Author Topic: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)  (Read 4252 times)

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Offline TCD

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #60 on: May 23, 2018, 10:08:43 AM »
This difference, by the way, is a reason why, regardless of how the jump gate/jump point thing is done, I'd like to see us being able to use ships to construct stations in space, given that stations look like they'll be quite a bit more important in C#.  Should be fine to call them construction ships no matter how the jump point thing plays out, because if Steve does just rename jump gates to stabilized jump points, I imagine that what we currently call construction ships will be renamed as well, since they wouldn't be building anything.
While I like the idea of construction ships a lot, there are also a lot of practical problems in how to deal with the under-construction stations/ships. Do they physically exist while under construction, and if so can they be targeted? If they can, then how is damage applied. At what point is the armor belt built etc?

The other question is minerals, presumably you'll need a situation where the construction ship has these in cargo bays, but you'd also need to be able to resupply during construction or your construction ships would need to be massive for any large project. So what happens when you run out of minerals part way through construction? Is it just halted indefinitely? Does a halted project consume MSPs, or does the construction progress decrease over time to prevent abuse?
 

Offline the obelisk

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #61 on: May 23, 2018, 10:32:33 AM »
While I like the idea of construction ships a lot, there are also a lot of practical problems in how to deal with the under-construction stations/ships. Do they physically exist while under construction, and if so can they be targeted? If they can, then how is damage applied. At what point is the armor belt built etc?
That's a really good question, and I hadn't thought of that.  I think that ideally, it would be built component by component, probably starting with the armor, but I don't know how feasibly that would be to program.  Maybe if the building process is interrupted, a wreck is spawned in?  I'm not familiar enough with the mechanics of how wrecks work to know how well that could work in relation to the ship being incomplete.  If how damaged a ship is before it's destroyed affects the wreck it leaves behind then maybe it could work?  Again, though, I don't really know how feasible that is.

The other question is minerals, presumably you'll need a situation where the construction ship has these in cargo bays, but you'd also need to be able to resupply during construction or your construction ships would need to be massive for any large project. So what happens when you run out of minerals part way through construction? Is it just halted indefinitely? Does a halted project consume MSPs, or does the construction progress decrease over time to prevent abuse?
I imagine there's a combination of things that could be done here.  Unless I'm mistaken, it seems like it should be possible to have construction ships use minerals from any cargo hold in the task group, so you could just send cargo ships along for the project.  The construction modules used for this might simply be smaller than they are now, with the intention of having your construction ships use cargo bays.  A 180-day Construction module is twice as big as a standard cargo hold, after all, and you can fit a significant amount of minerals into a standard cargo hold.  Also, if you're using the construction ship at a colony with minerals (whether it's a system body or another station), I imagine the ship could use those minerals as well.  Could make setting up terraforming stations a bit easier, since you could just build them on site rather than waiting for what is probably a limited number of tugs to haul them around.

If projects can be halted part way through, then I'd imagine having it consume MSP if it's available, and losing progress if it's not, is a good way to handle it, but I'm no expert at balancing things.
 

Offline TCD

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #62 on: May 23, 2018, 02:04:19 PM »
That's a really good question, and I hadn't thought of that.  I think that ideally, it would be built component by component, probably starting with the armor, but I don't know how feasibly that would be to program.  Maybe if the building process is interrupted, a wreck is spawned in?  I'm not familiar enough with the mechanics of how wrecks work to know how well that could work in relation to the ship being incomplete.  If how damaged a ship is before it's destroyed affects the wreck it leaves behind then maybe it could work?  Again, though, I don't really know how feasible that is.
I guess you could do that, feels odd that some massive 99% complete death star would be wrecked by a single shot, but maybe no other approach is feasible.
I imagine there's a combination of things that could be done here.  Unless I'm mistaken, it seems like it should be possible to have construction ships use minerals from any cargo hold in the task group, so you could just send cargo ships along for the project.  The construction modules used for this might simply be smaller than they are now, with the intention of having your construction ships use cargo bays.  A 180-day Construction module is twice as big as a standard cargo hold, after all, and you can fit a significant amount of minerals into a standard cargo hold.  Also, if you're using the construction ship at a colony with minerals (whether it's a system body or another station), I imagine the ship could use those minerals as well.  Could make setting up terraforming stations a bit easier, since you could just build them on site rather than waiting for what is probably a limited number of tugs to haul them around.
You'd have to be very careful that construction modules don't become cheaper to produce than shipyards, or that would be an obvious exploit.
 

