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    StarMade University - Official Thread

    Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by klawxx, Feb 7, 2019.

    1. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      Greetings, fellow StarMade citizen. Welcome to the StarMade University!

      This is an ongoing, community driven, effort to share knowledge and help everyone master all the aspects of the game. If you have any suggestions or find any problems, please post on this thread: StarMade University - Data Collection and Revision.

      Let's keep this thread as clean as possible! ;)



      What would you like to know more about?

      (1.01) Starship Fundamentals

      (2.01) Starship Engineering Branch


      (More topics will be made available soon.)



      Our current contributors are:


      Good reading and safe journey!
       
      #1 klawxx, Feb 7, 2019
      Last edited: Mar 8, 2019
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    2. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      ===================================================================
      Starship Fundamentals - The Ship Core
      ===================================================================

      The Ship Core is the first block of your ship and cannot be re-positioned. It effectively functions as your ship cockpit. You can spawn a new ship core by using the "X" key.

      If you are new to the game its important to understand that while inside the core there are two "modes" or "states" in which you can be:

      • The flight (or pilot) mode let you drive your core and subsequently your ship around as in any other modern space-sim game.
      • The other mode is the (basic) build mode that enables you to place blocks on your ship. You can alternate between the two modes using the "Space" key. By the way, It's usually a good idea to stop your ship before doing that.
      Before you ask, yes, it's possible to place and remove blocks outside build mode, but its neither efficient or practical to do so. It's also possible to enter build mode using the Build Block.

      [​IMG]
      Do not start building yet! First it's important to check in which direction your ship bow is pointing. Nothing can be more frustrating that finding out later that you built you pretty vessel backwards... You can easily do this looking at the arrow on the top of the screen.

      [​IMG]

      I just mentioned that you cannot move the Ship Core, but if by any chance you made a mistake, there's a way you can copy and re-paste your ship blocks. This uses the Advanced Build Mode and is explained in detail further ahead (look for "Copying, Paste and Repositioning" in the "Starship Engineering" course).

      To avoid some frustration its recommended that, before you start building, you make some sort of draft of your ship, measure its size and determine the core place. You can then use a common and easily visible block. like yellow hull or purple light blocks to get the dimensions and the rough shape of your ship, by wire-framing it first.

      [​IMG]

      IMPORTANT: While in build mode some people forget that you will eventually want to get out of the core. Leave one of it sides unobstructed, with at least two blocks height, so you can walk away out of it.

      Another useful tip is to start build the ship interior, particularly the Bridge, first.

      [​IMG]

      One last tip is to use the block of your choice to mark important locations, like where is the start of the floor/ceiling and where the door shall be installed.

      ===================================================================
      ===================================================================
       
      #2 klawxx, Feb 7, 2019
      Last edited: Feb 13, 2019
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    3. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      ===================================================================
      Starship Fundamentals - Power Reactor
      ===================================================================

      The Reactor is what would, roughly speaking, determine how big your ship will be. Your primary real objective, is to produce more power than you would consume. Be warned: This isn't as simple as it sounds, since there are a lot of variables involved. Some people might even consider this some kind of art. only through experience and trial/error you will master this aspect of the ship.

      This system is compose of several blocks, but most of them are related to the optional Chamber system. Our focus here will be only two specific blocks: the Reactor Power and the Reactor Stabilizer.

      [​IMG] [​IMG]

      As your reactor grow bigger it becomes unstable. To address this, you need to add Reactor Stabilizers. The issue here is that the close the stabilizers are to the reactor the less efficient they are. This is how the reactor will determine your ship size, as I mentioned before. Keep in mind that your first 10 Reactor Power blocks are 100% stable and you only need to worry about stabilization after you place your 11th reactor block.

      [​IMG]

      There is something you can do to reduce this stabilization distance: Add extra dimensions. This may sound crazily complicated, but it isn't, once you gasp the concept. Simply place your stabilizers in opposite groups, for example one group to the left and the other to the right of your reactor. This effectively cut the Stabilizer distance in half. You can use up to six dimensions to further reduce the stabilization distance (Imagine the six sides of a dice to help you understanding this concept). You can make all sort of combinations. Just keep in mind that this might impact the shape of your ship.

      [​IMG]

      One more thing: Reactors will output 100% of their maximum energy recharge as long as your stabilization remains above 25%. If it drop below the 25% threshold you will see massive losses in power efficiency. Also, It's important to note that the reactor takes more damage when hit, if its stabilization is lower than 100%, so be warned.

      ===================================================================
      ===================================================================
       
      #3 klawxx, Feb 7, 2019
      Last edited: Feb 8, 2019
      • Like Like x 4
    4. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      ===================================================================
      Starship Fundamentals - Engines (Thrusters)
      ===================================================================

      [​IMG]

      Engines in Starmade are simple enough and do not require as much effort as the power system to build, although there are a couple of points you should keep track of.

      The engine thruster is composed by only one type of block: The Thruster Module.

      [​IMG]

      The strength of your engines will be determined by a ratio between the ship mass and the amount of installed thruster blocks. The value you needed to achieve varies between roles and personal preferences, but the maximum possible ratio is fixed in 2.5, just do not forget to keep an eye on your fuel (power) consumption.

      [​IMG]

      Always leave some extra room for engine upgrade. You will notice that as fill your ship with blocks, your engines will start to lose strength, since the mass of your ship will be getting bigger and bigger. This is easily remedied by adding some more Thruster Modules, but you will need to place them somewhere and also it's a good practice to keep systems tightly packed together, so leave some extra room on the engine bays!

      Your Maximum Speed will be determined by a server setting, but to be able achieve it you will need to have a big thruster ratio. By the way, You could also increase it by using a Mobility Chamber on your reactor (This will be discussed on the "Reactor Chambers" topic on the "Advanced Engineering" course).

      ===================================================================

      ===================================================================
       
      #4 klawxx, Feb 7, 2019
      Last edited: Feb 8, 2019
      • Like Like x 1
    5. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      ===================================================================
      Starship Fundamentals - Basic Shielding
      ===================================================================

      Shielding, for small vessels, are rather easy to understand and implement. It consists of two elements: Shield Recharger (the "generator") and Shield Capacitor (the "battery bank").

      [​IMG] [​IMG]

      The shielding system main function is to act as the first line of defense against block damage. Once your shield drop bellow 0, you will start to take block damage.

      It's recommended that you place the Shield Recharger block group deep inside your ship, so you can give it adequate protection and also cover the whole ship with it. The shield "bubble", as the name implies, have a spherical shape and some edges of the ship might end up outside of it, if placed on one.

      [​IMG]

      After you add enough blocks to the Recharger blocks you just need to place the Capacitor groups throughout you vessel, its good practice to keep them packed together, but you can have up to 20 groups. Although it's no longer enabled by default, starmade uses the concept of System Integrity, so, to avoid catastrophic explosions throughout your ship, it's recommended that you keep the capacitors in bigger groups, preferably avoiding spreading them to much apart.

      [​IMG]

      Do not forget that your shield have a power consumption. Also, It's important to understand that you have a "passive" and an "active" state. When your shields are full and you are not being hit it will consume only a small amount of power, but if you are hit and it need to regenerate itself, the power cost will be roughly doubled! Keep this in mind when doing your power consumption calculations.

      ===================================================================

      ===================================================================
       
      #5 klawxx, Feb 7, 2019
      Last edited: Feb 10, 2019
      • Like Like x 1
    6. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      ===================================================================
      Starship Fundamentals - Hull Design (Ship Exterior)
      ===================================================================

      Hull Design is a very subjective topic, since it usually deals directly with the builders imagination, more than anything, but some general pointers can be provided to help you get started.

      [​IMG]

      The first thing to keep in mind (this might sound a bit stupid, but its a common mistake), is that you ship must fit inside the desired hull.

      Inexperienced people that start building the ship by its shell usually end up finding out that there's not enough room for the systems or that the hallway they wanted to create is missing one block in diameter.

      As you build starships you will eventually stumble on some, not so popular nautical terms. If you have a hard time remembering them, use this diagram to "navigate" around ;).

      [​IMG]

      As in any starmade topic, there are multiple approaches on how to build ships. A good practice, if you are new to the game, is start building you ship from inside out. Start from the bridge, expand and connect the main hallways, leaving empty space for the desired rooms. The interior decoration is not important at this time. What we want is to get the overall shape and proportions done.

      After you wire-frame your interior, continue by placing the ship main systems. First, the Power Reactor, the Stabilizers and the Chambers. Do not forget that you also need some room for Shielding, Thrusters and weapons.

      [​IMG]

      Now, If you ship is combat oriented, specially for PvP, the catch is to build your ship starting by the weapons systems. Define how big they are and make sure you build a large enough Power Reactor to feed them. Combat ships usually have minimal interior, so there's more room for systems and armor.

      When you get used to building ships and feel ready, you can try the reverse procedure. Try to build the hull first and then the Interior and add the systems at the end. The beauty of StarMade is that you can do whatever you want and in any way you like.

      Building the hull first can even make sense if you have a size constraint, such as fit an specific hangar or if you are trying to create a replica from another game or movie. Star Wars, Star Trek and Warhammer ships are very popular in StarMade.

      [​IMG]

      If you want suggestions on how to make your ship look good, I suggest that you start by checking up what have already been done. The so called "Master Builders" of StarMade usually share their creations on the Community Content Section. Here are some names that you might want to look out for:

      Even if some of their work have been done prior to "Power 2.0" you could load their ships in Single player just to take a look around. See what you like and what you don't and try to incorporate some on your own ships. After some time, you will start to develop your own style.

      Just one last tip: You can do exterior design without wasting too many credits on Advanced Armor Blocks. There are lots of decorative blocks that can be used and are either cheaper or lighter than the overrated advanced armor. Be creative!

      [​IMG]

      ===================================================================

      ===================================================================
       
      #6 klawxx, Feb 10, 2019
      Last edited: Feb 15, 2019
      • Like Like x 5
    7. SkylordLuke

      Joined:
      Jul 24, 2013
      Messages:
      1,316
      This is a really indepth thread!!!
      I will make sure to follow it :D
       
      • Like Like x 1
    8. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      ===================================================================
      Starship Fundamentals - Ergonomics (Ship Interior)
      ===================================================================

      As in other topics, there are multiple ways to approach this subject, but there are some general tips that will help you improve your technique.

      Let's start by safety. When dealing with vital ship systems its a good practice to isolate and encapsulate them. Leaving a couple of blocks between the systems and adding a layer of advanced armor around each system could mean the difference between life and death. I personally use crystal armor, so its more easy to find where all those different systems are in build mode.


      [​IMG]

      A Role Playing (RP) element that make sense in it's own way is the use of blast doors throughout the ship. They make the ship more believable and also have a practical application: Dealing with boarding parties. Nothing can be more satisfying than trapping an enemy player on a room full of hidden turrets. Do not forget that you CAN use turrets inside you own ship for defense.

      [​IMG]

      now let's talk about interior design itself, starting with a brief explanation of the dimensions of our protagonist: Dave.

      [​IMG]

      Dave have a height of approximately two meters and a width of less than one meter. There are still some debate, but his eyes is probably located in his chest :rolleyes: (First Person Camera). This can lead to some confusion when deciding at which height tables and terminals should be placed, but they are usually placed 2 blocks high.

      [​IMG]

      While seated, Dave need one meter of clearance for his legs, although there are some exception to this rule when dealing with inverted wedges (ramps). This can lead to even more confusion.

      Another problem is that he cannot crawl under pipes or other obstacles, probably due to limitations of his space suit. It's important to keep this in mind. He would probably have a hard time walking around our International Space Station...

      Just a quick heads-up: The new Metal Bar and Light Bar blocks fill an entire square, so they can't be used on tables or anywhere you want to place a chair wedge. You could try place the chair two blocks away (one for the metal bar and the other for Dave legs) but it wont look that good. A pity :(.

      Here you can see some examples of places where Dave CAN and CAN'T sit:

      [​IMG]

      [​IMG]

      Now talking about hallways, on bigger ships you should try to make them with at least 3 blocks in height, but if you want to be creative and do multi-bock ceilings and floors, even more clearance will be needed.

      While you are building interiors it's good to sometimes leave the core and take a stroll around your hallways to see if they feel right.

