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How would you like fuel to work in Limit Theory?

Bah. Energy drinks are all the fuel I need!
Total votes: 12 (9%)
While I like the concept as fuel as a resource to be gathered, made and sold, I still feel actually using fuel should not be a functional part of the game.
Total votes: 27 (21%)
"Fuel" is only needed in order to start the reactor that ships use for energy/propulsion. This gives fuel value for building ships without making it particularly functional ingame.
Total votes: 12 (9%)
Only larger ships should need to use fuel, as smaller ships should have far more efficient engines. Running out of fuel in distant space is a Game Over/Deadlock.
(No votes)
Only larger ships should need to use fuel, as smaller ships should have far more efficient engines. Running out of fuel in distant space means sending a distress message for help.
Total votes: 2 (2%)
Only smaller ships should need to use fuel, as larger ships should have far more efficient engines. Running out of fuel in distant space is a Game Over/Deadlock.
(No votes)
Only smaller ships should need to use fuel, as larger ships should have far more efficient engines. Running out of fuel in distant space means sending a distress message for help.
(No votes)
All ships use fuel. Running out is a Game Over/Deadlock.
Total votes: 3 (2%)
All ships use fuel. Running out means sending a distress message for help.
Total votes: 9 (7%)
Fuel requirements should be different depending on the type of engine/drive the ship uses. Merely as an example, one slow type of engine may not use fuel at all while a fast engine might. Running out of fuel in distant space is a Game Over/Deadlock.
Total votes: 1 (1%)
Fuel requirements should be different depending on the type of engine/drive the ship uses. Merely as an example, one slow type of engine may not use fuel at all while a fast engine might. Running out of fuel in distant space requires sending a distress signal for help.
Total votes: 30 (23%)
Fuel is a part of the game. When it runs out, ships can use some form of an emergency power source instead, which may make their ship slower and/or more vulnerable but allow play to continue.
Total votes: 16 (13%)
Full speed requires fuel but ships can limp along at half speed if they run out.
Total votes: 1 (1%)
Basic engines use fuel, but as they get more advanced fuel requirements drop until they perhaps eventually disappear if researched enough in the right way. Running out is a Game Over/deadlock.
Total votes: 3 (2%)
Basic engines use fuel, but as they get more advanced fuel requirements drop until they perhaps eventually disappear if researched enough in the right way. Running out means sending a distress call for help.
Total votes: 5 (4%)
Fuel is needed for scanning/weapons/mining. You can travel without it but can't really do anything.
Total votes: 1 (1%)
Other (Please specify!)
Total votes: 6 (5%)
Total votes: 128
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#61
Other, similar to Gazz' ideas:

Fuel is for "special moves" like afterburner or jump drives, but should not be required for normal flying around.
Edit: I'm assuming there are jump gates or similar too, so jump drives are convenient but not absolutely necessary.
Fighter-type ships may have a stronger dependency on fuel (Wing Commander style) but even those have an emergency mode in which they can slowly fly without fuel.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#62
So... wait, there are people in this thread who literally have no idea that the price of oil/volatility therof is, like, probably one of the most constant sources of political violence and unrest in the last five decades?

Energy costs don't matter in the real world so why should they matter in space?

I mean, you guys, come on now. Turn on the TV. Gas prices matter.

Where do the "yeah fuel doesn't matter" guys get meaningful decisions from?

Why won't I send my gigantic uberfreighter with a full flight wing to pick up five containers full of cabbages if it doesn't cost me anything to do so? Why is the decision to send the more appropriately sized vessel meaningful? Why can't I just keep scaling up and scaling up without end if it costs exactly the same to run a 40MTonne battleship as it does to run a cheapo VW Polo sized My First Spaceship?

Big ships should be expensive. Fuel's a pretty easy and intuitive way of passing this necessary cost on to the player.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#63
McDuff wrote:...
Fully agreed. I Fully stand up for any position which requires the constant perpetual flow of goods through the players as necessary for their very survival. The need to eat, the need for energy to get stuff done, the need to be constantly chasing supplies or die is the most effective motivator, and the deciding factor in most decisions people make. Giving this to the AI will almost certainly make them more interesting and determined to live, but also be cautious and way their options.

However this is a game and some people like to escape such responsibilities, so I would be fine with a pre-game slider which determines how big a part food and fuel should play, if at all.
Why won't I send my gigantic uberfreighter with a full flight wing to pick up five containers full of cabbages if it doesn't cost me anything to do so?
The opportunity cost :roll:
Image The traditional view of robotics, the metal servant who doesn't ask questions, is merely nostalgia for slavery.
User: JoshParnell is accountable for this user's actions.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#64
To be clear, what we're really talking about here is gameplay challenge design.

When boiled down to their most basic forms, many challenges in games are fundamentally economic challenges. They are about how you, the player, choose to value cost requirements and benefit opportunities -- to try to give it a name, economic play is about resource conversion. There is a kind of fun to be found in that form of decision-making in which you try to minimize costs and maximize benefits across short-term and long-term transactions, converting resources you have into resources you want. (Other forms include resource generation [crafting, puzzle-solving] and resource denial [combat].)

