# Sci-Fi Survivalism Game

by EBENEZR
Tags: game, sci-fi, space, survivalism
P: 78
 Quote by EBENEZR Could you rephrase this, sorry I'm not sure I get what you mean.
You float in zero G on a space ship, that would need decades to reach its destination. Let's assume that you even have enough food for a meager diet and enough oxygen. What would you do? Would you roam the ship alone? Solve sudoku? Play Quake XXVI on ship mainframe? After a while I think that practically everyone would give up and simply freeze himself, waiting for next emergency and hoping that one day would meet other human beings.
P: 31
 Quote by Czcibor You float in zero G on a space ship, that would need decades to reach its destination. Let's assume that you even have enough food for a meager diet and enough oxygen. What would you do? Would you roam the ship alone? Solve sudoku? Play Quake XXVI on ship mainframe? After a while I think that practically everyone would give up and simply freeze himself, waiting for next emergency and hoping that one day would meet other human beings.
Sorry it has taken so long to respond! I don't see why it would require decades. NH is nearly at Pluto and it has been less than 10 years getting there. With a decent advance in jet propulsion systems, I don't think (considering some of the ludicrous assumptions made by some science fiction) it would be asking too much to reduce this time. If we traveled at 0.1c (and that's a pretty conservative allowance by most sci fi) it would take around 6-7 months to get from Pluto to Earth. That's assuming we're on the edge of the Solar System.

The Helios probes, sent in the 70s, maxed a speed of around 250,000km/s, which is not far off 0.1c, so I don't think it's a ridiculous random speed to choose for a not too distance future spacecraft. I've been writing the chapter by chapter progress of the game, to ensure there is always something to do (with a "random accident" function, sometimes a false alarm (malfunctioning onboard computer, sometimes real) and there are about 20 stages in total, if I split it into four stages per chapter, that's five chapters... one could easily set a chapter per month. I think with only five chapters, that'll allow the game to be short and sharp enough to avoid boredom, but pack enough suspense in to make a game worth playing. I'm looking on knocking up some 3D models for the interior parts, such as doorways, rooms, and eventually the whole thing. The layout of the ship will obviously depend on the route of the game (no point having them all muddled up and inaccessible and creating a paradox of "I need to access that room to finish the chapter, but I can't access it until I've done something that is a part of the next chapter" sort of thing.
P: 78
 Quote by EBENEZR Sorry it has taken so long to respond! I don't see why it would require decades. NH is nearly at Pluto and it has been less than 10 years getting there. With a decent advance in jet propulsion systems, I don't think (considering some of the ludicrous assumptions made by some science fiction) it would be asking too much to reduce this time. If we traveled at 0.1c (and that's a pretty conservative allowance by most sci fi) it would take around 6-7 months to get from Pluto to Earth. That's assuming we're on the edge of the Solar System.
It all depends on amount of left deltaV. Do you still have tones of fuel / reaction mass? If yes - indeed, everything would be solved quickly. However, assuming that that is supposed to be a wreck - realistically I would not expect too much of fuel (reaction mass). Because it's a game (and not a grim doomed expedition) there should be just enough fuel left... But just enough fuel means selecting careful and terribly slow path, which presumably would use gravitational slingshots.

By occasion - one more idea. Assuming that conserving fuel is the priority - what about a puzzle - not enough fuel for any path back to Earth... However, its possible to jettison a few modules of the ship to reduce its mass which should do the trick...

But the computer forbids to jettison undamaged modules...
Unless there is a dangerous fire there...

Hmm...

Where are the matches? :D

It is not obvious idea... and would save precious place in your RAM.
P: 31
 Quote by Czcibor It all depends on amount of left deltaV. Do you still have tones of fuel / reaction mass? If yes - indeed, everything would be solved quickly. However, assuming that that is supposed to be a wreck - realistically I would not expect too much of fuel (reaction mass). Because it's a game (and not a grim doomed expedition) there should be just enough fuel left... But just enough fuel means selecting careful and terribly slow path, which presumably would use gravitational slingshots. By occasion - one more idea. Assuming that conserving fuel is the priority - what about a puzzle - not enough fuel for any path back to Earth... However, its possible to jettison a few modules of the ship to reduce its mass which should do the trick... But the computer forbids to jettison undamaged modules... Unless there is a dangerous fire there... Hmm... Where are the matches? :D It is not obvious idea... and would save precious place in your RAM.
Haha, good one! I like the idea of using slingshots. It seems surprising that slingshots are so commonplace in space exploration in real life, but I have never heard of a game including them. Jettisoning nodes sounds like it may also add an extra body of depth to the game if there is an extra challenge. I have considered on board AI possibilities and decided on a wireless connection between the on board computer and the player's HUD... however the AI does not speak, it only appears as text at the bottom of the screen so it feels a lot more hollow and lifeless, that even the AI is not lifelike enough that there is a voice to keep you company.
P: 78
 Quote by EBENEZR Haha, good one! I like the idea of using slingshots. It seems surprising that slingshots are so commonplace in space exploration in real life, but I have never heard of a game including them.
It's a space equivalent of economy class. ;)

 Quote by EBENEZR Jettisoning nodes sounds like it may also add an extra body of depth to the game if there is an extra challenge.
From game perspective it also add one additional aspect - player might visit those modules first, so after all interesting interactions with that location would be finished it would be jettisoned. Thus it would be technically still the same ship, but in practice different rooms to visit.

