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James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.10.29 23:30:00 - [1]
 

Local Mk II

Summary:

There is discontent with the current system mechanics as regards local. Specifically, that it's a very powerful intel tool.
This is undesirable, but so too is removing it's functionality entirely.

This document intends to describe a system whereby 'local' is redesigned as a cohesive system scanning mechanism.

Aims:
* To make it possible to sneak up on someone in a system.
* To allow someone going about 'normal business' in a system - such as ratting or mining - to be able to detect incoming hostiles, without resorting to clicking on the 'scanner' button every 5 seconds.

* To revisit in terms of functionality, some currently un/under used modules.
* to provide a system that's flexible and useful to the average player, but provides room for the a skilled pilot to do more with it.

So, in rough summary what we do is adopt a 'submarine' model. Approximately like you would see in a very old computer game, such as was featured in the rather old PC game 'SSN 21 Seawolf'.

Every ship has a sensor suite. This sensor suite can be turned off. If it is switched on, it functions much like probes do currently. A scan is performed at regular intervals. The signature and sensor strengths of the ships involved are compared, and the result is either a 'hit' or a 'miss'. Ship scan range should be constrained, again much like probes are. Perhaps this range limit is dependant on ship class.

However unlike a probe, a hit on your scanner does not produce warpable results. It also doesn't reveal complete information - you need multiple hits in order to 'fully detect' a ship. If you're not getting these hits every scanner cycle, as might be the case on something small, then it will take proportionately longer to get all the information. Much like the probe system, it's fairly easy to hide a single interceptor from being probed, and much harder to hide a whole battleship fleet.

Thus you might get:
'unknown signature'
'gravimetric signature'
'battleship ravimetric signature'
Scorpion class battleship. (Ship name)

Much like you would get on the normal system scanner, but will take at least 4 iterations to 'resolve' what sort of ship it is.

Active scanning is then augmented by an ECCM - which means you're both better at spotting things, and harder to spot yourself.
Ship scanner - progressively reveals more information about the ship:
- Shield/Armour/Hull hitpoints
- Shield/Amour/Hull resistances
- Capacitor status
- current fit.
- Current resistances (and maybe hilighting the lower resists)

Another module may need creation the 'IFF query':
- Alliance
- Corporation
- Pilot

(or perhaps these module properties are actually ship properties - maybe it's just a recon or a covert ops ship that can do that, or maybe a command ship function?)

Once a piece of information has been 'detected' by the scanning system, the intention is that it remains visible for a time. Thus after the first time a ship is 'detected' it becomes 'tracked' - it has an entry in your targeting computer, that is updated as more details are detected. As details are revealed (and since they need successive 'probe results' this may take some time) they're updated on that entry.

The 'track' on a ship persists for an hour following the last 'hit' on it - so if your pirate comes back within that time, you'll know immediately. Each time there is a scanner hit, the position of the target will update, so if it's having a hard time of it, then intelligence may be rather spotty/sporadic.

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.10.29 23:30:00 - [2]
 

Once you've managed to get the information for a ship, the scanner is deemed to have enough knowledge to be able to trace a ship. Functionally speaking, that means the scanner will automatically 'hit' each cycle, giving you near real time information on where it is. It will continue to be traced until it leaves scanner range - the trace will show you what it is, and where it's going as it's maneuvering, and it will also give you some indication of the location of a cloaked ship. (more on this in a bit).

There's a drawback though - by having your sensors turned on, other people can see you - at any range - they'll be able to detect you faster than you detect them - each scanner cycle will count as a 'hit' so it will take them the minimum amount of time to determine your ship and location. IF you both have sensors turned off though, neither will be aware of the other.

To extend this idea further - this information should be shared across a fleet. Thus if you have multiple ships with sensors 'active', ships will be detected and classified faster. It will start being traced and tracked faster too. It's hard to sneak up on 100 battleships that are actively looking for you. However given their scan range is finite, it will be the case that you can remain fully aware of where they are, and they will in return know for certain when you arrive within their scan range.


That's the basics. Now, advanced scanning. We start from a point where everything emits a 'signature'. This signature ... well, lets think of it as an audio signature. There's components to this signature for all the 'bits' that you'd get on the scanner - ship type, pilot name, alliance, corp. This signature can be detected at range, but without intervention, the background 'noise' blots it out. The pilot will therefore focus his sensors towards an arc of sky, and get a signature for what's there - with a very narrow detection arc, the signature might be intelligable.
A wave form, and a fourier transform of the wave is displayed, and gradually the 'noise' is filtered out, until a unique 'bar' pattern is displayed (and at this point can be automatically decoded by the ship).

