Author Topic: Dropping Troops from Orbit  (Read 3617 times)

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Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #15 on: December 25, 2018, 07:55:12 AM »
I think that you might want to check on a miniature game called "Tomorrow's War", it basically features platoon level combat between sci-fi forces at a similar tech and sci-fi level as that of Aurora.

In there Anti-Grav vehicles can basically drop down from orbits on their own but they can't really get back up on their own. So a technologically advanced or well equipped elite force could very well drop from low orbit using their combat vehicles, while the support part would use anti-grav lifting vehicles to land.

You then have lifting crafts with strong enough anti-grav and thrust engines than can lift containers and/or vehicles from the ground and up or down from orbit as necessary. These lifter would normally just be able to lift large containers and you probably have different types, anything from smaller ones able to lift a medium vehicle or squad to really large ones. The can either lift the vehicles themselves or large containers that can be reused and purposed for different types of cargo in a modular system.

Translating this to Aurora I would think that the proposed system would tailor this relatively well and perhaps you should make it much easier to land stuff than lifting them off the ground, especially anti-grav vehicles that actually can land from low orbit without any direct assistance for quick insertion into a hot combat zone.

You also could have a technology at what distance from a planet you can drop your troops from which you can advance as necessary.
 

Offline Kytuzian

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #16 on: December 25, 2018, 09:26:46 AM »
I’m attracted to Aurora, and I mind. I love the level of control we have over new ground forces, but sometimes you’re just adding complexity for complexities sake, and I think this is one of those cases. There is no fun for me in having to manually rebuild the shuttles for my dropships, because it’s not interesting, it’s just admin that I shouldn’t have to deal with.

To clarify, we already have dropships you can build to run from your carrier to the planet. I don’t think we need to design 10t dropships to fit inside our 1000t dropships.

I agree. I like Aurora, but building drop pods just seems tedious.
 

Offline Marski

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #17 on: December 25, 2018, 09:41:11 AM »
I don't mind.
I play aurora because it has the immense depth of detail that allows me to design my naval vessels and military facilities down to the smallest detail that allows me to run my nation and military forces however I want. You cut that away and its no longer aurora.
 

Offline King-Salomon

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #18 on: December 25, 2018, 09:54:41 AM »
I would go with solution #2 - complet abstraction of small craft

I don't need small craft which has to be designed..

something I would say is "OK" would be some kind of "boarding torpedo" - which would NOT be designed but have a standard design, which would be stocked in magazines and used like missiles without launchers (included in the dropping bays) but could be restocked easily like missiles... each "boarding torpedo" could have a capacity of X tons, and the game would automatically reduce the needed # of them for the "drop" - after which the ship my restock at a collier...

not more micro for the player than missiles restocking...

but that would be a solution if something like small craft would be really wanted to - which I don't think is necessary...
 

Offline Whitecold

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #19 on: December 25, 2018, 04:40:18 PM »
I would support both proposals, since I really don’t want the micro of consumable shuttles. Your refined idea definitely seems like the cleanest solution to me.
I don't think the sort of people aurora attracts who go through the effort of learning to play it mind the micromanagement.

"It is Aurora" is not an excuse for bad design practices. If you introduce an element, there should be a meaningful decision attached to it.
If you must repeat it a hundred times, you should be able to schedule it automatically. Yes, Aurora has a higher level of detail than many other games, but these details should be meaningful, and not there for their own sake.
 
The following users thanked this post: Scandinavian, QuakeIV, Kytuzian

Offline QuakeIV

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #20 on: December 25, 2018, 11:48:25 PM »
I only want to design something it if it matters.  It seems to me personally that if a ship that can hold the desired number of troops in its bays reaches the planet, then it can somehow dump them out and go.  No need for further mechanics to let you disrupt the process.  Either the ships troop bay component is destroyed somehow (possibly as part of the whole ship dying) or it isn't.

I don't think it would be insane to say that at least for military hulls, they could simply enter the atmosphere briefly to unload near the surface before departing again, to justify how the troops got from orbit to the surface so quickly.

Should it take time to unload enough dudes for a full scale invasion?  Yes, that should probably only really be possible if enough of the orbital defenses have been knocked out to allow transports to wait around for a while and let everyone (relatively) peacefully and happily disembark over the course of minutes.
 

Offline Conscript Gary

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #21 on: December 26, 2018, 02:24:23 AM »
So, typical ships would require abstracted parachutes to combat drop troops, and shuttle bays/spaceports to load troops at a slower pace, because they have to stay in orbit.

What about fighter-sized transports? They're able to land directly on the surface of the planet, below the reach of STO weapons. The ability to load/unload directly when they're down there would make for an interesting dynamic in case of evacuation.

The ability for all troop bays to drop from orbit regardless is probably the best way forward besides that odd little edge case though.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2018, 02:35:47 AM by Conscript Gary »
 

Offline Whitecold

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #22 on: December 26, 2018, 02:54:07 AM »
Will we be able to split up a formation over multiple ships?

