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NeonXSZ
Intravenous Software  [dezvoltator] 25 ian., 2013 @ 2:20pm
Full Details on Neon's Upgrade System and Hulls
Introduction
Here you can find all the cool stuff about the upgrade system.

Neon already includes over 650 upgrades.

Upgrades give you the power to tailor your ship to your unique playstyle. You can take a small fast fighter, and load it up with the best shield upgrades, the best shield boosters, and then put all your cash into overclocking it's shield slot to create a totally unique heavily shielded fighter.

You could take a destroyer and compensate for it's slower speed by concentrating your upgrades on engine boosters and engine overclocking. Or maybe you want to fill up all it's miscellaneous slots with weapon boosters so you rip everything to shreads.

The options for uniquely tuning your ship are endless and due to the limited number of upgrade slots it's all a balancing act....



Balancing your upgrades
Every upgrade in Neon has a mass and an energy requirement. Maybe you want to use that monster new shield module you just found but it's going to weigh more and use more energy than the lower level one you have installed.

You see, mass directly effects your speed. So soon you will find that you are getting a little slow because of these new higher level upgrades, so then you are going to need to upgrade your engines to compensate. But the new engine is going to use more energy, and so are the other upgrades, so now you need a bigger Energy Storage Unit.

Now your ship is struggling to produce enough energy so you will want to upgrade your Energy Regeneration Unit (Reactor) to create more energy. Yet, these weigh more also, so you are slowing down again.

Trying to find the perfect balance of upgrade levels to fine tune your ship to meet your goals is a deep and challenging system.



Collecting Upgrades
How do I get me some upgrades?
Easy. Kill stuff.
Every ship in the game explodes with a loot explosion containing a piece of every upgrade it has installed. It will also drop a fragment of it's weapon and even it's hull.
Collect these up and you will soon have a complete upgrade that you can install in your own ship or a new hull that you can fly yourself. You can even stop off at shops and pay to complete an upgrade.



That all sounds too complex for me!
Dont worry little one. :)
Neon is set up so that if you use all upgrades of the same level your ship will be balanced, and it's not as complex as it might seem.

The hardcore players will look for unique ways to get the most out of their ships and make them truly unique but those that just like to blow stuff up can do that without worrying about the deeper nerdy stuff.



So what about ship hulls?
Neon currently has 32 different hulls (or spaceships) that you can loot and fly yourself.

Each hull offers a different playstyle to the last. The fighter class hulls are lighter, so they go faster. Their engine and engine booster upgrade slots are overclocked by default so their engines are more effective.

The same is true for all hulls. Each hull has differently overclocked upgrade slots. So destroyers have heavily overclocked shields and energy units, missile frigates have overclocked missiles and much higher missile storage capacity and missile creation speed.

This allows NeonXSZ to offer the full breadth of spaceship combat from the most nimble fighters to big heavy brute like ships and every combination in between.

Each hull also has a varying number of weapon turrets. The F2 fighter only has one turret but is the fastest combat ship in the game. It compensates for this with extra missile versatility and overclocking across every upgrade slot. A large destroyer has four turrets for quadruple damage, and very large shield overclocking, but it's heavy and slow so it needs it.

With 30 different hulls Neon can give you a ship that perfectly suits your style of play and then you can tweak and mould it to perfection, or push it to do things it was never designed to do.



The beauty of Miscellaneous Upgrade Slots
These are where the real fun begins when it comes to creating that unique ship design.

The various hulls range from having no Miscellaneous Slots (the first ship you own) all the way through to 8 slots in some of the highest level destroyers.

What makes them special is that they can take any type of booster upgrade, and will later also accept the gadget and toy upgrades. So let's say you just found or bought the Main Gun Booster Module Version 2 and you have 3 Miscellaneous slots in the hull you are flying.

You can now put that Main Gun Booster into all 3 of them, and triple the boost effect.

Alternatively you could put three Shield Booster modules into those slots and have much better shields.

Or you could mix them up and use a different upgrade in each slot. This allows you to bend the original design of a ship towards your own unique design.



Overclocking your slots
Although we mentioned that the hulls all have different overclocking values it doesn't end there.

You can dock at a garage and pay for increased overclocking. This is done using Carbon NanoTubes that you collect during fighting and they allow you to upgrade your hulls in even more unique ways.

