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What's up with the non used units?

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43 days ago
So I was browsing some units in zero k (Website.) to catch up on my knowledge. When I saw there is such a thing as un-used units. What's up with them, why aren't they included?
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The answer to that varies by unit.

Nebula and its Spicula drone appear in the campaign and a (possibly no longer functional) standalone mission. A shielded air unit poses some balance and design issues so it's unlikely to make it into the core game in its current state, but it is functional as a unit.

The Sunlance turret (an unused building) also appears in the campaign. Sunlance acts a lot like a stronger, more expensive Stinger, so those two turrets would step on each others' toes if they coexisted in the core game.

Sonar Station (the other unused building) used to be in the game, but when sea mechanics were reworked it was no longer needed. Similar applies to Surfboard, a sea transport which was very rarely used and required a disproportionate amount of dev work to keep bug-free.

Most of the others are models in search of a purpose. Every so often there is talk about putting a Kestrel-like unit in the game; it may happen someday. Lancelet was considered for addition in the ship factory rework some years back, and if a second primarily-water factory is added someday it may find a place there. Eclipse is an interesting visual design but as a unit design hews a bit close to Likho. Vanquisher's model is basically two Corsairs smooshed together, so it's unlikely to make it into the game.

Trisula, Morningstar and Daimyo actually are used in the game, sort of; Bolas is much like Trisula but with a different weapon, and Siren combines the model and secondary weapon of Daimyo with the primary weapon of Morningstar.

The unused chicken units are probably leftovers from a chickens redesign.
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43 days ago
If a new unit does make it's way into the game, what does that look like. Does a random planet just pop into everyone's campaign?
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The units added to the game since the campaign launched have (up until now, anyway) been added as unlocks to existing missions. I don't recall whether you need to beat the mission a second time to acquire new additions.
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43 days ago
The unused units are mostly leftover models or units that only reached the modelling phase of implementation. There is a bit of "I didn't ask for this, how would this unit work?" for units like Nebula and Kestrel. Lancelet uses the tacnuke model though. We're unlikely to be able to clean up the unused units since a lot of mods seem to include them.

New units are often implemented all at once, rather than sitting in a near-complete form as an unused unit. The model of an unused unit may become a new unit, but it is unlikely they will have much similarity in stats (or maybe even in design).

I recall unlocks for new units applying to existing campaigns without redoing the mission. The recent new units have fleshed out factories rather than added a whole new dimension. This makes it easy enough to add the unit to whichever mission matches that aspect of the factory. For example, the Djinn mission is about sneaking around in rivers and attacking up coasts. Adding Lobster to this mission made sense as it is good at attacking up coasts.
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43 days ago
quote:
Every so often there is talk about putting a Kestrel-like unit in the game; it may happen someday

Arguably with the Raven getting a homing projectile, that day has in fact happened!
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42 days ago
Wasn't Juggernaut also as unused unit now? I never saw it in battle but remember that there was such unit.
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42 days ago
quote:
Wasn't Juggernaut also as unused unit now? I never saw it in battle but remember that there was such unit.

Looking through the git repo, there was a Juggernaut. It was renamed to the Jugglenaut way back in 2010, and then removed some time after. This, of course, has no relation to the current Jugglenaut, which was formerly called Sumo, and can be produced in the Jumpbot Factory (the old Jugglenaut was a strider).
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41 days ago
I recall Juggernaut (a Paladin-weight Strider with gravity guns, Krow guns and more HP than Det) was renamed to Jugglenaut at some point. I think it was removed for not having a model, and it was fairly boring anyway.
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