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Topics - MarcAFK

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1
Aurora / Birth of the federation
« on: June 25, 2016, 02:06:46 PM »
Note that much of what follows is slightly non-canonical StarTrek, but why should J.J.Abrams get all the fun of messing with the timeline.

Part 1: Prologue
In the early 21st century earth was ravished by war, a short brutal conflict waged with vintage but no less effective nuclear weapons, it was over swiftly, not through a triumph of rational minds, but rather as the chaos and destruction reaped was so wholesale that none of the sophisticated command and control infrastructure was left intact enough to continue the slaughter. 600 million people were lost in the initial conflict, but the decade long weather disruption caused crop failure and famine, which caused billions to be lost as the world slowly and literally degenerated into a dark age.
No government survived as the complex logistics needed to rule from afar was shattered, eventually all redoubts of command crumbled under internal pressure as food and material shortages tore apart the last vestiges of the old order , all reduced to tiny fiefdoms squabbling over meagre resources and the toxic irradiated landscape. Working technology became scarce and coveted as an entire generation grew up in the wasteland struggling with whatever could be made to work. Some groups managed to organise into communities with working electricity, education and electricity, becoming prime targets of warlords who scoured the hellscape for weapons and fresh recruits.
Deep within the ashes of the past however remained the remnants of the lost golden age, including the instruments of
the recent apocalypse. In one community living amongst the ruins of an old military base a brilliant man named Zephram Cochrane dared to dream of something greater, himself a relic of the old world he was once considered a lunatic for the outlandish ideas and dubious mathematical theorems he promoted, before the war he couldn't gain access to sophisticated research equipment, but was still able to gather relevent information as it was published.
Off-Topic: show

After the war he became a privateer of sorts using his knowledge of pre-war technology to trade for protection from the local warlords, while enriching his own position and continuing his research into exotic physics, eventually making the discovery which made him famous; Warp Travel.
During the eventful voyage he attracted the attention of a passing alien vessel, an envoy named Soval emerged from the ship and offered guidance and technological advancement, in return for the solemn promise that the newly discovered technology would be used peacefully and for the betterment of all mankind.
Now hailed as a hero, but reluctantly as Cochrane never forgave himself for the selfish manner in which he stayed alive after the war.
That was almost a century ago, and returning from the brink of extinction under the watchful gaze of Vulcan ambassador Soval humanity has once again achieved all manner of advancement, social, educational, medical, and technological.
Off-Topic: show

The nascent martian colonies are thriving, and the charismatic CEO of the company which started the new commercial space race steps down in order to run as the first United Earth president, an office he wins in a landslide.
Off-Topic: show

After decades of research and exhausting study the first Warp Powered starship is finally commissioned, the sleek and terrifyingly powerful NX-01 enterprise which shall be commanded by the inexperienced captain Jonathan Archer, the first Starfleet officer to command a vessel outside the solar system, hopefully a journey that will be productive and enlightening.
Off-Topic: show

His crew include a Vulcan officer, a concession to ambassador Soval who still believes we are unready to venture into the unknown, but ultimately that decision is up to us alone.
Now humanity takes it's great leap into the final frontier, to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and civilisations, our mission? To boldly go where no-one has gone before.
End log. January 1st 2150 : 23:57
-Captain Jonathan Archer; commanding officer starship Enterprise

2
Forum Issues / Forum display issue.
« on: June 03, 2016, 12:52:59 AM »
I'm seeing an odd display issue in my phone, I can't screenshot it right now but what's happening is various images of the forum interface is corrupted. The top blue area with the aurora logo and where it says simple machines forum has a line of smileys going across the screen. The bar which says "Welcome Marc AFK" is now composed of images of the enterprise, IE sematary's avatar. And there's a few other oddities. I hope this isn't the curse of the wiki coming back.
Anyone else seeing this on their browser?

