No Man's Sky , taking bets.

Some think no mans sky will be released during the press conference on october 27th 2015.

What are your thoughts?

I think this is the first time I’ve ever heard of the game.

Hello Games is a small studio who self publish. This means the pressure to prematurely release is less as they have no external deadline. They’ve got their Joe Danger series which is presumely bankrolling their No Man’s Sky work. They’ve been pretty media savvy so far: people are interested in their unfinished game when they’ve never heard of their released work. I’d expect a bit more fanfare. With no further info, I’m calling it at a Easter time release, erring towards beginning of Q2

I’d forgotten the name bit when I looked it up again I remembered seeing a video about it a while back.

For those not in the know, it’s an ambitious procedurally generated planet exploration game which generates unique climates, geography, eco-system etc. with bucketloads of variety.

I’ve heard rumour that it will have two modes: exploration, where you can travel to and explore the various planets, and adventure, where you can work with other players in combat situations. Is that what other people have heard or did I dream that up?

players spawn randomly lightyears apart on planet-sized planets. the whole gimmick is that you’ll rarely (maybe even never) run into another person playing the game. and combat isn’t a main focus in the gameplay - unless you make it one. discovering is only a main focus if you make it one. space isn’t a focus unless you make it one. trade isn’t a focus unless you make it one.

is it possible you’re thinking of elite: dangerous or star citizen or some such jazz?

I’m having a little bit of difficulty bringing together “procedurally generated” and the idea that you can meet another player, and that they can be exploring, by chance, worlds that you’ve been to. I mean, take this quote from the ABOUT section:

Isn’t that incompatible with a procedurally generated universe?

The way it works is that the 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 planets are generated according to set rules. So they’re not stored in a server anywhere or on your hard-drive, but are generated by a set of formulae which are the same for all players. That way, players can visit the same planets but they probably won’t in natural play. It explains the idea better here.

That’s… a very sensible approach and a pretty damn good idea.

Also, wow, the number of planets.

Allegedly the game is so huge that the chances of encountering another player is slim, but you can encounter planets named by players.

Famous last words. :slight_smile:

No, seriously, in this day and age - and with the sheer amount of people who seem to have literally nothing else to do but play this sort of game 24/7, 30/365 - I don’t expect a bustling metropolis (unless some players take to colonising a world or something), but I’m not buying the “slim”.

This is a trick you can pull off in Inform too–Aaron Reed’s Procedural Randomness extension allows you to pull off a similar trick, by fixing a seed for each location and then using pseudorandom choices to generate the location from the seed–the random number generator will always make the same choices. So you don’t have to store the locations in memory; you can just re-generate them from a new seed every time.

Since I have it lying around on my hard drive, here’s a silly thing that I wrote using that trick. (It’s a 6G60 source but it seems to compile fine in 6L38–I guess Inform knows to ignore “indexed text.”)

[spoiler][code]“I have no huwikaz and I must zucimut” by Matt Weiner

Include Procedural Randomness by Aaron Reed.

Use American dialect.

A direction can be cardinal. North, south, east, and west are cardinal.

Understand “wall” as a direction when the item described is cardinal.

Section - The Long Corridor

The Long Corridor is a room. “You are in a seemingly infinitely long north-south corridor. (Latitude: [latitude]).” The oddly named object is a privately-named thing in the long corridor. Understand “xxxxxxxxx” as the oddly named object.

The latitude is a number that varies. When play begins: now the latitude is a random number between 500 and 27000.

For printing the name of the oddly named object:
say the name associated with the latitude.

The description of the oddly named object is “It looks like the [name associated with the latitude plus 1000] 1000 steps north of here.”

Instead of taking the oddly named object: say “What? You can’t take the [oddly named object]!”

Instead of going north in the corridor:
say “You walk north.”;
increment the latitude;
try looking.

Instead of going south in the corridor:
say “You walk south.”;
decrement the latitude;
try looking.

