre missions? They do cause reputation hits as expected.

I've never had reputation damage from winning a CZ and have too many examples of this.

And just to reiterate because people have "thrown toys out the pram" about this before.. I'm not saying you haven't had rep damage from completing a cz.... just that i haven't, and therefore there may still be erroneous bgs behaviours.

Fwiw... prople who claimed to have observed rep loss were also taking massacre missions.

I'm get the link to others with the same experiences later
That's very well possible, didn't know that. I didn't make notes unfortunately as I didn't care about my reputation in these wars. Sometimes I did massacre missions and sometimes not (only the small ones that are not always available).

But now I don't get the correlation between reputation and influence. If it's not too complicated, can you explain the problem? I was only focused on influence changing when we did that and honestly, it was the first time I actively took part in this sort of actions, so there's still a lot to learn there...
 
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The way it should work is that if you are intent on moving the needle as fast and efficiently as possible you will always attempt to do CZ objectives. However if you fail or have to retreat, you will nonetheless have acquired Combat Bonds as a kind of "consolation prize" during your attempt, thus ensuring that you are still going to make *some* progress whether you manage to complete the CZ or not. Meanwhile players who do not feel up to the task of completing CZs and their objectives will always have the option of making a slower and steadier but still meaningful contribution by running Combat Bond farming sorties.
But is retreating or losing not counting in favor of the opposition? If true, then combat bond farming without winning a battle would be a double edged sword, at least unless we know the exact weight (or points?) of each of these actions.
 
But is retreating or losing not counting in favor of the opposition? If true, then combat bond farming without winning a battle would be a double edged sword, at least unless we know the exact weight (or points?) of each of these actions.
Personally, I would remove combat bonds as a means to influence the war entriely. It should all be done through missions, scenarios and combat zone wins. Combat bonds should just be a payment for services rendered whether they win or lose.
 
But now I don't get the correlation between reputation and influence. If it's not too complicated, can you explain the problem? I was only focused on influence changing when we did that and honestly, it was the first time I actively took part in this sort of actions, so there's still a lot to learn there...
OK, so when you win a CZ, you get three notifications:
- Influence increase with your the supported faction
- Rep increase with your supported faction
- Rep decrease with the opposition faction

I can guarantee that the rep decrease with the opposition faction does not happen, and will gladly go in and record a video to prove it. I've got some screenshots from the last time someone queried it also.
I can't can guarantee the rep increase with the supported faction doesn't happen... though my gut is telling me right now it doesn't. just went and verified it doesn't.
The influence effect is not observable, as influence doesn't change in a war, though Will mentions that (before the recent update) conditions for winning a day in a conflict were "The redirected influence changes" or words to that effect.

So, with one (or possibly two effects verified not to be working, there's a very good chance the expected effect on winning that day on the war by clearing a CZ may not be happening as well. But it's impossible to tell, imo, without verification from FD.

Unfortunately FD is coming from a position of lost trust in the system... things worked for a while... and then they provably weren't. Now they claim it's fixed, but with how busy the BGS is getting these days, it's now harder than ever to validate those claims. But if we know that, say, clearing a low-cz was worth 5 x 100k bonds submissions, we could have a crack at validating that.

FWIW, I'm heavily invested in tracking if/when the rep loss starts functioning, because when it does, FD have basically introduced a new bug, unless it can be confirmed CZ war-winning effects are working and are more effective than bonds

Personally, I would remove combat bonds as a means to influence the war entriely. It should all be done through missions, scenarios and combat zone wins. Combat bonds should just be a payment for services rendered whether they win or lose.
Yup... more and more, removing bonds as having any effect on the outcome of the war makes more and more sense.

- Each faction clears a low CZ. This would normally be a draw, but because a commander took 500k from the kitty of one faction, that same faction wins. That makes zero sense.
- Double-dipping on Massacre missions and Combat Bonds having an effect is why no missions have had effect since, well, forever. Massacre missions make sense as a directed, strategic reduction of an enemy force, as opposed to just going "here's some rando scalps I got!"

etc.
 
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Thank you.

