Astrobase Command – 70’s Space Station Builder & Crew Sim
As the invisible administrative hand of an Astrobase in a forgotten corner of the universe, your crew depend on you for their survival.
About this project
Procedural Personalities Meet 3D Base Building, and Survival.
Leaders know that their crew’s personalities are at least as important as their skills when entrusting them with key responsibilities. Every choice you make will be the difference between life and death in the void. Do you have what it takes?
Build the 3D space station of your dreams and handle a tide of paperwork as your crew members, driven by powerful personality-based AI, tend to their jobs as they see fit while developing friendships, rivalries, and romances along the way.
Space isn’t a gentle place. Your crew works hard to keep the station running while maintaining a work-life balance or their bodies, relationships, and mental-health will suffer!
Create your species on a visual and statistical level, so they look and play the way you want. A species of super-intelligent anti-social clones? We’ve got you covered. Tough and genetically diverse dimwits? No problem! When we say “create your own species” we mean it.
- Build Space Stations in Full 3D!
Do you think games with side or overhead 2D base building are in dire need of another dimension? So do we! Your Astrobase can be as large or small as you want, along any axis!
- Hire and Promote Crewmembers That Fit Your Style:
Scrutinize the personnel files your Recruiting Officer dumps into your inbox and hire the characters with the job skills, stats, and personality traits that you need to run your Astrobase.
Carefully balance the mix of personalities to create the working environment you desire. While it is natural to promote a handful of your key characters to lofty levels, it’s also fine to leave others as trusted and highly skilled lower ranking specialists. Not everyone needs to become an Admiral, and Admirals are expensive.
- Procedural Personalities and Procedural Storytelling:
You can’t control your crew; but you’ll command them. Each member of the crew decides what needs to get done, and how, based on their individually generated personalities and personalized history. As characters interact in their daily routine, the drama of life unfolds.
- Deep Relationships and Character Life:
Characters have their own lives. Watch them live it!
We have been self-funded since 2013 while developing Astrobase Command. This entails ongoing contracts working on other games to cover basic living costs, which are thankful to have! However, these contracts curtail the amount of time we have available to work on our own creation.
After consulting our community, the response was very clear: use Kickstarter for finishing capital to provide the development focus and studio independence needed to cross the finish line in a timely manner.
In response, we turn to you, our fans. We are closing in on “feature complete” for the 1.0 game version, but we need to add the polish to ensure a quality release. This is where the journey starts!
Build a 3D Astrobase from modular and gameplay-customizable sections, and then assign your personality-driven crew to jobs to keep the simulation running.
Factors like resource logistics and power distribution are modeled in detail. From the custodians and maintenance personnel, to the top scientists and engineers, it is your organization to build!
The RPG system in Astrobase Command is skill-based, supplemented by stats, to determine crew performance and productivity, plus the procedural personalities which influence all gameplay. There is also morale, non-trivial health, and the things one would expect from an RPG simulation made by professionals.
In Astrobase Command you manage the crew at a high level. The characters have minds of their own, and you have no direct control over their decisions and actions. You give the assignments, while their personalities decide the best way to achieve whatever goals and needs they have.
Perhaps personal conflicts will emerge, potentially hurting the characters’ productivity, or worse. Or maybe two complimentary personalities forge deep bonds between the characters, improving their performance, and who knows? Space love?
There are no right or wrong, or optimizable personalities. Every character has his or her own strengths and weaknesses depending on a given situation. It’s up to you to manage whatever society of individuals you deem necessary to keep the Astrobase functioning.
Your crew have memories. Some events will have little importance and will eventually fade in their memories. Others will stick in their minds and shape the way characters evolve and how they interact with each other.
What could be more fun than building your own space station? Well, filling out the reams of paperwork that come with running such a fine institution!
Astrobase Command foregoes conventional UI in favour of fully immersing you in the universe.
Plug different cartridges into the Datapad to access the various apps that let you to plan and direct your crew’s activities, build your Astrobase, promote personnel, and manage your resources.
You’ll also receive a steady stream of reports and recruitment files that you’ll have to work your way through. Find the balance that suits your gameplay. Be a “Big picture” commander and don’t sweat the details, or get into the weeds and enjoy every report. It’s all up to you.
You want to play a game that isn’t trying to shoehorn you into a specific way of playing, and experience a unique adventure with every play through. We’ve built the simulation on a deep procedural foundation, with special focus on the characters individualized personalities and their interpersonal interactions. This in turn sits on a sandbox, where you can build the Astrobase in your mind.
No two stories will emerge the same.
Jellyfish Games is an independent Montreal-based game company made up of industry vets. We’re making the games we’ve always wanted to play. We enjoy deep, systems-driven games that reward the player for creativity and skill, as well as give them a good laugh and some epic watercooler stories to share with friends.
We also believe that the key to making Astrobase Command as good as it can be is to involve the community as much as possible.
Credit cards aren’t your thing? We can hook you up via PayPal. Your support will still count towards meeting our stretch goals.
SPECIAL THANKS TO MAAT LANDER AND THE ØRESUND SPACE COLLECTIVE
We want to highlight our friends at Maat Lander and Øresund Space Collective’s fabulous support by letting us use some of their super cool music in some of our videos. The track comes from their recently launched collective split LP.
Maat Lander’s Bandcamp page.
Risks and challenges
Making games is a risky business.
The truth of the games industry is that for every game that makes it to launch, there are a hundred you’ve never heard of which died somewhere during development, for very typical reasons. This has been the case long before Kickstarter existed, and Kickstarter exposes backers to the situation by its nature.
After 3.5 years of self-funded development on Astrobase Command, there exists a functional game that needs polish, balance, and testing/bugfix before it can be released to the 1.0 version which will serve as a stable foundation for a bright future of post-launch updates and content.
With any Kickstarter, the major risk to you, the backer, is that the campaign succeeds but the development of the game crashes and burns, leaving only broken hearts, lame excuses, and a cynical sense of being scammed. We’ve been there as gamers ourselves!
Being a self-funded studio means we’ve been using our own money, and paying for one’s own mistakes is a great motivator to learn from them. The development pipelines are in place, the team has been working together for years, our monthly studio burn-rate is a known quantity, the v1.0 design is finished, and the game is nearly feature complete in code. We also have a great community whom we love and can’t let down!
Everything in the Kickstarter campaign exists in this reality, and not merely as a sketch and a bunch of cool sounding words.
What’s left is the very necessary, but fortunately much better known quantity of taking a game from feature complete to ready-for-release. Experience says it will cost the dollar value of this campaign goal, taking everything into account. Chances are as a backer you are also a savvy gamer! So you understand that bugs, glitches, or badly polished aspects can cripple an otherwise great game. You’ve played these games and lamented “If only they spent 3 more months in beta, this would have been awesome…”
Well, here we are!