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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2020 5:38 pm
  

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It's been a while since I last seriously posted and this has probably been brought up (more than once) in that time. However I'm just about to begin a small RT game with the roommates and I wanted to bounce a few ideas off you wonderful folks.

Beta's as statted and even in the anime are a huge waste of resources and poorly designed to provide support to the Alpha in most ways, but I love the mecha and want to see it better used so here we go.

Changes I consider standard:
Almost all Betas are piloted, this gives any A/B pairing a huge improvement in capability over the original concept. Pilot/Gunner teams when linked.

Chest missiles/MM-20 and MM-16 launchers are badly designed for use in flight and while linked. I combined both together so each side has a shared supply of missiles for use in the 10 tube and the 8 tube launchers.

EU-14s, upgraded the burst fire damage by one die size like I do with the EU-13. I also use a tripled "effective" range on mecha lasers in space.

Forearm Pulse Beam Cannons...??? Damn, what a mess these "heavy weapons" are as statted. Short range and poor relative damage doesn't make sense to me. Upped the number of dice in each tube and a three tube blast does damage equal to the IWS-40 on the Ajax.

Wing hard points, I go with 2 instead of 3 but each is a rough match for the VF-1's wing mounts and can carry a launch tree with 3 medium range missiles per mount (up to 6 MRMs total per wing) or a total of 3 long range missiles per wing. Various MLOPs are also available. Also working on some ideas for the wing multi weapon pods from Strike Force in 1st Ed.

The ordinance bay I keep the same.

Considered upgrade:
The over sized, flip up sensor pod atop the Beta, with the stats it has doesn't make sense. My thought is to move the Beta's regular sensors to its nose and sensor head while the flip up module becomes modular and has a few options. First is the missile module with 6 medium range missiles. The second would be the sensor option, while it still looks like the missile module it gives the Beta sensor abilities like the Catseye and 6 electronic warfare pods to create the recon Beta.

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:32 pm
  

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Do you have access to the "original" version of the Beta in the old Invid Invasion or Robotech II: The Sentinels? If so, I would just use the older version of the mecha. It is a bit lower on the MDC side, but the weapons used have far less restrictions and make a bit more sense.

If you don't have access to those books, the changes you made work well. I am not really sure why those forearm weapons even exist. Having the triple EU-14's work in all three modes would be a better use of the space.

-STS

_________________
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A man's rights rest in three boxes. The ballot box, jury box and the cartridge box - Frederick Douglass
I am a firm believer that men with guns can solve any problem - Inscriptus
Any system in which the most populated areas have the most political power, creates an incentive for areas that want power to increase their population - Killer Cyborg


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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2020 11:05 pm
  

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slade the sniper wrote:
Do you have access to the "original" version of the Beta in the old Invid Invasion or Robotech II: The Sentinels? If so, I would just use the older version of the mecha. It is a bit lower on the MDC side, but the weapons used have far less restrictions and make a bit more sense.

If you don't have access to those books, the changes you made work well. I am not really sure why those forearm weapons even exist. Having the triple EU-14's work in all three modes would be a better use of the space.

-STS


I do have it. I still find that Beta "off model" and a bit flawed though I've obviously borrowed some ideas from it for my Beta upgrade.

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2020 12:48 am
  

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Pouncer wrote:
Beta's as statted and even in the anime are a huge waste of resources and poorly designed to provide support to the Alpha in most ways, [...]

Eh, yeah… it’s mostly unfixable, since all but a few of the issues stem from the design having been slapped together by MOSPEADA’s creators to meet the demands of the show’s toy partner. The original design didn’t transform and wasn’t even manned (or armed).



Pouncer wrote:
Almost all Betas are piloted, this gives any A/B pairing a huge improvement in capability over the original concept. Pilot/Gunner teams when linked.

Robotech’s official setting’s take is the opposite… that the Beta is almost never manned. It’s mostly treated like a (very expensive and complicated) disposable booster or FAST Pack. Most of the Beta’s weapons aren’t properly accessible when docked, so there’s not a lot for the pilot in the Beta to do. There’s also no way for the Beta’s pilot to embark or disembark while docked, as the internal crawlspace is cut off while the cockpit is folded down.



Pouncer wrote:
Chest missiles/MM-20 and MM-16 launchers are badly designed for use in flight and while linked. I combined both together so each side has a shared supply of missiles for use in the 10 tube and the 8 tube launchers.

Fun fact… the 10-tube launchers on the front of the chest are an animation error. The original designer’s notes and production line art show that all of the aircraft’s missiles are launched via the pop-up 8-tube launchers, each of which holds 24 missiles.



Pouncer wrote:
EU-14s, upgraded the burst fire damage by one die size like I do with the EU-13. I also use a tripled "effective" range on mecha lasers in space.

If you did the same to the gunpods, sure… RT’s assertion has often been that they’re meant to be the same weapons system. They were actually 30mm solid-ammo rotary cannons in the line art and animation. The firepower upgrades aren’t really necessary against the Invid, given that they’re armored like a cream slice.



Pouncer wrote:
Wing hard points, I go with 2 instead of 3 but each is a rough match for the VF-1's wing mounts and can carry a launch tree with 3 medium range missiles per mount (up to 6 MRMs total per wing) or a total of 3 long range missiles per wing. Various MLOPs are also available. Also working on some ideas for the wing multi weapon pods from Strike Force in 1st Ed.

There’s really not enough wing area for the aircraft to feasibly have pylon-mounted ordnance… I’ve always removed them because they’re not something the original designers intended for the aircraft to have, and are never used in any official media. They ended up in the Robotech spec because the fan-fiction writers who compiled the info substituted their guesses based on promotional art from hobby magazines for official info.



Pouncer wrote:
Considered upgrade:
The over sized, flip up sensor pod atop the Beta, with the stats it has doesn't make sense. My thought is to move the Beta's regular sensors to its nose and sensor head while the flip up module becomes modular and has a few options. First is the missile module with 6 medium range missiles. The second would be the sensor option, while it still looks like the missile module it gives the Beta sensor abilities like the Catseye and 6 electronic warfare pods to create the recon Beta.

Per the original creators, it’s actually supposed to be a weapons system… something called a “laser bomb launcher”. No idea what that actually means tho, because it was never used in the animation and the line art has no details of how it would’ve been animated.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2020 1:12 am
  

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My late service upgrade to the Beta is that additional upgrade to the Alpha's systems that allow the Beta to "Fully Transform" while attached to an Alpha battloid. There is no reason I can see why the Beta Arms cannot be deployed when connected to an Alpha, granting the Alpha use of those heavy arm guns.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:25 am
  

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Pouncer wrote:
EU-14s, upgraded the burst fire damage by one die size like I do with the EU-13. I also use a tripled "effective" range on mecha lasers in space.

A lot of NG/TRM mecha primary guns suffer in this way requiring one to either up the number of dice rolled or increase the die-size. Going only one-die-size up doesn't IMHO result in the fast paced results of 1E, you almost have to double the die-code (ie D4=D8, D6=D12) to get close to the results. Of course the alternative is to simply lower the MDC of their enemies.

Pouncer wrote:
Forearm Pulse Beam Cannons...??? Damn, what a mess these "heavy weapons" are as statted. Short range and poor relative damage doesn't make sense to me. Upped the number of dice in each tube and a three tube blast does damage equal to the IWS-40 on the Ajax.

Since all 3 barrels fire together I'd just treat them as EU-14s to simplify things, otherwise the battloid mode doesn't have the same gun range as other Battloids wielding hand-held gunpods.

slade the sniper wrote:
. I am not really sure why those forearm weapons even exist. Having the triple EU-14's work in all three modes would be a better use of the space.

The forearm weapons exists due to placement of the the EU-14s in Battloid mode would be the most likely explanation. Yes better placement of the EU-14s might go a long way toward negating the need, but the forearm placement itself does allow for better firing arcs (use of the arm) and could THEORETICALLY allow one to fire toward the rear in F/G modes (it never does, but then nothing is blocking the guns from firing).

Seto wrote:
Robotech’s official setting’s take is the opposite… that the Beta is almost never manned. It’s mostly treated like a (very expensive and complicated) disposable booster or FAST Pack. Most of the Beta’s weapons aren’t properly accessible when docked, so there’s not a lot for the pilot in the Beta to do. There’s also no way for the Beta’s pilot to embark or disembark while docked, as the internal crawlspace is cut off while the cockpit is folded down.

Re: Pilot accessibility
We are shown two ways for a crew-person to board a docked A/B in the animation in Ep83, one is up the side chutes for the bomb bay (obviously they have to be clear) but also when Marlene/Ariel boards the Beta section prior to take off. Neither are practical for accessibility from the Horizon-T type docking station, but more conventional parking stations on a deck would be practical for the Marlene/Ariel example.

Also in Ep83, Rand is able to access the pilot station prior to separation.

RE: 2-station useability
That really depends on the configuration of the Beta, and if the Beta can access the Alpha's weapon systems like the Alpha can access the Betas. It would also help if the Beta was using Wing Stations (more available missiles), forearm guns (rear firing arc), leg EU-14s (would have to have a clear firing path), and a more sensible MM-20/16 configuration than what is stated in the 2E RPG.

Seto wrote:
Per the original creators, it’s actually supposed to be a weapons system… something called a “laser bomb launcher”. No idea what that actually means tho, because it was never used in the animation and the line art has no details of how it would’ve been animated.

3 idea come to mind for RPG Purposes:
1. treat it as a stock missile (or stock missile with the next category up warhead)
2. treat it as an X-Ray Laser (see Rifts Mutants In Orbit, the laser is powered by the detonation of a nuclear bomb), each tube has one shot in it
3. treat it as using a scaled up version of Lunk's "eat laser" while firing missiles which could be explained in the RPG as him firing a missile with the warhead as something akin to the Wilk's Bee Hive Laser Grenade (see Rifts New West)


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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:19 pm
  

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ShadowLogan wrote:
Seto wrote:
Robotech’s official setting’s take is the opposite… that the Beta is almost never manned. It’s mostly treated like a (very expensive and complicated) disposable booster or FAST Pack. Most of the Beta’s weapons aren’t properly accessible when docked, so there’s not a lot for the pilot in the Beta to do. There’s also no way for the Beta’s pilot to embark or disembark while docked, as the internal crawlspace is cut off while the cockpit is folded down.

