Sunday, December 27, 2015

One Year Ago

Well, close to.



Hard to imagine that it was just a year ago that I "released" Femtocraft 1.

Well, I'd like to say that we've come a long way since then, but we all know it's not exactly true.  However, it's also not a lie.



Yeah, I don't have a release for you this year.



But.  What I have been working on feels and looks like it will be a much better core experience than Femtocraft 1 could ever be.  I have to say, scrapping Femtocraft 1 after putting so much time into it was one of the harder decisions I could ever do.  After one year, I can say that I have very few regrets about doing so.  My one regret is that, in doing so, I wouldn't have anything out for you players to enjoy.  I am glad, however, that there isn't something out there that I didn't feel proud of putting out there.  Not to say I wasn't proud of Femtocraft 1, but I know that it wouldn't have lasted a year in the state it was in.  I know, that when Femtocraft 2 is finished, not only will I be proud of putting it forth, but I know also that it will last, because unlike Femtocraft 1, it doesn't rely on layers of gimmicks.



As far as releasing Femtocraft 2.  I have a basic feature set I'm looking to complete.  It will by no means be the entire mod, but it will have gear to make and machines to build.

I have no time frame for this.  Just know that I cannot wait to put my thoughts into the world and to let you all share in what I am imagining this can be.  The first release won't be this.  Nor will the second, or third.  It will be a continuous process and I cannot wait to partake with you all.

Hope you all had a great holiday break and wishing you all a happy new year!



Itszuvalex

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Video Overview

Hey everyone!

Just finished off another stream.  Had a BSOD after the first 30 minutes, so I got delayed a little bit.



Here's the full video:


But also, I want to draw your attention to a specific portion that I set aside as Highlight:


This is a 30 minute walk through of everything in the mod so far, plus some of the design decisions I made to get there.


I'm still planning on keeping up a regular streaming schedule.  I appear to actually get things done when I stream, so that's a good reason to keep doing them!


Thanks everyone who came to watch, and I hope more people show up as well!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Streaming

As those of you who follow my twitch stream know, I have been streaming me coding again, recently.




This is mostly just as an extra prod for me to get my ass in gear, but you're all definitely welcome to come in and say hi.  It keeps me interested and motivated, and it lets you all know I'm not dead.

http://www.twitch.tv/itszuvalex



The stream link, just fyi.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Hello everyone!

I'm Alex, alex_6611, BlockWorker or however you want to call me, and the new secondary developer of Femtocraft!

I found this mod by playing on the OTE Genesis server. I was instantly interested in it and powered through Alpha 1's Micro and Nano phases, even with those insanely hard crafting recipes. Once I found out that the main developer was part of the OTE community and open to any help he could get, I got very excited, especially because I planned on getting into modding myself.

So here I am. I started off as a design helper, just throwing ideas in and participating in dev talk. Later I tried my hand at 3D Modeling, and my models turned out to be somewhat good, at least Itszu and me liked them a lot. So I was modeling everything for some time.
While doing that, I tried to write some of my own code, but I was new to Scala AND Minecraft Forge, so I wasn't really able to put anything good together for quite some time.
Some more time passed and I was confident enough at Scala to get into coding, so I started making things.
After all that I ended up as a secondary developer (and the only person besides Itszu who fully understands the current design/dev plans).

Here's a summary of what I've done for Femtocraft as of yet:


First of all, the machine frame with its corresponding render code, although that was very inefficient (as it was one of my first attempts at writing Femtocraft code) and was mostly rewritten by Itszu:


Then, the arc furnace model, its render code and the frame machine build logic:


Also the small nanite hive model:


Last thing that I made is part of a major feature and design change that wasn't explained on this blog before. I won't explain it in this post, but stay tuned! I'm still working on it to have more to show you and to be able to explain it better, but just know that it's a very big thing with about as much code as the entire frame system:





General news

Itszu is currently away on family vacation, so I'll be the only one working on this for another week or so. We have some awesome design progress and plans, which we will explain once there's more stuff to show.
If you have any questions, feel free to join me on IRC, channel #Femtocraft on esper.net.
My nick is alex_6611 and I'm usually around on evenings and afternoons at GMT+1.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Further Updates

I got a job!


