For quite a time now, there have been ideas and concepts about a potential protein slot system floating around these forums. I personally always liked the idea it represented and decided that it finally needed it’s own place to call home on the forums where we can discuss the concept directly without sidetracking the discussions it arose from.
I believe the original concept was devised by Tjwhale(?) who mentioned a slot system where players would insert a protein from a selection into a set amount of slots inside their cell as an alternative to placing the proteins as physical parts. The only limitation to this system being that the slots are limited in quantity. There were not any concrete plans as to how players would increase the amount but some ideas included adding more nuclei to your cell, or simply having more slots as your cell gets bigger in size.
Here, I have devised my own concept of such a system, but rather than having a hard limit of slots, I have each type protein taking up a different amount of space in the cell’s “genome”.
This allows players to intelligently sort and place their proteins with a more fun and soft limit to the amount they can have, while still keeping with the theme of a slots system. The size of each protein can be variable, meaning that through an upgrades system players could potentially adjust the size at the cost or benefit of protein efficiency. That way if players wanted to have a really good cold resistance, they would need to sacrifice a lot of room they could have used for other proteins. Similar to previous concepts, I would like for the nucleus to increase your cell’s protein capacity.
These proteins will have a purely passive effect on your cell, rather than providing any active features. effects will probably include temperature resistances, toxic resistances, faster healing, etc. I would really like to have some more complex features if it’s possible and introduce things such as proteins that adjust your cell’s need for oxygen or other gasses, so long as there are real life counterparts. This system could potentially make a great home for more active compounds such as binding agents however, so I’m willing to discuss that matter.
Edit: After going over this post again I have noticed that it’s possible I may have created confusion as to the intention of this concept. I should mention that this concept was not originally devised to replace the prokaryotic protein parts, but to instead provide a method of adding passive effects and bonuses to a cell without physically making the cell larger in size. That is, it was intended to be a system alongside the placable parts.