Author Topic: Prospector  (Read 7564 times)

magellan

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Prospector
« on: March 03, 2009, 11:20:21 pm »
lacks content? yes
lacks polish? yes
interesting? well... to me it is!

But i think its save to say that it has made quite some progress over the past weeks, so if you want to give it a(nother) try:

http://rlprospector.googlecode.com/files/prospector0.1.0.zip

Feedback and bugreports are of course most welcome!

Vanguard

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2009, 01:29:32 am »
Hey, this looks really original!  Obviously it's still a little clunky and hard to figure out, but I think it seems like it could be pretty fun.

magellan

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2009, 03:56:13 am »
Glad you like it curseman!

But i must say that i am a bit suprised about your hard to figure out comment. Hmm... only thing i can think of is that "administrators office" might get a clearer "Get money here" label, or that the extra cargo pods in the weapons menu are a bit well hidden. Hmm... the landing party "HP" display?
I mean, it tells you what keys to press (most of the time), so i guess it can't be that

... could you be a bit more specific? I can work on that then.

Vanguard

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2009, 04:37:14 am »
It was mostly just for the lack of documentation, I think I've got it mostly figured out now.  Things I didn't understand were, for example, what the job of a science officer or security was, exactly, or what the different unique planet features meant (which for that one, I now see is intentional so the player can figure it out).

I also didn't know that weapons and cargo bays used the same slots, or that buying a better ship hull would give you more of both, but everything can be learned without too much trouble by experimentation.  Basically the readme could just use a bit more expanding rather than any changes to the game itself being necessary.

While I'm at it, another thing that can make the game more confusing is that whenever something happens, the interface doesn't reflect that until the next turn.  So if, for example, one of my security officers is exploring a planet with acid rain and dies, he will show up as alive on my status screen until after my next move.

I actually came pretty close to winning once, having found profitable trade routes and the best goods to sell between them, but unfortunately the space pirates also took an interest in my business.

Most of the time I've been trying to play an explorer, but money is definitely harder to come by that way than it is through playing a merchant.  My favorite death was when I came across an alien who demanded that I worship him.

Overall I think you've definitely got an enjoyable game on your hands.  I'll be sure to follow your progress with it.

Edit:  Alright, I've had a winning run through the game now.  I wanted to win by doing something cooler than working as a merchant, but after two bloody and unsuccessful assaults on the pirates' homeworld I switched to the path of least resistance.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 06:10:47 am by Curseman »

magellan

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2009, 08:37:40 am »
Well, congratulations!
tststs... adapting body armor and a teleportation device and you let that get dusty while hauling cargo? ;)
And thank you very much for the feedback!

Trading is the way of least resistance? You found profitable traderoutes? hmm.... interesting. I thought the pirates were enough to prevent the first, and the merchants were messing enough with supply to prevent the second. Not to mention that a fully loaded heavy cruiser with 4 extra cargo pods hauls 20% of max possible inventory of a station and should mess up his own prices pretty quick.

Or have you been trading mainly between station and colony? I was wondering if i should let the merchants fly there too after it has been discovered. If *that* was the trade route mentioned i know now i should.


ido

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2009, 08:43:33 am »
Description? Screenshots? Maybe even a gameplay video?

I like to be able to know a little about a game before trying it out (especially when I'm at work ;)

magellan

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2009, 10:50:55 am »
Of course sir!
*strolls off to make some screenshots*
*strolls back*

Your job is to explore an uncharted region of space. you get paid for mapping planets, and data on lifeforms and resources. You can also trade goods between space stations. There is a handfull of upgrades for your ship and equipment for your awayteam, around 120 planets in 30 solar systems.
10 of the planets are unique, ranging from "candystore where everything is free" to "land and enjoy being dinner".

Screenshots:
Explore strange new worlds:
http://i39.tinypic.com/27yqz9z.jpg
Fight new lifeforms:
http://i41.tinypic.com/67pf9i.jpg
Fight the environment:
http://i44.tinypic.com/3130y74.jpg
Fight pirates
http://i39.tinypic.com/6qbr82.jpg

And get rich while doing it!
As curseman put it so nicely: its still far from being incomplete, but i am working on that ;)
« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 10:56:15 am by magellan »

ido

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2009, 12:08:53 pm »
Looks absolutely awesome.

Are you the same guy who was working on the same idea on #rgrd?

