My little HW fantasy

(BlueHair-OMO) #1

Dr. Frankenstein EDIT - Rather than tag a reply on the end of thread to bring it back to life… I thought it better to put it here at the top. Been gone for a while… back. Ideas for HW3 abound and would like mine to stay in the mix. :slight_smile:

WARNING - This is the Everest of text-walls. :open_mouth:

This did not fit in the Remastered forum, and it is not technical enough for the modding section, and there is no HW3 section. It certainly is fiction and a fan creation, since it has only existed on legal pads and in my head for the last decade or so.

HW3 -

TL;DR - An old fan’s opinion on a logical progression into HW3 or a mod, retaining elements of the old games while providing new ways of playing. Takes full advantage of current hardware and software capabilities. A new engine requirement that could spawn more related RTS games(under a world-spanning futuristic ocean, anyone?). A non-technical wish-list wall of text. Welcome to my world.

Well, it seems that the franchise is alive. The classics are playable by the masses again. The remaster looks to be amazing with a few tweaks. Multiplayer is on its way and has the potential to be something special in its own right. Mods have their own button in the start screen.

So, while we wade into the labor of love that is ahead of us… getting all the little squirmy bugs squashed… let’s take some time to share our ideas and concepts that have sat in hard drives and on notepads 'lo these many years.
Since HW2 came out I have had definite ideas, as I am sure many of you do as well, about what I would like to see in HW3. Since Gearbox has the keys to that particular kingdom now, and another game is well within the realm of probability, then we should get our ideas seen now.

With that being stated; here is part of over a decade’s worth of ideas, along with some fairly recent ones, abridged into just a minor wall of text. Many small influences from other games, HW mods, and sci-fi universes/novels/concepts. I have much more detail on every aspect, but since this has been my own little world I have no idea if anyone has any interest in any of this at all… much less individual ship stats. :slight_smile: Maybe some things could be applied to a future mod. All ideas are open for input and discussion, and I would like to help implement them into any mod.

There is no order or preference for any section. They all work together, and there is no telling what will catch one person’s interest or completely turn away another. There are sections on story arcs, campaign type, ships, mechanics, etc. There are spot definitions inserted so one doesn’t have to look for them. No hyperlinks.

All ship ideas are for the “Friendly” side of the campaign/MP. The “Enemy” is described elsewhere.

Homeworld, “Research”, and Immersion.

Futuristic, advanced races that have to re-invent the wheel(or ion cannon) every time a new adventure comes their way puts a hurtin’ on the old suspension of disbelief. The word, and concept of, “research” should be replaced with something else. Reverse engineering, data retrieval and re-tooling could all take a share of the simplified old-time “research”. There must be a word or phrase or acronym out there that fits the bill so much better. Design and Application is too clunky.

All needed information should already be in data banks. It must retrieved, applied to the need, and then tooling must be made(3D printing, micro-assemblers, nano, etc.).

If a new technology is encountered in the form of a ship/structure, then it is salvaged and reverse engineered. All data acquired would be stored for immediate or future application.

Other races/factions encountered could transfer data banks, for application at a later time.

The Strategic and Tactical Analysis team on board during the campaign would designate which techs have priority for application as required.

By using this paradigm, a player is applying already acquired knowledge to a given situation. The time and RU constraints have a more believeable explanation. Research should have no time or money limits for total success, so let’s do away with that world-view.

Some campaign missions could be searching for data banks in wreckage, or trading with bentusi/someone else. No need to fight every single time you load a mission. :slight_smile:

Instead of research modules and advanced research modules, players could build engineering, advanced engineering and reverse engineering modules. The teams on the modules use data and requirements to produce designs for the tooling process. It is a data ‘search’, not ‘research’.

There is not a research tree but a logical development progression.

Once a tech has been developed, it is available in all its iterations across all applicable ship classes and types. Example - Sprint Missile/Box Launcher tech allows Corvette, Frigate, Destroyer and Battlecruiser launchers.

Mechanical engineers build weapons. Civil engineers build targets. Once again our heroes are forced to forge their plowshares into swords with knowledge they already have on hand. The homage to Kith Somtaww.

Ships, Upgrades, Manufacture and Modular Design

HW2 almost got it right. Upgrades. But, they missed a step or two for obvious coding difficulty reasons. I do not like the magic upgrades everywhere.

By keeping each ship static, there is added granularity.

By allowing many variations to be built according to cost/time/perceived(!)value(not just the best every time), then even more granularity is added.

By adding experience(XP), a player can grow attached to each large ship(don’t worry, they’re numbered) and crew as they survive and gain better targeting/speed/etc. Temporal, no-cost, minor upgrades… possible for Frigate and larger only.

Ship caps -

The terms Command Bandwidth™ and Control Bandwidth™ are my way of addressing ship caps in a player-controlled manner. :slight_smile:

The Command Ship has a set amount of Command Bandwidth. It also exerts a certain amount of Control Bandwidth on its own. Command Bandwidth is used to set number/types of Carriers, Shipyards and Battlecruisers. Each takes a certain value of Command and provides a certain value of Control.

Carrier, Shipyards and Battlecruisers provide more Control Bandwidth, which allows control of numbers/types of ships. This concept is a novel unto itself, but hopefully you get the idea with this minor explanation. Similar to “power” in Homeworld Complex mod, and other games have similar functions.

If Control Bandwidth falls below levels needed for effective fleet-wide C3, then effects begin to cascade. First, drones, mimics, etc. will either fail or dock. Players then have the option to pre-select ship bandwidth priority in case of failure. Red, yellow, green or 1/2/3. Reds go down next, then yellows, and lastly greens. Out of Control ships can be given move or retire orders only, and will only fire in self-defense(point-defense/anti-missile). Use active ships to escort non-actives to rally point(campaign mission).

If Command Ship is lost, the total aggregate of current on-field Command points in use is transferred to the largest remaining Command-capable ship. This value becomes the Command limit for the remainder of the battle or until Command Ship is replaced.

Ships and techs - Techs and capabilities are drawn from data banks throughout the Homeworld history and factions. Kushan, Taidan, Somtaaw, Higarran, Vaygr, Kadesh, and others will contribute technical knowledge that has been tucked away on hard drives; and must now be applied to face the current situation. No need to attempt to re-invent the wheel, when by re-combining known techs the menace may be faced in time.

Once a technology is developed, it is available in all its iterations across the ship-class spectrum. Examples - Mimic/cloak reaches all the way to capital ship cloak upgrade. Sprint Missiles activates Sprints/Box Launchers from corvette to battlecruiser. The real pain comes when a player pays for the time and cost to put the goodies on hulls.

This section on upgrades will deal with Frigates and larger ships. It makes sense to explain this now, trust me.

Upgrades -

For all Frigate and larger ships…

All ships come out with decent armor. They are warships after all. They also have sufficient engine/power for their designed configuration.

All basic upgrades apply to all ships in a specific type(Frigate, Capital). No need to “research” how to apply armor for every Frigate class or every custom Destroyer. Just design the armoring process for each class. It costs enough time and RU to add it to each hull.

Instead of just two basic upgrades of armor and speed, I split them into something else. Defense and Engineering. Level 1 requires engineering module and level 2 requires advanced engineering module.

Defense -

Level 1 is an optional armor upgrade. Visually different look to each class. Bulkier, with an reactive armor look to them. This reduces speed due to increased mass.

Level 2 allows shields. An outer, visually shimmering coating that absorbs a high(but varying by weapon type, always some bleed-through) percentage of incoming fire, until its “health bar” is depleted. Then, all further incoming dps is transferred to the ship’s hull. Will replenish once incoming fire falls below its recharge rate. Reduces speed due to power requirements.

