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Zero-G Comet mining with jet suit module [request and demo]


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Hi, I wanted to demonstrate how I'd imagine comet mining would work in spaced out. Comets would give a renewable source of ores. This would let us ranch plug slugs without running out of ore, and serve as an alternative to volcano taming for anyone who can't figure that sort of thing out. Not to mention provide a use for our mining dupes after all the asteroids are colonized.

 Comets would show up on the starmap as a slowly moving entity. Rockets would fly alongside them and your dupes would go out to mine them in jet suits. There's no building allowed on these maps, only mining and collecting resources.

EDIT if you're here just to criticize please at least load the save and play it before commenting. Collect some ore or something, idk. You're starting to repeat each other and I get the impression y'all haven't read the thread or actually looked at the save from the tone in here...
 

Stats:

Jetsuit module: enables spacewalks near comets. 

Holds 2 jet suit docks and jet suits.

Cargo capacity: 500kg petrol, 800kg oxygen

Build cost: 1000 kg steel, 2 jet suits

To demonstrate I've built a "rocket" with 8 modules in the base game. The tile based rocket is just a stand in, the rocket in spaced out would appear normally as it does on the launch pad. Modules are in order: Hydrogen rocket engine, liquid oxidizer module, liquid fuel module, battery module, jet suit module, "life support" module, Spacefarer Module, Basic nosecone.

Comet test.sav <-- load up the base game and try it out. It feels nice, I think it's believable. If you suspend your disbelief enough to imagine the rocket modules as they appear on the launch pad it's quite fun and funny.

 

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Here's a closeup of the jet suit module


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Again, this is just a demonstration and a stand-in. In game when implemented it would look like a normal rocket module.

Total internal dimensions are 10x6 and it all works. The scale is roughly equivalent to the spacefarer module. There's an input for petroleum and an input for oxygen. The transit tube just connects the jet suit module to the spacefarer module. This seems about how I'd imagine dupes get to the trailblazer module, though in this setup it's two-way.

The following is the pic of the comet I made:

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It's pretty big, but not big enough to have it's own gravity. Disallowing building and restricting access to jet suits makes the map effectively zero gravity without any major overhaul to the simulation mechanics. Debris still falls, but that's not a big deal. Sand, regolith and snow will still fall, so it might be necessary to remove those elements from the map or risk them breaking immersion. Pretty troublesome since regolith is a space material. I chose to include it, since it probably won't fall out the bottom of the map unless you try to make it happen. Liquids will fall, but comets are too cold for most liquids to form anyway. No point in including liquids without being able to build pitcher pumps. Maybe it should have artifacts. Anything really could be on it.

Space mining! Finally a use for jet suits


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Comet test.sav <-- load up the base game and try it out. It feels nice, I think it's believable. If you suspend your disbelief enough to imagine the rocket modules as they appear on the launch pad it's quite fun and funny.

 

 

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You don't have to build a rocket pad to go to the comets and mine, since there's no gravity. So no rovers, no trailblazer modules, no material cost aside from fuel. It'd play more like a survey mission in that the rocket just goes out to wherever the comet currently is, dupes do some labor, then come right back.

What would be worth going there for? Is ore not enough?

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3 minutes ago, n_t_p said:

Is ore not enough?

Not exactly justified for making extra berry sludge, lost dupe labor in the flight, and the petroleum used for the jet suits.

If you can figure out how to make liquid hydrogen, it's pretty likely that you also know how to tame a volcano.

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The example rocket is just an example. You could also make it there with a simpler rocket. Petrol or even steam would get you there with a module slot to spare in the current balance. If you use that slot for the suggested jet suit module then you're golden.

What would be enough to justify the effort, if not ore?

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i've heard of asteroids made of pure gold, i wouldn't mind chasing down something like that

i think the thing is too big still as well.  maybe a third the size and have it more resource dense.  that is if this is an asteroid that'll disappear/appear as an event or something

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Okay, yeah, I mean whatever they want to put on it really isn't important. It could be something like graphite where this is the only source, or it could just be an alternative to other systems. Maybe comets are a grab bag of sorts where you don't really know what will be in it until you crack the shell. But the basic mechanics are what I'm trying to showcase here. The shape of the asteroid and what's on it isn't important. What's important is this is a unique gameplay experience and a new way of obtaining resources very unlike any other methods we use. It fits thematically and represents lots of new content for potentially very little development effort.

