Predestination

Predestination

Nyphur  [developer] Sep 21, 2015 @ 5:45pm
3D Ship Designer Feedback Thread
Hey guys,

We've just released the Predestination 3D Ship Designer update (V0.8.7.0) along with ship parts for the Renegades faction. The 3D ship designer lets you create your own unique ships from scratch and can be accessed from the Shipyard screen once you've built a Starbase. If you want to jump in quickly to get designing, starting a new game with the Empire Age option set to Space Exploration will start you off with a fully colonised planet and a shipyard already built.

Unlike most other ship designers that only let you attach parts to specific join points or hardpoints on a base hull, ours lets you create a design from scratch and place parts literally anywhere on your ship with complete creative freedom. The designer uses a simple drag-and-drop interface and we think it's very intuitive and a hell of a lot of fun to use, but it's your opinion that counts!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4WuWvbBT04

Please use this thread to give feedback on the 3D Ship Designer feature and to throw us any ideas that come to mind when using it. Or just share screenshots of your ship designs, as we'd love to see what people are making.

Cheers,
-- Brendan, Lead Developer
Last edited by Nyphur; Sep 22, 2015 @ 11:58am
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Showing 1-15 of 21 comments
Nyphur  [developer] Sep 21, 2015 @ 7:01pm 
Just kicking things off here with a few notes about the current designer and future features:

1) We haven't balanced any of the modules and weapons yet, so currently they call cost the same and use the same amount of power. We've balanced the cost of base hulls to make ships much bigger investments.

2) There are still plenty of weapons and modules to add, which will be added to the current tech trees and to the fourth tech era when we get around to it. Each race is also getting its own complete set of parts just like the Renegades pack.

3) All space stations are currently just using one of the crew quarters models. Customisable space stations will be added in a later patch, along with some of the more advanced features such as custom ship decals and high precision tools.

Cheers,
-- Brendan, Lead Developer
DeltaV Sep 21, 2015 @ 8:47pm 
Hey Brendan, will you be updating the non-steam version as well? I need to really get off my♥♥♥♥♥♥and request a steam key.
random16 Sep 21, 2015 @ 11:35pm 
would be nice to have the race traits so it would differ game play wise if we picked a dif race at this point it doesnt matter who you pick its all the same :(
Nyphur  [developer] Sep 22, 2015 @ 3:25am 
Originally posted by josh027:
Hey Brendan, will you be updating the non-steam version as well? I need to really get off my♥♥♥♥♥♥and request a steam key.
Hey Josh,
The non-steam version takes up to a few hours to update, so I started deploying it last night and it seems to have failed. I'm re-deploying it now, and hopefully it deploys correctly.
EDIT: V0.8.7.0 has been successfully deployed to the non-steam version. Please let me know if there are any problems with it.

Originally posted by random16:
would be nice to have the race traits so it would differ game play wise if we picked a dif race at this point it doesnt matter who you pick its all the same :(
This feature was meant to be in the previous patch but we had to delay it as it turned out to be bigger than we previously anticipated. It should make it into Friday's patch this week.

Cheers,
-- Brendan, Lead Developer
Last edited by Nyphur; Sep 22, 2015 @ 5:38am
Nyphur  [developer] Sep 22, 2015 @ 12:29pm 
Thought I'd share a little experiment I just did in the ship designer. We haven't put in the dedicated parts for space stations yet, but that hasn't stopped me from trying to make one in the designer anyway! Here's my attempt at a Shipyard:

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=522981332

I used the weapon mount at max size as if it were a space dock, and added plasma manifolds connected by solonoids on the sides to make it look a bit different. Then I added a little partly built frigate inside the docking area, and extended the bay opening with a battle bridge and engineer deck. To better capture the sense of scale, I filled the bay with teeny weeny little cargo pods, conduits, weapons, armour parts etc, added some scaled down transceivers, and then used an invisible plane to place added a tiny little shuttle outside the bay.

I'd love to see what anyone else is coming up with!

