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Author Topic: Interplanetary Arms Race  (Read 1374 times)

Madman198237

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Re: Interplanetary Arms Race
« Reply #30 on: September 14, 2019, 12:51:11 pm »

Ahahahahahahaha IT'S AN UPDATE. AN UPDATE.

So yeah, Side 1 decided to be a machine race called 'The Network'. Side 2 is the Planetary Technate, who have 'The Network' as a thing that their society is built on---control of the network is effectively 'the government'.

Now, for the contest. I'm going to go ahead and just post the turn now and I'll puzzle out the contest shortly.
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Madman198237

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Re: Interplanetary Arms Race
« Reply #31 on: September 22, 2019, 10:38:40 pm »

First up: The Network (side one) needs more players, DESPERATELY.


Second: I've been swamped yet again with assignments, I will decide that contest as soon as I have some free time. So expect contest results no later than January, and no sooner than Tuesday.
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Failbird105

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Re: Interplanetary Arms Race
« Reply #32 on: September 23, 2019, 04:42:38 am »

Eh, I was going to wait for the sides to become more developed, but I guess I'll go Network.
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Madman198237

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Re: Interplanetary Arms Race
« Reply #33 on: September 29, 2019, 05:23:00 pm »

Oh would you look at that an update. Also, the Planetary Technate won the contest and now gets an extra Research Credit, on account of having more than one author for its lore, and also having a really interesting premise.

I must say that Man of Paper gets an honorable mention, for being the writer of the majority of proposed backgrounds AND the writer of the most lore for the winning choice (Namely, all of it) for his side. And also for writing more than half the proposals for that time, and starting a vast majority of the voteboxes.

If I ever run another Arms Race, I'll be *forcing* the active AR players to divide themselves up amongst the teams :P


Let's try to get this moving faster, please? (Looking at you, Network)
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Madman198237

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Re: Interplanetary Arms Race
« Reply #34 on: January 01, 2020, 12:34:37 am »

Well, look, a New Year's present from one very mad man.

Turn Two Combat Phase

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In Orbit Over Planet D
Three ships coast towards each other over this watery world. One of them is recognizable as an ITC, the other two are as-yet indistinguishable, being much smaller than the monstrous ships that move soldiers from planet to planet.

The Planetary Technate's Chord and the Network's Logos vessels distinguish each other, the Chord being seen somewhat first as it's larger than the Logos by a substantial amount. Their sensors, however, are equivalent, and give no advantages. On approach to the planet, the Chord alters its trajectory to protect its ITC companion, while the Logos is presently content to maintain its distance. Strangely, while the telltale signatures of ionized material can be detected back along the course of Network vessels, no such exhaust material is detected along the Chord's course, despite there being clear evidence of maneuvers as its course is altered. The approach patterns show Chords to be less maneuverable than the Logos.

As the ships enter orbit, however, the Logos begins to approach; the Chord, wishing to defend its ITC, moves towards its attacker. It maintains a mostly unaltered course, waiting til it enters its own weapons range before beginning the evasive maneuvers necessary to make targeting more difficult. Sensor scans have shown that the Logos is faster than the Chord, and the captain of the larger vessel feels he must press the attack before the smaller vessel can outmaneuver him and pursue his ITC, just getting close enough to the planet to begin deploying troops.

On final approach, the Chord is closing in on its own weapons range when a sudden glancing hit shakes the entire vessel, with external cameras showing a brand-new scar on the side of the ship. A mass driver round from the rapidly approaching Logos has carved a twenty-centimeter-deep furrow in the armor plating, and wasn't even stopped by the impact. The Chord's captain orders emergency maneuvers, sensors being unable to detect the fast-moving and small projectiles. As the maneuvers begin, a catastrophic hit pierces several compartments before the armor-piercing round shatters, spraying fragments into one of the Oculus laser's support machinery. The Chord's lacking ability to maneuver quickly in all three directions allowed the Logos' captain to place multiple mass driver rounds very close to the ship, despite the slow apparent fire rate of the Logos' weaponry.

The range comes inexorably down, however, and the Chord enters weapons range, firing an immediate burst of three laser beams, which quickly dies down to 2 as the damaged Oculus fails. Lasers trace across the Logos, and the ship is breached in multiple compartments. Sensors briefly detect the leaks as the range comes down, though strangely the leaks seem to close themselves faster than a regular damage crew should have been able to patch them. The damage is not superficial, some of the Logos' maneuvering thrusters are down and a gun turret is reporting damage. The aggressive first-contact policy has harmed both combatant. Further projectiles and lasers crisscross the engagement zone as the Logos and Chord make their closest approach. Further strikes do severe damage to both ships, but the Chord's mass allows it to soak up the damage with fewer problems. As the vacuum of space seeps into several compartments aboard the Logos, the various combat units working the ship begin to lock up as systems designed to work in a warm (relatively, anyway) atmosphere freeze up, while the Chord is having trouble maneuvering to pursue the fleeing Logos, which is itself not moving at top speed.

