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News: Paul & Fred have reached a settlement with Stardock!

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1  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: GDC 2015 on: July 06, 2015, 08:24:14 pm
Sorry.  I've been 'far away' -- if not in body, at least in mind.  But that mind largely agrees with what you say.  We intentionally made the bootstrapping process take some time and effort so that you would appreciate when that was no longer the case.

As for how we move forward on a successor, we have some ideas, but our day jobs keep these from gaining substance at the moment; however, just as we did before, I think that we will create something we love.  We hope many others will love it too.
2  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: GDC 2015 on: January 13, 2015, 04:45:35 pm
It will be recorded and stored in the GDC Vault, which is only slightly more impregnable than the Syreen's.  We will definitely have a powerpoint deck and some (maybe only one?) video segments to supplement our talk.  I don't know yet whether or not we are allowed to release that material, or if it belongs to GDC.

Also the current description of the talk is a bit misleading.  We will definitely talk about Star Control 1, but will focus more on Star Control 2, because we think that is of more interest.

In our usual, lazy way we are crowd-sourcing (to help us with our talk).  It worked for writing and music in Star Control 2 and we're going to that well once again.  Over the years Paul and I have talked a lot from our perspective about our development and we thought to include perspectives of others who also contributed, in order to make the presentation a little fresher.
3  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / GDC 2015 on: January 13, 2015, 02:03:32 am
Happy New Year!

Paul and I are giving a session, Classic Game Postmortem:  Star Control, at GDC this year, and we wanted to acknowledge and thank individuals and organizations that have been a part of keeping Star Control alive these many years.

What's the best way to give this project credit?  Are there any particularly wacky stories we should relate?

Also are Dan Nicholson and Riku Nuottajarvi still around this site?

4  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: iPhone port almost complete, some Q's maybe someone can help with... on: October 31, 2009, 02:00:20 am
Paul has an I-Phone (I use a Blackberry).  He would love to see something when it's available ( or

Dogar and Kazon are watching!
5  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: A star control 1 remake that may actually get finished on: October 22, 2008, 07:11:17 pm
Great work!  I'm watching.  No pressure  Grin
6  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: IRC chat with Toys for Bob on 2007-06-13 on: May 22, 2007, 01:19:54 am
We'd all love to hear your explanation of the polar bear theory.

Paul's reality is often indistinguishable (to him) from his dream states and one day he actually tried to convince me that polar bears are close relatives of weasels.  And of course everybody but me has heard of the dreaded polar weasel.

How did the threading work on the 3DO and on the PC.

The 3DO had a threading library.  I wrote my own for the PC, because none such existed.

What is your favorite piece of music in SC2?

Probably the Yehat.

I have one--do you guys have pretty clear mental pictures of the various alien races, outside of what you can see in the in-game animations?

Clear enough.  Why do you ask?

There's probably a more tactful way to say this, but I'd really like to know how you went from making brilliant original games like Archon and Star Control to licensed kid's games like 102 dalmatians. What happened?

0xDECODE is pretty much right on.  We have chosen this as our career and we prefer to have food on the table.  Games cost so much to make these days that originality was one of the first casualties.  Paul and I are still biding our time.
7  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: IRC chat with Toys for Bob on 2007-06-13 on: May 18, 2007, 06:49:07 pm
Wow!  I can see that Paul and I are going to need some preparation.  I don't want to diminish the IRC event and I don't want people to feel left out, if moderation is necessary.  So if there are some points of discussion that make sense to get out of the way before the chat, I will do my best.  Otherwise Paul, and I and probably Chris Nelson will see you in June!
8  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: UQM painting on: April 28, 2005, 12:46:24 am
I like it too.
9  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: ATTN Fred: Groombridge dialog on: August 05, 2003, 06:57:46 am
Let's end some of this speculation.  Paul and I would enjoy this project, but -- and it's a big but -- we are currently so very busy.  If you know anything about us and our creation of SC2 you know we wouldn't be satisfied with a rushed job or something that is jarringly out of place -- so the timetable is indeterminate and we would definitely want to take meep-eep (or equivalent) up on his offer to bear much of the integration load.

