Maybe some of you guys follow my Blog, where I post regular updated on my current game project called Projekt "W". I haven't been posting much about it around forums and such (and also not posted much info on the story) cause I don't think that it's ready for bigger publicity yet, so I'll wait posting news and stuff on Projekt "W" until I have some demo to show off.
But to get some feedback I decided to also post it over here at PGD, so here are some infos on the game, but please note that I don't want to publish too much info on the story or the whole gameplay yet!
I had the initial idea for this game sometime around 2003, mainly because some friends and me were joking about taking over world domination (and nothing has changed about it, except that people always look kinda odd when we talk about taking world domination in public ), so I wanted to make a game where you can exactly do that : take over the whole world and take no prisoners. I decided for a round-based approach and quickly put together a small game design document and a working prototype of the game. But somehow back at that time I had no good ideas and the game concept itself was clumsy and sounded like it wouldn't be too interesting at all so I decided to not put any furhter work into this project and shoot for other things (like NewtonPlayGround).
But then after doing a lot with physics (all the newton stuff) I wanted to make some traditional game again (must have been around July of this year), and besides some other ideas and prototypes lurking around in my game developement folder, I stumbled across this one again and now wanted to make something better out of it.
So instantly I started to rework the whole game design document to make the game interesting to play, and the ideas really started to flow. Up until now the new game design document is already 20 pages long and the current version of the game is already rather advanced, so this time I have a good feeling of finishing it somewhere around in 2007.
As I said above I don't want to tell too much about the story, though I recently finished all important parts of it. I want the players to be surprised when playing the game, so I'll only give you a small glimpse about the story. The story itself is mainly "my" continuation of the current world political situation with a worst-case-scenario.
The game plays in a not-to-far future (around 70 years from now) and out of all the nations around the world there are only five big nations (or call them factions) alive that actually don't really like each other. Those nations share the world and the player will take control over one of those nations and his goal will be to annihilate all others.
I find this hostile scenario in a not-so-distance future very interesting, especially since it also has ties to the current instable situation around the globe (actually as of now we're closer ot a third world war than back in the days of the cold war) and it's nothing like some far-away setting in the future or in the middle-ages. And because it's set some decades in the future it also allows me to implement units, buildings and technologies that are semi-futuristic, together with things humanity already has created.
Basically this is like risk (the board-game, don't know how famous this is outside of germany/europe) but in with a lot of additional stuff. It's turn-based, so you have a lot of time to make your strategic decission, which should give the game a lot of depth. The player will control a given number of regions (depending on what nation you select) and besides defending your own regions you'll have to attack and overtake the regions of the other players, until the whole world is yours.
So you can build military units and create armies that you move around the map, you can research new technologies that'll unlock other technologies, buildings and new units. Another important part of the game is managing your regions, cause earch region has different factors that you need to balance. You'll construct buildings in those regions that influence those factors, as well as some of the researched technologies do. If you e.g. just construct huge factories you'll quickly pollute your region and loose it cause your population has died and on the other hand if you don't give your people some buildings to relax they'll uprise against you and you'll loose that region too.
So those are the basics of the game play but there are many more factets that I don't want to tell too much about, like Espionage and a global project that kind of is the apex of each nations workings and has huge impacts on the game.
Describing the gameplay as a whole is a bit complicated, but basically think of a mixture between risk, the civilization games and a bit from some of the space exploration games like Master of Orion or Ascendancy and you should get a basic idea.
I'm coding the game using the recent Turbo Delphi 2006 (but developement started with Delphi 7), and as all my other projects this one also uses OpenGL for rendering and also OpenAL for sound output. In terms of graphics it requires OpenGL 2.0, as it uses some advanced features for rendering a very detailled globe with a moving day-night line and a nice reflecting water surface on the floor.
The most complex part of this project is the GUI (fully OpenGL), which I wrote from scratch and includes all comon objects like labels, panels, listboxes, memos, imaged and also supports rendering 3D objects into window objects (via Pixelbuffers). It also supports transparent windows and custom skins and implements everything you know from the windows UI, like dragging windows, scrolling within e.g. listboxes and stuff. One special feature is the main toolbar you can see in the lower right wich as kind of a skinned control where the buttons nicely fade in when you hover your cursor over them.
Multiplayer is also planned (besides playing against AI-opponents), with the first demo including multiplayer via hotseat, and LAN/Internet (and even maybe PBEM) following at a later point.
Well this is actually the most interesting part of doing a game in my opinion. As I said above I have a big game design document where all parts of the game design are written down and I also have separate documents that e.g. include a list of all the buildings to be in the game. But game design also includes creating graphics, 3D models and so on, as the game's style has to be fluid. It should look like it comes from one hand, otherwise it'll brake the games "feeling. So for this project I'm doing everyhing myself, not taking any ressources from the net. I'm doing buildings in a 3D modeller, creating textures for them, rendering UI items, creating graphics for the user interface and much much more.
This takes much more time than only coding the game, but also is a part of making games that makes the most fun, cause you can live out your whole creativitiy when e.g. designing and modelling some futuristic buildings.
And as I posted this so late over here at PGD (it's not that I don't like you ) here you'll have three current ingame shots I made exclusively for this posting :
(click for a bigger view)
I hope you don't mind that the text on those screenshots is german, it'll have the option to switch to english language when I release it .
Hopefully you didn't fell asleep while reading my post, and though I didn't tell too much about the project yet I'd love to hear feedback from the PGD community, or if you have questions don't dare to ask.