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A few random ideas

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  • A few random ideas

    Shields:

    I forget who brought up this idea, but it had to do with keeping a thin layer of plasma just off of a ships hull to deflect laser weapons. I think this is a good idea, and we should let ships have "shields" (not all ships would have them; its a ship stat) that, when turned on, releases some plasma which is held against the surface of the ship through an electromagnetic field. In game terms, this means that a ship is impervious to laser fire. A certain amount of the plasma would continually seep through the field while the shield was on, so the ship would every so often have to restock its reserves of the plasma. This amount is not modified by the amount of fire directed against the shield. At, say, 50% plasma, the shield would become ineffective.

    Planetary "railgun":

    This would just be a long tube sticking down into the ground with a large metal ball at the bottom. Inside the metal ball is a device that projects a non-gravity field (i.e. gravity doesn't exist inside of it). WHOOSH! Ball flies out of tube at high speed and hopefully hits ship in orbit. In game terms this weapon can only be built near or on the equator, and has a (probably small) chance of hitting any ships in orbit near or above it, but any ships that are hit are destroyed instantly. It can hit more than one ship.

    Orbits: We should have ships have to go into orbits of some sort around a planet before attacking it. While it's in orbit, it moves over a series of tiles each turn, and can attack those tiles or tiles near those tiles. Also, spy satellites will only see part of the planet at a time. If a ship is attacking a planet, it CAN just go into a "flyby" that brings it into range of the target for a short period of time, but doesn't lock it into orbit around the planet.

  • #2
    Re: A few random ideas

    Originally posted by skywalker
    Orbits: We should have ships have to go into orbits of some sort around a planet before attacking it. While it's in orbit, it moves over a series of tiles each turn, and can attack those tiles or tiles near those tiles. Also, spy satellites will only see part of the planet at a time. If a ship is attacking a planet, it CAN just go into a "flyby" that brings it into range of the target for a short period of time, but doesn't lock it into orbit around the planet.
    This of course depends on the length of the (micro) turn, but unless a space craft is in a geostationary orbit it will be practically all over the planet, or at least able to cover a significant portion of the surface during one turn.

    How complex are the orbital mechanics going to be anyway? Should all orbits be assumed to be spherical, for example? Or better (worse?) yet, are the ships just "in orbit" and abstracted away like satellites in SMAC?

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    • #3
      NO! NO ABSTRACTION!

      That's just awful. Plus, it makes defense of a planet too easy.

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      • #4
        Your original suggestion that ships only have a fixed set of tiles above which they are each turn is also an unrealistic abstraction... how much detail are you looking forward to, actually?

        If turn lengths are even as short as one week (which I presume is already discarded as too short in another thread), then a space craft in almost any orbit can access pretty much the whole planet per turn. On the other hand, during battles (ship -> planet) you could take into account exact orbits or flyby trajectories, but that wouldn't apply to spy satellites very well, I think.

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        • #5
          We have to have unrealism somewhere. Let's make the unrealism work for playability.

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          • #6
            Agreed. What I am not so sure about where you'd draw the line yourself...

            Orbit = on/off switch (like SMAC)
            Orbit = an area above a set of tiles
            Orbit = always circular and geostationary
            Orbit = circular, not necessary geostationary
            Orbit = elliptical, follows kepler's laws
            Orbit = a special case of space ship trajectories

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            • #7
              I like the last one, but you should be able to tell a ship to go into a specific orbit, such as a geostationary orbit over a specific point.

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              • #8
                Being motionless over a single point on the globe is possible only over equator, by the way. Useful if you already have control over the planet, less so if you're trying to evade planetary defenses.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Leland
                  Being motionless over a single point on the globe is possible only over equator, by the way.
                  Wrong. You forgot about Lagrange points (at least L4/L5). And any ship with "unlimited" propulsion system (saw that somewhere at the forum) may afford almost any non-Kepler orbit (triangles etc)
                  BTW, "zero-gravity field" is strictly against most of laws, including but not limited to, energy conservation law, both Special and Geleral Relativity and many others. In fact, long "space elevator" is enough to accelerating anything to high velocities (sling effect).
                  If you don't see my avatar, your monitor is incapable to display 128 bit colors.
                  Stella Polaris Development Team, ex-Graphics Manager

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                  • #10
                    Re: A few random ideas

                    Originally posted by skywalker
                    I forget who brought up this idea
                    http://apolyton.net/forums/showthrea...30#post1562830

                    You see, deflecting electromagnetic radiation via plasma is't especialy bright idea. You'll need really dense plasma in order to match beam frequency with plasma electorn frequency and you may still fail due to so-called "beam self-focusing" or "beam canalization" due to pondromotore (think I've misspelled this in English) force. Dense plasma is't especialy handy thing, BTW. You may reproduce the same effect using thin layers of some material (Al will do) some distance away from the ship; beam will create plasma cloud what eats all beam energy. But, man, this is really the same thing I wrote some time ago it this thread, just read about lasers.
                    http://apolyton.net/forums/showthrea...13#post1510413
                    If you don't see my avatar, your monitor is incapable to display 128 bit colors.
                    Stella Polaris Development Team, ex-Graphics Manager

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                    • #11
                      I thought I mentioned that it only happened over the equator.

                      *checks post*

                      Never mind.

                      Btw, though, in the other orbits it should only be over one point at a time.

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