DEFCON > General Discussions > Topic Details
Miraglyth Feb 22 @ 6:20pm
Probably stupid question about nuke pathing
Nukes curve upwards and then downwards.

Is that actually curve on the map as opposed to altitude? Because if so that seems pretty ridiculous.

Anyone in a northern region trying to nuke a southern region must have their nukes pass through the region above them (and any third-party silos that would shoot them down), whereas southern attackers will curve perfectly and hit their northern opponents' cities sideways.

I can't believe that's the case because there'd be nothing to balance this out, but it's what I'm observing. Please tell me I'm wrong?
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Robly18 Feb 23 @ 4:26am 
Yeah, I noticed that too: I think it's supposed to look like altitude, but it just kinda goes north then south. I do agree that it's kinda bad, but you gotta admit: it looks much cooler than if they just went in a straight line
Miraglyth Feb 23 @ 5:54am 
A little research of the game's FAQ topic says not only does it curve north then south, but because of a user they believe that's accurate by the way the world is projected into a rectangle.

I'm amazed by this. Even on that thread someone else correctly pointed out that anything south of the equator would curve south then north instead, and they were ignored.

Not quite sure what to say.
Ragnar Lothbrok Mar 21 @ 2:42pm 
Its the powerful northern countries not wanting to recognize that maybe they are on the bottom of the planet and Aus, S America and Africa are on the top of the planet. Who is to say which one is top or bottom? It could be either way lol
Basho Mar 25 @ 3:29pm 
this seem relevant (best i could find with some cursory googling at least) :
http://www.daftlogic.com/projects-google-maps-distance-calculator.htm
[FR]✖FΛDΣD Apr 19 @ 5:38pm 
In case you didn't know ( it' doesn't look that logical at first it's hard to get your mind around it being all 3D spherical mathematics and things ), when you travel around large distances by plane, it is better to plan a curved route. On your 2D map i mean. If you leave Paris and fly to Mexico, the ideal route, is to fly north west, and drop down south west somewhere round the end of the atlantic, and then follow the East Coast of the US all the way down there. I did that, and during the flight i got to see Canada, America and i think Florida before ending up somewhere in south Mexico. It's because we're living on sphere which is a to top things off slightly squashed, and 2D rectangular maps aren't really accurate.
I have trouble imagining why it's like that in my head but basically, long distance flying is never a straight route on a 2D map. It's down to maths i can't be bothered to research myself.
But, i don't think DEFCON pictures this curved route thing, cause even on short distances, missiles have some sort of ballistic trajectory. Which doesn't really make sense it's obviously travelling for much longer, but it sure looks a lot better. It is a bit annoying tactically speaking as some people said. It's confusing altitude and longitude.

But i should also point out that the vast majority of locations in this game are located on the northern hemisphere. So in all instances, and this is real. Missiles launched from the north will always follow a curved route when heading south east or west. Normally, a missile aimed at a target located on the same latitude shouldn't have a curved trajectory, cause this curved thing only applies when there's lateral distance to cover.
Miraglyth Apr 19 @ 6:10pm 
And yet, they curve.

The short version is, in DEFCON all nukes take a substantial and generally ill-advised detour. And yes, they're always considered to be a constant altitude.

So if South America wanted to nuke Russia, instead of a large visual arc that would fly "above" Europe when projected onto a 2D plane as Basho's link shows, DEFCON has it float through Europe, within easy shooting distance of its nuclear defenses. Yeah, that makes sense.

The annoying thing is what this arbitrary north-preferring curve does to planning, and makes some regions favourable. But I suppose gamers were a bit more forgiving of that kind of thing in 2006, considering the accolades it got.
Free Market Apr 23 @ 6:56am 
If you are concerned about the layout of the map affecting balance, you can look into mods providing custom maps. In particular, there was an elegant map simulating a US-Russia exchange over the Arctic floating around (though the only download location I can find off-hand seems sketchy).
Anon Gamer Apr 29 @ 11:02pm 
MOD IT THEN! =)
Discarded May 10 @ 8:24am 
Originally posted by Miraglyth:
Nukes curve upwards and then downwards.

Is that actually curve on the map as opposed to altitude? Because if so that seems pretty ridiculous.

Anyone in a northern region trying to nuke a southern region must have their nukes pass through the region above them (and any third-party silos that would shoot them down), whereas southern attackers will curve perfectly and hit their northern opponents' cities sideways.

I can't believe that's the case because there'd be nothing to balance this out, but it's what I'm observing. Please tell me I'm wrong?

Ignore those who say its not but its actually representing the curvature of the earth. Watch War Games or any modern day sci fi film with nukes in it and you will see they do the same thing.
Miraglyth May 10 @ 10:33am 
You're going by Hollywood science? Seriously?
MSJ-06II-C May 31 @ 6:37am 
Watch Sci-Fi to learn about the reality... sounds perfectly good to m- ohhhhhhhhhhhh
[FR]✖FΛDΣD May 31 @ 4:40pm 
Don't watch sci-fi. Just go to flight-report, look for long flights. You'll get an idea of how the path looks like. I flew from Paris to Japan and i flew over most of the northern Siberia, instead of crossing Kazakhstan, Mongolia, China etc.
zephrim Jul 23 @ 10:04pm 
Flights however are often routed due to various reasons. If the airspace is considered dangerous all air traffic is detoured. If an airspace is considered too polluted and could cause damage to the engines then the flight path is moved. If a country has been known to take shots at public aircraft then flights are supposed to be rerouted. There are a ton of reasons they divert aircraft, some reasonable some not so much so.
Miraglyth Jul 26 @ 7:39am 
Absolutely. Real flight paths aren't linear and divert AWAY from trouble.

If you were in South America and wanted to nuke northern parts of Africa, you certainly wouldn't send your nukes through Europe's nuclear defences. That doesn't make sense either geographically or tactically.

Since posting this topic I've just come to the conclusion it's bad implementation that is let off the hook because it was a different age for small-studio game design. A game making the same mistake today, even made by an indie, would probably be rightfully criticised.
Traffic Conez Jul 27 @ 4:19am 
It does that, use it to your advantage.
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