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An indie game project with the goal of reviving our favorite game type, the epic space adventure! By mixing favorite aspects of classics like StarFlight, Star Control, SunDog, Universe, and Tradewars, we hope to bring what we loved as kids to the current generation. Quirky aliens, arcade space battles, planetary mining, and adventure around the galaxy -- should keep us busy developing for a while. The project is a family affair, Wife on art, son on music, and code-monkeying by me. We are currently in early development for the PC,Mac,Linux platforms... XboxOne or PS4 if we can swing it.

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Blog RSS Feed Post news Report abuse Latest News: StarDiver - New Weapons and Ship AI

5 comments by friken0 on Apr 30th, 2015

While StarDiver is a story-first RPG, ship combat is a core game mechanic. So a good AI is a big deal to us! It is truly a make or break for the game. We have now completed the AIs for two or the 25 unique ships in the game. We have many more to go, but it is crazy fun to both fight the AI and even to watch the AI fight another AI.

User Posted Image

For those not familiar with StarDiver gameplay, ships offer direct, arcade-like controls -- no boring RTS movement here! It also features a finely tuned physics and damage system. Ships parts can be blown off. Lose a right engine and your remaining left engine will offer asymetric thrust. Lose a right turning thruster and you better get good at only turning left. We have spent countless hours getting our control system tweaked so that game controllers, mouse-keyboard, or keyboard-only all feel excellent and responsive. So, what does this mean to making a good AI? It means it is quite a bit more difficult!

User Posted Image

The AI system needed to simulate player inputs. If a player can't do it with the controller, neither can the AI. With our physics and damage systems, the only way to keep it all feeling 'right' was to create the AI code to simulate controller inputs based on what is currently going on in the battle. No small feat, but we did it.

User Posted Image

Setting a test scene up with two AI ships and watching them duke it out was pretty rewarding. After tuning the Krex and Benev AIs a bit, the Benev won 6 out of 10 battles. Pretty even AIs!

The gifs inline are great and all, but for the full splendor of it, watch our 1080p/60fps full battle videos below.

Krex AI vs Benev AI

Krex AI vs Krex AI

Benev AI vs Benev AI

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Post comment Comments  (0 - 10 of 24)
Doci
Doci May 16 2015, 2:00pm says:

Man man this game is getting better and better !!
Sorry that i am a little of the board but im studying hard D`:
Keep it up :D !!

+2 votes     reply to comment
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Guest May 12 2015, 1:57am says:

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friken0 Creator
friken0 May 18 2015, 5:15pm replied:

Good suggestion. We will be starting to reach out to youtubers and such when we have a playable mini-segment of the game. We hope to include solar navigation, conversing w aliens, planet mining and combat -- so the player gets a good feel of how the game will play beyond just combat.

+1 vote   reply to comment
friken0 Creator
friken0 Apr 30 2015, 8:21pm says:

Hi All,

I would love to get some feedback on controls and AI. Please note this is a combat only build, not the full game, and still quite early. It is also set for GAME-CONTROLLER controls by default. HOLD DOWN FIRE for long range shots.

To change controls.

(default controls are setup for a game controller)

F1 (Alt F1 for IE browsers) for keyboard only (wasd and >? or arrowkeys and zx)

F2 Mouse and Keyboard (ship rotates to mouse cursor. arrow keys or wasd to thrust/strafe

Since this is out of context and in the full game you would learn to pilot ships slowly, the difficultly will likely seem quite high. The AI in this build is in difficuly mode, and is a faily difficult ship. If you die just refresh the browser page to retry.

Controls of your ship. Movement w/ left stick of controller (or mouse/kb as noted above). Button 1 will fire 3 side flak cannons. Hold that fire button down until you want to detonate the warheads. Steer the warheads during flight with the left stick. Button 2 fires a forward pulse weapon. It will repel the enemy and do a good bit of damage. It can also be used to deflect enemy lighting attacks. Strafe with the top shoulder buttons. Engine boost with bottom shoulder buttons (drains energy very quickly).

Note this game is targeting Xbox1, PS4, and Steam, not a webbrowser. Web-builds are just easy to get feedback on. I know they are not ideal.

Gravityride.com

Thanks in advance for any feedback you can give :)

+1 vote   reply to comment
friken0 Creator
friken0 Apr 30 2015, 8:21pm replied:

If anyone wants to have a go at controlling the Benev against the Krex AI ship:

Gravityride.com

For added fun, I left on the planet procedural debug mode. hit f12 (or ALT f12 in IE) to randomly generate a new planet. If you are playing the last build w/ a gas giant F11 randomly generates a new gas giant.

+1 vote   reply to comment
Doci
Doci May 16 2015, 2:10pm replied:

Really Cool !!
I love the way it flies !
ahm but the ship you fly is a bit overpowered :DD you dont need to aim ;p

+2 votes     reply to comment
Doci
Doci May 16 2015, 2:13pm replied:

ok ok it isnt that op ^^
it really depends on your skill fighting the green one :D
If you get in front of it you are damned ^^

I love the slow motion when you get hit !!

+2 votes     reply to comment
friken0 Creator
friken0 May 18 2015, 5:13pm replied:

Thx for the feedback. I'm saving most difficulty balancing until we have all the ships in the game. There will be overly powerful ships on purpose for the key races in the game who are more advanced and integral to the story arc.

+2 votes   reply to comment
Tsukiarts
Tsukiarts Nov 30 2014, 3:29pm says:

I liked how you mentioned it is a family produced game, this is very unique. Wish you the best luck on your project.

+2 votes     reply to comment
AlfredoTheSpectre
AlfredoTheSpectre Nov 11 2014, 2:47pm says:

Cool, looks almost like Space Pirates and Zombies. ;)

But seriously, I love those backgrounds and the Art-Style.

Hope we will see more of that, so keep it up!

+3 votes     reply to comment
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StarDiver
Platforms
Windows, Mac, Linux, XONE, PS4
Developer
GravityRide, LLC.
Engine
Unity
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Official Page
Gravityride.com
Release Date
TBD
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Role Playing
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Jun 5 2015, 3:05pm

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May 28 2015, 1:20pm

#StarDiver #screenshots for #E3 promotional material. Exciting times! #indiedev #gamedev T.co

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May 18 2015, 4:58pm

#StarDiver Wisperela.... if mutant #pacman #ghosts were an alien race... #gamedev #indiedev T.co

May 12 2015, 3:53pm

@Seriously_Web @stardiver My biased opinion agrees ;)

May 11 2015, 3:56pm

Opinions, FX or None? NoFX: T.co All-FX:: T.co Vignette: T.co #indiedev #gamedev

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#Stardiver ditching the BIG-UI-small-viewscreen to nearly fullscreen. #gamedev #indiedev T.co

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RT @screenshotdaily: StarDiver, space opera developed by one family @GravityRide_ T.co #screenshotsaturday #gamedev htt…

May 9 2015, 11:59am

@screenshotdaily @GravityRide_ slightly biased here, but cool game ;)

May 9 2015, 11:58am

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