Sorry for the radio silence.  This summer has been a rollercoaster ride of stress and time commitments.


But it was all worth it in the end!  I got a job!


But that's probably not what you're here to see :)

Progress


Has continued.  Basic Worldgen occurs, which is a simple replacement-sphere.

Multiblocks


As I've always been a fan of Multiblocks, as you are no doubt aware, I felt that the current approach to them is much too finnicky.  Especially for larger multiblocks, placing 125 blocks for a 5x5x5 takes a long amount of time.

And so I built a preview-able system. 



The idea being you can view the placement and place all the requisite blocks all at once, similar to how the vanilla Bed works.

Beyond that, decided to focus a bit more on the gameplay behind everything.  The majority of mods 'build' things instantly, with the time invested being in making items/blocks in crafting or machines. 

So, I decided to try something you might see more at-home in a RTS game.  Rather than having to make all the blocks for a multiblock, instead you make an item called a Frame.  



With Frames in hand, you can select which multiblock to place.



'Placing' a multiblock places frames where the multiblock eventually will go.  The frame then acts as a construction site, and you have specific item requirements you need to insert into the frame before it actually builds the multiblock.




Color


Color propagation works!


Looking forward to seeing how you color-code your rooms/hive clusters!


Usage


The multiblock selector for the frame is the result of a Gui system I built.  As a result, I can easily make more powerful interfaces.  The name of the game at this point in time is to revisit some of the design, and figure out what is needed to move forward.  Obviously, still need to work on a few of the core machines and item progression.  The question at this time is how in-depth do we go?

My thoughts on machines were either in-world crafting, which is very player-intensive and ultimately very difficult to automate, or something more RTS-like, similar to the multiblock selector.  The player simply clicks on one thing from the list of objects craftable by the machine, and it will either wait for the resources required, or actively request items from the hive cluster.  The concern from this is that it takes away from the fun of clicking items into slots in a particular order.  Aka.  I need more things to actually do with the mod to justify taking away the filler.  Alternatively, I would have to conceive of unique crafting mechanisms for any new crafting machine I want that is more complicated than a simple "put x in get Y out" refining machine.


Closing


Anywho, that's the progress update!  Sorry for the long delay.  I hope to get more done soon, but that's unlikely as I now have to apartment search and do all the standard pre/post-move busy work.  

All the core mechanics are in and working!  Need some design time, plus time to implement said designs, but that should be simple once they're set in-stone.  Otherwise, textures and models are the other backlog.


Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Femtocraft Alpha 2 - Coding has Begun!

Good news everyone!


Design for Core Femtocraft Alpha 2 Mechanics has progressed far enough that I feel comfortable beginning to implement some of it.

The result :


The Power System is 95% operational.

(Encoding is a bit messed up, here's the actual link)


And it supports colors for dynamic recoloring of your Femtocraft machines.



This actually went in really fast.

Thanks for sticking with it guys.  Here's for hoping that what comes out is worthy of the wait!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Checking In.


News:  3 credits from Master's degree.  Will finish by end of June.


Hey guys, if you're still around, thanks for sticking with it.


So...about the last post.  As some of you may have known, Femtocraft was graciously included in the Genesis modpack, released by Xaethon several months ago, despite being in an alpha state.  I am extremely thankful for him, as well as the players of OTE who tested Femtocraft.  Many bugs were found, such as faulty research saving, and item-save-state interactions.  Most importantly, however, I got feedback on the gameplay of the mod itself.

So...on to that.  Femtocraft was both a great success and a monumental failure.  The success portion is that, everything I designed was exactly how the mod played.  Players were guided through the tech tree, crafting got progressively more difficult the further they got.  Resources were used in abundance, tons of schematics floated around, and all in all Femtocraft was a hard mod.  Much, much too hard.  Also, both surprisingly and unsurprisingly, the "core" of the mod, the EE2 functionality, was pretty much ignored.  As I had guessed, it was far too difficult to do anything with, except for very extreme use cases.  Also, the UI design to show these recipes was sub-par, there was a lot of work on the machines I could do to make it easier, but...all in all those will turn out to be a moot point.

