eXplorminate e4X
eXplorminate e4X
September 24, 2014
United States 
The 4Xplorer Apr 23, 2015 @ 9:17am
Polaris Sector - MEGA thread!
Last edited by Nasarog; Oct 23, 2017 @ 5:52am
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Showing 1-15 of 1,528 comments
Mezmorki Apr 23, 2015 @ 9:32am 
The alpha/beta is free to try right now yes?
Last edited by Mezmorki; Apr 23, 2015 @ 9:32am
The 4Xplorer Apr 23, 2015 @ 9:33am 
Originally posted by Mezmorki:
The alpha/beta is free to try right now yes?

Yes, I'll add it to the main post after I find it again!

Unless the dev beats me to it ;)
Last edited by The 4Xplorer; Apr 23, 2015 @ 9:33am
Ufnv Apr 23, 2015 @ 9:41am 
Alpha build can be found here:

However, it is really outdated by today, both graphically and conceptually.

That build was used to share the game with community and get as much feedback as possible. And I've got even more than I expected :)

So the game was re-worked quite a bit.

I'll post a current status and the general info in the next post.
Last edited by Ufnv; Apr 23, 2015 @ 9:53am
Nasarog Apr 23, 2015 @ 11:13am 
I've been following the art progression, and it is amazing.
Ufnv Apr 23, 2015 @ 12:29pm 
So, Galaxia is the game about space empires.
And I am brave (or stupid) enough for not trying to copy MOO or something else, but to implement my own view and concept of what a space strategy could be.

Also, after releasing the initial Alpha that already had nearly all classical 4x features implemented, I was talking a lot with players to understand the weak points and thinking on what I can do to deal with them.

These are the current cornerstones of my game concept:
- The gameplay should always evolve, forcing changes in Player's strategy and tactics
- Information is a big value, getting it and preventing others to get it can be a game by itself
- Micromanagement in non-core game elements should be minimised
- Turns and hexes are too artificial, but in the same time there should be a feeling of a turn-based game - the Player should never lose control because of a poor reaction time
- Science should resemble more real-life one, always moving in different directions
- Diplomacy is you tool if you do not want to fight often
- 4X strategy game is not an FPS, so it cannot consume 4+GB of memory and require a high-end video card :)

Plus, as I am personally is a big fan of a tactical combat, it is obvious that tactical combat (and, as a consequence, the ship designer) are the parts I focus at :)

So, the galaxy map consists of a number of stars. The game allows for quite huge galaxies (several thousand stars), but I feel the sweet spot is around 300-400 stars. This is big enough for the galaxy to look "big", but still manageable for a player end-game with the right amount of automation.

The map is "semi-3D" - this means it is 3D so nobody can say it is 2D, but in the same time you can work with it as it is 2D.

Each star can have several planets, some of them colonizable. In the beginning you can colonise earth like worlds only, but with the development of technologies you can colonise other type of planets as well.

Planet colonisation can be automated - if you do not like to bother with colony ships, just click "plan colonisation" for the planet and the game will do everything by itself and report when it's done.

You can build a different kind of building on a planet - it depends a bit on a planet type - but generally there are buildings that generate food, those that mine minerals (if there are mineral deposits on a planet), those that produce science (if planet allows), industrial ones (produces ships, ground units and other buildings) and special ones (like space defence, space scanning arrays, etc).
Also you can switch on and off so-called "initiatives" - like restrict population growth, force population to work harder, etc.
If you do not like to deal with planet micro-management, you can either make planet building template and use it for other planets, or just switch on the automation for the planet, choosing one of the automation types.

Planets also build ships, obviously.

You generally cannot make an "universal" planet that is good for everything - this "universal" one would basically sucks in anything, specialised planets rule.

The basic FTL mechanics is via star-lanes but with proper technologies it is possible to make new star-lanes.

There are just a few minerals in the game (namely, metals, oil, radio-actives, burmiton, reidium). Some are quite common, some are quite rare. They are not equally important during the whole game progress - at one time you urgently need oil, after 300 game years you need burmiton, etc.
There is no money in game, but there is food. Unlike other minerals, you cannot trade food with other races as they do not eat your food :)
Food is important for your colonies to grow and be happy. Basically, colonies grow when you have enough food to feed population.
Resources are shared between planets - you do not need to create trade routes and things like this.

