How do I make 'realistic' space fighters? I want to make a relatively hard-scifi setting outside of a few things that will exist for the sake of plot and convenience, such as FTL.Space fighters make sense for taking down & defending satellites in a planet's orbit I guess, but nothing else in normal space warfare, since a missile would probably do its job better
The lost in space bubble fighter was a decent try.
>>23886553the only thing /tg/ knows about realistic space fights is that /tg/ doesn't know about realistic space fights
>>23886553>Space fighters make sense for taking down & defending satellites in a planet's orbitMissile and point-defense lasers still do a better job. If anything, gunships are more likely than speedy fighters. Get your missile payload as close as possible before firing off a barrage without risking the main carrier.
>>23886585That was the best thing about the movie.
>>23886553Best you're gonna get are space PT Boats, and even that's not very realistic.
Minovsky/Magical Particles make many/most forms of guided missiles impossible, requiring closer ranges to engage the target.
Bitching about space fighters on /tg/ is USUALLY tied to "b-b-but fuel" so just make your fighters have reactors same as your capital ships, such that they don't need refueling for a very, very, very long time.Or go the Dead Space route. In Dead Space, you do have huge ships, but you also have very small ships - such as gunships - that are pretty much just a cockpit and a room or two, but still have weapons and an FTL drive.
We do not know what space fighters would look like because we do not yet have any objectives for a space warship to begin with. That said, some people think fighters will look like cubes with a pilot that's strapped in REALLY WELL. Some think they will look like modern aircraft. Others think they'll be tiny versions of whatever spaceships end up looking like.
>>23886772>pretty much just a cockpit and a room or two, but still have weapons and an FTL drive.So, space PT Boats, like >>23886663 said.
I still think that the best way to portray space combat is by mimicking submarines, only everything seeks heat because of how difficult it is to mask heat in space. Really, the way they have to do those huge turns just to change direction in submarines fits well with momentum in space, though it'd be more extreme.
>How do I make 'realistic' space fighters? You don't.
>>23886811I prefer saying "FUCK REALISM" and treating space like an ocean, personally. Give me some grand 40k-style giant cathedral ships WITH WINDOWS FUCK YEAH duking it out within visual range.Brb changing pants.
Realistic space fighters are drones.Look up AKVs in Transhuman space. They are basically glorified missiles that can cary multiple independently targeted warheads, dogfight with other AKVs, and then crash into the enemy ship at high speed for the actual kill.The sentient AI that controls it is then re-activated from backups and loaded onto another AKV to do it again.The problem with space fighters is mostly that there probably won't be enough fuel to get back to the carrier once the mission is over. If you want to be menuvering fast enough to not be an easy target, you are going to run out of fuel fast. It's better to just focus on destroying the enemy and not worry about what happens after.This is a bad idea for anything with a human pilot for obvious reasons. While this would normally prevent space fighter jocks, if this is a transhuman setting, the AIs that control space combat drones might have the same kind of top gun personalities. Even worse, they are expected to crash.
>>23886846>muh fuelSee, I fucking called it.
>>23886839I'm not talking about what's coolest, specifically talking about what's probably the closest realistic interpretation TO MY KNOWLEDGE.Really, my autism is satisfied as long as there isn't fire or sound in space. Other than that, go wild.
>>23886772> so just make your fighters have reactors same as your capital shipsYeah, let's just put nuclear reactors on fighter jets too, while we are having brilliant ideas.
OP here.>>23886804I think they're more likely to look like a shuttle (if re-entry capable) or a plain rocket. >>23886728Mhm, I think something like this will help. I'm perfectly fine with inventing bullshit for the sake of plot/convenience so long as everything else makes sense. I mean, humans will be fighting aliens in my setting anyway.
>>23886859I actually do like space being silent, it adds atmosphere, but yeah, gimme dem close-range fights with boarding action and swarms of fighters and ships ramming each other, TAKING THE BRIDGE, etc, fuck yeah it's awesome.
>>23886867Presumably a space fighter is going to be larger than a fighter jet.
>>23886894The best part is, to satisfy my "Make fore/explosions realistic for space" thing, you really just make all explosions perfectly spherical. That's it. Just a series of small silent spheres of light (punctuated by one large one) that are quickly snuffed out, leaving the ship as a wreck.Maybe it's just me, but that looks more spectacular to me than the big noisy "Pew pew" and flaming wreckage explosions.
Everyone on /tg/ has this assumption that spaceships wi automatically see everything around them for millions and millions of kilometers, because "sensors." I don't think that's an accurate assumption, especially not for early spacecraft. In Aurora 4x, fighters are viable because active gravitational sensors have to be configured for a certain mass of ship. Smaller ships get progressively harder and harder to detect the less mass they have. Fighters occupy a niche in between "small warship" and "anti-ship missile," which allows them to get very close to an enemy fleet before being spotted. Furthermore, passive sensors on ships are relatively short-ranged, so the fighters' thermal signatures aren't detected early either. Unfortunately missiles are king in Aurora 4x so the strategy for fighters then is to launch missiles and retreat to their carrier or base. Beam/kinetic weapon fighters are next to worthless. In fact, there are only three viable strategies in that game: use fighters to launch huge salvos, load your actual warships with one-shot launchers to launch a single massive salvo, or play the long game of continuous missile fire and point defense fire between your fleet and theirs.I went off on a tangent there. The point is that fighters may work because sensors can't detect them until they're close enough that they can launch an attack from within their target's point defense bubble rather than outside of it.
