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  Mechanic #194 - Astronaut Tacitcs
Posted: Feb 6, 2014

Move in 3-dimensional space only in relation to other objects within it.

  Astronaut Tactics

This is a really simple idea - more of a mechanic than a full game premise. I was thinking about moving in three dimensional space, and the complexities of translating that into a point and click movement system for a tactical game. It's easy to move all you want if you are in direct control of something, but it becomes an interface nightmare to reference random positions in 3D space. I realized that this was because you are referencing it based on a fixed point in 3D space.

My initial thought was that motion could be referenced based on the objects within the 3D space, and it becomes much easier. If you want to move towards something, you already have a direction, you just need to input the magnitude.



Fig 194.1 - Astronauts, as usual, fighting to the death.

This is an idea where astronauts battle it out, tactics style, in 3D space (though my example is 2D). Their movement is relative to each other. You click on another astronaut and that other object becomes your anchor. You can then either move a certain distance towards, or away from that anchor. You can, for example, move 2 spots towards the blue astronaut, then change anchor to the red one, and move 2 more spots towards him.



Fig 194.2 - Multiple anchors.

It is possible to select multiple anchors, with the resulting path being averaged between them. This allows you to move between two objects. This gives a unit a little more maneuverability without complicating the process too much.



Fig 194.3 - Space Debris.

This creates a novel movement system that is relatively easy to digest in 3D, but eventually, you'll end up with two astronauts left, and they can only move linearly towards or away from each other. To combat this, the astronauts have a limited ability to fire out debris, which they can then use as movement anchors. This is fired out away from the unit, perpendicular to the anchor. The debris will fire in all directions, creating a circle of debris around the astronaut.



Copyright 2007-2014 Sean Howard. All rights reserved.