Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

 
Advanced search

1369411 Posts in 64342 Topics- by 56356 Members - Latest Member: grui4

November 18, 2019, 09:26:49 PM

Need hosting? Check out Digital Ocean
(more details in this thread)
TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsAether Way - 2D space rts
Pages: [1] 2
Print
Author Topic: Aether Way - 2D space rts  (Read 3773 times)
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« on: February 06, 2018, 10:32:20 AM »


Hey guys.

I know you don't really like strategy games here, but i still want to show one to you.




Steam page: https://store.steampowered.com/app/1003760/Aether_Way/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/DonutFearless

What is this?
This game is about ... life in space. The space is not a sci-fi space and i didn't concentrate much on realism here.
You play for some abstract life form, that travels across the space and evolves. On each level you will be fighting other races, exploring the areas, activating events, doing missions,searching for craft resources and managing some economy(that's some common stuff for space games, isn't it?).



Space with no spaceships?
Well, there are so many games with the same cosmic pattern and i guessed i need something new here. In Aether Way the space is crowded with various life beings that feel rather good even without being a starship.



Is it a strategy?
The main genre is RTS - it means there will be a lot of battles in game. Actually, i tried to make some 'extended' strategy, meaning that there will be 'fronts' and 'rears', some strategic topology and a level result won't be decided in just one great battle. But there is also a 'action' mode, that's when you take your special unit and use it (like in common top-down space action/roguelike) to explore space, doing diversions/distractions, just shooting aliens and other stuff. The feature is that you need to combine strategy and action in order to achieve good results.



Procedural generation again?
Yes, most of things in this game are procedurally generated, from level backgrounds to game music. But i find it satisfying enough. So there shouldn't be impassable levels and dead ends in the middle of game(well, may be just a little...).



Economy system?
The aim was to allow the player to concentrate on battles, so there won't be any messages like 'we need more minerals' - units are built automatically and main resource is inexhaustible. But for those who likes management in strategies there is a optional economic layer which you can use to improve race's combat abilities or growth rate.


What's up with music? It's strange.
Since i'm a bad composer i tried to make a pc do all the work here and wrote music autogeneration algorithm. I'm still improving it so i have a hope that it'll be able to produce much better music in future.


Inspirations?
I think i took some stuff from eufloria, but originally it was intended to be a music game and idk where i turned a wrong way.


And if you are still there, you can find developer version here:
http://www.indiedb.com/games/aether-way/downloads/aether-way-0-9-0

Thanks!
« Last Edit: December 27, 2018, 05:56:00 AM by fearless_donut » Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
HSI
Level 0
**


View Profile WWW
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2018, 02:22:28 AM »

Wow, looks really gorgeous!

How are you generating all of it?
Logged

HEY YOU, YEAH YOU!
Check out my devlog: Undergrowth - an open-ended farming sim with a survival/craft heart!
Wink You won't regret it.
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2018, 06:12:34 AM »

Quote
Wow, looks really gorgeous!
Hi. Thank you.
As for procedural generation, i use different methods, but they are quite common:

Background
I just reimplemented some functions of photoshop/gimp/other drawing apps in my code.
      
At first, put a gradient


Then do some stars/nebulas/dust drawing(actually they all are just drawn spheres with special blending modes).
   

Then put a random ifs images(i used Apophysis app to generate these things).


And at last put something like clouds(perlin noise).

   
Actually there are a lot of articles like 'how to draw space in photoshop' or something - that's what i really did but using my code instead of photoshop. Of course, this method requires you to write a lot of code by yourself and in reality is not the most effective one. I used it because i've already had most of the code working since i made some drawing apps in the past.

Units & planetary trees
The idea is simple as well.
You have number of initial images in your collections. Take two random images, then combine them into one image, and then save result back into your collection.


And with each step you will get more complex forms with more details.
Since this game is 2D, this method goes well, and from basic forms:


you can get something like this:


or this:



Music generation
I can't say much about this now. I just wanted to make pc create music, then read some music theory, then made this algorithm(from the 8th try). I hope some day i will release some usefull application based on it. I'll probably post some music samples here later.
   
