Dev Diary #3 - Visual customization
Posted on July 06, 2016
Hello, everyone!

Today we’ll talk about visual customization options in Galactic Junk League. This is the second part of our entry on ship construction. Check out the first part about functional design here .

Currently two features are implemented - skins and color tints. Another one is in production - visual add-ons - and a few more are being designed. Both skins and color tints function similarly to other games.


Concept art for the Pirates skin set including a proposed ship design. This will be the first premium skin set available in the Game Shop.


Skins

Skins are visual variations of the same construction block that share attributes. At the start of the game each block has a default rusty metallic look typical for the world of Galactic Junk League. As the player progresses through the game he’ll get access to more exciting skin sets like “Pirates”, ”Aliens”, ”Retro”, ”Organic” or perhaps even ”Vikings” or ”Cats in space!”. The only limit will be the imagination of our artists and of our player community. So run to the forums and write your ideas now :-)! Currently, skins may be selected in build mode (default key is Z), but we’re planning to include this option also into the Block Inventory.

One more thing - since the core gameplay of Galactic Junk League is planned to be free-to-play, most skins will be purchasable through microtransactions. We think this is a good solution for our entire community as skins won’t have any effect on the balance of the game. We’ll talk about the planned business model for the game in another dev post.


All skins of a specific block share the same parameters. The Pirates skin set will include skins for all weapon types, thrusters and several add-ons.


Color tints

Of course it’s possible to color tint building blocks. The current paint system isn’t very user friendly because it allows to pick the color only before the block is placed (default key C). This is a remnant of an abandoned paint system and we’re currently working on a simpler one. It will allow to paint all blocks at the same time, with the same color palette even after they’ve been placed and even in groups. So hang in there until  then.


Add-ons

Another big visual customization feature are visual add-ons. These are blocks that improve the ship’s looks, but they don’t have an effect on the its performance. These include various antennas, satellite dishes, wings, lights, neons, bridges, observation decks, flags, spoilers, golden spinning rims, huge shark-head front bumpers, christmas lights and anything else that will add a little swag to your ship and give it that unique look you’ve always wanted! Even more than with skins the sky’s the limit to the possibilities. You’ll be able to unlock some visual blocks through progression and some will be available through microtransactions.

The Alpha features an early version of add-ons - they function as construction blocks. Beta will include improved form of add-ons - they may be placed almost anywhere on the ship including on armor plates, they won’t take any damage and won’t block line of sight of turrets but also won’t have any HP.

What else do we have in store? Over the course of production we have already discussed visual features such as custom decals for the ship (i.e. logos or the ship’s name painted on its side), skins for particle effects, skins for the entire hangar, different visuals for the user interface etc. Which visual customization features would you like to see in the game? Let us know in the Forum.


See you next time
Martin “Gajxo” Gajarsky

Game Designer