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Command a squadron of spaceships
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Legacy
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Post by Legacy » Mon May 30, 2005 11:46 pm

When you ram a ship, shouldn't it damage the ships involved if their armor has been destroyed and the internal structure is exposed?

If you are up against a ship or factory or especially a fuel depot when it blows up, shoudn't it damage you?

Maybe damaged ships should smoke or something when they reach a certain level of damage?

When the engines are gone, shouldn't the trail from them be gone as well?

Shoudn't missiles be able to collide with eachother?

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Post by OrigamiGuy » Tue May 31, 2005 3:52 am

Rammed ships really should get damaged. Spacecraft, historically, have been extremely delicate in order to preserve space and mass, increasing performance. I think the mass of the ships should play a bigger role in determining the resulting velocities: It doesn't make sense that a 400-credit ship would be completely stopped by ramming into a 36-credit probe. One is MUCH heavier than the other. Explosion damage would have to depend on mass as well.

Ships DO smoke when they get damaged; it's one of the best ways to track down a damaged ship that's just out of your radar range. Engine glow... that's a little picky, but I can see your point.

Missiles hitting each other is a little different, though. In most projectile environments, there's almost no chance of collision, which makes sense when you account for the size of the missiles compared to the size of the ships. Think: If you're hitting golf balls at a crowded driving range, how often do you see two balls hit in midair?
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Post by Old Man Johnson » Tue May 31, 2005 4:35 am

If you really wanted to be picky about collisions, you might say that ANY collision would cause damage. It makes sense, after all, you're not playing bumper cars, these are high-velocity space battles.
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Post by Steve! » Tue May 31, 2005 8:54 am

But then the shields on the ships are quite capable of taking blasts from 5-7 mton nuclear warheads, I think the damage involved in a collision would be utterly insignificant, compared to the missile damage.

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Post by Legacy » Tue May 31, 2005 9:59 am

That's why I said "if their armor has been destroyed." I am assuming that the reason the armo/shields are needed is because the internal structure is relatively frail, and the shields have specail composite layered protection to absorb the massive force of a nuke or impact.

And I guess I never noticed the increased smoke upon damage, I'll have to look for it next time.
Last edited by Legacy on Tue May 31, 2005 10:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Legacy » Tue May 31, 2005 10:02 am

That's a valid point on missiles too, I keep forgetting this is a 2d game in 3d space. But along those lines, shouldn't a ship be able to go over or under other objects...

Actually, I like that just the way it is.

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Post by OrigamiGuy » Tue May 31, 2005 1:53 pm

Actually, I like that just the way it is.


Hear, hear. I think adding in too much 3d awareness would completely alter the scope of the game. A lot of CM's appeal comes from its gameplay simplicity, and no way would I change that.

If all collisions would cause damage, then I still think inertia should play a part in it. Two ships colliding at high speed from opposite directions would cause higher damage, shields or no, and two ships who tap each other sideways going the same direction would cause almost no damage. The ships' vectors should be altered based on the masses of the two ships involved. This means that if you're in a much bigger ship, you could bull through and shove your wingmates out of the way to get to targets faster :-).

Also, collisions with something as large and dense as an asteroid would have to be almost crippling. It would certainly take a lot of the defensive appeal out of asteroid fields, which would even the playing field for both sides when fighting occurs inside asteroids. Slower speeds inside the 'roids would mean that stealth ships gain an edge, so perhaps 'roid fields could have some adverse affect on radar, to compensate.
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Post by cavemaniac1 » Tue May 31, 2005 2:38 pm

While we're talking about mass and velocity, here are a couple of things that have been preying on my mind (I know, I need to get out more!) :shock:

1: Maximum speed. Civilian craft go slow. Military vessels go fast. Both have a maximum velocity.

Why?

In space, as long as you apply thrust, you continue to accelerate (until you hit the mystical 'speed of light' - whatever that is! :D )

Surely civilian (and smaller, underpowered military) craft would be able to continue to accelerate, though at a much slower rate.

2: Is it my imagination or does the CM model allow for relitive speeds when it calculates the damage inflicted by missiles?

I've often destroyed a stationary or slow moving target (much to my surprise) with a single missile that I launched while at full speed, from far enough away for the missile to reach it's maximum velocity.

As an example of the above, imagine someone threw a rifle bullet at you - the impact would hurt. Now imagine they fired the same bullet at you - you could be killed!

A poor analogy perhaps, as the missile warhead is explosive so impact velocity is less important.
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Post by Steve! » Tue May 31, 2005 5:09 pm

I agree that while frail internal componants may be damaged during collisions a shield, that takes a 5 mton nuclear blast to disable, is going to have absolutely no trouble with a high speed collision. The heat and force produced in a nuclear shockwave is incredible, far surpassing anything that a bump into an asteroid would do, unless the ships are going at ultra high, velocities, which they dont seem to be considering their sizes.

A missile hit with no shields usually takes out 4 or more componants (according to the manual, shields are 4 times better at taking damage) so i think a collision at high speed with no armour might destroy one internal componant.

Frankly, I like it as it is, collisions are damaging enough already, causing you to stop dead in space making you very vulnearble. Also the AI is pretty useless as avoiding collisions currently, so if Sean didnt upgrade the AI, it would make battles in asteroid fields very short.

and cavemaniac,

1) yes, but that doesnt make for a very fun game, if all the ships keep increasing in speed. I could imagine things getting out of control and silly, very quickly :) . As it is everything has a maximum speed, though if your flying at steady speed your not actually using your engines at all, hence why out of fuel missiles do not loose speed.

2) I don't think CM takes this into account. And, as it is explosive, velocity would have little effect on damage, unless the missile was forced into, or through, the armour before detonating, I'd assume the armour would attempt to detonate the missile on contact.

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Post by Old Man Johnson » Wed Jun 01, 2005 4:51 am

Um, OrigamiGuy, if stealth ships have an advantage in asteroid fields, how would adversely affecting radar compensate? Wouldn't it just make the stealth ships harder to see and thus more powerful?
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Post by OrigamiGuy » Wed Jun 01, 2005 1:50 pm

Um, OrigamiGuy, if stealth ships have an advantage in asteroid fields, how would adversely affecting radar compensate? Wouldn't it just make the stealth ships harder to see and thus more powerful?


The idea I had in mind was that stealth ships generally have no room for serious radar (since it's taken up by stealth modules). Any decent non-stealth fighter has more radar than stealth, so any asteroid field penalty would reduce the stealth ship's radar to almost zero.

Any ship with more than that would have far less noticeable penalties. For example: If asteroids were damaging on collisions, then speeds would have to go down dramatically in asteroid fields. Long-range missile shots are almost impossible in asteroid fields, so combat in the 'roids is reduced to low-speed sneaking at point blank range with Plectrons. If a stealth ship has almost no radar to begin with AND has even less in an asteroid field, then it has almost no way of seeing enemies in the asteroids, whereas a ship with plenty of decent radar and no stealth would have more of a fighting chance, both being able to see and being able to hide better. It would effectively be giving free stealth against stealth ships.
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Post by Old Man Johnson » Wed Jun 01, 2005 6:10 pm

But it would put ships without much radar at a serious disadvantage.
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Post by BoxZone_Author » Wed Jun 01, 2005 10:07 pm

OrigamiGuy wrote:Rammed ships really should get damaged. Spacecraft, historically, have been extremely delicate in order to preserve space and mass, increasing performance.


But that was before the advent of the Critical Mass engine. With this engine ships can afford to be strong, heavy and tough. The fact that such huge missles that gets past shields only destroy a few internal components shows that an impact would have negligible effect.

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