Fuel exists somewhere on the spectrum of resource-conversion economic fun. Turn that dial down to zero and you lose that kind of fun; turn the dial up to eleven -- so that fuel management gates all other play mechanics and world content -- and it stops being fun because it's all you're doing.

Needing to manage fuel for higher-level gameplay is useful to a game designer because it's one more kind of fun that can be offered to players at that level. That's my main reason for endorsing it.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#65
Flatfingers wrote: Needing to manage fuel for higher-level gameplay is useful to a game designer because it's one more kind of fun that can be offered to players at that level. That's my main reason for endorsing it.
this



my personal balance suggestion for fuel is that it is used for everything.

but fuel tanks are big enough and fuel is cheap enough that it is no concern as long as the player stays in civilised areas with a small nutshell.

at larger game scales it should get more of a concern as the economy cant supply the player without noticing supply drops when refueling the fleets.
making it necessary to care about building refineries and fuel depots.


so it becomes a non-issue for lone wolfs in civilised areas, but gets a significant concern for fleet level gameplay
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#66
another idea that popped to my mind....


there isnt a the fuel resource, or even anything that is just fuel.

everything you can mine is fuel, of varying efficiency.

so while you can use anything you mine as fuel, not everything is equally efficient.


this could tie in with the ubiquitous frequency mechanic,
every mineral has its own spectrum and reactors have their absorbtion spectra.

the total produced energy depends on how much of the emission spectrum of the fuel lies beneath the absorption spectrum of the reactor.

any spectral parts that "stick out" of the reactors spectrum are wasted

any "empty" parts in the generator spectrum are unused potential
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very potent fuels would have very high peaks, but would need a specialised reactor to be utilised fully

less potent fuels would have broader spectra, but could be utilised better by a larger range of reactors


same with reactors, potent ones have high peaks, but relatively low absorbtion in bands other than their specialisation

and generalist generators would have broad spectra, but less total power



this way everything could be used as emergency fuel source, but producing and transporting fuel is still worthwile
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#67
You all are missing a big point, by this time in game (time meaning what era or epoch the game is based) the usefulness and proper use of fuel would be so studied and calculated that there will be no fuel wasted, like right now we have gas/electrical cars and just electrical cars by the time in history when we have reached this level, fuel waste would be a thing of the past.

I could see fuel consumption, but never fuel waste unless you get attacked and you tank leaks. But adding waste into the equation is an oxymoron for the space age in which the game is based. It is like saying we are flying in space but we still use arrows and bows to attack the ships. :roll: :mrgreen:
Last edited by Kambalo on Mon Oct 13, 2014 1:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#69
Cornflakes_91 wrote:you cant change basic physics, if you want energy, you have to decompose some mass to get it
Well we always can think like in Star Trek you have Dilithium crystals that you can transform on energy, but even the residual elements were used in the ship for other purposes, even to fuel electricity.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#70
Kambalo wrote:
Well we always can think like in Star Trek you have Dilithium crystals that you can transform on energy, but even the residual elements were used in the ship for other purposes, even to fuel electricity.

no process is 100% efficient, and if you have mismatched fuel/generators you are far away from peak efficiency.

its like using diesel in a gasoline engine, it migh works "somehow", but far from ideal
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#71
Okay, I have read this forum and some ideas will be canabalized, or restated. I am sorry if I use something of yours but don't give you credit. :crazy:

First, the majority of people assume that having fuel will be a micromanagement pain in the butt. Why does that have to be the case? early on someone used the green/white toilet paper example, but that's too simplified. Whether or not the ship has the right amount of fuel for a long/short journey is partially the captains problem. It is likely that he has a logistics officer to handle the majority of the problem. So, picture this.

Ship docks at station. Menu pops up.

"Hello captain. Our ship currently has enough fuel to travel X amount of distance. Fuel prices of (your required type of fuel) at this location are X amount (above/below) what we pay on average. Would you like to purchase fuel? I do not consider it to be critical at this point in time."

The logistics officer doesn't consider it to be critical so we click the nice little button that says "no". No fuel is purchased.

Now what is required to make this kind of simplicity possible?

Your "Logistics officer" looks at the distance to all surrounding known stations and calculates the amount of fuel needed to travel to the most distant system. This is set as the minimum purchase amount. Now he looks at a setting that you provide him, which is margin of safety. Say you set a margin of safety of 20%. You have told your officer that you want to have 20% more fuel available than is required to travel to the farthest neighboring station. The player determines this based on whether he travels heavily within systems before docking at stations, or whether he mostly just moves between stations with no detours. A miner may want a margin of safety thats a bit higher since he will be spending time moving through asteroid fields.

Now what if your logistics officer had said, "Fuel prices are X amount below average at this location. I suggest we store extra fuel." You may have plenty of fuel to make it to the farthest known neighboring system, but your logistics officer knows that you may want to capitalize on the below average fuel prices in this station. This feels a lot less like upkeep, and a lot more like you are making a smart decision that you can be happy with!

