Artillery train nest clearing strategy

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Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by zOldBulldog »

Due to the artillery shell weird stack sizes there are some clear configurations:

- To defend an already cleared area: Set a train with one or more artillery wagons on a patrol route, to stop at the artillery positions until "x" seconds of inactivity. It is simply not worth it to use static artillery turrets and deliver ammo to them.

- To clear a new area after having done a lot of space science research to increase the range and plenty of expansion on your artillery shell production: Build rail and setup a forward artillery position (with the necessary laser and other defenses), add the stop to the artillery patrol train, rinse and repeat.

But in the "earlier" game your range and artillery shell production is still limited... so I *think* the most efficient way is to use a couple of 1 locomotive-1 artillery wagon trains running between "ammo load stop until full" and "forward outpost stop until empty" and speed things up with manual targeting so that each hit nails multiple nests.

Or... is there a better way?

EDIT: There seems to be some confusion. The scenario I am describing in this thread is neither of the ones I described in the two bullets. It is about "when you leave your factory" to clear a new area of nests.

SOLUTION:
- As Escadin explained quite clearly below, if you have multiple artillery wagons and you manually target then "only one shell" goes to each target. Therefore, longer trains are desirable.
- For convenience I am going to use two 1-4-1 artillery trains during the early game, to match the standard size of my loading stations, and 400 shells should be more than enough to clear anything I see from one location.
- Later on, once I get sufficient range on automatic firing mode (through space science) and shell production I will switch to longer trains.

Thanks for the ideas, suggestions and clarifications.
Last edited by zOldBulldog on Sat Oct 20, 2018 3:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by DaveMcW »

The best way to supply artillery turrets is to manufacture the shells locally.

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by zOldBulldog »

DaveMcW wrote: ↑
Fri Oct 19, 2018 5:58 pm
The best way to supply artillery turrets is to manufacture the shells locally.
Yeah, but that is not really useful to clear a new path. :(

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by Escadin »

zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Fri Oct 19, 2018 3:02 pm
- To defend an already cleared area: Set a train with one or more artillery wagons on a patrol route, to stop at the artillery positions until "x" seconds of inactivity. It is simply not worth it to use static artillery turrets and deliver ammo to them.
And why is that?
You need a logistic system for repair kit / drone resupply anyway, perhaps even ammo and fuel if you're not into nothing-but-laser-turrets strategy. The underlying rail network is already set up for the mines you are defending in the first place. So what's the big 'cost' of dishing out a limited amount of shells over the same, already existing and paid-for channels?

For capturing new land a train is definitely a better choice though.
Simply because shells have max stack size 1 in player / car inventory but 200ish inside an artillery wagon. You couldn't carry enough shells without them.

However, why limited yourself to a single engine + single artillery wagon?
Once you've went through all the trouble of laying out new rails in the middle of nowhere you might as well make it count:
- 5 to 10 artillery wagons for the proper barrage.
- engines on both ends so you don't have to place turn arounds in what could potentially deep mountain territory.

Having a blueprint of the target station comes in handy.
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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by zOldBulldog »

Escadin wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 11:59 am
zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Fri Oct 19, 2018 3:02 pm
- To defend an already cleared area: Set a train with one or more artillery wagons on a patrol route, to stop at the artillery positions until "x" seconds of inactivity. It is simply not worth it to use static artillery turrets and deliver ammo to them.
And why is that?
You need a logistic system for repair kit / drone resupply anyway, perhaps even ammo and fuel if you're not into nothing-but-laser-turrets strategy. The underlying rail network is already set up for the mines you are defending in the first place. So what's the big 'cost' of dishing out a limited amount of shells over the same, already existing and paid-for channels?

For capturing new land a train is definitely a better choice though.
Simply because shells have max stack size 1 in player / car inventory but 200ish inside an artillery wagon. You couldn't carry enough shells without them.

However, why limited yourself to a single engine + single artillery wagon?
Once you've went through all the trouble of laying out new rails in the middle of nowhere you might as well make it count:
- 5 to 10 artillery wagons for the proper barrage.
- engines on both ends so you don't have to place turn arounds in what could potentially deep mountain territory.

Having a blueprint of the target station comes in handy.
Some answers:

- Why is that? (1) Artillery gun only holds a little over 10 shells. (2) A regular wagon delivering shells only carries 40 shells. (3) An artillery wagon carries 100 shells. So... if you are building a station and a train to deliver shells from your factory... you might as well use a train with artillery wagons (carry more ammo) and make it stop at the station. Plus you save on the unload mechanism.

