What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

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donm61873
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What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby donm61873 » Fri Apr 17, 2015 9:29 pm

So it's April 2015... Is the best we've got for Mongoose starship designs basically a few spreadsheets?

Because I'll own up that I really do not like the Zhodani designs in that book, and am now at the point where I'd like the Droyne designs to be better.

Which means I need to first fix my tools. So what do people use for starship design?

(and yes, my FB question came back with answers like "by hand"...)
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby Reynard » Fri Apr 17, 2015 10:23 pm

Paper, pencil and calculator. Traveller ship designs are not... rocket science.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby phavoc » Fri Apr 17, 2015 11:39 pm

I have a few different excel sheets for up to 2000 ton MGT spacecraft, as well as a small craft sheet I found. I have seen one out there for T5.

The biggest problem is that the publishers won't come out and support what people are willing to put out there.

And yeah, it's pencil and paper... but why is it so many are frigging built wrong?? Especially the ones from the publishers? Tools make your job easier. Sure, it's easy to dig a hole with a shovel, but why not use a backhoe to do it faster?
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby Infojunky » Sat Apr 18, 2015 12:24 am

Google Docs.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Sat Apr 18, 2015 4:59 am

Handwaving.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby simonh » Sat Apr 18, 2015 8:53 am

donm61873 wrote:So it's April 2015... Is the best we've got for Mongoose starship designs basically a few spreadsheets?
Mongoose has explicitly prohibited the development of third party software for Mongoose Traveller in their licences, free or not. Technically you can base software on the material in the SDK as its published under the OGL, which allows for implementation in software, but if you do that you cannot mention Traveller or Traveller compatibility.

I completely understand this stance, at some point they want to produce their own software for the game. For me it's no big deal, I just use the excellent CT ship design apps out there, but the MGT rules in play. It's not as if the conversion is all that hard.

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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby Sevain » Sat Apr 18, 2015 11:17 am

What would people look for in a design tool anyway? As stated, the ship design process is not that complicated as long as you ignore things like the 5% cost reduction per TL from High Guard.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby Tom Kalbfus » Sat Apr 18, 2015 12:38 pm

Sevain wrote:What would people look for in a design tool anyway? As stated, the ship design process is not that complicated as long as you ignore things like the 5% cost reduction per TL from High Guard.
Would you like to walk through a starship, not just see its floor plans but what it looks like from the inside?
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby simonh » Sat Apr 18, 2015 1:19 pm

For other versions of Traveller there are High Guard Shipyard by Andrea Vallance.

http://www.downport.com/amv/software/hgs.html

More recently there's a web too called the Classic Traveller Ship Builder by Matt in Beta:

https://tca-2014-12.herokuapp.com/

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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby F33D » Sat Apr 18, 2015 3:22 pm

I was thinking. If one did a fancy spreadsheet based on the SRD's, they could sell them up on DriveThruRpg...
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby Annatar Giftbringer » Sat Apr 18, 2015 7:36 pm

What's wrong with the Zhodani ships? I mean, aside from the fact that several of them completely lack deckplan info I think they're fine :) (seriously, I'd be very happy if that little detail got fixed...)

Oh and the layout/design works very well, with clear plans, three-way drawings and a 'photo'.

The decks are a bit "empty" or low on detail, sure, and some furniture and stuff would be welcome, but the empty approach means it's easy for me to customize the lite details.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby donm61873 » Sat Apr 18, 2015 10:06 pm

Annatar Giftbringer wrote:What's wrong with the Zhodani ships? I mean, aside from the fact that several of them completely lack deckplan info I think they're fine :) (seriously, I'd be very happy if that little detail got fixed...)

Oh and the layout/design works very well, with clear plans, three-way drawings and a 'photo'.

The decks are a bit "empty" or low on detail, sure, and some furniture and stuff would be welcome, but the empty approach means it's easy for me to customize the lite details.
I've collected a list of complaints...
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Sat Apr 18, 2015 10:58 pm

simonh wrote:For other versions of Traveller there are High Guard Shipyard by Andrea Vallance.

http://www.downport.com/amv/software/hgs.html
PASCAL? Oh my.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby Nobby-W » Mon Apr 20, 2015 10:20 am

ShawnDriscoll wrote:
simonh wrote:For other versions of Traveller there are High Guard Shipyard by Andrea Vallance.

http://www.downport.com/amv/software/hgs.html
PASCAL? Oh my.
Object Pascal from Delphi. More like a cleaned up version of C++ skinned with Pascal syntax.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby donm61873 » Mon Apr 20, 2015 2:39 pm

Hey, someone had to program with it. In the early 90s, that was pretty state of the art.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Tue Apr 21, 2015 1:39 am

ZX81 BASIC. Still the best programming platform for Traveller.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby donm61873 » Tue Apr 21, 2015 2:35 am

ShawnDriscoll wrote:ZX81 BASIC. Still the best programming platform for Traveller.
You can't exactly share your efforts with that.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby hiro » Tue Apr 21, 2015 2:39 am

Don, given your role as FFE minion, can you shed on any light as to whether or not your enquiry is because FFE are looking to publish software tools for Traveller titles please?
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby GypsyComet » Tue Apr 21, 2015 2:42 am

If you can think in BASIC, then Pascal is not really a stretch. Unless, of course, all the modern development environments suck. Which they do. There is a reason the modern fan coding crowd is more heavily into scripting languages.

The irony of BASIC being a scripting language by modern definitions is not lost on me.
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Re: What is the state of the art for starship design tools?

Postby donm61873 » Tue Apr 21, 2015 2:51 am

hiro wrote:Don, given your role as FFE minion, can you shed on any light as to whether or not your enquiry is because FFE are looking to publish software tools for Traveller titles please?
My inquiry is because I'm painfully aware of the problems with the Zhodani ship designs, and I don't want to repeat my mistakes with Droyne designs. It has nothing to do with FFE (sorry).
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