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Author Topic: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools  (Read 1642 times)

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Offline DrSuperGood

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Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« on: December 25, 2017, 11:06:28 PM »
Landscape tools used to offer the ability to change tile climate to water. All tile climate options seem to have been removed in a recent nightly.

This is very problematic as lowering sea terrain without it will not automatically create water. It is needed to create some natural waterways. It is also a realistic tool to have as dredgers and other such tools are used to deepen harbours to support big ships.

To prevent abuse I recommend restricting its use to ground at sea level and touching other sea only.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2018, 11:18:13 PM by DrSuperGood »

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2017, 12:40:44 AM »
This is not a bug: it is an intentional change, as it is not realistic for players to be able to alter tile climates. These tools have been moved to the editor toolstrip, usable only by the public player, as they are map editing tools in the same way as the tools for adding rivers and forests are.

Offline DrSuperGood

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2017, 03:40:35 AM »
So how am I meant to construct artificial harbours then? At least improve the terrain height logic so that the ocean eats up all tiles flat on its level.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2017, 10:20:48 AM »
So how am I meant to construct artificial harbours then? At least improve the terrain height logic so that the ocean eats up all tiles flat on its level.

That would make sense, although that will take some time to do, as I have never looked into the terrain system before. Do you have any idea where in the code that this might be?

Offline R1dO

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2017, 01:14:02 PM »
So how am I meant to construct artificial harbours then? At least improve the terrain height logic so that the ocean eats up all tiles flat on its level.

A nice idea. Although you might need some good additional constraints.
If there are any buildings (houses, factories, stations, etc) on the flatlands automatic flooding might introduce a "disaster" gameplay feature, where parts of the build-up environment is destroyed due to water reclaiming it's territory.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2017, 01:22:36 PM »
A nice idea. Although you might need some good additional constraints.
If there are any buildings (houses, factories, stations, etc) on the flatlands automatic flooding might introduce a "disaster" gameplay feature, where parts of the build-up environment is destroyed due to water reclaiming it's territory.

That would be a considerably more complex mechanic that I am not likely to have time to implement for some years owing to other priorities. It is also problematic if, in a multi-player game, a single player has the ability to damage city buildings.

Offline R1dO

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2017, 01:38:40 PM »
Just to clarify myself.
I'm not requesting the mentioned "feature" (imho it does not belong in the simutrans universe). The post was just a reminder that an ocean eating up flat land might easily lead to such a situation.
I vaguely remember some past discussion about that on the forum, but the closest thing i could find was near the end of this bugreport

Off course it is entirely possible that i misinterpreted the quoted request. I was working under the assumption DrSuperGood wants auto flooding after landscaping, instead of filling up all ponds on map generation.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #7 on: December 26, 2017, 01:42:32 PM »
Ahh, apologies for not understanding.

I think what Dr. Supergood was requesting was something like the way that the ground lowering tool used to work in old versions, in which any individual tile lowered to sea level or below would flood; this would not require a system in which any calculation to check whether other tiles should flood would be necessary, although, now that it is possible to have dry land at sea level, one wonders whether this is sensible or not.

This actually becomes quite a complex issue when given due consideration.

Offline DrSuperGood

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #8 on: December 26, 2017, 07:56:35 PM »
This is why the water terraformation tool was useful as one could correct these problems without having to rely on automatic logic.

The correct approach would be to flood everything at or below sea level with sea that touches sea. However if it damages any property (way, house etc) one is denied the right to terraform that vertex/tile hence there is no need for disaster logic (like OpenTTD has) but instead there is needed prevention logic.

For now I would just be happy with classic Simutrans terrain lowering to water level logic. Currently if one lowers a shoreline it creates dry land at sea level, totally useless for artificial waterways and harbours.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #9 on: December 26, 2017, 10:15:27 PM »
Adding that logic would be somewhat complex - is this something that you are interested in working on? I have quite a long queue of higher priority tasks at present.

Also, one should consider this: in reality, if something needs to be dredged to be created, it is likely to need to be dredged to be maintained; but terraforming in Simutrans never attracts any maintenance costs. There are thus economic implications of this. Consideration needs to be given to whether this is sensible in the circumstances.

Offline DrSuperGood

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2017, 04:16:09 AM »
In real life one only needs to dredge where silt deposits. Some natural water ways are self-maintaining and some even need maintenance of the land-water intersections due to erosion.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2017, 11:08:36 AM »
The trouble is one would then have to have a complex mechanism to simulate which places do and which places do not need regular dredging. The natural water ways, of course, are those that are created by the game on startup. They are self-maintaining presumably because they are, by definition, precisely the ones that exist without human intervention. Waterways created by players would have a significant chance of needing maintenance of some sort, so allowing players to create waterways with no maintenance would unbalance the game.

Offline AP

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2017, 04:37:31 PM »
This is not a bug: it is an intentional change, as it is not realistic for players to be able to alter tile climates.

I disagree with this as a premise.  It think this change is misguided. Changing local areas of terrain is well within the capabilities of companies of the period.

The fens of Lincolnshire and the Somerset levels were drained. Lakes like Meare Pool were removed from the map. Chat Moss was reclaimed, including the notable works by George Stephenson's railway company building across it:



Otmoor was drained by c19th engineers (causing riots). On the isle of wight, Brading Harbour Improvement and Railway Company, who built an embankment across the harbour allowing the estuary on the inland side to be reclaimed.


