Post news RSS Devblog 3: A Living, Breathing, Void

The third Devblog for "dradis" a retro-futuristic tactical space combat simulator. Today I'll be talking about interacting with the game in ways that don't involve blowing things up!

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Hi Everybody,

thanks for checking in! It's been a few weeks since the last devblog, and I've been very busy with RL plus gamedev work so lots to talk about!


TUTORIAL

The sharp-eyed among you will notice a few large changes, starting with the first - the TUTORIAL!

Ooo sounds exciting right? I know, most people think of tutorials as the boring bit you need to slog through to get into the actual game. Indeed it is due to that perception that tutorials are often built directly into the gameplay, see the killhouse in COD, the VR sim in TitanFall, even the train in Halflife. Heck, left4dead actually used their trailers as tutorials, teaching you major game mechanics and sound cues before you had even played the game!

So whats that got to do with me? Well, I'm not as talented as those guys, but I've tried to incorporate something similar here. EVENTUALLY the objective system will provide a way for me to insert story events and side quests into the main game, but for now I'm using it to direct the player to learn the game. Objectives like "activate engine" appear, with little reminder prompts, and little happy noises and rewards for completing the prompted action.

HINTS

The next helpful feature I incorporated was HINTS! Again, it sounds like a little thing, but I've found that it is helpful to pop up little contextual reminders to players that they have access to particular features, or what they should be thinking about doing next.

DOCKING

Ah ha! I did promise there would be ways to interact with the game without blowing things up didn't i?

So the docking system is a major part of that, and it's currently in it's first iteration. Right now it's only possible to repair your hull from dock. But eventually the dock will be where you upgrade your modules and weapons, rename and customize your ship and plan your conquest of the galaxy!

Behold it's beauty!

Ok it doesn't look like much now - but it's a start!

MINING

I've currently disabled the mining drone from the player ship, as I've decided I want a layer of infrastructure in the game to support mining.

The way I see this working is:

1. Player gathers metal from destroyed enemy ships

2. Player exchanges metal for energy at stations

3. Player uses the energy to create mining posts at asteroids belts

4. Basic mining posts generate ore, which can then be refined at other more expensive refineries, which are also created by the player in exchange for energy. Refineries generate advanced materials in exchange for the basic ore from mining posts.

5. The combination of energy, ores and materials can be used at stations to purchase upgrades.

I've got a LONG way to go before getting to that point, although some of the work has been done already. The mining drones are ready, plus I've already coded modular NPCs with a main "spine" that hosts modules like Antenna, engines and weapons turrets. I think these will eventually become the outpost and refinery NPCs, which also gives scope for spending energy to upgrade the outposts themselves with additional drone hangers, turrets, etc.

So much to do so little time! Thanks for reading, see you next time!

Comments
Sbeast
Sbeast

Hey, the game looks pretty cool so far. Will you be needing any music for it?

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