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Lezbein

Newbie lost in space game

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Where should I go if I have this experimental game idea? I imagine a space ship that can freely fly around an entire planet; leave the planet, go to another planet, land, get out on foot, shoot aliens, etc and do it all over again. All in a seamless game play feel. I now I'm asking for a lot. What area should I look into? I was thinking of asking MMO experts, since they would have the most ideas on games at large scales. In this case planetary scale. No one has ever done this before -I'm quite sure I'm not the only one who thought of it- so is it possible? What games come close to this idea?

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I'm going to open up with this question, because it needs to be asked. What is your programming experience?

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It is exceedingly difficult to accomplish from a programming perspective, and building an entire planet worth of art that will more than likely never be seen is not a good ROI.

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Wasn't this the whole idea behind the Battlecruiser and Universal Combat games?

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Quote:
Original post by stonemetal
It is exceedingly difficult to accomplish from a programming perspective, and building an entire planet worth of art that will more than likely never be seen is not a good ROI.


Procedural content, though, makes this possible. cf The highly impressive Infinity

Note: Possible. Not easy.

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Thanks on the info.

The Infinity web site mentioned on procedural techniques...
"Procedural universe: procedural programming is a technique to let the computer generate the game universe on-the-fly, in real-time on request, rather than manually building everything. Because of this, the generated universe can be absolutely huge. In Infinity, billions of worlds, most of them never explored by any player, are awaiting the adventurous soul."

Can anyone elaborate on this idea any more? Explaining a direct example,like how would the program calculate a mountain from a far then near? Or how would a seem less entry from space into the planet's atmosphere -through the clouds then to the the ground- all work?

My experince level in programming is like 0. I have done some minor programming before in a diff/ language. It's a pretty simplistic language. An arrow draws out lines for you and you give coordinates to which way it can go. Some commands like Set input Y=15, so the arrow moves on the Y axis 15 units. I got some experince in 3D/2D, lightwave, photoshop, illustrator.


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Quote:
Original post by Lezbein
Can anyone elaborate on this idea any more? Explaining a direct example,like how would the program calculate a mountain from a far then near? Or how would a seem less entry from space into the planet's atmosphere -through the clouds then to the the ground- all work?


Check out fractals and Perlin noise.

Fractal
Fractal Landscape
Perlin Noise

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Quote:
Original post by Lezbein

My experince level in programming is like 0. I have done some minor programming before in a diff/ language. It's a pretty simplistic language. An arrow draws out lines for you and you give coordinates to which way it can go. Some commands like Set input Y=15, so the arrow moves on the Y axis 15 units.



Then step 1 is either
(*) Learn to program
or
(*) Find some programmers to make your game for you

I'll go out on a limb and assume you don't have the spare money to hire a team of developers, so that puts you in the position of needing to learn to program.

So from here I think the best next step is for you to go find a good book or tutorial on a programming language. C++/C#/Python are probably along the lines of what you'd want to be looking at, there are other languages you could consider too like Java, and honestly at the beginning of your programming experience it doesn't matter too much which language you pick, as all the most ubiquitous languages will teach the same underlying concepts in the beginning stages.

I am led to believe however that Python and C# are more beginner friendly than C++.

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Your right on the money issue. But IDK if I have the mind for programming. I tried learning French and I was very bad, very confused. I know programming is a language too and I feel I'll be overwhelmed. C++/C#/etc is more complex than French I would say. What you think?

Also the Infinity web site mentioned their a small independent company. So how many programmers could they have?

Is there another way to get programmers? Team up w/ people that want to make games and broke too? Ever seen "Creating Kaos?" A guy w/ like 3 or 4 people that made a MMO demo. I would like this game to start off as a demo too. I've recall some game a while ago made strictly 3D animations of the game play and used this to sell the idea to game companies. There's gotta be more ways.

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Learning to program requires more skills in math than in learning languages. True, you need to learn the syntax but it might be better compared to learning how to construct a building. There's the architecture, the planning, deciding on ways to achieve a certain task (e.g. deciding on algorithms used), learning how to build the walls (code the algorithms), ...

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