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Feedback Thread: Replacing the Gadpathur Corvette's Longbow

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I was asked to make a feedback thread on this PR, as this is a controversial change among developers. I already outlined my very clear reasoning as to why a Longbow should not be on the deck of a patrolling corvette, but I will reiterate for the sake of the community. As this is a forum post, I'm going to get long and I'm going to use images.

The Longbow is a 406mm cannon. The USS Iowa, a battleship and one of the last leading ships of the American Navy, has several of these cannons. Here is her firing them in a full broadside:


The scale of these cannons are probably not immediately obvious from first glance. So here's an unexploded 406mm shell:


The ship that fired this, the USS New Jersey, is the same class of ship as the Iowa up there (an Iowa-class). Let me show you the Iowa's cannons up close:


These are big, and heavy. Their ammunition weighs a lot. The Iowa is a battleship, and she measures nearly 900 feet from bow to stern. How big is a corvette, you ask? Let's take a look at a Flower-class corvette, the HMCS Regina.


From bow to stern, she measures about 200 feet. Corvettes are not heavy artillery ships; they are patrolling, quick-recon vessels that are not equipped with heavy armament because it will slow them down. You could probably weld a 406mm cannon to the deck of a corvette, sure, but that doesn't mean it's going to be sailing very fast.

The same applies in space. Yes, when crafting space vessels, weight is a factor! Particularly when you are considering something the size of a 406mm cannon, and its ammunition. It's just plain incorrect to handwave this and say "oh, Gadpathur is a militarized society, they would just stick a massively oversized cannon on a tiny little patrol vessel". This would not work because the vessel needs to move. Even the most inefficiently-militarized society is going to understand you can't give a glock to a spider.

Let's move on from yapping about LARP and move on to the more important aspect: lore and balance.

No other corvette-class vessel in the game has a Longbow. Not the Dominian or Elyran corvettes, which have arguably more advanced militaries than Gadpathur, and not the TCAF corvette, which has better military funding from the most powerful megacorporations in the galaxy. The reason the Horizon has a Longbow is because it's really big. It's a cruiser-class! It can field a cannon and ammunition of that size.

On the other hand of balance, none of the more antagonistic offships, like the Freebooter and the SFA corvette, are armed to this extent. Not only does it skew the balance of gameplay in favour of the "good guys", it causes a creep in power. The solution here is not to also give the Freebooter and SFA Longbow cannons, but to keep other offships on a relatively balanced, smaller scale. When the power of gameplay elements creep up too much, it devalues conflict; people get bored and inured to every battle having the maximum amount of firepower that there can be in the game.

Anyway that's why I want to give the Gaddie corvette a Grau instead of a Longbow thanks for coming to my TEDtalk.

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Naval ships in the 2000s aren't the same as space corvettes in the 2400s

Current ships have to contend with gravity and water attrition, which are the main limiting factor on their weight and operational endurance, neither of which are issues in space, thanks to being in a vacuum with (more or less) zero gravity

The only issue you'd experience with overloading a ship would be lower accelleration and decelleration


Your example shows a battleship, apart that they are going out of favor (along with ballistic naval warfare), it shows a total of nine 406mm, which I think to be intuitive to be different from having a single one, both in terms of weight of the gun itself and ammunitions required to keep them fed and firing

Also, the assumption that they would be equivalent in barrel length is just assumed, you can significantly reduce the weight of a gun with a short barrel, or vice versa increase it with a long barrel

Long barrels are beneficial for precision as, when they are rifled, imprints a spin on the projectile that helps it maintain stability when traversing through air, something you don't need in space, as there's no air

Let's also not forget that the USS Iowa is closer in time to the HMS Hercule, a capital ship built in 1798 that mounted as the largest guns the 36-pounder (174.8mm) smooth bore guns than our setting, so by mere caliber inflation (and not considering that capital ships were in comparison with other ships of the time bigger than battleships are), and assuming a constant rate, every class should have more than four times the caliber than their contemporary cousins currently have by this factor alone, without even considering the better propulsion given by phoron (and being in space), the better materials they're supposed to fight against (plasteel anyone?) etc. etc.; of course none of this matter because it's a game, it's fiction, realism doesn't matter, but if it did, it would work in favor of the longbow more than in favor of its removal


It's true the Horizon is a larger ship, a cruiser, however this seems to fail to mention that it has another 2 guns aswell, and it's also a civilian ship, while for what I can see this corvette possesses a single longbow

Additionally, caliber isn't everything, in terminal ballistic the delivered power is the weight of the bullet and the speed it's traveling at; the gadpathurian corvette is equipped with low-power ones (as you was already told in the PR by Dreamy), the bullets won't have much kinetic energy to deliver

For example, russian corvettes of the bora class bring around a total of eight 800mm P-270 Moskit anti-ship missles (diameter isn't everything), as well as twenty anti-air 9K33 Osa 209.6mm, a 76.2mm AK-176M cannon, two 30mm gatlings, two naval machineguns and an anti-saboteur grenade launcher

The gaddie corvette mounts a single gun


It's possible for an army to be perfectly fine with having slow manouvering ships in exchange for additional fire power, especially if the ships are expected to be used in a defensive stance, which hey would you look at that it's probably gadpathur ("Never again fall")


Also, I find kind of odd to pull out the HMCS Regina as an example, it's wrong both on the class (it's an halifax class frigade, not a corvette) and the type, it's built as an anti-submarine ship, its role isn't to fight other ships, it is made specifically to be fast so it can scout for, and intercept, submarines and protect the convoy

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I wish instead we had more ship gun types, something in between Grauwolf and Longbow, and the Gaddie ship could have that gun.

