Design: Starlanes

Past public reviews and discussions.
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#151 Post by Kevin »

Tek, I don't know if it was a console game, but what you describe sounds sort of like Star Control. Anyone else remember the original SC? It was a (very fun) arcade-space-war sort of game. Each race had its own ship, some better than others, and you could go head-to-head with the computer or a friend. Anyway, there was a "strategic" variation where you could conquer your way around a little galaxy with a dozen or so stars. When one player attacked the other, the combat would be resolved via the arcade game. I believe damage carried over from one combat to the next, but it's been a while.

Anyway, in that game, the galaxy would constantly rotate. The stars would get brigher as they got closer. The starlanes were dim blue lines, except for the one you were currently considering considering moving along, which was a white or bright blue line. It might be useable for a strategic game that used a 3D starmap. I don't know how close it is to MOO3, which I avoided.

FWIW, I like 2D and starlanes.

WRT "irrelevant" starlanes. I understand this to mean that if for example two stars are five units apart, at some point in the game (e.g. engine speed 5) it will take one turn to get from one star to the other whether you travel via the starlane or offroad. So we should address the question of whether multiple starlanes can be traversed in a single turn. I assume the answer is yes, but I don't know if that has been explicitly stated anywhere. Should there be a starlane-to-starlane travel penalty for each 'hop'? (KISS says "no")

BTW. wormholes are instantaneous, right? I mean, they're not just super-long starlanes, they're faster too, is that correct?
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#152 Post by Ablaze »

It would be interesting if some starlanes were faster then others. A faster starlane would glow brighter on the map then a slower one, and wormholes could actually just be faster, longer starlanes. As your engine tech increases starlanes would get dimmer on your map as they offer less of an advantage over offlane travel until only the brightest ones are left.

This would add the capacity for a lot of flexibility.
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#153 Post by skdiw »

ppl already posted that idea; it's been considered to be implemented.

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#154 Post by Impaler »

Actualy the problem of 1 turn lane travel and the potential for multiple lanes to be used in one turn has some bearing on an idea I proposed earlier.

I call it Fractional ETA, in other words all ETA's for ship movments and construction of things is givin in decimal. So one journy might take 3.15 turns and thus the ship will be avalible for me in the destination system 4 turns after the journy starts. If a ship is moving along multiple lanes their could be some time saved even though each individual lane has been speed up only sligtly. Each .01 Galaxy turn would be equal to one Combat turn. Ships would enter the system on the apropriate turn of the battle based on their ETA. So Lets say I have 2 fleets going to a system, one will take 1.34 turns to reach the system the other 1.45 turns. In this case the ships arive 11 combat turns apart on the second turn. Under this system engine tecnology would remain important even over short distances as the faster ship gets to enter a system first and glass the planets before anyone else can arive.
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#155 Post by skdiw »

I think we can restrict wormhole usage to one usage per turn. But I think having a ship moving across the galaxy using multiple wormholes in a single turn is fine and makes sense.

I think fractional ETA is a bit too complicated. Also, I can't imagine why you would what a fleet to arrive at seperate times during an attack? maybe to get a few bombs off before enemy interceptor comes?

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#156 Post by Aquitaine »

There are no 'faster/slower' starlanes as the system is currently spec'd out. Wormholes are instantaneous.

The faster/slower starlane issues came up on the old boards. While we liked the variety, we thought that it introduced one too many variables into the system -- if the starlanes themselves change how fast you travel and your engines change how fast you travel, that basically ended up with the player having no idea how fast any one journey would take until he actually went to do it, and that violates the KISS rule for marginal returns.
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