Game Design, Programming and running a one-man games business…

Emergent L33tness

I was just testing a new laser blast graphic I added to the game, and had two big fleets of cruisers and frigates flying towards each other blasting away like mad, and noticed that the front frigate (which was under serious attack) seemed to be drifting backwards.

This puzzled me, because although i did once code support for reverse thrusters, I turned it off, and knew anyway that ship didn’t have any,

Then I realised that it was the physics of the blast effect. The number of enemy blasts piling onto the ships hull was not only damaging it big time, it was knocking it slightly backwards. I had forgotten that could happen :D

I wish this game was finished already so I could just sit down and edit some cool videos of stuff like that…

One of the main changes today was for fighters. To get a better sense of huge ships, I scaled all the fighters down by a fair chunk. Now when you add a fighter squadron, you get 16 ships instead of 9, and they are smaller. It does seem to look a lot better. The cruisers never looked big enough before. The AI is pretty fast and it doesn’t seem to matter with a few hundred ships per side, even with all guns blazing.

3 thoughts on Emergent L33tness

  1. Have you used attack drones in the game?

    Tiny little bunches of drones, like a swarm of wasps, zap away at shields. What makes them effective is their number and size. They fly so close to larger ships, that any fighter taking a shot at them will damage the shield/hull of the large ship if they miss, and the drones explosions will also impact the shield/hull.

  2. I have considered swarms of drones, it’s just a matter of ensuring they are optimised. I guess if they acted as a single entity in terms of decision making it might not be too complex. The danger is a swarm of 30 drones deployed by 20 ships is 600 new objects doing target acquisition, distance checking and so-on, it can eat up CPU.
    But it’s something I’m mulling over.

  3. I would use them as a single entity with a drone count that relates to the damage they cause. That should reduce the number of variables that need constant update. Also, anti-drone modules for your ships.

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