Author Topic: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune  (Read 4386 times)

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Offline Dilmah G

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RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
The Battle of Neptune



Operation Fortune is beginning to unravel. Defections paralyse the GTVA 14th Battlegroup as the true nature of the reunion is laid bare. Scattered reports of inter-dimensional space travel cause panic throughout the GTVA Security Council, as it now finds itself at war with the United Earth Federation.

Fly as Ensign Callum Rahman, a rookie pilot aboard the GTD Meridian, as Admiral Cyrus Severanti leads the vanguard of the GTVA in an operation to seize Neptune.

Tags: Blue Planet, fan fiction, military fiction. Estimated completion time: 20-25 minutes. Single mission standalone campaign. Balanced for Medium and Hard Difficulties.

Experience the first major battle of the War in Heaven through GTVA eyes for the first time. The final version of the mission first glimpsed here.

Features:

- All new intelligence data developed by the GTD Meridian's Intelligence Cell. Understand the war as a young GTVA pilot would have.

- New HUD warning and missile lock tones taken from modern fighter aircraft.

- Ability to activate HUD Radar Icons thanks to the work of Svedalrain, Lafiel, and MitoPL.

- Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System (AFATADS). Call for Trebuchet fire from GTVA heavy assault wings on UEF gunships. Inspired by real-life targeting and infra-red guidance software.

- Realistic battle chatter and mission briefs based on actual military experience.

- Checkpoints! Courtesy of Admiral MS and Goober5000's script.

- Glossary of military terms. Available from Tech Room->Database->Intelligence.

Requirements:

- FSO Build 20.1.0-RC3 in order to properly utilise the checkpoint system.
- Blue Planet: Complete installed.

Once installed, select campaign "The Battle of Neptune" from the campaign room to play.

Known Bugs:

- Loadout not carrying over from briefing to loaded checkpoint. This is due to the way the checkpoint script saves ship data - the player's loadout, health, position, and orientation (as well as afterburner and energy reserves) are all saved at once. What this means is that when loading from a checkpoint, the mission will load the player's loadout as saved when the checkpoint was reached, and ignore whatever you have set in the mission briefing (if this is different to what you were bombed up with when that checkpoint data was saved). This unfortunately means the only way to change your loadout and have it reflected in-mission is to select it in the mission briefing screen, and then boot the mission from the very beginning if you'd like to play it with a different loadout. This isn't really a bug as much as it is just the way checkpoints ought to work, but it is something to keep in mind when trying to skin the cat differently mid-playthrough.

With thanks to Renegade Paladin, Erebus Alpha, Asteroth, and AdDur for their extensive testing of the mission through development to release; The E and Darius for their testing and creative guidance; and Ertanax for their creative input.

NB: Medium Difficulty includes a number of UEF handicaps in order to support gameplay. Play on Hard Difficulty to have the authentic GTVA experience.

« Last Edit: January 18, 2021, 03:59:43 am by Dilmah G »

 

Offline Dilmah G

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Quote from: GTVA Restricted Network
Login: 7045713 CAPT Partridge, Monika

E-Mail Client: 1 UNREAD
------------------------------------------------------------
TO: CAPT Partridge, Monika
FROM: RADM Lopez, Anita

SUBJ: FW: Doctrine Note – ACM 4-5-1

CAG,

Please see below for latest update to ACM 4-5-1. I note comments from SOC pilots on aspect and shield management with great interest. Please disseminate to all Squadron COs aboard.

All measures to enhance the survivability of our pilots are of the utmost importance to me.

"DOCTRINE NOTE – ACM 4-5-1: AIR COMBAT MANOEUVRING (SOL THEATRE)

Recent analysis by GTVA Fleet HQ elements into aircrew casualties has uncovered that a significant percentage (34%) of all casualties are a direct result of combat against the UEF’s Uriel Heavy Assault platform – GTVA reporting name: FOXHOUND. Armed with this information, GTVA Knowledge Centre has conducted a series of interviews with a number of Special Operations Command personnel, as well as select Squadron Commanding Officers from the active fleet in order to derive lessons regarding aircrew survivability.

