Tales From The Galactopticon is a single-player science fiction action-comedy mod for Half-Life 2. Set 200 years in the future, it stars a diverse crew of space pirates traveling from planet to planet in their search for a the ultimate treasure.

The year is 2200 AD. Our hero, John Solomon, is a down-on-his-luck Laituurian gun for hire living on the planet New New York. After a run-in-with the local mafia, he lands the job of his dreams: a ticket off-planet on a shipful of interstellar pirates. But when Solomon and his new crewmates are contracted to retrieve a priceless alien artifact from under the nose of the interstellar British Empire, they may have bit off more than they can chew.

TFTG will feature crisp ironsighted shooting and regenerating health, augmented by an RPG-style branching dialogue tree system that will allow the player to talk to NPCs, make decisions that influence the story, or learn more about the game world.

The visual style is caricaturized and somewhat cartoonish--somewhere between Team Fortress 2 and Mass Effect. Galactopticon places a premium on striking, colorful level design. Everything will be exciting to look at.

"Listen, three eyes," he said, "don't you try to outweird me, I get stranger things than you free with my breakfast cereal." -The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

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11 comments by Dušek on Jul 25th, 2013

I was just feeling annoyed that another mod I was interested in stopped development without any word on what was going on, and realized there haven't been any Galactopticon blog posts since an interview talking about how everything's going great, so I figured I should post something here.

In December of 2009, I and Jaanus and Uberslug started talking about making a sci-fi mod. We had a lot of ideas and started generating concepts and before long things took off into what you've seen here. The initial scope was immense--ironsighted gunplay, a branching storyline that spanned several planets, character conversation trees, and a whole bunch of gameplay mechanics that don't exist in vanilla HL2. It was definitely too much, especially since none of us was a coder, and having been a part of two other massive mod projects that never saw the light of day I should have realized that sooner.

In any case, as we started putting a team together it became apparent pretty fast that we were trying to do too much stuff--revisions saw the dumping of the branching storyline, conversation trees, until basically all we were trying to do was implement ironsights, regenerating health, and working cutscenes. Progress was being made, but a majority of our team members, including crucial people doing coding, animation, and character rigging, were busy with other projects and were able to contribute only intermittently, if at all. So while we had some great visual effects and some very nice maps and models, the nuts and bolts of the mod were not even close to a playable state, and that didn't look like it was going to change unless we could get some new dedicated team members on board. It might have looked like the mod was chugging along solidly, but it really wasn't. We just didn't have enough of a team.

In 2011 I went to an intensive art course (which I'm still in) that occupied too much of my time for me to be able to run the mod effectively. Around the same time, the SVN server we were using to host the project shut down and we were left without a replacement. After that double blow to the project, not much got done. Nobody declared the project over with, and we still have the assets, but there's no plans to continue work on the mod in its current incarnation in the near future.

We're not abandoning these characters--I've been doing a comic with Uberslug at dullahan-comic.com that features the same pirates, same spaceship, doing some of the stuff they were going to do in the mod. I'd love to revisit this universe in mod form, and I know several other team members would as well. But we don't have coders, and we don't have nearly enough artists to pull of something as substantial as what we promised. If we do something in the future it'll have to be with a team that is able to commit more time to the project, and much smaller in scope. But yes, many of us would love to do another mod project in the Galactopticon universe.

It was lame to not be more communicative with you guys a long time ago, and I do apologize for that--it didn't come from any desire to mislead, but from the fact that it can be tough to look at something one's put so much time into and just admit that it's not working. That probably sounds pretty weak after 2 years incommunicado but there it is.

Again, sorry for the lack of updates for so long, and I hope that answers some questions. If you have others, feel free to ask them in the comments.

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Galactopticon SVN snippet - Dec 3rd

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Dec 3rd

Dec 3, 2010 Demo 10 comments

Everything we had by 3rd of December. If you don't want to use SVN, download this.

Winning Smile wallpaper - 1280x1024 and 1680x1050

Winning Smile wallpaper - 1280x1024 and 1680x1050

Nov 27, 2010 Wallpapers 2 comments

The Winning Smile orbits the planet of New New York.

