Concept - Blockades! (this is a long one, tl;dr included)

HERE I AM AGAIN WITH ANOTHER (probably already conceived) IDEA LEGGO

So picture this. You’ve just set course for a faraway system and you stand up to place your snack into the oven. But as your warp drives arrive to their loudest, you faintly hear beeping from the cockpit. Curiously, you turn your head to see what’s the matter when you realize that all displays are flashing red like a Edgar Allan Poe-inspired rave. You immediately rush over to take a look. “Is it the coolant leaking again? Please don’t be the coolant again…” But as you read your thoughts are interrupted. The screen is flashing with CHICKEN BLOCKADE SPEED TRAP AHEAD in big all caps bold letters. “OH NO!” You think to yourself. “I can’t stop to battle these chickens! My oven uses the overheating of the warp reactor to bake and my chicken nuggets aren’t done!” You look up at the oncoming swarm of chickens getting closer at speeds well beyond what would be considered terminal velocity, then back at your delicious snacks, innocently baking in your oven. You breathe in, then out - strapping yourself in to your surprisingly comfortable seat. “If I’m not stopping, then that means I’m going to have to face these guys on the run. FOR MY NUGGETS!

So that little story is all well and good, but I hear you asking, “How would this genuinely insane concept work?” Well, here’s coolant sis:
Some (usually small) sectors of space will occasionally be overrun by chickens and be declared as Danger Zones. You can either choose to go off-road through the area, take a roundabout route, or say “cluck it” and take the risk by taking the direct highway route through. This would usually conserve less fuel since you’re probably one of very few crazy enough to blast through chicken-infested fields at warp speed.

“Okay, that explains WHY they happen, not the HOW. HOW do they work?”
Let’s go through it bit by bit and disassemble how it would go in terms of gameplay basics.

  1. You’ll be given an opportunity to swap your loadout before entering the danger zone via warning before taking off.
  2. Depending on the size of the danger zone, each passed star system has a chance to begin a blockade, and if one is triggered, a reduced chance is run for all subsequent systems in your path and inside the danger zone to add to the blockade wave count. This means that there is essentially a chance for you to run into a single wave of blockade and then escape scott-free because the rest of the wave chances rolled in your favor. Chance of blockades scales inversely to zone size; the bigger the zone, the smaller chance for each system to trigger (and extend) a blockade.
  3. Losing a blockade could do one of three things: Take away some food, take away some keys or use up the fuel you would have used to get to your destination and halt your progress. Your lives aren’t expended even if you lose a few and still make it through. “Why?” Good question, let’s move on.
  4. Waves are time-limited to match how long it would take you to arrive to your destination. If a wave takes too long, you’ll just shake off the chasers and move on.

“Okay, so it’s basically a surprise mission with different consequences. What could you do to make it… Like… Fun? Like a video game? Because as-is, you’re springing an unnecessary battle on a hero that’s probably already battle-weary.”
Here come the finer points of gameplay, so buckle up.
Once you transition from the map onto the field, the beginning plays out like usual with a crucial difference - you’re not slowing down since you’re still in warp. The screen will zoom out as far as possible right off the bat, and the waves begin as space whizzes by you.
Most projectiles will move much slower because physics, so beam weapons would be recommended, though that’s not to say projectiles are useless. Additionally, though probably ACTUALLY useless, your exhaust is still in warp mode, hence it is expelling massive amounts of energy. It’s essentially become a weapon of it’s own, and deals huge damage to anything that comes into direct contact with it, though most things will be coming from the front, not behind.
“So that’s it? Now waves approach like usual?”
Nah m8, the waves are different now. Instead of facing regular waves, you are now rushing through fields of chickens and barriers. All of these waves would have a route to take that would let you entirely dodge them without needing to take a shot, though shooting is also a good idea. Think of those top-down racing games where you steer a vehicle through a track, then give it a CI twist. Of course, some chickens will try to catch up and attack from the sides, but those can easily be shaken off by just dodging their attacks until time runs out (or killing them if that’s your cup of tea).
Another form of obstacle are asteroid belts. A collision at this speed would be lethal, so as you move through a field, line indicators (like with alien beams) will appear to forewarn incoming asteroids which will whizz by like bullets rather than floating rocks.
The bigger your difficulty is, the smaller gaps and spaces for dodging and more dense the asteroid belts are, tossing more at you at a time.
Once you make it out of the danger zone or arrive at your destination, the blockade ends and you emerge unscathed on the other side.

tl;dr Chickens block your path, you blast through them in warp drive by dodging them at warp speeds, losing yoinks some resources and winning is uhhh pretty nice.

“This concept is insane!” So it is. “It’ll never be made!” Well I mean, yeah. “Then why did you post it?” Mostly to vent my creativity somewhere, partly to throw some ideas at the wall. Who knows? Maybe some of it sticks and could then be taken by someone else and refined into something more feasible, fun and interesting to play through? I trust this community to be capable of that.
Anyways, opinions, arguments and "shut up"s are all appreciated, hope you enjoyed reading my warp-drive stream of consciousness idea!

“Are you insane?”
Yeah, probably.


Good heavens, can you be a bit more concise? This is almost a shitpost. Please just describe it more thoroughly in a dedicated paragraph. On the other hand, attacks during travel were scrapped a while ago, since they decided that it would be simply too annoying. However, the concept of a “danger zone” has its merits.

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Love the presentation of your idea. But I had nightmares last night thinking what it would take to implement it :wink:


Is the baſic concept of interrupting travel for a miſſion a problem, or is the iſſue in the never-ending phyſics and gameplay-related ſtuff?

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It just requires re-design or at least restructuring of several fundamental mechanics of the game. It would be much simpler, for example, for those blockades to appear as areas of the galaxy in which NPCs (similar to Droids, but these would be Chicken battalions or somesuch) move around. The player still has a choice of whether to take on a blockade. This re-uses the concept of “missions available at an NPC” and avoids making fundamental changes to the travelling/trip mechanic (which is complex enough as it is).


I like to be wordy about my ideas because I feel that way I’m putting them across more clearly. That and, at risk of committing a faux pas to the forum, I personally believe that sparing detail in a concept pitch meant to inspire further ideas rather than be used as-is is kind of counter productive.

It practically is.

I’m glad you at least enjoyed reading through it! And yes, my ideas do have a tendency of giving people various flavors of nightmare. I wonder why?

That does strike the core of my idea pretty much perfectly, and it sounds developmentally feasible to boot. Thank you for reading!

Huh, I never really considered the complexity of the overworld map. The presentation makes it seem fairly simple, but now the more I look at it the more I notice how much of it is probably code spaghetti of some flavor.

Great, now I’m hungry.


Now that I’ve went back and looked over my topics, I’ve posted a similar idea about a star system that gets “invaded”, which is dangerous to enter, and has very good key drops inside. That may be easier to implement as it’s a static object on the map, and here it is in case you were interested.

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