An interesting problem...

SabreAce

Rear Admiral
I believe a Broadsword can manage two jumps without refueling if necessary - I seem to remember specifically trying to fail the Noveya Kiev mission where you jump out and refuel prior to attacking a supply depot/listening post by jumping back without refueling with the Clydesdale.
 

jaeger

Spaceman
Yeah its two jumps, Jump outsystem and jump back to the carrier. I just replayed wc2 for the umpeenth billion time and am debating on it again =X. But I do wonder why they told you to refuel? There was no need. When you jump out to meet the courier ship that gets blown up you do not refuel. same jump. Maybe they were implying that the jump was a longer one? I duno. By the way Why dont we see the broadsword in more remakes =D ( hint hint)
 

SabreAce

Rear Admiral
I believe you actually lose fuel in the Broadsword from the rather long trek across the system from the jump point to the Kilrathi station, whether you use autopilot or fly there manually. As a result, if you don't refuel on the way to the attack or before jumping out, you won't have enough to make the second jump. Definitely remember that fuel readout flashing red during a few playthroughs of that mission.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
jaeger said:
Yeah its two jumps, Jump outsystem and jump back to the carrier. I just replayed wc2 for the umpeenth billion time and am debating on it again.
Uh, right - strangely enough, I forgot about that courier mission. Two jumps it is.

But I do wonder why they told you to refuel? There was no need.
Sure there was - how else would they show off a mid-flight refueling sequence? :)
 

BradMick

Vice Admiral
i should note that, aside from the jump fuel difference (and only the tarsus has the little boost to it) the tarsus's stats are identical to those in privateer. its not some super ship, its just got a little extra jump fuel to better facilitate the 'scout' of 'merchant scout' and thats it. everything will play like the original. you run out somewhere and don't plan on getting back, you can strand yourself.

i wouldn't so much say the tarsus is like a demon though, but it is certainly a step up from the ailing hunchback, and a decent stepping stone until you can get the specialty Camel (which ain't cheap) or the Phalanx or Hydra (depending on your combat style). While its definately less maneuverable than the Phalanx, the Hydra mounts 6 missile hardpoints to the Phalanx's 2. 3 guns on the Hydra plus 2 turrets, 4 guns on the Phalanx. The Hydra has plenty of armor and shields, the Phalanx is relatively thin in that department. Basically its speed and maneuverability are meant to save it.

The camel is slow with a single turret, 2 guns, and 4 missile mounts. The tarsus mounts 2 guns, 2 missiles, good speed, pretty good manueverability. really, its just a transitional ship before you get a camel.

oh, and by hardpoints, i mean that literally. each ship mounts missiles, not missile launchers. the tarsus's missiles are where the two launchers were located. so its one on each side of the hull. also, i should note (man this is going way off topic, sorry but i figured i'd explain) that missiles are very effective to make up for the fewer available to you. they're a bit pricier, but certainly affordable. you'll never be without (unless you're really awful at budgeting)

anyway, this has gone long enough, hope that clarifies some things.
 

Howard Day

Random art guy.
Yeah, we decided early on that we didn't want to go with the originals' "launcher" mentality. It didn't jive with the WC1 loadout examples, for one - and it really shouldn't take more than one missile to destroy a WC1 era fighter. Or at least it shouldn't take more than one to seriously damage it. Anyhow - plus there's the cool factor of both managing your missile loadout, as well as seeing your ship decked out. Woot!
 

Ijuin

Admiral
So this means that the missiles will be more like in other WC games, in which one missile hit will kill the lighter enemies?

Quatro: What I meant by "keeping up with a Scimitar" is that a player should not find himself outclassed by the enemies that he must fight in the early game. I picked the Scimitar merely because it has the lowest known speed of any human-faction non-bomber in the WC1 time period. The Tarsus with max upgrades should be able to take on a flight of three or four Grathra IMO if it is to be the only vessel to allow the player to penetrate deep into Kilrathi space.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Howard Day said:
Yeah, we decided early on that we didn't want to go with the originals' "launcher" mentality. It didn't jive with the WC1 loadout examples, for one - and it really shouldn't take more than one missile to destroy a WC1 era fighter. Or at least it shouldn't take more than one to seriously damage it. Anyhow - plus there's the cool factor of both managing your missile loadout, as well as seeing your ship decked out. Woot!
Funny you should mention this. LOAF and I briefly discussed hardpoints and launchers in another thread, and he pointed out that while most ships in Priv have launchers, you can see missile hardpoints on some of the military ships (specifically, the Stiletto). So, I think it might be that this is a difference between mil-spec missiles and the ones available on the civilian market. Of course, it's up to you to decide if this difference also exists in 2654... heck, maybe you could have hardpoints, as well as some kind of early missile launcher as one of those extra-expensive pieces of equipment everybody wants to get :).

