Tomonaga (
Fri, 17 Mar 2000 15:09:18 +1300

Paul Fields wrote:

> Few questions for the group, um... looking at all the lineart
> I have, the primary differences between Fed and Zeon MS
> cockpits are that Zeons use a Joystick on a sliding throttle
> like rail on each side of the pilots chair to control the left &
> right sides of the machine.

The 0079 Zeon MS actually had standardised controls that sort of
resembles that of large aircraft but had independent control sticks(not
joystick) for handles. (For some reason the Dom had Federation type
sliding controls)

0080, 0083, 08th, Zeon MS all seem to use the 'joysticks' mounted on the
sides of the seats except the Zugock E which used sliding controls.

> Federation MS seem to use a throttle like rail on each side to
> control power, and thrust, but just have handles on each of
> these sides, so they can't fine tune their movements. I'm in
> a quandry here, I'd like to assume that all you do is shove the
> power level up on the side you attack with, and the computer
> executes a macro, but if you turn the computer off Ala South
> Burning in 0083 how do you work the handles, they don't
> have any control other than forward, back, and use the hand's
> weapon (fire button) very limited if you ask me.
> Both sides use foot pedals, lets move on...

I don't think the Federation sliding controls directly control the power
output as you have described. It's hard to tell from watching the anime,
what these things do but the foot pedals do seem to control the thrusters

It's important to keep in mind that it's one thing to build these things
but it's a completely different story to give these things the full
freedom of movement that a human being has. So realistically, a MS will
have very limited set of movements compared to a human being although
it's not always obvious from the anime.

Since the basic controls of a tank is only two levers that go back and
forwards, I suppose a MS can be controlled in a similar way. i.e. one
stick forward will turn the MS, both sticks forward will make the MS move
forward, both sticks back moves the MS back, use both foot pedals for
jumping straight up, one for jumping sideways etc.. There will have to be
some system in place that distinguishes the environment. i.e on the
ground MS walks, in sky/space thrusters only etc.. I would imagine the
use of weapons eg raising a beam rifle to firing position, drawing the
beam sabre are all button activated as well as other basic movements such
as lying down, getting up etc...

The differences in controls between Zeon and Federation MS are obviously
due to the difference in the control system used. It's kind of like the
difference between a manual (stick-shift) transmission and an automatic
transmission in a car.. The Federation MS has a lot more computer
assistance than the Zeon MS and is easier to pilot. i.e. the Federation
MS computer had a lot more pre-programmed movements which could be
performed at a touch of a button whereas the Zeon pilot had to manually
perform the movement.

In regards to South Burning, I don't recall the situation very well but
he probably switched off the 'safety' computer that would have prevented
him from performing movements considered too risky/dangerous to the MS
and/or the pilot. I doubt he switched off all the computer control of the
MS since all of the controls must be fly-by-wire.


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