 Quote by EBENEZR I have considered on board AI possibilities and decided on a wireless connection between the on board computer and the player's HUD... however the AI does not speak, it only appears as text at the bottom of the screen so it feels a lot more hollow and lifeless, that even the AI is not lifelike enough that there is a voice to keep you company.
Bottom of the screen? Hmm... What about leading ship by using glasses with enhanced reality mode?
 P: 841 Just a point...If you are going to spend the money to build an AI, you'll probably spend the comparably tiny amount to upgrade the user interface so the crewmember can also, in addition to (likely) being able to type questions or recieved typed answers, verbally communicate with the AI. If I am working on repairing an intricate circuit board, I don't want to have to take my eyes off the little bits and pieces to read a screen. I'd rather the AI simply say, "...Solder wire RZ-14 to Port 12 on Slot A...", or better yet a combination of the two. I can't imagine that a real life designer of an AI would not include the option to communicate audiably. (Though, I suppose the AI might itself consider audiable interaction a waste of energy in an emergency situation. However, I can't see that extending your battery life too much, considering the draw of other systems)
P: 31
 Quote by Czcibor Bottom of the screen? Hmm... What about leading ship by using glasses with enhanced reality mode?
This was much the sort of thing I was meaning, much like Google's augmented reality goggles, that the player puts on when taking off his helmet (because the oxygen levels have reached a breathable level)... maybe he needs to take the goggles off now and again to put them on charge..?

 Quote by Travis_King Just a point...If you are going to spend the money to build an AI, you'll probably spend the comparably tiny amount to upgrade the user interface so the crewmember can also, in addition to (likely) being able to type questions or recieved typed answers, verbally communicate with the AI. If I am working on repairing an intricate circuit board, I don't want to have to take my eyes off the little bits and pieces to read a screen. I'd rather the AI simply say, "...Solder wire RZ-14 to Port 12 on Slot A...", or better yet a combination of the two. I can't imagine that a real life designer of an AI would not include the option to communicate audiably. (Though, I suppose the AI might itself consider audiable interaction a waste of energy in an emergency situation. However, I can't see that extending your battery life too much, considering the draw of other systems)
It was more a case of I don't want this game to seem to absurdly in the future, in that if there is a voice, it won't sound very human because the world of the game has had better engineering developments than AI developments.

I also wanted the player to feel there was some company on the ship, but the only friendly company was not very human. Maybe it is on text mode from the beginning and the player, if they want the spoken version, needs to get it set up and will be able to do so at some point in the game, as if because of an emergency before he arrived, the software had been removed and put away by the previous crew.
P: 78
 Quote by EBENEZR This was much the sort of thing I was meaning, much like Google's augmented reality goggles, that the player puts on when taking off his helmet (because the oxygen levels have reached a breathable level)... maybe he needs to take the goggles off now and again to put them on charge..?
Maybe he needs to find them first?
(and repair with duct tape? :D )

 I also wanted the player to feel there was some company on the ship, but the only friendly company was not very human. Maybe it is on text mode from the beginning and the player, if they want the spoken version, needs to get it set up and will be able to do so at some point in the game, as if because of an emergency before he arrived, the software had been removed and put away by the previous crew.
Or maybe the computer is damaged (or so idiot proof that's impossible to directly give it commands while lacking proper password) and player boots the system from pen drive? (or even better from kind of device like his own mobile, where because he needed to have terrabytes of videos and games there was simply not enough place full version of starship AI.)

