Manual navigation is a system for piloting starships without the use of autopilot. To switch it on, simply type 'MANUAL' (which can be shortened to just 'MAN' for convenience) in the control room of your ship. To go back to automatic navigation, type 'AUTOPILOT', or just 'AUTO', in the control room.
How to use it:
When in manual navigation, you control each individual movement that your ship makes. This is useful for combat and other situations in which fine movements are needed. You can control the ship using the following commands:
7 8 9 ^ | 4 <- 5 -> 6 | v 1 2 3
You will note that these commands can be easily accessed by using the number pad at the far right of a standard keyboard. The arrows on this diagram show the directions in which each number will take you. The number 5 makes you remain completely stationary on the X and Y axis and is really only useful for the Z axis, which we will come back to in a moment.
4, 6, 8, and 2 take you in the cardinal compass directions (West, East, North and South respectively). In mathematical terms, 4 and 6 move you one coordinate more or less on the X axis (the first number in a string of coordinates) while 2 and 8 move your ship one coordinate more or less on the Y axis (the second number in the coordinates).
7, 9, 1 and 3 take you in the diagonal compass directions (northwest, northeast, southwest, southeast). 7 moves you one coordinate less in both the X and Y axes. 3 is the opposite, moving you one coordinate more in both the X and Y axes. 9 moves you one coordinate more in the X axis and less in the Y axis. 1 moves you one coordinate less in the X axis and one coordinate more in the Y axis.
If you are at coordinates 5, 4, 1 and there is a planet at 5, 6, 1, that planet is two coordinates to the south. (two coordinates more on the Y Axis)
If you wished to move next to that planet, you could move using keys 1, 2, or 3, and would then be adjacent to it.
The Z-axis is basically 'upwards and downwards'. To travel on the Z-axis, type '+' or '-', which will move you upwards or downwards respectively, and it will prompt you to select another number. This is where the '5' direction comes in handy, since inputting 5 here makes you move straight upwards/downwards. If you select another number, you will move upwards or downwards, AND in that direction.
The higher the number of the third coordinate, the lower that coordinate is on the Z-Axis. For example, 1, 1, 1 would mean that not only are you in the top left corner of the starmap, you are also as high as you can go on the Z-axis without moving to the sector above you. At 1, 1, 20 you would be on the edge of the sector below you.
To travel to another sector at sublight speed (as opposed to using your FTL drive) you need to reach the edge of the starmap (any edge will do, but you must be at the edge in the direction you wish to travel in) and then move one coordinate in the direction of the edge. You will then be asked if you wish to exit the sector in this fashion.
Related Topics: Autopilot | Ship Commands | Alternative Manual Navigation