Author Topic: For shame! No cookie for Chris, lots of Stars Beyond Reach screenshots for you.  (Read 12596 times)

Offline x4000

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I would really love to do the alpha for this but I probably will not have enough time to play it so I guess I will just skip out on the alpha this time (I actually have exams starting in 2 weeks). :(

No worries!  Time enough when you're not so busy.

I fully expect to have time for the Alpha, provided it's in mid-February.

This game is looking great so far.

Added you to the list of possibles. :)

I've no idea whether they're normal for 4X techs, but independent cooking, operatic training and culinary artistry = awesomeness :)

Assuming that blank techs (Adv. Hand-Weapons, Passive Sonar, Terraforming) are passive upgrades, what do the icons that accompany the other techs represent? I'd assume plenty are buildings, but I'm curious about whether some are the services part of "core buildings and services".

Haha, yeah, some of those are pretty fun.  All of the icons at the bottoms of techs (the little white ones) are building unlocks.  So as you can see, almost every tech thus far unlocks one, sometimes two, buildings.  There are just buildings out the wazoo that you're progressing into here, and you start out with next to none.

The ones that are blank (not having a building icon on them) do something else, sometimes which is passive, sometimes which is opening up new abilities that aren't strictly related to unlocking specific buildings.

Adv. Hand-Weapons: A general early-game ground combat fighting buff, and a prereq for some other stuff.

Passive Sonar: Allows you to see the underground map at all (in more than just unexplored fog).  Your buildings all give a short range of sonar view around them, depending on the building in question.  Other later sonar unlocks give you more active stuff.

Terraforming: This literally unlocks your ability to terraform by placing any of your three terrain types.  So that allows you to start competing in the atmospheric mix competition, if you choose to do that.  So technically that unlocks 3 different things that you can place, but it doesn't show those at the moment.  I suppose it would be good if it did in the future (the specific terrains vary by race).  Actually, I just added that to our internal low-priority list, thanks. :)

Also, since you might be curious:

independent cooking: Unlocks the cheap diner, which is the first method of food preparation separate from your lander itself.  You have to grow food, get and purify water, and then turn those into meals.  The cheap diner does that (edit: this was unclear.  The diner turns 1 purified water + 1 crop into 1 meal.  It doesn't make water or crops, heh), and feeds a lot of people, but adds very little SP.

culinary artistry: This unlocks the fine dining establishment (nutritionist training unlocks the middle class eatery).  The fine dining feeds very few people, and is expensive to maintain, but if you use it right it can be an SP goldmine.  You need to build a mix of these to really optimize your city for both citizen growth and SP growth, though.

operatic training: This teaches your folks how to sing, and build an opera house.  The opera house is bloody expensive to maintain in a lot of ways, but it's one of the big independent (aka not attached to or related to basic subsistence/housing/needs) ways to generate SP.  The history museum is another one.  There are pros and cons here, too, because it cuts into your crown production quite a bit thanks to its ongoing operating cost; but the SP boost can really help you get some very nice social level unlocks, and so on and so forth.

This game is looking more interesting every time I see a new post. I'm particularly interested in the statement that the player races base their technology of Earth knowledge, that seems unique in both making it easier for new players to understand that X = Y, it may also sastisfy people who simply enjoy Humans in sci-fi (myself included).

Thank you!  And welcome to the forums, too. :)

Well I'd certainly like to help with the alpha as well, this is sounding more awesome as it goes, Spire aside :)
I don't know if I've been that helpful at it before, but I certainly have the time and the interest for if you need another!

I don't keep track of precisely how many things people submit (and volume over quantity is not always preferable), but I certainly remember your name in the release notes many many times.  Anyway, added you to the list of those interested. :)

I'd love to join the alpha. I'm also glad that the Christmas lull is over and we all get to see some more details.

You're an obvious one to add to the alpha, heh -- you've been one of the biggest supporters thus far!

what effect does social progress have beyond unlocking techs?

Well, each social progress category is in itself kind of like a tech unlock.  A passive bonus, anyway.  It's vaguely like the culture unlocks in Civ V, or kind of like leveling up in Zelda II.  Depending on where you decide to take your level, you might get better health on all your buildings, or the ability to have another city, or more benefit per tile of terraformed land, etc, etc.  It's another way of specializing your empire, essentially.

and are the categories and bonuses the same between races/leaders?

They are the same between leaders of a race, but different per race.  There are 8 overall basic categories.  However, each race has a unique category that only they get.  That category of theirs replaces a specific one of the base 8.  Different races lose a different one of the base categories in exchange for the unique one that they get.  So every race is a little different from the others in here both from losing one and gaining one.

