Transcript generously provided by Nocturnal_Nick in this Reddit thread.

A link to the episode can be found here:

Questions and Answers

Question 1 - SQ42 commendation carryover

Will there be medals and rank in SQ42? After we complete the campaign will we be able to frame all the medals, badges, final rank and anything else we earn and display it in our hangar or home?


Answer 1

Yes, definitely. This has been asked in the past, but yes you'll be able to frame them like we had in the original Wing Commander. It also goes along with the sense of in-fiction achievements and rewards, where we have a medal display case rather than an abstract achievement screen. We'll also have some exploration rewards like, say, little snow-globes from different cities/planets etc. One little wrinkle here, is that we're toying with the idea that you can play SQ42 alongside the PU rather than just before, so you might have sort of a campaign diary where you play SQ42 as a previous version of yourself, and what you do in SQ42 unlocks things for you in the PU as you're filling in your backstory with it.

Chris Roberts

Question 2 - Artistic look of Jump Points

Can you tell us a little about how you envision the artistic look and feel of moving through a jump point? We have seen everything from light filled "tunnels" that you surf, ala the Wing Commander movie, Stargate, or Freelancer, to streaking stars in Star Wars and Star Trek. Do you plan something visually along those lines, or do you have a unique artistic twist up your sleeve that you don't mind sharing with us?

–Void Stalker

Answer 2

We're actually taking an early look at the jump-point worm-hole travel. We have two basic forms of fast-travelling in space at the moment, the first is jump-hole travel, so you go through a fold in space, and the second is Quantum travel which is the "in system" fast travel where your ship goes into a fast-mode. One way to look at why the engines on the back of your ship are so large compared to the little manoeuvring thrusters is that their primary function is to get you into Quantum travel which is about .2c or a little faster. You can only do Quantum drive in a straight line, we have a cool mechanic planned for that, including engaging or avoiding engagements while travelling. The drives will take some time to power up before you reach Quantum travel, and you've got to be lined up with the destination, and stay lined up for a certain time or distance. The engines are creating a massive gravitational field for you to reach those speeds, which requires a lot of power so you might be vulnerable considering you're not dodging fire either. Anyone that gets in front of you might be able to break your quantum drive build-up too. That's our in-system fast travel anyway.

Jump point travel is used to get to completely new systems/areas of space, and the idea we've talked about here is kind of like surfing a huge wave like on the north shore of Hawaii, so it's like time and space moving around inside this wave or tunnel, with holes into regular space and other potential obstacles making it challenging to navigate for the first time. We're also thinking that over time the navigation data of a jump point might become out of date and need to be re-mapped manually. Some might be very stable and last a long time, where others might be so unstable the data is pretty much only good for that one jump, so might need to always be navigated manually. There are some that support bigger ships where there might be a jump point that's small and unstable enough that you really need a manoeuvrable ship small enough to go through, which might get you somewhere others can't get to or at least could give you a shortcut over a longer, more stable route. If you were an info-runner these would be ideal.

Chris Roberts

Question 3 - Role of capital ships

Can you tell us more about how you see the role of capital ships in the game? Do you see them as viable exploration, mining or trading vessels, suitable for diverse uses, or will they be strictly combat oriented?


Answer 3

I think it depends on how you want to use it! Obviously some of the more combat-oriented capital ships are ideal for that role, but they also have cargo holds for trading, and exploration functions as they're armoured and are fairly self-reliant etc. So I definitely think you'll be able to use it for various purposes. Mining might be difficult, but seeing as they have their own hangars you could have smaller mining ships on board to do the work and just offload the cargo into the capital ship. You never know what add-ons we'll do, for the modular systems on the capital ships are huge, so there might be a mining laser and a processing plant or something.

At the moment the Retaliator is serving as our modular prototyping ship, it's been built in such a way that you could maybe get rid of one of the torpedo rooms and change it to, say living quarters or cargo for example. I definitely think you could change a capital ship to do whatever you want to do as long as the parts are available.

Chris Roberts

Question 4 - Theft vs reclamation

Where is the line drawn in legalities inside the Verse when it comes to theft vs reclaiming? Will this depend on when players eject?


Answer 4

I don't know, that's a good question. In terms of whether you're marked to being in a stolen ship as opposed to someone who might have just found a ship and reclaimed it... I don't know! I think we'll try to handle it is, say if you were shooting them until they ejected, that would count as stealing the ship. If you were aligned to a group that shot the ship, that'd be stealing as well, but if you weren't witness to the events leading to it being left there, and you're not aligned with a party that was involved, potentially that would be counted as a reclamation. It depends I guess, there will be lots of edge cases. We haven't fleshed out the various rules for this one yet, but rest assured we'll try to make it fair. We're of course constantly tweaking things in AC now, and that sort of thing won't stop any time soon.

