Research and Development in SotS2.
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- Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2006 3:48 am
1 light second = 299,792.458 kilometers
The ranges in SotS 2 are much smaller than 300,000 km. I think that tactical distances are in meters, with CR's at about 90 m, DN's at about 270 m, LV's at about 810 m, default sensor range at 7,000 m and missile range at 10,000 m.
So the point is if you put a 90 m CR on a 300,000,000 m diameter battlefield (that's > 7x10^16 m in combat area) and allowed laser weapons to have "realistic" ranges, you would end up with a tiny little dot firing at another tiny little dot. Sounds boring and unfun to me.
I always thought it would make sense if you assume the ships are just represented much much larger than they actually should be. So that planet really is 15,000 km diameter, and the short range ship-ship combats are still 5,000 km distance at minimum. Most of the weapon velocities are at least in the ballpark this way based on the weapon type. (5,000 km is about 16 light-milliseconds, so even then we're still a an order of magnitude off from what we see in game).
If you've ever seen an actual military tactical display, the icons are far larger than the scale of the vehicles/weapons they represent.
- Posts: 1490
- Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2006 6:14 pm
The visual distinction is obviously so the player can easily ID weapons in the heat of battle.
The mechanical distiction is really interesting to me, though.
Beam lasers do not miss. The implication is that they must remain on-target for at least a half-second to do damage. The target has to be close enough that the data from targeting sensors is timely. This is supported by beam lasers' generally shorter range. There's some secondary effects to consider as well: even a tiny vibration in the firing mechanism could "dance" a beam over a wide area at longer ranges, smearing the beam over enough surface area that it does no damage. I imagine that damping that vibration is nearly impossible, especially when the turret is in motion to track a target. Pulse lasers can dump enough energy in such a short time that vibration won't "smear" the beam. The deviation that we see is probably an abstraction for this kind of mechanical limitation and the time-lag on targeting sensors, as well as basic electronic warfare affecting those sensors. Because a pulse laser won't smear, you see a longer range, well out past where sensor lag guarantees a hit. The travel time of the pulse just means that espically nimble targets are harder to hit at long range, a tidy mechanic for sensor lag.
SotS ships and distances have never been to scale; even time is scaled funny.
my zombie outbreak mini-sim: unfortunately, it's not Fort Zombie
Winner of the "Guess what the zerker discs are an homage to?" race. (The Mandarin's ten rings)
- Posts: 1566
- Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 11:02 pm
Turns out I was just grossly overestimating the duration of the pulse... I was thinking in milli and should have been thinking in nano or pico apparently - my mistake
Picoseconds or femtoseconds are the appropriate scales for pulsed lasers. More than that and it's closer to PWMing a CW laser. The pulses need to have timescales within an order of magnitude or two of the laser wavelength for interesting effects
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- Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:31 pm
Quick question how come I never get see the Graviton beam icon after I get Meson Beam?
- Posts: 597
- Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 4:30 pm
Because Graviton Beam also requires a high level tech from the construction tree - Gravity Control or some such. Basically, find where Tractor Beams are, and follow that line to the very end, then you can unlock Graviton Beams.
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