Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.


Messages - Steve Walmsley

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 430
1
C# Aurora / Re: Replacing PDCs
« on: Yesterday at 04:04:00 PM »
Thanks for all the comments and suggestions. I am going away for a week on holiday so I won't be posting (or working on Aurora). I'll start work on ground units when I get back.

2
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes List
« on: Yesterday at 05:29:39 AM »
Logistics and Ground Combat Research

Due to the increase in Logistics techs for C# Aurora and the planned revamp of ground combat design, the Logistics / Ground Combat research field will be split into two separate fields. There are now nine research fields in total.

3
The Academy / Re: Advice on on-board missile sensors
« on: September 22, 2017, 03:48:28 AM »
Passive sensors on missiles will be much more effective in C# Aurora due to the changes in the passive sensor model

4
C# Aurora / Re: Replacing PDCs
« on: September 20, 2017, 12:03:13 PM »
How much hull space take an energy weapon + targeting + power source ? 5 ? 10 ?
Each hull space means 50 tons isn't it? So we speak about 250 to 500 tons for a single energy weapon.

A troop transport bay is 2500 tons and can hold one battalion size ground unit. A combat drop module is 500 tons (1000 tons for the cryo version). This is why I think a new transport module is needed for vehicle or surface-to-orbit units and the existing transport bays and drop modules will be infantry only.

I think for ground units that have ship-equivalent weapons, such as lasers or CIWS, the unit will need to be large enough for the various fire controls, reactors and weapons. Once designed, I think this should still be a single ground unit without tracking the individual components. Otherwise, we get into complexities about recharge rates, etc.. Some part of the damage resolution will have to be a chance of the weapon being disabled and there would be some equivalent of repair, rather than readiness recovery. I haven't figured out the details yet, but I don't want ground units to become 'ships-on-the-ground'. They should retain the relatively simplicity of the existing ground units but with additional capabilities.

5
The Academy / Re: RamDisk
« on: September 20, 2017, 10:35:37 AM »
If I remember correctly, Steve said a playable (but probably not bug-free) version will be ready at the end of this year or early next year.

There won't be a public version this year but I hope to start a test campaign this year. Won't be any updates in the next week or so as I have social commitments every night this week and I am in Croatia all next week.

Back to normal after that.

6
C# Aurora / Replacing PDCs
« on: September 18, 2017, 06:05:06 PM »
I posted a comment in the changes discussion thread about removing PDC and enhancing ground forces to compensate. Having given this some thought, it solves a lot of issues in the game that add complexity without really adding a lot in the way of additional game play. PDCs create exceptions for a number of rules, add complexity (in the sense of awkwardness rather than variety) to ground combat and their maintenance-free status can be an exploit. They create a lot of orders and rules around prefabrication and assembly and can't be effectively upgraded.

I've decided to replace them with some additional types of ground forces to improve defences planetary defences and keep all 'ships' in space. This thread is to look at the options for the ground combat enhancements. At the moment I am thinking along the following lines (but I am open to suggestions):

1) A unit with air defence capability that functions as a CIWS for the planet.

2) A unit with similar capability to ship-based energy weapons, designed to fire ground to orbit, rather than ground to ground.

3) Probably adding some basic form of ground unit design rather than having specific unit types. This would include (for example) CIWS techs, ground to orbit techs based on ship-weapons, ground-based attack/defence split into armour and infantry-based techs (based on weapon & armour techs), maybe the bombardment ability of Titans so as an alternative to Titans you could develop different forms of artillery. Concealment tech to make units harder to strike from orbit. 'Garrison' rating separated from defence. 'Movement' tech could be personal armour, tracked vehicles, combat walkers, etc.. A combination of these techs would determine unit cost, size, capability, etc.

4) Troop transport bays and combat drop modules would be for infantry (personal armour) types - a different module would be needed for heavy armour or ground to orbit capable units.