- Why only one artillery wagon?
--- (1) Early on you have limited ammo production, so you want to conserve ammo. (2) Using manual aim makes one shell take out 2 or 3 nests, clearing the area fast and saving on ammo. (3) Without space science the artillery range is pretty short, so you really need the manual targeting anyway. (4) When you manually target there is no point in more than 1 gun, as (correct me if I am wrong - I have not yet tested it) otherwise you'd be dropping multiple shells on the same spot... pointless.
--- So, that is why I am using one artillery wagon *early on*. Initially I do two 1-1 trains. While one is firing, the other one is going to the factory, reloading and returning.
--- I totally plan on upgrading to a 1-4-1 (same direction) train once I upgrade the range with space science and production capacity at the factory. At that point I can just deliver the train and let it do its thing.

- Blueprint?
--- Yep, already doing it
--- This little design I can setup in an instant with my bots, and remove it just as fast once I am ready to expand the rail. Works like a charm.
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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by eradicator »

Escadin wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 11:59 am
However, why limited yourself to a single engine + single artillery wagon?
Once you've went through all the trouble of laying out new rails in the middle of nowhere you might as well make it count:
- 5 to 10 artillery wagons for the proper barrage.
- engines on both ends so you don't have to place turn arounds in what could potentially deep mountain territory.

Having a blueprint of the target station comes in handy.
Youtube agrees.
zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:03 pm
(4) When you manually target there is no point in more than 1 gun, as (correct me if I am wrong - I have not yet tested it) otherwise you'd be dropping multiple shells on the same spot... pointless.
Maybe you should test your assumptions befor trying to base arguments on them. Because otherwise your argument is... "pointless" ;). See this video starting at 2 minutes.
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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by zOldBulldog »

eradicator wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:54 pm
Maybe you should test your assumptions befor trying to base arguments on them. Because otherwise your argument is... "pointless" ;). See this video starting at 2 minutes.
Dude, you truly love starting pointless argument and conflict, in just about every thread you get into. You might want to reconsider. The whole point of the forums is to help each other, not to harass each other.

Back to the point:

- I did clearly state that I had not yet tested the part about firing *one shell ONLY* when you have multiple guns.

- The video you pointed me to shows nothing besides firing an incredible amount of shells to expose targets. The whole point of the thread is for when you are still limited by ammo production. Later on once you have the shell production capacity and range - as I already said more than once - it of course makes sense to use multiple artillery wagons.

So, can we please try to stick to the topic of discussion?

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by Escadin »

zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:03 pm
- Why is that? (1) Artillery gun only holds a little over 10 shells. (2) A regular wagon delivering shells only carries 40 shells. (3) An artillery wagon carries 100 shells. So... if you are building a station and a train to deliver shells from your factory... you might as well use a train with artillery wagons (carry more ammo) and make it stop at the station. Plus you save on the unload mechanism.
You're overestimating their ammo consumption. Artillery on auto-fire - especially before ranged upgrades - rarely fires. My train usually only carries 5 shells so the artillery wagon would be overkill. The huge storage is imporant when you leave your factory, not when you patrol it.

Point is also to have a better coverage.
Plopping down an artillery turret right next to the already existent resupply station is easier, only takes an additional inserter and ensures I can manually fire at any time without having to wait for some train to arrive or even worse manually interfere with their schedule. Nests within auto fire range get deleted instantly, not when a train happens to come by.
You might hook the artillery wagon to the ammo resupply train. However, in my case that wouldn't make any sense because I set my trains up to run on actual ammo demands rather a static schedule. As a result there are stations it rarely ever visits and when it visits a station, then it happens after combat by design.

In the end there is the trade-off between having a turret at every station or a number of train between 1 and [station count].
The fewer trains you use, the smaller an area you cover at a time and the longer it takes to react to new nests and manual targeting calls.
The more trains you use, the closer you get to 'might as well have used turrets' dilemma - except the trains require more infrastructure, planning and attention.
zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:03 pm
When you manually target there is no point in more than 1 gun, as (correct me if I am wrong - I have not yet tested it) otherwise you'd be dropping multiple shells on the same spot... pointless.
No. Multiple guns work in parallel. When you have 10 guns and call 30 targets they will deal with 10 at a time rather than just one.
Last edited by Escadin on Sat Oct 20, 2018 3:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by zOldBulldog »

