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Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow Empires can use

 
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Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow Empi... - 6/17/2020 4:03:19 PM   
zgrssd

 

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There is a lot of tech that we developed on earth, but are no longer using. Something about them just did not work out. However, often a reason it did not work out was the times it became avalible or relative abundance of another resources. The Abundance of fossil fuels being propably the biggest killer of ideas by far!
However those same Resources may well be very scarce on any Shadow Empire Planets.
So all those technologies we dropped? They can be very valuable for Shadow Empires.

This is a thread for gathering examples of such technologies. Ideally you should mention:
- name of the technology
- when and how it was developed (ideally use a Wikipedia Link to history)
- why it was dropped (aka, "what killed it?")
- the gameplay effect such a technology could have
Post #: 1
RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 6/17/2020 4:18:37 PM   
zgrssd

 

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My first two examples are a bit of a cheat, because they are already there - just on a way to high tech level from my point of view!

Electrical Motors
Currently that tech is in Propulsion, 4 whole groups away from the starter techs.
History: The thing is, we had electrical Motors and batteries done by 1800 to lastet 1900.
What killed it: Fossil Fuels. Simply put, refining and putting Gasoline into engines prooved to be way more convenient. As a result, battery technology more or less stalled. The reason Electrical Motors are not as good on earth, is because they were 100-200 years behind Fossil Fuel Burners.
And especially during colonisation of moons, using Electrical Moters makes a whole lot more sense then Fossil fuel burners. Planets that have open air farming can propably get by using Biofuel Plants, but everyone else really has no reason to even restart with that.
Gameplay effect: Electrical Motors become avalible at way lower tech - propably with fuel burners. However, the early ones may not be very efficient. Both "Fuel" capacity and consumption may be very unfavorable. Additional techs would improove that, until we get to current day tech around Advanced Chemistry or Propulsion.

Gas Powered Small Arms
Currently that tech is in Advanced Engineering, 3 Groups from starter Techs and 2 from Automatic Rifles. Again, way to deep..
History: Originally I thought the idea of using Air Rifles as miltiary gear was not sensible. But turns out, it is very sensible.
What killed it: The Air Reservoirs. With the technology back then they were very hard to manufacture, very fragile and refilling them was a (literal) chore.
With pumping and manufacturing tech somewhat more this century it should not be an issue. We put gasses into tanks all the time!
Gameplay effect: It would stay a low ammo-consumption gun. It would just come before Automatic Rifles, rather then after.

(in reply to zgrssd)
Post #: 2
RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 6/17/2020 4:37:09 PM   
zgrssd

 

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Bicycle Generator:
Take a bicycle. Remove the aft wheel put a dynamo there instead. You got a way to generate power.
History: The Dynamo part is a 1832 thing.
The bicycle is a bit hardert quantify. 1817 is the earliest thing that could apply. But I guess the invention of the chain drive is the leap we need, wich was 1880.
What killed it: It is not really dead. Still in use in 3rd world countries and emergency cases to this day. However generally every other form of power generation is better.
Gameplay effect: This would be a worker intenstive way of converting food (all those extra callories people are burning) into energy.

Stirling engine:
The Stirling e ngine is a way to generate work from a heat differential.
History: It is a contemporary of the Steam Engine, 1817.
What kileld it: The availibility of Steam Engines and the low overall work the engine can do. However they have been making a comeback in the 20th century: They are used in Submarines and even heat-concetration solar power. They are like a steam engine, except you do not need water or pressure bodies.
Gameplay effect: Generate power wherever there is a temperature differential. Particulary with Volcanos on a Ice Planet.

< Message edited by zgrssd -- 1/25/2021 11:00:11 AM >

(in reply to zgrssd)
Post #: 3
RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 6/17/2020 4:43:42 PM   
Malevolence


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quote:

ORIGINAL: zgrssd
Gas Powered Small Arms
Currently that tech is in Advanced Engineering, 3 Groups from starter Techs and 2 from Automatic Rifles. Again, way to deep..
History: Originally I thought the idea of using Air Rifles as miltiary gear was not sensible. But turns out, it is very sensible.
What killed it: The Air Reservoirs. With the technology back then they were very hard to manufacture, very fragile and refilling them was a (literal) chore.
With pumping and manufacturing tech somewhat more this century it should not be an issue. We put gasses into tanks all the time!
Gameplay effect: It would stay a low ammo-consumption gun. It would just come before Automatic Rifles, rather then after.


As a note, the issue is not capability, but feasibility. Snuffy already has a lot of tasks on their plate. Gas Powered handheld weapons separate two sustainment issues: (1) projectile and (2) propellant. With respect to killing machines, the KISS principle is in full effect.

You are much more likely to see the end of the ammunition's metallic case with a sealed magazine that holds all rounds. That improvement both reduces weight and eliminates another Snuffy task (i.e. loading magazines).



