Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

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master_bungle
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:00 am

Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby master_bungle » Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:20 am

Hi All,

Not sure if this has been reported already but I couldn't find anything.

I seem to find that if a Zoltan crew member is placed in the weapons rooms, he can sometimes use up a power slot instead of contributing one. I notice this the most with the first zoltan ship you unlock.
It isn't a problem when equipping the halberd beam when you have 3 max weapon slots (zoltan adds one power, and reactor adds the other 2), however, if I then wish to deactivate the halberd beam and equip a weapons that takes 2 power and a weapon that uses 1, I am unable to do so.
It seems the power the zoltan crew member contributes gets locked into the halberd beam. I therefore end up with 1 power in weapons that isn't being used, and instead just limits my max weapons power to 2 available for weapons that aren't the halberd beam.

I hope the above makes sense... It could be that simply swapping some weapons about in the weapons bar frees up the power again, or moving the zoltan crew member out of the room and then powering up the weapons I need could resolve it, but I am sure it is a bug.

EDIT FOR CLARITY: In the above example, I found that unequipping my halberd beam so that no weapons were equipped left me with 1 used weapons slot (powered by zoltan crew member) and 2 free. I was therefore able to equip EITHER a weapons that needs 1 power (therefore leaving me with 1 of 3 weapons bars free) or a weapon that needs 2 power (using up all 3 of my weapon slots).
I was still however able to equip the halberd beam instead, taking all 3 power as well.
More Dakka
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2012 1:08 am

Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby More Dakka » Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:53 am

Are you reordering weapons? The Zoltan power bonus is always associated with the weapon in the first slot, even if you're not activating it -- so if you don't want to use the halberd beam and instead need the bonus power on another weapon, you need to rearrange things so that the halberd beam is no longer first.
master_bungle
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:00 am

Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby master_bungle » Wed Nov 07, 2012 11:06 am

More Dakka wrote:Are you reordering weapons? The Zoltan power bonus is always associated with the weapon in the first slot, even if you're not activating it -- so if you don't want to use the halberd beam and instead need the bonus power on another weapon, you need to rearrange things so that the halberd beam is no longer first.


Well that explains it! It did occur to me just now that perhaps reordering the weapons could sort that out. Didn't realise the power supplied by the zoltan stayed with the first first weapon (or at least didn't realise it was meant to work that way).

In which case, this thread can now be ignored (along with my stupidity hopefully) :D
Noobos
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:21 am

Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby Noobos » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:24 am

I would still consider it a bug - there's no reason for the Zoltans to power only the first weapon.
UltraMantis
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Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2012 3:17 pm

Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby UltraMantis » Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:57 am

I dont think it can work any other way. I guess it's coded that way intentionaly. It's most usefull if they only power the first weapon. When your weapon system take damage your weapons get powered down, and the first weapon is the one disabled last. It should be your most important and reliable weapon. The one you least want to have taken down.

By having the Zoltan give you free power, you further protect it from being disabled. It may take some reorganising of your weapons to get the most benefit, but that is a good trick, not a bug.

Oh and welcome Noobos.
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EdenNov
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Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby EdenNov » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:08 pm

UltraMantis wrote:It's most usefull if they only power the first weapon. When your weapon system take damage your weapons get powered down, and the first weapon is the one disabled last. It should be your most important and reliable weapon. The one you least want to have taken down.

And that's exactly the problem. If your weapons get pounded by missiles, and your fragile Zoltan's getting low on health, you'll want to send him(it?) to the medbay, and that would depower your most precious, longest charging weapon (unless of course you go through the menial process of depowering something before you send the Zoltan away).
UltraMantis
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Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby UltraMantis » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:24 pm

That is the weaknes of the Zoltan, not a bug. It's one of the reasons i dislike them as my crew, and if i have any i have them loiter around the engines or shields. The bonus they give is very big, and so must be the penalty when things go wrong.
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jcalton
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Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby jcalton » Tue Nov 27, 2012 12:57 am

More Dakka wrote:Are you reordering weapons? The Zoltan power bonus is always associated with the weapon in the first slot, even if you're not activating it -- so if you don't want to use the halberd beam and instead need the bonus power on another weapon, you need to rearrange things so that the halberd beam is no longer first.

The problmem is that it's kinda hard to re-arrange in the middle of combat. ;)


It's fine to say that something is a feature not a bug [although this has not been confirmed], but that doesn't mean that it's a good feature, or that it couldn't be made better (or made to make sense).

I don't mind if the Zoltan are powerful and need a major drawback, but how does this drawback make sense? The captain orders them to power the halberd beam and what...they say "No, sorry, we can only power halberd beams, not lasers?"

Except they can do just that out of combat? Why?
While in combat, they can dynamically reroute power from that halberd beam to shields to engines to medical to cloak to oxygen...but not from one gun to another?

IMO the Zoltan weakness is that you build up things other than your reactor, and when you lose a Zoltan (or move him, etc.) your ship can become useless in combat. You can repair systems, but you can't repair a dead Zoltan. That's a pretty major weakness. Upgrading your reactor is already the cheapest upgrade in terms of adding 2 or more levels. So you are relying on a major crutch for a relatively small savings in scrap. As soon as you lose that crutch, you fall down...maybe permanently.

If I lose any other crew member, that doesn't happen automatically. Necessary systems on the ship still function, they just function more slowly. But when you lose a Zoltan, you lose a system.

Seems pretty balanced to me, but maybe I'm wrong. Give them fewer HP, have them take 50% more damage from fire, or heal more slowly. Have them explode when they die, or do ion damage. But don't make some obscure rule that is confusing and essentially arbitrary. From a narrative and universe-building standpoint alone, it's better to have the weakness be due to a drawback of the race, not a drawback of the ship.
UltraMantis
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Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby UltraMantis » Tue Nov 27, 2012 1:09 am

I think the 'feature' looked better on paper :lol: It's pretty messy because of the way the players are left to figure it out for themselves and since FTL is very unforgiving, i'd say it should be explained whenever a Zoltan is introduced to a ships crew.

One of the reasons it's arbitrary is because a Zoltan cant give N power levels as a bonus, where N is the nuber of weapons you have. That's why only one weapon slot gets the bonus.

The big problem is knowing how it works. Using it is easy. You cant access the weapons you carry as cargo, but the weapons mounted on the ship can be sawpped. You can allways re-arrange the weapons as you see fit, even in combat. Pausing the game momentarily helps a bit. There are other reasons to swap weapons, such as power loss caused by damage, or not having enough power for all weapons.
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More Dakka
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Re: Bug: Zoltan Crew + Weapons

Postby More Dakka » Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:22 am

Yah, it took me a while to notice that you can click/drag weapons during combat instead of only rearranging from the ship menu...

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