Author Topic: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)  (Read 4641 times)

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Offline Hazard

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[EDIT BY SLOANJH - I split this sub-thread off the main V0 suggestion thread because I could tell it was going to go long, and don't know how to insert a post at the beginning of a thread so I'm doing it here :)]

Even easier solution; the ability to shoot at Jump Gates.

This would require a reconsideration of how to build Jump Gates though, especially if it leaves a salvageable wreckage.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2018, 12:10:21 PM by sloanjh »
 

Offline Seolferwulf

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2018, 02:03:10 PM »
How about removing Jump Gates altogether?
This way people and NPRs will have to construct Jump Tenders/Mobile Jump Gates and place them.
Those can be shot at without trouble and also be withdrawn, when necessary.
Maybe with some tweaks to the AI so they board Jump Tenders instead of blowing them up.

Edit:
If I recall correctly the main advantage of Jump Gates are the cheap price compared to Jump Tenders and that ships of any size can pass them.
How about turning Jump Gates into a ship component which retains the ability to send off any ship no matter the size but makes the ship it is attached to completely immobile once it is affixed to a jump point.
This way Jump Gates can be designed as the player wishes, including weapons and other goodies.
You would also be able to destroy or board them.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2018, 02:12:25 PM by Seolferwulf »
 

Online QuakeIV

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2018, 04:01:15 PM »
I think it would be cool if jump gates were perhaps a station you had to construct, and they require a certain degree of engineered capacity in order to admit a certain amount of tonnage per month.
 

Offline Hazard

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2018, 04:43:01 PM »
Another option; Jumpgate construction requires a module (like now) that consumes a resource (Maintenance Supply Points is fine) and in return it constructs a set size capacity per month measured in some number of tons, probably hundreds but balancing required. A Jumpgate can only be constructed on explored jump points and is bidirectional and present on both sides. You can select a jump point or gate and note down a required capacity limit, which means that any jump gate construction ship that has spend a full construction cycle on the point will add to the size of the jump gate up to that limit. It is possible to shrink gates down in size by either firing at it (similar to shipyards IIRC) or by having it deconstructed. Shooting at it runs the risk of destroying it entirely as it's prone to exploding if it takes damage, deconstructing it takes time and money and you lose the MSP invested anyway but it keeps the gate from being blown up by accident.


The big difference between a gate and a fleet of jump tenders would be maintenance (gates just require less, but should probably eat Wealth of the species that build the gate) and the fact that it's much easier to create a large enough gate to send huge ships through. However, gates are immobile, offer access to everyone and take a lot of time compared to moving in a jump tender.
 

Offline Profugo Barbatus

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2018, 05:15:52 PM »
I'm happy with any solution that allows jump gates to be destroyed, but I do like the capacity expansion idea there.

As it stands, I usually avoid building jumpgates in my RP games because they tend to stand as an invasion liability for both parties. My few games that I played to large sizes, the factions were careful to only build gates in core systems and not to the edge of their territories. But if we could engage in scorched earth defenses, tearing down our own gates, that would be excellent. Similarly, being able to raid the enemy infrastructure by tearing down their gates with a nimble fleet and crippling civil transport in the process would be quite fun.
 

Online QuakeIV

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2018, 05:54:07 PM »
I'll bring this up here, steve mentioned in the mechanics thread that perhaps he would change it to 'stabalized jump point' which I think would be a vastly superior description of how jump gates are now, if he wants to keep them that way.  In general that makes more sense as to why you cant tear them down.
 

Offline Barkhorn

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2018, 06:21:17 PM »
I don't know about that.  Why can't I destabilize it?  If I have the tech to manipulate it and make it stable, why not manipulate it and make it unstable?  You can use a crane to build a building, and you can also use one to tear it down.
 

Online QuakeIV

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2018, 09:49:17 PM »
It could be shifting the jump point into a local equilibrium that is much more stable than its natural state, for instance.  Hence, possibly prohibitive amounts of energy required to put it back to its starting condition.
 
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Offline Seolferwulf

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2018, 02:10:58 AM »
I agree with Barkhorn.
In the real world every change is reversible.
If you can't you simply don't know how yet.
Not being able to artificially destabilize a jump point is weird in my subjective opinion.

Is there a compelling reason for gameplay to prohibit it?
 

Offline waresky

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2018, 02:53:58 AM »
Am really HATE JumpGate system..i like ONLY that : "Megatraveller" (Mar W.Miller@ Copyright) System. The Best from 1979 (oh my god..my 15th years...am old..damn).

Only.
And ONLY Traveller/Megatraveller Universe its the best sci-fi (yeah..probably better than 2300AD)

So pls..stop waste time in jumpgate effort.

My 2 cent and apologize ma english.:)
 

Offline sloanjh

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2018, 12:08:07 PM »
A few points of history [EDIT - which morphed into a more detailed version of Seolferwolf's suggestion for getting rid of jump gates completely AND a suggestion for solving the superluminal communication between systems technobabble problem]:

1)  Jump gates went through a LOT of gyrations in mechanics over the years.  I don't remember the details, but I think a major early phase involved manufacturing (5 mines of cargo space's worth IIRC of) "Jump Gate Components" (i.e. prefab) and hauling them out to a jump point on freighters where the construction module would put them together.  There was a general consensus that this was too much micromanagement

2)  There was lots of back and forth on whether or not they should be destroyable.

3)  IIRC, the original vision was that they were like the Babylon 5 jump gates, i.e. both the mechanic of having jump engines on big ships to create a temporary wormhole AND the mechanic of having a permanent structure to create the wormhole (for small ships) worked in Aurora physics.  This migrated into the (what I think is current canon) "open a permanent stable wormhole" idea when (IIRC) people started to argue that anything physical should be destroyable.

4)  Jump gates were introduced before the current non-assault "jump bridge" (I forget the real name) mode of jump ships, where the player doesn't have to worry about micromanaging the ferrying back and forth in a non-combat situation.  This mode was originally suggested as a level-of-detail abstraction (similar to e.g. not tracking the shuttle trips used to resupply a ship), but IIRC this offended Steve's sense of consistency :) and so he changed canon to the "temporarily stabilized wormhole" idea.

5)  For a long time (I'm not sure if it's still true), Steve needed jump gates for civilian trade route planning.  He was worried that a civvie would load cargo at system A to go to system B, only to have a jump gate between the systems vanish.  The discussion/model at the time was very much that jump gates were permanent infrastructure that an empire would construct to facilitate communication between the core systems, analogous to bridge building in land empires.

So I see the following ways to go:

A)  Steve figures out how to manage civvie path planning, so jump gates can be eliminated altogether in favor of jump ships in "bridge" mode.  This would be a full 360 back to wormholes requiring physical equipment to keep them open, except that physical equipment would just be the jump engines.  Players would probably end up making "jump bridge" ships (similar to fuel processors) with small or no "commercial" engines that would be towed to a jump gate, i.e. the original idea would have been implemented in the smaller set of ship mechanics rules.  I can see Steve liking this idea a lot :) both from coding and technobabble minimization points of view - it's basically the same pattern we just went through where PDFs got folded into ground unit mechanics (except probably a LOT less coding & detailed nuance).

IDEA FOR SOLVING THE CIVVIE PROBLEM - [EDIT post-posting - This is essentially Seolferwolf's suggestion upthread] just add a "permanent jump bridge" checkbox to the ship's (not class's) or TG's info (same coding pattern as active sensors on/off).  If the player checks the box, that signals intent to the civvies that he won't move the bridge and that the civvies can rely on it. [EDIT - should be a 3 state selector: "off", "temporary bridge", "permanent bridge" - see inner/outer empire discussion below] If a civvie gets to a system where the bridge is gone (either destroyed or moved), then the civvie tries to path plan to the destination using a detour route.  If the destination is unreachable, it goes back to the original system or the nearest reachable system.  If there's no route, then it gives up.  [EDIT - thinking about "how does the ship know if the new destination is currently reachable given comm lag" led me to the following]

