General Question Damaging the Space Shuttle - orbDamage or dll?

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Ashaman42

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I have been somewhat spoilt by the brilliant XR series of ships from dBeachy but in my current set of scenarios I'm looking to use the Space Shuttle as my main ship.

Now I can currently re-enter backwards with the bay doors open to no ill effect which is a tad unrealistic :p Are there any addons that give a reasonably realistic damage model to the Shuttle?

I have the orbDamage addon with the included settings for the stock atlantis;

MaxAccel = 35
MinAccel = -18
MaxDynPressure = 300000
MaxFlux = 700000000
MaxG = 10
MinG = -6
MaxGroundVel = 170
MinLandingVerticalVel = -4
DamageDelay = 5

are these reasonable values? Does anyone have any better ones?

Alternatively how much coding goes into dll-ing a damage module, would something along the lines of the heating/damage from the XR series be a huge task (not concerned with the fuzzy logic, just a max temp would be fine).

Apologies for the wall of text, hopefully I've made sense.
 

Donamy

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Personally, I don't see the point.
 

Ashaman42

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Don't see the point to having damage enabled or for using the shuttle?
 

simonpro

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Beware, the easily offended moral brigade will probably be here to complain about this idea shortly ;)

(Edit) Aaah, as I was saying.
 

Usquanigo

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Beware, the easily offended moral brigade will probably be here to complain about this idea shortly ;)

(Edit) Aaah, as I was saying.

There does certainly seem to be a VERY odd anti-damage/combat mindset here. It's actually rather disconcerting.

I'm "sensitive" about the Columbia, it was my favorite shuttle, and I LOVE that design. Last thing I'd want to do is intentionally simulate disasters or whatever. It's not a sick thrill, it's the challenge and reward.

The challenge to NOT burn up, and the reward of *knowing* that you did so.

It's the same with collisions. It's not about going around at "ramming speed(!)", it's about knowing that if you screw up, there are consequences and now you have to avoid them.

It's one thing to just "pretend" those consequences exist and try to do it "right", but that only goes so far. Inevitably short cuts will be taken and lazyness can set in. And ultimately, it's simply just not as thrilling or exciting when you know that you are only doing it "right" because you are choosing to pretend that you can't do it wrong (when the code clearly DOES allow that).

So that would be the point to having reasonable (if not truly accurate) damage modelling for the shuttle, and all ships, and collision detection as well.
 

Ashaman42

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Ok, I must admit I didn't even consider that people would be offended by this, is the problem that I'm wanting damage at all or that the damage is invovling the shuttle?
 

Donamy

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If I screw up, I know it. I don't need explosions, pieces flying off, or simulated people burning up to let me know. I just start the scenario over and try again. It's as close as It's going to get. It's not a moral issue with me. I just personally don't see the thrill at all. I know when I'm flying FSX, if I land hard, the gear will be damaged. I don't need a crumpled airplane to tell me that.
 

Ashaman42

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I can see what you're saying but when I enter with the XR series or the DGIV I have a temperature readout I can monitor to see how my reentry is going, a nice bit of feedback. I just feel something similar would improve 'my' shuttle experience.

Now if you don't feel the need for that then that's fine. I don't always know if I'm doing it right or not - yes it's fairly obvious that backwards with open bay doors is bad but on a normal reentry it's not always as clear.
 

Usquanigo

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If I screw up, I know it. I don't need explosions, pieces flying off, or simulated people burning up to let me know. I just start the scenario over and try again. It's as close as It's going to get. It's not a moral issue with me. I just personally don't see the thrill at all. I know when I'm flying FSX, if I land hard, the gear will be damaged. I don't need a crumpled airplane to tell me that.

It's about immersion (which I tried to explain). You do sound offended by the idea.