I realize, I don't want to do an EE2 replication.  There's already MineChem, Project E, and the recently re-announced EE3.  If I do something like that, it will quickly take over any and all design I do in the mod.  I immediately have to think about "undoing" recipes, about potential resource loops, etc.  It just takes the focus from making cool things to "how do I not screw up this system."  As such, I am doing what I should have done awhile ago, and scrapping Femtocraft Alpha 1.

It was a great learning experience.  I learned more than I ever expected to learn, and I had a blast doing it.  It's time to scrap my prototypes, recycle the good, and move on.




Femtocraft Alpha 2



Some people on Reddit had taken to calling Femtocraft "the Thaumcraft of Tech Mods."  You know, without really realizing it, I now recognize that that is in fact what I had wanted to try and do from the beginning.  Thaumcraft has been a huge inspiration for me, and is one of my favorite mods to play.  I love both Sci Fi and Fantasy, but one of the things I haven't seen in Minecraft is a "Magic-y" Sci Fi mod.  All the tech mods are about ore multiplication, quarries, scriptable computers, or reactors.  What about some fun things you can do?

So, to that end, I reintroduce Femtocraft.  It is a Magic mod, themed as tech.  Some of the key points I want to hit are as follows.
  • "Loose-ness" :  Botania, Thaumcraft, Ars Magica.  Though these may have particular block layouts for certain structures, something that follows from all is that you have artistic freedom in the larger shape of your base.  You aren't constrained by wire placement or having machines touching each other to propagate items.  To this end, Femtocraft will have a (mostly) wireless power system.  Additionally, there will be wireless item/liquid transfer, hopefully in a manner such that it can interface with other mods with ease.  
  • "Replay"  :   One of the selling points for Magic mods is that you can play through the mods differently in different playthroughs.  Though not everyone does so, the option exists.  I want to have Femtocraft be replayable, through and through.  No two playthroughs should feel the same.  See: Nanite variations.
  • "Tweakability" : This hits more towards Tech mods.  Once you have your setup, it's time to start tweaking numbers.  Maybe I can speed this machine up, at the cost of more power, etc., etc.  The main mechanic of Femtocraft is tweakable machines.  See: Nanite variations.
  • "Non-tiered Progression" : This is more a nod to Thaumcraft.  Though there are Tiers in Thaumcraft (see: Wand), that's more a tiering of tools, rather than machines.  The things you make in early-game Thaumcraft are still used in late-game.  The Tech equivalent would be upgrade cards, to keep older machines viable compared to later ones.  Femtocraft will use Nanite progression to keep machines created early on in the mod viable for use, as they will upgrade as your nanites do.  The only thing with tiers should be the tools you use to do so, not the machines you make.  

Last but not least, I want to say something about "Fun."  With Femtocraft Alpha 1, I was adamant about "doing things never done before."  That's great and all, but I kinda designed myself into a corner with that one.  It is tough to think of things in Minecraft that haven't mechanically ever been done, and to try and implement them in a reasonable amount of time.  I realize now that a lot of fun in Minecraft comes from alternative ways of doing something.  People don't progress through every mod simultaneously, and when they need to do something, they'll probably go to the mod with the most progression to get it done.  This is only possible if that mod actually offers that Mechanic.  Femtocraft Alpha 1 kept screaming "i offer different and unique mechanics, use me for those", when it really should have done "I do these things you already can do, differently."  I would rather offer unique and fun alternatives, instead of forcing myself to try and come up with completely unique, niche uses that will probably never see the light of day.  That isn't to say, I won't try and do those, I'm just saying I'm not going to blacklist mechanics that already exist.

So that's that.


TL;DR


Femtocraft Alpha 1:  Done, and scrapped.  The code is still publicly available on my Github.  I'm still going to recycle the useful bits out of it, but the majority of mechanics in that are staying in there, where they belong.


