Posted by Data in Cave Vehicle Engine, Crush2D, Planetoid Pioneers - June 15th, 2016

Knuckles Ride

So we’re a bit late with this one – it was supposed to be out a month ago, but we had several (good!) things distract us, like preparing for our two-month sprint with the core team together in a cabin in Slovakia, which is now ongoing:
ProjectSlovakia images on Twitter

Anyway, we did have some great feature news to share even back then, like:

  • New Labroid Planetoid Scene and Activity, with a monster boss battle in the core
  • Several new Blueprints like teleporter, flamethrower trap, new chests, etc.
  • Pioneers can now pick up and throw smaller, circular resource chunks (200kg) vs the huge and frankly unrealistic 1000kg ingots before (which required physics cheats to be lifted). The large ingots are still useful for storage and maybe for towing in a mining cart that is pushed or pulled by a robust Rover.
  • Entire Asteroid Belt maps can (theoretically) be completed now and are shown as such on the metamap. They are completed by successfully finishing all the Planetoids in them.
  • BP Fauna Knuckles: The first AI that is mountable, rideable, and controllable after having been printed (so it is friendly toward its creator). KNUCKLES SMASH!
  • Most printed AIs now ignore the Pioneer that printed it.
  • Abstracted out and added a generic biped move-behavior to the lua folder. Used both by Bot Flip and the new blueprint, Bot Sentry.

So go forth and enjoy the above in the latest build in the main (non-beta) branch on Steam!

Posted by Data in Crush2D, Planetoid Pioneers - June 13th, 2015

Quick update on our presence at DreamHack Summer 2015 RIGHT NOW:

Official page with info:
DreamHack Summer 2015

Come see us at the DreamExpo booth located in Hall B!

Posted by Data in Cortex Command - June 15th, 2014

Kruger Heavy IndustriesSorry for the delay, dear mac folks – the Build 30 update of CC finally dropped after yet another round of heroic efforts by our porting guru Chris Kruger (pictured at left)! It’s on Steam with full workshop integration, and also on our licensing site: The humble download will also be updated first thing on Monday!

Posted by Data in Cortex Command - June 17th, 2010

Mechanics outlineSo after six months of development, it’s about time we pull the covers off the next big project Data Realms is working on! Before I say anything else, let me assure you all that Cortex Command is still alive and well. It’s what I personally focus my development time on until it is considered “done”.

For a couple of years now, I have been dreaming about making something out of these incredibly inspiring sketches that Arne made for his Metafight redesign page. The new project wouldn’t be set in the Metafight world (for licensing reasons, etc), but many of the game mechanics outlined in that sketch just looked too fun to not make a game out of!

A vehicular exploration/combat game where you can jump in and out of your ride, then run it into the ground until you find another one to replace it.. now that’s what the Cave Vehicle Engine is going to support! When on foot, you will have a little jetpack with which you can skim down slopes and do cool jumping and grappling tricks to get away from danger.

While Cortex Command and its Retro Terrain Engine was all about the dynamically destructible pixel terrain, the Cave Vehicle Engine is going to be about the dynamically deformable/destructible movable objects (as opposed to the mostly static terrain). The graphics and physics are now all polygon-based and fully hardware accelerated.

The person who has been working full-time on getting the CVE and its custom physics system going, is the very talented Miroslav Adamus, a Slovakian hero who is a much better (and faster!) programmer than myself. Among other things, he has so far managed to implement a powerful particle system, soft-body dynamics with volume (area) preservation, procedural fracturing of objects, and run-time generation of physical objects based on transparency data in their source images/textures. We are applying the lessons learnt while making CC, so this new technology should reach new heights of power and modability!

Early sketchesCover mechanicsTerrain engine

Oh, by the way, in addition to much other rambling, the maestro musician DannyB and I talk about the project about 25 minutes into this podcast by the 1UP Oddcast crew: PODCAST DOWNLOAD

In the spirit of transparent indie development, here is a very early test build of the engine in action! Have fun smashing objects around and driving the test vehicle. 100% of the art in here is placeholder test stuff, so don’t judge how it looks, only what it can do. In fact, everything (including the physics) is in early test stages. There’s definitely weirdness in many situations, but we think it’s already quite fun to noodle around with! See the included readme for the controls, and ENJOY!

Crush and awe
Download CVE Test Build 24!

Posted by Data in Cortex Command - June 12th, 2007

Download Test Build 14!It’s Test Build time! We recommend you uninstall your previous test builds before installing this!

Quite a bit of new stuff in here, but much of it isn’t immediately apparent. Several big changes happened under the hood; examples include the way maps are loaded and the complete reorganization of the material palette.

Some of the many other changes and improvements:

  • Vastly improved collision detection and response, both against terrain and other objects. Still not perfect, but much better
  • Physics simulation and graphical framerate decoupled! This means no matter what your FPS is, the physics will behave EXACTLY the same. No more sinking into terrain because things are slowing down.
  • Completely new sets of small gibs and particles
  • AI mode control – hold down the switch actor button, and then press a direction to select a different mode for the Actor you’re switching away from
  • Your team’s actors are now ordered by their horizontal positions in the scene. Press right switch button and you’ll get the closest guy to your right, for example.
  • Much fewer intersection problems with the terrain. Things are not as likely to get embedded and weaken bunker walls.
  • ‘Tunneling’ through terrain much less likely to happen
  • Enemy AI ships won’t appear directly over your base any more, only on opposite half of scene.
  • Long wielded devices are prevented from sticking into terrain; can’t poke a long cannon through walls anymore
  • Scene terrains are now simple RLE Bitmaps instead of using weird contour files. Paint your terrain with the material palette and save as 8-bit bitmap with RLE compression, and presto you have a terrain
  • Only loads all data once on startup of game, so it’s much quicker to reset or restart the scene.
  • Lots more, going to fill out later by looking at source control logs

What this does NOT have:

  • Campaign mode.. saving it for the real game.
  • Scene Editor.. ditto.
  • Gibbable ships and new ships, working on these, some may appear in next test build
  • New guys and guns.. may save for real game too
  • Ability to force reload of all ini’s without restarting game, will be in next build.

Also, old mods are unlikely to work with this build! We appreciate the huge amount of effort put into all the modifications for previous test builds, but we just can’t afford to spend time dealing with legacy support of not-even-beta versions! The good news is that mods should be relatively easy to bring up to speed with TB14. Later we will try to post some helpful technical outlines of changes between 13 and 14.