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Homeworld: Shipbreakers 
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Hey, everyone!
Long time visitor, first time poster here.

Siber wrote:
I don't want to say everything good was Cirulis and Dembo's doing. Without having been there, I can't say how much of what they did was their own ideas and how much was outlines they were given and executed well on.


I happen to know a few more bits about this one. I enjoyed worldbuilding Ms. Dembo did for Sword of the Stars universe, so I read and followed almost every interview and podcast fishing for more info.

IIRC from the words of Martin Cirulis, he said he was hired in later part of the development cycle of HW1 when most of the production was done. Something about bosses looking how things were shaping up and suddenly deciding they needed a writer. He was given the ability to rehash and rescript all of the missions to make the story we now know out of already existing pieces of dialogue. Also he produced a script and insisted upon inclusion of "Return to Kharak" mission. As I understand, he fleshed out the backstory of Kharak, and Karan S'Jet's character is his doing (note: in missions you know her only as Fleet Command). Interesting bit for HW lore fans - by his design, Karan did NOT join her people on Hiigara - part bosses didn't like, process done to her was irreversible and her self-sacrifice needs to be viewed in this light; she was to remain a silent guardian of her people in orbit high above Hiigara. Logic tells that at least part of cinematics were produced the last.
add: oh, and there was no three hyper core bs of course. it originates somewhere from hw2 team

Ms. Dembo involvement in HW1 was a lesser one. She was to write backstories of some kiith and, iirc, to produce a HW1 manual. In HW:C her role was expanded.

As for Cata, after HW release Sierra decided they wanted something like a standalone expansion or a spin-off to sell alongside HW1. Somewhat separate from the main franchise so it would be safe, if I understood it correctly. As I see it, the main reason why Relic is dismissive of Cata is because it was not their decision, not their design and not their doing right from the start.

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Sat Dec 19, 2015 7:42 am
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Part of the Relic team works on Cataclysm. Relic and Barking Dog shared work offices during development. Cataclysm was supposed to be an attached expansion for the base game of Homeworld but at some point in development it became to large (in the eyes of the developers and publishers) to be just a stick on content. So it become a stand alone game.

Cataclysm was supposed to be a separate story line that didn't interfere or contradict the main story of Homeworld, so that later games could follow the "bigger picture" without having to worry about what happened in Cataclysm. Although Barking Dog may have felt they did this to an acceptable level, they left a pretty big foot print with how the bentusi were portrayed and potential side effects of the beast infection. But at the end of the day they didn't step to far into the main story line, which is where Relic wanted to keep their attention. Its why cataclysm isn't referenced in Homeworld 2.

And hello Darq :)

On the subject of names, what would you have gone with Arioch?


Sun Dec 20, 2015 9:37 am
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
elorran wrote:
On the subject of names, what would you have gone with Arioch?

There is a fairly lengthy list of established Hiigaran words; any name that follows the phonetic rules of Hiigaran and is not an obvious, distinctive English name would do fine.

I'm not trying to make this into a bigger deal than it is; it's only a name. But it's not a good sign for a sequel from a new developer when they ignore something so basic to the setting.

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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
It's kind of funny I've been lurking around here since Bellarmine was still in one piece, but only decide to chime in re: Homeworld prequel, but well...

I would argue Rachel is not a bad Homeworld name. What is Homeworld if not basically the Exodus but IN SPACE!?
Kadesh, Kharak, Tanis, Manaan - it's all either taken straight from the Bible, taken from the middle eastern history or phonetically inspired by that.
Rachel seems to be in line with the cultural background Homeworld had drawn from and if you pronounce it more in line with the hebrew pronunciation (something like Rah-el) it doesn't sound as a "distinctive English name" but what it in fact is - a hebrew name (though if they will be pronouncing it the English way I'm going to take all that back).
Also, I think the bulk of what you call "a fairly lengthy list of established Hiigaran words" comes from Cataclysm's ship class names, so it's at best arguable BBI writers for DoK would want to follow that with Cataclysm being somewhat sidelined in terms of canon.