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
gmx0
Level 0
***


The Messenger


View Profile WWW
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2018, 07:05:07 PM »

I would suggest getting rid of the UI eventually because it looks more sci-fi (black hexagonal-ish text boxes) than fantasy. It is breaking my immersion of the screenshot. Otherwise it looks beautiful.
Logged

jay3sh
Level 0
**

I am groot


View Profile WWW
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2018, 04:55:56 AM »

Awesome. Thanks for the explanation

Quote
Take two random images, then combine them into one image,

How do you manage to do that?
Logged

fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2018, 07:17:07 AM »

Hi there.
Quote
I would suggest getting rid of the UI eventually because it looks more sci-fi
Now that you mentioned it, the UI is really in different style.  Durr...?
I think i'll do something with it in the future. Thanks.

Quote
How do you manage to do that?
I'm not certain what are you asking about, but i'll try to explain some more:

Let's say, i somehow managed to draw this stunning image:

I'll refer to it as 'image A'.

For now i can't draw anything but 'image A', but i want to draw a tree. Since i'm not very bright artist, my tree will look like this:

(I know that a tree consists of several branches and i use my 'image A' as a branch in this tree).
I'll refer to this image as 'image X1'.

Now my tree is not really outstanding, but i'll try to make it better. I'll draw the same tree again, but for each branch instead of 'image A' i'll use 'image X1'.
Now my tree looks like this:

(image X2)

Now i'll repeat tree drawing step with image X2

and images X3, X4, X5. X6 will be:


As you can guess, these things resemble a fractal and a number of iterations will define its details level.

Let's look how these trees will look like if we use another image instead of arrow:


some greeny leaf


and an unknown blue thing


'image X1' is kind of scheme that you write in your code, where each arrow describes position, orientation and scale of smaller images, when you combine them into result.

Of course, you can come up with other schemes, for example:

or


Also you don't have to stick to only one scheme or one image, everything is up to your imagination.


To implement this process in code, you need a number of methods, which will work with image's pixels i.e. rotating, resizing, then using result as a texture. I know that Unity allows to change texture's pixel data, but not certain about other game engines.

Hope this will be usefull to someone.

Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2018, 11:32:55 AM »

Hello again.

As a start point of my devlogs i'll try to explain some concepts of the game's world.


The heart
A formless travelling life. The heart was born by the Greater Sun and was sent out to explore the world outside. The heart lives in stars. Being in a star, the heart can control the flow of life and keep star system alive.



Life flow
The heart controls the life of the sun and sends it to awake planets. The life flows into the planet, grows via the planetary trees and individualizes as elements. The element is a sun's life bound with the material form. The elements are the most common form of life in the space. When the element dies, it's life becomes free from material form and returns to the sun again.


Races
The heart can gather smaller lives(essences) around it on its journey. Together they form a race. The race can be of 4 ways: floral, flow, dark, tech. Each way gives unique abilities to race. The heart will follow selected way until it returns back to the Greater sun.



Eternal war - a way of evolution choosen by the Greater Sun. The races fight each other in grand cosmic war to determine which race is superior. Creation and destruction of forms is greatly increased during that process thus making the life obtain more experience. The Greater Sun recognizes this method as appropriate one, because even if forms are destroyed during the war, the life persists unchanged and just returns to its source.



Eternal travel.
The hearts constantly travel from one place to another, bringing life to the worlds and animating the space around it. But when the time comes, the heart leaves its world behind and continues its journey in search of a new experience.





Hope you didn't understand anything. Until next time.  Ninja
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2018, 06:18:15 AM »

Hello, friends.

Last week i completed something that no space game can live without.



A battlestation. Heavy armored, multi cannon, self repairing, almost impossible to destroy battlestation.
As a huge concentration of power, stations are good both for strategic and arcade modes,
appearing of a station in some point of space can dramatically change situation on the whole level.

Right now there are 3 kinds of stations in the game:

1. Explorers station - small outpost of certain race, which can give you missions or buy/sell stuff.

2. Tactical station - large station, which gives its owner race a major power boost in the surrounding area.

3. Acolyte station - station of acolyte race, which periodically spawns raiders squads.

Hope these battlestations will warm the heart of a lone traveller in the dark cold space.
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
PetSkull
Level 2
**


View Profile
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2018, 07:11:01 AM »

I really dig your world  Grin But then again, I'm a sucker for #procgen. Following this one for sure!
Logged

fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2018, 07:30:44 AM »

Hi there. Today i want to say a few more words about the living things in this game.
Since the races are not humanoid, they follow rather different laws of existence. There are 2 major kinds of beings - essences(pure lives) and elements(lives in form).

Essences are immortal and forms every race's core. They travel with the heart across the space(the heart is also an essence) and if you found an essence, it will stay with you until the game's end.


