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Topic: Carrier Capture Proposal (Read 4007 times) previous topic - next topic

  • ArbitrarySketch
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Carrier Capture Proposal
So I have heard a lot of people on the forums talk about how much they want a Bengal or other carrier of some kind, but none of them really seem to have any practical idea of what they will do with it or how they will keep it operating when it is a persistent universe item and requires a large crew to operate and protect.  But I think a carrier as a refuel/repair point and command center for a one-time large scale operation like this would be perfect.  I really cannot think of any better practical use.  I use Bengal as an example, but I understand a good number of people would not feel right hijacking one from the UEE, even for as noble a cause as this, but any carrier would work in theory.  Even a Vanduul one.

A carrier would be a valuable asset for an operation like this, but obtaining it would be an operation of its own.  So below is my proposed carrier capture strategy, if we decide to try and grab a mobile command center/forward repair and refuel point.  Like most things, this could be changed depending on how game mechanics end up or as the commanding officers of the op see fit to adjust it.

- There would be three waves of players: An air wing, a sizable boarding party, and an engineer corps.

- The air wing would consist of Gladiators, Retaliators, and any other anti-capital ships for disabling the carrier, as well as a good number of fighters for handling any the carrier spits out. Once the majority of the carrier's shields, weapons, and engines are disabled and the fighter compliment exhausted, the boarding party moves in.

- Boarding marines would be grouped up in the cargo areas of the boarding craft to reduce the number of ships that have to enter the carrier's hangar.  Forum Feedback from Wingman's Hangar ep 43 confirmed that gathering players in a cargo hold will be doable.  My first thought was to use Constellations, but I don't know if there will be a way to unload more than one person at a time from one. Freelancers might be a better option due to the loading ramp style bay, but a combination of both may work just as well. The boarding party would be divided into squads to fan out and secure the ship a piece at a time. The air wing would likely have to remain outside to prevent any rescue attempts from outside NPCs.

- Once the ship is clear and secure, the engineers would be able to move in to enact repairs to the ship. At this point, the fighters from the air wing would be able to land, repair, and refuel. Repair time on the carrier will not be certain, hence the few days before the operation to repair all systems to full. During this time, the ship would need to be crewed at all times and kept in a region relatively safe from player and pirate raids alike. Command and duty shifts would likely have to be established in advance, as well as an operating crew assigned for the operation itself.  Anyone who does not want to risk their own ship in the operation would make great crewmen for the carrier or for another player's multi-person ship.

Even if we decide to go for a carrier and fail, it will not set the real operation back.  Another benefit of a carrier heist a day or two in advance.  We can be back to full operational strength in time for the op.  Carrier capture is something many have fantasized about, but to no practical end.  This is a chance to do it with a purpose!  If anyone has thoughts to share, please feel free, I would love to hear feedback.

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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #1
I'm really anxious to hear more official word from CIG on the boarding mechanic, that's been probably the #1 interest for me since it was announced along with ship repair/modding/building. As a Caterpillar owner the prospect of capturing not only carriers but other large cap ships is very exciting. I'm not necessarily interested in Vanduul tech at the moment other than selling for profit but in this op if anything we get can help the cause then I'd be willing to do what I can to get it and make it work.

I know some may have reservations about press-ganging UEE ships for O:P but if it comes down to that or nothing then I wouldn't have many reservations about trying to snag an escort carrier or something similar. If we (Skjaldborg) get a larger ship like that I don't think we would have a problem finding members for crewing and operating and we definitely would be willing to open it up for everybody to use for refueling and repair.

Personally my planned role is going to be in the support category so these are the kinds of things I'll be thinking about and planning in the back of my mind as we progress.
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #2
I agree that if we can go in via the flight deck, Freelancers will probably be the best way to go... big hold with a tail ramp for easy un-assing means the pilot only has to spend at worst thirty seconds on the deck.

My suggestion is to use Avengers as the first wave of boarding ships- they're faster and more agile, thus better able to evade any defenses on the way in, but still have that tail ramp. Load up a few with your best-armed and equipped troops and send them in to secure the hangar... then the main force can be delivered in Freelancers with minimal opposition. Meanwhile, Caterpillars and Cutlasses, which are designed to board from outside, get as close as possible to the command decks and latch on with the intent of taking control of the ship before the crew have a chance to activate whatever self-destruct mechanism they might have. 