Re: Pilot accessibility
We are shown two ways for a crew-person to board a docked A/B in the animation in Ep83, one is up the side chutes for the bomb bay (obviously they have to be clear) but also when Marlene/Ariel boards the Beta section prior to take off. Neither are practical for accessibility from the Horizon-T type docking station, but more conventional parking stations on a deck would be practical for the Marlene/Ariel example.

That's different... the cockpit isn't accessible when the two aircraft are docked, because it's folded down and cut off from the embarkation hatch's ladder. You can absolutely still get into the crawlspace inside the bomb bay via the bomb bay doors once the bay is empty, but all that'll get you is into the bomb bay crawlspace... not the cockpit.



ShadowLogan wrote:
Seto wrote:
Per the original creators, it’s actually supposed to be a weapons system… something called a “laser bomb launcher”. No idea what that actually means tho, because it was never used in the animation and the line art has no details of how it would’ve been animated.

3 idea come to mind for RPG Purposes:
1. treat it as a stock missile (or stock missile with the next category up warhead)
2. treat it as an X-Ray Laser (see Rifts Mutants In Orbit, the laser is powered by the detonation of a nuclear bomb), each tube has one shot in it
3. treat it as using a scaled up version of Lunk's "eat laser" while firing missiles which could be explained in the RPG as him firing a missile with the warhead as something akin to the Wilk's Bee Hive Laser Grenade (see Rifts New West)

My suspicion has been that it's a human reproduction of the Inbit/Invid's laser weaponry.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:58 pm
  

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Seto Kaiba wrote:
ShadowLogan wrote:
Seto wrote:
My suspicion has been that it's a human reproduction of the Inbit/Invid's laser weaponry.


Oh my gosh. They do sort of look like Invid plasma ejector nozzles.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2020 10:07 pm
  

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Seto Kaiba wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
Beta's as statted and even in the anime are a huge waste of resources and poorly designed to provide support to the Alpha in most ways, [...]

Eh, yeah… it’s mostly unfixable, since all but a few of the issues stem from the design having been slapped together by MOSPEADA’s creators to meet the demands of the show’s toy partner. The original design didn’t transform and wasn’t even manned (or armed).


That's the challenge and why I'll enjoy working on it.

Robotech unmanned: Treatment in both versions of the show bothers me, I can understand its "slapdash" nature and how it evolved during the original production but I've got some time to burn right now to do better. As for there being no way for the pilot to access the cockpit with the nose folded, either there must be a way or they just ignored that during the original production because it does happen in the anime, they just don't show us how. As for entry from the top while connected I've borrowed from the VF-1 with the sensor head flipping up to allow pilot access.

Chest launchers: I've seen you note that before, and honestly there's no room in the chest pods for both weapons, as shown, to co-exist. The 10 packs would have to be moved down a bit or forward into the triangular sections. But I'm keeping the 10s in order to give the Beta a bit of "beef" to keep it relevant.

Wing hard points: I'm okay with keeping those even with the small wings. The modern missiles are a bit smaller and allow for smaller mounts (save for those beasts mounted on the Conbat). Besides, if we're going to apply that level of engineering logic, the veritechs should come apart due to stress when they try to transform at jet speeds, tumble out of control or both.

Upper pod: "Laser bombs" are probably meant to be some sort of precision guided missiles. I'm going to go with medium range missiles or alternately an improved sensor pod with the range of the Catseye and the upgrades of the newer Defender Destroid.

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2020 10:22 pm
  

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ShadowLogan wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
EU-14s, upgraded the burst fire damage by one die size like I do with the EU-13. I also use a tripled "effective" range on mecha lasers in space.

A lot of NG/TRM mecha primary guns suffer in this way requiring one to either up the number of dice rolled or increase the die-size. Going only one-die-size up doesn't IMHO result in the fast paced results of 1E, you almost have to double the die-code (ie D4=D8, D6=D12) to get close to the results. Of course the alternative is to simply lower the MDC of their enemies.


I considered that, but I wanted to keep the EU-13 and 14 at about half of the damage of the much more monstrous GU-11 off the VF-1. Much smaller weapons that don't hurl anywhere near as many shots at the target (in high caliber rounds). However the I did make the Destablizer on the Shadow fighter the same number of dice, but one step smaller that that of the GU-11 (nearly there but with a special effect against force fields).

ShadowLogan wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
Forearm Pulse Beam Cannons...??? Damn, what a mess these "heavy weapons" are as statted. Short range and poor relative damage doesn't make sense to me. Upped the number of dice in each tube and a three tube blast does damage equal to the IWS-40 on the Ajax.

Since all 3 barrels fire together I'd just treat them as EU-14s to simplify things, otherwise the battloid mode doesn't have the same gun range as other Battloids wielding hand-held gunpods.


I kept them as non burst weapons to get the improved bonuses to hit. It was either that or replace each with 3 stripped down, internalized EP-20s off of the Logan. Hmmm... maybe that would be a better idea. :)

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:19 am
  

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Pouncer wrote:
Upper pod: "Laser bombs" are probably meant to be some sort of precision guided missiles. I'm going to go with medium range missiles or alternately an improved sensor pod with the range of the Catseye and the upgrades of the newer Defender Destroid.

-POUNCER

Maybe it is supposed to be Laser Guided Bombs...? Medium warhead, gravity bombs, +3 to hit?

-STS

_________________
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A man's rights rest in three boxes. The ballot box, jury box and the cartridge box - Frederick Douglass
I am a firm believer that men with guns can solve any problem - Inscriptus
Any system in which the most populated areas have the most political power, creates an incentive for areas that want power to increase their population - Killer Cyborg


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2020 10:36 am
  

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Can we do it better? Yeah. Reinsert the VF-1 series with it's multitude of options and ditch the alpha and beta altogether :P

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2020 11:19 am
  

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Seto wrote:
That's different... the cockpit isn't accessible when the two aircraft are docked, because it's folded down and cut off from the embarkation hatch's ladder. You can absolutely still get into the crawlspace inside the bomb bay via the bomb bay doors once the bay is empty, but all that'll get you is into the bomb bay crawlspace... not the cockpit.

Ep83 all time codes are approx, but the sequence is spot on
@16:20 Annie/Rand get hoisted up
@16:34 Rand takes a seat in the Beta Cockpit (we can see various controls and monitors)
@16:38 Rand operates a control in the cockpit while seated
@16:40 Annie and Marlenee are seated in the bomb bay
@16:48 Combiner seperates into component Alpha and Beta sections

Rand is clearly shown to be in the cockpit of the mecha x2 before seperation. This means either:
A. the cockpit is accessible
B. Rand (or Annie) has previously undisclosed Superpowers
C. Marlene/Ariel's teleportation power was in use and known to the group
D. They have teleportation tech built into the mecha
E. Production Error (not really an animation error, more of a story error)

Option A makdes the most sense for both Robotech and Mospeada given E can be ruled out given... The Lineart doesn't rule it out, at least what lineart I could find (Gears Online, Tread images #10 and #23 gif format). There is an "X-Ray" shot of the cockpit in separated Fighter/Guardian Modes overlayed with position in docked/Battloid Modes that shows the seat's orientation doesn't change relative to the rest of the vehicle. The seat does lower itself. Then there is a the "X-Ray" that highlights the open cavity, which if the "black" section is accurate then it's top section lines up basically with the B-mode seat position's head.

We know Option D doesn't work due to Shadow Chronicles (at least for RT, Mospeada is another matter). If C was the answer, you'd think the team would use that more often. If it was B why was this the first we see/hear about it, such an ability would get into C in terms of use I would think.

Seto wrote:
My suspicion has been that it's a human reproduction of the Inbit/Invid's laser weaponry.

I guess that's possible, but how many Invid/Inbit laser examples are there? In GCM it might make sense given the technology background, but in Robotech you'd have a pretty hard time I would think in justifying a human knockoff of Invid laser technology given humans have been using lasers for something like two to three decades prior to Invid contact,

slade the sniper wrote:
Maybe it is supposed to be Laser Guided Bombs...? Medium warhead, gravity bombs, +3 to hit?

There is plenty of precedent for missiles to launch from a dorsal station, but I do not know of any for a gravity powered weapon.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:39 pm
  

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slade the sniper wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
Upper pod: "Laser bombs" are probably meant to be some sort of precision guided missiles. I'm going to go with medium range missiles or alternately an improved sensor pod with the range of the Catseye and the upgrades of the newer Defender Destroid.

-POUNCER

Maybe it is supposed to be Laser Guided Bombs...? Medium warhead, gravity bombs, +3 to hit?

-STS


Bombs don't go on top, but laser guided missiles do.

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2020 3:06 pm
  

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jaymz wrote:
Can we do it better? Yeah. Reinsert the VF-1 series with it's multitude of options and ditch the alpha and beta altogether :P


Already been done to a degree in my universe by a rebel faction. Due to the limited R&D resources they produced the (dismal) VF-2JA and the more useful VF-2SS (both imported from Macross 2). After a relatively small skirmish and a diplomatic solution the VF-1JAs were generally abandoned and the VF-2SSs were put into limited production by the UEEF/REF and used to replace aging VF-1s while the Beta's were still being developed. The VF-2SSs are now being phased out as Betas become more available.

As I re-statted them the VF-2SS "Spaceknights" are basically VF-1Js with upgraded armor (equal to the Alpha) and performance (not needing the FAST Pack for the improved speed/thrust). They were really kept around for their speed and big reaction mass tanks making them interceptors instead of Space Superiority fighters. While they really shine with the SAP pack on, turning them into strike fighters, the resource cost gets well out of hand. With the base VF-1SS nearly as resource expensive as the Beta (and still not truly trans atmospheric) and the SAP Pack adding considerably to the cost (plus the Super Beta being able to use the SAP Pack's particle beam in place of the Syncro Cannon) the time of the VF-2 is as limited as the VF-1's time was.

The Alpha, Beta and their descendants will be the main aerospace mecha of the Robotech forces for a long time to come. And they fit better in the available spacecraft.

