Raiding for Fun and Profit

I’d started out trying to add a story point option that would, to quote my TODO list, “make ground raids more of an early-game activity the player can engage in”. Some time later, I ended up with a total revamp of the ground-raid system, and no story point option. I promise, I can explain!

(If you’re unfamiliar with story points, see this blog post. In brief, they’re limited “do cool things” points that you’ll gain as you level up. Both the points and the cool things to spend them on will be in the next release.)

Now then, back to how this happened. Story points are not an end unto themselves – the goal of the TODO item was, after all, entirely about ground raids in the early game; story points were just a possible way to do it. So, the first thing I’d tried was letting the player use a story point to stage a “surprise” raid, with higher effectiveness. This means you don’t need as many marines to accomplish something useful, which in turn means you can do it earlier in the game. Technically correct (the best kind!), but also, doesn’t hold up.
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Skills and Story Points

I’ve wanted to update the skill system for a while, but that’s part of the challenge with early-access style development – if you update something too early, you might have to update it again, when yet more things change and make that part not-quite-fit once more. With how many parts of the game the skill systems has tendrils into, it wasn’t something I wanted to do more than once.

Now, finally, the game is in a place where I can do that – I’ve got a good overview of what I actually want from the skill system, the number of unknowns is low, and most of the unknowns are probably known.

(Please note – some of the graphics and text in the screenshots to follow are placeholders.)

So, what are the goals of the skill overhaul? First and foremost, the skill system should increase the replay value of the game – that is, depending on what skills are picked, the player should be able to explore new ways to play the game.
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Starsector 0.9.1a Release

Update (05/20/19): a hotfix for an issue causing no salvage to be generated after some fights and a few other issues is out, please re-download using the links below.

Update (05/17/19): a new release fixing a few relatively minor issues is out, please re-download using the links below.

Starsector version 0.9.1a is now out! This is mostly a bugfixing-and-polish release, though there is also some new content and a few new mechanics.

  • Rebalanced colony progression so it’s both not as demanding of constant attention and doesn’t immediately catapult the player into the endgame
  • Improvements to ship AI, in particular escort behavior is much better (see here) and carrier survivability is much greater
  • Two new capital ships, used by the pirate and Pather factions, and a new pirate skin for the Shrike
  • A “randomized start” option
  • Various quality-of-life improvments (can set speed-up time to be a toggle, etc)
  • Reworked high-end fleet spawning – generates more large ships, and fewer ships overall, instead of just a larger number of ships
  • Large fleets can now disengage without being pursued if they can deal enough damage in a pitched battle first, even if they lose it
  • Added ambient sound track when visiting a portside bar
  • Assorted combat balance tweaks
  • Many bugfixes and modding-related improvements

The new version should be save-compatible, although some mods may require a few adjustments to work.

The full patch notes, and the comment thread, are here. You can download the new version here:

(Alternate download links: Windows Mac Linux)

As always, thank you for your support!



Starsector 0.9a Release

Update (11/20/18, 1:25pm EST): hotfix for lack of supplies in tutorial, expeditions staying in system after failed raid, and a few other issues.

Update (11/17/18, 3:20pm EST): hotfix for occasional “random” crash while flying around, and an ability-bar-switching related crash.

Update (11/16/18, 7:35pm EST): hotfix for crash on 32-bit Windows, weapon disabled damage sound effects/visuals/floating text not showing up, and occasional game load issue.

Starsector version 0.9a is now out! Here are some of the new things you can do in this release:

  • Establish colonies! Build up industrial production to make a profit, improve your colonies, and protect them from many dangers
  • Visit a portside bar to find missions and other opportunities
  • Fight alongside – or against – massive orbital stations
  • Create your own faction and set up its military doctrine
  • Find blueprints and use them to let your colonies produce ships, weapons, and fighters
  • Face enemy ships with dynamically generated weapon loadouts
  • Discover new dangers and derelicts on the fringes of the Sector
  • Explore planetary ruins
  • Raid core worlds for plunder or to disrupt your competition

In addition, there are a ton of UI improvements, improvements to ship AI, combat balance changes, and  all sorts of miscellaneous fixes, improvements, and bits of new content.

The full patch notes, and the comment thread, are here. You can download the new version here:

(Alternate download links: Windows Mac Linux)

As always, thank you for your support!



Portrait Hegemonization


Guide to the Wear and Appearance of Uniforms and Insignia 

Revision Date pc205.03.20 // by Order of the Ministry of Naval Logistics

“Re-issue of uniform standards document has been ordered to all Hegemony personnel in the Naraka Strategic District due to statistically significant increase in lapse of uniform discipline incidents.”

“Officers are directed to review implementation procedures described herein and are reminded that any deviation from standard uniform to be authorized in written waiver only by commanding officer rank O-6 or superior.”

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