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A Unique Starflight-y Game

Discussion in 'Works In Progress' started by CarterG81, Feb 11, 2014.

  1. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Latest Update: DEVELOPMENT PAUSED TO INSURE HIGHEST QUALITY. WILL RESUME IMMEDIATELY AFTER CURRENT PROJECT IS RELEASED.

    Current Work in Progress: First Playable of Most Unique Feature (Prototype Stage)


    $ToolTips.png

    microorganism.png

    Cargobay2.png

    BridgeModeImproved2.png

    400x Professions.png



    For reference, if you must relate this game to another, it would be a combination of Sim games, exploration games like Starflight, procedural generation which extends past random maps or dungeons and into history and culture like Dwarf Fortress, Point & Click Adventures with an emphasis on story, puzzle, and decisions, and individual character management like The Sims. While I borrow absolutely no parts from these games, there is some similarity to Starflight due to it being a pixel game / space sandbox, and there is a heavy emphasis on the Sim or God-game genre when managing and dealing with your crew and their problems, and some inspiration from point & click genre because of the branching dialogue system and emphasis on story.

    You are the Captain of your customized Ship. Choosing where your strengths lie, the player must maintain systems, manage their crew, and balance resources to survive the harsh and lonely trek through space.

    What is your choice of Science? Biology? Medicine? Psychology? A general state of happiness?
    Will you be a Science Vessel? A War Ship? A Miner or Merchant? A party bus? Perhaps you will want to create a vessel similar to your favorite Sci-Fi television show, or fill a ship with crew members created after you and your friends. The decision is yours in this open world sandbox full of mystery and the undiscovered.

    Each ship has 9 different professions, each with their own strengths and purposes. The player assigns crew as officers, and enlists a number of crew members based on their priority in that area of expertise. Traditional gameplay consists of being the captain of a large vessel, with many crew members and loads of responsibility. After all, your crew will live or die by your command.

    Once your ship and crew are ready, you embark on a long journey to explore the procedurally generated galaxy and discover the unknown.


    In this procedural galaxy, are procedurally generated Species with procedural cultures and history. All alien species are playable as well, with the ability to have a multi-cultural crew. Be warned though...the more cultures you throw in the mix, the more likely the conflict among crewmembers and the harder it will be to manage them.
    So far there are nearly 30 species in the game, with more incoming. Most of that which I show you is animated as well.



    Will you be the first to encounter Life in the universe? Will your trek result in finding a Utopia planet where your crew abandon your mission to live in bliss? That alien species, are they friendly, or a threat to your entire Species? You will be sure to find out, unless you fail to maintain your crew and have them succumb to a virus, mutiny, or....SPACE MADNESS...madness...madness.....madness...
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2017
  2. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I had decided a bit ago to make this a work in progress journal, discussing various things.
    It seemed as though no one viewed or posted, so I thought interest was low, hence why I stopped updating with progress posts.
    Since this thread is finally attracting people, and lurkers revealing themselves as interesting, I will try to keep this updated.



    The OP post above will have a general idea of the game's progress, major features implemented, and major features planned.

    I figured this would be best for those who are interested in the game, but come in late to the thread.

    I may also simply reveal this game in another thread, perhaps with a proper company account, with its proper title, (perhaps) social media or blog links to follow a developer journal, a more accurate synopsis of the game, more accurate screenshots, a working feature list, and most of all the proper website.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2014
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  3. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Original Post

    EDIT UPDATE: As expected in early game prototyping, the design has changed quite a bit from this original post. While it remains the same at its core, there is absolutely no "FTL" in it, the same amount of "SIMS", a touch more "Dwarf Fortress", and a hell of a lot more "Starflight".
    You can see the changes later in this thread: HERE
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2014
  4. SiegfriedCroes

    SiegfriedCroes

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    Yay, another pixel art game (also working on one, see my signature) :D Already saw the characters in a topic about recoloring sprites at runtime ;) Looks fun! Looking forward to see it in action :)
     
  5. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    The first stage of procedural generation is completed.

    I stayed up all night and day working on this. I never tested it a single time, relying on "keeping it in my head" and just using logic.
    I am a bit proud of this accomplishment, as I both created quite a complex universe without a single mistake on my part!

    Although the percentages and variables are very rough, this is what happens.

    Based on the name of the galaxy (a string), the random generator is seeded.
    The galaxy then creates a ton of space. In the future, these spaces will include more than just planetary systems and star systems, but interstellar mediums, star clusters, etc.

    What is created are not the number of the planets or stars the galaxy has. This would be in the billions. Instead, around 1000 points of interests are formed, such as a planetary system. It is assumed that there are billions of planets in the galaxy, but the generated planetary systems are of interest to the player and their scanners.

    Represented below, are Star Systems (red squares) and their stars (light blue), random background stars (blue) or emptiness (black), and Planetary Systems of interest (Green squares) and their planets (white dots).

    The systems have their planets/stars positioned according to they relative position to the center of the system. Green squares will always be a Star (Sun). What is interesting is that when the player visits the planetary systems, the position of the planets relative to its central star will remain the same from the StarMap below.

    A player will also be able to count the number of planets in a system, simply by observation.

    Please ignore the fact that star systems have a significant amount of stars around them, creating little squares. A much more accurate representation of the final generated galaxy will be the planetary systems and their planets (white dots).

    Also important to note, is that every single star and planet has its own data. Each tiny white dot, will not only be visitable, but the player will be able to go into the system, orbit the planet, scout the planet, and even walk on it (if the atmosphere and gravity allows it).

    PROCEDURALLY GENERATED GALAXY MAP Texture2D
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 13, 2014
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  6. e5an

    e5an

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    No red-shirt crew members? ;)
     
  7. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I figured I should either capitalize on what people are familiar with (Blue, Red, and Yellow shirts) or make it my own by avoiding those tropes.

    Thus enter, the Pink Shirts!





    *Update: Procedural Generation is now fully working! :)

    Based on the name of the Galaxy (a string) the galaxy is created. In this way, it is easy for the player to pick a galaxy just by typing anything they want. Even better, players can share the same galaxy with other people by using key words.

    The blue stars, are planetary systems. The white dots surrounding them are planets. So you can see how many planets are in a planetary system by counting the white dots. Orange big stars are star systems. There are more things planned (interstellar mediums, empty expanse, star clusters, etc.) but this is what is important right now.