Still, there are those rumors people keep hearing of some research project called "Metal Siren." :)

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2020 7:58 pm
  

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jaymz wrote:
Can we do it better? Yeah. Reinsert the VF-1 series with it's multitude of options and ditch the alpha and beta altogether :P

And that is why we are friends!

Has anyone done a 1:1 comparison of the VF-1 to the Alpha and Beta to see what is "better" (speed, range, elite training bonuses, weapons, radar, etc.). I thought I saw one around here somewhere...

As for the LGB's I thought we were still talking about the "bomb bay." Anyway, sorry for the stupidity.

-STS

_________________
My skin is not a sin - Carlos Wallace
A man's rights rest in three boxes. The ballot box, jury box and the cartridge box - Frederick Douglass
I am a firm believer that men with guns can solve any problem - Inscriptus
Any system in which the most populated areas have the most political power, creates an incentive for areas that want power to increase their population - Killer Cyborg


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2020 9:00 pm
  

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Pouncer wrote:
Upper pod: "Laser bombs" are probably meant to be some sort of precision guided missiles. I'm going to go with medium range missiles or alternately an improved sensor pod with the range of the Catseye and the upgrades of the newer Defender Destroid.

The way it's written in Japanese, it's not a laser-guided bomb... rather, it's either a bomb somehow made out of lasers or that produces lasers when it detonates.

That's why my suspicion is that it's a human-built knockoff of the Inbit/Invid energy weapons.



jaymz wrote:
Can we do it better? Yeah. Reinsert the VF-1 series with it's multitude of options and ditch the alpha and beta altogether :P

Harsh, but absolutely true... which is absolutely why RT2E did exactly that in the UEEF Marines sourcebook. :wink: :lol:



Pouncer wrote:
Already been done to a degree in my universe by a rebel faction. Due to the limited R&D resources they produced the (dismal) VF-2JA and the more useful VF-2SS (both imported from Macross 2).

... I'm cringing a little, TBH. Both of those, correctly statted, outclass the Alpha and Beta so badly that even the sad trombone doesn't feel up to the task of expressing the difference... but I guess that is what happens when Palladium does such a terrible job of research for a licensed RPG that they can't even get the year it's set in right. :|



Pouncer wrote:
The Alpha, Beta and their descendants will be the main aerospace mecha of the Robotech forces for a long time to come. And they fit better in the available spacecraft.

What era is your game set in? I'm guessing ~2042 since you're talking about the Beta in service... which would mean those mecha ought to be nearing the end of their service lives, given that they've already got about twenty years on the clock.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2020 11:11 am
  

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jaymz wrote:
Can we do it better? Yeah. Reinsert the VF-1 series with it's multitude of options and ditch the alpha and beta altogether

From a certain POV the only thing really holding the Beta back from being a prime time contender for the VF-1's replacement would be its physical layout, which was dictated by the need to connect to the Alpha. Officially (per HG) it carries more firepower than a VF-1 Super (at least in 2E RPG terms or the vague Infopedia), and it demonstrates greater range (lugging an Alpha to boot). Its main drawback is its aerodynamics, which are dictated in part by the way it connects to the Alpha. If the Beta had been designed properly without the need to connect to the Alpha, or a new "frame" utilizing off the shelf-Beta technology, it could give the VF-1 a serious run for its money.

Pouncer wrote:
Still, there are those rumors people keep hearing of some research project called "Metal Siren."

I've actually considered the thought experiment of "what would a UEEF optimized version of the VF-1 look like", the result is pretty much M2's VF-1MS.

slade the sniper wrote:
Has anyone done a 1:1 comparison of the VF-1 to the Alpha and Beta to see what is "better" (speed, range, elite training bonuses, weapons, radar, etc.). I thought I saw one around here somewhere...

I'm sure it exists in at least piecemeal form. By 2E RPG RAW I know:
-the VF-1 loses out to the NG units in terms of speed in alt-modes (VF-1 is faster in F mode)
-the NG mecha also have 7x the operating time of the VF-1 (by the 2E RPG)
-the Beta has superior range to the VF-1 which beats the Alpha's range in terms of getting into space
-weapons is a bit harder to answer, the Beta's built in guns outclass the VF-1/Alpha (which are identical except in terms of numbers, these though are secondary guns for them unlike on the Beta). The VF-1's gunpod does more damage per attack than the Alpha gunpods (but you get more attack options with the Alpha gunpods). The Alpha and Beta come with conformal/integrated launchers that the VF-1 lack. Wing Hardpoints depending on the configuration for a given mission can favor either the VF-1 or Beta, the Alpha lacks them.
-radar is pretty much C&P (IINM other sensors/avionics are likely this way to) for an Alpha v VF-1, though the Beta has reduced range it has superior tracking
-overall the bonuses favor the VF-1 IIRC
-working backwards (2E RPG's mass, standard payload RPG mass, Infopedia mass, density of fuel to get) the VF-1's fuel capacity in terms of volume is greater than the Alpha or Beta (which is expressed in terms of PC Cells, which one can work out the size)


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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2020 3:34 pm
  

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i'd suggest the following systematic comparisons.

VF-1 Valkyrie vs VF/A-6 Alpha. (including VF-1S vs VF/A-6H command capability)

VF-1 with FAST packs vs VF/B-9 Beta.

VF-1 with FAST packs vs Alpha/Beta docked combination.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2020 5:53 pm
  

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ShadowLogan wrote:
From a certain POV the only thing really holding the Beta back from being a prime time contender for the VF-1's replacement would be its physical layout, which was dictated by the need to connect to the Alpha.

Well, sort of... the raw aerodynamics are only a symptom of the greater problem that the Beta is persistently misidentified as a Fighter when it's actually an Attacker.

(To be fair, this kind of thing does happen in real life e.g. the F-117A... where the misidentification was deliberate to attract more pilots.)



ShadowLogan wrote:
Officially (per HG) it carries more firepower than a VF-1 Super (at least in 2E RPG terms or the vague Infopedia), [...]

That assumes that all things are equal... which they aren't, even in Palladium's simplified take on the technical setting. Quantity does not equal quality.

It's worth remembering that the RPG had to MASSIVELY NERF the VF-1 in order to justify the other mecha existing at all, and even then the VF-1 is still basically the most broken VF in the official setting.



ShadowLogan wrote:
[...] and it demonstrates greater range (lugging an Alpha to boot).

I don't think they've ever made any official statements WRT actual sortie range... the TLEADs in MOSPEADA were good for a one-way trip from the Moon to Earth or vice versa, but that's not really any better than the Super Valkyries of Macross that were routinely used for extended patrols along lunar orbital space described in The Lost Two Years or the unaugmented VF-1s flying thru Saturn's ring system for a surprise attack in the TV series.



ShadowLogan wrote:
Its main drawback is its aerodynamics, which are dictated in part by the way it connects to the Alpha. If the Beta had been designed properly without the need to connect to the Alpha, or a new "frame" utilizing off the shelf-Beta technology, it could give the VF-1 a serious run for its money.

Well, yes... if they sacrificed its actual operational role as an attacker capable of light bomber duties in favor of putting its engines into a fighter fuselage instead, they could've maybe reached the VF-1's level at the expense of losing a necessary unit for close air support of ground troops. The TLEAD/Beta is essentially a futuristic upgunned A-10A Thunderbolt II intended for strafing runs and bombing of enemy troops on the ground. That's why it's armed with three armor-piercing rotary cannons and a bay full of gravity bombs.



slade the sniper wrote:
Has anyone done a 1:1 comparison of the VF-1 to the Alpha and Beta to see what is "better" (speed, range, elite training bonuses, weapons, radar, etc.). I thought I saw one around here somewhere...

With or without the RPG's substantial NERFs to the VF-1 and Robotech's inaccuracies? ShadowLogan and I have done both in great detail over the years.

Performance
The one major non-canon advantage that the RPG's Alpha and Beta have is power system endurance... maybe. The RPG isn't actually specific about the Alpha or Beta's continuous operating time like it is with the Valkyrie, it gives the Valkyrie a continuous operating time but only talks about the Alpha and Beta's endurance in vague terms. The Alpha and Beta's "active combat" endurance is about one month, but that's halved in heavy combat conditions... leaving us to guess what that actually means. The way we usually assume it works is that the standard figure is a month of single shifts (8 hours per shift), and heavy combat constitutes double shifts (16 hours). That'd give the Alpha or Beta an actual continuous operating time of ~244 hours to the VF-1's 48 hours.

In terms of their respective top speeds in level flight, the VF-1 Valkyrie is 56%-75% faster than the Alpha and 172%-245% faster than the Beta at normal atmospheric operating altitudes of 10km or below. The Beta's only capable of rivaling or exceeding the VF-1's speed at extreme altitudes (above 30km) and only in ballistic flight. There's a very specific wrinkle in Guardian mode flight speeds which must be carefully noted. The Alpha actually has two... one with the arms stowed so the sub-engines may be used, and one with the arms deployed. With arms deployed in Guardian mode the Beta and Valkyrie are on an even footing and both are 60% faster than the Alpha. The Alpha, however, is 36% faster than the Valkyrie or Beta in arms-stowed Guardian mode using all its engines to achieve maximum thrust. The Alpha and Beta are both faster in Battloid mode flight speed, but since nobody flies anywhere in battloid mode that doesn't really matter. The VF-1 Valkyrie's thrust-to-weight ratio is greater than that of either the Alpha or Beta, meaning it's going to accelerate much faster, and its use of thrust-vectoring nozzles and superior aerodynamics mean it's going to be a lot more maneuverable. This superior performance may be reflected somewhat in the Special Bonuses to Initiative, Strike (all weapons), parry and dodge, rolling with punches or impacts, and the rather significant advantage of auto-dodge... even without Mecha Elite Combat Training. The Alpha and Beta get bigger bonuses out of MECT, but the baked-in bonuses of the Valkyrie mean it comes out well ahead in almost every category regardless. The radars and other sensors are essentially identical due to Palladium's boilerplate equipment setup. Range isn't really a question the RPG gets into unless the question is whether or not a VF is SSTO-capable. The Alpha isn't, but the VF-1 and Beta are. The late service life VF-1 upgrade adds at further 25% increase to the VF-1's speeds that put it over the top.


