A Strategic 4X Space Game

Got a project near completion? Got a project with lots of screens and media? This is the place. This is for nearly finished and Projects with lots of media.

A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby mahks » Sat Dec 14, 2013 1:47 am

Game overview :
  • 4X space game
  • Browser based, only runs in firefox
  • Closed Beta status
  • Basic 2d graphics
  • Strong focus on grand strategy & diplomacy
  • No action, not a RTS & no tactical control
  • Role play possible
Image

The manoeuvre element is the fleet. Fleets move between stars by an instantaneous jump, but then must wait while the jump engine re-charges. This slows down the pace of the game, giving you time to plan. It creates the feel of a turn based game, even though it is a persistent universe.

Image

Fleet movement may be automated.
  • Patrol routes may be created to look for enemies.
  • Gathering routes take minerals to stars with a refinery. This works kind of like railway tycoon.
  • Other routes may be configured to move new ships to the front, return the battle weary for R & R, etc.

There is an emphasis on diplomacy.
Much effort has gone into creating organic "situations" that evolve into diplomatic crisis. These come about from conflict between several realms of influence. These being political relationships, trade, military actions, resource access and a feudal hierarchy.

Image

Trade is encouraged by a mechanism whereby the number of types of minerals governs the efficiency of your refineries and thus your limits to production of assets. Since only a few mineral types are found locally you must trade with other areas to gain more mineral types.

The game is not played in "binges" (hours in a session) but in short play sessions. Think of a normal 4X that has its play session sliced into bits. This is by design, so that those with real lives may fit it into a busy schedule (or a fanatic gamer can play a session between all those other games) allowing them to play a deep, involving game even though "they have no time". Several people have interpreted this to mean it is a tick based game, it is not. Once your realm has grown, there is always things that need to be done, it is just not all time sensitive.

Fog of war is constant. If you have no ship or spy at a star you do not know what is there, you only know what was there last time you visited. This permits a "cat & mouse" situation, where cunning can win out.

Building assets takes a long time. This creates pressure to plan, as you cannot react immediately to a new threat by "popping out" fleets of new ships at a moments notice. You can build & assign additional builders to speed up a project, but there is cost there as well.

Image

A large selection of technologies are available that affect all aspects of the game. There is no "tech tree" you just research the areas you want an advantage in. you may choose to be mediocre in all or focus on a few that complement your overall strategic direction.

Image

There is a robust economic model that provides many ways to gain income and many ways to lose it. Taxation, tribute, piracy, export contracts, asset support, salaries are some of the factors.

Image

In the beginning you manage all aspects, but as your empire grows you can do less micro-management and automate repetitive tasks.

Image

The game progresses though stages; exploration, buildup, contact and then the core game play begins with diplomacy, trade & conflict.

There is a play through of a typical 1st session on the website. The game begins slowly as you are mostly exploring and colonising, so the video may be a bit boring. Any suggestions on how to present a "cerebral" game and not make the presentation boring? :? This slow start is intentional as the game is complex and is designed so that a new player is not overwhelmed and has time to get his bearings.

http://www.starlords3k.com

We need a few more play testers, pm me if interested.
All feedback is welcome.
Last edited by mahks on Tue Oct 06, 2015 11:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Image
Diplomacy, Trade & Conquest in the 4th Millenium

http://www.starlords3k.com
User avatar
mahks
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Nov 22, 2013 6:07 am
Location: Thailand
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 0 time

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby Jackolantern » Sat Dec 14, 2013 5:30 pm

Very impressive looking!

Quick question, though: Did you not test any on Chrome? If it works in FF, it shouldn't be too hard to get it working in Chrome as well, since they are both very standards-based browsers.
The indelible lord of tl;dr
User avatar
Jackolantern
 
Posts: 10893
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 6:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX
Has thanked: 22 times
Been thanked: 92 times
Blog: View Blog (1)

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby mahks » Sat Dec 14, 2013 6:11 pm

It will not run under Chrome as it is.

I would have to change much of the CSS to accommodate -webkit. I think there is some other things that may require a rewrite of sections of code too. Like the video tag, last time I checked Chome did not support it very well (but this may have been a few years back). Canvas may be another area of problem.

Since I have been able to ignore all cross browser issues, I suspect there would be a large leaning curve to get my head around all the inconsistencies. From reading all the moaning on dev sites regarding cross browser, I stand behind the decision to use a single browser. This is a very complex game from a coding point of view, which would amplify the cross browser problem. (in fact I don't think there are many HTML games of this complexity)

My only reservation in doing this is that some gamers seem to take issue with it. I don't really understand why. Gamers download games all the time, what is the difference between that and downloading a browser to play a game? I think those that complain may still be on IE, as anyone who uses Chrome is obviously over the "down load a new browser OMG" issue. And if they are still using IE, they probably don't have the curiosity or thinking skills needed to play my game...just kidding... :mrgreen:
Image
Diplomacy, Trade & Conquest in the 4th Millenium

http://www.starlords3k.com
User avatar
mahks
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Nov 22, 2013 6:07 am
Location: Thailand
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 0 time

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby Jackolantern » Sat Dec 14, 2013 7:36 pm

When people are moaning about cross-browser compatibility, they are really moaning about Internet Explorer. I completely understand not supporting IE for a complex web game. But I would think adding support for Chrome would likely just be an issue of adding those WebKit prefixes to the CSS. The video will likely work fine as-is, since Chrome supports the same formats. Canvas is standard and well-implemented between WebKit and Mozilla.

