Alpha 10 - iteration #08: The Limits of Random Generation vs the Existing Data

As usual the development takes more time because I have to push the test for certains objectives.

For example, Provide #Period A#Resource; a colony must provide a A#Resource for its faction of allegiance. A fixed volume of A#Resource is taken at a specified #Period.

The logic seems basic at first, we just need to know how much resources are available in the game, select one randomely and generate the rest of the objective's data.
Well not so fast... What happen is the player start on an icy asteroid and the objective ask him to provide uranium ore? That would certainly pose a problem. Same if water is asked and the player start on a liquid methane world, like the Saturn's satellite Titan.

Of course we can imagine to develop certains way of production and refining, but as a reminder these objectives are for the early game when the player has pretty limited manpower, infrastructures and usable technology.

For that purpose I creating a Environment Resources Class List  (sorry for the pompous name) that contains all the tests relative to the orbital object of destination for the players colony. It takes into account the following data: the orbital object type, its environment (Space, Restricted or Free), its atmosphere and its hydrosphere.
So in the end a custom list of resources is created and will be used if one iteration of the Provide #Period A#Resource objective is called.

There is a second objective, Reach a Capacity of Production, that can uses not only resources but also any of the other classes of products.
This one can be simpler because the list of possible products is based on strategic wants of the Factions of Allegiance.
Of course since again it target the early game, the products to produce can be resources, refined products or manufactured ones (on a crude level).
Normally a colony should be able to generate with more or less difficulty these products, and since a backstory can automatically reject certain objectives, the configuration of colonies that cannot doing basic industry shouldn't be concerned.

The designing and coding of all this requires certain documentation cross-over between the main document, the list of CPS objectives and the products. But it is doable.

All that to only generate objectives that can be plausible and not completely random to a failure.

Rest assured that the rest of the objectives doesn't requires such convoluted logic and are more easier to code than the two that have been exposed in this post.

So that's all for now, a lots of talk for sure :)

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: Dual Implementation: Dynamic Generation of CPS Objectives

After this mortuary pause, I started tonight to finally implement the code for the dynamic generation of CPS objectives, I already pushed some commits of it.The code is incomplete yet but all the design is done, so it is a question of working my fingers in ObjectPascal.

I will continue to work on the interface to setup a new game in same time.

Once these two are done I will rework the process of the data of a new game and re-enable some parts of the previous code.

One month and 22 days, yes we CAN.😒😉

Also a bit OT, I just seen that I removed my Google + account...
I did a removal of a "service" some times ago but... apparently I removed the whole account.
So yep, I remade the one I had but lost anything, that's... great.

Anyway thanks for your interest, stay tuned!


CPS: Colonization Phase System  

OT / Picture: Space Farewell to a Family Member

My father passed away today after fighting a cancer for about 8 months, so to stay a bit related to this blog I will post this picture below in his memory.
Copyright Jakub Grygier
http://www.notodoanimacion.es/2016/01/ilustraciones-y-showreel-del-artista.html
http://www.animalstudios.es/estudio/

And a tune, from Hammock:


FARC dev will resume tomorrow.

Take care.

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: Synchronous Development; New Game Setup and Generation of CPS Objectives

I wasted again some real life time because I'm looking for a new appartment... excuses excuses... but the interface to setup a new game is ongoing and I finally fixed and completed the rules to generates CPS objectives dynamically, and I coded part of it during my breaks at my work.
The rules were already done but I failed in the logic of some steps, I was probably tired the day I did the mistakes...for sure!

That mean when the interface work is done, the generation of CPS objectives will be done too.
Since it was a fork of the code I will have just to merge it into the root tree and complete procedures and functions names.

I don't do GitHub commits for now because I want to complete the rework of the interface first.
I will commit the whole once done, and commit the merged code of the objectives too.

CPS: Colonization Phase System 

Keep Alive and Dev Day Post

Sorry for the lack of news and commits for two weeks, I had some real life priorities to fulfill.

Today is a day off for me so I'll dev all day long and will start in 15 minutes.

Thanks for your interest and have a great Friday!

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: New Game Setup - Faction of Allegiance Interface Done, the Rest in WIP

The interface element to select the faction of allegiance, expedition and backstory is now done and working. It's a very simple tree which has the merit to see the options available.

Of course the options above are... pitiful at best, but it will be populated when I will add new factions and their expeditions / backstories in 2018 with the last phase of fleshing out this alpha 10.

The Proceed and Cancel buttons are also reinstated.

Now I'm working on the faction datapad, which looked like this on the screenshot below:
It will have now five tabs:
  • History: will contain the descriptive texts on the selected backstory and will also contain an excerpt about the selected faction of allegiance.
  • Colonization: will contain the detailed informations about the special rules of the selected backstory and it's CPS data; i.e. the viability thresholds and the line of credit (if any).
  • Population: will contain the data about the settings of the population for the selected backstory including the size classes and the partitioning between each race, ethnic group and category.
  • Equipment: will contain the details of the starting space units and equipment.
  • Game Options: will contain any option linked to a game (ie not application based). It will be empty for the release but will be populated over the time.
Once this part is done I will work on the initialization and process of a new game, according the settings via the interface above, and will also implement all the dynamic generation of the data and the colonization objectives.

The step one, described in this post, will be finally done after all of that.

Well, it's not a very meaty post but at least you know were the development is.

Thanks for your interest and stay tuned.

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: New Game Setup - Interface Overhaul Status

Just a small post to inform that the ovehaul is ongoing.
Many parts of the interface will be reused but the one that in under heavy changes is about the factions of allegiance, expedtions and backstories. The old interface with the Colonization Modes and the drop-down to select a faction is now removed, the whole will be replaced by a selection tree that will display in a hierarchical all the possible starting factions and backstories.

The tabbed panel that existed before, like in the screenshot below, will continue to exists with many modifications. For example the first tab will be about an introductive description that will display the multiple origins (if more than one available) for a selected backstory and also a data excerpt about the selected faction of allegiance. The second tab will be about all technical details, ie; special rules of the backstory and informations on the data for the colonization phase.

The rest of the interface, the cancel and proceed buttons and the flag, will stay the same. The window will be (and already is now) completely fixed for the keyboard and interface focus, as it is for the Orbital Object panel for example.

Here's a screenshot of the old interface to setup a new game:


I don't have one with the changes yet, since I prefer to complete entirely this step before.

That's it for now.

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: Second Backstory on Hold, Resuming of Development (New Game Setup)

I stopped the design of the second backstory, The Knowledge Pillars (title replacing the previous Knowledge Hoppers), for the reason that this one requires objectives about research & development. Since this system isn't implemented on a game level (only data structures and the tech trees until level 4 are for now) and that only a part of the tech trees are also in the game, it would not be relevant to have this one now in the game. For information the basics of the research & development system is planned to be implemented for the last iterations (#9 and #10) of the alpha 10 once the current one is released.

So I just started to finally updating the code for the setup of a new game, including the interface. It also include what's left to do for the Colonization Phase System, especially for the dynamic generation and new process of the objectives.


So in clear the release of this iteration will only have one backstory for now, but that will suffice to show the changes with the setup of a new game and the colonization objectives.

To make short, here's the updated plan until release:
1/ mass modification of the setup of a new game, including the dynamic data set for the expeditions and backstories and the determination of colonization objectives

2/ completion of the changes of the CPS including the process of the objectives over the time, the calculation of the scores and the final (game) day of the colonization phase.

3/ basic completion of the online updater with buttons and display of information about the available update.

I have 3.5 months to make it real, so let's try it!

Thanks for your interest.

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: Seeds of the Unity Done

The data for the backstory Seeds of the Unity are now fully implemented since yesterday.

I will begin the second and last one, the Knowledge Hoppers, tonight after my job.

For reminder, the next step will be about to update the setup of a new game and its interface and also update and complete all the paused changes of the Colonization Phase System.

The final step will be to complete the online updater and this iteration will be done.

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: Starting Equipment (Data Structures) Done

The step 2 (see here) of the short-term dev plan is done; the new data structure of the starting equipment of the backstories is now implemented.

