The Ur-Quan Masters Discussion Forum

The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release => General UQM Discussion => Topic started by: guesst on September 07, 2008, 07:14:09 pm



Title: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: guesst on September 07, 2008, 07:14:09 pm
For the RetroRemake contest the user Dragon has committed to remaking Star Control 1.

http://www.retroremakes.com/forum2/showthread.php?p=180694 (http://www.retroremakes.com/forum2/showthread.php?p=180694)

I couldn't be happier.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Amiga_Nut on September 07, 2008, 10:30:24 pm
A net-play capable sc1 would be fun.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Shiver on September 08, 2008, 03:23:55 pm
This looks really cool for a one man project. His Spathi doesn't look quite right, I hope he redesigns it. Just one minor nitpick.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: meep-eep on September 08, 2008, 06:28:31 pm
The original SC1 content can be extracted using the unpkg tool which can be found in the UQM svn repository. The file format for the scenario's hasn't been completely reverse engineered though. It is probably quicker to copy the maps by hand from within the game than to RE the file format. The files may still prove useful though for the scenario descriptions.
What we know of the scenarios (and several other SC1 files) can be found in doc/devel/sc1 (http://sc2.svn.sourceforge.net/viewvc/sc2/trunk/sc2/doc/devel/sc1?view=markup) in the UQM source, but don't expect too much of it.

Also, the URL for the UQM forums hasn't been http://uqm.stack.nl/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.pl for a long time now, although it still redirects you to the right location. http://forum.uqm.stack.nl/ (http://forum.uqm.stack.nl/) is the real starting location.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on September 08, 2008, 09:18:57 pm
This looks really cool. Great find Guesst. I wonder if, as an added bonus, this will become moddable in some way as well? I'd love to make scenarios for it.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on September 13, 2008, 07:22:38 pm
Hi!

Just a quick update.  All the modeling is done now so it's mostly the coding that remains.

Too answer a few questions: 
It's scriptable at a fairly low level but it's nasty.  I'm still thinking about including something like the original scenario editor.
Net play should make an appearance after the competition as I've got another project which needs it.
I couldn't spot what's wrong with the Spathi; did you mean the Shofixti?  The Shofixti didn't turn out how I wanted..


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Shiver on September 14, 2008, 03:15:17 am
I couldn't spot what's wrong with the Spathi; did you mean the Shofixti?  The Shofixti didn't turn out how I wanted..

The tube length on the ship is too long, especially those two diagonals near the aft of the ship. Every sphere other than the central one should be a little bigger as well. I'm looking at SC2 as a reference because I don't remember what the SC1 Spathi Eluder looks like off the top of my head. Disregard if you want to.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on September 14, 2008, 01:34:40 pm
The tube length on the ship is too long, especially those two diagonals near the aft of the ship. Every sphere other than the central one should be a little bigger as well.
Fixed :).  I've shortened all the tubes except the rocket launcher and sized the whole ship up a bit.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Shiver on September 15, 2008, 05:48:29 pm
Fixed :).  I've shortened all the tubes except the rocket launcher and sized the whole ship up a bit.

Cool.


Title: It's still going!
Post by: PakoPako on October 17, 2008, 06:11:36 pm
Holy crap this looks good (http://www.retroremakes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=120&t=11919&st=0&sk=t&sd=a).

-=PakoPako=-


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on October 18, 2008, 02:25:06 pm
Quote
Holy crap this looks good.
Thanks for that!  There's now a small tech demo there if you follow your link to the end of the topic.
Things are slowly coming along :)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Resh Aleph on October 18, 2008, 08:33:42 pm
What an exciting project! Can't wait to play this. :D

A little quibble about the demo: being the science geek that I am, I didn't really care for those turning twists, as such movements only make sense within an atmosphere, where the wings (or rotor blades) push against the air horizontally. Not that turning in the original was very true to physics -- accelarating, rotating 90 degrees and accelerating again will gradually negate your speed at the original direction -- but that makes piloting much easier and more fun. Besides, I was much less skeptic when I first played the original. :P

Then again, I suppose most people will prefer it this way. Science isn't that popular. :'(

Keep up the good work! :)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Mr Brian on October 19, 2008, 01:47:34 am
Hey nice job! 
I was skeptical about translating the ships to 3D, but they look quite faithful to the 2d versions even while pitching and yawing about :)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on October 19, 2008, 12:33:59 pm
Thanks for the feed back!

'fraid I'm going to keep the rolling on the ships.  It's the only way to show-off that they're actually in 3D ;).  It probably needs toning down a bit although guesst's had an idea which could make the rolling useful (the ability to flip your wings out of the way of a bullet).


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Fred on October 22, 2008, 07:11:17 pm
Great work!  I'm watching.  No pressure  ;D


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on October 22, 2008, 10:28:49 pm
Quote from: Fred
Great work!  I'm watching.  No pressure   ;D
Hold on, you're not the Fred?  (http://www.retroremakes.com/forum/images/smilies/a09.notworthy.gif)  That's like OMG OMG OMG...

*ahem*

Nothing like having just that little bit of extra motivation to get this finished*.  Thanks for the comment. :)

*that ontop of that I may have pointed questions asked with pointy obects if I stopped now, so no pressure ;)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Valaggar Redux on October 23, 2008, 02:22:09 pm
Great work!  I'm watching.  No pressure  ;D

*falls on his knees in front of the Most Holy Twin God, Fred Ford*

My Lord... It is the utmost honour to see Thee here, in this sacred place. Know that I, Thy faithful Grand Inquisitor and High Priest, am ever watching over Thy flock, sorting out the wheat for the chaff, the heretic from the righteous believer!

Verily, let us proceed to sacrificing some faithless souls to Thee, O Great Lord Ford. Assemble the stake!
*sacrifices a certain someone*


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on October 24, 2008, 11:21:21 am
Looks really impressive. Also, unless I'm missing something you didn't mention the tech demo on this forum, so I'll just link it (http://starcontrol.classicgaming.gamespy.com/forum/index.php?topic=1680.msg26018#new). hope that's alright, if not I'll remove it.

EDIT: Looks like I didn't read the topic carefulyl enough, you do mention it on the first page. Whoops. Anyway, the demo looks great, I'm looking forward to the full product.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Death 999 on October 24, 2008, 09:17:21 pm
It just occurred to me to try to load this on wine, but it'd demanding a dll I don't have... what's it like?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on October 24, 2008, 09:24:50 pm
Yeah, it demands an extra DLL. You can find it in the same thread, next page I think.

It's a colonised life planet (chekc the sceenshots) rotating, with a Spathi and Earthling cruiser circling it. The 3D animation is very cartoony somehow, quite fitting for SC. I think the ships might roll a tad too much, but that's just me.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on October 25, 2008, 11:25:47 am
*sacrifices a certain someone*
Haven't the foggiest who you're on about but as long as you're happy ;)

Quote from: Lukipela
I'm looking forward to the full product.
That makes two of us  ;D  I originally scheduled to end a week before the compo deadline (6th December) but I just slipped by a week so it's going to be cutting it awfully fine.