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Jul 8th

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Jul 8th

Jul 7, 2010 Demo 7 comments

Everything we had by 8th of July. If you don't want to use SVN, download this.

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Jun 5th

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Jun 5th

Jun 1, 2010 Demo 12 comments

Everything we had by 5th of June. If you don't want to use SVN, download this.

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Feb 1st.

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Feb 1st.

Feb 1, 2010 Demo 2 comments

Everything we had by 1st of February. If you don't want to use SVN, download this.

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Jan 10th

Galactopticon SVN snippet - Jan 10th

Jan 11, 2010 Demo 1 comment

Everything we had by 10th of january. If you don't want to use SVN, download this.

Post comment Comments  (0 - 10 of 392)
ngeaaa Jan 25 2014, 4:40pm says:

Just played this mod right now and it was awesome! Why did development stop?

+1 vote     reply to comment
[MC]Pimpão Aug 29 2013, 9:27pm says:

i might be sounding quite a dork but, why exactly you guys need the new source engine to keep the work on the project going on?
and pleaaaaaaaase if you manage to give continuation to such excellent mod, don't change the engine, source is one of the greatest graphic motors that exist, and particularly i'm a huge fan of it

+1 vote     reply to comment
lef4dead61 Aug 23 2013, 12:58pm says:

amk disko disko kop kop :D

-1 votes     reply to comment
Guest Aug 4 2013, 4:46pm says:

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SinKing May 6 2013, 7:18pm says:

Why bother with waiting for a new Source engine? Chances are it won't be different from other current engines.

Go UDK now, crowdfund and buy an Unreal Engine License later. With the potential of this game you could easily make 200k in crowd funding. Since the cartoon is amazing, so would be the singleplayer. You have what most games lack - an original and fantastic artstyle + a decent story and compelling characters. Win, Win, Win!

+11 votes     reply to comment
iAmaNewb Jul 31 2013, 1:58am replied:

Because UDK is hard as **** to understand.
Trust me, a mod on the source engine changed to the UDK and back to Source because it was too difficult to understand.

Source SDK is more simpler.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Pretador Feb 25 2014, 12:29pm replied:

Surely if you have no generic dev experience UDK is probably hard.

+1 vote     reply to comment
aristoatle May 18 2013, 1:36pm replied:

That's pretty true, I think. The quality of this game could bring in a deal from Kickstarter or something like it

Could be there're other issues, or they are wanting to take their time, let it grow in its own time, which I understand.

One last remark, and I'll shut my trap--I believe I remember the project having some obstacles with animations and motion capture. If that's causing a delay, I have some experience with rigging, integrating motion capture that I could share, whatever its value

+2 votes     reply to comment
Meraqel Apr 26 2013, 6:13am says:

"We'll be sure to pick it back up when the new source engine comes out "

This is not realy the best approach, you should make stuff like models, concept arts, story lines, animations... it dosen't need new engine. You could make even some comic pages of "Tales from the Galactopticon." Some back story, for fans sake... so people dont forget you.

ps. Don't hate >:D

+7 votes     reply to comment
Res1 Feb 27 2013, 11:21am says:

Rather sad what happened to this. It was a beautiful project with updates nearly every day. The community was happy and the developers were happy with the progress. Then the updates began to slow down... more and more until well. We got here. Why do all the good mods die?

+9 votes     reply to comment
Jaanus Creator
Jaanus Apr 4 2013, 1:48am replied:

Not dead, more like in lingo. We'll be sure to pick it back up when the new source engine comes out

-1 votes   reply to comment
aristoatle Apr 27 2013, 5:35pm replied:

I think I may have already asked this, but why not use another engine that's already available like UDK or Unity?

Unless you guys are preoccupied right now and expect to be free when Source 2 comes out (a few years?)

+3 votes     reply to comment
aristoatle Apr 27 2013, 5:59pm replied:

of course, not to be taken that it isn't your game, or that taking your time isn't your prerogative and not unwise--I am simply curious if there are any specific issues into which I can perforate my musteline snout and give unqualified and unasked-for advice

+3 votes     reply to comment
ZaneByrnes Apr 27 2013, 9:13pm replied:

The project for sure has a special appeal on the Source Engine.

+1 vote     reply to comment
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