Centrifugal Game

A Slide Rule, a Sundial, and a Physicist walk into a bar
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testtubegames
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Centrifugal Game

Post by testtubegames » Fri Jul 05, 2013 12:34 am

Here's a quick prototype of a game for you folks to check out. It's based off a couple inspirations -- the first being one of my favorite XKCD comics. Another being a statement by a rocket scientist friend of mine about moving (and docking) while in orbit. Counterintuitively, to get your ship to another object in orbit, you can't just aim your ship there. The fact that both objects are orbiting (and thus in rotating reference frames) is very important. Centrifugal forces appear (yes, really!).

Anyway, the game is pretty simple. You control a spacecraft, are dodging large satellites, and shooting at space debris. *But* you'll have to take centrifugal forces into account.

So like I said, the game at the moment is a prototype. I built it a while ago to test the idea, and then never made it full-fledged. It's basic at its core, and I'm still trying to figure out what sort of extensions I'd like to add in. So I thought I'd post it here and let you all play with it a bit, see what parts of it catch your fancy. Before I send you off to the link, a disclaimer:

-It is rough
-The instructions are sparse
-The game is really hard to win right now, so don't worry about 'finishing' it. (I never have)

You'll find the game here. It is password protected (as my 'unreleased' games typically are), and the password is 'rocket'

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robly18
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by robly18 » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:59 am

I like it. For some reason, however, I never find these things counter intuitive. Probably has something to do with how much I've played Kerbal Space Program.

I have a friend who I do believe would LOVE this. Would you mind if I showed him this game and told him the password?

Also, a few suggestions. First of all, I find Earth to be a bit too tiny. Could you make it bigger?
Secondly, I think a docking simulator would be a good idea. Why not make it so your goal is to dock with a satellite SOMEWHERE in orbit, but you don't know where it is. However, it has to be distinguishable from other satellites. Make it blue or something. Anyway, your goal is to dock(Read: crash) with it. Anyway,there are other satellites and, worse, space garbage. If any of these collides with your ship, you die. Anyway, you have a space gun, but unlike the current version you have limited ammo, so use it wisely. Also, you can kill satellites, but it takes 7 shots. Make you have 2 ammo for every trash there is in orbit, plus 10 per every satellite. This way, if you use your ammo wisely, you can annihilate everything in orbit and have a clear path to the goal!

Anyway, more. You could add a radar where you can see a trail of where you've been, kind of like in the gravity simulator. But make it fade over time. This should help figuring out if you're at the periapsis or apoapsis.

Oh, also, make the thrusters weaker. Whenever I try to make a lower orbit I always end up falling into the ocean even though I've merely tapped the space bar.
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by A Random Player » Fri Jul 05, 2013 9:28 am

This is cool! I'm thinking there should be an option to view your ship and earth in a nonrotating reference frame, for one. And display the forces (togglable). And display the orbit, and maybe the line your bullets will move in.
Also, can you make it so we can see the entire earth (maybe an option)?
robly18 wrote:I like it. For some reason, however, I never find these things counter intuitive. Probably has something to do with how much I've played Kerbal Space Program.

I have a friend who I do believe would LOVE this. Would you mind if I showed him this game and told him the password?

Also, a few suggestions. First of all, I find Earth to be a bit too tiny. Could you make it bigger?
Secondly, I think a docking simulator would be a good idea. Why not make it so your goal is to dock with a satellite SOMEWHERE in orbit, but you don't know where it is. However, it has to be distinguishable from other satellites. Make it blue or something. Anyway, your goal is to dock(Read: crash) with it. Anyway,there are other satellites and, worse, space garbage. If any of these collides with your ship, you die. Anyway, you have a space gun, but unlike the current version you have limited ammo, so use it wisely. Also, you can kill satellites, but it takes 7 shots. Make you have 2 ammo for every trash there is in orbit, plus 10 per every satellite. This way, if you use your ammo wisely, you can annihilate everything in orbit and have a clear path to the goal!

Anyway, more. You could add a radar where you can see a trail of where you've been, kind of like in the gravity simulator. But make it fade over time. This should help figuring out if you're at the periapsis or apoapsis.

Oh, also, make the thrusters weaker. Whenever I try to make a lower orbit I always end up falling into the ocean even though I've merely tapped the space bar.
Interestingly, I find Earth to be a bit big.
And this is a great idea!
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19683
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by 19683 » Fri Jul 05, 2013 11:22 am

testtubegames wrote:Here's a quick prototype of a game for you folks to check out. It's based off a couple inspirations -- the first being one of my favorite XKCD comics. Another being a statement by a rocket scientist friend of mine about moving (and docking) while in orbit. Counterintuitively, to get your ship to another object in orbit, you can't just aim your ship there. The fact that both objects are orbiting (and thus in rotating reference frames) is very important. Centrifugal forces appear (yes, really!).

Anyway, the game is pretty simple. You control a spacecraft, are dodging large satellites, and shooting at space debris. *But* you'll have to take centrifugal forces into account.

So like I said, the game at the moment is a prototype. I built it a while ago to test the idea, and then never made it full-fledged. It's basic at its core, and I'm still trying to figure out what sort of extensions I'd like to add in. So I thought I'd post it here and let you all play with it a bit, see what parts of it catch your fancy. Before I send you off to the link, a disclaimer:

-It is rough
-The instructions are sparse
-The game is really hard to win right now, so don't worry about 'finishing' it. (I never have)

You'll find the game here. It is password protected (as my 'unreleased' games typically are), and the password is 'rocket'
I'm down to 3 pieces of tras :H!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Last edited by 19683 on Sun Jul 07, 2013 2:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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A Random Player
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by A Random Player » Fri Jul 05, 2013 2:47 pm

Heh, I made it to 4730024.8 altitude but lagged out. (Slightly above the middle of the left edge, there's angle and altitude)
$1 = 100¢ = (10¢)^2 = ($0.10)^2 = $0.01 = 1¢ [1]
Always check your units or you will have no money!

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robly18
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by robly18 » Sat Jul 06, 2013 10:27 am

I just had a though. What if as opposed to thrusting, you could shoot to gain or lose kinetic energy? It would reinforce the physics aspect of the game.
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19683
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by 19683 » Sat Jul 06, 2013 4:57 pm

Can you add a way to zoom out?
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19683
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by 19683 » Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:55 pm

Is it possible for your s :Hots to orbit t :He Eart :H?
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robly18
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by robly18 » Sat Jul 06, 2013 8:13 pm

19683 wrote:Is it possible for your s :Hots to orbit t :He Eart :H?
Sadly, probably to avoid that, Andy made shots fade after a while. Theoretically, however, it's possible.
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19683
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Re: Centrifugal Game

Post by 19683 » Sun Jul 07, 2013 2:56 pm

I'm down to 1 piece of tras :H!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Almost t :Here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Binomial Theorem: ((a+b)^n)= sum k=0->k=n((n!(a^(n-k))(b^k))/(k!(n-k)!))

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