Features for navigation - horizon / navbuoys

The biggest gameplay/immersion issue I’m having is that the top down view distances the player from the sea itself, and from the sense of being on a dark ocean with unknown heights and depths above and below.

The ideal enhancement would be an inset window showing the horizon. The simplest implementation of this would be a horizontal box with lights along it, marking the position of anything visible (real or imaginary) with lights in the appropriate colour. This would mitigate the effect of having (for instance) a long east-west view but short north-south; it would also mitigate the effect of having cards and HUD elements on top of the map. More complex implementations would be to show the eerie glow of monsters, the lamps of ships and other dynamic element, right the way up to showing the outline of nearby land.

The top down view also creates minor navigation issues that are nonetheless significant when trying to minimize terror, as well as fuel and supplies consumption. A droppable navigation buoy would mitigate this AND has the possibility for a certain amount of fun… such as helpful things like naming the buoy and having a buoy in sight slightly decrease the increase rate of terror, as well as annoyances like having it moved by monsters or stolen by pirates, and horrors like having marooning crazed zailors on it, or certain monsters being drawn by it.

I continue to putter about happily and look forward to more content…

To add to these nice ideas - I have mentioned before about whether (whither!?) keeping the chart from character to character is actually useful, as the world is always the same, and exploring is a good source of fragments.

However, it might be interesting to see if having a good navigator would help above and beyond the stat increase you get from them. For example, a navigator could turn on a feature like navbuoys, or allow for a map with sections already charted due to previous voyages. What do others think?

For me it depends on how the randomization for new characters will work. The ideal (and probably easiest to implement) would be to inherit “a few fragments of chart” - places that you know exist, but don’t know precisely where they are. This would mean that the whole map could be randomized, and the known places would be disconnected by stretches of unknown ocean.

Yes - I like that idea. It can be implemented easily enough. However, I also appreciate that the world’s geography is not random in this game, so I’d like the chart fragments to be perhaps ‘rumours’ of where some bigbads are, or the location of where objects are to be found - in pre-existing places. So the map might say - search for a mysterious artefact in these 3 places, one of them will have it…

But the oceans will be random:

“But once you get beyond the trade lanes, the Sunless Sea is unexplored, and the map will change every time you play”

I seem to recall Failbetter saying in the early days of Sunless Sea’s kickstarter that the map is fixed only near London. A certain distance out, the game will start randomising the map. So passing down a chart as a legacy will force the game not to re-randomise the map you’ve already discovered. Useful if you’ve got a good trade route going on or something like that. And if you don’t hand it down, then anything past a certain distance from London could be in totally new locations.

So if that’s all still true, then there will be a use for passing a chart as a legacy in future once the map is bigger and the randomisation gets involved.

Yes - that is exactly what I’d like - great!

[color=#009900]NinjaComedian is utterly correct about everything.[/color][li]

Don’t we already have navigation buoys of a sort? That’s what I figure those lights in the middle of the Zee were. Or maybe they’re just trade lane markers.