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Author Topic: Why it'll never happen.  (Read 11936 times)
guesst
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Why it'll never happen.
« on: December 01, 2006, 11:21:28 pm »

I'm feeling friggen low right now, so I'm going to vent and express why I think (right now) there's no hope for us geeks to continue to cling to the sides of this derilict idea.

First of all, what space game do you know has been financially successful? I'll bet you can't name 3. Financially successful genre's have people. In that StarControl is perhaps the closest to doing this with the pilot pictures, but otherwise you spend an awful lot of time stairing top down at a spaceship which, generally, does not seem attract.

It is my opinion that this huge flaw will cause this otherwise fantastic game to go nowhere fast. I'll admit, UQM has sparked my hope from time to time, but we've been on 0.5 for coming up on a year now. To say this project has platued is a bit of an understatement. Somehow the project just doesn't inspire the talented skill base that could make things happen. On the other hand, Megaman is constantly inspiring fan made sequels. Many of these project don't make it as far as this project has, but many of them make it to an advanced level of cool.

Oh, gawd, I'm so depressed.
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2006, 11:50:07 pm »

What "derelict idea"? Space games in general? Or Star Control? If the former, that's only because of the way the market's swung for the moment. If the latter, I couldn't disagree more.

As a matter of fact, I *can* name three - Elite, Escape Velocity, and the upteen-million MMORPGs that are all alike. And technically, I don't recall hearing that Starflight or Star Control failed (past SC-Not-3).

While it is possible that UQM might take a while to get to the finish line, that was no surprise to begin with. The game's been developed since 2002. People have lives -- particularly the people most likely to bring UQM to a finished level. Megaman also isn't particularly difficult to clone -- a game to the level of SC2 is, particularly if you want to do it right.

In the long run, I expect space games will hang in, as they always have. They may not be succeeding to quite the same level as to first-person-shooters, but they aren't going anywhere very fast.

- Bob
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2006, 11:56:19 pm »

How about this;

You have Melee as a factor of the game, not the main meat. For example...


Let's say we have an RPG or something, like a gaiden to the storyline, involing various alliance races as the major characters. Add the actual element of skill (Like choosing limbs to target in attacks, maybe inside a tactical based-battle system with range and so on) and have lots of nice graphics. From here on add the Super Melee, add multiple ship combat, with objective based missions, also tweak around with the SCNot3's Colony system, make it shinier, make it more interactive and make it more interesting. Then add other other stuff such as mini-games and so on, basically diversify the game out, add cool stuff in (hey, let's face it, new gamers these days seem to have a low attention span) and the cracking script from the previous game, and your set. A new UQM game would fit well onto the DS in my eyes...

Of course they actually need a larger fan-base, and what better way to do it than make fan-games? Can't be hard, right? Maybe not, as it'll take hellava time to work on the coding, etc. I'm a sprite artist, and I'm willing to work with anyone on a Star Control fan-game if they want to work on, 2 years experience Cheesy.

3 succesful Sci-Fi games, mmm... Good point, thing is though, the market is getting saturated with Fantasy stuff, so Sci-Fi could have it's breakthrough now, well, here goes;

Halo

Metroid Prime

Star Ocean

X3 (and other's in the series. Hey, this makes four...)

Gundam (meh, anime, make this a 1/2)

Half Life 2 (Less space, but aliens are in the mix)

Raiden

Ikuraga

Gradius (3 shooters in a row, same principle of gameplay, still fun to play)

BIG ONE SOON TO BE RELEASED:

SPORE


Ok, to back up the whole Sci-Fi vs. Fantasy thing...

Many, many gamers I know are sick to death of killing so many slimes to level up. A lot of them would like to play games that revolve around the player's skill, not the patience. As the general trend tends to be, Fantasy games relly more on skill than Sci-Fi, as Sci-Fi normally has more shooters, strategy, and so on, that are reliant on the consumer's level of play. Of course, I'm really only refering to Jap-edival games, which tend to follow this cliche, the only ones I've seen different of are the Ys and Zelda stuff...

 

« Last Edit: December 02, 2006, 12:00:22 am by Neonlare » Logged

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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2006, 01:31:27 am »

Asteroids, Xwing, Tie-Fighter, Xwing vs. Tie Fighter, WC series, Starcraft, World of Starcraft (would be successful), Dozens of FPS...
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2006, 02:29:11 am »

"First of all, what space game do you know has been financially successful?"

Uh you're kidding right? Mr. Glass -half - empty...?

Please define "financially successful".

Here's a flash game to cheer you up.

http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/space
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meep-eep
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2006, 05:01:16 am »

First of all, what space game do you know has been financially successful? I'll bet you can't name 3.
So that's how you would categorise "Star Control"? As a "space game"? I don't think the location where a game takes place really matters. What Star Control is about is exploration, solving mysteries, interacting with aliens, humor, improving your flagship, and fighting melee battles.
Agreed, there aren't many successful games like that; but that's because there aren't many games like that, period. Toys for Bob have always aspired to create original games that cannot easilly be fit in one genre. This is not a weakness. The most successful games aren't clones of other games.

