Ship Design

From StarMade Wiki

This article describes basic and intermediate ship design.

The Basics

For a ship to be considered a ship, it must have the following components


While a ship can technically consist of just a Ship Core, this has mediocre thrust, no defense should it be attacked, and serves no functional purpose other than quick transport over small distances. The same can be said for a ship with just a Ship Core, a single Power Reactor Module and a single Thruster Module: such entities are often referrred to as "shuttles" or "spacebikes", and are also used to quickly and easily travel over small distances (less than a sector, normally).

Hull and Armour

Hull and Armour is a major means of defending against incoming attacks, providing basic protection and increasing the overall survivability of a ship. Door blocks also have statistics similar to armor blocks of the same tier, but do not contribute any SHP. This is because doors can become intangible (when opened), and could be exploited to make invulnerable (or much harder to kill) ships if they contributed SHP to a ship.

Hull and Armor Statistics
Block HP Armor AHP SHP Mass
Hull 75 0% 50 5 0.05
Glass Door 75 0% 50 0 0.05
Standard Armor 100 60% 75 5 0.15
Plex Door 100 60% 75 0 0.15
Advanced Armor 250 75% 100 5 0.25
Crystal Armor 250 75% 100 5 0.25
Blast Door 250 75% 100 0 0.25


Production

The cost of manufacturing armor is proportional to its strength, and the recipes for all types of armor and door are listed below:

Hull and Glass Doors

Production Info
Produced in a Basic Factory Basic Factory.png
RequiresTo create
Alloyed Metal Mesh
x1
Alloyed Metal Mesh.png Grey Hull
x1
Grey Hull.png
Crystal Composite
x1
Crystal Composite.png
Production Info
Produced in a Basic Factory Basic Factory.png
RequiresTo create
Crystal Composite
x5
Crystal Composite.png Glass Door
x1
Glass Door.png

Standard Armor and Plex Doors

Production Info
Produced in a Standard Factory Standard Factory.png
RequiresTo create
Grey Hull
x1
Grey Hull.png Grey Standard Armor
x1
Grey Standard Armor.png
Standard Hardener
x1
Standard Hardener.png
Production Info
Produced in a Basic Factory Basic Factory.png
RequiresTo create
Alloyed Metal Mesh
x15
Alloyed Metal Mesh.png Plex Door
x1
Plex Door.png

Advanced Armor, Crystal Armor and Blast Doors

Production Info
Produced in a Advanced Factory Advanced Factory.png
RequiresTo create
Grey Standard Armor
x1
Grey Standard Armor.png Grey Advanced Armor
x1
Grey Advanced Armor.png
Advanced Hardener
x1
Advanced Hardener.png


Production Info
Produced in a Advanced Factory Advanced Factory.png
RequiresTo create
White Standard Armor
x1
White Standard Armor.png White Crystal Armor
x1
White Crystal Armor.png
Parseen Crystal
x6
Parseen Crystal.png
Production Info
Produced in a Advanced Factory Advanced Factory.png
RequiresTo create
Varat Capsule
x38
Varat Capsule.png Blast Door
x1
Blast Door.png

Armor Positioning

Although Hull and Armor blocks can serve decoratively, armor's primary use is to mitigate damage, and this purpose is best fulfilled through careful placement.

The front of a ship is often most at risk, and so heavy armor plating on the front profile of a vessel is usually advised. Depending on ship size, this may exceed ten meters in thickness. An overall "skin" of armor on a ship is also common, and is usually 1 or 2 meters thick, with thicker plating at points of high risk. To increase the difficulty for intruders to access it, the Ship Core (and the room it is situated in) may be armored, usually including Blast Doors in the entrance to this room. Weapon computers and other vital system controllers, being quite vulnerable and of significant importance to a ship's operation, are often kept in a separate cluster with significant armor plating, reducing the likelihood of a system outage due to computer damage. Power Auxiliaries are also rather vulnerable and, given that they will explode dangerously, should be encased in armor, and often interspersed with armored plates to absorb internal damage (making sure that these do not break up the Power Auxiliary grouping).

Coloring

Hull and Armor blocks can also be colored, though this is rather tedious to accomplish:

  • Hull is colored by running Grey Hull and Paint of the desired color through a Basic Factory.
  • Standard Armor is colored by running a colored Hull block and a Standard Hardener through a Standard Factory.
  • Advanced Armor is colored by running colored Standard Armor and an Advanced Hardener through an Advanced Factory.
  • Crystal Armor is produced by running colored Standard Armor and a number of Crystal blocks through an Advanced Factory.

Weaponry

Weaponry is necessary for any ship to damage other entities. Weapons can also be linked to other weapons, creating combinations that modify the statistics of the primary weapon. This is explained in detail on a separate page.

Main article: Weapon Systems

As well as basic weapons and their combinations, Effects can be added to further modify the output of a weapon, specializing it in various ways.

Main article: Effects


Defense

Defense, like Weaponry, is one of the most important aspects of any combat ship. While defense is very commonly found in the form of shields (Shield Capacitors and Shield-Rechargers), it's also just as prominent in the form of armor and Effects.

Shields are the simplest and most abundant forms of tanking a ship, and simply involves spreading large amounts of Shield Capacitors and Shield-Rechargers throughout a ship. Like Thruster Modules, Shield Capacitors and Shield-Rechargers do not benefit from adjacent blocks of the same type, and as such can be thrown around carelessly, either in groups or individually, and are often used to fill up small holes throughout ships. If a player is focusing on more of an armor tank, then it's not uncommon for shield systems to act as a layer of system armor, similar to how Thrusters can be used, protecting the more crucial systems beneath it.

Armor is the most prominent form of tanking a ship, and is just as simple as shielding. Armor inherently takes up the majority of the ship and acts as it's hull, and as such is usually buffing a ship's armor HP from the get-go. In order to effectively armor tank a ship, it's recommended to use multiple layers of armor, with Standard Armor being the most abundant armor type (making up the exterior armor plates/hull), with Advanced Armor making up the interior and having Basic Hull for details, to add to the aesthetics. All of this makes for a quality armor set-up already without the proper placement, and can make a ship much more comfortable in terms of cost. Layering armor is also quite common, with having multiple armor layers on the exterior so as to provide increased protection to the systems on the inside.

Effects, while being able to manipulate weaponry and specialize it, also have various "passive" abilities, all of which benefit the ship in some way when activated: These are detailed on the Effects page.

Using these Effects will allow a ship to reach it's full potential, whether it's in combat or not. For example, an armor tanked ship would generally use Punch-Through Effect and Piercing Effect to increase the effectiveness of its armor, while a shield tanked ship would use Ion Effect to increase the effectiveness of its shields. A fighter may use Overdrive Effect in order to provide increased mobility, decreasing the odds of larger vessels being able to successfully hit it.

Other considerations

  • Multiple people on a single ship
  • Damage and repair

Instructional Videos

The following YouTubers are known to make high quality builds and instructional videos for building ships.