Armament and Defenses
The laser weapons are basically a standard template Palladium uses, so in the RPG's stats the Alpha's nose lasers and the VF-1's various lasers are essentially identical in performance. It's worth noting the VF-1 inevitably has more of them (3, 4, or 6 to the Alpha's 2) and can make more flexible use of them since the ones on the VF-1's head can be used in all modes. The GU-11 gunpod the VF-1 has an identical range to the Alpha's EU-13 and Beta's EU-14, but has a much better dice pool for damage on a one-on-one basis (2D6x10 vs 1D4x10) leading to greater average damage per burst (70 MD vs 25 MD), greater burst capacity (25 vs 20), meaning the total average MD output of the GU-11 is 3.5x greater than the EU-13's (1750 MD vs 500 MD).

Missiles are a bit of a sticky wicket, due to Palladium having to NERF the VF-1's armament to avoid the Alpha being totally irrelevant. RAW, the VF-1 has a significant advantage in that it can deploy long range missiles where the Alpha can take only built-in SRMs and the Beta is hard-limited at MRMs. Where the sticky wicket comes in is that the RPG lists the UUM-7 micro-missile pods that the VF-1 uses in the Macross OSM that can carry 15 missiles each. Those missiles are SUPPOSED to be SRMs (they're the same model that are identified as SRMs on the Super Pack stats), which would give the VF-1 the ability to carry an essentially identical number of SRMs to the Alpha (60) on top of its better gunpod and more numerous lasers. These were NERF'd to mini-missiles to prevent the VF-1 from being able to roll the Alpha in absolutely every category. Palladium's stats also assume all missiles of a category are equal for simplicity's sake, despite the Alpha's SRMs being less than 1/3 the size of the VF-1's (which have warheads bigger than the Alpha's entire missile). This, of course, also leads to the possibility of equipping the VF-1 with the Alpha's smaller SRMs, which are roughly the same diameter as the VF-1's but much shorter, which would let the UUM-7 micro-missile pods carry three times as many missiles bringing the VF-1's carryable SRM total to 180... three times that of the Alpha and Beta, and that's without the Super Pack.

The Alpha was also given a 20% buff in terms of Main Body MDC to give it an advantage over the VF-1, though that disparity was eliminated by the late service life upgrade that added a 20% MDC buff to the entire VF-1. The VF-1 was already slightly more durable in almost every category except main body MDC anyway, so that 20% upgrade exemplified by the VF-1R actually makes it a more durable VF than the Alpha. The Beta's got a 22% main body MDC advantage over the Alpha and VF-1R per RAW, though most locational MDC is comparable on the VF-1R.

The Beta has some decent weapons (three unlimited-ammo versions of the EU-13 essentially make up the difference between the EU-13 and GU-11), but it doesn't help that a lot of its weapons aren't accessible in all modes. The EU-14s are only properly usable in fighter mode, the pulse beam cannons have about 1/3 the range and 1/2 the damage of a GU-11 and are only accessible in battloid (at which point the EU-14s are locked off), the bomb bay has about 12.5% less payload capacity than the combined lift of the four pylons on the VF-1, and its wing pylons are less capable than the VF-1's (no LRMs) and can't retain ordnance during transformation the way the VF-1 can.

The biggest advantage the VF-1 has is that it's invisible to Invid protoculture sensors because it is not protoculture-powered.



So, all told, if your choice is between sending an Alpha-Beta combiner or two Valkyries... you're almost always going to be better off sending the two Valkyries. Especially if we're talking post 1st war when the VF-1R upgrades are available. You get a faster, more agile, more accurate, more versatile mecha that hits a lot harder with most of its weapons.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2020 8:26 pm
  

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So looking at the side by side of a Super Vf-1R (the latest greatest version of The Valkyrie in Robotech which while it keeps saying it is for increasing its maneuverability in space says ZERO about it not being usable in atmosphere even including that it can attain speeds to reach orbit thus inferring atmospheric use) and the Beta....I am using ONLY game stats since this is for the game.

Super VF-1R - 420 MDC
Beta - 515 MDC

Advantage - Beta

Super VF-1R - Mach 5.08 (Mach 2.71 x1.25 for the 1R x1.5 for the Fast Packs) at 10 000m
Beta - about Mach 1.56 at 18 000m

Advantage - Super VF-1R

Super VF-1R GU-11 - 2d6x10md, available all modes, 4000ft
Beta Triple guns - 3d4x10 but only usable when not connected to the alpha otherwise twin fire is 2d4x10, not available in battloid mode, 4000ft

Advantage - Effectively even since the Super VF-1R has all mode usage but the Beta is not ammunition dependent

Super VF-1R Head Guns - 4d4 or 1d4x10+2 available all modes 2000ft
Beta Arm guns - 1d6x10 Available in Battloid only, 1500ft

Advantage - slightly to the Super VF-1R for it's all mode usage

Super VF-1R - 46 Short Range Missiles
Beta - 56 Short Range Missiles

Advantage - Slightly to the Beta

Super VF-1R - no bomb
Beta - 4-17 bombs in a fixed bomb bay

Advantage - Beta because it has a bomb bay

Super VF-1R - 4 hardpoints that can each carry 2-5 bombs (8-20 total), 3 medium range missiles (12 total), 2 long range missiles (8 total) or a 15 mini missile launcher (60 total).
Beta - 6 hardpoints that can each carry 3 short range missiles (18 total), 1 medium range missiles (6 total) or a 15 mini missile launcher (90 total).

Advantage - I weigh it relatively even with slight advantage to the Super VF-1R since it has a more versatile payload assortment for it's hardpoints with bombs and long range missiles.

Looking this over.....I still say the Super VF-1R would be the better option as it can fulfill the part of the Beta, can better play the part of the Alpha, and is all around faster in normal combat ops as well as more versatile overall

So....steal a Macross design, say VF-11, and make that the new All-Purpose Earth Forces fighter as it also has additional FAST packs and an "armoured" option as the VF-1 did....and eliminates ANY need for a two Veritech force altogether. (just don't use the old Steelfalcon stats as they are pre 2nd ed and are not on par with even the VF-1 in 2nd ed iirc)

Otherwise to be honest this is an exercise in futility since even the original writers couldn't be effed to reconcile the disparity in technology of the two disparate series'

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 12:20 am
  

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Well the degenerated fast. How about we get back on topic, what other improvements can be made to the Beta without going too off mode?

Because none of this arguing about which is better is helping me one bit.

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 1:36 am
  

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Pouncer wrote:
Well the degenerated fast. How about we get back on topic, what other improvements can be made to the Beta without going too off mode?

Therein lies the problem... there's very little that can be done to "fix" the Beta, because its biggest issues stem from fundamental flaws in its design.

Adding a pilot to the Beta when it's docked to the Alpha means you've got a second trained pilot essentially sitting on their hands with nothing to do. The Beta's weapons are fixed and its avionics mean that there's no need for a RIO, ordnance officer, or other backseat crewman and the Beta's pilot can't act as an independent gunner either. He/she is just spam in a can and there's no way for that pilot to disembark or eject if the aircraft is shot down. That's a big part of why they're usually not manned and treated like a glorified FAST Pack.

Enhancing the Beta's weaponry only helps a little, since all but one of the Beta's weapons have mode-specific restrictions that leave them unavailable in at least one mode or when the aircraft is docked. Its choice of armaments isn't really effective in any one role either, the Robotech version's sort of a hopeless melange of guns for an aircraft that's winning no turning fights and bombs for enemies that don't usually fight on the ground.

The Beta's one of those answers to a question nobody asked... which is why even the show has such trouble finding something for it to do, leaving it as a glorified booster rocket or at best a skycrane hauling a jeep around. It's really difficult to work into a campaign because it's so limited when it's attached to the Alpha, and when it's not there's very little for it to do regardless of how you tweak it.



Pouncer wrote:
Because none of this arguing about which is better is helping me one bit.

It is, unfortunately, a near-inevitable problem with discussing the deficiencies of the New Generation mecha in Robotech.

From the very beginning, the obvious deficiencies of the Alpha and Beta always left Robotech's fans and licensees wondering why they were adopted at all... and of course the comparison ends up being made to their immediate predecessor in the Robotech setting. The UEEF Marines book threw it into sharp relief with the Marines hanging onto the VF-1 for decades instead of using the new fighters. Musing on why they're deficient inevitably leads to musing on the availability of aircraft that could do the job better... a question with a very clear answer.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 4:12 am
  

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Seto Kaiba wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
Well the degenerated fast. How about we get back on topic, what other improvements can be made to the Beta without going too off mode?

Therein lies the problem... there's very little that can be done to "fix" the Beta, because its biggest issues stem from fundamental flaws in its design.

Adding a pilot to the Beta when it's docked to the Alpha means you've got a second trained pilot essentially sitting on their hands with nothing to do. The Beta's weapons are fixed and its avionics mean that there's no need for a RIO, ordnance officer, or other backseat crewman and the Beta's pilot can't act as an independent gunner either. He/she is just spam in a can and there's no way for that pilot to disembark or eject if the aircraft is shot down. That's a big part of why they're usually not manned and treated like a glorified FAST Pack.

Enhancing the Beta's weaponry only helps a little, since all but one of the Beta's weapons have mode-specific restrictions that leave them unavailable in at least one mode or when the aircraft is docked. Its choice of armaments isn't really effective in any one role either, the Robotech version's sort of a hopeless melange of guns for an aircraft that's winning no turning fights and bombs for enemies that don't usually fight on the ground.

The Beta's one of those answers to a question nobody asked... which is why even the show has such trouble finding something for it to do, leaving it as a glorified booster rocket or at best a skycrane hauling a jeep around. It's really difficult to work into a campaign because it's so limited when it's attached to the Alpha, and when it's not there's very little for it to do regardless of how you tweak it.


Well, the two pilots working together, one as pilot and one as gunner worked fine in playtest. And if more mecha were needed then the two would separate. Seriously, I based my conceptual work on real world aircraft like the F-15 Tomcat and modern attack helicopters for a reason.


Seto Kaiba wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
Because none of this arguing about which is better is helping me one bit.

It is, unfortunately, a near-inevitable problem with discussing the deficiencies of the New Generation mecha in Robotech.

