Achron will be up for Preorder later today

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Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Tychomonger » Fri Jan 01, 2010 2:34 am

http://achrongame.com/index.html

Achron, a Meta-Time Strategy game, or time travel RTS, should be up for early preorder later today, and you'll be able to try out an alpha of the single player demo if you do, as well as get a cheaper price. As they are releasing it as an independent game studio, they can really use the preorder money!

Words cannot describe how excited I am about this game, so I'll just post some a couple example videos.

Time traveling gameplay:

Paused time for better precision of commands:

Paradox:


"The red line shows when my opponent is."
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Aealacreatrananda wrote:When I envision a far far future.... I don't fuck around.

People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint, it's more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey... stuff.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Alfador » Fri Jan 01, 2010 11:25 am

It's Braid Meets Starcraft!
Arf! *wagwagwag*
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Coda » Sat Jan 02, 2010 4:00 pm

Holy crap, I never expected them to actually finish it. XD I expected the game to get too caught up in the details like Spore did and get delayed again and again.

I may just have to get this if they have a Mac version.

Edit: XD XD XD XD XD
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Tychomonger » Sat Jan 02, 2010 8:28 pm

They plan to have Linux support by March and Mac support by May.

http://achrongame.com/release_calendar.html
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Aealacreatrananda wrote:When I envision a far far future.... I don't fuck around.

People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint, it's more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey... stuff.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby strange_person » Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:24 am

Coda wrote:Holy crap, I never expected them to actually finish it. XD I expected the game to get too caught up in the details like Spore did and get delayed again and again.

Of course not! If there were unexpected delays, they'd just rewind and re-organize.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Jennifer Diane Reitz » Mon Mar 15, 2010 3:52 pm

I found how they dealt with the grandfather paradox to be particularly interesting.

Because of the time wave concept, the preservation or destruction of events can be finessed - they didn't just cap things with a simple preservation of causality. This is pretty cool as a concept; the metatiming of a paradox determines which causal events survive the resolution. Fascinating.

Of course, it implies that there is a meta-time for which time is a subset - that time takes metatime to occur within. Which, really, is kind of cool. An extra, additional dimension of time seems to solve the grandfather paradox handily.

Then again, this is the case in all the cool time travel stories, really. The time traveler is almost never themselves affected by their manipulations of time; they and their machine are almost always considered to be 'outside of time' in some kind of 'temporal grace'. Killing your grandfather just means you return to a future where no one knows you, you alone are aware of the alternate past. A rare exception is the time travel of Back To The Future, but even then the effects of paradox resolution rippled through time slowly... rather like a wave, come to think of it.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Coda » Mon Mar 15, 2010 8:05 pm

Jennifer Diane Reitz wrote:Then again, this is the case in all the cool time travel stories, really. The time traveler is almost never themselves affected by their manipulations of time; they and their machine are almost always considered to be 'outside of time' in some kind of 'temporal grace'. Killing your grandfather just means you return to a future where no one knows you, you alone are aware of the alternate past. A rare exception is the time travel of Back To The Future, but even then the effects of paradox resolution rippled through time slowly... rather like a wave, come to think of it.

Back to the Future contradicted itself in that regard. Its explanation for "temporal grace" was that the timeline forked, and you end up traveling on the fork you didn't originate on -- your own history is, essentially, intact; it's just not the history of the world you're actually observing. But then they had the "fading" thing happen, which was great for movie magic but really didn't make much sense in light of the "alternate timeline" explanation.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Jennifer Diane Reitz » Tue Mar 16, 2010 12:28 am

Coda wrote:Back to the Future contradicted itself in that regard. Its explanation for "temporal grace" was that the timeline forked, and you end up traveling on the fork you didn't originate on -- your own history is, essentially, intact; it's just not the history of the world you're actually observing. But then they had the "fading" thing happen, which was great for movie magic but really didn't make much sense in light of the "alternate timeline" explanation.


Yeah... yes! I never caught that. I think it just shined on past me. Good insight, and catch, Coda.

Hmmm... is there a way out of this? I can't think of anything different in terms of how they traveled to get to that alternate universe timeline. There wasn't some new button pressed. This is a tough one to do a No-Prize for. There is no difference I can find between the way Marty changed the past and the way Tannen changed it... so the fading thing just doesn't make sense - it's an entirely different time mechanic.

SO, Can I Do It?

The fading hand can only 'work' if the Delorean is only able to travel within one, single, solitary timeline. Even then, there is no explanation for the slow effect of the temporal changes occurring - they should be instant. And unnoticed - memory too, would be changed. Here's a No-Prize answer... Flux Capacitors spew temporal radiation which poisons matter around it; such chronoradioactive matter is forced partially outside time, and thus changes in causality must overcome that radiation pressure to finally affect said matter - thus the slow-fading hand. There.

