Stellar Flux - Firefly/Battlestar inspired space game

  • Hello. So I am making a space game now =) Those are not photoshop but screenshots from the game. The name of the game is yet to be decided. Its very early in development.

    (click the pictures to enlarge)

    Now, what's the game about? Lets make it TL;DR:

    -Space exploration.

    -Landing and flying around on planets surface.

    -Mining various resources from asteroids, gas clouds and crystals.

    -Fighting enemy spaceships.

    -Boarding shipwrecks and derelicts in a Space Hulk style.

    -Captain who gains experience in a RPG fashion.

    -Your Mothership and everything can be upgraded and expanded.

    -Researching and building new technologies.

    -Random Encounters based on choices and actions like in adventure games.

    -Artifacts with unique proprieties.

    -Rich and multilayered story.

    -Beautiful space environment.

    Ever wondered how Admiral Adama from Battlestar Galactica felt? Now you will have the chance...

    You like what you read? Stay tuned for more!

    https://www.facebook.com/DroneLockerOfficial

  • Update 3

    Added Planets and shadow casting. Check the 3rd picture.

  • Looking nice, concept seems interesting.

    What I find if I focus too much on the graphics at the beginning, I get side tracked and dont have enough steam left to focus on the core mechanics. Curious how are you coping with this?

  • Looking nice, concept seems interesting.

    What I find if I focus too much on the graphics at the beginning, I get side tracked and dont have enough steam left to focus on the core mechanics. Curious how are you coping with this?

    Oh I had that too, even worse.

    If I started coding first and used only placeholders as graphics - I got burned out, because with shitty graphics I couldn't post any screenshots of my game and get some feedback or fuel.

    If I went with graphics first and did most of them or all - then the jump from graphics to code was... ouch. I am a way better graphics artist then coder. So it was always like jumping from hot to cold water. A shock.

    The solution that works me was going the "professional way". Basically - game Script. But not just the pitch or idea or overview. A WHOLE, detailed script.

    So the storyline written down from start to finish. All quests and side quests. All stats, attributes and formulas of EVERYTHING. All skills, skill tree. All artifacts with their usage, description. All variables. Every weapons, every system, every device, every ship, every race, every object. All the minigames from bottom - up. Everything that can be written - written. Everything text. Like a movie script.

    Once I finish that - I just follow the lead of it. Unchecking the things I've done and finished. Moving to the next stage. Basically sticking to the plan. After the Script is finished - I work on Final graphics and code at the same time. It takes more stamina and time but yields shinny results faster. This way I can post "Go-Ready" content of the game more often. And even if shit hits the fan and I would find myself unable to finish the game - I still can sell the detailed script. At the moment the script is 49 pages long. In Ms Word. Font 14

  • irbis

    Sounds like you are serious in regards to your game plans Awesome.

    Writing things down is a good idea, so have I noted brief bullet points to what I intend on doing, but I am stuck at the moment with custom collisions using only events and not behaviours (as I too am more into graphics than coding) which is basically core mechanics. Hopefully once I get that done, I can work on all the rest.

    From what you have written you are really motivated which is really great, 49 pages, that is some serious work right there.

    Do you have any milestones set in regards to loose dates?

  • irbis

    Sounds like you are serious in regards to your game plans Awesome.

    Writing things down is a good idea, so have I noted brief bullet points to what I intend on doing, but I am stuck at the moment with custom collisions using only events and not behaviors (as I too am more into graphics than coding) which is basically core mechanics. Hopefully once I get that done, I can work on all the rest.

    From what you have written you are really motivated which is really great, 49 pages, that is some serious work right there.

    Do you have any milestones set in regards to loose dates?

    Very. Solomon, I'll be honest with you here. I am in gamedev for about a decade right now. From 5 years working alone. I always wanted to make space game. But something always came into my way and stopped me from finishing. Always. Each game was centered around different things. So now, after all those years, I started making another space game. But it was initially planed to be small and idle hehe. So I've made the first graphics for the ingame and... Something happened...