Cheers,
-- Brendan, Lead Developer
Last edited by Nyphur; Sep 22, 2015 @ 12:35pm
Kitsune Sep 26, 2015 @ 9:45am 
Wow that really looks amazing. The ONE thing I thought was good about Galactic Civ 3 was their ship designer and this one looks just as good or better. Being able to freely add, orient, and resize components is great. A couple questions:

1 Can we change color or add textures to components?
2 Will position of components matter for combat damage?
3 Will components break off and/or disappear as the ship is damaged?
Nyphur  [developer] Sep 27, 2015 @ 1:01pm 
Originally posted by Kitsune:
Wow that really looks amazing. The ONE thing I thought was good about Galactic Civ 3 was their ship designer and this one looks just as good or better. Being able to freely add, orient, and resize components is great. A couple questions:

1 Can we change color or add textures to components?
2 Will position of components matter for combat damage?
3 Will components break off and/or disappear as the ship is damaged?
Hey Kitsune,

Thanks for the kind words, we're very pleased with how the ship designer has turned out! To answer your questions:

1) At the moment you can't change the colour or texture of components in-game, but we wrote our own shader for the ships the only thing stopping us from implementing these features is really dev time. Colour and texture swapping isn't part of our current release plan, so if we do it then it'll come after release. The textures are fully moddable now and we'll release more information on modding after release too.

2) Position doesn't matter for any game mechanics currently, and for the sake of keeping ship design simple on a strategic level I think we'll keep it that way. The only thing that matters is the orientation of turret-based weapons. When you add a Laser Cannon to a design, you'll see that the grid lights up to show the weapon's firing arc and rotating the weapon will rotate the firing arc too. That way you could come up with a design that has backward-facing weapons or side-facing weapons, which might be useful for missile defense or play another part in your strategy.

3) I really want to implement a destruction animation system that makes the models break apart and explode into bits, but right now that's not in the game and we don't have the dev time scheduled to add it before release. This will likely be something we come back to after release or in the polishing phase running up to release, but as it's cosmetic it'll be a low priority.

I hope that answers your questions adequately, and please let me know if you have any other questions or problems!

Cheers,
- Brendan, Lead Developer
G-Solo Oct 25, 2015 @ 8:34pm 
Brendan, I know that I can't wish too much, but it's hard for me to enjoy the 3D ship designer that you implemented to this game. The most important thing is the way that player can put the block anywhere. Well, it give freedom, but also harder for me (as player) to put it at the place where I want it to be.

The second point is the texture. It's dark dan bland. I know that it's still the earliest stage. but still with the free block placement, make me hard to make a decent ship.

Why don't make it simpler? I like the pictures of ship designer that you showed in your old predestination website, where it still only box, half box, etc without texture, but give me a feel like playing lego? If it use a lego kind of grid that I can put my ship part easily. Altough it limit freedom, but help players to create their own dream ship.
Last edited by G-Solo; Oct 25, 2015 @ 11:09pm
Nyphur  [developer] Oct 30, 2015 @ 10:24am 
Originally posted by G-Solo:
Brendan, I know that I can't wish too much, but it's hard for me to enjoy the 3D ship designer that you implemented to this game. The most important thing is the way that player can put the block anywhere. Well, it give freedom, but also harder for me (as player) to put it at the place where I want it to be.

The second point is the texture. It's dark dan bland. I know that it's still the earliest stage. but still with the free block placement, make me hard to make a decent ship.

Why don't make it simpler? I like the pictures of ship designer that you showed in your old predestination website, where it still only box, half box, etc without texture, but give me a feel like playing lego? If it use a lego kind of grid that I can put my ship part easily. Altough it limit freedom, but help players to create their own dream ship.
Thanks for the feedback! I'd like to address each of your points separately:

Difficulty: You mentioned that you found it difficult to place blocks where you want to, and that's a fair complaint. Other space 4X games with node or join-point based ship designers restrict players to specific points on the hull, but those points are on exact edges and angles so they're perfect every time. It can definitely be trickier to place or orient items precisely where you want in our designer (though zooming in a bit can help as the precision is screen-space based), and we will be adding an advanced mode to the editor with some precision tools in a future update. These tools will let you edit the exact coordinates of the object and orientation angles, for example.

Textures: The current blocks are all for the Renegades faction, so the rusted and dirty design is part of their aesthetic. We may update their textures in the future and will definitely be improving the lighting model for ships to make them less dark and more dynamic. The other races will have very different design aesthetics and different textures when we release them, which may be more to your liking.

