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LordSilver

Few questions on ship and ground mecheanics.

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based on what i have read there will be players on the ground and in space and it is all on the same server. Say there is someone on the ground in some city they have built, how will the mechanic of players on the ground and players on ships work? Will players in the ships be able to unload heavy ordinance onto a ground based target? Or will there be a mechanic to protect ground based players that are just getting their feet wet?

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based on what i have read there will be players on the ground and in space and it is all on the same server.

 

Well, it is all on a single continuous instance or shard, i.e. one single, seemless game world.

 

Say there is someone on the ground in some city they have built, how will the mechanic of players on the ground and players on ships work? Will players in the ships be able to unload heavy ordinance onto a ground based target? Or will there be a mechanic to protect ground based players that are just getting their feet wet?

 

I'm not sure if NQ have ever explicitly announced that there will be space-ground and ground-space interaction in battles but I think it is fair to assume that it is their aim to include it.  Hopefully Nyz will make a statement about it in this thread at some point.

 

So assuming that spacecraft/orbital platforms will be able to bombard ground targets with heavy ordnance, there will undoubtedly be counter measures that ground positions can fire into space at those ships/platforms.  From an early devblog, "the game design should also be very careful to always add a counter-power to every power you grant in the game."  Nyz has also said that rock/paper/scissors is something they plan for the game.

 

Something else that is planned for the game which you can read about here, here and here is that you will be able to set up automated defenses.  So for example you might have a huge plasma gun deployed in the centre of your city that automatically fires on any ships or stations in space that come within a certain range and don't have the right permissions to be there.  In the case of spaceships who do have the right permissions turning on you and firing without warning, you could also program those defenses to fire on anything in space that is firing on or around it.

 

There's also the arkship secure zone which stops all forms of violence within its sphere of influence and the possibility for players to set up similar secure zones (see here and here).  This type of defense will not be widely available though.

 

Something to note is that the combat mechanics have not yet been set in stone and we don't have a lot of information about it yet.  But it's safe to say that no matter how powerful certain tactics or abilities may be, there will be sufficient counters to them.

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Hi LordSilver and Klatu,

 

In short, the basic mechanics to make possible "planet ground vs orbital" combat will already exist in-game.

The transition between planet ground, planet atmosphere and space is seamless in Dual Universe (no instances, no loading screen).

So yes, this kind of combat is technically possible. However, to really become a gameplay possibility, the team will need to develop specific Elements for this kind of battle scale (very long range and powerful weapons, very large and powerful defenses, stats associated to these elements, game balancing, etc). This won't be trivial to develop (that would be a complete new territory in the MMO field as no one has ever made that before, from our knowledge. A challenge as big as exciting!) and that's not in the first priorities right now. But that could definitely be on the roadmap sooner or later. Maybe as a stretch goal for the crowdfunding campaign ? ;)

 

Best Regards,

Nyzaltar.

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Hello there,

 

For a time, I disagree with you Nyzaltar as there is already a powerful weapon you can use in this case: kinetic projectiles (also known as "ships", or "rockets") :).

Just throw a bunch of them on your target and it will most probably not like the collision.

 

Regards,

Ryanis

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Doesn't that tactic come straight out of Zapp Brannigan's Big Book of War?

 

I don't know about Zapp Brannigan's book, but maybe Shadow was refering to a Caldari  Admiral named Tovil-Toba, raming his ship (with himself aboard) on the Gallente city Hueromont? Or maybe Gallente Admiral Noir ramming his ship into a Caldari Station ? ;)

 

Best Regards,

Nyzaltar.

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I don't know about Zapp Brannigan's book, but maybe Shadow was refering to a Caldari  Admiral named Tovil-Toba, raming his ship (with himself aboard) on the Gallente city Hueromont? Or maybe Gallente Admiral Noir ramming his ship into a Caldari Station ? ;)

 

Best Regards,

Nyzaltar.

 

There are plenty of examples :).

Especially, I can remember references in the Star Wars books, Haegemonia campaign (it's a sci-fi RTS game), Space Engineers user creations and some books from P. F. Hamilton.

I didn't thought about the Caldari Admiral (and never know how his name is spelled), but I know the story and it works too (check www.youtube.com/watch?v=nppFn_dPX20 if you want to learn more).

 

Regards,

Shadow

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From the game mechanics, it sounds like attaching engines or a mass driver to an asteroid (if you can find one) so you can "drop rocks down the gravity well" should be very doable. An atmosphere provides some protection from this, if implemented, but other planets could be quite vulnerable. However, given mastery of anti-gravity tech maybe deflecting asteroid strikes on a city won't be too hard.

