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December 13, 2017, 06:22:43 pm

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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsCaptain's Way - Spaceship crew management sim
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Author Topic: Captain's Way - Spaceship crew management sim  (Read 7012 times)
orseoste7o
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« Reply #60 on: May 09, 2017, 04:01:03 am »

Bunch of new stuff to show everybody to day! However bit pressed for time, so I might go back and edit this post later. Behold:
Gif of supreme commander style icons of zoom in action:



Prototype events in action (Excuse the template text):





Finally I've just launched a game maker asset showing you how to do be able to create and fly basic captain forever style block ships, like in captain's way! Check it out here:
https://marketplace.yoyogames.com/assets/5377/physics-based-block-ships

« Last Edit: May 09, 2017, 04:08:59 am by orseoste7o » Logged
orseoste7o
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« Reply #61 on: May 13, 2017, 12:34:23 am »

Hi guys! Made lots of progress the last few days. My main focus has been on the star map and events, check it:



I've redone the stars to be much better looking overall and more random, added an awesome filter so it looks like you're controlling your ship from an old monitor, and overhauled events.



Of course you'll be able to turn off the filer in the options, but I quite like it for now.



Events are now set up so I can easily duplicate template objects and change fields to easily make heaps of new events that result in rewards of money and unlocks, battles, or nothing at all except maybe some funny text.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2017, 11:44:53 pm by orseoste7o » Logged
orseoste7o
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« Reply #62 on: May 14, 2017, 07:49:46 pm »

Finished polishing up events today, just adding in new events for a playable build for secret reasons to be revealed soon. Doing this has made me realize how great it could be to have a good writer and some help thinking up events, so if you have any ideas I'm all ears! Your name will go in the credits too.





The best thing about this is that now everything has been successfully tied up, and the full gameplay loop is there. You build your ship, explore the starmap, go to stations to rebuild or upgrade your ship, and deal with events, some of which result in battles. And it's fun! Thank god. 
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orseoste7o
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« Reply #63 on: May 15, 2017, 03:28:53 am »





NEW TRAILER :D This gives a much more accurate representation of where the game is at right now compared to the last trailer, and where it's headed. Let me know what you think!
« Last Edit: May 16, 2017, 05:59:50 pm by orseoste7o » Logged
orseoste7o
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« Reply #64 on: May 21, 2017, 04:35:15 am »

Happy to say I've got Captain;s Way to a point where you can actually play an entire play through of the game from start to finish, building your ship, going through the star map dealing with events, and taking part of awesome space battles. Recently the focus has been on crushing bugs, adding more functionality to events, making everything more user friendly and setting up to start work on the settings menu. Have some screenshots!





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orseoste7o
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« Reply #65 on: May 23, 2017, 09:01:58 pm »

Quick overall progress update! While the game is playable from start to finish, there are several key things that need to be done  before I would consider the game 'complete' enough to be playable in some sort of early access form. These being:

Crew mood: As this affects all parts of the game, mainly ship building and events. Crew mood will primarily be used to influence event outcomes and create new events based on the current mood, but is also influenced by the design of your ship. Currently more often than not the best way to design your ship is with very tight 1 block wide corridors and no rooms as so you can jam on as many weapons as possible on the outside of your ship. When I implement crew mood, your crew will be unhappy with the lack of space in your ship and that won't be good for you at all in the long run.

Settings: Pretty self explanatory, it's very important I allow play testers to tweak the game's settings to their liking. There is already a settings.ini in game but you can't actually tweak it from the menu.

Overhauling crew cards and making the game scale properly: This kind of goes hand in hand with settings. Some parts of the UI don't work at all on smaller resolutions, and crew cards in the ship builder are just generally very clunky. I plan on redoing them so you can have different upgrades per species of crew member, and also set crew starting positions in ship builder which carry on to the saving/loading positions buttons in battles.

Aside from those 3 features there is of course plenty of balancing that needs to be done, along with just more content in general. There's only 6 different events currently in game, roughly 5 part unlocks and 1 faction. I want to expand all of those  to the point where the game is reasonably replayable for an alpha build. So as you can see, still plenty to do. I'm getting there though!

As to recent progress, the other day I implemented an undo button in the ship builder! Unsurprisingly very useful.



You can also find random groups of monsters in battles sometimes which can be pretty cool.




