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Terra Fluida

Discussion in 'Rise from Erebus Modmod' started by LeonardoDFinchy, Sep 4, 2010.

  1. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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    Have you ever thought that... ah, screw it. The intro I had planned was too verbose. To business.

    The Mechanics

    Firstly, terrain should 'bleed'. That is, the borders between the various biomes should not stay static. Deserts can grow like forests, forests can drive it back, the tundra can grow or recede, things like that. Improvements and features should affect this. Intense farming next to a desert should grow it faster, the Seven Pines should encourage forests to grow, Ice Mana should chill the lands around.

    Second, more terrain. Rather than Wetland->Wasteland with ->Glacial sprouting off, have two full axes of Temperature and Humidity, and 'corner' terrains.

    Third, more gradual hell. I propose three layers. The first layer represents your standard 'evil kingdom', with thorns, swamps, wild monsters etc. The extreme terrains are unaffected at this level. The second layer represents hell terrains as we've come to understand it. Then the third layer goes one step further, to the actual destruction of erebus itself. The familiar idea of terrain disappears to be replaced with the abyss, with only the most extreme concepts surviving; Erebus reduced to it's base components.

    Fourth, to balance hell, heaven. Similar to hell, there are three layers, as 'corruption' is expelled from the land. Early on, heaven represents the 'good kingdom', clear streams, flowing grassy meadows, and sunshine. The second layer sees the land becoming idealised, halfway between dream and reality. Finally, the land is pure, and ordered, but monochrome, where all dissenting ideas cease to exist, giving way to the aether.

    Fifth, all of the above are affected by concious action. Buildings, spells, the mere presence of certain units, all slowly but surely affect the world around them. Shrines to deities, elemental spells, and acts of good and evil all bend the fabric of reality by their effects.

    The Reasons

    Basically, in Erebus as I see it, there is a disjoint between the three methods of terraforming: passive, forced, and hell. Passive terraforming adheres strictly to cultural borders, allowing such strange things as a jungle in the middle of the ice cap, and vice versa. Forced terraforming (achieved through spells) is too instant and too powerful. Hell terrain then only spreads once the Infernal are summoned, and again sticks to cultural borders.

    I sorta want to bring the three in line, and the above mechanics are how I want to do it. Spells, buildings, units, actions, and alignment all cause the land to change at their location (possibly the palace for alignment and events), but these effects spread out into the world, ignorant of whether the folk in a tile prefer one civilisation over another. Scorch, Vitalise, and Spring now slowly change not only the tile they are on, but also the land around them, to no certain distance, eventually shifting the whole of Erebus to their respective terrain. The only limit is how many magic users you can devote to the task (or how much mana, when the magic changes come around), and the strength of opposing or neutralising forces at work.
    The terraforming civs will no longer be able to create their personal paradises without committing some resources to the job, but by focusing on this ability by deploying mages and buildings, the effects will extend beyond their borders and encroach on other lands. Other civs may then be given these powers to lesser extents, and in the form of side-effects. Want that power plant? Are you sure you can afford the environmental damage?
    All of this can then be applied to the Heaven/Hell axis I plan on introducing. The Sheiam can begin the process of destruction long before the founding of the Veil, and the Elohim can start constructing holy wards to reinforce their sanctuary. Both will be limited by the AC; Heaven may be desirable, but it can only be achieved by expelling part of what makes Erebus what it is. Go too far, and destruction becomes ever more likely.
    The expansion of terrain types also opens the door all sorts of new stuff. Different animals spawning on different terrain, new bonuses, etc. But all that will come later.

    I don't expect this to come about with my say-so. I plan on doing this myself. I'm currently waiting on the 1.31 dll files, so in the mean time I want to gauge opinions and get some feedback on the idea. There's also a question I want to asking the modding community: Should I track climate effects, or mana levels? While it'd be simpler to assign hot/cold, wet/dry, heaven/hell effects to spells, buildings, and whatever, assigning them passive mana effects allows this idea to spread further. For example, when magic changes come in with 1.4 (IIRC), a strong 'mana field' in an area could reduce costs of aligned spells, and increase costs of opposing spells. A mage stood on top of a fire node, could, for example, cast cheaper fireballs. Affinity for certain types could power up or down some units, too. What do you think?

    I look forward to your ideas. Oh, and an outline for the terrain is below.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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    In case I need it
     
  3. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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  4. lemonjelly

    lemonjelly Modding For Ethne

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    I like this, I really like this.
    In my Mana Is Shiny mod, mana types do have an effect on their environment :)

    I'm not sure about this, could you explain some more please?

    I like this idea :)

    No, no, no :p
    I just don't like this idea at all...

    I like it, I like it :)

    Once again, Entropy Mana spreads Hell Terrain in Mana Is Shiny :)
    There are ideas for terraforming in 1.4 though :)

    I like, I like, but once again, I don't like the heaven idea :(

    I'm really, really looking forward to seeing this ingame! :)
     
  5. PPQ_Purple

    PPQ_Purple Techpriest Engineer

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    I like some of it but I don't think that the concept of Heaven fits into FFH.

    You see, in FFH lore there is no such thing as heaven and hell. Instead you have different vaults, each being the version of the world made by the god that owns it.
    The Hell Terrain in the game is not a copy of some arbitrary evil place but a sign of the destruction of Erebus by the minions of Agres. And that destruction will end in oblivion like you said. In fact one could say that the end result of hell spreading would be the copy of the vault of Agres, the god who destroyed his vault out of spite.

    So in essence, your hell idea is actually spot on when it comes to how it would work.
    But there is no heaven to balance it out.
     
  6. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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    I understand the trepidation with the Heaven idea, but I believe I may have explained it a bit wrong. Some more information may help.

    In my mind, Hell terrain is more than simply destruction and entropy, it is the effect of the will of Agares (and Camulos, Aeron, and Ceridwen), spread through his minions, bringing the aspects of his vault to Erebus, which is established as conforming to the wills of the gods. Heaven terrain is, in this respect, the wills of other gods, attempting to establish a counter to this. I'd imagine Junil would be the prime suspect in this regards. The intent is to show the unlawful/chaotic parts removed from the world, but with them, all variety, hence the one viable terrain at the top of the heaven chain.

    It is only Junil who would go this far, but Sirona and Amatheon may desire the lower levels, and the lowest level is well within the realm of human will.

    The flavour may be off with some of the names. Perhaps it's too much sunshine and buttercups?

    The higher reaches of Heaven terrain are not actually very productive, as the otherworldly nature of the terrain makes it impossible to work with corporeal tools. And it is as much the destruction of Erebus as Hell.
     
  7. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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    Basically, current terrain is more or less centred on Plains, going wetter to grassland and wetland, dryer to desert and wasteland, and colder to taiga, tundra, and glacier. A T shape. My suggestion is making it a cross, and have intermediate terrain for hot/wet, cold/dry, etc. That .pdf gives an idea, though many of the names may change.
     
  8. PPQ_Purple

    PPQ_Purple Techpriest Engineer

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    If my grasp of the lore is correct in any way, shape or form. And I think it is:

    Correct so far, but there is also the part where the energy of this sort of change simply tends to destroy the world around it. The closest real world equivalent is what Russians did in Siberia when they used nuclear weapons to dig artificial lakes.


    Junil does not do clear streams, flowing grassy meadows, and sunshine.
    He is the god of order, his vision of the world would most likely be some sort of Cubist nightmare where everything is perfectly ordered. Well not really, but he is the god of unyielding order so you can figure it won't be heaven as we know it.

    The same goes for the other gods. FFH gods are strange and not exactly like your average good deity.


    Plus, the whole compact thing kind of prevents them from intervening like you want them to.
    All in all, the only way the gods fight against Hell Terrain is by helping remove it. And we already see that with the Sanctify spell.
     
  9. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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    Again, I don't really think there's too great a problem here. I of course realise that Junil doesn't do the happy nature thing, that was intended more towards Amatheon, and perhaps the blended wills of Sirona, Lugus, and some of the 'friendlier' neutral gods like Sucellus and Cernunnos. And lets not forget the will of man (or the efforts of Magister Cultuum). I only intend that final, single, pure terrain to represent Junil's thoughts, and as I said, it will not be productive. Any cities within the "Heaven" terrain (remember I can easily change names, nothing is set yet) will rely entirely on trade for any production or whatever, and will by most measures be in a form of ordered stasis. Only angelic beings (and we probably aren't even talking about the Mercurians, here) could prosper here.

    The issue seems to be more the terminology. As you say, the gods are not "good" and "evil" but more follow or defy the will of the One. I take issue with how you say there is no "Heaven" to balance out "Hell", because really there is no "Hell" either. There is only entropy, the vaults, and Agares.

    I should mention that there will be several neutralising forces, too, especially anything related to Dagda (Cassiel would likely act as a neutraliser), and some mundane acts can be destructive (Mechanos industry, warfare in general) and will tip the balance in favour of "Hell" terrain.

    Of course, I can always add an option to keep "Heaven" terrain out of your game.
     
  10. PPQ_Purple

    PPQ_Purple Techpriest Engineer

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    I tried my best to explain it but it seems I can't. So I will leave it to others.
    But for my closing statment I will say this.

    Hell spreads into the world because Agres actively wants to destroy all creation. The other gods have no such ambitions. They have no motive to spread their vaults into Erebus.

    Your entire idea hinges on the unlikely scenario that the gods would somehow chose to band together and form a mix-vault of happy bunnies that they would spread into the world together. The notion of that is kind of WTH.


    In other words, do what ever you want. After all, not everyone will agree with me. But the mentioned option would be more than welcome.
     
  11. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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    1. Perhaps I am misunderstanding, and I'm sorry, but I think I get where you're coming from

    2. Yes, I know this. And I realise that my argument about Junil sounds contrary to what I'm about to say, but... oh wait. OK, I get it. I was arguing about the gods' will. Yes, I was wrong there. Sorry. That probably also leads to

    3. I didn't mean that the gods banded together. What I meant by 'blended wills' was that each god's will pulls erebus a certain way, and some of them together pull it together in that direction. I mean, someone pulling north cares nothing about something moving east-west. Another guy pulling east cares nothing about north-south. But both of them pulling, caring nothing about the other guy, will together, through their combined will, pull whatever it is a heck of a long way north-east. Though I realise this is null considering most of them don't care.