>>23886553first off no inertia or friction in space. So piloting the thing will be a bitch and would require some form of propultion on all sides of the craft, which can be any size or shape. Second off any sort of impact is rediculous deadly due to the threat of any little hole being able to burst open pressurized bodies easily.Third, maneuvering would be time consuming and difficult, moving on a dime is rediculously hard to do and would take too much fuel.Space "fighters" would more or less be more efficient as stealthy things that just got a body or weapon to it's target or some form of payload they cant just jettison at the damned thing. Intercraft fighting would be a "who hit who first" kind of deal or a "can we intercept/stop the missile/projectile?" thing. If they have lasers then laugh because heat shields. The thing should have some form of gun that shoots shells. Which could double as an emergency propulsion device.
>>23886871Re-entry capable sub-orbital fighters might be a good idea actually. Not full spacecraft, but rather airplanes that launch, enter space, shoot things, and then re-enter. Might be useful as anti-satellite weapons.But I'm not sure how much more useful that would be compaired to a gunship already in orbit, or just a ground or air launched ASAT missile.Pic unrelated. A hard sci-fi looking space fighter. Even if it's not actually realistic it looks like something you'd see in the real world.
>>23886922Agreed, man. Homeworld 2 did that and it was cool as hell, send your laser corvettes in at the enemy Carrier, finally see it go up in a sphere of blinding light.
>>23886839Cathedral ships are for pansies, real men drive planets.
>>23886553Okay, take an AWACs-like built for space, put some virtual cockpit rigs in the sensor bay, now slave several lancer drones to those rigsSkilled pilots aren't put at risk but you still waste that delicious materiel in a cold-fire dogfight and have half of a chance of sneaking up and avoiding hostiles using thrust vectors that would kill an on-board pilotthe ECM tech also has a very important job, since it's up to him and the other sensops to keep enemy jamming off friendly connections and to punch through each bogey's encryption payload to drop another active hostile out of the fight
>>23886927>rediculouslyYou seem to think that's actually how the word is spelled.
OP again. >>23886937Well, I"ll just be satisfied with some plot device or technobabble like FTL would be for the sake of me wanting them to be there.I'm thinking that, the aliens tend to prioritize smaller craft infront of the larger one. So spacefighters launched in advance of the ship end up acting as fodder/bait for them.
>>23886971You seem to think that /tg/ is english class.
Space fighters?Nobody has had a WVR aircraft engagement in like twenty years in the fucking atmosphere, outside of exercises.
>>23886987You seem to think that repeatedly misspelling your words doesn't make you look like a dumbass.
>>23886977see >>23886957just add some fancy-schmasy ftl like pic related
Orbital warfare is the only way to make spacefighters.
Warfare againts pirates. Spacefighters would be glorified policemen.
>>23886867Really if you want to not be a scrub-teir bitch in spaceflight, you need atomic power. A fighter relying on chemical engines would have a much, much worse power to mass ratio. >>23886846> probably won't be enough fuel to get back to the carrier once the mission is overDepends on the mission. A fighter deployed for reconnaissance is going to turn around when they still have enough reaction mass to return to base. On a strike mission one might burn themselves out, but it's space: you don't crash when you run out of reaction mass. If you hit a stable orbit you can just wait and get recovered. Manned and unmanned have advantages, as do disposable vs recoverable platforms. The most realistic current "space fighter" concept would be a disposable chemical rocket with sensor and attack options, with an explosively propelled kinetic kill interceptors. Think of a bunch of rods on top of a bomb that get thrown like a shotgun at the target. Later, you might have a heavily armored sphere made to survive kinetic impactors like that and laser fire, as well as able to perform high acceleration in order to doge incoming attacks. A fusion reactor running on He3 with a bunch of hydrogen carried in order to feed thermal-plasma rockets. Likely unmanned, using missiles or a rail-gun to strike at targets. (A small space-fighter wouldn't have the radiator capacity for directed energy weapons)
>>23887003If they're unmanned, doesn't that remove some of the tension of the game?
>>23887017Not possible.The energy budgets involved in orbital plane-changed maneuvers are preposterous. You know why there are no space fighters?Because there's nothing to fucking fight over in space. You want to take out the enemy surveillance satellites? Great. It's SUBSTANTIALLY less expensive to stage a military action against the places that intelligence ends up than it is to send spacecraft up there to take them down. By at least two or three orders of magnitude.
>How do I make 'realistic' space fighters?You don't?There's a big difference between hard sci-fi and realism. The difference would be that hard scifi would try to explain the reasoning behind space fighters a bit while realism would completely omit them.
OP. Hollywood's favorite implement for this purpose is the space fighter, for the very good meta reason that the core audience relates more to studly/babelicious fighter jocks than middle aged starship commanders. Unfortunately, as readers of this blog (especially the thread that refuses to die) and Atomic Rockets know, it is very hard to justify single- or two-seat 'fighter' types in deep space combat under Realistic [TM] constraints of physics and technology.But in fact under these constraints it is difficult to model any form of deep space combat that justifies the expenditure of electrons to write it, much less expensive CGI to film it. The vastness and emptiness of the battlefield push inexorably toward a Lanchesterian engagement at Stupendous Range, featuring all the senseless destruction of war and none of the excitement. A commenter noted that it is a fight no one will show up for. In real life this would be a feature, not a bug, but for our purpose it's a bug and we want to zap it.As regular readers here know, a solution that I have been looking more and more at involves rethinking where combat happens, and under what circumstances. People fight over things of value, either natural bodies with Valuable Space Stuff, or human infrastructure. These will tend to be concentrated in certain areas, such as the orbital space of planets and large moons.Such regions might have multiple large habs and stations, with hundreds or thousands of smaller spacecraft forming constellations around them. Travel times in these regions are typically hours to days, not the weeks and months of deep space travel.http://www.rocketpunk-manifesto.com/2010/05/space-fighters-reconsidered.html
>>23887076Won't always be true, of course. Space is too rich in resources to ignore and at some point people will fight up there, sure as the sun rises.**Subjectively, from the perspective of people on the Earth's surface.
