Terran Stellar Navy › Forums › (OOC) Division Development › ((OOC)) Fighter Squadron of the 2nd Fleet, 4th Light Division › Reply To: ((OOC)) Fighter Squadron of the 2nd Fleet, 4th Light Division
It will be interesting to see exactly how fighters are implemented within the game. For example – will every ship have a fighter assigned? How many fighters will there be per ship? How do those fighters navigate through space e.g. figuring out headings?
Personally, I see us having a carrier attached to the Division and a small fighter wing being launched from that. I like the idea of having the squadron pilots organised into their own subchannel. I do wonder what their experience would be like during a mission or out of combat when they are waiting though. Potentially, they could become very isolated. One way to overcome this would be to allow them to listen in to comms like that in the Comms Relay, and then be able to shut that off when they are actually flying. That way, they can still track what is going on.
Wade, your idea of having an officer acting to coordinate their actions seems a good one to look in to. The carrier could have a slightly different crew make up – helm officer, engineer, captain, fighter commander (sci), and then about 3 fighter pilots. Rather than the science officer scanning and getting frequencies, they’d be identifying targets and directing the fighters. The captain would have overall command – calling for fighters to be launched and designating the target, engineer and helm fulfilling their normal role. Weapons would seem obsolete though. I see carriers sitting at long range and keeping out of trouble, only using weapon systems for close range defense rather than attack. When not flying, one of the fighter pilots could act as weapons officer. When they are not deployed, they would be manning the weapons console. Being on the bridge, the captain could order the launch of the fighters directly to the weapons officer, who would then head to the fighter channel and get the other pilots set for launch. Should the carrier be ambushed, it would be down to one of the officers remaining on the bridge to quickly pick up weapons, which could create some interesting tension.
There are a couple of reason behind my thinking. One – the RP aspect of crew composition and interaction between everyone. We don’t want loads of pilots sat around waiting. If they can fill roles on a carrier temporarily, then it still means they can take part in normal crew interaction as well as manning a fighter in combat. Two – the numbers of officers we have turning up. For every pilot, there will be one less bridge officer. I like playing with multiple crew, ideally fully staffed, but with at least 5 officers. If you consider in a mission we already lose one to Command and Control, having 3, 4, maybe even 5, go and man fighters means we have one less ship in the Division.
In terms of sci/comms – we should move away from having the combined role where possible. At the moment, we use it due to crew numbers being 5 on average. Where possible, we should have dedicated science and dedicated comms officers. In combat, I think there is too much going on to effectively coordinate the two roles, particularly when players are only using one console and switching between the two tabs. Having two screens side-by-side with a science screen and a comms screen means you can coordinate things better, but many don’t have ability to do this.
Comms officers definitely need access to a sector map view (science or captain’s screen) to be able to get a good view of what is going on. To coordinate allied ships and direct them effectively (organising destroyers/ escorts into small groups to attack), having that awareness of where they are and how best to direct them is essential. Those allied ships, when formed into small groups, can be used really well to defend particular areas of space. It would be interesting if more situations can be set up in mission to be able to do this, (a job for C&C GMs to consider). I have met and trained comms officers who became exceptionally good at this, and will happily explain to anyone how to do it (forming groups, directing groups, getting them to hold position etc). It does take a dedicated comms officer to do it properly though and needs to be clear who is doing what. Once, we had a system where one comms officer directed non-combat allies, and one directed combat groups. We should look back into this and put more emphasis on it to become good again – the systems are there, they just need practising.