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Author Topic: Economy & Outposts  (Read 41647 times)

Alex

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2017, 06:43:12 PM »

Eh, that's a neat enough implementation. Just thought something that has a more direct effect on combat would be nice as a thing you can invest in. Players might see more value in an upgrade where you see a Hound bumble into a mine and explode or see a Cerberus get swatted out of the air by a big gun, rather than a little "Attack on Outpost X repulsed" in the corner of the screen. Also might spruce up combat a bit.

Yeah, I see what you're saying, but I think players may also see the value of ground defenses after a pirate raid steals a bunch of their one-of-a-kind blueprints and factory cores :)


Not bad overall; it definitely feels a lot more solid and I like the approach to clean up the system under the hood a lot!

Thanks!

It also feels like a lot of pages to look at to do any analysis, with few keys in the main UI to steer players there explicitly.  "You'll discover by mousing-over things during <context>" probably won't be enough guidance.

The commodity rows act like buttons - highlight and sounds on mouseover - and the tooltip has a bright green "click here for more information", but still, yes, I definitely see what you're saying. I suspect a tutorial involving telling the player to click on one of these would be a good idea.


I understand the fact that you do not want the game to become a 4x game, but if only the player can "colonize" planets, I could build an empire and almost no one could oppose me, which would not make much sense.

I suppose there are a limited number of planets that we can have under our command, right?

Right, yeah. The general idea - and, again, things may change etc etc - is that you're pretty limited in how many outposts you can have under your control. Say, something under 10 if you fully skill into both personal management and administrators, with it being a soft cap with a heavy "mismanagement" stability penalty for going over. If you need to go over, there'd possibly be some options where you give up more control and it becomes essentially useless aside from supplying your other outposts with stuff (e.g. "Grant Autonomy") in exchange for not having a penalty.

I would like an event that if I sell data from one planet to a faction, as the faction more inclined to claim.

The more valuable the planet is, the more likely that that happens, it would also be great if that event is influenced by the needs of that faction at that time.

It would not make sense that factions colonize planets with scarce resources or that it is not profitable.

Yeah, all these things make sense, just have to figure out how everything around that works to see if they're a desirable thing to add.

The AI factions will be able to improve their industries just like the player?

Maybe? Pre-made markets are generally a self-contained entity where if there was a reason to upgrade something, it probably would've been done by the time the game starts, so this doesn't seem strictly necessary.

Are we going to have a limited number of structures that we can build according to the type, size and resources of the planet?

Some industries require the right planetary conditions - Farming requires some type of farmland, Mining requires ore/organics/volatiles deposits. Other industries are limited by their upkeep, especially on high-hazard planets. For example, a volcanic world might have great ore deposits, but if you were to build everything else there, you'd pay way more than necessary, and a better apporach might be to build a refinery etc on a safer planet nearby.

I feel that we still lack capital ships and ships unique to the factions, with the exception of Try-Tachyon and the Hegemony they have enough exclusive ships.
Are we going to have new exclusive and non-exclusive ships in the future for the factions?

Conceptually, factions draw from the same pool of ships - aside from a few special, rare blueprints - since they're all "Human Domain" ships. I would like to make faction fleets more distinct, though, but perhaps the way to go there isn't through unique hulls but unique built-in hullmods. Not sure, though; will just have to see how it goes.

Thanks in advance for your answers

Thanks for your interest in the game :)


Does demand being met by supply spawn trade fleets doing the trading between those two markets? If so, having a way to highlight their path on the map would be really cool - makes it easier to be a pirate and/or market-disrupting capitalist. Plus, those routes would make for good places to spawn mission targets in the style of "pirate John dickerson is wanted dead, he's been spotted preying on traders on the System 1 - System 2 route" and "market X is putting out a bounty on pirates on the Market X - Market Y route (spawn targets as appropriate)".

It does spawn trade fleets, yeah. But there would be so many "connections" like this that trying to highlight them on the map would be very messy - it's not quite a fully-connected graph, but it's not too far off from that, either.

However, you do get a heads up that a notable (i.e. large and/or carrying valuable goods) trade fleet is preparing to launch nearby; this is specifically with piracy in mind, so that your hunting can be more than random.

(Man, do I have some things I'd like to do with respect to how non-player pirates work. Hope I get to it.)


Thank you for the answers. As for the first, I understand. Maybe not to the point of personally designing every loadout, but more of "Standard Patrol Fleet A has two cruisers, 4 destroyers, 8 frigates, etc." and "Planetary Defense Fleet has Two capital ships, and assorted escort" is what I would envision for some player control but not too much micromanagement.

Right, I see. I don't *think* so, but... maybe? I guess I could see setting some faction-wide fleet composition doctrines, similar to how the current factions have those set up. Hmm. Yeah, I'll keep this in mind - glad you brought it up. Even if I don't end up doing it, it's something I need to think about.


For my second question, I'm asking whether it would be possible for the player to build up and supply a fleet entirely on their own via personal convoy or would it absolutely require a waystation chain? Example: I find two Earth like planets relatively close to each other on the edge of the sector. I establish a couple outposts/colonies. Will they survive long enough for me to go back to the main space and return and supply on my own, or do I have to build that chain of waystations to have any chance?

Ah, gotcha. I believe it would be possible - shortages etc will not actually kill off your outpost for a while, they'll just degrade their functionality heavily. My current thinking is that something like multiple months at 0 stability is what it takes for things to fall apart. Plus, you could always bring a ton of supplies and other commodities when you go out to establish the colonies.

There's a "local resources" submarket that's specifically intended for dumping resources into for the outpost to "absorb" into its economy as needed. For example, if you dump 5000 Food into it, and the outpost has a Food shortage of 1, then it'll keep taking 500 Food or whatever from there every month. The idea is that you don't have to micro-manage it every month, there's just a place you can put stuff for the outpost to use. Still, I'd expect it to be a lot easier to establish a proper supply chain, and maybe do manual resupply in special circumstances.

Third, I saw administrator but didn't want to jump the gun since this is such an early look.

Hah, I appreciate you not wanting to jump to conclusions, that's admirable restraint :) My answers here are about as much of an "early look", though!


I can't wait to set up my own little corner of hyperspace, make them self sufficient then eventually fleets that are large enough to have their own "Imperial Death-march" theme as they fly to their enemy's stations
Oh man, this looks great. It's going to be interesting figuring out where to build outposts for maximum profit.

:D
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XCTrailBlazer

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #16 on: September 19, 2017, 07:22:11 PM »


Right, yeah. The general idea - and, again, things may change etc etc - is that you're pretty limited in how many outposts you can have under your control. Say, something under 10 if you fully skill into both personal management and administrators, with it being a soft cap with a heavy "mismanagement" stability penalty for going over. If you need to go over, there'd possibly be some options where you give up more control and it becomes essentially useless aside from supplying your other outposts with stuff (e.g. "Grant Autonomy") in exchange for not having a penalty.
 

I like the concept that if you go the "limit" the game gives you a penalty rather than put a limit which can not exceed in any way.

Yeah, all these things make sense, just have to figure out how everything around that works to see if they're a desirable thing to add.

Anyway, it does not have to be an event neither very rare nor very habitual so that the sector does not get out of control.

I do not want to imagine the entire sector plagued with new AI planets in the short term or that at a very advanced point of the game you only see a few planets colonized by the factions.


Maybe? Pre-made markets are generally a self-contained entity where if there was a reason to upgrade something, it probably would've been done by the time the game starts, so this doesn't seem strictly necessary.


I suppose that the AI with the time develops more industry as it obtains more resources and the economy advances or on the contrary that it has to cut industry by extra costs.

Everything will depend on the direction of the sector and the faction, right?

Some industries require the right planetary conditions - Farming requires some type of farmland, Mining requires ore/organics/volatiles deposits. Other industries are limited by their upkeep, especially on high-hazard planets. For example, a volcanic world might have great ore deposits, but if you were to build everything else there, you'd pay way more than necessary, and a better apporach might be to build a refinery etc on a safer planet nearby.


