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What level of combat features can we expect at launch ?

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DU has more varied possible combat scenario's than any other MMO I'm aware of.


In DU we have the possibility of combat involving:

  • Avatar vs Avatar
  • Avatar vs Construct
  • Construct vs Construct 


All of these battles can potentially take place:

  • on the planet surface (on land)
  • on the planet surface (in or under water) *not planned for launch*
  • in the planetary atmosphere
  • in space


NQ is not a large dev team, and I expect that the combat mechanics for launch will be fairly basic, with things being expanded and refined "after release".


Some aspects of combat may simply be disallowed at launch, for the simple reason that there's not enough time to develop it into a satisfactory state in the limited time available. Otherwise NQ will probably have to postpone launch by 2 years so that they can fully develop all aspects of combat...


What are the minimum combat features you'd expect to see at launch ?

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Given that Avatar vs Avatar and Construct vs Construct were both stretch goals that were hit, I think we can expect both forms of combat to be present in the game at launch.


Now the thing is, by launch here, I'm talking about after beta is officially over, and players are paying subscription fees. This could be a pretty far-off point in time, as we haven't even really started Alpha yet (I'm not really going to count pre-alpha here, given that there will be potentially frequent wipes and limited uptime). We likely won't have any pvp content at all in the alpha stage, and NQ might/should use the later stages of beta to test and balance combat elements.


I suspect that the first round of pvp elements will be pretty simple. We might only get a couple of weapon categories, we might find that the same weapon elements will work in atmosphere, in space, and under water, or that no weapons work underwater and there is 1 class of weapon for atmo, and 1 class of weapon for space. There is also a good chance that weapon range will be pretty limited (as in, no orbital-to-surface weapons).


Even if it is that simple however, that should be enough to do be entertaining for quite a long time. Space Engineers for example only has 1 class of player weapon (4 variations), and 3 different classes of weapon (each with 2 sizes, 2 of which have fixed-versions and turret versions). Even with the limited selection there, pvp and pve combat continues to be very exciting when it doesn't cause the game to crash or KLANG doesn't claim your ship.


DU is in the perfect position to do a lot with very little, there are so many possible variables with constructs that it won't take much weapon variety to create a ton of combat variety.

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