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Author Topic: Warship design questions  (Read 2125 times)

Wheturangi

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Warship design questions
« on: 21 January 2022, 00:08:42 »
Decided that I needed to update my Excel skills and wanted to make a Warship/Jumpship/Dropship designer.

Got the basic design down. So Engines, structure, fuel etc.

But what confused me is armor and weapons especially weapons.

I assume that the max armor you can have 600 per hex side, based on the Warship Record Sheet in Strategic Operations.
Max armor is based on what your Structural Integrity tonnage is divided by 50

Now weapons are horrible. No decent tables or charts to use and you have to flip flop between different books and find what does what in different sections. You can tell that they didnt have a clear idea on what to do and to be honest I havent seen a decent space combat ever.

But what confuses me is the "Bay" system. 700 standard damage or 70 capital damage. You can have multiple bays on an arc, right? So does that mean I can mount hundreds of MGs to provide a huge point defense and cancel any missiles? Put 70 ERPPCs in a bay and go wild.

What I am looking at is trying to make a ship design that survives combat and that means armor and point defense.
In a Battlemech you need armor and speed. Sure ECM and AMS helps, but to get those +hit modifiers, you need speed and terrain. Armor will soak up the damage and enable you to last longer in a battle. See a PPC hit a 3025 Locust and watch the limbs fly.

A warship would depend on stealth and sensors first and then strike to its advantages. But Battlespace/AeroTech 2 isnt about that. Its just Mechs in space and I'm OK with that, but I want my designs to win and that means use what you can. Armor and point defense are the only defense measures as far as I can see.

Anyway I'm enjoying the design work. But if I can just get through the chaos that is weapons. Also enjoying the logistics and psychology of naval forces. Long months of patrols away from home makes fascinating reading on what crews need and want.

monbvol

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #1 on: 21 January 2022, 13:40:48 »
There is no actual upper limit on armor in the rules beyond weight limitations.  I can't remember where the upper actual limit is that I found before I ran out of mass but it was well north of 600.

You've got the basic gist of it.  Yes you can have multiple bays per arc.  You can also have smaller than max bays if so desired.  Machine guns are not the best point defense option but yes it is ridiculously easy to exploit these rules to make missile attacks completely ineffective.  What keeps the ER PPC bays from being completely broken is their shorter range compared to Naval PPCs.  Yeah it's something that is still out of whack and I do not know how to fix without completely redoing the construction rules again but this time not even attempting to pretend the old designs should be preserved in any shape or form.

StratOps does give in-built ECM to hit modifiers for Warships as an optional rule and additional benefits to some unit types for mounting additional ECM gear.

AlphaMirage

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #2 on: 21 January 2022, 14:18:14 »
Might I suggest checking out my Second Star League Guide to Warships in the Fanfic section (link below).

All the numbers are valid I just needed to make up my own fluff since Warships don't really exist in universe anymore. I have computed the basic stats of various weapon types and suggest strategies to optimize usage for different roles.

The best defense is range and velocity. Armor helps certainly but engaging further out helps your to hit chances while maintaining thrust allows you to survive by changing facing to fresh sides more effectively. Armor just determines your endurance, short of getting nuked your Warship is more likely to be mobility killed or rendered ineffective due to CIC or sensor damage by missiles.

Daryk

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #3 on: 21 January 2022, 20:15:05 »
I have to ask if you've read the rules on fire control tonnage for exceeding a certain number of weapons per arc.  You might have, given your MG example, but I just want to make sure.

AlphaMirage

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #4 on: 21 January 2022, 20:26:16 »
I have to ask if you've read the rules on fire control tonnage for exceeding a certain number of weapons per arc.  You might have, given your MG example, but I just want to make sure.

Also true because MGs are actually crappy point defense weapons when AMS are better (AMS on Small Craft in between you and said missiles, ever better!) and you need to be in some close knife fighting range to be capable of effectively engaging the enemy with standard weapons.

