Introduction

Project Universe (PU) is preparing humanity for our future as a united interplanetary civilization via collaboration, education, technology and video games.

Business

    Shaostoul Social Purpose Corporation (SSPC) is the official business entity of PU, it’s registered in Washington, USA in December 2019. An SPC was recommended by fellow independent game developers, upon further research it was determined to be the best long term option to provide community benefits.

Benefits

    Benefits provided by SSPC include: healthcare, housing, food, utilities and education. Additional benefits become available through partnerships with other organizations. Unfortunately some benefits may be unavailable in various countries due to international issues, this’ll be resolved as global support and influence grows

    Dedicated contributors (~6 months) receive free software and/or hardware to ensure you can continue doing your job to the best of your ability. All contributors are eligible to receive benefits based on available resources and your contributions.

Employment

Either you’re hired directly by SSPC or as a subcontractor, either way you receive a $2,000/month salary. After a core game development team is hired (~15 people) non-developers will be hired.

Volunteers

    The driving force behind PU’s continued success is the voluntary contributions of community members and businesses. Spreading the word is the best way to help as it leads to new volunteers & attracts the attention of potential business partners. Volunteers 

Funding

In order to fund a project of this magnitude we must utilize multiple methods.

GoFundMe

Disabled in favor of Patreon’s smaller fees, raised $855 from January 2019 to June 2019.

Patreon

Primary method of crowdfunding, still running, raised $8194+ from September 2014 to July 2020. It was set up a few months after Shaostoul began modding/teaching for Space Engineers.

PayPal

Still running, raised $850+ from July 2017 to July 2020. Used when donors can’t access Patreon likely due to living outside the USA. Less fees than Patreon, more difficult to track total donations by individuals.

Affiliates/Partners

Primary method of long term passive commission based income, requires the game to develop further before income is generated. Affiliate/tracking links are obtained from each business personally or from a third party affiliate site such as CJ.com, ShareASale.com & Impact.com.

Retail partners are accessed from in-game touch-screen kiosks located in the mall. When players purchase products/services this way we receive a commission for generating the sale; As we gain more partners to add to the mall and users join total potential income increases.

Sponsors

Received $30,000 from Charlie Driscoll in October 2019.

Merch

Raised $0 as of 5 July 2020, available via Zazzle, Vespertine Apparel

Game Content

Currently no game-specific microtransactions exist; may include cosmetics, account bonuses or other stuff. Game must develop further before further R&D is done.

Donation Rewards

Prerelease donation amount counts for twice as much for release day rewards.

Prerelease

  • $1/lifetime – Account Accolade: Risk Taker
    • 5% mission rep reward

Postrelease

  • $1/lifetime – Account Accolade: A Helping Hand
    • 5% mission rep reward, stacks with Risk Taker

Jobs

If you have a way of contributing beyond what’s listed here we’ll add it to the list!

Game/Software/Web Developer

These are the skills required for development with links to learn.

Programming

2D

3D

Sound

Community Representative

Content creators, influencers, streamers and anyone else providing non-dev services. They act as a point of contact between the community and devs as communication is crucial to creating a better user experience. May be called upon to assist during conventions, what’s needed depends on the situation.

School

PU’s school consists of 3 stages;

Stage 1

Free & paid tutorials already available on the internet, linked courses are intended to teach skills useful to PU’s development; courses not relevant to PU are more than likely available, but aren’t directly linked to. Paid courses require an affiliate link to be listed, as a result direct links to relevant lessons aren’t available.

3D/BLENDER

Programming

Stage 2

Stage 3

Project Components

PU consists of several separate components working together to address the concerns of today and humanity’s future simultaneously.

Game

Social interaction is a powerful contributor to good mental health, the game addresses this by being a social MMO encouraging players to make friends and work together towards common goals. Most gameplay is designed for solo and group play for the sake of introverts and extroverts. Loneliness and isolation are dangerous when left unchecked.

Cabin fever caused by forced isolation (IE: due to a quarantine) is potentially life-threatening, while on Earth it’s easier to address, when paired with the isolated living conditions of space and planets with unbreathable atmospheres like Mars, it’s exponentially more difficult. The game addresses this by providing an immersive living environment where players can escape reality while still accomplishing real-life tasks.

Claustrophobia is an awful experience, while it’s relatively safe to temporarily treat it with medication on Earth, in space it’s not an ideal situation as you’re stuck there for months/years and prolonged medication use can cause health issues, the game addresses this by providing wide open environments by default. Real-life interplanetary colony spacecraft will likely be much more cramped in the beginning, virtual reality allows you to escape the confines of your room without endangering yourself or others.

