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    Discuss with the Devs July 18 2019 ([SIS]-Shortform)

    Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Tsnonak, Jul 19, 2019.

    1. Tsnonak

      Tsnonak Let's_Kautsch!

      Dec 14, 2014
      I just wanted to make the most valuable Content from the discussion available for quick reference as well as to the rest of the community, (not in Discord).

      #I have done some extreme editing...
      It is concentrated around Schema's answers and planned development progress.
      I have also edited other comments for ease of reading.
      Feel free to add something you felt was important, (and/or) I missed below!
      Feel free to share your thoughts and/or concerns about where StarMade is going!

      #Official Discussion:

      July 18, ~6pm Eastern Time, the Starmade Discord will be hosting a "Discuss with the Devs" session. All are welcome to participate! We will be discussing development progress, the pitfalls we've stepped into, and the ideas we have as well as your concerns. If enough people participate and call for more, we'll be repeating this in the future, to help you, our supporters, get a closer look into what we've been working on! ~The Schine Team

      schemaYesterday at 23:57

      Stairs will come probably as LOD blocks. Multi block LOD will also be a thing.
      * LOD (and block design system in general) system is being overhauled to a point where everything is more or less automated so that bugs are minimized. Also means that it will be a lot easier for players to add their own blocks
      * Desynch seems to affect a lot of astronaut movement and some ship. There is probably one central issue causing this, so fixing that will be a focus either in universe update or in beta after.
      * RTS stuff will be improved, but will not go too overboard. While you can manage individual fleets, the main game mechanics of the universe update itself will go more in the direction of grand strategy, but also requiring personal involvment at points.

      The basic idea of a single player/coop or even general game would be to "take over the universe".
      Gameplay would be in a way split into multiple phases depending on the player's progression.
      Basically it will be a variation on "survival".
      You do start out with very few resources, so it can only be considered "survival" in the first few phases.
      After that, the player can use their accumulated assets to replace the survival work (being able to use fleets to mine, and getting passive resources).
      The galaxy will be flattened.
      It will still all be fully 3 dimensional, but the "point of interest" in the universe will somewhat on the same plane (think of a stellaris galaxy map somewhat).
      The galaxy will be divided up into regions with different types.
      Stars, nebula, black hole, empty, gas giants etc would be the main feature and several other things in the locale like planets moons, asteroid fields etc.
      Everything will be fairly distinct, so there is a clear structure to things you can see in a map overview kinda like a fallout 3 map (though randomized).
      Distances and space will be plenty, but the points of interest where players would be gathering around and fighting over would be limited.
      Regions also include environment effects and different resource sets.
      Some are inhabitable.
      Sectors would be hidden and regions would have a somewhat organic shape (not a square or rectangle).
      Region borders are fixed at universe creation, basically to make it possible to have a clear top down view of the whole galaxy.
      Things might still be on a different y plane, however stuff will not be layered on top of each other.
      Yes moons would be a thing, possibly rings, but depends on how viable it is.
      Basically players will gain territory and establish their presence.
      This would all be done with a new resource: "population".
      Population itslf is rather abstract and can be used in several ways.
      It can be obtained from a central point (probably traiding guilt) in small quantities.
      They can be frozen, stored and transported. They can also be deployed on stations/planets.
      The player will have to designate living areas, and possibly other areas (with restrictions, e.g. must be at least 2 blocks high).
      Based on those areas a station can fit a number of population.
      An AI system would visualize them (spawning people walking around in those areas).
      They would also like NPCs possibly spawn outposts and fly around with ships (same system could be used for player ship crews, too).
      For the sake of simplicity, players can build one "main" station per system, and as many other side ones, that possibly act as support.
      They would essentially power your passive income, so you would go from manual mining -> fleet mining -> passive mining, essentially.
      Faction points would probably interact, but still be used for PvP, per region that would be*.

