Ramming, Collision Avoidance, New Weapons

Airships: Conquer the Skies
24 Feb 2015, 12:28 p.m.

The new version of Airships is about to drop, and as I said before, it mostly concentrates on visual improvements. There are, however, some gameplay changes too, including some new weaponry.

Collision Avoidance

Something that came out of recent playtesting was that some players really hated the ships' lack of collision avoidance. If you told an airship to fly from point A to B, it would do so, happily crashing into everything in its path. This was a bit strange and could be pretty frustrating. So now, airships automatically cancel their move orders if they're about to collide with something otherwise. This isn't foolproof: it's possible they can't brake in time. But it definitely reduces the number of unintentional collisions.

What about intentional collisions, though, also known as ramming? For that there's a new command next to "Move" explicitly called "Ram". It works exactly like the move command used to: the ship moves to its target spot with no concern for collisions. Note that the best way to ram an opponent still is to first get on the same level as it, and then choose a move target significantly past it, so that your ship impacts in a straight line and at full speed.

An added bonus: more dramatic crew shouts.

Bombs and Turrets

This is something I'd planned to put in for ages, and it kept on getting pushed back. So in the end I went and added these new weapons, and it turned out to be a lot easier than I thought.

Bomb Bay

  • 60 blast damage
  • 5 second reload
  • 500 accuracy
  • 10° fire arc pointing down
  • 20 cost

These do a lot of damage, but your target needs to be directly below you. They also don't move very fast, and aren't super-accurate, but they work great for smashing apart large defensive buildings for little cost.

Dorsal / Ventral Turret

  • 70 piercing damage
  • 5 second reload
  • 500 accuracy
  • 190° fire arc pointing up
  • 120 cost

Turreted weapons, finally! Compared to a normal cannon these are much bulkier and more expensive, but they're flexible and pack quite a punch. And of course, the dorsal one is great for shooting down bombers, while the ventral one is a nice addition to a heavy bomber...

Just for comparison, here's the same stats for a normal cannon:

  • 40 piercing damage
  • 3 second reload
  • 375 accuracy
  • 90° fire arc pointing forward
  • 75 cost

So that's what's coming towards you very soon indeed.