Pipedream: Space station dimension working as the Nether

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Ezer'Arch, Feb 10, 2015.

  1. Ezer'Arch

    Ezer'Arch Administrator
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    (This topic is in reference of @Dex Luther's Orbital Miner: http://forum.micdoodle8.com/index.php?threads/orbital-miner.2604/)

    Space station dimensions could work like the Nether, one per primary planet (e.g. Overworld, Mars, Venus) and could be used to travel long distances in some kind of low orbit height, but the distances traveled in a Space station dim would be 1:1 ratio to the Overworld.

    This idea would allow the player to install or create space stations, satellites or any geo-synchronous equipments (e.g. the orbital miner) covering certain areas of the planet. (EDIT: And perhaps, to be able to travel from a space station to another and to satellites.)

    Currently, space stations (the structure) are always generated at 0,64,0; one per world in a separate dimension per player. In my idea, you could spawn more than one space station, anywhere in the space station dimension, referenced to the primary planet x/z-coords that you lift off from with your rocket.

    To avoid space stations overlapping each other, the space station dimension would be divided into "regions" of 512x64x512 (if you know how world saves work, you know it already). Each region fits in a 512x512 grid centered at 0,0; this mechanics is like the Map item. And the building limit would be 128 blocks for each direction, so that two space station will not touch or get too close to each other.

    For example, if you created a space station in the 0,0-region and want another, you have to travel 512 block along x or z axis for a free SS slot.

    If you fall from a space station located at 768, 768, you will fall at the same coord in the overworld.
     
    #1 Ezer'Arch, Feb 10, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015
  2. Hanakocz

    Hanakocz Member

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    Dimension for each player is more easier and better. Also it is SAFE for them, becuase visiting the base means you need to have permission to visit that dimension.....if there can be more than one station in same dimension, you will nee just another protection thing....
     
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  3. Ezer'Arch

    Ezer'Arch Administrator
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    Yes, one dimension per player for safety reasons is good, unless the server has some kind of worldguard installed. But still, it would be cool if the space stations or satellites were geopositioned.

    Fun fact: on the overworld, place some chunk loaders (e.g. Launch controllers) at and around the x=0, z=0. Go to the space station, drop some items and let them fall to the overworld. Now, go to the overworld, at 0,0, you'll find all the items you dropped there, if they haven't despawned.
     
  4. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    This is the type of suggestion I really like: original, enhances fun, and kind of based on real world physics (or even better, what a Minecraft version of physics would be).

    Add "not too hard to implement" to the list and that's when things can get interesting...

    What can easily be done is to change the co-ordinates which a player drops into when he falls off the space station. That's just a number.

    What can be done fairly easily is to have that number changing over time, like an orbital path for the space station. But I need to figure out what that path should be to be useful, and also a way for it to be somehow predictable for players where it is currently at.

    Luckily, we have a nice block called the Display Screen :)

    Personally I think Galacticraft needs something like this:
    [​IMG]

    But it needs some thought how to implement that in-game, given that the Overworld is not spherical but is, essentially, flat.

    One thing I have been actively looking at is whether the Display Screen can draw a large-scale map of the world, zoomed out and biome based - so you would see where is land, ocean, snow etc but not individual blocks. The drawing part is easy, the harder question is whether we can extract biome map data from vanilla Minecraft even for chunks which are not loaded (maybe not even generated yet). This would cool in many ways, and is the direction I intend for the Display Screen to be going in.

    (Unfortunately due to me and Micdoodle8 being busy with real life stuff, and also all the recent effort has been on improving other mod compatibility and fixing crashes, because we want Galacticraft 3 to be stable for modpacks, the Display Screen has kind of been on hold since it was first introduced into the game. I do plan for it eventually to have additional, useful, screens.)
     
  5. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    Help wanted:

    What would be really great just now is if someone is skilled with 3D modelling packages, there are two new in-game models I'd like to make. It can be Blender or any other package you prefer, as long as the output can be in Wavefront .obj form + a texture file.

    Take a look at some of the existing models in the game here:
    https://github.com/micdoodle8/Galac...s/galacticraftcore/models/frequencyModule.obj
    https://github.com/micdoodle8/Galac...icraftcore/textures/model/frequencyModule.png

    There's a reason for linking to those ones, as a model I'd like to see would be a Minecraft / Galacticraft version of this:
    [​IMG]

    Obviously, one of those will be needed to track your Space Station positioning accurately :)
     
  6. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    BTW, you do know that with Launch Controllers, you can take a rocket, if you want to travel rapidly between two specific points on the Overworld? (Could be more than two points if you want to get fancy and change the destination frequency in the Launch Controller.)
     
  7. Requia

    Requia Member

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    The problem I see with coordinates over time, is that the minecraft world is absurdly big. Actually hitting the spot you want to hit would be near impossible (though it could be good for going someplace nobody has ever been, or will ever be, for strip mining).