Its mission complete, the Logos successfully withdraws to a high orbit above the planet, and the Chord is content to remain in a lower orbit, the Chord Badly Damaged, the Logos Damaged, and both licking their wounds as the Technate ITC deploys its troops to the surface.

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In Orbit Over Planet F
One ITC and one Logos speed towards the planet from their interplanetary trajectory, and immediately notice that today is not going to be their day. No fewer than five enemy ships are approaching the same planet, only one of which is the ugly form of an ITC. It is too late to not reach the planet, and all the ITC and Logos can do is alter their course to remain high above the planet as they try to flee back into interplanetary space.

Things continue to not go the way of the Network, however, as the enemy combat vessels alter their course to meet the Network units, and they are going to be capable of doing so before the Network craft can escape the planet's gravity. The Logos remains with the ITC, protecting it as three Chords match orbits and close with the slow ITC, having used a slingshot around the planet and burning some extra fuel to catch the two fleeing vessels.

As before, the first shot goes to the Logos. Eager to catch the enemy and overconfident in their numbers advantage, the three Chords pour everything into catching the two enemies and getting the maximum possible time to shoot them before being forced to withdraw back to the planet before they burn too much of their fuel. For one of the Chords, this mistake is its last of the fight, as three mass driver rounds strike the ship at various points. With one reactor and thruster assembly having been destroyed and two lasers reporting crippling faults as well as many compartments rapidly venting atmosphere, the ship is forced to withdraw and limp back towards the planet, nearly destroyed. Only the overly large size, decent armor, and what would be recognized as slightly lower-than-normal velocity for the three simultaneous rounds spare the ship from total destruction. As it is, the ship has been totally Crippled, and would do well to not reenter combat until it is repaired.

The ships continue to close as the Logos and ITC struggle to get away. Warned by the fate of the first Chord, the rest begin flying erratically, slowing down their pursuit and hastening the exhaustion of their fuel reserves. Eventually, the numbers resolve themselves: Five minutes. The Chords will be in range for just five minutes, though the Network's processors are as-yet unaware of the ranges of enemy weapons. Rail gun rounds continue to rain seemingly indiscriminately across the Chords, though their captains are, usually, mercifully unaware. Some glancing hits and minor strikes deal mostly inconsequential damage, before the Chords reach range. The first few shots are aimed at the ITC, but the aim is not superb and the shots scuff some paint and add a few new vents to a couple of little-used engineering compartments. The Logos, however, turns and performs a deceleration burn, getting closer to the pursuers and aggressively maneuvering to force the leading Chord to abandon its course with radical alterations to prevent the Logos from getting close enough to get easy shots with its railguns, the destructive power of which is rapidly becoming better appreciated across the Technate. But by getting closer, the Logos makes itself an easier target, and lasers rake the surface. The Logos is quite obviously not as well protected as the bulky Chord, and it begins losing maneuvering and starts leaking fuel rapidly. The leading Chord, however, is suffering badly from repeated hits, unable to both dodge effectively and maintain contact with the Logos and ITC. Its limited efforts to evade fire, however, prevent damage similar to what took out the first Chord. It is scarred and battered, but will survive this fight merely Damaged.

The ITC gets out of range as the Logos struggles to catch back up, flame streaming from the places where air leaks and superheated metal mix, and an uncontrolled roll as the maneuvering system has been crippled by the wash of laser fire. It will not rejoin the ITC, however. The inaccurate laser fire of the Chords has been so plentiful that the skin and structure of the vessel are nearly molten, and with one last aggressive maneuver to throw off the enemy's aim, the ship just slowly tears in half, and the remaining atmosphere vents. The fires stop, the glow fades, and all that's left is a cloud of gas and the spherical beads of formerly-molten metal. The ship suffered an impressive amount of damage despite its light construction. Its course upon its death was such that the Chords do not get much time to study it at medium range before their orbital paths separate them, the Chords returning to the ITCs to refuel and take picket stations around the planet, the drifting wreck of the savaged Logos headed out into space.

Troops drop towards the surface of Planet F from the orbiting Technate ITCs, uncontested as their enemy retreats.

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Spoiler: Map (click to show/hide)

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Well, that got long. I think I covered all the combat both sides saw; I'll address individual thread things tomo---wait, no, tomorrow has become today. *Later today*, I'll address individual team thread things. Individual thread things include the lists of what each side knows about the other, though I'll move those to the core thread later.

Critiques welcome and necessary. Was this detailed enough, or not? What details was I missing? What details did I overdo? Do you like the writing style? I'll get a better explanation of the space combat stages tomorrow. We only ever cared about the first stage, "approach to the planet", in this update.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2020, 11:24:12 am by Madman198237 »
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Madman198237

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Re: Interplanetary Arms Race
« Reply #35 on: January 24, 2020, 11:56:10 pm »

Designs are out, try and settle revisions fast so I can make them happen.
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Madman198237

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Re: Interplanetary Arms Race
« Reply #36 on: February 16, 2020, 09:15:21 pm »

Turn Three Combat Phase

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In Orbit Over Planet D
The Technate ships withdraw from the fight, heading away from the planet at cruising speed, noting that so far as they can tell, the Network ship has stayed in place. Some time later, two Network ships arrive, one of which is an ITC, which begins to deploy troops to the planet's surface.

