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UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#1
all of you reading know about all of the power banks from different companies that you can buy for cell phone with varying sizes, ports, and inputs and outputs depending on your device and how much you may use it.

if you happen to have your ship's generator destroyed beyond repair/functionality will there be a power storage component that you and the A.I could use/buy/sell/research/produce? will there be some sort of measure to tell how much power your power storage(s) has left other than a bar that's filled? will its capacity be measured in watts? minutes?

how vulnerable is a ship's generator assuming this has been developed in some way? what would you need to produce power storage devices? how many resources would you need? how expensive would they be/ how valuable would they be?

if this were to be implemented i think you should have a minimum of 5 mins of power with the bare essentials for a power storage device researched in order to produce a somewhat usable low level first gen power storage device.

those of you who think this is a terrible idea i don't think you would have to worry to much as i doubt you'll be more than 5 mins away from a generator repair/replacement or however much power storage you have depending on how developed a blueprint for a power storage is.
Last edited by jonathanredden on Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#2
Josh has made mention before, although I couldn't point you to where, that targetable subsystems that get disabled cannot cripple the player. As that would be unfun.

So while you might get reduced power capacity. You won't get entirely eliminated power capacity.

This also means that if someone damages your Cruise Engine, you would either be able to limp into cruse slowly, or it would repair over time so that it was only a temporary disable.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#3
From an end-user perspective, it's more useful to know how many minutes of power you have left when you're looking at the entire system (i.e. your ship or station), but more useful to see actual energy consumption on individual parts. This opens the door for making decisions regarding what you can afford to shut down vs. what gives you the power savings you actually need. Targeting system? It uses 1 unit per hour, and we've got 100 units on a full battery for everything on the ship. (I get actual units for power/electrical energy/etc. confused a lot so I'm going to use unit to avoid embarrassing myself in front of our resident engineers and physicists).

Are we going to need to fight on our way back, and if so, should we use the targeting system? Should we fight at all? Projectile weapons would be fairly low-cost in this situation, but energy weapons won't do at all. Keep the shields up and power to the thrusters so we can still burn fuel and steer.

I like this idea of having a backup battery in case the ship's powerplant is rendered inoperable. Of course, you're super boned if your battery gets shot up too, but no redundancy is any match for the absolute worst-case scenario.

Solar panels could help a lot with this; they could charge the backup power supply during normal operation in addition to supplying power to any systems they're attached to. This would give you the opportunity to recharge in space as long as you've got a star nearby. It would be a good anti-frustration feature so that you're not dead in deep space from burning out your battery from not having the know-how on power management the first time you do end up having to use it.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#4
Some of this may depend on the size of the ship you're controlling.

If it's a single-occupant fighter, power/status monitoring and control systems might be pretty minimal. If the typical fighter-sized engagement lasts < 1 minute because a fighter craft is a small, relatively very weakly defended vessel, then maybe LT should not be designed so that fighter pilots have to spend much time fiddling with anything other than maneuvering and shooting.

But the bigger the ship, and thus the longer they can hang in most fights, the more value there might be in (optionally?) detailed monitoring and control systems. For large ships, "combat efficiency" could be a reasonable additional gameplay feature beyond just moving and shooting.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#5
The larger the ship, the more things that can go wrong, the longer it takes to make lasting repairs, the more a big ship feels like the Falcon. What this means with regards to power distribution is that larger ships have more space between parts. As the ship takes damage, the chance for a projectile to disrupt power distribution increases. A disrupted circuit can be restored a number of ways including the rerouting of power by ship on board computers, have the damage repaired by crew or nanobots, or other such things. Each of these repair processes takes time and leaves the ship vulnerable to attack.

I personally think that once the damage is dealt, a timer should begin which simulates the repair time (and the time the system will be offline). I also think that the ship's generator should never be able to be fully destroyed without destroying the ship itself. At most, just disable the ship for a short time, let it get repaired, then continue on its way.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#6
Flatfingers wrote:
Mon Oct 16, 2017 10:37 pm
If it's a single-occupant fighter, power/status monitoring and control systems might be pretty minimal. If the typical fighter-sized engagement lasts < 1 minute because a fighter craft is a small, relatively very weakly defended vessel, then maybe LT should not be designed so that fighter pilots have to spend much time fiddling with anything other than maneuvering and shooting.
How would you reduce that interface beyond just removing access to interfaces the smallship should have for its functionality?

