Discussion Thread! (was What's Coming Soon™)

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Discussion Thread! (was What's Coming Soon™)

Postby Xveers on Fri 23 Oct 2009 17:29

Well, first off I want to apologize. School takes priority and so Starfire is forced onto a back burner. Which sucks. But that's not to say NOTHING is coming.

So, what IS coming soon?

Well, a couple things :)

I'm working on:
- Full set of Universe Guide booklets that shed a bit of light on all the major empires (hopefully including some of the various player races that are in there as well...)
- Fleet Booklets that show the various designs that each navy has fielded, even if they have not seen combat. This also includes some theoretical designs that were built as testbeds and then scrapped
- A Scenario Booklet that covers the first deWulf-Sintillan war (in the same theme as Stars at War and Crusade).
- A proper PDF copy of the deWulf Empire up to turn 88 or so.
- Updated new-style system maps (thanks to Fractal Mapper 8)
- All of these are going to have some better art, moreso than my craptastic MS Paint style stuff. Not "I lifted this from a website somewhere" art either... :D

Plus working to get my storyline up to the next big "arc" as it were. Right now it's at the end of the "Binary War" in the Kalmazoo system (gotta rename that thing...). The last big battle has been fought and at least roughed out in writing, and it's on turn 90. The next arc after that starts off with a bang, and we're going to get to see the deWulf start to lean into full military production. Plus the beginning of multi-front wars. About damn time.

I'm also trying to get some of my other players to start writing stuff up so I can post it here as well, so then you can see some of the other madness (one of my PRs has had some insane luck with remnant units and berserkers... which has led to some interesting results and a hefty dose of paranoia on his part).
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Re: What's Coming Soon™

Postby Cralis on Mon 26 Oct 2009 14:25

Xveers wrote:Well, first off I want to apologize. School takes priority and so Starfire is forced onto a back burner. Which sucks. But that's not to say NOTHING is coming.


Please don't apologize! I completely understand and I'm pretty sure everyone else does as well. I am behind on my updates for the main site because I am also a student at a university.

- A Scenario Booklet that covers the first deWulf-Sintillan war (in the same theme as Stars at War and Crusade).


Oh wow. I can't wait to see this. There hasn't been a good scenario book for any version of STARFIRE in a long time. This would be a great thing to make available as a 3rd-party download!

- Updated new-style system maps (thanks to Fractal Mapper 8)


How does this differ from the maps people have made already?

- All of these are going to have some better art, moreso than my craptastic MS Paint style stuff. Not "I lifted this from a website somewhere" art either... :D


Heh, did you get someone to do art for you? That is something I'm trying to figure out for the TSU history as well...

I'm also trying to get some of my other players to start writing stuff up so I can post it here as well, so then you can see some of the other madness (one of my PRs has had some insane luck with remnant units and berserkers... which has led to some interesting results and a hefty dose of paranoia on his part).


I have to admit that I didn't know you had other players in the game. That is just awesome. Your work is inspiring some ideas for mine :-)
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Re: What's Coming Soon™

Postby Xveers on Mon 26 Oct 2009 21:22

Cralis wrote:
- A Scenario Booklet that covers the first deWulf-Sintillan war (in the same theme as Stars at War and Crusade).


Oh wow. I can't wait to see this. There hasn't been a good scenario book for any version of STARFIRE in a long time. This would be a great thing to make available as a 3rd-party download!


Yeah. It's pretty much done. I just need to get some free time to spend an afternoon on Blender and whip up a few more basic designs (need to finish on my deWulf destroyer, and do a generic orbital space station) and then it'll pretty much be done. Also need to finish off the Data Annex for it (ship designs and star system data) but that's an hour's work or so to complete and format.

Cralis wrote:
- Updated new-style system maps (thanks to Fractal Mapper 8)


How does this differ from the maps people have made already?


Well, they differ for me because I used much better software to actually make the maps. I was previously using AutoREALM to make the maps, and far before that MS Paint. While functional, AutoREALMS had a lot of annoying little features (like asking for confirmations on ANYTHING that gets done) and it didn't like a lot of more complicated images. It also had a really bad method of importing images from other programs. Also, dumping the map out to a basic Jpeg was a nightmare where you guestimated the dimensions of the picture and prayed you got a good resolution in the final result.

