Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

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Amarula
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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by Amarula »

One evening I decided to clean up the old dune decorative graphics as a secret side project. I was already familiar with the assets because I'd used them in the Alien Biomes mod and I knew I could get something good done quickly.
One Friday long long ago on a planet far far away: My boss: "No you can't work on that, it will take months and we don't have the time." The following Monday, me: "Look at this and tell me what you think." My boss: "OMG this is incredible we have to do this!" So I totally love secret side projects that produce amazing results. Really looking forward to the new Nauvis look!
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tvardero
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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by tvardero »

What map really misses are rivers. Without rivers Nauvis still looks unnatural. Water bodies are not interconnected, because of land bridges.

Could you please reuse shallow water tiles to connect water bodies as well? And using natural paths for river generation as well?

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by FuryoftheStars »

This all looks amazing! I will admit, when I saw the picture of the river I let out a quiet swear of delight... too bad it doesn't look like they actually stuck around. Could've used shallow water to make some areas crossable with that paths system....

Which, to that end:
Terrahertz wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 1:45 pm
The images of the dead ends made for quite the good laugh.
I not only agree with this, but I also hope it doesn't get completely removed. While I understand and agree with the idea of not completely blocking player movement and making it annoying, at the same time I kind of feel like it'd be wrong if we can just hop in a car and go for a 1000 chunk drive unimpeded, even if technically we're going along very curvy/not straight paths. I think going down a path for a while only to find your way eventually blocked by some trees (which you can hop out and cut down, really), or even a small lake would feel great and natural.

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layus wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 1:02 pm
* There is a lot at play with elevation, but factorio remains a conceptually flat world once the map is generated. What about elevated trains ? Are they supposed to go above cliffs ? What if an elevated train became a normal train by reaching higher terrain ?
There was already a suggestion for cliffs affecting train elevation that got shot down, so it's going to a conceptual "the elevated rails will automatically increase/decrease in elevation around cliffs to maintain their overall elevation" kind of thing, even if visually it doesn't look it.

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tvardero wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 2:15 pm
What map really misses are rivers. Without rivers Nauvis still looks unnatural. Water bodies are not interconnected, because of land bridges.

Could you please reuse shallow water tiles to connect water bodies as well? And using natural paths for river generation as well?
100% agree. Could even have non-shallow water rivers with paths crossing them creating shallow water and thus crossable areas.
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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by TheCornishman »

This is just sloppy: why can't you simulate infalling debris to a molten planet, and then 4.5 billion years of tectonics, ocean and land erosion, then evolution of organisms and atmosphere, and just be done with it??
...









/joke, if that wasn't obvious! I'm very impressed with the degree to which the new landforms look more natural, and I'm looking forward to having maps generated that let me work with the terrain rather than against it all the time.
PS and sort of OT - it's always seemed odd to me that The Engineer can build railways all over the map, blowing up entire cliffs as he goes, but he can't dig canals. I understand that this would be OP in the early game: just build Teotihuacán and forget about the biters, but I miss canal-building, especially with the Cargo Ships mod. Maybe nuclear-explosion canal building in the late game is a possibility? I'm old enough to remember Plowshare! https://st.llnl.gov/news/look-back/plowshare-program
PPS I realise that I assumed the Engineer's pronoun. No offence intended :roll:
Last edited by TheCornishman on Fri Mar 08, 2024 2:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by mmmPI »

The cage boxes show the new tree placement volumes, except the box for 1 tree has been put back to it's original place. Can you guess which one it is?
It's a trick question ? The bright red one ? I think it needs to go above the pink that has the more blue nuances, not the pale pink, to support the box whose color look like indigo and bordeau mixed together, next to that purple/crimson one, close to the other between the peach and the violet. :mrgreen:
Do any of these trees look new to you?
That's again a difficult question, they do not like "new" as jarring, but if/when the question is asked you start to look at every tree suspiciously. And i think this one is the most suspicious :
New tree candidate.jpeg
New tree candidate.jpeg (14.62 KiB) Viewed 3598 times
There are others like him on the picture but this particular tree i don't think we've ever been presented. It look like a cycad or a tree with fern like leaves and i think i would have remembered him, the light green / yellow color it has also i don't think it was present in the game before but maybe i was a bit busy with my flamethrower when we met. :?
All of these path lines are combined and subtracted from both cliff and tree placement. The result is extremely convenient and feels natural. Forest trails would be the result of animal movement, and it makes sense for these to be connected to the gaps in cliffs because that's where they can get through. If you're following a path over a land bridge then there's always a way through any cliffs and trees you might encounter.
I think it's really immersive that you could see some lands and it imply something happened before, and follow those paths. I'm really excited to see how biters will behave in this environment, with some larger avenue for their attacks. Can they take advantage of it ? will it influence nest placement ? And how it will shape train networks :) I'm really appreciating all those changes, and the lengthy FFF of explanations.

