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Turanic Raiders
Ironwatsas
With International Talk like a Pirate Day merely a day away, I think it's time we thought about our own resident band of Space Pirates; the Turanic Raiders. Considering they have a grand total of 5 ships, It would be fairly easy to add them in. They'd be far more relevant to the mod than the Kadeshi.

Lore wise, I have a seperate document that will appear over the next day or so discussing some of the fluff. For now though let's consider the gameplay:

The Turanic Raiders are, above all else, Pirates and and Guerrillas, and not a formal military force. They're on the technological short end of the stick, compared to other races. Under most conditions, they would be no match for a trained, organized, properly equipped space navy. They know this, so the Raiders tend to use stealth, trickery, and speed, and simply pick and choose their raids carefully. They typically only fight serious opponents when either backed into a corner or paid to do so by someone powerful.

Most of the Turanic Territories lie on the Western side of the Galaxy, in the Great Wastelands. Being a collection of planetary and sub-planetary states, kingdoms, warlord realms, etc. All squabbling for petty power. Pretty much everyone in the Galaxy hates them, and the feeling is almost entirely mutual. The reasons will be explained in a proper lore document, but it involves the collapse of the Tobari Empire, from which the Turanics are descended. Most of what the galaxy thinks of as Raiders are, however, distantly connected to the Turanic Kingdoms at home. There is a similarly equipped diaspora of Raider clans operating across the galaxy, including in the areas near the former Taiidan Republic border regions. This puts them at odds with both the Hiigarans and Vaygr. They are allied with neither.

Their ships are, as a general rule, less powerful than Hiigarans and less Numerous than the Vaygr. They tend to rely on suprise, stealth, confusion, hit-and-run tactics, etc; They design their ships to hit hard and fast, then run for it. They will always try to avoid battles of attrition. Moreover, their general modus operandi is to capture civilian ships whole. It is very rare, but not unheard of, for them to try and capture an isolated or damaged warship.

As for Turanic Ships, their main native designs are characterized as thus:

-Fighter Class (Bandit): Their basic light fighter, functioning as a scout, superiority fighter, and support craft. The chassis is fairly simple, and heavily compartmentalized and modular, allowing for various equipment like missile bays, salvage arms, or primitive electronic warfare systems to be added fairly easy. Stats wise, they're roughly equivalent to the Vaygr Light Assault Craft, abiet with a slightly weaker main gun, better speed and maneuverability, usually better missiles (this varies), and slightly inferior armor.

-Corvette Class (Thief): Standard combat corvette. The Thief functions as both a small assault ship, escort, boarding craft, ambush ship, and tug. It is a decent 'jack of all trades, master of none'. It can best be compared to the Gladius-A corvette in terms of stats, however it is somewhat faster, comparable in maneuverability, and has inferior armor. It's turrets are essentially, slow-firing cannons, with a high per-shot damage, but relatively low muzzle velocity and accuracy (Turanics use simple chemical-based kinetics and targeting systems). It will have the capture ships ability as well, but be much slower and more vulnerable than a Frigate, due to it's small troop compliment.

I would like to see them use a Mimic Field as they did in Cataclysm; this would open up some interesting tactical and scenario options. Would it be possible to script a system where the Mimic field 'builds' a subsystem in the exact shape of an enemy ship, which the UI indicates is a 'friendly' to whoever the ship is disguised as, and the subsystem 'dies' whenever weapons are fired?

-Corvette Class (Brigand): Probably the Raiders' most dangerous strike craft. Armed to the teeth with rockets of various type. Presumably, due to the necessary of guidence systems and ECM/ECCM systems, it would have at least a basic EW capability (most Turanic ships have only bare-basic computer systems, and are mostly run by simple analog or mechanical systems). Judicious use of Sabot munitions would allow the missile corvette to engage a wide range of targets. The main drawbacks are the same as the Thief chassis: Poor armor, weapon reliability, and very little defense against return fire.

