Damage to asteroids

If I hit a shot at an asteroid, it will explode? I would like to be able to achieve this with a shot of my ship. It would be interesting.

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Let me ask you this:

If you shoot an asteroid, why should it explode? Are you shooting a laser? Missile? Some sort of kinetic projectile?

I’d also be curious why you think something is interesting only because it explodes ;). I think asteroids can be interesting for all their other gameplay purposes such as cover/hiding spots.

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Why do you want to add asteroid destruction? Does the additional gameplay compensate for the additional development time required to design it? Other, unnamed, space games have spent many millions on unnecessary side projects because somebody thought it was cool. Battlescape doesn’t have the budget and uncritical fanbase to spend time and money on secondary gameplay elements. Everything new should be rigorously justified.

Instead of asteroid destruction, how about making a signature system which includes stealth benefits for flying very close to an asteroid? Or deployable sensors that can sit on planets or on asteroids? There are many possibilities for asteroid interactions and the final options chosen should be those which create the best gameplay impact, commensurate with the development effort.

After blowing up asteroids (smaller ones) in Star Citizen, I have to say it is pretty cool and really adds to immersion, so I also hope they include this mechanic. But of course time and money is an issue so it is pretty hard to implement. But who knows, maybe the DEVs will add something like that down the line. :wink:

To reiterate, what does blowing up asteroids in a game the scale of Infinity Battlescape add to the game? There will be thousands of asteroids in the game, possibly even thousands of asteroids around a single planet. The scale of Infinity is beyond that of any space combat game built, we have to reorder our thinking from the small-scale cool VFX to what will have an impact on gameplay.

If a single asteroid is destroyed, then the person hiding behind it will go to the next asteroid, and then the next asteroid, and then the next asteroid … and then the next asteroid. There are far too many asteroids in this game for asteroid destruction to be decisive.

Then comes the budget issue. Star Citizen has a huge number of possible game concepts. A bare handful are actually in a tech-demo, while the rest haven’t even reached mock-up stage. Infinity cannot afford the massive delays that is Star Citizen development, it doesn’t have the money or the fanbase. Again, cool isn’t a reason enough to put something in a game.

I’m sorry for pounding this point again, but the issue of technological overreach is a big one. Fans, myself most prominent here, can always think of another cool mechanic. But implementation is expensive and long. Infinity has a limited budget and a limited timeframe, and the audience doesn’t have the patience shown to early kickstarters. Strong discipline is in order from the developer and from the fans.

It’s not all about game play; neither is it all about pretty graphics. You have to find the balance between both. What’s more I-Novae isn’t Star Citizen and I doubt very much whether the DEVs here will fall into the trap of feature creep or over extending themselves, so if they thought it was feasible then I have no problem with it, especially if it adds immersion. After all, immersion/realism is a big part of the game - otherwise I-Novae wouldn’t have struggled to make the game look as amazing as it does.

As for your contention that asteroids don’t add to the game? Well, please allow me to retort:

Now that would be FREAKING AWESOME gameplay! And the first game that is able to accomplish this will have something truly unique and not just another…:disappointed:… boring space sim. Fortunately I-Novae stands apart with its high fidelity, planet landings and high player count (knock wood) but don’t underestimate unique interesting game play - and never sir, underestimate the mighty asteroid!

That said, I have no problem with the DEVs not implementing asteroid disintegration, as I have already stated, due to money and time constraints. Besides, we don’t even have the engine in our hands yet so to go from here to there is kind of moot at the moment. But chasing an enemy through an asteroid field and blowing up a few asteroids on the way? It doesn’t get any cooler than that.

Destructable asteroids would be pretty nice IMO. Maybe sometime in the future when they reap the monies they can do that. It certainly would add to the gameplay, since hiding behind them during combat was a viable tactic when playing the prototype.


Only a matter of opinion. You have yours and I have mine. Thank you.

You are mistaken. Ever Space managed little more than Infinity: Battlescape and put that purpose.

Awesome, right? :slight_smile:


I think it’s mostly a problem of how to store and transmit the data. From what I understand, if asteroid destruction or terrain deformation was implemented, then you’d need to store that information to the server and then send it to the client. And then you’d need to have the client search that database to see what changes have been made compared to the procedurally generated version. Which would be fine for small changes or slow speeds, but if you destroy a large number of asteroids or are moving at high speeds it might cause some performance issues, either slowing down the game (since you’d have to check the database for every asteroid you generate. You could partially solve that problem by dividing the map into a grid or a tree and divide the destruction info into that structure for easy searching, but it could still cause problems for large numbers of destroyed or worse created objects) or making asteroids pop and then disappear as the game realises they have been destroyed (assuming the game generates everything normally and then erases things that have been destroyed after the normal procedural generation finishes).

At least that’s my impression. I don’t know exactly how the I-Novae engine works so it might actually be easy to implement that with little lag.

Yes. I talked about it.

Chris Roberts praised this effect in his letter.

Only because you don’t know anything about asteroids. Even “small” asteroids are incredibly massive (the ones in the prototype are hundreds of metres across, and so weigh on the order of a trillion kilograms. It would take an exceptionally long time to break one apart with the kind of weapons designed to damage or destroy (mostly hollow) space ships.

Destroying asteroids is one of those immersion breaking things that make things feel like an arcade game.


How about things like surface scarring from texture decals?

That’d be totally awesome.


Like this immersion and wanted to see this game.

I think you missunderstood. We are primarily talking about the particles of the planetary belts. The particles of saturns belt are mostly 1 cm to 10 meters big, not that far of from the depiction of belt particles in the prototype. To my knowledge we only saw one video where the devs showcased an early implementation of an asteroid.
I don’t think anybody was talking about that one.

Then you’re not talking about asteroids.

The particles in the prototype’s rings up to 100 metres across (not counting the base) based on their relative size to the Hellion. They’re also made of stone and/or metal, unless Saturn’s rings, meaning they would have a mass on the order of 5-500 billion kilograms. The only ones you’d have a reasonable chance of destroying are the really small “wooshing” chunks that fly past you, like in, say, Freelancer. Once you have solid chunks of rock and metal on the order of the size of your own ship, they’re not going to budge.

Solid chunks of rock and metal are as massive as ships 10s of times larger than the solid body, and as durable as ships with bulkheads as nearly thick as the chunk of rock itself.

Yup. INS is already planning on having a lot of rounds out at one time. Think of the processing that goes into supporting one weapon round. Now think of that with the added overhead of scorch marks; it’s going to be that much more of a load on the infrastructure. Trying to crack or break rocks would be even more.

Contrast that with the value to gameplay. I think the one thing that gameplay wants is some acknowledgement that a rock or building was hit. It will certainly help with depth perception - assuming all strike marks are about the same size. So a scorch mark would be appropriate. To keep the data management problem down, have the scorch marks fade out over time, giving them a limited lifetime. Energy rounds could leave heat scars that fade out over time, which would be even more palatable than fading scorch marks.

One twist is that if rocks are procedural, then their makeup can be procedural as well. The amount of ices in a rock could be used to produce various visuals as a result of strikes by different weapon types. Maybe a little explosion would be appropriate in some cases.