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Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 2:35 pm
by The Jo
If you dock to another spaceship and destroy your previous ship, your own ship gets killed.
Bug or feature?

Re: Docking

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 7:57 pm
by Mozork
Still deciding... ;) It depends on the specification. In my opinion the docking is a temporary shift of control, not a permanent one so it makes sense that the fate of the player is still tied to its main pawn (even though at the time it may not be operating it). Using the docking system to permanently switch ships, in my opinion, is a hack, which is fine but should not be used do drive specification.

But I'll be looking into the Dockingsystem tomorrow, since there are a lot of things that are not too clearly and concisely implemented, yet.

Re: Docking

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 9:56 pm
by x3n
I think that we somehow mixed two diferent things. At one side we have "docking". Docking in my opinion is the action of attaching a small ship to a big ship or station or landing platform. If the small ship is docked, it moves with the big ship and maybe it's possible to refill fuel or something like that. In any way, the pilot is still in his (small) ship, but he can't control it anymore. If the small ship explodes, the pilot dies. If the big ship explodes, I don't know... maybe the small ship gets detached or explodes, this could be a variable parameter.

On the other hand we have the ability to change ships. You could think of it as a pilot who leaves his ship and enters a new one. Or maybe he enters a space-station or boards a stationary turret or something. In every case he's not connected to the old ship anymore. If the old ship explodes, he doesn't care. He's now completely in control of the new ship as if he would have spawned in it.

Of course those two abilities could be connected, so in future we might open a menu after docking where the player can choose:
- stay in his old (small) ship until he undocks
- take control of the big ship
- take control of another small ship in the hangar
- take control of a turret of the big ship / station
- enter the big ship / station (maybe go to bed, go to a shop, mission briefing, etc)

The current implementation of docking implements the landing maneuver and the loss of control, but then it suddenly decides to teleport the player to the cockpit of the big ship. And this leads to the confusing situation that you can now fly away with it and shoot at your old ship (which doesn't seem to be attached).

So there are two possible ways to make this less confusing:
- If you allow the player to take control of the big ship after docking, the small ship should be attached and it shouldn't be possible to shoot at it. Or, if you allow shooting at it, the player shouldn't die because he's sitting in the big ship. As long as the small ship exists, undocking should be possible at any time.
- Alternatively you could let the player board another small ship which was docked at the big ship. In this case we have 3 ships, but the big ship is not steerable. Now the player can fly away and he can shoot at his old ship (and also at the big ship) without dying. Undocking, however, is not possible anymore, except if he flies back to the big ship, docks again, and enters his old ship again.

Note that these are two fundamentally different approaches and it makes sense to implement only one at the moment.