    Did you ever fallen in love? It was something like that. Something that, sadly, I've experienced very long time ago and never felt again. I started looking at my game. Like God beholding his new born universe. Surprised and stunned by its beauty. I've been staring at this asking myself - "I did this? Really...?". It really did not felt like my own creation. It was/is too good. It hits all the right notes.

    And really believe me - this isn't usual for me. Of course, like any Dev out there I am also driven by passion and imagination, but as a 31yo father and husband - I have no other choice but to include some business thinking in my agenda. So before I start making a new game I always try to estimate how much eventual money it might earn me. But not this time. That's why I've said about this "falling in love", because...

    I, fallen in love. With this game. I want to play it. I want to finish it sooo badly. I don't know why. Its not reasonable. I have no rational arguments "why". Its like it WANTS to be MADE. It feels like I am possessed. And I understand that this might sound like some loony talking. I am fully aware of it. But it just feels soooo good and warm. So I am not asking any troublesome questions, I am just doing it. Dang, I am starting to sound like Gollumn ROTFL. "My precious..." lol.

    Well, cutting off the bullshit - I am gonna finish this little gem. Whatever it takes.

    About the collisions - I can understand. C2 collisions kind of suck. I can imagine how much struggle you are going through. But on the bright side - I think its good you are not using behaviors. They are good for simply games and things but for anything beyond the template - they will give you more headache then relief.

    About the 49 pages script - I've just noticed its actually 52 lol.

    About the date and time - that's a damn good question. In most cases, because I am running a business and I have a family, I always set some deadlines. Some milestones. But not in this case. I want to avoid tainting this project with rush or/and pressure. I want it to bloom and grow on its own pace. Because I am making this more for myself - rather then eventual players. And because most of the stuff in game is either procedurally generated or randomized - I will be able to play my own game and also get surprised. And I must say, that the sole fact that I did not set a date - already is doing wonders. But its not like I am slacking or being lazy. Quite the opposite. Never before I've been SOOO motivated and inspired.

  • Some more spaceporn =) Planets + Shadow casting system.

  • Hey buddy,

    Glad to see you had your doubts about making a space game cleared, because it is quite irrational to worry about all the other space games out there... just focus on yours, make it unique, make it your take on the genre and it will stand on its own merits.

    My feedback, the art is good, but the nebulas may be too bright for your eventual spaceships to stand out. Have you got some place holder spaceships to test?

    If you've played the game Void Expanse, you'll know what I refer to, as it's nebulas are very bright and distracting from the ship combat. They added an option to lower it BG brightness and that helped.

    Good luck!

  • Hey buddy,

    Glad to see you had your doubts about making a space game cleared, because it is quite irrational to worry about all the other space games out there... just focus on yours, make it unique, make it your take on the genre and it will stand on its own merits.

    My feedback, the art is good, but the nebulas may be too bright for your eventual spaceships to stand out. Have you got some place holder spaceships to test?

    If you've played the game Void Expanse, you'll know what I refer to, as it's nebulas are very bright and distracting from the ship combat. They added an option to lower it BG brightness and that helped.

    Good luck!

    Oh hiii Huy! I wanted to tag you here but forgotten your nickname.

    Listen up - whoever is reading this topic.

    I would like to say, that this man over here, Silverforce played a MAJOR role that anybody can see any of those pics. His words inspired me and put back in one piece. Thank you Huy!!!!!

    As for the ships and stuff - I have most of the graphics done. Its mostly a matter of plugging them in and making spin. The scenery is for the looks and awe. But the moment you want to move around it fades to black a bit and strategic grid pops up. Remember the game Heagemony? One of my favs! In most games you always have to struggle between something that looks good - and plays good. And in most cases what looks good - doesn't play as such, and the other way around. But... Why not to have both?

    Hegemony is one of the more famous games using this method. You have a beautiful 3d scenery to look around and get into role. This view is not very informative but great to watch space battles and stuff (as long as you don't have to keep your thumbs on the triggers). But you also has a Tactical-map view, where all the 3d graphics are hidden and its all about readable interface with all the data you would need and find useful. Same here but I also offer a middle ground between those two. You have view #1 which is those vistas, and view #2 which is pure info BUT! - everything is turnable. You can switch on/off everything, and weave your view to whatever suits you best.

