Oolite with TowBar expansion: please someone explains this!
I'm deeply impressed by some expansions to the Oolite game, especially the newest EscortDeck and TowBar.
TowBar (for those who don't play it) allows you to salvage and tow a derelic ship into the dock for money. But the author has done it 'overly' well in my opinion by intoducing a complex 'Licensing' system where you 50% of your initial profits are retained for a 'License' and afterwards you need to pay hefty taxes to the governements in place when towing a ship. IMO your profits aren't simply there... But there is also an option to buy a so-called TUG DRONE which will get you paid 50% immediately instead of licenses and taxes.
But does this Tug Drone not make the towing superfluous? What profits can you really make by towing? Is it worth it?
And then I have some technical trouble with the expansion: I get the 1st mission where I have to salvage a Medical Boat in trouble. With my Cobrta I, I get a message like "not enough energy to autotowing" altough my banks are full and operational. Impossible to tow the ship, so how do I proceed? (My mass is ok with 1.6 mass Morray Boat to tow it). Do I need to buy an extra energy unit first ? This would make the mission a negative profit action, because expensive to buy.
Also when using Military Laser, there is no chance ever to transform a ship into a derelic, I will simply destroy it. But with the Beam Laser I feel like a sitting duck ready to be killed in the Oolite Universe, one should not use this I think, the combat part of the game is very unballanced especially for beginning career players that will run in any traps without exit stage
For me, impossible to start the game without editing the save file first to add some credits and a Fuel Injector...
Thanks for any Oolite expert to elaborate this for me - a beginner
Yes Oolite is a great game isn't. I feel that you better ask your specific question about the Towbar.oxp you ask here . I linked to the OXP forum to the topic of the Towbar. It is a Norby OXP and his OXP's are really deep in possibilities so you can better ask him. I myself have Towbar installed but my ship at the moment doen't have a tower so I don't remember the specifics of the gameplay.
As pagroove suggested, I suggest you take this query to the Oolite forums. SpaceSimCentral (where you are now) is not active much these days. Use the link in pagroove's message.
I linked your post to this OXP's thread yesterday - no response from Norby, as yet.
Oolite Naval Attaché
Thank you all, yes, a very good idea. Thanks Cody for linking me. I will of course report solutions here also for those interested.
By reading again the TowBar instructions my guess is this:
Once having the so-called License you pay taxes but you don't get anymore 50% of the value blocked (that's for paying the 20.000 credits for the license).
I will have to check this one to see if I'm right:
The 'Not enough Energy' message is made to safe your life if a booby trap onboard a derelic ship would explode and kill you because you don't have enough energy to survive the blow. You can overwrite this with SHIFT-N and tow the ship at your own risk.
A nice idea, but I doubt the overall risk to run into a trap and having most of your expensive equipments destroyed is not worth the meager profits you make when towing...Let's see...
That's all very elaborated and interesting, I can only raise my hat :=)
Thank you for your feedback, here are my answers.
Tug Drone is not pay as much as if you acquire a license and tow ships, much more like a second chance if you already tow something but found or make another derelict ship and you want get the money safely and instnatly instead of risking that the ship will not be here when you arrive back to tow it.
You must deduct the cost of drone (1000cr) from the profit and occupy a missile slot which reduce your combat force a bit so I think there are enough drawback to be interesting. Your question seems to confirm it in itself.
Note there is a third way to get out the valuable parts from derelict ships without towing if you buy the Ship Miner equipment.
Morays usually not towable with a Cobra I due to a hidden trap could destroy your ship. An Extra Energy Unit is not help in this case, too late to recharge your damage faster when your ship is already blown due to the max. energy is lower than the detonation. But better shields could help (Shield Boosters or Military Shields) due to added to your energy (the lowest one if any side is not in max. currently).
You are right that this particular Medical Boat should be safe and without any traps but the current code is not known this. Thank you for the report, I will make a fix in the next version.
There is a Laser Reductor equipment for 100cr which help you in making derelicts with any laser.
Moreover there are Laser Cannons which help much in this job: "pilots tend to eject if facing against a cannon when a single energy bank is left only to prevent a fatal next hit.".
For an early Fuel Injector you can sell your laser and missiles, then make some profit with any cargo on your first way to Zaonce where you can buy it.
Hi Norby... welcome to SSC.
Oolite Naval Attaché
thanks very much to respond here, welcome to SSC. Sorry for my delayed response, but I was so busy with Oolite lately...
I'd like to tell you how awesome good your numerous expansions are, you are transforming Oolite in a fantastic game 😎
At the game start, with 100 credits I had the (maybe bad) idea to sell my Cobra III for buying a Cobra I + 6000 or so credits remaining for which I have buyed essential upgrades, but fact is the Cobra I is much weaker, only half the energy banks and 20% slower than Cobra III, a reason why I have lot of trouble with pirates at least without the Military Laser.
It has taken me some time to figure out that when your ship doesn't have the pre-requisites for some upgrades, then these upgrades (like your Ship Miner) won't appear in the Ship Upgrade list. Also I wondered where all these files are that you talk about in your instructions, but then I understand now that a *.opz file is just a zip file
I will go through your tips above, I'm sure I will have a lot of fun. I will post my future questions in the Oolite Community.
May I take the opportunity and ask you:
Cobra I and towing:
Reading your post I understand that with that ship I can only tow very small ships like Krait or Adder and nothing else, true? If yes then I should re-buy a Cobra III soonest, it will take me some time to afford this 🙂
When I load this expansion, will pirates also get these canons? This would make my bleak situation even harder...
Military Laser and Laser Reductor:
With a Military Laser and a Laser Reductor, Is there a chance to 'shoot down' a ship to be a derelict without cheating - that is without modifying your expansion files?
It will be my pleasure to further read about you in the Oolite Community, currently I have loaded the most common Expansions that don't make the universe harder, but I'm sure I will take a look at others as well. Years ago I have played a remote version, I remember the fascination
Thanks, and see you,
Thank you for your warm words.
Yes, Cobra I can tow small ships only, even a Krait is too heavy for them.
Yes, some pirates will use Laser Cannons if you install this addon, although the mass limits prevent to use the stronger variants. Most pirate use small ships where the Mini Cannon is the only option which is about as powerful as a Beam Laser, just fire much slower. But you should be more cautious near an offender Anaconda, Boa or Python.
And yes, Laser Reductor officially tone down your laser when you hit a derelict ship to prevent destruction.