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Messages - Enigma

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Suggestions / Re: Crafting Recipe Guide?
« on: August 08, 2017, 10:25:30 pm »
You'll be happy to hear that this feature is already in our todo list.

No, we don't believe it would make the gameplay too easy : there is more interesting challenges to offer to players than just switching between game and browser for manufacturing instructions.

About the offline play, that's a good argument.

Anyway, thanks for your return, this is always useful for us.

The Blackvoxel Team

Suggestions / Re: Player Physics
« on: July 27, 2017, 10:42:52 am »
Hi, ThomasMonroe and welcome to the Blackvoxel Forum  :)

We understand what you said about the left handed users. So, the team decided to make something. A customisable input system is already in the todo list, but taking in account the priorities, it may take some time. In the meantime, what we can do is adding the right shift key as a "quick fix" for an upcomming version.

For the points related to travelling time, we are not surprised that players accustomed to other voxel games can be slightly lost. Blackvoxel is a very different game with very different paradigms and gameplay. Much more different than most player could think at first sight.

What we mean is that a different game means some different gameplay choices. In Blackvoxel, the travel time is one of the problems we decided to put strongly in the player's way. So, it's part of the problems the player will have to think about in order to find solutions. This have a strong influence on player's gameplay.
When displacements have a strong cost, this incitate the player to avoid unnecessary travels. So, the player will develop some kind of organisation in order to avoid these. That's what we want.

Blackvoxel provide Vehicles, Automation and Massive voxel interaction as base paradigms. A slow travel time reinforce the need for vehicles, organisation and automation.
There is also other game orientation reasons in favour of that choice that would be long to explain. This kind of choice is also common in adventure games.

A "power" for walking faster was already discussed in the forum. After some thinking and consideration, it's unlikely we'll add it. For the same reason, we won't retain suggestions to include some "teleportation portal" or any similar paradigm that would eliminate the distance.

For the example you given about water, here are some example I would suggest in order to solve it in a "Blackvoxel gameplay way".

* Automation way : Use more pumps, so you'll have more water per time unit. You'll bring back much water per travel, so much less travels to do.
* Building way : In Blackvoxel, water can flow from a relatively long distance. Some players dig horizontal tunnels to get water near their base.
* Exploration way : There is some infinite water generators in the Canyons ( Why not bringing one at home ?

About "Stairways pain", you'll be happy to hear that this will be improved : some planed elements are missing and remains to do like a vertical transportation system.

For the actual game, there is some ways to avoid making a very long staircase. Some players use the airplane to travel vertically in order to reach deep locations. Robots can dig large vertical access pits and horizontal caverns where you can build runways. The Z0 airplane can be used, but when you reach high tier of the game, the Z1 airplane and it's short landing distance is very good for that.

In the hope we can have helped you, thank you for your interesting return, feeling and thoughts. :)

The Blackvoxel Team

Announcements / Blackvoxel 2.1 Mac Os Port is out
« on: June 18, 2017, 03:08:08 am »
The Blackvoxel Team is proud to announce Blackvoxel V2.1 : now compatible with MacOsX.

All thanks of the team goes to Joshua Olson, the contributor who made this port.

This first experimental version is released in source code form.

To run blackvoxel on MacOs, go to the Blackvoxel Github and follow the instructions.
  • Open a terminal
  • Execute `xcode-select --install` if you don't have Xcode's command line tools.
  • For the GLEW and SDL dependencies, make sure Homebrew is installed.
  • `brew install glew sdl`
  • Download the Blackvoxel source tarball (or zip file) here and extract it to somewhere in your home directory
  • Use something like `cd blackvoxel_source*` to open your terminal to the root of your Blackvoxel source folder.
  • `make`
  • `./blackvoxel`
Once this is done the first time, you will then only have to repeat steps 1, 6 and 8 to launch Blackvoxel.

Report any difficulties in the Troubleshooting and bug reports section in this forum.

The Blackvoxel Team

The first "bug" can be converted into an option: when enabled, it stops the sound after the first block, but not if the option is disabled.

The second "bug" may be resolved by changing the sound of the footstep (maybe less loud?).