Eventually, I'd like to fit it with some kind of gun turret (I've imagined it with a 90mm AC, using the Vaygr CIWS model) topside, to give some direct fire capability. Presumably this would be an uprated model developed in the interim.

-Frigate Class (Assassin): Ion Cannon Frigate. Very similar to it's HWC incarnation. It is flimsier than the Hiigaran ICF, has a beam with a short recharge time, but also a short firing time. The Mag Arrays basically allow the inferior Raider accelleration ladder to achieve parity, but aren't much more powerful in terms of damage due to the aforementioned short firing time. It is also equipped with a Cloaking Device, allowing it to snoop around behind enemy lines or get to an ambush position, which is it's main advantage.

Later models, I would imagine, would equip an armament similar to the Vaygr Merkavah type XIV: Missile launchers mounted in the inboard hull forward of the Mag Arrays, and a few cannons for point defense.

-Carrier Class (Lord): Attack Carrier, the main ship of the Turanic Fleet. It is probably the only Raider ship which has extensive CIWS cover, even if it's targeting systems are somewhat inferior to those of the HGN and VGR. The engineering and improvisation skills of the Raiders are remarkable, but the availability of high-tech detection/interception equipment would limit their ability to construct automated targeting systems capable of enduring a saturation strike. Therefore, the Turanic Player would need to get their crews to jury-rig or set up equipment (via internal 'modules') or roll out a particular strike loadout into the Carrier's hardpoints.

So overall, the Lord would be adaptable, but require some micromanagement on the player's part. Stats wise, it's comparable to the Hiigaran carrier in hull strength, but it's Ion Cannons give it better firepower (until the HGN carrier gets it's MRAM pods back). It's also a fairly fast and maneuverable ship for it's size, capable of keeping pace with Raider Frigates, or getting itself out of trouble. The drawback would be less hanger space and much slower production time. Raider frigates would hyperspace in.

-Station Class (Raider Base): Equivalent to a Shipyard, but without innate maneuvering capability (it requires other ships to tow it around). Raider Bases are essentially manufactured as open scaffolds with basic crew facilities, designed to be expanded as needs must. Typically used as resupply points, shipyards, fuel depots, etc. Considering their importance to the Raiders, they will understandably defend them with full force if threatened.

-Other Ships: In addition to homemade hardware, the Raiders would have quite a bit of old Taiidani hardware, and armed merchantmen/space 'technicals' made from whatever they've been able to capture. Occasionally they might use captured military ships, or really old salvaged hardware (think 'Karos Derelicts') or whatever other ramshackle creations they've cobbled together. Working with what we already have, we could give them the Taiidan Resource Collector/Controller, Minelayer Corvette, and Proximity Sensors, as well as Karos Autoguns (all of which would make sense or are canonical for the Raiders to have). Maybe the odd Qwaar-Jet heavy cruiser here and there.

As time goes on, we'll develop the Raiders with more kit. I've been wanting to get access to some of PTV's models (since they're awesome, especially compared to all of the other Raider Kitbashes/Customs I've seen), but with MoLoLu and the other old PTV devs disappeared, I've been unable. We'll see how things develop down the road, but getting them playable in a base state is certianly doable.

Of course, they wouldn't really be 'balanced' in any competitive sense, for reasons outlined above. Mainly they'd be an enemy for single-player scenarios, imaginative skirmishes, or a challenge to see if you can beat a proper army with them.
 
Typhoone
OK - so if I stay up late tonight, I can bring in Tur-Raiders into PDS with their base-game ships and PDS-ify their weapons. It will require setting up their playable race-script chain, build menus, and some core AI. It's not an easy lift, but it can be done if I dedicate a few hours.

