Learning to fly

GraveShipFlightThis is a boring screenshot;  this really ought to have a video, instead, but there’s still a little more interface work that’s going to be required before I can really fill out a video.  The screenshot here is from my first GraveShip flight.

Right now, the GraveShip handles much like a FPS “noclip” camera (except that it has mass and inertia, and can’t pass through the world);  hold the right mouse button to look around, and use the WASD keys to move.  You can also use space and alt/option for up and down.  Eventually, I’ll provide other control methods, but I’ve become fond of this one, so I’m pretty sure it’ll end up being usable in the final game, even if I also provide simpler ones which will maintain a constant altitude.

To fly the GraveShip, first you click the “Call Graveship” button, which brings a graveship to your location.  You then select the graveship, and click “Pilot” from its context actions.  That automatically moves you onto the graveship, and transfers your control over to the graveship.  Right now, you stand on top of the graveship while piloting it;  that black bar at the bottom of the screenshot is the front edge of the graveship’s top surface.  I don’t really like using so much of the screen like this, so I’ve been thinking about fading the graveship out when you board it, or something of that sort.

Incidentally, just as a minor matter of polish..  if you’re in a region where there’s a graveyard, then summoning the graveship uses that graveyard as a spawn point;  the graveship rises up out of the graveyard, and then zips over to join you.  Similarly, when you dismiss the graveship, it zooms to the graveyard, and then gently lowers itself down into the ground.  If there is no graveyard available, then the graveship drops down from far overhead, and will lift back up into the sky when dismissed.

Right now, there’s no way to get back off of the GraveShip;  the GraveShip is going to need its own UI interface, with “disembark” (or something similar) being one of the options, to get the player back down onto the ground.  At least in the short term, I’ll probably just change the buttons in the button bar at the bottom of the screen to ones which are more appropriate while on board the GraveShip.  (For example, the “Build” button won’t be present when you’re on foot;  building placement is much easier from the GraveShip’s higher vantage point!)