Author Topic: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread  (Read 2219 times)

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Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« on: January 13, 2022, 06:50:00 PM »
So here I am again, feeling so relieved I didn't have to write any AAR anymore as I finished the last DLC, but of course it couldn't last. Nothing lasts forever. Even time itself has to stop flowing some day. ::)

I don't want to play 1.13 Aurora anymore and the VB6 UI is vastly superior to the C# one, so I guess it's finally time to try Quasar 4x which I will be doing starting from now. It has Invaders already if I remember correctly and I hope I don't remember incorrectly.  :P So far didn't set up the game yet as the VB6 UI being vastly superior doesn't mean I know it since I only played C# so will need to take some time to learn and adjust to it so as of now I've just written this short intro, but I plan to run a conventional start starting with 250m humans hiding in the installations of a polluted, destroyed Earth with toxic atmosphere, dust, radiation and scorching temperatures as well as with ruins of the old human civilization.

As for the theme, I want this short AAR to be a pure human experience and I'm going to try to explore the philosophy of human nature and condition and whether it's possible to truly change something and whether that one rebellion might really be the last that finally lead to the awaited "better future", whatever that really means... That means that there will be no aliens at all this time and I want to be upfront about it right from the start (though if I finally encounter that damn star swarm then maybe... ::)). Instead I think I'll take some human-related concepts from my original AAR (that one about covid-19  :P) and expand upon them, providing much more detail and descriptions, all wrapped in a cyberpunk theme (so expect implants, even more implants, genetic modifications, corporate oppression, lots of cool synthwave tracks I'll be linking from time to time and a hail of laser fire).

I also have some ideas for spicing up things past a certain point when the inevitable wars will come, but I'll keep quiet about them now.  8)
Any discussion about this new stuff I'll be working on is obviously welcome.
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2022, 07:07:42 PM »
I am wholly unconvinced that this was not simply an excuse to link a Cyberpunk cover of 'Africa'.  :P

Year 2120... Climate change, war, k-pop, century-old lack of toilet paper, release of Cyberpunk 2077 and other disasters have made the Earth uninhabitable.

Disasters obviously listed in order from least to most devastating, for dramatic effect.

Very dystopian/cyberpunk vibes in this introductory post, of course this is no surprise as it was the intent but the intent was certainly accomplished. I suspect this AAR was motivated in part by a recent trip to the movie theaters? The new Matrix movie perhaps lacked the same old magic as the older ones but it was still nostalgic and there is certainly room for a Stormtrooper take on the subject matter which may perhaps have more artistic merits.  ;)

Looking forward to seeing how a Quasar4x AAR looks, I think it would be the first on this board? Certainly the first one of significant length at the very least. I've tried playing it myself, on a laptop which doesn't support the C# resolution requirements, but even with the convenient UI rescaling in Quasar I've struggled a lot trying to get used to the VB6 UI, personally I prefer the C# one most of the time even if it has its own problems. However the old VB6 game had a certain elegant simplicity compared to C# which I sometimes yearn for...

Since Cyberpunk and Matrix are rather popular inspirations perhaps we will see some other commenters to join the discussion for this go-around?  ;D
 

Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2022, 07:27:14 PM »
Didn't expect it to see you so fast! Guess time flies when it is axtually stopped between cycles of the universe... Anyways, the joke is on you, because I didn't see Matrix, neither the new or old ones, so all I know about it could be summarized by "there's a simulation humans live in, it's actually smeg but the real world is also smeg". Oh, and pills and stopping bullets mid-air, obviously. So this matrix here is pretty much the same as the one from the Covid-19 AAR, just a simulation that feels very real into which humans escape from the sorrow of the real world and unsuccessfully try to escape from the pain of their miserable lives, I guess I'll just write more about it this time because cyberpunk.

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I am wholly unconvinced that this was not simply an excuse to link a Cyberpunk cover of 'Africa'. 

Citizen, for violating the safety of N.O.V.A. Bunker System by spreading false stress-inducing rumours, your weekly subscription for life support has been canceled. If you cooperate and tell us where and how did you learn about mentioned creations of the Old World you will get a chance to repent your sins by giving a final service for the society in a food processing facility. If you refuse, your subscription for limits on maximum daily dose of pain N.O.V.A. Inc might request from you will also be cancelled.
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2022, 07:40:13 PM »
Citizen, for violating the safety of N.O.V.A. Bunker System by spreading false stress-inducing rumours, your weekly subscription for life support has been canceled. If you cooperate and tell us where and how did you learn about mentioned creations of the Old World you will get a chance to repent your sins by giving a final service for the society in a food processing facility. If you refuse, your subscription for limits on maximum daily dose of pain N.O.V.A. Inc might request from you will also be cancelled.

"You'll never take me alive, coppers!!"
-some random human criminal, probably  :P
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2022, 11:00:43 PM »
Catching up, as I had the updates tabbed and then lost track of that tab. Now I have a new tab and thus far I have not lost track of it...

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and the hydroponics worked flawlessly ever since CEOs of Life Support Department nearly died while bravely fixing the assembly line with their bare hands.

I can already see the propaganda posters...

Interesting, this concept of what seems to be turning the less, um, compliant members of society into nutrient paste, mainly it is interesting because you would think if the hydroponics yields were as plentiful as the government says then there should be no need for such, ah, supplements. Somehow this thought goes largely un-thunk...

