Reposting informations that a friend uncovered for me through playtesting.
Note, these comments are taken from multiple conversations spread through multiple days:
otoh a lot of HW1 strikecrafts seem to apparently have difficulties keeping their formations together I heard.
[2015-02-28 8:36:24 PM] Ludovic: though it might be dependent on stance setting but I dunno
[2015-02-28 8:36:25 PM] 56tr: They’re worse at it than the original. HOWEVER they are also better at dodging fire in formation than the original.
Sadly, they seem to have removed one of my most favored bomber tactics
[2015-02-28 8:40:56 PM] 56tr: Sphere formation no longer causes fighters to form a sphere around the thing they’re attacking.
[2015-02-28 8:41:02 PM] 56tr:
[2015-02-28 8:41:14 PM] 56tr: Only things they GUARD do that, and they can only seem to guard friendly targets, unless I’m missing something.
((this last bit is important, as it might be giving explanations as to why ships break formations sometimes/often)
Update - sphere formation DOES work, it’s just done differently now.
[2015-03-02 4:25:06 PM] 56tr: Fighters in a sphere will repeatedly contract and expand the formation - they all fly outwards in a sphere, then (on aggressive tactics at least) fly in all at once and fire as much as possible, then fly off away to resume the sphere, then another closing attack.
[2015-03-02 4:26:55 PM] 56tr: Fighters are also a bit smarter about picking targets to attack and no longer need to be micromanaged.
[2015-03-02 4:27:11 PM] 56tr: I’m finding they are quick to jump in, sometimes TOO much so.
[2015-03-02 4:27:15 PM] 56tr: “Friendlies under fire. Rolling in!”
[2015-03-02 4:27:51 PM] 56tr: They will not sit there standing idle while larger ships are being attacked - they will break position (and let you know they are doing so!) to attack threats attacking other friendlies.
If you hear comments like “friendlies under attack, breaking formation” you know your fighters have taken the liberty of moving to defend another unit.
[2015-03-02 7:39:29 PM] 56tr: So pay attention to battle chatter. So far they’ve told me every time they’ve decided to take action on their own.
[2015-03-02 7:39:35 PM] 56tr: Which is something I greatly appreciate as a commander.
I’m reposting this here because I feel this sound like it might explain a lot of the “breaking formation” behavior of ships in formation in the game, potentially to the interest of players here.