In MetaSpace you are a captain sent to explore the unknown but not only will you have to command the vessel, you must build it aswell. Items are randomly generated allowing you to swap parts such as weapons and engines to create your own vessel perfectly designed for the hazards you may face. Systems and Events are also randomly generated so no two games will ever be the same. As your armory of equipment expands and your crew becomes more proficient you will find yourself delving deeper and deeper into danager, so build your ship and manage your crew wisely to brave the depths of MetaSpace.
Ok... so it's been almost a year since the last post, so what happened? I realized that MetaSpace required a lot more work and time then I expected and at that time a year ago the game was no where near where It needed to be for me to start sharing information and content. Well now i'm back and ready and MetaSpace is a very different game. I deleted all of the old screenshots and news articles to avoid confusion so basically it's a fresh start for the game.
MetaSpace is about building a ship, managing a crew and exploring the unknown. Almost everything in MetaSpace is randomly generated to give you a fresh experience every time you play. This means there are millions of items including weapons, shields, engines etc. The events and encounters are randomly generated as well as the systems you explore. Ultimately MetaSpace is a game of progression. Earning achievements, getting loot and defeating bosses to advance further into the depths of MetaSpace and upgrade your ship to be stronger and more powerful. Larger ships will allow you to construct a hanger on them allowing you to have multiple ships in your convoy making the combat even more tactical.
As you travel from planet to planet you will encounter random events. These could be anything from pirates, distress calls, trade offers, anomalies or even an internal ship event such as a crew member going rouge. Depending on how you built your ship you will be able to deal successfully with a wider array of events and may have more choices in your approach to certain situations. For example an enemy ship may be hiding cloaked waiting to ambush you. If when you built your ship you equipped it with a scanner capable of detecting the enemy you will stand a much better chance at winning the engagement.
So there's some very quick and basic information about the game now i'll just talk about the system generation a little bit and we'll leave it there for now.
MetaSpace randomly generates systems, so how exactly are the systems generated. I'm sure a few people out there are interested in doing something similar with Game Maker Studio so i'll give a quick rundown on how this is accomplished.
First the stars background is drawn and then various starfields are drawn above. Using the irandom_range function we can get a random number between two values, depending on the number will change the amount of starfield objects we create. These objects when created will randomize there size, angle and the starfield sprite that they use. Now the stars in the background will vary.
Next MetaSpace uses a sort of colored cloud or dust effect so we randomly choose one of the nineteen different colored background and draw 2 slightly different looking versions of it on top of one another. This way we can make one of the dust layers move faster then the other to create a sort of parallax or scrolling effect to make the background looks more dynamic.
Next we generate meteors, "darkspots" and asteroids. A system only has a 1 in 8 chance of not having any meteors in it, if it does have meteors in it then it is assigned a meteor density value between 3 and 25. The lower the number the more meteors will hurl past in the background. Asteroids are done in a very similar manner all systems. Now every system has asteroids in the background though the amount varies greatly. Again a density value is assigned this time between 12 and 50 and the background is populated with asteroids accordingly. The size, angle and sprite of the asteroid is randomized upon its creation. Finally the "darkspots" as I like to refer to them. These are basically just static black clouds which are randomly drawn in the system.
And finally the background suns, nebulae and planets. Nebulae are assigned are random color, size, angle and sprite. Some systems may have no nebulae some may have 3. They are assigned random positions in the system and after they are created certain nebulae will create another instance which will draw a glowing effect over it. The glowing effect is also effected by the nebula's color and size. Next suns are generated in the background. Nothing fancy here they are just given one of seven colors and a slight variance in size, then randomly positioned in the background. Finally planets. Like nebulae they are given a random size, position, sprite and color. Though unlike nebulae they are told to not overlap with any other planet. After all you will have to click on the planet to tell your ship to travel there. The planets are drawn behind the 2nd layer of colored dust so it better fits in with its surroundings and its appearance is affected by that systems particular features. So here's the image of a partial fully generated system!
If you want to see it better I've uploaded screenshots of a couple of randomly generated systems. Well that's it for now, I won't be dissapearing for a year again. Follow me on twitter (@mowcno) for more regular updates and look out soon for a news article about the ship designer.
@RonimoGames Can't tell if you're just saying good morning (a bit late) or this is some cryptic teaser.
Feb 27 2014, 6:11am by mowcno
Just uploaded a screenshot of the Ship Designer and also a quick peak at the combat engine I've been working on.
Feb 26 2014, 7:19am by mowcno
... and crashed windows explorer too all in one go. I don't even....
Feb 25 2014, 8:02am by mowcno
Somehow I just accidentally closed T.co and set the image I was working on as my desktop background at the same time.
Feb 25 2014, 8:00am by mowcno
Worked a bit on the system generation again, changing it depending on how far you've traveled.
Feb 24 2014, 12:34pm by mowcno
If you have the winning move then play it instead of hovering over your cards for the entire turn pretending you don't have Pyroblast.
Feb 24 2014, 12:05pm by mowcno
Amazing how I can get more annoyed at my opponent in Hearthstone then any other game when they can't even speak.
Feb 24 2014, 12:05pm by mowcno
@JesseCox confirmed wannabee cannibal
Feb 22 2014, 3:11pm by mowcno
Generated systems are now four times larger and still generate instantly!
Feb 22 2014, 11:38am by mowcno
Increasing the size of the systems generated and adding view controls.
Feb 22 2014, 10:55am by mowcno