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And so the government eventually got a full picture of the signal which sending it tried so hard to prevent. But it had been sent nevertheless and the fleet from a system 39 light years away had been dispatched, its arrival obviously threatening the uncontested ruling power of the corporation and the status quo they tried so hard to maintain, with estimated time of arrival unknown, probably lost to the damaged bits of the Intergalactic Federation response. Running out of ideas, supplies and working pieces of technology, government had no choice but to unseal the Outer Gates for the first time and send teams of scavengers to explore the surface and relearn everything humanity has achieved before the collapse of the Solar System.

Interesting. So it seems that the gameplay, such as it is, starts from the perspective of the "bad guys" racing to create some kind of defensive against the "good guys" - by conventional definitions of course, obviously the corporations are the greater good and this other fleet threatens that greater good, right?

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Scavengers were bringing more Cyberpunk 2077 copies and k-pop albums each run and CEOs of N.O.V.A. Megacorps knew better than to carelessly mess with materials directly responsible for the fall of the Old World. Some teams have even successfully breached into various underground zombie shelters dated back to 2020 that, surprisingly, still contained well-preserved toilet paper rolls.

Truly the horrors of the past never truly leave us. There is a lesson in this, perhaps it might even be learned.

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With the help of a new drug causing users to mistake multiple-digit numbers for single-digit numbers,

How extremely convenient. Such a drug should be mandatory for loan officers everywhere.  ;D

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Fuel factories were growing on the surface and even some simple nuclear reactors were successfully restarted without irradiating too many people.

If you take the right drugs, it is a single-digit number of people which is certainly not too many, I think we can all agree on this.

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Stargazer class Survey Ship    5 000 tons     104 Crew     491 BP      TCS 100  TH 10  EM 0
[...]
10 EP Conventional Engine (1)    Power 10    Fuel Use 50%    Signature 10    Exp 10%

Briefly, I wondered why you would use such a small engine, before I remembered that this is Quasar which uses the old 0.2 EP/HS conventional drive technology.

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hen it turned its eyes towards the first prototype cloning program in the United States, but the three following civil wars (with the last one eventually ending up won by the South who then proceeded to mass-produce clones as slaves forced to do all the jobs people hated and tasked with further procreation)

The future seems, um, dark.

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Yakuza was the first criminal organization to hack into the cores of the droids, but other ones weren't much behind. Soon some independent journalists found out about it all being secretly funded by the most powerful corporations, but they all suffered very unfortunte road accidents shortly after.

Very unfortunate, those accidents. Truly the state of driver's education for investigative reporters in the 2060s was absolutely deplorable, no doubt...

I do wonder/worry what the potential is for all those androids used for colonization to cause problems for the spacefaring MegaCorps as we progress beyond the solar system...

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Its second purpose would be to transfer workers to the moon and later possibly Mars as well, but a few of them were expected to always be grounded in secret hangars near N.O.V.A. Bunker System which government could quickly reach in a state of emergency.

It is not like any self-respecting government could possibly function without a couple hundred thousand tons of escape shuttles, after all.

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Corporate officials couldn't be more excited after watching the broadcast. Technically it confliced with the official corporate narrative, so the cult leaders should have their life support subscriptions cancelled, but it was smarter to not only let them continue with their work, but actively fund and support them. This speech came right on time for the reintroduction of first bionic limbs in the society. It was even considered Church of Singularity leader had some leaks form the cybernetic engineers, but that was for Counter-Sabotage Bureau to investigate and conclude. Government didn't plan on relasing them to its army yet, let alone to the market, because they were still more like proesthetics one would get after losing biological limb rather than cool bionic parts one would have own limbs volountairly cut off for, but it was believed some cult followers wouldn't mind. It was expected that first user feedback would also get a long way in improving the next generation and accelerating the growth of this industry sector.

This is some good dark humor here. The subversive machine cult turns out to be a boon to the government because they provide test subjects for cybernetics research, whose expectations are really being subverted??

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Government once again evaluated the possibility of reopening Project NeoCitizen and for the second time came into conclusion that an army of droids might get useful. Maybe not advanced enough to become an army in the strict meaning in the nearest future, but all-seeing and all-hearing, loyal citizens reporting everything instantly via internet could go a long way in terms of suppressing the uprising. The question remained whether the corporation would hold on till technology would recover enough to allow that.

This is a good idea and cannot possibly go wrong (again).

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Whether the New World was to make same mistakes as the Old World remained an open question barely anyone had time to think about under corporate oppression. Some believed it already did, though.

Others of us have faith and hold out eagerly to see the all-new mistakes which will be made instead. Great fun!

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So when one of the critical modules produced Segmentation Fault, even the most influential among CEOs trembled.

Have they tried turning it off and back on again?

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Bullets kept flying, but insurgents didn't even care about being picked off by security forces - they mostly laid down suppressive fire on the Matrix infrastructure itself, damaging it with AR-15s, pipe bombs, Molotovs and even some C4 and flamethrowers scavenged from defeated guards.

I admit some mild disappointment that the venerable AK-47 apparently was unable to survive the Matrixification of the world. However, I am placated by the liberal use of high explosives and other pyrogenic weaponry, truly the world can only be a better place when such things see liberal application against computers.

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30th May 2172, annual Comitee of Humanity speech

This can end in one of two ways: either Glorious Space Communism, or Glorious Space Stalinism which is the same thing but with less food and more purging. Either way I await to see which shall happen.

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Meanwhile, somewhere deep in the Martian deserts, N.O.V.A. technicians presented their reports according to which the wrecked ships were of military use and that apart from their propulsion systems, a few railgun cannons and one laser blaster remained almost intact...