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Hi everyone!

 

Keep in mind that as much as the dev team is for realism, a limit will be drawn where realism can unbalance the game and/or to where the current technology can push us. While orbital combat is feasible with our current technology, "collision combat" (to ram a ship/asteroid in another ship or a planet) is like a pandora box: we are totally aware that some other games using voxels have made possible this kind of gameplay. But if you look closely, this has always been with small constructs and never in a massively multiplayer universe. This is not a coincidence. "Collision Combat" is very, VERY expensive in terms of calculation power. It's proportional to the size of involved constructs. It can become a lot worse with a growing number of involved constructs.

 

Now, as you might already know, we took the decision to enable players to make huge constructs and let them evolve in one single-shard massively multiplayer universe. These choices implied we had to make the tough decision to put aside some interesting gameplay possibilities... for now. Basically, as much as technology is evolving (and it's evolving fast!) we still have a few technical limits to what we can achieve. But we stay focused on the future. Who knows which calculation power we will  have reached in 10 years? So it's not a "never" answer. More a "not happening soon".

 

Best Regards,

Nyzaltar.

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Hi!

 

I just stumbled over this topic and I must say that when I read that collision damage isn't planned to be a core feature from the beginning, I was like "WHAT?! How should that work?"

 

I know that this is a bit difficult to handle (I've seen a lot of issues in Space Engineers), but in my opinion, there are a lot of things, that simply wouldn't work right without collision damage - landing for example. If I get you right, then there would also be no need to add stopping engines to, for example a colony ship which isn't supposed to take off again, because I could just let it crash on the surface of a planet and it won't take any damage?

It would also feel very odd, if for example two capital ships collide and just stop or bounce off without taking damage - to me this would be a huge balancing issue...

 

The second point would be, like shadow already mentioned, weapons. To be more specific: Player made weapons. One negative thing in Space Engineers are the very few and weak weapons. If you don't want to use mods (and i think DU isn't a concept that could support mods so easily), you don't have anything that could be a capital ship weapon - except PMWs, like for example the guided missiles of whiplash141. Even if you have a lot of pre-made weapons for all kinds of ships, DU with the planned economics would be great for such engineers - there could be a custom weapons market and a real need to develop countermeasures, even better weapons and so on... Real challenge and real technological progress. ;)

 

I really don't want to offend anyone, because i still think that DU is a great project, and i had a big wow-moment when i first heard of it, but to me this is an important topic (i just made an account to reply to this :) )

 

Please correct me , if I got something wrong, or if the plan has already changed. To me any, even unrealistic, collision damage mechanic would be better than none :)

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Hi!

 

I just stumbled over this topic and I must say that when I read that collision damage isn't planned to be a core feature from the beginning, I was like "WHAT?! How should that work?"

 

I know that this is a bit difficult to handle (I've seen a lot of issues in Space Engineers), but in my opinion, there are a lot of things, that simply wouldn't work right without collision damage - landing for example. If I get you right, then there would also be no need to add stopping engines to, for example a colony ship which isn't supposed to take off again, because I could just let it crash on the surface of a planet and it won't take any damage?

It would also feel very odd, if for example two capital ships collide and just stop or bounce off without taking damage - to me this would be a huge balancing issue...

 

The second point would be, like shadow already mentioned, weapons. To be more specific: Player made weapons. One negative thing in Space Engineers are the very few and weak weapons. If you don't want to use mods (and i think DU isn't a concept that could support mods so easily), you don't have anything that could be a capital ship weapon - except PMWs, like for example the guided missiles of whiplash141. Even if you have a lot of pre-made weapons for all kinds of ships, DU with the planned economics would be great for such engineers - there could be a custom weapons market and a real need to develop countermeasures, even better weapons and so on... Real challenge and real technological progress. ;)

 

I really don't want to offend anyone, because i still think that DU is a great project, and i had a big wow-moment when i first heard of it, but to me this is an important topic (i just made an account to reply to this :) )

 

Please correct me , if I got something wrong, or if the plan has already changed. To me any, even unrealistic, collision damage mechanic would be better than none :)

 

You make some good points, but you also have to realize that some things are simply not possible (at least at this time). Think about it this way - Space Engineers can handle collisions, but try crashing a ship of 10,000+ blocks into a planet at high speed. When the impact occurs, frame rate and sim speed suffer dramatically... and that's only 1 person/ship. That's on a scale of server that is very small in comparison to what DU is proposing. Imagine trying to play on a SE server with 100 people... and 10% of them constantly crashing into planets, other ships, or anything else. The server would pretty much die or be so slow it would be entirely unplayable. Now scale that up to thousands or even tens of thousands of players... and you see why this isn't really something feasible. Granted, SE is not optimized and especially not for multiplayer, but the amount of processing power required to figure out the level of geometry and physics for even a few hundred ship collisions would be tough.

