Update 32 – Story mode, new spaceships, new playable race, new planets, new dungeons, …

Story Lines

So far, the game was all about surviving in deep space without any long-term goal or winning condition. The new Story Line changes this! Now, you can add the first new Story Line as bonus card to your game. A second one will be available in two weeks!

Each Story Line adds its own story and goals to your game. When starting the game, you will get a message with your first task. After completing a task, you will get a new one, until you completed the story. Completing a story is rewarded with a Steam Achievement and a new powerful unlocked spaceship!

The amazing thing about these Story Lines are that they are added like any other bonus card. That means, you can multiple Story Line cards to your game to create a unique campaign or you can play like you did so far by not using any of these new cards!

Two new spaceships

Two new spaceships with a unique look were added to Galactic Crew. Their sizes and abilities are comparable to the Zeus-class or Horus-class battlecruisers. You can unlock them by completing the Story Lines.

Six new rooms

This update also features six new rooms that can be used to customize your spaceship. There are two completely new rooms: Item Processor and Guest Room. Sending a crew member to interact with a Item Processor opens a crafting dialog you can use to assemble or disassemble items. Guest rooms can be used to transport tourists from one space station to another. You’ll find new tourism missions at all space stations.

There are also four upgraded versions of existing rooms: Shield Generator II, Drone Booster II, Storage Room II and Engine II. They are like their Tier 1 counterparts, but more powerful and more expensive.

Four new planets & sixty new dungeons

Four new planetary missions were added including weapon smuggler outposts, a scrapyard and and an archaelogical field lab. I don’t want to tell you more about them, because I don’t want to spoil any content of the Story Line! You can also explore these planets without the Story Line in new space events!

There are also sixty new handcrafted dungeons waiting for your exploration. These new dungeons also feature many new rooms, new NPCs, new quests and new dungeon styles!

New playable race

You can now play with two new android characters!

Multi selection

Now, you can select and command multiple crew members. Press Strg key when selecting a crew member by clicking on its UI item or by clicking on its model to add this character to the selection.

But wait, there is more…

The goods Firearms and Ammo have been replaced by High-Tech Components and Scrap. All quests and events related to the old goods have been updated and your cargo hold will be converted automatically when continuing your game. The biggest change is that looting a weapon crate now has a 30% chance of looting an equippable firearm and a 10% chance of looting a body armor!

There are also five new items related to the new Story Line, new Steam Achievements you can get after completing the Story Lines.

The bonus cards in the Game Creation view are now color-coded and sorted by type. This makes it easier to find a certain type of card.

Coming up next…

In two weeks, another Story Line will be added to Galactic Crew that can be combined with the first one or used solely.

After that, I will work on visual improvements like shadows, better laser effects, etc. This updated is planned for late June / early July.

Update 31 – Man your space ship’s terminals and equip better items!

Crew equipment

So far, every soldier had a rifle and all other crew members had a pistol to fight their enemies. Now, you can equip firearms, body armors and jewelry to each of your crew members.

You can loot firearms from any hostile humanoid enemy like space pirates or raiders on planets and in dungeons. There is a certain chance that they drop their pistol or rifle. Normal crew members are no longer limited to equip pistols. After looting a rifle, any crew member can use it!

Body armors can be bought at any merchant, if you are lucky. Jewelry items can be looted from defeated enemies. Jewely can improve a character’s damage, experience gain, maximum hit points, speed and more.

In order to manage your crew’s equipment, open the Crew menu. You’ll see your crew member’s inventory below their skills. You can change the equipment at any time.

Man space ship terminals

Another new feature is manning space ship terminals. Select a crew member and click on one of the following objects in your spaceships to man this terminal. Your mouse cursor will indicate the object you can man with a different cursor and the object will be highlighted.

Pilot terminal

Click on the pilot’s seat to send your crew member to man the pilot terminal. While this terminal is manned, the hyperdrive charges 10% faster during combat. It charges 25% faster, if it’s manned by a pilot.

Weapon terminal

You can find this terminal next to the pilot’s terminal in the cockpit of your ship. Man it to increase your spaceship’s weapon turret damage by 10%. The damage bonus is 25%, if the terminal is manned by a soldier.

