Name this Game (Fleet-based spaceship combat)


#1

Hi guys,

I’m doing some really early work on a future game that revolves around commanding a space fleet and blowing up enemy space fleets. There are a mix of ships from fighter squadrons to massive dreadnoughts. I’m also incorporating cool things like black holes, gravity wells, gas clouds for cover, meteorites, boarding actions, short-range warp jumps for tactical benefit, etc.

Here’s some really early pre-alpha screen shots to give you an idea. Think big fleets of big ships blasting each other apart with really big weapons. Will be on iOS, Android, Windows 10 and PC.

The GUI is still a place holder. I’m going to go with a totally different UI that is more minimal. Also, I need a name for the game. So far, I’m thinking “Planet Killers” or perhaps the more mundane “Strike Fleet” or perhaps “War Fleet”?

Let me know what you think.


#2

Here’s another pic with a closer up shot of the space ships.

The game is a long, long way off … hopefully some time this year but likely not before October or November if it is. Still in early design phase so if there’s any cool ideas you want me to try and incorporate, let me know.


#3

Hi,

this seems rather promising and rigth up my alley.

One thing to note, please spend half an hour with your top 10 name list on app store or google play and use the search functunality.

There is a crapton of bland battleship ripp-offs etc. with “War”, “Ships”, “Fleet” in the Name in the shops as well as other shovelware.
To improve visibility and searchability I would suggest a uniqe word in the Name.

So “Strike Fleet Sirius” or “War in Space: Delta Novus” or else…

Sirius and Novus for example shouldn’t give 20 pages of search results back than without them…anyway keep us posted on your progress, looking forward to it.

Edit:
And be wary of trademarks.

Battlestation Harbinger had to go trough a name change as well. Planet Killer is an rather unique Unit in the Battlefleet Gothic (Battle+Fleet+Gothic see what I am hinting at ;-P) Warhammer 40k Universe. It may be protected already somehow…related Lexicanum link as Games Workshop is rather protective.


#4

Cool … thanks for the info. I’m thinking that you’re right and I’ll need to add some unique element to the name rather than go for something more generic. I tried a generic name and could barely find anything that wasn’t already taken.

Here’s another question for you, the backgrounds are colourful galaxy pictures. I want to have the battles situated within 1 to 3 solar systems but I don’t want to have the same galaxy background used again and again. I suppose that in a given point in space, the galactic skyline would look more or less the same so I suppose I should stick to 1 galaxy skyline per solar system. However, that seems dull … would you be bothered by different looking skylines in battles set within the same solar system?


#5

This looks sharp so far - I agree with @Private_Prinny insofar as the name. Throw a Delta or Raxor or Neptune or some other non-generic name in there for recognition and searchability. And please don’t let it fall into the “very pretty but repetitive play” that doomed Sid Meier’s Starships or whatever that was called.


#6

Thanks for the insights.

I haven’t played Sid Meier’s Starships so no frame of reference. The code base is the same as that used by the Demon’s Rise games so there will be a lot of variety of unit types, lots of interesting abilities (buffs, debuffs, area effect abilities, control enemy units, deploying fighters during battle, warp jump, etc.), tactical benefits to terrain / position, direction-based cover and some completely new morale system.

The morale system is something I’m trying to ponder … I want to have a ship’s morale to affect its fighting ability and the likelihood that it might do an emergency jump away from the battlefield or even surrender to the enemy to avoid destruction. There will be boarding actions possible and I’d like the chance of a successful boarding action depend on the boarding party strength vs. target ship’s crew strength and possibly morale.

Here’s a picture that shows the square grid that the battle is played on. The grid only shows up when it’s needed to reduce draw calls / CPU usage and make it better for mobile.


#7

On the Background, please think back to some Space games you played or Sci-Fi Books you’ve read. An uniform background actually IS boring so spicing things up a bit helps a lot.

Reference:
Galactic Background of Star clusters in Mass Effect 1-2-3…the galaxy may be the same , the “local” features in the clusters were pretty different.

Even better the old Homeworld 1 Game. The Art style was pretty fantastic and while travelling on a straight line trough half the galaxy the possibilities were limitles.

Dark Space between worlds, Asteroid Fields, Radiated Space Clouds (Garden of Kadesh), Supernova, etc.

If the 3 Star systems are close together it may be difficult to achieve, but if they are spread out you have tons of “local” options you could add.


#8

Ah, Homeworld. I still shed a tear that it never made it to mobile…


#9

If you didn’t want to include an invented name, you could reference vacuum. Seems like a more useful way to distinguish space from terrestrial, atmospheric, or nautical locations, doesn’t it? Taken literally, “space” is sort of assumed outside of cyberpunk-esque conflicts, right? Yet everybody talks about space, almost nobody talks about vacuum.