(That said, there have been plenty of hugely popular games that take place in space (I don't know how much money they made though). From Trade Wars to Master of Orion to Privateer to the Star Trek games.)

Quote
Financially successful genre's have people. In that StarControl is perhaps the closest to doing this with the pilot pictures, but otherwise you spend an awful lot of time stairing top down at a spaceship which, generally, does not seem attract.
Bull. If this were your only remark I wouldn't even have bothered responding. Most games have people. It should not be surprising, because real life is about people, and games need to be played from the perspective of something.
So yes, there will be a lot of (genres of) games that are about people, and hence there will be a lot of successful games that are about people.
But I see no indication that games that aren't about people are less successful. Just look at all the RTS games, god sims, shmups, puzzle games, dance games, flight simulators, and racing games, to name a few.
(Also, a big part of UQM (and the most important part imho) is about people, namely the conversations you have with them.)

Quote
It is my opinion that this huge flaw will cause this otherwise fantastic game to go nowhere fast. I'll admit, UQM has sparked my hope from time to time, but we've been on 0.5 for coming up on a year now. To say this project has platued is a bit of an understatement.
You could look at it from another way: how many Open Source games, run by a few people in their spare time, do you know that are still active after 4 years?

Quote
Somehow the project just doesn't inspire the talented skill base that could make things happen. On the other hand, Megaman is constantly inspiring fan made sequels. Many of these project don't make it as far as this project has, but many of them make it to an advanced level of cool.
That's not all that surprising, considering there are many more people familiar with Megaman than there are those who know Star Control. How many official Megaman games have been made now? Would 10 be an overstatement?
« Last Edit: December 02, 2006, 05:06:41 am by meep-eep » Logged

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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2006, 09:51:54 am »

How many official Megaman games have been made now? Would 10 be an overstatement?

Ten Megaman games would be a very big understatement. Similarly, the Castlevania series has a fair number of games under its belt. Both are very successful franchises, and have at least two things in common that gives them an advantage over Star Control:

1: Both have had a roughly 5 year head start on Star Control. Any franchise that has managed to be successful for this long is naturally going to have a larger fan base.
2: Their products have had a wider viewing audience, mainly due to what systems they were released on (NES being both franchises' jumping point).

In the case of Star Control, it has had releases on PC (for DOS) and the 3DO. While both systems were technically capable of handling the games TFB produced, at this point in time the PC did not have nearly as big of a gaming audience as the then-extant SNES or Genesis. I suspect that if the enhanced SC2 had made its way to the Playstation (which was just around the corner) in addition to 3DO, it could only have increased the awareness of the game that much more.

With the porting of UQM to modern operating systems, we are effectively doing something to alleviate issue 2. There may be a lot of Megaman and Castlevania homebrew clones out there, but none of them can claim to having the original game logic available at their fingertips. Advantage: us.

With the code available to everyone, it is possible for those with the knowledge to port and modify the game in ways which the Creators had not originally conceived! Net Melee is a prime example of this. Once this is brought to the "stable" 0.6 release, we will have nothing (bandwidth notwithstanding) stopping us from getting our friends in whatever remote corner of the world to try what is quite possibly the simplest, most addictive piece of fun conceived for any gaming platform! This will eventually cause some to wonder what that "New Game" option is all about, which can only end up bringing more converts to our cause.

I remember someone here theorizing that perhaps the reason the UQM source was released in the first place was to get enough attention brought back to it so that TFB would be able to get the green light for making another one. I'm not sure I entirely believe it. Regardless of that, even though I haven't bought a dedicated gaming system since the N64, nor a game for my PC since Diablo 2, I would be compelled (Dnyarri* style) to plunk down whatever price was necessary for some new Star Control goodness.

* /me adds the word "Dnyarri" to Firefox's dictionary.
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2006, 05:43:21 pm »

guesst, I know how you feel.  It's been so long since April 16, and now that Toys For Bob finished Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam, I'm hoping that Alex does in fact propose Star Control to Activision as he wrote in his newspage.  I'm just worried, since there hasn't been a new posting on the TFB website since october 18.  But that doesn't stop me.  Alex mentioned that he is a very busy person; right now, I still continue to write him letters about Star Control,  and hope that he'll be making a post very soon...

Right now, we must continue to show our support, and continue writing.  Right now, TFB has placed their foot in the door once again because of the Tony Hawk racing game, and they're starting to gain popularity once again, and they're about to have an opportunity to propose a Star Control game to Activision.

I have Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam, and I saw the TFB intro before the game started, and do you know what I heard?  I heard the Ur-Quan theme, and the image of the TFB rocketship flying through, then the music switches over to the Orz theme, and displays the words "Toys for Bob".  Their intro theme has a star control written all over it!