Quote from: Death 999
It just occurred to me to try to load this on wine, but it'd demanding a dll I don't have...
Yeah, it doesn't play nicely with Wine at all.  The good news is I know about it and want to fix it. The bad news is that it's not a priority :(


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on October 25, 2008, 06:16:22 pm
That makes two of us  ;D  I originally scheduled to end a week before the compo deadline (6th December) but I just slipped by a week so it's going to be cutting it awfully fine.

I think this is one of the great parts about the project. There's an actual deadline and it's not years away. Far too often SC projects just tend to go on indefinitely with goals that are vague at best. But this time we know we're getting something. Or least we hope so ;)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: psydev on October 28, 2008, 11:36:11 am
What are your strategies for Star Control 1?
For Hierarchy, it's: manufacture Vux, maybe androsynth in the beginning, and then only use Ur-Quans once you have enough money.
Alliance: Earthlings or Syreen early on, then Mmrnmhrms and  Arilous once you have more cash, with a Chenjesu thrown in for good measure... Yehat are OK but Ur-Quan fighters can make short work of them often, making them a risky use of cash. Arilous and Mmrnmhrms can take on pretty well anything.



Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Elvish Pillager on October 28, 2008, 08:53:14 pm
What are your strategies for Star Control 1?
Hierarchy: Save up for an Ur-Quan and then steamroll everything.
Alliance: Save up for a Mmrnmhrm and then steamroll everything.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: psydev on October 29, 2008, 12:49:57 am
lol... nice reply, Elvish Pillager. That pretty much sums it up. For this reason, and also since there will be annoying "spathi vs. yehat" type ship combinations, I don't think that an SC1 remake would be very much fun multiplayer. If I had coding skills I would make the game have Master of Orion-style combat, and a similar but slightly more fun strategic map.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on October 29, 2008, 08:44:32 am
Hierarchy: Save up for an Ur-Quan and then steamroll everything.
Alliance: Save up for a Mmrnmhrm and then steamroll everything.
Yup, that's pretty much it although the Mmrnmhrm don't so much steamroll as beat-to-death-with-pillows.  That's got to be the most annoying and tedious death to be on the receiving end of.

I have a couple of ideas on how to combat this (the steamrolling) without changing the ship balances.  Locking scenarios will mean the player must play through the scenarios with limited ship types and limited ships: effectively changing strategies completely.  Also making the AI more aggressive will make it harder to dig-in and save up for the heavy ships.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Elvish Pillager on October 29, 2008, 11:14:00 am
In the hands of human players, every Hierarchy ship but VUX and Umgah can give challenge to Mmrnmhrm - so I think it's a matter of making the tactical AI better. Of course, that's a daunting task, but there's not much point in the strategic mode if you always win the tactical battles, now is there?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: psydev on October 29, 2008, 12:05:29 pm
Quote
there's not much point in the strategic mode if you always win the tactical battles, now is there?

Which is why I envision a remake of SC1 to be, while kinda cool and fun, ultimately not that interesting. I would much rather see a SC1 grand strategy game (perhaps played out kind of like a combination of Settlers of Catan and Magic the Gathering, with cards you collect and play, investment, etc.) that ditches the melee combat.

I wouldn't mind if SC"4" were like that, where you control huge fleets and do campaigns.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on November 02, 2008, 08:33:51 pm
I wouldn't mind if SC"4" were like that, where you control huge fleets and do campaigns.
Hold that thought ;D  Whilst my entry into the Remakes Compo is a category 1 retro remake (http://oddbob.wordpress.com/categories/ (http://oddbob.wordpress.com/categories/)) afterwards... well we'll see (!)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: psydev on November 03, 2008, 04:18:31 am
an sc1 remake might be better if it allowed more than 1 on 1 combat to spice things up and remove the brutality of bad ship combos.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Shiver on November 03, 2008, 07:39:55 am
an sc1 remake might be better if it allowed more than 1 on 1 combat to spice things up and remove the brutality of bad ship combos.


Ignore him. Stick to the formula. Anyway, the only truly bad ship combo in SC1 is Yehat vs Spathi.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Resh Aleph on November 03, 2008, 09:59:48 am
Say, Dragon, mind doing silly ol' obsessive aleph a favor and type "Star Control" in two words? It would make the universe complete. Thanks. :-[


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on November 03, 2008, 01:09:29 pm
Ignore him. Stick to the formula.
That's easily done as I'd be disqualified if I didn't ;).  What I was vaguely alluding to is that everything will be released under (at least) the LGPL and the gameplay should be scriptable.  It's the scriptability which is giving me issues at the moment though but if it works then anyone can (fairly easily) make changes.

Quote from: alephresh
Say, Dragon, mind doing silly ol' obsessive aleph a favor and type "Star Control" in two words? It would make the universe complete. Thanks.
Hehe, fixed.  If only they were all that easy.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on January 17, 2009, 12:56:37 pm
I'm posting an update as I've change direction slightly since my last post.  I've made no fundamental changes to the gameplay: this is still a straight SC1 remake.  I have decided (now that I've haven't got a deadline :() to add a bit of polish.  This comes through as two design decisions:

The first is that I'm modeling each of the races for the pilot window animations - I was going to leave them out but I might have a use for them afterwards.

The second change is that the entire gameplay is being written in SmallTalk.  This makes is very easy to write as SmallTalk is an utterly awesome language for scripting.  This will also make it very easy to mod as all the code will be available whilst the game is running and it's possible to change it and immediately see the result.  It's hard to stress how useful/powerful this is unless you've actually used SmallTalk.  The downside is that I'm writing my own (VM'less) implementation.  I've a couple of reasons why I'm not using an existing implementation but mostly it's just because I want to write it myself.  Fortunately it's a very well thought out, simple language.

And seeing as I promised I wouldn't post unless I had something to show.  Here's a non-mocked up screenshot of a Vux Intruder vs an Earthling Cruiser.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3449/3203708574_fc8020bd53_o.png)

and a link to the hi-res version (http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_7gYqvPiuRnA/SXHB3z2ebaI/AAAAAAAAAL8/FYYBKBywQ-Q/s1600-h/VuxVsHuman.png) (120KB).  [EDIT] Aaagh, the image was sized down anyway...

Happy Days!


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on January 17, 2009, 08:37:54 pm
While I am slightly disappointed that we'll have to wait longer for your game, the modability certainly sounds very exciting. While I'm not familiar with SmallTalk, easy modability is a big plus. It'd allow us to expand the SC universe with new stories and adventures.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Draxas on January 17, 2009, 08:41:23 pm
To say nothing of the fact that that screenshot looks pretty snazzy. Nice work.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on January 17, 2009, 08:42:41 pm
True that, it looks amazing. you have some real talent Dragon.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on January 17, 2009, 11:38:43 pm
Thanks for that :)

While I'm not familiar with SmallTalk, easy modability is a big plus.