Clearly such salvage will be of great use for, um, maintaining the peace and restoring order. Yes, that is what these are for.

Now I am caught up, and I shall endeavor not to lose the next browser tab to the black abyss of the Matrix...
 

Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2022, 03:11:52 PM »
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Catching up, as I had the updates tabbed and then lost track of that tab. Now I have a new tab and thus far I have not lost track of it...

Wait what you keep all the threads you want to read in a separate tabs for weeks to no end or something? ???

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mainly it is interesting because you would think if the hydroponics yields were as plentiful as the government says then there should be no need for such, ah, supplements.

Of course it is "interesting" because it's not true at all. Hydroponics have always worked flawlessly and there has never been any need for supplements. Move along, citizen. I better not catch you spreading hateful rumours again...

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obviously the corporations are the greater good and this other fleet threatens that greater good, right?

That is correct, citizen. Now get back to work, your 5s break is over for this week.

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Such a drug should be mandatory for loan officers everywhere. 

Ok, I see you need to pay 1278952$ more to pay off your 5$ loan...

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Briefly, I wondered why you would use such a small engine, before I remembered that this is Quasar which uses the old 0.2 EP/HS conventional drive technology.

Wait what so aurora has better conventional engines? In 1.13 already? :o

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I do wonder/worry what the potential is for all those androids used for colonization to cause problems for the spacefaring MegaCorps as we progress beyond the solar system...

Every corporate android needs to undergo extensive testing, involving testing involving live human beings. It is impossible for a properly tested android to ever cause any problems.

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The subversive machine cult turns out to be a boon to the government because they provide test subjects for cybernetics research, whose expectations are really being subverted??

It's a win-win, right? Prime example of why N.O.V.A. Bunker System is the ultimate utopia and there was never a better time and place to be alive.

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This is a good idea and cannot possibly go wrong (again).

Did it ever go wrong? No? Well, if it worked even in the Old World then there's absolutely zero chance it'll not work out in the N.O.V.A. Bunker System.

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Have they tried turning it off and back on again?

Remember, lots of ancient wisdom about software has been lost in time.

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I admit some mild disappointment that the venerable AK-47 apparently was unable to survive the Matrixification of the world.

Who said it didn't survive? But here we don't have guerilla warriors hiding in the wilderness, but an armed militia fighting the government that turned totalitarian. Obviously AR-15 seemed like a preferred weapon of choice for that specific occasion.

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This can end in one of two ways: either Glorious Space Communism, or Glorious Space Stalinism

How about... no? But don't worry, your average citizen won't have it any better if that's your concern.  ;D

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Clearly such salvage will be of great use for, um, maintaining the peace and restoring order. Yes, that is what these are for.

Of course. These are the tools of peace. Never used for anything but maintaining peace? Why would it change if bringing peace is what this stuff does the best?

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I shall endeavor not to lose the next browser tab to the black abyss of the Matrix...

Matrix is down, so should be fine. Unless something else blows up which might happen.
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2022, 10:07:45 AM »
Wait what you keep all the threads you want to read in a separate tabs for weeks to no end or something? ???

Usually not weeks, but I do tend to open AAR tabs in threads... I follow AARs across multiple forums/games and all of these forums have in common a rather inflexible notification system, at best - so I tend to open new AAR updates in a tab but not always have time to read them right when I see them...usually I get around to it but if I start to develop a backlog from many AARs updating in a few days it can get...messy.

But of course in the end I, like Thanos, am inevitable.  ;)

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Wait what so aurora has better conventional engines? In 1.13 already? :o

In C# the conventional engines are 1.0 EP/HS, but in old VB6 Aurora they had only 0.2 EP/HS, which is what Quasar replicates. It's pretty rare to see this in practice since most players will immediately research NTEs before they build ships: in VB6/Quasar this was considered necessary since conventional engines usually can't reach speeds much more than Earth orbital velocity, but in C# the tech was boosted so that conventional engines can reach a few 100s km/s. If you have read Garfunkel's AAR which spends a lot of time at conventional tech levels you can see how this enables some interesting very-low-tech scenarios that would be painful to play out in VB6/Quasar. Personally I have a soft spot for the puny 0.2 EP/HS tech level for roleplay but it is admittedly difficult to make good gameplay with.

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It's a win-win, right? Prime example of why N.O.V.A. Bunker System is the ultimate utopia and there was never a better time and place to be alive.

I can think of a better time and place, of course the future when the N.O.V.A. Bunker System is even better and more utopian due to the ceaseless hard work of our corporate overlords Committee leaders!

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This can end in one of two ways: either Glorious Space Communism, or Glorious Space Stalinism

How about... no? But don't worry, your average citizen won't have it any better if that's your concern.  ;D

As long as the average citizen gets exactly what they deserve all will be well in the Committee of Humanity.

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Matrix is down, so should be fine. Unless something else blows up which might happen.

This is a testament to the tireless efforts of our glorious leaders, it used to be that everything would always blow up so reducing that probability to only "might" is an amazing accomplishment and should be celebrated appropriately. Of course.

And now there have been updates which of course require comment as well:

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Caustic Skies

This whole chapter is really an interesting look into the dynamics in fall and rise of civilizations. First, the emphasis on "loss" of technology in the aftermath of collapse of a state and how it is not because the technology disappears, rather the expertise is eroded by disuse and inability to sustain that technology base in the aftermath. It is a common theme both in real history and sci-fi universes like WH40K or BattleTech, in Aurora I think there is a unique opportunity to explore these things just due to the time it takes to make progress and the emphasis on long-term projects and planning.

