Interacting with the Environment

Vehicles can interact with their surroundings in ways similar to humans.  

Perceiving their Environment

Like us, vehicles see, hear, and smell the world around them.   They possess optics in several places on their hulls and turrets, which can be used independently to see. Thus, they usually have a view of everything around them, even though that view is greatly limited by the quality of their optical equipment and the fact that usually optics are just small slits to protect them from damage. They also have their gun sights, which allow them to see things farther away than their optics can see.   SPGs have their special sights, the Artillery Sights, which enhance their ability to perceive the world around them.   Most vehicles aren't equipped with sufficient nightvision, which makes them see as poorly as humans do at night. They can use their headlights, and artillery sights don't require light, but true nightvision is reserved to very few. Therefore, battles at night are very unusual.  

Manipulating Objects

Every vehicle possesses something that could be best described as 'tiny robot arms'. They use them to pick up and move things of up to medium weight. For example, they could use them to lift a tractor tyre, but not another vehicle.
TANK ARMS
Therefore, the vehicles have a certain range of autonomy:
Reloading - All fighting vehicles have an automatic loading mechanism. Depending on how skilled they are at operating it, they may need a longer or shorter time to reload, within the boundaries of their average reload time. Ammunition is resupplied through ammo hatches.
Refueling - Fuel is consumed by simply grabbing a can and pouring it into the vehicle's intake.   Many other tasks can't be fulfilled by regular vehicles however, which is why tank recovery vehicles exist. They perform upgrades and maintenance, and various other things that require either fine motor skills or special equipment like cranes.  

Interacting with Each Other

In everyday and casual contexts, vehicles simply talk to each other by using their 'voice boxes' - a device seperate from their radios that is used to synthesize speech. This is also how they communicated with humans. Their 'standard' voices are randomly distinct from each other to distinguish individuals more easily, but can be altered deliberately.   There is also the option to communicate nonverbally through their radios. For more information on radio communication, see this article.

Environmental Hazards
The main natural hazards for vehicles are extreme weather conditions. Trivial causes of death caused by their environment are freezing, drowning, falling off cliffs, getting bogged down in bad terrain, and so on. Going too close to extremely radiated areas can also be harmful to their technical components.


Cover image: by S. Ignatiev

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