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[Guide] Apricot Software Guide

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:02
by apricotslice
Apricot Mapping Service.
Internal Memo.
From : John Slice CEO
To : All Pilots
Subject : Computer Software fitted to ships.

It has come to my attention that there is some confusion about the role of certain software packages fitted to our ships. In order that the right software is fitted to the right ships, the following is a listing of available software and its purpose.

* Trade Command Mk.1 : Allows a ship with a homebase set to buy wares and sell wares for the homebase.
* Trade Command Mk.2 : Adds no new commands but allows for Custom built commands to be added.
* Trade Command Mk.3 : Allows independent trading as a Sector Trader or Universe Trader. Pilots are assigned and must learn how to use this on the job and are ranked according to their progress. Universe trading cannot begin until Level 8.
* Fight Command Mk.1 : Adds Attack All Enemies command, and Attack Enemies and Protect Ship commands to turrents.
* Fight Command Mk.2 : Provides Gun Auto-Aim on Hud, Adds Attack My Target and Attack Nearest Enemy commands and adds Missile Defense command for turrents.
* Special Commands Software : Allows the automatic collection of wares and collectable asteroids in sector, Station construction by TL's, Move Pilot command and other special commands that may be added to ships for specific purposes.
* Navagation Software : Advanced navigation aids for ship movement, including the new Jumpdrive commands.
* Trade Extention : Allows remote communication with stations for wares purchases where a ship has landed or a satelite is providing coverage. Only needed on the ship that initiates a transaction (not needed on the ship thats docked for the transaction).
* Docking Computer : Auto-docks immediately from within 5km, accessed from command interface of target.
* Seta : Speeds up the passage of time on long journeys. Only needed on a ship giving commands to others, but recommended on all.
* Ecliptic Projector : Establishes the plane of a sector on the hud.
* Strafe Extension : Allows strafe drive for combat. Pre-fitted to all ships.
* Best Buys Locator : Only needed on a ship directing trade operations, it identifies the best location to buy all wares on sale in a sector.
* Best Sell Locator : Only needed on a ship directing trade operations, it identifies the best locations to sell within a sector, all wares on the ship.
* Mineral Scanner : Scans a targetted asteroid to determine what sort of dirt it is rich in and the yeild.
* Freight Scanner : Scans a targetted ship and reveals its shielding, guns and cargo bay contents. Illegal to use if you do not have a local Police License.
* Police License : Race specific, this pays a bounty on all enemy ships killed in that race's space, and allows legal use of a freight scanner.
* System Override Software : Allows the claiming and salvage of Abandoned ships without leaving the cockpit, with a limited range of about 30 meters. Illegal to possess one in space controlled by most races.

The following are non-standard software, installed by executive decision only.

* System Override Software Mk.2 : Allows claiming and salvage of Abandoned ships from 5km away. Undetectable to freight scans.
* Advanced Mineral Scanner : Scans all asteroids within scanner range when ship is moving slowly or stopped.
* DockTL : Allows a transporter device to beam a TS or TP ship onboard a TL or M1 ship for freight delivery.

Software can be purchased from the following places :

Equipment Docks : Trade 1 & 2, Fight 1 & 2, Special, Navigation, Trade Extension, Mineral, Freight, Docking, Seta, Ecliptic.
Trading Stations : Police License.
Teladi EQ Docks : Best Buy, Best Sell, Trade 3, Advanced Mineral Scanner.
Teraacorp HQ : Trade 3.
Goner Temple : Argon Police License.
Pirate Bases : System Override 1 & 2

End Memo.

Apricot Mapping Service.
External Memo.
From : John Slice CEO
To : Julian Brennan
Subject : Its so hard to get good staff these days.

Julian my friend, how are you keeping ?

Are you sure I cannot interest you in a job here ?

Your odd job work for us in the past has been exemplary and I could do with you on staff permanently.

Dont think I've given up on you yet. HaHa. Its so hard to get decent staff these days. Even some of the brighter pilots got themselves killed after the Khaak invasion many of the better ones got conscripted into the race military forces, and quite a few of the new ones simply dont know which way the ship flys.

Do you beleive the memo I had to sent to all pilots the other day ? I've attached a copy for your amusement.

Most of them had no idea what command was attached to what bit of software, and when we inventoried all the ships, we found that most of them had software missing. I swear some of the pilots routinely bounce their ships off asteroids, take damage to fittings and software modules and carry on without noticing anything ! Not to mention combat damage.

I think out of the whole lot of them, only a few of them are even aware of the onboard scripting system, which as you are aware, allows for custom commands to be set up within the computer, or loaded in from another. Where would be be without DockTL for example. A classic example of a 3rd party command which the script engine will load into the ships command interface.

I mean, calling it all "non-standard" software is about all they can understand I think.

And they dont seem to understand that you choose your ship software according to the role of the ship.

I mean, I ask you ?

One of my pilots outfitted a ship for remote trading and included one of everything on it. The ship will never have a pilot, will only ever be under the control of the auto-pilot, and yet this ...(I cant find the right descriptive word here) .... installed seta, docking computer and even an Argon Police License. Yigads !

Another one did the exact opposite. His role was to remote trade a group of freighters and he put the same basic equipment and software on all the ships, including his own. Silly turkey went out into space without a seta (and sent in a memo about boredom in the cockpit), no docking computer (and yes you guessed it, a memo came in on the difficulty of manual docking), and no trading extention on his ship (and yes, I got a memo about the stupidity of having to dock at each station along with the ship doing the trading). Needless to say, this pilot is now driving an M5 (a very old one !) along the Xenon frontier.

BTW, Bob Der, our estwhile and excentric Chief Mechanic, dropped past my office the other day. He has a few more dodges he wants to try out on your ship ! I told him I'd pass the message on. I dont want to know what you have done to that ship of yours, and as long as Bob is not doing it to my ships, I shall remain happy !

In the meantime, he said to point out that the Script Masters have some new and interesting stuff for you if you care to look in edress A few of the new factory management scripts are due to be implemented here shortly. Let you know how they go, you may want to use them yourself. The updated list of Mainline 'non-standard' scripts is now at edress

Next time your in Antigone Memorial, drop in for a drink.

Take care of yourself.



The following is a gem of a post about the factory management for version 2/Bonus Pack. Thanks for a well put post Volition :)
Volition wrote:Ok, here we go. There are 4 ways to automate your buying and selling.

1) Best buy, best sell. This is the most basic way to buy and sell from factories. They don't use jump drives. They don't get pilots. They just go to and from the station buying and selling as you tell them to based on the station's jump range and price settings.

2) Station managed. You pay a one time fee of 28,000 (iirc) credits when you start it up at the station. Once you've paid that fee you never have to pay it again for that station if you turn it on or off from then on. The station manager will use the ships you assign to the station and give control of to it. Not just assigning a home base. You have to have the ship(s) you want to give it undocked and use the command console on the station and add the ship. (Conversely you have to use the remove ship command there to take a ship away from that station manager's control.) Station managed trading ships will buy and sell, never using jump drives and without pilots for the individual ships. So it is just like the best buy and best sell command except, it will try to use the individual ships more efficiently. An individual ship will be able to both buy and sell under station management. You can also fine tune it by prohibiting wares via the command consoles of the individual ships assigned under the station manager. You can set individual ship jump limits or individual ship ware trading limitations. I.E., set a Mercury to only buy energy cells within a 2 jump radius while the Express sells wheat and buys energy cells in a 3 jump radius for the same station. Also what set's it apart from best buy/sell is that the station manager will not send ships under it's control to sectors where you have no property, such as other ships/satellites, and stations. You can use that to your advantage if there are sectors you want your ships to avoid because they are dangerous or whatnot. Also, if a station managed ship is damaged enough, the station manager will send it to a shipyard for repairs.

3) Commercial Agents. Commercial agents are hired pilots assigned to work for your station. After they train enough they can use jump drives to get to and from buying and selling points. You can control their jump limit by setting that at the station they are assigned to work for. The Commercial Agent's advantage is that it can use that jump drive eventually and therefore is able to buy and sell for your station in a larger radius. They also need to be paid according to their level. At the highest level I think it is something like 40 credits per mizura (game minute) flown. They take their pay directly out of your player account upon the completion of each trading trip. They do need additional extensions compared to best buy and station managed ships to work properly. The most important perhaps being the Trading System Extension. Without it, they will not level up. The Trading System Extension is not the same extension as Trade Command Mk1, Trade Command Mk2, and especially not Trade Command Mk3. They are 4 different pieces of software. You can get a Trading System Extension from Argon, Boron, and Teladi equipment docks. Costs somewhere around 9,000 credits. The full extent of the Commercial Agent is well summed up by the bonus package guide section concerning commercial agents. Look to the top of the forum for the bonus package sticky, or in your X3 Reunion start menu folder on your computer for the link to the guide that was also installed there when you installed the bonus package. Essentially, they are very good for stations where the places your station needs to buy/sell with are just too far away from your actual station's location to travel there normally without jumping.

4) Commodity Logistics. Commodity logistics isn't usually a way most people use to buy and sell from their stations to the A.I., but it can. Most people would use Commodity Logistics to take wares from one of their own factories to another of their own factories (factory loops), but if you really want, you could use it as a way of selling to very specific A.I. stations too. Commodity Logistics hires a pilot and that pilot, much like Commercial Agents will also train to use a jump drive to get around. They too need the Trading System Extension to train up. They also need to be paid like the commercial agents. The two versions of this software are Commodity Logistics Mk1 and Commodity Logistics Mk2. The former takes commodities from your factory(ies) and distributes a commodity from that station(s) to the places you designate. The latter version works much the same, but can go in ordered routes, picking up and delivering commodities to and from stations along it's route as specified by you. They are also covered much better than I can go into detail about in the sticky or X3 Reunion start menu guide.

All that said, you can mix and match any of those as you like. Like you can have a Commercial Agent restricted to selling silicon from your factory while a station managed ship is set to buy only energy cells for that same factory. It's just a matter of getting the settings for each put in. If you have that Commercial Agent and the station managed ship both buying energy for the same station, the Commercial Agent will of course beat it to the solar power plant in range with the best buying price. So they don't communicate between eachother and it's upto you to set them so they're non-redundant. However, a pair of Commercial Agents working for the same factory will coordinate with eachother in buying and selling.

If you have a Commercial Agent pilot in a ship and assign the ship to best buy/best sell, that pilot will not level up doing that. (I have no idea what happens when you take a Commercial Agent and have it start Commodity Logistics though. Never tried it personally.) They can however start leveling up again if you set them back to their original function. Otherwise, they're basically just along for the ride.

Whew. Best wishes. *passes out* :P

Terran Conflict Update.

I'm not going to update this guide for Terran Conflict, as the Manual that comes with the game seems to deal with it all very well (this time).

If anyone finds anything not well enough dealt with in the manual, let me know and I'll reconsider.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:03
by apricotslice
What have I missed ? I know most of the scripted factory and complex software is missing. Can someone provide these in the format as above so I can add them in ? I havent used many so didnt have immediate knowledge of the actual names and purposes to draw on.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:20
by frosty_dd
apricotslice wrote:What have I missed ?
Docking computer, boost extension, seta, cargobay life support, video goggles, ecliptic projector, different scanners comes to mind (but don't know for sure if you missed those or deliberately left them out?).

Btw good job :) an overview of all the software out there was needed imho.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:33
by JMCorp
trade command mk2 seems to be wrong for x3. i buy vanilla freighters with tcm1 only and dont install tcm2 and they can buy and sell.

you might mention that for special command software any ship m6 or bigger will not collect cargo containers in a sector, they will only collect rocks.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:34
by apricotslice
frosty_dd wrote:Docking computer, boost extension, seta, cargobay life support, video goggles, ecliptic projector, different scanners comes to mind (but don't know for sure if you missed those or deliberately left them out?).
Not doing the hardware, only the software.

