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Sci-Fi Ore Series

Discussion in 'Released and WIP Mods' started by doncdxx, Aug 31, 2016.

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This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.
  1. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    Quick Links
    Mod collection
    A Map with all the mods
    (Links updated August 16, 2017)

    So there you are having just finished your awesome ship. You're ready to go boldly on a journey to seek out new stuff when you realize there really isn't any. Maybe you'll run into other players or NPC pirates, but the possibilities are few. Looking at the planets in the distance you consider going there, but why? They look cool, but there's nothing special or unique about them to make them worth exploring. This mod series aims to change that.

    This base mods in the series adds 10 new planets (really it's 8 planets, 2 moons) each with a specific ore found only on them. These ores are able to be used to make new thrusters, reactors, gyros, and more.

    The series has a tier system, but is designed for non-linear progression. The base mods add 6 tiers of advancement. 2 tiers of planets (by default) and 4 tiers of alloys in the 2 accompanying mods.

    The tier system is a simple algorithm with room for artistic intent. The rules for any modder to make an addition that I'll consider an official add-on to the series will be posted soon. To be "official" a mod just has to comply with the algorithm closely enough to maintain the intended balance.

    New Industry
    New industry blocks have been added to prevent the mods from cluttering up the assembler.
    There's a new assembler for tier 1-4 materials, Exotic Material Assembler
    There's an alloy furnace, Exotic Alloy Synthesizer
    There's a new assembler for tier 5+ materials, Advanced Exotic Material Assembler

    Ores & Tiers
    Here's a rough outline of the ores and alloys, their tiers, and their statistical themes.

    Tier 1
    The first tier ores can make all basic systems. Thrusters, gyros, reactors and hull. They can also be gassified for a gas thrust significantly more powerful than hydrogen.

    Kaelnium, an emerald green metal, is the statistical center ground for the first tier. Blocks are roughly the same mass as default blocks for the increased power.

    Azurium is slightly weaker than Kaelnium but still stronger than default. It trades that power for being roughly 80% the mass allowing for faster acceleration or just larger ships with less systems to move it.

    Petracite is the opposite of Azurium. It's slightly more powerful than Kaelnium for an increased mass.

    The average improvement of this tier is 1.35x thruster/gyro force, reactor output, and hull integrity.

    Tier 2
    These alloys are more specific giving only one alloy for each part theme on the tier.

    Calthulusium is an orange metal used for stronger thrusters.

    Luetisium is a yellow metal used for gyros and hull plating.

    Helitropium Is purple metal used for power systems.

    Tier 3
    These ores are specific to a specific ship's system.

    Hyperium is used to make powerful thrusters. It can also be gassified for a powerful gas thrust. That's all it does, but does it need to do more?

    Kaldaryn Crystals are used for powerful reactors. The uranium to MW efficiency is unchanged, only the output of the reactors is changed from the new material. This also includes 2 types of battery blocks. The normal battery which has greater capacity and flow rate the normal and the capacitor, which adds only slightly more capacity than default in exchange for an extremely fast discharge rate. All Kaldaryn batteries charge much faster than they discharge.

    Duranium Hull plating is no joke. You won't be ignoring missiles for too many more hits than normal, but with it's reduced weight, you may be able to evade them better too. The heavy version is still fairly lightweight and is costly matter to break through.

    Faradium is for powerful gyros. They're strength is mighty and their mass is low, but their resilience is significantly reduced. Only a few is enough for a large ship.

    Tier 4
    There's only a single alloy material on this tier in the base mods.

    Tritanium, a white metal alloy, can be used for all major ship systems.

    These 2 tiers are in Alloy mod II
    Tier 5
    Amalphasium - for power systems
    Akaishi - powerful red thrusters
    Duritanium - A strong duranium based alloy

    Tier 6
    Denkikinzoku - for power systems
    Pantonium - powerful brown thrusters
    Substance X - partially baryonic matter for amazing hull integrity

    Exotic Ores
    These are for less vital systems and aren't bound by the normal tier development. They currently have only one tier but a second tier through alloys may be added in another mod in the future.

    Spice, for more powerful jump drives. It's being used as a component and not a fuel source to make the mod simpler. Regardless it jumps much farther and takes more power to charge. The distance is significantly further and the power cost to charge is only slightly higher.

    Stromatolith is a rock that releases oxygen. It can be used to make a more powerful oxygen farm. The ore isn't particular vital nor is the moon it's found on particular dangerous. Regardless, it's still useful.

    Substance R-Delta is one of the hardest to get for doing so little. This can be used to make better gravity generators. Not stronger, but lighter and lower power consumption than default. If you want to cut every unnecessary kg from your luxury yacht or faction's mothership while keeping that comfortable. It's an extremely dense non-baryonic matter and vital for some top tier alloys.