“The Uriel has no doctrinal comparison to the Shivan ships that we train against. None. The key element of the Uriel’s threat profile that takes a lot of pilots by surprise is the dorsal turret. Some of the activities conducted by the Special Operations community have discovered that this turret is identical in cyclic rate of fire and effective range to the primary we know as the Vulcan. What does this mean for the average Alliance pilot? It means that saddling up on a Uriel inside of effective Vulcan range is a death sentence – we found that out as early as the first Battle of Neptune. The only measure that I’ve seen work - and I’ve had the misfortune of trying this myself – is to surge power to frontal shields using the ETS module as the turret begins to fire. This can give you some valuable seconds to engage with your own primaries or disengage.” CMDR X, SOC

“If you ask me about the Uriel, I’ve got two things to tell you: stay the f**k away, and if you can’t do that, never, ever, go head-on. I was a part of the Heavy Assault 2386 concept testing, and engaging with the Trebuchet weapons system was far and above the most effective way to engage the Uriel. One of the most instructive experiences I had in Sol was very early on in the war – back when the Erinyes was still our preferred platform. We were executing a deep strike on [REDACTED] and got bounced by a three-ship of Uriels. My wingman, let’s call him Rabbit, turned hot for the merge – the way we all learned in the ACM TSMs. I was below him, only because I was late in my turn…and just as we entered about 1.5 clicks, the lead Uriel engaged with six f******g guns and disintegrated his hull before I could blink. The lucky man he is, he managed to punch out, but his fighter was gone in seconds. That was the day I learned never, ever, to go head on with a gunship.” CMDR Z, SOC"


Regards,

Rear Admiral Anita Lopez
Commanding Officer, GTD Carthage
Combat Evaluation Unit

Quote from: GTVA Air Combat Manoeuvring 1-0-0: Introduction to ACM Fundamentals
CH 1: GTVA Brevity Code

The importance of brevity and a common operating picture of terminology cannot be overstated during ACM. All aircrew should ensure they are conversant with the below terms and can recall their meanings under significant cognitive duress.

AFATADS: Advanced Field Artillery Targeting and Direction System. Refers to the network and target acquisition architecture used by all GTVA vessels to produce firing solutions with both long-range missile and beam weapons systems. Forms spine of the TAG system. Also allows target acquisition by GTVA spacecraft for select ordnance types from platforms such as the GTF Ares.
As Fragged: Wing/Ship is performing action as per the Air Tasking Order. I.e. as ordered.
BLUFOR: Blue force. Refers to friendly forces.
BRAA: Bearing, Range, Altitude, Aspect. Taken from 21st Century ACM vernacular, BRAA is the format that all contact calls are relayed by AWACS and Mission Command controllers. E.g. “Contact, fighter wing, 120, 2 kilometres, low, hot.” Bearing and altitudes given relative to receiving callsign’s axis.
Bracket: Manoeuvre where friendly fighters will position on opposite sides of a target.
Commit/committed: Ship/Wing intends to engage specified target.
Contact: New sensor contact.
Cold: Given wing/ship is heading away from friendly ships. Opposite of Hot.
Cleared Hot: Ordnance release is authorised.
DAMCON: Damage Control teams aboard a given vessel.
Defensive: Ship is manoeuvring defensively with respect to an active threat. E.g. “Alpha 1’s defensive!”
FENCE In/Out: Refers to cockpit switches being set for in/out of combat. Mnemonic for Fire-control system/ECM/navigation/communications/emitters.
Fox: Missile launch. Fox 1 – Semi-radar guided missile. Used when target is being acquired by another ship, such as through the AFATADS interface. Fox 2 – IR guided missile, such as the MX-64 Rockeye. Fox 3 – Radar guided missile, such as the GTM-4a Tornado.
Grandslam: All hostile spacecraft of a given formation have been destroyed.
Guns: Laser fire from friendly spacecraft.
Heavy: Refers either to heavy assault/bomber variants, or a wing of more than four ships.
Hot: Given wing/ship is heading toward friendly ships. Opposite of Cold.
Merge: Friendly and hostile ships now in same visual arena.
Popup: Radar contact that has suddenly appeared inside of a specified range.
Press: Directive to continue attack, mutual support will be maintained.
Rifle: Torpedo launched from friendly bomber.
Ripple: Two or more munitions fired in close succession.
RTB: Return to base.
SATCOM: Satellite communications array. Primary radio communication means for all alliance vessels.
Separate/Separating: Given wing/ship is departing the field of engagement.
Spike: Enemy radar lock warning.
Splash: Enemy craft destroyed.
SPOTREP: Spot report. Used by reconnaissance units to transmit sightings of enemy high value targets.
Tally: Enemy ship sighted.
Visual: Friendly ship sighted.
Winchester: No ordnance remaining.

