Discussion Storyline, Background, Narrative
Pioneer is in dire need of some visimilitude. Before a framework can be made, there are some questions that need to be answered. My initial questions are:
- Is the galaxy/universe static or dynamic? Ie will events that happen in the game change the game world? (think FFE) or will nothing of import actually happen (FE2). I assume the answer is static as Pioneer is based on FE2, but was is the consensus out there?
1a) An example of a dynamic galaxy would be new settlements. This could be either hand coded (at certain date new minerals are found on planet XXX and so a small colony is established. Hand coded bbs missions could include good money for ferrying critical goods and/or people to the new colony. Or if your ship is big enough you could actually ferry the colony proper to the planet
1b) Another idea that comes to mind is changing political ideals. It could be interesting to start the game with the 'Earth Federation' and 'Confederation' with an uneasy or even easy peace, but with an election starting. the election ultimately leads to a new president of the earth federation, one who is harder on the confederation and ultimately leads to war. I guess it would be too hard to directly take part in war but you could have periphiral involvement 1b,a) Hard coded systems could then became disputed or even change allegiance.
1b,b) Commodity prices will change. Minerals and machinery will be come more expensive. If agricultural planets are targetted in the war, surrounding industrial planets will suffer and have higher prices accordingly. Enter the entrepeneur!
The world doesn't revolve around the player, (though in FE2 you might disagree). To really create visimilitude there needs to be things happening in the background, life going on, troughs, peaks, disagreements, minor wars. The question in my mind is how do we get this information to the player?
2a) I don't think FFE had it right with five major journals. They either repeated each other (with a different slant to it) or were completely random. 2b) Has anyone played Sid Miers 'Pirates' game? I'm talking about the old one, not the new one. In the age of sail (which is a good parallel for the age of space travel, I believe) There weren't widespread papers available at every port. What was available was gossip from the tavern, more official information from the mayor and if you stumbled across a friendly ship in your travels you could swap info on what had been seen, shares pilots journals effectively. 2c) I think a combination of a and b above would be the best way forward, if manageable. You would think that the Fed and Confed would have an official mouthpiece, but it either wouldn't reach the outer systems or would be old news by the time it got there. These outer worlds, the indepedents would have gossip. You could learn about changes in commodity prices or info on how the wars are going by some mechanism when landed (maybe another button under bbs: "Check the tavern" which would just have text on the gossip.
There needs to be people populating this world, celerbrities lets call them, which are followed by news and gossip, that are of some import to the universe. FFE had Meredith Argent and Mic Turner, the jjagged bbanner band, etc. They don't necessarily need to play a part in anything that actually happens, but they should be out and about, being mentioned every now and again.
Backstory to Pioneer: So far all that I can find out is that people left the solar system in the 24th Century at slower than lightspeed and set up Epsilon Eridani colony. Hyperspace came along in the 28th Century. Someone has thought about this and I suggest we stick to this timeframe. It does limit how big the 'known galaxy' can be and how many colonised systems there can be, but it does open a few cool possiblities. There will be two tiers> step one will be 'old' systems colonised the 'old navy way' by slower than FTL. They will be the biggest, strongest, richest systems. Then there will be the FTL systems which are newer, struggling, a bit poorer and easily picked on by the old systems. There will be a hierachy and friction and discontent. Then there will be those odd groups that leave Earth to do their own thing and set up systems far far away. think Van Manneens star system in FE2, but other ideas include independent kingdoms, communist enclaves etc, odd balls which spice things up.
These are some initial thoughts, written down in a brain dump, but I'd like to get a discussion going around them and get some feedback on what everything thinks. From that we can work toward something that everyone is happy with.