Hi everyone. My online nick is Skateblind and I am usually hanging out at pspuae.com or #pspuae on the Efnet IRC network .
Ive just recently started work on a 2D space game and have the main space engine just about finished. This is a list of what's basically completed so you know where I am in development:
Flight using thrusters
Planets orbit the sun at different speeds and radius's, not sure if I should add moons though as they wont really be needed but would add some more depth.
Planets have working gravity that pulls the players ship towards it, the strength of the pull is based on the planets size.
You can leave the system and fly to another one in hyperspace mode(see below)
Hyperspace mode is basically the same as flying around the planets in the system, but instead you fly to another system and press a key to enter it. A new map then appears with that systems sun and planets that have been predifined in a file. Might add random creation of systems at a later stage.
You can scan the surrounding area and if there is a planet close enough then its details such as name, size, atmosphere, trade goods and prices, etc. will come up, otherwise it will say 'Nothing in range'.
There is also a map system to show you where you are in relation to the planets or systems, depending on which mode your in, Hyperspace(systems) Systemspace(planets)
There are a few other things like being able to speed up time and watch the planets orbit the sun quickly and the display of the current Earth time(accurate with the simulated Earth's orbit).
Ok, so now you can see I am not a slacker looking for someone to do the work for me, please do not leave any distasteful replies.
What I need help with is the trading aspect of my game, I'm not sure how to simulate an economy without having to code lots of difficult maths or having too much randomness. I was considering having a base price for each product that is different from planet to planet. So here on earth fuel would cost 1.0 credits per unit, but on mars it would be 2.3 credits per unit. This would be fine but the player could then very easily go back and forth and make lots of money.
If I were to add any random factor into the design to stop this flaw, then the whole trading mechanic would be a guessing game because you would never know if your goods are going to be profitable by the time you get their.
I want to make it profitable to trade, but I need to make sure that its not too easy to do. Maybe other elements of my game need to come into play, like how far away the goods have come from or if the goods prices stay the same, then maybe have space pirates that make trading a risky and costly venture.
I just want something very basic, but fun and interesting enough to keep the player interested enough even if it was a game by itself. This is a very important aspect of my game and will basically make or break it.
If anyone can come up with some decent pseudo or USEFUL ideas then I would be forever in your debt.