My question is: what will we do with them for Pirate Day? PDS v1.0 is nowhere near ready for release. If people want to make some gameplay videos with FRAPs and overlay some music I can understand that and we can publish it tomorrow, but I am unfortunately working both today and tomorrow so I won't have a lot of time to help do this and really need other people to step up to take any work I would do late tonight and make it something. And if we do something I'd want it to look pretty good and for us to shop it around on GBX forums, HW reddit, Steam community, etc.

If it is just to get an internal test version out for tomorrow I'm less inclined to do so. I've been asking for others to help but our community is still a little light on the modelers, scripters, testers, etc.

Typh.
 
Homdax
I find "thief" a bit lame, perhaps "Ravager".

Some more: http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/bandit
king-o'da'bigfile
 
mrWHO
"Thief" name for pirate boarding craft seems like a proper one to me.
 
Ironwatsas
Well, "Thief" was it's canonical name according to the Cataclysm manual.

At any rate, Typh raises a good point: We need to start spreading the word, and showing off what we've done so far. Some Raider vs Hiigaran scenarios (representing pre-war police actions or something) might be a nice way to do that.

Hopefully that brings in some new blood with modeling/texturing experience.
 
mrWHO
I'm not sure if they would have any worth as a full separated race. They could work well as a mercenary reinfocements for Taiidan (which according to your lore would be the only side willing to do business with them).

Also this could be scripted as an "event" or "crate" where hostile Turanic group is spawned during the skirmish and attack one of the resource points.
 
Ironwatsas
Well, the Turanic/Taiidan alliance from the HW1 era would be somewhat deprecated in the modern age, the Taiidan have the Vaygr for that now.

I've had a few ideas for Turanic scenarios. Namely a rescue mission where the player must stealthily lead a Marine Assault ship in to rescue hostages from a Turanic-held civilian ship, before they are taken to a Raider Base, then defend it from counterattacks.

Or a scenario wherein a weakly-protected customs checkpoint must fend off a Turanic Attack and defend nearby freight vessels.
 
mrWHO
Well I think that despite Vaygr presence Turanic would be useful to Taiidan. They have history of cooperation witch eachother and while Vaygr occupy Higgs on eastern front the Turanic could do the raids on now lightly defended western border of Higg space.
 
Typhoone
Turanic carrier-group would also be a good 'reinforcement wing' for the Vagyr player.
 
yasotay
Well this is interesting. If we are presupposed to the Imperial Taiidan being fully ascendant already, then I would agree they would use the Turrainic again to assail their enemy from another flank. Making your enemy fight a two front war is always desirable. Especially if you have deniability.

I created a Hiigaran Frontier Fleet (sort of a super Coast Guard) with mostly frigates to keep maurading Turranic out of Hiigaran space. They are tolerated by the numbered fleets but are looked on as a group of misfits who can't hang with naval rules and regs. Because they are a frontier force they operate in smaller groups mostly as a trip wire force if there is a large incursion.
I am ancient
 
Ironwatsas
Definitely some good ideas all around. Okay, we can assume there'd still be some lines of communication between the Turanic Raiders and Imperialist Taiidan. And I do certainly love Yas's ideas of a western border fleet. We can definitely factor that in somehow.

I've always thought of the Raiders as a fairly disorganized bunch, with different groups and warlords pursuing different goals, unless someone pays them otherwise.
 
yasotay
I saw them as warbands, who mostly fought each other when they did not get paid to attack someone else, with an occasional foray into others space for loot and prestige.

Truth be told I modelled them on Orcs...
I am ancient
 
Ironwatsas
Oi, dez' be too squishy an' pink, not green an' 'ard like proppa orkz! I'd imagine that the Raiders were the tattered remnants of a previous interstellar empire, some of which are trying to restore a piece of past glory, others acting in narrow self interest.

The Piratical Raiders are probably distinct, politically, than the sedintary Kingdoms, although the latter would probably invite the former to fight for them as mercenaries. Raiders, I'd imagine as a mix between ethno-religious terror groups, and Borderlands' bandits, with a healthy mix of stereotypical Pirateyness for flavor.
 
