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So I picked this up on the iPad after loving the DOS original. Really had to strain the grey matter to remember some of the basics, but cannot get past this one stumbling block:

How do I build a ship?

I have spare population, a shipyard, spare orbital slot and the ability to create small ship hulls (researched). I don't have the star lane drive yet but feel local ships should be possible.

I feel I have to design a ship first but every time I go to the Ships sub menu on the main game page it just has blank boxes and no help. What did I miss?

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You certainly need to design the ship first. Sadly, I have not played this game this century, so I cannot recall the interface that much. Apart from the haunting music. Have you tried looking here? b-sting.nl/ascendancy A manual. –  Ids Jul 25 '12 at 14:00
    
I wonder, you do not have the star lane drive, but do you do have any normal engines? I recalled you had to place different engines etc into slots. (I'm also straining to remember here ;) ) –  Ids Jul 25 '12 at 14:07
    
This video shows the normal way to build ships. youtube.com/… So, try to see which steps you are missing from there. –  Ids Jul 25 '12 at 14:11
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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Ah, you require the star drive, hulls and a basic engine before you can create a ship.

Accquiring all of these research levels presents me with a screen congratulating me on the fact I can now build star ships.

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gamefaqs.com/pc/575213-ascendancy/faqs/37448 gave some guidance but does not seem to match up with what I have experienced in the game on iOS. Possibly has changed since the DOS version. –  Tim Alexander Jul 25 '12 at 16:14
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