5) The type of planet could affect which units are most effective - specialist units for extreme temperature, or mountainous terrain (based on tectonic rating), or mostly water planets, etc. Terrain would also determine the effectiveness of different movement types.

6) An option to be considered is removing the restriction on energy weapons in atmosphere. Ground units armed with ship-type weapons would become a serious deterrent, especially given they are more dispersed than ships and harder to eliminate. I would need to add rules on destroying installations from orbit, but not sure how much of a problem that is given that most powers want to capture installations rather than destroy them. Energy-armed spacecraft in orbit could be assigned for fire-support missions when assigned to direct support of a HQ unit.

7) Units would not increase in capability with tech and would use the tech at the time of creation. However, units could be converted into a cadre unit (and retain their experience) so they can be used as the basis for a new unit with improved capability.

8) These changes could lead to a paradigm where it is very hard to bombard a well-defended planet from orbit so you (still) have to nuke from a distance and risk environmental and industrial damage, or develop very fast drop pods to get troops to the surface (through defensive fire) to take out the ground-based defences (Hoth).

Comments and suggestions welcome.

7
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes Discussion
« on: September 18, 2017, 03:29:49 PM »
i dunno if this has been asked.  What engine is this being made on

C# and Windows Forms - not that popular as a gaming platform :)

8
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes Discussion
« on: September 18, 2017, 03:48:40 AM »
My intention wouldn't be to remove ground defences entirely, just replace PDCs with ground units that have non-ground capabilities and move to more detailed ground combat. For example, some form of air defence unit that functions as a CIWS for the planet. Perhaps a 'ground to orbit meson battery' unit, etc..

In this case, ground units should probably be more directly affected by racial tech. it may mean I have to move to some form of simple ground unit design where you create your own unit types. This would include CIWS techs, ground to orbit techs based on ship-weapons, ground-based attack/defence split into armour and infantry-based techs (based on weapon & armour techs), maybe the bombardment ability of Titans so as an alternative to Titans you could develop different forms of artillery. Concealment tech to make units harder to strike from orbit. 'Movement' tech could be personal armour, tracked vehicles, combat walkers, etc.

Troop transport bays and combat drop modules would be for infantry (personal armour) types - a different module would be needed for heavy armour or ground to orbit capable units.

Perhaps the type of planet could affect which units are most effective - specialist units for extreme temperature, or mountainous terrain, or mostly water planets, etc. Terrain would also determine the effectiveness of different movement types.

Another option to be considered is removing the restriction on energy weapons in atmosphere. Ground units armed with ship-type weapons would become a serious deterrent, especially given they are more dispersed than ships and harder to eliminate. I would need to add rules on destroying installations from orbit, but not sure how much of a problem that is given that most powers want to capture installations rather than destroy them.

In fact, this could lead to a paradigm where it is very hard to bombard a well-defended planet from orbit so you (still) have to nuke from a distance and risk environmental and industrial damage, or develop very fast drop pods to get troops to the surface (through defensive fire) to take out the ground-based defences (Hoth).

Anyway, just thinking out loud at the moment.

9
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes Discussion
« on: September 17, 2017, 04:50:17 PM »
Given that a PDC is on planet (along with the stockpile) it seems to me that a PDC does not need access to ordnance transfer infrastructure so long as there's a stockpile on the colony, but it also exchanges ordnance at the standard rate.

Yes, this means that a PDC with a sufficiently large magazine and some Ordnance Transfer Systems can serve as a cut rate OTStation. It does, however, have one limitation; it can't gain more MSP per hour than the standard rate from the colony. Sufficiently missile heavy fleets won't be able to make effective use of this trick, but it's great for topping off fleets or as a far forward position supplying long range surveyors with probes.


However, there's a few other things that need answering with rearming and refueling. First, there's the implication that without having researched the refueling and ordnance transfer systems it's impossible to refuel or rearm fleets once they're launched. While I get that in a standard game these techs are presumed known, in a non-TN start these techs should not be known yet. As such it would probably be alright to set a baseline transfer rate equal to 3/4th of the starting underway replenishment techs.