From the very beginning, the obvious deficiencies of the Alpha and Beta always left Robotech's fans and licensees wondering why they were adopted at all... and of course the comparison ends up being made to their immediate predecessor in the Robotech setting. The UEEF Marines book threw it into sharp relief with the Marines hanging onto the VF-1 for decades instead of using the new fighters. Musing on why they're deficient inevitably leads to musing on the availability of aircraft that could do the job better... a question with a very clear answer.


Well I do hope the next person to respond actually wants to help me with my project.

-POUNCER


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 7:38 am
  

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Palladin

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I made a suggestion after my assessment above so I will say it again.

Quote:
So....steal a Macross design, say VF-11, and make that the new All-Purpose Earth Forces fighter as it also has additional FAST packs and an "armoured" option as the VF-1 did....and eliminates ANY need for a two Veritech force altogether. (just don't use the old Steelfalcon stats as they are pre 2nd ed and are not on par with even the VF-1 in 2nd ed iirc)

Otherwise to be honest this is an exercise in futility since even the original writers couldn't be effed to reconcile the disparity in technology of the two disparate series'


And I will add....with the Earth as deficient as it is in personnel post Regess departure.... they need as good an all-around fighter as they can get, not one that is a compliment or as dedicated as the Beta would be just to make better use of their pilot resources. A good multi-purpose craft would then replace the Alpha and Beta and be a better expenditure of time, materials, and personnel. That or design a new Alpha and fix it by giving it the versatility of Macross mecha (Fast packs, etc, and something that Dave Deitrich tried to do back in the 90s with his Third Invid War material....though he too repeatedly included a new Beta to go with it OR something along the lines of the Super Alpha in the old Return of the Master book OR just give the Current Alpha "Fast Packs or a non-piloted booster which was done at a site called Robotech Research)

Asking for how to fix the Beta can be looked at in real world terms....the US effectively asked "how can we make the F-4 better" and the answer was they couldn't so the Air Force created the F-15 (and the F-16 as a supposed "cheaper" alternative) which was a better all-around craft to replace it. Further on they no longer needed the F-111 either since the 15E (Which does have a Weapons Officer but that's because it's a light bomber/Strike Craft not a fighter) could essentially fill that role too. The navy created the F-14.....which frankly failed to do so (regardless of how Top Gun Portrayed the F-14 as a Dog-fighter) forcing them to keep using older craft like the A-4, A-6, and A-7 a lot longer than they probably should have, and is largely why in less than a decade they had to try and get another craft which resulted in the F/A-18. Robotech has demonstrate Zero need for what you are proposing to be honest.

As for having 2 "crew".....very few aircraft do that even at the height of the F-14s use. Additionally in regards to Attack helicopters, that's as much as it's better to have the pilot focused on flying and scanning potential threats from the ground since radar is near useless at the altitudes they operate (that has since been rectified to some degree) while the gunner focuses on targeting enemies. The best ground attack plane on the planet uses one person not two (USAF A-10) and the majority of Air Forces on Earth, if not not pretty much all, have gone back to their fighter craft being single-person only. Two-person "fighter" aircraft are exceptions not the norm. Furthermore you are basing "2 crew" on two crew in a signle craft, not two separate craft so such a comparison isn't really valid.

Furthermore, the discussion largely being had is in effort to get to the answer of how to fix the Beta. In order to fix something those discussing it need to hash out what those deficiencies are how to do go about fixing it. That will almost invariably result in comparisons of the item needing fixing and other items.

Frankly what I see is people discussing the issues with the Beta as well as giving answers in their own right to some degree and you just not liking the discussion being had and answers being given.

(For the record if you want to argue that you used real world craft to support your argument you should at least get the designation right....F-15 is the Eagle, and while -15E does indeed have 2 crew, the rest of the variants do not as far as I am aware. The Tomcat is the F-14.)

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 11:54 am
  

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Seto wrote:
That assumes that all things are equal... which they aren't, even in Palladium's simplified take on the technical setting. Quantity does not equal quality.

It's worth remembering that the RPG had to MASSIVELY NERF the VF-1 in order to justify the other mecha existing at all, and even then the VF-1 is still basically the most broken VF in the official setting.



I agree all things aren't created equal and Palladium does tend to simplify and C&P to a large extent. I would not rule out quantity though given "Quantity has a quality all its own" ;)

The VF-1 wasn't the only thing that got nerfed, the Beta and Conbat's LRM capacity was nerfed in the TSC main RPG vs Infopedia (and when appropriate AotSC).

Seto wrote:
I don't think they've ever made any official statements WRT actual sortie range... the TLEADs in MOSPEADA were good for a one-way trip from the Moon to Earth or vice versa, but that's not really any better than the Super Valkyries of Macross that were routinely used for extended patrols along lunar orbital space described in The Lost Two Years or the unaugmented VF-1s flying thru Saturn's ring system for a surprise attack in the TV series.

There isn't per say, but looking at the animation (85Ep/TSC) the Beta's flight from Earth to the Moon amounts to a distance greater than Saturn's Rings (main inner edge to main outer edge)*.

I've calculated the Delta-V available to the stock VF-1 in the OSM based on data you provided me (~20kps), the main sticking point with the TLead is we don't know how long Scott's flight is supposed to take, but if the Beta shed the Alpha's mass it would have ~50% better Delta-V. Assuming the Alpha/Beta used an Apollo style trajectory (~72hrs transit) it would need ~14kps to take off from Earth and land on the Moon (and 50% more of ~14kps would be ~21kps), a faster/shorter-trip would require more Delta-V which the animation implies (and the RPG given life support endurance)..

*Saturn's Ring extend out to 282,000km from the planet if we ignore the E-Ring (as I think NASA does when providing that figure, see Links) and (unknown in '85) Pheobe-Ring, the average distance between Earth and the Moon is 384,400km. And the dialogue has them operating in the Cassini quadrant IIRC, which could be the Cassini Division which if true would limit the actual distances involved even further to the A and B Ring.

https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/planets/saturn/in-depth/
https://caps.gsfc.nasa.gov/simpson/kingswood/rings/
http://coolcosmos.ipac.caltech.edu/ask/ ... n-s-rings-
https://spaceplace.nasa.gov/moon-distance/en/

jaymz wrote:
Looking this over.....I still say the Super VF-1R would be the better option as it can fulfill the part of the Beta, can better play the part of the Alpha, and is all around faster in normal combat ops as well as more versatile overall

So a 3-3-1 result (-1/-9/tie) favors the VF-1, I think it actually shows what I was saying. The Beta can be a prime contender to replace the VF-1 (by extension I would also say the Alpha) given the VF-1 by your list had a few "slight edge". Now there are other areas like speed that start to skew things, but those things are also areas that could be theoretically upgraded on the Beta to offer better performance.

jaymz wrote:
(For the record if you want to argue that you used real world craft to support your argument you should at least get the designation right....F-15 is the Eagle, and while -15E does indeed have 2 crew, the rest of the variants do not as far as I am aware. The Tomcat is the F-14.)

FYI F-15A/C models are single seaters, F-15B/D are two seaters. Export versions (along with paper variants) of the F-15 vary between single and two seaters depending on which version of the F-15 they are based on. The B/D version is intended as a trainer (much like how 2-seater variants are for the F-16)

Pouncer wrote:
Well the degenerated fast. How about we get back on topic, what other improvements can be made to the Beta without going too off mode?

Because none of this arguing about which is better is helping me one bit.

Getting back on topic. In order to identify what needs to be improved one does have to identify problems. Unfortunately some focus on the easy fix "use X instead" as opposed to "how to make Y better".

Jaymz IINM applies the FBW bonuses found in TRM/TMS mecha to NG/TSC mecha. Now which mecha to C&P from the sister sagas to respective NG/TSC mecha is another matter.

Personally I think some of the issues can be avoided with the Beta by declaring it a Drone Unit (and treating the Point K recovered unit as an IMU) and allowing the bomb-bay to deploy (specifically designed model) SRMs in Fighter Mode. Switching the Reload capacity of the MM-20/16s would also be in order (this makes the Alpha blockage less of an issue) or simply treating the MM-20/16 setup as an IMU and going with MM-48 setup per the OSM spec.

The main way to improve the Beta is to find ways it can go faster (and be more agile) in F-mode. Which means altering the aerodynamics and/or giving it more raw thrust. Raw thrust could be achieved by giving the unit an "Overboost" capacity, though thrust improvement to speed is not 1:1 it would make the Beta's T/W ratio closer to the VF-1 (and the Alpha would exceed the VF-1 this way, though it does so when VF-1 isn't in OB). Aerodynamic improvements run into the issue of what can be done while maintaining the existing aesthetic look (and Alpha docking capability) unless you want a "New" model variant that would be allowed to alter its looks and doesn't have A/B linkup requirement.


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 12:20 pm
  

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I actually rewrote all the mecha altogether (and do not have 1R at all in my version of things) and artificially improved later generations in areas not speed based (mdc, bonuses, avionics, etc)

I plan to redo Dave Dietrich's work to incorporate "proper" improvements to at least the alphas he did....and may just turn the betas into, as you suggest, "drone" units also taking a slight cue from bubblegum crisis and the moto-slaves they use.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 3:22 pm
  

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Pouncer wrote:
Well, the two pilots working together, one as pilot and one as gunner worked fine in playtest. [...]

Can't imagine it'd produce results that were different in any meaningful way from just having a one-man crew... Palladium's system isn't really set up for that kind of two-man co-op unless you've got a deliberately min-maxed set of characters.



Pouncer wrote:
[...] And if more mecha were needed then the two would separate. [...]

... but then you end up with one fighter and one slow, wallowing, airborne target.



Pouncer wrote:
Seriously, I based my conceptual work on real world aircraft like the F-15 Tomcat and modern attack helicopters for a reason.

That's a false parallel, though... the Alpha and Beta aren't outfitted with any weapons or other specialized equipment that would necessitate a WSO/RIO, they're not operating in any role where a WSO or RIO would be necessary, and even if they were these are aircraft that are computerized to an even greater extent than our most advanced modern aircraft which also don't need the help.