    Alternate versions
    Asteroid only versions will be released in the future. Some people just don't like planets. No need to shun them.

    Economy Mod
    Here's some values for the Frontier Economy mod. Just paste it into the EconomyData.xml file.

    Bug Reports
    I always appreciate bug reports. The more information you can give, the better. I'll try to keep a "known bugs" list if it's ever needed.
    Note the mods are currently in "final version" except for bug fixing. I won't be making any changes to them unless fixing a bug or if some fundamental of the game is changed and they need to be adapted to work right (again). To the best of my knowledge, they are all bug free after going through a significant amount of testing.

    Mod Compatibility
    The goal is to be compatible with as many other mods as possible so everything added is new content instead of overwriting old content. The mod has no script parts, everything is in the xml for maximum compatibility. If anyone finds conflicts, please let me know.

    Coming soon

    Modders add-on guide
    How to make a mod to add to the series that's balanced properly.
    Properly balanced mods may be added to the official series. An add-on can be as big as a new planet/ore mod with all new blocks or as small as an alternate planet or extra block for a base mod.

    How-to everything in the series
    I'm starting a YouTube video series in the near future that will go over all the steps needed to make a part of the series. I'll try to go entry level with it to help someone completely new to modding be able to take part.

    My Extras Planned
    The base series consists of 12 mods consisting of 10 planet/ore mods and 2 alloy mods.
    During the tutorial series, I'll add 2 more planet/ore mods as well as some alloy mod extensions for them. I'll be making the 2 new ones as I record the video guides on modding.
    I'm also planning a weapons mod for the series.
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2017
    • Like Like x 7
  2. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

  3. Buzzed Bear

    Buzzed Bear Apprentice Engineer

    Looks awesome man! Quick question... any chance that your Azurium will be made available WITHOUT having to have the planet (which looks awesome btw)
  4. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    I intend to give each mod 3 different versions of ore distribution;
    Planet version
    Asteroid version (should be a smaller mod without the planet files)
    Impact version (ore only comes from meteor impact collisions)

    Right now I am still bug testing it on my server, but once it's done with the bug fixing stage I'll make the alternate versions.
    • Like Like x 2
  5. Captain Broadstairs

    Captain Broadstairs Apprentice Engineer

    Watching progress with interest
  6. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    All but 2 are done and out today. The last 2 will be in the next few days as I finish up their planets. Then the alloy mod will be another 1-2 weeks. DS testing should start next week, so I expect late January at the longest until I'm sure it's stable and "finished".
    • Like Like x 1
  7. jb_aero

    jb_aero Trainee Engineer

    Comments as I go through the galaxy:

    - Is each arm identical? I guess not, because I visited all 20 planets in arm 1 and found 3 Azurium planets but neither of the other tier 1 planets.
    - Neutron star as center, I like.
    - Neutron stars as planets, evil, but I can see a faction hiding on the moon hoping it deters others from approaching.

    - Planet environment and ore are very pleasing to the eye.
    - The biomes appear in a sensible order.

    - I'm glad you kept the planet design from the Late Game pack, I think it is badass.
    - Sky turns purple once you get to the surface, hard to tell with this game if that is intentional. I think it is fine, but I'm commenting incase that is not by design.
    - The ore looks really cool, I'm curious if the boulders are the only source of this material.
    - The moving clouds are very fitting, given what this material is for. Also wow, I didn't realize clouds could move. I could see this planet having electrical storms if that becomes a game feature.
    - The texture for basic stone on this planet looks neat too.

    - "Oh, this looks like a nice pla... OH **** NEVERMIND"
    - The shimmering of the ore is a nice touch, it looks like it is actively doing something, which is fitting.

    - The ore looks great, and for how much it will be used, the form it comes in is appreciated.
    - From a distance the planet looks cool, but up close it kind of makes me think of yogurt or cotton candy.
    - The shinier blue stone looks like it is supposed to be something special, and it also shows up on ore detectors. My initial landing site was not in sight of any lakes, and the nearby ore spots did not contain buried Duranium, so at first it seemed that refining the stone of this planet would yield special ingots. Arguably confusion is a realistic problem that rewards explorers.
    - The stone showing up on the ore detectors should probably be fixed, otherwise I'm a fan of how each ore I've found so far comes in a different form, it makes the universe more immersive.
    - I'm not sure how I feel about the ambient sound I hear here. I hear "jungle", but others might hear "desolate howling and occaisionally something slithering in the slimy-looking rocks".

    - Wow. There is nothing boring about this planet. It is hard to believe stone that looks like this could have no special properties at all (though some of it does show up on ore detectors).
    - The grass is both exciting and terrifying, rightfully so.
    - The ore itself looks fantastic too.

