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Offline Isaac.Eiland-Hall us

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Re: My new game
« Reply #35 on: November 09, 2012, 03:12:10 PM »
Heard of Minecraft?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9t3FREAZ-k

That's a great example IMHO of how today you can get something to show - if it's compelling, keep working on it; I'm in the "release early, release often" camp.

Offline IgorEliezer br

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Re: My new game
« Reply #36 on: November 09, 2012, 03:25:07 PM »
Heard of Minecraft?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9t3FREAZ-k

Quote from:
Markus "Notch" Person, 2009
This is a very early test of an Infiniminer clone I'm working on. It will have more resource management and materials, if I ever get around to finishing it.
Way to go. 8)

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #37 on: November 09, 2012, 04:37:16 PM »
Kieron,
One thing I wanted to say and forgot about Railroad Tycoon.  It bothers me having a train that is loaded only one way.  Maybe it is because for the better part of my life some of my family and many of their friends were truckers.  Their one big complaint was not diesel prices or being away from home, sleep deprivation, etc., it was having to dead head home for the weekend!  That was by far their biggest expense on a weekly basis.  I can only think trains would be similar.  Railroad Tycoon (only the original) had switching stations that allowed you to change cars, add cars, remove cars,  wait forloads, etc.  You could create some really complex operations.  It is unrealistic to think every little factory would have a switching station with an unlimited number and variety of cars though so some compromise would be needed there.  Perhaps only switching stations in the larger cities.  This should allow for only short dead head trips and actually even an added element - moving empty cars from one location to another.

Being unrealistic is not the number one reason I dislike having trains, trucks, boats being loaded only one way.  It is simply not interesting having a train
pick up coal at a mine and delivering it to a power plant.  There has to be some complexity to a route to make it interesting.

@Markohs
When I first decided to learn C++ I downloaded VS2010 because I had used it before and 4 out of 5 sites and at least that ratio of you guys, maybe more, said that was the way to go.  It was not what I wanted to do because for many years now, I've tried to support non proprietary stuff.  My oldest son is a huge fan of Apple and my experience with that has only has only increased my contempt (maybe that is not the right word) for proprietary stuff.  I get videos of my grand daughter in .mov format which will not run on my computer.  Trying to find something that will run it without paying for it is like
looking for a needle in a haystack.  It will run on my TV video player but it plays upside down.  That is not the worst of it.  I dabble in the stock market and when I look at Apple margins, they are incredible.  Then I see kids (and I use that term loosely), working for minimum wage and running around with iphones.  This, IMHO, is nothing short of corporate victimization of the poor.

Microsoft products are very expensive as well.  If no one uses this this free and non-proprietary stuff it will cease to exist.  At that point I doubt VC2010 will continue to be free.  So as much as I respect your advice, and I do hugely, I have to try for the MinGW.  This is especially true since my experience with VC2010 recently was not good.

I followed your links and read most of it.  I think I had pretty much already decided to do what is talked about there to some extent.  That is I'm going to concentrate on the Ogre tuts and the landscape until it is done.

@Isaac
Yes, I followed your link in another thread about minecraft.  It just will not do what I want though and at this point I'm in no hurry to publish anything.  I've been thinking about this game for at least 10 years.  Now I'm happy when I get a program to compile, understand a new concept in Blender or the C++ tuts.

@Igor
The only thing I have to say about this is to Markohs and that is - Dang it!  Don't let this die - you are way too young to someday regret not finishing it.


Modify:  Actually if you give us a link to it, I think I might be willing to do some Blender files for it if you want.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2012, 04:46:35 PM by Roads »

Offline kierongreen

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Re: My new game
« Reply #38 on: November 09, 2012, 06:13:25 PM »
The lack of management required with waggons is also one of the aspects I dislike about Railroad Tycoon. I can understand the reasoning behind this simplified gameplay - with there being more to do in the wider economy in RRT having to design detailed track layouts and manage waggons could overload the player. However I prefer the aspects Simutrans focuses on.

Offline isidoro

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Re: My new game
« Reply #39 on: November 09, 2012, 10:53:11 PM »
Roads, I think that you should keep all the fan support (success, etc.) apart from all this business.  Your goal is to accomplish a 10 year dream.  Don't make that depend on others' viewpoint and enjoy the way, the travel...