Second, there's the implication that refueling and rearming from a tanker or collier with the 500 ton resupply systems and linking as many of those systems with a single ship, than would be possible with a Station or Hub, as those have infinite links but only 1 link with a given ship. This is rather exploitable, and easily solved by noting ships without a resupply system can not exceed the resupply rate of the highest resupply system available.

Third, while the first level of Spaceport is immensely useful, given that it halves cargo transfer time and grants the ability to provide unlimited refueling and rearming links, at 3600 BP it's kind of expensive for shortening cargo transfer times to 1/3rd the rate without a Spaceport. It might be better to drop the ordnance transfer and refueling functions from the Spaceport and return it to a 1200 BP structure that helps with cargo transfers.

This then leads to the 4th and final point. A non-TN start should not start with a Spaceport, Ordnance Transfer Station or Refueling Station as no Earth based polity would be able to haul the 100kt+ facilities into orbit without TN support, but these facilities, much like the Sector Commands, should probably be gated behind a tech. Perhaps a Basic Naval Supply Network technology that unlocks the facilities and the first level of transfer rate improvement, as well as the Underway Refueling, Underway Rearming and the Cargo Handling technologies?

1) Refuelling Systems and Ordnance Transfer Systems are conventional tech so you start with them in a conventional game.

2) Not sure what you mean here. Each collier or tanker has a set amount of transfer per sub-pulse and can't exceed that (even if it refuels multiple ships). Each ship also has a max transfer per sub-pulse limit (which is set to the max transfer rate of any ship trying to refuel or rearm it), so you gain no advantage in trying multiple refuels in a turn.

3) I want the spaceport to be a major facility. It combines two 1200 BP stations, plus the cargo handling. Plus I might give it some other ability before the game is completed.

4) The Spaceport, Ordnance Transfer Station and Refuelling Station are all ground-based facilities and also conventional tech so there is no problem with a non-TN start having them.

With regard to the PDC, I am seriously considering removing PDCs from the game. They create exceptions for a number of rules, confuse new players, add complexity to ground combat without necessarily adding a commensurate improvement in game play, and their maintenance-free status can be an exploit. I may replace them with some additional types of ground forces to improve defences planetary defences and keep all 'ships' in space. One of their major advantages is to allow maintenance-free bases on new colonies, but even that is no longer as great an advantage given the new maintenance system (you can build orbital bases that can provide their own maintenance facilities and just ship in supplies).

10
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes Discussion
« on: September 17, 2017, 01:16:02 PM »
Regarding

does this impact PDC?

Interesting question. As things stands you can reload a PDC using the mechanics I laid out, because you can add a collier to the PDC fleet, or reload directly if the planet has an ordnance transfer station / spaceport. The question is whether a PDC should have some extra function beyond that.

11
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes List
« on: September 17, 2017, 12:12:11 PM »
Ordnance Transfer Orders

With the new ordnance transfer rules, I am changing how some of the ordnance transfer orders work.

The first major change is that a collier within a fleet can be set to automatically transfer ordnance to or from other ships in the fleet. You can flag a collier as being at one of seven ordnance transfer statuses; None, Load Fleet, Replace Fleet, Remove Fleet, Load Sub-Fleet, Replace Sub-Fleet, Remove Sub-Fleet.

When this flag is set to Load Fleet or Load Sub-Fleet, each collier will load ordnance into the magazines of non-colliers within its own fleet (or sub-fleet) as that fleet continues with its normal orders (the transfer itself is not an order). Essentially, the collier will keep the fleet's magazines topped up. The rate of ordnance transfer will be based on the ordnance transfer system of the collier multiplied by the parent race’s underway replenishment tech (unless the fleet is stationary). The missiles being loaded will be based on what is missing from the ship's magazine when compared to the class loadout, starting with the largest missiles first (although smaller missiles will be loaded if there is insufficient time in the sub-pulse to load a larger one). However, missiles will only be added using this order and missiles that do not match the current class loadout will not be removed.