Hi, Rajdakin and Welcome to the Blackvoxel forum. :)

Yes, we think these are good ideas for making it better. :)

The Blackvoxel Team

Ps: About your message on github, as the private messaging system is disabled because of some spammer issues, we sent you an email address on your email.

Suggestions / Re: Mid-game logic systems
« on: May 05, 2017, 01:44:14 pm »
Yes, we'll take the necessary time to make the things right.

Blackvoxel is a long term project, what's matter is to make the right choices.

Thanks for your encouragement and support.  :)

The Blackvoxel Team

Suggestions / Re: Mid-game logic systems
« on: April 29, 2017, 04:53:17 am »
Thanks for your interesting suggestions and toughts  :)

Yes, we are aware that there is currently a gap to fill between "dumb" automation and the programmable stuff. And that is limiting the kind of interactions that can be done. We have some reflexions and improvement plans for future updates in order to bring more production schemes. But the confirmation of the user (you) on this point is useful for us.

You'll be happy to hear that many point you raised are already in our plan : logic gates, sensors and electronic circuits... and many, many more. (It's would be difficult to expose the 7 years of thinking we had around this game). All these will come. Though, these may work differently of what you described : Blackvoxel have a particular game logic and spirit ;). We should publish a guide to explain this.

For interfaces to voxel inventory, there are already some. That's what enable automation interactions (ex: Pump->Atomic Compressor). But I guess you mean : these are stream oriented and a direct access kind is missing for some kind of future blocks or the programmable robot. We'll add one.  :)

About roadmap and priority, it's difficult to indicate when a particular feature will be implemented as the roadmap is dynamic and subjet to frequent re-evaluation and changes. This also depend on community returns.

For the actual gameplay, I would recommend not trying to control the production from the source (by "blocking" it's input) but rather to control the production from the end : When a machine produce something and you don't remove the produced block, the machine will stop and wait for producing another one. Yes, some resources are immobilized in the "pending" production. But that's not a real problem as resources in blackvoxel are plentiful enough.
About chaining production, I recommend to use the networks (Optical and Wireless). Several machines can be fed with one single input. You can make a factory that can build everything "on demand" with this.

The Blackvoxel Team

Troubleshooting & Bug Reports / Re: Two bugs in the manual
« on: April 22, 2017, 11:04:21 pm »
Hi dodomorandi and welcome to the Blackvoxel Forum  :)

That's fixed ;)

The mission 21 is now published(So, don't forget to accomplish it).

Thank you for submitting these bugs. This is very useful for us.

If you see other problems or issues, we'll be happy to fix these. :)

The Blackvoxel Team

Announcements / Re: Blackvoxel V2.0 is out
« on: April 22, 2017, 04:05:58 am »
Yay! :)
Was just thinking... they said they were going to do a new version 'soon'... I checked a month or so ago and nothing :)  But now....

Hi, d3x0r, Glad to see you.  :)

Yes, at the time we answered, we though to release it shortly.

But the objective was strongly raised in between  ;)

Thanks for this report and interesting reflections,

The drilling sound was really annoying when mining repeatedly for a long time. That's why we decided to stop it after collecting one block for saving our ears ;). Yes, it could be taken as a bug, so we agree it's not the perfect idea. We left it as is because it is comfortable. Maybe we'll find something better someday...

There is no "running" mode in Blackvoxel. The idea behind this choice is : faster = vehicles. If the player could run, the vehicles would be less usefull.

We tough about an optional running mode as a power. But this will depend on our futur choices about game balancing. Nothing decided yet.

Shift in Blackvoxel activate the "No Fall" mode and the "Caps Lock" key locks this mode on.

We choose this key because it is near the "WASD" keys and easier to maintain for a long time than the CTRL key.

In this mode, the player is supposed to walk cautiously, so the feet won't hit the ground hard enough to make a footstep sound.

Announcements / Blackvoxel V2.0 is out
« on: April 02, 2017, 10:45:04 pm »
Hello Blackvoxel players,

We are proud to announce the deeply reworked release of Blackvoxel V2.0.

