Switching game engines/software.

For questions about using Classic.

Post » Tue Nov 09, 2010 6:33 pm

Hello everyone.
I am Irbis. From 3 months i am developing a space simulation game known as Hidden Space. If you would google a bit you will propably hit by Dev blog or youtube video from the game or a forum topics on SpaceSimCentral.

I am 26 years old guy from central europe (poland exactly), with wife and kids. I am a gamer from like more or less 16 years. oh, be warned - my english is terrible - i know that. For my defence i need to say i am a self-learner. So literaly, all the english you see me writing and posting is a product of passive learning by watching satelite TV back in 80's, english subbed anime and manga and of course - the internet. i never had any proper english studies or teachings and this is why my english, when still being rather understandble, is full of all kind of mistakes from simple grammar to spelling and my randomly "eating" letters (heh).

So anyway. After soo many years of playing games it became vry hard to find a good deep one nowadays. Most of them now are very short, linear, with horible story what so ever, or none at all. They are full of bugs, published uncarved in hurry in lust for money and audience. 3 months ago, i though to myself, that someone should finaly make a diffrence.

I am a huge fan of indi games, which when being low budged and undeveloped, still shows much higher quality and gameplay then many comersial ones.
Being a gamer, i am also a huge RPG maniac. RPG in its roots. Which gives the player open ended world, non-linearity, diffrent game paths and most of all - freedom.
Mass Effect, for e.g. is more like a movie rather then a game. Its short, linear to the blood, "cinematic". But the idea, the potensial it had and which was wasted was incredible.
Star Trek like. One of my oldest and most childish dream.
To have a spaceship. Which i can customize as i please, upgrade and enhance. To have my avatar which gains skils and expirience . To have Universe, with planets, solar systems, space anomalies, aliens, trade, space battles, exploriations and discoveries. And rich game world full of secrets, hidden content.
To be a game i cant beat over one night.
|I dont care about graphics. My first steps in gaming world was made in games which were text-based, have 8bit graphics and pixels were size of a baby elephant.
I didnt care then and i dont care know. Gameplay is what it counts.

I played and tried many games. But none of them fulfiled all my wishes, only few of them at the time, but not all - combined. I was looking for a gooooood cup of coffee. instead ive been served sugar, spoon, coffee seeds, and milk - separatly. what a shame eh?

So then an idea struck me. If i want to have a game that would satisfy my taste - i need to make, by myself.
But it is like with making up interesting stories for friends or your kids - and writing a solid 300 pages big book. Two diffrent things.
But i gained confidence. Being totaly un-talented in area of programing ive needed to obtain some kind of tool, which would do the codding for me.
I can manage sprites, i can manage SFX, GFX. I know a trick or two in PhotoShop, Audacity ect. But any and every programing language, even the most basic and simple one had been always outside of my grasp. And now, with so small time in hand, i cant afford learning programing from the base. I am just too old, to lazy, to busy and to un-talented.
I tried few game engines and finaly landed with RPG Maker VX. The interface, drag-and-drop model and overall easyness made this program almost perfect for my needs. At least, till now.

After 3 months ive discovered how limited, badly writen, glitchy and non-compatible RPVX really is.
Dont get me wrong, its okey for a simple games. For generic adventure or RPG games. But not for something as complex as HiddenSpace will luckly one day become.

After talking with Darkone, the "king and queen" of SpaceSimCentral, ive learned about Scierra and the Constructor. And i gave it a try. This is because HS is still in more "on paper" then on my hard disc stage. This is propably the last moment when i can swicth engines without too much of hussle and troubles.

So i would like to learn few things. But instead of wasting hours on researching the egnines, googling all the internet, i would like to ask you. Who can answear my questions better then you?

So here it comes.

HiddenSpace is about space exploriation.
We have our avatar, which gain expirience and skills. Which can have diffrent weapons. Which can upgrade his suit in many ways. And do the same for his spaceship.

The whole spaceship is not just a dead sprite on the screen. anytime you can leave the deck and walk around your spaceship. visit cantine, check cargo hold, go to the workshop and work on your weapons, gear or systems. You can goto your own captain quater, have a sleep, check your control panel, listen to the radio, or change your cloths. You can visit other crew members quaters, have a talk with them or a drink. Ask them to aid you whatever you have problems with. After battle you go outside and patch the spaceship hull and holes mae by enemy lasers and blasters.

