Wing Commander: Eagle Rising - A Game Idea

Chillyche

Rear Admiral
Is that canon? Is that like, retconned canon or something?
Sorry, I didn't notice the ensuing conversation. Everything may be canon, but there are directly contradictory elements between the Movie and everything else (Blair is Jedi, cough, cough), like Bossman's date of death, Blair and Angel's hookup, Paladin's job, rank and nationality, you know, stuff like that. Whatevs.
 

Sylvester

Vice Admiral
Chillyche, just relax. I know it may seem a bit convoluted, but everything is canon. You're not the first to make this argument - some fans in 1994 were incensed that the WC3 ships looked nothing like the ships from WC1-WC2, but you almost never hear that argument anymore.
 

Chillyche

Rear Admiral
Just to be clear, I don't really care whether it's canon -- I think it's impossible to set something in this universe without having to choose some piece of official product to ignore -- I just wasn't sure if there even was an official canon, or if it was more of a "whatever you feel like pulling from" kinda canon. Which brings us back to what you originally said in terms of this game being in the WC1/WC2 style, and we'll just have to wait and see what events unfold. One reason it's a rich playground for fan projects is that given that WC1, SWC, and WC:The Movie and WCA (animated, not game) all basically tell Blair's origin story, and are all different, we can't help but be allowed to make choices ourselves. It seems like it's a little more flexible than some other universes. Plus, Rapier IIs, man. Rapier IIs.

Anyway, whether Confed is blue or green, it don't change the taste of mustard.
 

Sylvester

Vice Admiral
We're going with the WC1/WC2 style. WCA is pretty close to that, so we can take elements there as well.

Also, apparently the ship we see in WCA is NOT an Epee. However, LOAF suggested a way around that.

We shall model the ship like it is seen in WCA, with those big ass engines, and name it the F-40 Foil.
 

Sylvester

Vice Admiral
Everyone cool down - this is a mod discussion thread, not a canon thread. We're going with WC1/WC2 style art as seen in the games released on the PC. Case closed.
 

Ijuin

Admiral
We're going with the WC1/WC2 style. WCA is pretty close to that, so we can take elements there as well.

Also, apparently the ship we see in WCA is NOT an Epee. However, LOAF suggested a way around that.

We shall model the ship like it is seen in WCA, with those big ass engines, and name it the F-40 Foil.

The name "Foil" fits in nicely with the whole "lightweight swords for nimble fighters" naming theme that was established with Epee, Rapier, etc. What kind of weapons would it have? It needs to be differentiated from the Hornet, Ferret, and Epee in terms of weaponry . . . triple lasers and a pair of heatseekers perhaps? Or dual lasers (or dual mass drivers), dual dumbfires, and a Stormfire, if you're using those? Or will other gun types such as Photon be used?
 

Sylvester

Vice Admiral
From looking at the fighter, I think we'll go with two neutron cannons and perhaps three heatseakers (two on the wing mounts and one under the fuselage). That would create a good stepping stone design to the later Epee.
 

Ijuin

Admiral
Hmm sounds like a Confed equivalent to the Sathra. Neutron cannons on a light fighter are interesting--you have to get in a bit closer than for mass drivers, but can deal a little extra damage. I do hope that it's at least as durable as a Hornet if you're forcing us into close-in combat like this though.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
We could always run some experiments later down the line. One thing I wanted in this mod was not quite as many ships, but make them harder to kill. I want a capship kill to be a reward, and to be somewhat difficult to do with just guns, making the availability of torpedoes a bonus on any given mission where you have to attack a capital ship.
I very strongly think this is the wrong way to go. It's a reasonable direction to take when making a game set in a previously unused time period, or in a time period where things are known to work this way. But this is WC1 we're talking about. While I realise that capships being an easy kill is something people often complained about in WC1, I would argue that this is an integral part of the WC1 experience (and it wasn't actually that easy - remember how often in WC1 you'd be going home with severe damage). Yes, missiles should be a useful thing when flying a Hornet or a Scimitar, but when making an attack using a Raptor or something similarly heavily-armed, you should feel like your guns are more than enough.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Also, what about treating all the capships like corvettes?
You win some, you lose some - it's possible, but brings its own problems.

Cons:
- A corvette is limited to 6 turrets altogether. This restriction may be possible to lift using a DLL patch?
- Turrets cannot be destroyed separately. In the context of WC1, that may actually be very natural.
- You lose the possibility of tracking component damage - i.e., your capship will not change visually when someone blows out its engines, and you cannot use automatic commands to launch enemy fighters using a launcher component.
- The lack of a hangar component also means no automated landings. Not a big issue (we only used scripted landings in UE), just involves a bit more scripting.
- You have problems with torpedoes - it is not possible to have a missile that only tracks corvettes. You can, of course, create fake torpedoes in the form of bigger, slower dumbfires, or equally big and equally slow missiles that can lock on any target, but due to speed and locking time are virtually useless against fighters.
- Corvettes fly just like fighters - so, their manoeuvrability would have to be significantly restricted to prevent them from doing crazy things.
- Having no components, you have more issues with poly counts. Fighters and corvettes are normally just one mesh, and one mesh cannot have more than around 1200 polys. For capships, this restriction doesn't seem to exist, and is irrelevant anyway (because each component is a separate mesh). This can be worked around - a fighter can consist of multiple parts, which are just like components except they cannot be destroyed separately. We've done this a few times in Standoff.
- Your capships leave no debris behind when they are destroyed. Nothing.

Pros:
- Your capship has fore/aft shields and four armour segments. Just the way it should be in WC1!
- You can destroy capships with guns, just the way it should be in WC1.
- Your capships actually explode and vanish, just like WC1!
- When trying to do capship battles, you can actually have Kilrathi destroyers manoeuvring relatively freely (without excessive scripting) to attack a Confed carrier and the like. Could be neat.
 

Sylvester

Vice Admiral
We can see if a DLL hack can be made - personally I don't care if there is nothing left of my capship - we can always make debris like we see with the Standoff fighters.

As you said Quarto, its important to be able to kill capships with guns in WC1, and you will be able to. It will just be easier if someone happens to have a torpedo lying around.
 

Sylvester

Vice Admiral
Update - I've gotten an entire mission to compile, but there is an error when referencing another file. Pete is taking a look at it and should get back to it soon. I'm going to integrate my practice missions into the Unknown Enemy simulator and see how they work out.
 
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