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Ship design

- see the Research options article for all the research options, leading to description of individual installable modules.

Designing your own ships of various hull sizes is definitely one of the most interesting features of the game. There is a lot of different kinds of modules that you can discover through research and then apply to your own design. Usually these come in three differen sizes, having the bigger ones obviously available only on larger hulls.

Hull class

We will talk here about human hull classes as this is the first available race and is an easy start option for any new player, however later on there will be also other races available in the game, which might have different classification, properties and also logic of use of their hull types.

Early hull classes, available to player, are Space station and Colony ship. Each hull class can have exactly one design unlocked for free, without the need of Debens for unlocking them.

Create new design

Once you unlock some design, you can go ahead and start creating it. Newly created designs get some default name, but you can change it on the Modify design screen. Just click on the modify icon next to the design.

Modify design screen allows you to see three tables:
1) First one displays current and modified properties of the design, as you add modules to it.
2) The middle one enumerates all the available slots of the design, with the slot size filter on top.
3) The last one, displayed only once you select one of the slots, lists all the available modules that you can currently add to that design and to that particular slot.

Edit and filter icons

edit nameby clicking on this icon, or on the design name next to it, you will be able to change the name of the currently edited design
filter offwith this option the slots filter will be disabled and all slot sizes of the design will be listed
hugefilters slots for only huge ones. Currently only Juggernaut has this kind of slot and only one. Larger designs, with more than one such slot, are considered to be added in the future
largefilters slots for only large ones. These can be found (1 - 5) on all the larger hulls and are considered as most game changing element in the area of ship designs
standardstandard slots can be found on all hulls, ranging between 1 - 10 standalone slots. Their impact in battle is usually just cosmetic, but some small modules can have significant strategic, or tactical impact

Module types

There are several categories of modules in the Colonize.online, that gives different benefits to the default hull. Following table is just a simple summary. Many modules belong to more than one - these are filtered under any category they belong to.

filter offwith this option, all the available modules will be listed. This might be a good option from the beginning, but later on, you will want to use other options as well
specialUnder this category you can find the most important modules, that usually gives you large strategic or tactical advantage
speedeither it is thrusters, or full sized engines, all such modules can be found under this category
hpmodules that increase ships hull points - integrity strength
armormodules that increase armor - external layer of protection
shieldsmodules that emulates some kind of kinetic, or other energy barrier around the ship
kineticweapon systems that use kinetic energy as means of causing damage to target - guns, cannons, mass drivers..
heatweapon systems that penetrate target with hot, explosive force - rockets, torpedoes...
energyweapon systems based on energy output of some kind - lasers, plasma
ammomodules expanding storage and launch capacity of the ship for bombs and warheads
unitsmodules that expand ships capability to carry fighters, bombers, or other units

Completing the design

It is up to you what you put into individual slots. You don´t even have to use them all, if you want to save some resources and add just a specific feature - as every module installed also comes with a cost of money, or resources that is added to the default values of the hull.

Some module types have exclusivity limitation - you can only have one, or some limited amount of such modules on any design.

Defensive and offensive types of modules are not equal - you can find some more powerfull than others, but also more costly. Of course it greatly depends on what kind of tech stands on the opposing side. If your enemy uses a lot of shields, you will do surprisingly nicely with a lots of kinetic weapons, rather than lasers. To find out more about the relations between defensive and offensive types, check out the Triangle of effectiveness.

Design into production

Once you complete your design, you have to put it into production (via the rellevant button on the panel). Once it is in production, you will be able to produce, or upgrade corresponding hull to the new design in the Orbital drydocs.

Once you build your first ship based on the new design, you will not be able to edit the design anymore. If you want to modify it in the future, you have to get rid of all the design products first. So be carefull when you gift, or sell your design to some other player, because in such case, you will loose control about retirement of the design.

You can downgrade existing design based ships into default hull, via the colony defense screen. Some upgrade costs are retained. Once all the products of the design are gone, you will be able to cancel the design and create a new one instead. Before that, you can only withdraw the design, so no more producsts of it are created by accident.