When flying in space. You encounter many random events. You discover asteroids fields, derelict spacecraft, anomalies, or a spacewhales hah. you visit diffrent solar systems and their planets with radomly generated or picked surface. You can land on them, walk around. Mine ore, gather materials, herbs. Fight with the lifeforms, catch them, take them as samples or hostages.

Of cours you also have space battles, which i would like to be a mix betwen real time and tactic.
Alien rases with their ships. Fighting, trading, drifting out of full in hope for miracle to happend.
As you see, the game has many diffrent layers.
Walking on board. Walling on planets, flying in space, fighting ect.

Now my questions is, before ill waste countless hours digging in tutorials and learning the engine capabilities, which of what i have enlisted and described above can be made in Constructor? And how hard would that be for such programing retareded guy like me to learn and create?

But let me say that twice:
I am totaly untalented in area of programing.
there are many people out there whuch claims that Dark Basic is a simple game engine. Yes, perhaps it is - for a programer. I am not a one, and i will never be. I am just a guy who have beat Eye of Beholder for 27 time. I am a gamer, not a programer. my limits are narrow.

For anyone interested about HiddenSpace heres couple of links:
my section on SpaceSimCentral forums http://www.spacesimcentral.com/hidden-space-f63/
my ugly dev blog http://hiddenspace.blog.com/
game intro http://www.viddler.com/explore/irbis/videos/1/
unfinished spacespace cockpit http://vimeo.com/15624486

Best Regards
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Post » Tue Nov 09, 2010 7:32 pm

:shock: Wow just wow! I have the same dream as you! A game like that would be awesome. I haven't been using Construct for that long. But from what I have seen been done in Construct will be PERFECT for what your looking to create.

Its not easy though very time consuming. From what I have been experimenting so far Construct only limit usually comes to your PC. I am working on a vast Sci-Fi RTS. I have a part of a solar system running so far. And I mean its HUGE. I'll be posting some screens and videos here on the forum soon.

And about not being a programmer Construct is very easy to learn, mostly drag and drop.

Hope this helps some.

Edit: Also I remember seeing some here on the forum having alot of your "Ideas" put into a game already. Random systems and planet surface ect. So it can be done! :)
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Post » Tue Nov 09, 2010 7:54 pm

All of what you mentioned is possible with construct, but it sounds like a rather complex game and as such won't be easy no matter what engine you use.

Let me give you some advice - don't make your dream game first. Games are deceptively difficult to make and you're going to make a lot of mistakes while learning how to make them, which becomes a real hassle when working on a large project. Start with something small, much smaller scale and much smaller scope to learn how to make games so you don't overwhelm yourself with a project you're not ready for. What's more, with the lessons you've learned, your dream game will be more awesome because of it!

That said, even 'simple' programming languages go straight over my head, but I find construct easy to understand. I've tried a lot of game creation tools, and nowhere else have I found anything so powerful and easy to use.
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Post » Tue Nov 09, 2010 9:06 pm

[quote:2ujg918t]But from what I have seen been done in Construct will be PERFECT for what your looking to create. [/quote:2ujg918t]
hey dont fire up my hopes :)
Thank you for your post Tricky. if you would need some graphical with your game - just whistle.
I have my ways to generate some juicy starships/creatures sprites and animations. i will gladly share my SFX database with you(to my suprise it grow incredibly to almost 1gigabyte :shock: ).