I am glad to know that, I would not like the planets to become "Gaia" planets that have everything and can build everything by obviating the planet's wealth and other factors, this would make the valuable planets lose a lot of wealth.

Conceptually, factions draw from the same pool of ships - aside from a few special, rare blueprints - since they're all "Human Domain" ships. I would like to make faction fleets more distinct, though, but perhaps the way to go there isn't through unique hulls but unique built-in hullmods. Not sure, though; will just have to see how it goes.

I understand it perfectly and it is totally logical, but I notice that some factions that a priori are "powerful" do not have their own flagships, Like Persean League or the Sindrian Diktat.

It makes sense that you make with each faction modified versions of the ships as has the hegemony with its "XIV group" variant instead of making ships for each faction in exclusive.

I have to admit, I want to see more capital ships and cruises, I can still add a few: D

Two mores questions:

Will we see any new faction or the persean league was the last big faction in the sector?

Will we have any news of the man's dominance in the game?

A kind of reconquest fleets would be a lot of fun or a kind of "crisis" for the late-game and change the power board in the sector.

Some very important events would be very good, since it would force the player to adapt to them and that the game did not become linear in the mid-late game.

I'm sure you have something prepared up your sleeve with gates or something very important that we do not have information yet.

As always, thanks for the answers.


« Last Edit: September 19, 2017, 07:42:47 PM by XCTrailBlazer »
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Andy H.K.

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2017, 03:38:17 AM »

Hmm.... does the "cincinnatus" tag means anything?
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Mr. Nobody

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #18 on: September 20, 2017, 04:00:32 AM »

One question about the new supply/demand system since the wording in the blog post wasn't entirely clear:
Assuming i have a market that produces 8xfood, is it able to supply other markets demand up to 8 food (ie: market 1=4 + market 2=3 + market 3=1 =8, supplier can not supply any more food) or is it able to supply an arbitrary amount of markets that require less than 8 food (ie: it can supply 50000000 markets that need 6 food)?

That or a bit of clarification in that part in general, whatever floats your boat (or thrust your ship? How does the say change when taken into space?)
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orost

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #19 on: September 20, 2017, 04:36:59 AM »

One thing about the new system isn't clear to me. Can markets meet their demand by importing from multiple sources? E.g. if Kazeron needs 5 food, but only exporters available can offer only 4 food each, can it meet its demand (or at least alleviate its shortage) by importing from some number of them or will it just pick the best one of them and be stuck at a 4/5 shortage?

I got the impression that it's the latter but that makes some things weird. For example then having local food production doesn't help protect against a famine at all unless it can meet all of the market's food demand and it's useless to produce something if you can't meet any one market's entire demand even if there is an overall shortage of the stuff you're producing.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2017, 04:38:34 AM by orost »
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Histidine

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #20 on: September 20, 2017, 04:54:25 AM »

Outposts eh? I see my "wait for Alex to implement in vanilla" strategy is paying off.

It's great news that the system is more robust and runs much faster now, but part of me just can't get over the whole "one 4 supply market can supply infinite 4 demand markets" thing. Or the "market can only buy commodities from one supplier" thing, for that matter. :-X

Various questions:
  • Will trade routes have any faction checks besides same/not-same faction? It'd make sense to prefer suppliers with whom the faction has a good relationship (preferably even modifiable in mod API, for things like "free trade agreement" or "trade embargo" events).
  • Ha, we can control commodity legality now! How will legal status influence production and trade? (How badly do things break if you ban food?)
  • Smuggling was briefly mentioned in the blogpost; do you want to explain the effects here, or are those still being worked on or such?
  • In Mount & Blade the player can buy a productive asset (e.g. a bakery or ironworks) in a city belonging to an existing faction, and collect the profits it generates to fund their warmongering imperialistic ways. Might such a feature be expected here?
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Schwartz

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #21 on: September 20, 2017, 05:43:05 AM »

Got a few questions about that logarithmic scale. 'Cause I find it quite interesting but some details are too abstract for me.

