Wednesday, July 7, 2004

SWG: Jump to Lightspeed: Advanced Sensor Ops

RontoMike wrote:
Great idea! I had a similar (but much more simplistic) idea.... have the JtL in-game "radar" operate on a line-of-sight that can be blocked by planets & asteroids. (Maybe have nebulae have a % chance of blocking sensors, depending on the sophistication of the sensor package.)
I imagine a more advanced sensor system still being able to use the "radar" display -- it just gets a few more controls added to it to let you select between the various scan modes.

For example, you'd start out in the Passive EMS scanning mode, where you could pick up information on nearby energy sources without broadcasting your own location (assuming you've turned off your ID transponder). Below your scope would be two buttons: "Passive EMS" and "Active EMS". Clicking on either of these would reveal a radial menu of sensor options, including "All".

So if you then clicked on "Active EMS" | "All", your ship would start "pinging" with the entire suite of active sensors to locate and describe nearby objects. (This is where I'd like to see a Sensor Ops or Avionics discipline -- someone with better sensor skills should be able to get more information about other ships, in the same way that Scouts/Rangers get more detailed creature stats.) Or you could choose "Active EMS" | "Radar" and have your scope work just like it does now on the ground (with possibly a couple of enhancements for space combat).

This idea would also require some sort of object size vs. ship size check.... a Star Destroyer would have a much harder time hiding in an asteroid field than an X-Wing....
Which is absolutely as it should be. An ISD basically shouldn't care if you can see it -- in fact, the "shock and awe" they are intended to inspire depend on their being seen; the big Imperial ships should normally be doing everything they can to light up every sensor within a parsec. If their sheer size and destructive capability can persuade you to give up because the Emperor is too strong to fight, so much the better.

From the Empire's point of view, of course. :)

Although there are some Rebels who "prefer a straight fight to all this sneakin' around," you're right that the Rebellion would benefit more from having an enhanced sensor environment in SWG. Being able to use "natural cover" (nebulae, asteroids, stars, etc.) would give offer Rebels the tactical options necessary for the shadowy hit-and-run strikes that should be their modus operandi. (I don't recall seeing in the movies any Red Squadron pilots flying around looking for TIE fighters and saying things like, "d00d, u wanna duel?", then cloning and doing it again....)