Femtocraft Alpha 2:  In design.  I'm not falling into the trap I did before, where I designed as I coded.  This time, I am spending as much time as is needed to ensure interesting mechanics and interactions exist, before I start to code.  This also means that, once I get the designs finalized, I know exactly what I have to code, and when I am done.  No more random expansions, extra systems, none of that.  No more scope creep.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

For Real This Time



I will be unable to work on Femtocraft until May.

I will only look at Femtocraft code to walk someone else through it, on the condition they want to work on it.  This doesn't seem likely to happen, but hey, always good to stay optimistic.

See you in a few months!




As you may have noticed, this isn't entirely true.

I'm working on critical bug fixes to support the Genesis modpack.  No new content, just allowing people to actually progress and use the mod.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

I Lied!

Muhaha.


I gave myself two days this spring break to get some ideas out of my head and into code.

Design Talk


    So, as I said in the past, I am dissatisfied with the current state of the 'industry' machines in Femtocraft.  What I mean by that is, all of the machines that are not power machines are getting the boot.  There is no variety in how they're used, and they're used for everything.  My intent is to distribute some of the items to different machines, and incorporate more multiblocks.

    Additionally, I am a fan of non-standard mechanics.  As such, I had a thought.  What if, at every tier, I introduce a new mechanic for all machines of that tier, and possibly later tiers?  Beyond simply power and sticking items in, you would have something else to fiddle with.  And that's what I'm going to do.  Don't worry, it starts off really simple, and you can complete everything in Femtocraft without worrying too much about the fine tuning of these mechanics.  But, you can definitely supercharge your machines/optimize your setup for the tinkerers amongst you.

So, what are these mechanics?  Well, let me start with the first one I made.


Nano

So, This was the first one I thought of, and I feel it fits the technology level of Nano pretty darn well.


What is it?



Lasers!

I know, I know.  Not really an inspired idea, but I have a feeling you'll come around.  So, how do they work?


    Lasers have a strength and a modularity.  By default, the basic laser block consumes nano-tier power and generates a weak unmodulated laser, that goes for a short distance.  You can toggle the direction the laser outputs from the block.  Additionally, you can toggle the direction that the block looks for reflector chambers.  These chambers increase the power usage per tick, but also increase the strength and distance of the projected laser.  And yes, Lasers will set you on fire.

    So, what about modularity you ask?  Well, that's where this block comes in.  



The Modulation Lens Mount block can accept any modulation lens.  All lasers that pass through this block gain the modulation of these lens.  However, different lenses affect the laser differently.  Some may increase the strength of the laser but decrease the distance, or visa versa.

Different machines in the Nano tier might require different laser modulations, and/or accept a different range of laser strengths.  Stronger lasers will work to make them work faster, so long as they're within acceptable bounds.

Along with the lens mount, there are two more blocks to interact with lasers.

This block reflects an incoming laser at either of its configured faces, and puts it at its output.




This block can accept a laser at its main face, and splits the laser into two separate directions, each with half strength.  Alternatively, it can accept two lasers at the secondary faces, and it merges them together at the main face, totalling their strength and averaging their remaining distance.

The default modulation merges with these special modulations to join the special modulation.

However, add two specialized modulations together and their modulations interfere, decomposing them down to the default modulation.


Micro

    So, now that you have an idea of what I mean by 'extra mechanics', let me take a step back a tier.
This is the tier that I had the most trouble with, simply because I didn't know what I wanted to try and model.  Anytime I thought about a mechanical process, I was reminded by n0rw0lf that I had intended to have the micro tier be "Tesla"-ish, with lots of electricity and such.  The mechanical processes I had already committed to the Macro tier (that which comes before Micro, should I expand Femtocraft in that direction.)  

    However, a couple things came to a head this week and I finally got a decent idea out, which got refined by some good discussion in the irc channel (hint hint you should join in!).

    Computation!  Micro machines (and thus, potentially later tiers as well) have a computational requirement to performing certain operations.  For example, if you're decomposing, say, cobblestone, the machine will need to do some calculations to plan out how it's going to do that.  This will be modeled by a certain # of specific types of computation problems that the machine must complete.  The machines will have installed a minimal cpu, so that they are never deadlocked.  However, you upgrade their cpus so that they perform their computations much faster.  Continuing with the example, though, you will only need to perform the calculation for cobblestone once, so long as you continue to only decompose cobblestone.  Once you switch to a new type, the machine will need to compute new plan for decomposition.  

