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Take control of an advanced starship with your friends in search of the mysterious Lost Colony (Windows, Mac and Linux)
1,729 backers pledged $55,422 to help bring this project to life.

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Beta 3 - Devlog 60 / Station Interiors

Posted by Leafy Games (Creator)
8 likes

Hello everyone! 

Devlog 60

 Beta 3 is out now! We spent a good chunk of the time doing various networking and crash tests to help us hunt down the reported issues. We think we’ve made some progress in this area and we’re interested to see if it helps. 

 Besides that, we spent our time working on a lot of the stations you can come across. You and your crew should now be able to board any station and explore it. Trading stations now sell/buy player items; just board the station and interact with the NPC!

Some stations can now be exploited if you choose to play that way. For example: a damaged ship can be repaired for free by teleporting aboard the repair depot, killing the operator, and manipulating the repair screen. However, this will increase chaos in the galaxy. We’d like to expand more upon this in the future. 

Additions 

-Teleportation screen now supports multiple targets in a single sector. It can now have multiple pages.
-Added support for out-of-order starmap syncing. This allows us to sync the closest sectors only and then sync the rest over time. We’re hoping that this helps with some disconnection issues that have been reported. Joining games should be quicker now too!
-Networking optimizations that should yield both faster syncing and less chance of disconnects on many connections
-Added a simple packet loss estimator in the overview menu to help identify connection strength for debugging purposes
-New Sector Type: Exotic Shop 4
-New Interior - Repair Depot
-New Interior - General Store
-New Interior - Long Range Warp Station
-New Interior - Exotic Shop 1
-New Interior - Exotic Shop 2
-New Interior - Exotic Shop 3
-New Interior - Exotic Shop 4
-New Interior - AOG Hideout 1
-New Interior - WD HUB (First pass)
-New Screen - Service - Ship Repair
-New Screen - Service - Warp Station Alignment
-Projectile turrets now have an aim assist function; this can be turned off through the auxiliary reactor screen. It has replaced the “Ship Security” option since it wasn’t implemented yet. 

Changes 

-Chaos difficulty boost is stronger
-The “Escape” key can exit typing in chat
-Tweaks to the Join Game menu, you can now arrange list in various ways
-Bindings system now has the ability to properly recognize multiple joysticks, this should allow proper setup for the X-55 flight control system
-General shops now sell and buy player items, players need to teleport to the shop to do so -Screens no longer collide with players
-Reactor screen power allocation should no longer be reset during warp
-Procedural face materials are temporarily disabled by default as we work on a more permanent solution to the warp and join crash. If you weren’t experiencing those issues, you can turn it back on in the video settings. 

Fixes 

-Fixed message error when loading a save game when the game name was in use
-”Hunt the Resolution” mission should now properly work
-Auto turrets can now be found in general stores
-Fixed an inventory issue that could occur on Artifact Planet II
-Updating the ship name from the tab menu will now update the save file name
-Interior lighting issue when on a “boarded ship” should now be accurate
-Fixed a slight culling issue on the W.D. Destroyer
-Weap Bot should now use turret on W.D. Destroyer
-Fixed a “double click” error when selecting a sector at a LRWS or repairing hull at a repair depot
-Fixed a linux text chat bug
-Fixed a potential crash on joining a game
-Fixed a potential crash when warping to a new sector
-Fixed a Roland culling issue
-Fixed a scanner glitch that would occur on snow mountain planets
-Fixed a level glitch that allowed players to exit the bounds of a Bandit Base
-Fixed some syncing errors with proximity mines / space scrap
-Fixed collision / visual issues with the spreadshot turret
-Fixed misaligned text in the NPC dialogue window 

 Known Issues
-Available at http://pulsarthegame.com/known-issues 

 Thanks for your time! 

 Best,
The Leafy Games Team

Beta 2 - Devlog 59 / W.D. Destroyer - Steam

Posted by Leafy Games (Creator)
8 likes

Hello everyone! Hope all is well!

Devlog 59

Steam Store Page: http://store.steampowered.com/app/252870 

First off, PULSAR: Lost Colony is now available for purchase on the Steam store as part of the Early Access program. We hope that you will welcome the new players as they learn all the details of PULSAR’s starship operation! 

The W.D. Destroyer has been introduced! We call it an “Armored Warship”. It is a combat focused vessel with a smaller interior than most of the current ships. It has a high armor rating and slightly increased turret damage, and it also features a layout that’s different from what many of you may be used to! 