You need a WSO or RIO if you've got a flight control system that's so primitive it's barely better than a speak-n-spell like the F-14 Tomcat's or if you've got mission-specific weapons that are going to be fired off the axis of the aircraft's flight. The Alpha is a close air support attacker like the AV-8B Harrier II that sometimes doubles as an ultrashort-range air superiority fighter, and the Beta's basically in the same operational role as the A-10A Thunderbolt II. You'll notice both of those are single-seat aircraft. They're not engaging enemies from high altitudes with precision munitions, they're going in at low altitudes and close ranges to engage with guns and short-range rockets. There's no ELINT/AWACS variant to worry about either. They're not interceptors engaging with long-range missiles at high relative speeds, ground strike aircraft engaging with laser-guided bombs from high altitudes, or precision bombers.



Pouncer wrote:
Well I do hope the next person to respond actually wants to help me with my project.

You'll notice the three most knowledgeable people on the forums - myself, ShadowLogan, and jaymz - all essentially gave you the same answer.

You can try to buff its stats to make it less bad, but the only way to get a good aircraft in its role is to throw it away and get a different plane. Even the Alpha ain't winning any prizes, so much so that even the recent Robotech comics from Titan Publishing explicitly acknowledge that it's a piece of flying junk and have characters successfully advocate against its adoption.





jaymz wrote:
Quote:
So....steal a Macross design, say VF-11, and make that the new All-Purpose Earth Forces fighter as it also has additional FAST packs and an "armoured" option as the VF-1 did....and eliminates ANY need for a two Veritech force altogether. (just don't use the old Steelfalcon stats as they are pre 2nd ed and are not on par with even the VF-1 in 2nd ed iirc)

Otherwise to be honest this is an exercise in futility since even the original writers couldn't be effed to reconcile the disparity in technology of the two disparate series'

The whole reason I asked Pouncer what era his game is in was because, c.2044, the Alpha and Beta are essentially twenty year old aircraft and destined for replacement in the near future. They tried to do that in RTSC, but Tommy wasn't quite up to designing a replacement aircraft and his plans for the VF-13 Delta Fighter ended at a few concept pieces and a rough sketch of its transformation before the dirt-cheap production switched to a slightly tweaked version of the Shadow Fighter CG model and called it a day. The Alpha and Beta are only continuing in service because the UEEF doesn't have the resources to replace them anymore and didn't have the time to prove out a new aircraft before the 3rd Reclamation Operation.



jaymz wrote:
That or design a new Alpha and fix it by giving it the versatility of Macross mecha (Fast packs, etc, and something that Dave Deitrich tried to do back in the 90s with his Third Invid War material....though he too repeatedly included a new Beta to go with it OR something along the lines of the Super Alpha in the old Return of the Master book OR just give the Current Alpha "Fast Packs or a non-piloted booster which was done at a site called Robotech Research)

They tried that in RTSC, and it wasn't very good... the Alpha is so small that it limits what you can do with it, FAST Pack-wise, to the extent that all you really get are some conformal propellant tanks or a handful of extra missiles. The Alpha and Beta are apparently so underengineered that simply adding the FAST Packs was enough to push them to their airframe design limit.





ShadowLogan wrote:
I agree all things aren't created equal and Palladium does tend to simplify and C&P to a large extent. I would not rule out quantity though given "Quantity has a quality all its own" ;)

There is that, yes... but if your quality is bad, you need a LOT of quantity to make up the difference.



ShadowLogan wrote:
The VF-1 wasn't the only thing that got nerfed, the Beta and Conbat's LRM capacity was nerfed in the TSC main RPG vs Infopedia (and when appropriate AotSC).

To be fair, the Beta not having LRM capability is Palladium correcting a piece of wrong information in the uRRG-supplied "data". The design never had LRM capability. That's not a NERF, it's just being more accurate than the uRRG's misinformation. :?

You are correct that the Conbat should have, though.



ShadowLogan wrote:
There isn't per say, but looking at the animation (85Ep/TSC) the Beta's flight from Earth to the Moon amounts to a distance greater than Saturn's Rings (main inner edge to main outer edge)*.

They didn't go that way, though... they went laterally through one of the Cassini divisions. I believe that's mentioned even in the Robotech version.



ShadowLogan wrote:
So a 3-3-1 result (-1/-9/tie) favors the VF-1, I think it actually shows what I was saying. The Beta can be a prime contender to replace the VF-1 (by extension I would also say the Alpha) given the VF-1 by your list had a few "slight edge". Now there are other areas like speed that start to skew things, but those things are also areas that could be theoretically upgraded on the Beta to offer better performance.

Basically, the Better Beta argument boils down to "just redesign the damned thing" or "stick its engines in a different aircraft"... which borders on being the same thing jaymz and I were saying about throwing it away and getting a better plane.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 4:50 pm
  

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seto wrote:
They tried that in RTSC, and it wasn't very good... the Alpha is so small that it limits what you can do with it, FAST Pack-wise, to the extent that all you really get are some conformal propellant tanks or a handful of extra missiles. The Alpha and Beta are apparently so underengineered that simply adding the FAST Packs was enough to push them to their airframe design limit.



That's why I mentioned the Dave Deitrich stuff. Take his art and base a new "better" design around them. That's the best I got besides introducing the vf-3000 or vf-11.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 12:23 pm
  

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Seto wrote:
They didn't go that way, though... they went laterally through one of the Cassini divisions. I believe that's mentioned even in the Robotech version.

Still doesn't change the fact that the size involved is actually less than the distance from Earth to the Moon. The Cassini Division is located within the Rings (and is 4800km wide), specifically one of the gaps in the Rings (each gap has its own designation).

They might have been going laterally with the Ring structure as opposed to cutting across it, but that doesn't mean the Beta (w/o the Alpha for sure) couldn't do the same thing. We have an idea of what the Delta-V both vehicles are capable of executing after all.

Seto wrote:
Basically, the Better Beta argument boils down to "just redesign the damned thing" or "stick its engines in a different aircraft"... which borders on being the same thing jaymz and I were saying about throwing it away and getting a better plane.

Throwing it out completely though isn't an option the OP is looking at. Which means adding/changing technology that is part of the design.


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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 1:04 pm
  

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ShadowLogan wrote:
Throwing it out completely though isn't an option the OP is looking at. Which means adding/changing technology that is part of the design.


If they OP is dead set on just fixing what is then the Third Invid War betas are the thing to look at.

That said, a flying brick is flying brick regardless of the tech in it so unless you are going to introduce anti-grav to it it'll be what it is and nothing more. It is just NOT designed for what the OP is getting at imo. Thus replace it entirely with a better craft.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 1:18 pm
  

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I suppose you COULD use the art for the Gamma fighter as the Alpha/beta replacement if you spec it out properly.....

Particle guns.
Integral micro-missile launchers (ala the Alpha).
Hardpoints for fighter use.
And the Design looks like it could potentially take on fast pack systems of some kind.

Make it roughly the size of the VF-1/Beta and you have an all-purpose fighter essentially with off the shelf tech to build it.

Edit - You could also re-introduce the old 1st Ed Vindicator as the new Fighter up sizing the Alpha to take the beta Engines and go from there....and come up with Fast pack or add on packs of some kind to again go to one platform instead of two....because the initial premise of HAVING two platforms in the setting as is, is frankly, bad. Lack of personnel and resources but continuing with a dual platform style fighter system is just all around poor decision making.

Personally I'd say go with the spec'ing of the Gamma to be what is needed at the size needed to accomplish it. Not like there were any specs for it in the first place as well as having the Robotech pedigree being a Robotech concept design and not a Macross pull.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 2:12 pm
  

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honestly i'd be more likely to use the Gamma Fighter as supplement to the Alpha and Beta rather than a replacement. but if you want to go the replacement route, you could easily fluff it as a SLMH fueled replacement based off a modernized YF-4 airframe. perhaps developed for planetary defense for sentinels worlds and similar locations where purely PC powered mecha make less logistical sense, which the UEEF then pushes into service fleet wide to reduce PC usage.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 3:14 pm
  

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jaymz wrote:
If they OP is dead set on just fixing what is then the Third Invid War betas are the thing to look at.

I agree that is one option to fixing the A/B, but that may or may not be palatable to everyone or the OP.

jaymz wrote:
That said, a flying brick is flying brick regardless of the tech in it so unless you are going to introduce anti-grav to it it'll be what it is and nothing more. It is just NOT designed for what the OP is getting at imo. Thus replace it entirely with a better craft.

I don't think we have to plug in Anti-grav per say as the only option, options exist like:
-plasma/forward jets can reduce drag (as counter intuitive as this might seem)
-using variable geometry wings (essentially most if not all of the hardware is already present in the transformation system)
-force field tech (create an invisible aerodynamic shell)
-micro structures (flaps or holes) on the skin can reduce drag
-replace the Alpha on the docking beam with something akin to Wing/Wing-Zero Gundam's Shield/Nose (from Gundam Wing series not the EW OVA, the nose of both in aircraft mode forms the shield in mobile suit mode), obviously not useful for a Beta that was connected to an Alpha but one deployed solo...

None of these are going to be a magic bullet to make the problems go away, but they can certainly be used for a more viable platform.

jaymz wrote:
Edit - You could also re-introduce the old 1st Ed Vindicator as the new Fighter up sizing the Alpha to take the beta Engines and go from there....and come up with Fast pack or add on packs of some kind to again go to one platform instead of two....because the initial premise of HAVING two platforms in the setting as is, is frankly, bad. Lack of personnel and resources but continuing with a dual platform style fighter system is just all around poor decision making.

I would be careful here, off hand I'm not sure if even a 1E Vindicator is big enough to take the main Beta Engines but it certainly can take something like updated VF-1/YF-4 engines.

Add-on Packs for the Alpha are doable, but the way TY did them I don't think was the best approach. You'd either have to follow the Delta Fighter in Return of the Masters (Revised, 1E) or something that goes along the undercarriage in the same basic spot as the Beta's docking arm.

As for a mixed VF fleet vs pure VF fleet, there are pros and cons to both. I'm more in favor of the mixed fleet since it allows for the limited resources/personnel to be used most effectively in operations, research aspect it would put a bigger strain though I don't think they'd move to replace both at the same time (unless there are more secret development projects like Edwards ran that are siphoning off resources/people we don't know about, and these projects I don't see as Edwards managed but could be other factions within the UEEF).


