Infinity: Battlescape is a multiplayer space sim spanning a single true to scale star system filled with dozens of planets and moons. Hundreds of players spanning up to 3 powerful corporations of the Starfold Confederacy will fight to win control of the system. The primary goal will be to capture or destroy your enemies infrastructure through a combination of the orbital bombardment capabilities of capital ships and small spacecraft including bombers, interceptors, and corvettes.
“We're working to recreate the epic space battles seen in popular movies and TV series such as Star Wars, Serenity, and Battlestar: Galactica. Combined with our ability to handle seamless planetary transitions and our focus on perfecting space combat, we're going to create a well polished experience that really distinguises itself from other space games. Our technology by itself provides an unforgettable experience and the media that have received the prototype have spent entire days just flying around and exploring”
-Keith Newton, CEO & Cofounder (80.lv Interview)
A match begins with each team being allocated some combination of space stations, planetary bases, factories, and AI controlled defense turrets. Each player will start with a moderate amount of credits with which they can upgrade or customize their ship and equipment, or acquire new ships.
Every couple of minutes a factory spawns a cargo ship which will transfer raw materials to the nearest space station or planetary base for processing into credits. These credits are split evenly among the members of the team however if the cargo ship is destroyed its owners lose the credits. Players are able to donate credits to other members of their team so that they can pool resources.
Small ships with first-person, twitch based Newtonian controls will provide players with high speed dogfights inspired by those seen in sci-fi film and television. We've implemented a flight model that makes each planet a unique experience based on drag, thrust to weight ratio, atmospheric density, and turbulence.
Capital ships are the backbone of a fleet and will be controlled in the 3rd person, providing a unique perspective of the unfolding battle. Individual weapons can independently target or be focused on a single enemy depending on field of view. There are three types of capital ship within Battlescape, each filling a specialized role:
A hardpoint system allows for weapon customization. Choose from an array of weapon types including kinetic projectiles, energy based lasers, and missiles. You may also configure ship sub-systems such as radar, propulsion, and shields.
When we originally set out to build a space game we came to the conclusion that there wasn't any technology available that would allow us to realize our vision of a seamless transition from the surface of one planet to another without loading screens. We hate loading screens and, as life long space game enthusiasts, we resolved to build the technology to accomplish this ourselves. The fruit of that labor is the I-Novae Engine - a revolutionary new game engine capable of bringing you gameplay unlike anything you've ever experienced before.
To support our project, and gain access to the alpha or beta releases, you can pledge directly by creating an account on our website. InovaeStudios.com
Hey everybody. We are happy to announce that we’ll launch our second limited beta-weekend at 19:00 UTC on the 7th of December.
See here for the opening schedule: Bit.ly
As per usual, you’ll need to have an I-Novae account properly linked to your pledge. If this is the first time you are participating, the full details are available in this thread: Infinity Battlescape Beta weekend 7-10 December 2018
In other development news, the first half of the week was spent on major networking improvements. Our networking was pretty solid on low latency, stable connections but quickly degraded and became unplayable when you increased packets loss and latency.
By using a small free tool called “Clumsy” I was able to simulate bad network conditions and investigate the flow and timings of packets being sent / received. It turns out our implementation of reliable UDP had multiple parameters that were fine-tuned for relatively stable, typical EU <-> US latency. I reviewed all this code to ensure the parameters were better set for worse connections.
The game is now bearable for latency up to 300 ms and a packet loss of up to 15%. It will still work with even worse conditions ( I’ve even tested up to 500 ms and a 25% packets drop rate ) but as expected, gameplay suffers and shots accuracy quickly drops, although I was positively surprised to see that our server lag compensation did its job pretty well even at such high latency.
Another change I’ve made is to introduce an adaptive input queue on the server side, which should reduce error corrections ( resulting in a seemingly random loss of control for a second ) in bad network conditions. All these changes should lead to a substantially better experience if you’re playing in unstable network conditions. Input lag was even reduced for those with good connections, so it’s a win-win scenario!
The second half of the week, I continued some HUD improvements following last week’s community session feedback. I performed another pass on the ships physics parameters. Relative masses for the corvette and capital ships was incorrect ( the destroyer had x3 the mass of the corvette, despite being an order of magnitude bigger ) which partially explains some funny behavior in ramming scenarios. The capital ship’s docking spawn direction was flipped ( capital ships now spawn “out” of the station, not “in” ).
The third-person camera was tweaked to feel smoother and better take into account the ship’s mass / inertia. The zoom-out maximum range has been reduced. Maximum angular velocity upon a collision is now artificially dampened to avoid seeing a capital ship spin for dozens of minutes. A major bug related to the collision damage screen-space effect location was fixed, along with many other smaller fixes.
I’ve also started working on the new capital ships control scheme; more on that next week after the initial implementation is done.
On the art side, Dan is working on low-poly collision meshes for all ships ( that’s a lot of work ) which will finally allow more accurate collisions / flying close to the hull of capital ships… and eventually inside the hangar of the carrier. Jan and Kristian have been working for a couple weeks on something we’ve largely ignored until now: weapon meshes. I’m looking forward to seeing capital ships with bad-ass weaponry instead of the puny little placeholders we’re currently using.
That's all for this week! More to follow :D
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