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Starsector 0.97a is out! (02/02/24); New blog post: Planet Search Overhaul (07/13/24)

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Messages - Falcon_BR

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General Discussion / Re: Vapourware?
« on: March 04, 2022, 06:57:55 AM »
As a dev, it's generally a bad idea to respond to threads like this, but... (here we go!)

Disclaimer first: these opinions are my own, not those of Alex or Fractal Softworks, Inc. etc.

I think the guys working on it...

If you are unsure about some aspect of development, you can ask. You can do it on this forum, on Twitter, or via email. If you ask in good faith, it's very likely you'll get a good faith answer. Please, don't just say answers you think feel right. When someone else reads it and repeats it elsewhere like its truth it becomes a big pain to get correct information out.

To address your points directly: Alex works on this game full-time. It is his job. I work on it part-time, alongside a couple other indie game projects. I am a contractor.

The feature milestone list is here by the way, and I concede that it is very abstract. The last remaining point is basically "add a story you can finish". We're doing that. (And much more.)

I've got some general statements and thoughts on indie game dev publicity; please understand that these _my_ perspective rather than Alex's.

This is a job I did at Gaslamp Games. Sometimes it was fun, sometimes it was awful. Depending on the project and release schedule I could spend from 10% to 90% of my work-time doing PR/marketing stuff. In a small company, that adds up fast, and quickly begs the question of "do you want to be marketed to or do you want the game to be worked on?"

Publicly released milestones are marketing, not necessarily indicative of the actual state of affairs or of useful work that is done or will be done. Further, it increases risk to a project to release speculative plans because these are commonly interpreted by customers as a set-in-stone promise to deliver precisely described features. If those features turn out to be unfeasible for some reason the developer has to put PR time (costing development time) into explaining exactly why and doing emotional labour to make sure the news doesn't hurt community support for the project. Or the developer can martyr themselves by pursuing an infeasible features-set that lowers the quality of the product, their working-life, and risks burnout and bankruptcy (I ended up in something vaguely including all of this and it was hell. The high-communication indie dev marketing strategy wasn't the only or even key reason for failure, but it didn't help).

Backing up:
Alex's approach is to announces features after they're finished. There's no risk of failure! It does take a long time, however. And unfortunately this does not work very well with story features and secret content that can be spoiled. Like if we do a blog post detailing the end-game content, that somewhat ruins the fun doesn't it? In short, most of the really exciting stuff we're working on can't be talked about if we want to maximize player enjoyment of the game. There's other stuff happening too, but it'll necessarily entail finished chunks being revealed on a slower schedule from an outside perspective.

So the question I would ask is, do you like what you've gotten out of the process so far? There's proof that it's been - yes, slowly - delivering for, uh, something like 10 years. It's totally fine to take a break and pick up the game later; if you put your email on the email list you'll get a notice when the next update is released.

And if there is something you would like to know about development, all you have to do is ask. Maybe you won't get an answer, but maybe you will.

Thanks for this, I already love the game, but this community is great!

Figured out the problem, the java 8 28X and newer will not run in a java program compiled prior to their release, to the game would need to be compiled again on the new compiler.
Downlading the java 8 271 from java website and placed on the game folder, it runs perfectly, of course I backup my saves, so I will try to find where cames the savegame corruption.

General Discussion / Re: Commissions
« on: March 03, 2022, 10:27:53 AM »
Maybe this has been addressed in the past, if so, I apologize.

Are commissions just supposed to be an "easy mode"? I'll be honest, I've never played with them before, but the Nex mod said that the no commission start was very hard, plus free Doom with the TT start, I figured I might as well.

As far as I can tell, I just get an extra 50k per month with no strings attached, except for forced diplomacy changes. No expectation of helping out my faction, no minimum kills or whatever. They just pay me to fly their flag.

Shouldn't there be some requirement alongside the commission? Something like destroying at least one enemy ship, or engaging in combat with enemies every few months minimum would make sense. Or a minimum size colony that has the accessibility to provide certain goods, like those occasional bar missions?

As of right now, commissions seem like a no strings attached cash infusion. This doesn't really make sense to me, unless it's supposed to be a beginner friendly way to get into the game...which could be accomplished by raising the Galatia stipend for easy mode.

