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The structure of the Universe

#1
An old thought bubbled up about what the structure of LT is really like, at the macroscale.

I was trying to rationalize how the LT verses could fit inside a real sea of stars, how these systems are full of life and stuff, but you can see tens of thousands of stars in any system, 99.99% you can't visit (yes i know, you can't visit any of them since they're just dots, but for suspension of disbelief)

The thing which makes most sense is that there exists a wormhole network, it connects some stars but not others, and that the civilizations of LT are just those that happened to arise in a system connected to this vast network. Plenty of other civilizations arose too, but they were trapped by the vast distances of travelling through deep space without the benefit of a wormhole to make the journey nearly instantaneous...

Image

Here is a hypothetical map of some portion of an LT Verse. Some systems, though incredibly far apart in normal space, are right next to each other (Alpha Dog - Sirius) while there exist systems that are far closer in normal space, but the actual journey through normal space would be inconceivably long and so it makes far more sense to take a very long route through the wormhole net, get there in a tiny fraction of the time (Alpha Dog - Fartz).

You also have unstable wormholes that change the distance between systems dramatically, that when the wormhole is open, it can cut travel time significantly. If it's closed and you want to get from Jamaica to Fartz, that's 4 jumps, possibly through hostile space, but when it's open, it's only 2 jumps.

Then there are systems which can only be accessed from an unstable wormhole, meaning you can only get there or out of there occasionally, like Sol to New New York. And there are other systems, like Westeros, Pandora, and Omicron Percei which are known to have life and resources, but they just happen to not be on the network, and are either totally inaccessible or require very special tech that could jump from any system to any system without need of wormholes.

For the most part what i'm saying is: Should the star map of LT include stars we can't go to? It's a fairly minor and mostly aesthetic thing, and wouldn't be hard to implement, but gameplay wise, its entirely unnecessary.
Image The traditional view of robotics, the metal servant who doesn't ask questions, is merely nostalgia for slavery.
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Re: The structure of the Universe

#2
A modified "Endless Space" method, I like the idea of options and limits that foster different gameplay styles.

You can use a wormhole/gate to get there but this way is through monitored and controlled wormholes. Policed by factions/governments. It also might not be efficient and could be limited to large ships, so if you want your fighter squadrons to go through you have to put them in a carrier (creates a purpose for Galactica style carriers, which people love) If you want to control access you'd have to have a fleet to be able to blockade a wormhole, this allows large scale WW2 style fleet combat.

You can get there through normal space which means you are "off the radar" but it takes longer and is riskier, unless you are a really skilled pilot or pump research into warp drives etc and maybe is limited to smaller ships, this might be a nice way of making Firefly/Han Solo smugglers/pirate gameplay work.

But I think the vision if LT is if you can see it on the map you can go there, so I feel unvisitable stars are not suitable, the in game star-field "skybox" though, well that was the No Man's Sky issue right.
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Re: The structure of the Universe

#3
I like the idea of being able to see star systems (for instance in the vincinity of your starting system), that you currently can't travel to (hyperspace/wormhole drive not researched yet or link of worm holes not yet known), but eventually you should be able to find a way to go there (no use of generating stars you can't ever visit).

E.g. picture yourself starting the game in (on Hyperions map) Alpha Dog.
You would (maybe only after discovering/scanning the resprective wormhole portal in-sytstem) see that there is a wormhole to Sirius.
But you could see the neighboring system up to a certain distance (say, you could see Fartz, Gemini, Elysium Sirius and Omicron Percei), even though you have not scanned a portal or been there. Maybe you could buy maps of systems (and sell them, too??) even further away and then be able to see them on the map like Omicron Percei.

The effect I would really like is that you can see there is stuff to explore even though you have not (yet) discovered the way/wormhole links to those systems.
So - to stay with above example, starting out in Alpha Dog, all other start within "visibility" range would look like Omicron Percei or Westeros. Once you have discovered a wormhole (and maybe have to travel through it), you get to see what system it links to (purple lines + white circle).
Hyperion wrote: ...
For the most part what i'm saying is: Should the star map of LT include stars we can't go to? It's a fairly minor and mostly aesthetic thing, and wouldn't be hard to implement, but gameplay wise, its entirely unnecessary.
Short answer: No ;)

PS:
I vaguely remember an old DOS game called Ascendancy that kinda had system exploration working like this (you could see all stars from the start, but had to discover the links/wormholes between them. Always made my head spin when I was rotating the 3D starmap, always took me a while until I could "see" what stars were in front and which ones were in the back. Anybody remember that??

