In later missions, the player will have the option to configure the weapon loadout of their ship. I’ve been working on the loadout screen. Here is a preview of what I’ve got so far.
I’ve been working on the mission simulator. The simulator will not only allow you to play “historic recreations,” but also customize the procedural mission generator to create new missions. There will be more missions by the time the game is released. The ones currently in the simulator are placeholders, although I am pretty sure Battle of Vega and Battle of Procyon will be in the final release. I am also thinking about adding mini-campaigns in the simulator that feature a series of missions. Here are a few screenshots from the simulator UI that I’m currently working on.
I have submitted our current beta build version 1.0b2605 for approval on Desura. I am currently awaiting for approval on both our Desura client copy and our direct download option.
Once it has been made available, I will start sending out keys to our beta level kickstarter backers.
The beta will contain the first 4 chapters at about 22 missions. There will be a couple branching missions here and there. We are currently in talks with a writer to help us improve the story and writing. Because of this, much of the story in the game will be changed before final release. But many of the missions will stay the same. This beta build will represent about 1/2 to 1/3rd of the full game. We will continue to update the beta version all the way up until release.
And on to the Eridani System. Here are some screenshots from the beta build. I think of Eridani as the first real chapter of the game. While it has the same number of missions as the Lyota System, the Lyota System really feels like a series of training missions. In Eridani is when things start to heat up. The last two missions of Eridani are quite challenging. You’ll face Patrol Boats for the first time. Patrol Boats are small capital ships that are closer to super heavy fighters. They are tough, and if not dealt with carefully, they will be your death. Save your missiles for these guys. They are too maneuverable to use dumbfire missiles against, but not maneuverable enough to shake you. If you are out of seeker missiles, get in behind one at the edge of weapon’s range, match speed and pick him off from a distance. Watch out for his turret! If you are feeling lucky, fly in at full afterburner and drop a dumbfire missile at point blank range, so he doesn’t have a chance to dodge it.
I am working on my final quality assurance pass on the beta. This involves playing all the missions, sometimes multiple times, to tweak difficulty and story elements as well as fixing bugs. The new lighting model that Eric added is really looking great in Lyota System. Here are some screenshots from the current internal beta build.
Just an update on the beta. We are slipping release of the beta by a few days due to some complications. I have just finished up the last missions that will be included in the beta. The beta will contain the first 4 chapters (and we will be adding chapters as they are developed) and weigh in at about 20 missions. There will also be a number of bug fixes that were reported in our demo. We’ll be releasing the beta to those who pledged at the beta level or higher on our kickstarter. The distribution method will be through Desura. If possible, we will be providing a direct download option through Desura as well.
The work that remains to be done on the beta at this point is a few bug fixes and some full play-through for testing.
Eric has been hard at work updating our lighting. He’s implemented the Oren-Nayar lighting model and added a few tweaks and bug fixes to help improve the overall look of the game. We’ve been testing it out in our newest star system, the Teide System, which is lit by a Brown Dwarf star. Here are two screenshots showing off the lighting changes.
I am working on the last few missions before we release a development beta for testing (to kickstarter contributors at the beta level). These last few mission in the Teide System deal with the assault on a Revi Mining Station. In the previous post I showed a couple screenshots of the mining station in game. This is the first pass on the mining station, the final art will look a lot better!
In this multi-part mission, the player will lead an assault on this heavily armed and well-defended station that is critical to the Revi war effort.
Here are a couple in-game preview shots of the Revi Mining Facility. This is an orbital station that process ore mined on the planet below. The large orange beam is used to beam the ore up to the station for processing. These are very early shots, the texture is not complete yet and the lighting is a bit dark. But I thought I would share this progress so far on this station. Word of warning, avoid that big orange beam, it really hurts!
Our kickstarter campaign was successful. Eterium has been funded! Stay tuned for more updates.