// Energy System and Management

Here I ask your opinion and feedback on specific aspect of the game, or feature I am working on.
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Dwarf-Lord Pangolin
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Wed Jan 24, 2018 6:51 am

Amazigh wrote:
Wed Jan 24, 2018 5:49 am
Something to note on the subject of this whole fuel pipes idea:
tsunamayo wrote:
Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:13 am
  • You guys will ask for linking and such, but I was not going for that. The main reason is that I wanted to have the energy balance logic at the level of the ship, for simplification purpose. I want something simple, I dont see much added value in term of possibility by having to link systems, and it doesnt sounds fun to do for me...
    But that dont work well for ground structure (could have a energy distance, and have to use relay) - so I am still hesitating.
This ... is true. I still like the idea of pipes and stuff, but you just reminded me of the many, many, many times I've been frustrated in Space Engineers by the conveyor system forcing me to chose between form and function; there's a reason that mods adding blocks that function as both conveyors and something else are so popular for SE. Plus, ship-level energy balance is easier on performance, I imagine.
mered4 wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:54 pm
The only reason the spaghetti meta exists in Starmade is because power and chambers are dedicated to encouraging empty space. You won't need an integrity system if you don't encourage empty space.
That's not really true, though. The reason spaghetti is a problem isn't because empty space gets abnormal bonuses. Even if your ship's systems work identically, regardless of whether they're surrounded by empty space or the rest of your ship, surrounding them with empty space is still the best choice because it's hard to hit. StarMade's runaway power mechanics didn't help, of course, but they weren't the root cause. And, as schlid points out, while the current power system in Skywanderers has taken steps to discourage gigantism (which is great, BTW), it doesn't really do anything to discourage the spaghetti meta. To prevent spaghettification, the increased risk of compact, realistic ships getting hit needs to be outweighed by the cost of a heavily strung out ship.

Even in a game like Space Engineers, where block configuration doesn't change performance at all, spaghetti ships could be viable; the only things preventing them from being so are the fact that all pieces have to be connected, and that turrets have very accurate AI targeting, making the likelihood that a spaghetti ship would fall to pieces very high. If that weren't a concern, and the turrets weren't so accurate, it would make a lot of sense to spread the components out as much as possible.

Actually, people already do spread them out as much as possible in SE; if a ship has reactors and gyros placed all over it, it ends up being a "zombie ship." Many SE players consider system redundancy to be more important than armor. The only reason people don't strip most or all the armor off them to increase maneuverability is because in SE ships can fall apart; but that's not an issue in SM or Skywanderers.

Of course, as noted most recently by Amazigh, this needs to be balanced to still allow people to build aesthetically pleasing ships as well. But as a core point to start from, schlid's idea is very sound.

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schlid
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Wed Jan 24, 2018 7:00 am

The ratio would have to be quite low to not be limiting, hence why I mentioned surveying the ratios of existing ships, to find something that wouldn't be hindering.

The point is though, the ratio wouldn't need to be very high, as spaghetti takes up a lot less space than even the example ship you posted with big antennae
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mered4
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Wed Jan 24, 2018 8:56 pm

An integrity system is not necessary. Y'all keep adding conditions - if turrets aren't accurate enough, if netcode isn't stable, etc. Those were problems in Starmade, not SkyW. If an HP system is NOT added, and the primary targets become the pilot seat or subsystems, spaghetti ships would be useless due to the mostly unprotected pilot.

Here's another thing: long and thing spaghetti builds have to protect more area with shielding and/or PDCs. They will be incredibly vulnerable to homing missiles.

If you have to add one system on top of another to fix a balance issue, you aren't keeping it simple and are corrupting the system as a whole. Spaghetti ships were not a thing in Starmade until recently, because they weren't better than other PvP builds, like solid cubes.

Using dimensions to determine volume is a very indirect and terrible metric, especially for spaceships. Use direct mass numbers instead. It's a much better comparison.
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schlid
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Thu Jan 25, 2018 12:56 pm

We're adding things on that we *know*. We know tsuna is opposed to having a cheesegrater damage model like you're using as an example (Also, devils advocate? - You call both myself and Pangolin out for using specific examples then your first example relies on using a cheesegrater model)

Also, despite the netcode and turret tracking being issues in starmade and other games, they're issues for a good reason. In multiplayer, unless you're producing a game that is purely a game focused upon combat, for example CSGO, hit-reg is going to be your main concern. Skywanderers, starmade, spengies to name a few are not FPS games nor solely combat games. Tsuna has concerns equally large to hitreg, for example making sure a server will run smoothly despite having several hundred entities loaded at any one time, player desync and so on. (Even with games like CSGO, PUBG, Overwatch, R6 etc, netcode will cause situations where you're like WTF, that should've hit)

You're getting your hopes up way too much, as there is a high chance there will be netcode problems, which then will result in turrets not being as reliable.

