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Author Topic: A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike  (Read 1110 times)

ChrisLeJohn

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A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« on: November 14, 2018, 05:18:15 pm »

The stasis chamber hisses softly around you. Artificial fluids built up inside your ears begin to retreat as the cryoplasm drains slowly.  Breathing comes naturally, at first. And then the tickle of a hundred nanites filtering your oxygen forces a cough or two of surprise. Beneath new skin a fresh infusion of blood pulses with the cadence tribal drums. Your thoughts cascade and it all makes sense again. You open your eyes to the dull interior of a starship.


Various small icons flicker to life in your peripherals.  Location, vitals, people?  You look around and see no one. But can tell by the social activity in your skinfeed that there are others, both near and worlds apart.  In your ears, a local A.I chimes in softly with an introduction to the ships systems, emergency protocols, lunch menu and array of ordnance.  A voyagers handbook has been allocated space and stored in your read-only memory.  Its short description reads : This is your voyage.


So Apsis Online is a classic RL in a sense that the game operates entirely within the command line with the environment being presented in ASCII and each planet and landing site visited by players being procedurally generated. Similar to the usual dungeon mechanics so common in this genre. Combat is currently not the focus but will generally be a real-time/turn-based hybrid inspired by TomeNET and should lend well to how I plan to handle conflicts on a larger scale in the future.


The engine uses a combination of real-time features to handle things like chat and animations (if you can call them that), making the world feel a lot more alive. Having a built in forum and social system was part of an idea to have a self-sufficient platform for players to operate in as well. I went into a lot more detail in the devblog for version 1 if interested.

The game has been very recently ported to Windows (64-bit for now) with the current server being very much a test server. I'll need to work out a way to get something more proper than a shared VPS if I'm going to re-enable things like chat which badly clogs up precious bandwidth. Forget it if there are multiple users on one ship.  So these features are temporarily disabled. There are plans to allow email verifications pretty soon which should allow for some fun in-game perks once I get a small digital store going.  Thanks for reading, you can find the game:

on itch.io

First Paradise Wiki

« Last Edit: March 22, 2019, 09:00:21 pm by ChrisLeJohn »
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ChrisLeJohn

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2019, 03:35:29 am »

V2 has been released for Windows.  This build hasn't really been tested outside of my dev machine so feel free to drop your issues under bug reports, or whatever it's called, in the in-game forum.  Full recap on the process of developing V2 can be found here.  The actual release was a month ago but was restricted to Linux.  Special shout out to people pointing out any issues as well as the one crash that occurred (patched!).

This latest version simply lays the groundwork for building structures as well as exploration via the "embark" mechanic for post-landings. It also builds on existing features like broken ship engines.  Now that the initial test is over you can now fix them and be on your merry way. I'm generally pretty limited resource-wise so both the Linux and Windows binaries are currently only 64-bit compatible. Which flies in the face of what I originally set out to do with this engine but I do have what sounds like a lawnmower that I could try to get another compile on.  I had this covered in V1 but the broader the compatability is the longer it will take to get that deep layer of hardware support.  Working on it!

Shouts out to MassivelyOP for the mention this month. Next up, V3.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2019, 04:33:05 am by ChrisLeJohn »
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ukulele

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2019, 02:56:51 pm »

Surprised this went unnoticed, seems really interesting ill be giving it a try!
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quinnr

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2019, 12:32:12 am »

This seems interesting, posting to support / watch!
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George_Chickens

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2019, 01:21:07 am »

Sounds awesome. Will definitely check this out when I upgrade to a more stable connection.
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ChrisLeJohn

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2019, 12:28:17 pm »

Much appreciated! Feel free to throw out some ideas too. This project was one of those “engine first” situations and was a tually never supposed to turn into a game. It was a big experiment in writing a social layer for an older existing engine.  So that got repurposed and here we are.

New patch incoming. I still need to optimize for windows a bit, backspacing and warping seems to be a bit funky at times.  It could be the default terminal (it definitely is its fault) but I haven’t run too many tests yet.
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Retropunch

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2019, 11:54:18 am »

Much appreciated! Feel free to throw out some ideas too. This project was one of those “engine first” situations and was a tually never supposed to turn into a game. It was a big experiment in writing a social layer for an older existing engine.  So that got repurposed and here we are.

New patch incoming. I still need to optimize for windows a bit, backspacing and warping seems to be a bit funky at times.  It could be the default terminal (it definitely is its fault) but I haven’t run too many tests yet.

This sounds absolutely fantastic, and exactly the sort of thing I've been looking for. I know that you've said combat won't be a big focus, and I think that's great - there are tons of combat RLs but few that really manage to do space exploration/4x/etc.

In terms of ideas I've got two at the moment:
I think it'd be great if you could do a lot of ship tinkering. The more you're able to make the ship 'yours' the better - with this I'm not really meaning in terms of re-configuring the layout of the ship, but more in terms of configuring the internals.

A 'translation' mechanic for chat/etc. could be cool. If the Voyagers could start off as different clans/races/etc. you could start off only being able to talk to your 'clan' over chat/forums. You could then have an in game way of getting access to others - that might be through NMS style 'learning' or building translators etc. Obviously you'd need a number of people playing for it to be worthwhile, but I think it'd be a great way of giving an early goal to players.

