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Starsector 0.95.1a is out! (12/10/21); Blog post: Uniquifying the Factions, Part 2 (04/30/22)

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Messages - Serenitis

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General Discussion / Re: terran worlds
« on: June 29, 2022, 07:00:39 AM »
Domain terraforming involved orbital mirrors/shades which are incredibly durable.
If any worlds you find don't have terraforming infrastucture then what you see is likely the 'natural' state of that world.

The useful exception to this being Asharu. As this world was previously terraformed to some extent, and then de-terraformed when the infrastructure was kicked out of orbit. So we don't actually know what either of it's previous states were (unless it turns up in lore), but we can still see the now rogue shade still in orbit of Corvus.

Asharu 'proves' that if the mirrors/shades were to be removed either deliberately or accidentally, the world beneath would revert, and change to a condition closer to it's original form.
So a terraformed Terran world could not remain Terran without that infrastucture.
Thus any Terran worlds you find in the sector which do not host orbital mirrors/shades are very likely not the product of terraforming.

Yes, I do spend an impressively wasteful amount of time contemplating planetary vandalism. (That's what terraforming is really, when you think about it.)

General Discussion / Re: How do you use battlecruisers properly?
« on: June 28, 2022, 11:51:05 PM »
If you turn any Conquests you find into a pile of supplies and scrap, is that symmetrical or non-symmetrical?
Asking a for a comrade.

Mods / Re: [0.95.1a] Animal Portrait Pack
« on: June 22, 2022, 02:10:34 AM »
Brb - modding Stars in Shadow to have Phidi in hardsuits.

A full production chain with all items used + a Tech Mine on all colonies will need a minimum of 4 planets.
  • A habitable world
  • A Gas Giant
  • A Toxic world
  • A Barren world
The Toxic wants organics because if organics are on the hab world you will need to drop the tech mine to fit mining in.
Thus Toxic needs to be 'hot' since organics don't get proc'd on cold ones.
There's only one kind of hab world that doesn't have any negative modifier: Terran.
So this precludes the hab world being Tundra for the cold condition, thus the cold world must be the Barren.

The Terran world industries:
  • Tech Mine
  • Farm
  • Commerce
  • Light Industry
The Gas Giant industries:
  • Tech Mine
  • Mining
  • Military
  • <free>
The Toxic world industries:
  • Tech Mine
  • Mining
  • Military
  • <free>
The Barren world industries:
  • Tech Mine
  • Refinery
  • Fuel
  • Heavy Industry

Terran gets nanites, holosuite, embryo and spool.
Barren gets forge, catalyst, synchro and fusion lamp. (Barren gets the industry b/c it will have lower haz, so will have less maint.)
Toxic gets bore and cryo.
Gas Giant gets dynamo and cryo.
The tap can go anywhere - stacking commerce on the Barren would be profitable tho.

So your "perfect" system might look something like:
- Gas Giant (Extreme Heat, +2 volatiles)
-- Toxic Moon (Extreme Heat, +3 both ores, +2 organics, +2 volatiles)
- Terran Planet (+2 farm, not any of: rare ore, volatiles)
-- Barren Moon (cold, resources irrelevant)

If you were to ditch the Tech Mine requirement for all worlds, you could lose the Toxic world entirely and move the mining to the barren (minerals) and terran (organics).
And your tech mining would be on the gas giant, but you'd lose a military base.

General Discussion / Re: Questions about colony enhancements
« on: June 22, 2022, 12:02:15 AM »
Is it possible to get all the colony enhancements in one run? (Soil Nanites, cryoengine, biofactory embro etc)
Frequently multiples as well if you explore enough.
All planetary ruins can give these - the larger the greater chance.
Abandoned Mining stations frequently give them, Research stations sometimes, and Habitats never.
Derelict motherships will often give items, and survey ships can sometimes also drop them.
It is also possible (although v. uncommon) to find items within abandoned ships - although these must be the ships that are 'generated' by the procgen, not the drifting ships that get left behind by battles.
You can also sometimes recover items from Remnant Nexus stations.

All of this randomly generated at the start of the game, and will be fixed for that entire game.
Is it possible to NOT get all the enhancements in one run?
Also yes.
Very likely confirmation bias on my part, but it sometimes feels like the game 'favours' one particular item to shower you with, while others remain elusive.
Can you get some of the enhancements from quests, bar missions etc?
There will be a character "with a paper book" lurking in a bar eventually, and they can offer such things for a price.
4 story points for the first one, 8 for the second, etc.

I liked robo-craft before it mutated into a MOBA.
Is that still going? I thought it died.
It used to be ace just not giving a single fudge about optimising, or whatever the newest trend/drama was, and just throwing some cubes together because it looks good.
Bombing around Mars in a DeLorean was super fun.

Suggestions / Re: Simplify intel tag order
« on: June 17, 2022, 05:58:11 AM »
The most irritating part of using the intel screen is (imo) the tags keep moving around, so it sometimes takes a while to find what I'm looking for.

Alphabetising and/or highlighting the important ones would go a long way to making it easier to use if the tags can't be locked in place.

