Salvage Trader Tools

I’m happy to report that work on Salvage Trader is progressing. Every week I send out an email with the latest news and a link to the freshest alpha build. This simple commitment keeps me productive and the game moving forward. Scroll to the bottom of this post to sign up!

Salvage Trader, main map as it looks in alpha.The goal is to launch a Kickstarter campaign when the game is ready to go into beta, and hopefully fund the last leg of the journey this way.

First, I’d like to share a list of the tools I’m using to develop the game, starting with the engine itself…

Gamesalad

Being a drag-and-drop engine makes development of small games very fast, though it certainly also has its limitations. There is no actual coding in Gamesalad, though it helps greatly if you have programming experience enough to know how the logic behind it works. It will help you set up behaviors of the individual actors within the game and pass information around behind the scenes. As far as the limitations go, they include bug hunting and occasional strange behavior. Gamesalad is great for many things, but I do sometimes feel I’m pushing its limits with Salvage Trader.

Graphics

I happen to use Photoshop CS5, which for the simple graphics I’ve been adding is more than plenty. If you don’t have Photoshop, you can just as easily use Gimp or any other program that lets you draw things and save them as png files. Animations are just a series of png files strung together in Gamesalad, and since the engine does not support video playback there’s nothing to worry about in that department.

Sound and Music

For creating 8-bit sound effects on the fly, Bfxr is a little gem. I start out creating a bunch of random sounds, until something good happens. Then I tweak it a bit to make it better, save it and add it to the game. For making music for the game, I simply use Garageband which comes with every Mac and a cheap USB keyboard (M-Audio Keystation 49e, for those who care).

Mailing list

If you would like to play the alpha version of the game and receive updates on its progress, sign up for the mailing list using the form below.


My first Kickstarter will be a Space Trader game

Salvage Trader, behind the scenes.
On the day the pirates came, the small colony you grew up in was destroyed. In a manner of minutes your loved ones were dead and your home going up in flames. Without any hope of victory, you put your faith in an old shuttle from the junk yard you worked in, hoping it would hold together long enough for an escape. It barely did, only now you found yourself alone in space, without a home or a family, but with a burning desire for vengeance. Only one group holds enough power to take on the dreaded pirate kings, and so you set out to build a new life for yourself and join the Salvager’s Guild… Continue reading