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Old 2013-01-04, 08:52 PM   [Ignore Me] #286
Lieutenant General
Baneblade's Avatar
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

The problem is, SOE will likely make them way too powerful or way too easy to kill. But then, maybe they will do it the way proposed and it will be straight awesome out of the box.
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Old 2013-01-08, 04:05 AM   [Ignore Me] #287
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

I would love to look up and see 2 or more cruisers battling it out among libs and gals while tanks fire up at them. awesomesauce.
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Old 2013-01-20, 05:16 PM   [Ignore Me] #288
First Sergeant
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Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

[Metagame Design Meeting Idea] Outfit Air Cruisers Redux
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Old 2013-01-21, 06:17 AM   [Ignore Me] #289
Lieutenant General
Baneblade's Avatar
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Nice, I don't reddit, but if I did that is what it would be about.
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Old 2013-02-11, 10:15 PM   [Ignore Me] #290
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Love the idea. It also be awsome if it could function as a command center, allowing leaders who stay behind in it a better view of a battlefield, like a war room where a leader can (with restrictions) be able to give orders based on the situation, such as marking priority targets.
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Old 2013-02-19, 08:57 PM   [Ignore Me] #291
Second Lieutenant
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Such a great idea deserves a space in the official forums as well.
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Old 2013-02-19, 09:43 PM   [Ignore Me] #292
Sergeant Major
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Problem is the oficial forums are such a mess the idea would inicialy be bashed by people who only read the title then burried by generic rant thread #99999
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Old 2013-12-28, 07:05 PM   [Ignore Me] #293
Lieutenant General
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Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

After experiencing the way PS2 feels and handles such things, I have revised my OAC idea. OACs can be spawned freely so long as the outfit resource pool is sufficient and the timer has been expended. Outfits will be given an outfit resource pool specific to them. Outfit Resources will not be based on performance or how many players you can zerg with, nor even how many BR 100s you can stack on a medic.

It takes 7 days to fill the pool to capacity from zero.

There are four base frames to work with: Frigate, Destroyer, Cruiser, and Battlecruiser. All of them have Outfit Spawns which feature no timers, are always available, and are accessible from any continent. OACs are altitude locked at 50% of flight ceiling. They have no ability to reduce or increase altitude. They are essentially water naval ships in the air in regards to navigation and combat.

OACs have their own ingame voice channels. OAC Commanders can also talk to each other over voice with either the general broadcast (enemies can talk to each other) or the faction broadcast. There are also chatbox analogs to those channels.

Once spawned, each OAC has a minimum activity timer that must be expired before it can be despawned with a 100% resource refund. That timer is 6 hours. If the timer is not expired, the OAC will not despawn and can be destroyed. Despawning an OAC is merely a mirror of the spawning process and requires the OAC to be at the spawning facility. Once the despawn is triggered, the OAC remains in the world for 15 minutes. It can be attacked and destroyed during those 15 minutes, but moving it or using its weapons or abilities cancels the despawn and restarts the 6 hour timer.

OAC Weapon systems are entirely designed to combat other OACs and thus eschew the ability to effectively combat smaller aircraft and have no ability to engage ground targets (OAC weapons are like AA turrets on ground vehicles and have no ability to aim lower than 0 degrees). OAC hardpoints are either fore or aft with 270 degree arcs centered on their orientation (broadsides will be common for all but the Frigate), they also only have 10 degrees of up vertical adjustment. OAC Weapons have limited ammo and must be resupplied, which can be done by parking over a friendly ammo tower and entering resupply mode. Resupply mode takes 300 seconds to completely rearm the ship from empty.

Frigates are the fastest OACs (50 kph straight line, 30 while turning) and can choose from two special abilities: Cloaking or Engine Overload. Cloaking works like all other cloaking systems in PS2, with one exception: The Frigate does double damage for 30 seconds after decloaking. EO is basically an afterburner and can add 20 kph to the Frigate's current speed for 5 seconds, reaching that +20 kph by the 5th second. Frigates have two fore hardpoints for weapons, are about the footprint of three Galaxies, and have two internal decks (Command and Crew). The Command Deck is small and cramped, with only space for the Commander and the two Gunners. The Crew deck is about the size of a Tower Spawn room featuring an equipment terminal and a dropship trooper hatch (essentially a down elevator to the ground). The Frigate has no outside deck access. The only way to board the Frigate is via spawning.

