Stardeus Space Base Building Colony Sim Development Update: 2021-04-23

Hey Space Travelers!

This development update took longer than usual to write, because I prioritized finishing the big changes first. Let’s take a quick look at all the major changes since the last update.

New Gameplay Trailer

The old trailer was a little dated and didn’t reflect the current state of development, so I took the time to make a new one. I hope you like it!

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Artwork Overhaul

I spent a whole month focused on learning Blender and redoing all of the artwork. Here’s how the art looked before the overhaul:

Art Before

And here’s after:

Art After

Art After

You can also zoom in closer than before, because of the increased level of detail, all artwork now contains 4x more pixels!

Art After

The new artwork is definitely not perfect, but I am slowly getting better, and the art will probably be reiterated again at some point. However I want to stress that for me mechanics will always be more important than art, and as always, most of my focus and effort will go into making the game fun to play, not good looking!

Suggestions System

After the tutorial ends, playtesters would occasionally get lost and couldn’t figure out what they should do next. To tackle this, I have implemented a dynamic suggestions system that tracks your situation and triggers Ship Computer dialogue events that will guide you towards reasonable actions.

For example, if you aren’t running a research for long enough, it will suggest to start a research, if you haven’t enclosed the Stasis Array with walls, it will suggest you to do so, then suggest you to build a heater and an oxygen pump so that your colonists will not die, etc.

After you load the game, active suggestions will pop up to refresh your memory.

Suggestions

Ambient Light Setting

Several people were saying that the game is too dark, while I often thought I wanted it to be even dimmer. Now it is going to be configurable, you will be able to choose from 4 different ambient light settings. “Immersive Dim” is my personal favorite.

AmbientLights

New Devices and Behaviors

  • Loom weaves clothing and various fibers. Naked colonists will try to find and equip clothing that fits their body type.
  • Grinder grinds certain materials into finer grained ones, like rock into soil.
  • Auto Kitchen prints meals from raw ingredients. Drones will then haul those meals to the fridge.
  • Cloning Pod will grow human colonists from protein and water. Water is purified in the recycler after Biowaste is processed.
  • Repair Station will perform maintenance on robots and drones, fixing their damage and reducing wear, while also recharging their batteries.

New Devices

New Colonist Traits

Human colonists are getting more sophisticated and unique, with combinations of various new traits. To name a few:

  • Insomniacs will go to sleep only when they are close to passing out, and will wake up while their sleep need is far from fulfilled.
  • Ablutophobic colonists will avoid showering until their BO is so strong that even the robots can smell them. This will have interesting effects with interpersonal relationships, when time comes to implement that.
  • Nudists will refuse to wear any clothing.
  • Fast Metabolism will make colonists hungry faster.
  • Slow Poopers will take 4 times longer to relieve themselves in a toilet.

Many traits have their opposites, like Fast Metabolism and Slow Metabolism.

Slow Pooper

There are more features, improvements, story events and polish I could talk about, but I will stop here, as this is getting too long already. Here is a full changelog for the curious ones.

v0.5.8 (2021.04.23)
– Add “Short Sleeper” being trait
– Add “Long Sleeper” being trait
– Add “Insomniac” being trait
– Add “Nudist” being trait
– Add “Showerer” being trait
– Add “Fast Metabolism” being trait
– Add “Slow Metabolism” being trait
– Add “Slow Pooper” being trait
– Add “Ablutophobic” being trait
– Add “Always Hungry” being trait
– Move keyboard shortcuts around

v0.5.7 (2021.04.22)
– Fix multiple people being able to use the same shower / toilet at the same time
– Mark last loaded save as latest for “continue”
– Make crafting devices more flexible and verbose about their state
– Improve pathfinding to make items stuck in walls or objects reachable from nearby
– Polish crafter and producer components (lots of devices based on these)
– Fix toilet and shower AI task loading issue
– Fix replacing an wall with a door or a vent would not create the construction task
– Show oxygen pump and heater radius when they are placed or selected
– Fix tutorial not waiting for a tile being selected underneath the ship computer
– Fix dead beings trying to get dressed
– Allow opening research view when Electricity research is not complete
– Fix beings sleeping in unconstructed bed