Like imagine the "landing" sequence for a comet. Instead of starting at the top of the map and the rocket comes down, instead it starts at the bottom of the map and pulls up gently along side. Once it's stopped and your dupes come out, do their work, and return to the rocket. Launch sequence starts and the engines fire up, again sending you up until you exit the map at the top, as if launching from a spacepad. 

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Hey, that is a really nice idea!

To make it simpler (I'm not sure if better...) there could be Commet Miner rocket module that gathers all the resources from the commet. So there is no micro management, you just fly your rocket to the commet and it comes back with resources.

Also - there could be artifacts found on such rockets as currently we have no renewable source of those (and I really don't like using Pedestals for anything else...)

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2 hours ago, pether said:

Also - there could be artifacts found on such rockets as currently we have no renewable source of those (and I really don't like using Pedestals for anything else...)

I think we should get artifacts from lockers outside the starting planetoid and occasionally as buried items fitting the biomes` theme (like the hatch skeleton among fossils).

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19 hours ago, n_t_p said:

If you use that slot for the suggested jet suit module then you're golden.

You still need a slot for the petrol tank; you can't possibly fit enough petrol in the crew cabin without using infinite storage (which things shouldn't be balanced around it)

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8 hours ago, he77789 said:

You still need a slot for the petrol tank; you can't possibly fit enough petrol in the crew cabin without using infinite storage (which things shouldn't be balanced around it)

In the crew cabin? Wtf? I didn't say anything about needing a refuel. Small petrol would probably give enough distance ro reach a comet nearby. Large petrol would be more than enough. Since comets move it's highly likely to pass through the rocket's range, assuming you can intercept it in time. Just the interception process of looking where it's going to be in a few cycles and having enough starmap revealed to see it coming and having a fast enough rocket is all really interesting gameplay. 

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On 3/31/2021 at 6:06 PM, n_t_p said:

Okay, yeah, I mean whatever they want to put on it really isn't important. It could be something like graphite where this is the only source, or it could just be an alternative to other systems. Maybe comets are a grab bag of sorts where you don't really know what will be in it until you crack the shell. But the basic mechanics are what I'm trying to showcase here. The shape of the asteroid and what's on it isn't important. What's important is this is a unique gameplay experience and a new way of obtaining resources very unlike any other methods we use. It fits thematically and represents lots of new content for potentially very little development effort.

Like imagine the "landing" sequence for a comet. Instead of starting at the top of the map and the rocket comes down, instead it starts at the bottom of the map and pulls up gently along side. Once it's stopped and your dupes come out, do their work, and return to the rocket. Launch sequence starts and the engines fire up, again sending you up until you exit the map at the top, as if launching from a spacepad. 

I agree with the first paragraph.  To me, a great comparison would be the base game's planetoids - they'd be temporary "points of interest" with various resources and artifacts.  You know, those cute displayable artifacts you'd sometimes get from base game space missions with humor and decor bonuses?  This'd be a great spot to put those.  Also, Neural Vacillator recharges.

This would also provide an interesting late-game exploration option.  Once you've settled down on most of the planetoids, where do you go next?  Why not check out a comet or two?

------

Now, I would implement things a bit differently, partly in order to keep things simple.  Just add a new rocket module and fitting:

Airlock Module (similar to your "Jetsuit module")

Used to allow Duplicants to spacewalk.  Requires two Jet Suits for construction and supports two Dupes when spacewalking.  Contains its own Petroleum tank, which may be filled from an external source.  Multiple copies of this module may be built on the same rocket.

The difference:  no Oxygen storage.  We'll opt for a slightly different paradigm that will be easier to communicate while also more slightly more flexible.

Airlock Gas Fitting

Used to supply Oxygen to spacewalking Dupes.  Conceptually, this would establish a "tethered spacewalk" paradigm, using Oxygen from whatever source the rocket's design already required.  This could be from an Algae Deoxidizer, stored Oxylite, or merely forwarded from Gas Cargo via Gas Output Fitting.

To be safe, let's also give it a 10kg oxygen buffer; when the buffer is exhausted, all active spacewalks immediately end until it is (reasonably) refilled.