School

    Preparing humanity for the future, preventing suffering, eliminating discrimination, combating ignorance all starts with proper education. The school is free and globally accessible to ensure everyone has equal opportunity to learn skills they can use to contribute to society. More complex skills are taught naturally through the game, such as leadership, improvisation, threat assessment, self-care and more.

    The old school method of teaching was great while it lasted, but with the internet, AI, collaboration and VR we can create a better future-ready school system capable of teaching anyone anywhere anything whether they’re on Earth, Mars, the Moon or living in space. The coronavirus quarantine did a good job of showing how unacceptably inadequate our current global school system is, fortunately kids love video games and learning so it’ll be easy to introduce something new.

Mall

    Fulfills multiple roles, it’s the main player lobby for the game, funds development without requiring users to pay for the game and provides a large single location development playground. From the mall players can access almost everything PU has to offer from a centralized location allowing users to relax while people watching.

Dev Info

Hardware

Minimum specs:

  • Not available, yet.

Recommended specs:

  • Not available, yet.

Software

Game EngineUnity 2020.1.0f1

Programming Languages

  • C# for Unity game development
  • Python for Blender PU dev plug-in

3D assets – Final model format must be Binary FBX

2D assets – Final texture format must be BC7 DDS

Virtual/Augmented Reality is supported

Ray Tracing is supported

Links

Development related links

  • GitHub – Where the latest version of the Unity project is uploaded & downloadable
  • Trello – Project management tool tracking available/WIP/completed dev tasks
  • Discord – This is where the community, volunteers, developers & other contributors chat

Shaostoul Social Purpose Corporation’s official business accounts

Shaostoul’s official personal accounts

Game Info

Gameplay

Farming

Asteroid Harvesting

Crafting

As fleet citizens you can

  • Grow a variety of crops in hydropic farms such as food or renewable crafting materials
  • Harvest raw materials from asteroids such as water, iron or something exotic
  • Salvage alien technology for personal use or to be reverse engineered by R&D
  • Craft equipment such as consumables, weapons, power armor or your own mech
  • Compete in PvP competitions for special rewards
  • Decorate your home with community created furniture and trophies
  • Participate in fleet events such as alien invasions and monsters from other dimensions
  • And more!

Player Characters

Death

Death is handled differently depending on the stage of development and/or what the player was doing:

  • During PvP/PvE training simulations nothing is lost
  • During live expeditions all carried equipment is lost upon team wipe
  • Options for mid-mission team wipe revival/equipment retrieval will be available later in development, such as requesting an Emergency Recovery Team

Respawning

Respawning is handled differently depending on the stage of development and/or what the player was doing:

  • During PvP/PvE training simulations respawning is explained per event
  • During live expeditions respawning is limited by equipment the team brings
  • Options for mid-mission team wipe revival/equipment retrieval will be available later in development, such as requesting an Emergency Recovery Team

Progression

Equipment

This could pertain to anything and everything. A vehicle, static like an incubator, hand-held like a rifle or rocket launcher, or even tools for building. Equipment would be created by the player and would carry a time value with it, and as a result, a sort of monetary value. It takes time to acquire resources to construct a vehicle and while those resources are free to gather, the time it takes could be significant. Directly bartering and trading resources in exchange for goods or services should also be an acceptable form of payment. For example, if there’s a super rare antimatter component that takes a lot of effort to acquire, then it would carry a time and monetary value that a user could use as payment for goods or services rendered to someone else.

Vehicles

Vehicles include, but are not limited to: tanks; trucks; mechs; spaceships; bikes; etc.

Structural

Structural equipment is classified as built objects that provide a function–whether it is floors, walls, ceilings, corridors, reactors, incubators, teleporters, etc.

Handheld

Handheld items include tools, weapons, and anything else that would be directly used by the player, except vehicles or structural objects.

Handhelds have begun receiving descriptions and outlines here, but will receive artwork at a later date.

Environments

Players should feel immersed and be able to experience a diverse setting regardless of where they’re playing. If on planets this means flora, fauna, and weather that make the planet feel like much more than a large rock floating in space. If in space it could be nebulae, asteroid belts, etc. Ideally if a player sees a location, they should be able to go to it.

Unfortunately, not every location in a game can be interesting, as such is the way of life, but things should be interesting to explore regardless. If someone likes environmental exploring, such as searching for a perfect place to build a base, it should feel like a journey rather than a chore. If someone like exploring ruins, installations, and other sorts of artificial structures, there needs to be a way of locating these beyond “There’s a GPS beacon saying go to these sets of coordinates.” Players should be rewarded for thorough exploration.

