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Occult machinery – Dev Blog 25

Fringe Planet is full of magical energy – it is a place covered with ley lines, haunted by spirits and overseen by eldritch entities. Magic is power, and the peons can harness this magic by capturing spirits – draining them of their occult power and using it to power various machines that will keep a base warm and alive.

We’ve spoken about how spirits can be caught in spirit houses (you can read about that here). But what do the peons do when they have successfully caught a spirit? Well there are three items that are vital for harnessing the occult energies these spirits contain.

Outside storage units

Spirit Boxes

Spirit box - render

The spirit box is a temporary container that will allow a peon to unload a spirit from a spirit house. These are items that need to be constructed, and it’s probably a wise idea to make sure you have plenty of these in stock. When a peon is told to empty a spirit house, it will go grab a box, then head to the spirit house, and will return with a box with a trapped spirit inside. It’s highly advisable to have a Spirit Storage Unit to unload these boxes into – though the boxes may be left around in storage, a spirit may escape from them – and this could wreak havoc in your base. A spirit that has been trapped inside a box and that manages to escape will be very angry indeed. It may be possible to store spirit boxes away from your main base in order to lower the risk, but an angry spirit will move very fast and will be looking for vengeance.

Finally, it is important to note that spirit boxes are never consumed – they are used as a holding/transport device. When loaded into a spirit storage unit, or a spirit power generator, the spirit box becomes empty, and can be re-used. Spirit boxes can be destroyed however – either by a strong spirit escaping, or by a storyteller event.

Spirit Storage Unit

Spirit Storage Unit

A spirit storage unit provides a certain number of slots for storing spirits in a secure and safe way. Once a spirit box has been unloaded into a storage unit, it is virtually impossible for the spirits inside to escape. Strong influences (such as storyteller events or random events, or simply bad luck) – may cause an escape, but at a very low chance. Hardly worth mentioning the consequences of a horde of angry spirits escaping from a spirit storage unit.

It is for this reason that it is a good idea to have a few Circle of Bindings located around spirit storage units – just in case. As mentioned, a spirit storage unit will only hold a certain number of spirits – it is possible to upgrade this number with research, but it might be necessary to build multiple storage units if you are farming a lot spirits. The strength of a spirit doesn’t matter, just the number contained within the storage unit.

When a spirit is needed to power a generator, a peon will grab an empty spirit box, go to a spirit storage unit, select a spirit from it and load up the spirit box. Initially the spirit picked will be a random one – however later upgrades will give you greater control of the type of spirit to be removed (based upon it’s strength, or it’s elemental consistency).

One of the later upgrades will allow you to link all your spirit storage units together, meaning that all spirits can be accessed from any storage unit, as well as creating a global set of slots across the floating island.

Spirit Power Generator

Spirit power generator

There are all sorts of machines in Fringe Planet – conveyor belts, automated arcane builders, smelters and many more. All of these require power. But rather than having the peons hand crank these machines, research has allowed the peons to use spirits to power them. Spirit power generators convert spirits trapped inside spirit boxes into clean, wireless energy. As the spirit power generator provides wireless energy, the spirit is slowly drained of power until it fizzles out of existence. This is why it is required to keep farming spirits – to keep a constant flow of energy.

Spirit power generators will provide power in a certain radius all around it. The number of machines in this radius, and how busy they are will determine how quickly a spirit gets drained completely of energy.  Peons will become automatically aware when a spirit needs replacing, and will prioritise this job. All spirits are transported in spirit boxes, but a peon may take one either directly from a spirit house, or from a nearby spirit storage unit.

Optimum placement of spirit power generators are very important – they release a lot of occult energy constantly – and if multiple fields overlap, some very strange things may happen.

A comftable study



There is a lot more to read about Fringe Planet… why not try:

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