G33X Nexus Entertainment > General Announcements

Precursors v0.8.0 Released (Yes, really)


New Release

That's right! After 12 years, untold iterations (5-7 depending on who's counting), there's a new, official release of Precursors, v0.8.0. This is an all new engine, and all new code, but old everything else.

I'll get into the "why?" in a moment, but first let's talk about what's in this release:

Precursors v0.8.0

* Windows, Linux, macOS, and web
* Mouse-look style flight controls
* Real physics based movement
* New Engine: Unity
* "Nostalgic" asteroids scene
* "New" skybox (still about ten years old at this point)
* Entirely new codebase
* Feature parity with v0.3.4 build 967
There is no multiplayer in this build. While it wouldn't be hard to add at this point, I just didn't get it done this weekend. But there wasn't multiplayer in the v0.3.4 build either, so...

No, seriously, what?

Alright, so I'll come clean. As everyone knows, Precursors has been dead for a while. Officially about two years now... it's been a fun ride, but it doesn't look like our MMORPG dreams will ever see the light of day. The core team's even split, with whitelynx in Boston... it'll never be what it was. That's sad, and I'm not exactly thrilled to let over a decade of work just live in tarballs on dusty old backup drives.

Since we started, the indie game scene has taking off wildly. Things like Unity didn't exist for most of it, and even once it became a thing, we dismissed it out of hand, because it was weak, didn't perform great, and who wants to code in .Net anyway? Well, since then Unity has evolved, and we got stuck in the mud. Looking back it's clear that we probably didn't make the right calls, but it was impossible to know at the time.

This last Easter weekend, I set out to teach myself some Unity. What better to start with than something I knew? So I dug through some backups, and found the original C++ codebase; the same codebase that we last announced a release from. "Alright, screw it, how about I just remake that?" After about 8 hours, I'd done it, except for a UI. So I found our old SVG sprite sheet, taught myself some more Unity, and built a working UI. No, it's not a visual match for the old one, but it's using the same sprites, and that was close enough.

Frankly, this project turned into an homage for the last decade of friends, fun, and code. I don't plan on doing more with this (except maybe networking), but I thought all of you might get a kick out of it. So here it is, in all it's glory.


* Windows
* Linux
* macOS
Don't feel like downloading it? Well, have a webGL version. (The UI scales weird, but it's still usable.)


Want to see the code? I've put it up here:


And, please, enjoy!

So, I was thinking about doing the same thing I did here, and re-creating Precursors in Godot, which while not as powerful as Unity, much more fits the philosophy we always used with Precursors. (If I ever went for a full-scale push to make the project live again, Godot would probably be my engine of choice, all else being equal. Unity, while an amazing engine, is hamstrung IMHO my C# and it's proprietary nature.)

I dunno, but watch this space for (maybe) an 0.9.0 version in the future.

OTOH,  :effort:


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