World Generation (with a seque into building)

Hi guys,

Question for @tom and/or @sdee

It’s been ages since the pre-Alpha days (I’m a KS backer) so I had forgotten how the world looked in some of the pre-Alpha days. The video on http://stonehearth.net/media/, and especially screenshots like:

http://stonehearth.net/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/village.jpg

show that at one point, the world generator made much more contoured land. Not only the single-voxel height changes and interesting hills etc, but the awesome ground color gradients as well. Don’t get me wrong - I love the multi-level look that we presently have, but the cliffs etc are a lot more harsh and the world presently feels a lot “blockier” than it looks in this earlier stuff. Are there plans to go back to this kind of look later in development? Because I REALLY like it.

As a side note, in the pre-alpha video it appears that multistory buildings and roofs are already working, but it took ages in the Alpha before roofs worked and we still can’t build multi-story without doing it in tricksyhacky ways. How come there appears to have been a backwards step in development around building? Did you end up having to rewrite the code for building or something?

Again: not complaining - just asking! :smile:

Thanks,
Brian.

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Here is a road map to what they are/will be working on.

http://stonehearth.net/roadmap/

It might help :slight_smile:

Yes, I’m well aware of the roadmap, but it doesn’t mention “look and feel”. If anything, it says that above ground is done, but @tom mentioned in a livestream a while back that another pass on world generation is planned for some time in the next 3-4 alphas, and I am wondering if it is going to head back towards this kind of look, or is the “giant steps” of land contour we presently have the new “official” look of Stonehearth.

I really like this “older” look of the land, is all :smile:

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In fact, it occurs to me that when water comes in Alpha 10 (maybe) this kind of land generation may, in fact, be a lot more desirable? I was wondering how rivers etc were going to work when the land is chopped up into large perfectly flat plains and sudden high cliffs. Surely, it would be easier to calculate river routes and locations of lakes and such in a more contoured environment such as in the screenshot above - every time the land drops a voxel in height any river following it would curve towards the closest next level drop as that’s analogously the steeper path.

Or am I way off base, @tom/@sdee?

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Honestly, I love having terraced land. I get a bit tired of leveling land in games before I can build on it and terraces suit me just fine in that regard. In fact, I generate terraced land on purpose when I’m playing Gnomoria. If someone wants to make a mod that changes the worldgen, I figure that there’ll even be a demand for it by people who want a more natural look. Right now I’d rather focus on building my little town/castle and making my Hearthlings use beds and chairs like civilized folk do.

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A quick note about how the buildings looked:
I would assume the buildings were hard coded into the game and not built in game. By hard coded I mean they made the model and just kinda forced them into the game…
And about the water, the water can still flow from high to low, there will just be awesome looking waterfalls and waterfall ponds on/under the cliffs.

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i am sure that world generation will continue to evolve (if for no other reason, than the fact that we should see “limitless” maps at some point)… keep in mind though, that lots of what we saw in these very early videos and screenshots were somewhat staged…

lots of handcrafted effects were shown long before the backend systems were developed that would actually produce these things in game…

having said all that, I agree that the aesthetic in these early images is very appealing, and I wouldn’t be upset to see the world generation revert back to this look and feel… :+1:

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Watch the video on the page I linked :smile:

I know, right? It’s gorgeous! As I said above, I don’t dislike the terraced sharpworld we presently have at all, but man-oh-man I really love the look of the land in those screenshots and video.

The building and mining tools, as well as the slice view mode, will need a significant overhaul before terrain like this will work well, but I’m sure that’s coming soon.

That said, I’ve grown quite fond of terraces. Perhaps when biomes are more fully implemented [because I doubt that the current three biomes are enough for an infinite world], we could see some smooth biomes along with the terraced ones. I’d really like to build along that border: flat terrain to build on, but an awesome background.

I’m glad that both the old terrain and the terraced terrain have their fans. :slight_smile: We really like the terraced terrain for now but we will probably continue to work on making it look less monochromatic. :wink: Right now everything is very green.

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Just make the flat biomes a plains biomes to please both sides of the argument

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Is there any reason we can’t have both? I mean aside from “more work” obviously, but in the real world we have a very wide range of environments. Using something like Minecraft’s biomes, you should be able to get regions with lots of sheer cliffs and such, or as in the OP, some nice smooth areas.

After all, Earth has both types in abundance:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/89/Rolling_hills_of_the_Southern_Uplands_-geograph.org.uk-_221791.jpg



As for the monochromatic side of things, Minecraft tints its grass using something like this:

Doing something like that (perhaps with further tinting around water sources or near trees etc?) would certainly break up the monochromatic grasslands :slight_smile: .

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Way ahead of you, @Teleros :wink:

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Been wondering about the difference between the prototype videos/screenshots on http://stonehearth.net/media/ and how the game is now, I recall a post like this but can’t find it, but, Why was the world coloration altered? I liked the softer looking world gen colors in the prototypes over what there is now, will they go back to that later?

He never actually did a multi story building. But yeah the roofing is definately not how it is now. I’m sure there was something in their programming that helped the codebase that caused this “step back” however knowing Radiant they’re going to make sure we have the multi-story abilities…i’m sure of it.

Otherwise we have a good modding community :wink:

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Weird, I looked at that exact picture this afternoon and decided re-make this in Alpha 8.

I love both terrains, I feel the mining tool could possibly have a option to take of 1 row at a time too, So we could make nice designs, and maybe the option to mine 1 block at a time. But yeah, I too have become to like the current terrain, Plus with the amount that is being added we’ll probably be lucky to see the terrain in a few alpha’s :wink:

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If they do both, I would rather have a terraces, and nonterraced option we can choose from at world generation, since I think the non terraced looks pretty awful.

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great idea! :smile:

[quote=“Communistpenguin, post:18, topic:10770”]
since I think the non terraced looks pretty awful.
[/quote] :scream: :scream_cat:

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The “old” terrain style looks better, wwwwwaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyy better.
But building on it would kill me … flat this raise that, there is no option for this atm too.

A combined landscape would be awesome or options for toggling.

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