    I would still raise again my arguments for the will of man, and raise another variable: religion. If I have my lore correct, FoL is essentially nature-loving. Quite a harmonious idea, which does, I think lend itself to the idea of "good" land (naturally, there are arguments about this, which I think lends weight to the "Religious Schisms" idea I've seen floating around).

    Then there's the Order. You mentioned the minions of Agares. The order more or less fulfils the counter-role for Junil (though I do accept Junil himself wouldn't bother). Who could say that the most fundamentalist elements of the Order would not attempt to "rectify" these trespasses against the will of the One? If I recall correctly, the One would have destroyed evil if it were not a part of every living thing, but he will return to separate them. Perhaps some think the gods take too long?

    You don't appear yet to have come up with a reason why it couldn't happen, but of course you can't see into my head for all the reasons I think it could, and I likewise cannot see into your head to find why you think it couldn't. But thanks for reminding me that most of the gods don't will much for Erebus. I welcome anyone else with knowledge of the Lore to help me bring that one among my ideas closer in line with the lore, if it can be done.
     
  12. Valkrionn

    Valkrionn The Hamster King

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    Not really. This is the current terrain chart, as used by the passive terraforming (and keep in mind, where a climate touches the edge of the chart it extends on into infinity!).



    As you can see, it's a square, with temperature and humidity entering into the equation. Though yes, I do see what you mean to say.

    The main issue I have with Heaven (other than it flat out not belonging in a Dark Fantasy game, of course :p) is that no good god would exert that force on Erebus. The Evil gods bend the Compact; The Good gods do not, at least to that extent. Junil, especially, would not violate the Compact in that manner; He is the god of Law, and would never break it.
     
  13. PPQ_Purple

    PPQ_Purple Techpriest Engineer

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    Something just hit me.
    Is not the act of breaking the Compact called the "Fall"? And do we remember what happened the last time one of the gods did that? (hint, it was included into base BTS as a scenario)

    Just saying.
     
  14. Valkrionn

    Valkrionn The Hamster King

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    Actually, the last god to Fall was Bhall, which wasn't included. However, her fall left Mulcarn unopposed, allowing him to enter creation.

    Breaking the Compact is not the same as Falling; The first is an agreement between gods, the second is the god choosing to disobey the wishes of the One.
     
  15. PPQ_Purple

    PPQ_Purple Techpriest Engineer

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    Oh, my bad. Sorry.
     
  16. LeonardoDFinchy

    LeonardoDFinchy Chieftain

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    Just to clarify, I've accepted that the gods will would not (likely) do this. The Order? Maybe. But whatever. That kind of thing is mechanically an alteration in an integer (art notwithstanding). I can leave it to last, and add it to my own little fairy-world for my own pleasure. Getting the dynamics working is more important than the stops on the way.

    Oh, attached is the chart, modified so everyone can see where I was coming from with the T thing.
     
  17. Valkrionn

    Valkrionn The Hamster King

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    You should probably contact Sylvain5477, as IIRC he was developing a dynamic climate system using python that does pretty much what you intend (no idea how far he got).

    Actually, if not for him wanting to do that the climate code wouldn't be exposed to python yet. :p
     
  18. sylvain5477

    sylvain5477 Cerebrus father

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    I'm in design and testing (POC) phase atm :)
    Seems similar to the idea described here, although not sure about the details. My main focus being to have climate interaction less predictabe and with more impact.

    I'm writting a doc in google, I could authorise you to have a look and tell me what you think about it.

    EDIT : I haven't consider heaven and hell at all, only classic earth climate for now (already complexe...)
     
  19. Skitters

    Skitters Prince

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    ...the "good" terraforming is already present with Ancient Forests. Obviously this is very FOL-centric, and pushes for a blanket of trees rather than a mixture of rolling meadows and trees

    The Order doesn't really strike me as a religion particularly in tune with Erebus - nature is too chaotic. For me, the Orders form of terraforming is nice straight roads to get troops to front quicker....perhaps with a few nicely organised orchards and farms to feed them

    After FoL, I could imagine the Empyrean being a force for nature


    ...but there are some other complexities to consider: the Svart for example don't strike me as a people who would embrace hell terrain - though I would like to see it be possible for CoE to keep Guardians of Nature, but for it to help "shroud" the civ, perhaps switching treeant spawning for Giant spiders.

    The mechanic could also force the Calabim, Clan and Doviello away from CoE and FoL too.

    ..and then there is the impact of the White Hand to consider
     
  20. Deon

    Deon Lt. of Mordor

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    It would be fun to see. Something like treants for neutral and spiders for evil... It would make wonders with Archos. I am not sure about good though... Strong animals like white stags called "forest spirits"?
     

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