Destroyers are offensive specialists with solid speed (40/25 kph). The Destroyer special is Interdiction, a leeching effect that basically does to enemy OACs what a concussion grenade does to enemy infantry. It is an AOE ability that centers around the Destroyer. Being a short range ability (less than 500 m) it requires some effort and balls to pull off. Destroyers have three fore and one aft hardpoint and are about the footprint of five Galaxies. They have a larger command deck with windows. The crew deck is larger with windows. The Destroyer also has a small Flight Deck large enough to handle one Lib or a couple ESFs. The Flight Deck rearms/repairs aircraft.

The Cruiser is the backbone of an OAC Fleet, costing half what the Battlecruiser does, with respectable offense and defense. Speed however, is not on the agenda at only 30/20 kph). Weighing in at seven Galaxies worth of footprint, the Cruiser sports one of two specials: Ablative Armor or Retaliation. Ablative Armor enhances the Cruiser's natural armor to ignore most damage for a short amount of time and to repair some of it (think Fire Suppression mixed with Vanguard Shield). Retaliation quickens weapon rate of fire by 25% whenever the hull is below 75%. The Cruiser Command Deck is large and has access to an external flying bridge. The Crew Deck is spacious and has an observation lounge. The Flight Deck is large enough for a Galaxy and retains the rearm/repair feature.

The Battlecruiser is by far the pinnacle of OACs, footprinting at twelve Galaxies and being able to use both available specials at the same time, it is clearly the king of the skies. At 25/15 kph it is definitely the slowest king ever... except maybe Henry VIII. The BC features Shields and Aircraft Spawning. Shields are an always on ability that adds roughly 50% to the already impressive defense. Shields regenerate over time and protect the otherwise exposed Flight Deck while active. Shields must be fully drained of hp to be deactivated, and require 15 minutes to recharge before reactivating. Aircraft Spawning is done on the carrier-like Flight Deck, only ESFs and Liberators may be spawned. The Command Deck resembles a control tower and allows clear visibility of the skies around the BC. The Crew Deck adds a meeting room for outfits to gather together in. The BC has a Cargo Deck which allows it to load and unload ground vehicles with infantry style elevators. The Cargo Deck is protected by the hull of the OAC and is large enough to move five MBTs comfortably.

I'll edit a quote of this into the OP as an update.
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Old 2013-12-28, 07:10 PM   [Ignore Me] #294
Lieutenant General
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Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Original OP Text Reposted for Historical Reference (OP is over length limits, so had to remove something).

Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

This has been in the works in one form or another since 2004, and even now I still believe that Airships are the way to bring outfit bases into the game. They give outfits a centerpiece to either relax in safely from a distance or bring into actual combat. They also give outfits something to invest in to increase their relative power and prestige. And the most critical part, they add a naval combat aspect that will add to and not take from the existing PlanetSide theatres of war.

Air Cruisers would not be BFRs nor GGs, they would have little to no direct interaction with the ground game outside of being a transport and mobile spawn point. Air Cruisers cannot land and they are locked into a fixed altitude (roughly 60% of whatever flight ceiling will be). Their weapons are designed to engage other Air Cruisers with. They have limited built in AA (essentially only gatling guns, no flak). Outfits can only have one Air Cruiser at a time and losing it starts a 7 day timer before a replacement can be purchased. The idea is that these are significant assets to protect. On the other hand, Air Cruisers also constantly consume resources, whether they are being used or not. They are persistant assets and can't all fit in the 'sanc'.

Each Faction would have three base hulls to choose from designed to facilitate that faction's strengths and evidence their weaknesses. Air Cruisers would have several modular subsystems to upgrade to alter the operation or even just enhance the Air Cruiser. The modules include: Engineering Module (Engines and Generator), Defensive Module (Shield Generator and Armor Plating), Offensive Module (Weapon hardpoints), Spawn Module (spawn capacity and utilities such as terminals), Hangar Module (Size and Capacity of Hangar Deck), and Cargo Module (Ability to transport Vehicles Supreme Commander style such as MBTs).