      IthirahadToday at 00:06
      >players can build one "main" station per system, and as many other side ones, that possibly act as support.
      So, faction wars will revolve around destroying these support stations and then finally contesting the main one?

      schemaToday at 00:06
      Basically yes, either that or, putting your own population in the region, without fighting.
      What im tending to right now would be probably a hope station protection for the main station which would go away when several blows were dealt to other assets in that region
      Fighting over a region would be involving population, too.
      There would be a mechanic to make it hard to attack main stations (possibly having to take out other points too), but there would also be a mechanic to "peacefully" take control by farrying your own population into the region (only possibly over time, not at once).
      A region would also have different features from pirate threat to NPC presence to alien life.
      Some planets might be populated by native people and the player could either convert them to their own people, or exterminate them.
      Depending on population, there could be several things improving station defence, mainly spawning military coming to aid.
      Also some special items could be used for stations, but more on that later

      This will be all in the universe update, it is in fact the very core of it.
      I would say NPCs are part of the core since its essential to population.
      I dont want it to be purely abstract since its so essential to gameplay now.

      Populaition on ships could definitely be for improving that ship, but im not yet too sure of those specifics since it would affect balance.
      You will be able to do both, one actively and one passively.
      You would put population into defense and that would make them spawn ships.

      This system is built to last a few weeks up to a certain point until the endgame is reached.
      There would be several options for the super late game like apocalyptic threats attacking,
      I'm leaning towards resets with a global leader boards and players of course keeping their blueprints and maybe gaining items/blue print slots for doing the best in a galaxy lifetime.
      Of course you're also free to play endlessly in the same universe without any reset, but for me the build up from nothing to empire is what I like to play most.

      I'm aiming for a rough dev build at the end of the year, but it will essentially be a different game.

      In the early stages the player would have a lot of involvement in all the dirty work, and while not necessary a player can keep doing it at any point in the game.
      Later stages involve a lot of decision making and resource management.
      However, there are several ways to play this.
      You could also go full military with a lot less management and just take over by force.
      The end goal would be to gradually take over bigger and stronger regions as you expand your own territory.

      Planets will be viable for reasources and population. Depending on the planet they would be incredible for population generation.
      They will also be the only source of some resources.

      IthirahadToday at 00:17
      In several previous updates (NPC update, etc.).
      Lots of things were promised that would have made the updates a lot more worthwhile for players, that we still don't have. NPC update was supposed to have some sort of "war score" system if memory serves. The original weapons update was supposed to have improved weapon effects through the particle system, mine layers and an entire other layer of combos. The fleet update was supposed to come with more formation stuff soon after if not with the initial patch, et cetera.

      What happened in those updates, and how do we know that isn't happening again?

      schemaToday at 00:18
      All those things were planned, and a lot of it still is, but it's just very hard to get cohesion on it.
      Graphics updates are still planned, audio system is currently in the works.

      No plans for a lot of personal gear atm, but may come after universe update.
      Progression would be in a form of aquirering special items that can be applied to ships and stations
      (they would have some kind of reassurrance to not lose them.
      Basically you would put an item in your ship, but you would get it back if the ship gets destroyed/lost).
      Items could be aquired by going beyond the galaxy border into the void.
      The farther you go the more dangerous but the more valuable the loot might be.
      There might also be events spawning in the void for those items.
      Some items would also require you to reach a certain milestone in terms of controlling the galaxy.
      For a faction these requirements would count for every member, but you would still have to do some kind of mission/raid in the void to get the item.

      Mining will be changes in that more options for mining would be added.
      There would be mining that involved building collection facilities on planets.
      There would also be a more active form of mining which would involve building a ship with collectors and flying through certain areas of the galaxy.

      In the universe update, there will be an invading force other than other NPC faction.
      This force comes from outside the known universe.
      You will also be able to go into their space to complete hard survival tasks to get certain items.
      Items could go from resource bonuses for stations/mining to ship upgrades (e.g. extra reactor capacity)

      Most galaxy AI will be peaceful as long as you dont attack them.
      Agressive AI will come from outside, which makes it a lot easier to handle
      Mods would have full control over API and would be allowed to mod it as they se fit.
      LUA is already part of the engine in a way and could be one of the options for modding.
      LUA will likely be used for AI/NPC behaviors.
      Mods could be either used as an extension to the universe (adding events etc) or fully transform the game as see fit.

