It looks really promising, and it feels like one of those ideas that could become popular.
(I like how you placed Notch's Minecraft character in the doorframe of the image as part of the 'If you're names not on the list you're not coming in'-update :))
Roleplaying and creativity is pretty high on my list. For example I'm working on a Quest Design system where you can hook together anything in the world to create a quest.
A simple example:
You create a Wizard NPC with an input of (4) (Boars tusks) (which you link to the Boar's monster area). Once completed it unlocks the (Gate) next to him, allowing the player to access the tower full of loot. The inputs and outputs would be completely flexible and could lead to some pretty funny situations. Careful balancing would be needed so players aren't walking halfway across the map just for a shoddy Wooden sword reward.
Probably much more sustainable than say Indiegogo or Kickstarter.
It isn't every day you get on HN. Hurry up and release something. Provide the usual warnings (this is beta, this sucks right now, things break, etc), but release something. One of the reasons Minecraft was successful was the "release early, release often" philosophy they took. You'll get users, and user input, quickly, should you follow the same path.
You've been working on this since at least september of 2015. it's good enough right now. Even if you up and change huge chunks of code later, it's good enough right now. I feel like a douche saying this, but How many more times do you think you'll be on HN?
Sometimes things really aren't done enough yet.
Anyways, I'm thrilled you made it happen.
It's part amusement park and part resort casino. A lot of what they do is put up pretty visuals while they massage your brain with variable schedule of reward.
And it's not just the rides. There's all sorts of prizes, souvenirs, and events designed to make you come back over and over again. There's a casino aspect to it too. Take the ride and you might get a fabulous prize at the end. Or more likely not, but you can always try again tomorrow.
So you can see how the MMO -> Theme Park Tycoon would work. Instead of rides, you designate zones, quests, & dungeons. Instead of hiring costumed people to dance around, you create NPCs. Instead of drink & toy vendors, you sell buff food, pets and mounts and gear. Instead of hiring janitors and security guards, you'd hire game masters (GMs) who would do the same clean-up & refereeing work.
Done properly, this would be an incredible experience. There's the tycoon part of it which would let you see how well you built your Skinner box and how much the Sims are getting addicted. And then there's the part which resembles many of the various gamemaking kits out there. RPGMaker comes to mind. The player can build an entire fantasy world. With multiplayer and the ability to import creations, the world can be built by a team. And then the player could open up the world using the built-in server and actually play in their creation with their friends.
Rides <--> quest areas.
Class trainers <--> Bathrooms.
It's written in C#.
The engine handles all the voxels internally, but some of the models like the characters and Jellos are created in Blender and Magicavoxel.
Photoshop for textures.
Visual Studio Code for the IDE.
There's also the 2.5D "Text will be Text" plugin that actually alters how Dwarf Fortress renders tiles, stacking 2D planes so you can see more than 1 Z layer at a time .
I'm actually working on a multiplayer map builder in a ww2 fps: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XdLbRzsCDg (I hope this is ok to share I don't think they are in competing markets)
Curious to get your guys response to it!
Great work and good luck!
So yeah, seeing this feels like Dungeon Keeper meets Minecraft. Which could be very interesting if executed properly, but it's not going to be easy.
Started getting some attention in the roguelike world but it's really not a traditional roguelike... just an awesome Dungeon Keeper-esque game.
Ever play Knights and Merchants? that game was wonderful, albeit buggy when you got too big a city.
HNGHHGUHG - the sound of a serf dying due to the AI not able to properly manage routing of all the serfs when you had a big city with >100 serfs.
So many hours spent on that game in 1997-98
Superhot is another recent game that also meets the criteria; time advances only with player movement. Dead simple core concept. I suppose Minecraft probably stands as the most famous example though (which is ironic considering this game's art style and game mechanics appear to have been heavily influenced by it).
- Superhot actually took the stop time mechanic from Time4Cat , a free flash game. With guns added, and a unique art style, players were drawn in. It also helped that the game was originally created for the 7DFPS challenge where it received initial interest.
- Minecraft gained popularity originally because it added enemies that came out at night, something the world building genre hadn't really seen before (and so the reviewers jumped on it). Voxel engines weren't new, but it was unprecedented to use them to give creative ability to the user like so ('user customization' being a common theme in many successful games, see: TF2 hats!)
- Same again with Portal, the mechanic was neat, but the story is what people always talk about.
- Monument Valley strikes me as another, great idea with the isomorphics, but also great art style and animation regardless. The progression of puzzle difficulty is what keeps the player interested though, as the learning curve is subtle enough to work in the casual games mobile market.
- Here is an example  of a good idea on the scale of Portal, but so far poor execution, resulting in lackluster gameplay. It is Pillow Castle's First Person Puzzler where picked up object's are re-scaled depending on your perspective.
