Helium Rain

Devblog

Helium Rain economy

Let's talk about Helium Rain's core gameplay - the economic model that runs the game.

In Helium Rain, you play as a company owner. You can trade resources with other factions, build ships, stations, or even take control of resource-rich areas, depending on your company’s power. Your company can focus on military aspects, but the economy is still at the heart of the game.

The game is built with realism in mind, so instead of building a fake world that behaves like it’s living, as other games do, we decided to simulate an actual world.

The game’s world is highly dynamic, because the starting point is quite small. Your competitors will evolve just like you. Some of them have their base close to you, in a giant space station that acts as a capital to the game’s world, others operate on distant moons.

Companies

Companies are factions in the game. Companies in Helium Rain have basically replaced countries : they build their own military fleets, offer housing to civilians, have diplomatic ties with other factions, on top of the usual business activities. They usually specialize in some aspect of the economy, just like in the real world.

Some companies are small businesses that you could topple, other are structural to the economy. Attacking the largest companies is risky in multiple ways : they won’t even notice you in early game, and when you are strong enough to damage them, the economic fallback will also damage you. It’s often a bad idea to destroy your food or ammunition provider, and too much destruction in war can lead to long-term depression for the entire world.

Gameplay

In early game, trading is mostly about finding good deals for resources. You need to find a cheap seller, load your ship with cargo and sell these wares to a station needing it. This actually helps the economy - if you don’t do it, someone else has to.

Once you have enough funds, you will be able to buy more ships, then you will be able to build stations. End-game players will probably try to be self-sufficient so that warfare and diplomatic setbacks have less impact on their finances, but a pacific player can perfectly rely on other companies as well.

Since trading is so essential to gameplay, the game features a lot of menus and tools to help you. The main gameplay hub is the orbital map, which is a general map of the game world. You don’t have much detail on this map, but it acts as a starting point for all decisions. Clicking on a sector brings you detailed information for this area.

The sector menu is the next important tool, as it lists all objects in the sector, inspect resource production and stocks. This is where you will select trading partners, refuel your fleet, find a station to dock at, a ship to upgrade or a station to build. Each sector offers information on the resources needed there, so that you can understand the local economy. Resources can also be shown globally, helping you understand which trade route will bring you the most revenue.

Trade routes are automated trading commands for your fleets. You can set up complex chains of operations to sell your products, buy raw resources, or just trade commodities between third parties.

Fun facts

The economic model allows for deep interaction with the world.

Thanks for reading !

Helium Rain will be available in Early Access for Windows & Linux PC on August 18, 2017.
Copyright© Deimos Games 2017