Target Range OXP
A Target Range is found in all rich systems with stable governments: Communist, Confederacy, Democracy, and Corporate State. It is located in space near the witchpoint and marked with a beacon bearing the icon shown at left. Follow the beacon on your space compass; for those without an Advanced Space Compass, the range may be difficult to find. There are frequently one or two large ships (Boas and Anacondas, not behemoths!) near it, so looking around "past" the witchpoint beacon sometimes pays off.
Ranges consist of a beacon buoy with some number of target drone ships flying around it. The drones are under autopilot, but are bound to the buoy. If you chase one far enough away from the buoy, it will wander away from the range.
The beacon buoy can be identified by its blue and green flashers. There's been talk of charging a fee for using the Range, but currently the rich inhabitants of the systems have been paying all expenses. In fact, they pay you one credit per ship for helping them clear out their scrapyards.
- Try not to destroy the buoy, or else it can be hard to find the Range afterward, and the ships will all wander away. The buoy will be restored after you dock or exit the system.
- The target drones are all standard Oolite ships, and all include "(Target)" in their name. There is a simple formula for adding a new ship type as a target drone, which will appear here soon.
- Drones are marked as Offenders, so you can legally shoot them, and each has a one-credit bounty.
- Drones will run, but will not fight back.
- No kill is awarded when destroying a drone.
- When a drone is destroyed, a new drone (or sometimes two) appears near the beacon buoy.
- Drones will not drop cargo, but occasionally leave metal fragments behind. You are welcome to scoop these if you wish.
This OXP is suitable for beginners. In fact, it is intended for them. I remember in the old 90s game Wing Commander there was a "flight simulator" that let you practice the basic elements of the game without risking actual life and equipment. There's no such simulator in Oolite, but the Target Range is a small bit of help along the same lines.
There are other target-practice aids in other OXPs, including Lave Academy and The Feudal States that I know of. They don't use real ships, though, so this might be useful in that way. I originally created this OXP as part of an attempt at creating a flavor OXP for Feudal systems, but had to abandon that. Thankfully, Ramirez picked it up and ran with it, creating something amazing and far beyond what I had ever imagined. He kept the target practice, but in a different form, so I figured it was worth my time to resurrect this old chestnut.
The Target Range is fun, but should not be mistaken for actual combat experience. These ships don't shoot back, nor do they pull any of the other tricks that real ships do when under fire. However, it does give new commanders a chance to gain some experience spotting ships at a distance, tracking them, keeping them in the crosshairs, and lets them see how their weapons work under controlled conditions. If you need to improve your aim, or see how much punishment a stock Python or Asp can take, or find out how long before your beam laser overheats, this is the place for it.
The OXP can be downloaded via Caracal's website here. As far as I know, it requires Oolite 1.74 at minimum; I have tested it with 1.74.1 on Linux. Please report any bugs or issues to Caracal on the Oolite Forums!
Target Range OXP by Caracal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.