Instant action mode is going well. The game now reads XML files for ships, stations and soon asteroid bases. These aren’t used yet to generate ships, but soon will (that’s the easy part once the loading is complete). The “Battle Editor” can add ships and stations to the play area and clicking play pushes those objects into “game mode.”
A lot of polishing still left to do, error checking like making sure there’s at least one playable ship and making sure objects aren’t colliding with each other before beginning the battle. Setting factions, duplicating groups of objects (for quick and easy you versus them scenarios and for quickly adding ships). Saving and loading of previously created scenarios. Things like that
Already this is reminding me of when I was in grade school recess, I would play with little plastic toy soldiers and even pull up weeds and plant them into the sandbox battlefield to create trees and terrain.