Suggestion for ECM fix

(dewk) #1

Where the massive response to the dev-blog-october-balance-pass going into near 3k posts, it’s a concern of all the suggested possible solutions for the ECM, none were looked at by CCP, or suggested by the CSM to CCP development team, especially @CCP_Falcon you started the topic.

Many issues with the ECM is around small frigates jamming much larger ships. Suggested have talked about including a cool-down timer between jam cycles, similar to cloaking modules (though timer times are subjective atm), others have focused on the solo side of ECM, there are heaps of comments, ideas and suggestions in the dev-blog-october-balance-pass topic.

I’d like to ask others to post their suggestions here. And hopefully we can avoid the massive amount of fighting that has happened in the dev-blog-october-balance-pass topic and the newer october-2018-release-general-feedback.

My personal view is change how ECM works, change it so it’s a basic strength vs strength (ECM attacker vs Target), instead of a chance based system, something similar to the EWAR system.

We know the following;

Hornet EC-300 +1.0 ECM jammer strength to all types to 7.5km
Vespa EC-600 +1.5 ECM jammer strength to all types to 11.25km
Wasp EC-900 +2.0 ECM jammer strength to all types to 15km
Ship ECM I modules +3.0 ECM jammer strength to primary sensor type and +1.0 to all others to 24.0km Opt
Ship ECM II modules +3.6 ECM jammer strength to primary sensor type and +1.2 to all others to 28.8km Opt
Ship Multispectral ECM I +2.0 ECM jammer strength to all types to 16km
Ship Multispectral ECM II +2.4 ECM jammer strength to all types to 19.2km
Signal Distortion Amp I +5% to strength and range
Signal Distortion Amp II +10% to strength and range

We also know the following of standard ships;

Battleships @21 sensor strength in one type
Battlecruisers @17 sensor strength in one type
Cruisers @15 sensor strength in one type
Destroyers @10 sensor strength in one type
Frigates @10 sensor strength in one type
Corvettes @6 sensor strength in one type
Industrial @9 sensor strength in one type
Mining Barges @10 sensor strength in one type

Under the old ECM system you always had a chance to jam a target no matter your ECM strength, call it blind luck.

This system is so bad that an 1 ECM str against a boosted battleship with 28 sensor str will have an 3.5% chance of success.

I suggest it should be based on the actually ECM strength and the actually sensor strength, and the ranges should be reduced for optimal to not higher than 10km, but the Effectiveness Falloff range maintained. Like the turret system the farther you are away the less strength the ECM will be.

The other thing is as it’s strength vs strength, ECCM and sensor booster modules would be worth having as if you have a higher sensor strength against ECM attacks, meaning some may go with pure ECCM fits for the sole propose of hunting jammers, and in fleet actions these sort of ship fits would be as important as logi ships.

The idea of adding small/medium/large/XL ECM modules could be do-able too, where the increase increases the ECM strength and range of the module (similar to how the current drones are done. If this was done, I have wondered about making the fitting cost like the EWAR modules, where it’s possible to mount much large modules to a smaller ship, but doing so requires a lot of skill, powergrid and CPU upgrades and the sacrifice of mounting other modules so you can do so.
This could lead to pure ECM attack ships, which would have to rely on support from drones it carries(if any) or fleet m8’s.

An idea @Malcom_Duke suggested is a cool concept;

I think take this a step further and increase the cycle times, so a low success means the ECM module is unable to rejam till cycle is completed, even if the jam is only a few seconds long.

Also as part of the above, I would even suggest that small ECM modules are limited to one target as it is, but with the larger modules increase to number of targets, medium to two (with reduced range and strength), large to three (with same penalties as medium) and XL to four (with same penalties as medium and large).
So if you target multiple targets with ECM your modules strength/range is reduced by the number of targets. Now this would require a means to allow a module to take more than one target, but its somethjng that could be added to make ECM interesting.

