Hi everyone, we’ve had a lot of requests for more info on battles, so we’re pleased to be able to give you some sneak preview screenshots from our early testing – a taste of what’s to come…
Our developers have been working on the core battle engine, shields, lasers, and some pretty awesome rocket launchers! We’re very excited with the progress so far, and are looking forward to getting some videos out to you soon.
Frigate vs Fleet Skirmish
In this scenario a battle has broken out between a frigate and a fleet of four smaller ships. The combatants exchange laser and rocket fire, before the action eventually comes to an explosive conclusion!
Rocket launcher: from design to battle
In Beyond Dark you choose which weapons to equip your ships with. Ships can be designed to serve a specific purpose, or for more general use.
In the following images, we first see rocket launchers being placed by the player on a frigate. These rocket launchers are then seen in action in battle, firing upon the enemy fleet.
In both of the above battles the larger frigate was defeated by the smaller fleet. This was something we manually configured to happen, but of course it’s always possible that the smaller fleet could win anyway, depending on the condition of the participants at the start of the battle, equipped weaponry and tactics.
We’ve also been experimenting with visual effects relating to shield activity. Shields can absorb/reduce the destructive force of certain weapons against a ship.
These in-game screenshots are from one of the very first battle tests. You can see the ship on the right is taking laser fire from a distant attacker. The shield is glowing to illustrate that it is actively working, but is eventually eroded and/or sufficient damage has been done to the ship because it then explodes!
How battles will work
Beyond Dark takes place in a persistent universe, where the game is running 24/7 for all players, whether they are online or not. Therefore, an underlying battle AI was the core requirement for battles to be able to take place in the absence of either player to act on their behalf – and where we’ve started.
For all of your ships and fleets, you’ll be able to set very granular orders for how they will perform in battle, for example:
- Fleet formations (read more here)
- Whether to avoid or engage certain enemies based on strength, condition etc.
- Which ship classes to prioritise fire against and the weapons to use
- Strategic manouvers
- Retreat conditions
Over recent months, we’ve had a lot of community feedback on battles, including this card on our Trello board.
Apart from AI vs AI which we’ve now started, the other potential battle modes discussed were AI vs Player and Player vs Player. AI vs Player has currently been ruled out because it would be unfair.
Player vs Player is a possibility for the future, depending on demand, but would only be available in situations where both players were online and agree to manual battle. You can read more on this here.
No Beta date yet
We’re all eager for Beta to begin, but we’re not quite there yet. We need to get a few more tasks out of the way, at which point we’ll have a clearer view of how close we are, and be able to put a date on it. We added an FAQ question to explain why it’s taking so long.