Galactic Navy OXP - Mission Ideas Needed

Discussion and information relevant to creating special missions, new ships, skins etc.

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matt634
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Galactic Navy OXP - Mission Ideas Needed

Post by matt634 »

Hello All,

I've finished my Galactic Navy OXP. It's a flavor OXP adding a more visible navy presence to the Ooniverse than has previously existed. Each galaxy now contains 14 individual Sector Commands with base systems and stations. There are several new navy ships and navy patrols including carrier groups, frigate patrols, and convoys.

I'm not able, however, to add any pages to the Wiki. I don't have an account, and when I click on "login/create account" I only get the login option. What am I doing wrong?

Some Pics:

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Last edited by matt634 on Sun Apr 27, 2008 8:12 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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Post by jonnycuba »

nice work, looking forward to seeing in action... 8)
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Post by Captain Hesperus »

Verrrry nice......

Suddenly, my life as a smugglertrader in exotic goods looks to be at risk.

As for the Wiki, you should try PMing Winston, since he officiates over and annoints the worthy unto the Sacred Wiki.

Meanwhile, if you upload to an online file storage site, such as Box.net then we can access this fab looking OXP while you wait to be added to the multitude of Wiki-ists.

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Post by Commander McLane »

Hi, matt 634!

Looks quite nice! :D

I'd like to know, however, where these new Sector Commands are located. Or, to be more precise: Have you made sure that your OXP doesn't interfere with any existing OXPs? This could be an issue for instance in Galaxy 7, where Assassins.oxp changes the appearance of quite a number of systems. And the existence of a Sector Command in a system that has heavy action in Assassins.oxp going on could contradict the Assassins-story. The same goes for other parts of the eight galaxies where there is a lot of OXP-action. You should try to avoid this, and I hope you have.

On the other hand I'm looking forward to incorporating your work into ghosts_from_the_past.oxp, where I was setting up something like a local GalCop-command (although I was doing it in interstellar space). Anyway I think your navy ships are quite right for an epic fight against a Generation Ship. :)

As far as uploading to the wiki is concerned: Hesperus is right, you have to PM Winston. Disabling the sign-up option is one of the measures he took in the fight against spammers. But if you PM him, he'll do it quickly.

It might be, though, that you need to upload it to box.net or another free hosting service anyway, because the upload size to the wiki is limited to 2MB only. If it contains a couple of textures your OXP may well be longer.

Anyway, whether the wiki can host your OXP or not, I would urge you to upload informations about your OXP to the wiki. At least about the new ships and the background story. If you don't feel like being a great writer, there are for sure some people here who would love to help out. Ask e.g. Hesperus, who has already done quite some work on the background story in the wiki.

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Post by nijineko »

awesome pics, which reminds me, i need to get my generation ship shots up.... in any case, i am also reminded that i have a rather large web account that is sitting there for the most part. i have some decent bandwidth per month, so perhaps i could host a few of the larger oxp's that don't fit on the wiki, as a service to those who don't have their own way of hosting it. i can't have too many, or my account will get deleted as a "file hosting account". i may have to bury the actual file links 4-5 pages deep to prevent the auto-scripts from flagging me. =D

just a friendly offer. =D
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Post by matt634 »

Hello again,

Thank you everyone for all the help and praise. I got my wiki account today from Winston, so the OXP should be up shortly! It came out to be 1.9MB (destiny).

Commander McLane, I ran a check for conflicts between Assassins and the Galaxy 7 Sector Commands and found one overlapping system which I quickly fixed :). I also cross-checked the native missions and found a couple overlaps in the constrictor mission (specifically Xeer) and thargoid plans, but there are no conflicts. In fact, I think it adds to the experience.

I didn't check compatibility with any other oxps, but if people discover conflicts they can always be corrected later. At this time there are no missions, so the only problems I can predict would be the altered planet descriptions.

I have a fun little mission planned out for Galaxy 6 (in that string of systems that's only accessible from Rabi), but won't get a chance to script it until after finals. I should actually be studying civil procedure right now :( .

Please, let me know of any bugs you find, and I'm happy to answer any questions. For instance: Why did you remove the turrets from your military stations? Because, the stations inevitably ended up exchanging fire with the orbiting navy ships during any battle.

Thanks again!
Last edited by matt634 on Sun Nov 25, 2007 12:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by matt634 »

Alright,

The OXP is up on the wiki. I couldn't figure out how to place it in the table, but if you continue to scroll down, you'll find it under the Ships and Ship Variants heading, listed as "Galactic Navy".

I'll have to create the individual wiki info pages for Carrier Groups, SecComs, and new ships after finals. For now some info is included as text documents when you download the OXP.

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Post by Captain Hesperus »

matt634 wrote:Alright,

The OXP is up on the wiki. I couldn't figure out how to place it in the table,
Done :D

Regarding an info page for your new Galactic Navy additions, there is the Galactic Navy page, so maybe linking this to your pages may be a starter.