So as an example sizes:

Small ECM I +2.0 ECM jammer strength and optimal range of 7.5km
Medium ECM I +3.0 ECM jammer strength and optimal range of 10km
Large ECM I +4.0 ECM jammer strength and optimal range of 15km
XL ECM I +5.0 ECM jammer strength and optimal range of 20km

Now with multiple targets;

Medium ECM I on two targets has +1.5 ECM jammer strength against both targets and optimal range of 5.0km
Large ECM I on three targets has +1.33 ECM jammer strength on all targets and optimal range of 5.0km
Large ECM I on two targets has +2.0 ECM jammer strength on both targets and optimal range of 7.5km
XL ECM I on four targets +1.25 ECM jammer strength on all targets and optimal range of 5.0km
XL ECM I on three targets +1.66 ECM jammer strength on all targets and optimal range of 6.67km
XL ECM I on two targets+2.5 ECM jammer strength on both targets and optimal range of 10km

*note this is only on the primary ECM type in the example.

I could see players try to use the above in fleet actions, and would suggest the ECM strength of multiple modules should be stack-able, as they are trying to overload the targets sensors.

Now I also suggest that remote sensor boosters, completely negate ECM on a target ship, now this is providing the remote sensor booster ship isn’t also jammed. The reason for this is the Remote booster ship if not jammed is using it’s unaffected sensors to provide jammed ship with new sensor data from another unaffected source. Like wise an jammed Remote sensor booster fitted ship wouldn’t be an unaffected source of information.

I do like the idea suggested elsewhere that the ECM modules have a cool-down timer between cycles, as this could give the target time to get lock on ECM jammer and maybe get a shot or two off before being jammed again, or warp out if fast enough. This would mean the ECM player would have to think carefully about his/her plan of attack, “full ECM strength from all modules” or “hold something back just in case?”. I can see it adding an extra element to game-play.

As for ECM Burst modules, I would go the same way, but increase the strength of the ECM, but decrease the ECM burst Radius based on size of the module. And also add an Falloff range to add the effect of the blast. Yes it’d make it hit other ships nearby, but at a much lower strength, but if it hits an weak sensor strength ship on your side or the targets side, it could make things very interesting. Also make for a good counter ECM option by reseting ecm drones and ecm ship targets.

Anyhow the above is a few thoughts on possible ECM concepts, looking forward to see what others can come up with, or even suggest to upgrade what I have thought might be a solution.

October 2018 Release - General Feedback
ECM change idea
Dev Blog: October Balance Pass!
Dev Blog: October Balance Pass!
Dev Blog: October Balance Pass!
(Iowa Banshee) #2

I hate to mention this but the whole “lets do ECM” was based on the victims of a jam not having “agency” and feeling helpless.

Whilst this is an elegant solution for how ECM works and may make it harder for jams between different classes of ship - the end result is a jammed ship with the owner feeling helpless and not having “agency” to do anything to stop it

Sorry - its a great system but It does not address the concerns mentioned in the CSM notes

Edit: To be fair the delay before a new jam kicks in would help with the “feeling helpless” thing - but that could be added to the system as is

(dewk) #3

well I wonder, as I noted in the OP there could be an added cool-down time on ECM modules, along with a reduced cycle-time, and the increased fitting requirements would mean they would have to focus on ECM or not be as effective. And the cool-down time could give the target a chance to do something about the jammer, providing the jammer isn’t holding back a ECM module or two for that reason.
The removal of the % chance means by default an ECM player against a same sizes ship would have to have very good skills and modules if solo’ing.

also as noted most ships have a good sensor strength, and anyone that gets jammed has been targeted be a spec’d out ECM fitted ship, or has flown into an known PVP area without the right skills trained, ship or counter modules installed.

as it is what I suggest is only one possible solution, of many to come.

as for the target, all they need is an sensor booster(and if a ECCM script is loaded before the next ECM cycle the target is sure to have a much higher sensor strength) and/or signal amplifier to increase their sensor strength, or someone with an remote sensor booster, or as others have see combat drones.

as for the drones, I feel they should see an ECM jam as an constant target on it’s parent ship, so even if launched after jam has started they will engage the ECM ship if no other closer threats are nearby.

but what would you suggest as a possible way to the target feeling helpless?