  
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orseoste7o
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« Reply #66 on: May 29, 2017, 02:11:58 am »

So my focus for the last few days has been on overhauling crew upgrades and info in the ship builder. Here's what I have now:



Crew cards now take up much less space, so the ship builder is actually workable on lower resolutions, and allows for a variety of unique upgrades per crew member. This'll be put in use when I implement different types of crew members, or just have each crew member have their own unique upgrades. The upgrades now expand out of the cards instead of just always being there to save space.

You can also pin each crew member to a different starting position in your ship, and when you save your positions in battles those positions should also carry back to the ship builder. After I finish this off the focus will either be on a 'crew set up' screen, where you can change your crew's appearance and names before you start, or crew mood. Till next time!

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orseoste7o
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« Reply #67 on: May 31, 2017, 11:39:22 pm »

Happy to say work on crew mood has finally commenced. This is a big deal because crew mood is (possibly) the last major feature I need to implement for Captain's Way to be 'feature complete'. It also ties the entire game together, as crew mood is both influenced and influenced by ship design, events, and battles. Naturally this also means it's a big undertaking to get working.

I did want to take a moment to highlight why crew mood is tied to ship design. A big problem with the game in it's current state is there is a single clear best way of designing ships that allows players to just spam weapon/defensive parts and breeze through battles without ever having a block destroyed or losing a crew member. By implementing crew mood players will also have to consider space and comfort, meaning they'll have less money to spend on weapon spam and more on flooring, and decorations such as beds. So pretty much this is me enforcing players to go through and play the game as intended, and also allow for more 'story telling' and replayability.  

However due to the nature of how I want it to work, and how I've programmed things so far implementing crew mood will probably be a slow tedious task that I'm not really looking forward too, but I'll get there. This just means I might not have much exciting to show for the next week or two. Implementing the consequences of having really low mood could be funny though.

Here's what I have now:



The crew info screen is just a mock up right now and not actually functional, but the end result should look pretty similar to this.

If anybody has any thoughts and ideas on what other factors should influence crew mood, I'm all ears!
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orseoste7o
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« Reply #68 on: June 05, 2017, 05:00:36 am »

Work continues on crew mood. The goal is to implement a system where I can easily add different modifiers, that could be called at any part of the game, and also last either indefinitely, until a condition is met, or you've jumped between a set amount of stars.

A rough draft of different things that will influence your crew is:

Sick/Well rested
Traumatized/Entertained
Uncomfortable/Proud
In good health/In bad health
claustrophobic/lots of space
Sparse/Well Furnished
Badly damaged/No damage
Lost a crew member/Gained a crew member

Some things like 'entertained' can be bought at space pubs or whatever that I'm yet to implement. There will also be timed things like 'too long in space' or parts of the star map with nebula that induce moodiness. Sparse/Well furnished will be influenced by decorations such as beds you can buy in the ship builder I'm yet to add. When something results in the same modifier a number of times, the 'influence' of that modifier grows and the effect will take longer to wear off (the number in the screenshots below) but there won't be any duplicate modifiers.

I'm in the middle of setting up a template mood modifier now:



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orseoste7o
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« Reply #69 on: June 19, 2017, 04:29:25 am »

Sorry the delay again guys! Got caught up with e3 and end of semester exams/assignments for a few weeks there, but back into it now. Happy to say I've finished up all the fundamentals for crew mood now, you can have multiple factors affecting crew which persist between ship building, the star map, and battles (all of which can have events that create new factors, such as a crew death in battles). These factors are also saved and loaded each play through, and can have durations so a factor like 'uncomfortable' can expire after a certain number of jumps, or last indefinitely until an issue is fixed like 'ship is cramped'.



Crew mood currently influences crew movement speed, and tomorrow I'll start work so good mood results in good events and interruptions (A crew member saving you from a scam for example) and bad mood results in drama. I'll also be adding in all the different factors I've discussed before as I need to.

Another small thing I implemented today was mood influencing what crew members say when you order them around. Happy crew will say things like 'Anything for you!' and salty crew members will only respond with 'k' or 'whatever'.



I've also made lots of little fixes so giving orders feels better and is more precise, and there was this weird bug where the selection box would flash up at weird sizes. Finally have another screenshot of a battle because  finally figured out how to save screenshots without using print screen in game maker studio:




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orseoste7o
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« Reply #70 on: June 23, 2017, 12:20:35 am »

Currently smack bang in the middle of working moods into my existing events, so crew members can influence your decisions for the better or worse, give you rewards and cause drama. I also took some pretty standard screenshots of battles on my latest play through.





