expected: before the end of August 2013
- !IN DEVELOPMENT! the full completion of the FARC Universe Generator (FUG). For now only the star system and stars generation is implemented. The big step concerns the orbital objects themselves (the planets and asteroids).
- the implementation of the first complete and definitive star and planetary system: the Alpha Centauri system (the one actually in game is only a placeholder for testing purposes). That also includes all the customized surface maps, which will be required, generated with a 3rd application: Fractal Terrains.
- the ability to load a saved game including a 3D scene cleanup w/o put any interference in the game flow. That will include certainly some audit of the code concerning the 3d "engine" (if I can call my basic stuff like that).
- the implementation of the automation for the planetary survey.
- [optional] the turn-based subsystem.
First, I'm sorry to not have made a release video about the Alpha 5 features, like I said.
I'll do one once the FUG is complete, I really want to complete this tool before since that's the biggest part of the alpha 6.
One new part of the FUG is now complete: the orbits generation.
It's the basis of the generation of a planetary system: it determining if a star can have orbits by taking in account many parameters like if the stellar system is a single, binary or trinary system, the mean separations and the minimal approach distance between them.
Now I begin to update the FUG interface to enter manual parameter for orbital objects. It will be possible to design by hand some data and let the rest to be automatically generated.
It will be useful since I will use some real information about extrasolar planetary systems.
OK, you can always argue: "if there's a tool to generate entire systems, why to have pre-designed ones in game and not random ones?" Well, it's not technically possible, since the customized surface of planets are generated by a third party tool and aren't only cosmetic because the determining of the types of regions are based on it, in other term it's the only required manual part of star system generation w/ the FUG. Since all the data are linked between them, to make predetermined data sets randomly distributed isn't also possible. In other ways, I don't have skills to make a custom fractal mapping generation and a random regions distribution system.
But anyway, as I said in a previous post, some orbital object's data are randomized in FARC, like the resources, the biosphere and any "special features and artifacts" the surface can have.
Finally, the asteroids belts are reinstated; it wasn't the case before this alpha because I didn't know how to implement them. In the previous failed iterations there were present but... unplayable.
Now, they will be present and fully playable, in fact the solution was already here, right in front of me: they are treated like satellites. The belt itself is the main object, and it will be possible to browse and interact with each asteroid of a belt by browsing them like planet's satellites. So in the Alpha 6 you will certainly see at least one asteroids belt in the final generated alpha centauri system.
That's all for now.