Engineering -

Level 1 is an engine upgrade. Visual addition of exhaust ports/nozzles. Brings armored or shielded ships back up to battery.

Level 2 is a reactor upgrade. This takes up more of the shield power requirements for better speed and slight shield boost. Changes visual appearance of both shield and engine plume(higher frequency/blue-shift).

Upgrades and Manufacture -
It would be possible to build ships with shield but no armor upgrade, and reactor upgrades but no engine upgrades. Or reactor and engine but no armor or shields(speed). Or armor and shields alone for faster production defense.

Each Frigate production cue would have three build choices… Min, Max(current) and Custom. Every upgrade/module added to each base ship hull affects RU cost and build time in small but cumulative increments. Such a simple statement… that changes so much. :slight_smile:

Example - You are low on RU and time, and someone is about to be in your face… Pump out some Minimum Assaults to hold the line while team-mates hurry over. Quantity can have a quality all its own. Sometimes one could be forced to play like the Soviets in '41, then 15-20 minutes later have the time and RU to splurge on the best like Reagan in the '80s.

Custom designs can be saved and taken along through the campaign and into MP.
Custom ship designs can be named for easy recognition. Example - “Avalanche” class all-kinetic, half-upgrades Battlecruiser.

All Frigates and larger can be either retired or refit. Refitting saves XP, time and RU(DOES take small amounts of both time and ru), but requires travel and docking. Refits only work “up” or “across”(weapons). Ships cannot be downgraded once built to a certain specification.

All ships of each type launch with a hull number corresponding to its LAUNCH order. Examples - All Destroyers would be numbered 01, 02, 03, etc. as they come out regardless of customizations or building facility or build que order. All Ion Frigates would have their own numerical sequence. If class numbers go over 99 due to losses, then it takes open slots in order(in case good old 01 is still kickin’). If every ship is tracked for XP, then it may be a good idea to have a way to know them on sight.

Experience(XP) - Frigates and larger(??). Provides slight, incremental upgrades in type/class specific areas(some areas not available in development or build).

Ships gain XP for dps delivered(not fired). XP boosts targeting(chance to hit), speed, shield stats, and/or self-repair rate… depending on ship class/type and possibly target type(huge wall o text).

Diminishing rate of return as XP grows. This helps reduce “farming” a crippled BC with Frigates for XP. Thought I didn’t see that coming didn’t you? XP LOSS for “friendly fire” force-fire. Saw that one too. :wink:

Small graphical/color-coded icon shows approximate XP level. All else is “under the hood” and can only be inferred from battle experience. “Gawd, did you see that volley!?! LMAO!! Good boys!”

Using ships, and keeping them alive = good… is all one needs to know. Fleet “morale” becomes an invisible but real part of the game. You keep your ships alive, and they will reward you with improved performance that you don’t have to pay for, and in some cases cannot buy at any price.

The Ships - Larger ships may seem stronger than they are, until one realises that all Frigates are the baseline and they have been nerfed in the dps dept, but have some nice HP upgrades. Epic battles should have lots of weapons fire. That means targets need to stay on the field longer. My designs are wrestlers, not boxers.

Microships make a comeback. Those Somtaww miners were on to something. Control Bandwidth is quite large for the size, but they are cheap and quick to replace.

Repair Bots - These would be module(6)-, frigate(6)- and corvette(4)-launched. No more latching issues. Control sphere less than attack drones.

Attack Drones - Module(6)- and frigate(6)-launched. Control sphere less than gravwell. Anti-strike and anti-vette. Not effective against missiles. High Control Bandwidth price for Module version.

Leeches - Most hilarious HW tech deserves a comeback. Plus, the campaign will need them.

Sentinels. - Guardians Of The Galaxy stole our ships. Sue Marvel for the price of a new engine. :slight_smile: We’re taking them back. Shield tech is a part of this concept, so they are a logical progression.

Strikes and Corvettes - These classes are too small for much customization, and the current models and types work well, with a few additions. Docking provides upgrade option if desired.

Strike Craft - Build/Launch in groups of four. Scout launches in pairs.

Scout - Same but prettier. Overdrive upgrade(HW1 speed boost)

Fighter - Same product in a new box. Six-unit build/launch upgrade(more time/ru/bandwidth).

Bomber - Slower, beefier, with a rear firing arc kinetic popgun. Think of a Stuka in space. Slower rate of fire but larger warhead. Anti-Subsystems upgrade.

Corvettes/Gunships - Build/Launch in squads of three. Armor and Engine upgrades available.

Gunship - Why mess with success? Flak-burst upgrade.

Pulsar Gunship - Same as above. Power upgrade that increases range and weapon strength for reduced tracking and ROF. Anti-frig upgrade.

Missile Corvette - Each ship fires a pair of mini-Sprint Missiles. Squad volley-fires at single Frigate or larger target, otherwise single-unit targeting.

Mimic - Only single build/launch corvette. No more suicidal, thorazine-laden pilots. Semi-autonomous bomb-laden drones with mimic tech. Can either perma-mimic, or cloak for a short while(loses propulsion). No cancel cloak. No special function for 10 seconds after cloak expires. Best against collectors, refineries, frigates with numbers.

Frigates - Frigate base tech is tooled into a construction bay. This allows construction of the base chassis, power plant, command section and engine. This hull has a base RU cost and build time.

Each type would “fill in” the frame with its special design, for differing RU costs and build times depending on type and upgrade(s).

Frigate engines can be targeted by pressing E and clicking on ship.

Frigate Types -

Assault - Bomb upgrade for limited anti-subsystem use. Otherwise similar to current models.

Ion - Because Homeworld.

Torpedo - Torps have to represent at the frigate level. Twin Standard Torpedoes. Medium range, medium speed, anti-vette and anti-frigate torps. Worst against shield, but effective otherwise.

Drone - Attack drones or repair bots as needed. Limited control range(tactical sphere less than gravwell), but not stationary. Goodbye Support Frigate, and helps to replace paper-thin workers/collectors in battle conditions. Replaces Flak and complements Torp.

Ramming - Many options in both campaign and MP for this brute.

Marine - If it cannot be salvaged or traded for, then it must be taken by force. We need that data!

Point Defense/Multibeam - Missiles/Torps inside engagement range take precedence over all other target orders. They despise missiles.

Box Launcher/Sprint Missile Frigate - The Box Launcher is a pillar turret with twin boxes, one on either side. The number of tubes in each box is dependent on carrying ship class. Frigate class has two turrets, ventral and dorsal. Two boxes with a single tube each, for each turret. Volley-fires four Sprint Missiles directly at target. Fast, medium range, single medium/small warhead, shield stripper, anti-frig, best missile vs point-defense, worst against armor. Boxes rotate to vertical and then retract partially into hull for reload.

Capital Ships - Greater customization comes into play once Capital Ships are constructed.

Modules - The blank space of an empty module “slot” represents plating that covers an empty space INSIDE the vessel. Modules are represented by a SLIGHTLY raised area with appropriate fixtures/animations. They are not a rash to be scratched off with ease. They are part of the ship. They simply require access to the outer hull area, or that is the only available space for center-of-mass specs. Modules may be placed at time of construction for a per-module savings(time/ru) but increase in total build time, or may be built/replaced at player’s choice after launch. Shields protect modules too, until they go down.

All Capitals have varying numbers of point defense. The base version is a kinetic gatling-type thats sprays a large cone of pellets into the target area. Best point defense against Torps, but worst against manned craft, due to predictive area targeting and range limitations.

ALL capitals can self-hyperjump. No module needed.

Carriers, Battlecruisers, Shipyards and the Command Ship may all build hyper modules that allow “wake-jumping” of non-hyper-capable ships.

Destroyers are only class that can self-jump, but not construct a jump module.