Opposition to technology because it is a symbol of the corporations... an interesting twist and a difficult conflict to resolve, certainly not something that can be easily solved by subtly manipulating human progress in the background like some kind of shadowy cabal. The solution the Committee settles on is quite telling, establishing a secret base far from the common mass of humanity where only the loyal elite can access, it seems far too similar to the Corporations in practice even if the motives are superficially different, ultimately it is about holding onto power. I suspect this will not go as well as the Committee leadership is hoping...

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toilet paper was still nowhere to be seen on the market (rumours circulated about the richest having access to it, though)

One of these days someone will discover an abandoned toilet paper factory which is fully automated and still churning out rolls by the hundreds, but still trying to fill the backlog from 2020 which is why none of the toilet paper has made it to modern people.

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Everything went smoothly and for a while it looked as if the Comitee of Humanity would defuse social tensions, but it was then when Channel 9 News broadcasted an anti-government reportage, claiming to have "found out about all the corruption going on".

Ah yep there it is.

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We were able to verify they all came independently from each other, yet every single one mentioned some shady business going on behind the closed doors of labs belonging to Vanguard Energy Inc. Officially the corporation has signed a lucrative contract with TerraNova Inc for selling the latter its most advanced fission reactors to power terraforming installations, but our independent experts were able to conclude than it is impossible for such a powerful entity like Vanguard Energy Inc to be specializing in just fission reactors.

Oh look, a shadowy corporation doing secret things and hiding them from the world. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss?

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Many fear that their investments in the field of cybernetic industry are aimed at creating a new Matrix for the disobedient citizens to weaken the opposition and distract people from their miserable lives and make them feel powerless and unwilling to ever question current status quo.

Well don't go giving them ideas now...

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That's it for tonight, I wish everyone a pleasant evening and hope to see you next time. Tonight's "Breaking Corruption" was sponsored by Duranium Components Inc. Their latest invention is a brain chip for an easy access to all the broadcasts of your choice, including your favourite Channel 9 News, no matter the place, no matter the time. Stream all your favourite newsfeeds directly to your head. With the new chip you can transmit the video and sound directly to your brain. It's a true revolution on the market. Even if you're blind and can't afford bionic eyes yet, this will allow you to experience the visuals of news reports (or any other media for that matter) as if you were seeing them. There's a 20% discount for the viewers of "Breaking Corruption". Buy tonight and never let the information pass you by.

Ahahahaha it is a corporate hit piece against their competitors. Just perfect, not to mention the obvious parallels to TwitFaceGram.  :P

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Finishing Vanguard Offensive Defense System would grant the comfort of controlling humanity without anyone being able to oppose the ruling caste under the threat of unstoppable nuclear annihilation no matter the location in the Solar System, but whether it would be possible to deploy it in time was an open question.

This sounds like it is going to end poorly. For someone else, of course, certainly not for the Committee. After all the lesson we have learned from nuclear weapons is that whoever has them is invincible and can do whatever they want, surely their enemies will never get their hands on comparable firepower.

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At some point even bionic producers realised this isn't serving them in the long run, because a good customer was a returning and debt-paying customer and hardly anyone from the slums qualified for that.

Clearly out of all the negative effects of bionic implants, this is the most important one. Think of the lost profits!  :o

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Solenoyd Inc even officially proclaimed to have invested in the promising team of young, passionate scientists working on a next-gen environmental hazard protection in the form of kinetic forcefield deflecting elements from the outside, [...] Yet another problem for Comitee of Humanity, as this research might as well be just enough to interrupt the process of seizing ultimate control over all three bodies via Vanguard Offensive Defense System.

And now there is a tension which could lead to annihilation... One of the unwritten rules of the Cold War era for a long time was not to develop too effective anti-nuke defenses which would cause the other power to feel threatened by the ineffectiveness of their own weapons and feel like they needed to use them now or never. Until the 80s when as always economic collapse saved the day... Seems something similar is afoot here, Vanguard will need to make their move before Solenoyd and others are able to defend too effectively, it will be a clash of corporations and the common people will suffer for it once again.

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YY: Hmm... Space combat is a tale of the Old World... We don't really know what to expect... But... It's not our problem, right? If any of those big pewpews would happen to impact any of the three inhabited celestial bodies... That'd be... very unfortunate. But as the population would dwindle... Rather drastically... Technically... There would be labor shortage, so what if there was someone being able to provide the winner with androids? Lots of androids, all ready for work 24/7, all resistant to radiation and acid... So far they're very stupid, that's right... But I'm confident a few years of research and they'll do a good job as road constructors, warehouse workers or couriers. And everyone would be dependent on them. Everyone or this New World would fall apart. Why be the government and face all the anger of society if you can make lots of profit and have the government be dependent on you? By the way, heard your new type of RadAway works much better than the old one... But also costs like five times more to produce, right? Yeah, would be very unfortunate if some cities would get irradiated by missiles straying from their course by accident...

More motivation to end the world... I seem to recall once upon a time a beacon was sent to a far-away fleet, hopefully they will arrive and save humanity from the hubris of the corporate overlords before it is too late - if it is not already!  :o

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Exadev Space Industries

It seems like the deeper we dig, the more shady corporations there are doing underhanded things and building basically militaries to fight each other. How deep does the rabbit hole go? We should have ace reporter Emily Mortan investigate this...