< Message edited by Malevolence -- 6/17/2020 4:57:17 PM >


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(in reply to zgrssd)
Post #: 4
RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 6/17/2020 5:19:43 PM   
zgrssd

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Malevolence

quote:

ORIGINAL: zgrssd
Gas Powered Small Arms
Currently that tech is in Advanced Engineering, 3 Groups from starter Techs and 2 from Automatic Rifles. Again, way to deep..
History: Originally I thought the idea of using Air Rifles as miltiary gear was not sensible. But turns out, it is very sensible.
What killed it: The Air Reservoirs. With the technology back then they were very hard to manufacture, very fragile and refilling them was a (literal) chore.
With pumping and manufacturing tech somewhat more this century it should not be an issue. We put gasses into tanks all the time!
Gameplay effect: It would stay a low ammo-consumption gun. It would just come before Automatic Rifles, rather then after.


As a note, the issue is not capability, but feasibility. Snuffy already has a lot of tasks on their plate. Gas Powered handheld weapons separate two sustainment issues: (1) projectile and (2) propellant. With respect to killing machines, the KISS principle is in full effect.

The original worked with 18th century tech. It was particulary usefull in poor supply situations, as all you need is something to shoot and someone to pump - no Blackpowder.

And it is already in the game. It just comes after Automatic Rifles, rather then after Carbines. It's specialty is using particualry little ammo, for a 75 Firepower.

(in reply to Malevolence)
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RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 6/17/2020 6:50:07 PM   
Malevolence


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I was just noting Gas Powered Small Arms as incongruous as designed.

It was not a criticism of your suggestion.



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*Please remember all posts are made by a malevolent, autocratic despot whose rule is marked by unjust severity and arbitrary behavior. Your experiences may vary.

(in reply to zgrssd)
Post #: 6
RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 6/17/2020 10:04:25 PM   
GodwinW


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Minefields: anti-tank mines and anti-personnel mines both.

I think it would be a very nice strategical addition. Should also add minesweeper vehicles as well then.

"His border is undefended! Let's go!
... oh."

(Should be a third row tier tech. Later than RPG's and before Lasers. Imo.)


(in reply to Malevolence)
Post #: 7
RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 12/19/2020 11:19:15 PM   
zgrssd

 

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Chlorine triflouride
How about a flamethrower that can work on concrete and metal - even in a vacuum!*
History: Nazi Germany considered it as flamethrower "fuel". NASA considered it as oxydizer for Rockets. We are still using it as cleaning agent.*
What killed it: It was deemed too reactive for both applications!* Yeah. that is right: Nazi Germany considerd it too dangerous to put into a flamethrower. And Nasa considered as too dangerous to put into Rockets.*
We still use it as a cleaning agent for realy extreme scenarios - namely all those were plasma is not deemed suitable.
Gameplay Effect: A flamethrower that basically works on everything humans can build, without needing Oxygen (so it works just about anywhere).

*I can not overstate how burny that stuff is. This thing is not a fuel for a fire - it is the Oxydizer treating just about everything as fuel.
Normal fire is just realy fast oxydisation. Stuff stops burning if either the temperature drops too low, runs out of Oxygen or the stuff becomes fully satuarted with Oxygen - wich is why Ash, Asbestos and a bunch of other things can not burn with Oxygen (anymore). Any fire with Oxygen as Oxidizer you can douse simply by depriving it of oxygen - including sufficating it under some noble gas.
Well, flouride is a better oxyidizer then Oxygen. It can use just about anything as fuel. Indeed if will rip out the oxygen just to be in it's place. Stuff that Oxygenfires can not burn anymore, especially burn with it (it is a fire that can burn other fires). You can not suffucate it, because it is the Oxydizer.

There was once a spill of about 1 ton. It burned through 30 cm of asphalt. And 90 cm of gravel below the asphalt!

NASA engineer John Drury Clark summarized the difficulties:

quote:

It is, of course, extremely toxic, but that's the least of the problem. It is hypergolic with every known fuel, and so rapidly hypergolic that no ignition delay has ever been measured. It is also hypergolic with such things as cloth, wood, and test engineers, not to mention asbestos, sand, and water—with which it reacts explosively. It can be kept in some of the ordinary structural metals—steel, copper, aluminum, etc.—because of the formation of a thin film of insoluble metal fluoride that protects the bulk of the metal, just as the invisible coat of oxide on aluminum keeps it from burning up in the atmosphere. If, however, this coat is melted or scrubbed off, and has no chance to reform, the operator is confronted with the problem of coping with a metal-fluorine fire. For dealing with this situation, I have always recommended a good pair of running shoes.

Note "Hypergolic" means roughly "spontaneous combustion at room temperature".

Oh, and triflouride is not even the worst:
We figured out Chlorine Pentaflouride by adding two Flouride atom to Triflouride. But there are other formulas. It also reacts with stuff like Gold and Platinum.