Chris Roberts

Question 5 - Trading system

Can you please go in depth about the PU trading system? Will you make profit without ever leaving your ship, or will it be more complex where you have to unload your cargo and take it to shops trying to sell it?


Answer 5

When you land on planets, a lot of the unloading of cargo is done via a cargo manifest and handled by the local commodities broker, so you won't have to do a lot of manual unloading/loading of cargo. There will be some kind of special style cargo, like contraband or smuggled goods, where you might have to find a buyer for that particular item rather than just going through a vanilla commodities broker. Most of the time it'll be handled in the background, and you'll negotiate prices/amounts using your manifest with the local commodities broker, they'll buy it then offload it from your ship. But there will be some places where you land where there might not be big infrastructure, so you might have to load some cargo into, say, your rover and take that to a camp a few kilometres away, or maybe deliver some cargo to a lone explorer out there somewhere. Most of the big trading stuff will be done in a higher level way, which is kind of how it'd be done in real life, we thought that always unloading it manually could get pretty boring.

Chris Roberts

Question 6 - Ship sensors sync with MobiGlas

Are there any plans to have our ship sensors synched to our mobiglas? This would allow us to periodically check up on our exterior surroundings while we are exploring interior area and make sure we're not left stranded.

–Cpt. Darkstar

Answer 6

Yeah, I think you'd have your ship computer potentially linked to your suit visor or mobiglas, maybe not its full functionality, but definitely some of it. You might be able to look up nav-maps or courses you could chart before doing the final entry back on your ship. You could have an alarm on your ship that warns you if someone boards your ship while you're exploring say a derelict ship in space. There are some cool things we have planned for that, in fact today I was looking at a prototype we have for depressurising your cockpit, opening it and EVA'ing out to a derelict ship, opening it and going inside, seeing what happened, getting a ships log, and meanwhile a vanduul attack happens and you have to rush back to your ship to get involved/get out. AC is sort of the test-bed for a lot of the ship-flying stuff we have planned for the PU and SQ42, so down the road we'll start to add some more scenario-like missions like that to AC that might be Co-Op or single player before they're all utilised in the PU. These are things we are looking at doing in AC looking forward towards 2.0.

Chris Roberts

Question 7 - Tiered organizations

Will there be Tiered Factions, Governmental Organisations and career opportunities within them?


Answer 7

Yes, definitely. We have an organisation system in place, and really the governmental organisations are just sort of NPC versions of the player driven ones already in place. Both of these will be fleshed out with the ability to manage resources, pay people, collect fees etc. The UEE, or the Merchants Guild etc will all be built inside the same sort of framework. There might be an instance where you may only be able to take a bounty hunter mission if you're a member of that guild, or maybe it'll be aligned with certain other guilds, so they might not accept you if you were a member of an opposing guild. So yes, we'll have all those things, career opportunities and all the rest.

Chris Roberts

Question 8 - Alien currency

With there being other Alien races, does that mean that there will be other currencies with a need for currency exchange offices?


Answer 8

I think different races would potentially have different currencies, and there would be an exchange between them, say UEC and whatever the Banu have. But at the moment we'll have it as an exchange rate where traders would take UEC to the value of their own currency, at least at first. That'll save you from having, maybe, 3 or 4 different currencies in your pocket at any one time. But longer term, who knows!

Chris Roberts

Question 9 - Rover limitations

Will rovers have limitations on the area that they can explore due to factors such as power, fuel drains or map barriers? Also, will they be able to be destroyed?


Answer 9

Yes, there will be some limitations like power or fuel, but the most important will be map barriers. In the current system we don't have a map that covers say, the entire surface of the planet. Instead we have something that's, say, 16km2 or maybe even 30km2 depending on how ambitious we get with our little map areas. So maybe we'd put mountain ranges or things that would block you. The rovers are a vehicle just like a space-ship is so they have damage models and can be destroyed in the same way.

Chris Roberts

Question 10 - New ships from insurance quicker by fee

As stated previously when you lose a larger or rarer ship it may take longer for a new one to arrive in your hangar. Will we have the ability to pay UEC to fast track our ships manufacturing and receive it sooner?

–Talon Karrade

Answer 10

I don't know, good question. We haven't thought about that, right now we've just got it worked out on supply and demand, so if you've got a pretty common ship and there are plenty around it might be replaced instantaneously, whereas if you have a rarer ship that is only manufactured by say, a certain shipyard or takes longer to make each one, you'd have to wait a bit longer. We haven't thought about paying more to fast-track it, it's a bit to early to say what would work and what wouldn't. Obviously you want some kind of penalty for losing it, but you don't want it to be frustrating all the time. We want it to be at least a little realistic, a battleship doesn't get built instantaneously on a production line, so it'll take a bit longer!

Chris Roberts


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