If you overclock a Shield Upgrade Slot by 5% it means any Shield Upgrade you put in that slot will be 5% more effective. Overclock it to 20% and all shield upgrades will be 20% more effective.

You can even overclock your miscellaneous slots and push those unique upgrades even further.



The boring techy bit. NERD ALERT!!
For those that are interested I'll outline the entire system so you can have a better idea how it all works.


Core Upgrade Slots
Every ship in the game has 6 core upgrade slots:

Energy Storage
Energy Regeneration (Reactor)
Shields
Shield Regeneration
Engines
Engine Boosters

There are 80 different levels for each of the above upgrades in the game.
Example:
Level 1 Reactor gives 150 energy storage.
Level 80 Reactor gives 9.5million energy storage!

You also have a single missile upgrade slot that determines the currently used missiles.



Miscellaneous Upgrade Slots
Most ships have at least one Miscellaneous slot. Higher level ships have up to eight.

Miscellaneous slots take Miscellaneous upgrades. These can boost your core systems (listed above), increase individual weapon damage, increase all weapon damage, or add extra features to the ship. You must choose which Misc upgrades to install in those slots and so you can configure your ship however you want.



Average Tech Level vs Damage
All the weapons are balanced. They all have a use in different situations and will increase in power automatically as you increase the tech level of your installed upgrades. The higher your average tech level the more damage you will do.



Buying Upgrades
You can also dock at Upgrade Shops, Dealerships, and Armories to purchase new upgrades outright or to complete any that you have already collected fragments from. The more fragments of an upgrade you have already found the cheaper it will be.



Balanced Ships
The 32 ships in the game are also balanced allowing them all to be useful throughout the entire game.

No ship hull will ever become outdated. They are all balanced but all work in very different ways so you will need to adapt your playstyle to get the most out of each one. This means that as you level up you will unlock a whole garage of cool ships to fly around in and can swap between them all at will without feeling like you are underpowered.


I hope that helps to highlight the very deep upgrade mechanic behind the game. Although Neon is focussed on achieving the best spaceship dogfighting possible, it has an almost endlessly deep level of nerd baller goodness underneath.







Editat ultima dată de Intravenous Software; 9 sept., 2013 @ 4:57pm
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HD188753 26 ian., 2013 @ 5:03am 
"F1 Fighter" - Would that happen to be a refferance to the F1 key..?
Intravenous Software  [dezvoltator] 26 ian., 2013 @ 5:51am 
No, F1 = Fighter 1
M1 = Missile Fighter 1
C1 = Corvette 1
etc

The game has F1, F1+, F2, F2+, F3, F3+ Fighters

You get the idea. To swap into a new hull, the player needs to dock at a Quantum Teleporter that they will find all over the spacestation.

Theoretically the game can do an instant swap on a hotkey though. I already have an option to enable hull swapping anywhere (not just when docked) but I only use that during testing.

But if you thought it sounded like a cool idea to be able to swap hulls mid fight (with a hotkey) then I actually agree with you. It would need some additional coding to work cleanly though as we need to consider all the upgrades installed in each hull and how they swap around or get recorded. That system is not quite robust enough yet to implement hotkeyed hullswaps in the way the player would want.

Forcing the player to dock to swap hulls allows them to be near a garage to also tweak their upgrade loadout on the new hull.
Megaflux 9 sept., 2013 @ 3:23pm 
i gotta say swapping hulls on the fly sounds alot like cheating... though i guess nothing has physical proprties in the game anyways (its all energy right?).

be kinda like switching to from a tank to a mage in most fantasy rpg's or a ferrari to a hummer in a racing game.
Editat ultima dată de Megaflux; 9 sept., 2013 @ 3:23pm
Intravenous Software  [dezvoltator] 9 sept., 2013 @ 4:44pm 
It's all code, not energy. You are in cyberspace. It's all code inside the mind of a super AI.

Also be aware that this article is very old. This system is now extremely robust and battle tested. The ability to hot swap hulls hasn't been added yet, there is a new feature coming that will allow something very similar to this but is far more interesting.
Editat ultima dată de Intravenous Software; 9 sept., 2013 @ 4:47pm
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