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-   -   Ship Talk (http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showthread.php?t=45108)

jars_u March 21st, 2010 07:45 PM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ed Kolis (Post 736529)
the movement system is Cartesian-vector-based (like Stars!)

:confused: Cartesian-vector-based ...so the Cartesian coordinate plane can still be done in hexes RIGHT? :D

I'm afraid I'm not familiar with Stars! But on old image of an SSI game comes to mind but I found this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stars!

is this the game you are referring to?

Arralen March 22nd, 2010 06:39 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jars_u (Post 736576)
I'm afraid I'm not familiar with Stars! But on old image of an SSI game comes to mind but I found this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stars!
is this the game you are referring to?

Yes.
That THE STARS! GAME of ultimate and everlasting fame - which lots of people would be still playing today (and some still do, actually), if it ...
A) wasn't a 16-Bit game written for Win3.1
B) had TCP/IP network gaming capability
C) had more exciting combat than an auto-resolved chessboard
D) had any AI to speak of

;)

Arralen March 22nd, 2010 07:01 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jars_u (Post 736576)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ed Kolis (Post 736529)
the movement system is Cartesian-vector-based (like Stars!)

:confused: Cartesian-vector-based ...so the Cartesian coordinate plane can still be done in hexes RIGHT?

Forgot - no, you can't do vector-based thingies in hexes.
No squares, no hexes.

Only small dots and and long movement arrows. ;)


Btw., I'm still not convinced that firing arcs make any sense.

How will ships be depicted in SL - with engine at one end only, as usual? And combat will be cartesian-vector based as well?
In that case, firing arcs are especially moot, because, as you'll remember, in space your engines are fighting inertia and gravity, not athmosperic drag. If you want to go 90° to the left, you'll have to point your ship ~135° backwards and fire your engines.
Now, if you're spining your ship around anytime to manoeuvre anyway, you can surely point it at a target for the short time required to fire the big spinal gun.

Moo2 got this completely wrong, as they completely left out inertia - for longitudinal movement. But turning the ship costs movement points, what does not make any sense from a physical p.o.v., because the energy (and therefore time) required to turn the ship is much lower than whats required to make it move somewhere.

Moo2 is also a striking example why firing arcs don't make sense, even from a game design viewpoint: By using "front only" you can pack much more weapons than the AI (mostly uses "front + sides"), and most fights are over before the ships get even near each other.

Now if the battle plane(?) was much bigger, and the firing speed of the ships much lower, and movement & turning speed much higher (no firing on every movement turn), then firing arcs would make a sensible difference ...

jars_u March 22nd, 2010 07:21 PM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Arralen (Post 736634)
How will ships be depicted in SL - with engine at one end only, as usual?

I would not want to sacrifice game play for realism but I think in ship design most games (certainly SE4 and 5) depict engines at one end only but I think maneuvering thrusters not at that end should be required for general movement. I think in a 2d x, y axis tactical map firing arcs could be depicted in a simplified way that would still have a significant impact on games especially for capital size ships:

* bow placed weapons - 180 degree arc (360 if turret mounted)
* port/starboard placed weapons - 180 degree arc
* stern placed weapons - 180 degree arc

assuming there is no z axis "top" and "bottom" would not be meaningful.

For me it boils down to really enjoying the ship building aspect of 4x games and wanting to tweak and really eek out the best designs possible so I don't want to sacrifice options whereas with something like economy I be more willing to K.I.S.S. it.

Gregstrom March 23rd, 2010 07:49 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
I can see some point to firing arcs. If you have a drive system that requires your ship to have a bow and stern, then maneuvering is quite restricted while you're firing.

Mostly I'm with jars_u - I'd far rather have a combat system that's enjoyable than a realistic one.

Louist March 25th, 2010 04:14 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Since I seem to have opened this particular can of worms, I'd have to also request that combat not sacrifice enjoyment in favor of realism. Being the nervous diplomat that I often am, I also have to say that I will, of course, live with whatever combat mechanics the developers in their infinite wisdom choose to bless the game with ;)

I like firing arcs, I find them more realistic from a ship design aspect than, say, that magic ribbon around the Enterprise that shoots out phasers in any possible direction. Designing and producing a weapon system that has a full unobstructed 360-degree view would be orders of magnitude more difficult than simply placing separate weapons to the aft, fore, and so on.

That said, I've never really considered the physics and realities behind space combat. This may indeed not be the most realistic way to do things, but it is something I am familiar with and know I enjoy. If it turns out that firing-arcs are unnecessary or contrary to fun-making, I'll gladly give another system a chance.

Err, I forgot to hit the quote button, and the posts I wanted the reference seem to be too far back to grab from below, but here's the gist: Ed, I wasn't at all knocking the SotS economic model. It works great. I was merely shining my torch on the fact that the game is heavily geared towards blowing ships up, and researching bigger guns that allow one to blow up ships in new and interesting ways.

InfStorm March 26th, 2010 11:53 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
To avoid my long diseration on ship design, just hit summaries.

Including firing arcs adds in options like:
Fixed fire weapons
Turrets of varrying widths of fire (45/90/180 degrees)
Broadsides

Vector based movement adds options like:
Much more varied movement (thrust to mass ratio for example)
engines who's ability to turn the ship varies
Flying Backwards to fire at the guy tailing you
Limits on maneuverablity depending on the pilot (Rasberry jam anyone?)

One thing vector based movement & Firing arcs actually make more desirable is fighter craft. Smaller mass ships are easier to maneuver for less fuel. (are we tracking fuel?)

With the power of computers today, it would be just a matter of Math to do a "near-real physics" for space combat. I say "near-real" because real physics doesn't make for drama in space combat.

jars_u March 27th, 2010 08:52 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Louist (Post 737104)
I like firing arcs, I find them more realistic from a ship design aspect than, say, that magic ribbon around the Enterprise that shoots out phasers in any possible direction.

In sum I would like to say:

YES! :D

jars_u March 27th, 2010 09:23 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by InfStorm (Post 737300)
Vector based movement adds options like:
Much more varied movement (thrust to mass ratio for example)
engines who's ability to turn the ship varies
Flying Backwards to fire at the guy tailing you
Limits on maneuverablity depending on the pilot (Rasberry jam anyone?).

As simple as it was - anyone who remembers the classic arcade game Asteroids - I think did a fair representation of 2D space movement. Adding weapons mounted in places other then just the "front" and converting to turn based movement - conceptually at least to me I think would be good general starting point.

Also just for the record I thought it was strawberry - but I checked - your right it was raspberry.

Xrati March 27th, 2010 11:25 AM

Re: Ship Talk
 
Complex combat play, leads to less playing enjoyment. Especially when you have to design them. You start the game with "maybe" some default ships and then spend the rest of your time designing them! No fun there. If you want to design ships with arcs and such, then I believe you will turn a lot of players off of the game. KISS rules are now in effect...


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