StarMade - Devblog May 22nd 2017

    Discussion in 'Game News' started by schema, May 23, 2017.

    1. kulbolen

      Joined:
      Jan 4, 2015
      Messages:
      627
      thatd be nice. but even without good ai, itll be fun to have to maneuver your ship to get your select fire turrets to track better instead just making omnidirectional ones that hit anyone from anyhere =D

      yes my most disliked feature of the new proposal is the stabilizer/distance relationship.
       
    2. Joe Lorodeth

      Joined:
      Aug 29, 2015
      Messages:
      9
      Mostly, as someone who likes to have moving parts to make things more interesting and turrets to make things easy to pilot, I'd love it if systems were shared completely to simply the design.

      Perhaps if docking rails could only fail when the ship loses enough struct HP or whatever the new way to determine the "overheating" state is, this problem of entities suddenly breaking apart it combat could be resolved. So essentially, when the rail block is destroyed, it would become dulled and cracked visually and allow weapons to pass through it, but it would not release the held entities until either the core or the power system itself failed, whichever makes more sense.

      I think the point of the distance relationship is to push ship builders to design vessels larger and more interesting than a large block of systems, so creating a necessary distance between systems (or the basis of other systems which is power) creates a need to design that space. It's not too hard to implement either from a building perspective compared to old forms like power line spaghetti.

      I'm going to go out on a limb here, but other than shields, thrust and mass, it seems you are a big fan of the "every entity docked or not is its own thing". Specifically, while you say docked entities inherit power, you also say that things like thrusters, mass enhancers, chambers, etc. can't use that inherited energy, so why share it? If it's only for weapons then that just seems to make turrets much more efficient while not really allowing creative design with any other system. While I like the simplicity of this for combat I do feel that letting docked entities act like a singular one, even in things like power scaling, ought to be the way to go if possible. If nothing else, just so that modular designs and more moving parts are viable as real working ships for at least light PvE/PvP encounters.
       
    3. kulbolen

      Joined:
      Jan 4, 2015
      Messages:
      627
      i understand it, i just dont like it. i think saying "well old power also favors certain dimensions" is a bad way to justify favoring certain dimensions. id be happier if neither current nor proposed power did, but whatcha gonna do. i found ways around needing certain shapes with this system and im sure i can with the next one =p
       
    4. AlabasterJazz

      Joined:
      Jun 29, 2013
      Messages:
      22
      [QUOTE="Ignoring the fact that fuel is a tedious thing that we don't need that shouldn't be added. I think that config options that change major parts of gameplay need to be options only in times of testing and refining, they *should NOT* be core pieces of the game or code. Making large changes effectively optional in this way not only completely negates the point of the change, but is a waste of programming time and resources.[/QUOTE]

      Simply because you feel fuel shouldn't be added, doesn't mean you have a monopoly on the entire concept... I feel it should be added.
      Starmade already has robust config options, many of which severely impact gameplay; using config options in this way is an incredibly clever way to allow a diverse player base to tailor gameplay to their individual preferences - it is not a waste of time or resources if it satisfies the needs of their player base, and/or draws new customers to their product.

      [QUOTE="How would this work? This is, after all, a multiplayer game. If you for some reason were prevented from puling up the recipe for higher-tier blocks in a factory, someone else could just make them for you. And furthermore, why? What's the point? Is it an attempt to create more gameplay? If so this is one of the worst ways of going about that. Structured progression like this seems awkward to try and force on a game where you're supposed to be able to do whatever you want. The trick to making more stuff to do in a sandbox game is, quite literally, just to make more stuff to do.
      [/QUOTE]

      They already have tiered armor, other systems would have similar implementation, and adding them would allow even greater creativity, as well as a more refined control of ship design, so you are correct in saying adding more stuff to do equals more stuff to do - this game currently lacks any real reason to explore, or even trade, as you can simply produce everything from the very first day; if that's what you want just play creative. But if what we want is an interesting game built over a sandbox skeleton, then we need much more variety, a form of progression, and ways to gate progression as the game unfolds - endgame items should be very difficult to produce so as to provide a sense of satisfaction once finally achieving them

      Besides, if someone can make items for you, that encourages trade, perhaps even alliances - very important either in multi-player or single player worlds (trade with AI factions)
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
      • Funny Funny x 1
    5. petlahk

      Joined:
      Jul 30, 2013
      Messages:
      191
      Okay. You do have a bit of a point there.
       