[quote:2ujg918t]Let me give you some advice - don't make your dream game first. Games are deceptively difficult to make and you're going to make a lot of mistakes while learning how to make them, which becomes a real hassle when working on a large project. Start with something small, much smaller scale and much smaller scope to learn how to make games so you don't overwhelm yourself with a project you're not ready for. What's more, with the lessons you've learned, your dream game will be more awesome because of it!
[/quote:2ujg918t]
thank you, but i am not worried that much. ive been modding various games for years and few of them(the mods. all games on Infinity Engine, Gothic 1 and 2, Doom 3, Thief trilogy) was bigger then many stand-alone games, so i know the schudle things and how to not let the project size smash me to the ground. I have propably the oldest method for that. I start small and then expand, one step at the time. Its like creating the very basic, but playble - and then add new things. like new ships, new star systems, new weaponary, spaceship interiors, star base ect. imagine "X" games when they would add new features with each new patch. much like most MMO games function. the hardest part is not the content, but the system. properly build game systems mechanic are the hardest. when you have that, you can always add new features into the game, over time. i am planing for this game to be "never done" as i will always add new things with years. i also dont indend do sell it. Of course if anybody would ever wish to say "thank you" in more material way theres always that bright and shinny donation button on the website. but aside from that - i am not gone charge anybody for downloading and playing my game or any new content i will ad over time.
the reason is very plain. as i stated in my opening post - i make this game mostly for myself. I want to play that game. i want to play very much. if others will enjoy it - thats nice, but not nessesary. so basicly i am scratching my own back :)

as for the game being complex - thats just an ilussion. it is - will not be, much more complicated then Elite, or Wing Commander Privater. I am just taking what i think is best from many games and putting all that into one game.

btw - thank you for fast and nice welcome :) if Contructor will gain my trust i will be seing you guys daily :) at least to the part when ill learn the engine soo good that i will not need extra help (which i dont belive will happend hah!)

cheers! :D and keep it comming.
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Post » Tue Nov 09, 2010 10:20 pm

Keep in mind that answers here will be a bit one sided, otherwise we wouldn't be here in the first place. Your better off asking a question while being as specific as you possibly can.
Also, while it is simplified it isn't one click publishing by any means.
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Post » Wed Nov 10, 2010 12:56 am

You should talk to Alee and Arsonide on how feasible your plan is since they are working on games of a similar nature.

[quote="irbis":2rjcn1nh]it is - will not be, much more complicated then Elite, or Wing Commander Privater[/quote:2rjcn1nh]
I played Privateer (awesome game BTW), but what you are describing is a lot more complicated than privateer with walking around the ship and walking around planets. Now if the ship/planets are meaningless random settings then it is probably not too bad, but when you start to add realism then it is going to be very complicated.

I'm not saying you shouldn't try to make this game (it is my dream game btw!), but look at the number of people involved in making Privateer and how long it took to make. Granted, development time is faster in Construct and you don't have a team to coordinate with.

My suggestion is to experiment with making tiny parts of the game. If it seems feasible then go ahead and make the game. You will learn in the process and maybe pick up a few techniques to make your game more sound.
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Post » Wed Nov 10, 2010 6:27 am

specific eh? hmm
walking around spaceship - EXACTLY like in Deathwar 3030 ('80s adventure game style)


flying in space - Evachron Nova/Starscape/Starflight style (top down 2D)


walking on planetes - not yet decided, but my favorite is fake "top down" view Notrium style


same view type for hull patching aka spacewalking.

no 3d what so ever. i am sick of 3d. pure 2D in its glory.

about the privater:
my goal is to give the player a game that has whats best from Arcade (simplecity) and SpaceSims(rich in detailes and combinations).
so no zero g, Newtonian phycisc and all that. This is not NASA playground. its gaming.
we play the games to do things that we cant do in real life. we play the for their "unreality". i feel no need to make the game mimic real life. at least only to some rational and logical degree. but not to copycat.
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Post » Wed Nov 10, 2010 6:32 am

Just keep one fact on your mind: Construct isn't very reliable and can mess your projects big time, so get into habit of versioning and backups! Especially with big projects like that :)
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Post » Wed Nov 10, 2010 12:11 pm

[quote="Mipey":23953vw4]Just keep one fact on your mind: Construct isn't very reliable and can mess your projects big time, so get into habit of versioning and backups! Especially with big projects like that :)[/quote:23953vw4]
huh? O.o thats a bad news. i always forget to make backups.
what do you mean exactly by "isnt very reliable"? does it crashes offten? or screw up the project? please explain
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Post » Wed Nov 10, 2010 1:20 pm

Every time you save, put a new number on the end, eg.
v1.cap
v2.cap
v3.cap

This is what I do with every program (construct, photoshop, cubase). It's the only way to work if you're doing a serious project.

I made this infinite space game in 2 weeks in construct ;)
http://edenofficial.com/?p=33
Just a beta showing procedural galaxy generation.
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