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Starsector 0.95.1a is out! (12/10/21); Blog post: Hyperspace Topography (10/12/22)

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Messages - David

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Blog Posts / Re: The Pilgrim's Path
« on: July 24, 2022, 05:40:59 AM »
Alright guys, let's cool it down. Let me try out the mod voice:

1. This isn't a place to discuss what group is more pious than what other based on their architecture, or what their religion means. Please don't do this.
2. We (the devs) both don't wish to be addressed with a disrespectful tone - I think that's clear - but we also don't need pitchforks coming out to self-police here. We'll handle it through moderation from here.
3. Talking about cool religious architecture and speculating about it in a scifi context is good and really interesting! Again, just don't go attacking RL groups while doing it.
4. You are allowed to object to my artistic choices. I ask that you do so respectfully, and with the understanding that I might not listen and might not wish to take the time to respond. The only one I really owe answers to is Alex - and he owes answers only to himself, so don't feel you should bother him overmuch either.

TLDR: kindly drop the back-and-forth accusations and keep it on-topic.

FWIW I guess I should be happy that people are so, ah, passionate about the subject!

Blog Posts / Re: The Pilgrim's Path
« on: July 21, 2022, 04:50:23 PM »
Might be better to add a bank somewhere in the background that's printing money to continue old Domain economic policies, and the other factions are tolerating it because that continues the status quo.

(Ooh, I was toying with the bank idea purely in my head a few years back. It was going to be called "The Human Trust" or something along those lines for maximum ironic set-ups, but it just kept coming back to being a bit too esoteric for this kind of game.

Similarly, what the heck is a "credit"? Fans have called it "space bitcoin", but... credits are actually useful and stable. I'm not answering anything at all besides "scifi money".)

Blog Posts / Re: The Pilgrim's Path
« on: July 21, 2022, 01:59:45 PM »
For a person that usually doesn't care much about lore posts, this was very interesting. I really like where the game is going, having a world where each corner of the sector has a unique feel to it.

Well, thank you!

Oh, a quick question, David: Can the more overlooked Independent worlds like Eldfell or Cethlenn expect some uniquification identity upgrade, too? Being Independent is a downgrade in appeal by itself, but colonies like Nomios and Maxios manage to leverage the faction theme to feel peerlessly unique. Agreus got its little spotlight in the Gate campaing; can we expect more of these in the future?

Ah, answering is outside the scope of this blog post. (But, ahem, the logical conclusion of the approach thus far described is to emphasize unique interests of various underserved locations.)

Mayasura is the one that got "colony dropped" not long before the game start, right?

I want to say yes to troll everyone, but no.

Though I do wish more about how the politics work got more detail.  It kinda sounds like the Persean Sector almost still operates as a polity under Domain law?  Maybe the courts operating in different star systems still use the same body of law, but interpret it differently?  Because while the Hegemony is fine as just an army, how a corporation exists without a government to define it boggles the mind (a corporation is literally a limited legal exemption from liability if you spend money how government tells you).

Yeah, my model is (perhaps obviously) the post-Roman Empire. Everyone appeals to (or against) a formerly shared source of legitimacy (or illegitimacy) but is starting to drift in their own directions.

(What's a corporation whose 'parent' state has withered away? Maybe just another state with a peculiar theory of legitimacy and rights/responsibilities that probably resembles feudalism in some way? Just speculating off the cuff here; talking about Tri-Tachyon is, alas, outside the scope of what I want to get into here ... )

I dislike the high elf architecture, the luddics are meant to be highly pious and humble, not these extravagant high towers and ***.
Luddics have so much potential please do not *** this up so bad

Hi! Welcome to the forums.

While I think there is a compelling point at the core of your post, you've managed to botch it by coming off as a huge jerk in how you've said it. Please take a moment to review the forum rules, particularly the first rule. If you want to persuade people of anything through writing you are going to have to seriously re-think how you're expressing your thoughts here.