 

I do expect there will be some sort of collision mechanics, but just not to the detailed level that you are thinking of. Perhaps when a ship collides with something, the collision mechanics will look at the speed of collision (speed of your ship +/- speed of what you ran into) and what each object is (or is composed of), then determine whether this collision meets a certain threshold - if it does, a "destruction" type event happens, which could even be made graphically pretty without having to render your ship breaking into a million pieces; if it doesn't, the ship simply bounces off, perhaps even a minor "collision" event could happen that leaves a mark on your ship or does slight damage to it's systems...

 

I would certainly hope that we're not able to just fly through things, and especially not each other..  a space sim definitely needs the ships to be solid objects.

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That's what I meant when I said I 've seen a lot of issues in SE ;)

 

As far as I know, DU will handle ships as single entities as soon as they are complete - not as a large bunch of single blocks like SE - so it could be a bit less resource-hungry.

 

Like I said, for me it's fine if there is at least any kind of collision damage - not necessarily an overly realistic kind.

 

I am really not an expert when it comes to game development or handling resources, but maybe there is a way to do it similar to weapon damage (which will definitely be implemented).

 

My idea would be to create a sphere of damage at the impact point, maybe just like a hit from any kind of ballistic or laser weapon. The dimensions and strength could depend on the mass and speed of the ships. You could also use the impact vectors of both ships as well as their weight to calculate how they possibly would drift apart after the impact.

Since there will be weapons, there has to be some kind of code that determines how structure and armor influences the hits.

 

So maybe they could handle a collision like a hit from a weapon - with only the strength of the hit depending on the involved objects.

 

Besides basic interactions and collisions, there is one reason why I would really appreciate some kind of collision damage: I simply like the idea of magnet (or gravity) acceleration cannons :)

 

As far as I understood, gravity on ships is confirmed - so the player could theoretically build some kind of MAC or gravity cannon.

 

In my opinion this would be a good motivation for capital ship builders.

And: it wouldn't be enough to just mine or buy all necessary resources for a big gun - you would also have to invent the firing / loading mechanism and even the projectiles by yourself.

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it really depends on how the devs want to play it out i mean if re-entry heat is a factor then the problem becomes how do you find a object big enough to survive that long. but there is the concept of a "orbital kenetic weapon" it kinda works in SE i would like to see proportional damage to mass that would be awesome

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Re-entry heat could make ship-building a lot more complex. Maybe you would need heat shielding, or powerful engines / a slower entry. It also could be a counter-player for "stealth"-hulls - if they add something like that - so you maybe would have to decide if you want a ship that is either stealth, or capable of quick landing on a planet with atmosphere.

Sounds interesting to me :)

I'm really looking forward to more information on those basic mechanics.

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With no collision damage, ships would just bounce of any other space objects. It would be silly, if large capital ships bounce of much smaller vehicles. Imagine the game press, if such things would happen. But when you adjust collision effects to the mass of the colliding objects without adjusting damage, the result would create battle tactics, where ships will not be attacked but bumped away, or guided to crash into something lethal. The press for this wouldn't be well too.

 

I really wonder, how Novaquark will manage to avoid collision damage and bad news coverage at the same time.

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There have been countless other games that manage to provide some form of damage model without the computational demands of voxel deformation and destruction.  Admittedly, I'm dissapointed that we probably won't be blowing gaping, jagged holes in hulls or seeing ships ripped in half during combat with debris flying everywhere, but I understand the necessity of the compromise.  I don't think that's reason to assume that ships will just be bouncing around impervious to damage.  I'm sure collisions and weapons damage will be adequately accounted for, even if it's a more "conventional" solution than we'd all hope for.

 

I appreciate the fact that the developers are insisting on realistic expectations and articulating the limits of their technology, however groundbreaking it might prove to be in certain respects.  While that seems dissapointing on the front end (especially for those hoping for the ultimate everything simulator), it bodes well for the game long-term when the developers are willing to temper expectations early on.  That shows a degree of integrity and restraint by the developers lacking in many early-access titles, which bolsters my hope that the developer's vision may actually be realized.

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