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Posted by: Father Tim
« on: October 09, 2018, 01:15:29 PM »

I like the idea of, instead of limiting by focal length, allowing any focal length and having an efficiency that gets better with tech.  In other words, at laser tech 1 you could have a 40 cm laser, but it would be a power hog and very large.  With better tech it would become more power and mass efficient, and have a better range, but you could still have a massive laser at lower tech levels, if that's what you wanted. 

Yeah I think so too. Crude but huge low tech beam weapons would be cool, especially for stuff like railguns!

It would probably require a rework of most beam weapons though for consistency, and I think I would prefer to see any version of C# Aurora released before such a thing happens.

As one who bases almost all my Aurora ships off historical earth vessels, I usually just SM Mode give my conventional-start empire 20 cm tech so my initial steam powered (akak nuclear thermal) ironclad (aka duranium armour) frigate can have its historical smoothbore (focal length 1) muzzle loading (capacitor 1) 68-pounder (208 mm) guns.  I'd love it if sheer size was decoupled from capability and made a variable component for beam weapons, like launcher size for missiles is now.
Posted by: BasileusMaximos
« on: October 09, 2018, 10:01:14 AM »

I'm not trying to argue whether larger beam weapons are better than smaller beam weapons or vice-versa, just that more customizable beam weapons would be a good idea.

I like the idea of, instead of limiting by focal length, allowing any focal length and having an efficiency that gets better with tech.  In other words, at laser tech 1 you could have a 40 cm laser, but it would be a power hog and very large.  With better tech it would become more power and mass efficient, and have a better range, but you could still have a massive laser at lower tech levels, if that's what you wanted. 

Kurt

This is what I've been trying to say all along. Let the player make large and inefficient beam weapons with low tech just like they can make large and inefficient engines or sensors or missiles with low tech. And then let them make large, very efficient beam weapons with high tech...
Posted by: Shuul
« on: October 08, 2018, 05:37:10 PM »

As the one who does not use missile weapons in Aurora I would pretty much kill for better customization of energy weapons.
Posted by: QuakeIV
« on: October 07, 2018, 04:07:03 PM »

I agree completely, let players decide the acceptable level of cost for a weapon (which dedices the size of their beams at a given tech level) and then tech just improves your ability to make any given weapon.
Posted by: alex_brunius
« on: October 07, 2018, 03:48:40 PM »

I like the idea of, instead of limiting by focal length, allowing any focal length and having an efficiency that gets better with tech.  In other words, at laser tech 1 you could have a 40 cm laser, but it would be a power hog and very large.  With better tech it would become more power and mass efficient, and have a better range, but you could still have a massive laser at lower tech levels, if that's what you wanted. 

Yeah I think so too. Crude but huge low tech beam weapons would be cool, especially for stuff like railguns!

It would probably require a rework of most beam weapons though for consistency, and I think I would prefer to see any version of C# Aurora released before such a thing happens.
Posted by: Hazard
« on: October 06, 2018, 03:35:47 PM »

You are mistaking what's the weapon with a missile based combat vessel.

It's not the launcher. All the launcher does is check how fast you can fire. Damage, range, hit chance, counter defense measure effectiveness? All part of the missile itself.
Posted by: Xkill
« on: October 06, 2018, 01:12:02 PM »

Especially since beam weapons are quite small in general. A single 80cm laser masses 1250 tons, while a size 100 launcher is 5000 tons.
Nobody uses a Size 100 launcher for anything, the comparison is moot. There is no need to go for larger missiles over time because missile capabilities get better with tech. Whereas a larger beam weapon does offer better performance over a smaller beam weapon.

In my current game, a 25cm C6 Far Ultraviolet Laser is the main weapon of my beam combatants and it's 10 HS. My main missile launcher is 8 HS and the box version is 1.2 HS. So I wouldn't say that, in actual use, beam weapons are smaller in general. Especially since for overwhelming PD, it's a pretty common strategy to favor box launchers over regular launchers.

Historically, there have never been (to my knowledge) cases where a military force went for "smaller guns" over "bigger guns". The only reasons to ever limit gun sizes have been cost and mobility. Hence why WW1 field guns were generally around 60-80 mm whereas WW2 field guns went to 100-120 mm and now 155 mm is a pretty standard size for field artillery and is no longer the sole function of special heavy artillery battalions. Ship guns increased in caliber as much as possible until airplanes and missiles surpassed them in killing power. So from that POV, I don't think there is a need to make smaller beam weapons a valid choice over larger beam weapons. Faster firing rate already has a quality of its own, but if you can get to 5-sec recharge rate, there is no reason and should be no reason to use a 10cm laser over a 30cm laser.

Or did I misunderstand you?

No, you actually understood pretty well. I had not considered that when compared with the sizes of missile launchers that are used the most (1-6 HS), the size of beams is actually quite similar. They only start to get bigger somewhere above 20-25cm.

Your second point does illustrate something rather interesting however, and it's that missile combat capabilities are mostly determined by the stats of the missiles (the projectiles themselves), while for beams, only the weapon itself matters. More specifically, the size of the weapon. In missile designs, you have to make choices. Putting more MSP on warhead means lower range; no armor; slower/less accurate ... There is no such thing with beams.

I think you could add a lot of depth if a similar system for beams was in place. You might decide to sacrifice range for more damage; perhaps require more power to fire so you can get more range; adding special abilities like dealing more damage to shields or armor ...

I'm not trying to argue whether larger beam weapons are better than smaller beam weapons or vice-versa, just that more customizable beam weapons would be a good idea.

I guess I did hijack your thread a little bit, sorry about that...  :)
Posted by: Kurt
« on: October 06, 2018, 01:00:38 PM »

I'm not trying to argue whether larger beam weapons are better than smaller beam weapons or vice-versa, just that more customizable beam weapons would be a good idea.

I like the idea of, instead of limiting by focal length, allowing any focal length and having an efficiency that gets better with tech.  In other words, at laser tech 1 you could have a 40 cm laser, but it would be a power hog and very large.  With better tech it would become more power and mass efficient, and have a better range, but you could still have a massive laser at lower tech levels, if that's what you wanted. 

Kurt
Posted by: Hazard
« on: October 06, 2018, 11:11:48 AM »

With the move towards total tonnage rather than tonnage limit for maintenance facilities, large ships are more viable in C# than in VB6. There's simply no longer a massive difference in hauling capacity required to get the maintenance facilities for a large ship in place compared to 5 ships of 1/5th the weight. It also means that you need the same amount of maintenance facilities for a fleet with a combined weight of 100 000 tons as you do for a single ship of 100 000 tons, so I'd expect that the total demand for maintenance facilities and shipping for maintenance facilities in far off corners of your empire will rise a little.
Posted by: Jorgen_CAB
« on: October 06, 2018, 08:19:16 AM »

In some ways, low-tech weapons become more favourable.  6 15cm/C1 lasers cost about as much as one 15cm/C6 laser of the same wavelength for similar firepower over time (more bulk to carry, but also more bulk to absorb hits at no additional cost... what is preferable may depend on our speed requirement). In combat, they will face the same number of breakdowns over time, but they will be much more expensive in the former case.

In a similar vein, if long weapon range can't be used decisively it is expensive in terms of wear-and-tear.

These are counteracted to some extent by maintenance changes; large cheap ships will be more difficult to maintain effectively.

That is a very faulty calculation. Tonnage is by no means free. I would calculate about 20%-40% of tonnage is available for weapons. If your weapons is 6 times as bulky, you need 6 times more engines to move them.
If you assume the ships cost per ton is roughly constant, you pay 4 times more for the bulky weapons even if you assume 40% weapon tonnage. (0.4+6*0.6 tonnage overhead)
Not at all.

Tonnage is expensive if you need to haul it at ludicrous speed; here you'd mostly use high-tech weaponry (although V1 railguns make sense for PD).

If performance doesn't matter, you have the option of making your ship cheaper per HTK than armour. Both engines and weapons can act as damage sponges, cheap bulk that isn't prone to explosions (higher-power engines, power plants as a proportion of the ship) may be an asset rather than a liability.

Or you may go for low-tech weapons because they are resource-efficient for peacekeeping and somewhat useful against an alien threat.

Tonnage might not mean as much right now but will do much more in C# Aurora when facilities only can hold a specific amount of tonnage as opposed to a certain size ships.

I agree that you should consider the resistance of ships in general as important as well as you say, this is why I only have few dedicated beam ships and put main beam weapons on pretty much all capital ships. It is way more efficient to have 5 lasers in 10 ships rather than 10 lasers on 5 ships and then 5 with no lasers when it comes down to beam combat (even when you consider fire-control redundancy). These other 5 ships with no beam weapons can be ignored in combat those 10 with a few beam weapons each can't.

When it comes to if beam weapons need more options and diversity I'm not so sure... what other things more specific could you do as opposed to how it is now?

You can still build weapons of different sizes depending on what they are for. You don't need a 25cm against a fast small craft to defend yourself with, you might be better of with a few smaller turreted ones with higher tracking speeds. You also need some for dual purpose as PD and main defence which also can be smaller rather than larger so you can fit more of them. The large calibre ones are good for high damage at longer ranges and which is why you use them.

