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When Earth is attacked by a crushingly hostile fleet of unknown origin, and the Near Earth Territories are left in all but ruins, the last remaining ships carrying what is left of humanity must find a way to put aside their old disagreements and hatreds and work together to survive out in the harshness of space, pursued relentlessly by an enemy that is determined to wipe us from the face of the galaxy.

Fragile Existence is an upcoming space-based RTS/4X hybrid with survival elements that places the player in charge of the last fleet of humankind, as you travel from system to system gathering resources to keep your precious passengers and crew alive and well, whilst also building the vehicles and support vessels needed to operate ground missions to explore the planets you come across and evolve your technology to meet new threats.

Ground and Orbit

Core features

  • Full 3D solar systems, with "warp" travel between planets in straight lines and orbital insertion/exit into/from the orbital sphere around worlds to support planetary operations happening there.
  • Full 3D spherical planets with interactable ground surface and A* pathfinding. Send expeditions down to the surface to explore and find resources, build temporary support bases, fight hostile wildlife, local inhabitants and fend off the natural environment long enough to get the things the fleet needs to stay alive. And then evacuate everything you can back to the fleet via dropships.
  • Seamless interaction between the space tactical layer and the ground surface below. Ships can bombard units on the surface, and ground units can launch assaults on the fleet itself. Ships can scan the surface from orbit to map out the terrain and find the best landing spots/base locations/resources, etc.
  • Active pause lets you stop the action at any time and consider your options. Handy when you could be overseeing multiple ground excursions all through the system at the same time!
  • Tactical zoom lets you zoom in to units moving around on the ground surface or all the way out to view the entire solar system overview, with icons displaying the current tactical situation.
  • Modular units that visually show what components/weapons they are made up of. Capital ships can only perform actions depending on what modules are installed within the hull, with crew assigned to specific rooms to increase the efficiency of your preferred/required tasks/functions.
  • Physicalised inventory -- each ship maintains its own cargo space and inventory (with a fleet overview available too), so if you lose a ship you essentially lose everything it was carrying, as well as the precious few passengers/crew to boot. Support craft will move items between your fleet depending on the set import and export options per item.
  • Leader characters that represent the best and the brightest amongst the remaining population. Leaders belong to a specialisation (navy, engineer, scientist, aviation, warfare) with each role upgradable based on your chosen ideology and current needs. Leaders are needed to perform key actions, with your engineers building bases or upgrading units/ships, scientists sampling local points of interest to further research goals, etc.
  • Discovery-based research where you need to find particular items/resources in order to begin technological advances in that area. A rare plant might lead to advances in engine efficiency tech: never sample that particular plant and you will never gain those insights. Research the enemy when you get the opportunity in order to learn how they operate and begin to defend against their seemingly overwhelming advantage.
  • Empire on the move -- this may not be a traditional 4X by any means, but you still have an empire to manage, it's just one that you take with you! Keep your passengers and crew happy, maintain the loyalties of other factions aboard the fleet, and deal with any shipboard emergencies or mutinies that may arise if you start neglecting your own people.
  • The enemy never sleeps. The race is on to keep the fleet maintained and your passengers fed before the enemy fleet catches up to you. When they enter the system you will need to perform a defensive retreat whilst you finish up any current ground operations, making a choice to commit resources to keep the rest of the fleet safe as they head for one of the jump points leading to your chosen next solar system.
  • Built-in planet and solar system editor that allows a player to procedurally generate their own planets, then place ground features in order to build interesting worlds, before placing these planets in a solar system ready to be played. And eventually: node-based scripting system in-game, to support the creation of triggered events and story points.

Fleet orbital movement


Reveal trailer: [25.08.2021]



Please Wishlist Fragile Existence on Steam to support the game!

Follow the journey on Discord: Discord.gg
Website: Fragile Existence (fragilecontinuum.com)
YouTube development logs available at: Fragile Existence - YouTube
And we are on Twitter: Lee Harris (@fragileexistenz) / Twitter

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I'm excited to finally show off something resembling a decent trailer for Fragile Existence after 15 months of full-time solo development! Happy to engage with any feedback or answer any questions you might have-- thanks for dropping by, and please enjoy :)

The game is also now listed on Steam: Fragile Existence on Steam (steampowered.com) so if you like what you see please do wishlist us there to support the development!


Some screenshots from the new trailer:


Base building on a planet surface


Fleet orbital movement


Spider all up in your city yo


Fighters


Rocky planet

Hand-crafted worlds, building up the fleet, fighter craft and spider tanks

Hand-crafted worlds, building up the fleet, fighter craft and spider tanks

News 1 comment

Over a year into development, FE now has a fully-featured editor to build interactive planets which can be explored by units dropped from the fleet.

Surface scanning, prettier ships, brand new UI and dropships. Yes, dropships

Surface scanning, prettier ships, brand new UI and dropships. Yes, dropships

News

A lot can change in a month, and with 1 year of development time approaching, it was time to shift gear and bring this unique fleet survival/RTS to life.

Connecting the dots: Interplanetary travel

Connecting the dots: Interplanetary travel

News

Starting from the system warp-in point, you're probably going to need to move your fleet from world to world if you're going to get very far in FE...

Populating the fleet: Characters, skills & crew

Populating the fleet: Characters, skills & crew

News 1 comment

Taking a look at the inner workings of the ships in the fleet, where your senior staff learn skills in order to enable functionality and direct the crew.

Comments  (0 - 10 of 25)
CharlieOscar-27
CharlieOscar-27

Looks very promising! Keeping my eye on this one:) But you already knew that haha

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mazioman
mazioman

I'm a simple man. I smell Battlestar vibes, I support a project. Hope this turns out well.

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LeeHarris Creator
LeeHarris

I can relate to that :d Thanks for the support!

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C.Konstantine
C.Konstantine

Hello again Lee, and yes I'm still following this closely, it seems my instincts served me well, you are progressing steadily and the game itself already has me intrigued.

Cruisers and Frigates you say? my interest just shot up as I love (and excel) in the use of smaller classes of ships in these type of games. Do your Frigates also stand in for Destroyers or will that be a class of its own? Have you considered "strike carrier" and "assault carrier" as designations rather than "support carrier"? (The name would be more action oriented and perhaps even menacing?)

And now the ground units...what a delight. One of my all time favorite games is Imperium Galactica 2. It is one of the few space based games where ground battles and assaults are truly fleshed out, with several units available for a player to deploy, each with its own strengths and weaknesses . It is wonderful to see that you aren't treating this aspect of the game as an afterthought.


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LeeHarris Creator
LeeHarris

Yeah, I kinda skipped the dev log last month and did the 12 month of dev thing instead, but I'm still working away at it! Glad to hear that I'm not doing anything too wrong yet ;)
Well, do you think Destroyers are really needed? Most of the present-day classifications barely make sense in space as it is, so I thought I was being generous with Frigates being the lightest of the capital class, and the Cruiser being a more substantial non-carrier (and I realise there's arguments against space carriers in general, but meh, I want carriers). Assault carrier would probably fit from a purely-militaristic standpoint, but in the lore of the game-world, these kind of vessels were more tailored for peacekeeping operations than large scale invasion. And the name suits their re-purposed role as ground operation coordinators, I think.

The entire concept of FE revolves around seamless interaction between the space and ground tactical layers, so of course I'm going to try and make the most of that! Any semi-realistic recommendations for ground units would certainly be welcome too :)

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LeeHarris Creator
LeeHarris

Hi :)

For those interested in finding out more, the Discord community server can be found over at Discord.gg
And the YouTube channel can be found at Youtube.com

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C.Konstantine
C.Konstantine

I'm still observing this with great interest, I like how the concept is evolving.

About your latest update, three comments

Working on the eye candy is a plus, while I personally would play it if it were Xs and Os as long as it had a good AI and solid concept, players today focus a lot on looks

The scan system. I like that you are going with a different and more detailed approach, but will reserve final judgement as It must not become repetitive or a chore. It shouldn't be an issue, but will most likely be contingent on how many times a player has to scan in a session and the duration of each scan.