I'd personally agree with you that it's an easy mode. Like you said, basically collect a check with little effort. I've done a full playthrough of the story commissioned to hegemony and I don't think it ever affected me negatively. Just turn off your transponder and there goe most of the drawbacks

It was a great income, I must agree with that, but it was an annoyance getting attack by everyone when the hegemeny declared war against everyone, also, you have a reputation hit, even if you don't fight in the war, I think it is a -20, and after a while, I was -50 against the ludd church, without doing anything, just constant wars declarations, it was fixed by donating 50 gamma cores.

General Discussion / Re: bug? looting a hypershunt?
« on: March 03, 2022, 10:09:50 AM »
I just reported that bug and it is already confirmed.
Hypershunt and cryo sleepers are target to XXXX intel blueprint quest, it is fixed on the next version, but any released version of the game with that quest,, this bug will happen, I had like 10 people pointing the same cryo sleep to have and XVI blueprint, the only way I found to fix it, was to steal the blueprint from the hegemony, using 4k mariners, and a single story point to not be detected.

General Discussion / Writing Java version change guide, please help!
« on: March 03, 2022, 10:04:05 AM »
Hi, I am writing a guide to change the java version of the game, but all guides I find on the internet, are:
Download this jre from my drive...
Well, you need to really trust strangers to download softwares from other people drive, but I downloaded it anyway.
It was java 8 version 271
Checked the version on my computer and it is java 8 version 321.
Downladed the Jre (Java SE Runtime Environment) from oracle, version 8 321.
Discovered it is the same I already had on my PC, so I could had just copied it to the game folder or better, just edit the vmparams file to point to my java install location. Thinking about writing a path command or a .bat file to the game for people wanting to chance or revert java version in one click.

Now, the problem... My game runs fine with the downloaded java 8 version 271 from someone drive, but it doesn't work with the java 8 321 from the oracle website! Even tried the java 8 271 from oracle archive download and it doesn't work too!
I already check the game option and run in any java version it set to true for default!
I really don't know it you need to edit something on your java folder to make the game run, the folders from 271 is almost the same as 321, so it you need to edit something, it is not clear to me.

And checking this Survey people runs the game in 4 different java versions in the game!

I used to program in java, 10 years ago, in java 7, I was going to debug the game in java 8 to check why the savegame corruption happens and why it happens, playing the game in 7 and 8 in the same time to see what is going on wrongly in java 8.

I also want to write a guide to easy change the java version of the game, when I figure out what I am doing wrongly. Can you guys give me some help?

Dude, I had problems like that, so I keep exploring to find the perfect system, but it was impossible, I had one with 4 habitable planets on it! I was about to colonize them, one already with pollution, so it was going to be the heavy industry one.
So, I didn't really need the 10 volates production, but without the fuel prodution, they were ok, not great, but ok, I could have gone with them, all with 125-150 hab.
Also found one with a arid with 125 hab, no trans, a cold one with +3/+2/+2 rare, com, vol, and a no atmosfere one, so fuel they were also ok to colonize, with a crioship on the system and a hypershunt close by.
Still ok, but I said to myself, keep looking, found one with all planets with poor resources, -1/0 or -1/-1, an water one with trans, and 0 food, a arid one with -1 food, and I said for my self, men, this system is garbage, the only good think is the gate, it is resource poor, the gas giant is 300%, no way it is going to turn a profit!

After exploring all the planets, guest what, the last system was the best one, you really don't need a +3/+3 resource, just enough to feed your refining, the one with -1/-1 was not habitable, so with the drill and administration it was producing more them enough.
The cold one I placed the lamp, just to discorery that until it reachs size 6, it can't sustain itself! This costed me a lot of money, but when I was finally figured out I could place a gamma core on pop to decrease the cost to 9, took me lots of money.
With a single no-at planet I have 36% of the fuel market, more them that and everyone would start attacking me, this happens with everything! Just because I had 5 planets in this system, I  could have 2 of all industries, just one with fuel, This gives me a 450.000 GMP, down to 300.000 after paying salaries.
So, you don't need great planets, I was really said I couldn't use the soil nanites on the water planet, and just had a single no at one, also the hypershunt is 12 of distance, so, no extra industry, but doing the math, 10 volates is hard to get, but 10 trans is almost impossible! You need story point and a gamma core on it! And my colonies are far away from the center, so my colonies lost a lot of shipments, that I normally have stockpile to cover it, even with everything produced locally, the game makes you have shortages from deliveries from other systems, it is a strange game mechanic, you should lost profit from not delivering, not don't receiving goods locally produced.

