Guide to Nomai Shuttle Piloting
There is no explanation (at least, that I've seen) anywhere in the Hearthian System on how to pilot a Nomai shuttle. Now, obviously you could just figure it out for yourself (there's only three controls, after all) but I figured I'd make a guide for anyone who wanted to make sure before they flung themselves out of a gravity cannon.
For anyone who's not already aware; there is no need to pilot a Nomai shuttle to complete the game, find any bits of story, or even get all the achievements (You can use your own ship for that one). However, it is possible to navigate anywhere in the system using these shuttles in place of your ship, and your feet and jetpack to get the rest of the way.
The Control Panel
This panel contains all of the controls for the Nomai shuttle. The only other controls are those on the ground that mirror the Left and Middle controls.
The next three sections explain the function of each control. There is no function to the bottom of the control panel- it's just a place to put the Control Sphere when you're not using any of the controls.
The Left Control (Launch)
The left control (and the middle control) is mirrored at the gravity cannon connected to the specific shuttle you're in.
This control activates the gravity cannon in question. It does not provide any thrust to the shuttle itself.
The Middle Control (Recall)
The middle control (and the left one) is mirrored at the gravity cannon the specific Nomai shuttle is bound to (On the ground, this is the right control. The right control in the shuttle does not exist on the ground).
This control returns the shuttle to the gravity cannon. Use this if your launch goes poorly. Be cautious against using it while the shuttle is moving quickly, or if the gravity cannon's launch pad is occupied (by, say, your own ship).
The Right Control (Align)
The right control is the most useful one on the shuttle. This will automatically align the shuttle with a nearby landmass, and activate the shuttle's pull ring lift thing.
In other words, this is how you land. Or at least land safely, so I imagine Feldspar wouldn't bother with it.
The Key (Timing)
Unlike your Hearthian ship, the Nomai shuttle has no built-in means of propulsion. Instead, to navigate to other planets, you'll need to check where the gravity cannon is pointing, and make sure to time your launch just right. Veterans of Kerbal Space Program may find this to be easier than those unfamiliar with it, however; if you screw up, you can always simply use the middle control to return to the launch pad for a second attempt.
When you're close to your target destination, you simply need to use the right control to align the shuttle to face away from the ground. It will then handle the landing process for you. Once you're done exploring the planet in question, you can return to the shuttle and use the recall control to travel to your next destination.
Be aware that no one has thought to stock the shuttles with fuel for your jetpack, so you may run out after too much shuttle exploration. The other Hearthian travellers have left a few canisters lying around, though.
As mentioned, the Left and Middle controls are mirrored on the ground.
The Ground Left control is mirrored to the shuttle Left control, and activates the Gravity Cannon.
The Ground Right control is mirrored to the shuttle Middle control, and recalls the shuttle.
Note: This much is already explained next to the Ground Controls but I thought I'd mention it anyway.