Weekly Dev Update – December 12th, 2014

Posted on December 12, 2014 by Adam


This week has been chock full of tying up loose ends in desk-related features (rolodex, datapad, paper reports, etc.) to get all that to a usable state. I won’t list individual tweaks but I’ll say again that I’m really happy how all that is coming together!

Go vote for us on IndieDB! We’re in the top 100 so let’s rock that leaderboard!


Hello, Biological Units. This week has been another where I focus on the different sections. Some additional work was done on finishing up the Holding Cell and Decontamination section. After that I worked a while on the Main Computer and the Life Support sections, each with their own complications.

The former needs to both be a potential work place and act as a transit hub in smaller stations. The latter is a collection of very complex hardware (irl) which, on the ISS for example, tends to be something packed into a metal box, hiding away all the techy goodness. Both of these of course, as most everything, requires me figuring out the visual balance between what looks useable, what looks good and what isnt insanely high-poly.



This week, here’s what I did:

  1. Finished the game code and database tables for the V3 story system. (system is done, working, etc)
  2. Wrote a tool that auto-converts my human-readable story design into the database format.
  3. I also did a number of smaller (unplanned) upgrades to the system as I thought of them. The goal is maximum flexibility when creating the plot points which stories navigate. We take the words “anything can happen” seriously.
  4. Got about 2/3 of the way through a design-review of my test-case, which is the narrative options that are triggered when a crew member on an away mission is tasked with exploring a forested location.

By monday, I should have it all ready for an internal demo. Keep in mind this is part of the basic underpinnings which will constitute our AI Storyteller (since it needs to manage all ongoing “stories” and keep track of how they all connect), so I really want to get it right before rolling it out, and hooking it all up. (It’s currently running in a stand-alone mode).

We made the top 100!

Posted on December 11, 2014 by Adam

Congratulations space-friends! Out of 10000 games up for nomination by the community for the IndieDB Indie of the Year Award, we just made the top 100!

Now help us climb the ranks further and get the word out by voting in this final round!

2014 Indie of the Year Awards via Indie DB

Thanks again for your contribution and we’re looking forward to ringing in the New Year with what we’ve been working on!

12 Hours To Go – Spacelane to the IndieDB Top 100

Posted on December 10, 2014 by Max Shields

2014 Indie of the Year Awards via Indie DB

Hi everybody,

There are 12 hours left before voting closes on first slice of the IndieDB 2014 Indie of The Year awards.

Once voting closes, the top 100 games will be announced, and voting will start over to find the top pick.

So head on over to Astrobase Command on IndieDB and vote. Bonus awesomeness if you can convince friends, family and coworkers to take part, too!

Help us Reach for the Stars

Posted on December 7, 2014 by Max Shields

Vote for Astrobase Command as IndieDB’s Indie the Year contest

There are 3 days left until voting closes on IndieDB’s Indie of the Year contest. Please help us make the list by heading over and lending your vote for Astrobase Command.

Weekly Dev Update – December 5th, 2014

Posted on December 5, 2014 by Adam


Greetings fellow human beings. This week started with me polishing the 3D UI components as well as adding some new ones. After that I worked on a new layout for the ID cards and for the printed labels on the Datapad cartridges.

What’s tricky with both of these is to display enough information on them but not so much that it becomes too difficult to read or just take in key information from a glance. Usually, one way to do this is to look at what the most modern styles look like since they tend to be optimized a bit better. However, for something like ABC I can not stray too far towards modern or it will clash with everything so an in-between solution has to be figured out.

Once I got done with that I made the Decontamination and Holding Cell sections. I like how they turned out but for those kept in the Holding Cell it’s best not to be too shy as anyone walking by can currently see the combined shower/toilet quite clearly.


Over the past several days, I’ve spent some time designing some mouse icons. It turns out that getting into such small a scale took more forethought and experimentation than I was expecting to keep everything readable.

I’ve also been helping Dave develop some scenario chunks for the AI Storyteller. This involves writing up bits of events that the storyteller can flag and use to build up a bigger storyline, bit by bit. I’ve written about 60 different scenarios for forest region events, and have now moved on to dry and dust region events, which will result in another 80-90 story building blocks to work with.

Let’s just say that the away teams are going to find that the universe is a pretty dangerous place to explore. But then it wouldn’t be an adventure if it wasn’t, would it?


Still working on the v3 system for procedural narrative generation. It’s taking a bit longer than I’d like, but here are the steps and where I am at:

1) Designing the overview that allows me to plan each subplot & keep track of everything
2) Designing/writing the data itself
3) Writing a script that verifies the data.
4) Designing the system codes that will be used to represent the data in the db
5) Writing the exporter from human-readable design format to db format <--- I am here
6) Writing the code classes that load the data into code from the database (will adapt from v2 sytem)
7) Writing the storygen code (will adapt from v2 sytem)

Looking to get it all in by Monday, if I can push through the weekend.


Following up on the integration of the 3D desk GUI, I’ve been rolling the character rolodex into it as well. It’s been nice taking debug GUI out of the game in favor of actual stuff that are fun to interact with.

I’m looking forward to showing off the final product, as there’s something uniquely satisfying about moving documents around, manipulating the datapad and flipping through the rolodex.

Next step is to get the datapad on the desk. Once that’s done, I’ll finalize the tweaks I need to some of the datapad programs so we can get a playable build out to you!