Flatfingers wrote: ↑
Wed May 30, 2018 4:05 pm
If I understand you, it sounds like you're suggesting the difficulty is developing code that generates good random values (where "good" means "produces generally enjoyable gameplay objects, dynamics, and events"). It's easy to imagine wildly random values producing an unplayable star system. But a smartly-constrained random value generator (that's not too
constrained!) should work with the procedural content generation systems, rather than swamping them in bizarre configurations.
Please excuse my blundering attempts to explain myself; I'm off my game at the moment with too many work and personal things going on.
My perception of a procedurally-generated universe as LT has been described as having, is that a single seed value would produce an entire universe that was always the same, each time I ran the generator.
My best example for this is not really 100% accurate, but please take the original Elite.
Each new star system had a name, a species description, and so on. And the same seed value meant that they would be consistent across runs.
So, Lave was always called Lave, etc.
My only point here was, in LT, if the system's natives had sufficient random events in the evolution of their colony, would they eventually decide that Lave was a name that restricted profits somehow, and if they changed it to Eval, they could make more money.
At that point, with the same seed value, you've suddenly generated a different civilisation.
Whereas I'd expect the same seed value to produce a system called Lave, if I tried to share that with someone, giving them the seed wouldn't necessarily help.
And then you can take this to extremes and suggest that all systems could be affected in greater or lesser ways, to the point that 'procedural generation' doesn't really mean anything because the random events change it all anyway.
So if I take a seed, and come up with 4 star systems and 12 planets, your use of the same seed might generate 3 star systems with 16 planets.
If that happens, why bother with procedural generation at all?
Of course this is reductio ad absurdum
, mainly because I'm being thick and unable to write what I mean
So my question from all this is, at what point does procedural generation get subsumed by random events, to the point where it's not worth generating it that way at all? It seems to me that we're kinda assuming that the physical structure of a star system is the baseline procedurally generated data, and the social structure can't have a sufficiently large impact to change that physical structure, but that means that we shouldn't consider the civilisations to be procedurally generated at all, and therefore, do we end up with something that isn't really worth procedurally generating in any aspect?
I think what I'm really questioning is whether random input data is useful alongside procedurally generated input data, in universe generation.
This definitely puts a lot of work onto the shoulders of Josh and Adam. I think I'd like to see what they come up with before I conclude they may not be up to this challenge, but that's me.
To be clear, I'm not in any way questioning their ability, here; this is a higher-level purpose question, instead.