New spaceships, missions, Steam Achievements and more!

This week’s update brings you new playable spaceships, missions and new achievements.

New spaceships

The ‘Var’ and ‘Hiaka’ class spaceship are now available as playable ships. They are comparable with the ‘Artemis’ and ‘Demeter’ class, but they have more pieces of equipment and less small rooms. These ships are perfect if you need more pieces of equipment on your vessel!

You can unlock these spaceships with new achievements. To unlock the ‘Var’ you need to select where you learned about Galactic Crew in the main menu. As soon as you have reached the third tier of “The clock is ticking…” you will see an option in the main menu where you can vote once where you learned about Galactic Crew. After doing your selection, you get the ship!

Missions

Whenever you enter a new solar system, a random event happens. In addition to these local events, you can now request missions from space stations. Click on the ‘Services’ button to request a mining, delivery or bounty hunter mission. When you have a mission in a specific sector and you enter this sector, you won’t get an event, but you can complete your mission. All missions are shown on the Galactic Map including tool-tips.

So far, there are three types of missions you can request from space stations. Future content updates will bring more missions to the game! Please note, you can also request missions at space stations. They are not available at shipyards!

There is also a new achievement that increases the rewards for missions. This achievement is a requirement to unlock the ‘Hiaka’ class spaceship.

Steam Achievements

I added a new feature from Steam to Galactic Crew: Steam Achievements. Now, many of your in-game achievements are also available as Steam Achievements. When you start the game the next time, your Steam Achievements will be updated based on your achieved in-game achievements.

New poll

The poll mechanism was successfully tested! A player asked, if Galactic Crew will get a campaign or story mode. It’s up to you to make a decision! Do you want one?

Improvements

In addition to your save games, your achievements are also stored in the Steam Cloud.

Coming up next…

Drones

  • New small room: Drone Bay.
  • New piece of equipment: Drone Booster.
  • Combat, mining and shield drones

New Prison room, Steam Cloud support, UI improvements and polls

This week’s update brings you prisons, polls, Steam Cloud support and some bug fixes.

Prisons

You were able to replace small rooms like crew quarters or pieces of equipment with other rooms or pieces of equipment at any space station or shipyard. With this update, there is a new large room available: the prison. You can replace any storage room on any ship with a prison or replace a prison with a storage room.

After defeating a pirate ship in space combat, a dialog will pop-up where you can choose how many pirates you want to put in your prison. This dialog only shows up, if you have room for more prisoners. If you don’t have a prison or if all your prisons are full, the dialog won’t appear.

When you are in a sector with a space station you will see a new button “Services”. Click on it to see the new window where you can sell your prisoners. You can either sell all your prisoners for 1,000 Credits per prisoners or you can trade five of them to reduce your threat level by 1! These services are not available at shipyards!

A prison of size 2×2 (like the storage room on the Artemis) has capacity for three prisoners, while larger rooms of size 2×3 and 3×2 can have up to five prisoners.

Polls

When you start Galactic Crew the next time, you will see a small poll below the news in the main menu. This week’s poll is only a test poll to test this new feature. In the future, there will be polls on a regular basis where you can vote for new features or improvements. For example, there might be a poll where you can choose what kind of multiplayer you would like to have first. The result of these polls will influence the further development of Galactic Crew, because all players can directly vote for the features they want.

Please note, there will be only polls in the game, i.e. only the actual players can vote for new content. I want to use this Early Access campaign to work together with you to create an awesome game and I think the polls are great way for doing so. For each poll, you can only vote once! After you vote, the poll disappears.

Support for Steam Cloud

Starting this week, Galactic Crew supports the Steam Cloud to save your save games. The game will save your progress in the Steam Cloud and restores it, when it’s necessary.

UI Improvements

If your ship produces more food than your crew consumes, the tool-tip in the event dialog and resource panel said something like “you consume -1 food”. The tool-tips have been adjusted with better texts.

When trading with a merchant or space station, you can now compare the stats of your equipped weapons with the weapons you want to buy.

