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999707 Posts in 39242 Topics- by 30653 Members - Latest Member: alexscottheath

April 24, 2014, 08:59:51 PM
TIGSource ForumsFeedbackDevLogsStarDiver - Scifi Space Romp[PC,Mac,Linux, Consoles]
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Author Topic: StarDiver - Scifi Space Romp[PC,Mac,Linux, Consoles]  (Read 3950 times)
friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« on: November 06, 2013, 04:58:32 PM »


StarDiver:

Project StarDiver is moving right along. Join us for a ride through the galaxy.... or at least its current, early development state!

We are a small three person family team (myself, wife, and son) and are very excited to share our progress on StarDiver with the IndieDB community. Sometimes small indie teams can get so head down in creation we get isolated from the community we love. We are going to start doing a once a week progress report to show what we have been up to. This last week our efforts were on making solar exploration, music, and aliens.

Our goal for the art, music, story, combat, and exploration is to put the player in a universe filled with life and intrigue. StarDiver is a story-driven adventure/rpg that spans numerous star systems and is teaming with alien life, conflict, and dying stars in desperate need of saving.



This last week we have taken our first steps in making StarDiver's solar navigation and exploration engine. We want the game universe to be anything but generic. So when it came to discussions about procedural generation of things, we had to take a hard look at what we should hand craft and what we shouldn't. We will be using procedural generation of planetary surfaces, clouds, and atmospheres so that no two planets look the same. We will also use procedural generation for solar system layouts, number of planets, and number of moons so no two solar systems are the same. However, everyone who plays the single player experience will have the procedurally generated objects seeded the same. So, when comparing notes with friends on locations, story, and planets that look cool or are loaded with the best resources, they will be sharing the same experience.

We may provide a sandbox experience as a secondary goal, but our primary target is an excellent single player game with a deep story arc, numerous unique aliens, dialog trees, rpg progression, and more. So on to some technical stuff...

The solar navigation and combat screenshots/videos for this update are mostly from a single solar system which is in a dense red nebula. Solar system backdrops will vary greatly depending on the location within the galaxy, the type of star at their center and the alien race which controls them. We implemented nebula clouds volumetricly so they shift and flow as you move through and add depth to the movement. Another thing we added this week was random electrical flashes in the nebula for a bit more ambiance.

Also completed was solar gravity with some fun slingshot effects -- whip around the sun to help get a great speed boost, but get too close and you will burn up skimming the sun's surface. Gravity will play a key role in combat as well, helping slow ships outmaneuver faster rivals. Watch as a less skilled rival tries to follow you through a slingshot near the star and burn up due to slight miscalculation.  

Combat for StarDiver is retro, action oriented, and unique. Instead of upgrading generic hulls with generic weapons, StarDiver will feature numerous alien races who each have their own very unique ships. One example is the SunDagger, a ship from a race of beings who call stars their home. They are immune to the effects of gravity and dive through stars to pull a streaming ball of plasma to toss at foes brave enough to tangle with them. The Krex Cruiser is another example of a unique ship design. Its six long-range broadside cannons have exploding warheads with lots of splash damage, while its nose pulse can smash into foes trying to close the distance and fling them back to long range where the cruiser is most effective.



My son finished up the mellow exploration background tune featured in the solar exploration video. I'm very proud of his musical passion and skill. I think his tunes are matching perfectly with the feel we are trying to convey. Next up he will be doing another round of sound fx. I look forward to getting the nose pulse fx for the Krex ship since we are reusing the flak cannon sound. Here are a couple of other music samples:


My wife has been hard at work on alien artwork and animation. Here are just a couple of the planned alien races. Our goal is to have 15-30 unique alien races, each with their own back story, region of space, and custom ships. The project is fortunate to have my wife's artistic imagination and skill on board. Here are a few samples of her alien creations:

Our first attempts at 2D skeletal animation:

The Frik and Voolgard are getting their bridge backdrops. These still are works in progress and will get cleaned up quite a bit. We are also considering adding some bridge animation like lights flashing, things moving around etc:

Being a small and under-funded indie team, we are considering crowd funding when our project is further along. Also being techie geeks, we couldn't think of anything more fun for both us as developers and potential backers than 3D printed StarDiver ships. Santa brought us a 3D printer and we've taken a go at printing a couple of our early ships:

Thanks for taking a look at our work in progress. PLEASE, PLEASE (couple more pleases) give us some feedback. It is very easy for indie developers to be too heads down in their creation and we can easily lose motivation and oomph. Gamer feedback is pure rocket-fuel for indie developers. It gives us buckets of motivation and helps us refine the project into a much better end result!
« Last Edit: March 22, 2014, 01:53:06 PM by friken » Logged

March In March
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« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2013, 08:12:01 PM »

Is there still no Untiy web player plugin for linux?
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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2013, 07:31:20 AM »

Is there still no Untiy web player plugin for linux?