But the Tannen problem... hmmm...

How about this!

Chronoradiation is cumulative. It builds up in matter, forcing that matter further and further out of sync with its original timestream. The effect is such that only one, perhaps two trips can ever be taken in linear time before the time machine, and travelers, are inevitably forced out of their original worldline by chronoradiative pressure.

The reason, then, that Biff Tannen seemed to create an alternate version of history, a parallel reality, is because... he didn't. Biff just altered the original BTTF timeline, the end. But for Marty and Doc Brown, already heavily dosed with chronons, it was the last straw. It would have happened with or without Tannen's actions; they were already doomed to be excluded, forever, from their original timeline, pushed out by their own chronoradioactivity. They never return, not to the world we first saw in the original BTTF movie - to the people there, Doc and Marty just vanished one day. There were hints of Libyans and dark dealings at the mall. No trace ever found.

I can prove it too!

The first hint that Marty and Doc are being pushed outside normal time into alternate timelines occurs at the very beginning of Back To The Future 2. There is a different Jennifer. It isn't that they couldn't get the same actress - oh no - rather it is the incredibly clever effort of Robert Zemeckis to prove the theory I have just presented to you. That different Jennifer is an alternate universe Jennifer from the start of the movie; they slid out of their timeline in the blink of an eye, like a watermelon seed popped from between two squeezing fingers. The moment? It happens during the exact instant that Doc is putting garbage in the Mr. Fusion machine. Then. In that instant. Tannen had nothing to do with it; in that moment Doc and Marty lost their true universe, and became refugees among an infinite number of alternate timestreams.

And I can prove it further! Robert Zemeckis made this effort to prove what I am saying now, today, at 12:45 AM, 3/16/2010 in the past, all the way back in 1988, during the filming of BTTF 2. Time travel is clearly involved here, thus proving my genius explanation!

Ooh! I'm dizzy with my own brilliance. A No-Prize is me!

I have an answer for everything; the only problem is that I am probably wrong - a minor detail, I assure you.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Zilla » Tue Mar 16, 2010 5:51 pm

I like the way Red vs Blue handled time travel, but it only works if you're planning a story, not an interactive thing like a game...

In there, all the things that Church did when he went back in time to try to fix things ended up causing everything he was trying to fix. There was even an information paradox, where he inadvertently renamed the tank as Sheila, because he remembered her as saying her name was Sheila, even though it was originally Phyllis, and the only reason she told him that her name was Sheila was because he had told her her name was Sheila because she told him her name was Sheila etc.

So where did the name Sheila come from???
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Alfador » Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:43 pm

Zilla wrote:I like the way Red vs Blue handled time travel, but it only works if you're planning a story, not an interactive thing like a game...

In there, all the things that Church did when he went back in time to try to fix things ended up causing everything he was trying to fix. There was even an information paradox, where he inadvertently renamed the tank as Sheila, because he remembered her as saying her name was Sheila, even though it was originally Phyllis, and the only reason she told him that her name was Sheila was because he had told her her name was Sheila because she told him her name was Sheila etc.

So where did the name Sheila come from???


Information paradoxes can come from unstable loops.

A true paradox is a 0-1 loop, where a time-travel-dependent event directly causes itself to not happen, which in turn directly causes the event to happen again. The simplest non-paradoxical solution to this is that some bizarrely improbable event will cause the time travel device to fail before the paradox can occur.

A 1-1 loop is where an event directly causes itself to happen. In my idea of time travel, 1-1 loops are easy to have happen in all cases where it is POSSIBLE for the loop to get started as a 0-1 event. Consider this possibility:

Church goes back and time, remembering the tank's name as Phyllis. He gets conversational with her in the past, and offhandedly remarks that it's odd for tanks to have names, and why isn't she named, oh I don't know, Sheila or something? And then this becomes an unstable loop, because the tank's name is now different from that which caused Church to have the conversation in which he thought up the name. Now, at first glance this might seem like a truly paradoxical 0-1 loop, but in fact there's a perfectly reasonable way for Church to still rename the tank Sheila in the past--now, he remembers the tank's name as Sheila and expresses surprise that, in the past, it isn't. And this expression of surprise causes the exact same outcome, thereby stabilizing the 1-1 loop.

This is why no scientist has yet had a time-traveling version of him/herself from the future come back to hand over plans for a time machine. First you have to be able to invent it once, THEN the loop can stabilize into a seeming information paradox.

In other words, though the source of a piece of information may no longer have ever existed, it must be POSSIBLE for that source to come into existence in order for the information to close the loop.

