Now that I have a more unified user interface setup I can start integrating more of the core features of the game. A big part of a colony survival, of course, is research projects which unlock new place-able objects, recipes and more.
Research is handled by your colonists at the research station after choosing what research project to be worked on. I’m still working on ensuring a scientist doesn’t starve himself to death while researching forever. Research can be sped up by either having a higher level scientist or having more than one scientist/research station researching at the same time.
Creating the code implementation of the research system was fairly easy. The hardest part, so far, has been determining the order of research projects as some research projects have to be researched before others. The research technologies really define the flow and pacing of the game and I keep re-arranging things constantly trying to find the perfect balance. I think I just need to get an arrangement in and make a better decision after some external play testing.
The below image is not final and does not include all planned objects, but gives a general idea of the research break down. Using XMind to layout the technologies and it provides a visual way of quickly looking at the break down.