Procedural game mechanics

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texmex
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Procedural game mechanics

by texmex » Wed Jan 30, 2019 20:23

I’ve been thinking about how to expand on the procedural features of a voxel game. Currently in Minetest games, only the world is procedurally generated. But what if other features of a world was generated in similar fashion and based on the same seed? I can think of:
  • procedurally generated ore types, (name, color, rarity etc). There’s a mod by Piezo doing something like this already.
  • depending on what ores become available in a world, specific tools may become available or not included at all
  • ”tech tree”, (different paths to more advanced tools and nodes every seed)
  • RPG elements, (classes and skill advancement takes a different form each seed)
  • Protection schemes may vary between a few types (only owned land is diggable, everything is diggable, nodes are diggable in company of other player, or otherwise)

This way players get replayability not only in new worlds available at each seed but the whole game experience as well.

Thoughts?
 

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Re: Procedural game mechanics

by voxelproof » Fri Feb 01, 2019 11:24

texmex wrote:I’ve been thinking about how to expand on the procedural features of a voxel game. Currently in Minetest games, only the world is procedurally generated. But what if other features of a world was generated in similar fashion and based on the same seed? I can think of:
  • procedurally generated ore types, (name, color, rarity etc). There’s a mod by Piezo doing something like this already.
  • depending on what ores become available in a world, specific tools may become available or not included at all
  • ”tech tree”, (different paths to more advanced tools and nodes every seed)
  • RPG elements, (classes and skill advancement takes a different form each seed)
  • Protection schemes may vary between a few types (only owned land is diggable, everything is diggable, nodes are diggable in company of other player, or otherwise)

This way players get replayability not only in new worlds available at each seed but the whole game experience as well.

Thoughts?


Theoretically of course it's possible, however when you go into details it needs quite a bit of work to avoid situation when most procedurally generated paths of growing complexity of game mechanics dissolve into ridiculous or boring content. I was considering this and from my point of view it would be more feasible to start with the simplest features (like slightly different shapes of plants and trees). As far as ores are concerned it would be very interesting to make their distribution more diverse and to make them appear in large deposits or layers, as it is in real world, but this is kinda Gael de Sailly's domain ;)
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Re: Procedural game mechanics

by texmex » Fri Feb 01, 2019 13:52

I guess that the percieved procedurality may in a lot of cases be substituted with simply using the map seed for base of randomization instead of something else (usually people use os.time() to generate a more truly random result). In some cases it will simply be a matter of choosing A or B on a advancement tree.
 

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Re: Procedural game mechanics

by voxelproof » Sat Feb 02, 2019 14:31

texmex wrote:I guess that the percieved procedurality may in a lot of cases be substituted with simply using the map seed for base of randomization instead of something else (usually people use os.time() to generate a more truly random result). In some cases it will simply be a matter of choosing A or B on a advancement tree.


Oh, I get the idea. On this highest level it would be very easy to implement, e.g. even seeds generate worlds with aggresive mobs and a few first digits of the seed could be used to choose frequency of spawn of particular monsters. I was thinking more about internal complexity of the game, when e.g. distribution of minerals is derived from the terrain generation, behaviour of npc's depends on the biome or the level of sunlight and so on.
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