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Example object

Docking means to attach your ship to another object in the game by using special provisions that have been made for that purpose. These provisions are called 'docking bay indicators' for the purpose of the actual attaching (docking), and 'docking bays' for the purpose of keeping your ship continuously attached (docked) to another object.

Docking is an essential part of the gameplay in Vega Strike. You need to dock at a base, a planet, a ship or another object to use the facilities it offers. Such facilities usually include ship dealers, trading provisions and mission computers. Refer to the Concourse for a description of these facilities.

This article is intended to explain how you can dock your ship at another object.

Standard Docking Protocol

The standard docking protocol requires you to:

Requesting Clearance

It is considered polite to request clearance from the object for permission to dock. Pressing ALT_EN.png O_EN.png, or D_EN.png in ver. 0.50, will transmit your request, and if accepted will activate the docking indicators. The docking bay indicators are there to help you approach a docking bay.

Docking Bay Indicators

Example object, with docking
bay indicators alight.

Once you have received docking clearance, a number of rectangles in red or in green color appear at the object that granted you the clearance. The rectangles indicate the exact location of the actual docking bays of the object so that you can see where you can dock.

The red docking bay indicators show docking bays that are more or less hidden or unreachable --- hidden usually by the object they are attached to, or unreachable for being located on its far side. Some bays may even be damaged and unusable. You can fly around the object until getting a straight view on a hidden docking bay. Provided that the bay is operational, its indicator will become green then.

You can dock at docking bays with partially-red indicators. The larger the green part of a docking bay indicator is, the easier it is to dock there because you will have more room to maneuver than you have with the mostly-red indicators. In other aspects than colors, the bays are all the same, so you can opt for your favourite bay as well as for any other.

This is a ship heading to a docking
bay, on a path close along
the example object.

To actually dock, select a green docking bay indicator and approach it. It is recommended you lower your speed sufficiently before getting too close to avoid a collision with the object. A collision may cause damage or even destroy your ship --- or the object, though that is rather unlikely. When docking at moving objects, such as ships, always stay alert for changes in their course.

Final Docking Sequence

To complete the docking sequence, when on your final approach, you must initiate docking by pressing D_EN.png. The automated docking systems will route your ship into the hangar of the object you are now docked at. From the hangar, you can further explore the object and make use of its facilities.

If the final docking sequence does not initiate, then you are probably not yet close enough to an operational docking bay. Continue your approach, and stubbornly press D_EN.png until you get docked. Still, do not get too close to an object to avoid a collision.


Uninhabited Locations

Destinations without a 'type' (Factory, Industrial, Oceanic etc) are considered uninhabited; while you may still land, these destinations have only limited base facilities to interact with. Therefore there is usually no benefit in landing at these locations.

Sudden Docking

Some pilots have gathered a reputation for attempting to dock without requesting clearance. Docking without clearance is not only considered to be impolite, it is also an endangering way of flying for the docking bay indicators cannot be activated early enough to allow for safe maneuvering. Collisions with other ships following the standard docking protocol are inherent to sudden docking.

Sudden docking is an annoyance for all the personnel in charge and other people getting involved, as it tends to mess with their schedules and can create costly --- sometimes even deadly --- delays for other pilots.

Bartenders are fond of telling stories that on some remote bases, sudden dockers, notoriously not heeding to the admonishments of station personnel, had been beheaded and put to drift about in orbit, as quiet reminders for those not adhering to this common docking practice.

Thus remember, pressing ALT_EN.png O_EN.png will send a request for clearance to your target, and send it in advance.

See also

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