[MUD-Dev] Wilderness

David Loeser daklozar at home.com
Tue Aug 7 21:58:21 New Zealand Standard Time 2001

> From: Daniel.Harman at barclayscapital.com
>> From: Koster, Raph [mailto:rkoster at verant.com]
>>> From: Brian Hook

>>> When I have the time I want to get around to writing a massive
>>> space exploration game.

>>> The ultimate goal, at least for planetary content creation, is
>>> that there are worlds based off a set of random number seeds
>>> which determine the details of that world (at least in terms of
>>> topography, climate, etc.).  These worlds will have never
>>> existed completely on anyone's systems -- they're just random
>>> number seeds -- and the first explorers will be, literally, the
>>> first people to ever see them.  Even the game developers have
>>> never seen them.  Those first few player maps will be the real
>>> maps.

>> That was Privateer Online.

> Perhaps, but thats how Elite did all of its planets too!

> Ok so you couldn't explore them, but all the socio-economic info,
> locations and names were seeded. On computers with 32k memory, it
> was a necessity of course. Sometimes I wish computers evolved less
> quickly so that people would have a chance to display some of the
> ingenuity bred of pushing an environment beyond expectations. I
> guess thats solely the domain of consoles now though.

> I miss my Amiga.

Ah, as do I. Those were the days indeed.

To continue your thoughts concerning Elites method of
creating/modeling the universe, I have been reading Infinite Game
Universes: Mathematical Techniques by Guy W. Lecky-Thompson and
found the Preface of the book a welcomed surprise. It seems that the
inspiration for his writing the book came from his fascination with
the methods Braben and Bell (the authors of Elite) used to "map" the
universe in 32K of memory.

I tend to think that technology didn't eliminate the possible use of
such techniques in games, moreover programmer and designers alike
have determined it easier to use the extra storage capacity of
modern systems than to construct magnificent algorithms to simulate
worlds. I consider myself "old school" with respect to squeezing
every last bit out of my code... but I must admit that not having to
do this for a very long time; you do become algorithmically
lazy. This book is a welcome read (so far, I'm starting chapter 3).

As for the central topic of this thread, I agree with Brian Hook and
I proudly proclaim that I am an Explorer.

David "Dak Lozar" Loeser

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