Alternately, at least for Vanduul carriers, we may want to make a grab for Scythes before attempting to capture the carrier itself; the info released so far suggests that the Vanduul keep large numbers of fighters in reserve, so we could drop off a whole bunch of pilots and try to get away with as many ships as we can.

Of course, if large carriers are persistent objects as has been suggested, then the "best" option may simply be to hammer them flat with torpedoes before even attempting to board... then it's a salvage operation, and you deliver your repair crews the same way you would have your boarding parties. There's also a very good chance that some or even most of the disabled/wrecked Bengals in the PU will be in Vanduul space to begin with, so it may be a matter of acquiring and outfitting our command ships en route to the main objective. Tiber in particular I think will be a likely place to find derelict capital ships- it may be to our advantage to send in smaller raids over the course of Beta with the objective of salvaging as many of those wrecks as possible and bringing them back to safe space for refitting. Right now we have lots of fighters and transports and relatively few heavy-hitters... sounds like a perfect fleet for salvaging. The fighters handle any fighter-based opposition while the bombers and Idrises rough up any capital ships that come after our transports. We go in, we focus on one or two derelicts, we get them jump-ready, and we bug out... lather, rinse, repeat until we have everything worthwhile in the system or we decide we have enough of a fleet to make a push for Orion.

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #3
If that is a valid mechanic I would be happy to put together and work on salvage operations.
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  • Harker
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #4
Keep in mind that recovering derelict capital ships could take significant time (days/weeks/months) to get up to combat readiness, and that may prove true for captured ships which took severe damage in the fighting as well.

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #5
Another possible way of getting carrier support is to have political influence on people who control them. If massive corps end up having them from the man power they posses, then its the corp leaders we need to get into bed with (LOL). And that could rally more people to the cause as well.

This needs a massive add campaign with the countdown timer.

  • Ratu
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #6
We will get a better idea of how it works once the game starts but I am of the opinion that a crack strike team could disable and board a Bengal without too much effort. Theoretically all you have to do is suppress the CAP, remove the turrets around the docking ports/bays then either dock with the airlocks or just charge into the main docking bay. If we got a collection of highly trained and well equipped marines, I reckon a highly skilled 14 man squad could take out the entire ship's complement. That's only two Freelancers worth of troops. Call it 4 Freelancers in case some get shot down and to guarantee the success of the boarding action then a squadron of Hornets for fighter interdiction. Hornets keep the fighters off the Freelancers whilst they move in and remove the turrets surrounding the docking bay. Depending on max effective range of missiles which the Freelancer can carry, we may need a bomber to assist with this. Hornets can assist with turret suppression as soon as the defending fighters are eliminated.

Depending on how we want to run it, we either have the Marines cross trained in various shipboard roles or we send in a transport full of crew once the ship is secured to start fixing it and getting it the hell out of there before the UEE can respond properly.

This plan assumes that the Bengal will be on its own. If it has other capital and sub-capital ships escorting it, this job will become a hell of a lot harder and will then start requiring too much of our fleet to pull off. That said, if we could board all of the escorting ships, that would hugely boost our fleet and make up for losses incurred in the operation.

  • Ratu
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #7
Bear in mind, that strategy is based upon the concept of minimal cost to execute and minimal losses if it fails.
I'm thinking about it from a pirate point of view.

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #8
I'm just concerned about what CR has said from time to time (like in his new 4Player Network interview found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvHv5rVtrlo ). He's said a few times that there will be *1* carrier available for capture. Does this mean 1 carrier type? If so, and we capture a Bengal, that might mean that Vanduul carriers can't be captured. Keep in mind that Vanduul are said to try to self-destruct their stuff instead of it getting captured. Or worse yet, does he mean literally 1 carrier? On the subject of said carrier's persistence, I think they've said that if it takes enough damage it *will* be destroyed, and the persistent universe will start construction on another to replace it.

On the bright side, if there is only 1 carrier available for capture, it probably isn't UEE. They wouldn't make the only carrier in the game ruin your reputation to try to get.

Then there's other capitol ships. A lot of the stretch goals were playable capitol ship types, so we've got that going for us. And with the number of supporters we have, we could put together a lot of in-game credits (although I assume the vast majority would not contribute much if anything). We could perhaps buy a nice capitol ship from the Banu. I'm sure that carriers and Idrises aren't the only capitol ships capable of carrying/repairing/rearming a few fighters. And who knows what intrepid explorers will find?