Drone booster

Man its terminal to increase drone weapon damage by 10%. The bonus damage is increased to 25% when manned by an engineer.

Shield generator

When manned, the shields are regenerating. The regeneration rate is increased when manned by an engineer.

AI improvements

When fighting against civilian ships, you will see that the enemy crew will also man the stations of their ships to increase their combat abilities!

Game balancing

The generic 25% damage boost for ship weapons when fired by a soldier has been removed and replaced with the damage boost of weapon terminals (see above).

When killing enemy soldiers, beasts or monsters all your crew members gain experience.

Bug Fixes

  • Some doors in dungeons were placed with a displacement.
  • In two dungeons, a wall segment had no end.
  • There were resource in dungeons that could not be gathered.
  • The game could crash when teleporting into dungeons while the mouse was moved outside the game window.
  • After losing a game, the skill texts in the last dialog (the one were you can select which captain you want to save) were wrong.
  • A lighting issue with enemies like bears, giant spiders and wolves has been solved.

Coming up next: Story Mode!

The next update will come between mid and end of May and bring the Story Mode to Galactic Crew. I post frequent news on Twitter. You might want to check Twitter out to see daily news about the progress.

The overall goal of the game so far is survival. The Story Mode will bring new Story Cards to the game creation menu to add an overall goal to the game. This means there will be a condition to win the game!

What else will be included in the update?

  • Two new spaceships that can be unlocked by getting new achievements
  • New rooms, including upgraded versions of existing rooms
  • New playable race: Androids.
  • New tutorial
  • New planets
  • New dungeons

Update 30 brings over 40 new dungeons, new enemies, new planet and much more

New dungeons

In the last two updates I focused on adding new planets and generic game improvements like object highlighting, interactions with objects, looting, etc. This update brings 40 new dungeons to Galactic Crew, including a completely new type of dungeon: temples. Over a dozen new rooms and props further increase the variety of underground facilities.

New planet, new beasts, new item and new quests

A new planetary mission was added that grants access to certain dungeons. I don’t want to spoil where to find the dungeons or how the new planet looks like. I am sure you will find it! [SMILEY] The new planet features new beasts like bears. Giant spiders can be found in some of the new dungeons guarding ancient relics!

The new enemies also bring new types of loot with them and new space quests will give you access to the newly added planet and dungeons.

Coming up next…

The next update will bring improvements for your crew! You will be able to equip different firearms, equip combat vests to boost your crew members’ defense and you can equip jewelry to boost their stats! Crew members will also be able to interact with your space ship’s equipment to boost your ship’s abilities!

Update 29 – New planets, new quests and object highlighting

Six new planets, new quests and new enemies

While working on the Story Mode, I am also adding a lot of content that is used for normal continuous games. This week’s update features six new planets and new space quests for every new planet. Some of the quests features medieval villages and some of them feature ancient temples. While the existing ancient temple had a lot of energy crystals to offer, the new ancient temple is different – very different. While exploring the new worlds, you might encounter wolves as a new type of enemy.

 

Object highlighting

Object highlighting helps you to aim your ship’s weapon turrets, assign jobs to your crew members, discover objects you can gather or interact with and more.

 

Improvements

There are three space stations in each galaxy. Each space station has a different specialization (agriculture, industry, generic) that affects the prices and the available goods. An extended tool-tip shows the specialization for each space station on the Galaxy Map.

Special abilities of weapons (like the shield penetration of beam lasers) are now part of a weapon’s tool-tip.

Update 28 – Dinosaurs, lootable enemies, object highlighting, new planetary mission, …

Dinosaurs, new planet and a new skill

So far, you had to fight enemy ships, space pirates, raiders and zombies on your journey through outer space. With today’s update, dinosaurs are added as a new encounter! You can encounter dinosaurs like the fast Raptors or mighty T-Rex in a new planetary mission. On your way through the galaxy, you might get events that take place on planets. This update adds an alternative planet for the same event. So, when you teleport down to the planet’s surface, you might face the new threat!

A new passive solder skill enhances the damage versus beasts. You might want to spend a few points in it before hunting T-Rex!

More planets and dungeons with more features will be added with the upcoming content updates!