    Heavy Orange Planet:
    - Is heavy
    - I'm assuming this is the Substance R-Delta planet, because I've been here an hour and haven't found anything unusual besides the gravity.
    - Something here is killing FPS even without spiders

    Desert Planet:
    - I'm assuming this is the Spice planet. Haven't found any naturally yet.
    - The stone lakes are a cruel joke. I approve.

    Overall: (After 1 arm)
    - There is significant reward to exploration.
    - It would be great if the game could support a galaxy this full, but having this many celestial bodies really tanks performance, even before anything is built.
    - The different combinations of planets and moons helped mix things up just a little, but the vanilla planets became a bore in comparison to yours. For personal use I'd probably replace some with planets from other mods, but I would not recommend this for showcasing your series.
    - It appears you greatly prefer spiders to wolves.
    --- Automerge ---
    Amending the above with Arms 2 and 3:

    Heavy orange planet listed above was not the RDelta planet.
    The one I referred to above was only 2x gravity, I have no idea what it was.

    Substance R-Delta:
    - Nice rewarding planet if you can get to it.
    - The ore itself is all over the place, but I see now why it is "the hardest to obtain"
    - Same "grass" as the "Heavy Orange Planet" listed above, but this planet is 3x as heavy.
    - This planet also looks nothing like that one aside from the grass.

    What is planet #206? That is the one in question.

    - Grass/moss is a good texture
    - Not as pretty as Azurium, but still nice
    - Kind of bland, but looks friendly for ground vehicles

    - Not my preferred color, but I guess every ore can't be blue :p
    - Kind of not bland, I guess it matches the benefit they have over the other 2

    Have not gotten to test any blocks yet but those are my thoughts on the planets so far. The dedication you've put into this really shows!
    • Like Like x 1
  8. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    Yes-ish. THere is a degree of summetry with the location of vanilla planets and mod planets on the arm. From the Azurium/Kaelnium/Petracite tier, each arm contains only one type of planet. The Kaldaryn/Hyperium/Duranium tier have one on each arm and in the same locations as the other arms but shuffled around which of 3 on each arm.

    The arrangement was to give a level of predictability and some randomness.

    I tried, clouds aren't quite modable enough for that to work well.

    It was an accidental discover when going for an extreme color effect. I decided to refine the color and keep it.

    That's a bug, thanks.

    I kept the ambient sound settings from the old one and forgot to look them over. Thanks for reminding me.

    Hyperium. Seemed fitting to have a high gravity planet for the high powered thrusters.

    Yes, I cloned the martian material map to be a time saver and replaced subterranean ice with spice. Funny thing is, mars is covered in subterranean ice patches with no dark area above it. This should make Spice harder to find, but since that's the only real challenge on the planet except it's water shortage, I figured it's a fair hurdle.

    The original goal for Kaelnium was giant trees, giant spiders, and an easy time for good place for ground vehicles. I only managed to accomplish 1/3 on that one. Trees and spiders both take software I can't get.

    I've tested a server during the time I was making the late game series with over 200 planets. Fortunately it's only the video card that slows you down because the server doesn't really care how many planets there are. But yeah, I have to turn my graphics down a notch on that map.

    Thanks for the feedback. I hope to have the testing done in another week and then we're going to see how well this galaxy runs on a server. I'm also going to do some modding tutorial videos for youtube to show people how to do everything to make their own planet ore combo and simplify it for people with no modding experience. Hopefully it can catch on enough to give some extreme variety.
  9. jb_aero

    jb_aero Trainee Engineer

    Ohhhh I miscounted the materials. I thought I'd visited all 9, but there are 10 :)

    That's pretty neat, I didn't know mars was like that.

    This game is lacking in creature support as is, but do you have any specific in mind for the trees? Like what is already on the planet but taller/wider or something else?
  10. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    Alright, so progress on finalizing this is stalled. Steam workshop won't let me upload updates to most of the mods. Good news is, few fixes seemed needed. I messed up on some icons on Petracite and Stroma's component is slightly too big for a 1x inventory setting. I'll update them as soon as I can, but as far as I can tell, the mods are all working perfectly.

    I'll start on pictures and descriptions on the mods pages soon. I've also got the alloy mod under works and doing research into how the weapons systems work to make some things that can challenge the new heavy armors.
  11. Foogs

    Foogs Apprentice Engineer

    Nice work!
  12. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    I have to admit, I'm a learn-aholic. I started goofing with the scenarios tools and couldn't be productive with anything else until I figured them out, which I think I finally have. It did stall the mod development, but so did the dozen or so more errors I found and losing my notes for the whole project didn't help. On the upside, I'll have a showcase campaign for the mods when they're finalized that will also be the example in a basic tutorial I am assembling for scenarios.