If it weren't for rabid and dedicated science-fiction fans, Star Trek wouldn't have lasted as long as it did, and the world would be a much different place.  They wrote letters, and they never stopped until they got what they wanted.  We can't let them forget about Star Control too!

Alex asked for our help, and he cannot leave him hanging by himself.  If we continue to support his cause, no matter the outcome, we know that we did our best.
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2006, 07:21:50 pm »

I would be compelled (Dnyarri* style) to plunk down whatever price was necessary for some new Star Control goodness.
I agree.  I know I'd even buy it as presents for people who wouldn't be in the line with me waiting.  Heck, if it were for Wii, I'd have a reason to buy a Wii...  And truck drivers wold deliver more games and Wiis, and people would make (a tiny amount) more money making the Wiis, and they'd spend their money...  See? Star Control drives the World-wide economy.  It's TFB's altruistic duty to fight for a new SC.   Grin
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2006, 07:49:03 pm »

Wait, the Intro has a reference to SC? Post a vid pleeeash! Cheesy
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2006, 08:59:01 pm »

Quote from: Neonlare
Wait, the Intro has a reference to SC? Post a vid pleeeash! Cheesy

Here's the video:

http://video.google.ca/videoplay?docid=3642686138835120664&hl=en-CA

Sorry about the bad quality; I used a cell phone camera, and I don't have any tv tuners or RCA-USB devices...   If anyone can find a more permanent way of storing it, please let me know.  I should try storing it on google video or youtube.

EDIT: I made a more permanent link.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2006, 08:16:23 pm by batman4050 » Logged

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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2006, 11:48:51 pm »

Thank you, Star Control liiiiiiiiiives!
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #12 on: December 03, 2006, 12:31:05 am »

Would Doom, Halo and Half-Life ,three hugely successful game franchises, fall into the category of "space game" ? Just curious... Wink
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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #13 on: December 03, 2006, 03:47:03 pm »

Well this generated a good discussion, and I'm feeling much better now, overall. (That silly little game helped a bit.) But I still don't hold out much hope for StarControl's future.

See, when I said space games, I meant games where you're player icon is a space ship. Any game where you're stareing at the back of a spaceship will be, I argue, financially less successful that one where you're looking at humans or humanoid creatures at any given moment. So, no Halo and Half-life don't count. The attract is just greater. The few acceptions in my mind of truely financially successfull games (the sort of financial success that will convince Accolade to back another game) IMHO are:

Star Fox
X-Wing (series)
StarCraft

And that's it. The rest of your suggestions have people as their central figures. No X-Wing, the only reason that did well was it was franchised from Star Wars and it's old. But StarCraft and StarFox were two that I don't think anyone saw comming as far as the level of success they've had. They totally break the mold, you're not looking at people for the most part, but they still have the attract and made it big. (Although one still wonders why Blizzard hasn't franchised StarCraft more.)

But StarControl never saw that sort of success and it's no wonder Activision is unsupportive about giving us another one.

Besides the fact, and here's another gripe, even if one came out would I want to play it now? I'm busy, busier than I was when I was 12. I don't have time to play UQM right now, so would I play it if it had an official TFB story?

...

Ah, who am I kidding. I'll just quit work.

PS. And hearing TFB kao-tao to SC2 in their bumper is definiately encouraging.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2006, 03:49:50 pm by guesst » Logged

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Re: Why it'll never happen.
« Reply #14 on: December 03, 2006, 04:59:09 pm »

Quote
But StarControl never saw that sort of success and it's no wonder Activision is unsupportive about giving us another one.

Besides the fact, and here's another gripe, even if one came out would I want to play it now? I'm busy, busier than I was when I was 12. I don't have time to play UQM right now, so would I play it if it had an official TFB story?
Activision has never stated anything saying that shows whether or not they actually support Star Control ("We currently do not have any information about Star Control", source).  They just didn't want to say anything at that time, since TFB was working on Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam at the time.  We still have a chance that TFB will propose Star Control, and Activision will accept.  They're well respected, and Activision has to listen; plus with all our fan mail, nobody can ignore thousands of e-mails from fans like us.

We have time to read this forum; that doesn't mean that we don't have just as much time to play a new Star Control game.  Maybe when we watch TV, and a commercial comes up, we can take a few minutes to play Star Control.  Just like any other game.

As for success, we have to keep in mind that the video game market was crowded in the 90s, with the 3DO, atari, dreamcast, game boy, etc.  Accolade was involved, and they lost quickly, because of non-star-control-related issues.  With Activision now in the competition, Star Control will jump up and everyone will play this new space game that nobody has ever copied.

As for whether or not you would actually play it, of course you would!  If you downloaded UQM, and posted on the forum, and wondered every now and then about Star Control, you would buy this one, and show your support!  I know I will.

"One man can summon the future, but what happens to that future if that man does not live to see it himself?" - Star Trek
« Last Edit: December 03, 2006, 05:06:18 pm by batman4050 » Logged

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