To put my lecture hat on (and those who don't like coding can safely ignore the rest):

SmallTalk comes from the Lisp branch of the programming tree so it's quite different to the COBOL inspired languages (C++, BASIC, Pascal, Java and friends).

Once one gets over the initial WTF stage it's actually incredibly well thought out and consistent.  Absolutely everything is an object and there are only six keywords.  To grab an example straight off Wikipedia, an if 'statement' looks like this:

Code:
result := a > b
    ifTrue:[ 'greater' ]
    ifFalse:[ 'less' ]

Looking at "a > b", it's evaulated as a Boolean (which is an object, there are not primitives) and it is either going to be True or False.  Both of which are subclasses of Boolean.  The magic is that Boolean has two abstract  functions (virtual functions for the C++ers): ifTrue and ifFalse.

The True class overrides  ifFalse to do nothing and ifTrue to evaluate the block of code passed to it.  The False class does the opposite.

So here "ifTrue:[ 'greater' ]" passes the block closure (ie: chunk of code) to the ifTrue function on - for example - an instance of the True class.  ifTrue will ask the block ( [    ] ) to evaluate itselt and then assign (:=) that result to "result".

The code in the block 'greater' (yup, 'greater' is the whole block of code) just returns the string "greater".  Remember the code 'greater' is not executed until ifTrue evaluates it.  The quotes around greater is SmallTalk for string and block closures always return their last line of code.  In this case we only have one line so it returns a string.

Bizarre until you get you head around it...

...and it's safe to look again :P


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Cedric6014 on January 18, 2009, 12:23:25 am
For the RetroRemake contest the user Dragon has committed to remaking Star Control 1.

http://www.retroremakes.com/forum2/showthread.php?p=180694 (http://www.retroremakes.com/forum2/showthread.php?p=180694)

I couldn't be happier.

Dammit, looks like this site is broken. if you go to retroremakes.com, it explains why.

Dragon, is there somethign I'm missing here? Is there another way to look at the thread?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Tim on January 18, 2009, 07:08:38 am
I remember reading about this a couple months ago, but it was sort of a fleeting thing though. I'm very happy to see this is still being done, because this has the potential to be great. Fantastic job, Dragon. Please keep working on it, and please keep it open-source. I won't say why. :P


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on January 18, 2009, 10:11:37 am
Dragon, is there somethign I'm missing here? Is there another way to look at the thread?
Unfortunately the remakes site is well borked at the moment :(.  The admins are looking at restoring a backup as an archive so hopefully the old threads will be viewable.  Until then it's a fresh slate.

Please keep working on it, and please keep it open-source. I won't say why. :P
No worries there :). 
I haven't joined the sequel discussion because I'm not fond of writing gameplay, I'd far rather lurk on the engine side of things.  If this project gets used for greater things I'd be happy but if it doesn't - well - I'd still be happy.  I'm just writing it for the hell of it. 

I've posted screenshots of the Hierachy and Alliance ships below.  They're pretty much final so I don't foresee any significant changes to them again...  State of the nation or whatever.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3532/3206112416_2d6a8155ee_o.png)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3106/3206112418_39d2897d5f_o.png)



Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lachie Dazdarian on January 18, 2009, 10:56:37 pm
I like almost all of them, but ever since I saw your design of the Cruiser I had a problem with it. I don't know. I just think the front part should be done differently and the cockpit (blue window) redesigned. These are 3D models? Are they 3D models in the very engine or 2D sprites?

Also, I'm not sure I like the stars in the previous screenshot.

BTW, how do you plan to draw the cockpits? Plain pixel art skill or 3D models?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Cedric6014 on January 18, 2009, 11:21:06 pm
I reckon the umgah could do with a bit more work. It needs a bit more weight at the back.

I love everything else though, great work


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: SuddenDeath on January 19, 2009, 03:55:56 pm
Just 2 minor complaints/suggestions:
Shofixti - seems a bit... too grey? Perhaps it could use a few of the details from the old ship...
Chenjesu - the original Broodhome had a bunch of blue 'needles' on the back side which looked really cool...

These are your ideas though, so feel free to ignore me :D

But what I can say in general - I LOVE these! Great job! ;D


Oh, and one more thing - what does the Mmrnmhrm Y-wing look like? Have you made it yet?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on January 19, 2009, 06:01:08 pm
Ta for the feedback,

I just think the front part should be done differently and the cockpit (blue window) redesigned. Are they 3D models in the very engine or 2D sprites?
BTW, how do you plan to draw the cockpits? Plain pixel art skill or 3D models?
The ships in game are 3D models (just plain old DirectX). I'm also planning on having the cockpit animations as full 3D models. My pixelling skill tends to ... um ... bad, so they kinda have to be 3D.

I've used the SC1 DataBank pictures as reference which is why the ships look different to those in the melee.  The Earthling Cruiser (http://wiki.uqm.stack.nl/Image:Star_control_i_earthling_cruiser_databank.png) and also the Vux Intruder are my two favourite ships so I'm going to leave the front the way it is.  I did just notice I left off the point-defense laser system though.  Oops.

I reckon the umgah could do with a bit more work. It needs a bit more weight at the back.
Yeah, the Umgah Drone (http://wiki.uqm.stack.nl/Image:Star_control_I_umgah_databank.png) looks quite different in it's DataBank entry - and also the SC2 version looks somewhat different to the SC1 one.  As I couldn't see the back of the ship I just made it up but on reflection I need to shorten it or something.

Just 2 minor complaints/suggestions:
Shofixti - seems a bit... too grey? Perhaps it could use a few of the details from the old ship...
Chenjesu - the original Broodhome had a bunch of blue 'needles' on the back side which looked really cool...
Oh, and one more thing - what does the Mmrnmhrm Y-wing look like? Have you made it yet?
The Shofixti Scout (http://wiki.uqm.stack.nl/Image:Star_control_i_shofixti_scout_databank.png) is the one ship that I'm really unhappy with.  I should probably scrap it and remodel it to look like the SC2 variant which I prefer.  For the Chenjesu Broodhome (http://wiki.uqm.stack.nl/Image:Star_control_i_chenjesu_broodhome_databank.png) I like the DataBank version better than the melee one so I'm leaving that one the way it is also.  Plus it has a much higher polygon count than that any of ther other ships already - so I'd rather not add even more.

Again, thanks for the feedback :)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on January 19, 2009, 06:09:43 pm
Whoops, sorry - I forgot about the Mmrnmhrm Y-wing.  I found an old picture of it from when I was asking for suggestions on colouring over at remakes, so here it is:

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3132/2868588712_32ac3efb95_o.png)

The only change is that I've removed the detail from the wings so it's still pretty similar but with dark pink wing recesses.

