StarDrive is a 4X Action-Strategy game where the goal is to build a space empire. Starting with a single planet and a small number of space-worthy vessels, you forge out into the galaxy, exploring new worlds, building new colonies, and discovering the StarDrive universe. The heart of StarDrive is its ship design and combat engine. StarDrive takes a module-based approach to ship design, allowing the player to create custom ship designs where the composition and placement of ship modules really matters to the performance of a ship in combat. In combat, if your portside armor is taking a beating, then rotate around and show them the starboard side! Hide behind a friendly capital ship's shields, warp into and out of the fray, launch fighters, lay mines, and so much more.
This is a brief summary of how to play StarDrive. If you have more specific questions, please post to our stardrivegame.com forums.
Posted by zer0sumgames on Jan 24th, 2012
Controlling Your Flagship
Just for fun, I've started you off with a slightly more powerful flagship than you normally would start with. Move it with WASD. Go into warp by holding the F key. If you hit tab, you can bring up your module overlay and you can take a look at the firing arcs for your weapons. You also start with a scout and a colony ship. If you want to untether the camera from your ship, hit ESC. Backspace brings you back to your ship. If you want tochange your flagship, control click a new ship and click the Eye icon.
Controlling Your Other Ships
Control click your other ships to bring up some basic commands. For instance, you should click your scout and give it the order to go exploring. It will head off to start discovering new planets for you. When in doubt, escape backs out of a window or screen or menu. You can select a group of ships with standard drag selections. Right click where you want them tomove. Hold right mouse down to set a facing and formation. Right now we just have line abreast but there will be more formations later.
Double-click your starting planet to bring up the colony screen. There, you can set your production sliders. You also set whether the planet Imports, Exports, or Stores food and production in the bottom left. These settings affect howyour automated freighters will treat this colony. For instance, if you want to build a specialized industrial colony, jack the production slider all the way up, set food settings to import and industrial settings to export. Put a few Short Range Cargo haulers into your construction queue. When they're done, tell one to transport goods, which it will do. Now freighters will bring you food, and they will pick up your production and move it throughout the empire. Tell the other to transport colonists, and it will begin moving passengers from your populous colonies to your less populous to aid colony growth.
You can add buildings and ships to the construction queue by clicking the +. Inside the queue, you can rush production by clicking the little tools icon. It will apply 10 production from your stored reserves. Research is in the upper left of the screen and is intuitive. You will be able to research most techs fairly quickly; we'll be working on balancing and tweaking the costs of those techs as we continue to flesh out our tech tree. The techs that are in the game now are all relatively low level and our final tech tree is going to be substantially larger.
Ship building is largely complete and should be pretty straightforward. Please bear in mind that I don't have any restrictions in place in this build about where you can place modules, but in non-dev builds there will be limits on where you can place items. Also you'll need to use power conduit modules to build a power grid for your ship. You want tomake sure all your modules are powered. In this build your designs will still work even if the modules are unpowered, but in later builds you will need modules to have power to function. So when you lay power, put in a power plant and drag the power conduit tool around. You'll see how it works pretty quickly.
Right now the AI will declare war on you and get upset if you colonize its systems or attack its ships, but there are no more diplomacy options. This is under development presently and is the next big update. The empire/diplomacy/ help buttons in the UI are disabled until then.If you come across bugs or crashes, email me directly or post them to the forums. The forum is pretty poor right now -- I don't like the code at all. I have a new website being made right now though, and that should be a lot more functional.