    6. Lecic

      Lecic Convicted Lancake Abuser

      Joined:
      Apr 14, 2013
      Messages:
      5,101
      Yeah, and? The different armor tiers are massively different in function and role, and, more importantly, can be crafted from the start. Tiered systems in the way you are proposing only gives established players an even bigger advantage.

      The solution to this is uneven resource distribution, not "let's give established players even bigger advantages!"
       
      • Agree Agree x 5
    7. TrainDodger

      Joined:
      Jul 17, 2013
      Messages:
      96
      Uneven resource distribution is a very interesting idea, and I've long thought that the mining meta in the game is kinda iffy the way it is right now, because there's no need to have a real transportation infrastructure or even an economy. Most players simply create a 1-person faction and become an autarky of one. They don't have to buy anything from anyone else, or sell anything to anyone else. Anarchy reigns.

      However, part of the reason why players are encouraged to centralize their efforts and not spread out through the galaxy is because of how the sector claim system works. You get one free sector, and you are encouraged to camp the shit out of it with the mining bonus until it's mined out. Then, you relinquish the sector and reposition your homebase and repeat the process. At no point are you encouraged to actually carry out long-range mining activities.

      With the mining bonus, all spreading resources out does is encourage people to do exactly what they're doing right now, but grind at it longer until they have all the resources they need. Maybe they'd reposition their homebase more than once in a short span of time, until they have a stockpile of all the basic block types. If you want people to stretch their legs and go for a walk into adjacent sectors, you have to get rid of the mining bonus and just have a flat mining rate across the board. They should make sector ownership confer different benefits, like a credit tax on all trade in a sector, or the ability to create quests for other players with credit reward, or better fleet control. Basically, everything except mining.

      Most of my miner designs incorporate ore containers that automatically draw from main storage, with the general idea being that they can be detached, picked up by a tug, and flown to a refinery for processing. During the exchange, an empty container can be dropped off for the miner to pick up and resume mining immediately, without needing to return to base. Thus, a transportation chain is created, with tugs moving back and forth between the miner and the refinery. Under the current system, with mining bonuses encouraging players to camp, there's no reason to even bother with long-range ore transport.
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    8. Lecic

      Lecic Convicted Lancake Abuser

      Joined:
      Apr 14, 2013
      Messages:
      5,101
      I can't say I've heard much about people moving systems, considering how asteroids respawn after a while. They usually just claim extra systems if they're managing to eat all the asteroids in a system before the ones in their home system respawn.

      Assuming in the future asteroids don't respawn, though (they shouldn't outside of the systems around spawn so new players have something to mine), there are a few solutions to the problem of people potentially moving constantly to get the resources they need.
      1) Planets should have a passive resource generation mechanic to encourage setting up and claiming planets for long term, steady income that players can fight over.
      2) Players will not want to give up control of the resource they have a large share in the market of and will be more likely to invest in trade deals and infrastructure to sell the resource in the area they set up in rather than constantly move.
      3) Other players and NPC groups will also want to try and control important resources to sell/use and thus it will be hard to move wherever you want without factions and corporations demanding you pay tolls, fees, and taxes to be moving and mining in their space.

      A nomadic play style will not be impossible, but these players will likely be secluded to the outer arms of the galaxy where long travel times and less valuable resources make trading and establishing warp infrastructure too expensive for most people to want to bother.