Step 3 (the completion of the implementation of the two Magellan Unity's backstories) has also progressed a bit, and the first backstory is nearly done, I just need to finish to add the equipment.

I will add the second backstory after that and, finally, will work and update the setup of a new game, including the user's interface but also all the dynamic parts to setup the data of a chosen backstory.
Because for now, no code has been implemented to take care of these changes.

Finally my slow progression in this design approach the last step... I just try to design something final that I will not modify again in three years...which is not an easy task.

OK, enough self-flagellation (hehe), thanks for your interest.

tiny OT: PC Switch Done, Resuming of Development; Tonight and /or Tomorrow

I finally made the final switch to the new PC. A lot of cleaning and disassembling / assembling.

Anyway I just to put a final touch and it will be done, so I will resume the development tonight or tomorrow (day off here in Canada). I passed about 2.5 weeks to setup the system and softwares on the new PC when it was on its bench. It was a slow process but it allowed a painless transition.

That's all, no more OT posts and back to normal :)

tiny rant: More Free (dev) Time Ahead

Just a small post to inform you that I stopped playing a MMO recently. I was a player on it for the last 4 years and pass (too much) time on it.
I made some change into my hobbies and redirected my points of interest past weeks, and a MMO doesn't fit anymore in my free time.

Why it is relevant for this project? Because I will redirect a good part of this extra free time to dev FARC.

So yep the thing is uninstalled and anyway the new PC I built, and that I actually configuring and setup, will not have many games and will be for work/dev/3d and so on.

That's it, enough talking.

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: Equipment List Revamping, Attitude and Physical Status for Space Units


Since the population setting is now finalized (but not initialized yet) in the data and code, I'm working with the last part of the backstories' data structure; the equipment list.

As a reminder, each backstory provide some background, setup kind of difficulty levels for the independence of the player's colony and faction, setup the population and finally provide a list (at least in the older versions) of equipment.
This equipment encompasses space units and products (resources, materials, equipment and so on) and so varies depending on which backstory is chosen.

I thought initially that this part will only have some refactoring and nothing else, but as usual I was far from the truth.
I had to separate the unique list into two ones; one for the starting space units, and one for the equipment. Since equipment will be dynamically set, according to the population size, I had to dissociate the equipment's location from a fixed point of view.
Anyway before that, the products were added in the game via harcording and not via XML setup.

Also I changed the old space unit's status into two ones; one for Attitude and one for Physical Status.
The attitude, encompass nearly all of the old status, outside of the damage levels, and indicate in an abstracted way the current attitude of a spacecraft, like being in low orbit for example.

Talking about orbit, I also implemented (at least in the data) the three types of orbits that will be in the game in the future; low orbit, geosynchronous orbit and gravitational limit.
I will talk more in detail about it, when I will implement their uses in the game.

The physical status is pretty obvious and indicate, on an abstracted way, the level of damage of a space unit in plain text, like Damaged or Dead Wreck. It also contains the state of the power grid.

So that's all. I'm literally at the step 2 (see here) of the short-term dev plan.
A bit of step 3 is also done since I put the data of the first backstory in the XML file, outside of the starting space units and equipment.

I continue to hope to release this iteration before the end of this year. I will be more active anyway, since the Summer goes to an end.

Thanks for your interest and stay tuned!

NB: If you wonder why all this talk and no GitHub commit (the Horror hehe) it's because I'm actually working on it tonight and will make one or two commits before the bed :)

Out Of Topic: Some Delay Because of Hardware Upgrade

Sorry for the lack of commit updates since the 13 because I'm in the process to upgrade my current computer.
I haven't replaced it yet because I do a slow process of testing / overclocking and also I need to test , setup and configure the applications (like the IDE,  3D software and so on) and the virtual machines.


Anyway that take good bits of my free time that I don't use for FARC.

But it's OK, the excitation to receiving boxes and boxes of new hardware have now deflated so I can go back to the normal routine and continue to setup the other system from time to time.

Thanks and have a good day/night.

Magellan Unity Population Details, Backstory Population Work-In-Progress

I worked on the design side to details a bit more about the society of the Magellan Unity, especially about how this faction consider the artificial intelligences and anything that touch the biotechnologies and transhumanism.
That was a necessary step to define the composition of the population of this faction and by incidence how it will define the ones of its expedition and related backstories.
This part is done and so I'm able to finally design and implement the data concerning the setup of the population for at least the first backstory (the Seeds of the Unity). the second one will follow.
The design part left to complete how the population will be set concern the categories (like the colonists, technicians and so on...) and I will finally implement the data into the XML file.

The last part of data is about the list of equipment, but the current and "old" one will not change; the data structure will not have any modification since it work OK as it is.

After that I will work on the second backstory, the Knowledge Hoppers, and it will finally done for this part.

You will see that, when this iteration will be released one day, the description of the Magellan Unity faction has undergone several changes including more information.

I haven't made any git commit since most of the work was design related.

Anyway that's all for now, thanks for your interest in this slow crawling project.

NB: edited, as usual I audit my bad English and typos after to have published the post...

A Note About The New Dynamic Population Setting for a New Game + Short Dev Plan

Before this iteration the population was hardcoded, ie I defined into the code how much Colonists and other categories of population will be present in a new game. Of course this was made for testing purposes and now all that doesn't exists anymore since the population will be set according to the data of a chosen expedition and backstory.

More, the amount of population will varies from one game to another, even if the player chose the same expedition and backtory. This variation will be ruled by a min/max range.
All these new data for the setting of a population are now fully implemented, I only need to populate the settings for the two backstories of the Magellan Unity and of course delete the part of code that hardcoded the population...

The categories of population will be set by design, ie there will not be any variations from a game to another as, for example, the proportion of Clones Workers. Only the total amount of it will varie (ie 20 Clones Worker for a Total Population of 200) in regard of the variation of the total population in the chosen expedition.
The setup of categories support of course the multiracial / multiethnics population framework.

In the end, the Line of Credit (if used), the population and the basic list of common core of technologies will be set dynamically.
In some way the equipment given to an expedition will be able to vary in volume, but not in nature, proportionally to the total population and according to a base variance.

So the short-term dev plan is:
  1. To complete the population setting step, and populate Magellan Unity (MUN) faction data
  2. To refactoring and update the equipment list.
  3. To complete the two  MUN backstories data and implement them
  4. To rework the interface to setup a new game, including all the changes in the expeditions and backstories
After that, I would be able to work again on the Colonization Phase System and complete its interface changes.

That's all again, stay tuned and continue to have a good Summer!

Small Keep Alive Post + FARC Open Source Again

I'm very sorry for the lack of news but I took some time off by early July and the last two weeks I had a health problem (vertigo / lack of balance when standing up). I couldn't do anything really worthwhile.

I recovered since so it is time to resume the development again...

I also finished my stupid behavior, which was to put FARC into closed source after a community of free/open source  gamedev (no name called so I will not say who and which community) ejected this project. It was stupid to put it closed-source because anyway FARC stay under the GPL license and free from air, so keeping the source out of people was meaningless and a waste of time.

So, the source of FAR Colony is again in: https://github.com/farcodev/farcolony
A link has been also added on the top of the posts.

And yes tomorrow I will add a readme and some notices that FARC use proprietary third parties.

That's all, I have work to do now :)

Alpha 10 - iteration #08: Colonization Modes Begone, Last Future Iterations Update, Weather System

"I will not make any post until this mess become a finally finished unicorn and is running. It will take again some time but I will keep you in touch for sure!"
As usual I cannot keep my words... anyway to keep you updated with small posts is fine, instead to say nothing for one month.

The old and deprecated Colonization Modes are now really gone, I implemented the expeditions and backstories yesterday night.
Since, I working in the non-player factions XML database by adding the data of the unique type of Expedition, for the Magellan Unity, and its two types of backstories. The file is growing fast due to the fact that there are more data than before, a normal thing considering that the old objectives were entirely hardcoded.

For now it is impossible to setup a new game, and that as long as I haven't updated the related user's interface with theses new changes. The code stay a bit of a mess but is being cleared time after time.