    Every single tiny white dot (planet) has its own detail, such as minerals on it, whether or not life exists on the planet, etc.

    Click to see the full resolution, so you can accurately see all of the stars and planets.

    This is a screenshot of a part of the galaxy "MilkyWay"
    $HelloWorld.png
     
  8. TheRaider

    TheRaider

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    this looks great. You shouldn't make this a trekky game and instead should make it unique. Has to much potential.
     
  9. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Thanks.

    This will end up being no more a trekky game than Starflight, Firefly, or FTL was.
    I mean, it will have space travel, alien encounters, and crew relationships. Laser guns, etc.
    Typical Sci-Fi stuff.

    It is definitely my own lore though. Here are some alien species.

    $SlugMove.gif
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2014
  10. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I have a preference for non-humanoid aliens, as well as a more mystical side to sci-fi, such as zombie inhabited planets or encountering ghost ships.

    $aliens.png
     
  11. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I've finally returned to work.

    I've done a total revamp of the game.


    [Update Notes]

    Started a new project and bringing the game over to become more organized. Put the folder on Dropbox so I can have a Backup Version Control. The project is beginning to reach the point of "I dont want to have to do all that again."

    Polished the procedural generation and corrected a few inefficiencies and flaws. All of the procedural generation is contained in its own C# scripts (no monobehaviour) and thus would work with any C# project. This generates all the data and stores it in one object (the Galaxy or 'SpaceExpanse').

    I then use Prefabs Scripts to use that data to render and interface with everything.
    This was the 'total rework' because now everything is supported through a more Component-Based design as well as a Unity-favored style keeping to the "GameObject-Component" relationship model.

    $yay2.png


    While I was at it, I polished the procedural generation to make it easier to add new components to it. One in particular, is the "Home World". The HomeWorld is always generated in the center of the galaxy, and is always the starting point of the player. It contains its own class, because most likely it will feature special options that other planets do not have.

    This is the only part so far that is NOT random: The Planet the System's Location. Everything else, including the HomeWorld's system details, is random. But the single planet inside of the homeworld system (the homeworld planet) will always have Life and an Earth-like planet surface, among other features.
    So this means there will ALWAYS be a single planetary system in the center of the galaxy, in addition to anything else generated around it in that same area. In that system, will be one predetermined planet.


    $HomeWorld.png


    $homeworldtiny.png
     
  12. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    It wasn't as easy as I had hoped, but it's good enough since I did not have as much time to work today than yesterday.

    However, IT IS DONE!

    ToolTips for every System in the Starmap.

    When hovering over them, it has a nice fade along with the appearance/disappearance of the tooltips thanks to "Simple Tooltips". I figured the $2 was well worth easy, good looking tooltips which I could edit in the editor. Worked out great.

    In the screenshot are 3 tooltips to show the various systems and how the information is all there.
    Although in the game, the player can only see one tooltip at a time, as they appear/disappear based on if the mouse is hovering over the System.

    Tomorrow, I will try to finish the StarMap scene entirely. I just need to add the PlayerMarker, add a GUI when the System is clicked (and disable the hover GUI when clicked), add the "Travel" button and "Scan" button, and finalize it all with pathfinding movement with the PlayerMarker to the System when "Travel" is clicked. Since all that is pretty simple, I might be able to add a Vectrosity line when the player marker starts to move, so the Player knows the path they are taking, as they should in a spaceship navigating its way through the universe.

    Plop on some GUI buttons to change to a different Scene or a "Enter System" GUI which pops up as a button when arriving at the system exactly, and *poof* I be done!

    I imagine that will take a day. So the next day afterwards will be the start of a new Scene, and new work (unfortunately, bleh!), trying to figure out how to create, render, and display each Solar System based on game data.

    $ToolTips.png
     
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  13. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Players can now enter the systems!

    $SystemMap.png
     
  14. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Created planet (and sun) art, and implemented the planet system map.

    Each planet is first determined to be a Gas Giant or a Terrestrial planet.

    Then, based on the heat level of the sun and the planet's distance from the sun, it is either Hot, Cold, or Temperate.

    Hot gas giants look like Jupiter, cold gas giants look like Uranus. There is no temperate for gas giants. Not yet anyway.
    Cold terrestrials are ice planets, Hot terrestrials are lava planets. Temperate terrestrial planets can be a lot of different things, but for now are either Earth-like or Ocean Planets. Alternatively, there are Moons too, or Moon-like planets which could be anything. Moons are part of the Planet class, so they may be discoverable planets, and I have given thought to making Gas Giants useful (as opposed to in Starflight, where they are entirely useless).

    While only temperate planets are habitable for life, that does not mean that later there will not form life in uninhabitable environments.

    Currently no habitable desert planets, no habitable tundra planets, and no planetary rings (yet).
    I am also thinking of making every Species have its own type of planet (desert, tundra, ice, lava, ocean, earth, etc.) and planet environment (temperature, weather, etc.)
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2014
  15. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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  16. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    The world is completed!

    Besides maybe future balancing and additional GUI changes, I am 100% done with the world building (for now).

    Next, I just have to add


    1) Gameplay
    2) User Interface
    3) Gameplay Content


    I actually am pretty sure I'm completely done with the art too. The exception may be to add more graphical variants for the same things. But really both graphically and in terms of world generation, rendering, player movement, design, and basic GUI, that part is 100% finished.

    I'm thinking probably 1 month to dev the rest of the game, so it'll probably be 2-3 months, lol.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2014
  17. tweedie

    tweedie

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    Great job so far! :) I'm not sure why this thread hasn't been getting more attention, perhaps it's from boring 'TL DR' people ;) But I thought it was interesting to look over your thoughts

    Nice job with all the procedural stuff, looks like a complex system that's for sure. But pink shirts, aren't they a bit similar to the purple shirts? ;) Just kidding, my only possible crit would be that black isn't a particularly obvious colour for a captain, given that his crew are wearing the rainbow - might be hard to spot him (unless he stays centred on the screen, then by all means have him black!)

    Anyways, keep up the good work! I shall be following :)
     
  18. exiguous

    exiguous

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    I agree.

    I'm following this for a while. I'm not a fan of pixel art and the word "treky" (refering to Star Trek?) "disturbs" me. However, Starflight is also my most memorable game and my biggest inspiration. So i'm interested where this project leads to.