(Scooter6976) #4

rollback October patch. sometimes ppl are going to ‘feel’ helpless. as you’ve already mentioned, there are ample ‘counters’ to ecm, it does nothing beyond halting a person’s targeted modules. all other modules remain unaffected. speed, tank, aoe, prop, passive modules, all entirely unaffected. the only thing ecm does is prevent a person from affecting another person. the feeling is balanced. all the previous nerfs have left ecm in actually a fairly stable state. not overly powered, not overly used, but exceptional when used wisely. sometimes you can do everything right as a jammer, and if you encounter a pilot whose fit is a strong counter, the jams fail more than they don’t. its working perfectly tbh. well, it WAS.

(Salt Foambreaker) #5

That and the devs not knowing their own game, the “no counter” blog was just plain uninformed.

Especially if they make a decision not to fit ECCM.

(dewk) #6

Thats the thing, you could make the ECM attack cycle appear to drones as a multi-staged attack so they see it as an attack if launched after jam attack start.

Or have higher sensor skill lvls.

I know many don’t mount modules to increase sensor strength as they’d prefer other modules.

Removing the % chance system currentky use for ECM would make a huge difference. I feel a strength vs strength base system would be better, as it mean large ECM ships would be required for jamming larger ships, and remove the low % chances of frigates jamming capital ships.

(Salt Foambreaker) #7

And that is a choice, do I take the risk of ECM or do I fit a counter. The dev blog was written as if the counter doesn’t exist.

(dewk) #8

Saw in another topic another idea similar to my strength vs strength.

The concept is the following;

ECM strength - Sensor strength = length of successful ECM cycle time

So any positive time mean you succeed, and any negative means failed attempt.
It’s an interesting idea. It’s not a bad idea, add in a cooldown cycle it could be a keeper.

(dewk) #9

Add to op @Malcom_Duke idea.

Only wish more would add their ideas, and @CCP_Falcon and other Ccp staff would have a look at what ideas have been posted. Never know. :slight_smile:

(Vailen Sere) #10

They tried the rediculous close ranged falloff on the faction frigate. With this it will blow ip amazingly fast. Of all ewar, ecm ships have ~50% the tank of its counterparts from other factions, and drones can and will auto attack the weaker ecm. The blackbird and scorpion being most common used, lack any dps to really stop anything in “weight class” and the scorpion currently strugles, sacrificing low slot tanking in order to acheive a decent jam againt fellow battleships. In the pass, if you go through with this, please adjust hull bonuses to accommodate the lack of sda@s these ships wont have to save them from getting insta popped.

(dewk) #11

sounds a like the Precusor ships, weak shields, low powergrid and cpu, to the point the shields are almost a complete two ship classes lower.

the whole ECM systems needs a rework, and yip the ECM ships need a boost. but to do so I think the system needs to be reworked, to stop a 1str ECM module or drone from having the chance of jamming a 20str+ sensor ship. even if it’s only 3.5% that’s still to much.

but as to what the best system to use, who knows there’s heaps of suggestions, many are really great while others are complete dogs.

but until the ECM/ECCM system is cleaned up, buffing the ships as I see it is only a knee-jerk reaction. better to roll-back for now and then once CCP get the whole EVE-show over with, hopefully they’ll look at what has been suggested and redesign the ECM/ECCM system into something more than what has been.

(elitatwo) #12

I agree. With this October patch all forms of ECM should have a success rate of 100% at all times to warrant the change in the first place.

I propose changing all ECM modules and drones get a sensor strength of 1000 points, all ECM ships get 95% shield resistance and a 100% shield hp bonus per level.

  • The Rook shall get a 300% missile damage,
  • The Falcon a 400% turret damage,
  • The Kitsune and Griffin a 300% rocket and light missile damage bonus and
  • The Blackbird a 600% all weapon damage bonus

With these changes I may consider calling ECM going in the right direction.

(Salt Foambreaker) #13

From EVE U, possibly just revert the target change and use the skills and equipment already in the game.