Mods / Re: [0.95.1a] Terraforming and Station Construction (v8.1.3)
« on: June 16, 2022, 06:04:23 AM »
Oh, you can build it without actually needing any asteroids in the system? That's good.
It's a failsafe (of sorts).
More expensive than Ismara's Sling, but more flexible and always available.

Mods / Re: [0.95.1a] Terraforming and Station Construction (v8.1.3)
« on: June 16, 2022, 01:22:04 AM »
Will there ever be a way to get water in systems without a water source? A slow and inefficient nebula condenser, maybe?
Asteroid processing built on a station will do this.

Suggestions / Re: Buff HBL for the next release
« on: June 15, 2022, 03:11:32 AM »
What if instead of giving the H. Burst more firepower, it didn't 'overkill' things?
Give the weapon a feedback 'sense' (like a battery charge circuit), so it knows if the target it hits doesn't use a full charge worth of damage.
One shot uses 1 ammo if it hits but doesn't kill the target. If the shot hits and kills the target, any weapon damage in excess of the targets HP is returned to the weapon as a fractional charge.

That way it's no better than current for attacking ships, but it could shoot multiple missiles on a single ammo charge.

Bug Reports & Support / Re: Gad can spawn immicial biosphere
« on: June 14, 2022, 03:12:15 AM »
Fairly sure this is not a bug.

There are 3 different kinds of planet in the game:
  • Fixed planets - Always appear, always have the same conditions and are the same type every game
  • Semi-Random - Always appear and are always the same type, but have different conditions in every new game
  • Random - Aren't guaranteed to appear, can be any type and have different conditions in every new game

Gad is part of group 2. As are many of the uninhabited planets in the core.
If you start a new game and check Gad, you'll see that it will have a different set of conditions.

Suggestions / Re: Add more escort-only fighters
« on: June 13, 2022, 11:51:34 PM »
There's 3 so far unused 'escort' fighter sprites in the graphics folder, that look like variations of the same craft. (Original, Indie modified and Pirate modified?)
Maybe those could be given a quick beauty pass and used as the base for some new support LPCs?

Suggestions / Re: Place the Red Planet quest earlier in the game
« on: June 13, 2022, 11:31:38 PM »
I almost always just end up clearing the planet by finding it because the only way to start this quest is to trawl bars to find the spacer.
Which is something I just don't do with any kind of regularity. (No bars in the outer reaches.)

Maybe have some kind of recoverable intel be found in a derelict or salvage pile that points the player toward wherever the spacer gets put.

Definitely wouldn't hurt to make the player aware earlier though.

Blog Posts / Re: Uniquifying the Factions, Part 2
« on: June 11, 2022, 07:37:20 AM »
After taking some time to (finally) read though this thread, I can conclude that it's ride and a half.
I have only a single thing to add:

I like the idea as proposed. It's a neat intersection of lore, mechanics and political awareness.

Suggestions / Faction Hostilities
« on: June 09, 2022, 03:46:52 AM »
It would be nice if factions would behave a little more proactively when they fall out.
As it is currently they do little else other than lazily swipe at passing fleets like a bored cat who is completely uninterested in chasing the "toy".

I would like to suggest that "hostilities" be broken up into three discrete stages, each with its own behaviour and goals.
With each subsequent stage having a chance to be entered after <x> amount of time in the previous stage has been passed.
Some "events" will be low-level and never progress beyond the first stage, but others may go further as the rng dictates.

Stage 1: Tensions
This would be the same as currently exists. The factions take no specific action against each other, but thier respective fleets will try to engage thier opponents if they're nearby and feel like they can win.
Nothing really exciting happens - it's just background noise plus a few extra debris fields.

Stage 2: Escalation
The respective factions will start to spawn small and medium sized fleets which they will then send out to thier opponents territory to "cause trouble".
This will take the form of controlling infrastructure (if available), attacking smaller patrols, and disrupting trade fleets.
These "aggressor" fleets will try to stay away from large defence fleets and stations.

Stage 3: Conflict
In addition to Stage 2 activities the factions now start creating larger fleets, whose sole purpose is to disprupt thier opponent's orbital support structures.
Aka - destroy stations.
If successful, these fleets will try to "hold" the system and attack any opposing fleets until they're recalled or driven off.

If the player is commissioned with one of these involved factions, they may be tasked with activites based on thier faction reputation, level/skills and general fleet compostion.
Whether this would be a summons to report to a particular place to recieve orders, or those orders being sent directly is something to consider. (Possibly could be both - let the rng pick which method is used for variety.)
There could also be the opportunity to have faction contacts provide a means for the player to request specific activities to participate in if they so choose.

It may be worth also considering applying a condition to systems affected by stages 2 & 3 similar to the pirate raid malus that gets applied when hostile fleets show up, and removed once hostilities end.
At no point during any stage will any permanent effects be created. No territory will change hands. This is all entertaining, yet transitory fluff because Starsector is not a 4x.

And while it would be fun/interesting if these fleets were to disrupt facilities on thier opponents colonies as well, that would stray into permanent territory as core colonies are fragile little snowflakes who will already be struggling with the loss of trade fleets.
To this end it might be worth looking at giving npc/core colonies a bit of extra leeway with respect to resource shortages so they don't decivilise quite so readily.
(This would be useful in it's own right tbh.)

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