Devblog 13th June 2017
Greetings, citizens ~
It’s with a heavy heart that we announce, Auburn is leaving the Schine team for new opportunities. He completed his project here and we are extremely proud of his work. We are currently working on its integration into the universe update coming later on.
What are we working on right now?
We are currently completely reworking the advanced build mode and other GUI functionality to work with a planned GUI scaling update in the future.
Advanced Build Mode
We’d like to go in-depth for one specific build tool that we are going to add. The Fill Tool.
The fill tool is one of the tools we are most excited about. It fulfils quite a few purposes that the community has been asking for and will help you update your ships in the future power update.
Once you engage the tool, it uses the camera position to determine where the fill area starts. When the user confirms the fill location, the game will use the highlighted block type to flood fill up to a number of blocks set by the user.
Each click on “fill” will then add a set amount of blocks (maximum amount per step determined by the server). It will keep track of the blocks already placed so it will reach even into the farthest ends of your ship. Alternatively, it can be used to make some cool spherical shapes on your ships.
The great thing about this tool is it isn’t only for filling empty blocks. It can also be used to fill over existing blocks. One way this will be useful as a “Paint” tool. You can select which block type to replace when filling. The default is the “Empty” type and it would work like described before as a normal fill tool. But you can also select “Grey Hull”, which would replace groups of touching grey hull blocks on your ship. It, of course, would replace special shapes like wedges or slabs with the right shape of the replacement type if possible (grey hull wedge -> red hull wedge with the same orientation).
Another tool we’re working on is the Line Tool. We will implement this in two stages. The first stage will be a simple version. Just like in “Create Docking” you will be able to select two points on the grid (the free point selection is something we will also add for other build tools). The helper will make a line between those points which can be used as a reference or to restrict building/removing just like any of the other build helpers.
Additional stages will add line thickness and additional line segments that can also be set to splines, which then would enable you to make curves.
In our discussions about build mode item handling, we also remembered the inconvenient cargo handling that players have to go through, in case they want bidirectional cargo transfer between a station and a ship. The current system is too complicated and also doesn’t allow for item flows down a docking chain. Altering the feature will open a better way to transfer cargo.
The way we will do this is to add two new rail blocks: Rail-Unload and Rail-Load.
The visual difference will make it easy for players to see what the dock is before docking. All connected inventories to your docker block will either be loaded or unloaded to or from the entity you are docked to. These 2 rail blocks will be swappable through logic interaction just like the other ones.
To prevent exploitation, a ship can be set into four modes: “Always Allow Transfer”, “Deny Transfer”, “Always Ask”, and “Only ask for different faction”.
When your ship is set to “Always Ask” (default), whenever you dock to an Unload or Load-Rail, the pilot will get a dialogue asking him to confirm the transfer. If there is nobody to get the dialogue, the transfer will not start. Of course, the transfer can at all times be manually triggered on/off via a ship’s hotbar, and the mode can always be changed in the ship menu.
As for the next dev build, we should be able to release one at the end of this week, followed shortly after by a pre-release the next week if all goes well.
And as always, thank you for playing StarMade!
~ The Schine Team