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[PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:35 am
by kevinz000
This is probably not as detailed as I hope it to be but:

TL;DR, whatever.

Tether needs to be condensed.
SEVEN. ZLEVELS. For a single map. Why. Not even well put to use, too. I'd understand if we had like 200 players but most of it is just unused space, openspace/tiles that no one will ever even see.
Also lots of remapping needs to be done because some of the placements are nonsensical to me.
The midpoint is being removed when dynamic transit is done (maybe even before that if I can make myself chew down on something to stop the pain that is refactoring the lift earlier), so don't worry about that.
This is about the rest of the Tether. The idea is instead of 140x140x6, it gets changed to 255x255x4.
However, this will force every other zlevel to increase to the same level so there's going to be a couple of phases, as immediately changing map size will more or less be a gaurunteed loss of server stability.
Mappers and coders, especially mappers, are welcome and needed to help on all of these, but emphasis on "station remap" because the rest I can do relatively easy with my crappy mapping skills.

Outline that is for people who just want to know how this impacts the game, rather than the technical details:
  • Map size increased to 255x255 or something close to that up from 140x140
  • Underdark combined with mining, mining difficulty/ore yield increased to compensate, some structures added to mining so it isn't a complete nerf to safe mining, although mining would now have danger even if you're aboveground.
  • V4 and V2 combined to one map each, rather than two
  • Station and ground levels collapsed to 2 each.
  • Toxins and solars shifted to mining/ground floor, no more dedicated levels.
  • Three new exploration areas: Debris field/Space, Snowfield - These two are reachable by shuttle, and Plains - Reachable within walking distance of Tether by ground EVA
Security will not be obligated to care about threats in the plains unless they have reason to believe there's going to be an assault on the station.

Outline for station:
  • GROUND FLOOR 1: Operations Deck - The majority of the "ground departments" would be here. Science, atmos, mining, small security outpost with a SMALL TEMPORARY holding cell.
  • GROUND FLOOR 2: Recreation Deck - Everything related to the Service department and recreation would be here. Library, swimming pool, food, drinks, bars, hydroponics, you name it! Everything related to recreation from station is moved down here. Features a massive central holodeck for new holodeck programs/whatnot! Small watch post for security. Small outposts/bays for medbay, science, cargo, maybe a small resting room for command. We have 255x255, let's make it work.
Dorms/locker rooms would optimally be on Ground 2, but if there's not enough room it'll be on Ground 1
  • One new elevator each for ground/station. The tether midpoint elevator is potentially changed to only serve ground 2/station 1, because why would you have a space elevator that serves stuff that doesn't require it?
  • STATION 1: Command/Engineering - Command, engineering, etc. Small break rooms that can be stocked with food/small lounge? Otherwise IDK what would be put there there. Maybe a small science area, a big-ish construction area, and uhhh an atmospherics outpost with a few pipelines running up from ground for gas supply/distribution
  • STATION 2: Med/Sci/Cargo - What it says on the tin, mainly dedicated to those areas. Med would still have small protrusions/ladders into Station 1, same with security and cargo, maybe you can even have cargo warehouse be station 1 and brig be station 1 as usual, medbay morgue station 1, etc. But the majority of their department mass would be on this level.
  • AI SATELLITE AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS: AI/Telecommunications are moved into a satellite attached to Station 1. Ground levels usually operate off this, but will have rudimentary backups incase telecomms is bombed or something.

Balance considerations
While remapping the usual balance should be considered.
  • Don't overly hugbox stuff to be near impossible to break in/out.
  • Don't make things weak that shouldn't be easy to break into or out of (I'm looking at you, ARMORY/VAULT/AI SAT!).
  • More "loot" would be nice, and I do want certain things to be moved out of RNG and instead as a guarunteed spawn. We could use with some more medication/maybe some more tools? More clothing, gimmick, and RP items are always welcome. However, do not go overboard with the loot.
Other stuff as I think of it.