Capital refit takes place externally at refit gantries on upgraded Carriers, Shipyards or Command Ships. This process takes a small but finite amount of both time/ru that is scaled according to number/value of things altered.

Capital-specific upgrades - only available at construction or refit.

Laser point defense. Moderately good against missiles, better than base kinetic against strikes.

Plasma point defense. Least effective against missiles(lower ROF), but increased effectiveness against strikes/vettes.

Cloak. This is an internal upgrade that allows single-ship cloak for a limited time before recharge(longer cloak/shorter recharge than current). Reduces speed during activation, and no shields while cloaked(power consumption). No weapons can be targeted or fired while cloaked, or for 3 seconds after cloak ends. May be canceled at any time.

Carriers - Two classes. Carrier upgrades can be applied to either class. All facilities, modules and upgrade(s) included at order affect build cost and time. Carriers represent a specific amount of Control Bandwidth™, which dictates the number/type of ships that can be effectively controlled.

Carrier-specific upgrades - only available at construction or refit.

Strike craft production facility. Can be damaged but not destroyed by improved bombs from bombers, heavy 'vettes or assault frigates. Damage results in slower/paused production rate.

Corvette production facility. same as above.

Frigate production facility. Not available for escort carrier. Otherwise same as above.

Refit. Places a framework with articulating gantries/arms on dorsal side to refit frigates(fleet carrier refits internally)/capital ships. Fleet carrier refit duration is less than Escort. Ship to be refit docks with gantry and locks on for the duration of refit process. No cloak is possible during refit.

Escort or Light Carrier - Inspired by Vaygr design, but smaller and faster. Frigate speed or better. Single production facility for either Strike craft or Corvettes, built in at ship construction(can be damaged for reduced/paused productivity, but NOT destroyed, by imp. bombs). No frigate construction option. Must refit to change production facility. Single module slot(CAN be destroyed). Port and starboad kinetic point-defense.

Fleet Carrier - Inspired by Higarran design, but larger. Any two of three production facilites(Strike, Vette, Frig), set at time of construction(can be damaged but not destroyed). Must refit to change production facilities. Three module slots. Port/Starboard/Dorsal/Ventral point defense clusters.

Destroyer - Base Destroyer hull has a set RU cost and build time. Player chooses weapon load and upgrades from currently available techs, or chooses Min/Max. Each weapon chosen, engineering upgrade and defense upgrade affects both RU cost and build time to each hull constructed to those specifications.

Destroyer-class Weapons -

Standard Torpedo - The one we all know from the Torp Frig. Anti-corvette split, or anti-frigate single warhead.

Heavy Torpedo - Vaygr-inspired Anti-frigate or anti-capship weapon. Single heavy warhead with longest weapon range(beyond most standard ship sensor ranges), medium speed.

Box Launcher/Sprint Missiles - Turret with twin two-round launchers. Fast, medium range, single warhead, anti-frigate/shield. Best missile against point defenses. Boxes rotate to vertical and turret retracts into hull to reload, then re-acquires target and volley fires.

Kinetic Turret - Twin guns comparable to current DD weapons.

Ion Turret - Single beam turret comparable to/< Ion Frigate.

Plasma Turret - Fast-tracking twin energy lance turret for anti-corvette. Limited use against both frigates and strike craft. Vaporizes strikes if it can get a hit, and will quickly damage frigates that get too close. Will fire on Torpedoes, but not Sprint Missiles.

Destroyer hardpoints - Can be damaged by improved bombs. Most weapons(other than forward launcher) are =/< than a single frigate’s worth of dps.

Forward Launcher - choose one - Four standard or two heavy torpedo.

Ventral Hardpoint - choose one - Ion, plasma or kinetic turret, dual regular torp(vertical launch), single heavy torp, box launcher.

Dorsal Pair - Must be a matching set of any of the available weapons.

Target weapons by pressing W and clicking on ship, or zooming in for specific targeting. Target engines by pressing E and clicking on ship.

All Destroyers have single port and starboard point-defense clusters for limited missile defense. A single Torp Frigate is wasting its time, two won’t dent the self-repair, but trying to stop a full Box Launcher volley from a custom Destroyer is another kettle of fish.

Examples -

Extreme - All-Heavy Torp DD pair launches 5 each. Full-on Box Launcher DD is on same vector but closer to target. Volley 12 Sprints and 4 standard torps as the heavies pass by. Overwhelm point defense and strip any shields as the heavies arrive.

Balanced - Four standard torps forward, plasma turret ventral, two ion or kinetic turrets dorsal.

With armor, shield, engine and reactor upgrades… maybe throw in the cloak and a point defense upgrade… each Destroyer has the capability to cost a mint and take just under a week(seemingly) to construct.

A pair of praetorian drone frigates set to repair would follow something like a Max DD around forever. But, properly supported, a pair would be a force of nature.

Battlecruiser - Higarran-based, but improved. There is no “rushing” to this behemoth, and it cannot be just thrown around. It represents a specific amount of Control Bandwidth™ that boosts the number/type of ships a player can effectively control. It is a task force keystone that better be the last unit to go down, not part of a trio of lumbering yolo attackers. The time and investment required to construct the better versions encourages a balanced fleet mix.

The base hull has three primary weapon hardpoints, two secondary weapon hardpoints, two module slots, a small hanger bay(5 vette groups or 5 strike), and five point defense clusters(two ventral). Can build all types of available probes, and scouts. All weapons, modules and point defense may be changed with a refit(keep an upgraded carrier handy), for a modest time/ru cost. Engineering and defense upgrades may never be removed, only added or left alone. Modules may be retired and rebuilt at any time.

Module slots are on the ventral side.

Primary Weapons -

Forward hardpoint choices… choose one.

Trinity kinetic cannon. Horizontally-aligned version of the Vaygr weapon.

Four heavy torpedoes.

Modified Phased Array. Progenitor tech, downsized and combined with current Ion tech(hence the ion unlock) to be compatible with current reactors. Second only to heavy torpedo in range. From moment of firing sequence start(animation) until 3 seconds after firing ceases, no shields or non-missile weapons fire(power consumption). 10-15 second weapon recharge time. The mother of all snipers, or the logical conclusion of the Ion Frigate.

Dorsal/Ventral hardpoint choices. Mix or match. These hardpoints are slightly farther back on the hull than current, to balance the port and starboard secondaries that are in a more forward position.

Ion turret. Single, not dual as current.

Unity kinetic turret. Single Trinity-class round fired from a tracking turret.

Twin heavy torpedo vertical launcher.

Box launcher. Twin four-round boxes per turret. Eight-round Sprint volley per turret. Suitable against anything except numbers of Multibeam frigates. Makes heavy shield users and upgraded point defense users cry.

Secondary Weapons - They are the same weapons that each Destroyer may choose from. Modular means just that.

Hardpoints - Port and starboard, near edges. Forward of center. Dorsal side. This makes non-torp versions strong to the front, weak to the rear and ventral, half to the sides. Two ventral point defense to defend the critical solo hardpoint and module slots.

No Standard Torps, but all others allowed. Matched set.

Examples -

Extreme -

Max Box Launcher version(Thera-class) fires 24 Sprints to the front quadrant, along with whatever is in the forward slot. Even with the comparably smaller warhead, that may leave a mark. Would strip a DD’s shields in a flash of light and then begin to gnaw on its bones.

Max Kinetic would fire five Trinity-class rounds and twin DD turrets to the front. Then reload and crack at it again.

Max Ion would have to stutter-fire due to phased array power requirements. A one-two punch of energy fire.

Balanced -

Four heavy torps forward, ions/kinetics for primary, plasma turrets on secondaries. Almost what we have now.