Planets

There is presently indecision related to planets, due to the sheer amount of information involved with making a planet interesting. To keep the scope of this project achievable by a small development team with no funding, planets will receive placeholder 3D meshes to begin with while work on space environments are populated. This renders planetary exploration unavailable, but at least a visual aesthetic will be provided until the time, knowledge, and money permits the creation of fully traversable planets.

Space

Space will be the initial play environment, but it could take place on massive spaceships or around asteroids–or just in the general vacuum. The idea is to create simple yet engaging situations, make those enjoyable for players, and then move onto the next situation. For example, if we create a generation ship (a massive ship usually depicted as having land and water inside to simulate a habitable planet for the species and being natural looking to a planet environment.) we’d be able to work out buildings, roads, gravity, flora, fauna, etc. without the strain of generating a full planet with many diverse biomes. That way we can make cool environments, but limit it to that specific environment. We could also create interesting space environment for space ships to fly around such as densely packed asteroids, nebulae, wreckages, and so forth. Essentially it limits our initial scope to a sustainable workload so we can focus on gameplay and small environments first, and then expand those small environments to larger ones.

Economy

Money

Generic currency used in transactions of material goods such as equipment and raw resources even when bartering isn’t an option.

Reputation

Used for account/character upgrades:

  • Cybernetic enhancements – personal AI, nanobots, etc.
  • Genetic alterations – increased bone density boosting endurance, increased height boosting strength, granting access to power armor favoring various genetic builds, etc.
  • Crafting recipes – tools, weapons, consumables, armor, power armor, tanks, mechs, etc.
  • Special permissions – requesting a power armor squad to your location during missions, increased expedition team capacity, etc.

Resources

Physical goods grown on farms, harvested from asteroids, salvaged during expeditions, crafted or obtained through other means.

Global Market

Fleet Market

A real-time public record of all the resources in supply/demand by the fleet. Players may buy/sell/donate resources used by the whole fleet:

  • Repairs to colony spacecraft after an alien invasion
  • Upgrading public crafting facilities
  • Completing serverwide quests
  • Building specialized facilities unlocking new features
  • Building the next dropship used to colonize planets

Private Market

A real-time public record of all the resources in supply/demand by players. Players may barter/buy/sell/donate resources used by individuals, friends or guilds:

  • Bartering a slew of resources in exchange for a mech from a craftsman with the skill and facilities necessary to build mechs.
  • Buying alien equipment from the only guild capable of defeating the aliens that use it in battle, because of mechs the community donated to.
  • Selling raw resources grown from the hydroponic farm you run.

Accessing Items

There are multiple methods of accessing public and private items for individuals, guilds and the fleet.

Armories

  • Personalized loadouts are configurable at any armory.
  • Not all armories have all the equipment stocked required by personalized loadouts.

Home Armory

  • Accessible by you and anyone you grant permission.
  • Stocked by you

Fleet Armory

  • Accessible by everyone
  • Stocked by the fleet market with equipment of the top rated loadouts.
  • Equipment taken from fleet armories influence next month’s crafter quotas.

Guild Armory

  • Accessible by everyone in the guild.
  • Stocked by guild members

Cargo

  • Limited capacity storage for equipment, vehicles and other resources.
  • Transferring items takes time as they’re physically moved via the cargo deck to their destination.

Home Storage

  • Accessible by you and anyone you grant permission.
  • All salvage, harvested crops and crafted items go to your home storage.
  • You can link your home storage with friends/family.

Guild Storage

  • Accessible by everyone in the guild.
  • Capacity is upgradeable depending on guild performance and contributions to the fleet.

Fleet Storage

  • Accessible through the fleet market.
  • Capacity is limited by the size of the fleet, upgradeable through fleet quests.

Calculating Base Value

Raw Resources

The value of raw resources is dependent on supply and demand:

  • Supply may be rare, guarded by difficult to defeat aliens requiring a large team combining their skills/resources to secure the supply chain, require expensive specialty tools few players possess, etc.
  • Demand may be incredibly low while a resource serves little to no purpose, though new game-play mechanics or equipment can cause prices to jump sharply.

Items

There are several variables used in calculating an items value such as:

  • The value of raw resources used to craft it.
  • Its usefulness in combat or other gameplay.
  • If it requires technology salvaged from hostile aliens during expeditions in its creation that is unobtainable through other (peaceful) means.
  • A new build designed by the community makes it popular.
  • A limited number of players or guilds possess the facilities necessary to craft it.

