We love open-space free-to-do-anything kind of games. Remember Elite, Frontier, First Encounters, Privateer, Freelancer? That's what we're talking about. What we want to do is bring the best from these games – idea and playability – and enrich it with large scale economy, multiple joinable and createable factions, top-notch branching storyline and massive explorable and conquerable space. We want all that with a slick, easy to use interface with ship > fleet > station management and both arcade and tactical combat elements. And... all that on iPhone/iPad, Android and PC platforms.
Our team consists of people who enjoyed late night gaming sessions with their Commodore 64, Amiga and Atari computers. Games back in the day were made with one paramount concept – playability. Programmers managed to accomplish unbelieveable feats – put a whole galaxy on one floppy disk and wrap a functional combat and trading game around it using realistic physics and 3D graphics. Tribute to David Braben. And all that on a computer that was more than a thousand times slower compared to every day machines on our desks today.
So why do games today have only a fraction of playability and almost no RE-playability? Did developers become too lazy? We don't think so. And we're here to prove that point!
A neverending dream
Years have gone by and with some exceptions there have been no attempts to recreate that beautiful sence of open space and endless possibilities. None of them succeeded to meet my standards. They all had their shortcommings and design flaws. The player was always restricted in some way – either by the linear storytelling, by predefined gamespace or something else.
So, it's time for us to wake up and give the gaming comunity a product so full with choices and yet so intuitive and simple to understand, ease to immerse into – just like real life.
When we discussed how much money would we need to bring the game to a finnished state there were several key aspects we considered. First of all, we defined the features the game had to have in order to be playable on a level that we wanted. And with frequent brainstorms, we really had a lot of ideas for various features that we want to integrate in the game. To complete the project in a reasonable time we need funds. Lots of funds. Here's what we want to do.
Freedom and immersion
- vast hand made galaxy with a large number of systems (and growing) that adhere to general principles of planetary and system creation
- al least 5 races with different ideologies + pirates (different tactics in combat ranging from passive and defensive to full blown agressive)
- space stations with various specialties – trade ports, production structures, command centers with defensive and offencive capabilities
- living and breathing economy with production, demand – find those golden supply routes
- minimum of 50 commodities for free and black market exchange
- dark side of the galaxy with piracy, black market and various criminal activities
- factions a player can join or work for
- factions a player can create and manage
- relations with factions based on your actions – limiting access and changing behaviour
- plausable background story with story-driven missions, characters and events
- available missions created dinamically based on world events (commodity shortaga will give transport options, repressed systems bring assasination or smuggling missions etc.)
- be a fighter, trader, pirate, assasin...
- a minimum of 20 ship models covering all classess (fighter, frigate, corvette, dreadnought, battleship) for each 5 races (pirates use modified versions of existing models) – so 100 100 ship designs at least
- ship upgrades, equipment, weapons, shields, defences
- realtime space travel (with warp capabilities for covering large distances)
- fleet management (based on current level)
- crew morale, relationships, allocation (elements of ship management)
- crew recruitment and training – as well as field experience and promotions
- intership communications – hireing, trading, threatning etc.
- bounty system (place bounties on enemies or hunt for profit)
- join or create factions
- manage faction members within your rank permissions
- award member actions with respect points
- review applying members, award promotions based on respect points earned
- three distinct fighting modes (personal choice)
- first person ship control (can control main ship and give orders to others)
- tactical view (watch the battle and give out orders)
- auto-battle (quick-simulate based on ship and crew stats – and some luck)
- mid actions commands (attack, guard, retreat...)
- HQ voice-over pilot chatter based on situation
Persistant universe and MMO features
- a live and evolving universe filled with all sorts of characters and organisations
- market prices and commodity availability based on real world economy principles
- persistant inter-faction conflicts and dominance charts
- regional and world leaderboards – both combat ratings and reputation based
- head-to-head PvP dueling system (mobile vs mobile and desktop vs desktop)
- in later builds we will bring full freedom multiplayer capability
Now you are probably overwhelmed with so many planned features but that is what will make this game so great. Out plan is to make regular releases with new features every few weeks so the everyone will be able to see the progress we've made.
We have been working on Ad Infinitum full time for just about a month. In that time, we have been focused on getting the game's core systems and features up and running. The earlier the game is playable, the more time we have to tune and get it balanced properly.
So far we managed to clear up some stuff from our check list.
- in space controls, environment
- most of the game artificial intelligence requires only some final touches
- core systems are almost completely designed
- low polygon ships used as placeholders
Until now, we have become proficient with 3D programming and we're capable of delivering content for various platforms including PC, iOS, Android and MacOS. Linux and Xbox360 are alse on the table but that is something that will be within our grasp if we manage to hit some of our stretch goals.
The initial release of Ad Infinitum is targeted for the PC and iOS. Our code base is flexible and could be branched to Mac, Linux, as well as consoles. But due to the expense of porting a game like this, this will happen after the success or the PC and iOS versiona.
Our plan is to start putting working versions to our backers for review during the winter. Then go alpha during spring time, then hit beta early summer and finally release the game to public late summer of 2013.
You can do several things to help us. Here are some suggestions :
- Talk about our project to people that might be interested by it
- Send us feedbacks about the project, the campaign, anything you think that may be usefull to share with us.
- Follow us on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/AdInfinitumGame)
Please, by all means, spread the love and share this page with your friends/co-workers/future spaceship captains!
Thank you so much!