On a practical level, a particular problem is that the map generator seems to generate terrain at sea  level yet which is not water. This didn't used to happen. It's why docks and Fishing Ports and such seek out sloped tiles, because in the past, water was always bounded by a sloped tile. I suggest fixing it so we no longer have the water stopping arbitrarily on a perfectly flat surface. Otherwise if a flat surface is accepted as a viable thing to exist adjacent to water, there is no logical reason players ought not to be able to create it, and yet still be able to create 'raised' embankments across water, which they can and must be able to do.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2017, 05:01:13 PM by AP »

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2017, 05:06:35 PM »
Drainage of land is not simulated in Simutrans: we have no concept of a fen or a bog that can be drained. The changing of tile climates is different to draining fens and bogs: the tile climate is supposed to represent actual climate, which cannot be changed by civil engineering alone.

It is necessary to remove from ordinary players in online games the ability to change tile climates, as this gives all players the ability to create unrestricted, maintenance-free waterways at all altitudes, capable of conveying the largest ships. It also allows players to create deserts on the tops of mountains, tropics on plateaux and tundra by the sea.

The change of not automatically flooding all tiles at or below a certain level is a change from Standard, introduced with the double/half heights and per tile climates. I have not altered this system. It may well be that the terrain system and map generation could do with a major overhaul at some point, but, without very considerable coding assistance, that is many years away from being seriously contemplated given higher priority projects.

Offline AP

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2017, 05:08:38 PM »
If you make the tools available, that were previously available, it *could* be simulated in simutrans (again)

If there is a cost problem that is a balancing issue. The game is notably unbalanced in that regard.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #15 on: December 27, 2017, 05:14:33 PM »
If you make the tools available, that were previously available, it *could* be simulated in simutrans (again)

I do not understand. How do the existing climate tools simulate drainage of fens and bogs, specifically, and distinguish that from creating deserts up mountains or tundra by the coast?

Quote
If there is a cost problem that is a balancing issue. The game is notably unbalanced in that regard.

The cost balancing issue of allowing players to add lake tiles cannot be fixed by altering the pakset files, as it allows players to create waterways which never need maintenance, and also allows players to create totally unrestricted waterways in all eras and at all altitudes. Allowing this makes the game unbalanceable.

Offline AP

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2017, 06:15:21 PM »
I do not understand. How do the existing climate tools simulate drainage of fens and bogs, specifically, and distinguish that from creating deserts up mountains or tundra by the coast?
By virtue of having a different button available for each different climate type (prior to the change ).  And how the players use them.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #17 on: December 27, 2017, 06:25:10 PM »
By virtue of having a different button available for each different climate type (prior to the change ).  And how the players use them.

I do not understand this explanation - having a button to allow any tile to be changed to any type of climate does not and cannot simulate specifically the draining of fens and bogs, and readily allows players to create deserts up mountains and permanently maintenance free, unrestricted waterways in any era at any altitude.

Offline AP

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2017, 06:34:31 PM »
That's incorrect. There was no single anything to anything button,  rather a specific button to create each type of terrain.

It allowed players to do both what you state, and what I state. Whether and which they chose to do was up to them. It didn't control or restrict them in that regard. Quite why you think they might create desert up mountains I'm unclear, (although I believe there are precedents for that in the Andes) But it certainly did allow reclaiming of land from water,  which was legitimate,  and now does not. Functionality has been removed without a better alternative being provided.

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Bug: Cannot change tile climate using Landscape tools
« Reply #19 on: December 27, 2017, 09:29:35 PM »
That's incorrect. There was no single anything to anything button,  rather a specific button to create each type of terrain.

It allowed players to do both what you state, and what I state. Whether and which they chose to do was up to them. It didn't control or restrict them in that regard. Quite why you think they might create desert up mountains I'm unclear, (although I believe there are precedents for that in the Andes) But it certainly did allow reclaiming of land from water,  which was legitimate,  and now does not. Functionality has been removed without a better alternative being provided.

I have no idea why players might want to put a desert up a mountain - but it is a perverse and defective simulation that allows them to do so. The whole point of the tools in a simulation game is that they allow players to do what it would have been possible for a real transport company to do in reality, and not what was not possible in reality. A tool that indiscriminately allows players to do things that would be possible and things that would not be possible is defective. There is a reason that there are a whole selection of tools in the "editor" section, reserved for the public player, to which section I have added the climate tools, which always ought to have been there in the first place.

There is no simulation or even representation of marsh, fen or bog. Changing the tile climate does not represent drainage. It represents, as I wrote above, changing the actual climate on the tile. That affects what industries and other buildings may be constructed there, as well as the appearance of the tile. It is difficult to think of any legitimate, realistic reason for a player doing this in this way.

The real way in which these tools were used was to create water using the water tile climate tool. As I noted, this in effect allowed the creation of maintenance free unrestricted waterways in any era at any altitude, which renders otiose many if not all of the canals. This cannot be fixed merely by adjusting the cost of altering the terrain, as it does not simulate the maintenance cost of canals, nor the engineering limits in what could be achieved that have very carefully been researched and replicated with the actual canals. This fundamentally breaks the emulation of realism in the construction and maintenance cost of canals, as well as their various restrictions and introduction dates.