Update #66

Greetings everyone,

YES - signs of life were detected.

Perihelion Interactive wishes you a belated happy 2017 and the strength to make your New Year's resolutions come true!

 

We are very sorry for the long period of silence. We have used that time well to focus solely on development. We can now finally present what we have been working on behind the curtains for the past two months: Space Combat!
After finishing our playable prototype of an earlier iteration of Space Combat, we came to the conclusion that it lacked the “fun” factor. Instead of releasing a playable, but unfun version of the game, we decided to rework the aspects that were not satisfactory and make improvements.

Part of our design process has been to seek inspiration from the community. The feedback all of you have provided over the last number of updates has proven invaluable to the Space Combat Team. Some of you suggested a real-time with pause function rather than the turn-based approach we had initially outlined. We’ve taken that feedback on board and gone a step further by making the pause function an active feature of gameplay.

A number of the changes outlined below for Space Combat have had a basis in the suggestions of the community. These are the main features we have worked on:

  • One Ship VS Multiple Ships: The core gameplay now supports multiple ships. The player directly controls one ship in Adventure Mode. However, you are able to control additional ships during Space Combat. These additional ships can either be provided by specific missions, or by using the “Call for Help” feature during combat. This feature allows you to call in NPC ships that you have met in Adventure Mode. Your Faction Standing with these ships’ associated factions makes them available or not for support.
  • Turn-Based VS Real-Time with Active Pause: In the previous design, the core of space combat gameplay was turn-based. This impeded on other game mechanics, was too slow-paced and simply less fun that what we wanted. We are now using a real-time combat system, with an ability to slow down time which we refer to as “Active Pause” in the video. This provides you with more time to adjust your tactics to the current situation, without impeding the desired rhythm and pace we want to achieve.
  • Modules Targeting: This is currently in an early prototype phase so not all functionality is implemented yet, but we have made good progress. This feature is important when it comes to defeating larger ships - it allows you to cripple your enemy’s systems: you can destroy Engines, Weapons, Shields Module, Scanners, Bridge and Energy Generator. The destruction of any of these modules has a different impact on the targeted ship. Destroying the enemy’s Shields Module, for example, prevents the shields from regenerating. Destroying the Weapons module will reduce his damage output.
  • Abilities: We have a working iteration of characteristics-driven Abilities. Abilities with specific behaviors like Cloaking, placing mines, will come in a next iteration. We have three categories of Abilities: Captain, Officer and Ship. Captain and Officer Abilities both consume your Crew’s Morale, whereas Ship Abilities consume Energy.
  • Weapons: We have two main categories of weapons: Energy weapons and Projectile weapons. Energy weapons consume ship Energy with each shot, and are effective against Shields. Projectile weapons consume Ammo, and are effective against Hull. Ammo can be acquired from defeated ships’ wreckages, and bought from Starbases in Adventure Mode. Energy is generated during space combat through the Energy Generator module.
  • Gas Clouds: We have different types of Gas Clouds. They were not 100% functional when we recorded the video, so we did not explain them there. We have Gas Clouds which allow you to hide from the enemy, some clouds that disrupts your shield’s regeneration, and others which recharge your ship’s Energy.
  • AI: We have made progress on the AI design, but it is still at an early stage. In the next iteration, we will implement more advanced behavior for ships during combat, including desired attack behaviors (orbit, stationary, hit & run, etc), how the AI approaches defeating the player and fleeing. You can choose to either destroy or disable enemies and even request their surrender. You will be able to retrieve more or less loot depending on your choices, and your standing with different factions will reflect these choices.

 

Charles Pearson, who was initially working on Adventure Mode, took over the work on Space Combat two months ago, recorded a narrated video for you guys! Click on the picture below to get to the video. This should give you a good overview of what has been achieved! We hope you will enjoy it, please let us know what you think!

 

Please note that all visuals (models, effects, user interface, lighting) recorded in this video are not representative of final quality. This is our test environment for validating gameplay mechanics, and features implementation. We still have to work the user experience, the UI art, 3D Art and lighting.

We will continue to iterate on Space Combat in the coming months.

The next main goals for Space Combat are:

  • Improving the weapons targeting User Experience (weapon grouping).
  • Adding missing signs & feedback: Ship status, obstructed weapons indicators, line of fires for weapons, enemy states and more.
  • Finalizing the Modules Targeting system.
  • Implemention of AI behavior.
  • Improving the movement system: Additional commands to orbit or approach targets,  multiple selection, and more.
  • Implementation of the dialogue system and objectives system in Space Combat.
  • Creating different combat scenarios and objectives.
  • Looting / Surrender ships in Space Combat.

These changes have affected the Kickstarter Alpha and Steam EA preparations. We are continuing to work towards that initial release.

On a final note all of us here at Perihelion would like to express our gratitude for your patience while we’re working towards that initial release.

