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Development screenshot

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This screenshot is STRICTLY to show the growing vegetation, it has no artistic value, and as you can see the screenshot looks bad because I do all my tests in a map corner.
You can also notice that the client looks exactly like the Eternal Lands one, we didn't bother to change the interface, or even the window title.

Anyway, two palm seeds are manually added at server startup. Then the palms grow, drop their seeds, then other baby palms spring to life. In this particular case, to make the testing easier, the palms drop their seeds in their early life (after they change from 'baby' to 'toddler'). After they drop their seeds once, they won't drop them again, to avoid overcrowding.
They also try to keep a configurable distance from plants of their own type, to avoid trees being one in another.
The big yellow tree there is not a dynamic piece of vegetation, it was added with the map editor for some testing purposes (unrelated to the vegetation).

Today I got my new laptop, so I am busy trying to install Gentoo on it. I tried to install FreeBSD, but there are some issues with KDE not starting properly, and now I am trying Gentoo (because everyone recommanded it to me).
Hopefully, tomorrow I will be able to resume the work for BM, and keep you updated.
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Noting your response to my previous comment, I would like to throw a suggestion.

After you have all the tree data formalized, you could save all the variables to the client files, and have that world data permanently available to the client.

It would mean you couldn't dynamically change the default growth rate of the trees, but really, how often are you going to need to change that?

As for the soil nutrients affecting tree growth, there are two issues: either the nutrients only affect the tree's growth, in which case it would be just as easy to enclose a world-nutrient file along with the client files; or the nutrients are variable and used by other actions from the player as well, in which case you're sending data to the client anyways - However, I'm pretty sure that's not what you're doing.

Just offering a friendly and, hopefully, helpful comment.

Good luck.

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The problem is that this is NOT a single player game. Your suggestions won't work because:
1. The nutrients ARE dynamical, and the client has no way in hell to know the nutrients in the soil, because there are a lot of actions that can change them, and most of the actions not only that do not depend on the player, but are random.
2. The plants growth has a random factor as well.
3. Sending the nutrients list for each tile to the clients is a no-no. Not only this would greatly increase the bandwidth, but it would also allow all kind of cheating.
4. The client has no idea how much time passed on the server. For example, you might get disconnected, and when you reconnect a tree was replaced with some other tree, or with the same type of tree
(maybe it was cut by someone, and replanted).

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Alright, I guess it's not worth it then. Sorry about being persistant - you of all people should know that's the mindset of all programmers, heh.

I guess I should resign to the fact that I don't have enough information about the whole project to offer ideas - I was keeping in mind that it's an online game, but I was assuming certain factors because I haven't coded the game.

Hope everything works out for you!

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It's ok.
Anyway, like I said before, having plants that grow smoothly is nice, but having lower bandwidth requirements is nicer. That way, even dial up people might be able to play (for the time being, I don't know how well it would work on Dial Up).

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Bushes might have a better effect with it then palm trees [smile].... Or shrubbery, whatever the case may be.

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Yeah, I just picked a random tree, withiout cariing about it's type and so. Besides, when you test stuff, it's best to tedt with the most unsuitable object, some sort of a worst case scenario.

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