My point is, don't try to find the perfect system, I see people here with 2 50% habitable planets with the same system, but for what? You need colonies to give you profit and the profit will be high only before you can self sustain, so cost goes down 50% I really don't think I can spend more them 450.000 upkeep in a month, even with an armada that can take down the sector. I was unluck, there is not a single 100% or less habitable planet (unclaimed) on my sector, but I really don't need it.

General Discussion / Re: Beginner looking for tips
« on: March 02, 2022, 08:13:38 AM »
I wouldnt even say fighting normal fleets is profitable.
With the Salvaging skill and a Salvage Rig in the fleet, I usually find fighting normal fleets in-system is long-term profitable (ie profitable once I cash in the weapons/LPCs/Modspecs and metals I get as loot) unless I really screw up the fight and have to salvage a few ships. As long as you're bringing good ships and pilots and mostly taking CR and armor damage and only losing at most a couple of escort frigates, it's pretty easy to stay in the black.  On Easy difficulty, it's nearly guaranteed.

This is something that took me a while to understand, on the actual patch, fighting without salvage rigs, without the salgaving skill, and on normal difficulty, you will probably lose money, the best way is to do it on systems with a bounty and with a commission. This doesn't happens on easy difficulty.

General Discussion / Re: Vapourware?
« on: March 02, 2022, 07:22:19 AM »
I don't think you are on the same page that everyone else is.

Ok, the sandbox is kind of ready, the developers are working on the other parts of the game right now.
After we finish the main quest, finish exploring, starting colonizing, so what now? Yes, it can take 40 hours to complete that, but sandbox story focuses games, like rimworld, the story would continue until you reach what you consider the end of the game, escaping for the planet, killing all enemies, controling the empire, it is your decision, but we still don't have an endgame goal on starsector, we can just glass everyone so they stop raiding you and recolonizing the planets with AI cores, and that is it.

So, if you want a sandbox, the game is ready, but I don't believe this is the goal, and I love to play it again once a year when the game get a huge update.
I did chat with Tynan (rimworld developer) and the rest of the community a lot, and I love when he respond to my and other members suggestions, I am still hated for some people for proposing the game to migrate to 64 bits only, because BF3 was 64 bits only and it was 5 years older, and nobody complained about it! Tynan always said the same, we don't need more them 3 gigas of memory to play rimworld, and I proved him that if I am, like a lot of community members that install +100 mods, we can easily reach the end of the memory, so he accepted and now rimworld is 64 bits only.

I am kind of new here, so I don't know how is the community evolved in the development of this game, but in rimworld, QoL mods were incorporated every single new release, I can't believe I need a mod to use the move all items to storage, also, why we don't have a folder with custom portraits? Maybe with subfolders for each faction, it is not hard to do it, if we have a github if the code, I can do it in 2 hours max.

General Discussion / Re: Beginner looking for tips
« on: March 01, 2022, 08:28:33 AM »
My first advice, YOU NEED SUPPORT SHIPS! Tankers and cargo ships! You said you don't have enough ships to carry fuel and stuff, just place cargo and fuel ships in your fleet! in the start I had 3-5 colossus on my fleet to carry loot to sell, and 2-3 fuel carrying ships, also 2 salvage rigs! You will need a starliner to carry crew to colonize planets. You should have around 25 ships with you all the time, 15 combat, 10 non combat and with space to look new ones. Story unused ships in abandoned stations for free and get them when you need it! Insulted engines and improved manutention in the big ones, always check what are giving away your signature, normally big civilian ships need insulated engines, but if you have capitals, small civilian ships don't need to insulate. Get insulated capital cargos and tankers when you are rich.
NEVER, EVER militarize civilian ships, they will lose all the bonuses they get from the industry skill, just insulate engines.

My colony guide:
Have 20 million in the bank, not hard if you have a commission and is doing contact quests and bounty hunting, selling 6k fuel to the pirates on Umbra each week buying it from the Sindact capital on the SAME SYSTEM, will give you 300.000 each week.

Scout all places, try to find a system with:
In order of importance:
One or two habitable planets with a farmland, it can have a -1 farm, if it has no transplutronics resource. because soil nanites will compensate for that, you can even colonize a -1 farm, because you only need food = pop to sustain your colonies the +1 from the administrator or your skill will compensate the -1.
One planet with no atmosphere. For refining and fuel production.
One planet with +0 organics, so you can sustain your light industries and planets with that are not habitable (they demand organics and food to live there).
One gas giant with plentiful volates +2 production, need to be a gas giant because of the item to improve production, it can't be a +2 volates ice world, because it you can't use the improved item.
You can go with a +2 volates (no gas giant) if you don't plan to use the item to compensate cold and poor light worlds, or 0 volates gas giant. But they are normally cold planets so, what the point?

