2/1/2021 in devlog
All around the galaxy company headquarters are being erected and Technician-tier spaceships are being engineered.
Some time ago, unfortunately I don't remember exactly when and where, we talked about caps for bases. It was in the context of micro-managing a lot of bases and missing quality of life features. There are/were many experienced players that have 20+ bases and keeping them supplied with consumables alone requires a major effort, even more so considering that until recently everything had to be done with two ships and shipping contracts.
We strongly think that Prosperous Universe is not a single-player-build-as-many-bases-as-you-can kind of game, where every player integrates their bases vertically. The current universe run has shown that without actively managing/limiting the amount of bases, it can get out of hand pretty quickly, and players will quit due to the amount of micromanagement. We started to implement some quality-of-life improvements over the last months and will add a new feature with the Early Access release that regulates base caps: Company Headquarters.
I spent the week working on the server parts of the feature. Here is an outline what the feature is about:
Your first base will automatically become the headquarters. Depending on its location, all your production lines will receive a certain production efficiency boost. For example (this is subject to change), building within Castillo-Ito faction space will grant a 5% bonus in manufacturing. The headquarters can be moved to another location every 30 days, and thus allows you to restructure your empire if need be.
Initially the headquarters will permit two bases. The HQ can be leveled up by paying an increasing amount of construction prefabs (B-Fabs for the first levels, then L-Fabs, then R-Fabs, ..). Each level will permit one more base to be constructed and every 5-ish levels will also increase the production queue slots by two.
We have received your feedback that the entry barrier to ship building is still pretty high at the moment. While things will improve with reduced market maker prices for the electronics parts, we decided it would be a good idea to have an additional step below the current "entry-level ships" as well. So I spent some time last week figuring out how to best integrate that and enable Technician-tier ships.
I ended up introducing several new materials, such as a glass-based STL engine and low-level tiers of the crew quarters and command bridge modules. The new minimum-cost ships won't be able to perform FTL jumps and won't be very fast, but you'll actually be able to create a fully STL-capable ship without it requiring any materials created by Engineers or Scientists!
Contrary to some other "news sources", I am not running any ads on Tinder or Match.com... yet. As I mentioned last week, Early Access is coming along quite well in terms of marketing materials and campaigns. We have 3 influencers in the pipeline including Spacedock, that will have another video out for us on Saturday. I don't want sound like a broken record but a lot of your tips that you have been sending me have been extremely helpful, so don't be hesitant to send me some of your favorite YT/Twitch channels :)
I also appreciate the feedback on the January Newsletter I sent out and will be optimizing it for future emails. Don't forget about the FA key giveaway that we are still running on Facebook and Twitter (message me on Discord if you have neither).
Some details aside, I was finally able to wrap up the work on the Prosperous Universe account management system (aka "The Hub"). Most importantly, the subscriptions I mentioned in last week's issue are now fully functional. I also added the interface required for our First Access supporters to be able to activate their post-First Access game time. We heard some concerns in the past from people who wished to only activate their game time at a later point in time, and not directly when Early Access launches. For example, you might want to wait until the game has matured even more, or a big new feature has been added, or when another reset takes place. We took these concerns to heart and instead of automatically activating your game time on release day, you will now find a banner in "The Hub" if you have FA game time left to activate. Then, a single click of a button will add it to your account.