Hey, folks! We're throwing a curveball at you - a development progress update!
"What? You mean to say that you're actually getting tangible work done?" Yes! Yes we are! It's a Christmas miracle!
We've posted this update on our Kickstarter as well, though there's a couple other things we're going to get into here as well, mainly with future plans and such. But enough babble, let's get into what you came here for - to see our progress. Now I know, it doesn't look like much, but do keep in mind that this is all just basic functionality.
First up - blocks. Blocks, blocks, and more blocks. What blocks are available? Let's take a look at each of them.
First up, let's show a total mess of various blocks that was shown on the Kickstarter (and on the homepage image) to give a brief overview.
Now, this gives a good idea of what blocks are in the game, but this doesn't make it entirely clear what these blocks are, does it? Let's remedy that.
For those interested, each and every block (as of the time of making this post) can be found in the spoiler below. We plan to setup a wiki for all of Galactiminer's content, sort of like the Minecraft Wiki - except official and not broken as of recently for unknown reasons. (also the images below will probably look like crap because I was lazy and gyazo'd all of them)
Stone Brick - A favorite of @Atomicbeast101
Diamond Block - Temporary textures borrowed from Minecraft
Grass Block - It's a block, and it's grassy. What more could you want?
Water Block - No fluid physics or anything yet, but we hope to have fully dynamic fluid to the point that it's not stored in regular blocks. But we'll see.
https://i.gyazo.com/7dc78c138ec130f1c45d96ac24155116.mp4 (video to show animation, lag at first is because UE4 limits framerate when you're not focused on it)
Chrome Block - Ooh, shiny!
Iron Block - Did you know that iron is in your blood? Not this much, but still.
Gold Block - One of these can feed an entire family for a year. Probably.
Stone Block - It's that stuff that's in the ground. No, wait - it is the ground.
Cobblestone - It's a bunch of rocks. I know what you're thinking - that texture blending is terrible. No, it's actually one of the few that blend perfectly when placed next to other cobblestone blocks.
Copper Block - It's a block full of copper. Think of all the pennies you can make!
Dirt Block - When there isn't grass, there's dirt.
Table - Because everyone needs a place to set their mug of coffee on, right @wolfbitez?
Inventory Debug Test - This is a generic block using the unknown block texture that was used when we were testing our new inventory system. If there are ever missing textures, or if there's an invalid block (or a block with no material data assigned to it), it will look like this. This test block will likely be removed before release.
debug block 2 - This couldn't be bothered to be capitalized ingame and it was used to ensure inventory was working with various block types, and not just one. Will likely also be removed before release.
Next up, the inventory. This was a real fight. See, we decided to (kind of) get lazy and actually purchased a resource on the Unreal Engine Marketplace. That resource contained the core block building functionality you see, but we had to modify it a great deal to not suck. There was no inventory system. The hotbar was very weakly coded - it's the kind of programming nightmare you never want to see, several variables all manually bound to the hotbar. There were about 2-3 variables for the hotbar slots. No easy expandability, even the active slot was done by having 9 textures of the hotbar with the slot overlay appearing in different locations. It was pretty crap. The process for adding a block involved making changes in about 30 locations and was in general just really tacky to deal with. All of this - the hotbar, inventory, and blocks were completely restructured to be easily expandable. Adding a basic block takes no more than a couple minutes (minus the whole texturing stuff, but I'm just talking about getting it into the game and usable). So, what does it look like?
Don't mind some of those broken-seeming textures and other weirdness - those are, as I said, textures. The block building system doesn't do a cool 3D render in the slot like Minecraft would, but instead uses a 2D texture - this includes those ones that look like cubes. So, we just threw on some leftover textures from Project: Infinity that were already in the project temporarily.
As you can see, they aren't your typical generic tooltip of just the item name. The tooltip shows the block slot texture, the name, and the item classification. That and the blue background color will change depending on what item/block it is. Weapons would be, well, weapons. Stone, Grass, and Dirt (and related) will be Natural Materials, ores and crystals will be Minerals, and so on. Also, notice the additional space that just says Debug Item Details. That would show other stats dependent on the block or item as well. Weapons would show stuff like accuracy, rate of fire, damage, and so on. Blocks would show the minimum tool required to break it as well as the time to break, and anything else noteworthy about it. We will likely add a setting to show the debug details for you nerds out there. Maybe we'll even have an option for more simplistic tooltips, because why not?
Anyways, that's about all we've got for now! Just a few clarifications before we go:
You may have noticed the Halo-esque HUD, as well as the fact that most of the inventory stuff looks very much like that of Minecraft. Both of these elements will be changing as we get further in. The Halo HUD is stuff that we were testing for Project: Infinity from back when we were going to develop that in Unreal Engine, most of which is pulled from Halo 3. Except that weird motion tracker placeholder, that was a weird thing I made a while back. As for the Minecraft-looking inventory and hotbar, you can expect that to change and evolve as we go on. We are mainly focused on functionality, and I think most of you can get that but some people like to critique early alpha concepts And, remember - Project: Infinity is not cancelled - nor is Blamite. We will be keeping the applications for both of those open so that, if there are people willing and able to develop them (mainly Blamite since Project: Infinity is dependent on Blamite being complete), we can effectively develop both. If we do get enough people for Blamite to be developed alongside Galactiminer, we'll be sure to announce it. As for those looking to join Galactiminer's team, we will have applications open soon - so be on the lookout for that.
Well, that's the past week or two of progress since our announcement. We hope to get these going semi-regularly as progress happens and the game continues to grow and evolve. Don't forget, we still are running a Kickstarter campaign and we have 21 more days to go - let's make it count, folks! You can check out the Kickstarter page for Galactiminer here.