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

Repair Drones

It’s amazing how much extra effort had to go into this over the last 48 hours…

Repair drones have always looked a bit cool, but not been much help to the player. The problem is, their only tie to the core simulation was their quantity. Every repair module gave you a ‘swarm’ of repair drones, and once your ship took some damage, you would see them hovering around and looking like they were welding the ship back together. The problem was, they didn’t actually achieve anything froma¬† visual point of view.

Thios was worse than a visual bug, because it means that when you play against an enemy fleet that has lots of ships which make strong use of repair drones, you cannot tell if that enemy cruiser is on it’s last legs, or just cosmetically burned, yet at 100% hull integrity. Surely this had to be fixxored.

So now (behold the youtube vid below), those drones (as well as having nicer welding effects) do actually weld those damaged bits of your ship back together. To make it REALLY obvious in the vid, I built a ship with three repair modules, so until the repair supplies run out, it’s pretty nippy at welding stuff back together.

Let me know what you think. I reckon it not only looks better, but will make playing against repair-spammed ships much easier and more enjoyable. (in terms of learning from the battles. The simulation is unchanged)

6 thoughts on Repair Drones

  1. I like the fact that you can see the damage heal back up. It helps show how much of a hit you’ve made and the enemy’s ability to repair it.

  2. Visual teaching is always good. No point to a manual or tutorial that no one plays. But mouse text is seen by many more people.

    Better yet, a key part of the game being designed to be visually obvious.

  3. They pop in/out of nowhere? Looks a little bit off but maybe the time is better spent on other things.

    It looks more like some kind of lightning then welding lasers? Green plane-beams or just straight lasers + sparks or maybe nano spray would be best IMO.

    But it still looks really good so might as well move on and spend time on other stuff.

  4. I’m glad for this, good update. Obviously more special effects will be able to be added later, but as a design mechanic it seems to work well, and was much needed.

    I’m having a lot of fun with the game Cliff, you’re doing a great job. For me, I think GSB is striking the perfect balance between ‘coffee break game’ and ‘sit down and play for hours game.’ It can be either one, and I find myself in my spare time pondering ship designs.

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