The Current state of Space games in general

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Amah
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Re: The Current state of Space games in general

Post by Amah »

* a waypoint to a DS rock hermit for smuggling or an asteroid field?
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Re: The Current state of Space games in general

Post by Disembodied »

Amah wrote:* a waypoint to a DS rock hermit for smuggling or an asteroid field?
Yes, another good idea! Being able to build up a reservoir of that sort of local knowledge would also help the player create a "home system" (or at least a "home area").

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Re: The Current state of Space games in general

Post by Astrobe »

Disembodied wrote:
Norby wrote:Yes, gettig news from NPCs is a good idea, give a reason to stay on the space lanes.
That's an excellent point ... well worth thinking about some more! What sort of information could players expect to get? Trading contracts, news on (short-lived) price fluctuations (a glut in Radioactives on such-and-such a planet, or a high demand for Liquor and Wines on another) ... maybe information about pirate activity in the system/local systems - specific ships to watch out for? There would need to be some way to make this advantageous to know, though - perhaps via Astrobe's idea for a "periscope"/long-range scanner? As well as letting traders try to avoid particular pirate hunting-grounds, it would be useful for bounty hunters pursuing named targets, if we could get even a few "persistent NPCs".
I don't like scanner range extensions cause it feels like cheating but... One could share scanners with allies and get an extended range (justification: synchronising scanners allow each scanners to focus their power on a narrower sector, hence the extra range). It would be a good reason to hug convoys for a while, or even "convoy-hop". This could be annoying if pirates can do the same, so the equipment should be restricted to heavies in leader role and it would require a certain number of ships to work (maybe 4-6). So that would be actually to pieces of equipment: a "master" for heavies, and a "client" for escorts.

Trading contracts I thought of that one, but to be realistic it should be limited to "data" types of contracts - it can't be physical goods because you would have to eject them and they would have to scoop it (with all the trust and payment problems it implies). Furthermore, if it's transmittable data, what prevents the carriers to just transmit it to the station on arrival? I still like the idea, though, because currently all kind of contracts are only available at the main station. It needs some more thoughts to be believable.

Full market data of a nearby system would be incredibly valuable, perhaps too valuable - a difference of 10Cr times your cargo capacity can make a huge difference. Maybe the NPC could choose to not share its data when it sees those opportunities. Or it can be used as value appraisal for those data.

NPCs could also share waypoints that mark where they've been attacked or damaged, or where they had to release cargo in order to escape. That can be used offensively and defensively.

Currently all communications between NPCs are in "clear text", and one might wonder why they don't use an encrypted channel... If they would, then the players could run some sort of decryption program so they can eavesdrop them and get those precious information.

It looks like the thread has turned into "the state of Oolite"... Sorry, pagroove!

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Re: The Current state of Space games in general

Post by Anonymissimus »

Astrobe wrote:It looks like the thread has turned into "the state of Oolite"... Sorry, pagroove!
Also, a space game in general does absolutely not need to be a "you are sitting in your ship and are flying within space" - game, despite this being the only space games people around here seem to know. For instance, freeorion is undoubtedly a space game and successful open source. It's turn based strategy and has much less in common with oolite than with e.g. civilization-themed games (Sid Meiers' Civilization, its clones and similar).
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Re: The Current state of Space games in general

Post by Disembodied »

Astrobe wrote:I don't like scanner range extensions cause it feels like cheating but... One could share scanners with allies and get an extended range (justification: synchronising scanners allow each scanners to focus their power on a narrower sector, hence the extra range).
Or - if the player has advance information about a specific ship, with details of its transponder code/engine signature/insert handwave here - then that ship could be boxed and marked on-screen well beyond the scanner range, allowing the player to avoid it (or move to intercept it).
Astrobe wrote:Trading contracts I thought of that one, but to be realistic it should be limited to "data" types of contracts - it can't be physical goods because you would have to eject them and they would have to scoop it (with all the trust and payment problems it implies). Furthermore, if it's transmittable data, what prevents the carriers to just transmit it to the station on arrival? I still like the idea, though, because currently all kind of contracts are only available at the main station. It needs some more thoughts to be believable.
The trade could be in the actual cargo contract - i.e. "When I reach the station, I'm supposed to collect a shipment of X to take to Y, but I can't do it - I'll pay you Z Cr if you take on the job (and the reputation benefits/penalties)". Or, if you want to actually transfer goods, the deal could be an arrangement to meet later, in the station, where the goods can be transferred and payments made. There would need to be a "Wait until Ship So-and-So docks" option in the station, of course.

All that said, this would be a good argument for making loading and unloading cargo take game time, like fitting equipment and making repairs. This could also add a feature to ship type, where some ships can be loaded quickly (2 minutes per TC, say) and others take longer (10 minutes per TC, maybe). This would provide a more natural way for ships you meet on the lanes to have time to dock before the player is ready to leave again. It would obviously affect the timing of cargo and parcel runs, but those could be tweaked - and it would add to the strategies required to be a successful courier/transporter. Plus, again, there could be more equipment - Improved Loading Decks or something - that would speed up loading and unloading. And, further, it would also help make big ships feel and operate differently from small ships: an Adder can be in and out in a few minutes, if necessary, but a fully laden Python will have to take its time ...
Astrobe wrote:Full market data of a nearby system would be incredibly valuable, perhaps too valuable - a difference of 10Cr times your cargo capacity can make a huge difference. Maybe the NPC could choose to not share its data when it sees those opportunities. Or it can be used as value appraisal for those data.
Yes - I was thinking more along the lines of "I hear there's a shortage of Machinery on X", or "Rumour has it they're practically giving away Furs on Y": short-term bonus opportunities that may or may not last long enough for the player to take advantage of them.

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Re: The Current state of Space games in general

Post by Amah »

* What about wandering escorts offering their services to player at witchpoint for safe passage... From honest john to "nice ship you have here, what a pity if it get's damaged..." butch.
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