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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

System Overhaul

A friend of mine and I discussed about fuel ranges, and we pondered about what would happen if you lost a system that's connecting your other systems (getting cut into two separate regions that can't reach each other). As it is now, construction points will still apply, so if I have one system that's cut off from the rest of the empire, it can still build ships. Which could become an exploit (trade a planet to an ally that have massive construction advantage, and he can pour ships to that system).

So I decided to remove the construction screen, and change the ship construction to be system-wide. No more list of ships to build, you'll have to go to each system and specify which design (or projects like stargate) to build. It'll be almost the same as Master of Orion 1, there will be a slider specifying the amount of funding to go into that system's construction. The total factories is a sum of all factories on all planets in that system that are under your control.

However, research is still accumulated from all planets into one place. Farming is system-wide only.

I'm working on planetary development "screen". It's not really a screen, more like a tabbed section under the list of planets, like MoO 1. If you select the system's star, you will see the ship design that you want to build, funding for construction and farming, and the system's food consumption. If you select a planet, it will show you the planetary development funding (three sliders, one for each field, factory, lab, and farm) and last turn's pop growth/decline.

If a planet maxes out on an area (factory), the excess funding will go back into your reserve, and the slider will be set to 0.

With this system, it's easy for me to add or remove planetary aspects (pollution, terraform/ecology, etc). For now, there's only factories, farms, and labs. If I add pollution cleanup, that means I can add a racial perk that either reduces pollution or ignores them (like Silicoids), making the races more diverse. But I also don't want the game to be overly complex.

As soon as I get planetary development and rest of user interface working, I will release a new version. You should be able to notice a lot of differences and improvements.

Here's a screenshot to help illustrate what I'm working on. Notice the missing "taskbar", I'm still working on overhauling the user interface. Sliders are there now, the screenshot's a bit old.

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