[UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.5.6 (07/05/12)

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[UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.5.6 (07/05/12)

Post by Capt. Murphy » Sun Apr 24, 2011 6:51 am

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Ships in these screenshots are from Griffs all in one.

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This screenshot provided by Makara - ships are core versions.

Download current version 1.5.6 from http://www.box.com/s/fqux5e4dpq3s5asp3euq
Escort Contracts version 1.5.6 (07/05/12)
By Capt Murphy 2011,2012
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 : Please visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/ for more info.
Requires Oolite 1.76

Overview: Allow players to enter into short-term escort contracts with NPC lone wolf traders.

Description:

The Independent Traders and Hauliers Association have reacted to demand from lone wolf NPC Traders and introduced a system to allow them to enter into short-term escort contracts with vetted and rated freelance escort pilots.

Players who wish want to access these contracts must purchase an I.T.H.A Independent Escort License available to players with a Clean legal status at systems with a Tech Level of 3 or above and not Anarchies, Feudal States or Multi-Governments.

Once purchased players whose legal rating is still Clean may be offered short term escort contracts on docking at a system’s main station. The chance of being offered contracts is based on the player’s reputation as an escort. The fees offered are also affected by the player’s reputation as an escort and government type of the target system. Target systems are always within 1 jump of the starting system. Reputation is increased when a contract is successfully fulfilled and reduced when a contract is failed.

Once a contract is agreed the player has 3 game hours to launch from the station or the contract is failed (be careful about buying equipment – it takes up time). The NPC trader (or 'mother') will be waiting in the station aegis and will prompt the player to approach as they prepare to jump to the target system. The player can follow them through their wormhole or alternatively jump themselves to the target system. Failure to arrive at the target system by the point the wormhole expires ends the contract.

Once in the target system the player’s task is to escort the mother to the system's main station. Mothers will issue various prompts to players in flight, will request assistance if attacked, and will assist the player if the player is attacked. The contract is fulfilled once the mother has entered the aegis of the target system's main station, unless there are hostile craft in the vicinity in which case the player must stand by to protect the mother until it has safely docked.

Game Balance and Playability:

In order to avoid these contracts being long and rather dull in between hostile encounters, this OXP gives the mother the ability to 'synchronise jump drives' with the player. The mother has been given scan_class CLASS_ROCK (but with custom scanner colours) so will not mass-lock the player. In flight if there is nothing else to mass-lock the player the mother will prompt the player to approach to between 500m - 2500m and to match heading. If the player does so the mother will synchronise jump drives with the player and both mother and player will travel on the mother’s heading at torus speeds, until the player or mother is mass-locked again.

If the player is mass-locked but with no hostile contacts in the vicinity the mother may after a short delay decide to try and use injectors to get out of the mass-locked situation so that the player and mother can take advantage of the mother’s synchronised jump drive capability. This feature will only operate if the player also has working injectors and at least 1 LY of fuel.

Mothers will normally be an Anaconda, Boa, Boa Cruiser or Python and all come equipped with ECM, injectors, and fore and aft beam lasers as standard.

The shipdata.plist is set up to 'like_ship' to the core versions of these ships (or a retextured version if the core versions have been replaced by a retexture OXP), and if installed any of the versions from retexture OXPs that add variants in addition to core ships. Currently supported are Griff's, DeepSpace, Shady Sungs, Smiv's and Neolite Core.

If you have a retexture pack installed that does not replace the core models and want to suppress usage of the core models in this OXP you can edit the shipdata.plist to reduce the roleweighting of the core ships. Instructions are included in the shipdata.plist as comments.

The shipdata.plist is also set up to use these OXP ships as potential mothers if installed:
From Neolite Companion : Monitor, Python Cruiser, Python ET Special;
From Old Ships 2010 : Monitor, Monitor2;
From Far Arm Ships : Tanker;
From Clippers: Python Clipper, Boa Clipper.
From Staer9's Shipset: Monitor, Python Cruiser, Python ET Special.

You can use these entries as a template to use ships from your favorite OXP. However be wary of doing this with any OXP ship that normally requires its own shipscript, or is too large to dock at a normal station as the results may be unpredictable.

If you have an Advanced Space Compass installed the Mother will be marked with an ‘M’ beacon code.

Changelog:

Version 0.9 (24/4/11) - Initial Release.

