Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Beam Curve

I have updated the way that beam weapons work to make them more powerful at longer range, and less powerful at short range.

Up to now, the power delivered by a beam weapon has decreased linearly with range. Using a set charge amount, firing at a target twice as far away would do half the damage. This worked ok, but it made beams very deadly at point blank range and almost useless at anything over about half range.

Now it is using a cubic function to calculate the rate at which the power of the beam drops off with distance. See this graph:

The green line is the "old" linear drop off rate. The red line is the new drop off rate. You can see that the power of a beam drops off very quickly with range at first. Then levels out for a while, and then drops off again quickly at the edge of its range.

This means beams are more powerful at long range (the curve is above the old green line from 50% to 100% of range). But they are less powerful at short range (the curve is below the old green line from 0 to 50% range).

So if a target is at 75% of a beams range, you will do almost the same damage to the target as if it was at 40% of the beams range.

This change applies immediately to all beam weapons (point defense, lasers, phasers, energy drain beams and tractor beams).

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