Wednesday, July 31, 2013

[Art] Starbound Sprite: Tak, the Floran Hunter


Someone requested a Floran on the Starbound Forums and I was feeling the need for an art break so here is my latest spritework:

Tak, the Floran Hunter

Hope you guys like him.


Sunday, July 28, 2013

[SBX:I] Week 4: End of the Campaign / Final Boss Time


Well the campaign is done mostly.  There are some balancing things, some bug fixes, the ending credits and a few other things for the main campaign to finish up but things are coming along nicely.

The big bad boss was a lot of work and he's pretty beastly in the game.  I'll still need some feedback on how he feels / if he doesn't make his appearance enough / etc etc, but he's in the game and now I can tune him.

Mostly what is new is the Final Level, a new Website (check the button on the sidebar) and a bunch of other little things.

Lightning Turrets now bounce exponentially (to 2 enemies per bounce) and Arc Flash Turrets bounce to 3 instead of 2.  This makes them feel stronger while letting me reduce a lot of the power.  They'll bounce to a shitload of enemies and are stronger the more enemies there are.  They are niche turrets, you don't want to use them against lots of high, single target enemies, but they work great against massive groups.

Here is a screen shot of the final boss:

He's got a hefty arsenal of powerful weapons and a MASSIVE health pool.

With Powerful Rockets, Defense Piercing Lasers, Scattering Blast Shots and a Cargo Hold FILLED with all your favorite baddies, he'll push your defenses to the limit.

Up next week will be a bunch of tuning for the levels, some possible art reworks, the Unlimited Levels and planning for the challenge levels.  

Once the Unlimited Random and Challenge Levels are completed I'll be opening the game up for Beta to get some final testing and polish before release.

Also once Jim finishes the final song for the last 2 levels I'll post it up here.  It's a good one from what I have heard so far.



Friday, July 26, 2013

[Art] Starbound Sprite: Ray, the Dueling Hylotl


Here is some fan art I drew today to get my creative engine started.  It took me 2 hours (longer than I had wanted to spend doing it but it was fun.)

I wanted to draw out some Hylotl Pixel art so here he is:

Ray, the Dueling Hylotl

I'll continue work on SBX:Invasion for the rest of the day but I hope you enjoyed the small art break!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

[WSS] New Website for Wakeskater Studio!

Wakeskater Studio:

  Over the past 2 days I've been working on getting a website up and running for my business!  And it's coming along decently.  It's certainly not done yet, but it has a lot of functionality already.

That's the website and this blog is now linked to it as:  There is also a hyperlink button to the side =>  that you can click to get to the website as well.

So far I have a personal page up that has info on me, a few cool graphics and a game download page where you can download SBX and it has some info on SBX:Invasion.  I'll probably have a dedicated SBX:Invasion page once the game is closer to release.  The last thing left to do tomorrow is the Media Page with screen shots and whatnot.

I've been teaching myself HTML and CSS and the entire site has been made by me without any kind of building tool.  It's actually a lot of fun, I've never really gotten into HTML before.  

Well, check it out if you haven't and look for more soon on the website!

~Jason Carter / WakeskaterX

Saturday, July 20, 2013

[SBX:I] Week 3: Levels 8&9 - Burnout and Boston Post Mortem


  It was a rough week.  I got burnt out about halfway through the week working on the last building system for SBX Inv.  It just took a lot out of me, either because I wasn't at my best or for some other reason but I've just been exhausted this week.  I took things in chunks, worked as much as I could and called it quits when my brain was emitting smoke from the ears.

  I got my first taste of burnout but it was a learning experience.  I felt completely burnt out Tues and Thurs, but more productive Wed and Fri.  When I came back on Friday after barely getting my Repair system done, my mind was fresh, I was able to figure out some of the small problems I couldn't wrap my head around the day before and I completed all I wanted to do that day.

  We did get all our stuff last weekend and it is nice to finally have a nice office chair.  Although the weather has been absurdly hot and my office has been pretty warm.  I don't have an A/C in the office but that may change if the weather doesn't.