Guardian of the Dark race protects its sun. Guardian is the strongest essence in game.

Elements are the mix of solar life(light) and planet's matter. They are mortal beings, since their form is destructible. You can have a lot of elements on level, but they won't travel with you further than the level's end. The elements are being produced by planets imbued with planetary essence. Each planetary essence allows a planet to produce a certain type of elements by providing a scheme of merging life and matter. Created element is linked with its essence and allows it to collect experience via this element. When essence has enough of experience, it may update its level to increase parameters of newly created elements. The elements are basic units of each race's war machine.

There are few kinds of elements in game:

Leaf elements - basic units in game. Being small and weak they totally depend on their quantity in battle. Present the most part of every race's forces. Most of the time they just swarm around some planet and laze. Sometimes one of them can descend down to game needs and transport some cargo between two planets.


A group of leaf elements is wasting time near a planet.

Elemental - heavy war unit with multiple cores that can fire energy additionally to standart attack. A number of cores depends on essence's level so elementals are small and weak in the beginning of game(even struggling in fight with a single leaf element), but attain huge sizes(and an army's strength) by its end. In contrary to leaf element, elemental is kind of chaotic unit that brings uncertainty into the battlefield by doing a lot of aoe-attacks that are effective against large groups of enemies.


Dark elemental near the broken core.

Retranslator - defenceless unit, that can't attack at all, but has an important role in game since it can transport the sun's energy to distant planets. Without a retranslator no effective expansion can be achieved. Additionally it can create energy pathes between two planets, that significantly increases the unit's movespeed and energy flow between them. Retranslator is a main logistic unit.


Dark retranslator approaches a planet with planetary trees.


There are more unit types, but i'll save it for later. See ya.
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
PetSkull
Level 2
**


View Profile
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2018, 12:05:42 PM »

Maan, I adore your color schemes! Smiley And your procedural gen's, I'm a sucker for this myself Smiley
Logged

fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2018, 01:40:11 PM »

Quote
Maan, I adore your color schemes! And your procedural gen's, I'm a sucker for this myself
Hey, thank you for your support.
Actually, i'm a sucker for it either, i was just lucky enough to find a good combination of styles. My proc.gen simply puts some basic textures together to make one complex(Well, i think most of proc.gens doing the same thing Smiley).
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2018, 11:37:02 AM »

Greetings to everyone who reads text in the posts! Smiley

I spent a few days on improving gameplay of tactic battles.

I didn't explain anything about tactic battles before, so i do it now.

Since my main game has lack of tactics and battles go like 'swarm vs swarm' mode, i wanted to create
some opportunity for the player to test his skills in local tactic game if he get tired of main one.


No game can surpass its creator. Or can? The pc makes really dumb moves here...

I tried to make tactic battles more like a logic game than just plain 'brute force wins' way, so player
needs to maintain his formation, quickly maneuver and regroup his units, keeping rears free and searching weak spots in enemy formation in order to win in such battle. Actually, i wanted to make it resemble a Go game in some way(of course, i'm not that smart to succeed in that but i honestly tried Roll Eyes).


Oh, my beautiful red ships stay nice and clean while the pc is making a scrapyard out of his formation again.

The core gameplay looks like basic RPG mechanics - you have 3 basic types of units: Assaulter(damage dealer), Defender(tank) and Supporter(heal). Assaulter has a firepower, defender has armor(additionally forcing enemy units to attack him instead of allies), supporter can restore allies energy. So each unit has valuable role in battle.


I like 2D battles - they are easy to read. I'm totally losing in this one.


There are also some extended unit types:
   Barrier - prevents one enemy unit from firing and three from moving.
   Sniper - has double attack range but weak armor.
   Killer - cavalry unit - has double speed and high attack rate, but no armor at all.
   Rescuer - can instantly teleport heavily injured units from the front lines to his place.
   Commander - can summon new units on the battlefield, additionally grants a defense aura to all linked units
   

Ha ha, i won again. I'm the genius tactician. Oh, forgot i was playing on easy.


Levels(except for tutorials) are constructed in 'solving the problem' form - your units are divided into small groups and scattered all over the battlefield. So you need to gather your forces together before enemy could crush them separately. This method creates a lot of variety in gameplay and each battle process becomes a bit of unique.
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #13 on: March 22, 2018, 07:24:10 AM »

Hi.

