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Author Topic: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production  (Read 35980 times)

Tartiflette

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #45 on: February 13, 2018, 09:25:15 AM »

That also goes my way though: If colonies are just a money-to-ship converter, loosing one might not be such a big deal. But if they also have some rare and shiny blueprint chips loaded in their factory, now you may want to protect them at all cost or at least long enough to extract them and retreat!

I would also prevent having many "cheap" colonies just there to churn out weapons and that one ship you were lucky to find the blueprint of.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 09:27:17 AM by Tartiflette »
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Techhead

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #46 on: February 13, 2018, 09:37:18 AM »

I dunno how I feel about the "it could take a full month to get a couple of Light Machine Guns delivered". I guess the player should get used to ordering things ahead of time and buying off the open market if something is needed in a hurry.
Well... the Size 3 world pictured has a production capacity of 60,000c/mo, which is enough to make dozens of LMGs.
Interesting, I expected something different for the blueprints. In particular the fact that they can be learned and effectively "duplicated" in every player owned shipyard seems to go directly againt the premise of the blog:

Copying these is difficult-to-impossible, and their dwindling supply contributes to the gradual decline of the Sector.

I was expecting something more like "shipyard loadouts" akin to the carriers, where blueprints are an object you have to mount in production slots of the right class or above, and balanced by a similar system as Ordinance Points. (And obviously upgrading the shipyard would have raised the amount of "OP", the production slot sizes and their number). Blueprint packages would have fitted such system perfectly.
Yeah, I assumed similar but I'm guessing that it was abstracted away to reduce the amount of fiddly-ness. Well... I didn't expect finite production slots, I had imaged just having shipyard database and they can pull whatever blueprint they need this week out of storage on demand.
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WastedAlmond

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #47 on: February 13, 2018, 09:43:11 AM »

Interesting, I expected something different for the blueprints. In particular the fact that they can be learned and effectively "duplicated" in every player owned shipyard seems to go directly againt the premise of the blog:

Copying these is difficult-to-impossible, and their dwindling supply contributes to the gradual decline of the Sector.

I was expecting something more like "shipyard loadouts" akin to the carriers, where blueprints are an object you have to mount in production slots of the right class or above, and balanced by a similar system as Ordinance Points. (And obviously upgrading the shipyard would have raised the amount of "OP", the production slot sizes and their number). Blueprint packages would have fitted such system perfectly.

I'd "headcanon" it so that there is indeed only one factory producing the blueprints, but it is able to supply many shipyards with its hulls/weapons/components.
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Cyan Leader

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #48 on: February 13, 2018, 10:38:22 AM »

From Alex's twitter:

Quote
Realized I glossed over an important point in the new blog post - namely, AI fleets' ship weapon loadouts in the campaign are now dynamic, using what's available based on blueprints and production quality.

So the variant system is gone? Does this affect all factions or just player owned ones?
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Alex

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #49 on: February 13, 2018, 10:42:41 AM »

I want to say that if i didn't know that SS is combat orientate before, i might think this is some kind of 4X game since the management UI look a lot like those. You fit in a lot of detail and info, yet, the UI itself doesn't look like complete pile of mess like Paradox's game. Impressive, Alex.

Hah - I actually kind of like Paradox UI's, in as much as I've played their games :) But in any case, thank you!


Now that the terms are actually player-visible, have you consider renaming the "Low-Tech/Midline/High-Tech" classification system and/or reclassifying ships? eg. Having "Tri-Tachyon" with all the canonical TT-designed hulls and sliding the remaining High-Tech ships into another category.

I don't think that'd make sense; the in-use-by-TT hulls are (mostly) not something designed by Tri-Tachyon and frequently available to other factions. See: Wolf (H) for the Hegemony, for example.


So you can tailor your faction fleets in ship type and armament? That does sound awesome, but would it have a major impact on the campaign layer? Like, would having a high aggression fleet type be better in some circumstances than a cowardly fleet type? I feel that while the system might be cool from a lore-wsie standpoint, it doesn't really have  astrong effect on the campaign level.

Right, as I mentioned a few posts above, doctrine settings are almost entirely combat-layer-focused. I could see adding a setting or two for something campaign related, when/if it becomes clear what that something might be, but that's something to be careful with, so that some settings don't become clearly-best.


I like the d-mod approach better.
Very rare things can be a pain since you really want to use them in battle, but losing them is frustrating.
Really liked when junkers/recovery were added for this exact reason, you get to shoot things without worrying about losses too much.

Wasn't thinking about that, but that's a very good point.


Aww yeah! The next update seems really nice! And uh, excuse my excited suggestion but: As a big fan of really endgame upgrades/customisations, could it be possible to find object(s) similar to nano-forges, that would allow you to create your very own faction specific hullmod? Similar to what has already been suggested, but aimed at player fleets exclusively, as we want to keep "elites" special (and as we know the player is super special and they like to feel like it). Would be really awesome to push the envelope with a hull by just a few more percents towards your preferred playstyle. (An atlas with less OP but more cargo space? Load and pray indeed. Or a combat ship with a few more OP & speed, but less armor)

Imagine finding a domain era "advanced materials" database allowing you to design a hull mod, with some set amount of points OR selectable archetypes. Of course applying this hullmod would require an advanced shipyard and cause a significant price hike, as the factory would have to implement nonstandard advanced materials etc. As a final note on this, maybe they shouldn't be as powerful as XIV, as a trade off for that customization. Plus I'd hate it if XIV ships would end up devalued by player made creations, even if expensive. Could even tie it in with AI cores or some rare materials that would need to be bought from around the sector, to facilitate such exotic upgrades.

In the end, this is just me wanting to have more cake, but being able to finetune juuuuust a little bit in the end game would be very fun. Sorry for my ramblings and thanks for the update, very exciting!  ;D

Hah! This sounds neat, but again, an optional, maybe-later extra. There's a lot of cool ideas for endgame things, and I've got a list :)


Top row second item on the first image. Looks like a high tech ship but I just noticed that fighters have the same BP look as ships so it could be a fighter... Also, will be be able to find BPs in wreckage of ships? How about [REDACTED] fighter BPs? Will they be able to be found?
Protip: fighter blueprints have a slightly different exterior and a triangle in their background. Also, that's a Claw blueprint.

Right, yes, Claw. (I've got a todo item to see if I can make fighters render on blueprints as a full wing, but it might turn out to be unreasonably tricky and I don't want to spend too much time on it.)


Does this mean... vanilla implementation of randomized variants?!

Yes! I should've made that explicitly clear in the post.

I dunno how I feel about the "it could take a full month to get a couple of Light Machine Guns delivered". I guess the player should get used to ordering things ahead of time and buying off the open market if something is needed in a hurry.

Hmm. Will have to see how it plays, but could see making mini-orders near instant, for example, if "ugh, waiting a month for a few extra weapons to slot in" became an issue.

Runtime generated lootboxes?

(not entirely serious)

Hah! No, the blueprint packages are hand-made and not randomized. Although if you wanted to, there's nothing to stop you from making it that way. ... other than a few laws, regulations, and common decency.


Does availability of ship parts, metals, etc. affect capacity?

Inasmuch as these shortages affect "Ship Hulls & Weapons" production - "production capacity" is based on that.


Will it be possible to alter the appearance of your ships?

For instance, the wolf exists in various different sprites (TT, hegemony, neutral, damaged to various degrees and pirate)

Will you be able to swap between these or alter the appearance of your ship sprites somehow?

A color variable area on ships would be nice so that you can change the color by a palette

As far as custom colors - I don't think so. We gave it a shot a while ago and, long story short, it was hard to make it actually look good.

As far as using different versions of a ship like the Wolf - yes, you can decide which (if any) you want to prioritize, once you have the blueprints.


Starsector blog posts are the best blog posts. It feels weird seeing all this new stuff since it's been ingrained in my mind as "distant future" content. Now there's exploration, outposts, officers, ship and weapon manufacturing, missions and who knows what else. It's a gigantic leap you've made and it's hard to believe how far the game has come. I'm also quite curious as to what's next, all the stuff that has been added lately and this future update is what the community has requested the most since the game was publically available. The only thing I can think of would be expanded diplomacy and dialogue.

Thank you! I know just what you mean about the "distant future", sometimes it feels absolutely surreal to be finally working on this stuff.

(As far as what's next, well, :-X)

Dare I say that Starsector is going towards the status of feature complete?

I mean, it's been doing that since the first release, so :)


If pirates can steal stuff from our colonies, can we do the same to others' (that are our enemies), either by subterfuge or direct combat?

A very good question, and definitely something I've been thinking about. I will say that if one was possible, then the other would likely be too, but we'll see.


Adding to Megas question, is colony and faction interaction (as in, attacking other stations, taking over colonies and being able to dominate the sector) a feature planned for this release at all? This sounds more like something for 1.0 while this release would only cover the basis of the system.

Hard to say - I'll have to get a bit further and then make some decisions about what mechanics to make "real" and what things to stub out with placeholders.


Interesting, I expected something different for the blueprints. In particular the fact that they can be learned and effectively "duplicated" in every player owned shipyard seems to go directly againt the premise of the blog:

Copying these is difficult-to-impossible, and their dwindling supply contributes to the gradual decline of the Sector.

I was expecting something more like "shipyard loadouts" akin to the carriers, where blueprints are an object you have to mount in production slots of the right class or above, and balanced by a similar system as Ordinance Points. (And obviously upgrading the shipyard would have raised the amount of "OP", the production slot sizes and their number). Blueprint packages would have fitted such system perfectly.

Backstory-wise, I figure blueprints get moved around on courier ships if needed (rarely!), and plugging one into an autofac/nanoforge/whatever lets it make a short-lived copy - good for cranking out a few Hound (A)'s or whatever. In a setup like that, handing physical control of a blueprint to another faction would be something that Just Isn't Done. (Could be fun to intercept courier ships though, hmm.) Might also be possible over hyperwave, in some very specific circumstances. Naturally, the "how it works" is fluid and will be mercilessly hacked to make it work in-game.

I did initially consider a system where you had to put the blueprints where you want them to be used, but... I think it's another one of those "using realism as a starting point" things that gets way overcomplex unless it's used as a starting point to simplify from. In most cases you'd just want to stuff them into the same heavy industry anyway (unless there's a slot system like you're talking about, which imo raises the level of "overcomplex" another few notches).

Basically, I don't want the player to have to micromanage potentially a ton of blueprints and manually move them around between colonies. While packages and so on cut the number down significantly, that's "good enough" for the current system, but I suspect would *not* be good enough for a system where you have to manage them in more detail. Plus it's one more potentially fairly complex UI to handle this. Also, modspecs already work this way, so it's in line with an existing mechanic.


A blueprint, any blueprint, should be rare and precious to player, which current system doesn't support at all. Like that second/third/nth ITU modspec I find now and then not getting the awe and respect as much as the first one :P

Huh? I think you're saying that the *second* blueprint of a rare thing you get isn't as interesting, but that's not even in the same ballpark as "doesn't support at all". That's crazytalk :) And besides, a second master copy could have major impact, depending on whether "sell to a faction to let them build it" was in the game, and it would likely be a large chunk of credits in any case.

Another question:  If player grants a colony autonomy, or if an enemy steals one of your colonies, does your formerly-owned colony use your blueprints and resources to produce items, or do they immediately swap to the new owner's pool of resources?

I'd expect "autonomy" would work differently from "taken over". "Autonomy" is intended to be a limited-autonomy; something you do to stop governing directly, without assigning an admin - you lost most of the benefits of controlling it, but retain ownership of it, and it's nominally still part of your faction. So I'd expect it to have access to your blueprints in this case, vs being actually taken over. But that's hypothetical since the "grant autonomy" button doesn't actually do anything yet :)


That also goes my way though: If colonies are just a money-to-ship converter, loosing one might not be such a big deal.

Hmm - I'm not sure that developing heavy industry everywhere would be great, necessarily. Have to see how it plays out, but what I'm imagining is the production queue being idle a good portion of the time anyway. And certainly not being utilized to the point of it being the primary point of colonies.


Well... the Size 3 world pictured has a production capacity of 60,000c/mo, which is enough to make dozens of LMGs.

There may be a few AI cores involved in achieving that level of production in a size 3 world. But LMGs are what, 50 credits each? No problems there regardless.


I'd "headcanon" it so that there is indeed only one factory producing the blueprints, but it is able to supply many shipyards with its hulls/weapons/components.

Hey, yeah, that's another way to think about it - other heavy industry shipping pieces that don't require a blueprint (armor plates, bulkheads, fuel tanks, etc), to a production center that has the blueprints and makes all the fiddly stuff. I like that!


So the variant system is gone? Does this affect all factions or just player owned ones?

The stock variants are used as "goal" variants when outfitting ships with available weapons; this affects all the factions (but can be gotten around easily by mods, if they need to do that).
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Clockwork Owl

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #50 on: February 13, 2018, 11:11:39 AM »

So the loadouts are actually dynamically autofitted? Ooooooh. Sounds like another mod will be dying a most glorious death.
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Techhead

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #51 on: February 13, 2018, 11:50:04 AM »

Now that the terms are actually player-visible, have you consider renaming the "Low-Tech/Midline/High-Tech" classification system and/or reclassifying ships? eg. Having "Tri-Tachyon" with all the canonical TT-designed hulls and sliding the remaining High-Tech ships into another category.

I don't think that'd make sense; the in-use-by-TT hulls are (mostly) not something designed by Tri-Tachyon and frequently available to other factions. See: Wolf (H) for the Hegemony, for example.
The example was based on some extrapolations from all the light blue similarly-styled hulls, similar colors used in TT livery, and the descriptions of a few of them that mention TT specifically. I had assumed that ships in the hands of other factions were based on pre-collapse TT designs shared across various Domain worlds, or similar.