    Later tiers might have new computational problems that need to be solved, requiring newer generations of cpus.  I was thinking of also extending this to the research console.  Thus, technologies will have a computational requirement as well.  Upgrading your cpu increases the rate at which technologies will be researched.  However, again certain technologies may require solving new computational problems that older generations simply may not be able to solve, thus prompting newer generations of cpus in order to continue with your research.

Overall, though, it's pretty much self-contained, and a rather simple mechanic.  It also fits the theme rather well, which is why it quickly gained traction in my mind and is now most probably the micro mechanic (hence why I'm telling you about it now :)
)


Femto


So.  This one is fun.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Quick Update

Development is on hold until further notice.

As part of a class, I have to perform a replication study on a recent research paper.
This will take up the rest of my free time this semester until it is due, which is the end of April.

Unless I find someone else willing to work on learning Femtocraft's codebase and contributing towards it, that means Femtocraft's sole contributor (me) will not have any time to work on it.



As a result, though, I may have a system I can adapt to make a better path finding system for Minecraft (no more laggy-as-hell zombies.)  So there's that, at least.


As always, my email and other links are on the side.
I may or may not be in the #Femtocraft channel on irc.esper.net.  Feel free to join, though, there are many people who hang around in it who probably will answer questions if you have any :)



Until Summer...

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Mini Update

Hey everyone.

Two quick pieces of news.

One!  Industry rework is in the works.  Expect something good :)  When I have a working prototype you can be sure I'll share it.  Along with this, school work is decently easy for the first half of the semester, so I should be able to get some work done.  I might even pop up a surprise stream or two.  Expect them Wednesday/Friday, if I do them.

Two!  Our good friend n0rw0lf, developer of Femto Photonizers, a conversion of Femtocraft OP power to RF, has graciously lent his services as a graphics designer, and given us some kickass forum banners.  Feel free to use where you will.  If you can, please make them a link back here, so people know what you're excited about!



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[URL=http://femtocraft.blogspot.com/][IMG]http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-BRd7DZu2eVs/VMW-TfywSeI/AAAAAAAAAHg/gQEDyNwiihY/s1600/FEMTOPNG.png[/IMG][/URL]

Thanks for keeping with it, all!


Here's to more progress to come!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Thoughts for the future



 As you know, I unfortunately am stuck in development hell, which in this case is a lot to do with not a lot of time.  Additionally, I have no idea what my time requirements will be, nor how consistent they will be, during the school year.  And I have to worry about finding a job.

***This is a rant.  This is probably my last opportunity for the near future to discuss these kinds of things, so I'm putting out my own thoughts as they come to me so you all can try to understand***


So, as I said I would do, I took the opportunity after the first release to take a step back and breathe again.  During this time I just kind of looked around what I set out to do, and what almost two years later, have gotten a good amount started.  I started with a loose design document two years ago and with no modding experience at all.  What have I learned since?  I now have moderate knowledge of the block and tile entity system for minecraft, and not much else, to be completely honest.  I don't know how to make a custom in-game entity.  I can do some minor item interactions, but those are honestly not too difficult at all.  I don't know how to do custom world-gen beyond ores, such as structures or biomes.  And I definitely don't know how to do any visual fluff.  Other than basic modelling and textures, I'm kind of a mess.  I have never touched OpenGL-like code in my life, and just to fix the custom item rendering in GUIs took me a long weekend of twiddling flags until I found the right ones to make it work.  The particle code I shamelessly took from a modder tutorial.  However, I know I can still make a great mod with only block and tile interactions.  That's always been my favorite part of Minecraft, hence my focus towards learning those parts to begin with.  However, once I get a solid foundation in, I do want to branch out and attempt to learn some of the other bits and pieces as well.  That's just much further in the future.