Are any of the techs are repeatable? (researching again for passive bonuses, for end-of-tree techs)

Not yet, no.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do with end-of-tree-techs just yet.  I'm thinking that I may funnel that into a procedural technologies section, but I'm not sure yet.  The very late game is something I have mapped out for certain victory conditions but not too well for others.  The tech-focused endgame is one of the ones that I haven't focused on too heavily just yet, because it's one of the easiest conceptually (and thus one I can safely ignore for now).

You know what screw it, I can do the alpha, studying can wait. I might not be able to play it as much as other people but I can probably do 3 to 4 hours a week. So if you need anyone else to be in the alpha I CAN do it. Ignore my post above.

Haha, okay.  It will be 4 or 5 weeks from now anyhow.  How long do your exams last?  I really don't want to get in the way of those.  I'll let you make your own choices as to how you allocate your time, but please don't let excitement ruin any class grades.  That's never worth it!


Cheers everybody. :)
« Last Edit: January 17, 2015, 02:28:59 PM by x4000 »
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Offline Zebeast46

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If it is 4 to 5 weeks from now I am fine. My exams are in 2 weeks so I do not think the time will overlap.
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Offline x4000

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If it is 4 to 5 weeks from now I am fine. My exams are in 2 weeks so I do not think the time will overlap.

Slick!  That will likely work well, then. :)
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Offline doctorfrog

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After getting my fill of AI War for a bit, I'm on a bit of a Sim City 4 kick, but after generating a heightmap and dividing it into plots, I started wishing for more rivalry in between my cities. And it reminded me of what I often wish for when playing games like this: either I want some Civilization-style conflict in my Sim Cities, or more satisfying city management in my Civilizations.

Regardless of whether it sets out to scratch this sort of itch or not, what I'm saying is that Stars Beyond Reach is very intriguing to me. Looking forward to more reports!

Offline Cinth

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If anyone else is interested and will have time, please do feel free to post or PM. :)

Put me down too!!
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Offline steelwing

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Afraid I won't have time to do the alpha justice, what with all the other demands on my time.  How will the beta work?

Offline Draco18s

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Afraid I won't have time to do the alpha justice, what with all the other demands on my time.  How will the beta work?

Same here.  Far to much going on for me to be of any use in treating.

Offline x4000

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And it reminded me of what I often wish for when playing games like this: either I want some Civilization-style conflict in my Sim Cities, or more satisfying city management in my Civilizations.

This is, in a word, the exact same itch that I get.

I love building cities in SimCity, and always have.  But then I got good at it past a certain level.  And I've always been like "well, what next?"  It's still a fun game, but it doesn't captivate me like it did when I was a kid, because it's no longer such a challenge.  And when I just turn up the literal difficulty, I find I'm spending more time fiddling minutiae rather than actually making more interesting choices, so that's not too fun for me.  At this point I play citybuilding games either because they have a new spin on things that I'll enjoy learning and then stop when I'm done, or I just play them as a kind of a relaxing thing to have some noncompetitive fun with.

Civ, on the other hand, I love.  But the unit fiddling gets to me, and I tend to always want more on the empire/city building front.  It's not that I don't want conflict, in fact I'd love more of it -- there's this part in the middle where it kind of sags against the AI if you're not playing over aggressively.  But I don't want the conflict to be "build another guy, move him to that place again, have him attack that other thing again, repeat" or some variant thereof.  Which is usually what winds up happening to me if there's some border conflict.  Or if it's an incursion, it's "put most other stuff on hold, start cranking out guys, figure out the shortest path to get them to targets, continually adjust what the best targets are, take what you want, okay now it's half an hour later and the rest of your economy is a bit on fire."  I don't like that, either, because it's just putting this huge part of the game on hold while I deal with fighting of any sort.

One of my goals with SBR was to make it so that it would be interesting and challenging even if there were no AIs around at all.  Not overly so -- it would get old faster than a usual Arcen title -- but still to make that a satisfying game to play until you get the hang of it really well, and then you'd put it aside.  And then to make the AI opponents take that to the next level, where things are hopefully always fresh and interesting, and you can't just best-path anything.

Anyway, that's the goal. :)

If anyone else is interested and will have time, please do feel free to post or PM. :)

Put me down too!!

Of course!  Gotcha on there. :)

Afraid I won't have time to do the alpha justice, what with all the other demands on my time.  How will the beta work?

Same here.  Far to much going on for me to be of any use in treating.