The months of silent work for this release bring a complete rebalanced and reworked game, the addition of a lot of new stuff and tools, various improvements and redesign, a new airplane and, finally, the introduction of the game missions(complete list of changes and improvements bellow).
In addition to this, we made a Raspberry Pi 2/3 port. Despite it's little CPU and GPU, we managed to make a full game port running with a good framerate.

If you enjoy our work, you'll be happy to hear we are working on ways for you to support the game developpement. Stay tunned for this.

Enjoy the game and don't hesitate to signal any bug or problem in the forum.

The Blackvoxel Team

The Complete list of changes and improvements

Completely Rebalanced Gameplay

We replayed a very long time with the game. This experience along with the community returns lead to a complete game rebalancing.
  • Easer starting, more "beginner friendly".
  • A smoothest evolution.
  • Added more affordable elements.
  • More guidance for playing : introduced the missions.
  • Added "the missing stuff" : the things that were missing to all of us.
Main changes and additions
  • Finally introduced the missions (use the RTFM cube).
  • A new airplane : the training Plane Z0. Very affordable but need runway.
  • Runway for airplanes.
  • A lot of machines are now much more affordable.
  • Rebalanced distribution of ores.
  • A new distant location with much more ores.
  • New set of "low cost" range of automations for early game phase.
  • Added 3 new mining robots and rebalanced the 3 existing one for more power.
  • Finished the Tool System and the Powers System along with several new tools.
  • Location system device for world navigation.
  • Complete universe documentation and map (in the manual).
  • New Analyser tool : can display a lot of informations on many voxels and machines. Can show what elements are now in a machine and composition of molten metals (great help for metalurgy).
  • Deeply redesigned overall look of the game.
  • Ground Analyser, let you know what's in ground here.
  • Rotation tool for conveyor belts (yes, finally).
  • Added a new kind of mid game voxel transmitter network.
  • Inventory is now preserved on death (less punitive game).
  • Worlds management improved : added the ability to use more than 16 worlds( 'N' and 'P' keys) and a(rustic) way to name a world.
  • Lots of details, bug fixes and little changes to make the game more polished, playable and user friendly (see bellow).
  • Support of new Linux distributions.
  • Published a lot of code examples for Squirrel and assembly robots in a the educational material section in the manual.
Raspberry Pi 2/3 Compatibility

Please read carefully the mandatory installation instructions in order to run on the Raspberry Pi.
  • Use the new experimental VC4 OpenGL driver.
  • Adapted texturing system to comply with the capacity of the PI's GPU(Selective resolution system).
  • Provide an hardware detection system for automatic optimal default settings for each type of Raspberry Pi.
  • Made some optimisation on RAM use.
  • Improved game physic engine schedulling in order to improve reactivity in low framerate situations.
  • Specific game tweaking : ex. Airplanes are allowed to run slower on Raspberry Pi version in order to play despite lower rendering distance.
  • Reworked World generator Scheduling for better CPU use.
  • Added a "Loading" screen during texture loading to GPU because Raspberry Pi is much slower than a regular PC.
  • Raspberry Pi specific compilation option.
  • Raspbian .deb binary Package.
Other changes, improvements, bug fixes...
  • Plane Z1 still can land anywhere, but can now break much shorter when landing on the new runway.
  • Sound volume handling finished, sound settings are now fully functionnal.
  • Fixed airplane not crashing on ground on some collision cases.
  • Lowered delay after respawn.
  • Big mountains now have ice on it.
  • Resolution dependant sized fonts support.
  • Added "Flip Mouse Y Option" (activate it in the settings_harware.dat file).
  • Disabled F4 and F8 keys (Analyser and Location System make it much better).
  • Inventory display of big block count are now much better.
  • Sequencer programming doesn't require anymore to use some true material quantities.
  • Fixed some graphic glitches : voxels doesn't appear to vanish on the entry of some machines anymore.
  • New respawn message.
  • Removed obsolete "Demo Version" compilation options.
  • Belt conveyors are now grouped to a common type when collected.
  • Base Machine now have manufacturing instructions.
  • Added a security to preserve Atomic Compressor content  : now you can't collect them if they aren't empty.
  • Improved mouse button emulation with keyboard : now, it work in all situations.
  • Fixed inventoy bug : when "dividing quanties", some rare cases was creating a "zero quantity" slot that appeared as a dummy unplaceable voxel.
  • Improved optical networks : now, an Optical Voxel Receiver can be placed directly after an Optical Deflector/Splitter for more compact design.
  • A materializer can now be placed directly after a network receiver (optical and wireless).
  • Fixed assembly robot movex.w : instruction is now assembled/disassembled correctly.
  • Fixed assembly robot rotation and multiplication buggy opcodes.
  • Fixed assembly robot y and z servo axis not working.
  • Fixed tree texture side is now in the right direction.
  • Squirell programmable robot now have a function to overclock it up to 16x faster.
  • New command to stop Squirrel programmable robot at the end of a program and prevent auto-rerun at game reload.
  • Screen Resolution under 1024x600 are not proposed anymore in the screen setting interface as it would be too small for correct interface display.
  • A lot of little fixes and change I forgoted to note...

