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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#16
Hey there,

found this thread with the search function (being proud of myself). Planetary interaction/colonization is one of my favorite topics and I could go on and on all day about this..I think it really could add a whole new layer of gameplay (for ppl who like empire building like me :)
I think most Ideas in this thread are great, but I still got some additions I'd like to throw in the discussion. I'm talking 100% from a consumer perspective here, please don't ask me how to do all this stuff :)

EDIT: I'm sure some of this stuff has been talked about, I'll bring it up again anyway ;P

- First regarding colonization and planetary buildings: I think it might be a nice to not have all ships being able to land on planets. It would allow for whole new classes of ships like specialized dropships, which can drop ressources or complex building parts and so on to planets. Or planetary landing ships, made for athmospheric flight, or vice versa. And Maybe allrounder ships that can do everything but less effective. For inhabitat planets there could be docking ports orbiting the planets and you can take a shuttle to landing locations. I think being able to colonize a whole new planet should not be an easy task, which requires a great deal of research, money and time. Even if you have the tech and fundings it should not be a too fast process overall IMHO. But it has to be well balanced between realistic and fun speeds :D
Also it would be nice if you then yourself could build docking ports and stuff for NPCs to trade with your stations and so on.
Another nice feat. imo would be to also have some sort of population/happiness/food supply and whatnot systems. I'd imagine that by default you can have station managers or some sort of major for your settlement who will manage most of the small details, but you can give him directions what to do OR dig yourself deep into the system and give manual orders to increase efficiency (kind of like what X:Rebirth was going for, I didn't like what they've come up with though. Too little depth imo, modders are already adding to that but still ... mmh )

- Another thing I'd like to add would be a influence system (Like endless space for example, I really liked this part about it). When you build up your empire or even a single station could have like an influence radius (which can be increased with tech and research) in which NPCs from this station will buy or sell stuff and generally do what they do ... This could also nicely be visualized with this super awesome nodebasee universe map (I'm thinking endless space like areas here which can be toggled on and of for better visibility). I'm also thinking about this for your 'sensor range', basically so that you can always see everthing in realtime inside your influence radius, but not outside (talking about the command view and universe map here).
I think this + above suggestion also wouldn't necessary break the the ideas Josh had in mind with limited ressources and stuff. Ressources will deplete and at somepoint the player (or AI) will be forced to expand into the border sectors of his empire thus increasing his influence. Also faction standings might aswell influence this systems and where you want to expand to. I'd imagine at some point when you have a pretty large empire you would have like your border sectors where most of your ressources get mined and your core sectors which are well protected and where the large scale production and import/export happens.

- This brings me to another point: Government
This somewhat ties into above influence thingy. I think it would be nice if there were big factions, each with their own terretory and independent government (Which the player also can have later on) + smaller factions and corporations which inhabit the space of the large factions and are bound to their law, taxes and so on (ofc there will always be pirate scum and the like in less secured space). The government areas are displayed the same way the 'influence' radius is shown, on a larger scale ofc (toggle on/off). So it's kind of like in real life, there are big factions but also smaller entitys which can also gain power and influence or even take over parts of the world/galaxie if they want to...
It's really the same i was talking about before but on a larger scale...It would also be nice if the player (assuming he is powerfull enough to enforce it :) could take taxes from local NPC corps which are in your terretory. OFC if NPCs think your taxes are too high or you can't protect them because of incompetent local authoritys they won't come in the first place...


Ok I kind of scratched the surface of these topics but I think you can imagine where this is going...I'm up for further discussion tho ^^
Speaking to you a huge space, RTS and pocket-empire fan who now goes to smoke some first...
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#17
again finite resources forces expansion for both the player and the AI. The AI (Faction A) needs to get more resources to further its current goal and keep it's credits in the green, however Faction B has lots of untapped resources. This is how core areas of nations develop, they exhaust a portion of what they can use at the time, they weigh their economic longevity, and expand.

Of course through research more resources become able for use; instead of stone tipped spears now we can make bronze swords. Of course a balance of replenishment is a good idea, space is infinite, instead of respawning it where it was, relocation to force AI exploration, as opposed to linear travel, as well as variety in plans of action. If a field of rocks respawns really far away from any beaten path, it might be quicker to go to the next system until the distance there begins to exceed the field at the respawned rocks.

