Hi there! Thanks for the kind words and feedback. Glad you liked what you say in the polygon writeup.
Yeah. Obviously, we agree. Our designer has been spending some time carefully designing and balancing the components as best as possible. It's quite a bit of effort as there's ~140 components and several dozen distinct modules you can customise the hell out of.
We hope so. We wanted to ensure that players who are into that stuff can get very good at picking what parts to carry, and what the most effective/fast way of repairing their ship would be, but also throw in less-efficient automated repair systems for players who are in it mostly for the combat / story / complexities of being a trader/freelancer.
Yeah. I grew up playing sub sims and being fascinating by submarine warfare, and it always struck me that the most interesting space movies tended to borrow more from submarine / tall ship combat than WW2 dogfighting. Not that I have a problem with the latter, but yet another Elite / Star Citizen thing but done by a very, very small team didn't seem like a good idea.
We feel this is a more unique take, and one we're better equipped to design & build.
Yeah, something we're quite aware of. We have no tutorial right now, but have been planning how to do it since we first began to prototype the game.
In fact, we have the guts of it written down on paper and are planning to have a one-use ship in our opening tutorial, specifically built to introduce the player to the different ship systems in a sane order, also giving them the opportunity to play/experiment in as much or as little detail as they would like.
Effectively, a half-guided tutorial.
Because while the importance of a good tutorial can't be overstated, this game is both too complex to cover EVERYTHING in the one tutorial, and also one where letting the player pick which parts of the tutorial to focus on will be doubly important - those who are more interested in the engine room may spend more time there, we want to let them do that to learn more before they're dumped into the open world.
Don't worry, they don't. We have a carefully designed set of components with advantages and disadvantages.
For players who aren't technically inclined, buying off-the-shelf modules with varying degrees of efficiency in terms of their internal components might be enough, but, for instance, a certain type of cheap jump drive may be less efficient, but may have more internal redundancy, meaning they're going to be easier to fix after taking damage. Just to name one example.
From a tone standpoint, it's hard not to go past the Millenium Falcon, either, as a touch-stone.
It's a ship of a class so little-regarded that everyone calls it junk and is surprised that it can do anything at all - but Han has it wired and upgraded so much that it outperforms ships far out of its weight range.
We definitely want that with our game.
So while we are going to start with three flyable ships of varying costs / etc, we do like the idea of very smart players being able to upgrade that default Ceres-class freighter to do insane things and run figurative rings around even the shiniest of brand-new Enceladus or Leander-class freighters.
Yep. There are core systems, outer systems and 'uninhabited' systems. And it's not procedural. We've spent the last year writing the backstory of the systems, the politics, designing their layout and individual dangers.
Where you choose to travel and when is important for the kind of challenge and experience you will have.
To us, everything is retro about this game. Some aspects of it may be a bit unique (I can't think of any space games the explicitly modelled their mechanics on submarine combat, but that doesn't mean they don't exist) but despite that huge chunks of the game are inspired by certain specific '90s games.
To see a simpler example of our engine room in practice, see Microprose's Lightspeed/Hyperspeed games.
For the way we're doing our submarine combat, it's a half-way between 688 Attack Sub and 688(i) Hunter/Killer, both '90s games.
For the trading, it's a melange of the systems and styles of a few trading games from the '90s.
For the ship upgrading / tuning we were heavily inspired by the Street Rod series, despite them being racers.
We didn't lift these systems entirely, but in all cases we thought a specific mechanic / style was a good jumping off point, and began to figure out which elements we liked and which we felt would need to be altered for our specific uses.
There are a lot of reasons why we went this art style, despite knowing some people would disagree with.
But it's the decision we made - at least for Objects in Space 1.
Anyway, thanks for your feedback!
Nice to get comments that aren't all roses. (Not that having posts complimenting our work to read isn't helpful when you're knee-deep figuring out insane bugs and trying to keep your motivation levels high.)