Looking at the design of Femtocraft, I like some of the things I see, but honestly there's a good bit there that's definitely not what I initially had in mind.  The pervasiveness of the assembler/dissassembler, when combined with the fiddly-ness of the encoder, is a major issue right now that I'm looking to fix.  In fact, I'm trying to figure out industry in general for Femtocraft, since up until Nano all you ever touch is encoder recipes and the assembler.  Even then, you just occasionally pump a few items into one-way devices like the horologe or enmesher.

I definitely want to add a few more items that are used more actively than the horologe or enmesher, that take away the complete reliance on the encoder/reconstructor, saving it instead for finishing big items/blocks.

Power generation is definitely heading the direction I want it to take, which is emphasizing unique methods that aren't meant to be directly comparable to existing kinds.  The Fission reactor setup, though still needing a bit of tweaking, is around the correct level of complexity, I feel.  I bug fixed the Fusion reactor, so it now forms plasma circuits with conduits and plasma flows flow through it.  However, I have still no idea how I'm going to get some complexity with the system as a whole, despite having designed a cool system.  I just don't know how to run it.

Which brings me to my next point.  I am an ok designer.  Not a great one, but I like to think not a bad one.  Right now, with the stress of school and other things, I havn't had a great idea in weeks.  I would say months, but I got the idea of the Starforge recently and I think that would be a great late-game crafting station combination to have fun with.

The whole 'I would like to redesign the industry' is exactly that.  It's something I want to do, because I know the current setup won't cut it in the long run.  And the sooner I do it, the sooner there's a solid foundation to extend off of.  And that's what I'm good at designing for.  I mean, case in point, I'm working on a mod which is building off the solid foundation of Minecraft.  If I can get a solid foundation for myself, I know I can envision lots of cool things for it.

I just can't think of any ideas for it.  I can think of some ways to get started into Femtocraft, and if you follow the link above you can probably find it there, but the problem is I kind of designed myself into a hole that I now need to dig my way out of.  With the ease of decomposing and recomposing items, especially with the item/block finishing tie-in with assembler recipes going through the recomposer, there's really no machine in the femto tier that can't just be explained away with the decom/recomp/encoder trio.  When you can manipulate particles, it's kind of like, what's the purpose of these other machines then?  What can they do that those particle manipulators can't do?  That's where the horologe and enmesher sneak by, with their tie-ins to the fabric underlying reality (and thus particles), but even that's somewhat of a stretch.  So obviously, something needs to change.


Next Step Changes



Here's the problem.  If I make the dissassembler/reassembler much harder to utilize, then the EE-ness of the mod becomes harder yet.  And it's already pretty damn hard.  In one direction.  Dissassembling was intentionally made easy.  After all, it's easier to break things apart than put them back together.  Hammer vs. glue,  Wrecking ball vs. crane,....Fission vs. Fusion....  The problem comes where the dissassembler can be applied to almost anything, where as the assembler can only be applied to one item at a time (via schematics.)  When I've been doing designing, I have been thinking about different portions of the mod with specific preset player capabilities.  I.E.,  when starting the mod, the player already has mid-game progress in another industry mod.  When the player is in the nano tier, he should have a mob farm with a modest assortment of mods.  When in the Femto tier, he should be able to brave the Nether with very little fear, and have a fully functioning mob farm including Nether mobs.  When I was considering the decomposition/recomposition aspect of Femtocraft, I was envisioning a fully-functional AE system with quantum schematics for all Femtocraft decomposition items.  That would mean 6 Femto Reassemblers and 15 Nano Reassemblers, at minimum.  That would enable the player to make any micro molecule out of femto particles, with no cap on schematic usage.  If they wanted faster, they could use it all as femto reassemblers, etc.  Same with the old logistics pipes system, where a specific autocrafting table had to be set up with each recipe, so then would a micro reassembler be needed for each actual item to be made, that could be recomposed out of micro molecules.  The AE crafting system could then takeover from there, as it was now working in the purview of regular crafting and not assembler schematics.

