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Stewart
April 7th, 2003, 11:31 PM
I have a serious case of writers block and I have decided that in an attempt to break it I am going to write a short story about mecha just for fun. A) Because I love Mecha B) It would be good practice any ways.
But while I am doing thsi for fun I want to write it in a serious manner and I find myself stuck on something. Anyone here watch MS Gundam? Well if you have you have seen the way the Mecha engage in close combat, they move exactly like humans and I have always found this somewhat foolish considering the cartoons only give the pilot a simple joystick to control the weapons and no joystick could allow such precise reaction so quickly, and well. So I am trying to decide whether or not to just ignore this and go along the path of MS Gundam and use a fighter-like cockpit or use some kind of psychic connection thing to control the mecha.

ceros
April 7th, 2003, 11:47 PM
I haven't seen the series, but we're talking something futuristic. I would either go for the mind-link, or develop some other sort of interface to the machine. What about sensors that track the motion of the eyes and head? Are there foot pedals? Voice commands? There's more, but I can't think of them right now, but you get the jist. Any or all of the above could be an option.

P.S. I'm an interaction designer (multimedia artist) by trade, so I always have to come up with unique ways to do the same old stuff. Give it some thought, but don't make it too complicated, unless you expect to make the story long enough to explain it all.

Chlestron
April 8th, 2003, 12:55 AM
The only Gundam stuff I've seen had the pilots in full body suits controlling the robot by their own actions. I personally don't understand why the Mecha would mimic human motions either. A 2-legged robot is WAY harder to make than a four legged one though it's harder to do some of the cool moves.

As for giant robot control - in RobotJox (bad movie) the pilots had a very sophisticated piloting station with a lot of hand controls and the legs linked to leg movements.

Mechwarrior has a complicated control panel but for the most part there's forward/backward/left/right and then turret control. Then again, those robots are basically walking tanks

I think in Robotech which I believe Gundam is based on, the controls were a pair of flight sticks.

I think in the whole Eve manga thing, there is a psychic link going on.

In Zoids, there is a control cockpit, but there is also a sort of AI that also controls the robots as they seem to have a mind of their own.

Stewart
April 8th, 2003, 08:37 AM
First off I'm pretty sure Robotech (Or Macross in Japan) came after Gundam and the Mecha in Robotech were piloted through a combination of mind-link and traditional controls. I've seen Evangelion and the psychic link there was kind of what I was thinking about but it had a lot to do with the machines being "alive" in a sense and I don't want to even touch that concept. I'll probably go with the mind-link, it just makes more sense for the type of combat I want to write.

Twelve
April 8th, 2003, 06:33 PM
Cool! I absolutely love anything to do with mechs. I want to read this short story when you're finished.

12

Stewart
April 8th, 2003, 08:19 PM
What shows do you watch? I'm a Gundam, Robotech and Evangelion fan myself although the expensive pricews on the Eva DVD's has limited my viewing.

Se'dray-on
April 8th, 2003, 10:47 PM
Just as a new idea. You could have the pilot immeresed in some sort of semi liquid that registers the movements of the body and sends the signals to the mecha body


just an idea. And something I don't think i've ever seen or heard before

pcarney
April 9th, 2003, 08:13 AM
Originally posted by Se'dray-on
Just as a new idea. You could have the pilot immeresed in some sort of semi liquid that registers the movements of the body and sends the signals to the mecha body


just an idea. And something I don't think i've ever seen or heard before

The only problem with that is- wouldn't the liquid transmit any sort of percussion the mech recieved into the unfortunate pilot? I'm thinking of a story I heard on NPR that talked about a new way to tenderize meat. They put the beef in water, in a big drum and blew some dyamite in it. Very tender meat was the result.

Twelve
April 9th, 2003, 06:42 PM
Originally posted by Stewart
What shows do you watch? I'm a Gundam, Robotech and Evangelion fan myself although the expensive pricews on the Eva DVD's has limited my viewing.

Gundam, Robotech of course(haven't read Evangelion yet)...but I'm a bigger fan of games that have to do with mechs. For example, Zone of the Enders, The Armored Core series, Front Mission series, Xenogears/Xenosaga, Ring of Red...

If its Japanese and if its mechs, you've got me hooked. I still don't understand why because my mind isn't technical enough to write about them and I'm very un-mechanical...


12

Stewart
April 9th, 2003, 09:40 PM
I hated Zone of the Ender's, Armored Core was cool but it lost replay value after awhile. Never played Xenogears or Xenosaga but I hear they are excellent. Ring of Red, was that any good?
May I suggest buying Robotech: Battlecry and Gundam: Federation vs. Zeon? Gundam is the better of the two but both are excellent games with their control schemes being some of the most ingenious I've ever seen. They can both be hard as all hell too!:D