Other Capitals -

Shipyard - Constructed by Command Ship. Almost as large as CS. Can self-refit and change configurations as required. Can build all ship production facilities. Strikes build/launch forward. Corvettes and Frigates build/launch from seperate port access points. Capitals emerge from starboard. Refit gantry runs along entire ventral side. Five module slots. Six point defense clusters.

Command/Base Ship - Taidani horizontal Toaster inspired, with a strong influence of Somtaww modularity and Higarran smoothness of line. Form follows function. It is a barely mobile C3 node. Can be replaced by a Shipyard at incredible costs in both time/ru. Externally constructed at refit gantry. Six Module slots. Eight point defense. Can self-refit. Can build all ship production facilities, and refit gantry.

Siege Cannon - Smaller, optimized version of the Somtaww acquisition, in a free-flying hull(framework with bridge and engines). 40% original power, same range and falloff. Four point defense. One module slot. One of few single-use tech developments. Very high Control Bandwidth costs.

Non-combat Ships -

Worker. Collects resources, and salvages inert debris/ships/etc. Shares frigate engineering/defense upgrades.

Refinery. Two collection points, Two point defense. Shares Capital engineering/defense upgrades.

Probes. The usual suspects.

Modules -

Hyperspace. Allows wake-jumping of any ship within control range.

Cloak. Allows group cloak of any ship(s) within effect range.

Fire Control. Increases weapon effectiveness inside control range.

Drone Bay. Launches six repair bots or attack drones to any ship in control range. High Control Bandwidth needs and only one per Capital.

Engineering. Allows stage 1 development of techs.

Advanced Engineering. Allows stage 2 development of techs.

Reverse Engineering. Allows foreign techs to be intergrated into designs.

Gravity Well Generator. Same as current.

The Campaign, and the Foe.

So, let’s recap. We have kicked the Taidani off our Homeworld. One little mining Kith made the Beast their Bitch. The Vaygr got slapped into next week. What could possibly go wrong now that would cause such a ruckus?

In my humble sci-fi fan opinion, the only way to re-capture an epic scope is to put it ALL at risk. The Beast was a tiny particle that got lucky for a few weeks. This has been around for millenia, and is coming for everyone now.

An intelligent, space-faring collective appetite. There is no talking to it. Everything it encounters is Enemy, until it is made Food… or Dead. The enemy of my enemy is my friend takes precedence over some territorial fueds. When your children are being eaten, priorities change.

And the contestants are…

Fred Saberhagen’s Berserkers/von Neumann machines. ALL life must be ended, and all planets make more berserkers. That would bring the factions together.

Uber Beast/Borg. Could be done without too Beasty/Borgy an approach. Or could go whole-hog Cataclysm homage… “WEeeee liiivvvvve”. Beast 2.0.

Arachnids. Steve White’s(The Shiva Option) Bugs work much better than Starship Troopers’, or the ones from Ender’s Game. Telepathic, so no communication possible at all.

All could easily mimic the Bandwidth coding, so therefore by killing a control node, one reduces the effectiveness of vast swaths of the enemy. And there will be vast amounts.

I am toying with the idea of two enemy, and being able to occasionaly take the pressure off by luring them into fighting each other for a mission every now and then.

Whichever enemy is present, they all have the same trait in common. They ADAPT. Quickly. Reduced refit time/costs, increased build time/costs. The reason for upgrades, refits and variable ships is that the enemy did it to you first. They build strikes and vettes, refit frigs and larger whenever possible.

Start to win a battle, and they seem to be retreating. They are just going to adapt and come back with the counter to what you showed them. Quickly. In large numbers, or a few super-ships… whatever opening you give them.
Instead of checkers it becomes chess. Instead of rock, paper, scissors… it becomes rock, paper, scissors, lizard, spock.

Cloak, sensor distortion and dust clouds could be used to hide a counter to the counter, and then gain the upper hand.

The enemy cannot refit ships that are now debris.

The enemy uses no new applications of physical laws, or esoteric weaponry. Some data can be acquired from their ships/debris, but reverse-engineering is straightforward.

Leeches, Mimics, and the Siege Cannon are needed to help stem the tide. Cannon shot detonates, killing a swath. Yay! Then sensor manager turns red with the next oncoming wave. Jaw drops.

Class-for-class, enemy ships are slower. Sometimes the only saving grace is being able to possibly outrun them, and get into cloak or a dust cloud.

The Campaign -

Semi-linear, branching. 30+ missions, of which a player may see 25+/-.

Branches may be determined by player outcome or player choice, or combination of the two… depending on mission and place in campaign.

Example - You need tech from the Kadeshi.

You choose an early encounter. They do not believe you, and run you off with heavy losses. Campaign continues, but you have nothing to show for that mission but some scarred ships. Not every mission is a win/loss. Some days are just a bitch.

You get a middle encounter. They are about to run you off, when the enemy appears and does not so much desecrate the Garden, as consume it. You have an ally of convenience now. Their spinal beam tech completes the phased array development, and the newest swarmer techs help microships and strikes go faster. Gravwells are better now as well.

You get a late encounter, with or without the early one. The Garden is ravaged. A damaged lone Kadeshi MS is all that remains. They cry and give you the data you require in exchange for tech and resources.

Almost all factions become more interested in assisting The Alliance once they have experienced The Foe first-hand. Help, run, hide, fight. They will pick one. It is up to the player to make them choose wisely. Talk, trade, or beat some sense into them.

A mission may have minimum requirements, as well as optional objectives/rewards. Do you dare to sneak out of the dust to retrieve that derelict? Or just call it a day and move on?

The Bentusi are the deus ex machina in HW. They will trade for any techs that you must have, but didn’t manage to acquire yet, before things becomes untenable. They will make you squirm and squeal a bit, but they will eventually show.

This is not a slow build-up to ever-larger fleet sizes. Some missions require the player to leave the combat zone and explore, while other factions hold the line. Some epic battles in the middle will rival the end battles. Capabilities would change though.

Three end-game battles for three enemy home systems. Order is chosen by player. The longer a battle waits, the stronger the enemy is when you reach them. Different factions, under AI control, assist in each battle.

Vaygr/Taidan, Bentusi/Kadeshi, Higarran. Escort the last Kadeshi MS as it kamis into the final enemy control node, firing its spinal beam all the way in. “For the Garden!” Watch a Vaygr BC save the galaxy.

I have more on every topic and then some.

Player control over the game, and replayability, were my watchwords. Player even chooses the final battle area, and could choose who fires the last shot.

An engine that encompasses all this could jump-start many new games in the 3D RTS genre.

Oceans. World-spanning ocean on an alien planet with islands as blocking terrain.

Gas Torus around a neutron star/red giant pair. Microgravity but atmosphere and truly huge volume.
Other space games.

Multiplayer - Homeworld Compleat. Everything but The Foe. Kushan, Taidan, Somtaww, Beast, Higarran, Vaygr, Alliance. Chop 5-10% off Alliance HP and good to go. Give everyone infection vaccine. Alliance reverse-engineers other techs to Alliance standards.

If you climbed that wall of text, then I salute you!

Thank you for your attention, and chime in if you wish. I wouldn’t put it out if I didn’t want company. :smile:

HW1 races vs HW2 races. Balancing analysis and thoughts
(Aged) #2

That’s a pretty good start, Blue. Please post some more when you’ve had some time to think about it a while.

(ratamaguru) #3

Lots and lots of good stuff in there. Looks like you’ve grabbed a lot of eve and if I didn’t know better, I say you were a Sailor, a specific bread too, a bubble head.

I like the commas bandwidth. Sounds similar to the SU system that HW:C brought into the mix.

I like the fill in the hull concept. That makes for years and years of RTS play.

I like the multi carrier types.