And then there is Dioxygen Difluoride, or as it is coliqually called: FOOF. We only tested this stuff once - at -100°C. And it still caused fires and explosions with just about everything. It even burns Chlorine triflouride! (It is fire, that burns fires wich burn other fires!)

< Message edited by zgrssd -- 12/21/2020 10:16:47 AM >

(in reply to GodwinW)
Post #: 8
RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 12/19/2020 11:52:48 PM   
Maerchen

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: zgrssd


Electrical Motors
Currently that tech is in Propulsion, 4 whole groups away from the starter techs.
History: The thing is, we had electrical Motors and batteries done by 1800 to lastet 1900.
What killed it: Fossil Fuels. Simply put, refining and putting Gasoline into engines prooved to be way more convenient. As a result, battery technology more or less stalled. The reason Electrical Motors are not as good on earth, is because they were 100-200 years behind Fossil Fuel Burners.
And especially during colonisation of moons, using Electrical Moters makes a whole lot more sense then Fossil fuel burners. Planets that have open air farming can propably get by using Biofuel Plants, but everyone else really has no reason to even restart with that.
Gameplay effect: Electrical Motors become avalible at way lower tech - propably with fuel burners. However, the early ones may not be very efficient. Both "Fuel" capacity and consumption may be very unfavorable. Additional techs would improove that, until we get to current day tech around Advanced Chemistry or Propulsion.




The electrical motor tech hasn't changed much since 19th century. It is the battery tech that is and was the problem. High energy density (low weight/reach), quick charge (refuelling) and relatively safety (and sustainability, but that wouldn't matter for SE) are still the problems.

And it was an electricity related invention that paved the road for mass mobilization with combustion engine cars: The electric starter. After it got implemented into combustion cars, driving a combustion engine powered car became convenient rather than time consuming, dirty and stressful. You could even start the car while it was raining cats & dogs!


Anyway, I support your idea. Make electrical motors an earlier tech, with an applied sciences branch for energy density optimization, extending range and reducing energy need.



_____________________________

The logistics hell this game is IS the fun part! - Maerchen, 2020

The good thing is, we have all the information in the reports. The bad thing is, we have all the information. Maerchen, 2020

Came for SE. Will stay for SE.

(in reply to zgrssd)
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RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 12/21/2020 3:07:03 PM   
Kamelpov

 

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Bicycle infantry like good old time.

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RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 12/23/2020 10:42:26 PM   
Elver

 

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The extremely obvious one, along the lines of the aforementioned bike dragoons, would be fauna-mounted cavalry & dragoons. We already have cavalry for minors, but it'd be nice if we could tame some of the abominations on these planets. Some of them already can only be said to be weaker than tanks b/c they don't have any sort of gun mounted...

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RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 1/24/2021 12:12:59 AM   
zgrssd

 

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Mounted Cavalry and Bicycles (as extension to Motorcycles)
Currently we only have Motorcycle infantry. But this one would extend it to include Mounted Riders, Bicycles and even Chariots
History: As far back as the Bronze Age, humanity has used Chariots. Once we managed to breed horses large enough to carry a human, it just became the rider. If there was not enough Horses, sometimes humanity used Bicycles. And of course the most modern option is Motorcycles
What killed it: Nothing really killed the concept of making Infantry more mobile. However there is a clear preference for some modes of transprotation over others:
Back in the Bronze Age, horses had not yet been breed large enough to carry a human rider reliably. So a chariot with 2+ smaler horses was the top of the line Miltiary technology.
Once they came in breeds able to carry a rider, horses universally seemed to have replaced chariots in military settings.
When horses were sparse but roads okay, Bicycles have been used as the mount of choice a lot of times.
In modern times, the Motorcycle and Motorized Infantry have replaced the other options.
Gameplay Effect: Motorcycle infantry has one advantage over motorized infantry - you do not need extra people to drive and maintain the vehicles.
These options would propably use Food as "fuel": This simulates fodder for the animals or the extra callories burned by cycling over long distances with military gear on your back.

A Bicycle would keep the "wheel" movement type, but at a severe speed penalty given that it lacks a motor. And again, it would use food as "fuel" for all the extra callories that cycling burns.

A rideable mount would use the foot movement type. It would be faster then a human on foot. The animals would eat food, simulating the need for fodder.

A chariot is the odd one out. It is the fall back option, if there are no animals large enough to ride and you really do not want to use a bicycle. Maybe it is the poor mans Motorized Infantry. It would be the most material intensive option short of full on trucks or APC to make a unit mobile. But at least it would still be using food instead of needing fuel, wich itself can be a huge advantage.

< Message edited by zgrssd -- 1/25/2021 11:05:15 AM >

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RE: Everything old is new - outdated Earth tech Shadow ... - 1/25/2021 9:26:40 AM   
beyondwudge

 

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I must admit, I found that article on air rifles really cool.

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