I've been working on a TC for EV Nova for some time now, and it's probably a little to early in the development to make any announcements but I think that it shouldn't become vaporware based on how much I've gotten done so far. I plan to make at least forty different kinds of ships and I've modeled 23 and rendered 1 into a sprite sheet. I've also created all the planet graphics as seen from space and two space stations. As for outfits I've modeled 30 and plan to include a few hundred (included reuse of graphics like nova did). The graphical quality isn't amazing but it isn't horrible either (I'm also not reusing graphics from nova or other shipyards), and since I'm using anim8or for the graphics I have to use a bit of work-arounds because it doesn't have a very good texturing tool but like I said they don't look horrible. If anyone wants to know about the galaxy so far I haven't added any new systems but I'm looking at a lot of star maps to make sure it's accurate, it's just that I want to finish adding all the ships first so I don't end up adding 800 something systems then going about adding dudes and planets to each one again.

Story wise I want it to have a very in-depth back story and lots of storylines for the several main factions:

The Federation - The first government set up by the human civilization shortly after creating ships with hyperspace capabilities, their technology is quite primitive compared to the other two factions being mostly plasma based is nonetheless incredibly effective

The Armethian Empire - A species of aliens originating in the southern half of the Andromeda galaxy they have the most amount of systems under their control, as well as having massive ships with large amounts of armor

The Lord'a'kai - Another species of originating in the northern tip of the Andromeda galaxy they are technologically superior to the other factions and just about all of the weapons, shields, ship propulsion work by generating large, controllable fields of artificial gravity

I'm going to make more minor factions and that shouldn't take too long, but I just need a program that can make some nice sound effects if anyone has any suggestions please send me a PM

You just made an announcement. đŸ˜›

Anyway, for making sounds, if you have a microphone, you can get Audacity, record yourself making sounds, whether it be with your voice or other objects, and then modify them until you get something you like. Audacity is free and works on both Mac and Windows. However, you'll then need to also get Sound Sampler (Mac only I believe) to convert the sounds into System 7 format, which is required for Nova to use the sound. Sound Sampler is not free, but it does have an endless trial that places restrictions on you that shouldn't come into play when making sounds for Nova.

Also, I recommend not creating "all of x" and then "all of y" and then "all of z". Often, once you've finished "all of x" and start working on "all of y", you'll find you might need more of "x" to fill a particular role, or that "all of x" is horribly unbalanced by the addition of any one new "y" resource, requiring to go back and edit "all of x" again. Working on groups of related resources seems to work better because progress is more visible. For example, when you make a ship, create the resource for it, the descriptions, the graphics (or get placeholders), weapons for it, their graphics (or placeholders), outfits for the ship and those weapons, their descriptions, their graphics, and then assign the ship to the proper dude and flet resources. It sounds like a lot of work, and it is, but you'll have to do it eventually no matter how you go about it and this method creates a fully functional ship that you can immediately play test. This method, additionally, has the benefit of having much more totally complete resources if you start to burn out, allowing you to cut back and release something much smaller with magnitudes less effort as opposed to having 400 ships with no descriptions, weapons, etc.

It's even better if you can do related resources like this. A good method would be to work on a region of space, such as creating all of the ships, systems, outfits, planets, etc. for your Federation and other govts in their territory. Of course, during this time, you might burn out working on Feddie stuff but not on the project. But that's okay, because if you're doing the above what you had made so far would be fully functional and playable, so you could start working on their enemies and and immediately begin to test balance between them and the like.

Good luck with your project, hope to see it finished, polished, and released at some point in the future.

Sounds interesting! Best of luck on your endeavors! JTH already covered most of the bases, so I only have one question…

Why/how would you want to take the time to get all the way to Milky Way when you have a perfectly good spiral galaxy of your own?

If you're on Windows and using EVNEW, you can import .wav files directly into EVNEW without .sfil conversion. Handy.

I have over a hundred and twenty meg of vaporware over nearly eight years- it can happen to you too, regardless of how much work or thought that you put into it.

QUOTE (krugeruwsp @ Sep 25 2009, 08:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>

If you're on Windows and using EVNEW, you can import .wav files directly into EVNEW without .sfil conversion. Handy.

That I already knew I just wish evnew supported other sound formats like mp3 if you want to add background music the only thing I'll have trouble with sound wise is making them

Use Audacity, or free sound effect repositories. Sometimes, the biggest problem is that people keep trying to reinvent the wheel with stuff they are not especially geared up to do or have a lot of experience with. Sound effects can be honestly quite complicated to create and to do extremely well, as can 3D models, and many of the other aspects of creating a plug. There is absolutely nothing wrong with finding people or places that have experience and materials that are done well and allow you to use them.

You can also find several free format converters for Windows, both open source (completely free) and freeware. You can even use iTunes to convert many different file formats to .wav.

If anyone is interested in how graphics are going here's a Federation Carrier


Not bad, but I would look at picking up some various metal textures. You can find free textures all over the internet. I don't know if Anim8or can handle textures (I haven't messed with it since my early days in the planetarium,) but Blender, which is also a free, open-source program, is quite easy to use after you learn the basics, and handles textures quite nicely.

anim8or can do textures and they look fine but mapping them is very hard and I don't want to spend 3 hours drawing a really detailed texture like what you would see in nova then spend another few hours modeling a ship just to see it look like crap. I've also used blender before I don't like it so much because it couldn't render as easily as anim8or and I had trouble with the interface

Blender can be quite tricky at first. The interface is not particularly intuitive at first glace. I would highly suggest looking up the online wikibook "Blender: Noob to Pro." It is an outstanding tutorial book that walks you through the difficult spots with Blender. I found I had quite a bit of trouble with it at first, and always when I learn a new thing, but once I've figured out a new aspect, it's always very useful, generally pretty simple, and works outstandingly. I'm surprised you had trouble with Blender's internal renderer. Hitting F12 should just render out the current scene, and I think control-P pops up a preview window that can do a very small test render of a little area.

At the very least, mapping textures in Blender is very easy. You can download image textures from just about anywhere on the internet and set the texture mode to "image." Works awesome, and after a few trials and errors, you'll be texturing like mad in no time. The materials function of Blender is much, much more functional and powerful than Anim8or. There's also a lot of shortcuts that can make a texture look very nice and take relatively little time to actually render out.

it's not that I have trouble getting it to render it's just when I do it only gives me one angle and it's zoomed out really far which is not good for making nova sprite sheets

Just move the camera around, same as in Anim8or. You can also adjust the zoom and lens of the camera. Decreasing the lens size will zoom the camera in, increasing will widen it out. If you need to check camera positioning, just use the 0 on the number pad (if you have one.) It will take you to the active camera view and show you exactly what the camera will see. You can adjust rotation and location of the camera in Blender just the same as every other object. You can also adjust the render size in Blender (which I don't think Anim8or lets you do,) so you can render out at the exact size you need.

Well just as an update if anyone reads this I've added some weapon sprites, ships sprites, and weapons/outfits to the game

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