Locks - Mod suggestion for upcoming alphas?

Just a quick sketch of something I’ve always loved to look at. Hope when boats make it in the game (Alpha 20? :stuck_out_tongue: ) these may be built:

For those of you who don’t know what this is, its basically a water-powered boat lift. You’ll see them in many canals. They work as follows:

Going downstream:
Boat reaches lock, hopefully both doors are closed. This raises the water level. Boat enters the middle segment, the door closes behind it. Water is allowed to leak out from the other door, downstream, and the water level drops. That door can then be opened to let the boat out.

Going upstream:
Boat reaches lock, hopefully the first door is opened and the water level is low. Boat enters middle segment, door is closed behind it. Water level rises. The other door may now be opened, boat has risen a few meters without any hard labour!

Now we wait for the next alpha…


Great Idea! But i think thas only necassary if we get boats :wink:


I have plans to add hydro dams for Zulser - so while doing that I’ll probably stumble upon a proper way to do something like that.

It’s certainly something I want to do. I love this kind of stuff.


A cool idea, but we’ll need water to function in a realistic volume-based way before these can work. Looking at the videos we’ve been offered so far, water seems to just fill any adjacent space without actually spreading out–it’s essentially creating water out of nothing.

If locks get added before water realistically floods out without being infinite, we could accidentally flood our entire world (up to the initial Y-height of the starting water). There was issues with this regarding liquids in the basic, more primitive versions of Minecraft:

(Apologies for the obnoxious music in the video, but this was as easy example to find)

Although, locks could be an early way to get water to higher elevations. And let’s be honest, flooding a world in Stonehearth would be pretty fun to try.


Nice! Your work is always commendable, I’m looking forward to see what you can do!

I fully agree. Based on what little we’ve seen from the development vids and what’s been revealed on the forums, the water does behave peculiarly. Hopefully it’ll be more practical by the time it’s released.

Unfortunately, they don’t raise water. It moves downstream at all times. The lock acts as a ‘trap’ to capture the water at a further point, creating the rise within the middle segment.


Unless this changed, water is volume based. It will try to evenly spread out and upon filling a platform completely, it will start to go up - just like real water does.

If 1 unit of water flows down a waterfall, it means that at the top there’s 1 unit less and at the bottom 1 unit more. So water is finite, volume based and overall pretty cool.

For any sort of dam, you would need to do let the water flow “through” it. That means that at the top, as soon as the level reaches, say, 95%, you subtract 1 unit of water and add it at the bottom of the dam. Alternatively, you could have one block that lets water through - so you would have some sort of cool fancy waterfall.

Keep in mind that unless you are developing water, you likely don’t care for its function a lot. In tests, I would want to see what water can do and how it acts - I don’t want to wait two hours.

If you want to see what the water looks like, I’ve made a little test world with three plateaus. Each plateau has steps, at the top is a little source, as soon as the water reaches the bottom layer it’s stopping the source. Technically, it could simply constantly drain water, but I haven’t looked into the hydrology service enough to make it proper (without the water level twitching like mad).

So: I’m fairly sure it’s possible as soon as water has been released.


That didn’t seem to be the case when Tom was showcasing dynamic water a few streams back (footage of it was also briefly used in the Alpha trailer)–he dug an extensively long canal, and the height of the original pond didn’t seem to decrease once the water was able to flow out (the canal only seemed to rise to meet the original y-height of the pond’s water).

If this isn’t the case and water does deplete units from the starting region as it spreads out, then all the better. No need for concern about accidentally flooding your world to oblivion. (Looking back at the footage, the initial pool was particularly large, and there may have been some change in volume. It’s difficult to gauge clearly.)


As I’ve said, there’s two possible explanations:

  • The pool is really large, therefore that little dent hardly matters.
  • It’s a debugging tool, it’s filling the trench immediately to avoid having CPU intensive filling operations (Tom is more of an aesthetics guy after all - like I’ve said, although it’s amazing to see the water replenishing all, you kind of got the idea of it after a few times.)
  • The pool isn’t really large, but it’s replenishing very fast.
  • The pool is a “lake” (still water) that hasn’t been in the release so far. It could be some sort of semi-infinite water source (“I keep my level no mater how far you dig”)

I mean, let’s face it, he dug the canal instantaneously too, but we all know that digging is implemented. The water thing is probably tied to the instamine config parameter too.

Edit: Another explanation which just came to my mind - if water was really flowing while showing off trenches and it was dug normally, there’s a chance that units would need to swim… Something that they can’t do yet, and probably won’t for a while.