The Long Game

General discussion about the game.
shadowcrust
Posts: 328
Joined: Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:43 pm

The Long Game

Postby shadowcrust » Sun Jun 12, 2016 5:43 pm

I proudly present the new highest high score in FTL AE, and the first six digit high score to boot:

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The primary goal was to get the last Zoltan cruiser achievement, where you can't upgrade your reactor until sector 5, which worked out (when you save+resume a game, the NEW label vanishes):

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The secondary goal of this mission was to defeat the flagship without hull damage, as the Noether was still missing this check mark. Secondary goal was accomplished:

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I bought a Weapon Pre-igniter, Flak II and Heavy Laser, and found a nebula in sector 7 to exploit, albeit with a slightly different weapon setup as shown in the flagship battle, where I've swapped Pike Beam with Breach Bomb II:

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The grand strategy consisted in firing the pre-ignited Flak II, slicing with the Pike Beam and the Hull Beam and firing the Heavy Laser at the enemy weapons:

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In most cases, the second Flak II volley followed by the beams sealed the Elite Fighter's fate. I cloaked the first Burst Laser fire of the enemy and in most fights the Zoltan shield was unscratched. In almost 3,300 fights against the Elite Fighters, the Zoltan shield was completely depleted only 4 times, and enemy boarders teleported on my ship only three times. This only happened, when the Flak II failed to remove all enemy shield layers and the Heavy Laser missed as well. While I took no hull damage during the whole Elite Fighter trial, it is conceivable that with enough fights, you will miss everything five times in a row and either receive hull damage or have to jump away, so there's a (very high) upper limit to the high score.

After initial exploration of all nebula beacons, I mostly fought against only two fighters, jumping back and forth, here the second type:

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FTL is like a Tea Ceremony: all necessary steps are stereotypically repeated until there's a natural flow without thought, and you can let your mind wander... and fall asleep, which luckily only happened twice during this long game. I mostly played in short bursts of only a couple ships a day, so it took several weeks to finish this one run. I'm now a Zen Master of shooting down Elite Fighters with muscle memory.

A better (faster) setup would have consisted of an additional Automated Re-loader and two Flak Is instead of a Flak II and a Halberd Beam instead of the Pike and Hull Beam; the Heavy Laser is good in all cases, although with the Shrike an Advanced Flak would have been a slightly better option.

Although I've done a couple of boarding stints to gold level my boarders, almost all Elite Fighters were destroyed.

I have not used any mods or cheats or other game-enhancing features, I've played with vanilla FTL AE on hard mode. I haven't backed up the save game either. This was the second attempt to break the 100,000 points threshold, the first try was with the Vortex, but after defeating about 2,200 ships (translating to roughly 66,000 points) the game crashed and the save game and the profile were deleted. Here's the only screenshot I took while the game was still on (Sep 5 2015), the strategy there being hammering the enemy weapons, instead of slicing the hull with beams:

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I've a thing for FTL high scores.

My first putative world record was still in the original game on Sep 21 2013, with my first flight of the Carnelian, scoring 16,721 points in normal mode and using only boarding to eliminate Elite Fighters.

This record was defeated by nakedian on Nov 19 2013, using the Adjudicator on easy mode with a high score of 38,185 - but without defeating the flagship.

On Dec 31 2013, I had a run with the Red-Tail that scored 40,207 points, still on the original FTL in normal mode. In that run, I still mostly boarded enemy fighters, but also destroyed a good deal. I think the record of most combat kills of 2,482 is undefeated, and it is probably still the highest score on original FTL normal mode.

An unknown/unnamed hero achieved a new world record high score in FTL AE hard mode with 59,028 points using the Bravais on May 3 2014, and as far as I'm aware this record was undefeated up to this day.

A long game, and a long post. It would be awesome if this post would inspire others to try for higher high scores, until we explore the limits of the variable storing the score... :-)
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stylesrj
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Re: The Long Game

Postby stylesrj » Sun Jun 12, 2016 10:19 pm

Wow. That's a very impressive score. I don't think I could ever reach those sorts of numbers, even with mods or CE Infinite to reduce the monotony slightly.