It would also be cool if you didn't make the missiles kill stuff in one shot... but instead created two types of missiles - the ones the civilians can buy, and the reall ones the military uses. Needless to say, the military missiles would deal as much damage to other ships as they did in WC1... but the civilian ones would deal less. I think it's pretty clear that this was the case in the Privateer era - while, in one part of the universe a privateer whines about having to fire ten missiles to kill a Dralthi, in other places military pilots flying Hellcats and Arrows find that one missile is enough for one Dralthi.

Ijuin said:
Quatro: What I meant by "keeping up with a Scimitar" is that a player should not find himself outclassed by the enemies that he must fight in the early game. I picked the Scimitar merely because it has the lowest known speed of any human-faction non-bomber in the WC1 time period. The Tarsus with max upgrades should be able to take on a flight of three or four Grathra IMO if it is to be the only vessel to allow the player to penetrate deep into Kilrathi space.
This is completely the wrong approach, though. Even if the Scimitar is nearing retirement in 2654, it's still a top-of-the-line military fighter. To expect a scout ship to be able to fight with it (let alone with a bunch of Gratha) is wrong. In Privateer, the unupgraded Tarsus had a great deal of trouble dealing with more than one Talon - and while we know very little about the Talon, its backstory does imply that it's not a brand new fighter.

All that this kind of mindset achieves, ultimately, is an erasure of differences between different ships. We should be able to feel the difference between an old pre-war Kilrathi fighter flown by a privateer, and a top-of-the-line Gratha flown by an active-service cat. The former should be something a Tarsus can deal with... while the latter should spell trouble for even the toughest civilian ship, in the same way that an F-16 would spell trouble for a Cessna, even if the Cessna in question was armed with the same kind of weaponry an F-16 has.

This, of course, leads to a great deal of difficulty balancing the game. But ultimately, it's worth it - treat the source material with the respect it deserves, and you'll soon realise that what you first perceived as annoying problems that must be resolved by changing stuff vis-a-vis the source material are in fact opportunities to implement great and unique gameplay.
 

Howard Day

Random art guy.
Quarto: Amen! I want the player to freak out the first time he sees a Jalthi. And then consider suicide when he sees a Ralari. The Jalthi is a BIG fighter, and those 6 guns are freaking intimitating.
When it comes down to it, the single missile hardpoints just *feel* more like WC1. The idea that you've got to watch what you fire - and that if you pick the wrong time and miss, well, then, you're just flat outta luck. Now, this is of course personal bias. I have talked it over with BradMick and I'm pretty sure he agrees - Launchers just seem too modern. (the conversation was a while ago, so my memory is a tad rusty)
And as for being able to toe-the-line with a top-of-the-line Kilrathi ship with an ace pilot? I hear the Landriech is hurting bad for talented stick-jocks... Hmm. Just a thought. :D
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Howard Day said:
When it comes down to it, the single missile hardpoints just *feel* more like WC1. The idea that you've got to watch what you fire - and that if you pick the wrong time and miss, well, then, you're just flat outta luck. Now, this is of course personal bias. I have talked it over with BradMick and I'm pretty sure he agrees - Launchers just seem too modern. (the conversation was a while ago, so my memory is a tad rusty)
Yeah, that's why I suggested that you could make them a technology that appears during the game - but whatever you decide is fine, since the fifteen years between 2654 and Priv are more than enough for the technology to change.

I'd very much like to see civilians using missiles inferior to those used by the navies, though. This would give you opportunities for all sorts of neat stuff - getting paid in missiles by the government for an odd job here and there, or looking for a smuggler with contacts at the factories producing military equipment, and so on.
 

BradMick

Vice Admiral
Yup. No worries there Q, the civvie missiles are definately inferior to the Military ones. Damage wise and speed/maneuvering wise they're not at all comparable to their military equivalents.

And yup. All the stats are the same as in the original games. Well, where they can be. A ship turning at 5dps is a bit....slow, heheh. But yeah, all the numbers, values, etc...are identical to their actual counerparts. Actually, wait, no i think the armor is a might bit less on the landreich scimitars compared to the confed. and, yup (just checked as i'm writing) its all of 1 cm less. Not a huge change, just something to give the impression that 'this came from mcauliffe vintage'. Its also got two lasers over the confeds twin mass driver front line version. and actually, that goes for all the landreich versions. slightly weaker guns, and (lasers instead of mass drivers, mass drivers instead of neutron guns) and 1cm less of armor, maybe 5dps or 50kps less maneuverability/speed. Nothing that will overall effect things on a huge scale, just leave a slight difference between frontline confed and mcauliffe vintage landreich craft.

in so far as speed/maneuverability goes when compared to the military ships? well, the civvie ships are definately not going to be able to go straight up toe to toe. they're slower, less maneuverable, and overall weakly armored comparitively. also, for a merchant/mercenary daring to take on a kilrathi fighter...heheh, yeah...good luck there. Jalthi's especially will be scary as hell, while not very slow or able to turn real quick, its armored like a tank, and will turn your flimsy ship into debris real quick.

and again i think i've rambled on to long...heheh, i really should just publish a manual quick one of these days for folks to look over, see how everythings laid out. but yeah, all the ship stats that are known, are used.

note: also, i'm not a big fan of civilians getting military equipment either. it may be a remote possiblity though, but altogether unplanned for this project.
 

