In recent events, I’ve started to get into game development and I’ve had some interesting ideas. Not the least of which of the ideas is a Massive Multiplayer Online(MMO) game called The Universe. This game takes place in, you guessed it, a universe. I have a complicated hierarchy of different types of players, star ships, and other elements that would set this game apart from every other open world space MMO.
The ships in the game will come in a variety of different shapes and sizes. It goes from the small but agile fighter to the enormous and powerful mothership.
Each non-wanderer player(see later on in post to know what a wanderer is) is issued a basic fighter. A fighter is a small ship that the player takes care of, upgrades, and customizes as they play. These ships are an asset to ships throughout the game as they are the best form of offense there is.
Frigates are the basic large ship that players can save up for. Getting a frigate means you can get a crew which will be explained later on.
Battleships are the next star ship up from frigates. They’re larger, can hold a bigger crew, and can hold 2 frigates inside each.
Flagships are a step up from battleships. They’re even larger, can hold a bigger crew, and yes, they can hold 2 battleships each.
Motherships are the largest standalone ships in the game. They are enormous, can hold a huge crew, and they can hold 5 of each of the lower ships.
Wanderer vessels are fighters that can join together to form a larger vessel and a wanderer crew, which will be explained later.
There will be three types of players that can change their type as long as they have enough in game currency to do so.
All players will start out as citizens. These are people who are members of the default faction which is completely neutral and are not allowed to attack others in their faction or any other as that would be an easy way to take currency from others. Citizens will have to explore planets and trade to gain enough money to gain a new ship. Citizens may also join a crew to gain money.
Captains will be the players who have purchased a ship or ships. These players will be able to have crews and can battle other captains and their crews. They might gain currency depending on whether or not they win the battle. Their ship will be their spawn point.
Crew members are people who have signed up and been accepted as the crew of a ship. These people will be paid per in game day. Crew members will be able to explore the ship and help out with anything they chose. Their spawn points will also be the ship they are assigned to.
Pending crew members are players who have signed up as the crew of a ship but not yet accepted. These players can serve as limited crew members. They will be able to access some functions of the ship, and their spawn point will be the ship’s pending crew bunk, but they will not be considered a full member of the crew. They will be paid per in game day, but only about half of what approved crew members are paid.
Wanderers are players who have saved up for a wandering fighter. Wandering fighters will be fighters with capabilities to connect with other wandering fighters and form a larger ship. These larger ships will be known as wanderer vessels. Wanderer vessels may take jobs from captains and even temporarily serve as crew for ships larger than frigates.
The battle system for the game will be more complex than other combat systems. While ships will be able to upgrade their weapons, they will be equipped with light weapons for clearing out debris in front of them and/or a powerful weapon that takes a while to charge per shot.
Since ships are open to attack, the fighters the crew and captain have do most of the fighting and defending. Battles will mostly take place among the fighters trying to defend their own ships and trying to damage the other ships. When one ship is damage to the point of being neutralized, the battle is over.
At the end of every battle, players will have to repair their ships. If a member is willing, they can go to the nearest neutral zone(see later in post) to get supplies or an auto repair. Crew members will be paid less if their ship is damaged, but they will be paid more if they’re currently repairing their ship. Once the ship is fully repaired, crew members and captains will receive a bonus.
There will be a variety of zones in the game full of different circumstances that can be used for different things.
Neutral zones are areas where players are advised not to attack each other. If a player attacks another player, a bounty will be placed on their head and all players will be able to attack them without consequence and will receive a bonus if they destroy them. Neutral zones will have neutral stations where players can trade for currency, buy supplies and upgrades, or even talk with other players without risking being attacked.
Unclaimed zones are zones that have not yet been claimed by a faction(see later in post to know what a faction is) and will usually have a significant landmark in them. These landmarks can be planets, stars, asteroid fields, nebulae, worm holes, or black holes. These are all landmarks that can be exploited for resources.
Claimed zones are zones that are claimed by factions. These zones can have anything an unclaimed zone can have, but will be marked on the map as claimed when you are in or around it to keep from invading other factions’ property.
When a crew member saves up enough money to buy a ship, they can do so and end up starting the captain’s faction. The original captain will own the faction and be able to name it and change its various settings. In addition to full access to the faction settings, the faction owner will unlock the ability to purchase the biggest, most powerful ship in the game: the mothership.
Depending on the size of the faction, lower captains in the faction will also be able to purchase motherships. Captains of factions may send out lower type ships on missions. say a mothership owner wants to send out all of their frigates, battleships, and flagships to explore a planet. They could do that. And the captains of the flagships could send out their battle ships to explore the planet while all the other ships guard, so on and so forth.
Factions can form alliances if the captains of the factions largely agree to be allied. Or they can declare war on each other through a similar process. Allied factions will have more pay, but if a faction at war on another faction neutralizes all of the ships of the other faction, every member of the faction will get a massive bonus.
As with every MMO, there will likely be trolls in this game. There will be a report system for these trolls that will mark them as space pirates if they get three reports in a 48 hour period from different captains. Each report beyond that will be marked on the map as a sighting.
It is allowed to attack space pirates anywhere and members will receive massive bonuses upon neutralizing space pirate ships.
Space pirates will be attacked on sight by neutral stations if seen near them.
If space pirates are members of a faction, other faction members can go and get supplies to provide for the pirate.
Ships that are considered space pirates will be marked with a skull next to their identity.
If a captain and their crew don’t want to be considered space pirates, they may help a non-pirate ship out of a battle and their names will be erased from the space pirates. The ship can be reported again, though.
For each server, the universe will be different. It will be randomly generated and massive. There will be many galaxies and landmarks to explore and many planets to see. There will be allies and enemies to gain and even interesting NPC’s to find. The game’s story will be what players make of it and the game will constantly be updated with new content to keep it interesting.