Looting and new items

After defeating an enemy ship or after completing missions, you are rewarded with credits, goods and items. Starting today, you can loot killed enemies! You might kill space pirates on board of their own ships or dinosaurs on planets and loot their corpses. The loot depends on the enemy you killed. Four new items have been added to the game that can be looted and sold to any merchant.

Improvements

After losing a game, you can select whether you want to overwrite your saved captain with your current one. This comes in handy, when you play with the same captain in several games at the same time.

After jumping into a new sector, dead crew members will be removed from your ship.

The help dialog lists the mouse / keyboard shortcut for letting crew members run.

Bug Fixes

  • It is no longer possible to select dead crew members.
  • Solved an issue with animations when NPCs started to run towards a player character.
  • The crew wasn’t properly saved, when wuitting the game while crew members were on board of the enemy’s ship.

Update 27 – Co-op multiplayer, multiple save games and new languages!

The co-op multiplayer patch is finally here! I spent the last week with numerous test games to remove the last issues and to make sure everything is stable. However, please be aware that multiplayer games are very complex and you might run into a situation where the game does not behave as expected. Please report any problems by starting a discussion in Steam’s Community Hub or by writing an e-mail to support@galactic-crew.net. I highly prefer e-mails because the e-mail client is always opened and I can react faster to new messages.

Multiplayer

The major feature of this update is the new co-op multiplayer mode. You can either use TCP/IP for playing in a LAN network or when using networking tools like Hamachi or you use Steam’s communication layer. I recommend to use Steam’s communication, if you and your friends have a Steam copy of the game.

Starting a multiplayer game works in the same way as starting a continous singleplayer game. Click on “New Game” in the main menu and configure your game. You will notice new buttons in the bottom right corner. After you configured the game, you can decide to start a singleplayer game or to start a multiplayer game over TCP/IP or Steam. If you start your game using TCP/IP, tell your friends your public IP address and port number. They can join your game by clicking the proper button in the main menu. If you start a game using Steam, press Shift+Tab to open the Steam overlay. Now, you can invite your friends to the opened game. It may take a moment for them to connect to your lobby.

Now, you can select the rights and characters for each player. Each player must have at least one assigned character. The player rights state what each player can do. For example, you can decide which player is allowed to trade or recruit new crew members.

The multiplayer games itself work like normal singleplayer games, but with good friends. I highly recommend to use a tool like Teamspeak, Discord or Skype for communication while playing the game.

 

Multiple save games

Another new feature are multiple save game slots. Instead of having a single savegame slot, you now have ten! That means you can start a new game without overwriting your previous one. This perfect for testing new bonus cards or game mechanics or to organize your multiplayer games.

 

 

New languages supported

In addition to the existing language supports, Galactic Crew now supports Arabic, Thai, Korean and Chinese. Please note, that I can only provide player support in English or German.

 

User interface

Each crew member in your crew overview had a red health bar and a green action bar. The action was a relic of an early concept, that was discarded. The bar was replaced with a yellow experience bar. Now, the bar shows the progress to the next level-up.

An icon bar has been added to each ship’s status bar. It shows the condition for each piece of equipment on your ship. You can also click on them with an attack cursor or repair cursor to attack or repair them!

The threat level display in the top center of the screen got a tool-tip showing the progress for the next threat level.

 

Improvements

When mining asteroids, the amount of experience you get depends on the quantity of resources you mine. So far, you got experience for using mining laser turrets, but not for using mining drones. This has been changed. You can use the passive skills of an engineer for a higher chance of additional resources that result in additional experience.

Instead of using a fixed screen refresh rate, the game now uses the highest screen refresh rate that is supported by your screen and your graphics cards with your current screen resolution.

 

Bug Fixes

  • Removed spelling mistakes in German translation
  • The game could freeze during the start-up when using a certain anti-virus software
  • The game could crash when changing the streamed music, e.g. after jumping to a new system
  • Solved a compatibility issue with older sound cards
  • Small memory leaks in two user interface controls were removed
  • The drone booster equipment was indestructible
  • If you bought items from a spacestation or shipyard, they weren’t listed in the rewards list.
  • Using the field manual or life-enhancing drugs on planets and in dungeons did not work
  • The Scan Systems ability of the pilot could be used several times in the same system
  • When a medic tried to resurrect a living crew member, the medical supply was still used.
  • The source selection has been moved in the main menu, because it wasn’t possible to select all options from the previous location.
  • The mouse cursor was not reseted after resurrecting a dead crew member on planets or in dungeons.
  • After loading a saved Explorer game or after solving a mission as Explorer, tool-tips revealed secret information on the Galaxy Map.
  • The empty space between sections in the main menu’s Credit section was too large.
  • After teleporting in one particular dungeon, the crew members were attacked by a pirate while loading the dungeon.