What I'm more concerned about than that is the retconning of the technological level Kharak has. Hovercrafts without skirts, landcarriers, railguns, orbital cannons, regular spaceships (unless that thing's not Kharakian)? That seems considerably more advanced than how Kharakian technology felt to me from the descriptions, before the discovery of Khar Toba. They had technology similar to our present technological level, it's only the Khar Toba that let them leap hundreds of years into the future. And it's all happening pre-Khar Toba. So to me it feels like an iffy retcon.


Wed Dec 23, 2015 6:11 am
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
jaen wrote:
It's kind of funny I've been lurking around here since Bellarmine was still in one piece, but only decide to chime in re: Homeworld prequel, but well...

I would argue Rachel is not a bad Homeworld name. What is Homeworld if not basically the Exodus but IN SPACE!?
Kadesh, Kharak, Tanis, Manaan - it's all either taken straight from the Bible, taken from the middle eastern history or phonetically inspired by that.
Rachel seems to be in line with the cultural background Homeworld had drawn from and if you pronounce it more in line with the hebrew pronunciation (something like Rah-el) it doesn't sound as a "distinctive English name" but what it in fact is - a hebrew name (though if they will be pronouncing it the English way I'm going to take all that back).
Also, I think the bulk of what you call "a fairly lengthy list of established Hiigaran words" comes from Cataclysm's ship class names, so it's at best arguable BBI writers for DoK would want to follow that with Cataclysm being somewhat sidelined in terms of canon.

What I'm more concerned about than that is the retconning of the technological level Kharak has. Hovercrafts without skirts, landcarriers, railguns, orbital cannons, regular spaceships (unless that thing's not Kharakian)? That seems considerably more advanced than how Kharakian technology felt to me from the descriptions, before the discovery of Khar Toba. They had technology similar to our present technological level, it's only the Khar Toba that let them leap hundreds of years into the future. And it's all happening pre-Khar Toba. So to me it feels like an iffy retcon.

I wonder when the Khar-Selim was built? It's described as using conventional drives, so much closer to our tech level. It's journey took 10 years to reach the outer system (ain't that a shaggy-dog story?).

It took 130 years for the Kushan to actually get anything useful out of the Khar-Toba since its discovery. That (finishing research on the hyperspace drive) apparently happened in the year 1135, but I can't find any information about the year Homeworld 1 is actually set in.

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Wed Dec 23, 2015 8:50 am
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Conventional means "fusion" here if I understand correctly. I've just re-read the relevant part of the historical briefing and it seems the first orbital mission happened in 1024 and by 1110s they had fusion reactors in common use. So by the time Mothership was almost ready they must have had pretty good sublight engines.

Homeworld is set in 130X most probably. Mothership construction was approved in 1159, took 120 years and "Excerpts from fleet tactical debate" is dated 7.12.1302.


Wed Dec 23, 2015 11:08 am
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Much as I love the HW1 H&TB, when it gets down to specific numbers it can be pretty contradictory with both itself and the game. But the intention seems to be that HW:DOK is about 100 years before HW1.

Re names: If she was named Ra'hel or something I wouldn't bat an eye at the name. I'd still bat an eye at making the protagonist another prominent S'jet woman, and not even the one already established in the existing material, Sagald. At least Sagald was probably a S'jet, as a scientist with apolitical tenancies, but admittedly could have been something else. Maybe they would have had to have paid rights to use the established character? I know that's a problem TV shows have, but I doubt it'd be one here.

There's a fairly healthy number of Kharakid names in the old H&TB, even ignoring cata. I should really go through and collect them all for phonetics refence...

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Wed Dec 23, 2015 11:17 am
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Siber wrote:
Re names: If she was named Ra'hel or something I wouldn't bat an eye at the name.

But well, Rachel in it's original Hebrew is IIRC pronounced more like [ˈʁaxəl] rather than the English [ˈɹeɪ ʧəl]. So like I said - as long as they pronounce it that way I would be okay with it. If they don't however, that would be just sad. That said I kind of agree they could have changed the spelling to dissociate the name from the English pronunciation, would have been a good move probably.

Siber wrote:
I'd still bat an eye at making the protagonist another prominent S'jet woman, and not even the one already established in the existing material, Sagald.

Yeah, that's an interesting question why they did not use Sagald. Maybe the reason would be that she has a full name - Mevath Sagald. If Kharaki people usually have a clan surname, that would probably mean she was of some minor Sagald clan then and they wanted to have some connection to Karan.