Habitability WILL hurt a lot during the early phases, because the 50.000 hazard pay to make the colony grow, but they are not really and issue in the end, my planets are 125, 150, 200, 225 (down from 300) and 250, all give a 100.000 profit, just the 250 one won't, just 30.000 but I wanted to have 2 very hot planets to have a really big defense force.

First I had to clean the system from the REDACTED, just wait when they leave the nexus unguarded and kill it, don't do it in all system, because you need some systems with nexus for REDACTED farming for alpha cores, that was a mistake I did on my first game.

My colonization plan:
First world, water 150%
-1 trans (so no soil nanite to improve farming), 0 ore, 0 food (normal on water world). +2 organics (my only organic source), but it have a solar shade that increase farming +2.
Colonized with 2000 food, 2000 supplies, 2000 fuel, hazard pay, to sustain the colony for 15 days before the starport goes online. This stockpile is optional, it is better just don't pay the hazard pay and wait that 15 days, before start paying it, because your colony can't decrease of size, I do it for roleplay proposes.
Queue the farm, ground batteries (+1 stability), patrol station (+1 sta), starbase (+1 sta), waystation (+20 accesibillity), and upgrade the starport to megaport as soon as the starport gets completed, accesibillity and stability gives you a lots of grown bonuses and extra money, so, build all infrastructure buildings in all planets, just not the planetary shield.

On the same time I colonized the no atmosphere, very hot planet (200 hab). Did it too early, should have waited the water planet to get lvl 4 so I could mine the organics that the planet need for upkeep, so it costs lots of money, plus the +50k hazard upkeep on it. Started refining on it, to pay part of its upkeep importing the ores, next was the fuel production, both need a no atmosphere planet, but I wasn't using the items until they all got size 5.

As soon as the water planet reached size 4 and started mining organics, colonized the arid world (125 hab), and build a light industry, wait for the stability buildinds to get online and freeport on it! Freeport are great, but remember to build your defenses, people will attack it, but because you have 3 patrol hq and a station on that planet, the first attacks will be easy to defend. This will be your first planet to reach size 6 (maximum size) and your first profitable one, because of drugs.

I didn't want to to deal with panthers, so all my items to improve the mining, refining, fuel, orbital lamp and the light industry were not in use until they were all size 5.

Colonized the gas giant with +2 volates, (300 hab) and now I really started losing money, but in the end it is my most profitable colony, because the orbital lamp decrease the habitability to 225, that is acceptable. Too bad I installed it when it was size 4 and couldn't pay for itself. Took me a while to install a gamma core in the pop infra so it could pay itself.

Also colonized a very hot light atmosphere for defense propuses (very hot planets are where your big defense fleets come from).

In the end
All planets have all infra builds, and the freeports one got shields.
All planets I use 2 story point to improve the mega ports.
All planets have tier 3 low tech space station. (personal preference, hate the midline (it was greatlly improved in the patch, but still hate it) and think the soft flux of the high tech one is bad)

Water 150 Freeport
Megaport (item to improve acess)
Farm - mining - light industry (item to improve) - HQ
106.000 profit

No atmosphere very hot 200
Refining (item to imp), Fuel (item to improve), HQ (Item to improve) - commerce.
120.000 profit

Desert (125) Freeport
Light industry (item to improve) - Farm (item to improve, so the -1 is a +2 like the water world with the solar shade), refining (because it had a free slot), and HQ
110.000 profit

Gas giant (225, down from 300)
Pop (orbital lamp) gamma core
Mining (improved item volates), commerce (item to improve), Heavy (syncron core), HQ
99.000 profit

Left over very hot planet 225 (colonized it because you can have 5 planets without using AI, 2 for you + 3 admins)
Pop (gamma core)
Mining (item to improve, so -1/0 goes +2/+3), Commerce (it almost don't pay for itself, trying to find the improvement), Heavy industry (sync core), HQ (Improved)
20.000 profit. Almost don't pays the administrator on it, but existis to defend the other planets.

With 3 HQs and 2 very hot Improved HQs I fear no one, and paying the upkeep of my admins, 4000 crew and 1500 mariners, I still profit 300k a month.
Control around 33% of all markets only improved all megaports with 2 story points each.