      I think the most dead ends in programming happened in graphics optimizations and chunk/bandwidth management.
      For example I did whole algorithms like compressed octrees to realize that regular compression is just as small, if not smaller.
      The whole cubatom system was kind of a bust (if anyone remembers that).

      Advertisement will start with the universe update as soon as it's in a stable state,
      (playable in the sense of not too many bugs to not scare people away).

      Fleet mechanic will be improved. I can't say yet how exactly it will work, but there are a lot of issues i like to straighten out.

      Changes along the universe update will likely be in their own updates.
      Being able to skip the "brush up and combine with current game" step saves a lot of time.
      That can be then combined into one step.

      Profitability of StarMade: the game will still be finished under any circumstance.
      In worst case the only thing that would change is that it would take longer because more time would have to be dedicated to side projects to provide funds.
      However, starmade will not be abandoned.

      The plan is to work with quickfire for a new vanilla balance
      I think worrying too much about small things in balance and preventing abuse impeded progress the most.
      That's why the rule system now exists.

      Chairs are planned, and with that sharing control on the ship.

      questions about bugs:
      Genrally I try to fix all bugs, but some of them are incredibly hard to pinpoint due to them being very hard to reproduce, (like that shield bug).
      I always welcome any information or setup that can reproduce a bug, because from there it's definitely fixable.

      I'm not too sure about fauna yet, it would be nice to have, but probably not too much of a fokus.
      However alien species that would essentially be somewhat animals is possible.
      Space whale and other things would be a region thing, which you might have to deal with first if you want to populate the region.

      Some regions might be toxic, so you couldnt survive there without special equipment.
      The earned items would be possible to put into a ship either as a block or as an item for slots.

      No plans for fuel atm, however I could make a system so fuel would be moddable.

      With decorations/LOD being revamped adding more and fixing issues will be much easier

      AI will likely start in control of farther regions with different strength tiers.

      RE Community Servers:
      There are no plans for such a thing, other than the existing test servers.
      However, that could certainly change based on community interest and how the game develops.

      Balance is going to be overhauled working with quickfire

      Ingame assets will definitely be community driven,
      especially replacing the default ships/stations with up to date blueprints.

      Alterintel Today at 00:32
      schema what is your idea of a big ship? a size you would like to discourage to prevent lag and other server resource issues?

      schemaToday at 00:34
      Alterintel, it really depends on the balance. I think like ~1km lenth would be a very big class, but I dont mind bigger.
      Ideally the balance will reflect big ships not being too big to impact server performance.
      I'll also do my best to optimize.

      Comr4deToday at 00:34
      Is there any chance momentum effects (stop push pull) will be re-added to the game?
      Being able to tackle faster enemy ships in combat is useful and the range of the tractor beam precludes that possibility.

      schemaToday at 00:34
      It's possible to re-add these effects, yeah.
      Yes, I kind of want a combat system that would enable tractor on piloted ships,
      possibly some kind of disable on ships possibly, but of course that is all affecting balance so im being careful with it.
      I want a good balance first with the help of quickfire, and then possibly work with them to add more elements to it.

      IthirahadToday at 00:40
      Oh right, that reminds me. Will there be an extensive mapmaker/admin toolset for defining custom Regions and stuff?
      Some kind of visual system built on top of the map display?
      ...So, Regions can't be manipulated in an existing map?

      schemaToday at 00:41
      I think, the map will be generated from script (and that script would be randomily generated).
      So you could chose to make your own script and/or build an editor for that on top of it
      Not sure how much they could be modified after creating, might be hard,
      but you could make a map beforehand

      A lot of these would be extra add ons after the universe update likely.
      Once the base game and gameplay loop is finally done, putting in extra goodies will be a breeze.