    I disagree. Black makes the most important person/player easiest to spot. I just find the difference between Engineer and Engineer crew too small (same for Science + Tactical). Instead of a brighter shirt color maybe consider some cap/hat or a sash.

    Would be nice to see some screenshots.

    The 3 things you have listed to add next are the most important ones. For now you just have "extended" the engine to create your game world. In my opinion thats the least part. Making the real game ontop is the hard work. You may need combat, missions, bases, economy, dialogues, story, equipment etc.. I don't want to discourage you just be realistic as not reaching your own "deadline" is a danger for the project.

    Anyway, interesting project and good work so far.
     
  19. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    My original idea was that the Officer Crew were nearly identical, save for the Officer giving advice, and it being important to know which one the officer is. So I did not want there to be much of a difference, because in game they are basically the same thing (Officer or Crew). However, this is a good idea. I have given some thought to various ideas. Such as having Half colors, similar to the Entertainer but with only two colors, one obvious one to signify Officer, another for lower ranked (Crew), with the other color being the profession. Alternatively, significant color differences, more obvious dark/light contrast, or the elimination of the crew entirely (or all crew, no matter profession, being a faceless white shirt rookie). Thank you for the idea of a hat/cap, I had not thought of that.


    I stopped uploading them because the game is beginning to progress quite significantly, and with such little attention (posts) I didn't think anyone cared anymore. I will upload a few screenshots though, now that I know people are still interested.



    Yea, which is quite unfortunate, hehe.
    I estimated gameplay/content to be 1 month (2-3 months more likely) because it only took me a few days to create what I have so far.
    I created the entire procedural generation in a single day (Idk how long it was, but it was something like 8-12 hours straight of "in the zone" coding without much commenting.)

    Creating, properly rendering, and all that good stuff for the SystemMap took me 8 hours total over a few days, and a few hours drawing/polishing the planet graphics. The starmap took about the same time.

    So all in all, to do the "least part" took me at minimum 3 work days (3x8 hours) for the two different maps, graphics, and procedural generation. Then probably 2-3 days (2-3 x8 hours) for everything else. This all includes learning to get to know Unity, component based design, and all that stuff. It also doesn't include the time I spent learning that stuff, but does include googling how to do some things and browsing the documentation.

    I give myself about a week to implement the gameplay, but several months for adding content, testing, and balancing. After all, making a prototype is easy. Making the actual game is hard. I imagine that balancing the game will be a b*****.

    Yea, that is why I took my estimate (1 month more, which is x4 the time of what Ive already done) and multiplied it by 2x-3x. It could easily take 6 months from now before the game is even ready to consider being released.

    I am not on a deadline, create this in my own time (with my own budget), and will not stop until it's done. I already took my bi-yearly 1-month vacation. For the last 5 years I've been pretty much learning game dev, programming, and 3D/2D art nonstop, day in day out, with only a few month-long sabbaticals. This project will definitely be finished...eventually... So not meeting my idealistic deadline is just a personal disappointment (and a learning experience) but certainly not a threat to the project!
     
  20. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I answered some of your comment in my reply to exiguous. My apologies for making your reply brief :p

    I figured with so little response initially, people didn't care too much. Instead, I wanted for this to be a kind of progress journal for anyone interested in a newbie going into game development with his first real game. I actually figured no one was even reading this, lol.

    I also type 150wpm, so it's super easy for my to accidentally create massive walls of text or bore people with unimportant details.
     
  21. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Thank you both (and anyone else browsing this thread) for giving this thread attention.
    Thank you for the kind words, tips, and great advice. I appreciate all of it and have taken it into consideration, most definitely.

    I stopped posting screenshots primarily because I do not want to give too much away, and the game is really making some serious progress. It may have been a small accomplishment to finish the procedural world rendering and the core of the game's interface being completed (rendered graphics, correctly positions ,realistic universe/planet generation, etc.)

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    THE SYSTEM MAP
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Once the player enters into a System, the planets are placed as they appear (as white dots) in the Star Map.
    An example is in this thread in an earlier post.

    Today, I redrew some of the planets to look better, so I want to postpone the System Map screenshot until I finish adding them into the game and making sure they still position correctly.



    At the center of every System, is the System's Star, or 'Sun'.
    The Stars range in Intensity (Heat Level) based on real life classifications. They are also colored based on real life information I research.

    $SunColor HeatLevel Range.png


    I am quite happy with how they turned out, especially given how I used only text information to create the colors, only to find out AFTER I created them, that they almost perfectly match this image of stars classified by intensity (which determines color): Thanks wikipedia!

    $Star_types_T_through_O.png

    Of course, the above image ^ seem to have Type A and Type B flipped around.


    As you can see from this debugging, the planet's position and the star's heat level both determine the planet's Temperature (Hot, Cold, Temperate). The hotter a star, the further out Earth-like planets get, and the more hot planets exist. Same for cold, but reverse.

    $SystemHeatDifference.png
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2014
  22. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Oh a different note, the game has transformed quite a bit compared to what it was initially designed to be.

    Right now, the game is extremely similar to a modern day Starflight.

    W̶h̶i̶l̶e̶ ̶I̶ ̶w̶i̶l̶l̶ ̶s̶t̶i̶l̶l̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶p̶r̶e̶s̶e̶r̶v̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶l̶i̶t̶t̶l̶e̶ ̶s̶p̶r̶i̶t̶e̶ ̶p̶e̶o̶p̶l̶e̶,̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶y̶ ̶w̶i̶l̶l̶ ̶n̶o̶t̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶a̶n̶i̶m̶a̶t̶e̶d̶ ̶o̶r̶ ̶w̶a̶l̶k̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶a̶r̶o̶u̶n̶d̶.̶ ̶I̶n̶s̶t̶e̶a̶d̶,̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶g̶a̶m̶e̶ ̶w̶i̶l̶l̶ ̶h̶a̶v̶e̶ ̶m̶i̶n̶i̶m̶a̶l̶ ̶g̶r̶a̶p̶h̶i̶c̶a̶l̶ ̶r̶e̶p̶r̶e̶s̶e̶n̶t̶a̶t̶i̶o̶n̶ ̶i̶n̶ ̶p̶l̶a̶c̶e̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶m̶o̶s̶t̶l̶y̶ ̶a̶ ̶t̶e̶x̶t̶ ̶b̶a̶s̶e̶d̶ ̶e̶x̶p̶e̶r̶i̶e̶n̶c̶e̶.̶ ̶(. (Mind you, I consider Starflight to be a mostly text based experience, as all alien encounters except combat are text based).