Forcing expansion this way would give the universe a living, breathing feeling. At times a faction might weigh that a foreign faction mining in this region is bad for business, just plain doesn't like them, or has a stat high in Xenophobia (another suggestion) who then fires upon the mining vessel starting a conflict. Both up their anty in the war department and evolve rapidly illegalizing certain goods the other faction produces, becoming more aggressive, and eventually when the dust settles you have one or more factions with a serious core systems security force. Something should be implemented to put special weight on a capital of an empire with it's outskirts less heavily trafficked but frequently patrolled. Perhaps the weight should also mention that shipyards with a high yield output should stay in the core region or also be heavily defended.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#19
schnief wrote:Hey there,
-snip-
I've generally thought of all ships as being atmospheric-worthy but it does make the game more interesting if some were not atmospheric ships. Dedicated space-only ships ditching all the atmospheric flight control and reentry systems for increased cargo space or a dedicated atmospheric-only platform for specialized planetary operations would be fun. Now you have to build a staging base on the surface of the planet for effective troop operations on the planet. :thumbup:
In Josh we trust.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#20
Hardenberg wrote:While I do dig the idea of planetary nodes, I have one big problem with the concept. And that is that a planet is basically just another space station with a funky docking screen. Manufacturing, research, armaments, ship construction facilities and sensors are already present as elements for space stations.

I'd like to see planets offering something unique, something to make them desirable for a player, something that a space station can't do or can't have. Else, we can simply slap the existing space station mechanics onto a planet and call it a day, since the result would not justify any extra work.
Long ago, for another game, I posited what purpose planets would serve.

Quite frankly, I could only think of one thing. Once you have easy access to space, pretty much every resource you need is available in massive quantities, and there is no pesky gravity complicating recovery. From a strictly utilitarian view, there is no point to planetary life.

The purpose, therefore, of planets, is that living in space pretty much sucks. People like having a home. They like not living on a ship and being surrounded by metal bulkheads and radiation shielding day in and day out. They really love blue skies and grassy fields and whatnot.

So the purpose to a planet is to make people happy.

Consider owning a factory. Sure, you could put it in space, but your workers are not going to be particularly thrilled at the prospect of living there, and will demand quite a high wage. Putting it on a nice earthlike planet would mean they can demand far less. A mars like planet somewhere in between, and a venusian hell hole would be even worse than space.

So basically, you set up shop on a planet because its going to cost you less money to do. You have to worry about pollution and terraforming to make it a better home. As far as mining and such go, you're much better served tearing up a dwarf planet or asteroid, something that was never massive enough to differentiate and doesn't pose much of an issue if you want to dig down to the core.
TanC wrote:I've generally thought of all ships as being atmospheric-worthy but it does make the game more interesting if some were not atmospheric ships. Dedicated space-only ships ditching all the atmospheric flight control and reentry systems for increased cargo space or a dedicated atmospheric-only platform for specialized planetary operations would be fun. Now you have to build a staging base on the surface of the planet for effective troop operations on the planet. :thumbup:
The problem here is the question: When does a planet become a planet?

These ships, from all accounts, have stupendous amounts of delta-v, and no small amount of thrust. There are really only two considerations that would prevent a ship from landing on a particular planet.

1) Does the ship have a high enough thrust to weight ratio? Does the ship have enough delta-v? Perhaps a ship could not land and take off again from earth, but what about Mars? The moon? Ceres? Ceres has 3% of earths surface gravity, surely virtually any ship could land there. Basically, the idea of saying some ships can land on planets and some ships can not is more than a bit implausible, since it depends completely on what planet is being discussed.

2) Is the population of the planet ok with the ship landing there? I can imagine some hesitance on their part about allowing a ship that weighs hundreds of thousands or millions of tons to land with its fusion drives putting out gigawatts of power, tearing up the landscape, and spewing radiation everywhere.

There should be no widget that says 'You are now allowed to land'. Instead, each ship should be treated individually. Instead of 'This ship can not land', you see 'This ship does not have the required thrust to land on this planet', or 'Ships of this class are not allowed to land on this planet by law'.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#21
CutterJohn wrote:
TanC wrote:I've generally thought of all ships as being atmospheric-worthy but it does make the game more interesting if some were not atmospheric ships. Dedicated space-only ships ditching all the atmospheric flight control and reentry systems for increased cargo space or a dedicated atmospheric-only platform for specialized planetary operations would be fun. Now you have to build a staging base on the surface of the planet for effective troop operations on the planet. :thumbup:
The problem here is the question: When does a planet become a planet?

