Over the past couple of years, I’ve noticed that there are two words — as well as variations of these words — that get me more excited than almost any other. Those are “procedurally generated”, as well as its cousin, “randomly generated”. I mean, I’ve always loved randomness in games because replayability is a big factor in my enjoyment of a game, but lately this one factor has been even more important than ever. I started thinking of this topic because recently a game I had NO interest in called Don’t Starve shot to the top of my interest meter once I read “Randomly Generated New Worlds” in the list of the game’s features. I don’t even LIKE survival games that much, but randomly generated worlds? Sign me the hell up. This made me begin to wonder both why I love procedural generation so much, and how it figures into the realm of space gaming.
Hey kids, how are ya? I’m chiming in because I just had a Google+ Hangout session with some friends over on Broken Forum in which they graciously took the time and helped me learn Kerbal Space Program a little better, and it was hilarious. With their help, I made my first orbit and also landed on the Mun! Yay!
It’s on the long side (as these things can get), and I’m still learning about these Hangouts, so for a spell I forgot to click on my little chat window to focus it on the game. I also think I need to learn to use some of the programs my buddy Paul told me about after the last hangout. I apologize for any quality issues, but please bear with me as I’m still learning. :)
Aaaanyway, I hope you enjoy it!
Hellllllloooo my friends, and happy Friday! The weekend is FINALLY upon us! YES! Sorry about the lack of news for the past couple of days, there was some other stuff I needed to get done first before this, so I hope y’all don’t mind. :) Even though my time has been consumed with Distant Worlds: Shadows, I’ve still managed to fit in some X3: Albion Prelude, so I’ll have something on that early next week. I also hope to tackle some more TIE Fighter this weekend as well. But enough about me, there’s a LOT of newsiness to talk about!!!
- Distant Worlds: Shadows – Speaking of which, that crazy cat Das24680 has three new videos of him playing the game. THREE. I wish I had his dedication/energy. YouTube user quill18 also has a Let’s Try video of him playing the game. These’ll all be embedded below too.
- EVE Online – Several articles today, first from the official site, including a look at the next decade and an article on the Crossing Zebras podcast. Then, The Mittani has an article on introducing kids to the game, as well as reduced clone costs in Odyssey.
- Infinite Pixels – Thanks to Rock, Paper Shotgun for making us aware of this “voxel space exploration game“. Oh look, there’s a trailer as well! :)
- Star Trek Online – We have a two new Legacy of Romulus dev blog entries, one on the Klingon Defence Force, and one on the Numbus adventure zone.
- Gimbal – There’s a new expansion for the game that adds new game modes, new parts, new maps and more. Looks like now’d be a good time to try it, huh? ;) I got a copy last year and it sadly fell through the cracks during my nutty Summer. I should rectify that problem…
- Star Sonata 2 – There’s also a new expansion pack coming for this game next month called “Subspace Assault” that which adds restructured content and other stuff.
- Aeon Command – The devs have posted the first part of the game’s post mortem, which makes for great reading.
- Rogue System – There’s a new dev diary entry over on the game’s forums.
- Predestination – There’s also a new April dev update for this game on the game’s official site (which REALLY needs an RSS feed, dangit). ;)
- Star Citizen – There’s a new video up interviewing customer support guru Brittany Godfrey, who we’ve likely all dealt with at least once. ;) The video will also be embedded below. There’s also an update showing storyboards of the planet Stanton Landing, a new writer’s guide installment, and a fan focus video which I’ll embed below.
- X3: Albion Prelude – There’s a big new 3.0 patch for the game that adds new plots, mission types, controller support and so on. A small hotfix was shortly released afterwards to fix some savegame issues. ;) Looks awesome, I can try my new 360 gamepad with it. ;)
- Strike Suit Zero – There’s a new update looking at their Oculus Rift support, which I sadly can’t embed (silly Kickstarter vids).
- Void of Darkness – They have a new website with more information on the game for y’all to check out. :)
- Lunar Flight – The multiplayer beta is now available on Steam for PC players!
- Epic Space Game – There’s a new version of the game which includes an official Mac client, an improved H.U.D. and more!
Now we have deals!!! First, I suppose to celebrate the release of its major 3.0 patch as noted above, some of the X games are on sale at a few places, such as:
- X3: Albion Prelude for $6.69 on Steam
- X3: Terran War Pack (Terran Conflict and Albion Prelude) for $13.39 on Steam
- X3: Goldbox (Reunion, Terran Conflict and Albion Prelude) for $16.74 on Steam
- X: Superbox (All X games ever) for $26.79 on Steam (which is the best deal, really)
- X3: Terran Conflict 2.0 for $9.99 on NewEgg (if you want a boxed version)
Next in deals, Amazon is having a HUGE Digital Games Mayhem sale, yet it only includes a few space games (of which are of questionable quality, but I mention ‘em regardless), such as:
Finally in related stuff, the folks at the amazing Three Moves Ahead podcast had a great podcast on 4X games.