Version 0.9.1 (29/4/11)

Fixed a bug in detecting player kills (the mother should pay a bonus for hostile kills made during the contract - was broken in version 0.9).
Added code for mother to use injectors to try and escape from mass lock situations after a few minutes.
Made criteria for contract success arrival in target system's station aegis rather than mother safely docked to save player time.
Replaced shield enhancers with shield boosters as standard equipment for mothers as they were a little too uber.
Added code to stop the I.T.H.A. Independent Escort License being damaged in combat.
Added an additional world script which displays the players escort reputation on the manifest screen.

Version 0.9.2 (29/4/11)

Fixed a small bug in calculation and display of contract prices.

Version 1.0 (8/5/11)

Added a cap to escort reputation.
Removed shield boosters as standard equipment for mothers and gave them fore beam lasers instead of military lasers. Mothers now really do need your help to survive an encounter with multiple hostiles.
Many improvements to the AI for the mother using injectors feature.
Fixed a cosmetic bug in the mission screen timing.
Fixed a bug where the mother could still be found waiting to dock after the player had docked, met the mother’s pilot in the bar, got their reward and re-launched.
Improvements and bug fixes to the combat AI, mainly relating to mother - player communication.
Removed player auto targeting mother’s primary aggressor (potential for confusion if other auto target-locking OXP’s are installed).
Adjusted criteria for contract success. If no hostiles in vicinity the contract is fulfilled once the mother is in the station aegis. If there are hostiles in the vicinity when the mother arrives in the aegis the player must not dock until the mother is safely docked to fulfill the contract. The mother will explicitly tell the player this on arrival at the station aegis.
Added code so that if repeatedly attacked by the player, the mother will eventually ‘turn’ and attack the player. The contract is immediately failed at this point.
Added code so the timer that checks to see if the player has followed the mother through it’s wormhole kicks as the wormhole closes. Uses same calculation as oolite engine to work out wormhole expiry time depending on the mother ship mass.

Version 1.1 (15/6/11)

Various improvements to AI following tester reports of occasional anomalous docking and route finding behaviour.
Added a pilot and cargo to the mother (thanks to Eric Walch for the tip).
Added code to gradually reduce a positive or negative escort reputation over time.
Added code so that any fire from a players ‘Hired Guns’ from the OXP of the same same are treated as Friendly Fire.

Version 1.2 (13/7/11)

Fixed dockingAI that would not parse correctly on Mac systems.
Tweaked and tidied the synchronised jump code. Player must be between 500m-2500m and on approximately same heading as mother before synchronised jump will happen. The minimum distance has been introduced to avoid mother making course changes whilst hopping due to avoiding ‘collision’ with the player.
Added an additional check to avoid anomalous communication from the mother when docked.

Version 1.3 (7/8/11)

Added code to Mission Screen handling to allow access to Short Range Chart whilst perusing contracts.
Added check to avoid contract being offered to post-Nova system.

Version 1.3.1 (7/8/11)

Fixed missiontext.plist that would not parse correctly on Mac systems.

Version 1.4 (19/9/11)

Changed synchronised jump mechanism to use ship.velocity and a frame callback to simulate synchronised jump behaviour rather than a ‘teleport/hop’. Change prompted by reports of original method causing a crash to desktop on some systems (seemingly caused by changing the mother’s ship.position by script), and retained as the effect is more pleasing. Thanks to FleurdeMal for reporting the crash and testing the revised version.

If player leaves mission screen to access short range chart and does not return within a fairly short time period there is a chance that the contracts on offer will have changed.

Tweaked AI for initial hyperspace jump to reduce incidence of mother trying to jump when jumps are blocked by the station’s mass.

Version 1.4.1 (24/9/11)

Minor tweaks. Can now access both short range and long range charts and return to mission screens.

Tweaked the AI, so mother more likely to use injectors if mass-locked repeatedly by same NPC.

Version 1.4.2 (20/11/11)

Some tweaks to the mother ship-script to reduce processing overhead.
Fixed small bug where player was rewarded extra for a ‘hostile’ kill even if the kill was an asteroid or boulder.