And, yes, Yehat_Sympathizer, your crass, material offers were indeed offensive, but at great personal sacrifice we would be willing to relieve you and any similarly encumbered being of these secular chains so that you would not be tempted in the future to make the same offer to less enlightened persons.
10  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Just wondering. on: May 26, 2003, 05:58:59 am
Personally I imagine it must feel somewhat odd to have co-created a game over a decade ago which was rather popular in its time, but now is mostly forgotten by the gaming world as a whole and is now only idolized by a relatively tiny group of die-hard gamers who still cherish the game and consider you as the co-creator to be worthy of worship.

Or maybe it's just amusing.

I wouldn't know.

It's definitely odd.  We are proud of what we did close to 11 years ago, but we didn't realize what we were doing at the time.  Our intention this time around was not to receive worship but to reward the die-hard fans for their devotion and maybe keep alive something that is dear to us.

P.S.  I didn't choose the 'TFB God' moniker -- it was assigned -- and if you knew me you would know I never would.
11  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: How was the Starcon2 Universe created? on: May 22, 2003, 11:19:48 pm
The locations of the stars were set by Paul so that he could cluster and designate stars in non-random ways.  But from there virtually all of the planetary systems and their planets, moons, minerals, and lifeforms were generated randomly.  Always from a consistent seed, though, which meant they could be exactly reproduced.

There were never more than 32 deposits of minerals or 32 individual life forms on any planet so that when you picked one up I just had to mark a bit in a 32 bit integer reflecting your collection of that item and that would get saved with a saved game.

Once the universe was set we would sprinkle in the story items (like the Aqua Helix, etc.) in places we found interesting.

12  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: FF & PR3 ship ideas on: April 30, 2003, 10:23:52 pm
The gold guy (as were all the ships on that page) was drawn by Leonard Robel whom we assisted in getting started in the game business.  Sorry to disappoint but the gold guy was just an elaborate doodle while the other ships are indeed Zoq-Fot-Pik ancestors.
13  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: FF & PR3 ship ideas on: April 29, 2003, 10:44:45 pm
The big ships in the upper left and lower right were designs for the Hierarchy and Alliance starbases respectively in Star Control 1.  We actually had them playable in the strategy game whenever you attacked an opponent's starbase.  The Alliance base had a swiveling turret which could either fire or reinforce sections of its shield.  They were immobile like the Samatra and turned out to be not terribly fun to play so we excised them.

The littler ships were just random designs (many by Greg Johnson of Starflight fame).  I don't think we ever gave any of these much thought as to what their capabilities would be.
14  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Off topic with apologies. on: February 06, 2003, 11:05:31 pm
Hello all,

I apologize for the misuse of this forum, but TFB is looking to hire another programmer and I thought I would give the members of this forum some advanced notice.  Something much like the following information will appear on Gamasutra:

   Console experience (PS2, GameCube, XBOX in order of importance)
   Self-motivated, flexible, self-managing, problem solver
   Willing to work with middleware as well as in-house tools to accelerate the development cycle
   Capable of and interested in working on a broad range of game systems (e.g. AI, collision, rendering, etc.).
   Ability to work closely with artists and designers as well as the programming staff

Useful Experience:
   3D programming
   Intrinsic Alchemy
   3DSMax, Maya

Any inquiries should be sent to

15  The Ur-Quan Masters Re-Release / General UQM Discussion / Re: Strange discoveries in space on: February 03, 2003, 06:31:59 pm
well, I was nosing to through the role-playing resource (that came with the original game, I believe), and found these two entries:

Sculptoris Beta: (Suffered Mysterious Solar Implosion)

Corvi Alpha: (Victim of Intersteller Fatigue)

what I find most interesting is the mention of Intersteller fatigue, the first out side of SC3, I believe.  I guess the designers weren't totally on crack, then.

I got a good laugh out of this.  Here is a great example of turning a negative into a positive.  We actually didn't realize we had omitted some stars until we were making the cluebook shortly after the game released.

Instead of admitting our error we just concocted some simple, cryptic fates for the missing stars and let the reader's imagination run with it.
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