      Thadius FaranToday at 00:48
      Catalog folders when?

      schemaToday at 00:48
      I can make catalog folders, yeah

      Wafflecopter2000Today at 00:48
      How will gas giants actually work?

      schemaToday at 00:49
      They will likely be for resources.
      Basically there will be regions with heavy fog/nebular, gas giants would be a step further.
      You could fly into them and you would have to setup collectors on your ship to catch particles (blocks freely flying around).
      You wouldnt be able to survive in a gas giant for too long depending on your ship.
      For planets you would essentially have to build giant structures,
      probably dishes that would collect fluid passively, or will mostly be asteroid/mining.

      Some planets will have atmosphere that can sustain population really well.
      Basically a growth factor superior to what you can get on stations.
      Population will likely build stations, im not too sure on what they would do on planets but they would maybe put down houses.
      Planets will be fairly round, as much as they can be without messing with other stuff too much.

      There will be void enemies, Think Reavers from firefly kind of for the void.
      The nice thing about that is that they can be as big as tehy have to be threat wise without having to give them territory, because all of the void is their territory.
      Events will involve stations spawning and attacking with large force.

      Fleets will get jump capability, yea.

      You cannot conquer the void, you can eliminate sources of threats in the void, although there will always be a rest risk, but your population should be able to take care of it eventually.

      By "flat" imagine the flatness of a stellaris map.
      You can still go up/down as you like, but there is mostly void.
      Also: if you are in the void at any time, you will become a target.
      The longer you stay the more likely and the more harsh you will be attacked.

      IthirahadToday at 01:07
      So the galaxy will effectively be a single star deep?
      I mean, I guess that's OK for gameplay reasons, but it feels like a downgrade.
      Stellaris stars have vertical offset, but it's more or less one star in depth at any given location.
      In SM with first-person and everything that might feel a bit... lame?

      schemaToday at 01:08
      Regions would not overlap vertically.
      I know what you mean Ith, but I'll take better gameplay over looks any day.

      OccarinaToday at 01:08
      So basically everytime we go somewhere we're not suppose to we'll have x amount of time to get back into zone before we die?

      schemaToday at 01:09
      You will not die automatically.
      The stronger you get the longer you can survive and you have to survive longer for better loot out there.
      There will be NPC factions yes, and traditional pirates that are nested in regions as well as void enemies.
      There will be one main galaxy.
      There might be others out there but they would not be of any inherent importance, maybe for an extension of gameplay someday.
      Mostly I like to overcome the weakness of procedural generation, which is "big but all is the same".

      schemaToday at 01:14
      Thank you all for coming.
      There will be a next time.

      If you want an overview on the universe stuff. Put in #UNIVERSE in the search bar, all relevant posts are marked with that.
      #1 Tsnonak, Jul 19, 2019
      Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
      • Like Like x 10
    2. DukeofRealms

      DukeofRealms Count Duku

      Sep 4, 2013
      Awesome, beat us to it :)
      • Like Like x 2
    3. Tsnonak

      Tsnonak Let's_Kautsch!

      Dec 14, 2014
      Don't get me wrong, I do think some of the aforementioned stuff sounds totally great, my biggest concern is this:
      ... sounds like the original vision of StarMade many of us have enjoyed so much is getting shoeboxed.

      I would like to say...

      1. The core concept/mechanics of StarMade in its current state are great, it is freeform!
      2. It is the best custom-spaceblock-build-ware out there!
      3.It is the only game that gives the players /server-admins control over so many things, (custom content, configs+Rules), awesome!

      If only the things we already have were fully implemented and worked, and maybe just adding some of the things that so many want...
      instead of revamping the entire gameplay into what sounds like another 4X compilation, like the rest.

      IMO one of the best aspects of Starmade currently is its fusion of "simplicity & complexity".
      I just hope this is not lost.
      No TLDR here...
      Keep it simple & See you in Space!
      #3 Tsnonak, Jul 19, 2019
      Last edited: Jul 19, 2019
      • Like Like x 1
    4. GnomeKing

      Feb 21, 2015
      "This system is built to last a few weeks up to a certain point until the endgame is reached."

      that is a change on somewhat meta-scale ...
      • Like Like x 1
    5. Crimson-Artist

      Crimson-Artist Wiki Administrator

      Sep 10, 2013
      ive suspected something like the population system for some time now. Good to know that something like that will be added. we'll finally have a reason to build more than one station/settlement.

