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Void Destroyer
AKANexus Sep 1, 2013 @ 3:19pm
Nice game. My opinions:
It looks very promising indeed. It's a nice mix of RTS and Space Sim, and it even allows one to dedicate oneself just to one style (even though it may require one or two switches).

I do have some opinions on the game:
1. Even though it's on Alpha stage, the GUI could really use some reviewing. Some suggestions: Have the closest base resources always show up on the screen; Have the Net Produce Result update automatically when changing the workforce load.
2. The initial mission is somewhat too tricky, as it requires the player to wait ages for the flagship to recover (even with auto-repair IV). Maybe come up with a "Repair Ship" or something that speeds up the initial repair of the Wardrum, otherwise, one must wait for too long before mounting an assault.
3. Improve the textures. I don't know if the engine allows it, but the structures' textures are pretty low-res. There's some room for improvement there.

Other than that, you guys already got yourselves a buyer for when the game is greenlighted!
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chaosavy  [developer] Sep 1, 2013 @ 5:40pm 
Thanks for the feedback :)

1. Completely agree - The gui is going to be totally redone/overhauled/streamlined/improved. Most of the current art is my own and I'm no artist. Believe me - I hate it the most - I see it the most :)

2. The initial mission is a bit of a "quandary" - first off there seems to be a typo in the repair speed. I'm going to tweak it so that you get to about 50% health in about 3 minutes, which I think is reasonable. Later on in the game you gain repair corvettes, and there is also going to be an active ability to repair the command ship via spending resources (plus some other cost - eg: time/vulnerability/etc). The other aspect is that this is the "demo" version of the mission - it is somewhat lengthened so as the demo isn't too short. In the release version there is going to be some additional way to get a decent number of resources - eg: attacking a remote mining operation. To give the player a way to get more resources, some more action, and to bridge the too long of a gap in the game at that point.

3. The textures are how they are - they are intended to be "less than realistic." This has many benefits - no other space sim looks like this one (side stepping competition and forging unique ground), they are re-used leading to improved performance, texturing models is easier (cost/time/skill). Although you can say that they are low res - they are visually striking (in my opinion - which is why I use them).


Again - Thanks! - I'm very close to releasing an updated demo version which will feature a new cool pause (that's not a pause - rather time dilation) mechanic as well as improved mouse control (plus an additional/alternate way of controlling ships via the mouse). So if you check back in a day or a couple I'd be very interested on what you think of the new mouse options.
AKANexus Sep 1, 2013 @ 8:08pm 
Your have a good point on those textures, they are indeed quite well done. Their low-res appearance is only striking when looking at structures at a very close distance. Close enough that if your ship is that close, it means you just hit it :D

One small thing I also noticed is the excessively loud typing sound when receiving/transmitting messages. What about a single short stream of that typing sound at the start of the text block? Or maybe a quieter, typing sound? (If you have time/resources, you could even try your hand at voice-recording - there are some voice artists around willing to lend their voice in exchange for their name at the credits!)

One suggestion for the GUI when you start improving it would be to add some tooltips when mouse-hovering some of the options, for example the commands at the bottom-centre. And what about listing the commands available with some shortcuts on the Command Interface (F5), rather than keeping them exclusively to keyboard? They could be placed on a row on the top-centre of the screen, maybe? One interesting feature that is a little hard to work with, but interesting and good-looking is HUD customization by player. I can't recall which game allowed it, but it was possible to rearrange HUD elements as the player saw fit. Maybe some of the informative elements could be rearrangable by players (like mission time, target list)? Of course, don't mind my GUI suggestions just yet. Save them for when you dedicate some time to work on the GUI.

Oh, and please, add a slider to control the map panning speed ;)

I'm eagerly waiting for the next version!

PS.: I'm no game developer, I'm just a gamer saying what I personally think is cool to have on it :)
Last edited by AKANexus; Sep 1, 2013 @ 8:25pm
chaosavy  [developer] Sep 2, 2013 @ 11:32am 
Voice Overs - overall good idea - however things can get complicated -

dialog changes - currently written by me - hopefully either lots of improvements of a pro writer's touch will happen
getting free work is more hassle than it appears - legal reasons, getting people to "stick with it" reasons.


Thanks for the reminder about map panning speed I'll make a note of it :)
"Typing sound" - I personally like it but you are the 2nd person not to enjoy it as much as I do. In the Data\Sounds\UI folder there are .xml files - one of them is the the one you are looking for (one of hte textSound00-02 sounds) if you open up that file and edit the defaultVolume entry you can either tone it down or silence it completely :) - the game is extremely moddable, but I'll take your criticism under consideration in the future.


The next version is out :) - I'm going to spend some time creating a video explaining the mouse changes since due to the nature of the game (still in development) documentation is a bit lacking (though I did update the tutorials).


Being a gamer and offering feedback is very important - keep in mind - I'm a guy typing this in my basement and I've been hacking away at this for years, I miss many obvious things that you guys pick up right away :)

Everything in the game is the way it is either because I wanted it this way (with a lot of deep thought) in addition with the added factor of time/skill/money constraints - but still feedback is incredibly important.
AKANexus Sep 2, 2013 @ 12:49pm 
Great! Downloading it and trying right away.

Btw, I noticed on the WIP log you are thinking of countermeasures... I remember a very old space sim game in which you had two types of countermeasures (and your ship could only be fitted with one type at a time). You either had flares, that pursured an incoming missile and impacted it, destroying it on the process, or chaff dispensers, which were released stationary on the space, and if deployed properly, would destroy an incoming missile if the latter hit the chaff cloud. Also, on another game, there was indeed a warhead faster than any other warhead, with a excellent turning radius that only damaged other warheads. That could be adapted as a turret on a vessel on VD. Or, maybe have the PDB shoot down incoming torpedoes on bigger ships (light missiles would still get through PDB's). Those are good starting points for you to create your own CM system...

