Capital Ships, Shields, and How Hard is "Hardcore"?
If you take on the role of a strike-fighter pilot your main targets will be "capital" ships and other high value military items. These ships can carry a variety of turreted weapons, from short-range Repeaters to medium-range missiles. The larger ones also may have long-range beam weapons (beam weapons haven't been fully coded yet). You'll need to know how to defend against each to complete your assigned task.
A fighter's shields are very good at protecting against short-range energy-based weapons, but offer little protection against blast damage from, say, missiles. Your armor and counter-measures will help with these, but there's only so much your armor can take, and there are weak points you need to be aware of. The most devastating to your ship though are beam weapons. Their prolonged attack can easily overpower a charged shield and eat through almost all types of armor, so you'll need to be careful not to stray into the path of one of these.
So, while you'll have protection, you'll need to know what you're going up against before the mission to know which defensive systems to have installed, and the best way to attack the target...
Flight sims are generally classed into two categories--"Survey" and "Hardcore." Survey sims typically represent a wide variety of planes with commonly modeled systems so you can easily jump from one plane to another. Hardcore sims generally model one or two planes in extreme detail (or add more over time, such as the DCS series) and are often as complicated in function as the real thing.
Rogue System's aim is to be a "Hardcore" sim in that each ship system is simulated in great detail. However, via the ship's computer (the SOI) I can allow options to offload lower level system control and management to it. This effectively changes the sim from "Hardcore" to "Survey." So, Rogue System's difficulty can be tailored to each player's taste. If you want total control, you can have it. If you want something in between, or just want to worry about flying, targeting and shooting, you can do that, too.
The idea is not to change the simulation, only how much the player is responsible for, to cater to varying tastes.
(NOTE: I re-posted this update using proper terminology after realizing an error I made this morning while typing the original, thus reminding me of a valuable lesson--fully wake up in the morning before trying to do an update :) )