Alpha 10: Research & Development - Research Fields, Domains of Research and Technology Levels

As I said into previous posts, the research & development system is a dynamic one, meaning that the player (and incidentally the AIs) will not follow a fixed tech tree but will have access or not, depending on many factor, to the technosciences.

This dynamic layer is based on research fields in which a faction generate knowledge and so research points. There are finally 20 of these fields grouped into 8 domains of research, for an easier management, here is the list:

  • Aerospace Engineering [Fields: Aerospace Technics, Space Architecture and Space Drives]
  • Astro-Engineering [Fields: Astrophysics and Space Engineering]
  • Biosciences [Fields: Biotechnologies, Medicine and Neuroscience]
  • Culture [Fields: Communication, Entertainment and Memetic Engineering]
  • Ecosciences [Fields: Ecology and Planetology]
  • Industrial Technologies [Fields: Automation, Computing, Industrial Technics and Materials]
  • Nanotechnology [Fields: Mechanical Nanotechnology, Molecular Nanotechnology and Nanomaterials]
  • Physics [Fields: Energy, Nuclear Physics, Particles Physics]

Note: This list is completely final.

By generating knowledge over time, a faction can trigger the access to science and technology breakthroughs called technosciences. The system isn't totally random but is based on a probability based on many factors; this part will be seen in more details in a future post. It also keeps track on what is already discovered to prevent to lose certain coherence.

Research domains use the mean knowledge generated by their research fields to trigger the discovery of theories. Theories doesn't unlock the access to new products and equipments but affect the progress of each research fields depending on a domain that trigger a theory and can also, eventually, affect research fields of other domains.

The research fields trigger the discovery technosciences that must be mastered to be used practically in game, by the access of new equipment, infrastructures and so on.

These fields and domains thus constitute the backbone of the dynamic layer of this system. The player and AI will not manage directly them because they are dependent on how are setups the colonies and additionally if there are also space units that generate knowledge.

Technology levels are used in FARC, as for many strategy games and tabletop sci-fi RPGs, to classify a particular age of knowledge and advancement. This data affect directly the theories and technosciences and is used to indicate the level of complexity of each of them. It is not the only data since a second one, the inner difficulty, exists too.

The list and description of each technology level is below:

  • TL 1 - Industrial Age
  • TL 2 - Robotic Age
  • TL 3 - Information Age (our current real stage)
  • TL 4 - Cyber Age (with practical fusion)
  • TL 5 - Interplanetary Age
  • TL 6 - Transhumanism Age ( including pro-evolution )
  • TL 7 - Singularity Age (sentient AI - first FTL)
  • TL 8 - Interstellar Age
  • TL 9 - Nano-Age (used directly at big scale)
  • TL 10 - Unification Age ( unified theory - nanoswarms )
  • TL 11 - Enlightement Age ( 2nd FTL - matter compilers, interstellar arks, generation ships )
  • TL 12 - Megatech/Quantum Age ( utility fog, non destructive uploading, space megatech )
  • TL 13 - Transcendence Age ( 2nd singularity - ultra tech(by action of ultrasentient AIs) - 3rd FTL )
  • TL 14 - Kardashev Age ( mega astroengineering - Dyson Sphere - Dynamic Orbital Ring)
  • TL 15 - Galactic Age
  • TL 16 - AI Gods Age ( 3rd singularity to AI gods )
  • TL 17 - Dimensional Age
  • TL 18 - Infinity Age     
At the start of the game, the major factions are between a TL 6 and TL 7.
It cans sound a bit convoluted, and perhaps a bit over the head of the game, but we will see.
Obviously the TL18 means the end of the game when a faction reaches it.

That's all for now as a little part of presentation of what will come with the alpha 10. I hope I've been clear, I know that my English is far from perfect.

Stay tuned for upcoming updates :)