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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:15 am 
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I'm trying to create a custom, playable, Jovian-like species (gas giants good, everything else hostile) but I'm new at scripting and I've no idea about how to make my home planet a gas giant. Is it even possible, and if so, how should I do that?


Last edited by Jaumito on Fri Jul 07, 2017 10:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:58 am 
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take a look at the script for the SuperTesters species. They are disabled in the release versions but I think the script should be there just commented out (or you can find it in master on GHithub). They're the only species I can recall that can live on Gas Giants. As for the home planet, I think you would just do that by setting the size (in FO terms GasGiant is really a size rather than an environment).

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 10:08 am 
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Dilvish wrote:
take a look at the script for the SuperTesters species.

That's actually where I started from. I also defined a new JOVIAN_EP environment in /default/scripting/species/common/env.macros, and I thought I had to specify a homeworld size in the species file (where other playable species invoke the LARGE_PLANET macro) - and that's where my problems began. Turns out not specifying any planet size at all defaults to a gas giant, so problem solved. Thanks for your time anyway!


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 2:45 pm 
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Yeah, I've done this myself, only specify Gas Giant= Good, you don't need to mess around with large planet, etc that causes confusion (it defaults to creating a medium planet of your good environment, but gas giants are already size 6 not size 3).

You'll find that the species is overpowered really quickly unless you nerf it in some way, all the growth and habitability bonuses are based on a multiple of planet size, so while you'll suffer for supply you'll outresearch and out produce everyone else and there are a lot of gas giants in a typical game.

I look forward to seeing results though, if someone can come up with a hydrogue analogue that isn't horrificly overpowered I'd like to add it into the game.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 4:33 pm 
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OK, another problem I have: if I set outposts on gas giants within supply range, I'm not allowed to build colonies there -
and yes, I have 'enabled' the /default/scripting/buildings/colonies/SP_SUPER_TEST.focs.txt script. What did I miss this time?

MatGB wrote:
You'll find that the species is overpowered really quickly unless you nerf it in some way

Somewhat done, already. I've made all non-gas giant worlds uninhabitable rather than hostile, gave the species both BAD_RESEARCH and BAD_INDUSTRY, will add bad pop or worse if that isn't enough. (On the flip side, I also gave them ultimate stealth and self-sustainability because it just fits the theme - you can't get better cloud cover than on a gas giant, right?)
Quote:
I look forward to seeing results though, if someone can come up with a hydrogue analogue that isn't horrificly overpowered I'd like to add it into the game.

As a playable race, or just native?


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:48 pm 
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That would depend, playable would be fascinating but I suspect hideously overpowered: I want/we need more playable species but have to be careful about them being too esoteric.

Self Sustaining by the way is currently overpowered to the level of probably game breaking, the AI has now been updated to how it currently works and I've had a few Trith explosions that worry me, while it makes sense for a species of this nature to be self sustaining compared to other types, something like phototrophe is probably going to be less extremely problematic.

It's possible you can't get the buildings to appear because your empire hasn't unlocked them? If you're playing a game and tweaking as you go it can be easy to overlook: I tend to add a single tech that unlocks it in one turn, it needs to be in the empire unlocks script for it to be there at game start, which I regularly forget.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 8:45 am 
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MatGB wrote:
while it makes sense for a species of this nature to be self sustaining compared to other types, something like phototrophe is probably going to be less extremely problematic.

Less problematic, sure. Except, given the opacity of known gas giants' atmospheres, I'd bet that neither phototrophy nor phototropism would mean a thing to hypothetical species living there :lol:

Thinking about it - I haven't tried it yet, but would it be possible to create a 'plain' species without a defined metabolism (neither organic, phototrophic, etc.) so it wouldn't get any metabolism-related bonuses?

Quote:
It's possible you can't get the buildings to appear because your empire hasn't unlocked them? If you're playing a game and tweaking as you go it can be easy to overlook: I tend to add a single tech that unlocks it in one turn, it needs to be in the empire unlocks script for it to be there at game start, which I regularly forget.

Think I found it - there's indeed a BLD_SUPER_TEST template in the 'buildings' folder that seems to do just that, now I just need to figure out how to 'unlock' it.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 4:51 pm 
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The concept of metabolism is not hard-coded (same with traits), though a species with a new metabolism (or none at all) might not be desirable for default content.