>>23887072Not if you're a robot.
>>23887076There's is. It's called teleoperated, industrial space stations.
>>23887072Right, but it's a short jump between>we just lost our combat platformsand>enemy platforms are on intercept vector with AWACsbasically, if you have a short-range drone comm trailer in spaaace, anything that breaks through the initial intercept point is a threat to the interests of your superiors and quite possibly a direct threat to your craftalso, it also the party to take heroic losses without having to immediately write a new character
>>23887102Nah, there's more than enough resources in our solar system alone to take care of the industrial needs of hundreds of billions of people. We won't get that far.[/spoiler[
>>23887102>space>richit is composed of infinite amounts of nothing interspersed with tiny amounts of matter, none of which is capable of paying for the cost of retrieving it.There's basically nothing up there, sport.
>>23887095A second consideration is that once you have true space politics, the 'natural' political unit is the individual station or hab. Its inhabitants are bound together by shared life support, while the hab itself can change orbit, even perhaps head off across deep space to some other region.So, instead of the traditional rocketpunk era scenarios, say Mars against Venus, a conflict might break out between two hab in Mars orbital space, while other habs remain neutral. 'Clutter' in space is a very relative thing - we are still talking about thousands of kilometers, but this is a far more complex operating environment than the empty vastness in which must discussion of space combat takes place.Both the physical and political environments are cluttered. Space taxis or inter-orbit shuttles will keep up a steady flow of traffic: between hostile and neutral stations, and between neutral and friendly stations. 'Everyone sees everything' is no longer so simple, because you don't see who or what might be aboard.The first class of military craft this environment invites is not space fighters, but a type for which there is no obvious name, although the bland 'patrol craft' and the perhaps overly nautical 'corvette' convey something of the idea. In its basic form it is simply a space taxi carrying a boarding and inspection team, and some armament to encourage compliance.
>>23887106>Not if you're a robotThe players are going to be human, though.>>23887130Eh, I don't know. And they're not really heroic if you don't risk dying.
>>23887165Such craft are the basis of space control, but they are not ideal platforms if shooting breaks out. They have to be large enough for a proper cabin, with airlock and perhaps a holding cell for detainees. Bulk it up with armament and it becomes a decent sized vehicle, roughly the size of a transport plane.For actual shooting we want something more compact and frankly cheaper, at least in human if not monetary terms. Often it need not be manned, and indeed whenever practical you'll operate it under robotic or remote control, cheaper operationally and much cheaper in 'we deeply regret' letters to families. But in particularly critical situations the rules of engagement will be too ambiguous to be trusted to robotics (short of 'true' high level AI, which currently is magitech).This does still leave the (preferred) option of remote piloting. In 'cluttered' space, ranges will generally be less than a light second, often much less, so light lag is not a real problem. On the other hand, the closer you get, the better the chance of communications interference. In the Vastness of Space, the prospects of jamming a tightbeam are close to nil. But in a close-in confrontation, something as simple as a puff of opaque smoke might block a tightbeam for a few critical seconds.Such regions might have multiple large habs and stations, with hundreds or thousands of smaller spacecraft forming constellations around them. Travel times in these regions are typically hours to days, not the weeks and months of deep space travel.
>>23887109Solution #1: Those resource have to be going somewhere. Blow that somewhere up.Solution #2: Send a missile to destroy the facility.Solution #3B: Automated defences getting in the way? Send a fucking shitload of missiles until that whole place stops going beep. Remember, with space mining we would technically be living in a post-scarcity industrial environment.
>>23887093Not necessarily. The hardest science fiction will deviate the least from established science. So a work of fiction set on a ship that doesn't have FTL will be more realistic than something like Star Trek where they use technobabble to justify giving the finger to science.
>>23887169I thought OP said 'realistic'. Realism in this case would be making it as easy as possible, hence putting a robot at the controls or more likely, something that can be controlled from a distance.
>>23887179So, in short, what one anon said about an AWACs boat or two being escorted by a drone hauler, possibly putting some drone hauling capability onto the ABs for the sake of redundancy
>>23887095>Stupendous range.This is a common myth, but one it's worth noting has little basis in reality. The speed of light is too slow and the size of space too large for fights to happen at truly crazy ranges.Missiles can't be practically made with huge amounts of delta V. Lasers can't be focused at thousand-kilometer distances without using exceptionally fragile mirrors dozens of meters across. Even huge rail guns could only fire projectiles at a small fraction the speed of light, keeping the engagement range comparatively low. Unless your target is unable to maneuver or lacks sensors, it can simply step out of the way of nearly any attack at truly stupendous distances.
>>23887198That's the difference between hard scifi and soft scifi.
>>23887181You are missing the point. Spacefighters would exist for the purposes of orbital warfare in low-intensity conflicts where using megaton lasers would be impractical at beast. What I am suggesting is something similar to the pacification missions done in the Middle East.
>>23887140You know, most of the solar system is space. >>23887157Literally everything, including the planet you are standing on right now, is up there. I'm thinking you don't really get non-geocentric universe models.
You're supposed to capitalize the 'S' in "AWACS" you numbskulls. It stands for "System."https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AWACS
>>23887243Just send a space boat with a boarding party instead. Or contact them and say 'comply or we'll fucking kill you'.