The three hull classifications would be Light Cruiser, Heavy Cruiser, and Battle Cruiser. The Light Cruiser is roughly 100 meters in length, with the Heavy coming in at 160 and the Battle Cruiser rocking 220 meters. The Light Cruiser is allowed ten module upgrade points, the Heavy twenty, and the Battle thirty. Each module requires a certain point cost to be upgraded. Light Cruisers cannot upgrade any module beyond Mark III regardless of available points. Heavy Cruisers cannot upgrade beyond Mark IV leaving Battle Cruisers as the only hull able to upgrade to Mark V.

Air Cruisers will have several vulnerabilities, such as balconeys with access doors, enemy accessible flight deck/hangars, limited maneuverability to avoid heavy ordinance, destructible weapons (Heavy Weapons can be disabled via concentrated fire or internal sabotage), crew compliment requirements to maintain the vessel, and finally NTU fuel. Deprive an Air Cruiser of NTU and it will enter an offline mod, which will make destroying it relatively easy. Shields and Engines are the primary NTU burners, with weapons and spawns taking a smaller constant amount. Normal non combat operations with a Basic Engineering Module would need refueling every eight hours (twenty four with Mark V Engineering). Combat Operations could drop that down to as little as two hours (six with Mark V Engineering). Generators (Power and Shield), Engines, and Spawns can be disabled through damage and/or sabotage.

An unmanned Air Cruiser would be destroyed in short order. Yet a fully crewed AC could shrug off the same attack.

Each Module System comes in Six Levels:

Mark I
Mark II
Mark III
Mark IV
Mark V

All hulls are equipped with Basic Modules when purchased.

Module Key words:

Standard = 100%
Enhanced = 125%
Advanced = 150%
HAWT     = High Altitude Warrior Transfer
Basic Module Overview: No Upgrade Point

Engineering - One Standard Power Generator, One Standard NTU Storage Tank, One Standard Engine
Defensive   - One Standard Shield Generator (100,000 HP), Standard Armor Plating
Offensive   - One Forward Heavy Weapon Hardpoint, Two Lateral Point Defense Hardpoints
Spawn       - One 60 Second Spawn Tube, One Non MAX Access Equipment Terminal, One HAWT Drop tube
Hangar      - One Small Aircraft Hangar Bay (hangar door not large enough for Liberators or Galaxies)
Cargo       - One Ventral Heavy Lift Platform (One MBT or Two Lightnings per Platform)
Mark I Module OVerview: One Upgrade Point

Engineering - One Enhanced Power Generator, One Large Capacity NTU Storage Tank, One Enhanced Engine
Defensive   - One Enhanced Shield Generator (125,000 HP), Enhanced Armor Plating (increases damage mitigation of hull, adds mass)
Offensive   - Two Forward Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, Four Lateral Point Defense Hardpoints
Spawn       - Two 60 Second Spawn Tubes, Two non MAX Access Equipment Terminals, Two HAWT Drop Tubes
Hangar      - One Large Aircraft Hangar Bay (large enough for one Galaxy)
Cargo       - Two Ventral Heavy Lift Platforms
Mark II Module Overview: Two Upgrade Points

Engineering - One Advanced Power Generator, One Advanced NTU Storage Tank, One Advanced Engine
Defensive   - One Advanced Shield Generator (150,000 HP), Advanced Armor Plating
Offensive   - Two Forward Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, One Aft Heavy Weapon Hardpoint, Four Lateral Point Defense Hardpoints
Spawn       - Three 60 Second Spawn Tubes, Three Non MAX Access Terminals, Three HAWT Drop Tubes
Hangar      - One Large Aircraft Hangar Bay, One Small Aircraft Hangar Bay
Cargo       - Four Ventral Heavy Lift Platforms
Mark III Module Overview: Four Upgrade Points (Max for Light Cruiser)