I do have a hypershunt close and 3 itens to use it, but I don't use them, because I would need to spend 4 story points to improve the no atm refining, an alpha core in the refining and a gamma core in all pop infrastructure using them, and any trade disruption in the colony, something that happens a lot, would hinder all other industries on the planet, but I really don't think it is worth it.

Having lots of colonies in the same system, improve access that you lose to be far from the core, all my colonies have around 150% access, freeports one have more, hight gravity have less, and if I remove the waystatons (tested that), the decreased access makes me lose more them double the costs of the waystation upkeep.

Also the system had no stable points, just create 2 with alpha cores and fuel. Build the +1 stabilty and the +2 mov.

General Discussion / Re: Commissions
« on: March 01, 2022, 06:49:45 AM »
I tried once a no commission game.
It was impossible, after the starting money ends, you can't pay for your ships monthly upkeep while exploring, it was doing bounty after bounty and no fun!

New game, got an hegemogy comission, got some XVI ships really cheap from contacts, doing the main quest, hegemony declared total war against everyone, it was a real pain in the ass, after so many wars, my stance was -50 with everyone, thanks hegemony!

This really hurted me when I started colonizing, really bad access because of hostile factions, took me lots and lots of bounties to make my colonies profitable, and after resigning the commission, lost 20 millions before my colonies started to sustain themselves.

I am also in an AI free game, so I don't need to deal with constant hegemony inspections, just one gamma core in pop of an cold and dark planet, so I am able to pay that 10 volates upkeep, took me a while before figuring out how to pay that much of upkeep, not using hypershunt because that would require an alpha core in the refinery and a game core in the pop, and 4 story points to improve the industry and a single distuption in the lines, would hurt all industries on the planet, not just the new one from the hypershunt, so it is no viable in this build.

General Discussion / Re: question about d-mods and which to remove?
« on: March 01, 2022, 06:37:32 AM »
Lots of people are saying here that Dmods are bad.
But when I see people playing on youtube, d-mods build rule this game.
With the skill that decrease deployment costs and maintenance cost with d-mods, even a increase maintenance dmod is ok, because it will almost cancel itself, with 3 more, the ship will almost be maintenance free.
The real point here is the deployment cost reduction, 2 Paragons with 5 dmods and 30 deployment cost, are more effective them a single paragon with a 60 deployment cost!
But I have a TOC and I normally go for hull restoration, but it will not remove ill modfication d-mod, you must restore the ship to remove that, there is also another on that it doesn't remove, but I can't remember right now.

General Discussion / Re: Autofire and AI
« on: March 01, 2022, 06:29:34 AM »
I am playing this game since "hey hey people" reviewed it, on day one, and this was also confusing to me.
Just registered on this official forum and I am reading the pinned topics, one is just about that.
In short, Ai doesn't care it the weapon is in autoshot or not, if you switch controls to na AI controlled ship, all weapons with autofire will be turned off, just the PD ones will be on autofire.
The ai will shot all groups, even at the same time, if he has enough free flux for that. But the AI will NOT alpha strike!
After reading the pinned threat, now I know that the AI will not fire a group with it costs more them 50% of the available flux pool, so, placing all antimatter blaster on a single group and linked fire, will not work, because there is not enough flux for them to fire it.
So, for AI SHIPS, if one group uses more them 30% of the total flux pool, like a Radiant with 5 tachyon lances (something I did), it is better to split up in 2 or 3 groups those tachyon lances, so it shots alternating.

Bug Reports & Support / Re: XXXXX Blueprint Intel, impossible to find it!
« on: February 28, 2022, 02:17:23 PM »
Thank you for the reports!

Did the system have a cryosleeper in it? There's a bug (fixed in dev) where the cryosleeper can be picked as a target for blueprint missions but can't actually be salvaged.

Yes, in both of them!

Bug Reports & Support / Re: XXXXX Blueprint Intel, impossible to find it!
« on: February 27, 2022, 09:22:54 AM »
I also stopped receiving exploration quests, I don't know why, I did survey all planets, but after using the devmode I was able to find some undiscovered weapons cache in other systems, so I don't know what triggers the end of explorations quest if there are still valid targets to them

Bug Reports & Support / Re: XXXXX Blueprint Intel, impossible to find it!
« on: February 26, 2022, 09:11:30 PM »

Removed some mods, so you can use this save without any mod and it will work.

But the bug is getting worst on my save, there are now 3 different blueprints in the same system that it is empty! 7 Blueprints quest with no blueprint to find.

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