Dropship Maintenance

Dropship gameplay is pretty menial and braindead. NOT AWESOME

With a background as an aircraft mechanic, I have some ideas to change that… To me, I think an aircraft that doesnt require maintenance is preposterous…

5 systems would be added to the dropship, each representing a function of the dropship.

Each system would be made up of several components, and would ultimately tie into the databus, which is like the spine of the DS and sends system operation data to the central computer in the cockpit. Within the central computer, you’d be able to view the status and any error codes.

Over time, components in the DS will break and need to be replaced, at first, broken components won’t have much impact on flight but if left broken, it will get worse.

Examples include:
-The high pass amplifier (amplifies signals coming out of the R/T(where RF signals are received and demodulated)) will break and any signals recieved by the DS will sound garbled, and if left unfixed, more components will break and cause a comms blackout on the dropship.

-The Internal Navigation System (INS) breaks on the dropship and it will take the dropship longer to land at LZs, more components breaking will make it take longer to land shipside/colonyside

-The engines were not adequately refilled with coolant, and as such will take longer to launch after landing. If not left fixed, the conditions of the engines will get worse and worse.

-Hydraulic pumps break, doors wont lock or open

Note that the DS should always be able to take off, regardless of condition of components.

Where will these components be held? I’m thinking that the Comm and Nav systems will be located in a room accessed by removing an access panel on the exterior nose of the DS, which when clicked, you’d teleported in a room similar to the APC interior. Small and just enough room for the components and one man. Engine components in the engine and Hydraulics in the interior, again access panels. Note that removing the access panels would require a special tool.

Now, once a system breaks and you read an error code, you cross reference it in a DS Maintenance Databas, on the computers in the Pilot’s office, to find the corrective action. The Central Computer tells YOU whats wrong and you have to FIND out how to fix it. You print the necessary part, open up a panel and swap a part. Now the cost of the parts shouldn’t be a lot - the punishment is reduced performance of the dropship. If the parts printer should get a buff is up to the people who play CAS (not me!!!).

So, beyond the meat and potatoes, what does this actually do? What effect is it gonna have? It creates something for POs, DCCs and MTs to do, creating player interaction.

Parts can break anytime, imagine being CAS PO and tellung your MT Grease Monkey on the ship that you experienced several component breaks. Your boys need you for the FOB siege so this bird has to take off ASAP so you can only fix one system. Hydraulics system done for, engines overheating and the GPS system needs to be realigned. This adds a lot of player choices that have impacts. Tough choices.

Or imagine being the transport PO at the FOB siege and your shits all fucked up but thankfully you had the foresight to bring spare parts onboars. You’re frantically putting coolant in the engines, unfucking the hydraulics system and the radio antenna cracked from the hard landing due to the broken hydraulics system. Are you gonna be able to evac in time?

So some miscellaneous stuff, the Hangar would spawn in with tanks of Hydraulic/Coolant fluid, you CAN drink these but expect hellish toxin damage and organ failure. Not everyone would be able to perform maintenance on the DS, I’m thinking either locking it behind a special tool or a skill lock, thinking piloting skill but don’t know how MTs/CEs would do maintenance.

I know this is very ambitious and will need tuning and fleshing out and for a week expect some broken ass, barely flying dropships but this is adding awesome content to role that doesn’t have any and this paves the road for a larger scale shipside engineering update too.

Thanks for reading.


This might give Maintenance Techs something to do, could be a nice idea when properly implemented!


As a DCC main and knowing a bunch of PO mains this would be well liked it could give the MTs and DCCs something to do!

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Solid idea Bob. Would be interesting.

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The debuff for this shouldn’t just be longer, it will also require someone to manually pilot the dropship, so the auto pilot will be broken (not working) till it is fixed.

This is good.

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A basic tenant of quality game design is to not add-in busywork like this with solely negatives as a punishment for not acting upon it. The survival game equivalent would be a hunger, thirst, sleep, and temperature bars which exists solely to punish you for not topping them off constantly.

I think that in order for this potential feature to be received well, then you need to add benefits as well (you can go beyond 100% condition on weapons in Monster Hunter, being hungry is a debuff but being full is a healing/strength buff in Project Zomboid, etc).


  • Proper maintenance allows Almayer-to-Dropship radio communication, like a mini-telecomms tower that’s too minor to make much of a difference for the rest of the fight.
  • Acceptable maintenance is the current state.
  • Negligent Maintenance: Results in garbled messages from dropship intercomms and disables phones.


  • Proper Maintenance: Your time-to-depart after landing is reduced.
  • Acceptable Maintenance: Current implementation.
  • Negligent Maintenance: Your time-to-depart after landing is increased.
    Note: the existing engine upgrades already cover some of these niches. While it could be argued that this is redundant: I don’t think you should be required to install something at the beginning of every round that will be used by the same ships every round. If this implementation is added, just remove those modules.


  • Proper Maintenance: Doors take far longer to open, and can only be opened by the Queen.
  • Acceptable Maintenance: Current implementation.
  • Negligent Maintenance: Doors won’t lock, and require a crowbar/bayonet to open.


  • Proper Maintenance: Enables a charging port for power cells, smartgun batteries, stunbatons, and defibrillators. Increases fly-by duration.
  • Acceptable Maintenance: Current implementation.
  • Negligent Maintenance: Disables “non-essential” electronics such as MarineMeds, sentry turrets, lights, and the firemission console. Decreases fly-by duration.
    Note: the existing engine upgrades already cover some of these niches. While it could be argued that this is redundant: I don’t think you should be required to install something at the beginning of every round that will be used by the same ships every round. If this implementation is added, just remove those modules.

I have no idea how you’d implement this short of a tac map (might be nice for command?), or some kind of IO center (hard to implement, not a ton of space).

MOST IMPORTANTLY OF ALL: Set repairs to return the dropship to Acceptable Maintenance from Negligent Maintenance to Engineering 2: this is the same level as Dropship Crew Chiefs, Comtechs, Squad Leaders, IOs, and SOs. This insures there will almost always be someone around to make sure the whole marine team isn’t being debuffed because the PO can’t maintain their own ship. A lower level means almost any loser could maintain a state-of-the-art dropship, and higher could painfully impact low-pop rounds.

Set improvements of the components to Proper Maintenance to Engineering 3. This means that you need talented crew like Maintenance Technicians and Synthetics to increase the effectiveness of the dropship, and helps to reinforce their role within the battalion.

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I will +1 this post.

Geeves was working on a drop ship fuel system where the MTs had to figure out a chemical combination and if so performance was improved.

I think it might be somewhere on the PR lists it was never merged

I think this is pretty neat, I’m looking at some dropship changes and I think this could be a part of it

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