Offline the obelisk

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #63 on: May 23, 2018, 02:35:55 PM »
I guess you could do that, feels odd that some massive 99% complete death star would be wrecked by a single shot, but maybe no other approach is feasible.
I imagine the ship being built isn't being manned during the process.  Undermanning is a thing, so is it possible for a ship to completely run out of crew without being destroyed?  If it is, what happens?  That's probably the best way to figure out what should happen to a partially built station.

You'd have to be very careful that construction modules don't become cheaper to produce than shipyards, or that would be an obvious exploit.
Hadn't thought of that either.  The size limits on shipyards, and potential lack of one for construction ships, presents a bit of a problem.  Solutions I can think of would be 1)make construction ships take significantly longer to build things than shipyards, 2) make construction modules work like maintenance facilities and modules, in that you need a certain amount present to build something based on its size, or 3) make it so that construction ships can't build/refit/repair ships with engines, but instead can only work on engineless stations.  3 seems best to me, because with 1) and 2), the construction ships would still have an advantage in one area due to things like not having to worry about retooling, and with 2 specifically, the fact that construction ships then basically become mobile, modular shipyards.  The lack of retooling could maybe be handled by requiring every single part be prefabbed, but that still leaves the second issue.

EDIT: If this conversation keeps going we should probably split it off into it's own thread, since it's really not about jump gates at this point.
« Last Edit: May 23, 2018, 02:40:26 PM by the obelisk »
 

Offline Jovus

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #64 on: May 23, 2018, 04:00:18 PM »
A fourth option for balance would be that construction ships (or whatever they're to be called) would require more resources to build something than a shipyard would. That way you pay for your flexibility in mobility and not needing to retool with a resource surtax.
 

Offline Barkhorn

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #65 on: May 23, 2018, 04:46:57 PM »
How about just don't allow construction ships to build engines?  That way they can't build ships, and you'll still need shipyards.
 

Offline DocSpit

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #66 on: May 23, 2018, 10:44:32 PM »
Perhaps construction ships could be handled like combat engineers assembling PDCs? The components for the construction would need to be built planet-side, and a construction ship could only assemble them in space?

Conversely(or additionally), perhaps construction ships should need to be tooled at shipyards for specific projects? And that the project they're tooled for has to be done at a shipyard that could have done the construction itself(that way you can't have a 500 ton shipyard tool a construction ship for a 100k ton project).   It makes them more of an extension of a shipyard in that sense: a mobile slipway with the same costs and limits associated with the shipyard, but the advantage of being able to lay down construction at a specific location. 

Though maybe with a construction speed penalty added, to represent a lack of easy access to experts and specialized equipment if(when) problems during construction come up? That way there's at least some incentive to still use shipyards most of the time, and make construction ships only appealing for projects that simply can't be done at a colony. 
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Offline Whitecold

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #67 on: June 07, 2018, 06:00:06 AM »
With the AI now being able to handle jump tenders, there is no real need anymore for an infinite capacity jump gate anymore.
Similarly, with space stations now having "structural shell" as defining characteristic, any options for deep space construction should apply to all space stations, not just exclusively jump gates.
Jump gate then can be a module, designed and researched as part of the jump drive technology branch, with a few changes:
-Jump drive and gate capacity should stack. This allows to build gates and drives for arbitrarily large ships.
- Gates should be cheaper than drives, but can only be used on space stations. Also, the gate does not need to be large enough to jump itself to be operable.
-Larger drives get a capacity bonus, to incentive building large drives instead of many small ones.
- Drives and Gates are no longer purely commercial or military, instead you can trade off capacity, gaining for example +50/+100% civ capacity while loosing -10/-20% mil capacity. That way you can tweak your tenders and gates, either getting a 10k/10k jump drive, or getting a 30k/6k, or a 50k/2k split in capacity.
 

Offline Hazard

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #68 on: June 07, 2018, 09:44:04 AM »
An interesting suggestion Whitecold. The main question would be how do we build them. Yard capacity is a precious resource in Aurora.
 

