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    The ultimate drone R&D thread

    Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Keptick, Sep 20, 2014.

    1. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      Hmmm, actually if the rack was ejected by the way of momentum, then it would be some distance from the ship when the drones launch - they wouldn't even have to be pushed anymore, as there is no need for launching drones beyond undocking them when they cannot clog up a hangar anymore.

      The rack would be minimal, cheap, and wouldn't block the drones since it might just consist of a line of blocks with docking modules and a small activation / logic blob at one end.


      EDIT: What about "drone torpedos"? They would have a minimal amount of shielding and an AI plus a melee type weapon like a damage pulse. They would approach "selected target" and eject their contents with a timer.
       
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    2. Gerion

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      The rack shouldnt get shot at at all. AI only targets things that are an actual threat (player/AI controlled, regardless of weaponry). So unless you put an AI module on it, the turrets on an enemy ship should concentrate on you/the drones.

      That also is another problem: Unless you are outside of weapons range, the enemies turrets/AI ships will target your ship and its turrets and will not change target unless you get out of range or their targets are destroyed. So either undock drones before the enemy arrives (giving him a lot of targets to deal with) or jump away when the drones are out.

      Or fly a ship without anything but drone launchers, shields and a jump drive, give the drones missile/pulse combos, take the beating from the enemy as long as possible while your drones f*** them up royally and jump away.

      AI behaviour tested with pirates and turrets. As long as the AI was inactive and i was in build mode on my station, they would sit idly. Activate AI, pirates attack.

      /edit: that also means, btw, that your anti-drone weapons will be useless as long as the mothership remains in firing range and that your drones are safe as long as the turrets have something else to shoot at.
       
      #182 Gerion, Oct 7, 2014
      Last edited: Oct 7, 2014
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    3. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      Hm that would also mean that in a battle between two drone capable ships (where none of them is @keptick 's doomship that would override the sticky situation by force :p ), whoever ejects drones first will have their drones battle the other ship, while whoever ejects drones last would have the drones try to mostly battle the hostile drones.
       
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    4. Keptick

      Keptick Overkill titan builder

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      So, it would be beneficial to deploy the drones after the enemy?
       
    5. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      That actually depends (which also means the drone game has more depth than I thought).

      You might have anti-drone-drones that have almost no armor and heavy pinpoint weaponry that you eject after the enemy launched their drones.
      On the other hand, you might want to have your missile drones swarm the enemy mothership instead by ejecting them first, which also makes the hostile drones that are ejected after not go after your ship in full count, as there are already drone targets available.


      EDIT: The more I think about it, the more I like the idea of having chaff-drones for defense at the ship, and drone torpedos for offensive purposes that work like racks carrying drones towards the enemy and releasing them based on a timer.
       
      #185 Thalanor, Oct 7, 2014
      Last edited: Oct 7, 2014
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    6. Stakhanov

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      The current drone AI is only functional for a limited set of weapons. This is due to its original purpose (flying isanths) and the weapon systems back then. Drones will chase targets and open fire at 500m , but typically not come closer than 200m. It doesn't matter how long the range of their weapons is - they will not fire before 500m , while turrets can. This means kiting drones are not currently possible.

      Don't bother with disintegrators or pulses , either. Drones do not try to dodge fire until they reach their minimum fighting range , at which point they may turn around or react erratically. They can't reliably reach any target.
       
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    7. Thadius Faran

      Thadius Faran #1 Top Forum Poster & Raiben Jackpot Winner

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      This is weapons R&D without an actual system in game. Communities are so extremely resourceful :)
       
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    8. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      They are, and apparently the game is complex for permitting that with such simple methods.

      I actually find experimental weaponry so much more fun that I even forego some traditional weapon arrays (and thus less reliable firepower) on my ship. Of course there are still some weapon computers controllable in the usual fashion, but space wise, experimental stuff will take a notable part of it.
       
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    9. Thadius Faran

      Thadius Faran #1 Top Forum Poster & Raiben Jackpot Winner

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      I have an experimental weapons development program. Its looking into high ordinance unguided bombs and missiles.
       