The jury is still out on tMoST, but it's still rather early in, and you can already see a lot of improvement and style between the early tech demo and the small trailers. Notably, I think there is a bit of a genre trap, where this kind of mind-warp game is stuck playing out in certain stories. I'm utterly a sucker for this sort of game, so I'm getting it no matter what. But it'd be nice if it knocks it out of the park.
My thoughts as well. The trap you mention is typically a linear environment with a solid-yet-comical (or whimsical) narrative, ala Portal. That allows the featured game mechanic to be introduced at an optimal pace, effectively realizing more milage out of it. It's also the safer and more conservative route.
As a little thought experiment, I wondered how the perspective mechanic in tMoST would work in a completely different genre, and I figured it'd be pretty entertaining in say—an agent-based MMO simulator. I mean, just imagine watching a bunch of simulation agents wander about the map, trying feverishly hard to properly size objects to their liking. That seems as if it would at least be amusing. Bonus points for proper physics so they can accidentally crush each other with giant, oversized objects.
I could see that being a fun one-off game.
But holy hell, as it went further on with the person resizing/fourth wall escaping I was interested.
Isn't that game meh? Not a great example.
> Minecraft gained popularity originally because it added enemies that came out at night
I've never heard that point of view before. Rather that it was a cubic world were everything could be destroyed and created.
> Portal, the mechanic was neat, but the story is what people always talk about
What? Besides "the cake is the lie" there is no real story, people talk about the game mechanism not the story.
Conclusion: I disagree with 3/4 of your post.
I suspect it depends on your taste in games.
> Rather that it was a cubic world were everything could be destroyed and created.
'Survival mode' is what was reviewed initially though , and gave the voxel world idea a way to flourish.
> Besides "the cake is the lie" there is no real story
The story drives the single player experience, ending with a fight with the main antagonist GLaDOS. This is then expanded on in the second game. The story contains well known characters such as GlaDOS, Atlas and P-Body. Particularly GLaDOS's deadpan humour is a big part of the story and is referenced frequently.
Also lets be honest, the whole cake thing in Portal was pretty funny. It was just the people burning the joke into the ground and snorting the ashes that ruined it.
The plot was loads of fun--it's the 1960s, and the Space Race is just a cover for the fact that the US and the Soviets have both been waging war on the Moon, with hovertanks, for years.
There were quite a few of these around when I was learning to program: I and a couple of friends competed in one where you provided a robot that had to kill survive longer than the rest. Each action (movement, shooting at an enemy, using your shield, scanning to see anything) took energy and sources of that were unevenly distributed around the simple landscape (so a robot could camp on a large source for a while as an example tactic). My robots didn't tend to do very well unfortunately.
There must be modern equivalents around, though it sounds like you want to go the other way: providing the challenge to the AIs rather than an AI itself, so perhaps you could create your own.
I've considered it - it is one of the many projects on my "when I win the lottery or otherwise have a lot of spare time all of a sudden" project list. There are two main options: run the AIs on your platform in which case one of the constraints is processing resource (which you somehow need to hand out fairly) or just provide an API through which the AIs can submit moves (in which case you can't govern how much processing resource each AI can throw at the problem, but the game service would be very resource efficient to run. Of course with the latter option if there are limits to what the AI can see (fog of war or similar) then you have to play the whole game out before letting spectators see it otherwise an AI could abuse the spectator interface to gain advantage, if the AIs are hosted on your resources you can constrain such visibility much more readily.
If you or someone else ships something like you just described, I'd probably waste a lot of weekends. So let me know if you win the lottery!
The major enabling feature is that I do not differentiate between players and AI - both are networked clients (see here for the API docs: https://github.com/srpeck/kchess/blob/gh-pages/docs/kchessdo...). I wrote up some of my other design decisions here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=10924316
And sorry, the live demo is currently down...but should be pretty quick/easy to run your own locally.
Reminds me of "Sandkings" by George R. R. Martin. It's in the Dreamsongs volume I collection. The connection is the protagonist buys some insect-like pets for which he is like a god and there are multiple colonies which do things on their own in a terrarium.
That is an interesting idea to make a game like that.
If the game is PvP (like most xbox games), the there is only the single game, and a 'host' is chosen to act like the server above. This can lead to problems though like host advantage , so the networking logic has to be carefully designed in order to mitigate this effect.
No Man's sky probably does a lot more server side, as the world is persistent for everyone.
I think this shows a lot more promise though
Edit: As pointed out below, don't buy Towns unless you know your buying an abandoned beta-stage game. Good idea for a game, but, IIRC, the dev got kickstarted, took the money, and left
Its abandoned and an unfinished mess.
I've been craving a new game in this genre for a while. I love the 'idle' game play where the world evolves. Point me to the crowdfunding page!
Have you considered approaching Sony's indie-developer program?
As far as I can tell, on this generation they are being incredibly supportive of indie developers ... and I would 100% pay for an indie game like this on PS4.
Never seen anything like this before.