Section - The Worst Random Name Generator Ever

Table of Consonants
consonant (indexed text)

Table of Vowels
vowel (indexed text)

To decide what indexed text is the name associated with (germ - a number):
set seed to germ;
let string be indexed text;
now string is “[random consonant][random vowel][random consonant][random vowel][random consonant][random vowel][random consonant]”;
decide on string.

To say random consonant:
let n be a procedurally random number between 1 and the number of rows in the Table of Consonants;
choose row n in the Table of Consonants;
say the consonant entry.

To say random vowel:
let n be a procedurally random number between 1 and the number of rows in the Table of Vowels;
choose row n in the Table of Vowels;
say the vowel entry.

Section - Taking and Examining By Name

[This is where the dynamic parsing happens, such as it is.]

[Examining by name is an action applying to one topic. Understand “examine [text]” as examining by name.

Carry out examining by name:
repeat with the item running through visible things:
if “[the item]” matches the text the topic understood:
try examining the item; [really I should be collecting this into a match list, but you get the point]
rule succeeds;
say “You can’t see any such thing.”

Taking by name is an action applying to one topic. Understand “take [text]” as taking by name.

Carry out taking by name:
repeat with the item running through visible things:
if “[the item]” matches the text the topic understood:
try taking the item;
rule succeeds;
say “You can’t see any such thing.”
After reading a command:
if the player’s command includes “xxxxxxxxx”:
say “There’s no xxxxxxxxx here.”;
reject the player’s command;
let T be indexed text;
let T be the player’s command;
if T matches the text “[the name associated with the latitude]”:
replace the text “[the name associated with the latitude]” in T with “xxxxxxxxx”;
change the text of the player’s command to T.[/code][/spoiler]

If you compile to Glulx, at latitude 12235 you should always find a mizirim, which looks like the tarawik 1000 steps north.

There is at least one other famous Inform game that uses a similar trick to procedurally generate a maze (though the one I’m thinking of predates I7 and the Procedural Randomness extension).

The first I heard of this trick was in John Harris’s Mayflight but I think it goes all the way back to the original Elite at least. (And by “I think” of course I mean I read it at the Digital Antiquarian.)

Why would that be incompatible? It’s how Elite works. It’s an MMO, with almost 1 million players playing on the same procedural generated galaxy.

If you seed a random number generator with the same seed, it’s gonna give you the exact same “random” numbers :slight_smile:

Interesting on the procedural generation approach. A couple other games doing something similar:

Malevolence - Sword of Ahkranox, which has more of note than just its jawbreaker name. There’s a single seed, but that seed runs for everybody. The biggest draw of the game is emergent gameplay around the experience of being the Very First person to go somewhere. Everyone starts at the same position, though, which changes things a bit. I remember hearing that you have to walk for about two weeks to get somewhere new now, though I don’t recall if that’s two weeks of in-game time or two weeks of real time.

Starbound - sort of like 2D sci-fi Minecraft, in its own way, but with (to me, annoying; to others, fun) boss battles to move upward. From the planets FAQ: “Every planet has unique coordinates in the navigation console. These coordinates act as seeds to the game’s internal random number generator, and as such, will always produce an identical planet when used. There are 12.667 quadrillion planets able to be generated within the game currently, with 422.22 quadrillion planned.”

I’d be OK with the boss battles if losing them didn’t require you to replay the entire freaking level.

It’s already been explained to me, but basically, if each player has a different procedurally generated universe, different players cannot jump in, because they will each have their own universe.

Of course, I knew nothing about MMOs or Elite, and how there was a fixed underlying system. Now I know.

That’s 2^64 planets, which means that the probability of a collision will be 50% with 5 billion attempts. Since people will be changing planets, but there will be much less than 5 billion players, the probability of two players accidentally reaching the same planet will be different, but I don’t know what it would be…

I started adding a seed system to Kerkerkruip, but didn’t finish working on it.

Further back than that! River Raid for the Atari 2600 (1982) generates its river with a fixed-seed algorithm.