Also I have an announce for the two last iterations left, I will merge the development of the iteration #9 and #10. The rationale is that the #10 is the full completion of any current part of the game, and the #9 is about the completion of the tech trees, so the goal is about the same.
And since there will be more than one online sub-release (the updater will be available for the release of the current iteration), I can update the whole with no precise order. Anything must be completed, at least at a basic stage.
So to make things simpler, the next iteration will be directly the alpha 10, and will be finally the last for this alpha 10, but not the least since it will be the biggest of the ten iterations...

I will also implement the basics of the weather & geophysics system in this iteration 10, instead to make it for a future version, the why is that is a core system, and should be implemented for the alpha 10. Most of this system is already designed on paper, and needs to be put in the main design document before implementation. Yes, the planets and asteroids will also move on their orbits... incredible isn't it? Eight years to reach such millestone.... OK hahaha

That's all for now, stay tuned.

Alpha 10 - It. #08:Side Experiment - Better and Final Encyclopedia

As a side experiment I tested a quick and dirty implementation of the web pages of the knowledge base directly in the game, and it worked pretty well.
So for the release of this iteration, the current encyclopedia interface will be replaced by the entire interface of the Knowledge Base website (you can take a look at it here), since its presentation, linking and web interface will always be better than what I will never do in the game, including research in the base, keywords and so on.
Of course it is out of question that FARC requires an internet connection to playing it fully, so the knowledge base / encylopedia will be an offline version of the online one, and the two will be updated in same time by a strict procedure, so there will be no discrepancy between the two.
All the data and texts already present in the in-game encyclopedia will be ported to the knowledge base before the release, so nothing will be lost. The data will not be dynamically displayed but updated manually like the rest of the texts, it is a small trade-off and again requires a certain discipline during the update of the data.

Also the linking between the interface and the encyclopedia will continue to work, the code will change a bit but it is just a question of page redirection in this case.

It changes nothing for the hints and their texts since it is completely separated already.

That's all. I know it is late in regard of my past due release schedule (end of June) but it will be released one day.
Stay tuned.

Site Update: New Page; Development Roadmap

I created a new page, called Development, and you can reach it via the page menu above.

I decided to centralize the information about what is done in the current version and/or iteration, what is in developement and what is planned and pending. It isn't a far future roadmap since I prefer to inform you about real development instead of some fantasy that perhaps will never been done on time.


Of course I will update it over the time.

That's all, stay tuned under the Sun! And thank you for your interest :)

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Updates on the Ongoing CPS Overhaul

I continuing to update the CPS, including a complete overhaul of the data structure of the non-player factions, the implementation of the expeditions and backstories, and the overhaul of the CPS itself including the objectives.

It is useless to say that all parts (and there are many) of the code concerned by these updates are a real mess, at least for now.
But the transition is ongoing, I already cleaned up the previous and deprecated colonization modes and the hardcoded CPS objectives.

I implemented the new data structures for the CPS objectives database and the in-game objectives.
Part of the CPS objectives is now contained into a new XML file and processed like any other asset of the game, like the infrastructures. It contains 3 basic data for any objective and the complete list SPM weight that can influence each objective.

As a reminder, each policy and meme of the SPM can affect a CPS objective on how it will be set and chosen during the dynamic setting of the player's objectives.
I put these data in a XML file, because it will be more convenient to update the amount of data through it than directly in the code.
This database is always loaded by default into FARC, regardless if the player set a new game or load an existing one.

The part of each objective that will be coded will be all the calulations and tests that will occur when the score of an objective will be updated. It's too complicated and not efficient to put that into a XML file.


So that's it. Since the CPS, like for many system in the game, affect other parts of the game, the whole need to be updated each time that I remove an old data or add a new one, it is a painful but necessary process in this case. You can see that as bad design but, it is often difficult to keep a long view of parts of the code, and how you will use it, on a time span of many years.

At least these ideas that I implementing are final (really! :) )

I will not make any post until this mess become a finally finished unicorn and is running. It will take again some time but I will keep you in touch for sure!
As usual I underestimated the amount of work that will be necessary, especially in the dependencies of the CPS code.

Enough ranting, have a great day and thanks for your interest!


CPS: Colonization Phase System    SPM: Socio-Political Matrix

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Implementation Done; Multiracial / Multiethnic Framework

FARC is now supporting officially a multiracial population, at least in its data structures. That will pave the way for the alpha 11. I finished the last lines of code during my lunch break (I always stating it, in case a co-worker read this post...).
So tonight I will start to implement the unique type of expedition for the Magellan Unity (see a previous post here), and two of its backstories. That include of course the many update necessary in the user's interface to setup a new game and also the updates of the non-player factions' data structures and how they are initialized.

Once it is done, I will be finally able to complete the implementation of the CPS objectives and all the changes necessary in this system.

The last part of the development of this iteration will be about the end of the colonization phase that needs a big stack of work and fleshing-up.

That's all, stay tuned.


CPS: Colonization Phase System

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Multiracial / Multiethnic Framework Implementation

I overhauling and updating many parts of the code to implement these expeditions and backstories, because it has changed a lot since the old Colonization Modes and the resulting code will be final, out of future expansion.

In this optic, I reworking completely the data structure of the non-player factions and how the data of expeditions and backstories will be managed, and that include the setting up of the populations.
Since the populations in FARC will be multiracial and multiethnic in the future (until now only the humans are present), I decided to implement already the data structure of this future expansion.
So in clear, the population's data structure will support already multiples races and ethnicities but will be only fully managed when I will code and release the alpha 11.
So by this way this avoids to have to redo, one time again, part of the code in these data when the time will come.

That's all for now, thanks for your interest!

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Three Backstories Confirmed for the Magellan Unity

On the design side I continue to working on the expeditions' backstories, and I finally found three for the Magellan Unity faction. Two of them implementable right away, the third one requires the update on the population to integrate the multiracial and multi-ethnics inhabitants (with the Artificial Intelligences and Clones races), and is planned for the alpha 11 once the iteration 10 of the alpha 10 will be done.

Here is the complete list of expeditions and backstories for the 8 power blocs:

  • North American Coalition (NORAC)
    • Expedition - Private Venture
      • Backstory - Group of Families
      • Backstory - Private Pioneers
      • Backstory - Core of Rogue Artificial Intelligences
      • Backstory - Excentric Wealthy Individual
      • Backstory - Commercially Sponsored Colonists
    • Expedition - State Funded Colony 
      • Backstory - Scientific Outpost
      • Backstory - Military Outpost
      • Backstory - Helium-3 Conglomerate
      • Backstory - Space Energetic Complex
  • Earthling Space United Nations (ESUN)
    • Expedition - Open Colony
      • Backstory -  Children of Gaya
      • Backstory - Eve Haven
      • Backstory - Freedom Dissidents / Refugee Group
    • Expedition - INSIC Colony (INSIC = Inner Sphere Industrial Consortium)
      • Backstory - Craddle Endowement Project (CREP)
      • Backstory - Mother Earth... (MOVERA, title in WIP)
  • People's Republic of China (PRC)
    • Expedition - Industrial Complex
      • no backstory designed yet
    • Expedition - Pioneer Settlement
      • no backstory designed yet
  • Russia Federation (RUFE)
    • Expedition - Consortium Colony
      • no backtory designed yet
  • European Union (EU)
    • Expedition - Scientific Base
      • no backstory designed yet
    • Expedition - Private / Civilian Base
      • no backstory designed yet
  • Berngham's Community (BC)
    • Expedition - New World Community
      • no backstory designed yet
  • Neo-Believers Federation (NEBEF)
    • Expedition - Pilgrim Community / Holy Settlement
      • no backstory designed yet
  • Magellan Unity (MUN)
    • Expedition - Autonomous Remote Colony
      • Backstory - Quantum Spark of the Void
      • Backstory - The Knowledge Hoppers
      • Backstory - Seeds of the Unity

Please note, that outside of those of the MUN that will be implemented in this present iteration, none is finalized by design yet, and as you can see a good number of expeditions haven't ideas of backstories yet too.
But it can give you an idea of the whole. Many of them, out of those that requires expansion of the game as the multiracial population, will be implemented during the build of the interation 10 of this current alpha. 

