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Posts: 54
Reply with quote  #1 

Thanks to the enormous amount off suggestions regarding planets and other celestial bodies, we have decided to establish a designated thread for topics relevant to this subject. This is the thread.

Here you may discuss and spread your thoughts regarding celestial bodies.

Posts: 62
Reply with quote  #2 
We need some way of benchmarking the performance hit celestial bodies have before we can even consider how they would effect gameplay, with some fairly complex procedural generation/LOD algorithms i guess it would be possible with a minimal performance hit however that would take alot of time for the developers to implement so if the developers could confirm or deny the possibility of planets or "celestial bodies" as you put it (which is incorect as it's defined as "natural objects visible in the sky") that would be wonderful, as i personally would like a realistic expectation to be made for this game rather than get on the hype train and be disappointed with the end product.

Back to what i would like, I would LIKE kerbal scale star systems and large servers inorder to make the planets somewhat crowded, but again that's what i WANT not expect.

Posts: 22
Reply with quote  #3 
Since I'm not sure on the scope that we are talking about here...

A) No actual polygons rendered option

I'd like you to consider something along the lines of what homeworld 2 did.
Example:          <link></link>
Basically, they made backgrounds that made you feel like objects were present "somewhere out there" but weren't. It worked very well.

B) Render simple sphere's but don't allow landing... ie. atmosphere only. 


But picture way more bloom has you get closer! (I couldn't find the actual picture of the effects in that game)

C) Rendering a planet...

I think it would be neat at some point in the game to be able to colonize mars or something like that. I'm afraid of the polygon count/slow down if  you do seamless landing... not to sure how that works...  But I think it should be a game update /patch / dlc of somekind in the future. Not for now, for now lets get the basics of the game going.

Posts: 240
Reply with quote  #4 
I'm very happy to hear pro-planets have the ear of Keen.

Celestial bodies are essential for the UX.  I've explained why in a few threads, but to recap;

An immersive space game isn't an 
immersive space game if it lacks immersion. While I can appreciate a space sandbox, if we're going after the 'engineer sandbox in space' players, planets in a universe fit like a pair of fuzzy socks. Consider where many players are coming from:

  1. Garrysmod
  2. Kerbal Space Program 
  3. Evocron Mercenary
  4. Starmade
  5. Outerra/Anteworld
  6. Universe Sandbox
  7. Space Engine
  8. Minecraft
Now consider you've only tapped those who are paying attention to Keen. You've only scratched the surface, and I know you know this. 

I'm willing to bet most people here have played at least 3 of those games I mentioned above.

All of those games have the element of an open world (and/or build, engineer, fight, explore, survive) to them, and as such, it inspires that audience, drawing them in. A few lean heavy in areas like building specific things, or focuses entirely on space and exploring or manipulating or participating in an open environment.

Having planets that people can populate, conquer, fight over, or even destroy would effectively position SE for the entire (specific and vast) audience of space & engineering freaks which is barely being served right now.

The degree of which you engineer wouldn't alienate any fraction of this audience if you include it as part of the mechanic, as well as ways to dull any learning curves, such as difficulty settings. Consider that minecraft and all of her modifications (technic, FtB) did not alienate players, it attracted and engaged them to a massive degree; spawning new game communities, overnight.

As far as planetary gameplay goes;

Let players start on a planet, or on a user-built space dock. Since you're going the community server route, this gives you plenty of options to make this a powerful game in a very rewarding market while meeting the ever changing desires of players. Give server admins the power to define their world and community will naturally segment itself based on preference.

"Does it have planets..."

This question was raised by a few members of another forum I belong to. It is asked because planets drive players (server communities) to play this game in ways you haven't thought of yet. The natural progression is that players will want to work together to build and launch a space-dock or station, plus the supporting infrastructure. Such as space elevators, ferries, AI cargo delivery, debris defense... endless possibilities. Where they go from there is anyone's guess, but let the guess be the mechanic. 

Here, you will see competing spacedocks (factions) and eventually the beginnings of a great combat server - ...or co-op conglomerate ...or whatever that community admin wants. As you build larger and better ships, you can bring more resources, explore longer distances, conduct missions, and meet hostile (team) forces in battle.

The points here are choice and immersion; both to an equal degree. Central to this theme would be player slots on the server. What good is a vast universe if you can't populate it. I'd really like to see you fine folks aim high for concurrent connections, and put some weight on the server requirements. I do understand limitations and even some of the uncharted territory you are literally exploring. 

If I had pull out just one element of a single game that would drive the most participation and repeatable gameplay; it would be minecraft's survival and tech-mods (aka engineering) in a vast world. Now co
uple that survival and engineering with the goal of taking to the universe above you that is chock full O' realms unexplored and unnamed. I wouldn't spend game-time on anything else.

Start the other team on some distant planet. Have them build, and let the two discover each other as friend, or foe.

tl: dr - Pro-planet all day. Planets + space + engineering + survival = Whoa! "I'm rubbing money on the screen, but nothing is happening."

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Posts: 12
Reply with quote  #5 
Honestly, I expected Space Engineers to take place in space.  Not on a planet, building infrastructure, exploring land and terrain. I want none of that, at all, and I think many agree with me. However, fairly large asteroids, with caverns, industrial stations, and ore deposits of various metals, with a complex system of corporations, pirates, mercenaries, traders and miners, freelancers, and entrepreneurs to fight over them could take the place of planets for the type of gameplay described above, should that be the desired gameplay.  Planets also need to be unreasonably large to be at all realistic.  Not to mention the absurd amount of dev time and effort required to implement even a semi-decent atmospheric system, procedural terrain, etc, on an engine probably not designed for it... and then there's the performance cost.

Easy start 2 and the trailer (besides being solo) are great examples of what I had in mind when I purchased Space Engineers.

