I don't have a problem with carriers being good. But they should have a role in a fleet, rather than be the fleet. When a carrier has the potential to be 5x as good as a same-sized non-carrier ship, that's a problem.
Carrier modules should probably be larger. A carrier should indeed be more logistically efficient than a fleet of tiny fighters, but not so much that it's overwhelming. Modules should perhaps be increased in size to where only large and huge ships can have them. Perhaps ships should also be limited, possibly even to one module.
As has been noted, 3 tiny fighters = 6 logistics. 1 Huge ship = 10 logistics. 5 tiny fighters = 10 logistics by themselves. If a huge ship could have ONE carrier module and pack on some other equipment, I would think that would be plenty powerful but it would have a more limited role in a fleet - and that's a good thing. It's a much simpler and easily balanced solution than adding area weapons or some kind of anti-fighter and trying to balance that.
It would also add 12 flavors of boring having a carrier with only 5 ships. If they were going to take a seriously simple route I'd rather them just nerf the range/damage by 30-50%, 3 logistics per bay, and add the manufacturing cost of the fighter to the carrier. When a fighter is destroyed you either buy it or fly it to a shipyard/starbase where it has to sit till it's rebuilt.
5 fighters lol what a joke that would be. I'd learn to mod just to fix what a broken boring carrier that would be. Not to be critical of you but just from my perspective it seems like a waste of something that could be much more awesome but not overpowered.
It's the larger picture that bothers me. I've made a collaborative case in this thread that would not only bring carriers in line but provide much more interesting content than there is now.
-Such as passive hull bonuses based on size in tech tree with 4 tiers. so to make a carrier effective you would need to research all of the tiny techs as well as the huge to make an effective carrier. Also making tiny ships not as potent against larger hulls due to absorption.(shouldn't be hard to implement and would change the battle dynamics)
- Specialty hulls that are more powerful. It would require the resources and research but properly fitted could be a match if fitted properly. Especially with the proper support modules that won't be able to be attached to fighters. Like the dreadnought idea I posted with bonus range.
-Multiple ship targeting really is a must. IT is really nonsense to me to see a huge hull with 30 laser that it can only fire at 1 ship at a time. If a huge hull could fire at 5 targets with range over fighters 1 dreadnought in a sniper set up with beams, its innate range, and a module could snipe 15 fighters before they even came into range. Not to mention this would go a LONG way into making the battle viewer that much more awesome seeing huge hulls hitting multiple targets. I stated above that tiny and small could only target 1 ship.
- Adding modules that help with dealing with the little buggers.
- Aoe flak was an exotic idea but I don't believe it's farfetched. it could just be high damage but does lower damage the larger the hull size. Even without aoe you could add implement this type of weapon I went into detail in a previous post.
Of course everything would need some tweaking. I do agree absolutely that carriers shouldn't be a win all. I want to be able to go well crap he has tons of carriers which variety of counters would I like to use.