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Commandar
Commandar's picture
Backed: 11/29/2013 - 21:35
Order of Novy PetersburgOrder of The MandateMedal for excellent performance
Well it's wonderful to see an update, we do love to see updates. And a happy February 2017 to you and the team as well! :D <<<<<<Thoughts:>>>>>> -->Yay an update!! -->Directional shields and/or armour/hull (even if just based on cardinal directions) and ideally which (can) recover in the almost organic way seen in the original marketing could perhaps add depth (and be something of a genuine novel element) to the space combat, if feasible. -->The different weapons (energy, ballistic, missile) can surely have their own advantages and disadvantages (range, accuracy, cost, energy/ammo use) without needing to be useless against hull or shields respectively, an affinity sure, but being effectively useless against a particular type I'd figure must hurt suspension of disbelief in an RPG and gameplay in that it creates an artificial-seeming and kind of unnecessary limitation on player choice and options Keep it up guys (and girls?), glad to see things are in the works!
Dark_Ansem
Dark Lord of the Sith
Dark_Ansem's picture
Backed: 07/22/2014 - 20:00
What happened to the original vision? On Steam there's a guy who has been doing this ALONE, and possibly much better than you!

My home is for rent. Check it out.

FireMyth
Brigadier FireMyth
FireMyth's picture
Backed: 10/25/2013 - 17:51
Order of NicholasOrder of Novy PetersburgOrder of The MandateMedal for excellent performance
Yeah, you guys (devs) really hosed this up big time. Thanks for stealing my 500 smackers and (maybe) delivering a basic singleplayer space game.

This is me waiting for The Mandate...

I STILL WANT MY REFUND

James4038
James
James4038's picture
Backed: 07/24/2015 - 08:00
Pre ordered this game a year and a half ago is it ever going to be released or was it a waste of good money
tehstrider
Griff
tehstrider's picture
Backed: 12/02/2013 - 05:46
Order of Novy PetersburgMedal for excellent performance
Waste of our money as it seems.
tireironmike
I am the dirty space pirate hooker that your parents warned you about.
tireironmike's picture
Backed: 04/10/2014 - 04:11
Order of Novy PetersburgMedal for excellent performance
Wow, 4 years of Dev time for a Mobile game that looks like it took 12 weeks to make.
david.schur
Dave
david.schur's picture
Backed: 11/22/2013 - 08:32
Order of Novy PetersburgOrder of The MandateMedal for excellent performance
Learned my lesson. Will not be supporting any future Kickstarter games. Good job helping to kill the model Peri..
Sniddy
Sniddy's picture
Backed: 11/14/2013 - 05:23
Order of Novy PetersburgOrder of The MandateMedal for excellent performance
So, you're selling points on your own website What makes The Mandate unique? Explore a world of culture, with 1500 years of lore, ruled by the Tsars. Survive a world of pirates, mercenaries & faction forces with their own agendas. Make enemies, or appease more powerful factions. The world reacts to your choices, and you must live with the consequences. Utilize the human chain of command to manage your crew. All hailing from various colony ships, tasked by you to fill their stations. Watch them grow, learn, and experience… watch them tire, break down, and die. Ships in The Mandate are the crew’s home. Blast through shields and bulkheads to knock out the various sub-systems, ejecting the crew into space – all in real time. Board the enemy, or defend against boarding! Fight from space as your friends put boots on the ground, or team-up and storm the enemy ship with RTS mechanics. Scavenge derelict wrecks and salvage what you can to survive. Expand your home base to rearm, upgrade and design new ships. Grow from a single frigate to a powerful battle squadron. We wanted to make a game where you’re not a solid, singular object in a sky-box; you are a captain in an evolving, dynamic ship that hundreds of people call home. They adapt to you, and grow with you as you fight alongside them, and if you suffer losses, you’ll feel the loss that comes with that. You will start with a single ship and must assemble a fleet to defeat the rebellion. Coordinate fleet and boarding actions simultaneously, striking the enemy on two fronts for maximum effect. In captured star systems, you may design, research and construct your own star bases and ships, recruit and equip your troops with advanced weaponry, and negotiate alliances in intense roleplaying encounters. SO. what happened to our game, this stripped back poor BF Gothic mod? No crew interaction, nothing like waht we backed for anyway, and I shudder to think how badly you'll handle the single player Face it, you're not making The Mandate anymore
lethal4
lethal4's picture
Backed: 11/21/2013 - 23:59
Order of Novy PetersburgOrder of The MandateMedal for excellent performance
You realize this is pretty much a shitty StarWars: Empire at war mod at the moment right? i do not feel that this would convey the weight and importance of your ship and crew at all. do a combat system along the lines of what Dreadnaught is developing at the moment, direct control 3rd person. then use the pause mode to give general commands to the rest of your fleet either via this method or just point and 'attack this target' commands.
Vast
GameMaster
Vast's picture
Backed: 11/22/2013 - 04:29
Order of Novy PetersburgOrder of The MandateMedal for excellent performance
Nice to see an update after a while. Since the game is still in a baby stage still, I really can't complain about the game for now, until I see a lot more polished version. But don't forget that communication is vital if you guys want the game to be a success. I recommend addressing some concerns from the community with some Q&A.
Lord Kandy
Lord Kandy's picture
Backed: 05/05/2014 - 08:44
I really hope the final version has a bit more action in it. This looked very old school star trek. Two ships just sit in the one spot and shoot each other, one shot at a time. Boring. What happened to the battle orchestra? The combat in that was much better, and looked a lot more fun and well thought out..... and most who viewed it agreed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XX99C21Nhms
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