I am just saying this, because anytime you do not support a browser, you are limiting your audience. Few gamers use IE, so there is not a huge issue there (plus the issues to properly support IE oftentimes aren't worth it for highly dynamic client-side games). But what you have to keep in mind is that people are not willing to do much to try a browser game that they have only a passing interest in trying because they aren't familiar with it yet. Yes, once you get players engaged, they will do much more to keep playing. But I usually won't even give a new browser game more than 10 seconds to load, so I definitely wouldn't go download a new browser to try a game I don't even know if I would like or not. Plus, Mac users are less likely to have Fire Fox or Chrome installed because the browser that comes packed with OSX, Safari, is quite competent, unlike the one packed-in with Windows.

I am not saying this regarding being able to test it or not. As a web developer, I obviously have Fire Fox installed. I just mentioned it because of the audience limiting factor and because it is odd to see a Mozilla-only requirement considering how easy it is so support Chrome, Fire Fox, Safari and Opera if you support one of them (although obviously Opera is not much of a concern due to its tiny market share).
The indelible lord of tl;dr
User avatar
Jackolantern
 
Posts: 10893
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 6:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX
Has thanked: 22 times
Been thanked: 92 times
Blog: View Blog (1)

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby mahks » Sun Dec 15, 2013 10:51 pm

Just tried to check on percentage of use of browser brand.

Reports vary wildly. Some show IE far lower than I thought possible!

And Chrome seems to be way above where I thought it was.
Image
Diplomacy, Trade & Conquest in the 4th Millenium

http://www.starlords3k.com
User avatar
mahks
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Nov 22, 2013 6:07 am
Location: Thailand
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 0 time

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby Jackolantern » Mon Dec 16, 2013 12:15 am

Yeah, Chrome has really flipped the market share on its head. It is an extremely popular browser now and by most accounts, #1 in most western countries or possibly even the world, and IE is closer to the all-time low levels it was at when Netscape ruled the world in the late 90's than it has been in a long time. Of course, it will likely be a cold day in hell before IE hits the 1997 type levels (believe it or not, IE was around 5 - 10% in the last few years of the 90's) because that was before IE was packed-in with Windows.

Of course, you are right. Market share percentages vary wildly depending on who is giving the figure. This is because most reports are simply counting user agent strings that hit their site(s). You would likely get very different data comparing the browsers that hit ZDNet sites versus the Social Security .gov sites, for example.

There are a few organizations who try to go a bit further than this, and actually work off of workplace data reports, surveys, Windows market share reports, and some extrapolation. These probably get about as close to the real numbers as you can get, and I think this is a pretty good break down and summary of that data (although I think a lot of this is global, where China and India really off-set the values since IE still rules, particularly in China). But even then you get pretty different figures. Internet data company NetApplications lists IE as being the most popular browser in the world, but almost all the rest of the major Internet data analysis companies are in pretty close agreement that it is Chrome.

And then of course there is the quickly rising market share mobile browsers are gaining. Of course, that really is a totally different can of worms, and I don't at all think it would be trivial to create a mobile UI for your game. Maybe down the road if (when ;)) your game becomes popular it could be worth looking into a native app client for your game, but again, probably not worth worrying about that now.
The indelible lord of tl;dr
User avatar
Jackolantern
 
Posts: 10893
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 6:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX
Has thanked: 22 times
Been thanked: 92 times
Blog: View Blog (1)

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby Nerfintas » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:36 am

and you created this game with what soft?:D if not secret
User avatar
Nerfintas
 
Posts: 54
Joined: Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:01 pm
Has thanked: 0 time
Been thanked: 0 time

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby Jackolantern » Mon Dec 16, 2013 4:21 pm

Nerfintas wrote:and you created this game with what soft?:D if not secret


I would actually assume it is from-scratch, as it doesn't resemble anything I have seen before. No idea on the graphics, though.
The indelible lord of tl;dr
User avatar
Jackolantern
 
Posts: 10893
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 6:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX
Has thanked: 22 times
Been thanked: 92 times
Blog: View Blog (1)

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby mahks » Mon Dec 16, 2013 5:23 pm

All coded from an editor called UltraEdit very configurable.
Firebug for firefox a huge help.
For db used DBtools up until last year now Mysql Workbench.
Used Corel for graphics.

I am self taught, so my code is constantly getting redone as I learn how I should have done things, had I known what I was doing. :(
I would not class my self as a "good" programmer, the game got to where it is from perseverance rather than skill.
My lack of artistic skill has been a major problem. Any graphics that look good were done by a friend, her site is here : https://mythspinner-studios.net/wordpress/
Image
Diplomacy, Trade & Conquest in the 4th Millenium

http://www.starlords3k.com
User avatar
mahks
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Nov 22, 2013 6:07 am
Location: Thailand
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 0 time

Re: A Strategic 4X Space Game

Postby Jackolantern » Mon Dec 16, 2013 9:21 pm

I think the graphics work for it, since it reminds me of some of the 90's PC games when 4X games were actually mainstream in PC gaming, and some of the genre's giants were born. It will likely give a good shot of nostalgia to fans of the genre :)
The indelible lord of tl;dr
User avatar
Jackolantern
 
Posts: 10893
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 6:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX
Has thanked: 22 times
Been thanked: 92 times
Blog: View Blog (1)

Next

Return to Project Showoff Tier II

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron

x