Archive through September 29, 2011

Star Fleet Universe Discussion Board: Starline 2500 Miniatures: Gorn Ships: Making the HDD, CS, CM different: Archive through September 29, 2011
By Gary Carney (Nerroth) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 01:44 am: Edit

Oh, I like that...

The centre hull looks a bit incongruous if left "plain" compared to the fancied-up bubbles, though. Maybe it (and the wings) should have some sort of pattern, too?

By Xander Fulton (Dderidex) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 01:47 am: Edit

Yeah, you'd need to do something with the hull, for sure. And the warp engines really would need some kind of...grilles on them or something. Vents. Something, I dunno, to give them some 'flair'.

But I was just concentrating on tinkering with the bubbles, since those are definitely the most prominent feature of a Gorn ship, and so definitely need the most eye-catching change.

By Xander Fulton (Dderidex) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 01:51 am: Edit

FWIW, if I had an ideal 3d model from it - and I know this would be TREMENDOUSLY difficult (much more so than adding a simple grid into the hull, which most programs can handle via a trivial displacement map) - the 'war' series ships would have the hexagonal pattern on their hull...in tiles.

That is, the bubbles would still be bubbles, and they'd still be "round" - more or less - but rather than the smoothly curving surfaces we are familiar with in the pre-war designs, each hexagon 'facet' would be completely flat in itself. The "curve" would simply be from each facet placed at a slightly different, graduated, angle.

That would look sick cool, and clearly visually distinguish the rapidly-produced "war"-series ships from the more elegant exploration vessels of the pre-war period.

But it really would take a LOT more work in a 3d program to do...at least, of those I've worked with...

By Gary Carney (Nerroth) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 01:57 am: Edit

It would be somewhat ironic if the Gorn fleet, through having such a stark divide between the "old" and "new" hulls, ended up with a more prominent split between those interested in collecting one or another style of ship; just like those who may prefer to stick with Eagles, Kestrels or Hawks.

(I could definitely see that happening here, if there were to be such a stark contrast between the pre-war hulls and the later war classes.)

By Xander Fulton (Dderidex) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 02:00 am: Edit

Why not, though? I mean, everyone else has very distinct 'generations' of ships. I've certainly played with folks who only like flying D6 or D7 Klingon ships, or the 'Franz Joseph' Federation ships.

Nothing wrong with that.

The Gorn also have a clean break in their ship series...their pre-war designs (especially pre-refit) are pale shadows of the fearsome death platforms the war-series ships are. Yet, visually...we've always had to suffer with the same models.

If this is a chance to fix that...heck, I'm all for it!

By Gary Carney (Nerroth) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 02:12 am: Edit

You make a fair point.

Here's a thought; what of the "scales" were made that bit different depending on which class they were used for? One could say that the patterns and shapes of the "hard-scale" tiles were intended to be different, to represent each of the three Gorn species; and perhaps one of the smaller "war" hulls could even have a more "soft-scale" look, in honour of the Skoleans.

That last one in particular could show the influence on Gorn engineering aesthetics of contact with the Federation, and perhaps be an officially-sanctioned homage to the many "volunteer" citizens of Skoleos who served "across the border" in the Confederation Navy. (Or to take a more cynical approach, it could be a side-effect of some engineering constraint for such-and-such a class that happened to give its hull a more soft-scale-y look, to which some opportunistic Gorn diplomat decided to apply the "Skolean Solidarity" moniker after the fact.)


Also, if there were to be such a tile-based method for building the war hulls on the cheap, perhaps that very process might make stretching the bubbles out more impractical than it is for the smooth-hulled pre-war ships? (It might be relatively easy to cut a BC's bubbles in half to make a BCH, but perhaps there could be some sort of structural issues the tiles of a CM cause which prevents one from creating a CMH out of it?) If so, that could help make sure the older hulls still have a role to play in the mid-war Gorn fleet, since they would be needed to facilitate certain key conversions.

By Xander Fulton (Dderidex) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 02:56 am: Edit

Not sure if this helps provide any context to the previous attempt, but I threw some more textures on the previous Gorn ship attempt, so that the bubbles don't stand out as badly.

It's more consistent looking, now, but do keep in mind it's just a draft to show that 'hexagon tiled bubbles with a split in half could look pretty cool'.

Example drawing

By Charles Chapel (Ctchapel) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 03:25 am: Edit

I like the hex scales. If you make the edge band a flat surface and not a groove then the hexes could wrap around smoothly.

The grooves are okay, but what do they do?