Take the example of your self-made house.  Would you regret having built it just because no one liked it?  What about the feeling of accomplishment?

Fan support is like other types of love, you plant the seed but the crop is not guaranteed.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #40 on: November 10, 2012, 01:57:01 AM »
Yes Isidoro, I agree to some extent.  Still there is so much that will have to be done just to get the bare bones playable, I'm thinking 2-3 years at least, it sure would be good if at that point, some people liked it enough to contribute in the way of code or graphics to add things to the game.  So it does matter...

BTW, would you consider telling us a little about the game you are working on?  I'm certainly willing to make the same offer to you as I did to Markohs in the way of graphics if you need/want any of that stuff.  I'm still learning and actually it would even help me if something I did was for a project instead of just practice.

In case anyone is wondering why I'm making these offers instead of doing graphics for Simutrans, the reason is two fold:   I want to see the ins and outs of doing something for 3D.  Also, Simutrans has a wealth of artists already.

Offline Isaac.Eiland-Hall us

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Re: My new game
« Reply #41 on: November 10, 2012, 09:59:53 PM »
BTW, if you get to the point of needing/wanting a forum, I'd be glad to host you on my part of the Simutrans server - I have plenty of resources :)

($10/yr for a domain, although a subdomain off sitedev.us would work too)

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #42 on: November 10, 2012, 10:29:41 PM »
Thank you Isaac!  The thought had crossed my mind about a forum at some point.  Of course that is awhile away as long as y'all will tolerate me posting here.

$10 a year is great!  Can you just deduct that from my contributions to Simutrans?  I certainly do plan on continuing that occasionally.  To be real plain spoken and honest, I think you have done more than your share in that area.

Offline isidoro

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Re: My new game
« Reply #43 on: November 10, 2012, 11:31:09 PM »
[...]
BTW, would you consider telling us a little about the game you are working on?
[...]

Of course.  I want to make a game on the line of Simutrans but with some things changed.  For instance:
  • Not exclusively centered on transportation, only mainly centered
  • Not forcefully realistic (in real life, that and that happens, not an argument for or against something)
  • More detailed: transportation by feet
  • With independent documentation, part of development
  • Better multiplayer/network support
  • To be run in present-day hardware
This summer I centered on network code and it is done.  Terrain has been done some years ago.  Now, as I wrote earlier in this post, technology has changed and I want to move most calculations to the GPU.  It is fun to learn it.

Thanks for your offer of help.  I would like the buildings, vehicles, etc. to be generated by algorithm based on few models vs. one element-one design followed in ST.


Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #44 on: November 11, 2012, 02:51:57 AM »
@Isidoro

Your concept sounds like the reason modding came about and its popularity has exploded in the last few years to the point some games include modding ability in the release.  This is a good thing.  I had at times wondered why there were no mods to Simutrans but it was likely released before the idea was embraced by developers.  Maybe the idea was there but in the form of the paks.  At any rate I'm under the impression that a mod to the game core would be...well just easier to start from scratch especially since you only want to support present day hardware.

This is something I agree with completely.  As much as I would like to see 3rd world nations rise in stature, I don't want to tie my gaming experience to their machines, anymore than I want other aspects of my life to reflect their living conditions.

I also agree that a game based exclusively on one thing does not offer enough variety even though this is the universally accepted practice.  Society has been wrong about things before...i.e., the earth is flat. :)

I'm not sure what you mean by more detailed...transportation by feet; also I'm not sure what you mean about the documentation.

Multiplayer/network support seems a necessity these days.  I never play it because I'm such a slow thinker.  By the time I've decided what I want to do everyone else is half way through their session.

This idea of creating graphics with a program is entirely new to me.  I haven't a clue how it could be done with a 2D paint package but I can see possibilities with Blender or some other package where images are built with vertices, lines and faces.  Since you can save images at various stages of development thereby giving the artist the ability to create different images with far fewer clicks/key strokes, I'm not sure the time involved in writing a computer program to do it would be efficient.  I might be wrong since so many images are required though.

If you tell me specifically what you want, whether a building, an engine, truck or whatever, what level of detail you want - finished, solid, wireframe and the file format, I'll try to produce that for you.  I'm not saying I'll only do one, two or a hundred but it has to begin with one.