Wheturangi

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #5 on: 22 January 2022, 03:27:43 »
I have to ask if you've read the rules on fire control tonnage for exceeding a certain number of weapons per arc.  You might have, given your MG example, but I just want to make sure.

I read that. But I wanted clarification on the weapon bays first.
I'm getting the impression that it is the style of the ship that matters more than actual weapon configuration.
I know that Naval weapons make the difference as you need that range. Though accuracy is another issue.
This is all giving me ideas. I just wish the stats for the weapons were all in one place.
I'm enjoying the mental exercise. I use to design mechs in my head at one point while going to work. Just something to do on the bus, but now I got to brush up on my Excel and I know that will help.

Wheturangi

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #6 on: 22 January 2022, 03:33:26 »
Might I suggest checking out my Second Star League Guide to Warships in the Fanfic section (link below).

All the numbers are valid I just needed to make up my own fluff since Warships don't really exist in universe anymore. I have computed the basic stats of various weapon types and suggest strategies to optimize usage for different roles.

The best defense is range and velocity. Armor helps certainly but engaging further out helps your to hit chances while maintaining thrust allows you to survive by changing facing to fresh sides more effectively. Armor just determines your endurance, short of getting nuked your Warship is more likely to be mobility killed or rendered ineffective due to CIC or sensor damage by missiles.

Great guide. I know that you need naval weapons for the range. I kind of which Warship combat was simpler. Probably the best Starship combat was the old FASA Star Trek Starship Tactical Combat Simulator. Wish we had something simple like that. Battlespace/AT2 feels more like The Expanse to me.

I'm just enjoying learning the game system again.

BATTLEMASTER

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #7 on: 24 January 2022, 10:23:52 »
Have you considered using MegaMekLab for warship construction instead of making your own spreadsheet?  The only shortcoming I've encountered with it is ammo assignment, but I have a text-editing workaround for that.
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Tyler Jorgensson

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #8 on: 24 January 2022, 17:45:47 »
Have you considered using MegaMekLab for warship construction instead of making your own spreadsheet?  The only shortcoming I've encountered with it is ammo assignment, but I have a text-editing workaround for that.

Ammo assignment is the worst in the program: I’ve also had some trouble putting large amounts of weapons in bays and then copying the bays… but that’s honestly because I assign what weapons I want first then locations.

BATTLEMASTER

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #9 on: 24 January 2022, 19:12:15 »
Yeah, I've put in a couple suggestions to get the ammo placement fixed but they haven't gotten to it yet.  They know about it anyway.  Instead what I do is I assign a shot per weapon, save the file, then go into the file itself with a text editor and put the number of shots I want in place of the "1" I put there in the program.  Then I re-open the file in MegaMekLab and reconcile any issues with available mass afterward.
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idea weenie

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #10 on: 24 January 2022, 19:15:31 »
Have you considered using MegaMekLab for warship construction instead of making your own spreadsheet?  The only shortcoming I've encountered with it is ammo assignment, but I have a text-editing workaround for that.

My fun part is that when I allocated Capital weapons to a bay MML will create a "Capital (Weapon) Bay" and put the Capital weapon as part of it.  I then select to remove all weapons (to put them back in the right-hand listing), and MML then moves the weapons back and also moves the "Capital (Weapon) Bay" as well.

How to test it:
Open up MML
Create a 100 kton Warship, expanding the screen so there are no scroll bars when in the "Structure/Armor" tab
Add the necessary heat sinks, Officers, and crew Quarters to Validate the unit.
Go to the 'Equipment' tab -> Capital Weapons -> Add 8 HNPPC
Go to 'Assign Criticals' tab -> Drag and Drop a single HNPPC into the Forward left bay (creating a "Capital PPC Bay")
Click on the "Reset" button in the bottom right

Result:
The "Unallocatd Equipment" list on the right-hand side will list all eight of the HNPPC, along with a piece of equipment called "Capital PPC Bay" that masses zero tons.

