Bi-Weekly update 15

Manage the Universe

Another two weeks of progress have been made on ‘Manage the Universe’. Still working on very rough concepts. But I have some nice screenshots to spice it up!

World surface generator

Most of the work went into the tile generator. This system will generate the surface of the world where your character can walk upon. The world consists of regions where each region is a hexagon that is filled with smaller hexagon tiles. A few screenshots of the work in progress:

Decisions

There are a few things that I had to decide upon. How big is the world? How detailed is this world? Is it generated or hand crafted? How close by is the camera on the player, and how good does it have to look when being that close?

I choose the world to consist of regions in hexagonal shapes, with that being the smallest ‘thing’ in the game. You specify if a region has housing, mines, units, etc. Then the region is split up into smaller hexagon tiles, with the content of these tiles being generated from the region ‘master data’. These tiles leverage the benefits of a generated terrain while still being able to model specific tiles. This way I can still create interesting tiles with specific features to it.

Here is a screenshot of me work out another aspect of the design: how ‘rough’ these terrain tiles will be and what the max height can be while still look believable.

To get an idea of sizes: the screenshot is a mountain tile composition I made. This mountain consists of 7 tiles. This is the highest I can get a mountain to be without taking more tiles as a base, or else it will look ‘off’. The capsules are the size of a human avatar, for size comparison. Each tile is roughly 40 by 40 meters, the region 400 by 500 meters.

There are still some things to experiment with: take the mountain for instance, it is very low poly. I don’t know my poly budget yet but I think it doesn’t look that well even if you take in consideration there will be props on the mountain slopes. So I think I have to go with LOD profiles on my tiles to get a better looking world, especially since the cam will be more close by than the screenshot currently shows.

Next

There is still a lot to do to get even a minimal working version.

Working on the game gets easier by the week. I had a lot of difficulties determining where to work on when all was unclear, but it is a lot more fun now I am heading in a specific direction.

Fingers crossed if I can have some gameplay ready in 2 months from here…

Published by Erik_de_Roos

Erik de Roos is a Freelance software developer.

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