I blame Hoover.


#10

Yeah, I was thinking of including something about the more unique elements of space warfare such as the fact that there’s no sound or that there’s no “ground”. I was thinking “Silent Death” but then found out there’s already a game with that name.

I’m leaning towards “Strike Fleet XXX” or the “The XXXX War” or something where XXXX is a name of a star system or something. MIght look at existing solar system names and see if there are some cool ones out there to use.

Regarding morale mechanics, how do you guys think they should work at the starship level. I think a star captain is responsible not only to his admiral but also to the thousands of lives that are on his ship. So I’m not sure that they would readily sacrifice themselves for the military campaign. Similarly, the loss of a starship would be a huge blow to any military and the loss of an entire fleet would likely not be worth whatever moon or shiny asteroid they were fighting over.

So I’m trying to figure out how to reflect this in the game. A couple options:

1 - Make death permanent for each battle. Players start with a fleet of ships and every casualty they suffer permanently reduces their fleet. Allow ships to jump out of a battlefield at a player’s command so that they are not lost from his fleet completely.

2 - Make individual ships do strange things when their “morale” value is low such as surrendering to an enemy fleet to avoid destruction or jumping out of the battlefield. This means that the individual space captain places his ship’s safety over that of the admiral’s plans and this could be a nasty surprise for the player.

What do you guys think would be better? Full control by the player of each ship but with permadeath, or less control of individual ship actions once morale has collapsed? Or perhaps both?


#11

I like both… have to think on the morale issue, but definitely permadeath. I know I’d play recklessly (foolishly) if there were no consequences to the loss of a ship or crew…


#12

Permadeath isn’t the only “punishment” option…

Just look to Battlefleet Gothic: Armada for example…crippled or destroyed ships are out of comission for several battles/ turn.


#13

I tried to get my wife to let me name my son “Arcturus”.

Both permadeath and reduced control are present in XCOM. Does that feel about like what you’re going for?

Another option might be to encourage other ships to adopt higher-risk strategies. I feel like people often refuse to set their sights lower when they’ve had a setback, and feel as though the only way to redeem a high cost is with a huge win.


#14

Hey guys, sorry for the late reply … I was on a family vacation in Cuba.

Arcturus is a cool … perhaps “War Fleet Arcturus”. Maybe something simpler. Thanks for the ideas, though.


#15

So how a re things proceeding on the development front over there? :slight_smile:


#16

Sorry for lack of updates. Been extremely busy trying to get my next game ready for launch. It’s a different game … a sci-fi tactical RPG that has a Space Hulk / XCOM vibe. I’ll post a separate thread about it now that it’s submitted to Apple for review.


#17

I wish you all the best with the launch of Strike Team Hydra and expecting news on this game now soon :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

I was right with my first impression of the UI from STH…it looked very familiar :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


#18

Yeah, I built the UI that this game is using for Strike Team Hydra and just ported it over. I’ll change the UI for this game when I get to that stage of development.


#19

So…congrats on the release of Shieldwall Chronicles: Swords of the North yesterday…noooow…is the development of “generic name” Strike fleet still a thing? :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Maybe my google-fu is lacking but I didn’t see any new news about it.

Speaking of google-fu (going massively OT here) - I saw the release of Ancient Frontiers: Steel Shadows on steam today, which reminded me to finally get the original Ancient Frontiers, one of the few Kickstarters video games I backed (the campaign was unsuccessful but the game still released fine) which reminded me about this game…I spent about 15 minutes to find this thread, I was on the wrong track here completely and searched on pocket tactics first…

It is sure hard to keep track about such topics if there is next to no visibility because Indi devs have a hard time to get a spot in the light at all.
I remember that there was a game which had several developer updates on the old Pocket Tactics which showed a lot of promise and was very interesting to me…however it was a one-man-studio with no presence and back then I thought I will get info about the release via that thread - well, old PT gone, medium PT (PT2.0) gone as well, new PT has no archive of old threads and now I will never see the game ever again because no amount of google-fu can help with discovering traces of it.

And the off-tangent hits this thread again…be real sure to go for a distinct non-generic name in development and make it public as soon as possible…it helps with visibility and recognition especially with the size and scope we are talking here…no way I would forget about a Warcraft 4 or Diablo 4 or Guild Wars 3… Random Fleet Game XYZ however… :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


#20

Thanks! Yeah, the space fleet game is still in the works but got pushed to the back burner. The next release will probably be the next entry in the Strike Team series, called Strike Team Gladius. Then will work on the space fleet game.