We’ve also added some rare space sectors. These include black holes that engulf everything in the sector and damage ships that get too close. It’s best to just warp away as fast as possible to avoid being sucked into oblivion! Another new addition is nebulas, which greatly reduce the effectiveness of EM sensors. This can make finding and destroying ships much more difficult! We’ve also worked on a sector type that starts you inside an asteroid. Be sure to scavenge what scraps you can find in there! 

Thrusters have also had a lot of work done. We’ve added two more thruster types that handle rotational and omni-directional input. These add power requirements to all possible Pilot movement. This solves some problems that allowed Pilots to go faster without using additional power and gives Pilots more control in overall power usage. 

We’ve spent some time testing and made some balance changes to the game’s difficulty curve. Drones are overall a bit weaker. Many components have had changes to effectiveness. Sell prices have been tweaked, and repair depots are cheaper to use. However, chaos will still greatly affect enemies and increase the difficulty as the game progresses. We look forward to your feedback in this area. 

A new controls menu has been added. This allows players to rebind keys in-game without fiddling with the bindings file scripts and such. We’ve also added better support for setting up joysticks, and the in-game prompts (i.e. “R” to use laser turret) will now update based on the bindings. 

The Captain can now kick players. We will be paying close attention to community feedback and possibly making changes to this system to assure it has a positive effect for most players. In addition, the Captain can toggle or change the game’s password after it has been created. 

 We’ve also added some additional HUD text to explain a few of the more unique controls in PULSAR. This can be disabled in the Game Settings menu at any time. 

Ship damage numbers are now displayed next to enemies. This can also be disabled in the Game Settings menu. 

Also check out the in-game manual and credits. We’ve added to the credits all the Kickstarter backers who have submitted names through our pledge manager. 

The save game file format has been edited so previous saves will not be compatible. This is because we added new ship components (rotational and maneuvering thrusters), and we also found a bug with destroyed ships not staying destroyed. We’ll try our best not to update the format frequently in the future, but it’s one of the downsides to being in development. 

 As always we look forward to your feedback! 

We hope you enjoy the update! 

Additions

-New Ship: W.D. Destroyer (Armored Warship)
-New Sector Type: Black Hole
-New Sector Type: Nebula / EM Storm
-New Sector Type: Asteroid Interior
-New Planet (with Mission): Artifact Planet 2
-New Component Type: Rotational Thruster
-New Component Type: Maneuver Thruster
-New Component Type: Auto Turret
-The Captain can now kick players (other than the host) from the game
-The Captain can now add, edit or remove the game’s password after the game is started in the overview menu
-New Controls menu that allows players to edit key bindings in-game
-In-game manual added to main / pause menu
-Credits are now viewable from the main menu
-Ship Components menu can now show full ship stats
-Added some in-game controls help text that can be toggled in the game settings menu
-Added ship damage numbers that can be toggled in the game settings menu
-We’ve improved and re-added our ship room culling system. This is something we’ll be improving over the entire course of development.
-The Captain can jettison cargo from the ship in any sector. They are destroyed right now, but in the future we want to have them visible in space. 

Balance 

-Crews now start with 10000 credits instead of 2500
-W.D. Drones are a bit weaker overall -Missile and turret damage have been tweaked / reduced
-Hull repair now costs less than before (about a 30% reduction in price)
-Selling components to shops will now give more credits than before
-Tweaked how enemy ships upgrade themselves when chaos levels increase. They shouldn’t get as powerful as before.
-Enemy crewed ships are slightly more rare. They also have the ability to use mega turrets, so watch out! Changes
-Ship rotation speed is no longer determined from Max Thrust. Instead a specialized component (rotational thruster) determines rotation speed.
-Ship omni-directional translation is no longer determined from Max Thrust. Instead a specialized component (Maneuver Thruster) determines omni-directional translation speed.
-Proximity mines can be shot down with a turret
-Added a character limit to ship names (25)
-Added a text popup when in range of piloting screen
-The Airlock can now be used to dump components while not in range of a shop
-Both asteroid and graveyard sectors are now farther away from where players ships arrive. This should help with the occasional “warp into asteroid mesh” or “instant kill via proximity mine”. Those aren’t fun.
-Roland now has 4 auto turrets placed upon the belly of the ship. 

