More/ larger galaxies

Discussion and information relevant to creating special missions, new ships, skins etc.

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Zireael
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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Zireael »

Nice map Zireal. Is the rest of the frontier map based on our real-life galaxy???
Partially. The sectors 0,0 and some more immediately around have some real-life stars (Sol, Barnard's Star, Delta Pavonis, Beta Hydri, some stars from Luyten catalogue).

Some more real-life stars can also be found further away (info from Daniel Sevo's page):
System Name Coordinates Comment
Aldebaran (6), (4)
Antares (-39), (-34)
Betelgeuse (59), (14)
Beta Lyrae (-146), (85) The famous "Contact Binary" star that crashes the game :)
Canopus (6), (-6)
Hadar (-6), (-40) Actually has 3 planets with indigenous life!
Polaris (0), (76) (Northern star)
Rigel (92), (6)
Spica (-4), (-17)
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Dumbell Nebula (-72), (38) Nebula
Pleiades (32), (32) Star Cluster

I think some more stars are in (Sigma Draconis, Epsilon Eridani) but the rest is procedurally generated.

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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Commander McLane »

I feel compelled to put in a small reminder:

Elite ≠ Frontier

And Oolite is a recreation of/spiritual successor to Elite.

Zireael
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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Zireael »

Commander McLane wrote:I feel compelled to put in a small reminder:

Elite ≠ Frontier

And Oolite is a recreation of/spiritual successor to Elite.
I know, but why not use the interesting parts of Frontier? The equipment system, the equipment being transferrable between ships for the most part, more cargo, import/export, differing illegal goods, stats on the system (star type, temperature etc.), the bigger galaxy...

For me, the parts that sucked were: bugs, blue space and Newtonian physics.

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Redspear
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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Redspear »

Commander McLane wrote:I feel compelled to put in a small reminder:

Elite ≠ Frontier

And Oolite is a recreation of/spiritual successor to Elite.
Damn fine point Sir!

I never really played Frontier but I understand that it was both a different direction and a disappointment for many here...

So whilst Zireael's map is interesting, IF any of the galaxies were to be expanded then then turning them into the Frontier galaxy is perhaps not the way to go.

I agree with Zireael however, that we could take inspiration from it.
Whether that's from equipment, galaxy size or the ships that we chose to fly, it's worth looking at.

Maybe all this kind if stuff should be by oxp, if at all, on the grounds that it rocks the boat a bit.
"With our thoughts, we make the world" :-) - - - Game too slow for you? Masslock Compensators - - - Trouble getting out of trouble? Indestructible Injectors

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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Smivs »

I think I'm missing something here - why would we want more or bigger galaxies?
I've been playing on and off for 6-7 years and have two 'regular' commanders. My oldest and most travelled Commander is now in G7, and has spent quite a bit of time in each of the preceding ones (except G4 :wink: ). In all that time I don't think I've visited a quarter of the planets in each. In other words there are far more planets than I've needed already :P
As for phisical size of the galaxies, again I have to say they are big enough. I remember my No2 Commander's trek from Tionisla to Tianve a while ago. That was one loooooooong journey!
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Redspear
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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Redspear »

Big enough, I agree. Even half that size would be big enough (I suspect) as I tried to suggest earlier.

I don't think anyone is suggesting that something is broken here, merely that bigger galaxies might have a certain appeal to some.
Like a fancy new skin on a ship: even if largely cosmetic (suppose contract distances were limited), it might be more appealing to some.

I agree however, that things ain't too bad as they are :-)
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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by cim »

Smivs wrote:I think I'm missing something here - why would we want more or bigger galaxies?
One thing that Frontier had which Oolite doesn't was ... as the name suggests ... a frontier. The Oolite map is of a region of space which has fairly clearly been well-established and settled in a mostly stable political structure for thousands of years, with most of the colonies established in the "consolidation" phase, presumably as terraforming and harsh-environment technologies improved.

The Frontier map, by comparison, is a region where a new starfaring species is still in the early stages of exploration and colonisation and hasn't really started on consolidation. As can be seen from Zireael's sketch, "inhabited" space is about the same size of region as the Oolite charts - but the population is probably less than a tenth of that of Oolite space, and most of it is concentrated around a few major hub systems with the rest of the systems being either genuinely uninhabited or so lightly populated that they'd look empty on our F7 screen.

There would be perhaps a point to having extra systems if it gave an actual frontier region and an uninhabited region beyond that, though you would have to either do some very specific handwaving or also change the planet parameters of the existing systems, since there's no way they'd have evolved like they have if they weren't firmly boxed in.

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Pleb
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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Pleb »

Although I was originally a supporter of adding more galaxies and have even gone as far as to post on the forums one way of going about adding them to Oolite by editing the source code, I do have to agree that by adding more galaxies than the current 8 would basically stop the game from being Oolite.

If you were going to develop a new algorithm to generate more galaxies that were bigger, had more star systems, contained more than one planet per system, had more than 8 economy types and more than 8 galaxies and all other kinds of new features, then you would basically be making a whole new game! I myself have messed around with the source to do most of things I have just listed, but came to the conclusion that what I'd developed had basically broke the game and created a whole new one - one that was rather crudely made out editing someone else's code!

All of the ideas that people have suggested are good ideas, but when you start changing key points of Oolite that were originally points of Elite, you might as well stop calling it Oolite...

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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Zireael »

I think I'm missing something here - why would we want more or bigger galaxies?
I don't think anyone is suggesting that something is broken here, merely that bigger galaxies might have a certain appeal to some.
Precisely. I never meant to imply that what we have now is bad, but given that we have some veteran players (both veterans of original Elite and of Oolite), allowing expanding beyond what they already know is IMHO a good idea.

@ cim: not quoting your post because I agree with it completely. This game could use some frontier/sparsely populated systems and some uninhabited ones (not to mention that uninhabited ones open up moar possibilities and ideas for OXPs :twisted: :D )

***
An aside:
Whether that's from equipment, galaxy size or the ships that we chose to fly, it's worth looking at.

Maybe all this kind if stuff should be by oxp, if at all, on the grounds that it rocks the boat a bit.
Look no further: I just compiled a list of oxps based on Frontier: http://wiki.alioth.net/index.php/User:Zireael
Last edited by Zireael on Sat Dec 21, 2013 5:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Pleb
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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Pleb »

Zireael wrote:@ cim: not quoting your post because I agree with it completely. This game could use some frontier/sparsely populated systems and some uninhabited ones (not to mention that uninhabited ones open up moar possibilities and ideas for OXPs :twisted: :D )
The reason there are no uninhabited systems is that all the systems yo can reach in Oolite are part of the Galactic Co-Operative. There are loads more systems outside the Co-Operative, but you can't get to them because the hyperdrive is programmed to only travel to systems inside the Co-Operative. In Frontier the Co-Operative has fallen, so all the systems are available to get to. This, of course, is if you assume that Frontier is the sequel to Elite. I like to think of it more as an 'alternate timeline' and like to think of Oolite more as the continuation of Elite. :D

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Tricky
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Re: More galaxies

Post by Tricky »

Pleb wrote:
Commander McLane wrote:The main objection against having more galaxies is still that it would basically just be more of the same. For those who don't know this particular factoid yet: when Bell & Braben went to their publisher, they wanted Elite to have million or billions of galaxies, which would have been easily possible at extremely little cost by manipulating the seed. However, their publisher was wiser than the two excited young programmers who wanted to show off their potentially gigantic universe. He immediately saw that the ensuing endless repetition of basically the same pattern would make the limits of the procedural generation glaringly obvious. Thus he decided that eight galaxies would be a good number. Enough to give the impression of vastness (2048 different systems in a space game was unheard of at the time), while not yet looking boring through endless variations of the same.

Not to mention the nightmare of having to check millions or billions of galaxies for offensive procedurally generated planet names.
I have to agree. Although I did play around with the source code to explore the possibilities of more than 8 galaxies, it is basically more of the same. And the way they are generated means that it's always going to be more of the same. As far as I could tell, you could never have more than 256 systems in a galaxy because of how they are generated. In order to have more you would have to devise a whole new algorithm, which then would make it no longer the same game...
If using bytes then yes 256 systems is a hard limit. But you can push the algorithm to create many more systems in one galaxy.

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Pleb
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Re: More galaxies

Post by Pleb »

Tricky wrote:If using bytes then yes 256 systems is a hard limit. But you can push the algorithm to create many more systems in one galaxy.
You would have to push it pretty far! As far as I can tell from trial and error, you would have to re-write a massive amount of code to even achieve this... :(

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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Zireael »

I wish some of those - the max number of galaxies, the number of systems per galaxy - were pushed out to planetinfo.plist, just for convenience's sake. Then we could make an oxp which sets the max number of galaxies to 16 or whatever we want.

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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Norby »

I am happy with the classic numbers of systems and galaxies. There are other ways to extend possibilities:

1. Much larger systems.
Need to change arithmetics from float to double and cim said it is not so easy but if we get it then we can multiply the interesting destinations.
My guess if we can use currently about 1000km around the witchpoint safely then with double we will get more than a million km to make real solar systems.
Edit: cim refined these here.

2. Interstellar stations.
Systems placed in a 256x256 matrix in all galaxies, so we have many (522240 ;)) empty points to make artificial outposts.
Logical places are in the middle of four or more connected systems where travel routes crosses (check here or here).
I think at OXP level all points are reachable at half distances between two systems using scriptedMisjump and removing Thargoids.
Last edited by Norby on Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: More/ larger galaxies

Post by Pleb »

Zireael wrote:I wish some of those - the max number of galaxies, the number of systems per galaxy - were pushed out to planetinfo.plist, just for convenience's sake. Then we could make an oxp which sets the max number of galaxies to 16 or whatever we want.
That actually is possible and would not require much work to change in the source code. You could make the max number of galaxies a defined number (although it would have to be in multiples of 8 to be consistant, although it wouldn't necessarily have to be if you really wanted), and have the seed used for each 'sequence' of 8 galaxies defined as well. Of course, the main problem that develops when you have more than 8 galaxies is that it can break some OXPs that require you to travel round the 8 galaxies in one mission. It would make these journeys a lot longer! :lol:
Norby wrote:I am happy with the classic numbers of systems and galaxies. There are other ways to extend possibilities:

1. Much larger systems.
Need to change arithmetics from float to double and cim said it is not so easy but if we get it then we can multiply the interesting destinations.
My guess if we can use currently about 1000km around the witchpoint safely then with double we will get more than a million km to make real solar systems.

2. Interstellar stations.
Systems placed in a 256x256 matrix in all galaxies, so we have many (522240 ;)) empty points to make artificial outposts.
Logical places are in the middle of four or more connected systems where travel routes crosses (check here or here).
I think at OXP level all points are reachable at half distances between two systems using scriptedMisjump and removing Thargoids.
These ideas are great, but they are actually already possible with OXPs (except the actual size of a system). But you can add more stuff to a system, such as planets, moons and stations, that would make a system seem larger. Another cool idea might be to add more than one sun to a system... :wink:

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