The intel drone (I imagine we could have a poll to discuss names) is a cute little piece of technology used by the Intel Officers to gather information in the AO. It is a tiny tracked vehicle with a few tools That I will discuss the functionality of.
Before going into that, I’d like to add something that would go along with them
Drone Bay: Two white tubes extending from the ceiling that have a ramp leading into an open space near the bottom, which can fit the drones, either by putting them inside or driving them inside, which will slowly repair and recharge them.
Drone Pad: A supply pad like the ones in req that can be used to launch the drone on a set of coordinates, or on a Intel Officer’s signal flare, useful for delivering it into the field.
As for the Drone(s) itself, there would be two of them, one blue and one green, only one can be active and controllable at a time, and if it is destroyed in the field it must be manually recovered and lifted with two hands, then brought back for repair and recharge, This would incenvize keeping one on the almayer for quick response deployment or replacement. Drones are destroyed easily via slashing, gunfire, explosions, or acid, and they are damaged by walking over acid puddles. Driving over weeds will get the drone stuck similar to spider webs in vanilla ss13, requiring a rng chance to escape, and every failed attempt will take a large chunk of battery charge.
Drones come with a small terrain tool, that can be used to clear away normal weeds (no hive weeds, resin nodes, or weed addons) and the terrain tool itself can be used to smash flipped tables and wooden barricades, but will do no damage to real barricades or living things. The Remote Interface Tool will allow drones to access certain electronic devices, like APCs and Comms towers, to see their status and possibly change their settings remotely. Jumpjets in the bottom of the craft allow it to traverse ledges up and down automatically, and it has a small camera that can be used to take and store photos. The drone will have a secondary deployment function outlined next.
Deploying the drone will force it to become stationary similarly to resting, while active the drone’s vision will extend to approximately 3 screens wide but will become more narrow, and can cycle a few vision modes. NVG to see in low light conditions, Thermal (will need to be added? tweaked from xenovision?) can see living things hidden under small objects and cover like curtains or resin holes, You have the choice of med/diagnostic/squad hud, and you can cycle to a special detector, a Sonar Detector.
The Sonar Detector while active will ping a large area around itself, and any living non IFF signatures (so mostly xenos, animals, and people without IDs on) will be displayed on the CIC’s Map Table. For balancing reasons this sonar detector would need to be a small distance away from the LZ, and will increase battery consumption while active. Any players hit by a sonar ping will have a unique chat message, and the sonar itself should be very loud to require thoughtful placement.
Drones could also optionally have a passive data detector mode that can be kept on in mobile mode, but I don’t think it would be wise to let them store any Intel so that IOs have to actually stick their neck out to go capitalize on whatever the drone finds.
Additionally, the drone could be fultonable when it is no longer needed, and a new shipside intel department role like drone operator or Chief IO could be added to manage it since Ios tend to be busy. More drones might be orderable in tier 2/3 intel, and it should probably have a tactical map icon of its own.
Please tell me what you think of this idea, and if possible a name for one or both, I’m thinking themed around famous scouts or famous robots, and should match the culture of the IOs