Bug Fixes

  • The game could crash, when the ship was retrofitted while the crew repaired pieces of equipment.
  • After retrofitting a ship, crew members sometimes stood inside objects. It didn’t affect the gameplay, but it looked strange.
  • The tutorial could get stuck, when you need to heal the wounded crew member.
  • Using a Fake ID removed the Nemesis location marker on the map even if there were multiple Nemesis ships in this system.

Coming up next…

  • Two new playabale ships, incl. a starter ship with a teleporter
  • Missions. You can request missions at any space stations. Unlike events, these mission will persist during your journy through the space until you complete or abort them.
  • Three new in-game achievements
  • Steam Achievements

The latest update adds tactical pause, useable items, support for 4k resolution and more!

Tactical Pause

Several players requested to change the strategic pause to a tactical one. Now, you can assign commands to your crew members while the game is paused. Set attacks to the enemy ship’s equipment, send your crew to repair your ship or heal their colleagues or just pause the game to get a new cup of coffee while you think about your glorious victory.

New useable items

So far, the game had two kind of items: spaceship equipment like weapon turrets or mining lasers and merchandise you could trade. With the latest update, a new category of items is introduced to Galactic Crew: useable items. Right-click on an item in your inventory to use. The item will immediately be removed from your inventory and you get something in return.

Fake ID

Using the Fake ID, you can lower your threat by 1. When the threat is decreased, one of the Nemesis-class ships is removed from play and your current progress to the next threat level is reset to 0. This epic item can be found after destroying pirate encounters.

Loot Box

When using this item, you get one random epic item as reward. This can be anything from a Fake ID (see above) to an epic Heavy Particle Laser Turret. This item can be found after defeating any encounter. However, this is the most rare item in the game!

Support for 4k resolution

The user interface had a static size that resulted in a really small UI on screens with a 4k resolution. I spent several days improving the entire UI Engine resulting in a full 4k screen resolution support. When the game is started and you have at least one screen with a 4k resolution, the UI is automatically upscaled.

Balancing

I worked on the encounters this week to improve the gaming experience. One of the major changes was the way encounters are generated. So far, the difficulty of the encounters depended on the threat level. Playing with a higher threat level resulted in better rewards and more difficult encounters. However, this mechanism did not take into account what ship you were using. Now, the encounters solely depend on your current ship and your current equipment. This will make a game with a big ship more entertaining. Please note, the amount of rewards still depend on the threat level.

The second change affects the Nemesis-class ships. They were originally designed to be your final death. However, players were able to defeat them resulting in an endless fight against them until they were finally defeated. I changed the concept. Now, the strength of the Nemesis encounters depends on the threat level. While on threat level 1 these encounters can be defeated with a well-equipped ship, it is way harder when you are on a higher threat level. In addition, defeating a Nemesis-class ship reduces your threat by one.

New achievement

The new achievement ‘Luck’ has been added to the game. It will be hard to get it. But once you have it, you can increase your loot chances for Loot Boxes and weapon turrets dramatically!

Improvements

Now, you can resurrect dead crew members with your medic by clicking on their crew status in the UI.

Coming up next…

  • New room: Prison
  • Capture defeated pirate intruders and sell them at space stations

Shipyards, new weapon turrets, item rarity, brightness settings, …

Galactic Crew is available as Early Access game for one week now and I am happy to welcome the first hundreds of players! Below, you will find a detailed overview over all new features and bug fixes. You may have noticed that the game updated several times this week. I fixed all reported bugs as soon as possible and published the fixes immediately on Steam.

Shipyard

So far, you could retrofit your ship at space stations and trade your goods with them. In addition to the existing space stations, a shipyard will be visible on your map as soon as you start a new game. Shipyards work like space stations, but with two major differences: you can buy all types of weapons and you can upgrade your ship!

While merchants and space stations have a semi-random set of items for sale, shipyards always sell two weapons of all weapon types. So, when you fly to a shipyard you can be sure to buy any weapon turrets available in this game!

When starting a new game, you can select a ship you want to fly. It may take some time to unlock the bigger ships like the Zeus. In the meantime, you can upgrade your ship to a bigger ship class, if you have enough credits.