And whilst I was digging through old piccys I found a final version of the starmap planets so here it is also ;D

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3120/2868130894_b89db2a300_o.png)

The little planets in the corner are the starmap versions whilst the big ones are for the event animations and melee game.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Data on January 19, 2009, 09:26:26 pm
Wow  :o
Keep up the good work - this is like a dream come true, I actually asked a looooong time ago if anything like this is ever going to be made.
Now, your ship models are great, just look, well, differently. However, that is not a bad thing, actually quite the contrary, just expect a lot of people saying how you should have done this or that differently (for example, I would make, if I knew how :D, Chenjesu a bit bluer and other Alliance ships more colorful, but you really shouldn't listen to me, Really, this isn't a joke, I suck at design)
On the other hand, planets look absolutely gorgeous no matter what way you put it. Just, please, please, PLEASE don't give up on the project. Please.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Malrunus on January 30, 2009, 01:06:22 am
I tried going to this link to check it out, and it's giving me the 404 error.  Has it been moved?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on January 30, 2009, 04:20:06 pm
I tried going to this link to check it out, and it's giving me the 404 error.  Has it been moved?
Unfortunately it hasn't been moved so much as gone'd.  The forum it was on was hacked and it hasn't - yet - been restored as an archive.  I'll update the link when it is.  All that is really missing are the tech demos which were just for checking compatibility.

At the moment I'm deep in code land so there isn't anything pretty to show - I'm still badgering away at it though.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Bigryan on February 10, 2009, 01:43:21 am
Wow, you are making some really great models.  I'm also a hobbiest trying to put together a star control fan game... my models are not half as cool though.  Man I'd love to get a hold of some nice models like that for my fan game.

I can't wait to try yours!  You've got some mad art skillz.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on May 13, 2009, 09:47:52 pm
Alright I've managed a fairly major milestone, only there's a bit of a gotcha.  You have to really, really like C++ before you'll appreciate it.  So to keep it short I'll just mention that I can successfully preprocess the entire set of windows headers.  That's 46 000 lines of code per translation unit (a translation unit is a .cpp file).  Feeding the preprocessed source back to a compiler gives *no* errors so I can be fairly certain I haven't missed anything.

If you're asking WTF this has to do with Star Control I can explain.  I need the structures (classes and structs) and various function pointers (and calling conventions) so that I can call C++ methods directly from Smalltalk.  To do this I need to parse at least some of my own source files - which is easy'ish - but I decided I'd go big and just parse the whole damn lot.  And now if you're still wondering what this has to do with Star Control I can explain again.  I'm still using Smalltalk as the gameplay language except again I decided to go big and write my own implementation (I may have mentioned my reasons in a previous post - I forget).  I'm basically using Star Control Redux to drive the languages development which is why this is taking a little longer than at first anticipated.

For the really, really C++ guys (anyone?) here's the include tree for one of my .cpp source files, open the spoiler to see it 'cause it's kinda long.  Just read down to where you see windows.h and then give up.

(click to show/hide)

And for those who haven't seen it here's the title screen (pretty pictures are much more interesting than code).  Also all the stats screens on flickr as a slideshow. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/30553162@N04/sets/72157615899456786/show/)
(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3559/3392078044_0bb1cfe0d7_o.png)



Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Spurk on May 13, 2009, 11:02:41 pm
Dude, Smalltalk? Wow.

I remember Smalltalk from college, but I didn't see much interesting it, except for the old 1 := 2 insanity. Then again, the prof teaching that class also loved wikis, which I thought weren't going to go anywhere either.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Death 999 on May 14, 2009, 06:45:50 pm
Quote
I'm basically using Star Control Redux to drive the languages development which is why this is taking a little longer than at first anticipated.

That'd do it. I don't remember anything about why you're doing this. Why are you doing this?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on May 14, 2009, 09:14:30 pm
That'd do it. I don't remember anything about why you're doing this. Why are you doing this?

Because he is an awesome person. :)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on May 14, 2009, 09:59:59 pm
Because he is an awesome person. :)
Yeah, I can roll with that  ;D

Seriously though, um...  well... er... because.... Hey!  Look at that flying cycad!  Kcheersbyyeeee...






The only reason I have is that it seemed like a good idea at the time.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: nightshadow on May 22, 2009, 01:01:03 am
This is a beautiful project to say the least...

Keep up your great work!

I don't come here often, but when I do, I always get surprised by the tenacity of the Star Control universe fans... thanks man!


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on May 22, 2009, 02:11:49 am
Will the ships have 16 angles to them or more?
I know that as a remake they should only have 16, but I've always found it annoying that small ships could hide between the firing angles of the bigger ships.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: jaychant on May 22, 2009, 03:23:54 am
Will the ships have 16 angles to them or more?
I know that as a remake they should only have 16, but I've always found it annoying that small ships could hide between the firing angles of the bigger ships.

That kind of bothers me too. I think it would make more sense to rotate the image of the ship sprite based on its direction than to have 16 separate images for each direction. One of the games that I'm working on, Comet Fighter, uses this method, and it looks just fine (I have not found a single graphics artist that has been able to make rotations look any better than just rotating the ship). The only advantage I see to SC2's method is that you can have shading, which really isn't that important in space games anyway (it's REALLY dark in space...). Of course though, I have no idea how much more difficult it is to rotate an image in C than it is in Game Maker.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on May 22, 2009, 07:25:32 am
You can rotate one image and still only have 16 angles.
But I really hope there will be more.

But I'm not biased, I'm used to TW.
64 angles there.
Also when an enemy Ilwrath cloaks the camera focus on you so you don't know there it's coming from.
I'd really like to see those two things in a game that have a net version of the SC1 full game.
That's kinda my wish list - an enhanched version of SC1's full game.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on May 22, 2009, 02:56:29 pm
Thanks Nightshadow.

Just thought I'd mention that there are no prerendered images so I have no real angle restrictions.  Everything is 3D so the ships can bank into corners and rotate arbitrarily.  I could also add self shadowing if I were feeling brave (but I'm not).

The idea is this remake will include the stategic game from SC1 but I wasn't planning adding anything new so it's only the graphics and sound which will be enhanced.  Regarding the stategic game: guesst has done a bit of digging for the original star generation algorithm but with no joy so I'll probably just have to make it up.

As an aside, C provides no method for rotating images (or even drawing them) itself.  One has to either write those methods oneself or use an existing library.  I'm using DirectX, well, directly but many people have written wrappers to make it easier to use for 2D games.   Googling something like "rasterize sprite" should turn up some info on how it's done.