You can fly through an object or other ship. Yes, you can choose not to. You can choose to start over if you do that. But the bottom line is, it's not as immersive when those things are not accounted for. (and sometimes you are so busy with what's going on that you don't notice transgressions - trying to line up modules and have them slide into each other when they should bump when you are off and didn't notice until you looked outside, for example, or exceeding a heat or DynP limit on a craft, you may have done it and not known about it. The limits are artificially high then)

And.... on the flip side, if you are perfect in your flying, then such an addition (which is currently opt-in anyway) wouldn't affect you. :)

---------- Post added at 03:58 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:57 PM ----------

yes it's fairly obvious that backwards with open bay doors is bad but on a normal reentry it's not always as clear.

Exactly, it kills immersion when you can do that. Even if you would choose not to, the fact that you CAN is the issue.
 

Donamy

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I'm not offended at all, believe me. And you are right, I agree it has it's merit with the XR2, that is it's appeal for most people. You can use Orbiter any way you wish.

Dog fighting, now that's a whole other story !!
 

Hielor

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On the FSX note, FSX doesn't even really have "damage" in the "pieces falling off" or "explosions" sense. If you crash, it informs you that you crashed and halts the sim, then restarts the scenario.
 

Bj

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On the FSX note, FSX doesn't even really have "damage" in the "pieces falling off" or "explosions" sense. If you crash, it informs you that you crashed and halts the sim, then restarts the scenario.

Unless you have FS passengers, but even then it will-not simulate wings breaking off or something... the closest it gets to damage simulation, is landing on water or landing without the gear down. Whereas the normal FSX will just display something that says you crashed.
 

Hielor

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Unless you have FS passengers, but even then it will-not simulate wings breaking off or something... the closest it gets to damage simulation, is landing on water or landing without the gear down. Whereas the normal FSX will just display something that says you crashed.
Actually, many addon planes I've seen have an option where the wing can break off (and you can fiddle with the configs to get the default planes to do it, too), but it won't happen as a result of aerodynamic stress, only ground contact--at which point you can hardly see the wing fall off anyway since it's in the ground.
 

Donamy

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Crashing simulated RC planes, now there's a need to see damage.
 

Saturn V

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I'm not offended by the idea, but as far as "immersion," you know damned well that none of the shuttle commanders or pilots would've flown a reentry in the attitude you describe (backward with the bay doors open). So explain to me how this fits into the "immersion" argument. You want a realistic simulation of a shuttle reentry? Here's a 5 word tutorial: Don't fly it like that. THAT'S "immersion." Just because you CAN do something doesn't mean you SHOULD. I CAN go into the office tomorrow morning and punch my boss in the mouth. SHOULD I?

I'd be hard pressed to belive that flying an entry profile like the one you outlined and wanting to see the resulting breakup of the orbiter isn't cheap thrill-seeking. Do you really need to see a ship disintegrate to know you screwed the pooch?

If somebody makes a realistic damage add-on and you want to fly the shuttle through downtown Orlando at rush hour and nose-dive into KSC with it, be my guest.

I just wouldn't hold my breath waiting for it. Bottom line: Orbiter is about flying spacecraft, not destroying them.
 

spcefrk

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Part of what I enjoy about X-Plane is the support for flight failures. For the most part that's an engine out, flap locked down, control surface locked, wing section removed, etc... It's fun and instructive to learn not only how they affect flight and more importantly how much they affect flight.

X-Plane has the advantage of dealing with aircraft using a very good nonlinear 6-DOF with great atmospheric modeling. Orbiter uses a great albeit comparatively simple code to model atmospheric flight -- and rightfully so: the point is spaceflight, not atmospheric flight.

But eventually you have to return to the atmosphere. The problem is that there are much fewer survivable failures for reentering spacecraft than cruising aircraft. I'm all for supporting people who build addons that use damage modeling, but a complex damage system isn't nearly as important as say accurate high altitude atmospheric modeling.

The shuttle astronauts don't even pilot the shuttle during reentry. It's automatic. In fact, during a DoD mission (STS-119) in which there was a foam strike, Robert Gibson recalled:

"I knew that what would happen was, if we started to burn through we would change the drag on that wing," he said, "which is exactly what happened to Columbia. We would change the drag on the right wing and what we'd see happening is, we'd start seeing right elevon trim, you'd start seeing right aileron, if you will, trim, which means putting down the left elevon, moving the left elevon down.