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #9
I imagine our scouting operations will end up with a number of smaller capships before the actual release.

If we can get say, 9600 players in on this to sign up for hunting for a Bengal proper - to seize, restore, (wo)man and maintain it for Operation Pitchfork - park it on the vanduul side of a staging area as soon as it's ready.

My philosophy with all persistent ships, actually. "What do we do if we get one?"

Use it. If it means making Operation Pitchfork a bit of a bolder operation - yes.

Don't waste it, obviously - if it takes a week to get a few of them together and get them properly outfitted - but this stuff was not put into the game to be hoarded in carebear friendly zones.

  • Talkyn
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #10

Don't waste it, obviously - if it takes a week to get a few of them together and get them properly outfitted - but this stuff was not put into the game to be hoarded in carebear friendly zones.


I doubt the Pitchfork has much use for carebears.

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #11

I doubt the Pitchfork has much use for carebears.


Some people will want to stick to PvE, so we'll probably have some PvP cover squadrons during the operation.

  • Talkyn
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #12
A true carebear wouldn't even venture into Vanduul space with us! 

I get the desire to/not-to PVP, but this is going to be a risky endeavour for players that are willing to take risks.  All indications are that we will be hard-pressed to have success in this OP at all without having special squads in reserve just to keep non-pvp people from having their feelings hurt by anti-forkers instead of Vanduuls.

I have a feeling this won't go down in a smooth kind of way even if there aren't any anti-forks trying to crash the party.  Enemies will attack.  We will have talented dogfighters ready to take them on.   If some of those enemies happen to be other players I don't think the men & women in fighter squads or running interdiction will hesitate for a moment.

  • Hobbes
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #13
well you can count on my support for these pre-OP operations.

It is very likely that there will be a few salvageable UEE warships of past and recent days, or maybe the wrecks of two of the same type will make one closely working version.

Take and example,

lets say our scouts saw three Bengal wrecks, separately each one is a complete lose, but with the eye's of engineers in the scouting teams, they could quickly assess if two or more of those wrecks together could make one working version. So if it took three coordinated missions to retrieve each wreck, just to make one working Bengal Carrier, then it was a worth while set of missions. Because in the end, even One Bengal Carrier could be the difference between success or failure. 

And imagine the possibility of plenty of salvageable Military Spec'ed Idris Vette's there might be, a handy weapon in fighting the Vanduul.

Let the Ghosts of the past come forth and aid us in vengeance!

  • Bzerker01
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #14
The best option for boarding and troop carrying would probably be Caterpillars and Cutlasses, they are designed to breach hulls and send in large numbers of troops.

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #15
In the history of mankind and it's wars, WW2 being the best example, do you know how many active carriers (in-duty) were taken over by the enemy?

Zero.

Nursing up an abandoned derelict ship is one thing, snatching it away from the hands of the enemy is another. The amount of assumptions being done on this subject is staggering.

We'll be able to:
a) Take out the carrier's escorts.
b) Damage the carrier just enough so it's disabled but it doesn't blow up.
c) Land a crew on/in it.
d) Overpower the crew.
e) Operate this alien ship. (if Vanduul)
f) Get it out of danger for future use.
g) Fix it back up to shape.
h) Adapt it to our technology. (if Vanduul)
i) Use it effectively in battle.

Extremely unlikely. Overpowering the carrier will be an already difficult task, but what makes you think it'll just wait until all it's fighters are lost? Why wouldn't it flee? Or call for help? What makes you think you'll be able to bring ships into it when they can shut the blast doors or simply keep maneuvering so you can't land. Shoot out the maneuvering thrusters? Great, now where the hell do we get replacements for those?

Of course it'd be nice to do it, but it seems to me you'll have to consider a whole lot of things if you want to succeed in any kind of level.
It's a penguin... with a gun. I'd run if I were you.

  • JackDaniels
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #16

In the history of mankind and it's wars, WW2 being the best example, do you know how many active carriers (in-duty) were taken over by the enemy?

Zero.

Nursing up an abandoned derelict ship is one thing, snatching it away from the hands of the enemy is another. The amount of assumptions being done on this subject is staggering.

Of course it'd be nice to do it, but it seems to me you'll have to consider a whole lot of things if you want to succeed in any kind of level.