The range on this is intended to be extremely short - 'by default' we use the system overview range (and use that as the excuse for how we tell what ships are right next to us). At longer ranges, we can focuss a cone, much like the system scanner does currently - the wider the cone, the more 'noise' and thus the harder it is to pick out a specific signature, but it might be enough to sweep asteroid belts from around the planet, and make a guess where someone is. ANd given time, narrow down what they are, and who they are - but in turn, exposing yourself to counter detection, either passively or by their 'active' scanner.

Cloakers: Cloaks serve to massively decrease your sensor profile, and make you effectively unprobable. However given enough time, hits will occur and a cloaker will become 'traced' like any other ship would. Because it's a really low signature, it's expected this'll take 'about' an hour, or more.
If you're not on grid with the cloaker, you just get an idea of where it is - e.g. see a non warpable 'hit' in space. (Maybe this could become warpable with bad accuracy, with a scan probe).
If however, you are on grid with the cloaker, you will get a general indicator of where abouts it is. Not accurate enough that you'll be able to decloak it immediately, but such that you'll be able to get closer. As you get closer, the accuracy improves, until the ship is decloaked. This will take enough time that someone paying attention will notice, but someone who's not will get narrowed down, decloaked and killed


And there you have it. Something that'll hopefully address the needs of both the industrialist who wants to mine in peace - and the roaming PvPer who want's some chance of killing someone who's 'watching local'

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.10.30 09:08:00 - [3]
 

Hmm, TL;DR?

Well, concise form:
Ship scanning and detection turns into something similar to 'real world' radar.

Each ship has one, and can either have it switched on, or off. If it's on, it detects stuff - faster if it's big, slower if it's small. But in turn, can be detected by other people.

If it's off, it can't be detected, but you won't necessarily see someone in space nearby, and might have to rely on someone else to be scanning/watching for incoming hostiles.

Astria Tiphareth
Caldari
24th Imperial Crusade
Posted - 2008.10.30 09:50:00 - [4]
 

I like it; it's vaguely similar to ideas I've read and suggested before. Regardless of details which I'm about to go into, I thoroughly approve of the concept, intent, and would love to see something like this in-game. In particular I like the concept that a skilled pilot (player or SP?) should be able to gain more out of it. A few points:

You didn't really cover much on probes. A good probe ship can currently find other people in seconds, negating much of this scanner stuff. Cloaks are the counter to probes; we currently have an all-or-nothing approach with them - on or off, probe-able or not. I'd argue the same lack of certainty needs to be applied to that arena too, though to avoid making probes obsolete to scanners, they should retain a greater ability to find targets, and cloaking should continue to make you hard to find (perhaps a separation between cloaking and stealth, visibility and 'on radar'?). In one thread I proposed a range of probes and cloaks and a skill set to extend the probing and cloaking to the equivalent hunter/hunter-killer approach you set out here.

The other key area to consider is time. Real submarine warfare can take days; a major criticism of some forms of PvP is that hours can be invested without ever finding someone to shoot at. However this new intel system is balanced, it must remain feasible to find enemies in a 'reasonable' space of time. Range therefore would at minimum need to be as per the current scanner range, but potentially not giving complete results even after multiple scans at extreme range.

It must equally be easy to use - no RSI-inducing repeatedly clicking on Scan buttons, and preferably a proper visual feedback both in normal 3D view and on solar system map. This could be a basis for a future expansion to allow FCs to consolidate the intel of numerous scouts into their own single fleet map.

Finally, I'd opt more for a true radar vs sonar approach. In radar terms, you have a choice of being able to radiate and detect at a given range, but be visible at a far greater range (your proposal covers this) or you can listen and detect passively, at shorter ranges, the radiations of other targets. In other words, I'd make the scanner suite on or off as you propose, but with it off you are not blind, merely operating on background noise and thus have reduced sensor range and precision.

I'd personally roll this out as something like the following:

Change local to behave like a normal channel - speak in it and you're identified, otherwise nobody knows you're there. Remove the total number of people in the channel indicator. At a minimum do this for low-sec and null-sec, CCP don't seem keen to change high-sec local, but to me this is a UI disconnect - users don't want their entire mode of play to change when going from high-sec to low-sec.