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Post by matt634 »

Thanks Hesperus

I actually got the idea for this OXP by reading the galactic navy page from the wiki. I curse the man who decided the galaxy should be divided into 14 sectors. It couldn't be 4 sectors or even 10. It had to be 14! On the bright side, I think I set a new Oorecord for longest planetinfo.plist (122 new entries)!

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Post by Commander McLane »

matt634 wrote:I curse the man who decided the galaxy should be divided into 14 sectors. It couldn't be 4 sectors or even 10. It had to be 14!
Hmmm. Actually the 14 is only given as an example for Galaxy 1. So there could be fewer (or of course more) sectors in the other galaxies.
Why did you remove the turrets from your military stations? Because, the stations inevitably ended up exchanging fire with the orbiting navy ships during any battle.
Again hmmm. This sounds like an AI-problem. Currently Eric Walch is the one most deeply into all the AI-stuff. You should ask him to take a look into it and find out why the stations turn hostile towards their own ships. And probably he has a fix for that.

Anyway. I've downloaded it and will try it out! Thanks for your work! :D

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Post by Eric Walch »

Again hmmm. This sounds like an AI-problem. Currently Eric Walch is the one most deeply into all the AI-stuff. You should ask him to take a look into it and find out why the stations turn hostile towards their own ships. And probably he has a fix for that.
Hmm. I've been thinking at this item in the past . Currently the system sets the turrets up with a turret-behavior and a nullAi.plist. It should be possible to give it an other AI that sets the turrets Idle with a performIdle command. When you need the turrets again you must be able to activate them with initialiseTurret. I have never tested it, but think it will work for switching it on/off. (Let us know if it really works).

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Post by matt634 »

There's really no AI problem with the turrets. The problem arises when an enemy craft :twisted: starts maneuvering between the very large station and the very large Navy ships. With all that plasma flying around there is inevitably some friendly fire which leads to the ships attacking the station and the station attacking the ships until one or the other is destroyed! It's actually pretty cool to watch, and more often than not the Navy ships are able to blow up the station. Unfortunately, this is not very practical so I just removed the turrets from the station.

I'm already working on a small update to the script concerning Navy ships in witchspace. It should be up later today.

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Post by TGHC »

First of all well done, pretty impressive for a first OXP, look forward to having a crack at it.
matt634 wrote:There's really no AI problem with the turrets. The problem arises when an enemy craft :twisted: starts maneuvering between the very large station and the very large Navy ships. With all that plasma flying around there is inevitably some friendly fire which leads to the ships attacking the station and the station attacking the ships until one or the other is destroyed! It's actually pretty cool to watch, and more often than not the Navy ships are able to blow up the station. Unfortunately, this is not very practical so I just removed the turrets from the station.
In which case if it doesn't mess up the mission itself, leave it in there, it will add to the atmosphere.
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Post by matt634 »

Version 1.2 Now Up on the Wiki.

- Corrected Script to keep Navy Patrols and Convoys from appearing in Interstellar Space
- Added Script action to place Navy Frigates in Interstellar Space
- Script adds 2 extra Thargoids for every 1 Frigate in Interstellar Space
- Updated Frigate AI for Interstellar operation
- SecCom Stations now rotate

Interestingly, I originally had the stations rotating using the rotatingstation role. But, including this role wouldn't allow the station to have a specific commodity list and was launching random traders so I removed it. I figured the rotating /true command would yield the same result, but I was pleasantly surprised that it just made the station rotate without any icky side effects. Such is the mystery of Oolite roles.

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Post by Commander McLane »

[loooong post again; sorry for all]
matt634 wrote:I'm already working on a small update to the script concerning Navy ships in witchspace.
This brings me to a point I wanted to raise anyway. It concernes the whole background story of the game, and summarizes in a question:

Are you sure you want to have the SecComs within systems, orbiting planets; or don't they belong in interstellar space (or "witchspace", if you want, although technically "witchspace" is only the tunnel between different locations of space) anyway?

Let me explain: We know that GalCop in fact isn't that strong a structure. It deals with
  1. setting up, running and maintaining trading stations in all member-systems;
  2. issueing pilot licences on the academy in Lave;
  3. keeping the space-lanes safe for traders. This last point can be sub-divided in
    1. keeping piracy under control (mainly in planetary space, and again mainly on the major space-lines ("corridors")); and
    2. fighting against the Thargoids (mainly in interstellar space, and mainly in the main combat zones).
Notably it does not interfere with the internal issues of the member-worlds. (Although there might be some very rare exceptions to that. I can imagine a larger-scale conflict involving a couple of planets, where GalCop could become drawn in, because the safety of the space-lines would be threatened. For the same reason I can also imagine the occasional GalCop police/military campaign in a notoriously unsafe Anarchy system.) So the responsibilities of the GalCop are quite limited.

