I novae engine feature requests list

Hey I-Novae Development team,

I have a few feature suggestions / requests that I would like integrated into the engine.

  1. Procedural plant creator - I was talking about this before in [another thread][1]. While you guys have focused on space quite a bit I Feel that focusing on the planets surfaces would be beneficial to your Kick starter and engine in making planets less empty. Things like plants are a major factor in a planets atmosphere as well as keeping the player immersed in the game.

  2. Polar Caps and the equatorial regions - Not every planet has a frozen polar region or a warm equator they do have them in some way shape or form. You COULD use this as a variable or mask to define what plants grow there and what do not. Also it can be used for some visual flare.

  3. Allow us to fine tune the procedural generation. For example - I generate a town with a castle. I would like to fine tune the castle walls, Roads, Building placement, etc.

But most importantly:
Allow us to get away with allot for as little time as possible with your tools.
[1]: Ideas for the I-NOVAE engine not yet covered

  • Ben

We have wish lists like this internally. I someday wish for a Spore-like procedural alien life generator, however, it’s pie in the sky type stuff at this stage.

Much if not all of what you have listed there has been discussed and dreamed about internally, but I can say with quite a bit of certainty, none of that will be in the crowd funding campaign or I:B.

As far as your last point, well ofc, all software users want to do more with less effort :slight_smile: I should probably let Keith answer, but elegant tools take a lot of time, R&D and user testing. Not something we can really do un-funded atm.

As Keith mentioned before, any SDK/tools available after a successful KS would be very un-optimized, raw and without support, and probably would not see public use polishing until after the launch of I:B.


This is definitely on the TODO list but it isn’t a requirement for shipping I:B. If we have the time we’d love to do it but since everybody will be flying around in space ships it is primarily eye candy.

Placing plants on a planet would naturally be a part of our procedural plant system so see above.

What you’re talking about here is procedural cities. While this is also on the TODO list don’t expect to see this until well after I:B ships.

This is, at the most fundamental level, the whole reason tools are built in the first place =).

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Hey @INovaeKeith

Would it be a possibility to put together a mass forest placer for the I novae engine as a temporary solution?

For example:

Import a tree model
Set up materials
Put it in the object placement list
Set the max slope for the object.
Set Variables such as frequency and density.
Hit Generate and let the engine do the rest for you.

or at the very least make plugins very easy to integrate into the engine.

Hey Devs,

I stumbled upon Real-Displacement-Textures (RDT) http://real-displacement-textures.com

Will Inovae-Engine ever support these? I think for ground textures this could give a huge boost on realism.

What is your opinion on RDT? @INovaeKeith @INovaeFlavien

Yeah, we’d like to eventually support it. We’d have to implement displacement mapping / hardware tesselation in the engine, but due to lack of resources we’re more focusing on the game than the technology at the moment.


Thank you for the reply, Flavien. I am really looking forward to features like this.

We could always start a Kickstarter for engine features haha.


I would back that :slightly_smiling:

I would back it too, not sure who would code it though. :confused:

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Each feature would cost the amount of money it would take to hire a contractor to implement it unless we raised enough to hire somebody to simply work on the engine for X time. For example if we raised $100k we might be able to hire somebody to simply implement as many new engine features as possible in a year.

You sound like you have thought this through, are you maybe considering this?

Is force feedback (haptic feedback) a game engine feature? I have no idea, apologies if its not.

I would like to have at least well thought out and programmed haptic feedback for the xbox 360/One/Pro type controllers (inc xbox one triggers), and at an extreme push full and proper force feedback for joysticks/HOTAS.

Well programmed force feedback right across the game would be nice for those of us who like force feedback. But just haptic feedback for the xbox type controllers (inc One triggers) would be great if time permits near the end of development or soon after release in a major patch of the post release game. I appreciated that things like trackIR need to come first.

*below is some general thoughts text I have used to lobby for FFB on ED and SC forums.

Forces? What forces are there in a space craft with all electronic controls!?

Even in space, the ships in IB, ED and SC could easily have full and proper force feedback support to further aid the tactile joystick immersion, if you like haptic feedback that is. Made anew for 2016 space games.

There are forces and effects that can be represented absolutely everywhere on a space craft via haptic feedback forces and vibrations through the hull, airlock hatches, cargo bay doors, landing gear, and engine thrust. Vibrations from Landing gear operation, landing and take off forces and vibration, atmospheric flight - both entry and exit, atmospheric exit thrust forces, impacts in asteroid fields and with other space objects impacting the shields and hull including other ships or docking rings. Entering and exiting hyperspace and interdictions (ED and SC). Ballistic weapons fire vibration, combat damage vibrations from ballistic weapons fire and missile hits to shield impacts. Then three could be the vibration forces from using afterburners or sudden reverse thrust. And even some opposite force when nearing stress limits - and in very tight turns, a slow force building up when near blackout and then maybe a stick shaker reminder.