But until then, I think Longbow is fine.

What I very much hate is making it so all ships just use the same gun, the grauwolf and/or francesca. They already mostly do.

It's incredibly dull and boring.

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Original author of the ship here. I added the longbow as the Grauwolf/Francisca combo was used by pretty much every other ship currently. I tried to reflect it as a lower power longbow by giving it low power ammo, but as dreamy said:

4 hours ago, Dreamix said:

I wish instead we had more ship gun types, something in between Grauwolf and Longbow, and the Gaddie ship could have that gun.


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Hello, I’m the original writer of Gadpathur and have helped design some of the off-ship spawns we currently have. I did not do anything regarding this corvette aside from, as I recall, telling the creator it was too well-armed for my liking. It’s got a Longbow, a very well-stocked armory, and a backup gun. The Longbow is a huge gun and this makes the corvette arguably more well-armed than anything aside from the Horizon — the only thing that comes close is the Dominia corvette, which has a 200mm gun on it. 


Please remove the Longbow and replace it with something smaller. If giving it flak is an issue, surely it can be given a smaller main gun (perhaps even one made on Gadpathur) and still be fine assuming the sprites are there.

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I'm the Mapper that asked for a Feedback thread. 
I do want to point out something, aside from the fact that we haven't had Battleships in service since 2006, and the Iowa was decommissioned in the 90's.. The American military doctrine is to utilize overwhelming force in any situation possible, whether it be offensive or defensive warfare. Doctrinally, the USN/USAF/US Army all have big guns on small things because we recognize that overwhelming firepower makes the scales on a battlefield tip in our favor. So, with that said, it makes sense for an overmilitarized society to have something like this. 

From a purely gameplay point of view, I think the ship having the Longbow is completely fine. We do not have any set standards on what ships can have what based on size/classification - to my knowledge. (I could be wrong on this, but I didn't find anything when I went searching for it)

I like that the ship has a Longbow. I think militarized ships SHOULD be well armed and harder to engage with. Why would a military vessel be equal enough for a non-military ship (See the Freebooters)? We said the best way to nerf this is to just give them shittier ammunition. Low primers, for example. 

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1 hour ago, ReadThisNamePlz said:

From a purely gameplay point of view, I think the ship having the Longbow is completely fine. We do not have any set standards on what ships can have what based on size/classification - to my knowledge. (I could be wrong on this, but I didn't find anything when I went searching for it)

It's not documented officially because not a lot of stuff on maps is, so admittedly it's not very easy to find. However, Alberyk above has said he thinks Longbows are OP. Here's Matt saying he thinks Longbows are OP.


It doesn't matter if you limit a Longbow's ammo to balance it, because if a Longbow gets one hit off on pretty much any third-parties, you can kiss your ass goodbye. Hit pretty much any of the essential ship systems with an HE or a bunker-buster shell, and you can quickly disable the Freebooter, the Ranger Gunboat, etc etc.

I feel like I should also mention I'm not a fan of the Horizon having the Leviathan (which I've posted about before), and most of the reason I'm chill with a Longbow on the Horizon is because it's a cruiser-class. I don't really mind a Longbow on the Xanan frigate because it's a frigate, but I think the Xanan frigate exists because the Gaddie corvette sets that precedent of gradually-increasing firepower. It's not really something I want to see in future offships because of aforementioned power creep.

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19 minutes ago, La Villa Strangiato said:

It's not really something I want to see in future offships because of aforementioned power creep

I made a comment about this in the mapper coordination channel on the discord, but I'll reiterate it here. 

Every faction is and should be fundamentally different when it comes to ship design/militarization structure. I don't think powercreep is a real issue when it comes to overmap ships, I actually would prefer to see more heavily armed ships being made to make the universe feel more "real". It's not very interesting to have six different ships that all use the same amount of firepower. (This is no ones fault, we just have very few guns that are usable). 

24 minutes ago, La Villa Strangiato said:

Here's Matt saying he thinks Longbows are OP.

Ultimately, the Gaddie ship was up for a while before it was merged (October 8 to December 5 of 2023). I don't remember how long, tbh. But the Longbow being on it was approved by the devteam at the time and Matt merged it. So when it comes to the comment from 2022, I think ideas on the game-balance with the overmap have potentially shifted or changed entirely, which is why I labelled the PR with maintainer discussion.  

I don't think the Gadpathurian ship, or any Military ship should be remotely close to being a near-peer for any third party ship. This is something that I hope to change in the coming months, as well. A small trade ship with a Grauwolf should not be able to go toe to toe with any military vessel. Gadpathurian, Solarian pirates, Xanan, TCAF, etc. I think there should be a clear imbalance of power when it comes to specific overmap ships due to the way our lore sets up a lot of the factions. Again, Gadpathur is an overly militaristic society. I think them having a big fuck-off cannon fits them entirely. 

either way, I just wanted this to be discussed by the maintainers, and for a standard to be appropriately formulated and documented 

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