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Void Bird class Dropship
[...]
Fuel Capacity 1 450 000 Liters    Range 147.6 billion km   (2136 days at full power)

It is an awful lot of range for such a ship with such a short-range mission profile... it makes one wonder what else Vanguard might be planning to use these for...

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The owner of Exadev Space Industries, formely only a mid-tier manager back in the N.O.V.A. Bunker System, stared at the design documents in front of him.

Aha. This must be the bottom of the rabbit hole, for here are the former MegaCorps bosses once again. Probably all of the pieces are in place and now we can have a pleasant little war with no lasting ramifications whatsoever.

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Proposed fleet faced certain problems, though.

It is interesting that despite having a much longer history, the N.O.V.A./Exadev ships still have marked technological inferiorities to some other corporation weapons systems. One would expect then to have a big tech advantage from all the old tech knowledge they made off with when they disappeared into hiding. I guess they really did get hit hard by the rebellion, then.

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And that's why the fleet was supposed to contain a PURGE Team. Microwaves, EMP blasters and jamming software.

I'm curious how effective such a fleet will actually be, I don't use HPMs very much so I don't know if they can be effective as a core part of a fleet doctrine.

The fleet ships in general look like one of the classic battlecruiser doctrines - high speed, heavy armor, but very small weapons loadouts to make room for all of that armor. It will be interesting to see how this works out, with that much armor they can survive a lot particularly if the enemy uses a lot of missiles to attack, but with so few weapons it may be difficult to kill an enemy fleet fast enough before the enemy fleet can chew through all of that armor with their more numerous weapons.

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Somewhere else in Cydonia Megacity

As we all learned from The Princess Bride, starting wars is a prestigious line of work, with a long and glorious tradition. Surely nothing can go wrong with this.
 
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Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2022, 02:54:31 PM »
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If you have read Garfunkel's AAR which spends a lot of time at conventional tech levels you can see how this enables some interesting very-low-tech scenarios that would be painful to play out in VB6/Quasar. Personally I have a soft spot for the puny 0.2 EP/HS tech level for roleplay but it is admittedly difficult to make good gameplay with.

You mean that one with La Belle Epoque and WWI but with magic rocks transisting these to space?  :P Well, 0.2 EP is painful. I'm surprised I could get a 5000t ship that could catch up to planets at all. In just 5000t. Or a ship that can catch up at all, full stop. For rp reasons I wanted to cut the last digit of speed from designs in the text, but obviously couldn't do so for Stargazer (it would not be able to even leave Earth's orbit...), then couldn't do it for next ships either (they'd end up looking slower than Stargazer...), then couldn't do it for combat ships too because again, better engines and military design and same speed as Void Bird... So I guess I'll have to leave cutting last digit for a different occassion and will be forced to just ignore these ships being way too fast.

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in Aurora I think there is a unique opportunity to explore these things just due to the time it takes to make progress and the emphasis on long-term projects and planning.

How so? You can't lose tech.

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the loyal elite can access, it seems far too similar to the Corporations in practice even if the motives are superficially different

Careful where you say that. Comitee of Humanity is NOTHING like corporations, obviously, and its motives aren't superficially different. It really wants to serve its citizens. It's a tough nut to crack, prevent corporations from rising into power once again. And certainly don't say this while driving. Anuual reports show a proof that talking about emotional things leads to a very high rate of accidents. Very unfortunate.

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One of these days someone will discover an abandoned toilet paper factory which is fully automated and still churning out rolls by the hundreds, but still trying to fill the backlog from 2020 which is why none of the toilet paper has made it to modern people.

No, obviously this factory is sustaining some survivors from 2020, providing them with all they need for a comfortable life. Just wait till some corporations blast a hole into their bunker...

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Oh look, a shadowy corporation doing secret things and hiding them from the world.

Oh, look, another road accident. Comitee should really tighten up driving license obtaining process. It's getting too dangerous to commute.

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the obvious parallels to TwitFaceGram.

wait what

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Clearly out of all the negative effects of bionic implants, this is the most important one. Think of the lost profits! 

There are no negative effects of bionic implants. Duranium Components Inc has entire departments focusing just on safety. No backdoors, no failures, no electrocuting users, nothing ever goes wrong. Independent researchers working in these labs have certified these products over and over again. At this point they're so secure even Duranium Components Inc couldn't break them in any way. The rest is just propaganda of those hateful people jealous that someone put out work to build a business. They could too, if only they woke up at 5AM each day and took a walk in the acid rain to strenghten their willpower.

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One of the unwritten rules of the Cold War era for a long time was not to develop too effective anti-nuke defenses which would cause the other power to feel threatened by the ineffectiveness of their own weapons and feel like they needed to use them now or never.

Me writing this AAR the way I do and having no idea about this: task failed successfully

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I seem to recall once upon a time a beacon was sent to a far-away fleet, hopefully they will arrive and save humanity from the hubris of the corporate overlords before it is too late - if it is not already! 

Comitee of Humanity provides and does a damn good job at keeping corporate overlords at bay. Are you suggesting your beloved Comitee doesn't do enough of a good job already, citizen? 8)

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it makes one wonder what else Vanguard might be planning to use these for...

For leaving without refueling, of course. Speed is time, time is money and money is all that matters.