I think you have genuinely got the wrong end of the stick of my proposal with this statement.
mered4 wrote:
Wed Jan 24, 2018 8:56 pm
Using dimensions to determine volume is a very indirect and terrible metric, especially for spaceships. Use direct mass numbers instead. It's a much better comparison.
If you read the suggestion clearly, you'll see that the proposal would concern not only theoretical volume but also ship mass, to create a ratio (Read the original post for full explanation). I've mentioned numerous times for this to work well without being limiting it would have to be calibrated, through surveys of complete ships of all sizes to find their ratio, to find what would work well.

As a postface, I'd like to ask you to propose a system completely different to the one suggested, that does not promote blocky ships (due to inherently and unnecessarily large systems), whilst also prevent something like the spaghetti meta, as so far you've been arguing against something I don't believe you understand, as well as the fact you provided no alternate option, which is key in a thread like this where there's discussion regarding the future of the game, it shouldn't stop at one point disagreeing on one suggestion, it should end when most people reach an agreement a suggestion is worthwhile.
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mered4
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Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:08 pm

schlid wrote:
Thu Jan 25, 2018 12:56 pm
Alright. Let me rephrase in terms of Skywanderer's mechanics, as I was unaware of a few.....facts.

The energy system, along with what happens when your ship drops to 0HP or takes fatal thermal damage (they could be the same thing), is a fundamental system. It is the foundation of how ships move, shoot, and interact with one another. In fact, it's comparable to the base of a pyramid - all other systems will narrow the scale, shape, and size of effective combat ships from this starting point.

Therefore, it should only look to curtail the most extreme cases of undesirable building techniques. It won't take much adjustment to eliminate these edge cases in a simple, efficient manner. Tsuna mentioned in his dev video about power that energy will be soft capped per group (not per ship). This is incredibly important, and is an adequate way to balance the energy system. It forces energy system blocks to take up proportionally more space the larger vessels become. He also mentioned damage disabling reactors, but that mechanic may need reworked considering you can't directly attack a properly hulled power reactor.

And....that's it. Aside from the previously discussed fuel types and so on, at its core, energy creation should be a simple system. Every other system relies on it and builds from it, and it should thus be focused around simplicity and creative freedom, not limiting exploitative and cancerous cases like cubes and spaghettification. We have plenty of other systems with which to limit such problematic vessels.

I suggest that we discuss those edge cases elsewhere, in an appropriately designed thread. I understand you guys are thinking about an integrity system, but I'd rather keep to the topic of energy here, despite my earlier....outburst. :)
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schlid
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Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:39 am

To get more on topic regarding the energy system though,
mered4 wrote:
Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:08 pm
What do you think of a system for power generation similar to the one I suggested? I'd be interested to get your feedback on that as well.
fantastique

mered4
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Fri Feb 02, 2018 4:23 pm

schlid wrote:
Fri Feb 02, 2018 3:39 am
I do like the idea of a tank system if we are going to use fuel for energy (which I think tsuna mentioned at some point). The way you have laid it out (physical connections) looks quite usable. It adds a layer of complexity without breaking common sense, and it connects the two systems (fuel and energy) naturally.

So long as fuel tanks have lots of storage (maybe Elite: Dangerous levels of fuel) then we should be fine.
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schlid
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Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:37 am

Something I considered recently after speaking with a few people on discord would be an addition to my original post at viewtopic.php?f=11&t=286&start=54 - The ability to use a logic signal into a fuel tank, to be able to turn it off (flowing fuel to reactor) and on (fuel is
locked and held within tank even when the ship is "on") - therefore by default they'd work normally.

This'd be rather useful for those making tanker ships or refueling ships and such as you'd be able to multipurpose tanks that are connected to a reactor; so some could supply fuel to the reactor, and other tanks could hold it for later use.
fantastique

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