Endless Sky

General discussion about anything related to Transcendence.
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Re: Endless Sky

Post by PM » Sat Dec 03, 2016 4:17 pm

I played another shorter game of Endless Sky, to check content I missed first time around (missions available only before the start of the civil war) and to see how fast I can capture the endgame godship Arfecta; one can be spawned well before endgame and without triggering any plot if you know what to do.

Updated comments:
One feature I was unaware of until late in my first game was mining. In Endless Sky, your ship can shoot at red or greenish asteroids, and they will explode into smaller rocks if shot at enough. Your ship can fly over the rocks to pick up ore. They are worth a modest amount, but they are effectively free money, which is useful early in the game when your ship is not strong enough to kill pirates single-handedly. Later in the game, when ore is not worth much to you, but when you engage fleet vs. fleet, some asteroids just get in the way and explode, and your ships cannot help but scoop up some of the debris that happen to be in the way. Some cargo space can be filled from accidental mining.

I was wrong that the Sparrow is a trap choice because of mining. Even though the Sparrow still cannot deal with most one-on-one combat, it can still mine asteroids for some cash. The other two starter ships start unarmed. The shuttle can buy one blaster immediately, but it is nowhere near as powerful as two lasers. The shop where you start at has no turrets for sale, which means your freighter starts totally unarmed and cannot mine or fight until it can find a turret it can use.

Also, the Sparrow can still pick off pirates when they are busy fighting other friendlies, and you will eventually get a chance to plunder disabled ships while friendlies (who normally destroy disabled wrecks) are busy fighting elsewhere. Plundering is still the most profitable activity, until it gets fixed next release.

With mining and opportunistic plundering, I made money very quickly in my second game, and missions did not pay enough to bother with unless the destination was along the way. I also did little trading because I needed cargo space to plunder hardware from pirates. The only missions I took seriously were very high bounties not because of the money, but because of enemy warships with unusual stats (that are superior to what shipyards offer) or equipment that normally requires completion of plot events to unlock.

You can only demand tribute if you combat rating is high enough (7 or more). Otherwise, no one will take your demands seriously. Also, even if your rating is high enough, there are two human planets of indominable monks that will never take you seriously, no matter your rating, just like aliens.

Combat:
The AI will only follow a player to some distance away from the center before turning away. It is sort of like your ship crosses an invisible boundary, the enemy cannot see you anymore, and they retreat. Theoretically, you can pick off enemies by crossing this invisible boundary repeatedly if you have superior range, but you likely will not that option unless you grind for some alien (Pug) hardware first.

The (alien) Pug Arfecta is a godship. It is fast for its size, its guns are strong, pierces through shields, and have much more range than most weapons (meaning it can kite with ease). If you can capture it early enough, it can single-handedly destroy nearly everything, and what things it cannot kill before getting overwhelmed, it can use its integrated cloaking device to disappear and wait until shields and hull regenerate.


Reputation is very simplistic. Kill things a faction does not like, and it likes you more. If you attack the faction or its allies, it hates you more. With sufficiently high reputation, you can attack a faction (which angers it), leave, then if your reputation is high enough even after losing some, the faction will be friendly again the next day. One general thing is that every human and some aliens hate human pirates. If you made enemies out of normally friendly governments, just kill pirates for a few hours and they will be friendly again. If you want to be friendly with human pirates, you can attack alien pirates from the east (who occasionally invade human space, and will never be friendly no matter what)... who just happen to have hardware you really want to have and plunder.

Exact relationships of governments is not apparent in the game. Player needs to read game data files or search online forums for the info. It also helps to read your save files, which are .txt files, and the data is legible (instead of raw binary) and very neatly arranged.

Another thing with reputation is triggering some plot events will automatically set reputation regardless of previous reputation. For example, after you join the Free Worlds, the Republic turns hostile, no matter your previous reputation. Then, after the war, Republic becomes friendly again, no matter the reputation acquired during the war. During the war, you can do all sorts of evil non-plot things on the side like farm and plunder ships or demand tribute from planets.
Download and Play in 1.7 Beta...
Playership Drones v7 (Beta): Acquire and command almost any ship in Stars of the Pilgrim or Eternity Port.
Drake Technologies (Alpha): Updated for 1.7! More hardware for combat in parts 1 and 2!
Star Castle Arcade: Relive classic arcade gaming in a new Transcendence adventure!
Godmode v3 (WIP): Dev/cheat tool compatible with D&O parts 1 or 2.

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Re: Endless Sky

Post by Watch TV, Do Nothing » Sat Dec 03, 2016 6:26 pm

I haven't played this game myself but based on other peoples' descriptions it really sounds as if it slavishly copies core game mechanics from the Escape Velocity series (reputation, how trading works, how mining works, the mission system, tribute, boarding/capturing, jumping). These mechanics are extended but rarely if ever reinterpreted from the ground up and there are few if any basic game mechanics that have not previously been seen in the Escape Velocity games. Is that a fair assessment?

