Upon reading iFanzine’s enticing article about our coming title, Project Spectral, I noticed that a link pointing back at the blog directly (and somewhat logically) hit a one year old article: Appworks 2011.

So I thought it would be a good idea to quickly summarize what we’re up to at Anime 3D SFX.

Antistar 3D: Rising – New chapters in dev?

YES. 90% of game features developed for Project Spectral (see below) will support the long awaited Antistar update.

Please bear with me; Antistar will remain a chatty game; Antistar will remain an adventure game; Antistar will become a physics enabled action game with light RPG elements. The first episode was stir-fried over 8 months. Can’t entirely apologize for stewing up a sequel.

Project Spectral – Why? What? When?

I’d been toying with the idea of creating a dark piece - an interactive journey into a universe filled with nameless fears, with just a tiny light shining at the end of the tunnel.

For the best part of 2011, the Antistar project had been the driving force behind the development of our game platform - around last September I checked what we’d got and I thought, enough for an exciting new game, not enough for the Antistar update.

In the meantime my ideas about gaming and my approach to game design have matured so I thought it would be interesting to put that into practice, giving us a chance to explore and validate some of the goodies I’ve thrown into the game engine (see ‘our game platform is evolving’, below).

So I cooked up a few key features for an action game and started hunting for musicians, telling myself above everything else this game needs bewitching music and ambiances and I’m surely not the person that will create this.

More about Spectral later this month…

Our game platform is evolving

Listing a few exciting features is better than telling the naked truth*

  • NPC AIs – You know how so many game AIs can’t do much other than attacking the player? It’s in part because many games are designed to play this way, but I think we can offer interesting gameplay going way beyond that.
  • AAA Pathfinding – Navmesh oriented pathfinding, including pathfinding between disconnected / moving (!) platforms
  • Bullet Physics – We have integrated Bullet Physics, a popular, open source physics engine also used in Blender and MMD.
  • Level editor – Blender based.
  • Animation software integration – Blender but also MMD and others (via COLLADA).

*Naked truth: At the moment I care about how clean and productive our engine is a lot more than about what it actually does).

Outlook

A recurrent question is whether I’ll port our stuff to Android. The answer is: not very soon (dear Android user, an infuriating article awaits your wrath).

For now I’d say that never mind well “documented” misgivings, I believe Apple are aptly supporting small developers, whether coincidentally or not.

Regarding plans to port to JME, scrap that; while the ‘bright new kids’ ( Apple? Google? Dem new kids? ) didn’t invent anything and trashing decade old industry standards and technology may be a waste, sometimes moving in early appears to be the recipe for failure (remember Ngage?). Either way I vaguely heard that Nokia is migrating to Android so there’s nothing left to say.

This year I’m looking at the Mac App store and feel excited about the NGP; additionally, given intrinsic compatibility at the GPU level, the 3DS is somewhat attractive – assuming the old wizards actually open up to to smaller studios, that is.

And the iPhone 5, yea. I really want an iPhone 5 so don’t 4S-bulls**t me anymore.