I would have to agree... Personally I would enjoy trying this, but not for this op if it came to running a capture mission from the enemy. We will still have to account for the resources spent over the resources gained in this case. Risk vs. Reward may come in to play... but the reward isn't that much greater when you look into it. We will have diverted to much of our time and resources attempting to capture something that could go to securing a structure or supporting other fighter wings in another fight or battle. Personally I would say Destroy the carrier the second it's found if its a Vanduul Active carrier... if its a carrier adrift then I would say we can throw our teams to securing it. But, we will still have to divert teams that I have plans to secure something will have to be switched around the tactic's of keeping that carrier secured 24/7 from other players that may just want to get their hands on it just for the LuLz and on top of that the NPC's to keep the carrier manned will be insane too.

I am currently sitting at 87% sure that the capture of a carrier would take to much from our planned objectives and goals in this operation to pull it off.
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #17
I think you guys are forgetting a few things. First of all, it apparently will be practical to capture carrier-sized ships in Star Citizen. We know this because CR has said on several occasions that there will be a Bengal-sized carrier that will be capturable, but only really maintainable by large player groups. Also, THAT carrier we have PLENTY of time to capture during the Beta. And making those attempts will be some of the best training for Operation Pitchfork that we could ask for. Frankly, I see little to no chance that anyone but OP's members will have that Bengal when OP starts. Even though most of us will be doing our own things before OP and only the most hardcore OP members will be willing to crew it before OP starts, many of us will be willing to come in and help make attempts to capture that ship, and many of us will be willing to come in as reinforcements if other players try to attack that ship and take it from us. So we'll have answers to almost all of the questions you have posed.

a) Take out the carrier's escorts. - That's what we're there to do anyway; neutralize all Vanduul forces. If we can't do that much, our operation is already lost.
b) Damage the carrier just enough so it's disabled but it doesn't blow up. - We will already have experience doing this when we capture the PU's carrier.
c) Land a crew on/in it. - We will already have experience doing this when we capture the PU's carrier.
d) Overpower the crew. - We will already have experience doing this when we capture the PU's carrier.
e) Operate this alien ship. (if Vanduul) - We can practice capturing and operating smaller Vanduul ships before OP starts in earnest with some expeditionary forces.
f) Get it out of danger for future use. - Disable first, capture last. If Vanduul keep coming, keep destroying them. The tough part here is their tendency to self-destruct.
g) Fix it back up to shape. - We will already have experience doing this when we capture the PU's carrier.
h) Adapt it to our technology. (if Vanduul) - That comes later. We can practice capturing and adapting smaller Vanduul ships before OP starts in earnest with some expeditionary forces.
i) Use it effectively in battle. - That comes later. Frankly, it's a bit foolish to think we can repair a carrier enough to be battle-ready in one weekend. As for its fighters, I'm sure most people will not want to use them during OP unless it's absolutely necessary, because they'll be uninsured while most likely all of the participating craft are insured.

If when our instances are broken up the first instance to wrap itself up has a carrier in it that has been disabled and the other instances are struggling, then sure, we should probably just destroy it and get almost everyone in that victorious instance ready to jump in when room is available in struggling instances. But toward the end, when there are already effectively long waiting lines to get into battle instances, why not give it a go? Chances are that instances where carriers are present will be longer fights anyway, because of their 200 fighters in storage. Hopefully we can disable the carrier before it readies all of them, though.
  • Last Edit: November 10, 2013, 11:17:22 AM by Knightcrawler

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #18
We don't necessarily need a combat platform.  I think first priority would be an advanced base for ships to land, rearm, refuel and repair.

With that as the primary goal, if we take out the weapons and engines of a Vanduul carrier, then it will still have the flight deck (in theory).  Our fighters and cruisers can still defend the platform and if it's going to be lost we just scuttle it on our way out.

Why not do like the cylons tried to do in BSG and just get to a damage control center and space the crew?  We don't need to fight them if they are trying to breathe vacuum.  This is on the assumption we know enough about Vanduul cap ships to know where the damage control center is.
Icarus_Above

  • Ratu
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #19
It also assumes that we will be able to do things like open all airlocks from a central point on the ship.

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #20
If the Vanduul blow up their Scythes to prevent capture...

What do you think they'll do with a Carrier?

I can actually see them allowing you to land boarding parties on their ship so they can blow you up with them.
It's a penguin... with a gun. I'd run if I were you.