When you say, "The influence effect is not observable, as influence doesn't change in a war" it depends. Do you expect to see it immediately? When I started to help my power in this war it was one of the first questions I asked and was told it's been cleared on the next 'tick', something I can confirm for sure, though it never would give you a direct feedback about your own actions (unfortunately, something I personally don't like, as with most of these movements that come no sooner than with the next daily tick). You are literally fighting in the blue at first and then need patience. But I thought (think) this is the way it's meant to be and am confident that it does.

As to the influence/reputation correlation I had hoped to learn why this is relevant to you, as reputation as far as I'm aware has no influence on the outcome of these wars with the goal to gain control over the system you are fighting in.
 
Thank you.

When you say, "The influence effect is not observable, as influence doesn't change in a war" it depends. Do you expect to see it immediately? When I started to help my power in this war it was one of the first questions I asked and was told it's been cleared on the next 'tick', something I can confirm for sure, though it never would give you a direct feedback about your own actions (unfortunately, something I personally don't like, as with most of these movements that come no sooner than with the next daily tick). You are literally fighting in the blue at first and then need patience. But I thought (think) this is the way it's meant to be and am confident that it does.

As to the influence/reputation correlation I had hoped to learn why this is relevant to you, as reputation as far as I'm aware has no influence on the outcome of these wars with the goal to gain control over the system you are fighting in.
Not sure where the point of confusion is, but you seem to be correlating or asserting things that I haven't said or suggested.

Yes, influence and reputation are entirely different things, and yes, reputation has nothing to do with winning wars. I'll try and start from scratch.

When you resolve (win) a conflict zone, there are three effects which are displayed:
1. Reputation increase with the supported faction
2. Reputation decrease with the opposed faction
3. Influence increase with the supported faction.

I can prove effects 1 and 2 *do not* happen, i.e they are broken. The 3rd effect (the influence change) cannot be directly observed, and I'll come back to that statement in a sec. Either way, if two of the three effects of resolving a conflict zone are provably broken, then there's a good chance the 3rd probably is too. For example, if you ran a mission which offered Credits, Reputation and Influence, and when you hand the mission in, you didn't get any Credits or Reputation, it's highly probable[1] the influence effect wouldn't have happened either.

Now, when I say the 3rd effect (the influence change) can't be directly observed, I need to pre-load some things.
1. Bottom line, influence *does not* change during a war. The only influence change that occurs during a war is the +/-4% for the winner and loser at it's conclusion. Will's statement confirms this.
2. Influence effects pre-patch were redirected to a bucket... so essentially whoever would've had the larger net influence change under pre-3.3 mechanics would "win the day" and score a point in the "war progress" under the new mechanics. Now, the new mechanics don't use influence (at least, that's what Wills statement suggests).

Now, the update says that "it uses a completely separate calculation" or words to that effect.

Please note: The below numbers etc. are hypothetical, and just to illustrate possible observations.

In the old mechanics where Influence determined the winner, you could observe the effects.
- Hand in 100k combat bonds, at 5% start influence, gain 1% influence
- Hand in 2 x 100k combat bond transactions at 5% start influence, gain 2% influence
- Hand in 4 x 400k combat bond transactions at a 60% start influence, gain 2% influence

From here you can dissect that to determine the influence values of combat bonds and other actions easily enough, i.e the effects are observable. Moreover, if you then went:
- Hand in 1 x 100k combat bond at 5% start influence, gain 10% influence
... and you can't repeat that, instead getting the previously-mentioned 1% if you repeat, you know immediately that someone else must have been interfering in that system. The whole thing is opaque and observable.

Now, you can't, because:
- Complete 1 low CZ unopposed, gain 1 point on the war progress bar
- Complete 5 low CZs unopposed, gain 1 point on the war progress bar
- Complete 50 high CZs opposed by minor resistance, gain 1 point on the war progress bar

You cannot easily dissect those things and determine their comparative values. There are ways, but A) it's flipping difficult, and would take months of effort for even a large margin of error, and B) You simply can't tell if there's opposition, because the traffic reports are not representative.