As an aside, will tiles ever be possible? I'm an ASCII fan, but I'm thinking long term some tile support would go along way to getting more people interested. No problem if not, but if it's something you can build in, I'd really recommend it.
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ChrisLeJohn

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2019, 03:09:07 pm »


This sounds absolutely fantastic, and exactly the sort of thing I've been looking for. I know that you've said combat won't be a big focus, and I think that's great - there are tons of combat RLs but few that really manage to do space exploration/4x/etc.

In terms of ideas I've got two at the moment:
I think it'd be great if you could do a lot of ship tinkering. The more you're able to make the ship 'yours' the better - with this I'm not really meaning in terms of re-configuring the layout of the ship, but more in terms of configuring the internals.

A 'translation' mechanic for chat/etc. could be cool. If the Voyagers could start off as different clans/races/etc. you could start off only being able to talk to your 'clan' over chat/forums. You could then have an in game way of getting access to others - that might be through NMS style 'learning' or building translators etc. Obviously you'd need a number of people playing for it to be worthwhile, but I think it'd be a great way of giving an early goal to players.

As an aside, will tiles ever be possible? I'm an ASCII fan, but I'm thinking long term some tile support would go along way to getting more people interested. No problem if not, but if it's something you can build in, I'd really recommend it.

I don't have a problem saying I'd even like to replicate some of the best things done in ASCII Sector as well as Prosprector for good measure.  Those guys did much better design prep than me so feedback like yours is invaluable. I'm not sure what happened but at some point I got uncreative. Still, hell if I can add anything to this game.

There was an AO-specific podcast from a few years ago (before the actual game existed!) I did with a friend who was around for the initial idea. And we actually did discuss ship module customization in some detail. Although that would entail the layout itself.  I definitely want to touch on customization overall, but funny enough I think it will begin with being able to add and remove modules.  If you want to help work on the internals, you're hired!

A translation mechanic would be cool and wouldn't even be that hard based on how the engine already processing input/output.  Races will be added pretty soon, clans/guilds will probably be corps but I feel like that's too generic. But again, ya'll tell me.


As far as tiles go it's definitely possible.  A mobile reskin has been in the pipes as well.  Thanks for the feedback! And no seriously if you or anyone wants to see a feature in the game just post it somewhere and I'll probably see it and add it to the list (needs to be updated).
« Last Edit: February 25, 2019, 07:55:51 pm by ChrisLeJohn »
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Retropunch

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2019, 04:24:59 pm »


This sounds absolutely fantastic, and exactly the sort of thing I've been looking for. I know that you've said combat won't be a big focus, and I think that's great - there are tons of combat RLs but few that really manage to do space exploration/4x/etc.

In terms of ideas I've got two at the moment:
I think it'd be great if you could do a lot of ship tinkering. The more you're able to make the ship 'yours' the better - with this I'm not really meaning in terms of re-configuring the layout of the ship, but more in terms of configuring the internals.

A 'translation' mechanic for chat/etc. could be cool. If the Voyagers could start off as different clans/races/etc. you could start off only being able to talk to your 'clan' over chat/forums. You could then have an in game way of getting access to others - that might be through NMS style 'learning' or building translators etc. Obviously you'd need a number of people playing for it to be worthwhile, but I think it'd be a great way of giving an early goal to players.

As an aside, will tiles ever be possible? I'm an ASCII fan, but I'm thinking long term some tile support would go along way to getting more people interested. No problem if not, but if it's something you can build in, I'd really recommend it.

I don't have a problem saying I'd even like to replicate some of the best things done in ASCII Sector as well as Prosprector for good measure.  Those guys did much better design prep than me so feedback like yours is invaluable. I'm not sure what happened but at some point I got uncreative. Still, hell if I can add anything to this game.

There was an AO-specific podcast from a few years ago (before the actual game existed!) I did with a friend who was around for the initial idea. And we actually did discuss ship module customization in some detail. Althought that would entail the layout itself.  I definitely want to touch on customization overall, but funny enough I think it will begin with being able to add and remove modules.  If you want to help work on the internals, you're hired!

A translation mechanic would be cool and wouldn't even be that hard based on how the engine already processing input/output.  Races will be added pretty soon, clans/guilds will probably be corps but I feel like that's too generic. But again, ya'll tell me.


As far as tiles go it's definitely possible.  A mobile reskin has been in the pipes as well.  Thanks for the feedback! And no seriously if you or anyone wants to see a feature in the game just post it somewhere and I'll probably see it and check the list (needs to be updated).

Really awesome to see how open you are to ideas. I think this is one of the things that everyone has been wanting for a long time, so I'm sure you'll get a lot of support and feedback.

Re: Ship customisation; Adding and taking away modules/layout is great as well, and any internal stuff wouldn't need to be anything fancy, but just something where you can do something like, say, boost engine power at the cost of durability etc.

Re: Translations; I think corps are fine - it doesn't need to be anything too groundbreaking. In fact, it may be better to keep it as something that everyone can get their heads around so that they understand what they are joining up to.

Knowing that tiles is possible is fantastic news - I know so many people that are just automatically turned off by ASCII and it's a shame when games just can't reach a larger audience because the engine they've used is stuck in ASCII. In terms of feedback, I'd honestly consider making that something of a priority - you'll get a lot of people on this forum saying that it doesn't matter, but elsewhere it really will. As it's a multiplayer game, the key is reaching that larger audience as otherwise things like corps etc. won't really work.
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ChrisLeJohn

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Re: Apsis Online - A Niche Multiplayer Roguelike
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2019, 01:42:30 pm »

I'll follow up on V3 over the weekend.  In the meantime here's a new devplay (part 2) going over some of the features present in V2.  Thanks!
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