Posts: 57
Reply with quote  #6 
Great to see you are taking your communitys input into consideration. I guess the planet discussion will devide the community until you (the devs) make a decission.

A solution could also be to let the story take place around a huge planet like Saturn with plenty of moons around it... (story is placed in 2071 or sth like that, so this could be realistic) ...where ores and ressources are partly located at the moon surfaces. The moons could be not as huge as a planet, but bigger than the present asteroids. The moons could have different conditions for mining or even reaching surface such as a dense, foggy or really stormy atmosphere. 

The players are starting spread around the central planet (which surface cannot be reached due to strong weather effects) and have a goal. Mining on asteroids. Fight pirates, mercenaries or each other. Get gear, good enough to reach one of the moons for better (or more) ressources. Build defense stations to protect their conquests. Thousands of possibilities! [smile]

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Posts: 595
Reply with quote  #7 
I think Celestia is good program to give an idea of the solar system and planets and moons.
BossAlien -_-

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Posts: 45
Reply with quote  #8 
This is space engineers and not conquer planets engineers.

I rather see juist faction battles in space that flight for resources.

And if there comes a would take a lot of time to create it.

Maybe an idea for space engineers 2

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Posts: 595
Reply with quote  #9 
Orbits are one of the most important areas for building big things. I don't need any planet landing options but orbits are totally different thing. Building orbital stations or even the space lift could be very good challenge.

edit. space elevator

Posts: 2
Reply with quote  #10 

i love the idee of a Space elevator.....

and mby "spacecraft launch sites"


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Posts: 181
Reply with quote  #11 
I would like to be inside a galaxy full of planets, but I want these planets to be too far away to reach. Just as background (like our current sun) to add to the space look and feel. It would be neat if they orbited around the sun and would help signify the current "season" time of year since in space you don't get a day/night cycle.

As for objects to land on, a large collection of asteroids in many complex combinations is fine by me. Also traveling comets could pose as "rare" spawns that would allow collection of possible hard to find materials. 

Posts: 89
Reply with quote  #12 
I think planets should be private or protected space. What I mean is that everyone starts with their own planet/chunk of private space to work with that can only be warped to. The planet doesn't need to actually exist it can just be a background art, just as long as you are in "your" planet's private space station (that you build) you can access planetary resources to do things. 

Once you run "your" planet's private space resources dry you need to venture out into open space to find more resources. In which would be great if there were to different types of open space. The more rich with materials pvp enabled combat space and a far stretched pvp disabled hard to obtain resources safe space. (for those who just like to survive and build)

Clans/Guilds would also be good in game (just saying). You could have private Clan/Guild space too but that could be attacked when listed on some form of display. The only thing I ask if Clans/Guilds are added is please for the love of all that is creative make the Clan/Guild ranks editable. Like adding/deleting ranks, which rank can access what, what the name of the rank is etc...

Posts: 1
Reply with quote  #13 
I think Planets should be added because we want this to be a simulator that is more realistic than not, which means planets! I also think we should be able to create "moon bases" or bases on these planets. We should have to find resources and build our first ship inside the atmosphere because that is just, you know, realistic. Also another part of the planet addition would be to be able to create AA turrets and surface-to air missiles to protect our faction base from invading factions and pirates.

I hope the developers consider the suggestion on this thread because this game has A LOT of potential!
Krazy Bomb

Posts: 11
Reply with quote  #14 
I think it would be interesting if there were gas or ice clouds as well as larger asteroids. Planets might be a stretch, but I think that depends on both the community and the developer's opinion. It would be interesting if they were either planetoids, or they were localized to only one sector each.  

Posts: 23
Reply with quote  #15 

i personally think planets would be insanely awesome. 

planets would be 1: massive deposits of resources which would lead to battles over territory, 2: clear designations of where territory ends or begins for each faction (no John, we dont go to planet Zule. thats Bob territory), and 3: a clear landmark that can be easily identified by players and used as hubs for commerce, military, engineering, or any other means. 

now, to look at this realistically, full scale planets that can be landed on from any direction and location would be virtually impossible for any computer today, and would be a server killer due to massive size and data. 
if planets were to be made a possibility, theyd have to be basically over-glorified asteroids: really big rocks with some atmospheric and gravitational qualities, but not anything you'd need to download the entire bible over every time a new one is discovered. something with a localized gravitational field that lets you walk around the entire thing without falling off like you're the main character in a joke about Australia, and basic breathable atmospheres encompassing them. 

it'd give you something that ships can orbit around (orbiting sounds insanely cool), people to meet at and war over, and a central hub for any self-entitled civilization to begin their factions growth.

because saying "hey man, im at the asteroid" "which asteroid?" "the one with the holes in it", doesnt help when you are in the cold dark blackness of space where each asteroid looks like the one next to it and your best friend could be right next to you or 1 light year away. 

and these planets dont need to be overly complicated. theres only really 5 things you need to make it planet-y, at least in my opinion. 

different colors: makes it easier to identify and communicate to others. plus, pretty. hell, throw in some rings or something every now and then, thatd be sweet.

big'ish: if it looks big enough, it'll be considered a planet. if walking across the land to the other part of the planet is a pain in the ass, then you're on the right track.

atmosphere (or none): simple barebones atmosphere system to keep people alive on the planet. in some cases it could be poisonous atmospheres, and others, no atmosphere. this gives a basic marker or a planets desireability, and whether mining or plain ol' existing on the thing is worth the time and effort.

more 'ore: gives players another reason to conquer planets, besides being able to say that they own a freakin planet. 

simple geological features: some mountains, crevices, caves, and such. that'll do. hell, maybe some old abandoned buildings and mining facilities. thatd be neat.

im oversimplifying it, yah, but thats how i see it, put in layman terms.

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