New weapon turrets

With this update, the number of different weapon turrets has been doubled. The new weapon turrets are: Light Particle Laser, Medium Particle Laser, Heavy Particle Laser and Heavy Sniper Laser.

The Heavy Sniper Laser turret way does more damage than the Heavy Laser Turret, but has a longer cool-down time. The Particle Laser weapons are similar to the normal weapons, but they have the ability to penetrate shields! That means it does not matter how many shield generators your opponent has – your Particle Lasers damage their hull and equipment directly!

Item rarity

When destroying an enemy ship, there is a certain chance to loot one or more of their weapon turrets. Now, there is chance that these looted weapons have an uncommon, rare or even epic rarity. Such weapons deal the same amount of damage as their common counterparts. However, there cool-down time is up to 25% lower resulting in a great DPS (damage per second) boost!

Brightness

Some players wanted to have an option to change the game’s brightness, because it was too dark for them. I added a new option in the game settings to change the brightness. The image below shows the same ship with different brightness settings. Please note, this option is not available in the main menu settings.

Balancing

  • The chance to loot an enemy’s weapon turrets has been increased.

Bug Fixes

  • The game could crash, when you commit the highscore dialog after a lost space battle while the weapon turrets were reloading.
  • Crew members could disappear after fighting against an enemy merchant or mining vessel.
  • After teleporting your crew back from an enemy ship, the enemy crew was sometimes able to shoot from their ship to the player’s ship.
  • While running towards an enemy soldier, crew member’s pistoles were floating in the air.
  • After teleporting your crew on a planet, the damage symbols of your weapon turrets were still visible.
  • After returning back to your ship from a planetary mission, crew members sometimes got invisible and unable to execute your orders.
  • The game could crash while teleporting your crew on a planet or while doing a time-consuming action like searching for valuables in a debris field.
  • In two events the player encounters damaged spaceships. When you attacked the ships, they weren’t damaged.
  • After losing a game, it was sometimes not possible to create a new one.
  • The game could crash after getting a crew member or after killing one.
  • The camera could get stuck on the planetary mission with the medieval village.
  • The resource panel was not able to display numbers with three digits in a proper way.
  • Dead pirates were not removed from the player’s ship after the end of a space combat.
  • Items that were received as an event reward were not displayed in the reward view.

Update 0.9.0.13

Galactic Crew will be released this Friday as Early Access. Therefore, I spent the last days with testing and optimizing the game. See below for a full change log.

Engine optimizations

The game’s shader models were improved so that less data needs to be transferred to the GPU. While the graphics quality does not change, the performance will increase on older computers.

More loot

Some quests reward you with more loot than before. For example, when you search for valuables in a debris field, you might be lucky to find way more stuff than before.

Improved user interface

I added more information to the user interface. For example, the tool-tips in the achievement view show the progress for each unlocked achievement. So you can see how many enemies you need to kill or how many items you need to gather for an achievement. Tool-tips were also added to the Galactic Map to describe asteroid fields and space stations.

Sometimes you have the opportunity to perform a time-consuming action in an event, like helping someone, looking for valuables, etc. Now, a tool-tips shows the amount of resources that are used during this action. People who did not play the tutorial had problems understanding how the retrofitting works. A new description text in the ship overview explains how to do it. This text is only visible, when you are in a system with a space station.

A new display shows your current supply of food and energy crystals. The display also features tool-tips that show how many jumps you have left before you run out of these resources. When you are running out of resources, the display’s colors changes to warn you.

When creating a new game, some cards may be locked. A new description in the tool-tips list the achievements you need to get to unlock a card. In addition, all ship cards got new tool-tips listing their properties like weapon slots or number of rooms.

Splash Screen and icon

When the application is started, you’ll see a new Splash Screen indicating that the game is currently loading. This new view replaces the old, empty window that were visible during the game’s start-up.

The game’s icon wasn’t correctly displayed in the game’s window and in the Windows task bar. This has been fixed.

Bug Fixes

  • The game could crash on Windows 7 SP 1 computers. This has been fixed.
  • There was a spelling mistake in a German event description.

Update 0.9.0.12 brings new events and improves balancing and stability

This week’s update brings new quests and several bug fixes to improve the game’s stability and the game’s balancing.