These ships, from all accounts, have stupendous amounts of delta-v, and no small amount of thrust. There are really only two considerations that would prevent a ship from landing on a particular planet.

1) Does the ship have a high enough thrust to weight ratio? Does the ship have enough delta-v? Perhaps a ship could not land and take off again from earth, but what about Mars? The moon? Ceres? Ceres has 3% of earths surface gravity, surely virtually any ship could land there. Basically, the idea of saying some ships can land on planets and some ships can not is more than a bit implausible, since it depends completely on what planet is being discussed.

2) Is the population of the planet ok with the ship landing there? I can imagine some hesitance on their part about allowing a ship that weighs hundreds of thousands or millions of tons to land with its fusion drives putting out gigawatts of power, tearing up the landscape, and spewing radiation everywhere.

There should be no widget that says 'You are now allowed to land'. Instead, each ship should be treated individually. Instead of 'This ship can not land', you see 'This ship does not have the required thrust to land on this planet', or 'Ships of this class are not allowed to land on this planet by law'.
Well, if the game is now going to be using the Heisenberg drive concept, it will make sense that only certain vessels will be able to land, because the efficiency of the H-drive reduces in proximity to massive objects. To be able to traverse a planet, a ship equipped with an H-drive would need it to be extremely specialised towards mitigating this effect. The more massive the planet, the more these drives will need to be able to compensate for this factor.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#22
ThymineC wrote:Well, if the game is now going to be using the Heisenberg drive concept, it will make sense that only certain vessels will be able to land, because the efficiency of the H-drive reduces in proximity to massive objects. To be able to traverse a planet, a ship equipped with an H-drive would need it to be extremely specialised towards mitigating this effect. The more massive the planet, the more these drives will need to be able to compensate for this factor.
Well sure. It doesn't need to be pointed out that you can make unrealistic explanations to any issue. I'm pointing out a flaw in the standard lines of thought on whether a ship can 'land'. It is not a binary yes/no. It depends on the thrust you can produce, and the gravity of what you're trying to land on.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#23
CutterJohn wrote:
ThymineC wrote:Well, if the game is now going to be using the Heisenberg drive concept, it will make sense that only certain vessels will be able to land, because the efficiency of the H-drive reduces in proximity to massive objects. To be able to traverse a planet, a ship equipped with an H-drive would need it to be extremely specialised towards mitigating this effect. The more massive the planet, the more these drives will need to be able to compensate for this factor.
Well sure. It doesn't need to be pointed out that you can make unrealistic explanations to any issue. I'm pointing out a flaw in the standard lines of thought on whether a ship can 'land'. It is not a binary yes/no. It depends on the thrust you can produce, and the gravity of what you're trying to land on.
It's not an unrealistic explanation of the issue, though. As in, it wasn't pulled out of thin air to suit this particular need. The H-drive concept was already designed with the idea that the drive becomes less efficient around bodies of significant mass, and it just happens that that property works well for balancing which ships should be able to land on planets. It introduces no more handwaving beyond what the original H-drive concept originally required, in other words.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#24
I'm not talking about your silly h-drive concept. I'm talking about the idea that a binary yes/no on whether a ship can land is fundamentally irrational.

Can my hypothetical ship land on a 10km asteroid? It better. Something that small would have virtually no gravity, maneuvering thrusters could handle the job. How about a 50km asteroid? A 100km asteroid? 500km dwarf planet? 1000km moon? etc?

What drive a ship uses doesn't change the question of 'what prevents a ship from landing'. The answer, of course, is the ability to take off again. And that is going to depend entirely on the ship and what its trying to land on. Having a blanket 'This ship class can not land' makes zero sense.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#25
CutterJohn wrote:I'm not talking about your silly h-drive concept. I'm talking about the idea that a binary yes/no on whether a ship can land is fundamentally irrational.

Can my hypothetical ship land on a 10km asteroid? It better. Something that small would have virtually no gravity, maneuvering thrusters could handle the job. How about a 50km asteroid? A 100km asteroid? 500km dwarf planet? 1000km moon? etc?