Multiplayer Dev Diary, Part V

I started developing the co-op multiplayer game mode five weeks ago by creating the first user interface view. Now, I am almost done!

Multiplayer

This week, I focused on three major tasks. The first task was to make more features ready for multiplayer like trading with spaceships, accepting missions from random encounters, completing mining and delivery missions, adjusting encounters for specific quests, zombie encounters, the AI system, attacking enemy ships’ equipment and crew members with your own crew, etc.

The second task was to add Steam’s communication layer for multiplayer. When you create a multiplayer game or when you continue a saved multiplayer game, you can decide whether you want to use TCP/IP or Steam as communication layer. Using TCP/IP is perfect for LAN games or when you use tools like Hamachi to play with your friends or when you want to play with friends who don’t have the Steam version of Galactic Crew. If you and all of your friends have the Steam version, you can use the Steam communication layer to play over the Internet without using any extra tool like Hamachi.

The third task was testing. The space-related tasks are almost completed and I did some longer games against some of you. It has been a pleasure to play with you! There are some issues I need to solve, but there’s nothing I couldn’t solve soon!

I will work on dungeons and planets today and next week. After that, I will test every single feature in singleplayer and multiplayer mode to make sure everything is stable. If there are no unknown problems, the co-op multiplayer update will come in two weeks on 24th February.

If you want to beta-test the multiplayer mode with me, feel free to write me an e-mail at support@galactic-crew.net

Story mode

While working on the multiplayer mode of the game, several designers are working on assets for the upcoming story mode. Below, you find an image for temple ruins and two teaser images of the new spaceships that will be introduced with the story mode.

Multiplayer Dev Diary, Part IV

It has been a very successful week and most of the work for co-op multiplayer is already done.

Multiplayer

Last week, I put my focus on the user interface related features. This week, I did only some minor adjustments to the user interface. Most of the work time was spent on the communication layer between game’s host and the other players. Here are some of the features I made ready for co-op multiplayer:

  • When starting the game, all crew members are at the same location for all players and when a player assigns a command to a crew member, it is executed synchronously for all players.
  • All crew member skills are now fully functional in multiplayer games! This includes attacking other ships, repairing, healing, resurrecting, navigation and scanning systems.
  • Space combat is now possible in multiplayer games. This includes attacks from the enemy ship, attacking the enemy with turrets and combat/shield drone AI.
  • Asteroid mining, including mining drones
  • Travelling through the galaxy, e.g. jumping to new sectors, getting space events, voting for them, etc.
  • Reward system after completing missions, space events, combats, etc.

As you can see, the development progress is pretty good. Starting today, I will work on the remaining tasks like enemy agents (zombies, space pirates, raiders, etc.), planets and dungeons. I will also do multiple test games next weeks to test everything I have done so far. I think I can complete the co-op multiplayer mode in 2-3 weeks. My early estimation (see my last content update in December) was to complete it until mid February and it turns out, my estimation was pretty accurate.

If you want to make a test game with me before I release the co-op mode, feel free to contact me on Steam!

Other features

I have to adjust or check all major features of Galactic Crew to make sure, the game works smooth in singleplayer and multiplayer games. While checking the code, I found a couple of small bugs that I immediately fixed.

Story mode

In the current poll, you can vote if you want to have a story mode or not. As it turns out almost everyone wants to have one. After finishing the multiplayer mode in 2-3 weeks, I will start working on the story mode. It will be a small campaign with different endings and built-in optional tutorial. New players can jump right into the story mode without having played the game before and veterans can disable the tutorial and enjoy the story. The story mode will also reward you with new achievements, new ships, etc. that you can use in normal continous games. Several 3D artists are working on it since end of December and I will give you more information soon!

