Using Noise and Median-Cut to Create Pixel-Nebula

One of the things I wanted to have in The Last Boundary was nebula. They look awesome and space doesn’t look like space without them, instead it just looks like a few scattered white pixels. But because the game is supposed to be pixel-artish I had to find a way to make my noise library make pixelly images.

Here are some examples:

The single-colour examples above use 8 different colours, while the others are using 16 colours. In this article I’ll show you how I created pixelly looking nebula for The Last Boundary.

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Progress Update 13th August 2019

New Artwork

I’ve been hard at work learning how to do pixel-art. I present you with my new “ship crashing into a sun” artwork:

New Ship

This is replacing the old artwork here.

Old Ship

I think it’s a big difference. I know that the pixel-art probably isn’t very good, but I’m proud of it. I’m a little concerned about the amount of time it took, because that means it’s going to be a long time to get enough content together to actually release a game.

From now on, I don’t think I’ll share any new artwork, so as to leave some stuff as a surprise.

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Progress Update 8-June-19

These last couple days I’ve started work on the star map. The idea is that a random number of stars, their planets, and the planets moons are generated. The numbers of star systems is somewhere between 15 and 20, maybe more or less, I’ll tweak it later. These are then arranged into “steps” according to how many minimum jumps I want the player to take to get from the current system to the destination system.

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Progress Update – 22nd October 2018

Lately I’ve been working on the events for the demo-build. Not much to say about it really. I’ve written I think maybe 2/3 of the events themselves, but will still need to create a bit of artwork to go with it. In addition there’s some additional audio to create, and I think I need to revisit some past audio as well.

Finally, I think there’s some new graphical effects that I can easily do for the demo-build that will go really well in one of the events.

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Sound + Progress

I’ve made a lot of progress these past few days. I’ve added sound effects and music. I’ve also created a more interesting event for testing purposes, with it’s own sound effects:

Next I need to:

  • Add a main menu
  • Add a menu to see the crew details
  • Add saving and loading of games
  • Create more events
  • Get some interesting graphics on the screen

Blinking lights!

These last couple of days I’ve spent positioning and timing the blurts a little better, there’s still some work that needs to be done though. I’ve completed all of the dynamic text except for the officer names, which I’ll do once they have names, for now they don’t even exist.

I’ve added the blinking lights that change based on the alert state of the ship as well. These makes things look a lot more interesting and dynamic.

There’s still a lot to do. Next up:

  1. Add some graphics to the main viewer
  2. Position the blurts when there are multiple at once
  3. Add the officers names to the blurts
  4. Add a button that will show a “chat history” with all the previous blurts and probably previous in-game text
  5. Add some music
  6. Add some sounds effects, like a klaxon for the red alert state and a sonar ping for the green state

Nearly playable

I’ve got an extremely short episode written that contains what I think is most of the elements to the game. Right now I’ve got a sort of playable thing happening except for variable text. There are variable options and blurts said by your bridge crew as well as random ones, but the text displayed to the player isn’t variable yet.

A gif to demonstrate.