    (Think Starflight, but instead of detailed face portraits, it will be pixel art full body, as shown in the OP of a character).
    N̶o̶ ̶s̶h̶i̶p̶ ̶w̶i̶l̶l̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶r̶e̶n̶d̶e̶r̶e̶d̶,̶ ̶b̶e̶s̶i̶d̶e̶s̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶s̶y̶m̶b̶o̶l̶ ̶r̶e̶p̶r̶e̶s̶e̶n̶t̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶p̶l̶a̶y̶e̶r̶'̶s̶ ̶s̶h̶i̶p̶ ̶o̶n̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶S̶t̶a̶r̶M̶a̶p̶.̶



    "What does it have that Starflight had?"
    Traveling in the galaxy will be very similar, with (I assume) a very similar feel. Starflight had a StarMap SystemMap, as does mine. The player will travel around in a similar fashion, consuming fuel and balancing their ship with upgrades and training their crew, after enlisting them and assigning positions. Artifacts play a part, as well as encounters with aliens and diplomacy. There will be mining, most certainly, and most likely a graphical representation for landing and moving around a Planet. This means the design to have an ATV or ATV-like Shuttle still remains.

    "What does it have that Starflight did NOT have?"
    This also means that most likely the design to have crew (your "party") walk around , similar to a slower ATV, also remains. This means encounters outside of the Ship, and a heavy focus on encounters on different Planets. Especially habitable Planets with LIFE.

    There is a strong SIM/God-Game aspect to the game. This means managing your ship and crew, assigning crew tasks, balancing the crew's sanity happiness (among other things), and upgrading/handling your ship systems. The crew will interface with you, such as making suggestions on what they may want/need. Starflight had next to no focus on the crew, and the crew themselves were almost useless. This game revolves AROUND the crew more-so than it does the ship.

    Drones, Automated Systems, a lot more alien species, and more detail in gameplay, as well less of a focus on a story and more of a focus on stories formed through random encounters and procedural gameplay. Procedurally generated "episodes", which are more like an episode of a tv show (brief, with focus on one major encounter/event) rather than an entire book planned out (with a lengthy, detailed story, set on a rail with only one option forward).



    In the end, the OP still holds up.

    Originally I said,

    Now it is much MUCH closer to




    TLDR: Less Treky, More StarFlighty
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2014
  23. MickM

    MickM

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    Just adding support - One thread I keep an eye on.
    It is a good one for stimulating the brain about other possibilities.

    Regardless of posting or otherwise - as long as I check the forums I will be checking in on this one!
     
  24. tweedie

    tweedie

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    This is fantastic.


    @exiguous About the sashes/caps, I think that's a great idea - it would make it very obvious who's an officer, but it would keep everybody of one class in a 'uniform' (pardon the pun) style. About black being the most obvious - maybe for you, but I guess that differs a lot between people, but more importantly - it probably depends more on the background colour, because if it's a grey ship floor, then I wouldn't notice black so much.

    And don't worry about your reply to me being brief - answering my questions in reply to another comment still answers them, so 'tis good!

    Looking at the star classifications reminds me of my time in Astronomy (I opted in for doing triple science + astronomy because I love space :D ), and about main sequence stars, their life cycle etc etc.
    If you want to get really detailed with your star colours/stats, then looking into Hertzsprung–Russell diagrams is the way to go (although it's very probable you've already done this). I can imagine mapping a similar diagram in code as axes and picking a random coordinate, thus generating a random star. Though I'm no programmer, and I imagine you have a more elegant solution to this :)

    Will we encounter supergiants and white dwarfs, and notice a size difference? (And also - any black holes / chances of supernova? [Hypernova!?] sorry, inner geek kicking in). You could also do Messier object-style stars/celestial bodies (star clusters and nebulae but excluding galaxies of course) where it isn't immediately apparent what the object is until you visit it. If your research has included messier objects then you'll know some of them are now among the most studied things in the universe (not what I'm trying to get at haha!), but having something similar in the game that hasn't yet been identified, and so you must visit it to find out, could be quite interesting. I know you're having points of interest, and a mechanic that you must visit a planet to properly understand it, but having these totally unknown objects might help to encourage exploration to remote or dangerous parts of the galaxy. Sorry if that paragraph read like garbage, I just splurged it onto my keyboard.

    And whilst I can't write at 150wpm (good job btw ;) ) I know the feeling of writing on and on, I have to really contain myself not to do it, but it often ends up as a block of waffle, as evidenced above.


    Keep up the good work! And screenshots are definitely most welcome, but we won't pressure you into posting them every 5 minutes! :)
    As MickM has said, this post is interesting for looking at your developmental thought process.
     
  25. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    What a great idea. I had planned on having star clusters and nebulae, but I totally forgot about them. I guess the world isn't finished yet, lol.

    Im so glad you reminded me. I was looking for a way to hide some information, and your suggestions are great.
    I guess I forgot bc I was so excited to be 'finished' with that part of the game. I will revisit and more after I flesh out the gameplay.
     
  26. tweedie

    tweedie

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    No problem, just seemed fitting to encourage exploration to go where no man has gone before! Less treky, I know!
     
  27. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    The professions have changed a bit, as well as the colors.

    The Chef was combined with the Entertainer. Then I was messing with the chef's costume, and ended up coming up with a kindof future-looking suit/hat combo. Weird enough to be future-y or SciFi-y.

    Adjusted the colors to give a greater difference between dark (officer) and light (crew). For now, this is good enough. I may go back and see if I can add minor items to each of the crew, similar to what I did with Doctor or Entertainer. Maybe a belt for engineer crew, or a hard hat or something similar.

    I thought of combining the Psychologist Communicator, due to game design (The Communicator had originally only translated languages, which I could simply allow the Psychologist to do. Everything else, the Psychologist already did. Or vice versa, where I could make the Communicator be a psychologist, since on a Starship, even more so than in earth life, communication in relationships is very important). However, I came up with a great idea for the Communicator, fulfilling a vital role in space exploration. There is also a tremendous amount of professional focus on Psychology being one of the most important sciences. There is no longer a social stigma in this future society, so seeing a Counselor is mandatory for all personnel. Coincidentally, this is part of managing a crew's Sanity.


