We are Crowbox, an independent game developer from Germany and we are currently working on the release of our first game EndCiv. We are still in an early phase but progress is being made rapidly. You can use this Blog for the latest news and information about the game and the progress of development. If you are not familiar with our ideas you should first check out this page for the concept and key features.
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Now there is a video development log where I want to show you the recent progress of the game and what you can expect in the future. Please subscribe and follow us over there.
In case you can not find a video, click here.
Footage of the current state of ENDCIV. As you can see we still have a lot of work to do but we are also in good condition to make further progress.
Let us know what you think and don’t miss to vote for us on Steam Concepts!
We are also on IndieDB, Twitter and Facebook.
I had to create some solar cells and was looking for textures. Unfortunately I didn’t find anything usable; especially I was missing a raw texture of the bluish cells themselves with good variations and as a tillable texture.
I started thinking of how it could be achieved. Reference patterns appeared to consist of sharp and random shapes and I thought a distortion effect would help me.
After messing around with Photoshop I came up with this:
This might not be a real solar cell pattern but it is close enough for me, especially I can edit and tweak it as I want.
This tutorial is not aimed for pure beginners. You should have some knowledge of image editing. Photoshop was used but it should be achievable with similar techniques with other tools
We experimented with an idea of mesh morphing to accomplish nice decomposition of bodies in the game.
Like the effect? Here is the script!
The result already is nice, but it needs a lot of more work to look more sophisticated. Research on that topic is nasty but interesting and we will try to make it both believable but not too morbid.
One important stage is to make the skeleton visible to some extend as well as to add “insects interacting”.
Is this even important to the game?
Persistence, believability and moral aspects are key points of the game. You will notice!
We want to thank all applicants for the Programmer and 3D Artist job. Now we do not look for any other applicant.
The Job ads where a great success. There have been very interesting persons and we are very happy with the results and the people that we met. After 1 week we received over 130 applications and we investigated the vast majority of them. Due to the mass we were unable to inform or reply to the majority of you.
After the details have been clarified we will inform you about our choice. We believe that our new team members will help us immensely to make progress on ENDCIV and to meet the deadline.
Kevin Scheitler – Crowbox
Currently I am working on the second version of a city generator. The logic is based on the recent concept art.
City? What does it mean to ENDCIV?
Cities in ENDCIV are a source of goods in the first place. Cities and buildings are not meant to be occupied by the player, there are various reasons for that.
Cities can rather be seen as a dungeon. There are important goods to be found but also there are often strangers. In some cases locations are occupied by barbarians and the player has to fight them first in order to gather goods.
Also some important structures such as a well or farmland are very inefficient near cities so this is not a good place for a settlement.
These are the goals of the algorithm:
This week I want to discuss the AI system which ENDCIV is going to use. Quite early in the development it was clear that a thing called Utility AI will be used. For those of you who are unaware of that system, this post is an introduction.
Utility AI basically does mean that we calculate and assign the utility, a rating, for any possible action and chooses the one with the highest value. That basically is what each of us does all day, subconsciously or consciously. Also we do not just go through a finite set of possibilities but we take any possibility into account in once.
Imagine there is an AI agent Joe in the supermarket and he wants to buy a can of soda.
The first thing he would
First of all, we need a new website host. Isn’t that page slow?
The work that has been done the last few weeks was mostly design and management work. But the plans are now very clear. Still in summer we plan to have the alpha version ready for gameplay video footage. If things work out fine there will be an Early Access version in autumn.
For the first version we will concentrate on the very core features which are resource management and city building. Combat, trading and exploration will come in later.
Let me show you the scope of the (final) game. Those numbers can still increase.
• 35 Unique structures
• 40 Commodities
• 15 Tools and weapons
• 6 Animals
Some of the content has been listed in the Gamedesign insights post.
Next on there
The game concept had some issues of which we were aware of early on and we decided to re-elaborate some things. After a quite huge redesign we finally decided to cut all the recent changes and go with the initial design of EndCiv and rethink some of the aspects.
The new concept resulted in far more consistent gameplay mechanics. To get an overview of the game, read on.
EndCiv is a post apocalyptic strategy game with city building elements. The major challenge for the player is to build-up a settlement and defend it against various threads. Some of the resources are directly connected to the environmental simulation such as animal population and weather, dependent on daytime, season, rain and wind.
Major resources are:
Synthetic: Plastic waste of the past civilization
Scrap: Metallic and
On December last year we successfully failed at our Indiegogo campaign.
Quite some things happened since then. We elaborated other opportunities to fund the project but none of those were compelling. As a result Kutsarit had to left after half of a year without any income.
Thanks for your support buddy!
A few days ago our Indiegogo campaign ended with an unsatisfying result.
First of all we want to thank all our backers for their support. Because we used fixed funding you should have got your money back already.
What happens next?
Good news first, we still continue to develop the game.
There are several alternatives to fund the project and until then we will work on the core mechanics of the game.
We need some time to let things settle and rework some of the game concepts. Once we are back on track we will let you know.
What went wrong?
As a team we only worked 4 months on the game (not four years as some might assumed) and were able to implement many features and systems for the game. But there was no
Today I want to point out how the simulation of citizens works. Each human like entity in the game is based on the same logic and parameters.
EndCiv is not just is a town simulation with random people. Furthermore you can be able to build a certain relationship to each individual citizen. For instance, the death of a living being is something that can take hours and days and is not just an unexpected switch from alive to dead.
Citizens have 6 needs which have to be satisfied constantly. Hydration, saturation and health are primary needs and are important to keep the unit alive. The secondary needs can affect satisfaction and productivity of a unit.
When Hydration is low a citizen dehydrates and finally dies.
When Saturation is low a citizen becomes
Map generation and ecosystem
From now on I want to explain single features of the game in more detail.
Maps are generated procedurally by various parameters. The map is a flat wasteland with lots of scrap and ruins, but we can imagine adding different kind of map types later on which each tells another story of world destruction.
The location is at a small town but the surface is completely destroyed and perforated by meteors. The remaining ruins contain construction material as well as items such as canned food, weapons or rare materials. Rare materials are pieces of solar panels, chemicals, mechanical parts, surgery stuff and other things that help your citizens to survive.
The image above shows a small part of the map of the first generation test. The blue areas
Thanks to all the contributions!
5 days passed and just 5% reached. It could be better, but we still have time to make this campaign popular.
Unlike most indie and single developers I have started EndCiv from an Art-Director point of view, just because this is the part of game development I like the most. At the beginning I spent more time on the technical and artistic aspects of the game than coding and evolving basic mechanics.
As a team we only worked 4 months on the game and were able to implement many features and systems for the game. But to stitch them together for a nice gameplay experience we still need some time.
The average feedback and commentary for the concept is great and I still believe that we are
Here it is, the crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo. Watch the video, read the description and pledge any amount so we can be able to realize this project. Most of the rewards are only available for the crowdfunding campaign, so don’t hesitate so get a copy of the game right now! Here is the link.
We would be happy about your feedback.