IDEAInstead of thinking of space fighters as, well, dogfighters with carriers & capital ships in the naval sense, think of this.The premise is that the planets in the solar system are at war. Your engagements don't occur in deep space, nor do they occur with the possibility of FTL. There are no relativistic speed weapons. You do have reasonably fast spacecraft - such that you could get to Mars from Earth in let's say a week. Fuel is still a concern, but you can accelerate a smaller mass more easily/with less energy than large masses. So now you have somewhat small, somewhat fast, fighters fighting at somewhat close range - still well beyond visual, but most likely near planets, space stations, occupied asteroids, or places of interest. Truly devastating weapons, nukes, EMPs, mass drivers, would likely be avoided by most civilized/industrialized nations due to the bad PR / likelihood of hitting a civilian target. Dogfighting above a planet? Well, most of your misses will probably enter the atmosphere or strike the surface, etc.
>>23886839Reality is not a prison, reality is a canvas.You see inertia and absence of frictions, and you see a problem. It's not like the dogfighting on earth, so you don't want to think about it. You want it to be like something you know. So you change the universe and the rules, making them inconsistent and bland, but at leas it's something you know.I see inertia and absence of frictions, and I see opportunity. New ways to dogfight, new difficulties for the pilots, new manoeuvres possible. You can play with a planet gravity, you can go in a way and be pointed in another direction, you must fight in 3 dimensions... That's new ways to think, new ways to play.TL;DR, you're a disgusting unimaginative filthy casual. Don't touch me.
You want a bullshit reason so something impractical is suddenly practical? Basically some reasons for humans to not be retarded?The spacefighters are alien/archaeo technology.I used a similar reason to justify mecha in one game. In a world that's essentially in the 1890s, you have Pre-Fall mecha that survived ala Turn A Gundam. The tech gap between 'current' tech and pre-fall tech would be so great that a 17m robot makes sense to deploy.
>>23887286so, another point for AEW&Cs and Drones method of dogfighting thenthe only time we might see [military] vessels larger than these patrol/hauler/controller corvettes is in a proper planetary assault, bombardment, or counter-bombardment - and even then one needs to consider the feasibility of just slaving several mono-cannon sleds to a dedicated AEW&C compared to loading all that equipment onto a single armored shell with extra crew to account>tfw battleships are clusters of long-range lasers on rockets with a couple C3 boats and maintenance corvettes tagging along
>>23887264In general, the more un-pristine the environment, the more human level intelligence has to be on the spot, not acting from a distance, whether the spatial distance of remotes or the temporal distance of robotics.The basic fighter concept that emerges from this line of thought could be remarkably low tech. The cockpit might resemble the EVA pods in 2001; we are looking at one day habitability. Propulsion is probably chemfuel, with plenty of short term oompf and enough delta v for the sorts of missions we are undertaking.Space fighters in this sceneario, like the patrol craft / corvettes they often escort, are in fact not primarily weapons of destruction. They are weapons of coercion. If they open fire, things have already gone pear shaped, and you're in a scramble to keep them from getting entirely out of hand.
>>23887303Fuck yeah, vectored thrusters and turrets! Fuck yeah, Itano Circus missile barrages testing your 3d piloting skills!But sadly, these are more likely big-ass drones, controlled by people sitting in front of their screens either twitching a joystick or jacking up neural interfaces. But! This raises an interesting question...What if this is the future of combat AND e-sports? Never mind DOTA, never mind Counter Strike, play a real life customized drone rig! Best local contender gets a corporate sponsorship, and they don't care if you used to be a space pirate! You get to be FAMOUS and get WADS OF E-CASH!
>>23887286Option 2Assuming space craft are plentiful - then there should be a LOT of small craft - shuttles, cargo transports, taxis, tugs, dockers, 'Hubs' that join with other ships and offer services, like markets, or banking. All it takes is for some bad group to adapt weapons to these small ships and then attack someone. Now everyone weaponizes, for self defense. Now you have a bunch of non-combat ships, with jury-rigged weapons systems, crewed by inexperienced nobodies, in a volatile situation. With that setup, you'll have close range fights - because you won't hit a damn otherwise, since you have terrible hodge-podged weapons and mismatched sensors - and secondly, you can't be sure someone is hostile until they act hostile, and they won't do that until They are close. Big ships might exist, but would be massively expensive, when you could build X many small attack ship which are less vulnerable to a single shot takeout. Treat it more like modern day pirates and rebels and less dominant world power.
>How do I make 'realistic' space fighters? I want to make a relatively hard-scifi setting outside of a few things that will exist for the sake of plot and convenience, such as FTL.Make a list of scifi things you want in the game, ask for some scifi things your players want in the game. Make a dot-point for every thing on that list explaining how it works and how it fits into the setting within a single paragraph. If it doesn't fit in a paragraph or you can't explain why it fits into the setting, scrap it or rethink it until it does. You don't need 'realism', you only need 'interesting'.It's a fucking RPG setting anyway, when you start detailing and justifying shit for no real reason you're going to get a lot of eyeballs rolling around in their sockets. What if your players have no suspension of disbelief? Well shit, don't play with autists. It's a game, not a treatise on fictional astrophysics."Space fighters are used by the Terran Republic as a useful and cheap response and patrol unit for their burdening population. They're usually piloted by conscripts, who are well respected in the colonies. A unit of eight fighters is attached to an external rigging on a larger patrol craft, the pilots have to make a dangerous spacewalk in order to enter their vehicles."The specific details 'why' is best left to come out during play, otherwise, don't worry about it. Don't even try to give a shit about the 'how'.
>>23887286Kinda doubt the usefulness of mass drivers that have enough mass or enough speed to do reasonable damage to a planet. You don't need a nuke that can blow up a city, an EMP that can cloak a planet, or a gun that has as much potential energy as an asteroid to do catastrophic damage to what are essentially glass boxes floating in death.