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high speed, heavy armor, but very small weapons loadouts to make room for all of that armor

"When things fly at you, armor helps." Lead Exadev Engineer, probably, internal military design conference, Cydonia 2196

Obviously from now on it seems that every tension has been defused, every problem solved and a great era of peaceful discussions and cooperations awaits!
 

Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2022, 05:38:42 PM »
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The whole having a brain implant to constantly stream and be connected, don't tell me that's not Facebook's, etc. end game and they would take the opportunity in a snap

Oh wait. I just noticed some weird acronym and was like the hell is that thing. Now I can see the three components that make it. So, well, yeah, of course it's the leader of Matrix research in the cyberpunk dystopia we live in, that's for sure.

Now for the important matter... I have an annoucement to make.

As anyone who reads this have noticed, a lot more detail went into the recent battle description compared to anything I've written before. The reason is pretty simple. This battle isn't with any npr, neither did I suddenly want to try getting bored by fighting myself. It's a PVP duel with another player. Those of you who are on discord might have noticed that duels are back in Aurora and quite a few had been resolved already. The idea is simple: Decide on tech level, build points, create fleet, send it to host of the battle and input commands in private messages while receiving info about what goes on.

Special thanks to people from Aurora discord server: Somebody1212 for hosting this fight (and preparing a cool poster for it!) and to ChaoticNeutral for being my opponent. Currently the battle is still going on due to scheduling problems and different timezones.

I noticed some people tend to write AARs based on multiple starting factions that fight with themselves, running all of them to produce better results than npr combat, but it certainly isn't for me. So I decided to try this "Aurora multiplayer" to generate a hopefully more interesting battle for you. Once again thanks for the people that made this possible. I hope I'll be able to do a few more of these for this AAR, at different tech levels, to make a break from nprs and spice things out. Hope you'll enjoy the fight.

P.S. Dear nuclearslurpee, something weird happened with this post - once I posted it displayed as yours, not mine. Damn bugs from 2077... So I decided to simply delete it and post once again... And the aftermath is that somehow your latest reply got deleted. I don't know what the hell has happened here, I'm not a mod so shouldn't even be able to delete someone's else posts, let alone for it to happen this way, but I'm afraid nothing I can do about it now. Sorry for the inconvenience.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2022, 05:41:46 PM by Stormtrooper »
 

Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2022, 09:37:15 PM »
P.S. Dear nuclearslurpee, something weird happened with this post - once I posted it displayed as yours, not mine. Damn bugs from 2077... So I decided to simply delete it and post once again... And the aftermath is that somehow your latest reply got deleted. I don't know what the hell has happened here, I'm not a mod so shouldn't even be able to delete someone's else posts, let alone for it to happen this way, but I'm afraid nothing I can do about it now. Sorry for the inconvenience.

If you post about it in the Forum Issues board, Erik may be able to do something about it. Otherwise I will be satisfied that the knowledge that a reply existed is superior to the reply itself.
 

Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2022, 02:23:32 PM »
And so the duel came to an end. Once again I would like to express my gratitude to Somebody1212 for running the duel and ChaoticNeutral (now known on discord as CN, the COMPETITOR) for putting a bloody good fight (honestly it was him who should've won this, he had more laser firepower and box launchers and shields meanwhile I just got lucky I had PURGE Team, without it there would be no way for me to win) and for everyone commenting on the duel channel as well. This was (obviously) the best battle in Aurora I ever had and gave me some good material to work with and write a detailed battle description at last. While obviously not every encounter in this AAR will be like this (I don't have the strength to try to write so much detail for every NPR encounter and they often are too straightforward to be worthy of taking up too much space), I hope I'll get at least one or two duels more to spice things up in the future.
 
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Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #11 on: March 24, 2022, 05:38:37 PM »
Well, to anyone who was reading this... I am sorry for my disappearance. Life got pretty... complicated since February. But I've always been finishing my AARs and so it's a matter of honour for me to write "THE END" in this one, too. On the bright side, I've recently finished Cloudpunk base game and its DLC, so I have my head filled to the brim with dreams about purple neons, corporate oppression and cybernetic augmentation so that means I have lots of stuff ready to be written about (just need to actually play Quasar 4x for a bit, too...).

You can expect new updates to start rolling from this weekend. Wish all the best to the ones mentally living already in 2077  ;)
 
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Offline nuclearslurpee

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2022, 10:28:36 PM »
Okay fine I'll read it you've convinced me   :P

Actually I meant to save the big battle sequence until completed but real life got away from me and I am just now catching up on my AAR backlog as usual.

Part 1: Really enjoyable tense leadup to the confrontation, with the fog of war in full effect. Curious twist with the unexpected news reporter, now I wonder who sent them and why... and why is hacking them a bigger priority than the battle at hand?  ???

Part 2: Very exciting, tactical combat here!
 - Dodging the first volley of missiles was neat, tricking the enemy about your fleet speed and outwitting their attempt to guess the firing range worked out great.
 - Second volley was of course unavoidable, but to lose only one ship in the fleet against 120 fighters launching 4 missiles each is a pretty nice outcome.
 - Third volley should have been devastating but was badly mismanaged by the opponent, a very good stroke of luck for the NOVA strike force.
 - Now I'm curious what the PURGE ships are, at first I thought some kind of ECM ships but ECM doesn't work like this, not yet sure what else they could be... HPMs maybe?

Part 3: Ah, the PURGE teams are in fact HPM ships, so planning to blind and cripple the Committee fleet in a quick strike. I'm not sure why it makes sense to re-open the range after the PURGE strike, I'd think you'd want to push in once their sensors are blinded so you can shoot before they are back online. Still a very bold tactic since you risked losing the PURGE ships to a missile volley but the enemy did not respond in time.