Offline sdog

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Re: My new game
« Reply #45 on: November 11, 2012, 02:57:21 AM »
Quote
I had at times wondered why there were no mods to Simutrans but it was likely released before the idea was embraced by developers.  Maybe the idea was there but in the form of the paks.  At any rate I'm under the impression that a mod to the game core would be...well just easier to start from scratch especially since you only want to support present day hardware.

paksets are exactly the answer to your question, just a different name for mods. don't forget they change game parameters too.

the game core can be modded in a sense: you can have your own fork of it. its just going much farther than a simple mod.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #46 on: November 11, 2012, 09:07:44 AM »
@sdog
I did not know you could change game parameters within the core game with a pak.  That is good to know!

Offline Isaac.Eiland-Hall us

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Re: My new game
« Reply #47 on: November 11, 2012, 03:45:00 PM »
Simutrans Experimental is a fork, which is what sdog is saying about changing core features; not a pak. :)

Offline isidoro

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Re: My new game
« Reply #48 on: November 11, 2012, 11:45:56 PM »
[...]
At any rate I'm under the impression that a mod to the game core would be...well just easier to start from scratch especially since you only want to support present day hardware.

Roads, there is more to it that what I've mentioned.  That makes modifying present ST not a choice.  I would like to change the design from the basement.  For instance, I would like 0% CPU time expense in pause mode or with small maps.  Big maps are not a goal.  I would like not to lose a saved game when there is a memory error.  I would like to have real day/night cycles (with different traffic patterns)...  I would like everything more connected, for instance, a real role of mail transportation in game mechanics.  Money won't have a central role in the game and even will be able to be played without it...  Too many differences to be able to do it on a well-developed, running project as ST.

[...]
I'm not sure what you mean by more detailed...transportation by feet; also I'm not sure what you mean about the documentation.

One of the things I don't like about ST, but also RailRoad Tycoon series is station coverage.  It seems pretty unnatural to me that you have an advantage in placing a station some tiles away from a factory and you don't get penalized in any way.  That could be done in ST by merely making the goods in coverage area travel by themselves to the station and lasting some time in doing so, but I intend to do it with a person carrying things door to door.

Multiplayer/network support seems a necessity these days.  I never play it because I'm such a slow thinker.  By the time I've decided what I want to do everyone else is half way through their session.

The way I have done it will suit you since the game go as quick as the slowest of the players.

This idea of creating graphics with a program is entirely new to me.
[...]

The idea is not to make a program to help artists design buildings but to have a program inside the game that designs buildings on itself on the fly when needed based on some data.  Sort of a procedural city algorithm.  I think Prissi gave some good examples of the concept in a recent post.

If you tell me specifically what you want, whether a building, an engine, truck or whatever, what level of detail you want - finished, solid, wireframe and the file format, I'll try to produce that for you.  I'm not saying I'll only do one, two or a hundred but it has to begin with one.

 ;D   By the time I come to the point of needing that, you will surely have finished your game.  Progress is sooooo  slow.  But I'm enjoying the walk...  For me, accomplishment is just doing it, not finishing it.  That will come, if it eventually comes...  But, thanks anyway.

Offline prissi

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Re: My new game
« Reply #49 on: November 12, 2012, 09:21:26 AM »
Some stuff is done easily.

0% for pause: no problem, if you are ok loosing the building during pause option.

Not loosing any data on crash: Play on your local server. Otherwise you need a miracle program, which not looses its stuff during crashes.

Real day-night cycles: That is a very easy to mod, you just had to alter step_passagiere() in simcity.cc to not generate factory and tourist pax during nicht and maybe also only 1/4 during night. Trivial. The problem though: People in simutrans of wait a simulated day for one bus quite often ...

Freight has zero station coverage (.i.e. need an adjacent extension building/station tile): Would weed very little modification. (Same for different coverage areas for different station types.) Unlike the latter a different behavior for freight would be less confusing than different station coverages. It would only break every exisiting game. Still, it is an interesting challenge.

Those are all much much less complicated stuff than double way single directional roads ...

