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February 22, 2013

Category: News

Author: Charles

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Concealed Intent is about stealth, or at least that is the aim (the current build needs more work on balance). But how can you be stealthy in space? Well, space is big and empty . Thus finding something can be like looking for a needle in a haystack. On the other hand, there is nowhere for the needle to hide - to stay hidden it needs to fade into the background as much as possible.

How easily a ship can be detected is determined by the amount of noise it produces. Here noise is not sound - there are no sound waves transmitted across the vacuum of space. Instead, it is anything the ship may do that signals its presence. A big ship may blot out stars as it passes; heat from engines can be detected against the cold of the void; and, lasers can be tracked back to their origin. Nearly anything a ship can do will also increase the ability of those around to detect it.

On this basis, noise in Concealed Intent is distance. The more noise a ship produces, the further away it can be detected. Over time, more information about the detected ship is discovered as the level of detection increases. Eventually a firing solution can be calculated so that a beam of coherent light a few millimeters in diameter can cross thousands of kilometers to strike an evasive enemy. Although all these actions only make the detecting ship more easily detected!

This is the core gameplay mechanic in Concealed Intent. Using drones, probes, mines and decoys to detect your enemies with the minimum of action so that they can’t detect you.