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Posted by: alex_brunius
« on: Yesterday at 06:01:47 PM »

I believe handwavium stipulates that even pre-TN ships are constructed in orbit.  But yes fuel/mass vs delta-v would still be a major problem.

It's a good point. A more complete improvement of pre-TN tech isn't possible without reworking some mechanics, for example so that getting out of the gravity well and into orbit is on the same order of magnitude expensive fuel wise as getting around inside the solar system.

My suggestion was not that ambitious though, just a few balancing and small "minimum effort" additions to make it feel a bit more plausible, and possible to have some interesting scenarios set in this tech level which also could include space warfare.

A larger rework is probably not meaningful unless you try and make Newtonian Aurora complete with Delta-V budgets and so on, which actually seemed to be something Steve was toying around with quite a few years back.
Posted by: Hazard
« on: Yesterday at 04:48:29 PM »

I was thinking that a government corruption mechanic could make for some interesting gameplay/roleplaying opportunities.

Basically, the way I see it working is as a tab on your Military Academies that goes from "uncorrupt -> lightly corrupt -> corrupt -> heavily corrupt", which can be changed one pip every (say) 5 years.  Uncorrupt would work as per usual, while increasing corruptness would cause your Military Academies to generate (a lot of) wealth, representing the ability of wealthy citizens to purchase ranks in the military well above their levels of competence.

The flip side of this would be an increasing percentage of leaders who spawn with substandard or possibly even negative modifiers in their abilities.  To get around the fact that players will (obviously) just not use these leaders, some (all?) of these leaders will have a "political appointment" tag - all leaders with political appointment tags must be assigned to an appropriate station before you can start appointing regular leaders, and all political appointments cannot be reassigned for a minimum amount of time (probably a year or two. )

So you'll have to dedicate some percentage of labs to idiot scientists, or small, out of the way colonies to drunken administrators, or assign a commander to your gas harvester so that they're not blocking you from assigning a promising recruit to an actual ship of the line.

Political Naval Officers maybe should also come with a "must be assigned to a military vessel" tag, so you can't just throw them into your transports. . .

Okay, first? The amount of wealth that would go into buying those commissions is going to be trivial compared to actually running the military, or the long term drain on military resources due to corrupt practices of corrupt officers. And I don't just mean in the loss of lives, munitions and equipment due to those officers being incompetent in combat, I also mean things like the procurement office giving their palls in the military industry sweet deals in return for a cut of the profits, or crates of military equipment and supplies (even if it's just crates of food and shelters) disappearing into the black market, with the conspiracy dividing the price of the sale while turning around and telling the logistics branch to bring more supplies.

There's a reason corruption is a pretty serious charge for officers and enlisted both.

Second, political appointees are already a thing in this game; it's the politically connected trait (IIRC of the top of my head), and it counts as a double strength qualifier when calculating promotions. As such, politically connected but poorly qualified officers often promote more quickly than their more competent but less connected officers. This only applies to military officers though, administrators and head scientists aren't affected by the promotion system after all. For those, what matters is their administrative rank and skills, as those the maximum size of the colony they can be appointed to or the number of labs that can be assigned to them, as well as what bonuses they offer.
Posted by: mtm84
« on: Yesterday at 03:49:48 PM »

I'm aware of that but what I am after is making pre-TN ship design feel a bit more plausibel with you needing to assign more than 1-2% of the ship mass to fuel which is silly when our real rockers today use something like 90%+ and that's still not enough for SSTO.

I believe handwavium stipulates that even pre-TN ships are constructed in orbit.  But yes fuel/mass vs delta-v would still be a major problem.
Posted by: alex_brunius
« on: Yesterday at 03:06:14 PM »

pre-TN engine tech isn't marked by low efficiency, it's marked by their engine power. The most basic TN engine has a 40 EP to hullsize ratio, the pre-TN Conventional Engine has a 1EP to hullsize ratio.

It'll get where you want it to get, but it's going to be slow as molasses getting there.

Efficiency doesn't offer high engine power or speed, it offers lower fuel costs for the same distance for the same weight of vessel. No seriously, range of the ship doesn't change when you shove in a stronger or weaker engine with the same engine efficiency modifier as long as the weight of the ship also remains the same.