The idea behind this is that an AI of some kind can take care of the busy work aspects, and then determine when there is a critical or gameplay enhancing decision to be made. In fact, a logistics officer could notify you only in several circumstances such as:
1. fuel is expensive, but a resupply may be necessary. We should buy X amount more to be safe.
2. fuel is not critical, but prices are great. Maybe we should stock up.
3. This station has a type of X that we haven't seen before. This is more efficient than our current model.
4. etc. etc.

And all of these could be intrusive or non-intrusive. For instance, what if a UI menu was added for the Logistics officer. Here, information such as necessary resupplies, bargain market deals, average prices for goods you have seen before, all can be stored. You can choose to browse the information he has catologued, or just set a few items to be tracked. The tracked items will popup when certain events are triggered, such as new item discoveries, below average prices, or needed resupplies.

The idea here is to allow for micromanagement for those who want it, but provide an AI and interface that helps eliminate some of the more tedious activities such as browsing prices, resupplying all of your different consumables, etc. A vast amount can be handled by AI and UI.

There is even potential to assign different settings to different logistic officers who separately manage your military fleet and your mining fleet. At this point, high level management is not a matter of giving every ship individual supply commands, but rather a matter of allowing your assistant executive handle those things for you. You just make macro decisions and the executive follows them, only bothering you when there is the potential for extra profit, savings, or improvement.

The executives will already do these things anyways right? Why not give the player a pocket executive that comes standard on their personal ship. Then they can hire other executives to handle ships that aren't personally piloted by the player. And, the information can be sorted in a multitude of ways, due to the cool hybrid nodal interface that josh has built.

Lastly, this fits well with the idea of information markets. Your logistics officer will passively acquire useful information from the world around you and store it in the designate UI. Eventually, you may build up a database that's worthy of sale. Someone may want to purchase your knowledge of the price fluctuations in all of the systems in an area, or of all of the items that were available at the local stations the last time you visited. The "offer for sale" button could be easily accessible in the logistics officers UI.

There you go. That's my piece.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#72
First off, let me start by saying "Grats on trying to solve the puzzle"
MyNameWuzTaken wrote:"Hello captain. Our ship currently has enough fuel to travel X amount of distance. Fuel prices of (your required type of fuel) at this location are X amount (above/below) what we pay on average. Would you like to purchase fuel? I do not consider it to be critical at this point in time."

The logistics officer doesn't consider it to be critical so we click the nice little button that says "no". No fuel is purchased.
Now, the re-occuring issue has been 'how do we handle it for FLEETS. Something like this is great for single ships. But if I have a fleet of 1000 ships, all in different statuses of fuel, there are usually two camps;

1) You have a single button that says "Refuel all ships". If it's a single button, why even bother with the player having to click it? Might as well make it automatic.

2) If you have to click 'yes' or 'no' for each ship, it gets old fast and becomes tedious at best when you need to choose a selection for each ship.

It's the logistical reasons when it comes to fleets that cause headaches since handling them in the same way as single ships doesn't really make sense.

It doesn't really make sense to use fuel when you're exploring, as then you're essentially putting limits on the 'explore' track and sense most people wouldn't be gaining income when just exploring, you're basically telling explorers that they can't explore.

It doesn't make much sense to use fuel when you have a fleet, because by the time you have a fleet, the cost of fuel becomes minor if even a problem at all due to how much (probably) money you have.

Trading is about the only one that seems plausible to add fuel costs to since the whole basis of trading is 'ship from place A to place B' and then the challenge is whether or not the trading run is worth it.

But by now, I'm mostly just rehashing what has already been stated many times, so I digress. :|
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Early Spring - 1055: Well, I made it to Boatmurdered, and my initial impressions can be set forth in three words: What. The. F*ck.
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#73
I voted for "other".

I think all ships should use fuel, and to run out means a distress signal. The rescue service, of course, will charge for the tow.

There should also be equipment available to allow for alternative fueling: bussard collector (maybe more effective in certain gas clouds), a scoop or siphon for gas giant refueling, etc.

Certain actions would burn fuel faster than others: afterburner use, battles (due to constant changes in velocity), etc. OMG, imagine running out in the middle of a battle!
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#74
nwyllie wrote:I (due to constant changes in velocity), etc. OMG, imagine running out in the middle of a battle!
More like because you need more energy to supply your weapons and shields.


Magus:

you could use pipelines to refuel all your ships.
Set the comfort zone for the fuel and have it refuel when needed.

I'll publish some addition to pipelines concerning buying from external sources tomorrow...
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Re: Fuel Part 2

#75
nwyllie wrote:I voted for "other".

I think all ships should use fuel, and to run out means a distress signal. The rescue service, of course, will charge for the tow.

There should also be equipment available to allow for alternative fueling: bussard collector (maybe more effective in certain gas clouds), a scoop or siphon for gas giant refueling, etc.

Certain actions would burn fuel faster than others: afterburner use, battles (due to constant changes in velocity), etc. OMG, imagine running out in the middle of a battle!
Running out in the middle of a battle would either be extremely frightening or extremely annoying, I think... I don't think something like that could count as "fun". :)

Welcome to the forums! :wave: You slipped through the cracks somehow before, so allow me to give a warm LT welcome - and my apologies that I missed you. :P I hope you're liking it here so far.
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