Weekly Update #98

Hey everyone, it’s time for your weekly update! I’m happy to announce that I can finally give a timeline for the next patch – our plan is to release it by the end of next week (this includes the weekend). If everything goes smoothly we’ll likely announce our next Alpha backer test weekend within a week or two after the patch is released. The patch will contain the initial version 1 implementation of our new weapon code, though capital ship weapons and missile countermeasures will still be a work in progress, and a bunch of art updates. Weapons will require constant tweaking over the coming months and we’ll likely introduce additional variation as we begin preparing to transition from Alpha to Beta.

Playing around with different shield effects

Looking toward the future the most obvious next step will be improving capital ship weapons, adding support for countermeasures, and making warp easier to use. Once that’s complete our focus will shift to the resource system, radar/sensors, and re-arming/repairing – which represent the 3 major gameplay systems remaining to be implemented and are pre-requisites for the release of the Alpha. After that, when core gameplay is representative of the final product, we will start the Beta, which will be our polish phase.

WIP final geometry for the space whale bobblehead

As we mentioned at the beginning of the year our goal is to release the Alpha in the first half of this year followed by the Beta by the end of the year. The initial implementation of weapons ended up taking 2-3 weeks longer than we had expected but we’re still optimistic we can maintain that schedule. Regardless of the exact dates we release the Alpha or the Beta, the single most important thing for this to be a successful year is that by the end of it we have a fun game. If we need to have an extended Beta period in 2019 to polish everything up for final release so be it but we simply cannot be successful if we don’t have a fun game. That’s all for this week, until next time!


Shields look cool - I guess they’ll only be visible when hit? I think an effect that makes the point of impact more distinct would be cool.

I much prefer the new whale bobble design, although not keen on the ‘chin’…

Any ideas you can share on how to achieve this?


Are these ditches in the shield to be coming from emmiters? If so it’s nice to see where the source is. I agree that the shield should only be visible when hit. Maybe when getting close House of the Dying Sun style.


+1 for invisible unless hit.

On the one hand, the conformal shape is VERY cool, on the other hand i had hoped for the shields to extend far enough that skilled bomber pilots could fly inside them for extra damage / avoiding the shields. Is the size of the shields still up for negotiation or set?

Need to see the effects in motion to get a really good impression, but from the screenshots bottom left looks best. Top left and bottom right are too opaque, hiding too much of the ship. Top two look too clean/smooth.

Being more visible towards impact points would be great, however i am aware that with potentially hundreds of overlapping impact points that might simply be too challenging to implement in a good way.

Visible emitter origins is a very nice touch - especially if it ties into gameplay and you can target and destroy the emitters!

Not sure if clear blue is a colour that matches Starfold designs well. I guess that is easy to change and experiment with, i could imagine some “dirty” industrial orange to look quite good for SFC.

(In my imagination, Blue = Deltans, Green/White = Centaurans.)

As for the Whale, make Hat and Monocle optional please. I would prefere it without them.


Exciting update, thanks!

I love a good visual cue for hitting shield instead of hull. Much better than watching HUD icons.


(Heh, quoting from a later post…)


The shield effect so far lacks the modulation with a “shield impact” texture, so yeah, when there’s no hit the shield won’t be visible. The idea is to render impacts into a texture and make them “ripple” like a water droplet - and multiply that with the effect you’re currently seeing in the screenshots. However that ripple texture might not get implemented in the first stage ( maybe more towards beta when we polish everything ), so in the mean time it’s possible we’ll simply modulate the entire shield with a value depending on the last impact timer.


How did that work lol.

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I posted moments before Flavien, then saw his post and edited a bit in! Freak of timing is all :joy:


Will any of this shield stuff be in the next patch?


Those shields look awesome, particularly the top left one!


Great work on the whale!
And the shields are looking sexy :sunglasses:


No, the shields won’t be in the upcoming patch, but right after ( for the next alpha week-end ).


The top two shield effects look great. I’m not a fan of ‘noise’ style effects on shields especially if they flicker. If it shows up in front of the cockpit it can be super distracting in combat.

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If these pits are shield emmitters, do they constitute a weakness? They sure look like one.

Don’t overdo it please. Also, what have you in mind for shield weakening/droping effects? Or boosting when the energy reserve is routed to the shields?

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:heart_eyes: She…he…it is so pretty

Shields look neat. I like the clear gradient most appealing…those emitters suggest interesting things :hushed:

I think if it is very high frequency noise then it’s ok. I agree that the low frequency ‘camoflage-esq’ noise shown in the bottom ones looks too much, but it will of course look very different in reality due to it being constantly changing.


SC does the “extreme shield noise” right in front of your face, its extremely irritating and distracting, might not want to go that route.

ex. https://youtu.be/t9ddRqiMLjg?t=342


I really like the top-right shield effect, though the other effects could be used in certain conditions. In terms of shield mechanics i really enjoy the ones from Starsector. Hope to see more info on preliminary shield mechanics and graphics.

Something along the lines of Independence Day for hits?

Was looking for the original film but this shows what I mean :grin:

I wonder if the shield could fragment as it fails? Something akin to this, but probably faster than it happens in the film. Still, the idea of holes appearing as it collapses would be nice.

I would love to see some kind of slowish crumbling/withering/disintegrating effect when the shield has run out of power. A fighter could exploit a hole, capital ships could batter it to pieces. It would be cool and imply some physicality to the shield. (Might be a bit harder to implement though…!)

Edit: a still shot of shield effects. Now imagine blue instead of green.


As long as we’re tossing out ideas, how about a simple shatter pattern on the shield at the point of impact? It quickly fades away, but it would be innocuous because it’s just a bunch of lines, it can be procedural for variety’s sake, and I can’t think of anyone who has done it that way.

When the shield fails, shatter the shield entirely. If desired, have the pieces literally break off and fade out.

Impacts in an area would just refresh the crack there. So if you hammered away at a point on the shield, you’d just keep that crack pattern and possibly enlarge it. But you shouldn’t get 30 little cracks in one area or you’re back to the shield blocking your vision because of the sheer number of lines produced.

If shields were presented like that, they would suggest that you could stop energy or matter weapons because there’s a physical substance around the ship, sustained in its form and strength by the application of lots of energy.