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    10. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      By unguided missiles, do you mean by any change things like clock+pushmodule cruise control (does that still work?) torpedoes and similar? If so, that'd be rather awesome. Will try some similar stuff as time permits (not too much time currently :( )
      Basically I want to be able to launch stuff at stationary targets very far away.
       
    11. Thadius Faran

      Thadius Faran #1 Top Forum Poster & Raiben Jackpot Winner

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      The Phase 1 Prototypes were propelled by undocking while the ship was going at fast speeds. Very rudimentary and hazardous but proved effective against non moving and large objects.
       
    12. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      Ye, I am currently trying to transfer that to drone racks, but I have done some terrible things to my own ship with disintegrators and that method already.
      I used to save a blueprint every hour or so. After that incident... I have increased the frequency.
       
    13. Thadius Faran

      Thadius Faran #1 Top Forum Poster & Raiben Jackpot Winner

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      Normally I finish the ship then begin experimentation. At least the hull.
       
    14. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      First ship since a year, my ship construction pipeline is messy at best at this point :D

      Small consideration on anything disintegrator: maybe using plex doors and timers on the torpedos can prevent casualties. If the torpedo was activated on it's way out by something passing through an invisible activation block to it's side or somewhere, it could "arm" itself 10 seconds after the launching procedure or similar.
       
    15. Thadius Faran

      Thadius Faran #1 Top Forum Poster & Raiben Jackpot Winner

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      Dis-Intergrators don't go off until they hit something. Thats why its hazardous launching them the way I do.

      Phase 1 prototypes were launched from a specially designed ship.

      Two tubes each holding 3 Unguided High Yield Warheads. Ship would reach maximum speed then launch torpedoes. Immediately beginning to come to a stop and never turning otherwise the warheads might go off inside the ship. Once they have left the tube ship would turn away from the intended target to avoid damage.

      The biggest issue was the deceleration. The ship had to get in close to the target and then had to somehow have enough distance to avoid hitting the target or the warheads.

      The logic system used to propel stuff now makes that a much easier weapons field though.
       
    16. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      Yes, I will try to test if using plex doors (on the torpedo, not the ship) to "cover" the disintegrators may be of help to prevent setting off warheads prematurely. In theory it should work: only when the timer runs out and the plex doors lift, the torpedo will be set off on collision. Before that, it should be relatively safe to bump it around even :)

      Current caveats that deserve investigation:

      - can a hostile ship use the docking beam to shut the plex doors again, thus "disarming" the warhead? (might be, might not be - are faction plex doors safe?)
      - can I get the timer to trigger 100% on launch with the activation area method
       
    17. Thadius Faran

      Thadius Faran #1 Top Forum Poster & Raiben Jackpot Winner

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      If the warhead is factioned then disarming is impossible only destroying
       
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    18. Thalanor

      Thalanor CEO Snataris Colonial Fleetyards

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      That is very good to hear :) That might just make it possible to have warheads with a "safety" setting and an arming timer that is set off on launch. A moderate amount of shielding could protect the warhead from light turret fire. Direct fire from heavy turrets and ship weaponry probably will remain an issue, but since the warheads are going to be used against very large craft, and turret fire can be diverted with drone swarms beforehand, this might just work.

      EDIT: Just noticed that factioned warheads without AI won't draw turret fire as you have written above. Neat.
       
      #198 Thalanor, Oct 7, 2014
      Last edited: Oct 7, 2014
    19. Keptick

      Keptick Overkill titan builder

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      I'll have to make a skoomseeker mk.II drone (props to @BDLS for making the original) since I figured out how to solve the problems he had with it. For those wondering, it's an automated pulse seeker drone (hence the name skoomseeker XD ).
       
    20. Gerion

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      Hmmm, Isanths with their weapons destroyed always tried to hug my turrets.... Maybe if an AI doesnt have a ranged weapon system, it goes to ramming speed? Disintegrators ahoi?
       
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