Mod News

Feature Highlight: Carrier Relative Docking | WDB #87

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In last week’s post, we went through all of the recent patch notes but didn’t have much chance to go in depth on any one change or feature addition. This week, we’re taking a closer look at how carrier operations have changed.

Development Updates

While the focus of last week’s blog was showing off our incredible new graphics and how we’ve been pulling the Freelancer engine up to more modern graphical standards, the visuals were by no means the only exciting thing about the most recent patch. For anyone that missed it, an important new feature was near the bottom of that list.

  • Added Carrier Relative Positioning: While docking with a carrier, ships will start moving relative to the carrier’s location instead of the world when close enough to it, provided the carrier is moving faster than the ship’s top speed at 100% throttle.

Anyone familiar with how carriers have worked in Freeworlds: Tides of War in the past may understand how frustrating it could be launch and recover fighters from one. In order to launch and receive ships unperturbed, a carrier would need to remain stationary to prevent its fighters from hitting its hull or making other fatal errors.

This meant carriers would have to deploy fighters far outside a combat zone to prevent an ambush and ensure its fighter complement was safely delivered to a fight. This left carriers somewhat vulnerable and as a result, they were underutilized in combat. Carrier Relative Positioning helps to alleviate those problems.

To reiterate the note in the patch: When you get within close range of a carrier, your ship begins moving relative to the carrier instead of relative to the world. This means that if the carrier is moving, your ship moves along with it until you dock, almost as if you’ve been locked into orbit with it. This makes docking and launching in a combat zone a much more practical action than it was before.

However, there are a few caveats to how positioning works:

  • Relative positioning is only in effect when a player has requested docking with the ship and is near a docking point.
  • Relative positioning is not in effect when launching ships, but fighters exit the ship at 100% throttle so they should be able to clear the deck without issue.
    • Carrier captains may wish to slow down a bit to be on the safe side, however.
  • Cruise flight is not supported while engaged in relative positioning with a carrier. Fighters are limited to standard throttle only.

So, for all you would-be capital ship commanders, you can now drop off your fighter-jock comrades into a hot zone, go off on your own combat mission in the area and receive your fighters back for rearming and reinsertion all without having to be stationary whatsoever.

We’ll be putting together some video showing off this feature as soon as we can!


Community Links

Recruitment for the New Republic and Empire are open! Send your applications to Kalis and/or Volume_9 and they will get you sorted right away. 

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