Lately, some people have voiced concerns that batteries are too expensive, or that incursions ought to pay more, or both. Having done quite a bit of incursioning myself, I don't think incursion payout ought to be increased. But I do recognize that the new player experience in space hinges on being able to afford ship supplies. There truly aren't enough player-made (read: affordable) kinetic batteries out there to help new players embark on financially-viable, self-sustaining ship combat. To fix this, we should incentivize the production and use of kinetic batteries.
TL;DR: increasing kinetic battery batch size or increasing kinetic battery damage against organics or both would help new players engage with SM's space combat. For best results, increase both. To put a number on it, +20% to both batch size and damage against organics should do the trick.
As designed, kinetic batteries will not be as effective as em and thermal.
That's OK. But they have a place, and that's for starter ships that have
only 1 cannon and against organics, which die just as easily to kinetic as em/thermal (there's a note on CP generators later in the post). Let's help out our new pilots by
incentivizing the production and sale of more kinetic batteries. SM's
ship system is fun, attractive; my experience with the game was
revolutionized when I learned how to fly. That's the game feature that
helped me to stick with the game through the pains of learning how MUDs
Increasing batch size reduces the cost to produce each kinetic battery, thereby increasing the manufacturer's ability to make a profit. It also can mean an increase the number of batteries out there in the wild, assuming producers decide to make and sell kinetics instead of other batteries. I suggest increasing the batch size from 10 to 12, or a 20% increase. Enough said, I think.
However, the space economy is not all about marks; marks aren't that hard to come by for seasoned players. So, increasing profitability of kinetic batteries alone probably won't incentivize manufacturers to a sufficient extent to help new pilots. To double down on incentive to produce kinetic batteries, increase their damage against organics (the way this helps new pilots should be self-explanatory). Such a change should increase kinetic battery appeal to all pilots, including seasoned pilots. Seasoned pilots sometimes go after hard organic incursions, but this isn't really where the benefit lies for seasoned pilots: CP generators are organics, too. Right now, CP action is, well, inactive, but that won't always be the case. (Side note: Reducing the costs to take down generators would probably help CP activity.) Taking batteries just for the generators increases the amount of supplies you're taking into battle, assuming there are enemy ships to contest. The power increase is offset by the risk of having to take more supplies to tackle generators and player ships most effectively. But, by making kinetic batteries appeal to more of the playerbase, that's additional incentive to produce them, hopefully increasing availability. I think it would be sufficient.
So, that's what I've got. This post is the product of talking with Rhindara and Azlyn. (I really hope this wasn't addressed in the monthly discussion. I was at a wedding.)