Missile/Projectile Weapons

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labgnome
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Missile/Projectile Weapons

#1 Post by labgnome » Thu Jan 02, 2020 3:45 pm

The idea of missile or more generally projectile weapons has been floating around this forum for a while now. So I thought I would make an official trhead on the subject to discuss the idea.

Missile Weapons would be unaffected by species traits. Missile Weapons would have ammo, the missiles themselves, that could be exhausted when outside of supply. The available missiles would be launched on the first round of combat and not do damage until the next round. The missiles themselves would be destroyed upon use, unlike fighters. After that any reserves that can be launched are until they run out of ammo. Missile weapons could also be intercepted by direct fire weapons and fighters. Missiles themselves could intercept fighters. Missile weapons could also target planets depopulating them (like bombardment) and damaging infrastructure.

I would like to propose the following weapons in conjunction with these ideas.

Rocket Launcher
  • Tech: Aggression
  • Slot: external
  • Shots/Round: 1
  • Ammo: 2
  • Base Ship Damage: 3
  • Base Depopulation: 0.2
  • Base Infrastructure Damage: 1
Missile Launcher
  • Tech: Missile Launchers (Prerequisite: Aggression)
  • Slot: internal
  • Shots/Round: 2
  • Ammo: 4
  • Base Ship Damage: 3
  • Base Depopulation: 0.2
  • Base Infrastructure Damage: 1
Torpedo Launcher
  • Tech: Torpedo Launchers (Prerequisite: Missile Launchers)
  • Slot: internal
  • Shots/Round: 3
  • Ammo: 9
  • Base Ship Damage: 3
  • Base Depopulation: 0.2
  • Base Infrastructure Damage: 1
Plasma-Bomb Launcher
  • Tech: Plasma-Bomb Launchers (Prerequisite: Torpedo Launchers)
  • Slot: internal
  • Shots/Round: 4
  • Ammo: 16
  • Base Ship Damage: 3
  • Base Depopulation: 0.2
  • Base Infrastructure Damage: 1
The rocket launcher can be thought of as optional, or a replacement for the mass driver as the starting weapon. Otherwise they are intended to be balanced against fighters in number of shots per round with missiles taking out bombers, torpedoes taking out fighters and plasma-bombs taking out interceptors.

To go along with the weapons, I would like to propose the following technologies to improve missile damage.

Technology: Fission Warheads
  • Prerequisites: Missile Launchers
  • Increases ship damage from 3 to 5
  • increases depopulation from 0.2 to 0.4
  • increases infrastructure damage from 1 to 2
Technology: Fusion Warheads
  • Prerequisites: Fission Warheads & Fusion Generation
  • Increases ship damage from 5 to 9
  • increases depopulation from 0.4 to 0.8
  • increases infrastructure damage from 2 to 3
Technology: Antimatter Warheads
  • Prerequisites: Fusion Warheads & Antimatter Tanks
  • Increases ship damage from 9 to 15
  • increases depopulation from 0.8 to 1.6
  • increases infrastructure damage from 3 to 4
The improvement technologies are meant to balance against shields, meaning shields should counteract missiles if you have been keeping up with the technology.
All of my contributions should be considered released under creative commons attribution share-alike license, CC-BY-SA 3.0 for use in, by and with the Free Orion project.

Ophiuchus
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#2 Post by Ophiuchus » Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:00 pm

At the current level of combat system I would make missiles basically the same as fighters but skip the collect step.
That would means a generic missile launcher launch bay part and specific hangars which provide missile capacity.

I intend to add combat bout awareness for FOCS conditions for freeorion 0.5. That would be enough to support the minimal implementation - only target enemies on the last combat bout.

Else we need something to determine if the missile is still in flight and self destruct the missile when it hits. If we say a missile always flies a single bout (so one chance to shoot it down before it hits) we could either split doing damage for different weapon systems (i.e. first resolve all weapon damage but missiles, then remove destroyed missiles, then resolve missile damage, then remove all missiles). Or we need to track on which bout the missile was launched. I think i would prefer the second implementation as it gives more options.