    I'm gonna take advantage of that rapid travel though.
     
  8. Hanakocz

    Hanakocz Member

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    Well, it is normal that te world is bordered on servers to stop players from infinite generating of new chunks (lags, hdd usage, etc)
    For example our world is strictly small for now (and when it wil be needd, we can make it bigger) -> http://93.91.240.148:29690/
    How would you choose coords on this world? Well, it would be easier to choose from just this range, but...that means you need some dependencies, or hard config to allow coords from to.
     
  9. Space Viking

    Space Viking Member

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    [​IMG]


    Something like that?

    Even by just having something that merely resembles a tracking monitor for orbital objects would alone be a really cool thing. I'll support it.


    The orbit doesn't need to be inclined, but it sure does look cool. The tracker also shows if the space station is located at the night or day side of the planet, effectively making it serve as a clock. On the other hand, the surface and its various sectors are understandably a different issue since that implies there're separate timezones in the supposedly same dimension.

    Thinking of the celestial bodies' shape, I'd imagine they could have a more elaborated explanation regarding the nature behind their ostensibly flat shape. On planetary scale the longitude could seemingly loop for observers in orbit, meaning worlds would practically speaking be more of a cylindrical shape. Though theoretically if the latitude could also loop (I.E. a polar orbit), it would in a sense make celestial bodies behave as if they were round.

    Among one of the various concepts I've been working on is to grant an easy property control for icons of celestial bodies' optical phenomena and visuals (e.g. phasing and clouds) while still remaining faithful to Minecraft's rather blocky theme. Relevantly, one of its proposed features is a looping longitude (horizontal axis) for terrain, which could also for example be used creating a separate cloud layer that scrolls independently.

    Note: I'm not trying to suggest actual inter-looping worlds, just a visual effect for the planet sprites seen from space.

    Of course, how terrain should exactly be applied for celestial body icons is still under review, so I'll stay put with that.


    It's funny you're asking, because I did offer mic my potentially service as a 3D modeller for GC. He didn't express any need for it, but that dosen't mean I can't help other contributors (which he of course has shown to appreciate). :)

    As I had to dust off my software along with giving my rusty modelling skills some honing, I started simple as a mean of verifying if my exported obj. + texture works for you. They're packed into the uploaded file "test1a.zip".

    It should look something like this strange box of multi-uselessness:

    [​IMG]


    If this would appear to work (the scales might be extremely off though), I could start working on the satellite tracker. I'd just appreciate some more details on its supposed ingame proportions. :p
     

    Attached Files:

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  10. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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  11. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    Scale is the easy part, anything can be scaled ... let's take this private, I messaged you. Your offer to help here is really, really appreciated.
     
  12. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    I also keep thinking about this and how we can make Galacticraft more "space like" without spoiling the core Minecraft aesthetic of:
    1. flat world
    2. circles are squares, spheres are cubes

    One option I have toyed with - and this is really going to annoy you guys, because the code to do this is actually in Galacticraft right now, it's been there since around June 2014 only it's disabled - is to make the world not flat.

    Screenshot 1 (early concept test, a lot of issues and nasty gaps but it shows you the idea:
    [​IMG]


    Screenshot 2 - a lot of improvements, still a minor gap / glitch, that's now invisible in the latest version
    [​IMG]


    That's still a possibility for some future version of Galacticraft, maybe only for "small" moons. Please do not ask questions about when or whether this will ever see the light of day.

    The bigger issue is: what should the Overworld look like from a Space Station. I would love to add: a terminator line, an atmosphere fringe, and clouds.

    Oh wait: somebody already suggested that and made a mock-up: http://forum.micdoodle8.com/index.php?threads/bigger-earth.4435/page-2#post-33953 ;)

    It feels like we're stuck with square planets. A rotating cube just looks wrong, and raises unanswerable questions like how can players get to the other face of the cube. But what do you guys think about a terminator line moving across the square planet, as the sun rises? We can probably do that. It's not consistent with the vanilla game physics (i.e. it's the same time of day everywhere on the Overworld). But think of the square planet as being like a Mercator projection of a planet which is in fact spherical, only because it's Minecraft you can't see the curve, the curve has to be made flat (i.e. Mercator projection).

    We could also maybe look at "Low Earth Orbit" space stations where the terrain underneath changes, and is more zoomed in.

    I don't have a problem at all with the Minecraft world wrapping around so that e.g. x=-10000 joins on to x=10000, if we are talking about graphical effects in orbit, and space station orbital paths. As has been said, a lot of servers use a WorldBorder plugin to limit the size of the world. We could make the wraparound configurable in Galacticraft.
     
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  13. Space Viking

    Space Viking Member

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    Very interesting. Just like the IRL counterpart, the Moon in Minecraft is presumably tidally locked by having the same facing toward its parent planet.