Introduce basic onboard scanners as you outline. Have a maximum defined range (same as onboard?) for all scanners, have all ships the same range, and set an update frequency. Have said scanners not touch the area of probes or cloaks at all. Leave this on TQ or Sisi (depending on how brave CCP feel) for a while to tweak the update frequency to establish you're not going to lag out the server. Give time for feedback on basic UI, and so on.

Introduce different ranges per ship. Frigates could have low power sensors, cruisers higher, battleships can fit higher still, but all are outclassed by the true recons, cov ops, force recons etc.

Now look at cloaks, probes, and scanners. My personal take would be a range of cloaks that give increasing performance against detection, possibly coupled with skills, and an equivalent range of probes/scanners & skills that increase detection.

Hugh Ruka
Exploratio et Industria Morispatia
Posted - 2008.10.30 10:10:00 - [5]
 

Edited by: Hugh Ruka on 30/10/2008 10:14:12
quite nicely put together ...

I'd expand this a bit:

1. add traced ships to local with player name and IFF info like we have today
2. add a new overlay to the system map so you can see all you results with positions in system

The active sensor should have a limited range and good information options, passive one should have no limit but only show that somebody is searching. If you are searching for somebody, you need to extend some effort. The prey will now you are trying, but will not know if you pose any danger unless he scans actively himself.

edit:

some more notes on this, I'd like to scale scan results on energy used on the target ship. means the faster you go and more modules you have active the easier you are to scan and pinpoint. there should be a speed threshold for each ship on impulse drive that makes the scan time/result better. like 30% or so ... so you can go silent with moving at max 30% of your speed and no modules active, you are almost a black ship that is hard to detect.

Astria Tiphareth
Caldari
24th Imperial Crusade
Posted - 2008.10.30 10:55:00 - [6]
 

Edited by: Astria Tiphareth on 30/10/2008 10:55:13
Originally by: Hugh Ruka
I'd like to scale scan results on energy used on the target ship. means the faster you go and more modules you have active the easier you are to scan and pinpoint. there should be a speed threshold for each ship on impulse drive that makes the scan time/result better. like 30% or so ... so you can go silent with moving at max 30% of your speed and no modules active, you are almost a black ship that is hard to detect.

Now that is a nice touch. It would give a real meaning to running silent, to moving stealthily.

Wannabehero
Wayward Ventures
Posted - 2008.10.30 15:17:00 - [7]
 

Edited by: Wannabehero on 30/10/2008 15:17:11
Fantastic ideas so far

Could breath life into Blackops, stealthbombers, and other 'stealth' classes if these hulls are given significantly smaller signals for detection than standard ships.

I very much like the ship scanner ability to gradually give stats on the opposing ship

Additionally I would like to suggest including a range variable to success rate of detecting a ship, similar to how probing works now (the ratio of range to target vs. max range plays into success rate). That way once on grid all ships would basically become auto-detected to one another, and if a pilot wanted to reduce the chance of detection he would try to skirt the edge of the system to minimize the chances of passing to close to an actively scanning ship.

my 2 isk

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.10.30 20:28:00 - [8]
 

Well, as regards probes, I was thinking that the major differentiator there should be it's only probes that provide warpable results.

I mean, right now I can get a good idea that someone is in belt 5 around planet 8, and warp to it. If they're offgrid a bit, then I probably need a probe to catch them.

Maybe adding in a multispectral probe too - a bit like the current 'survey' probes, to let you quickly sweep the system for targets. But yes, my intent is that if your 'radar' is on, you're pretty easy to spot right there in that belt. If it's off, then you stand a reasonable chance of going undetected, especially if they're also 'running silent'.

And very definitely, this includes a bit of a revamp of the scanner UI. I was thinking something like 'elite' style, where you get a 'mini' system map, and flags to indicate approximate location and vector of a ship. Once you've detected them of course.
This would IMO need to be automatic - clicking scan every 5 seconds would really suck. But successive rate of classification from 'contact' to 'fully identified' can quite easily be variable, simply by the number of consecutive hits you require.
I'd also expect some kind of warning system for 'hostiles' - so you can set an alarm for e.g. when a war target is detected. Thinking here is that tedious stuff, you shouldn't be forced to do - but make it optional if you want things to be faster.

I also envisage that there should be quite a variance in scanner power.
Industrial stuff shouldn't have much.
The larger a ship is, the more detectable it is, and the better a scanner system it should have.
Exceptions being dedicated 'scout' ships, by which I'm thinking 'stuff which currently fits a probe launcher' - covert ops frigates, and a lesser bonus for recons.

