An explanation for the mysteries of life. 

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Q: How the hell does armor work?

A: Thanks for asking! I explained this elsewhere, so instead of typing it all over again, I'll just copy and past my brilliance here with a few additions thrown in.

I get it now, the first stat is constant (hit points), the second stat is purely distance as described by the extreme forward and rear end of the ship, and the third is based on how many degrees the section is from 0 degrees (0 degrees is straight ahead).

So, if your ship is an even 200 pixels long, with 100 forward, 100 aft, if you had a section at 50,0 (x,y) pixels forward, it would get a 1/4 max HP bonus, if it were -50,0, it would still get the same bonus. If it were 1 pixel forward from the middle of the ship (1,0), or maybe 0,0, as in no pixels forward or back, it would get a full 1/2 max HP bonus. A section at 100,0 would get no distance bonus. This means it pays to have a small section just forward or rearward of any section that would otherwise be at the extreme aft or bow ends of the ship.

For the third stat, if you placed a hull part at 0,10 (x,y), that means the section gets the full distance bonus and half the angle bonus, 1/4, because the part is 90 degrees to the hull. At 10,0, it would be at 0 degrees and get the full angle bonus of 1/2. At -100,1, lets pretend that puts the hull piece at 179 degrees, so the bonus 0.6% of 1/2 your total HP. This means it pays to have sections as close to the center-line of the ship as possible, while still forward of the ship's command section's center.

Q: How the hell do deflectors work.

A: It turns out deflectors work by replacing the HP lost to weapons fire, not by stopping the damage in the first place. If your ship's total HP are lower than the strongest weapon to hit you, the deflectors can't cure the damage completely, so you'll take damage.  As a bad example, they work a bit like very fast NanoMatrixes.