Escadin wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 3:35 pm
zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:03 pm
- Why is that? (1) Artillery gun only holds a little over 10 shells. (2) A regular wagon delivering shells only carries 40 shells. (3) An artillery wagon carries 100 shells. So... if you are building a station and a train to deliver shells from your factory... you might as well use a train with artillery wagons (carry more ammo) and make it stop at the station. Plus you save on the unload mechanism.
You're overestimating their ammo consumption. Artillery on auto-fire - especially before ranged upgrades - rarely fires. My train usually only carries 5 shells so the artillery wagon would be overkill. The huge storage is imporant when you leave your factory, not when you patrol it.

Point is also to have a better coverage.
Your train can only be in one place at a time, needs a seperate station wherever it goes so it doesn't interrupt regular traffic. Plopping down an artillery turret right next to the already existent resupply station is easier, only takes an additional inserter and ensures I can manually fire at any time without having to wait for some train to arrive or even worse manually interfere with their schedule.

You might hook the artillery wagon to the ammo resupply train. However, in my case that wouldn't make any sense because I set my trains up to run on actual ammo demands rather a static schedule. As a result there are stations it rarely ever visits and when it visits a station, then it happens after combat by design.


zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:03 pm
When you manually target there is no point in more than 1 gun, as (correct me if I am wrong - I have not yet tested it) otherwise you'd be dropping multiple shells on the same spot... pointless.
No. Multiple guns work in parallel. When you have 10 guns and call 30 targets they will deal with 10 at a time rather than just one.
Thank you for the clarification on the parallel firing (only one shell per target), with that info I'm going to switch to my standard 1-4-1SD (same direction) early game train configuration.

As to useful when "leaving your factory", that is exactly what this thread is about. When you leave your factory to extend the rail and factory area. I'll update the original post to make that clearer.

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

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zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:03 pm
- The video you pointed me to shows nothing besides firing an incredible amount of shells to expose targets.
Eh. The video shows that exactly one shell is being shot at each target marker, despite there being ample shells available. I.e. it answeres your question about how target markers behave (as does the wiki). But instead of trying to understand my answer you wasted your own time getting angry at me. I mean come on, there's quotation marks and a smiley, how obvious do i have to get?
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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

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zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Fri Oct 19, 2018 3:02 pm
- To defend an already cleared area: Set a train with one or more artillery wagons on a patrol route, to stop at the artillery positions until "x" seconds of inactivity. It is simply not worth it to use static artillery turrets and deliver ammo to them.
Been using a patrol route for months now. I send out the artillery train to 10 different remote sites and have it sit for a minute at each. At this point is ends up using about 20 shells before returning home to keep them pushed back. My train is 1 engine with 4 wagons.

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by JimBarracus »

to defend captured areas:
static turrets with activated train station for resupply
new nests are usually small groups which can be taken out immediatly; no growth possible
benefit: you save on train station names because you don't need dedicated names for every station.
ammo demand is relativly low, especially when your wall is so far out, that you keep the dense pollution within the base.

to conquer new land:
artillery train because you need tons of ammo

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by herkalurk »

JimBarracus wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:52 am
to defend captured areas:
static turrets with activated train station for resupply
new nests are usually small groups which can be taken out immediatly; no growth possible
benefit: you save on train station names because you don't need dedicated names for every station.
ammo demand is relativly low, especially when your wall is so far out, that you keep the dense pollution within the base.

to conquer new land:
artillery train because you need tons of ammo
I save on station names by having my artillery train use my player parking spots at the remote locations. I only have a few stations dedicated to the artillery train.

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by vanatteveldt »

DaveMcW wrote: ↑
Fri Oct 19, 2018 5:58 pm
The best way to supply artillery turrets is to manufacture the shells locally.
the production time is a pain though...

is there any benefit of using static turrets? it would be nice if they had e.g. a range advantage..

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by zOldBulldog »

vanatteveldt wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 24, 2018 7:48 am
DaveMcW wrote: ↑
Fri Oct 19, 2018 5:58 pm
The best way to supply artillery turrets is to manufacture the shells locally.
the production time is a pain though...

is there any benefit of using static turrets? it would be nice if they had e.g. a range advantage..
Local manufacture of shells might work if you are using fixed artillery emplacements to defend your base. Or you can use trains on a patrol route.