Well done!
EpicTrojanVirus
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 3:32 pm

Re: The Long Game

Postby EpicTrojanVirus » Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:38 am

Wow, i didn’t know about that exploit till i read this post,
I’m still very young on this game, never got my highest score reach 10% of yours
My highest is kestrel A on hard with 9561
Fairly easy ship to use, i got three Burst laser II, small bomb and pre igniter by sector4
BLII with pre igniter seems inefficient though, but i bought it nevertheless hoping to find better synergies on the way
I over explore sectors until the rebel fleet catch up with me even when they invaded the exit beacon
After sector4, I jump to 2 or 3 rebel fleet before jumping out of the sector


Well Played shadowcrust!!
shadowcrust
Posts: 328
Joined: Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:43 pm

Re: The Long Game

Postby shadowcrust » Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:31 pm

Thanks! 9,561 isn't half bad! However, I think you've killed more than 9 Elite ships (sectors 5-7, 3 ships each) with that score. An exceptionally good run (say, 65 defeated ships, 120 visited beacons and 3,000 scrap earned on hard) may net you 8,250 points; a 'normal' very good run scores roughly 7,500 points (my own best score so far without willfully engaging the rebel fleet is below that). That likely leaves between 1,000 and 2,000 points from defeated Elite ships, so about 33-66 of them (each one giving you 30 points on hard mode). :-)
EpicTrojanVirus
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 3:32 pm

Re: The Long Game

Postby EpicTrojanVirus » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:41 am

Are you a human calculator or something?
Haha, I don’t even know how FTL score works but I’m pretty sure that my stats is a bit higher than that exceptionally good run.
Me myself will never label that a good run, It’s a lucky run for me considering my noob managing skills.
I’ll check my stats on the pc later when I got home, I’m at a boarding school every weekdays so no computer for me.
I’m just using a tab(android, so no FTL either), I’ll get a screen shot also.
I feel embarrassed and pityful comparing my score to you. :(
But still I feel more honored talking to a Pro like you sir.

Good Work again sir shadowcrust!
shadowcrust
Posts: 328
Joined: Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:43 pm

Re: The Long Game

Postby shadowcrust » Tue Jun 14, 2016 5:11 am

Ha - as a home assignment, you can figure out how the score is calculated just using the session stats :D

I'm also interested in your 9k run session stats, because if you really only defeated around 10 Elite ships, that would be the most amazingly fortunate run I've seen so far, by a wide margin.
Leylite
Posts: 83
Joined: Mon Mar 31, 2014 4:21 pm

Re: The Long Game

Postby Leylite » Tue Jun 14, 2016 9:45 pm

That is an amazing build, and an equally great feat, but cripes man, take a break and retire from highscoring! I think a six-digit highscore can and should stand eternally as a signifier of how frigging long it takes to grind out a highscore like that, and how little the difference is between a 95,000 point score and a 100,000 point score.

Surely you can move onto other challenges, like winstreaks or low-engine runs, or something more fun than just killing the same two ships over and over again from muscle memory.

Well done, but this is the kind of behavior I don't want to encourage further. :?
shadowcrust
Posts: 328
Joined: Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:43 pm

Re: The Long Game

Postby shadowcrust » Thu Jun 16, 2016 3:49 am

Leylite wrote:Surely you can move onto other challenges?


Are you kidding me?! That's like asking Ronaldo to become a downhill racer... and why should I forfeit the millions I receive every month for my professional FTLing?
Lily Adams
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Aug 03, 2016 2:08 am

Re: The Long Game

Postby Lily Adams » Wed Aug 03, 2016 2:17 am

Wow. That's a very impressive score. :o :o :o :o :o :o
Roma Lilly
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Aug 03, 2016 9:54 am

Re: The Long Game

Postby Roma Lilly » Wed Aug 03, 2016 10:11 am

What a impressive post ..:O

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