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Post news RSS First Command Progress Update 8-11-2013

So I said I was back, well what have I been up to?

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In an effort to not fall out of the world again I am going
to try to start posting semi weekly updates that correspond with my weekly
goals. Today I am happy to say that I have successfully completed those goals. This
week I set out to start creating the basics of the larger ships which will be
made out of several parts. In this case that included a few hallway parts, a
command chair, an engine, and a power core. The hallway parts are basically inert,
the only code they run is to add their respective mass to the ship for thrust
calculations.


The command chair is pretty much what you expect. On larger
ships, rather than right clicking on the ship itself, you click on the command
chair. The command chair is also unique in that the player can be seen when “sitting”
in it as opposed to when they are in the fighters where they are hidden. The command
chair is also the part that runs most of the logic for the ship, collecting all
the data stored in the parts parented to it and calculating thrust and rotation
speed. The end goal is that when parts get destroyed the command chair
will execute the calculation again so that losing engines or mass affect the
ships performance.


The engine was another major step in making this a reality.
Like the hallway parts it adds its weight to the ship's total, but it also has
thrust and IC values (IC stands for inertial compensation and controls rotation
speed). I may create a separate module to handle IC but for now the engine is a
logical place to put it. The code is actually quite reusable and the code that
handles all of the engines stats should also be used for basically all ship
modules.


The power core is the last piece and at the moment is sort
of anti-climatic. While it is technically set to provide 500 power, none of my
scripts actually calculate power yet so it’s basically a glorified 100 ton
paperweight in the center of the ship. In the future the power core will also
act as the center of mass of the ship and it will rotate around it rather than
the command chair. This serves two purposes, one it is much easier than
creating a system that dynamically calculates the center of mass, which would
be a bit overkill for me. The other thing it does is focus the camera. The
camera has some pretty big issues when you “kill” its target all sorts of reference
invalid errors. So the trick with the power core is that when you kill it, the
whole ship blows up anyway, so I don’t need to worry about removing the cameras
focus. To be clear, this was a happy coincidence, killing the power core was
always going to blow up the ship.


In fact that is one of the major points in the game. Typically
the power core will be securely placed towards the center of the ship, so it
will take a substantial amount of fire power to take it out from the outside.
However, boarding parties may be able to reach it and destroy it if they can
take out the ships shield generator first.


Anyway hope you have enjoyed this, and I hope I will have
more to post next week. Just so you know what to look forward to, next week’s
goals primarily include doors and airlocks, as well as a few various other ship
modules. After that I hope to start figuring out the life support system.

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