The effects tutorial has a simple example for creating a new species, more detailed info on entries can be found on the Effects page.
In addition to having CanProduceShips and CanColonize in the species entry, the species will need a colony building entry and knowledge of how to construct them.
Entries for other species colony buildings are in default/scripting/buildings/colonies
...
Most colony buildings are granted knowledge of to all players at the start of the game from default/scripting/starting_unlock/items.inf.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 11:28 pm 
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dbenage-cx wrote:
The concept of metabolism is not hard-coded (same with traits), though a species with a new metabolism (or none at all) might not be desirable for default content.

But would it be OK if this new metabolism came with only maluses? I mean something like

Skototropic (basically, the opposite to phototrophic - light is detrimental to growth)
  • [no star/black hole/neutron star] no change
  • [red star] small malus to pop
  • ...
  • [blue star] huge malus to pop

Obviously, no species would use this metabolism except 'exotic' ones like the one I'm working on atm, which needs quite a bit of a nerf. Although it might be useful in the future for more standard species who'd want more bells and whistles than usual.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 2:34 pm 
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We have the Banforo already, wouldn't want to nerf them with red stars but it's a similar idea, although they're lithic with a unique malus.

Also, phototrophes could live in the upper atmospheres of a gas giant, AC Clarke had something similar in 2010.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 4:13 pm 
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The point was, if (as dbenage-cx said) not having a metabolism isn't an option, and currently existing metabolims would either make gas-giant dwellers (for brevity's sake I'll call them 'Jovians' from now on, until I or someone can think of a better name) overpowered, or be unthematic for them, there should be an available metabolism to solve this kind of issue (why isn't there a generic, "neutral" metabolism btw?). Phototrophy could be thematic, except (a) I think it'd still gives too large bonuses to Jovians and (b) I'm so sold on the idea to make Jovians "hidden burrowers" of sorts it wouldn't really make sense for them.

Banforo is a somewhat different case, being lithic with the light-sensitive part being coded in the species definition file. Although if you guys are fine with me doing the same with the Jovians and skototropism (funny, I thought I had invented the term but I just found out that's a real word!), that's fine with me too.

MatGB wrote:
We have the Banforo already, wouldn't want to nerf them with red stars but it's a similar idea, although they're lithic with a unique malus.

Also, phototrophes could live in the upper atmospheres of a gas giant, AC Clarke had something similar in 2010.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 6:01 pm 
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To me, it makes more sense to give jovians organic methabolism.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:16 pm 
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Oberlus wrote:
To me, it makes more sense to give jovians organic methabolism.

Depends on the mental image you create for them, I suppose. Myself, I see them as vast gaseous forms who avoid exposure to radiation because ionization would be detrimental to their well-being - hence, skototropic metabolism. Plus, I like to think of them as the protagonists of Terry Bisson's short story Meat (if you've never read it, you really should: it's a very short read and hilariously funny) - so, given their aversion to meat, definitely not organic. :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 9:55 am 
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Jaumito wrote:
I see them as vast gaseous forms who avoid exposure to radiation because ionization would be detrimental to their well-being - hence, skototropic metabolism. Plus, I like to think of them as the protagonists of Terry Bisson's short story Meat (if you've never read it, you really should: it's a very short read and hilariously funny) - so, given their aversion to meat, definitely not organic. :lol:
I just read that short story. Liked it, thanks for the link.
Their meat revulsion could pair with an organic, vegetable metabolism, as well as with lithivore/inorganic metabolism.
Skototropism (had to search for it :)) is the growth or movement away from light, but not a metabolism. You could have lithic/organic/robotic metabolism + skototrophism (can't imagine of reasonable case for robotic metabolism, though).

Anyway, the thing is that if self-sustaining is OP for Jovians, and since phototrophic is ("obviously") not the best choice given their natural habitat, nor it is robotic (because we don't see them as robots nor cyborgs), we have organic and inorganic (lithic) chemistry to explain their metabolism. I would like any of them, but after this reflections I'm more inclined to see them as lithic.


BTW, "neutral metabolism" (understood as "not lithic, not organic, not robotic, not phototrophic and not self-sustaining) means just "something-else metabolism", so it should be defined, what's the source of their diet and how they process those nutrients and energy into their bodies to move and grow? And I don't think there is any imaginable metabolism that would not fit in the categories that FO already have. I mean, if something does not use organic nor inorganic (stones/metals) chemistry, what the heck does it use?
What could be possible, IMO, is to have a metabolism that can't benefit from specials, because it has a very specific chemistry that is incompatible with anything that can be found in such specials. That we could call it neutral, or maybe better something like exclusive, uncongenial, incompatible, excluding or restricted metabolism (English speaker come to my aid). The purpose of having such thing in FO would be to bring some extra variety and specifically a new form of species disadvantage (mostly nullified when playing in a galaxy with no specials).


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