This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Tue, June 18 2019 11:22 AM UTC +00:00.
Our goal is a totally new approach to the way computer games are developed.
What if you could create a game in an intuitive visual way by teaching the computer how the virtual world you want to create looks and behaves? What if you could evolve the appearance and the behavior of enemy spaceships for a space shooter without programming? What if you could share or even sell the games you have created?
Our vision is to build an online social platform around the EvoCell Universe Creator: an intuitive game editor that allows gamers to become game makers themselves. You can create your own games quickly and easily and share them on our online social platform. You get feedback from other gamers, and maybe this motivates you to put some extra effort into it to make an extended version of the game? Maybe even sell your own game? Or get inspired and modify or extend games created by other gamers.
New worlds are created with just a few clicks in the visual editor - without any programming - hence the name EvoCell Universe Creator. A powerful assistant takes care of the actual programming work allowing users to focus on the creative aspects of game development. Ideal for mobile mini games and desktop targets alike, games created with the EvoCell Universe Creator will be compatible with all common platforms: Android, iOS or any given web browser.
But the fun does not stop with games. EvoCell Universe Creator is also ideal for creating interactive art, visualizing music and other creative applications. We are sure that gamers, artists and creatives will find many more use cases for our platform.
Creating games with the EvoCell Universe Creator
With our EvoCell Universe Creator we present a radically new way to create computer games. Our platform enables you to create your own cross-platform innovative games without any programming experience at all. Instead of programming the enemy AI, and instead of programming what happens when the player hits the wall, and instead of moving the characters around on the screen we asked: What if the pixels themselves could embody the physics or the enemy AI? How can we make the pixels live?
We found an answer to this question in a powerful concept called cellular automata. It is an alternative computing paradigm that is inherently parallel and is inspired by the way biological cells interact and grow.
Thanks to this the games created with our editor feel real and alive and it is possible to change every little detail of the game very quickly and easily.
EvoCell Space Saga action game
EvoCell Space Saga is a highly innovative computer game that stimulates the creativity of the players themselves. It also serves as an entertaining demonstration of the performance and potential of EvoCell Universe Creator.
The game is an inspiring combination of Space Shooter, Jump´n´Run and RPG. The game can be played in a story based single-player mode as well as an open universe multi-player mode. The pixel precise physics engine of EvoCell Space Saga creates a living universe and allows the creation of new effects never before seen on a screen. Dynamic collisions, interactive landscapes and even the enemy AI are generated procedurally by a physics and AI engine that was inspired by biological cellular processes. EvoCell Space Saga is created in the EvoCell Universe Creator and can, therefore, be edited by the players themselves.
A very early version of the space shooter you can already test in your browser!
- cursor keys: move spaceship
- space: fire!
- escape: pause/menu
- one finger: move spaceship
- two fingers: move & fire!
We would love to get feedback and comments! :)
What we already have
We have been working on the cellular automaton engine and the game editor for the last 4 years. During that time we learned how to work together as a team effectively and we also were able to get some public funding to help us through the early stages of the development process:
- We have finished the WebGL based cellular automaton engine that allows the games to be run on many different platforms. The engine is heavily optimized and does not use any external libraries for the core parts to ensure good performance of the games.
- A rough but totally useable flow-based visual editor
- A large number of modules that can be used in the editor to create games
- A playable early version of EvoCell Space Saga game
- Simple multiplayer support for the games created with the editor
- A minimal viable prototype of the social online platform that will host the game editor
So we have the main ingredients and now we want to present our idea to the world and get support from YOU by backing one of our perks. You can support us by backing one of our perks.
What we offer
If you are curious to try the game editor as soon as possible we invite you to participate in our EvoCell Universe Creator beta program. You will get access to the game editor and you can help us by giving us feedback about your experience and thereby help us to improve the usability of the editor. We are also very interested in your ideas on what additional features we should include. We can't promise to implement all your ideas but we promise to share our development progress. If you participate in the EvoCell Universe Creator beta proramm you also get early access to the EvoCell Space Saga action game.
If you don't care about the development so much but just want to play the finished version of EvoCell Space Saga we have a perk for you as well
What we intend to do with the money
- Finish the single-player version of EvoCell Space Saga
- Implement the multi-player version of EvoCell Space Saga
- Implement 3D rendering for the games
- Improve the usability of the EvoCell Universe Creator game editor especially the scene management
- Implement new modules for the editor to allow networked multi-player games
- Create an integrated tutorial to make it easy to learn how to use the EvoCell Universe Creator to evolve cellular Automata and create games
- Add more features to the social online platform
- Develop a Unity3D plugin to be able to embed EvoCell content in Unity3D
Insight into EvoCell's innovative technology
The EvoCell Universe Creator and the game engine behind it are based on so-called cellular automata. This is a mathematical model inspired by the growth and development of biological cells. In this way, living game entities can be simulated in the computer: the powerful mathematical model of cellular automata brings pixels to life. Thanks to pixel precise calculation of content, physical phenomena such as explosions, collisions and gravity are realistically simulated with a distinct, lifelike aesthetic. Even the behavior of enemies or end bosses can be driven by a cellular automata and can therefore be easily adjusted without programming. The EvoCell game universe works with an integrated and unique physical logic: Instead of script controlled enemies EvoCell games simulate the cellular behaviour of the opponents themselves. Using simple genetic algorithms exposed through an intuitive interface, users can breed cellular automata to get the desired behaviours. New universes with alternative physics can be created very quickly and used as the foundation of a new game. The results look very dynamic and interactive without any programming effort. With EvoCell Universe Creator, players are able to implement an existing game model according to their own ideas, or to create completely new game models from scratch. For example, an individualized space shooter can be created with just a few clicks - or a “Dungeon Explorer”, platformer, and so on. These models can then be extended by evolving and incorporating new cellular automata.
Cellular automata were invented in the 1950s and have been the topic of extensive research over the years, so there are many interesting cellular automata models available that we can use as ingredients for the games. Our online platform will also function as an encyclopedia of all the cellular automata that scientists have invented during the last 70 years.
Our engine is based on WebGL and therefore the games created with the EvoCell Universe Creator have good performance and are compatible with all popular platforms: Android, iPhone, Windows, Mac and Linux.
EvoCell Homepage (a stub for now, here we will host the social platform): http://evocell.net/
Our company - Wizards at Work GmbH: https://wizardsatwork.at/
Background information about cellular automata: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cellular_automaton
NoFlo (which is used in the EvoCell Universe Creator graphical editor): https://noflojs.org/
Risks and challenges
We have been developing this for three years so we know the ups and downs of software development. And we are very confident that we can deal with most common problems.
Since we already implemented the core cellular automaton WebGL engine and a useable editor we are sure that the game and the editor can be achieved technologically.
We want to use the Kickstarter project to find interested gamers and game makers who want to join in on the fun and help us to test ideas for the game and to polish the graphical editor.
Of course we also hope to raise some money to pay a fair amount to the people who are doing the actual work: programmers, designers, artists, team leaders and last but not least project managers.
Most probable risk is that the project takes longer than estimated. We have planned this very well and plan to provide first beta access to the editor by the end of the year. The completion of the game is scheduled for X-mas 2020. Regular project updates are taken for granted.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter