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Planetary Orbits & Stations

Welcome to some more Star Citizen taking a looking at persistence, Controller Support, Defending your ship & a lot of information on Planets & RestStops Orbiting and how that will affect Quantum Travel and route planning. It’s a Summary of Calling All Devs – Of Space Stations and Orbits

Orbits
At the moment in the PU Planets rotate BUT do not orbit, all objects in the star map are in fixed positions on the map.
It’s still the plan to have planets orbiting stars, and moons orbiting planets, functional orbits in each of the star systems.
This had quite a complex Q&A to it, so I’ll read some of it word for word:
“Once Planets Start Orbiting their stars, how will the rest stop stations maintain a meaningful position between 2 planets?”
They won’t as planets orbit and rotate.
They are using Lagrange Points where stations are likely to be placed.

A Lagrange point is a location in space where the combined gravitational forces of two large bodies, such as Earth and the sun or Earth and the moon, equal the centrifugal force felt by a much smaller third body.
The Yellow orb represents a Star here, the blue point a planet, the green points stations.
You can see how they orbit & remain relative to the planet.
There are 5 Lagrange points around major bodies such as a planet or a star so each planet potentially could have 5 stations, that will remain parked in orbit in a system relative to a planet/or the star.
You won’t get objects staying in the same place between 2 planets BUT you will get stations that move relative to a planets orbit & then orbit the sun with them.

So lots of objects moving relative to planets.
They seem to be getting around any issues here by having lots of truckstops and allowing you to plot routes.
This does also mean that routes and plotting will change, there are not static routes.
Planets and objects will move but there will be truck stops placed that mean you won’t get stuck & you have options.
This actually plays a lot into exploration gameplay for me, discovering somethings location and saving the data makes more sense if you are also saving information of where this object is moving to. Once you have a location of a derelict, asteroid field, station, POI or asterial body you are able to travel back because your starmap can number crunch and work out where it is.
They already use splines to draw curved QT points & routes so some of the work for actually travelling is already solved. But it will also mean that objects are moving while you are travelling to them, so the system will need to account for this.

Spawning
Players will be able to spawn at their habs, in the future you’ll be able to rent different types of room.
At the moment they are working on some spawning logic to allow players to sensibly spawn at locations.
In the short term they may look at having more smaller/remote locations where players can spawn in small numbers.
We are able to spawn back in our ship if we logged out in a bed OR the last major location that was visited.
We will see more of player habs in 3.3 and the coming weeks and the mechanics will evolve based on player feedback.

Joystick & Gamepad Support
They will be supporting & improving Joystick & Gamepads for the major systems in game like mobiGlas and Starmap Support. The plan is to be able to use a single control device for as many situations as possible.
We will see more turret & control improvements, work on that is continuing.
They acknowledge that players don’t like button changes BUT they are still optimizing control setups and adding features.
Other (Non-Keyboard) Controller types won’t be under supported.

Ship Locking / Defending
The first iteration of ship locking that we have in game was to stop people stealing your ship so easily. Now you can have anyone in your group opening doors.
They have been working on the groups and reputation system. This will enable players to potentially defend their ship from intruders without themselves getting a crimestat.
The Criminality and Reputation systems will be getting more complex to account for various gameplay and mechanics.