Part 4: Looks like the enemy fleet at least had competent designers, spreading the lasers between all classes so that you cannot target only a few ships to eliminate the entire threat.

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Lan Screwsmith:
This is a top-tier name and I applaud this man's parents accordingly.

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admiral cursing who the hell thought only 6 layers of armor and no shields on Determination would be a good idea and so on.
...whistles innocently - I dunno, it's usually good enough for my PD ships...

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at the same time enemy lasers eventually dealt a final blow to PURGE 001. On a pure tactical level wasting firepower on an already disarmed vessel was plain stupidity. But this simple act had another purpose. Purpose that could be seen in the eyes of surviving PURGE crewmembers. Comitee of Humanity was ruthless. It didn't target its blasters in the most effective way. It wanted to make sure to blow up every ship, one by one, no mercy, kill as many as possible. Being knocked out of combat didn't mean surviving anymore (for as long as life support didn't get damaged too much). It meant certain death instead. However, it had as much positive as negative effect. Some crewmembers just got enraged by this and wanted to double their efforts to make sure the Comitee would pay for this.
Thus we see yet again in human history that sacrificing tactical efficiency for the sake of terror and brutality is poor decision making.

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Luke Short: Sir... I think I have... Baaaad news... We still don't know what the bug is about... Buuuuut... A driver for calculating engine power output needed for various distances, inertia of ships, turning ratios, fuel consumption and alll that... Is based... On a framework... That had been released... In 2077...
Pffffffffft.  :P :P :P  I sense that the author is still salty about that particular game release...

Definitely ending this part in a very tense state between the two fleets, it could go either way but the Committee opponents need to take out the rest of those PURGE ships before they get shredded without any recourse.

Part 5: Here we see the author using the famous tactic of interrupting a gripping and compelling narrative to advance a side plot while the readership hangs in suspense. Truly this is a tactic known only to the great masters of the AAR art form, I say with no self-interest whatsoever.

Meanwhile, the tactic of closing in has apparently worked as one of the two giant ships is knocked out of the fight by the surviving PURGE teams.

Part 6:
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This was the final straw for the fleet admiral to rip remaining hair of the top of his head, creating a new style that hairdressers would later refer to as "Cosmic Emptiness".
Cute.

Part 7:
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"This is acting Fleet Admiral Stan Cannon speaking, on behalf of the Solarian-Jovian-Martian Coalition fleet. We have ceased fire of our weapons and are prepared to discuss terms of surrender."

Just like with Convention IV, he had no idea what the hell the Comitee meant by "Solarian-Jovian-Martian Coalition", especially with the "Martian" part, but it hardly mattered.
Well, I'm curious at least. You'd think Mars would know which side they are on if nothing else, to boot one wonders why Jupiter and Mars get special treatment as if they aren't also "Solarian".

A really tense and exciting battle, nicely done by both the author and his shall we say assistants. The service awards are a nice touch at the end, and I really like the effect you've gotten by using the black background and texture to look like cyberpunk computer images. I also wouldn't mind knowing which pack you used for the additional ribbon devices if you want to share!

----

Now moving on to the current updates:

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CEOs of Exadev Space Industries of course were aware of this. They didn't want to give up on power, but they were walking on eggshells, with plenty of citizens simply confused about their stance. They defeated Comitee of Humanity, hated by many... But hated precisely for allowing corporations to expand uncontrolled, spreading like cancer through every structure holding the society together.

Clearly the solution is to rebrand as something really foreign-sounding to the people so they do not realize it is actually a corporation. "Exadev Aktieselskab" has a nice ring to it.

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According to the reports from PURGE hackers working day and night to track down all the nodes and scraps of information, it was all a part of an agreement between Thorium Conglomerate and Avalon Heights Inc. Their owners intended to steer the battle towards nuclear annihilation territory, ending the world yet another time and then appearing as "saviours" with the main selling products of each corporation, namely enchanced RadAway and experimental blue collar androids for simple manual labour in hazardous conditions.

I am shocked, I tell you, absolutely shocked, that some evil corporation would plot to take over the solar system through some underhanded and grossly inhumane maneuver.

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During 162371234th emergency corporate meeting, a risky but possibly rewarding resolution

Absolutely shocked I tell you.

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Whatever the case, Exadev Space Industries was determined to figure it out before anything extrasolar would threaten their position. CEOs hardly cared about the cost and means anymore - all they wanted was a spacecraft that would allow a preemptive strike on Trappist-1 system quicker than the information about its launch would take to reach and alarm whoever was messaging from there.

This seems perhaps just a tad optimistic of the CEOs. Surely by now the fleet that was formerly in Trappist-1 must have left to come to Sol, thus a strike on Trappist-1 will accomplish nothing. Mind you, I am not suggesting that anyone should tell them this.

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As for the latter, it wasn't just Church of Singularity and likeminded folks who wanted Earth's biosphere to stay dead - there was an entire philosophical movement dedicated to preserving the monument of destruction as a warning for future generations to never repeat the mistakes of the Old World.

This is why we take pictures, kids.

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It also brought an additional market value since every laser weapon enthusiast knew red lasers were the coolest.

I am glad someone around here has a proper sense of aesthetics and decorum.

An interesting transition chapter here, setting up the various social problems that NOVA Corp will have to deal with while also trying to consolidate their power and of course increase their profits. I can't help but notice of course that many of these futuristic social issues seem oddly similar to those of the present world... the more things change, as they say?