Version 1.5 (28/1/12)

Made JS strict mode compatible.
Made Save Anywhere OXP compatible.
Reduced use of missionVariables.
Tweaked calculation of contract rewards - average is 25% lower than previous versions but with significant random variation.
Kills are only counted by the mother if the player is within 3 x her scanner range.
If mother is 'abandoned' by the player for any length of time there is a chance she will be ambushed by pirates - frequency is higher in more dangerous government types.
Added a little randomness to some of the comms messages from the mother.
Eliminated unneccesary and irritating repeat comms messages, particulary the 'Jump Drive Synchronised' message.
Added a background image to mission screens.
Made the code to remove mother ship from ooniverse on contract failure more robust.
Found and fixed a few potential bugs if the player does something 'weird' such as not dock to collect the reward at the end of a contract.

Version 1.5.1 (05/02/12)

Fixed small bug in display of reputation introduced in last release.
Reduced frequency of some other comms messages in response to user feedback.
Expanded shipdata.plist to use ship variants as mothers from the 5 main retexture shipsets if available, and several other OXP ships if available.

Version 1.5.2 (05/03/12)

Tweaked AI to stop mother injecting indefinately in fleeing from attack in starting system.
Reduced max speed of escort contracts variant of Boa Clipper.
Enabled entries for the addition version of Smiv's v4 shipset.

Version 1.5.3 (07/03/12)

Fixed small bug where player was rewarded extra for a ‘hostile’ kill even if the kill isCargo.

Version 1.5.4 (21/04/12)

Tweak to the chances of contracts being offered. Was in a range of 25% to 100% depending on escort reputation, now a range of 20% to 80%.
Set specific spawn position for mother of 19km directly behind main station to avoid issues with bigger stations (e.g the Torus) (thanks to cim for bug report and suggestion for appropriate fix).

Version 1.5.5 (05/05/12)

Added Staer9 shipset versions of the Monitor, Python Cruiser, & Python ET Special as potential mother variants if the OXP is installed.
Made the Escort License transferable equipment when buying a new ship.

Version 1.5.6 (07/05/12)

Mother spawn position set to sphere radius 4km centred on a spot 14km directly behind main station.
Mother will hold this position until player approaches and then start moving directly away from station/planet rather than towards witchpoint, whilst preparing to jump.
If mother's maxSpeed is greater than 95% of player.ship.maxSpeed she will limit her cruising speed and injector speed to 95% of equivalent player.ship.maxSpeeds (apart from in combat).
Fixed logic bug with behaviour controlling when to start/stop injecting. Starting was based on player's mass lock status, ending on the mothers. Ending now checks both.
Increased frequency of check to stop injecting to every second - previously every 3 seconds.
Thanks to Lone_wolf and cim for highlighting the issues leading to these tweaks.
Last edited by Capt. Murphy on Mon May 07, 2012 9:03 am, edited 29 times in total.
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Re: [Test Release] - Escort Contracts OXP - 0.9 (24/04/11)

Post by Zireael » Sun Apr 24, 2011 9:46 am

Brilliant idea, I'll test it when I have some time...

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Re: [Release] - Escort Contracts OXP - 0.9.1 (29/04/11)

Post by Capt. Murphy » Fri Apr 29, 2011 9:03 am

Thanks Zirael,

version 0.9.1 is up - a fair few tweaks made and it all seems to work quite nicely. Change log below. First post updated with full read me and download link. Feedback welcome.
Version 0.9.1 (29/4/11) -

Fixed a bug in detecting player kills (the mother should pay a bonus for hostile kills made during the contract - was broken in version 0.9).

Added code for mother to use injectors to try and escape from mass lock situations after a few minutes.

Made criteria for contract success arrival in target system's station aegis rather than mother safely docked to save player time.

Replaced the shield enhancers with shield boosters as standard equipment for mothers as mothers were a bit too tough and contracts too easy in 0.9.

Added code to stop the I.T.H.A. Independent Escort License being damaged in combat.

Added an additional world script to display the players escort reputation on the manifest screen.
Edit to add: Just noticed an annoying buglet with the calculation of the contract prices. Nothing major just looks ugly on the mission screens (you will be paid 850.0000000001 credits). Will fix and update tomorrow.
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Re: [Release] - Escort Contracts OXP - 0.9.2 (29/04/11)

Post by Capt. Murphy » Fri Apr 29, 2011 3:54 pm

Version 0.9.2 is up - first post updated again.

Fixed that small bug in the calculation of the contract prices. I thought I'd get it done following a small flurry of downloads this afternoon.