>>23887405Iunno, IMHO it'd be cheaper to replace those conscripts with a lighter drone holding the same payload and operated by a crack crew whose popularity is helped along and exaggerated by the various factions of Republican propaganda machines, sometimes even hurt
>>23887451This does still leave the (preferred) option of remote piloting, yes. Enter JAMMERS. In 'cluttered' space, ranges will generally be less than a light second, often much less, so light lag is not a real problem. On the other hand, the closer you get, the better the chance of communications interference. In the Vastness of Space, the prospects of jamming a tightbeam are close to nil. But in a close-in confrontation, something as simple as a puff of opaque smoke might block a tightbeam for a few critical seconds.
>>23887458Eh, in a space furball I'd think that tightbeams might have some trouble keeping up with each other; I mean, you basically need a point-to-point laser comm that can pickup, orient and send back a signal while undergoing heavy jinkingit's more likely to be wild weasel EWar and F22 "I'm pinging you, but your sensor can't even see my ping" shenanigans, I'd think
>>23887286Earthrise was flooding the hab with light from below as we swept out over what looked like a gorgeous day in the South Pacific and the cute little blonde thing beside me gasp at the flare of something small breaking nearby, engines firing hard for it's small size. "What's that?" I don't know if she was talking to me, but I've always been unable to resist an earnest question. A touch to the controls turned up the magnification on a small window, turning the point of light to a close up image of the egg-shaped thing, four dark "wings" projecting out at right angles. "It's a Raven space-superiority fighter. Pretty much just a reactor and engines wrapped around a gun." "Why is it round?"A faint smile, remembering my own disspointment at the inelegant look. "Sphere makes it as small as possible for the internal volume. It needs to be heavy enough to survive someone throwing a cloud of sand at it or shining a diffused laser on it, but armor's heavy, so you want to use as little as you can.""It has a big gun right?" The little moppet bounces as the spinal railgun's stubby muzzle becomes visible while the ship turns under us, Hawaii flashing past at twelve kilometers a second."That's right. The railgun can get a five gram round up to 500 kilometers a second. That's about.. .. six hundred megajoules." The kid's eyes get wide and look from me to the small spaceship. "Can it blow up a planet?" The question makes me laugh a little. "No.. It can go though about a meter of armor though." The small blonde seems a little disspointed to learn the small ship can't destroy planets, or even blow up a decent sized town. "But it's fast though?" "Real fast. Forty five meters per second squared acceleration. If she had enough reaction mass she could go from here to Mars in a couple days"
>taking down & defending satellites in a planet's orbit They don't even make sense for that. Dedicated ASATs have been around since the 1980s. Space fighters just don't make a whole lot of sense, and it isn't just the fuel thing. The sole point of dedicated fighter aircraft is to win local or regional air superiority in order to prevent or assist other aircraft in delivering ordinance to tactically or strategically important targets unharried. The advent of autonomous long range guided missiles, drones, and stealth have essentially brought the era of the fighter to a close. In order to realistically have fighters in any future setting, space or otherwise, you need to have small craft that can deliver a lot of hurt but still be destroyed by other small craft. I just can't see that happening in space. Even if you hand wave away all the problems with range, payload, and avionics, you still have to deal with the fact that space allows a force to essentially do the modern equivalent of flying a battleship right up next to a factory and unload on it. Not much room for a fighter in that world.
>>23887451I'm looking at this from a gamist perspective, not a realism one.OP wants players piloting space fighters? So I gave him the means to do so, and a little example. We aren't /sci/, it's not our job to worry about realism.When creating any kind of setting for an RPG, overthinking is the one thing more likely to kill it than anything else.
>>23887443 I'm assuming that the planetary settlements / cities are equally as fragile. Glass biodomes and so forth. Weaker weapons than Meganukes, but still, going to mess stuff up if it hits anything. >>23887405You make a good point. Agreed. Build coherency and interest, not realism.
>>23886553First don't put a glass covered cockpit on the front of your ship. That's the stupidest thing ever.Instead nestle all the important controls in the belly of your ship and have the flight crew physically see what's in front of them through cameras, though this is unnecessary.Secondly don't put wings on it, there is no need for wings unless it is meant to operate in atmosphere.Remember the fastest way to turn a fighter in space is to have thrusters at multiple angles. Keep the design tight, having exuberant wings is useless and they could get caught..Any weapons should not be fixed, but able to pivot and definitely not on limbs, as that would raise unnecessary complications with energy transfer to weapons.Since space combat would no doubt occur at incredible ranges with energy weapons design your ship with plating that looks like it could throw radar.
>>23887557Im this guy.>>23886937This guy knows what up.
>>23887532>not much room for a fighter in that worldexcept battleships or, hell, even destroyers and other escorts are xboxhueg investments in time, funding, and reaction mass that most transorbital powers won't have the logistics to maintaina battleship is more likely something like a gun the size of a corvetter maneuvered and control by another corvette alongside several other corvette-sized self-propelled gun dronesreally likin this 'cloud battleship' concept
>>23887443Unless the other guy is coming at you in a weaponized nickle-iron asteroid with four meter thick walls.
>>23887548right, but running it as drone-controllers in a hotseat just off-shore of the fighting is, when you get down to actually playing the damn game, as tense, exciting, and engaging as having the PCs being inside the combat zone AND all without the hassle of losing a character to an ill-timed jink or piloting checknow if the party totally screws up then their command/control corvette thingy could be the next target of their victorious foe, but they still have several minutes to raise a flag or beat a retreat even after they've lost their compliment of dronesI mean, unless you enjoy paranoia-levels of reincarnation
>>23887519Thank you for writing that. You're a cool anon, friend.
