Monday, 31 August 2009

Blog Banter 11 - The many heads of the Hydra

It's time for the blog banter again... now I know I didn't take part in last months - to be honest, it was a bit too deep and philosophical for me, plus I had a really bad time with a possible redundancy situation at work (which has now been resolved and I'm keeping my job for the forseeable future) so my mind wasn't really on the game at the time. Should be back to strength for this one though.

This month's banter comes to us from Joe Brusati a long time reader of CrazyKinux's Musing, who asks the following: CCP states that T3 Strategic Cruisers are just the start for the T3 line-up. In future Eve expansions what would you like to see as the next T3 ship type. Please be specific on details about what role this ship would play, cost of manufacturing, and the different modules that would be available for it, and of course you must give your T3 ship a name!

So I guess tech 3 cruisers are a bit of a speciality of mine at the moment, what with my 'still to finish' series on them and the tech 3 building article in the recent EON magazine.

I was racking my brain thinking of something that was new and unique in the universe of eve, and thought 'why has there never been any passenger ships available to transport a few players' ?

Whilst I dont think that a passenger ship would be worthy of the expense and hassle of making a tech 3 ship, my mind wandered back to the cartoons of the 80's where more often than not, the superhero group that the show revolved around had a ship that was made of many constituent parts, which all joined together to make a larger, more powerful ship. This is the basis of my proposal - the Hydra (and just for the record, I dont really mean Power Rangers, I'm thinking about the big transformers that were made of lots of smaller transformers, or possibly even Voltron... but I guess Power Rangers count as well)

As everyone with a knowledge of mystical creatures knows, the Hydra is a beast with 5 heads... and thats the basis of my design.

4 pilots control an individual frigate sized ship, which are constructed as a completely independant ship, but without any 'subsystems' as such, each ship would be a subsystem. The price for each of these ships would be around about the price of a current tech 3 subsystem (40-50 million ideally) and be equal in power to an assault ship. A fifth pilot would control a cruiser sized ship, which was about equivalent to a HAC type assault ship individually, and be around about the same price (100-150 million or so) which would also act as the central host ship.

Each of the pilots could then fly within 2km of the host (or be together in station) to form a larger ship, which is about the equivalent in ability to a command ship.

Now for the complicated bit - how to determine the power of the ship. Obviously you couldn't use the individual weapon systems of the component ships, as you would end up with lots of frigate sized guns. In my view, the host ship (and therefore cruiser sized weapons) should determine what the fittings are on the resultant ship - the individual smaller ships which connect to it will provide bonuses based on the joint skill levels of all pilots involved. The host ship needs an interfacing skill which will allow up to 4 of the smaller ships to connect (level 1 skill to use your own ship, each level after that to add one additional ship) and each of the smaller ships can contribute towards a bonus towards engineering, propulsion, defence and offence in a smilar way to the current subsystem skills.

The real benefit of this ship over a single man tech 3 ship would be that you could potentially have up to 20 levels of skill bonuses (up to level 5 in each category by each subcomponent ship pilot) to provide a greater bonus than what is offered at the moment, making a much more deadly ship, with the obvious risk involved in that one person controls the risk for 5 pilots.

Much like the subsystem choices with the current tech 3 ships, each of the frigate type ships would contribute different bonuses, but it would need a bit of testing to make sure that 4 pilots contributing towards a 'armour hitpoint' boost wouldn't make it have rediculous amounts of armour, much as we have seen with tech 3 ships, you can have upwards of 400,000 hitpoints with the correct modules and implants, you wouldn't want a battlecruiser sized ship with the same defences as a titan for instance!

I'm still undecided if the individual pilots could control invididual weapons/systems of the host ship, or if this would be too unwieldy to organise, and if the 4 other pilots would play no real part in the running of the larger 'combined' ship other than being additional eyes for the host to keep him informed of whats happening around him/her.

So there you have it... an idea born from too many years watching cartoons in my youth... I'm really interested in seeing what others have dreamt up.

List of Participants:
  1. A Mule in EvE - ‘Thor’ the Minmatar T3 ~ Banter #11
  2. One Man and His Spaceship - Blog Banter 11 - The many heads of the Hydra
  3. Inner Sanctum of the Ninveah - Strategic Capitals
  4. Achernar - Strategic Battlecruisers: the Spiders
  5. Journey to New Eden - Eve Blog Banter #11: Introducing the T3 Strategic Mining Barge
  6. Kyle Langdon's Journey in EVE - Strategic.... EVE Blog Banter #11
  7. The Captain's Log - Blog Banter 11: Increasing our knowledge of the universe
  8. Deaf Plasma's EVE Musings - Eve Blog Banter #11 - a ship called Starfury
  9. Yarrbear Tales - Blog Banter 11: T3 Destroyers
  10. Break Vol - Blog Banter #11
  11. Harbinger Zero - EVE Blog Banter #11: T3 Landing Craft
  12. Diairy of a Pod Pilot - Blog banter #11: Strategic frigates
  13. Mike Azariah - Blog Banter #11


Anonymous said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Anonymous said...

Interesting ideas. I like the idea of a large ship made up of smaller ships, it would certainly increase small group play and perhaps the ability to join together would make for a tough fight to say the least.

Rakanishu said...

Go go Power.. frigates?

Mike Azariah said...

Cool idea but it would be difficult to make it interesting for the 'crew' who were not piloting unless you assigned specifric systems to each player. Torso gets the helm, right arm gets missles, left gets guns, ecm to the head . . . . then you would need a well tuned team to be able to bring all the fire and power to bear on a single target.

I fear this would be beyond the current coding of Eve but oh, wouldn't it be awesome