      Mining bonuses for claims being removed will not make the problem of people packing up and moving in a non-regenning uneven resource scenario does not fix your problem. The benefits you are describing do not help the solo player, and all they really do is encourage people to not claim systems at all. Uneven resource distribution and passive resource generation are the keys for encouraging people to set up permanently and trade.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
      • Informative Informative x 1
    9. TrainDodger

      Joined:
      Jul 17, 2013
      Messages:
      96
      If mining bonuses are the only reason to claim sectors, then the sector claim system is fundamentally broken. It's illogical, anyhow. It doesn't correspond to anything in real life. If I put down stakes in the ground out in the wilderness, does that make the gold vein under them suddenly balloon to four times its size? Owning a plot of land IRL does not increase its yields any more than if you were squatting on it.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    10. Lecic

      Lecic Convicted Lancake Abuser

      Joined:
      Apr 14, 2013
      Messages:
      5,101
      Mining bonuses should not be the ONLY reason to claim sectors, but they should be one of them. Most of the other benefits that are proposed or are in game (taxation, fleet control, scanning bonuses, map presence) are only useful for larger factions. If you remove mining bonuses, 1-3 man factions will have zero reason to even want to claim a system, and will probably leave the system unclaimed so they can mine without the threat of someone deciding to check out that territory on the map.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    11. Joe Lorodeth

      Joined:
      Aug 29, 2015
      Messages:
      9
      Considering discussion from the devs of future uneven resource distribution, this seems like a great way to do it. Particularly if that means more unique planets designed around the theme of the resource they provide, as that offers reason to explore as well as camp. Think if a new undiscovered planet had a few highly valuable outcroppings of some rare resource, but then you would need to "mine the core" or something to continue to get a study supply. Then your average new player could just derp around the edge of the galaxy and still get some trade value while the established factions could fight over control of the bigger or rarer mining operations that take quite a bit of time and resources to set up.

      If that is accomplished in this manner, I'd suggest that asteroids continue to respawn to let new players find at least SOMETHING on their trip to the outer rims, but perhaps at a slow enough rate with few enough rare materials to make established factions ignore them for more profitable core operations. Add a few monsters to give AI fleets a tough time exploring without guidance (scanning that allows a player-piloted ship to actually avoid pirates anyone?) and you have yourself some real options to make the game fun for more people.

      Anyway, the new chambers and power system offer the chance to add some new rare resources to the game that have practical use, so hopefully this all gets sorted out SOON(tm).
       
    12. petlahk

      Joined:
      Jul 30, 2013
      Messages:
      191
      This talk about uneven distributed resources reminds me of the old Civcraft servers which, while now dead, did a lot of experimentation of how to set up such a system on the large-scale in Minecraft of all things.

      Edit 1:
      Also, I love the idea of this. But, I think that there needs to be some way to design competitive ships in lieu of some resource. Which now that I think about it, becomes easier with the chamber system.

      For example, in lieu of having the resources to build shields you are able to access to a few resources that make your armor tougher, and that give you the ability to better counter shields with your weapons.

      And, along the same vein there should be a better system of weapon specialization. For example, Someone has weapons that are specialized against shields and average against kinetic defenses such as armor, but I have the ability to specialize a weapon that's really good against heavy chamber assisted armor, but absolutely horrible against shields.

      This way, I can specialize my ships to be good in certain very specific areas, but bad in others, and that could be based on the resources available to me.

      Now that I think about it, the chamber system is a good start to this. But, to truly make it make sense, not only does there need to be a system of more rare and specific resources, but also a little bit of a rethink and re-specialization of weapons.

      One way, I think, that weapons could be re-specialized without completely scrapping the (fairly creative) system of combining weapons that we have now is rethinking the weapon types, and making each more specialized. As well as coming up with more damage and resource specific weapon combos.

      For example, instead of everything just being a generic energy weapon that does average against shields and average against armor, there should possibly be a differentiation between different types of resource specific weapons. Instead of cannons and missiles being just another energy weapon they could be more geared toward kinetic with EMP (chambers) giving them some ability to overcome shields, but not great ability. Beams could be focused on shield damage due to being a bit of an energy based weapon. And, a new weapon, lets call it 'plasma' could be a compromise between shield and armor damage.

      Instead of the effects modules we have now, there could be resource specific weapon 'chambers'. And maybe instead of having the current system of combining different weapon systems for different effects there could also be resource specific 'firing effects' that act in a similar way to the way weapons work now, but due to being a different category would give a slightly more sensible way of combining things.

      An added benefit of tweaking the weapon system to have effects be moved to a chamber like system and things like rapid fire, shotgun, high-explosive (more blast radius) moved to 'firing effects' would be a degree of added granularity not only in the ability of the devs to balance things, but also in balancing around, and contributing to, a larger possible economy.