    $NewProfessions.png


    Every Profession has 3 functions.

    First, a function dealing with the Ship and long term management. Such as managing the crew's safety, health, sanity, over the long and hard life of space travel away from home.

    Second, a function dealing with away missions or exploration, when the player leaves the ship to explore a planet or alien location.

    Third, a function dealing directly with aliens. Such as analyzing Alien biology to find a weakness, analyzing the alien's language or threat level.



    Finally, the Captain is no longer a crewmember. At least for now, anyway. Instead, the Player is the captain. However, I still wanted a "captain" crewmember. Introducing: The First Officer. He plays the role in assisting the player (Captain). The Captain is not visible, and handles all major decisions. The First Officer is the one responsible for leading the ship and handling less important duties. This is similar to how Picard made Riker do everything, while he sat back and made the major decisions. This is very realistic in leadership, as often it is very important for the primary leader to not be bogged down or stressed with unimportant decisions or tasks.

    I have taken a lot of thought into what would be realistic professions in a Starship, with lengthy space voyages. Remember, the Entertainer is more than just a Chef or virtual reality programmer. Entertainers can be high class prostitutes as well. You have to remember that a starship crew is away from earth, and people (besides their crew) for sometimes years. It is not crazy for a super-progressive society to put high value on and make official, professions that may seem strange for us in 2014.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2014
  28. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I purchased "Dialogue System for Unity" to handle all of my dialogue. This is a significant amount of the gameplay, so it should be interesting to see how easy this plugin makes it to implement what I need.

    I will try to keep up to date with how it works out for me, in case anyone else is interested in the plugin, or the game's gameplay in terms of dialogue, crew opinion, and player interaction in decision making.


    Interesting enough, although I purchased it for the dialogue system, the quest system (and possibly even the save system) is just as interesting. If I am lucky, this will turn into a 3-in-1 product for dirt cheap. Let's just hope so!

    So far, I am loving working with Unity, especially when a simple asset store purchase can allow me to avoid otherwise boring work, allowing me to focus on the fun parts more often.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2014
  29. TimB

    TimB

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    Hey CarterG81, sent you a PM with some questions, only pointing it out here because I usually miss them.
     
  30. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Implemented a general idea for how the GUI will work for "Manage Mode", and finished most of the design on it.

    The Captain (Player) will designate crew to various Sub-Systems (3 systems, each with a type of function) in each of the 8 Systems (Engineering, Science, Security, Psychology, Medical, Entertainment, Navigations, Communications).

    The Player designates their strengths at the beginning of the game by enlisting crewmembers, drones, or automation for each System, based on the size of their ship. The player chooses at the beginning of the game the number of crewmembers, the ship size, and the power of sub-systems via upgrades. Similar to Starflight, where you did the same using your starting money. The player can return to their homeworld for further crew or upgrades.



    In this way, the Player decides what type of vessel they want to have by strengthening their SYSTEMS through Sub-System upgrades Number of / Skill of Crewmembers.

    Want to be a War Ship? You will want to hire a significant number of highly skilled security crew and powerful weapon and arsenal sub-system upgrades. Then pick what other things you want to do in battle (Navigators for pilot maneuvers or stealth subsystem upgrades, better engines for a fast ship or shields upgrades but not necessarily engineers, etc.)

    Want to be a Exploration vessel? Strong Navigations Science Systems are a good idea.




    With the help of your officers and initial setup of crew:subsystems, you can micromanage as little or as much as you want to.
    For most, you will not have to micro-manage and instead focus primarily on what is important to you at the moment. For example, a Captain who pushes their Engineering crew, "Get those Engines working again ASAP!"
     
  31. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Finished creating the GUI (art) and the majority of the GUI for "Manage Mode".

    All I have to do now is add the final data that goes into the management, which is just an icon of a crewmember with a string that says "x1" , "x5" etc. based on the number of crew assigned to that SubSystem. That, and two buttons ( - ) and ( + ) to assign crew to a Subsystem.

    Then maybe an error message that appears in the center of the screen when the remaining crew to assign is at 0. "You cannot assign anymore crew!"

    $newGUIList.png



    I have to admit that at first, the GUI system was unintuitive and annoying. I had a very difficult time understanding how to create a GUI of menus and submenus. Buttons within Buttons within Buttons.

    However, I eventually figured it out through a series of Switch's and Bools.
    Once it clicked, that lightbulb moment, from then on out it became very easy to make any GUI.

    It is UNACCEPTABLE!!!!!!!!!!! that the tutorials and documentation I browsed through with the GUI system (and even some related to NGUI and the like) failed to teach properly how to nest buttons and create a real interface that goes beyond prototype-simple. I had to dig into Unity forums and Unity Answers, seeing repeatedly "Bool. Use a Bool." (which I was doing, but not for EVERYTHING) and then had to figure out on my own that not only should you control your GUI with bools (literally ALL things) but also never declare a new Rectangle when creating a GUI object (like a BUTTON). ALWAYS use a declared Rectangle so you can save it.

    The switches are not for the GUI, but for the data (purely strings, except the INT used in proceeding Switches).

    The actual GUI is created with a single button or series of buttons, three different times.

    So in code, there are only 3 dynamic buttons, and 2 static buttons ("Maintain" and "Upgrade" in the screenshot) while ALL OTHER BUTTONS are created from those 3 lines of code.

    Things I learned:




    1) ALWAYS declare a RECT outside of OnGUI(), and NEVER declare a new RECT when creating a GUI object. Also, do not change that rectangle after it is set. Instead, use a temporary variable (declared in void OnGUI()) and change that variable.
    For example,

    Code (csharp):
    1.  //ALWAYS
    2. RECT buttonRECT1;
    3. RECT buttonRECT2;
    4.  
    5. void OnGUI()
    6. {
    7.    Rect changingRECT = new Rect(0,0,100,100);
    8.    buttonRECT1 = changingRECT ;
    9.    GUI.Button(buttonRECT1, string);
    10.  
    11.     changingRECT .x += changingRECT .width; //This moves the rectangle to the right, adjacent to the previous. [__] [__]
    12.     buttonRECT2 = changingRECT ;
    13.     GUI.Button(buttonRECT2, string);
    14. }
    15.  
    Code (csharp):
    1.  //NEVER
    2.    GUI.Button(new Rect(0,0,0,0), string);
    3.  
    Reason: To allow you to place future buttons based on this button's transform. Buttons toggled with bools do not work well with nested buttons (If(Button) inside another (If(Button).