Quote from: Capital Ship Fire Control Orders
Capital Ship FCOs are the verbal format by which Battle and Assault Group commanders call for beam fire on designated targets. This is generally executed at the beginning and end of ship-to-ship engagements in order to synchronise beam fire from independent ships. They follow the format GROUP-TARGET-TYPE OF FIRE-NO. SALVOS.

An example may be “Battlegroup, reference the Ravana, beam-fire, cross-fire, three and three. Fire when ready!” In this instance, the battlegroup’s target is the SD Ravana. The commander directs for beam cannons to be employed in a cross-fire pattern, aiming to have all beams intersect a given point to maximise damage. This is as opposed to frontal-fire which gives freedom of fire pattern to each vessel’s commander. Three and three stipulates three bursts with three seconds in between. This is the standard opening salvo for most ship-to-ship engagements.

Aircrew should always monitor the FIRES NET during ship-to-ship engagements so that they can avoid beam fire where possible.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2021, 04:29:49 am by Dilmah G »

 

Offline Colonol Dekker

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Now I like the look of this.
Also....
Quote
- Realistic battle chatter and mission briefs based on actual military experience.



Keen to count expletives 😂⚔️👌

 
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Not a small amount of pressure here at all, hopefully I'll eventually see the whole mission. Impressive stuff so far.

Some issues I've had so far, on 20201226 if it matters:
- Loading from the first checkpoint doesn't seem to stop the introductory message chains from playing
- there don't seem to be radar icons for any UEF ships when the enhanced HUD is turned on
- After I hit the checkpoint and then tried to start the mission over entirely, starting from the beginning appears to be broken, it never moves from the initial shot of the cutscene.
- When instead skipping the cutscene but not loading the checkpoint, I get two sets of music layered over each other.
- My first run of the first stage it felt like Alpha and Beta were guardianed. If they were, they don't get it turned on when loading from the first checkpoint.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2020, 11:33:49 am by EatThePath »
"if disco is dead then I am the laser lich"
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Offline Ertanax

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
WELL DONE DILMAH FOR RELEASING THIS!

It's even better than it was during testing. Thank you!  :yes:

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Giant hand descending from the void, burning bright red with reentry friction, slamming thunderously onto the "install" button

 

Offline Dilmah G

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Now I like the look of this.
Also....
Keen to count expletives 😂⚔️👌
May need a calculator, my friend!  :lol:

Not a small amount of pressure here at all, hopefully I'll eventually see the whole mission. Impressive stuff so far.

Some issues I've had so far, on 20201226 if it matters:
- Loading from the first checkpoint doesn't seem to stop the introductory message chains from playing
- there don't seem to be radar icons for any UEF ships when the enhanced HUD is turned on
- After I hit the checkpoint and then tried to start the mission over entirely, starting from the beginning appears to be broken, it never moves from the initial shot of the cutscene.
- When instead skipping the cutscene but not loading the checkpoint, I get two sets of music layered over each other.
- My first run of the first stage it felt like Alpha and Beta were guardianed. If they were, they don't get it turned on when loading from the first checkpoint.
Yo, I'm really sorry this happened to you. None of my testers or I experienced this, but I believe I've tracked at least the checkpoint related issues back to some weird behaviour with my "stage variable" that now appears to cause issues when previously it didn't - I can't exactly explain why this occurred, only that at least on my end after changing some subtleties with it, it's fine now. Definitely let me know if it continues to screw up on you.

RE: Alpha and Beta
Spoiler:
Alpha and Beta definitely were guardianed. This is throwing me as the event to guardian-threshold them and their vital subsystems returns true as soon as Beta enter the mission. Therefore, as long as Beta are in the mission (they arrive when the Meridian arrives), Alpha and Beta should have their sweet, sweet plot-armour. Again, it's not an issue that ever occurred during testing.
Let me know after this latest update whether you or anyone else still have this issue. I have a fix in mind if it still doesn't want to play ball.