    Also, steam finally responded to my support ticket. They blamed Keen, but they're responding to me now, so that's progress.
  13. Forcedminer

    Forcedminer Senior Engineer


    hey yeah wonder if blocks can be made slightly transparent?
    wouldn't mind giving a stab at trying to make crystalline blocks. :)
  14. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    I wanted to, but transparency is covered by alphamask and as far as I know, voxels aren't made to handle those. There may be a way, but I don't know it.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2017
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Cetric

    Cetric Junior Engineer

    I made the triaxial galaxy my new home. Also transfered my former playground via SE Toolbox into it, as a planet/asteroids field aside the spiral.
    First encountered not working landing gears, as I had written on steam workshop comments, but after your latest release end of march they work again, or it is Keen's progress by some update removing bugs, can't tell.
    Just one thing: I would like to switch off the constant HUD display of GPS locations of your many planets, and the world won't let me do that. It's a bit annoying when you are busy locally and want to use HUD locations around you for identifying parts during setting up groups etc. I may switch on later when I set out on exploration, but until I do so, I don't need a dozen GPS locations all the time in my view.
  16. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    I finished revising all the mods. I found surprisingly many bugs to fix, finished the alloy mods, and added more diversity to the planets. After play testing, I thought the icons were messy and cleaned up their look.

    They're finished now and shouldn't change any unless someone finds a bug or until a patch day breaks them. I look forward to and dread the possibility of Keen overhauling planets at some point.

    I also made a spawn mod for the Triaxial galaxy map so now it can be started in survival mode without crashing into the neutron star in the center. I hope to host a server with it in the coming months and will start some sort of donation program so the server can handle as many people as possible.

    The links at the top have been updated.
  17. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    Revising all the mods to do the following
    -add custom cloud layers
    -add half blocks
    -rebalance armor (making it much more endurant)
    -fix some of the issues found on planets (e.g AzurePlanet's blocky coast)
    -giving more descriptive info on mod page
    -fix the many errors in the alloy mods

    RL hit the fan hard about the time I was finishing up the alloy mods and I called them complete prematurely. Now that things have settled down again, I'll make certain they're all properly balanced.
    • Like Like x 2
  18. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    It's about time for me to give the series another once over.
    This time the goals are:
    -Improve heightmaps (like a noob, I was using an 8bit image program instead of 16bit)
    -Improve biome diversity on planets
    -Finish adding half blocks
    -Add appropriate particle effects (e.g. colored dust from tires on custom voxels)
    -Replace RDelta's awful voxel texture with something better
    -Give everything PCU values.

    After the next patch comes out, the asteroid version will have to have their scarcity set. This one will likely take some trial and error working out until it feels right.

    Other ambitions:
    (I'm still learning how to do these but I think these will make the series more interesting)
    -Custom trees (or at least modified vanilla trees)
    -Custom creatures (or at least modified vanilla creatures)
    -Energy weapon mod
    -Upgrade modules to work with other modder's shield mods
    • Like Like x 2
  19. doncdxx

    doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

    I finished updating and uploading the series. I started right after beta ended so that should give you an idea how big it is. Everything has been fixed that was bugged. The update broke a few things and those all got fixed.

    What's been changed.
    I added halfblocks to all the hull types and small 1x1 batteries to all the power types.
    Everything now has a custom particle effect for damage and some of the planets have been changed with slightly increased biome diversity.
    Some emissive voxels have been toned down since they were still set to emissive levels that looked good before the big visual update.
    The gas tank's old low poly version has been replaced with a better one, and the high poly model has been improved.
    Everything now has a PCU value.
    I got rid of the custom assemblers and just added a type in the normal assembler. The alloy mods an additional type (the buttons for components, tools, etc.). Because of this alloy mods need to be above the ore mods or the alloys buttons won't show up.
    All objects mass fixed, no more using 10kg of materials to make a 40kg component.

    I also wrote an app to output the xml data for these. The math is all internal so it will output anything you make balanced with these mods' tiers. The advantage behind the app making the mods is that I added a trait system that makes slight modifications to the value of the tier. (for example, choosing a higher mass will raise the other stats, choosing a lower mass will reduce other stats.) I'm going to clean it up (it's really messy right now), add more trait options (most of mine make minimal use of traits), then publish it with tutorials so anyone can make their own mods of this type in relatively little time.

    The repulsor and extra battery mods for all the ores have yet to be updated, but I'll have those out soon. I may tweak biome diversity a little more, but that's not for certain. I think there may be a few icons that need to be fixed, but otherwise it seems to run bug free.

    If anyone finds any problems, please tell me.
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