The Biome element can be taken in two entirely different directions depending on how you envisage the end product. Aesthetically, it is easy to take it ‘over the top’ and end up creating a headache – especially when you have backers running around asking you to implement everything from the Grand Canyon to rainbow coloured lollipop trees (don’t laugh… I guarantee someone will brings this up lol).
My thoughts are based on maximising the visual practicality of creating the game world, especially from a procedural point of view.
So in no particular order, the following are the 6x distinct outlays I would consider:
The standard world – Hills. Mountains, Plains etc.
Arctic – (been there, done that lol)
In terms of environmental gameplay interaction, this is where things can really be ramped up depending on your thoughts:
The standard world… you are already all over this (awesome job by the way – drooling already)
Jungle – Trade resources of spices, diamonds & gold. Perhaps even tie a ‘medical’ resource into this that effects the skill up speed of the physician skill tree? An option of developing a ‘Merchant’ character would also allow you to implement ‘trade caravans’ that would run between the major settlement and the resources – because of their ‘loot’ they would draw a much higher level of agro from wandering Monsters and make them a real life target (just like the real world).
Swamp – More designed as a pathfinding risk area separating low lying areas of the map. I remember playing the original Populous as a kid on the Amiga 500 and watching as my ‘not so bright’ lemmings walked into a swamp and disappeared as they got sucked under. Aside from this, a higher concentration of Monster spawns could be tied to swamp generation.
Desert – Another pathfinding risk. Any of your wandering people are subjected to 2-3x the amount of normal attrition when crossing these areas – experiencing quicker levels of hunger (thirst) and fatigue.
Arctic – I know you already have plans for this. Perhaps add some area specific resources such as Pelts/Hides for crafting, higher levels of trapping skills etc to encourage players to venture forth into the icy wilderness.
Volcanic Wastelands – Seriously, this has the most scope of the entire lot. These are areas of utter ruin. Barren, cracked earth torn apart by volcanic upheaval. Highly concentrated areas of mineral resources balanced against the highest Monster spawn areas on the entire map. Monsters generated here are down right nasty and tougher than your average kill. It’ll take a real effort to push into these areas and hold off attacks while your miners/merchants extract the resources.
Hopefully something in that list will give you guys some creative thoughts or spark an idea that can add to the richness of Stonehearth. If you like the line of thinking, let me know as I’d be more than happy to help bounce around some creative aspects.
I loved reading the Edge Chronicles when I was younger, so slightly inspired by [urlhttp://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20100117203825/theedgechronicles/images/thumb/5/55/Santaphrax2.png/1000px-Santaphrax2.png] this[/url]
At the very least, perhaps something that allows you to raise your castle into the sky and tether it to the world (that’s one powerful geomancer).
Sky biome would essentially be the same as standard but floating high in the sky castle story? Never heard of it. . Transport would be any of your favourite birds, rather than horses/ boars.
different clothes for each area creates a headache for them and for us. The difference between the biome’s should simply require different play styles. @Darkstone idea Would work were each biome is distinctive, but does not require crazy amounts of work.
Agreed @DisposaDwarf … while the idea of a skantly clad voxel character running around in the snow may prove highly amusing, it adds a degree of unnecessary complexity to the coding without any great advantage. If the additional Biomes can be designed to incorporate specific abilities such as mentioned above, it would allow for a much more ‘realistic’ world where having your followers trail-blaze into a swamp will end in a high degree of tragedy. Obviously areas like swamp would be generated at the lowest levels of the map, where jungles, arctic areas etc could be procedurally created to populate the landscape. It wouldn’t be too complex to tweak area specific bonuses/drawbacks but it would greatly effect your decision making when playing within the environment.
@Darkstone; I think that all of the biomes that you have suggested are great, as can really improve the game in exploration and finding cool landscapes to build huge cities on - the best thing for me. Jungles, swamps, deserts, arctic areas and volcanic wastelands all merged together into an exciting world would be good for the game, as they could perhaps hold more threatening enemies.
However, there is one thing that I have not seen in any media or posts; oceans, or oceancraft. Oceans would be great for the game, because cities could be built on the water, and can create a more exotic, creative feel when playing the game. Also, when exploring, the characters tend to walk quite slow, which can take a while. Therefore, if you could create boats they could let you travel over oceans, and could be a great advantage for cities that had been built on the water, as they have an easy to access mass-transit system to go to other cities when playing co-op and multiplayer.
Moreover, they would be easy to create (maybe, I have only just thought of this idea) as they could be similar to houses, where the player drags over an area where they want to build the object, but this will be in the water. The characters would have to be able to access the boat, so they may be built on land then moved into the water once completed. If so, they would still have to have some kind of dock, which could be created like the houses and the boat itself, and could pull in the boat with ropes.
I hope that you like my ocean idea, and if the team working on StoneHearth liked it too, I would explode (joking).
Good idea @EpicDwarf - if players could experience a tropical island paradise city whilst playing the game, it would make it a much calmer game. Also, the biome they are in could change the building - e.g. Tropical island houses are made of bamboo and could be on stilts. This way, you could create a virtual holiday home, and have it attacked by an army of orcs. It’s up to the player, I guess - perhaps the houses could have an option for their style - normal for all biomes, and on all biomes other than standard plains, then there could be an additional building type.
i do like the idea of having people wearing winter cloths during winter. then we could have tailors that could make cloths depending on the season. and people will go and get those cloths during winter time. this would also make people that get a tailor can have people work more efficiently during winter, because who wants to go out and cut wood wearing juts a shirt in the middle of winter. also people would stay close to sources of heat, like people making camp fires, and then in houses have fireplaces were they would huddle up during night time and winters. now not saying that people would die during winter but simply have a reason to be lazy, also soldiers could have winter cloaks to move faster in winter landscapes :3
I do know in the kickstarter countdown vid they did mention that heating (as in fireplaces) are a ‘rock’, its something they do want to do but it’ll probably be after 1st release, and I agree, heating in winter would be an awesome idea then we wold have an extra purpose for mammoths as they could give wool that makes warmer clothes. And the reverse could be true too, if they get too warm without something like a well they work slower as they’re thirsty
Has anyone ever played blockheads for iOS? It’s not the best game in the world, but (even if it is 2D) the good thing about it was it has a spherical/circular world where snow biomes would be in the north/south and deserts would be at the equator. I would like this to also occur in this game whereby is large, but spherical & biomes are relavent.
Anyone played Minecraft before and had jungle lakes, snow biomes & deserts all colliding, makes no sense.