Better Times

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    For your (and my!) entertainment, anachronism and humor are at the core of this texture pack which implies a tale of a civilization built from the leftovers of
    Better Times

    The texture pack is now available! Download from the content page here.

    This started as a modification of the since discontinued Realistic texture pack. It now blends elements from Realistic, Default, and outside inspiration.



    The textures and style elements are primarily based on the Realistic pack (which is now removed from the game). A number of blocks are modernized a bit with graphics or inspiration from Default, for example the Cannon Computer:
    New block types are generally imported from Default and updated to match the original style of Realistic:
    Other block textures have newly created graphics (with encompassing style elements from Realistic) and elements from photographic sources. See the content download page (linked above) for additional current sample pictures. There are also a few gems not shown in the sample screenshots, left as surprises for your enjoyment. ;)


    I thought I might share some screenshots of something I started working on a few weeks ago to wait for various changes to settle down. This started as just a way to explore a few amusing ideas, but has turned into an implied tale of a civilization built from the leftovers of
    Better Times

    It's a rather anachronistic theme with some corresponding humor injected. Won't be everyone's thing I'm sure, but it entertains me.:)

    Hull:


    Power, shields, and thrusters:


    Initial shot of some damage overlays:


    I have more done than this, but still need to work on some key items like the front face of the thruster and refinement of some of the normal maps. Haven't entirely decided what blocks to add other than the ones I've done; what I haven't is filled in with the Realistic pack. I've also used some of its box frames and panel parts to make my additions fit in with that theme.
     
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    Ha nice! This is really neat, gives a cool feel. Hardened hull seems to shinny and new however but keep up the great work!
     
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    Hardened hull seems to shinny and new
    Interesting observation and something for me to think about. I'm not necessarily intending for everything to look used or worn, more just old/adapted tech. I've certainly gone on and off the used look while working on this though. My original working title was "Scrounge", but it started to not fit so well with what I was doing.

    Ultimately the peeling paint on the normal hull was something I just couldn't resist. ;) The hardened hull does have a more worn look when the normal map isn't activated, which is mostly a side effect of dulling the highlights in the original photographic image. This is visible in the left side of the power/shield screenshot. (I'd missed linking that image originally but have since added it.) Maybe I'll try adding some texture/noise to the normal map. I'm not a graphic artist, so it's been a chance to refresh or update my knowledge of GIMP and learn some new tricks.
     
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    Ah yea the hard hull in the new picture deffinetly fits in better. Cant wait for this to be released.
     

    NeonSturm

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    I especially like the steel-look, cracked damage overlay and yellow arrow thing (they are the shields not the thrusters?)
    I dislike that the scratches are vertical (would like them more horizontal in flight direction).

    Personally I miss the lack of wood, carpet and tapestry, posters of peoples like something important from your home planet... (something personal)

    Do you have ideas for logic blocks? I would like them being fused with decorative computers or terminals.
     
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    I added some texture to the normal map for the diamondplate based on the visible texture. The effect seems to be decent, gives it a slight stressed/pitted look rather than a mirror-smooth glare. I went pretty light with it, so I think the difference is a bit too subtle to notice in a compressed screenshot.

    Turning the normal hull "wear" horizontally makes sense for ships, but not so much for a building. It's too bad that we can't rotate single-texture blocks to change the orientation, maybe should be a game suggestion/request?

    The yellow-design blocks are shields, yes (kept with yellow to help identify that). Sort of inspired by Asteroids or some derivative ;). The capacity blocks (shown) animate outward, while the regen blocks are the same design but animate clockwise.

    Regarding logic blocks, you've planted an idea... I hadn't thought of having them double as decorations. Maybe not exactly what you had in mind but amusing...

    Thanks for the feedback!
     
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    I really like this, it give a 'used future' feel, that contrasts the way too shiny (In my opinion) look of the current game.

    My only criticism is that the scratches are too vertical (like what Neon said). Another one I have is that the scratches are too unevenly spread out, they veer too dense to the right of the block.

    If you're going for a dirty space-wastelander feel can I suggest some dirt and grime for the lights and screens? Not so much that it looks like janitors no longer exist, just enough to add some atmosphere to the pack.
     

    Mariux

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    Nice. Maybe make the hardened hull texture a little less contrasting?
     
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    Been a while since I posted any update. I did get the docking blocks done; the enhancers animate as you'd expect from the picture, and the two types are designed to mix together for decorative use.

    Also with the introduction of a third hull type, I switched the corrugated metal texture shown above to "normal hull" and created a new riveted texture for "standard armor".

    I've been working on logic blocks (not shown yet), still have some finishing touches to apply. Then will likely take some time to do a few things to improve style consistency across existing blocks, since I started from the Realistic pack and have been importing textures of new blocks from Default as they are added.

     

    kupu

    Colouring in guy.
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    Good to see this revived! I'm liking those new hull blocks.
     
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    Logic is done:


    I've gone with the new default damage overlays, with increased intensity (brightness + contrast) to make them more visible on my hull textures. The cracked glass images I used before weren't really visible enough, and did not lend themselves well to creating a tileable, progressive set of textures. Attempts to create my own so far haven't produced the results I wanted. And Kupu's new ones happen to look great and fit well with this theme too!

    I think I'll have something to upload soon.
     

    NeonSturm

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    I like the blocks in your last two images.
    Especially logic (now we just need 8-bit logic as you have 8 connections between blocks =D)​

    With the gears - it looks awesome, but it is not very distinguishable in large stacks containing the block with the yellow gear (like you already use in corners)
    Will you use copper or silver?
    You can even have black gears made of carbon​
     
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    Thanks! The sun glare in the picture may have made some of the colors less apparent. The primary gears are copper for the turret enhancer and silver for the docking enhancer (matching the actual docking modules), while the secondary is brass in both cases for decorative combining. I really would have liked to do something more intricate with the design; maybe I will revisit these blocks for enhancement at a later point.
     

    Drybreeze

    Simply complicated.
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    I really like your thinking with these textures. The logic in particular is extremely well done.
     
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    Well, I took some time to create one more block face that I really wanted to do before the release. It was totally worth it. :) You'll probably know it when you see it.

    Also the recent game performance release introduced use of lower-resolution textures for rendering blocks at varying distances, where previously it appeared that only the selected resolution textures were used. I was not originally planning (at least initially) to provide texture resolutions other than 256, but to support this optimization I've also scaled down the textures to include 128 and 64 versions.

    Better Times is now downloadable in the Community Content section! See the first post of this thread for a link, and enjoy.
     
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    I really like this pack, however, just a 'nit-pick' from me, I feel the peeling paint is too much. I mean, with something like Minecraft's Optifine or MCPatcher (Something that allows multiple textures) it would look cool to have them randomly about. I know this is out of your control, just my thoughts though :P