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There are currently 29 users playing Freelancer on 41 servers.
January. 29, 2023
Discovery Freelancer: Mod of the Year Top-100 Feature Freelancer Mod News
Posted by Igiss on 2010/1/9 4:20:22 (39508 reads) News by the same author

Discovery Freelancer is most widely known as a mod with a large server playerbase: the online count of the official RP server regularly reaches 200 players. Server statistics lead to a certain amount of criticism related to the fact that server online count has nothing to do with the qualities of the mod. So, apart from the huge playerbase, what is Discovery all about?

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The mod is designed to expand the boundaries of original Freelancer. Story continues 16 years to the future from the Freelancer single-player campaign events. Some of the distinguishing features are more than 70 new populated systems, with large new regions like the House of Gallia and Nomad space, enhanced trade system, and improved RP potential. Like most FL mods these days, Discovery has a set of relatively standard features like numerous new ship models, weapons, equipment and NPC improvements.

Along with Crossfire, Shattered Worlds and Freeworlds, Discovery recently became one of the Freelancer mods that reached ModDB.com's 2009 Mod of the Year Top-100. The Starport was one of the websites that promoted the Top-100 vote among the community members; the site also gave the Top-100 finalists a chance to post a main page feature article describing their mods, which we are doing now. We would also like to thank everyone who voted for Discovery and other Freelancer mods on the Mod of the Year contest. The voting within the Top-100 still continues, and there's still time to vote for your favourite candidates!

Generally, what is new in Discovery 4.85? The year is 817 After Settlement (A.S.), 16 years after the single-player campaign of Freelancer, and one year after Discovery 4.84 took place. A Sirius-wide war is on the brink of engulfing the sector. While Kusari pushes its onslaught against Bretonia deep into the Leeds system, Bretonia attempts to surround Kusari forces in Tau-31. Liberty attacks Rheinland in Bremen and Hudson, and Rheinland has to pull back to defend its own borders. As if this was not enough, in late 817 the Independent Miners Guild encountered a large number unknown ships in the Orkney system. The ships belonged to a rebel group formed within the long-lost House of Gallia, the existence of which remained unknown for centuries. Creation of a path into Gallia adds a new, powerful, player to the scene, and no one can tell what goals the new House will pursue in these troubled times. Rumors arise that the nation of France was betrayed during the Exodus, making historians and politicians of various Houses search deep into archives to find out what truly happened more than 1000 years ago in Sol.

Increased development time and an increased number of developers allowed to finalize all features we were planning to implement, and make 4.85 the largest ever update for Discovery mod, which now became of the few mods that actually add more to the game than the original has. We introduced 79 brand new ships with new models, with over 30 previously included ships completely re-designed. Accurate hitboxes had been implemented for almost all ships, old and new. More than a hundred new weapon and equipment types have been added, many having custom models of their own, as well as custom weapon projectile and hit effects. Out of eight dozen new systems Discovery has, more than a half received significant updates, and 11 new ones were included, all of them following much higher quality standards than in previous versions.

The mod has a renewed balance system for weapons, equipment and ships, plus a fully revamped economy system that provides profitable routes for all locations and factions. To add depth to the new economy, 46 new commodity types were introduced, and nearly all commodities (including original ones) received new detailed icons. The role-playing ID system (used on the official server and most other servers running our mod) has received 53 new IDs with clear and detailed descriptions. The new version also contains about 7000 new and rewritten infocard texts for various new and old ships, items, and places.

For those who love numbers, here are some statistics:
- 260 player flyable ships in the game total, of which 225 are introduced by Discovery;
- About 110 new player flyable ship models introduced by version 4.85;
- 134 systems in the game total, of which 79 are introduced by Discovery;
- 11 new systems in 4.85, with about 30 systems receiving significant updates in the latest version;
- 448 bases in the game total, of which about 275 are introduced by Discovery;
- 91 factions in the game total, 44 new factions added by Discovery, of which 11 were introduced by version 4.85;
- Over 100 new weapons introduced in 4.85, upping the number of new Discovery weapons above 200;
- 46 new commodities introduced in 4.85, with multiple new trade routes;
- 117 role-playing IDs in Discovery, of which 53 introduced by version 4.85;
- About 10,000 new infocard texts introduced by Discovery, of which about 7,000 added or rewritten for 4.85.

The integrated Discovery automatic updater allows to download and apply new updates easily without having to re-download and re-install the whole package. The updater does not restrict offline play, and it is still possible to play single or run a LAN server without an internet connection.

Right now, development of the next version of Discovery, 4.86, is in progress. We have plans to complete the central systems of the House of Gallia, add a number of other new systems, continue to improve the role-playing system, trade routes, and balance. Version 4.85 is also regularly updated. Three updates were released to date, and Update 4 is still being actively worked on.

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