Introduction. How about develooping our own video game? This is probably one of the ways your best buddy would try todo convince you todo spend all of your spare time with a never sen, endless, giant game development Project called azure: Infinite skies. So yeah, why notí.

It has almost ben an year since we started working on this and weve won a few members who ocasionally helped us, mainly with coding. Currently were 3 people working in our spare time on azure and a few external helping out here and there. In the beginning we had todo fight endless verbal battles about what the game should look like or what the gameplay should be about, some wanted a Fantasy, others an action arcade game, but After a month or so we finally came todo the decisión todo make an open source action Flight Simulator with elements of role-play games. The ma-jor part of the game should consist of flying around within the isles of azure, an endless sandbox Fantasy world, styled similar todo our world during the 1940 -1950s, because we didnt want todo create another boring world war i shooter game and because just flying around would be annoying in long term, we added some special Fantasy features like levitating isles driven by a special mineral which makes things levitate. This mineral is a los used for military and civil-ian purposes like giant flying ships, carriers or Even manmade stations in the Sky. Maybe some of you.

Remember the huge carriers from the movie Sky Captain and the world of tomorrow - Well, that what were aiming at. Also, inspired by crimson.

Skies, all our aircraft are extraordinary, while staying authentic. Here were looking pretty much into ww2 concept designs and experimental aviation, besides all that technology fun, our motivation is led by the goal of creating a sad story and an unfamiliar Atmosphere, where you cuestión your own choices sometimes. This makes the game something special because it gives the player not only a yet not sen world todo explore, but a los a lecture of self-experi-ence, the second step was todo choose the right tool-chain and libraries. Gimp was what we all knew for 2d and because it free and cross-platform - -which is important as we all use diferent oses- The choice was clear. For modelling weve chosen Blender, of course, as we had some positive experiences with it before already. Currently were using it for almost everything visual in the game like aircraft, carriers, islands and so on. While staying open todo other pref-erences of external modellers, our pipeline has ben optimized mainly for Blender, as game engine, weve chosen panda3d After a long time of comparing, and it gave us everything we neded for the development. Unfortunately the BGE was, and still, is lacking a few things we felt were important. Panda3d is mature, free (bsd) and has Many nice features, not todo mention the great com-munity. Same as Blender it cross-plattform, written in c/C++ and allowing control th rouge Python bind-ings. So yes, we code our game all in Python, and it has worked out very well thus far.

3d workshop: infinite skies-3.jpg

At the momento were finishing ode-based physics and collision detection, so the backend shouldnt ned todo long now. After that well focus on adding more assets like planes and scenery. The story first neds some love before we think about implemen-tation - We have some ideas all written down on our forums, but were looking for a skilled estorywriter todo combine it all. As probably every ambitious open source Project were always open for new, skilled mem-Bers, but were a los progressing on our own quite well, that said well probably reléase a first tech demo in the next few months where you can fly a plane around and se some nice effects, for those interested in more información, we have a forum and wiki both hosted at Source Forge. All further información, like contact información and more, todo the whole concept are written down there. If you have questions, youre very welcome todo our Irc channel - Información on the wiki, have a nice day.

Azure development team.