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Old August 13 2011, 05:25 PM   #508
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Location: Spokane, WA, USA
Re: Star Ship Polaris

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Can we see a detail of the warning icons at the thrusters?

Here is some thinking out loud on the warning icons... What's their purpose? Who is being reminded where the thrusters are and why? What accidents are trying to be avoided? Another option might be to go with a subtler approach, and give the thruster emplacements a slightly different color. That could still achieve a warning effect, without the neon sign saying, "place IED here".
I figure the warning icons are mostly for the benefit of people working outside in EVA suits. The ship would have to be held at station-keeping, meaning the thrusters could be active. You wouldn't want someone wandering in front of one just as it fired.

Sure, you could paint the thrusters themselves bright orange or something, but then you're calling attention to them at least as much as a warning icon would. The way I figure it, an enemy isn't going to waste their time trying to take out maneuvering thrusters anyway. Assuming they have some goal other than to obliterate the ship outright, they would more likely target the main engines, drive spheres, weapons pylons, something like that.

Another thing to consider is that the primary offensive weapons in this universe are missiles, probably with fairly high-yield warheads. Aiming one of those at something as small as a maneuvering thruster would probably be rather pointless because it's going to take out half the rest of the ship anyway.

While we're on the subject of maneuvering thrusters, I do have a slight quandary I need to resolve. It occurs to me that the thrusters just outboard of the cargo bay doors are going to be blocked by those doors when they are in their open positions. That could present problems when the ship is trying to maintain station-keeping during cargo transfer operations. I think I'm going to have to relocate those thrusters, maybe use two instead of one with them positioned on either side of where the open doors would be. That would make more sense anyway because it would take a fair amount of thrust to spin this ship on its axis.

ZStar wrote: View Post
Since the ship has be hastily modified for combat duties, should the modifications have a more bolted on, patchwork, bare metal appearance to indicate aesthetics and matching the original paint scheme were not a priority during the refit?
Well, the primary modifications were weapons enhancements. The pylons on either side of the forward fuselage were originally intended to mount scientific equipment, scanners, sensor probes, etc. They might have had some smaller beam weapons, maybe even a missile or two, as well as the point-defense turrets. The refit replaced nearly all the scientific instruments with missile racks and swapped out the fixed beam cannons for much larger and more powerful versions. In fact, if you go back through this thread, you'll see WIP images of the 3D model showing how the new cannons were so much larger that they had to cut holes in the backs of the pylons to mount them. Probably they also upgraded the ship's tactical systems, added crew berths, expanded medical facilities, that sort of stuff.

I'm still toying with the idea that they may have also added some armor plating to a few areas like the main engines, weapons pylons, fuel tanks, etc, but at this point that would be a little like welding steel plates to a classic car. Not that aesthetics carry much weight when it comes to battle preparedness, but after putting so much work into the ship's style and appearance, I hate to obscure it behind a bunch of armor plating.

I don't know. We'll see what shakes out after the basic design is complete.
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