    Additionally - every part of the game, leave alone pure traveling in space - has its own sub-game. I don't want to spoil the surprise but its like having around 6 games in one. The thing visible on those screenshots is only one of many modules. As an example, you know a game called Milenium? Its an old strategy game. And in most cases it was heavily UI/Map based strategy. But when the aliens attack you - the game turned into x-wing clone! And that's what I am talking about here. Or another example, "Deathwar 3030" when in most cases you fly around like SPAZ or Star Control but any Station interactions are made in a point'n'click Adventure style, where you walk around and talk to characters.

    I am doing something similar. Flying in space - one game. Combat? Another one. Mining resources? Another. Exploring derelicts? Yet another. Planetary exploration? Same Every module is unique and practically as standalone game - within a game. It might sound ambitious and over my head but I've actually did something like that before and I know how to pull it off.

    I am gonna eat the cookie and have the cookie.

  • I will watch this clowely for sure. But hey, looks like a lot of devs are doing this kind of game lately. Me too.

  • Love the look and feel of this game. And the idea of many gameplay mechanics and ideas in one games (if pulled off well) is fantastic!

  • I will watch this clowely for sure. But hey, looks like a lot of devs are doing this kind of game lately. Me too.

    Thank you Mike! I am honored! About the game genre - that's what I was very afraid of. But thx to Silverforce I've man up and decided to defend my ground. Specially because... I have something to offer which was offered never before... But I am keeping this secret until later stages of development. People are very various. I know couple of devs who took someone else idea and made it their own. I am not saying bad about our gamedev community, just the few rotten apples. I am very aware that I am just one guy. Any gamedev studio with even minimal experience can easily outrun me if they would have the script. So I am actually trying to stay low profile for now. At least till I will be far away enough - so no one will be able to catch up to me.

    Love the look and feel of this game. And the idea of many gameplay mechanics and ideas in one games (if pulled off well) is fantastic!

    Glad you share this love with me (no homo!)

    You know, space - the real one - is boring. BBE - Big Black Empty (Catchy name for a game btw lol). With light dots here and there. It has its charm but It doesn't really feels interesting. That's why I want to make MY space to be colorful, moving, bursting with life. Shooting stars flying left and right., Nebulas slowly drifting, suns and stars pulsing in their cosmic heart beat, distant galaxies twisting in distance, black holes spinning and devouring space and time, unknown creatures flying from one planet to another, stranded asteroids and comets zapping across the screen, distant stars twinkling across the galaxy...

    I want it to be majestic. I want the player to stop the game and just stare at the screen in awe, asking himself "why the real world universe doesn't look as beautiful?!". I want to compete with the God. Or should I say... Uncover and unravel... What's there already but hidden from our mortal, human eyes.

    So far there are 7 game modules:

    -Space exploration and flight

    -Being on board of derelict ships or shipwrecks

    -Planets surface exploration

    -Resources mining

    -Combat

    -Random Events

    -Walking around board of your ship

    I would like to add more, but for now - this is the core, the spine.

    Each one of above is an unique and independent game on its own, capable of being a standalone game. Just to hint what I have in mind:

    Ship boarding and exploration is a top down team shooter (Kind a like Alien Breed + Cannon Fodder mixed together) and random events are dialog/choice based, like in Faster Then Light. Picture + description of the situation + X number of choices.

    I love diversity in games. And I am making this game to appeal to my tastes. I want for the player to ALWAYS have something else to do, when he'll get feed up with the current tasks. I am not saying I am inventing something brand new, no. The ingredients are old and well known. But the blend, the mixture is something never done before. At least - not in one package.

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  • New delivery. Lets see what Santa brought this year!~

    Black Holes? Checked!

    Pulsars.? Coming right up!

    Next stop: Asteroids/Crystals/Gas Clouds

  • Graphics look nice. Adopting the script (Game Design Document) approach is good to keep you focused on what you started - you can always modify it as your game progresses if you need to.

  • Graphics look nice. Adopting the script (Game Design Document) approach is good to keep you focused on what you started - you can always modify it as your game progresses if you need to.

    Thank you Phaze!

    Kudos till then!

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