First Contact

Override (Nova engine) TC

So I've started to learn how to make plugins, and I want to turn my attention to Override plugins (for the Nova engine), because it's my favorite of the three games. Being a bit of a history geek, I'm interested in making a large-scale plugin to basically place the player right at the beginning of the Voinion War; he can save Mankind from extinction, help in the advancement of UE technology/stealing tech from the Voinions, participate in the Battle of Sol, and eventually end the plugin at about the same place where Override begins.

I know, this is probably a much larger project than I know right now (I like to dream big), but I think it could be a good way to learn-by-doing, and it has the advantage of not really requiring any new graphics (just eliminating many items available in UE space until the point in the game where they're actually developed, and changing some of the graphics for the border colonies to look like inhabited worlds, until such time as they're destroyed by the Voinion onslaught).

I guess my initial questions are these: would anyone actually be interested in playing such a plugin, should I actually follow through on this; and does it sound to you plugin vets out there like I'm overlooking some really massive obstacles that will make this a much harder/bigger/more impossible task than I initially thought?

I'd hate to start it only to find out I've bitten off way more than I can chew, but at the same time I enjoy challenges, and don't feel like just making random cheat plugs...


This post has been edited by Male_Valkyrie : 09 January 2011 - 04:32 PM

Sounds like fun, but you're quite right: that would be one massive undertaking. I suspect you'd actually want to make some new graphics, rather than simply recycle old ones. Overall, though, the idea sounds pretty good!

I disagree. It sounds like a reasonable amount of work but as long as you keep your goals contained, it definitely sounds do-able. Storylines in override style are easier (less writing) than Nova, and this sounds like a very storyline-driven plug. I'd be interested to see how you'd do it - would you limit the galaxy to a smaller-than override size? It would make sense since "first contact" took place so many times in Override.

I see no reason for new graphics.

Yes, as megaprojects go, this one sounds surprisingly manageable. The real work would be at the planning stage, namely working out a compelling story, and perhaps some original combat mechanics to keep people interested in a world they already know.

I like the idea. I can't help at all, but I like it and it definitely sounds doable. I'll definitely play it if you go through with it, EVO is my favorite of the three, as well. Graphics from EVO could be acceptable, though you may want some new ones for ships that were phased out before EVO came along. Just something to make it feel more like 'back in the day'. Other ships that are in EVO you may want to have not show up until later, like Voinian interceptors and fighters, the scoutship, freight-couriers, etc.

Good luck, hopefully you won't need it. 🙂

Thanks for the encouragement guys! The planning is definitely the thing I'm focusing on the most right now; I'm assuming I'm going to cut off most of the Galaxy (specifically the connections to the Strands), to force the player to focus on the conflict. It's going to be very storyline based, obviously.

As far as ships, graphics, etc., I was assuming I'd make the later ships and weapons disappear (Interceptors, UE and Voinion Fighters, Hunter Missiles, etc.) and have the player help the UE develop them (and have the Voinion stuff show up as reactions to the UE, as appropriate). Might need graphics for old ships, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

Anyway, glad to hear it sounds feasible and interesting, I'll try to keep y'all updated!

Apparently when Peter Cartwright designed EV Override , he wrote the entire United Earth string before even creating Strand space. This puts all of those missions travelling between Earth and Emalghion in a new light — you had to go all the way through Voinian territory! (If you're making a plug-in about the Voinians, incidentally, you should note that there is only one O in their name.) It isn't likely to be one of those plug-ins notable for deep moral ambiguity, but I think your project could help re-establish some of this immediacy by creating a more embattled Earth government.

It's odd, actually, that I've never come across a major project like this before. Everyone and his stunt double tried to make prequels to the original Escape Velocity set during the Great War, but the equivalent for EV Override seems to have been strangely neglected.

QUOTE (David Arthur @ May 15 2010, 11:06 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>

It's odd, actually, that I've never come across a major project like this before. Everyone and his stunt double tried to make prequels to the original Escape Velocity set during the Great War, but the equivalent for EV Override seems to have been strangely neglected.

I have a theory on that.

The storyline in EVC is pretty vague, not much is told about the past, and the story in the game itself is slow and (sorry EVC fans) a little boring. It makes sense people would try to spice it up by making their own stories for the game. In EVO, however, the story is fun, vibrant, and brings me back to play it again and again despite having played it 3,000 times already. There isn't much of a need for fans to write a new story since it's already great.

Then there's the wars themselves. In EVC very little is said about the war. Simply that aliens attacked, we fought back, and we were eventually victorious. In EVO, it actually describes the Battle of Sol and even after the intro the fighting is still happening, making the player feel like they're still in the war.

In short, EVC's past is pretty vague, so it's natural that players would want to explore the possibilities. EVO's past is talked about all over the place (the intro, human weapons, human ships) so most people wouldn't think to try allowing players to experience that.

Not to say it's a bad idea, I support the idea very much. I can just see why no one thought of it before. 🙂

This is a wonderful idea. I will be watching this thread with interest. 🆒

this is a really great idea. Im in "off mode" right now concerning EV. I come back every six months to a year. This would bring me back early... Also, if your interested, it would not be necessary to eliminate all of the other aliens in the universe.

  • You could have a pilot that starts as the other alien race that is fighting the voinians.
    + An idea with that would be to have them and the "earthlings" get in contact, working together secretly, -_____and make it a side storyline to the main one, or its own separate line completely.

  • You could have a non-earth pilot that starts as the trader aliens (dont remember the name, the first ones __you encounter. A storyline going around the idea of them being aware of the war going on, and secretly __helping one side or the other. I always hated how altruistic those aliens were...

  • Another possibility is to have a pilot start as a voinian, and start a rebel uprising, and explain that though earth didnt know about it at the time, but the reason they survived the battle of sol was because your rebellion made the voinans split their forces on multiple fronts.

lots of possibilities that could be done with this. Since its summer and finals are over, i'd be willing to help out with writing if you like. Unfortunately im addicted to my new itunes, and so cant run evnew on windows, so i cant do much on the programming side. drop me an email if your interested. send me a pm if your interested.

You can, however, run Mission Computer since I assume you're on a Mac now.

I don't think he is. iTunes is perfectly compatible with Windows. The issue is that the latest iTunes update installs the latest version of QuickTime, which WinNova and EVNEW both cannot function with, unfortunately.

Brief update:

I've cut down the original Override galaxy to the size I want. Despite TheClaimer's good suggestions, I decided to go with (basically) just the UE and Voinian systems. This may change in the future to some extent, but I doubt it.

I've started work editing the system descriptions, governments, etc.

Do any of you more experienced plugin developers have suggestions for how I should proceed? Like, should I move next to missions, or outfits, or something else? I have a pretty good idea of what I want the player to do throughout the game, and ideas for side-stories as well, so I'm assuming missions will be my next step, but any advice would be appreciated :).

Before writing a story for any given universe, that universe myst first exist and you must know it well. I suggest finishing all the ships, outfits, weapons, and anything else needed to have a functioning universe before writing and coding missions.

Although you might, at the same time, want to write up the progression of the story, so that your 'pretty good idea' has become near-certainty by the time you actually need to turn it into mïsn resources. Otherwise, you risk finishing a universe, and then realising you're a lot farther from finishing than you thought — this is how plenty of other plug-ins have collapsed.

Brief update: I am still working on this, though it is intermittent, and slow-going seeing as I have to figure out pretty much everything one step at a time. I do mostly have the Galaxy in place, but I'm bouncing back and forth between editing individual systems, constructing fleets, and figuring out which ships exist at the beginning, which don't, and what new ones I'll need to create.

If I can really knuckle down, I should have a fully functional Galaxy, with most fleet arrangements, etc., created in around a month, at which point I hope to start the fun stuff (i.e., new ships, maybe outfits, missions, etc.)

this sounds great. +1
what do you need help with?

the original infini-d ship models are around somewhere.... might be nice to render them differently? low-tech variations?

this mission map might help with sifting through mission strings for history detail:

are you going to include your music, as well?
i think 'wandering, pt 2' would kinda suit a first contact/exploration sort of thing...?

This post has been edited by Tycho : 26 May 2010 - 11:17 PM

Well, while I can handle figuring out everything for missions, systems, bits, etc., etc., there is no way I'm going to be able to learn how to do ship graphics. So basically I need (not necessarily right now, as there's lots of work to be done first) someone who can do... well, everything, when it comes to ship graphics (possibly a new weapon or two as well, but I haven't even started thinking about that. And I doubt it anyway.)

I already know for certain of a UE warship which will need a graphic, and I'm probably going to throw in at least two Civilian ships as well (a older version of the Scoutcraft and a luxury cruise ship, for starters).

Again, I'm not asking for volunteers now (unless, Tycho, you just volunteered 😉 ), because this project is still young and I'd hate to ask anyone to put in a ton of work for something which will probably be quite a while before it shows any big results. Just putting it out there as something I'll probably be asking for at some point in the future.

the good thing about the plug system is that any work created, can be copied and used in other plugs. so, i think, the work should be, almost, never wasted....

i'd like to do ship stuff. i'm not a great modeler though. it'd be handy to have someone to work with on them, for texturing, etc.

i think this plug is a great idea for the community to help develop. i mean, the faster it's 'made', the sooner we can play it.

found this looking for ship images. has stats of all ships and lists outfits/upgrades.

This post has been edited by Tycho : 26 May 2010 - 11:27 PM

QUOTE (Tycho @ May 27 2010, 05:23 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>

i'd like to do ship stuff. i'm not a great modeler though.

original helian

clunky old-fi helian

took about 10 minutes in google sketchup. obviously more detail is needed.
i'm thinking sheet metal and rivets.

This post has been edited by Tycho : 27 May 2010 - 12:19 AM

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