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Wait... no procedural planets?!?!

Discussion in 'General' started by Lrj52, Oct 23, 2015.

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This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.
  1. ATalkingRock Apprentice Engineer

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    I think for me it's the confusion of how both mix together. As the game stands you would have procedurally generated planets, however they won't look nice because of no hand crafting?
     
  2. BlackUmbrellas Senior Engineer

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    I'm almost positive that's exactly what they said; somebody will have to go back and look at the footage, but I'm certain they said they generated a heightmap and then the planet procedurally generated the materials and resources and plants and such that fit the heightmap.
     
  3. aRottenKomquat Apprentice Engineer

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    Remember all the donut asteroids? They're probably doing some hand-crafting to prevent that kind of thing from happening with planets.

    Besides, I'm sure the modding community will make planets galore, and if Keen treats them like they do the cargo ships, a lot of them will eventually make it into the game.
     
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  4. noxLP Junior Engineer

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    But man, no offense or rage here, but take in mind this is all plain speculation, all depends how they'll do it. The method could be worst than you have seen ever or just brilliantly crafted so modders will do gorgeous semi random planets, we don't know right now.

    There's only one solution: wait.
     
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  5. Zyfe Trainee Engineer

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    Whether or not ore generation is randomized is hardly the concern. It's about the look and feel of the planets.

    If all I cared about was ore placement then I could play "Space Engineers - Text Based Edition". :p
     
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  6. BlackUmbrellas Senior Engineer

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    Handcrafted asteroids "look and feel" better than the procedural ones. Ergo, handcrafted planets would likely "look and feel" better than procedural ones.

    The fact that they're hybridizing the two methods somehow can only be a good thing.
     
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  7. Zyfe Trainee Engineer

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    They do look better than the procedural ones, certainly. But they have the same problem as planets will have, that being there's only so many. The reason their procedural asteroids are bad is because they haven't spent any real time making their algorithm to generate them any better. It was a slapped together attempt at best.

    You're going to see a few different planets, that will have the same terrain features, over and over. Unless they release with 100's of different height-maps, this is going to be the reality. It's a far-cry from what I thought (and hoped) they were going for, and so it's very disappointing. I know I'm not alone in this either, but either way, that's my opinion on it.
     
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  8. Lrj52 Apprentice Engineer

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    The thing that bothers me is that you will eventually get to the point where you start to recognise similarities in different planets of the same basic type. Even if they were procedurally generated, they could be done so in a way that makes them look natural. The only thing they would have to do in the future to make them procedurally generated would be to generate the hightmap. I just feel like it would be a planet sized (sorry) missed opportunity to not procedurally generate them. It would just feel so much better to explore planets with different terrain to everyone else's.
     
  9. BlackUmbrellas Senior Engineer

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    2,818
    Visiting tons and tons of planets isn't likely to be a thing that happens easily, though. If planets are rare (as a lot of people want), that'd mean that you'd only have limited exposure. Add in some semi-randomization, occasional updates with new heightmaps, and the ability for the community to make their own planetary hightmaps, and, well...

    It wont be a huge issue, I don't think.
     
  10. entspeak Senior Engineer

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    But planets will be so huge and it will take so long to travel to them that it will take some time to get bored with them. Hopefully, by then, we will have procedural planets (hopefully ones that aren't in full view from the surface of another planet). I can't wait until you will actually have to go across an empty void (or asteroid ridden void) before you even see another planet.
     
  11. chrisb Senior Engineer

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    Yeah, the moon was only 20km, but on the Mars type I heard 31km mentioned I think. I think the Earth like planet looked larger than that, so maybe around the 40km size. Don't know for sure, but they are fairly small. That said, we have lots of talented content makers that will probably rub their hands when they get the chance of modding these, so lets wait and see.
    Very early days yet.
     
  12. Lrj52 Apprentice Engineer

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    It's not that I am going to visit tons and tons of planets, but the fact that tons of people are going to visit a single or few types of the same planet. Eventually, everyone will know everything about each type. It will take a while, sure. But eventually it will happen unless they keep making hightmaps, but if they keep doing that you just loose the feeling of the planet you landed on being your own discovery. I could live with it, but I hope I don't have to.
     