3
Aurora / The man who would become god.
« on: January 03, 2016, 07:58:43 PM »
The age of strife.
In ages past mankind spread to the stars, countless worlds across the galaxy were founded by a humanity yearning to discover all that is to be known.
This was the golden age of technology which started in the 15th millennium, where exotic technology was found which could alter space itself allowing access to the Immaterium, ships could warp between worlds in the blink of an eye allowing humanity to band together in a united human confederation centered on the homeworld of Terra.
The preceding great Exodus had slowly colonized the solar system with conventional technology, new advances accelerated this beyond belief, by the height of it's power humanity was a hundred trillion living in thousands of idyllic worlds across the confederation.
But unchecked progress would lead to humanity's downfall as it lost sight of god, spawning abominations such as men of iron which would turn against their creators, Old Earth's once unified planetary government completely broke down as techno-barbarian warlords and their gene-enhanced warrior-hordes used the advances of the past as weapons, continuously fighting over the planet, which became little more than a massive battleground for their apocalyptic wars of attrition over the course of the age of strife.   
Little remained of the once sophisticated civilisation of Old Earth's glorious past as it was divided into dozens of warring techno-barbarian nations.Continuous warfare raged across the surface of Terra for two and a half thousand years, beginning in the late 27th Millennium. The history of the preceding 10 millenium was lost , becoming known as a great dark age along with innumerable dead.
But then as chaotic warp storms sealed off the Immaterium from mankind, enlightened people known as psykers started appearing, at first mistrusted and persecuted these men touched by god were eventually seen as salvation from the darkness which gripped the galaxy. Many were martyred bringing the word to us, but the greatest of them all would lead us to salvation.

The unification wars.
Emerging from the battered post-apocalyptic wasteland the Emperor of mankind finally revealed himself, during the darkest period of earth's history against this backdrop of oppression, violence and casual brutality he proclaimed the Imperial Truth of progress and reason and that he would forge an Imperium of Man dedicated to the reunification of mankind.The Emperor declared that Mankind would never be free to progress and advance to its destined position as the pre-eminent intelligent species in the Milky Way Galaxy until "the last stone from the last church was cast down onto the last priest."  Planning for this moment in history for millennia, the emperor had created a massive army of genetically-enhanced thunder warriors which would soon cleanse the world of all the fractured states and corrupted religions. Eventually conquring all of earth he set his holy sight upon the ancient forge world of mars where the Mechanicus acknowledged the Emperor of Mankind as the ruler of the Imperium of Man. The treaty of mars would forever align the mechanicus as a possession of the imperium, in return the priests of the Cult Mechanicus were allowed freedom from persecution and autonomy. As earth was a devastated barely post-industrial wasteland the Emperor knew that securing the technology and industry of the mechanicum was essential for the provision of technical aid and construction of massive fleets necessary for the Imperium of Man to launch the Great Crusade across the stars.

The great crusade

There was however a single world in the solar system who still resists the imperium.The cult of Selenar had ruled luna for millenia and along with the armies of earth and mars had participated in the three way struggle for power during the age of strife. Luna possessed unsurpassed genetic technology and indeed the emperor's thunder warriors were developed with selenar assistance millenia before the Unification wars had begin. The looming great crusade required lunas vast gene-engineering facilities and biological technology for the creation of soldiers to reconquer the galaxy. But the Selenar gene-cults would not bow willingly to the hunger of the new-born Imperium, and had fought off the machinations of Terran warlords and Martian Magi in the past. The final Imperial deputation to Luna was returned to Terra as a still-screaming soup of fused liquescent flesh in the dead shell of their shuttle. So it was that the Emperor finally ordered Luna to be pacified by the sword, their superstitious beliefs cast down before the Imperial Truth and their gene-craft yoked to the needs of the Imperium.