      I also like the Void enemies idea. Cosmic Horror suits StarMade surprisingly well.
      • Like Like x 2
    6. EricBlank

      Jul 1, 2013
      schema DukeofRealms
      So I'm still confused on this part; with your new "regions" system, does the rest of the Galaxy cease to exist, like you're not going to generate a full Galaxy anymore, just a few systems and only one deep, or is the Galaxy still there but considered "void" space and uninhabitable or something?

      Neither of those I'd really consider ideal, I rather like the Galaxy at large, even if it's not important to winning the game population/territory wise.

      Are these regions at least fairly substantial? Are resources/points of interest in them going to be hard to seek out? Otherwise you're killing the exploration aspect of the game you had previously talked about creating.
      • Like Like x 3
    7. Malum Phasma

      May 2, 2015
      I agree 100% with EricBlank . It reads as if the starmade universe will become uncomfortably finite.

      While I like the general idea of this region has abundance of this but lacks a lot of that, I had assumed that with current universe, you could explore until you find a region with the resources you needed. But it doesn't look that way. It seems that the universe as described above would become a very crowded and violent place, with a few becoming powerhouse monopolies while the reat grovel for scraps.

      And of course, if just a little up, down, or over is void, why explore? Am I reading it wrong as well?
      • Like Like x 2
    8. takethispie

      takethispie Titan-class builder

      Oct 3, 2012
      I think the stellaris map thingy is a very very huge letdown
      • Like Like x 3
    9. Alphajim

      Jul 5, 2013
      Me too. I don't mind having "point of interest" zones overlapping on z axis. Actually I would see these zones more like tiny islands into a large ocean of standard systems. Or large zones that are not touching (with a check box on the universe creation to prevent zones to touch by default).

      I don't want a quick universe as in stellaris. What I want is a long-term living universe without any reset or "winner". You enter the server, develop and become a part of its galaxy life, whatever you wanna be.
      #9 Alphajim, Jul 23, 2019
      Last edited: Jul 23, 2019
      • Like Like x 5
    10. OfficialCoding

      OfficialCoding Currently Fleet Building

      Nov 8, 2017
      I think that the points of interest could be cool. Yeah this whole thing with not being able to stay in the void forever might not be awesome but i guess that would force the players to interact, kinda like zone shrinking in a BR.
    11. Energywelder

      Energywelder Director-General, EDY

      Oct 5, 2013
      While he does use the term "Stellaris map" he might not mean 1 star deep. The region system could include areas of space where the galaxy is "extra thicc" like IRL where a galaxy can have large globular clusters that "protrude" above the galaxy's "top" and "bottom". Personally i would prefer generally thicc galaxies because i usually hang out in the bottom of galaxy cores. Above me is the stars, beneath me is the void, always gives me shivers.

      Personally the whole population thing sounds like "Colony Survival" (may or may not be its actual name, the recent Yogscast series game where they build colonies with NPCs doing all the work, some sort of job system) which wouldn't be so bad i think. I also wouldn't mind the concept of "a whole new game". Don't get me wrong, SM to me is like "I just can't quit you!" -Brokeback Mountain XD, but none of the changes sound like they'd mess too much with ship design beyond taking new factors into account like the gas cloud/dust collector system which sounds fun on the bun. And that's why we all love SM, just the epic amount of creative control we have.

      I'm vaguely intrigued by the concept of galaxies being reset because of a defined series of events including a beginning, middle, and end game, possibly facing off some apocalyptic extra-galactic invasion (using bio-technology, of course *looks at SW, WH40K, et. al.*) because Schine is entirely correct, started on a new server recently, and bootstrapping up to my 2km dyson ring space dock is insanely fun. The beginning and middle games are always the best most interesting parts.

