Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Anatomy of a Trade

While most of my time has been spent playing games lately, work has been continuing on Stellar Fortune.  When we last left it, I was revamping it to run using a command line interface for development efficiency.  So far, it has worked out well.  Let's take a look!

The economy, and trading, are the foundation of the game.  So my first task was to get that setup.

I'm using a basic buy and sell order system which you've seen in games like Eve Online.  As we can see, There is money to be made by taking Food from Prime to Alto.

Lets buy some of the Food.  It acquired some inventory space for us on Prime to hold our newly purchased Food.

Now that we have some stuff to sell, how do we get it to Alto?  Originally,  I had the player transporting it via ship.  That didn't mesh well with the executive role I wanted the player to take.  I don't want to heap mundane tasks on the player in this day and age.  That is where Agents come in.

I'll go more into Agents in another post, but here are two for hire.  They both are able to transport cargo, but lets take a closer look at them.

Agents can be thought of as party members, and what they can do for you depends on what they know and what they have.  This guy can fly a ship and has cargo space.  He should do just fine.

Ok, we hired him for a day.  This is just a contractor, players can actually put Agents on their payroll too (and contract them out to other players).  We also gave the agent a Transport order, which will take a few minutes.  He is actually travelling through the game world, so 'events' can happen.  Hopefully your agent is prepared.

And finally, now that the cargo is at its destination, we sell it.

The interface is pretty rough, but it is actually all JSON based so replacing it with something modern will not be too difficult.  The terminal look brings back a lot of good memories for me though :)