Siber wrote:
There's a fairly healthy number of Kharakid names in the old H&TB, even ignoring cata. I should really go through and collect them all for phonetics refence...

Yay, linguistics. Reminds me of the time when I wanted to make Taiidan language, but then learning a) linguistics is hard if you're 15 year old, b) a lot of the names I thought were Taiidan were from the Cata manual and it seemed quite confused whether they were Taiidan or Kharakian designations.


Wed Dec 23, 2015 12:06 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Ah, I'd missed Sagald's last name in my recent trawling. That's an opportunity for interesting world building in my opinion, a common problem with people writing in established settings is too much reuse of the recognized elements and too little expansion of the world besides. But a commander of a major military operation wouldn't jive too well with her role in the existing material I guess. Then again, neither really does a S'jet in that period in my opinion. Oh well.

The Cata manual ship stories are a sticky problem. They mostly date back to the homeworld unit viewer that was used as sort of a marketing thing for HW1, and let you look at and read about the ships. So they were all written in an era where Taiidan and Kushan were equally valid choices for the exiles, and while the two sets of ship stories in the unit viewer had somewhat different character for the different factions' ships they were both pretty irreconcilably written as the exiles to my eyes. When reprinted for Cata they made some edits that almost make it possible to look at the Taiidan ships as having been given familiar code names by the Kushan, but the stories still don't quite jive with that explanation in many places.

It's a bit of a shame Cata couldn't continue the ambiguity in my opinion. Somtaaw ships are different enough from the Taiidan and Kushan aesthetics that you could probably get away with just swapping the factioning of all the ships around them, but that wouldn't have been free and would have been a slightly odd option to give a player at mission start. I feel the HW2 ship designs are similarly divorced enough to have made it possible to keep it ambiguous just by careful word choice, just avoid using Kushan or Taiidan anywhere and instead use imperial/empire, hiigaran, kharakid, or exile where appropriate.

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Wed Dec 23, 2015 1:08 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Went ahead and did that, sourcing from the 1 and C manual and the unit viewer. It's always fun to roll through the little inconsistencies of the HW1 manual when it comes to spelling anyway. And some cheeseball things in there I tend to forget about too.

Next I need to collect all the ones we've made up for HW@ so far...

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Sat Dec 26, 2015 2:40 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Some of the inconsistencies in spelling (esp. Hiigara/Higaara) go back to the original game itself; they're in the cutscene narration.

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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Yep. And depending on the passage, Gaalsien and Siidim might be the names of kiith, or the form referring to the people of kiith Gaalsi and Siid(collective form?). What I hadn't noticed before is how many different ways the term for the people of Kharak was rendered, by the end I was disappointing I didn't find more to collect.

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Sat Dec 26, 2015 6:07 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Well, on the one hand the Cataclysm manual says:
Quote:
Note: All Taiidani vessels carry the codename given them by Hiigaran Fleet Intelligence.

But on the other hand in the descriptions themselves you get:
Quote:
Koshiir Ra was an ancient god of protection in the ancient days of the Taidani people (...)
The ship is named for Tiirshak Sjet, the famous Taiidani scholar (...)
The Kudaark is named after a large burrower from the northern forests of Taiidan.

Which makes those Cataclysm names somewhat dubious to base on, since it's pretty obvious Barking Dog wasn't really all that consistent and was just throwing random double-voweled names around.


Thu Dec 31, 2015 2:34 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Other ship stories from the ship viewer(predating cata) refer to Kharak and to a Taiidani as a member of S'jet(edit: doh, you quoted that one). To me it seems clear both Kushan and Taiidan ship fluff stories were initially written as possible players, but they tried to retcon that for the cata manual and missed a few spots. It's perhaps not the only valid interpretation, but it's the one I prefer to run with.

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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
New trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7ior9JoUE0

I'm seeing what others are saying about the ambient tech level and other complaints. From a lore perspective, I'm starting to get anxious about Deserts of Kharak.

Reddit thread: https://www.reddit.com/r/homeworld/comm ... ry_anomaly

Lots of posting from BBI personnel. Some interesting reads.

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Fri Jan 08, 2016 11:56 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Heh, it's fun to see Uberjumper (a.k.a. "InactiveJumper") is carrying the flag.