I'm feeling charitable today, so here's a reply: I think there's an argument to be made for the architectural style of "solarpunk-gothic", but I actually don't love that a lot of people immediately think "Rivendell", so... I'll think about how to better visually express what I'm going for.

Blog Posts / Re: The Pilgrim's Path
« on: July 20, 2022, 05:39:22 AM »
I really enjoyed the blog post. I've always been fascinated by advanced civilizations and their relationship with religion especially ones where the ramifications of faith are really explored.

Thanks! And same, particularly as I get older. I wasn't raised with any kind of religion so it's always been strange, and my attitudes when much younger were self-assured and highly dismissive, which I think is common among young science fiction fans. I mean sure, it's easy to write deluded people who believe crazy things very shallowly (and tbh these can be found just about everywhere), but doing something that takes itself more seriously? It's a fascinating intellectual and, like, sympathetic challenge.

What I appreciate about the Church in Starsector is that it's not the joke faction (that belongs to the Diktat and there was weeping and gnashing of teeth...:))

(Well: huge disagree in terms of what I/we are actually doing. But people have built up this idea so much with the Diktat that there's no point in talking about it anymore. So: the game will speak for itself!)

Fascinating stuff. Though, I have to ask... "look out for cliffracers"?

Morrowind. *thousand yard stare*

One thing I've idly thought about re. Luddics is how different persons in the faith might react to meeting an AI character in a social context or similar (there's a few such characters in the modiverse, I wrote one of them). Could they hold a civil conversation with it? Would they be metaphorically warding off the demon every half-minute, or start hurling accusations of various evils? Would they try to destroy it immediately after, assuming they possessed the means to do so?

The setting rather demands that question, doesn't it?

I like it, can't wait for the release btw :)

Thanks, same :D

Blog Posts / Re: The Pilgrim's Path
« on: July 19, 2022, 04:43:42 PM »
Honestly the Luddites might seem totally at odds with science fiction and generally everything that a person, or player, might want. But from my own life as I have gotten older I find the ideals and concepts of not wanting to accept every little new bit of technology as fast as it can be made to be more and more alluring. Or perhaps I simply missed the train to the front?

Yeah, I hear you on all of that. I mean, I grew up reading a ton of science fiction, in the 90's, in Silicon Valley. Technology was obviously the best and would make everything the best! Hasn't quite panned out that way, so I really feel the critical side of all of that much more. (Another example: Kim Stanley Robinson's novel "Aurora" isn't what we want, but it might be what we need.)

But then, of course, you get around to the fact that abandoning much of this sort of thing would lend a lot more proportional power to terraformed or naturally-terran-climate worlds like Gilead, and how that'd just so happen to give the ruling bodies of worlds like that more influence and power...

*ruling bodies gain more power within bounds set by their own ideology* "Oh weird."

And I'm just dying to know how Mazalot Works™ in general. A Luddic-majority planet under the effective Kazeronian boot? The mind whirls at the possibilities...

Hmmmm! (Yeah, the League needs a lot of love as well. Don't worry- we know.)

Bug Reports & Support / Re: The Typo Thread
« on: July 19, 2022, 01:41:53 PM »
^ Thanks, fixed!

Blog Posts / Re: The Pilgrim's Path
« on: July 19, 2022, 12:48:25 PM »
Will the Knights of Ludd "faction" exist a-kin to the Lion's Guard or will they still be a part of the Luddic Church?

I'm thrilled to see that there is probably no "pope" (?) in-game wise and there are many shrines (or sects) that make up the Church's membership. This gives up much lore to build off for modded Luddic factions.

Re. Space Pope: Right, yeah. My intent is for the Church's ruling body to be a sort of council, which... something will get into, at some point, probably.

Re. KoL vs. Church: Basically, the Knights are the militant branch of the Church. A separate reputation value is not, ah, something I have plans to work with when it comes to these groups.

Blog Posts / The Pilgrim's Path
« on: July 19, 2022, 12:11:20 PM »
Blog post here.

