Monthly Archives: July 2007

New server and introducing Tycoon Games!

In past 2 days I upgraded to a new server (again)… actually was like a forced upgrade since my hosting changed datacenter, anyway now I got a even slightly more powerful server so I’m happy. I’m not too happy about the fact that on the new one I have troubles with some php scripts, like the contact form on my main site… so if you had problems, just email me directly (the email is on the same page as contact form anyway!).

I also thought a bit about the future of my games, and decided to start a new site called “Tycoon Games“. Why that decision? For several reason. First of all, originally I made Winter Wolves only with sports / simulation games in mind (UBM, The Goalkeeper, USM1-2). Then I slowly moved to rpg games like Magic Stones, but all are quite “casual” oriented.

Instead I felt the need to create another site, featuring really niche games. Like the upcoming Supernova 2, that will be put on that site (even if I am making it as always, without any external help). And I plan to make more wargames or complex strategy/simulation games.

Another difference is that on that site I’ll sell using as base currency the eur instead of the usd. Before you scream in horror, it’s actually a good news because I’ll keep prices lower, so even people buying in USD will find the games there not more expensive than usual.

That’s all for now – I’m still working on both Supernova 2 and Tower of Destiny, even if during summer I’m a bit less productive… 😉

Supernova 2: starsystem and resources

I’ve implemented the starmap, with nice animations of the stars blinking, and dotted lines to show the possible route you can take to conquer the neutral or enemy starsystems. It turned out quite nicely I think, it is still quite easy to look at but also dynamic, flashy 🙂

I made my decision about resources: it will be based on only one value that is population limit. Every starsystem will have N planets, and each one of them will have a max population capacity, depending on the type (I’ll have various planets like arid/desert, gas, barren, etc). So how it will work? you’ll be able to assign a certain percentage of the population to specific task/jobs. Like recruiting soldiers, officers, scientist, engineers, etc. The more you have in a particular job, the greater is the effects. For example lot of population allocated to be scientist, and your research will go faster, and so on.

Then you can use engineers to extract material from minerals. I thought to make it limited, but wouldn’t make much sense, so that resource will be unlimited, but in some way constrained by the max population/amount of % you have assigned to engineers.

So let’s say that 15billion are engineers, and each billion extract 10 tons of material. Then you’ll go in the build menu and there you can build stuff with the material. A new unit type factory could cost 150 tons for example, a new kind of civilian building another 50 tons, and so on. It will be all global, so you don’t actually build single starships, but more like you build research lab or prototypes. The once the ship is working, you can use it on the battlefield.

Then in the battlefield part there will be a way of building single ships of all types directly on the battle, but I’ll think about it later when it’s time to program the fight itself. I have already everything planned though 🙂

Supernova 2: resources allocation

Today I was playing with the resources screen. It will be one of the 3 main screen of the management part of the game. They are: Resources, Galaxy Map and Build.

In resources you have to distribute your resources to the various field, in percentage. The total percentage will be 100%, and leaving unused resources give no advantage.

I thought about using a finite-resource system. I did some experiments though and doesn’t seem a good idea because it could lead to bad gameover and frustration for the player. So the resources will be unlimited, but will have a rate per turn.

For example if you control 1 starsystem you’ll have 15million of minerals and 20million of population grow each turn (just random numbers), while if you control 2 you’ll have a higher amount. So conquering new starsystem will only increase the production/research/population growth each turn – but you won’t be forced to conquer new ones because your resources are about to end.

In any case in terms of gameplay won’t change much – the more starsystem you own, the stronger you become. So the only difference is that you won’t run out of raw materials to produce units or out of space to grow population, that would be a bit strange since we talk about whole starsystems and not even just “one planet” 😀

The game will be more about balancing between research, military, production and population. I need more powerful military units, or more population? I need more scientist to research or more engineers to increase production? that sums up the core of the management part of the game.

Supernova 2: Select your faction!

The select you faction screen is done 🙂 not much work, but had to render nice backgrounds for the 2 factions (Blue Army and Blood Legion) and their leader. Sometimes coding is like paiting. When you had the inspiration, you make very big steps in so few time!!! today I’ll finish the game setup screen. You can see an almost finished screenshot below:

If you click to enlarge it, you can see the main options that will be in the game. You’ll have 3 winning conditions:

  1. Galaxy Conquest: the factions that controls more than 75% of the whole galaxy wins the game.
  2. Kill Leader: it is possible to kill the enemy leader in battle to win the game. If disabled, the enemy leader will always be able to escape from battles.
  3. Technology Race: first one to discover the “Secret of Omniscience” technology wins the game.

Of course, if you completely destroy all the enemies you win anyway 🙂 but that was obvious.

The galaxy settings on the rights instead:

Galaxy Size: A larger galaxy will have increased travels costs thus delaying your encounter with enemy’s forces and will make the match last longer.
Planets Density: Planets density reflects how many planets each star system has. Lots of planets means bigger resources, few planets means less resources.
Minerals Planets: A high percentage of minerals planets will reduce your military and building costs.
Habitable Planets: A high percentage of habitable planets will help your population grow faster and increase your technology research speed.

I’m very happy with the results. As I said, this will not be a ultra-complex strategy game, but not a simplistic one either. Those settings should be enough for a long replayability of the title!

Now I’m off programming the main game interface. This will take more than a couple of days to finish!!

New game on development: Supernova 2

The picture above is the main title of another game I started to develop in the last few days. Don’t worry, Tower Of Destiny is still in production, but since I am making the editor, will take surely much more time so I thought to alternate it with the development of another kind of game (to take a break from long rpg-coding session!).

It will be the sequel to Supernova: Galactic Wars, but this time will be a 100% strategy game (more like a wargame to be honest). It is a “galaxy conquest” kind of game, but the simulation part will use a macromanagement system, so you don’t have to deal to every single planet, even if you’ll have the data of every planet accessible.

For those of you brave enough to have played Master Of Orion 3 – the game won’t have all that depth of data. Instead will let you take “global” decisions, using all your resources at once, using percentage distributions. I’m still defining the storyboard right now, but that’s the idea.

The game will then switch to a old-style wargame once you have a battle to do. For now, only space battles even if in a future datadisk I could add even ground-level battles (conquest of bases, etc). The spacewar battle will be turn-based and strategic only – no real-time arcade combat sequences this time. This will let me concentrate on what I’m really good at -making good strategy/simulation games 😉

More info coming soon.