  I also went to the Boston Post Mortem (local IGDA chapter) this past Tues and it was a lot of fun!  A few guys gave a speech on their 3d Animation and Rigging tools for use within Maya.  They demo'd their set up, and even though I have never done anything with rigging it looked fairly simple (compared to the alternative they showed).  You can check out their stuff at:

  I had a nice chance to meet a bunch of kids looking to get into the industry as well as talk to one of the developers over at Anzovin.  It was a good time and I met two people that speak Japanese!  The odds!  (Well at event involving video games I suppose they're higher and one of them was Japanese).  Anyway it was a ton of fun and there were lots of people, I was very surprised, and I look forward to the future IGDA meetings there and also the Boston Festival of Indie Games ( coming up in Sept.

  I didn't have any business cards to hand out at the BPM so I made some to have to give out.  Check out my new temporary home made business cards:

SBX: Invasion:

  Lots got done this week, level 8 and 9 are pretty much finished and I've begun work on the Final Boss.  I have a feeling I am going to go back and tune level 8 and 9 a bit and level 9 is pretty laggy because so much is on the screen at one time, but other than that they're pretty intense and fun.

  The repair drones took me the longest to figure out.  Basically I needed them to find a path to anywhere within 3 blocks of the target so they could use their beam to repair it.  This gives them flexibility to find a path to repair turrets deep within blocks but requires them to search 3 giant circles around the target structure.  I fried my brain working on this one but when I came back the next day, there were only a few minor bugs to iron out and it worked great!

  I also purchased Game Maker: Studio, but haven't yet ported the project over.  There are a bunch of things I'll need to change on the back end when I do.  It'll allow me to purchase ports to Linux and Mac but for now I'm focusing on getting the core game structure finished.  After the campaign I'm thinking of adding challenge levels or something along those lines.

So what is new with version 17?  Let's check it out!

Version 0_017 patch notes:

  • Level 8 is finished.  You are in the midst of an asteroid field and must defend from a dual attack. Smaller more numerous enemies will spawn from the North West and larger, more powerful enemies will spawn from the South East.
  • New 'Gasser' type enemy is introduced in Level 8.  It will spawn trails of gas that expand and corrode your buildings.  When destroyed it will release a massive burst of gas.  The gas fades over time and blocks you from building in that area.
  • Level 9 is finished.  You start with a massive base against 5 portals!  Enemies will continuously rush your base and try to finish you off.  You must build massive defenses to keep up with the rush of enemies.  Ore Economy is key.

  • In level 9 you have access to the Repair Drone Facility.  This facility will allow you to build Repair Drones.  These drones will seek out damaged structures and repair them slowly with their repair beam.  

  • Increased the damage and range of the lightning turret.  It was too weak for the cost and just didn't FEEL powerful.  now it should help take care of those bunching enemies that can pose such a problem to your single target turrets.
  • There is now a Game Guide that comes with the Zip File.  This guide has details on all the stats on structures and enemies, gives you tips and tactics, and tells you a lot about the game in general.
  • New Graphics for most of the Building Structures.

Well the main campaign is nearly finished!  That's pretty exciting.  I still have an Unlimited level to do that will score you on how long you can last and will be slightly random.  I've started using Trello as a Dev Tracking service to keep track of the things I am working on, set myself due dates for systems and levels and try to give myself a sort of time track to follow.

This way I'll be able to see how I'm pacing myself and estimate a completion date.

That's it for today, hope you enjoyed reading a little about my new experience as an Indie Dev!


 ~ Jason / WakeskaterX

Friday, July 12, 2013

[SBX:I] Week 2: Level 6 & 7 - Optimization!


It's been a good week, a long week of working and programming.  I'm excited for this weekend because our stuff comes tomorrow!  So I won't have a shitty chair anymore, and then the Internet is getting fixed Monday.  Hurrah!


Lots has been added this week.  Level 6 and 7 are finished, and much has been added on the back end.  Ghost Mode has been added as well.

Version 0_00_15 Patch Notes:

  • Ghost Mode has been added:  Pressing R will now disable building, but allow you to fly through walls.  You can go back to Build Mode with R or by Right Clicking to cancel Ghost Mode.  Ghost Mode replaces the old long range mode from before.  Here are some screenies:\
Normal Mode:

Ghost Mode:

  • Menu Music!  A nice slow beat now plays during the Level Select and Options Screens.
  • Level 6 and 7 are out!  You can now defend the frozen glacier belt of Level 6 and defeat the massive Satellite Laser Boss in Level 7!  
 Level 6:  Glacier Belt

Level 7:  The Orbital Defense Satellite

  • 2 New Enemy types!  The Cargo Bomber which will release Kamikaze Bombers when it get's destroyed and the Turret Builder enemy!  These 2 guys are tough and will force you to think up new strategies.
Enemy G:

Enemy H:

  • You can now turn on Quick Text:  It'll deactivate a lot of questions and checks that appear throughout the game to streamline your experience!  
  • Also there is a larger Building Structures List!  It's much easier to see and read now and is about 50-60% larger than the old one.
New Building Structures List:

  • Updated Pathfinding:  One of the big back end things that was finished this week was a revamp of Miner and Enemy Type: Sabo pathfinding.  They now check for multiple paths, and then prioritize which ones are the most efficient.  It fixed a lot of issues and is a much better and more solid system than before.
  • The Placement System is more accurate.  It now adjusts placement of buildings to feel more natural and more accurate.
  • Enemy Staggering.  When Enemies Pile up, they will stagger just slightly so you can see them easier.
  • Split Error Messages and Enemy Drop Messages.  Error Messages are larger and more noticeable as they are much more important.  They now are a bit to the right of the drop numbers from enemy kills.
  • You can now press 1-5 to select the Structure in your currently selected Category.

Well that's most of the big stuff.  So many little things were done this week too!  If you want to be added to the alpha tester list, shoot me an e-mail at: and I'll put ya on the list for the next alpha testers.

I'm recruiting another 5 testers at this time, so feel free to contact me if you're interested.

Cheers and have a good weekend!

~WakeskaterX / Jason~

Saturday, July 6, 2013

[Art] Starbound Sprite: Novakid

I was bored so I drew a sprite of a NovaKid from Starbound.  Here it is:


Friday, July 5, 2013

[SBX:I] Week 1 of Full Time indie development coming to a close.

Well week 1 of being an indie is coming to a close.  It was a slow start this week as I was sick for the first portion and then busy with the 4th of July but overall it was a good start to the week.  My wife and I are still waiting on the majority of our stuff to arrive, but we are surviving.

We tried to pick up some internet but apparently our place isn't wired properly so it's a no-go until Sun.  For now we just mooch off the Vet practice downstairs with it's abysmal internet quality.

Lots has been done on SBX:Invasion.  I've got a few people testing the game out for me, a nice little team of dedicated Alpha testers.  I opened it up on Reddit for up to 10 testers to join the Alpha team, but I only have 5 people at the moment.  That works out great though as it's not too many to have problems organizing feedback.

A LOT of things have been fixed/added and improved with suggestions.  So let's take a look at the patch notes:

Version 0_00_11 Patch Notes

  • Options Menu Added - You can now select volume settings and a few varying resolutions.
  • New Title Screen Graphics
  • Added Build Panel.  You can now click on icons to select buildings as well as use hot-keys.
  • Added a Level Between 1 and 2 that is the new Level 2.  It serves as another Tutorial type level.
  • Level Select now starts on farthest level attained.
  • When you lose the level the base blows up and there is a bit more feedback letting you know you lost.
  • Removed some double questions for exiting game and replaced with a pseudo menu.
  • Removed some bugs with Cheat options and Intro screen.
  • Added Fade Text during Tutorials to let you know what to do.
  • Added multiple start options instead of just Enter at title screen.
  • Streamlined new game text.
  • Fixed Sell/Upgrade Buttons to work when InfoScreen is minimized.
  • Builds now show when you hit a category and stay on screen after building for quicker builds.
  • Escape now cancels the build selection.
  • Increased Difficulty on Level 2, slightly reduced difficulty on Level 5.

Screen Shots of new stuff!

New Title Screen Graphics:

Base Destroyed Graphic:

New Build Panel:  (it's a bit too small in game)

New file downloads will only be available to alpha testers at this time.  If you are interested in testing for the game let me know there are a few spots left!  And rewards to come with it.  Check out the reddit post here:

Things are going well and tomorrow should be a busy week!