June 16, 2011
So finally got to the design! And now I’m super rushed so I really don’t have as much time as I’d like so I’m just figuring it out as I go. I scrapped the cool vector/neon over realism feel I had in my initial mockups since it requires a lot more precise design and because I have many fewer screen elements in the current version of the game (no weapons, navigation, etc). Maybe in future versions I can go back to that but for the moment I’ve gone with something easy and that I know: grungy Sci-fi a la Gears of War. Looks good but I’ve never been a fan of games that go for the “realistic” look on these small platforms since they never come across very well (with rare exceptions of course). But again, doing anything else would require more time on my part to develop and implement a style. Maybe some day in the future.
Here’s a video showing how it functions and some pics so you can actually see it, damn camera! However, I found that turning the FPS to 15 decreased that annoying flicker. Cheers!
As for the back story I mentioned in the above video here it is roughly:
Your home planet, cradle to a great and advanced civilization, has developed a method for getting unlimited energy from its Sun by harvesting it directly from the star itself! However, no one knew that that such cannibalism carried a heavy cost. After centuries of this practice and a rocketing population, your sun is beginning to behave strangely, affecting the environment on the planets in your capital system. Not to mention the increased solar flare activity which has been rocketing the many large orbiting satellite colonies in the system.
You are the vanguard of an effort to stop this runaway disaster. As part of a fleet of sun-eating ships, it is your job to clear away all the planets in the target systems so that the other larger sun-eaters can siphon energy off of the stars for your home system. The sun-eating tech requires a lot of room and no disturbance, so the planets must be demolished or, better yet, fed to their star. However, the sun-eaters are still many lightyears away. Your simply clearing a path on orders. Parked in deep orbit in each system’s Oort cloud (that’s the cloud of asteroids and crap in deep orbit around our Sun), you gather the detritus of each system’s ancient birth and hurl them with unimaginable force at each planet to destroy each, one by one. When your work is done, you move on to the next system, never questioning your orders.
Little do you know your mission was compromised decades ago as time sped by as you flew from your home, faster than light…relativity’s a bitch. Something sinister is at work, the only evidence; dust and dead suns.
I like this story arc though I doubt I’ll be able to work it into this early version of the game. However, it’s great since sequels could easily involve the other major ships: the Sun-Eaters (in this one your a Sun-Smasher obviously), combat and more. God I love my imagination sometimes, I go very cool places!