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rayruok

Railgun???

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I''m designing a tank game, and of course the art of war or weapons are a very evident factor. Now I am a Quake fan and I wanted to if its cool to add a railgun - not so much the gun, but how it looks - classic core and sprialing particles around it. But then I think back to C&C: TS(have to dig up that game again) where one of the units uses a railgun which looks the same - core and particles. Same with other weapons - rockets, plasma, ionbeams & cannons, flamethrowers, etc.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
have you taken your medication lately??

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Personally, I think it''s a bit odd looking to have the trail effects for guns. And when you think about it, it''s really a handicap to give away your positions like that.

Call me a stickler for realism and practicality, but I prefer games which gravitate more towards realism than "coolness". Often "coolness" is really stupid when you think about it. Take for example giant robot mechs. I mean think about it....why would you create a gargantuan beast like that that you could hit ten miles away? Why make it anthropomorphic, and instead make it huge hulking cybertank instead (tanks while perhaps not as manueverable would be far more well armored and due to engineering design could support more weapons and internal structure).

So for the "looks" factor of a gun, I''d actually think it''d just be neat to see a little glow around the end of the gun caused by some ionization of the air caused by the magnetic propulsion. No vapor trails, no spiraly effects...nothing to give away my position when I fire other than the noise (which despite some sci-fi claims would be very silent...hardly, the hypervelocity of the projectile is going to make a VERY loud crack when it fires). I actually think the sound effect of a railgun would be more interesting than its visual effect.

As for the looks of the gun itself, I''d think it''d look not too dissimilar from a regular gun. The main difference is that the barrel would probably be thicker than most to allow for the magnetic coils or rails (whichever you prefer). I think the weight of the gun would probably be about the same as well...what you lack in weight by getting rid of the firing chamber, you make up for in the magnetic rails and power core. The main advantage of railguns is that power is determined by how much power you can pump through the rail lines to accelerate the bullet. With conventional guns, you have to reinforce the firing chamber and/or make the barrel longer to give it more power...making the weapon more heavy. A long barrel on a railgun does two things...it will make it more accurate, and it can also accelerate the projectile faster (since it has more time in barrel to get propelled).

One thing I always wondered though...wouldn''t such high EMP discharges be harmful to not just electrical equipment, but humans too? You''d have to put some kind of shielding around the gun so that you don''t fry your own vehicle...or yourself.

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quote:
wouldn''t such high EMP discharges be harmful to not just electrical equipment, but humans too


Two notes:

(a) you dont talk of a high EMP discharge, not by far.
(b) the EM field of certain medical equipment (kernspin tomography) is much stronger. It has no long lasting effects.


Regards

Thomas Tomiczek
THONA Consulting Ltd.
(Microsoft MVP C#/.NET)

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where are modern weapons that could be classified as a rail gun, instead of a trail they give off a sonic boom.. and as for damage, they can go thought 5 feet of solid iron like it was butter!

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In realistic physics, there are two types of electromagnetic projectile weapons, the Rail, which is a linear accelarator, and the Gauss, which is sorts the same thing except with coiled wired to produce a dense magnetic field that points towards its center, and then it shuts off when the projectile reaches that center.

Now, heres the important thing, You are taking an object, a metal slug or something, accelerating it to a high speed, and ejecting it from whatever carried it. Provided you could supply enough energey to the system (which is where current technology seems to fail), the only other force to worry about is friction with the air. That noted, the only "special effect" that reality can offer is the muzzle flash, sparked by lots of air friction. In a vacumm, provided the whole thing would still work, you don''t get that flash.

All this said, the spiraling blue thing after firing the rail gun in Quake2 is cool, and I used it to figure out who was shooting at me and had the balls to miss. So, take it with a grain of salt, cool for real is the name of the game here.

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quote:
Original post by Dauntless
[...]And when you think about it, it''s really a handicap to give away your positions like that.[...]


I thik that is exactly the reason they put the trail in the quake games. They aren''t supposed to be tactical shooters. They want simple, fast action. Without the trail, a sniper could pick a good spot and ''camp'' it and pick off people for the rest of the map. By adding in the trail, they remove the ability to camp a spot with a sniper rifle. If you snipe, you get spotted and you have to keep moving, which makes sniping just as fast paced as the rest of the game.

Personally, I think it would look cool to have the core go fairly fast, and have the spiral go 1/2 to 3/4 the speed of the core. Instead of it shooting and then hanging in the air, make each one fade as it goes so only a certain length of each will be visible at any time. Add in a particle spray from the core and the leading edge of the spiral and you have yourself a nice effect =-)

----------
Almost typo-ified using Extrarius'' AUTOMATIC Typo Generator, but I decided to be nice =-)

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I think the problem with snipers/campers is that they are too easy and they shouldn''t be a faced pased type of character. I remember watching a documentary on the Marine Snipers that said sometimes it would take them several hours to move 100yards. Imagine that. Anyone who''s shot a real gun knows how hard it is to hit anything past 100m (for some people, past 50m). Not only are snipers cheap characters in most games because of how easy it is to hit anyone, but unfortunately game sound effects really don''t give you as good of a clue of where you are as it would in real life. In real life, a sniper will usually at most take 3 shots in one position and then scurry to find a new spot. The only time he won''t do this is if by moving it''ll be even more obvious where he is. In real life, our echo location skills are pretty good....usually only messed up in urban areas where sound can bounce off walls easily. That''s why snipers love urban areas...plenty of hiding areas and harder to echo-locate them.

