To keep the utility balanced, have them only collect 1 item per trip. Having 5 out, they could all grab 1 item each, to empty up to 5 from a wreck. Otherwise, add salvage drone rules. Fills those spaces where a MTU is overkill, or you’re not worried about salvage.
Sounds reasonable, good, new purpose, not op, cost is drone bandwidth.
EDIT: Not sure if looting player wrecks should be included /discuss?
I like this idea.
I don’t think a looting drone would necessarily need to be restricted to one item per trip, where a reasonably sized capacity would work just as well. (limited to 5m3 to only accommodate a single small module or smaller items, for example).
And, yes I think player wrecks should be included, so long as all of the usual flags, timers, and other triggers apply as normal.
I have worries about the m3 of large items being transported by tiny drones.
Don’t forget packaged battleships fall under loot.
Maybe a limit on the size of what they can loot would be appropriate. Or make it always loot upto a certain m3 like mining drones.
I can forsee some hurdles for stacked items. Do they take the whole stack or just one from the stack? Because a stack of ammo is very different to a stack of ships.
Loot drones have been talked about in the past, generally met with opposition due to being AFK friendly.
This undermines the people who meticulously trained Looting V. Unless they’re extremely slow i.e 500m/s or less, and only loot the cheapest value items first then everyone would just deploy looting drones instead of combat drones in fleet fights.
Right, but only one item at a time?
So if someone has 1000 anti matter rounds in a wreck, it takes the drone a thousand trips? Or does it take the stack?
If it takes the stack, what about someone who has 1000 small shield extender II’s? Each item is 5m3…
Just wanted to point that out to the op.
I think there has to be a hold capacity and the drone has to take what it can carry and make multiple trips only if it has to, just like a person would do.
Anything it can’t do the pilot has to do. T2 has more hold maybe.
They should definitely be limited to avoid, as was stated, ‘afk friendly’ gameplay.
As for capacity, realistically, some modules do go up quite a bit in size, such as cloaks. Not all follow the size of weapons. Taking a real life approach here, a tugboat can pull a ship MANY times its size. At a maximum, something capable of collecting the largest modules found on non-Capital ships or other goods of the same size or lower. Perhaps disallow picking up containers, or packaged ships, outright.
To handle ‘things in route’, and potential over-capacity, and present a little risk… perhaps tie drones to ship capacity. If your cargohold can’t take it, then the drone orbits until it can drop cargo off, and if picked up, it simply releases its cargo as a jet can. If link is lost, also jets contents, in case the ship leaves or dies.
If a person afk’s and fills up, they will then be sitting in space, Gophers orbitting, and nothing being collected. The loot can still be collected on ship loss.
Stacks should be treated as single items, up to whatever capacity is decided.
Alternatively, make them take the same space and bandwidth as an ice mining drone, so that only 1 and no other drones can be fielded (with a few special exceptions), and have it collect contents of an entire wreck at a time.
Again, you’d want to avoid situations such as packaged ships, excessive stack volume, or containers.
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