Multiplayer Dev Diary, Part III

I am completing the third week working on the co-op multiplayer for Galactic Crew and I made some great progress.

Multiplayer

User interface
Most features of Galactic Crew are identical in singleplayer and multiplayer games. However, some features work in a different way like events in space. When you are playing a multiplayer game with friends, each of you can vote for the event option he/she wants to select. Each vote is marked with a colored ribbon so that everyone can see the votes. After all players selected an option, one of the selected options is randomly chosen.

Example: If two players vote for Option A and one player votes for Option B, there is a 2/3 chance that Option A is chosen and a 1/3 chance that Option B is chosen.

Communication
This week’s main work was enabling features in co-op multiplayer. Here is a list of some things I enabled in multiplayer: trading goods and items, retrofitting your ship’s room, replacing weapon turrets, selecting drone types, renaming characters, promoting characters, skilling your crew members, using useable items, …

Today, I will spent most of the day making the communication layer more stable. Events like a leaving game host must be handled and I want to make sure that opening, closing and updating user interface controls remotely doesn’t cause any trouble.

Other features
I spent most of the development time with the multiplayer mode, but I found some bugs that needed to be fixed. I will include a full list of bug fixes in the content update’s patch notes.

What’s next
I plan to spend the next week entirely on the communication layer. I want to synchonize all characters so that the position and action for all characters is identical for all players. After this is done, I want to start synchonizing the tool bar actions and travelling.

Multiplayer Dev Diary, Part II

Dear players,

It is the second week of the multiplayer development phase and I want to inform you about my current progress.

Multiplayer

Communication
Last week, I created a new view that is used to configure a multiplayer game. I used the first working days to put life into this view. Now, when a client connects to a game host, both see the same view and when one of the players makes any change (like assigning crew members) all players see these changes immediately. I also put additional validations in this view to make sure everything is okay, when the host starts the game.

The second task of this week was to share game information with all players. When the host creates a new game or loads a savegame, the clients do not know anything about it. Therefore, when the game host clicks on the start button, all clients download the current game state.

User interface
I also continued to work on the user interface. This week, I put some time into the crew panel on the left side of the screen. As you can see in the image below, the names of the crew members are color-coded so you know which crew members belongs to which player. When playing a singleplayer game, the color-coding is not used.

Other features

I also worked on other features that are used in any game (multiplayer and singleplayer). Most of them were requested by players. Please feel free to send me an e-mail if you think something’s missing in the game!

Experience bars
So far, all characters had a green action bar. This is relict from the earliest version of the game. Since the action bar was never used, I replaced it with an experience bar. Now, you can clearly see the levelling process of all your crew members as you can see in the image below.

Status icons
In one of the first updates of the game, I added status icons to each piece of equipment to make it easier to see which objects are damaged or disabled on your ship. Now, I also added a summary of all pieces of equipment in the ships’ status panels. As you can see below in the upper corners, a new status bar shows you the status of all pieces of equipment. These status bars can also be used to repair or attack items. When you use a repair skill of an engineer or one of your crew members, you can click on one of the symbols in this bar and the crew member starts to run to the proper piece of equipment and repairs it! You can also use your attack skills on the enemy ship’s status bar to attack an item.

More tool-tips
I also added more tool-tips to show you additional information like how much threat you need to advance to the next threat level.

More languages
Galactic Crew already supports several languages, but starting with the multiplayer update in February, more languages will be added. This week, I hired new translators to translate the game into Chinese, Arabic, Thai and Korean!

Hotfix

You may have noticed that the game updated itself yesterday and last week. When I get a bug report with a game crash, I immediately fix it. As soon as I get the confirmation from the player that a fix works, I put it on Steam to make it available to everyone. When your game runs fine, these updates won’t affect you.

What’s next
I had to spend some time on fixing an audio-related bug. Therefore, I wasn’t able to add the voting system to the quest dialog. So, my goal for today and the upcoming working week is to adjust the quest dialog window and to make a lot of small adjustments. For example, a player must only be able to select his own crew members.

Another major topic is the synchronization of all actions. When a player assigns a task to a crew member, the position, animation and action must be synchronized with all players. I need to adjust the communication and game layers. If everything’s going well, I should be able to do it next week.

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