Author Topic: Jump Drive mechanics  (Read 6734 times)

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Offline 3_14159

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #30 on: December 06, 2011, 05:10:14 AM »
Following this (and the other Newtonian Aurora-Posts) for quite a while, I'd like to throw a partly-stolen idea in.

1.  Drive Flare
As proposed by Heph at the first page, I'd like to see a flare at departure, propagating faster-than-vessel onto the target system.  However, I'd like to have it additionally  to the in-system-flare.  Therefore, you'd have two flares: The first one arrives before the ships (let's say at double the speed) and tells you "a vessel with a jump drive this capable is coming", and the second one from the arrival, which tells you where exactly the ship/squadron emerged.
The multiplier could then be used to reduce both of the flares, with the departure-flare reduced most.  Therefore, the "civilian"-used drives would create a departure-flare which could be detected even by a fairly normal-sized EM-sensor, while a "military"-used drive's departure-flare could only be seen by an extensive deep-space-tracking-system.  Of course, the departure-flare would be reduced as a normal signature by distance, giving you an interesting decision: Do you want to be seen surely, however arriving shortly after? Jump to a nearby system, and then towards your target.  Do you want to avoid (probably) being seen until you're in the system, but your fleet may be on it's way for a month or so, without any possibility to abort?

2.  Accuracy
Also already proposed by a variety of people, my idea would be the following:
The accuracy can be changed, and changes the multiplier.  As it's already said, jumping in an unsurveyed system isn't very accurate, and even jumping into a surveyed one isn't perfectly accurate.  Simply introduce a multiplier into that, so that the "civilian"-grade drives aren't gonna hit anything, but can bring much bigger payloads.
And, additionally, why not introduce a "Jump Buoy"? I'd like to see it as a (civilian) component, so that you could build one station per system, which gives ships the option to jump to that station, and arrive at a great accuracy.  The "signal" this station sends off can be said to by encrypted, therefore only giving you and your allies access.
You could even build a jump capable jump buoy ship (although I'd make that system quite big, this being more of a late-game-technique), which jumps in first, and then directs everybody much, much closer.
As an alternative, the proposed "slingshot" gates.  Each one can only be targeted at one other, but allows ships without jump drive to jump to that target system.  The problem could be that the departure-flare is readable even with standard-size EM-Sensors, making it quite unsuitable for military assaults.
 

Offline procyon

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #31 on: December 06, 2011, 05:38:48 AM »
Just to throw in my two cents.

I think it would be a 'neat' dynamic to allow jumps only from surveyed systems.  Going to a surveyed system will be fairly accurate.  The jump to one you haven't surveyed is pretty inaccurate.  But you can't synchronize the drive for a jump from an unsurveyed system.

It would make the survey much more important.
You also wouldn't lead with pure warships. They might never get home.

For the defenders, hunting down the survey ships takes on a huge meaning.  If you can keep the 'alien' race from surveying the system then the 'alien' will be faced with a choice.  Jump in more supply ships and survey ships, or cut the loses and let the ships there 'die on the vine.'

For the traveller, it is a real conundrum.  Send escorts to hopefully protect them and burn resources doing so.  Or don't, and hope no one is there to meet them.

(In an RP setting it would be great.  Home may not realize for months after that something happened to the survey ships at all.  Until they failed to return.  Do you send more ships to attempt a rescue when you don't know what happened.  It could be real fun in a community game where the SM runs it and the player really doesn't know what happened....)
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Offline JimiD

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #32 on: December 06, 2011, 08:02:34 AM »
I would like to encourage the investigation of the design and effects distiguishing between Commercial and Military:

- Size of jump group.  Allow smaller groups to be selected in the design tool, even if larger groups have been researched.  This would allow for a drive design that can support 7 small ships, or a cheaper drive that can jump a single (larger?) ship.  I could imagine giving all of my colony and frieghters individual jump drives as I dont want to manage them as groups, but using groups for military where I want to maximise speed, armour and ordinance in the non jump drive ships.

- Size of jump flare.  If this formed part of the design tool, then cheaper drives can have large flares.

- Duration of sensor blindness.  Cheaper drives have longer sensor blindness.

- Accuracy of jump drive.  Cheaper drives have worse accuracy.  Perhaps when jumping to any system, even an unsurveyed one, we can chose a target position to jump to with polar co-ordinates: distance from main star and orientation.  Then the accuracy can come into play as another design parameter to distinguish commercial from military.  Although I suspect it might interesting to make it so that it is not always  cost effective to always have the most accurate drives in terms of delta-V.  Commercial freighters might accept a poor accuracy and carry more fuel to make course corrections, whereas military ships might want to optimise their attacking jump positions.  A frieghter might want a low initial velocity prior to jump, but high Jump Drive multiplier, so that it arrives in system with low speed to minimise course correction if it is facing away from its destination.   Orientation and distance from star could be seperate accuracy variables, as you might not mind which orientation you are in, as long as you are in the centre of the system?
 