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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 3:55 pm
  

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That's why i also suggest the Gamma art as a starting point....

Aside from that, having dedicated craft for dedicated jobs is not more efficient and problematic if you do not have the personnel to manage it at appropriate levels (which post Regess departure in addition to the Haydonite betrayal WOULD be an issue)...which still has me leaning to a single platform that can do air superiority or ground support. We have the art....it would just need someone to do a gerwalk mode.... and honestly I don't mind the look of the Gamma truth be told.

Looking at the Vindicator of old 1st ed....it is almost the same size of the current Beta....less blocky/sort of streamlined frame (by comparison).... I'd say it could take two of the beta engines (with still having auxiliary engines like the alpha in the arms for fighter mode use) and being a less blocky design could out perform the beta with only two engines... I'd say the Vindicator might be a good option to stay within Robotech lore and still maintain the same tech level without introducing mecha level tech that currently does not exist (like your aforementioned force fields) or trying to shoehorn other things in (VG wings, node deflectors etc). This also goes to allowing ta switch to single platform

The fact that current canon actually has pilots literally slamming the alpha and beta mecha as effectively trash......

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 7:53 pm
  

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Checking again...the old Vindicator is actually still slightly bigger (taller) than the Current beta....and the leg size indicates even more that it could have beta engines....hmmmm

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2020 9:25 pm
  

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Alright.....so I decided to to do a Gamma fighter using the old vindicator size and such as a starting point and playing into my bias towards having things like fast packs available.

If you want to take a look PM me.

Edit - this is to me the way to go. It replaces 2 lackluster units with one more effective versatile unit. It is already at least part of Robotech Lore. It uses known tech and ideas already in Robotech.

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Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2020 10:49 am
  

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Knight

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jaymz
Re: Vindicator size
Yes the overall dimensions of the Vindicator is such that it should be able to accept a Beta Engine in an off the shelf-configuration. However in terms of the finer details is where one starts to run into trouble I susepct.

I went and re-scaled an Alpha image (side profile) from its 10.25m length to 14.3m in length and setting it to have semi-transparency to overlay it with a Beta image (side profile) scaled to be 9.7m in length against the original Alpha. And it did not fit. There was Beta structure going above and below the new Alpha's leg, now technically the Alpha's leg rotates 90deg in F-mode from B-mode (unlike the Beta) but the Nozzle on the Beta has a larger (exit) diameter than the new Alpha's leg height in F-mode. While the nozzle could be altered, IMHO the view of the engine we can't see is likely of similar diameter to the exit size of the nozzle which suggests it won't fit.

To be honest though I think the UEEF given the PC shortage is likely to look at either a pure fusion design (ala VF-1) or some type of "flex-fuel" design (fusion/PC) instead of relying to heavily on pure PC. I also did the above to a VF-1 with the new Alpha, and it fit.

Re: Gamma Fighter
That is an option of course. Given its plan-form is similar to the YF-4, might I suggest just using the YF-4 instead of the Vindicator (its only slightly smaller) since that seems to be what TY was going for with the design IMHO anyway.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2020 11:30 am
  

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Shadow - pm sent

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Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2020 12:50 pm
  

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jaymz wrote:
That's why I mentioned the Dave Deitrich stuff. Take his art and base a new "better" design around them. That's the best I got besides introducing the vf-3000 or vf-11.

That's one way to go about it, I suppose...



ShadowLogan wrote:
They might have been going laterally with the Ring structure as opposed to cutting across it, but that doesn't mean the Beta (w/o the Alpha for sure) couldn't do the same thing. We have an idea of what the Delta-V both vehicles are capable of executing after all.

Maneuvering through a ring system under power is a LOT more propellant-intensive than a hard-burn and then idle cruise between Earth and the Moon... and you've got some vague ideas, but nothing exactly verifiable from the Beta's side.


ShadowLogan wrote:
Throwing it out completely though isn't an option the OP is looking at. Which means adding/changing technology that is part of the design.

There's no real path to a fix for the Beta's problems in modifying the design. Too many of its flaws are bound up in its basic design, like its poor aerodynamic performance, most of its weapons not being available more than one or two modes, etc. It's just a bad design in ways that aren't really fixable.



jaymz wrote:
I suppose you COULD use the art for the Gamma fighter as the Alpha/beta replacement if you spec it out properly.....

What little art there is for it suggests it's sized similarly to the Conbat... which means it's on the small end for a fighter in general and suffers from a lot of the same issues the Alpha does WRT its small size constraining its capabilities. It's got a pair of guns and a pair of pylons, but that's about all we can say about its armaments for sure. It looks like it's supposed to have a gunpod, though it's not at all clear how or where it'd carry it or what it might be.


jaymz wrote:
Personally I'd say go with the spec'ing of the Gamma to be what is needed at the size needed to accomplish it. Not like there were any specs for it in the first place as well as having the Robotech pedigree being a Robotech concept design and not a Macross pull.

You could go the UEEF Marines route and just bring the VF-1 back... it's better at the Alpha and Beta's jobs than either aircraft individually or both of them together, and with a little modernization it's basically a kingmaker in the RPG.



ShadowLogan wrote:
I don't think we have to plug in Anti-grav per say as the only option, options exist like:
-plasma/forward jets can reduce drag (as counter intuitive as this might seem)

Not really something the Beta can pull off, that requires airframe shaping the Beta doesn't support.


ShadowLogan wrote:
-using variable geometry wings (essentially most if not all of the hardware is already present in the transformation system)

The Beta already has a variable-sweep (VG) wing... it's too small to do the aircraft much good.


ShadowLogan wrote:
-force field tech (create an invisible aerodynamic shell)

Humans don't have force field tech in Robotech... and that'd only really work if they had enough control over the field topology to create a nice aerodynamic shape. The energy shields we've seen in RT are mostly either flat planar shields or spherical.


ShadowLogan wrote:
-micro structures (flaps or holes) on the skin can reduce drag

Not really gonna be enough to mitigate the fact that it's a flying brick... that kind of vortex flow manipulation only works if you're already aerodynamic.


ShadowLogan wrote:
-replace the Alpha on the docking beam with something akin to Wing/Wing-Zero Gundam's Shield/Nose (from Gundam Wing series not the EW OVA, the nose of both in aircraft mode forms the shield in mobile suit mode), obviously not useful for a Beta that was connected to an Alpha but one deployed solo...

That'd prevent the Beta from transforming.

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Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2020 2:18 pm
  

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Now Seto you know as well as I if it were just for me I'd likely use the VF-3000 or VF-11.

That said, I'm trying to keep it robotech lore only in order to better fit what op wants so to speak (and avoid the macross pull), so taking a palladium and HG play by fudging numbers, I used the gamma making a design that incorporated elements of the vf-1, yf-4, alpha, and beta.....

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Last edited by jaymz on Tue Apr 14, 2020 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2020 2:37 pm
  

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Seto wrote:
Maneuvering through a ring system under power is a LOT more propellant-intensive than a hard-burn and then idle cruise between Earth and the Moon... and you've got some vague ideas, but nothing exactly verifiable from the Beta's side.

While the Beta is certainly more vague in terms of the specific details that could go a long way toward resolving this, what is available strongly points to it having at least as much Delta-V as a stock VF-1.

Seto wrote:
There's no real path to a fix for the Beta's problems in modifying the design. Too many of its flaws are bound up in its basic design, like its poor aerodynamic performance, most of its weapons not being available more than one or two modes, etc. It's just a bad design in ways that aren't really fixable.

I agree there is no magic bullet that will solve all the problems the Beta has due to its design. Some are more fixable than others (MM-20/16 to just straight MM-48 for ex.) and others really require a whole sale new platform to really address (ex. aerodynamics) but still some level of mitigation is better than none.

Seto wrote:
Not really something the Beta can pull off, that requires airframe shaping the Beta doesn't support.

Plasma/forward jets is certainly something they can pull off with some minor modification. Weather it is worth it is another matter.

Seto wrote:
The Beta already has a variable-sweep (VG) wing... it's too small to do the aircraft much good.

And what prevents it from increasing the existing range it has? Though I disagree with the depiction in TSC, they did have the wings sweep rear ward pretty far (180deg from a depicted shot in the series when the F-mode wing is stowed for transport on one of the rafts) so in theory they could do VG-w/FS easily enough from a hardware perspective if HG doesn't consider this an AE. If they do we're left with a Forward Sweep, which brings its own set of issues.

Seto wrote:
Humans don't have force field tech in Robotech... and that'd only really work if they had enough control over the field topology to create a nice aerodynamic shape. The energy shields we've seen in RT are mostly either flat planar shields or spherical.

Spherical shell (even limited to just the body and not the wings) would still go a long way to improving the aerodynamics of the Beta. A ball goes a lot farther than a cube box when thrown after all (assuming the same size and weight and thrust).

Though I will go so far as to agree human force field tech in Robotech might not be up to the task.

[quote="Seto"T]That'd prevent the Beta from transforming.[/quote]
I think it would depend on how its executed to be honest. A nose-cone shroud to go on the docking beam to improve aerodynamics can take many forms and levels of sophistication. Nothing about it either needs to preclude transformation into Battloid Mode (Guardian Mode should be possible given the legs are known to be deployed in two separate episodes while connected/connecting-to the Alpha). It really depends on just how the UEEF intends for the Beta to utilize the shroud outside of fighter mode and to what extent the Beta can actually transform with something on the docking beam.

The main issues I see with it aren't transformation related, but rather the blockage of the centerline gun cluster and associated weight penalty impact on performance.


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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2020 11:45 am
  

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Monk

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slade the sniper wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
Upper pod: "Laser bombs" are probably meant to be some sort of precision guided missiles. I'm going to go with medium range missiles or alternately an improved sensor pod with the range of the Catseye and the upgrades of the newer Defender Destroid.

-POUNCER

Maybe it is supposed to be Laser Guided Bombs...? Medium warhead, gravity bombs, +3 to hit?