(Optional) Airlock Liquid Fitting

In case someone wants to bring extra fuel in a Liquid Cargo Tank, it could be forwarded from an appropriate Liquid Output Fitting to allow for greatly extended spacewalk sessions.  Say, from a long-term deep-space mining rocket.

-------

Finally, there is the matter of the Temporal Tear initiative.  How's that going to work in Spaced Out?  It'd be neat if this, along with other features, are added to support a deep-space mission to the Tear that might require deep-space mining to pull off.  You'd actually have to make the trip and sustain your Dupes the whole way this time.

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On 5/15/2021 at 11:32 PM, JahwsUF said:

Finally, there is the matter of the Temporal Tear initiative.  How's that going to work in Spaced Out?  It'd be neat if this, along with other features, are added to support a deep-space mission to the Tear that might require deep-space mining to pull off.  You'd actually have to make the trip and sustain your Dupes the whole way this time.

This is clever, and could be used for fun things like space puzzles. 

Unfortunately I think it's usually a bad idea development wise for new features to be tightly dependent on one another. IE, if there's a bug with X and Y depends on it then that messes up Y too. If X gets cut or reworked then Y needs to be cut or reworked. etc, etc, etc. It can be done but it's something you would want to get out of the way as early as possible, not realistic for a DLC

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I like the idea, but it has some major flaws:

1. Automation. I would rather see an automatable system, like in a non-dlc game, over player-labor high like this one. Because in this one it sounds like player will have to manually designate what to mine at the very least.

2. Too many resources or asteroid is too large. It's nice to have an alternative way to get resources, but in this particular case single run can provide so much resources that some of them will become way to cheap. There need to be some severe limits not to make lots of other routes of getting resources worthless.

3. Repeatability (low fun). Seeing the dupe mine the asteroid is nice, but with how each asteroid is just a rock to mine is not fun. If this never gets automatable, it should in the very least become more varied: like asteroid/neutronium ruins where you need to solve some logic puzzle to get to the prize.

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I really like this idea, it's very interesting, though it could use some refining;

1. Comets would be like geodes

I think of comets as very small planetoids, mostly made of materials like sand, mafic rock, etc. But, some comets could have precious materials, such as graphite, niobium, fullerene, among others. They would orbit the planetoid and only be accesible from time to time (unless you have some sort of hydrogen engine with a big amount of fuel).

2. They do have gravity

Comets would have gravity (if they didn't they would crumble to pieces), but not enough to have an atmosphere or oceans, so i don't know why you wouldn't be able to build on them.

Your idea is a really nice one, it gives functionality to some useless stuff (jet suits) and adds new things on the process!

If you wanted to automate planetoids, that is, automatically send resources between them, we would have to have some sort of interplanetary automation "thingomabob". Luckily, somebody already made a thread talking about that. Everyone's imput would be really helphul here, because this is a much needed change.

 

7 hours ago, AndreyKl said:
7 hours ago, AndreyKl said:

I like the idea, but it has some major flaws:

1. Automation. I would rather see an automatable system, like in a non-dlc game, over player-labor high like this one. Because in this one it sounds like player will have to manually designate what to mine at the very least.

2. Too many resources or asteroid is too large. It's nice to have an alternative way to get resources, but in this particular case single run can provide so much resources that some of them will become way to cheap. There need to be some severe limits not to make lots of other routes of getting resources worthless.

3. Repeatability (low fun). Seeing the dupe mine the asteroid is nice, but with how each asteroid is just a rock to mine is not fun. If this never gets automatable, it should in the very least become more varied: like asteroid/neutronium ruins where you need to solve some logic puzzle to get to the prize.

 

My ideas kinda solved your problems

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Having a mix of the old rocket system and the new might be a good solution to renewable resources. Have your rocket catch up to an comet with a mining laser module before the comet leaves the solar system. 

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22 hours ago, AndreyKl said:

I like the idea, but it has some major flaws:

1. Automation. I would rather see an automatable system, like in a non-dlc game, over player-labor high like this one. Because in this one it sounds like player will have to manually designate what to mine at the very least.

2. Too many resources or asteroid is too large. It's nice to have an alternative way to get resources, but in this particular case single run can provide so much resources that some of them will become way to cheap. There need to be some severe limits not to make lots of other routes of getting resources worthless.