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The Surface of Planet D
Technate forces advance further, and had secured just over half the planet, when shuttles began to descend from the Network ITC that had arrived midway through the season. These new forces were startling, robotic soldiers equipped with lightly armored environment suits and man robot-portable railguns firing high caliber rounds at very high velocities, being moved around the battlefield by the shuttles from their orbiting ITC.

The Technate's soldiers are not in the worst possible position, though, as they all wear a much superior armored suit than what the Network uses, carry a 20mm rocket launcher that is trying really hard to be an infantryman's service rifle and fires guided projectiles, and a possess machine pistol, which generally covers the poor performance of their rifle/grenade launcher/rocket launcher confused combo weapon at close ranges.

The Network forces focused on establishing a beachhead at first, which is fairly doable since they outnumber the Technate two to one and can outmaneuver them as well. The first few skirmishes are relatively inconclusive, though many result in decisively lopsided victories for the Network. Being vastly more mobile on the strategic scale and with so much of the planet under nobody's control, Network forces only ever attack when they can leverage their numerical superiority. Fighting from ambush also allows Network soldiers to stay at Long and Medium ranges, where their railguns are most effective. The Technate forces close engagements, where the plastic machine pistols they have are more than capable of shredding Network troops, even if their main weapons are too low-velocity at short range to actually kill Network robots. Regardless of range, getting hit with a railgun dialed up to full power is functionally equivalent to being shot by a low-caliber cannon round, and leaves very little of the unfortunate Technate soldier to bury.

Which is good, thought Decarch Nysk Titania (don't blame me for the names), because the battle was, once again, not going so very well, and there were going to be a lot of bodies left lying around. The ambush had been well placed, and railgun rounds had started to make their characteristic sonic booms heard throughout the unit, and soldiers had already started to die. They were already organizing themselves for the counterattack, with some squads attempting to suppress the enemy with accurate laser-guided long range fire, while more fireteams advanced through a hail of increasingly accurate and deadly railgun fire until they reached a range at which their machine pistols became effective and the enemy's railguns steadily less so, with their slow rate of fire.

Decarch Titania was, unluckily, the leader of one of the fireteams assigned to charge the enemy and leverage their disadvantage at close range. They had been caught in the middle of a deep valley, trying to stay low enough to avoid easy detection from the orbiting spacecraft or occasional overhead shuttle pass. Apparently it hadn't worked, because there were Network forces along the ridge on the east side of the valley. Running from cover to cover, Titania and her squad gained ground rapidly, but they were entering the most deadly ranges where the Network's weaponry held all the advantages. Hopefully there wasn't another force on the western side, or they were definitely going to die, still climbing out of the valley.

D-34n, Basic Infantry Unit, Rifleman, was also not having such a good day. Sure, reports over short-range radio suggested that the battle was going well over on the other side of the ridge, but the enemy was also beginning to close the distance on the initial ambush force. The shuttle had landed two groups some miles away from the long valley on either side, so that the shuttle's arrival and departure would be harder to note and that it would, hopefully, be impossible for the enemies to realize they were being stalked. However, in the attempt to remain concealed from their targets, the western Network forces had ended up approaching through a patch of very dense forest, which, to their immense, collective, robotic displeasure, had concealed a very muddy swamp. The resulting slowdown meant that the second pincer was still some minutes away from the ambush, which suggested that they were not going to be capable of providing the intended support, which should have quickly eliminated the entire Technate force.

The Technate forces reached the Network's ambush positions, and began to fight back, forcing them towards more densely forested terrain. The remainder of the Technate forces had reached the top of the ridge and begun adding their fire to the advance elements' own continued assault when D-34n and the rest of the group finally arrived, to find the battle effectively lost. A scattering of long-range rifle fire later and the first Network pincer had broken contact and withdrawn, with the second pincer likewise moving away from the battlefield towards their shuttle pickup location. The Technate forces licked their wounds and retreated back to base.

The battle is bloody and hard fought, but in the end sees the Technate advancing to 6/10 control before the Network units arrive, with the Network subsequently securing 3/10 control of the planet, largely due to the completely uncontested nature of the orbital theater and their numerical advantage. Both sides suffer casualties, but the Technate is suffering far, far worse.

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In Orbit Over Planet F
The Network's ITC flees through deep space, away from F as fast as it can, which is not very fast. This allow it to see, just barely, the signs of one or more warships leaving the planet's orbit, though at a great enough distance it cannot tell whether there are two ships remaining or two ships leaving, just that the enemy's warships have split into two groups. The Technate ITC likewise is seen to withdraw in concert with the other warship(s) that are leaving, adding to the difficulty of resolving what is happening.

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Spoiler: Map (click to show/hide)

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Alrighty, from now on there should be, generally, less to describe in any individual combat as hopefully that rather disjointed and lengthy combat described each sides advantages and disadvantages reasonably clearly.

IN ADDITION: There are now TWO actions per phase (except strategy, of course). Two designs, two revisions.
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