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An RPG, RTS, and sandbox space exploration game all-in-one.  Explore, trade, build, and fight in a beautiful, procedural universe.
An RPG, RTS, and sandbox space exploration game all-in-one. Explore, trade, build, and fight in a beautiful, procedural universe.
5,449 backers pledged $187,865 to help bring this project to life.

Development Update #7: July 2013

Posted by Josh Parnell (Creator)

Hey everyone!  Sorry for the late update today.  Here's the story to which I'm sticking: lately I've been working in Linux as my primary development environment.  Sadly, when I went to build and run LT on Windows to capture the video, I realized (all too late) that the Windows build had decided to work itself into some serious breakage.  After throwing away an hour or so realizing how much of a dead-end video capture on Linux is, I had to spend quite a while rescuing the poor Windows build.  In the end it survived and I'm expecting a full recovery :)

The Video.

Let's face it, I'm always apologizing for something.  Last month it was the voice.  This month I made sure to get some sleep and even ordered a better microphone to make sure the vocals were top notch.  Too bad I got the length wrong -.- One of these days.  I'll get it all right.

Watch the Video Here!

The Summary.

As mentioned in the video, a homeward visit and a westward foray to a graphics conference both managed to steal a great deal of time from me this month.  Nonetheless, the simulation architecture has seen a great deal of new clarity - clarity which will make the implementation that much simpler.

A last-minute (literally) graphics sprint introduced more kinds of atmospheric scattering, water, and some ragtag trees into the planetary mix, and these kinds of luxuries are only going to get better with age!

  • Even more conceptual revelations related to level-of-detail universe simulation - leading to clean and unified design!!
  • Made significant progress with the "real" AI algorithm
  • Implemented water for planet surfaces
  • Implemented atmospheric scattering for planet surfaces
  • Full Mac Port

And now...let's review what we've gained this month (in witty, trivialized form)...

50% More Compatibility!

This month we welcome OS X, the newest member to the Limit Theory-compatible family of operating systems!  With both the Mac and Linux ports behind us, the multi-platform stretch goal can already be crossed off the list!

[ This is where I would place an Apple logo if I weren't afraid of lawsuits! ]

100% More Atmospheric Scattering!

Sure, we had space-to-ground scattering.  But it was just  If things are going to work out here, we need a two-way relationship.

(Click for Full)

∞% More Water!

Because sometimes, solid rock just isn't enough.

(Click for Full)


Sure, it may have looked like slow times there for a bit...but make no mistake, the tides of war are turning.  The armies of architectural problems are falling one-by-one to the glistening swords of thought.  We will steal the day yet, my friends, as we march into these lovely sunsets with our high-tech stallions of space.

No but seriously.  It's a fun ride.  We've a ways to go yet, but no problem thus far has proven unsolvable! :)


Samir Zaarur and Felewin like this update.


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    1. Max Shields on

      I love where you're going with the history simulation. I think it shows much promise and will yield a far richer gameplay experience than simply relying on procedural generation of events. Keep it up!

    2. Keith Z-G on

      As a Linux user, I'm not too worried about the Windows build being broken ;) but that jibe aside, very interesting to hear about the background simulation development. Lack of shinyness be damned, it sounds extremely cool, and I know I for one would be quite happy to hear more about those kinds of "invisible" developments in the future.

    3. Nikki on

      i was concerned it was going to suffer from the random factor but if you can generate the history of the universe in a realistic way. wow welcome to the future :D

    4. Missing avatar

      Ni ! on

      Oh my, this is simply amazing. I knew this will be a great thing, but I'm even more amazed with every new update. Clearly my favourite KCKST I backed so far.. Thanks for the updates and good luck, Josh

    5. Noah Wexo on

      Great work, as everyone else has already indicated. And I applaud your witticisms in the text. "Glistening swords of thought" -- I'll have to remember that one.

