In depth mechanics for total stealth overhaul

    Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by AtraUnam, Jul 16, 2017.

    1. AtraUnam

      AtraUnam Maiden of crashes

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      So the key of this idea is a visibility score and the removal of nav-diamonds as a default feature on all entities.

      To start with every ship has a visibility score, the default for this is 0, this score can be raised by a number of things:
      • For every X mass (e.g. 100) a ships visibility increases by 1 (Note, instead of mass, box-dimensions could also be used in order to give armored ships a stealth advantage over shielded ones due to armors lack of constant power consumption)
      • For every X power consumption a ships visibility increases by 1 (stored power does not contribute, only power actively being used)
      • If a ship has its radar turns on then the ships visibility increases by the radars sensitivity
      Ok so onto radar, radar would be a module of some sort, the more of it you place down (or whatever other mechanic for better stats is used) the greater your radars sensitivity. When turned on it allows you to detect any ship with a visibility greater than your own visibility minus your radars sensitivity.
      [example]
      • A ship with 100 visibility has a radar with 50 sensitivity. Thus it can detect any ship with a visibility of 50 or more (100-50 = 50).
        Additionally this ship has a visibiltiy of 150 (100+50 = 150) when its radar is turned on as described in the first part of this post.
      Almost finally we have background visibility this defaults to 0, if a ship has a visibility lower than the background visibility then it cannot be detected by any means, the background visibility of an area could be raised by various means, for instance a radar jammer would raise background visibility. Such an increase would obviously let everyone know someone was jamming in the area but if your visibiltiy is now below the new background visibiltiy then they won't be able to pinpoint your exact location (only detected ships get a nav diamond). Additionally you could hide several other ships assuming they too have suitably low visibility.

      Forgot to add this in (Thanks alterintelalterintel) visibility would decrease by either a fixed number or a percentage for every X meters between objects, aka far away things are harder to detect.

      All of this is just a barebones set of mechanics and as alterintelalterintel pointed out you could use an identical system for cloaking as well as radar. You could also apply it in various ways: e.g. sectors around stars having a higher default background visibility, or a cloaking field that decreases the visibility of all ships within it.

      Abrupt end of post is abrupt.
       
      #1 AtraUnam, Jul 16, 2017
      Last edited: Jul 16, 2017
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    2. alterintel

      alterintel moderator

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      Also a range element?
      For every sector you are away your visability / detectability would decrease by one. so with your example:
      A ship with 100 visibility has a radar with 50 sensitivity. Thus it can detect any ship with a visibility of 50 or more up to 49 sectors away
      (100 visibility - 50 sensitivity - 49 sectors = 1).
       
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    3. AtraUnam

      AtraUnam Maiden of crashes

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      Woops forgot to add that.
       
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    4. Jaaskinal

      Jaaskinal ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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      Probably not sectors, given how the max engaugement range on a default server is something like 6 sectors if you really push your weapons range. 1/20th of sector intervals maybe?
       
    5. Star-Boy

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      Great idea but I don't see why the size of your ship should determine how well you can detect other ships. Obviously a big ship should be easier to spot than a small ship. But why should a small ship with a 50 block radar be able to detect other ships better than a large ship with the exact same radar system? It seems like you want to give smaller ships an advantage that might level the playing field a bit but it doesn't make a lot of sense why they'd have that advantage. Maybe I'm just missing something.
       
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    6. alterintel

      alterintel moderator

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      Well either mass or box dimensions. But this would also include things such as your own power usage and shields and such. All of these things would contribute to your own visibility score.

      The way I understand it, is that a ship must overcome it's own background noise or it's own interference before it can detect anything around it. It would be like you having music playing in your room. For somebody to get your attention they would have to be louder than the music in your room.

      A nice side effect of this system is that it would encourage small energy efficient ships.
       
    7. AtraUnam

      AtraUnam Maiden of crashes

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      In addition to alterintel's reason, it also satisfies a frequently expressed desire to give small ships some sort of indirect advantage over larger ones, in this case making it easier for small ships to sneak up on big ones are harder for large ships to sneak up on small ones.
       
    8. aRottenKomquat

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      I like it. It also has the advantage of being the simplest stealth/sensor mechanic I've ever seen proposed.
       
    9. TBB

      TBB

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      It makes sense that an entity would have it's own signature/footprint. Not that this would be determined by size or mass, but rather by systems, or if you want to make it more convoluted than it really has to be, hull or hull types. It makes sense that a ship with a lot of systems would be easily detectable without any thoughts behind hiding it, but that would make it big anyway. Creating a system that has size or mass as a variable in it would be a mistake.

      What I think is a good system:
      Footprint: talking about radar visibility and signature.
      • A ship starts with a footprint of 1.
      • x amount of e/sec adds to the footprint (not power consumption, but rather regeneration).
      • Radars do not affect your footprint and consume x amount of energy.
      • Add a radar jammer that consumes a lot of energy in order to jam all frequencies rendering radars useless. (Helps with swarming, but is balanced by needing something more like a capital ship. + Imagine when you know what's coming once your radar stops working.)
      • As of radar sensitivity: building a bigger radar results in more sensitivity. Increasing these blocks linearly causes the results to get more accurate logarithmically. This way you can tweak effectiveness in such a way that investing in a radar that can detect small ships is an unwise investment, as you can just place more turrets or drones. However having a small one in any ship large enough to be a beefy fighter is a wise investment.
      • Distance decreases radar sensitivity.
      • Share radar signals P2P. If you have a tiny fighter too tiny for a radar you can have a single block computer or a faction-block sharing connections to a mother ship or a base. This connection gets updated with the data from the entities or entity it's linked to, but depending on the distance it's connection gets updated at longer or shorter intervals + it's data is not going to be the most accurate as distance plays a role in radar sensitivity. (Maybe make it hackable (or (D)DoS-able) too, disorganizing drone carriers and the like.)
      Just brainstorming here and pretty convoluted/unbalanced at the moment.
      • Hull actually isolates your systems decreasing the signature by a large amount, however it adds back to it causing, in general, a small decrease (not making it possible to achieve footprint 0). Adding more hull minimizes your footprint.
      • Radar jammers jam your specific signature. This causes other ships of the same footprint to be invisible to the radar as well. Perfect for clones and swarmers, but unbalanced.

      Faction members are always visible to the radar.
      As of cloaking: maybe balance it more, maybe not, but the concept is as good as it gets I think...

      In general I would like to see an implementation that makes sense to new players. (Something you don't have to really learn.)

      If you worry about a system being unbalanced and you need to make it so that it's balanced, yet it doesn't reflect what you would expect if you do. It's not wise in my opinion to keep working on that idea. You should rather think about other ones and ask for opinions and help or leave it as is.

      I would like to see an other implementation of this system, especially the P2P implementation, but I have to say that it works OK at the moment...
       
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