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Imagine a game world with hundreds of stars, thousands of planets and asteroids, new colonies, huge empires and -- you. A tiny little company, owning a few ships, barely enough money to buy fuel for your next jump. What would you do?

Would you try your luck in one of the asteroid fields mining for rare ores? Would you sell your ships, your cargo and everything else to start trading in one of the large trading hubs? Would you want to become a respected designer of modern space ships? Or would you do anything to become the leader of one of the large corporations to scheme plans on how to wage trade wars against your enemies? Whatever you decide to do, it will leave a mark in the persistent world of Prosperous Universe and have consequences for you and everyone else.

Prosperous Universe is massively browser-based online game where everyone plays in the same world. No shards, no different servers, no restarts. One universe.

While the focus of Prosperous Universe lies on the economic part, there will be a military component as well. Conflicts will not be about destroying everything your opponent owns, though: They take place as part of a high-level meta game that’s about taking control over certain orbital or planetary structures, allowing you to influence planets, markets and taxes.

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Development Log Week 108

News

If we had to name one defining thing that makes Prosperous Universe what it is, the thing that determines game feel, pacing and a player’s progression in the game world, we’d have to say this was the Material Tree. And with most core features of the Early Access release candidate being in the game, the material tree is our primary focus at the moment.

This time we deviate from our usual devlog format a bit. The simple reason: Michi was at simulogics HQ again and we spent the days (mostly) locked in a room together, staring at a whiteboard and pondering over the material tree. Before we start putting in the high-level meta gameplay features during the Early Access phase, any sense of progression in the game is rooted in the material tree. Therefore it has to tick quite a few boxes:

  • The lower-level materials needs to be easy enough to produce that the economy can more or less bootstrap itself.
  • Especially for new players, the early production chains must work quick enough to give the players “something to do” during their first hours and days in the game.
  • There shouldn’t be major imbalances giving players an advantage or a disadvantage from the get-go by simply choosing a certain starting profile.
  • There needs to be clear progression, making higher-level materials increasingly more costly to produce and late-game supply chains difficult to master.
  • The tree needs to set incentives to explore the game world and to start and grow colonies beyond the initial systems.
  • All materials should match the particular flavor of sci-fi we envisioned for the game, which means no over-the-top techno-babble but also not 1:1 realism.

Tech-trees are the bread & butter of game designers out there. But add the fact that PU needs many hundreds of materials to work properly to the already quite extensive list above and you start to see the challenge we’re facing: Balancing this beast and keeping it in line with all our requirements is tricky, to say the least.

Obviously, we didn’t solve the issue over the few days we got to spend together this week, but I think we at least have a few ideas on how to tackle this problem. I am pretty sure you will read a lot more about it over the coming weeks or - if you are part of our alpha test program - you might actually experience the first results first-hand. If you want to become a part of said program, make sure to join the forums and let us know!

Last but not least: The voting for the IndieDB indie-of-the-year competition is open for a few more hours! Please help us out and cast your vote for Prosperous Universe!

Development Log Week 107

Development Log Week 107

News

Just like that it’s December and the new year is approaching quickly. While Michi continues adding depth to the base building feature, Martin is hard...

Development Log Week 106

Development Log Week 106

News

Our third alpha test has started and is focusing on space flight and trading between two colonies. Meanwhile Martin has started implementing the new payment...

Development Log Week 105

Development Log Week 105

News

While Michi is knee-deep in preparations for the next round of closed alpha tests, Martin got started on the rather boring topic of real-world payment...

Development Log Week 104

Development Log Week 104

News

We continue to follow our testing schedule and just like that, our second closed alpha test has already officially passed. Meanwhile, we are at work implementing...

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Prosperous Universe
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Latest tweets from @prosp_universe

Thanks to you we got into @IndieDB's Top 100! Now we need your voting power for the final round:… T.co

15hours ago

How do you give players the feeling of progression in a pure trading-sim? Cue the material tree!… T.co

Dec 10 2017

Just like that it’s December and the new year is approaching quickly. While Michi continues adding depth to the bas… T.co

Dec 3 2017

Support your favorite browser game and help us get indie game of the year in @IndieDB's contest! Every vote counts… T.co

Dec 1 2017

Our third alpha test has started and is focusing on space flight and trading between two colonies. Meanwhile… T.co

Nov 26 2017

Our third alpha test just started! So far everything seems to be running smoothly!

Nov 22 2017

Company Registration updates, payment systems and TV interviews...another week of Prosperous Universe development i… T.co

Nov 19 2017

This might only be of interested to our german-speaking fans, but @GameStar_de invited our very own @lunikon into t… T.co

Nov 16 2017

Work, work, work...#gamedev isn't always the most exciting, especially when implementing low-level feedback.… T.co

Nov 12 2017

Achievement unlocked! We now have 100 subscribers on YouTube and with it goes a proper channel name! Thanks everyon… T.co

Nov 9 2017

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