Project Kino

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barfightspectator
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Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:09 pm

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-- Intro
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Hey, you I would like to recruit you to help me. With ideas and your perspective.

I recently had a new idea for a game but in this case the strong urge to realize it. The best part about that is that I already have a game self-published (LINK) and have a little experience with what it takes to make a game. So you know you most likely won't waste your time by spending it on this.

Now I would love to tap the minds of the people browsing the art section here because I like the community and would like to utilize it. So I'm going to ask different questions/pose different theoretical scenarios to get a variety of perspectives.

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-- What is this game then?
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Now of course I will try not to spoil anything important so for now we'll focus on the universe, backgrounds and mechanical pieces.

Quick primer: The tech level is ~equivalent to Stargate's "ancients".. just before they left their galaxy (so Star Trek without the matter/energy magic).

The game itself will be playing on a research vessel in volume about equivalent to 5 average family homes. This vessel will be crewed by seven people (by function: Captain Navigator Tactical Officer Engineer Bio-chemist Botanist Anthropologist). This crew will have been on their journey for half a year, we're jumping in on the last month of that in the prologue.

When the game starts you will be presented with this information, then a loop starts. Each week you can give each member one task to finish over the week. These decisions are made via multiple choice panels (4 max choices per week) containing sketch/concept level graphical depictions of the tasks. The decisions are never revealed. The player makes the choices and moves on to the next member/week.

These decisions will shape the "world" you are going to inhabit in the actual game. The fix point is that at some point during those 4 weeks the ship is going to start malfunctioning and has to be evacuated (the point at which that happens also depends on the player choices).

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-- Examples
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So if you for example are parked next to a quazar or pulsar for research purposes when things go wrong.. the environment on the ship might be a bit "hostile". In that case all energy would be going to the shields so the ship doesn't fry and everything else would be on emergency power. So that would mean one task for the player in the game later is getting out of there and switching the shields off so they can power on the rest of the ship. (depending in the engine state of disrepair this can result in gameplay worth one to ten minutes). The engine state could be another variable for the engineer while the ship location would be determined by the navigator.

Another example would be a pre task to gather some lime on a planet to refill the co2 scrubbers or the air is gonna be scat later in the actual game.

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-- Here you come in:
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I need crew chores and goals to do on a research ship that has to spend half a year in space.

So far I got:
* collecting/mining lime for co2 filtration
* collecting water (h2o) (from random space rocks)
* collecting nitrogen (from a gas giant?)
* filtering hdo out of the h2o for fuel (on board refinery process or on site filtering)
* maintaining the hydroponics
* calibrating guns/shields
* Checking artificial atmosphere levels for pathogens
* changing the bags on the dust sucker drones
* researching different phenomena in space
* researching alien species
* Manufacturing glass components (one person could request borosilicate glass for a machine and the other guy delivers tempered glass which shatters (discoverable by email exchange))

If you can think of more things to do please do let me know.
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barfightspectator
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Mon Mar 13, 2017 2:19 pm

not sure if you can parse these yet but here's the first update video

https://www.minds.com/archive/view/686642976746643467

the next update is just around the corner with energy and health for the kino, there's still a few things to iron out (impacts vs scrapes, universal way for attachments and controlers to "use energy".. )
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barfightspectator
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Wed Mar 15, 2017 8:39 am

I've reached a pretty good point with the energy system, I've made it almost as granular as I want it.
How's it work? We have the Kino with a massive battery (rechargable hdo cold fusion cell (using a crystal lattice to replace palladium and reach the necessary high partial pressures)).
Every physics update call each component request to draw a certain ammount of current, inside the battery we sum up the draw and cap it at a certain value for that requests cycle so we don't draw more current than it can handle safely. The components get their power if the circuit is kept closed and then do their thing. So you can't for example run a shield under load and recharge a boost capacitor at the same time.

The Kino runs internally 36v dc; There is a base power draw ~3A, engines (translation thrusters) take 83A max based on distance from ground, thrust vector in relation to gravity and xy length. The boost capacitor draws only 11A constant but takes 15 seconds to charge. and so on...

Not sure if that makes sense to you but it means much more control once other pieces are implemented. For example: You can alter your hover height manually at any point.. there is a function to auto return to a certain hover height so you can set the desired hover height lower to save power or it can be deactivated and you'd have to manually adjust. Same kind of deal with the inertial dampeners when active they give you a good threshold to bumping into things and stop you drifting around like a sardine in oil.. but they do draw power.