Maybe it's even a function of the recon probe launcher, which means you're able to 'customize' any ship to a scout role, but most ships will be a bit screwed by it.

I'd also love to see 'AWACs' intel control ships - either overloading command ships for the job, or a new ship class.

That allowed a fleet to 'co-ordinate' intel, from various sources, and maybe allow the command ship pilot (or FC) to ... give orders RTS style? Not actually force your units to move, but ... add 'in space markers' for what your FC wants you to do, along with the voice comms orders.

But maybe I'm going a bit far here. Certainly I think it would go a lot reduce the 'snoozefest' of EVE fleet combat, to allow commanders and subcommanders to issue orders in such a way, and share intel amongst the ships - so you know your BS Fleet is slaughering those -10s, on the other side of this gate, which is why it's really important that you stay here, and not feel left out of the action, because there's no time to give commentary.

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.10.30 20:35:00 - [9]
 

Originally by: Wannabehero
Edited by: Wannabehero on 30/10/2008 15:17:11
Fantastic ideas so far

Could breath life into Blackops, stealthbombers, and other 'stealth' classes if these hulls are given significantly smaller signals for detection than standard ships.

I very much like the ship scanner ability to gradually give stats on the opposing ship

Additionally I would like to suggest including a range variable to success rate of detecting a ship, similar to how probing works now (the ratio of range to target vs. max range plays into success rate). That way once on grid all ships would basically become auto-detected to one another, and if a pilot wanted to reduce the chance of detection he would try to skirt the edge of the system to minimize the chances of passing to close to an actively scanning ship.

my 2 isk


Thought would be that Blackops and Stealth bombers would get implicit 'low detectability' through some mechanism, but in such a way as it's always applicable, rather than only whilst cloaked.

Covert ops cloakers on the other hand, would be as easy as the next guy to detect whilst uncloaked, but when cloaked really tough.

And yes, I do like the idea of a diminishing returns system - I believe probes currently incorporate this, but I'm not 100% certain. Ideally this would be proportionate to the volume of space being scanned, so stuff nearby is relatively much easier to spot than stuff 200AU away.

Ideally with the range of being able to spot someone scanning, being further, to allow you, at least in theory, to maneuver around the 'intel coverage' in system.

Wannabehero
Wayward Ventures
Posted - 2008.10.30 20:52:00 - [10]
 

Originally by: James Lyrus
And yes, I do like the idea of a diminishing returns system - I believe probes currently incorporate this, but I'm not 100% certain. Ideally this would be proportionate to the volume of space being scanned, so stuff nearby is relatively much easier to spot than stuff 200AU away.

Ideally with the range of being able to spot someone scanning, being further, to allow you, at least in theory, to maneuver around the 'intel coverage' in system.


Current probing mechanics include the following range variable to success chance of probing a ship out

Range Multiplier = e^(-((Target Range / Max Range of Probe)^2))

Something along those lines I think would fold nicely into the idea presented here.

Cheers

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.10.31 08:03:00 - [11]
 

One of the things that's been pointed out to me, is potential lag causing of this operation.

Y'know, as more people enter system, and start scanning, that's more people polling each other.

I've mostly ignored that - for starters I'm not a dev, and don't know how the code works. But it strikes me that it shouldn't be that much a problem - for starters, as number of pilots in system increases, there's a tendancy for them to be in groups - it's very rare to see 400 pilots, all at a different safespot.

That suggests immediate performance optimizations there - you don't need to poll every ship in system, just run your 'test' against each grid that has a ship on it.

Also I figured there was a substantial difference between a 'few seconds' soft time constraint on scanning, and the level of communication need for the real time sync of fleet combat - if someone fires at you, a second of latency is really bad, where it's probably not even going to get noticed on a scanner.

Your datasets to synchronise are also relatively small - a pilot and ship is static. At a guess, whenever you warp somewhere, it's co-ordinated by the server, so you're not actually doing an O(N^2) operation - you're either polling the solar system handler, to apply a transform to the list of all ships in system (that transform being the scan calculation, and return the result).

Alternatively, since a ship move is presumably co-ordinated - you have to tell people on grid you're leaving and arriving, a 'proximity threshold' approach could work - you register with the server, your scanner is on, and it's power/scan frequency, and it's able to signal you if anything is detected, based upon ships updating their location as they migrate around system.