I got another suggestion as well... On the command interface, I think it would be interesting it one could select the turret group to fire by directly cliking on their icons (with the mouse on GUI mode, ofc), rather than exclusively cycling through them via F5. That way, one could quickly select what weapons to manually control on the heat of the battle :D

I've tested the new mouse flight system. It was a nice addition! Though I think the "spring-back" zone is a little too big. Would it be possible to add a slider for users to adjust that setting to better fit themselves? Your mouse flight system looks quite a bit like the one on Microsoft's Freelancer (it didn't have "spring-back" though :D)
chaosavy  [developer] Sep 2, 2013 @ 12:59pm 
Cool - a bit too busy (bout to start creating vids) to reply in detail - will do so later.

Try this - there is a "toggle mouse mode" option now - press M to toggle between them. Test out the differences and let me know your thoughts. The "alternate" mouse mode is a bit different and new so it will require a bunch of other thought. Also press Pause then un-Pause to see the "not quite paused" pause stuff.
chaosavy  [developer] Sep 2, 2013 @ 1:00pm 
Oh and! - in F5 mode (aka command mode) press M to toggle a similar to the "alternate" mouse mode. In which the ship will turn where your view is pointed. Then press M again to revert to turret aiming only.
AKANexus Sep 2, 2013 @ 1:07pm 
Ooh! The Time Dilation feature is awesome! The heartbeat effect is cool as well! Nice work there!
I think I found an issue with the alternate mouse mode: On the alternate mode, when moving the mouse upwards, rather than pitching the ship upwards, the ship actually moves upward, still pointing forward. Was it supposed to behave like that?

Oh, and the F5+Alternate Mouse combo works flawlessly! It allows for quick manual repositioning of the ship to better use the firing arcs!
AKANexus Sep 2, 2013 @ 1:32pm 
The alternate mouse mode is similar to the "Helm" mode used on Starshatter. It was a nice addidtion to VD!
chaosavy  [developer] Sep 2, 2013 @ 2:55pm 
Time dilation - hopefully it will be even more awesome via some visuals :) "Funny" story - the idea hit me when I asked my sound guy to create the pause sound - but the pause was instant and the sound took 5 or so secs, so I thought why not slow down time? then resume - speed up - then hit hit me, why have a pause when just slowing would solve a bunch of little issues - like ship commands not showing in tactical since they needd a time step (due to how the code is structured - have to be sure things happen in sequence or risk crashes).


Ship moving upwards - this is by design for larger ships - instead of "pitching" up they will thrust up - its one of those "cinematic" touches where I want large ships to be "upright" - you can still manually pitch them up via the "standard" mouse mode or joystick.

Try the F5 + M combo in a Perez G - it kind of works for dog fights :) - since that ship has turret so it doesn't need to face enemy - but lining them up is still necessary due to their particular coverage.

Ok - back to video making :)
chaosavy  [developer] Sep 2, 2013 @ 7:40pm 
Replying more so to the above posts that I skipped:


Countermeasures - right now missiles are unlimited, so countermeasures are a kind of a waste. Missiles might get overhauled so that there isn't so much "missile spam" - but the challenge is making them as main weapons, not having them be too weak, not too strong, and still maintaining effective countermeasures (eg: point defense guns - which are in the game).

Spring back - options - could you elaborate?


Command interface - turret groups - I'll keep that in mind during the overhaul. I'm going to try very hard to streamline the GUI/HUD as much as possible - it is too wordy at the moment (not to mention ugly) - it stems from the GUI/HUD being primarily a source of debug info as I was coding the early game :)


GUI/HUD customizations - yes you can customize it :) There is a .layout editor for the CEGUI (a gui engine that I use) files - so you can mod it (somewhat easily).

AKANexus Sep 2, 2013 @ 8:42pm 
Nice! That "easy moddabilty" is one of the good features space-sims have been leaving behind nowadays!

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I'm not sure how have you coded it, but I'm thinking you have set something like a "square" on the screen, centered on the middle, and as long as the mouse is inside that square, it'll spring-back to the middle center, with a velocity faster as closer it gets to the centre; if the mouse is outside that "area", it'll stay there until you move your mouse back into the square. At least experimentally, it looked like if I left the mouse right at the border, it'll stay there, turning the ship forever, however, if I moved the mouse closer to the centre just a bit, it would start springing back.

What I initially thought was to allow the user to set the "inverse dead-zone", or more explicitly, the area where the user can leave the mouse and it wouldn't spring back to the centre. However, I've been re-thinking that suggestion and I think it's good the way it currently is. The game would never require that much time turning a smaller ship, and for capital ships it's better to use the "point-where-to-go" alternate mouse mode. In other words, it's good the way it is :)

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I do have another suggestion: I wasn't able to remap the mousewheel scrolling... I tried to map it to "increase/decrease throttle". Is it possible?

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The alternate mouse mode (you should call it "Helm Mode" - it seems like you are giving the crew a direction where to go and they point the ship there :D) has one little bit that might be improved: It's hard to know when is the mouse centered vertically... I often take some tries until I do manage to stop the ship from moving vertically. Maybe some indicator of the "set vertical speed" when using the alternate mode? (I'm not sure I've expressed myself clearly on this paragraph :P)
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