A combat ship still has weapon, shield, sensor, drive, (eventually ECM) subsystems, each with 1+ elements.
How do you want to remove that complexity beyond "nu-uh you cant access these settings because your ship is too small"?

A bigger ship may have more elements of each, but those should be (sub-)groupable anyway, so its complexity could very well collapse down to a fighter's when handled at higher level
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#7
Silverware wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:35 pm
Josh has made mention before, although I couldn't point you to where, that targetable subsystems that get disabled cannot cripple the player. As that would be unfun.

So while you might get reduced power capacity. You won't get entirely eliminated power capacity.

This also means that if someone damages your Cruise Engine, you would either be able to limp into cruse slowly, or it would repair over time so that it was only a temporary disable.
Whelp, looks like the first thing I'm modding in is completely destructible subsystems and damage control.
I am literally and wholly in love with myself.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#9
Cornflakes_91 wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:03 am
Flatfingers wrote:
Mon Oct 16, 2017 10:37 pm
If it's a single-occupant fighter, power/status monitoring and control systems might be pretty minimal. If the typical fighter-sized engagement lasts < 1 minute because a fighter craft is a small, relatively very weakly defended vessel, then maybe LT should not be designed so that fighter pilots have to spend much time fiddling with anything other than maneuvering and shooting.
How would you reduce that interface beyond just removing access to interfaces the smallship should have for its functionality?

A combat ship still has weapon, shield, sensor, drive, (eventually ECM) subsystems, each with 1+ elements.
How do you want to remove that complexity beyond "nu-uh you cant access these settings because your ship is too small"?

A bigger ship may have more elements of each, but those should be (sub-)groupable anyway, so its complexity could very well collapse down to a fighter's when handled at higher level

The very presence of "groupability" in a ship control interface would be a feature that distinguishes the gameplay of small ships from that of big ships.

But this doesn't address my main point, which is that it would be a badly missed opportunity for LT if fighters and cap ships had identical controls because their gameplay features were identical. Why should they be? Why should the play experience of commanding a large, complex, slow-turning, multi-crew ship be functionally identical to the play experience of racing around in a simple, nimble, single-seat fighter?

I expect that the LT player who chooses to fly a fighter when a larger -- more complex -- ship is available will do so because the kind of fun offered by each of these ship classes is different. If so, then those gameplay variations ought to be reflected in different interfaces.

So the way I'm looking at this isn't, "Why would you prevent the player from accessing all settings?" It's more, "If a player prefers to fly a small ship because those deliver Maximum Action Gameplay, why would you insist on forcing that player to have to manage non-exciting ship systems in the middle of a fight?"

The players who enjoy optimizing complex systems over several minutes can have that by choosing to command a big ship. And the players who enjoy split-second tactical excitement -- without having to fuss with system optimization decisions that interrupt the flow of moving and shooting -- can have that by choosing to command a fighter. It's simply not necessary to insist that every ship interface has to be identical.

Designing a game for "realism" or perfect consistency < designing a game to satisfy differing player desires and expectations.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#10
Flatfingers wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:39 pm
The very presence of "groupability" in a ship control interface would be a feature that distinguishes the gameplay of small ships from that of big ships.

But this doesn't address my main point, which is that it would be a badly missed opportunity for LT if fighters and cap ships had identical controls because their gameplay features were identical. Why should they be? Why should the play experience of commanding a large, complex, slow-turning, multi-crew ship be functionally identical to the play experience of racing around in a simple, nimble, single-seat fighter?

I expect that the LT player who chooses to fly a fighter when a larger -- more complex -- ship is available will do so because the kind of fun offered by each of these ship classes is different. If so, then those gameplay variations ought to be reflected in different interfaces.

So the way I'm looking at this isn't, "Why would you prevent the player from accessing all settings?" It's more, "If a player prefers to fly a small ship because those deliver Maximum Action Gameplay, why would you insist on forcing that player to have to manage non-exciting ship systems in the middle of a fight?"

The players who enjoy optimizing complex systems over several minutes can have that by choosing to command a big ship. And the players who enjoy split-second tactical excitement -- without having to fuss with system optimization decisions that interrupt the flow of moving and shooting -- can have that by choosing to command a fighter. It's simply not necessary to insist that every ship interface has to be identical.

