The coronavirus crisis is also an enormous challenge for some game developers. Rockfish Games has moved the work on Everspace 2 to the home office, but the measure seems to be successful: In a current production update for Everspace 2, the Hamburg developers are giving a foretaste of the so-called planetary levels. The space loot shooter is scheduled to go into Early Access in December 2020.
Everspace 2: Spaceship tinkering thanks to the modular system
It is no surprise that Everspace 2 relies on a modular component system. However, the developers are now announcing further details, including the look of the self-made spaceships. Players assemble their aircraft from a large number of different ship models made up of hulls, wings, stern / stern engines, cockpits and attachments.
And that should also look particularly pretty: Thanks to new texturing and modeling techniques, fans can enjoy much higher per-pixel details on the outer and inner surfaces of the ships. Furthermore, each player ship can be individually designed with a primary, secondary and tertiary color, which also influences the color of luminous ship elements.
In order to avoid the fact that there are only a number of generic-looking player ships, the developers at Rockfish Games have spent a lot of time - and also effort - defining specific design rules for main and subship classes and their ship components. In this way, it can be seen at first glance which sub-class a certain ship model belongs to, while at the same time the ship should still look individual.
Found devices "level" with
Devices in the predecessor to Everspace 2 were modules with active or passive effects that could be looted as prey by opponents and built into your own ship. While active devices had to be controlled in a targeted manner, their passive counterparts offered permanent bonuses or other advantages after installation. This RPG-like feature will still exist, but in a modified form.
Devices are now linked directly to the player's progress, so they remain unlocked and can therefore be built into the spaceship as desired. Passive devices, on the other hand, have been replaced by equipment such as armor and energy cores.
In addition, device modes now come into play, with which devices can be additionally configured. "A maximum of three of these modes can be activated per device, whereby only one can be activated at the same time," says the developer. The devices could be adapted to suit the style of play - powerful synergies will also be possible, so that the spaceship tinkering gets significantly more depth. Unlocking modes requires special tokens that can be collected through leveling up or as rewards for missions.
Explore foreign worlds
Exploring new and strange planets - that is also one of the main goals of the game in Everspace 2. From the developer's point of view, this can be achieved through procedurally generated worlds. This allows hundreds or thousands of explorable planets to be created. However, there is a catch: the gameplay can suffer as a result, among other things because scripted - and thus exciting - events are more difficult to implement in relation to a story campaign.
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Rockfish Games therefore relies on handcrafted worlds: "In order to offer the best gaming experience and to give each of the locations a great deal of relevance, there will only be a certain number of handdesigned planetary locations in Everspace 2. These can be perfectly staged and explored down to the smallest detail," says the Hamburg game developer.
This step shows once again how important the story of Everspace 2 is to the developers - and that the space game will probably be more than just a loot shooter in space in the end. Fans can convince themselves of this at the latest with the start of the Early Access phase on Steam, which is currently planned for December 2020.
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