Empire in the Sky is an independently developed PC video game set in a stylized 1960s-1980s retro cartoon universe with blatant and extensive references to NASA and other "Space Race" icons. Much of the data is modeled after real life, so you might even learn something! This is the "lava lamp" of space RPG shooters! Travel the cosmos in a fully customizable spacecraft -- designed by you (or us). Fight or befriend scores of alien civilizations in your quest to rule the cosmos, while exploring a rich, procedurally generated world that includes planets, planetary bases, towns, cities and starbases. Build a nearly limitless and vast empire that stretches across hundreds of star systems, on thousands of planets! Empire in the Sky optionally lets you build your own starbases and planetary bases, and enhance your designs by crafting individual spacecraft parts.

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Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Empire in the Sky Development Paused

0 comments by LostAstronaut on Apr 22nd, 2013

With sadness I am here to announce a temporary, indefinite pause to the development of Empire in the Sky. The game will be made one day, but we're not sure when. There were a couple of factors in this decision, and I want to say that no one is less happy about this than myself.

It took 7 years to build up enough source code to get the demo of Lost Astronaut's Empire in the Sky out the door. I started it alone, and since then over two dozen people have come to help the project, largely for free, and I paid actors out of my own pocket with limited funding. I purchased thousands of dollars in audio and 3D models to produce Empire in the Sky, and I have as yet to make a single dime from development of this game. Things were looking up for the project: I have a working demo that seems to be stable on a wide number of Windows 7 machines. This in itself is a major accomplishment considering how many companies have turned away from this kind of development toolset.

For those indie game developers who are reading this, let me tell you a bit about my experiences. For one, I developed it entirely using OpenGL, and I had only a limited intent of developing for iOS. iOS came about year 3 of the project and 7 years ago Minecraft hadn't happened yet. Nor had we seen Terraria. I feel this space is getting crowded. At the time I started the Indie movement had all but died out.

It was only through intense self-discipline that I was able to write the 300,000 lines of code and 1800 C++ classes that go into Empire in the Sky's core offering. I began writing a C program to "make a quick game in 6 months just for fun", and as I moved through various libraries and development platforms, I found myself putting a lot of effort into Windows / Linux, and specifically the Microsoft Visual Studio platform. It takes roughly 12 minutes to compile Empire in the Sky from scratch. When I started it took about 1 second. This makes working on the game enormously frustrating.

We will return to this game one day, and it will be published!

All is not lost, however, as experts at the aforementioned big tech giant have extended a hand to Lost Astronaut. However, wheels turn slowly there and I'm left with a big question mark as to when we will be back at full steam on this project. So, in the meantime, I've left behind this enormous undertaking to focus on a simpler, easier to develop product prequel called Fringes of the Empire. While we will still be devoting some effort to the Empire in the Sky project, we'll be spending the bulk of our time pushing forward the cross-platform prequel.

I have started porting it to Code::Blocks, but there are months of improvements that must be explored to port it to the Linux and GCC platform. This means more setbacks to a game that is still only 60% complete.

Thank you so much to those who have supported us up until now. Please continue to raise awareness of Lost Astronaut Studios and the Empire in the Sky series of games. I want so very much to publish and I think Fringes of the Empire will be a great sci-fi RPG that stands on its own, even if it isn't developed in the grandeous and procedural way that Empire in the Sky is.

Yours,

Herbert Elwood Gilliland III
Lost Astronaut Studios

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Post comment Comments  (0 - 10 of 12)
zgrillo2004
zgrillo2004 Sep 14 2013, 4:27am says:

I suggest giving this guy a kickstart campaign. he needs the money to keep developing this game

+1 vote     reply to comment
LostAstronaut Creator
LostAstronaut Sep 25 2013, 12:59am replied:

hey thanks for your support. i did try a kickstarter campaign but it was back in 2010. I received a total of $10 from my one friend =D .. 2 people have bought the full version ($29.95), but a few pizzas doesn't really free me up to do much, and this game is now becoming niche (Windows only, maybe one day a Linux port). I'd still love to finish it -- but without funding it will have to sit on the backburner for a while. I am working on another one called Fringes of the Empire, which is for Mac/Windows and will possibly have mobile versions. It is not as procedural, but still has some of the charm of this game.

+1 vote   reply to comment
Insolent.
Insolent. Aug 3 2012, 9:38am says:

Ooh, will download this when I get home from work!

Speaking of which... back to work!

+3 votes     reply to comment
explorer13
explorer13 Jul 12 2012, 4:02am says:

The creation system reminds me so much of the concept for Thrive's system, which is awesome. I second Insolent, now tracking. :]

+3 votes     reply to comment
LostAstronaut Creator
LostAstronaut Jul 20 2012, 6:38pm replied:

thanks! please help raise awareness of the project

+2 votes   reply to comment
raeldrikp
raeldrikp Jun 29 2012, 10:32pm says:

odd...., but i love what i see so far. trackingXD

+3 votes     reply to comment
LostAstronaut Creator
LostAstronaut Jun 30 2012, 2:05am replied:

Thanks!

+2 votes   reply to comment
Insolent.
Insolent. May 30 2012, 1:12pm says:

You know, "The King of Infinite Space" or "Kings of Infinite Space" would be a cool title for this game too!

+3 votes     reply to comment
LostAstronaut Creator
LostAstronaut Jun 3 2012, 2:11pm replied:

Yes, the line from Hamlet is perfect and was discovered early on while searching for inspiration for the game. However, we don't want to be too gender biased! =D One of our voice actresses really enjoys making purple space ships.

+4 votes   reply to comment
TooMiserable
TooMiserable Jun 29 2012, 9:22am replied:

I won't berate you for that decision, as much as I disagree with you. Instead I'll offer an alternative.

Change king to monarch. It'd still be a reference, and wouldn't be quite as gender specific.

+3 votes     reply to comment
LostAstronaut Creator
LostAstronaut Jun 29 2012, 10:19am replied:

Molest Shakespeare? Never! Well, the game is called Empire in the Sky, but yeah I see what you are saying. Thanks for the comment.

+3 votes   reply to comment
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Empire in the Sky
Platform
Windows
Developer & Publisher
Lost Astronaut Studios
Engine
Custom Built
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Empireinthesky.com
Release Date
Released Aug 14, 2012
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