Samurai Wars is an online real-time tactical war-game featuring a reality-based simulation model. Up to now the focus has been on researching the various components needed for such a game, such as:
- a simulation model and algorithm capable of representing the states and actions of thousands of fighting individuals
- a distributed simulation framework that synchronizes this model between dozens of computers from all over the world
- a network algorithm that handles high latency and crappy connections in a robust way
- a rendering component that can visualize these battles on screen in 3D
- an intuitive user interface for commanding armies and getting feedback of the battle
- a lobby front end where players can meet up and start games
- a lobby back end server that coordinates all of this
- an architecture that is open and allows for maximum freedom to contribute and customize the game play
It’s been a lot of work, I’ve explored a lot of technologies, both useful ones and some dead ends. But the project is now in a stage were all the pieces of the puzzle have been discovered and it’s time to start putting them together.
Development and release process
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This is a list of features needed for the game to be considered ”feature complete”. It’s listed in rough priority order, but there are no hard dates or deadlines. Features are implemented one at a time, and the list will be updated and re-prioritized between each task.
Map editor and custom maps
First step to customization is to be able to create and host your own maps. Initially with the current set of terrain features: hills, woods, and water, but later also structures like buildings, bridges, castles, and forts.
Lobby and chat improvements
Improve the main screen and lobby, add setup panel so you can host custom games. Add in-game team chat.
Battle view, gestures and commands
Need to fix glitches with camera control and unit movement / facing. And add more advanced unit commands for controlling groups of units, changing formation and unit orders like hold-fire, fire-at-will, hold-ground, etc.
Players will be able to select the units they bring to the battle field. Moreover, the host will be able to customize the cost of those units, as to balance the battle in his/her choice of preference.
Improve and fine-tune the calculations for movement and melee combat. Add support for artillery units. Improve how morale works and add fatigue. Add realistic line-of-sight and fog-of-war so that you can conceal units in woods or behind hills.
Graphics and animations
Graphics has admittedly been neglected while focusing on other parts of the game. Needs to be improved and expanded, recreating the style of classical Japanese woodblock prints.
Add different victory conditions and scoring mechanisms other than last-man-standing, like capture-the-flag, king-of-the-hill, free-for-all, etc. Also add historical and fictional scenarios of different types (meeting engagements, ambushes, sieges, etc). And improved battle AI for solo play scenarios.
Add ability to play battles where the outcome matters in the context of a larger scope, such as ladders and competitions like tournaments and leagues, as well as the more traditional strategic campaign mode of play.
Extend the platform to new periods, to ancient, medieval, napoleonic times, etc.