Since I rarely make specialist ships above a few thousand tons then there is a huge difference if a beam weapons weigh 100 or 500 tons, so it all depends on the type of ships you build if the size of a single weapon is a factor or not.
Posted by: BasileusMaximos
« on: October 06, 2018, 03:27:01 AM »

I'm not trying to argue whether larger beam weapons are better than smaller beam weapons or vice-versa, just that more customizable beam weapons would be a good idea.
Posted by: Iranon
« on: October 05, 2018, 08:33:45 PM »

In some ways, low-tech weapons become more favourable.  6 15cm/C1 lasers cost about as much as one 15cm/C6 laser of the same wavelength for similar firepower over time (more bulk to carry, but also more bulk to absorb hits at no additional cost... what is preferable may depend on our speed requirement). In combat, they will face the same number of breakdowns over time, but they will be much more expensive in the former case.

In a similar vein, if long weapon range can't be used decisively it is expensive in terms of wear-and-tear.

These are counteracted to some extent by maintenance changes; large cheap ships will be more difficult to maintain effectively.

That is a very faulty calculation. Tonnage is by no means free. I would calculate about 20%-40% of tonnage is available for weapons. If your weapons is 6 times as bulky, you need 6 times more engines to move them.
If you assume the ships cost per ton is roughly constant, you pay 4 times more for the bulky weapons even if you assume 40% weapon tonnage. (0.4+6*0.6 tonnage overhead)
Not at all.

Tonnage is expensive if you need to haul it at ludicrous speed; here you'd mostly use high-tech weaponry (although V1 railguns make sense for PD).

If performance doesn't matter, you have the option of making your ship cheaper per HTK than armour. Both engines and weapons can act as damage sponges, cheap bulk that isn't prone to explosions (higher-power engines, power plants as a proportion of the ship) may be an asset rather than a liability.

Or you may go for low-tech weapons because they are resource-efficient for peacekeeping and somewhat useful against an alien threat.
Posted by: Garfunkel
« on: October 05, 2018, 06:49:43 PM »

Especially since beam weapons are quite small in general. A single 80cm laser masses 1250 tons, while a size 100 launcher is 5000 tons.
Nobody uses a Size 100 launcher for anything, the comparison is moot. There is no need to go for larger missiles over time because missile capabilities get better with tech. Whereas a larger beam weapon does offer better performance over a smaller beam weapon.

In my current game, a 25cm C6 Far Ultraviolet Laser is the main weapon of my beam combatants and it's 10 HS. My main missile launcher is 8 HS and the box version is 1.2 HS. So I wouldn't say that, in actual use, beam weapons are smaller in general. Especially since for overwhelming PD, it's a pretty common strategy to favor box launchers over regular launchers.

Historically, there have never been (to my knowledge) cases where a military force went for "smaller guns" over "bigger guns". The only reasons to ever limit gun sizes have been cost and mobility. Hence why WW1 field guns were generally around 60-80 mm whereas WW2 field guns went to 100-120 mm and now 155 mm is a pretty standard size for field artillery and is no longer the sole function of special heavy artillery battalions. Ship guns increased in caliber as much as possible until airplanes and missiles surpassed them in killing power. So from that POV, I don't think there is a need to make smaller beam weapons a valid choice over larger beam weapons. Faster firing rate already has a quality of its own, but if you can get to 5-sec recharge rate, there is no reason and should be no reason to use a 10cm laser over a 30cm laser.

Or did I misunderstand you?
Posted by: Hazard
« on: October 05, 2018, 06:38:07 PM »

Also, a Capacitor 6 weapon reloads considerably faster than a Capacitor 1 weapon. It'd be better to instead use the lowest Capacitor rating you can get away with to reload the weapon in 1 5 second tick. Sure, it's not as cheap per weapon, but it's considerably more mass efficient, which lets you squeeze more guns on the ship with faster firing rates.

With energy weapons, it really matters how much you can fire your guns and how fast.

Missiles are kinda different, but those depend more on salvo size, rather than how fast you can cycle the launchers.
Posted by: Whitecold
« on: October 05, 2018, 05:29:12 PM »

In some ways, low-tech weapons become more favourable.  6 15cm/C1 lasers cost about as much as one 15cm/C6 laser of the same wavelength for similar firepower over time (more bulk to carry, but also more bulk to absorb hits at no additional cost... what is preferable may depend on our speed requirement). In combat, they will face the same number of breakdowns over time, but they will be much more expensive in the former case.

In a similar vein, if long weapon range can't be used decisively it is expensive in terms of wear-and-tear.

These are counteracted to some extent by maintenance changes; large cheap ships will be more difficult to maintain effectively.

That is a very faulty calculation. Tonnage is by no means free. I would calculate about 20%-40% of tonnage is available for weapons. If your weapons is 6 times as bulky, you need 6 times more engines to move them.
If you assume the ships cost per ton is roughly constant, you pay 4 times more for the bulky weapons even if you assume 40% weapon tonnage. (0.4+6*0.6 tonnage overhead)
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