Engineering - Two Standard Power Generators, Two Standard NTU Storage Tanks, Two Standard Engines
Defensive   - Two Standard Shield Generators (200,000 HP), Advanced Armor Plating, Standard Armor Plating for Weapon Hardpoints
Offensive   - Two Forward Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, Two Aft Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, Four Lateral Point Defense Hardpoints
Spawn       - Three 45 Second Spawn Tubes, Three MAXable Terminals, Three HAWT Tubes
Hangar      - Two Large Aircraft Hangar Bays
Cargo       - Six Ventral Heavy Lift Platforms
Mark IV Module Overview: Eight Upgrade Points (Max for Heavy Cruiser)

Engineering - Two Enhanced Power Generators, Two Enhanceded NTU Storage Tanks, Two Enhanced Engines
Defensive   - Two Enhanced Shield Generators (250,000 HP), Advanced Armor Plating, Enhanced Armor Plating for Hardpoints
Offensive   - Three Forward Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, Two Aft Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, Six Lateral Point Defense Hardpoints
Spawn       - Three 30 Second Spawn Tubes, Three MAXable Terminals w/ 25% discount, Three HAWT Tubes
Hangar      - Small Flight Deck (large enough to comfortably handle three Galaxies; Flight Decks are all through deck designs)
Cargo       - Eight Ventral Heavy Lift Platforms
Mark V Module OVerview: Sixteen Upgrade Points

Engineering - Two Advanced Power Generators, Two Advanced NTU Storage Tanks, Two Advanced Engines
Defensive   - Two Advanced Shield Generators (300,000 HP), Advanced Armor Plating, Advanced Armor Plating for Hardpoints
Offensive   - Three Forward Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, Three Aft Heavy Weapon Hardpoints, Six Lateral Point Defense Hardpoints
Spawn       - Three 15 Second Spawn Tubes, Three MAXable Terminals w/ 50% discount, Three HAWT Tubes
Hangar      - Large Flight Deck (five Galaxies comfortably)
Cargo       - Twelve Ventral Heavy Lift Platforms
As you can see, even with a Battle Cruiser, you can't max out every module, you have to consider a balance or even a specialization for your Air Cruiser, no one setup to rule them all.

Weapons Hardpoints can be turrets or launchers. They are empire specific. TR might have a Kinetic Autocannon or a Rapid Fire Missile Launcher. NC might have a good ole 500mm Cannon or Torpedo Launcher. And those pesky VS might be looking at choosing between a Laser Beam or a Plasma Burst. Point Defense Hardpoints are typically common gatling guns or something more empire specific: TR 1000 rounds per minute chaingun, NC Rotary Flechette Cannon, VS Rapid Fire Railgun.

All Heavy Turrets are locked into a 270 degree horizontal arc with absolutely no verticle arc. Meaning it can't aim up or down, only left and right. Broadsides are possible and even encouraged. Launchers can only fire on something within a 90 degree horizontal arc, can't lock on to a non Air Cruiser. Lateral Point Defense are side oriented ball turrets designed to engage in close air support against attempted boardings and outright hostile air power. These weapons are not air farming as any enemy pilot coming close enough to be fired upon is likely engaging in a hostile maneuver. Laterals have 270 degree arcs both horizontal and vertically.

Air Cruisers have Command Abilities, which range from Shield Boosting to Engine Overload:

Shield Boost: Directly drains NTU resources to replenish an amount of Shield HP
Shield Hardening: For a limited time the Air Cruiser will burn NTU instead of Shield HP when taking damage.
Engine Overload: Provides a massive engine power boost for a short time with a 20% risk of disabling one entirely (if two engines, each gets the 20% roll separately). 100% chance of damaging engines and reducing performance after the Overload is over.
Engine Cruise: Sustained High Output setting for engines to allow fast transit from one point to another. All functions (except Spawning) disabled for duration. Air Cruiser travels roughly 50% faster while engaged. Cruise disabled if Engines are damaged or disabled.