Fixes 

-Ship name should dynamically update on the join game menu when the Captain changes the name in-game
-Ship type name should properly update when a new ship is captured on the join game menu
-Fixed scaling issue with Infected minefields
-Fixed issue with Infected Carrier AI
-Fixed Sun Shafts
-Fixed issue that could cause shops, missions, and planets to appear in starting Infected space
-Fixed an issues that could spawn a sand shark on top of the terraforming station on Mueva 7, also fixed a collision issue.
-Fixed bug that caused AI Weapon Specialists to not start with Advanced Operator talent, this now means enemy crewed ships will have access to their mega turrets and missiles… good luck!
-Fixed bug that caused enemy crews collision errors when navigating some ships
-Fixed issue that could cause ships to begin the game not fully booted / started
-Fixed issue that could cause some stuttering in-game once per second
-PiBot can now be selected from the AI Priorities menu
-Fixed some spelling mistakes for the Phalanx virus
-Saves now handle destroyed ships properly. New save file format is required.
-”Objective Completed” message should now show on host
-Roland now drops credits on destruction 

 Known Issues 

-Some issues have been seen with crew bot networking
-Some audio crackling has been observed
-Bandits will sometimes not spawn / fall through the level on certain planets
-Space scrap is sometimes not visible
-Some isolated issues with disconnections from the Photon Cloud
-When playing on or fighting against the W.D. Destroyer, music doesn’t play properly 

Thanks for your time! 

 Best,
The Leafy Games Team

Beta 1 - Devlog 58 / Roland-Class Starship

Posted by Leafy Games (Creator)
7 likes

Hey everyone!

Today we are releasing Beta 1!

To clarify: Beta is where the majority of PULSAR’s content will be added, systems and mechanics we didn’t consider to be “core” will also be added, and all of the game’s current systems will continue to be improved as development continues! Hope that’s clear, we'll be happy to answer any questions about why we are going this route if there are any!

Devlog 58

So first off there is a new ship to fly! The C.U. Roland-Class Starship! You can see some footage of what it looks like in Devlog 58. We've added an inherent ship qualities system to the game, we think this will be a really useful way to not only differentiate all of the ships we plan to have, but also help balance them. Games names are now separated from ship names, pretty straight forward.

We took some time to sit down and actually play the game for fun (not testing) these past few weeks and we came to the same conclusion a lot of you came to as well, the game is far too easy. We took some early steps to correct this issues by having stronger enemies, and slowing ship progression by having ships drop weaker / less loot at the beginning. We still have a ton of plans to help bring a nice bit of challenge to the game and help its pace, but we hope the changes we've made are beginning to go in the right direction.

We've also changed the save file format, since we are now going to be adding more content to the game, this will inherently change how galaxies are generated, we are hoping the new format will keep a much data as possible pertaining to your ship and crew while leaving the galaxy room to grow and change when new versions are released.

A new optional game mode has been added: Ironman mode. This will cause your active save file to be deleted upon ship destruction. We will be working on making this system stable and functional over the next few updates! As usual, any feedback or bug reports are greatly appreciated.

We were planning on having a nice number of AI improvements to this build but we lost a bit of time assembling a new trailer for the game. We focused on improving the two biggest complaints which were Pilots not lining up and engineers preventing shields being lowered. Keep in mind the AI still has a ton of work to do before we are happy with it.

Thanks again for all of the bug reports and feedback that you have been sending in. We couldn't do this game without our great community!

Additions

-New Ship: The Colonial Union Roland-Class starship is now available!
-Ships now have inherent qualities based on their type
-You can now zoom in while operating a turret by pressing left ctrl
-Optional Iron Man mode added that will delete your save file upon ship death
-Hosts can now name the game and their ship two separate things, this allows two games to have the same ship name without any unexpected issues
-New: Focused Laser Turret. High-damage variant of the Laser Turret. Uses substantial amount of power.

Changes

-Small tweaks to ship armor effectiveness
-Major balance changes to ships, turrets, chaos, etc
-Ships will now handle differently based on type / mass
-Tweaks to join, create and continue game menus
-Camera / shadow quality tweaks
-Upgraded save file format that will allow us to keep save data while allowing new content to be added to the galaxy. This will allow the galaxy to be regenerated with the new content while saving relevant data when it can be kept (mission data, ship components, crew level, etc). This should enable us to keep your save files working for much longer than before as we add new content to the game.
-Removed “Auto Turret” component from shops. This was a leftover component that wasn’t meant to be in the game. It can be somewhat glitchy.
-Pilot bots can now line up to the next waypoint when not in combat
-Engineer bots shouldn’t startup the ship shields while in green alert. This should help with repairing the hull -Improvements to piloting AI

Fixes

-Added additional filtering for save file names to prevent some saving issues
-Spacebar now should properly center the starmap
-Guns should no longer file while a dialogue window is open
-Fixed some problems with shop networking that would prevent clients from seeing a shop’s inventory
-Fixed networking issues with planetary creatures that caused them to behave incorrectly
-Fixed issue with “Hunt the Resolution” mission that prevented proper registration of the ship kill
-Fixed issue that caused waypoints to not show up for the pilot
-Sector discovered percent now shows percent of sectors visited in galaxy
-Fixed music playback to prevent overlapping music tracks
-Fixed issue that prevented players from being able to close the buy/trade dropdown when in the shop menu
-Fixed an issue with piloting controls / camera alignment
-Fixed an issue with galaxy path building when a game is reset

Thanks for your time!