Offline Seolferwulf

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #69 on: June 07, 2018, 10:50:30 AM »
An interesting suggestion Whitecold. The main question would be how do we build them. Yard capacity is a precious resource in Aurora.

Construction facilities, just like orbital habitats, and then move them using tugs.
Or add a new order for construction ships "construct at point X" with a submenu with all the space stations you have designed.
This would probably need another order to deliver resources to a construction ship.
 

Offline TCD

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #70 on: June 07, 2018, 02:35:20 PM »
An interesting suggestion Whitecold. The main question would be how do we build them. Yard capacity is a precious resource in Aurora.

Construction facilities, just like orbital habitats, and then move them using tugs.
Or add a new order for construction ships "construct at point X" with a submenu with all the space stations you have designed.
This would probably need another order to deliver resources to a construction ship.
Easy enough to say that but I'll refer you to my posts up thread asking all sorts of follow up questions about the practicalities and balance of this. Basically "What do you do with half finished stations?" and "How do you stop players making all their military ships as stations (to avoid construction yard restraints), then tugging them into battle?"
 

Offline the obelisk

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #71 on: June 07, 2018, 02:48:02 PM »
Easy enough to say that but I'll refer you to my posts up thread asking all sorts of follow up questions about the practicalities and balance of this. Basically "What do you do with half finished stations?" and "How do you stop players making all their military ships as stations (to avoid construction yard restraints), then tugging them into battle?"
Structural shells being required for it to count as a proper space station seems like it would limit usability in combat pretty hard.  While I'm not a fan of that myself, even if that were to be changed (for example, having anything without engines be a station, with structural shells being a station-only option), it seems like you'd have to make some pretty hefty tugs to be able to move a station around at anything approaching the speed military ships are generally supposed to be moving at, especially at higher tech levels.
 

Offline Seolferwulf

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #72 on: June 07, 2018, 05:06:06 PM »
An interesting suggestion Whitecold. The main question would be how do we build them. Yard capacity is a precious resource in Aurora.

Construction facilities, just like orbital habitats, and then move them using tugs.
Or add a new order for construction ships "construct at point X" with a submenu with all the space stations you have designed.
This would probably need another order to deliver resources to a construction ship.
Easy enough to say that but I'll refer you to my posts up thread asking all sorts of follow up questions about the practicalities and balance of this. Basically "What do you do with half finished stations?" and "How do you stop players making all their military ships as stations (to avoid construction yard restraints), then tugging them into battle?"

I guess the part about 'half finished stations' is about construction ships construction something in space.
Until it is done it would be a sitting duck and easy to kill.
All its systems and functions would only go online once the construction is done and until then a skeleton crew would be on board supervising the progress.
As the construction advances the stations HTK goes up until it reaches its finished state or turns into firework once it reaches zero (in case someone is firing at it).
Since the station is just a giant construction site it should be easy enough to hit its components so you can assume every hit reduces the HTK.
 

Offline Whitecold

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #73 on: June 08, 2018, 01:01:07 AM »
What to do with construction ships had been split off: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=10082.0

My idea would be to make Jump gates more of a decision you take for high traffic routes. Right now for me pretty much any amount of civilian traffic justifies putting a gate there, as they are free once you have the constructor. I hardly build jump tenders for civilian ships, never mind jump capable freighters, so the only ships with jumpdrives are for combat ships, their fleet train, surveyors
When paying for each gate, and having to emplace them, you would have to think twice if you build gates down a 4-long dead end WP chain for a few miners, or simple equip the freighters with jump drives. Civilians could build a few jump capable colonizers/freighters, leading convoys.
Similarly your initial choice of jump gate capacity is an early decision that will be expensive to change later on. The player then has to deal with his earlier decisions, which I also consider interesting. Do you build extra jump ships to accompany your outsized battleships that no longer fit your gates, or do you refit the gates? Do you refit all of them? You thought you would never need to pass them through that gate and you could save the refit, and now you suddenly do?

 

Offline the obelisk

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #74 on: June 08, 2018, 01:20:19 AM »
I really, REALLY dislike the idea of jump gates having a size restriction.
 
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