My favourite picture is the one with the maximum trees that highlight the most the paths. I like the river too. The "wip" feature from alien biome was not joke x). I think that makes for good interaction with elevated rails, making a bridge feels so natural then. There seem to be such kind of interaction awaiting when looking at the latest pictures, with the many bodies of waters but no long thin rivers are visible. Can't wait to try which settings are the most prone to make some more rivers appears, maybe many many large island would make the world look like it's actually a plain covered with large rivers ? Curious to see how it influences modding the map generation if the whole system has more option for configuration too. I'm thinking of a planet where lightning regularly set forest on fire, and the engineer goes to it to help the biters automate the extingushing with water thrower turret, or something else where player wouldn't have to destroy such nice looking environment but fight hard to preserve it with automations and robots x)

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by Xiarno »

This is absolutely awesome!
Really can't wait for this update! Do we have a new estimation of release?

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by Drury »

TheCornishman wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 2:27 pm
This is just sloppy: why can't you simulate infalling debris to a molten planet, and then 4.5 billion years of tectonics, ocean and land erosion, then evolution of organisms and atmosphere, and just be done with it??
You joke but Dwarf Fortress does something along these lines (it quickly simulates events and conflicts between civilizations at map generation time).

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by Impatient »

Great stuff! These shots look far more atmospheric.

There is something I want to put forward to you, while you are working on planets and map generation: The availability of used map generation functions to mods.

For explanation a use case for version 1.1: Let's say I want to make a mod, that fleshes out filling water tiles. And the mod mechanic should be, that a water tile can not be landfilled by just one piece of landfill but requires multiple pieces, depending on what the height value for a given water tile is. I know, currently at chunk generation a terrain elevation function is used. Based on values of that function coast lines and cliffs are generated. And to achive the mod mechanic, I would like to be able to access the vanilla terrain elevation function. Not just at junk generation time but also later on. If a water tile is landfilled I would calculate the height value there, see if it is enough and if not make an entry in a custom table which stores the new height value.

That is just one use case. I am sure modders would create all sorts of great stuff if the functions you use to create the game world would be accessible by mods - also during game time.

Thanks for considering!

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by picklock »

It's great that you've also thought about Nauvis. The changes look very good and sound like a better gaming experience. I can't wait to see how it plays on a rail world in the future.

But I have one more question. Does the change mentioned in the FFF also change the resource generation?
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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by quyxkh »

How about an up-around-km-or-maybe-ten-scale low-level noise around the settings, so as you travel you'll go through subtle undulating more, less than the sliders say? You could do that with ore densities too.

So overall the map has what the sliders say, but you'll find regions where iron's scarcer or there's more water. And tweak the undulation periods/phases/rotations there'd be these spots on the map where they coincide and everything's dialed up higher or lower.

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by mmmPI »

The cage boxes show the new tree placement volumes, except the box for 1 tree has been put back to it's original place. Can you guess which one it is?
second thought
Also anyone know the difference between a plateau and a highland ?