EDIT: added link to www.reddit.com/r/rgrd/
« Last Edit: March 04, 2009, 12:31:21 pm by ido »

magellan

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2009, 03:08:53 pm »
No i am not that guy. there is a similiar idea around? interesting! Cant really say where the idea jumped at me from, it just was kinda there suddenly.
Though i guess most of the game elements are true and tried. (I would say elite & starcontrol might claim this is the result of a drunken night one of their more distant relatives had and really wouldnt wanna talk about ;)

Vanguard

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2009, 10:11:45 pm »
You can reveal the entire surface of a planet just by scanning it repeatedly.  That uses time, but not fuel.  Wouldn't it be a better idea if you could only get a certain amount of a planet's surface revealed with each level of scanner?  Right now they're a convenience factor for that, but don't provide anything too important.  It also makes exploring an unnecessary risk with the way things are.

magellan

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2009, 11:10:12 pm »
The way this works atm is that your science officer makes a roll for every tile. If he makes the roll it gets revealed (if it wasnt before) and so on.

So: to get those last few tiles the chances actually do get smaller (needs to make roll on the correct tile) Also to get the good stuff you need to land anyway. Humm... interesting observation... maybe it *does* deserve a slight nerfing indeed... thx

And just because i am so happy this works, and i want to show off a little:

A small step for roguelikes, but a big step for prospector:

Dungeons!
Still need to work out a few bugs, but with the next release you can asphyxicate in airless caverns too! :D

Vanguard

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #11 on: March 06, 2009, 02:01:03 am »
That looks like it'll be cool!

I just finished a round where I found an alien particle cannon for my ship, and chose to replace my laser bank on the second slot, but when the game asked if I was sure I wanted to replace that weapon, and I pressed 'y' it just prompted me a second time, and I couldn't get out of it by pressing n, escape, or anything, so I had to abandon that game.

I also managed to defeat the being (unnamed for spoiler reasons) who is found on planets where your science officer says he's getting readings he can't make any sense out of.  His special attacks continued to strike at my team regardless of this, and soon after he respawned.  Is that all there is to that particular encounter at this time?  It's still a fun feature, but I was just expecting a reward or something.

magellan

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #12 on: March 06, 2009, 09:25:57 pm »
http://rlprospector.googlecode.com/files/prospector0.1.1.zip

Here is a version where the bug you mentioned has been squished (what have i been thinking when i wrote that?) and where you can die above, on, *and* below ground!

As for *peep* he doesnt respaw anymore. Unfortunately my monsters are terribly dumb, cant really make them give out rewards ... yet, or stay dead. guess i gotta rewrite that part in the near future.

also scanning has recieved a slight nerf, and a few display oddities are slightly less odd.

In the caves you might notice that the *beep* have a tendency to spawn outside their *beep*. They shouldnt do that, and to be honest i have no idea why they do that. Its not the end of the world that they do but i shall be looking into it.

Also let me say: Thank you curseman & ido for your feedback! Very helpful and boosting my motivation!

Next big stop: if you attack enough merchants the stations get hostile and the pirates friendly! :) ... and smarter monsters.

Vanguard

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2009, 01:22:30 am »
Alright, I've tried the newest version for just a little while.

The underground tunnels are a cool concept, but so far I've only found one small cavern, so I can't comment on them in practice yet.

Did you lower the chances of a planet having air, or make asphyxiation more of a threat in some way?  I've found myself suffocating all the time.  It's not a problem for the game, I just need to pay more attention to that I guess.

Pirate bounties seem to be working correctly now, that's good to see.  Now I have a reason to actually hunt for them instead of just trying to avoid every fight.  I think I'm going to do a playthrough where I make as much money off of just doing that as I can.

The finite amount of the map that you can uncover with the scanner now encourages more active, dangerous exploration, but I think the pilot needing to correct the ship's orbit thing consuming fuel is a bit too much.  I don't like an actual cost or penalty associated with scanning a planet because it's the only way you can look at the planet without actually landing on it.  Most of the time I scan planets I've already been to just to remind me which planet it actually is.

One issue I noticed in the last version that I forgot to mention before (and maybe this has been fixed in the new version, I don't know, but I thought I'd bring it up anyway) is that sometimes explored areas on a planet are still shown as unrevealed black space, even after actually going in and looking at it personally.  This seemed to happen the most near the lower left corner of the screen, for whatever reason.

Anyway, keep up the good work!

magellan

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Re: Prospector
« Reply #14 on: March 07, 2009, 10:39:33 am »
yap, those 4 black spaces in the lower left hand corner...  had me puzzled for quite a while. (much like those darn bleep spawning outsider their bleep) thx. but they should be gone now.

As for the asphyxication: gravity affects your oxygen rate now. On 2g+ planets it gets pretty harsh.
At least running out of oxygen kills you now: In the last version it didnt. the buffer overflow did. ;)

Small caverns: they are very hard to find. as you might have noticed a cave entry isnt a feature you are going to recognize from orbit. But the few i tested and left alive i didnt leave without a 10k cr bounty. Just ask yourself: (I'll put this white on white for spoilery reasons)

what would kirk do if he had nothing but a phaser and faced a wall out of lose rock? (or soft rock, or rock....)

for cave exploration i recommend laser guns or disintegrators, and a science officer of at least level 4.