It would look cool - great mainframe, and actually all crucial functions and calculations can be done by a minor device that is mostly used for fun. It would also explain why the system in late XXI century looks so crude.
P: 31
 Quote by Czcibor Maybe he needs to find them first? (and repair with duct tape? :D )
I used to get updates about replies! This was almost a fortnight ago, sorry! That could be interesting, scouring the ship for essentials to help (a reference to the old point and click games? They were awesome)

 Quote by Czcibor Or maybe the computer is damaged (or so idiot proof that's impossible to directly give it commands while lacking proper password) and player boots the system from pen drive? (or even better from kind of device like his own mobile, where because he needed to have terrabytes of videos and games there was simply not enough place full version of starship AI.) It would look cool - great mainframe, and actually all crucial functions and calculations can be done by a minor device that is mostly used for fun. It would also explain why the system in late XXI century looks so crude.
Haha, you could get him to insert his usb stick and find there is nothing useful on it, just folders full of pirated movies, games and other stuff but nothing of any use, then connect his phone via a wireless connection or something.
 P: 8 Perhaps the player must go on spacewalks (something happened to the robonauts) to fix something, staying inside the shadow of the radiation shield, watching his/her dosemeter at the same time. The closer he/she got to the shield, the higher the reading would be and the faster he/she would have to end the spacewalk. Not to mention limited reaction mass for the MMU. Use up MMU propellant stores and the player will have to find another way to fix the problem. If he/she exited the shadow of the shield...well...maybe barf splatters the screen? http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/index.php If you haven't gone to this site before, it'd be a good idea to do so. This guy has tonnes of stuff about rockets.
P: 31
 Quote by cyberdiver Perhaps the player must go on spacewalks (something happened to the robonauts) to fix something, staying inside the shadow of the radiation shield, watching his/her dosemeter at the same time. The closer he/she got to the shield, the higher the reading would be and the faster he/she would have to end the spacewalk. Not to mention limited reaction mass for the MMU. Use up MMU propellant stores and the player will have to find another way to fix the problem. If he/she exited the shadow of the shield...well...maybe barf splatters the screen? http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/index.php If you haven't gone to this site before, it'd be a good idea to do so. This guy has tonnes of stuff about rockets.
Sounds great, thanks for the input!

Will do. Sorry it's been so long, I've now got full time work so doing stuff on this when I'm not shattered at the end of the day!
 P: 452 This looks like it could be very cool game. How easy will dying due to environmental reasons? Have you considered some sort of body-part injury system ? If the game world is sufficiently brutal, the lack of a bad guy can be overlooked quite easily.
 P: 251 Keep us posted on the progress
 PF Gold P: 960 The first post made me instantly think about System Shock 2 ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/System_Shock_2
P: 251
 Quote by Filip Larsen The first post made me instantly think about System Shock 2 ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/System_Shock_2
And of course the Bioshock series is also produced by Irrational Games, so the games are somewhat similar.
P: 31
 Quote by bp_psy This looks like it could be very cool game. How easy will dying due to environmental reasons? Have you considered some sort of body-part injury system ? If the game world is sufficiently brutal, the lack of a bad guy can be overlooked quite easily.
How easy? Fairly, if you don't learn how to assess risk properly during the game. Although the spaceship is designed with the safety of crew as tantamount, clearly something has gone wrong and, as is the case in the real world, you can easily wind up dead. The idea of a "hit point" system is unrealistic and should be done away with, I think, personally. A person is not a homogenous gloop that will suffer damage evenly distributed.

I hadn't considered such a thing, funnily, despite the above conviction. It's a good idea, and a great way for the player to empathise with their character more and take a less "all guns blazing" attitude to the virtual world. I guess in a malfunctioning spaceship in a near vacuum, the game world could be sufficiently brutal, yes! When you consider how many people die and are injured on a yearly basis from soft furnishings, it'd be crazy not to think that real antagonist is the universe itself.

 Quote by AnTiFreeze3 Keep us posted on the progress
Will do :)

 Quote by Filip Larsen The first post made me instantly think about System Shock 2 ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/System_Shock_2
I guess, it's impossible to get a game that has no content repeated, but I'm hoping the plot is sufficiently different (I believe it is) that there won't be an overlap. Hopefully if this gets pitched, any developer can point out possible blatant plagiarism problems (even if it wasn't a deliberate plagiarism)... which I'm willing to compromise on.
 P: 31 As I have recently started a job/apprenticeship training as a welder-fabricator, which is damn pleasurable when it's not insanely busy or brain numbingly slow, I've been thinking: industrial procedures in space. What if the player needs to do some maintenance on the craft by doing a spacewalk? There hasn't been much welding done in space from what I am aware, a bit of research by the Russians... How plausible would it be for the player to take a welder out and fix a few things (maybe some other stuff, like a mag drill) whilst out on a spacewalk, and which form of welding would be most appropriate? To some extent I can imagine welding working better in space than on Earth, but at the same time, I can easily believe the same things that would make it better could also make it much more difficult. Any ideas?
 P: 31 Well, that apprenticeship didn't pay out, but the industrial environment was very inspiring. However, I have just started a job as a 3D Technician, so I'll be getting used to 3D modelling and getting paid to do it! I have been doing some considerations on this story. I will come back.

 Related Discussions Calculus & Beyond Homework 0 Set Theory, Logic, Probability, Statistics 6 Calculus & Beyond Homework 1 Calculus & Beyond Homework 4 Calculus & Beyond Homework 4