Now, resolving a CZ is broken down into 2 (3 optional) sub-tasks:
1. Destroy Enemy Ships
2. Finish the CZ
3. (optional) hand in bonds

You can't separate the possibility that destroying ships is what influences the war outcome, rather than resolving the CZ itself. Bonds are a separate matter entirely, but at least you can control that yourself. Take the following test results:
1. You run a High CZ for one side, and a Medium CZ for the other side. You don't hand in any bonds. The side you ran the high CZ for wins that day.
2. You run a High CZ for one side, and a Medium CZ for the other side. You hand in bonds only for the Med CZ side. The Med CZ side wins that day.
3. You run a Medium CZ for both sides, and hand in 600k bonds for one side and 400k for the other. The side who got 400k bonds wins that day.
4. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side. High CZ side wins
5. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side. 4 missions side wins.

What can you determine from that? The answer is absolutely nothing, everything is transparent and unobservable. It's like a tennis match where you only get the results of the Games and Sets, e.g 6-4, 2-6, 7-6. You only know how many games were won, not whether the games were won 40-0 or went down to deuce every game.

But if I changed it to:
1. You run a High CZ for one side, and a medium CZ for the other side. You don't hand in any bonds. High CZ side got gained 4 points for that day, Medium CZ side got 2 points for that day.
2. You run a High CZ for one side, and a medium CZ for the other side. You hand in bonds for the medium CZ side. High CZ side got 4 points, medium CZ side gained 6 points.
3. You run a Medium CZ for both sides, and hand in 400k in bonds for one side and 600k bonds for the other. 600k bonds got 3 points, 400k bonds side got 8 points.
4. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side + bonds. High CZ side gets 5 points, 4 mission side gets 0 points
5. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side. High CZ side gets 5 points, 4 mission side gets 6 points

There's a massive amount of information in there. You can start to form theories like:
- A medium CZ gives 2 points, a high cz gets 4 points, which would be consistent with FD's historical number-crunching
- A low CZ probably gives 1 point, but you'd need to test. Likewise it looks like handing in a set of bonds may give 1 point.
- In 2. It's likely someone ran a medium CZ against you.
- In 3. it makes it look like Bonds are counted in transactions rather than value, even though someone interfered with another CZ.
- In 4. and 5. it's a smoking barrel that missions have no effect. It's likely someone external just ran two medium CZs plus bonds

This is what I mean by the effects of completing a CZ are unobservable; they're totally transparent to the player. Yes, I can go run a CZ, and after the tick my side will have a point, but why? Why did they get the point? Was it the CZ I ran? Was it the bonds I handed in? Was it the ships I killed? Was it none of the above, and some other player's action? Am I better to run two medium CZs, then hand in the bonds, or run a CZ and hand in the bonds between each? I can't tell. And that's where clarity is needed.

Genuinely, right now I'm involved in a close-fought war. I have about 15 Wartime Missions queued up (for surface scans, powerplant strikes etc.). In the time it takes me to do all those missions, I could do 3 High CZs, or 8 Medium CZs. When I started, I did a mix of missions and CZs and got up that day. I did the same thing the next two days and lost both days. I then did nothing but Medium CZs and bonds and won the next day. I'm clearly being opposed, so what won that day for me?
- Resolving the CZs? As mentioned the rep effects are broken, so it's possible this didn't win it for me
- The bonds I handed in?
- Do missions have any effect at all?

I'll never know because of the transparency.

[1] Without getting into lengthy discussion about common software design templates/execution flow, reverse engineering and probability mechanics.
 
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Sorry but that's a very confusing read. Not just because I'm no native reader but also cause you seem to use the word "transparency" in the opposite way than it possibly would make sense to me. "Opaqueness" would the word I would expect here instead and from the context.

Other than that and since I'm still a beginner in system manipulation, it probably would be easier to understand for me if some of the more experienced players would drop into this conversation where I could silently listen then and try to extract my conclusions.
 
Sorry but that's a very confusing read. Not just because I'm no native reader but also cause you seem to use the word "transparency" in the opposite way than it possibly would make sense to me. "Opaqueness" would the word I would expect here instead and from the context.

