Monday, September 14, 2009

A New Podcast

I keep saying this and it doesn't happen, but who knows this time it might be true: "I'm going to start writing here more often."

In any case, I just want to put the word out about a new Star Frontiers themed podcast called Whispers from the Void. The plan is for it to be a monthly to bi-weekly affair discussion various Star Frontiers related topics. Episode 1 is out, so drop on over and check it out.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Second Sathar War Computer Game

Just over a year ago I did a post on Star Frontiers related software projects I was involved with. This one is an update. Expect to see more frequent postings on this topic in the future as things progress. This is where I'm spending a lot of my free time at the moment.

The Orbiter project has been shelved indefinitely at this point but the others are still going strong. Art and I have moved on to other areas that are slightly more fertile at the moment.

The KH Vector and Star Frontiers RPG game have been merged into a single project by Art Eaton who is doing that work. You can find details about the two projects over at the site.

My project, the Second Sathar War Game, has been moving along nicely, especially since February when I started my new job out in California. I'm up to release 0.0.10 and it now is a fully playable (although limited) game. You can read the full details under the Release Announcement section of the forums but the strategic game is almost fully implemented and a basic combat system for the tactical game is in place.

Over the next few months I'll be cleaning up the code and fleshing out the combat system. Stay tuned for updates. In the mean time, jump over to the site and download the game and take it for a spin. It runs on both Windows and Linux. I'd have a Mac version but I don't own a Mac to build it on.

New Online Campaigns

So I was looking over the list of on-line campaigns that I had posted previously (over a year ago now) and realized there were a few new ones I should mention. One, which I'm running I announced earlier as well. Since that time there have been a few additional campaigns start up:
  • Second Sathar War Boardgame Campaign - I'm running this one as well. In this game we're playing out the Second Sathar War game from the back of the Knight Hawks Campaign book.
  • Wing Commander - In this campaign players are rookie fighter pilots just completing their initial training and heading off to their first duty assignments. It's run by Shadow Shack.
  • Wing Commander: Dominion - This is a campaign similar to the Wing Command game but here the player's are the bad guys, junior fighter pilot trainees for an evil dictator ship that has take over the Frontier. Also run by Shadow Shack and host on the same site as the Dominion campaign.
  • Black Hand Gang spinoff campaign - This one was just announced today and doesn't even have an official separate name. CaptainH, who runs the Black Hand Gang campaign is spinning off another campaign from the main game and is looking for players. In his own words "I have decided to run another storyline in this same universe that is currently centring around the establishment of a Zoo/Nature Reserve on Volturnus and I am looking for players that might be interested in joining this adventure/campaign.

    This particular PBEM adventure will not be hugely demanding on time for players, probably weekly or even fortnightly turn arounds.

    Whilst there is room for players with Military skills, I am primarily looking for SF gamers who are keen to run Tech and Science based characters. Environmentalists are highly sought after for this scenario.

    Players may create new characters for this adventure or you may adopt one of several 'orphaned' NPC's." The link in the bullet title goes to the sign up page.
Most of the previously listed campaigns are looking for players so if you want to get involved, drop on over to their sites and sign up.

New Job

Normally, I don't intend to post about my personal life here but this does have a bit to do with my involvement with Star Frontiers so it counts.

I work for NASA as a contractor. Back in February, I changed projects moving from the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope mission to the SOFIA project. So now instead of working out of Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland (where I was telecommuting to work from Utah), I'm working out of Ames Research Center near San Jose, California.

My new job requires me to be on-site during the work week and for various reasons my family is still in Utah. So I commute each week, flying out to California on Monday morning and home to Utah Friday evenings.

What does this have to do with Star Frontiers? Well, during the work week, when I'm not home in Utah, I have lots of free time in the evening in my little studio apartment in Sunnyvale. Without the kids to distract, I have lots of time to spend on my favorite hobby, Star Frontiers. Expect to see rapid progress (some of which has already occurred) on my computer game and activity on my online campaigns.

Site Management

Okay, this is going to be the first of a few short posts about things that have been going on (in no particular order) over the last ten months.

One major event is that I've given up hope of acquiring the domain. I've repeatedly attempted to contact the owner of the domain with offers to buy the domain from him but have never gotten a response. Even though his site has no content and hasn't changed since 2000, he continues to renew the domain every April. Maybe the e-mail address listed for him (martin at just goes to a dead inbox, I don't know but he has never responed to a single e-mail I sent him.

I did pick up the domain late last year from Larry Moore a few months after he dropped it. It's almost as good a domain for the Star Frontiers Network as Maybe I'll just change the name of the site to the Star Frontiers Information Network and then it would be a perfect fit!

In any case, effective about a month ago, May 1st, 2009, the Star Frontiers Network moved to a home at Drop on by and visit. Also, if you have links to the the old domain, while it is still active and points to the site as well, I recommend you update your bookmarks and links. I'd like to channel all my pagerank and other search karma at the new domain.

I expect this will be the permanent home for the site. If for some reason, Martin finally responds and I can get the .net domain, the site will move one last time. But I'm not holding my breath.

I'm Not Dead Yet... I'm Getting Better.

10 Months since my last post, I've got to get better. Blogging is just low down on my list of things to do. Anyway, here to writing more often.

It's not like there hasn't been anything going on. There are several things to talk about and they will be coming in some short posts over the next few days. However to give a quick run down:
  • Most, if not all, of the games I mentioned in one of my earlier posts are still going, if not strong and a few new ones have started up.
  • My computer game has been slowly coming along and is in a playable state.
  • My site, The Star Frontiers Network, has moved to a new, permanent domain.
  • I've moved to a new job.
Stay tuned for details.