"I knew we would start developing a split (between right and left wing elevon positions) if we had excessive drag over on the right side. The automatic system would try to trim it out with the elevons. That is one of the things we always watched on re-entry anyhow, because ... if you had half a degree of trim, something was wrong, you had a bunch of something going on if you had even half a degree. Normally, you wouldn't see even a quarter of a degree of difference on the thing.

"So I knew that that's what I was going to see if it started to go," Gibson said. "And therefore, that told me that I'd have at least 60 seconds to tell mission control what I thought of their analysis."
-- See: http://www.spaceflightnow.com/shuttle/sts119/090327sts27/ (A really interesting read actually)

If something went wrong, Gibson knew he'd have 60 seconds and there was nothing he could do about it. With something like the shuttle (or even a capsule) there just isn't enough margin on anything that it's worth modeling reentry with one wing, or reentry with the gear down, etc... Any burn through almost anywhere is a complete loss of aircraft. There's very nearly zero chance of survival if something fails either on lift-off or reentry.

So all that's really worth modeling on a reentry vehicle are the internal systems and there are plenty of fantastic examples of that, maybe my favorite being the DG-IV. I can't really think of a physical failure that doesn't result in loss of the vehicle except non-catastrophic decompression that would require the crew be suited up.
 

Oceanic

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i really can't see your point guys.

i'm not that skilled with the shuttle reentry, having especially trouble with the S-turns (the G-force has to be to high) so where is the down side having an add-on that tells me that i did something it wrong?

so if anyone has some configs for orbDamage please share them
 

Usquanigo

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I'm not offended by the idea, but as far as "immersion," you know damned well that none of the shuttle commanders or pilots would've flown a reentry in the attitude you describe (backward with the bay doors open). So explain to me how this fits into the "immersion" argument. You want a realistic simulation of a shuttle reentry? Here's a 5 word tutorial: Don't fly it like that. THAT'S "immersion." Just because you CAN do something doesn't mean you SHOULD. I CAN go into the office tomorrow morning and punch my boss in the mouth. SHOULD I?

I'd be hard pressed to belive that flying an entry profile like the one you outlined and wanting to see the resulting breakup of the orbiter isn't cheap thrill-seeking. Do you really need to see a ship disintegrate to know you screwed the pooch?

If somebody makes a realistic damage add-on and you want to fly the shuttle through downtown Orlando at rush hour and nose-dive into KSC with it, be my guest.

I just wouldn't hold my breath waiting for it. Bottom line: Orbiter is about flying spacecraft, not destroying them.

Ok, seriously, take a breath and calm down. Clearly, you ARE offended by the idea. The vitriol present in that response shows that.

You can't honestly expect me to beleive that you simply can not see the point of damage, can you? You don't seriously beleive that the only reason to have it is to intentional go around breaking things, do you?

It's really not rocket science. I've never done the backwards open method, but a friend was over and we were trying to get it down as carefully as possible and thought, hey, we did it. Then we accidentally noticed that the ET umbillical doors were open on one of them (just forgot about it). Then we got to wondering if such a shallow approach (required as we weren't using DAP or anything else) would actually work too. So we tested it - nearly straight down approach, as much speed as possible, and as little AoA as possible. And upon realizing that, no, you can't damage it, our "accomplishment" (previously) was ripped out from under us and it was that much less immersive and rewarding and enjoyable.

I'd be willing to bet this guy went through the same process. And also understand that the purpose is NOT to run around breaking things, but rather to make it that much more "realistic" and exciting (aka, immersive).

Just pretending doesn't cut it when it's obvious and known that you can't break it even if you DID try.

If it bothers you so much that you have to come in, attitude blaring, why not just ignore it instead? There's really no harm to trying to enhance realism, and there-by, the experience. Especially if it's only an option.

Gord lord........ :dry:
 
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