Friday, August 3, 2012

BV and Deep Thoughts

Real quick update!

So I wrote the code today to calculate aerospace and conventional fighter BV (and it should work the same for small craft and dropships), and there are some major differences.

HeavyMetalPro has completely different formulas than the Tech Manual.  I ended up going with the Tech Manual rules, hopefully that was a correct assumption.  Some differences:

  • TM multiplies SI for DBV by 2, not 1.5
  • TM multiplies armor by 2 by default, not 2.5 (or the actual armor type modifier, which varies)
  • TM has no DBV reductions for explosive ammunition 
  • TM has no DBV for Fuel
  • TM has no OBV modifiers for bomb load
So basically, I completely understand why there is no BV2 for aerospace forces around, as there is no utility to do it.... well, there wasn't yesterday, but I have one today :)  I do think the bottom 2 items have a place in BV2, so who knows.

I also wrote the code to determine the rules level, tech rating, all 3 availabilities, the earliest possible year a unit can be created, the latest possible year a unit can be created (before being extinct), the earliest year the unit can be created with recovered technology, and the year the unit goes extinct.  That ended up throwing quite a wrench into TRO3063, but it'll get fixed quick.  Basically, lots of equipment in the TRO was actually created a year or two AFTER the unit was.  Oopsie!  Glad I caught that!  I can't wait to run this code against all 5200 or so units in my database, see how many need an MUL update :)

Thoughts of the day:
I think engines should burn fuel based on their rating, not their weight.  For example, an XL engine weighs 50% as much as a regular fusion engine.  For a fighter this unit would use double the fuel in any maneuvers.  For non-fuel using units, they'd have half the time between required maintenance. XXL engines would be 3x, light 1.5x, and so forth.

Along the same lines, I think things like MASC or Superchargers should also increase maintenance considerably.

I'm still thinking of knocking out a top down, real time, multiplayer, battletech game in the near future.  Think megamek but without turns.  It'll be a 100% conversion, and probably have vehicles or fighters first.  I'll use megamek unit graphics, turns will be 10 seconds of real time, weapons will fire every 10 seconds, damage is the same, etc.  I have some ideas that may allow a *lot* of people in a game, more than 64, and the maps will always probably be effectively unlimited in size.  Anyway, still thinking about it, I'd need people to show major interest I think before pursuing it, but it is within my skill set.

My new job sucks up a lot more of my time :(

The Texas unemployment system is completely stupid, I gotta find a lawyer tomorrow :(

Over 11,000 hits already, that is like 75 unique visits per day.  Not sure how many humans that is, hopefully a lot that apparently don't comment very often, google analytics isn't a lot of help.

Stay tuned.


  1. Hey Bad_Syntax, do your date calculations distinguish between prototype dates and mass manufacture dates? Granted, Steve may have tinkered with things a fair amount since I saw them, but way back when I discussed this with him, my understanding was that such anachronisms were intentional and did not represent the final mass manufacture version of the equipment.

    I sometimes wish that aerospace fighters got something like 4000/(ASF tonnage) thrust points per ton of fuel. But I thought that only combat vehicles and support vehicles (ie, ground units with ICE/fuel cell engines?) based fuel use on their engine's weight. I don't think ICE or fuel cells are eligible for XL or XXL versions. Does that fuel rule apply to aerospace and conventional fighters outside of combat too?

    I imagine MASC and Superchargers would add a small amount to maintenance normally and then add a premium when actually activated. That sound right? that I think about it, do the aerospace BV calculations use the same weapon BV that ground units use? Because standard aerospace rules calculate range differently and that could have quite a large effect on weapon BV.

    No worries about time - I'm impressed you do as much as you do. And good luck with tomorrow.

    1. Yeah, my calculations look at all that. Thing is, if you have prototype weapons, chances are that unit has never seen combat. If its experimental, chances are its not even deployed to a full company, and still may not have seen combat. TRO3063 stuff has mostly seen combat, or is very rarely, if ever, mentioned as prototype equipment. IMO those years of introduction shouldn't be violated except special one-off situations. Granted, this is the whole "do what you want for your game" argument. I personally just don't like the contradictions destroying the integrity of the data.

      Actually, a 100 ton fighter getting the same thrust from 1 ton of fuel as a 20 ton fighter is completely insane, even for BT physics. However, it goes back to Aerotech, and it makes sense for game design. I may implement a better system if I ever do a fighter game.

      MASC/Superchargers would increase maintenance when used a lot, probably not a whole lot if not used, but I'm no engine guy, perhaps somebody who knows more about superchargers in cars could answer that.

      The Aero weapon BV is the same, and yeah that is probably problematic. I'm sure the RAC5 gets on average 4 hits, but the BV surely accounts for 1 to 6, but in Aero its always 4... I dunno.

      Thanks for the input

    2. Nemera, Sentinel, Werewolf (PPCs) and the Isometrus (cockpit), right? I don't think the first two deploy as widely as FanPro's "War of 3039" prototypes did, but I understand where you're coming from, and honestly I'd forgotten about the latter two designs. To TR:3063's credit, though, there's one case (3063 Catapult rocket variant) that's actually *more* correct than the dates in TechManual (3064).

      This kind of problem will probably pop up every so often in future releases too (both fan and official). Have you considered having your encyclopedia visibly tag designs as "anachronistic?" (Also, I dunno how much this matters, but your stats for the Sentinel-6K has a left hand whereas its art does not.)

      You're welcome for the input. And man, I've got to say, browsing your TR:3063 listings is the first I'd used your encyclopedia in a while, and I'd forgotten just how nice it is that you've combined the MUL's and Solaris7's functions into a single website.

  2. The HPPC, LPPC, SNPPC, and Stealth Armor are big culprits. There was 34 designs (many variants of 1 base design) out of 240 that had an issue, some were easily fixable by adding a year, others not so much. I was going to get to it tonight, but real life sucks, I gotta get up early to do my CHL class, and I just don't have time tonight. I should be able to tomorrow.

    Yes, I will have the ability (actually I guess I do now) to go through every one of the 5200+ canon designs, of all types, and flag the ones that don't quite fit.

    The TRO3063 stuff isn't really official yet, I haven't announced it as its not done and in constant change, but unfortunately I only have 1 working database ATM to work on, so I had to copy them in there.

    I've combined more than just Solaris 7 and MUL. I have fluff for many units (eventually all), can create a record sheet of any type on demand, and will even give the ability to track damage to "your" units in the very near future (by end of year at the *latest*). Plus, my record sheets will have things like tech rating, actual and correct costs/bvs, years available/extinct, and eventually I'll apply production numbers (like 1 to 10, logarithmic) and be able to create a random unit list, for any faction or front, for any specific year, from 2200 to 3100, all in milliseconds.

    Oh, I have a random unit generator that I can plug into this, and in a millisecond give you a fully equipped galaxy. I may even eventually try my hand at a random unit generator, where you can randomly generate a mech, warship, or whatever.

    Oh, and currently the record sheets on here have some bugs (like the ... for continued items). I have currently fixed all those (and now have the brackets), added combat vehicle/fighter sheets, and done lots of additional changes, plus the output is PDFs instead of PNGs... I haven't updated the site yet though :(

    And there are many units with "issues" of various types, that is what the "data issues" dropdown is for on the search page. At the very bottom of the page it specifies issues I had when inputting the designs. There will be a lot more once I get all my validation working to ensure all the designs are legal.

    Too bad TPTB banned me, I'm about to have all the tools they need to more quickly generate TROs, Record Sheets (especially warships!), create RATs, and even flesh out the entire SLDF, down to the man if so desired. Guess they could still use stuff here though, not like I would ever ban them ;)

  3. Heavy Metal updated 'mechs and combat vehicles to TM BV, but never updated the other units (aero, battle armor, etc).

  4. Ahhh, that would indeed explain it. Still though, some of the things removed from the TM over the old HMP way, like bomb capacity adding to OBV, *seem* to be needed to calculate a BV. I'll stick with the canon TM rules though, and once I finish my next couple projects I'll start finishing up my database and not only provide a list of all units, tech ratings, BV, cost, rule levels, availabilities, various years, etc, but also provide a link to the detailed text output for each of those units so if something seems wacky people can take a look, and hopefully find any bugs I had so I can fix em.