Hull design

For what's not in 'Top Priority Game Design'. Post your ideas, visions, suggestions for the game, rules, modifications, etc.

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Prokonsul Piotrus
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#16 Post by Prokonsul Piotrus »

Some interesting ideas here. Some questions&thoughts:

1) this is the first time I see a game paying attention to 'surface ship area'. While logical, we need to think how this would translate into the game? Here is my idea:
- remember Space Empires 3? It divided the ship into armor, external hull and inner hull, with implications for what would be damaged first. Now forget the confusing armor part here and think: surface area/external hull/inner hull. Imagine some components have requirements that they must be on the surface and/or external (guns, sensors, engines) and that ship shape that determines the surface area determines as well the ratios of surface to external hull to inner hull (instead of 10/70/20 as all ships in SE3 had, note that numbers refer to the % of the space allocated to given area, not total space units).

2) As for basic hit points, I like the Full Thrust solution: chose one from several options (1-5, weak to strong, whatever), each one takes more space (meters, tons, whatver) - reducing space available for normal components - but gives more hitpoints (note that this NOT mean armor hitponts, just basic internal structure hitpoints). It represents how durable the basic hull structure is (hull integrity thingy).

I have a feel we will have the ship design wrapped soon. Lot's of good ideas floating around recently :)
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Bastian-Bux
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#17 Post by Bastian-Bux »

Surface area becomes very important if you use realistic sensor diameters. Wanna get some usefull infrared sensor data? Or even radio? Then prepare for fairly large dishes if you wish a high resolution.

Its also important if you wanna have a carrier, as you will need those starting bays. There is a reason why aircraft carrier look that funny.

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utilae
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#18 Post by utilae »

I think the main thing about the ratio between surface area and internal space is that a higher surface are is better for armor, while a higher internal space allows more components to be stored. Not all shapes will have both surface area and space maxed out, though there may be one shape that is clearly better because it has max surface area and space and it is this that we would beed to fix. Also I think that two variables (surface area and space) are not enough to allow each shape to have advantages and disadvantages over the other.

Master of Orion III
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combine hulls types

#19 Post by Master of Orion III »

like titanium and paladium ,there are no limits to combinations,chey can be from to 2 metals to 4 metals and beyond,10 basic metals can be a good start to get 50 combination for the final product, 20 for 100 :D
Antaren x ovnership

Bastian-Bux
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#20 Post by Bastian-Bux »

Actually there isn't one shape that has surface and volume maxed :).

There is one shape that has the most volume with the least surface: a sphere. Everything else just has other ratios.

And much surface isn't good for armor. Actually its bad, as you need more armor to have the same armor value.

Imagine it like this: you have a wall to paint. Your paint is enough for 50 m². So if you wanna paint a 100 m² wall, you gotta water down your paint a bit, making the color well, much less good. or you need to buy more paint.

The shapes do have more then just volume and surface that makes them different. Spine length is the third, allowing longer (=bigger) spinal mounts in ships with a longer central spine.

Also, lets imagine the following: a player decides that his main fighting ships don't get an interplanetary engine. This way he can save lotsa space for combat relevant modules. Now to bring his combat ships to the border, he needs a jump-ship. You know whats the best form for a jump ship, which only purpose it is to travel to a border system, drop the combat ships, and leave as fast as possible (to not get shoot down)?

Open frame.

Ugly form, but easy to link other ships into. Doesn't even have to be restricted to combat ships. Imagine a large jump ship, carrying 4 colony ships, and just dropping them where needed. Those colony ships could be much cheaper (=faster build).

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Geoff the Medio
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#21 Post by Geoff the Medio »

I think a major geometry concern is cross-sectional area.

Think of the Millenium Falcon. Notice how it's nice and flat when viewed from the side? That makes it much harder to shoot at than if it was flying with the flat side facing the shooter (at least with non-explosive / area of effect weapons).

Think also of radar-type active scanners that reflect pulses off of things. The more exposed perpendicular surface you have, the more radar signal will be reflected.

Practically though, I don't think issue of hull geometry are important enough to bother worrying about. Whatever characteristics are desired for a particular kind of hull can be chosen arbitrarily. If the modellers / artists want to make the hull conform to a particular shape because of this, they are free to do so. I doubt that a concept of different hull geometries will be explicitly in the game though... for players to choose between, or for behind the scenes calculations.

discord
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#22 Post by discord »

well, i'll just say these few things.

#1 system resources is NOT a reason to skip features, cant recall if anone tried that one here, but computers like numbers, and can eat through lots of them, aslong as it's pure math.

#2 KISS is imho just about the most lame excuse i have ever heard for cutting a feature(like this one, and several others), since it can be however complex as one would ever want, and STILL follow kiss, as the only part where kiss is a issue(imho) is when it comes to GUI...or time of the devs, of wich we at brainstorming have NOTHING to do with, since all we are supposed to do is chew out cool ideas, wich the devs can take in and use, or not.

#3 why is it everyone dislikes complex? i can understand a dislike for complicated since that can be downright annoying, but why this unyielding hate for complexity? although this HAS lessened abit since i first made my posts about how to do things back in the old days, and many of my ideas from then have reappeared, with some degree of acceptance...strangely enough...but if i say it, everyone(or close to it) goes out of their way to bash it down...

and about this thread.

nice idea, one that has potential, and should be in, one way or another, as it creates more interesting choices when creating ships.

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utilae
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#23 Post by utilae »

discord wrote: #2 KISS is imho just about the most lame excuse i have ever heard for cutting a feature(like this one, and several others), since it can be however complex as one would ever want, and STILL follow kiss, as the only part where kiss is a issue(imho) is when it comes to GUI...or time of the devs, of wich we at brainstorming have NOTHING to do with, since all we are supposed to do is chew out cool ideas, wich the devs can take in and use, or not.
Agree. KISS is sometimes over used as an excuse to scrap something.
discord wrote: #3 why is it everyone dislikes complex? i can understand a dislike for complicated since that can be downright annoying, but why this unyielding hate for complexity? although this HAS lessened abit since i first made my posts about how to do things back in the old days, and many of my ideas from then have reappeared, with some degree of acceptance...strangely enough...but if i say it, everyone(or close to it) goes out of their way to bash it down...
If complex can be made into simple, then it is obviously better. Also there is a difference between depth and complex. You are right in how things can be complex under the hood, but glossed over with a simple easy to use GUI.

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