    Though originally it didn't have phases, but Notch eventually added that (ignoring the joke it'd be made spherical) in a manner similar to real-life, implying it's geometry is spot-on to what you define as a Mercator projection. The only deviation is the phase-cycles are physically impossible due to the Moon is orbiting the Overworld's second lagrange point. Related fun trivia:


    [​IMG]


    The recurring saying "it's just a game" can even be working both ways here. Namely, Minecraft wasn't primarily about astronomy, and therefore it wasn't necessary for the official developers to put their effort into designing any sensible astrodynamics either. Similarly do some games with day-night cycles simply use the Moon as a counter-Sun.

    But to the point, considering how phases appear in Minecraft, the plan behind implementing a terminator line for other celestial bodies is practically speaking a layer effect cut from a greyscale images of pre-drawn frames and in turn accordingly selected by the engine:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    This way it won't be needed to draw separate phase frames for each custom celestial body like it was done with the vanilla Moon.

    As a nod towards Minecraft's cuby theme, I thought the equator for celestial bodies could be x4 what you'd typically see as a square from space. Compare this terrain template to the surface of Ganymede:


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    The theory is that the celestial body's shape could be a customizeable image mask (square as default) that conceals 3/4 of the icon's full graphics. As an example on this technique, I designed a while ago this concept animation of the Jovian system's notable laplace resonance to demonstrate this graphically effect:


    [​IMG]


    If you observe Ganymede, you might notice it's tidally locked just like IRL. The other moons are also that, but it's hardly noticeable. You might also notice Jupiter is utilizing a multi-layer effect. Accordingly it's "terrain", clouds and also an atmosphere layer (for light-scattering).

    Furthermore, a layer for glare can also be enabled for skybox graphics to give custom celestial bodies that shine you'd on the vanilla Moon:


    [​IMG]


    For stations in low orbit, I'd imagine higher resolution variant of these icons stretched nearly all the way to sides. The skyline could be based on the sky used for the planet's respective surface dimension. Even non-landable worlds, like Jupiter, could give quite an enjoyable view of atmospheric turbulence and lightning. Of course, nobody would be telling about the radiation exposure worth 18 000 rem/day. lol

    Regardless, the only fuzz I find with the the concept of synchronous orbits is they aren't always possible depending on what celestial body it is. I could name Mercury and Venus as examples.
     
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  14. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    Terminator line would need to move smoothly as time ticks pass, not in 8 "jumps". Possibly a blended effect of two of these neighbouring layers (the blend changing from 0:100 to 100:0 as time passes) could work without being hard to implement. But on the huge Overworld seen from a Low Earth Orbit space station, that would be too coarse. I can maybe look at making this greyscale image algorithmically in-game with more than 8 stages for larger images.

    (Obviously also for Jupiter when it comes. These issues all move to the foreground when we have to render Jupiter.)

    On the 'rotating planets' thing I totally 100% agree. Even though Minecraft physics say the sun orbits the Overworld and the Overworld is flat, it's 100% clear to me that the Overworld is a solid object, and the sun and the moon (and space stations) orbit around it. The GC planets are also solid objects. What you see is a 2D representation of a 3D object, like a net covering a sphere which has been pulled off and spread out flat. In the Minecraft game world, although players think it's flat, it could be curved, at 300 million blocks x 300 million blocks and with a rendering distance of 512 blocks maximum, the curvature is so slight nobody is going to notice it.
     
  15. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    In a while we can maybe make this official with a Wiki page explaining the physics :)
     
  16. Hanakocz

    Hanakocz Member

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    One for the view on map : Can you name the Overworld by map name and not by "Overworld" ? :)
     
  17. InsanityPie

    InsanityPie Member

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    I like that idea, it might even be easy to implement later on
     
  18. Space Viking

    Space Viking Member

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    Well, for your information, I'm open to the concept of: MOAR FRAMES! ;)
     
  19. Ezer'Arch

    Ezer'Arch Administrator
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    Something like this?

    [​IMG]

    WIP. I'm assuming it'll fit in a 3x3x3 space.

    Powered? Any moving parts? Taller, smaller? Must the dish have a thickness? I can't proceed without knowing how it would look like.
     
    #19 Ezer'Arch, Mar 14, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2015
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  20. radfast

    radfast Administrator
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    oooooh, looks nice.
    I think the nodule at the centre of the dish should be a cube?
    3x3x3 sounds good - you could even make the dish part larger.
    The base can be very simple, like a 1x1x1 cube, so players can build their own towers for it

    Yes it can move, so the moving part and the base part need to be 2 separate models. Can the under part of the dish (where the base attaches) have a very simple handle / axis, in Minecraft-style square cross section? Think about a saucepan lid, inverted.

    [​IMG]

    See the image of the real dish above:

    The dish has a hoop on the underside (which I guess is made of heavy materials to counterweight it) and a horizontal axis at the centre of mass. There is a Y-shaped arm holding that axis, which can turn 360 degrees.
     

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