More expensive than local? Yes, certainly - local is a channel register/deregister. More expensive that 'system scanner'? Per operation, not necesarily. The higher frequency of it might be a concern, but I don't believe that what's trying to happen here is an inherently 'costly' operation - there is no need for each connected client to be real time signalling every other connected client in system, like in a fleet batttle (and that is an expensive operation, as multiway synchronisation always is)

Jarne
Caldari
Increasing Success by Lowering Expectations
Posted - 2008.10.31 12:07:00 - [12]
 

Edited by: Jarne on 31/10/2008 12:09:10
My idea of the new continuous proximity scanner:

Currently, to be scanned with probes incorporates a combination of the scanned ships sensor strength and its signature radius. Let's just keep this, as it seems a good thing and is already established.

There are ideas for a local replacement to incorporate the scanning ship's sensor strength also. I totally agree.

Now the continuous proximity scanner can sense the presence of all ships in a system, but the strength of each signal it receives from another ship depends on the distance of that ship from the scanning ship, the combination of sensor strength and signature radius of the other ship, and the sensor strength of the scanning ship.

I would propose a continuous decrease in signal strength with respect to distance, e.g., a gaussian with a standard deviation depending on the sensor strength of the scanning ship. Let s be the sensor strength of the scanning ship, s' the combined signature radius and sensor strength of the other ship, and x the distance between the two ships:

signal = s' * e^(-x*x/(s*s))

The following image illustrates that, comparing a ship without (narrow curve) and with (broad curve) ECCM activated:

Please visit your user settings to re-enable images.

The signals of all ships in the system are then summed up and the result is presented to the pilot (as a number or as a bar or similar). He now has different methods of interpretation (depending on how the result is rounded/discretized):

- He could tell if the system is empty (if exact values are shown to him), or at least if there is nothing in his vicinity (if the value is rounded, i.e., it could show zero but in fact be something like 0.1, which would be caused by a small ship far away)
- He could tell when a ship is in his vicinity, but he could not tell if it is either a large ship far away or a small ship nearby, or if it is multiple small ships far away or multiple large ships very far away
- He could tell if there are many ships in his vicinity
- By fluctuation of the proximity scanner he could tell that there is either one ship flying around frequently or multiple ships passing by or a combination

Other nice side effects:

- Large (slow) ships are informed about incoming ships earlier than smaller (agile) ships
- Small (tackling?) ships have a better chance to close in to their target because it will have less lead time
- ECCMs will get another use
- Distances in systems will make a difference

A variant of the continuous proximity scanner could allow for a user adjustment of the scanners standard deviation (it's range). Let r be that user-given range parameter:

signal = s' * 1/(r*sqrt(2*pi) * e^(-x*x/(s*s*r*r))

The following image illustrates this. The red curve shows a small user-given range, the green a medium range and the blue one a very high range.

Please visit your user settings to re-enable images.

The height of the curve indicates the accuracy of the scan. If rounding is involved, then with higher range values you can't really be sure if a zero given by the scanner is really equal to no other ships in system. Also with higher range you can't really tell where other ships are. You would also still not know if there is one large or multiple small ships.

Edit: Sorry for the large images, didn't look that large in gnuplot :).
Another thing: The continuous proximity scanner should of course allow to disregard friendly ships in the calculations.

l3xz
Posted - 2008.10.31 14:04:00 - [13]
 

Why not make the suceptability of a ship to be scanned be related to the ships engine, which the type and poweroutput of a ships engine is already in the attributes of each ship. This is an atribute which currently has no bearing in the game, and would be cool to see have a use or reason for being in the attributes of a ship anyway.

Each race uses a specific engine type, and the output is determined by the size and type of ship it propells. This would be the main attribute which the scanner uses to detect a ship in space. All the other ideas you all have would be cool too, but I think this un-utilized attribute already given to each ship should drive the new scanner.

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.11.01 10:49:00 - [14]
 

Hmm, analogue representation of scan results is pretty nice I think. Especially if it's done in a sense of allowing manual 'interpretation' but given time will coalesce into something that's suitable for almost everyone to read.

