0.6.1 is finally hotfixed to the point of “reasonable-stability”, so it’s time to begin the subjugation of the foolish and pathetic human race. Begin deploying the jetpack-equipped Tasmanian Devils at once!
While that’s happening, we should look at revising the flight plan for 0.7.0. We completed some things in 0.6.1 that were originally to be part of this update, and learned a few things as a result.
We included a lot of the aesthetic work in 0.6.1, but there was one feature we didn’t get to: improving the creatures animation. The animations we have planned will be basic but functional: think more “Minecraft” than “Spore”. They’ll include behaviors for grazing, feeding and fighting, as well as improving the walk cycle.
We’ll be converting the game as a whole from unspecified relative units to metres, kilograms and newtons. Our plan is to use the length of an adult Primum specium as our base scale (1Ps = 1m). This puts the larger trees at around 6m tall, and makes the rover roughly the size of Spirit and Opportunity, which is a nice co-incidence.
Physical Values and Skeletal Analysis
We’ll be defining Density and Volume, which will give us Mass and Weight, which can be converted to translation forces and torques and applied via skeletal analysis. By leveraging the stuff I learned in university and the infinite power of Google, we should be able to achieve much more realistic body-plans than “Stamina = (Base * (Bicep + Tricep) * Size * 2) * Bipedal * Streamlining”
Fences, impassible barriers you can construct to block or isolate populations of creatures.
Climate Control: Heaters, Coolers, Humidifiers and Aridifiers you can place to adjust the temperature/fertility of the local area, rather than the whole map.
Targeted Rover Programming: instruct your rovers to feed or kill creatures based on their genetic distance to a target: either the species average, an exported creature, or a target you design yourself.
Stat Map Editor
Until now I’ve been tweaking the stats on body parts, textures, biomes and trees by editing the data.txt files manually. This is a slow and error prone way of doing things: I can’t see what I’m tweaking, I can’t compare it to other things in the mutation map, etc. To compensate, I’ll be creating a Stat Editor that shows me the physical objects alongside their stats and relationships and allows for tweaks and adjustments in real time. This will mostly be for me, but it might also come in handy for modding.
Most of these items are stepping stones on the way to something greater, most notably the gameplay additions: once those three are in place, I’ll be able to start work on a feature that will form the backbone of gameplay in the future.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to check how the subjugation is going.
“What do you mean “you lost them”? We’re in orbit and they’re loud, violent marsupials, where could they possibly have- they’re in this room with me aren’t they? Dammit, I just know they are. Any second now I’m gonna be mauled.
Aaaanny second now…“