Cluster

Cluster is a VR game I’m working on. It is turn based and inspired by the old stellar conquest board game.

I’m going to use this page as the anchor for game information and status on my ongoing work. Details of what is going on at any given time will show up as posts on the main page of pandamallet.

Code is hosted on github and I’m currently developing this in unity. I don’t expect this to ever be of broad interest and I know that developing a turn based board game in a VR environment is more than a little quirky.

Overview

The game is played in a spherical cluster of stars where the color of each star is known to everyone at the start of the game but the planetary system is not.

The set up involves star gates that were left behind by an ancient race. These gates open at random times, sending those who go through to a new area of space.

The gates open for a short period of time and limit the technology that may transit the gate. This results in races stationing groups of ships near gates in areas they control containing a colony transport, scouting resources and small warships.

When a gate opens, the task-force goes through the gate and works to colonize the star cluster on the far end. Generally there will be multiple groups entering the cluster from far-flung gates around the periphery when an opening happens.

Once ships are on the far side of the gate and the gate has closed again, they must establish colonies, develop the infrastructure to build more advanced technologies and fight against the others who also entered the cluster.

Given time with friendly forces on either side of the gate, it is possible to permanently open the connection. This is the ultimate goal of the invasion, but only the winner in the competition for the cluster will have the time to make this happen.

Game Play

The cluster is full of stars

Each star has zero or more planets that are interesting

Each planet has a range of habitability, resources, population capacity

Players have access to ships

  • Colony Transports packed full of hibernating colonists
  • Scouts that have no weapons but unlimited range and good sensors
  • Three sizes of warship that are armed but have limited range

Players can build out technology

  • Faster ship speed
  • Extended ship range
  • Improved ship weaponry
  • Local defenses
  • Improved industrial production
  • More perhaps?

Players can build infrastructure

  • Factories
  • Ships
  • Defense Installations

Beginning

Each player enters at a star-gate with some number of colony transports, some number of scouts and some number of the smallest warships.

There is a nav beacon at the gate to allow your warships and colony transports to make it to a few stars.

The game should probably ensure that there are some ‘good’ stars in range.

View of the Cluster

You can see

  • All star colors
  • All beacons
  • All fleets in transit but not the contents of other player’s fleets
  • Planet types at stars you’ve visited
  • Full information in systems where you have colonies
  • Mostly full information in systems where you have a scout
  • Somewhat full information in systems where you have a non-scout ship
  • Last known information for systems you visited but no longer have units present.
  • Possibly historical tracks from ships
  • Beacon spheres
  • Dust clouds

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