Big bright eyed ideas I know, but anyway ... one of the things people often request is that they wish to meet people on their journey, merchants travelling the roads .... bandits migrating to good picking grounds, refugees fleeing battles, other adventurers, etc etc. The problem mentioned is it would be near impossible to keep all areas loaded and tracking the individual NPC's within them.
This lead me to an idea and wonder how workable it might be to you guys. The immediate region (think of Minecraft 'chunks') are loaded around the player to varying degrees, I'll call this the 'Adventure Environment', its where you run, fight, ride, talk to NPC's and fall off waterfalls and what not. In addition the game generates what I'll call the 'World Environment' which does a number of things ... one it provides a guide of what areas will be that haven't generated in the Adventure Environment, secondly it could also act as the world map ... and thirdly hidden behind the scenes for the most part it will track important 'parties' in the world ... rather than fully generate everything about these parties it will be more like 'Douglas the Brave + 6 Retainers + 2 Priests + 1 Misc: Diplomatic Mission to Y,X: Currently at Y,X). Douglas and his party are than only generated as individual entities when they are in the same Adventure Environ as the player.
Leading on from this is the idea of 'becoming King/Queen' and beginning to play more of a civ game ... at which point some of these map entities become visible, you send a merchant caravan to the Kingdom of Jix and you can see its progress across the overworld map. In a way I imagine it abit like a simplified version of civilization or Total Wars turnbased mode or somewhat like Mount and Blades overworld map but occuring as you events take place during your adventures in the world.
Ambitious but I was curious if this might be a good way to pull off the world being 'lively' and things happening outside of the players immediate scope.
Edit: As an extra, if anyones ever played the failed Lords of Midnight 3 that may also give an idea of what I'm thinking.
Edited by All Names Taken, 15 October 2012 - 12:16 AM.