>>23887548Well, see, I want to have manned fighters without just ignoring that the people are being retarded.I may go with the minovsky particle effect and "the sentient alien swarms typically don't ignore the space fighters".
>>23887570>assuming assumptionsWho knows what would cost what? It's all a bunch of made up shit for now anyway. However, I'd imagine a space elevator and an orbital factory would really cut down on the cost of making big space things.I do like your cloud idea, though.
>>23887571>on a static vectorseriously, any idiot who tries that outside of the first or second generation of orbital conflict will be getting several pounds of hypervelocity tungsten up his center torso rear courtesy of the unified orbital defense networkthe only time somebody who gre up in the era of ramapant space habitats would do something like that would be as part of a large body of kamikaze attacks a la 9/11
>>23887627eh, I don't want to argue on assumptions, but just guessing with even projected trends in propulsion development, craft designers will still be shaving off every last microgram from their prototype before it hits production runit's kind of absurd, like the dinghy being the most effective naval craft, but in space tonnage is going to be king in the exact opposite way it is inside atmo
>>23887637TERRAN FEDERATION DID BUENOS AIRES
Ok, question. I admit that this is diving into the realm of implausible science, but thematically, would it be an interesting handwavium to say that ships can generate (very) small, unstable (very temporary) black holes from their reactor's power plant. The premise being that they can deploy these black holes very near to their ships as a means of gravity assisted propulsion, and possibly point defense.For example reasons, lets say that a ship can produce a finite but large number of these black holes (a few thousand - before 'refueling'). Let's say that they can be deployed within a few meters of the outer hull of the ship. Assuming the size of the black hole is (very) tiny, such that the ship is not in danger of hitting the swartzchild radius before it's short duration runs out. Since it can be deployed around the ship, it can be used to alter acceleration in any direction - although you still have to fight inertia. I guess you also have to assume that such small & temporary black holes would have enough gravimetric force to be practical as an accelerant. Anyway, it's a premise for a story I've had in my head for a while. I figured you might like to discuss it. This thread seemed appropriate.
>>23887671Dinghy is the king of space warships.Kinda rewrites the trope of the pirate in a rowboat, eh?
>>23887616Meh, just say that jamming and chaff are too common for teleoperation, and automated systems aren't up to the task of handling the complexities of a fighter's missions. You don't have to work too hard on it. >>23887615Hey, no problem. >MoreThe kid seemed satisfied by that, not asking how much reaction mass a Raven carries. I'd already gone into classified specs but it hardly seemed to matter there, and like I said.. I've never been able to resist an earnest question. "Why dose the gun only point forward?" "Recoil. The gun pushes back on the ship hard enough to flip over a fully loaded semi-truck every time it shoots. Any fragile mount and the gun would just fly off into space every time you shot it, and if it wasn't lined up with the ship to balance it it would make it spin when you fired it." The child grins at the idea of that, giggling as I push on one hand stretched out, showing how it spins.. then the middle of the chest, showing how it just pushes backward. "Why not a laser or a death beam or a missile?" "Death beams are too expensive" I joke, then more seriously. "Missiles can be shot down by lasers. The Raven has a laser that can let off a five megajoule shot. It's not worth much on armored ships but it's good to disable secondary systems outside the armor hull. Not much range though.. with a half meter telescope it's only good for about a hundred kilometers. You use it to shoot down incoming missiles." I zoom in on the optical cluster on the Raven's round hull. "Missiles need mass-launches to get past defensive laser fire. A Raven can't carry enough to make it worth while, but they often close in along with missiles. That way the bad guys have to split their defensive missiles and lasers between missiles and fighters."
>>23887637Static vector? You want to weaponize an astroid you are going to put engines on it.
>>23887774As a compromise give pilots Iron Man-esque AI assistants.Actually scratch that, make them pilot iron man suits and gundams.
>>23887754I've got a better one for ya, actually two.Look into the Biefeld-Brown effect and the Searl Effect Generatorthe BBE is grounded in a kinetic principle of high-voltage capacitors though the full conclusion of the technology is dubious at best; but it's still a hundred times better than most soft sci-fi accelerantsany black hole small enough to be portable and not a danger to the generating craft is practically useless unless super-fine control is involved, and even then, you'd need a blanket of them to even try any of that acceleration wankery
Space fighters are sort of a bad idea, considering that war in spess will be extremely fast.Drone better, controlled by capital ships.
>>23887848but capitals ships cost mucho buckaroos; AEW&C corvettes are a cheaper, more flexible alternative for the Vassal Force on a budget
Question about lasers.So, mirrors reflect visual spectrum light.I (naively) assume that there exists materials that can likewise reflect other wavelengths. Could you not just then wrap a missile in multiple layers of reflective film? Assuming that for any given intercept laser, that some film will be burned through until it hits a reflective layer, but then be relatively safe? You would need to hit it with several lasers simaltaneously, or in pulses to destroy it. Is there such a thing as a laser that fires on multiple wavelengths at once? Can an object being hit by a laser detect the wavelength, and emit energy in an anti-wave (waveform designed to destructively interfere with the laser wavelength - negating the hit)? Am I right, or way off base with this stuff?
>>23887892Damage comes from the heat. Any mirror would be melted in a matter of seconds. What you need is a heat-resistant material.
>>23887892by the time you are dealing with the energy levels of weaponized lasers there is no way to make a mirror perfect enough to reflect it. there will always be imperfections. also, even if through some magic you did have a perfect mirror, it would get retardedly hot after being hit. repeated hits would cause it to vaporize anyway.