When this flag is set to Replace Fleet or Replace Sub-Fleet, each collier will remove any missiles that do not match the current class loadout and replace them with those from the class loadout (assuming the collier has a sufficient stockpile) for any non-colliers within its own fleet (or sub-fleet) . The collier will remove non-loadout missiles from the target ship while it has magazine space remaining, then add class loadout missiles to create space. Essentially, the collier will alternate loading and unloading as necessary to create the correct loadout.

When this flag is set to Remove Fleet or Remove Sub-Fleet, the collier will unload all missiles from non-colliers within its own fleet (or sub-fleet), as long as it has space to store them.

The current ‘Provide Ordnance to Fleet’ order has been replaced with several new orders to facilitate the above. These include:

Join and Add Ordnance to Fleet
Join and Add Ordnance to Sub-Fleet
Join and Replace Ordnance in Fleet
Join and Replace Ordnance in Sub-Fleet
Join and Remove Ordnance from Fleet
Join and Remove Ordnance from Sub-Fleet

The fleet containing the collier will become part of the target fleet and switch to an appropriate ordnance transfer status depending on the order. You can also use an 'Absorb' order to collect a collier with an existing status set. I may look at adding ship-level conditional orders (rather than fleet) so that colliers/tankers can detach when empty and return home without player supervision.

A new 'Load from Ordnance Transfer Hub' order has been added. This order requires a second fleet containing at least one ordnance transfer hub as the destination. On arrival, any ships in the fleet with magazines will receive ordnance according to their class loadouts until all magazines are full, or the ordnance transfer hub runs out of ordnance. No ordnance will be removed by the hubs. All ships in the fleet will receive ordnance, including colliers. Once completed, the fleet will move on to its next order. If the fleet containing the ordnance transfer hub has any movement orders, the ordnance transfer will not take place and the ordnance transfer order will be marked as completed. Multiple hubs in the target fleet will not increase the rate of ordnance transfer but they can all contribute ordnance.

A new 'Replace at Ordnance Transfer Hub' order has been added. This order functions in a similar way to above except that any ordnance not in the class loadout will be removed by the hubs. The mechanics of this process are the same as the ordnance transfer within fleets above.

A new 'Unload to Ordnance Transfer Hub' order allows colliers to deliver ordnance to the hubs.

The existing ‘Load Ordnance from Colony’ order will remain but can only be used at colonies that have either a Spaceport or an Ordnance Transfer Station. On arrival, the fleet will receive ordnance until all its magazines are full, or the colony runs out of appropriate ordnance. All ships in the fleet will be receive ordnance, including colliers. Once completed, the fleet will move on to its next order. Multiple spaceports or ordnance transfer stations at the colony will not increase the rate of ordnance transfer.

The 'Unload Ordnance to Colony' order also remains but can only be used at colonies that have either a Spaceport or an Ordnance Transfer Station.

Any order involving the transfer of ordnance to or from a colony or ordnance transfer hub will use the current racial ordnance transfer tech to determine the rate of transfer.

Note this means that significantly more planning will be required in this version of Aurora to ensure missile-armed ships can be reloaded at the frontier. It will no longer be possible to dump ordnance on the nearest available rock. Colonies will require a spaceport or an ordnance transfer station before they can support missile-armed fleets. Alternatively, colliers can accompany fleets, or a deep space base with an ordnance transfer hub can be established.

12
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes List
« on: September 17, 2017, 09:30:13 AM »
Ordnance Transfer Mechanics

In C# Aurora, transferring ordnance is no longer instant and ships without specialised equipment cannot exchange ordnance in space. A ship can only receive ordnance at a Spaceport, an Ordnance Transfer Station, a ship with a Ordnance Transfer System, a base with a Ordnance Transfer Hub or in a military hangar bay.