Recommendation:
MML should not add the "Capital (Weapon) Bay" to the 'Unallocated Equipment' list


I am using Version: 0.48.0


For creating your own spreadsheet, it allows the designer to learn the spreadsheet software, and also allows for extra flexibility for House Rule ideas
(i.e. a Battle station that has station-keeping drives but SI higher than 1, though cannot jump)

Daryk

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #11 on: 24 January 2022, 20:43:42 »
Personally, I'm just not a fan of MML's UI.  SSW is my go to because I like it's UI.

Hammer

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #12 on: 25 January 2022, 11:15:29 »
I am using Version: 0.48.0

Lots of improvements in 0.49.6 version of MegaMekLab. You'd need to update to Java 11

For example


But the ammo issue still exists.
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idea weenie

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #13 on: 25 January 2022, 17:09:28 »
Lots of improvements in 0.49.6 version of MegaMekLab. You'd need to update to Java 11

For example
http://i.imgur.com/k1y5WkYl.png

But the ammo issue still exists.

The Megamek website still lists 0.48.0 as the main downloader, while 0.49.6 is still in development.  Should this web site be updated?

Also for the image you linked, what happens if you click on "Reset" in the bottom right corner of that MML screen?  Does MML only move the weapons back to the list, or does MML also move back the zero ton Capital (Weapon) Bay as well?

Hammer

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #14 on: 26 January 2022, 14:38:43 »
The Megamek website still lists 0.48.0 as the main downloader, while 0.49.6 is still in development.  Should this web site be updated?

From the 0.48.0 Stable Release.

Stable Releases versus Development Releases
There is a perception that Stable releases are bug free and Development (Dev) releases are buggy. A better way to think of it is our Stable releases are less likely to have game breaking bugs, but we can't guarantee they won't happen, while Development releases have new features and thus are more likely to have bugs. However, the more players using the development releases the faster we can find those bugs and fix them, thus getting us to new stables quicker. We often get asked about how do you run both. Simple, just have a folder for Stable and each development release gets its own folder.

Also for the image you linked, what happens if you click on "Reset" in the bottom right corner of that MML screen?  Does MML only move the weapons back to the list, or does MML also move back the zero ton Capital (Weapon) Bay as well?

It moves everything back to the Unallocated Equipment list including the bays. Which it shouldn't do it should delete those. So that would be a bug.
« Last Edit: 26 January 2022, 14:42:54 by Hammer »
MegaMek Projects Wiki
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New Units and RAT's aren't added until after the 2 month release moratorium is passed.


Wheturangi

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #15 on: 28 January 2022, 00:01:00 »
Have you considered using MegaMekLab for warship construction instead of making your own spreadsheet?  The only shortcoming I've encountered with it is ammo assignment, but I have a text-editing workaround for that.

That is one option, but I'm just upgrading my Excel skills. I'm also enjoying reading up on the mechanics and some of the lore. I kind of dropped out after 3060, so the whole Jihad thing is new to me. I'm more of the opinion that Warships are created for a look rather than designed for a purpose.

Lagrange

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #16 on: 29 January 2022, 11:24:08 »
W.r.t. spreadsheets, you might consider this one which is derived from CryHavoc's. 

The spreadsheet is brittle compared to MML, but it's good for showing you in detail what's going on.

theagent

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Re: Warship design questions
« Reply #17 on: 08 March 2022, 20:42:48 »
Don't forget that exceeding the per-arc limit for a WarShip means you need additional fire control systems...& putting 350 MGs in an arc puts you already at a x1.7 multiplier that affects all of the weapons in that arc.

So, for example, let's say you went with 350 MGs & a single NL55.  351 weapons / 30 = 17.55, rounded down to 17.  17 x 0.1 = a x1.7 multiplier.  350 MGs only weighs 175 tons...but the NL55 weighs 1,100 tons, for a total of 1,275 tons.  1,275 x 1.7 = 2,167.5 extra tons that is taken up by the extra fire control systems.  Essentially, your 350 MGs cost you more than the weight of a 2nd NL55.

I know, it's an extreme example.  But it's probably why most canon units don't mix a lot of light to heavy weapons of the same type, even for bracketing purposes.