Once a well programmed set of haptic events are worked out and all set for a basic one size fits all ships. Then testing it out right across the games solar system. If all goes well, then start o adjust the haptic events for each ship and class type.

For example, the xbox one triggers would be perfect for engine thrust. One trigger would then give the player engine thrust feedback, and even indications of a failing engine.

Modern jets, and especially the newer ones do have haptic feedback, all with varying degrees of force. Different countries outfit their versions of the fighter jets with haptic feedback sticks and throttles. There are several companies that do this, supplying very expensive flight sticks and throttles to give the pilot some sense of feedback through he stick and throttle, for flight and flight simulators.

And although unlikely to happen now, but I would really like to see some haptic feedback on the left hand throttle of a force feedback HOTAS. To FEEL the ships engines throttle up and down will give a good pilot an extra tactile feedback on the state of their engines. Something no one has really attempted yet.

We hadn’t considered doing a separate crowdfunding campaign for engine features but we’ve certainly always been aware of the effort/cost it would take to improve the engine. I hadn’t thought about a separate engine crowdfunding campaign until just now. If we were to actually do that I think the following steps would be necessary given that in all likelihood only ppl already highly active within the community would be interested in pledging:

  1. Identify the features most ppl want in order of priority
  2. Figure out the cost for those items
  3. Based on the cost/desire ratio put together a chronological list of features
  4. Launch campaign with a final stretch goal of shipping a public SDK

I’m not confident we’d be able to raise a lot of money for this so it’s not something we’re seriously considering atm.


Also, big distraction!

Sort of, all of those engine features would become a part of the game including the SDK since we want to support modding at some point.

You guys have already proved with the prototype you have something good. So just keep on doing what your doing, heads down development. I have very little money spare for gaming, but was happy to give to this project. But also, if there is a chance of reaching some of those stretch goals as funding increases over the next year or so, then I see a pledge top up coming in the future from me.

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in my honest (and not so welcomed) opinion, i would focus on preparing the engine for consumer usage like unreal and now cry engine did. selling assets and putting an end on money problems. i would also forget and gave up this ridiculous begging kickstarter, have a good heart and some charity to try out the battle system, and i would look at this battle system like a good start to work in the real cash economy game, like if the last feature of the game was done already, you need an mmorpg in the planets surface.

So you would have I-Novae completely change focus? Instead of making this game (which they have already poured so much effort into, and continue to do so), they should just make the engine, then do a planet-bound MMORPG?

This is backwards. They need to prove their engine’s capabilities with I:B, and test it, before marketing the engine itself. They do not have the resources or money to make an MMO yet (which was the original plan), but it will likely be an epic space adventure, not another WoW clone.

More to the point, this has been Flavien’s dream for many years and I can’t see him changing direction now - nor should he! Stick on this path, with the funding you’ve secured guys!

Knowing irn4l this is at least one of his better comments.

Just ignore his real world economy BS … no one wants it anyway.

I think the engine shouldn’t be worked on, except for minor changes, until Battlescape is released. Then they can re-evaluate what they want to do with it and what resources they have. Making Battlescape a good game should be priority and the engine is good enough, except for the parts that are worked on right now. I think the Gameplay will be more of a challenge than some may think.

Also. I don’t think Kickstarter will work that good anymore. We gave everything and just barely made it past the goal last time. Real cash income from real products would be much nicer for both sides. You could also maybe try another platform in the future, one that maybe isn’t as one sided as KS … but not right after release, a few months after.

I also wish for the engine to get out and be used by more people. But I-Novae has high standards and it doesn’t look like they have the 1.5 devs more to make that happen anytime soon. Selling assets won’t pay them either.

Also @INovaeKeith , the best way to support Modding with the least effort is to leave your game as open as possible … that will boost Modding no matter what. Sure it isn’t as extensive as it could be with proper tools, but it’s better than having a modding community that is completly dependent on what tools are given to them. If you decide to close down the system because you will “do it right” later, it will kill the Modding community before it is even started. Moding has some value to the company … but for such a small studio and with a small budged I don’t think, at the end, you’ll put any high priority on it, even after release. Moders want to start moding the game right away, if they can’t change at least something while they wait for tools, they will just move on.