Edit: found a video on youtube: link. Star map is shown around 3 mins (sorry for the pretty clueless guy playing the game ;) )
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Re: The structure of the Universe

#4
I definitely see what both of you are saying, and yes, I feel it is a bit of a downside to the idea that you can't visit everything you see, but there's the converse downside that if there are an infinite number of stars in the universe, if you really start to explore them all, your star map gets kind of crazy too. Josh brought the skybox to 100,000 stars, now I understand only seeing the nearby systems from within a system, but if you look at your starmap and zoom out...

From within a system of a veteran explorer showing known systems
Spoiler:      SHOW
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The same explorer's starmap at a distant zoom
Spoiler:      SHOW
Image
It's just bonkers imo to have every single star in the sky be visitable and appear like that

You could group it into sectors, but how would those be defined, and showing intersector wormholes could still get very messy.
Spoiler:      SHOW
Image
But this is largely dependant on how josh and co implement the UI and the universe structure... and I suppose it could be a mod as well...
Image The traditional view of robotics, the metal servant who doesn't ask questions, is merely nostalgia for slavery.
User: JoshParnell is accountable for this user's actions.
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Re: The structure of the Universe

#5
Plofre wrote:
Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:41 am
I like the idea of being able to see star systems (for instance in the vincinity of your starting system), that you currently can't travel to (hyperspace/wormhole drive not researched yet or link of worm holes not yet known), but eventually you should be able to find a way to go there (no use of generating stars you can't ever visit).

E.g. picture yourself starting the game in (on Hyperions map) Alpha Dog.
You would (maybe only after discovering/scanning the resprective wormhole portal in-sytstem) see that there is a wormhole to Sirius.
But you could see the neighboring system up to a certain distance (say, you could see Fartz, Gemini, Elysium Sirius and Omicron Percei), even though you have not scanned a portal or been there. Maybe you could buy maps of systems (and sell them, too??) even further away and then be able to see them on the map like Omicron Percei.

The effect I would really like is that you can see there is stuff to explore even though you have not (yet) discovered the way/wormhole links to those systems.
So - to stay with above example, starting out in Alpha Dog, all other start within "visibility" range would look like Omicron Percei or Westeros. Once you have discovered a wormhole (and maybe have to travel through it), you get to see what system it links to (purple lines + white circle).
Hyperion wrote: ...
For the most part what i'm saying is: Should the star map of LT include stars we can't go to? It's a fairly minor and mostly aesthetic thing, and wouldn't be hard to implement, but gameplay wise, its entirely unnecessary.
Short answer: No ;)

PS:
I vaguely remember an old DOS game called Ascendancy that kinda had system exploration working like this (you could see all stars from the start, but had to discover the links/wormholes between them. Always made my head spin when I was rotating the 3D starmap, always took me a while until I could "see" what stars were in front and which ones were in the back. Anybody remember that??

Edit: found a video on youtube: link. Star map is shown around 3 mins (sorry for the pretty clueless guy playing the game ;) )
Then we'd have the endless headaches that come with freeform interstellar flight.
Like making individual systems important and interesting when you just fly past 99% of them dont matter for a given journey.

Also how to keep military strategy a thing when fleets just pop up anywhere with utter disregard for anything between their fleetbase and their target
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Re: The structure of the Universe

#6
Hmm, more a suggestion than a statement, but the idea just hit me. If say we have an initial wormhole network that exist as i described, but have a high level technology that can actually create wormholes to any star. These would be artificial and require constant power to maintain, as described extensively here...somewhere in there :lol: . it would make every star on the map "potentially" visitable, but for plenty of players and plenty of stars, this just wouldn't be the case.
Image The traditional view of robotics, the metal servant who doesn't ask questions, is merely nostalgia for slavery.
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