Ashley Thomas
Curatores Veritatis Alliance
Posted - 2008.11.01 14:34:00 - [15]
 

Edited by: Ashley Thomas on 01/11/2008 14:35:43
how about something extremely simple, scan probes.
only problem with current system and local change is they show ships inside pos bubbles, which is a pain when there's 20 pos and a hauler at every one.

simply hide ships inside pos shields from scan probes, so then any hit you get wont be an unused industrial sitting at a gate.
of course, you still gotta click the scan button constantly, so how about making it auto scan till you click an abort scan button.

for system wide monitoring simply use the 1k au probes, they last a long while and cover everything. yes, smaller ships are harder to find, but that only makes them more usefull in 0.0 now.

perhaps a t2 version could be made that would make finding medium sized ships a little easier to find.

im just trying to find a solution without adding any new modules or any major game mechanics. everything needed to cope with the change is already there, this is just an attempt to make it easier to use.

is this a simple solution for solo miners/ratters? no
but thats kinda the point

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.11.02 00:39:00 - [16]
 

Originally by: Ashley Thomas

how about something extremely simple, scan probes.
only problem with current system and local change is they show ships inside pos bubbles, which is a pain when there's 20 pos and a hauler at every one.

simply hide ships inside pos shields from scan probes, so then any hit you get wont be an unused industrial sitting at a gate.
of course, you still gotta click the scan button constantly, so how about making it auto scan till you click an abort scan button.

for system wide monitoring simply use the 1k au probes, they last a long while and cover everything. yes, smaller ships are harder to find, but that only makes them more usefull in 0.0 now.

perhaps a t2 version could be made that would make finding medium sized ships a little easier to find.

im just trying to find a solution without adding any new modules or any major game mechanics. everything needed to cope with the change is already there, this is just an attempt to make it easier to use.

is this a simple solution for solo miners/ratters? no
but thats kinda the point


You seem to be suggesting 'change nothing' but set probes to auto repeat. Is that correct?
I'm afraid I don't consider that a good solution. Why? Because what local does right now, is let people find each other. Neither ratter, nor roamer wants to be dropping probes with that kind of frequency, even assuming they can fit a probe launcher.

It's my opinion that any mechanic adjustment should be more focuseed on reducing monotonous and annoying operations, not increasing them.

Ashley Thomas
Curatores Veritatis Alliance
Posted - 2008.11.03 01:08:00 - [17]
 

Originally by: James Lyrus
You seem to be suggesting 'change nothing' but set probes to auto repeat. Is that correct?
I'm afraid I don't consider that a good solution. Why? Because what local does right now, is let people find each other. Neither ratter, nor roamer wants to be dropping probes with that kind of frequency, even assuming they can fit a probe launcher.

It's my opinion that any mechanic adjustment should be more focuseed on reducing monotonous and annoying operations, not increasing them.


thats the point

local is being removed for that reason, so i don't feel bad about it. this method makes it hard for the solo ratter/miner. if they want to have an early warning they'll have to sacrifice a high slot to fit a launcher.

scan probes would essentially replace local. just keep it open on the side and look to see if it ever gets a hit. for someone experienced in a cov ops its cycle time will be under 30 seconds easily. longest it will take is 2 minutes tops.

again, everything needed to cope with the loss of local is already there... we don't need new toys or ship improvements to survive.

Gallente Citizen20080612
Posted - 2008.11.03 03:32:00 - [18]
 

Originally by: Astria Tiphareth
I'd argue the same lack of certainty needs to be applied to that arena too, though to avoid making probes obsolete to scanners, they should retain a greater ability to find targets, and cloaking should continue to make you hard to find (perhaps a separation between cloaking and stealth, visibility and 'on radar'?).


From the other side, if a ship is within the scan probe's range, they should get a very strong signal show up on their scanner indicating that a probe is being used.

Also, in general, I think Alliance members should be given the advantage of always knowing who is in Local from their Alliance / Corp. Neutrals, blues and reds should need to be scanned out.

Astria Tiphareth
Caldari
24th Imperial Crusade
Posted - 2008.11.03 15:34:00 - [19]
 

Originally by: James Lyrus
One of the things that's been pointed out to me, is potential lag causing of this operation.

I suspect the lag will actually be quite small. As described by an article on the Destiny engine, the server already has to keep track of who is in what sphere of influence and whom may interact with whom. The existing scanner already reports much of this detail. The major change is frequency (an automatic scanner vs a manual one) and that can be optimised with deltas (you send what has changed, not the entire scanner data each time) and by not sending what is already on grid and have the client add that (in other words don't send the data twice, once for on-grid and once for a scanner display of those same ships). As you say, equally the update need not be every second.