I will though, as respectfully as possible, with all the love and care I can muster for a senior citizen, stab you in the face if you don’t remove that dirty concept of building fighter squads instead of individual fighters, and allowing us our own firmations and tactics.

Also, I think you could take a lot of the care and thought you put into vette and above customization and apply it down to strike craft. Look to the 18 frame for inspiration. It’s now the Navy’s single platform for multiple mission types, from a2a to a2g to ewar. I think Catacylsm had a really cool concept with the acolyte and a little expansion on munition types the way you applied to destroyer builds would be an easy sell.
Doesn’t matter the saga, it’s always the fighter jock who is the hero.

(BlueHair-OMO) #4

Thanks for the input rata. :slight_smile: I am a military grog, but never served. Yes I have a penchant for naval tactics/strategies as applied to space.

I prefer the single strikes over formations as well as a general rule, and as a HW1 groupie.

However, this concept is an attempt to take it to “the next level” of RTS gameplay… and I have concerns about player overload.

Formations and tactics would OF COURSE be a requirement for the engine itself. Too many other games could benefit.

My idea allows each squad to be set to a different formation and tactic. So, you can still make Battleballs, and still have epic dogfights and more micro opportunities than some would or could handle.

By keep strike formations at 2/4/6 and allowing all squads built to be combined into super-formations by numbered grouping, then group orders, one gets both worlds.

Even numbers keep the center of any formation empty, negating the bounce and weave that I have despised since '99. The five ship claw is a bad habit that should be un-learned. Everyone deserves a wingman. Six ship level2 claw or 8(4+4), 10(6+4), 12(6+6), and so on are available for granularity. Mix-n-match types(scout/bomber/fighter) set to slowest group member would still be available.

Just no odd numbers until losses accrue, and there would never be a strike craft in a formation center slot.

I would want all other HW1 strike behaviors emulated to the closest extent possible.

My micro-ship list, and the amount of customization at the upper levels, led me to lean towards simplification in the strike craft area, again to prevent overload.

I have gobs more info that needs to be transferred from legal pads, and then integrated with knowledge I have gained since the notes were written. Much of this covers strikes.

I welcome any discussion that may draw attention by the devs. :slight_smile: If even a small part of one concept would make it into HW3 or a new engine, I would be over the moon.

Thanks again for your attention.

I would never eliminate our hallowed formations and tactics, but to bring the game up in scale, one needs to reduce the workload at the lower end.

EDIT - Oh, and rata… if I had just had the presence of mind to use registered mail to myself all those years ago… I would be able to prove that EVE took my ideas, not the other way around. :smile: Convergent concepts, but they had the resources to realize theirs.

(BlueHair-OMO) #5

OK, so it will be assumed that the broad strokes are apparent from the initial post. If anyone has anything to contribute or critique please chime in. Any requests for more detail in areas not covered will be welcome.

In deference to Aged asking for more and rata being the first non-OMO from the community to have input… I will add depth starting with the Littlest Ones… then move into the whys and wherefores of my Command and Control Bandwidth concept.

Let us assume that a balance as been reached between HW1 and 2 production times in MP, and use that fictional calculus as a baseline. My four ship squads would build faster than 5 ships HW2 but slower than HW1 singletons. My six-ship Fighter upgrade would be as fast to build as HW2 five-ship squad.

Ship Progression and Upgrades - Small to large, simple to complex was my watchword. The added depth that is already present could very well be a strain on the average RTS player; not to mention the poor coders who would curse my name. Small ships would be effective throughout any game/battle, but less time/attention intensive if desired. Micro-management on small MP maps would still be rewarded, but once things go big… the littlest ones can be sent on their own with minimum orders. XP for small ships would require increased tracking, and re-calculation by losses accrued, that would almost certainly be a strain to code or run in the possible numbers that my Command/Control bandwidth concept may allow. Could be the difference between an 11 million dollar engine and a 13 million dollar engine for all I know.

Customization and upgrade depth increase with ship size.

Microships have no upgrades, other than small reverse-engineered speed upgrades specific to their class. These upgrades are automatically incorporated for no ru and very small time costs upon docking with any hanger/mission load.

Strikecraft have one upgrade per ship type. Simple progression of engineering that leads on to bigger and better things. This all ties in to lower time/RU costs to engineer everything, because it all costs more to place on hulls.

Overall capability is not always the same as what is required or even possible at that moment.

Corvette/Gunship-class ships have up to three upgrades. Speed, armor, and special type-specific.

These are the Ships of The Alliance, in order of size…

Microships - . All bot-targetable ships would have 4/6/8/10/12/16 bot latch points. Band-box target select would spread Leeches/repair bots evenly. Microships have a high Control Bandwidth cost for their size. This reflects the amount of C3 capability required to control semi-autonomous drones over vast distances. And to keep you from flooding the map with clouds of Leeches.

Repair Bot - Build/Launch in squads of 6 for Frigates and Modules, or 4 for the Repair Corvette. Frigate Control Bandwidth - 14, Module - 14, Corvette - 9. Can be deployed anywhere within launching unit’s control range to targetable ship(worker or larger). Will detect enemy Leech attached to assigned latch point. Auto-replace losses(10 seconds each??). Once in place, dis-allows enemy Leech at that latch point. Will remain in place after full repair, until given new orders.

Leech - Build/launch in squads of 4 from any Fighter Production Facility. Control Bandwidth -10 per squad. They can only be force-targeted by the enemy, until improved sensors are engineered and deployed. No damage notification as they do that thing they do, until damage levels reach 40% of total target HP. Someone HAS to notice when almost half the ship is gone. Must be visually acquired. Very limited sensor ability(relays little intel beyond immediate area).

Attack Drone - Build/Launch in squads of 6 from both Frigate and Module. Control Bandwidth - 18 per squad. Auto-replace losses (10 seconds each??). Can attack any ship within launching unit’s control range. Will not target torpedoes or missiles. Effective against strikecraft, less so against corvettes. Only effective against Frigates in numbers. Point Defense can hurt them if they can hit them. Kadeshi swarmer tech adds a nice swoop and roll that keeps them safer(already present in MP).

Sentinels - Only manned Microship. Build/launch in squads of 6 from Fighter Production Facility. Control Bandwidth - 15. Shield Upgrade. Single less-than-fighter/more-than-scout plasma weapon. Speed comparable to fully upgraded Frigate/DD to allow non-fantasy escort speeds without slowing the escorted ships down too much. Can escort Gunships or even Scouts… at Sentinel speed. Shield interlocks as special guard function. Can target torps but not Sprints. Total interlocked shield strength increases as number of Sentinels increases, to maximum coverage(18???)

Drone Bay Modules on Capital ships can be damaged to reduced the number of drones deployed, until destroyed. Modules are stronger, shields/armor may be present, and improved bombs have a slower RoF… so it won’t just pop.

Strikecraft - Built in squads from a Fighter Production facility. All strikecraft squads may be combined into numbered groups, which will over-ride all single-squad formation/tactic stances for the group orders/stances. All ships within single build-related, but un-assigned, squads will all target the same ship, while staying in formation.

@ratamaq My Base Frigate hull is the F/A-18 of Homeworld3 my friend. :smile: Every different one will have the same family resemblance, and across-type refit is one of the things I am trying to incorporate. Take out the Drone bay and put in Torp bays for a slightly less time/RU(recycle bonus) than building a new Torp Frigate, while retaining XP. I like the way you think though. It is just my opinion that Strikes in space are too small to be multi-taskers.

Twenty Groups possible in total. CNTRL/Num 1-0 and CNTRL/ALT/Num 1-0.

So, a 24-ship scout ball could guard a Frigate while another 18-fighter ball did the same. They would auto-fire from that sphere until given orders to target.

Happy now, all you strike types ? :smile: Put out the torches and use the pitchforks for hay.