That's all, stay tuned.

Updates of the Knowledge Base

  • Introduction: addition of this child topic to inform about the last changes.
  • Introduction / About FARC: the correct font is used for the text. It wasn't like the rest due to a bad copy/paste.
  • Introduction / Glossary: new entries; Extrasolar System, Star System, Stellar System, Transworld Corporation.
  • Introduction / FAQ: the correct font is used for the text. It wasn't like the rest due to a bad copy/paste. Some formatting has also been applied.
  • The Background: populated section with some explanations and links to each respective subsection.
  • The Background / The Context of the Game: populated section.
  • The Background / General History: populated section.
  • The Background / Power Blocs: populated section with some explanations and links to each respective subsection.
  • The Background / Power Blocs / Magellan Unity (MUN): addition of the child topic History and its text.
Stay tuned.

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Colonization Phase System - Entire Reverse Engineering Done, Start of Overhaul

Sorry for the lack of news, as usual on spring and summer I tend to work "a bit less".
But my main development vector was to reverse engineering the entire CPS to finally overhaul it with the new structures and management of the CPS objectives.
During this reverse work I found useless code, some repetitions and ... errors. Yes! Surprising isn't it?

So now I'm starting to implement the new iteration of this particular system which will be a bit less of a mess of code. Not that this system was stellar by itself, especially since the few objectives already in the game were basic and hardcoded, but its implementation was convoluted or at least not clear.
I had to draw,  UML-like, the entire structure of the system and the linked calls between the routines.

Well, now it is done so it is time to develop the final version (out of any future expansion) of this system.

I will make a post when the entire overhaul will be done, including the generation of the objectives, the data structures, and the relations with the expeditions and backstories.
It will take some time so don't worry if you don't see any news before some weeks.

Thanks, have a great spring and summer and, stay tuned :)

CPS: Colonization Phase System  

OK I keep this Blog :)

Tonight I updated the main site, and especially the Knowledge Base.
There isn't a lot yet in this base but it expanding.
I simply take the texts from the main game design document, paste it in this doc and try to correct and format it the best I can. English as usual isn't my main language, and even if I progressed a bit, it is far to be perfect. But I try to keep it clean.

I decided to keep this blogspot for the main news, so don't panic you will not have to change anything in June.
But the main parts of the site (the downloads and the knowledge base, will link toward the main site.

I already changed the link and text of the previous "About / FAQ & Contact" of the main menu of this blog. It now redirects to the wiki.farcolony.com.
I also added a Contact menu item and it will redirect to the contact page of the main site.
The downloads are already stored on the main site, which is a necessary step for the online updater.

If you don't like this way, and are a certain number to not like it. I could switch completely to the main site anytime. But for now it stays like that.
I now that even for an obscure project like mine, people like their usual ways... and I don't want to lose some additional readers too, so I mixed the two sites.

That's all, stay tuned.

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Dev of Expeditions and Backstories.

I started a new build to implement the expeditions and their backstories.
Since it is a core element to the new way to generate CPS objectives, I must code it before I even finish the one of the objectives.

I don't think I will release this iteration before June 2017, but I prefer to pack it with all the planned stuff than make again a semi-finished part.

Keep Alive Post - May Edition

Here a post to inform you that the dev of FARC continues its route. I haven't posted anything since April 27 because the development is again about the same thing, the CPS objectives and their generation.

Also this year the seasonal allergies strike me pretty good so to speak, and it disturb me enough to dev the game sometime. OK, it sounds like a good excuse but yep :)

Anyway I'm here and FARC too, and the next post will have a bit more content than this one.

Sorry for the lack of news and thanks for your interest!

Alpha 10 - It. #08: CPS Objectives + Main Site Updates

The XML database, storing the basic data for each CPS objective and their SPM weights used for their generation, is done.

Now the most of the work consist of the code itself to generate and manage these objectives, including their proper rules.
It is some kind of work since I do a sort of overhaul compared to how the objectives were (badly) managed in the game, until now.

Aside that, I also working onto updating the main site, farcolony.com ; the gallery page is fully updated, and the recent screenshots are linked. I also added a contact form to send me emails if you feel the need (you can keep hate mails :).

I also building a knowledge base, the basics of it is at http://wiki.farcolony.com/, built with HelpNDoc.
For now there is not much but in the near future I will update it with the basics of introduction (About, Requirements, Glossary, FAQ), the Mechanics and Context of a New Game, the Background, the Space and Universe in the Game and the Game Interface.

Yep a real documentation, who could knew that.

I will switch completely to my main site @ June 1st. I will let a last post on this blog to inform any viewer to update their bookmarks.

So that's it for now, stay tuned!


CPS: Colonization Phase System    SPM: Socio-Political Matrix (memes and policies)

Alpha 10 - It. #08: CPS Objectives Linking Done - Resuming of Dev

The linking is finally done.

Now I resuming completely the development and I will begin today to implement the new data into the CPS objectives' data structure, the generation rules for the objectives, and the new objectives.

Tthanks for your interest!

 
CPS: Colonization Phase System

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Linking of CPS Objectives with SPM Update + Updates on the Main Site

I added a wiki page on my main site, http://wiki.farcolony.com/, for future documentation purpose. But I need to set it up first.


In the near future I will complete the setup of the main site, http://farcolony.com, and I will completely switch the news on it.
I will keep this blogspot page active, for a while, to display a post warning to switch to the main site.

So by this way anything will be centralized on the same location.

On the dev side I'm at about 50% in my work to link the SPM memes and policies with the CPS Objectives.
Once done I will begin the complete development of these objectives and their generation.

I haven't done further development on the online update tool yet, but it is working and the required work left is only about informations and cosmetic. so it will be done before the release.
I continue to hope to release this iteration by the end of June, but for this time I prefer to not confirm anything until all is done, no more bad schedule for 2017 and beyond! :)

That's all, thanks for your interest.


CPS: Colonization Phase System     SPM: Socio-Political Matrix

Blog Update: About / FAQ & Contact + Download Pages - Small Dev Notice

I finally updated these two pages of the blog:

About / FAQ & Contact: I updated a bit the FAQ and also put a contact information with a farcolony.com email.

Download: this page is now fully updated and link to the files hosted in farcolony.com


There is no special news on the dev in comparison of the previous post; I continuing to link the SPM and also I work on the final update in the design of the dynamic system to setup the CPS objectives.
Each of them will receive a weight, if compatible with the SPM settings of the faction of allegiance and the chosen backstory by the player, calculated also from the SPM and backstories and will determine the chance to a specific objective to appear in a new game.


I also attacking the final part of the code audit of the CPS since tonight.

I will implement the objectives only after the entire pass of SPM linking for all the policies, memes, and linked objectives that will be implemented is done.

That's all, stay tuned.

NB:

Sorry for the small parts of text I forgot to complete.

CPS: Colonization Phase System - the system that manage the first phase of the game
SPM: Socio-Political Matrix - the system that manage the policies and memes of the game

Alpha 10 - It. #08: FARC Updater is Working (but WIP yet)

I passed all the evening and part of the night to build a very basic updater and backtest it with the hosted files, through some scenarios, and it was fully working at the end of the session.

It needs some additional work to be fully presentable, like to have information on the new build, saved game files comptability, the display of the last changes and the progress of downloading / updating, but it is on the right path.
The third-party tool helps a lot since I'm not too much into networking

Today I will work only on the CPS objectives by continuing to process all the possible linking and incomptabilities with the SPM memes and policies, and the backstories.

That's all for now.

CPS: Colonization Phase System     SPM: Socio-Political Matrix

Online Update + Alpha 10 - It. #08: Linking of CPS Objectives with SPM and Backstories

I finally registered to a host service, DreamHost, because the dropbox solution wasn't working.
Now, the future files for online updating have finally a home and I also registered www.farcolony.com, which will be pretty simple to find.
I also started to develop the updater, it will not be a big thing but will contains certain info like which build is online, what are the current and previous changes and if the saved game files, of the version of FARC currently installed, will be compatible or not.
This last point will induce an update in the code to save/load saved game and include version numbers.