Best,
The Leafy Games Team

State Of The Galaxy 2

Posted by Leafy Games (Creator)
11 likes
Hello everyone!  


Since we are finishing up the Alpha we figured it was about time to do another one of these write-ups! With this we hope to explain what we’ve been up to, as well as what our goals are moving forward into Beta! 

Moving into Beta doesn’t mean we are done adding, tweaking and polishing features, just that we will now be spending much more time working on scenarios and content! There were a few features we were hoping to get in during the Alpha, but we explain below why they were delayed. 

List of Some Non-Content Features (Early / Mid Beta) 

-Research / sample collection. The Scientist will be able to create useful consumables / unlock new talents. 
-Captain order system. A more in-depth order system with the potential for contextual orders based on the current sector and such. 
-More fleshed out chaos system with randomized galaxy events 
-More depth and refinement to each class
-Refined ship components and shop interface 
-Ship-to-Ship hailing 
-UI / Menu overhaul 
-VR 
-LAN 
-Leaderboards and high scores 
-And more! 

Plans for Early Beta 

-Content, content, content (more ships, planets, space scenarios, missions, factions, items, components, etc) 
-Work on features listed above 
-Improve UI 
-Improve AI 
-Work on balance / combat 

Plans for Mid Beta 

-Networking solution overhaul (adding LAN support in the process)
-More content, polish
-Finish up features listed above
-Continue to improve AI
-Continue to work on balance / combat 

Plans for Late Beta 

-End game 
-The Lost Colony and related content 
-Content, polish 
-Continue to improve AI 
-Continue to work on balance / combat 


Other Features:

Virtual Reality Support 

VR / Oculus Rift was part of our original plans for Alpha phase. We have been working on internal implementations but aren’t currently satisfied with the experience yet. This is partly due to the Unity implementation missing some advanced control options that are required to use our unique camera system. It is very close, but without these options it won’t be a workable experience. We will also need to do some major overhaul of our UI / menus which is something we were already planning. These will take some time but we are hopeful that it will come together in the first half of the Beta process. The VR community and movement has changed a lot since we first ran our Kickstarter and promised VR support, but we are still dedicated to supporting these awesome devices. We will also be investigating other VR headsets to see if they would be compatible with PULSAR. 

Offline LAN Support 

Our current networking solution is the Photon Cloud. It provides some huge advantages that are sometimes not obvious, including a hassle-free way to play with friends over the internet without messing with ports or routers. That being said, there are a few downsides of the Photon Cloud including a lack of LAN support. For this reason we will likely be moving to another networking solution during Beta. We are investigating a few possibilities, but these still need some time to mature and stabilize. We don’t want to lose the ease-of-use functionality for connecting players but need some more control to allow for an offline LAN mode. 

Mod Support 

There have been some hopeful developments related to Unity 5 that might allow for this in the future. However, it is not a small task to add mod support to a game like PULSAR, especially after years of development without the feature. We are not promising that mod support will be part of the release of PULSAR. There is a chance that we will add it post-release, but it would be a large and time-consuming undertaking. 

How much content is planned? 

The amount of content is somewhat flexible. We want many hours of play, unique scenarios and bits of content throughout. We have a hefty behind-the-scenes list of planned content that we will implement over the course of Beta. 

How much longer do you plan to work on PULSAR? 

Our current estimate is 12 - 18 months. This is mostly based on how long it will take us to create a satisfactory amount of content. 

Multi-Crew Support? 

We are completely focused on the single crew experience. We have no plans for any multi-crew modes and/or MMO features. We have our work cut out for us already with the announced feature set and amount of content, so we want to make sure we have the time and resources to make it sufficiently polished. 

 Dedicated Servers? 

Dedicated server functionality might be in the works. No definite promises at this time. A lot depends on our final networking solution. 

We’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our community. Your feedback and suggestions have been amazing, and many areas of the game have been improved due to them. The encouraging support you’ve given has been really motivating to our team; we’re quite humbled by the messages we’ve received from you all. For those of you who’ve been submitting bug reports and output logs, we honestly can’t thank you enough for taking the time out of your day to send us that information. It helps a lot, and the game would certainly be worse off without your contributions. 