When I played Operation Flashpoint, I could usually kill solitary prone Russian soldiers at 350m in about 3 shots, and I could usually kill running targets within about 8 shots. Sorry, but I''d have to be a world class sniper to do something like that with an M16. A 7.62mm round...maybe, but not 5.56mm. I didn''t have to factor in anything other than target lead if the target was moving. The only ballistic consideration was the inherent MOA (minutes of angle) of the rifle itself (which basically measures the consistency of shot groupings). If you haven''t played Operation Flashpoint...at 350m, a prone target is about half as tall as the letter o here and about as wide, and a standing target is about the size of the letter r on a 1280x1024 resolution screen. Now imagine hitting that without a scope and using your weapon sights (I actually switched to weapon view which gives the same view as if you were sighting down the barrel of the gun).

The end result is that everyone wants to be a sniper because they are so powerful. They are powerful in real life....but that''s only because very few people are good enough to be snipers. Also, in real life, you don''t have nice little crosshairs telling you where your gun is aiming (unless you have laser sights which is a little different). And looking through a high power scope truly does give you tunnel vision, and are hard to track very close moving targets. The farther the target is away, the easier it gets because movement doesn''t seem as exaggerated at great distances. But forget trying to use a scope against targets that are closer than 50m, and even at about 100m. Now, how many firefights in indoor style games take place at these ranges?

I remember playing a game called Twillight 2000 years ago, which was the first PPRPG that had a unique twist to gunfights. It wasn''t just how good of a shot you were, but also how courageous you were. Not only did you have to aim well, but you had to aim well while facing a hail of bullets yourself. If you failed the courage roll, your shots were going to go wild because you were more worried about keeping yourself alive than killing the other guy.

I''ve heard this argument come up before here...that a player shouldn''t be penalized for suppression fire. That the player should be smart enough to know not to duck his head out of cover or not go prone when he''s under fire. Well, let me tell ya, it''s God-honest instinct to get your ass under cover or go prone when you hear shots fired...and it takes willpower NOT to. I remember one time going out to a friend''s heavily wooded lot to do some target shooting. There were 4 of us, and me and one friend were ahead of the other two by a good 50 feet or so. Well, we were talking when we heard a crack of a gun shot behind us. We both immediately dropped prone as we heard a couple more shots. We were both like "WTF???!!!" and we actually heard some pellets raining down from the tree canopy. We then heard our other friends laughing...saying they just shot up in the air, and wanted to see our reaction. Needless to say, we weren''t amused and were pretty pissed off. But I''ll never forget that we both instantly dropped prone basically the same time we heard the shot.

I think it''d be cool to have a feature in a game that tests your courage. That makes you factor in not just your skill with pointing with a mouse, but also makes you contend with your courage under fire. This is where snipers really have to earn their merit..because not only do they have to be extrememly accurate, but they have to be incredibly brave too. Even tactical shooters don''t do snipers justice...and I''d like to see things like bullet-drop, windage, and breath control taken into account (try to shoot a gun after you''ve been hard sprinting for 30seconds).

I can already hear the arguments that games are about fun, and that players want to feel larger than life...like action heroes. But by doing this, it also creates game imbalances that are hard to get rid of (campers). And more to the point, I think people who think this way don''t see that it could be fun by doing it more realistically. I''d recommend anyone who doesn''t want "realistic" games to play a game of paintball, and a game of laser tag, then tell me which one was more fun. I defy anyone tell me that laser tag was more fun (which is why it''s a dead sport basically).


Sorry to get off topic, but I think the sniper/camper problem is a serious one and needs to be addressed by all FPS games. Railguns would make excellent sniper weapons for two reasons. First, there is no gas pushing the bullet, which means it will have more stability. Secondly, the tremendous velocities will mean the player needs less lead time against moving targets, and there will be less bullet-drop (since the bullet will have less time to fall or be affected by wind). Railguns also have a neat thing they could do too. By lowering the power requirements you can make railguns act like machine guns. Less damage but higher rates of fire when you don''t care about accuracy.

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Of course Dauntless, you also realize that most of the people who want the larger then life, superhero fun in a game are the consumers that out there. Admittedly some designers are that way to but the point is that if I want to sell a game to someone I''M going to have to cater to their desires. If I try to tell them that realism is more fun then fiction then they''re either going to go someplace else and try someone else''s game, or try mine but only give it a half hearted try.

And I''m not trying to be argumentative or anything but your last paragraph confused me. You say that Snipers/Campers are a problem then advocate the Railgun as being an invisible Sniper weapon. Like Extrarius said the trail is the manufacturers response to campers, (in Red Faction it had a trail and was slow to reload cause you could aim and fire through walls).

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quote:
Original post by TechnoHydra
Of course Dauntless, you also realize that most of the people who want the larger then life, superhero fun in a game are the consumers that out there. Admittedly some designers are that way to but the point is that if I want to sell a game to someone I''M going to have to cater to their desires. If I try to tell them that realism is more fun then fiction then they''re either going to go someplace else and try someone else''s game, or try mine but only give it a half hearted try.



How did you come to this conclusion? Most people said the same thing a few years ago before a little game called Rainbow Six came out...

quote:
Original post by Dauntless
Even tactical shooters don''t do snipers justice...and I''d like to see things like bullet-drop, windage, and breath control taken into account (try to shoot a gun after you''ve been hard sprinting for 30seconds).



I totally agree!

-Mike

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