What drive a ship uses doesn't change the question of 'what prevents a ship from landing'. The answer, of course, is the ability to take off again. And that is going to depend entirely on the ship and what its trying to land on. Having a blanket 'This ship class can not land' makes zero sense.
Well, yeah...that's what I'm getting at too. At the end of the day it is a binary yes/no matter. Either your ship will be able to land on a planet and be able to take off again, or it won't. But like you said, it will depend on the mass of the body and the drive system of the ship and that's what I was getting at when I said "The more massive the planet, the more these drives will need to be able to compensate for this factor."
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#26
ThymineC wrote:Well, yeah...that's what I'm getting at too. At the end of the day it is a binary yes/no matter. Either your ship will be able to land on a planet and be able to take off again, or it won't. But like you said, it will depend on the mass of the body and the drive system of the ship and that's what I was getting at when I said "The more massive the planet, the more these drives will need to be able to compensate for this factor."
Which is the same thing I was saying in the first post...

Ultimately, there should be no 'Can this ship land on planets: Yes/No' piece of equipment. There should be 'Can this ship land on this planet: Yes/No'.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#27
CutterJohn wrote:
ThymineC wrote:Well, yeah...that's what I'm getting at too. At the end of the day it is a binary yes/no matter. Either your ship will be able to land on a planet and be able to take off again, or it won't. But like you said, it will depend on the mass of the body and the drive system of the ship and that's what I was getting at when I said "The more massive the planet, the more these drives will need to be able to compensate for this factor."
Which is the same thing I was saying in the first post...

Ultimately, there should be no 'Can this ship land on planets: Yes/No' piece of equipment. There should be 'Can this ship land on this planet: Yes/No'.
Arguably, planetary landings become more and more limited, the higher you go with the ship class sizes. A destroyer would be more likely to be able to land on a planet than a battle-cruiser.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#28
Alimarin wrote:
CutterJohn wrote:
ThymineC wrote:Well, yeah...that's what I'm getting at too. At the end of the day it is a binary yes/no matter. Either your ship will be able to land on a planet and be able to take off again, or it won't. But like you said, it will depend on the mass of the body and the drive system of the ship and that's what I was getting at when I said "The more massive the planet, the more these drives will need to be able to compensate for this factor."
Which is the same thing I was saying in the first post...

Ultimately, there should be no 'Can this ship land on planets: Yes/No' piece of equipment. There should be 'Can this ship land on this planet: Yes/No'.
Arguably, planetary landings become more and more limited, the higher you go with the ship class sizes. A destroyer would be more likely to be able to land on a planet than a battle-cruiser.
I agree with you. If, say, a player is flying a relatively large ship and wishes to explore a planet, I feel it would be appropriate for them to bring a shuttle along in a docking bay or something. To land on the planet, they'd need to switch to the shuttle and fly down in it. Right now, the transitions between space and planets aren't seamless, but if Josh did make them seamless at some point, I would quite like to experience undocking a shuttle from a capital ship and then flying it through a planet's atmosphere to its surface. It brings to mind all the away missions in Star Trek.
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Re: Planet interaction/building/colonizing etc.

#29
so... necro again:

what if the capability to land on planets was not a default state for ships?

make planetary landing capability a distinct piece of equipment.
(VTOL thruster, Antigrav Engine whatever)


as "equalizer" a corresponding planetary structure could be introduced to enable ships to land without them having the equipment mounted
(planetary tractor beam array, etc)
this installation could then have different power classes.
small installations to enable small ships to land, up to gigantic arrays that pick superfreighters from orbit and deposit them safely on the ground.


so a developed planet like a trading hub or shipyard planet has a couple of gigantic arrays to enable fast and easy transport of wares and ships

while a newly colonised planet doesnt have any support stuctures and you have to bring your own landing capabilities.


if you colonise a planet or go down without official support (read: invading) you have to bring landing ships or equip your mothership with expensive landing capabilities

and when you haul cargo between the equivalents of coruscant and corellia you dont have to care about landing, as the planet supplies that for you.


maybe even make the planetary landing capability a fixed stat instead of a mountable piece of equipment.

so that you actually have to design your ships with landing in mind

:think:

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