The speeds ingame are obviously rediculously slow. I don't remember much about the various cutscenes and ANIs, nor do I presently have either FS game installed, but I'm fairly certain that at some point I saw a fighter travel from surface to space in a fairly short amount of time. Could someone point me toward any animations that they think might contain high velocities or accelerations like the one I referenced? Any clues would be easier than trying to aquire all of them and watching each individually.
If I'm reading the ship table correctly, the Herc II has a forward acceleration of just over 15 m/s/s, sans afterburner. I haven't figured out how to read afterburner accel. Disregarding any nongame evidence, it is reasonable to assume from this data that they have very limited fuel and intertial dampening, so comfortable accelerations are not huge for sci-fi but quite large compared to present-day vehicles, but velocities are extremely limited for fuel conservation. Another possibility is a magnetic scoop system like in Wing Commander.
It occurs to me that velocities and ranges might not be correct in the first place because of the weapons. Many of the weapons are described as actual lasers, but they are represented as slow-moving glowy blobs. If these ships really do carry lasers, and said lasers have to be lead rather than simply point-and-shot, then we're talking about really huge ranges and speeds. This, of course, begs the question of what beams weapons really are, considering that they hit instantaneously ingame. On the other hand, if I recall correctly the animations and such all use these slow moving blobs, so one has to question whether the animations are reliable as well.
Any thoughts on this? Am I even making sense?