>>23887875By capital ships, I wasnt talking about hueg Warhammer 40k planet-rapists, but something more or less the size of the Normandy.
>>23887933yeah, still too big; you're looking at a c-130 with most of the cargo space devoted to propellant and life support with just enough spare operations space for AEW&C gear, firecons, and the occasional passenger or two
>>23887892It's very hard to weaponize any wavelength that doesn't have a good mirror, because you need a mirror to focus a energy beam at long distances. On the other hand, most mirrors are only really good across some wavelenths. You could wrap a ship in layers of different mirror, but the heat and energy that would be absorbed by the non-reflective layers would damage the reflective layers. (A thin layer of highly polished silver to reflect light covered by a layer of radar-reflective aluminium could be ripped apart when the aluminium explodes under a hit by an IR laser.) There aren't lasers that fire on several wavelenths at once, but their are tune-able lasers that can be shifted in the spectrum they generate.
>>23887754When you say very tiny, do you mean having very small dimensions? Not very big around? Because by definition all black holes are the same size - infinitesimally small. Its the event horizon that differs in size.Or by tiny did you mean 'of very low mass'? Because in that case, its also going to have a very low acceleration - black holes aren't a magic vacuum cleaner. A black hole with the mass of the Earth will have the gravitational pull of the Earth. A black hole with the mass of Jupiter will have the gravitational pull of Jupiter. etc.Personally I don't like the idea for the reason that anything that can create a black hole has a much better method of propulsion available.
>>23887933>hueg Warhammer 40k planet-rapists40k ships are really tiny compared to planets. Space stations are enormous and certain special spacecraft are equally sized, but regular ships are tiny things. Usually no more than 6 km long.
>>23887925>>23887906>>23887837Thanks for the answers and BBE SEG info. Looking them up now.
>>23887951But now we're on boring territory :(>>23887971By planet rapist, I meant ships who are so huge their batteries alone can fuck up a continent.
>>23887925>>23887906Acutely, it's easy to reflect even weapons level of laser energy if you have a decent mirror. A simple silver mirror could reflect megawatts of energy without heating much, if the energy is applied across the wavelengths the mirror is reflective in.
>>23886772>Bitching about space fighters on /tg/ is USUALLY tied to "b-b-but fuel" so just make your fighters have reactors same as your capital ships, No. Clearly you didn't understand the objections of the people you're shrugging at any of the previous times, but I'm going to try and explain it to you again anyway.Propulsion in space isn't limited by energy like you'd get from a 'reactor'. Its limited by /reaction mass/. You have to fling something backwards in order to go forwards. This is why space travel is more practical the bigger the ship - because your ship is going to need to be 99% reaction mass, and the more massive the ship, the more stuff you can squeeze into the remaining 1%.There are no actions without equal and opposite reactions. You cannot get around the need for reaction mass or you have left science fiction and entered fantasy.
>>23887998>A simple silver mirror could reflect megawatts of energy without heating much, if the energy is applied across the wavelengths the mirror is reflective in.YeahNahYou're full of shit.
No point to space warfare. You need an orbit which is easy to track and hit. You must really want someone dead to start a space war. Planets are tougher then you realize, and ships are highly limited to what they can produce for combat. Every ounce on a ship is like forty metric tons of what we take for granted per person on earth. (look up economy produce, procedures and what a human uses/produces/gets rid of in a years time + consumption)
>>23888007Without cryogenic cooling or anything fancy you can reflect a megawatt off of a 1 meter silver mirror. With cryogenic cooling you can reflect hundreds of megawatts off of a silver mirror.
>>23887964I had meant tiny as in a small event horizon. But with the intention of having those black holes have enough mass to have a powerful gravitational pull. Which, I now realize are related. More mass = larger event horizon.And you make a good point about 'if they have black holes on demand, they have better options'. It was kinda like "I wanted to use them for propulsion, but not in a way that made them obvious go-to weapons. Weaponized black holes just empty the battlefield. Everyone loses. Go home."I guess that my heart is still set on Sci-Fantasy in the style of Ray Bradbury. Thanks for the response though.
>>23887998Why do you think that? Where did you hear that? That is completely untrue. Lasers burn through mirrors easily. Have you never taken a course in physics?
>>23887993Man, if you watch any space opera these days, a good 50% of all drama is in the CIC, these corvettes are basically a CIC independent of a ship, you just give it a different escort of dogfighter drones and SPGs depending on the mission and BAM modular litoral combat ship/battlegroup in fucking SPAAACEyou can even pair then with proper direct-fire corvettes for ALL of the drama in a naval engagement AND all of the drama in foreign crew relations; every boat has its own crew, some crews might have worked together before or served multiple tours, other boat crews might get shunted around battlegroups and pick up numerous preceding reputations, real or imaginedit's basically the perfect setting for a party of players to serve in a military/paramilitary organisation; you can literally cut and paste drama ad hoc
>>23888053Ray Bradbury wrote space sci-fi? I didn't know that.You should read a little bit of Larry Niven. He's very entertaining and his science is pretty accurate. Or just go here and read 'The Kzinti Lesson' http://www.larryniven.net/kzin/worlds.shtmlThe best website for sci-fi is here: http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/index.phpIt gives great, accessible explanations of how space travel really works and talks about its role in sci-fi.
>>23888038No that is completely untrue. You cannot support that statement. No-one listen to this crazy person.
>>23888063Because I'm not retarded. I have worked with high energy lasers in the past. To generate a laser with most modern techniques you need mirrors that reflect the wavelength of the laser. You can heat a mirror with a laser in a wavelength that it isn't reflective in. For example, anything about 500 nanometers will be mostly absorbed by silver. But anyone that isn't fucking stupid knows that.