Air Cruisers are not fast. Even with upgraded engines, they are still slow ungainly behemoths. A Light Cruiser with One Standard Engine will top out at about 30 kph. A Battle Cruiser at 20. The Light Cruiser will take almost 60 seconds to go from 0 to 30 kph, the Battle Cruiser 300 seconds to get from 0 to 20 kph. Heavy Cruiser roughly halfway between at 25 kph max and 180 seconds acceleration time. This mean that engine upgrades are meaningful as a Mark V Engineering Module can cut that 300 second burn for a Battle Cruiser down to 100 seconds. The Light Cruiser similarly would drop to 20 seconds. It takes a Light Cruiser roughly 30 seconds to make a 180 degree turn. 180 seconds for the Battle Cruiser. Engine upgrades to improve this, but only 50% as much as they do for thrust thrust. Mark V Engines would have the Light Cruiser making a 180 degree turn in 15 seconds with 90 for the Battle Cruiser.

As with anything, the numbers used are examples, nothing is locked in stone. The Outfit Air Cruiser idea is an old one that has morphed many times over the years. But I believe this formula is going to be the final. It espouses the new values in PS 2, such as versatility and modularity. All while not dominating the ground game in a direct fashion.

I would need to know more about how resourcing might work in PS 2 to really get into cost:benefit.

The absolute rules any Airship in PlanetSide must follow:

1. Can't ruin the ground battle (see BFR).

2. Can't provide a overpowering advantage to the empire it belongs to (outfit oriented).

3. Can't be impervious to non Air Cruiser threats. (sabotage, concentrated fire from combined arms)

I suppose 2 is debatable, but those are my rules since breaking them leads to OPness.

Originally Posted by Baneblade View Post

Originally I planned to have these spawned in safety, but after further consideration I think it is better to have a contestable base to fight over. Enter the Shipyard, a wholly unremarkable structure save for its sheer size. A large underground HART style building spawns the air cruisers. There is also a Service Docking Tower.

When an air cruiser is freshly spawned it is extremely vulnerable to attack as all of its systems are offlined while it ascends to operating altitude over the span of several minutes.

The Service Docking Tower is required for refits, refueling, and repairing super critical damage. SCD is damage that cannot be repaired through traditional field methods. Systems that are damaged into an offline state often enough develop an unreliability RNG roll. This roll determines whether the system will be offline or online minute to minute. It will likely be 10% chance of offline.
Originally Posted by Alternate Idea I - 06/29/12
Alternative Design Compendium

This isn't intended to replace the OP, but rather to supplement it with further Outfit Air Cruiser possibilities.

This is a simpler and less progressive design philosophy, more intended to give side grade options and to emphasize crew capability more than outfit buying power. The original idea created a rift in capability that was not insurmountable, but at the same time far beyond significant.

Empire Specific Classes:

Tempest - NC
Babylon - TR
Scythe.. (damnit, my VS AC name was stolen for PS2!)
Hyperion - VS

Each can choose one specialization of the following:

Stealth Frigate

The Carrier Specialization Option is designed to be logistics focused with an expansive flight deck (should be large enough to handle five Galaxies or the future Lodestar comfortably and their cargos) and vehicle spawn capabilities (ground vehicles after Lodestars are introduced). The Carrier has only one forward heavy weapon mount and two medium weapon mounts, but has eight point defense mounts.

The Destroyer is far and above the ultimate in Air Cruiser aggression. It features three forward heavy weapon mounts, two rear heavy weapon mounts, four medium mounts, but only four point defense mounts.

The Battlecruiser is the middle weight in direct fire capability, but easily the heaviest defenses of the lot. It features two forward heavies, one rear heavy, six medium mounts, and six point defense mounts. It has a much stronger shield and heavier armor.

The Stealth Frigate is the antithesis of an overt airship. It has a full time cloaking bubble that is maintained as long as it is not taking damage or firing weapons (think PS1 AMS). The Frigate has no heavy weapons, but has four medium and four point defense mounts it can use in a pinch.

All Air Cruisers have outfit spawns, engine rooms, hangar decks (Carrier has the flight deck instead), observation lounges, bridges, and weapon decks (gunners access weapons on this deck).

