Ship design process scratchpad
Aim : merge Drek's ideas with some Stars! like stuff and some new ideas.
lifted stuff from Drek (with apologies to him!)
"I'd say, do it like tabletop Battletech: Each hull has a tonnage capacity and slots to stick stuff. Some slots are specialized for certain special stuff. (for example, asteriod hulls might have more "big" slots for big guns, every hull would have a special engine slot.) Unlike other items, armor doesn't need a slot.
Each part (including armor) adds to tonnage. Part tonnage + hull tonnage= total tonnage. Part tonnage must be less than hull tonnage capacity.
Engines add to part tonnage, meaning if you add a big, powerful engine it'll take up space that could have been spent on more weapons and armor.
Engine power/total tonnage=manuverability in real space, speed in starlanes. Again, more or less just like battletech.
(using the word "ton" but mean 100x as much)
Corvette Hull Mk I: It has 10 tons worth of space, and 4 slots. The player sticks in a 8 ton engine and two 1 ton pea-shooters, to make a super-fast corvette with no real armor and weak guns.
Rock Hull Mk II: It has 100 tons worth of space, 10 slots, and 2 "big" slots. (in addition, it has natural armor of type Rock and 200 tons worth of structure.) The player sticks two MegaMass Drivers into the "big" slots, for a total of 50 tons, a 30 ton engine, and 20 tons of misc. crap (sensors, point defenses, etc.). Dispite the fact that the Rock ship has a lot larger engine than the Corvette, it's 300 tons total means the ship moves much slower than the corvette designed above. Basically, a Rock Hull sacrifices speed in exchange for a few "big" slots.
Note, the player could have added in the 8 ton engine and used the extra space for a bunch of shields, point defenses, pea shooters, or something. But then his Rock Hull ship would move at a snail's pace--virtually immobile.
Another balancing factor: high tech stuff (like the big mass drivers) cost big industry to build and lots of credits to maintain. "
a few links to stars! design stuff
kitted out as missile ship: as beam ship: