Space Nerds in Space (of which I'm the primary author) has a mission scripting system, as does Empty Epsilon and Artemis, and they're all different, but they all have similar goals. I have come up with a few missions for my game, but I'm finding it a bit difficult to come up with compelling scenarios. Maybe some of you have some ideas, but don't have time, inclination, or knowledge to make them come to life. If you have such ideas, I'd like to hear about them, maybe I can implement some of them. Also, if you have ideas about how to improve the scripting system, esp. ideas that might lead to building things that are "more than the sum of the parts", that would be interesting to hear about as well.
Some of the problems I seem to bump into while trying to think of scenarios:
1) Space doesn't have much in the way of terrain. It's mostly wide open, well, space. Makes it hard to hide things, and a bit too easy to explore, and every bit of space tends to look pretty much just like every other bit of space.
2) The different kinds of objects the game knows about tend to be too few in number, and too similar, too generic, and too "hard coded". In general, it'd be nice if each scenario introduces something new and different and interesting for the players to discover, but once they've seen all the different things the game knows how to present, well, it's hard to come up with something very different. Maybe the answer is to go all "dwarf fortress" on the problem and just brute force manually program in metric buttloads of variety.
3) There are limited ways of conveying complex information to the player. In the scenarios I've used so far, I've either used the comms station, transmitting text to the Comms officer, or "the computer", using text to speech to convey information to the players. I also haven't necessarily solved the problem of what to do if the players miss some important information (e.g. did not hear what the computer said... maybe need to implement some sort of "repeat" feature.) I think I need to thnk of some other ways of getting complex information to the players. Maybe a way to extract ship logs from derelicts, and some other things along those lines (like what?).
Anyway, I'd be interested to read anyone's thoughts on these topics, either ideas for particular missions, or ideas about how to improve the mission scripting systems in general.