      Those are my thoughts. Maybe I should re-post this as a proposal. Feedback is much appreciated!

      Edit 2:
      Having a wide variety of resources behind walls of uneven distribution that are balanced in different areas would also make it much harder for any one faction to get all the resources needed to build a titan that is strong in all areas. In terms of kinetic defense/offense and energy defense/offense. It would make it easier to a fleet of smaller ships each specialized in different ways to take down larger ships with a heavy focus on one way. This would encourage alliances to be able to take down large titans. And, this would make it harder to specialize any but exceptionally large ships to be able to have strong specialization in more than a few areas due to the space required to build ship effect chambers, weapon effect chambers, weapon 'firing effects', shields, armor, thrust, power, ect...

      Edit 3:
      Thinking about this also gives me a clearer understanding behind why the devs chose to have chamber size be based on a mass relation to reactor size. You would need a larger reactor to effectively power a larger ship, but by making the chambers also need to increase in size the system helps to make it that much more difficult to build a ship that is 'chambered' in more than a few different special abilities/passives due to space constraints. Without the mass relation between chamber and reactor it would be far easier to build a ship with the ability to have effects in all areas.

      While this would make the ship weak due to lack of specialization, it would still leave the door farther open for large ships to be able to get away with it due to just having space.
       
      #72 petlahk, May 27, 2017
      Last edited: May 27, 2017
    13. Lecic

      Lecic Convicted Lancake Abuser

      Joined:
      Apr 14, 2013
      Messages:
      5,101
      Competitive ships should be extremely difficult to build without a proper trading network or heavy reliance on raiding. Uneven resource distribution does not mean none of resources that aren't most prevalent in an area, just that they are significantly less common to promote trading.

      So.... pierce effect weapons?

      I think that limiting weapons based on their physical attributes rather than their functional attributes is a bad idea. Cannons are dumb projectile damage, missiles are smart projectile damage, and beams are hitscan damage. Players should be able to get shield, armor, and block damage in whatever method they prefer.

      I'm not sure if the weapons system should switch to a chamber system. If it diverges from the Primary/Secondary/Effect and allows for even more customization options, that sounds like a real balance nightmare.
       
    14. ltmauve

      Joined:
      Aug 28, 2013
      Messages:
      1,835
      I'm just going to throw down my two cents on the inheritance rules:
      Does it produce it's own power? If so, it only gets movement, nothing else.
      If it isn't, it gets everything, including the chamber effects. And I would like to see back-inheritance as well (shields and thrusters giving effects down the tree)
       
    15. Ithirahad

      Ithirahad Arana'Aethi

      Joined:
      Nov 14, 2013
      Messages:
      4,104
      It isn't, and it shouldn't. It'd be not only hard to balance (kek) but likely unnecessarily complicated to program, and incredibly cumbersome for the player to build and optimize TBH. Chambers should be chambers; weapons and their support systems should be their own thing.
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    16. PyroMancer2k17

      Joined:
      Mar 14, 2017
      Messages:
      2
      One reactor per ship does contradict the goals and frankly makes no sense as most ships would have multiple power sources working in tandem to ensure uninterrupted power flow since having one on stand by would mean it takes time to power up. Also having different reactors linked to different chambers in different areas of the ship would be nice.

      When it comes to reactors there can be a few ways to limit the multi-reactor build.
      1) Reactors have the same restriction that Stabilizers to Reactors do in terms of distance. That means 2 reactors built too close to each other would cause reduced effectiveness.

      2) Reactors effect all stabilizers in that if you have reactors on front and back of the ship as well as stabilizers there the front reactor can't just use the back stabilizers for increased efficiency but rather it would lower the efficiency of the nearby front stabilizers if they were within range. This way 2 or more reactors would create an area of reduced effectiveness for stabilizers much larger than one giant reactor would.