Giant hand descending from the void, burning bright red with reentry friction, slamming thunderously onto the "install" button
:heart:

 
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Yo, I'm really sorry this happened to you. ...Let me know after this latest update whether you or anyone else still have this issue. I have a fix in mind if it still doesn't want to play ball.

No harm done in my case anyway, I know how squirrely these things can be. Things happen and I've got patience for bugs.

Will report when I play it again and see how these issues stand now.
"if disco is dead then I am the laser lich"
"...[Warmachine] keeps changing as fast as EatThePath can force the engine to do his dark bidding..."

 
Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Man that was intense.  What a bloodbath!  I was getting my ass handed to me from start to finish.  Thank goodness for checkpoints!

Very hard, but very well crafted.  Good immersion.  The Erinyes moves like a slug compared to the UEF fighters!  The Kents wipe out my bombers within a single pass, and there are too many for me to take out at range.  I was using twin balors so I could put more power into shields and speed, one bank of harpoons and one of trebs.  I think that was not a good plan.  I can't keep a bead on targets for long enough for the Balor to wear them down without taking a huge amount of damage myself.  Maybe with all Kaysers and two banks of trebs?  The harpoons hardly ever make their target even when doubled, so I don't think I'd miss them.  Maybe a bank of Furies?

I could appreciate that the UEF fighters were vastly superior over their GTVA counterparts in BP2 when I was flying them.  But this really rubs your face in it, doesn't it.  At least when flying Capella-era fighters.

TL;DR, thx, send moar!
"Any idiot can face a crisis; it is this day to day living that wears you out." – Anton Chekhov

 

Offline Dilmah G

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Yo, glad to hear you enjoyed it!

Spoiler:
I agree, the Erinyes doesn't have the manoeuvrability to go toe-to-toe with anything apart from an Uhlan. There is a Perseus available if you want it, and some of my testers preferred it - but personally I found the Perseus to be paper-thin compared to the effects of UEF weapons. Double Kaysers can be great fun, and even a single bank of Kaysers can help make every time you get shots on target really count. I'm also a big fan of rolling a bank of Tempests, though the advantage of the Harpoon is that if you can't match the Kent for turn-rate, you can keep it in front of you and just slow down long enough to get a lock with the Harpoon and go to town until it does - and also by that point, be behind the enemy fighter.

I'm glad the mission's given you a new perspective. Being a GTVA pilot during the opening months of the war would've been terrifying!



 

Offline crizza

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
I only beat the mission on easy, but I tinkered with it on medium a bit, furthest I got was the bomber assault on the Hecate.
Realizing the danger the Kent poses, I took Trebs with me, but even after highlighting them I maged to take down one, maybe two at range.
All Balors in the Erinyes does not do enough damage fast enough, so I took a Balors and Kaysers, even with weapons energy lowered, this gives you enough damage to take down the Uhlans and Kents with ease.
But having a Kent evade a Treb.... holy, what is the lofetime of that missile? :D
I realy like the odds the Tevs face. Two Karunas and a four Sanctus' and I havent even watched if the two Diomedes actually get to use their beams.
Fun thing it was to see Simms and Karen, although those two managed to jump out.


Spoiler:
Oh, and is the main beam of the Meridian forced to be destroyed?
What did force the Tevs off the field in the end? Another massed Durga strike or was the Toutatis coming?

Check out my blog:

http://geo.schulzbert.de/

 

Offline Dilmah G

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Ooft! Yeah, the GTVA fighter pilots definitely have their work cut out for them in this one!

The ol' Kayser/Balor combo works a treat for sure. Honestly, the Kent is just objectively a bad time no matter what you're flying. :lol:
Spoiler:
The best way I found to deal with them is to equip Tempests and go to manual throttle control once you're dogfighting with one. When they try and out-turn you, chop the throttle to nil and pull as hard into the Kent as you can - that should allow you to momentarily beat its rate of turn and hose it with Kayser/Balor fire and Tempest spam, which can make those valuable seconds you're able to hit it count. Generally with 2-3 passes (or one if you're really lucky!) you can blow it back to Mars!

