New game

Mar. 29th, 2016 10:22 pm
pyraxis: Pyraxis (Pyraxis)
We discovered a new game at GDC that's been my addiction for the past few evenings. It's Niche, a genetic survival game that's sort of a cross between SimLife and Watership Down. You start with Adam and Eve, a pair of little foxlike creatures that don't have an official name yet, and you have to breed your people into a whole tribe while exploring their territory, finding food, and fending off carnivores and illness.

It's made by a small group of people from Switzerland, an indie team, and it's still in the very early stages. They've been Steam greenlit but haven't started a Kickstarter yet, and the publically available build of the game is still a demo version that you can't save. I shut down my computer every night because it has a really loud fan, so I've been obsessively playing the beginning of the game every evening but rarely making it past generation 10 or so.

At GDC they had a little stall and they were running a contest where if you could breed your little tribe to ten members, you would get on the list for a free early access key when they get that far. We are on the list. :) If you join their Facebook playtester's group, you can get a bleeding-edge recent version of the build which is better balanced than the public demo.

The best part about it is it's turn-based. And it has nothing to do with war. It's rare to find a good turn-based strategy game that's not about nation vs nation.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
I got to try this game at GDC. Habitat: An Orbital Strategy Game.

After Earth fell to some kind of global catastrophe, humanity is struggling to survive on floating habitats built from space debris in orbit. It's a building game where you have to collect and cobble together space junk, attach engines, and attempt to supply your people with enough oxygen, electricity and food to survive.

It's a really unique game mechanic. It has a realistic zero-g physics simulator, so navigating around is a slightly tortuous process of firing an engine on one side of your capsule, starting to spin, firing the engine on the other side to counterbalance the spin, and carefully, through short bursts of power, controlling your navigation. You have to turn around backwards and fire the rockets in the opposite direction to stop. I like the feel of it. It moves at a slow enough pace that me and my bad reflexes, which clasically fail at most RTS games, can actually get somewhere.

I like as well the idea of scavenging and constructing a proper colony from the bits of planes, satellites, and apparently part of the head of the Statue of Liberty that humanity has left behind. (How the Statue of Liberty ended up in orbit, I have no idea...) There can be combat between one group of survivors and another, but it's completely optional, and rather than guns, it mainly involves propelling bits of debris at the other guys and trying to break their structures apart. There's an air of fragility about the junk creations that feels like a refreshing change from games where you blast the crap out of anything that moves, taking utterly unrealistic amounts of damage without slowing down.

Anyway the point of all this is that they have a Kickstarter here. They're ten days in, looking for $50k to bring the game out by next Christmas. They're developing for Mac and Linux as well as PC. Please support them if you're so inclined. I think this game could be really awesome.
pyraxis: Lin (Lin)
So much to write about. Pages and pages and pages of notes.

First things first, because everything else hinges on this.

Monetizing cristal.

Cristal being the same thing as in crystal kifu. After sitting through a presentation on Final Fantasy: Crystal Mythos solely because of the name, and getting blasted by its teeth-grinding sugar high artwork, I cannot talk about “crystal” with a straight face.

The ethics of monetizing cristal. )

I will go ahead with my plans to channel cristal, unless I receive radical new information that proves it to be a bad idea. However I invite discussion from anybody who has something to say.
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