A 5 food market can satisfy other markets that require 5 food. Does that take into account at all how much food the supplier takes out of his own supply, or how much the other markets are lacking? Could a 5/4 supply/demand market satisfy 3 other 0/5 markets? Is anything actually taken from the supplier as a result or does he remain a 5/4? What if the three other markets were 4/5, would that make any difference in how this whole calculation works? How can he partially meet the demand of a 5/6? Fractions?

As I understand it, using a scale where each number increments an order of magnitude means we're giving markets a big leeway to satisfy demands with 'imaginary' surpluses. How will shortages happen at all unless someone consistently interrupts shipping lanes?
« Last Edit: September 20, 2017, 05:44:38 AM by Schwartz »
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Megas

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #22 on: September 20, 2017, 06:26:25 AM »

One question:  Will factions try to expand and build outposts too?

I guess why they may not is the major factions are kind of busy with their wars and politics, and enough of the rest find it easier to just steal or destroy the goodies found.  However, NPCs that try to build an outpost elsewhere (and succeed if not stopped) would give some urgency for the player to find a good planet and build fast (assuming we cannot conquer and steal their outposts).
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gruberscomplete

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #23 on: September 20, 2017, 07:58:02 AM »

Will players be able to raid markets like pirates? Will we be able to steal factory cores and LPCs?

Can we build factory cores or buy them somewhere?

Will we be able to techmine or research technologies and LPCs?

Will outposts built in proximity to a black hole create special bonuses?
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Thana

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #24 on: September 20, 2017, 09:54:31 AM »

Ooh, very nice! This is just the sort of thing I've been looking forward to since campaign mode was originally added in!

A question: are there plans for secondary, automated offensive (or active) fleets for the player? I mean, you say there'll be patrol fleets to defend outposts, but can you also buy an AI-controlled fleet to, for example, raid a certain system?
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WastedAlmond

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #25 on: September 20, 2017, 09:56:47 AM »

One (semi?)interesting way of allowing more than X amount of outposts could be to allow the creation of independent(faction) outposts. This way you could create an independent minor supplier outpost for yourself and other surrounding places, while keeping your personal administration points for more interesting planets. This could lead to Independent planets becoming very common though, and I don't know how the faction itself interacts with the other factions.

Cool stuff overall, can't wait to see the systems in-game when they're ready!
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Alex

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #26 on: September 20, 2017, 10:20:31 AM »

Will we see any new faction or the persean league was the last big faction in the sector?

Hard to say for sure, but nothing like that is currently planned.

Will we have any news of the man's dominance in the game?

A kind of reconquest fleets would be a lot of fun or a kind of "crisis" for the late-game and change the power board in the sector.

Some very important events would be very good, since it would force the player to adapt to them and that the game did not become linear in the mid-late game.

I'm sure you have something prepared up your sleeve with gates or something very important that we do not have information yet.

I'll just say that we have certain plans/ideas for the end-game, but I certainly don't want to talk about them.


Hmm.... does the "cincinnatus" tag means anything?

Mhm. Bit of an obscure reference, I'll be surprised if anyone gets it.



Assuming i have a market that produces 8xfood, is it able to supply other markets demand up to 8 food (ie: market 1=4 + market 2=3 + market 3=1 =8, supplier can not supply any more food) or is it able to supply an arbitrary amount of markets that require less than 8 food (ie: it can supply 50000000 markets that need 6 food)?

It can supply any number of markets with up to 8 food. To make it more clear, hopefully: a market supplying another market with something has no effect on its ability to supply something else with the same thing.

That or a bit of clarification in that part in general, whatever floats your boat (or thrust your ship? How does the say change when taken into space?)

("Whatever keeps your air in", perhaps?)


One thing about the new system isn't clear to me. Can markets meet their demand by importing from multiple sources? E.g. if Kazeron needs 5 food, but only exporters available can offer only 4 food each, can it meet its demand (or at least alleviate its shortage) by importing from some number of them or will it just pick the best one of them and be stuck at a 4/5 shortage?

Only one source. So, multiple sources of 4 food can never build up to being 5
food.

I got the impression that it's the latter but that makes some things weird. For example then having local food production doesn't help protect against a famine at all unless it can meet all of the market's food demand and it's useless to produce something if you can't meet any one market's entire demand even if there is an overall shortage of the stuff you're producing.