I'm aware of that but what I am after is making pre-TN ship design feel a bit more plausibel with you needing to assign more than 1-2% of the ship mass to fuel which is silly when our real rockers today use something like 90%+ and that's still not enough for SSTO.
Posted by: AlStar
« on: Yesterday at 02:27:46 PM »

I was thinking that a government corruption mechanic could make for some interesting gameplay/roleplaying opportunities.

Basically, the way I see it working is as a tab on your Military Academies that goes from "uncorrupt -> lightly corrupt -> corrupt -> heavily corrupt", which can be changed one pip every (say) 5 years.  Uncorrupt would work as per usual, while increasing corruptness would cause your Military Academies to generate (a lot of) wealth, representing the ability of wealthy citizens to purchase ranks in the military well above their levels of competence.

The flip side of this would be an increasing percentage of leaders who spawn with substandard or possibly even negative modifiers in their abilities.  To get around the fact that players will (obviously) just not use these leaders, some (all?) of these leaders will have a "political appointment" tag - all leaders with political appointment tags must be assigned to an appropriate station before you can start appointing regular leaders, and all political appointments cannot be reassigned for a minimum amount of time (probably a year or two. )

So you'll have to dedicate some percentage of labs to idiot scientists, or small, out of the way colonies to drunken administrators, or assign a commander to your gas harvester so that they're not blocking you from assigning a promising recruit to an actual ship of the line.

Political Naval Officers maybe should also come with a "must be assigned to a military vessel" tag, so you can't just throw them into your transports. . .
Posted by: Hazard
« on: Yesterday at 12:22:57 PM »

pre-TN engine tech isn't marked by low efficiency, it's marked by their engine power. The most basic TN engine has a 40 EP to hullsize ratio, the pre-TN Conventional Engine has a 1EP to hullsize ratio.

It'll get where you want it to get, but it's going to be slow as molasses getting there.

Efficiency doesn't offer high engine power or speed, it offers lower fuel costs for the same distance for the same weight of vessel. No seriously, range of the ship doesn't change when you shove in a stronger or weaker engine with the same engine efficiency modifier as long as the weight of the ship also remains the same.
Posted by: alex_brunius
« on: Yesterday at 10:48:18 AM »

I would like to see a few more ship components and installations to make pre-TN gameplay a bit more fun for those of us that like starting from almost nothing:

- Pre-TN colonization transport module ( Similar to Cryogenic but with say 1000 or 2000 capacity of 10000 ) so you can get a small offworld colony started
- Pre-TN engine techs ( 1 or 2 more levels with say 50 or 100 times worse fuel efficiency )
- Ability to build additional Conventional Industry as an installation
- Ability to slowly produce missiles ( most consistent probably as a small % of CI )
- Ability to slowly produce fighters ( most consistent probably as a small % of CI )
- Ability to make a very basic sensor / MFC ( I guess could also be handled like ICBM Launch Control but a pre researched version of each for ships too )
- Ability to make a very basic magazine ( I guess could also be handled like ICBM Launch Control but a pre researched version of each for ships too )
- Pre-TN slow geo-surveying ship module ( I mean we do start with the ability to mine them on our homeworld so with enough time/effort why not find them on other worlds? )
Posted by: QuakeIV
« on: December 08, 2019, 08:15:18 PM »

I for one think in general it would be nice if at some point mineral mining was de-simplified so you could focus purely on mining the stuff you actually want.
Posted by: Hazard
« on: December 08, 2019, 04:03:44 PM »

Well, I was basically thinking like this:

Mining potential would be the total amount of minerals a given planet could dig in a year, let's say that we're at 300 mines with a mining rate of 10 tons per year per mine, so 3000 tons in total.

Weighted share of minerals by availability would go, for example, go with Duranium (0.7), Gallicite (0.2) and Mercassium (0.1). Total availability is 1.0, total mining rate is 3000 tons, Duranium has 7 shares of the mining rate (total mined in a year 2100 tons), Gallicite has 2 shares (total mined 600 tons) and Mercassium has 1 share (total mined 300 tons). Total mined is 3000 tons of material.

Weighted share with loss of potential from lack of availability would go 0.7 Duranium, 0.2 Gallicite, 0.1 Mercassium, 0.3 unavailable, 0.8 unavailable, 0.9 unavailable, total 2.0 unavailable, and mine 700 tons of Duranium, 200 tons of Gallicite and 100 tons of Mercassium. The remaining 2000 ton capacity is 'wasted', dredging up Newtonian materials from the depths of the aether that are not relevant to the game or otherwise just expended effort that is not useful. There would still be 3000 tons of material mined in total even 2/3rd of it is discarded.

Being able to turn certain minerals off in a mining operation is helpful in this case because it lets you go for 0.7 Duranium and ignore the impact and loss of efficiency due to low availability of other materials, you'd still need to account for the 0.3 unavailability rating though. So in that case you'd be mining 2100 tons of Duranium, 900 tons of discarded waste material, and not touch the Gallicite and Mercassium deposits.

Being able to turn off certain minerals in a place where you are always mining the maximum possible of the mineral wealth of the planet with the availability ratings only impacting ratios of the materials dug up would kinda break the system because it'd allow you to use this setup to mine 3000 tons of material from an availability 0.1 material from a planet with only one or a few materials, and would render a body with all minerals at 1.0 availability but in small quantities strictly inferior to a body with vast quantities of all materials at only 0.1 availability simply because that body is going to be mined for a long time to come.
Posted by: Father Tim
« on: December 08, 2019, 03:31:48 PM »

Thinking of the mineral situation that so often causes issues:

Refactoring mining from 'full mining rating, all materials, multiply by availability' to 'total mining potential, weighted share of minerals by availability', which would produce 10 times as much of a 1.0 mineral over a 0.1 availability mineral, or 'total mining potential, weighted share of minerals by availability, fractional loss of potential according to total of ((number of minerals)-(sum of availability))', which would make body with a small number of high availability minerals very valuable over a planet with one or two high availability minerals and low availability on the others because the mining potential loss fraction is so much lower.

Although in that case you want the ability to focus efforts on mining a certain mineral as a planetary/colony policy, or a technology that lets you lower the availability penalty.

All of these would pretty majorly impact the economic side of the game though.

The main goal here is to offer a little greater control or at least different trade offs, without the oddities that you sometimes get like where you are desperately mining a low availability deposit of a material you need while the same high availability deposit of a material you don't need (right now) just produces a bigger and bigger stockpile of stuff you can't make use of.

I don't entirely understand your suggestions, but the ability to set a colony-wide 'focus on this mineral' command that, say, doubled the availability of one mineral at the expense of halving all the others would be valuable to me.

So Planet Bob, with 1.0 Duranium, 0.8 Neutronium, 0.6 Gallicite, and 0.4 Mercassium could be set to focus on the Merc (effectively 0.8) at the cost of reducing Dura to 0.5, Neut to 0.4, & Gall to 0.3; or focus on the Neut (1.2) and get Dura 0.5, Gall 0.3, & Merc 0.2.


- - - - -


Obviously, a colony with only one or two minerals would gain +100% or +25% to its total mining rate from this change.  Any colony using this feature would also be racing towards the point of diminishing availability at twice the previous rate.
Posted by: Hazard
« on: December 08, 2019, 10:25:23 AM »

Thinking of the mineral situation that so often causes issues:

Refactoring mining from 'full mining rating, all materials, multiply by availability' to 'total mining potential, weighted share of minerals by availability', which would produce 10 times as much of a 1.0 mineral over a 0.1 availability mineral, or 'total mining potential, weighted share of minerals by availability, fractional loss of potential according to total of ((number of minerals)-(sum of availability))', which would make body with a small number of high availability minerals very valuable over a planet with one or two high availability minerals and low availability on the others because the mining potential loss fraction is so much lower.

Although in that case you want the ability to focus efforts on mining a certain mineral as a planetary/colony policy, or a technology that lets you lower the availability penalty.

All of these would pretty majorly impact the economic side of the game though.

The main goal here is to offer a little greater control or at least different trade offs, without the oddities that you sometimes get like where you are desperately mining a low availability deposit of a material you need while the same high availability deposit of a material you don't need (right now) just produces a bigger and bigger stockpile of stuff you can't make use of.
Posted by: amram
« on: December 07, 2019, 10:36:02 AM »

Definitely a concern.  Smaller ships have less ability to counter punch at range, or to take the abuse until they can.  They can't mass enough armor to take abuse, nor enough shields to shrug it off.  Nor can fighters compete for ECM/ECCM, generally either 10% behind with compact, or way 30% behind with compact.

That said, they almost always have a significant closure and numbers advantage.  You can hit 180kkms and still pack beam weapons if you want to, closing at speeds that make most missiles seem slow.  Those speeds can push their hit chances below 50% point blank, and worse at range.



Agreed on "fear the microwave" if you don't harden the hell out of an FC that big — you're begging to get it blotted out, microwaves have some reach, lol.  If you built to counter microwaves, you likely went shield heavy, and Meson's can gut you.  Build for Meson and you might lack enough shielding to help against microwaves, lol.  Build for both, master neither.
Posted by: Jorgen_CAB
« on: December 07, 2019, 08:51:01 AM »

Shields can force the main fighting to be within 5 light seconds anyways.

I don't see the problem.

And how well does those shields work against particle beams ( which retain full damage out to max range ) or against mesons ( which ignore shields )?

If the particle beams are on the attack?  They cap out at 1.2mkm.  They can afford to force you in closer by having a vastly cheaper FC and cheaper weaponry, in tonnage terms.

If the Particle beam ship is the one needing to weather the storm to get its kill, then with you can match their 15.5kton investment into destruction on a smaller investment of just 8200 tons with an 8x FC getting you 7300 tons to spend on shielding if your need to to force them closer.  That lets a 25 damage 20 RoF 800 ton particle beam, with 10 on one ship, output 250 damage at 65% odds at 700kkm, for a sustained 8.125 damage per second, and a whopping 146 shields, for the same tonnage budget.

Do note that I've ignored the cost of carrying enough MSP to ever manage a single repair of the only firecontrol on the ship, which swings things further towards the inferior tech shield heavy ship.  80,000 MSP costs you quite a bit of tonnage, its just far too messy to work out in excel.

So, you get 4x36hs shields.  Which means you have 1440 hp base, at 189.7% strength for 2732hp more shielding than them, and 4.8hp/sec regen.  This lets you sustain the abuse indefinitely beyond 1.1mkm, or last for 15.595 minutes at 700kkm over which you can do 11500 damage with strength 25 hits.

If they could kite you to death now, then they still can, with a narrow 300,000 window to do it in where you cannot respond.  If you can get the closure to 1000km/s, you can close that gap in just 300 seconds, 5 minutes, you'll survive 15+.



Mesons get to play with ranges up to 10.08mkm, you are gonna get a little chewed up on the way in.  Have HTK to spare.  Spend your excess, if any, on armor.  To have that range, they'll need an FC of at least 10.08mkm, a multiplier of 58, for an FC tonnage of 1450, and 10 weapons, at 1250 tons, it costs them 13950 tons.

Now, one would think that mesons bypassing shields and armor become king.  Except, in c# they don't entirely bypass armor, they may be stopped by it, you can weather this storm, somewhat.  7% chance to penetrate at maximum tech, per layer of armor.  At max tech, you can make the max tech warship at around 35ktons easily enough.  For a 35kton warship, putting 6 layers of armor, 6 shields, 2 16HS x2.15 engines, and 14 Large fuel + 1 Normal gives a 35kt warship that can do 70kkm/s over 20bkm and still have 22ktons for mission package.  Plenty of headroom to load the 15.5kton weapons package above. 

So lets drop two engine tiers to plasma core engines, .16 fuel, and drop two tiers in armor. 6 layers of armor, 6 shields, 35ktons, 9 45hs x3.0 engines, and 53 Normal Fuel tanks, and I get a warship that can do 106.5kkms over 9.5bkm 10 particle beams as above.  Drop the shields and raise to sit at 6 layers of armor leaves just enough mission package to carry adequate MSP and a simple sensor, very short endurance.  We've a closure of 36kkm/s if they attempt to run.  A lucky strike could send us packing, we can lose 2 engines before they can close in on us.

We can close the range in 260 seconds, or 7 firing cycles before we can retaliate.  So I will assume they get shots every 1340kkm of range closed in, starting from 1000kkm outwards, so the first shot as closing would occur at 10.076mkm.  They have a 93% chance to penetrate armor per layer and we have 6 layers, so they have a 64.7% chance of getting an internal hit per actual hit, they've got 10 weapons.  The first salvo at 9.04mkm nets 0.667 hits, 7.7mkm nets 1.53 hits, 6.36 nets 2.39, 5.02 -> 3.24, 3.68 -> 4.1, 2.34 -> 4.97, 1 -> 5.83, sum total of 22.7 hits, call it 23.

We have 207HTk in just engines, comprising 69.9% of all hits.  50HTk in fuel, 44 HTK in crew, 12 in engineering.  In DAC, 415-558 is particle beams, 562-565 is fire control, 610 is search sensor, 674-682 are reactors.  Those comprise just 155, out of a total of 686, or 77.4% of internal hits are going to be absorbed by systems not critical to killing the opponent - though engines can really only afford one loss.

She's short legged, but can win her fight by taking 65% engine/fuel, can't go hunting, but if they come to her...



Can you overcome a min-maxed warship on the same tonnage that has tech advantage?  Probably not.  Can you build a tech disadvantaged warship to kill an advantaged warship?  Absolutely.  Can two ships of equal tech deal with their shortcomings?  Certainly.

Only way the Meson holds its range advantage for same tech, is equal or greater investment into engines, or lesser tonnage.  Both require you decrease weaponry, c# imposes a penalty to having few rapidly firing weapons, that 2% failure will bite you.  Over 34 shots, its 50/50 that a weapon fails.  The Meson wants its range, it needs to splurge on an FC, that hands the speed advantage, or the quantity advantage, or the defence advantage tot he competitor.

To get that disadvantaged in a fight between equals, one of you wasn't teching at all, or the other was handed the advantage as a handicap.

I still don't see this as the insurmountable task its been made to be. 

See attached for the particle beam/meson warships specc'ed out.  Keep in mind I stacked multiple FC's to consume tonnage as if it were bigger—as if the multiplier allowed such ranges, and over stocked MSP to allow replacement of the FC, which is the biggest cost in both ships.

I hope that fire-control is hardened if the ship is ever hit by a Microwave weapon....  far more dangerous to such ships than any other weapon.  ;)

I probably agree that there would not be a huge problem... but if these extreme beams was unleashed I think you should also add some penalty or bonus to hit based on ship size. Otherwise small ships might get really shafted as you focus fire easily on them with weaker shields, not to mention really small ships or fighters being even worse.
Posted by: amram
« on: December 07, 2019, 06:35:09 AM »

Shields can force the main fighting to be within 5 light seconds anyways.

I don't see the problem.

And how well does those shields work against particle beams ( which retain full damage out to max range ) or against mesons ( which ignore shields )?

If the particle beams are on the attack?  They cap out at 1.2mkm.  They can afford to force you in closer by having a vastly cheaper FC and cheaper weaponry, in tonnage terms.

If the Particle beam ship is the one needing to weather the storm to get its kill, then with you can match their 15.5kton investment into destruction on a smaller investment of just 8200 tons with an 8x FC getting you 7300 tons to spend on shielding if your need to to force them closer.  That lets a 25 damage 20 RoF 800 ton particle beam, with 10 on one ship, output 250 damage at 65% odds at 700kkm, for a sustained 8.125 damage per second, and a whopping 146 shields, for the same tonnage budget.

Do note that I've ignored the cost of carrying enough MSP to ever manage a single repair of the only firecontrol on the ship, which swings things further towards the inferior tech shield heavy ship.  80,000 MSP costs you quite a bit of tonnage, its just far too messy to work out in excel.

So, you get 4x36hs shields.  Which means you have 1440 hp base, at 189.7% strength for 2732hp more shielding than them, and 4.8hp/sec regen.  This lets you sustain the abuse indefinitely beyond 1.1mkm, or last for 15.595 minutes at 700kkm over which you can do 11500 damage with strength 25 hits.

