Ideas for the I-NOVAE engine not yet covered

Well I can definitively tell you that if that does turn out to be true it will be the first time I have ever been wrong about anything.

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It happens to us all. I would be elated to discover that IA was running with community estimates, however. Either that, or just scrap Oort clouds. Particularly if I get my way (hah – I love how I make it sound like I have a say) on warp speeds and travel times, Oort clouds may be a colossal waste of time.

I dunno…it might be worth it to hide valuable ores and such out there. We both know someone’s gonna go looking for Oort Clouds at some point. I think they should be rewarded if they’re willing to invest the time.

Assuming that Oort Clouds are even added in the first place, that is.

Let’s not confuse the engine with the game.
I too hope that in Infinity, intra-system speeds will be slowish (around 10 million km/s) so getting from Earth to the Oort cloud would take about 8 and a half hours! (For comparison, getting to the outer edge of the Kuiper belt at that speed would take 12 minutes.)

However, just because in Infinity it might be a waste of time, that doesn’t mean it might not be a valuable feature to another project that used the engine.

Then, what about an inner Oort cloud ?
Its existence has yet to be confirmed, but as it wouldn’t be Sol system anyway, it would have a place in the engine (independently of its gameplay interest).

Interesting. Finding a Mars sized Object so far from its star would be interesting. Question though: Given the strange orbit the object in the article has, how far apart would be objects in that hypothetical inner cloud?

Seems like it’s a first for you then :slight_smile:

Yeah, I did mention that 1 LY cube limit on the old forums.

More specifically, I was talking about the galaxy generation. It is split into a massive grid where the lowest element is a cube of 1 LY per side. When a star system gets generated, it is within this 1 LY cube. Basically, the local star system you’re currently in ( which can include multiple stars ) get rendered as “real” objects, whereas all the galaxy stars outside of the local star system get rendered into the background starfield.

Regarding the far-distance objects such as the Oort cloud, I don’t think we’ll ever implement them. They’re so far away that our FP64 calculations might start to fall appart, and they’re so spread out that flying there to find a visible asteroid would be less likely than winning the lottery.

Closer belts, such as the one between Earth and Mars, might be possible though. I recall one time I actually did implement it a few years ago, since it’s just a variation of the planetary rings code, except on a much bigger area. The results were quite disappointing if I remember well, since even in that case, the density of asteroids and dust was very low.

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Damn I thought such belts were a definite on the todo list. Sad face. Hope you can get them working nicely for the MMO!

That’s expected for a realistic, mature debris belt, though. I mean, no, it may not make for the most exciting, Millennium Falcon in the Asteroid Field kind of gameplay, but it’s true to life. For asteroids ~100m across or larger, it’s estimated that the average distance between rocks is on the order of 1 million km.


Even if it isn’t Star Wars and as exciting as the planetary ring I would like to see it.

I just want to see a real Asteroid Belt in a game. Want to fly between two Asteroid bases and see the void in a relatively densely populated part of a solar system. Bringing the extremes to the screen by showing the middle grounds … something like this.

That’s why I also like Jovian Systems.

Teach me to add “in this context”-disclaimers to my posts… :stuck_out_tongue:

As far as asteroid belts go, I can see how making realistically spaced ones an interesting part of Battlescape gameplay would be somewhat difficult, so probably not worth implementing any time soon (unless as a bit of recreational programming) but if and when the gameplay progress to MMO-like levels I’d imagine they become more interesting, gameplay-wise, and I’d quite like them to be there just for the heck of it.


Was the only significant issue the sparsity of the asteroids?
It’s presumably not going to be as simple as just increasing a coefficient in an algorithm but isn’t half the joy of procedural generation that tweaking the density would be relatively inexpensive?

I’d rather have a realistically sparse asteroid belt than none at all. From what I’ve read it seems they would be common in solar systems with planets.