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #50 on: November 12, 2012, 11:54:22 AM »
Isidoro,

A real role for mail in game?  Yes, of course.  For example, a factory should not accept raw materials until it has mail service.  Contracts need to be signed and even if hand delivered there is still the matter of payment for raw materials which is almost always mailed I believe.  Since there is now no real penalty for mail piling up in the post office, some mail should be tracked.  If payment is not delivered on time, then the mine stops producing coal or whatever for the factory.  Of course currently there are wild fluctuations in mail generation and something would have to be done about that.

What to do about night is a problem in every game I've ever played that had it including RPG games.  I'm neutral on that because I have no ideas for a solution.  I do have some ideas.  In ST night time is too dark.  Were is just light enough to actually do anything, you could continue playing.  If this were the case though, and I think we are on the same page here, it should not be business as usual.  There would only be certain situations and vehicles that traveled normally at night such as trains and ships.

I had not thought of your idea of money (I'm assuming you mean the player making/losing money) until you posted this.  It is intriguing, my impulse is to like it and will think further on that.

On this idea of station coverage there are possibly several solutions and perhaps different solutions for different situations.  Often it seems game developers get into the mode of using a broad brush and painting everything the same way and the results are just monotonus.  Trucks could back up to factory unloading docks or pull into unloading bays with cranes for example.  It would also be very cool having fork lifts doing the job of moving cargo from vehicle to factory - only the graphic is needed.

If you can come up with a way to do multiplayer where the individual can play at his own speed without irritating the other players I will be eternally grateful.  I actually do enjoy playing with others.  In fact it does work in RPG games but no idea how it could be implemented in a strategy type situation where the early bird gets the worm.

I'm sorry I missed the thread about the game producing graphics as needed.  Since I began playing computer games there have been a few situations about graphics that always bothered me and seemed to be little or no solution.  One is when you have a guy cutting trees down.  The last time I saw this in a game the animation simply went away after the guy chopped for awhile.  It sure would be nice to see the fallen trees.  I wonder if this is an application that would apply?
 

Offline Ters

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Re: My new game
« Reply #51 on: November 12, 2012, 04:23:54 PM »
I think that realistically, loading bays for road vehicles would be part of the factory. The problem with that is that the player, as a potentially pure transportation company, has no control of how many loading bays there are. The way Simutrans works, it's best to have one bay per vehicle carrying goods away (and at least one vehicle per consumer), plus one for incomming trucks. For railroads, I'm not quite sure who's responsible for the siding. When it comes to shipping, oil rigs already have their own stops, and factory with their own airports (beyond helipads) is probably so rare that it can be ignored.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #52 on: November 12, 2012, 05:52:12 PM »
When applying the concept of realism to a game, people often fail to think critically.  There are at least two aspects of the concept.  One is what happens in the real world.  The other is what appears realistic in a game to the player.  Personally I'm unconcerned with what happens in reality as long as the simulation of it appears realistic in a game.

Offline Sarlock

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Re: My new game
« Reply #53 on: November 12, 2012, 09:30:28 PM »
There is also a third consideration... what works best for the simulation.  When modelling something after reality, sometimes you have to play around with the formula in order to make the overall game still enjoyable and work.  The idea of having realistic night time traffic flows would necessitate the ability to adjust night time transportation flows (shutting busses and trains down) which may overcomplicate the game... it may model reality better but makes the game play less enjoyable.  Transportation companies have teams of engineers, planners, etc, to help design the overall flow of the system... the player probably doesn't want to devote the same amount of time to the minutia of planning and balancing the details of their system.  Therefore you need a balance between micromanagement and macromanagement.  Some things you welcome the player to set up and some things you let the simulation run for you.

If you look at Civilization... from a realism standpoint it had some similarities but it also makes a lot of generalizations in order to make the game actually fun to play.  If you made an empire game true to reality, I doubt anyone would enjoy playing it for long... balancing gameplay vs. realism in a simulation is a tricky balance.

And then if you throw in multiplayer, you add a whole new complicating element to the mix... what might work well in single player may not work at all in a multiplayer game.

Offline isidoro

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Re: My new game
« Reply #54 on: November 13, 2012, 12:24:35 AM »
Nice comments.  It's a pity that I can only connect once a day.

@prissi: there are many more changes to the game engine to be able to do it in present ST: native 3D rendering, for instance.  It is much easier to do it from scratch than using the present design of ST, which was thought for other time's hardware.  A working 3D rendering map with objects, forests, etc. took me a summer.  Compare that with the efforts of Markohs and others bringing 3D to ST.

There is also the problem with understanding the code.  If you do it from scratch, it is easier than understand someone else's work.  And the problem with the language...

The same happens with multilane roads, as you put it, a real nightmare to implement in ST.  Direct and easy in a new game.

Regarding not loosing data, the idea is to have incremental saving.  The game is saved at the beginning of each month and from them on, only the changes are saved on the fly.  If a problem happens, you get your last savegame and increments and rebuild the exact situation you have before the crash.  It is true that I don't know if that will scale well enough for big games...


@Roads: by a real role of mail, I mean mail with real content.  For instance, if a factory wants a contract with other factory, maybe it sends a message to the other one.  If you don't deliver that message properly, that possibility is lost.  That is the trend I want to deepen in the simulation.

I working now so that nighttime is skipped altogether.  Although you have to go to work early in the morning: more traffic then.

By making money lose its central role I mean that all these games are more or less moneycentric.  I see money as a way of exchanging goods between elements of the game.  It is not the player's money.  In my game, money is no more different that coal or mail in present ST.

When playing multiplayer, my idea is that you have to look for players you like to play with.  If someone is too quick or too slow for me, it is not a problem of the game, but of choosing the right opponents.

@Sarlock: you are very right about your comments on playability.  One can make the best of simulations, but, hey, it may bore the sheep.  That's a big concern, specially since there are many tastes among people.  That's why if I come to an end and I like what I get, I would be satisfied...

Another problem is the short run/long run player.  If a simulation is too complicated, new players won't dare come close to it.  But if it is very simple, an old player will get tired of it.  I have some ideas about how to deal with it, though...

Offline Ters

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Re: My new game
« Reply #55 on: November 13, 2012, 06:42:22 AM »
There are several compelling reasons for thinking of doing Simutrans 2, rather than continue developing Simutrans (except for bugfixes). One would take the concepts that works well in Simutrans and combine it with the most universally wanted new features, free from the inherent constraints of the old code. The biggest problem is that Simutrans fans seem to be extremely divided about what works, what they want changed and how.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #56 on: November 13, 2012, 08:05:46 AM »

So many good points here, I'm going to start with the last one first:


@Ters
Yes!  I'm wondering if in my game I should have little more than a landscape and everything be an addon.  I think if there is ever a Simutrans 2 it should be as bare bones as possible with at least one layer between the core and what is now the paks.


@Isidoro
So the mail could in fact make the game completely non-linear?  That is a fabulous idea, wonder if you can make it work?  We don't normally think of a strategy game in that way but it really is.  Whether we play big games, little games or in-between, we are all playing with the same set of conditions.  This would allow branching, quite a revolutionary idea, IMO.


I do not think I will have night time in my game either, certainly not at first.


The money:
This I think you are touching on moving from a player controlled transportation company to god mode and personally I like that better.  The reason is when it is all about the player making or losing money it is tied down one dimensionally, there are so few options of different things to do without stepping outside the player mandate.  The thing that bothers me much more though is that the engine is required to be the bad guy and do all sorts of "cheating" type things to make the game challenging for the player.  If the game play is set so the player only interrupts what would normally happen with a new set of instructions, this is far more interesting.  This is what I'm planning on doing in my game.  Not sure if we are thinking similarly here or not.


@Sarlock
Absolutely.  The trouble is sometimes you really do not know what you like or dislike until you do it and sometimes that even takes more than once.  To some extent it is just a guessing game of what can be fun doing and what will be just boring or tedious.  If you add to that what players like/dislike, it is pretty much a crap shoot.  You just hope you hit on something you and others will like.


As much as I loved the early versions of Civilization, the game play always left me dissatisfied because of the lack of, or inadequacy of, economic factors.  The idea that appealed to me was the concept of empire building...apparently the Devs thought empires could only be built by employing the ideas of such personalities as Alexander, Caesar, Napolean and Hitler, that is, expansion by conquest.  Later versions only reinforced this idea to point I didn't even bother buying the last release.

Offline prissi

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Re: My new game
« Reply #57 on: November 13, 2012, 08:59:22 AM »
I easily confer that simutrans has many restrictions. And there were interesting 3D games around like Straße & Schiene and the game in the other thread just under development.