Now we're back on board, let's see where things go in the XXIII century.  8)
 

Offline Stormtrooper (OP)

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #13 on: April 02, 2022, 06:11:57 PM »
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Actually I meant to save the big battle sequence until completed but real life got away from me and I am just now catching up on my AAR backlog as usual.

Well, good to see you here! Well, looks like you're back about time I got back, too! How you manage to read so many AARs at once is still beyond me. Since February I barely had time to think I don't have time...

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why is hacking them a bigger priority than the battle at hand?  ???

And this is precisely why you'd never be promoted above wage slave essential frontline worker at N.O.V.A. Megacorps. By the time of the battle, Comitee was the least of the worries, the forces allied with it, though...

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Dodging the first volley of missiles was neat, tricking the enemy about your fleet speed and outwitting their attempt to guess the firing range worked out great.

I almost gave up on trying, thinking it's impossible for the enemy to not get a good safety margin, even if evaluating my speed incorrectly. And the only reason I did try was because I was too far away for the time lost to try to do this to matter in terms of closing in before next volley and so on.

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Third volley should have been devastating

Not neccessairly. I freaked out but the speed difference was big enough that I could just get turn around and force the missiles to impact on different increments.

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I thought some kind of ECM ships but ECM doesn't work like this

By that time I thought you were used to the fact that this AAr doesn't work like this :P Gameplay is only a loose suggestion, not something to follow strictly.

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I'm not sure why it makes sense to re-open the range after the PURGE strike, I'd think you'd want to push in once their sensors are blinded so you can shoot before they are back online. Still a very bold tactic since you risked losing the PURGE ships to a missile volley but the enemy did not respond in time.

It makes a LOT sense. The sensors aren't "blinded" after microwaves, they're destroyed as if they were hit by lasers. So no risk of them coming back unless the engangement is broken and hours pass.

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Looks like the enemy fleet at least had competent designers, spreading the lasers between all classes so that you cannot target only a few ships to eliminate the entire threat.

Well, I could target only TWO ships to eliminate the entire threat... Except those two ships were 75000t, 666 shields spread across 18 generators and 36 laser blasters each. I still have nightmares about them. :o

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This is a top-tier name and I applaud this man's parents accordingly.

You mean the first or the second one? ::)

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I sense that the author is still salty about that particular game release...

Well, more like an immortal meme for me at this point. And I wanted to play this game! This was supposed to be Witcher but with blasters and blue-purple neons... I hope the release of real-life cyberpunk will be better, though, as I'm not going to replace half my body only to see it glitching like hell by the time 2077 comes.

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Here we see the author using the famous tactic of interrupting a gripping and compelling narrative to advance a side plot while the readership hangs in suspense.

It was an accid...

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Truly this is a tactic known only to the great masters of the AAR art

Never mind. I didn't say anything! It was obviously all planned!

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You'd think Mars would know which side they are on if nothing else.

Well... Both N.O.V.A. Megacorps and Comitee of Humanity had been using Mars as "their planet" for doing shady business that's better kept away from the main population. Martians have every right to be confused about their allegations.

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I really like the effect you've gotten by using the black background and texture to look like cyberpunk computer images. I also wouldn't mind knowing which pack you used for the additional ribbon devices if you want to share!

I used this thing: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=12264.msg146029#msg146029
Circles for the planets, triangles and rectangles for blasters, railguns, hull and laser symbols as well as 01s for PURGE I drew myself in paint lol. Dark Phoenix, radar and logo of transhumanism I googled and then shrinked in paint to match expected size. It's a good little program, happy you've noticed these ribbons just scream cyberpunk like a blue-purple neon.

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"Exadev Aktieselskab" has a nice ring to it.

Looks almost like "Exadev Arasaka", so a corporation. Only alien-sounding for people not from far East. Maybe still worth a shot, though...

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that some evil corporation would plot to take over the solar system through some underhanded and grossly inhumane maneuver.

Since when exactly are corporations evil, employee?

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Absolutely shocked I tell you.

I'm shocked, too. To get a solution so quickly. Mind blowing. If only every institution was that fast to respond...

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Mind you, I am not suggesting that anyone should tell them this.

Whatever sent this fleet is worthy of blowing up, just to be sure.

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This is why we take pictures, kids.

You can deepfake a picture, but under no circumstances can you deepfake reality... Never mind. I didn't say anything.

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I can't help but notice of course that many of these futuristic social issues seem oddly similar to those of the present world..

Wait what? I've yet to see a laser blaster. Or an organization called Yellowpeace protecting radroaches and glowing mushrooms from terraforming. Any resemblance to real world events, movements and organizations is purely coincidential and to suggest otherwise is insane.

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let's see where things go in the XXIII century.

Towards utopia, of course. With every mistake possible to make already made, there's no way things can go wrong anymore. Absolutely nothing threatnes the bright future of humanity. I pretty much could end this AAR right now with the "and they lived happily for ever after".  8)
 

Offline doodle_sm

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Re: A.F.R.I.C.A discussion thread
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2022, 09:17:53 AM »
I'm slightly lost since I'm skim and full reading at different paces. Are you playing Quasar 4X solely or is C# mixed in there? Because some shots look like C#
Fun read!
Maybe, in the end, this was the best that any warrior could hope for. A chance to reconcile with your enemy, or, failing that, to fall in the pursuit of peace
 
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