EVEN BIGGER IDEA FOR SOLVING THE SUPERLUMINAL COMMUNICATION PROBLEM -  I would code all this up using instantaneous knowledge of the jump bridge network by technobabbling that jump ships in bridge mode can get signals from both sides of the wormhole and act as a rely - that means (if you assume super luminal communication within a system) that the "inner empire" becomes a very strong concept - it's all the systems connected by permanent jump bridges; these are the systems civvies will take contracts to.  There's also an "outer empire" which includes ships providing temporary jump bridges.  The two things the outer empire contributes to the game are that gives a mechanism for instantaneous communications everywhere in the outer empire and it can be used by the orders screen code to warn TGs without jump engines that they won't be able to make a transit they're putting in.  Finally, there's the "fringe"/"rim" systems for which one has a jump that either doesn't have a jump ship or the jump ship is in "off" mode.  And yes, I realize this is just putting the ICN from StarFire back in, except it uses the fact that superluminal sensing is possible within a system to technobabble away the need to track/lay individual repeater buoys.

The reason I made the edit above to generalize the temporary vs. permanent checkbox into a 3-state off/temp/perm selector has to do with enemy action.  If you have an enemy sitting on the far side of a JP (where you have a jump ship) you don't want to leave it open (or the enemy will use it).  So your ship would shut the wormhole to keep the enemy from using it, BUT that also knocks out communication through the wormhole.  So adding the communication technobabble added this complexity.  One way to get around it would be to introduce the idea of a "periscope" mode (like was introduced in the later Kris Longknife books IIRC) that lets a jump ship peek through a wormhole to see if there's anyone nasty on the other side.  Then the enemy would have to park a ship on the wormhole in order to break it and the user wouldn't have to worry about micromanaging off vs. on based on enemy presence.  I think it's a lot simpler and more interesting game play to be "blind" to what's going on on the other side of a JP unless you open a gate that the enemy can use.  BTW, this probably means there should be a minimum time (e.g. 10 minutes) between opening and closing a bridge wormhole to give the enemy an opportunity to use it to pour through going the other direction.

B) I was going to list things like making jump gates two-way, keeping them as-is, etc., but I like what I came up with during the discussion above so I think that's the way to go (and suspect Steve will too).

NOTE - As you can probably tell, this post was stream-of-consciousness.  I've marked changes upstream that occurred while thinking it through with "EDIT".

OBSERVATION - I think this is another example of parallel evolution of fictional universes (referring to the fighter/LAC thread a week or two ago) - I was simply trying to recapitulate the history of the jump gate discussion in the context of a re-think/removal being reasonable, and ended up with the ICN (with zero time lag).

John
« Last Edit: May 06, 2018, 12:14:03 PM by sloanjh »
 
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Offline Barkhorn

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2018, 02:37:15 PM »
I think we could merge the jump gate system and the orbital habitat system.  Instead of having habitats built from factories, maybe they should be built like prefab PDC's used to be, and assembled on-site by construction ships.  Then your jump gate could just be an orbital habitat with a giant jump engine.  And it makes construction ships less one-dimensional.

This could be combined with your ideas, sloanjh.
 

Offline Hazard

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2018, 03:48:40 PM »
The big issues are the cost of a sufficiently massive jump engine (partially solved by being able to haul prefabbed components) and the question of how often and how large a fleet such an engine can jump. The biggest advantages of the current jump gate system are that they do not discriminate between Civilian and Military ships, that they can take ships of any size and that they don't have a cooldown or max fleet size.
 

Offline Seolferwulf

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2018, 05:06:51 PM »
The big issues are the cost of a sufficiently massive jump engine (partially solved by being able to haul prefabbed components) and the question of how often and how large a fleet such an engine can jump. The biggest advantages of the current jump gate system are that they do not discriminate between Civilian and Military ships, that they can take ships of any size and that they don't have a cooldown or max fleet size.

That's what I'm worried about, too.
Which is why I'd prefer Jump Gates as a ship component, which would keep its advantages from the current version but also comes with its own shortcomings.
In the current version replacing all Jump Gates with Jump Tenders would waste too much time and resources.
 

Offline Person012345

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Re: Jump Gate Construction/Destruction (split suggestions)
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2018, 05:41:12 PM »
I agree with Barkhorn.
In the real world every change is reversible.
How does one "unburn" something?

Quote
If you can't you simply don't know how yet
Well yes, that's the point, maybe noone knows how to destabilise the jump point.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2018, 05:42:49 PM by Person012345 »
 
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