      Nothing in Schine's responses about the direction of SM irked me really, these all sound at least vaguely interesting, if not better. Of course the devil's in the details, and he can only work so fast when SM is still kinda free, but i remain committed to the game and its future.
    12. OfficialCoding

      OfficialCoding Currently Fleet Building

      Nov 8, 2017
      I don't think so. I'm pretty certain the galaxy will not be very thicc. I think it will be more than 1 system deep though.
      Yeah that's why we love Starmade so much. I actually would like SM to turn into that because right now actual gameplay is kinda boring (but that might be because nobody plays atm)
      I don't want it to auto-reset the galaxy after X amount of time. Maybe have some extra-galaxtic invasion force come in and destroy everything (or a lot of thing) and you gotta kill them. I see a lot of gameplay possibilities with this, like all the players on the server have to team up to kill the aliens. yeah
    13. Energywelder

      Energywelder Director-General, EDY

      Oct 5, 2013
      I could definitely see the server teaming up if the end-game crisis could only be triggered by admin command. That way the admins could set up a countdown timer and alert people ahead of time.
      • Like Like x 1
    14. OfficialCoding

      OfficialCoding Currently Fleet Building

      Nov 8, 2017
      yeah that would be awesome. I see a lot of great stuff happening.
    15. Crimson-Artist

      Crimson-Artist Wiki Administrator

      Sep 10, 2013
      I think that if population is going to be a major game mechanic then there needs to be some kind of maintenance to them. Generating population without some kind of cost will become easy and OP after a while so we should have another resource called "Supplies" to balance out population.

      colonies will need a steady stream of supplies or else citizens will begin to leave, decolonizing the settlement. supplies should be craftable from factories so we can dedicate settlements to just making supplies and ship them out to the other colonies. credits and supplies should not be the same thing. credits should only go to pay the upkeep of settlements while supplies go to keeping the citizens happy and paying you credits.

      These supply streams will also allow PvP as transports can be attacked and raided.
      • Like Like x 3
    16. Energywelder

      Energywelder Director-General, EDY

      Oct 5, 2013
      I am pro colony-supplies. In fact i wouldn't mind seeing the colony using designated "zones" to develop . . . maybe not cities, but an AREA where they will build stuff. I'm thinking the bigger an area you allocate, the more population it can fit, and the area can be built out of preplanned segments, hallways and bedrooms, etc. And in this not-city could be small services that a player might want, or maybe not, just spitballing here.
    17. Malum Phasma

      May 2, 2015
      While hating to delay anything, I agree that if we have population then supplies is a very logical step for multiple reasons. Most importantly, balance. Whats to stop one colony from taking over the entire universe if there is no form of "payment" and required "maintenance"?

      And the added strategy of supply lines and routes are incalculable in war. It would prevent player A from dropping a small population in player Bs backyard and simply decimating player B from a hundred sectors away through player Cs territory. You get the idea.

      And, of course, it would give pirates, npc and pc alike, a real reason to even exist in the first place.

      Only tossing out the first thing in my mind, but measure supply lines in distance of sectors from origin to destination, and back, with the main supply point beginning either in the home sector, or better yet, the nearest faction shop that is connected to the shop network within the home sector.
      • Like Like x 3
    18. Tsnonak

      Tsnonak Let's_Kautsch!

      Dec 14, 2014
      A new can of worms... Yay!

      sorry, couldn't resist :thumbsup: bump
    19. Zoolimar

      Aug 14, 2017
      I should note that this is impossible unless mechanics for warping around change a lot. Trying to catch a hauler, even assuming it has no defensive systems, is like trying to find a needle in a haystack. You'll need to cover all the systems and sectors around the enemy system to just have a chance to catch some of them.
    20. Crimson-Artist

      Crimson-Artist Wiki Administrator

      Sep 10, 2013
      schema did confirm that raiding cargo ships will be made easy by them being visible on the map. or some kind of mechanic that would make it easier for raiders to find ships to attack.