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OOC: Thoughts on RPing, Stats and War
Posted: Jun 13 2006, 01:24 PM
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So, yeah, we're all aware that AO is looking like it's heading for the first truly hot war in ages. Like, region-wide. And this has got me thinking (yes, I bet you can smell something burning from where you are, too) about relative power and forces and military strength of the various combatants.

Those combatants, judging on recent RPing will be Me Vs 'Everyone Else'. Starblaydia Stick, for those with knowledge of English Football terminology. Hoorah.

Now, the post that really got me thinking on this was one of Lamoni's latest in the AR Missile Testing thread. And, I quote:

QUOTE (Lamoni)
Lance Corporal Timothy Thorvaldson was gaurding the southernmost LAF base... when four squadrons of F-22 H fighter-bombers started landing and heading to their bunkers.


Now, yes you can take this as yet more Lamoni-Economy-Bashing (which it kinda is, but is part of a general point about using NS stats in RPs), but let's consider that for a moment. First, some definitions.

Squardron: "An air force, army aviation or naval aviation squadron typically consists of three or four flights, with a total of 12 to 24 aircraft, depending on aircraft type and air force."

The F-22 Raptor (cost):"In April 2006, the Government Accountability Office estimated the cost to $361 million per aircraft"

Ok, so, being conservative, that's 4 squadrons of 12 = 48 aircraft. 48 aircraft at $360 million each is a total of $17.2 billion.

Lamonian annual defence budget (according to NSEconomy): Defence: $66,619,934,395.20 (13%)

$66 billion. So those four squadrons, to buy, represent a quarter of what the Lamonian Government spends on defence in a year. And that's quite a lot for less than 50 planes. Don't convert that into Lamoni's currency - Rushanas - unless you like working in trillions.

"But this is just a diatribe against Lamoni because you don't like how many planes/guns/etc he says has!" I hear you cry. But this is just based on stats that NS gives out and NSEconomy spits out some numbers - admittedly biased against high-tax economies. So? Well, Lamoni also has 7.5 billion people in it, there's an NS stat that is used very often to determine RP numbers, like percentages of population in the armed forces. 'I have more people than you, therefore more people in the army. I have an imploded economy, but that doesn't matter.' See what I mean? Each nation has both good and bad points that surely must translate into RP, based on whether you want to use the stats or not.

Let's turn the attention to Starblaydia, for once. Yes, enormous military spending = lots of guns, a place where the national budget is quite literally more than one hundred times larger than Lamoni's. But then again it is a dictatorship. Even in South America where ex-dictatorships are doing really badly as Democracies, they're not yelling for a dictator to take control back. It's very hard to love a dictatorship, and so Starblaydia's people are, comparatively, not as loyal to their nation as those in free states. Unless you point a TV camera at them, and they have to love the state or else they'll be hunted down. Indoctrination, small-scale brainwashing and large-scale propaganda can only get you so far.

Spending 20 trillion dollars a year on the military allows nations like Starblaydia (and democracies too, don't forget) to field enough battleships, tanks, planes and - yes - spacecraft to flatten a country.

So, military-wise, take a look at your nation. Check it on NSEconomy (or similar) here. Just what can you field, what can you afford? Look at your nation, itis stats and how you RP it objectively, if you can, and then see what you come up with.

Oh boy this has been longer than I thought, but hopefully worth it. Now you can reply, if you want. And please do, I'd like some other input on this.

Star
Starblaydia
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 01:34 PM
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/pwn

You're right on that. Basically I feel if you're not willing to put in the work on the main NS site you shouldn't be RPing a total opposite on the forums. Put some realism into your work.
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 01:39 PM
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QUOTE (Pacitalia @ Jun 13 2006, 07:34 PM)
...if you're not willing to put in the work on the main NS site you shouldn't be RPing a total opposite on the forums...

Thanks, Pac. I wouldn't quite put it that way, though, as clicking 'less taxes' and 'more guns' in appropriate issues is too simple for this as there's no 'right way' to run a nation.
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 01:42 PM
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QUOTE (Starblaydia @ Jun 13 2006, 10:39 AM)
QUOTE (Pacitalia @ Jun 13 2006, 07:34 PM)
...if you're not willing to put in the work on the main NS site you shouldn't be RPing a total opposite on the forums...

