What is the basic gameplay like?

That depends on the roles you play, either in space or on the ground.

You will begin the game as a newly trained astronaut with basic skills. You will spend your early moments getting your feet wet, signing up for various missions from NASA, with the Russian Space Agency, various governments, and corporations. Such missions could be for pure science like sending exploration rovers or managing equipment doing research experiments. Or they could be commercial missions, deploying GPS and communications satellites.

Those who do not wish to go to missions in just space will find there are ground-based methods to advance their character, as mentioned in the Characters FAQ. There are even tools and activities to make downtime or unwinding from a mission more fun.

Rewards from successful missions and tasks can be used to further your career as an astronaut. Once you make some friends and form or join a guild, called a Space Agency, then your options become almost limitless. Such an organization allows you to pool your resources with other players, design your own spacecraft and rockets, and take you further than a lone astronaut can go. With time and effort, your Space Agency could be the one to reach the Moon and Mars, and more importantly, maintain a presence there.


Is the game easy to learn?

Spaceflight Online is being designed with multiple levels of play. The game will be easy to play but difficult to master. Beginners will be introduced easily into the game through the starting tutorial, and from there they can return to the Training Center at anytime to brush up on any mission skills they need, even practicing in a water tank on mission equipment.

Advanced users, players who wish to apply real-world knowledge such as designing better spacecraft or plotting more efficient orbital transfers, will have powerful tools to do so. These same tools will have useful tutorials to allow novice players to learn them at their own pace, the idea being that proper manual application of real principles will yield more efficencies than just using the automated systems.


What is the interface like?

There will be easy point-and-click interfaces to manage tasks. Flight vehicles will have HUD systems and displays for flight control. Players will have access to character sheets, in-game email, maps, orbital data, radio channels, financial accounts, and training manuals.


Will there be combat?
No, there is no combat in Spaceflight Online. There is no killing of other players or creatures or robots. Instead you are competing with other players to simply succeed in a venture that is historically dangerous yet compelling.


How will you prevent overcrowding?

On the ground, the most potential areas for overcrowding are at the starting Space Centers of NASA, RSA, and ESA. To alleviate this problem we’ve given each Center additional launch pads, training rooms, spacecraft processing facilities, and assembly buildings. The Mission Control centers will have instanced control rooms to handle all the missions being run by players.

In space, the most potential areas for overcrowding are in low earth orbit in and near the International Space Station (ISS), as everyone will want to at least see it once they get to space. To counter this, spacecraft will not be allowed to match orbits with the station unless the crew has a mission to go there. Two ISS may be employed to spread people out.

A backup plan would be to make the ISS orbit instanced so anyone can go there almost anytime they have a reason to.


Are there ways to advance, other things to do, besides go into space?
Yes. You can be part of a Ground Crew, which can manage rover or probe missions, or support a Flight Crew with their mission in space. You can also choose to spend your time developing your Space Agency’s launch center or have some fun joyriding between centers in a car, training jet, or helicopter. Players with a mind for roleplaying the off-duty life of an astronaut will have various tools and opportunities to do that as well.


Is there a way to finish Spaceflight Online? How long can I play?

Spaceflight Online is a persistent world, which continues for other players long after you log off or move on to other games. You can play for as long as you like, as frequently or casually as you like, helping build a possible future in human spaceflight.


Is there a grouping system? How large can a group be?

Yes, you will be able to group with other players as part of a Flight Crew, Ground Crew, a combination of the two called a Mission Team.

A Flight Crew can have a maximum of 7 players, depending on available seats. A Ground Crew can have as many as 40 players. But multiple Flight Crews and Ground Crews can be joined together to create larger Mission Teams.


How does experience and rewards work?

Players will gain experience by successfully completing missions and tasks set for them on the surface and in space. Experience gained goes to the skill or skills that were used to attain it until your character is thoroughly an expert in it, allowing you to progress to the next skill in the chain.

Attaining certain levels in training places the character at successive stages in their “career” which govern their personal salary, as well as certain abilities and privileges. An astronaut’s salary can be used on themselves to purchase items to roleplay off-duty activities with, such as housing, cars, furniture, clothing, and such.

Once a player joins their own Space Agency their salary is dependent on guild success. Funds are awarded on completion of missions, which tend to pay higher than missions taken through NASA, RSA, or ESA space centers. These funds can then be used by a Space Agency to develop their own Space Center, build launch facilities, design spacecraft, and support a roster of astronaut members.



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