Cargoman

Spaceman
I would suggest Military munitions as possible salvage ,
from pirate battles ect. .
As an ocasional perk / lucky break .

Of course you could just say that civilian missles have different connectors
or voltage than the military hardware .
Therefore non-interchangable .
 

Ijuin

Admiral
If you are going to be limited to only 2-4 missiles on most ships, then I would like the ability to store the extra missiles in your cargo bay. You could only have one missile per hardpoint mounted, but when you land you could take the extra missiles "out of storage" and mount them. This would be especially valuable if there are missile types that are only available at specific times and places.
 

BradMick

Vice Admiral
well, like in the original privateer there are to be no shortages or 'available only here' type deals. so, that's no worry.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
Howard Day said:
I'm fairly certain all the ships in the original had the same jump limitations. 6? 5? something like that. But I could be definately wrong on that - it's happened before. :D

It's six. An odd number would be annoying.
 

Ijuin

Admiral
Hmmm. Limiting the Hydra to 3 jumps means that you could only go one jump away from a refueling location. Maybe it should be 4 jumps, which lets you go two jumps away. Limiting the Hunchback to only two jumps is neat though, because it enhances the idea that your newbie ship is not really suited for going into uncharted territory--and it keeps you from entering such areas, where raiders would tear your poor weak ship apart.

Here is an idea for a possible ship upgrade: an emergency fuel tank. Available in one- and two-jump sizes, it would provide emergency fuel when your regular fuel runs out, allowing you to make an extra one (or two) jump(s). The extra range would be offset by the need to pay cash to purchase refills for the tank at your next stopover, but the emergency fuel only gets consumed after you have exhausted your normal 2 (Hunchback), 4 (Hydra/Phalanx), 6 (Camel), or 8 (Tarsus) jumps' worth of fuel and would be otherwise stranded.

On missiles: If you keep the Privateer missile strengths, but the shield and armor strengths of player and NPC ships are about 2/3 as strong as in Privateer (as seems to be implied by the in-game stats), then I think that it will scale properly to make missiles seem more effective in Pioneer without having the issue of missiles becoming weaker in the future.

Also, what sort of guns are you planning besides the basic laser/mass driver/neutron guns from WC1? Here are a few ideas based on what later games and books say about the WC1 period:

Photon Cannon: Hits harder than the laser with comparable range and bolt speed, but has a lower refire rate and lower energy efficiency.

Plasma Cannon: Hits harder than the neutron gun, with comparable range and bolt speed, but has a lower refire rate and lower energy efficiency (basically the Privateer plasma cannon with slightly less energy efficiency).

Stormfire: The "outdated" gun that Pliers put on the Intrepid's fighters in WC4. Stormfire guns deal damage about twice as fast as neutron guns, with comparable range, but ammo is strictly limited--your ship will only carry enough stormfire ammo to shoot down about six enemies, assuming you are an average marksman, before you run out. You will have to buy new ammo at ship dealers.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
Ijuin said:
your ship will only carry enough stormfire ammo to shoot down about six enemies, assuming you are an average marksman, before you run out. You will have to buy new ammo at ship dealers.

I saw that coming. I think people need to watch out for adding realism just for realism's sake. Missiles are already really cheap relative to the cost of your ship and the amount of cash a privateer is pulling in. How much are a few hundred tiny metal balls going to cost? Buying missiles is neat because you can customize your assortment and quantity to suit your needs. Restocking on bullets each time you land is tedious and unnecessary.
 

Howard Day

Random art guy.
The only guns we're doing are the Laser Cannon, Mass Driver, Neutron Gun, and Particle Cannon (rare, expensive, but not a "mission reward", like the Steltek Cannon). That's it. We may go back and tune this later, but as it currently stands, those'll be your choices.
To the best of my knowledge if we did do a stormfire cannon (I know we talked about this at some point), its ammo would be automatically replenished when you land - and charged to your account.

As for the jump limits, there's something either you're missing, or we've not made totally clear yet: The systems in Pioneer will have a lot more in them than the systems in Privateer. In Privateer, the average number of places to stop in a system was...less than one, I suppose. In Pioneer It will be rare that a system doesn't have a refueling depot of some sort - if not a full-blown base. So limiting the jumps won't have the effect you think. In addition, you can hire a fuel tanker for longer trips, if you like - but you have to pay for the ship, the fuel, and then protect it while you travel. There will be a few long stretches where this is the only option to get from point A to point B - so naturally there'll be pirates galore. Fun for everyone!
 

Ijuin

Admiral
So then you usually won't be more than one jump away from a refueling stop except when you're going into hostile or uncharted territory?
 
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