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Old 08-07-2019, 01:03 AM   #11
Tom H.
 
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Location: Central Texas, north of Austin
Default Re: Triplanetary - Landing and Takeoff

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Originally Posted by Desert Scribe View Post
Hey Tom. If you're not too far north of Austin, maybe we can get together for a game sometime.
Hey Desert Scribe, thanks for the offer.

Right now, I'm pretty tied up with settling in from a big move, but we should keep in touch through messages for something possibly later in the year.
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Old 09-06-2019, 01:00 AM   #12
Tom H.
 
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Default Re: Triplanetary - Landing and Takeoff

I found some discrepancies on how we all are interpreting the launch procedure.

This is causing a lack of clarity in techniques for leaving a planet, and an official clarification would be welcome.

The launch procedure is governed by two rule concepts.
  1. The natural way the astrogation and gravity rules work.
  2. The imposition and explanation of Landing and Takeoff constraints on p. 4.

I see three ways to interpret the launch procedure.

The ways depend on how you apply the fundamental gravity rule, see p. 3, to launch.
Quote:
Gravity takes effect on the turn after an object enters the gravity hex.
1. Natural astrogation, ignore additional constraints
This method ignores the arbitrary rule that takeoff velocity is immediately cancelled.
Example.
Turn 1: Boost off planet into initial gravity hex. Velocity is 1 away from the planet.
Turn 2: Astrogation applies the gravity hex from turn 1, now the ship is velocity 0. But now it can burn a fuel.
This burn can put it into orbit, or have it escape into space altogether.
Consequences.
Entering orbit feels unnecesary unless imposed.
Discussion.
This may be more inline with the 2e version of the game as desribed by RogerBW earlier here.
I prefer this method.

2. Double launch gravity
This method respects the arbitrary rule that takeoff velocity is immediately cancelled, but then also applies a gravity effect to turn 2.
Example.
Turn 1: Boost off planet into initial gravity hex. Planetary gravity mandates velocity is now 0.
Turn 2: Astrogation applies the gravity hex from turn 1, now the ship is velocity 1 back into the planet. But now it can burn a fuel to avoid a crash.
The recommended course of action would be to enter orbit.
Consequences.
  • Launch gravity is stronger because it is effectively applied twice: once immediately on launch and then again as it carries over into the next turn.
  • You can't escape the planet on turn 2.
  • This appears to make orbiting a planet to leave it a necessity.
  • This allows for the peculiar, obscure escape of the planet described by HeatDeath here.

3. Preprocess launch gravity
This method respects the arbitrary rule that takeoff velocity is immediately cancelled, but then ignores any additional gravity effect applied to turn 2.
The assumption is that launch is a special case in which the gravity effect is taken "early".
Example.
Turn 1: Boost off planet into initial gravity hex. Planetary gravity mandates velocity is now 0.
Turn 2: Due to the launch special case, gravity is not reapplied now. The ship is still at velocity 0. But now it can burn a fuel.
This burn can put it into orbit, or have it escape into space altogether. (The rules seem to constrain you to orbit.)
Consequences.
This really plays out the same as method 1.
Discussion.
I believe that this is the way I assumed everything worked when I first played the training mission many moons ago.
I really just assumed you would somehow need to get into orbit on turn 2, and start the game from there.

Conclusion
I wonder if method 1 was the procedure for 2e. Maybe Steve liked how method 2 seemed to force you to enter orbit and based 3e on it. However, was he aware of the unusual consequence that HeatDeath discovered?

Should there be these two rule layers to takeoff:
  1. Movement mechanics
  2. Arbitrary orbit requirements

I hope this consolidates a lot of the ongoing debate about how takeoffs might be tweaked.
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Old 09-06-2019, 01:31 AM   #13
Tom H.
 
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Default Re: Triplanetary - Landing and Takeoff

P.S.

I just wanted to summarize HeatDeath's launch technique.

With the Double Launch Gravity method in effect, the ship thrusts back close to the planet. It then allows the rapid accumulation of gravity hexes to whip the ship around and out the back side of the planet to escape.

Last edited by Tom H.; 09-06-2019 at 01:35 AM.
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