It's hard to make an unplanned prequel without a hefty amount of retconning, and so far it looks like they're slamming into it face-first.

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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
so they are still updating it? i tought that project was dead


Sat Jan 09, 2016 12:32 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
Arioch wrote:
Heh, it's fun to see Uberjumper (a.k.a. "InactiveJumper") is carrying the flag.

It's hard to make an unplanned prequel without a hefty amount of retconning, and so far it looks like they're slamming into it face-first.


I read the Reddit file, am I missing something obvious about any retcons. I checked the home world timeline and the references do make sense. Now, I don't know if their getting into a star wars prequel "bad story telling" scale. The small conflicts quote from the manuals would open the door to deserts of Khatak campaigne.

The HW1 manual history is sorta like a general history of the western world, with many of the details of the wars and space race left to the more significant moments (but for the home world area). Given this overall view of history I could see the road the discovery of khar toba would have had some conflicts, especially with the more religious kiths and desert wonders ( as hinted in the trailers). As for the tech level and vehicles, other than the HW cinematic, it not very well defined, but given the tech of the DoK timeline very possible ( as for the space weapon, maybe a very long ranger rail gun, designed to fire across continents).

On another notes, does anyone think DoK reminds them of relics Ground War games?

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Sat Jan 09, 2016 2:48 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
@NOMAD: The original printing of the HW1 backstory specifically said it had been 250 years since the last major conflict on Kharak, and the version printed by gearbox for the HWRC collector's edition changed this and some other passages as well.

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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
I don't know what the events of the new game are yet, but there appears to be some major conflict over the investigation of the Khar-toba that seems to involve spaceships (unless that element is a flashback). The minor problem is that there is no mention of such a conflict in the intro to Homeworld; rather, the discovery of the Guidestone is stated to have been a unifying event. This seems to be a thematic retcon if not necessarily a technical one. It's in a similar class to the appearance of the Emperor in Empire Strikes Back as a force user with Vader as second in command; sure, no one technically said this wasn't the case, but in the first movie it was strongly implied that the Emperor was not a force user (one of the Imperial officers openly mocks force use), and Vader was subordinate to a mere governor.

The bit about "our planet is dying" also rubs me the wrong way, since Kharak was (as far we know) always a barely-habitable desert wasteland from the moment that the exiles arrived.

I'll reserve judgment, but as I said, it's hard to do an unplanned prequel that has compelling action and story without taking significant liberties with the source material.

Karst45 wrote:
so they are still updating it? i tought that project was dead

The game is supposed to be released later this month.

It is nice that the pre-order in addition to being $10 off included the HW Remastered Edition for free.

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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
I think they meant the "Our World is Dying" thing more as to say that Kharak is nearing the end of its geological lifespan / the star it orbits is beginning its slow march to becoming a red giant. Whether or not it's in the last 100 or last 100,000 years, the planet is still "dying", though they leave it ambiguous as to how fast.

And though the discovery of the guide stone was said to be unifying, I'm going to guess the guide stone is discovered at the end of the final mission.

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Sat Jan 09, 2016 3:41 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
@siber. Oh ok I see that now, re the time and the history. I agree that the time line was always a little muddled although HW Cat had a final time that was iffy.

@Arioch, oh a see ur points, and I think I'll wait for the game too and see what happens.

@roeban. The world dying is more like its present, although the arioch does have a point. Kharak was always barely habitable. Even the hw1 manual said during the construction of the mothership, the effort stripped the fewer resources of planet away.

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Sat Jan 09, 2016 11:34 pm
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
The death of a star is not usually something that happens on a timescale that is relevant to human civilizations.

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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
It doesn't make it less true however. If we knew that the sun was going to destroy all life on earth in 100,000 years instead of 2 billion years, we'd probably look at interstellar colonization a little differently, even if it made no real difference. Keep in mind that the sun will sterilize all multicellular life 500 million years from now, and this process is likely already in a very advanced stage when the story picks up on Kharak.

I'd imagine there would be some sort of societal pressure on religion and society that isn't really influenced by the timeframes irrelevance to it's society, making the statement in the trailer accurate to the setting in my opinion.

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Sun Jan 10, 2016 10:16 am
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Post Re: Homeworld: Shipbreakers
All stars are dying. It's not a meaningful thing to say.

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