Bug Reports & Support / Re: The Typo Thread
« on: July 06, 2022, 05:03:21 AM »
"670nm marker beam" ... "670nm tracker beam"

Wow. TBH this is basically an oversight that's probably a decade old.

I've adjusted the numbers (though I might take them out, what with my No Numbers policy.)

Bug Reports & Support / Re: The Typo Thread
« on: May 12, 2022, 07:34:17 AM »
All of the above are fixed in-dev.

If you could, please enlighten me on the above so I can lay my poor brain to rest; it would be much appreciated! :'(

Very comprehensive! Wow.

To answer your question: inconsistencies are generally the result of me screwing up.

Blog Posts / Re: Uniquifying the Factions, Part 2
« on: April 30, 2022, 01:55:30 PM »
My biggest issue as a gamer is their sprites look too good. :)

Haha. Well, thank you!

I understand the changes in principle, but if the Syndrian Diktat is run by incompetent megalomania on so many levels, how can they survive squatting the most substantial fuel resources while hated by basically everybody else? You'd think somebody would have taken them out by now.

(Are they hated by basically everybody else?)

(And not to get into real life stuff, but: if you've got fuel to sell, it sure seems like someone is always willing to buy...)

Blog Posts / Re: Uniquifying the Factions, Part 2
« on: April 30, 2022, 12:58:27 PM »
Maybe it’s just me but I feel it would be more interesting if the diktat/The Lion weren’t so seemingly... unbelievably incompetent as they seem to be heading outside of the weapons department. I can believe being somewhat incompetent but personally, it would be more interesting for them to be lead by a Competent but still flawed leader rather standard evil dictator that doesnt anything right.

To address this and similar comments, there is (and will be) more to the Sindrian Diktat than just a military built on loyalty over competence. I do also think authoritarian dictatorships tend to fare poorly in running a competent high-tech military in particular, and particularly when left to rot for a long time, for logically consistent and historically-supported reasons vs. how media portrayals tend to make them look ultra-competent both in their own propaganda and in opposing narratives. But this line of thought risks getting wildly off-topic...

-- Back to my point: I look forward to exploring why this all happens, what it means for various parties involved, and throwing some scifi fun into the mix then blowing it up in the player's face, if they are so inclined. I don't want to get into spoilers for upcoming stuff so I guess all I can say is that the point of the Sindrian Diktat is not "lol look at how much they suck".

(..... I actually do think the Expanse has a very interesting take on the whole theme and narrative of scifi military dictatorships, though I don't want to spoil the last three books by going into it at all.)

"Absynth" is so, so good. I'm going to be kicking myself forever for not coming up with that one.

Edit: And it's a delight seeing my icons recontextualized like this :D

Master of Orion II is fantastic - the graphics are 'retro' but everything else about it is still solid. The diplomatic system is somewhat primitive and spying is weird/clunky, but the colonies, tech tree, and ship design/combat are all well done. I haven't played 1 or 3 nearly as much, partially because 2 was the one I started on, but also just because I think its the best one.

MoO 3 is bad and .. you know what, it doesn't exist. Weird how they stopped making this series after 2. Cough, cough.

MoO1, on the other hand (incoming Take!): I think its game design is superior to MoO2. The game systems are abstracted enough that there's almost no bloat; it's parred down to almost a boardgame in ways that defeats the scaling problems of Civilization-style empire sprawl and unit micromanagement. The technology system is brilliant for making unique playthroughs and ensuring each species plays radically differently based on how the consequences of tech play out.

That said, MoO2 obviously looks way better and has more cool little things to do. And it's way more playable what with not being 320x200 or whatever. Although, I believe some crazy team of devs made a freeware MoO1 clone? ... Found it: Remnants of the Precursors (and I know how much you people like Remnants!)

I found this game searching for something similar to escape velocity nova.

Aaaa, I played a bunch of that too! Or like, the demo version of it where Captain whats-his-name would come and shoot you if you played too long.

(... and Subspace, if anyone remembers that one!)

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