Star Nomad 2: Faction Conquest, What Happens during a Siege?
During a random play test I happened to stumble into an Imperial system which was under pirate attack, the fighting was intense, with the defending Imperial quad wiped out by some pirate reinforcements. The victorious pirates camped that system wrecking havoc on merchants and disrupting trade.
Not wanting to be a pirate victim, I decided to scoot and jump into a nearby system, which happens to be Cerulan, an ex-Imperial system which the Omni Collective previously captured. The Empire gathered its resources & fleet to launch a full scale offensive to try and re-take it. Obviously the Omni HQ called in reinforcements to prevent this, and so an epic battle took place.
Both the Collective & Empire decided (AI voodoo magic!) this was an extra important battle and committed ALL their fleets into this engagement. The scale quickly escalated… I ran and hid in a corner to avoid all the crossfire..
Out of the blue, a random scouting fleet of the Starborn Federation decides to jump in to investigate all the ruckus and got caught inbetween, promptly going out in some big explosions.
Due to the Omni holding a major system advantage, their fleet was bigger and so they eventually wore down the Imperials, taking out all their Colossus Capitals.
The siege is over, the bulk of the Omni Fleet heads to the Jump Point to return to their systems (A big Starborn fleet was heading for Omni space elsewhere!).
But no! The silly pirates in the adjacent system (which they were pillaging) decided to get greedy and jump in to plunder some hapless merchants…
Those pirates sure didn’t expect such a massive Omni Fleet here, they decided to make a run for it (AI ships can flee if odds are very bad for them, or if severely damaged), but the firepower overwhelmed the pirates before their jump engines could charge up!
System secured for the Omni.. even the little drones fly home.. aww, how cute!
So, that’s what you can expect if you wander into systems under siege from the big factions. Normally the battles are smaller, unless the AI deems the system is important enough AND they have a good chance of winning, they usually do not commit such a large force. Doing so leaves their other systems with weaker defenses, making it vulnerable for the other faction to conquer.
In a 3-way-battle, the AI does its best to survive & win. This means attacking a weaker foe, but also preventing foes from growing too powerful. It’s been tough to design & balance this aspect, but it’s done, very functional & very effective.