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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsStartron - The procedural ASCII space sandbox!
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Rogod
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« on: June 29, 2020, 01:24:18 PM »

Startron
Hi all, it's been a while. Here is Startron Gomez


  • The cosmos has a way to go yet, but we're hurriedly trying to get it ready for everybody!

  • We've got planets and suns! And space stations with funny shaped windows! Oh and you can set up mines that feed into refineries and factories for your amusement if you're into that kinda thing...

  • Not much works yet, and there'll be lots of bugs (those little guys will either crash your game or corrupt the cosmos beyond repair Screamy) but we've got a video with how things are right now:

  • Here are some screenshots too :3

  • Download links to the latest version (and old versions) can always be found here (There's usually a new one every couple of days or so)

  • Full details and the Startron cosmic database can be found here (Even the website's a work in progress Big Laff)

About
Startron is a procedurally generated space sandbox game written in C# (although I may switch to Java because I'm more comfortable with it and .net is doing my head in) using mainly* codepage 437 for graphics.

The concept of Startron was inspired by Dwarf Fortress, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Factorio, No Man's Sky & Rimworld.

The graphics style is an arbitrary restriction to invoke creativity (seems to be working for me so far).
Please bear with me while I get the ball rolling on all this - I am just a dude making a happy game and a website to go along with it. Smiley

* I had to steal the ω and © characters otherwise things were gonna look really shonky

FAQ
Q: Do you want help?
A: No thanks Smiley This is my own little venture (unless I have some drastic technical hurdle I can't overcome because .net hates me)

Q: Will this be multiplayer eventually?
A: I highly doubt it; the direction I intend to move the project does not lend itself to that playstyle

Q: Will you ever upgrade the graphics?
A: The furthest I am likely to go with the graphics is an optional sprite mode where every character just draws a little 16x16 picture instead but this is a nice-to-have for much further down the line and I intend to fully support the current text-based graphics engine for the whole project
« Last Edit: July 10, 2020, 01:15:32 AM by Rogod » Logged

Rogod
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« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2020, 02:10:52 PM »

Update v0.25
Roads & wires look a little better now Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Automation is now a little more functional; you can collect resources from the entity now (although there is no off-screen processing yet)

  • You can build on asteroids now!

  • Roads and wires connect up to appropriate buildings when placed, although they don't functionally do anything yet Smiley

    Here's a diagram to help illustrate what's going on down there: (this'll all be added to the cosmic database found in space stations for in-game reference later)

  • Building at the edges of entities should be less crash-prone now

  • You spawn closer to the centre of systems now so it's less confusing
    (You also spawn in a regular place on entities now, rather than just wherever off in space you were last time)

  • Extractors now work! (So you can get at those liquid/gas canisters I know everybody was missing :3 )

Download links as usual can be found here
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bugboss
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« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2020, 02:55:42 PM »

Love the aesthetics! I think it's a very promising concept. Keep up the good work!
Also: C# and .NET are great! You should stick to them  Corny Laugh (just kidding! Always go for what feels right for you)
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JobLeonard
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« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2020, 03:44:56 PM »

What is this? What is happening? Who, Me?

Where can I get more?  Kiss
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Rogod
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« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2020, 10:07:20 AM »

Glad you guys are fans! - I was worried the concept was a little obsolete NinjaHand Joystick


Update v0.26
Now maybe you can play too! Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Made sure it squishes your window down if it's going to clip your screen size (rather than just crash) - it'll prompt you on the main menu if this has happened - no gameplay should be affected, you'll just see a few less lines

  • Fleshed out the database a bit more - now it actually contains useful information :3

Download links as usual can be found here
« Last Edit: July 01, 2020, 12:34:13 PM by Rogod » Logged

bugboss
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« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2020, 02:59:18 PM »

Got to play tonight and I must say it's looking great and has lots of potential! Really liked how the navigation between systems works, the switching between views and the objects looks.

Some minor feedback I'd like to give (please, be advised that I have no experience with similar titles of this genre):


UI/Navigation

  • I felt a bit lost with the craft system. I'm not sure if I missed, but I didn't know what key to press to switch between crafting options.
  • I miss some visual feedback from my collecting and mining actions.
  • Hitting "space" key on a planet/object draws a red character on the former. I'm not sure what I should do with it. I suppose it's to engrave something on the planet? Ninja

Minor Bugs

  • On the main screen, if you press and hold "G" for generate the game crashes. Well it's not a big deal, but it's there  Who, Me?

Keep up the good work!
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Rogod
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« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2020, 12:48:01 AM »

Awesome - glad you managed to get it up and running!

To address your points:
  • You need to use Ctrl+Up or Ctrl+Down to change what to build - I'm not surprised you felt lost with the building system on entities - I've only just added it and haven't added the quality-of-life prompts and key-highlights for it yet as there are still mechanics I need to implement (like roads and wires doing things) plus there are some graphical niggles I need to invest time in before it solidifies. Also it's worth noting that unlimited-building is switched on at the moment so no resources are required to build anything and nothing's being taken out of your inventory unless you sell it at a station (this can be toggled off on the main menu (with U) for the moment, but will presumably stunt a new cosmos as you won't be able to start building most of the things you need)
  • Collecting and mining will become more apparent later, don't worry Smiley
  • Hitting space will just be building whatever's selected in the build menu (presumably even if it's not open) so this can be fixed up later. - It sounds like you were just building roads :3

  • I will address the generation-spam (it's probably crashing from saving a file so many times and clearly this needs throttled).

Ta :D
« Last Edit: July 03, 2020, 03:33:01 PM by Rogod » Logged

Rogod
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« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2020, 04:34:57 PM »

Update v0.27
Improved everyone's quality of life! Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Added a messaging system for warnings and general building info as well as when you receive resources from mining or collecting from storage yards

  • Added build menu instructions

  • Throttled cosmos generation so it can't be spammed (even accidentally) to cause any harm

Download links as usual can be found here
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Rogod
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« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2020, 03:29:48 PM »

Update v0.28
Limited power! Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Made sure buildings have to be hooked up to wires and roads to function (the specifications for all this will be added to the cosmic database eventually :D)

  • Made sure you can now deconstruct things when you make a mistake Tongue

  • Improved the new game experience and added a title credit animation

  • Lithrogen now generates in bigger splodges (supposed to be rivers and seas but we'll fix that up later :3 )

  • Tidied up some of the code around here

We'll probably be turning off the unlimited building mode in the next version so purchasing from stations gameplay is relevant - stay tuned for that!

Download links as usual can be found here
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bacon
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« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2020, 07:39:50 AM »

This looks amazing and like it has so much potential. It's amazing to me nothing(?) like this has been done before?? Super excited to watch this develop!
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CANTATA
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« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2020, 12:48:04 PM »

Thanks Bacon - the closest thing is probably Dwarf Fortress - but Cantata definitely beats the pants off Startron for complexity and polish - keep it up :D
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bacon
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« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2020, 02:46:31 PM »

Thanks Bacon - the closest thing is probably Dwarf Fortress - but Cantata definitely beats the pants off Startron for complexity and polish - keep it up :D

That's what checks notes Shocked ...4 years of work will do haha. But thank you! 
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CANTATA
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