In this year of the 30th millenium the chronicles of the great crusade shall start, though these events are from a past long before the 41st millenium I find myself in, I shall do my very best to provide an accurate account of the actions of his most holy, the god emperor, may he watch over us eternally upon his golden throne.
-Confessor Janus Mentior

4
Graphics Packs / New Planet Images
« on: December 06, 2015, 11:06:08 AM »
Here's something I threw together because I was sick of seeing multiple copies of Jupiter, but missed having the correct images in my last game where I used Tarran's image pack which did away with them entirely.
Note that Aurora doesn't really handle planet images in Sol very well, by default mars and Titan share an image, and several large planets use images which should be asteroids or chunks, so no matter what you do with default images you'll find various planets in sol will become incorrect.
The solution I've decided upon is to remove all of the solar systems planets from the default planetjpeg folder, this way only new planets will be randomly generated for the galaxy which prevents suspension of disbelief due to seeing jupiter or something in a random alien system.
Of course you probably want to have the correct images available for bodies in our solar system, so they are in a separate package.
A few points about the way aurora handles the planetjpeg folder.
For random selection aurora only uses the following images.
Ast.jpg, a1-a10.jpg, b1-b19.jpg, h1-h3.jpg, ha1-ha6.jpg, gg1-gg10.jpg, m1-m23.jpg and o1-o7.jpg. Images after these won't be selected randomly, however they can be used manually.
Aurora only recognizes the final 3 characters of a planet image filename, so for instance if you select gg11.jpg aurora will search for g11.jpg and throw an error if it doesn't exist. The package contains an extra copy of this and gg10 in order to get around this.
The second package contains every major body in the solar system, they have been given their correct name in order to make it easy to find the desired image, however an extra copy of each planet is needed to get around the 3 character limitation.
The third package contains extra 'bonus' bodies which can be manually choosen if desired.
And finally the Jumbo package contains every image.

5
As referenced here: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=7958.0
and here: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=7798.msg81847#msg81847
Below I will attempt to pinpoint what caused the problem in the earlier post I failed to make. 
Edit: once again I get forbidden when trying the entire thing.

Here it is split in 2:

6
Installation / Adding more ship names
« on: October 04, 2015, 08:54:30 PM »
I'm going to post this here because I suppose it's related to installing.
I've been building custom name files for ships, I'll post them here for anyone who's interested, also as a reference for anyone who's having trouble installing new names, or even new users who don't even know this function exists.

New ship name lists are added in the following way, create a file called "ShipNames.txt" in the Aurora installation folder, then in that file each line will be the name of a ship in the class you will define, ensure there are no blank lines or you'll get an error.
Under the main Aurora menu under 'game' select 'add ship names', Type out the name you want this ship theme to show up as.
The window will lag for a few seconds, then to use the new names select the 'DAC/Rank/info' option under class design, then under 'name type' theres a list of all the ship name themes installed, whatever you select will be used for new ships of that class, going down the list in order. 
After 3 years playing Aurora I've only just discovered this myself :p

Lists I've created so far.
Hydrocarbons 60 Names; For tankers
Heavy Metal 52 Metal Bands mostly from the 70's, Alphabetical order and 2 of each letter; Freighters or Warships

7
Forum Issues / 403 Forbidden
« on: October 04, 2015, 08:14:29 AM »
I'm getting the following while trying to post in this thread http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=7956.0
" Forbidden

You don't have permission to access /index.php on this server. "

Edit: it's worse than that, I managed to post the word test, then later edit the post , but it's giving me the error when I post a paragraph.
I think we have forbidden words again :(

8
Forum Issues / Whats the deal with the lines under the thread titles?
« on: September 28, 2015, 07:32:05 AM »
I thought it might be something like how much of a thread I've read but that doesn't seem to be the case, it's a mystery.

9
Forum Issues / Some of steve's oldest fiction posts are cut off.
« on: June 20, 2015, 01:50:16 AM »
The current lapse in new fiction has led me to trawl through the earliest posts in the forum, Sadly most of Steves posts from the Nemesis and Cataclysm Campaigns are incomplete, sometimes consisting of a single line of text which cuts out, Is there any remote chance that there might be backups from 2006 buried somewhere?
Perhaps there's a chance Seve might have notes of those games somewhere but I'm sure it's a longshot.
I'm sure I'm not the only one who finds the earliest posts in the forum intriguing, seeing how the game has developed and how new features have been dealt with in fiction, for instance I was surprised to see how changes from the expected Newtonian aurora ended up in versions 5 or 6, particularly engine and fuel changes, I read through those posts years before registering to the forum but had forgotten all about it.
I've also noticed a few of the earliest posts show the subforum name but not the actual thread's name, when you go through Steve's post history, but the quote button still displays the actual location of the thread. Not an issue really.