Lego editor: The lego-style ship designer was only ever a design concept, and we got feedback on it from a lot of people before starting work. The feedback and our own views were that every part being a cube or half-cube wouldn't look good, so when we started work on the ship designer we used a similar design with different shaped parts covered in join-points. The truth is that this was very difficult to develop and required a lot of work on each individual model to add and test the join-points. It would have made modding very difficult, it slowed down our modelling process, and in early testing we found that it tended to lead to the same designs every time.

Though it is more complex under the hood, the freeform designer is actually a lot easier for our ship artist to work with and will be much easier for people to mod. It's also not feasible for us to spend months re-engineering the ship designer from scratch at this point even if we wanted to. We're pretty pleased with how the designer has turned out mechanically, and think it'll be vastly improved by the addition of new ship parts and a few precision tools we plan to release in the future. I also hope that when the game officially launches we eventually get people creating their dream ship designs to share with others online.

Cheers,
-- Brendan, Lead Developer
G-Solo Nov 4, 2015 @ 10:45pm 
Brendan, there is line in the middle of the design that prevent me to put the part at the centre of the workshop. Errr... can put make the center part of the ship to stick at the middle of the line? To make the ship symetric?
Nyphur  [developer] Nov 5, 2015 @ 6:18pm 
Originally posted by G-Solo:
Brendan, there is line in the middle of the design that prevent me to put the part at the centre of the workshop. Errr... can put make the center part of the ship to stick at the middle of the line? To make the ship symetric?
Ah, I think I know what you mean. The vertical plane cuts through the exact centre of the horizontal plane, so you can put the object you want as close as 1 pixel from the centre. The best way to make the design symmetrical though is to place your base part, then single left click on it to highlight it, and then use the Mirror options to mirror it along the X, Y or Z axis and make the design symmetrical.

Cheers,
-- Brendan, Lead Developer
G-Solo Nov 6, 2015 @ 12:53am 
Yeah, that vertical plane cuts. If only I can put a part at the centre of the plane, and not mirror it.... For example, if I want to put a thruster part at the centre of the ship, that plane will hinders my attempt. I don't have any problem to put it at the side and mirror it. But my ship will be seen as a 2 thrusters ship rather than a single thruster at the centre.

If you can make a part to be put on the centre of that vertical plane, I will be very grateful. Well, sometime I want to put it at the middle of the vertical plane :D
Last edited by G-Solo; Nov 6, 2015 @ 1:58am
Nyphur  [developer] Nov 6, 2015 @ 10:09am 
Originally posted by G-Solo:
Yeah, that vertical plane cuts. If only I can put a part at the centre of the plane, and not mirror it.... For example, if I want to put a thruster part at the centre of the ship, that plane will hinders my attempt. I don't have any problem to put it at the side and mirror it. But my ship will be seen as a 2 thrusters ship rather than a single thruster at the centre.

If you can make a part to be put on the centre of that vertical plane, I will be very grateful. Well, sometime I want to put it at the middle of the vertical plane :D
I see how that could be useful, right now the two axes appear until you place your first ship part so that vertical plane could get in the way. There's actually a way to do what you want now with the tools provided. There's a cosmetic part called "Flat Plane" which is just a flat hex that is flagged as invisible so it won't show up in Fleet Combat. You could put that part roughly on the centre of the horizontal plane and then the vertical plane will disappear and you can put your thruster in the very centre of the stage.

I've just tested this and it works quite well. You can also use the Mirror tool to mirror your thruster on the X axis so you can tell when your part is centred correctly, and then turn the mirroring off once you've got it exactly centred. In the future we'll be adding some high-precision tools that will let you snap to a grid and manually enter coordinates and angles, but this workaround works very well for now :D. Hope that helps!

Cheers,
-- Brendan, Lead Developer
Last edited by Nyphur; Nov 6, 2015 @ 10:09am
mikeCK Nov 11, 2015 @ 2:23pm 
I love that dusty/worn dark look. Makes it looks like it's actually been in a few fights
lizdanfayers Jan 15, 2016 @ 2:48am 
Been playing for a while now and have even modded new race. Anyway I just started up game and expected to go back into the ship editor and finish my battleship. My old firefly frigate is there but my half completed flag ship is gone. Is this something to do with the development? or A problem.
Anyway good game. Finished tech tree and have about nine systems under my thumb. Time to explore more.

Regards
Dragon Dan
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