Drop ships. Good move. Keep it realistic Lee, like an assault ship uses helicopters and landing craft for amphibious invasions. Plausibility is a big key in my opinion, drop ships, support carriers, etc add to that... which leads to more immersion.

Nice update overall, I continue to cheer for your success

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LeeHarris Creator
LeeHarris

Hi again :)

The scanning mechanic was intended to be on the more passive side of gameplay-- you add the relevant scan component to the ship and it draws power whilst active but generally just scans everything in a region below the ship whilst it moves around. You can turn it off if you need power for other stuff. One way or another the game is largely about exploring planets to get resources to keep surviving, so it amounts to just a slightly more involved fog of war than anything particularly revolutionary :d

I'm actually working on fleet carry-able ground base modules that can be similarly dropped to the surface and picked up again when evacuating. That's a detour from anything BSG ever did (they only had tents on the algae planet?), but if we're exploring lots of planets I think I need to give players a sense of progression, with upgradeable modules that they want to survive an evacuation rather than completely expendable bases.

The logistics of getting an adequately equipped expedition down to a planet surface and back up again at a later point is perhaps one of the more interesting aspects of the game, I think. With only a handful of dropships available and requests to be ferried around queuing up, it'll be fun to oversee and support an emergency evacuation and such...

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C.Konstantine
C.Konstantine

"I think I need to give players a sense of progression, with upgradeable modules that they want to survive an evacuation rather than completely expendable bases"
An expendable resource then that a player has to consider if the risks are worth it. Good move, adds to immersion by bringing a little tension into something many games treat as an afterthought...(or no thought at all)

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C.Konstantine
C.Konstantine

Like clockwork, I was just thinking that you are about due for an update, and there you are, it is quite encouraging to see your level of commitment.
As an added bonus, not only do I get to follow your progress, but you are also giving some pointers as to why you are taking certain decisions, I feel like I'm in class, lol.
Nice update Lee, I think once you get close to release, you should contact Explorminate (or I can).

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LeeHarris Creator
LeeHarris

Well, I was a science teacher for a while... but I'd like to think I've left that life behind by now :D

I have been slowly building up a list of 'youtubers' that might be interested in having a look at the project once its further along (i.e. pre-alpha demo stage) and Explorminate is on that list (though I think it's a slight stretch to classify FE as a conventional 4X: we certainly expand outwards but we don't retain our holdings for the duration of the game, so I don't know...)

I'd be happy to hear about any other recommended content creators, but it's still fairly early days so no rush :)

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Twitter

Latest tweets from @fragileexistenz

Still needs decal detailing & cloud formations, but after much iteration, spherical worlds are starting to look pre… T.co

Nov 24 2021

Testing out some nebula-like volumetric effects. Promising start! #gaming #gameplay #strategygame #indiegameT.co

Nov 17 2021

Building bases on the dark side of planets relies on placing lamps and other light sources to illuminate the area.… T.co

Nov 13 2021

Dradis contacts! (testing out a fleet scanning concept) #gaming #gameplay #indieGameDev #space #scifiT.co

Nov 12 2021

Landing an expeditionary force on the dark side of an uninhabited (?) planet, making good use of unit real-time lig… T.co

Nov 2 2021

Upgraded the project to Unity 2021.2 (yeah, risky!) & switched to deferred rendering. Pretty happy with how things… T.co

Nov 1 2021

Thanks to @GamerZakh for including FE in his 30 New Upcoming PC STRATEGY Games in 2022 & 2023 ► Best RTS, 4X & Base… T.co

Oct 17 2021

Latest Fragile Existence development diary is now available on YT. Featuring new height-map based terrain engine, b… T.co

Oct 6 2021

RT @StutterFox: Check out the latest Falling Frontier trailer, big thanks to @IGN for covering it! Ign.com

Sep 24 2021