Raspberry Pi is a trademark of the Raspberry Pi Foundation.

General Discussion / Re: Voxelarium.js
« on: October 31, 2016, 04:34:46 pm »
I did some experimenting with building presorted voxels.... which seem to apply pretty fast.

This was part of the C# work; but basically I made a linear list of the closest points of sectors that are to the [upper/0/lower][left/0/right][forward/0/backward]

I just went through each point(voxel) and figured it's distance from the respective point, and then sorted the resulting indexes; so I could have an ordered list of voxel indexes for transparent things that are outside of 'here' which is the 0/0/0 center point...

And really to be more accurate any sector that is on a 0 needs to be sorted based on the slice of other coordinates... blah I'm over-complicating this.

For 'here' the sort list has to be dynamically computed; there's too many combinations to keep them all pre-set; well maybe sub-sectors could be made that could be pieced back together as 'close enough' ...

so anyway then it's just foreach( index in list ) { mesh voxel[index] based on drawinfo }   instead of just voxel based on offset... this will then add the faces to the draw list in the right order... (and maybe that's kinda what your sorter does; I just kinda wanted to implement it, because when I tried it with a bunch of semi transparent blocks it broke down because of how it serially stepped - without regard to which side the player was from the sector being meshed.

Why don't I get notifications? I end up having to just come back and read? I'm pretty sure I put in my email right?

The purpose of actual "rendering sorter" in Blackvoxel is mainly to avoid too many texture changes. Some GPU shows important performance improvements with this.

Sorting "by distance" is only made on sector rendering level... but not for each voxel in the sector.

Sorting by distance for each face in the sector would be dependant of the player's point of view. But this would implies that the work could have to be redone (at least on some sectors) each time the player's point of view will change.

In Blackvoxel, "semi transparent" rendering like "tinted glass" is made on an extra separate rendering pass. As faces aren't sorted in a sector, this could end up to rendering transparent textures in the wrong order.
It's could be surprising... but that's not a problem. As long as the textures are sufficiently transparent... it's blending correctly in any order. Of course, there is a drawback : this won't work correctly with texures with too much (or very different levels of) opacity. Sorting faces would make it better for this case. It's a matter of choice between pro and cons.

I've checked for notifications, it's active on the forum and it's working ok : we get it ourself. Yes, you have filled an email address. Check your email in your profile and also the "spam folder" at your mailbox.

The Blackvoxel Team

Troubleshooting & Bug Reports / Re: Invert mouse
« on: October 22, 2016, 01:25:54 am »
I suppose you could call it a personal preference, however I put this in bug reports because of its' negative impact on gameplay. For someone used to using an inverted mouse, it makes gameplay very awkward. If you could imagine a left handed person for a hypothetical comparison, being forced to write with their right hand. This is not a hardware issue.

Current Blackvoxel airplane control conforms to every flight sim I know, I can't imagine a scenario where this would need reversing.

Thank you for your quick responses

We can understand this kind of personal preference and the fact it can be very important for some users.