Second we know that, according to the timeline (Selezen has done some excellent work on that), only a couple of decades after the time of Oolite, GalCop collapses. It simply seizes to exist and vanishes without a trace. IMO this very strongly suggests that GalCop is not as strong as one might think.

So how does the massive military presence of GalCop in your OXP fit into this framework?

The wiki tells us about the Galactic Navy:
EliteWiki wrote:Organisation

Absolute command over the Galactic Navy is the responsibility of the office of the GalCop president. The president has one Naval attache, called the Navy Commander-in-Chief, who is usually a serving Admiral or Commodore.
Other than this, the Galactic Navy has no centralised command structure, as this would not be beneficial in the sort of war being fought. Instead, overall control of the Navy resides with regional commanders, called Sector Commanders (SecComs). These SecComs are always on the front lines of battle, situated on Mobile Command Ships. These are often either Anacondas or Behemoths, depending on the classification of the combat zone. Galaxy 1 contains 14 sectors.
The two important points are:
  1. SecComs are always on the front lines of battle;
  2. SecComs are situated on Mobile Command Ships (often either Anacondas or Behemoths).
These points have a couple of consequences, at least in my understanding.
  1. The sectors do not imply an equal (or roughly equal) division of the eight galaxies. They depend entirely on where the battle with the Thargoids is hottest. So five planets very close to the Thargoid front-line could constitute five sectors, because the Galactic Navy would have to be concentrated there. On the other hand many planets in the back-zones of the galaxies would not need to be visibly attached to any sector at all.
  2. There are in fact areas within the eight maps which are classified (by GalCop) as combat zones (or battle zones). Now this brings a problem for us, because this is nowhere reflected in Oolite. A player will encounter Thargoid attacks spread fairly evenly across the galaxies (it's just random, in game-terms). There are no visible combat zones, where we find an extraordinary amount of fighting steadily going on. Especially there are no planets or systems visibly classified as "War Zone. Enter on your own risk!"
  3. My own personal explanation for this lack of visible warfare against the Thargoids has always been that the bulk of fighting takes place not in planetary space, but in interstellar space. So the war zones are there, but they don't include planets. They are in the blank space on the map, wrapped around the planets, if I may say so. As long as you just jump from system to system, you're relatively safe everywhere, you don't in fact touch the combat zones, and probably won't notice what's really going on around you. You only get an idea of the hot war, if you're unlucky (or courageous (or stupid; whatever applies to you)) enough to misjump. This is especially true when you have Behemoth.oxp installed. (The same problem occurs here, of course: the appearance of Thargoids and Behemoths and the fighting is random, not attached to zones. But as a player presumably won't misjump too often, this doesn't matter much: If he misjumps, this of course always happens in a combat zone, according to Murphy's Law.
  4. As a result of this nature of the combat zones I would expect the SecComs to be located in interstellar space as well, not in planetary space, where there is not much of a war. So the Galactic Navy, while on the one hand being quite active in war, is on the other hand not too visible for civilians, or harmless traders who never have the misfortune to misjump.
  5. This fits well with the second point from the above list: SecComs are on ships, not on stations. Anacondas or Behemoths, mobile, ready to shift to another region of space, should the combat zone itself shift (and I would expect it to shift over time).
So, if I may, and with all due respect for all the work you have put into your OXP, I would like to make some suggestions:
  1. Yes, go for expanding into interstellar space. My suggestion is to move the SecComs completely into interstellar space, out of the orbits of planets.
  2. This one comes automatically with the first: Replace the SecCom stations with ships, Military Anacondas (should be iron-ass, of course) or Behemoths.
  3. Let a lot of action go on around the SecComs. Fill the space around them with a raging battle between Navy and Thargoids. The SecCom-ships themselves would probably be at a little distance, but Navy Fleets like you have designed them should engage lots of Thargoids.
  4. Have some visible action going on in the systems surrounding the SecCom, notably the two adjacent systems to its interstellar location. A fleet coming out of or jumping into witchspace. There have to be supplies and reinforcements brought to the SecCom and into the battle.
  5. The SecComs don't need to be evenly distributed throughout the galaxies. It is far more likely that they are concentrated in some areas that would be the war zones. Nor do they need to be 14 in each and every galaxy (although there should be 14 in Galaxy 1, according to the wiki).
As always, these are my views, and they are open for discussion (I do hope there will be a lot of discussion!). The issue of the Thargoid War, and how it can be adequately reflected in the Ooniverse, has been on my thinking for quite a while, although on a fairly low level. And I think, others have reflected on it as well.

Your OXP is definitively a way to resolve this issue. You're up to something, here! I also feel it can be improved, especially by bringing it more in-line with the known background story. Therefore my suggestions. You're welcome to comment on them, according to your view of the whole story. And everybody else is invited to comment and share more views and insights, too, of course!

[/retreats from another loooong post]

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