But to move out and clear a new area the only approach that makes sense (with the current design and stack sizes) is a central shell manufacturing facility that loads artillery trains, placing blueprints for an Outpost station with laser turrets and walls around it, and calling the train to the Outpost. Once you cleared the new area you can establish permanent defenses for the new area , possibly tear down the Outpost if it was temporary, and rinse and repeat

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by vanatteveldt »

zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 24, 2018 8:12 am
Local manufacture of shells might work if you are using fixed artillery emplacements to defend your base. Or you can use trains on a patrol route.

But to move out and clear a new area the only approach that makes sense (with the current design and stack sizes) is a central shell manufacturing facility that loads artillery trains, placing blueprints for an Outpost station with laser turrets and walls around it, and calling the train to the Outpost. Once you cleared the new area you can establish permanent defenses for the new area , possibly tear down the Outpost if it was temporary, and rinse and repeat

Yeah it's pretty clear that for offensive operation a train is the way to go.

Not too sure about the local manufacture. It requires 3 components, including 8 explosives that have stack size 50, so it's still quite limited, and the production time is annoying as well. But I suppose it's fun to set up for a cluster of turrets :)

(still, it would be nice if static turrets at least had a range bonus, would give some reason to use them defensively - or just disable auto-targetting on artillery wagons)

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by zOldBulldog »

vanatteveldt wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 24, 2018 8:38 am
zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 24, 2018 8:12 am
Local manufacture of shells might work if you are using fixed artillery emplacements to defend your base. Or you can use trains on a patrol route.

But to move out and clear a new area the only approach that makes sense (with the current design and stack sizes) is a central shell manufacturing facility that loads artillery trains, placing blueprints for an Outpost station with laser turrets and walls around it, and calling the train to the Outpost. Once you cleared the new area you can establish permanent defenses for the new area , possibly tear down the Outpost if it was temporary, and rinse and repeat

Yeah it's pretty clear that for offensive operation a train is the way to go.

Not too sure about the local manufacture. It requires 3 components, including 8 explosives that have stack size 50, so it's still quite limited, and the production time is annoying as well. But I suppose it's fun to set up for a cluster of turrets :)

(still, it would be nice if static turrets at least had a range bonus, would give some reason to use them defensively - or just disable auto-targetting on artillery wagons)
Agreed. Try as I might I simply can't seem to find any good reasons to use static Artillery turrets over Artillery wagons. I can't even justify delivering ammo using cargo wagons, as the Artillery wagons themselves have higher capacity,

The only negative I see to artillery wagons is that they seem to be heavier than cargo ones, making trains just a little slower. But that is a very minor issue and easily fixed by adding an extra locomotive... if you even feel the need.

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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

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vanatteveldt wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 24, 2018 7:48 am
is there any benefit of using static turrets? it would be nice if they had e.g. a range advantage..
Nope. They have the same weapon stats. Though they have a 35% smaller footprint, slightly cheaper recipe, and 230% more hp.
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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by Escadin »

vanatteveldt wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 24, 2018 7:48 am
is there any benefit of using static turrets? it would be nice if they had e.g. a range advantage..
Escadin wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 20, 2018 3:35 pm
Point is also to have a better coverage.
Plopping down an artillery turret right next to the already existent resupply station is easier, only takes an additional inserter and ensures I can manually fire at any time without having to wait for some train to arrive or even worse manually interfere with their schedule. Nests within auto fire range get deleted instantly, not when a train happens to come by.

In the end there is the trade-off between having a turret at every station or a number of train between 1 and [station count].
The fewer trains you use, the smaller an area you cover at a time and the longer it takes to react to new nests and manual targeting calls.
The more trains you use, the closer you get to 'might as well have used turrets' dilemma - except the trains require more infrastructure, planning and attention.
Obviously not for siegeing and capturing land but for base defense.
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Re: Artillery train nest clearing strategy

Post by herkalurk »

zOldBulldog wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 24, 2018 8:47 am
Agreed. Try as I might I simply can't seem to find any good reasons to use static Artillery turrets over Artillery wagons. I can't even justify delivering ammo using cargo wagons, as the Artillery wagons themselves have higher capacity,

The only negative I see to artillery wagons is that they seem to be heavier than cargo ones, making trains just a little slower. But that is a very minor issue and easily fixed by adding an extra locomotive... if you even feel the need.
The only real use for static artillery is at the facility where you are producing the ammo. I have 4 static turrets at my home base where my train comes to reload. At this point they're mostly used for manual fire.

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