Added docking, seta, ecliptic and mentioned strafe since it confuses some people that its fitted already.

good job

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:40
by drewlad
I like what you've done, it should be made sticky to cut down on repeated requests.

Re: good job

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:42
by apricotslice
drewlad wrote:I like what you've done, it should be made sticky to cut down on repeated requests.
The PM to do that has been sent. Should hopefully be on that list in a day or so.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:46
by GlorfindelX
Apricot: By the way, it might be helpful to mention that the docking computer and seta should be on ships you will personally fly. The AI doesn't really use these yet (unless a mod makes use of the DC like TelCat in x2 1.4)

JMCorp: Are you using the Cargo Delivery Service by klatuu (I think)? Installing that script changed the trade software for me like you mentioned.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:50
by apricotslice
GlorfindelX wrote:Apricot: By the way, it might be helpful to mention that the docking computer and seta should be on ships you will personally fly. The AI doesn't really use these yet (unless a mod makes use of the DC like TelCat in x2 1.4)
Have to think about that one. In doing it in character, I made it harder to say :)
JMCorp: Are you using the Cargo Delivery Service by klatuu (I think)? Installing that script changed the trade software for me like you mentioned.
I'm actually not using ships at all at the moemnt. My complexes sink or swim according to local traffic only.

Can you make up a line in keeping with above so I can just add it ?

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:51
by R.Bootneck
Correction is needed for ¨Fight Command Software MkI
MK I allows Auto Aiming (all 3 fire modes come with MKI only installed)
, MKII only adds the extra commands (missile defence etc and possibly the protect combsat commands etc)

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 15:54
by apricotslice
R.Bootneck wrote:Correction is needed for ¨Fight Command Software MkI
MK I allows Auto Aiming (all 3 fire modes come with MKI only installed)
, MKII only adds the extra commands (missile defence etc and possibly the protect combsat commands etc)
Err.... I'm not sure about that.

I got sent a save for the last mission to see the ending and that ship didnt have fight mk 2 installed, only 1, and didnt have auto-aim. I had to script in the 2 to get it.

Will ahve to check that i guess. Wont be tonight, as sleep is beckoning quickly now.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 16:00
by R.Bootneck
Must be something odd at my end then, on every version (1.2 on) of X3 i have never needed MKII fight command on any personal ship, for the auto aim, but then I don´t play plot enabled games or have any scripts, mods or conversions added either. The only time Ive ever bothered with MKII is if i wanted to use an M3 with a turret on the back.

Enjoy Your sleep, I´ll be starting a new fresh Humble merchant game in the next hour, and will still be here logged in when day breaks down under :)

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 16:28
by JMCorp
in the plot game in the last mission you're handed a ship with fight mk1 and that ship doesn't have auto aim. i have not tried a non plot game yet.

i am not using any mods at all. the save game i'm using is carried over from 1.3 to 1.4 but my freighters can all buy/sell with just the stock mk1 software.

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 17:20
by R.Bootneck
That could just very well be a Scripted omission of autoaim/targetting for that ship for that mission (at the end of the plot one presumes you should be reasonably accomplished as a fighter pilot). It would be better, surely, to ¨test¨ the functionality of software in a box standard ship purchasable from a shipyard, than a ship given to the player in a scripted fashion for plot missions. As some of the gifted ships for missions, or even start ships for certain start positions in the game are non standard variants ?.

I could just as easily be completley wrong, Old age and fuzzy grey cells, and confusion between the 4-5 different games i have running in parallellat anyonetime, could be getting the better of me :D


Just started a ¨Humble Explorer¨ Game, The stock Disco with NO Fight software only has the 2 std targetting options ¨-¨ & ¨x¨ , after installing Fight Command Mk I the 3rd targetting option ¨*¨ is available. I´ve allways understood this to mean the weapons would now auto aim when hud targeting Icon flashed blue. (If not then that may be why I´m such a bad shot ;))

Posted: Tue, 28. Mar 06, 21:42
by Paajtor
Great job, Aprico....just what a fresh explorer like me needs.
Thank you. :!: