VGA Planets is (C) by Tim Wisseman.
BANZAI! is freeware, copy it like crazy! My only condition: Do not change the contents of this archive.
What's this thing?
Let's get it straight: Every VPL player asks herself sooner or later "What the hell did Tim have in mind of when he made the Red Wind class carrier hull tech 8?! It's small, it's almost unarmed, it doesn't have any special mission... ...it's all but useless!"
Well, here's the answer to that old question: The Red Wind is... ...a mobile KAMIKAZE fighter launcher! ("Banzai!" is said to be an ancient Terran battlecry, dating back to Japanese suicide pilots in world war II)
Installation and Setup
Copy BANZAI!.EXE into the directory where your host 3.2x resides. Edit (or create) your AUXHOST1.BAT, in the same directory, by adding the following line:
BANZAI! PathToHostFiles [ImpactDamage]
i. e. if your game data are in the subdirectory GAME1, you write
ImpactDamage is an optional parameter, see below.
Usage of BANZAI! in the game
A Red Wind - ANY Red Wind, no matter who owns it - is able to launch its fighters on a suicide attack against a specific enemy ship. To do this, the following conditions must be met:
- the RWC must not be cloaked (sorry, that would be too simple!)
- also, the target must not be cloaked (you can't ram a target you can't
see, right? ;) )
- the RWC must have set its friendly code to the ID number of the target
ship (yes, that's the same method as the firecloud chunnel)
- the RWC must occupy the same position as the target ship
- both ships (RWC and target) must not be out of fuel
- and of course, the RWC needs fighters on board to launch
If at the beginning of the turn these conditions are met, the Red Wind's fighters will take off and head for the target at maximum overthrust (faster than they'd ever fly normally, because you can't fight effectively when moving that fast). If the target is armed, some suicide fighters will be shot down before they can impact. The number of fighters thus intercepted is equal to the number of the target's beam weapons plus the target's fighter bays (if any, and if the target has at least as much fighters as it has bays).
All fighters not shot down will smash into the targets hull, severely damaging it. The default is that every fighter will do the equivalent of a mine hit, that is: a ship of 100 kt hull mass will take exactly 100 % damage from a single Kamikaze hit!
(NOTE: Engine-Shield Bonus is useless here. Immediately before contact with the shields, the fighters will fire their beam weapons on maximum power, burning them out but piercing the shields just long enough to smash through...)
If the host wants to enter another damage value, she may do so by stating a second command line parameter with the amount of damage per fighter, in percent, that she wishes. Example:
Again we have our game data files in the subdirectory GAME1, and the host wants every suicide fighter to do 50 % damage to a 100 kt hull. She will enter the following line in the AUXHOST1.BAT:
BANZAI! GAME1 50
Technically, that's all you need to know. To make sure you know just what kind of little monster the RWC becomes when using this attack, consider:
A Gorbie Battlecarrier (almost 1000 kt hull mass) with 10 beams and 10 fighter bays will be smashed by a RWC using 30 fighters: 10 shot down by the Gorbie's beams, another 10 by the Gorbie's fighters, the rest rams the victim into oblivion! (that is, on default value)
Of course, you can use this apocalyptic attack on only one target per RWC per turn. Also, the RWC must de-cloak in the turn it uses the Kamikaze attack, so the enemy will see it and may, for example, lay a minefield to kick it into hell before it can cloak again and stalk it's next target. And remember, the host can always enter a different value of impact damage. Any number from 10 to 200 will be valid (although the values > 100 are left to those hosts depraved enough to really want them!).
Hey... if you don't like it, don't use it! ;)
And now, it's time for action. Right now a RWC may be busy stalking your newly-constructed battleship, ripping it apart even before the wet paint is dried! GO OUT THERE AND STOP IT!
Famous last words ;)
Strictly speaking, this is a beta test version. I've done some testing and did not find any program error, but that doesn't mean anything of course - I'm only human after all. Therefore, it's time for the standard...
DISCLAIMER: There is no guarantee at all that BANZAI! will not be able to destroy your game data files, so I strongly recommend you routinely make a backup before firing up the host!
Well, if you find an error or have suggestions, please contact me:
@ 2:2437/301.7 (FidoNet)
@ 70:712/121.7 (VPLNet Germany)
@ 46:9611/1042.7 (VNet)
@ 37:105/300.7 (TrekNet TNG Germany)
31174 Schellerten, GERMANY
Phone: (Germany) (0 51 23) 47 84, from 06:00 to 22:00 GMT (but remember daylight savings... ;) )