10
Detailing his quest to discover what makes a planet habitable; Sean Raymond of Bordeaux observatory utilizes a binary system, gas giants, leading and following trojans and binary planets in order to cram 60 potentially habitable worlds into the goldilocks zone.
http://planetplanet.net/2013/06/11/build-a-better-solar-system/
Part 2 starts here:
http://planetplanet.net/2014/05/13/building-the-ultimate-solar-system/

Does this absurdity remind anyone of aurora? :p
As an aside I read somewhere that it's possible that milky way holds at least 15-30 billion terrestrial planets...

11
Aurora / The Terran Federation: A hopefully short AAR
« on: January 15, 2014, 10:32:50 PM »
This one will be a short, fiction light, completely by the numbers AAR, just to keep my apatite whet during slow periods of my other RP heavy game.
Settings are mostly default hence the name, except difficulty is set to 150%, 2 starting NPRs, NPR generation chance 0%, maximum number of systems of 9, gates on all jump points, and predesigned tech, systems, and ships, oh and also I like my asteroids to orbit dammit.

12
Aurora / Black ships and gunboat diplomacy
« on: December 10, 2013, 01:26:20 AM »
Prologue: December 21st 1968

Human spaceflight was in it's infancy, December 21st 1968 and the Apollo 8 mission was launched to orbit the moon and return it's crew of 3 safely to the earth, the event marked what would be a milestone for humanity, more so than merely the technical achievement that everybody was expecting.
3 days after launch the craft finally achieved orbit on christmas eve, it was expected to spend the next day orbiting the moon 9 times before modifying it's trajectory back towards the earth, NASA were eager for this christmas gift to finally show the Russians that they weren't the ones in the lead of the space race any longer.
The crew prepare a special message for earth, a reading from genesis to signify how rich with life the earth is compared to the vast desolate waste of the moon.
Nearing the dark side crew command module pilot Jim Lovell checks their position using visible stars as landmarks, when he notices another piece of debris glinting in the sunlight far in the distance, the crew were getting used to these 'UFO's" as the flight progressed as pieces of seperated lower stages had a tendency to stay on a similar path to the manned vessel, perhaps this piece had been captured by the moon, future missions might need to identify and avoid these potentially hazardous objects. The rest of the crew crowd over to the small viewport, for a glimpse of the exotic object breaks up the monotony of the last several hours mostly spent waiting to complete the orbits.
Suddenly a blindingly bright flash erupts through the viewports of the other end of the craft, the crew feel the heat before they register the flash.
"What in god's name was that?" Commander Frank Borman exclaims? As each person looks immediately towards the offending end of the craft warning alarms start to register around the consoles in the command module. Lunar module pilot Fred Anders offers "Explosion? Did we lose an oxygen tank?"
Mission control erupts from the radio" CM103 come in. Commander Borman come in, telemetry is detecting every damn error message you have going off. Borman asks pilot Anders to answer CAPCOMs query as he tries to find the problem.
"Uh mission control, we have all kinds of smeg going on in here, everythings beeping and the commander can't find anything actually wrong".
Despite the chaos inside the craft Commander Borman checks and resets the alarms. "CAPCOM, Nothing appears to be damaged, every system is nominal and fails to trigger after the reset, all pressure gauges and voltages are as expected, I have no idea what caused that explosion" Lovell looks out the window where the explosion was noticed and sees something throughly unexpected, two large pieces of debris which appear to be burning far off in the distance, orbiting the moon."What the hell? Did the Russians launch something to spy on us?" He exclaims.
"What explosion commander?" query NASA ground control flight directror Glynn Lunney.
Before anyone can answer several flashes erupt in quick succession from one of the objects outside the window, Lovell continues to spy on the object as it starts to disintegrate and lose faintly orange glowing pieces.  The entire crew look out the craft in amazement as they become the first human witnesses to laser weapons being used offensively. Commander Borman returns to the radio to inform NASA of the developments, soon however more flashes erupt from the objects outside the window and eventually a massive nuclear explosion erupts from outside, destroying one of the craft. Crew inside Apollo 8 are blinded, confused and throughly panicked as this experience is nothing they trained for or expected.  As commander Bormans position was shielded from the blast by the engines, fuel and other equipment further down the ship his positionhe eventually manages to see through the haze and recovers enough to once again pick up the radio and report back.
Lovell is lying passed out beside the window with severe burns to exposed skin, his eyes bleeding and presumably useless. Pilot William Anders rushes down to help him and becomes witness to the alien ship powering up it's engines and changing course to meet them. He ignores this and concentrates on his wounded comerade. "Bill, get away from the frakking window, that was a nuclear explosion you need to get your ass to the RCS and change our position so our spent rocket motor is between us and any more radiation".
The next few hours are tense aboard the craft as commander Borman answers questions from air force officers who arrive at CAPCOM, and Anders tends to the shivering Jim Lovell. The craft is redirected back to earth orbit with a final burn and the alien craft was mostly forgotten, untill just as final earth rise was occuring the craft reappears only a few meters from Apollo 8. The ship was jet black, almost impossible to see in the deep of space except during the fight when it became a brilliant white during the reactor explosion, it's features were unremarkable yet totally alien, no apparent rocket motors were visible nor were antennas, windows, weapons or anything identifiable, yet the surface was irregular, covered in random looking shapes and textures, the craft wasn't even symmetrical or regularly shaped, it might as well have been an asteroid except for the obvious propulsion system emitting heat and light from the rear end, and it's obviously intelligent control which placed it into a parallel course so close to the human craft.
The radio suddenly cut off one of the military brass who had hijacked it from Huston declaring angrily in some alien tongue "ffsssssrrmrfl fusrbah, zzzzzz", the outburst almost lost in the residual electronic noise from the battle, before long the ship broke off and vanished into deep space. The wreck of the other craft remained in high unstable lunar orbit. Already back home plans were being drawn up to recover it, while a new secret cold war was about to start, a race for alien secrets.

13
Branching this off from Plasma carronades - who uses them? as the post was becoming more of a tactical discussion.

2 opposing fleets have been setup in alpha centauri, each one has a single Cornwallis class ship, one carronade variant, one 10cm infra red laser variant, also in each fleet is an observer to allow firing after damage to active sensors in the test vessels, the observer is as follows:
Code: [Select]
Observer class Fast Scout    2,900 tons     78 Crew     546 BP      TCS 58  TH 306  EM 0
5275 km/s     Armour 2-18     Shields 0-0     Sensors 1/36/0/0     Damage Control Rating 2     PPV 0
Maint Life 3.72 Years     MSP 235    AFR 33%    IFR 0.5%    1YR 27    5YR 398    Max Repair 153 MSP
Intended Deployment Time: 3 months    Spare Berths 1   

306 EP Ion Drive x1.5 (1)    Power 306    Fuel Use 182.98%    Signature 306    Exp 15%
Fuel Capacity 500,000 Litres    Range 17.0 billion km   (37 days at full power)

Active Search Sensor MR5-R1 (1)     GPS 96     Range 5.8m km    MCR 627k km    Resolution 1
Active Search Sensor MR62-R86 (1)     GPS 9632     Range 62.3m km    Resolution 86
EM Detection Sensor EM6-36 (1)     Sensitivity 36     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  36m km

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes
[/spoiler]
The design is barely useful for scouting, but has been given the best available sensors already in service with my fleet.