Earning Wealth

Farming 

  • Grown food & renewable resources donated to the fleet increasing reputation
  • Regardless of what’s happening, maintaining a steady supply of food is vital to keeping the fleet alive. High-quality food increases morale.
  • Players may grow non-food crops to produce crafting resources and even fuel for vehicles or weapons such as a flamethrower.

Asteroid Harvesting

  • The best way to gather periodic elements is from asteroids including items such as water, iron, carbon, platinum.
  • A safer alternative to gathering salvage.

Crafting

  • Resources gained from farming, asteroids and salvage can be used to craft hand-held equipment and even components to larger constructions such as spacecraft, mechs and other vehicles.
  • While selling raw resources is easy, crafting them into equipment and components by the fleet provides increased rewards.

Quests

  • Influenced by the fleet’s situation they may request players gather special resources possessed by aliens such as new technology to be reverse engineered to create new equipment.
  • This can include resources such as ammunition or fuel.

Missions

  • Typically a short procedurally generated adventure with a clear object and estimated completion time.
  • Intended for players with limited play time such as before/after work/school.

Expeditions

Medium scale events requiring many players to progress.

Fleet Events

  • Special events involving the entire fleet may occur such as an alien invasion, as a result players want to immediately collaborate to resolve the situation as soon as possible.
  • Failure to defend facilities or whole ships against alien invaders could result in a crafting facility being destroyed becoming unusable until it is rebuilt.

Scope and Planning

Design Scope

It’s very important for a game in development to not overshoot its limitations with its development team, game engine, hardware, funding, etc. If a game doesn’t have a ton of funding, they can’t have a huge development team, which limits what they can create in a timely manner. Due to the nature of this starting off as a “for free” project that could enter into some sort of crowdfunding, the initial budget is $0.

With this in mind, it is very important that we plan carefully what we work on. This is where the term scope is used. The full scope of the project might be quite grand , but our initial primary objective needs to be making a fun game with engaging content, and with a small dev team we have to focus on small pieces at a time.

Roadmap

While it’s just a rough draft, depending on the available skill set and funding, things could change drastically. For example: a surge in funding, skilled individuals, a proper financial backer, dumb luck, etc. could result in development progressing at an advanced rate. However, progress should be focused on core game mechanics and then on expansions/mini-expansions to game content once core mechanics and previous mechanics are fleshed out and successfully implemented.

Current Project

Our current project is to get a player walking around on some sort of terrain, implement basic multiplayer functionality, be able to build basic structures, vehicles, and hand-held items, and have a general player environment.

Next Project

The next step is to give purpose to the basic gameplay loops. This includes combat, mining, resource refinement, interacting with functional objects, etc.

Future Projects

Expanding the game environment beyond basic terrain environments. Adding a more diverse set of flora, fauna, equipment, vehicles, guns, AI, weather effects, etc.

Planning

This GDD outlines the synopsis of the project, the core of the macro idea. By organizing our ideas into a unified document, progress and focus of development is much easier. This document makes it easier for programmers and artists to directly focus on important core aspects of the game, instead of development happening in an erratic and possibly detrimental sequence.

By working together with the community, our ideas can be refined to lay out a very clear path of development, resulting in a better product. With proper planning, our budget can be spent on the important aspects of the project. With dedicated developers and with proper funding, developers could be provided all the hardware and software necessary to work on what it is they need or want to in order to get this game into a playable Alpha state. This could be Adobe (Photoshop/Premiere) or Allegorithmic (Substance Painter/Designer) or a computer capable of running those programs, VR, or servers. Once all hardware and software needs are met, individuals could start receiving payment for their hard work.

Key Elements

The Fleet

Essentially for the beginning of the development of the game, and for the future of the game, it is part of a fleet of ships. This fleet is made up of an assortment of vessels.

Mothership / Generation Ship

Max size under 20KM

A generation ship is a huge ship with a “slice of earth” contained inside. This could be reminiscent of a place on Earth or some artificial landscape. The primary benefit of this is to limit the playable area, which will allow us to develop multiple environment settings and achieve exceptional aesthetics and immersion with those specific settings–such as developing stormy weather or creating a combat arena.

Biome Ship

Max size under 2KM

These ships will be smaller versions of the generation ships, and likely the first to be developed since they’re smaller and easier to model. A smaller area to develop and aim for successful implementation of features. Will appeal to combat, making new ‘maps’ quicker with the limited size, while still appealing to all single-player vehicles.

Combat Ships

Not a primary focus due to our focus of limiting game development to ground based combat initially. There’s plenty of other space games around right now, it’d be silly to pursue making another one. If someone wanted to develop the space game aspects of this game, and were able to get art assets made for it, there’d be no opposition to that. However, it’s not a focus of initial development.

Faction/Guild/Clan Ships

Not a primary focus due to it being planned for a later date. We want to keep focus on the ground based aspects of gameplay.

Player Equipment/Vehicles

Equipment accessible to players.

Vehicles – Walking/Mechs

Max size under 20M – Max weight 200 tons

Mechs are classified as being piloted from a ‘chamber’ where the players limbs are not inside the mech’s limbs. Such as mechs from Battletech, Macross, Armored Core, and Phantom Crash.

Vehicles – Wheels/Treads/Hover

Max size under 6M – Max weight 100 tons

These are not mechs but traditional vehicles. They do not possess the torso of a mech or piloting method of a mech. These could be tanks, half-tracks, semi-trucks, cars, etc. They can be using wheels, treads, or hovering technology.

Exosuits/Elementals

Max size under 3M – Max weight N/A

These are characterized by being worn like “armor” that enhance a human’s capability and provide a significant boost to resilience and armament. The player’s limbs are within the limbs of the exosuit. They could help with cargo relocation or with combat. They’d be very utilitarian.

Suits/Space Suits

Max size no larger than a bulky space suit.

These are suits that a person would wear in a zero gravity environment, but not quite large enough to be considered exosuits. You could compare it to suits similar to that of Dead Space with a possibility of modifications to be heavier, but still largely contingent on the power of t the human wearing it.

Weaponry

A section specific to weaponry.

Handheld

This could be pistols, rifles, shotguns, rocket launchers, laser rifles, sonic cannons, disc launchers, bolters, lightning guns, stake guns, glue launchers, grenade launchers, etc.

Exosuit

This could be the same as handheld weaponry, just larger versions. Also could include large more ‘artillery’ or ‘heavy’ weapon-like items–additionally large machine guns, cannons, power claws, etc.

Vehicle

No limits here. If it’s in an anime/cartoon, video game, book, movie, anything, it should be available. Within reason. Let’s test the limits.

Concepts

Unsorted ideas, likely need refinement before placing in proper category.

If you have an idea and you can’t figure out where to sort it, place it under here and we’ll get it figured out as the document grows.

Programs/Plugins to Consider

Voxel Terrain Generator: https://www.voxelfarm.com/index.html
Allows for creating of voxel terrains including buildings. Fully destructible environments.

Terrain:

Terrain could be designed to work in a few different ways and deciding on the right one will take some time.

Deformable Terrain – terrain that can be deformed through actions such as digging for intention shaping or through combat with explosions.
    Pros: Allows for complete customization, planning actions based on destroyable terrain (blowing a hole in a wall), dynamic environments that’d change over time, etc.

    Cons: You may not want to allow people to burrow a hole through a ship or a mount to cheese getting to an objective. Being able to completely circumvent installations defense is dangerous as you’d not be able to defend against it. This is a very bad thing for player bases as it results in players losing a lot of stuff they’ve worked for with very little effort to the enemy. In Space Engineers it is very troublesome to build a scenario or defend a base and not have someone completely circumvent your defenses merely from burrowing a tunnel.

Fix Terrain – should base building be a prominent feature, it might be less than ideal to have fixed terrain, but it could be mitigated by providing methods to creating a solid framework/foundation. A good example of fixed terrain with building and it working out well would be Fallout 4.

Technology:

In short, Battletech and extras. I’m presently not limiting creativity, but some ideas aren’t acceptable for the masses. Giant lasers that kill swathes of enemies in space like Gundam aren’t acceptable. Mac cannons from Halo, could be acceptable however.

Battletech’s technology is advanced, but it feels believable as we already have modern relatable technology in many aspects.

Railgun tech will be more advanced and not limited to exclusively gauss rifle style weapons. They come at the cost of more power for not having propellant like gunpowder, but there’s still valid reasons to have both. If you can realistically justify a reason for a certain design or piece of technology you’re designing, then it’ll be up for consideration.

Mechs

Take the over-all lumbering design of the mechs, will have the realistic feel of Battletech/Mechwarrior. They’re giant hunks of metal, they can’t be super fast. (unless it’s a light mech meant to be fast)

The customizability should be on par with Phantom Crash. Changing legs, torso, arms, shoulder weapons, etc. It should ideally be made to be comfortably played with a controller as with a mouse/keyboard.

Phantom Crash is a good example of customizability being balanced. Light vs heavy weapons having their perks without much actually changing DPS wise.

Battletech is a good example of the speed and tech that seems more entertaining and balanced.

Species:

The Hungering Dark. Bipedal lupine-like creatures in a state of malnourishment and degradation, until they feed/leech away the nutrients/resources they need in order to empower themselves to what they had been before. Their society/culture long ago fell upon the chance of obtaining a potent and life changing technology, which led to their current state of having to devour other worlds for sustenance in order to survive and become strong like they once were.  The leader of the culture is called The Grand Mother.  Anti-Matter technology? Colors: Black, Faded Military Green, Yellow, Gun Metal Gray.

Lore

Prelude

Mankind has always been a species driven by curiosity, expansion, science, and war. Early in the 2000 AD millennium of Earth’s existence, a terrible apocalypse occurred, at least that is how it is referred to. It was a terrible event that killed over half the population. It was brought forth due to religion and general hatred as mankind is so fond of. One group didn’t like another, one nuked another, all out war started, technological advancement ceased, people died and eventually, mankind moved on. 

Eventually humanity recovered and prospered unlike ever before. Religion was not as important in everyday activities, it was not something you’d swear on, it was merely a tool to teach mankind and their children how to be people and to respect one another.

The rest of the millennium was abound with  astonishing technological advancements. Previous dreams and ideas became reality. Concepts such as nanotechnology and alternative power sources and flying cars all came to fruition. Money became more of an extraneous commodity that wasn’t completely necessary, and all necessities for a decent quality of life were had by all.. 

There were no third world countries or communities fraught with strife. Everyone was provided the basics to survive, and given the opportunity to be a successful member of Earth’s society as a whole. Space became a fascination for all the world’s population. Spacecraft for space-faring endeavours were imagined and just as rapidly created. The moon was the first goal, and quickly did it become scattered with many metropoli. The “ladder” to space became a reality and aided with the construction of more resilient and powerful spacecraft. Within years Mars was in the early stages of colonization, which drove more powerful engines to be created to shorten the time to travel between the two planets. Light travel came to invention and the colonization of Mars quickly became a simple task. The rest of mankind’s solar system, Sol, quickly became colonized within its spatial limits.

For a century mankind continued to grow its population, expand its knowledge of the universe, build more fantastic creations to explore the stars, but never had a human soul actually left the solar system they called home. The trips between solar systems would be too great, but that didn’t stop them from sending probes. A rigorous battle of the minds ensued for trying to find ways to achieve practical interstellar travel. To no avail were mankind able to find a method to travel faster and farther with ease.

After a half century, by an accident of engineering, it happened: the speed of light had been surpassed. That is to say, a man made ship, traveling faster than light itself. This accident however brought more than just the knowledge of how to break the cosmic speed limit of light, it also brought forth visitors from outside the solar system. 

An alien species that had long kept an eye on mankind, and aided with its initial development, had finally approached mankind with the most generous of offers: to join ranks with a small alliance of aliens species for the benefit of all involved. The ingenuity of mankind astonished the other species, as they had reached such a level of technological advancement so rapidly without direct assistance. (Required: four alien species to be designed in all aspects)

Another half century passed as mankind incorporated the alien technology into their own. Soon mankind and their new allies were technologically equal. Each had their own flair to their designs, but all saw the same purpose. This new alliance was soon established and called the Spiral Affinity, named after being on only a small section of a spiral arm of the Milky Way Galaxy.

Mankind,with its inherent exploratory nature, grew tired of only knowing such a small section of the galaxy and not having much area to expand. With their new technology and drive to expand, they began construction of a massive colony fleet of two massive class, twelve medium class colony vessels, accompanied by two large class, six medium class, and twelve small military vessels. This fleet (Required: Name of fleet) was one of a kind, none mankind’s allies had attempted it before, it was meant to go towards the center of the galaxy, where solar systems were closer, to aid with the expansion of mankind.

As the fleet neared completion of the final ships, it began crewing all fleet ships to full launch capacity (Required: This number will be determined after the military ships and colony ships reach final design. I expect the population to be quite a bit higher than the population of the Macross 7 fleet.) The population consisted mostly of humans, but many of the other species joined, to make sure to be a part of the momentous occasion. After completion and tests of all ships, the fleet embarked on its mission.

Years passed as the fleet continued its advance, however to their dismay, they hadn’t encountered anything of note. Few alien species were encountered, most not of their own technological level. No attempt was made to make friends, only to assure the acquaintances that they were not hostile. They neared the halfway mark and things became worse as the aliens became more hostile. Small raids attacked the vessels, all driven off without much effort.

Then the fleet came to the most peculiar solar system (Required: All planets, the star, the moons, everything needs to be named. This will be decided by people who donate). There was a dim star in the middle, an array of planets in an order of small, medium, large, medium, small, all of which were accompanied by at least a single moon and a ring, mechanical ring going around the entire circular plane of the solar system. 