For now I will continue to use this blog, but all the files, ie the online and offline ones, will be hosted on the private host. I will update the download links of this blog once the domain is fully registered and the setup of this online service is full done.
It is certainly a commitment but it is time that FARC has its own home.

On the development side I nearly completed the rules and calculation of the CPS objectives and I started yesterday to link the SPM memes and policies to them, when something is correlated.
That's mean that the selection and the setup of objectives, even if a bit random, will keep a certain coherence between the faction of allegiance, its SPM setup and the backstories.

Talking of backstories I made a good amount of overhaul, for all the playable factions, to include the expeditions and their possible backstories by design. Of course for now, since only Magellan Unity is implemented, the development itself will concern only this faction but the design is global.

So many things progress in the same time and it is pretty fun.

A last thing, all these changes, even if I remove myself from GiHub, will not change the status of FAR Colony.
So it will stay free as air until I die and beyond, and since I started the code under GPL 3, FARC will stay released under this same license and so will stay open to modifications and such.
The assets stay under their own and proper licensing and credits, in accordance to the choices of their creators and contributors.

Thanks for the reading and... stay tuned :)

NB:

CPS: Colonization Phase System
SPM: Socio-Political Matrix

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Short Notice; Web Updater Bought

As the title say, I have bought it on March 17 as planned in the previous post.
I will keep you updated on this secondary tool  for FARC when it will be built.

That's it for now, thanks.

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Expeditions + Backstories Design and Web Updater On the Way

On the design side I'm working on the expeditions and backstories.

Expeditions are the old colonization modes, and backstories are background stories in which the player will pick one and will serve as a sort of starter story, for the future faction and colony of the player, but also will affect the gameplay for the Colonization Phase. They will be implemented, at least for the only one faction in the game for now, in this iteration since they are important parts of the game system.

Also I'm going to buy today, after my job, @TMS the third-party tool to make a file/web updater. I wanted to wait until April but my budget is pretty green so why waiting one month?
The web updater will be an independent executable from the one for FARC and the player will be able to launch it via a standard shortcut or directly through a FARC's menu item.
I don't know if I will release it before the release of this iteration of the game, but in any case it will be part of the iteration's package. And since it will be an external application, I will also deliver it in its own package for those who don't want to download and install the new iteration by themselves.
As said in a previous post, I will use dropbox to store and distribute the updated files and the updater will take the required files from it.
Maybe I will drop completely Github, since my last misadventure with the open source community, I will see it by the time to release the stuff.

Don't worry FARC will stay free as air whatever happen.

Anyway for now I have real work and dev work to do, so stay tuned. :)

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Resuming of Development; End of Audit, Objectives Implementation

As usual I shouldn't talk about duration of development, but I will finally resume the development of FARC tonight.

Not all the objectives will be implemented since certain of them requires more advanced development in certain part of the game, but in total 10 objectives will be present in the game; 5 for the Economic status, 4 for the Social status and 1 for the Military level.

The rest requires some data and assets not yet implemented like additional infrastructures, the rules for the control system of the regions, more data for the SPM memes and policies (especially the requirements), the full implementation of space units, and the game events.

In total, 12 aren't implemented, but they will once the required parts become present in the game.

So in a first part I will complete the audit of the CPS, and in a second part I will fully implement these ten objectives.

Also for the online updater; I will use finally Dropbox, the host provider I wanted for a FTP doesn't support multiple distribution of files. So since apparently I can interface the third-party tool via HTTP, I can use the public folder of a Dropbox to distribute online updates for FARC. Of course I will need to make the updater first and test this "theory". I'm not a pro at all for networking stuff, but this thing seems straightforward.
As said previously I plan to buy the tool in March or April, developping the updater itself will not take a lot of time, thanks to the tool.

Oh, and finally, talking about third party tools; FARC has been ejected from a certain open source gamedev community, because I use a non-free third party tool to develop it (among other addons) and I don't provide compilation procedures. It is an outcast since January, but I just seen it some days ago, because of course...no warning has been sent.
Since the years I was in this community, some "activists" juste woke up and said that my project is "misguiding" people.
Needless to say that I ejected myself from this community.

This kind of first world drama isn't much my thing; I only develop FARC of passion for space and game design as a hobby, and my only concern is to share it, including its source code, with anyone around this world that can be interested and have some fun with it.
I don't do politics ala GNU Software Foundation and the like, even if I respect people that make awesome assets on their free time and provides them under open licenses. I always crediting them correctly when due.
Finally my free time, as for anyone, has value and if I can use any tool, even a commercial one, to speed up the process and make it easier, I do it.

These people don't like it, it's OK, that doesn't change anything for me; FARC stay free and open source.

OK, enough of ranting and sorry for that part but it needed to be said.
Thanks for the reading and stay tuned.

NB: CPS = Colonization Phase System     SPM = Socio-Political Matrix (system for the memes and policies)

Notice About Online Update and Deadline for the Design of Objectives

I want to inform you that I haven't abandonned the idea to provide to the players the possibility to update the game directly online via FTP.
It is just that I wait for March, or April, to have the money to subscribe to a FTP storage service and also to buy the third party tool that will allow me, relatively easy, to implement an online updater in FARC.

I already chosed which provider I will take, it will be ExaVault since it is the best feature/price I found.
FTP services in my country (Canada) cannot compete with the US ones in the bang for the buck section :)
Especially for the download limits.

So that's it, it is on the way slowly but surely as usual.

I provide you also a deadline for the completion of the design of the colonization objectives; before the end of this month.
So I will resume the development from there by finishing the code audit of the CPS and by implementing the new objectives, and modifying the ones already in the game.

Stay tuned.

Alpha 10 - It. #08 - Design: Colonization Objectives, Reserves and Races

The design of the calculations, as explained in the previous post, continue its course.

This "forced" me to update the design of the reserves, in oxygen food and water, of a colony. Especially by clarifying the rules for the oxygen (and how it is used).

I also updated the part of the multiracial population in regard of reserves, that will be implemented for the future 0.6.20a11 as announced in this post. For example the Artificial Intelligences will not use any, but they will use additional energy.

That's all for now, sorry if it takes a bit of time but it is a certain work to complete the whole.

Stay tuned.

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Colonization Objectives - Design Phase Two

I have now a fair amount of objectives; 7 for the Economic status, 9 for the Social status and 6 for the Space & Military status.

I must now complete the rules and calculations for each of them and link the SPM memes and policies to them, when appliable.
It is the phase two of the design; I already updated the spreadsheets of the SPM to keep track of the linking and future implementations.

Stay tuned.


FYI: SPM = Socio-Political Matrix

Updated Dev Plan - Post Alpha 10 from 0.6 to 1.0

Since the iterations of the alpha 10 comes nearly to an end I decided to update the entire to-do-list and dev plan.

fun fact: there are 13 alphas needed before FARC is considered feature complete...
Yes I know... at the speed I working on it, it will be done in 7 years at best... which isn't entirely true because certain versions will not take 6 to 8 month to develop, but anyway it will be a long time...

It is partly why FARC is in two parts; first because of my design decisions but also because I wanted to provide something somehow playable even if the game isn't a full featured yet.
I like to make this game, but I stay realistic on its outcome; it's just another one-man open-source project.

You will find belows a bit of the near future plan, until the 1.0.0 (the entire alpha strech toward 1.6) with some of my comments:

0.6.16a10 it#08: assets and enyclopedia updates, and bugfixes of the iteration #08

0.6.17a10 it#09: expansion of the research and development system with the implementation of entirety of the technology trees, with all the technosciences and theories.

0.6.18a10 it#09: assets and enyclopedia updates, and bugfixes of the iteration #09

0.6.19a10 it#10: final iteration of the alpha 10; implementation of all the factions of allegiance, bug fixes, implementation of new planetary systems, and interface updates.