After setting up a new empire named "test drone" in alpha centauri III and giving it the laser fleet, the carronade fleet is put into alpha centauri IV 600 million km away, and been given the order to advance to Alpha centauri III, contact is made 340.6 million km away as the strength 36 EM sensor of the observer picks up the resolution 86 active of the opposing observer ship.
Expected behaviour of the enemy is to advance toward our incoming fleet at full speed, after the test drone is observed to do this the fleet is sent to rendezvous with it rather than Alpha centauri III.
Active sensor contact is finally made with the enemy fleet 185 million kilometers out from Alpha centauri III.
As each fleet advances toward each other, thermal contact is finally made at -40 million kilometers.
At -25 million kilometers each cruiser switches it's own active sensors on, as they are now within the range of their own resolution 20 sensors, fleets are now 1 hour away from contact. At their combined speed they will close 30,000 kilometers per 5 second tick. This should have a large bearing on what will finally happen when they reach energy range.
At -5.8 million kilometers to contact fleets are now 14 minutes apart.
At 492,000 kilometers fleets are now 1 minute from contact, at this point i make a backup so I can rerun the scenario as needed.
At -70k kilometers a critical decision must be made, either fire next increment at 35k range, each carronade doing 2 damage at 79% hit chance, then wait a gruelling 25 seconds for recharge, at which point the enemy will reach optimal range for lasers and literally shred the ship to pieces, or wait untill the next increment and suffer one salvo from enemy lasers but produce, full damage, this latter option is decided to be worth the risk.
After movement each ship fires, I'm not particularly sure which ship fired first, it looks like it was the laser variant.
Damage to carronade ship is as follows:
15 armour out of 59
2 Plasma Carronade
1 Active sensor MR25-R20
1 Ion drive
Speed slowed to 2645
Laser Ship:
23 armour of 59
6 reactor
15 laser
7 crew quarters
5 fuel storage
1 thermal sensor
1 fire control S04 24-12000
2 ion drive
1 crew quarters small
1 fire control S04 96-3000
1 Active sensor MR5-R1
Speed slowed to 1763
The remaining firecontrol only has 79% hit chance at 10,000km, and only 58% at 20,000 km, this may be critical.
Sadly initial salvo wasn't enough to completely cripple the laser ship, but the speed difference would allow the carronade ship to stay out of range of the laser one, IF it can survive long enough.
The carronade fleet is ordered back to Alpha Centauri in an attempt to increase range between enemy fleet and itself.
Next increment:
A mistake is made in fire control assignment, and most lasers fail to fire as they wait for reactor power to recharge a few lasers.
Increment 3:
Laser drone still fails to fire:
Increment 4: Still fails to fire: I'm not sure why, all lasers are recharged, assigned to correct fire control, fire control is assigned to the right ship, and the open fire button has been selected.
Increment 5: Carronade ship cleanly finishes off laser ship, laser ship fails to return fire.

Well that was a failure, I'll need to rerun this test when i work out what went wrong.

14
Space News / An atmosphere for the moon?
« on: October 03, 2013, 09:03:12 AM »
A post in the Aurora academy about terraforming the moon or mercury got me thinking about whether a body with such low gravity would even be able to hold onto a thicker atmosphere for long, I found a small yet interesting article by N.M.Hoekzema about the subject, which I'll link here: http://www.mps.mpg.de/homes/hoekzema/katman/nick/work/moonat.htm.
 Basically the solar wind would cause most of the atmospheric loss, however if significant quantities of water was present iron in the lunar surface would rust away the oxygen rather easily.

Also I found a paper published by an N.M.Hoekzema Titled "Small-scale topology of solar atmospheric dynamics" which includes the following in it's abstract : "We find that the largest-flux sites in the granulation have appreciably larger than random probability to co-locate with exceptionally bright chromospheric internetwork grains, at an average delay of about two minutes which is likely to represent sound travel time to the chromosphere. This finding strengthens the case for acoustic grain excitation. "
So I'm willing to believe that he may know something about these subjects.

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