Unfortunately, not yet (if ever). With Chrome announcing a timeline of killing browser plugins like flash/unityplayer, I doubt there is much motivation there to ever have a linux-unity webplayer.

Here is a link to a linux build of the early melee combat. I included the .x86 and a universal .x86_64:

https://app.box.com/s/5r5mcd6s1b3uy3n2pl7z

My ubuntu install is hosed atm due to failed video driver install and I'm too lazy to go fix it, so I have not tested it yet. Let me know if that works for you. I did read some people have to install something to run unity-linux builds. Info here:

http://answers.unity3d.com/questions/404131/how-to-run-the-exported-game-on-ubuntu.html
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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2013, 06:24:20 PM »

Today's progress... we are working on ways to turn our alien concept art into usable game assets. The goal is to have each alien race have a unique bridge/alien scene for dialog and story sequences ala starflight and starcontrol. First go at alien idle-animation:



Here is the current sketch of the bridge scene awaiting color and refinement:

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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2013, 01:17:04 PM »

Changed tools for the animation to something that supported lerping/easing. We should be able to do better animation blending as well.

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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2013, 03:22:25 PM »

Today's animation effort:

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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2013, 03:23:37 PM »

My son has finished the first couple songs for the game. I'm too close to the project and biased so feedback please  Beg

Hyperspace
Combat
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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2013, 02:31:52 PM »

Tweaked numerous things in combat. Video uploaded here:

StarDiver Early Combat video

Does this forum support youtube links to show image/video inline? If so what is the tag?
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« Reply #8 on: November 10, 2013, 03:57:05 PM »

Hey friken, More-Badass from GAF. Not a dev, but a passionate indie gamer and I'm very active in the Indie Threads there. Love what you have so far, especially the art. Rare to see alien designs that actually look alien.

Any possibility at a downloadable version of the combat demo? It runs pretty poorly in-browser for me, not sure if I'm the only one. Looking forward to how this progresses
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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2013, 04:06:02 PM »

Love what you have so far, especially the art. Rare to see alien designs that actually look alien.

Any possibility at a downloadable version of the combat demo? It runs pretty poorly in-browser for me, not sure if I'm the only one. Looking forward to how this progresses

Thanks so much for the kind words. You would be surprised how much they help our motivation!

As far as the webplayer running slow, I think the build I put up last defaults to the highest quality settings, 4xAA, full screen fx, 4k textures, and relatively high aniso. Try this build. You can select different resolutions and quality settings:

Windows StarDiver Combat Nov-11-2013

It is still VERY VERY early in development, so be kind to the obviously incomplete aspects.. ie no UI and on death you or the AI just vanishes Smiley
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Thomas Finch
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« Reply #10 on: November 10, 2013, 04:15:08 PM »

This looks awesome! I would definitely buy this.
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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2013, 05:23:08 PM »

This looks awesome! I would definitely buy this.

Love kind feedback! Thanks.

Worked today on new sun and surface fx.
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Christian
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« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2013, 05:30:59 PM »

That downloadable demo worked like a charm. Movement feels a bit weird though, but hey, it's super early.

Man, love the backstory that this is a family effort. Hope this isn't too intrusive, but how old is your son? If he's learning to code...
Anyway, if only my Dad had decided to be an indie developer... Always wanted to get into game development. I'm thinking of trying my hand at Stencyl
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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2013, 06:04:47 AM »

That downloadable demo worked like a charm. Movement feels a bit weird though, but hey, it's super early.

Thanks for the feedback. I'd love to hear more detail about the controls and what you found 'wierd'. I've tried a few different control schemes from all keyboard, to mouse/kb and various tweaks on each and haven't found that 'perfect' control yet. What would you like to see changed in the controls?
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friken
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2114922 ewertewert@hotmail.com ewertewert
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« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2013, 07:35:44 AM »

We have been working on the sun surface and plasma trail. It has been difficult to get the sun/trails looking great independent of the background (stars/nebulas/different colors). This is one of those cases where a lot of work goes in but I'm not sure if many people will notice the differences.



Video:
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