  To extend variety of races in the game, i decided to add 'morph' races in game. Each morph race is a combination of two or more basic races. The advantage of morph race is that it can use the abilities of both parents, so morph races become very strong opponents. The only problem with morph races was their graphics, or, to be precise, its absence. Since i'm too lazy to make it all by my hands, i decided to write method that can morph two random images into one and use it to mix graphical forms of parent races.

It was not as easy as i thought, but i managed to make something that produces adequate results.


The difference from common morph algorithm is that this method does not require control points to be set thus it can be used automatically.


Flow/Crystal morph tree


Dark/Crystal morph tree

Not very bright way but still works for me Smiley
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
PetSkull
Level 2
**


View Profile
« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2018, 09:39:04 AM »

I think they look stunning!  Grin
Logged

fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2018, 12:49:58 PM »

Quote
I think they look stunning!
Hey, Skull. Gentleman Glad you like it. Seeing some feedback in the thread really motivates me a lot.
Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2018, 05:30:21 AM »

Hi.
I had a little pause posting progress here, but the development is alive and i plan to release the game this autumn.
For the last 2 months i did a lot of work polishing the gameplay, fixing bugs and fitting the game balance, so right now the game seems playable enough to me.

Also from now i'll start to post more gameplay videos and less text.
I apologize for the video's quality and lags - my pc is pretty old and writing videos in real time is hard job for him.

Just flying around my home system and taking part in small border conflict.


Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #17 on: July 17, 2018, 10:33:20 AM »

Greetings. The last month was spent for playing other games preparations for the new demo release.
And at last i published a new demo version(0.9.3) on
Itch.io:          https://fearless-donut.itch.io/aether-way   
and IndieDB:      https://www.indiedb.com/games/aether-way/downloads/aetherway0-9-3demo

Here is the new video - my first shaky steps into creating the game trailer. Well, at least this video does not lag as much as previous did.




Some (funny) info:
   - The latest task in this game's task list has a number 1824
   - The actual number of tasks is much bigger because i'm too lazy to give each of them a personal number. Once there was >400 tasks under the same number
   - I write all tasks in a single .txt file. Right now it has 8159 lines
   - I realized that after all that time i spent on testing and balancing, i can still play this game.

Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #18 on: August 13, 2018, 07:57:05 AM »

  While my brain was being melted by this hot summer, i added new concept into the game. My mind had multiple glitches because of overheat and i thought it'd be a nice idea crossing a dungeon crawler with a 4X space strategy Shocked. Easy deal. The only problem was how to transform a space into a dungeon.




   Just above the physical plane which is the bottom of the universe, the numerous aetheric planes lie. If an element 'dives' into an aetheric plane, it obtains the ability to interact with this plane's energies and the two worlds get mixed into one for this element, so he can stay both in physical and aetheric planes simultaneously. The element can't just jump between the aether planes, but there are points of space where two neighboring planes get closer together - these points are called Vortexes  and an unit can slip into the next plane in such point.
 



The planes:
1. Just after physical plane there is an Aether Stream - a huge network of thin aetheric lines. By moving in aether stream, a unit's speed is increased, and he can get into any point of space in no time.

2. Above the streams, there are few aetheric planes, that are called Seas.
  The first sea is 'Sea of Levity' - small islands of aetheric matter are surrounded by emptiness. Constant rain makes it difficult to cross this sea and an element should hide besides aether crystals to avoid the rain.
  After a 'Sea of Levity', the 'Sea of Stability' lies. This sea is huge and consists mostly of aether crystals so a player must break its way through this sea by using force.
  The 'Sea of Vanity' constantly restores itself and making through it would be troublesome, and the last sea - 'Sea of repose' is a home for some celestial life, that will play its role in the game's scenario.

3. Above the seas, the Abyss plane lies. It's the last aetheric plane and it has its own secret.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2018, 08:03:11 AM by fearless_donut » Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
fearless_donut
Level 0
***


View Profile
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2018, 05:08:45 AM »

Hi.
At last i've managed to create a simple scenario. Cool
Right now it has only 5 missions, but i'll add more in future. In this scenario the player will be helping a creature named Ardu in search of his artifacts. There'll be both exploration and fighting missions and they won't be easy. The main intention was to let the player meet the game's world more closely and give him some extended hints. Hope it will be fun.



Besides, there are other minor improvements, like improved planetary trees' graphic, improved fighting dynamic, simple particle system for visual effects and a lot of background work.

Logged

My devlog - Aether Way
And Twitter
Pages: [1] 2
Print
Jump to:  

Theme orange-lt created by panic