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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#31
I imagine transient wormholes as extra lines on top of this static grid. So the maps I am showing are the 'permanent' connections. For generating transient wormhole connections we can do any number of fun things (preferably long-distance and unpredictable).
I wonder if there is a good ratio of temporary wormholes to number of stars in a tile, as well as a good range for how long they should last. Perhaps 1 TWH for every 10-50 stars in the cell, connecting 2 randomly selected systems, lasting an average of 1-4 hours of gameplay. If connecting to random, perhaps they should sometimes connect to systems in other cells, giving a temporary back door?

As for a triangular grid, I like it, but why not go 3d and have a tetrahedral grid?
Image
Challenging your assumptions is good for your health, good for your business, and good for your future. Stay skeptical but never undervalue the importance of a new and unfamiliar perspective.
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#32
Indeed WH connections will be one of those 'critical to tweak' things when alpha & beta roll around. Changing the timings, frequency, distribution...will totally change the feel of the universe :o No backdoors though, as I think that generates too many problems for universe sim. Keeping boundary systems to a minimum will be crucial for performance -- a neighboring cluster being only one RNG roll away with a 'backdoor wh' will be a scary thing for performance :? But cross-region temporaries for sure. And honestly, if that's not good enough, just switch to finite universe and crank up the size. Then you will still be able to get 'backdoors' to anywhere, despite having a more limited play area.

As I mentioned in the log, I am mostly not a fan of 3D in the universe map. In fact, I am even less of a fan of it in the high-level tiling structure of the universe. To me, adding a little 3D 'fluff' to the clusters is fine, but I really don't want to try to hold a 3D-cell-based universe in my head. Personal preference. Mod it :P

Related note: if we were in 3D it would need to be a cubical grid. Devastating fact: regular tetrahedra are not space-filling (!!! such a heart-breakingly unintuitive fact that even Aristotle got it wrong !!) The only regular polyhedron with which you can fill space is a cube :cry:
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.” ~ Henry Ford
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#33
JoshParnell wrote:
Mon Jul 16, 2018 5:10 pm
Related note: if we were in 3D it would need to be a cubical grid. Devastating fact: regular tetrahedra are not space-filling (!!! such a heart-breakingly unintuitive fact that even Aristotle got it wrong !!) The only regular polyhedron with which you can fill space is a cube :cry:
Becomes more intuitive when you consider that only a square fills 2D space without rotation.
I don't know about 4+D space, but I'd assume they also can only be space filled with n-cubes.

Relevant IRC Quote:

Code: Select all

<Dwmagus> <s​ilver> cubes?!  we're fckin' cubes?! <Dwmagus> here we go - https://youtu.be/siTh10Ar-HY?t=32m12s ~~ added by S​ilver on May 03 2017 (1093)
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Toba - A Development Dump
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#35
Have you considered really low-frequency detail like galaxy shapes? I suppose it might make the infinite thing more difficult, but maybe weird stuff like intergalactic wormholes would take care of that. Or you could just traverse the actual void between galaxies… I just think it'd be interesting to have arms or the rim/core changing distribution of stars and minerals. It could create really huge trade lines that'd span thousands of stars.
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#36
0111narwhalz wrote:
Mon Jul 16, 2018 7:37 pm
Have you considered really low-frequency detail like galaxy shapes? I suppose it might make the infinite thing more difficult, but maybe weird stuff like intergalactic wormholes would take care of that. Or you could just traverse the actual void between galaxies… I just think it'd be interesting to have arms or the rim/core changing distribution of stars and minerals. It could create really huge trade lines that'd span thousands of stars.
This is easy, get a black and white image of your target shape, decide the size (in LY) of your pixels.
Then when generating stars, have the image's brightness for the specific pixel be average density of that region of space.

I've done that before :3
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Toba - A Development Dump
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#38
0111narwhalz wrote:
Mon Jul 16, 2018 8:16 pm
Silverware wrote:
Mon Jul 16, 2018 8:01 pm
black and white image
But there are three other channels! Maybe alpha could be density and red metallacity. Dunno what to do with the other two. Size or age might make sense.
R - Metallacity
G - Density
B - Lifeform Chance
A - Freakiness

Freakiness is mostly there as a chance of Freaky Stars, things like blackholes, neutron stars, and other weirdness. Higher generally towards the center of a spiral.

Lifeform Chance can be static noise for all we care, but it'll determine the chance of alien lifeforms.

Density and Metallacity are obvious.
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Toba - A Development Dump
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#39
JoshParnell wrote:
Mon Jul 16, 2018 4:13 pm
I don't know if you saw the last bit about boundaries and tiling, but yes, it will still be tile-based at the cluster level if you opt for an infinite universe. Although it is rectangular not hex atm. The thing that worries me about hex is...6 neighbors! Ahh! It feels like too many :? In fact, I have been wondering lately about a triangular grid, to cut it down to only 3 neighboring clusters...now that's what I call peace and quiet :monkey: (But hey, a tri grid and hex grid are topologically dual in 2D, so I think it will still satisfy your hex aesthetics? :D )

Yep. Well-filled square grids get hinky at the quadrants of a "four corners" intersection that aren't filled in. This is one reason why hex maps got popular even if they make distance calculations a bit less obvious.