That’s it!! WHEW! Have a great weekend everyone.
Back in January, I got a PM on Matrix Games’ forum asking if I wanted into the beta for Distant Worlds: Shadows, the third expansion for what’s become my favorite space 4X games (and one of my favorite games period). I would’ve been excited at the time…had I thought to visit the forums themselves. ;) I totally missed the boat in getting in on the beta MONTHS ago, so yeah, sadface. Thankfully, however, I was brought into the beta until a couple of weeks ago, and crammed several hours of playtime with one of the more recent beta versions. Make no mistake, this expansion adds a TON of stuff to an already bountiful game, and in this preview, I’ll look at the main additions to the game — pirate factions, ground combat enhancements, the Age of Shadows and so on — and discuss how these affect the game on their own, as well as how they affect the traditional empire play that the game is known for. With that said, let’s dive in. :)
Hey guys and gals. I’m chiming in because I just finished a massive Google+ Hangout on Air with some folks from Gamers with Jobs in which they asked me to show them Distant Worlds with the new expansion, Shadows. It kinda goes all over the place, but it shows a good bit of gameplay from the empire’s side of things. You can expect my formal review of Distant Worlds: Shadows likely tomorrow.
Enjoy the video! (Also, this is my second Hangout on Air ever, and I barely had any idea what I was doing, so please be gentle ;)
Hey guys, welcome to my weekly op-ed column that I’m calling “Spacing Out” (the name was a joint effort between my girlfriend and I ;). I realized I’d not been really writing enough op-ed pieces, and came up with the idea of doing them weekly, both as a writing exercise and a way to put thoughts and ideas out there to share and discuss with y’all. :) I’ll be doing these every Wednesday, because if I don’t set a specific day to do ‘em, I never will, you know? ;) Recently, 4X games have been on my mind after the recent release of StarDrive. After I made my decision to put my review of the game on hold, I was taken to task on a forum I frequent for not liking other recent entries in the 4X space race, such as Endless Space and Sword of the Stars II. This got me to thinking, what HAS been going on with spacey 4X games of late?
Continue reading “Spacing Out: The Trouble with 4X Games” »
Hey kids, welcome to episode #13 of the Space Game Junkie! This time, Jim and I get up early in the morning to talk to Malcolm Sparrow, the lead developer of space combat and trading game Dominium (formerly known as Dominion) and it’s current Kickstarter campaign. This podcast is a bit shorter than usual because we did it at 6 AM my time, and I had to rush to work afterwards, just so y’all know. ;) As a treat, you’re all hearing me pre-coffee. ;)
As always, we invite you to comment on the podcast below, invite you to subscribe to us via RSS or iTunes, and thank you for listening. Enjoy! :)
Helllooooooooo my good friends. How are y’all doin’? Sorry about missing posting the news yesterday, just been a bit crazy around here, but good! Spent time with both X3: Albion Prelude and Distant Worlds: Shadows, so expect stuff on that soon (once I have time to actually write it up), and recorded a podcast to talk about Dominium, which you’ll hear soon. Now, onto the news!
- Distant Worlds: Shadows – OMG, apparently we can talk about it now. How do I know this? ;) There’s a new preview from Space Sector, as well as several new videos from Das24680 (LOVE that guy) showing off the game (which will also be embedded below). I’ve been able to dive in myself recently, so I’ll have my preview up within the next couple of days, as it comes out next week!!!
- EVE Online – Lots of news for this game. First, from the official site, we have dev blogs on hacking in Odyssey as well as planetary conquest changes. From The Mittani, we have more articles covering Odyssey, namely naval battleship rebalancing, dual character training and exploration, as well as a storyline primer for May, 2013.
- Dominium – This game used to be called Dominion, it’s been renamed after getting a C&D from another game of the same name, and is now called Dominium. Other updates cover DRM (or lack thereof), a new station, the Pengari 40 race, and another concept ship. Stay tuned for our podcast with the lead dev soon. :)
- StarDrive – Holy hell, it’s a deluge of reviews!! We have ‘em from IncGamers, BagoGames, Gamespot Australia, IGN, The Tech Scoop, SnackBar Games, VGU, The Page of Reviews, GameInformer, Press2Reset,Overclocker’s Club and GamersGlobal (in German). Wheeeeew, I’m out of virtual breath.
- Star Citizen – A bevy of recent updates, including part six of their writer’s guide, concept art of the planet Armitage, analysys of a Vanduul warship, an in-game ad for the Omni-Bel Ship Dealership and an update to the user support system. Away from the main site, we have two videos of Chris Roberts playing with the Razer Edge, a hotspot video and a full-length video, both of which will be embedded below. Don’t why the different names, they’re both around eight minutes in length.