      3) Fuel - The ships have limitless power so they can just keep getting larger and larger. The power soft cap seems to have been an attempt to prevent that. But with say fuel added the reactors would need to have a constant source of fuel from the cargo hold, or at least until their internal reserves wore out since weapons are also getting reserves. This way regardless of if a ship has two 1K block reactors or one 2K block reactor the fuel usage would be the same and larger ships would use more fuel.

      Honestly I really like the idea of fuel because something Starmade lacks is that "survival" aspect that most other games in the genre have. Your character usually needs to eat, drink, or etc in order to survive so their is always that sense you have to maintain some minimum setup to go without struggle. And since starmade is all about the ships having them be the constant resource drain only makes sense which is what fuel would do since building a massive ship is fine and all but if you can't keep the thing fueled it's kinda pointless to have.

      For point 1 I don't really see a problem with this. Docked ships usually don't have the thrust to more a larger ship both in game and RL so it makes sense that when you don't you don't steer where you are going. When a fighter jet lands on a carrier and is then moved off the main deck into the hold the pilot doesn't gain control of the carrier.

      With regards to point 2 the main reason this is an issue is because of all the crazy soft cap and other mechanics put in that made abusing dock entities more efficient. The docked entity is usually there as a way to get around some cap/mechanic and thus the trade off for the benefit I think is reasonable of having a single point of failure.

      On point 3 a lot of the issues I think would be resolved if the docked entities were all just treated as one ship when it comes to power and shields. This would eliminate need to abuse the docking system. Like if docked ships original combined their power calculations, like they should have, docked reactors would have never become a thing since docking and extra 10K reactors would have been the same as adding 10K worth of reactor blocks to the main ship which would have hit the soft cap. Instead of getting two soft capped entities in one and thus doubling the power.

      Why not do both? We already have Turret and Docking blocks in the game where one allows freedom of control to move and aim while the other solidly locks your ship in place as if it were part of the main ship. So add a new type of block to handle complete merge, a "merge block".

      How exactly it works could be left up to debate but I see two main possibilities.

      Option 1) It acts much like docking block only it allows the complete merge of statistics. This route holds the problem of having ships with one block weak point where they could break apart.

      Option 2) The ships completely merge into one entity. This could be handy for modular ship design as the piece can be assembled into a single massive ship. The only real issue would be since they are becoming one entity there would not be a way to separate them and the merge blocks would just be extra mass at that point. But it would eliminate the 1 block weak point issue.

      Though I'm not sure how hard this would be to setup but in terms of them merging into a single entity I wonder how hard it would be to unmerge them? Perhaps when the merge happens the ship your in telling to link has it's merge block set a link to all the blocks in your ship. This way an unmerge would simply look at what blocks were attached to it and it would then create a new entity using those block thus allowing things like modular ships to swap out sections rather than just being modular only in the build phase.

      Honestly though this type of functionality in terms of swapping out sections would be a perfect fit for the shipyards.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    17. Alphajim

      Joined:
      Jul 5, 2013
      Messages:
      114
      Already pointed out by the devs that SM won't be survival.
      As an optional config, fuel is good. As a main feature, that's crap for all of those who want to play in a short session, and don't want to waste their precious time refueling their ships for the sake of "more survival".
       
      • Like Like x 1
    18. AlabasterJazz

      Joined:
      Jun 29, 2013
      Messages:
      22
      I haven't heard that Starmade won't eventually have survival aspects, and that's too bad if true... There is a lot of potential for interesting stories to emerge on a galactic scale. But even still, I'd like to see a greater sense of progression and for Starmade to eventually be a full-fledged game wrapped around a sandbox skeleton - modders will eventually make it happen, even if official development doesn't. I do agree that all options should be configurable to appeal to a wider range of play styles
       
    19. Ithirahad

      Ithirahad Arana'Aethi

      Joined:
      Nov 14, 2013
      Messages:
      4,104
      ...Aaaand that's precisely why it won't have 'survival aspects.' Schine'd rather people be busy exploring, mining, trading, building, shooting at each other, and managing their empire than fiddling around with hunger and thirst bars.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    20. Seijuro

      Joined:
      Mar 9, 2014
      Messages:
      10
      I believe those 'survival aspects' refer to ship upkeep rather than player upkeep, which in itself can go a ways toward keeping people mining and trading.
       
    Loading...