By Will McCammon (Djdood) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 03:31 am: Edit

The grooves are similar to what I was going to draw for my "trenched-bubble-edge" concept, although I was going to make them taller.

I talked myself out of even proposing that particular concept, because it would force the phasers to sit in the trench, restricting their arcs. The restriction would mostly be in vertical directions not-modeled in SFU games, but still, it didn't make engineering sense so I dumped it.

By Xander Fulton (Dderidex) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 03:45 am: Edit

The grooves...uhhh...protect the phaser emitters from various floating space flotsam and jetsam?

By Galen Davenport (Aranier) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 06:52 am: Edit

I was thinking make the band an octagon with the bubbles come to the flat sides and the corners sticking out.

By Galen Davenport (Aranier) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 06:53 am: Edit

I like Xander's equatorial trench for the band.

By A. David Merritt (Adm) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 08:38 am: Edit

As a reminder on hull pattering, the cover of P6 had hull pattering on the Gorn unit displayed.

By Mike Dowd (Duellist_69) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 09:33 am: Edit

I actually *like* hex-tiled shield grids... it gives the Gorn something unique.

By John F. Reaves III (Halden) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 09:41 am: Edit

The tiles certainly liven up the hulls.

By Patrick H. Dillman (Patrick) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 10:27 am: Edit

Dumb the trench, keep the hextiles for the war classes. Also think Galen Davenport's idea has merit.

By Donovan A Willett (Ravenhull) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 10:39 am: Edit

I'm still thinking of having perpendicular sides, a'la the Starline 2400 BCX model, for the 'war' designs. Gives it a more 'utiltarian' and 'built in a hurry' look than the classic curved edges on older ships.

As for the centerline torps, a lump on either the bottom or top of the center hull might work for that. Maybe both, with an S-torp firing from top and bottom, but that would make the R-torp CS look a bit odd, so probably have both S-torps in the same structure.

By Loren Knight (Loren) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 10:55 am: Edit

I like the equatorial trench idea and the phasers can just be on mounts that extend back out even with the edge of the hull (they don't have to sit in).

Indeed, one might imagine that they extend out on Red Alert!

By Mike Novean (Blackdice) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 11:18 am: Edit

Played around with some concepts for different bubble designs.

You can see them on flickr at Gorn Bubble Concepts.

Tried to incorporate SVC's octagon idea into the band.

Working on adding some textures to the bubbles and will be uploading those as I go.

By Will McCammon (Djdood) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 11:37 am: Edit

The "banded" bubble concept on my drawings (#2) has more thickness that what you used in yours. It's more like what you called a "ringed" bubble, but not quite as thick. I also kept the curve on my band (it's the same shape as the main bubble, just at a larger size, then chopped-off top and bottom).

I was going for giving it just a bit of a step (evoking the BDX mini just a little bit). My original inspiration for it came from the torpedo blisters that were added to wet-Navy ships in the WW1/WW2 era.

By Steve Cole (Stevecole) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 11:45 am: Edit

I really dislike the smaller fatter bubbles and won't even consider them.

Pity I'm not enough of an artist to show you guys what I intended the octagons to be. Sigh.

I told Sandrine to go with the bands and to decorate them as she will. However, she told me those morning that Rob is doing the Gorns, not Sandrine.

By Xander Fulton (Dderidex) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 11:57 am: Edit

@SVC - what about the tiled/trenched bubbles? Something vaguely like this hastily-drawn idea? Any worth chasing that rabbit down a hole any further?

By Damon Robert Anderson (Rihan704) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 12:10 pm: Edit

Man, those scale drawings make for an evil-looking Gorn.

Reminds me of SFB playing. When the Gorn player showed up, you just knew it was going to be a, "pack a sack lunch," kind of fight. Big, beefy ships with a ton of firepower. Especially when they could get away with bringing CMs and BCHs. The look of those drawings brings back that sinking feeling.

This fight is not going to be easy, it is not going to be short, and you'd better bring your 'A' game.

Perfect for the war designs. The soft bubbles are all namby-pamby, pencil-pusher, Barneys suitable for sub-light Rommies. These designs show the realization that the Gorn were now in a shooting war.

By Mike Novean (Blackdice) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 12:17 pm: Edit

I just added a comparison picture and a profile of different bubble types.

All of the bubbles are the same overall height and diameter. The changes are changing the curves on top and bottom and adding a vertical section.

By Dal Downing Rambler (3deez) on Thursday, September 29, 2011 - 01:40 pm: Edit

Still thinking on this. I think in addition to the " band an trench" it would be nice to increase the bubble height on the old ships and go flatter like the current BC model on the war builds.

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