Planets also generate science points if there are scientific buildings on them.
You can distribute these points between fundamental sciences and applied research. Fundamental sciences are Math, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. When you invest enough in these, applied research topics appear. These are something like Cold Fusion, Antimatter, Fast Calculations, etc. When you invest in applied research, you get specific technologies - blasters, generators, new buildings, etc.
So you should always invest at least something in fundamental science, but are free whether to invest in any of the available applied researches - and this defines how quickly you get this or that technology.

You start with a single earthlike planet with a lot of population available to use as colonists and only a basic support resources-wise - just enough to build scouts and colonisers and send them to the stars.

When you colonise planets, you also claim "territory", that is everything in between of the stars you colonised. Other races (there are currently 9 races) do the same. When you meet some other race, you enter into diplomatic relations.
There are several states of relations.
The worst is obviously, a war.
Then the neutral with closed borders - intruder fleet can be attacked.
Then there can be open borders for civil ships - scouts, transports, colonisers, etc - you can freely pass through each others space, but are not allowed to colonise planets inside other's territory or move armed ships there.
Then there is open border for military ships - and your fleets can refuel at partner's stars.
Then there is a permission to colonise inner worlds - and your fleets are repaired at their bases.
Then there is a full alliance - with the possibility to co-ordinate attacks and defence.
And the final stage is the possibility to join into one state.
Via diplomacy you can also trade, negotiate things, talk about other races, etc.

So, one of the victory conditions is to join a big amount of races into one state.

There is also espionage. It's a game of information. Usually you know nothing and need to collect information to take good strategic decisions. The interesting feature here is that when you discover other race's spy, you have an option of not to reveal it, but to start feeding disinformation to it. And the same applies to your spies :)
Spies are also a weapon, as they can do a number of sabotage actions.
However, if you don't like this game, you can automate your spies.

Back to the general mechanics. The game is not turn-based. But not completely real-time either. All movements are simultaneous, but when something important happens, the game reports and pauses. There are 50+ configurable events that can trigger a pause. This events are like "fleet reached its destination", "enemy spotted", "new technology developed", etc. Some of these events features auto-unpausing. Like if the fleet reached some star and paused the game, then the pause will be switched off when you give a new order to that fleet.

This creates a very relaxed game flow, you are never in a situation when you missed something in one part of the galaxy because you were dealing with something in another part of it.

Finally, there is a tactical combat. It is instantiated and goes in pauseable real-time.
I can write a separate post twice as long about tactical combat, but the basic thing is you can give different orders to each ship, can make formations, cover, release fighters from hangars and get them back for reloading, etc.

All ships, including fighters are designed in a ship designer. It is quite advanced - you get a ship hull with empty space and fill it with various equipment, balancing weight, energy, speed, weapons, etc.

The key thing is that you cannot create an universal ship. It is always the best when the fleet is comprised from a number of specialised ships - carriers with different kinds of fighters onboard, capital ships with energy weapons, ships with missiles and lasers, anti-fighter support ships, etc.

The version that is available at indiedb lacks a lot:
- espionage and information game
- advanced diplomacy and colonisation rules
- a lot of tactical features - now all weapon acts differently and a lot of things added that change tactics completely
- mid-game and end-game things that dramatically change gameplay
- random events and things to discover
- ability to transport orbital stations
- ground combat is in its initial stage
- drawing of territory
- ability to create outpost
- ability to create new star lanes
- a number of small UI related things

Also the graphics is completely reworked.

Here are the links to the new graphics:

How ships look in tactical combat:

How new UI looks like (concept):

How races look like:

Ufnv Apr 23, 2015 @ 12:32pm 
As the game is still in development, all kinds of suggestions and ideas are welcomed.
And I'll either implement the idea or start arguing on why I think it is not possible/feasible to implement this :)
Mezmorki Apr 23, 2015 @ 12:37pm 
Whow. Awesome summary of the design. You touched on a lot of ideas I've been longing for someone to address (assuming it all comes together as planned!).

What is the current status of the build beyond the alpha that is posted. Is there a time line for additional involvement in a beta? I'd love to provide some feedback when the time is right.