Well the question is, do you want a feature that takes some cpu cycles ( not that much but still, some computations have to be done, like 5% FPS ? ) for such a low chance to see anything interesting on screen ? Yeah, you could find a random asteroid if you flew in space for a couple hours. That’s already assuming we’ve increased the density a million times compared to what would be “realistic”.

Ok when you put it like that it doesn’t sound like there’d be much point implementing it.

The ‘bare’ version of I:B would probably not need it ; maybe a few asteroids as points of action for the sake of variety, but not a full belt.
An ‘full stretch goals’ advanced version of I:B may benefit from those, though, for mining, hiding putting small stations all around… Not mandatory, but there is probably some interesting gameplay to be had with countless asteroids in regions of the system. Would it be worth the performance hit and implementation time? Hard to tell, but it’s possible.

In any case, there are probably systems without asteroid belt, and having the system(s) of I:B not having those would be OK.
It may be a good idea to tie it in with a stretch goal that would actually make it interesting gameplay-wise. I’d suspect that asteroid belts sell, even if it’s not actually the most rational of things.

For the galactic engine, though, they would be expected, though. But that’s a distant concern anyway.

BTW, would the performance hit depend on the asteroid field density? Would a Sol-like asteroid belt consume less? Would a Star Wars-like dense protostar belt be possible?
And if you decide to implement it at some point later, would it be a big undertaking? Would modders be able to create one by using the planetary ring system?

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Well without a scanner of some sort it would be kinda ridicolus.

But it’s the same with hitting neptune from this distance. If you don’t know where to go, finding a planet is as dificult as finding an Asteroid in an Solar Asteroid Belt (when you know where the boundaries of the belt are).

All just guessing though.

Asteroid belt would be a nice bit of shiny for the system map, if a little sparse/boring up close.

Well, ye know what they say: You never know if you can make an engine capable of seamless interplanetary travel until you try. What this topic needs isn’t feasibility but originality.

That doesn’t compute. What this topic is is a suggestion in the I-N forum. So what is the point of an idea that could not possibly be part of I-N? And determining what could or couldn’t be in I-N, or what the boundary is between the two, might be blurry. But it isn’t exclusively the dev team’s purview. Common sense still applies.

The calcs that determine whether something is feasible or not may be simple or complicated, and depend on known or proprietary info, but some things are definitely negligibly likely to be feasible. Decoherence because of time travel - unfeasible in a MP game. Micro detailed planetary weather system - this one is clearly not feasible if you do look around a little about (for instance) global warming modeling and how expensive (CPU) it is on its own, never mind shoe-horned into “our” game engine’s performance budget. That’s not the same thing at all as mere layers of, or a simple model of atmospheric density gradient.

Topic needs not originality but feasible originality.

[quote=“INovaeFlavien, post:33, topic:347”]
do you want a feature that takes some cpu cycles ( not that much but still, some computations have to be done, like 5% FPS ? ) for such a low chance to see anything interesting on screen ?
[/quote]Will players really care about mudslides enough to give up 5%? That’s not specific question but demonstration of the principle I’m arguing. The sort of ideas that the OP is brainstorming and asking others to brainstorm for must satisfy this cost/benefit need. It’s great that the engine’s scale frees people’s imagination from what’s become a cramped status quo… But still we’re talking about a limited budget. And more likely than not, the space combat part of the game will reward fluid FPS. Realistic exploding ship guts physics (or credible enough appearance of) are probably gonna be more satisfying than mudslides for most players.

And again I don’t have a broom up my ass about this. I’d personally love to e.g. use large mass of snow and/or ice on valley mountainside to trigger avalanche against a ship I’m dogfighting. But is it feasible?

As long as we’ve got such limited hardware, the tradeoff must be part of said brainstorming, even if you only tack it on at the end as a caveat, so that admittedly less or not feasible ideas still are shared with others that they might spark some other more feasible ideas.

Don’t be silly, this is science.

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Common sense says heavy objects fall faster then lite ones.