Status Quo Q-bomb OXP

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Revision as of 16:58, 19 November 2020 by Cholmondely (talk | contribs) (Overview: added Status Quo quote; tweaks)

This OXP lets Q-bombs behave as described in the Status Quo novella by Drew Wagar: close to a sun, planet or moon they won't explode.


'Stand by,' Rebecca said, placing her hand on the throttle controls. 'Hold it steady... hold it...'

The SuperCobra vibrated. The engines weren’t designed to operate against a gravity field; they didn’t like it. They had a nasty habit of pushing against the ship when under gravimetric strain like this. It wasn’t the atmosphere or surface that killed you on a close approach, it was hull breaking apart from the strain of the engines fighting themselves. She slammed the throttles closed. 'Now!' Jim hit the firing circuit. With a hiss and a mechanical clunk the mine deployed. Rebecca pushed the throttles forward and pulled the SuperCobra into a reluctant climb.

The President saw the tactical display update. 'Get them out of there! That is a gravimetric mine!' The Admiral turned and shouted orders. 'Abort pursuit! Clear the area! I repeat, Abort pursuit! The Viper pilots were well trained. They immediately split, turned and ran, streaking back into formation as they fled from the moon. Behind them the Ospreys and Hawks veered around randomly, confused by the sudden change in direction. They had also spotted the mine, but had no intelligence as to what it was. The apparent panic run of the Vipers convinced them that it was no good thing, and they turned and fled too. Jim counted down the time in his head. Five seconds. The SuperCobra had steadied out as it retreated from the moon. He flipped on the rear view display. He couldn’t see the mine, as it was too small, but it was marked with a flashing dot on the scanner, in a low, high-speed orbit a scant few kilometres above the surface. More seconds passed; one, two, five, ten. Nothing. 'Where the frag is the big bang?' Rebecca demanded, sounding panicky. Jim was speechless. He checked the launch criteria; everything was as expected. The scanner was showing strong gravimetric emissions, the signature of the priming sequence. The mine should have gone off, so why the prak hadn’t it? Was it faulty? Had the cooling been necessary after all? Had he overlooked something? He thought through it quickly, his brain racing. Temperature, Quirium density, launch parameters, distance verification, cascade balance. It was all correct, he’d double checked it, triple checked it all! Why hadn’t the mine worked? It was a pretty simple piece of machinery, all things considered. It couldn’t be a simple mechanical failure, surely?

Rebecca could see the Vipers were turning, realising the mine hadn’t detonated.

Q-bombs which, on reaching the end of their countdown, are closer to the surface of any celestial body (planet, moon etc) than one third of its radius will not explode. They will just sit there. They can then be scooped and re-loaded onto a free berth again!

Minimum requirements

Status_Quo_Q-bomb.oxp requires at least Oolite 1.72.


Status_Quo_Q-bomb 1.3 is available for download via


Move or copy the file Status_Quo_Q-bomb.oxp from the main folder to the AddOns folder inside the Oolite main folder. Restart Oolite.