Scout - Build/launch in pairs. Control Bandwidth - 3. Turbo speed boost upgrade(vette engine unlock). Large sensor area, small-but-well-ranged kinetic gun. Fastest ship in game, far outstripping the scout of the Foe. Only strike craft that target Torpedoes(not sprints), because they can detect torps at a range that may allow interception… and they have the speed to catch them.

Fighter - Build/Launch in squads of 4. Upgrade to build/launch in squads of 6(vette production unlock). Control Bandwidth - four-ship build - 8, six-ship build 10. RU and time increase for six-ship build. The ship has a mid-power, mid-range, forward-firing plasma weapon, with decent speed and very good maneuverability(side-strafe/reverse vector targeting firing pass). Very effective against bombers and other fighters, less so against Corvettes/Gunships(damage) and Drones(tracking/RoF). Starbuck would be happy in one.

Bomber - Build/Launch in squads of 4. Upgrade to Improved Bombs(unlocks all imp bombs). Control Bandwidth - 12. Two-person crew ship, with forward bomb launcher and rear kinetic scout gun turret. Large, slower cousin to the HW1/2 bombers. Upgrading a squad to Improved Bombs reduces rate of fire, while increasing range, of the bomb launcher and slightly reduces the top speed of the bomber. The standard Bomber is useful against both Frigates and Capital ships, but is the most vulnerable strikecraft to Point Defense. The Improved version will attempt evasive tactics between each shot during each attack pass on a Module/ship. Stance or tactic settings will never effect rate of fire, only time spent in firing position/range. Improved Bombs is more a matter of evasive gyros, targeting software and launcher gimbal improvements, that allow the “Womprats in Beggar’s Canyon” shots that are required while staying alive long enough to make a few passes.

This is one I thought of a while back('04)… but feel it is maybe too much. Rata asked for more strikes though… :smile:

Stealth Bomber - Build/launch in squads of 2. Control bandwidth - 10. No defensive armament. No Improved Bomb Upgrade. Speed upgrade. This ship is a Standard bomber that has replaced the rear crew and gun with Sensor Distortion tech. That’s right, it is a mobile Sensor Distort probe for itself and itself alone. Completely visible to the naked eye, but only Proximity Sensor, or equivalent, tech will put it on any screen. Used in conjunction with a cloaked carrier… well imagine what you will…

Corvettes/Gunships - I have no idea why I put the number three on my original post regarding vette squads. They Build/launch in pairs or singletons. Everyone gets a wingman unless it would detract from the mission. Refit/upgrade requires internal dock, time/RU. The speed upgrade makes the armor upgrade the same top speed as a minimum build, plus 3%. The armor upgrade drops top base speed about 5%.

Gunship - Build/launch in squads of 2. Control Bandwidth - 10. Dorsal and ventral twin-gun turrets. Armor, speed, flak upgrade.

Pulsar Gunship - build/launch in squads of 2. Control Bandwidth - 12. Dorsal/Ventral single plasma turrets. Speed. armor, weapon upgrade… which reduces effectiveness against smaller craft while increasing against frigates.

Missile Corvette - Build/launch in squads of 2. Control Bandwidth - 12. Twin sprint missiles(70% standard sprint range). Single target/volley fire on frigate or larger. Will not target/cannot hit less than corvette. Speed, armor, missile range upgrades.

Repair Corvette - Build/launch singly. Control bandwidth - 11. That is 9 for the set of four repair bots, and 2 more for the corvette. Each corvette launches four repair bots to any target within control range. Auto-replaces losses(10 seconds?).

Mimic - Build/Launch Singly. Control Bandwidth - 8. Largest un-manned ship. Can perma-mimic any asteroid, or any ship up to and including frigate-size. Can completely cloak for a short duration, which costs all drive function, and delays control of mimic after cloak. Large on-board bomb that detonates on contact with enemy ship. Speed, armor and bomb upgrade(more power). Proximity Sensor tech counters mimic and cloak.

A note on Detonations, Splash Damage, Scuttle, Kamikaze, and Other Fun Tactics and Effects…

Explosions HURT. All the big ones do.

Reactors going critical HURT.

A level2 speed Destroyer Kamikaze into a shipyard will HURT. Contact Damage, Detonation Damage, Splash Damage… all for you. Get those gravwells up and keep up a screen.

The eternal build-up detonations that we now enjoy will NOT cause damage. They are the WARNING to GTFO.

“LOOK OUT!! She’s gonna Blow!!” should be a common refrain on teamspeak.

Frigates will pop any strikes within their pitiful detonation radius, while taking a good swipe at vettes.

Detonating Destroyers can take a nip out of nearby frigates, while obliterating any close-in vettes/strikes… but they had enough warning to escape the radius.

Carriers and Battlecruisers, Shipyards and the Command Ship, will all do commensurate damage to nearby ships/structures. More damage over a larger effect radius, with more lead time to escape through hyper or sidereal space.

You DON’T want to be there in Frigates or smaller when a Command Ship blows for ANY reason. Death, Scuttle, Kami… they all give the same DPS and area of effect. Win the battle, lose the war kind of thing if you stick around in a team game. The final desperation gravwell and scuttle… “From Hell’s heart I stab at thee… for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee.”

'Nuff Said on that…

Bandwidth of the Command and Control varieties - Numbers are subject to vigorous debate please. One person cannot do this. You can see the progression of Control Bandwidth from fighters to vettes, so a logical extrapolation from there is where I am.

While similar to both the Cataclysm Support Units and Complex “Power” concepts, I hope that this concept offers more player control over how much and what to build, and when.

The Command Ship is the font of all Command Bandwidth, unless destroyed. All Command Bandwidth currently in use is transferred to next largest ship until/unless Command Ship is replaced.

Command Ship - Command Bandwidth Provided - 150. Control Bandwidth Provided - 500.

When a Carrier, Battlecruiser, Shipyard or Siege Cannon is placed in a build que: A certain amount of Command Bandwidth is allocated from the total available. Every one of these ships constructed/launched, other than the Siege Cannon, then provides more Control Bandwidth.

Escort Carrier - Command Bandwidth Required - 10. Control Bandwidth Provided - 200.(15 max number of escorts for 3000 max = 300 Leech squads… laugh now. 300 fighter squads… start stroking your chin)

Fleet Carrier - Command Bandwidth Required - 20. Control Bandwidth Provided - 350.

Battlecruiser - Command Bandwidth Required - 30. Control Bandwidth Provided - 200.

Shipyard - Command Bandwidth Required - 40. Control Bandwidth Provided - 450.

Siege Cannon - Command Bandwidth Required - 40. Control Bandwidth Provided - 0.

I will scale the Frigates and Destroyers in a later post, as well as show off the Graviton round that the Siege Cannon has as an option.

Thanks for your attention,


(ratamaguru) #6

Ok good, your face is safe from me pick stick then.

(ratamaguru) #7

All the fighter ideas sound great. I like the stealth, you could even expand it into an ewar ship. Sensor distortion, or even things like bandwidth disruption, EMP, false returns (make the group return more signels so in sensor view it looks like 20, but line of sight from live pilot you realize there is only 5.

I fell back to the acolyte idea from Cataclysm when you talked about the fill in the hull concept. I really think BD had a cool idea with linking tech, and combining it with the torpedo idea you had for frigs, imagine the single ships having the option for 2 corvette busters, or 1 frig buster per unit, then the ACV having the option for 2 frig busters or 1 super cap buster. I thought the concept of fighters having to return to rearm as appose to the endless supply of plasma bombs, with the survivability to fight their way back like a true strike fighter was awesome. I hate to see it die.

Every successful sortie gains the pilot XP to spoke of.