Offline byron

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #33 on: December 06, 2011, 10:07:59 AM »
I'm not so sure I like the idea of a departure flare.  For one thing, I don't like the idea of the attackers knowing a long time ahead that something is coming.  A few hours warning, at most, might make sense.  Secondly, it doesn't help that much.  Yes, something is coming there.  But how far away is it coming from, and when will it be here?
I also don't like the "no jump out without survey" idea.  I can see lack of survey slowing you down a lot (10x sounds about right), but not stopping you completely.
One thing that might be nice is an "own jump only" drive.  A lot of ships don't travel in groups, and while it might be useless for military operations, it might help with things like couriers.  A size/cost of around .75 is what I would recommend.
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Offline UnLimiTeD

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #34 on: December 06, 2011, 10:13:14 AM »
Did anyone play Freespace?
A race of ancient destroyers that track races by their use of "Subspace", and can just vanish into that medium in system and appear somewhere else?^^

As for research, if civ's get less tech, there certainly should be a small random chance of them developing their own.^^
 

Offline Yonder

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #35 on: December 06, 2011, 03:31:27 PM »
If a distinction between military and civilian jump drives most be made, maybe a "Military" jump drive has the ability to safely jump to systems that have not been surveyed yet (or at least visited) and "Commercial" jump drives do not.
 

Offline UnLimiTeD

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #36 on: December 07, 2011, 03:42:36 AM »
No distinction should be made, it's the design parameters of size and cost efficiency that should dictate it.
Mabye including a slider of how reliable it needs to be, in turn increasing the chance of unforeseen breakdowns.

I like the idea of hindrance of jumping from non-surveyed systems.
Essentially, one could use the same parameters as jumping to them, again; maybe with a time penalty.

So, if you jump from an unsurveyed system, you have less total range (assuming the failure chance suggested here), by being up to 30% slower (shouldn't be allowed to be faster in this case), with additional time cost to charge jump drives.
Maybe even a small inaccuracy of, say, a few degrees, so if you jump so far that theres multiple systems in  that angle, within a few LY of the target, you might end up in the wrong system.
Hopefully got some fuel left^^
 

Offline Antagonist

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #37 on: December 07, 2011, 04:01:22 AM »
I also agree with the removal of Civ and Mil Jump Drive distinction.  In fact I'd like a removal of that distinction for engines as well, modelled perhaps with a power/reliability/size/fuel efficiency tradeoff, with slow and very reliable and efficient engines being larger and not need any maintenance supplies and doesn't age while smaller and more powerful engines needing more maintenance supplies.  Missiles being a logical extreme of this, being unserviceable but that being okay since its single-use anyway.

Whether a ship will age will depend on it being below the maintenance limit for engines and any weapons or other military equipment.  Similiar maint limits will exist for sensors and shields that is a tech level or two below current allowing you to equip civ ships with actual sensors and defenses, even if they are a tad older.  Or maybe a civ spec check mark you can tick that allows almost any item cept weapons to be zero-maint at the cost of tonnage and maybe reduced effectiveness?  With Anarchy or military based civilizations, perhaps even civ-spec weapons for your transports?

Potentially this allows some reduced maint mil-spec ships, like tankers with zero-maint engines, but top of the line armor, shields and CIWS, so it will age but less dramatically.


On the flip-side, this increases the computation that needs to be done if any ship has a potential maintenance timer.  One of the reasons given for zero-maint civilians is the processing cost.
 

Offline UnLimiTeD

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #38 on: December 07, 2011, 04:49:34 AM »
They could just be checked in 30 day intervals, for weapons components and the like, and have anything every ship needs, like life support, but including engines, just slowly use up a small amount of maintenance.
That should reduce the load.
 

Offline chrislocke2000

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #39 on: December 07, 2011, 07:18:55 AM »
I also agree with the removal of Civ and Mil Jump Drive distinction.  In fact I'd like a removal of that distinction for engines as well,

Steve has already removed the distinction of civ and military engines, clasification of a ship as a civilian will, I believe, now just be dependent on the types of other modules you stick on it.

Thinking a bit more about in system jumps I guess you would need to make these fairly limited to stop people just jumping away from incoming missiles etc. Couple of thoughts on this:
- As discussed previously give the jump engines a spooling up requirement. I thought this could be done the same way as lasers etc are dealt with. Give the engine a whopping big power requirement for use and then require the jump ship to run generators to charge it up. The energy requirement should be substantially more than weapons so its not feasible to store this in homopoloar (spelling??) reserves and would be in the order of hours to charge. You could also make it a "use it or loose it" approach so ships can't just leave their jump engines spooled up - too much energy to contain (hey your are ripping your way into another dimension aren't you!), so once you hit spool up you are committed to the jump or you risk explosive damage to the ship as you try to dump the engergy build up.
- Secondly you could perhaps give a minimum time in hyperspace to give a minimum jump distance so you can't make small precise jumps to easily get into position of an enemy fleet

Regarding the deep range attacks, I would also think a range limit on jump distance would be a good thing to have as then requires a bit more island hoping and could leave some systems as strategic points if they are stepping stones into other areas of the galaxy. I think just an extension of the jump in variation would achieve this. Ie up to a certain distance no additional variation (based on a researchable tech level) then exponetially increasing errors after that with a corresponding risk of "missing" the target and getting lost in hyperspace or just being so off track and direction when landing you will burn your fuel up without being able to achieve the mission. - I like the idea of sending ships "beyond the red line" in an emergency!