      [​IMG]

      Light placement can heavily impact the atmosphere of your vessel. If you want it to feel old, or alien, using fewer lights could help to change the mood.

      Its important to remember that the Block Lighting Quality directly impact the brightness of the in-game lights. Some people might complain you ship is too bright or dark and, sadly, there's no way to remedy this at this moment. Try to inform what Lightning Quality setting you are using when presenting you ship.

      ===================================================================

      ===================================================================
       
      #8 klawxx, Feb 11, 2019
      Last edited: Feb 12, 2019
      • Like Like x 4
    9. klawxx

      klawxx Product Manager - Roden Shipyards

      Joined:
      Jan 5, 2016
      Messages:
      250
      ===================================================================
      Advanced Build Mode (Part 1 - Brush Size & Symmetry)
      ===================================================================

      The Advanced Build Mode is by far the best feature of StarMade. It enable you to turn the manual and sometimes tedious task of placing blocks into a production-line monster that would make Henry Ford ashamed.

      To enter this mode you need to access a Ship Core or a Build Block and then hold the Advanced Build Mode key (default is "Ctrl"). If you like, you could alternatively quickly double-tap the Key to leave it on. to get out of this mode just tap the Advanced Build Mode key again.

      ===================================================================
      (1) Brush Size
      ===================================================================

      The first functionality provided by the Advanced Build Mode Is the possibility to place multiple blocks at once in any of the three space dimensions:

      • The (X) axis represent Width. Change this value to make things wider.
      • The (Y) axis represent Height. Change this value to make things taller.
      • The (Z) axis represent Depth. Change this value to make things longer.
      [​IMG]

      You can combine two axis to create walls and floors. You could also use three axis to build cubic shapes of various sizes. Just be careful to not place too many blocks at once, this might generate a lot of lag or even crash your game.

      [​IMG]

      The default maximum build area is 10 in each direction, but you can increase this value on the server setting before logging in the world on single Player / local games. Look for the "PLAYER_MAX_BUILD_AREA" setting. If you do change this value, you will need to be even more careful to not crash your game.


      ===================================================================
      (2) Symmetry
      ===================================================================

      Symmetry allow you to mirror your work, duplicating what you do in any of the available symmetry planes. It's even possible to use all the three planes at the same time allowing to place up to 8 blocks at the same time. Just remember that you need to have those blocks stocked.

      [​IMG]

      To Enable a symmetry plane chose one on the Advanced Build Mode menu, on the right side of the screen and then click on top of one of the ship blocks. For example, if you want to build symmetrically to the core, Select the [ YZ ] plane and click on the top side of the Ship Core Block. Be careful, if you click instead on one of the sides you will end up with your symmetry offset by 1.

      [​IMG]

      [ XY ] - Blue - This plane mirrors the Bow (Front) and Stern (Back) sides of the ship.
      [ XZ ] - Green - This plane mirrors the Top and Bottom sides of the ship.
      [ YZ ] - Red - This plane mirrors the Port (Left) and Starboard (Right) sides of the ship.

      In starMade we usually build in odd numbers, they are more easy to keep track off, but its also possible to build in even numbers. The symmetry planes can be individually toggled for "ODD Mode" by clicking on the "ODD" buttons bellow the respective plane names, on the advanced build mode menu. If you do so, you may need to reposition the plane a few times to get it in the right spot.

      [​IMG]

      IMPORTANT: Be very careful with the symmetry planes. You probably will want to turn they off when placing computers, system blocks and some asymmetrical decorative items, specially on bigger ships. Sometimes you may forget the plane turned on and end up ruining hours of work. This will inevitably happen! It's a good practice is to blueprint your ship from time to time, so you have a "save point" to go back to.


      ===================================================================
      ===================================================================
       
      #9 klawxx, Feb 15, 2019
      Last edited: Feb 15, 2019
    10. Tshara

      Joined:
      Sep 29, 2013
      Messages:
      280
      I like this. Very comprehensive.

      As a new player I think building ships can be very daunting. This should help a lot.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    11. Neon_42

      Joined:
      Sep 11, 2013
      Messages:
      347
      A section on weapons and power usage would be great!
       
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