>>23888133>>23888063>>23888007I fucking hate people that pretend to be retarded. Please god, let them be pretending.
>>23888117Nice link. Thanks. Adding it to the reading list. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Martian_Chronicleshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Machineries_of_Joyhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R_is_for_RocketI've only read some of his short story collections, but they have a nostalgic, romantiziced view of space. Cigar-shaped rockets burning nuclear fire, spacemen with rayguns, aliens as native american analogues (but done tastefully - don't let Avatar ruin this for you). Very, uh, 1950s Americana mixed with what we thought space travel would be like (but were way off base).
>>23888247>hurrr ur wrong i wont say y ur just dumpYou seem pretty fucking retarded yourself kiddo.
>>23888286He's probably just pretending in order to troll you.
This is kinda related.What kind of terrain would you guys use for space combat, if any? Earth has cities, tunnels, trenches etc. But space has...space and maybe a few asteroids
>>23888369Stellar debris fields, discarded booster sections, abandoned space stations, refueling centers, wrecked vessels ...
>>23888369intercept vectors, planned delta-v expenditure limitations, pre-engagement volleys of railgun fire and sleeping missiles (aka space mines), that one station, asteroid cluster, or orbital insertion window the winner will controlspace is a more abstract battlefield
>>23888369Would I use? A space junkard of old ships and stations and asteroids dragged over for mining, half hollowed out then thrown away like discarded orange peels. Would realistically happen? MATH MATH MATH.
>>23886553Put alcubierre drives on the fighters. Their job is to fly at enemy ships at 90% of lightspeed and then brake sharply, vaporising the enemy with a massive particle jet.http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/140635-the-downside-of-warp-drives-annihilating-whole-star-systems-when-you-arrive
>>23888421so, the direct opposite of chickenspace chicken
>>23888369tl;dr in realism:orbits are rangedelta-v is fuel and ammoinsertion windows are weatherrange over 1 lightsecond is camouflagerange under 1 lightsecond is reaction timemissile buses are shotgunslasers are radar, knives, shields, sniper rifles, and artillerystealth is a bad joke lol
OKay, so realistically, what things do you need to kill a person in space? To answer this, we need to know what space is. The answer to this is that space is big.So, how do you kill a small thing in a big place? Well, first you need to find the thing. This means you need very sophisticated ways of finding your targets. Electronics are key.Then, after you've found your target, you need some way of killing it. Here's where it gets tricky, because you might be able to find a target at a large distance, but do you actually have any weapons that could feasibly reach your target before he moves/takes them out?These two factors are probably going to decide how space combat would look like.
>>23888531Your whole approach is really misleading.>> This means you need very sophisticated ways of finding your targets.Are you implying stealth could exist? If you're generating ANY heat in space, you're making a very obvious target for yourself from very large ranges.
Please upvote this on suptg. This thread has had some worthwhile content.
One way to make spessships interesting would be to explore the whole Freeman Dyson let's-use-nukes-for-propulsion-thing. Why not have a ship crap out nukes that explode behind it as thrusters/making it go faster.Warning: I know dick about physics.
>>23888645Does it? It seems the same as all other realistic space combat threads we have.
>>23888522>tl;dr in realism:>orbits are range>delta-v is fuel and ammo>insertion windows are weather>range over 1 lightsecond is camouflage>range under 1 lightsecond is reaction time>missile buses are shotguns>lasers are radar, knives, shields, sniper rifles, and artillery>stealth is a bad joke lolQFT
This is realistic and is based on real life research and developmentthe MiG space fighteralso dynasoar
the dynasoar fighter
MiG space fighter
>>23888531>how do you find things in spaceTelescopes. Do a wide low-res sweep to find spacecraft (since even shielded life support systems stand out like a bonfire in a desert night), then zoom in to max resolution (although you only need a few blurry pixels to know how big, how fast, and where the ship is going).>how killThe convenient thing about lasers, for RPG purposes, is that they use almost identical equations as telescopes. The resolution you can see is the resolution you can hit.So here's a rough approximation of low-end laser ranges. Obviously, larger lenses mean better resolution and range - a planetary one is serious business - but these are for 1 to 10 meter scale lasers.100km: modern lasers abruptly put into space1,000km: near-future visible lasers10,000km: slightly better future visible lasers100,000km: integrated soft x-ray lasers or fresnel UV lasers1,000,000km+: low end zone plate x-ray lasers
>>23886553Look at a Traveller setting called "2300ad"It has a realistic vibe comapared to many other sci-fi settings (No AG, ship-to-ship is missiles, zero g movement)
>>23888731It's for worthwhile threads that people may want to see. Using suptg that way is more relevant than something else since nobody will create a pastebin list of 'good threads'. Plus, it shows newfags what good threads are
>>23888705Same reason you don't move your car by lighting the gas tank on fire and throwing it in the opposite direction you want to go.
>>23888912>lighting the gas tank on fire and throwing it in the opposite direction you want to goIf there's a better image of how space travel works, I can't think of it.
Remote-controlled drones aren't an option, because space is big and battles often start when the capital ships are still several light hours from each other. By the time the drones get within firing range, they'll be too far away for realtime remote control, because signals only travel at lightspeed. Missiles aren't an option either, because point defense lasers prevent anything from getting that close.So, you send out fighters to close the distance and engage the enemy at realtime range. I've come to the conclusion that AI makes more sense than human pilots, since an AI can deal with more G-forces without being squished, but if you're willing to handwave it and give the fighter's inertial dampeners or some other such space magic than human pilots are a go.