The main problem is to get somewhere where things work good enough. I know at least of three other approaches to 3d transport simulation, from which one is not completely dead (Transport Empire). But all of them stopped/stucked when the landscape was working, i.e. are more model railways than transport simulators. (No judgement here.) While some at least still aimed for transport simulation, aparently the effort to get a nice landscape working was enough for most.

Given the effort needed to be just about state of the art graphically, it is very hard to be one the same time good enough (motivated too) for a nice UI design and mathematics and algorithm needed for routing and so on.

While in principle simutrans is simple in its core, it took 10 years of refinement to be at the level we are now. JUst play an early version (some 0.78 and 84.22 are still around.) Therefore I think the only way to realize something like a full range transport simulator in 3D base on current designs is a team of at least three people. Or you will have strong contrains either at 3D, UI, or Routing - strong enough to may even miss critical mass.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #58 on: November 13, 2012, 09:55:32 AM »
Yeah Prissi I honestly had not thought about all the stuff that would have to be done - all the many things like routing that works great in Simutrans.  I guess I have sort of sub consciously and it is why I'm a fan of the game.

If my effort at some point joins the many, many others on the pile of unfinished projects it is then what Markohs said in a previous post, there is still Simutrans.  This is why I plan on continuing support of this game because, IMO, it is the best one.

Offline isidoro

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Re: My new game
« Reply #59 on: November 13, 2012, 02:08:51 PM »
I've stolen five minutes to connect, since this thread is highly interesting to me.  I see similarities between ST (software) and PC architecture (hardware).  You can almost run a 1987 piece of software in present PC and that's amazing, but that also carries a burden of compatibility in all the PC design.  ST is an impressive long-time work, with better and worse design decisions, with decisions that were formerly good and now not so good, but overall a working solution.  Not only from the simulation point of view, but also from the playability point of view.

Part of the time I cannot have spent in my project was time I have spent playing ST!  And that's good.  A new project has the advantage of a new design, but the disadvantage of the huge amount of work to be done.  So I think that ST should continue to be developed as it is now.

I'm afraid that most of the things that may seem logical, feasible, even desirable, most probably won't work for a game.  That's the main risk for a new project, for sure.

@Roads: yes, mail can give a non-linear behavior, but interesting systems are non-linear, aren't they? ;)  Another thing I would like to play with is locality.  In ST and other transportation games, some things happen instantaneously in places distant apart.  I don't like it.  Another thing a working message system can help.

Yes, I think that my idea is more similar to a God game.

One thing I want to keep apart for the game is war and similar...  Why?  Why not.  There are a lot of war-like games out there.  I don't like any.  There'll be no armies, weapons, etc.  That doesn't mean that you cannot be evil...  What would happen if another player relies heavily on the coal I transport and, from today to tomorrow, I stop doing it?





Offline Sarlock

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Re: My new game
« Reply #60 on: November 13, 2012, 07:06:34 PM »
For any given graphical approach to a game, it makes certain tasks easier and some harder.  For ST, the 2D approach probably makes the pathing, train blocking and collision calculations a bit easier as everything is based on a set grid.  A true 3D game would have no such grid and everything would have to be calculated using more complex algorithms and systems (and any complex system is prone to bugs) to get all of the vehicles moving properly.  I can see a lot of 3D transport games hitting a wall at this point as this becomes the not fun part of doing the game.  The 3D landscape is fun because there is a visual reward for your efforts.  Doing the transportation groundwork could take months with little to no reward until it's finally all done and working.
Besides division of labour and different skill sets, the other advantage of a team is that members will motivate one another to keep going when they might otherwise be losing a bit of momentum.  Releasing a prototype of your game can also achieve this in some part by having excited future players push you along with their enthusiasm.

Offline sdog

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Re: My new game
« Reply #61 on: November 13, 2012, 11:08:19 PM »
This [the dynamics] becomes the not fun part of doing the game.  The 3D landscape is fun because there is a visual reward for your efforts.  Doing the transportation groundwork could take months with little to no reward until it's finally all done and working.
That's fun, always thought it's exactly the other way round.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #62 on: November 14, 2012, 04:36:15 AM »
@Isidoro
Yes, non-linear is good.  I think for it to be really good, it can either favorably or adversely affect either the player's goal or something he simply likes.  For example, a truck carrying chemicals wrecks and spills chemicals over the landscape.  If there is no clean up possibility in the game - the economic loss for the trip would be minimal in a big game but the chemical spill lasting a few years before it goes away would be an eye sore.

