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Old 05-07-2021, 05:58 PM   #11
Mysterious Dark Lord v3.2
 
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

It all depends on the fiat rules you give your FTL.

And that's the point - they're fiat. What the guy says. You don't have to worry about conforming to rules until the rules are written.

You figure out the rules you want your space battles to follow. Then you design a drive to follow the rules you want. Period.
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Old 05-07-2021, 06:22 PM   #12
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

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Originally Posted by Mysterious Dark Lord v3.2 View Post
It all depends on the fiat rules you give your FTL.

And that's the point - they're fiat. What the guy says. You don't have to worry about conforming to rules until the rules are written.

You figure out the rules you want your space battles to follow. Then you design a drive to follow the rules you want. Period.
Yes, but once the rules are written, other people (the players, other GMs using your setting, et cetra) need to work within them, hence discussions like this.
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Old 05-07-2021, 06:50 PM   #13
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
Sometimes softened to technically you can get to a lot more destinations, but it's very unsafe to jump to a destination that you don't have extensive survey data for. Making it possible to bypass the expected bottleneck locations but only for the desperate or highly prepared.

EDIT: Though in both games and stories this generally has the flaw of being too all-or-nothing. If the main characters try it and it doesn't work it's a presumed TPK...
A way to have this without risking a single bad roll giving you a TPK is to instead have a failed attempt damage (but not destroy) the ship, requiring repairs before it can limp back to some semblance of civilization. The huge delay and the cost to actually get your ship back into full working order would be why most stick to the established routes. Of course, if you're trying to use it to attack another system, getting there in a half-crippled ship may well result in that TPK after all.

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Originally Posted by Prince Charon View Post
Yes, but once the rules are written, other people (the players, other GMs using your setting, et cetra) need to work within them, hence discussions like this.
Discussions like this can also help one determine what fiat rules they want - is a bottleneck desirable? If so, in which direction works best for the setting you want? And so forth.
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Old 05-07-2021, 07:06 PM   #14
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

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The junction is defended against an invasion force coming through it by massive battlestations closely placed around it. The junction is big by many settings' standards - a light-second across - but in setting almost all shipboard weapons have effective ranges longer than that. This was assisted by the wormhole having a detailed tonnage limitation mechanism so that you couldn't cram an entire sixth-of-a-cubic-lightsecond of warships through at once (Though that would be a bit less than it sounds like because the space drive forces a relatively large spacing between craft).
Actually, you could, but the wormhole would then be unusable for many hours so you'd better damned well win if you did that because there was no retreat.
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Old 05-07-2021, 07:13 PM   #15
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

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Originally Posted by Varyon View Post
Discussions like this can also help one determine what fiat rules they want - is a bottleneck desirable? If so, in which direction works best for the setting you want? And so forth.
And how tight a bottleneck.

Also, if there are wormholes/jumpoints, how far are they from any points of interest within the star system? Remote jump points mean any invaders, smugglers, etc. are probably seen a long way from where they are going, and that makes tactical surprise and gun-running very hard. If they are close to a world (or whatever) gun-running and other smuggling by being sneaky and fast works (like in Star Wars) and, unless the jump point is easy to interdict (which also does for the gun-runners), so do surprise attacks.
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Old 05-08-2021, 01:08 AM   #16
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

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Actually, you could, but the wormhole would then be unusable for many hours so you'd better damned well win if you did that because there was no retreat.
There was a maximum tonnage you could put through in one transit. I don't think it was equivalent to 'as many superdreadnoughts as will fit in the wormhole volume'.

Also, really, there's no meaningful option to retreat regardless while fighting the forts, because beam engagements are far too fast, and no real obstacle to retreat once you've broken them. If you've destabilized the wormhole you can't retreat through it, but you can simply retreat into hyperspace.
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Old 05-08-2021, 07:45 AM   #17
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

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There was a maximum tonnage you could put through in one transit. I don't think it was equivalent to 'as many superdreadnoughts as will fit in the wormhole volume'.
There are also Matt Visser's traverseable wormholes, where masses passing through transfer energy from one mouth to the other. This means that over the long term the mass flow has to be balanced in both directions or the wormhole will collapse. An invading fleet could pass through in a short time, but then would immediately have to locate (e.g.) suitable asteroids to send back through to maintain the opening before bringing any further reinforcements or supplies.

His throat dimensions could be fairly restricted, which would lead to "Panamax" freighters optimized for the opening.
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Old 05-08-2021, 08:57 AM   #18
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

Another options for wormholes is to say that in a given time a max volume / mass can pass it. So after a big ship there would be a cooldown time making big fleets jumping simultan nearly impossible.

Some other method often used in computer games is that you have wormholes that have different passage times, like a green wormhole allows a ship to cross the distance in zero time, a yellow one needs 1 hour passage time and a black one will reach the target destination sometime in the next millenia.

If you use this you can always add in that the distance between the jump points has to be counted in.

That makes wormholes effectiely space roads, from forbidden lanes or one way up to the autobahn.

Any world should had have access to the web of wormhole lanes, but some of it are one ways or blind end, making worlds with multiple wormholes sought after places. In the Honorverse manticore got a big part of their money not from own industry / labour but from the wonderfully connection to several wormhole lanes.
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Old 05-09-2021, 06:36 PM   #19
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

A bit about the wormholes in the Irar setting mentioned in the OP, from a post I'm working on for that thread:

Wormholes in this setting are very difficult to detect at range, if no-one has placed a beacon or guard-station nearby. Scanning for them optically or otherwise using electromagnetic radiation, you're only going to find one if you're very close (Long-Distance Modifiers, pB241) and know to look for a visual distortion in the background objects (Astronomy-3 on top of the Long-Distance modifier), or if you happen to see something enter or leave, that doesn't have a cloaking device. Psychotronic detection systems do much better, having penalties based on light-second ranges (Size and Speed-Range table, pB550; treat 'yards' as light-seconds, and Speed/Range as the penalty; an Astronomical Unit is just under 500 light-seconds). You still need to be looking in the right place, though. Once you know where it is, following its orbital path becomes far less difficult, though you can still lose it of you aren't careful. A wormhole's mean radius of orbit mostly varies roughly between 3 AU and 13 AU (2d+1 AU, in other words).

The physical nature of a wormhole as currently understood is a spherical spacial and gravitic anomaly which reads to psychic detection somewhat like a continuous teleportation. The amount of gravity it produces is quite small, far out of proportion with the difficulty of altering its orbit (which so far no-one has managed). It is possible to pass through in both directions (manoeuver toward the centre of the wormhole, and you will come out the other side); oddly, vessels cannot collide in the 'tunnel' - they simply move around each other. Psychic or psychotronic communication is possible though the wormhole, though radio or laser communication seems not to be. Likewise, it is possible to scan though the wormhole using psychic senses and psychotronic sensors, though at best you're only likely to 'see' a few light-seconds around the wormhole on the other side.


Thoughts?
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Old 05-10-2021, 07:59 AM   #20
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Default Re: [Space] Space Strategy: FTL Bottlenecks

The "Starfire" novels by David Weber and Steve White, based on the game of the same name use jump points. There's a lot of discussion about jump point strategy from a defensive and an offensive standpoint.
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