Dev Diary #10: Coruscant Has Fallen!
Plus, the Killer AI that's coming for YOU.
🎉 Welcome to the 10th Dev Diary! A big thank you to all who have subscribed - it’s what makes the Age of Legends and the Essential Guide possible.
In the last couple of weeks we’ve had a breakdown of the expanded Mon Calamari fleet line-up, and a hotfix fixing issues identified by the community. This time I want to write about the most important change of all coming-up in v1.34: a brand new, deadly, AI.
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After Action Report: The Fall of Coruscant
One of the lingering problems with the mod has been an inconsistent AI that sometimes fails to attack and often fails to build, particularly in late game. Well, thanks to some re-coding and extensive testing in the past two weeks, that’s no longer a problem.
Rather than just tell you how great it is, I want to show you. I tested the AI in the ‘27 ABY: Fall of the Core’ Galactic Conquest scenario and within 45 cycles the enemy had battered down the gateways to the Core in a series of lightning assaults, and taken Corellia, Balmorra, Fondor and Kuat; which they began to use as a staging post for a truly massive invasion fleet.
Unable to defend the remainder of New Republic space, I withdrew all remaining fleet groups and squadrons to Coruscant’s orbit, while the shipyards there tried to crank out as many reinforcements as possible before the inevitable strike of the Vong amphistaff.
Then they came: a Yuuzhan Vong fleet of more than 300+ Command Points (CPs) attacked the last extant New Republic fleet of just 130+ CPs.
The Coruscant Home Fleet, (the New Republic First Fleet), newly enlarged with the battered survivors of other forces, was anchored around the Executor-class Super Star Destroyer Lusankya.
In the early stage of the battle, Admiral Kre’fey in Ralroost rushed to provide screening and fire support for the New Republic flagship, while a force of Republic-class Star Destroyers and old MC80 Independence warships moved across the western flank of the battle to try and counter-attack. The entire space above Coruscant was full of action, both strategic as Lusankya directed the fleet in engaging Vong Kor’chokk-class Grand Cruisers, and tactical: as individual ships found themselves in pell-mell melees.
Crucial to the effort was Errant Venture, illegally fitted by the Hutts with a superlaser. This slow-firing weapon helped take down several Vong capital ships.
The sacrifice of a venerable hero ship of the Alliance, this MC80 Independence below, allowed a strike force of K-, A- and B-wings to annihilate a third Kor’chokk.
Meanwhile civilian ships and refugees desperately tried to flee the carnage, seeking what protection they could from the New Republic’s reserve fighters: the Millennium Falcon leading a force of T-wings and other outclassed designs, being the only spare units to defend the civilians.
Despite superior tactical performance by the New Republic fleet, and heavy Vong losses, the battle was becoming unwinnable. The sheer mass of Vong reinforcements was saturating Coruscant’s defences.
Having inflicted more than 100 CPs worth of damage for about 30 CPs worth of losses, I decided to move the fleet behind Lusankya which diverted its remaining power to shields to screen the surviving fleet while the hyperspace jump calculations were completed.
This action preserved the New Republic First Fleet, in exchange for the loss of Coruscant and any hope of maintaining a presence in the Core. This campaign was coming to a close, but in a larger galactic map the New Republic could flee to the Outer Rim and continue a guerrilla campaign, using the strategy guide I published last year.
This was a great campaign, and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about it. The Vong onslaught felt just like the books: a relentless grind as, star by star, the New Republic is forced to withdraw. I’m very excited to release this new AI into the wild in v1.34. It will make every campaign feel fresh, and challenging.
Deep Core Warzone
For the next major test I sat back and watched as an observer in the popular ‘4-8 ABY: Rogue Squadron’ scenario. I left the simulation running for days, and saw something amazing…