Nebula Zen

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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Scytale » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:12 am

Talvieno wrote:That works too. :) Just so long as they're all pretty to look at.


well for me,

with a small percentage being much more dusty, and a large percentage having little to no nebulae whatsoever.


I think nebula-less space is beautiful in itself, so from my perspective this is in line with Hyperion's suggestion
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Talvieno » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:15 am

And to me, that feels bland. I wouldn't mind some areas being like that, but I certainly wouldn't enjoy 95% of them being that way. :D
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Scytale » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:16 am

Talvieno wrote:And to me, that feels bland. I wouldn't mind some areas being like that, but I certainly wouldn't enjoy 95% of them being that way. :D


Large percentage could mean 60%, and Hyperion did say it could be adjusted for balance =P
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Talvieno » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:19 am

Ah well. I suppose it just comes down to interpretation and preference then.
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Dinosawer » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:29 am

Scytale wrote:
TLDR: beauty is absolute, wealth is relative


I struggle to see how you can say this. Having zero money or resources is a pretty absolute statement. Having "no beauty" is a matter of taste.

Zero money is literally the only absolute one when it comes to money. :P
If a thing brings me a lot of money, then "a lot" is relative to my wealth and how much I make in other ways. Which means if every thing would give "a lot" of money, it would no longer be "a lot".
If trade run A gives me 500 credits and all the other ones 5, then A is a good run. If all trade runs give 500 credits that doesn't make them all good - it just makes credits worth less.
The number itself is the same, yes, but the number doesn't mean anything without economical context.

On the other hand, if I say a system is pretty, then it doesn't need another one to compare it to. It's just pretty. Having 2 pretty systems doesn't make each only half as pretty.
(if it did, we wouldn't still be salivating at each LT screenie :ghost: )
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Scytale » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:34 am

Dinosawer wrote:
On the other hand, if I say a system is pretty, then it doesn't need another one to compare it to. It's just pretty. Having 2 pretty systems doesn't make each only half as pretty.
(if it did, we wouldn't still be salivating at each LT screenie :ghost: )


You're right, but the comparison is nonuniform in number: if you have a thousand pretty screenies, they tend to become indistinguishable from one another if they're all "equally" stunning
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Damocles » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:36 am

I would see it more of how to "emphasize" a system.

Throwing all effects in randomly at once will make it also feel random.

For example: systems get generated with the emphasis on 1,2 or 3 "eye candy" environments, and the rest being tuned down, using default parameters or not being generated.
Then the algorithm can pick from the list witch to emphasize:

-nebulas (inside)
-nebulas in the distance
-galaxyband / milkyway
-starless black sky with a close-by galaxy in the background
-dense stars
-asteroid ring
-double star
-very bright distant star
-black hole
-close to a planet
-planet with a moon in front
-planet with a ring system
-debies from destroyed ships
-"wormhole" in the system
etc.

Its also important to give the player a feeling of orientation in space, by making things stand out. (Landmarks)
If all systems have basically the same components in different color-variations, (and also generated names), a player might not be able to differentiate them when visiting a dozen systems.
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Scytale » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:46 am

Damocles wrote:I would see it more of how to "emphasize" a system.

Throwing all effects in randomly at once will make it also feel random.

For example: systems get generated with the emphasis on 1,2 or 3 "eye candy" environments, and the rest being tuned down, using default parameters or not being generated.
Then the algorithm can pick from the list witch to emphasize:

-nebulas (inside)
-nebulas in the distance
-galaxyband / milkyway
-starless black sky with a close-by galaxy in the background
-dense stars
-asteroid ring
-double star
-very bright distant star
-black hole
-close to a planet
-planet with a moon in front
-planet with a ring system
-debies from destroyed ships
-"wormhole" in the system
etc.

Its also important to give the player a feeling of orientation in space, by making things stand out. (Landmarks)
If all systems have basically the same components in different color-variations, (and also generated names), a player might not be able to differentiate them when visiting a dozen systems.


This is a good idea
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Talvieno » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:48 am

Theoretically. In practice, it would just make the universe seem like an unrecognizable, jumbled mess. There needs to be order in the chaos or the mind won't find it.
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Scytale » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:56 am

Talvieno wrote:Theoretically. In practice, it would just make the universe seem like an unrecognizable, jumbled mess. There needs to be order in the chaos or the mind won't find it.


Not everything is extremes though: different systems have different characteristics, and the function determining emphases like this could vary continuously over distance. This keeps order together with variation
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Talvieno » Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:59 am

Scytale wrote:and the function determining emphases like this could vary continuously over distance. This keeps order together with variation

This works. Otherwise all you have is static, which is as memorable as... well, static.
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Scytale » Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:02 am

Talvieno wrote:
Scytale wrote:and the function determining emphases like this could vary continuously over distance. This keeps order together with variation

This works. Otherwise all you have is static, which is as memorable as... well, static.


agreed~ too much variation, too sharply, is stultifying in its own way
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Damocles » Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:19 am

Important about presenting the content economically (given by what is available) is to get some metric of how many system the average player will be visiting
regularily.

A game that is set up location-wise, where player visit only a handful of system (large systems as in X-Rebirth) should present variations different
than a system where the gameplay spreads over many different regions (older X games, EvE).

The more systems there are, the more specific features should be emphasized only in a few systems.

If the player (on average) visits only a few systems, then they should be more feature packed per system / regional part of that system.

So its a balancing question of:
-How many distinct features are available
-How many systems (stages) will an average player visit

or the other way around:
if each system gets almost all of the graphical eye candy, but the player travel many systems in a short time, then the universe will feel very "samy".

On the other hand, if a player usually travel only like 10 systems, and some eye candy appears only very rarely, then the game generates less pleasure to the average player,
and reserves a lot of content just for the explorer types.
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Dinosawer » Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:43 am

Scytale wrote:
Dinosawer wrote:
On the other hand, if I say a system is pretty, then it doesn't need another one to compare it to. It's just pretty. Having 2 pretty systems doesn't make each only half as pretty.
(if it did, we wouldn't still be salivating at each LT screenie :ghost: )


You're right, but the comparison is nonuniform in number: if you have a thousand pretty screenies, they tend to become indistinguishable from one another if they're all "equally" stunning

No, they become indistinguishable if they all look stunning in the same way.
To use the silly allegory, the solution is not to cut all but one flower, the solution is to plant more than 1 species of pretty flowers.
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Re: Nebula Zen

Postby Talvieno » Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:45 am

Now that's a very good analogy. :thumbup:
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