So you'll be happy to hear we have decided to add a "Reverse y" setting to the next release.

In the meantime, you can modify it in the Blackvoxel source code and follow the "Compile Blackvoxel from source " tutorial.

In the file "ZActor_Player.cpp" at line 219, replace :

ViewDirection.pitch-=Delta_y/(3*MouseRatio); the following code :


We wish you a Good Game...  :)

The Blackvoxel Team

Suggestions / Re: Linux user data dir
« on: October 21, 2016, 02:37:50 am »
Just an FYI, convention dictates Linux game data directories in the HOME folder should be prefixed with a "." to keep it hidden. This is to prevent viewing of the home folder being cluttered with generated folders.

Picture attached to demonstrate.

In the first version of Blackvoxel the data directory was hidden (we used ".blackvoxel") for the Linux version.

But that was changed when the school mode was introduced : we made the explicit choice to make this directory visible.

The problem with an hidden data directory was because Blackvoxel is also an educational program. Some users have to interact with some Blackvoxel files as part of their daily use(Programs for robots, files for programming or custom textures). Some student that are beginners can be confused as they didn't find the Blackvoxel data directory because it was hidden. And even for those knowing where to find it, it wasn't very comfortable as there is a lot of hidden directories in the home directory.
So it appears to us that a working directory shouldn't be hidden.
In addition, the new convention for a lot of Linux distribution is now to put config files in a directory lying in .config rather than sitting in the home as an hidden directory.

Some suggested that we should separate settings from the user data. But we find this confusing to have two place with Blackvoxel data in it. In addition, as all Blackvoxel settings aren't yet in the Gui, user have to use config files in some case. And it's not easy to explain to some users "find the Blackvoxel directory, not the one you see, but the other one that is hidden".

That said, we offer the possibility for the user (or some distribution packager) to adjust it to meet their goals. The data directory name is in the ACompileSettings.h configuration file for Blackvoxel compilation options.

The Blackvoxel Team

Troubleshooting & Bug Reports / Re: Invert mouse
« on: October 21, 2016, 01:43:32 am »
Can you explain what you mean?

Inverting the mouse look on the Y axis. Moving the mouse forward moves the view direction down, moving the mouse back moves the view direction up. This is inverse to the current configuration where moving the mouse forward moves the view direction up.
Honestly, this is a very common option among games with a first person or third person perspective.

Do you see the use of such "reversed" option as the cause of a personal gaming preference or because of using some specific input hardware (Mouse vs trackpad or maybe some "art pad" tablets") ?

What about airplane control ? The actual in Blackvoxel for airplane is "reversed" as in most flight simulator. Do you think a "reverse control" option should also reverse the airplane control ?

The Blackvoxel Team

General Discussion / Re: Voxelarium.js
« on: October 12, 2016, 09:32:00 pm »
I have some updates and news :)

I've been working on WebVR; and 3d controller support.  I have a single sector loaded that I can walk around, and that's kinda satisfying.

I don't really have pictures... and it's somewhat unstable.   I can't use my glow shaader in AltSpace VR (Free Social platform which supports all devices including 2d displays; err your desktop. )

I have it loading there which is almost like WebVR... but entirely not.

still actually working out controls; and I noticed in AltSpace that the controls are still hooked to their game engine, and I need to see if there's a can't default behavior;

and I had to fallback to conventional textures; but 90fps in javascript with lots of room to spare :)

Hi d3x0r, glad to hear some news.

We have also worked on the idea of making a VR version at the Rift availability some time ago. Unfortunately, the VR universe was rather immature about different hardware support and standard API interfaces. But things will come in it's time.

About fps, what we can say as we have done a lot of tests with different machines, with voxel there could be huge difference between graphic cards,  operating systems and drivers. Some systems can get well over 1000fps on the blue flat area(with nVidia hardware). Some aren't really fast despite some powerfull hardware. Some hardware will struggle with unsorted textures. Some have limited capacity with shaders. Some drivers/platforms don't support some OpenGL features.

Ps : A new Blackvoxel version will get out soon...  ;)

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