This engagement is a great one to showcase where the strengths and weaknesses of each side are at the start of the war. The UEF warships largely get torn to smithereens by beam cannons once they close, but their gauss cannons and torpedo launchers have the capacity to just tear GTVA warships out from about twice their beam range. On the flip-side, as you no doubt found out, UEF fighters outclass GTVA fighters by several orders of magnitude. Glad you enjoyed the shout out to our favourite Martians!

In terms of the Meridian's main beam - if you decide to disarm CruRon Alpha's gauss cannons/help destroy them quickly, it can actually survive quite a while. If you let CruRon A live for any extended period of time, their gauss cannons will destroy that beam cannon very quickly. Again, one of the main advantages the UEF have is their ability to disarm GTVA ships from afar.

In terms of why they withdraw, in particular it's the loss of the Arabella to the last wave of gunships/bombers. But compounding that is the fact that by that point, the Meridian has generally taken heavy damage with staggering amounts of casualties, and the fighter screen has been whittled right back. My reading of the lore is that Calder was unwilling to commit the Toutatis at this point. In any case, Happy New Year!


 

Offline 5thAce

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Just have to say that this is very well done, incredibly challenging but satisfyingly so. Also well done with the checkpoints, definitely placed in good intervals throughout the mission. I honestly thought it would be easy as a GTVA pilot, I mean no anti fighter beams or cap beams to worry about from the UEF. UEF fighters though absolutely outmatch their GTVA counterparts. This just makes me wish for a campaign as a GTVA pilot during the war, so as to contrast WiH.

Spoiler:
I was hoping that maybe a Narayana would have shown up at some point, kind of how it is in the original mission from all those years ago. Would have been interesting to see the Meridian's reaction to that ship, maybe even believing it to be the UEF's destroyer class, as I don't believe they know about the Solaris at this point.

 

Offline Dilmah G

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Cheers, glad you enjoyed it! As far as a GTVA campaign in the WiH-verse goes, you might be getting your wish in the coming year...;)

Spoiler:
That's very true. If I ever do another version of the mission I may drop one of those in!

 

Offline Colonol Dekker

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
#TEV4LIFE
#BuntuScum

 

Offline pim

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Ouch, that was intense. Tomorrow let's try again but first I have to check my diapers (that sirens, that sirens...) :-).
BTW those acronyms and phrases are realistic? Except "Holy ****" I don't understand a thing but it sounds cool in any case.

 

Offline Colonol Dekker

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Hey Dilmah, I love your work.  One teeny suggestion, when the Theodecia calls EOD down to deck 6,  they should say "we've got UXO" or "we've got a UXB", not "we've got a UXO".  Its not the said thing but I love and forgive you x

 

Offline Dilmah G

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Ouch, that was intense. Tomorrow let's try again but first I have to check my diapers (that sirens, that sirens...) :-).
BTW those acronyms and phrases are realistic? Except "Holy ****" I don't understand a thing but it sounds cool in any case.
:lol: It’s the authentic Tev experience for sure! So the acronyms are all taken from current Western doctrine and the dialogue is a mixture of watered-down NATO aircrew jargon and some phrases that are adapted from ground operations. I can put together a quick glossary if you like? I imagine you’re not the only person to think that!

Hey Dilmah, I love your work.  One teeny suggestion, when the Theodecia calls EOD down to deck 6,  they should say "we've got UXO" or "we've got a UXB", not "we've got a UXO".  Its not the said thing but I love and forgive you x
For sure, that makes perfect sense! Cheers dude, I’ll put it into the next update. I have definitely said that at work before and I assume the engineers must’ve let it slide because they knew I was a crayon-eater... :D

  

Offline pim

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Quote
I can put together a quick glossary if you like? I imagine you’re not the only person to think that!

Yes, glossary in a Tech Room sounds like an interesting addition. Nice finishing touch:-).

 

Offline Colonol Dekker

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Re: RELEASE: The Battle of Neptune
Hey Dilmah, I love your work.  One teeny suggestion, when the Theodecia calls EOD down to deck 6,  they should say "we've got UXO" or "we've got a UXB", not "we've got a UXO".  Its not the said thing but I love and forgive you x
For sure, that makes perfect sense! Cheers dude, I’ll put it into the next update. I have definitely said that at work before and I assume the engineers must’ve let it slide because they knew I was a crayon-eater... :D

Don't apologise,  its allowed to slip but I want you to be better than that 😜👍