  13. BlackUmbrellas Senior Engineer

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    2,818
    Ultimately, planets feeling same-y probably couldn't be avoided either way.

    Procedural asteroids already all feel the same. There's like, 3 or four variant "families", and within each one they're all more-or-less the same.

    Purely procedural planets would feel the same after a while.

    Partly-handcrafted planets at least give the possibility of unique and engaging terrain features that are hard to get through procedural methods.
     
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  14. Lrj52 Apprentice Engineer

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    True, but... isn't it just the hightmaps they are designing? If you just limit the procedural generation to a set of rules you could still make terrain look good. They will start to look the same at some point either way, as you stated. I just believe procedural planets would take longer to feel so.
     
  15. BlackUmbrellas Senior Engineer

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    2,818
    We'll just have to wait and see, I suppose.

    As has been mentioned: they can always move on to pure procedural generation later.
     
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  16. REDSHEILD Junior Engineer

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    888
    You know, the devs themselves can also just add more height maps. Preferably in secret.

    Especially if say their graphics team finishes early on a feature and decides to do some new planets.
     
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  17. Mix-martes86 Senior Engineer

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    1,110
    They're designing both the heightmaps (PNG or DDS when not found according to source code 104) and the rules (XML) defining each type of planet, which means that you can come up with whatever combination you want. If only I understood the format they're using for the maps, I'd be able to put it better, but I haven't looked into it yet.

    Cheers
     
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  18. Fenris Apprentice Engineer

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    356
    I was kind of bummed out myself when they said the planets were not procedural (although I couldn't hear the guy on the right at all, so I have no clue what he said), I guess I was really hoping for no two planets to be alike. I'm just hoping the "earth" type planets are rare, I'd just really hate to have most of the planets I find be easy to "colonize".
     
  19. Lrj52 Apprentice Engineer

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    Nice, so I'm guessing it wouldn't be too hard to make them fully procedural later on, if they felt like it.
     
  20. Mix-martes86 Senior Engineer

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    I guess. They'd have to implement an image generator algorithm that used the colour channels the right way and allowed for direct processing, or saved the images for later use. Or maybe they could resucitate the old generator and fill in the blanks. But the result wouldn't be so spectacular as if the maps were manually (with more attention to detail) generated, which is the point for the new approach, as I looked at the planets, how they were before, and I pretty much like them now, and if they're big, it'd be hard to get bored of them fast, at least in the first few months, before modders started making new planets. What I like from that though, is the possibility to add real heightmap data, that'd kick ass.

    Cheers
     
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  21. Sarekh Senior Engineer

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    1,187
    You know, that reminds me of that image-analysis thing at GoodAI - maybe they should teach GoodAI overlord to recognise planets and then let it make its own planets...
     
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  22. RayvenQ Moderator

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    The 31km mentioned was their height ABOVE the planet, not the planets size
     
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  23. chrisb Senior Engineer

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    Yeah great, so my hearings o.k. just my brain that's gone. ;)
     
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  24. Mix-martes86 Senior Engineer

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    Now that'd be cool if they pulled it off.
     
  25. Thedevistator Senior Engineer

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    The planets are probably 100km. Seems like a pretty solid number.

    If they could that the procedural generator might become one of the best.
     
  26. chrisb Senior Engineer

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    Do you think. o_O. If they are I'm happy, but they didn't look anything like that. There again, couldn't tell with the Earth-like planet, that could be large. Still you may have brightened my day, although we're only 13mins into it here. ;)
     
  27. Thedevistator Senior Engineer

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    I can tell based off the moon's size that planet has to be at least 3x the size of the moon he was on.
     
  28. chrisb Senior Engineer

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    Keep talking, your keeping my dreams alive.
     
  29. Thedevistator Senior Engineer

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    Oh, and for the people thinking those source code planets were randomly generated. I don't think they were. The 1.094 planets definantly looked handcrafted with a but of procedural change up here or there. I hope that raises people's hopes.
     
  30. Mix-martes86 Senior Engineer

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    The debug UI lets the slider to a max 120. :)

    In 094 they used a similar method for heightmaps and material layers (using binary files instead of DDS files), but in 093 the system was very different, 100% procedural I think.

    Cheers
     
Thread Status:
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