Other than that and since I'm still a beginner in system manipulation, it probably would be easier to understand for me if some of the more experienced players would drop into this conversation where I could silently listen then and try to extract my conclusions.
Yeah... if you're a non-native speaker I can see why it might be confusing. Your definition of Transparent and Opaque is one correct interpretation, but there's an equally valid interpretation of those terms that is the exact opposite of your definition.

Your definition might get used in the context of something like "Transparent Business Practices", where you can look in and see how a business is making money, see where they're paying money to etc... as opposed Opaque, a black box, where you have no idea of the internal workings, only money goes in, and money goes out.

However, using the other definition, something which is transparent is invisible/intangible, like a transparent pane of glass or an invisible force-field. Sound waves are transparent; (without tools) we can't see how they reach our ears... they just do. But if they were opaque to the naked eye (i.e visible, colourful), you'd have a much better understanding as you'd be able to actually see where they're going, how they're moving etc.. This is the definition I use, as the BGS is designed by FD to be transparent to the players... that is, we aren't meant to understand how the BGS works... we just run missions (i.e make noise), and see results (i.e hear it).

Hope that helps.

PS. I've been doing the BGS since day dot, so happy to keep trying to explain things if you want?
 
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Sorry but that's a very confusing read. Not just because I'm no native reader but also cause you seem to use the word "transparency" in the opposite way than it possibly would make sense to me. "Opaqueness" would the word I would expect here instead and from the context.

Other than that and since I'm still a beginner in system manipulation, it probably would be easier to understand for me if some of the more experienced players would drop into this conversation where I could silently listen then and try to extract my conclusions.
FWIW if it makes you feel any better I’m a native English speaker and I’ve never seen anyone use “transparent” and “opaque” in the way he has; it’s the exact opposite of every example I have ever seen. If he had used a term like “invisible” instead of “transparent” then it probably would have made more sense to me too.
 
FWIW if it makes you feel any better I’m a native English speaker and I’ve never seen anyone use “transparent” and “opaque” in the way he has; it’s the exact opposite of every example I have ever seen. If he had used a term like “invisible” instead of “transparent” then it probably would have made more sense to me too.
Getting off topic... but...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transparency_(human–computer_interaction)

This being somewhat bread-and-butter for my employment, it's terminology I use frequently. Although that page doesn't go into it, "Opacity" refers to observable effects.

Just hoping that clears up my post some more. Old BGS saw that "Combat actions" will win wars. Under the new BGS, will explicitly says that's still the case, but the plumbing has changed. In that regard, those systems are transparent to us, the "end user".

Perhaps it's use like that is less common than I realise.
 
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Getting off topic... but...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transparency_(human–computer_interaction)

This being somewhat bread-and-butter for my employment, it's terminology I use frequently. Although that page doesn't go into it, "Opacity" refers to observable effects.

Just hoping that clears up my post some more. Old BGS saw that "Combat actions" will win wars. Under the new BGS, will explicitly says that's still the case, but the plumbing has changed. In that regard, those systems are transparent to us, the "end user".

Perhaps it's use like that is less common than I realise.
I see. Problem is that in German the word transparent also exists, but here it would be a wide stretch to use it as equivalent to 'invisible' (in very rare circumstances I could imagine that it works but certainly not in the context we've used above). Anyhow, I'm currently on an exploration trip and can't check any of the theories so I would have to believe everything you would say - not all too fruitful for both of us I think.

I'd be happy to continue this conversation when I'm back to combat activities, maybe in a few days already. You brought some interesting points that I wasn't aware of. But I also feel pretty fresh in this business and think some more reading about the basics would go a long way. Please take this conversation as postponed but not ended. Thank you again for your patience with me.
 
Thanks for the update Will.

Now can we also have longer breaks in between Expansion state, please? After expanding into a new system for couple of days, my PMF is pending Expansion again.
The moment you go pending Expansion you need to work for any other MF in the System to make them gain % and thus take away from your own to get it below 75% again (Expansion threshold). If you don't then currently you'll be expanding without end, since with 3.0 the Expansion tax (aka slow % loss per day during live phase) has been removed (either by accident or otherwise).