    Example of Usefulness: Let's say I want to place an image inside of that first GUI button. If I only ever used changingRECT or I used (new Rect(0,0,100,100) then I'd have to go back up and declare a RECT, copy/paste some code, and just waste time.

    Instead, I simply type

    Image.position = buttonRECT1 ; //something like that, anyways
    Image.position += 10; //This moves it more inside the rectangle. Wallah! Done!






    2) Always use bools to toggle GUI objects, especially if they compose a set of objects (example, a set of buttons): [___][___][___][___][___]

    Code (csharp):
    1.  //ALWAYS
    2. bool primaryMenu_ON = false;
    3.  
    4. void OnGUI()
    5. {
    6.      if(primaryMenu_ON)
    7.      {
    8.          GUI.Button(rectangle, string);
    9.          //other stuff
    10.      }
    11. }
    12.  
    Reason: Even if you don't ever need to toggle it off, allowing yourself the option is useful in case you do need to in the future. This is just a vital way to code GUI in any game. It should ALWAYS have a toggle bool, even if that bool is set to true when declared and never again changed, at least it's there and the code is contained.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2014
  32. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I'd also like to note that I plan to Color-Code everything in the game, based on Professions.

    This means that players wont even have to read a lot of the time to comprehend information. They can literally just know "Orange means Engineering." and thus know that is an Engineer, or Engineering is doing this, that upgrade is for the Engines.
    "Oh no! No more pink! I am basically out of combat!!"
    "Is that Notice Green? Must be my Science Officer."
    etc. etc.

    Dialogue Choices in a certain color, indicate using that System to accomplish a special dialogue choice.


    Although I assume it will be overwhelming at first managing 8 different professions, players will quickly learn what each color means, keeping things as simple as possible in a game where you manage tons of crewmembers.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2014
  33. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I've taken a bit of a vacation (unfortunately) from the project, but I'm back now. It seems as though after every major milestone, I take a week off to relax. Game development is a lot of work, so it makes sense. Really helps to prevent burnout, even though it slows down development quite a bit.

    Also, I've just been designing for awhile. Fleshing out the gameplay requires a lot of thinking and design. Tightening the idea into something that is actually playable is not a simple task. So I cannot say it is entirely a work-free vacation, but instead more of a cerebral break from programming, into the realm of gameplay design and interface design.

    I don't just want to design how the game will play out for the player. I have to design both the gameplay and the interface in such a way, that it creates a certain FEEL toward the player. It is more important to me to give the player a unique experience, an immersive atmosphere, than it is to rush to meet some kind of deadline.

    This is why I work alone, without a publisher, on my own time. It allows me more control over creating a quality game, even if it means slower releases.

    I'd like to note that what I am focusing the design on, is not just how gameplay will function or how I will program the gameplay (what I call "Game Modes" - a different enough interface and gameplay to differentiate from any other mode. An example would be Starflght's Ship traveling vs its ATV planet mining.) I am focusing the design on ways to make the player FEEL like a Captain of a ship. With each unique game mode, I want the player to feel like they are the CAPTAIN, or if in any other circumstance, the highest ranking officer in the current game mode. I also want the "Feel" to be like an interactive episode of a tv show. Kind of like the player steps into the shoes of the tv show's captain, but still watching the drama and suspense unfold before their eyes. Almost like an adventure game, but not quite, as the player's interaction is very heavy and the stories entirely procedural.

    Remember, this game centers around two specific things:

    The Ship & Crew as a whole, and the Captain (Player) who commands it.

    The former is the "story" or "episode" while the latter is the "game".
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
  34. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I finished creating the Shuttle/ATV, along with its cool animations.

    The default is a teal, while the rest of the windows signify a profession.

    The actual color is unimportant, so it doesn't really matter if any colors look the same.
    You only see the shuttles for a brief moment as they fly down and land after confirming an away mission.

    The primary one the player will see often, is the one associated with Command (black/red shirts) which never lands, and maybe the orange one if the player actively mines for resources.

    Shuttles.png
     
  35. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Major Update:

    More than likely, I (as well as thousands of providers across the state of Oklahoma) will become unemployed by July 1st or August 1st.

    Because of our horrific governor Mary Fallin and the evil GOP in Oklahoma, they decided to do a massive cut in mental health services so they can (for the millionth time) cut taxes to the rich. This means while the wealthiest of Oklahomans continue to pay the least amount of taxes (the Poor here pay more than DOUBLE, almost triple what the rich pay), the poor and middle class suffer as always with GOP policy.
    Meanwhile, they continue to deny the medicaid expansion which would more than cover mental health as well as physical health. Instead, the rich continue to get tax cuts while the poor die off and the middle class pay the costs anyway through expensive ER visits and hospitalization.

    It's absolutely sickening. What does this mean? It means that TENS OF THOUSANDS of adults and CHILDREN will be without vital mental health services. Institutionalization (imprisonment, hospitalization, juvenile detection, substance abuse) will rise in a state with one of the highest percent of mentally ill citizens. I cannot even imagine how many more children will enter juvenile detection. I know many providers myself who have turned children's lives around and kept them out of trouble. Even small businesses, especially in rural areas, will suffer economically as these providers used their own income to pay for food and services while at work. That means that the provider gets payed, then uses their own money to do their job, often to the point of not making very much on some weeks. This meant significant amounts of money into the economy of small business that will simply disappear permanently. The spend their own income for the children, for the adults in need. They do it because they care. Honestly, because you can't send someone home hungry when you know they have no food, or leave them tattered when you know they need clothes for school or to keep that job.

    Oklahoma leads the country in pretty much everything negative: mental illness, obesity, teen pregnancy, divorce, incarceration (not to mention we are the #1 state in the entire nation with incarceration of women), and more than that we have a hefting sum of ignorance to sell to anyone who comes down.



    How does this relate to the thread?

    I was creating this game working part time while I devoted full time to my real job and primary source of income. Not to mention all of the clients I absolutely love and pour my soul into helping. How many times have I taken home their console system to repair it for free, on my own time, spending hours when my only pay was knowing they had a coping mechanism to help in their time of struggle.

