On the weekend of 25-26 March 2006, an initial test galaxy was generated
A new design for an ion engine promises up to 10 times the fuel-efficiency of existing electric propulsion engines, according to tests by the European Space Agency.
AN EXTRAORDINARY "hyperspace" engine that could make interstellar space travel a reality by flying into other dimensions is being investigated by the United States government.
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Starseeker the History
Way back around 1985, a group of individuals got together with far too much excess time on their hands over quite a bit of rum and Southern Comfort, and ended up discussing the plausibility of a game about interstellar exploration. At this time the seeds were sown for Starseeker.
Data structures were devised and initial coding got underway. It soon became obvious however that the storage available at the time was too limited to store the type of data that was needed. So the project was shelved and shortly afterwards, forgotten.
(And yes that is Skylab which is about our generation).
Many years later (i.e.during mid 2005), I was sifting through some old books and notes and came across the initial design work. This pricked my interest once again to start doing something about the project.
Calls went out to old aquaintences during the middle of 2005 that the project was once again underway. Unfortunately, some of us had gotten a little older and health issues, partners, families and work commitments had become issues that have tended to slow things down quite a bit. Additionally, some of the contacts were also now half a world away. None the less, ideas slowly began taking form and coding happened slowly in the background to the stage we are up to now.
In the time since the initial developement began, programming languages had come quite some distance, and the original code which was written in C needed to be converted to C++ and classes were introduced to replace many of the old data structures. The beauty of this is that the data can be made self supporting and the requirement of additional supporting code is minimised.
Add to this that a background in Physics means that things do have to be at least scientifically plausable. So code and formulae are written, tested, discounted and written again, all in a apparently never-ending cycle. Things are however coming together, and with the assistance of members of the 8thlevel.com and Gamers' Cavern gaming communities, things are steaming on quite well.
Where is it up to now?
The code for generation for stars has (hopefully) been completed and on the weekend of 25-26 March 2006, an initial test galaxy was generated. This galaxy is a 50 light year cube and contains 125,000 sectors each a one light year cube in which to adventure. Of these there are 75228 containing stars,
and there are 66854 which have planetary systems.
Coding is underway for the generation of planetary systems and this should be complete in about the next week or so. After that, the message parsing system needs be cleaned up and some further testing done.
While there has been some discussion on 8thlevel.com about alternative races, the initial playtesting will be done with all human/humanoid opponents.
At this stage there is a great deal more work to be done on the technological advancement tree. When this it at a decent stage playtesting can begin.
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