As a further aside, Direct2D (not 3D) is a hopeless and unusable pile of shit that must go and die quitely in a corner if it hasn't done so already.  Do not like.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Mormont on May 22, 2009, 05:31:58 pm
Giving ships more firing angles sounds good in theory, but it might really mess with game balance. Though there's no Druuge in SC1 (the ship that would probably benefit from it the most). But the dreadnought hardly needs any more help against the SC1 ships.

One thing I would love to see one day is a SC1 strategic mode with all the SC2 ships added in, with the ability to create both story scenarios like SC1 and custom teams like SuperMelee...I actually tried to start writing one a few years ago, before I realized I was in way over my head.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on May 22, 2009, 06:07:32 pm
More angles change game balance. I wouldn't say that it ruins it though.
TW had it, and I never felt that it's unfair when I was playing a small ship against a big one (and big ships get the most from that change).

It might make the skill required to beat a big ship with a small one higher, but I don't think it's that bad.
(Arilou vs Kzer-za, Umgah vs Chenjesu, etc).


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on May 27, 2009, 08:26:24 pm
I'm not sure why this thread is seeing so many hits recently - it's not where I primarily post news.  But, as it is: here's a dev shot of the Hierarchy victory screen.  It's (rather obviously) still a WIP, I've broken my materials renderer which is why there are no textures and the specular is off.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3318/3571022130_d4c9b52986_b.jpg)
(View image for a bigger  image).

Quote
One thing I would love to see one day is a SC1 strategic mode with all the SC2 ships added in, with the ability to create both story scenarios like SC1 and custom teams like SuperMelee...I actually tried to start writing one a few years ago, before I realized I was in way over my head.
Yeah, you and me both.  If someone models the SC2 ships it's a lot more likely to happen.  Utterly unsubtle hint.

Quote
More angles change game balance. I wouldn't say that it ruins it though.
I'm not overly worried about losing the exact game mechanics.  SC1 had a few balancing issues to begin with (http://starcontrol.classicgaming.gamespy.com/forum/index.php/topic,1661.0.html), so Im going to be making tweaks to gameplay anyway.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Bigryan on May 27, 2009, 08:46:10 pm
wow. some more fabulous art.

Using smalltalk may make things simpler.  I'm using strictly c++.  Kindof crazy, as I'm running into some memory issues.

Are you using smalltalk just to do some scripting? or is smalltalk going to be where the bulk of the the work is done?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on May 27, 2009, 09:38:58 pm
Oops, I forgot to mention that I made an unbelievably stupid and costly coding mistake in my Smalltalk interface implementation.  I know how to solve it but I'm still having a bit of a sulk about it so there's been a small change in plans.

In an effort to actually get something out *ever* I'm shelving Smalltalk until after I'm done with SC Redux which means all the gameplay will be written in C++.  This gives me time to work out a number kinks in my engine which is why I'm posting strange and broken dev shots again (the Ur Quan is not supposed to have glowing pink legs).

And as for C++ and memory issues, that's pretty much par for the course.  I've just (this evening) dug up a new and bizarre leak.  As I don't like fighting memory issues I sort of wrote my own reference counting memory manager (also Smalltalk needed it) but... if that memory manager leaks it doesn't help.   Fixing that brought my number of memory related test cases to slightly over 1800 (actually 1808) which probably shows that C++ and memory is generally an unhappy place to be.

ps:  Make sure you've turned on memory leak detection in DEBUG in whatever environment you code in.  It's invaluable.

[EDIT for scripting clarity]
The design so far has been that a scripting language (I finally chose a Smalltalk) must run all the gameplay.  The backing engine must be totally disconnected from the style of game I'm writing which would make it reusable for - say; off the top of my head - a Space Crusadish remake.  I'm trying to avoid the pitfalls of variously:  The Unreal 3 engine where the (retarded) scripting language is tied to closely to FPS gameplay; Torque Game Engine where too much of the engine functionality was moved to the scripting language making it slow (although there are work arounds); and RenderWare which is so damn general that one needs to basically write an engine on top if it anyway.

This whole engine writing lark is hard :(


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on May 28, 2009, 04:05:59 am
Why C++ and not C# or Java if you want to avoid memory leaks?
Garbage collectors are just for that, aren't they?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on May 29, 2009, 05:11:32 pm
Why C++ and not C# or Java if you want to avoid memory leaks?
Garbage collectors are just for that, aren't they?
Aye, this is another question that has a very long answer.  I'll aim for the abridged version.

I'm aiming for platform independence so C# was out straight off the bat as mono didn't exist back when I started.  Similarly Java was also still lurking on about version 1.4 (I forget exactly) and it was  *slow*.  Also neither language (although this applies across the board) had or has good support for DirectX and/or OpenGL.  I know about projects like Java3D etc... but they are all a bit... well... crap.

The need for a good 3D library made C++ the only choice for an engine.  Also C++ has been around for a while and it's pretty stable.  The last bug I found in Java was in 1.6.0._9 which is pretty recent.  :o.  Smalltalk is, just for interest, still about a decade older than C++.

Lua was, for a couple of years, my scripting language of choice because it's fast, easy to use and minimal.  The problem is it was too minimal and I was having writing a lot of library functionality around it.  I looked at Ruby but it's slow and has potential licensing issues.

I've a whole host more specific and technical reasons but that's it in a nutshell.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Bigryan on June 02, 2009, 07:50:00 pm
I thought of using java at one point too, with jogl, it's actually quite nice.

You also get multiplatform almost for free.

In the end i also settled on c++ just because it was more stable and seemed to be quicker.  Java was eating my processor.

There was also a lot more 3rd libs in c++.

I would love the garbage collection of java, but with jni native code you do still have worry about memory.  No getting around it.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on June 04, 2009, 01:39:36 pm
I thought of using java at one point too, with jogl, it's actually quite nice.

I would love the garbage collection of java, but with jni native code you do still have worry about memory.  No getting around it.

The big problem with going a Java only route is that JNI calls are expensive.  Very, expensive.  Using java to call, say, draw vertex for every single vertex alone would kill your app stone dead.  Being a bit more intelligent and drawing, say, 10000 verticies with a single JNI call is much better but any state change calls are still going to hurt.  Alot.

I really wish there was someway of telling Java (and as far as I know this is a Java issue not a JVM issue) that I'd like to do fast unsafe JNI calls because I'm willng accept the consequences of getting it wrong.  Alas this isn't possible.  However the GNU guys with GCJ using GNU's common whatever calling convention managed managed to do JNI calls almost as fast as doing a straight c++ call.  Unfortunately GCJ hasn't moved in years and seems to have died a quiet and unremarked death.  A pity because I liked it.

None of this gets around the fact that, yeah, one still has to manage one's own resources.  The garbage collector can't do that for one.

C++ FTW.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on June 09, 2009, 02:00:14 am
I know I'm only a very new programmer (fresh out of a C# and JAVA course) but it is a bit discouraging that I have NO idea what you are talking about most of the time.