Countering ECM

Now you should understand exactly what ECM is and how it works within Eve. How is it countered? In order to make it harder for ECM modules to jam you you simply need to increase your sensor strength. You can do this in a variety of ways:

  • Get a bigger ship. Bigger, more powerful ships have naturally larger sensor strength: e.g a Merlin (frigate) has a sensor strength of 11 while a Raven (battleship) has a sensor strength of 22.
  • Sensor Booster modules (mid slot) - These can be loaded with ECCM scripts to increase the strength against jamming. As active modules, they can also be overheated - and will normally overheat for quite some time.
  • Signal Amplifiers (low slot) - These modules are similar to Sensor Booster modules but use low slots and give smaller bonuses.
  • Remote Sensor Boosters - These allow you to remotely project ECCM script support on to your friend’s ship.
  • Gravimetric / Magnetometric / Radar / Ladar Sensor Compensation skills - Increase sensor strength by 4% per level of their respective sensor types.

Often, however, the most effective way to counter ECM is to destroy the ECM ship(s) or hurt them enough that they’re forced to warp out. The Griffin, Blackbird, Kitsune and Falcon tend to be only barely tanked if they’re tanked at all, while the Rook and the Scorpion can mount tanks, but usually still have unimpressive defenses for ships of their respective sizes. ECM pilots tend consequently to be fairly jittery, so even if you can’t actually kill them, if you can demonstrate the ability to hurt them they often run away.

A long-ranged, high-alpha weapons such as a artillery can deal an intimidating amount of damage in one volley, which is good for this. In battles which are being fought at long range anyway, damage-dealers fitted with long-range missiles are often tasked with this kind of ‘anti-support’ fire because by the time their missiles travel to the primary target it would be dead anyway, and volleys of heavy or cruise missiles can also persuade ECM ships to run away.

Drones can also be an effective option. ECM ships often have trouble defending themselves against drones: drones keep fighting even if their parent ship is jammed and, although a single drone is easily jammed, the coordination and time required to lock onto and jam a full flight – assuming the ECM pilot even has five jammers – are considerable. Griffins and Kitsunes mount small weapons which can hurt drones, but usually can’t tank the drones for long enough; a Blackbird fitted with Rapid Light Missile Launchers and a large plate or shield extender might be able to destroy drones, but the pilot would still be distracted.

(dewk) #14

I agree, but question the suggested boosts, the highest benefit to a ship for damage is +50% for role or +10% per lvl.

Only time any benefit has been above that has been for range, or a resistance to specific effects.

(elitatwo) #15

Well I exaggerated a tad with the damage bonus but the Falcon and the Blackbird are hardly known for being the highest damage dealers.

For the level of risk a Falcon, Griffin, Kitsune, Blackbird and Rook pilots now have to take whenever they undock the damage they do is hardly enough.

I also stand by my proposal to make ECM modules work at all times in all cases, yes even sooper doopers and titans will get jammed.

And interceptors were killing all the ratting bots in Delve all day long and had to be nerfed, so here we are.

(dewk) #16

I agree that ecm should work 100%, but their success is based on them over powering the targets sensors. Str vs str.

Ecm strength - sensor strength = success and lenght if ecm effect.
Negative total means complete failure to jam. Ecm cycle continues as per normal.

(Salt Foambreaker) #17

It works closer to that than you may think. People don’t even train the skill, much less fit a module.

If you don’t train the skills or fit a module then yes ECM feels like a 100% chance. Just training the skill helps.

Also the thing is subject to range and falloff.

Anyone who gets 100% locked down failed to undock correctly.

(Iowa Banshee) #18

Most suggestions for limiting ECM seem to be observable only from the attackers point of view, to give the defender “agency” something to stop the jam is needed and I don’t mean something stoopid like not making the ECM work against the target.

At the most basic level, The victim of a jam needs to feel like they can do something about the jam - So give them a button to press when they are jammed that prompts the message “you are attempting to break the jam” and be sure to make it flash - if its flashing they will know they are not helpless because they are doing something.
If you want to really troll them add the reverse of the jam equation to the un-jam and watch them complain that the unjam doesn’t unjam as much as it should do

(dewk) #19

They just need to mount the right module or carry drones and auto-targeting missiles.

Jams can be stopped ether by destroying the jamming ship or by reseting its target lock (which causes jam to stop too).

But it all goes back to are players willing to mount already available modules, carry auto-targeting missiles. Drones are always carried if they can be, but indie ship only carry a couple for rats.

(Iowa Banshee) #20

This nerf really hurts indy ships without a drone bay