- Star Trek Online – There have been three new updates discussing the Legacy of Romulus expansion. The first covers Romulan Warbirds stats, the second looks at warp cores, and the final at console set bonuses. Whatever that means. ;)
- Strike Suit Infinity – There’s a new review up from IncGamers.
- Void of Darkness – Two new videos, showing all weapons and one showing cluster bombs. Both with also be embedded below.
- Quintet – Their Android Kickstarter made its goal, so it’ll be coming to Android! Woohoo!
- Artemis – In similar news, this bridge simulation software IS now available for Android. Woohoo! ;)
- Beyond Beyaan – There’s a new progress update that talks about how…progress on the game is going. ;)
- Retrobooster – There’s a new updated demo out with a bunch of new bug fixes. I really need to give this a whirl again, now that I have a gamepad. :)
- AI War – There’s a new update entitled “So I Rewired It” which contains work going into the next major revision of the game, version 7.0. They’re calling it a “foundational upheavel”.
- Icarus Ascends – These guys have their own website now! Yay!
- Galaxial – There’s a new update on ship fitting, which looks nifty.
- And Here the Wheel – There’s a new podcast episode up by the author of the official novel of Elite: Dangerous. Check it out.
Whew, that’s a heckuva lot of news, but we’re not done! We also have DEALS!
- The folks behind Show me The Games are having a huge sale, which you go to their site and get codes for discounts. This includes:
- Smugglers V! for $5 off
- Beat Hazard Ultra for 50% off
- Space Pirates and Zombies for 50% off
- Evochron Mercenary for 40% off
- As part of a larger Deep Silver Sale, you can get these games on Green Man Gaming for a discount (the deals aren’t available in my region, so I apologize, but I can’t see the prices):
- Green Man Gaming also has an EVE Online starter pack for $4.99
Finally, in unrelated news, the Kickstarter for CDF Ghostship has begun. The dev is a really nice guy who frequents our forums, so I wanted to do him a solid. ;)
Thanks for reading guys and gals, and have an awesome day!
Haaaaaaaaayyyy guuuuuuuuys, how are ya? Sorry for the delay in this week’s podcast episode, but Jim and I were both busier than usual this week with the real life nonsense. That said, we had no guest this past week, so we just caught up on what we’ve been playing, the news and all sorts of other stuff. It was a fun time, so we hope you enjoy it.
As always, please feel free to comment on the podcast below (I’m not creating specific forum threads anymore, no one uses ‘em ;) and follow us using RSS and/or iTunes. Thanks for listening!
Hey folks, happy Thursday! I hope y’all are having a great week and looking forward to the weekend! I spent some time flailing about in X3: Albion Prelude, but honestly I wanna see if I can get past the flailing and find the game sometime this weekend, so hopefully I’ll have an article on that soon. ;) What are you kids playing? :) On the news front, some good stuff today, so here we go!
- Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion – The first DLC pack for this game will be arriving on June 5th! Entitled “Forbidden Worlds“, it will add four new planet types, fifteen research subjects and more. This is a perfect excuse for me to revisit the game, since it got lost in the shuffle during last year’s hectic Summer/move craziness. :) Besides that DLC, there’s a new beta patch incoming with a ton of additions and fixes. Sadly it breaks save games, apparently.
- Void of Darkness – We have a new video showing off the game’s point defense system. It’ll also be embedded after the cut.
- Quintet – A while back I mentioned this fun multi-person bridge game that works in a browser or iPad (I still have to get enough people together to give it a proper review). Well now there’s a Kickstarter to bring the game to Android, and all with cross-platform support. Check it out!
- EVE Online – The Mittani has a story/video about how the author took down a Titan. Video will be below.
- Strike Suit Zero – The folks at Born Ready game have launched the Born Ready Game Jam which have the team splitting into two smaller teams and using the game’s mod tools to make a game mod in four days. I can’t wait to see what they dig up.
- Star Citizen – There’s a video interviewing John Erskine, Cloud Imperium’s Director of Studio Services. I’ll also embed it below.
- Star Trek Online – There’s a new dev blog for Legacy of Romulus covering Romulan republic personnel.
- Shadow Genesis – The folks behind this Freespace Open mod are looking for some help over on Hard Light Production’s forums.
- Sol Trader – Over on the site’s blog, the dev has a detailed post looking into making the web version of the game.
In deals, we have one today! Iron Sky Invasion is “only” $9.99 at GamersGate right now. I tried to watch the movie this is based on…so I’ll wait for a deeper sale. ;)
Finally, in related news, GOG has converted ten more games for use on Macs. None of ‘em are space games, but there’s some great stuff in there regardless.
That’s it for now folks. I hope y’all are having a lovely day!