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Adding Power to my Strategy Game

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Stefan Hendriks


In the incubator week I built another ‘resource’: electricity, aka power

What does the ‘power’ resource do?

Power is mainly used to limit the players abilities and have consequences building structures. Power plants produce power, other structures consume. This way you need to balance out your spending. For instance in Dune 2 Rocket Turrets are very effective defense mechanisms, but they cost a lot of power resources.


In this game I built the following limitations when a player consumes more power than that is produced(consumption > production):

  • construction speed is reduced to 50% of original speed
  • harvest deposit speed is reduced to 50% of original speed

I can think of other negative effects for ‘low power’ scenarios, and I’ll experiment them along the way. Without these negative consequences there is no need to build power producing entities at all. Their role is to restrict you in a way and think a bit more how to spend your money.


A few thoughts about Power and ‘Food’

There is a distinction between “food” (which limits how many units you can have) versus “power” in RTS games. Where power brings limitation in game mechanics, like slowing down production of units or not able to use. Other games, like Warcraft use a food aspect. You need to build farms to increase your capacity to build your army. And even food supply has a max amount. Command & Conquer does not really have a hard food limit shown to the user, although there are limits. I think a ‘food’ aspect, is a great way to make a player think about when to expand your base or when to expand your army.



This feature was estimated to take ~ 4 hours. It actually took around 8 hours to build.

As you can see, it is very easy to be optimistic with estimations.



In this demo I’ll show you the feature live along with a dive in the code!

View the full article

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