Designing a game for "realism" or perfect consistency < designing a game to satisfy differing player desires and expectations.
in-fight power allocation worked for all 90's era space flight games i know about.
freespace, starlancer, wing commander, (i think the xwing/tie fighter games had it as well, but i never played those)

why shouldnt i be able to push a few hotkeys and put more power to shields when i need it?

what is your alternative to disallowing players any access to their fighter's power settings?

where and how would you put the border between the two systems? as there is a pretty flowing border between ship classes and sizes
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#11
Punching power pips to different subsystems is a great mechanic to allow for the player to get a little more performance out of a single system in exchange for performance in other systems.
And it's worth keeping.

Having subsystems that can be disabled, and others that can only be temporarily disabled or degraded is another good gameplay mechanic. Allowing for the player to target specific parts of an enemy to make it easier to beat a hard opponent, while allowing the enemy to return that favor WITHOUT crippling the player to the point they cant fly, or it becomes unfun.

Having your engines entirely out for more than a few seconds? frustrating and not fun.
Same goes for your primary weapons.
However fully disabling shields? That just makes things harder, not more frustrating.

Once you have a damage model like this, shunting power makes even MORE sense, as you can now route around broken systems.
Engines damaged? Shunt more power to them. Get slightly less worse performance.
Damage to your power systems can easily be represented with the loss of pips and secondary systems, without preventing the player from enjoying their dogfight by entirely cutting them out of it.


First and foremost, you should think "will this enrage players?" second you should think "what storytelling will this produce for the player?"
If you can keep from enraging players and still give them interesting mechanics that provide storytelling opportunity, then you have won.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#12
Silverware wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 1:59 am
Punching power pips to different subsystems is a great mechanic to allow for the player to get a little more performance out of a single system in exchange for performance in other systems.
And it's worth keeping.

Having subsystems that can be disabled, and others that can only be temporarily disabled or degraded is another good gameplay mechanic. Allowing for the player to target specific parts of an enemy to make it easier to beat a hard opponent, while allowing the enemy to return that favor WITHOUT crippling the player to the point they cant fly, or it becomes unfun.

Having your engines entirely out for more than a few seconds? frustrating and not fun.
Same goes for your primary weapons.
However fully disabling shields? That just makes things harder, not more frustrating.

Once you have a damage model like this, shunting power makes even MORE sense, as you can now route around broken systems.
Engines damaged? Shunt more power to them. Get slightly less worse performance.
Damage to your power systems can easily be represented with the loss of pips and secondary systems, without preventing the player from enjoying their dogfight by entirely cutting them out of it.


First and foremost, you should think "will this enrage players?" second you should think "what storytelling will this produce for the player?"
If you can keep from enraging players and still give them interesting mechanics that provide storytelling opportunity, then you have won.
Very well said. This is exactly what I was trying to convey in my previous post. X-wing Alliance had power distribution, (to shields, weapons and engines), the choice to have shields generate evenly across the entire ship or focused in the front or rear of the ship, and allowed ship systems to be knocked out for a duration. Also, keep in mind that all this was happening on the fighter level all the way up to the bigger ships which the player didn't control. The only time I really recall being annoyed was when my engines were taken offline because there was nothing I could do at that point to avoid being destroyed. I want the player to be rewarded when they manage to hit critical systems of ships. Damage provides an opportunity for additional game depth and fun.
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#13
BFett wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:14 pm
The only time I really recall being annoyed was when my engines were taken offline because there was nothing I could do at that point to avoid being destroyed. I want the player to be rewarded when they manage to hit critical systems of ships.
And here is the critical part of my message. :D

When you remove agency for poor skill, you create frustration.
Reducing agency as a penalty for poor skill is okay so long as you allow the player a way to claw it back. (in this case through assigning extra pips)
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Re: UPS (uninterruptible power supply)/ power bank/ power storage

#15
Silverware wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:44 pm
And here is the critical part of my message. :D

When you remove agency for poor skill, you create frustration.
Reducing agency as a penalty for poor skill is okay so long as you allow the player a way to claw it back. (in this case through assigning extra pips)
except for the pip concept agreed.

pips are a horrible way to handle ships over 6+ scales of magnitude :P

unless you just want to make them the fundamental unit of power/energy and have capitals throw around a couple of megapips of power

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