Ufnv Apr 23, 2015 @ 12:49pm 
Currently implemented additional things:
- Espionage, counter-espionage, disinformation
- AI track the history of relations and acts accordingly
- Ability to allow/disallow colonization within our territory for other races
- Ability to negotiate common attack/defence plan with allies

Colonization and expansion
- Galaxy map is changed - now it shows the territory
- Completely new model of ground combat
- Ground combat/planet invasion can be automated
- Currently there are different types of ground units
- New way of planet colonisation - removed several unnecessary complexities
- Ability to create outpost instead of a company - simply by unloading a ground unit to a planet
- Strategic AI significantly changed to account for espionage, artificial star portals, movable orbital stations, etc

- Ability to create new star lanes
- Ability to disassemble orbital stations and move them inside transport ships in parts
- A lot of new military technologies
- A lot of new planetary technologies

Tactical combat
- Removed cycled battle space
- UI and control reworked
- Tactical AI reworked to account for new technologies
- A lot of new tactical tricks
- Weapon ranges significantly increased

- UI is completely redesigned
- Ships are completely re-drawn
- Races are re-drawn
- Items re-drawn

- Added "Antarans"-like end-game scenario
- Science is reworked to make game always evolving in strategy and tactics
- Racial features added

And a lot more.
Mezmorki Apr 23, 2015 @ 1:20pm 
Sign me up!

One thing it looks like you are thinking about that is a big missed opportunity I feel is the so-called "information war" - which isn't just espionage but also basic detection and the kinds of information you can or can't see about your opponent's stuff. There is a lot room to explore ways of disclosing or concealing information to make the game more interesting.
Last edited by Mezmorki; Apr 23, 2015 @ 1:22pm
Ufnv Apr 23, 2015 @ 1:57pm 
Originally posted by Mezmorki:
One thing it looks like you are thinking about that is a big missed opportunity I feel is the so-called "information war" - which isn't just espionage but also basic detection and the kinds of information you can or can't see about your opponent's stuff. There is a lot room to explore ways of disclosing or concealing information to make the game more interesting.
And I really like how it works.

In Galaxia it is also ship-based. So, you do not have a special "spy" unit, but instead you have a ship hull equipped with scanner array module, sabotage module and stealth modules to hide the dissipated energy.

You move you spy quietly inside enemy territory and start gathering information.
Initially you know nothing but the number of stars/planets another race owns (they tell you). You do not know what stars are their, how they are connected, what planets are there, what they produce and what buildings the have. You know nothing about their fleets and even if you see the fleet in the adjustment system you either know nothing about its composition or know this very roughly (like, several big ships and a lot of small ships).

But the more your spies are orbiting their planets and the better (more population, etc) these planets are, the more information you start to get.

If you are in a hurry and does not want to wait and collect information in small pieces, your spy always can try "active" espionage - there are a number of things to do, like investigate planet, ship or fleet, etc. But there are chances your spy get revealed - they depend on complexity of operation and the experience of your spy.

Experience grows up slowly with "passive" espionage, but the real gain in experience can only be reached with active actions.

The longer you stay in alien system, the more chances you spy get revealed by their scanners. Then you most likely would start receiving disinformation - start seeing false fleets, wrong parameters of ships, other than real buildings on planets, etc. So some care should be taken here.

Also you can search for enemy spies - passively by building scanner arrays on planets and actively by performing "search for hidden ships" operations with your spy ships. And you can control what disinformation you feed. There are empire-wide and planet-wide disinformation.

To me it works quite funny. It is especially rewarding when you can bring your fleet that is very well tuned to combat enemy fleet after you got exact information about that fleet. Or force you enemy to attack a junk star and ambush him because you were telling his discovered spies this is a very important but weakly protected system :)

However number of guys have concerns espionage may become too important for the game, so there is an option to switch off disinformation and automate spying.
Nasarog Apr 23, 2015 @ 2:00pm 
Very cool. Any module that adds gameplay but also has an on/off switch is a positive in my book.
Martok Apr 24, 2015 @ 2:13am 
Wow, Ufnv. That sounds freakin' awesome. I already liked what I'd seen of Galaxia thus far, and I'm more eager than ever to see where you take this! Keeping my fingers crossed that you can pull it all together. :)

Originally posted by Ufnv:
So, the galaxy map consists of a number of stars. The game allows for quite huge galaxies (several thousand stars), but I feel the sweet spot is around 300-400 stars. This is big enough for the galaxy to look "big", but still manageable for a player end-game with the right amount of automation.

I'll admit I was especially happy to read this. I love my "epic"-sized galaxies (thousands of stars), but I also agree that a few hundred stars is generally better if you want to keep things at least somewhat manageable.

marlowe221 Apr 24, 2015 @ 1:18pm 
@Ufnv -

I would definitely be interested in reading about how the tactical combat works. Please do share!

Also, yeah... I want to beta test this game. :D
Ufnv Apr 24, 2015 @ 2:23pm 
I'll describe it soon :)

Nasarog Apr 24, 2015 @ 2:50pm 
Originally posted by Ufnv:
I'll describe it soon :)
How about an updated beta?
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