3. Repeatability (low fun). Seeing the dupe mine the asteroid is nice, but with how each asteroid is just a rock to mine is not fun. If this never gets automatable, it should in the very least become more varied: like asteroid/neutronium ruins where you need to solve some logic puzzle to get to the prize.

1 Manual gameplay is intentional. Mining ore, collecting rare things like artifacts should be manual. Metal volcanoes are an alternative and are more effective since it saves dupe labor. There shouldn't be anything on the comets that you need a continuous supply of, except maybe uranium. I don't think there should be uranium volcanoes, and since it lasts so long I think it's OK for it to be manually renewable. Manually renewable resources is not something we've had in the game yet.

2. See above. I've explained the shape and composition of the comet is not the point.

3. comet variants or procedural generation should exist. Building a library of, say, 10-30 handmade comets for players to explore should be plenty.

8 hours ago, kezat said:

Having a mix of the old rocket system and the new might be a good solution to renewable resources. Have your rocket catch up to an comet with a mining laser module before the comet leaves the solar system. 

The old rocket system was bad. I don't think rockets should go back to the old abstraction system, it was not fun or believable. It was just a dumb hoop you had to jump through.

On 3/31/2021 at 12:16 PM, pether said:

Hey, that is a really nice idea!

To make it simpler (I'm not sure if better...) there could be Commet Miner rocket module that gathers all the resources from the commet. So there is no micro management, you just fly your rocket to the commet and it comes back with resources.

Also - there could be artifacts found on such rockets as currently we have no renewable source of those (and I really don't like using Pedestals for anything else...)

Old rocket system is bad.

Artifacts on comets would be great, yesh. Kinda facepalming I didn't put any on this map, it was just supposed to be a demo

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50 minutes ago, n_t_p said:

Old rocket system is bad.

Agreed, I prefer DLC one. But...

  • Some people don't like multi-base and micromanagement, so they could focus on old-style rocketry
  • If someone didn't like that solution, they could ignore it and focus on parts of the game they enjoy more
  • Vanilla rockets are bad, because it takes hundrets of cycles to setup them and the rewards are not worth it. This solution doesn't change setup time introduced in the DLC.
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7 minutes ago, pether said:
  • Vanilla rockets are bad, because it takes hundrets of cycles to setup them and the rewards are not worth it. This solution doesn't change setup time introduced in the DLC.

Even if it were easier or paid out more it would still be bad. Dupes just go into this weird stasis. Materials and resources just appear. It's so abstract it's unbelievable. It's not playing a game it's more like cookieclicker. Not even bashing cookie clicker I just don't think oni should work like that.

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On 3/31/2021 at 4:48 AM, n_t_p said:

Comets would give a renewable source of ores.

Great post and great demonstration! I had a similar idea that I posted few days ago. I copied part of it here:

"Space exploration also needs more reward and currently is lifeless. Even a mini-game like the one in Mass Effect space exploration can add much-needed life to space (see pic 1)."

Planetscanning.thumb.png.fae7b76cc6f2118d6968529abb18ebd2.png

Pic 1: You could have won rare materials by chance in Mass Effect 2 if you explored the space

If I want to build on your idea, I would suggest:

  1.  Instead of them considered moving comets, they should appear and disappear in the space maps. In this case, we should always send research rockets to space with the hope of finding one of these comets. Currently, after we see all the planetoids, we do not need to explore anymore.
  2. We should never know for sure what the materials are available on these comets. That will create a feeling of mystery and excitement.

 

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21 hours ago, n_t_p said:

Even if it were easier or paid out more it would still be bad. Dupes just go into this weird stasis. Materials and resources just appear. It's so abstract it's unbelievable. It's not playing a game it's more like cookieclicker. Not even bashing cookie clicker I just don't think oni should work like that.

You would still need to provide living condition in the the rocket, I don't want to rebuild DLC system. I'm just considering if micromanagement is required in this case or if you can just reach comet to get the resources. 

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13 minutes ago, pether said:

You would still need to provide living condition in the the rocket, I don't want to rebuild DLC system. I'm just considering if micromanagement is required in this case or if you can just reach comet to get the resources. 

Micromanagement would be required. You can't just say "I'll add a module which will do all the work for me".

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