Finally I would add my disagreement to the idea of a jump signal that warns you of incomming ships but I do like the idea of perhaps a reseachable tech - based on recovery of components from say invaders that does allow detection of ships in hyperspace to a limited range and without identifying whgoose ships and type etc they actually are.
 

Offline PTTG

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #40 on: December 07, 2011, 09:57:16 AM »
Honestly, hyperspace sensors sound like a great idea. You could even make them planetside-only (perhaps ships in hyperspace produce a bow wave of neutrinos, and the best way to detect that is a massive shielded tank of water deep underground), so you can relatively easily get a warning before ships arrive in systems you securely control, but your fleets may be susceptible to ambush.

Naturally, smaller, more efficient jump drives produce smaller waves which can be far more difficult to detect.
 

Offline GeaXle

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #41 on: December 07, 2011, 11:33:39 AM »
I like the charging time stuff before jumping from Antagonist.

I posted a beacon idea on the Island Hopping thread for the long deep jumps.

 

Offline procyon

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #42 on: December 07, 2011, 07:48:48 PM »
Thinking a bit more about in system jumps I guess you would need to make these fairly limited to stop people just jumping away from incoming missiles etc.

I had intentionally not mentioned that.  So much for my strategy to universal dominion.... :P

I had really liked the idea of 'jump-fighters' that would move at the last minute away from incoming ordinance and then reappear beside the target to rain rail gun projectiles on it.

Oh well.  Back to the drawing board..... :)
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Offline UnLimiTeD

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #43 on: December 08, 2011, 04:46:59 AM »
What I would really like is an In-system Hyperdrive like we currently have in normal Aurora; A system that boosts the movement speed at the cost of acceleration and ship Functions.
Sure, you could theoretically just jump into the system you come from, and then appear somewhere else. but whats the point?

The following is basically my noteblock for developing that idea, and no, I do NOT expect anything like this to go in, it's contradictive to what Steve is trying to achieve.
Now that I wrote it down, it actually looks pretty smegty. I'll work on it.

Example:

Tech Lines:
  • Hyper-Thrusters (requires Hyperjump tech of equal level, Level 8 max)
  • Size Efficiency
  • Charge up Time

Working Mechanic:
Acceleration/2+LvL , Speed is multiplied by 1+0.5*LvL
This is under the assumption that the speed gain is immediately multiplied, so on level 8, it'd be 10% acceleration, but the gain is immediately multiplied by 5, resulting in 50% acceleration.
10% of the increased speed is emitted as EM signature, or Hyper-signature if that kind of sensor exists, and no firing or sensor use is possible while boosting.

The size formula could be [(Ship Size/200)^1.2]*20
This means:
200 ton ship = 20 ton (10%)
500 ton ship = 60 tons (12%)
1250 ton ship = 180 tons (14.4%)
5000 ton ship = 952 tons
20000 ton ship = 5024 tons

As you can see, this system penalizes large ships, a Thruster array is not worth it above 10k tons as the system eats up above 20% of the ships total displacement.

The Size Efficiency Tech line would decrease the system size by 5% for each level, while the Thruster level will increase it by an equal amount; the latter tech is obviously more expensive and has less total levels.
Size efficiency would also increase the cost by 10%/ton/level, but as the size decreases this is counteracted.

So, the final size formula could be:

{[(Ship Size/200)^(1.2-S-lvl/200)]*(20-S-lvl)}*(0.95+Hpr-lvl/20)

As such, a size efficiency 4 lvl 3 Hyper Thruster for a 500 ton ship would be 52 Tons, and for a 20k ton Ship it's be 4032 tons.
As you can see, on higher levels, it will become more efficient for Bigger units.
If you build a thruster with level 2, size level 7, a 20k ton ship would have it below 3000 tons,
and at level 10 size, a 50k ton battlecruiser with a 2x speed thruster would only require 6009 tons for the thruster, roughly as much % wise as a 500 ton ship without size efficiency.

Charge Time
Charge time would be 2*(sqrt(Ship Size)/Charge-lvl)+5



An alternative would be to increase the charge time and decrease the effect on larger ships, instead of making the system prohibitively large.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2011, 05:59:23 PM by UnLimiTeD »
 

Offline byron

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Re: Jump Drive mechanics
« Reply #44 on: December 08, 2011, 01:40:29 PM »
Interesting idea, but pure handwavium.  For one thing, your system has ships possibly exceeding C.  Steve altered the engines to avoid exhaust velocities above C.  Also, how does this interact with missiles?  What if you used this to get up to a really high speed and launched?
I don't see it as a good idea.  Hyperdrives are nice in current Aurora, but this isn't current Aurora.
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