-STS


But why would laser guided bombs launch from above the vehicle? If it isn't the bombs but the laser painters it still doesn't make sense as the painters should be under the vehicle as well. I have wonder if they're supposed to be like to proton torpedoes, they looked "lasery" and torpedos... yeah I got nothing for justifying "laser bombs".

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 16, 2020 2:32 pm
  

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Knight

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ShadowLogan wrote:
I agree there is no magic bullet that will solve all the problems the Beta has due to its design. Some are more fixable than others (MM-20/16 to just straight MM-48 for ex.) and others really require a whole sale new platform to really address (ex. aerodynamics) but still some level of mitigation is better than none.

The "more fixable" one you cited is literally just undoing an error made by the uRRG "researchers"... but the problem I keep coming back to is what's fixable isn't enough to take the Beta into the realm of "actually good" as a combat aircraft, most of which relate to its base design and transformation.



ShadowLogan wrote:
Plasma/forward jets is certainly something they can pull off with some minor modification. Weather it is worth it is another matter.

What I'm getting at is VFC isn't effective unless it's done in combination with airframe shaping... you need to be able to inject the gas at the front of the aircraft to produce those vortices that assist with lift and streamline airflow over the body, and the Beta's nose isn't nearly far enough ahead of its body to make that a viable approach.



ShadowLogan wrote:
And what prevents it from increasing the existing range it has? Though I disagree with the depiction in TSC, they did have the wings sweep rear ward pretty far (180deg from a depicted shot in the series when the F-mode wing is stowed for transport on one of the rafts) so in theory they could do VG-w/FS easily enough from a hardware perspective if HG doesn't consider this an AE. If they do we're left with a Forward Sweep, which brings its own set of issues.

Mostly, the design of the arm... if you increase the sweep forward you're cutting into space reserved for the triple-barrel beam guns and the hands.

With the Beta's poor aerodynamic profile, the additional instability generated by a forward-swept wing will give minor gains in terms of reducing drag from wingtip vortices but at the cost of sacrificing most of the aircraft's stability, making it harder to recover from stalls, and increasing the risk of unrecoverable stalls due to aeroelastic wing deformation.

TBH, what the Beta needs isn't an increase in the sweep of its existing VG wing... it needs a delta wing. It needs to extend the wing's leading edge forward and outward to form a compound delta or a cranked arrow delta wing. That'll dramatically increase its payload and fuel capacity, reduce its stall speed, and make it more stable and efficient in flight. Basically, we need to take the Beta and half turn it back into the Span Loader. The additional wing surface can fold back over the forearm to be used as a supplementary antiprojectile shield.



ShadowLogan wrote:
Spherical shell (even limited to just the body and not the wings) would still go a long way to improving the aerodynamics of the Beta. A ball goes a lot farther than a cube box when thrown after all (assuming the same size and weight and thrust).

At the same diameter, sure... but the diameter of the shield "ball" would be bigger than the maximum cross-section of the Beta, leading to a potential increase in drag.

Whether that's even viable given the impermeability of energy shields in Robotech is another question... it's not going to do the Beta any good if thrust can't escape the shield and intake air for its engines can't enter. They'll turn the shield on and just fall out of the sky because they're not producing thrust in the same frame of reference anymore. Ideally what you'd want is something more like the shields from Star Trek that are a nice aerodynamic lozenge shape (on Federation ships anyway) and are variable and permeable enough to allow reaction mass to exit the shield perimeter.



ShadowLogan wrote:
I think it would depend on how its executed to be honest.

You're the one who said like the one in Gundam Wing...



Zer0 Kay wrote:
slade the sniper wrote:
Pouncer wrote:
Upper pod: "Laser bombs" are probably meant to be some sort of precision guided missiles. I'm going to go with medium range missiles or alternately an improved sensor pod with the range of the Catseye and the upgrades of the newer Defender Destroid.

-POUNCER

Maybe it is supposed to be Laser Guided Bombs...? Medium warhead, gravity bombs, +3 to hit?

-STS


But why would laser guided bombs launch from above the vehicle? If it isn't the bombs but the laser painters it still doesn't make sense as the painters should be under the vehicle as well. I have wonder if they're supposed to be like to proton torpedoes, they looked "lasery" and torpedos... yeah I got nothing for justifying "laser bombs".

Yeah, the guide laser oscillator for a laser-guided bomb needs to have a clear and unobstructed view of the target... which is why they're usually mounted ventrally or on the leading edge of the wing.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2020 11:57 am
  

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Knight

Joined: Thu Mar 30, 2006 10:50 am
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Seto wrote:
The "more fixable" one you cited is literally just undoing an error made by the uRRG "researchers"... but the problem I keep coming back to is what's fixable isn't enough to take the Beta into the realm of "actually good" as a combat aircraft, most of which relate to its base design and transformation.

I am not arguing over the MM-16/20 v MM-48 example, but it is the one canon issue that is easiest to resolve where "Laser Bomb Launcher" can go several ways given what information is available.

Seto wrote:
What I'm getting at is VFC isn't effective unless it's done in combination with airframe shaping... you need to be able to inject the gas at the front of the aircraft to produce those vortices that assist with lift and streamline airflow over the body, and the Beta's nose isn't nearly far enough ahead of its body to make that a viable approach.

Such approaches have been looked at for blunt-body designs, which is why I suggest it since the Beta is pretty blunt in terms of aerodynamics. And to get the best results would require it to work with other adjustments, well like I said there is no magic bullet to solve all the Beta's issues, which means you are going to need several "bullets" at least working together to mitigate the issues as much as possible.

Seto wrote:
Mostly, the design of the arm... if you increase the sweep forward you're cutting into space reserved for the triple-barrel beam guns and the hands.

I do not see how. The Beta's natural transformation is for the wings to sweep forward and to lock into place inside the forearm (and stick out near the elbow due to length). All a Variable Geometry Wing with a forward sweep would have to do is be able to lock into position at designated points using the transformation system's known arc. A rear-sweeping action like TSC shows would run into issues to (unless you can make the location of the pivot point change forward)

As for stability in flight of a FSW, that can be an issue, but one that solutions exist and some might already be present given the Beta is a tail-less vehicle so it already has stability issues.

As for a New Wing. That is certainly an option to replace the existing wing with a better optimized one. One could even invoke shape-shifting memory materials in the role (and if they are on the wings, we could put them elsewhere).

Seto wrote:
You're the one who said like the one in Gundam Wing...

The GW examples use their MS-mode shields to create a more aerodynamic flying vehicle when they transform than could be achieved without it. Which is the effect I am trying to do with the Beta, put something on the docking beam to give a more aerodynamic shape than it has without it. The execution of such an approach with the Beta/Tread leaves a lot of room to work with since it could take many forms each with their own impacts on performance and capabilities.


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2020 5:29 am
  

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Monk

Joined: Tue Jul 06, 2004 1:59 pm
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Yeah... nevermind that a bomb is a free fall device so putting it in a tube facing foward, above your fighter shall only result in heartache. Maybe in space they fly toward the target then open the bay and hit reverse thrusters so the bombs exit the bay and travel toward their target at max speed. I was about to say that was dumb but a non powered explosive would be much harder to detect than a missile

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Kept us laughing until the end. -The Fifth Business (In loving Memory of the teleport thread)


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2020 5:34 pm
  

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Knight

Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 6:36 am
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Comment: "My theories appall you, my heresies outrage you, I never answer letters, and you don't like my tie."
Zer0 Kay wrote:
Yeah... nevermind that a bomb is a free fall device so putting it in a tube facing foward, above your fighter shall only result in heartache. Maybe in space they fly toward the target then open the bay and hit reverse thrusters so the bombs exit the bay and travel toward their target at max speed.

Yeah... a gravity bomb deployment system above your aircraft's fuselage is asking for trouble.

One of the major design flaws in the TLEAD/Beta is that its bomb bay's deployment mechanism is a gravity feed system supported by rollers inside the chutes. It won't function at all in zero-g, and what the bombs were in the OSM wouldn't do any good in space either. Napalm is not a particularly effective weapon in a vacuum.



Zer0 Kay wrote:
I was about to say that was dumb but a non powered explosive would be much harder to detect than a missile

Eh... it depends on how close you're deploying the bombs from. Obviously a bomber flying right above an enemy ship is going to get noticed pretty quickly.

Star Wars: the Last Jedi has a very drawn out scene showing precisely why bombers in space are a bad idea.

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Zer0 Kay wrote:
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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2020 5:38 pm
  

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Palladin

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Seto Kaiba wrote:
Zer0 Kay wrote:
Yeah... nevermind that a bomb is a free fall device so putting it in a tube facing foward, above your fighter shall only result in heartache. Maybe in space they fly toward the target then open the bay and hit reverse thrusters so the bombs exit the bay and travel toward their target at max speed.

Yeah... a gravity bomb deployment system above your aircraft's fuselage is asking for trouble.

One of the major design flaws in the TLEAD/Beta is that its bomb bay's deployment mechanism is a gravity feed system supported by rollers inside the chutes. It won't function at all in zero-g, and what the bombs were in the OSM wouldn't do any good in space either. Napalm is not a particularly effective weapon in a vacuum.



Zer0 Kay wrote:
I was about to say that was dumb but a non powered explosive would be much harder to detect than a missile

Eh... it depends on how close you're deploying the bombs from. Obviously a bomber flying right above an enemy ship is going to get noticed pretty quickly.

Star Wars: the Last Jedi has a very drawn out scene showing precisely why bombers in space are a bad idea.


Correction, why THAT type of bomber is a bad idea....Rogue One shows a more high speed bombing run can work and be if the target isn't massively shielded.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2020 6:42 pm
  

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Knight

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jaymz wrote:
Correction, why THAT type of bomber is a bad idea....Rogue One shows a more high speed bombing run can work and be if the target isn't massively shielded.

Uh, what? I'm pretty sure I know the scene you're thinking of... and that's a missile attack by fighters, not a bombing run.

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Zer0 Kay wrote:
Damn you for anticipating my question. I've really got to unfoe you, your information is far more valuable than my sanity when dealing with your blunt callousness. :)


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2020 7:10 pm
  

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Palladin

Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2009 8:33 pm
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Comment: Yeah yeah yeah just give me my damn XP already :)
They bomb the shield gate.

The attack on the destroyer was ion torpedoes yes.

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