What's a vertex? what's a vertices?
What's JNI? GNU? GCJ?

Should I be bothered that I don't know what all those things mean?
And most of your previous posts?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Spurk on June 09, 2009, 03:17:58 pm
Not much of a graphics person myself, but I do know Java, so I'll give quick answers.

Vertex, as you may remember from geometry, is a corner. In a cone, the vertex is the point that everything converges to. In a square, it's one of the four corners. Vertices is the plural of vertex.

JNI stands for Java Native Interface. Java is designed to be run against its own virtual machine, so that it can achieve that write-once-run-anywhere ability that lets you write a Java program on Windows and run it on Linux. Unfortunately that means you can't use any non-Java libraries in your program and you can't get access to the real machine that's running the virtual machine. So JNI is a way for you to be able to do that. It lets Java talk outside of its little box to the actual computer. JNI is not normally a preferred solution for a lot of things (because it is expensive and breaks the run-anywhere part).

GNU stands for GNU's Not Unix, which will make your head hurt if you think about it too long. It's a project to rewrite all of Unix into a free version. If this sounds like Linux, you're not wrong (Linux is sometimes called GNU/Linux), but the actual history is more complex and confusing. As much as Java is free to download and use, the GNU project decided to write their own version, calling it GCJ, the GNU Compiler for Java. I don't know too much about GCJ as Sun's Java Development Kit (JDK) is the de facto standard, and what I use for all my work.

To rephrase Dragon's last post, since Java3D is crap, he'd have to go outside Java's virtual machine for graphics, which would really slow things down because Java forces checks to make sure you're passing in and getting back what you think you're passing in/getting back. However (and I find this interesting), Dragon believes the overhead on making JNI calls is at the language level, not the virtual machine level, so it should theoretically be possible to make JNI calls that are much less onerous. Apparently GCJ had a good take on this problem as well, but the GCJ project seems to have not had much activity recently, so that's not a good sign. But even if JNI did work like he wanted, all his JNI stuff would still have to manage its own memory/resources. Java's garbage collector can't handle memory/resources allocated through JNI.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on June 09, 2009, 08:12:12 pm
Ta Spurk, that's it exactly (saved me from another long winded reply).

A bit more detail on the verticies thing.  In most 3D scenes everything is made out of triangles.  To draw a triangle one needs to 'draw' the 3 corners (vertices).  In OpenGL there is a method which 'draws' a vertex.  Once it's been called three times a triangle is actually drawn.

Aside: Even without involving JNI drawing each vertex individually is slow.  It's better to call a method (say drawTriangle) which takes three verticies at once.  However it's best to call a method which takes a lot of vertices (thousands) and draws all the associated triangles in one shot.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: CelticMinstrel on June 10, 2009, 07:59:26 pm
While I definitely like the idea of an SC1 remake, it strikes me that you're doing way more work than necessary. All the code for the melee combat is available from UQM are you using that? And the graphics are all there too.

I've occasionally thought about remaking SC1 with the help of the UQM code, but chances are it'll never happen.

Quote from: Dragon
Regarding the stategic game: guesst has done a bit of digging for the original star generation algorithm but with no joy so I'll probably just have to make it up.
You could try decompiling the original SC1 to assembly and trying to find the algorithm. Obviously you would need to know a lot about assembly code though to do that. Still, I think that'd be the ideal route to take.

Quote from: Dragon
I'm aiming for platform independence so C# was out straight off the bat as mono didn't exist back when I started.
I thought you said you were using DirectX? And Windows.h? Those are hardly platform independent.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on June 10, 2009, 11:05:26 pm
I'm really glad the project doesn't use UQM's code and graphics.
Better graphics and more angles for ships rocks.

But that's just me :)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: CelticMinstrel on June 10, 2009, 11:31:32 pm
Yet, that means it's a different game, though the premise at least is the same.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on June 12, 2009, 12:49:27 am
Dragon, those problems with vertices and JNI, that's just because you use 3D rendering right?
If someone were to use 2D images for the game's graphics, Java would've been fine?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on June 12, 2009, 06:28:48 am
While I definitely like the idea of an SC1 remake, it strikes me that you're doing way more work than necessary. All the code for the melee combat is available from UQM are you using that? And the graphics are all there too.

All of the ships in Dragon's remake are in 3D. If I've understood it correctly the engine is a 3D engine, and during melee the ships are just locked to a 2D plane. This makes them look pretty neat when they turn and stuff, but it also means that the UQM code is pretty worthless in this instance.

There used to be a tech demo up on RetroRemakes, but when the forum crashed it went the way of the dodo. I think I have it downloaded and I'll upload it for you when I have access/time, likely the beginning of next week.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on June 12, 2009, 09:30:42 am
Thanks, as it was only a tech demo (and I have nowhere to host it) I wasn't that bothered that it's not available anymore.  If you can dump it somewhere that would be great.  I seem to remember that bugs were found (and fixed) particularly regarding Windows Vista.  *twitch*

Java 1.6 out the box is quite capable of writing 2D games (I've run into full screen bugs in directx mode, but OpenGL seems to be fine).  That's using AWT straight. (Javas internal graphics library).  I'd imagine doing JNI calls out to your favourite 2D library would be fine also unless you have thousands and thousands of objects.

The idea behind a remake is that it must add to the original in someway - generally sound, graphics and/or updated controls.  Otherwise one could fire-up an emulator and run the game on that instead.  The gameplay must remain the same or be enhanced whilst keeping the spirit of the original.  I could write a strategy game like HomeWorld or whatever using SC ships but that would be a tribute to the SC universe rather than a remake.

As for being to much work - well - it depends on what one wants to achieve.

ps:  On the old RetroRemakes forum I document how I'd go about reverse engineering SC1's starmaps.  Unfortunately - as Luki said - that forum is no more.  I still have the plan should I need it however Zeracles has been volunteered to generate me star path connections so I should be Okay.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: UAF on June 12, 2009, 06:50:45 pm
Enhanced strategic game will be great.
The ability to play it over the net is, of course, the most obvious and the bestest enhancement.

A special ability to each ship will also be great (right now the only "spcial abilities" are the Arilou's ability to pass fortifications and the Ur-quan's ability to singlehandedly destroy them, IIRC).

And then add the SC2 ships...
*sigh*, yeah, I've been dreaming about that thing for a while now.
Hopefully Dragon's remake will answer my wishes, becase it'll be a while before I can try making my own version. And even then it'll only be 2D images salvaged from existing things.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: CelticMinstrel on June 12, 2009, 07:21:35 pm
A special ability to each ship will also be great (right now the only "spcial abilities" are the Arilou's ability to pass fortifications and the Ur-quan's ability to singlehandedly destroy them, IIRC).
Well, at least that means that both sides have a ship with a special ability.

