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Replace Titan Jump-Portals with Tether-Jumping

Gizznitt Malikite
Agony Unleashed
Agony Empire
#41 - 2013-07-26 21:54:20 UTC  |  Edited by: Gizznitt Malikite
Ender Wiggan wrote:

Hi Gizznitt, sorry didn't have time to address this earlier. I accept your criticism. The end effect of this idea is meant to make logistics and force projection more difficult, dangerous and interesting (from the point of view that risks vs. travel time vs. cost must be weighed up). I believe that a discrepancy between jump range should definitely be maintained, but I agree that the range of carriers is probably too large to really make the idea work.

Thinking "out loud", what if we reversed the numbers. Carriers shorter jumpers, supers longer, titans longer still. All of them well below the current range of carriers. Then we have a new risk profile. You can respond with a large fleet to a threat at a distance, but if the people you're jumping on have an answer to your lone Titan, it's going to be in a lot of trouble.

In my head, I picture a fleet deployed via 25 carriers to be more robust than one deployed via 5 supers or via 1 Titan. Hence the ship that can project the furthest should be the 'weakest' (in terms of the strength of the "beach head").

We could have it such that ships tethering reduce the jump range of the jumper. For carriers the reduction is significant, less so for supers, even less so for Titans (but still a reduction).

As to the problem of carriers being able to cap up to jump-cap in their invulnerable timer. I didn't know that, and honestly, I think that in and of itself is a broken mechanic and shouldn't be possible. Having to refuel between jumps (and refueling haulers spawning at least 10 and probably 15km from the carrier) should band-aid the problem at least a little bit.

There is a subtle dichotomy between force projection and logistics.

Logistics is generally carried out by Jump Freighters (cargo) and Carriers (assembled ships), where goods are moved between a highsec or losec staging areas and a home base. While jump bridges are extremely useful here for individuals moving personal ships, in my limited experience, it's JF's and Carriers that do the heavy lifting for bringing in supplies to/from the home systems.

Force projection typically centers on moving from your home base to a battle front. Here, Titan Bridges and Jump bridges (and to a lesser extent BO Bridging) are key. These mechanics allow you to move a fleet to the enemy quickly and efficiently (and even bring them home again). Here, capital ships like Carriers, Dreads, and Supercaps enter the field of force projection as combat vessels that support / are supported by the subcap fleets.

IMHO, you want to limit force projection while encouraging logistics. Nerfing the range of carriers will severely hinder the ability of a small alliance to deploy to NPC regions like Venal, Fountain, Delve, or Curse, which are already difficult to deploy to because of the limited range on JF's. It's the longer range granted by carriers that opens up viable jump-travel routes to and from these regions. The "solution" I see is that your "tethered bridge" range should be different than your standard jump range. Example: having a carrier only able to tether a squad of subcaps 3.5 ly's, leave titans with their 7.8 ly range, and have supercarriers be somewhere in between. Then carriers can still play the role of logistics, as well as solid combat support (triage), while also providing a more balanced "force projection tether" ability.

All in all though, while this change essentially seems aimed at putting supercaps in harms way by making them the only viable tools for moving 1000 pilots to the battlefront, it is also greatly increasing the ability to hotdrop people in this game. Frankly, I'm not a fan of hotdrops in their current implementation, as they are pragmatically unscoutable, and thus very difficult to counter. Perhaps if cyno's had the often-proposed "spool up" timer, or some such limiting mechanic, your idea wouldn't create such a hotdrop atmosphere. Then again, putting lots of carriers in harms way is generally a good thing.
Nikk Narrel
Moonlit Bonsai
#42 - 2013-07-26 21:58:09 UTC
Bridging being limited to Titans is still something that restricts use to those who can afford these.

Yes, CCP freely admits there are way more in the game than they ever expected, but that doesn't mean they are often in the hands of troublemakers.

We need things like this in the hands of troublemakers.

Will it be used over titan bridging? Possibly, but the big powers don't have any problems bridging, as it is already. They may benefit from it some, but the guys unable to bridge at all can suddenly do it too.

It's that all or nothing difference which could have the greatest impact on play, I think.
Ender Wiggan
The Scope
Gallente Federation
#43 - 2013-07-26 23:13:11 UTC
@Giznitt: Yeah, it seems like we're thinking along the same lines. I appreciate your insight into the distinction between logistics and force-projection. When I'm talking about the logistics of force-projection, I guess I'm trying to make those particular logistics more of a factor in the assessment of how you're going to mobilise your fleet to attack or defend. We agree, it's too easy currently I think.

I think we also agree that the range while tether-jumping should be less than the range while normal jumping. I think this elegantly solves the potential carrier range problem, and also kind of intuitively makes sense. If a carrier has to haul much more mass with the same jump drive, surely it's not going to go as far.
Phoenix Naval Operations
Phoenix Naval Systems
#44 - 2013-07-27 05:27:22 UTC
So far I am loving the idea and think it would help to greatly solve force projection.
It has a few issues but they are carry overs from the current system so I don't really see it as a problem.

I am in agreement that other capitals should be able to tether their respective section of fleet.
I do really like the fuel cost idea in the OP.
You should not be able to tether other capitals.
Black-ops, I feel should still be able to operate the way it currently does. Or both!
Nikk Narrel
Moonlit Bonsai
#45 - 2013-07-27 14:03:10 UTC
Alternately, we could always consider the ships being jumped must bear a burden in exchange for this ability.

Such as a module or rig in order to moor / tether on the side of the ship linking to the carrier.

A high slot module would be most significant to many, being the same penalty cloaking ships must universally accept.
Midslot, still expensive to many ship fittings, but more bearable than a high.
Low slot, often a defensive or fitting compromise for power / cpu, this would either be trivial or breaking to certain fits.

Rigs: Losing a rig to place it, then losing the mooring / tether rig to swap back each time, can be frustratingly inconvenient, and may actually deter many from using it in some cases.
Ender Wiggan
The Scope
Gallente Federation
#46 - 2013-07-28 21:39:48 UTC
Bump to get more opinions.
Caldari State
#47 - 2013-07-28 23:04:40 UTC
I think it's an outstanding idea. +1 Big smile
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