As a basic note, this is an AutoRealms map http://xveers.deviantart.com/art/Navigation-Map-2-deWulf-Core-100944061 and this is the same map done up in Fractal Mapper 8 http://xveers.deviantart.com/art/deWulf-Universe-deWulf-Core-141555763. As you can see, it's prettier. It was ALSO a lot faster to actually create, and offers some cooler effects like the nebulae.

Cralis wrote:
- All of these are going to have some better art, moreso than my craptastic MS Paint style stuff. Not "I lifted this from a website somewhere" art either... :D


Heh, did you get someone to do art for you? That is something I'm trying to figure out for the TSU history as well...


I haven't gotten some of it done -yet-. I'm in... negotiations with a friend of a friend who's an artist and has some experience doing this sort of thing. Logos, flags, some character archtypes that sort of thing. I use Fractal Mapper to do some rather cool looking planetary maps and such that you'll be seeing in the scenario book, and the empire guidebook. I also dabble (badly) with using Blender to do some 3d art that's slowly making progress. I've got a basic design concept done for the deWulf ships as well as the Sintillans. I just need to come up with some other concepts for other navies...

Cralis wrote:
I'm also trying to get some of my other players to start writing stuff up so I can post it here as well, so then you can see some of the other madness (one of my PRs has had some insane luck with remnant units and berserkers... which has led to some interesting results and a hefty dose of paranoia on his part).


I have to admit that I didn't know you had other players in the game. That is just awesome. Your work is inspiring some ideas for mine :-)


Of the four people who are in the game, Club is the only other guy who posts here that I know of. The other two are just lurkers :) But hopefully I can persuade them to actually get into the mess and post some stuff. I know one of them is chewing on some stuff.. but given the nature of his empire substantial entries are... questionable.
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Re: What's Coming Soon™

Postby Cralis on Mon 26 Oct 2009 23:42

Xveers wrote:Yeah. It's pretty much done. I just need to get some free time to spend an afternoon on Blender and whip up a few more basic designs (need to finish on my deWulf destroyer, and do a generic orbital space station) and then it'll pretty much be done. Also need to finish off the Data Annex for it (ship designs and star system data) but that's an hour's work or so to complete and format.


Very nice. As soon as I get the bulk of this site done I'm planning on getting the bulk of the TSU stuff done and get some documents like that out. But I've got a lot of work to do. Darn school :-) Of course, what I'm learning at school is directly translating to finished work on the website.

Well, they differ for me because I used much better software to actually make the maps. I was previously using AutoREALM to make the maps, and far before that MS Paint. While functional, AutoREALMS had a lot of annoying little features (like asking for confirmations on ANYTHING that gets done) and it didn't like a lot of more complicated images. It also had a really bad method of importing images from other programs. Also, dumping the map out to a basic Jpeg was a nightmare where you guestimated the dimensions of the picture and prayed you got a good resolution in the final result.

As a basic note, this is an AutoRealms map http://xveers.deviantart.com/art/Navigation-Map-2-deWulf-Core-100944061 and this is the same map done up in Fractal Mapper 8 http://xveers.deviantart.com/art/deWulf-Universe-deWulf-Core-141555763. As you can see, it's prettier. It was ALSO a lot faster to actually create, and offers some cooler effects like the nebulae.


Oh wow, thats pretty cool. I've been using VISIO for making maps, but mine look more like technical documents then anything else. I've been wondering if I should pretty them up something like what you've done. I'll have to look into Fractal Mapper.

I haven't gotten some of it done -yet-. I'm in... negotiations with a friend of a friend who's an artist and has some experience doing this sort of thing. Logos, flags, some character archtypes that sort of thing. I use Fractal Mapper to do some rather cool looking planetary maps and such that you'll be seeing in the scenario book, and the empire guidebook. I also dabble (badly) with using Blender to do some 3d art that's slowly making progress. I've got a basic design concept done for the deWulf ships as well as the Sintillans. I just need to come up with some other concepts for other navies...


Ok cool, thats what I was wondering. I've done artwork by hand using pencil and ink, but I'm absolutely worthless at computer art. I think I'm going to try and find someone at the school who might be interested in doing some art for resume-padding.

Of the four people who are in the game, Club is the only other guy who posts here that I know of. The other two are just lurkers :) But hopefully I can persuade them to actually get into the mess and post some stuff. I know one of them is chewing on some stuff.. but given the nature of his empire substantial entries are... questionable.