You can at any point de/activate/modify "driver functions" to change the way the drone you control behaves. In addition to that there are two attachment points on the sides where things like Boost, Light, *snip for spoilers* can be attached.

With all of these pieces and their modularity I'm opting for a different way of holding variables. I'm atm building a little console with a backing persistent console variable table which will also be logging.

I'm an architecture whore.. so I can't have things telling their controllers what to do ;)
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barfightspectator
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Thu Mar 16, 2017 2:17 pm

Just watching ME and the AR window to the past/scan thing.. now it's gonna be "like mass effect" *sigh
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barfightspectator
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Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:46 am

Intro to Project #Kino .. and me

[MEDIA=youtube]x3WDJxX3gt8[/MEDIA]
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barfightspectator
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Fri Mar 24, 2017 6:00 pm

For story reasons there is an alien language and alphabet. Today I'd like to explain how the letters work.

Each letter is a 3x4 12bit matrix. The first row is the header describing the content in the 3x3 below. Those contents can be numbers, letters(as we understand them), signs or patterns. A pattern is a common combination of letters used together often so they get their own "letter" (like co on an er ti in at al).
So this alien language can have 729 letters while still allowing to be humanly readable and writable via common component "letters". I've patterned the entire english dictionary for the lols; at a length of 2 there are only 600odd patterns that make up all words.
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barfightspectator
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Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:01 am

So the language and script are going to be leaning towards something more resembling proto-sinaitic and phoenetian. The pro-sinaitic will make sense once I get into the uniliterals, which will be language grammar functions (dog, sDog, ingDog, ..)

But first we contract and substitute. Still using english as a base because after all it is for a game.

So let me show you what part 1 does to my previous post:

For stori reasons thre is n alin lncfac nd alphbt. Todai I'd lic to xplain hof the letrs forc.

Each letr is a 3x4 12bit matrx. The first rof is the headr dscribinc the contnt in the 3x3 blof. Those contnts cn b nfmbrs, letrs(as f fndrstnd thm), sicns or patrns. A patrn is a comon combination of letrs fsed tocthr oftn so thei ct their ofn letr (lic co on n r ti in at al).
So this alin lncfac cn hf 729 letrs fhile stil alofinc to b hfmnli readable nd fritable fia comon compont letrs. I'f patrned the ntire nclish dictionri for the lols; at a lncth of 2 thre re onli 60od patrns tht mac fp al fords.

Dolan would be proud :P

That's what I run through my lexer and against a latin dictionary to find the 72 most common language functions in english (if there are that many), those will then be replaced by their own new characters, then the result is displayed in the new script and viola.. alien language.

[ATTACH=full]1842[/ATTACH]

I condensed the script a bit. It'll only be 8 bits. 2bit header and 6bit body. Unforeseen side-effect: The characters are tetris now.
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barfightspectator
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Sun Apr 30, 2017 11:28 am

Totally forgot to update this:
[ATTACH=full]1872[/ATTACH]

that's the font.
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barfightspectator
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Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:37 pm

Well the scope is somewhat smaller now but the plan to build this never changed. It'll be a 2D game.

Since September 2019 I've been prototyping systems and mechanics and I think I've arrived at a point where I got a solid enough knowledge-base and foundation to build an interesting complex world system. Let me catch you up a bit:

Back in 2019 I was still hanging on to the idea of a 3D world. Later on I had to be honest with myself and realize that it wasn't doable for me alone.
Image
I would call it procedural but the vegetation on my little planets was more random than anything else really. I did later experiment with hex-spheres and biomes but dropped those ideas.

Image
Somewhere inbetween I checked out what I could pull off in terms of pre-authored terrains but hardware and internet infrastructure at large is not at a point where this would be easily doable.. in the browser. As an offline game, sure. Chunk it and stream in the neighboring chunks as you need them, add some LOD system and maybe some directional sprite generation for foliage objects... but i digress. This path I abandoned aswell in late 2019.

That's been the road so far. Jumpcut to a few weeks ago:

So it would seem like I’m going to be building, at least until I see another bright shiny bauble, a crpg. Yep, a moldy, oldy 2D shoot n’ scrolly.

You wanna know what brought it all together?! The plants. The spice is essential for space travel. I’m talking about harvest moon or it’s most recent younger sibling stardew valley of course; when the good mister cohh played the 1.5 version.
Now… Imagine that, sprinkle in some guns, set it in space, command a group of explorers with a fixed homebase some funky worm-holy physics and suddenly you’ve got yourself a Mass Effect/ Sliders/ Stargate Game.

Mind you those are just parallels and any resemblance to any of these IPs is purely coincidental. At most I was “inspired by”…

I’m gonna call it “Wormhole XTreme”… :rofl: naaah on a serious note tho, if you liked Sliders and SG this game is gonna be your jam.

Our heroes' journey:
The Game starts in a familiar place. Home if you will. Your team of four will get an assignment to venture out farther than anyone before them ever has; With the possible peril of this being a “one way trip”. Of course. The team leader refuses, exposition… They decide to go. Maybe there’ll be one/two missions in the “known world” first, with backup both personal and technological for greater contrast later.
So now they embark and cross the threshold to the unknown. Little information about this place has made it to them but the rewards must far outweigh the potential costs. After all, anything else would be madness. Madness I tell you.
They arrive in the new place, to find out it was indeed a one-way trip. But something else is up with this place. Something restricts them in movement to the inside of their base and may hamper their ability to expand beyond a central area. If it’s planetside it might be a toxic atmosphere, submarine, vulcalic winter… if it’s in space, well it’s space. This will require them to manage their resources differently. No food from the planet’s surface, no easy outs. This “back to the wall” funnel means they will have to stabilize their base and venture out using the mechanic that brought them here; exploring an alien verse, encountering creatures, cultures and creating comforts. Extending their base/their ability to hold more of it, opening up new abilities and aspects of the game while also lowering the priority of repeating mechanics from the beginning of the game and extending the scale each step of the way.

This is gonna be a single player rpg, in 2D.

Then a lot more days happened, I played around with making the player and the fireteam work. Notice the high quality and totally on-theme art assets :P
Image
Image
First was pathfinding, then the squad formations and then I had to teach 'em to see the world

https://youtu.be/4b0XdikX2eE
Spoiler: That system was way to complex for a 2d game and led to undesirable behaviors after actually having tested it.

But it did help me to build the first squad system:
https://youtu.be/l1KYR7Bf3LM

Which then showed the shortcomings of the first version of the vision sensor.. so up came another one
https://youtu.be/xRBT-CxHfts

At this point I had been working on the bloody ai and team mechanics for weeks. Did get sick of it at that point but there was something essential missing. Behaviors. Up until this point I had been using finite state machines for my agents and was having a hard time planning/visualizing them in my head.
So I switched to behavior trees and made behavior bees
Image

https://youtu.be/ShMxWEdTUoc

I chose bees because there were somewhat more complex than a lobster and more interesting than a starfish.. which was the personality of my ai up to this point.

And here we are today, all caught up. I'm getting used to thinking in behavior trees by building simple creatures with few tasks. (Imagine my joy when I saw beehives in vallheim hehe). While doing that I also started work on the plants. After all the bees really to goto the plants, collect a random amount of pollen and when they reach a threshod they bring it back home where it converts to honey and wax. So of course the next logical step is to write some plants that actually can be pollinated.. which turns out is more complex than I had anticipated.
But once the plants are written I can make large, old-growing trees that spring from a sprout, bushes that don't fruit if there is nothing to pollinate them, other types of bushes that pollinate in the wind and of course seeds. Because somehow they do have to propagate. And of course we do need seeds for the chickens. Can't forget the chickens.
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barfightspectator
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Fri Mar 05, 2021 3:07 pm

Heres a few updates:

I went and stated converting things to 3d
https://youtu.be/LKrxoNcHdmI

Then i tried out different camera setups and player control setups
https://youtu.be/6VerNBUYyWU
https://youtu.be/XRQJ1ivcz6A
and by the end of that journey a also made interactable objects and a basic inventory
https://youtu.be/8-In1dnVoH4

Next I made equippable items that modify character stats, continued on the inventory and made loadable indoor areas
https://youtu.be/ADzMhXugJC4

Right now im working on some basic enemies and the foundations of combat
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