The outside of the ring had a purple strip that went all the way around the middle, which faintly glowed. Upon further inspection it appeared to be a thick transparent glass-like canopy with a purple liquid inside. However, no vessels could land on the massive ring, as it had an immense field of energy that prevented any landing attempts. The inside of the ring had many panels, that were for the most part closed, except for a section that started small, became large, and the shrunk again. 

This section of panels was constantly moving in the same direction as the star in the middle. Within the panels that were open was an intense light and heat, akin to a star. It radiated a bit more energy than the star and made the space between the star and this ring a near perfectly ideal temperature, however within the middle on the largest planet roughly the size of Jupiter, it was excessively hot–similar to the heat on the surface of Mercury or Venus. The planet was most peculiar, in that it was marbled with faint purples, light yellows, dark browns, and veins of black as dark as the void. The purple however was most intriguing.. A sight of its calibur had not yet been seen on any of the planets in any of the solar systems in situ to this system.

Out of curiosity the fleet positioned itself within the ring, about half-way between the ring and the planet. As they neared, they realized the planet had a thick layer of debris in orbit. It was composed of varying materials, shapes and designs. A scouting team that was sent out to investigate approached the apparent debris field and began wondering if the field was just debris, it was hard to tell with the sheer amount of particulates and objects. 

Upon entering the field, the whole area sprang to life with an assembly of various ships, if you could call them that, with one mission: to excise the scouting fleet from their proximity. Suddenly barraged by an array of various forms of weaponry, the fleet readied for a counterattack, but the fleet could not have anticipated what was to come.

Over the course of a couple years the fleet fiercely battled with the defending automatons, however the fleet had one advantage: it could retreat, regroup and rearm, since the automatons would retreat to the debris field after a certain distance had been established between them. The fleet was determined to approach the planet as all the alien vessels had some form or another of the same purple liquid that was in the ring around the solar system. 

It was obvious this planet had some sort of significant value, especially with such a large trap defending it. Finally the fleet emerged victorious over the dwindling population of automatons. The fleet approached and began investigating the debris field, using what they could to repair and rearm themselves. 

The purple liquid now known as Murex, as well as various alien technologies and materials, all underwent scrupulous investigation to establish what they may expect to run into in the future. The fleet’s best scientists could not determine why Murex was seemingly in everything, and why the planet was so heavily defended. Quickly it was discovered that the debris field consisted of objects merely a few years old to objects that were thought to be many millennia old.

The fleet’s interest was piqued increasingly as their investigations continued. Finally, after what they were able to reverse engineer through what they scavenged, they had developed new weapons, a new fuel source, and much more–all thanks to this mysterious Murex, which was still of unknown origins. 

The fleet set up a landing party to land on the planet. As they approached, the planet’s environment quickly became hostile as they neared its surface. The temperature was severe, it would be dangerous to go outside without the proper protective suits. There was absolutely no sign of water, at least on the surface, and the sand dunes stretched for thousands of miles. Small sections of rocky terrain dotted the landscape. (If you couldn’t tell by now, the planet is very reminiscent of Arrakis from the series Dune. Albeit a lot more dangerous.)

A large mountain was discovered, with a massive hole on one side of that looked like a perfect place to set up camp. Upon entering the cave it went down at an angle for a very long distance. Eventually the cave opened up to a huge domed area, most likely where the magma chamber had been. The area was quickly decided to be the initial area to set up camp. Being so far under the surface, the temperature was much more bearable. The thick hard stone provided ample protection from possible threats, and the single entrance provided an excellent area to focus their defenses.

Over the course of a few months the base camp had been expanded upon, its population now in the thousands. Research on the planet’s composition was the main focus. The fleet in orbit began operations to acquire, refine and expand on what resources were presented to them. The second large colony ship along with a few other smaller ships, accompanied by a third of the military, began to explore the other planets and moons in this system. 

Over the course of a year the other planets were inhabited with small colonies. The Murex was found to contain immense energy in various forms and extremely adaptable to various uses. The debris field remained under constant cleanup, and the purple planet was as hostile as ever. This solar system appeared to have endured a large scale war. No one is sure how many times a war had occured in this alien spacescape, but by some accounts it appeared to have been nearly perpetual. One thing was for sure however, whatever happened was bound to happen again.

Chapter One

A fleet-wide campaign was declared, to which many young men and women joined ranks. The premise was to expand the foothold on the purple planet and to find out how to acquire more of Murex–and to find out why war was such a prominent occurrence within this solar system. 

An orbital space station was set up around the purple planet, it was positioned constantly above the colony on the planet. A series of mass-driver cannons provided quick transport of material between the the surface and station. A series of ziline-like lines ran from the station towards the surface, these were used to provide transportation to and from the surface of the planet. For groups of expeditioners to go further out, drop pods were designed to provide deeper desert operations. The pods could be recovered if the group that left in it or a salvage crew on the surface was able to recover the pod.

Plot Elements

The plot develops hugely in part from the decisions made by the players. Events will take place on an ‘as decided’ basis. Elements presented would affect the state of the fleet and what is available to players.

For example: if the players are presented with an event in which everyone participates, where hostile aliens arrive to try to destroy the fleet in space,and they successfully defend the fleet–then nothing would visibly change. Demand on resources would raise to repair damages, however players maintain access to everything they had. However, should players fail to defend a ship, say the arena ship, then the players that prefer to do arena combat would be unable to do so, on that ship at least, until the ship is restored through players providing the resources to rebuild it.

Many events will occur, but exact elements are presently undetermined.

Cutscenes

Cut scenes will be sparse, but all of them will preferably be with in-game graphics, instead of rendered video. Cut scenes may be used in situations of transit or other key or redundant situations.

Game World

To better understand the progression of the game regarding development, it is being broken into acts. These acts or stages of development will be when key components are added to the game, that changes the game towards the release product.

The player characters are generated by the player, so a lot of the information regarding them is generated by the player. However mechanics may be added to make the character more of a part the universe from generation, rather than the player determining all of their information.

General Look and Feel

For the beginning of the games development, the game will appear very hopeful and where everything is just going right. After the game gets to the stage where it is in orbit of the planet, things will turn a bit darker, but hope will be ever present, at least to some degree.

Act I

The beginning of production will be focused on the colony ships. The illusion behind this is that the player is in transit to their destination. For the first act the whole focus will be to get solid base mechanics, like movement, combat, vehicle control. For the sake of simplicity, Act I will consist of a PvP environment.

Act II

As we move to the next stage of development, we’ll begin messing with vehicles and AI. Vehicles will preferably consist at least one of each style; mechs, power-armor, exo-suits, tanks, aircraft, spacecraft, etc. With the development of the AI, this will begin to introduce the PvE environment to the players. As the game is so focused around PvE, the focus for the AI will be to make it a challenge to compete against to the point of it feels like PvP and even more difficult during certain circumstances.

Act III

This stage of development will be further refining and adding of equipment, vehicles, weaponry, etc. We could see the addition of tons of modular equipment pieces being added at this stage, to at least act as filler roles to work out the various mechanics.

Act IV

Next we can expect to see a proper event system. Players respond to a hostile threat and succeed or fail and work out the various mechanics for one or the other happening. This stage may also see a huge focus on space combat, to better play into the event system.

Act V

Further acts and specifics to be determined as progress is made.

Characters

Majority of the game will consist primarily of players. They should eventually fill as many roles as possible. Through various other games, players effectively ran shops and transit services and other similarly ‘mundane’ tasks and quite enjoyed their role.

Main Character

The player character will mostly be viewed as a civilian taking up arms to do what is needed to be done, for the good of the fleet and all.

Backstory

The backstory of individual characters would be ‘made up’ by the player. A biography would be available to the player to expanded upon to make their character unique. Due to there being no classes or anything that would lock a player into any role and that a player has access to so few character slots, if any, this would further encourage a character to develop their story.

As the game progresses, information could be added to their biography for various events. For example if they participated in a long fight to save the fleet in space, a section would be added to their biography and then the player could elaborate on it if they so choose.

Personality

A player’s personality is their characters personality. It will all be taken into account of what it is they do. If a player continues to act negatively towards other players, it would appear on sort of a rap sheet. So if a player were looking for an escort and performed a background check on the players, he could find out who’s trustworthy and who is not.

Look

Largely determined by the player. However, some events or decisions could permanently influence a player’s look. Clothing and hair, could easily be changeable through shops. Through the modular design of equipment and the ability to ‘paint’ their equipment, you could see very fantastic costumes.

NPCs

The presence of useful NPCs will be quite low. The general idea is that there will be no quest giving NPCs, following in suit that beyond world events, there won’t be quests.

Generally there will be shopkeeper and auction house NPC’s and some others, as those would seem to be unfavorable player ran roles.

Beyond that, the NPCs that will be present will fill the role of general populace and have no significant role, at least in the beginning. There could be a population counter added as a mechanic and present the players with an idea of how dire certain situations are. If players saw a massive drop of population, it would normally be due to inability to defend a proper city or colony ship. The effects of this are still up in the air, but the players would be effected in various ways. Lack of readily available equipment or staff could be side-effect.