Thanks, Pac. I wouldn't quite put it that way, though, as clicking 'less taxes' and 'more guns' in appropriate issues is too simple for this as there's no 'right way' to run a nation.

Quite, quite. Though I've noticed with some players they find it incredibly difficult to gain and maintain a high standard of economic strength and social liberties. The issues do present a complex mix. One could totally screw you over economically but raise your civil liberties level, another could give boosts to both if you know what to choose. You know what I mean? It's still a bit complicated based on past decisions and whatnot.

That said, I agree that the effort needs to be put into the RP. It's not too difficult to get a higher military budget and an at least reasonable economy, so once one gets that he/she can just focus on the RP at hand, where the talent and effort should be going.
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 01:47 PM
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This is why I don't RP as having a particularly impressive military. And also why I generally stay out of solitary war. I'm fair game for alliances, though. Crack troops, anyone?
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 01:51 PM
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Who wants to maintain "high standard of economic strength and social liberties"? I like my dictatorship, thankyou very much! biggrin.gif

Issue answering either reflects your national culture or your own personal culture - I think players tend to use their nations as one or the other - and whichever you decide to play as, that is your nation's culture on NS. If you're a Tyranny By Majority, for instance, RP as one in all its aspects - the same with any other type of UN Classification. Unless your Issue-Choice had an undesired effect on the category.

For instance, last time I was in the UN Starblaydia suddenly became an Inoffensive Centrist Democracy because I allowed political cartoons - something it certainly wasn't. So I still RPed as a Dictatorship (and am now back as a Father Knows Best state, where I want to be), just with the twist that 'those fools at the UN' took Provincal Governor voting to be 'Some' Political freedoms.
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 02:16 PM
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/agree

You could just do what I do. Use harsh elements as a good defence, make mid-quality weapons for mass-amounts of troops, make mid-quality tanks and ships (or use ally's ships) for transport. I spend quite a bit of funding to make excellent planes, just not 361 million per craft. About 1.3 Million per craft at least. With my exchange rate and great economy, I can do the math to figure out my other military spending evenly. Star is right, NSEconomy is a great way to determine every little budget spending. There is even a "Defence" sector. wink.gif
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 03:29 PM
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QUOTE (Starblaydia)
So, military-wise, take a look at your nation. Check it on NSEconomy (or similar) here. Just what can you field, what can you afford? Look at your nation, itis stats and how you RP it objectively, if you can, and then see what you come up with.

First, NSEconomy stats have never been adjusted for inflation. For example, the price of gold in USD has gone up approximately 43% since 2004–04–24 (from 1 g Au being worth USD 12.712 to 18.173), according to xe.com. Since NSEconomy was created sometime around 2004–04–24, I use the exchange rate on that day when converting from NSEconomy USD to gold.

Second, even if we accept NSEconomy figures without adjusting for inflation, it’s absurd that the Capitalizt government has a budget of USD 36.4 trillion. Divide that number by 100†000, and it might still be a bit high. tongue.gif

And finally, since the government’s pathetic military (which is now even more pathetic after the war in Lukeonia) would be irrelevant in any significant conflict, what good would stats do in determining the strength of the Capitalizt Defense Alliance and Capitalizt Coalition for CoŲperation in Protection?

This post has been edited by Commerce Heights on Jun 13 2006, 03:32 PM
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 05:00 PM
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Now that really trashes any arguement worth having over stats, but as everyone's 'suffering;' from that same lack of 43% rise, does it actually matter when figuring these things out?

As for the enormous budgets, we are dealing with billions of citizens in most cases, far bigger than China, some even bigger than the world. If an RL single world economy was all run in the same way, then wouldnt numbers into the trillions be gained from tax?