A new technology line - Ordnance Transfer Systems - provides the basis of the rate of ordnance transfer and allows ships to mount systems to transfer ordnance to or from other ships. The baseline system (Ordnance Transfer System: 40 MSP per Hour) sets the racial ordnance transfer rate at 40 MSP per hour and allows the use of the first ship-mounted Ordnance Transfer System. There are ten further steps in the tech progression with the highest tech system allowing ordnance transfer at 400 MSP per hour.

Spaceports, Ordnance Transfer Stations or Ordnance Transfer Hubs will always use the highest tech ordnance transfer rate and can transfer ordnance to or from an unlimited number of ships simultaneously. However, the ships involved must be stationary. Hangar Bays also use the highest tech ordnance transfer rate (mainly to avoid multiple hangar bay types).

Spaceports have increased in cost to 3600 BP but can now be moved by freighters. They are equal to four research facilities for transport purposes (or 80 factories). They retain their existing bonuses to loading and unloading cargo.

Ordnance Transfer Stations are a new installation with a cost of 1200 BP. They do not require workers and can be moved by freighters. They have a transport size equal to 10 factories. Essentially, they are a cut-down version of a spaceport intended to facilitate ordnance transfer in forward areas, transferring ordnance between the surface of a planet and ships in orbit. They have no bonuses for loading or unloading cargo.

An Ordnance Transfer Hub can be mounted on a ship. It is a commercial system with a research cost of 10,000 RP, build cost of 2400 BP and a size of 100,000 tons. In practical terms, this is likely to form part of a large, deep-space station, due to the size and cost, rather than being deployed on ammunition colliers that will accompany fleets.

A Ordnance Transfer System is 500 tons and has a cost ranging from 20 BP to 200 BP, depending on the tech level. A ship with an Ordnance Transfer System can transfer ordnance to or from a single ship at once, so it will take some time to replenish a whole fleet, although this will improve with higher technology. At the early tech levels, the Ordnance Transfer System can only be used if both ships (collier and target ship) are both stationary. Underway Replenishment allows the transfer to take place while both ships are in the same fleet and underway. Priorities can be set for the ordnance transfer order when multiple ships are involved. The first Underway Replenishment tech allows ordnance transfer at 20% of the normal rate (2500 RP), rising to 100% with the highest tech (40,000 RP).

Ordnance transfer order types will be adjusted to deal with the new requirements (which I will list in a separate post). Ordnance will be transferred during each movement increment as time passes until the target ship has full magazines.

13
Aurora Bugs / Re: Official v7.10 Bugs Reporting Thread
« on: September 17, 2017, 05:29:51 AM »
This is very annoying, this is the third time in 4 weeks I get this error, all on new game installments, even on different hard drives... I am beginning to think its my computer, if that's even possible...

It sounds like the problem can't find the row in the Game table in the database that relates to the game. That's a major problem but also very unusual. Are you sure the Aurora.exe and Stevefire.mdb files are from the same install version?

14
I have never seen this bug before, I have no idea what Natural Reader is and Aurora will never try to access the internet for anything.

It sounds like something else on your PC is causing this. May not be harmful but I think you should do an immediate virus scan.

15
C# Aurora / Re: C# Aurora Changes Discussion
« on: September 14, 2017, 02:50:23 PM »
Automation through scripting:

I was wondering if in C# there is a way to expand the way in which commands are given to fleets. Especially around automation of routine jobs. For example:
I have three fleets. Two contain a bunch of sorium harvesters, one over Jupiter, one over Saturn. The third fleet is one single fuel tanker.

The tanker fleet should be able to generate a move command to one of the two fleets, if the fleet has X amount of fuel harvested. It then should unload the fuel to a specified target (for example Earth) and wait there until one of the harvester fleets again is full and then generate the next unload cycle.

Could probably be done through a couple of extra conditional orders.

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 430