No worries at all guys, I don't expect everyone to be available all the time.  For the beta, basically that will be an open... I hate to use the term "early access," but that's the general idea.  We'll sell it for a discount (same discount also available on launch week if you prefer to wait until 1.0, so there's not some incentive to get it early just for monetary reasons), and that period will run from sometime in March (hopefully early March, but we'll see) up until probably early May when the 1.0 drops.

Unlike a lot of early access games, and even unlike most of our own past private betas, this one will be pretty much feature-complete at the start of the beta, although there will be some more content added, and lots of bugfixing and whatnot.  Probably the closest analogue to this is how Bionic Dues was.  That was basically done when we hit public beta, but then we went through hardcore bugfixing, balancing, and usability work for a month with players, and that really showed in the final game.  For SBR, the goal is two months of that rather than one.  Although unlike Bionic, in the SBR beta we'll still be sneaking in some more buildings and techs and a few other things as we go through the beta.
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Offline Draco18s

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And it reminded me of what I often wish for when playing games like this: either I want some Civilization-style conflict in my Sim Cities, or more satisfying city management in my Civilizations.

This is, in a word, the exact same itch that I get.

I love building cities in SimCity, and always have.  But then I got good at it past a certain level.  And I've always been like "well, what next?"  It's still a fun game, but it doesn't captivate me like it did when I was a kid, because it's no longer such a challenge.  And when I just turn up the literal difficulty, I find I'm spending more time fiddling minutiae rather than actually making more interesting choices, so that's not too fun for me.  At this point I play citybuilding games either because they have a new spin on things that I'll enjoy learning and then stop when I'm done, or I just play them as a kind of a relaxing thing to have some noncompetitive fun with.

Civ, on the other hand, I love.  But the unit fiddling gets to me, and I tend to always want more on the empire/city building front.  It's not that I don't want conflict, in fact I'd love more of it -- there's this part in the middle where it kind of sags against the AI if you're not playing over aggressively.

Ditto to all of that.

Offline Zebeast46

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Dear god, some of the early access games on steam. People actually ignore the bugs all because there is a "early access" sign on it. Don't get me started on DayZ, it was buggy as a mod and from what I have heard it is buggy as a standalone, why anyone would buy a game with zombies that defy the laws of physics is beyond me.
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Offline Draco18s

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Dear god, some of the early access games on steam. People actually ignore the bugs all because there is a "early access" sign on it. Don't get me started on DayZ, it was buggy as a mod and from what I have heard it is buggy as a standalone, why anyone would buy a game with zombies that defy the laws of physics is beyond me.

OTOH there are games that do really poorly in early access for the same reason.
Dungeon Defenders 2 had a lot of push from people who couldn't get pre-alpha access for Trendy to take it to Early Access and a lot of reservations from people who did (aka the Defense Council) not to.  It's been a wash all in all.  There are a ton more players (good), a ton of people who are staunchly against the idea of a progress wipe (hello, it's EARLY ACCESS, resets NEED to happen), and a lot of criticism from the Steam EA portion of the community who are like, "There's hardly any content here! And there's bugs! And... so don't buy this!"

Speaking of wipes, there was an update (this was before it went EA) where the item system changed, necessitating the removal of the old, and one Council player  (who did not read the patch notes) logged in, found he had no gear, and his immediate response was "WHERE THE F*** IS MY STUFF!?" in all caps.

So the pros and cons of having done so have pretty much balanced out.  The largest hangup has been the new players who don't understand balance not understanding balance and having to be coached, slowly and painfully, through the process of becoming Level 1 Intelligent Characters (read the articles, they are amazing.  TL;DR: I mean having to get people to understand that "that enemy is very strong in that specific way, rather than ask for a nerf, how about you put down the hammer and pick up a screwdriver?"  Because yes, the javelin thrower has a longer range than EVERY TOWER, how about you use a trap or an aura, which cannot be targeted instead?  Yes the traps have a very small range, guess what, javelin throwers tend to pick a very very specific place to stand, which yes, changes depending on your layout, but doesn't from wave to wave.  (A "level 1 intelligent character" is a character who reacts to their environment, optimizing their own lives, acting in their own self-interest)).

Offline Cyborg

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The graphics seem to get better and better with every title. Looking good so far.
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Offline x4000

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The graphics seem to get better and better with every title. Looking good so far.

Thanks!  Blue and Cath (and the several freelance artists who contract on an as-needed basis) have been working super hard on it. :)
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Offline mrhanman

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I'm always down for some alpha testing.  I love being a part of the development, if only a tiny part.

Offline x4000

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I'm always down for some alpha testing.  I love being a part of the development, if only a tiny part.

Added!  I always love seeing familiar faces again and again -- and new folks too, of course. :)
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