But, what special abilities would you give each of the other ships?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Spurk on June 12, 2009, 07:50:26 pm
Actually, there were two special abilities per side:

Hierarchy:
Ur-Quan: instant besiege of fortifications
Mycon: full crew after every battle without recruiting from a colony

Alliance:
Arilou: fortifications do not hinder Arilou movement
Syreen: destruction of a Hierarchy colony gives the Syreen full crew

I had thought about what the SC2 races should get, if anything, if they played in an SC1 scenario. Since most ships don't get anything, I decided only a few should get special abilities. Here are my thoughts.

Kohr-Ah: Instant besiege (like Ur-Quan)
Chmmr: Instant besiege (like Ur-Quan)
Druuge: Full crew on an enemy colony destruction (like Syreen (but not quite as useful))
Utwig: Full energy on enemy fortification destruction (sort of like Syreen)
Slylandro: Er...

Well, I've had a number of thoughts on Slylandro. Since they're totally mechanical, it seems to make more sense for them to be able to recruit more crew on a mine, rather than a colony. Because in SC2 they're only a destructive force, I don't think I'd let them colonize, mine, or fortify planets. But because they use their destructiveness to replicate, I think I'd also make it so that when they destroy an enemy's colony, mine, or fortification, a new probe is created. (I've also considered making that the case for any battle they emerge victorious from, but I'm not as sure about that idea.) Obviously, if you exceed the maximum number of ships, than you wouldn't get an extra Probe, and you could always scuttle if you wanted to build a different ship from your starbase. I realize this is pretty radical compared to the way the rest of the ships work, but, then, that's true of the Probe in general.

So yes, if I were writing an SC2 version of SC1, that'd probably be the special abilities I'd give to SC2 ships and I'd leave the rest of the ships alone.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: CelticMinstrel on June 12, 2009, 08:55:47 pm
Um... I was thinking more about abilities for the remaining SC1 races, since that's what UAF was talking about...


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Spurk on June 12, 2009, 09:10:04 pm
I'm not sure I'd want to give every race a special, and I don't know what would make sense. I mean, sure, you could make the Ilwrath have an Arilou ability, but what would make sense for an Umgah? Or a Chenjesu? And you could say that an Earthling's point-defense means that it'd take out fortifications pretty easily, but that suddenly makes the Earthling a much stronger ship than it's worth.

And sorry if the SC2 stuff was tmi. I got the impression UAF was soliciting ideas for any ships, SC1 or SC2.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: CelticMinstrel on June 13, 2009, 12:13:25 am
Yeah, you're probably right...

And those ideas for SC2 ships are kind of interesting.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on June 13, 2009, 12:32:45 am
I'd really love to add the SC2 ships but unless somebody else models them for me it's going to be a bit of a wait.  I have an unfounded suspicion that adding the SC2 ships would unbalance the strategic game so they might be restricted to the melee game.  It's all a bit blue skies though.

I'm unlikely to add new special abilities - not because it's a bad idea - but  because I don't want to add anything new to the scope.  Balancing the updated ships to play similarly to the originals is going to be a chore as it is.

Still give me a prod when I'm done and remind me about this page.

...back to trying to get a demo out.  Or possibly sleeping.  I forget.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Draxas on June 13, 2009, 01:57:08 am
While having the SC2 ships for melee would be great, I think my biggest request would be to keep the melee freeform like in SC2. This way you can play battles in melee mode other than just Hierarchy vs. Alliance.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: jaychant on June 13, 2009, 02:28:19 am
Heh... Having hostile Slylandro Probes could potentially be quite fun. They could replicate and attack both the Hierarchy and Alliance.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: CelticMinstrel on June 13, 2009, 03:09:06 am
Well, I've had a number of thoughts on Slylandro. Since they're totally mechanical, it seems to make more sense for them to be able to recruit more crew on a mine, rather than a colony.
But so are the Mmrnmhrm, and they recruit at a colony. Though the Slylandro may be exceptional enough for this apparent discrepancy to make sense. The Mmrnmhrm may be mechanical, but their ships can carry crew of other races. I'm not sure the same is true about the Probes.

Because in SC2 they're only a destructive force, I don't think I'd let them colonize, mine, or fortify planets.
This makes sense.

But because they use their destructiveness to replicate, I think I'd also make it so that when they destroy an enemy's colony, mine, or fortification, a new probe is created. (I've also considered making that the case for any battle they emerge victorious from, but I'm not as sure about that idea.)
This makes sense too.

Also, the Probe should be a neutral ship, in that either side could have one... since they are after all sold by the Melnorme.

I have an unfounded suspicion that adding the SC2 ships would unbalance the strategic game so they might be restricted to the melee game.
Well, since each scenario specifies exactly which ships can be built, I don't think that would be a problem. If you add them, you still won't be able to use them in the original scenarios, only in new ones.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on June 14, 2009, 04:05:04 pm
One area where I am going to break from SC1 is the melee game.  Rather than just handing out the Alliance and Hierarchy fleets I want to do something more like the Super Melee.  Also I'm designing with more than two players in mind but that doesn't mean it'll actually happen though.

It slipped my mind that scenarios restrict ships so that's a good solution to the SC2 ships issue.  However inclusion of SC2 ships is still very up in the air.  If they are then having Slylandro probes as a chaotic 3rd side should work well.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: guesst on July 02, 2009, 12:50:11 am
Theories and pontifications be damned. I want to play something Dragon! Don't think about how it'll go, just make it work!

Says the guy who's been working on ASCIIpOrtal for months now.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on July 02, 2009, 05:30:52 pm
Heh, I don't think the pontificate can be damned, it's like one of the perks of the job or something.  But I tell you what if you release ASCIIpOrtal I'll release the demo of the StarMap.

But don't release it to soon or the UI will be missing


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on July 02, 2009, 08:09:00 pm
Quote from: me
But I tell you what if you release ASCIIpOrtal I'll release the demo of the StarMap.
Urk, I may be in trouble there as ASCIIpOrtal's looking pretty complete already (http://cymonsgames.retroremakes.com/asciiportal-update-video-2/).  :o


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Death 999 on July 02, 2009, 11:37:24 pm
Kohr-Ah: Instant besiege (like Ur-Quan)
Chmmr: Instant besiege (like Ur-Quan)
Druuge: Full crew on an enemy colony destruction (like Syreen (but not quite as useful))
Utwig: Full energy on enemy fortification destruction (sort of like Syreen)
Slylandro: Er...

I think Utwig ought to regenerate between combats naturally.

Here are my ideas for capabilities. Just throwing them around...

Kohr-Ah: can destroy colonies regardless of the presence of fortresses or defending ships OR 33% chance to destroy fortifications upon besieging, and successful besiege does not cost a move.
(
compare that to
Kzer-Za: 33% chance to destroy fortifications upon besieging; atuomatically destroy forts at end of turn.
So, both average 1 fortified system per turn, but Kohr-Ah's progress costs more moves, and it has the potential to rush ahead or stall
)
Chmmr: groups attacked by Chmmr engage in an order selected by attacking player; AND/OR groups attacking this arrive in random order
Druuge: can create a mine for 1 move if that's all it does this turn
Supox: can create a colony for 1 move if that's all it does this turn
Utwig: can create a fort for 1 move if that's all it does this turn
Melnorme: you can transfer precursor artifacts from a Melnorme trader
Slylandro: Can build Slylandro at the location of a Slylandro as if it were a Starbase; gain 1 RU for each kill of a ship, fortification, mine, or colony that it makes.
Thraddash: sustained afterburner: free move from friendly mines as if they were colonies
Pkunk: refill crew automatically if any of your colonies or other ships is destroyed
Zoq-Fot-Pik: can see planets from 1 hop away, including presence of but not type of precursor artifacts
Orz: capture mines rather than destroying

And since this is rather high density of features, I'd consider adding the following (optionally by scenario so you can have your 'pure' SC1 if you want)...

Shofixti: ground invasion: capture colonies rather than destroying
Earthling: Nuke launch: can attack unguarded map features (colonies, mines, starbases, forts) from 1 hop away as if it was there. Can't launch from inside enemy fortifications.
Mmrnmhrm: Cruising transformation: 2 Mmrnmhrm at the same location can move together, for 1 move point, into space not occupied by enemy ships or fortifications.
Yehat: can make extra fortifications on top of regular fortifications.
Chenjesu: DOGI  synergy with forts: If defending a fortification, the battle group has the option to wait behind the fortification rather than engage immediately

Umgah: free move after the first map feature it destroys on a turn, HAR HAR HAR
Ilwrath: Not visible on starmap until adjacent (now that it's not hotseat, we can do this!)
VUX: capture fortifications rather than destroying; only works on regular fortifications, not Yehat extra fortifications (I figure this is accomplished by limpeting them, coming alongside, boarding, and reprogramming)
Androsynth: extended blazer: if you move an Androsynth 3 hops in one turn, get 1 movement point (but Androsynth is still exhausted)
Spathi: if attacked, can make a move (spent against next turn's movement) to avoid combat


Also, I'd consider having energy stations which increase the total moves per turn of a side (each ship's max move is still 3). These would, like colonies, cost no move to leave. As a possible twist, they'd be totally automated, and so any ship can capture one for free rather than destroy it.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on July 03, 2009, 10:24:30 pm
Quote from: Death 999
...

Cool, I've pasted this into SCDB so I don't forget about it.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Megagun on July 15, 2009, 02:07:13 pm
Theories and pontifications be damned. I want to play something Dragon! Don't think about how it'll go, just make it work!

Says the guy who's been working on ASCIIpOrtal for months now.
Congrats for being slashdotted! :) (http://games.slashdot.org/story/09/07/15/0315237/ASCII-Portal-In-the-Works?art_pos=2)


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: psydev on April 07, 2010, 06:37:01 am
I was looking at the starmap on your flickr page (http://www.flickr.com/photos/30553162@N04/3665036882/) and wasn't sure if you just made this up or if it was actually a copy from an SC1 scenario. (Please tell me you've done away with the rotating 3d starmap!)

Anyway, I made a copy of one of the maps generated for the "First Encounter" scenario, if you want a reference of what maps actually look like in 2D. http://img265.imageshack.us/img265/7523/firstencounter.jpg  . There are no dead worlds in this scenario, just mineral and life worlds. Should be fairly self evident which is which.



Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Mormont on April 08, 2010, 04:22:45 am
Is the arena more like SC1 or SC2 in size? It's significantly bigger in SC2. A Dreadnought fusion bolt goes about a third of the zoomed-out screen while in SC1 it went a little over half. Which does affect game balance somewhat.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on June 24, 2010, 11:05:15 am
I was looking at the starmap on your flickr page (http://www.flickr.com/photos/30553162@N04/3665036882/) and wasn't sure if you just made this up or if it was actually a copy from an SC1 scenario. (Please tell me you've done away with the rotating 3d starmap!)

Anyway, I made a copy of one of the maps generated for the "First Encounter" scenario, if you want a reference of what maps actually look like in 2D. http://img265.imageshack.us/img265/7523/firstencounter.jpg  . There are no dead worlds in this scenario, just mineral and life worlds. Should be fairly self evident which is which.
Sorry, I missed this/these comments - I tend to keep the dev chatter on PnF so I don't check this thread very often  :-[

It's a real SC1 scenario, just a screenshot with the connectivity drawn in.  I haven't done away with the 3d starmap but it doesn't auto-rotate anymore - you move it with the mouse/game pad; sort of like the GeoScape in XCom.

Thanks for the pic, Zeracles has written me a sweet star position and connectivity generator.  It won't generate connectivity quite like that but it's pretty close.

Is the arena more like SC1 or SC2 in size? It's significantly bigger in SC2. A Dreadnought fusion bolt goes about a third of the zoomed-out screen while in SC1 it went a little over half. Which does affect game balance somewhat.
I haven't decided yet; I'll probably fiddle with it after each ships code is written.  I've already changed the balance by having the ships rotate smoothly so it's going to need a lot of play testing.  Fortunately someone else is helping me write a nice general AI library which will speed this up a l lot.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Meeboosa on January 27, 2011, 02:56:13 am
How is this project going? What is PnF?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Lukipela on January 27, 2011, 06:33:52 am
How is this project going? What is PnF?

The Pages of Now and Forever reside at www.star-control.com The site forum Star Control Discussion board at www.star-control.com/community is currently the most active SC forum. Dragon has a thread over there in the Mods section.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on January 28, 2011, 01:33:25 pm
How is this project going? What is PnF?
It's still going and it's completion is anywhere from nearly done to some-time-in-the-next-millennium depending what my next wild tangent is.   Of course it doesn't help that I've been distracted by *that* project.


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Admiral Zeratul on February 12, 2011, 01:24:10 am
I've had enough of this! When will we actually get something we can play and not merely talk about?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Culture20 on March 07, 2011, 06:34:09 am
I notice you mention a desire for cross-compatibility, but that the 3D is rendered via directx.  Any chance you're switching to opengl?


Title: Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished
Post by: Dragon on March 30, 2011, 02:50:22 pm
I notice you mention a desire for cross-compatibility, but that the 3D is rendered via directx.  Any chance you're switching to opengl?
Eventually, it's pretty far down the list; after the remakes release.  I'm still using an awful library that I wrote that basically wraps the DX9 fixed function pipeline.  My intent is to refactor it out the way so that I can switch to DX9 with shaders, DX 11 (someone else is working on that renderer) or OpenGL.  Currently all the nastiness has been contained in one class which is enough for SC:R.

In other news I  had all the SC1 ships flying around and playing nicely with the (test) UI this weekend.