Anyway, my thought was that the different categories each have a bunch of similar ships and then a few divergent ones. When it's under-the-hood stuff the oddballs don't matter so much as when the player sees "here's the ships in X, here's the ships in Y" and it cements the categories in their mind.
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Alex

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #52 on: February 13, 2018, 11:58:36 AM »

Anyway, my thought was that the different categories each have a bunch of similar ships and then a few divergent ones. When it's under-the-hood stuff the oddballs don't matter so much as when the player sees "here's the ships in X, here's the ships in Y" and it cements the categories in their mind.

Yep, I hear you. I'd like to do the exact opposite, though, and point to the hulls - though being largely in current use by TT - as being something more general-purpose and not faction-tied. That said, there *are* a few TT-specific blueprints, just not all the general high-tech stuff.

So the loadouts are actually dynamically autofitted? Ooooooh. Sounds like another mod will be dying a most glorious death.

They are, yes, but there's always an opportunity to improve on what vanilla does.
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Inventor Raccoon

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #53 on: February 13, 2018, 12:08:43 PM »

O.K, a final guess - the new low-tech ship is the phase ship with a circular anchor that we saw in the latest [REDACTED] tweet.

Also, do non-player factions suffer from the random d-mods we do or do they still have all-flawless ships (apart from pirates and independents using premade (D) skins)?
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PCCL

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #54 on: February 13, 2018, 12:10:44 PM »

Quote
Hmm. Will have to see how it plays, but could see making mini-orders near instant, for example, if "ugh, waiting a month for a few extra weapons to slot in" became an issue.

Maybe a "rush-order" option that completes the construction at the minimum time but costs extra?
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mmm.... tartiflette

Alex

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #55 on: February 13, 2018, 12:18:01 PM »

O.K, a final guess - the new low-tech ship is the phase ship with a circular anchor that we saw in the latest [REDACTED] tweet.

Good work :)

Also, do non-player factions suffer from the random d-mods we do or do they still have all-flawless ships (apart from pirates and independents using premade (D) skins)?

They have d-mods too, yeah, based on the same factors - doctrine, nanoforges, etc. The d-mods are now shown on the fleet tooltip, so you can see what you're getting into as far as actual fleet strength.

Maybe a "rush-order" option that completes the construction at the minimum time but costs extra?

Right, yeah, that could be the way to go. Have to be careful that it's not a "be bored for 5 minutes or spend X credits" choice, though. Could work if time becomes important enough that waiting has a real, non-boredom cost as well.
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Goumindong

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #56 on: February 13, 2018, 12:45:53 PM »

And don't think I didn't see that teaser for a new low-tech toy...

Sharp! Now, can you identify what it is? I have complete confidence in your ability to do so

It’s a phase frigate.

Edit god damnit someone guessed it while I was eating
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zakastra

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #57 on: February 13, 2018, 12:46:30 PM »

Perhaps anything that is a small enough fraction of monthly production (say total purchases no greater than than 5%) are always available instantly, either as a case of being trivial to manufacture (HMG's, low complexity fighter LPC's) or ubiquitous to the point of spares always being on hand for requisition (Hounds and Buffalos). This would avoid waiting long periods for trivialities like filling that one weapon slot on your recovered flagship or picking up a quick replacement frigate whilst keeping the realism of waiting for a complex order of many weapons, or that spiffy new astral you ordered.
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Oh DRM, bane of the carrier captain...

Wyvern

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #58 on: February 13, 2018, 01:23:28 PM »

Right, yeah, that could be the way to go. Have to be careful that it's not a "be bored for 5 minutes or spend X credits" choice, though. Could work if time becomes important enough that waiting has a real, non-boredom cost as well.
This sounds like a good time to (re)suggest an option that lets the player wait at a colony - whether it's to let a pirate fleet go away, or just pass the time until their new flagship is finished building.
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Wyvern is 100% correct about the math.

Techhead

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Re: Blueprints, Doctrine, and Production
« Reply #59 on: February 13, 2018, 01:23:40 PM »

Some thoughts on Warships/Carriers/Phase Ships:

1. Can we say "I don't need any phase ships, gimme more other stuff" and set it a category to 0?

2. Ships like the Venture and Odyssey have fighters but aren't especially fighter-focused. Are they slotted into Warships or Carriers?

3. Warships feels like a huge category compared to the other two, but I also know it a hard thing to draw the line down the middle of. Best delineation I came up with was separating out support ships like that aren't really one-on-one fighters.

3a. Examples of ships that popped into my head when I was thinking of "Support" ships: Vigilance, Sunder, Buffalo Mk.II, Mudskipper Mk.II, Omen, Kite, Gryphon
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