Basicly I want to remake FASA’s version of the Starship Tactical Combat
Simulator as a fan-based project using 3d starship models (perhaps
opengl with full shaders and effects), animations for weapons and
manuevers, playable online, and eventually integrating a decent AI.
And I am willing to work with others…
Someone has already done this using VB; he created an excellent 2d
version shown here:
BUT he tells me his code is not compatible with OpenGL :( , nor does he
have time to recode his game.
3d modeling, animation, effects, and web based programming,
I have modded games in the past, but my hard programming skills (such
as C++) is very amature, yet I am a very QUICK study when it comes to
programming and very willing to learn almost anything to get the project
I already have several 3d models in 3dsmax ready to go.
Game rules and stats have already been designed (more than 25 years
ago), although I am as yet undecided whether it should be turn based, or
real time with a tactics and strategy emphasis.
Your thoughts and direction is GREATLY appreciated on where to start.
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You have to decide if you want to go through the copyright issues for
Star Trek. Lucas Arts is pretty strict about it and has killed quite a
few fan based games. BTW FASA quit because they lost their Star Trek
licensing. Many of these games were near completion when they were
killed and fans had spent years of work on them.
That would be #1. Most engines that have peer to peer networking would
work for it. It’s not really worth writing it in Opengl unless you are
into it. I would suggest changing the name and not using anything
Lets assume that the licensing is not an issue (and I will take some
time to rsearch that) as the trek game at slightlysilly.net has gone
forward as a non-profit project.
Lucasarts is draconian with their copyright protection (how about the
guy that got sued for making bobba fett and strom trooper hoodies to
sell) - just as they should be, however the Star Trek universe is not so
tightly controlled when it comes to fan-art and fanfiction. I have NO
intention of selling this game.
Just so you know that the same rules apply to fan made games as for any
game. I personally would never contribute to one. I’ve been in the
adventure game community and know about fan games closed down by Lucas
Arts, but also many haven’t. It depends on popularity, but their lawyers
can send a notice at any time and there is nothing you can do about
I haven’t really seen Paramount or CBS put pressure on fan made content,
but they can if they decide to. Nevertheless, just plan ahead of time to
change the name and theme if they do come knocking. It’s not like it’s
difficult to make any other space type game.
As for the game itself, you should start planing. I don’t mean daydream
about it, but actually document something. You can start
a high level overview with some missing topics, but that’s because there
are books out there that cover this sort of thing in detail. I just want
to present to you an idea how you should start with proper development.
Once you have the architect and storyboards laid out for your game, you
will have a clear picture of what needs to be done and what you will
need to do, or who you will need to find (if applicable) to help you
achieve those goals.
It is true and before ST: First Contact came out there were lots of
cease and desist letters sent out to fan-based trek sites, it was
because paramount wanted to create a website of its own to promote the
However since it is a ‘dirivitive’ work that will incorporate a lot of
original content; in court (if it goes that far) it should fall into the
fair use terms of Copyright laws.
And what about the Star Trek online foundry - talk about a HUGE user
generated content legal grey area - dirivitve fan fiction and stories,
although sponsored by a lisenced company, is pretty subjective.
Now that Viacom and Paramount are partners they have allowed MANY
fan-based films, fiction, and games, to go forward…
Either way - I am making this game and determined to see it through.
Hell, I would even pay for consultation with a copyright lawyer. Even if
I am told to cease and desist by CBS/Paramount/Viacom then I will have
at least gained a great deal of game-making experience for future
projects or to add to my portfolio.