The biggest risk in terms of overall server lag is if everyone throughout EVE had this scanner display open - the equivalent is every person in EVE getting together and all clicking Scan at the same time.

Astria Tiphareth
Caldari
24th Imperial Crusade
Posted - 2008.11.03 15:42:00 - [20]
 

Originally by: Gallente Citizen20080612
Also, in general, I think Alliance members should be given the advantage of always knowing who is in Local from their Alliance / Corp. Neutrals, blues and reds should need to be scanned out.

This is a good point, but perhaps better to treat it as available friendly data on system map rather than in local? The problem is two-fold: having blues always in local encourages people to talk in and use that, and when a red enters, well, accidents will happen. Secondly, coding a local channel that is sometimes showing people and sometimes not is neither great UI design nor great for the developers.

Perhaps a suitable compromise is that friendly ships deliberately enhance their response to friendly scans, and thus when you scan, you get all local friendly ships and all data about them?

Not shooting down the idea, just suggesting an alternative that might prove more palatable in case CCP say 'not a chance we're recoding channels to do that'.

Astria Tiphareth
Caldari
24th Imperial Crusade
Posted - 2008.11.03 15:50:00 - [21]
 

Much as I hate to cross-link, plus this is my third post so I'll shut up now, but this UI proposal makes for interesting reading. Just happened to see it after reading this thread again and thought 'nice, I was asking about a good UI for this, and someone goes and discusses it'.

James Lyrus
Lyrus Associates
The Star Fraction
Posted - 2008.11.03 19:36:00 - [22]
 

Originally by: Astria Tiphareth
Much as I hate to cross-link, plus this is my third post so I'll shut up now, but this UI proposal makes for interesting reading. Just happened to see it after reading this thread again and thought 'nice, I was asking about a good UI for this, and someone goes and discusses it'.


Separate ish idea, but related. I wasn't entirely sure of UI, but rather like the current 'system view' that you get when probing. I would imagine it wouldn't be _too_ hard to have coloured dots showing up in space for 'scan results', and then allow you to zoom out to see more.

What I'd _really_ like though, is development of the RTS elements of EVE - if intel could be shared, and 'directions' be marked in space somehow, to allow for a point and click fleet command and control mechanism. Voice comms sadly only really goes so far, and having tiered commands and reporting up<-> down it's just far more pain than it actually needs to be.

Astria Tiphareth
Caldari
24th Imperial Crusade
Posted - 2008.11.04 15:57:00 - [23]
 

Originally by: James Lyrus
I would imagine it wouldn't be _too_ hard to have coloured dots showing up in space for 'scan results', and then allow you to zoom out to see more.

Sounds like a workable system to me. It can always be improved on or tweaked later.
Originally by: James Lyrus
What I'd _really_ like though, is development of the RTS elements of EVE - if intel could be shared, and 'directions' be marked in space somehow, to allow for a point and click fleet command and control mechanism. Voice comms sadly only really goes so far, and having tiered commands and reporting up<-> down it's just far more pain than it actually needs to be.

Even just getting intel efficiently shared beyond 'enemy ships of *crackle*-mos at *blurb* gate' on voice would be great.

Hugh Ruka
Exploratio et Industria Morispatia
Posted - 2008.11.05 14:26:00 - [24]
 

Originally by: Astria Tiphareth
Originally by: Gallente Citizen20080612
Also, in general, I think Alliance members should be given the advantage of always knowing who is in Local from their Alliance / Corp. Neutrals, blues and reds should need to be scanned out.

This is a good point, but perhaps better to treat it as available friendly data on system map rather than in local? The problem is two-fold: having blues always in local encourages people to talk in and use that, and when a red enters, well, accidents will happen. Secondly, coding a local channel that is sometimes showing people and sometimes not is neither great UI design nor great for the developers.

Perhaps a suitable compromise is that friendly ships deliberately enhance their response to friendly scans, and thus when you scan, you get all local friendly ships and all data about them?

Not shooting down the idea, just suggesting an alternative that might prove more palatable in case CCP say 'not a chance we're recoding channels to do that'.


Or you can give alliances the opportunity to construct a communication network in their SOV systems, this gives a new option of attack (like the cynojammer) and a more fine grained defense system.

Imagine a information relay module that automaticaly transmits IFF signals from ships to local. It will only interpret friendly signals (alliance members) and the others will be treated as unknowns ... you still have to find and identify the unknowns (they still might be blue).


 

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