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Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds.

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All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> Distant Worlds Series >> Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. Page: [1]
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Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/19/2012 4:25:25 AM   


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While I love this game and everything it has going for it, one thing still kinda bugs me. How easy it is to get around.

Even playing with the largest number of sectors, your starting scouts can travel over a third of the galaxies' width/length before running out of fuel. While the 15 sector map is big, granted, it feels much less so because of this.

I typically find myself playing varied cluster maps these days and like the idea of starting off small, facing those challenges isolated in your little cluster with whomever else started there, then eventually expanding your technology to open up these new clusters with all the joys and chaos that can bring. Sorta like the Terra maps in Civ4, it adds kind of a 'colonization' phase to the mid game, and it's interesting to see how each cluster developed in isolation.

However, the problem is it's way too easy to travel far distances in open space as it is. Ideally I would like to see basic fuel containers only allowing for a travel distance of about 3/4 a sector, take that difference from current starting range and apply it across the board to all fuel techs. Cutting the jump speeds by about half or less would be necessary too to make it feel right.

Though cutting this may cause problems for combat and inter-system movement, so maybe bumping up the HyperDrive consumption would be a better idea.

"that's insane!" you might be wondering, "refueling is annoying as hell as it is, why would I want shorter ranges!?". Well, while I'll agree refueling can be annoying when you have lots of fleets, It wouldn't be any different here, ideally the only thing that will change is your perception of what portion of the map is reasonably within your range at any given time. Essentially, it would just, indirectly, make the map bigger.

The benefit would be seen all over. Aside from the Cluster galaxy type becoming more unique in the sense that these vast distances aren't just an annoying after thought to grumble about as you watch your ships cross them, but real vast oceans that take time, planning, and investment to navigate.

Setting up fuel bases and having a supply line will become essential for invading or exerting any kind of presence at these distances. Making said bases actually mean something worth defending, not just something you're slightly annoyed when destroyed, and just build another. further, should you decide to invade someone so far, not only will you need to maintain this 'beachfront' colony or base you have near their cluster, but also, committing forces to that theater will actually be a commitment. None of this 'oh well, I'll just send everything, if I need to defend or they need reinforcements, they're not that far out anyhow.

Soooo I guess what I'm getting at is, how would one go about changing:
-Fuel capacity of fuel storage
-Energy consumption of HyperDrives
-Speed of HyperDrives

Also, on a side note, if a slider were implemented to scale the "effective distance" of travel, that would be cool

In the mean time though, anyone have any ideas for how to MacGyver this?

< Message edited by Abraxis -- 4/19/2012 4:26:27 AM >
Post #: 1
RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/19/2012 5:54:23 AM   

Posts: 2478
Joined: 8/17/2010
From: The Briar Patch Nebula
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Hello Abraxis;

To handle one of your issues, in the main Distant Worlds directory is a file 'Startup.ini'
Inside are the following settings:
'Distant Worlds startup settings

'screenwidth 1024
'screenheight 768
'hyperdrivespeed 1.6

You can speed or slow the hyperdrive speed there. I will look into your other
two issues to see if they can be modded somehow, but I think they're hardcoded.
Hope this helps!


Shields are useless in "The Briar Patch"...

(in reply to Abraxis)
Post #: 2
RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/19/2012 2:55:02 PM   


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Thank you Abraxis for the well-articulated thoughts and ehsumrell1 for the work-around.
Follow-up question (because I share Abraxis' feelings entirely): Would you know if it would be terribly difficult to implement, in Game Setup options, sliders for Hyperdrive Speed (extremely slow - very slow - slow - default - fast - very fast), Fuel Capacity, and Energy Consumption? I ask because even if these are adjustable by fiddling with startup.ini, computer inept people (such as myself) are exceptionally wary of opening up and messing with files such as those.

(in reply to ehsumrell1)
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RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/19/2012 6:08:00 PM   


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Joined: 1/25/2011
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Thanks Ehsumrel! even if it's only half of it at least it's indicative that it could be accomplished.

After playing a bit more with this in mind, messing with the fuel storage would most certainly be bad, very bad. It would mean ships can travel relatively shorter distances, but also any weapons discharge and inter-system movement would drain relatively more fuel. At .5 current capacity even a minor engagement would drain about half the fuel early game, ships would pretty much be stranded after anything but a defensive fight.

Modifying hyperdrive consumption is clean and simple with no adverse effects on anything other than effective warp distances.

Ono: There's nothing to worry about in changing the .ini file's variable. The only difference between that and an in game slider is one is in-game and represented by a slider :P. For example, it would be no different if all the option sliders in game modified an .ini file, which the code then drew its variable from. Not having an .ini file for these options is just removing the middle man. In the case of this .ini file, they have the middle man, because they haven't yet implemented the... right man? in game slider man?
well, it's no more harmfull than playing around with the sliders in game in any case. Just avoid setting the value to a 0, or a negative, or a decimal (unless it already is) just to be safe.

< Message edited by Abraxis -- 4/19/2012 6:11:32 PM >

(in reply to onomastikon)
Post #: 4
RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/19/2012 10:32:17 PM   

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Joined: 6/3/2010
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I did not even think to look at the startup.ini file...
Another duh for me...

< Message edited by tjhkkr -- 4/19/2012 10:33:28 PM >


Remember that the evil which is now in the world will become yet more powerful, and that it is not evil which conquers evil, but only love -- Olga Romanov.

(in reply to Abraxis)
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RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/19/2012 10:45:59 PM   


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isn't the startup.ini limited? eg. hyperdrivespeed can only be modded between 0.5 and 3 I think I remember seeing on here before...

(in reply to tjhkkr)
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RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/23/2012 7:16:08 PM   


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I sometimes feel adding some logistical complexity to the game would make it more fun. Add a couple of extra fuel tanks to my ships and I can fly across the galaxy? More fuel consumption would make refueling/star bases more well as make strategic positioning more relevant.

A global, editable fuel consumption rate would be very useful.

(in reply to w1p)
Post #: 7
RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/25/2012 1:29:58 AM   


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Except the current freighter AI does not know how to do pit stops. It will try to fly the distance anyway, and fly on empty incredibly slowly.

Reducing the hyperspace travel speed will indirectly also increase fuel consumption, as the drive will be running for much longer before arrival. - I do like the idea of slowing down hyper jumping though.

A "quick and dirty" solution would be to play on the largest map with fewer stars. That way there is going to be longer between them at least. Tweaking the ini file from 1.6 down to 0.5 should also have a dramatic effect. If it works as I think.

Please post your findings! :-)

(in reply to Jerkface)
Post #: 8
RE: Modifying Fuel capacity and jump speeds. - 4/25/2012 1:31:34 AM   


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Double post.

< Message edited by weblife -- 4/25/2012 1:32:16 AM >

(in reply to Jerkface)
Post #: 9
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