v0.5.6 (2021.04.20)
– Display suggestion dialogue as soon as the suggestion appears
– Repair tool will show damaged tiles as red
– Replace percentage displays with progress bars in construction and repairs
– Add progress bar displays where necessary
– Ensure correct worker facing after loading the game with task in progress
– Fix incorrectly displayed actual and peak output values in electricity grid details
– Add electricity grid, memory and storage bars to research view
– Block research view from opening if ship computer is not connected to a powered grid
– Turn Stasis Array into an electrical device
– Encourage the player to connect to Stasis Array early in game
– Build tool will show green tiles where current object can be placed
– Implement fridge as food storage unit
– Accumulate biowaste when Toilet is used
– Implement toilet cleaning
– Add Cloning Pods
– Heal injured humans when they are sleeping in a bed with satisfied hunger need
– Humans will seek and equip available clothing items
– Add Sleeping Pod
– Automatically haul unstored food items to the fridge
– Fix batteries not charging in bigger electricity grids

v0.5.5 (2021.04.14)
– Add maintenance need for robots and drones
– Add Repair Station to fix damaged robots and do their maintenance
– Add Haul to Storage tool
– Fix task management tool not working properly with non-tile based tasks
– Add Loom device
– Separate Thought Bubble and regular Icon to make them displayable at the same time
– Make it possible to haul dropped harvested wheat
– Fix harvesting task save / load issues
– Change cursor depending on the active tool
– Fix a rendering bug that would sometimes display damage overlay incorrectly
– Improve ship wreckage generation
– Fix broken generation of Empty and Random ships
– Make ship generation more resilient to missing object definitions
– Fix ambience sources autoplaying when they shouldn’t
– Break down attachable space objects if adjacent floors get destroyed
– Generate brighter floor lights
– Add dev inspect tool
– Fix object rotation generation ending up with half cut sprites in random ship scenario
– Add health bars
– Add initial implementation of Crawler
– Allow building floors on top of material debris in open space

v0.5.4 (2021.04.09)
– Fix tutorial getting occasionally stuck at energy connection phase
– Fix some bugs with door passability and info icons not updating
– Make meteor shower multi directional
– Make meteor and asteroid impacts drop materials
– Disallow building tiles based objects on top of lose objects
– Make it possible to haul raw materials to storage
– Fix drones getting stuck in distant space after deconstructing something far away
– Add Heat Sink device for Ship Computer
– Make ambient light configurable in video settings
– Improve grouped events behavior
– Add new Story Event: “Dust Storm”
– Make multi tile objects look properly on fire
– Change how fire looks
– Make fresh fire linger for at least 5 minutes before dying out if there is no oxygen
– Fix a bunch of small bugs

v0.5.3 (2021.04.07)
– Upgrade Unity to 2021.1.1f
– Fix ship engines not being generated properly
– Fix some sounds not playing after 48 days of computer uptime
– Make game brighter
– Remove cursor light
– Fix floor lights not turning off when their energy node gets switched off
– Fix info icons occasionally not showing up on an object after an icon of a group was hidden
– Fix some electricity grid bugs related to devices taking damage
– Add new Story Event: “Matter Reactor malfunction”
– Add new Story Event: “Electrical device broke down”
– Add new Story Event: “Capsule Loot: Random Material”
– Add a way to disassemble opened storage capsules
– Rename Printer to Assembler
– Make game load resilient to missing object definitions

v0.5.2 (2021.04.06)
– Fix human graphics rotation when using a bed
– Realign eating graphic offsets after graphics overhaul
– Make all beings move faster
– Fix battery discharge story event stuck forever, preventing new events
– Balance and rearrange some tech in research tree
– Make Research Tree and Starmap widgets draggable with middle and left mouse buttons
– Add “Build a Storage” goal
– Fix a few minor goal and story event related bugs

v0.5.1 (2021.04.03)
– Fix workers possibly getting stuck inside big objects (like Storage) right after constructing them
– Fix ghost electricity icons appearing if wrecked ship needs regenerating
– Make starting conditions generation more reliable
– Fix new bugs related to enlarged object areas
– Increase ambient color brightness

v0.5.0 (2021.04.02)
– Replace all graphics
– Show full object with red overlay when placement is impossible
– Fix engines and solar panels placement validation
– Fix workspot rotation incorrect with larger objects
– Fix lighting not applied correctly on tall objects close to walls

v0.4.6 (2021.03.07)
– Fix pulsating light source pulse working incorrectly
– Fix video settings not showing current resolution properly
– Set “run in background” setting to false by default
– Fix electricity glitch where battery would show both production and consumption at the same time
– Fix suggestion to expand electricity grid failing to initialize

v0.4.5 (2021.03.07)
– Fix being graphics not properly restored after using a shower / toilet
– Fix unreachable charge station no longer usable after 1 failure to reach it
– Fix missing Carbon graphics
– Unlock Construction right from the start
– Make glass floor reflection more visible
– Fix trying connect a node to not constructed connector showing wrong error
– Make electricity grid overlay more understandable

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