StarMade is a Minecraft inspired multiplayer 3D space shooter. Build your own ship and conquer the galaxy.

Report article RSS Feed StarMade Alpha 0.080 released: Planets

This update brings planets into the StarMade universe, along with a whole new art style, a huge performance boost, and lots of bug fixes.

Posted by schema on Aug 5th, 2012

Planets

Planets in StarMade are disk worlds. You can do anything with them, just like Space Stations. There are currently two types of planets: Earth-like and Mars-like. Expect a lot more shapes and types in the future, because a goal of mine was to implement planets as versatile as possible. While it was hard to do, it now makes the generation of types in all possible colors and shapes and atmospheres pretty simple.

While I didn't include automatic gravity for now on planets to get the player accustomed to the new objects, you can still just place down a gravity module on a planet and activate it.


New Artwork & Textures

StarMade for the first time got another person to help me with the artwork. The awesome beetlebear made new textures for every block in the game. He pixel'd every block side by hand in a resolution of 16x16, and will later add detail to blow it up to 64x64, which is what the StarMade engine supports. He also made the amazing teaser for this update and has some great ship building skills. Check out his Falcon on www.star-made.org/ships

The new StarMade block textures

Expect a lot more awesome artwork from him in the future.

Performance

The most work of this update went into performance in generating, loading, and displaying blocks. I managed to reduce the time to calculate lighting, loading blocks from disk, and to draw it all by a lot. Also I reduced the memory taken by complex caching tricks. Furthermore, the required graphics memory has been reduced to draw even more at once.

Advanced Lighting

A new lighting model has been developed to support infinite fully colored light emitting blocks. Different colors even mix if they overlap. The best of all is, that in the StarMade engine, light emitting blocks don't cost any performance at all, and an infinite number can be used.

Colored lighting mixing

Furthermore, I improved the lighting to calculate a approximate version, if not all blocks to calculate a full lighting are available yet. This prevents the display of grayed out blocks, and makes block loading a lot less noticeable.

Notable Bug Fixes & small features

  • Fixed Saving: saving didn't work on some machines (mostly mac OS).
  • Fixed physics: fixed bugs that caused the character to walk, jump, or sink into blocks, and improved the overall character physics.
  • Fixed physics: blocks could not be added from a few angles.
  • Block Modding: all information about blocks is now available to the players in data/config/blockConfig.xml. You can now modify all variables, textures & icons of any block to mod the game. You can even add new blocks!
  • Improved Block loading requests: Requests of new segments are now taking a lot less time.
  • Fixed block distance display: Implemented a new system for fast segment sorting and improved the display algorithm.

What will come next

I'm very happy to release this version, because it has some features, that I always wanted to include, but though are impossible to realize. After this big update, I will be able to push out the next updates a lot faster, since they won't require to take apart the basics of the game. I will now focus on economy and resources for the next updates. I will also further expand the structure of the universe in sectors -> solar systems -> galaxy -> universe.

Thanks for playing StarMade,
- schema

Post comment Comments
mik3k
mik3k Aug 5 2012, 10:31pm says:

You are awesome, your game is awesome, this is just awesome!

+4 votes     reply to comment
azianinvazn
azianinvazn Aug 6 2012, 12:22am says:

Really cool game! Really hope the game takes off, nice work so far!

+3 votes     reply to comment
Praetor_Niedz
Praetor_Niedz Aug 6 2012, 5:32am says:

WOW! Finally a construction game in space! So cool.

+2 votes     reply to comment
SpeedOfLim
SpeedOfLim Aug 6 2012, 8:27am says:

.....minecraft?

-1 votes     reply to comment
Insolent.
Insolent. Aug 6 2012, 9:48am replied:

No.

+2 votes     reply to comment
gazornonplat
gazornonplat Aug 6 2012, 10:14am says:

I'm really impressed with this in that unlike most minecraft-esque games it genuinely brings something new and exciting to the table. Tracking.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Dekaku
Dekaku Aug 6 2012, 11:03am says:

At first what i really liked:
The idea of Disc worlds, not only because they remind me of certain stories, but also because. . . why not? It's not like the game have to be very accurate. . .

What i didn't like: The music. Sorry ... flutes and this kind of "singing" just dont fit in my "Space-game-music" repertoire... Felt reminded of a certainly titanic ship which hit on a lump of ice... But once i turned off sound it was all good.

+1 vote     reply to comment
a1919
a1919 Aug 6 2012, 1:25pm says:

The music would've been good for about 30 seconds. After that... Yeah.
On the other hand, enjoying the release. Is there anything I can do with all the stuff I dig up on the planet?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Sgt
Sgt Aug 6 2012, 2:19pm replied:

kidding right? The music is great.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Theloehr
Theloehr Aug 6 2012, 2:17pm says:

Die Planeten sind mehr scheiben, ich habs immer gewusst ;D
Irgndwas musst du dir für die rückseite einfallen lassen, die neuen texturen find ich sehr gut und der shop wirkt geordneter

+1 vote     reply to comment
schema Author
schema Aug 6 2012, 4:29pm says:

Hey gang!

If you want to play with the ship that was featured in the .080 teaser video, you can download it here:

Millenium Falcon YT-1300 from the .08 teaser!
Star-made.org

+1 vote   reply to comment
DuxWonder
DuxWonder Aug 6 2012, 5:24pm says:

Truly outstanding, sir.

+2 votes     reply to comment
schema Author
schema Aug 6 2012, 5:41pm says:

StarMade Alpha 0.081 released: Bug Fixes and Missile Performance
Star-made.org

Thanks for playing StarMade!

+1 vote   reply to comment
a1919
a1919 Aug 6 2012, 5:56pm says:

So landing/docking modules can't be used on ships to make carriers, right?

+1 vote     reply to comment
schema Author
schema Aug 6 2012, 6:26pm replied:

docking modules can be used on ships. I think I accidentally switched off the landing module for ships. I'm going to take a look at it and fix it for tomorrows version.

Btw, the difference between docking and landing: Docked ships can still be rotated and used by the pilot. Landing modules fix the landed ship in place

+1 vote   reply to comment
a1919
a1919 Aug 7 2012, 2:06pm replied:

Trying to place a docking module on a ship (both inside and out of build-mode) spits an error back at me, that docking modules aren't allowed on ships.

+1 vote     reply to comment
schema Author
schema Aug 7 2012, 2:56pm replied:

oh, thats odd. I'll look into that

+1 vote   reply to comment
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schema
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