Again about the money:
I really hope you can come up with something that works.  The player needs some gage as to how he is doing.  I'm thinking in my game it is going to come in way of welfare and happiness.  That may not be enough of a reward but hopefully we'll see.  Of course losing means the people starve to death or they return to the mother country.

I do not like war either but I would not rule it out completely.  In fact if I needed coal desperately and another nation had tons of it and would not sell it to me simply to be evil, I would probably start a war with them. :)

@Sarlock
You make an excellent case for releasing something where people can get interested in a project.  I'll keep that in mind if/when I get to that point.  Right now this learning process is something like Frodo's trip with the ring. :)

One thing I want to add here.  Modular programming has been the accepted way of doing it for many years now.  I wonder if there are people are talking about modular games?  I haven't googled but will probably do that.  As was mentioned early, SimuTrans has an absolutely excellent routing system.  Why should anyone try to reinvent that wheel?

Offline el_slapper

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Re: My new game
« Reply #63 on: November 14, 2012, 12:07:41 PM »
(.../...) One thing I want to add here.  Modular programming has been the accepted way of doing it for many years now.  I wonder if there are people are talking about modular games?  I haven't googled but will probably do that.  As was mentioned early, SimuTrans has an absolutely excellent routing system.  Why should anyone try to reinvent that wheel?

Modules need a common language to speak between them. As Simutrans routing algorithm uses simutrans map definition, any game wanting to reuse it would have to :
(1) reuse Simutrans map definition
or
(2) map its own definition into simutrans algorithm, call the module, & map the answer back to its won model

Both solutions are limitating; the first one because you stay within simutrans's limit, the second one because you spend a lot of time mapping heavy datas.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #64 on: November 14, 2012, 12:37:17 PM »
Seems like #1 would be out, going from 2D to 3D, and I can see where #2 would likely not be worthwhile.  Really though I meant this in more of a rhetorical way because obviously SimuTrans was never designed to have parts of the code ported to other games.

Now that I think about it though, it might certainly pay to look at the logic...

Offline prissi

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Re: My new game
« Reply #65 on: November 14, 2012, 04:35:37 PM »
Well the logic of (for instance passenger generation) is quite independent from the graphics. It just need to what level the hoses in the city are and where the next stop(s) are. That would easily survive going to 3D. Same for the production and routing of factory goods.

Even the routing would survive. Old simutrans version had 16 z-step per height level. The algorithm could hand an arbitary number. It just need a function for next koordinate(s) from current and ned to remember whether it has been already at said location. Would not change by going 3D.

Obviously, if you want to run threaded, you could do all each ship routing, all palnes together, and all rail types in threads, and just synchronize them for level crossings. THat would need to go beyond simutrans, although not much. Same for different multiplayer modes.

Offline isidoro

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Re: My new game
« Reply #66 on: November 14, 2012, 10:56:59 PM »
That's fun, always thought it's exactly the other way round.

I'm with you, sdog.  I'm now with all 3D objects business and it's not much fun...  I'm learning stuff, deciding whether go to OpenGL 3.x or stay with old OpenGL 2.x...  I'd rather be doing the algorithm part...

@Roads: I'd like to keep the goal of the game more to the player's likings.  You can play to try to reach certain population before certain year, or to have more assets (or money, even) than another player, others may want to play for the real pleasure of building working systems (that is the way I like when playing ST, together with some money issues, although I cheat a lot with the Public Service...)...

I'm not for or against the war, in fact.  Simply put, war games are flat and boring to me.  I don't even like chess at all!


Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #67 on: November 15, 2012, 04:57:59 AM »
@Prissi.  This is good to know.  Thank you.  At some point there is no doubt I'll have to download the source code to SimuTrans and get at least a little familiar with it.  That's awhile down the road yet though.  I certainly won't have transportation in my game at release but that will have to come pretty early on.

The thing about the SimuTrans code is, it is a necessity either way.  If I fail to get my game to release, then I will want to do some stuff for ST.