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by wizcreations »

I think you neglected the fact that biters navigating around water will stay near the water’s edge, meaning cliffs along water are VERY helpful for defense

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by bombcar »

FuryoftheStars wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 2:15 pm
I not only agree with this, but I also hope it doesn't get completely removed.
Add another slider! Something like "dead ends" which is normally 0% (does exactly as this FFF describes) but you can tune it up to 100% and then it intentionally finds paths and breaks them. 10-20% would probably be nice (as 100% could deadlock you if not careful).
Drury wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 2:42 pm
TheCornishman wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 2:27 pm
This is just sloppy: why can't you simulate infalling debris to a molten planet, and then 4.5 billion years of tectonics, ocean and land erosion, then evolution of organisms and atmosphere, and just be done with it??
You joke but Dwarf Fortress does something along these lines (it quickly simulates events and conflicts between civilizations at map generation time).
DF has a really nice feature in world generation where you can tell it "must have X, Y, Z" and it will keep throwing away worlds until it gets one that has those. You could have something similar here, where you set the parameters like you want and then say "also, it must have a lake X size within Y of spawn", and it keeps trying until it gets that (limited to some number of tries because it might be impossible).

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by Terrahertz »

bombcar wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2024 3:18 pm
Add another slider! Something like "dead ends" which is normally 0% (does exactly as this FFF describes) but you can tune it up to 100% and then it intentionally finds paths and breaks them. 10-20% would probably be nice (as 100% could deadlock you if not careful).
With landfill being cheap, available early and now also minable the thing that could lock you in the hardest here (water) is no longer really an issue.
Further I don't think you can get surounded by cliffs so tight that you run out of resouces before cliff explosives or even elevalated rail become available.

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by MEOWMI »

Although being different in nature, I always very much enjoyed the beauty of the Alien Biomes mod, so I'm very happy that you got to work on improving the Nauvis terrain.

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by gorbag »

I'm not sure I grok the underlying reason why Nauvis (or any other planet) would have "evolved" for navigability. While I like the changes to cliffs no longer just being a border around water, I also like the puzzle of optimizing tracks and base placement for whatever Nauvis throws at me.

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by Nova »

Quote FFF: "There are some more minor things to do a bit later, like more patchy forest edges, but that's not a significant change to gameplay."
Maybe not very important to the gameplay, but very important for the looks. :D


Any chance for a revamp of the design of cliffs itself? To be honest, I never got the feel of 3D / elevation with Factorio cliffs. Not sure if it's nostalgia or whatever, but I really like the cliffs from Command & Conquer. They look thicker, especially vertically. Probably because they are actually thicker, even when adjusted to the different scales of the two games. Version 2.0 would also be the perfect place to enlarge the ingame object and their hitbox. Yeah, that would break compatibility with old cliffs, but 2.0 already breaks quite a bit.
Comparison of cliffs in Factorio and Command & Conquer
Comparison of cliffs in Factorio and Command & Conquer
factorio cliffs.png (1.46 MiB) Viewed 3272 times
That would also solve the problem with invisible cliffs in forests, because with a bigger hitbox there's less space for trees to block the cliffs from view.
Currently, as soon as I have roboport coverage on my bases I use a deconstruction planner, whitelisted for cliffs, on my whole base to remove all that without damaging my trees. ^^
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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by Koub »

I wasn't aware there was such room for improvement with Nauvis map generation.
I had gripes with the cliffs, without ever being able to elaborate what I didn't like in them, will definitely try with them when 2.0 is released.

I also have issues with the starting area's layout. I remember at some point there was a change in the map generation, and the starting area's patches+water body went from "everything is conveniently packed" to "I have to lay kilometers (*) of belts to link my first coal patch, my first power plant, and my first iron/copper mines/smelting facilities". The maps at the end seem to exhibit reasonably short distances between coal, iron, copper, and the water puddle, hopefully that's a standard.

(*) Also works with miles for those who are stuck somewhere in the middle ages :mrgreen: /troll

Anyway the new maps look amazing, and I'm looking forward to playing on them.
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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by MrGuffels »

Being entirely honest, I really was just looking at the pictures. Seeing the natural paths comparison made me realize there was a solution to distance traversal that I had never thought of and honestly it just looks like magic. Excited to see how different it feels when the terrain generation doesn't try to fuck you over at every turn lol.

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Re: Friday Facts #401 - New terrain, new planet

Post by pinecoffin »

I never comment but this was such an awesome read I had to say so. Absolutely loving your work Earendel. Great stuff. For anyone who didn't read the whole thing they missed out.

As a side note; best rocket launch for a page on this site I've seen. ;-)

As always I can't wait for the next FFF from Earendel and the Wube team.

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