    6. Dan Ormond on

      Beautiful! Amazing work, Josh. Thanks so much for the update! :)

    7. Willem on

      Amazing as always. I felt so sad that we won't be able to just fly about on the planetary surfaces and explore/do battles on them! I know of course that's not what was promised as part of the first game :); but hey with LT2 who knows! Thanks for the update Josh, it is looking great thus far; keep up the great work!

    8. The Arrow on

      Damn, I wish I had upped to the prototype-level pledge, because I so want to play with this!

    9. TanC on

      Progress is still progress even though we do not see it. Nice update and explanation of the abstract work you're doing! The microphone investment is working well too. :)

    10. charnode on

      Thanks Josh. Now I wish there were ancient relics on planets you can discover, explore and gain bonuses from.

    11. Mark Newcombe on

      Brilliant update Josh, Love the background on the simulation.
      Nice call on the fifth digit of the Square root of Three by the way :-)

    12. Missing avatar

      Casuals on

      This looks absolutely amazeballs. Keep up the great work!

    13. Jalister on

      As usual, another good update. I'm glad things are moving along nicely. Unfortunately I need to get some work done before watching the video.

    14. Silver on

      Nice going, thanks for the update. I like the possibilities the simulation aspect offers across the game's universe as well! :)

    15. AGN1964 on

      Hey, it looks great.

      Here's a boring question. Anyone know when this will be released? Do we have a better estimate than Jan 2014? I'm only looking for a rough estimate; I expect dates to change.

    16. Flatfingers on

      Looking amazing for the time invested so far. How much better can this possibly get?

      The simulation geek in me, of course, wants to know if worlds will have ground appearances based on weather/atmosphere/hydrosphere, and whether the chemical composition of a world's atmosphere (as well as particulates and liquid vapor) will affect its color.

      Yeah, the sim-geek is just loads of fun at parties. :)

      Great work as always -- thanks for sharing this!

    17. Kahuna Kevin on

      And please enable city-to-city or destination-to-destination interplanetary travel: Full takeoff, flight and landing sequences.

    18. Kahuna Kevin on

      Instead of fading to black when landing on planets, PLEASE display the following...

      Atmospheric Entry:
      -Longer cut-scene with the ship getting closer to the planet surface.
      -Atmospheric entry effects (violent camera shaking, audio) with fire alongside the front/underside/sides of the ship.
      -Fade to white as the atmosphere entry flames become hotter and brighter.

      Planet Entry:
      -Start the planet entry scene at a much higher altitude.
      -Level off the the fire and camera shake to a steady landing speed/trajectory.
      -Enable some kind of hydraulic stabilizing panels that animate and stick out from the sides/top of ship to reduce speed (similar to when a jet lands and the flaps are up).
      -Full-sequence flight cut-scene to the destination (w/ skip option). This will still give us the feel of planet surface flight without the need for you to worry about the headaches of free-roaming flight!
      -Landing sequence scene, at destination.

    19. mikkonator on

      Hey what's your new bro up to? I would love to see development thoughts/progress on the ship/space station design, or anything graphic like that.

    20. Missing avatar

      Matt Clark on

      What program were you trying to use in linux? It REALLY depends on the distro, but I've had good luck with Kazam for screen capture. Probably the best option if you can get into it is avconv (part of the ffmpeg bundle that "converts" one format to another, to use it for this you have the "source file" be the xvideo, etc...). It's complicated, but has fantastic performance!

    21. gandalf.nho

      Looking very nice

    22. Kahuna Kevin on

      My god... it's full of RAD!

    23. Josh Parnell Creator on

      @Federico - Well, there is currently no released Mac version. Although I've spoken of an LTP 2.0, I can't promise that the next release will be on Mac as well. However, I will try, because I do want to get it into the hands of our Mac backers ASAP. Stay tuned to see what the next release of LTP brings.

    24. Federico Caputo on

      Apart from the consideration that I've seen finished multimillion dollar projects be a fraction of the coolness and polishness (let's pretend it's a word...) of this prototype (and that includes the demo free roaming showoff thingy), I have one practical question: where can we alphaers download the Mac version??? I've been dying to run this thing! :)