To anyone trying this out - I'm really interested in finding out how easy/difficult you think the contracts are - are the mother ships a bit too uber with the military laser and the shield booster (it's actually an energy increase)? What about the level of the rewards (noting that they increase as you successfully complete contracts)?
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Re: [Release] - Escort Contracts OXP - 0.9.2 (29/04/11)

Post by OneoftheLost » Sat Apr 30, 2011 3:04 am

Oh man! How did I miss this? I go away for a few short weeks....


I'll give this a good testing and get back to you on the difficulty. :)

*EDIT*

EXCELLENT! This mod adds another viable way to make a living along the space lanes. I like how your ships will use injectors when they feel they need to escape a mass-lock. I really like this OXP. It gives that feeling that other pilots are up there with you. I heartily reccomend this oxp to everyone. :)

Something to note, I'm using Galactic Navy as well, so Rogue Frigates are a real threat. I assume this goes for ALL oxp ships. I ran into a Rogue Frigate and it cleaned me and my charge's clock. I don't think difficulty will come into play, as if its too easy, everyone can just add a few OXP ships. (I had an imp courior give me a run for my money as well.) I think the Boa is a good choice, but if you could add say, shield boosters, I would do that.

Overall excellent OXp. Thanks for putting work into this!
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Re: [Release] - Escort Contracts OXP - 0.9.2 (29/04/11)

Post by Commander Wilmot » Fri May 06, 2011 10:39 pm

Could the escortee have extra fuel on heavy combat runs, like escort missions to Rediquat and other anarchies? Sort of like how a modern fighter refuels from special tanker planes, like the KC-135.

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Re: [Release] - Escort Contracts OXP - 0.9.2 (29/04/11)

Post by Capt. Murphy » Sat May 07, 2011 4:30 am

@Commander Wilmot

The mother already never runs out of fuel. However there is a time limit to each session of injectors in the current version.

However in the next release which is very nearly ready the injector AI is much improved so the overall time limit for each inject session is based on the type of ship the mother is in (takes into account their different speeds under injectors), the inject session will be cut short if the mother finds herself in clear space, and injectors won't be used if the player doesn't have working injectors and/or fuel.

@OneoftheLost

Sorry I missed your edit until someone else posted. Glad you are enjoying the OXP. The current version the mother's have shield boosters. Re the difficulty I still found the contracts a bit to easy - I've got Pirate Coves and Galactic Navy installed, but even so didn't once lose a mother when playing further with 0.9.2 (got killed myself a few times though... :evil: ). Next version mothers won't have any shield/energy enhancement and beam lasers only. In playtesting this I've found that contracts to more lawful planets were still fairly straightforward, but with missions to Anarchies or Feudal States I was losing the mother about 1 time out of every 4 and really had to be on the ball to take out ships attacking the mother first. This is me flying a well equipped cobra. This strikes me as about right for a failure rate. Players who haven't fully kitted out their ship should really struggle with contracts to the more dangerous planets.
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Re: [UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.0 (08/05/11

Post by Capt. Murphy » Sun May 08, 2011 8:37 am

Version 1.0 is released. First post updated with read me and download link.

I've play-tested this to death and am happy that this is a full release version and am not planning any further changes. However if there are any bugs found or doable suggestions for improvements I will of course update. All feedback is welcome but I'm going to be off-line in a few days until the end of the month so please don't be offended by lack of an immediate response.

Trunk users may need to upgrade to last night's revision 4544, as the previous one 4540 (and possible a couple prior to that) had introduced a bug in respawning NPC's when a player follows them through a wormhole.

Many changes and improvements with this release summarised below.
Added a cap to escort reputation.

Removed shield boosters as standard equipment for mothers and gave them fore beam lasers instead of military lasers. Mothers now really do need your help to survive an encounter with multiple hostiles.

Many improvements to the AI for the mother using injectors feature.

Fixed a cosmetic bug in the mission screen timing.

Fixed a bug where the mother could still be found waiting to dock after the player had docked, met the mother’s pilot in the bar, got their reward and re-launched.

Improvements and bug fixes to the combat AI, mainly relating to mother - player communication.

Removed player auto targeting mother’s primary aggressor (potential for confusion if other auto target-locking OXP’s are installed).

Adjusted criteria for contract success. If no hostiles in vicinity the contract is fulfilled once the mother is in the station aegis. If there are hostiles in the vicinity when the mother arrives in the aegis the player must not dock until the mother is safely docked to fulfill the contract. The mother will explicitly tell the player this on arrival at the station aegis.

Added code so that if repeatedly attacked by the player, the mother will eventually ‘turn’ and attack the player. The contract is immediately failed at this point.

Added code so the timer that checks to see if the player has followed the mother through it’s wormhole kicks as the wormhole closes. Uses same calculation as oolite engine to work out wormhole expiry time depending on the mother ship mass.
Last edited by Capt. Murphy on Sun May 08, 2011 2:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: [UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.0 (08/05/11

Post by Eric Walch » Sun May 08, 2011 1:31 pm

I just started with this oxp and found the first minor bug. I was in a multi-goverment when starting, but could not buy a license. According to the read-me it should be possible:
ReadMe wrote:Players who wish want to access these contracts must purchase an I.T.H.A Independent Escort License available to players with a Clean legal status at non Anarchy systems with a Tech Level of 3 or above.
Looking in the equipment definition it says: government > 2. That excludes Anarchies, feudal states and Multi-Governments.

I would say this is a good choice and you probably forgot to update the readMe?

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Re: [UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.0 (08/05/11

Post by Capt. Murphy » Sun May 08, 2011 2:08 pm

Eric Walch wrote:
I would say this is a good choice and you probably forgot to update the readMe?
Umm - that sounds like a good excuse so I'll go with it..... :oops:

It's one of those things - I installed the equipment on a generic tester save-game on the first release and forgot to double check that little detail when AI, wormhole expiry calculations etc were bending my head.

I'll edit the readMe and reupload - will be on the same link.
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Re: [Release] - Escort Contracts OXP - 0.9.2 (29/04/11)

Post by Commander Wilmot » Sun May 08, 2011 5:46 pm

Capt. Murphy wrote:@Commander Wilmot

The mother already never runs out of fuel. However there is a time limit to each session of injectors in the current version.

However in the next release which is very nearly ready the injector AI is much improved so the overall time limit for each inject session is based on the type of ship the mother is in (takes into account their different speeds under injectors), the inject session will be cut short if the mother finds herself in clear space, and injectors won't be used if the player doesn't have working injectors and/or fuel.
What I meant was when the player is doing high-risk contracts to dangerous systems, such as anarchies, could the mother ship refuel the player? This should probably only happened once per contract.

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Re: [UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.0 (08/05/11

Post by Capt. Murphy » Mon May 09, 2011 4:40 am

It would be possible to code that as a feature - but perhaps the mother reduces the eventual fee for contract success as a result.

The savvy player will be arriving in the target system with a full tank of fuel as they are already hitching a 'free' lift through the mother's wormhole. I've not come close to using a full 7ly of fuel during the course of the contract.
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Re: [UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.0 (08/05/11

Post by maik » Mon May 09, 2011 12:47 pm

Hi Capt Murphy,

I installed this OXP yesterday: nicely done, I had fun playing it!

The only problem, though very minor, is that after the mother tells me that it arrived safely in the station aegis it still tells me about using injectors to escape mass lock and about synchronizing jump drives. Once it actually took me further away from the station than we had already been after entering it's aegis.

Well done,
-Maik

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Re: [UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.0 (08/05/11

Post by Eric Walch » Mon May 09, 2011 1:20 pm

maik wrote:The only problem, though very minor, is that after the mother tells me that it arrived safely in the station aegis it still tells me about using injectors to escape mass lock and about synchronizing jump drives. Once it actually took me further away from the station than we had already been after entering it's aegis.
Yes, I noticed the same after ignoring his command to dock now. At the end I did dock and at the same moment the mother was removed correctly from the universe. (I had the mother in the target inspector to see what would happen after docking).

Although the OXP contains a special docking AI for the mother, it is not always using it. :?

Anyhow, great job and escorting is not as slow as the old OO-haul.oxp. And also for me was fuel no problem as you start with a full tank.

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Re: [UPDATED RELEASE] - Escort Contracts OXP - 1.0 (08/05/11

Post by OneoftheLost » Mon May 09, 2011 5:56 pm

Excellent! Ill give this new version a try. I think I found a rather minor bug in the last version.

I use IronHide as well as Escort, and in Ironhide you can ask for a quote of armor repairs from the equipment screen. When doing this, I sometimes have the Escort contract screen pop up. Has this been fixed in the latest version? or is it simply a minor incompatibility?
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