(BlueHair-OMO) #8

I was always considering making Missile Corvettes and Flak-upgraded Gunships re-arm after a set number of volleys(maybe 6-8). My missile vettes are anti-vette and anti-shield for frigs and up, so it would have to be a dirt-simple auto-process to make it viable. The flak upgrade should be nasty, so it makes sense to dis-allow constant firing.

It is possible to resurrect more of my force multiplier ideas.

Underway Replenishment/“Support” Frigate - Dorsal/ventral kinetic turrets with single scout gun in each. Can dock up to four Gunships/Corvettes along port and starboard twin nacelles. No RU cost for reload. Five second reload time.

If the concept of Strikecraft FUEL were to be implemented, then the URF would really shine with six strike pads, like our old HW1 Support Frigate.

All non-aggressive strike craft would auto-bingo upon reaching bingo fuel to closest dock-capable ship. Disengage, extend, return to base. The commander who sets down his baton to take up a rifle is failing as a commander.

Micro the battle, not the refueling process. :wink:

My kinetic weapons are all small for the mounting hull’s size, and the rest are energy weapons. Even toyed with laser scout guns.

I wanted to keep the bombers energy-based for just that reason. I toyed with re-arming, with better one-use bombs for the trouble, but I could tell it would get too clunky with all the other things I am/was already adding.

The Strikecraft type can be easily made modular.

Base Frame/chassis. It has a base RU/time cost, and base HP stats.

Recon has large main center engine nozzle, and two smaller engines to port/starboard. Recon arrays dorsal/ventral.

Fighter has just large main nozzle. Beefier construction to hold the plasma lance generation equipment.

Bomber has just the port/starboard engine nozzles, with same size dorsal for three smalls. Ventral is forward-firing launcher. Aft is scout gun turret covering 40 degrees X/Y and 50 degrees +/-Z . Nice cone of defensive fire, but lousy accuracy during maneuvers.

Stealth Bomber has same engine configuration and launcher, but no engine trails( :slight_smile: )… and the engine glows are narrow and buried in the hull. Only truly visible from behind. Narrow thick/thin double band for custom colors… otherwise black. Entire hull is smoother, and well… stealthier.

There… four missions from one hull with different configurations. I cannot see where refit to different config for strikes would ever be a thing unless it was a small carrier-only MP battle.

No ship-type caps at all… just Control Bandwidth.

So I stand by single-use, build-to-suit for the teeny guys.

We can play with our all-Ion versus all-torp Destroyers and Battlecruisers for consolation.

For the record, I loved my Acos and ACVs. :slight_smile: I was one of the very early-adopters of the 11 minute, 12 missile aco, five worker kill tactic. lol Three walls of four… three workers down. Sphere attack on fourth. Kami on fifth as the Acos die to defenses.

Those were the days when Steelwolf was #4 on that ridiculous internal “ladder”. hehehe

EDIT - Bandwidth Disruption is a no-no. Hilarious … yes it would be. Drifting ships. ha ha ha. But also overpowered.

It would just be rock/paper. Disruption/Hardening techs. Techs should scale all the way up without breaking things. I like granularity if I am going to envision a 12 million dollar engine. LOL.

(ratamaguru) #9

I claim credit for inventing that tactic :wink: , although I remember it being way faster than 11 minutes? I rolled with 20 because that is what you could get out with a hanger engineering start lagging the weapons by 1 minute then missle research.

The only early strike that was faster was 8 mimics lagging the weapons the same but quantum research was way faster, but halo projector took longer than fighter iirc.

And I remember that list. My stats weren’t as impressive at #16 even adding the wins with my alt names just put me above Devilen, but I’ll never forget how ironic it was that win the list came out, I as a guru had ‘420’ wins :smile: . Yours weren’t too shabby, but I still think a combination of Gold, Snow and RogerWilko carried you :P. I couldn’t even join your 4v4 games due to lag. I also remember one of you stating “here’s how you beat Rat, build 8 hives, launch hives, his PC will crash and you win!”

(BlueHair-OMO) #10

No one has posted for me to just shut the he11 up, so we press on…

An old toy, re-imagined…

Siege Cannon - Only 40% of the size of the Somtaww acquisition, it has been altered to suit a multi-role capability. Command Bandwidth Required - 40. Control Bandwidth Provided - 0. Requires all weapon techs to be unlocked before being available, as it uses some of each. Four Point Defense. One Module slot. All capital ship upgrades may be installed/refit. Slowest build time and largest RU costs for all upgrades of any ship class. In other words, largest time/cost difference between Min/Max.

The new version does not fire spheres of energy. Each specific round is a physical object that has a unique function. They show up on scanners once in sensor range. The high-energy round is the only one that “pings” in sensor manager during its flight(the code treats them as ships).

Kinetic tech unlocks the barrel/firing mechanism. Magnetic railgun tech to propel the round.

Energy tech unlocks the detonation properties of the high-energy round, and the Plasma Mace round.

Missile tech unlocks detonation properties of the high-energy round, as well as sustaining engines for all rounds.

Shield tech unlocks containment fields for high-energy round.

Gravity Well tech unlocks Graviton round.

EMP tech unlocks EMP round.

The rounds -

High-Energy Round - Multiple reactors that are designed to overload, wrapped in shielded containment fields, with some engines on the back. A smaller version of the original round in function. Largest total damage potential of all rounds. Damage does not fall off with distance of unit travel, but there is a maximum range/time limit before overload and detonation. Highest time/RU cost, shortest range.

Plasma Mace - Upon reaching target area, or receiving a stop order, this round will aim and fire three repeating pulses from 12 vertices at all enemy ships in range. Each pulse is capable of destroying any gunship/corvette(70% chance to hit), or damaging any larger ship. The round then detonates in a smaller area for lesser effect than the high-energy round. Mid time/RU cost, longest range.

Graviton Round - Upon reaching target area, or receiving a stop order, this round activates a gravity field that draws ships towards it for 10 seconds, then detonates. The better the engines/reactors, the better the chance of overcoming the field and escaping the blast radius. Mid time/RU cost, medium range.

EMP Round - Upon reaching target area, or receiving stop order, the round emits a large EMP burst that disables all craft in range. Friendlies included. It then detonates in a small area and with low damage. I am toying with the idea of it being able to re-charge and fire again and again until destroyed. Initially small but increasing window between each burst, with a weak HP total. Non-lethal area denial weapon. Lowest time/RU costs, medium range.

Destroying a round causes detonation at full strength.

Each round has a time/RU cost that differs for each type.

Each round must be built and fired before the next can be constructed.

Rate of fire is determined by round choice. As soon as a round is ready, the weapon can be fired.

Any active cloaks near the Siege Cannon are nullified for 10 seconds by firing discharge.

Think of the cannon as a production ship that is set to “stay docked” with a hanger space of 1. The cannon launches each round as a ship on its mission.

Hyper costs are highest of all Alliance combat ships. Only Shipyard and Command Ship cost more.

Very slow in sidereal space, but very good alignment capabilities.

I wanted to make it a game-changer but not a win button. Plus facing the Foe requires a quick-response counter while forces are built up/refit in late campaign.


Think of a Vaygr BC and you have the general size and volume of the Siege Cannon. A frame that holds four point defense, a bridge, a module, and keeps the engines on the back. All else is cannon.

(BlueHair-OMO) #11

Area Effect, Non/combat-Force Multipliers, Ammo and Fuel. This is a wonderful exercise to organize all this stuff for me. :slight_smile: I have notes and scribbles scattered hither and yon that keep cropping up. They lead me to re-examine old views in light of how things could work.

ALL area effects would interact with ALL units in range. Friendly/neutral(asteroids) included.

Each activation draws a ray from point to all units in range.