    I cannot tell you how angry and upset I am. Not at losing my job, but that tens of thousands of clients will no longer be served. That children without guidance and assistance will be lost to the system. I will also never respect a single person who votes republican in the state of Oklahoma. I knew the GOP was destructive to our nation, but I never before saw the real impact their greed had upon the people of America.

    What a backwards state I live in. What a backwards nation the USA can be.



    As unfortunate and horrible as it is, I will have to stop providing services to those in need (unless I do it for free, which I still will, but nowhere near as much and I literally cannot afford to do it) and instead I will have to devote full time to game development.

    I guess I am now joining the hundreds of other game developers who have to step off of the boat in faith, hoping to float when my game releases, or at the very least not drown when the time comes. Just like most indie devs who quit their job to work game dev full time, but I was not given a choice lol.

    Although I will not know until June 26th (when the board approves the cuts) there would have to be a miracle for them to not approve it, and the governor is frothing at the mouth waiting to sign it into law so she can have the go ahead to cut taxes once again for the rich. I do not have to remind you that this is after countless other recent tax cuts for the wealthy in addition to a recent statement by her staffers who literally stated "We cannot afford to cut taxes for the wealthy again. But we will try to anyway." I guess this is part of their success.


    I also might consider stopping these updates, as I did them out of fun in my downtime. If game dev is my income, I will want to devote all of my time working on my game to polish and release it asap.


    So after this game is released, you will most likely be seeing a second game very shortly afterwards. There are currently no plans for a second game (duh, the first one needs finished first) but it will most likely be a completely different game, but with the same awesome designers behind it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2014
  36. AgentParsec

    AgentParsec

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    How are you on music for this?
     
  37. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I believe I have found someone to do the music for me already, thank you :)
     
  38. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I calculated the total time I have spent on this project, including solidifying the design (creating the type of design document I have), artwork, programming, Unity scenes, game design while programming/artwork, etc.

    This doesn't include the time I was away from the computer, writing in a notepad or talking amongst others or contemplating the game. This just includes active time on the computer.

    However, it is almost perfectly accurate. Thanks to a wonderful program which keeps track of literally everything I do.

    This lacks a few minutes (which probably end up totally 1-5 hours max) googling some stuff, but does include a lot of scripting references and the like, browsing through asset store documentation I purchased, etc.


    Total Time so far: 77 hours, 8 minutes, 19 seconds.

    Honestly, it was really only about 7 1/2 full work days (a lot of half days).
    So really, not a lot of work. There is a ton of extra time (17 hours) which was mostly just me goofing around not really doing anything major, maybe minor bug fixes but not efficient at all.

    Artwork: 14h 49m 35s total
    All of the planets, stars, systems, suns, shuttle, etc. Does NOT include characters as they were created long before I started creating this game. Does include the GUI, which apparently took the longest to make by far. Planets/Stars/Systems/Suns took petty time, while the Shuttle alone took 4 1/2 hours, and the GUI 7 hours 14 mins.

    SystemMap: 19h 42m 30s total
    This doesn't really make sense, because I have multiple days where I spent 3-9 hours working on stuff. I honestly don't remember all of what this entails. This includes the system scene, suns, planets, creating planet artwork (not included in above Artwork total), procedural generation of systems, suns, and planets (as well as the planet's temperature based on distance to sun, etc.)

    ...part of above ...Unity SystemMap Scene: 7h 16min
    ...part of above ...Planets which includes Data, creating the GFX, and designing planets: 3h 20min
    ...part of above ...Changing Scene Logic, when the player enters a system and leaves the system, player coordinates between StarMap/SystemMap, as well as misc bug fixes, collision (I assume interface collision) and polishing: 1h 17min
    ...part of above ...Unique rendering method for planets + Procedural Generation + other stuff: 9h 54min


    Design (mainly mindmapping, some research, etc): 10h total

    Fixing Unity's unacceptable rendering flaw (which was fixed in 4.6) and implementation of alternative rendering method using Vectrosity: somewhere between 3h to 4h 23m total


    Learning Unity3D's GUI system (to the point that I can actually use it): 2h 20min total


    StarMap Scene (creating the Galaxy, using gameobjects to create SpaceAreas, Galaxy, Systems, etc): 14h total

    Basic GUI in the beginning (Clicking systems, tooltips, etc.): 2h 3m




    This doesn't include the procedural generation data which creates the galaxy, which took me exactly ONE full work day to finish. This is anywhere between 6h to 12h. Probably closer to 8h-9h.

    That would bring the total to 85h to have a game very similar to Starflight, minus the mining, minus the purchasing systems/crew, minus the trading, and minus the alien encounters (minus ship combat) and story.

    Lots more to go, but I've definitely made some great progress in just 8 days actually working on the game.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2014
  39. oasf

    oasf

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2013
    Posts:
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    You are currently making my dream game. And it looks great too! I wish you all of luck on this project - and keep up the good work!
     
    CarterG81 likes this.
  40. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Thank you very much :)

    It is posts like yours which keep me motivated to continue posting updates.

    I spent 4 hours yesterday with the other key game designer fleshing out the rest of the game so we can go ahead and finish the skeleton and then start adding content.

    The next thing I am working on will be "Bridge Mode". This takes place entirely on the ship, and involves the player encountering another alien space vessel.

    The gameplay will consist of the player's officers and the bridge, alongside the alien species encountered. The player then must translate their language and respond to them any way they choose (with options among all 8 professions) among other choices based on what is happening. Either consulting your officers unlocks additional options, or it is simply a common action (ex. Fire Weapons!).

    Each alien species will be procedurally generated alongside the procedural galaxy. This means that the blob aliens in one game may be like klingons, while in the next game they may be like vulcans. Part of the game is discovering these alien species and learning about who they are and what they want. Making friends, and enemies, along the way.

    The player's interactions with the alien will be a mix of actions (by profession) and dialogue choices (responses to alien communication or action). Combat will also be included in Bridge Mode, but is heavily involved in the traditional way of treky combat. It is less about blowing the enemy up, and more about resolving the problem the way the player wants. (In this way, the player can use his superior navigation to run into space clouds to gain an advantage against a superior ship, or if they are a war ship simply disable their ship, if fast try to run away, etc. It will be entirely up to the player. The only difference is that during combat, your choices are more life-threatening with every decision. I mean, you probably don't want to waste your turns doing useless actions when you're being hit by their weapons over and over again.

    All 8 professions deal with the alien species in this mode.