This probably isn't a problem at the size of generating entire clusters of stars, though, given what may be the typical sparseness of a cluster (so that you don't notice the "missing" quadrants as much).

Plus, yep, two tri grids. :D
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#41
First off: huzzah for a devlog, and double huzzah for one that gives a real sense of the game that may result. The potential scale of the universe in LT comes across nicely even in these crude images; think of all the potential trade-route fun that could be had... :geek:

That said, I'm a little dismayed to read of Josh's dislike of the 3D maps. Don't get me wrong, I totally get it; in this context 3D may just make things more confusing. However, it's only when seen in 3D that the potential for long distance wormholes and the like really come to the fore. If these aren't represented in 3D then they may show up as routes that "cross" over existing routes, and I get why that may not appeal aesthetically. I didn't quite grasp if vanilla LT would have the 3D representation or not (Josh implied something about modding it in) but if it doesn't then I strongly suggest at least providing 2D maps with different projections so that the actual distances between systems is conveyed.
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#42
I'm going to hazard a guess that most of the effort in doing a 3D universe isn't how to generate the universe -- it's how to show the universe.

The basics of manipulating a simple 3D map are relatively easy: zoom in and out, click-and-hold to grab the universe and twist it around. What takes time is utility and clarity and beauty: doing fade-in/fade-out smoothly, moving gazillions of stars performantly, and having the whole thing be functional -- you can see the information you need to make good gameplay decisions -- at any zoom level and any rotation. SpaceEngine does this, but that's nearly all it does.

I once coded something like this -- just enough to start to get an appreciation for how many finicky little details there are in making a 3D universe map look good, feel good, and be usable.

Image

But I'm not a great coder. Maybe it was just hard for me, and 3D universes are easy to render attractively and usefully today. If so, then maybe Josh can be persuaded to allow 3D universes.
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#43
I'm reminded of the Infinite Space games:

* Weird Worlds -- Navigation and interpretation is so trivial that you hardly need to think about it. You can see the situation at a glance, and get on with making decisions.

* Sea of Stars -- Navigation and interpretation is so tricky and awkward by comparison that it's a completely new game skill to master, all in order to achieve something that you probably didn't want to need to think about, because you wanted to get on with making decisions. Granted one may find some enjoyment in manipulating the 3D map (and it is kinda neat), but it's unquestionably a dramatically more time-consuming process for the player.

In other words: 3D maps have genuine ramifications for gameplay and, despite their pretty 3D-ness, those ramifications might prove to be undesirable.

None of which is to say that it can't work for LT. In Infinite Space one is constantly hopping from place to place, whereas in LT one might wish to spend several orders of magnitude more time in any given location, so the scenarios are far from equivalent; but I think it's still a useful example.
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#44
Flatfingers wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:48 pm
lovely spacey image

Wow Flat, this looks very cool! And very detailed. I love these tech levels. A real shame that we will not see 'non-corporeal sentience' in that universe :(

Employee 2-4601 wrote:
Wed Jul 18, 2018 6:03 am
* Weird Worlds -- Navigation and interpretation is so trivial that you hardly need to think about it. You can see the situation at a glance, and get on with making decisions.

* Sea of Stars -- Navigation and interpretation is so tricky and awkward by comparison that it's a completely new game skill to master, all in order to achieve something that you probably didn't want to need to think about, because you wanted to get on with making decisions. Granted one may find some enjoyment in manipulating the 3D map (and it is kinda neat), but it's unquestionably a dramatically more time-consuming process for the player.

Very interesting links. Yep, good demonstration of how much easier the 2D map is to read.

As demonstrated in the devlog, 3D generation is already implemented. The 3Dness of the map is a knob. If you like 3D, turn it up. Otherwise, don't. Easy :)

ThaPear wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 7:39 am
Will it be possible to build those interconnects yourself? By constructing a warpgate in two systems and linking them?
JoshParnell wrote:
Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:26 pm
I have mixed feelings about on-demand bridging and am not ready to make a statement on the subject :ghost: I find it very likely that some form of controllable wormhole tech will exist, but this is a really delicate matter of balance to me, and I don't have the right set of limitations nailed down for those mechanics.

In other words, controllable inter-system navigation will exist in some form, but I'm not positive about the restrictions yet. Questions like whether the connection will be exact (i.e. you get to choose both endpoints), whether it will be permanent, etc. need to be thought through carefully in terms of gameplay ramifications. It is unlikely that you will be able to construct a connection that is both exact and permanent, as that feels like too much power over the structure of space IMO. Temporary bridging is much more appealing to me in terms of balance.
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.” ~ Henry Ford
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Re: [Josh] Friday, July 13, 2018

#45
JoshParnell wrote:
Wed Jul 18, 2018 1:00 pm
In other words, controllable inter-system navigation will exist in some form, but I'm not positive about the restrictions yet. Questions like whether the connection will be exact (i.e. you get to choose both endpoints), whether it will be permanent, etc. need to be thought through carefully in terms of gameplay ramifications. It is unlikely that you will be able to construct a connection that is both exact and permanent, as that feels like too much power over the structure of space IMO. Temporary bridging is much more appealing to me in terms of balance.
*cough cough* :ghost:

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