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Re: Endless Sky

Post by PM » Sat Dec 03, 2016 7:51 pm

Having never played Escape Velocity, I would not know. However, a quick browse through Escape Velocity videos on YouTube reveals some similarities between the two games.
Download and Play in 1.7 Beta...
Playership Drones v7 (Beta): Acquire and command almost any ship in Stars of the Pilgrim or Eternity Port.
Drake Technologies (Alpha): Updated for 1.7! More hardware for combat in parts 1 and 2!
Star Castle Arcade: Relive classic arcade gaming in a new Transcendence adventure!
Godmode v3 (WIP): Dev/cheat tool compatible with D&O parts 1 or 2.

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Re: Endless Sky

Post by NMS » Sat Dec 03, 2016 8:25 pm

From my extensive Escape Velocity series experience and modest Endless Sky experience, plus what I've read, that's correct. ES adds a little more depth to some mechanics and makes minor changes to others, but it's much closer to EV than other more recent games in the same genre, including NAEV (unofficially Not Another Escape Velocity).

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Re: Endless Sky

Post by PM » Tue Dec 13, 2016 2:33 pm

One more advantage Endless Sky has over Transcendence: builtin targeting. No need to find a targeting ROM in Endless Sky. You get to target things right from the start. That said, Endless Sky needs targeting for the player to target and hail, board, or aim weapons at ships.
Download and Play in 1.7 Beta...
Playership Drones v7 (Beta): Acquire and command almost any ship in Stars of the Pilgrim or Eternity Port.
Drake Technologies (Alpha): Updated for 1.7! More hardware for combat in parts 1 and 2!
Star Castle Arcade: Relive classic arcade gaming in a new Transcendence adventure!
Godmode v3 (WIP): Dev/cheat tool compatible with D&O parts 1 or 2.

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Re: Endless Sky

Post by PM » Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:39 am

Since the release of Transcendence 1.7 beta 3, I now consider Endless Sky's fire controls superior to Transcendence. If I target anything, that target will get shot at when I fire in Endless Sky, just as I expect. Transcendence used to do this, but not anymore since 1.7 beta 3. Whatever the reason for the change, Transcendence's new targeting behavior is very aggravating.

Now, in Transcendence, if I am out of range, I cannot fire towards the target. Maybe understandable if there are other targets of opportunity to shoot at, but I should be able to fire toward my target if there is nothing else to shoot at in range. (Even if there are targets of opportunity, I probably still want to shoot at my target regardless what it is.) However, being unable to aim or track non-hostiles that I have targeted and are in range is rage-inducing, especially now with Vault of the Galaxy and its teaming population of non-hostile galactic creatures to shoot at for resources.
Download and Play in 1.7 Beta...
Playership Drones v7 (Beta): Acquire and command almost any ship in Stars of the Pilgrim or Eternity Port.
Drake Technologies (Alpha): Updated for 1.7! More hardware for combat in parts 1 and 2!
Star Castle Arcade: Relive classic arcade gaming in a new Transcendence adventure!
Godmode v3 (WIP): Dev/cheat tool compatible with D&O parts 1 or 2.

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Re: Endless Sky

Post by george moromisato » Wed Jan 04, 2017 6:40 pm

PM wrote:Since the release of Transcendence 1.7 beta 3, I now consider Endless Sky's fire controls superior to Transcendence. If I target anything, that target will get shot at when I fire in Endless Sky, just as I expect. Transcendence used to do this, but not anymore since 1.7 beta 3. Whatever the reason for the change, Transcendence's new targeting behavior is very aggravating.

Now, in Transcendence, if I am out of range, I cannot fire towards the target. Maybe understandable if there are other targets of opportunity to shoot at, but I should be able to fire toward my target if there is nothing else to shoot at in range. (Even if there are targets of opportunity, I probably still want to shoot at my target regardless what it is.) However, being unable to aim or track non-hostiles that I have targeted and are in range is rage-inducing, especially now with Vault of the Galaxy and its teaming population of non-hostile galactic creatures to shoot at for resources.
I agree that I went too far in the targeting changes. I'll fix that for the next beta.

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Re: Endless Sky

Post by snafu » Thu Jan 05, 2017 11:20 pm

george moromisato wrote:I agree that I went too far in the targeting changes. I'll fix that for the next beta.
Would it be possible to utilise a combination of soft- & hard-targeting (ie introduce some sort of target lock)? The locked target would receive the majority of player weps fire while soft targets might auto-switch depending upon their aggressiveness, threat level, etc..
Dom 8-)

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