Partially met demand is still valuable. For example, food shortages currently give a -1 stability penalty per unit of food that's missing. Local food production, even below demand level, can help protect against shipping disruptions. A market can also export what it's producing, even if it's getting the bulk of its demand filled elsewhere. For example, if you need 5 food and are importing 5 food, but producing 4 food, you can still export up to 4 food. Another market might also import less than its full demand from you if you're the best available source.


Outposts eh? I see my "wait for Alex to implement in vanilla" strategy is paying off.

:)

It's great news that the system is more robust and runs much faster now, but part of me just can't get over the whole "one 4 supply market can supply infinite 4 demand markets" thing. Or the "market can only buy commodities from one supplier" thing, for that matter. :-X

I think it makes good enough sense if you squint a bit :) Logarithms! Production scaling! Economy of scale! *handwaving intensifies*

(Consider also that there's "reach", and a preference for in-faction suppliers, so the case where it starts making less sense - when a single market is supplying like 20 other markets at full capacity - is rather unlikely to actually manifest itself.)

  • Will trade routes have any faction checks besides same/not-same faction? It'd make sense to prefer suppliers with whom the faction has a good relationship (preferably even modifiable in mod API, for things like "free trade agreement" or "trade embargo" events).
I've been thinking about those kinds of events/treaties/etc, yeah. Not sure where that'll go. I don't want to factor relationship in, though, since that might make things too confusing to try to figure out. "Same faction" then "stability" is not too bad, and throwing in "also, treaties" might be alright too...

  • Ha, we can control commodity legality now! How will legal status influence production and trade? (How badly do things break if you ban food?)
Not sure on the details quite yet. Am pretty sure you won't be able to make food illegal, though - I'd imagine a narrow set of commodities will be tagged as "can be made illegal".

  • Smuggling was briefly mentioned in the blogpost; do you want to explain the effects here, or are those still being worked on or such?
It's not quite done, but what's already in place is this - imports via smuggling reduce stability, at (total units / market size) * 2. Out-faction imports reduce stability at half that rate.


  • In Mount & Blade the player can buy a productive asset (e.g. a bakery or ironworks) in a city belonging to an existing faction, and collect the profits it generates to fund their warmongering imperialistic ways. Might such a feature be expected here?
I don't think that'd be a very good fit for industries in Starsector - in M&B, those industries are pretty separate from the city and its ownership, but in Starsector, the industries more or less make up the market, which is designed around a single faction owning it. Something separate could of course be tacked on (talk to NPC, invest, etc) but, being separate, it,s well, separate from the outpost stuff.


A 5 food market can satisfy other markets that require 5 food. Does that take into account at all how much food the supplier takes out of his own supply, or how much the other markets are lacking? Could a 5/4 supply/demand market satisfy 3 other 0/5 markets? Is anything actually taken from the supplier as a result or does he remain a 5/4? What if the three other markets were 4/5, would that make any difference in how this whole calculation works? How can he partially meet the demand of a 5/6? Fractions?

It doesn't matter what the supplier uses of their own supply - if it produces 5 food, it can send up to 5 food to any number of destination with no penalties whatsoever.

As I understand it, using a scale where each number increments an order of magnitude means we're giving markets a big leeway to satisfy demands with 'imaginary' surpluses. How will shortages happen at all unless someone consistently interrupts shipping lanes?

Conceptually, it's not surpluses but production being easily scaled within a certain range, but not beyond. Shortages could happen due to any reason that disrupts production or shipping; I'm not actually sure I understand the question.

(I'll also note that the log scale is also mostly conceptual. Much like a size 5 market doesn't produce 10 times the patrols that a size 4 market does, the same sort of thing will apply to all other areas where market sizes are directly involved in gameplay.)


One question:  Will factions try to expand and build outposts too?

I think I answered it earlier, but in brief - maybe, but if they do, I wouldn't expect it to be on a large scale.