Hey Club, good job! :-)

I welcome anyone who is willing to participate. If they want to have separate sub-forums for their work, I'd be willing to do that. I can do them separately or even directly under this one!
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Mapping (Re: What's Coming Soon™)

Postby PracticalM on Thu 29 Oct 2009 16:59

I guess I'm surprised that more people don't use Graphviz, especially since the WP data can be programmatically linked to the tool to create the map instead of doing it by hand.

Graphviz http://www.graphviz.org/
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Re: Mapping (Re: What's Coming Soon™)

Postby Cralis on Thu 29 Oct 2009 17:01

PracticalM wrote:I guess I'm surprised that more people don't use Graphviz, especially since the WP data can be programmatically linked to the tool to create the map instead of doing it by hand.

Graphviz http://www.graphviz.org/


Interesting. I've never seen it before. Although you can do something very similar with Visio.
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Re: Mapping (Re: What's Coming Soon™)

Postby Xveers on Thu 29 Oct 2009 17:56

PracticalM wrote:I guess I'm surprised that more people don't use Graphviz, especially since the WP data can be programmatically linked to the tool to create the map instead of doing it by hand.

Graphviz http://www.graphviz.org/


I know that Cliff used it extensively in his game, and he did use it when he was part of my game, but I disliked it for two reasons: It was a bit too clinical for my tastes (I like my maps for this to be pretty) and I found that there was a finite limit on the amount of information you could convey on a map before it became way too cluttered.

As an organizational tool it's beautiful, but for something that is meant to be nice to look at as well, it's a bit lackluster.

Plus, while I understood the data format, I never did learn how you took the .txt datafile and dumped it into an actual graphic.
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Re: Mapping (Re: What's Coming Soon™)

Postby PracticalM on Fri 30 Oct 2009 17:57

Cralis wrote:
PracticalM wrote:I guess I'm surprised that more people don't use Graphviz, especially since the WP data can be programmatically linked to the tool to create the map instead of doing it by hand.

Graphviz http://www.graphviz.org/


Interesting. I've never seen it before. Although you can do something very similar with Visio.


It's real power is that you can just put the connections in a text file and let it create the map. It isn't always pretty but after dealing with some of the tools I've come to prefer programmatic generation when possible.
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Re: Mapping (Re: What's Coming Soon™)

Postby krenshala on Mon 02 Nov 2009 22:36

PracticalM wrote:I guess I'm surprised that more people don't use Graphviz, especially since the WP data can be programmatically linked to the tool to create the map instead of doing it by hand.

Graphviz http://www.graphviz.org/

Thats what I was using for mapping in SF. Unfortunately, the last version I downloaded (for Windows) stopped behaving in the same way, so I've been having problems getting it to create an undirected graph.
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Re: What's Coming Soon™

Postby Club on Tue 22 Dec 2009 21:56

Xveers wrote: (one of my PRs has had some insane luck with remnant units and berserkers... which has led to some interesting results and a hefty dose of paranoia on his part).



Me and SC were talking about that. Just for fun, I've made up something for Xveers to use the next time a 'zerk is rolled



Godawful LN class Berserker AM(1) 100 XOe racks 500 Hull TL 12

[5]S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2
S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2
S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2S2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2
A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2
A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2
A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2A2MgMgMgMgMgMgIta(JeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJe)WbWbWbWbWbMg
WbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMg(JeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJe
Je)DcbDeDcbDe(JeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJe)DcbDeDcbDeWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWb
WbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgDcbDeDcbDe(JeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJe)DcbDeDcbDe
WbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbWbMgWbWbWbWbMgWb
Ye?db?bDcbDeDcbDe(JeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJeJe)(DFEa) [6/1]

371 HTK S2x100 A2x100 Dex10 Dcbx10 Wbx75 Mgx21 DFEa Ye ?b ?db Trg:10 Def -2 Cost = 14495
1260 MSP 585 Re, 300 Rcb, 75 AFW-Re LRW-ECM-1 and EDMb tech known
Each Wb contains 1Re and 1 Rcb. XO racks carry 10 EDMb and 30 Rcb.


It can fire 225 missiles a turn. At poor accuracy, and only once every 4 turns, but still. -225- missiles. While loading, it empties a Mg and a quarter a turn. It is not exactly slow either, and designed to shrug off massive return fire.


This thing was fun to make, and I suspect It would be fun to use. For me, anyway. He's only EL 7 or 8. This could possibly wipe out his empire. Then get started on Squirrel's. It would, without a doubt, wipe ME out
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