Stats give you budgets, which give you how much you can spend on things. Seems pretty simple to me: Buy stuff, develop and produce stuff, maintain stuff. Probably more simple than in reality, but something that you can play about with in an RP framework, at least.
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 05:14 PM
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I'm slightly surprised. Despite having priorities toward social welfare (education, social equality and healthcare are my top three priorities), and having a pro-environment government, I still manage to have about a trillion dollars in defense, according to NSEconomy. Go 100% tax rate! wink.gif

Anyway, I've always tried to set my military to be similar to the United States with a few improvements here and there. While my air force has units modeled after the F-22 and F-35, with some adjustments, they're currently considered too costly for full-scale production, and so my mainstay fighter is basically a slightly improved version of the F-16. My navy has no superdreadnaughts (far too costly to buy and maintain) and instead is carrier-based, with a few large non-carrier ships, the Dominance-class battleship, which is basically and improved version of the Iowa, and the Defiance-class, which is basically a Ticonderoga on steroids. Even then, I don't have very many of them. My army doesn't have anything special either.
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 06:13 PM
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(EDIT: This is, of course, CH’s puppet…)

QUOTE (Starblaydia)
Now that really trashes any arguement worth having over stats, but as everyone's 'suffering;' from that same lack of 43% rise, does it actually matter when figuring these things out?

Whether inflation is significant depends on what things you’re figuring out. If you’re comparing two figures that are adjusted for inflation, it doesn’t matter, if you’re comparing two figures that aren’t adjusted for inflation, it also doesn’t matter. But if you’re comparing the inflated price of an F-22 to the unadjusted Lamoni defense budget, it might matter.

QUOTE (Starblaydia)
As for the enormous budgets, we are dealing with billions of citizens in most cases, far bigger than China, some even bigger than the world. If an RL single world economy was all run in the same way, then wouldnt numbers into the trillions be gained from tax?

I wasn’t talking about a generic nation of 6.5 billion people, I was talking specifically about my nation, in which there are no taxes, and the government budget is neither in the trillions nor the billions.

QUOTE (Starblaydia)
Stats give you budgets, which give you how much you can spend on things. Seems pretty simple to me: Buy stuff, develop and produce stuff, maintain stuff. Probably more simple than in reality, but something that you can play about with in an RP framework, at least.

Stats give me government budgets, which are completely irrelevant in determining how much money a corporation has to spend on things.

*sends Starblaydia back to capitalizm 101* tongue.gif

This post has been edited by Lontorika on Jun 13 2006, 06:14 PM
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 06:29 PM
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I am shocking when it comes to designing/determining anything related to war. As such I use pretty much exclusively Sarz's Storefront.

But I am also starting to gather information for a potential project that I am looking at programming.

Essentially it would be a Military Calculator:

Takes XML data and uses NSEconomy algorithms to generate a budget for your military.

Determine proportion of Budget going to Infantry, Navy, Airforce and Space Program.

Ability to import data from any supporting storefronts (Most likely XML file)

Use these details as well as setting an appropraite percentage of your popoulation that is in the armed forces to determine how much of what aircraft you can own.

Will take into account administrative functions of the armed forces (heavily discussion on the NS Draftroom will take place for this)

The aim is to provide military realism...

This is still very much is still in the designing phase.
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 07:51 PM
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QUOTE (Commerce Heights @ Jun 13 2006, 03:29 PM)
Second, even if we accept NSEconomy figures without adjusting for inflation, itís absurd that the Capitalizt government has a budget of USD 36.4 trillion. Divide that number by 100 000, and it might still be a bit high. tongue.gif


Shut up... you and your silly mass-amounts of wealth tongue.gif
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Posted: Jun 13 2006, 11:31 PM
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I just wish I could figure out how to keep my economy from going down the toilet. Also, I'm pissed that the Mavs lost. Either way, for my military, I'm just relying on the fanatic loyalty of the troops to their leader...me. You'd be suprised what a few fanatics can do. *evil laugh*
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Posted: Jun 14 2006, 12:08 AM
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I do like the idea, but have to agree with CH's points on the iflation values.

I run my nation as a democratic socialist state but it tends to float back and forth to inoffensive centralist democracy. That doesnt bother me and does not change the way I RP it.

As for my military, I have been doing things to make improvements, but ASMV is not a dominant nation by any means. Without spending for expensive aircraft as well a massing large numbers of soldiers, I do have some great ideas to even the odds. But that will come out a bit later with some new equipment designs i have been working on. As for my navy, it is fairly large, but most of it would have to be considered outdated by most. (Most ships based on refits of RL WWII through Vietnam Polish vessals). But hey, they work well enough with upgraded equipment. As I can afford to build or purchase newer ones, I will be doing so.

But i do like the fact of having something to base things on. That eliminates the more ludicrous RP extremes.
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