Heavy Weapons are empire specific and generally represent the pinnacle of that empire's design philosophy.

Medium Weapons are basically MBT weapons repurposed for use in a naval capacity.

Point Defense Weapons can be empire specific, but Lightning weapons would also work.

Like the original idea, these are altitude locked and cannot attack ground targets directly. They also deploy infantry to the surface safely.

They are still outfit purchased, maintained, and crewed.
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Old 2014-01-04, 11:37 AM   [Ignore Me] #295
First Sergeant
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Originally Posted by Brogan View Post
Love the idea. It also be awsome if it could function as a command center, allowing leaders who stay behind in it a better view of a battlefield, like a war room where a leader can (with restrictions) be able to give orders based on the situation, such as marking priority targets.
As an outfit leader, I dislike the notion of hiding behind a wall of armor while your men are out there. Lead from the front, don't ask your members to do anything you wouldn't. Sure, I die a lot when I'm running ops. I get gunned down checking the map, chatting with command, or throwing up way points, but I'd rather be there on the front lines alongside my men.
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Old 2014-03-08, 01:08 PM   [Ignore Me] #296
Lieutenant General
Baneblade's Avatar
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Originally Posted by SGOniell View Post
As an outfit leader, I dislike the notion of hiding behind a wall of armor while your men are out there. Lead from the front, don't ask your members to do anything you wouldn't. Sure, I die a lot when I'm running ops. I get gunned down checking the map, chatting with command, or throwing up way points, but I'd rather be there on the front lines alongside my men.
Everyone has their own style. Some people are General George S. Patton, some are Lord Admiral Nelson, and others are merely channeling their inner Barack Obama from the golf course.
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Old 2014-04-26, 05:59 AM   [Ignore Me] #297
Lieutenant Colonel
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Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux


I love the concepts, I think I'm going to go to work on my take on it, which will be heavily influenced by the Bastion Fleet Carrier concept we've all seen:

The main way my version is going to differ is that it will be equipped with weapons for targeting other things aside from OACs, as each will be vulnerable to boarding and destruction from within so needs some protection. However, the weapon systems will be able to be destroyed individually.

To get into the swing of things I'm putting together the Bastion first, working my way from the front to the back, as I can reuse and edit elements of it for the other vessels, here's my work in progress:

And pretty much finished, with a bit of work needed on the rear gravity engines and potentially on the inside:

So here is the final version:

Started work on the Cruiser:

Similar armament but with no vehicle spawns, and an additional two heavy cannon on the top for tackling other vessels. Wondering about putting some anti capital missile launchers on the flanks. I also have a landing pad at the front and back, but I may get rid of the front one. However I like the idea of two entrances for attackers to board from. Perhaps an opening in the roof would work?

And here is my probably finished Cruiser:

Added some guided missile batteries on the sides that could only be fired at enemy vessels. Kept the entrance at the front to give attackers more options.


I am going to put in descriptions for each once I have finished the models, along with go back and put in drop pod launchers around the ships for infantry spawning in to use to disembark. I also want to make general plans showing the interior with spawn locations, generators and shields. I'll also put together a comparison shot to show scale, if my PC can handle it...


Here is the comparison image:

Last edited by DviddLeff; 2014-04-27 at 12:01 PM.
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Old 2014-04-27, 09:37 AM   [Ignore Me] #298
Lieutenant General
Baneblade's Avatar
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Very nice.
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Old 2014-05-09, 01:48 PM   [Ignore Me] #299
Lieutenant Colonel
DviddLeff's Avatar
Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

Right so I have done a fair bit more work on them to make them look cleaner and more interesting:

I am very tempted to make these the TR cruisers and make whole different ones for the VS and NC - NC I am thinking having converted civilian ships, perhaps even modular, while the VS would have their own sleek looking ships that are more vertical than horizontal as these are, to give them a unique style.
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Old 2014-05-15, 06:53 PM   [Ignore Me] #300
Lieutenant General
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Re: Outfit Air Cruisers Redux

I sort of imagined NC having ships that take after Terran ships in Freespace, bulky and awkward. VS somewhat like the Minbari from Babylon 5.
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