Since the States of a (P)MF are System only nowadays it isn't as problematic as in the past though. You can simply opt not to care for the System you went to and leave it to its own devices.
 
You can't separate the possibility that destroying ships is what influences the war outcome, rather than resolving the CZ itself. Bonds are a separate matter entirely, but at least you can control that yourself. Take the following test results:
1. You run a High CZ for one side, and a Medium CZ for the other side. You don't hand in any bonds. The side you ran the high CZ for wins that day.
2. You run a High CZ for one side, and a Medium CZ for the other side. You hand in bonds only for the Med CZ side. The Med CZ side wins that day.
3. You run a Medium CZ for both sides, and hand in 600k bonds for one side and 400k for the other. The side who got 400k bonds wins that day.
4. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side. High CZ side wins
5. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side. 4 missions side wins.
Have you tested this since Friday's backend patch to see if this is still the case? I can't do much testing at the moment because I'm at the end of two wars but will be in another soon enough and can start testing some of this myself. But what you're essentially saying is that HCZ > MCZ > LCZ? And despite the intensity, if one side turns in bonds and the other doesn't, the bond side wins? I'm also getting that missions are still variable and could go either way even if the number of missions turned in were identical. However, in your example, you neglect mission rewards (say, INF+ vs INF+++). Do you not include that because the payouts don't matter (no INF bucket anymore)?

People in the BGS Discord have told me that intensity doesn't matter; it's there to keep things interesting and more challenging. Winning HCZ moves the marker in conflict status just the same as a LCZ or MCZ. That seems accurate from my own observations.


But if I changed it to:
1. You run a High CZ for one side, and a medium CZ for the other side. You don't hand in any bonds. High CZ side got gained 4 points for that day, Medium CZ side got 2 points for that day.
2. You run a High CZ for one side, and a medium CZ for the other side. You hand in bonds for the medium CZ side. High CZ side got 4 points, medium CZ side gained 6 points.
3. You run a Medium CZ for both sides, and hand in 400k in bonds for one side and 600k bonds for the other. 600k bonds got 3 points, 400k bonds side got 8 points.
4. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side + bonds. High CZ side gets 5 points, 4 mission side gets 0 points
5. I run 4 missions for one side, and a high CZ for the other side. High CZ side gets 5 points, 4 mission side gets 6 points
I'm curious to know how you're coming up with these points if a war effort is only really measured by the lateral movement of the conflict status marker. I'm not challenging your information, I'm just trying to learn more. It also looks as if there's a soft cap on bonds of 400k and after that it delves into the excessive and doesn't really help.

Also, I haven't personally observed any penalties for fleeing a CZ. If this is the case, then it would prove faster to jump in, gather around 400k bonds, jump out and turn them in, call it a day. This is, of course, assuming no player opposition and just a PMF vs NPC MF.
 
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Looks like there may be a cap now on influence contribution. If you do to much for yr faction it counts against you negatively. Absolutely bizarre.
 
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People in the BGS Discord have told me that intensity doesn't matter; it's there to keep things interesting and more challenging. Winning HCZ moves the marker in conflict status just the same as a LCZ or MCZ. That seems accurate from my own observations.
Same conclusion the BGS department of my Discord group came to. Also the actual difficulty of warzones from low > mid > high isn't something I could easily sign from my week of CZ combat, all done in Solo and besides 2 exceptions and another 2 bugging out, all won. My conclusion so far is watching what's going on in a zone and trying to shift the balance in your own (NPC) team's favor is crucial. It's basically a team play, even if you're doing them in Solo - if not even particularly important in Solo.

I don't consider myself an exceptional combat pilot and yet I can win most of the zones and all types in Solo, and this in a fully gimballed FDL. Blindly shooting enemy ships alone might work, but you'd need to be pretty good so that you can ignore any tactical considerations. Or in other words: Wouldn't work for me. Also, the general difficulty can grossly vary in any type of CZ and either seems pretty much random or is triggered by actual human opposition, but how could we ever possibly know for sure?

No verification from the devs of these mechanics is pretty mean IMO... [mad]
 
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