Stardale - Game

by Chris posted on Aug 18, 2014
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This morning I created the very first multi-level pre-alpha build from the game launcher -> space game play to planet landing. In this build players could fly in space, land on planets, then fly back into space in a single player mode. Likewise I could dig/mine while on the planet surface. In one case the player movement speed was tied in with the framerate rather than delta time which created movement speed that increased/decreased based on player FPS - def. not supposed to be like that. I went through and created a long list of bugs/change requests for me to keep track of and to improve on before alpha release.

With that said, once these bugs are fixed and with a few more features added then we will be ever closer to an actual alpha build. There are some games and developers that release "alpha" builds that are actually late beta. When we release Stardale alpha build it will be more or less broken in many regards, crashes, and likely to result in data loss but that is the point of alpha - to test and refine as well as implement late features and adjustments. Nonetheless I see some dev's releasing polished and tested copies of their games under the alpha title but really this would be considered beta in the software release cycle. Nonetheless, hopefully our alpha release - whenever we do release it, will be enjoyable and fun even with bugs. Alpha will be released to a few preorder tiers. We'll have the pre-order page up soon - hopefully we can see a bit of cash flow before our funds dry up! ;)
by Chris posted on Aug 13, 2014
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Jose's working on drawing some of the bosses but I couldn't keep myself from showing off some concept art in the mean time. It looks great! These two ships below are a few run through's before we decided on a final design. The final design for this boss is a bit different than these and I will share it in a future post! ;) When battling bosses you will be able to conquer them to gain rare resources, materials, and items which you will be able to use to your advantage.

One thing to note is the character size in comparison to the ship. A boss of this size will not be easy to conquer and may require more than just a handheld weapon; defence points and turrets may help you out but that is not all.

Nuevo Lienzo. Nuevo Lienzo3.
by Chris posted on Aug 10, 2014
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wouldyouliketolandon.
The past two days I've been working on handling different monitor resolutions as well as the UI. When considering that there are so many different displays available with varying resolutions and pixel densities, in a game that is pixel based it is important to ensure you are handling how to display and render the game properly so it looks great across a wide variety of resolutions. According to steam hardware survey the most popular resolutions used by steam users are 1920x1080 (33% steam users), 1366x768 (25.6%), and in third place at 7.8% is 1600x900. With that in mind, Stardale handles a wide variety of resolutions without any problem at all, these three included and many more. :)

On the topic of resolutions, the main problem in handling different sizes is scaling and rounding. For a pixel art game the artwork has to remain crisp. Non-pixel art games will easily use a bilinear or trilinear filter to smooth out images when resizing however pixel based games cannot use this technique without losing the crispness of the pixels - defeating the purpose of it being a "pixel" type game. To circumvent this you must round up and down to whole numbers when scaling or positioning. For example, you could not use a half digit because there is no such thing as half a pixel to display on. So when scaling, the best approach is to ensure it is done with even width/height ratio and positioning set to whole pixel positioning on screen by rounding.

Finally, I wanted to start working on the player owned stations portion of Stardale tonight but it's 3:20am now I may have to call it a day. Will continue tomorrow. :)
by Chris posted on Aug 7, 2014
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futureearth.
Just wanted to post a quick little screen shot. Behold, future Earth in a galaxy procedurally generated with planets generated by procedure. We can now travel the universe through Stardale to explore the cosmos! The universe itself is at present a work in progress but as of right now you can fly off world and back on world! Likewise planets surfaces are procedurally generated and have been for months. Surface view of planets themselves are procedurally generated and the space view artwork will be too, making the universe feel and look alive and breathing.

For those wondering, "Class: H-Type" stands for "Type-Habitable" or in other words, the planet is habitable/liveable with air breathable for your characters species.

space2.
by Chris posted on Aug 3, 2014
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Tonight I spent some time cleaning up a few bugs and working on the in-space portion of Stardale. For those who didn't know, in Stardale you can actually fly off the planet and into space and then onto other planets. While this isn't fully functional yet, it partially works and is still in development.

I spent a little bit of time getting the planets to orbit stars which required some 2d math.
Code:
float newX = Mathf.Cos(speed) * (pX-oX) - Mathf.Sin(speed)  * (pY-oY) + oX;
float newY = Mathf.Sin(speed) * (pX-oX) + Mathf.Cos(speed)  * (pY-oY) + oY;
return new Vector3(newX, newY, z);
These lines above can be used to calculate the orbital axis where px and py are the location of the orbiting body and ox and oy are the location of the axis you wish to orbit. You can adjust theta to increase or decrease orbital speed. Right now the speed (not shown here) takes into account the mass of the orbiting body, distance between the star and planet, and adjusts so that more distant orbiting bodies aren't just orbiting faster around. Thanks to the help of a friend @Dezi who has a good hand on physics for this formula!

More to come!
by Chris posted on Jul 29, 2014
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mommamia.
In working on the tile layering in order to make tile transitions look more smooth, I ended up rewriting half the code for the tile map. Having done this I've made it a lot more efficient under the hood for placing tiles. The changes removed occasional stuttering which was happening in a few instances and recycling chunks on the fly is a lot more efficient as a result. Now to just get the multilayering and transitions working properly and then we will have hit a major milestone.

In other news we had a OnePlus One 64GB Sandstone invite giveaway. jabdownsmash won the invite and has ordered the phone! It happened out of the blue after having received a 24 hour invitation to purchase it randomly from OnePlus, so why not give it away to our small but growing community!

For anyone reading this, feel free to follow our twitter https://twitter.com/StardaleGame or comment here on the forums!
by Chris posted on Jul 25, 2014
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We've had a few problems with Facebook and Google integration today but they should be fixed now. If you still have problems logging in with one of the social media integration applications then please let us know on twitter @StardaleGame.

I've tested several accounts without issue so hopefully there aren't any problems in the near future... or ever.

Thanks!