0.6.20a11: expansion of the population of the colonies; multiracial populations (humans, clones and AIs) including updates of the CSM, SPM, PGS according to these changes.

0.6.21a11:  assets and enyclopedia updates, and bugfixes of the alpha 11.

0.7.0a12:  full implementation of the design for the space units including; the SPace Unit Designer (SPUD), the equipment modules, and all the calculations. The hardcoded space units currently in the game will be removed and properly designed too.
This part seems big, but I nearly made it in a previous failed generation of FARC. So many parts of the code will be ported and fully corrected.

0.7.1a12:  assets and enyclopedia updates, and bugfixes of the alpha 12.

0.8.0a13: weather system + orbital changes; the orbital objects will finally move on their respective orbits, modifying the seasons and affecting the interplanetary transit missions.

0.8.1a13:  assets and enyclopedia updates, and bugfixes of the alpha 13.

0.9.0a14: biospheres; the fauna and flora of an orbital object, if this one supports it, will be implemented. With all the consequences  that can ensue from it.

0.9.1a14:  assets and enyclopedia updates, and bugfixes of the alpha 14.

1.0.0a15: faction's decision engine (FADE); basically the AI engine that will drive the non-player's factions of the game :)

That's all, thanks for your interest!

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Colonization Objectives - Dynamic Settings

The work of design on the objectives of the Colonization Phase System (CPS) continues.

There will not be as much of them as I said in the previous post, because I changing de mechanics on how they will be set when a new game is created.

From now, CPS objectives are fixed by design and stored in the XML data structure of each faction.
The updated and final system will set them dynamically, that means:
  • Their number will varies for each game
  • The type of objectives that will be chosen will be picked semi-randomely according to the faction of allegiance and it Socio-Political Matrix (SPM)
  • The same framework of an objective can be used for multiple data, like for example "Keep Colony's #Data at the  Level of the Allegiance Faction". #Data can be Cohesion, Health, Tension and so on
  • The calculations of the values used as objectives (like X units of a product to produce by month)  can be affected by the possible backstories of the colonists of the player's faction, and by the SPM of the faction of allegiance.
  • The calculation of the objectives' scores themselves can be affected by the possible backstories of the colonists and the SPM of the player's faction.
The main goal is to provide variations from one play to another, even if the player select the same faction of allegiance and the same backstory.

 I let down the development a bit, until the objectives are entirely completed by design. I will resume the audit of the code once it is done.
The rationale is because the system itself already exists and most of the work to do on the CPS is to implement all the new objectives, update those already existing, implement the code to set them up at the start of a new game (and removing the legacy code and XML data) and finally working on the end of the colonization phase to complete it.

That's all for now.

Alpha 10 - It. #08: Colonization Objectives - Design Updates

I updated the design of the objectives, and found new ones too. I can't tell yet how much there will be in the game, because I need to port my notes in the main document, cleanup the data and finalize the design of them (especially on how to set them and their calculations). I can only tell that there will be somehow above 20 of them and less than 30.

Of course not all objectives will be imposed to the player in a same game, it will depend on his/her choice of faction of allegiance. Nothing new with what has already been implemented for this part.

The new addition for them is in the fact that their respective scores thresolds will be set dynamically, instead of a fixed requirement like "you must produce -x- tons of -i- product before the end of the phase", with x and i as fixed values.
These requirement will have range of effects depending of the Socio-Political Matrix of the faction of allegiance and the expedition backstory (previously the colonization mode) chosen by the player.

Thus choosing a faction of allegiance and a backstory will be even more a question of balance between pros and cons according to what the player want to play.
The second outcome is that the requirements from the objectives will vary from game to game.

The updates of the encyclopedia, as explained in a previous post, continues their courses; I try not only to complete the texts but also fully link them, when appliable. So the player will be more able to jump from topic to other topics inside a same text.

That's all for now.

Alpha 10 [0.6.15] It. #08: Near Term Plan: Code Audit + Design Cleanup/Update

Just a small post to talk about the near term plan for the dev of this iteration.

The dev part is to audit the entire code of the Colonization Phase System (CPS), including refactoring.

In same time I put what's left of the paper notes about the CPS into the game design document, these are about some additional objectives, the end of the colonization phase and some additional rules concerning the CPS.

There will also be some sort of rewards, in accordance of which objective is completed and also the score reached at the end of the phase.
These rewards will be differents regarding of which status is concerned like; vehicles for the Economical status, new colonists for the Social status and military units and/or equipment for the Space & Military status.
They will not be overpowered, but will  help a bit the young colony.

A bit later in the development of this iteration I will also create a new tab, in the unified interface, for the Colonization Support/Services.
From here, and for all the duration of the phase, the player will be able to pay services for the colony, in direct link with its faction of allegiance.
These services will also have a preparation time and a lifetime, and they will also affect the colonization scores negatively.
So using them will cost money, taken from the line of credit allowed by the faction of allegiance, and will take time, a precious thing since the colonization phase is limited. And more the colony will ask help and support from its mother faction, the more the scores will be affected badly.
It will be a question of equilibrium for the player, and a sort of challenge, because for reminder; a Colonization Viability Score too low will trigger the fact that the colony, even without taking into account dependence, will not be viable at all, and that will be a game over and a failure for the player.

So that is all for now.

Back to (my real) work :)

NB: corrected some typos and grammar errors, sorry

Alpha 10 [0.6.15] It. #08: Job Break Plan; Encyclopedia Expansion + Design Cleanup

For the duration of the development of the iteration #08 I will work at my job, during my breaks (incl. lunch), on the encyclopedia and also on game design by, finally, sort and transcript my 16-18cm height of paper notes into the game design documents.
It is time to step up the design work and cleanup my lil' mess of paper stack.
There is a certain number of old bug "reports" spread in these notes too, I will have to check them and fix them if needed.

The development of the iteration #08 will start at the end of PM today after I'm back from work.

Alpha 10 - iteration#07 Assets & Encylopedia Patch Release

Reminder:
AS according to the new plan, each major release will be followed by two sub-releases; one for new assets and some bug fixing, and another one for the expansion of the encyclopedia.
Their development will be of short cycles; 2 weeks for the first sub-release, 1 week for the second one.
You don't have to get the hassle to download and install the patch, you simply can wait for the next major release that will include them.

The assets & encyclopedia patch is now released.

This small patch is only in 7zip format, you will need to uncompress it into the FAR Colony directory, at the location where you installed it, and overwrite any file when it is needed.
You must have FARC iteration #07 installed prior to this patch.

The patch is here: https://github.com/farcodev/farcolony/releases/tag/alpha10-0.6.14.1058-it07PATCH

Working Dates
From 2017-01-01 to 2017-01-22

What's Missing?
N/A

What's Next?
The Iteration #08 will start tomorrow, with the completion of the Colonization Phase System, the system that manage the first part of this game.

It will include the addition of colonization objectives, flesh out the possible end games (including the end of the colonization phase for the future transition to the "sandbox" game).

Changes

  • Encyclopedia:
    • CSM:
      • update of the Colony Data: Cohesion
  • Graphics:
    •  addition of graphics to illustrate the following infrastructures:
      • Houses Pack (free environment).
      • Nuclear Fission Reactor (any).
      • Mining Site (any/open).
  • Interface - General:
    • change in core keys stroke @1.2; preventing browsing keys in now an option that allow to deactivate them based on which element of interface call the core procedure.
  • Interface - Help Panel:
    • the code of this panel has now its own units.
    • all the keystrokes are now compliant with the core keys stroke @1.2.
    • Encyclopedia:
      • for the CSM Events, a correction in the logic to display the levels of effect has now been applied. All the events display their levels correctly now.
  • Interface - Settlements Panel:
    • corrections of some typos.
    • clicking on the icon of the selected infrastructure, in the infrastructure configuration / CAB setup interface, zoom and unzoom picture.
    • size constraints have been put on the panel to set minimum width and height.
    • all the keystrokes are now compliant with the core keys stroke @1.2.
  • Music & Sound System:
    • no music is played by default at the game launch (a bit annoying when you making tests). F9 needs to be hit to play.

