It's the end of May and that means it's time to review the last 31 days of progress. It's been an interesting month for Excalibur! We haven't had a big advancement in technology, but we do have lots of little things to advance our cause.
Our recruitment drive has been a real success and we have now added a new 3D modeller to our team. We also have 7 new potential recruits currently helping us out. I'm personally hopeful that we will see them inducted as new members of the team. So, I'd like to officially welcome Abs and Gasaraki to the team and to say thanks and good luck to our current probationary teammates: Banbury, PlasmaGrass, gerbilofdoom, darkyn, michael appleby and matrix120.
Abs has put in the work to create these new models for Excalibur and the result has been these pretty awesome looking escape pods. We're still looking for someone who is willing to texture them, but these models will be included and part of the abandon ship scripts in Excalibur.
After two days of work and trawling through the star charts and Starfleet stellar cartography, we've built an index of locations to be integrated into Excalibur. The list clocks in at 639 items, spanning most of the major alpha quadrant powers and a radius of 380 light-years. This will also be more of a "remaster" of our previous starchart with some errors corrected. We will also be looking to deviate from the canon to resolve some issues that exist and to modernise the Trek Universe to advance things to the 2380s. The next step will be too add suns to these locations and finalise the structure before setting about the mammoth task of filling out 639 locations. The goal will be to create the infrastructure which are mostly Starbases and stations. You can expect seeing more of the universe over the coming months.
The shields have been technically in place for some time but we've never had direct feedback into the user interface until now. We've now finally done this using some temporary sliders. It's magic seeing the UI respond to the ingame changes.
We've recently changed the structure of the game in terms of how solar systems and locations are loaded. At the moment it is very much similar to Bridge commander in that you have the region defined and then you have locations within that region. This is mostly to get around some technical limitations of having large locations. While we could stick to a persistent solar system we have some engine difficulties which haven't been solved yet so this will allow us to work around those issues and hopefully get things moving even quicker. The good news is that the previous scripts that managed warp drive between locations still work so warp drive will be getting an overhaul this month.
We're in a good place right now. For the first time we are able to really move on developing the actual universe of the game, more locations, more planets, solar systems and starbases, and with a bit of luck some simple missions and more actual game play. Exciting times ahead.