    Security- Threat Analysis, Ship Weapons, Boarding Parties
    Navigator- Stealth, Manuevers, Space Weather. (ex. Navigating into dangerous or special space weather (asteroid fields, flying close to a star, into a magnetic field, etc.)
    Communicator- Decryption, Translation, Trade (ex. Offering of Goods for Ceasefire, ex. "Finish translating their language before they blow us apart!!! Find out why they're shooting at us!")
    Psychologist- Alien Profiler, Cultural Analysis (ex. Suggesting to apologize as a solution, based on alien culture, resulting in a ceasefire.)
    Doctor- Biological Analysis (ex. They are weak to this virus, which would kill them in seconds. They are weak to heat, I suggest getting closer to a heat source. "NAVIGATOR! TO THE SUN!")
    Entertainer- Diplomacy (ex. "Let me talk to them captain, and see if I can't come to an agreement and ceasefire. Success! They simply ask that we send over our Doctor temporarily to cure some of their sick. Do you agree?" 'No, send a Security team disguised as doctors, and take their bridge!')
    Science- Problem Solving (ex. Making a suggestion of some sort to resolve the problem, dealing with energy, suggesting player to ask a specific profession for some reason which gives a bonus to their success, etc.) Might change in the future.
    Engineer- Engines (ex. Push engines to unstable speed), Transporter (beam enemy captain aboard because their disruptors are crappy), Shields (ex. overcharge shields, creating a energy burst temporarily stunning them, allowing the player to immediately follow-up with an action such as firing weapons or escaping.)

    Those are just some examples. The choices will vary based on different variables, but this is a good portion of the content that will be added to the game. Dialogue choices based on profession, which change based on what is happening.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2014
  41. KheltonHeadley

    KheltonHeadley

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    Posts:
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    Not enough pixels. ;)
     
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  42. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Jul 25, 2013
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    Sorry, yesterday I spilled all my pixels :(

     
  43. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    Working on designing how the layout will go. Getting a few different ideas, slowly tossing them out as I narrow down how it should look.

    This isn't how it will look, but shows that process alongside a bit how the gameplay works when encountering alien ships. What IS how it will be is the circular collection of officers surrounding the captain and first officer. This is the player's interface, where they click a character to make decisions. Non-Profession decisions (such as groveling to the aliens, or threatening them with certain death) will be part of the Captain's actions.

    I don't mean to pat myself on the back, but reading the Officer's statements (along with the rest of the game's design) just makes me giggle with excitement wanting to play the game myself.

    Finally, a game that will make the player FEEL as though they are the Captain. I mean, having your own officers make suggestions without you even asking is so fun. Plus, I just love the freedom to choose how I handle aliens. I can finally play a game where I have tons of options other than "Blow them up in Combat!!!"

    "I am going to Science the hell outta you!"

    NewBridgeMode.png
     
  44. landon912

    landon912

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    Nov 8, 2011
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    This is cool. Keep the updates coming!
     
  45. CarterG81

    CarterG81

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    I added an angelic alien race. They emit energy which comes off as an angelic light, so they can blind people. They also have wings, which may or may not be functional by the time they evolve from being sentient.

    For work on a starship (sentient, player's crew) they wear robes. (Example: Pink, for security.)
    If they are non-sentient (animals) or an alien civilization they are nude or wear those robes of a different (civilian) color.


    What I mean by non-sentient humanoid animals, would be a near-evolved humanoid species, akin to an advanced monkey. Yet they are still a few generations from sentience. At least, they appear so anyway. In game terms, their behavior will be that of an animal, not a sentient being.

    They are larger than humans. Taller, bigger.

    Angels.png
     
  46. CarterG81

    CarterG81

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    Posts:
    1,717
    Working on the ship graphics for the Bridge.

    Getting closer to the design I want.

    (see post #43)

    Bridge.png

    Still working on an idea/design for the front viewer.

    BridgeWithAlien.png



    Anyway, it'll end up looking something akin to this:

    BridgeModeImproved.png
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2014
  47. CarterG81

    CarterG81

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    Posts:
    1,717
    Pretty close to finishing the polish on the bridge graphics...woo!

    BridgeModeImproved2.png

    Next up, implementing the interface! In other words: bridge mode gameplay. Will postpone content until after the skeleton of all other features are finished.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2014
  48. CarterG81

    CarterG81

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    Posts:
    1,717
    Finished creating a new species. They are a gelatinous species which most resemble that of Earth's Gummi Bears. They take on the color of whatever they please, perhaps through dyes. Naturally they are the bright yellow, but if on a player's ship they conform to profession standard colors on whim.

    LightBeings.png
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2014
  49. CarterG81

    CarterG81

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2013
    Posts:
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    Maybe I should make them a Gummi-Bear type of species. That would be fun :p

    To all you energy-creature lovers, don't worry, there will be several energy-like entities, including what will be akin to a willow wisp. Then don't forget the floating orb creatures! :p

    It actually only takes me 30 minutes to design, draw, and finish a creature. After that, another 30min to 1h 30min to animate it fully. All in all, each species only takes 1h-2h to create. That is how there will be so many in the game. That, and they are central to the gameplay, lol.

    Mind you, those are the more difficult creatures to create. I think I had one that took 3 hours, but the vast majority take no more than 30 minutes. Of course, I've had a creature created and fully animated in just 30min. It is a lot easier when you already have the base model to work with. Experience isn't really required, as I think the original human sprites which started the idea for this game only took 2 hours to perfect, going from total crap (and me almost quitting game art entirely before it even began) to art I just love.

    Pixel Art is surprisingly easy. Not to mention the endless amount of references, especially for old school gamers like myself who love the NES/SNES/SEGA/Atari/oldschool PC styles.

    Pixel Art like this is surprisingly easy. I have no artistic talent of any sort, and my drawing capabilities when starting this project consisted of stick figures and mockery drawings that would embarrass most people.

    One skill that did help me create some great characters, like my favorites (Zombie & Ghost) would be my love for miniatures and painting them.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2014
  50. WermHat

    WermHat

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Posts:
    62
    I am completely enthralled by the few glances we've had into this game. The dev diary aspect is fantastic too, and I'm glad you've kept it up. Please excuse the double-post, but I'm about to send you a Private Message and I know those are usually easy to miss. I really hope to hear back from you soon :)
     
    CarterG81 likes this.