04182015, 04:01 AM  #1 
Join Date: Jul 2010

GURPS Space GURPS Math
Not sure if it is GURPS Space but I remember flicking through one GURPS supplement to do with sc fi and it left me utterly baffled. I think it actually was rocket science the book got into in some parts. I understand GURPS tends to simulate our earthly physics (for the most part), but for the longest time it turned me off GURPS.
Do you sometimes labour under the number crunching that GURPS sometimes requires? I struggle with math, always have, so I was wondering if anyone else out there had the same math issues as myself and what they did to overcome that? I've always thought a little pdf supplement showing what calculations GURPS requires in places (square roots, algebra, working out percentages/fractions etc) and how to perform those calculations would be very handy for those who struggle with number crunching. I know GURPS has examples, but if you just don't have any base from which to work from they don't help much if you have no idea what's going on from the get go. 
04182015, 04:08 AM  #2 
Join Date: Mar 2013

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
The most likely book to have caused these memories is Vehicles

04182015, 04:21 AM  #3  
Join Date: May 2008
Location: CA

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
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If you actually are struggling with that, then I'd recommend looking at some generic math tutorials  the Khan Academy apparently has some good ones. I can't see any point to GURPS producing a supplement about the math required in GURPS; all that will do is make people think that GURPS requires difficult math when it doesn't, and that's already a meme for some unknown reason. However, I think what's scaring you is that GURPS provides math functions in addition to the tables sometimes  but that doesn't mean the math function is required, it only means that the authors are showing their work. Further, some (very) optional supplements do use advanced math functions extensively, but these are very much not required and not used by the vast majority of GURPS players  the main thing I can think of off the top of my head is the 'The Deadly Spring' article about designing realistic bows, which was featured in Pyramid and included a spreadsheet to do all the actual calculations for you so it didn't even need you to understand how the math works to make use of it. The Vehicle Design System (should it ever actually see the light of day) may also use some slightly more complicated math, as the similar GURPS Vehicles for 3e did. 

04182015, 04:32 AM  #4 
Join Date: Mar 2013

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
The only time square roots have shown up are in Space and only in a few cases in the world/system design stuff, calculator in windows will handle that fine

04182015, 06:10 AM  #5 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Meifumado

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
Spaceships discusses deltaV a fair bit that might not be so intuitive to a nonmathie.
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04182015, 06:26 AM  #6 
Banned
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
The DeltaV discussion should have been prefaced with  "Technical discussion  if you're not interested just skip it and wing it".

04182015, 08:05 AM  #7 
Banned
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Europe

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
GURPS Spaceships has a simplified yet quite good abstraction of the "fuel mass fraction" calculation for reaction drives. I kept not wanting to bother with the complex formulae using logarithms and so forth in GURPS Vehicles and in various editions of GURPS Space, yet wanting something that is at least somewhat simulative. GURPS Spaceships delivers that.

04182015, 09:20 AM  #8  
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Meifumado

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
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I'm not bagging the book or the Spaceships line, I got a lot of enjoyment out of building the spaceships that showed up in our scifi/fantasy game, but I had to read and absorb the whole design system before the pieces fell together.
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04182015, 09:39 AM  #9  
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Southeast NC

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
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04182015, 10:46 AM  #10 
Join Date: Jun 2005

Re: GURPS Space GURPS Math
I'm afraid I'm somewhere at the other end of the spectrum; for example, when I used Vehicles I would get out my calculator and find the exact cube roots instead of using the table, because it was faster and easier. Then there was the time when I'd mislaid my calculator and got out one of my slide rules (I keep two as ceremonial heirlooms) to approximate the cube roots. . . .
When I was working on Weird War II, though, I put in a table of multiples of exhaust velocity you could get as final velocity based on percentage of mass that was fuel/reaction mass, to spare people taking logarithms. If Spaceships has done the same thing I think that's a good idea.
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