This is a cool idea a thought up.
Suspendium has a unique property that allows it to repel other crystals and objects. Now if the crystals were arranged in a certain way (I'm really just making crap up at this point), it could deflect projectiles.
Obviously, for balancing, the shield computer/crystal/emitter should be an unlockable tech in the campaign, and massively expensive. It should also take up a lot of room, just like the targeting computer.
Again for the sake of balance, the shield should only soften the blow of the projectile, not negate it completely. Aside from that, the shield would only have enough power to deflect 4 to 8 cannonballs depending on what weapon is used. After the shields go offline it has to run a 20 to 30 second recharge cycle to bring them back up.
Tell me what you guys think. :)
Except suspendium only repels other suspendium crystals. So this would only work against the suspendium cannon.
Hmm, good point.
Although I don't know the lore as much as Zark I'll try to explain an alternate concept. Perhaps the emitter arranges the natural suspendium dust in the air in a way that stops or softens the blow of the cannonball. Something along the lines of a magnetic field.
Air Lord, Engineering Corps
You could use a combination of large suspendium crystals to hold suspendium dust in the formation of a wall, this device could held by scaffolding in front of the ship to block projectiles.
For balancing and lore sake I think the shield should block all projectiles that pass through it (meaning if your ship is completely boxed with suspendium shielding no bullets will get in OR out).
Also the shield could lose some suspendium dust every time it is impacted, and if there is not enough dust the shield becomes useless.
So, the first weapon hit will be negated 100% but the percentage reduces by 10% every hit, so the next bullet passes through doing only 10% damage because the shield is now at 90% reduction instead of 100%.
I like that idea, Firebird. Though the vessel equipped with shields should still be able to fire. Albeit with a damage de-buff of some description.
No I think that would make it too strong and give no reason whatsoever of non-shielded ships.
Edit: Actually another way to balance it would be to remove the damage debuff and have all bullets damage your shielding no matter who shot them!
I'd like to bring this discussion back from the depths of the suggestions board, I thought it was really neat.
Maybe another way of doing the shields could be From the Depths style where shields don't stop projectiles but use huge amounts of power to ricochet them away; with the chance of projectiles penetrating the shield higher as the angle of incidence is lower.
With this system in place and installed forwards facing on an airship enemy bullets might act like this:
The enemy airship we are facing can shoot head on and ignore our shields.
The enemy base below and ahead of us can only shoot at an angle, most shots will be deflected by our shields (and hit someone else).
The enemy airship shooting us from behind is unhindered by our forwards facing shields.
That actually makes sense, and is quite balanced. Good idea.
Makes considering ship dimensions more practical as well, like making a long building instead of a tall one for a upwards shielding bonus.
Yeah, and long landships with flak cannons can be better protected from bombers.
That makes me think of the SUPCOM Bomb Bouncer unit that does exactly what it says on the tin.
Bouncing bombs? Weren't the used to blow dams during the Second World War?
Yup, but they didn't bounce they spun really fast to skim over the water like a stone!
Hmm, that may be a bit controversial, but maybe an "active ability" that you have to activate yourself? It would go like this:
The enemy shoots a volley at you.
You press the button.
A wave of powder is emitted from your ship, as if you vented it.
The cannonballs/bullets/shards/etc are repulsed and don't touch the ship.
It would actually consume powder and make you lose a bit of altitude each time...
I'm not really a fan of the idea of "shields", or activated abilities for that matter.
The only shields I think belong in this game are the ones made of cold rolled steel and reinforced timber.