Monday, April 11, 2016

About revelations in map creations

This week, I finally had the epiphany I needed to wrap up the random map generation I have been working on and off recently. I wasn't too happy with a completely random generation, and "assembling" pre-made rooms in an elegant way is really hard if you use RAGS (you can't "rotate" a group of rooms, so you cannot use the same group for a north exit or an east exit, for example, and there are many more issues that pop up, including overlapping rooms, repetitive designs, etc).
Finally, I come up with a very simple workaround, that side-steps most of the issues. Instead of linking the groups of rooms in a single big map, I will create a series of "hubs", that you can still navigate at will, but are separate "instances". Basically it will be kinda like the districts and the monorail in Europa 4, as you will be able to "teleport" in specific points from one hub to the other, so that there can't be any issues with overlapping rooms, while you can still access the entire map. The difference will just be that the connections between areas probably won't allow you to go anywhere you want (unlike the monorail), so you might at times have to go through say the medbay, before you can reach the mess hall, and then the bridge.
This makes some of the work I did so far pointless (which makes me weep T_T), but on the other hand, I think it's the simplest, most elegant solution. I just need to put together a bunch of hubs "templates" and then populate them randomly, so that the "medbay" or the "core room" isn't always in the same place. It might be slightly less varied, but I think picking 3-4 hubs from a list of, say, 10, and then have items and rooms assigned randomly (or semi-randomly if I need specific features for certain rooms) together with the different mission types and the variable hazards should be enough to make interesting cocktails for a long-ish time.

I did some testing for the ending, as I had mentioned, but I still haven't finished it, I am blitzing through the game, but I wonder if I shouldn't take it slowly and double check if the old content is fine as well, still, no bugs so far, but it's early to tell if everything is fine (I am sure issues will pop-up, eventually).

On a side note, I got another whopping 50€ donation, this time from J.Y. (thank you so much! as usual, if you are a donor make sure to check your e-mail). Now, I just need to learn self-control, and make sure neither Steam or GOG get all of my money. XD

This is pretty much it for this week. The map thing is a minor setback, but at least we should get some quality improvements out of it, which is cool. I'll be here next week as well, to update you on how I managed to waste more time, as always. Until then, have fun! ^_^

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