The Math of Flying in Mind Weave

The Mind Weave flight math is something I’ve been working on making robust ever since I posted the Sky Schooner. It wasn’t so hard, and this morning’s swim math post was motivation to write it up and put it out there. Unfortunately, wordpress doesn’t support formatting/typesetting I need to represent vector math properly. I’ll do my best.

A flyer’s flight velocity from one second to another is given by the equation FlightMathwhere “i” is the current time and “v” is a three-element velocity vector with subscript representing the time of the velocity. The “a” vector represents the current acceleration and is a three-element vector, “a_max” is the maximum acceleration of the flyer, and “s” is a maximum speed value.

AccelerationFor purposes of flying using wind, as with the Sky Schooner, the “a_max” is the wind speed/5.7 and the maximum speed “s” is the wind speed itself. This spreadsheet is useful for playing with the flight mechanics. Vector math isn’t supported in excel, so it’s a bit of a morass. Still, its fun for testing flight scenarios. For example, the Sky Schooner Intrepid with wind speed 85 mph when flying at full speed takes at least 157 feet to come to a stop. I enjoy playing with such things, but it should definitely be improved. Right now it only supports a constant acceleration vector.

Flying creatures which do not fly by wind, magical or otherwise, will have very different definitions of maximum acceleration and top speed. Some may reach their top speed very fast, others may have a great top speed, but take a long time to reach it. A great top speed is good for travel, and a great acceleration is good for dodging in flight.

With these things defined, I am prepared to begin making flying monsters for Mind Weave, including a playable race of flyers I call Osprytes which will come in not more than a couple months.

Would you play an Ospryte in order to fly? What would you be willing to sacrifice for it? Would you use magic or enchantments to get flight otherwise? The magic that flight uses is useful for other things, there are a lot of other reasons for you to have it.

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