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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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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.

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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!

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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.

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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

StarDiver: Planetary Landing

StarDiver: Planetary Landing

1 year ago News 2 comments

We are happy to share our first videos of planetary landing! Drop down onto any of the planets in the StarDiver game universe to hunt for alien life...

StarDiver: Orbital Battles and More

StarDiver: Orbital Battles and More

1 year ago News 4 comments

This week we have quite a bit to share with you all from the addition of Orbital battles, Mass Driver kill, Slow Motion direct hits, and a tech demo of...

StarDiver - Ship to Ship Damage System

StarDiver - Ship to Ship Damage System

1 year ago News 2 comments

Ships are now fully destructible. The damage modeling system supports per-ship-part damage fx, venting atmosphere, debris, ship parts being knocked off...

Character Rigging Toolchain

Character Rigging Toolchain

1 year ago News 1 comment

We have been trying to cut down on our workflow for character animation since we have 20+ alien races to make multiple animations for. I thought I'd share...

Post comment Comments  (0 - 10 of 24)
Doci May 16 2015 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
Guest May 12 2015 says:

I would Love To see this done, But this game needs advertisement. You could try getting some popularity up with youtubers, For example EnterElysium Has some viewers (About 10 thousands on average) And getting a comment on his vids linked to some photos may attract his (And his fans) Attention on this game. Of course getting larger youtubers to show your game would be more difficult, But you really need advertisement On a popular place to get known. And I know you wouldn't pay for advertisement I think.

+1 vote     reply to comment
friken0 Creator
friken0 May 18 2015 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 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.


Thanks in advance for any feedback you can give :)

+1 vote   reply to comment
friken0 Creator
friken0 Apr 30 2015 replied:

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


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 May 16 2015 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 May 16 2015 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 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
Tsukiyoarts Nov 30 2014 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 Nov 11 2014 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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