I guess why they may not is the major factions are kind of busy with their wars and politics, and enough of the rest find it easier to just steal or destroy the goodies found.  However, NPCs that try to build an outpost elsewhere (and succeed if not stopped) would give some urgency for the player to find a good planet and build fast (assuming we cannot conquer and steal their outposts).

Hmm. I don't know if rushing the player like this is a good idea, plus that implies outpost construction on a scale where all the "good" planets would get used up, and that seems like a bit much.


Will players be able to raid markets like pirates? Will we be able to steal factory cores and LPCs?

Will we be able to techmine or research technologies and LPCs?

Will outposts built in proximity to a black hole create special bonuses?

Good questions, maybe :)


Can we build factory cores or buy them somewhere?

Current thinking is you would be able to occasionally buy a "corrupted" core that has various industrial penalties, only allows d-hull production, etc. A pristine core, you'd have to find through scavenging or perhaps acquire through some other means. Really need to see how it all shapes up, though.

Ooh, very nice! This is just the sort of thing I've been looking forward to since campaign mode was originally added in!

:D

A question: are there plans for secondary, automated offensive (or active) fleets for the player? I mean, you say there'll be patrol fleets to defend outposts, but can you also buy an AI-controlled fleet to, for example, raid a certain system?

It's not something I want to commit to outright, but definitely thinking about how that sort of thing could work.

One (semi?)interesting way of allowing more than X amount of outposts could be to allow the creation of independent(faction) outposts. This way you could create an independent minor supplier outpost for yourself and other surrounding places, while keeping your personal administration points for more interesting planets. This could lead to Independent planets becoming very common though, and I don't know how the faction itself interacts with the other factions.

Yean, more or less what I'm thinking here as well, as far as the "Grant Autonomy" button. I *think* you probably wouldn't need too many of those around - once you've got one source of Food or Ore or whatever, you really don't need any more - but yeah, if those became super common, that'd get weird. Maybe those could get some sort of penalty if there's too many of them, too, and eventually decivilize, or something.

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Kanil

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #27 on: September 20, 2017, 11:03:23 AM »

A market being able to supply an infinite number of markets sounds a little silly in theory, but in practice it's probably a welcomed simplification, especially when setting up your own bases.

My biggest concern is that it probably results in highly specialized markets -- if your 8 food world can feed all your other worlds, then there's no real reason to bother develop food on a 7 food world. "Our planet's really quite fertile and capable of growing a lot of food, but we don't bother because there's a slightly better planet next star over."

That's really the only thing that really concerns me at the moment. It mostly just doesn't feel right.
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Gothars

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #28 on: September 20, 2017, 11:27:00 AM »

A very interesting read, way better than the last economy blogpost! I'm a big fan of simplifying complex mechanics while keeping their functionality, that's the hallmark of elegance. For me the logarithmic scaling works wonderfully.

One question about it, though: In one example Jangala produces 8 Organics, but consumes and exports only 6. So there are 2 organics freely available. Are these the 2 missing from logarithmic 8, so that Jangala actually only exports and uses ~1% of its organics? That seems as if it would absolutely crash prices.
Or maybe, if the 8 doesn't represent production but "production scaling potential", it would help to write  "Up to 8 produced by mining" or "8 can be produced by mining" or something.




every game would involve "put down waystation at planet X" for an optimal start, since the starting economy conditions are not randomized.

Isn't that true for outposts, too? Once you found the ideal planet with great market connections in the core worlds you'd want to settle on it every time, no? Maybe some randomness on the unsettled core world planets would help.
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Althaea

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Re: Economy & Outposts
« Reply #29 on: September 20, 2017, 11:31:09 AM »

@ Kanil: Remember that distance is a significant factor.

I can't say for sure, but it looks a lot like the reach of your typical outpost will be measured in no more than a handful of light years, and distance is equally important to size. Theoretically you can overcome this with lots of waystations, but that's probably going to get pretty expensive.

You'd have highly specialized markets if they could all be guaranteed to reach each other, sure. But you'd need to be pretty damn lucky with your exploration, since I'm guessing production is capped by the natural features you find. And even now the highest ore systems tend to be separate from the most habitable (i.e. food-producing) systems.
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