If they could kite you to death now, then they still can, with a narrow 300,000 window to do it in where you cannot respond.  If you can get the closure to 1000km/s, you can close that gap in just 300 seconds, 5 minutes, you'll survive 15+.



Mesons get to play with ranges up to 10.08mkm, you are gonna get a little chewed up on the way in.  Have HTK to spare.  Spend your excess, if any, on armor.  To have that range, they'll need an FC of at least 10.08mkm, a multiplier of 58, for an FC tonnage of 1450, and 10 weapons, at 1250 tons, it costs them 13950 tons.

Now, one would think that mesons bypassing shields and armor become king.  Except, in c# they don't entirely bypass armor, they may be stopped by it, you can weather this storm, somewhat.  7% chance to not penetrate at maximum tech, 93% chance they do penetrate per layer of armor.  You can make a max tech warship at around 35ktons easily enough.  Putting 6 layers of armor, 6 shields, 2 16HS x2.15 engines, and 14 Large fuel + 1 Normal gives a 35kt warship that can do 70kkm/s over 20bkm and still have 22ktons for mission package.  Plenty of headroom to load the 15.5kton weapons package above. 

So lets drop two engine tiers to plasma core engines, .16 fuel, and drop two tiers in armor. 35ktons, 9 45hs x3.0 engines, and 53 Normal Fuel tanks, and I get a warship that can do 106.5kkms over 9.5bkm 10 particle beams as above.  6 layers of armor leaves just enough mission package to carry adequate MSP and a simple sensor, very short endurance.  We've a closure of 36kkm/s if they attempt to run.  A lucky strike could send us packing, we can lose 2 engines before they can close in on us.

We can close the range in 260 seconds, or 7 firing cycles before we can retaliate.  So I will assume they get shots every 1340kkm of range closed in, starting from 1000kkm outwards, so the first shot as closing would occur at 10.076mkm.  They have a 93% chance to penetrate armor per layer and we have 6 layers, so they have a 64.7% chance of getting an internal hit per actual hit, they've got 10 weapons.  The first salvo at 9.04mkm nets 0.667 hits, 7.7mkm nets 1.53 hits, 6.36 nets 2.39, 5.02 -> 3.24, 3.68 -> 4.1, 2.34 -> 4.97, 1 -> 5.83, sum total of 22.7 hits, call it 23.

We have 207HTk in just engines, comprising 69.9% of all hits.  50HTk in fuel, 44 HTK in crew, 12 in engineering.  In DAC, 415-558 is particle beams, 562-565 is fire control, 610 is search sensor, 674-682 are reactors.  Those comprise just 155, out of a total of 686, or 77.4% of internal hits are going to be absorbed by systems not critical to killing the opponent - though engines can really only afford one loss.

She's short legged, but can win her fight by taking 65% engine/fuel, can't go hunting, but if they come to her...



Can you overcome a min-maxed warship on the same tonnage that has tech advantage?  Probably not.  Can you build a tech disadvantaged warship to kill an advantaged warship?  Absolutely.  Can two ships of equal tech deal with their shortcomings?  Certainly.

Only way the Meson holds its range advantage for same tech, is equal or greater investment into engines, or lesser tonnage.  Both require you decrease weaponry, c# imposes a penalty to having few rapidly firing weapons, that 2% failure will bite you.  Over 34 shots, its 50/50 that a weapon fails.  The Meson wants its range, it needs to splurge on an FC, that hands the speed advantage, or the quantity advantage, or the defence advantage tot he competitor.

To get that disadvantaged in a fight between equals, one of you wasn't teching at all, or the other was handed the advantage as a handicap.

I still don't see this as the insurmountable task its been made to be. 

See attached for the particle beam/meson warships specc'ed out.  Keep in mind I stacked multiple FC's to consume tonnage as if it were bigger—as if the multiplier allowed such ranges, and over stocked MSP to allow replacement of the FC, which is the biggest cost in both ships.
Posted by: alex_brunius
« on: December 07, 2019, 03:03:25 AM »

Shields can force the main fighting to be within 5 light seconds anyways.

I don't see the problem.

And how well does those shields work against particle beams ( which retain full damage out to max range ) or against mesons ( which ignore shields )?
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