Alpha 10 - iteration#07: Unified Patch - Assets Part Done + Release Date

I decided to unify the release of the two patches; the current one for the assets and the one for the encyclopedia.
All that because I found useless to make a second sub-release only for one XML file (the encyclopedia).
So I will keep this idea in the future when I will update a new iteration / version with a subsequent patch that will contain bug fixes, assets AND updates of the encyclopedia.

The release date of this patch will be the one of the second sub-release, so on January 22 / 2017.
It stay a fixed date, what will be done will be released.

What is done so far?
  1. Pictures have been added for the mining site, the nuclear fission reactor and the house packs
  2. It is possible now to click on the icon of the selected infrastructure to size up the picture (and it size down automatically when you click a second time or exit the picture)
  3. size constraints have been put on the Settlements panel to set minimum width and height
  4. not something big nor important, but the music doesn't play at launch automatically, you need to hit F9 to play it. I did it because first it is only one and the same track, and two, when you do multiple testings by lauching and re-relaunching the game, it becomes ... annoying.
For what left of this week, I will update the encyclopedia and the code of it to expand the display of the data about the infrastructures and provide more detailed informations.
I will also work on the rest of assets I haven't done yet for; the Pressurized Tanks Array, the Houses Pack (in restricted environment), and perhaps the Humidity Trap if I have time to make a model of it.

I will also update the XML of the infrastructures with corrected and adjusted data for some of them, because I made some design errors and some strange abstractions.

That's all and in prime a lil' teasing:


Thanks to the Blendswap community for your incredible assets :)
Of course, the credits of the game have been updated too.

Stay tuned.

3D / 2D Work For Infrastructures:5 Screenshots

Here are two of the objects/scene I work on

For the Nuclear Fission Reactor (an assembled self-contained one):

For the Mining Site:


They are the easier ones.

For the Pressurized Tanks Array I must do some work , like merging some objects from different sources.

For the Humidity Trap, I must Remake entirely the object, the one provided in the FBX is completely screwed up:
But it is OK, I will follow the entire design, that will be faster, and will upload a new version on opengameart with the due credits :)

For the Multipurpose Depot, I though I found one, but it is more a full fledged warehouse than a modest assembled infrastructure.
In this way I need to modify the data of this infrastructure, and it isn't the new one to adjust with more coherent informations.

For the Houses Pack, I found something simple for houses in Free Environment (directly liveable like on Earth):


For Restricted and Space Environments (with some mods necessary):

Of course it will expand over the time, and even affine but for now it's very satisfying.

Stay tuned.

3D / 2D Work For Infrastructures: Found it All

I found all the assets I needed to illustrate the whole 6 infrastructures in the game, for now.
I scrounged so much Blendswap that I paid a yearly sub to download all I wanted (and I'm far to have finished it).

In final I got assets for a ton of items that aren't implemented yet like; for some technosciences of the Research & Development System, for products (resources, equipments, vehicles and so on), for a lot of infrastructures and for space units (stations, spacecrafts and many many 3D parts).

And there are people that are bored with their lifetime, to each their own cup of tea :)

For the next post, I will publish some screenshots of choosen scenes / objects.

Thanks for all the great people that share their incredible work!

And stay tuned.

PS: if you are interested to see the incredible work of people, shared under open source licenses like Creative Commons, here are two links:

 http://www.blendswap.com/

http://opengameart.org/

3D / 2D Work For Infrastructures

Since yesterday I scrounge Blendswap and I even paid a fee to download tons of assets.
There are so much talented people on it, it's incredible. It's a good complement to OpenGameArt.

So now I need to fire my 3D softwares and start to making 3D stuff for FARC; first for the infrastructures in the game, and if I have time left before January 15th I will look to generate other assets.

So don't expect code commits on GitHub for the next days and week.

I will keep you informed of the work.

Alpha 10 - iteration#07: Details on the Changes (incl A LOT OF Screenshots)

So here is the post about the changes.
Most of the iteration #07 was about the overhaul of the ex-Colony Data Panel (superb name...).

Now it is how it looks:
Internally it looks about the same, but the information is a bit more concentrated.
There are also now 6 buttons that open panels for their respective parts they have to display, excepted "Colony" which switch the environment section to a Colony section as you can see below:
It's not perfect yet (I will fix the display of the Level for the next release) and I need to colorize the icons but you get the feeling.
As for the rest of the panels, many icons have their own hint to display their meaning and additional informations, it is pretty basic for now but it will expand over the time.

Geological Surveys and Resource Spots are also display in full row for better readability. The screenshot below shows an example of it in a region where a survey is in progress:
Again it is not perfect, but better than before, and this release is certainly the more "graphic" of all the release I made.

Here is the panel for the Population, it needs work yet and will have some change for the release of January 15th, but out of the Construction Workforce, that I moved into the Settlements panel, it is the same infos as before:
It seems to have too much of empty space wasted in it, but keep in mind that the population will be expanded in the future by being multiracial and multi-ethnics between Humans (with Baseline, Genemod and Poshumans ethnic groups), Clones and Artificial Intelligences (with Non-Sapient AIs, Sapient AIs and AIchitects ethnic groups).

Here is the panel for the selected Settlement, the part with most of the changes occured in this release:
The panel is divided by 3 sections, from the left to the right; the list of Present Infrastructures in the settlement, the Configuration/Conversion-Assembling-Building and Construction Workforce section, and finally the list of Available Infrastructures.

The top of the panel contains from left to right; the type of settlement, its size (in the circular jauge), its name, the information about the capacity of the settlement in regard of its actual size. The drop-down interface element is used to apply a filter to the list of Available Infrastructures.

The list of Present Infrastructure is the same than before the changes; it display the infrastructures converted/assembled/built in a particular settlement.
When one is clicked, its configuration and some informations are displayed on the central section, for example one of the Colonization Shelter has been selected:
As you can see it shows some information like its status, its level, some description text from the encyclopedia and a button to disable it, if wanted.
the big "X" is a default placeholder for an illustration of the selected infrastructure. Future works will replace these.

The lower part of the central section contain anything need to configure the Construction Workforce and works like before.
Finally the right section of the panel display the list of Available Infrastructure that can be assembled and built in the selected settlement.
This list hast many thing, but first, the drop down on top of it allow 3 kind of filtering:

"None" display the full list, regardless of requirements and without warning the player. It can be useful to see what's in the game without too much interference:
"Colored Statuses" display also the full list but it highlight incompatibilities in the requirements to be allowed to be assembled and built. The incompatibilities are displayed in red with a warning icon:
There aren't much more details, the player will have to click on each entry to see the problems.
In the future I could make warning icons specific to the type of incompatibility.

Finally the "Hide Unavailable" (damn, I just discovered a typo in the game) simply hide the infrastructures the player cannot assemble and build and so it avoid to clutter the list, that will grow over the time:

The little suitcase icons with numbers inside of it are used for kits of infrastructure and the number represent the level of infrastructure a kit can assemble.

The "x n" represent the number of kits available in the colony's storage and so the number of kits that can be assembled at the maximum.

The rounded green / orange / black icons represent the environments in which an infrastructure can be assembled/built. In the same order; Free Living, Restricted and Space environments.

So when a compatible infrastructure is clicked, the central section display the configuration to assemble or build this same infrastructure.
So here is an example:

Here is an example for a kit of infrastructure that must be assembled:

And here is an example of an incompatible infrastructure displaying a text to inform the player why such infrastructure cannot be assembled/built:

Next, the Industry panel, which is about the same as before:

And finally the Colony Simulation Model (CSM) Events panel:

The display of the modifiers, especially for the colors, has been corrected versus the previous iteration.
FYI, the button of the CSM Event display the number of events triggered for the colony:

The final part, the Biosphere, is disabled because biospheres (flora and fauna) aren't implemented in the game yet.

Well, that's all. The complete process to assemble and build an infrastructure is 100% working.
Of course the interface need work; it stay a bit clunky and doesn't show all the informations yet, particularly for the details of building materials for built infrastructures.


End of screen pimping, back to work :)

Thanks again for your interest.

