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Visual Shipping and Navigation Lights

Discussion in 'Bugs, In-Game Issues and other Feedback' started by Mercurio, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. Mercurio

    Mercurio Member

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    I noticed the mention of the "frigates" in geosynchronous orbit above the firebase academies (Arkadia Story Line v5.3, p.78) which makes no sense for the super-ships you currently have in those locations. Both the Bismark (241m in length) and the Missouri (270m in length) are capital ships in their own right. Your ships, however, measure 519m in length. Their displacements (i.e. volumes) are simply far too large to qualify for frigate, destroyer or even a cruiser class ship. I would have thought that the term "battleship" would be more than apt for these. Frigates, on the other hand, are only a step up from a corvette and have a displacement or volume similar to the dropship at Celeste Outpost.

    Another item which really stands out is the use of the term "scuttled" (Arkadia Story Line v5.3, p.52, paragraph 4). Scuttling is, exclusively, a deliberate act undertaken to sink ones own ship - usually by opening the seacocks. One can sink someone-else's ship but one can't make a verifiable claim to have scuttled someone-else's ship without being able to produce a written authority from the captain on duty at the time the vessel sank. I imagine the scuttling of a space ship could be achieved safely by firing up the engines, pointing her at a nearby star or black hole and, preferably, disembarking before she's too deep down the gravity well. I don't think this is what you were trying to describe. The word I think you're looking for is more than likely "crippled".

    Getting back to those battleships in geosynchronous orbit above the firebase academies:
    IWantThisShip_8-bit.png

    I want this ship!...and not just the little corvette-class Quad parked on the deck. :^)

    On a more practical note, the placement of lights could use some work. The red lights below the superstructure are off - which is the correct state for the port and starboard lights of a vessel at anchor or, otherwise, not under way. Moreover, this is not where the port and starboard navigation lights go on a ship. The red lights on the raised block at the forward end of the ship are closer to the mark, but they look like they're on - not correct for a ship not under way. Moreover, the starboard navigation lights (on the right when facing forward) are supposed to be green, not red. Under way, or not, a white light is supposed to be aft and, on large ships, atop the mast above the superstructure.

    If you ever do get one of these into space, realism can be enhanced by setting two red mast lights, one vertically above the other, which turn on whenever the ship is under way and the pilot either leaves her/his seat or, otherwise, goes AFK - and off whenever the pilot regains control of the ship. Given that power markers and windows are already set to light blue, you'll need an amber or yellow light (clearly distinguishable from white and red) to mark the lower surface of the ship, given the necessity of an third navigation light in a 3d setting such as space.

    A good place to start for lights configuration is: http://www.grenadabluewatersailing.com/key-navigation-lights-shapes/

    I recommend perusing The International Regulations for the Avoidance of Collisions at Sea as it's both brief and to the point. I also think it's quite light reading too. I'd cite it properly, but my copy's still packed in a box somewhere. The reason for my recommendation is that the same conventions will almost certainly be built upon in space; at least, once we figure out how to make space our latest "frontier".

    Anyway, I hope you find some useful ideas in this...
     
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    Last edited: Oct 2, 2015
  2. KikkiJikki

    KikkiJikki Well-Known Member Pro Users

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    Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space.

    So the size threshold for space ship types might be higher than the ones used for ocean going vessels.
     
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  3. Mercurio

    Mercurio Member

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    Hi KikkiJikki :^)

    That is definitely a possibility as, sometimes, we do actually part from convention.

    I tend to think, however, that what happens when a new 'field' demands a new set of size thresholds is that the existing system, which everyone is familiar with, usually gets extended. In this case, the existing range of vessel sizes would have their purposes and be readily recognizable but larger classes of ship would have to be added. Maybe we'll one day bring back the old "Dreadnaught" term and, perhaps, add mothership, behemoth, battle star, etc. up the scale. By way of example, a similar thing was proposed for the Wentworth (1922) scale, used by geologists, when researchers started spending more time looking at sediments containing much larger clasts than the Wentworth scale accounts for (think "grains" ranging in size from houses to skyskrapers and beyond). I suspect that, if shipping design gets supersized for some reason (e.g. the vastness of space), then changes to the way we describe shipping classes will probably follow the same pattern.

    But one can never be certain of the future...

    :^)
     
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