The problem with this view is that the system is so damn complicated, fiddly, and usage limited (via schematics), that this has kind of become the ONLY way to use the system.  Other than a few simple micro-tier schematics, very few people other than the very dedicated or desperate minecrafter would dare venture into the nano, or goodness, the femto tier, and expect to do a full item-transmutation by hand.  And I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing.  On the one hand, I've done what I set out to do, which is take the EE2 system and make it harder to use.  Now I'm thinking I've made it too hard.  And at this point, if that's the case, then a good majority of Femtocraft is tied into a system designed to support a mechanic that in all likelihood won't be used. 

I've hit the point that I believe EE2 hit, which is the problem between usability and applicability.  If it's extremely usable, but not applicable, then it'll just get ignored.  If it's too usable and too applicable, like EE2, then it'll just overwhelm everything.  This mechanic will always be applicable.  I think that right now it's completely unusable except in the 'perfect' circumstance.

This is also completely ignoring the large mass requirement of schematics, with the only current way to produce mass being decomposing items.  That's a different thread yet.


Initial Vision



So, what I envisioned Femtocraft being.  I wanted it to be that mod that you could log in and look around, and think you were in alien base, or for the trekkies amongst you, a borg cube.  Something that would be how like Frankenstein's Laboratory is to the Renaissance period of technology, as to modern day technology, (which is the vast majority of Minecraft tech mods.)

I wanted big pulsing cables and lighting and random beeping noises, dangerous side effects and flashy tech.  I wanted something that, you show your friend, and the first thing out of his mouth is "Whoah", and the second is "How do I make this?"


As to what I envisioned, I think I'm close.  I love the look of the machines, especially the multiblocks.  Some could maybe do with a once-over from a better artist, but for the most part I love the aesthetic.  The cabling, though it took forever to make in code and was my first experiment in 3D Rendering in minecraft, is honestly far too bright. I was envisoning something more like the IC2 heavy cabling, with heavy-duty protection but you could see streaks of light leak out of viewing ports.  The 'power particle' though is nice.

The power multiblocks are awesome, and that's honestly a direction I want to go more into.  I want to make more things into multiblocks, because who doens't love multiblocks?  They look awesome, they're fun to make, and they're visually impressive.  When I'm redesigning the industry, I'm probably going to use a few multiblock structures as well.



Content


As I've said before, I do have ideas for things to build off of Femtocraft.  The main problem is getting Femtocraft core to a state where I feel it is good enough to deserve being built off of.

I have a mob-farm-like system slowly being designed, a block harvester in mind, and a player upgrade system being thought of as well.

I recently completed a spatial relocation framework for moving blocks and tile entities in the world, and I want to expand and stabilize that system for greater use.  Beyond just simple applications like swapping two blocks, or teleporting/carrying specific ones.  Imagine a piston that can push tile entities.  Or transposing a selection of blocks at a time.

For more ideas, look in the design docs.  They'll probably be the only thing I'll be touching for awhile, until I come up with something concrete.





***End Rant***


So...that was my last hour on my last night before classes really slam home.  This was as much for me as for you guys. I know I have high expectations for myself.  I don't want to disappoint you guys.  I don't want to disappoint myself, either!  When I set out I envisioned this as becoming one of the core mods of major modpacks.  Filling the role of a late-game system, where the game is less about getting a firm foundation and more about just having fun and letting your creativity loose.

I can feel how close it is to that.  It makes it all the more frustrating when I know it isn't, yet.  And it becomes extremely frustrating when I know how much I have yet to do and how little time I will have. 





Friday, January 9, 2015

And So It Begins...Again

Hey everyone,

Short update post.  Classes started this past Wednesday.  Looks to be a challenging final semester.  Will also be attempting to secure a job so I can stay alive and continue to work on this :)

Don't expect anything to come from me this semester, and you probably won't be disappointed.  I have busy work, major projects, and reading upkeep alike, so time will be short.  I might squeeze out a few things on breaks, but don't count on it.






As always, anyone who wants to try and help out is absolutely welcome.  Shoot me an email and/or join #Femtocraft on irc.esper.net.  Or if that's not your thing the code is open source and fork-able.
I know almost no one is likely to do this, but I figure I'll say it anyways on the off chance.  Just having one more person on a solo project is so helpful. 


Otherwise, other than a few furtive glances here and there, see you guys in about 4 months.  Then we'll see what the future holds.