About the only way a true 0-1 loop could cause a time machine to roll a critical failure would probably be to set up an automatic system that, without fail, outputs the opposite of its input, and feed it back. This could be accomplished with a circuit containing an inverter and a time machine that sends the signal back exactly the same amount of time as the delay in the rest of the circuit. Of course, this could still form a stable, non-paradox loop through simple miscalibration--perhaps the current generates just enough heat to fluctuate the delay in the non-time-traveling part of the circuit, meaning there is a finite, nonzero delay, turning the circuit into a simple oscillator.

I think. Take it with a grain of salt the size of a gas giant.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Wizard CaT » Thu Mar 18, 2010 9:14 pm

Back to the Future did get a bit bad time-wise in the second movie. In the first everything fit. Marty ruined his own future and a time wave was sweeping through reality.

In the second, Old Biff went back to time to give Young Biff a book from the future. This, by itself, works in the rules, however the book being from a future that no longer existed should fade out like Marty did. Regardless, Old Biff made a change, no different than Marty did. He never should have been able to go back to the future. Just like Doc told Marty when they discovered the alternate present, they can't go back to the future to stop Old Biff, the timeline is shifted. They need to go to the point in the past to stop Old Biff. For -some reason- they also need to make Old Biff think he succeeded. That is really confusing as if they stopped Old Biff, they could take the car back themselves too for themselves to find.

Of course, Doc may have just been WRONG in one of his explanations. Maybe Marty was only fading due to the double dose of time shifts in the past (his parents & Biff's book). They both were fixed around the same time after all.

Ah well, still great movies. And we all know Bill & Ted has the best time travel. "Hey Ted, remember this for later: garbage can!"
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Anna » Fri Mar 19, 2010 4:58 am

Wizard CaT wrote:...
Ah well, still great movies. And we all know Bill & Ted has the best time travel. "Hey Ted, remember this for later: garbage can!"

Hm, if all the adventures are behind you. all the mysteries are solved, why should Bill & Ted go back and throw the garbage can out of their time machine? What would happen if they ignore it all. Or just by a simple "Oh, I forgot that!".

I'm really a fan of the idea having alternate universes.
You can't break the rule that a reaction follows the action.
You are immediatly from an other universe because even your existence changes the timeline a little bit, and if you kill some people inclusive some family members, nothing will happen to you if you go back to your own timeline.
Just IF(!) you can get back to your own timeline, you will need a time machine to navigate into different timelines / alternate universes.
And I think even Doc Who's Tardis can't do that, well not really, (It happened once with Doc 10 by an accident).
It's like drive the street back and then use the turn-off into the other street to your way home.
Doc Brown's Delorian couldn't do that also. What a pitty, it's a car, but only capable to drive one-dimensional in time.
Jennifer wrote:The moment? It happens during the exact instant that Doc is putting garbage in the Mr. Fusion machine. Then. In that instant. Tannen had nothing to do with it; in that moment Doc and Marty lost their true universe, and became refugees among an infinite number of alternate timestreams

Jawohl!
But I believe it was much much more earlier, just as Marty arrived in the past.
However...
Prof. Jennifer, may I join your next seminar about time travel?
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Plasman » Sun Mar 21, 2010 6:11 am

The Back To The Future series is enough to make anyone's head hurt if they try to decode it.
I'm still trying to work out how it was "okay" to leave Jennifer on the balcony in the alternate timeline. I think by that stage the scriptwriters were trying to work out what to do with the character (since they clearly weren't interested in taking her back to 1885) so they just left her sleeping on the swing and hashed out a throwaway cover story for her outcome. Meh, I guess by the end of the third movie, you're so caught up in the action it doesn't really matter in the end! :dizzy:
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Zilla » Sun Mar 21, 2010 8:52 pm

I think this game follows a bit like Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency version of time-travel. Little paradoxes pop up but get resolved, and largely, the timeline tries to fix itself and keep things in some semblance of order.
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Postby mwchase » Sun Jan 16, 2011 10:47 pm

A couple days ago, I remembered that this game existed, and, since my laptop was more likely to meet the requirements following its post-NaNo Everything Upgrade, I sprang for it, because I didn't do enough of that with Steam's Christmas sales. :frown:

Anyway, I've got the alpha, just in time for classes to start! :?

My ranting about my decisions aside, how's this game been treating people? I'll probably have to wait a few days before I can try getting any further in the tutorial, but oh well. How's it been for everyone else?
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby Coda » Mon Jan 17, 2011 8:40 am

In an incredibly indirect fashion, I'm developing for Achron. XD The composer uses the software I develop to write the music for the game.
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Re: Achron will be up for Preorder later today

Postby SvZurich » Wed Aug 31, 2011 4:43 am

If you preordered this as I did, you can add it to Steam easily. Log into the main site where you would to download builds and your Steam key is at the top. Very cool of the dev team! :)

Kimmie, currently playing SPaZ, DE:HR, and Bastion as well.
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