Thanks again for your time and support. It’s a real pleasure to work with you all on this project. 

Best, 
The Leafy Games Team

Pre Beta 3 - Devlog 57 - ExoSuit and Hand Held Scanner!

Posted by Leafy Games (Creator)
9 likes

Hello everyone!

Pre Beta 3 should be out now! This update ended up being an interesting one, we got to add two things we’ve been excited about for a while: the ExoSuit and the Hand Held Scanner! We’ve also made some progress regarding connection issues and crashes. We added region support which should hopefully strengthen people's connections if they aren’t based in the US. This is something we can’t fully test alone, so we’d love any feedback!

Devlog 57:


For those who’ve been watching this project for a while, you may remember a super early scanner from one of the earlier devlogs. The new scanner has been redesigned as a larger, two-handed device to increase readability. It can currently detect your fellow crewmembers, enemies or hazards, items and components, NPCs, and interior/exterior locations. You can read more about the scanner under the “Scientist” section of the manual on our website!

The ExoSuit is pretty straightforward, you need to put on the suit to explore certain environments that would otherwise be fatal to your crew! We’d like to do more with it in the future (e.g more helmet information and feedback, more types of environmental hazards, potentially leaks). You can read more about the suit under the “Introduction” section of the manual on our website.

Additions

- Server regions have now been added, people can connect to servers in the US, Europe, Japan, Singapore and Australia. This should hopefully help people close to those regions get better ping. The menu should popup by default on first bootup. You can change your region in the Multiplayer Settings while in the main menu. You will only be able to see / join games in your selected region.
-Pawn Planet cameras have been overhauled. This should allow us to greatly increase the draw distance.-Added the ExoSuit: A protective enclosure surrounding the player that protects them from hazardous environments. The suit is designed to be the all-in-one solution for encountering almost every type of foreseeable hazardous environment.
-Added the Hand-Held Scanner: An equipable item that allows the player to gain a better understanding of their surroundings. It can identify a number of different things from enemy life forms to useful items!
-New Planet - Frozen Wasteland
-New Planet - Low Oxygen Environment
-New Planet - High Temperature Environment
-New Planet - Acidic Atmosphere
-Added two new missions
-Added a new creature type
-Lifeform targeted scan now has functionality
-All 4 sensor types now have detection / signature levels. Only one signal needs to be detected for objects / ships to be detected.
-Added planet scans. They are still pretty early, but they can be useful for determining how dangerous an environment is.
-Added new functionality to the teleporters, they can now teleport into planet interiors. 

Changes 

-Inventory item preview will now properly center items
-Changes to how some turrets are synced allowing clients to better predict auto aiming turrets
-Experimenting with some networking changes to hopefully make connections more stable and less likely to disconnect (added CRC integrity check)
-Algorithm updates to ship sensors / detection conditions
-Base damage of railgun turrets has been decreased
-Temporarily removed the QT active scan option, we’ll add it back once it gets proper functionality. 

Fixes 

-Fixed some issues related to game loading / timing that could cause serious problems when loading a saved game
-Fixed some small input issues in ship screens that should make button selection smoother
-Fixed an issue that prevented players from being able to pickup items until a warp jump was completed while they were in the game
-Fixed an issue with nuclear devices that could cause a hidden loaded device and/or the possibility of multiple detonations
-Fixed issue with loading saves that caused persistent data to be created for every sector instead of sectors with actual persistent data. This will require a new save file format so older saves will not be able to load in the new version.
-Fixed issue that could cause a game crash while the game is shutting down
-Fixed some issues that could cause minor issues in customization syncing
-Experimenting with forcing Unity to unload unused assets during each warp. This should help keep memory usage under control over time and prevent crashes related to high memory usage.
-Optimized some procedural materials to reduce runtime memory usage
-Fixed some issues with audio that could cause all sound to cut out randomly 

 Known Issues 

-Shops will sometimes incorrectly sync their inventory to clients if the player joined while in range of a shop
-Some issues have been seen with crew bot networking
-Some audio crackling has been observed
-Bandits will sometimes not spawn / fall through the level on certain planets 

Pre Beta 2.1 notes: http://forums.pulsarthegame.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1644

Pre Beta 2.2 notes: http://forums.pulsarthegame.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1648

Pre Beta 2.3 notes: http://forums.pulsarthegame.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1650

Thanks for your time! 

 Best,
The Leafy Games Team