I think depopulation and different damage levels are not interesting enough to warrant the extra complexity.
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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labgnome
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#3 Post by labgnome » Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:27 pm

Ophiuchus wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:00 pm
At the current level of combat system I would make missiles basically the same as fighters but skip the collect step.
That would means a generic missile launcher launch bay part and specific hangars which provide missile capacity.
I was hoping to have missiles as a single-slot weapon system. To further differentiate them from fighters. However if we need launchers and bays for programming reasons I can re-work the idea.
Else we need something to determine if the missile is still in flight and self destruct the missile when it hits. If we say a missile always flies a single bout (so one chance to shoot it down before it hits) we could either split doing damage for different weapon systems (i.e. first resolve all weapon damage but missiles, then remove destroyed missiles, then resolve missile damage, then remove all missiles). Or we need to track on which bout the missile was launched. I think i would prefer the second implementation as it gives more options.
I will say that I envisioned missiles only being "in flight" for one round. With the idea that you could potentially run out of missiles before the turn in over. However I will defer to your judgement as to what would work best.
I think depopulation and different damage levels are not interesting enough to warrant the extra complexity.
I can see that. The idea was to be able to bombard with missiles, which I still like, but I'm not committed to the concept.

I do think that different damage levels are important to keep the weapons relevant throughout the game. I want them to remain useful as a system. So they need a way to up the damage of the warheads.

Also if you, or anyone, has an alternative proposal for missiles feel free to post it here.
All of my contributions should be considered released under creative commons attribution share-alike license, CC-BY-SA 3.0 for use in, by and with the Free Orion project.

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em3
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#4 Post by em3 » Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:30 pm

There is one problem with exhausting missiles and current combat system.

Enemy empire could harass a fleet using a single scout. The fleet would fire all the missiles allowed by their launch capacity on turn one. This overkill is okay for weapons with non-depleting ammo. But for missiles it would mean throwing them into garbage.
[...] for Man has earned his right to hold this planet against all comers, by virtue of occasionally producing someone totally batshit insane. - Randall Munroe, title text to xkcd #556

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labgnome
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#5 Post by labgnome » Thu Jan 02, 2020 11:12 pm

em3 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:30 pm
There is one problem with exhausting missiles and current combat system.

Enemy empire could harass a fleet using a single scout. The fleet would fire all the missiles allowed by their launch capacity on turn one. This overkill is okay for weapons with non-depleting ammo. But for missiles it would mean throwing them into garbage.
Missiles, like fighters would be re-supplied when in supply range. Also most missiles would have more ammo than fighters.
All of my contributions should be considered released under creative commons attribution share-alike license, CC-BY-SA 3.0 for use in, by and with the Free Orion project.

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Oberlus
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#6 Post by Oberlus » Fri Jan 03, 2020 7:52 am

labgnome wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 11:12 pm
em3 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:30 pm
There is one problem with exhausting missiles and current combat system.

Enemy empire could harass a fleet using a single scout. The fleet would fire all the missiles allowed by their launch capacity on turn one. This overkill is okay for weapons with non-depleting ammo. But for missiles it would mean throwing them into garbage.
Missiles, like fighters would be re-supplied when in supply range. Also most missiles would have more ammo than fighters.
Sometimes you fight out of supply. em3's comment is relevant. With fighters, you gather them after combat, whether you are out of supply or not, so the scout exploit would not affect fleets out of supply. With missiles it would be terrible.

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em3
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#7 Post by em3 » Fri Jan 03, 2020 11:17 am

The only solution I can think of is that the missiles that have no valid target (that is, all enemy targets were destroyed and/or incapacitated during first bout) should be recoverable after combat.
[...] for Man has earned his right to hold this planet against all comers, by virtue of occasionally producing someone totally batshit insane. - Randall Munroe, title text to xkcd #556

Uriuk
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#8 Post by Uriuk » Fri Jan 03, 2020 1:19 pm

Please relogin, Elon Musk! Only he is capable to reload fuel into already used rockets.

Ophiuchus
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#9 Post by Ophiuchus » Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:37 pm

The good thing of the two-part solution is that launch capacity and the number of missiles can be set independently. And reusing the fighter implementation means there is already launching and shoot-me-down-support.
em3 wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 11:17 am
The only solution I can think of is that the missiles that have no valid target (that is, all enemy targets were destroyed and/or incapacitated during first bout) should be recoverable after combat.
Well its solvable in the backend. The basic idea being to add a launch missiles step after the combat universe is created (so that you can check if there are targets which match the missile combatTargets conditions), you launch the missiles (i.e. add them to the combat universe and deplete the capacity) only if there are targets. No need to recover missiles. AFAICR fighter launching is handled the same as shooting weapons, so the information if there are targets might be one bout

Maybe it is more KISS to drop the "you can shoot a missile down" requirement. Then we could treat missiles basically as expendable multi-shot weapons "doing damage the same bout they are launched" - instead of normal launching of a missile object each shot would determine if there are targets. If there are valid targets and there are still missiles, apply damage, reduce missile count, and write a combat log entry. If there are no valid targets do nothing.
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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labgnome
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#10 Post by labgnome » Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:52 pm

Ophiuchus wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:37 pm
Maybe it is more KISS to drop the "you can shoot a missile down" requirement. Then we could treat missiles basically as expendable multi-shot weapons "doing damage the same bout they are launched" - instead of normal launching of a missile object each shot would determine if there are targets. If there are valid targets and there are still missiles, apply damage, reduce missile count, and write a combat log entry. If there are no valid targets do nothing.
I like the idea of missiles being able to be shot down, as that means "point defense" is something that exists. However I will ask: would allow missiles to be a single-part weapon system, rather than two part hanger and launcher system? As that's closest to what I was envisioning.

If not I' still not completely opposed to the idea. However, I would like to keep point defense a thing if possible.
All of my contributions should be considered released under creative commons attribution share-alike license, CC-BY-SA 3.0 for use in, by and with the Free Orion project.

jinlanid
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#11 Post by jinlanid » Sat Jan 04, 2020 2:47 am

What about make missile don't attack "passive ship" ( ships that can not attack ). If a ship have a weapon, then it's expensive enough, that worth a missile attack.

And maybe make missile don't attack fighters, or at least add a button to allow player to set whether allow missiles to attack fighter.

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labgnome
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#12 Post by labgnome » Sat Jan 04, 2020 9:35 am

jinlanid wrote:
Sat Jan 04, 2020 2:47 am
What about make missile don't attack "passive ship" ( ships that can not attack ). If a ship have a weapon, then it's expensive enough, that worth a missile attack.

And maybe make missile don't attack fighters, or at least add a button to allow player to set whether allow missiles to attack fighter.
Those are interesting ideas, but they fall more under the idea of targeting priorities, something else that's been discussed a lot, but is I feel a seperate subject from missile weapons.
All of my contributions should be considered released under creative commons attribution share-alike license, CC-BY-SA 3.0 for use in, by and with the Free Orion project.

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Oberlus
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#13 Post by Oberlus » Sat Jan 04, 2020 10:12 am

jinlanid wrote:
Sat Jan 04, 2020 2:47 am
What about make missile don't attack "passive ship" ( ships that can not attack ). If a ship have a weapon, then it's expensive enough, that worth a missile attack.

And maybe make missile don't attack fighters, or at least add a button to allow player to set whether allow missiles to attack fighter.
It would not fix the problem: instead of sending an scout, you send a scout with a weapon. So fleets with thousands of missiles would waste all their "ammo" into a single ship.

Ophiuchus
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Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#14 Post by Ophiuchus » Sat Jan 04, 2020 9:07 pm

jinlanid wrote:
Sat Jan 04, 2020 2:47 am
What about make missile don't attack "passive ship" ( ships that can not attack ). If a ship have a weapon, then it's expensive enough, that worth a missile attack.

And maybe make missile don't attack fighters, or at least add a button to allow player to set whether allow missiles to attack fighter.
Such a thing should be handled by combat preferences - which do not yet exists.
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

Ophiuchus
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Posts: 1587
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2014 10:01 am
Location: Wall IV

Re: Missile/Projectile Weapons

#15 Post by Ophiuchus » Sat Jan 04, 2020 9:16 pm

labgnome wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:52 pm
Ophiuchus wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:37 pm
Maybe it is more KISS to drop the "you can shoot a missile down" requirement.
would allow missiles to be a single-part weapon system, rather than two part hanger and launcher system?
That would be possible with or without the "you can shoot a missile down" requirement. Less direct code reuse I guess, but I guess that part of implementation is not hard.

You did not give a game reason why you want the single-part weapon system.

With the two-part weapon system you could scale number of attacking missiles and number of missiles independent of each other which i think is a bit more interesting.

One could also combine these two ideas, missile launcher with batteries included ;) and another internal part which e.g. refills missile launchers after battle (simple FOCS implementation) or adds extra capacity (maybe tricky FOCS implementation or some extra backend implementation).
Any code or patches in anything posted here is released under the CC and GPL licences in use for the FO project.

Furthermore, I propse... we should default to four combat rounds instead of three ...for the good of playerkind.

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