Alpha 10 - iteration#07 Release

Add: I Forgot a thing; with this release it is the first time the project reach its first 100,000 lines of codes (101,650 exactly)  :)

First, I wish you a good year, and hope that in 2017 you will reach and accomplish at least a part of what you seek in your life.

If you don't want to try this release, or are lurking only for the changes and progress, you only have to wait for tomorrow; I will publish a well sized post including many screenshots that will detail how works the upgraded interface.

Tomorrow is one day off for me, so I will publish it in the morning, EST time.

Details
The alpha 10 [0.6.13.1052]it#07 is released.

FARC is bundled in two flavors: manually, with 7z archives and semi-automated with setup files.

These two ways doesn't requires that FARC is previously installed.

If it is installed and you use the setup file, please bear in mind that it will update correctly only from the alpha 10-iteration 01, not from the alpha 10 or any other alpha before.
If it isn't the case, just remove any previous version of FARC before to install this one.

If you take the manual way, please delete any previous version of FARC before.

Setup is here: FARColony-full-alpha_10it07-0.6.13.1052.exe.

Manual archive is here: FARColony-full-alpha_10it07-0.6.13.1052.7z.

There is now a music pack, which is included into the Setup version, that you can install separately if you installed FAR manually. It is here: Google Drive Link.

There is no more of cumulative patch (to much changes and deletion to make this kind of archive meaningful).


Working Dates
From 2016-04-25 to 2017-01-01

What's Missing?
Nothing considering the code.

There aren't any pictures for the infrastructures in this releases.

What's Next?
Tomorrow I will publish a big post with screenshots to show the changes.


The next version is about bug fixing and additions of assets, pictures for the ifnrastructures already in the game, and will be released on January 15/2017.
Since it's a sub-release I can safely post the release date, whatever done during these two weeks will be included.

Changes

  • 3D:
    • personalized surface maps are now too loaded according to the high resolution option.
    • the bug for the browsing of the orbital objects with the keys is fixed now. The zoom/unzoom with the mouse wheel triggered it.
    • the previous zoom/unzoom method with the middle mouse button is disabled.
  • Encyclopedia:
    • addition of a new format: Annex - Infrastructures.
    • New Entries:
      • CSM:
        • Colony Level.
      • Annex - Infrastructures:
        • Colonization Shelter.
        • Houses Pack.
        • Humidity Trap.
        • Inflatable Greenhouse
        • Inflatable Habitat
        • Mining Site
        • Multipurpose Depot
        • Nuclear Fission Reactor
        • Pressurized Tanks Array.
  • Game Saving/Loading:
    • fix: prevent a crash if there isn't any game saved available.
    • addition of 3 pictures for the resource spots; metallic ore field, rare metals ore field and uranium ore field..
  • Graphics:
    • addition of 10 icons to illustrate the colony data.
    • addition of 2048 x 1024 personalized surface maps.
    • addition of multiples icons to illustrate the lists of infrastructures (like the levels of infrastructure kits).
    • addition of 4 series of icons to illustrate the fourth environments (free, restricted, space and gaseous).
    • addition of 7 icons to illustrate the max levels of the infrastructures.
  • Infrastructures (database):
    • the isSurfaceOnly data is deprecated. The range of types of settlement is added instead.
    • Infrastructures - Addons and Modifications:
      • Multipurpose Depot: expanded to level 7 from level 5.  Levels 4 and 5 have been reworked and adjusted.
  • Infrastructures (in-game):
    • converted infrastructures keeps now their data of their custom effects into a proper array the data structure derivated from the one used for the database. It is necessary now they keep all the details about it, generated during a conversion.
    • Construction Assembling Building (CAB): 
      • the infrastructure's Construction Workforce Points (iCWP) now take into account if more than one iteration of a same infrastructure will be assembled/built. The calculations of the iCWP are modified.
    • Assembling:
      • prevent a crash when an infrastructure kit hasn't any technoscience prerequisite.
  • Interface - Events (CSM) Panel:
    • basic conversion.
    • the modifiers are coded with the correct colors according to the meaning of positive and negative values for each event.
  • Interface - General:
    • a special unit, for hints interconnect, is now created. It centralize any hint formatting for a specific element of interface and keep it updated.
    • the gradient on the glow buttons has been modified a bit to make the texts more readable.
    • the circular progress elements have been reset to their original code. My tweaked one put more crash than anything else. Their display have been optimized according to the default changes.
    • some French strings have been optimized and corrected.
    • prevent an exception when the main window is resized too often too fast.
    • forgot to add a text entry in ui.xml for the infrastatus_disabledbyee (status of infrastructure when disabled by the Energy Equilibrium rules).
  • Interface - Industry Panel:
    • basic conversion.
    • the update of the Production Matrix List is re-enabled and corrected.
  • Interface - Orbital Object Panel (formerly Colony and Surface Panels):
    • complete overhaul of the basic informations displayed in the panel. The panel itself is renamed the Orbital Object Panel.
    • Population has now its own panel.
    • Settlements has now its own panel.
    • Industry has now its own panel.
    • Events (CSM) has now its own panel.
    • colony data are now represented with their respective icon. A HTML hint is linked to each of them to provide additional informations.
    • resource spots are all now displayed in their respective area with each of their own icon.
    • in the data about the ecosphere, the type of environment is now displayed under the form of an icon.
    • fix: prevent the bug with the grid of the surface display of the Orbital Object Panel when a new game is launched or one is continued/loaded for the first time.
  • Interface - Population Panel:
    • basic conversion.   
  • Interface - Settlements Panel:
    • basic conversion.   
    • the settlement's name is now correctly displayed. The player can change it by modifying directly the displayed name.
    • the settlement's type, size and accumulated levels / levels cap are now displayed.
    • the keystrokes for each component of the panel are completed and optimized.
    • addition of a combo box that allow to filter the infrastructures of the available list. Can show no warning for infrastructures that doesn't pass the requirements, show a warning icon, or don't display them at all.
    • the Construction Workforce data and setup is now displayed beside the two lists of infrastructures. Some improvements in the interface have been made.
    • the interface to configure an infrastructure is implemented.
    • the interface to assemble of build an infrastructure is implemented.
  • Messages:
    • the behavior and keystrokes of the panel and its components are improved and fixed.
  • Misc:
    • the configuration file and the saved game files are now stored in appdata and no more in MyDocuments.
  • Missions:
    • Colonization:
      • the list of possible settlements is now real and not hardcoded. It is based on the environment and also the target's type of orbital object. The Lava Tube type is displayed regardless of the Features & Artefacts Survey, since this system isn't implemented yet.
      • the choosen type of settlement is now stored in the mission parameters.
    • Interplanetary Transit:
      • the old method of selection for the destination has been disabled for now, a better one will be dev.
  • Music & Sound System:
    • pretty crude and basic implementation of the BASS library into FARC.
    • Music Package Additions:
      • A7.mp3
  • Settlements:
    • the types of settlements are expanded to their full series, 6 in total: surface, space-based, subterranean, lava tube (new one), asteroid (new one) and space unit-based (new one).
    • expansion of the settlement's data structure by adding data for the accumulated infrastructure's levels.
    • the accumulated infrastructure's levels are now updated each time a CAB process is initialized.
    • Surface:the levels caps for each size are now implemented.
    • Space-Based Surface:
      • the levels caps for each size are now implemented.
    • Subterranean:
      • the levels caps for each size are now implemented.
    • Lava Tube:
      • the levels caps for each size are now implemented.
    • Asteroid:
      • the levels caps for each size are now implemented.
    • The region's EMO values, where a settlement is located, for the CAB and IWC are now also stored into the settlement's data structure for faster retrieving..
  • Socio-Political Matrix (SPM):
    • new memes ( total = 22 ):
      • Spirit of Entitlement.
    •  new policies ( total = 25 ):
      • Universal Cancer Cure.
  • Universe:
    • correction for the environment of Epsilon Eridani 2 into a Free Living environment, it was set Restricted one (maybe due to an old manipulation of my part). The current data have been re-checked, against the FUG, and confirmed as a Free Living.