Current Zlevel stack:
1-3 ground, 4 midpoint, 5-7 station, 8 mining, 9 solars/toxins, 10 centcom, 11-12 tether misc/ships/transit, 13 underdark, 14 alienship, 15-16 V2, 17-18 V4
18 * 140 * 140 = 352800 tiles
  • Much like hardsync, this will likely take place on a separate branch so it's not going to be permanently live until everything is stable and ready.
  • Map size is changed to 255x255. Do not even TRY loading the branch when this is done, due to the fact that it means there's going to be 3x tiles which is going to be bad, to put it bluntly
  • Memory optimizations that are within easy reach. This will more or less be my job to do, unless someone else here knows how (I did put a list of easy optimizations on discord once but I lost it and people probably don't know how to do it, contact me if you're interested.)
  • V4 is remapped to be one z-level. With 3x the tiles on a zlevel there's no need for beach + caves, just combine it all into one.
  • This'll hurt some people who like the Aerosat but the same might have to be done for V2, unless people can come up with more Aerostat content (possibly making it its own exploration thing with its own hardcoded rooms/spawns/etc since POI seeded spawning would be harder to do but not impossible)
  • Lift is cut to not have a midpoint in its own zlevel/potentially just not have a midpoint, but IDK which.
  • Underdark is combined with mining with scaling difficulty if possible, otherwise just usual underdark difficulty, add a medic outpost and stuff if people want.
  • Solars/toxins is combined with the ground level, or the mining level.
  • Centcom is combined with some of the ships/transit/whatnot, because there's no reason to have "midpoint but it's centcom".
  • Alienship potentially combined with CC but depends on if space permits
  • Station remap happens according to outlines, 2 ground 2 station levels
That cuts it to (NOTE: Some levels reshuffled for preparation for maploader rewrites but won't impact gameplay)
1. Centcom/transit/ships/alienship/lift midpoint, 2-3 ground, 4-5 station, 6 mining, 7 V2, 8 V4

Then we add the following (some of these may be added before this but hey)
  • Snowfield map by RealMAGNUM/V6
  • Debris field map from upstream
  • Tether plains map from upstream
All three would be seeded exploration areas

Adding to the Zlevel stack
9. Snowfield 10. Debris field/space exploration 11. Tether plains

Total tile count: 715215

Which, as you can see, is a twofold increase, but I'm hoping with the optimizations it won't prove to be an issue. We might have to go for 200x200 or start trying other black magic if it starts leading to instability.

Discuss, debate, have fun. All of this is subject to change.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:44 am
by kevinz000
P.S. Exploration level tilecount usage can be cut down if someone figures out how to runtime load those, but as of right now we don't have a way of doing it that anyone here knows how to code, and the people who do are too busy with everything else.

Oh yeah and submap loading/ruin seeding code for exploration maps have to be optimized to hell but I'm willing to assume that it can be done (because it can.)

Re: [PROJECt] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:45 am
by Kerbal22
There is no understating the sheer amount of work this is going to take. We're basically going to be making a new map.

But it can most certainly be done. I have no real comments about the technical details, as they all seem fine to me from a mapping standpoint.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:52 am
by AlphaMach
I'm no coder/mapper, so while i don't have anything to say regarding the technical aspects, i do support the idea of giving the harder mining/station outside thing a medical outpost.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:55 am
by kevinz000
Non mappers are welcome to comment on everything btw, this impacts balance a load as well as gameplay, just clarifying.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 10:14 am
by ZeroNetAlpha
Volunteering my services as station mapper. I'll get something cooked up.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 11:29 am
by Cameron Lancaster
This sounds pretty good on paper. I'd ask that you please designate the floors as 1, 2, 3, and 4 instead of the current "Station 1 and 2 *and* Asteroid 1 and 2" setup that constantly confuses people. I'd kill to not have that anymore.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 12:49 pm
Hey so, if I were to figure out how port half-walls and windows like on bay and CM would it be possible to use them here. I always thought they looked nice and the need to climb over them adds a new level to between room combat.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 4:21 pm
by Kerbal22
Bay uses 3/4th sprites. We do not, and likely will not.
Unless they fit the existing art style, probably not.

EDIT: Toxins, Mining and Solars have been combined into one. I am setting my sights on squashing V4 into one z-level now.

Re: [PROJECT] The Map Overhaul - Tether

Posted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 8:44 pm
by VARKA & Selyn
From a player standpoint: I would keep the tether midpoint and have it as a kind of bar/restaurant and observation area. This would keep it in a convenient point for accessing any other level, and I feel it would also be interesting and thematically appropriate, assuming the overall "ground station <-tether-> orbital station" concept is being retained.

If expedition sites are being touched on, perhaps a redesign of the shuttle is in order? The existing design is compact and efficient but maybe a bit lopsided and ugly. I have some ideas to rework it that would end up making it a little bigger but also hopefully sleeker and cooler.

Either way I am going to dust off dreammaker and see if I can remember how to use the mapping tools properly.