For drop ship designs there still seem to be two design strategies, either fast to dodge or heavily armored and shielded to survive the drop. A small fast ship will not have much cargo capacity, likely smaller than a single formation. A 3000t drop ship can maybe have 1000t cargo capacity, which are only 250 infantry.
 

Offline Retropunch

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #23 on: December 26, 2018, 04:16:28 AM »
I definitely feel the standard should be drop pods with shuttles for pickup (which is extremely dangerous under fire). It makes sense and provides more risk to the player.

In terms of drop pods, I like the idea of 'ammunition' - this could improve with tech (better avoidance of missiles etc.) and need restocking but wouldn't require actual management. It'd just be a case of tech improvement and making sure you were stocked up. I'd make it cheap and abundant (enough for two drops per ship for instance) but scarce enough that you can't just endlessly drop without resupply.

Similar to what Scandinavian said, it'd probably be a good compromise to limit drop pod usage to infantry and light/medium vehicles, with shuttles used for heavy/ultra-heavy (or set a ton limit). This would give players the best of both worlds, as they have shuttles for the 'heavy hitters' which still need upgrading/monitoring whilst the majority is done through drop pods.

 

Offline Steve Walmsley

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #24 on: December 26, 2018, 06:31:36 AM »
Will we be able to split up a formation over multiple ships?

For drop ship designs there still seem to be two design strategies, either fast to dodge or heavily armored and shielded to survive the drop. A small fast ship will not have much cargo capacity, likely smaller than a single formation. A 3000t drop ship can maybe have 1000t cargo capacity, which are only 250 infantry.

You can't split a formation across multiple ship (same as VB6), but you an create much smaller formations if desired and then assemble them on arrival. However, given the likely size of most formations large ships are likely to be the norm (which is why I have made all the bays commercial systems). There are likely to be three main class of troop transport. Normal bays on ships with minimal armour, intended for general movement of troops or delivery to combat zones with no STO threat, The more expensive Drop Bays on heavily armoured transports, intended for opposed landings, and fast, probably naval-engined ships, equipped with boarding bays.

 

Offline Garfunkel

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #25 on: December 26, 2018, 06:44:57 AM »
I also support that the instant, or near-instant, drop pod/grav chute deployment is restricted to infantry and light vehicles, or a tonnage limit that can be improved via technology to some extent.
 

Offline Steve Walmsley

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #26 on: December 26, 2018, 06:50:07 AM »
I also support that the instant, or near-instant, drop pod/grav chute deployment is restricted to infantry and light vehicles, or a tonnage limit that can be improved via technology to some extent.

This is an interesting idea. However, the primary use of large armoured formations would be planetary assault, so if you can't get them to the surface of well protected (by STO) planets, they may not be worth building. STO units are probably going to be rear echelon and therefore difficult to kill. The best way to kill them will be breakthroughs and the best type of unit for that is armour.
 

Offline Retropunch

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #27 on: December 26, 2018, 09:29:01 AM »
I also support that the instant, or near-instant, drop pod/grav chute deployment is restricted to infantry and light vehicles, or a tonnage limit that can be improved via technology to some extent.

This is an interesting idea. However, the primary use of large armoured formations would be planetary assault, so if you can't get them to the surface of well protected (by STO) planets, they may not be worth building. STO units are probably going to be rear echelon and therefore difficult to kill. The best way to kill them will be breakthroughs and the best type of unit for that is armour.

I'd imagine it more that it's costly to drop the large armour formations (armoured drop ships etc. needed) whereas for the majority of the lighter stuff (which is less useful) it'd be instant and cheap to do (with little micromanagement).
 

Offline chrislocke2000

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #28 on: December 26, 2018, 12:24:25 PM »
I quite like the idea of abstracting the drop through small anti-grav units or whatever and with having larger units dropped by shuttles but there is only any point in that if the shuttles can be targeted. Also allowing people to get troops on the ground without loss on that landing phase feels a little wrong to me.  I wonder if there needs to be a drop phase in combat that last for one 3 hour cycle when the ground forces with STOs or anti aircraft capability are able to engage the troops being dropped?

Also the one other thing I'm not sure about is the ability of attacking forces to deliver their forces at any range other than in orbit. I was hoping to be able to have some ships stand off from the planet and still deliver both troops and air cap fighters to the surface. That feels like it needs shuttles to achieve.
 

Offline Marski

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Re: Dropping Troops from Orbit
« Reply #29 on: December 26, 2018, 01:33:46 PM »
I would support both proposals, since I really don’t want the micro of consumable shuttles. Your refined idea definitely seems like the cleanest solution to me.
I don't think the sort of people aurora attracts who go through the effort of learning to play it mind the micromanagement.

"It is Aurora" is not an excuse for bad design practices. If you introduce an element, there should be a meaningful decision attached to it.
If you must repeat it a hundred times, you should be able to schedule it automatically. Yes, Aurora has a higher level of detail than many other games, but these details should be meaningful, and not there for their own sake.
Command: Modern Naval Air Battles has invidual helicopters as something you can micromanage if you want to. But you dont need to, since the game has a extensive system to streamline multi-phase tasks with conditions. Maybe Steve should take a look at how they do it?
 

 

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