New events

Four new events were added to the game including a new planetary mission: A ship crashed on a moon nearby. Are there any survivors? Is there anything to loot? Figure it out!

Balancing

So far, the space pirates generated their threat too fast resulting in an early arrival of the NEMESIS ships. The reason for this issue was a bug that has been fixed. A full list of all fixed bugs can be found below.

 

Bug Fixes

  • The space pirate could generate threat by trading with a space station.
  • After replacing a weapon turret with a mining laser, the mining laser’s beam color was not properly changed to purple.
  • After destroying a civilian ship with the space pirate role, too much threat was generated.
  • The game could crash while streaming music tracks.
  • Crew members do not walk to another place on the ship anymore, when you right-click on any of the game’s windows.
  • Crew member’s skills are no longer executed, when you click on any of the game’s windows.
  • The game could crash when returning to main menu immediately after defeating an opponent or after you traded with a space station.
  • The screen is no longer shaking when you replace a shield generator with another piece of equipment when retrofitting your ship.
  • Fixed issues with ending music streams.

New update with brand new content!

The latest update of Galactic contains the following changes.

Character role and background got more important

So far, the role and background you selected in the game creation view set the way you generate threat. In order to make the roles more unique each role influences your start position in the galaxy and your equipment. For example, the space pirates starts with a medium laser turret which make him more powerful than the merchant and battles are faster. However, the merchant starts with several thousands credits and at a space station! Your starting gear also depends on your character’s background. While the engineer starts with a mining laser turret and some junk in the cargo hold, the pilot starts with additional energy crystals giving you a longer range.

All bonuses are shown as tool-tips in the game creation view. This way, you can easily decide what role and background fits best to your play style.

Character voices

All characters got individual voices. Whenever you select a character or assign any command to them, they will acknowledge it! In addition, a narrator will inform you about important things like destroyed pieces of equipment.

Damage indicators

Any damage dealt to your spaceship will be visualized by warning signs above damaged pieces of equipment. This way, you can easily spot damaged or even disabled objects.

Further improvements

Every time you enter a solar system a new event is started. So far, it could happen that the same event is triggered multiple times in a row. This won’t happen again. Now, the last three events are unique.

Rewards are displayed longer so you can see more clearly what you achieved.

When dragging the camera, the navigation is now inverted.

Bug Fixes

  • When dragging the camera during a space battle it could happen that the camera angle changed.
  • Removed a glitch that enabled players to fire weapon turrets while the game is paused.
  • It is no longer possible to travel to another system while the game is paused.

In-game tutorial

I just published the latest update of Galactic Crew on Steam.┬áSo far, there was a 9 minute video teaching the basics of Galactic Crew. With Patch 0.9.0.9 I replaced the video tutorial with an in-game tutorial. This tutorial will guide you step-by-step through the most basic game mechanics. You can still find the video tutorial in the game’s folder, if you want to watch it!

The Steam page is online!

A lot of things happened this week. The most important one was the publish of the Steam page. The Steam page also contains the brand new trailer made by Jacob!

The closed alpha test phase will come to an end next week and many things have been improved or have been fixed in the past weeks. I am very happy for all feedback e-mails I got from the testers and I am really looking forward to the Early Access release at the end of the month!

I am still working extremely hard on improving the game. There are still some bugs to fix and I want to complete some improvements I am currently working on. Then, I will create an in-game tutorial and I will make the game more engaging. For example, all agents will get voices, there will be more visual effects, etc.

Tutorial video, context help, bug fixes, …

I hired a video producer to create a new trailer for my game. The shop site and game build have been approved by Valve for the release on Steam. However, I want to have a new trailer first, before I make the shop site public.

I also produced a tutorial video demonstrating all current features and explaining all gameplay mechanics. This video is included in the latest patch which was made public a few minutes ago.

In order to help users understand the user interface, I added a new context help. By pressing F9 catchy tool-tips pop up showing additional information for all UI elements as shown in an example screenshot below.

In addition, I fixed several bugs and made some optimizations and improvements to further increase the game build’s quality.

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