Homdax
How deep is the Clan approach in the Vagyr culture? Not having read a lot about it, I do recall the mention of Vagyr Clans, but their absence apart from that mention. Would it not make sense to have a Clan approach to the Turanic Raiders? Warbands do not exclude Clans...
king-o'da'bigfile
 
Ironwatsas
Well, the Vaygr can be considered a large collection of feudal tribes and clans, so the idea of a 'clan' is core to their culture. The unification of the Vaygr under Tural and Makaan is an exception to the general rule, and it's only after the invasion that groups like the Ravinder Democratic Republic are setting up more conventional governments.

The Turanics are a bit different. Some of the more nomadic groups may have a 'clan-line' system in place, but most would resemble warlord polities or organized crime syndicates. A few of the largest Turanic kingdoms might be de-facto nation states, abiet somewhat backward and corrupt, but within the Turanic Wastes there are several national governments, claiming some kind of de-jure authority over the others, or otherwise attempting to establish themselves as legitimate.

Due to the Turanics' reputation, diplomatic and geographical isolation, and constant infighting, this hasn't worked.
 
Thorin
Turanic Raiders were known for their low-tech, pragmatic solutions to problems. In HW1, information on some of their capabilities was supplied by Mothership Intelligence.

The strike craft generally had unusually heavy armor, which slowed overall ship acceleration.

The Thief-Class Corvette, the way it's described, sounds an awful lot like a typical pirate craft. Unarmed merchant ships would be powerless vrs. its small cannons, and although it sadly didn't have this ability in HW1, it was primarily a boarding vessel. Again, heavy armor for a corvette. With proper funding, I could see the Turanics turning out an assault version of the ship, incorporating heavier guns with better fire rate, replacing the boarding team with ammunition magazines.

The Assassin is just...fragile. I don't think you could really attach anything to it, for fear of the whole thing falling apart. However, the Vagyr assault frigate looks somewhat like I would imagine a Turanic gunship might look like. Such a vessel would probably work alone, basically operating as a pirate cruiser.

Pirates don't stand up to real navies. I agree that these guys could make good reinforcement "mercenaries" or possibly a race for small scale scenarios like convoy escort, carrier duels or the like.

I'm afraid this is all based on my impressions of them from the first game, and inspiration drawn from them for the Vagyr. I don't remember Cataclysm well at *all*.
 
Thorin
I just had an idea. Turanic PDS isn't focused on missiles. Maybe they can have countermissiles? I dunno.

I'm thinking that the turrets on the Thief, the shallow dome design, would be serviceable as the bomber defense turrets on things like frigates and destroyers; heavier than the pea shooters on the carrier, but tracking fast enough to hit strike craft. It'd shoot slow, heavy (frigate style) rounds, one at a time. I really love that turret model (with most of the weapon concealed inside the ship).
 
Ironwatsas

Quote

Pirates don't stand up to real navies. I agree that these guys could make good reinforcement "mercenaries" or possibly a race for small scale scenarios like convoy escort, carrier duels or the like.


That's basically what they're going to end up doing. I'd imagine Turanic Ships are in use by a wide range of unscrupulous types across the galaxy, so there's a fair bit of scope for them to end up in galactic far eastern affairs. I've actually had a few scenarios in mind involving Turanic activity and naval response efforts (I.e. sneak special ops frigates in under cloak to recapture a civilian liner) or (rear-area units defending a trade outpost from a Pirate Raid).

Now, on that note, I've talked to Pouk and he said he'd let us use his PTV Turanic models, which gives us a fair number of ships (probably way more than we're ever gonna need) to work with in addition to the ones from vanilla HWRM (which I would perfer to use for their given roles).
 
mrWHO
You reached Pouk? What about other PTV ships like Taiidan?
 
Ironwatsas
He didn't make any of the other stuff, so it's out of his hands.
 
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