Detonation damage has a “blast shadow” based on unit size and position.

Detonations deliver damage over longer periods of time as size of detonation grows.

Examples -

Destroyer is next to a frigate as it blows. Just outboard of the destroyer is an 8 ship claw of strikes, with the center four behind the destroyer and outer four in direct line to detonation. The outer four would take damage, while the inner four would be protected by the destroyer hull.

Command Ship detonates over a period of three seconds, possibly fully draining shields of nearby ships and transferring remaining damage to armor.

Shield/Armor… Damage/HP - I think the safest most stable approach is to give every weapon two damages… shield(S) and armor(A). Shields are walls that take all damage until they drop. No fancy on-the-fly calculations for hundreds of events. Once incoming DPS drops below shield recharge rate, it begins recharge. Once it reaches 25%, the shield visual effect and HP bonus take place. HP bonus scales up as shield charges.

Weapons would each have a different S/A value differential.

Examples - Sprint Missile - 40S/20A, Standard Torpedo 30S/60A, Heavy Torpedo - 50S/130A.

Kinetics would be slightly better against shields(absorbing impacts drains shields).

Ions would be slightly better against armor(physical contact with beam).

Plasma bolts(turrets), lances(strikes) and bombs(bomber/assault frigate) would do equal damage.

Detonations do equal damage to shields and armor.

Force Multipliers - Area of effect covers many of these, so I thought they would complement each other.

HW3 is to HW2, what HW2 was to HW1 tech-wise. Better, stronger, more developed. The Taidan have improved gravwell/graviton tech. Shields no longer require an entire frigate for a small time of activation. That kind of thing. Logical progression.

Hyperspace Inhibitor - This is both an effect and a Module.

The Module does what we all know it does, without cost but subject to activation, once constructed. It inhibits ALL hyperspace travel(friendly included) within range while active. It requires no recharge time per se, and has no upper limit to activation time. It does require 5-7(?) seconds cool down after de-activation to be re-activated.

The effect is generated by the Module, and the mobile Gravity Well Generator(while active), and the Graviton Round(when target reached) fired by the Siege Cannon. This also inhibits all hyperspace travel(friendly included) while active.

Gravity Well - Oh, the Taidan have been busy. Graviton research has yielded a new type of well. Control Bandwidth Required - 16. High RU/time cost. Faster than a base frigate. It can be given move orders like any other ship, until activation. Then it turns into a giant, slow-motion “singularity grenade”, as well as a hyperspace inhibitor. Go watch “Thor, The Dark World” if you need a visual. People keep stealing my ideas years after I have them. LOL

ALL units/structures/asteroids/etc within effect area will be acted upon. The effect attempts to draw all objects to the point for 15(??more?) seconds, then detonates for small splash damage over a frig-like area. ALL ships will auto-attempt to burn directly away from effect point. They are too busy to take your call at the moment, please try again later. No orders will be accepted.

Nearby Strikes are done. Farther out strikes can push with upgrades and lose ground slowly enough to possibly stay outside detonation range. Vettes are done unless speed upgraded and well-positioned. Frigs have a chance to escape with engine/reactor upgrades or just tank it. Dessies and above can ride it out with damage, and a hard veer off-course towards effect point.

The effect size/activation time will match how long it takes to suck a bomber down its gullet before it pops.

The Graviton Round is a super-sized conspicuous-consumption version of the gravwell, fired at insane speed over a long distance to a fixed point.

Cloak Generator - This is an internal upgrade, Module and mobile Generator.

The upgrade allows self-cloak for a set duration, with recharge being approximately twice activation.

The module allows area cloak around carrying ship.

The Generator is an unarmed Frigate-class ship that allows area cloak. Control Bandwidth Required - 18.

All cloaks have same activation/recharge time, that dis-allows dual permanent cloak, but allows triple.

C3 Node - Frigate-class. Command Bandwidth Required - 5. Control Bandwidth Provided - 75. Unarmed nugget that can only be upgraded with armor and shields. Slow in sidereal space. You just lost a Carrier, and need some Control Bandwidth sooner rather than later…

I want large asteroids, with bases, like in some of the mods. All my maps, campaign and MP would be on average 30-75% larger, with commensurate room for larger “terrain” items. The largest asteroids could be points of contention, as well as inhibit direct fire. Chasing each other round and round an asteroid could very well be a thing.

Asteroids CAN be damaged/reduced, but the amount of DPS required is rather large for the payoff. Damage an asteroid enough and it splits. Each remaining piece is worth 40% of the original, and has same total number of docking points but spread over two rocks…

A task force sufficient to take out one of my HW3 patches has much better things to do. Ramming Frigates, Graviton Rounds and Gravwells could do more disruption, by throwing them about, then anything else. A Gravwell/Graviton throws asteroids it catches directly away for a distance adjusted for size, when it pops. Not far, and not much damage, but adds to the pain.

Asteroid Base - Frigate-class. Command Bandwidth Required - 16. Unarmed, slow. Upon reaching proper sized asteroid, it drills into surface, leaving a docking bay visible. It then produces 1 collector’s worth of RU from the asteroid every 30 seconds and provides collector docking/transfer point, as long as undamaged.

Takes up a dock point on asteroid.

Can be extracted, and sent to another suitable asteroid/retired if/when asteroid is depleted or otherwise desired.

Multiple Asteroid Bases(of any side) may be installed on any Very Large Asteroid, up to total number of dock points.

Damage reduces productivity.

Can be destroyed like any other ship, just has only one face when deployed.

If asteroid splits due to damage, then base takes damage/may be destroyed.

It is like a Refinery/Controller that anchors and supplies RU.

Ammo and Fuel -

Underway Replenishment Ship - Destroyer-class hull. Fast base speed, and lower than destroyer base HP. Much better than the frigate I was thinking of. If ammo/fuel were to be used, then this would be a required ship on larger maps. Control Bandwidth Required - 30. Large RU/time costs for size/class. All destroyer-class upgrades available. This is not a merchant ship along for the ride. Twin point defense… forward/dorsal, aft/ventral. Twin plasma turrets… aft/dorsal, forward/ventral. Port and starboard gantry assemblies that deploy as needed by docking ship class(es). For when you don’t want to risk a carrier just to supply beans and bullets.

Center/ventral bay for strikes and vettes. Gantries are for frigate and larger.

No repair/refit. Just fuel/ammo.

I toyed with the ammo idea to compliment strikecraft fuel.

All ships that use missiles and/or kinetics would have a “health bar” that would decrease as ammo is fired. Scaled by ship size/ammo type/number of weapons. Once blinking yellow, rate of fire decreases by 50%, and it auto-bounces for closest refit/replenish capable ship, unless ordered otherwise. When bar reaches zero, all ammo-dependent fire ceases.

This means balancing ammo-dependent weapons to be stronger than their energy-based cousins. Have to make up for going back to the trough.

But wouldn’t that be fun?

The upgraded Unrep ship shouldering up to a destroyer to port and a pair of frigates to starboard, so they can take on another load of torps… while a squadron of strikes docks for fuel.

As long as docking algorithms can be made efficient, then this concept could add quite a bit of commander input options, while retaining automatic function if desired.

All my refit/repair/re-arm/refuel ideas take place over very small, yet finite stretches of time.

The hard choices would come with refitting multiple things at once, as the total scales up. Danger in staying locked in that embrace for too long.

Much would depend on rock-steady docking/speed-matching math and code.

As long as a unit is not set to aggressive or kamikaze, it should do its best to get back to fuel/ammo on its own, after telling you so.

More to come…

(BlueHair-OMO) #12

Just in case newer HW fans have come around since my hiatus, thought a little necro was not out of line. :slight_smile: Put a necro edit at the top post to warn others…

Oh by the way… I’m back. o7