Computing planet orbit's

About the actual programming of the game.

Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby croxis » Wed Sep 11, 2013 12:54 am

*taps fingers on desk thinking*

I say speed up orbits by a good order of magnitude or two. The only way orbiting bodies will impact gameplay is if the player sticks around long enough to notice it and alter how they do things. Titan has an orbital period of 16 days. It would take several days of nonstop playing in the saturn system for orbital motion to impact gameplay decisions. The closer moons go much quicker, Mimas is just under a day, so even a couple on hours in orbit there can impact the player decision making process.

On the other hand this is a space opera, so moving around in the saturn system would be fast and cheap regardless.

A bigger example would be going from saturn to neptune. It would take years of nonstop playing in the sol system for the orbital motion to make an impact. But if travel is fast and cheap then it doesn't matter.
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby mrout » Wed Sep 11, 2013 8:30 am

croxis: We won't be speeding up orbits by any order of magnitude. Orbits have a certain period because of basic physics.
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby ChemicalRascal » Wed Sep 11, 2013 11:12 am

From a game-design point of view, it wouldn't be a horrible idea, though, just fiddle with the maths a bit. It's just like how games with a day/night cycle often don't have them at a the same rate as reality, because then players would never experience the cycle.
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby mrout » Wed Sep 11, 2013 12:36 pm

ArmA 3 does. Like this, it's a simulation game. If you sign on at midday and log off at 2pm, you don't see any night. If you log on at relatively normal times of ~6pm-10pm, you usually will experience dusk and night.
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby ChemicalRascal » Wed Sep 11, 2013 1:23 pm

Arma 3 is very different. It's too far into simulation. I mean, for us. Arma works because that's what Arma's goals are. Those goals focus on different things to us.

We want to make an immerse exploration and creation game. Yes, we should be far into simulation territory, but not so far as to take away fun experiences from the player. Of course, we should work out how far out we are willing to go just for "fun" and what constitutes "fun", but simulation just for the point of simulation is a useless thing to do.
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby tecywiz121 » Wed Sep 11, 2013 5:08 pm

I don't know, I kind of like the idea of realistic orbits. If the planet has a long year, you could use it for a relatively fixed base. It's not like all planets will have huge orbital periods. Look at Kepler-70b with an orbital period of just 5 hours.
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby Alderin » Wed Sep 11, 2013 5:54 pm

I like the realistic orbits and realistic rotational period for planets. Being mostly in your ship, a day/night cycle is less of an issue, and if you establish a base on an Earth-like planet, you can choose which "timezone" the base is in. The planet's rotational period might be 30 hours, not 24, so logging in every day at the same time you would 'regress' through the times of the surface. Or you could have a base on something smaller and faster, watch the sun rise and set over your base 10 times in an hour, stars spinning in the always-night-black sky... (you'd leave, but it was so hard to land!)

I don't see the problem. :-)
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby plop » Wed Sep 11, 2013 9:22 pm

Maybe we should have a clear game design on this point before taking this discussion further.
(An article about simulation in games, I find it interstingly related to this discussion :D)
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby mrout » Thu Sep 12, 2013 12:12 am

No, ArmA 3 is not too far into simulation. It's a simulation game, and it's realistic, but it's also a hell of a lot of fun. That's our goal too. We're making a simulation game, first and foremost. A simulation game yes, but a simulation game nonetheless.
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Re: Computing planet orbit's

Postby ChemicalRascal » Thu Sep 12, 2013 3:54 am

It's a hell of a lot of fun in that context, in the context of minor infantry skirmishes with the player investing a considerable amount of time into a single encounter, to a certain playerbase. ArmA 3 is not universally fun, in the same way that Flight Simulator is not universally fun, in the same way that Dwarf Fortress is not universally fun. They are fun to a group of people, but it is a niche.

The vanilla experience will not be needlessly accurate, not to the point of hampering the rest of the experience. If people want something that is realistic-to-minutae, they can maintain a content fork.
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