I also have this updated mock up of what Captain's Way will look like post graphics overhaul, under artist Matthew Weekes hands:

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Zireael
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« Reply #71 on: June 23, 2017, 12:31:25 am »

Are you doing away with the nice pseudo-iso look?
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orseoste7o
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« Reply #72 on: June 23, 2017, 04:36:32 pm »

Are you doing away with the nice pseudo-iso look?

First time I've seen my art referred to as a 'nice pseudo-iso look', thanks! But yes, that's the plan. I feel like the new art better fits the mood and new crew management style of gameplay, is nicer looking with more depth and looks much more 'commercial' in general.
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orseoste7o
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« Reply #73 on: June 29, 2017, 07:59:45 pm »

Quick announcement; I'm happy to say I'll be showcasing Captain's Way at this year's AVCon in adelaide, in the Indie Games Room! Come say hi!

You can check out the rest of the line up in this trailer:




(Captain's Way is #2!)
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orseoste7o
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« Reply #74 on: July 07, 2017, 09:26:07 pm »

Life has been relatively hectic recently due to personal issues, but I have had time to spit and polish the crew combat so it's juicier, fix a bunch of bugs and implement warring factions in the star map:



By this I mean in the star map screen you can see battles occasionally breaking out around stars, as neighboring stars send ships to try and take each other over. You'll notice this only happens when two stars of different factions are directly connected to each other. What this means game play wise is the star map will be changing dynamically as you play, as factions conquer each other and become obsolete. It could be very possible for a faction or two to be completely eliminated by the time you make it to the exit, meaning no more faction specific events and battles with that faction's ships.

This won't feature in the build I'll be using at AVCon however, as there is no point considering there is only 1 faction in the game currently.

Next I plan to continue to juice the game a little and make it more satisfying to play, play test crew being able to repair damaged blocks, not just seal breaches, and start to implement a crew set up screen so you can name your crew members and whatnot.
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orseoste7o
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« Reply #75 on: July 27, 2017, 04:42:01 am »

Safe to say this post has been a long time coming. AVCon this last weekend was a blast (pictures to follow), but the events that transpired that weekend/the weeks leading up to that week end AND the last few day have been SO BUSY I haven't had time to talk about Captain's Way on any platform but the game's own booth.

SO. Leading up to AVCon the focus was primarily on bug fixes and polish. This was a mistake, as what I should have been doing was writing a built in tutorial and some convention friendly functionality, like auto resetting the game after 30 seconds of inactivity.



Last Friday was a mess of waiting for equipment to be tested and tagged and lugging TVs around the convention center, and prepping other game developers for interviews and whatnot as I was also a part of the marketing team for AVCon.

The weekend itself went well, while my booth didn't draw as many players as the games with more eye candy did (there was a big fancy 7 man studio with a game made in unreal engine right next to me) I found after somebody took the time to understand the game, they stayed and wanted to finish it and kept at it, which was super rewarding to witness. Most of the feedback I had was around how intuitive the ship builder and crew commands while pausing were, so expect to see improvements there in the weeks to come. Quote of the weekend was 'It's like a much bigger better FTL' so while I'm actually trying to NOT compete with FTL, that made me happy.


It's me!

It's worth noting here that I also had house parties Friday and Saturday nights, and then an AVCon after party sunday night that involved me coordinating an in-sync slut drop on the DJ stage and attempting to twerk in front of a good 60 people on the dance floor. Good times.

Then coming back from AVCon I jumped straight into uni for a few days, and now I'm here. So that's the jist of what's been happening, honestly I could go on about the happenings of the last week alone for another few thousands words but I've got a game to make! Shout out to the developer to my right, who was showcasing 'Underground'. Right now, I need to take a few days to get back into a routine and then I'll get right on tackling the feedback I got on the weekend. Should have something proper and new to show soon!



Till next time!
« Last Edit: July 27, 2017, 04:48:08 am by orseoste7o » Logged
justincavenagh
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« Reply #76 on: July 28, 2017, 09:46:35 pm »

Great to hear you had such a awesome time.

Also there is no better way to end a convention weekend then with a well timed slut drop  Tongue
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