@Isidoro
I think everyone just about cheats at Public Service.  In my last game I was not going to and didn't realize the changes I had made to the river system before I actually began playing carried with it a monthly charge to Public Service...

About the war thing...I'm not a big fan of competition.  I like figuring things out but not solving puzzles.  What I really like is having a set of options and being able to choose and see how those choices play out.  Since this concept is sort of vague, I'll compare it to having several life times and making different choices each time since in our lives we have many options.

This idea of player rewards is a problem and goes to the heart of what people like.  The rewards really need to match the kind of game you are making and maybe that is obvious but maybe not...


Modify:  BTW, I found almost nothing in way of modular games.

Offline Roads

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Re: My new game
« Reply #68 on: December 07, 2012, 05:23:02 PM »
While the process of learning C++ and Blender is on going, so are my thoughts and attempt at documenting the things I want in the game.  One thing is a balance of nature.  I think that it needs a balance and then man is introduced into that environment.  Early on, the game will really only consist of keeping the human population from starving to death without upsetting the balance of nature to point that the animals destroy the human settlement.

I also want to do this in a way that is not linear.  That is, a player can "win" with different strategies or even discover ways that I have not though about.  This seems entirely possible if the spawn rates and food chain of the animals is set up such that it will allow for human consumption introduced into the food chain.  Also I think humans will add food to the chain with agriculture (fields and vegetable gardens.)

At any rate, here is what I'm currently thinking...any comments/thoughts will be greatly appreciated...some items have not been documented yet:

Animals types: fish, mice, snakes, rabbits, ducks, deer, wolves, bears
Special types: cats, dogs

climates: hot/dry; hot/wet; temperate-rainfall/light; temperate-rainfall/medium; temperate-rainfall/heavy; cold/variable between 10F and 40F;
Initially there will be no seasons of the year; no day/night cycles.

A terrain unit can be thought of as an acre.  Terrain fertility is zero to three with zero being sand/rock and three most fertile.
special vegetation: grassland, berries, fruit, nuts
grassland will occur on all climates except hot/dry
fruit trees will occur on all climates except hot/dry and cold
berries occur on temperate climates only

Animal spawn is counted at the beginning of each month according to terrain unit and special vegetation type.  They will only spawn if the terrain unit population is below max supported or there is a special circumstance - an abundance of food above normal.

Mice spawn on every terrain type at different rates depending on terrain and special vegetation.  Snakes spawn at a ratio to mice except they do not spawn on cold terrain type.

Only mice can spawn on terrain improved with a building.  If the home terrain unit of snakes and rabbits becomes 50% improved with buildings, these animals will cease to spawn on that terrain unit.  All other animals will cease to spawn if a single building is erected on their home terrain unit.

Rabbits, ducks and deer spawn on any terrain covered at least partially with grass. 
Wolves  spawn on same terrain units.  Bears spawn on same terrain units and additionally next to water where fish are available.

Insects are assumed, are not documented, and provide food for lowest level animals:  mice, ducks

Insects will provide food as follows:
mice population per, terrain unit, climate:
for non-grassland: 02 - 10 - 04 - 08 - 10 - 02 
if grassland:     n/a - 20 - 10 - 16 - 20 - n/a
if b/f/n:         n/a - 16 - 16 - 24 - 30 - n/a


Snakes eat two mice per month so assuming an adequate food supply, the snake population would be 1 - 5 - 2 - 4 - 5 - 1 etc.  If adequate food supply, the population of each terrain unit will remain constant month after month.  If inadequate food supply, snakes will search the terrain units adjacent to their home unit.  The search will continue until the end of the month or until adequate food is found.  If none found the snake will die and none will be re-spawned the following month.  If food is found outside the home unit the new unit will become the default home for the snake.


The default behavior for snakes is non-aggressive unless hungry.  A hungry snake has a 50% chance of attacking any entity it encounters.  All snakes are poisonous.  Their bite will kill mice, rabbits and ducks.  Deer and wolves have a 25% chance of survival.  Humans and bears have a 50% chance of survival.

rabbit population per terrain unit, climate:
grassland:  01 - 04 - 04 - 10 - 04 - 04 
if b/f/n: n/a...
« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 06:52:46 PM by Roads »