What is Expedition Mode?
Expedition mode is an all new open-ended way to play Airmen. Players will join a lobby, form a crew, select their airship and launch their expedition. On your expedition you'll look to fill your cargo hold with a variety of resources from wood to coal to aetherium to helicore. AI structures and airships may protect resource deposits or other human crews may look to pirate your cargo hold. The map will remain persistent as new crews join and leave and new resources and resistances will be generated as islands are encountered.
Any cargo you successfully extract with be added to your depot. Resources are spent when choosing your airship and costs are based on what parts are used to build the ship. Bringing very light basic airships will cost no resources but the heaviest airships will require multiple successful hauls to amass their components. Successful extraction will refund a ship's resource cost based on the damage it has sustained.
Resources will come in many varieties with multiple ways to harvest each one. Components like pigeon missiles will require unique resource like pigeon eggs but simple armor, beams, and cannons will only require wood and aetherium steel. Aside from vanilla harvesting, resources can be plundered from AI cargo vessels or found in protected caches. Additionally, any captured airship can be extracted and disassembled into a fraction of its build cost.
Expedition mode is a massive project and its functional components will slowly roll out individually. It began with the endless sandbox to test a larger map, then Last Crew Standing to bring that map to multiplayer and create a multi-team framework, and now the ability to chop down trees and load a cargo hold with the dropped resources. Future frameworks include mid-match connection, persistent resource tracking, run-time resource and resistance spawning, and more.
The new mode also requires much more new content on top of technical frameworks including each harvestable resource, new AI structures and airships, and new islands.
The existing game modes of Airmen will remain unaffected in the mean time unless implementing a feature into it would serve as a useful test. You will NOT be required to pay resource costs to bring ships to existing game modes.
This new mode is still a ways out and it will not be officially released until all core framework is implemented and a healthy amount of content can be enjoyed. There will likely be scheduled tests of the new mode coordinated through the Discord as it gets closer to release.
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