  • MattK101
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #21
Let's keep in mind too that a sizeable percentage of the community will not be participating in Op PF, so snagging persistent capital ships could well put a bullseye on our backs in the eyes of those players. The last thing we need is to have half our strength dedicated to protecting capital ships, because every jump they make toward Vanduul space ends up with 10 instances' worth of PvP squadrons trying to take our ships.

Not saying that big guns won't be useful or that we should not plan on having some. But we should prepare for some heavy fighting before we even get to Vanduul space.

Nor do I expect it to be easy to take player controlled ships by force after the first week. When they're first found, yeah, I expect some of the capitalships will be inadequately defended, but after a week or so the hardcore PvP groups will have picked off most of the easy captures. We may be better off, as was suggested earlier, trying diplomatic options after the first rush of capital ships are claimed

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #22
So for those who haven't seen it, take a lot at the $15 mil stretch goal.

"Star Citizen will feature an additional ship class, the escort carrier."

Personally, I think escort carriers are *exactly* what we need. Numerous enough that we can get enough of them for our instances. Small enough that they don't take all our players to run. Large enough to rearm and repair craft. I think the more active Pitchfork people should see what we can do to buy as many of these in-game as possible.

  • Andy_H
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #23
Anything above a Destroyer hull will be considered persistent. An Escort Carrier would be player flyable, but not ownable. The instant he logs off the ship would be vulnerable to being hijacked by someone else.

That said, and given all the talk about how Idris' can dock small fighters, perhaps it will be possible to convert a Frigate or Destroyer (or even a Transport) to function as a poor man's Carrier. There has been a lot of chatter about this, but again we will have to wait and see what options and mechanics we will actually have to work with.

Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #24
I'm new on the OP but considering we now that several systems are available in ships we may consider a "politically incorrect" solution into taking a carrier : we don't know yet how the instancing is preciselly going to work BUT I sincerelly doubt we'll be able to land a strike force big enough to take a carrier manned by 1000 people, even if some will be flying the ship or its fighters. No matter how stupid AI may or may not be it will not tire, human players will, start making mistakes and so on, also boarding forces will need ammo to continue operation.
Another issue being that if a Bengal or any carrier class is in a pinch I'm fairly sure it will call for help and having a second (or thrid, or fourth), which means we would probably have to hit fast and get out even faster with the prize.

So may battleplan might be to:
1. Send first a couple wave of combined fighters and bomber squads to take out defenses around boarding point in priority and reinforce it to take out fighters.

2. Bring 3 or 4 Constellation class (wedge or diamond formation depending on the number) armed to the teeth on the turret side while (if possible) ditching missile racks for shield enhancements, loaded with supplies and support crew immediately followed in line formation by freelancers loaded with nothing but shield enhancements and actual boarding forces. The constellation would serve as a massive front shield for the freelancers hidden behind and take turn taking the front (assuming they can't be one-shotted) for recharging shields

3. IF they manage to penetrate flying deck or hangar  the constellation would position themselves to block the access to the fly deck / hangar by hammering them with turrets (preventing marines and carrier personnel to get in) while the freelancers would unload the boarding squads which in turn would clear any remaining hostiles, hopefully it may also prevent carrier to launch any more fighters.

4. Next order of business would be taking control of the ship. For that I actually wouldn't necessarily go for the CIC or whatever command center is called as it would likely be heavily guarded. I would instead send boarding party in full suit (which is certainly possible given derelict are likely to lack any atmosphere) to take out/shut down life support and leave the personnel die out while minimizing damage to the ship itself.

5. Once 20 minutes or so have passed, go to CIC with engineer or dedicated crew (after restarting life support if needed), restore systems (potentially opening all airlocks if needed) and get the hell out before another carrier comes in or something, we'll have wrecked our UEE reputation enough for one day !  ::)

Given the amount of troops on board I hardly see how else we could take one but regardless it would be a good test for taking a vanduul one as I don't think they do well without atmosphere either.

  • FelixGuardian
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Re: Carrier Capture Proposal
Reply #25
Let's not forget the point, it's an alien ship. What do alien ships have? Alien technology  8)

Let's say, we actually board a carrier and try to take it. Well, that's not going so well, and we decide to withdraw. There is nothing stopping the boarders trying to walk away with anything and everything not nailed down. Hmm. think that computer data downloaded might not sell well on the open market? Guns, equipment, whatever might be worth more than the carrier itself and far more useful ;)

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